Far Cry 4 is definitely Ubisoft's most-hyped game of the year, and they started off their press conference with the opening cinematic, detailing your character's awkward bus stop and meeting of a mysterious man who seems to take no particular hesitation is killing people. Good start to the conference, leading into:
- Just Dance 2015. The 2,015th entry into the Dance Central megafranchise features gets a trailer with a song that I'm absolutely not sick of. Looks like it'll incorporate community uploads of video, which should lead to some interesting new ways for people on the internet to mock you. Mildly interesting app that lets smartphones act as a controller when watching a displayed video on a screen somewhere. Looks either totally stupid or fun, depending on your level of cynicism.
- Lengthy CGI trailer for Tom Clancy's The Division, which honestly by now is probably preferable to canned chatter from "real" "gamers" "playing" "co-op." Looks like an attempt to flesh out the world a bit. We'll try to get it up on the site as soon as we can.
- Having decided that we already know what racing games look like, Ubi takes a different tack by speeding up the footage of The Crew by 500% or so. Game looks pretty slick. New York, The Rockies, Las Vegas, and San Francisco make appearances. Four different demos on the show floor depending on which booth you get to.
- Assassin's Creed Unity up next. Weird that they had such long videos for these games at Microsoft's conference; seems like it's making this footage less of an event. Well, "footage." Another CGI trailer, but it is at least one of the best ones of the day. Cut to some gameplay. Climbing seems quicker this time around, and it looks like there are some missions that can be picked up spontaneously, without having to go through a dialogue or cutscene to get them. Unclear if these are big deals or just side missions, but I suspect the latter. Eagle vision can now see through walls even before you have a visual on your enemies. Co-op missions will pop up a UI element as you pass by them, indicating which of your online friends are already doing the mission. Some of the crowds here are really immense. This game looks really nice and also looks like it is more Assassin's Creed; your reaction to that news may vary.
- Shape Up is an Xbox One exclusive fitness game for Kinect. Takes the approach of making exercise less of a rote task and instead putting the player into gamified exercise scenarios: shadowboxing terrorists, dancing on a huge piano, endless pushups with "weights" on your back.
- Valiant Hearts: The Great War is what looks to be an interesting-looking 2D game set during World War I featuring the world's saddest dog. Looks like they're pushing the melancholy pretty hard with this one; there's a grave marker right in the game's name, for god's sake. No real sense of any gameplay, though, as this appears to be purely a cinematic.
- Last game up is...a new Rainbow Six? SWAT versus a gang of home invaders, two teams of five. SWAT plans the breach point, decides to head in through a window, successfully takes down a kidnapper. No walls are safe from the wrath of a militarized police force; this house is totally getting trashed. Some interesting mechanics of breaching walls and floors to move around the house, but this might be the best/worst fake scripted co-op banter that we've seen yet. Rainbow Six: Siege. Looks pretty neat, but, as with any of these games on the distant horizon, it'll be interesting to compare how the game actually plays when it comes out to this first trailer.
No new Prince of Persia, no Beyond Good and Evil. Not much in the way of Far Cry 4, either, but apparently that will be showing up at Sony in a bit. A fun show with some fun-looking games, and damn are some of them real, real pretty.