Welcome to E3 2019! Alright, let’s get stuck in:
Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order
First up, we have a new gameplay trailer, showing the protagonist Cal on the planet of Kashykk, attempting to jail break some Wookies from from an imperial compound, under the command of Rogue One’s Saw Garrera. In this demo, we see:
- Travel: Plenty of Parkour, including wall running, climbing and Indiana Jones style swinging.
- Force Abilities: Your force abilities play a large part of how you’ll fight and traverse the levels. These include Force Push, Pull and Slow: A mechanic that allows you to slow down objects and enemies around you. Some neat applications of these powers are shown, such as Force-Slowing a Stormtrooper and his blaster fire, before force pulling him, and dragging him to the path of his own blaster fire. Another application is how Cal Force-Slows a large metal fan so that he can get through it with out becoming a Jedi Fillet.
- Combat: The lightsaber combat seems very measured and strategical, but contains nothing we haven’t seen before. You can block, parry, deflect blaster fire as well as stab and slash, using force powers as you go. UI seems to be very minimal, with a single white line above enemies representing health, with your own health in the lower left hand corner. In addition to this, a small red dot indicates who you’re locked onto. That said, this is alpha gameplay footage, so this may all change before the final release.
Respawn CEO Vince Zampella: “We want the combat to feel really good for people to go in and be able to be a part of that, size up the enemies where things feel right, and feels really good.”
- Companion: Your droid, BD-1 or Buddy Droid 1, seems to play a significant role in the actual gameplay. BD-1 will carry your health packs, which you can use whenever you want, but you will apparently be defenseless when you do this, so you must think about when to heal and when not to. BD-1 can also scan the world for lore entries and can “slice”/hack into systems not dis-similarly to R2-D2.
- Enemies: A few enemies were revealed, such as basic Stormtroopers, flamethrower units, Purge Troopers (Stormtroopers with energy-charged staffs). There seems like there will be giant alien spiders as well with ranged attacks that slow and trap Cal. Well, at least on Kashykk. So perhaps we can expect other localized enemies? The gameplay trailer finishes by teasing fights with Imperial droids, gatling-gun Stormtroopers, and an AT-ST.
It has been confirmed that the game contains no light or dark side choices for the player, and that Cal’s character as a Jedi Padawan is set in stone, and it was teased that the game will make another appearance at Microsoft’s E3 Press Conference.
Apex Legends had a few announcements to make with the impending release of Season 2: Battlecharge coming on July 2nd, so I have those here for you:
- New Weapon: the L-Star, a Plasma EMG weapon that should apparently taken from one of the previous Titanfall games. It has a gold tier rarity, It drops in care packages, and was marveled at by one of the conference hosts for being able to break doors.
- New Event: Legendary Hunt, which opens a new queue and series of challenges that allow players to earn in game rewards such as exclusive skins and upgraded battlepasses. All battlepass owners will earn the “Honored Prey” weapon skin, and upon reaching level 15 on a battle pass, players will earn the “Legendary Terror” skin. A double xp weekend was announced for this weekend and exclusive items were said to be rolling out into the in-game shop.
- New Mode: A ranked mode was announced with 6 tiers for players to advance through., from bronze to apex predator. At the end of season 2, players will be rewarded depending on what tier they finished on.
- Battlepass Changes: The battlepass will change it’s challenges to persist after their assigned days and weeks, so that players can catch up on daily and weekly quests in one sitting. They are also getting rid of badges and badge trackers to streamline the leveling process. Apparently, battlepass owners are being given 4 legendary skins and 2 weapon skins at the start of season 2.
- New Legend: A new legend called Wattson was announced. She’s a french quantum physicist, who helped build the arena with her father. She’s a support role based around fortifying areas and is described as a more of a “RTS Style” character.
- Wattson’s Abilities: She can place electrified fences, using up to 12 nodes, and these fences notify your team of intruders. Her ultimate, Ultimate Interception Pylon, is a tower that shoots down incoming projectiles and charges the team’s shield. Cooldowns become shorter the closer to the pylon you are, and it is a permanent structure until it is destroyed. Watson’s Passive, gives her a full Ultimate charge when she uses an Ultimate Accelerance.
- Finally, a weird giant eyeball was waved off as something to look for in Kings Cannon, within season 2.
A few bits of new content was announced:
- New Maps: Alsundan, a North African desert coast, with a focus on land and air vehicles. Plus: Marita, a new Greek village on a mountain, with a focus on infantry units. These are coming in June and July respectively. More maps were teased for Chapter 4: Defying the Odds, with an infantry focus. They also announced that Operation: Underground, a map from Battlefield 3, would be added as a new map later in the year.
- New Theater Of War: Chapter 5 was teased, with a few confirmations. It is going to be set in the pacific, with a focus on the conflict between the US and Japan. Iwa Jima is apparently returning to Battlefield as a playable map in this chapter, as well as new guns and “amphibious units”. More information is teased for later this year.
Apologies in advance, so much of it was filled with sport jargon that I hardly understood what they were saying, So I may have missed some information, or perhaps gone into too much detail. I just don’t know, but here is what I think I understood:
- Volta Mode: A new trailer was shown, teasing Volta Football, a mode for Fifa that will have street soccer making an appearance in the title. Players will be able to customize their character’s look and outfit., or play as licensed players and teams.
- “Football Intelligence”: New “Football Intelligence” systems is a “feature set” that gives you more “attacking and defending tools” in 1v1 moments “on the ball”. However, “off the ball”, they’re giving “more time and space on the ball” to dribblers through a “rearchected game-flow”. They’re also adding new ball physics that “elevates intensity”.
- “Decisive Moments”: They’re adding “composed finishing” that allows for more “More clinical and consistent shooting”, as well as strafe dribbling, controlled tackling which seems to be reliant on timing, and gameplay additions to penalty and free kicks. Aiming is supposedly more accessible and gives you “full control of the spin you apply to the ball”.
FIFA 20 will be released on September 27th, with EA access members getting it early on the 19th. More information was teased for July and August on Gameplay, Career Mode, Pro Clubs, “Ultimate Team” and Volta Football.
Was it obvious I don’t play sports?
A large break between games was made, in which EA announced a charity drive against online harassment, with a plea for donations on their website here. This was done in a very stilted, awkward pre-recorded video. Following that, Anthem’s Lead Producer Ben Irving announced that the new public testing phase for the Cataclysm Update was now live for everyone.
MADDEN NFL 20
Oh god. More sports. Well, I have in my notes written:
- Single-Player: A new single-player campaign called Face Of The Franchise with a customized character.
- “Scenario Engine”: A “Scenario Engine” with “Dynamic Challenges” that I think is a weird marketing way of saying weekly challenges?
- “Playbooks”: New “Playbooks” with new “Run-Pass Options” and team formations.
- Ultimate Missions, is a menu that tells you how to earn items? I think?
- X-Factor Abilities: okay, so there’s zone abilities and superstar abili- Oh god, I’m gonna have to do a sub-list, bare with me:
- Zone Abilities: These abilities are what I’ve likened to Madden’s equivalent of Supers. These are special abilities that players must be “in the zone” to be able to perform. You get players “in the zone” by completing specific objectives. An example of a Zone ability is being able to catch a ball from 10 yards away… 10 yards is a little over 9 meters.
- Superstar Abilities: other, similar abilities, but the only difference is that they’re always active, and are only really used in specific circumstances.
- Signature Animations: New signature animations are being added to licensed players to make them more unique and recognizable.
- New Mechanics: A new “Scramble” mechanic and “Pumpfake” mechanic are being added.
- Overall Ratings: New overall rating scores are being attributed to licensed players. This is apparently a big deal.
- A closed beta is going ahead on June 14th through to June 16th.
Phew. It’s over.
The Sims 4
A couple of new DLCs were announced:
- Island Living: A expansion pack called “Island Living”, which includes New Outfits, Character Customization Options, a playable mermaid race, “open water” gameplay, interactions with dolphins, New Jobs as a conservationist, life guard and fisher. There are also ancestral spirits, new furniture, decor and beach houses. This announcement was accompanied by a trailer, showing the new setting of Sulani Island.
- Pride: New gay pride items will be rolled out across modern Sims titles, starting on June 18th.
- Both the “Moschino Stuff Pack” and “Realm Of Magic Game Pack” were teased for later this year.
And that was all for EA’s E3 press conference. You can watch IGN’s stream here.
Image Source: Screenshot From EA’s Press Conference, Streamed By IGN