Round Table: E3 2014 Reflections

Now that E3 is over, what did the staff think of this year’s show?

By Nintendojo Staff. Posted 06/14/2014 13:00 2 Comments     ShareThis

And so another E3 has drawn to a close. This year’s expo was certainly a memorable one; between Nintendo’s unique Digital Event and the company’s nonstop live stream of footage and commentary, fans got to experience E3 like never before. Now that the dust has settled, the staff weigh in one final time with their thoughts on this year’s event.

Anthony Vigna

This was one of the best conferences that Nintendo had in a long time! With its previous conferences, I was constantly disappointed by the lack of focus on Wii U, leaving me worried for the console’s fate. However, the entire Digital Event this year focused on Wii U games nonstop! If you’ve read my thoughts in the last round table, then you’re probably aware that I’m going absolutely crazy over the reveal of a new Star Fox game, but I’m also extremely happy to see a fresh new IP like Splatoon for the system. After that amazing presentation, I truly feel proud to be a Wii U owner.

Also, how awesome was the Nintendo Treehouse? It gave all of us something to watch immediately after the Digital Event was over, plus it was constantly running and giving us footage of upcoming games! This helped me become more invested in E3 than ever before, as I always checked the live stream to see what was going on. Also, many of the games that Nintendo plans on releasing had scarce amounts of gameplay videos, so it was fantastic to see long previews of them in action. I really hope Nintendo Treehouse makes a return next year!

Robert Marrujo

This year’s E3 was definitely one of Nintendo’s strongest. There was a healthy mixture of returning favorites and new games, providing a balance that should keep fans of all types more than happy for the foreseeable future. Splatoon was my personal favorite coming out of E3, as it’s a pretty big departure for Nintendo, yet also sits perfectly amongst the company’s already-established stable of series. Star Fox’s return was another delight, as that series has been neglected for far too long. Finally, the Amiibo figures are just too dang cool. They have a ton of potential, and I’m looking forward to collecting every single one. All in all, there was a bunch of things that Nintendo did right this year that it should be commended for.

There were a couple things I think Nintendo missed the mark on, though. No Majora’s Mask remake, after months of what seemed to be teasing of it, was a huge letdown. Metroid should have gotten some kind of announcement. The priority for that series needs to be getting a game going on Wii U, yet we heard nothing. If Nintendo had announced a new Metroid this year along with everything else, it would have really ratcheted up Nintendo’s momentum. The only other gripe I have is that so many of the games were announced for 2015, many of which I know are going to be coming out in its tail end, too. There are a good handful of games coming this year, but it would have been nice to see more.

Overall, though, this E3 was a win for Nintendo. It announced the most energetic and unique lineup of either of the big three, and I am stoked to play just about every single title that was announced. If people aren’t getting on board Wii U now with the great games already out and promised for the future, I don’t know what it’s going to take. Here’s hoping that this is the start of Nintendo’s comeback!

Anthony Pershkin

Nintendo’s was easily the best “conference” of this E3. I was sweating like crazy through the entire thing. It had everything: great presentation, exciting announcements, and release dates for almost every confirmed Wii U game.

Nintendo is finally moving in the right direction, and I was personally happy to see so much life left in Wii U during this Digital Event. I was very worried about the system’s destiny over the next two years, but now I see that Nintendo will not just quit. It’ll keep trying to turn Wii U into the successful console, no matter what.

The new Zelda looked amazing, but the biggest surprise of the show for me was Splatoon. Wii U needs some kind of competitive third-person shooter, and while it doesn’t exactly capture “dudebro” audience, Splatoon still looks incredibly imaginative and fun. Devil’s Third was also a very pleasant surprise. With Bayonetta 2 (+1), The Wonderful 101, and now Itagaki’s latest title, Wii U has more “character action games” than any current gen system (PS4, Xbox One). And as a big fan of the genre, I couldn’t be happier.

I was slightly disappointed by this year’s E3, but Nintendo’s Digital Event pretty much saved the entire thing for me. Let’s just hope Nintendo will continue to be this energetic and smart in the future.

Andy Hoover

I’m afraid this round table might turn into something of a broken record, but Nintendo earned all the praise me and my comrades are heaping upon it. After far too many years of inconsistent showings, Nintendo managed to come out and really surprise us in just about every way imaginable.

The first surprise was the fact that they managed to steal the show after strong showings from everyone else. While I wouldn’t say any of the competitors or third parties had absolutely amazing presentations, all were solid, above average performances that, given its recent history, Nintendo might only hope to match. Instead, the started things out with an entertaining, insightful, and amazingly well produced “Digital Event” that set the stage for the two major themes that intertwined and defined Nintendo’s E3– openness and innovation.

When it came to innovation, Nintendo revealed new IP, continued the deluge of new ideas being added into Smash Bros., and promised dramatic changes to the future of Zelda. But that is just the games; I think Nintendo has also forced companies to rethink how they approach E3 with its Treehouse stream. Instead of 10- to 15-minute stage shows being shuffled between IGN and Gamespot, we were given extended play sessions with live commentary from the developers and localization team, the people who know these games better than anyone. These sessions were truly impactful for me. The new trailer for Xenoblade Chronicles X was plenty cool, but tuning into the live stream a little bit later for a 40 minute gameplay demo from what appeared to be a shockingly complete build was kind of unprecedented.

This leads perfectly into the subject of openness. Once again, this whole show was built upon the idea of giving us more direct access to the developers and getting to see and hear much more than than any of us expected. Heck, we even got to see Miyamoto demo what are effectively experiments in a state that most developers would fear let seeing the light of day. And then of course there was the Smash Bros. tournament which showed Nintendo embracing a community they had previously neglected and giving them and us a much greater view of the game. Not only did this exponentially increase my excitement for the game, it actually kind of made me interested in competitive Smash Bros.!

I managed to write all this and barely mention anything about the numerous other games that managed to impress me! Oh well, I’ll let everyone else talk about Splatoon and Coden Name: S.T.E.A.M. However, I will leave with this prediction: expect everyone else to copy a lot of what Nintendo did this year.

Jon Stevens

Everyone else has already commented on how awesome the games shown off during the Digital Event looked, and I completely agree with them. Like I said in my reaction to the event, the new Legend of Zelda, Splatoon, Yoshi’s Woolly World, Star Fox, and of course Super Smash Bros. Wii U/3DS, all look fantastic and I’m hungry to get my hands on them.

I guess if I was to try and address the potential shortcomings of Nintendo at E3, it would centre on the lack of news regarding Wii U/ 3DS features. While I think that they were right to focus on games (as that is what people want to see most), I was hoping to hear more about an expanded Virtual Console and the possibility of more interconnectivity between Wii U and 3DS. I still want to see a unified VC (to some degree) and, perhaps more realistically, to be able to play more of the games that I could play on Wii’s VC on my Wii U.

Overall though, that is more wishful thinking than a criticism of Nintendo’s showing at E3. The games looked great, there were plenty of surprises, and the Digital Event was presented in a typically charming Nintendo style. 2015 is shaping up to be a good year for games and I can’t wait to see more!

Marc Deschamps

It’s going to be hard not to repeat my feelings from earlier in the week, but Nintendo really blew me away this year. This was one of the absolute best E3s I have ever seen from the company, and as a fan, it really made me happy to see them show the world what the Wii U can do.

Part of me would have liked to see the 3DS get a little more attention, but let’s be honest: it didn’t need it. The 3DS has a great library and the install base has grown significantly over the last few years. I wouldn’t have minded seeing a couple more games announced for the handheld, but Nintendo knew where they needed to focus their attention, and I can’t fault them for that.

For me, what it comes down to is that I feel way more excited and confident about the future of the Wii U than I did before this week. And I’m more than willing to bet I’m not the only one.

What are your overall thoughts on this year’s E3? Did you like Nintendo’s unique approach to covering the event? Let us know in the comments!

2 Responses to “Round Table: E3 2014 Reflections”

  • 402 points
    geoffrey says...

    The entire Treehouse concept was pure genius. I watched it from when it went live until when it went offair both Wednesday and Thursday. (It seems I have no life…) To steal a tweet from Jim Sterling: “Nintendo Treehouse is what happens when a publisher is confident and proud of its games and doesn’t need to show CGI lies for five minutes.”

    Every single game they had at E3 looks like a blast to play. The only ones I probably won’t get is Smash Bros, and that’s just because I am catastrophically horrible at every Smash Bros games; and at this point Kirby because it looks like a redo of the DS one. Granted, they can still sell me on that one in the coming months.

    Splatoon, Yoshi’s Wooly World, Mario Maker, Captain Toad, Bayonetta 2… I must have them all.

  • 288 points
    JPtheNintendoFan says...

    I’m sold on almost everything that was previewed during Nintendo’s digital event. The only game I’m not 100% sold on is Splatoon. I’m glad that Nintendo is creating new IP’s, but I’ve never been a fan of online shooters. Hopefully it will have a great solo campaign.

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