Just like yesterday we are going to give you a recap of the day with the games we saw and played and heard about with expanded details to come in the official previews. Like yesterday, Charles and I will be giving our impressions and takes on things. This time HIS comments will be in italics and mine will be normal so with that, here we go (Patrick is in normal text and Charles is in fancy Italic).
Day One is always kind of stressful and weird and I end up feeling like I didn’t do enough. It is a shorter day and the crowd rushes to the things they are excited about so the lines are long and wait times are ridiculous. It is also a very exciting day because you get to see a bunch of things you weren’t expecting and you feel the thrill of discovery as you do laps around the Halls to see where everything is and what they have to offer. You will fight crowds like a bloodsport but it is still exciting and badass.
The first thing we checked out today, which was actually not in the halls but rather in the lobby, was Payday 2. I never played the first game but after watching Charles take a crack at this one I am pretty sold on it. It is essentially the gameplay of Left 4 Dead put into the heist action of Heat. It looked pretty fantastic and I am looking much more forward to August.
Payday 2 shares the same mentality as Left4Dead, 4 players NEED to cooperate to complete an objective. In this case it was busting out of the back of a truck hauling duffle bags chalk full of cocaine and being greeted by police SWAT. The experience was exactly what I wanted based on having played a few moments of the original (DLC included a L4D crossover map). This time around you can upgrade your character before and after each heist to have a more customizable experience a great mechanic for this type of experience.
After that we went into the West Hall to see about some PS4 and XBox One action. We didn’t see much because the place was so packed you could barely walk through the section. Glimpses were caught of some things but by and large these areas were clogged pretty badly. For all the nay saying about Xbox One, there were a ton of people in there trying to get their hands on it. Sony was even worse and we ended up fleeing. Hopefully Thursday will be kinder to us.
We headed over to South Hall where most of the games were and found ourselves in the line for the Mad Max theater experience. This is essentially just where you go in and watch the developers play a demo and tell you about the game. Mad Max looks pretty good with some cool car action and customization along with some decent out of the vehicle action. It was running on a PS4 and looked very nice.
Mad Max looks like an interesting experience from the folks who brought you Just Cause, the property is going to be a tag along for the new Tom Hardy movie and the character model is based off him. I am glad this is not an exclusive title for either next gen console. Stealth is not a major focus, brutal executions and vehicular combat are the driving factors here creating a visceral and unforgiving wasteland.
After this we got the lay of the land in this hall and after an abortive attempt at trying to get into Dead Rising 3, we went to our appointment at Bethesda. We were treated to half of a presentation of the Evil Within (hardware malfunctions are a bitch), Wolfenstein and Elder Scrolls Online. The Evil Within looks super promising for fans of Resident Evil 4 but we missed out on a lot of combat because of a fried graphics card. Wolfenstein looks really clean and takes place in an alternate timeline in which the Nazis have won and Bj Blaskowitz has woken up from a coma to find himself living in a nightmare. Hands on with the game was fun although there were some weird clipping issues but that is to be expected on a demo like this. Elder Scrolls Online was pretty great and the hands on time with that was awesome. It feels just like playing and Elder Scrolls game that is an MMO which, obviously is what it is, but I am saying it still feels like Elder Scrolls. The news that it will be fully playable in first person mode like Skyrim or the previous games makes it even better.
The Evil Within was so freaking crazy that it melted down their videocard, yeah that is hardcore. Wolfenstein looks absolutely like a good time from the footage we saw, the demo performed well enough but it will need to be tightened up quite a bit. Normally I am not an MMORPG guy but I have to say that it was very difficult to pull myself away from the Elder Scrolls Online experience once our 30 minute window was up, character creation seemed quite solid and the mechanics worked perfectly.
After Bethesda we had an appointment at Konami which included a booth tour by James and some hands on time with Castlevania Lords of Shadows 2. I was hoping for time with Metal Gear Solid 5 but oh well. We did learn that Kiefer Sutherland is taking over as the voice of Snake with is weird as shit. Castlevania felt a lot like the previous game but focused a bit more of the action and platforming than exploration. This is just a demo so it might not be representative of the whole but I liked what I played so far. There is a lot of combat variety and a return to the hectic boss fights that feel like you are playing Shadow of Colossus while dodging fire from some bastard in an angel costume.
That was pretty much our day. Tomorrow is packed with appointments and we won’t have much time for wandering but we will have some fantastic updates for you as we check out the Witcher 2, Steel Series, Square Enix and Sony Online Entertainment. See you then. Here are some random pictures: