Who ‘Won’ E3 And Other Assorted Musings

E3 happened last week! It was full of glitz and glamour and Z-list celebrities and A-list zombies and TV TV sports and cars and also games sometimes. I was there all by my lonesome, because I hate sleep and love hoarding awful press room box lunches so I can pile their damp, discarded remains into impregnable Journalism Forts. Also, to observe, learn, and then wordpuke forecasts of certain doom for the gaming industry onto this here Internet. You heard me: DOOOOOOOM. OK, actually, we’re probably going to be fine. But I do have some things to rant about, because I’m still sleep-deprived and grumpy. Also, there might be a slight chance of doom.     

Who Won E3… By Dystopic Big Brother Marketing Survey Future Standards – Microsoft. After the Xbox One’s dismal reveal, it came out double-fisting cold ones for some nebulous testosterone firehose target demographic instead of, you know, actual humans. Moreover, it refused to give any ground on its awful DRM and online requirement policies, continued to charge a hefty subscription for the mere ability to play games online, very nearly ignored indies entirely, and pretty much just stuck to the same old song and dance routine as always – except each joyful “next-gen tesseloflop realistic-er QTE promptblop” chorus ended on an exceedingly sour note.

Who Won E3… By Sensible Consolebox Standards – Sony. It’s kind of depressing, too, given that all they really did was say, “Hey, you know all that mind-bogglingly tone-deaf stuff Microsoft’s betting the farm on? Well, we’re doing the opposite.” Thing is, the opposite in this case basically means sticking to the same guns that got it through the PS3 era (with an admittedly admirable eye for excellent indies). No DRM, no restrictions on trade-ins, no silently observing camera that has one eye constantly slithering beneath your skin. No any of that because duh. That’s not what humans want. It’s just a shame that in this era, building a machine for people – not bipedal marketing surveys in $10,000 suits – is worthy of raucous praise. Shouldn’t that be, you know, the baseline? This should not be how you earn a gold star.

Who Won E3… By Really Low Standards – Nintendo. I mean, I guess there’s another Super Smash Bros now? People like that, right? And Mario, he’s… he’s still doing things. Oh, and don’t forget that remake of the last Zelda game anyone actually liked. Or maybe do. That’s about the only way any of this lineup will feel fresh again.

Who Won E3… By Already Being A Way Better Option Than Everything Else Standards – PC! I already covered this in quite a bit of detail, but it bears repeating: PC continues to pave the way for many aspects of gaming’s future, but everyone on triple-A’s money showering stage seems frighteningly determined to ignore both its successes and its failures. I desperately want the entire gaming industry to be healthy, but oh well. More great things for us I guess?

Who Won E3… By Standards That Are Actually Interesting And Worth Reading About – Indies. No, they did not have a very strong presence at the actual show. Indies Crash E3 and Indiecade were both relegated to tiny corners of their respective halls, so far off in the distance that I had to hire an expedition leader and a small yet resilient donkey named Juarez to reach them. Horizon, meanwhile, took place at an art museum miles away from the convention center. But it was their mentality that spread like a virus.

Honestly, it was this year’s hyper-contagious E3 flu – except instead of pounding me into a puddle of my own weeping fluids, it breathed wind back in my weary sails. Every other journo I talked to pretty much reiterated the same thing: “Yeah, this year’s been alright, but nothing’s really wowing me. Nothing’s standing out, except… oh! Did you go to Indiecade yet? How about Horizon’s conference?”

Even bigger companies couldn’t help but come down with the bug. Sony devoted a sumptuous chunk of its press conference to indies, with everything from Transistor to Octodad strutting across the stage in their Important Pants. Meanwhile, studios like CD Projekt, Double Fine, and Telltale confessed to me that they never want to let things like growth and triple-A production values stymie “indie” creative spirit. To be frank, E3 needed that infusion of grassroots passion after last year’s sleepy showing. This is still the big boys’ playground, but hopefully in time the ratio won’t be quite so skewed.

Who Won E3… Is An Arbitrary Designation Entirely Rooted In Opinion And Doesn’t Usually Matter Even A Few Months Later, So I Think I’ve Made My Point Here – Yeah.

So PC Isn’t A Gaming Platform Now? – So how about Respawn Entertainment’s Titanfall, huh? Looks like quite the game of stompy stompy bang bang, right? Shame it’s an Xbox One exclusive… except oh wait. It’s also coming to PC. Same with Microsoft’s Project Spark, Witcher 3, World of Tanks (which we already have), and probably Remedy’s Quantum Break, Dead Rising 3, and Sword and Sworcery dev Capy’s Below. PS4 also has countless “exclusives” that will inevitably either launch on or migrate to PC, and let’s not even get started on all the pussyfooting nonsense Ubisoft’s doing around post-pandemic MMO The Division.

It’s like publishers and console-makers are ashamed to admit that they still need PC. Or maybe they’re even a bit afraid. And why shouldn’t they be? A platform that many major players once left for dead managed to evolve beyond the need for them. No unified distribution platform? Meet Steam. No exclusives? Try free-to-play, thousands of indies, most MOBAs, and a colossal back catalog of classics that actually still work. Nothing that discourages piracy? Meet Steam and free-to-play, um, again. PC will survive, thrive, and evolve with or without the likes of Microsoft, Ubisoft, and EA affixed to its girthy underbelly. And it will almost certainly continue to outpace them.

Why commit to a role when you can’t even be the main character? Something like that, I guess.

Hey, Is Sexism Still A Thing At E3? – Yep, sexism is still a thing at E3. Barely any female main characters (or even vaguely capable sidekicks), highly inappropriate jokes at female presenters’ expense, thinly veiled (in more ways than one) booth babes, etc, etc, etc. You name it. It’s difficult to even be surprised anymore. The industry’s making baby steps, but E3 has an especially long way to go.

“Social” Now Means “Be A Jerk To Your Friends” – Watch_Dogs, Need For Speed: Rivals, and many more all want to “blur the lines between single-player and multiplayer” by allowing you to drop in and out of friends’ otherwise solo games on-the-fly. In Watch_Dogs, this means “hacking” your friend and potentially killing them. Need For Speed’s approach is similar, except with less magical technomancing super phones and more angry battle cars.

Regardless, it’s often about finding creative ways to blindside your friends with misery. They’re trying to do something else, and – boom – there you are, laughing so hard that you nearly slip in a puddle of their blood. Maybe I’m a purist, but don’t we have separate competitive modes for when we’re feeling, you know, competitive? Moreover, how is it a competition if it begins in an inherently lopsided, sneaky fashion? To my knowledge, you can disable the “mingleplayer” functionality in both games, but I guess I just don’t quite understand the appeal in the first place.

People Really Liked Dark Souls – Which is presumably the reason nearly every developer now cites it as a “big influence”. I don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing, though. More real difficulty, tension, and consequence in games? Yes please. Need an example? Check out former Witcher lead Tomasz Gop’s Lords of the Fallen (which I’ll be writing more about soon).

Games Will Be About Guns, Cars, And Zombies Forever – OK, maybe I’m exaggerating, but goodness is triple-A ever stuck in a rut. I mean, can we just make Football: The First-Person Legend of Guncar: The Game Of The Live-Action Trailer and be done with it? Just, you know, wipe the slate clean and move forward? Of course not. That’s not how a titanic industry – held high by shareholders’ brittle backs – works. Time and necessity will push triple-A into uncharted territory. Let’s just hope the tired old giant gets a move on before everyone stops caring.

But Now We’re Telling “Human” Stories About Killing (Woooooo) – See, because there are dogs now, and soldiers have to make really tough ethical decisions about which dude to shoot. Call of Duty: Ghosts and Battlefield 4, especially, are running with the Mass Murderer With A Heart Of Gold angle, and I guess it’s something akin to progress. At least Infinity Ward and DICE seem to kind of understand that people are interested in – drumroll – people. But if these stories are just as vapid and meaningless as ever (and let’s face it: the chances are good), then I’m going to be howling/barking/etc mad. In an industry that’s severely lacking any sort of humanity, the last thing we need is to start throwing around “human” as an empty buzzword. If it becomes the next “visceral,” I think that’s it. I’m fucking out.

We’re Discussing Important Societal Issues… But Only When They’re Overblown And Dumb – Following on that, some corners of the triple-A world are kinda sorta trying to make statements about some of the more problematic elements of modern society. Just, you know, with all the intelligence and subtlety of a ricin-laced frying pan to the face. See, for example, Watch_Dogs: “Privacy is dead, but spreading our personal information all about is more dangerous than ever. What ever should we do? SHOOT IT IN THE FACE.” Or how about The Division? “The world is running on all sorts of teetering, unreliable systems and biological pandemics could be a thing maybe and it’s all so complicated so I don’t know I guess SHOOT IT IN THE FACE – but with friends!”

And so on and so on. You get the idea. But then, triple-A is basically our Hollywood blockbuster. I’d very much like for gaming to be better, but I suppose it’s just the way these things go.

Addendum: But There Was Also Some Cool Stuff – I thought on this for a bit (regrettably after publishing) and realized this whole piece came across as rather damning. That’s not entirely fair, though, because E3 did have some great-looking games! Witcher 3, the new Walking Dead mid-season episode, Mirror’s Edge 2, Hotline Miami 2 (which I’ll be writing about very soon), Lords of the Fallen, Mad Max (think Just Cause 2, but in a wasteland), Dark Souls II, and Plants vs Zombies: Garden Warfare were all standouts for me. I certainly came away from this year’s E3 much more optimistic than I did last year. That’s something, at least.


  1. Gap Gen says:

    I kinda liked Ubisoft’s presentation, although it was still mightily generic in places (particularly their big reveal’s CGI trailer, which seemed to be a conspiracy theorist with a stack of Tom Clancy novels muttering to himself). But Aisha Tyler and the antmen did a fine job, in general.

    • TsunamiWombat says:

      Seriously? I like Aisha Tylor and I found her insufferable and boring this year. The Ubisoft dialogue was the worst, and it was the only group that bothered with ham-fisted shit-comedy this year.

  2. DasBlob says:

    SHOOTFACE, then?

    • The Random One says:

      But it’s actually a metaphor for very important things! You wouldn’t understand! It’s too deep!

  3. GameCat says:

    Who won E3 – Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

  4. golem09 says:

    I hate xbone for obvious reasons.
    But the sony conference literally had 0 games I would ever play.
    Some of the Xbone exclusives were pretty awesome on the other hand. As a huge Deadly Premonition fan, D4 alone is almost reason enough to get a drm box in some years.
    So here’s hoping that the xbone blows, and microsoft game studios port all their games to the pc, to get some development costs back.

    • skittles says:

      It is interesting I hated MS, but not necessarily the Xone. I think MS attitude towards the entire debacle has been horrendous to say the least, and not one iota recognising that they are talking to people interested in buying/not buying their product and not braindead lemmings. The stance of the DRM and whatnot is stupid, at least without telling customers exactly why it’s needed, which is not something they have done.

      At the same time at least the Xone is trying to do things a little differently, not much but a bit. The PS4 in that regard was completely braindead, it is essentially a more powerful PS3. Honestly the entire Sony conference up until they decided to start attacking MS directly was drivel, the only highlight was the indie stuff. You could actually hear the boredom of the crowd, particularly when they ‘revealed’ the console. Yet because of the last 5 minutes people seem to think it was the best conference eva or something.

  5. Liudeius says:

    I always feel like a bit of a jerk for thinking about the same when it comes to Nintendo. I mean sure, I do get excited for non-Nintendo sequels, but Nintendo games tend to be so much more samey.

    Can we please stop making a big deal about the “Highly inappropriate jokes” and as said in a previous article “overt rape jokes.”
    It was NOT overt, hell, it wasn’t even intended as a rape joke. They were trying and failing at gamer trash-talking. I’m sure it was entirely scripted, and since the rest of us outside of the media aren’t insane, we didn’t interpret it as Neo-Nazi propaganda.
    At best that was a covert (and accidental) rape joke, but in reality, and the non-sensationalistic world, it was two publicists failing very badly at trying to sound cool.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      Just because gamers are so blasé about rape that it has made it into common trash talk (gender aside) does not mean it isn’t fucking disgusting and people who do it should be told how inappropriate it is.

      • AzzerUK says:

        I suppose gamers shouldn’t say they “OWNED” either then, because that could imply ownership, and ownership of people is slavery, and slavery was/is terrible. God forbid anyone ever use language in any way other than a polite and formal manner, particularly in an entertainment based competitive environment with people they know.

        • Sheng-ji says:

          There aren’t that many people these days who have been a slave and no, if being a slave was something which happened to 1.3 million people every year, I wouldn’t stand in front of a global audience and say “I Owned you”

          • PopeRatzo says:

            Most people I know are slaves.

          • Isair says:

            There are an estimated 10 to 30 million slaves in the world today. Luckily most of them don’t play videogames, so they don’t risk getting offended.

          • Sheng-ji says:

            And what happens to the vast majority of those slaves? Rape. I should point out my statistic is reported rape, for the most underreported crime in the world.

          • Jenks says:

            Rape is more offensive because the people it happens to are louder

          • SuicideKing says:

            ^What the fuck?

          • mouton says:

            That was a bad joke. I hope.

      • Liudeius says:

        I wrote something, but actually, nevermind. Looking at all the replies (here and on the Youtube video), I see those who agree with me write well thought out paragraphs, while those who don’t agree just type baseless strings of words.

        That’s all I need to know, there will always be THOSE people.

        • Ansob says:

          By “those people,” do you mean people like you, who are desperately trying to keep video games as a boys’ club and throw a fit whenever they’re not allowed to offend people and have their way?

          Whether or not it was intended as a rape joke doesn’t excuse the fact that it was made, in public, on-stage, in front of cameras broadcasting it to thousands of people. If it was intended, it’s utterly reprehensible. If it wasn’t, it’s emblematic of rape culture and of the kind of attitude that should be eradicated from video games.

          • cunningmunki says:

            I actually thought he meant people like you and your obviously well thought out paragraphs. Seriously. Now I’m confused and don’t know what to think any more. Please someone tell me what to think!

          • tellrov says:

            Did you by any chance accidentally made a typo while entering your username? I could swear you swapped two letters.

          • Liudeius says:

            There you go again, dropping meaningless catch phrases like “boy’s club” and “rape culture.”
            The fact is, ” just let it happen” is NOT “rape culture” it is stating helplessness. Now true, it could be said in the context of rape, but it is not itself rape.
            Claiming “let it happen” = rape is like claiming “don’t resist” = rape.
            So how about next time the police pull you over for speeding, and tell you not to resist when you try to be difficult, you accuse them of trying to rape you.
            The only “rape culture” is people like you always trying to focus everything everyone ever says or does on rape, when no one in their right mind would think of it that way.

            So now we know that the statement has nothing to do with rape, only with helplessness and inability to control an outcome (which was the case in the scripted bit of gameplay).

            What about the “boy’s club.” Well this is just baseless insulting…
            And this is why I decided not to reply to the last comment, and shouldn’t have replied to this one, because people like you are just extremists with no grasp for reality.
            This was not an act sexism (rape isn’t even gender based, so you already lost the argument there), it was just two PR reps trying and failing at trash talking..

            While real feminists actually promote equality, people like you make a big deal over nothing and throw around stupid catch phrases, ultimately degrading the public’s view of feminism and risking harming the efforts of REAL equal rights activists.

            PS: I’ll make sure I never beat someone in a video game again, I would hate to be accused of rape.

      • vecordae says:

        Your words please me, Sheng-ji. That is exactly the point.

        “It’s just trash talk” is the argument of a man or woman who has never had to suffer it or doesn’t really care about the well-being of someone who suffered it. It says “this sort of experience isn’t really important to me so it shouldn’t be important to anyone else.” That’s pretty much the essence of privilege. There is a feeling that, because one isn’t bothered by it, they should be free to do whatever they feel like, unburdened by other’s feelings or experiences on the issue.

        The thing is, it’s not simply a matter of “This is offensive” and any talk in the direction distracts us from the core of the problem. Threatening rape, even in a ‘playful’ sense, makes one an active participant in a poisonous and dehumanizing culture. You are not a neutral non-participant. You perpetuate it. Saying “shhh it’ll all be over soon” to a stranger, especially a young lady, isn’t a joke. It’s a threat, and it’s a threat that speaks to a very primal fear. If you want to talk to your buddies like that, that’s fine, I suppose, as long as they don’t mind, but you don’t talk to strangers like that. Basic civility.

    • Gap Gen says:

      My position is that enough people who will hear what you say have either been raped or are sensitive to the issue, and there are enough ways to be funny without making jokes about it, so you don’t do it because otherwise you’re an asshole. Granted, these people probably aren’t very good at presentations and might have blurted out something in an effort to be cool, but it really isn’t cool.

      It’s a bit like how children still think that “gay” is an insult, but given that homophobic abuse is real and prevalent if you’re a gay person, then it’s really not cool to use homophobic insults lightly. Again, there are tons of ways to insult people or make jokes, so do those.

      • AzzerUK says:

        Anyone can be offended at anything. So by the argument that we should never make a joke that might be on a subject that people in some places at some times had a bad experience relating to the subject matter, we should never make a joke about anything.

        I mean, I know (not directly/personally) of a guy that swerved to avoid a chicken in the road, crashed, and killed his passenger. So, no more chicken crossing the road jokes either, ok? It might cause upset to people that had bad experiences.

        • All is Well says:

          “My position is that enough people who will hear what you say have either been raped or are sensitive to the issue”

          Clearly Gap Gen isn’t saying that every potentially offensive subject should be avoided, but that those which offend enough people should. So the argument you’re criticizing wasn’t really made by him/her, but rather your own construction. Making up or (deliberatly?) misinterpreting arguments so that you can refute them seems like a poor argumentative tactic, wouldn’t you agree?

          • AzzerUK says:

            I find that highly offensive.

            By the way, does anybody know of a reliable polling website that lists subject matters, and how many people globally are offended by each subject matter? And do we have an agreed upon line, where > X people is a subject that can never be talked about in jest whatsoever?

          • All is Well says:

            See, now you’re addressing the actual argument. Great!
            You should probably ask those questions of Gap Gen, however, since it was he/she who made the argument.

          • AzzerUK says:

            I find well-worded politely typed replies offensive and you’ve done it to me TWICE now. I’m outraged!

          • Sheng-ji says:

            You can tell a joke about anything you want, it’s how you tell that joke. For reference, please compare and contrast Bernard Mannings rape joke (She was offended because I didn’t come back for seconds) vs Jamie Kilstein (Someone threatened to rape me, it was surprisingly liberal of them)

          • Sparkasaurusmex says:

            It’s about knowing your shit.
            Do you want to offend? Do you want to not offend?
            If you know your shit it’s easy enough.
            Learn your shit.

          • Gap Gen says:

            I dunno, there’s no quantifiable metric for this sort of thing. No-one goes “OK, so I’ll only offend 0.2% of the audience with this one, so it’s good to go beep beep I am a robot.” Except Robojoke 4000, but that’s a special case. Obviously the Black Death is something that’s passed out of living memory, whereas homophobic abuse is still prevalent, for example. Plus there’s offence and then there’s offence, plus there’s different levels of insult depending on how seriously you appear to be taking something. Obviously you have a legal right to make a rape joke, it’s just not very nice. I suppose, just try not to hurt people while trying to make them laugh, is all.

        • Ansob says:

          Congratulations on equating rape to chickens! You have reached a new level of scumbaggery.

        • mouton says:

          You know, I consider myself a moral relativist/nihilist.

          But even I recognize that some serious shit is less nice than other shit.

      • Milky1985 says:

        So i guess my mum shouldn’t have told me as a kid to “relax, it’ll be over soon” when i was getting one of my booster shots, or the same said when i had a panic attack while one a ski lift (seriously those things are sodding high up). God forbid a phrase that has common use in other terms be never used again because its also used in reference to something bad.

        You know whats really fucking stupid about this whole thing? I know people who have been raped, i was very very close to one and i’ve seen the effect it has one them, as you can probably guess they don’t want is to be reminded of what happened, she wanted the person punished (he was) and to move on which, occasional nighttime panic attacks aside she did. I learnt that a innocuous phrase or misspoken word wouldn’t cause an issue if you moved on from it quickly as it doesn’t give time to reflect back on the ordeal. The human brain is odd like that, a thought is quickly quashed if you don’t give it the time to fester.

        You know what you are all doing by going on and on and on about the phrase that has multiple meanings. YOU ARE BLOODY WELL CONSTANTLY REMINDED ANYONE WHO HAS EXPERIENCED RAPE OF THE BLOODY ORDEAL, by focusing on the one meaning that people who have been raped probably want to fucking well forget about you might very well be making it worse for those people.

        Its just like the use of the word gay as an insult, its odd how there is a group of friends of mine who aren’t worried or insulted by people calling each other gay as an insult , do you know who they are, MY FRIENDS WHO ARE GAY, a guy i used to work with (gay guy) couldn’t give a fuck what was said.

        It is starting to get to a point where you can’t say anything because you might insult someone, then everyone gets on a high horse despite not experiencing the thing they are angry at, otherwise known as the daily mail effect.

        So if everyone could stop being fucking white knights that would be great, sure call people out if they are really doing/saying something stupid and its obvious what the intention of what they are saying is, that is a good thing. But in this case it was trash talk (imo trash talk should be stopped but thats a matter for another discussion), references that could if YOU read into it have a certain meaning but doubtful that this meaning was the intention.

        • Sheng-ji says:

          I kind of agree with you, but if someone does say something people find offensive, those people should be allowed to say they found it offensive without supposed free speech advocates attempting to censor them.

          And in this case, a hell of a lot of people piped up to say “I found that offensive”. No-one said it wasn’t trash talk, no-one said this guy is a rapist, no-one said he should lose his job, no-one said he should apologise. All anyone said was “I didn’t like that you said that”. Do you not think that kind of feedback is vital for a guy doing PR?

          Also you lose all respect from me for using the term white knight. “Hur dur, you’re sticking up for a rape victim hur hur hur”. (How is that bad again) Maybe I am, or did you ever consider that i was the rape victim, happily sticking up for myself. Did you assume I am a man because my username isn’t princessflowersshineygoodnessgirlsparkles? Perhaps it’s that men shouldn’t complain if they have been raped. Do enlighten me.

          • mouton says:

            I wonder, was there a similar term for white people advocating against slavery of Africans? Black Knight, perhaps?

        • Reapy says:

          Just want to plus 1 you on the common use phrase. That joke is not a rape joke, especially in that context, but I guess people need a reason to be angry or constantly have thoughts of rape on their brain they see it everywhere and get mad.

          I just hate journalists who include it to make points when finding themselves short of good ones, but I guess when tasked with writing x words about a boring press conference you have to take what you can.

          By the way, “take what you can” isnt referencing rape, in case anybody was wondering.

    • lowprices says:

      So it wasn’t a rape joke, it was just a joking allusion to rape that they didn’t predict people would interpret as a rape joke?

      Glad that’s cleared up.

      • TsunamiWombat says:

        No no internet, don’t try to defend yourself, peoples FEELINGS were hurt.

        Just let it happen.

      • Taidan says:

        Thanks for opening my eyes to what constitutes a “Rape Joke” these days.

        I’ll tell my female dentist to stop making “rape jokes” at my expense next time I visit for a check-up.

        • callmeclean says:

          LOL it took me a second to get that, “Open up wide”.
          OT: While sexism seems to be an issue in the development of games (although I think it is mostly a result of publishers trying to appeal to a male audience), I think most of this talk about sexism in gaming culture is ridiculous. There is nothing sexist about thinly veiled booth babes, the organisers of the event are most likely trying to appeal to the male demographics that makes up the large majority (or at least what they think is the large majority) of gamers.

          I hate the fact they have near naked women there because it among other things shows how cheap and shallow E3 is getting, its not about games anymore; if I want to see naked women I will watch porn, and obviously strip clubs and partners are some options that are available for other people. But it is not in any way sexist. Either your attracted to thinly veiled women or you are not, if your not just ignore them and if you want petition for some thinly veiled males to also be featured at E3. There is nothing wrong with sexuality or nudity, and that includes when they are used in marketing and commercial things.

          • Lydia says:

            Using sex to attract attention is as cheap as can be. But contrary to what RPS claims, booth babes aren’t innocent little bunny wabbits. They’re anything but victims. In fact, they’re very lucky to be able to make money by standing around, doing nothing. Other girls have it much harder. And it’s not like booth babes would have become brain surgeons and rocket scientists, if it wasn’t for the disgusting and evil male populace, no ?

          • callmeclean says:

            I’m not sure if your arguing with me or agreeing with me but I agree with all your points and none of my points contradict them. “Using sex to attract attention is as cheap as can be. ” E3 is becoming quite cheap. And like you said getting payed for standing around with a nice looking body would be a really great money earner for those who had nice bodies and are confident enough about their body to do it, which unfortunately I am not, plus I’m an ugly male. It’s like saying prostitutes and strip clubs are sexist, I can’t see a difference, so it makes me think some RPS writers are not really thinking about everything they claim to be sexist.

          • SuicideKing says:

            Oh no not this mostly male demographic audience argument thing again.

            I really wish i could transport makers of all such arguments to a continent devoid of females, for a year. Publishers could sell you folks all the crap they wanted, and maybe let the rest of us focus on making the world a more equal place, and in the process play games that aren’t guided by excessive testosterone.

          • Skabooga says:

            Brenda Romero at the past GDC talked a little bit about the booth babe phenomenon and how she personally reacts to it. In lieu of a summary, I’ll just post a link to the talk, as she is much more cogent and entertaining than I:

            link to gdcvault.com

            Romero’s bit is near the end, so just skip to that part to hear her talk about it for a few minutes.

          • callmeclean says:

            You really shouldn’t assume to know what peoples views are outside of what they have clearly written down. I never said I liked the fact they catered to a male audience, I just said that very much seems to be what they do. And making the world a more equal place is not being offended by what others might like.
            Which leads me onto me response to Brenda Romero…

            I watched the bit about booth babes and pretty girls everywhere and every point she brought up I was thinking “How does anyone link this to sexism?”
            Sure if there are beautiful women everywhere there are going to be a lot of horny men, that’s a perfectly natural and acceptable response. As she said it makes E3 a sexually charged place, which is something we shouldn’t be doing because it turns the whole thing into a metaphorical (and literal) lights show where substance and showing off interesting games doesn’t matter. But that isn’t sexism, men being sexually attracted to sexually women isn’t sexism, today’s media focusing on celebrities and how good their ass and breasts look because hey, it turns out people like sex, isn’t sexism and in the same way trying to use peoples natural love of sex in marketing and making money, or just to make people happy, IS NOT SEXISM.

            Sexism to women is women getting payed less than men just because they are women and any other laws that reduce women below men. I am a male and I admit my view of gaming is heavily male oriented, I often feel jealous of people who beat me at games, and I admit if I know they are female that jealousy is somewhat increased. But I address that inside me and acknowledge that is just a part of my nature, I don’t go out and abuse the women, and I rationally know she got better than me from practice. Humans have problems, we have an underlying nature of violence and jealousy, we want revenge and form prejudices against people as an excuse for that jealousy. That is something we have to work on and not act on.

            We try to impose motivations on the people who do things like promote sexuality when we really have no idea what they are thinking. And that is convicting someone of thought crime. What we need to be doing is turning towards things we like and turning away from things we don’t like or just not notice them, we need to stop this easily offended culture, where people try to persecute things they don’t like and instead try to solve the issues that are actually hurting people in this world, like real sexism such as abuse and inequality. If you don’t want E3 to be about sex, that’s fair enough, if you want to petition the organisers to remove sexual content or at least introduce sexual content that appeals to everyone in the audience, fair enough, but don’t fucking label it sexism.

      • Liudeius says:

        It’s only a rape joke to begin with because gaming news sites want more hits.
        If you want a ton of money, accuse someone in gaming of being a misogynist and you will get five times the readers.

        • Focksbot says:

          “If you want a ton of money, accuse someone in gaming of being a misogynist and you will get five times the readers.”

          At the cost of filling your comments section with the standard of debate Youtube aspires to.

    • cunningmunki says:

      Oh no, not again.

      • riverman says:

        seriously, what is the point of a discussion? neither side will convince the other via this forum, so why even bother? I say this as a dyed in the wool, studied-women’s-studies-in-university-so-I-know-I’m-right kinda guy.

    • SuicideKing says:

      Well, MS distanced itself saying it wasn’t scripted.

      He may have not meant it as a rape joke, in the sense that he may have meant absolutely no harm towards her, but it’s still creepy as fuck.

      Real problem is that rape jokes (or racist jokes, or any other sort of trash talk), are so prevalent in society that it’s an issue. The fact that it’s so normal to say something like that is an issue. And the gaming sub-culture is a part of it.

      What’s the harm in cleaning it up?

      I don’t even make rape jokes when with my male friends, simply because they creep the fuck out of me.

      • callmeclean says:

        “I don’t even make rape jokes when with my male friends, simply because they creep the fuck out of me.”
        Fair enough. However they don’t creep the fuck out of me and a lot of other people. I have not made any rape jokes in my time because I am not a funny person. However I definitely have laughed at things making fun of rape and using it in a comedy context. Yet I definitely don’t think rape is fine, I think it’s an incredibly serious issue seeing as how high rape levels are. And yes, maybe some peoples ability to make jokes about rape connects with the fact they don’t see the problem with rape, and that is an educational issue we need to sort out. However I know I am not one of those people, and most other people who have a different sense of to what is considered “the norm” would see the issue with rape just like me. You have to remember that what is the norm to you is not the norm to everyone, and that you don’t know what is best for others. If you want to clean up your act then do it, but don’t go on some moral crusade trying to infringe on other peoples freedom.

        • The Random One says:

          Then go make rape jokes with your friends, you creepy person, and don’t make them when you are in an auditorium full of people while being recorded to be played worldwide over the internet, because I honestly doubt you have that many friends.

          • callmeclean says:

            “because I honestly doubt you have that many friends.” Because your putting your own sense of humour that you consider “normal” onto everyone else, and you must think there wouldn’t be many people in the world who can find a rape joke funny. However there is a huge amount of people in the world who can laugh at things that people like you would consider wrong, they are not creeps or morally fucked, they just laugh when their sense of humour get’s them to laugh.

            Jimmy car joking about child a man having sex with a baby link to youtube.com (So that would be child molestation right?)
            A hilarious overdub link to youtube.com

            You should realise not everyone is like you, and not to judge their morality and views based simply on what they find funny.

    • blind_boy_grunt says:

      so this seems to come down to either:
      a, it wasn’t a rape joke
      b, free speech
      if a, i guess you are not ok with rape jokes then? But the thing is you are in public on the internet, he was in public when he made that doctor joke. You tell the dirty jokes to your friends because they know you are a decent guy, i don’t, so all i know about you is that you make bad jokes and don’t care about that actual rape victims find it a bit less amusing than you.
      if b, no one said he should be prosecuted, forbidden to talk or anything else that goes with taking away someones freedom of speech, what nathan was doing was saying that it was inapproriate, if you get offended at that, you know what: suck it up, free speech, baby and so forth. What people are doing is raise awareness that he was being a bit much of a douche (also other issues)
      Was all that strawmanning? i’m really not sure. There are just so many people with different opinions about how to defend their right to make rape jokes

    • Focksbot says:

      “Can we please stop making a big deal about the “Highly inappropriate jokes” and as said in a previous article “overt rape jokes.””

      As regular as the tides, it’s always someone who objects to the objection who manages to kick off about it and act properly offended.

      1. Someone does/says something really irresponsible/nasty/shitty.
      2. Lots of people point it out and shake their head.
      3. RAGEGASM from the “People are so oversensitive!” community.

    • cptgone says:

      when i used to play Eve Online, i often witnessed groups of men, most of them hetero, using the rape metaphor as an absurdist, ironic joke. the lack of taste therein only augmented the boyish fun. sometimes, the rape talk was propaganda, intimidation. but i never witnessed it being aimed at women. it always was a mostly men vs. mostly men thing.

      when a man says the same thing to a woman, it is not necessarily sexist. it may well be an absurdist joke, or even a tactic.
      would RPS prefer men to refrain from doing that if their opponent is female? wouldn’t that be… sexist?

  6. Jimbo says:

    “…highly inappropriate jokes at female presenters’ expense”

    Have you even watched that segment the whole way through, Daily Mailson?

    • LordMidas says:

      I didn’t even relate this trash talk to rape. I just thought it was 2 gamers playing a fighting game. That kind of talk is nothing compared to the trash talk during my GRID2 sessions. The language coming out of our mouths is enought to make Vinny Jones cry (probably).

      By we I mean my friends, we don’t do global game chat. We don’t mean anything by it, it’s just game rants.

      I believe that’s what happened at E3. But then you always get those that blow everything out of proportion and read the worst into everything.

      • TsunamiWombat says:

        Clearly you don’t know everything and everyone must be fore-checked with a trigger warning, even if it is completely unrelated to rape, because PEOPLES FEELINGS.

        Seriously. Unless he said “i’ma rape you” then it’s NOT a rape joke. It’s peoples own minds filling in the meaning. And chastising others for the products of your own twisted psyche is the height of ludicrous hypocrisy.

        • Lydia says:

          I’ve come to the conclusion that the RPS staff doesn’t REALLY care about the issue. They’re on autopilot and shout ‘sexism’ whenever and whatever opportunity arises.
          Here’s a possible explanation for their behavior: they’re grown men who play video games for a living, and secretly feel small when comparing themselves to people with “real” jobs. That is silly of course, there’s nothing wrong with being a gaming journalist. But what IS wrong, is using this need to do something more substantial about the world… to preach. They’re doing it badly and they’re oh, so pleased with themselves. It’s the comfortable thing to do. Preach some from the safety of your office and you’re off the hook. Back to owning pixels.

          • Jim Rossignol says:

            Gosh! That told us. I guess we’d better not… write… anything.

            No, wait.

          • Phendron says:

            I don’t know what kind of insane world you live in that puts journalists in stocks for expressing opinions and attempting to spread awareness. North Korea perhaps, not sure they get RPS though.

          • nindustrial says:

            Wow, you’re dumb and you win the award for one of the dumbest things I’ve read all week. Enjoy being an insufferable waste of human space the rest of your life.

        • Sheng-ji says:

          I’m going to rip your head from your shoulders, then I’m going to eat your fathers brains with lima beans, then I’m going to slice your sisters femoral artery open so wide, all her blood will drain from her body, then I’m going to put your brother into a woodchipper, then I’m going to peel all the skin from your mothers body and choke her on it.

          But officer, I didn’t say kill or murder, so it couldn’t have been a death threat. It was just his twisted psyche which interpreted my words that way, it’s his fault, the victim of my act, it was his fault.

          If you don’t get rape from “open wide and just let it happen, it’ll all be over soon” you’re a fucking moron.

          • Deadly Habit says:

            I like how you added “Open wide” to the original quote so it actually seems like a rape joke, next someone will tack on “bitch” or something to try to strengthen their weak case. Christ some people just go out of their way to look for things to be offended about, even if it’s a commonly used phrase that can hold multiple meanings, with one that could possibly hold a negative connotation to someone.

          • Sheng-ji says:

            My apologies, someone talked about “open up wide” as being part of it elsewhere in the thread, I made the fatal mistake of assuming they knew what they were talking about. I was at the conference and it was pretty damn obvious to everyone it was the bend over and take it variety of trash talk – i.e a rape reference.

            The exact quote was “Here we go. Just let it happen. It’ll be over soon”

            Yeah, if you don’t get the rape reference you are a fucking moron.

          • callmeclean says:

            I think that was me saying “LOL it took me a second to get that, “Open up wide”.”
            In response to “I’ll tell my female dentist to stop making “rape jokes” at my expense next time I visit for a check-up.” Not in response to the apparent “rape joke” video.

            “Yeah, if you don’t get the rape reference you are a fucking moron.”
            I probably only associated “just let it happen, it’ll all be over soon” with rape because obviously I went to the video from this article. She was being pounded (oh no! a sexual pun?) by him in the game with attacks I would guess.

          • Sheng-ji says:

            Yeah but none of the videos on the web that I have seen show the whole story, their conversation was loaded with sexual innuendo from start to finish – mostly fine so in context, there is no way you could take that joke as anything but a rape reference – every reference was about sex so if that one wasn’t it would stand out like a sore thumb because it wasn’t – they had a whole bit talking about joysticks and whether she wanted to hold his etc etc etc.

            Also sorry, I may have been too harsh on you with the assumed they knew what they were talking about bit. Its my fault, I’m trying to discuss what someone said with people who weren’t there.

          • Jimbo says:

            Yeah, you wanna add anything else to that misquote?

          • Sheng-ji says:

            Urgh, can’t believe that I unblocked Jimbo just for that… Yes Jimbo, I want to add that I only wish to discuss this further with people who were there, every video I saw has been edited. Wait, I’ve already discussed this with people who were there, and we all agreed, it was a rape joke and we didn’t like it. Now you people who weren’t present can say what you like, but I’m not necessarily going to give your opinion as much weight as I do for those people who were there…

            And re-blocked!

          • Deadly Habit says:

            So since I’m a “fucking moron” for not seeing a rape reference in that phrase specifically in this instance of use does that make you a hypersensitive petulant drama queen?
            For someone who was actually there it’s lovely how you actually misquoted it…. it’s almost like you’re looking for a reason to be offended…

          • Jimbo says:

            ” they had a whole bit talking about joysticks and whether she wanted to hold his etc etc etc.”

            No they fucking didn’t. Are you just going to keep making things up and hope some if it is eventually true?

            edit: And it was broadcast live, genius. It’s probably best you block me now, while you’re only quite far behind.

        • Focksbot says:

          “Seriously. Unless he said “i’ma rape you” then it’s NOT a rape joke.”

          Thanks for enlightening me as to the criteria most of you chaps are using as the basis for your denials.

      • Focksbot says:

        “But then you always get those that blow everything out of proportion and read the worst into everything.”

        Yes, like people who start raging at RPS for one small sentence in a long and thorough review, just because it alludes to something they don’t want to admit happened.

    • AzzerUK says:

      “Just let it happen, it will be over soon.”

      How can you *NOT* think that’s a grossly offensive, sexist joke making light of rape? ESPECIALLY when you throw in the context of a competitive game, played for fun, and being played by two people that know eachother? I mean the context throws the already overtly sexist and offensive statement into OVERDRIVE!

      I remember when one gamer said to me “I’m gunna totally OWN you!” during a game of Supreme Commander – I swear, I almost vomited in distress at just how pro-slavery she was. But then she got distracted and started talking about shoes and handbags and acted like the supporting of slavery was nothing. Awful.

      • Focksbot says:

        “How can you *NOT* think that’s a grossly offensive, sexist joke making light of rape?”

        I debated this back and forth with them last time the “Stop getting offended” crowd decided to get offended.

        As far as I can discern, they’ve just completely missed out on the whole history of the phrase and its association with rape. There was considerable effort to suggest it was the kind of thing you would say in multiple situations, and a reference to a similar (but not really) chain of statements in Saving Private Ryan.

        Basically, they don’t recognise it as an idiom. They’re approaching it as something to break down and decode, like someone who isn’t aware of the phrase “That’s what she said” and claims it could refer to any number of things.

        • Jimbo says:

          Umm, “That’s what she said” can also still be used and interpreted without any hint of innuendo, depending on the context, so… good example? You can be aware of one possible meaning without assuming that it means that every single time it’s used regardless of context.

          “Sarah’s going to meet us there later?”
          “That’s what she said.”
          “HOW FUCKING DARE YOU???”

          God knows why in the context of somebody getting thrashed and about to ‘lose’ (actually ‘throw’, as it turned out) a scripted round of a fighting game you would assume he was alluding to raping her, rather than referring literally to the thing that was actually happening on the gigantic screen.

          Sorry, is it still ok to use ‘thrashed’ like that? I realise I could have possibly used it to refer to a physical assault, in some other entirely different context.

          • nindustrial says:


          • riverman says:

            Really? I mean, did you even read the comment you responded to? Your response was exactly the sort of thing being addressed in the comment you responded to, like a self fulfilling prophecy.

        • Nogo says:

          I always get a good laugh/despaired yelp when someone says “you need to look at the context of what I’m saying to understand whether I’m being offensive or not” before turning around and saying “the historical context of words and phrases mean nothing because I am a being of pure control that operates with high precision and objectivity. Emotions plague your feeble brain, not mine”

          E: Wow, I hadn’t actually read Jimbo’s reply…

  7. Phantom_Renegade says:

    Who won E3? Easy, CDprojekt.

    • RedViv says:

      “You can redeem your price by entering this code to connect it to your Live! account.”

  8. Dowr says:

    No matter what you may say about this years E3, I think we can all agree it was still better than last year.

  9. lowprices says:

    E3 never really does anything other than tacky flash and thunder though. Information about interesting games tends to come out at other times, particularly with indies. Certainly there wasn’t anything that got me excited about the ‘next-gen’.

    Oh? New Need for Speed?
    Oh. Not from Criterion.
    Oh? From a new dev made up of people from Criterion?
    Oh. And people from Black Box, who made the shit Need for Speeds.

    From 0 – excited and back again in 2.3 seconds.

  10. Low Life says:

    Okay, this article is full of traps like this, but still.

    “the last Zelda game anyone actually liked”


    • Sheng-ji says:

      Wind waker???

      • welverin says:

        Yeah, not sure what he was thinking there.

        Twilight Princess was better received by consumers. At least from what I saw, but then that could have just been the highly vocal immature crowd obsessed with the style of graphics.

        • darkChozo says:

          The opinion is pretty split between the two. People like Wind Waker for its art style and exploration and dislike it for its art style and padding, people like Twilight Princess because it’s very N64 Zelda and dislike it because it’s very N64 Zelda.

          • Malibu Stacey says:

            I loved Wind Waker because it was a great game. Same reason I loved Majora’s Mask, Ocarina of Time & A Link to the Past. A good game is a good game regardless of “art direction” or any other such fluff.

            I haven’t played Twilight Princess or Skyward Sword as I’ve never owned a Wii however plenty of friends with similar taste in games to mine recommend them both.

    • Torn says:

      You have to admit Zelda is a pretty tired formula. Still, if you look past that, Zelda games are always fairly enjoyable experiences (well, from SNES onwards…) – you get what it says on the tin: adventure, magic, items that let you access new areas, collectibles, basic crafting, ganon in some form, and an easy game throughout/

      • darkChozo says:

        All things considered, Zelda’s actually pretty good about mixing things up despite having a lot of formulaic elements. The structure of each game is about the same, but there’s always some major gimmick that changes the focus of the game and provides some variety. Look at something like Ocarina of Time vs. Majora’s Mask; they’re basically the same game mechanics-wise (even using the same engine and many of the same assets), but the addition of masks and the whole three days mechanic make them very distinct.

        • RedViv says:

          Aye. Zelda-likes could very well be called a sub-genre of action-adventures, seeing how it’s a very, very definitive kind of structure in the background, nevertheless enabling a wide variety of ways to make it feel rather different in most of the games.

        • Koozer says:

          This applies to every Nintendo IP I think. I have recently come to realise that at least some people who say Nintendo never do anything new only see the adverts and boxes for Metroid: Fusion, Metroid: Prime, Metroid: The New One and cry ‘recycled!’, never discovering each plays entirely differently but with the same window dressing.

      • Viroso says:

        And then Demon’s Souls comes out, then Dark Souls and then Dark Souls 2, everyone’s super excited over it specially because it keeps the same formula. Between Ocarina of Time and Skyward Sword there have been 5 games and more variation than in the Souls series it seems.

        I’m not saying we should all hate on Dark Souls, but that most of us have very little standing to be critical of LoZ games for repeating the formula. But that’s the cool thing to do.

      • Malibu Stacey says:

        You have to admit Zelda is a pretty tired formula.

        So tired that modern games like Darksiders copy it verbatim? and even ‘modern classics’ like Beyond Good & Evil and the Legacy of Kain series?

    • Nihil says:

      Indeed. WAT.

      Twilight Princess and Skyward Sword are (overall) both astonishingly well designed and interesting games. Both have their faults, but both were also highly praised by critics and fans alike and both sold millions of units. The puzzles and dungeons alone are worth the price of entry in any Zelda game. I honestly rate all three just as highly as each other.

      Yes Zelda follows a very formulaic template, and a lot of people think it does nothing new as a result. But the fact that your first item will be a slingshot and your first temple will be ‘Forest’ isn’t a bad thing, the whole point is that it’s interesting to see what the take on those elements each time around is.

  11. Jumwa says:

    Personally I consider E3 to be a big console affair. I just wait for my PC gamer news to come as it always does: at a trickle throughout the year whenever the developers/publishers care to give it, because of this thing called the internets that allows direct marketing like that.

    Nintendo’s announcements actually got me quite excited. I know everyone loves to poke fun at Nintendo for trotting out familiar franchises, but they do plenty of new and interesting ideas all the time. They’re always iterating and refining their work, and the level of polish and the amount of fun I get from their games tends to be top notch.

    In a way, their method of slapping a familiar coat of paint on new ideas can be quite ingenious at times. Or vice versa, putting a new coat of paint on an old brand. Gives them the security to invest big in new things knowing that the branding is there to push it to success.

    I tend to cycle back and forth between the freedom of the PC gaming world and the set play experiences of well-refined 3DS/WiiU games. Together it handles all my gaming craves.

    My only hope with it going forward is that with Nintendo’s new indie-friendly policy that the WiiU becomes a quirky little haven for unique indie titles, right along Nintendo’s bizarre stable.

    • darkChozo says:

      Unabashed fanboyism on my part aside, I feel like Nintendo offers the most to those of us who already have access to a gaming PC (weird assumption to make, I know). Most of what the PS3/Xbox can do is duplicated on the PC aside from a couple of really nice PS3 exclusives, while Nintendo’s consoles have all those tasty first-party exclusives and gimmicky controllers and some of the best games for local multiplayer. It’s probably telling when Nintendo’s pseudo-E3 presentation was entirely exclusives as compared to the Sony/Xbox’s long list of kinda-sorta-probably-not-on-PC-too-honest exclusives.

      Also Bayonetta 2.

      • Jumwa says:

        You summed up my thoughts and feelings well. And never underestimate the power of nostalgia.

        There’s a handful of games exclusively on PS3 I wouldn’t mind playing, but it doesn’t even seem worth the hassle to find a space for the console when I have so many PC games of a similar style I’ve been waiting to play but haven’t made the time for yet.

  12. Didden says:

    The reason so many games are shooters, are that Humans like killing. This is a hidden, but sad but truth that we try to hide in our society. Most soldiers are ashamed to admit it, but for the most part, wars are fun for them, as is killing. Games just reflect this hidden aspect of human nature. One example of a WW2 veteran talking about this – the documentary itself is about how we tried to hide this fact and omit it from the social memory:

    • TsunamiWombat says:

      Which is one of the reasons videogames are such an important pressure relief valve for society. Instead of having massive gladiatorial arena’s we shoot pixel men in the face with pixel guns for pixel reasons.

      • Didden says:

        Some research would suggest the opposite. And certainly the US Army saw games as an ideal recruitment tool. The film for Ender’s game is out later this year :)

        • TsunamiWombat says:

          “Some research” says this, other “some research” says the opposite of that “some research”. I won’t comment on which is politically and financially motivated bullshit because both of those “researches” probably are.

          STATISTICS says violent crime and murder is decreasing, per capita, across the entire united states.

          Please also recall Enders Game takes place in a future militaristic dysotopia where the one world military government controls how many children you can have.

          • Didden says:

            It does, but the point of the novel, was to highlight some of these issues we secretly hide about mass murder being okay, if its a game etc. Interestingly, like Starship Troopers, its part of the recommended reading at West Point, because of the issues it explores. The fact that a large percentage of the US Population are quite keen to keep their guns, and the fact that guns like the AR-15 increased in sales after several children were shot, does not suggest to me that the US is falling out of love with guns, or our hidden secret emotions about killing each other, anytime soon.

          • Grygus says:

            Not just at West Point; Ender’s Game is recommended reading for all US military NCOs and officers. This is primarily because of its exploration of the nature of leadership and esprit de corps, however, not its stance on warfare itself. After all, men and women joining an all-volunteer military have already made their value judgments on warfare, and while those stances may range anywhere from resigned to enthusiastic, they’ve literally bet their lives on those stances and tend to be relatively unshakable in those viewpoints, usually only shifted by quite a bit of aging or actually experiencing warfare.

    • Lanfranc says:

      Fallacy: False equivalence. Shooting someone in the face in an FPS is nowhere near the same thing as killing a person in real life. Liking the one thing does not mean you llke the other.

      • Sian says:

        Exactly. I love playing videogames of most kinds, and some of the ones I enjoy conatin lots of violence and shooting. In real life, I abhor violence. I haven’t been involved in killing people, but I have had the odd fistfight, what with growing up with two brothers and being the outsider at school. I’ve never enjoyed fighting and now I’m pretty much a pacifist.

        I know this is anecdotal, but it’s an example for people existing who like virtual violence but hate real-life fighting, so painting the whole of humanity with a broad brush like that is just inaccurate. Yes, there are soldiers out there who enjoy what they do, but there are also those who are traumatised by it – not only when their pals die or they lose an arm or a leg, but also when they are forced to kill.

    • RedViv says:

      I’m not entirely sure if you know the same kind of humans I know. They are mostly loving life and wanting others to live too, not bloodthirsty tribal animals that WANT TO KILL. It’s sort of agreed upon that this sociality is what separates the former from the latter even.
      Some of them enjoy a form of entertainment that represents tests of reaction and coordination through shooting virtual representations of humans and other creatures, which is entirely disconnected from an urge to kill. As far as healthy individuals are concerned, anyway.

      • MarcP says:

        Reading your usual comments, I get the feeling you’d love to stick a knife in my neck if you could, or for that matter round up anyone like me and send us to die in space.

        As a pressure valve for violent feelings, I find killing pixel dudes beats being aggressive with other real people on the Internet, seeing as nobody is hurt with the first choice.

        • RedViv says:

          Nah. Though I’d hand out some kind of really horribly bad ale to the one person that somehow tracked an address of mine down last month, and sent me some hate mail. Such dedication to hate must be rewarded with a sick stomach.
          As for the rest, I’d rather disassemble points and ridicule people who act silly. Feels better that way, and no bodily harm is done.

      • Grygus says:

        People are, however, naturally competitive, and killing is the ultimate resolution. So while I do agree with you that saying people are hardwired to love killing each other is misguided, I do think there is an uncomfortable truth in the idea that killing is appealing to us as a form of winning, which we are hardwired to love. I’m saying that a game in which you knock all of your opponents unconscious would be just as popular, but a game in which your opponents cannot ever be dealt with (say, a game about posting on a forum) would not be seen as satisfying.

        Chess is a prime example of this; the game calls it capturing, but there is essentially no difference between capture and death within the structure of the game. It doesn’t matter how your opponents are eliminated, but we do want elimination in some form. Killing is merely a reassuringly permanent and easy to understand form of this.

        Most games with killing are also using it to contextualize death, which is something we wrestle with naturally.

        • RedViv says:

          Conflict, yes. Challenging activity, yes. Adrenaline, yes. Dissolving instead of solving problems seen as easier, mostly, as that’s related to an easier way to get that little happy hormone boost. But I don’t think that this can be by any means summed up as some general “hardwired” (naturalistic fallacy there, I’d say) fascination with death, or even a desire to inflict it upon others.

    • Nogo says:

      Seems weird to say we like murder when really it seems we’re bigger fans of being in the right place at the right time with the right tool to make the right difference.

  13. Ansob says:

    Something you forgot to mention about the PS4, Nathan, and which is actually pretty important: Sony really downplayed this, but PS+ will now be needed to play online multiplayer on the PS4, just like XBL Gold is on Xbox. It’s a really shitty change, especially since they’ve tried not to talk about it.

    • welverin says:

      That seemed to fly under just about everyone’s radar. Though honestly, I’m not sure how big a deal it is. Their muliplayer service has been crap for seven years and I think this is just Sony conceding that fact.

    • Mctittles says:

      Any way you look at it the new Playstation or XBOX is a worse deal than the current one. Either additional DRM or an additional monthly fee.

      Also this:
      link to thebestpageintheuniverse.net

      • Smion says:

        While I sorta agree with what the guy is saying, I still want to punch his fucking face so fucking much.

    • The Random One says:

      Pretty amazed that the PS4 wins by becoming worse so it’s as bad as the 360 was. At least indies can self-publish on it, right? Right? Right?

  14. Silas Greaves says:

    “What ever should we do? SHOOT IT IN THE FACE.” Or how about The Division? “The world is running on all sorts of teetering, unreliable systems and biological pandemics could be a thing maybe and it’s all so complicated so I don’t know I guess SHOOT IT IN THE FACE – but with friends!””

    Woah, slow down there fella. Nothin’ wrong with a bit of face shootin’!

  15. TehK says:

    So everyone’s a winner!
    ♥♥♥ RPS – bringing all gamers together! ♥♥♥

  16. serioussgtstu says:

    One part of E3 which really made me quite uncomfortable was that many of the games on show have implemented DRM without anyone having noticed, and I haven’t seen anyone talking about it. Several games which could and probably should be single player games with optional co op are now always online. Ubisoft especially have been doing this very successfully with The Division and The Crew, but then there’s also Titan fall which has it’s campaign integrated into the multiplayer and most disappointingly Bungie’s game Destiny.

    Is this worth being concerned about? They’re all fairly obviously not MMO’s and yet there’s still that always online requirement, but all people having been saying is how impressive they are. Nathan kind of touched on it with “mingleplayer” (brilliant), but I really think it goes much deeper than that.

    • welverin says:

      That’s not DRM, at least not on the part of Titanfall and Destiny, that’s the companies acknowledging the fact that multiplayer is the main draw and designing the games from the ground up for it and forgoing single player. These games are by studios and people responsible for a couple of the most popular online shooters of the last decade and their just taking the next step in that direction, sure Brink did it first, but anyway.

      Of course, do we even know definitively that there is no offline mode at all or are you just assuming there isn’t because they only talked about the online aspects? People have been referring to The Division as an MMO, so I don’t know how you can consider an always online requirement to that DRM.

      • serioussgtstu says:

        Yes, you’re correct I am making the assumption some these games will be always online, but I did so because from the developers perspective it just makes sense for them to make them online; and the way that this console generation is going, it wouldn’t surprise me in the least if it was. I do consider their methods to be DRM, they’re just being far smarter about it now because it’s no longer a tacked-on feature, it’s a part of the game. For example I look at Destiny and I think that this is essentially Borderlands 2 with an internet connection; to me this reeks of Simcity all over again, and that worries me.

        I don’t accept that multiplayer is now the main draw for gaming, in some respects it’s on the decline because far fewer games are including it as a feature compared to five or ten years ago. Of coarse making a game which could otherwise be a perfectly serviceable single player experience have an online requirement is a form of DRM; it was true for Simcity, and it’s true now. Otherwise, I haven’t played Brink so I can’t comment on that, but can you appreciate where my concern is coming from?

    • Sian says:

      The site seems to have swallowed my last reply, so just a short recap: How can you think The Divide is going to be anything but an MMO? The video made it pretty clear in the end that there were players running around everywhere.

      • serioussgtstu says:

        I assume you mean the Division. It’s not an MMO in the sense that it is not being marketed as an MMO, but for all intents and purposes it is one.

        • Sian says:

          Yes, The Division, of course. Sorry, the heat’s getting to me – it’s 33 °C outside and not much cooler in here.

          But wasn’t your complaint basically that these games were being marketed as MMOs, but didn’t actually have to be? I mean, you were going on about how it was an example of unnecessary always-online DRM clad in the guise of an MMO when it wasn’t actually part of the (very broad) genre.

          • serioussgtstu says:

            Enjoy that weather while you can!

            My problem is that for the most part these games don’t need to be MMO’s, as the multiplayer components are largely restricted to co op, and since they are not being marketed as MMO’s it is easy to understand that we are missing the fact that they may only be available online. This is a problem and no one really seems to be taking notice. Saying it is or isn’t an MMO is a pointless arbitrary distinction, the real problem is that they may be always online.

  17. Metalhead9806 says:

    I was worried this E3 because i knew PC was gaining groun on MS and Sony and i knew to fight back they would toss a ton of money at developers and spin things to the point of every one of them ignoring PC versions of each game…

    For the most part this happened… Titanfall, Destiny, The Crew, Final Fantasy XV, MGS V, GTA V… hell… even the Witcher 3 came off as a console exclusive to the uninformed and that is exactly what Sony and MS wanted…Sony made them believe PC games were Sony exclusives, MS bascially labeled the PC as a casual social gaming machine.

    PC is an open platform, we have no one to lock titles down for us, no one to defend us… exclusives like Outlast, Elder Scrolls Online, PS2, Warframe & Blacklight are being snatched up… Sony is acting like they have all the indies on lock … All of this to an uninformed gamer looks like the end of the PC platform as we know it…

    I’ve been reading a ton of gaming forums and no one is talking about PC next gen. Thankfully i’m a informed gamer. I know Titanfall will be on PC, Same as the Crew, outlast, elder scrolls, transistor, quantum, FF15, MGS5 and a ton of other games MS and Sony claim to have as “exclusive”.

    I just wished we had someone at E3 defending us… someone like Valve or Blizzard… something that can show off PC versions of everything and talk about exclusives. Because that would really drive a stake through the heart of Sony and MS… because how they handled E3 was shady imo…

  18. DiamondDog says:


    What do you want them to do, Nathan? Oh I suppose you’d want people tickled to death, right? A tickle mechanic? Pull out a feather in the middle of combat, take off their shoes and socks and tickle them into submission? Is that what you want, Nathan?

    Because I think that’d be pretty fucking cool.

  19. ukpanik says:

    Amusing that the “XBone’s” at E3 were hidden PC’s:
    link to techpowerup.com

  20. MarcP says:

    “We’re Discussing Important Societal Issues… But Only When They’re Overblown And Dumb”

    It’s been a long time due, but I’m glad you can finally see that, RPS.

  21. wheeelbarrow says:

    Did you get to see the Oculus Rift there? That sounds like the most noteworthy thing at E3 this time. A simple demo thrown together in a few weeks and mostly just reusing assets from an ancient MMO managed to win PC Gamer’s best of show award just because it was on the Rift (and not even on the new, higher res version). That’s sounding a lot more next-gen than a couple of slightly improved almost-PCs.

  22. Nick says:

    Ubisoft won E3 by having Jerry Cantrell.

  23. Brun says:

    Oh, and don’t forget that remake of the last Zelda game anyone actually liked.

    Like hell! Twilight Princess was quite popular.

    Also, I would keep a very close eye on Destiny. It has the potential to be the Goldeneye and/or Halo 2 of MMOs (i.e. it could easily become the first mainstream console MMO).

  24. Megakoresh says:

    Judging from your recent style, RPS, you REALLY hate gaming industry. So why are you still around with gaming journalism?
    I mean instead of going out of your way to pick out problems which don’t exist so you can smear game mechanics or call on “Sexism”, why wouldn’t you make a blog about posh watches or something? Or wild animals? Those are also topics with news.

    I mean all that stuff you do with preaching about unexisting sexism (that is only spreading on the female side, because obviously “In the balls” jokes are in completely different context as tits jokes and the like) or faulting games for having gameplay and constantly “Hoping games can be better”… All that just makes you look dumb. Why do you want to appear dumb?

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      Apparently the ‘journalism’ part of “Games Journalism” doesn’t exist in your world.

      • Megakoresh says:

        Does “journalism” mean desperately trying to find problems that aren’t there and continuously complaining about something which isn’t an issue? If that’s the case, then no, I guess it doesn’t.

    • Nick says:

      I like the way your closing salvo applies to the rest of your own post. Consider that.

  25. nimzy says:

    I’ll tell you who didn’t win E3: The gamer. The person who actually buys these games. It’s a bit unrealistic to expect better treatment at E3, though — there’s a reason PAX was established, to escape the publisher-developer-press echo chamber.

  26. derbefrier says:

    I enjoyed this years E3. The beginning of a new console generation is always fun to watch. I also have to be honest. Watching playstations conference made me want a ps4. Mostly cause of final fantasy 15 (previously known as ff vs. 13). Though finding out its now required to subscribe to psn+ sucks its no surprise as xbox live is a much better service because of the small sub. I imagine I will have a ps4 at some point but I will wait untill the machine is actually released for a while to see how it actually plays

  27. mollemannen says:

    sony’s strategy was to do absolutely nothing new and when that is worthy of applause you know the game industry is in bad shape.

  28. sinister agent says:

    It’s just a shame that in this era, building a machine for people – not bipedal marketing surveys in $10,000 suits – is worthy of raucous praise. Shouldn’t that be, you know, the baseline? This should not be how you earn a gold star.

    Oh god, this. It’s like a two-man con, and people are so scared of the guy threatening to stab them twice, they’re pathetically grateful to the guy who’s only going to stab them once. Microsoft really asked for the kicking they got here, but that they were able to suggest all this shit at all without immediately being booted out is depressing as hell.

    I’m getting more and more convinced that the companies who “win” the next round of consoles will be the ones who don’t bother making a new one at all.

  29. DanMan says:

    We already have a new “visceral”. It’s called “emotional”.

  30. xsikal says:

    For me, the real winner of E3 wasn’t a game company at all… it was Kickstarter (and, by proxy, the PC).

    After watching all the hoopla about the new consoles and their sizzle reels of upcoming explosions, I realized I wasn’t particularly excited about any of the games on display. Or the consoles themselves, which appear to be closed system A with unpopular restrictions and closed system B with less unpopular restrictions. Instead, I’m looking forward to all the games I’ve kickstarted over the past year; Shadowrun Returns (out in July), Wasteland 2, Project: Eternity, Torment, Massive Chalice, The Banner Saga, and yes, even Sir, you are being hunted.

    After a convention where massive publishers tried to tell us all what we wanted and why their widget was the best at delivering that content they were telling us we wanted, it was nice to retreat back to the PC, look at the games *I* decided I wanted and chose to help fund, and realize the next year+ of gaming should be very enjoyable indeed.

  31. AvistTorch says:

    Yeah, Nintendo’s conference didn’t excite me. New Smash Bros coming sometime in the future, but we all already knew that. Super Mario 3D World and Zelda Rehash looked phoned-in. Pikmin 3, but that’s on the Wii U and I don’t plan to get one.

    Anyhoo, much looking forward to the Hotline Miami 2 stuff.

  32. Caiman says:

    I feel the gaming fatigue exhibited in this article too. It’s not that some of those AAA games didn’t look pretty good and probably fun to play, it’s just that I feel that AAA is now synonymous with total lack of imagination. It undervalues us. Gamers will only buy our existing IP, or our new IP if it features guns / zombies / post-apoc / modern warfare / cars. But I’m not giving gaming up, not a chance, because the indie dev community is fucking awesome and keeps throwing some great ideas and games at us, at a rate that I can hardly keep up with. I’d be quite happy to never buy another EA / Microsoft / Ubisoft / Activision game ever again at this rate, they’re just not featuring at all in my game menu. The last AAA game I bought was Skyrim, but I’ve bought about 40 games since then, including some absolute classics that would never feature in any non-indie awards show because they’re not publisher backed. But I feel like I’m back in the glory years of 8- and 16- bit gaming once more.