GBAtemp E3 2018 Live Show Floor Coverage: Day 2 - Anime Games and Indies

Discussion in 'GBAtemp & Scene News' started by Chary, Jun 16, 2018.


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    Intro

    Onward onto day 2! Once more, GBAtemp is reporting the events of E3 from the show floor itself. As the first hectic day of E3 wrapped up, the second day was upon us, and it was time to move from the West Hall to the larger and more intimidating South Hall. We had more appointments lined up today, such as 505 Games, Bandai Namco, and more. From Ace Combat, to Soul Calibur VI, to Bloodstained, we had a bunch of great titles to try out. Read on to see how it went!

    The first destination of the day was Bethesda, and failing that, Ubisoft. Either line had amazing items given out if you got through the line and played the demo. Of course, me and every other of the 70,000 E3 attendees had that same idea, so the line swept around the building, with no clear end in sight. For the lucky few who did manage to brave that mess, they would get either a whole "Vault-Tec Party Pack", which consisted of some Nuka Cola Quantum, a party hat, a party tweeter, and a Vault Boy mask, celebrating Fallout 76, or you could get a wearable metal Spartan helmet from Assassin's Creed: Odyssey. With media-only in the line, it was a projected 4 hour wait. Once regulars got in, the lines became over capacity, and no more were allowed to enter either booth.

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    I decided to scope out the rest of the show floor, taking pictures and watching the crowds. Media and journalists focused on smaller games, one where they could get interviews with developer teams, while regular non-media focused on large AAA games--Call of Duty IIII and Destiny 2: Forsaken were nearly empty until non-media showed up. Then the queue became a madhouse of people wanting to try both shooters. Smash Bros. and Pokemon were still intensely packed. Even if you wanted to try those games, you better have gotten there at the very first moment, else the line was closed. Regardless, people were still crowded and huddled around the booth, trying to get any glimpse they could of Nintendo games. Excitedly, I walked past, knowing that tomorrow, we'd be given a "VIP" press tour of the whole booth.

    Jump Force


    For now, however, we had an appointment with Bandai Namco. The publisher had a strong presence at E3 this year; multiple fighting games in the form of My Hero Academia: One's Justice, Dragon Ball FighterZ for Switch, the newly announced Jump Force, and their major flagship of the show--SoulCalibur VI. Other games like Code Vein, and Divinity Original Sin 2 Definitive were there too, while Tales of Vesperia: Definitive Edition, Ace Combat, and Naruto to Boruto: Shinobi Striker were displayed on a giant screen above their booth, despite the last three not having a playable demo.

    Jump Force was the first game both of us got to try. As far as the actual press conference reveal went, it was an interesting concept. I've always been a fan of Dragon Ball, and crossover fighters, despite their lack of depth, I tend to enjoy. I was more than willing to give it a try. The demo started right at a character selection screen, and it was there that I noticed that things weren't going to end well. Merely scrolling through characters caused the game to lag a bit in the menu. I ignored it, thinking it was just a random occurrence. When the actual game loaded, it was fine initially, until anything moved on screen. The framerate was fluctuating wildly, and as far as gameplay went, everything felt "off". When you punched an enemy, it was more like you were punching the air in front of them, not the character themselves. Then, after connecting with a strong punch, there was what I assume was a "slow motion" effect to make attacks more dramatic, but it only served to make attacks feel delayed and awkward. You also play in teams of three characters, but you all share the same health bar, for the sake of the demo, making fights not even last more than 30 seconds. I'm hopeful that in the time between now and the game's official release in mid 2019 that it improves a lot, but as it stands right now, I'd avoid this one.

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    Divinity, Code Vein, and Hero Academia


    Immediately after, we got to be taken into a theater room to see an in-depth look at upcoming Namco games. It was here I learned Jump Force was co-developed with Spike Chunsoft, which at least gives me more hope for the future of that game. There was a developer from Larian Studios who discussed the upcoming new content for Divinity: Original Sin 2: Definitive Edition, and his way of explaining how they develop the game was amusing. "We aren't satisfied with a 93 Metacritic score! We want to keep adding more stuff for our players! Our tutorial originally took 20 minutes to complete, and then it became a sprawling 15 hour act 1 story!" I was really impressed with this game. It's not as exciting as the others, as the bulk of the game is already playable already, but it certainly sounds like a great game.

    Next up was Code Vein. I let Hells Malice take control for this one, as I'm not too familiar with "Souls" styled games, only having played Bloodborne for a few hours. From what I watched, however, I couldn't ignore the blatant Dark Souls inspiration here. From the movement, to the weapons menu, it all looked very familiar to FromSoft's series. It looks both brutally difficult and fun.

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    Then, we moved onto more anime fighters. Dragon Ball FighterZ was a quick stop, and trying it out proves the game works perfectly on the Switch, though load times were a bit long. Ran exactly like the PS4 version. My Hero Academia: One's Justice stood out, when I stepped up to play it. I'm a fan of the anime, so a 3D fighting game based on the series full of superhuman characters seems like a perfect fit. And it was pretty solid--animations and models were on point, attacks were flashy and thrilling, everything was as it needed to be. I'm quite psyched for this one, when it launches.

    SoulCalibur VI


    SoulCalibur VI is arguably the biggest of Namco's lineup for this year, and it has a lot of prove, after fans were disappointed with the previous entry. Personally, I'm not entirely familiar with the series. I've played II a few times prior to this, and I enjoyed it. I can also say with certainty that SCVI was immensely enjoyable. There's all sorts of new and returning mechanics, and the combat was smooth and satisfying. Every hit feels visceral, and pulling off the new reversal edge attack really helps keep matches interesting. Geralt from Witcher was probably the funnest character to play as, using both ranged attacks and his sword to take enemies out. Using grabs to throw your enemy into a ring-out was also great, but I found it perhaps too easy to do. The only control format available were arcade sticks, which I feel didn't let players fully experience the game, either, as SoulCalibur is a game who's controls are better suited to controllers, from my opinion.

    With that, our day with Namco came to a close. SCVI and the My Hero Academia game were the standout titles from their booth, and any Switch owners who've yet to play DBZ FighterZ are in for a treat! As the closer to our long day, it was time to meet up with another publishing company: 505 Games, responsibly for publishing titles like Bloodstained, Indivisible, and Control.

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    Control


    If you haven't heard of this game, or it's developer--Remedy Entertainment--they're the creators of the Max Payne, Alan Wake, and Quantum Break franchises. We got to see a demo for their latest game, "Control", a third-person action adventure game. Watching some of the gameplay, it felt very familiar to Quantum Break, their most recent game. The premise was also interesting; you play as a woman who controls a institution that's full of brainwashed workers, and you have to explore the giant compound to figure out the mystery to it, while choosing to assist other characters throughout the building. The demo wasn't allowed to be played, and we watched a worker from Remedy play through the first 15 minutes, making sure to take things slow, so while we didn't see much, what we did see was interesting.

    Bloodstained and Indivisible


    Bloodstained is a game I've been waiting for since the Kickstarter for it went live back in 2015. It's felt like an incredibly long three years waiting for the game, but as I played the game, it absolutely felt it was worth the wait. The E3 special demo of the game contained the game first boss and ship level that the backer's demo consisted of, but it also featured a new area exclusively for the show. As far as things go, this is definitely feels like a follow-up to Igarashi's other Castlevania titles. My only complaint was that the demo was so short.

    Moving on, Indivisible was next on tap. I wasn't really sure how to think of this game, and before I sat down to play it, I remembered it's own crowdfunding success, and also its recent delay to next year. I was mixed--the game sounded amazing on paper--hand drawn animated character art, hiring the composer from Secret of Mana, and a swath of playable characters and environments. In most cases, these lofty crowdfunded games fall short, and I have to admit that this was my expectation for Indivisible. However, I'm more than elated to say that my initial thoughts were very wrong, and that the game lives up to what developer Lab Zero claimed in their Indiegogo campaign. Besides the stunning art, the combat stands out, utilizing metroidvania exploration, while mixing in turn-based gameplay in an ATB-styled fights, where you control four party members with each of the 4 face buttons on a controller. It sounds ridiculous, a mish-mash of fighting games and something reminiscent of Chrono Trigger's combat, with Metroid-styled platforming and exploration, but it absolutely manages to pull it off in a creative and successful way. This was definitely a highlight of the day.

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    Closing


    With that, our day 2 came to a close. This was easily the most difficult of all the days, involving at least 15 games being played, 4 meetings with developers, and over 5 miles of walking throughout the LA Convention Center. But, as always, it was a blast, and incredibly enjoyable! Thanks again for reading, and definitely stay tuned, because it's the dawn of the final day: our meeting and tour with Nintendo! See you then!
     
    Discussion (25 replies)
  1. RedoLane

    RedoLane GBAtemp Maniac

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    First of all, great coverage!
    Secondly, I've been alpha-testing Code Vein around 2-3 months ago, and it's absolutely promising as a challenging game(Can't say much on the story, since I've been only testing gameplay)
    And lastly, I get your feeling about Jump Force. I do think that it will improve A LOT, since it was only a demo at W.I.P state, and based on past Jump crossover games, the roster will rise up by a lot(Personally I hope for Mashiro-kun from Bakuman :3)

    Other than that, glad you had a blast :)
     
    Last edited by RedoLane, Jun 17, 2018
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  2. Costello

    Costello Headmaster

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    another great article, nicely done Chary :)
    damn I can’t believe it... a 4 hour long queue for Bethesda on day 2 and that’s only for press? how many press passes did they send out? no wonder we get in every year now!
    I cant wait for the next article and the part about Nintendo! wee!
     
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  3. Chary
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    It doesn't help that a lot of the lines have excessive demos that take a while to get through. SEGA's line was so extra bad because their demos took like 15-30 minutes to play through. With a length like that, even a small amount of people in line would take hours. According to E3's own self reported numbers, 70,000 attendees were invited. This includes industry, exhibitors, media, and normal people.
     
  4. epickid37

    epickid37 ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

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    So far Nintendo's been my favorite out of all the presentations. They've all been underwhelming, but in my opinion, Nintendo's was the least underwhelming. I might be a bit biased though
     
  5. Chary
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    Considering what people expected, we were let down, but that was our own theorizing and expectations. What we actually got was a focus on their two major upcoming "system sellers", which is fine, because Nintendo has the ability to do these Direct presentations all year long to show us more stuff later. A "weak" E3 for them isn't as big a deal as a weak Sony/Microsoft Conference is. I personally believe Microsoft knocked it out of the park while Nintendo did "just fine".
     
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  6. Sonic Angel Knight

    Sonic Angel Knight GBAtemp Legend

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    @Chary did you have a favorite game to play at E3 yet? :toot:
     
  7. epickid37

    epickid37 ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

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    Yeah. But I'm a ninty fanboy, so I'm obligated to say they're the best :P
     
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  8. Chary
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    Bloodstained, Smash, and Hero Aca are all super high up there!
     
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  9. Sonic Angel Knight

    Sonic Angel Knight GBAtemp Legend

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    Isn't that a fighting game? I thought you didn't like fighting games. :unsure:
     
  10. RedoLane

    RedoLane GBAtemp Maniac

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    Whoa, Bloodstained :O
    I'm actually a backer for the game, so I'm getting progress reports from time to time.
    It exceeded my expectations completely, and that comes from a long-time Castlevania fanboy. :D
     
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  11. Chary
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    I don't dislike them, I'm just not incredibly skilled at 2D fighters. I loved DBZ FighterZ, and Tenkaichi 3 is one of my favorite games ever.

    Yeah! It really does feel like Iga's other games in terms of quality. My only gripe is 2.5D but I'm going to grips with that the more I see it.
     
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  12. Sonic Angel Knight

    Sonic Angel Knight GBAtemp Legend

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    Have you considered a study buddy? :P

    You know learning from someone skilled. A tutor... or youtube videos. Still you don't have to be good, as long as you have fun right? :ninja:
     
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  13. Chary
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    I also forgot to mention something hilarious. When I was at Namco's booth, there was a man in a suit that met with some of their booth representatives. He had no idea of any of the games there, but his badge said "investor" on it. One of the staff from Namco was trying to convince him to try their games and sell him on them. "What is this game?" "Ah, this is a game based on the hottest genre right now, and will certainly have many fans". The best part was when they discussed My Hero Academia.

    "What is this?"
    "It's like Justice League, but anime. This is very popular in both Japan and America."
    "So could I compare this to Attack on Titan?"
    "Ah, yes sure, it definitely has action like Attack on Titan does! Imagine beloved characters like Justice League, with action from Attack on Titan, with the popularity and appeal of Pokemon. This game is a garunteed success."

    It was hilarious and surreal to see this woman try to explain an anime fighting game to a super serious man in a suit.
     
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  14. DarthDub

    DarthDub Amateur Hacker

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    Good to know that Dragon Ball FighterZ on Switch won't be gimped! I'm stoked!
     
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  15. Chary
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    And the Switch Pro Controller was actually kinda fun to use for the game. I was a bit confused initially cuz I'm used to using a DS4, but playing with Switch controllers felt nicer than I expected.
     
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  16. Darksigil

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    I really hope they don't "artificially" increase Code Vein's difficulty. One of the best things about Darksouls difficulty level, is that it isn't
    unfair to the player. It just requires observation and strategy. As opposed to an enemy that just 1 shots you regardless of what you do and has an absurd amount of health.
     
  17. Chary
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    The health of the enemies seemed fair. I hope the demo was toughened up to make the boss fight more dramatic, because it seemed kinda insane. Other than that, it was like in Dark Souls where if you got caught by surprise or made a mistake, the enemy really makes you pay for it, and chops a lot of your health off. It also looks like you need to pay attention to attack patterns as well.
     
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  18. DS1

    DS1 伝説の雀士

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    Yes!
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  19. Sonic Angel Knight

    Sonic Angel Knight GBAtemp Legend

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    Well we was discussing being good at fighting games, not if fighting games are good or bad. :P

    So you tell us if it's relevant. I just suggested to her that she get's a training buddy or watch some youtube videos. Usually it helps to get better. Then again it depends how determined one is to be good. But who cares as long they having fun right? :ninja:
     
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