As we started planning for E3, the busiest week of the year, we decided that simply covering every PC game we could get our hands on at the convention wasn't enough. We wanted to do something ambitious. Something that would make our lives harder. Something like shooting the first episode of a new bi-weekly series about PC games. We're calling it The PC Gamer Show.
Rainbow Six Siege was our favorite game at E3. The promise of a Rainbow reboot centered around competitive multiplayer and high-fidelity destruction captured our tactical imaginations, but Ubisoft’s narrow, one-level demo left us with a ton of unanswered questions. How does destruction work? Would it be moddable? Can hostages move on their own? What form will co-op take?
We've played Star Citizen's Arena Commander module and gotten our first taste of dogfighting in Chris Roberts' new universe. At E3 2014, we had time to talk to the man himself. Roberts gave us all kinds of information about the current state of Star Citizen and what's coming in the next two years. He talks about the Oculus Rift, planetside gameplay, server architecture, and much more.
On the last day of E3, our boots on the ground lined up to talk about the best games they played and saw at the biggest games convention of them all. From left to right, UK Editor Samuel Roberts, US Features Editor Wesley Fenlon, and US Editor-in-Chief Evan Lahti talk Rainbow Six Siege, Dragon Age Inquisition, Batman: Arkham Knight, No Man's Sky, and stay standing despite three days of tireless reporting.
The most surprising, charming game I played at E3 was on the Oculus Rift, but it wasn't bullet-dodger Superhot or fright factory Alien Isolation. It was platformer Lucky's Tale, which looks and plays a whole lot like 3D Mario. But man oh man, does VR make a difference. The sense of depth it adds is immediately helpful and immersive, and I knew immediately VR would have been a killer feature in a game like Super Mario 3D World on the Wii U. But Lucky's Tale will be a PC, Oculus Rift exclusive, launching alongside the consumer version of the Rift at an unannounced future date. The demo was so exciting, I had to find out more.
In my last E3 appointment, I spent 30 minutes talking with creator Paul Bettner about how his studio stumbled onto the idea of doing a traditional platformer in VR, the technical challenges of nailing the VR camera, and the future of Oculus hardware.
Dragon Age: Inquisition interview: the world, party, and how BioWare's biggest Dragon Age plays on PC
Dragon Age: Inquisition was one of our favorite things at E3. After checking out EA's generous gameplay demo on the floor, I inquired with Dragon Age's Creative Director, Mike Laidlaw, about how party members will influence story decisions, how Inquisition plays on PC, and a few other things I was curious about.
Evan and Wes are back from E3, joining Tyler and Cory to discuss the best games they saw. The list goes Far Cry 4, No Man's Sky, Hunt: Horrors of the Gilded Age, Dragon Age Inquisition, Assassin's Creed Unity, Evolve, Batman: Arkham Knight, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Oculus Rift DK2, and a game designed just for Evan, Rainbow Six Siege. Read up on all of them in our Best of E3 Awards.
I met with Alienware at E3 2014 to look at the only prominent PC at the show: the Alienware Alpha, a miniature Steam Machine going on sale around the end of the year. This Steam Machine won't be running Valve's Linux-based SteamOS, or ship with a Steam Controller, though—when Valve delayed final releases of both to next year, Alienware decided to switch to Windows 8.1 with a custom UI and boot sequence that launches straight into Steam Big Picture. What I saw was an early, rough version of that UI, but Alienware made it clear that you shouldn't ever have to see Windows when you boot up the box. Unless, of course, you want to.
You may have noticed that Microsoft's E3 press event was heavy on the Xbox and rather light on Windows—which is to say, it didn't come up at all. According to Phil Spencer, the head of Microsoft's Xbox division and Microsoft Game Studios, there's a good reason for that: E3 is a "console show," and Microsoft didn't want to bring a gun to a knife fight.
We made it. E3 2014 is over, and we survived the onslaught of Mario and Nathan Drake and Master Chief, pushing our way past the console exclusives to find the best PC games hidden within the massive LA convention center. Surprisingly, the search wasn't too hard. We saw and played more amazing PC games than we expected, from promising indies to big-budget stunners. It wasn't easy to narrow down our best-in-show, but here it is: our list of the 10 best PC games of E3 2014.
So. Many. Games. The release lineup from now until the end of 2015 is packed with promising titles, from The Witcher 3 and Dragon Age: Inqquisition to newly revealed games like Rainbow Six: Siege. Imagine if there was a place where you could browse through all of the games shown this year, and learn about their prospects for a PC release. Well, imagine no more, for we have done exactly that. Read on for your comprehensive guide to the games of E3 2014.
E3 is over. For those that survived, it's a chance to stop, catch a breath, and let out a long, guttural scream at the visions that just won't stop. But while the conference centre itself is now barricaded for decontamination, the echoes of the show can still be felt. In fact, here's an E3 trailer, snuggled away in some dark corner of YouTube. It's for EVE: Valkyrie, CCP's Oculus powered space dogfighting game.
That's the last day of E3 2014 done and dusted. We'll miss the excruciatingly loud music, questionable LA Convention Centre kiosk food and exciting new video games, but be sure to check-in for our post-show impressions later in the week. In the meantime, behold PC Gamer's coverage from the fourth day on the E3 2014 showroom floor, just in case you missed anything.
Time-shifting indie shooter Superhot is one of the most interesting games to emerge from a game jam. The pitch is simple: when you’re moving, so is time. Bullets hang in the air when you aren’t walking, and moving more slowly gives you time to dodge, aim, and evaluate. It’s a fascinating twist on time and space in an FPS.
E3 2014 is now over. We laughed, we cried, we ran from appointment to appointment, we lost our hotel keys. Most importantly, we played the biggest and best games coming our way in the next year. Now that the show is done, relive the glory of the E3 expo floor in the following photos, taken by FutureUS's Mark Madeo.
We've known about the existence of The Sims 4 since last summer and we have some idea of what to expect from the game too, thanks to a nice October preview that promised to imbue your tiny little digital people with "the full weight of emotion." And now, thanks to the wonders of E3, we finally know when it's coming.
2015 is collecting some great-looking games, but a lot of the big stuff shown at E3 will be on our Steams and Origins and uPlays before the year ends. Catch up on what's ahead with PC Gamer US Editor-in-chief Evan Lahti, who joined Hollander Cooper and Ryan Taljonick from GamesRadar to discuss what we'll be playing this holiday. Highlights include Hollander's fear of PC Gamer judgment and Evan patiently nodding at Smash Bros. before enthusing about Civilization: Beyond Earth.
Battlefield Hardline is an odd patchwork of action crime flicks and large-scale Battlefield 4 warfare. I've been playing the closed beta, and though speeding down a freeway in a cop car is a new experience, it feels a lot like BF4—except that seeing a uniformed police officer wielding an RPG is uncanny. A few days before the E3 reveal, I asked Visceral Games VP and GM Steve Papoutsis to explain why, for instance, the cops and criminals have military-grade weapons.
I have good news for those of you who can't wait to get your hands on Super Lemonade Factory, I am weapon or Car Disassembly 3D: Steam has given the Greenlight to 75 more titles, including those three and one that's actually been banned.