Posts Tagged ‘E3 2012’

CD Projekt On Game Of Thrones, Sex’s Place In Gaming


Yesterday, I mind-melded with CD Projekt CEO and owner of the most victorious last name ever, Marcin Iwinski, on all things Cyberpunk. Also, DRM. However, with those topics covered and safely underneath fluffy wordblankets of information, the conversation weaved its way toward the next natural stop. I’m speaking, of course, of Westeros. Read on for Iwinski’s thoughts concerning parallels between The Witcher and Game of Thrones, the male-driven nature of geek culture, and where E3’s utterly archaic reliance on booth babes and titillation fits into that.  

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Kim Swift On Quantum Conundrum’s Past, Present, Future

It’s the final day of E3. Most attendees have died exhausted and alone, with only XXXL shirts and fliers for NOS energy drinks as bartering chips in their bid to enter the pearly gates of the great beyond. I shuffle into a tiny booth cubicle – technically for an appointment, but mostly in vain hope of discovering some hidden developer pillow mountain. Inside, I instead find Quantum Conundrum mastermind Kim Swift… excitedly chatting with Square Enix PR about Left 4 Dead, energized as someone who just woke up from being frozen in a block of ice for thousands of years.

It was pretty surprising at the time – given that she was coming off not only a grueling E3 but also an entire development cycle. But then, I suppose there’s a sort of giddy limit-defying elation in finally crossing the finish line. And, as Swift went on to tell me, she got to do it her way – even with a titan as large as Square Enix looming over the production. Which is kind of incredible, when you think about it. So then, how did all of this come about?

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4A Talks Multiplayer Metro, PC-Specific Features

On Friday, I picked Metro: Last Light communication lead Huw Beynon’s brain about wising up to the fact that players don’t want “dumbed down” games and, er, wrote an ode to a gas mask. It’s incredibly promising things like these that set Metro apart, and yet – this time around – it’s opting to hop aboard the multiplayer train, which also contains, oh, you know, the entire gaming industry. But why? And how will this affect 4A’s laser-sighted focus on single-player? Meanwhile, in the last leg of this last part of this Last Light interview: games journalists howling like giant monstrosities while 4A pretended to shoot them. Seriously. It’s all after the break.

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4A On Making Metro Smarter – Not Dumbing It Down

Metro 2033 had its fair share of rough edges. Shooting was clunky, some systems felt overly complex, and others were so under-explained that many players didn’t even know they existed. Even so, a lot of love obviously went into the construction of its bombed-to-the-brink-of-extinction post-apocalyptic Russia. In smoothing out rough edges, however, many other game series have opted to lop off entire aspects of what made them so great – generally in the nebulous name of “accessibility.”

4A Games, though, doesn’t believe that’s necessary. In fact, according to communications lead Huw Beynon, Last Light‘s adding – not subtracting. So then, how exactly will that work? And, if this is something that’s in such high demand, why aren’t more developers trying it? Read on for answers to those questions and many more.

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Why Metro: Last Light’s Best Character Is A Gas Mask

When I walked into the E3 demo room for Metro 2033 sequel Last Light, I was immediately presented with a small, thin military-green bag. Inside it, I found an actual, factual gas mask – sturdy yet pliable, and reeking of fresh-off-the-assembly-line rubber. It might seem like a curious object to take home from a gaming convention, but given the events that unfolded during Last Light’s demo, I can’t think of anything more fitting. So what follows is the story of a videogame. And also a gas mask.

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The Two Deaths That Defined Tomb Raider

'Can't we talk about this,' asks the deer's facial expression. Unfortunately, deer cannot talk.

Tomb Raider‘s demo made me realize something: it’d be a stretch to call what we do in games killing. I mean, yeah, we’re probably the only medium that can (and frequently does) tout multiple physics systems specifically capable of calculating the way bullet-perforated brain bits dance majestically through the air. But really, all we’re doing is knocking down hyper-detailed action figures. We pull the trigger or aim the bow or bury the shank in a fertile bed of neckflesh, and they go down. Then we move on to the next faceless thug, rinse our knives, and repeat.

The Tomb Raider scene I sat in on during E3 really struck me because it didn’t let Lara cut people (or animals) down and then continue gleefully on her way. Death is messy and scary and awful. While the Nathan Drakes and Persian Princes of the world slay 300 people and then sweep corpses under a rug with a dumb joke, Lara – intentionally or not – sticks around for her victims’ final moments. I guess what I’m saying is, I sympathized with an irredeemable, cold-blooded murderer and, er, some random deer. They died scared and spittle-soaked and alone, and I really didn’t feel good about that.

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Interview: Molyneux In The Moment, Pt 2

So then, cubes. Admittedly, they’ve been closely associated with games before, but during E3, Peter Molyneux told us about his ambitious plan to think outside the box by putting a mysterious item inside a box. As is typically the case with the extremely excitable mind behind Populous, Black & White, and Fable, it all sounds gleefully insane, and it showed in his blindingly sunny demeanor. Today, though, we discuss darker, more sinister things. Social games, for instance, and indie developers’ place at the kiddie table during shows like E3. OK, fine, we also discuss more cubes.

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