Greetings TA’ers of all shapes, sizes, creeds, and controller sizes!
It's that time of year again... The time of year when the rumors are as thick as a Gulf Coast oil spill. The time when every major company is boasting a line-up that will destroy it’s competitors into bankruptcy and Duke Nukem Forever levels of embarrassment. The console nerd rage heats up to heat levels the sun could only wish it could nucleate. It is time for the E3 expo!
To warm-up for the show, we’d like to introduce the first annual staff watch list. The Newshounds (and special guest!) have all submitted their top 5 games they are keeping an eye on for the 2010 expo. This year’s contributions provide a nice spread of opinions and cover some games that do not normally find themselves in the press much. Each Newshound was approached and asked to provide a list of games announced to appear at E3. They picked 5 of those and provided some reasons as to why they are watching them. A few unannounced games have made wishful lists, to keep the rumor mill churning.
This will be a beastly undertaking, and those of you that make it through the entire trip earn themselves a free cookie (to mailed at a later date)!
Let us kick it off with our esteemed zigs00
(a fan favorite and God only knows why)!zigs00 said:
Rock Band 3
I'm an unashamed huge Rock Band fanboy, and a massive fan of every thing that Harmonix have done. Even if it was identical to RB2, I'd still love it. But as a HMX fan, I know that won't be the case at all. They consistently innovate and improve with their games, and the inclusion of harmonies and keyboards in more than enough to get excited about. But they've no doubt got other huge surprises in store, which I'm incredibly psyched to see at E3!
I don't know much about this game, to be completely honest. But the cinematic trailer I saw completely blew me away. To me (and maybe this will sound ignorant, so I apologise if it does!) it seemed like a mix of Crackdown, Mirror's Edge and Team Fortress, which were all games I loved. Brink seems to have a gorgeous design style and set to be a brilliantly fun team-based FPS with massive customisation and kickass free-running mechanics. What's not to love?
As they've shown time and time again, Rockstar knows how to make amazing games. And as they showed everyone with GTA: Vice City, San Andreas and Red Dead Redemption, they definitely know how to make a mind-blowing, convincing world set in a specific period. So with a noir game set in the crime-ridden Los Angeles on the 1940s, Team Bondi and Rockstar have definitely got a potential winner on their hands here. The colour and visual styles look incredibly impressive, the detailing overwhelming intricate and the story sounding amazing, the game is definitely something I'm excited about! Hoping for some proper gameplay footage at E3 with its impending release mere months away.
More Primetime Games
At last year's E3, Microsoft were really pushing this new Primetime Channel, with games like 1 vs. 100 and Joy Ride on the horizon. The latter has still not appeared, but the former was awesome; I really had a lot of fun playing it, and the community-driven aspect was wonderful. I'm hoping that this year, Microsoft announce more upcoming games like that (more freebies, especially, because they're always lovely). Xbox Live is a fantastic service, without doubt, and 1 vs. 100 demonstrated that pretty perfectly in my opinion. Moar please.
Please Valve? PLEEEASE? I don't care whether it's HL3, or Episode 3 or something completely surprising. All I know is that I'm dying to play more Half-Life and continue the saga. I'm sure other fans who have played Episode 2 right to the end are similarly desperate to see what happens next with the story. Please announce something Half-Life-y at E3 Valve, I'm begging.
Some excellent games! I agree with the Primtetime Games, we need more of them. They were addictive and fun. With the recent cancellation of the Portal 2 E3 event, the rumor mill is churning harder than ever for a Freeman appearance, let’s see it happen. Thanks for the list, zigs!
Now to one of the better looking of our staff, http://www.trueachievements.com/ButterflyEdge.htm
(I bet you thought I was going to say Aerodynamo there)!ButterflyEdge said:
Rock Band 3
Can't wait for Rock Band 3. Brand new setlist, and no doubt brand new ideas to go with it - both of which I'm confident Harmonix will do well! Very intrigued as to how large a part keyboard is going to play, and how it's going to be implemented.
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I
Been a massive Sonic fan since the good old Mega Drive days, hence everything but Sonic Rush has been a soul crushing let down since then. Can't wait to see Sonic REALLY go back to his roots.
Gears of War 3
So excited for the big finale. First two were epic in every way, can't even begin to imagine how this one will turn out. Giant yes please to the 4 player co op, too!
Announcement trailer got me curious, got a very Borderlands-y feel going for it, but since that's pretty much all we've seen so far, I'm looking forward to seeing what else comes of that!
Fallout: New Vegas
I'm a huge fan of Fallout 3, and all the extras that New Vegas has like special attacks, 'Hardcore' mode etc have got me even more interested.
Power Gig: Rise of the Six String
I'm a terrible, terrible guitarist on an unimaginable level, but I can see this being something to genuinely get me trying hard and sticking to it, and hopefully actually enabling me to play something other than Come As You Are by Nirvana. With the degree of followers that music games have today, I think this is a fantastic idea. A great way to really open up music games for all gamers, young and old.
Another Rock Band 3
vote! My interest is piqued on how the harmonies and keyboard will play in with this next installment. I am curious about Bulletstorm
, there has to be something there that Epic would go to all the trouble and gobble up the original developing studio to keep the IP all to itself.
brings us some of his can’t miss games (and predictions)!Matt Hull said:
Elder Scrolls V To Be Announced?
Bethesda has said that it has ‘secret plans’ for E3. This has led to various rumours circulating around the gaming World. It seems initial thoughts that it would announce an MMO rather then a sequel to Oblivion have been largely squashed, by various sources including Japanese games magazine Famitsu. Lets also not forget that Oblivion had a four year development cycle from the launch of Morrowind in 2002 to its release in 2006.
Gears Of War 3
It might not take much(a trailer and some images) but I am so excited about this I am already making plans to keep next years release day a Gears only day! Gears 2 has elevated the story to a place were we are hoping, no sorry expecting, a dramatic conclusion full of Locust blood and guts, tears and explosions. I hope at E3 we see some actual game footage and at least hints that the multiplayer issues will be fixed.
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I
You have teased us long enough Sega! We had the Project Needlemouse information drip fed to us, scraps of gameplay footage shown to us and a release date pushed back until the Autumn. At E3 show us some footage of all the zones Sonic will be whizzing around in and give us a definitive release date.
I was, and still am, unable to decide whether I just liked Fable II or if I loved Fable II! The World was colourful and vibrant and felt unlike anything I had played this generation. The story impressed, but was different to what I expected, and played out like a twisted fairy tale. I just hope the actual game play does not leave me wanting more and maybe an expansion upon its gesture interaction system would be a welcome upgrade. Many of the stills that have been released have shown the game World as a darker place, lets hope its colourful greens and reds don’t become washed away by dull browns and greys. Also lets not forget this game is set to use the much publicised Natel…
Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine
Space marines in power armour with huge weapons on a mission to destroy the many alien species that threaten humanity - sound familiar? The World of Warhammer is the Daddy of space to games like Gears Of War and Halo. It has a ready made game World that is as interesting as it is immersive. The game is described as a “third-person, over-the-shoulder action game with RPG elements”, this has the potential to be a fantastic game. This game has been developed for quite a while now and THQ have an opportunity to make this more then just an ‘also released’ and make this a truly memorable game.
Sonic 4 NOW. (Please.)
From the Newspuppy to the veteran Newshound, let us bring splicegraph
in for an expert opinion!splicegraph said:
Gotta get it off my chest before I burst, but Gears of War 3 is probably my most anticipated game in the E3 line-up. I know, I know the franchise may seem tired to some, but I'm thinking that GoW3 will be a whole new ball game. Comon! Rumours of mechsuits!?! Damn.Two World II
Also, involving Epic, I'm pretty stoked for BulletStorm. Although, I think it's going to be basically a beta tester for GoW3 and it may suffer from 'too much stuff' syndrome. Apparently it's stipulated that no matter what new tech Epic comes up with between now and BulletStorms release, devs People Can Fly have to make room for it. Still, it looks like a blast. I love the idea of booting an opponent into bullet time and unloading a relentless combo from various insane weapons on them.
Another biggy for me is Enslaved. The premise is intriguing and the screens look absolutely beautiful. Like another more recent game, this one is also based on an epic piece of classic literature, "Journey to the West". Given that the game story has been adapted and written by Alex Garland (28 days later & Sunshine) I'm hopeful that this will be a game with both content and action.
Other games on my radar are Two Worlds II,, F.3.A.R, and Medal of Honor. When I first played Two Worlds I absolutely hated it, the graphics are plain bad and the voice acting is terrible, but one day out of boredom for everything else I owned and at the recommendation of a friend I picked it up again and found myself totally hooked. The sequel looks like they've fixed all the superficial stuff and built on what they had that was a win. A solid game engine.
The game that I think will be a fail? Fable III. First generation NATAL tech, and a whole lot of undelivered promises as per the norm from Molyneux.
?? That is bold, Splice! Bold! I tip my hat to thee, sir.
Next is an Xbox Live Ambassador and should be an Ambassador to your heart, DavieMarshall
Fallout: New Vegas
How can anyone not want more information on this? Fallout is one of my favourite Xbox 360 games. The atmosphere, the open world, the free roaming, the hours upon hours spent searching abandoned properties and areas. Sometimes a game jumps out from your TV and draws you right in, elevating your experience. Fallout was one of these games.
I just love the Fable universe and the incredibly adventurous Peter Molyneux. Molyneux, despite his critics, strives to deliver much more than just a game, it's an experience in a world that you shape and refine through your own actions. Fable II was little more than an experiment. I feel Lionhead Studios will pull something really great out with Fable III. Plus, and I might be the only one saying this, I want to know more about how they plan to include Natal into their sub-game structure.
I'll no doubt be lambasted for this, but... I'm looking forward to Project Natal. I'm interested by what I've seen so far, and I find it quite exciting this will be on the shelves by Christmas. I won't be a first day buyer, as I don't have the wool pulled over my eyes. I see potential in Natal, but it needs to be tapped by the developers, and the technology proven first. I want to know if the kinks have been ironed out and how discernible the input lag is.
Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier
I've always loved the approach of Tom Clancy games to the 'theatre of conflict' with it's over the shoulder perspective. Whilst Modern Warfare is good, Clancy's war titles really shine and stand out in terms of a more 'solid' experience for me.
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I
Sonic is something of an institution. Though one which has regrettably succumbed to the gaming world of the third dimension. Even after the slew of 'next gen' titles, if you say to a friend, "Sonic the Hedgehog" instantly you'll find yourself reminiscing about the 'good ol' days' in 2D, as if Sonic died with the demise of the SEGA console system. This stripped back approach could reignite the flame of Sonic's youth in glorious HD.
I have to admit, I have never played a Tom Clancy’s Ghost
game, but that description does pique my interest in what they present. I have read some of his books and I find those fantastic tales. I suppose with the popularity of the video game series that must translate well.
Next, he may have Rush from Mega Man as his gamericon and we still let him on the staff, Dog of Thunder
!Dog Of Thunder said:
Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine
I love 40k and just recently invested in a new Ork army, so any 40k game coming to the 360 is going to get my full and undivided attention. Firewarrior for the PS2 was a good attempt but Space Marine should blow that one away in a hailstorm of bolter fire.
Anytime I hear of a shooter rewarding points for kills, I get excited. I loved The Club but Bulletstorm just looks like a bloody, mindless good time.
I want to see some actual, game footage of this thing in action. I played Splatterhouse 2 and 3 on the Genesis as a wee lad and was initially excited to hear that the franchise was back from the dead. So far, I'm unimpressed by the concept artwork and the way the developer is talking about the game. I want to be proven wrong.
Monday Night Combat
Yeah this one debuted at PAX East, but as a huge fan of Defense of the Ancients/League of Legends I can not wait for a similar game to hit the arcade. Show me more!!
I've seen a lot of footage of this game already, but really, I just had to list it. The concept is so unique and so bizarre that I can't help but already be in love with this one.
Doesn’t Modern Warfar 2 and Bad Company 2
operate on a similar concept that Bulletstorm
will? Rewarding the players for kills? If so then they are more than welcome on my shelf.
I was told if I did not post the following list as an “expert, innovative, or insightful experience that no gamer should pass up” that I was going to get fired. So here is your expert, innovative, AND insightful (promotion time!) list provided by none other than the Newshound Manager, Aerodynamo
Has your mind been blown (that’s what she said) with that analysis?! My Excite-O-Meter
just hit 11!
To bring us back to reality, with a gavel in one hand and a bottle of milk in the other, is our wonderful Moderator Manager and Administrator: Clever Jake
!Clever Jake said:
Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge
They did a great job bringing the first back to life, which was a great game filled with laughs and challenges, plus it made me feel young again MI2 is in my opinion the best of the series and I'm looking for more of the same, only 6 floppy disks longer!
Sid Meier's Civilization V
I love Sid Meier games and whilst Civilization Revolution was good it's nothing like the real thing. Let's hope I don't need to upgrade my PC to play it.
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II
Loved the first, dissapointed that Starkiller is back, but it'll probably only take a few wookies to get over that dissapointment.
Gears of War 3
Never enjoyed the multiplayer, but I want to win the war against the Locust once and for all, I don't expect a whole lot of improvement from the previous games and inevitably there will be online achievements.
I was suckered into buying Fable and Fable II and I thought both were dissapointing, however, Peter Molyneux has told me the third instalment is going to be great and he wouldn't lie a third time...
We need to get that man a babysitter and let him game. Without him the gaming world grows a little bit dimmer!Saint Devourer
chimes in his with list!Saint Devourer said:
Brink has been a game that I’ve been interested in since it was announced, mostly by it’s vow to “blend singleplayer, co-op, and multiplayer into one fluent gametype”. Since then, Splash Damage hasn’t let up on the media storm, showing trailers detailing the gameplay, customization, and even one of the intro cinematics. Plus, I love any game where I have a persistent character that evolves as I play and carries through to other gametypes. Aside from it all, the game looks damn beautiful.
Fallout: New Vegas
I was an avid fan of Fallout 2 before Fallout 3 was released. I was cautious when I had heard that Bethesda had acquired the rights to Fallout, but I knew it was in good hands. Bethesda did not cease to amaze me, with a game that was rich in storytelling and replay value, as well as doing the V.A.T.S. system justice. Now that it is in the hands of Obsidian, with some of Black Isle (the people behind the first two Fallout games) leading, I know it’ll be the ultimate Fallout game to date.
Fable has always been a series that I have looked into. I’ve always found the idea of the world shaping to you and your ideas and actions fascinating. However, the first Fable didn’t have enough consequences for your actions, as the game went on pretty much as normal, regardless of how good or evil you were. Fable 2 added more of an impact to your actions, but I still didn’t feel like I could shape the world, for better or worse. Fable 3, however, you are a king. If this is done correctly, this should give the player enough of an impact to shape the world as he or she sees fit. Plus, it sees to do some interesting things with some of it’s features, like being able to make a baby with your friend over Live. Whether or not it will be a good or a bad thing, remains to be seen, but I remain hopeful, and I have no doubt that Lionhead will deliver a solid roleplaying experience regardless of how it’s accessory features work.
I’m not expecting Naughty Bear to be groundbreaking by any means. It looks to be a simple platformer with an awesome premise: a teddy bear seeking revenge on his fellow beary brethren. That’s something I feel has been tossed aside for this generation of gaming: simplicity. Not every game needs to innovate, some games need to be simple and fun, without requiring a complex control scheme or in depth character development. That’s what I’m hoping for Naughty Bear to be: simple, polished, and fun.
Microsoft’s infamous flagship to compete with Nintendo’s Wii and Playstation’s Move, Project Natal has big shoes to fill. Obviously, I am skeptical of any motion based peripherals, especially when they claim that lighting and room size will not matter. However, from what I have seen of Natal, especially Milo, Lionhead’s entry into Natal software, it seems to be very powerful. If Natal is done correctly, and works as it should, the Wii and Move will have to tuck their tail between their leg, as Microsoft’s Natal will be reigned king of the motion controller market. So long, of course, the price is right.
We will now conclude with my very own list of games I am keeping an eye on for E3. I was going to start my list off with Ghostbusters
but I heard the game all ready came out and it was great
. So good that Atari should consider adding some DLC and a new patch for it, but I digress. I will start out with…Fable III
I had never played the original Fable
. I just remember watching my roommates playing it in the ‘ol college days and figured they were having a good time. I really enjoyed Fable II
. My feelings on the second installment mirror Matt Hull’s. I would like to add that what I really liked about it was the true Overworld feel to it (think Ocarina of Time
) with some excellent time transition (continue to think Ocarina of Time
). I always feel that when developers us the progression of time (forward and backwards) as a mechanic to move the game’s story forward, it leads to beautiful results. I wish the Hero had more choices of weapons and gadgets, but I really liked the quality of Fable II
. That is why I will keep an eye on the next game. I want it to be better
After watching the developer diaries and the trailer, this game has rocketed to the number one spot on my MUST HAVE NOW
list. I loved Mirror’s Edge
freerunner style of gameplay and it looks like Brink will take it to the next level. It also has a feel of Bioshock’s
Rapture, only more populated. Let me explain, one of the charms to Bioshock
was you felt isolated from the world, but it also felt empty at times. Devoid of a large population. I believe Brink
will amplify that feeling and also balance it with more population. For some reason this game also brings visions of The Warriors
flick. Sonic 4
See Above. Others have said what I am thinking much better. It is a shame we can’t get Michael Jackson to work on the soundtrack of this one.Elder Scrolls 5 Announced Morrowind
was amazing. Oblivion
took that previous title’s foundation and make it even better. I believe the next Elder Scrolls
game will simply be an orgasmic experience. Every free-roaming RPG I play now I compare to Oblivion
(and very rarely to they hold up well). How it handles quests, exploration, story lines, factions, weapons, armor, classes, it is just mind boggling! Castlevania: Lords of Shadow
The only Castlevania
game I have played is Castlevania: The Adventure
for the Game Boy. That is my Casltevania exposure. When people discuss great games, and this series comes up, I feel like I missed out on a part of history. I have attempted to play the games in ROM form, but I just feel like I missed some of the magic from times long past. With the series being rebooted with this title, I am beginning to get excited about the idea of getting into Castlevania
. That is why it is on my watch list.
So concludes the Newshounds’ list of games to watch. We have provided you, the community, with widespread opinions and reasoning on what to watch for this E3. Why not provide some of your own lists as to what to watch for? Any bold predictions? Let us also not forget that it is a great time to be a gamer.