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E3 is now over and for the most part it was pretty – okay. xxxBoxOnexxx managed to reveal some sequels to well know franchises but also gave us some new ip: Sea of Thieves, Anthem and A way out. Sony gave us an update of all the games it showed us  2 years ago. For the first time in about 4 years Nintendo actually put some effort in and gave us what we wanted.

Not too bad really.

Now we just have to wait for everything to show up. Unfortunately this is where it all falls down. Beyond Good and Evil 2, is rumoured to have only just started development and games like God of War 4 are still another year away. Problem with this approach is people get bored of waiting, or generally loose interest in games which are still a good 2-5 years away.

Some games manage to buck this trend and take ages to be released but then people loose their shit when it finally comes out. For example: Breath of the Wild. Some games release never ending gameplay trailer until it looks dated or someones already re-hashed the ideas into a game thats available now. Others choose to release early and go with the episode approach like Hitman. For some people this is fine, but for me I like to buy the complete product not be drip fed episodes then made to wait for the next one, which could turn out to be crap.

The best announcement for a game, I can remember was the announcement of Fallout 4, a game that rode the hype train and then massively under-delivered. But people rode that hype train, they didn’t have chance to think much about it. From announcement to release was about 4 months.

Most of the time dragging something out is worse than not announcing anything at all. If Sony took the approach of only announcing games that where at maximum a year away people would loose their shit more than a game thats like 5 years away.

But then if all you have is a selection of games 3-4 years away the last thing you want to do is a Nintendo where you go on stage and cry into the camera.

Difficult.

 

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EGX Game Expo: How far we have come.

As I walked into the arena at EGX I wasn’t expecting to get blown away by anything in particular. Having played video games for over half my life it hard for me to get excited about anything any more (The last game I got truly excited about was Witcher 3). Indeed its difficult to get excited as most games companies prefer to take the safe road and invest in tried and tested IP as opposed to investing into something truly new and unique. Its said that everything ever  written can be boiled down into seven plots, something which can easily be extended to game-play.

However despite the negativity something happened at EGX I didn’t quite expect. I finally got Excited about gaming again.

Gaming has always had an issue with Hardware, allot of bottleneck on games happened for the prolonged period in which the Xbox 360 and PS3 just wouldn’t fuck off and die (they still haven’t), being a PC gamer things have been pretty dry and thanks to marketing, and just generally how things are PC ports became the new norm. Anything released on a console would get wrapped up and released onto a PC, however because hardware is released every 5 mins on a PC it quickly out grew the consoles, but had to suffer with games designed for the console from 5 years ago.

Then the big announcement, ‘Next Gen’ (I assume next gen will be ‘Next Next Gen’ ?), new shinny consoles doing all sorts of new and shiny things – and no games.

But things seem to be warming up, and it all seems to have kicked off with – CD Projekt Red releasing Witcher 3, which despite my opinion was still a massive achievement. It looked visually stunning, it felt like a truly immersive next gen game. The type of gaming which we always wanted but never quite got. I recently picked up MGS5, another game that’s pushing the barriers and giving us something which visually looks amazing.

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I never quite realized this however until I went to EGX and got to see some of the up and coming games hitting the market later this year and early next year.

What truly sold it to me was the tech demo for the new Hitman game coming out March 2016. I have had very little interest in Hitman, I still have very little interest in Hitman. It’s more about what it represents, the level design, the game-play everything about it shouted “Next Gen”.

I doubt will see any true disruption in the gaming industry until they sort out all the 4D virtual reality stuff which is in the pipes from Valve and Facebook – I’m just happy that things have finally taken a step in the right direction.

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