So I can get some sleep, I’m going to avoid recapping Tuesday as exhaustively as I did Monday. I spent the time I normally would have devoted to a comprehensive recap of Tuesday writing my column on the 3DS, Kinect and PlayStation Move for Friday’s paper.
In lieu of a full-fledged recap, I’ll give you the quick rundown of what I did Tuesday. Things started off with the Nintendo and Sony media briefings, which I’ll try to cover later in a way that doesn’t just regurgitate days-old announcements.
At the end of the day, I thought Nintendo had the best product at the show, the 3DS, but a lot of their presentation was just talking and clips — not enough gameplay! Then I realized at the end that they condensed everything else so we all could hold the 3DS in our hands or try the new “Legend of Zelda” game at the end of the conference. It was very cool and also very Nintendolike that it was set up in such a way that pretty much everyone who wanted to got to touch the 3DS before heading to Sony’s press conference. (The parade of babes tethered to the 3DSes was a little weird, though, but more on that another day.)
After Sony’s briefing, which was brilliantly scripted and immensely entertaining, I bused to the convention center and met with Valve, who showed me trailers and gameplay for “Portal 2.” I was a huge fan of the original “Portal,” so expect a whole post on just that in the coming days. The one potentially semi-exclusive nugget I got out of Valve’s Erik Johnson was that unlike the first “Portal,” this one will have downloadable content. It’s not really a surprise, but it wasn’t an official part of the presentation, either.
After that, I met with Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. I got a little hands-on time with the new “Super Scribblenauts” for the DS, the puzzle-solving game that lets you write words before it creates those words in-game. I also got long looks at folks playing “Game Party: In Motion” for Kinect, a new, kid-oriented “Lord of the Rings” game “Aragorn’s Quest” and “Lego Harry Potter: Years 1-4.” Then, I watched a presentation on the upcoming “Mortal Kombat” game. I haven’t played a “Mortal Kombat” in well over a decade, but I was impressed enough that it’ll get its own post.
After that, I had an abbreviated meeting with Hudson. I’d already seen “Lost in Shadow” and some of their other titles at Konami’s Gamer’s Night in San Francisco, but I did get to play my first Kinect game, the archery minigame in “Deca Sports Freedom.” It was fun, although not the sort of thing that’s gonna make someone who owns “Wii Sports” run out and pick up a Kinect all by itself. I also tried out a new “Bomberman” game for Xbox Live Arcade. It was very much in the style of “Bomberman Live!” and not like that dreadful “Bomberman: Act Zero” that everyone would just like to forget.
My last appointment of the day was a booth tour with Nintendo, and many of my thoughts from that visit are wrapped up in what I wrote about the 3DS in this week’s column. In short, I think this thing is going to be a runaway hit, assuming Apple’s not a week away from announcing a 3D iPhone that will hit the stores in September.
I also got to try the new “Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword.” I’ll post some impressions on that in the coming days, as well. I was in line to try out “Kirby’s Epic Yarn,” a cool-looking, textile-heavy platform-jumping game in the same vein visually as “LittleBigPlanet.” But then I realized I’d left my jacket in the “Mortal Kombat” theater all the way over on the other side of the expo, so I had to jet. Also, I felt like the biggest San Franciscan, carrying a hoodie I didn’t need all day when it was sunny and warm out, just in case it got cold. (Of course, this is L.A., so it didn’t.)