Missing in action. Conspicuous by their absence. The elephants not in the room. E3 delivered a cornucopia of news about new games, devices and concepts, but there were plenty of no-shows, too. These are the Glaring Omissions of E3 2010.
The Last Guardian (pictured above) was a very notable although not an unexpected absence. Its designer, Fumito Ueda said the game would be getting new announcements at either E3 or Tokyo Games Show. Since it was announced at E3 last year, many were expecting Team Ico to hold its cards until TGS, which appears to be the case.
Another E3 2009 reveal that had no presence in L.A. a year later is the Wii Vitality Sensor: The peripheral that measures your heartbeat—apparently for purposes of exergaming, no one's still really sure—wasn't right for Nintendo's show this year, a spokesperson told Kotaku. Without any games, pricing, release date or even further justification for why it exists, it's hard to see how the Vitality Sensor would fit into a presentation that showcased several bread-and-butter game franchises and the new 3DS. And while we're on that subject...
There was no release date and price for the Nintendo 3DS: Everyone was so busy oohing and aahing (and adjusting our vision) over the new 3D handheld that the two pieces of info that separate concept from product were left unanswered: What's it cost, and when do we get it? Nintendo's presser didn't say anything about either, although later Nintendo of America boss Reggie Fils-Aime said it would be out by the end of March 2011. Still we know plenty about the 3DS, but not these key facts. While we're on this subject—no price for the Kinect yet, though it's due to release Nov. 4. Microsoft seems content to let rumors churn for now.
And what happened to Batman: Arkham Asylum 2? Revealed at last year's Video Game Awards and given a 2011 delivery date, there has been a drip-feed of info since—voice actors outing villains, maybe Robin showing up (but probably not), and little else. "We are not yet discussing details for the sequel," a Warner Bros. rep told us way back in March. Looks like that's the policy for now, too.
Ted Price of Insomniac Games was spied at Electronic Arts' presser and has an upcoming, unnanounced title to be published by them. But this was the first time Insomniac had nothing to show at E3 in ages, and many expected at least some word about Resistance 3, which has been rumored for some time. On that note, Rockstar Games' absence was known beforehand and it's not uncommon for the studio to skip an E3 so its big offerings don't have to share the spotlight. Whatever the reasons, L.A. Noire , Agent and Max Payne 3 still belong on this list.
Nintendo felt that Pikmin 3, still "well underway,", would have been swamped by the 3DS, so it was held out of the company's presser. Other Wii titles held back include the role-playing games Xenoblade and The Last Story. There was also nothing to be heard about WiiWare or DSiWare titles—a service Fils-Aime says the company hasn't done very well up to now, and has plans to fix down the line.
What about Ken Levine's next game? In April, Take-Two Interactive chief Strauss Zelnick told the L.A. Times that Levine, the BioShock creator, was "freed' from that series to work on "an original title.". Though we were told in January we'd be hearing more about that later this year , apparently that means later than E3.
Others of the disappeared: Milo & Kate. A technical showpiece for the then-named Project Natal, apparently it either hasn't gone much further than that, or a game about interacting with virtual kids didn't fit with the offerings in Microsoft's Kinect-heavy news conference. Microsoft says the title is still under development at Lionhead Studios.
We also heard nothing about Resident Evil on the PSP, a game that was oh-by-the-way announced at E3 2009 with very little news since. But, the series will be coming to the Nintendo 3DS, we at least know that. No word out of Final Fantasy Versus XIII was shaky for any E3 news, with Square Enix artist Tetsuya Nomura telling Famitsu back in February that FFXIII Versus showing up in L.A. was "an uncertain situation." It, too, figures to be a TGS introduction.
That's the missing in action for 2010. Wonder what we saw this year that we won't be talking about at this time next year?