Eurogamer Expo 2013: Ten Ton Hammer Awards
2013 was a bustling show that had dozens
upon dozens of games on show. Some were popular, some less so but when
down to it, there are always some games which stand out for one reason
another. After a good night’s rest and plenty of thought,
below is a list of
the best and worst that the show had to offer as well as some curve
really weren't expecting to be anything special.
of Show – Titanfall
Without question one of the finest games I've played in years and the king of the show floor. Polished with slick presentation and incredible gameplay, Titanfall stood out from the moment you sat through the tutorial video. The drama of ejecting from a mech cockpit as you're fired 500 meters into the air only to traverse. With Battlefield 4 showing next to it, the two products couldn't be further apart in terms of modernisation. May cannot come soon enough.
Use of Piano – Doom
possibly the most hilarious, surreal moment
of the entire show is seeing someone play Doom on a piano. With piano
determining movement (strafing, turning, using and switching weapons)
it was a
comical endeavour that served to entertain the crowds. The tunes
playing might not have been pleasant on the ears, but it drew huge
left everyone smiling. What we're now waiting for is for someone to
score that accurately moves you around the level, from start to finish,
killing all enemies. That would be something special.
Charming – Tearaway
Papercraft taken to a whole new level, the premise of the game – please bear with me – is that the protagonist is to deliver a message. Although the demo didn't go into too much detail, your mission is to aid him in this in a beautifully crafted world. From the droplets of rain to the music, all of it was wonderfully presented. The hand crafted aesthetic is instantly appealing and charming.
Impressive Queue – Pokémon X and Y
one of Nintendo's biggest franchise (if not
the biggest) I'm still in disbelief at the fact they only had 3 DS that
could play it on. With queues in excess of 2 hours (unsurprisingly) it
deserved better from Nintendo. Thankfully for them, the game looks and
brilliantly and was well worth the queuing time.
Unexpected – Framed
This is a game that is hard to explain. Played on IOS or Android, you aid an individual escaping a scenario. To help him, you rearrange a series of panels of a comic strip to ensure he escapes each “page” successfully. For example, one puzzle sees you running down corridors to which you rearrange the exit doors that the protagonist uses to escape. Some panels feature police officers who are intent on stopping you, but if arranged incorrectly will ensure your demise. With great animation and visuals, it deserves a look.
Wanted T-Shirt Award
seems to be getting plenty of mentions here today and rightfully so. I
count at the amount of people asking for T-Shirts only for the staff
the lines unfortunately having none to give. We can forgive Respawn
Entertainment for that. Considering the queue size minus the cotton
settle for no T-Shirt if it means a fantastic product.
Forgettable – Watchdogs
Lauded as the game of the show in the official Eurogamer 2013 programme, Watchdogs just misses the mark. With an approach to hacking involving nothing more than pressing square, there's very little here in the way of interaction of innovation. Appearing more as a re-skinned Assassins Creed than an original entry, the mechanics and play were just unexciting. The crowds and I quickly moved along.
of Indie – Xenolith
in graphical style to Comet Crash by
Pelfast on PS3, Xenolith sees you pilot a shape-modifying ship. With 3
available to transform into (triangle, square and hexagon) the object
game mode I played was to match your ship shape to the incoming enemies
projectiles. Match incorrectly and your shield takes damage before you
eventually die. Match correctly and you'll score combo points.
wonderfully presented, Xenolith kept me going back for more.
MMOG – WildStar
Although traditional in its structure, WildStar is a charming and polished entry into the genre. With fantastic animations and charming race designs, I really hope it does well. The humour is genuinely funny and the game world expansive and deserving to be explored. I do have some concerns about its quest structure, but I'd be willing to forgive it for that when everything else seems so good. With raid content (so desperately lacking in the genre) it has a strong framework for those seeking something more hardcore.
Pointless Demonstration – Driveclub
only pre-alpha code available, it looked
rough and was not worth public consumption. In light of recent footage
clearly have a newer build. This is no stab at Evolution but it really
going to sell itself against the likes of Need for Speed Rivals and
Forza 5 (we
suspect Sony pushed this onto the show floor). On that premise, why
bring it to
the show floor?
Local Coop – Android Assault Cactus
A twin-stick shooter with 4 female assault androids in morphing arenas with waves of enemies, it’s all about blowing things up and chaining combos. The game is full of personality and has some seriously solid animations and sounds. An Alpha demo is available on Steam right now and is well worth a look for anyone who likes score based bullet-hell.
Awkward Booth Placement – Battlefield 4
crowds being forced to scream for T-Shirts or
being stood centimetres away from a 42” TV to play the game
(to say it made
your eyes blur was an understatement), Battlefield 4 felt generic and
predictable. Graphically unimpressive (we weren't allowed to take
screenshots) and unfortunately for them, being sat next to the debut
Respawn Entertainment was never going to end well. Titanfall was a
game ideas over marketing, new tech and IP familiarity. With queues
of Battlefield 4, it's clear where player interests lie.
Disappointment – The Elder Scrolls Online
In need of significant polish and improvements in almost all areas, The Elder Scrolls Online was a product I was giddy to play but one that left me bitterly disappointed. With ropey combat and a strange mix of MMOG gameplay coupled to Skyrim, it's hard to know where exactly this product sits. Although the quest system plays well, it isn't enough to hold it together at this time. Here's hoping the build on display at Eurogamer is way behind the internal version.