E3 is literally 24 hours away, it’s pretty much a time where every gamer feels that Christmas has come 6 months early.
To give you a reminder of the different times that each conference is on:
– Xbox Media Briefing: 5:30pm GMT/9:30am PDT
– EA World Primiere: 9pm GMT/1pm PDT
– Ubisoft Press Conference: 11pm GMT/3pm PDT
– Sony Press Conference: 2am GMT/6pm PDT
CVG has a complete record of the conferences and time zones which you can view here.
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
I’m incredibly excited for the next Borderlands game, I managed to get hold of Borderlands 2 last year on Steam and I’ve been gradually working my way through it – suffice to say, any game that can keep me playing for over 50 hours is probably a good indicator that I’m enjoying it.
The gameplay I’ve seen so far has been really promising, the new elements that they’ve thrown in with the guns should be really interesting and on top of that the new character classes look awesome. Wilhelm, Athena, Claptrap and Nisha are fantastic characters from the Borderlands universe, can’t wait to be cutting down hordes of bandits with Athena’s Captain America-esque boomerang shield.
Borderlands is one of those games that’s just fun to play and it’s so easily marketed towards any kind of gamer. You like a large variety of guns and combat? You like a cast of diverse and interesting characters? You like touches of humour and dark comedy? How about hours of four player co-op in an open world environment? Borderlands manages to combine all of these elements deceptively well, it’s a shame that this won’t be releasing on next-gen consoles for those who have already purchased them but it’ll be a nice way to round off my backlog of games on the Xbox 360 before I make the jump to next-gen when 2015 rolls around.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
The Witcher series is one that I’ve been a bit of a late-comer to, I’m still ploughing my way through the second game but I have to say it’s a bloody amazing series. If you like Game of Thrones, you’ll like The Witcher… It even has Charles Dance in it as Emhyr var Emreis, the Emperor of Nilfgaard, and he even looks like a younger Tywin Lannister.
I digress. I love my dark, medieval fantasy stories and The Witcher 3 will definitely scratch that particular itch. CD Projekt RED are some of my favourite developers out there (please show us something more for Cyberpunk 2077!), they do a stellar job of building beautiful, immersive worlds to get lost in and since I don’t have a PC which could even hope to run a game like this I’ll have to settle for the console version.
The finale of The Witcher trilogy is set to focus on the Emperor’s conquest of the Northern Kingdoms while Geralt looks to pursue his quest of stopping the Wild Hunt – an army of spectres who appear during the Winter. As ever, there will be a great emphasis on the choices you make throughout the game which will shape the progression of the narrative, and the world map is allegedly 35 times the size of The Witcher 2’s, complete with a realistic day-night cycle and a ‘living’ economy. It’s an ambitious title to say at the very least, and I can’t wait to learn more about it.
Star Wars: Battlefront
Last year’s E3 showed us a tantalising trailer for the next instalment of the Battlefront games, and it has been a bloody long time coming! The numerous leaks of alpha gameplay from scrapped models of the game had previously left me wondering if this game would ever get made, and I was immensely happy when somebody finally took up this particular mantle. I’ve been waiting for a Battlefront 2 sequel since 2005, it’s crazy to think that almost a decade has passed since then… In that time, I’ve assuredly clogged up an inhuman number of hours on the first two games which I still play to this day.
That said, I’m rather nervous about it. DICE has been under some scrutiny by fans of the Battlefield series over the recent instalments of that particular franchise, and EA has likewise demonstrated in recent years that they’re the biggest bunch of shits in the industry…
I’m cautiously optimistic, but at the same time I know that my inner-child just can’t wait to get back into an AT-AT and relive the battle of Hoth. I hope space combat is back in there as well, it was a great addition to the second game and numerous improvements could be made with the tech available to this generation.
Dragon Age: Inquisition
Y’know, after the complete and utter disaster that took the form of Mass Effect 3, I was ready to just pack it in with Bioware. I was ready to accept that EA had taken one of my favourite developers of all time and completely ruined their creative talent along with the concluding game of one of my favourite game trilogies. To this day, I still hold onto a bit of resentment whenever the words ‘Mass Effect 3’ pop up, and roll my eyes at the prospect of the next game being announced as well.
But the Dragon Age team at Bioware look like they’ve done their very best to make up for the missteps of the last 3 years. Everything I’ve seen so far from Dragon Age: Inquisition has dragged me back, sometimes flailing and screaming, into the Bioware fold and made me fall in love with them all over again. I’ve even gone back to Dragon Age: Origins, Awakening, and the second instalment to get a new ‘canon’ playthrough and all it has done is build up my hype for this game.
There’s a lot that Bioware has got to do in order to fully win me back, but they’re definitely on the right track right now.
Inquisition picks up following the end of the second game where war erupts between the Mages and Templars. The Warden and the Champion are still missing, their fates unknown, and Thedas has been plunged into chaos as a tear in the Veil has brought spirits and demons from the realm of the Fade into the world. As the Inquisitor, the head of the Inquisition, your job is to investigate these tears in the Veil, seal the Breach, and “save the world from itself” (according to Bioware).
I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t compelled to buy the game based on this description, the footage that has been shown of the game so far looks very promising and it really looks like Bioware is learning from their mistakes. For that, I wish them the very best with this game.
Halo 5: Guardians
Yes, we’ll be seeing rather a lot of content from 343 Industries tomorrow, and in the time that follows. We’ve got Spielberg’s TV series, Ridley Scott’s digital feature, new books, the next six issues of Halo: Escalation, and a game that is confirmed to be releasing this year which has resulted in a large number of rumours. How will this ‘journey’ that 343 has teased begin? Halo Wars 2? Phil Spencer seems to think that console RTS games will make a resurgence in this generation and Halo Wars was the game that showed it could be done well. There’s also rumours of Halo 2 Anniversary, since this November will be the tenth anniversary of the game that revolutionised online gaming back in 2004. Then were’s been talk of a Master Chief Collection which will feature full HD ports/remakes of Halo CE, 2, 3 and 4 for the Xbox One…
Or, it could be something else entirely. We don’t know.
What we do know is that Halo 5: Guardians is the next major release and is coming next year. Something will undoubtedly be shown tomorrow, and whatever it is will put my brain into overdrive as I dissect and analyse every individual frame of what we’re given. If you want to see the predictions I’ve already made about the future of the Reclaimer Saga, then here are some articles I’ve already written on the subject:
– The Ark Theory
– Mystery Man
– The Reclaimer Saga, the Ark, and Ragnarok
– Future of the Ur-Didact
– Cortana: Dead or Alive?
As a series I’ve been so deeply invested in for what’s almost 13 years now, I couldn’t be anticipating the next step in the Reclaimer Saga’s story more.