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Nintendo Press Conference

by Steven Thomas - May 9, 2000, 11:48 pm EDT

Long. Very long.

What a day! Forget about whatever else you are (or are not) reading about E3 so far. Today was a day that any one of you would have just been thrilled over, especially if you are like us, who had never been to E3 before.

We arrived about an hour before the Press Briefing was to take place. The Nintendo Press Briefing was held at the Regal Biltmore, a stunningly beautiful hotel, whose only real fault is the fact that they charge over $25 for parking. Ouch. Make a mental note to take a cab next year, or park in one of the $4 all day lots on the corner.

We sneak up to the golden, gilded gates that secure the Gold Room of the hotel, and find Mr. Peter Main conducting some sort of a camera interview inside. We snapped a couple pictures, just because we could.

Inside the Gold Room was 2 very large screens flanking a fair sized center stage, and above that, of course, a very large banner with Nintendo's logo on it. Near the entrance of the room, we see that they have a very nice continental breakfast set up for us. There was coffee, muffins, pastries and orange juice. Then, there were also the most important parts of a complete breakfast. Pokemon cereal, and Pokemon Pop-Tarts.

As it was still early, we went back out into the lobby to see if any cool people would show up. Sure enough, Fran Mirabella 'da THIRD comes strolling in a minute later. Fran is great. I'm happy we finally got a chance to meet him in person. He's very friendly, outgoing, and handled himself like a true pro during the briefing.

We see Mr. Main leave the Gold Room, and take off down the hall. Then, he pulled of the most amazing vanishing trick I think I have ever seen anyone pull off. We were only a couple of steps behind him, when he rounded to corner to the elevators.. and was gone. Vanished without a trace. It was weird.

Joanna Dark comes strutting down the hallway .. You just CAN'T mistake a beauty like that with anyone else. Tight leather pants .. mmm, mmm. Very nice. I think time stood still for a few seconds as she disappeared into the Gold Room.

By now, the crowd outside the entrance to the Gold Room is getting rather thick. Lot's of people. Matt shows up, and we rap with him a bit. Again, a really great guy .. Definitely cool to meet him in person.

The Gold Room was way too small for everyone. It was packed. Breakfast was like trying to negotiate a sardine can, while trying to not spill your coffee.

Lucky for us, we were at the front of the line to get into the part where they were seating everyone. Got second row seats for the briefing, and as it turned out .. we were RIGHT BEHIND RARE for the event. I met Chris Stemper, too.

Mr. Miyamoto was sitting in the front row on the other side of the aisle with Howard Lincoln, and Ken Lobb. Everyone, of course, rushed up to get photographs of Mr. Miyamoto, including us, but stayed at a respectful, professional, camera shooting distance.

Then, the briefing started officially with Peter Main taking the podium. I won't go into detail about what was said, as we have audio and pictures for that, and I am sure that there is a complete video feed somewhere on the net by now. There was, of course, no Dolphin info at all. During the Q&A afterwards, everyone tried .. and everyone failed. Except us. More on that later.

One thing of note during the presentation is the fact that Mr. Arakawa mentioned Metroid completely on his own this year. I think that this fact shows that Nintendo has listened about our wishes for a Nintendo game, and one is definitely in the works. Later in the Q&A, Fran Mirabella da THIRD himself asked the Metroid question, and the response was pretty much, "Well, not this year". Well, if we are lucky, that means that they are working on one, and we will probably see it for Dolphin … perhaps as a launch title.

I had a question for Mr. Main during the Q&A, but didn't quite make it in before he called the session over. Crap. Well, I wont take no for an answer, and just a bit later, we notice that Peter Main and Shigeru Miyamoto were still over at the left side of the room with just a few other people around them. I guess everyone else was being polite by not continuing to ask them questions. Or afraid to. But, we took a different approach. Good old-fashioned persistence. And you know what? It pays off.

I politely introduce myself to Peter Main, and asked him if I could just ask one question, and I said that we would also like to meet Mr. Miyamoto. Peter was totally cool.

PlanetN2000: "Mr. Main, in your 1999 Year In Review speech, you stated that revenues from Dolphin and GBA are forecasted for NOA, for the fiscal year 2000 ... which would mean no later than March 2001, is this still accurate?"

Peter Main: (paraphrasing) "I had to pull some of that back out, with this year doing so well, especially Game Boy Color … perhaps around Easter."

So, there you have it folks. A March 2001 launch is probably out of the question, with a chance for a month or two later.

Then, of course, the highlight of the entire E3 show, we met Mr. Miyamoto, and had a couple of pictures taken. We forgot the permanent marker that we were going to use to have him sign our Zelda cartridges back at the hotel, so unfortunately we didn't get that done. Tomorrow is another day.

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