If you know me at all, you'll no doubt know by now that I'm practically in love with Splatoon. Ever since the game's reveal I've been clamouring for more of it, and this weekend I got just that. Nintendo rolled out three hour-long testing periods for their inky shooter on Saturday, giving anyone the chance to hop into some rapid Turf War matches. They confirmed a lot of what I had hoped for the game to be - but also revealed a few cracks.
I’ve written quite a few words about my time last week with The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, detailing all the large and sometime subtle changes that the concluding sequel is making ahead of release next month. It was a lot to take in over my four hour play session, but it certainly left a extremely positive impression on me – one that couldn’t really be put into words at times.
Walking through the streets of Warsaw, the PR head at CD Project Red explained to me how important The Witcher is to the people of his country. It's a franchise held up as a national treasure - a gift that the president himself gives to visiting dignitaries. To the public, it's a national symbol - a piece of literary and digital art that they can proudly point to and say "this came from home". To say that creating a fitting conclusion to such a renowned franchise is stressful would be a gross understatement.
I’ve always enjoyed the inclusion of the undead in games. Titles like Resident Evil (back in the day) popularised their existence, and since then anything with a rotting corpse attached pretty much grabs some attention. Dead Island grabbed even more with an emotional trailer that had the internet buzzing, but the game itself felt disjointed, and ultimately fell into the pit of mediocrity. I really disliked it, but I can’t really say the same yet about Techland’s latest game, Dying Light.
If I asked you to share the first block sandbox game that comes to mind, I’d willingly bet my first unborn child that you’d say Minecraft. Don’t worry, it’s was the first thing that popped into my head too, at least until recently when I learnt about another platform called Roblox. For lack of a better comparison, it reminds me of Mojang’s open world builder. It’s different though, allowing users to not only create their own worlds, but also entire game experiences for other to play – all in the comfort of a browser window.
I know you all desperately missed me last week Thursday and Friday. All those cabbage comments had to be put on hold while I was MIA. Truth is, I was in the land of hipsters and particularly flat mountains for the launch of the Samsung Galaxy Note 4. I got to play with the device, as well as some of Samsung’s other tech goodies.
Around this time last week I was getting ready to board a plane. I very briefly visited the land of bangers and mash, mushy peas and fish, for a little sneak preview of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. I got a little hands-on time with the multiplayer and a good look at one of the early single-player missions. I walked away a little conflicted.
For fans of the Civilization franchise, and particularly old school fans of Alpha Centauri, Civilization: Beyond Earth is one of the most anticipated strategy games of the year. It's a must play for any fan of Civilization games, but I'm hoping that Firaxis fixes a bunch of things before the game ships next month.
Gamescom is slowly fading into memory, but we have one last bit of reporting for you - the promised hands-on preview for Civilization: Beyond Earth. I savored every second with the game, and it's even better that you can imagine.
I really saw and did a lot at Gamescom. There was tons of gameplay footage and demos of upcoming games, as well as interviews with the people who helped create them. What I lacked was actual hands-on game time. I was quite chuffed on our last day, because my very last appointment was for Dying Light, a game I’ve been excited for since it was announced.
Fans, myself included, were largely underwhelmed with Arkham Origins when it was first released. It’s not that the narrative was lacking – because it wasn’t – but rather that it was perhaps a little too familiar. Within that familiarity though was a problem. While it looked much the same as the last one, it just felt slightly off. Arkham Knight, too, brings with it the air of familiarity…only it feels perfect.
The middling Xbox press conference was succeeded by a play day, and we got the opportunity to go hands on with a few titles. Unfortunately, so did every other Tom, Dick and Harry at the event, which means the queues were all rather long – and with limited time to play before having to dash out to Sony’s press conference, we had to cherry pick what we got too see. I made a beeline for Alien: Isolation.
Hey, did you read my hands on impression of the upcoming Call of Duty Multiplayer? You should! I managed to gnab some gameplay footage, so you can now see just how bad I am at the game.
I will be perfectly honest. The last Call of Duty I dedicated a fair amount of time to was Black Ops, way back in 2010. I hadn’t really paid any attention to the upcoming entry, at least not until I was whisked off to the multiplayer reveal, shortly after landing in Cologne, Germany. Will this be the entry that shakes up the formula?
And for my final bit of E3 coverage, I’m dipping back into Disney Infinity 2.0. You’ve already read my impressions of the game, and if you were bunking class that day, here’s the short version: I liked it. I liked it quite a bit. Now to see some of it in action!