E3 2013 – My Highlights

Well, the annual mega event E3 is now over and I’ve had a few days to mull things over, I’ve come up with a list of titles that really impressed me. Obviously, I could have made this list pretty big but I’ve narrowed it down to just seven. I’m not crowning a specific “Game of the Show” winner here but I did want to highlight some of the standouts for me.

Agree, disagree, like something else entirely? Let me know in the comments.

Destiny
Fans of Bungie and shooters alike have been dying to peek behind the curtain to see what they’ve been cooking up post-Halo. From the various teases, concept art, and leaks, we’ve never gotten a great look at the title in terms of gameplay. E3 finally changed that and what they had to show, really shocked me. Trying to sell the game as a cross between Borderlands and Halo would be a disservice and too simplistic. The game is vibrant, beautiful, and looks absolutely huge. If that wasn’t exciting enough, Bungie has added in RPG elements so you’ll now be able to select a class, gain experience, find loot and customize your character with new items and skills.  Finally, the thing that really stood out was the zero load times and seamless integration between single and multiplayer. The hype meter for this one went way up after E3.

Tom Clancy’s The Division
Ubisoft’s “One More Thing” moment during the end of their presser and they once again floored the crowd as they did last year with Watch_Dogs. Originally I thought this was going to be the oft delayed “Rainbow 6” title but as it turns out, it’s a completely new IP from Ubisoft Massive. The best way to describe this game is an open world online RPG, only instead of fantasy or sci-fi, The Division is grounded in reality and is a third person shooter. Centered in New York City after a medical pandemic has taken root, players will be playing the response unit created for a situation that NYC currently finds itself in. What I’m excited about is being able to explore the actual city and Massive promises that the decisions you make in the game will affect the gameplay and world you’re in. Based around a real life high level exercise called “Dark Winter”, The Division presents gamers with a “what-if” scenario with what would happen if America is brought to it’s knees by a viral pandemic.  Supporting solo and co-op play, The Division will also blur the single/multiplayer line by having Dark Zones which may find players crossing paths with one another. The potential here is nearly unlimited. Can’t wait for this one.

Division_UIMap

inFAMOUS Second Son
I’m sure most of you who have been coming here for a while could have predicted this as I’m a fan of the franchise already. Featuring a new protagonist (Delsin Rowe) and a new location (Seattle), Second Son just looks crystal clear and fantastic. Delsin seems to have smoke/fire based powers by Sucker Punch has already stated that he’ll be able to acquire powers from other conduits. So I’m thinking a sort of Rogue from X-Men sort of power through absorbing abilities. The story continues 7 years after the events of inFAMOUS 2 and with a real world city to now run and jump around in, I’m very much looking forward to diving back into this addictive universe. Just…cool it a bit with those blast shards this time, will ya? My gaming OCD can’t take it.

The Crew
I won’t lie, I’m an impatient person so typical racing sims like Forza or Gran Turismo, no matter how gorgeous the games look, just don’t do it for me. More frantic and kinetic games like Burnout scratch that itch so any racer that presents a more arcadey feel has my attention. Needless to say, The Crew did just that. Like most games that were shown off for next generation systems, The Crew is another game that looks to break down the barrier between traditional single player and multiplayer modes. Featuring the entire map of the USA to drive through, the game is a persistant open world racer around the idea of taking down criminal groups. What’s impressive is that the game will have no loading screens or pauses and players can race with each other at any time. I like what I’m seeing so far from this one.

Transistor
Bastion was one of those games that just completely snuck up on me when it released a few years ago during the Xbox Live Summer of Arcade promotion. I loved every aspect of that game from the watercolor like art style, to the fantastic combat and the unforgettable music. I guess you could say, I had become a big fan of Supergiant Games and was looking forward to their next title Transistor. Even though the game and myself were in the same proximity last March at PAX East, the super long lines prevented me from really checking it out. I finally got a good look at the game at E3 and I was very impressed. With it’s distinct look, wonderful music, and interesting combat mechanics, I can’t wait to dive into this one.

titanfall_screen

Titanfall
Finally, we got a chance to see what Respawn Entertainment has been working on all these years after the great Infinity Ward split. For me, it did not disappoint. Blending traditional campaign elements such as story and AI into a competitive multiplayer aspect is no easy task, but from what I saw, it seems to work really well. Being a traditional 7v7 match, the game also adds campaign elements such as story and AI bots into the mix. Not only that, players can call in Titans (a mech suit) to assist in battle. Pilots (players without mechs) are much more mobile and agile being able to double jump with the help of a backpack and wall run so the gameplay appears balanced well enough. The levels appear huge and at the same time, interesting for both mech and pilot players. I’m intrigued by this campaign multiplayer approach and once again, Respawn seems to have tapped into a very rich experience.

Metal Gear Solid V
I’m not a Metal Gear player so as I’ve said before, I’m not attached to the franchise in any way. Between the reveal trailer and now the extended trailer that was shown at the Microsoft press conference, this one has my attention. Between the stunning graphics and the (what looks to be) more action like stealth mechanics, I’m looking forward to seeing and hearing more about this one. Now if someone could only make that new Red Dead game which teased us all at the beginning of the trailer…wink wink Rockstar…

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