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E3 2014: Ubisoft Press Conference Reaction

Posted on Monday, June 9 @ 21:18:17 PST by blake_peterson
I'm not wanting to start off cramping anyone's style, butUbisoftneeds to hire some people who have actually played online games to write thedialoguefor the people pretending to play their online games in their trailers. First,The Divisionat the Microsoft conference and then (the totally awesome-looking)Rainbow Six: Siegefeatured the most canned and fakedialoguebetween gamers ever. I don't doubt that the gameplay was real, but c'mon guys, for realism's sake, have your guys start off their encounter with everyone waiting for "Dave" to finish eating a Hot Pocket or someone thanking their significant other for getting them something to drink.

That said,Ubisoft'spresser was probably the best one so far (with the Sony yet to start). It got right into the trailer forFar Cry 4, which was similar to the reveal of Far Cry 3, focusing on the villain and his strange and overly intimate relationship with the lead character. It looked like an in-gamecutscene, so there's not terribly much to report, except that the dude looked pretty bad, in the best sort of way. The villain Pagan Min (presumed to be Troy Baker) gave me a great David Bowie as totalitarian psychopath vibe.

Aisha Tyler was suitably spunky as the host, delivering quips with thedevsequally in English and French, which gave the whole thing a way more casual feel that was nice. IfThe Divisiontrailer was a nice cinematic montage, andThe Crewprompted questions in the room of "Would you really want to drive that far in a game?", they still moved things along, whileShape UpandJust Dance 2015clearly aimed at thegamificationof exercise. AndJust Dance's use of thecellphoneas a controller will help make it more accessible, butnota better game—you could still get by just moving the controller without moving the rest of your body in the directions necessary; it demands a specific voluntary participation in the style and motion.

Valiant Hearts, built on the same engine asRaymanLegends, looks like a suitably heartbreaking tale of World War I woes. It took the bulk of its trailer to realize that it told the side-scrolling tale of a dog, whose wartime companions are killed over the course of the war while he survives. Looks like a tearjerker with eminently gorgeous animation.



The real standouts, though, wereAssassin's Creed UnityandRainbow Six: Siege.Unitywas, the bulk of us watching the conference together agreed, really the first game we'd gotten a look at that really said, "This IsNext-Gen." The crowds, the level of detail, the lighting, the total lack of any noticeable texture or character drop-in or out; as well as the characters' incredible fluidity of motion in theparkouraction; with no hesitation in flow between one action or another. Beyond that, simply the level of detail in character faces and animation was astounding.



The big surprise wasSiege, presumably a restructuring ofRainbow Six: Patriots. The five-on-five gameplay especiallyhighlighted what appeared to be completely destructible environments (if you break too much stuff, does the house fall in on you, ending the mission in failure for both teams?). What impressed me the most was the way that it seemed to rattle the nerves, how through the tattered remains of a wall, where a player (or players) from another team could be was strikinglynebulous. Sure, you had your little drone to give you eyes-on, but the image wasn't perfectly clear, and no one path to victory or defeat seemed apparent; as if each assault by one team or the other warranted the same kind of apprehension of not knowing when and how an attack might come, and that's not something I've seen established so well visibly in a tactical shooter.
Tags:   E3, Ubisoft
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