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Game Time E3 Thoughts: Bethesda


E3 is all about hype. It's a marketing team's dream going in and going out. That will never change. One thing that did change this year was the perceived "winner" of this year's video gaming throwdown.

This is the first of a very general breakdown of what we saw at this year's conference and my thoughts on them. I will speak in more detail on the conference with my gaming friends on an episode of Toons Game Time later this week. Weigh in with your own thoughts in the comment section, on facebook or by emailing us at ToonsShow@gmail.com (or just use the contact form in the sidebar of this very page).

My thoughts on Microsoft, EA, Ubisoft and Sony's presentations will come as I have time to type them up. These links will go active below as I get the time to finish them up:


Microsoft | EA | Ubisoft | Sony

Enjoy.

- Brian

Bethesda

This year, for the first time ever, Bethesda put on their own conference at E3, and overall, it was a great thing. Of all the presentations, this was the gold standard, for me, in terms of presentation. But it wasn't perfect, for sure.

Bethesda started out strong by presenting Doom 4. Doom 3 came out all the way back in 2004 so this title is a pretty big deal. Further, Bethesda and id Software did the smartest thing they could do: stick with what made Doom popular in the first place. Of course, they added a whole bunch of features like multiplayer and level creation, but at its heart, it never strays from what it is.


To the people complaining about the gratuitous violence in the gameplay footage, I say this: It's Doom. And it's violent. And it's gruesome. And you don't have to play it.

From there, Bethesda introduced Bethesda.net which will be their very own gaming experience hub. This, while not expected, was not a surprise, either. Companies seem to be making every possible move to control their properties and that's what this feels like to me.

Next up was Battlecry and the announcement of a world-wide beta. Meh. Let's be honest: This game looked like shit. And it looked like the kind of shit that wouldn't have been a hit two generations of consoles ago. The graphics were choppy and very polygon-y.

Moving on.

Dishonored 2
Dishonored 2 and the news of its presence at E3 was leaked ahead of the presentation but it looked good. By "good" I mean as good as a CGI cutscene trailer with no actual gameplay can look. In that way, it looked GREAT. I want to see more, but I want to see gameplay. The female protagonist had some pretty sweet moves and weapons and her counterpart was appropriately brooding and had some General Greivous level robotic guardians that were pretty cool in design.

We'll see.

Of course, the team then announced the upcoming Dishonored: Definitive Edition which was leaked months ago. The original game plus all DLC. Pretty standard fare.

Seemingly out of place was Bethesda's next presentation of Elder Scrolls Legends. Maybe it's just me, but I don't care to see another card-based Magic: The Gathering or Hearthstone type game with characters I don't necessarily care about that sort of resemble some of the characters I've seen in games. I didn't even want to see those two games, though, so maybe I'm biased. I'll stick with Pokemon, thank you.

Then came Todd Howard and his presentation of Fallout 4. This was the best 4. It was the Fantasticest 4. It made me happy. In the pants.

The Fallout story seems to take a slightly different turn this time around with the protagonist being the sole-survivor of Vault 111 in the Boston area. It still feels very much the same as Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas and that's a good thing, but with the added aspect of trying to rebuild the character's community, a revamped recycle/crafting system and weapons modifications, there should be plenty of new stuff to fiddle around with.

There's just so much to look forward to for this game and to try to cover it all here would frankly defeat the purpose of this particular post. Just watch this and be happy. In the pants.


Oh. A real, working Pip-Boy (in a manner of speaking) is available in a Collector's Edition of the game. Want. Nay. NEED.

And, further, there will be no need to wait for the game, which will be released in November of this year.

Before closing out the show, Howard - who is hands down the best presenter at E3 this year -  also revealed the now-available mobile game Fallout Shelter. Look for a review of that game on this site in the near future.

As I said above, as far as first attempts go, Bethesda went yard compared to nearly everybody else. Beyond the "games only" content that they were able to bring - and since that's all they do, it was easy for them to stick to games - their general presentation was just far more relaxed and natural than any of the other presentations we saw at E3 this year. It wasn't without flaw, but it didn't need to be either.

They have to be happy and fans of Bethesda's past work have to be happy as well.
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