As they should've, the Big 3 delivered. We are now officially well into the next-generation of (console) gaming, and the games are beginning to show it.
We have a very generous handful of new IP's, ambitious projects, and a newfound appreciation for the indie scene. For as much as I love my tried and true franchises like Mario or GTA, innovation is what keeps that momentum going. If it weren't for newcomers like Prey, The Darkness, Gears of War, Rock Band, or Dead Rising, many of my fondest Gen 7 memories simply wouldn't have been and I may have quickly fallen out of love with newer releases.
This Summer (so soon!), we'll start to see next-gen truly come to life (at least for me). That much, E3 has shown me. Thanks for that, guys!
Jack Black's Dead Island 2: Shamblin' Boogaloo
Easily my favorite trailer of E3 so far. It doesn't blow your mind or make you cry, it's just a fucking good time.
I wanted to know where the hell it was all going. This definitely had something to do with zombies, according to a quick pre-face. It's so vibrant and alive (not undead "alive")! But, very quickly, something throws you off. But, what makes this stand out is that it's tone doesn't suddenly change like what so many other trailers may've had happen. Well, it does change, but it tries very hard to fool you that it hasn't.
It could've predictably contrasted a happy beginning with a change into something dark and depressing as the music shifts into something more moody, but it didn't. And it easily could've gone the way of Dead Island's other two reveal trailers where it's just always a bummer.
Instead, it casually follows a random joggin' hunk with a bumpy tune playing up what should be an awful situation. Around him, shit's going down, but it's still so colorful and happy! He doesn't want any of that drama. But, as we saw in the beginning, he's been bitten. This starts to bite him in that tight little arse of his as the song goes into it's post-chorus breakdown, and it's a glorious showing of CG zombification.
The entire thing is damned glorious.
Halo: The Master Chief Collection
I love Halo. Or, at least everything before 4 (still liked it, though). As far as I'm concerned, Master Chief's story ended with 3's non-Legendary ending. It was a perfect sign-off, and put John 117's fate up for discussion. Forever drifting across space in hypersleep, or something a little more exciting?
The less you know, sometimes, the better.
Rather than trickle out remasters of 2 and then 3, Microsoft just decided to hand you the entire original trilogy, with CE Anniversary, Halo 4, that Halo live-action series dealy, AND the Halo 5 beta. With respective multiplayer systems intact.
All wrapped up in a trailer featuring a lovely contextualization, leading up to Halo 5's single player. Brilliantly done, Microsoft. You've gotten me to care about your system(s), once again.
Zelda: Hyrule Warriors
Even though it seemed so obvious, I was worried my favorite Zelda character, Midna, wouldn't make it in. My luck isn't so great, ya know? Every dog I've ever had never lasted me longer than a year, Pokemon aren't real, and too much delicious meat will make you fat.
Lo and behold, the Twilight Princess is totally playable. Now we just need Darunia, Tingle, and the KYEEEEEEEEEEEEH fish.
Oh, Midna-senpai =o3o=
Another announcement I thought I'd never see happen was the eventual remaster of cult-classic adventure title Grim Fandango. And such a Tim Schafer way of revealing it. What a scamp.
Throughout those 10 or so seconds in between the clear implication and the name drop, I was continuously chanting "Grim Fandango?! Grim Fandango?! Grim Fandango?!", and wouldn't ya know it... I was, yet again, responsible for what Sony, Disney and Schafer could never realistically do on their own. Message me for donation info.
You're right, "Sally". Piracy is NOT nice, and is no longer my only option. All responsible gets a theoretical hug from me.
Who gets nostalgia for Crackdown? This guy does.
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay before Saints Row IV, we had gruff superagents with black outlines doing all the vertical scaling and gun pumpin'. We also still had multiple gangs to fight, rocket launcher juggling, and a vehicle that transformed around your current skill level. All with this really super cool narrator with you every step of the way.
That's the guy you hear in that trailer. He also played some guy in Modnation Racers. Super cool. I'm just happy to hear him again, really. Crackdown 3 happening is just a bonus. An awesome bonus, to be fair. Surely, it'll end up interesting me more than 2 did.
Far Cry 4
The MS conference reminded us that Far Cry 4 was going to be a thing.
This new villain... is kind of crazy, just a taaaad passive aggressive, and he may or may not be pretending to be the good guy. He's basically Vaas, but I have a feeling that he won't be quite as memorable. Let's at least hope the story is, generally speaking, less awful than it was in 3, yeah?
Anyway. No more critical observation.
The Sony conference, on the other hand, gave me exactly what I wanted to see from a game in the legacy of Far Cry 3: A gameplay demo. Stealth/action greatness with even more possibilities, a co-op friendly gyrocopter, a new and (seemingly) much more interesting region to explore, and elephants. Elephants that will wreck your shit.
And here's the real bombshell: A co-op buddy can join in on the action without a second copy of the game! I assume there's more to it than simply entering a session via your friends list, but that's still awesome.
It's not a drastic departure, but it doesn't need to be. A refined Far Cry 3 is all that I was asking for.
Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker
I fucking called this about 6 months ago:
I totally had Iwata and Miyamoto co-op at my front door with a bag of 20's and a quick thanks. You're welcome, cocks.
Captain Toad's levels in 3D World were always a very pleasant break from the norm. Starting out simple, and eventually letting my imagination go wild with what they could do given an opportunity to flesh out the idea. And Captain Toad's quite an adorable underdog.
There's even going to be at least one boss fight! I can't wait for this, and my royalties.
Batman: Arkham Knight
For the longest time, I always thought that Spider-Man was my numero uno superhero.
But, ever since the Dark Knight trilogy of movies got me back into Batman and I thought about it for more than a few seconds, I concluded that there was gonna be nobody that could top the caped crusader.
As many will tell you, Batman is awesome because while he may have vast riches, he's still infinitely more relatable than most other superheroes. He's no mutant, he's not a strongman, and his origin story is so modest yet dark, that, given you had the access that he had, you might believe you'd end up the same way.
Coming recently off of Arkham City, I was ecstatic to see something from Rocksteady's latest come E3. Though, I still didn't think whatever they would show would be exciting enough to bring out my o-face and squee's of pure joy.
The Batmobile looks incredibly fun from every facet. From how quick it is to summon, to how painless yet satisfying the driving seems, to how HYPE the tank mode is! Yes yes yes! Don't remind me that it's been pushed back until 2015.
There were many others I was super pumped to see like Uncharted 4, Bloodborne, and Phantom Dust, but there's so little to go on that I'd have to be stretching out this blog even more than I already have.