Monday, June 4, 2012

Seven Things I Want Announced At E3

Yes my friends, it’s that time of the year again. A time for us to all huddle around our computer screens for four whole days and watch as our favorite developers and studios go up on stage to either embarrass themselves or blow us all away. I’m of course talking about E3. When it comes to the gaming world, nothing is bigger than E3. All the developers get together and announce all kinds of new stuff to knock our nerdy little socks off. Well, unless you’re Valve.

You're a wizard, Eric...
This year’s E3 is already underway, with Microsoft’s conference already taking place, offering little fanfare and nothing interesting except Halo 4 and a South Park RPG. However, all the other companies have still yet to go so might as well get some last minute speculation in there. Here are seven things I’d love to see announce at E3. Now, I tried to be a little realistic here. No ridiculous pipedreams like an Elite Beat Agents sequel or even a Smash Bros. announcement. Just going with things that seem plausible. (For the most part.)

 7. Spyro/Crash Bandicoot/Lara Croft in Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale

We need her for, um, reasons.
Now, I’m sure you’ve all seen or at least heard about Sony’s Smash Bros. rip-off with the unnecessarily long title. Well, so far, it looks pretty promising though it doesn’t have my full attention yet. I just can’t bring myself to care as much about Sony’s character as I can Nintendo’s or Capcom’s. But, that said, it does look like a good time. However, if Sony really wants to win me over, they need to go back to their roots and include the characters that helped them rise to prominence. I’m talkin’ Spyro the Dragon, Crash Bandicoot and Lara Croft. Okay, sure, none of these characters belong to Sony anymore. In fact, Crash isn’t doing much of anything these days but they were big names back when the Playstation was brand new. Crash was treated like their mascot, the Spyro games were Sony’s answer to Super Mario 64 and Tomb Raider had some of the best reviewed action/adventure games of the time, certainly paving way for the Uncharted series. It’s very likely one of or even all three of these characters will make it in but if they really want me to care, they need to let me know for sure that they’re in. Parappa and Sweet Tooth are great, but show some love to those who helped you get your feet off the ground, Sony. Also, if you put in Spyro, please don’t make him look like the Skylanders version. Yuck.

6. Localization of Japanese 3DS Titles

I'm tryin' REAL hard to kill this Zombie...
The 3DS had some pretty amazing games released for it in the last year. Super Mario 3D Land, Mario Kart 7, Kid Icarus: Uprising but there’s a few games coming out or that have come out overseas that we’d really like to see over here. I’m talking specifically about Monster Hunter and the upcoming Project X Zone. Both games target the more “hardcore” audience and both games are desired by fans of the franchises involved. The Monster Hunter games may not have the fanbase over here that they have in Japan, but it’s hard to deny that people would buy it and play it, especially if they added online and brought over that fancy special edition 3DS it had. Project X Zone would also really make some fans happy. Who doesn’t want to see Ryu, Frank West, Mega Man X, Ulala, and those Tekken guys team up and beat up some baddies, RPG style? Both games are quite the longshot to come over here, but with games like Xenoblade Chronicles, The Last Story and Theaterhythm Final Fantasy getting US releases despite what everybody thought would happen, it’s not completely out of the question. Oh and bring Pandora’s Tower over too. Please?

5. Anything Mega Man

Oh great, here come the tears.
Capcom, do we need to spell it out for you? All we want is Mega Man. Why can’t we have anything related to Mega Man? It is his 25th anniversary and you just keep ignoring him like he doesn’t exist. Give us something, Capcom. We beg of you. Give us Mega Man 11, Mega Man X9, Mega Man Legends 3 back from the grave, hell, create a new Mega Man experience all together. We don’t care, just give us something. We’re dyin’ over here!

4. Wii-U Third Party Support

Yes, really.
Nintendo is the best in the business when it comes to developing games for their own consoles. Too bad they can’t seem to catch a break when it comes to other developers making good games for their consoles. Ever since the Nintendo 64, Nintendo’s biggest problem has been their lack of third party support. Mario, Zelda, Pokémon and Metroid might be able to move units and keep their core audience happy but it’s not going to attract all of the potential gamers they want. They need a strong third party line-up to keep gamers happy when there isn’t a Mario or a Zelda coming out. While the 3DS is trying to get back on the right track with franchises like Resident Evil, Street Fighter, Metal Gear Solid, Sonic the Hedgehog and Kingdom Hearts, they’re not quite there yet. The Wii-U is also looking pretty promising with Batman: Arkham City, Assassin’s Creed and several others but what it really needs is Call of Duty. Now you can scuff and snarl all you want, but it’s true. Call of Duty is the biggest franchise right now and if they could get Black Ops 2 at launch, it could be a huge help. Yes, Call of Duty games were released throughout the Wii’s lifecycle but you likely don’t know that because they never advertised for them and they were gimped versions of their HD counterparts. Black Ops 2 on the Wii-U needs to be the same game that the other consoles are getting. Sure, if you want to throw in a Wii-U gimmick or two as an optional thing, go for it but you need to advertise that it’s the same great experience with the same online features to get people to care. You need third party support, Nintendo, and like it or not, Call of Duty is a good place to start.

3. Kingdom Hearts 3

It's just been so long.
Okay, yes, this one is a bit of a longshot, especially considering Dream Drop Distance isn’t even out here yet but I’m sick of waiting. The Kingdom Hearts franchise is one of my all-time favorites but ever since Kingdom Hearts 2 was released in 2004, the franchise has went everywhere but forwards with the plot. There’s been prequels, midquels but no sequel. Dream Drop Distance is actually set after the second game, so that’s a positive thing but it’s not exactly Kingdom Hearts 3. I want a real KH3, no stupid subtitle, no playing as Roxas or Ventus or whatever. Just give me Sora, Donald and Goofy, have me visit a bunch of cool new worlds and have it in sweet, sweet HD. Don’t get me wrong, I desperately await the arrival of Dream Drop Distance, it looks amazing but I want a real Kingdom Hearts 3. Not a game that wants to be KH3 but isn’t. I mean, it is the franchises 10 year anniversary after all, Square. Make it happen. We’ve all been waiting so long. 

2. A Nintendo Franchise Revival

I'd settle for a Captain Falcon solo outing.
Nintendo has so many franchises, it’s hard to keep track sometimes but if you’ve only been playing Nintendo games for the last generation, you’d think they only had like, six. It’s time that some of those lesser franchises came out and played with the Wii-U or even the 3DS. The announced Pikmin 3 and the ever popular Kid Icarus: Uprising is a good start but what about some others? How about F-Zero or a new Star Fox for the Wii-U? I’d also love to see a Donkey Kong Country on the 3DS. Sure, that’s not a revival, it’s only been two years but it’d still be awesome. But it doesn’t have to stop there. Custom Robo, Chibi-Robo, Ice Climbers, Wave Race, 1080 Snowboarding, Geist. Yes, I would even accept a Geist sequel. Just, anything to show that you know these franchises still exist, Nintendo. Please? For me?

1. Mario at Wii-U Launch

You need this more than we do, Nintendo.
I hope you’re reading this Nintendo. It’s nice that you’ve been giving other franchises a chance to shine at launch with your consoles in recent years, no really, it is. It was nice of you to give Luigi his own game on the Gamecube and try your hand with another Pilotwings on the 3DS but you have to realize you’re not getting the results at launch that you would like. You need to bring Mario back. The 3DS’s launch was pathetic and a lot of that had to do with the fact that you lacked a major title to back it up. If you just would have had Super Mario 3D Land or Mario Kart 7 at launch, it would have been a whole different story. The only reason the Wii did so well out the gates was because of Wii Sports and I’m sorry, you likely will not get that lightning in a bottle again with the Wii-U. Do not risk it, Nintendo. You need Mario. Have NEW Super Mario Bros. Mii or whatever it’s called right there from the beginning. Hell, pack it in with the console. You want to move units? Throw in a Mario game for free. It’s great that you plan to have games like Pikmin 3 and Batman: Arkham City at launch, but those aren’t going to move units. Your “hardcore” audience will greatly appreciate them, but the average joes who made NEW Super Mario Bros. the bestselling DS game just aren’t going to care. You need Mario. Tell us you will have Mario at launch. Reassure us that you actually care about the launch of your newest console this time. Please, Nintendo. Please.

Well, there you have it. The seven things I want most out out of E3 (within reason, of course.) The conference is going on right now so I guess we’ll see if I get anything I want! Sound off with what you want in the comments below.

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