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[E3 2013] Which Of The “Big Three” Won E3?

Okay, yes, it’s kind of a silly question. Who won E3? That’s a difficult question to question to ask, but now that much of the news is out and the dust has settled, it’s one I feel I’m up to answering.

This is a grading of the “Big Three’s” pre-E3 media briefings — the big three being Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo. The stage had been set weeks prior for what would likely become a vicious battle for gamers’ hearts. Microsoft’s recent stumble opened the door for Sony to win a few converts, and Nintendo, being above such bickering, decided to shy away from the pre-E3 madness so they could have a more direct event. Find out who won, after the break.

Microsoft

Oof. Microsoft has done fucked up big. The Xbox One, touted as a console for “gamers” is really anything but. It restricts the sale of used games by putting the option of removing that right to the publishers — the group that’s most vehemently opposed to the used games market — as well as the loaning of games you own to your friends, unless they’re in your Xbox “Family.” Even though you’re dropping $60 (or more) on a video game, you don’t really own that game.

It also requires an Internet connection so the console can check with Microsoft every 24 hours. If it can’t perform this check, you can no longer play games on it. If you have a problem with this, Microsoft says you can get an Xbox 360.

They would’ve had to pull a miracle out of their ass to win back those who felt scorned by these anti-consumer tactics. So did they?

No, not even a little.

Xbox Live won’t change much outside of offering lots more sports, TV features and two free games to Gold subscribers. The service will still cost $60. That’s not a huge deal, because Xbox Live is great. I’ve happily paid for my Gold membership for years, because until Sony caught up with PS Plus, it was the best.

The console itself will bring with it an intimidating $499 price tag. But hey, at least it comes with the Kinect. People still use those, right?

Despite mostly following through with their promise to make E3 all about games (Dead Rising 3, Ryse, Quantum Break and Sunset Overdrive all look like solid exclusives) they haven’t done a single thing to soothe my worries about the Xbox One.

Sony

For me, the Xbox 360 handily won this console generation. I use my PS3 for movies more often than I do gaming, and most of my friends own an Xbox. Changing that would’ve required quite the effort on Sony’s part.

It seems they were up to the challenge.

Sony’s learned a lot since they’re infamous PS3 reveal many moons ago. It’s like they’ve been watching Microsoft this entire generation, studying them so they could break their neck and take the crown. On Monday, they struck, and took the fight straight to Microsoft’s jugular.

First off, the video games. Sony’s offering was a varied mix of familiar AAA blockbusters like Killzone, and Infamous, promising new IPs like The Order: 1886, as well as a slew of high profile indie titles, including Outlast and Daylight — all of which will be coming exclusively to PC and the PlayStation 4.

They’ve opened the doors a little more widely for indie developers to more easily create games for their platform. That’s a big deal.

On top of that, Sony dismantled the Xbox One bit by bit by confirming the PS4 supports used games — you can trade in and loan your games as you like — and not requiring an Internet connection to play games on it.

As I watched the live stream, this is where everything was drowned out my uproarious cheers of approval, which only grew when Sony revealed the PS4’s price tag of $399.

The only downside to Sony’s conference is that PS Plus will be required to play games online. That’s a little disappointing.

I’d give Sony an A+, but earning that will require them to stop breaking my damn heart with this The Last Guardian is coming/not coming/on hiatus/definitely coming at some point in time nonsense.

Nintendo

Nintendo doesn’t need to do much to keep their fans happy. Just announce a game with Zelda, Mario, or Metroid in the title and people will lose their damn minds.

Thankfully, Nintendo did just that. They announced a new Super Smash Bros., which will be coming to the Wii U and 3DS. They also revealed Mario Kart 8, a new Donkey Kong Country, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, Wind Waker HD, and a slew of first party titles that will undoubtedly sell faster than sweet rolls in Whiterun.

On the third party front is where they failed to capture my interest.

Outside of X, The Wonderful 101, and Bayonetta 2 — the latter two developed by Vanquish and Bayonetta developer Platinum Games — there wasn’t much of interest.

On the horror front, we got nothing. Nada, zip, zilch. That’s hugely disappointing. I would’ve awarded Nintendo a bonus skull in their final score had they even briefly teased a ZombiU sequel.

Overall, Nintendo’s showing wasn’t all that disappointing. If you’re a fan of their biggest franchises, there’s plenty coming to the Wii U and 3DS to keep you satisfied. Unfortunately, that’s basically all you’re going to get.

Disagree? Let me know who you think “won E3” by voting in the poll below, or you can be a little more vocal in the comments.

Who Won E3
 

Have a question? Feel free to ever-so-gently toss Adam an email, or follow him on Twitter and Bloody Disgusting.



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