Friday, June 22, 2012

The Missing Games of E3

The Missing Games of E3

            After Violent Gamer’s trip to E3 this year, I feel confident in saying we were all a bit…underwhelmed.  Which makes sense, I suppose.  This is probably the last year of the current generation of consoles, so of course E3 will lack some of the drama and excitement of other years.  It was a kind of  Swan Song for the current generation, and while I understand that in itself is hard to make exciting, I think they could have gone out with a bit more of a bang.  In any case, there are a few games that I did not see at E3 that I believe have no excuses to have been missing.  All of these games should have lit up E3 and had us talking in hushed whispers of awe, and yet they were all absent.  To be honest, I felt a bit cheated.  But I haven’t given up hope.  And with that in mind, here is my list of the missing games of E3 2012:

1.     The Last Guardian

I really want to know exactly what that giant creature is...

If the ICO Shadow of the Colossus HD Collection taught us anything, it is that Team ICO + HD = Awesomeness.  ICO and Shadow of the Colossus are universally acclaimed titles, and rightly so.  They are truly unique in telling compelling stories that make us laugh, cry, and feel every emotion possible.  So needless to say when The Last Guardian was announced, I was ecstatic.  And that trailer looked so cool!  But ever since then it has just been more and more bad news: the director leaving Sony, delayed release dates, rumors and hearsay.  This game was supposed to come out this year, and there was no word about it at E3.  Now we have a nebulous release date of 2013, and nothing but waning hope that this game will ever see the light of day.  I thought this year’s E3 would be a wonderful chance for Sony and Team ICO to reassure our faith in The Last Guardian by showing us some gameplay, and maybe even having a short demo.  At the very least, a solid release date would have been nice.  Now we must face the big question all alone: even if this game ever does come out, will all of the inner turmoil cause the game to be less than what its creators imagined?  Team ICO is all about imagination – I don't know how I would feel about a game where they were forced to reign in their creative vision.

2.     Beyond Good & Evil 2

This game would be so awesome - just look at Pey'j!

Beyond Good & Evil is one of my favorite games of all-time, hands down.  The story, the characters, the world, all of it was incredibly engaging.  That game made me care about what happened in it, and I had an incredibly fun time experiencing it.  When the sequel was announced, I was astonished.  After playing the HD version of the original, I could not wait to see what Ancel did with the sequel.  That teaser trailer was so tantalizing, and yet it left so many questions.  And then there was the “leaked footage” of Jade running through a city, which looked awesome.  I was a bit bummed to learn it had been delayed (although Rayman Origins is a pretty awesome placeholder), but now with the announcement it will be on next-gen consoles, I am a bit worried.  Ancel is already working on Rayman Legends for the Wii U – how long are we going to have to wait for BG&E2?

3.     Final Fantasy Versus XIII

Is this game just a dream?

This game confuses me to no end.  We’ve seen trailers, we’ve seen gameplay footage, we’ve seen Nomura talking about it for years now.  I will say that one thing has become clear – Nomura wants to use Square Enix’s new Luminous Engine to do the lighting for the game.  Well, if that is the case, then that means that Versus is probably going to come out for the next gen consoles.  And if that is the plan, then why announce the game in 2006?  It seems a bit unfair to me to make fans wait 7 years (minimum) for a game that still has yet to receive a set release date.  And after all of those years of waiting, how in the world can it live up to the hype?

4.     Final Fantasy X HD

This would be so much fun.

Yet another puzzle from Square Enix.  They announced quite a while ago that Final Fantasy X was going to be updated for the PS3.  This sounded really cool, not only because seeing the beautiful world of X in HD would be amazing, but for the potential path it could lead to for Square Enix.  If the X remake was success, then what would stop them from making the famed VII remake?  Unfortunately, Square Enix has said virtually nothing since the announcement, other than the fact that it is due out in 2012.  If that is still true, wouldn’t E3 be a wonderful place to show us a trailer or something?

5.     Tales of Xillia

Why not?

Unlike all of the other titles on this list, this game has already been released.  In fact, it was released to universal acclaim.  I am a big fan of the Tales series as a whole, and when reviews of the game began to come in from Japan, I was ecstatic.  Many claimed this to be the pinnacle of the tales saga, on par or even besting Symphonia.  I could not wait until they announced the US release date.  Instead of doing so, however, Namco announced a sequel - for Japan.  So the game is definitely a success – why is Namco not bringing it to the States?  I was really excited about the new artistic design they seemed to be going for, and the more mature feel in general.  I really, really want to play this game, and I am sure I am not the only one in America who feels that way.  Namco, don’t forget about us!

6.     Zelda Wii U

The demo was awesome, but now we want the game!

For me personally, the Wii U is a giant question mark.  I was able to play it a bit at E3, and I felt that while the concept was really cool and innovative, I still wondered what it would be like in practice.  Sure, some of the new controller concepts were intriguing, and it was cool to see Nintendo games at 1080p, but I was still not convinced that the Wii U was worth the risk.  I feel like what I really need in order to believe in the Wii U is a game that will make me take that leap of faith without any hesitation – a Legend of Zelda title.  Nintendo showed us with Skyward Sword that Link and Zelda are enough to go back to Nintendo anytime.  And I think an announcement/trailer/gameplay footage of a new game for the Wii U would have given us all a lot more confidence in the console.  In my opinion, Nintendo really wasted an opportunity.

7.     Final Fantasy XIII-3

Will we ever see Lightning again?

I have already written two articles about why we need Final Fantasy XIII-3, so I will keep this one brief.  Square Enix created two games that were absolutely wonderful.  They told a story that drew me in, created characters that I grew to love, and offered me an experience that I will never forget.  However, they did not offer a resolution to that experience.  I know that the people working at Square Enix have hearts – and I am confident there is no way they would only tell 2/3 of a story.  I believe in Final Fantasy XIII-3, and I believe it will be a truly amazing game.  I just wish they had given us something at E3.  Even if it was just an official announcement.  I suppose we’ll have to wait for TGS 2012.  In the meantime, we’ve got to keep hope alive.


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