|Monday, June 14 Report|
One by one, the team from SimHQ cycled through the Baggage Claim at LAX and into the cool, humid afternoon in coastal Los Angeles. Everyone rendevoused exactly as planned. A block of suites in a local hotel is now wired with a new SimHQ wireless network (shhh — don’t tell the management). This year’s team is the largest ever for SimHQ (no fat jokes, please), with no fewer than seven steely-eyed staffers rolling into sunny SoCal, eager to enter the media feeding frenzy when the show opens its doors at high noon on Tuesday. Our E3 experience runs the gammut, from Chunx’ attending his 7th E3, to E3 newbies Chipwich, ConManly and Panther. With an improving economy, this year’s E3 portends to be the biggest in recent years. With over a half-dozen sets of eyes, SimHQ should be able to gather a great deal of information.
Like the earthquake that just shook SoCal, (making our hotel feel like it was perched atop a water bed), news at this show is already producing ripples throughout the gaming world, with announcements from Mircrosoft about the new Xbox360 “slim” console, and Project Natal, now out in the open as the
Konnecticut Kinect game control system. Turn10 Studios was on-hand to demonstrate a new version ofForza Motorsport 3 that uses Kinect to allow gamers to interact with the racing title in new ways that will at once inspire (TrackIR-style head tracking) and sicken (“controller-free” air driving) fans of racing simulations. EA’s upcoming Battlefield: Bad Company 2 Vietnam title also created a bit of media buzz as did new coding for Crysis2 that will allow for true, stereoscopic 3D on all platforms, but probably the most incredible bombshell for sim fans was the announcement of “Michael Jackson Dance Studio”.
For the sim world, there’s a lot disappointment for anticipated items that didn’t make the show: Lead Pursuit’s latest project, Codemaster’sF1 2010, SimBin’s upcoming GTR 2011 and ISI’s rFactor2 all failed to make this year’s show. With a lack of heavy-hitters like these, you might think that there’s nothing noteworthy for SimHQ to report on at E3. But actually there’s plenty here to excite the senses of a die-hard fan of simulation games, both on the PC and the console. MadCatz/Saitek have a new console racing wheel, Sony has it’s long, long, looong-anticipated Gran Turismo 5 for the PS3, 777 Studios has the latest version to Rise of Flight, HKS as teamed with Interworks for a new PS3 racing controller and BlackBean has its World Rally Championship simulation here at the show.
Guod checked with Oleg this past Thursday on the status of Storm of War, and would we see it at this year’s E3Expo? He replied back,“We had hoped to show it at E3, but we are not ready yet. SoW is going very good. Can’t say superb in terms of time, but good. I’m sure it will be something very good done in comparison to all sims present on the market.”
Other developers have hinted at products in work. Cascade Game Foundry, elements of the now-defunct Microsoft Flight Simulator team, are at this year’s show and may give details about an upcoming project. Other simulation gaming luminaries are lurking at this year’s show with products still under very tight wraps — wraps we hope to unveil exclusively for you in the coming days.
Like every E3 before it, this year’s show will no-doubt produce some surprise discoveries for the SimHQ team — maybe even bigger thanMichael Jackson Dance Studio. Keep your fingers and toes crossed and a watchful eye on SimHQ’s web site and Twitter pages as Chipwich, Chunx, ConManly, Joe, Magnum, Panther and guod feed you with the info only a simulation fan could appreciate.
|ConManly and Chipwich check the news.|
|Panther, Chipwich, Magnum, Chunx and ConManly. Joe was still on the plane headed for LA.|
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