Checkpoint: Post-E3 2015 Edition

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E3 2015 is over which means it’s time for some random impressions and thoughts.

Star Fox Zero

I had Star Fox Zero in my list of pre-orders before seeing it in action on Nintendo’s E3 Digital Event. After seeing the footage and the announcement of PlatinumGames’ participation, I decided it wasn’t worth the $69.99 asking price. It looked stale and sterile; certainly not like the wonderful Super Mario 3D World or any number of Nintendo’s other first party titles.

People claimed it’s taking cues from Star Fox 64 and I can see it but I don’t have nostalgia for that game and thus adhering to its legacy doesn’t appeal to me.

Virtual Reality

The buzz around virtual reality coming out of E3 2015 has been positive but I’m still not sold that it’s something that I want to partake in yet. It all seems very early and nothing has come out to convince me that I need to get this for myself. I’ll wait for HTC Vive, the Oculus Rift or Sony’s Morpheus headset to release a second revision before I will seriously consider it. That or one of these headsets can be had for less than $150.

The Division

I have The Division pre-ordered but every time I see it, I cannot help but think back to my initial gut reaction and cancel it. The player vs player betrayals sounds cool but everybody knows that the internet is full of assholes and I cannot foresee any other outcome outside of constant betrayals.

The beta will be the ultimate decider though and I’m glad it has one. I don’t have an Xbox Live! Gold membership so I’ll be giving the PlayStation 4 beta in early 2016.

Super Mario Maker

I’m impressed with Super Mario Maker and felt the need to partake in it. I don’t know if I’ll be developing levels but I’m so happy to see Nintendo get the idea right. The game specific physics, the easy level editing and easy sharing were pillars that we were all expecting but worried about when they first announced the title.

The horizontal limits may prevent players from recreating every Mario level but I’d love to see people try.

Hitman

The Hitman trailer was my favorite CG trailer coming out of E3 2015; it screamed Hitman. The gameplay trailer showed off classic Hitman ideas but blown out for modern technology. I’m very tempted to get into it on the first day and see this crazy “World of” Hitman idea unfold.

Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End

That E3 2015 press conference demonstration featured the most impressive car chase sequence of any game. But before that impressive chase, the fire fight in the market was also dazzling. There’s just so much activity on screen with items exploding, falling off carts and cover disintegrating.

It certainly looks like more Uncharted but fans of the series will notice many tiny refinements to animation and transitions to elevate it above the notion of it being a 1080p30 version of Uncharted 3.

Street Fighter V

I don’t blame anyone who thinks Street Fighter V looks like Street Fighter IV but all I ask is that you remind yourself what the game really looked like. The mind’s eye likes to embellish things.

Street Fighter V looks fun and appears to be promoting offence with normal attacks causing chip damage. Normal punches and kicks causes damage? Sounds crazy but a welcome change. At least you can’t be chipped out which will hopefully force me to become a better defender.

Fallout 4

I really want to believe in Fallout 4 but after Skyrim and their promises of a new engine filled with refinements, I’m left very skeptical. Especially coming from The Witcher 3 and its quality quests.

I have it pre-ordered but I don’t believe it’ll stay.

Xenoblade Chronicles X

Speaking of bad side quests. This game looks awesome in trailers. Giant mechs and dinosaurs in a large open world are fine ingredients to brew a quality game but if you have nothing to populate the world with, that’s a big problem. And one that I don’t want to futz with so I’m going to pass on this.

That’s it

That’s everything that I had on the top of my head. Many of it may have been negative but I was focusing on those that had 2015 and early 2016 release dates. I felt it was a great E3 and one that makes me very optimistic about future trade shows.

Checkpoint: Street Fighter V Edition

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Checkpoint - Street Fighter V Edition

It was leaked just before the PlayStation Experience event last week. We were given a brief glimpse of what the next numbered Street Fighter was going to look like and at first blush, it bares a resemblance to to Street Fighter V.

I expected a significant change in art style; every numbered Street Fighter title featured something different in the past. But upon closer inspection and a deeper look, I’m okay with the evolutionary change.

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After 6 years, Street Fighter IV’s cast is finalized

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Introducing Decapre, an agent of Shadaloo. She is the 44th (and perhaps last) character to join the Street Fighter IV roster.

She looks like a cross between Cammy and Vega (claw). I can’t say I’m particularly thrilled by this addition but the more, the merrier.

Ultra Street Fighter IV will likely be the final release of Street Fighter IV and maybe, just maybe, I will pick this version up. After all, the ability to select different character “Editions” will allow me to live through all those other revisions that I passed on after Super Street Fighter IV.

Ultra Street Fighter IV is slated for release in June 2014 on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.

Checkpoint: Why I Play Games Edition (Pt. 1)

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checkpoint-why-i-play-games-edition-pt-1

I never had to explain to people why I play and enjoy video games. There’s a multitude of reasons and anytime I try to flesh them out, I stumble. So I decided to sit down and deep dive into the many reasons why I grew so attached to this burgeoning and controversial medium.

I don’t have just one reason to play games because like movies, books and other medium in existence, games come in all shapes and sizes. Today, I’m going to shed light on the competitive allure of games.

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