Editorial – Who Won E3?

Every year, people ask the same question. “Who won E3?” This is, of course, the hardest question to answer. Winning is very subjective. If you are a fan of shooters, you will think Microsoft won. Casual gamers will think Nintendo took top honors. To decide the winner, one must look at the announcements.

At first glance, one would think that a winner could be decided by games, but really, that isn’t the case. All three systems announced equally impressive titles. So then, the key metric must be peripherals.

Let’s look at Microsoft. Clearly, their big announcement is Project Natal. There is practically endless possibility with it. We watched a person drive a car by holding an imaginary wheel. And then they pulled into an imaginary pit stop, and someone replaced the wheels with an imaginary impact wrench. Clearly, there is a lot that can be done, and that is its greatest strength and weakness. Where to begin? In the right hands, Natal will revolutionize gaming. But without a TON of work, Natal stands to become another Eye Toy, a gimmick that is used once, put on a shelf, and quickly forgotten.

So what about Nintendo? Out of the spirit of competition, we’ll ignore their awful delivery and consider their two announcements: MotionPlus (again) and the Vitality Sensor. With MotionPlus, the Wii will finally give one-to-one recognition of movement. Something that was promised when it was announced. Sadly, it looks like MotionPlus, powerful though it is, is not as simple as one might imagine. Nintendo did some wonderful things with it in Wii Sports Vacation, but the response is not as accurate for other games. And even some of the Wii Sports games felt like the little dongle did little for it. With proper use, MotionPlus will make the Wii a vastly better experience, but early reports are showing that third party developers are having a hard time getting it to work as flawlessly as the coding wizards at Nintendo.

And then we have the Vitality Sensor. Zzzzzzzzz whuh? Sorry. I dozed off there. I took the red eye, after all. What was I talking about? Oh, the Vitality Sensor. Ummm… no. Don’t announce something that sounds completely ridiculous, give us no examples of how you’ll use it, and then move on. You guys should really know better than that.

And last, but not least, we have Sony. They have a motion controller too! And it looks like the spawn of a Wii Remote, a glowing microphone, and Project Natal. At first glance, it looks too silly to even hold in your hand, but in practice, this has the most potential. Let’s face it. Waggle isn’t going anywhere. This thing had the same capabilities of MotionPlus, all on the PS3. Is it innovative? No. Is it downright copying Nintendo? Yes. Is it the first time they’ve done this? No. I predict we’ll see HD ports of Wii games, and Sony will profit handsomely.

As technology advances, there are fewer innovations left. Natal copied (and improved upon) Eye Toy. Sony improved on the Wii Remote. People are going to copy other technologies while putting their own unique spin on things. This is how the industry works. Some things will work, and some things will fall by the wayside.

Natal has potential. It’s a maybe. The Vitality Sensor was promised to help people relax, maybe sleep better. It’s working already, but not quite the way they intended and certainly not to its benefit. The Sony Wiimote looks impressive, but we’ll need to see it in more than just a tech demo. If it does what they say it will, and Sony is good about keeping promises, they’ve got a hit on their hands.

So there you have it. Sony won. Don’t like that answer? Then… um… Hanes won. Why Hanes? 109820982098430984 (give or take a couple) t-shirts were given out at E3. They made a killing.


  1. Matt "Wonderslime" Demers:

    I have to say that I really believe that this boils it down a little too simply. To me and most people out there, the main buzz and excitement about E3 is all about game announcements, and yet this editorial barely took them into account. Surely Nintendo “loses” if only hardware and peripherals are considered- and maybe Sony still wins AFTER software is considered- but I think that this side of the equation needs a lot more consideration!

  2. Jordan "J_Sensei" Jackson:

    That’s just the thing. Everyone had some great game announcements, and it’s hard to quantify those. How do you stack Metroid vs Halo? Final Fantasy XIII against XIV? The games are a wash, if you look at them as a whole. For me, Metroid means a lot more than Halo, but sales-wise, both will do very well. Does that help clarify?

  3. flamethrower:

    The vitality sensor is not real. It’s for dramatic effect. To create contrast between the vitality sensor and Metroid 3 announcement. A recent Penny Arcade comic strip highlighted this fact.

    There is too much vaporware in this editorial. MotionPlus is real, but that’s it. No show floor demo = not real. Imaginary.
    FF13? Imaginary.
    FF14? Please.
    Natal? Sony motion controller? Nope.
    Metroid 4? Fake.
    However, I am excited about Golden Sun 3, which did have a show floor demo, and is therefore real.
    They had an offsite demo of OnLive, so that’s real too.

    When considering the “best of” E3, I would consider only demo’ed software and hardware. A press conference demo does not count. It has to be a floor demo.

  4. Jordan "J_Sensei" Jackson:

    Considering I’ve played Final Fantasy XIII, I’d say it’s not so imaginary. And Golden Sun 3, you might want to double check that before you profess its truth. It was on the show floor as a ‘non-interactive demo.’ I call that a trailer around here.

  5. Cortney "Alethea" Stone:


    From what J says, Sony did put on a good show and I think he’s right. But as far as games go (at least the ones I’m interested in) it’s still a tough call. Nintendo has my attention with Golden Sun DS and Metroid: Other M. Microsoft has FFXIII and Mass Effect 2 for me. I’m slowly warming up to FFXIV, and there’s also the new Trico game and White Knight Chronicles. Plenty of good stuff all around, but no one can truly walk away with the prize.

  6. John "Karlinn" Boske:

    Facebook won E3.

    And we *all* lost.

    (At least until ME2 comes out <.< >.> )

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