Nintendo E3 2014 Highlights
Unlike Sony and Microsoft, Nintendo decided to make its playful E3 2014 announcements on the web streaming details on new Wii U and 3DS games via a Digital Event. Here's our pick of the biggest talking points and most interesting new titles to look out for.
The Legend of Zelda Wii U
Nintendo has been drip-feeding information about a new Zelda game since E3 2011 and the latest details reveal that there has been a strong focus on creating a rich, detailed environment for the latest Zelda instalment. Unveiling a new trailer and screenshots, Link sadly won’t be roaming those open fields on the Wii U until 2015.
Watch the Legend of Zelda Wii U E3 2014 trailer
Starfox Wii U
Digging into the Super Nintendo and N64 archives, legendary game designer Shigeru Miyamoto teased a new Star Fox game and later confirmed that it is one of three special Wii U projects currently in the works. In the E3 demos at the show, gamers will be able to use the Wii U GamePad for a first person cockpit view and the TV screen for a the third person view. The built-in Gyroscope in the Nintendo’s controller will also allow you to look around and line up targets. There’s no concrete Starfox Wii U release date but it looks like we can expect to take to the skies once again sometime in 2015.
Watch the Starfox Wii U teaser trailer below
Amiibo is Nintendo’s answer to Skylanders
Heavily rumoured prior to the Digital Event, Reggie Fils-Aime confirmed that Nintendo is doing a Skylander by introducing a set of NFC enabled figurines which interact with games like Super Smash Bros, Mario Kart and new titles like Mario vs Donkey Kong.
Compatible with the Wii U GamePad and the 3DS via an additional peripheral, 10 of the Nintendo-themed figurines will launch initially this year with more tipped to land in 2015.
Here's a video to explain how the Amiibo figurines work
At the beginning of Nintendo’s Digital Event it claimed that it wasn’t going to show off any Mario games and clearly that was a tongue in cheek comment as the Italian plumber popped up in more than a few places including the potentially very fun-looking Mario Maker.
Essentially a 2D level-builder for the original Super Mario Bros, Wii U owners will be able to make their own levels dragging and dropping pipes or Goombas using the GamePad. You’ll be able to build your own Mario levels from 2015.
Xenoblade Chronicles X
After launching Xenoblade Chronicles on the Wii three years ago, the sci-fi RPG is set to resurface on the Wii U and will hopefully live up to the high standards set by one of the standout games from Nintendo’s last generation console.
Among the new features, you’ll be able to jump aboard weaponised mechs, roam the open world environments and enjoy the same slick combat system. Unfortunately, Wii U owners won’t be able to get their hands on it until 2015.
Watch the Xenoblade Chronicles X E3 2014 trailer below
Unveiled as one of several new Wii U games, Splatoon is a third-person shooter that’s all about multiplayer action. Featuring squid-like characters called Inklings, you’ll be able to compete in online four-on-four matches with the goal to protect your base and try to claim your opponents’ turf.
It’ll take advantage of the Wii U GamePad’s gyroscope to view the terrain and will display the entire map on the controller screen. Splatoon is coming to Nintendo’s new gen console in 2015.
Watch the Splatoon E3 2014 announcement trailer below
Super Smash Bros
Another one for the Wii U crew, Nintendo is going to let you put your own Mii characters into Super Smash Bros to battle against. Once you’ve got them in the game, you’ll be able to pick from three Mii fighter types. So whether you like close-up brawling style or swinging swords there’s up to 36 special moves to mix things up. Super Smash Bros is expected to land alongside the new Amiibo figurines in time for Christmas 2014.
Yoshi’s Wooly World
Brought to you by the same folks behind Kirby’s Epic Yarn, Yoshi is getting the same knitted treatment and it’s coming to the Wii U. Mario’s green dinosaur buddy will play in a side-scrolling world entirely made out of fabric that can be tangled, pulled and grabbed.
There’s a two-player mode so you can play co-op and here’s hoping it makes a better impression than Yoshi’s New Island did on the 3DS when Nintendo launches the wooly game in early 2015.
Sony PS4 E3 2014
Following Microsoft's lead, Sony packed its E3 2014 press conference with PS4 games slated for release before the end of 2014 and going into 2015. It did manage to find some time in the two-hour long show to talk about some new hardware and services that look set to make it over to the UK as well.
Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End
After teasing us with the shortest of trailers last year, Sony and the team at Naughty Dog has finally lifted the lid on the first PS4 Uncharted game with a more revealing trailer. Drake and Scully look set to reunite once again although we won't be able to see what they get up until 2015 when the game is set to hit PS4 consoles worldwide.
In other Naughty Dog-related news, critically acclaimed game The Last of Us will touch down on the PS4 next month with the remastered version landing on July 29th. As well as upgrading the visuals, The Last of Us Remastered will include access to the The Last of Us: Left Behind DLC and a host of weapon upgrades for the gritty single player campaign.
Watch the Uncharted 4: A Thief's End E3 2014 trailer
Destiny launching on PS4 first
Just as the Xbox One has cross platform titles landing on its console first, PS4 owners will be ahead of the queue to play Bungie’s sci-fi shooter when the Destiny beta goes live on July 17th. Additionally, a select few will also get access to a Destiny Alpha on June 12th.
To celebrate the launch of the game, Sony will also be launching a special edition Destiny PS4 bundle that will include a copy of the game, a white PS4 500GB console, white DualShock 4 controller and a 30-day free trial to PlayStation Plus to access the multiplayer mode. Expect to get your hands on this brightly hued PS4 from September 9th.
GTA 5 on PS4
Rockstar Games is bringing the open world fun to new-gen consoles and the PC and Sony got to make the announcement in its E3 press conference. Set to launch in the autumn, President and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Andrew House confirmed the news on stage and for those who picked the game up on a PS3 or Xbox 360 and didn’t finish the game, you’ll be able to continue progress on the new gen version.
Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain
After the arrival of Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes early this year, 2015 is when we get to see an aged Snake and the new Fox Engine in action for The Phantom Pain. The announcement trailer actually leaked ahead of its unveiling during Sony’s E3 press conference and shows off a noticeably haggard and bloodied Big Boss walking through a burnt down village.
You can watch the Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain video below
PlayStation TV coming to UK
Yes, Sony even found time to announce that its streaming set-top box, previously off limits to territories outside of Japan, is finally coming to Europe. PlayStation Vita TV is being re-named PlayStation TV and will let you stream PS4 games to another TV in your house.
Set to be priced around the £100 mark, it will however not be joined by PlayStation Now, the subscription based game streaming service which is set to launch in the US this Summer.
In other PS4 news…
Sony is planning to join Microsoft by creating its own original content with its first TV series entitled Powers arriving later this year. The show, based on the graphic novel series by Brian Michael Venice will get two seasons with the team behind The Walking Dead helping to put it all together.
PS4 owners who love sharing their favourite game goals and most brutal kills will soon be able to share and upload content directly to YouTube. Sony is hoping to add the one touch YouTube sharing functionality before the end of 2014.
Other PS4 announcements
Watch the entire PlayStation E3 2014 press conference video below for all of the announcements in full
Ubisoft E3 2014 Highlights
Far Cry 4
Ubisoft kicked off proceedings with the follow-up to arguably one of the games of 2012, Far Cry 3 with a CG trailer introducing the new location up in the snowy Himalayans. It was also our first opportunity to explore the identity of the twisted blonde haired villian that features so prominently on the game's front cover.
You can watch the Far Cry 4 opening 5 minutes video below
If you missed it from the Sony E3 2014 press conference here's a video showing off some Far Cry 4 gameplay revaling the option for two player online co-op play.
Tom Clancy’s The Division
Announced at Ubisoft’s E3 2013 press conference, the shooter set in bleak dystopian New York has been delayed until 2015 and to keep people interested, we have a new trailer to paint the set the depressing scene of a civilization that needs to be rebuilt.
Gameplay footage of the Division was shown off in Microsoft’s E3 2014 press conference revealing the tactical combat in the snowy open world environment. There’s still no firm news on a release date other than sometime next year but it’s shaping up to be one of the standout new gen games of 2015.
Watch Tom Clancy's The Division E3 2014 trailer
Another of the PS4 and Xbox One launch games that failed to show up last year, The Crew now has a November 11th US release date so we expect a UK arrival around that time too. The driving MMO game where as the name suggests you need to work in teams, will let you drive around the US with some missions to get across cities taking as long as two hours. The Crew closed beta opens on July 23rd and you can join up by visiting The Crew Beta sign up page.
Watch The Crew E3 2014 trailer
Assassin’s Creed: Unity
Microsoft already gave us a taster of the latest Assassin’s Creed instalment revealing in the process that there will be four player co-op online play. Ubisoft took the opportunity to show off some of the more in-depth co-op and single player mechanics in the live demo on stage including the improved free-running elements and the densely populated environments all set against the 18th Century Paris backdrop. Will Ubisoft be able to keep up with the demands of delivering an Assassin’s Creed game every year? We will have to wait until November 28th when it launches on the PS4, Xbox One and PC.
Watch Assasin's Creed: Unity E3 2014 single player gameplay video
Tom Clancy’s Rainbow 6: Siege
Saving this little surprise for last with CEO Yves Guillemot finally taking the stage, Rainbow Six Siege replaces the recently cancelled Rainbow 6: Patriots game. We got our first look at the multiplayer in action with a hostage scenario where a team needs to carry out a rescue and get out of the building alive. It’s going to run on a version of the Anvil Next game engine used in Assassin’s Creed and there will be co-op and single player campaign modes.
It’s launching on PS4, Xbox One and PC in 2015 and you can watch the Tom Clancy's Rainbow 6: Siege first look video from the Ubisoft press conference below.
In other Ubisoft game news…
For all of those living room body poppers, Just Dance 2015 is launching in the UK on October 24th with 40 new tracks including Pharrell Williams, John Newman and Calvin Harris. Ubisoft is also adding a new Just Dance Now iPhone and Android companion app where multiple users can dance to Just Dance tracks with any internet-connected TV screen.
The award for most uncomfortable Ubisoft game announcement and demonstration goes to Shape Up. Another fitness game that aims to gamify the experience of getting in shape, the Xbox One Kinect-friendly title sets up a host of challenges like a rhythm based piano game and a press up game where the more you do the bigger the objects on your back become in the game. It’s coming out in November if you want to shed some pounds in a more fun way.
Taking the audience through the full range of emotions, Valiant Hearts is a game that marks the 100th anniversary of the First World War. Brought to you by the teams behind Rayman Legends and Child of Light it tells the story of soldiers on the front line and will be released June 25th exclusively on the PS4 and PS3.
Valiant Hearts E3 2014 launch trailer
EA E3 2014 Highlights
This particular E3 surprise was spoiled when details leaked out weeks earlier. DICE has now firmed up some of the details in the Battlefield 4 follow-up, which is essentially a battle between cops and robbers. Split into single player campaign and multiplayer, the latter will see criminals try to rob banks and the cops to thwart their attempts.
The good news is that the Battlefield: Hardline closed beta is already open for PS4, PC and Xbox One and you can sign up and see if you make the cut at the Battlefield: Hardline beta homepage.
Watch Battlefield: Hardline E3 2014 Gameplay trailer below
New Mass Effect
Now we don’t know if it’s going to be called Mass Effect 4 but we do know that Bioware is working on a new instalment and the developer claims that the new game is "the chance to have a clean sheet". We do know that the new Mass Effect game will introduce a new set of characters and a new location in space to show off you intergalactic shooter skills.
Watch the Mass Effect E3 2014 announcement trailer below
Mirror’s Edge 2
Faith returns and EA promises to delve deeper into the female protagonist. There will be plenty of free-running as well of course. So much so that the team at DICE actually consulted Parkour runners to make the key game dynamic even more realistic this time round.
You can check out the Mirror’s Edge 2 E3 2014 video below
It wouldn’t be an EA E3 press conference if we didn’t get to see the new FIFA and David Rutter promises that this year’s instalment will have greater emotion. Players now have memories based on the context on the game, so think Cristiano Ronaldo throwing a hissy fit when his pleas for free-kicks are continually being waved away by the referee.
EA Sports is introducing a new ball physics system, more realistic-looking players and more lifelike crowds. A FIFA 15 release date has been slated for September for multiple platforms including the PS4 and Xbox One a few weeks after the new domestic season kicks off.
Criterion developing action sports game
The team best known for arcade racers Burnout and Need for Speed unveiled a currently unnamed first person game where there’s more than just cars to play with. Showing off early prototype footage, it looks like you’ll be able to step into a chopper, jump out of a plane in a wing suit and ride on quad bikes. Criterion says it has the Oculus VR headset in mind for the ambitious sounding game that looks like it’s one primed action sports enthusiasts.
For anyone still interested in Need for Speed, that’s coming back in 2015. Criterion hopes to reinvigorate the series by doing things a little differently.
Star Wars: Battlefront
After Disney closed down the LucasArts game division after its buyout and cancelling all the Stars War games in progress, we can still expect at least one game based on the Luke Skywalker and company from the people at DICE. Battlefront is still in the works and while there's no gameplay footage to salivate over, we did get to see the kind of lengths the developers are going to to re-create the environments from the original trilogy
by visiting original film locations.
You can watch the Star Wars Battlefront Official E3 2014 trailer below
Microsoft Xbox One E3 2014
Microsoft kicked off E3 2014 press conference proceedings and filled its time at the Galen Center in LA with trailers and gameplay footage from a raft of new Xbox One and Xbox 360 games. Here's our pick of the big new game announcements from Microsoft's E3 2014 press conference.
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare
Microsoft kicked off the show with gameplay footage from Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. The latest instalment in the hugely successful first person shooter franchise that is set in the year 2054 is expected to launch later this year and the good news for Xbox One users is that all downloadable content will be available first on the Microsoft console before its landing on the PS4.
You can watch the Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare E3 2014 trailer below
Forza Horizon 2
The open world driving game which first appeared on the Xbox 360 is getting the Xbox One treatment. Set to launch on September 30th on the 360 and the new gen Microsoft console, Forza Horizon 2 will include 200 cars, offer day and night driving, new dynamic weather and will have dedicated servers for online play. Additionally, Microsoft Studios also announced that you’ll be able to join clubs with up to 1,000 members. Driving clubs. Now that sounds familiar…
The multiplayer shooter from developers who worked on Left 4 Dead gives gamers the option to work together as a group of four players to take down human-controlled monsters or opt to take the place of the monster. It’s going to be available on Xbox One, PS4 and PC when it launches on the 21st October 2014.
Assassin’s Creed Unity
Taking its yearly instalment of the open world action game to 18th century Paris, Assassin’s Creed Unity is freshening the series up adding support for four player co-op online play. There’s no firm release date, although we can expect to see the latest chapter in the Assassin’s Creed franchise before the end of the year.
Watch Assassin's Creed Unity E3 2014 gameplay footage below
Family-friendly Kinect games
Although Microsoft made the bold decision to stop selling its motion sensing peripheral alongside the Xbox One, it’s still has more Kinect games on the way and the latest titles set to be added to the roster include Disney Fantasia and Dance Central: Spotlight which will only be available digitally and hopes to add new tracks you can bust a move to every week.
Gamers of a certain age will remember the foul-mouthed squirrel that popped up on the N64 many years ago and it looks like he is coming back. Popping up at the end of a Project Spark video, it looks like the controversial game will be reprised as a charcter in the Xbox One game building title.
Halo the Master Chief Collection
Yes Halo fans, 343 Industries has announced that you will be able to play all four Halo games on the Xbox One from November 11th. The special box set which will cost £49,99, is set to share the same unified interface with all the features unlocked running on the original game engines at 1080p HD at 60 fps.
In other Halo-related news, Halo 2 will also be getting the anniversary edition this year, a new Halo: Nightfall live action film will be included with the Master Chief collection if you pre-order it you'll also get a key to the Halo 5 Guardian Beta with new game modes and features later this year.
Watch Halo the Master Chief Collection gameplay video below
Rise of the Tomb Raider
Arguably one of the biggest games of 2013 and one of the best franchise reboots in recent years, the reinvented Lara is set to make her second appearance after the first Tomb Raider game was given the new-gen treatment earlier this year. There are no details when we can expect to play it, but if it’s as good as the last one, it will be worth the wait.
Watch the Rise of the Tomb Raider E3 2014 announcement trailer
Crackdown (Yes, Crackdown)
Possibly saving the best for last, Microsoft announced that it is making a new Crackdown game. The open world, third person shooter launched back on the Xbox 360 in 2007 and the carnage returned three years later in (the sadly disappointing) Crackdown 2 and now it looks like the third instalment is finally on its way.
You can watch the Crackdown 3 E3 2014 announcement trailer below.
Read more: Best games 2014