It was hard not to be reminded of Monty Python's famous sketch when Sony took the stage Tuesday during its E3 press conference, assuring the public that the PSP platform was still alive, kicking, and very much a viable platform. The company is right, to a degree: millions still play PSP games and own systems, and the platform is far from a failure. On the other hand, the PSP has still never materialized into the superior do-everything portable Sony once dreamed of it becoming.
Besides directly taking on the Wii with Kinect, how else can Microsoft hope to compete with Sony and Nintendo--not to mention Apple--this holiday season? With its big guns, literally.
Microsoft's focus at this year's E3 was, not surprisingly, on its biggest franchises. The company's boast was that the 360 is the only place to have these experiences--which all involved gunplay--although one, Call of Duty: Black Ops, is multiplatform.
Metal Gear Solid Rising: Hideo Kojima's sword-based Metal Gear action game was shown briefly, with a heck of a lot of slicing to pieces and a requisite fruit-slicing … Read more
LOS ANGELES--Having just returned from the Microsoft world premiere event showing off the newly named Kinect camera for Xbox 360 (formerly known as Project Natal), we're left with a burning question. The games demoed at the event ran the gamut from titles that let you drive a car, boat, and mine cart--all with graphics that would make a Nintendo Wii blush. But cool hardware aside, who's going to want to play these games?
Behind the pomp and circumstance of packing a college arena with white-robed journalists and an entire troop of Cirque du Soleil dancers, the real stars of the evening were the Kinect camera and games. About half a dozen were demoed by a collection of faux families, some suspended upside down or in mid-air, but all the footage shown was clearly pretaped, and not an actual live use of the Kinect camera (which we admit would have been difficult with the light show and acrobatics going on at the same time).
However, as impressive as the event itself was, the first round of Kinect games demoed seemed, well, exactly like first-generation games. There were several variations on using your hands and body movements to drive a vehicle, from a car to a raft to a kind of mine cart (with your avatar body on top, contorting to grab icons).
More promising was a yoga app, as well as a virtual pet. At the event, we actually snagged a tiny stuffed animal, which included a scannable code--we assume it would then place that particular animal in the game (which is called Kinanimals). Somewhat more strained was a follow-the-moves dance game, but given the success of television programs such as "So You Think You Can Dance," we may be on the wrong side of the cultural zeitgeist on that one.
But after all those game presentations, we're struck by how similar they are to games we've already seem for platforms including the PlayStation EyeToy (which originated on the PS2 in 2004) and Nintendo Wii. The EyeToy is a particularly apt comparison as it also used only hand and body movements, not a control stick like the Wii or upcoming PlayStation Move. … Read more
This week on preGAME, we gear up for gaming's biggest show of the year, E3. On today's episode we'll run down every last prediction and anticipated game we're looking forward to at E3 2010, from each of the three major press conferences to the individual titles themselves.
First up for debate is Microsoft. It sounds like we'll finally get an official name for Project Natal, as well as some game announcements made for the motion-capturing hardware. We also think we'll see an Xbox 360 Slim announced at the company's press conference; maybe there'… Read more
Jasmine's (mostly) back from vacation, and already hates the iPhone 4. To balance out her blind rage for the as-yet unreleased device, Eric and Donald tackle Crave stories ranging from monkey-controlled robots, laser drug injection, and a Lego printer that drives ladies wild (or not). Stick around for the end, and you may just see Darth Vader's cleavage.Subscribe in iTunes SD Video | Subscribe in RSS SD Video… Read more
You're going to have to listen to the show to understand the evolution of our favorite new phrase, "mucho bogo." Speaking of evolution, the HTC EVO 4G is officially available, just in time to be stomped into dust by the forthcoming iPhone. Maybe. Also, Google's going to hand over its intercepted WiFi data, to make a bad problem worse, and we're giving a big (BIG) no to the Kno.Subscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (640x360) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS (640x360)… Read more
BioDefense: Zombie Outbreak is a one-player zombie-survival game that mixes elements of real-time strategy with an open-map tower-defense game.
The core of BioDefense is a survival mode, in which you protect your base from random waves of zombies. You have to juggle several interdependent factors as you construct and defend your base: you have to build collectors on top of "toxium" deposits (toxium is the game's currency, and a finite resource on the map), but you can only build where you have light--so you also need to build spotlights. Predictably, spotlights are fragile, so you need to … Read more
Yoda, Boba Fett, Darth Vader and a Stormtrooper can grace your cookie jar, provided you have the Star Wars Cookie Cutters. While these four figures might not have been my first choices as far as Star Wars characters I'd like to nibble on, this set of four does make for some great treats. Each cookie cutter measures between 2.5 inches and 4 inches wide. They're available through Williams-Sonoma.
The Star Wars Cookie Cutters don't just cut an outline in your cookie dough: the edges of the cutters create the shape of the dough but you then … Read more
Mozilla's Firefox was born during a time when Microsoft's Internet Explorer had grown so fat and lazy that hacking off a massive chunk of its market share was almost a moral duty, one with a built-in fan club. "Anything but IE" was the mantra for some, and Mozilla delivered with aplomb.
That was then, this is now, and "now" is bound to be much, much harder.
Heavy Gunner 3D is a satisfying if repetitive sci-fi-themed arcade shooter with short, fast-paced levels and an RPG-style system for buying and upgrading weaponry.
Heavy Gunner 3D's most striking feature is its 3D-ness: from your fixed first-person perspective, you look down the barrels of your two guns (one on the left, one on the right, controlled with touch-screen thumb-joysticks), but you can tilt left or right to rotate your view 360 degrees, and you can tilt forward and back to look up and down. This makes for physically involving gameplay, as you rack up kills and chains on large … Read more