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EA Press Conference Round-Up

EA’s E3 press event was low on surprises, but packed in details and footage from a lot of titles.

The speeches opened with Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit, the new game from Criterion games. It’s due 16 November and looks to involve all the high-octane chases and car ramming you’d expect – as well as a new “autolog” feature letting you keep track of friends. Criterion has just confirmed it will also be coming to the PC.

What followed was dark, menacing and a little bit freaky. No, it wasn’t more Kinectimals, it was Dead Space 2. The footage shown ended on a cliffhanger, with the promise of more to be shown at tomorrow’s Sony event. EA also revealed that the release date for this is 25 January 2011.No less gritty and horrible (maybe moreso, given its contemporary setting) was Medal of Honor, which was briefly demonstrated with a twenty four player fragfest, followed by a multiplayer trailer. The opportunity was also taken to try to sell us on EA’s crassly-named Gun Club, which will (amongst other things) provide early (17 June) Medal of Honor multiplayer beta access to anybody signing up. For everybody else, the multiplayer beta begins on 21 June.

Vietnam then popped up for the second time today (the first being Call of Duty: Black Ops), as a short trailer informed us that a Battlefield Bad Company 2: Vietnam map pack is on the way in Winter 2010.


At this point the blatant violence stepped aside and allowed the more subtle violence of sport to have its moment in the sun.

MMA was given a strong push, along with news of EA’s “live broadcast” system. It’s no secret that Starcraft 2 matches can draw large audiences, but will games players both to tune in for two virtual fighters duking it out? That remains to be seen. No doubt people will have fun attempting to abuse the ability to upload lengthy taunts and catcalls though.

EA Sports Active 2 and Madden 11 were shown at this point, with former American football star Joe Montana being wheeled out to discuss tactics and accessibility.

Then something very strange occurred. I think I had some sort of fever dream where a simple announcement about The Sims 3 coming to consoles took the form of a lengthy and involved philosophical statement about life and free will. But that can’t have really happened, can it?

Anybody who was able to rouse themselves after that deeply strange incident were able to catch some new footage from Crytek’s Crysis 2. This time it’s even Crysisiseyer … or something. It looked from the video as if New York’s central station was coming in for a hell of a battering.

But not as much of a battering as the poor, hapless fellows in the Bulletstorm in-game demonstration. Those unfortunate guys were being kicked into generators and all sorts. The game looks ludicrous and dumb as a chocolate teapot – but knowingly so. Oh so knowingly so. If its kick mechanic comes anywhere close to being as terrific as Dark Messiah’s, though, then all will be well. CliffyB was on good form, telling us that the game will encourage players to play around with fancy kills “like a fat kid plays with cake.” It’s due on 22 February 2011.

For the grand finale, Bioware showed us its new “Hope” trailer for Star Wars: The Old Republic and let everybody know that they’d be getting their own starship. Presumably they meant in the game, but after Microsoft gave everyone a new Xbox 360 earlier, it’s difficult to be absolutely sure.


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