E3 2015: Game demo highlights

e3-2015The Electronic Entertainment Expo is the most exciting time of the year for gamers, and this year’s E3 conference featured several exciting announcements. Here are a few of the highlights.

Fallout 4

Bethesda announced Fallout 4 just a week before E3, releasing an exciting teaser trailer, but didn’t include a release date. Bethesda’s E3 press conference featured an extensive new gameplay video, which showed the game’s prologue that takes place before the apocalypse, character customization, and a new crafting system that gives players the ability to collect and recycle resources into a variety of new weapons and mods, among other things. The game’s Pip-Boy interface made a splash as the collector’s edition was revealed to feature a real-life Pip-Boy that houses a player’s smartphone. Fallout 4 will hit stores on November 10, 2014.

Final Fantasy VII Remake

Final Fantasy fans were hoping for some solid details on when they could expect to see the long-awaited Final Fantasy XV at E3, but Square-Enix announced weeks before the event that there would be no new details. However, what was revealed at E3 was probably just as exciting. Fans of the series have generally held Final Fantasy VII to be the series’ best and have been begging for a remake for years. Square-Enix announced in December 2014 that the game would be coming to PS4 sometime in 2015, but their E3 announcement went above and beyond this original announcement with a trailer teasing a complete remake of Final Fantasy VII exclusively for PS4. No release date has been announced, but the PC port of the game will still be coming to PS4 later on in the year. The game will also be coming to iPhone and iPad devices during the summer.

Kingdom Hearts III

Square-Enix also showed an impressive new trailer for Kingdom Hearts III, though the game is said to still be in development. Kingdom Hearts has been a fan-favorite and beautifully combines the worlds of a Final Fantasy game with many of the worlds we’ve been introduced to in Disney movies. The trailer shows Sora, the game’s protagonist, fighting alongside Donald Duck and Goofy, but many more Disney characters are sure to be part of the action. The world building of this game looks spectacular and certainly gave players something to look forward to. However, no release date or even a hint at a timeframe was given, so it may be awhile before this game is released.

Halo 5: Guardians

Microsoft featured a new Halo 5 gameplay demo, and what’s impressive about the game’s debut on Xbox One is the new Warzone multiplayer mode. The first-person shooter has always been popular with players who love multiplayer, but this expands the typical player to player deathmatches. Warzone is more team-oriented. The maps are huge. And you’re able to acquire some AI defenders to your team whenever you take a base. The new multiplayer seems to be a hit for long-time fans of the series. Halo 5 is set to release on October 27, 2015.

Star Wars Battlefront

The first gameplay demo for Star Wars: Battlefront was shown at E3, and it’s an exciting playable dive back into the original trilogy with Luke Skywalker as a playable character. The demo showed a battle on Hoth, bringing the world we experienced in the movie to life in the game. Players will get to fight with lightsabers as Jedi and even fight against Darth Vader himself. Star Wars: Battlefront will release on November 17, 2015 for the US and November 20, 2015 for the UK.

Destiny: The Taken King

Bungie and Activision have been committed to making Destiny a continually evolving game that gets better with every release of DLC. The Taken King will be the third expansion of the game, and the game’s E3 presentation revealed an entirely new planet for players to explore, as well as a host of new enemies that are unlike previous opponents. The Taken King expansion will be released September 15, 2015.

Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End

Sony’s gameplay demo of Uncharted 4 is like sitting through the opening scenes of an epic action film. Nathan Drake goes from battling on foot to riding through the city in a jeep to being dragged by a truck. Plenty of explosions mark this as one of the most exciting reveals at E3. Unfortunately, no release date was announced.

The Last Guardian

The Last Guardian was originally announced as a game that was coming to PS3, so it’s been awhile since anyone heard anything about the game. But the game was finally re-revealed at E3 to be coming to PS4, and players who have been awaiting this game couldn’t be more excited. The game has been in development for years and though it’s not set to come out until 2016, Sony was confident enough about the game’s development to show a trailer, and it looks impressive.

Call of Duty: Black Ops III

Activision focused on the multiplayer aspect of the latest Call of Duty game at E3, showing a gameplay demo of what players can expect. What’s significant about this multiplayer is that your identity in the game matters. You become a specialist. Specialists have different abilities, unique weapons, they look different from one another, and they have different histories. This is an impressive move forward for the game, making players more invested in the characters that they play.

XBox One Backward Compatibility

An exciting move forward for Xbox One players is the ability to play games for Xbox 360, which means players don’t have to re-buy games they already own in order to play them. The Backward Compatibility Beta is currently available for Xbox preview members, and the full program will become available in fall 2015.

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