To be perfectly honest, I barely got to play anything. Actually, I got to play two games the entire time I was at E3. Yes, two games. Super Smash Brothers Melee (where I was kicking Citan's ass until round 3) and Wars Advance...or Advance Wars [Ed's note: It's Advance Wars, dear :P] ...or whatever the hell it's called. My time at E3 was spent running around the convention center; either I was late for an appointment or I was being summoned on my cell phone to meet so-and-so near some hall, where I'd still have to call them back on their cell phone just to find where the hell they were. I did make a lot of E3 contacts though, and I was the only staffer who got invited to some industry parties (the Ziff Davis party and the Sony party, to be exact). I did make some time to go out for sushi w/staffers while I was there. If you're ever in downtown LA, go to this sushi place called Dok De Do and order a Hite (and they don't card!).
Nintendo totally dominated, as I TOLD Rudo they would (Pikachu my ass!). Though the thing is, they really don't have any mind blowing games coming out for GameCube. Advance Wars is a neat strategy title though, Castlevania: Circle of the Moon made this SotN fan happy to be alive, and the upcoming Klonoa title make GBA something to be happy for. Do I think GameCube will win the system wars? Maybe. PlayStation 2's launch was unbelievably bad and Nintendo seems to be on a mission to woo developers, but Sony still has some tricks up its sleeve. Xbox will be left in the dust unless a miracle happens. Seriously, pictures do not do it justice. You can't possibly fathom how incredibly huge the thing is until it's right in front of you. And by the way, thanks Microsoft for totally forgetting that girls play games. Or maybe they think we're all as massive as Chyna, who knows. I think I'll be importing the Japanese controller though.
The most disappointing thing about E3 though was Sega's closed booth. If I had known it would be appointment only this year, I would've called Access PR EVERY day, demanding an appointment. As it was, we only got to hear about all the cool stuff inside...and damn is Jet Set Radio Future sweet. Supposedly PSO Ver. 2 for GameCube was running inside...the weird thing is the Nintendo booth kept playing the PSO music, yet it was nowhere to be found there. Us lushes are easily confused.
I was never looking forward to Ephmeral Fantasia, and I still didn't see much to pique my interest. Not that I was paying attention, as I was trying to dodge the advances of the product manager who was showing it to us. Grandia II on PlayStation 2 looks almost identical to the Dreamcast version. Tales of Destiny 2, aka Tales of Eternia, looks nice. I can't say much about the localization right now, though I'm kinda miffed the Garnet Crow song will be nixed. Dragon Warrior VII seems to be pretty far along in its localization, though I was paying more attention to their product manager (he's a total hottie!). SP and Citan can tell you plenty about it anyway. Hoshigami looks cool, especially since I like Final Fantasy Tactics...even though it pissed me off so much! I'd get to Chapter 3, get fed up w/levelling up and start over. Arc the Lad Collection didn't do much to impress me, though it looked horrible on the widescreen tvs at WD's booth. Lunar PC was nowhere to be found though...very interesting indeed.
Some other stuff about E3...
- Chrono was once again late picking me up at LAX...though he did have a better excuse this year than last. At least I didn't end up wandering around for 2 hours w/four bags of luggage (I only brought two this time).
- My hotel room constantly smelled like pot. My friend Sam Bishop (much love in the Sony Style hizouse!), who I KNOW smokes it, swears it wasn't him. The mystery still remains unsolved.
- If you read Something Awful, you know who Cliffy B is (level designer or something for Unreal Tournament). Not only did I get to meet him at the Sony party, he even checked out my rack! Boy, do I feel blessed.
- The Nintendojo people...the goofiest mo-fo's ever. They're the ones who attempted to speak in Japanese to Miyamoto but it all came out wrong. They stayed right next to Rudo, and every time we'd walk by, they'd stare at us.
- Me tripping over a speaker at the Ziff Davis party...I have yet to heal, both physically and emotionally.
- Zach Meston apologizing to me at the Sony party. After everything that's happened, finally getting to close that chapter is really therapeutic, and I'm getting a chance to rediscover that Zach is a cool person. So leave him alone now guys...just concentrate on the "LOOO-NAHR" guy, kay? Zealots, you can send me hate mail at email@example.com ...I look forward to your messages. :)
- Drunken sex on a cold bathroom floor...it's not as cool as it sounds.
- Kingdom Hearts looks so ridiculous that it's either going to be amazingly good or expectedly bad.
- Like FFVIII? You'll probably like FFX too.
- Go buy TDK's games! Especially all their Robotech licensed games whenever they come out!</shameless plug>
- Going as media has its perks, like cutting to the front of the line for Square's game/movie trailer. Eat that, GIA! Kidding, kidding...much love to Vestal, Ed, and Glick!
- Kentia Hall is Korean Game World hell...which can be both good and bad.
- The CG guy for Silent Hill is super cool...no, really, he is!
- Less booth babes = happier me. Seriously, not because I'm offended or think I'm in competition or anything...but they take up too much room! Booths get crowded enough as it is, you don't need any dead weight just standing around. And like 1 out of 10 companies need booth babes. Sure, GOD does, just so you'll look at what they have to offer. GOD had beer too though. Good thing too, cuz the only way you could look at some of their nasty schoolgirl skanks was while intoxicated.
- I got a Sony PlayStation 2 bag and you didn't, nyah nyah! One of the cool dj-style bags they were giving out at the Sony party, not the ugly ones at the press conference.
- Enix gave me the complete, import version of the Dragon Quest VII soundtrack. John Laurence rules.
- Hoshigami (PSX)
- FFIV and Chrono Trigger (kickin' it oldschool, yo!) (PSX)
- Tales of Destiny 2 (PSX)
- PSO Ver. 2 (DC)
- Dragon Warrior VII (PSX)
- Jet Set Radio Future (Xbox)
- Silent Hill 2 (PS2)
- Metal Gear Solid 2 (PS2)
- Devil May Cry (PS2)
- Super Smash Bros. Melee (GCN)
Best of Show:
- Atlus Interview...which will be posted VERY soon, I promise!
- Sony party
- Enix's product manager
- Lack of booth babes
- No scary Gravis cheerleaders this year *shudders*
Worst of Show:
- WD's booth (whee, games we've already seen and a crane machine!)
- Square's cheesy video presentation
- Sega's closed booth (which can only garner a "WTF?!")
- Convention Center food
And the award for best fisting goes to...Rudo! Sushi, Hite, and sake will make you say crazy things early at night.