E3 2010. If your existing Xbox 360 is doing just fine, and you've always been partial to things that grow in Mushroom Kingdoms, you're in the right place. The Big N is just about ready to take the stage here in LA, hopefully bringing a three-dee DS and a Wii console with -- gasp -- 1080i output. Just kidding about that last one. Sadly.
We're going to get started at 9AM Pacific, 12PM Eastern. Don't miss it, you'll be sorry!
We're going to get started at 9AM Pacific, 12PM Eastern. Don't miss it, you'll be sorry!
1:19PM And that's it, we're going to try to get a glimpse!
1:18PM They're heading into the crowd, and we're going to get a brief glimpse at it in person. They've also got playable Zelda up in front of the stage.
1:17PM "In the end, there's nothing like the real thing." "We're going to let all of you in the Nokia Theater travel into this experience right now." Trotting out hundreds of women holding 3DSs.
1:15PM Woah, this is starting to get a little trippy. A huge Bowser comes out of the screen and ignites a screaming Reggie with flame. "That sure felt real to me," says Reggie, "but I'm not sure if it felt real to you yet."
1:15PM Different Nintendo execs walk up to the 3DS, are attacked by a 3D object, and then sucked into the handheld.
1:14PM "When we began this morning, we promised something for everyone." Rattling off the refreshed IP. "But we also talked about new experiences, and we don't think anything else at E3 will deliver on that like the Nintendo 3DS." For those watching online, there's exclusive content that "won't be available anywhere else." "I wish we could bring you all the LA to get your hands on the 3DS at our booth. Unfortunately, there's no way to convey what it's like to use the 3DS on stage... so we decided to communicate it a very different way." Showing an ad of sorts.
1:12PM Lots of love: "what could be cooler than that, who wouldn't want to be a part of that future?" And now Reggie's back.
1:10PM "And to conclude my section today, I'd like some of these developers describe their reaction to the Nintendo 3DS." Hideo Kojima: "I wasn't told anything at first, I was told to sit down and suddenly it became 3D."
1:09PM "To all developers and publishers, I want you to know that I'm truly grateful for the support you're offering."
1:09PM Teasing a few titles: DJ Hero 3D, Kingdom Hearts 3D, Saints Row 3D, Madden, Resident Evil Revelations, Assassin's Creed, Metal Gear Solid.
1:08PM "We at Nintendo have launched many hardware systems, but we think we'll enjoy the biggest software support ever... over course, we're working on our own titles at Nintendo." Miyamoto is working on Nintendogs + Cats.
1:06PM Now it's talking up wireless functionality, where the 3DS can communicate with another 3DS while asleep. Nintendogs had a similar feature, but when you started playing a different game, the communication stopped. The 3DS is different, it communicates regardless of which game is being played. It can also work over the internet with a WiFi access point. It passively downloads new stages, quests, etc. "in a way that can be used by anybody, regardless of their gaming knowledge or technical experience. And there's no need to pay a monthly fee."
1:03PM It's called Kid Icarus Uprising, and it's out in "summer." This summer?
1:03PM Graphics look almost at a Wii level, or perhaps an iPad level. There's a lot of flying, jumping, and shooting. And a kickass 90's soundtrack.
1:02PM Now they're talking Project Sora, which was specifically designed for the 3DS, and it features Kid Icarus!
1:00PM Not a ton of excitement in the room... maybe it's the color? "However, gamers care most about games."
1:00PM "Nintendo 3DS is also capable of showing 3D Hollywood movies." They'll have 3D trailers from Disney, WB and DreamWorks at the booth.
12:59PM "You may want to try out this function at our booth."
12:59PM Compatible with Nintendo DSi. There's a camera on the inside, and two lenses on the lid for taking 3D photos.
12:58PM "Next, control. We've installed a slide pad for analog control." There's also an accelerometer and a gyroscope. Look out, iPhone 4!
12:58PM "While we've added 3D, we've also made improvements to the graphics capability of the hardware itself."
12:57PM Only the bottom screen is a touch screen, like with the original DS.
12:56PM "What we needed was a way to make 3D a reality for the mass market, and the 3DS is our answer. Let me introduce you." There's a 3D Depth Slider on the side to maximize or eliminate the 3D depth effect.
12:56PM "Nintendo produced the first 3D video game 15 years ago."
12:55PM Two screens, upper screen is 3.5-inch widescreen and can show 3D without need for special glasses.
12:55PM There's an analog nub on the top left of the lower half. "This is Nintendo 3DS, I can't wait for you to try this."
12:55PM Soturu Iwata is out to show it to us. It looks just like a DS!
12:54PM And there's one out on the stage, shrouded in smoke!
12:54PM Now... Nintendo 3DS.
12:53PM "A solution that lets you take 3D with you wherever you go, with ample game content at the outset, and best of all: no glasses." A video is walking us through the history of 3D glasses, up through Avatar.
12:53PM "At CES we heard a lot about 3D in your living room... investment there is in the thousands." Slides show adorable families wearing hilarious 3D glasses. "We think there's a better way."
12:52PM "As we mentioned at the outset, we're not just raising the bar, but we're making that bar extend far into the distance. 3D play on the Nintendo 3DS is on the way."
12:51PM So, Donkey Kong, GoldenEye, Kirby, Metroid. "You might find your game memories sliding into the past." "Now we're moving in the other direction."
12:51PM It's called Donkey Kong Country Returns, it will be out this holiday.
12:50PM Nintendo is really clinging on to sidescrolling platforming.
12:50PM Now it's time for... Donkey Kong! It's a sidescrolling title, looks a ton like the SNES games.
12:49PM "What hasn't been lost is the sense of isolation and exploration that have always been the hallmarks of the franchise... but has been pushed to new emotional corridors it has never traveled before." It's out August 31st.
12:47PM We're peeping a Metroid trailer that easily has some of the best graphics we've seen on the Wii.
12:47PM Now it's Metroid time! Metroid: Other M.
12:46PM Dragon Quest IX for the DS. Major focus on multiplayer and insane quantity of content. Top player has logged 140 hours and feels like she's "just getting started." It comes out July 11th.
12:45PM Now we're talking Dragon Quest.
12:45PM Reggie says it's not just about the looks, though, it's how it works. "Try it for yourself in the Nintendo booth." It comes out this fall.
12:44PM This is to knitting what Yoshi's Island was to crayons.
12:43PM It's a sidescrolling platformer, with a world and mechanics based on sewn cloth shapes. It looks adorable, naturally.
12:43PM "Should Kirby stick to his knitting, or spin a yarn in a way that yarn has never been spun before." Introducing Kirby's Epic Yarn.
12:42PM "Of course, keeping franchises fresh takes a lot of work *inside* Nintendo as well." "It's hard to imagine someone softer than Kirby, but he's managed to work his way into the hearts of a lot of hard core gamers."
12:41PM And Reggie is back.
12:40PM There are different gameplay types, we're peeping a sidescrolling level based on the classic Steamboat Willie... it looks pretty cool, much more interesting than the sort of generic overworld.
12:39PM "Do you solve problems with paint thinner to remove obstacles, or do you use paint to find a way around them?" It's a bit of a good vs. evil dynamic, or perhaps creative vs. lazy. Your choices in the world impact how characters treat you.
12:37PM Mickey is a platforming fool, and he can blast paint or paint thinner to reveal or erase characters / objects / ground.
12:36PM The world is 3D, but there are 2D-animated cutscenes with classic characters.
12:35PM We're going to some gameplay.
12:34PM The game is called "Disney Epic Mickey." And here's Warren Spector and Adam Creighton from Disney.
12:34PM Now we're talking Mickey Mouse. Just cranking through the franchises, Reggie!
12:33PM It's arriving exclusively for Wii this holiday.
12:33PM Has all those crazy multiplayer modes you remember, but it stars Daniel Craig as James Bond, so it's way different.
12:32PM GoldenEye! Applause!
12:31PM "For other gamers, Golden has an entirely different meaning." GoldenEye?
12:31PM It's a RPG with a Zelda-style overworld and for-serious RPG-style combat (summons!). It arrives this holidays.
12:29PM Up next: Golden Sun: Dark Dawn for Nintendo DS. Showing a trailer.
12:28PM Moving on to Just Dance: introducing Just Dance 2. With 40+ new tracks, new moves, up to 8 players. Coming Fall 2010.
12:27PM This looks like something designed for your 7 year old sister. It's all mini games, and some of those mini games involve horses. Let's no dwell on this painful subject, alright?
12:26PM Now showing Nintendo's next "bridge title" that moves gamers up to intermediate level. Introducing... Wii Party.
12:26PM "Last year, you heard a rumor that Wii momentum was starting the wane. Then we set a record last year for the most sales of a single system in a single month." "You heard that Wii owners don't buy games, but more Wii games have been bought than for any other system." "More consumers intend to buy a Wii in the next 6 months than the other two systems combined." "Mistaken belief that Wii owners only play Wii Sports" Simply not the case, says Reggie. Trots out Mario Kart and Super Mario Bros. Wii, at 22 million and 14 million copies, respectively.
12:23PM It looks just like every Mario sports game ever, but with different sports.
12:23PM It's coming in 2011.
12:23PM Ice hockey on a beach? Only in Mario. Now it's basketball. The game is called Mario Sports Mix.
12:23PM We're watching a trailer, which quickly moved from volleyball to hockey to dodgeball.
12:22PM "This year, Mario the sportsman stays true to his roots, but swings back in some venues where even he's never competed before." Mario... volleyball!
12:22PM "Let's start with the world of sport." Contrasting the ultra-realistic licensed gaming titles with the arcade titles like NBA Jam.
12:21PM Highest goal of game design: crossing age, culture, and gender.
12:20PM Reggie's back. Zelda is "just the top line of our E3 experience today."
12:20PM There's a trailer of more gameplay. We're particularly interested in this whip action. Ooh, Link base jumping!
12:19PM "You can all look forward to playing Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword next year." A bit of disappointment there. Still, looks like they've put the Motion Plus to good use here.
12:19PM "We had some technical difficulties, but we can assure you it's great on the show floor."
12:18PM Now he's got a whip out. "We've got some bat-like enemies that you can take out with a flick of the wrist."
12:17PM Still having control issues. This is the heavy price we pay for our modern, wireless technology, people: botched keynote demos. And the bees. And brain cancer.
12:16PM "To use the bow and arrow you hold the C button on the nunchuck." Pull back, release C to shoot the arrow. You can also shoot a beetle, which you fly around by tilting the Wii remote. It looks as if they've taken most of the experiences from Wii Sports Resort and just game-ified them.
12:15PM Uh oh, he's having trouble with the bow and arrow. "Everything went really well in our rehearsals, you guys need to turn off your wireless devices." Oh dear.
12:14PM He's demonstrating the slingshot (you hold down the B button to pull things out of your pocket). You no longer have to aim at the screen to aim, you just tilt the controller to aim... unfortunately he's having a lot of trouble aiming, and ends up just killing his spider enemies with his sword.
12:12PM Now he's fighting enemies with blades. The hold their blades vertically or horizontally, and he has to swing where their blade isn't to hit. Much like the swordplay in Wii Sports Resort.
12:11PM "You can of course cut the grass as well... trees, too." Look out, Metal Gear Rising!
12:10PM Now he's fighting a rock-spitting enemy, using the shield to bounce the rocks back at it.
12:10PM He confused an eye set in a door with some sword-waving shenanigans.
12:10PM "If you hold up your sword to the sky it can charge up with the Power of the Sky, and then you can unleash 'Sword Beams'"
12:09PM He's fighting venus flytrap-style things with rotated mouths that require a specific angle of cut.
12:09PM "You can see the sword following my movements one to one..." (It's not that one to one.)
12:08PM Shake your right hand and a sword comes out, you can swing at any angle. Press the Z button to target in front of you.
12:08PM "Just imagine you're using a sword and shield yourself."
12:07PM Bill's going to do the translation. "So, I'll explain it in detail, but it's really not that difficult."
12:07PM "You know what, I think I'll explain it myself."
12:07PM Bill's not doing it right, Shigeru descends from the big screen and bursts onto stage!
12:06PM Now Bill Trinen is on stage to show actual gameplay.
12:06PM He's holding a real sword and shield. "In many ways, the history of Zelda has been refining the experience that makes these complicated mechanics more natural." He holds up the Wiimote and Nunchuck. The Wiimotion plus is for sword control and using items, while the nunchuck is used for raising up the shield.
12:04PM Miyamoto is on screen to introduce the game.
12:04PM Legend of Zelda, Skyward Sword
12:04PM "Nintendo is once again raising the bar on the experience. Let's begin with an experience you've been waiting for." It's Zelda!
12:03PM "Let me adjust that perspective... because technology is only a tool. The best product is always experience, and the best experiences only come when technology and game experience are a match."
12:02PM Reggie's talking TECH. "HD, 3D, Motion Control... and no control at all."
12:02PM (Have trouble with the livestream link? Trying refreshing and clicking again.)
12:02PM We're starting! Reggie Fil-Aime is out!
11:38AM We've got that livestream link up above if you're in a video mood. Our prose just isn't good enough for you, is it? We get it.
11:33AM The big screens are showing Nintendo trivia, and we're doing pretty bad. Do you know what's the first platform Wario appeared on? How much older is regular Link than Young Link? Hmm?
11:30AM We're seated at the huge-gantic Nokia Theater in beautiful, smoggy LA. It's as if the universe / Nintendo is trying to inform us of our insignificance... and doing a pretty bang up job of it. About 30 minutes until start time!