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Dear E3

Dear Electronic Entertainment Expo:

Hey, it’s Elrood, your faithful follower.  I always get excited for you, ever year!  New games, new consoles, industry trends, giant enemy crabs, the list goes on.  I’m with you on this year too, excited.  But I have some concerns.  I see things…happening that YOU are all excited about, but it’s leaving the rest of us kind of worried.  There’s so much to like, so I’m writing to you in hopes that we can discuss a few things.  But don’t fret E3!  Positives and negatives.  I just want you to have a good show and really knock our socks off this year.

The first thing we need to discuss is new consoles.  Microsoft and Sony you guys are up first, because you’re basically trying to do the same thing.  Which is beat down the other guy.  Fair enough!  I commend both of you for sticking to your guns and saying new consoles will not be discussed this E3.  To be fair, I’m not sure I believe any of that.  But I am heartened that you’re taking the time and not rushing these things.  The temptation will be there to be first (well, second, Nintendo is going to be first, but they’re such a different breed at this point I’m not sure it matters), especially since part of the reason Xbox has outperformed Playstation in this generation is because it had a one year head start.  This cycle isn’t quite ready to go yet (look at the awesome games coming NEXT year!) so we don’t need to make this a sprint.  But I have a couple of requests:

(Insert Monday Night Football theme here)

  • Both the new Xbox and Playstation NEED to carry over account information.  Achievements, user names, and any downloadable games.  Physical backward compatibility would be nice, but I realize that it’s expensive and will probably get cut.  I’m ok with that.  But I am not ok with having paid for sweet Xbox Live arcade games like Trials Evolution or Shadow Complex and then having them no longer function.  Consoles are just basically PC’s at this point, and I purchased that software.  I’m scared because I can see the press release in my head already “Due to issues in running older software, any digital titles purchases will not carry over…..”.  Don’t be that guy, Sony and Microsoft.  And if either of you are dumb enough to not have achievements or trophies carry over….well, I really can’t help you.  But I don’t think you are!
  • We live in a social age.  I’m constantly connected to my friends.  I like them showing them things.  I can take a picture or video with my phone and have it up on the internet in seconds if I see or do something awesome in real life.  However, because I’m using a fake name to write about games on the internet, I don’t do that many awesome real life things.  However, I do perform extreme feats of awesome in video games.  The ability to open a menu in ANY GAME, rewind a few minutes, and record a clip that can be shared instantly on the internet and on the console itself to friends of my choice would be huge.  Pull off a sweet headshot?  Shoot down a helicopter with a tank in a Battlefield match?  Be able to show people and not just tell.  Bigger hard drives and faster internet speeds make this possible.  I think we’re ready.

Break it down Mario!

So, Nintendo!  I’ll admit, I have no idea what the hell you’re doing.  I used to love you.  Now….well I mean, I wish you the best, but you’re just not that interesting to me anymore.  I think you have the most riding on this E3.  For you, it’s about showing how this Wii U is the next big thing.  The Wii was a massive success, but how many of those Wii owners are going to upgrade?  Probably not as many as you’d like unless what shows up is truly amazing.  I’m not sure what kind of things you have planned for the tablet controller.  But smacking the screen at various piles of shovelware is NOT the way to go.  Nintendo my friend, you’ve always had the most unusual ideas.  Show me SOMETHING we’re not expecting or the success of your first system is going to be hard to duplicate.

I’m not worried about most of the games.  Assassins Creed 3, OH MY GOD YES PLEASE.  Borderlands 2, Halo 4…..all good.  But hey, EA?  Yeah, you made the letter, congratulations!  I have great concern about a franchise near and dear to my heart, Dead Space.  I loved the first two games.  LOVED THEM.  Survival horror with a little bit of action and AMAZING atmosphere, perfect.  It’s why I loved Resident Evil 4.  So I don’t quite follow your Dead Space 3 has a cooperative mode plan. Let’s take a look back.  Everybody loves Resident Evil 4!  Capcom is riding high and us nerds are chomping at the bit for Resident Evil 5.  The game comes out and….well, it was “ok”.  It was an action game.  The atmosphere was mostly gone and, worst of all, suddenly in a game about being scared you had an AI PARTNER with you at all times.  That said silly things and just carried ammo.  It totally killed the scary part.  So EA, you bring Dead Space along, and it’s a return to what I loved.  Tight spaces, story that was out there but still possible to follow, and SCARY.  Alone!  People laud Dead Space as the true successor to the survival horror genre since Resident Evil abandoned it, we’re excited for more in Dead Space 3….and you announce a COOPERATIVE MODE?  Now, I’ve heard that it’s not forced upon us ala RE5.  That if you play single player that character will just not be there.  That’s good.  But I worry EA.  That you thought this was a good idea.  That the development time to put in the cooperative mode could take away from the rest of the campaign.  That what happened to Resident Evil is happening to you.  I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt this time.  I will play Dead Space 3 no matter what, but please please, PLEASE.  When I see this game at E3, I want to feel scared.  Take a look at whatever footage you have set for the presentation right now, I’ll wait.  Am I going to be freaked out?  Am I going to be in Isaac Clarke’s shoes again, wondering if I’ll ever again meet anybody who isn’t insane, dead, or worse?  If the answer is no…..well, that’s truly scary.

So there you go E3, just a few suggestions and concerns.  I’m looking forward to seeing you next week, it’s a wonderful time of year.  As Roland from Borderlands would say “It’s like Christmas!”.



Isaac, it’s ok buddy, let’s hope EA doesn’t ruin your games…..


33 Responses

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