E3 2016 Day 2 Recap: Sony Makes Its Mark While EA Plays

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Despite the fact the E3 show floor still wasn’t open, our second day at E3 2016 was still plenty busy, and we kicked things off with EA Play.  Set in an area next door to the LA Convention Center, EA set up shop inside the NOVO.  Within the multi-floored staged space, we got a chance to experience four of the games EA was excited for us to partake in:

Titan 

Titanfall 2

Placed high up on a rooftop terrace of the NOVO, EA built a giant tropical area filled with unknown alien animal sounds, memorabilia from the game, and a giant waterfall.  In the middle of this environment was a dome filled with consoles and PCs for gamers to try out their sequel.  Just before the demo began, we were treated to a video explaining all the new weapons and Titans we would be playing with.  These new Titans would include Ion, a Titan who uses electric energy to power all its weapons and the Scorch Titan that uses fire abilities.  Once we were debriefed we were thrust into the battle.

After two games and every character type played, between us.  Eric and I agreed that Titanfall 2 felt like a really balanced game.  The Titans didn’t feel as clunky as the prequel version and the each soldier played smooth.  Usually, there are certain character types that are better than the other, but I didn’t get that feel in Titanfall 2.  Each one brings a strength to the battle, none of them felt like they were bringing the team down.  My one problem with it was the game we were playing made no sense.  We were killing our opponents and yet the other team was getting all the points.  I think it was just a bug being a game still in development but that was my biggest issue with the game.  Overall, the gameplay is solid and I’m excited to see it finally come to PS4, now including a story mode!

BF 1 

Battlefield I

Once again, we were invited to watch a film explaining all the nuances of the game.  Including, the new weaponry, classes (Medic, etc.), vehicles (planes, tanks), environments, and the dreaded Airship (Zeppelin)!  They even explained to us that the game would tend to alter its environment, during gameplay.  It could be sunny in Northern France and then, all of the sudden, a thick fog could come down and hinder sight lines.  Moreover, they revealed that the entire world was built with Frostbite’s destructive engine.  Everything from buildings to even environments could get decimated.

Once the tutorial was over, it was finally time to take part in Battlefield 1.  I started off inside a tank, as a gunner.  I wasn’t able to do much as the driver was going in directions that were not in the middle of the fray.  So instead, I decided to test out the Frostbite engine.  Sure enough, I making swiss cheese out the Northern French homes.  

Later, my driver was killed so I tried taking over the reigns but there was a glitch that wouldn’t let me actually move the tank.  Instead, I jumped out and entered the battle by foot.  After a few firefights, I was killed and sent back up to the world map to pick my next respawn point.  That’s when I decided to try out the plane.  I immediately regretted my decision, and so did my gunner I’m sure.  The alpha didn’t have a switch to change the game controls from being inverted.  So, I’m in the air flying around like a drunkard without a pilot’s license.  Things got worse when a thick fog fell upon the battlefield.  Note to all gamers, do NOT fly through a dense fog if you can’t use inverted motions.  Then, I got the brilliant idea to pause the game to try and find a way to take off the inverted function.  While I didn’t find it, my plane did find the side of a home and was immediately destroyed.  Once again, that Frostbite engine did it’s job.  Not only were me and my gunner decimated but so was the house!

Afterward, the airship was summoned and I got to try that out for size.  This vehicle is massive and a ton of fun.  It’s not practical in the fog but it really can obliterate everything.  It uses about 5 different gunner outposts and the Captain’s area where you can pilot the ship.  I found myself holding the wheel at one point, looking at the enemy planes muttering, “Good, our first catch of the day.”.  Then the battle in the air began.  My gunners fought valiantly against the enemy planes.  However, the were just too fast.  I got a couple of good shots in but, ultimately, the airship was destroyed and I went down with the ship in a fiery blaze that took out many homes and soldiers.  In the end, my team and I lost but the gameplay was a lot of fun.

Madden

Sports

The next section we experienced is what I’m most known for, Sports games.  FIFA 17 and Madden NFL 17 were located on a terrace with green turf surrounding us.  We started with FIFA 17 and got a chance to play the new story mode.  The game takes on a whole new difficulty as you are locked in as newcomer Alex Hunter, who is just trying to make his mark on Manchester United.  It was interesting to see the behind the scenes locker room experience and post game interview where you decide what Alex says.  In essence, you actually decide what Alex’s career will be like.  

However, when you actually play the game is when it gets rough.  In a normal FIFA game, players can use every member of your team.  In story mode it’s just Hunter.  So you have to constantly get into the right position for you to get the ball.  Once you have it, you are judged by what you do.  If you tackle badly that’s marks against you.  If you shoot poorly, that’s more marks against Hunter.  It really does take FIFA to a whole new level.  In terms of graphics, FIFA 17 is unmatched by any other sports video game.  The players and maneuvers are much crisper than last year’s.  At times, it felt like an actual live match.

After FIFA 17, we directed our attention to Madden NFL 17.  First, Eric and I decided to play each other.  It was tough since I was playing All-Madden and he played Pro.  The game really leans toward the player using the lesser level.  So, instead I decided to do some solo testing and boy did I find out a TON!  

First off, the new commentary is extremely well done.  Charles and Brandon really make the game their own.  I also enjoyed all the new entrances and commercials that they’ve added.  However, the work they’ve done the most on is Franchise.  Madden NFL 17 will now let players truly customize their coaches with new faces, ethnicities, size, and apparel.  They’ve also given players the freedom to make their own goals for the season.  

Development is also much easier as players can now focus on player development by putting them as one of their three “Focus” players so they earn extra XP.  Game Prep has been taken to a whole new level as the game will now give notes on your weekly opponent and how best to prepare for it with the ability to actually select plays to practice.  Finally, probably the coolest thing they’ve added is the Practice Squad.  No more are the days of drafting young players with potential but cutting them because they can’t make the 53-man roster!  Now, you can simply put them on the practice squad and elevate them later.

Despite the miscues from EA’s Press Conference, they do actually have some good content coming out, over the next few months.  Fans of all four games should be excited for what’s to come.

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Sony’s Conference

After all the gaming, we took a break and got back into Press Conference mode, as Sony was starting to begin.  We traveled to the iconic Shrine Auditorium, which is a Opera House hidden within downtown LA.  After partaking in the dinner, Sony provided, it was time for us to take our seats.  Luckily, Eric and I were able to claim seats in the second row!  In front of us was a giant orchestra pit which would eventually be filled with the Detroit Symphony and led by renowned Composer Bear McCreary.  They set the tone for the entire show and it didn’t disappoint. 

Sony blew out the competition by releasing trailer after trailer and keeping the presentations to a minimum.  They started off with the new God of War but instead of it just being a trailer, we got gameplay!   That set the audience off with cheers and shrieks all around.  

God of War PS4

We also got a footage from new titles like Detroit: Become Human, which is a game where you play as an Android detective and your choices dictate what happens in the game.  Resident Evil 7 which looked like a whole new series and it brought the fear.  Days Gone, a cross between Sons of Anarchy meets World War Z.  That one looks tremendous.  However, it would be the reveal of Hideo Kojima and his new studio’s next game, Death Standing, that would win the night.  It stars Norman Reedus in what looks to be a brutally, enthralling game by the gaming mastermind behind the Metal Gear series.

It was an incredible event that won’t be soon forgotten.  I firmly believe that Sony changed the Press Conference game by just showing new titles.  They didn’t waste their time on games that we’ll never hear about again.  Nor, did they do puff pieces on what they’re working on.  They let the games do all the talking.  Mark my words, that will be a common theme in next year’s E3 conferences.

Day 3 will include Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and all kinds of other gameplay so keep it here on Cinelinx.com for your exclusive look inside E3 2016!

Let us know if there is a game you’d like us to dive into and know more about!  Eric and I are here and can make that possible!