The final day of Cyril's E3 Story

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posted 6/20/2003 by Cyril Lachel
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This is going to be the year of the Sequel!
I expected a few sequels, but as I walked through the halls of E3, I noticed that there was a sequel at almost every booth. Metal Gear Solid 3, Rainbow Six 3, Project Gotham Racing 2, Commandos 3, Time Crisis 3, Halo 2, Half-Life 2, Doom 3, Gran Turismo 4, SSX3, Mario Party 5, Star Fox 2, Pikmin 2, Final Fantasy X-2, Gradius V, Dino Crisis 3, Silent Hill 3, EverQuest II, F-Zero GX, Ape Escape 2, Soul Calibur 2, and so many more not even worth talking about! And don’t even get me started on the updates and remakes, like Altered Beast and Worms 3D. Thankfully there were a few brand new franchises, but it certainly seemed like this year was overrun with sequels.

Nintendo & Microsoft will Drop Price … Sony will Offer Pack-In Game!
I went out on a limb here, I figured there would be a price cut, but for a while there a PS2 pack-in seemed reasonable. Towards the end of E3 Sony and Microsoft dropped the price of their units to $179.99, but neither offered a new pack-in. Nintendo, on the other hand, decided to extend their pack-in promotion to include their upcoming GameBoy Player, but opted to keep the price the same.

Sony will Support a PlayStation 2 Memory Stick Adaptor!
Going into E3 I was under the assumption that they would introduce Final Fantasy XI, and that they would not release the PS2 HDD. I figured they would go the Memory Stick route, since it would be a cheaper alternative, and could work with all games. I was surprised to see Sony’s Hard Drive up and running, and offering a browser and software support. At the moment it looks like the HDD will only support two games, but that’s better than nothing. As for the memory stick, Sony announced they will use it in their PlayStation Portable, which leads me to believe the future looks bright for Memory Stick and PlayStation compatibility.

Rockstar will have big posters for upcoming games … but few will be on the show floor!
Last year E3 goers were frustrated by huge posters for Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, but no product on the show floor. This year Rockstar pulled a similar stunt, with posters for Max Payne 2 everywhere, but no game in sight. They also had a huge poster for a game based on the cult classic 1979 film, the Warriors. The booth did have a few titles, but mostly ports of already released games (read: Vice City, Midnight Club 2, etc.). So ultimately, the Rockstar Booth was a bust.

First Person Shooters will be the dominant style of game!
There probably weren’t more first person shooters than is to be expected this year, but considering that almost all of them were able to wow the crowds seemed like a major feet in and of itself. Half-Life 2, with it’s destroy anything/interact with everything gameplay was worlds ahead of anything I had seen before, and Halo 2 is, well, exactly what you expected from a sequel to the best Xbox game out there. Other titles like XIII were able to make a niche for themselves even with these big titles hogging the spot light.

There will be no Online Nintendo Games
If Nintendo had any online news, then I must have missed it. They had a number of games to show off, a few which seemed destined for online play, but none offering that option. Where in contrast, almost every game at the Xbox booth seemed to be Xbox Live enabled. Nintendo’s silence isn’t exactly unexpected, but considering the state of the affairs they find themselves in here in the U.S. and over in Europe, it would have been nice to know something about their plans.
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