Well what a day that was. Monkum’s,Slickers and myself attended this year’s Expo at Earls Court on Saturday 29’th Sept. We had early entry tickets and they worked out a treat as we headed straight to the BLOPS2 area and joined the queue.
Note : Over 18 only….. (yeah right !)
After a 50 minute wait we were on!
The main thing that stood out first was that all the controllers were xbox, no PS3 controllers? We played 2 games, first was Kill confirmed and then TDM. The TDM game allowed the winning team to win Black Ops 2 T-shirts, alas we didn’t win, but we came a respectable third (out of 4 teams…)
The maps had a familiar look as COD games do, and the gameplay was also as we expect COD games to be. A few cogger’s suggested last years MW3 was in fact MW2.5. Well BLOPS2 is set in the near future,the year 2025 to be precise. But although this game is near future it seems old and familiar. Don’t get me wrong.This Treyarch game looks pretty good considering it still runs on the original COD engine, but it didn’t smack me in the face and say “Look, I’m all shiny and new”.
The set ups allow for more customisation, picking your weapon and adding your favourite sight, accessory etc, is there for you. Plus the score streaks etc, give you plenty of choice.
The game plays like every other COD game you’ve played, so nothing new here. The maps also feel / look similar, I mentioned to Slick how familiar it looked to previous outings. There’s no doubt BLOPS2 will sell millions of copies, and if you’re a COD fan then you will love it too. Monkum’s has already pre-ordered it and loved his hands on time at Expo, so that’s 1 thumbs up. As for Slickers and myself, were still not excited but know we will end up getting it. Deja Vu is the most appropriate words I can use to best describe BLOPS2. Of course the Zombies in BLOPS2 was not playable or even mentioned at Expo, so for this one we will have to wait and see, if your a Zombie fan.
Next up is Medal of Honor : Warfighter. This is one of the games I was looking forward to. A bit of a wait again, but nowhere near the BLOPS2 queue. Slickers first comment was it looked “cartoony“, but I didn’t see it. Again we had about 12 mins hands on time, so we managed a decent few games again to judge our first impressions.
Me being a big bf3 fan, was expecting similarities with it, but no. Medal of Honor:War Fighter is a different game altogether. We played a plant the bomb style game and you are placed in Fireteams , which means you get to spawn on your Fireteam mate. The first noticeable difference was when you were going to respawn, if your team mate was under fire it gave you the option to fallback or wait. The waiting time for team mate respawn did seem long in some instances, particularly if they were under heavy suppression. This isn’t a bad thing but, you might get impatient with waiting or falling back.
You have the ability to “see” your team mate on the map at most times, so keeping your buddy near is easy. You can also supply your Fireteam with ammo or healing if so required. While I was waiting to play a kid in front of me was having a go. Wait a minute A KID !!! I asked the staff guy what was the age limit on this game, he said “16, but it’s ok his dad is with him”, this kid was about 12. Apart from being concerned that a 12 yr old was playing a 16 rated game at Expo, it’s that MoH:WF will be the new “KID’s COD” game to play if mum / dad buy’s it for them. Does this mean that MoH will become infested with youngster’s and it may become the great game I want after BF3, but I won’t play it because of this ? We’ll see soon enough. If you’re not keen on BF3 then you won’t like MoH:WF either. The gameplay is in no way comparable to any COD game, and certainly not like BF3 either. Slicker’s & Monkum’s didn’t come off this one with a buzz.
Monkum’s and Me
Monkum’s tried his hand at the next reincarnation of Tombraider, at the request of his daughter. As we spectated, and he played. I thought wow, this has come on a bit. This game, as like many others at Expo looked fantastic, the cinematic’s and gameplay flowed as they do now with some great immersion in the game coming as standard. The level Monkum’s played was the demo as seen at the recent E3, the Hunt level, where Lara has to find food, shelter and warmth to survive, while searching for survivors of the shipwreck. Both Slickers and I commented that it looked good, but Lara at one point was shivering, and we said that it wasn’t real enough as her nipples weren’t even hard !! For me it had a sort of Uncharted feel to it, which isn’t a bad thing, as Uncharted is still one of the best game’s on the PS3. If you’re a Tombraider Uncharted fan you will love this when it is released in Spring 2013.
While moving about Expo we noted some going’s on with the odd random Zombie making an appearance :
That guy look’s like he will sh*t his pant’s.
The Zombies were there for Resident Evil 6 :
You will notice in the background of the picture above Aliens Colonial Marines. We never tried this one out as it was on PC only and we didn’t fancy looking silly while trying to use a mouse and a keyboard ! We did spot these there though :
What we did notice while watching others play, was that it did look good ! The Xenomorph’s were awesome on-screen, and a bit scary.
This guy popped up amongst the crowd, and we found him !! Looking at him I bet his real name is Wally too ! (The guy on the left has some f*cking scary eyes as well.)
We had a go at the XBOX equivalent of Gran Turismo, Forza Horizon. This game is the XBOX car game to beat on this platform. This version comes not long after Forza 4 was released late last year. The demo gifted you a drive in the Dodge Viper ST10, not my first choice of car to try I admit, but Monkum’s and I managed a respectable 4’th and 2’nd place. This for me will be a definite purchase, and one away from an FPS as something different and fun, hopefully my XBOX buddies will feel the same. (Peer pressure works on the darkside too!!)
OOH look, a NUN with a Gun …. and Hitman himself (47) . Hitman Absolution
EVE DUST 514
Monkum’s tried his hand at Dust 514 (stylized as EVE: DUST 514) it’s an upcoming free to play console-based FPS set within the Eve Universe, and developed by CCP Games. At first sight the game looks good enough to have on your HDD as a bit of fun, but if you want to progress in this game you will have to part with “real” money to purchase the required goodies to level up.
We also saw this guy wandering the show floor :
This next episode in the Halo franchise is of course an xbox exclusive so we didn’t give this one a try, but check this out :
This was also at Expo but we didn’t get on it :
I was stopped from taking any more pictures……
The biggest suprise of EGXP : FarCry 3
We queued up to play this one as again, I fancied having some hands on time from watching all those teaser video’s on Youtube. We played about 6 mins of what appeared to be the opening level of the game, but here’s what makes this game different. We all played the same level in our own way. This game is “Open World” so you can approach this game in whatever style you wish and your actions will have consequences on the way you play. I grabbed a car and drove to the checkpoint, Monkum’s and Slickers did something they wanted. At one point I was attacked by a wild Goat and fired off a couple of shots to put it down, but this attracted un-friendlies and I ended up in a fire fight. When we all came off the game, Slickers said ” That was good, I might have to get that”. FarCry 3 is a fantastic looking game on any modern TV, but above all it will give countless hours of entertainment while you complete the many tasks available. There is 4 player online Co-op as well.
Also at Expo we ventured into the Retro games area where memories of consoles past came flooding back. The BBC Micro, the ZX Spectrum and many others were there to prompt some childhood memories of hours lost to our then, console.
Other games at Expo this year included : F1 2012, F1 Race Stars, LBP Karting, Dishonored and many more. We weren’t able to play all of them but what we did see, whatever your gaming tastes the remainder of this year and into next is looking good, with some real great games on the horizon.
F1 Race Stars
After a long day walking around and eating a £ 4.50 pasty…Don’t ask ! A good day was had by all. Hopefully next year the ACOG contingent will be far greater.
Til next time