Another E3 has come and gone, leaving gamers and journalists equally dizzy with anticipation. We saw dozens upon dozens of titles at the big show but only a few can be called "best of."
We've wracked our brains to bring you the 20 titles we were most excited about in an easy-to-use slideshow. Not sure you agree with us? Make sure to sound off in the comments section below or click on over to see if the title you're most excited about landed in our short runners-up list.
Even though these titles missed our top 20, there's still plenty to look forward to from:… Read more
On the mobile front, Origin's launch is murkier. EA launched no standalone mobile Origin app, instead integrating into only its iPhone version of Scrabble. We spoke with Electronic Arts' General Manager and Senior Vice President Chip Lange, who provided us with some insight into EA's strategy for Origin on mobile devices and consoles, and how Origin is different than similar efforts from other publishers.
Q: What can you tell us about EA's plans for Origin on the various mobile devices?
A: EA has always been a platform-agnostic company with the customer at the center. And when you think about the opportunity of creating a platform-agnostic user ID and gaming network [like Origin], those types of opportunities really don't come into play unless you have a couple of things in place.
One is the content deployed across different platforms. Then you need a back end capable of capturing, containing, and utilizing your data across those different platforms. Being able to connect those PC gameplay experiences to a similar, though not identical, game on a mobile device really opens up a number of creative opportunities for us, whether it be for a game like Scrabble or a game like Battlefield or anywhere in between.
It's easy to say that we're creating a store, and that's Origin's focus on the PC right now. On the mobile side it's different. Apple already has a great store. What we're looking to do is get the social component of mobile side activated more quickly and more easily so customers starting can start enjoying it today.… Read more
E3 2011 is officially over, but with it came lots of new details on hardware and software from the three major players in console video games.
Microsoft showed off a slew of upcoming Kinect-enabled titles, plus Live TV on the Xbox and some exclusive games. YouTube and Bing will also be available via the Xbox, while voice control will enable players to interact with the Xbox and future games in a unique way.
Nintendo perhaps stole the show, revealing the successor to the Nintendo Wii: the Wii U. The gaming giant also revealed a special new controller for its upcoming console that contains a 6.2-inch touch screen and other familiars, somewhat like a tablet. The company also celebrated the 25th anniversary of Zelda in grand fashion.
Sony, meanwhile, stunned many with the news that the quad-core handheld gaming device once known as NGP and now known as PlayStation Vita would have two models that cost less than $300. The Japanese company also surprised everyone with the announcement of a 24-inch PlayStation-branded 3D HDTV with dual passive 3D view, enabling two gamers to see different things on the same TV.
Which console company impressed you the most during E3 2011? Vote in our weekly poll. And please be sure to elaborate in the comments section.… Read more
LOS ANGELES--Look around the halls of E3 2011, and you might notice something strangely similar about many of the most-hyped games on display. There's Battlefield 3, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, Gears of War 3, Uncharted 3, and Mass Effect 3. BioShock Infinite is the third game in that series, and Skyrim is the third modern/console version of an Elder Scrolls game (technically, it's the fifth game in the series, as there were a couple of prior PC games back in the '90s). We've also spotted Saints Row: the Third, Serious Sam 3, and Ninja Gaiden 3, Deus Ex: Human Revolution (the third game in that series), and there are probably a few others I've missed.
This collection of third-timers is partially a coincidence, and partly indicative of the industry's addiction to sequels. With production and advertising budgets at or near what Hollywood movie studios have been spending for years, there's a natural, and very understandable, attraction to finding a successful formula and sticking with it.
A trilogy is also a familiar construct from the larger media world that consumers are comfortable with, and the format is useful for putting together a compelling story arc over the course of three films or novels. But while most movies quit after three outings, there's no doubt you'll be seeing a fourth chapter in many of the game franchises above within a year or two. … Read more
LOS ANGELES--One of our biggest gripes with Microsoft's controller-less motion system was the fact that it required quite of bit of real estate to function properly. A minimum of 6 feet from the camera seemed to be the sweet spot, but even at that distance we've experienced some nags with gameplay.
Small apartment living rooms like the ones we're used to in New York may now be able to accommodate Kinect with Nyko's Zoom for Kinect accessory. Thanks to a series of what we'd describe as an arrangement of wide-angle lenses, the $30 snap-on accessory sits over the standard Kinect array and drops the space prerequisite by 40 percent. That's a bold claim, so we had to try it out for ourselves.… Read more
For a trade show all about the latest and greatest in interactive entertainment, it's somewhat shocking that many of the most popular video games being played right now are either underrepresented, or not represented at all. We are, of course, speaking about the social and casual games that have audiences larger than almost any traditional console game, and what's more, have managed to tap into the recurring revenue stream of microtransactions that seems to elude so many others.
This is no unintentional oversight. Many attendees of E3, the Game Developers Conference, and other industry events say that games such as Farmville and Cityville are not "real games," and that even mentioning them in the same breath as Halo or Gears of War would be to cheapen the entire medium.
At E3, these kinds of games are woefully underrepresented, despite having in many cases tens of millions of players (MAU, or monthly active users, is the standard metric for social games--the most popular game of this genre, Zynga's CityVille, currently has 90 million monthly active users). If you looks around artfully, however, you can still find a few examples. EA's social/casual subsidiary PlayFish, is here, and has scored with games such as Pet Society and Madden NFL Superstars. At E3, a portion of EA's giant floor space was devoted to The Sims Social, a Facebook version of the popular suburban life simulation game. … Read more
LOS ANGELES--At the ShowStoppers expo last night, some E3 presenters got the chance to show off their wares in a more peaceful, intimate environment than the bustling show floor. Reporters were invited to the LA Icon Ultra Lounge after the opening day of the expo wrapped for a gathering of game hardware and peripherals designers offering new products this summer.
About 100 reporters enjoyed food and drink while sampling new gadgets and high-end tech offerings from Alternativa, G5 Entertainment, Gioteck, Jakks Pacific, Mad Catz, Plantronics, Plextor, PNY Technologies, Reverb, Rude Gameware/Cyber Snipa, Samsung Consumer Memory and Storage and Samsung Mobile.
Some of the more popular items on display included the new, mobile-game-friendly Samsung Galaxy Tab and Samsung's 470 SSD internal drive to power more advanced PC gaming systems. Also, the sexy line of Gioteck peripherals offered gamers headsets and control pads with sleek stylings and swappable color and design schemes.
See images of other products from the under-the-radar event in the gallery above.… Read more
Electronic Arts is hoping to convince folks to covet thy neighbor's wife. Or that co-worker you've always lunched with. Or your college sweetheart.
Virtually, of course.
At E3, a show that caters to hardcore gamers who stand in long lines to get the first chance to play soon-to-be-released action titles, such as Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 and Assassins Creed: Revelations, EA's new title in The Sims franchise has gone a bit below the radar. But The Sims Social, which will launch this summer on Facebook in five languages, would seem to have all the prurient … Read more
LOS ANGELES--People who prefer to play Wii Tennis and those drooling over the upcoming Madden 12 have traditionally been treated as two distinct audiences. But at E3 2011, hardware makers and game publishers alike seem to be trying to blend the two groups.
Microsoft spent a lot of its stage time on Monday talking about incorporating its motion control accessory Kinect into not only kid-oriented Disneyland Adventures, but its biggest titles this year and next, like Fable: The Journey, Ghost Recon Future Soldier, and Star Wars.
Sony is similarly pushing game makers toward PlayStation Move, as well as toward making use of not only traditional control sticks and buttons with its next-generation portable PlayStation Vita, but a touch screen as well.
At its press event Monday evening, Sony's senior vice president of Worldwide Studios North America, Scott Rohde, described the concept of using Vita's regular controllers and touch screen and the ability to switch back and forth between them in the same game, on titles like Uncharted Golden Abyss, ModNation Racer, and Little Big Planet as "playing however you want."
There's a distinct challenge in persuading those who've grown up playing shooter games… Read more