Haleetron is back, with a look into the future of the Penny Arcade Expo. Also known as, PAX Prime. 

Well, the end of August is approaching fast, which means that it's time for another Seattle PAX Prime! Has it been a good year? Is the next one going to be better, for the video game lovers? Allow me to gaze into my crystal ball and see what the future holds. Hmm... Let's see.... I've taken my highest dodonpachi dai ou jou score, written it down on a page of the Bible, dipped the point of my sharpie in three drops of vegetarian blood and drawn a pentagram, the green paint is freshly dried on my cosplay of a lawnmower fringe with shattered xbox cases dangling higher and thither, and now I shall cast the score into the flame of the black candle. Everyone close your eyes!

. . . I see...  That game made by the people who made "Alien Hominid" where you battle with blocks on display again- looks like it's coming along fine.

.....I see...  The Nintendo banner is hanging over a new character mashup racing game called "Love Race", where classic Nintendo characters pair up and do a cross country scavenger hunt, looking for the best deals on antiques. The Relationship Stress Meter shows in the corner of the screen as Donkey Kong's face (dressed as a marriage councilor), expresses emotions from pride to disgust. Samus and Kirby seem to be in the lead, while Icarus and Gumshoe are still back at the gas station fighting over a snack. Whoa, who just pulled up! It's the dog from duck hunt and-whose that - the purple dinosaur from Primal Rage? I didn't even know he/she was Nintendo's! OK, moving along, I see the new Zelda- it's Picasso Zelda, it looks like he's got a magic sax, and if he plays the right notes (utilizing the proper fingerings on the wii U), he walks all four directions at once, and whatever grass he cut on the way goes into your inventory, which is used to make a "grass ark", which is needed by link to fulfill his mission of going on a long sea voyage. - - - and what's this!! A new Castlevania?! Awesome! It looks like there's two main gameplay sections here: the first one sees the Original, Simon Belmont, sitting across the table from a robed merchant, playing a kind of "connect four" with icons that represent different inventories, and there are a lot this time! The Soldiers Shoelace and the Cashmere Scarf appear repeatedly, in what seems like some negotiation game. The Jewel Of Lasitude seems to the prize-- tuning forks seem easier to acquire- Simon already has 13 tuning forks. The second section is an action packed melee Round. It is a first person perspective battle through some of the regular locales,..  I see a static image of Simmon's arm at the bottom, and it looks like you control the ball at the end of his whip with your wiimote as you eliminate screaming ghosts and hunchbacks. Yes! He made it to another shop. Oh, I see, his whip has been infused with the "Spirit of the Ball". That's why he was holding his arm out like that. I'm so glad they're keeping the Castlevania spirit alive with these innovations. Anyone who's forty will love reconnecting with this. Oh, I'm about to see the title...  "Rhumba of Recalcatrance"...  Yes!

Now, into the Sony zone.

..... I see... OMG, it's an enormous raised platform with steps leading up to it, and totally constructed from old REAL playstation 2's! And standing on a raised dias in the center isTom Cruz-- wait, it's not Tom Cruz, it's a large flat-screen display with the guy from Assassin's Creed and he looks so real! I think he's just skydived through a cloud, because you can clearly see water droplets standing out on his perfectly textured skin. And that's the buzz: Assassin's Creed has new fog and low hanging clouds that you can parkour through and water droplets will accumulate on your skin and EVERYWHERE. Try and get your disguise to work when the guard scrutinizes those water droplets! Try and get through the bakery undetected now!  Hint: water and flour don't mix.

There seems to be a level where you play as an ancestor during the middle ages, named Kom Kruz, and you have an enormous list of people you have to assassinate, but you have to rush to reach them before the black plague claims them or else you don't get any points. Heavy parkour! Oh no, my view is fading,..  I see the Xbox encampment approaching...

..... I see....  Hey, I'm seeing all the same things, I think that all this stuff is also coming out on the Xbox. Oh, wait, there's something special... It's a single screen on a corner kiosk, and it's cycling through an advertisement for some shmups that came out a few years ago. Oh.  My.  G. I didn't think shmups were allowed here! I guess that this single ad must have slipped through the cracks somehow! Awesome, I'll just watch the ad cycle a few times and then catch up.

Alright! I'm back!  Where are we?  I don't recognize this place...

..... I see .... I think this must be a museum of minecraft closeup screen captures. Every screen has these big stylized single pixels on them, and they're moving around, hold on, it looks kind of like Atari squares,.. Maybe extra bad Nintendo...  I've never seen this in minecraft. Oh duh!!! I'm in the independent game section! I think some of these giant pixels are being arranged in the "arena-shmup' formation. I can tell those ones are in a "contra"  formation. Those ones are just moving Willie-Nilly! I can't tell what's going on, the squares are too big! That one has gravity I think. That one looks like a puzzle. I sure love to see young programmers taking the time to make these squares move around in innovative ways instead of ways I already like. You're ideas are great! Good job, guys! Although, to offer some helpful criticism, I really don't know hot your Tom Cruise-ish character and plot are going to be integrated into this.

Oh, it's getting dark, I think the end of the day is coming and the crystal ball is going to need some more vegetarian blood to show me more, and I chewed a fingernail during the parkour visions, so I'm no good.

I can't wait to drive out to Seattle and see it all for reals!

-Haleetron

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Tags: pax prime , video games , sony , nintendo , xbox