Well, That Was Unexpected… (E3)

I haven’t been zealously following the E3 gaming and technology extravaganza this year. I haven’t streamed any developer presentations, I don’t have an opinion on which VR platform is leading the pack, and I’m not particularly concerned about whether Microsoft or Sony ‘won’. Luckily the world decided to keep me informed via a hyperactive Flipboard feed, fellow WordPressers and even facebook, so despite putting in zero effort I’ve ended up with a raft of things to enthuse about.

There’s so much buzz about Virtual and Augmented Reality, and the wave of VR tools that are market ready or approaching production is compelling. I’d love to spend some time with a Rift, Morpheus or any of the other headsets for that matter, but to be honest until Star Citizen is completed and VR-ready I’m more interested in the line-up of new games set to hit the shelves over the next year or so. Here are a handful that really caught my eye…

  • IDW are making an ‘animated’ Transformers game featuring old school Optimus, Bumblebee and co., and it will be available on PS4. Instant win! My inner 10 year old (sometimes mistaken for my outer 30 year old) will definitely be keeping an eye out for Transformers: Devastation.
  • Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 5 looks set to revive the digital skate skills I spent countless hours honing on the original game and it’s sequels (THPS2 was my personal favourite). Apparently it harks back to the first iterations in both gameplay and some retro stage design, with just a few modern tweaks such as the ability to push instead of jumping repeatedly to build speed. It may be overly optimistic of me, but there doesn’t seem to be much that could go wrong here.
  • Despite having no experience with the first three games in the series and harbouring a long-standing distrust of open world games, Fallout 4 sounds pretty special. Exploring, scrounging, crafting, fighting, levelling up… it all sounds pretty familiar. The level of passion displayed by the Fallout community following Sunday’s mega reveal is impressive though, so they must do these RPG staples well. I visited Seattle in inFamous: Second Son earlier this year; perhaps November will involve a trip to Boston.

These are three of many promising new titles, but it was this article that piqued my interest the most and inspired me to put the figurative pen to paper. Introducing… Horizon: Zero Dawn.

As the trailer progressed from cut scene to gameplay footage I was struck by a few key features.

  1. The protagonist is female! *gasp* Fresh indeed.
  2. There are giant robotic dinosaurs. The last dinosaur game I played was Jurassic Park on the SNES, so this looks to be something of a step up in terms of gameplay and graphics.
  3. Based on the footage and comments made by the developers we can expect an open world of expansive natural environments to explore and survive in. There will be townships and at least one more densely populated city as well, but from the clip above I’m envisioning an experience along the majestic lines of Skyrim and Dragon Age: Inquisition. And that’s my kind of sandbox.
  4. Something that sadly isn’t confirmed (and is possibly denied here) is the apparent potential for awesome co-op multiplayer. Teaming up in either split-screen local or online cooperative play to tackle the giant, hi-res descendent’s of Transformers’ Grimlock is immensely appealing. I really hope this is something that, if not currently in the plans, finds its way into the pipeline between now and Horizon: Zero Dawn’s release.

And that’s that. I wasn’t expecting to collate these games in such a formal manner, but there you go. If there are others I should be checking out let me know in the comments and I’ll add them to my ‘I really hope I get time to play all these’ list. Otherwise please be prepared for a lull in activity here on MisspentYouth starting around November and possibly lasting until 2017.


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