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Tycho / on Wed, May 22 2002 at 11:42 pm

Uh

Okay.  I either won the contest, or Monkey’s dead.  In which case, I win.

(CW)TB

Tycho / on Wed, May 22 2002 at 11:41 pm

Hot Damn

It’s really a race, now, between Monkey and myself, to finish our posts and be counted on the front page.

I must admit that neither of us are particularly well equipped to grapple with this task, as we had the poor sense to attend Microsoft’s E3 festivities after the show - as a result, we have arrived at our hotel somewhere around two o’clock in the morning.  I thought of so many things to tell you while I was at this event; the woman who stamped my wrist had the warmest hands I’ve ever felt, Garbage appeared for some inexplicable, surreal concert, I shook CliffyB’s hand but didn’t have the sack to engage him in a conversation regarding Bombing Run.  Also, I had the good luck to meet up with one Greg Kasavin, who is so hot he could melt a stick of butter next-door.  Check this shit out.

OMFG!

I think of drinking as taking an advance on future happiness in exchange for a short term, high interest loan on your physical well-being.  I’m being perfectly honest when I say that I am not able to rightly enumerate the beverages I consumed, I can only say that I think “open bars” are a dangerous concept in desperate need of regulation.  It’s probably a good thing I didn’t talk to Peter Molyneux when I saw him, I can’t think of any way that could have ended with my purity still intact.

Everyone else seems to have said what they came away with most impressed, but I’m actually having a hard time with that at the moment.  That’s not the Midori sour, or the whiskey sour, or the other whiskey sour, or the gin and tonic, or any of the other drinks talking, either.  It’s just been such a full day that I’m having a hard time quantifying the whole shebang.  One thing I can tell you for certain:  Cel-shading is here to stay.  I’ve seen so much cel-shaded shit this year I could get sick and throw up.  It’s not the games’ fault, and I recognize that, but it’s like some kind of unstoppable force on the showfloor.  Also, I haven’t seen everything by Activision, EA, or Ubi Soft yet, which will be good fodder for tomorrow night.  Anyhow, let’s talk turkey.

I think that the new Zelda is something that needs to be seen to be believed, and needs to be played to be understood.  If you have done both and not come away impressed, I think that you need a new hobby.  I’m not kidding.  When something this great comes along, and you’re simply to jaded to appreciate it, there’s other things you could be doing you might derive more pleasure from. 

I must say, I’m quite impressed with what the U.S. Army has to offer.  They have funding for an additional five years, and virtually every gameplay concept we had is on the boards to be implemented at some point on the timeline - but the product they’ll deliver at launch, the completely free product I might add, with as many as twenty maps out the gate - is nothing to sneeze at either.  It goes gold in early June, you’ll get a chance to see what I’ve seen before too much time has elapsed. 

Obviously, I’ve got to stick with Jew on the Silent Hill 3 thing.  His description of events is quite accurate.  We’ll be on the floor tomorrow - I don’t mean on the showfloor, I mean on the actual floor, sitting like children at storytime - watching the fairly short cinema Konami has on display, but sadly it’s not anywhere we can get our hands on it.  I can quite comfortably say that the Silent Hill series has gripped me in ways that changed my perceptions of the medium itself.  I’m in for a penny, in for a pound with this shit.  I think Silent Hill is a bold, modern series that doesn’t bother to shy away from provocative, mature themes.  They’re great.  Can I be optimistic about a game I don’t know anything about yet?  Yes!

Though I’ll be getting a chance to play it in depth tomorrow, what I’ve already seem of Hunter:  The Reckoning leads me to believe that, like myself, development team High Voltage loathes the undead. 

From what I’ve read, the core development studio behind “Commandos” (a personal favorite) is behind Duality, whose major tenets will be familiar to anyone familiar with cyberpunk fiction or roleplaying.  Playing as a mercenary, a hacker, or what they’re calling a “virtual being,” it’s up to you to look and act cool in ways beyond the most unhinged fantasies of celluloid.  You can actually download what we saw right at your house, just poke around for the Duality E3 Trailer and you’ll be set up.  From the same publisher, “Strident” also looks stylish, clean, and promising. 

Only a couple kiosks had it, but Red Dead Revolver was amazing to look at.  A Wild West, six-shooting blast-‘em-up, Capcom has done their genre homework, given it a unique twist, and bolstered the concept with high production values.  It looks like something that is simultaneously an homage and the apex of the Western form.  I’m sure there’s video for you to download somewhere. 

Lots of other stuff, I mean, it’s nice to see Contra back again, and with the classic perspectives and gameplay that made the title a synonym for “action.”  Neverwinter Nights is too rich to depict, I’ll be writing about my experiences with it in fairly rigorous detail for Amazon, so I’ll just link that after I submit it.  Haven’t seen Doom III yet, but I’ve heard it leaves no ass unkicked.

(CW)TB out.

anon / on Wed, May 22 2002 at 11:40 pm

Day 1!

As is the case with most of my life, today was a blur for the most part.  I was a bit more wary this year however after my initial excitement over State of Emergency last year.  BOY did THAT come back to kick me squaw in the balls.  Why they always gotta hurt me?  Speaking of hurting me in the bathing suit area, HERE COMES METAL GEAR SOLID 2 AGAIN!! “Metal Gear Solid 2:SUBSTANCE”  What?  They finally put some in?  IT’S FUNNY BECAUSE IT’S TRUE.  I know you’ll all buy it again anyway.  Just thinking about it makes me want to cry.  I hate you all so much.

Now I go on about the games that have stuck out in my mind as real pants-pitching grabbers!

Shinobi for PS2.  You make me happy, when skies are gray.  You’ll never know dear, how much I love you.  Please don’t take my Sega away.

Zelda for GC.  I didn’t say anything when those screenshots came out because I wanted to wait and see.  I have very little faith for just about everything, but when it comes to anything Link-related I don’t bat an eye.  All I have to say is Zelda is the only reason I bought a N64, and this Zelda is why I’m going to buy a GC now.  To everyone that said they thought it looked horrible?  You’re dead fucking wrong.  It’s God Damn FANTASMICAL.  Gabe overheard two fire-breathing shit-eaters make a snide comment about the graphics.  I don’t know how anyone could be that stupid and stubborn with something like that right in front of them.  OH NO WAIT, yes I do!  The kind of fucking idiots that breathe fire and eat shit.  Good God, it’s an amazing piece of work.  Everyone shut up, wait and see.  If you don’t think it’s groin-grabbingly good, you probably breath fire and eat shit.  Even though that’s my opinion PLEASE FEEL FREE TO SEND ME RETARDED HATE MAIL “CORRECTING” ME, THX.

Silent Hill 3!  Tycho and I gripped each other in glee when we saw them playing a cut scene on the giant Konami screen with “Silent Hill 3” in red at the bottom of the screen.  We’re very, very happy.  We had been talking about how scrumptious it would be if we got to E3 and they just announced that YES a new Silent Hill game would be coming!  Not only did we get that, but we also got to see the proof up on a giant screen!  Honestly, we don’t know anything other than the fact that the main character in this one is a woman.  That’s really more than enough for me though.  SILENT HILL 3.

Virtually EVERYTHING I saw at the Phantagram booth!  Who are these people?  Where did they come from?  I’ve never even heard of them before today but they’ve already secured a place on my list of people to hug before I die.  Go look at their site.  Seriously.  Holy SHIT, Duality for PC looked absolutely incredible!  Phantom Crash and Strident looked good enough to almost make me want to buy an X-box!  And having R-Type III for GBA on their list?  God damn.  Again, go check out what they have.  Seriously, YOU GO NOW

Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters MELEE for GC!!  It’s a Godzilla game!!  You would think that would be enough for me but so far its also an ass-load of fun!  Who woulda thunk it?  A fun Godzilla game!  What is the world coming to?  Oh, and when I say “ass-load” I mean that in a good way!

 

Dear Konami,
I just wanted to write you to say I was really angry when I saw that you’re churning out Metal Gear Solid 2 again, but when I saw a trailer for Silent Hill 3 I knew I couldn’t stay mad at you anymore.

Love, Batjew

Gabe / on Wed, May 22 2002 at 11:38 pm

Who needs sleep?

E3 means Penny Arcade’s E3 Sketchbook! Today’s comic concerns the US Army game.

It never quite sinks in that I am actually going to E3 until the night before the show. I can hardly sleep as visions of amazing new games dance through my head. The night seems to drag on forever as I constantly check the hotel alarm clock every five minutes. From the time the alarm does finally go off to the time I fall back into bed at night exhausted the day is pretty much a blur. The first day is always like that. We zip around trying to take in as much off the show as we can. Then we spend the next two days standing in lines, spending more time with certain games and investigating new titles. When I think back on today there are a few titles that really stick out. So here are my top five games of the show so far.

1. Panzer Dragoon orta

If you know me you know I am a Nintendo/Sega fan boy at heart. I’ve made my opinions on the X Box pretty clear. Well, I am going to buy an X Box for Panzer Dragoon. It’s just that good. Judging from the rest of the games I saw there it may very well be the only game I own for the system for quite some time, but it will be well worth it.

2. Zelda

This game looks fucking amazing. I’d say it was the best looking game I saw at the Show today. I would also say it’s probably the best looking game I’ve ever seen in my entire goddamned life. We all just stood there mesmerized by it, with our mouths wide open. Until you have seen this game running you cannot possibly comprehend how gorgeous it is. It’s like a big “fuck you” to all the people who bitched about the cartoon look. 

3. Shinobi

You can run on the walls while you throw blades at ninjas and then they freeze and then you can jump down and teleport all around them while you cut them up with your sword and they get cut in half and blood pours out and you steal their soul and you have this like cape that whips all around while you run and you have like six eyes and it’s really cool.

4. Americas Army

Seriously, who better to make a military squad based shooter than the fucking military? This game not only looked good but it had the features to back it up. Finally a game gives you the opportunity to use silent hand commands to communicate with your team. Realistic objectives, weapons, movement, and locations, everything in this game is as real as you can get. Each weapon operates just as it would in real life. Stand to close to a flash back and say good buy to your hearing for while. Shoot to many of your teammates and end up in jail. Try and use a sniper rifle without going prone and watch as your view bobs up and down with your breathing. You also get twenty some odd maps with expansive real world environments and kick ass objectives. Oh and then there’s the fact that it’s FREE!

5. Sly Cooper

I was expecting another cutesy cell shaded platform game. What I got was Metal Gear solid only with a good story, interesting environments, great control, and a main character I actually cared about even if he was a raccoon.

I am sure the other guys will be along shortly with their impressions from the show. Tomorrow we see Doom III and Star Wars Galaxies. I’m tired as hell but I know I won’t sleep.

-Gabe out

Tycho / on Tue, May 21 2002 at 11:12 pm

We’re Not Dead

In fact, we’re quite the opposite.

Kiko, Batjew, Gabe, and Monkey are all over on the hotel TV doing the Super Smash Brothers thing, Kiko in his wisdom brought the Cube.  From where I’m sitting, it would appear that Gabe is reprising his role as “Pikacheap.” 

We’re seeing BioWare today around lunchtime, going to get up in that Neverwinter Nights action and see what we can see.  In addition, I guess it’s okay to say who our other appointment is with, since they’ve put out a press release - it’s the U.S. (Fucking) Army, who is putting their efforts toward some sort of military FPS.  Finally, an expenditure of public funds I wholly authorize.   

I’m completely exhausted.  I don’t know how you can get so tired sitting in one place.  I’m going to sleep.

(CW)TB out. 




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