All the weird things you missed at E3

about X hours ago from
All the weird things you missed at E3

E3 2017 will go down in history as the first year the show was open to the public, which means the crushing crowds filling the Los Angeles Convention Center were even more extreme. The rest of the show, however, was just as amped up -- eSports tournaments took over downtown, Mario and the Rabbids formed a strange yet intriguing relationship, Bethesda held a carnival and band geeks commiserated with sports bros. Get a first-hand look at all of the madness in the carefully curated, painstakingly compiled "Weirdness of E3 2017" gallery below.

Microsoft expects consumers to 'figure out' which Xbox is which

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Microsoft expects consumers to 'figure out' which Xbox is which

The best way to keep a job as a marketer is to never go off message. That's precisely what happened when I interviewed Xbox's head of console marketing Albert Penello on our E3 stage this week. While he was more than happy to talk about the Xbox One X's tech specs and the impact 4K gaming will have on everyone, asking harder questions about Xbox as an organization resulted in a lot of non-answers. But there were a few tells.

Discover your rockstar stage persona in ‘The Artful Escape’

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Discover your rockstar stage persona in ‘The Artful Escape’

"It's not an artist's job to give people something they want, but to give them something they never could have imagined." These words are spoken to Francis Vendetti in The Artful Escape, an upcoming game that follows a young guitar prodigy on a psychedelic journey to discover who he really is. In the moment, the words are meant to help Vendetti find his own path as a musician, but it feels like they apply to the game itself -- a gorgeous, musical storytelling experienced disguised as a platformer.

The Indie Megabooth is a calm bubble floating above E3 chaos

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The Indie Megabooth is a calm bubble floating above E3 chaos

One of the best experiences at E3 wasn't actually at E3. The Devolver parking lot was positioned directly across the street from the flashing lights, gigantic banners and thumping booths packed inside of the Los Angeles Convention Center, and it offered a calm yet energetic alternative to the mainstream madness. This year, the Indie Megabooth shared Devolver's lot, exposing a rotating selection of independent games each day to the periphery of E3 -- which was plenty. Trust.

A chat with the 76ers' first all-female eSports team, Dignitas

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A chat with the 76ers' first all-female eSports team, Dignitas

The Philadelphia 76ers bought Team Dignitas -- an established esports organization with teams across League of Legends, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Heroes of the Storm -- in September, making it the first North American sports franchise to plant a flag in the world of professional gaming. In February, Dignitas picked up its first all-female professional team with players from Selfless Gaming, which had just placed second at the Electronic Sports World Cup in Bordeaux, France.

Playing witness to an android riot in 'Detroit: Become Human'

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Playing witness to an android riot in 'Detroit: Become Human'

I don't know when I'll get to play Detroit: Become Human again. The latest game from David Cage's Quantic Dream studio (Heavy Rain, Beyond: Two Souls) conspicuously didn't have a release date, or, hell, even a release year when Sony showed off a brand new demo at its media briefing earlier this week. Behind closed doors I was shown an extended version of the stage demo and saw just how an android riot starts.

In 'Fortnite,' building is just as important as fighting monsters

about X hours ago from
In 'Fortnite,' building is just as important as fighting monsters

Epic Games' Fortnite, once described by company founder Tim Sweeney as Minecraft meets Left 4 Dead, has been six years in the making. That's a long time to keep someone excited about a game, but you can't fault Epic for not wanting to rush its latest Unreal Engine 4 project. And based on my first experience with Fortnite, it has the potential to be a solid survival game. Not everything here is about fighting or killing monsters, though, as your success in the Fortnite world will also largely depend on your building and exploring skills.

Insomniac's 'Spider-Man' gets what it means to be Peter Parker

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Insomniac's 'Spider-Man' gets what it means to be Peter Parker

When Sony revealed that Insomniac games was working on a PlayStation 4 exclusive Spider-Man game set in an original universe, the specter of another game hung over the announcement -- 2004's Spider-Man 2. This movie tie in is widely regarded as the game that perfected web-swinging, as well as the title that no subsequent Spider-Man game ever lived up to. Creative director Bryan Intihar is aware of the stigma, but he doesn't seem worried.He's confident his game will make players feel like Spider-Man. His goal is more complicated. He wants players to feel like Peter Parker.

The evolution of women in video games continues at E3 2017

about X hours ago from
The evolution of women in video games continues at E3 2017

Feminist Frequency founder Anita Sarkeesian tries to make it clear her yearly, gender-focused analysis of the video games announced at E3 isn't founded in malice -- it's simply reality. Even in 2017, video games overwhelmingly feature male protagonists, rather than female leads. According to Feminist Frequency, 109 games debuted at E3 this year, and just eight of them (or 7 percent) star female characters, compared with 29 titles (26 percent) featuring male protagonists. Fifty-two percent of newly announced games utilize a system that lets players select specific characters or genders. On their own, these statistics aren't bad or good; they're simply facts.