For the past three years Nintendo’s E3 press conferences have defined the word “disappointment”, however this year things are set to be different! For starters their conference will be 2 hours long which is double the length that is usually is, not only that but Nintendo are so confident in their ability to deliver a stellar performance that will be live streaming the event on their official website. No one knows exactly what will go down once Reggie and co. take the stage on June 15th but I have compiled a list of a few things I would personally like to see. So in no particular order let’s begin…
3D That Works!
Just yesterday I was given the opportunity to sample Panasonic’s newest 3D Ready television. The brief demo I received was in a controlled environment with a sales rep telling me how “revolutionary” their product is but for me it was still an awful experience. The 3D effects only worked when I was directly in front of the screen with my eyes focused on the exact spot that the movie wanted me to focus on, which is hardly practical for casual family viewing. Watching Avatar via IMAX was a phenomenal experience but on a “3D capable” TV it was a pain in the ass that felt more like an optical illusion than anything else. It’s clear that 3D still has long way to go so the fact that Nintendo are releasing a 3D focused Handheld as early as next Spring scares the hell out of me.
I have faith though; Nintendo introduced Touch Screen technology to the masses in 2004 and now any device that doesn’t respond to touch commands feels archaic. Nintendo then went on to pioneer motion controls with the launch of the Wii and now we have Project Natal and Sony’s Move as a result. With this in mind the thought of them finally cracking stereoscopic 3D shouldn’t be too hard to fathom. Eliminating the need to wear specially equipped glasses was Step 1 and I can’t wait to see the rest of their journey.
Wii MotionPlus PLUS!
For the past 4 years Nintendo has been bragging about how their system offers the most precise controls on the market. Whether this is true or not is arguable (especially amongst forum kids) but come Fall 2010 Nintendo will once again be lagging behind the completion. Microsoft’s Project Natal is far more innovative and has a wider mainstream appeal while Sony’s Move is just simply better. Even with Wii MotionPlus Nintendo won’t be able to keep up with their competitors and with MotionPlus less than a year old it would be foolish for Nintendo to release another mandatory peripheral to further segment their user base. Even so there is still plenty that the Big N could do to make their controller feel less dated.
Incorporating Wii MotionPlus in to the actual remote seems like a no brainer. Having to attach a small piece of plastic, wrapped in a giant rubber casing to your controller is a pain, especially since you constantly have to remove it whenever you want to play a game which requires you to hold the Wiimote sideways. A standard sized controller that has MotionPlus built in would also create the perception that MotionPlus is an integral part of the system, rather than just a tacked on peripheral. Other small adjustments such as the inclusion of an internal, rechargeable battery and a Wireless Nunchuck would also be ideal.
Let’s face it, Mario will always be geared towards a younger audience and not enough people care about Metroid for it to be Nintendo’s answer to Halo. Therefore if Nintendo wanted to make a mature, epic title that was on the same “holy shit did that really just happen?” scale as GoW 3 or Modern Warfare 2 their best bet would be with a new Zelda title. As much as I love Zelda I’m admittedly growing wary of them repeating the same formula over and over again. Young guy who is secretly a descendant of a legendary hero embarks on an adventure through Fire, Water, Ice, Sand etc. To save a kidnapped Princess… yada, yada.
It’s time Nintendo decided to blow our minds with what is unarguably their greatest franchise and show us that they can compete on the same level as Sony and Microsoft when it comes to first party software. The first two God of War and Halo titles proved that epic games could be made using last generation technology so there really is no excuse for Nintendo not to conjure up something amazing!
Look, I’m not one to pre-judge a piece of equipment just because I’m not creative enough to think of any viable uses for it but for the Wii Vitality Sensor I’ll make an exception. The Vitality Sensor is a stupid waste of space which has yet to show any signs of further development since it was announced one year ago. Who knows, maybe Wii Fit Plus: Vitality Edition will be released in the Fall and go on to sell 25million copies but look around you Nintendo, your E3 crowd doesn’t care. If you choose to devote time to the Vitality Sensor during your Media Summit just make it brief before we all start losing vitality and fall asleep in our chairs.
…And One Last Thing!
Nintendo makes awesome games we all know that, but it’s about time that at least one third party developer follows suits. Nintendo needs to announce one huge megaton as a Grand Finale (ala Microsoft’s FFXIII bombshell) to remind us all that the Wii is in the same race as the 360 and PS3. Imagine if Rockstar took the stage at the tail end of Nintendo’s conference to announce that GTA 6 (or Vice City II) would be coming exclusively to the Wii, or what if Bungie revealed that their next title was not coming to 360 but is actually for Nintendo’s little white box instead?
These are things that gamers would NEVER see coming, but why not? The Wii is on route to becoming the best selling console of all time so why is it treated like the ugly step sister? I understand that developers may be hesitant to start working on a technologically inferior console that has an unorthodox control method but this is where Nintendo should step in with a gigantic cheque to convince them.
In just under a week the Nintendo press conference will take place and I’m almost certain that nothing I wrote in this article will actually happen but for now I will continue to keep hope alive. Nintendo will change our perception of them at this year’s E3, the only question is will it be for better or worse?