E3 2018 Impressions - Electronic Arts

Publisher Electronic Arts' E3 conference was a disappointing start to the weeks journey. With only a few high points, the hour long presentation was padded out with redundant arrangements.

Battlefield V

From EA DICE, an action packed multiplayer trailer was unveiled for Battlefield V. Similar to previous titles in the franchise, the game looks absolutely gorgeous, perfectly emulating the horrors of war. For many players, there's a lot to look forward to in its campaign, revamped Operations, and insane destructible maps.

While the game seemed fun, it's not interesting when everything shown in the trailer is incredibly cinematic. The best part about Battlefield multiplayer is its unscripted insanity. It would've been nice to see a natural multiplayer trailer, one that feels more akin to what the franchise is known for.

On the other hand, an interaction at the end of the trailer beckons some questions. Is it a hint at the game's campaign? Perhaps there will be a narrative driven multiplayer mode? I'm not sure, but I'm pretty excited to see what EA DICE reveals.

Additionally, EA once again wastes the audiences time with five minutes of discussion preceding a two minute trailer. Unfortunately, this happens with every announcement at the conference.

EA Sports

EA dedicated a huge chunk of the conference to their sports games—FIFA, NBA Live, and Madden. While they were all revealed and discussed, the trailers for some of these titles were underwhelming.

When Madden 18's E3 trailer previewed a more personal and story-driven campaign, many believed that would be the intention of future titles. However, Madden 19's reveal trailer showcased a simple football game, narrated by a man with a very deep voice. Although dedicated fans will purchase the title either way, nothing seemed different about this latest installment, and there's no reason for new players to care. 

However, it's pretty interesting to see that Madden is coming to PC for the first time in over ten years.

On the other hand, NBA Live 19's trailer was significantly better. By showing many different stages, various ways to customize your character, and a hint at some kind of a story, there's reason for newer fans to play.

FIFA 19's reveal trailer was generic, clearly directed at fans of the series. It didn't showcase anything significantly different, but it was cinematic enough to keep my attention. With attempts at inspiring narration and back to back clips of excited players, the game's trailer wasn't bad.

Regardless, all three of these trailers are made worse by awkward discussions and interviews. EA has a talent at making even the most intriguing games seem tedious with obnoxious exposition taking up 80 percent of their conference.

Unravel Two

Thankfully, EA's conference was made bearable with an adorable trailer for Unravel Two. The franchises newly added multiplayer looks wonderful, as it seems to strike a lovely balance between cute and difficult. Creative platforming, along with the enchanting music, got me excited for the game's release. However, EA blew the audience away, revealing that Unravel Two had already been released. This was without a doubt the best part of their conference, as it revealed a promising title and immediately put it in our hands.

Additionally, it's the only time where the preceding discussion was entertaining. This has a lot to do with Martin Sahlin's genuine love for his game. By the end of his talk, he seemed so thankful for his opportunity to work on the title, and it was quite heartwarming.

Sea of Solitude

EA's second indie title, Sea of Solitude, seems like an intriguing attempt at a visually stimulating adventure game. It puts the player in the shoes of a woman searching for her humanity, and the trailer takes the audience through the many environments and entities she'll encounter.

It certainly has the potential to be an impactful experience, as it looks absolutely gorgeous. Besides from its visuals, I'm curious what the game will play like. It could be anywhere from a platformer to an exploration game, only time will tell.

Anthem

With Anthem's announcement at last year's E3, a lot of excitement has been surrounding it. As BioWare showcased a lot more gameplay, Anthem proves itself to be as gorgeous as possible. It's hard to match the incredible world design that the title has to offer, but the gameplay seemed as underwhelming as it did last year.

This has a lot to do with its simple structure, as it seemed to revolve around the bullet-sponge gameplay we see in Destiny and The Division. These two titles had similar excitement surrounding them, both with gorgeous visuals and the promise of an incredible experience. However, these two titles weren't received particularly well, and Anthem exudes a similar aura. Trailers made them seem incredible, but once people played them, they were underwhelmed.

I'm worried that Anthem will feature a gorgeous but hollow world with a disappointing combat system. A lot of what we've seen of Anthem seemed promising, but I'm certainly staying cautious until its release.

Command and Conquer: Rivals

Perhaps the worst part of the conference was Command and Conquer: Rivals being shown on stage by two professional real-time strategy game players. While this may sound exciting, Rivals is a very simple phone game. Watching this made me realize how much I want a full Command and Conquer game, and I hope that Rivals' announcement is a hint at this possibility.

Origin Access Premier

EA announced a subscription service that would allow PC players access to every new title they release. Additionally, the service will provide players with a catalog of many of their previous games. Players can also stream these games on their phones and other devices, which seems too good to be true, but time will tell. Overall, this announcement is pretty exciting, as it's a good way to access a number of games.

Verdict

Overall, EA's conference sets the bar low for the rest of E3. It won't be hard for any other presentation to top this one, as it felt like a gigantic waste of time for everyone involved. What could've been a 15 minute presentation was padded out to be over an hour long with pointless interviews and repetitive speeches.