The press conferences are done, the smoke is settled, and the actual show can now begin. This is the time of year where I must now declare a “winner” of this show. Three hardware developers showed what they had to offer to us, the gamers for the holiday season, and beyond. Microsoft drew first blood while Sony came in to match. Nintendo got to end it all with its show of software. I often have a very easy time figuring out whom won these conferences, but this year is very difficult. Each conference both has great strengths and some serious weaknesses compared to prior years. Let’s do a quick rundown of each company’s conference.
Sunday June 10th, 4pm EST
Microsoft came with a ton of games to show. Their conference clocked in at about 90+ minutes, and there wasn’t a dull moment. We were treated to a barrage of trailers of games. Microsoft was about the games, and they got Xbox owners excited about games coming in the fall, and beyond.
Microsoft did a shit job of convincing people that the Xbox was the place to game. The trailers that carried the conference were from games coming out on other systems. Microsoft showed a few of their own games, but a lot of them are still a ways away. They didn’t make a stellar case for buying any of the Xbox family of systems now, or this holiday season. Microsoft has so little faith in its current exclusives that they paid other developers to show their games first at the Microsoft conference with a lot of misleading jargon to convince people their experience will be great best on the Xbox One.
Monday June 11th, 9pm EST
Sony took the quality a quantity approach, and brought just a few of their own games. Instead of relying on flashy teasers, Sony gave us extended gameplay footage of the few games they brought. While there were some third party offerings going on other platforms, most of Sony’s show was what they as a company had to offer. They did a better job of making a case for why PlayStation is the place to play games. Sony had enough faith in their exclusives where they didn’t need to bring a ton of other studios over to build hype. The Resident Evil 2 remake reveal as well as the exclusive Kingdom Hearts 3 footage was a nice touch. Though these games will be on other platforms, the PlayStation was the original home for these titles. The Sony exclusives were the real show stealers, and really shined. They made me excited to be a PS4 owner in this generation.
The conference pacing sucked. There was a musical performance, followed by a speech which was followed by a game play segment followed by talking. This was done because the show was more interactive for those who were there. This doesn’t work well for people at home watching from IGN, Twitch, or YouTube. They did an okay job at times of slipping in reveals during these segments, but it still felt slow. As with Microsoft’s conference, there’s a lot of stuff in there not coming out any time soon.
Tuesday June 12th, 12pm EST
Nintendo did a solid job of not being overly ambitious and focusing on games coming out this year, and early next spring. They did a nice job giving an in-depth look at Super Smash Bros Ultimate, and not only guaranteed a purchase by me, I can also finally part ways with my WiiU which has been collecting dust. A new Mario Party title was very welcome for me as a fan of the series.
There were some notable omissions as Nintendo chose to focus on a 1 year window. Nintendo also left out some important things coming out this year like the online service, and the new Yoshi game.
I now must declare a winner. It’s a tough call, but I gotta hand it to Nintendo. Though their showing was sparse, they made up for that with games I can play this year. Nintendo did a good job of ensuring that this holiday season will be stellar for them. Smash was the show stealer, and made me a day one buyer. I also have faith that 2019 will be the year the Switch really overtakes this country. While Microsoft and Sony had good games to show, we barely have any concrete dates for these titles. It’s been a blast commenting on this show, until next year.
Flemmings Beaubrun is an avid gamer and lover of music. When not working, Flemmings likes to spend his time whipping up dank beats for the masses. He also spends his weekends thrift shopping for rare video games and obscure electronics. Other times he’s in front of a TV with a giant bowl of cereal enjoying shows from the 90s.