E3 Day Zero: The Gallery To End All Galleries

By Nathan Grayson on June 11th, 2013 at 5:00 pm.

E3 2013 is in full swing, and – against all odds – it’s actually featured a few rather interesting developments. But there’s also been a lot of blah. And some bleh. And a whole, whole lot of yadda yadda yadda. I’m at the show, and I’ll have heaps more for you soon. For now, though, let’s start with the cream of the crop, the nextest of the future-gens. These games will surely carry the medium forward into a brave new place, what with all their bold new ideas and important strides toward new thematic ground. Do you want ‘SKLOOSIVE SHOTS of gaming’s bright tomorrow? Of course you do. #E3 #E32013 #swag #bilboswaggins    

Battlefield 4

Battlefield 4

Need For Speed: Rivals

Ubisoft’s The Crew

Assassin’s Creed IV. Or maybe III. II?

The Raving Rabbids TV show, which is now a thing

Ubisoft’s The Division. Evil flu pandemic? SHOOT IT.

Titanfall

Assassin’s Creed

Watch_Dogs

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124 Comments »

  1. roryok says:

    this whole post seems like a big whinge.

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      colossalstrikepackage says:

      It is but it bears repeating: the mainstream games industry is out of ideas and choking on its fumes. There are exactly zero big name titles that I’m keen to play in next gen console land.

      • derbefrier says:

        Its not like the PC gaming Industry is any different. I mean lets be honest with ourselves, if were are gonna chastise these people for lack of creativity we must not let our prejudice against consoles blind us from the truth. The gaming industry as a whole is stagnant. There are a few exceptions that are pushing boundaries such as Star Citizen but for every Star Citizen there’s 1000 gimmicky generic platformer indie games or another boring First person shooter or another kickstarter for another isometric rpg. This isnt a problem mutually exclusive to consoles and to pretend so is delusional.

        • Chris D says:

          But let’s not be blinded my cynicism either. 90% of everything may be crap but there are still a lot of of really interesting games being made.

          We’ve had Don’t Starve, Monaco, Reus and Gunpoint in the last month or so alone.

          • kincajou says:

            this

          • The Random One says:

            If you’re trying to counter the point is that the gaming industry is dying, pointing out that four of the most interesting games to have come out as of late have been made by small independent teams doesn’t help you at all.

        • BTAxis says:

          I think that problem lies not just with the industry but with the userbase as well. There is a limit to how different a game can be and still be embraced by a large enough audience to make it successful. I think in some ways the stagnation we’re seeing is the result of games as a medium having reached the limit of acceptance by the users.

        • ResonanceCascade says:

          Also important to note: just because a game doesn’t innovate doesn’t mean it can’t be good. Plenty of my favorite games are just an old formula executed with exceptional skill.

          But yes, a little more freshness would have been welcome this year. And last year. And the year before that. And.

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            darkChozo says:

            Arguably, video games as a medium are best served by embracing iteration. How many times have we seen a new concept executed mediocrely and then cleaned up in a sequel? Hell, you can even see it within series, Saint’s Row being a pretty good example.

          • KhanIHelpYou says:

            Saints Row is actually a perfect example; 1st is ok, 2nd is brilliant, 3rd gets developed by a new team with no clue and goes off the rails, 4th remains to be seen…

            Now we have battlefront; 1st is good, 2nd is great, 3rd… gets picked up by a new team (who so far have shown them self’s to be badly managed) and the result remains to be seen, it will almost certainly be a battlefield in space though

            What about Titanfall? I mean wow the history of this game is a real doozy. 2015, Inc make MoH:Allied Assault, arguably a brilliant game then run away because EA want them to make more and they don’t want to. So they set up Infinity Ward and make Call of Duty, which give or take a few features is effectively the same game but a bit newer. Iterate down the line a few years and IW guys want to leave Activision because they don’t want to make CoD anymore. They set up Respawn and we get Titanfall – or CoD in space with jetpacks and mechs.

            This is pure iteration, but is it really a good thing? Jetpacks and mechs are awesome and all but will Titanfall really be any better a game than CoD4. Is iteration on existing ideas, polishing up current mechanics, just giving us deminishing returns and leading to a certain amount of stagnation.

            How many times does a concept have to be iterated on before its too many.

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            Wisq says:

            I’m at least impressed that they’re willing to jump ship every time a publisher tries to lock them down. Because I’m firmly on their side, not the publisher’s.

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          GiantPotato says:

          Whoa there. PC game options are a lot like TV options right now. By percentage it’s almost pure crap, but the best of it is as innovative as gaming has ever been. I just can’t understand people talking about how stagnant everything is, personally I’m up to my neck in a backlog of games I don’t even have time to play. Here’s just a few:

          1. Legendary Heroes
          2. Borderlands 2
          3. X3
          4. TOME
          5. Spellforce 2
          6. Primordia
          7. Darksiders 1 and 2
          8. Crusader Kings II
          9. Stacking
          10. Avadon

          • Amphouse says:

            TOME is great, I’m happy you mentioned it. You should find time for it; I didn’t even like roguelikes before I played TOME.

            It’s also kinda sad the RPS has only mentioned it once, considering it’s both free and fantastic.

          • Mustard Wrap says:

            I would argue that any sequel is not new or innovative, and therefore is just contributing to the stagnating problem.
            Especially Borderlands 2.

          • Chalky says:

            It would be a sad world indeed if every game was doomed to be a one off. A sequel to an innovative or unusual game which expands on the concept can be innovative in its own right. This article isn’t complaining that every game isn’t a perfectly unique snowflake, it’s complaining about the number of games that are nothing but minuscule tweaks on an already over saturated concept.

            To say that a game like CK2 contributes to the stagnation of video games just because it is a sequel is madness.

        • Archonsod says:

          The PC industry is remarkably different, probably because anyone and their dog can write a game and release it onto the PC. As a result there’s a huge wealth of new ideas out there. Most won’t see huge success or be in any way comparable to the AAA mainstream bollocks, but again the benefit of being on the PC is that they don’t have to. Besides, I’m with Twain on that one; the only thing the majority has ever proven is that humanity is the dumbest animal on the planet.

          • Flopper says:

            XBLA has a ton of awesome indie games that the PC will never see. I think his point still stands that both platforms suffer the same problems.

          • DerNebel says:

            Basically this. Pure, unbridled volume. Admission for all! A lot of the games on PC are recycled old ideas, COD shooters, Skyrim, Xenonauts (I mean, come on!), a lot of the gimmicky indie platformers etc. etc.

            But the sheer amount of developers allow some real gems to shine. AI War exists and is bloody brilliant, if quite slow. Crusader Kings 2 is an absolutely awesome experience. Dota 2 and League of Legends are super tough, super fun and if you’d shown the concept to an investor back in the WC3 days he’d have laughed until he choked. Don’t Starve is cheap and absolutely awesome and athmospheric. The Binding of Isaac was a fantastic remix of several distinct games, from niche one-person developed roguelikes to mainstream Legend of Zelda. Monaco and Gunpoint are really smart concepts and in Monaco’s case presented with as much flair than any game I could name.

            On top of that, Kickstarter succes stories paves the way for a bright, fun future of the medium if even half the games deliver. Dead State is out the doors on the boxes and apparently absolutely awesome, with a PC version in the works. The big succes stories are of course all remixes or spiritual successors, but many of the smaller projects are looking really interesting.

            Yeah, a lot of PC gaming are sequels and remakes, but there is a ton of stuff out there that simply doesn’t make it to the consoles because the are too closed and hard a market to break in to.

          • EvaUnit02 says:

            @DerNebel. You’re thinking of State of Decay. Dead State is an isometric, turn-based RPG.

      • Upper Class Twit says:

        Well, that’s just like, your opinion man.

        I for one, am mildly excited for at least a good third of the “big name titles” shown during the conference.

      • Shuck says:

        It’s not that there are no ideas, it’s that the AAA portion of the industry doesn’t dare to use them. The more money spent on development, the “safer” the game has to be. That is, every element of the game must have a proven track record selling previous games. As the amount of money needed to make a AAA game has exploded, the more game setting and design get locked down. It certainly doesn’t help that games are designed by committee as well, but they follow the same basic economic rules that every other entertainment follows – you have to know you have the audience capable of supporting the product before you spend the money.
        It’s true for something as low-production-cost as a novel – sometimes they’re unpublishable, not because they’re bad, but because the audience doesn’t exist to pay back the costs of publishing it. AAA games are now operating like Hollywood block-buster movies – they have to appeal to the widest possible audience to just break even, and that means not taking any risks.

    • burningsensation says:

      Shine on you crazy diamond.

  2. Revolving Ocelot says:

    Drink cactus juice!

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    darkChozo says:

    There’s an obvious mistake here, that last quote should be attached to a picture of Garden Warfare.

  4. WantOn says:

    I demand that Bilboswaggins be a new tag. Also – I see what you did there.

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      colossalstrikepackage says:

      This. Perhaps replace #sony with it. They hit a home run by saying the simplest things. Can anybody imagine a year ago that gamers would be cheering for a PS4 that let’s them buy games, instead of renting? Hopefully this is the end of MS xbone, and we get some love as PC gamers this console cycle at least? #bepositive #livesinfairyland

    • TheThinkTanker says:

      Mo’ like Brodo Swaggins.

  5. Nick says:

    don’t care, Rocksmith 2014 looks yummy.

  6. pakoito says:

    The only manshoot that got my thing going was Destiny, a well implemented Borderlands with a sense of scale, and that one is not coming to PC :(

    The Division looked okish until they said it was an MMO, which makes no sense at all.

  7. biggergun says:

    But… But… More polygonal polygons! Shootier manshoots! More serviceable fanservice! This is why we love our hobby so much… Right?

  8. lijenstina says:

    Creativity is phrasing differently something already said before about creativity.

    • RobinOttens says:

      To rephrase something said about creativity, that is creativity.

      Also, Master Chief wrapped in an old blanket looks super silly. Why would he wear cloth over his already bulky temperature-regulating power armor? Oh wait, it’s so he can reveal his helmet in dramatic fashion at the end of the trailer.

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        darkChozo says:

        Obviously so his olive green paint job doesn’t fade in the desert sun. Duh.

      • tungstenHead says:

        It takes a certain creative knack to say something worthwhile about creativity.

        Also, that isn’t a Master Chief shoop? That actually happened?

      • BooleanBob says:

        To keep sand out of his crevices? Even supersoldiers hate to itch.

      • PatrickSwayze says:

        Don’t get me started on that. Armour that can take multiple atmospheric re-entries needing a fucking cloak.

        Oh, the sun his eyes you say? Not like the visor isn’t reactive.

        Holes letting dust in? Halo 4 magically added NANOMACHINES SON so that wouldn’t be an issue.

        UGH I’m so done Halo since Bungie gave the reigns over and the extended universe was bastardised too.

        Guess 343 forgot about the Halo 3 trailers which had chief walking through a desert to see something big. Fuck.

        I’m nearly having an anger puke here.

      • lijenstina says:

        It is to some extent, and also is pretty pointless because no new knowledge is conveyed. More creative is speaking about new topics. :)

        And cleaning all the dust from the body armor creases is a chore. I wonder if he just walks into a car wash to do so when he is not wearing a robe.

      • TheThinkTanker says:

        Perhaps he wears the cloak as a disguise, so that anybody looking for him won’t recognize him on sight. I mean, the iconic olive green supersoldier armo(u)r is kind of conspicuous, right?

      • Koozer says:

        I was 100% certain that shot was from some parody video, like the one with Darth Vader in various outfits with helmet.

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        psepho says:

        The cloak is conceptual stand in for a dress. New Halo is about Masterchief challenging, and ultimately freeing himself from, the constraining and emotionally stunted conception of masculinity represented by his power armour.

      • serioussgtstu says:

        I didn’t watch the Microsoft conference, but from that picture of the master chief I can only assume that he has become a Franciscan monk and that Halo 5 is about quietly contemplating secular scripture and/or sending considerate apology letters to the families of all those aliens he smushed before he found Jeebus.

      • KirbyEvan says:

        It wasn’t Halo, it was the Master Chief™ $9.99 DLC for Journey, coming soon to the Xbox One!

  9. BooleanBob says:

    I never realised that was Bono’s full name.

  10. Jim Rossignol says:

    Rabbids, eh? Ah, the good times we had.

  11. coldvvvave says:

    Where is Witcher 3? It fits perfectly into this list.

  12. moyogo says:

    The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.
    - Me.

  13. Capt. Eduardo del Mango says:

    Nathan, I don’t think Alec’s quite on message. You’d best go quote Dostoyevsky at him until he stops playing such silly games.

  14. DiamondDog says:

    You might as well just post “yawn” and be done with it.

  15. SirKicksalot says:

    Little did I know that when the doctor was giving me flu shot and said “Don’t worry, it’ll be over soon” he was making a rape joke…

    • Niko says:

      It’s in the context. Although who knows, those doctors nowadays…

    • DerNebel says:

      Context, dude.

      I wouldn’t think twice if one of my friends made a joke like that while playing a game, but here it objectified a single woman in front of hundreds of men. The planners of the presentation actually thought that is what the audience would expect to hear and find funny. That shit is creepy.

    • Liudeius says:

      What? That was a rape joke? I just thought it was a horribly scripted and acted display of a fighting game.

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      darkChozo says:

      If your doctor follows it up with “oh, you like this”, then you should start worrying.

      • Wood Raptor says:

        Apart from the fact he said ‘Wow, you like those?’ in reference to the constant and repeated use of fireball/hadoken. I wouldn’t base your opinion on shoddy journalism. Also, I would take a reasoned punt that the ‘Just let it happen’ is meant literally, not metaphorically, in the context of the fighting game… and not rape.

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          darkChozo says:

          Shoddy journalism on my part, fittingly enough, I misheard the video. Though to be fair, the woman very clearly heard the same thing (she responds with “no, I don’t like this”).

          The wording’s a bit awkward – “just let it happen”, “it’ll be over soon”, and anything that sounds like “you like this” (and it’s primed pretty hard to be misheard as such) don’t exactly paint the best picture together. For what it’s worth, I think that painting this as anything but adlibbing gone wrong is a bit silly, though.

    • MrEclectic says:

      Dr Kitchener – Dr Kitch aka the Needle

      Consensual but a tad forced version of the needle.

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    TheApologist says:

    God, I’d missed the rape ‘joke’. Who the fuck actually says that to another person? Why would anyone think that is ok?

    Sorry, but I’m angry and that is not a thing that is in any way ok, but there it is at the press conference of one of the industry’s biggest players. This industry is sick.

    • Niko says:

      There’s a huge discussion of this on Badass Digest (they mostly write about films, but some gaming news are covered as well).

    • DerNebel says:

      Yeah… That joke crossed the line a bit. I mean, friends who know each other well can make pretty crude jokes with no hard feelings, but that doesn’t count when demoing a game on stage in front of a dominantly young male audience.

      Location, location, location.

    • SirKicksalot says:

      What kind of sick motherfucker thinks about rape when hearing such a commonly used expression?
      As a Youtube comment puts it, did you also think about slavery when she told the black dude she’s going to own him?

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        TheApologist says:

        I can just about see how someone could make a sensible argument along the lines of:
        ‘It obviously sounds terrible, but it is possible that it was just an ill judged comment that wasn’t meant as badly as it sounded’. Almost. They’d be wrong, but I can see it.

        You on the other hand called me a ‘sick motherfucker’ and imply that I have a problem with thinking about rape in entirely innocent circumstances. In other words, you are a tiresome little fool attempting to defend the indefensible.

        • DerNebel says:

          Oh, it was defensible. Right up until he said “Oh you like this.”. And even then, if it was among friends I’d still say it was fine.

          You can’t call people “sick motherfuckers” for picking up subext in a specific context. Still, it was just a single “bleh” moment in an uneventful night. Not really something to get worked into a haze over. It’s a bit creepy that PR officials think this is what we want to hear when two people are playing a game together, but nothing too out of the ordinary.

          • Wood Raptor says:

            Again, the guy playing clearly says ‘Wow, you like those’ in reference to the constant hadokens going on (3 or 4 in a row), and the woman responds to the off-the-cuff trash talking, incorrectly in context, also in the heat of the moment, with “No, I don’t like this.” There’s nothing to this rape claim, other than shoddy journalism.

        • MarcP says:

          He’s not implying it. This is what you are. I would have never thought this could be a rape joke without someone spelling it out for me, and I’m still not convinced at this point. It’s getting increasingly funny watching Internet angry men against rape acting more and more like those homophobe politicians who turn out to be gay.

    • Widthwood says:

      Went to youtube for a daily dose of rage. Was hugely disappointed.

      The only thing I got from it is that they have old idiots writing their presentation scripts, crudely trying to emulate “gamer talk” and somehow failing.

  17. Koozer says:

    For all the bashing Nintendo receives for leaning on their old IP, and releasing a weird stop-gap console, at least they actually make games that are a little different. See Pikmin, Fire Emblem, Legend of Zelda, Metroid Prime series. I wish they’d do another F-Zero…

    • DerNebel says:

      101 heroes or whatever that thing was called actually looks really fun. Silly, childish fun. Something there should always be space for in any mind.

      Also, super stoked for the next Super Smash Bros. I love that series.

      Not really PC gaming, but the games are at least not shooters, rpgs, racing games or “social media experiences”.

      • Koozer says:

        The Animal Crossing villager looks like a complete psychopath as he beats Mario about the face, face frozen in a perpetual cheery grin. It’s brilliant.

  18. shofixti244 says:

    After Halo 4, Master Chief wanders the deserts of earth pondering the deepest truths of game design, feeling the heavy burden of his own repetitious actions and iterations, he embarks on a quest for true creativity. Join us in Halo: Combat Iterated and follow the adventures of Master Cheif As… THE GAME SAGE.

  19. int says:

    Does Halo wear a robe to keep his armor shiny?

    • Grargh says:

      You know Halo, he’s a pretty cool guy like that.

    • Liudeius says:

      Halo’s the man. I hear they’re putting him and Zelda in a Nintendo vs M$ fighting game.

  20. Liudeius says:

    I initially skipped over this, then I noticed the irony of the quote, and proceeded to read the rest of the pictures.

    Good show RPS.

  21. Nova says:

    I wouldn’t throw The Crew in there. I mean the only other games that did this were the TDU’s, as far as I know. And they aren’t exactly mainstream.

    • Liudeius says:

      The crew still sounds pretty standard. Couldn’t you do the exact same thing in a NFS game where you were in a coma and could switch from body to body around town?

      Sure, they added multiplayer to that idea, but it’s still just racing cars. (I will be watching it though, I’ve been wanting a good racing game recently.)

      I would say Watch Dogs doesn’t belong there. While it looks more simplistic than it suggests (one button press does everything), it could be pretty good. But then again, it’s probably just GTA with a different plot.

      Ah well, the PS3 games are looking good.

      • Viroso says:

        “it is still just vague description

        I can say that about every game ever made to make it sound bad.

        • Liudeius says:

          Perhaps, but you get the point. It’s still just an FPS, it’s still just a generic fantasy game, it’s still just AssCreed with boats.

          The topic is emphasizing the fact that none of this is very creative.
          Racing games are a standard on new consoles, and this one, while potentially good, doesn’t appear to have anything that new to offer. It’s racing in an open world, done by plenty of games.
          FPS’s are standard, the new Battlefield may or may not have fully destructible environments like Red Faction (I’m betting not), but it’s still a very safe, repetitive game by the looks of it.

          Perhaps my statement could be used on unique games as well (“It’s still a space sim” KSP, “It’s still a hack and slash” Bastion, “It’s still a puzzle platformer” Psychonauts.”), but I’m sure you can understand what I mean when I said “It’s still a racing game.” I did not say it without prior qualifier, and you can easily extrapolate from that what it is that I might find generic.

          • Upper Class Twit says:

            I’m pretty sure the thing that would make The Crew “creative” is the fact that its striving to do something different within the context of the racing genre, that being to make an open world much larger than anything seen before. Sort of like how Planetside 2 is praised as being creative for doing something different in the context of military multiplayer FPSes, that being its huge scale.

            For that matter, why does creativity have to mean “this thing doesn’t fit into any other established genre”?

          • Nova says:

            Yeah, what Upper Class Twit said.
            To say it’s still a racing game is silly. In comparison to its peers it looks pretty creative to me.

          • Liudeius says:

            Good doesn’t mean creative, even innovative doesn’t necessarily mean creative.
            I’m not criticizing The Crew, but it isn’t anything new. Driver San Fransisco has a game world which was a lot like this looks, GTA IV multiplayer has been used as a racing game like this (though racing only, not heists), and just a few days ago, RPS was advertising another indie PC game which was focused on big open world racing.
            http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2013/06/04/road-worriers-ocean-city-racing/

            Read all the quotes on creativity in the pictures. I would especially emphasize the quote “Creativity involves breaking out of established patterns.”
            And that is what this comes down to. This isn’t something new. It has been done, and even if it hadn’t, does it take creativity to do it, or just the common place realization that multiplayer racing and sandboxes are fun?

            Are better graphics creative? It’s often referred to as innovation, and it is an improvement over the old, but no, better graphics are just something everyone strives for.
            Unique graphics though, that’s something you could argue is creative.

            Are bigger more complex games creative? Skyrim may have been made by the “creativity” of its staff, but is the game itself creative? No, it’s just an improvement (or some would say demotion) from Oblivion, following the same “established patterns.”

            PlanetSide 2 is not creative. Perhaps you could call it innovative, I’m not aware of other FPS’s on quite that scale, but it is not creative.

            Creativity is not simply progressing along the linear quality scale. You aren’t creative for leveling up in a game, you are creative for finding a unique way to play it.

            Once again, I’m not saying The Crew will be bad, and it is made by the “creativity” of its staff, but ultimately, that creativity is simply backtracking over what has already been done. The game itself is not creative. It looks very safe, and the final gameplay will probably be very similar to any other racing game.
            It may be innovative (I’m not well versed enough in racing games to say), but it is not creative.

          • Upper Class Twit says:

            Huh. Good points, I guess. but if all that’s the case, then what would you consider to be a “creative” game. Castle Wolfenstein? Minecraft maybe? The first ever MMO? (wasn’t it like, Ultima online or something?)

          • Viroso says:

            Well, my point was that when you say “it is just whatever” you are simplifying it. There seems to be a lot more to the crew than “just a racing game”. There’s more to innovation than reinventing the wheel. This game is apparently throwing the entire US for you to use as a racing track and it lets you jump from place to place with no load times, and we don’t even know what they have planned for this. There’s more to a good game than innovation, creativity.

            So what I’m saying is let’s avoid calling stuff “just” a thing because that’s always simplifying what it really is.

            BTW I don’t mean to say the game’s creative, but I also don’t think that’s the end all be all. I also don’t think we should be answering “is it creative” with yes or no.

          • Liudeius says:

            Upper Class Twit:
            Typing this actually made me think about that. I didn’t provide examples because I thought about a few, then asked myself “was that really creative?”
            I’m not sure. Many games which I would like to call creative could just be appealing to an audience outside of the mainstream AAA stuff, like FTL, Bastion, Minecraft.
            “First genre” games are definitely creative, they define the genre, and I might take Minecraft into this. It seems to have opened the gates to quite a number of open world, randomly generated, survival and “voxel” terrain games.
            Something like FTL, where I can’t pin it to a direct inspiration or progression from a prior game, I would also call creative.
            But I’m not sure about Bastion. Maybe that’s just a really good game. The narration was highly lauded, but I’m not sure that’s enough to say the game as a whole was creative, rather than one aspect of its development. You kind of have to separate creativity in the sense of finding a way to do something in your game, and creativity in the sense of that something you are doing being new and unique.

            I suppose this brings us back to Viroso’s “just a ___” point. Even creativity can be simplified to sound boring.

            Viroso:
            I guess I see your point, my “just a” comment was largely in relation to creativity.
            As a racing game it certainly looks like something to watch, as this model might be the next “innovation” in racing. But I still say, it’s driving cars in a similar style to that which has been done before, while it may turn out to be good and an innovation in racing games, I have not seen (in this announcement at least) something which suggests great creativity to me.

      • colw00t says:

        The dude-in-a-coma-wot-switches-from-car-to-car was Driver: San Francisco, which was actually a nice bit of silly fun.

  22. Drinking with Skeletons says:

    You know what I’m tired of? Novels. They haven’t changed in centuries! Every one of them is about the human condition, and they feature protagonists who have to overcome hardship to grow as individuals. I’m sick of it!

    /sarcasm

    People who make video games need to sell them. People buy games they believe will entertain them. A genre cannot be successful if there isn’t an audience willing to buy a lot of really similar works. Even in the most flooded genres, good works will appear that will remind people of why they enjoyed that type of work in the first place. The answer is not to bemoan the next generation, as if it’s a message of doom written on the sky in letters of fire. The answer is to not buy a new console–and the titles associated with it, regardless of platforms–until you hear of enough titles that interest you to justify your investment. You’ll be surprised how much better the quality of your entertainment is if you don’t subject yourself to everything available and instead pick-and-choose.

    Of course, I don’t have a job where I have to play everything, so…sucks to be you?

    • Liudeius says:

      Actually, your sarcasm is very much a real thing.
      Haven’t you heard everyone complaining about how Star Wars plot = Harry Potter = Eragon.
      That’s because they all use a similar structure called the “Hero’s Journey” which accounts for a few standards of well received writing.
      Videos explaining it (in relation to Journey).
      http://extra-credits.net/episodes/the-heros-journey-part-1/
      http://extra-credits.net/episodes/the-heros-journey-part-2/

      The reason the Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones) became popular is because it doesn’t use this common trope as its entire framework.

      I realize your point, I’m just saying the same does in fact apply to books. Some are well written, others use tired clichés to relate to the same audience over and over and over.

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        darkChozo says:

        I’m pretty sure that saying that SoIaF is popular because it doesn’t adhere to the Hero’s Journey is, at best, a gross oversimplification.

        • Liudeius says:

          True, but I mean whenever I’ve been recommended it prior to the TV show, the recommendation went something along the lines of “the plot’s actually good not generic like _____ (book using Hero’s Journey as a rule rather than a recommendation).”

      • Drinking with Skeletons says:

        Oh, I know that the sarcasm can be taken seriously. I have a degree in English, so I know all too well about cliches and all of that. Hell, it’s gotten to the point that I can often predict the beats of a story in trailers for films because the plots are so predictable. But this is true even of excellent works.

        George R.R. Martin writes a damned good fantasy novel, but he consciously uses and dissects genre conventions. The Chosen One? Check. A mysterious, ancient evil returns? Check. An orphan who undergoes a transition to a new, more powerful position in life? Check. And he’s hardly the only writer injecting harshness and violence into fantasy; it’s almost become a cliche that a fantasy world is no longer one of wonder but one of abject poverty, daily horror, and grotesque brutality, except sometimes you have wizards and orcs.

        I’m just a little peeved whenever people dismiss the work of others’ out of hand like that. I’ve never made a videogame, but I’d wager money it’s hard. And from what I know of human nature, most of the people involved didn’t put it in their mission statements that they should create only hackneyed horseshit to sell to idiots. Even crappy games are usually made by people who wanted them to be good.

        • Viroso says:

          Same here. I wish RPS would quit this sort of lazy criticism, breeding bullshit cynicism that you so often see from the 20 to 30 something gamer.

          Then, some time from now RPS will be drooling over The Witcher 3 and a bunch of nostalgia fueled Kickstarter games. Criticize shooters but then the next day praises Far Cry 3 or Rising Storm.

          It isn’t that Rising Storm or Kickstarter games are as bad as the mainstream. It is that mainstream isn’t as awful as the jaded gamer likes to say it is. The same jaded gamer who will uncritically open concessions for the mainstream games they love. Then continue to make easy, lazy criticism, dismissing the hard work people did as crap just on the merit of it being “mainstream” because mainstream = evil.

          For me it comes out as criticism based on social standing rather than actually trying to think critically.

          • Upper Class Twit says:

            It does get a bit tiresome. you’d imagine that they’d strive to judge games equally, but they only seem to give budget, indy, or PC exclusive games the benefit of the doubt, whereas anything from a big publisher immediately gets hit with the snark hammer.

            At the very least though, they’re doing something different from the rest of the gaming press.

          • Viroso says:

            Yeah that’s true. I mean RPS is pretty good only sometimes they can’t resist being jaded for the sake of it.

      • TheTedinator says:

        The Eragon-Star Wars connection goes far beyond sharing the hero’s journey. I hear this a lot, and it is so much more blatant.

        • Liudeius says:

          Not really, at least by my understanding of Hero’s Journey (though I’ve not read the book which is supposedly its origin), all of the commonalities between those two stories are explained by it. Hell, you can find it in Lord of the Rings too which predates all of those.
          The mentor who falls (Gandalf, Ben, Dumbledore, Brom),
          The disadvantaged youth (Frodo, Luke, Harry, Eragon),
          The empowerment of the main character (the Ring, the Force, Magic, Dragons),
          The great calling/evil (Sauron, Palpatine, Voldermort, Galbatorix),
          The redeemed character (Gollum, Vader, Snape, Probably Murtaugh I’ve not finished the books)

          Luckas (according to the linked video) even says he relied heavily on Hero’s Journey for Star Wars, so I have no doubt that the framework of Star Wars is Hero’s Journey.
          What annoys me most about the Star Wars-Eragon comparison is that, even without knowing about Hero’s Journey, the most often criticized plot points claimed to “copy” Star Wars are things which you could accuse Star Wars of copying from Lord of the Rings. (And in fact, they all copied from the same set of themes.)

  23. Premium User Badge

    RedViv says:

    Some quote on fun or some such would be appropriate for a screen of the new and FINALLY grim and gritty Dead Rising. Because that’s what it needed.

  24. Drinking with Skeletons says:

    I hate to defend Ubisoft–really, I do, they’re an awful, evil company–but it’s hard to get angry about Assassin’s Creed being repeated endlessly. Sure, there are a ton of them now, but they’re all one series, and Ubi funnels money into them and seemingly lets the guy who’s in charge do whatever he feels like. Parkour? Sure. Stabbing? Why not? Sea battles in the Age of Sail, in a free-roaming ocean into which you can dive for sunken treasure? We’re insulted you even felt you had to ask permission!

    Seriously, the main complaint of the last Assassin’s Creed wasn’t that it was just another AC (although that was certainly said) but that it was so bloated, so self-indulgent, that it crushed a lot of the fun. When we start seeing multiple AAA franchises release yearly, 20+ hour installments in which the lead designer can indulge in his wildest, most player-suffocating ideas, then we can complain about it without it sounding kind of ludicrous.

    Instead, we should focus on the franchise’s terrible story, tedious missions, and hefty system requirements.

    • Premium User Badge

      colossalstrikepackage says:

      And it’s unending love of freaking Desmond. Say what you want about Bioware, but they actually responded to player feedback.

  25. Monkey says:

    Holding games from it’s next step forward? Ultimately it’s the control mechanism. Take Bioshock Infinite, great story, great setting, it still essentially boils down to man-shootery-ness. Its only when we change how we experience games there will be real change.

    Plus titanfall looks cool…

  26. Premium User Badge

    psepho says:

    The more I look at AAA games the more I see a disconnect between the way that publishers conceive them and the way that market seems to operate. Publishers are very wedded to the idea of the ‘opening weekend box office hit’. Trying to recreate 80s/90s Hollywood. But the way I see games sold and discussed (at least in PC gaming which is all I know) points much more towards a long-tail style of market comparable with books in the post-Amazon era: old games continuing to sell and being rediscovered on GOG and places; price drops, Steam sales and bundles replicating some of the mechanics of the paperback vs hardback market, lots of space for outliers to grow slowly by word of mouth. Etc etc

    From the vantage point of my armchair, my top tip for the industry would be to slash budgets, take chances on a much greater variety of smaller games and design with an eye to longevity, paperback pricing and the long-tail. Looking at these screenshots feels like looking back in time.

    • Jimbo says:

      Publishers have the advantage over you here in that they probably don’t disregard out of hand the entire market they’re designing those AAA games for.

      The money up for grabs on GoG is a rounding error to these guys.

  27. Widthwood says:

    Pics that didn’t make it to the post:

    rockpapershotgun.com/images/13/jun/insp11.jpg (this one was forgotten by mistake probably)
    rockpapershotgun.com/images/13/jun/insp2.jpg
    rockpapershotgun.com/images/13/jun/insp16.jpg

  28. Jimbo says:

    “And some bleh.”

    This is beneath you, RPS. And no, that wasn’t a rape joke either before you start crying about it. Or that.

  29. Shodex says:

    The irony is that these are a bunch of quotes that say the generally same thing, and they’re all being reused.

  30. Alextended says:

    Personally I’m looking forward to seeing how Titanfall, The Division, MGSV, X, Mario 3D World, Dark Souls II, AC4, Watch Dogs, Pikmin 3, Bayonetta 2, FFXV, Destiny, Witcher 3, Batkman: Arkham Origins, Mirror’s Edge 2, Thief 4 and many other titles will shape up. None of them are really the same. Mostly MGSV though. I do hope that gets a PC release. I’m not much of a car nut, though Ubi’s The Crew could be interesting and Mario Kart is a must every generation. For deeper stories and less action there are the various CRPGs and adventures I’ve helped fund (some such strategic titles were at E3 too, like Shin Megami Tensei IV). And hey, maybe Dragon Age 3 is a return to form. Probably not though.

    I’m sorry you don’t see the immense variety available to gamers these days and choose to focus on being jaded about certain vague themes (like guns, even Beyond has guns, but I doubt it’s your average FPS).

  31. Echo_Hotel says:

    The Dreams I have and ask “why not?”
    Imagine if in some game, lets say Fallout 4, there was a deep and realistic intimidation and morale system.
    If the Gang Members watched 2 of their friends heads explode and surrendered begging for their lives.
    If you aimed your bazooka at a Hobo across the street he would panic but a Shopkeeper in a confined space would call your bluff.
    If you could call a stalemate with your pinned down opponent.

    I want NPCs who care if they live or die.

    What are you guys’ dream features / innovations?

    • Widthwood says:

      Deeper NPC’s have always been one of CRPG’s holy grail, only this is a hellish task to actually implement. We just don’t have yet a technology, that can be pasted into a game to create believable reactions, and simply using more hardcoded reactions will lead to more erratic and unpredictable behavior.

      Like, should an NPC be offended if I shoved my dick in his face? Obviously. How about changing armor in front of him before selling stuff? If I throw a vase into his face, will he attack me? Call the guards? Will they throw me in jail for that? How about throwing a flower or a coin – will that be an offense? What if he notices me behind him – should he become suspicious? Probably. But what’s the difference between walking behind him to look at a shelf, and walking behind him to pickpocket? If you push a gang member being 20 levels higher than him, should he beg for mercy? What if you obviously did not mean that? How can you tell if someone would know the power of your weapons or not? And since you are probably carrying tonns of deadly weapons and explosives, shouldn’t EVERY non-psycho be initially scared shitless of you?

      Simpler interactions are at least predictable, you can safely assume the basic rules of a world and act accordingly. The more actions NPCs will understand and interpret in their own way, the more actions they will MIS interpret and get totally wrong. It’s like realism of 3D models, there is a huge limbo area between “non-realistic” and “completely identical to real life” that technology have to jump across to make that step forward, and we are currently nowhere near needed level of emulation.

  32. Fred S. says:

    Wow, it’s true, the whole feminist choir are singing from the same page. Of course Google doesn’t actually find those lines anywhere that isn’t the same feminist choir singing that same song. But it must be true anyway.

  33. Zekiel says:

    Just wanted to say I like this post. Sure, there isn’t really anything wrong with “more of the same” in games *as long as there’s also innovation*. And it just doesn’t seem like that’s being promoted by the big developers at E3. And that’s sad.

    And in my opinion there’s nothing wrong with poking fun at that lack of innovation.

    Still, I’m really interested to see what the next generation of consoles will mean for my beloved PC gaming…