Features// SPOnG's Review of the Year 2010: June

Posted 28 Dec 2010 09:01 by
This is a continuing SPOnG retrospective of the year’s events.


Who says June doesn’t release any games? You better shut your mouth, if you know what’s good for you. June does whatever June wants. It’s just that June prefers to focus on the future rather than the present, that’s all. See, now look - you’ve gone and hurt June’s feelings. Say you’re sorry. Go on.

The truth is, this was a killer month for big-name releases (No More Heroes 2, Sin & Punishment 2, Demon’s Souls, Doctor Who: The Adventure Games, Super Mario Galaxy 2, Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, Naughty Bear, Singularity), once again breaking the unwritten law of Summer release schedules.

It was busier than most months for one other reason, though - an event that had publishers scrambling to get their upcoming projects to the media, the media scrambling to report on these projects to the gamers, and gamers scrambling through websites and internet video streams to see these latest updates.

It was only the biggest gaming event on the calendar - E3. In these days of cynicism and extended console lifespans, there wasn’t a lot of expectation for the big companies to announce anything special this year. Thankfully for everyone involved, there were still a few surprises up the sleeves of Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo that made the show a rather entertaining one.

Microsoft lifted the lid on a redesign of the Xbox 360 hardware (E3 2010: Xbox 360 Slim Ships This Week - $299 / £199 - PIX, 14th June). There were rumours of a ‘Slim’ model being unveiled, but nobody was prepared for the rather sleek black design that Don Mattrick revealed. A lot of the show was heavily focused on the Kinect peripheral, and Microsoft had even staged a second press event the night before dedicated to the device. We previewed Harmonix’s Dance Central, and reported of plans to launch the tech in the Autumn (Foxconn to Ship MS Natal in Time for Halo Reach, 11th June).

What made the gaggle of journalists go gaga at the company’s press conference was the news that every audience member would be getting a free Xbox 360 S. Sometimes the job we do is just so hard. Joe was one of the lucky journos that sat through that conference - you can read his thoughts (in a rather cool, retrospective stylee) here.

Shortly after E3, the new Xbox 360s went on sale - to the dismay of one early adopter who noticed that the units were prone to overheating problems (Xbox 360 Exhibits Overheating Problems, “Red Dot of Death”, 25th June). Whoops.

It’s fair to say that Nintendo, after a rather dismal press conference in 2009, pulled out all the stops for this year’s E3. Showcases of The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, Goldeneye 007, Mario Sports Mix, Disney Epic Mickey, Kirby’s Epic Yarn and Donkey Kong Country Returns were followed by the world’s first look at the 3DS handheld and a smattering of potential launch titles (E3 2010: Kid Icarus is Nintendo 3DS Killer App, 15th June). Joe had a good go on the device and had some pleasant things to say about it.
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