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TGS 09: Electronic Arts Tokyo Showcase Report

pklepek
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Posted September 23, 2009 - By pklepek


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We were live at Electronic Art's Tokyo Showcase event in Japan earlier today (in Tokyo time), where the publisher kicked off by showing its DS-exclusive ninja game for the DS called Tsumuji (which translates to whirlwind). It's in development at EA Japan. l heard about this game earlier this year but this is the first time EA's shown anything. The gameplay is stylus-based and has you learning to become a ninja. The art is very relaxed, clearly aimed at children. Rex Ishibashi, general manager of EA Japan, briefly discussed Tsumuji before transitioning to FIFA 10.

FIFA 10 Basic Attacking Trailer »


Executive producer Kaz Makita took the stage to discuss the latest edition of the soccer series. Makita said there were more than 375 million games played online in the past year, which has given them plenty of opportunities to study the way gamers are reacting to the series and incorporate updates into the next game. Makita observed that people wanted a practice arena, continuous play and quick free kicks, both of which are in FIFA 10. He acknowledged several frustrations players had with FIFA 09, which he hopes will not be an issue in FIFA 10. The theme of FIFA 10 was "refining fundamentals." It appears Makita really has listened to players, as lists fixes and tweaks one-by-one and with surprising specificity. The game's demo was recently released, which Makita said has already created "great buzz" with users. Have you played it?

Army Of Two: The 40th Day preview

We also got an updated look at Army of Two: The 40th Day's co-op from level design director Benoit Richer from EA Montreal. There's split-screen in Army of Two, which is a welcomed feature, given that it's not very typical these days. The game's morality system develops in real-time while you are playing, ebbing and flowing depending on your decisions. There is literally a plus or minus sign on the screen, depending on your choices (i.e. saving a hostage or taking them out and moving on). The split-screen mode's frame rate was a little rough, but split-screen allows for a level of player cooperation that simply isn't possible when you cannot see the other player's screen. It's a nice trade-off for the lost screen real-estate. The game didn't have the best showing at the presentation, however, with sound effects dropping out, but it is unfinished code.

Dead Space Extraction

As the Army of Two demo wrapped, we were give another look at Dead Space: Extraction executive producer Steve Papoutsis just before it's released on the Wii. Papoutsis expressed disappointment that Dead Space was never released in Japan, but said he feels a little at home in Japan, given the history of survival horror genre over here. Dead Space: Extraction will help introduce the series to Japanese games when it arrives in early October. It releases on September 22 in the United States.

Need for Speed: Nitro Career Mode Trailer »


EA brought out MySims Agents for the Wii next, which I'm sure no one reading this cares about, but for what it's worth, MySims Agents looks solid for a action adventure game aimed at kids. It seems fun to play with a younger sibling. It's also coming to the DS. There was also an updated presentation for Need For Speed Nitro, which EA is hoping will appeal to a much wider audience than the hardcore version, Need For Speed Shift, that was just released on the other platforms.

Left 4 Dead 2 PAX Screens Show Off Dark Carnival Campaign And New Infected

The audience stood up a little more when Valve level designer (and Portal co-creator) Kim Swift came to the stage to talk about Left 4 Dead 2. We've seen plenty of Left 4 Dead 2 since the game was announced at E3. Swift highlighted some of the differences between this and the original game, such as Survival maps being included on the disc, rather than downloadable content, and the sequel having five campaign missions versus the original's four. Unfortunately, the trailer shown was the same one we saw at E3. Nothing new. The only new feature in this build is a playable chainsaw.

Next to the stage was Dante's Inferno executive producer and creative director Jonathan Knight. Camera bulbs started flashing immediately. Whatever you think about Dante's Inferno, people are interested in seeing where EA is taking this loose literary adaptation. Knight claims his team tried to be as faithful as possible to the geography, but admitted they took some liberties to turn it into an action game. That's a slight understatement. At this Tokyo event, Knight introduced the "lust" stage (read: breasts -- giant breasts, in fact!). The "lust" stage features a giant Cleopatra, who apparently commands the..."lust storm"? We'll just have to take Knight's word for right now. The stage features "temptress" creatures, but you don't really want them, I promise. They have giant tentacles coming out of their stomach. Yuck. The demo finished with Cleopatra spawning enemies from her nipple.

I'm not kidding, though I wish I was.

Battlefield: Bad Company 2 GamesCom 2009 CG Trailer »


With that out of the way, Karl-Magnus Troedsson from DICE came out with an updated build of Battlefield: Bad Company 2. Troedsson showed a trailer highlighting the sequel's renewed emphasis on vehicle combat. The console versions of Battlefield have included vehicles in the past, but Bad Company 2 appears to make vehicles a central focus of the action. The destructability in the game is mighty impressive, though. It seems to give Red Faction: Guerrilla a run for its money, but in terms of building decimation, Red Faction may still have the edge. DICE claims Bad Company 2 will be the best online multiplayer first-person-shooter in 2010. Bold words.

And with that, EA's event came to a conclusion with no major announcements in sight. Where's that horror game that Suda 51 and Shinji Mikami are collaborating on.

TGS 09: Electronic Arts Tokyo Showcase Report
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