Ubisoft now. Last one of the day. Tomorrow is Sony and Nintendo.
Ubi is opening with a mix of game shots – Ninja Turtles, Avatar, Rayman, etc.
The Soup’s Joel McHale? Whyyyyyy. I can’t stand this guy’s show. His kids are distracting him from his gaming time…which is funny, but…. Man I really don’t like this guy. Why is he introducing Ubi games? It’s basically a stand up comedy routine. He’s going to introduce someone but is joking about how he can’t reveal the name for whatever silly reason. And here comes the CEO, Yves Guillemot. Very heavy French accent, a little hard to understand.
Talking about…media conversions. Bridging the creative talents. I’m feeling bad because I can barely understand what this guy is saying. It sounds like he just said they created Bill Gates. Oh, now he’s talking about U Play. Allows consumers to create content to share. U share, U win, U help (will let someone help you if you get stuck in a game), and U shop. That’s cool. Launch at the end of the year for Assassin’s Creed, Splinter Cell and Avatar. Creating bridges with Lightstorm and Fox. Probably going to see some Avatar footage later.
Oh, there’s been a merger of talent. They’re going to work with Peter Jackson and Steven Spielberg for Paramount’s Tin Tin (?). Now he’s talking about exploring technological break throughs (Wii mote, DS, iPhone).
Redsteel 2. Rayman and Shaun White, big sellers. Now talking about using cameras and microphones. Sounds like what MS was showing off during their conference. Wanting to be mass market, expand the gaming market, etc.
Managing director Yannis Mallat is here to talk about (in a much easier to understand accent) shaping the industry. Achieving true content convergence with Ubisoft digital arts. He’s talking about their work on movie special effects. Like James Cameron’s Avatar. He is thrilled to announce today that they are “devlahping” over 100 shots for the film. Ubisoft Digital Arts working on real time engines with pre-render technology (like AC) for movies. Assassin’s Creed 2 short movies….live action? For promotion. That sounds awesome, I can’t wait. Is Ubi trying to be the new WETA Digital? Ubi is becoming a full 360 (degree, not Xbox) development company (meaning branching out into many technologies and media areas).
James Cameron is here. Wow, there is some serious star power at E3 this year. He’s here, of course, to talk about Avatar. Every time I hear about this game I always think “The Last Airbender.” He’s talking about how when he first created this 15 years ago he was told it would be impossible with the current technology, so now he’s out to try again. He’s describing the film’s setting and characters – a forested moon called Pandora. Avatars are hybrid human and…the race they’ve created (which I can’t spell…Navid maybe, Navee). ….Good gracious he’s going over the whole freakin’ plot of this thing. I’m glad he’s excited but uh, leave us some film to watch, you know? Took him 9 years to develop some of this film technology. Sounds awfully impressive. How ‘bout showing us some? No, now he’s going on about picking the right video game company (Ubi, obviously). James, dear, we don’t have this kind of attention span (or I don’t anyway). Talking about developing a game both similar to and separate from the movie. Boy, 2 years of this, 4 years of that. This movie/game must be freakin’ amazing for all the time being sunk into it. Talking about working together hand in hand with Ubisoft to develop the game and film; some back and forth aid. Oh the movie is in 3D, so he wanted to get Ubi to make the game in 3D and…they went for it. Man, Cameron is really long winded. How about some footage of this amazing film/game? No…but he is telling us the game won’t contain movie spoilers (it comes first). And on and on and on. He’s getting a little repetitive now. Demo available this week. OH FINALLY. I have great respect for him but geez! That went on forever.
And here’s Joel again. ….. Wait all of that and no footage, WTF? Joel is afraid of the French guys. So, did they bring this guy in to tell jokes to wake them up after Cameron’s loooooooong speech? Too bad he’s not that interesting either. He’s talking about Redsteel 2 and Wii Motion Plus. FINALLY a trailer of something. A guy is swinging the Wiimote around (big sweeping motions) while the character in the game slices up some baddies. Graphics look good. He’s having a sword fight with a bad guy now, switches to a gun, and blows him away.
Creative director, Jason Vanderburg (that is NOT how it’s spelled) for RS2, with the lead designer. They’re going to do a live demo. Character is being dragged on the ground behind a motorcycle and you have to dogdge various things, like oncoming traffic and burning barrels. Neat looking cut scene, looks a little cell shaded. Some first person action with the sword. It’s mapped 1:1 with the Wiimote. So like Twilight Princess but way more movements and more precise, and it also measures the force you swing with. You can quickly switch back and forth between sword and gun. Looks like he’s moving the character around with the nun chuck. “We really believe that hitting things is fun.” Like doors apparently. Oh that was rad. He threw a guy up in the air, then jumped up and slashed down at him. This is really cool looking; it’s very responsive as well (and 60 frames per second, Jason says). Game will be bundled with Wii Motion Plus at launch.
Joel again. Blah blah lame attempts at jokes. More Shaun White is coming. Ought to work with Tony Hawk to use that skateboard peripheral, but then, they have the balance board with the Wii already. The new Tony Hawk game will be a good competitor for this.
Soccer, Academy of Champions. And here’s…Pele, a big time soccer player apparently. Some technical difficulties here. Joel jokes “The game does much more than this, right Pele?” Pele asks Joel if he speaks Portuguese or Spanish while they try to make the trailer work. Pele jokes that he doesn’t speak English (oh so this girl is his interpreter). Pele is doing really well with English for someone who can’t speak English. Oh, now he’s not speaking English anymore. Pele is happy to be there. Pele is talking about how important soccer (futbol) is to him. Joel shuts up (hooray) and lets the guy talk. Pele talks about how important children are. And now he’s talking about the game in general, and how happy he is to work on it. And now the trailer. Rated E for “comic mischief.” It looks like it’s about kids at a Harry Potter type school for soccer. It’s exactly like Harry Potter for Soccer. Clearly something meant to be cute and fun for kids than a serious soccer game.
“The only guy back there not speaking French” jokes Joel as he unfortunately takes over again. Talking about reinventing a successful product. Introducing…producer and creative director for Splinter Cell – Alex Parizeu and Max Beland, with French last names I can’t spell. Saw Splinter Cell earlier during MS’s conference, minus the adorable French guys. But that’s OK, because it looks totally bad ass. Oh the targeting thing is called “mark and execute.” It looks like it works really well. Joel is super excited, he seems to be a fan of the series. Max is going to play a demo. This is all the same stuff from earlier today. Sam is on his own in this one, looking for his daughter’s killer.
Joel is back making more bad jokes. Evolving interfaces. What is this? Ruse? Something about commanding armies, so probably a strategy game. Two way too intense guys are fighting a battle with a navy assaulting a beach. It’s a cool looking trailer; they’re moving their pieces around on a tabletop screen (not how the game works but it’s a neat effect). It’s a RTS. Joel makes more bad jokes.
Joel said “the industry’s fastest growing category: casual games.” NOOOOO. *sigh* A single guy claps for his “game packages are hard to open” joke. Sr VP of marketing Tony Key. Says he wanted to present the biggest seller. Asked the audience what the biggest seller was; I think someone said “Petz.” It’s Imagine. Oh joy. Pokemon, Imagine, Brain Age, Petz, Mario Kart, DS top brands. *sigh* Ubisoft tween games 2.0. Ugh geez. Tony says everyone wants to copy Ubisoft. By making games for little girls? Well EA had a whole to-do about them, so maybe so. *bangs head on table* Blah blah blah blah. Oh look, take a picture of yourself with your DSi and give yourself a makeover. Make crappy jewelry with your DS then order it in real life! The stars of Petz 2009. It has stars? Oh they’re hamsters or something. Teach your pets to become super stars! Oh it’s a new tween brand – Style Lab. Tony is definitely a sales guy, he’s pitching this stuff hard.
“What is the fastest growing genre over the last 12 months.” Fitness apparently. Felicia Williams, lead content designer, working with cameras in games. Sounds very similar to what EA is doing with Active. Tony makes a bad joke about the camera adding 10 lbs. What camera do they keep talking about? The MS camera I guess? Burn! She’s saying you shouldn’t have to use balance boards and wii motes, but your own personal exercise equipment or nothing at all. She basically said “all those others are not realistic and they suck.” Theirs is called Your Shape for the Wii…with a camera (so they’re competing with Wii Fit and EA Active). So not the MS camera. What camera? I guess…OH there we go, lol. It comes with the game. It scans your body, then you select the body area you want to work on, and it tells you what to do. A very chipper girl demos the game in a video. Why are all these fitness games on the Wii? Wii Fit, EA Active, Your Shape, all on the Wii. Where the market is I guess; lots of families have one.
Joel is back agaaaaain. Introducing Rabbids Go Home and Adrian Lacey. PLEASE stop making the Ryan Seacrest jokes Joel. Adrian runs out pushing a Rabbid in a shopping cart, and being chased by another. Boy Adrian is EXCITED. So you use shopping carts to collect stuff and build things. This is a cute trailer. A Rabbid jumps out at some poor kid grocery shopping. Havoc ensues and the Rabbids steal everything from cars to clothes from the humans. Now they’re gonna demo the game. Adrian is doing some jokes about Rabbids invading the Wii mote or something. He is way too into this. Bunny abuse is perfectly legal, as this guy throws a Rabbid around a closed space. You can customize your own Rabbid that will appear in the game and in cut scenes. Alright, I’m way bored now. It’s kind of funny, but I’m not really interested. You run around, collect things, run over people. You can also customize your cart. Did he just call it a “Wiimoot?” The Rabbids knocked an engine off an airplane and attached it to their cart for crazy movement. Ah, they’re done
Joel came back to introduce Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and NA Pres. Laurent Detoc. Another French guy. Oi, how long had I been sitting here? Boooring. He’s introducing some Game Arts people in the audience. Trailer. Leo and Shredder. Splinter and April. Mikey and Don. Play anyone, it says. Fight everyone. Have a brawl. It looks like Smash Brothers with Turtles. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Smash-Up. Those graphics are…not that good. Sept. 22.
Big titles? OH OH a sequel to a multi award winning title. It’s No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle. Now I want my boyfriend to shut up. He keeps making sarcastic comments and I can’t hear anything, lol. OK he went away. Anyway, I wasn’t at all interested in No More Heroes the first time so…I don’t really care this time either. Here is Tetsuya Yamiguchi (Mizuguchi?) (in the audience). Uh…so they said “Hey we’re making No More Heroes 2 but we’re not telling you anything about it.” Oooook.
Assassin’s Creed 2 now. Seriously this game is looking way sweet. “We are going to unveil something very, very surprising to me. I could not believe the quality of the visuals.” Oh? SHOW US. Yes, I know you sold millions of them (over 8 to be exact). November 17! Yay. Here’s a trailer. 1486 Venice, Italy. It’s a Carnival. Some guys in masks are standing around. And here he comes. Fireworks going off. Stabbed in the face! Er, neck. Blood gushing out. And there’s Ezio with a slow smile (oh he’s handsome, yay!). And another smirk as he stabs some guy with a pole. He’s jumping around (btw, you can swim in this one). This is gorgeous. OH YEAH. Yeah you don’t diss on his momma. He will stab you. He shot the blade out of his glove. Kick ass.
Good way to end the conference, with a bang. That was pretty much totally boring. Nintendo and Sony, tomorrow morning.