E3 fast approaches, and you know what that means: New game announcements and all the gaming news you can handle are headed our way. It also means it's time to rewind to 2017, when the three console makers made a plethora of promises during last year's E3 festivities. Did they keep them? Let's find out. First up: Microsoft.
Tagged With e3 2017
From time to time, I'll make a stunt out of my interviews with video game professionals. I'll do this when they're bunched together for a week-long event such as Game Developers Conference or the huge E3 show in Los Angeles. I'll convince every executive and game designer I speak to at one of these things to ask a question for the next person I'm talking to. Or I'll cajole a parade of all-star game creators to play Tic-Tac-Toe. In June, I asked a who's who of developers, some of them rivals, to help draw one sketch.
The two biggest names in gaming are gearing up for a heated head-to-head battle in the lead-up to Christmas.
In one corner is Microsoft with the 4K-enabled Xbox One X. That goes up against Sony's PlayStation 4 Pro which launched last year, and while Sony has undoubtedly come out on top in terms of number of consoles sold so far this hardware generation, Microsoft will soon have the most powerful machine.
I did not get to play Super Mario Odyssey at E3 2017. However, my colleagues did, and I got to study 20 minutes of delicious footage they captured. I spent too much time frame-by-frame studying the glorious dust cloud effects when Mario butt-stomps. I also noticed an overt "Glengarry Glen Ross" reference in the New Donk City travel brochure. Of course, it's to the Alec Baldwin part. All of "Glengarry Glen Ross" is mind-bendingly quotable; why do people only ever quote the Alec Baldwin part? Oh well.
At E3, I got to play multiple rounds of Call of Duty: WWII's multiplayer. While the core experience feels similar to previous games, a focus on presentation and a new story-based mode made things much more interesting than recent entries in the series.
Clifford "Cliffy B" Bleszinski once described video game guns' profound appeal with this simple sentiment: "Reach out and touch someone... with your gun." Since the early 1990s, guns have pretty much been the telephone of choice for video game characters: They speak to their rivals with bangs, booms and headshots.
It's the first day of E3. I'm walking the show floor -- or more accurately, oozing across it, slug-like, followed by a trail of my own sweat. I'm shoulder-to-shoulder with swathes of people. Across the way, crowds of people whoop and holler, each of them hoping to win swag they can stuff in their floor-length swag bags. 15,000 new people are in attendance this year.
Every couple of Fridays, we have Jackbox games on the chill-out TV in the middle of our office. Anyone that wants to play brings their phone to tap answers in Quiplash and maybe draw one or two things in Bidiots. It's simple and fun, for an hour or maybe two. It brings people together.
Sony's PlayLink does exactly that, but with more depth -- like serious, long games like Hidden Agenda (from the team that made Until Dawn) as well as party games like Knowledge is Power and That's You! If you've got a PS4 and some friends or family or maybe strangers to play with, it's a tempting proposition.
The newest God of War hopes to give Kratos some much-needed depth by focusing on character dynamics and new mechanics. Also new: Kratos' massive, manly beard. I sat down with game director Cory Barlog to ask some hard-hitting questions about Kratos' new look.
Tekken 7 player Bronson Tran lived up to his nickname "the Mouth of NorCal" this past Wednesday night local time when he received and rejected the MVP prize at E3's Twitch Esports Arena invitational. Fans nominated the MVP via Twitter hashtag, and the winner was supposed to get a T-Mobile phone. Except, as Bronson explained while standing on T-Mobile's stage, he uses AT&T and he'd rather not switch his data plan. Instead, Bronson plans to give his prize to a randomly selected Twitter fan.