E3 2012: Shooters

Shooters never get old, if this list of some of the games expected to be shown at E3 is any proof. The return of Halo and Black Ops lead the E3 pack, with a diverse spread of sequels and mysterious newcomers like Dust 514 rounding out the gang. The possibility of a new Star Wars title from Clint Hocking is hanging in the air. Players will get their pick of the total war experience, from fantastical battles between mechs to missions based on true-life experiences of Iraq War veterans. This year at E3, we'll be sorting all of our news and previews from the event into easily consumable genre streams. This round-up of expected games kicks off our shooter stream. Of course, you'll still be able to follow our coverage of the big press conferences, show floor spectacles and everything in between - but if you're only interested in the shooter scene, you'll be able to find news on the games you care about under a single category. For now, check out some of the biggest shooters we're expecting to see at E3 2012 and make sure to mention in comments the shooters we didn't include.

Arma 3 brings the realities of war to the sea with new underwater combat

When creative director Jay Crowe explains the brainstorming process that led to the adding of underwater play to Arma 3 he says it's an extension of the philosophy behind the entire series. Bohemia Interactive, the Czech team that have been working on iterations of their army simulator-cum-tactical shooter series Arma since 2001's Operation Flashpoint: Cold War Crisis are seeking out a new way to make reality digital, and the philosophy that makes this possible is based on player freedom. Earlier installments in the series let its users run across miles of fictional islands or a post-Soviet...

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Bullet Run values style just as much as substance

The thrills in Sony Online Entertainment's new free-to-play shooter Bullet Run are awfully cheap — which, I suppose is appropriate, given that the game is pretty cheap too.

Bullet Run gives its players a suite of ridiculous special powers which complement the genre's standard abilities of "murder without fear of legal consequence" and "continuous life after death." One power straps a pair of deadly claws to the player, and gives them a burst of speed and shielding so they can go full-blown Wolverine for a few seconds. Another equips the player with Akimbo SMGs, and gives them the ability to...

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Crytek's free-to-play Warface

E3 reiterated that 2012 is the year of the free-to-play shooter, and Crytek Kiev's Warface is next on the blocks. After a successful launch in Russia last year and with a Chinese beta underway, Crytek's satellite studio in Kiev has its sights set on western markets next. While no official publishing arrangement has been announced, free-to-play purveyors Trion were taking appointments for Warface at this year's E3, after Crytek announced a publishing arrangement for the game in Taiwan and Korea with Nexon in 2011.

But a publisher isn't enough for a success in an increasingly crowded genre,...

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'Medal of Honor Warfighter' multiplayer is more cooperative, morally confusing

You hear this line repeated at every Medal of Honor demo. "Medal of Honor has always been about authenticity and respect for the soldier." This presentation, in a stuffy booth on the side of EA's E3 compound on the Los Angeles Convention Center show floor, we're hearing it from a pre-recorded video of Greg Goodrich, the broad shouldered Executive Producer at developer Danger Close.

Goodrich is responsible for a lot of the partnership building between the Medal of Honor franchise and its stock of military advisors from across the globe. His relationships with the men who've experienced...

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'TANK! TANK! TANK!' is a solid party game for the Wii U

Namco Bandai's TANK! TANK! TANK! is a great fit for Nintendo's Wii U. Solid, responsive controls and fast gameplay make for a frantic but fun experience, a retooled version of the classic arcade title spun into a living room party game.

Up to five players can play the game at a time, one playing on the Wii U's GamePad while as many as four play on remotes. Players using the GamePad can use the touch screen to select levels and take photos of players' faces for the avatars situated above each tank. Namco Bandai's booth demo featured a level in which the tank commanders must destroy one...

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Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 takes a risky stab at player choice

Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 takes Activision's golden goose further into the future than its ever been — and that's not even the biggest risk the developers at Treyarch are taking with it.

That's not to say the 2025 segments in Black Ops 2 represents a safe bet from the franchise. All of the series' entries, even the Modern Warfares, were guided with differing levels of authenticity by the hand of history. Without actual events to inspire them, Treyarch had to find new inspirations for their battles and weapons from obvious sources like DARPA, and less-than-obvious sources like the TSA.

"...

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'007 Legends' is part of the industry's disappearing middle

One of the big trends in games in the past few years has been the weak middle class — the big budget games are working, the indie games are working, but the games in-between are struggling. It's a bit of a controversial topic, given that there are still plenty of mid-budget games that review well and make money, but as an overall trend, it's easy to point to examples of studios and companies that have struggled with mid-tier games. Cliff Bleszinski even gave a speech about it at 2011's Game Developers Conference.

Based on what I saw at an E3 demo today, Eurocom's 007 Legends fits pretty...

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Dust 514's Vita companion brings you everything but the action, beta dated

When Dust 514 brings the world of EVE Online to PS3 as a free-to-play shooter this year, you'll be able to expand the experience even further if you have a PS Vita. Using the NeoCom app, you'll be able to access your character on the portable device, tweaking their loadout, buying new gear and chatting with friends.

The way executive producer Brandon Laurino put it to us, you'll fundamentally be able to access all of the game's functionality save for the actual FPS battles. However, Laurino said the company is currently experimenting with ways to bring some sort of real-time functionality...

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Gears of War: Judgement developed by both Epic and People Can Fly

When Epic announced the latest Gears of War last week, it was a bit cagey about who was developing the game at first, which led Epic president Mike Capps to take to Twitter and confirm "YES YES YES!" that People Can Fly was involved.

Now at E3, we've gotten more specifics on who's exactly building the game. The word Epic likes to use is "partnership," with Epic overseeing and having staff in-house working on the game, to the point that it's is being developed more in-house than People Can Fly's last game, BulletStorm.

"One of the things is we're letting them drive a lot more on the...

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'Portal 2' gets Move support, level pack later this year

Portal 2 In Motion, a new DLC pack for Portal 2 on PS3, will be available later this year. The content, shown on the E3 show floor, includes the same levels originally available for the Razer Hydra controller, according to a Sony representative. Unlike normal Portal 2 levels, these allow players to manipulate objects, rescaling them to solve new puzzles.

Rumors of Move support were denied earlier this year.

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New 'Halo 4' Spartan Ops trailer tackles co-op, 'Covies,' and Promethean swarms

One of the biggest changes to the Halo series coming with Halo 4 is the introduction of Spartan Ops, which takes the classic Halo co-op gameplay and spins it off into its own adventure. Spartan Ops' episodic additions will tell the story of the UNSC Infinity as it intersects with the events of Halo 4 and beyond.

Check out the new trailer below for a look at one of the Spartan Ops missions in action. It looks an awful lot like Halo co-op, but when that includes all of the new enemies, visual upgrades, and other bonuses that Halo 4 is bringing to the franchise, that's not a bad thing.

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'Hawken' live-action E3 trailer released

Adhesive Games has released a live-action trailer for Hawken. Directed by former Gears of War art director Jerry O'Flaherty, the gritty cinematic trailer introduces a human element into their upcoming free-to-play mech-based first-person shooter.

"Our goal was to integrate into this realized game world and not the other way around," according to Rogues Gallery, the VFX company that produced the trailer. "We wanted our work to seamlessly blend into Jerry’s vision; so we kept our pipeline as simple as possible and hoped that at the end of our 5 week schedule, we could stand by something we...

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Far Cry 3 E3 footage shows tigers, foul language

Kicking off Ubisoft's E3 2012 press briefing today, a new batch of Far Cry 3 footage showed the game playing up its edgier aspects -- beginning with a naked woman, continuing to a scene where the most discernible word was "fuck" repeated a bunch of times, and finishing with tigers that the player could use like explosive barrels: freeing them to attack enemies, lighting everything on fire, and then killing the tigers after.

For an abbreviated version of that footage, check out the game's latest trailer:

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'Far Cry 3' co-op blends teamwork with some friendly competition

You probably already know that Far Cry 3 will have a pretty expansive single-player campaign. You may even know that it will have an adversarial multiplayer component, complete with weapon unlocks, custom classes, the works. What you may not know is that, on top of those pretty meaty modes, there's also going to be co-op. Yep, an entirely separate co-op campaign where you and three buddies will team up to take on the island's various pirates and cult leaders.

The mode follows in the footsteps of Left 4 Dead in that each player takes on a different set character with their own backstory. At...

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Crysis 3 arriving February 2013

Electronic Arts finished off its E3 2012 press conference with a gameplay demo of Crysis 3 and a release date announcement. Crytek's latest gorgeous shooter will launch February next year.

Though it uses the same engine as 2011's Crysis 2, this sequel boasts some impressive new bells and whistles, including improved particle effects. As you might expect from this superpowered franchise, the demo showed off the main character leaping huge bounds, ripping apart structures with his bare hands, and even taking down a helicopter using a bow alone.

The E3 demo of Crysis 3 ended with a dam...

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'Crysis 3' is all about a return to form: Wide open spaces

When people think back to the highlights of the original Far Cry, they think of one thing: Wide open spaces. And maybe mutant apes. But mostly: Wide open spaces. Crysis stuck with this model, giving players giant environments to play around in, letting them approach situations in any way they saw fit. And then came Crysis 2. While not what one would call closed off, Crysis 2 wasn't nearly as wide open as its predecessors, often forcing players into tight alleyways, limiting maneuverability and player choice. When levels did open up, they were invariably far more memorable and fun. Crytrek,...

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Medal of Honor: Warfighter coming October 23rd

At their press conference prior to this year's E3, publisher EA announced that the Danger Close developed sequel to 2010's Medal of Honor will release this October 23rd. Like Battlefield 3 last year, this gives EA a hint of breathing room prior to Activision and Treyarch's Call of Duty release this fall with Black Ops 2. EA also debuted the ability to pilot a military drone during some missions, and also reiterated the Global Warfighters multiplayer mode.

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'Battlefield 3' Premium to cost $50, includes 5 DLC packs

Confirming yesterday's leaked trailer, Electronic Arts will be starting a new initiative called Battlefield 3 Premium. Similar to DLC Season Passes in other games, Battlefield 3 Premium will grant access to five Battlefield 3 DLC packs: the already-released Back to Karkand and the upcoming Close Quarters, Armored Kill, Aftermath and End Game. The pack will cost $50 and grant participants two weeks of early access to the DLC packs. In addition, unique camos, weapons and dog tags will be accessible to Battlefield 3 Premium users.

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Explosive 'Gears of War: Judgement' trailer throws back to the Locust War

Today Microsoft unveiled the new trailer for Gears of War: Judgement at its E3 press conference,

The trailer once again shows the city of Sera on fire, under siege by enormous spidery Corpsers. Franchise stars Augustus Cole and Damon Baird are dragged before the tribunal for the Coalition of Ordered Governments and charged with leading the city to its destruction.

Gears of War: Judgement is a prequel to the Gears of War series, and will release exclusively for Xbox 360 in 2013.

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Halo 4's first gorgeous gameplay, live action trailer from E3 2012

Microsoft unveiled the first gameplay from Halo 4's campaign at its Xbox E3 briefing today, showing how developer 343 Industries will start its new Halo trilogy.

Featuring more than five minutes of Halo 4's first-person action and story-driven campaign, the debut gameplay video shows Master Chief facing new enemies and deadly technology as he races to save the shipwrecked UNSC Infinity.

See old Covenant foes and a brand-new threat, plus a montage of the spectacle to come later this year, in Halo 4's E3 2012 gameplay trailer.


Microsoft also showed off a live action mood-setting trailer for...

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Splinter Cell: Blacklist revealed at Xbox media briefing

First details of the next Splinter Cell game have been released just prior to Ubisoft's E3 2012 press conference.

Media for Ubisoft's Splinter Cell: Blacklist, posted earlier today by Gamekyo, show Sam Fisher fighting in a Middle Eastern setting with handguns, rifles and hand-to-hand with knives. Fisher fights in broad daylight, but still bears his trademark night vision goggles.

A gameplay demo for the game was shown at Microsoft's E3 briefing, showing quick, violent third-person action segments of Fisher infiltrating a militant camp and killing a team of heavily armed soldiers. B...

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Battlefield 3 Premium trailer leaks

What appears to be an official trailer for the rumored Battlefield 3 Premium service hit Youtube today apparently confirming most of the details previously leaked.

According to the a leaked fact sheet, the Premium package gives access to five - the four listed above, and "Aftermath" - DLC packs two weeks before their release, starting with Close Quarters (as Back to Karkand is already available). It includes other bonuses, too, like a "unique in-game knife," new dog tags, camos, assignments and other multiplayer functionality, all for $49.99.

We're sure to hear if this is real in the next...

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E3 2012: The Shooters

Shooters never get old, if this list of some of the games expected to be shown at E3 is any proof.

The return of Halo and Black Ops lead the E3 pack, with a diverse spread of sequels and mysterious newcomers like Dust 514 rounding out the gang. The possibility of a new Star Wars title from Clint Hocking is hanging in the air. Players will get their pick of the total war experience, from fantastical battles between mechs to missions based on true-life experiences of Iraq War veterans.

This year at E3, we'll be sorting all of our news and previews from the event into easily consumable genre...

Continue reading…

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