Jan 182012
 

Today, Bioware announced that the Mass Effect 3 demo will be released on February 14th on the PC, Xbox 360 and PS3.  The demo promises 1-2 hours of single player content as well as access to two co-op levels.  The online  co-op portion will not open up until February 17th, unless you’re a BF3 customer, which then it will unlock immediately on the 14th.  Now you have the perfect excuse to completely ignore the sham of a holiday, Valentine’s day!

Don’t forget that EA is doing some cross-promotion of their two upcoming action RPGs through their demos.  Play the Kingdoms of Amalur:Reckoning  demo to unlock exclusive armor and a weapon in ME3 and play the ME3 demo to unlock “Omniblade daggers” in KoA:R.  The Kingdoms of Amalur demo is out now on Steam, Origin, XBL and PSN and is worth checking out if you’re looking for a game with an Elder Scrolls influence that focuses on action and combat.  That demo also offers a sizable chunk of gameplay, again in the 1-2 hour range.  2 pre-release demos that offer a significant length of gameplay that are both available on the PC?  That definitely bucks the trend over the past couple years.

Jan 032012
 

I’ve  already established that 2011 had lots of great games, more so than any recent year.  But being a gamer, there’s always something to complain about, and there was enough this year to keep my bitter and jaded attitude alive and well.

I wasn’t planning to just rattle off names of games that came out this year that were just terrible; that’d take too long.  Instead I want to go through games that I had at least some sort of expectation for that just fell well short of those goals.

Early in the year the indie/downloadable game, Breach, hit Steam and XBLA during a lull of quality releases and promised to have a fully destructible environment unlike anything we’ve seen before.  Of course this fell flat and the result was a bland, low budget shooter with a scattering of destructible assets and bad shooting mechanics.  Luckily, the low cost of under $15 at launch made me forget the pain quickly enough.

Also in the first quarter Crysis 2 hit the streets.  With a new focus on multiplayer, which felt like a hybrid of CoD and BF, Cyrsis 2 had potential to make a lasting impact in the multiplayer shooter scene.  Needless to say, that never happened mainly because of two reasons.  First off, the PC version was severely crippled and was the poster child for “consolization.”  From the splash screen that said “Press Start to Begin” to the complete lack of video settings beyond changing the resolution, Crytek did a complete 180 from the original Crysis, which was PC only.  The second nail in the coffin on the multiplayer side was the lack of anti-cheat measures which meant that you were almost guaranteed to join a server and see at least one, if not more, aimbots in play.  Botting seemed so prevalent that cheaters made no attempts to hide it — Crysis 2’s CoD-style kill cam made it painfully obvious, as you watch your killer snap off 4 to 5 headshots in a row from across the map in a 3 second span.  Pile on the fact the single player was average at best and it’s hard not to be supremely disappointed with Crysis 2.

While Crysis 2 had its issues, a game that topped it in the disappointment category was Brink.  Touted as the next coming in multiplayer shooters (even by our own Suibhne) and the pedigree that comes with Wolf:ET developer Splash Damage, it was hard to not get excited about this one.  Except it didn’t even come close to meeting those expectations.  The shooting was bland, the gameplay wasn’t very focused and the difference in classes and sizes didn’t add anything interesting to the game play.  The game also suffered from technical issues out of the box which hindered uptake online and caused many never to come back.  Then they pulled some shenanigans with the DLC in that it was only free for the first two weeks before they started charging for it.  Brink was clearly a game that had much potential that was never fulfilled.

Sticking with the multiplayer shooter disappointment theme, Red Orchestra 2 came out this fall.  While I don’t have any specific knock against RO2 and Tripwire Interactive will always be a favorite of mine, RO2 didn’t do anything especially exceptional either.  During an off year, RO2 might have risen to the top, but instead it just got lost in the mix.  Launching with some performance and technical issues, the gameplay didn’t quite do it for me as the original RO mod had grabbed me some 7 years ago (wow!).  I’m willing to give RO2 another shot down the road, but worry that the player base may have been thinned too much by then.  I’ll chalk it up to bad timing.  Maybe with a bit more polish and an early 2012 release, RO2 may have done much better.

Rounding out my disappointments for 2011, I call out Assassin’s Creed Revelations.  I’m going to give Ass Creed Rev an “incomplete” for this year because I simply haven’t had time to invest in the game, but given its first couple of hours of gameplay and the overall reception of the game, AssRev doesn’t match the outstanding level of AssBro (Assassins Creed Brotherhood).  A very slow start, high expectations and a tough competition has put AssRev back on the shelf for me.  I’ll check it out again in 2012 and see if Revelations can redeem itself, but I worry that the Ass Creed saga is starting to suffer from too much repetition and player fatigue, something the CoD series is becoming synonymous with.

That pretty much wraps up my take on the 2011 gaming lineup.  2012 should be interesting with some marquee titles coming out like Bioshock Infinite, Mass Effect 3, Diablo 3 (maybe) and some other potential hits like the sequel no one wanted, Prey 2.

Happy New Year!

Dec 282011
 

2011 was a year where we saw a ridiculous amount of good and great games released.  After several years with a dearth of great titles, this year was overrun with quality games vying for our attention, which magnified the problem eventually encountered by all gamers: Too many games, too little time.  Here’s where I take a look at some of the more memorable ones that I’ve played.

Best “New” Game
Of course every year we’re usually drowning in sequels, but this year, we had a decent amount of new games that weren’t the 8th or 9th iteration of the same thing (I’m looking at you, CoD 8!).  Probably my favorite was L.A. Noire.  When you boil it down, L.A. Noire was pretty much an adventure game that had a dash of action and a hint of open-worldness, but the overall presentation and production values tied to an interesting story made it one of my favorite games of 2011 overall.  Top notch voice acting and an entertaining cast of characters kept me playing just to unravel the story.  Searching for clues and making a case against suspects has never been so well done as it is in L.A. Noire.  Definitely worth checking out, and also makes for a great spectator game for your significant other.  Also, it’s now available in PC form.

Honorable mentions in this category go to Bullet Storm, which was much better than I expected and is probably the game that Duke Nukem Forever should have been.  Also Telltale’s Back to the Future point-and-click adventure was very good for those who love 80’s nostalgia.

Best Indie Game
I almost called this category “best downloadable game.”  Of course, in 2011, almost every game is “downloadable” — but really what I’m looking at is indie games that haven’t had any wide retail releases and usually cost $20 and under.  This category probably had the most growth in 2011 with hundreds of quality titles released.  The one that stuck out the most this year for me was Magicka.  A witty, tongue-in-cheek story with hilarious co-op play made this one playable, and re-playable for months.  It’s hard to argue with a game about wizards and magic that comes out with a Vietnam expansion complete with M16s and grenades that totally works in its game world.  The game wasn’t without its technical flaws, including lack of mid-level saves which were magnified by random crashes to desktop during co-op after a later patch, but it still provided hours of entertainment.

Honorable mentions go to Sanctum, the first person tower defense game that started life as a UT mod, Bastion and Renegade Ops.

Best Co-op
Co-op games have become a trend as of late, and 2011 had its share.  Magicka was pretty good here, as was Sanctum…even BF3 threw one in there and dangled weapon unlocks as a carrot.  But one game stands out in my mind:  Portal 2.  Portal 2 was better than the first in every way possible, which wasn’t too hard to do since the first Portal was essentially just an extended demo / pack-in for the Orange Box.  The single player in Portal 2 was great, and the co-op was completely separate and excellently done.  Trying to figure out puzzles with a friend with sometimes hilarious results was better than expected.  Mix in a heavy dosage of GLaDOS and great writing and it’s co-op at its best.   Even if you only played and enjoyed the single player, you owe it to yourself to buddy up and play the co-op, you won’t be disappointed.

Best Multiplayer
This one is pretty easy for me.  Battlefield 3 is the obvious choice.  BF3 offers such an deep experience that lets you play the game you want to play it.  The classes you choose actually affect the way you play the game and with extra-large maps and a few different game Battlefield 3modes, this game will keep you entertained for hours on end.  Team play is not only an option, but almost required even in just regular pub servers, it’ll scratch most people’s itch for some sort of organized team gameplay.  Not to mention the persistent stat and level tracking, all available from the web, BF3 provides the most in-depth experience we’ve seen in an online shooter…probably ever.  Sure, it has its flaws, and the whole Steam / Origin debate raged during the pre-release period which was turned out to be a non-issue or at least accepted begrudgingly for most players.  Where else are you going to get your online shooting needs?  True, CoD 8 still has its followers, but it’s too hollow and shallow of an experience for my tastes at this point.

Best Single Player
Again, this is an easy one for me; Skyrim.  I only dabbled in Oblivion years after the initial craze over the game, never played any previous Elder Scrolls games, but after thoroughly enjoying Bethesda’s last game, Fallout 3, I was ready to jump into the land of Tamriel head first, and wasn’t disappointed.  This is a game that you can sink 50+ hours and still not see everything.  Also it’s hard to discount the number of internet memes this game had already created.  I’ll be playing this one well in to 2012. 

A close runner up here has to be Deus Ex.  The series got a reboot and a facelift and it made for one of the best games of 2011.  Only a game of Skyrim’s magnitude could unseat Deus Ex as my favorite game overall.  Both games are must plays.

Unexpected Greatness
Every year there’s at least one game (more if I’m lucky) that ends up being a something that I wasn’t anticipating, tried on a whim and ended up being pleasantly surprised by the results.  Previous years Batman Arkham City and Star Craft II were games I had zero expectations of and ended up enjoying so much they made my top games list.  This year, Saints Row the Third makes that list.  I never played the first, only briefly played the second, but on numerous recommendations and an aggressive Amazon sale, I figured I’d give it a go.  The game is so completely over the top and so well written with juvenile jokes that  are actually funny (unlike Duke Nukem Forever) the game exceeded all expectations I had.  It’s just plain fun to play, and in the end, that’s what counts.

Honorables
With 2011 being so rich with great games, there were several others that I enjoyed so much but didn’t make the other lists.  Dead Space 2, for example, was definitely much better than the first in every way.  Also, if you got the PS3 version, you got a copy of Dead Space Extraction, which turned out to be a pretty good light gun game that’s worth playing if you’re into the Dead Space fiction.

Another game I sunk a ton of time into and will revisit, hopefully via co-op is Dead Island, a better than expected open-world zombie smasher.  After its rocky launch, the game got a bit of a bad rap, but is completely enjoyable if you’re into smashing hordes of zombies in hyper-violent style.  Let’s not forget Batman Arkham City, which was very good and while it didn’t recapture the magic that was Batman AA, it’s still a great game and in any other year could have been one of the best games of the year.

I want to mention Deus Ex: Human Revolution one more time.  I absolutely loved the Blade Runner-esq neo-noir atmosphere, the ability to upgrade your character in any way you see fit and a great story.  I’m looking forward to going back to it and playing some of the DLC.

2011 was so jam packed with great games that there were plenty that I didn’t even get to.  There’s still a few that I will probably get to next year, like Uncharted 3, Rage, The Witcher 2 and the indie shooter Hard Reset.  But no “best of” list would be complete without a corresponding “biggest disappointments of” list.  I’ll be working to put that one together over the next few days.

Of course these are just my memorable games of the 2011, I’m sure everyone has their own take on the year.  Feel free to add your comments!

Sep 292011
 
Battlefield 3

Now that the “early” access for pre-orderers is over, the Battlefield 3 “don’t call this a demo” beta is open to all, on the platform of your choice. All the juicy details are here, and if you’re playing on the PC, be sure to update your drivers, as described here.

I had a chance to check out the beta, and can say the gameplay is mostly what you’d expect from the next BF game, with some pretty great visuals.  The Battlelog stuff, as I previously speculated about here is a mixed bag, but has a lot of potential assuming DICE can streamline and optimize the experience.  Now’s the time to stop taking everyone else’s word for it and decide for yourself, no strings attached.  Get downloading, soldier!

Aug 032011
 

The Brink DLC promised to us long ago that was originally supposed to arrive in June and be free forever, has finally been released.  The catch is, if you don’t download this DLC pack before August 17th, you’ll have to pay $10 for the content.  This may bring back some interest in a game that ran into some problems right out of the gate and then lost a large player base soon after.  One could argue that had this DLC hit sooner, it may have kept gamers interest longer, but now it may be a case of “too little too late” and with the free for a limited time shenanigans, I don’t see that helping matters.

Still, if you’ve invested in Brink and think you may want to play the game again at some point, stop and take a moment now and queue up your download for the content before it costs too much for you to even care about it.  Check out our original post on what the DLC includes here, then hit our Brink Wiki page for tweaks before taking on the obligatory Steam link here.  Console version owners, hit up your platform’s marketplace for the download.

Jul 312011
 
Redbox
About two weeks ago I decided to give Redbox games rental a shot, and rented a game that I felt would be good test in Red Faction Armageddon.   Here’s my attempt at combining my experiences with both products with this dual mini-review.Starting with Redbox, most of you should be familiar with the Redbox kiosks and how their rental service works.  The game rental service is virtually identical, with the only change being the daily price.  $2 a night gets you a game rental for as long as you want.  You have to return the game by 9pm the next day, regardless of the time you rented it at, or you will be charged for another day.  Of course, those charges add up as the days go by, so if for some strange reason you rent a game for 30 days or somehow lose the game, you’ll be only charged a maximum of $60 for a game, which coincides with the actual retail price.  With this pricing model, it’s clear that you want to only rent a game from Redbox if you are ready to play it right now and don’t plan on holding on to it for more than a few days.  A few advantages that Redbox has is that their kiosks are pretty much everywhere, and you can check stock before heading out using their website or even iOS app, and reserve your copy beforehand if you want.  When you want to return your item, you can do it at any Redbox kiosk, it doesn’t have to be the one you rented from.   Right now Redbox’s game library is on the small side, but there are some notable titles.  Check their website for a list of available games.  As a small foot note, Redbox promo codes work for game rentals, and usually a free movie rental code will drop your first night of a game rental down to $1, with it still being $2 for each additional night.  Google search is your friend.

Redbox is great for either doing a “try before you buy” session or playing through a short yet enjoyable game that you wouldn’t want to pay full price for.  Red Faction Armageddon falls under the second category.  For a reference point, I enjoyed Red Faction Guerrilla a fair bit and found it one of the better open world, destroy everything games.  While the story was mostly throwaway, the gameplay was enjoyable, offered a lot of varied missions and content, and did a great job of letting you “play” in an open world Mars where you try to take back the colony for the people.

Red Faction: ArmageddonRed Faction Armageddon does little of what I loved about Guerrilla.  Of course, the open world play is gone, and the destruction is no longer of the massive scale that was found in the previous game.  All that said, Armageddon isn’t a bad game, it is just a step backward for the series.  The single player game is incredibly short and very linear.  I was able to play through the entire campaign in a few play sessions over a weekend that spanned maybe around 5 hours.  The story is, again, mostly throw-away and quickly devolves into what amounts to a bug-hunt.  Killing lots of bug-like aliens in this game isn’t all that satisfying despite the fact that the game gives you some fun weapons to play with, namely, the magnet gun.  The magnet gun is basically the star of the game, which allows you to use destruction as an active weapon and can produce some hilarious results.  Attach one end of a magnet to something, including enemies; attach the other end to something else, even *another* enemy, and watch the two get pulled together with explosive force.  It’s as fun as it sounds.

For the most part, Armageddon plays out like a serviceable third person shooter, and not many sequences stand out, with exception of a few of the mech portions.  When you do get to pilot the games mechs, you’ll get into some of the game’s more satisfying combat since you’re virtually invulnerable (on normal mode) and can deal massive destruction.  Those sequences made me long for a good new Shogo game.  Oh well.

Aside from a few bright spots, Armageddon is very average;  worth playing on a rental if you’re a fan of the series and totally skippable for everyone else.  Now that it’s confirmed that the Red Faction series is now defunct, in part due to lukewarm reception to Armageddon, it’s sad to see it go out on a low note.  I would have liked  to see them build on Guerrilla instead of going into a different, more generic, direction.  As far as Redbox game rentals, since everything is up front and there are no commitments, it’s hard not to recommending giving it a shot, assuming they have a title you’d like to play.  It’s not ideal for games that you may want to play over the course of weeks, but if you want to play through a short game or give a game a trial over a weekend, you can’t go wrong.
Jun 252011
 

If you have been living under a rock and had not heard the news yet, TF2 is now free to play.  You can download it at the TF2 website for both Macintosh and Windows.

The free to play will now be supported by microtransactions within the steam store.  You will be able to purchase new weapons and items.  Valve also claims that they will continue to offer free items as well.

Valve also seems to be taking a pragmatic approach to supporting the community:

“It’s a belief of ours that in multiplayer games it’s generally true that the more people playing the game, the higher value the game has for each individual customer.

“The more players, the more available servers in your area, the wider variety of other players you’ll find, the greater the opportunity for new experiences, and so on.”

This would be bucking the trend of AAA titles coming out at $50-$60 range and support disappearing.  It also seems to be a lesson that some companies *cough* Epic *cough* could relearn.

According to Steam, I only have 2.8 hours played in TF2.  Unfortunately, the Orange Box came out at the same time as CoD4.  CoD4 got a bit more playing time.  However, if more people pick up on TF2, I could certainly see myself devoting more time to it.

Jun 142011
 
Battlefield 3

Pre-order bonus are nothing new.  The fact that it’s a trend that upsets many gamers doesn’t seem to be decreasing the wide-spread usage of pre-order bonuses.  Many games, you’d have to buy multiple copies from both brick and mortar and online retailers to compile all the various extra weapons, levels and perks being offered, which is obviously a non-customer friendly practice.  Even stranger, it’s not uncommon to see codes for bonuses sell on eBay for $10 or sometimes much, much more.  Now that details of BF3’s “Physical Warfare Pack” and “Back to Karkand” have been fully explained, many gamers have been fighting back against DICE and EA on these practices, claiming that if you don’t pre-order the game, you’ll be at a disadvantage online because you won’t get the extra weapons pre-orderers will get.  Also, you’ll have to pay extra to get the “Back to Karkand” pack, which includes some old favorite maps like Strike at Karkand and Wake Island, that any BF veteran will want access to.

What kicked it off was a threat of boycotting the game over at Reddit, which then prompted a response by DICE.  Of course, gaming boycotts rarely work — and we all remember the CoD:MW2 Steam boycott group (over lack of dedicated servers) who many of which were found to be playing the game on release.  However, the internet reminds us it was Sarcastic Gamer who promoted a boycott of the original (console only) BF Bad Company game, which tried to pull a similar stunt on pre-order exclusive weapons scattered about various retailers.  After hearing the outcry of the internet, DICE and EA backpedaled on the idea, and everyone was happy.

This time around, DICE doesn’t seem as willing to compromise, stating that pre-order weapons won’t imbalance the game, and will just offer a “more varied arsenal.”  As far as “Back to Karkand” — well, if you don’t pre-order the game, you can still get it post-release at an undisclosed extra price.

I’m definitely not a fan of pre-order shenanigans like this, although I have been known to pre-order games, mostly at Amazon.  My main motivation for pre-ordering is usually monetarily based, due to the plethora of $10 and $20 credits offered pre-release on high profile titles.  I usually won’t pre-order a game that only offers exclusive content as it’s usually just throw-away items — most developers won’t offer “game changing” items because it throws the whole balance of the game out of whack.  DICE says they are most definitely not doing that here, almost alluding to the fact that these extra weapons are worthless.   However, the extra map pack, offering some highly desirable maps, could save you money by not making you pay full retail for the game ($60 on all platforms) plus conceivably another $10 or more for the Karkand pack which includes Karkand (duh), Wake Island, Gulf of Oman, and Sharqi Peninsula which represent the best maps from the previous BF games.

Who’s pre-ordering this one?  I’m still on fence, but don’t appreciate DICE explaining the pre-order bonuses as “rewarding our core fanbase.”  We know what these incentives are for, please don’t insult us.  A better way to reward your core fanbase is to offer these 4 map remakes to all purchasers of the game, included in the base price of $60.

Jun 142011
 

Having finished L.A. Noire last week, I figured I’d follow up my first impressions with a few final thoughts on the game.  Overall, I found the game very entertaining from start to finish although this can definitely be considered a game that is “not for everyone.”

First off, it’s not an action game.  Even though it’s Rockstar who brought you GTA and Red Dead Redemption, L.A. Noire is most certainly not a cops and robbers shoot ‘em up.  There is a bit of shooting, and you’ll get to kill your share of bad guys, but these sequences feel more like afterthoughts or bolt-ons rather than important parts of the game.  Additionally, the shooting in the game isn’t very good, and probably provides some of the least enjoyable parts of L.A. Noire.  Adding to the feel that action isn’t a focus, there is an option to allow you to skip action sequences if you fail them a few times in a row.  I didn’t need that option, but it’s nice to see it available for those who aren’t adept at action games and want to enjoy L.A. Noire for its story and adventure-like aspects.

Second, the driving parts can be quite tedious.  Driving, sometimes long distances, to crime scenes coupled with the fact that reckless driving can hurt your overall case score makes you want to skip driving all together.  Thankfully, this was accounted for, as most of the time your partner can do the driving, which basically amounts to fast-traveling to your destination.  After the first few times, I let my partner drive everywhere, although there are a few instances where you are forced to take the wheel to tail a suspect or chase someone down.

Lastly, the overall case formula can be repetitive.  When you strip it down to it’s core components, each case more or less follows the same pattern.  You start at the precinct and get a case assignment.  You drive (or fast-travel) the to the crime scene, look for clues, question witnesses, follow up leads, interview suspects and charge the one that best fits the evidence.  Sometimes it can end in a shootout or car chase to vary it up, but the basic formula is there.  Without spoiling it, there is no true way to fail a case, just varying degrees of success.  In cases with multiple suspects, you’ll have a sense that none of them are guilty, but some are more worthy of being thrown in jail than others.  There’s always the “popular” choice from the captain and your partner, even though you have suspicions that something larger is going on.  The cases are mostly all tied together and yes, it all will make some sense in the end, so stick with it.

With a bunch of negatives listed above, how is it possible that I enjoyed this game?  The game, at heart, is a very well polished adventure game, like some sort of modern-era point and click adventure.  With the action being forgettable and a repetitive case formula with some deviations, the thing that brings it all together is a capturing story, top-notch voice acting and excellently written dialog.  L.A. Noire unfolds like a great cop drama, sticking with the implied noir theme set in a beautiful 1947 Los Angeles environment where attention to detail was paramount.  And let’s not forget the motion capture tech used here, that has the in-game characters not only voicing their lines, but acting them out as well.  It’s all very well done.

Again, I’ll voice my praise for this game, as I did in my first impressions.  The story keeps you interested all the way through, and makes you easily dismiss the weak parts while you enjoy the experience that’s a bit unique in today’s games.  As mentioned previously, this game also is great for spectators who can play along looking for clues and interrogating suspects, while also enjoying the story much like watching a TV show.  Playing the game a case at a time seems to work as a good pace, as each case can run roughly an hour at a time, depending on how thorough you want to be.  With about 19 cases, there’s a decent amount of content here, and that doesn’t count the side stuff like finding hidden cars, responding to street crimes and doing the free-play modes where you can explore the city, if you so desire.  I haven’t done much of that and concentrated most of my focus on the main story.  It’s probably one of my favorite games of this year, if not the favorite so far.

Still looking to pick up L.A. Noire?  You’re in luck, it’s [amazon_link id=”B002I0J5UQ” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Amazon’s Deal of the Day[/amazon_link].

Jun 102011
 
E3

This is part two of my feeble attempt at analyzing what the analysts have told us about all the excitement at this year’s E3.  Part 1 is here, where I take a look at a few things that I’m looking forward to.   In this part, I take a look at a few games that I’m a bit worried about.  By nature, if I’m worried about a game, it means it’s definitely high on my watch list, and am just concerned that it may not meet my lofty expectations.

Before you go crazy, the first two games I’m most worried about are on my “will buy day 1” list, although I’m pretty sure I’m in the minority with these, as most people seem to be 100% positive these are “game changer” games…or…something.

Mass Effect 3.  Loved the first two, but was slightly disappointed that the second game dumbed down the RPG elements  and focused more on action.  Seeing the promos for Mass Effect 3 worry me further, because it seems to be almost *all* action.  It appears they are billing it as a 3rd person shooter more than anything else.  Yes, I will play it, and I’ll probably enjoy the hell out of it, but I want something more — dialog, character development, universe exploration, and RPG stuff like stats on weapons and abilities.  Hopefully all that is in there, and am hoping the epic over-the-top action is just marketing hype.

Battlefield 3.  What I’m worried about in BF3 probably has to do more with me than with the game.  I’ve loved the previous BF games and sunk hundreds of hours into BF2 and BC2 online.  BF3 looks to take the best parts of the last two PC versions, and do it in the beautiful Frostbite 2 engine.  I’m worried because I can’t seem to get myself excited to the same feverish pitch that friends and the media are about this game.  It could be all the focus they have put into the single player, which is something I don’t want from a BF game.  It looks great, and I’m sure it’ll be fun.  I’ll buy it, even preorder it.  My problem is most likely I’m suffering from modern warfare fatigue.  It’s getting a bit overdone, and the constant DICE/EA trying to out-do Call of Duty is getting old, and even a bit embarrassing.  Maybe by the time BF3 rolls around with its shear awesomeness I’ll be ready to dive back in to the online modern warfare shooter world.

Aliens Colonial Marines:  A game that I haven’t heard much about, but I’m always skeptical of games of some of my favorite movie franchises.   Sounds a bit like Star Wars Republic Commando with the squad-based mechanics and is billed as the “true sequel to the Aliens movie.” Hopefully it gives us the Aliens game we’ve always wanted but that, by nature, sets the bar so high it would be a minor miracle to achieve.  The other factor is Gearbox.  They’re responsible for picking up the pieces and finishing DNF, which isn’t really a good thing.  I’m keeping my expectations low.

I’m probably worried about much, much more than this since I’m cynical by nature, but those are just a few that stand out in the post-E3 rubble.  I’ll be closing my E3 thoughts in part 3 of my Armchair E3 analyst article, where I take a look at the things that just don’t look appealing at all.