E3 Video: Madden NFL 13

This clip from EA talks up the Infinity Engine running underneath the hood of the new Madden NFL 13 and how it’s going to change the experience. Things like balance, tripping over the legs of other players, and how it affects handling how well you can break tackles during and after getting tagged. It will be interesting to see just how long time franchise fans will like what the engine brings to the table when it is arrives August 28th.

E3 Video: Medal of Honor – Warfighter

EA’s selling point for their revived Medal of Honor series is that it’s set a lot closer to the modern world than “those other” shooters. That means taking you into hot spots like Somalia’s pirate infested coast to pursue your objectives and dealing with the grit that comes with that kind of work. And that’s also thanks to the Frostbyte 2 engine running underneath the hood, the same engine running EA’s Battlefield 3.

That’s where this gameplay reveal from EA’s press event goes, so be warned – it does get violent.

E3 Video: Watch Dogs

The nearly ten minute debut of Watch Dogs, a new IP from Ubisoft that plays on information as a weapon…and then some. It’s like a mash up of The Net, Sneakers, a little Cyberpunk, and Eagle Eye blended in gently with Splinter Cell and Grand Theft Auto. So it’s all kind of awesome.

Also, it gets pretty brutal in both language and bodily harm, so be warned. The UK rating stamp isn’t just there for show.

Star Wars: The Old Republic beta weekend

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The Inquisitor looked at me expectantly, hoping to see what nugget of information I would pry loose from the victim strapped to the table. The man coolly went about his business while my prey writhed in fear of what was to come. But after a few words of calm and a promise of help, his will melted before this unexpected kindness. And I kept my word, seeing that he would leave Korriban’s tombs and its Academy politic far behind him.

I was Sith. Sith, with a heart of compassion for those that deserved it…and an unrelenting storm to those that did not.

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BF3 Beta impressions (Xbox 360)

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Playing the BF3 beta was a little confusing. The game is due out in a few weeks, so putting it into beta this close to release seemed bizarre.

It covers only one multiplayer map, Metro, which takes place in a subway tunnel in France along with a little above-ground action for plenty of close quarters shooting. It’s also objective based meaning players will be switching roles between defense and offense. It also means that it’s a map with no vehicles which can be a bit disappointing to some.

Technically, beta tests are handled a few months in advance of finalizing the code for release so that if anything critical crops up, it can be fixed before hitting retail. At least that’s how it’s ideally supposed to go. Though in today’s world of “0-day” patches and broadband speeds, that probably doesn’t mean a hell of a lot.

Likely, the “beta” for BF3 was to test multiplayer stress on the network to better prepare for when it goes prime time on October 25th. On that count, it seems to be doing okay even with the occasional  128-player hack floating around in PC Land.

I also hope that some of the other issues won’t show up in the final game such as prone clipping, or falling through the map and getting stuck leaving suicide the only escape. I was killed on one map by someone trapped this way because they were able to shoot me from below the objective I was attacking.

One thing that stuck with me was how familiar it felt. Coming off of Bad Company 2, BF3′s beta felt like I was heading back for more of the same with a new set of maps. That’s not entirely a bad thing, especially if you couldn’t get enough of the game. And I’ll admit that I had some fun while shooting through Metro’s wrecked venue.

The demo also cuts loose with a large number of unlocks and, from what I could see, no level ceiling, so if anything, it’s a nice, free multiplayer shooter. Some players have also really taken to it – I’ve seen a few leveled into their twenties and thirties already though I doubt any of that will carry over into the full game.

If I weren’t a fan of the series before I doubt this would have convinced me as much as the trailers had worked so well to, but I’m sure that the full game – with actual vehicles – will be a lot more exciting when everything comes together near the end of this month.

BF3 MP Trailer from Gamescom

Gamescom, Europe’s version of E3 over in Germany, is having its pre-convention presser avalanche before Wednesday’s official opening. EA had theirs and one of the things that came out from it was this trailer showing off “64-player vehicle warfare” including jets. The “64-player” thing is only for PCs, though console players should still have a relatively solid 24-player count to play with.

Might need to upgrade my PC for this one when it comes out October 25th this year.


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Quick Review: Battlefield Play4Free Beta (PC)

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So what’s not to like about EA’s free FPS? It’s cheap, disposable 32-player fun that’s good for a quick bite of action, though it won’t replace your copy of Bad Company or Modern Warfare 2.

It’ll be supported through microtransactions which means that you’ll need to pony up real-time cash to buy things like extra soldier slots (you start out with only two freebies) and permanent weapons outside of the generic stock that classes start with. It’s also still a Beta which means glitches like the one where I had lost an entire level’s worth of experience after being dumped from the game. I hope they fix that.

If you want to live free, that’s okay, too – experience for levels and training points for skills are still  earned. Vehicles cost nothing, other than having the skill to actually use them – especially in the air – and the maps offer plenty of places to use for cover, snipe, or face to face time with heavy armor. All in all, a fun fix for FPS junkies that doesn’t require anything more than a browser and a decent internet connection.

New trailer for “The Secret World” spells out what you can expect

Funcom has released a new trailer for their upcoming MMORPG, “The Secret World”. If you’re wondering whether it’s something you want to play other than World of Warcraft, that depends on whether you want to fight for the fate of the modern day world as a member of one of three secret societies who know the truth of what goes bump in the night. From New York City to Seoul, South Korea, players will get to shoot it out or use the kind of magic Harry Potter can only dream about to fight this secret war.

I’ve been keeping an eye on this one for awhile and it’s been shrouded in, well, “secrecy” since the start, but it looks like Funcom is getting ready to show off more than just a few fancy trailers with a little taste of the gameplay.

For more info, check out the press release right after the jump below.


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Review: Bulletstorm (X360)

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Bulletstorm has a story, but you won’t be paying much attention to it or its testosterone-washed dialogue as you kick, slide, and shoot the naughty bits of your enemies – all in a drive to score points that can be used to upgrade your arsenal of destruction. It’s a wonderland of smashing, bashing, and lashing that doesn’t quite make it so much an FPS as a carnival sideshow gallery of kicking bags for adults.
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