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EA Earns a Gold Star From Gamers

The embattled publisher brought some serious game to E3.

It seems like the emerging theme from this E3 is redemption. There are quite a few companies this year that have to do a lot to gain back the trust and support of consumers. EA is certainly at the top of that list, although Microsoft just may have beat them to the punch in the past few weeks. Electronic Arts came on strong at their press conference, showing off new games, as well as some surprising sequels.

First up was Garden Warfare, a multiplayer-based shooter set in the Plants vs. Zombies universe from PopCap. While there’s something almost sacrilegious about turning a charming, casual tower defense game into a shooter, Garden Warfare features the same delightful sense of humor and aesthetic of its predecessor, although completely polygonal. The mode shown on stage was a wave-based survival game, much like the Horde mode introduced in Gears of War. Players assume the role of the iconic plants, and can plant support units to help out with the waves of zombies. Two boss zombies were shown: Disco Zombie and Gargantuan, which each required different tactics to take down. The game is expected to come out first for Xbox One and later for the 360, but the scale of the enemies shown in the demo would have to be reduced by a fair amount to work on the older machine.

More of the impressive Titanfall was shown off, with an emphasis on the mechs. These titans were designed from the outset to give players a different feeling when it comes to controlling giant robots. The footage proves that Respawn has succeeded in this, with the mechs quite speedy and light on their feet. One of the more impressive tricks shown in the game involves a player ejecting from their mech, launching high into the sky only to land on an enemy titan and take it down manually. It was also announced that Titanfall would be coming to the Xbox 360 and PC.

Fans of BioWare have been obviously concerned about the future of the fabled RPG developer, in light of recent releases and the departure of the studio founders. Dragon Age 3: Inquisition was shown for the first time today, and the emphasis was on exploring a full, open world for the first time in the history of the series. The trailer was frustratingly brief and didn’t show any gameplay, but fan-favorites such as Varric from Dragon Age 2 and Morrigan from Dragon Age: Origins made their appearances.

On the sports front, EA focused on the power of their new Ignite engine, which will power the next generation of EA Sports titles. NBA Live is coming back after a long hiatus that pretty much skipped most of the current generation. The emphasis here was on the ball physics, and how bounceTek™ changes the way the basketball reacts. However, very little was shown of the actual game. That went double for the new UFC title, which brought out tons of MMA celebrities, but didn’t show much in the way of gameplay. Madden 25 looks like it will suitably impress, with its focus on reactive footwork for players to move along the field realistically. Interestingly, EA didn’t mention current gen systems for these sports titles, which is an odd omission for the studio.

EA showed off the multiplayer for Battlefield 4 for the first time, and it was an impressive sight. A whopping 64 players took the stage to battle it out, and the presentation was sure to highlight all of the cool vehicles and pathways through a massive cityscape. In addition to the players running and gunning, it’s possible to use a tablet to bring in support, such as a helicopter to suppress enemy troops.

For the hardcore gamers, though, the big news was that Mirror’s Edge is coming back and is once again being developed by DICE. This came after a “blink and you’ll miss it” teaser from the same studio for Star Wars: Battlefront. Mirror’s Edge is set to reboot the series (which only had one game before this), and tells a new origin story for Faith, the protagonist who avoids the oppressive police force through free-running and flashy hand-to-hand disarm moves. It looks amazing, but will anyone actually buy it? The first game was a big failure at retail, and the new Mirror’s Edge was obviously expensive to make, sporting some of the most impressive graphics at EA’s presentation.

EA probably still has a long way to go when it comes to winning back the goodwill they’ve lost recently. With that said, this is a pretty good start, with games that appeal to the casual, the hardcore, and everything in between.


 

Comments

leeradical42

06/10/2013 at 09:32 PM

EA NBA live series and this is from an EA rep said the reason behind the NBA live no show for so long was a bug they had on there engine and could not remove the bug the ball bug as it was called was the ball would stay in the air and certain points and could not be reretreived by players, and this was but one of the reasons for the no show but that explains the new engine bringing back the NBA live thats was so good back in the day.

Matt Snee Staff Writer

06/11/2013 at 09:37 AM

yeah who knows if people will buy Mirror's Edge, but I will!!!

Julian Titus Senior Editor

06/11/2013 at 10:54 AM

Me too! Day one, just like the first game.

Aboboisdaman

06/11/2013 at 11:08 AM

I'd buy Mirror's Edge day one also. That was one of my favorite games on the PS3 despite it's flaws. I wonder if it's gonna be on next gen consoles. That might give me an incentive to buy a PS4.

transmet2033

06/11/2013 at 11:16 AM

I have always wanted to play mirror's edge, I thought that the demo was solid.  I guess I kow what I need to do while I wait for my ps4.

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