Best Social Game: Guitar Hero World Tour
It was no surprise to learn new instruments will be introduced in the next version of Guitar Hero, what with Rock Band having proved so popular. But it was good to discover the peripherals are of an excellent quality, and the game is compatible with RB instruments too. Not to mention the new Studio mode, which should please creative types. But will all that be enough to give Guitar Hero the edge, leaving Rock Band to overdose on bad chang and die spasming in a pool of its own sick?
- Family Trainer - Ellie claims this is good. And she hates most things,
- Rock Band 2 - Better peripherals, better songs, better online functionality.
- SingStar Vol. 3 - The promise of a firmware update to add PS2 disc support is welcome.
- EA Tennis - It'll be very interesting to see how this works with Wii MotionPlus.
Best Novelty Value: Family Trainer
The Wii balance board is all very well, but you can't actually run or jump on it. The result is it can feel like you're not so much exercising as having a nice stretch. Family Trainer Wii works with a dance mat-style peripheral instead, and actively encourages running and jumping. There are plenty of mini-games to play, including river rafting and jumping over logs. It only took one GC demo to convince Ellie of its brilliance, and she wasn't even drunk. [As far as we know. - Ed]
- Babysitting Party - For the name alone.
- MadWorld - Ritual dismemberment in the name of sport. Tick.
- EyePet - Draw things on paper, and the EyeToy will make them come to life. Virtually. Or something.
- FIFA 09 - Ten-on-ten videogame football. Everyone goal-hanging! Brilliantly rubbish!
Best Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Sony presented a strong software line-up at GC this year, not to mention a new iteration of the PSP, a free music download service and plenty more to get PlayStation fans excited. There was a huge buzz around the behind-closed-doors presentation of Heavy Rain, while LittleBigPlanet put smiles on people's faces and Killzone 2's multiplayer action was shown off for the first time. David Reeves almost let the side down by banging on about Goethe and Bob Dylan at the start of the press conference; he came across like a would-be trendy geography teacher trying to impress sixth formers with his knowledge of Pokmon. But there's no doubt about it, Sony's back on track. Microsoft may have gifted it to them by not showing up, but if it's the same story this Christmas then 2009 will be very interesting.
- Capcom - Resident Evil 5, Bionic Commando and Street Fighter IV. Fierce.
- Electronic Arts - With Mirror's Edge, Spore and more original IP on the way, it's not just about sequels any more.
- SEGA - MadWorld and Bayonetta look most intriguing, while a new House of the Dead is welcome.
- Activision Blizzard - Hooray for more Call Of Duty and Guitar Hero. The new Bond game looks alright too.
Best News: Heavy Rain announcement
Microsoft's stealth reveal of a revised Xbox 360 pad might have come close, but in the end the biggest buzz at GC was about Heavy Rain. "It's amazing," said some. "It's awful," said a few. "It's a load of Quick-Time Events strung together by the looks of things but at least the hair is nice," said someone else. "Shame they still can't do lip-synching though."
- New Xbox 360 control pad - Designed for PES and, apparently, Street Fighter IV. The colour is still a subject for debate.
- Alone in the Dark to be fixed - Well done Eden for admitting the game has faults and promising to fix them.
- No PS3 price cut this year - It's good to know there's no point waiting.
Best Quote: Sony's David Reeves
On PlayStation Home. "Everything is absolutely on track. I can look you in the eyes and tell you it's on track." Thanks, Dave. It's about time to be honest, but thanks.
- Acclaim's David Perry on Sony's fortunes: "Sony basically has pretty much no chance of making money on the PS3, because it's lost more money than they made during the entire peak of the PlayStation 2."
- Peter Moore on suing file-sharers: "I'm not a huge fan of trying to punish your consumer."
- Hideo Kojima on tiresome journalists: "Half the questions are like, 'Will MGS4 be coming out on 360 or other formats?', and in the near future I hope they'll ask me about Metal Gear, about us, about our future projects, and will stop caring about the hardware." We then asked him about MGS4 on Xbox 360.
Game Most Likely To Controversially Get 8/10 On Eurogamer: Spore
We don't give high profile games an eight to wind people up on purpose. Honest. And yet we can't seem to stop ourselves - Halo, Gears of War, Metal Gear Solid 4... What next? Despite stiff competition, our judges reckon Will Wright's super-ambitious Spore is the most likely candidate. Eurogamer editor Tom Bramwell, who is reviewing the game, didn't vote in this category, being too busy conquering the world with cutesy Dodos.
- Heavy Rain - Looks pretty, but will it play nice?
- LittleBigPlanet - The LittleBigger they come...
- Resident Evil 5 - We might prefer the shade.
- Guitar Hero: World Tour - There are no more Spinal Tap jokes left to nick.
And if you couldn't get enough of Games Convention, watch out for our coverage of the Tokyo Game Show in October, and anything else we can blag our way into in the meantime.