Joey’s Eurogamer Roundup
If you are a regular follower of TheGameJar you will know that I didn’t ever make it to Gamescom in Germany due to an unfortunate passport incident. From Gamescom the trepid explorers who actually got there provided you with some delightful tastes of some of the biggest games due out in the near and distant future. It tasted delicious, I’m sure you will agree, but after that feast you need a little something sweeter. As Eurogamer Expo meant I didn’t need a passport to attend I managed to play nearly everything that we have already written about on the site already as well as a couple of new games.
What I would like you to do now is imagine me as a Michelin star chef and what is about to come is a sample of desserts following on from the Gamescom feast – a little taster of most of the games I played at Eurogamer which will be accompanied by a quote that I uttered when walking away from playing them. Enjoy.
“Simply stunning, I just cannot wait to see more.”
Grid 2 was the first time that this racing behemoth had been available to play in public. It’s been a long wait for Grid fans but those who got hands-on certainly were not disappointed. There were two different tracks on display; a point to point race through California and a two lap street circuit. The point to point race was controlled by a steering wheel and oh my did that take some getting used to. So much effort has gone into making each car feel unique that trying to control the Mustang speeding through the winding open road was like trying to tame a wild beast, thrashing left and right until you finally felt like you understood each other.
The most important thing to point out about Grid 2 is that it is still in pre-alpha and it looked absolutely stunning. I’m sure some of the bells and whistles may be removed for the final game such as real time reflections on the bonnet but as a first showing Grid blew people away. I had the chance to sit down and interview the Associate Producer and the Senior Game Designer and you can find out what they had to say here.
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance
“Better than it has any right to be, but still a lot of work to be done.”
Just typing Revengeance makes me feel a little bit sick. I had my worries when I sat down to play MGR; some were upheld, while others were blown away. The cut scenes and story aspects are perfect Metal Gear; little elements of humour, over the top story and ridiculous looking characters that play to stereotypes. Gameplay itself is fast and furious and pretty difficult. Enemies will come at you from all directions and the cameras certainly don’t help you figure out where people are. The precision cutting mode is a Jekyll and Hyde feature, which certainly makes you feel powerful slicing through enemies anyway you want, chopping them up into little pieces, but when you enter this mode the camera is all over the place, it is just far too sensitive and most of the time I ended up looking at the sky when trying to turn a soldier into thirty pieces – not ideal but hopefully feedback can be heard and this issue changed before launch next year.
“Remember the cheat where you could blow Lara Croft up in the early games? You couldn’t imagine yourself doing that to this Lara Croft.”
This was certainly one of my favourite games that I got hands-on with at the show. I was never a fan of the early Tomb Raiders, but this one has me salivating like a Pomeranian dog in Tokyo Jungle. The fact that Lara now looks and comes across as a normal person, who isn’t a super bad-ass woman with a pair of huge udders and skimpy shorts; she now has a real purpose and I’m interested to follow her story. The short amount I played was solid, looked lovely, borrowed a lot from the Uncharted series (which certainly isn’t a bad thing) and I also got to shoot a deer with a bow and arrow…good times.
God of War: Ascension – Multiplayer
“It’s actually pretty decent but will anyone be playing a month after release? I doubt it.”
You know the overly brutal hack and slash style of gameplay in God of War? Yeah, they have actually managed to capture that in the multiplayer of the upcoming game. Four v four team deathmatch sees you earning “favour” to please the gods in the shape of orbs that appear after killing someone, stabbing a huge beast in the eye with a spear as well as a manner of other ways. First to reach a certain amount of favour wins – a nice little twist so it isn’t just ‘first to 25 kills’. It certainly looks good, handles more than competently and for those hardcore GoW fans I think it will be a staple in their gaming diets for a while. The rest of us however will probably revert back to FPS of choice.
Lost Planet 3
“Looks pretty, handles terribly.”
I managed about ten minutes of Lost Planet 2 before turning it off, and I’ve never played the first game even though it was supposed to be decent. Lost Planet 3 sees you back on an ice planet where you are mining for energy and big things with glowy weak spots attack you. In the demo you pilot a mining mech that you can use to destroy some smaller enemies as well as take down the big boss, but it handles very slow and sluggish and just gets a bit dull after the initial excitement wears off. The third-person shooting element is like any other in the genre except the enemies are even bigger bullet sponges and aiming feels so stiff – hopefully a little tweak there will address that issue but there doesn’t seem to be anything new being brought to the table here.
“So that’s the game Ryan has been banging on about? Really?”
So Ryan loved Dishonored when he played it at Gamescom, but as usual (on the DBR podcast at least) I’m going to have to disagree with him. Dishonored was pretty terrible. Dropped in with no clue on what to do, with powers that I had no idea how to use and first person melee combat… I was never going to enjoy the demo. It looks OK I suppose, but to hear so many people saying how amazing it is I was just thoroughly disappointed.
I have been told that if you spend a long time with the game it becomes awesome, so if I ever see a copy for £1.99 in Tesco’s or something I might pick it up.
“Kids are going to love it – this could be something special.”
You remember Wonderbook, that interactive Harry Potter looking book thing that stunk up the middle of Sony’s E3 press conference? I’ll tell you this, it’s bloody good. Yes, the Playstation Eye doesn’t really help it too much because of the poor tech specs, but playing Wonderbook was a joy. I was casting fire spells, levitation spells and then attacking some rats and wizards. Wonderbook clearly isn’t aimed at me but if you are a parent to a young child do yourself a favour when this comes out – pick it up. You will get some peace and quiet around the house for a while. It may have been laughed out of the building at E3 but this was one of those pleasant surprises when I had a go at Eurogamer.
Far Cry 3
“Looks very pretty and handles well but there needs to be a strong reason for me to want to move forward in the story and not just piss about in a sandbox and get bored.”
I don’t want to say too much, Ed wrote a nice preview the other day so go and read that. But what I will say; Far Cry 3 looks great and I just hope that it’s not the kind of game where you get five hours in and find yourself getting bored of doing side missions. You know people say “it’s always fun to blow stuff up”? They lie, it does get boring and that’s my only concern with Far Cry 3.
“Donate me a PC that can run this and I will love you forever.”
Lee and Ryan saw it at Gamescom and loved it, and I saw it at Eurogamer and felt the same. It is such a shame I don’t have anything that I can play the game on as I’m sure Sim City will be a gem I miss out on. It was the same demo as the guys played at Gamescom and even though I’ve never really played a Sim City before it’s all pretty straight forward and I was running my own little town with relative ease. It will be simple to play for beginners and for veterans there will be so much more they can get from it. It’s going to be something special.
“As close to perfection as it gets.”
OK so it’s only a demo of one level, maybe even half a level but I have fallen well and truly for Unfinished Swan. Ever since it’s announcement I have wanted to see this game in action. This was the only title that I felt truly gutted at missing due to the passport fiasco and I am so, so happy that I have finally been able to play it. Spraying black paint around a blank white scene and watching the world appear before your eyes is a thing of beauty. It is something pretty original and Sony should be commended on giving the guys behind Unfinished Swan a chance. There’s not too much more I can say except that I want to see more, because as beautiful as it is I’m sure the same format for five or six hours could become a bit tiresome no matter how great it looks, so it will be interesting to see how it is kept fresh. If you want to know what happens in the demo read Josh’s preview from Gamescom.
Well, that is it that, everything I played at Eurogamer that is worth mentioning. If you read it all, congratulations, if you didn’t… well then you missed out, sucker. Let me know out of the games above which ones you are most looking forward to or if there anything there that really disappointed you like Dishonored did for me?