Sony's E3 press conference: solid but uninspired

Sony was the last of the 'big three' press conferences at the Electronic Entertainment Expo this year. After Nintendo's very impressive showing earlier in the day, they had their work cut out for them if they wanted to 'win' the press conference battle. They did things a bit differently. Rather than front-loading the show with games, they started off talking about technology. 3D gaming to be specific. Sony is pushing the 3D experience hard, and I'm not sure how well that resonates with most gamers at this point. There aren't a lot of households equipped for 3D yet. I understand Sony's game plan: establish themselves as the 3D gaming platform early and hope that 3D in the living room takes off. But emphasizing 3D so strongly in the first minutes of their press conference made for a slow start, at least for those of us viewing remotely. Perhaps the actual 3D experience in the auditorium felt differently.

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As for 3D games, Killzone 3 was their flagship title. It'll ship in February of 2011 and supports the Playstation Move controller as well as 3D. Other Sony 3D titles mentioned include The Sly Collection, Gran Turismo 5 and Motorstorm Apocalypse. There was also a long list of third party titles said to be 3D enabled. Next up was Playstation Move. They showcased the technology with a new game, Sorcery, that has you using the Move controller to fling spell bolts at creatures. It was a family friendly 3rd person adventure that didn't seem remarkable in any way. Representing sports was Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11. It'll have Move support patched in once the technology ships. It was hard to see how this was much different from Tiger Woods on the Wii with Motion Plus support, but this is the trouble with these new technologies. It's hard to demo them visually; you have to actually have hands-on experience to appreciate the difference between systems (or so I presume, anyway). Last was a brief trailer for a new game, Heroes on the Move, which features Ratchet, Jak and Sly, along with their respective sidekicks. This was followed by talk of a Coca-Cola promotion effort for the Move. Just as the audience was starting to nod off, Kevin Butler (the character who appears in the 'It Just Does Everything' series of Playstation ads) appeared on stage. He cracked a few 'in' jokes (several at Microsoft's expense) and got the audience smiling again. Move launches on September 19th in North America. The Move controller alone will cost $49.99. The secondary controller will be $29.99. A bundle containing the Move controller, Playstation Eye camera and a game will be $99.99, and finally there's be a bunch with a PS3, Move controller, Playstation Eye and a game for $399.99. Move games will cost $39.99, and I assume this means games built just for the Move (in other words, casual Move titles).

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