E3 game previews: PC edition

Times-Herald Editorial Staff
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A few games for my main gaming device of choice – the PC – were previewed at E3 that make me both excited and apprehensive.

Samantha Emann

By Samantha Emann, special to the Times-Herald

I am also going to break all the rules and preview a console game on a PC list because Lord of the Rings. And that is all the reason one needs once one admits to themselves that anything to do with that world, you will buy faster than you can quote the movies. 

Dragon Age: Inquisition

Dragon Age: Inquisition first caught my attention for its similarities to one of my go-to games, Skyrim. Though I do not think the landscapes and detail in this title can beat that of Skyrim, I think this game has it beat in variety and diversity of landscape if not graphical detail.

Like the landscape, the new Dragon Age instalment has more colour and variety in the type of character and, incidentally, in dragons.  There is an aspect to the combat that really interests me and that is your ability to affect how enemies react and attack you based on where and how you hit them.  Where other fantasy games give you pretty colours and moves as far as the attacks you can inflict, not many actually take into account those on the receiving end and that is a realism I can appreciate in a fantasy RPG.

I think the combat will also end up hindering those that button mash, but there is rhythm to the combat engine I appreciate.

The characters look like they can be empathized with, loved, or hated. The story looks as though it has a depth to back that up, if lacking in originality. Having not played any Dragon Age titles, this is one that will have me playing previous instalments based on my interest in the upcoming game. 

The Sims 4

I am comfortable enough wearing my nerd pants to say I am super excited about the newest instalment in the game that never ends. 

So much content! So many gameplay options! So much customization! So much precious daylight, and moonlight wasted!

I know I am buying into another EA money sink, but I am giving up on my dignity with this one. This game is World of Warcraft for gamers who prefer spending hours playing [insert creator deity here]. This is a game that I have almost no doubt I will love and I am only worried about the amount of money and time I will end up sinking into it.

Battlecry

This game is advertised as having 300 influences and it is apparent by watching the gameplay trailers. Being as graphics obsessed as I am, I will say that the landscape and animation does not have the depth I was expecting BUT the chaotic, quick combat quickly diverts your attention and keeps it.

This is a multiplayer game I would liken, in terms of combat strategy and emphasis on teamwork, to League of Legends. For that reason I think this game would be very much enhanced by a headset, which for me means I need a team that understands my habit for unintentionally verbally wounding my opponents.

I find the costumes and landscape design unremarkable and the weapons to be at odds with both of those elements. 

Star Wars Battlefront

this particular reboot strikes me as one made by fans for fans. But being a huge Star Wars fan myself, I am skeptical if it will live up to the high standards of my fellow Star Wars lovers. It has a big reputation to live up to as far as film and story content as well as the myriad of Star Wars games that have come before it.

In case you haven’t noticed, I harp on graphics a lot, but the snippets of this game I have seen have made me think it will not disappoint in that respect. The game makers have been tight-lipped about releasing much as far as gameplay, but they have released just enough to pique my curiosity and leave me wanting more. 

My worry is that it may be trying to do too many things in one game and it may become a quantity over quality problem.  Further, being a remake, it will have to work that much harder to be truly innovative.

Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor

Last but certainly not least the game preview I wanted to write about bad enough I put it on the wrong list.  If Star Wars Battlefront has big shoes to fill this one, in my eyes, has an entire wardrobe.  There are LOTR-inspired games I love (LOTRO) and ones I have hated (the games released alongside the films),  so I am anxious to see what the makers will be able to do with a game based on Tolkien’s lesser-read content. 

I like the idea of fighting in enemy territory and the exploration of Sauron as a character, both of which are purported to be major components of a very complicated and detailed story and cast. 

Again the combat looks smooth and varied as some is direct and some is more abstract and strategic (eg. overseeing the raising of an army of Orcs as opposed to just directly killing them).  That will also add replay value to this game, which should be a major draw for consumers as well. 

I hope you have enjoyed my take on some of the upcoming games of 2014/2015.

I am interested in hearing from other gamers on what games you think might come out on top of this year’s crop. As always, drop me a line with any questions or comments or any reviews you may want me to write or rant about. Until next time, happy gaming!

Organizations: Star Wars, League of Legends

Geographic location: Middle Earth

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