The Eurogamer Expo 2011 was my first experience at a gaming exhibition, and I must admit that before I even attended, I had already created my own narrow-minded preconceptions. You wade through a wide girth of various differing games, wait patiently in line to play them and scurry off to the next booth of interest, and ok, that’s pretty much the jist of the day, but its a little more satisfying than it sounds. Being in an environment full of like-minded individuals is a strangely gratifying encounter, everyone is their to enjoy, play and in some cases, relax. No console discrimination, just gamers ready to engage and indulge their gaming addictions (and I mean that in a positive way). Ok, so lets move on to the games, of which there were many.
I’m just one man, so even with my over whelming enthusiasm and my aching stomach being successfully quelled by a satisfying full english breakfast, playing every game that I wanted too just wasnt a viable option, but I persevered and I feel despite missing many extraordinary titles, my day was a triumph. There was also an element of self discovery too as I determined that I’m not as talented a gamer as I originally perceived.
Ok, first up, the games I failed to play. Due to time constraints and my extreme lack of patience, I did admittedly miss arguably 2 of this years biggest games, Batman: Arkham City and Skyrim. I know, I know, “how could you miss these 2 sensational games” I hear you cry, trust me, it wasnt a decision I took lightly. As I have previously stated, this is my first gaming exhibition and its that very reason that I wasnt prepared to spend the entirety of my day queuing for the privilege of 20 mins gameplay, when I could be playing other less attractive but accessible titles. The que for both of these popular games was over an hour-long, but despite not actually participating, and just by observing other gamers I can, with almost absolute certainty conclude that both of these games are GOTY contenders (what a shock). Both are graphically impressive, from the gothic and dark feel that exudes throughout Arkham City, to the incredible changing weather conditions that not even the most astute meteorologist could predict in Skyrim, these are both truly immersive games.
Sonic Generations is a game that before the expo wasnt exactly high on my priorities, but after reminiscing in the retro zone, I couldn’t help but give in to my nostalgic state and play a series that had been waning for far too long. Thankfully Generations is easily the best sonic game for well over a decade, merging the old with the new seamlessly in a ridiculously fast and equally frantic flowing world, nostalgia well and truly satisfied. But the game that every Playstation devotee wants to play is Uncharted, and holy Victor Sullivan, I can see why! The multiplayer is highly absorbing despite my obvious lack of skill, (my team and myself were literally destroyed by one talented 10-year-old), and by crafting a multiplayer this immersive it could very well challenge both Battlefield and Call Of Duty, which is impressive considering that Uncharted is a largely story driven single player experience. There are various areas to explore including desert ruins and towering buildings, with many places to run and very few to hide, and exhales this as possibly the most addictive Uncharted game in the series.
Playing Uncharted in 3D however, leaves much to be desired. Visually Uncharted could easily challenge Skyrim in terms of pure scope and beauty, but in 3D, things become somewhat distorted and dispel much of Uncharted’s beautiful vibrance, I guess I’ve never really been sold on the idea of 3D. But despite my minor grumblings, Uncharted really shined through, as did the entire convention. If you have never been to an exhibition before, then I would strongly advice doing so for next year, you never know what you might discover.
Did you go to the Eurogamer Expo? And if so, what was your experience? Let me know what you thought, cheers.