STOP USING BUZZWORDS—OLUTION.
EA’s gamescom press conference, once again held on the skirts of Downtown Cologne, really could have done without the usage of the buzzwords used yesterday.
Let me use an example (a bad example, but one nonetheless). There’s a party happening. You have all the right in ingredients to make the party awesome. You have invited the people you want to get pissed with and have fun with, but there’s always that one guy who you somehow invited who just tries too hard to impress the remaining guests and makes it awkward.
The party was EA’s gamescom press conference. The majority of games were the guests. That awkward person was buzzword guy. SmartSim, SpeedList, Levolution were some of the words used yesterday that all formed up part of the lingo of yesterday’s show when nobody, either in attendance or watching online, wanted to learn gimmicky marketing lines — why, EA? Why?
EA’s line-up also didn’t overly impress as much too compared to E3. The Sims 4 was The Sims 4 – if you’re into that, good for you. Command & Conquer, now a free-to-play effort following on from its initial reveal two years ago as Generals 2, won’t be an eSports title within the MLG anytime soon despite the best efforts of the Victory Games’ developers on stage yesterday. And nice try, but I doubt UFC is going to be up my street anytime soon.
In fact, compared to E3, there were no surprises from EA this time, which disappointed me the most yesterday. The line-up was predictable. In fact, not even predictable: it had everything we knew about ahead of time, including The Sims 4, which hadn’t even been shown until yesterday despite it’s May announcement. Back at E3, we had at least four surprises from EA: Plants vs Zombies 2, Peggle 2 (if just an announcement and nothing more), Star Wars Battlefront and Mirror’s Edge (even if that was ruined beforehand).
Though not everything was all bad, buzzwords and a lack of surprises aside. Garden Warfare still looks stupid but the best kind of ‘I want to buy this stupid’ than anything else, while Need for Speed: Rivals is promising to live up to the billing, though you’ll forgive me if I go into it with some skepticism having been burnt by Most Wanted. FIFA 14 is a tantalising prospect for next-gen, while Battlefield 4 looked very amazing, albeit a bit of the wow factor is no longer than it was with Battlefield 3
Though one game that absolutely had a wow factor yesterday was Respawn’s Titanfall. The next big thing from Vince Zampella and co since their Infinity Ward departure was one of E3’s biggest talking points, winning the Best of Show accolade at the E3 Critics Choice Awards. Yesterday’s latest appearance of the mech shooter lived up to its billing and looks set to be something special.
But despite that, this wasn’t the EA that delivered a fantastic conference at E3. In the end, the buzz killed the show. And it wasn’t the best kind of buzz neither. Next time Peter and Frank (by the way, Frank, it’s gamesco*M*, not gamesco*N*), keep the buzzwords at home and have at least one surprise. You’d go a lot further with them, you know.