E3’11: Thoughts from Ubisoft’s Media Briefing

Timely as ever, I am pretty late to this press conference recap party so I’m gonna do this in short order for the stifled attention spans of us all. Just some quick thoughts and bullet points from Ubisoft’s Press-a-ma-thing.

Mr. Caffeine was the worst MC ever, even worse than Jamie Kennedy, but let’s not dwell on that. Michel Ancel’s demonstration of Rayman Origins has me reinvigorated and ready to play. The appearance of original Rayman characters was great too, I just wonder how the whole user-created angle is going. Now coming as an on-disc release it seems like this will be a pretty self-contained game without going into the equally stunning looking Ubiart stuff they showed last year. I hope some of that is available to play in some form or another.

In all instances I would readily play the ’25 years ago’ versions of the games they showed as motion graphics that topped most segments, just sayin’. This ‘25 Years of Ubisoft‘ art that popped up in Rayman Origins was also really slick. I need a hi-res version for wallpaper, stat!

Driver: San Francisco looked great but I’m not sure any of that was in-game footage. It seemed like it but really all I need are hills, cars and cops. The Tanner-in-a-coma, car-jumping angle wasn’t featured but even as gimmicky as it is, I hope it’s still in the final product. The Far Cry 3 reveal has, so far, been the most exciting thing I’ve seen out of E3. I wasn’t expecting it at all after the divisive Far Cry 2 but am glad to see more jungles, more stealth and more ridiculously brutal takedowns. The crazy guy, stalking psycho angle could make for a fun element, I just hope I don’t have to constantly be running from him the whole game.

Does Quentin Tarrantino know they ripped of Inglorious Basterds? That’s all I’m gonna say about the ‘proof of concept’ CG trailer for Brothers in Arms: Furious 4. Not too interested in that. I love how Tintin (the game and the source material) look! I couldn’t tell you anything more about Tintin other than to say ‘hey, that’s Tintin’ but it sure looks good.

Ghost Recon has a great user interface but I really couldn’t possibly care less about ever playing any of them. THQ, please take note of the slick UI for a future Full Spectrum Warrior, thanks. Trackmania 2 and ManiaPlanet seem nuts and something I’ve never gotten much into.

As cookie-cutter and derivative as Raving Rabbids Alive & Kicking looks, I love those little guys and will always give them a pass. There are at least a dozen Kinect games that have already done the whack-a-mole thing but these screaming lunatics (both the guys on stage and the Rabbids) get a ‘quick, get on my list while no one’s looking’ OK for shear lunacy. Just Dance 3 and Rocksmith are both kind of appealing music games but ones I’m not sure I’ll ever get to play. For those who already own a guitar it’s great but for me it would require hundreds of dollars in equipment… and leather pants. Your Shape: Fitness Evolved is one of my favorite Kinect games and one of the few exer-games I’ve ever stuck with. So yes, I’m really looking forward to what they’re doing with the ‘2012’ edition and its awesome UI.

I’m currently knee-deep in Assassins Creed: Brotherhood and finding it hard to slog through another massive collect-athon that focuses on Ezio’s adventures. I loved Assassins Creed 2 but this seems like a colossal retread with a character and time period I’m getting tired of. Seeing AC: Revelations takes the madness several steps farther with giant chains, boat-mounted flamethrower cannons, and decidedly unstealthy Quick Time Events. I’m only in it for the Desmond/Altair angle and will begrudgingly wade through this just to get on with Assassins Creed 3.

Far Cry 3, Rayman and Your Shape are my biggest takeaways from Ubisoft’s conference. The stuff they didn’t show — Call of Juarez and From Dust — are also high on my list so while most of the world may laugh it off, I thought it was a pretty good showing.


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