ELECTRONIC ENTERTAINMENT EXPO- 2005
By Daniel Pickett and Jason Geyer.
It’s that time of year again… for the loudest trade show EVER- E3 the Electronic Entertainment Expo featuring the newest and best of the video game and enteractive entertainment industry. This event was again held in Los Angeles at the LA Convention Center from May 18-20th. And with three new consoles debuting this was the biggest show ever! I had to hit the show a couple of times for work so I figured as long as I was there you guys might like a peek at what is coming up for the next year of cool video games. To start with, here are some views of how chaotic the convention center is during E3. There is no seeming rhyme or reason to the layout of the place, leaving you to wander between the very expensive, very cool displays hawking everything from Pac-Man to a game where you gather trash as you run around! As always, click on a picture to see a larger image.
Now let’s get to the games! There will be a game based on the upcoming Aeon Flux movie starring Charlize Theron. There’s lots of cool climbing, sliding, killing and running around, just like in the original animated series.
Buena Vista Games, rising from the ashes of Disney Interactive, was on hand in full force to show off several of their hot new titles including a new Nightmare Before Christmas game :Oogie’s Revenge, Chicken Little and The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe . The had a large display of props and costumes from Narnia, which gave many fans their first look at this highly anticipated series of films.
Yes… you see that right. A Jaws game… where you are the shark!
Speaking of abnormally large critters, there was also a massive display for the game based on Peter Jackson’s King Kong film. There wasn’t much to see on the outside apart from the facade and the inside was for VIPs only. I managed to sneak a friend in the first day and the report came back very favorable of what they saw. But then again how can you go wrong with big monkeys fighting dinosaurs. We also fleetingly glimpsed a new Indiana Jones game just announced from LucasArts. No title yet, but here is a screenshot showing the fanstatic graphics. From what little we saw, it looks like this photorealistic game will take Indy back around the globe, once again fighting Nazis.
Yep. Weirder than a Jaws game… A Taxi Driver game?
And just when you think the licenses can’t get any more electic, Rockstar Games announces a new game based on the cult classic 70′s film "The Warriors." RockStar games had an interesting booth this year. It was a series of charter busses behind a chain link fence. And on each of those busses…were wrap around graphics of their new games. "Warr-iors…. come out and plaaaa-aaaay". This was shown longside other fan favorites such as the upcoming Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City, of course.
COMIC BOOK GAMES
Activision carries on their tradition of great comic book and movie themed products. This year they were showing off the new Fantastic Four movie based game and the new Ultimate Spider-Man game. I got to play a bit of Ultimate Spider-Man and the game has a great "hand-drawn" look to it. It’s kind of hard to explain without seeing it, but I thought it looked great. Fans of Activision’s other Spider-Man games are going to love this .
There’s also a new HULK game coming. This game sports the tag-line "Your world is your weapon" and they are not kidding. From the looks of the game trailer you can use anything you see to beat the stuffing out of other people and objects in this game! I don’t know about the Hulk, but his "assistants" were sporting a few weapons of their own.
And a new Conan game should interest fans. That’s a first for that license. The upcoming City of Villains game was shown again this year and fans can’t WAIT to get their hands on this one!
I had a blast playing the new Teen Titans game as well. You can play as any of the team members. Starfire and Raven are always flying in the game. Each characer has a series of special attacks.
Above is a Darkness video game based off the comic book of the same name.
But it’s not just all video games. There were several display cases with toys sprinkled around the showroom floor. This Capcom case not only showed off SOTA’s Street Fighter line and Jazwares MegaMan line, but also gave us our first look at NECA’s newly announced Resident Evil 4 license. Also on display was a pair of Microman Chun-Li figures.
Nintendo Licensed products, Beyblade paraphernalia, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles merchandise were all in full force at the show.
Oh, man… An new Civilization game? I’ve lost a LOT of hours to this franchise! Meanwhile, 2K Games was have a poker championship on site.
Of course, we know that what everyone has been anxiously waiting to see is the future of Dance, Dance Revolution!
I’m not just being a company man when I say that EA truly had the most impressive booth as evidenced by their super cool 360 degree theater… and hidden rooms. Hidden within EA massive booth were some private VIP rooms. One was for the new The Godfather the game (built out with all the period set pieces and wood paneling. Also there was a room showing off EA’s plans for the next gen consoles. I got to play a bit of the upcoming Batman Begins game and now I can’t wait for it to hit stores on June 1st. The other comic book based game EA is working on is Marvel Nemisis: the Rise of the Imperfects. This game features you favorite Marvel characters facing off agains an original group of characters. The other secret VIP room in the EA booth was for Criterion studios "BLACK." You’ll be hearing A LOT more about this game soon.
But for me the "best in show" award goes to the game I can’t WAIT for: BURNOUT: REVENGE! I tell you people, I’m NOT into driving games at all. I never have been… but my life was taken over by BURNOUT III: TAKEDOWN (voted most adictive game of 2004) for quite some time. BURNOUT: REVENGE is so far above and beyond BIII…. I’m doomed!
Unfortunately, you can’t drive Batman’s car in it. But they did have "the Tumbler" from Batman Begins on display at E3. Here’s a look inside the 360 booth with a demo shot, and a look at the new Madden NFL game, and then a few pictures of the other EA displays.
Namco had a stage full of dancers…
And some new Pac-Man products to show off…
They also had a big banner on their booth for Peanuts, but I’ll be darned if I could find any info on a game in their booth.
Some cool WWE props, costumes and belts.
The new XBOX 360 was on display, or as we like to call it "Bill Gate’s new foray into world domination". They had a heck of a booth, with the best view of the whole show from a second floor landing. I guess the games were cool, too. But the view from that landing…hoo boy!
Just in time for Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, Nvidia will be offering exclusive limited PC towers with custom Star Wars graphics. Too bad more people don’t realize that this Star Wars thing is kind of popular.
Nothing like another X-Men game to get the blood going. With any luck they might have finally included Wolverine in a game!
Gamers far and wide were happy to rest their weary feet in the latest in futuristic gaming pods. Ah, Sweet nerd of youth…
And finally here is a look at some of the amazingly detailed displays and life size figures used to promote upcoming games. From the top, Kingdom Hearts Sora display, A giant Mickey Mouse from Kingdom Hearts 2, a MageKnight dragon, Shadow the Hedgehog, A talking Donkey character from the Shrek display, a full sized Stargate replica, the SoulCalibur castle, an amazingly lifelike StarCraft:Ghost character, some very friendly girls promoting the new Singles 2 game, and some ubiquitous Budweiser spokespeople promoting…something.
If you are really into the "booth babes" at E3 there are whole sites devoted to those: IU4
And e3girls.com gives you a complete history of the girls of the show from 2000-2005: E3Girls.com
And if youwant to see them in "action" Gametrailers.com has a nice video montage: GameTrailers.com E3 video
And last but not least… The folks over at G4TV give you the ability to rate the girls of E3: G4TV- Rate the Booth Babes
Of course, if you really want to know about the games that were shown, Gamespot and Tom’s Hardware Guide have comprehensive coverage.
That’s it for this year!