Sunday, October 12, 2008

TGS '08 tidbits

Just flew back from TGS yesterday morning and it was straight off to the twins b-day party, so I was a little messed up and still have a ton to catch up on. Will post pix of Tom's awesome R2 cake later.

Overall the show is down attendance-wise (at least the industry piece of it, public day numbers look like they were even bigger).

PC Gaming presence was worse than ever, with most PC games being found in the anemic PC-online section of the show, which showed a number of fat-client MMOs and VW's, and many more flash-based versions of the same. 

However, if you dug below the surface, you realized that many of the big titles/franchises have PC SKU's, and there's still some PC action going on. Which jived much better with what I saw in Akihabara on Saturday, with many high-end gaming rigs, graphics cards, and point-of-sale displays featuring games like Monster Hunter, which is huge in Japan.

Thursday after the show I went to a big developer get-together for Tokyo-based expat gamedev community which normally swells when TGS is going on. Got to hang and talk shop with many friends including Simon, Jane, Casey and others. Lots of interesting conversation which I might have some future posts about if given the time.

Friday was dinner with Alice, Cory, Aleks, and Ben (oh! Just realized it was an all-blogger dinner!). Food was yummy and conversation also good, though after the 2nd day of the show and a few bottles of saki, bedtime came early.

Best looking game of the show, IMHO was still Little Big Planet (like last year), it's definitely a platform game-changer. 

Best game of the show was We Ski and Snowboard for the Wii. This'll finally get me to buy a Wii and a Wii fit to boot. I didn't try skiing, but they *nailed* snowboarding. If you think about it, it maps very well to a balance board, as all you are doing is leaning heel-to-toe when snowboarding at a good clip. Here I am giving it a go and refusing to get off and give Aleks a turn. (The person before me refused to get off too. a good sign!)

More notes when I get some time, but in the meantime, what I hope to make a recurring feature: 

The 5 worst (and therefore best) named games of TGS!

5. Anything Gundam. Because there are too many and they all bleed together after a while.

4. Bloom blocks. Because it sounds a little too similar to a certain popular Wii title from a certain Hollywood director. Too be fair, it was a student project, did involve blocks that bloomed, and was one of the better games of TGS, at least in terms of a really snappy satisfying core game mechanic. The casual industry will surely rip it off in short order :-)

3. Worthless Story. At least they are honest about it.

2. Aero Afro. A beat-match ghetto fighting game where disco dudes fly over an urban landscape, duking it out with bad-ass beats!

1. A lot of Broccoli. Because it's not just broccoli. It's a LOT of broccoli! And that's something my mom told me was good for me. And because their graphic is awesome.