We’re at a point with E3 where “E3” itself is more like just a period of time rather than its own press event. Major publishers – like EA and Bethesda – have started hosting their own press conference before E3 showings. To be honest, it’s a little strange, but I guess it’s just something to get used to.
Today we had EA Play 2016 – the first of EA’s own E3-like press conference. This will be my review of the event.
A Slow Start
In my honest opinion, if you’re going to make a big enough deal out of branching out and doing your own, dedicated press event – and have it take place the day before regular E3 events – then you better start the week off with a bang.
EA failed to do that today.
At EA’s event, we got brief looks at their upcoming titles like Battlefield 1, Mass Effect Andromeda, Fe, Fifa 2017, Madden 2017, Titanfall 2, and then some vague info about a plethora of potential upcoming Star Wars franchise titles.
But it didn’t feel like we really got any new information – especially given that the Titanfall 2 singleplayer announcement and trailer was leaked before the event – but rather just a bunch of rehashes of stuff we already expected.
The lack of any real “wow factor,” combined with the event starting a bit late and on-floor rumours of the press not being able to get in and so on, EA Play was a slow and unimpressive start to the E3 week.
Teasers & Trailers
Trailers for a few games came along with the hosts talking about EA’s plans for the future.
Battlefield 1’s trailer honestly felt no different than the first one. I don’t feel like we learned anything new with this. I was quite disappointed. They did have a 64-player live stream of the game after the event, though, providing our first real look at gameplay.
Titanfall 2’s trailers (yes, plural – they gave us separate multiplayer and singleplayer trailers) were pretty neat. The announcement that the sequel would have singleplayer along with the trailer was leaked prior to the event, but the info was still exciting, regardless. Plus, a mech with an AI voice similar to Optimus Prime’s? YES PLEASE!
We also got our first real look at Mass Effect Andromeda, with BioWare representative Aaryn Flynn promising “more player freedom than any other BioWare game before.” This was an exciting reveal, though we still don’t have any info about the gameplay itself just yet.
EA’s Future Plans
EA seemed to spend most of their time talking about their plans for their sports franchises – competition programs for Madden and Fifa. While some audiences may be excited for this, it could even be felt by the public that the announcements were fairly underwhelming.
They also announced their EA Originals program – a new program to publish original indie games like Unravel and newly-announced Fe, while giving the revenue from the games entirely to the developers.
Overall, EA’s conference left me bored. Nothing new was announced, and nothing exciting was revealed. This was NOT the way to kick off E3.
Because of this, I’m giving EA Play 2016 a 4/10.
EA Play 2016: 4/10 – Not the way to start E3
(This is mainly concreted as I’m watching Bethesda’s show while writing this. NEW QUAKE, BABY!)