E3 09: What kind of games are the big three backing for the future?

Imagine you're Sony, Nintendo or Microsoft. You've got an hour or two with the world's assembled press hanging on your every word to show them how the next 12 months and beyond are going to pan out. What would you do?

Would you concentrate on your target audience's favourite kind of game? Or would you try to cover as many bases as possible?

With the dust settling on E3, we've collated all the data from the big three's keynote speeches and converted it into graphs to show you exactly which pies each company is proud to have its grubby fingers in. Is Microsoft still pushing shooters? Is Nintendo still about sports games? The answers are all below.  

Let's start with Nintendo, who showed the least number of games overall per platform in their press conference presentation. This graph shows the number of games demonstrated or announced for each popular genre.

Remember, this is just covering the companies' own press presentations. So for instance, Ubisoft showed off their Turtles brawler for Wii at their own event, but Nintendo didn't show it themselves.

Look at that - not a single new racing game or fighting game in the Nintendo keynote. And after they made such an effort to appease the hardcore this year, too. Ah well - 'keep playing Mario Kart', eh Cammie?

Above: Yeah, so it was last year, but did she really think we'd forget?

We've classed C.O.P. as an action game as it combines driving and shooting, but even so, that's just one game, and not a proper racer.

The most sobering note is the number of 'non-games' they showed, such as the animation application Flipnote Studio for DSi, Wii Fit Plus and the frankly ridiculous Wii Vitality. At least they didn't save that one for the final big reveal - they so would have done that last year. Sports games come out top for Wii, which isn't so surprising, and DS comes up with a whole heap of RPGs.

Where Nintendo showed a handful of carefully selected games, Sony simply opened the floodgates and showed a lot. Of everything. With a press conference lasting two hours, there was a chance to look at key titles in depth such as ModNation Racers and God of War III. The strength and depth of Sony's line-up is hard to ignore:

Where Nintendo showed videos of people playing launch game Wii Sports and the months-old Mario Kart Wii, Sony concentrated on the new.

Of some 35 PSP games and 46 PS3 titles, action games were the most prominent, featuring elements of other genres and blending them to create varied and compelling new experiences. Arkham Asylum, Ghostbusters and The Last Guardian are all examples of that, and all are looking superb.

Shooters make a strong showing, and racing fans are going to be spoilt for choice over the next year on PS3. And with Gran Turismo on PSP, Sony arguably didn't need to show another handheld racer. There's something for everyone, and lots of it.
Surprisingly, standard shooting games were not given much of a showing in the PSP's superb line-up of games. Maybe it's due to the single analog stick. Like the DS before it, PSP showed plenty of RPGs. And the announcement of Final Fantasy VII coming to PlayStation Store was the icing on the cake. RPG fans have plenty to play on the go/toilet this year.

With only one platform to talk about, there were always going to be fewer games on show overall at Microsoft's keynote. But while the quality was undeniable, with superb showings from Modern Warfare 2 and Splinter Cell: Conviction, the spread was not quite so impressive:

The bars simply aren't as high in this graph. While that doesn't necessarily mean there will be fewer games released on Xbox 360 this coming year, it does mean there were fewer games shown to the assembled press. But with no traditional platform games (3D or otherwise), no fighting games despite Tekken 6 nearing completion and only the multi-platform Final Fantasy XIII to show for the RPG genre, it was a show full of shooting and general action.

It's what the console's known for, certainly, and nobody would argue with the potential quality of Modern Warfare 2, Left 4 Dead 2 or Metal Gear Solid Rising. But none of those games are exclusives.

Project Natal may well have been the most impressive new innovation at the show and has undoubtedly stolen the most headlines, but the depth of Microsoft's traditional games line-up was arguably not quite as strong as Sony's. We do get two new Halo games, though... so don't expect the console war to stop any time soon.

05 Jun, 2009

Super Mario Galaxy 2 sums up all of Nintendo's wrongs
How the great hardcore hope could be a terrible omen


Why wait? E3's hottest games reviewed now
Dare you ignore our authoritative snap judgments based upon fleeting first impressions?


Sony relaunches PSP with a superb line-up
Plus video of the PSP Go in action, direct from the showfloor


  • Daywalkr - June 10, 2009 6:37 p.m.

    360 is going to destroy. Modern Warfare 2, L4D2, two Halo games, MGS, Project Natal, Operation Flashpoint, Forza 3, Splinter Cell, Bioshock 2, i forgot something... Someone help me out here
  • 98tyger - June 10, 2009 3:27 a.m.

    nice... thats all im saying
  • GR_JustinTowell - June 9, 2009 8:16 a.m.

    @ renov93 - that would be Dead Space: Extraction and Resident Evil: Darkside Chronicles.
  • renov93 - June 8, 2009 7:47 p.m.

    what two horror games are there for the wii?
  • Titanguy654 - June 8, 2009 6:32 p.m.

    Sony with the most action games? Well, I know my 2009 platform.
  • Defguru7777 - June 8, 2009 1:27 a.m.

    The best new games announced were Crackdown 2, Halo: Reach, Golden Sun DS, Metroid: Other M, Super Mario Galaxy 2, and New Super Mario Bros. Wii.
  • NullG7 - June 7, 2009 9:01 p.m.

    Well still IF I has a PS3 I could count all the games I would get with one hand, and IF I had a Wii lets I would make some five year old kid very happy or make my wallet very fat.
  • Coolbeans69 - June 7, 2009 4:58 p.m.

    Wow looks like sony's back in the console wars again! Maybe ill have a reason to get a ps3
  • DeathByGamer - June 7, 2009 3:57 p.m.

    Hey, good article. Impressed with Sony's lineup. May finally blow the dust off my PSP.
  • Spybreak8 - June 7, 2009 4:30 a.m.

    AHaha, are you guys accountants?
  • CandiedJester - June 6, 2009 10:56 p.m.

    Wait, did you count Shadow Complex in Microsofts graph? Or does it not count? Because it is only for XBLA, and it is a platformer. Or at least, thats what I would call it.
  • Demonflare - June 6, 2009 4:44 p.m.

    Yea I think Justin has made the best articles! ;o
  • Ninja-KiLLR - June 6, 2009 3:35 p.m.

    i didnt realize ps3 had that many games. which is great!!! cant wait for MAG!!!
  • CreeplyTuna - June 6, 2009 11:14 a.m.

    when i first played the psp i said to my brother,"sony has to make a resident evil for the psp" the controls should work superbly, i can't wait
  • norid - June 6, 2009 7:48 a.m.

    in my opinion Justin has some of the best written articles keep up the good work
  • oreomonkey - June 6, 2009 3:25 a.m.

    Ha, PS3 sucks, and I'll tell you why, PM me.
  • Bartemious - June 5, 2009 10:47 p.m.

    oh wait, my bad...that was ubisoft
  • lovinmyps3 - June 5, 2009 10:27 p.m.

    Is Rising coming to PC? I don't care in the least but it doesn't seem likely that they would release it for PC.
  • helix92 - June 5, 2009 6:17 p.m.

    Ohhhh. The one 360 game I actually want. Thanks anyway guys.
  • oryandymackie - June 5, 2009 6:08 p.m.

    Yeah, sure the Wii and DS are branching into horror. Nintendo should stick to what they are obviously now best at: Horrific cutesy-wutesy (cough cough outdated graphics) Party Games!! And while they're at it, maybe they should leave the digitally-re-animated corpse of Mario alone, instead of painting enough makeup on him to make him look alive and pasting it on whatever box they pump out in their lunch hour. God, I hate the Wii right now. Sony aren't looking too good now either

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