CALL OF DUTY – WWII / DESTINY 2 / EXTINCTION [E3 2017]: Maximum Activision!
Remember that Call of Duty from way back when? Well, guess what: it’s back. Almost exactly as you remember it.. if you’re old enough to remember it. Call of Duty: WWII‘s weapons are heavy, the world is gritty, and you’re covered in blood, but it’s not your own. Private Ryan just got his head blown off, and you were whispering sweet nothings of German destruction in his ear. If you don’t move fast you’re gonna take a bullet too.
And this time around, you’ll hold onto every bullet.
In Call of Duty: WWII, there is no more health regeneration. You’ve gotta trust your team and your keen sense of sight to find health packs if you want to live through this war. Sledgehammer’s graphics have been upgraded to amazing levels, and their audio will immerse you in every battle. The best part is, beyond the gun fire, you’re now part of the ground-shaking action instead of being embedded in cutscenes and cinematics. Looks great, feels great, sounds great (i.e. some of the haunting score and chain-clanging FX might remind you of Dishonored). Upgraded, updated, and blown the fuck up on all fronts. But at its core, it’s the same Call of Duty we started with. The war has come full circle and we’re right back in the fight of our lives. 4/5 Bibles. – Esko Robinson
Upon arriving to the Deacon E and yours truly’s BCD hands-on demo of Destiny 2, we were greeted by a developer with the good ol’ “you’ll be playing today on PC today.” Yikes. Scorching through a deadly sci-fi shooter via keyboard and mouse is so not my jam. But we did our best, barely dying through out 20+ minute demo without much of a hiccup. With Xbox One X not ready for demo yet, it was obvious that Activision wanted us to see D2 in all its 4K (and 60fps) glory. Destiny 2 sure is pretty–and was indeed one of the best demos I played at the conference thus far–despite not being a whole lot different than the original. With this many nerds still playing vanilla Destiny these days, it’s hard to fault Bungie for the “if it ain’t broke…” approach.
One thing Destiny players should notice right away is the speed. At 60 frames, you should witness your Warlock (my personal favorite class from the O.G.) bursting through the new Cabal and torrential environs with some Igniting Touch, the usual feel-great rifle mechanics, and the new Dawnblade flame-scorching sword thing.. that is just too awesome for words. Really, I barely had no idea how to move/sprint using the damn WASD keys and I still, effortlessly, triggered my temporary super weapon and used it at will. I can’t imagine how great this arsenal will feel all over again with an Xbox controller firm in hand. The demo only got better, too, as the sporadic cannon fire (especially with the scoped rifle) only felt nastier and enemies (including the new Gladiators) only got tougher. Shoot, evade, slice. The story actually feels like something is strongly at stake for a change, too. – 4.25/5 Bibles. – Travis Moody
***BONUS E3 DEMO REVIEW***
I’m kinda sad about Extinction. After its reveal just less than 2-weeks ago, I really thought this Iron Galaxy actioneer had a shot to match what Agents of Mayhem did at E3 last year: win “Dark Horse of E3”. Nope. Not only was the game embarassingly albeit understandably buggy (i.e. walls and characters blindly disappeared into buildings) and not all that impressive (I mean.. it only takes cutting off the 150-foot Ogre’s kneebrace on the way to killing it?), the emcee for the afternoon BCD demo had a bit too much nervous laughter that put me off. I feel for the young man. He was terribly unsure of himself at times, and had a tough time following the action on-screen.
Perhaps worse, the host ducked a simple question about Extinction‘s obvious comparison to Attack on Titan with the whole cute “David v. Goliath” trope and usual “we’ll have more info coming along” response. Double meh. Some other info: if you don’t kill the Ogres in time, they regenerate limbs. The full rune attack was pretty impressive in a Shadow of Mordoresque manner, although putting these massive enemies down seemed way too simple. Whipping around towns also seemed pretty cool, with the abilities to use window awnings as bounce-pads, whips as careening devices, and slowing time for extra movements. During a brief Q&A, we learned that there will be different ways to upgrade weaponry (via currency), and that there will be story beats inside and outside of dialogue scenes with multiple exteriors and environments. 2/5 Bibles. – Travis Moody