GDC 07: 6 Days Left

March 1, 2007 at 10:49 pm Leave a comment

People always ask me, “Why do you care about GDC so much?”

I reply: “Because this generation’s like no other”.

It really is. We’re talking three manufacturers who each have different things going for them. SONY is strong in the graphics and longevity category with the PS3. Nintendo has the it factor with the Wii. Microsoft has the third-party gaming support for the XBOX 360. With all of these pros, it’s really hard to predict a winner in this current next-generation race, no matter what some pundits are saying. In the handheld market, you’re watching SONY and Nintendo duking it out. Many people marked off the PSP as a contender, but if games like MGS and Monster Hunter are any indication, the PSP might be back in the race.

This year at GDC, Microsoft seems to be skipping (XBOX fans will find their haven in the third-party gaming support that might appear at GDC), but SONY and Nintendo aren’t. After the death of E3, there is no longer a launching pad for big information to come on the way. Thus, there is no reason to wait one year for big news to appear. Gaming conferences will be spread around throughout the year, providing gamers with enough content 24/7 to sidetrack them from everything else in life.

I’m watching for Phil Harrison’s keynote on March 7th (surprisingly 6 days are left until this big keynote). The SONY guru says that big plans/surprises are ahead for PSP software and hardware. Are we seeing a movie download site? Are we seeing more mobile support? Are we seeing more peripherals? Are we seeing a worthwhile firmware upgrade? Is SONY giving up to the homebrewers? Furthermore, how will SONY deny that the PS3 is a failure amidst slow sales and Nintendo’s WII overtaking it? What third parties will show their support for the PSP? Will Castlevania and Final Fantasy make appearances?

Then, Nintendo’s keynote is the following day. We expect it to be a stellar combination of new and daring Wii channels and possibly announcement of the stateside release of the DS Opera Browser, but the games will truly dominate. How will Nintendo tackle analysts who call the Wii an “impulse” buy? How will Nintendo try to remain the top handheld game maker (and does this mean replacing the DS Lite with some thing even “lite”r?)? The questions are endless.

Gaming shows are sort of like “tornadoes”. Before they hit, it seems as if everything is calm. Same in the blogosphere. But, no joke. Come March 7th, we’ll all be glued to GDC.



We’re #10! Shove It, Nintendo fanboys…

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