Shack Staff's E3 2012 disappointments

By Shack Staff, Jun 22, 2012 11:45am PDT

Earlier this week, we took a look at our favorite moments of E3. Now, we reminisce about what disappointed us at this year's show.

While this year's E3 was home to a number of great games, many felt disappointed by the lack of truly big announcements by the big three. "As much as I enjoyed the shows for Halo 4, Pikmin 3, and God of War: Ascension, I'd rather have revelations that are truly shocking, even if they're for B-tier franchises," Steve lamented. "We want to see something fresh and surprising."

Every press conference was guilty of focusing on sequels and known IPs. However, perhaps no company struggled to impress as much as Microsoft. "In terms of games, what does Microsoft have on its way beyond Halo and Gears of War? Halo and Gears of War looked great, but these are aging franchises," Ozzie pointed out. "What's coming in the future?"

Nintendo had a number of conferences throughout E3 week, with the first dedicated to unveiling the updated Wii U GamePad and Miiverse social network. It set expectations quite high for the rest of the week's festivities--and very little substantive followed. Perhaps most disconcerting is the total lack of launch info for their next console. "I'm very concerned that there was never a price announced. Nintendo learned from Sony not to let the air out of the room by announcing an astronomical launch price. Their silence tells me we're looking at a $300 price tag at the least."

The Shacknews team felt pretty good about the Sony press conference, even though WonderBooks might have taken a bit too much stage time. However, where was the Vita? "We all thought that this would be the year that Sony blew the doors off the Vita," Steve said. "I want to believe in my Vita, but this year it seemed a lot like Sony doesn't." Ozzie agreed. "The Vita showed off a gorgeous-looking Assassin's Creed game and announced a Call of Duty game, but had almost no presence beyond that. Where were the games?"

Finally, here are five games that failed to live up to our expectations. Will they turnaround before they release?

The Elder Scrolls Online - "How can a game be in development for five years and have such a flat and uninspired showing at its coming out party? I love MMOs and I have always liked the Elder Scrolls games, but the melding of the two looks like a disaster waiting to happen. Even the 100 v 100 PvP, which had caught my attention when the game was announced, was only glossed over and felt like it was tacked on to the demo at the end." - John Keefer

New Super Mario Bros. U - "A new 2D Mario title is all well and good, but I would have thought that Nintendo would have spent a bit more time ensuring that the game would better showcase the new Wii U hardware. It looks like a solid platformer, and the sharper visuals afforded by high-definition certainly don't hurt, but at the end of the day, the game doesn't seem like one that was designed with the Wii U in mind. The tablet controller, for instance--used to great effect by Ubisoft's competing platformer, Rayman Legends--is a bit boring to use in New Super Mario Bros. U co-op. It's more like an ancillary mode akin to Super Mario Galaxy co-op, and not one that many folks will gravitate to in lieu of playing one of the standard characters." - Jeff Mattas

Resident Evil 6 - "A lot of game demos disappoint at E3. But, Resident Evil 6 is the rare game that disappointed me three times over. Capcom clearly has a lot of faith in the next iteration of their blockbuster "survival horror" series. At first, I was excited to play an hour of the game, trying out the game's three different campaigns. But wow, I couldn't believe how simply awful each of the demos were. Somehow, by adding cover and the ability to move and shoot at the same time, the franchise feels far more difficult to control than ever before. I think RE fans are going to be livid when they get their hands on this." - Andrew Yoon

Star Wars 1313 - "I had a bad feeling about this when the presentation began with a video of all the LucasFilm teams involved in putting the game together, touting the performance capture and the actors doing their lines and the realism involved. Unfortunately, in the end, amidst all the pre-rendered in-game cinematic cut scenes, only a little bit of gameplay was shown, and that looked stiff and clunky." - John Keefer

Tomb Raider - "I love the new direction Crystal Dynamics is taking Lara Croft. However, I can't help but think all of the "tricks" they're employing feel antiquated. The E3 presentation takes so much control away from the player, that it might as well be a movie. I think gamers are getting tired of entirely scripted sequences. Even Uncharted dev Naughty Dog is going for emergent gameplay in The Last of Us. Lara Croft is supposed to be a survivor in this rebooted Tomb Raider--but what I saw was a sequence of bad decisions that the player had no control over." - Andrew Yoon

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