Thursday, 14 April 2011

Gadget Show exhibition 2011, and the 3DS Review

Gagdet Show LIVE at the NEC, 13/04/11.
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I went to the gadget show again yesterday. This time I was slightly more planned. This time around, the game zone was in a separate hall due to its size, so we decided to go there last. First of all, my mum, sister and brother as well as myself went to the Wolverhampton University stand since our dad was one of the exhibitors. We wandered about for a bit before heading to the gadget show live. The line was a bit ridiculous, as it stretched all the way from the entrance to the back of the last hall, of which there were three (and if you've ever been to these things, you would know one hall in itself is massive).
The gadget show live was quite random, there were robots, the five presenters, some competitions etc. but rather than bore you with details, lets skip to the section where we play videogames. After lunch anyway.
After the gadget show ended, we went out into the food court, which was attached to the game zone, and whilst it took us ages, we eventually found a table, and ate. Planning for this, we had already brought packed lunches, and the lines were as usual, ridiculous. And after that, we went to the game zone (hooray).
There was a large closed off section near the entrance where a line went around, full of people eager to see the 3DS, which proved humorous as I walked past with my 3DS, catching a few glances. There were also a few other people with 3DSs, as I got atleast 3 people on my streetpass. Okay, for a large convention like this that's relatively pathetic, but yeah whatever. More importantly we saw some cool software for the source engine, call Sixense that utilised motion control for some really wacky puzzles due to come out on a Portal 2 DLC, for the PC no less.
After some more wandering we found some consoles and I did playtest of Portal 2 on the Xbox 360, proving that my skills were not enough to think with portals, or Portal 2 just got a lot harder, or maybe its just that I really, really hate stick controllers for FPS games. Sorry console fans, but stick with your street fighter games and auto aim systems when you do try to FPS (yes Halo, I'm looking at you). The puzzle would have been fairly simple too, but I don't see how console controllers are supposed to work with any decent degree of accuracy, especially when Chell is in freefall and about to plummet into 'troubling water'. On that note, Portal 2 is preloadable today! Many of the computers and consoles were being showcased with Crysis 2, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, Portal 2, and a few other sequel games usually ending with 2.
Later, we went back to the main hall, where some secluded area had a game bus, where they held the 'pubs vs. pros' they do every exhibition. My brother entered and came close second on the leaderboard, which earned him a stainless steel thermos with FNATIC's logo thingy on it - Something money can't buy (to my knowledge) unlike the no.1 prize, which was some silly netbook.
Overall it was cool, and maybe next time I'll try the pub vs pro thing, colon capital d exclamation mark.

Also Minecraft was being used to showcase one of the computers (update 1.5 woo).

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The 3DS

The 3DS came a few weeks ago which I got on release, which in retrospect is rather silly considering the only games out there right now are, to put it bluntly, terrible. Nintendogs + Cats, Proevolution Soccer, Sims 3 etc. are all pretty bad. The two games (and hidden third) are pretty awesome in themselves, and badass in comparison to the launch titles mentioned previously. There's the Augmented Reality and Face Raiders, which are both addictive and fun, and come as part of the 3DS system. A hidden third game in Streetpass allows you to play a simple, silly RPG using people you've met in streetpass.
The console also came with the at least reasonably decent Street Fight IV (4), but I'm not too interested in that. It also comes with stuff you'd find in the DSi, but more impressively, it also sports a 3D camera. Admittedly it does pull of the 3D effect, but unless you're taking a picture of a wall stretching from about 30m away to your face, it doesn't really have much impact beyond a bunch of parts of the images collated at different distances.
The 3DS is nice, but if you are going to buy it, wait a while, let the prices drop, and be patient until the good games come out, like Paper Mario, or Legend of Zelda.

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