Anyone can give out awards for “best of show” or “greatest shooter” at E3. However, I think that those awards aren’t really all that useful. In truth, most of the games at the show were just, different. It’s hard to say whether Battlefield Hardline or Destiny is the better shooter, because they appeal to two different types of gamers. As such, these “not your normal E3 awards” come at the convention from a different perspective. They talk about our expectations and whether or not companies met them. These awards are written from the perspective of “what was the most/least fun” at the convention, and after all, video games are all about having fun.
- Most Awesome Game That Confirmed Its Awesomeness – The Evil Within
There weren’t a lot of games that I was actually looking forward to at this year’s E3, but The Evil Within was one of the few. Bethesda teamed up with Shinji Mikami, the creator of Resident Evil ? Sign me up! The Evil Within was truly and utterly terrifying, and brought horror back to a time before the genre was eaten up by action games. Fans of The Last of Us, Silent Hill, Resident Evil, and more should check this out.
- Crap Game That Confirmed Its Crappiness – Sonic Boom
We all know that Sonic games just aren’t good anymore. However, I had no idea that SEGA was just going to paint over Jak and Daxter with a blue coat of paint and call it a Sonic game. Sonic doesn’t punch and kick things, he runs, and there wasn’t a whole lot of running in this horrible pile of bad ideas.
- Best Booth – 2K Games
2K games had an incredible showing this year at E3. Every single game at their booth was fantastic, from Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel , to the fantastic new multiplayer 4 on 1 shooter Evolve , to Civilization: Beyond Earth , to even the new WWE game. I spent over 3 hours at the booth just trying to see everything, and they easily have one of the strongest lineups going into this next year.
- Worst Booth – Capcom
By far the most disappointing booth at the show was Capcom, which just barely beat out Square-Enix for the “OK but show us something new” award. Capcom only had the new Monster Hunter on the 3DS to show, and that’s it. Everything else was either DLC, a remake or re-release, or had already come out.
- Most Unexpectedly Enjoyed – Fable Legends
To be honest, I’m not a big Fable fan. They always felt like RPGs that pale in comparison to the great ARPG and JRPGs of the time, like Elder Scrolls and Final Fantasy . But, Fable Legends was incredibly fun, if only because you could play the villain. The RTS style controls were lots of fun and the ability to set up evil traps, like walling in the heroes and raining down AOE attacks on them, was so much fun. I guess the game wasn’t a very fun RPG but it’s an awesome RTS.
- Biggest Disappointment – Super Smash Bros.
This is not going to be a popular opinion, but I was not a big fan of the new Smash Bros . It felt hard to control, unbalanced, and not fulfilling to either the pro or the casual communities. The new characters were interesting and the new stages were beautiful, but the inner mechanics of the game are going to make for slow and non-interactive battles. Perhaps in 1v1 with reasonable stock rules this game would be cool, but in 2 minute time match free for alls it wasn’t fun at all.
- Best Press Conference – Sony
Sony was the only press conference that made me excited to own a PS4. Microsoft had perhaps the coolest lineup of games but they were all multiplatform. EA gave us donuts, but mostly had sports games to show, though they did give us an awesome demo for Battlefield Hardline . Nintendo’s was digital only and really just pimped out Smash , and Ubisoft’s lineup was sadly quite sparse. Sony was the only press conference that made me go “that’s coming to PS4? Awesome!”
- Most Innovative – Project Morpheus
The Oculus Rift was cool, but Project Morpheus proved that VR isn’t just a gimmick. These headsets are going to be priced around the cost of a handheld, which is well within the budget of most gamers. The head tracking is awesome, the display is great, and it really does increase the immersion of whatever game you play. It’s good to see that Sony is trying to bring reliable VR to the masses.
- Most Played – Destiny
There were only three games that I returned to multiple times over the course of E3. One was Smash Bros. as I simply needed to figure out the mechanics. Another was Persona 4 Arena , as the pro fighting game community tended to hover around that station. But Destiny was the one game I personally had the most fun with. It felt like a combination of Halo, Borderlands, and Call of Duty , and it was very forgiving for shooter newbies like me. Also, one of the characters had a punch that blew up tanks. How could that be bad?
- Most Fun – Tales from the Borderlands
Though Tales from the Borderlands wasn’t a hands on demo, it was the only game that made me laugh. I had this huge grin on my face as I saw Borderlands 2 characters return to the story, popular voice actors giving incredible performances, jabs at other video games like Mortal Kombat integrated into the story, and more. If there was any game that I had to say was a must buy, it’s this one.