Girl Gamers on E3 2014 – Microsoft, EA, Ubisoft, and Sony Press Conference Coverage!

Four of our writers have the scoop on each of today’s press conferences! Check it out.

Microsoft

[All coverage of Microsoft by Alyssa.]

After last year’s controversial E3 showing by Microsoft, the entire press conference was dedicated to games this year. They didn’t disappoint. A lot of heavy-hitting games were announced/revealed at this year’s show.

Call of Duty: Advance Warfare kicked off the show, and showed that destruction has never looked so beautiful. This title could be the shot in the arm the COD series needs.

Forza Horizon 2 will be arriving in September for all you racing fans out there.

Evolve, the new IP from the creators of Left 4 Dead, looks fantastically fun, allowing you to play as one of four classes OR the monster.

The newest entry in the series, Assassin’s Creed Unity, will be set in Paris and will allow you to create your own brotherhood of assassins with up to three other players.

Dragon Age: Inquisition is one hell of a great looking title. Featuring gorgeous graphics, beloved characters from the franchise, and awesome combat, this is definitely a game to keep an eye on. [Editor’s Note – We noticed, and are disappointed, that EA has again chosen to have the male protagonist option be the “spokesperson” for the game.]

Insomniac Games’s first Xbox exclusive game, Sunset Overdrive, is a beautifully colorful, crazily insane third-person shooter in the best way possible.

Harmonix Games announced two new games, Fantasia: Music Evolved and Dance Central Spotlight.
Fable Legends looks set to bring the cheeky humor of the past Fable games to this title, but adds awesome new spells and weapons to the mix, and allows four player co-op.
Ori and the Blind Forest looks like a very charming platformer/RPG that’s sure to make us weep into our tissues.
Probably the biggest announcement at the show was the Halo Master Chief Collection, which will contain Halo: Combat Evolved AnniversaryHalo 2: AnniversaryHalo 3, and Halo 4. This collection will also pack in Halo Nightfall, a digital series, and a Halo 5: Guardians beta.
Upcoming 2015 Releases
There were several impressive games announced for release in 2015, including:
Inside, a spiritual successor to Limbo.
Rise of the Tomb Raider, a sequel to the hit Tomb Raider reboot, which looks totally badass.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, one of the most anticipated games of next year, continues to impress.
The next game by Double Helix is a reboot of Phantom Dust.
The Division brought some major excitement to the conference, increasing the anticipation for the game.
Scalebound is the newest OTT game by PlatinumGames, and it looks to bring plenty of excitement to the gaming industry.
Lastly, there will be a brand spanking new Crackdown title to play on your Xbox One.

EA

[All coverage of EA by Meghan.]

EA’s big press conference at E3 revealed some enticing new games for the next generation along with their typical one-trick, explosions-r-us  ponies. The big three I’m excited for are as follows:

Dragon’s Age: Inquisition – A hell of a lot more put together than DA2, complete with a new, time-quitting tactical camera that allows you to plan each and every move of your party during combat. Every character seems to have an extensive back story in addition to an palpable personality. Plus, the game isn’t completely whitewashed like so many fantasy-scapes; Vivienne the mage looks fierce.

viv_d

Mirror’s Edge 2 – I cannot describe how awesome Faith looks in this. She’s sleek, tattooed, and built not to be fucked with (all in theme with the black, white and red palette, of course). Finally, it appears that we’re going to get more into the background of her character and general badassery. The gameplay is still in the iconic first person parkour, but with more fluid motion and a true myriad of ways to get to one place from another. Choose your path and put your faith in Faith.

faith_mirrors_edge_2.0_cinema_640.0

Star Wars: Battlefront 3 – EA opened its conference with this one, and rightly so. This Star Wars game was rendered from the exact shooting sites and models from the original trilogy. Hoth and Endor are the confirmed sites that will be returned to in Battlefront 3. It’s gorgeous, more likely-than-not rife with fanservice, and is sporting Frostbite Engine 3 for what I hope to be a pretty solid multiplayer shooter.

star-wars-battlefront-3-release-date

EA is pushing shiner versions of its sports series, which include:

  • NHL 15
  • UFC
  • PGA Tour
  • FIFA 15
  • Madden 15

All of them boast more sophisticated physics engines that lend to more player control and more unpredictable gameplay, as far as the pucks and balls are concerned. Madden 15 has redesigned tackles and a brand-spankin’ new defensive interface in order to claim a sports video game that is more true to the actual experience. NHL 15, UFC, and FIFA are angling for “never-before-seen” detail, while PGA Tour hilariously uses its Frostbite Engine to create “golf without limits” (imagine an explosion happening after you’ve made a line drive).

The last three games, in addition to Criterion’s crash-and-smash teaser are two long-awaited, next gen series and a new MOBA.

Dawngate – A MOBA that learns! Well, not actually learns, but builds upon itself so that you can constantly test out new strategies. The narrative is a priority to the developers of this game, which has lead to some interesting character glimpses that included a giant, hulking, lizard monk. Yuuusss!

The Sims 4 – This next installation of The Sims claims to manufacture our favorite pawns with real personalities. Whatever traits you give them actually drive their actions. The example that was given was called Chuck, a hothead who loves literature and thus doesnt get along with his neighbor because she hates poetry, still remains emotionally off the next morning after a confrontation with her. In order to cheer him up, you can throw a party! You can even import your friends’ Sims! But be careful, because apparently Chuck and everyone else can laugh themselves to death.

Battlefield: Hardline – The biggest, loudest, explosion-y-est game that EA had to offer this year. All of the combat tactics and multiplayer shooting that the series has delivered to us so far has been stitched into a Los Angles-esque street war. That’s right…it’s a good ol’ cops vs. criminals shoot ’em up, but with a promised attention to character and narrative. Fun new gadgets are available, like zip lines and grappling hooks, in order to fully integrate the skyscrapers into the gameplay. A beta of Battlefield: Hardline is available on the PS4 for a limited amount of time, first-come first-serve style. If you have a Xbox One, 360, or PS3 you can also cash in on a couple more goodies at the beta site.

Ubisoft

[All coverage of Ubisoft by Caylie.]

The preshow started with Rayman’s Raving Rabbids, adorable! It wasn’t a game announcement or anything, they were just there to tell people to turn off their devices etc, but it was still cute.
They started out with big guns: Far Cry 4. The first five minutes of the game look awesome. You’re in a bus travelling toward the Himalayas with a fake passport and a gun, but your bus gets stopped. Most everyone in the bus is killed, except you and your helper man. Then a crazy person comes and talks to you, describing you like you’re a freaking guest of honor. Not sure where it goes from there, but the graphics are pretty amazing.
Ubisoft then introduced Just Dance 2015. There’s a couple new features, one of which is “Just Dance Now.” It makes it so your smartphone is your controller (all through a free smartphone app). What this means is that instead of being limited to only four players, now any amount of people can play at once. That’s pretty cool, but if you’re playing in your house, you’ll probably have to move all of your furniture around to accommodate everyone dancing! The movements that it picks up seem to have been refined, so I wonder if it’ll more closely score your fine hand motions.
division
The next game they focused on was Tom Clancy’s The Division. In this game, you’re part of “the division,” which is a civilian group that’s trying to take back New York City after a huge pandemic hits. The intro video was baller. I loved the fact that you saw everything happening, without seeing the people involved. It made it really eerie to watch. Not sure what the mechanics of the game are exactly, but the story of the game seemed really cool.
Next up, The Crew. It’s a racing game that involved road trip missions that take up to two hours. It also seems like you can drive pretty much all over the United States and maybe the world as well. Right now there’s seven different countries competing against each other in “Crew Battles.” The playoffs are June 10th, which will be streamed live. The closed beta opens July 23rd, and the game launches November 11th on the PS4, the XBox One, and the PC.
unity
And holy crap, a new Assassin’s Creed is coming out October 28th! Assassin’s Creed Unity is set during the French Revolution. In this one, you can play with three other people. You can also pick up different missions/quests just by roaming around the streets. I wonder if you need more than one person to complete some of the missions, or if the missions will just auto scale depending on how many players are logged in. The graphics look amazing, and the combat and acrobatics look as smooth as butter.
Changing gears, Ubisoft announced that they are partnering with Microsoft to create a fitness game for gamers. As you work out, you’re playing games or completing missions, which they hope will make it less boring for gamers. One of the games they showed was basically DDR, but on a keyboard. I’m assuming it’s the Kinect that was picking up the person’s movements, but whatever it was, it really tracked the player well. The person was playing on a large mat, which makes me wonder if you need to buy the mat in order to play the game…they didn’t talk at all about how the technology works, so I guess we’ll find that out later. No release date on that one, but it’ll be only on the XBox One.
valiant_hearts_logo
Then they showed a really cool looking trailer for a very stylized game. It’s called Valiant Hearts: The Great War. It’s all about four characters and their dog during the first World War. It’s in partnership with a documentary, so there will be actual archival videos and color pictures in the game, which is pretty cool. The art is awesome-looking, and the story looks really gripping. I appreciate that there’s a female character in the game, which they didn’t have to do; they could have easily focused only on soldiers and left out women with the excuse that, “Oh well, it’s the time period. There weren’t women in war!” Instead, they included a nurse character, and I’m excited to learn about her story.
Then they showed us some pre-alpha footage of Rainbow Six Siege. The game looked like a team-based shooter in which you were competing against another team. What they showed was basically capture the flag, but with a hostage. It’s very realistic-looking, and something really cool that I noticed was how you could interact with everything in the game. So if you wanted to get into the room the other team was in, you could literally blast a hole in the wall to create a door. Likewise you could “breach” the floor to drop down into the room below you. Definitely looks pretty cool, but there wasn’t much other info released about it. Here was another instance where they included a girl. The girl was one of the players, and there was no mention of her sex, or any sexist jokes happening. Everyone was just working together. Again, I appreciate that a lot.
Pretty cool stuff! I was very thankful that they included girl gamers in many of their games, and even had Aisha Taylor as a host (it’s her third year hosting, actually!). And oh man, was she excited about the games! When they showed the Rainbow Six footage, she was pretty much almost crying she was so excited. Awesome.

Sony

[All coverage of Sony by Sarah.]

Sony started off strong with a beautiful Destiny trailer, and the point that the game is the embodiment of what they think the PS4 is all about: sharing, awesome graphics, and strong multiplayer. Destiny’s beta will be available starting July 17th on the PS4.

The Order: 1886 was up next, and I’m really looking forward to it. The graphics look awesome and way creepier than I imagined.

I’m very intrigued by the standalone DLC for Second Son. inFAMOUS First Light appears to focus on Fetch and her gorgeous power, which is really exciting. It also appears that you don’t need Second Son 2 to play this DLC…which is confusing.

Little Big Planet 3 OMFG YEESSSSS. Wait I’ll say something coherent in a moment YYYYYYYYYYESSSS. I love the LBP games, and I’m even more excited to learn that we’ll be able to play the player-created levels from Little Big Planet 2 (but with improved graphics).

As you all know if you watched my latest podcast, I have an addiction to Far Cry 3. So I’ve been lapping up all the info on Far Cry 4. This trailer reveals some of the gameplay and the integrated multiplayer aspect, apparently only available on PlayStation. Also, I just watched a takedown from one speeding car into the door and then driver’s seat of another vehicle. I’m so in love. Oh and one more thing: the protagonist appears to be Indian, not a white guy! So that’s exciting. I’m just very excited, okay? I’m gonna go play some more Far Cry 3…

ABZÛ looks gorgeous, oh my. I can’t wait to learn more about it!

My first thought while watching No Man’s Sky was: well, this can’t be gameplay. Then I found out it was developed by an indie team and that it’s an infinite space exploration game? This is like the part of the Mass Effect series that we all used our imaginations for, the exploration of the universe. I don’t know what the actual game will entail (is it just exploration, is there combat, etc?), but color me interested.

The Mortal Kombat X  trailer shows off some new characters and gruesome ways to kill and maim. It also looks like the character rigs are more diverse than the last MK entry, so I’m interested to see what other feedback they took into consideration. And two of the characters they showed were female characters, also yay!

I think one of the most worrying aspects of this conference was the number of times they said “exclusive only to PlayStation.” Betas, DLCs, expansions, and multiplayer that are only available to owners of one console is a growing and extremely annoying trend. I think the announcers were actually surprised at the lack of cheers and clapping when they said it, as if they excpected us to be so happy in our fangirl/boyism.

Besides just the games, plenty of other PlayStation offerings were talked about (along with some lovely little jabs at Microsoft), including Project Morpheus, PlayStation Now, and PlayStation TV. YouTube is also coming to PS4, with the option to upload videos directly from PS4 to YouTube.

PlayStation TV will pair with your PS4, allowing you to play PS4 via remote play on a second TV in your home. It will have video and music streaming services and allow you to use PlayStation Now as well as Vita, PSP, and PS1 classics. Disney Infinity 2 will come out for it as well. So like 1,000 games for $99. Why do I have a PS4 again?

Check back in tomorrow night for another rundown of all the most nerdy but flirty E3 news!

One thought on “Girl Gamers on E3 2014 – Microsoft, EA, Ubisoft, and Sony Press Conference Coverage!

  1. Pingback: E3 2014 Press Conferences: Microsoft, EA (Electronic Arts), Ubisoft, Sony – Good or bad? Jennie Bharaj

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