E3 2013: Day 3 Highlights from the Show Floor
We’re now done with the third day of E3, and it was another one full of previewing the latest and greatest video games. Much like we did with day two, we’re going to point out the highlight titles we saw today. So let’s get to it…
I don’t think it is hyperbole to say Respawn Entertainment’s Titanfall is the mech game I’ve always wanted to play. I got a chance to sit in on a massive, live demo of Titanfall’s multiplayer and it was eye candy from start to finish.
If you haven’t seen anything about Titanfall thus far, I suggest you watch the video above to get yourself acquainted before we continue.
So, Titanfall plays like the frantic, fast-paced shooter combat of the Call of Duty series but with mechs piled on top. You would think there wouldn’t be much variety in combat with only soldiers and mechs on the battlefield, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. There are pros and cons to both the “pilots” and mechs, making it so there is no clear advantage to using either.
For instance, pilots can basically use a jet pack and free run, which comes in handy due to how vertical the maps are. The quickness of the pilots lets them get the jump on enemies in mechs. And when you combine that with strength in numbers, pilots are a force to be reckoned with.
On the flipside of the coin, the mechs are powerhouses. Titanfall’s mechs are the fastest, most agile mechs I’ve ever seen in a video game (think those mech things from the movie Avatar). These things may be huge, but they do not lumber around. The transition between mech and running and gun on foot is also seamless, ensuring the action never lets up.
There were high expectations placed on Respawn Entertainment after the company’s founders jumped ship from Activision and the Call of Duty franchise to pursue something new. Now that I’ve seen what that new something is, I’m beyond excited to get my hands on it. Titanfall looks like a spectacular multiplayer-focused shooter.
Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare
The Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare demo I checked out was simply an extended edition of the one that was shown at the EA press conference. I got ot see the Disco Zombie boss (still hilarious) and get a better look at all the various powers of all the Plant classes. I think my personal favorite at this point is the sunflower, simply because his reloading animation is so damn adorable. Although, the Cactus’ “corn strike” – an orbital strike of sorts that explodes into a cloud of popcorn – comes in a very close second.
The concept of Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare didn’t sound too appealing to me to begin with, as I pointed out in my E3 Day 1 Wrap-Up post, but I’ve completely come around on the title since the EA presser and seeing the game in a live demo at EA’s booth. The PvZ-style humor is definitely front and center and, honestly, the main draw of the game. And any third-person shooter that puts comedy first, I’m okay with.
Seeing developer PopCap branch out into the “core” gaming scene is strange, but they are making the right decisions about how to do it that best fits the studio’s image. Sign me up.
I’m not entirely sure the Thief reboot is for me. But for those who love to play stealth games, Thief might be just the ticket.
Firstly, the game is beautiful. The lighting effects and the animations of “protagonist” Garrett are great. Additionally, all the tools Garrett has at his disposable, like the return of the water arrow and the new rope arrow that lets him reach higher ground, are fantastic.
But the demo wasn’t all just sneaking around. The last half featuring an escape from a mansion after stealing a rare jewel from the vault seemed more inspired by Uncharted than past Thief games. Garrett was fleeing across a burning and crumbling bridge. The graphical effects here were outstanding as Garrett leapt and climbed his way to safety. The camera even pulls back to third-person view during longer platforming segments, which makes the comparisons to Naughty Dog’s Uncharted series as clear as day.
If you’re a big fan of stealth games (with a splash of action platforming), then Thief will probably be right down your alley. Frankly, it’s just nice to see this series return after being away for so long.
The Destiny demo I checked out on the show floor was the exact same one shown during Sony’s PS4 press conference a few days back, but that doesn’t mean I wasn’t impressed all over again. Much like with Titanfall, I was not really looking forward to Bungie putting most of their eggs in the multiplayer basket with Destiny. But you know what… the game works. The ease of joining up with friends to “forge your own adventures” makes Destiny an enticing package, to say the least.
It also doesn’t hurt that the game looks gorgeous. Bungie has always been masters of art direction with their titles (why do you think Master Chief is so iconic?), so to see Destiny follow in line with the company’s past works is a great relief.
Destiny has massive shoes to fill, but all signs point to Bungie’s next game being another runaway success for the company. My only complaint is that I didn’t get to see more of the game on the E3 show floor. Daddy needs it!
Watch the trailer for Mirror's Edge below:
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