E3 2014, Featured

Hands-On Preview: Titanfall Expedition DLC, EA Sports UFC & Battlefield: Hardline

by on June 12, 2014 4:12 AM 0

EA had a few playable games at their E3 booth that I got to check out. I didn’t play enough of them to be able to write about each individually so I’ve put together this compilation hands-on instead.

Titanfall

titanfall4

This was actually my very first time playing this game. It was a new map which took place in a swamp. The game mode’s objective was for the players to hunt and kill a marked target. The map was pretty complicated due to all of the trees and ruins found within it. The ruins themselves served as good places to hide from the Titans or to ambush unsuspecting foes.

I stayed with my team during the beginning but then decided to just do my own thing to explore and get a feel for the controls. Like, I said, this was my first time playing it and my time was limited so I tried to take in as much as possible. For the most part, our teams were pretty evenly split. I got to kill a fair number of them but whenever I would become the marked man I’d die within seconds.

The controls were really nice and at no point did I ever find myself fighting against them. I’m not to great with FPS games but this one made me feel like a pro since it was easy to play. Piloting the Titan was pretty cool too but I never did so for long stretches since other players would keep jumping on its back. The only negative part of the experience was that I didn’t know how to parkour or how to kill Titans. Other than that, I liked it and see why people like this game so much.

EA Sports UFC

EA Sport UFC demo cropped

This is easily one of the best looking games I’ve ever seen in my life. The gameplay videos I’ve seen do a good job of showing us how nice this game looks but actually seeing it in person makes you truly appreciate the visual marvel that it is.

There is a lot I could say about the graphics but I guess the most direct way I can sum them up is that there is a lot of subtlety in them. The way muscles move under the skin, how limbs graze upon one another when a blow doesn’t connect, the blood that flows from deep wounds, all of it shows just how impressive the technology behind this game is.

As for the actual game itself? Let’s just say that it has a very steep learning curve. I played with another guy who hadn’t played a UFC game in years and we both didn’t really know what to do so we button mashed a lot. A representative saw this and gave us some tips, particularly about how to grapple.

Grappling is probably the most complex thing in the game. Once you initiate or are caught in a grapple you mainly use the right analog stick to control what your character does. You have to make half circle motions in specific directions in order make holds or to get out of them. This applies to fighters who are standing or on the ground. When an opponent is caught in a hold that could potentially make him tap out there is a sort of QTE that appears on screen. The one in a submission must push the right or left analog sticks in a specific direction to break out of the hold. Conversely, the one who is doing the submission has to push the corresponding analog stick in the opposite direction to maintain the hold.

Although this is a hard game to figure out, mastery of it will make for one hell of an experience. I can imagine this being played at EVO since it is so deep and nuanced. This game has the potential to be huge so I’m going to keep an eye on how it’s doing.

And before I finish this up: NO. I did not get to play as Bruce Lee.

Battlefield: Hardline

Battlefield Hardline

This game was the show ender for EA’s press event and with good reason. It takes the action that the series is known for and transplants it into an urban setting. This was a show highlight so I wanted to get some time with it.

Since this is Battlefield, it was fairly complicated. This series doesn’t have the arcade shooter feel of others in the genre and is instead more strategic. This is not a series that you can pick up and play so it took me a while to get my bearings.

I didn’t join the match from the beginning and picked up where someone else left off. I had a sniper rifle and a small side arm… two weapons I don’t really like to use in multiplayer. I was killed a few times and became frustrated that I couldn’t use an assault rifle or shotgun. Thankfully, I was able to switch out my class and picked one with an assault rifle for a main weapon and uzi for a side arm. After I had these I did better.

The objective of the game mode I played had us stealing from a bank vault and transporting what we stole to a helicopter. Our opponents (the cops) didn’t make this easy and we were thwarted in our attempt almost every time. I jumped into a helicopter at one point and tried to fly it but I stayed in the air all of 3 seconds before crashing into a building. Our team ended up losing the match.

After I was finished, I talked to one of the reps and asked if this game was coming to last-gen consoles. I thought it would be impossible given the amount of environmental destruction that can happen. It actually is coming to the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 but he said that they’ll have to do a lot of “smoke and mirrors” type stuff to simulate the destruction found on the current-gen and on PC.

The game looks like a lot of fun and should hopefully help the franchise regain faith from gamers who were disappointed with Battlefield 4.

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