Following the showing at E3 2012, Assassin’s Creed III takes to the frontier in a video walkthrough of one of the demos shown at the conference last week. Commentated by creative director, Alex Hutchinson, the walkthrough of the frontier demo exemplifies the key pillars of the Assassin’s Creed franchise against the wild frontier setting demonstrating a slice of the massive open world scale of the Assassin’s Creed franchise.
Dishonored is a first person stealth, or action game depending on how you play it. The demo they played live took on a mission that they showed each path play out dramatically different. The game looks wonderful, smooth edges and dark colors with great lighting. Navigating the world is fluid. You can take soft cover and peek and never be seen. Your supernatural abilities let you zip from one place to another with ease. You can possess people and animals all while merging with them so you don’t have to worry about your body being discovered. Guns are in your left hand and your switchblade knife in the right. The knife also helps represent when you are being stealthy or not, stealth when blade is facing behind you and not with the blade forwards.
We got a very lengthy video demo of the highlights of the game. No actual gameplay was played live, first disappointment. They showed that all of Tamriel will be playable. Cyrodiil is a neutral location among factions that are warring, all three of them. All art shown was not final, but capture the look and feel of Elder Scrolls. Except that it lacks the pop in visuals that say, World of Warcraft has. The combat is in real time and features a hotbar and health, mana, and stamina. This being all third person is the second disappointment. PVP is going to be HUGE, offering 150 players (50 vs 50 vs 50) all in one area at one time.
It looks amazing on a technical level but I worry deaths will be too quick to be fun. Dungeons come in two forms, instanced and public. You can find players and gain full XP and loot for helping and being helped, being very generous for all players. Quests are dynamic and of the example they showed, very interesting and even involving time travel to stop a werewolf in the past from terrorizing the future. In the quest if you save certain people or not – new quest lines open up or new opportunities arise. I have no predispositions for MMOs, but ESO did nothing for me. Offering bigger numbers in PVP and using the Elder Scrolls IP is not enough. I hope over time as we see and hear more, it improves.
First up was the Frontier that was shown in part during Ubisoft’s Press Conference. Now being played live before us and going further than what was shown. Connor can hide in shrubs that allows him to stalk man or animal similar to crowd blending, you are unnoticed unless you make yourself out to be. Very cool looking battling in the snow. I get a bit of a Red Dead Redemption vibe as now you have quests and can do them at your leisure.
Next came a new section, Boston. This taking place in the summer as it rains. Connor finds himself helping oppressed people and helping them. Now Connor can take cover and do corner kills. Using a rope dart on one red coat to distract enemies he frees a man from shackles and runs away. In a way of using Assassin’s, you can call for help where your guys are dressed redcoats and fake arrest you and bring you in behind enemy lines so that you can get to the Templar easier. Once killed, he blends in with some workers and then grabs a redcoat and impaled his face on a pitchfork, attracting attention. Connor is able to fend off 5-7 guys at a time but decides to escape via rooftops and is able to use building interiors to break line of sight. Amazing stuff.
Lastly we were shown the Naval combat in video form, but we saw it in full during Sony’s Press Conference, still incredible. Nothing of Desmond or actual story was shown, but all will be revealed in due time. Assassin’s Creed III is going to be a euphoric experience beginning to end with how fluid you can move. Connor will become a new fan favorite soon as he has a lot of weapons at his disposal.
The prettiest game I saw at E3. It also is the most featured and deep first person shooter I played. The map I was on was at night, and all colors popped and looked magnificent. Movement is fast and fluid. Not to be dismissive of the game, but there are ranks, upgrades, and team-based objectives that require teamwork in order to win. Lone wolves will have issues. The thing that sets them apart is the legacy of the namesake and the vehicles which let you fly all over the vast landscape.
This is another SOE title coming to PS3 and PC.
I sat down with a joystick and a headset and dove in with Wargaming.net’s last World Of. It is very similar to World Of Tanks but strategy is handled a lot more differently since you have full movement in all directions rather than being exclusively on the ground.
Don’t get this confused with Bulletstorm, this is a Free-to-Play title from Sony Online Entertainment (SOE). It’s in beta as I was able to snag a couple of codes and seems highly customizable and a lot of fun with fantastic graphics and solid gunplay. Objectives are to hold areas for points as well as getting kills. There’s also a Team Deathmatch mode that is as you’d expect, but looks really good for a free-to-play title.
I didn’t see any options to make in-game purchases, but I plan to try the Beta for myself to go deeper with it in just a few weeks.
I didn’t spend a whole lot of time with the game nor did I play the first game, or many LEGO games for that matter. But cutscenes are funny to watch and all the Batman you can handle plus new DC characters are present. Batman reduces enemies into little LEGO pieces in one hit. In my demo, I fought Harley Quinn who required a specific strategy to defeat – which was more than I had expected. The LEGO formula is there, but a ton of charm that’s irresistable.
5th Cell’s latest game is a third person team shooter with cover based mechanics. There’s a twist though, you don’t have free movement. You pick cover to jump to and can move anytime you want. Since you’re wearing a jet pack to jump cover to cover you can press in the left stick to essentially sprint and get you to cover faster. You can use the left stick as you’re moving to new cover to raise your lower yourself. Raising yourself puts you in danger of dying or a chance to finish off the enemy before you land. You can even choose new cover as you’re moving to the old cover.
Hybrid is an online multiplayer game, there’s no singleplayer here. That’s not to say there’s a lack of story, there’s two warring factions in this post-apocalyptic world, the Variants vs the Paladins. It has the typical controls of left trigger to aim and right to shoot. There’s upgrades, ranks, load outs and a ton of fun here – 5th Cell knows how to make a game. I only saw one mode in my time with the game, where you capture and control points from the enemy. But I’m told there’s up to 10 maps and modes when the game releases. Oh and it’s worth noting we were playing against the Devs and in my demo I had the most kills and won the round.
Hybrid will be part of the Summer of Arcade on XBLA.
Wait, wait come back! Yes it’s a motocross game featuring avatars, but it’s pretty competent. It’s a bit rough around the edges both graphically and gameplay, but it is a follow-up to the classic games. Developed by Bongfish who brought us the Stoked snowboarding games. A coin system as currency is in place to buy upgrades and unlock bikes and gear. Your avatar can be imported as is with all the items you were wearing on the dashboard. It feels solid and I think that the tricks stick and animate long after you’ve let them go, forcing you to crash – which sucks.
RoboModo has made a time machine, making the hybrid of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2 feel brand new again. It’s Tony Hawk at its finest all while updating the game’s graphics, the controls, and overall feel is accomplished with its soundtrack of old favorites and new classics. Classics are all there, Old School II, Hangar, Mall, and more. Loading times are minimal unless you quit out to the main menu. There’s some noticeable aliasing and muddy textures but framerate never dips.
THPSHD is part of the Summer of Arcade coming later this…summer.
I chose to play the Assassin as I held a controller in my hand, but for the PC version of the game and had a Gearbox Dev as my co-op partner. The Assassin, Zero is the equivalent to the Hunter of the first game. It very much is “more Borderlands” but feels tighter and they expanded the trees to have branches that can diversify the characters and make them just as random as the weapons that drop. The skills you select can compliment each other between branches.
Front facing demos of the game were of the Singleplayer Demo released in May. The ones on the back side though, were later in the game at Chapter 13 and things have not gone well with the crew. Sparing the details, this looked very end-game and invokes all of the mechanics in order to survive. Even on Normal, sheer quantities of the enemies will swarm and flank you causing you to reassess your position and keeps you on the move. Ammo is at a premium and requires that you pick up dropped weapons to be successful. You’re separated from the squad and as you regain radio contact with them, you are faced with more challenging enemies all while dealing with the emotional damage that has incurred in your time in Dubai, questioning who you’ve become in this journey. Spec Ops has great gameplay with solid gunplay, and tapping into these characters for their emotional capacity is really interesting.
I definitely want to see the whole thing.
So I got to sit down and play with Wonder Russell (Runic’s Community Manager) and talk with Max Schaefer about the game. The build was the beta version that was available in late May, so nothing new to see but I played a new class and heard musings from Wonder. This time there won’t be an infinite dungeon for the game as there was for Torchlight, in it’s place will be “New Game+” and no limit in using it. Though there is a level cap of 100.
I do have a release date to share with the world on Torchlight II, Wonder stated that it will come out “Orange” – I think she is messing with me.