In this special edition of First Impressions, we review the four big press conferences of Day 1 of E3 2012. We’ll sieve out the most exciting announcements and the biggest disappointments. Note that this is only a first impression of what has been presented during the conference and may not be a fair representation of the actual game that is shown at E3, which we unfortunately do not have the privilege of getting our hands on. We will go through individual games in-depth separately based on more footage and interviews.
You can replay the entire EA press conference here.
SimCity is back and looking even more gorgeous (and cuter) than ever. Build your cities painstakingly and then destroy them with riots, fires, blackouts and one gigantic uninvited guest. You will also be able to connect your city with your friends’ but more details on multiplayer have yet to be revealed.
2. Medal of Honor: Warfighter
It’s looking better than the 2010 reboot, with more actions and explosions in the Somalia level powered by the Frostbite 2 engine. Danger Close also showed snippets of the multiplayer blue-on-blue mode which right now looks like any other deathmatch mode with kill streaks. Still it looks much more exciting than DICE’s flaccid and uninspiring version in the previous game and we’ll be looking forward to hearing more details about it.
3. Need for Speed: Most Wanted
Criterion Games have infused a lot of their experience with Burnout: Paradise into the new iteration of Most Wanted, which undoubtedly is one of the most popular Need for Speed titles. The game aims to capitalise on the social experience with Autolog just like 2010’s Hot Pursuit, with players competing with one another for highest scores. Races and pursuits place a big emphasis on takedowns, and the former is highly reminiscent of Burnout which could work both ways. Open-world driving returns and it seems this has expanded to races as well, in the same vein as Midnight Club where there are no arrow walls to guide you on the right direction. No word on the single-player storyline yet, if any, but if there is one here’s hoping they bring back live-action cutscenes.
Battlefield 3 and Battlefield Premium
When Activision rolled out the Call of Duty: Elite subscription service, DICE laughed it off and said they would never take the subscription route for Battlefield 3. It seems the money is too good to turn down, as EA-DICE announced their own Premium service which would give gamers early access to the upcoming Battlefield 3 DLC. The subscription service took precedence over the DLC showcase itself, and we were only given a short preview of the new features in the trailer.
On the Fence:
1. Dead Space 3
Having established itself as the survival horror game on the market, the decision to focus on co-op gameplay has actually transformed the game into more of an action horror title which looked heavily reminiscent of Gears of War. Would it still be able to retain the essence that made it so good?
2. Crysis 3
Crytek has delivered possibly the most visually-stunning shooter yet again, but underneath the sparkle there was nothing different from Crysis 2 showcased other than the crossbow weapon which can be fired while in invisible mode and can be fitted with different attachments.