E3 Presser Round-up

For the past several years, during E3 my finger has been on the pulse of what’s going down with the press conferences as they happen. Whether it be live blogging with former colleague Harriet Jones (not the now dead Prime Minister in Doctor Who) for GamerRAGE, live tweeting or just wrapping up each of them one by one with blogs and the like, this year I’ve stepped back from the brink and took my time to watch each of the press conferences after they’ve happened. It’s not something I’m used to with E3, but a necessary step for this year (and one I’m thankful for taking).

The following are my pros and cons of each of the press conferences.

X-Box One


Before I even begin, let me take this opportunity to say that I find Don Mattrick one of the least likeable people in gaming today and have done for years. He has a face I’d just love to kick in and his recent comments about people who want the Xbox One to have offline functionality (“We have an offline device. It’s called the 360.”) was infuriating to someone who wanted to buy a XBone but can’t because I flat out refuse to have Kinect shoved down my throat, or travel sporadically enough to places where I’m required to pay for Wifi to not want to get one. Whatever, Don. Go suck a dick.

Pros

  • Hideo Kojima speaking English. Not even kidding. I always smile when Hideo speaks English, because it’s pretty cool. I smiled when he spoke at the Sony conference a year or two ago (Although, that was a longer speech.)
  • Metal Gear Solid V – Despite my apprehension of having Kiefer Sutherland jump into what is always known as David Hayter’s role, the gameplay footage looks really cool. Plus, it has a horse. Games need more horses.
  • Live members to get 2 free games a month, starting with Assassin’s Creed 2 and Halo 3. Totally not a cheesy attempt to match PS+ then. It’s a good thing, but cheesy as hell.
  • Forza 5 – Forza has been ahead of Gran Turismo for a while now, and they’re expanding things so the game servers learn to drive like a human, rather than have a pre-determined AI routine. It also improves on the Driver Avatar system from Forza 1 so the game learns how you’d tackle courses, and react accordingly so you don’t have to drive anymore (It’ll also drive when you’re not playing the game, apparently. Cool.)
  • Quantum Break – Very interesting premise. An exploding office frozen in time, while agents who are freely move around to save a woman from death, with only a limited amount of time before the explosion engulfs the office.
  • Dead Rising 3 – A more serious approach to the genre from what used to be a cartoon-like game where everything was bright and vivid, to a grim zombie infested landscape. Also, SmartGlass integration to call for air support is a cool feature.

Cons

  • The new “slimmer” 360. Why? Oh it’s because its design is similar to the new Xbox One. Did we really need a new console for the one that’s on it’s last legs life cycle wise? Cash grab! (Oh and it’s available now. Just like the now old “slim” 360)
  • Hundreds of games coming to the 360, but only a couple were shown. The conference was mostly about the new console, which is understandable, but really grating to those who wanted to see some new 360 stuff to go along with the new hardware.
  • Don Mattrick.
  • Minecraft: XBox One – Are you gonna seriously tell me that the 360 isn’t powerful enough to run Minecraft on the same level as the PC version? Doesn’t make sense to me. Don’t get me wrong, I love Minecraft (I have it on PC & 360) but another version? Doesn’t sit right to me.
  • PVR software. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s very cool and all, but my problem is that it sucks the personality and creativity from creating gaming footage to upload to Youtube. I don’t want your preset themes and effects. Half the fun is creating and editing the videos yourself learning how to use certain software to make your videos your own.
  • This smug looking prick.

Ubisoft


Ol’ Ubisoft came out all guns blazing last year with their home run out of left field with Watch_Dogs, a year later and we’re looking to them once again to steal the show, not only with new Watch_Dogs information, but their other games too.

Pros

  • Opening with Jerry Cantrell busting out a little “Man In The Box”? You’ve piqued my interest Ubisoft. This lead into the next iteration of Rocksmith. This is a must buy for me. Not only because I like Man In The Box. I wanna learn a guitar dammit!
  • Aisha Tate. ‘Nuff said… Okay, I’ll elaborate. She brings a charismatic presence to the stage for me, even if the crowd are as dead as a parrot sold by John Cleese. Nothing could be worse than “Mr. Caffeine” though.
  • The Crew – This appears to be like Grand Theft Auto, if your ass was superglued to your car seat (And you couldn’t run over pedestrians), where you can team up with your buddies to take on rival car clubs and to perform daring heists, car chases, etc. Looks really good and apparently will feature America. All of it. All of America. Yep.
  • Assassin’s Creed 4 – Looks as good as ever, and more Assassin hijinks can never be a bad thing.
  • Trials Fusion – GOD DAMMIT. WE WERE FREE… AGAIN… =(
  • Tom Clancy’s The Division – Ubisoft hit another left field home run, this time with a open world online third person shooter with RPG elements, based in a disease stricken Manhattan just a few weeks after Black Friday. This looks REALLY good. Add in mobile support and we’re rolling!

Cons

  • Apparent lack of actual gameplay footage of South Park: The Stick of Truth.
  • No Watch_Dogs footage. Grrr…
  • Just Dance 2014 – No.
  • Assassin’s Creed 4 – Yeah, I listed this one twice. My issue is that I don’t want to be forced to do ship mission in the final game. It’s obvious I will, though because of the whole pirate theme. Fuck. =(
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On the wrong end of 20, living in London. Avid gamer, wrestling fan and movie buff.