This year, E3 had one of those showing that only happens once every 8-10 years. E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, is the biggest video game conference in the world, and it's where game publishers show off what they're working on. E3 2014 was unique because it was the first one after the release of two major consoles--the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4. Developers got to show for the first time full portfolios dedicated to the new hardware, and it was glorious. There was a lot to see during both the Microsoft Xbox and Sony PlayStation media briefings, and Nintendo surprised many with game announcements of its own. I figured I'd whittle things down and share the ten games I was most excited about, in no particular order.
Nintendo has announced the Super Smash Bros. is coming to the Nintendo 3DS this summer, and Wii U later this winter. Both versions will heavily promote online play with friends through Nintendo's Miiverse, as well as through random matches with other players.
Nintendo also says it will monitor the behavior of online players, and will punish those who are a hindrance to others, including those who leave matches early, bully others, cheat, etc. Skill-based matchmaking will also be incorporated to keep things fair and fun.
The Nintendo 3DS version in particular will feature a new mode called Smash Run where up to four players get five minutes to team up and beat up enemies in exchange for power-ups. After five minutes is up, those power-ups are put into play, as the players engage in a battle against each other.
No specific release dates were given for either version of the game, but we'll likely get that information in a couple of months at E3.
Nintendo has announced that the next verion of Mario Kart is set for a spring 2014 release. Mario Kart 8 will be released on the Wii U, bringing new 3D effects and anti-gravity racing to Nintendo's struggling home console. Expect things like underwater racing, air gliging, motorcycles, and more. Nintendo even says that Miiverse will be deeply integrated into the title. Jump past the break for a look at the official trailer out of E3.
Nintendo has made a major announcement, saying that it will not be holding it's regular annual E3 media briefing this year. The E3 press conferences held by Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo are usually the highlight events of E3, setting the stage for the rest of the event by letting us know what each of the Big 3 have coming over the next year. With Wii U sales not meeting anywhere near Nintendo's expectations (and even falling short of the updated guidance,) alongside corporate reshuffling at Nintendo of America, one has to wonder if the move to not hold a major press event is because the company is putting out fires internally. Nintendo says that it will, instead, hold two smaller events at E3 for media and distributors, limited only to showing off new games.
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Microsoft has announced that it will reveal the next Xbox on May 21st at an event to take place at the Xbox campus in Redmond. Gamers have been patiently waiting for an announcement from Microsoft on the next Xbox (codenamed Durango,) especially after Sony announced the Playstation 4 at an event in February. The company says that the event will "mark the beginning of a new generation of games, TV, and entertainment." Aside from inviting select press to be on hand, the event will also be broadcast as it happens on Xbox LIVE for all to see. It'll also be broadcast on SPike TV for those who are in the US or Canada.
Don't expect all the info on the next Xbox to be revealed on the 21st, though. Microsoft says that they'll wait about three weeks before announcing the full line-up of games, which it'll do at E3. There's a lot riding on the next Xbox, which follows up the current generations most successful console, the Xbox 360.
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This morning Nintendo unveiled the Nintendo 3DS XL (or 3DS LL in Japan.) The console takes everything about the standard Nintendo 3DS, and makes it bigger. What you end up with is a 4.88-inch 3D display on top, and a 4.18-inch standard touch display on the bottom. Buyer also get a free 4 GB SD card included. In Japan, the 3DS LL will hit stores on July 28th for about 18,900 Yen ($235) while us 3DS XL buyers will have to wait until August 19th to get in on the action, where it'll cost $199.
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One of the updates you can expect when the Fall Xbox Dashboard Update drops is the addition of a web browser. That's right, after seven years, the Xbox 360 will finally be getting Internet Explorer. During the Microsoft E3 Media Briefing, it was mentioned that a browser would have been cumbersome previously, but with the introduction of the Xbox SmartGlass app alongside Kinect integration, users will be able to easily browse the web on their Xbox 360 console.
Nintendo just finished presenting its annual E3 Media Briefing, and they went all out on letting us know about the games that'll be coming to the Wii U console. In addition, the company put together a video tour of the Wii U GamePad itself, allowing gamers to learn more about the unique peripheral and all it can do. Get a look at the video above.
Sony may not have made mention of the Playstation Move Racing Wheel during its E3 Media Briefing, but the Playstation Blog has all the details on the accessory that's targeted at LittleBigPlanet Karting and other Move racers. The company says that the oddly-shaped Move Racing Wheel, saying that it will offer "precise motion tracking" despite its weird looks. You can pick one up in the fall for $39.99, but you'll need to supply your own Move controller to make use of it.
During the Sony E3 Media Briefing, it was announced that the Playstation Vita would be getting a new coat of paint, along with an exlusive bundle. The "crystal white" model will be Wi-Fi-only, and will ship with Assassin's Creed III: Liberation, along with a 4 GB memory card. Pricing has yet to be revealed, but that's probably because the PS Vita Assassin's Creed III bundle won't launch until October 30th, as that's the release date for the game.
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