The lights are on
E3 2014 might have lacked the exciting hardware debuts and surprise game reveals of the past few years, but there was no shortage of amazing games playable on the show floor. Titles like Batman: Arkham Knight and Assassin’s Creed Unity finally demonstrated what the new-gen systems are capable of, while games like Destiny and Evolve provided more tantalizing glimpses into the future of multiplayer gaming. Here are our E3 2014 Best in Show Awards.
BATMAN: ARKHAM KNIGHT
Rocksteady’s final entry in the Arkham series is built from the ground up for new-gen consoles, and it shows. Our hands-on demo wowed us with crisp visuals, a massive open world, and seamless gameplay integration of the Batmobile that makes driving the super-powered vehicle as fun as we dreamed it would be. Mix in the smooth, combo-centric combat that has come to define the brawler genre in recent years, and it’s no surprise that the Caped Crusader won our Best Action award for the second year in a row.
For many gamers, Tim Schafer’s comical LucasArts titles epitomize the adventure game genre. Even though Grim Fandago wasn’t on the show floor, the mere announcement of an HD update to the 1998 classic for the PlayStation 4 and Vita was enough to get fans cheering. Here’s hoping the new deal between Disney and Double Fine leads to some of Schafer’s other humorous hits getting another shot in the spotlight.
MORTAL KOMBAT X
Mortal Kombat has been a staple of the fighting genre since the early ‘90s, and the newly revealed tenth installment proves there’s still plenty of excitement for the franchise’s gruesome fatalities. The game features new bone-crunching X-Ray moves, ridiculous match-ending kills, and more original characters than any other roster in the series, ensuring Mortal Kombat X provides plenty of new blood to spray all over your opponents.
Bungie’s new sci-fi shooter series may not be what gamers expect from a traditional MMO, but fans who were lucky enough to participate in this past weekend’s closed Alpha understand our enthusiasm. Destiny seamlessly blends the single-player and multiplayer experience, allowing you to team up with friends or other random players while you level up, collect loot, and explore the ambitious galaxy Bungie is creating. Whether you’re tackling public events, handcrafted story missions, or competitive Crucible matches, Destiny is shaping up to be a worthy follow-up to the Halo series.
Balanced teams are so overrated. While most competitive shooters try to keep things fair by giving everyone access to the same items and abilities, Turtle Rock Studios is taking a decidedly different approach. Each playable character in Evolve features unique weapons and abilities, and the four-versus-one format demands completely different play styles and tactics from its participants. Despite all of the unknown variables at play, matches somehow still feel balanced – a testament to Turtle Rock’s expertise at crafting unique and engaging multiplayer experiences.
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