By Nolan Patrick Smith
Photographs by Jason T. Smith
High Desert Daily
(Victor Valley)—Last time, we talked about the console wars, but the focus this time is on the actual games that you want to play. Some big announcements were made, some surprises in tow. Here is our Best of E3 2013.
Best New Shooter: Destiny
Bungie, the company that brought the world the iconic Halo series for Microsoft, has now moved on to something new, something bigger. Destiny is their next big shooter, and from what we saw at E3, it deserves all of the hype it’s getting. Lush backdrops, an array of firepower at your disposal, and the next standout characters that all will be talking about. After watching a theater displayed live gameplay session, I am convinced that this game will set the bar for the next generation: it just might be its destiny.
Best Fighting Game: Killer Instinct
When a game has been off the radar for over a decade, it’s no surprise that it’s return takes the top spot for its genre. The once Nintendo exclusive is now exclusive to Microsoft with a debut on the new X-Box One. With only three characters on display, the game played, looked and felt like the classic Killer Instinct. Now, we just need Chief Thunder, T.J. Combo and Orchid and we’re good to go!
Best Sequel: Call of Duty-Ghosts
I will be the first to admit: I am not a huge fan of the Call of Duty franchise. I have only purchased one title from the vast library (Black Ops), but other than that it never really piqued my interested. Ghosts has changed that. With a story following two brothers in a war torn San Diego, along with their canine companion, this game looks so amazing, so different than what I am used to seeing from Activision’s big guns, this will be a must buy for me.
Best RPG: Black Gold
With Elder Scrolls Online and Diablo III both having impressive showings, the game that really grabbed my attention was Black Gold from Snail Games. An RPG that combines the worlds of fantasy and Steampunk, I had a chance to play this at E3, and it was pretty amazing. War beasts, steampunk robots of destruction: this game was just plain fun and different. Be on the lookout for this one, I know I will be.
Best Family Game: Skylanders Swap-Force
The Skylanders series has been a huge hit with kids and adults alike, and it looks like the newest entry is going to please all as well. The main focus of Swap-Force is the ability to dismantle and combine the Skylanders figures, which allows for a mix and match of abilities in the game. Immensely fun, this should be another hit for the franchise.
Best Music Based Game: Rocksmith 2014
Ever wanted to learn how to play the guitar? Well, now you can, right at home. The newest installment in the Rocksmith franchise once again allows for any electric guitar to plugged into the system for this game. Ubisoft stressed that this time, someone with no guitar experience whatsoever will be able to pick up a guitar and learn. Unlike most of the games shown, this one is for the current generation of systems as it hits stores this October.
Best Zombie Game: Dead Rising 3
I know, zombie games aren’t a genre, but with all the zombie games on display at E3, it ought to be. The standout of the pack comes in the form of Dead Rising 3, which is actually the fourth game in Capcom’s zombie sandbox series. Now an X-Box One exclusive, players will take the reigns of the new protagonist, with the game set this time in California. The combo weapons are back, the humor is back, and so are the fans as we wait for more.
Surprise of the Year: Tie between Star Wars Battlefront and Kingdom Hearts III
Many know some of what to expect from E3 on a yearly basis: more sequels to blockbuster franchises, more games trying to copy the model of those blockbuster franchises, and so on. But every now and then we get thrown a surprise, and this year we got two major ones. First, the Star Wars sequel everyone has been hoping for, Battlefront, was announced with a small teaser trailer from EA and DICE. That small teaser is all fans needed, as now it’s official: Battlefront is back.
The other huge surprise comes from Square Enix as they announced that Kingdom Hearts III is in production. The third title in the popular franchise that partners Square Enix characters with those from the Disney universe, Kingdom Hearts III has been rumored and wished for by fans for years. Now, it looks like their dreams will be coming true after all.
Best Showing at E3: Activision
It shouldn’t be too huge of a surprise that Activision took the top spot. With Destiny, Call of Duty-Ghosts, Skylanders, and more, the company wowed fans with a more than impressive showing. Though EA, Bethesda, Ubisoft, and others had an outstanding offering this year, Activision takes the crown for E3 2013.
There you have it: the best the E3 Expo had to offer in my opinion. Now, we just have to wait and see how things turn out once these games are finally released.