Fan Expo 2012: Quick Notes

Fan Expo is in the books. It was an eventful one for Steff, and I. Here’s some notes from the show!

We got to play the Wii U!

At the Warner Bros. booth, we got to try Scribblenauts Unlimited, and Batman: Arkham City Armoured Edition. First, let’s talk about the controller. While I did not get enough hands-on time with it to pass a final judgment, I will say that my initial time with it was rather disorienting. I had a hard time coming to grips with the size of the controller, the button layout, and how to play a game while managing two different screens that both aren’t in my immediate line of sight. My gut says that with practice, I’d figure it out, and gaming on it would be fine for the most part. On day 2, I tried using it again, and the awkwardness sort of went away naturally.

As for the games, Scribblenauts Unlimited appears to be another logical expansion of the formula, as you can create objects, use adjectives to remix an object, and then attach another object to it. The game also appears to have an open-world structure, which could be fun. Batman: Arkham City on the Wii U appeared to be on par with the 360/PS3 versions, though I stumbled my  way through the demo due to my unfamiliarity with the controller. I will try and play more of both of these games, as well as ZombiU, to get a better feel for the Wii U before I decide whether or not to pick one up on launch.

I played some upcoming fighting games

Both Injustice: Gods Among Us, and PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale were on hand at the show. The former puts a twist on the gameplay mechanics behind the latest Mortal Kombat, which is a good thing. Using Batman, I beat a few button-mashers to a pulp, as I was able to figure out a few special moves, and combos. However, Steff and I faced off the next day and she rocked me pretty hard. Getting hands-on time with it at this point has gotten me a lot more excited about where this game could go, as I believe it has the potential to be a winner.

PlayStation All-Stars did not surprise me at all. It looks really good, and was fun in the same way Super Smash Bros. is, though it’s not really pushing the boundaries of creativity. Nevertheless, the lines were always huge for that game at the show, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see it become a hit.

I ignored some other games at the show

Though the show has never had a big focus on games as it does other aspects of nerd culture, the lineup of games was pretty good this year. Some of the titles at the show that I didn’t get any hands-on with included:

Halo 4 (had a chance, but passed on it because Halo has never been my thing)
– Forza: Horizon (not a racing sim guy)
Assassin’s Creed 3 (super excited for it, but the lineups for it were huge, and I wasn’t overly interested in trying out what they were showing)
Dishonored (may regret this decision later, as it’s building some positive word-of-mouth)

Saw a bunch of celebrities

I went to panels featuring Stan Lee, Levar Burton, Christopher Lloyd, John Barrowman, the cast of Criminal Minds, and Gillian Anderson. Stan Lee, Levar Burton, Christopher Lloyd, and John Barrowman were very entertaining. I was a bit disappointed with Gillian Anderson though. She doesn’t seem like someone that does the ‘con scene very much, and her answers were very dry, and awkward. Also, Kevin Smith was randomly taking pictures with fans right beside us while we were playing Cards Against Humanity.

Bought a bunch of stuff

Nerd shopping was pretty solid for me this year. I bought a bunch of Marvel vs. Capcom Minimates, two Marvel Tokidoki shirts, Cards Against Humanity, the Cards Against Humanity expansion, and a gang of quiet Sanwa buttons. Cards Against Humanity is actually pretty hard to find up north, so being able to get a hold of it at the show was pretty clutch. Also, getting enough quiet Sanwa buttons to install on my two Mad Catz TE fighsticks means I can play fighting games again without infuriating Steff every time.

Overall, the show was pretty good. It’s always great to immerse ourselves in a celebration of all things nerdy. Can’t wait to do this all again next year!

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