Electronic Arts’ E3 conference kicked off with a fairly quick trailer from the explosive from Mass Effect 3 that is set to release on March 6, 2012. This was quickly followed by Casey Hudson, the Executive Producer of the game, remarking that the first two titles have been about “foreshadowing an all out galactic war with ... the reapers.” Casey then continued to note that as John Shepherd you’d be looking to mount a counteroffensive of such magnitude that is enough to save Earth. The subsequent live demo featured one of the many attacks against the Reapers that players will engage in using the heavy weapons at their disposal. Beyond anything Mass Effect 3’s live demo was impressive in that the scale of the battles were tremendous as the surrounding atmosphere.
 


Casey Hudson stated that “Mass Effect 3 will be the best game in the series”
 

Casey then continued to note that Mass Effect isn’t just about this war, but is also about “decisions with huge decisions and sacrifice” all wrapped up in a story of “tremendous emotional impact.” As he left the stage the first gameplay trailer was subsequently released and featured a typical Mass Effect atmosphere and plot line. Although this title didn’t blow anyone away, it easily managed to be an impressive looking title that will be a definite game of the year contender in 2012.
 

John Ricotello, CEO of EA, then came onto the stage to explain what EA’s “game changers” show will be all about. He cited that it won’t be about “random celebrity appearances” possibly taking a shot at the previous Microsoft conference that featured the likes of Ice-T. He noted that their show was about “developers showing [off] their games” and would feature “a small stage, a big screen, and nine developers out here to show you their games.” He then began the first of many plugs regarding Origin.com which is a website where individuals can research and download everything EA.
 


NFS, after 17 iterations of the series, has never looked better.
 

The CEO then introduced the Executive Producer of Need for Speed: The Run Jason Delong while noting that it features the “revolutionary online experience that we call auto-run.” Jason noted that the Black Box team has been hard at work on this cross-country racing game from San Francisco to New York. He noted that last year’s release of autolog was revolutionary, and that they were “upping the ante” by “weaving autolog into the story” in order to make “every second of every race count.” He further noted that The Run would be the first game in the series that began in 1994, and has featured 17 different instalments, that would feature high octane out of car action. The demo was impressive and concluded with the player kicking out the window of his overturned car illustrating the redefinition that this long series has undergone.


The Star Wars Theme has ought to be one of society's most momumental songs.
 

BioWare’s Dr Greg Zeschuk then walked on stage to the sound of the Star Wars soundtrack as he began to introduce Star Wars The Old Republic noting that in the face of great titles such as Mass Effect and Dragon Age that “Star Wars is in another class” and that they have never “done anything this big.” He noted that the game represents years of his life, sacrifice and that it was “absolutely worth it.” As he walked off stage the trailer began showing what will be an exhilarating experience that lets you “choose your side” and cement your place alongside your allies in the Star Wars universe.
 

This was followed by the EA Sports trailer for the redesign of the SSX franchise that urges you to “defy reality” and “own the planet” through the use of a “massive open world” in January 2012. The real life mountains are there for players to tame through the three “distinct new ways to play the game” that are “Race It,” “Trick It” and “Survive It.” The game’s characters were then noted as audience members were once again directed towards Origin.com to find more about these unique individuals. As a special bonus it was also noted that a new SSX character will be revealed on Facebook “before the end of E3.”
 


Even non-snowboarding fans ought to be intrigued this title.
 

FIFA 12, backed by a team who has won “51 awards around the world,” when then put on display. FIFA was noted as being “quite simply the world’s game.” Matt Bilbey was then welcomed to the stage to talk about the strides that FIFA 12 has made in order to introduce “the most advanced engine” in the industry to the gaming world. He noted FIFA 12’s features that include tactical defending, precision dribbling and the highly anticipated player impact engine. The EA Sports Football Club was then brought to further light as a “Live Service that is fresh and new all the time” utilizing storylines for the purpose of challenges and leaderboards. Sadly, this was an uninspired showing of “the next generation of sports games” as the same trailer from weeks past was shown and no real new information was provided.
 

Madden 12 was subsequently presented, and though the trailer featured a very ecstatic Vince Lombardi was not incredibly impressive. Afterwards, the presentation featured three NFL players including the ever-popular Ray Lewis in a showing that brought Ricotello’s early comment about celebrity appearances to mind. This showing of the game “built by the fans” was just as disappointing as FIFA 12 in really bringing nothing new or impressive to the table.
 

One positive light out of both FIFA and Madden was the ability to cross profiles over the platform barriers to provide an individual with an all around engaging experience. This social element was quickly followed up with a look at The Sims Social connection in bringing the “best experience” to Facebook in light of “robotic [Facebook] games that focus on agriculture” which is clearly a shot at the ever-popular Farmville. The Sims Social was sprouted as being “alive” as it that lets you “play with your friends [and] play with life.” Online dating sites are one thing, but this title has gone too far.

 


3 World Series Rings, and now a AAA contender for Curt Schilling.

 

Curt Schilling, the founder of 38 Games, was then welcomed to the stage to introduce Kingdom of Amalur: Reckoning. He noted that the 2012 release would feature “fast and fluid combat” throughout the “huge open world” environment that is “filled with magic, wonder, and danger.” The trailer was definitely impressive as Reckoning appears to be a title that will impress. However, once again the presentation of an impressive game at the EA conference was lacklustre.

 

The highlight of EA’s Conference was then brought to light as Ted Price, the President and CEO of Insomniac Games, was brought to the stage in order to unveil his company’s new multiplatform franchise. The Ratchet and Clank creators presented Overstrike, a game that features a team of four misfits who seek to stop a global terrorist organization from completing their goal of eliminating mankind. Classic Insomniac humour and high powered gadgets were put on this display in this fantastic trailer.

 

 

The third entry in the Battlefield series was then presented by Karl Magnus Troedsson who claimed it would be “the best battlefield experience ever.” He began by showing the new Frostbite engine that allows for a “more physical battlefield experience” to bring the action to life. Troedsson talked about the creation of the “one hundred percent free” battlelog which is “hub of powerful social tools” that allows for real-time stat tracking, the creation of groups, and so much more. He announced that the open beta will be available through Origin.com in September, and ended the conference with an impressive look at a desert battlefield.

 


Releasing on October 25, 2011 which is weeks before the November 9 launch of MW3.


Overall the EA conference featured a lot of high quality, big name titles, but many failed to present anything interesting or new for the audience. Overstrike was definitely the highlight, The Run was exciting and the Battlefield physics engine was incredibly impressive as it had progressed a lot further than expected. Sadly, the failed presentations surrounding FIFA, Madden, the ridiculousness of The Sims on Facebook and the lack of substantially new information dropped this conference from amazing to being mediocre at best.
 

My Ranking: B
Cian Crowdy: A-
David Gabriel: C
 

Joshua McCaul, NoobFeed.

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  • that's why TOR is taking so long, they're spending all their time making those cutscenes... lol.  I think Battlefield 3 has the potential to beat down MW3 in sales.  Or at least the beginning of a shift of domination in that market.  I'm not a COD player since I like the battlefield concept better, so I'll probably pass COD and get BF3.  Probably going to play ME3 regardless of my distaste for the changes from ME1 to ME2, might wait to see what people say about the content before I buy however.  Ah, NFS is bringing me back, I've been gaming since NFS was a new franchise, then I kind of washed away from it after awhile, but I've played a little hot pursuit and it can be a good filler between in depth RPG games.  Good coverage.


    Posted Jun 07, 2011

  • I'm very very very impressed with Battlefield 3. Not a bad strategy to release it before MW3.


    Posted Jun 07, 2011

  • All and all, EA had an killer presentation. Really looking forward to most of these games including SSX.



    What you put in the caption of the star wars video is funny because last weekend, i downloaded and cropped the Imperial March and put it as my current Ring tone on my phone lol so now as i am walking, someone calls me, and you hear the Imperial March. Its very dramatic when that happens as i am walking into a room (happened twice during the weekend)


    Posted Jun 07, 2011

  • @FrostKing I'm not complaining by any stretch -- the cut scences look fantastic. Battlefield 3 -- you're absolutely right, especially with it being released in advance of MW3. Glad you enjoyed the coverage!



    @Sleven The physics engine was a lot further along than I had imagined. Definitely going to be a quality title.





    @Dramus They had a fantastic lineup of games, and lol nice -- the Imperial March ringtone is awesome. Reminds me of an episode of Big Bang Theory where Rajesh gets a shirt that plays music, puts the Star Wars theme on it and walks into the Comic Book store. Very funny scene in my opinion.


    Posted Jun 07, 2011

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