The Korea Herald


Blockbusters rule E3 videogame kingdom

By 양승진

Published : June 6, 2011 - 14:05

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SAN FRANCISCO (AFP) - Blockbuster titles and powerhouse consoles will rule as videogame makers from around the world meet in Los Angeles next week for the premier Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3).

   Hotly anticipated games will build on established franchises with slick play mechanics, film-like graphics and increasing sensitivity to how much people love playing online with friends or on-the-go with mobile devices.

   "E3 will be a strange combination of everything from blockbuster retail games like 'Call of Duty' and 'Battlefield' all the way down to apps, social games, and digital downloads," said TechSavvy Global analyst Scott Steinberg.

   The latest installments of "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare" and "Battlefield"

will duke it out for the hearts of hardcore shooter fans.

   The third chapter in a "Mass Effect" science fiction action game promises a glorious finale to the trilogy. Glimpses will also be provided of new editions of hits "Prototype," "InFAMOUS," "Drake's Uncharted" and "Batman."

   French videogame titan Ubisoft will continue an "Assassin's Creed" saga set in Italy during the Renaissance and introduce new antics for its zany "Raving Rabbids."

   "Like the film industry, people want the big budget, everything-thrown-at-it experience and they also want the American Idol show,"

said Martin Rae, president of nonprofit industry group Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences.

   The onus is on gamemakers to deliver must-have titles for play using motion sensing controls recently added to Microsoft Xbox 360 and Sony PlayStation 3 consoles.

   "It is not so much pressure as it is opportunity to think about new ways to entertain," said Ubisoft North America president Laurent Detoc. "It is a very exciting time."

   Nintendo is expected to ramp-up the console competition with a second-generation Wii rumored to be more muscular than rivals and feature touch-screen capabilities in controls.

   The Wii successor to debut when E3 opens on Tuesday was expected to be among expo highlights. The console is due to be released next year.

   Sony wukk show off its Next Gen-Portable (NGP) handset that promises to "put the power of the PS3 right in the palm of your hand."

   The Japanese consumer electronics giant will be intent on making a splash at E3 to shake off the taint of a massive cyberattack that derailed its online gaming network until a week before the expo.

   While the spotlight will be on major titles, games crafted for play on smartphones or tablet computers will be in the wings.

   Game publishers are tailoring versions of console titles for mobile gadgets and envision one day being able to let people start playing on one device and then continue on others.

   "For a long time the menu of games was thought to be just chicken, meat and potatoes,"  Konami senior public relations manager Brandon Cox said at the company's pre-E3 event in San Francisco. "Now you have a lot of salads, a lot of fruit... It is important to touch people where ever they are."

   Electronic Arts plans a glitzy press conference in a theatre for console titles, but has a suite in a nearby hotel devoted to smartphone and tablet games by Chillingo, Playfish, EA Mobile, and Hasbro.

   Console videogames have been evolving to include online play with friends and stories stretched with digital content made available for downloaded on the Internet.

   Console videogames are also evolving, with compelling storylines to reward players for spending $60 on a triple-A title instead of a few dollars or less on social or mobile games.

   "Good stories make the world of difference," said Marc Petit, senior vice president of media and entertainment at Autodesk, which makes technology used to create videogames.

   Freshly released "L.A. Noire" lets people play homicide detectives in 1947 Hollywood, while players choices in "Mass Effect" follow them from game-to-game shaping outcomes.

   Publishers are confident that new "screens" will broaden the gaming audience to include just about anyone.

   "There really has never been a better time to be a gamer," Steinberg said. "The options are absolutely staggering."



올해 E3 최대 화제의 게임은?

    (서울=연합뉴스) 박대한 기자 = 세계 최대 게임박람회인 E3 2011(Electronic En tertainment Expo 2011) 행사가 7일(현지시간) 개막과 함께 사흘간의 공식 일정에 들어간다.

    E3는 미국 엔터테인먼트 소프트웨어 협회(Entertainment Software Association, ESA)에서 주최하는 행사로 1995년 미국에서 처음 열렸다.

    첫 E3에서 소니, 닌텐도, 세가 등이 각각 새 게임기를 발표하며 주목을 받았고 이후에도 글로벌 게임업체들은 E3를 통해 신작이나 차세대 게임기 등을 공개해 왔다 .

    초기 E3는 연말 성수기에 게임 타이틀 라인업과 수량을 확보해야 하는 게임  도 매업자들이 주로 참관하는 행사에 그쳤으나 1990년대 후반부터 다양한 볼거리와  함 께 미디어와 소비자들의 높은 관심을 얻게 됐다. 

    지난해 E3에는 총 90개국에서 게임업계 관련 종사자와 관람객 4만5천600여명이 참관했다.

    LA 컨벤션센터에서 열리는 올해 행사에는 80여개국 200여개 게임업체와  관련업 계 종사자, 취재진 등이 참가한다.

    공식 개막에 앞서 6일 마이크로소프트(MS)와 소니가 각각 미디어 콘퍼런스를 열 고 행사 시작을 알릴 예정이다.

    소니는 플레이스테이션포터블(PSP)의 뒤를 이을 신작 휴대용 게임기(NGP)를  공 개하고 MS는 동작인식게임 키넥트(KINECT)용 타이틀을 대거 선보일 계획이다.

    국내에서는 넥슨과 블루홀스튜디오가 공식 부스를 마련하고 국산 온라인게임 알 리기에 나선다.

    지난해 E3에 처음으로 3종의 게임을 출품했던 넥슨은 정식 서비스를 시작한 '마 비노기 영웅전'(현지명 빈딕터스), 올해 서비스할 예정인 '드래곤네스트' 등을 소개 한다.

    다중접속역할수행게임(MMORPG) '테라'의 북미·유럽 서비스를 준비 중인 블루홀 스튜디오는 북미법인 엔매스 엔터테인먼트를 통해 단독 부스를 마련하고 홍보  활동 을 펼칠 계획이다.

    엔매스는 '테라'의 오프라인 패키지 유통 계약을 맺은 아타리와 함께 '테라'의 서구화 버전 시연대 등을 운영한다.

    이밖에 액티비전, 스퀘어에닉스, 유비소프트, 세가, 디즈니, 에픽게임스 등  세 계적인 게임업체들이 부스를 마련하고 관람객을 만날 예정이다.