January 13, 2007 - 00:19
Tuesday, we've also woke up early to be in the lobby at 8:30 for another visit to EA. I don't even remember who was in my cab with me this time. We've waited a few minutes outside again and we went straight to the cafeteria. This time there were less Leninades and more burritos and I've eaten the Häagen Dazs ice cream (my twisted breakfast), although I had to finish it on the way to the room with the big discussion table.

The first presentation was from Chris Corry about 'RTS as a Sport'. Chris showed EA's plans for replays for the game and a new hub, however, the presentation was interrupted due to booking issues. EALA Predator forgot to reserve the room for us, so we were kicked to the 4th floor (this time they forgot to ask us to turn off our cameras and the room had some tables with the unit lists, but I'll respect the studio and I won't post them here). What we've seen in this presentation was displayed in an article for PC Gamer a week later. We saw the new commandandconquer.com hub that should go live in this month (January 2007), they told us that there would be a server dedicated for this hub to manage community replays, clans and news. You'll be able to use it to schedule matches with your friends and the game could be launched with few clicks. Matches can be broadcasted for millions of people through the new hub, although they would work with a delay (5 minutes or more), to avoid cheating like map hacking. The broadcast matches can have someone to Shoutcast it and you could follow his camera or follow yours and you'd also have the option to shut up the guy (if TV allowed that in the soccer games, we would be so happy, wouldn't we?). The replays would store the Shoutcast in a very compressed format, although you would be able to override them with your Shoutcast if you wish. Replays from previous versions of the game will run in the newer versions. They will also make a free client with ads for people who don't have the game to watch the broadcasts. Of course, if you want to get rid of the ads, buy the game. I've asked him how long the game would be supported, since, once EA drops its support, a considerable part of the game would be ruined. The thing is... it depends on the success of the game. If C&C 3 becomes another Starcraft, it can be supported for many years. Someone asked if it would support mods... and the EA devs had no answer to the question.

Right after that, it was time to play the game again. This time, the objective was to fight against the AI. The devs gave a quick word about the AIs that I couldn't pay attention to since I've kinda arrived late and I've started playing against the easy AI as I always do when I play any game for the first time. I love playing AI and I have much more fun doing it than playing against another player. So, this was the best gaming moment for me. The easy AI was beaten too easily, so I've quickly progressed to the medium AI, playing with the guerrilla personality. I had to turtle and AI attacked me constantly. It was a very fun experience, but I couldn't finish it since the game crashed. After a certain crash, I had to reboot the computer, but none of the devs knew the correct password, only Predator knew it and he was far away. I had to wait about 15 minutes or more to play the game again. I still played against the overlord personality, but guerrilla is much more fun. The easy AI was beaten by one engineer, but considering that it's under development, do not expect it to be so easy.

Then, we had the interval to eat the famous sandwiches and drink the sodas inside a big bucket completely full of ice. So, you may imagine that if 8 degrees celsius was cold for me, imagine the time I've placed my hand in that bucket to get some coca-cola... I won't get into details here, but for a moment I thought I was in the south pole. Hostile and I talked to Predator to allow us to make a joint interview with more questions. The offer was accepted and we've asked 7 questions for the devs. I was extremely nervous at that time, so you guys will be lucky if you understand what I say at that moment. I also took my time to revisit the EA store and play some games in the EA Gaming Room. Especially, Age Of Empires III, because it is not an EA game #Tongue.

After playing Age Of Empires III, I've noticed that all other attendees disappeared from the 1st place. That's the moment I've noticed that I was lost in EA. I've tried to look for them in the training center, discussion room and in the presentation room, but I couldn't find them there. I've found some random staff and asked him to help me to find the others. I had the opportunity to walk through the whole 4th floor, but nobody knew where they were. We've returned to the 1st floor, but we couldn't find them either. After some random tip, the guy took me to the second floor and I've finally joined the group in the Xbox 360 presentation from Mike Glosecki and Louis Castle, although I didn't recognize Castle when I arrived there. They were showing a Nod mission where you had to eliminate the GDI forces inside a city. Very interesting missions and you constantly listened to GDI troops to call the Nod scum. The controls were quite smooth, but I'm gonna be honest that playing the game on the PC is much better. If I had to bring this game to a console, I would bring it to the Wii because of the WiFi control that could work as a mouse.

Then, we've returned to the training room for more 1 vs 1 game. This time, it was Aliens vs Aliens... or Tripods vs Tripods. I had to play with a random victim since most PCs were taken. He was a german guy that I didn't know. He played much better than Hostile, but we couldn't finish all the games and on both games, nobody managed to invade the other base properly. I was quite offensive in the first game with the aliens and I usually took the initiative to blow some of his base buildings, but he managed to stop me and rebuild his stuff, but he barely attacked me, even with the 75% of the map-controlled by him (I didn't use the surveyor). In the second game, he was Nod and I was GDI and he was clearly better than me. He was about to invade me with a great army, but my defenses were also very strong. After the two games, I came out to take some air. But I've returned later to play another game against the AI. They said there were 15 minutes left, so I've tested the engineer tactic again for the sake of the fun and AI was easily pwned. So, in short, play the medium AI or better. Fun time guaranteed. Easy AI is a waste of time.

Back to the discussion table, we gave our final words about the game. I've personally asked for them to have more models of Tiberium to show its evolution since it's completely irrealistic that all Tiberium would evolve at the same time. My other request was to make sure that the special powers are used as support cards (increasing the recharge time) instead of complete base destruction like what happens with the Generals Powers in Generals/Zero Hour. The game is all about command and conquer, so using these wild cards to destroy the enemy base, you won't command and conquer anything. You'll simply destroy and this is not fun. Some people complained at similar build orders for each side, Hexetic complained at the logo, since he loved the old logo, but everyone loved the game. They gave us a form to rate each part of the event, each staff who participated and to sign the damn nondisclosure agreement (NDA). I gave a 9 for each staff and I've taken a random name that wasn't on the list to rate him 10 for the sake of the fun. I liked them all and I don't like to rate each person specifically. It's better to rate the work of the group. I was the last one to sign the NDA because I've read it and re-read it and re-read it again... Predator kinda got bored of me at that moment.

After that, we were brought to the presentation room. To our surprise, almost all sits were being used by the devs. The room was full and it was finally the time for the presentations. Renardin was the first to present C&C Reborn. He took a long time showing the beta in-game, some movies with the buildings rendered and some pictures. That mod is kicking ass, I just hope it's fun online. The second to present something was JohnWE, who showed why he was 'the biggest C&C fan' in the world. He modified his videos into a special one that made the whole studio laugh for hours. It was really hilarious. His presentation was quite quick. The third presentation was about Mod Toaster 2.5. Ome Vince used a PowerPoint presentation to explain the purpose of the program and the good features on it. The fourth presentation was the PurePwnage one, where they've presented their characters showed several parts of random episodes. The final presentation was from Assassin to show Tiberian Sun Rising. Great looking mod, amazing graphics, but I've noticed a considerable lag when the screen was close to any Tiberium activity. I was supposed to come next, but it was quite late and Predator had to cut me. That kinda left me frustrated, but I guess, shit happens. I was going to talk about Revora and PPM, show trailers from Vietnam: Glory Obscured and Return Of The Dawn, although I'd need to explain several things before and while showing the RotD one. And finally, I'd quickly present some voxel tools (VXLSE III, OS: VV and OS: HVA Builder). My purpose was to show them that the old games were also being modded by a mass of people and that there were good community tools for it.

Once the presentations were over, there was too much blah blah blah, pizza and also, gifts. A GDI and Nod mug for everyone, autographed posters from Joe Kucan and someone else (I've got Tricia Helfer) and an NVidia Geforce 7X00 (X is 8 or 9. I still don't know). Then, we've returned to the hotel. I've talked a lot with Cabal and Webboy. We've visited many websites, we saw a lot of crap being written by community people, although we were surprised by the number of things that were new to us in the event and people already knew about, especially the pre-order movie. We've shared videos recorded during the event since I had a pen-drive and Webboy had a laptop. I also had opportunity to watch Simpsons later and a movie with the almighty uber r0x0r mega God Chuck Norris and there was some alien thing in the screen that made Cabal scream 'SCRIN!!!' at the time he saw it. Every alien thing became Scrin for us. There were a lot of chats about the game and everyone was impressed with it.

I had to wake up early the following day to go to the LAX to return home. The adventure was over. I still met Don Carlo when I was getting a taxi to the airport, but she wanted to go to another place. The taxi driver got confused with the story and in the end, she left the taxi. The flight back home was boring. I've spent some hours in the Houston airport (George Bush, ugh :S). The n00b here was going to get his baggage but noticed that it wasn't there. I was talking to the woman from the continental airlines who calmed me down after informing me that my baggage was automatically being placed on my flight to Sao Paulo. There was nothing good to shop there, although I've bought a Toblerone for me and a lotion for my sister in the duty-free shop there. I also took the opportunity to phone my sister and talk to her a bit. For once, I thought I forgot how to speak Portuguese, but my memory wasn't that bad. The flight to Sao Paulo was more boring (who likes staying 9 hours in the airplane?) and from Sao Paulo back to Rio de Janeiro was fast. My baggage took a long time to appear in the Rio de Janeiro airport, but I managed to get it. I've bought a Palm (Zire 72s), a very useful thing. I think everyone needs to have one of those. It does everything. Then, the dream was over and I was talking with my dad again...

Go to the Next Part -> Part 4: The Secret Movies...