Experimental games are a hit or a miss. I’m not entirely sure that you will ever find a near universal opinion on any game but games that find themselves outside the standard mould are especially prone to that. People will either absolutely love new and different games and mechanics or they will resoundly reject them.
I use that as the intro to this review because experimental is an appropriate catch-all term to describe Her Story. It’s a mystery game that sees you dig through old police interrogation videos to determine the truth in a 21-year-old case.
It might not have a proper win state. It might rely on FMV in the style of a, well, 21-year old video game. It might be a game that’s only combat is your brain against itself. But it’s easily the best game I’ve played this year so far.
I know these episodic reviews of Telltale’s games aren’t exactly the most timely but the increasing length of time between Telltale’s releases aren’t exactly speedy either. We’re getting to the point where I’m not exactly sure that Telltale will be able to complete Tales From The Borderlands during this calendar year since the gap between releases is just over three months.
So some three months after it was released, I’ve finally gotten around to reviewing the second episode of Tales From The Borderlands. It would have been a lot easier to review this is I felt any passion for this product but I’m not entirely sure that I don’t feel a little more passion than Telltale does.
It’s probably ever so slightly late for us to have a best and worst or winners and losers of E3 post but it’s my hobbie so I’m going to do it a bit late to be of much use to anyone. Well, that’s not strictly true. The shortest wait until a major game from E3 comes out is some three months so that means that there is plenty of time for us to reflect on the state of gaming in the wake of the biggest games industry show of 2015.
During Steam’s Monster Summer Sale, I noticed something during the Tom Clancy franchise sale. The price of the upcoming Rainbow Six: Siege is $80 CAD. The US dollar price is $60. If you were to pay for the game in USD and have your credit card company convert it to CAD, a Canadian customer would spend $73. That’s an inexplicable loss of $7 as a sort of living in Canada tax (when no sales tax is charged by Steam in Canada) from a company whose biggest development studio is in Canada and receives subsidies from various levels of Canadian government.
It’s not just the Canadians who are losing out for not living in America. According to the Steam All Region Price Checker extension, British customers are being charged the equivalent of $80 USD and others in the EU will be paying the equivalent of $68 USD.
So why are certain countries paying more than other and who is at fault for the price discrepancies?
It’s not just new trailers that are getting shown off at E3. A lot of gameplay was shown at the various press briefings along with demonstrations for the games websites and magazines assembled in Los Angeles to look at the upcoming offerings from the games industry. If you’d much rather get a preview of what a vertical slice of some of the big upcoming games looks like, I’ve assembled a collection of fifteen games with gameplay video shown at E3.
From a gaming perspective, the big announcement at Microsoft’s E3 press briefing was that they are bringing backwards compatibility to the Xbox One. If you were looking for the next wave in technology and just general spectacle, Microsoft stole the show with a live on-stage demonstration of their HoloLens technology while playing Minecraft.
When we first found out that Final Fantasy VII was coming to the PS4 as an HD remake, people were extremely disappointed. After all the hope that came with the Final Fantasy VII PS3 tech demo from 2005, people have been clamoring for a full remake of the game in the style of the Final Fantasy: Advent Children movie. Instead, December’s PlayStation Experience event showed the original Final Fantasy VII slightly cleaned up for PS4.
It’s funny what Square Enix had up their sleeve to be played six months later. Sony scored a major coup for the PlayStation press conference at E3 with the surprise reveal of a major remake of Final Fantasy VII.
Two years ago, then-Xbox division boss Don Mattrick said “If you’re backwards compatible, you’re really backwards” claiming that only 5% of users used new consoles to play games from a past generation of consoles. It’s funny how much things can change in two years.
While Microsoft might not have had a mind-blowing press conference in terms of new reveals, they certainly scored more than their fair share of points with hardware announcements. The biggest of those announcements was that Microsoft would be rolling out backwards compatibility of Xbox 360 games on Xbox One.
For the first time, E3 had a dedicated show for PC gaming. At some point, I’ll probably pontificate over the dangers of a marketing event that was put together by a video game magazine that supposedly provides independent journalism at another time. For now, a lot of smaller developers brought their new wares to E3 through this new PC gaming show. If you’re a fan of indies and didn’t like what you saw on consoles, this was definitely the conference for you. If you’re looking for triple-As, maybe next year.