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Gaming Evolution
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Gaming Evolution
Gaming Evolution
2005 Electronics Entertainment Expo
Day 2: Nintendo and Their Plans


Matthew Prunty

After the first day of the E3 expo, I was thinking to myself, what could I possibly see that will equal the impact the first day had on me? I know that I didn't go see and play the Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess title for the Gamecube because it honestly wasn't on the top of my list of things to do. But thanks to Nintendo and my Nintendo Representative, I was able be privileged to go backstage behind Nintendo's booth to see the new Zelda title up close and in personal.

When I first stepped into one of the rooms backstage, its like walking into a videogame store that sold nothing but Nintendo products. There were box-arts from various upcoming titles:
  • Pokemon XD
  • Mario & Luigi 2 DS
  • Donkey Kong Country 3
  • Mario Kart DS
  • Animal Crossing

Just to name a few. One the real draws to the room, being these full-size standees, two from the upcoming Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess title, Geist, and Metroid Prime Hunters. Though the designs of them have been seen before within screenshots and video footage, seeing them up close and personal left me speechless. The other draw was a 42inch LCD HDTV showing Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. My mouth immediately hit the floor when I saw the impressive worlds that comprise this title for the Nintendo Gamecube. Never have we seen such an in-depth scope of a Legend of Zelda title. From graphics, to gameplay, to even sound/music has been reformulated to provide a whole new enticing experience for Legend of Zelda fans and new gamers to the series.

You can tell right off the bat that the creative minds over at Nintendo wanted to assure gamers that what was done for Resident Evil 4 could be done for one of their own titles, and that's just what they did. From things like the motion of the characters, to the reaction of the landscaping to your movie or fighting have all been taking into account with this installment. Link's body movement and reactions to being hit/striking an enemy are very much life-like. Running at a constant frame-rate (I believe 60fps), there were little to no slowdowns and I couldn't find anything wrong with the title at all.

You will find on some levels that there's a lot of co-operative gameplay in effect. One example of this is within this woods area (not sure if these are the Lost Woods or not) where you must rescue these trapped monkeys. There are certain areas of this world that you can explore due to the fact that Link doesn't have any jumping ability (told him to where the Jordans). With every monkey you help save, he or she will follow you, often times telling which direction to go in. When you get to large openings, one or two monkeys will jump to the top and hang from a rope. Once they do that, they help you swing across to a whole new ear, which Link couldn't or reach by himself.

I didn't have much time to play the title due to retail representatives coming into the room, but here is a brief rundown of the highlights of what I did play:
  • Fluid motion in character models
  • All real-time (in game) graphics,
  • Character models and landscape is fully detailed through the use of color and atmospheric effects
  • Controls are very responsive
  • Nostalgic feeling

Third Party Relations:
Though this year, Nintendo's has garnered a lack luster of support when compared to the likes of the Playstation 2 and the Xbox, but it doesn't stop them from bringing interesting and classic remakes to their console for their fans and supporters to enjoy.

The following is only a few titles that you can expect form third party companies for Nintendo consoles/handhelds:

Of several titles gearing up to showcase their unique gameplay experience on the Nintendo Gamecube, the most interesting one has to be Yoot Saito's Odama (GCN). Set in Medieval times, Odama can be seen as a gigantic pinball game. General Yamanouchi Kategora, in an effort to avenge his father's wrongful death, has devised a weapon on the massive scale that has never been seen before during the medieval times, known as the Odama. But unlike some weapons, this weapon doesn’t care you are friend or foe. The object of this title is to position your soldiers out of the way of the Odama, allowing it to strike you enemies and fulfill your oath of avenging your father's honor.

Prince of Persia 3 (GCN)
The transition from POP to POP2 had many gamers wondering if that was indeed the right move for Ubisoft, but I guess in the end, it paid off handsomely for them (2.3 million titles and counting across all three home consoles). In the latest chapter from the Prince, he returns home from several years of battle, only to find that even your own homeland is ravaged with war and that you can't even turn to your own father for support. From the countless battle that you encountered over the years, it has given way for a new Prince to form within side of you, a much darker and trickier prince. The only way to save yourself and your homeland is to use the skills of the Prince and the Dark Prince to rid the land of these plaguing armies to finally give peace to the land and to your very own soul.

MegaMan X Collection (GCN)
One of the most prominent franchises to grace the SNES (Super Nintendo Entertainment System), the Playstation and even the Playstation 2 returns in an all-new collection. In MegaMan X Collection, you get to relive the first six adventures of MegaMan and Zero. But as an added bonus in this action packed collection, you will receive the Japanese exclusive MegaMan: Battle and Chase, which was never released here in the states until now. So get set for the classic adventures of MegaMan as the soundtracks have been remixed once again, to add a new dimension to the overall experience, and tons more.

Donkey Kong Country 3 (GBA/DS)
The final chapter in the Donkey Kong series for the SNES make sits return to the Game Boy Advance/Micro/DS. In this epic journey, Dixie Kong and Kiddie Kong must go through “heaven and hell” in order rescue Donkey and Diddy, who couldn't seem to keep themselves out of trouble this time around. Bringing that classic feel back from the days of the SNES, prepare for some monkeying around as this adventure sets to take off.

Trace Memory (Another Code)(DS)
One of the successful titles to be released in Japan for the Nintendo DS, which already has a sequel in the works, is about to make its way to the states. In a science experiment (studying human memory) almost ten years ago, your parents suddenly disappear without a trace. You discover a letter that gives you clues that ultimate leads you to Blood Edward Island. ON this very island, you must solve several puzzles and figure out what a computer and a ghost have to do with your parents. Will you successfully find your parents, or spend the rest of your life searching…the time is almost upon us, get ready for the biggest brain teaser of your lifetime with Trace Memory.

Ultimate Spider-Man (GCN, DS)
For the first time in a Spider-Man title, you have the ability to be good or evil. With two parallel storylines, you can either play as the hero of the hour Spider-Man, or his arch nemesis, Venom. Thanks to 3D Comic Inking Technology, it is as if you are reliving a comic book in every step of the title. The expansive, free-roaming areas allow from a great since of depth through several complicated missions that will keep you glued to your handheld. Intertwining gameplay and an improved combat system over Spider-Man 2, you can expect to play this title on ends, and not be bored one bit. So as you get ready for the webslinger to swing by a retailer near you, enjoy the Spider-Man 2 experience.

The DS Experience:
For the first time with a Nintendo console, or even a handheld, Nintendo has decided to give gamers the experience of playing each other across the world. With built-in Wi-Fi and an internet connection, the DS Online Experience will allow you to play gamers nearby, or on the otherside of the world. Two examples of this are within Animal Crossing DS and Mario Kart DS.

Animal Crossing DS, the sequel to the acclaimed Gamecube platformer, takes full advantage of the capabilities of the Nintendo DS (from the touch-screen, to the Wi-Fi connection). As you create you very own neighborhood with up to three other friends (whether locally or globally) you can create clothing for one another via drawing on the touch screen. You can also send messages to one another via the touch screen and the wi-fi connections. But what's very interesting about the whole online experience is that you can visit other towns that other gamers have created all over the world via their DS, making for a massive gaming experience not seen from Nintendo before.

With Mario Kart DS, the acclaimed series goes portable and wireless. Mario Kart DS allows for up to 8 players to race head-to-head, regardless of if each one of them have the game or not. Also, you will be able to race across more than 30 tracks that have been taken from the various Mario Kart titles that were released on the SNES, N64, and Nintendo Gamecube.

Not stopping there, Nintendo is setting up their network, which would allow for downloadable content directly to the Nintendo DS. Whether it is demos from upcoming titles, or exclusives features and additions to various titles that are released, to even movie trailers from upcoming project that Nintendo are currently working on.

All in all, Nintendo this year has a solid booth if you look at the overall picture. At the current moment, they don't want to release too much information about their next generation project, so it would allow gamers, as well as analyst, to focus on what they have in store for the current generation (Nintendo Gamecube, Nintendo DS, and the Game Boy Advance series). If you have to take one thing from this experience, I would have to say that Nintendo indeed give their gamers what they want, whether the third party support is there or not. Innovation and power are one in the same that a revolutionary increase in power is an innovation, and titles like Legend of Zelda or Resident Evil 4, for driven by power, have innovative features that make it a breath of fresh air for that respective series.

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