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E3 2006 Impressions

Patrick Gann's Impressions
General Show Impressions:

I had a great time at E3 this year. This was my second E3 (I went last year too), and yeah...this one was better.

Let's split this into a generic good/bad list. I'll start with the good stuff.

The Final Fantasy XIII trailers. Yes. Yes! I definitely lost control of my bladder and bowels simultaneously during these *three* trailers. It was awesome. Unless someone was very sneaky with a camera, you probably won't be able to see these videos for awhile. I promise you, this will be the reason I first buy a PS3.

Actual prospects for Japanese RPGs on Xbox 360. Ubisoft is publishing Enchanted Arms, and Hudson's hard at work localizing our very first Far East of Eden title. That is great news.

Lots of RPGs in general. There was so much RPG content at E3 this year, I was freaking out. It was great. The return of Hudson is great news, and Atlus / NIS America's joint booth was a great place for 2D goodness. The Kaneko art signing was awesome too, except I missed it.

What else was good? Square Enix's PR people. They were exceptionally kind to me and everyone else I saw them speaking with. They are just great people, and they were much more open to answering questions than many other companies.

Which brings us to our negatives...

Bandai Namco's Show Floor Reps. In my personal opinion, they were terrible. I knew more about The Legend of Heroes than all the people I talked to regarding the game, combined. No one was available to talk about Xenosaga Ep. III or Tales of the Abyss, even though trailers were showing.

Also, Capcom's Show Floor Reps are generally ignorant of their own titles. But I didn't spend much time with them, because they wouldn't even take time out of their day to talk to someone who likes RPGs (shame! shame!).

Another negative was the "no booth babes" rule. Not because I want booth babes...but because the rule wasn't enforced AT ALL! While nobody was one step away from nudity (like last year), I did get a picture taken with six Mithra cosplayers, and I saw plenty of scantily-clad girls running around various booths. They clearly stand out, because 1) they usually know nothing about videogames, and 2) they are dressed to please the guys. If you're going to say "no more booth babes," try meaning it. I'm not saying they shouldn't have them, I'm just saying that hypocrisy is stupid.

My final negative? The Wii line. If you're going to have something that cool at the show, please don't torture me with a five hour wait, thank you very much.

Okay, let's talk about what all I did...

Wednesday I did nothing but get interviews and type news stories. That's it. I promise. I played very few games.

Thursday I found more time to play games, though I didn't make it through the massive "Wii" line. I still did lots of interviews that day too.

I spent my entire Friday at the Final Fantasy XI booth answering trivia questions in hopes of winning a new computer. I did win something...the Final Fantasy XI: Rise of the Zilart soundtrack. Oh wait, I've owned that thing for three years. I gave it to a girl in exchange for some T-shirts.

Here are my lists of awesome stuff.

Top 5 RPGs:
1) Valkyrie Profile 2: Silmeria (PS2)
2) Rogue Galaxy (PS2)
3) Enchanted Arms (360)
4) Final Fantasy III (DS)
5) Final Fantasy XII (PS2)
Top 5 Non-RPGs:
1) Metal Gear Solid 4 (PS3)
2) Rule of Rose (PS2)
3) Ninety-Nine Nights (360)
4) Halo 3 (360)
5) God of War II (PS2)
Top 5 Trailers:
1) Final Fantasy XIII (Versus, Agito, all of it).
2) Xenosaga Episode III: Also Sprach Zarathustra.
3) Super Smash Brothers Brawls.
4) Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core.
5) Wii.
Top 5 Fun E32K6 Sayings:
1) Wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!!!
3) Arise, chicken, arise!
4) I'm not gay.
5) Orcs Love Waterslides.
Top 5 Pieces o' Swag:
1) Atelier Iris 2 w/ soundtrack and strategy guide.
2) Bumpy Trot Harmonica.
3) Jack Frost lanyard thingy (again).
4) Harvest Moon T-Shirt.
5) Final Fantasy XI Mouse Pad.
Top 5 Booths:
1) Square Enix
2) Nintendo
3) Atlus/NIS America
4) Konami
5) Sony

More Impressions
Patrick Gann Stephen Harris John McCarroll Christine Radler
Mike Salbato Damian Thomas Mark P. Tjan


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