Hey gang, Valkor here. And I’m checking in with round two of our TOV gaming coverage from the companies that visited the NYC area last week. Last round it was all about Sony and the Playstation. Next up is Ubisoft, who also put together a little holiday showcase, demonstrating some of their hottest titles coming out later this year on the Playstation 3 as well as the Wii-U. Unlike the Sony event, there was only one game that wasn’t hands on and that was Assassins Creed 3, everything else was all you can play.
Rayman Legends (Wii-U, Launch title, hands on) – Hot on the heels of Rayman Origins, Rayman Legends gives you that same look and feel as its predecessor, but adds some new play mechanics involving the Wii-U tablet controller. With the tablet, you’ll play as a character called Murfy and he performs several functions such as turning Lums purple (higher lum count, racking up higher scores), can assist Rayman in getting to levels that are out of his reach, and in one area Murfy was used to turn a half wheel with spikes, turning the wheel just right so that Rayman can get by without touching the spikes. Another unique scene had Murfy assisting Rayman through elements that only he could see (on teh tablet). And finally another interesting level and it was the most fun was, the musical stage. Think of the “frantic chase” levels in Rayman Origins only in this level, as Rayman is racing through the stage, Murfy is knocking out these eyes to the beat of the music. The you have to poke the eyes when they're fully open and the point is to get the highest score possible... I think. The music in this game is just phenomenal and mixing it up to the beat of Murfy punching out the eyes, plus whatever Rayman is doing on screen – such a blast! Legends is a launch title and anyone looking to invest in a Wii-U… this might be the first title you’d want to pick up.
ZombiU (Wii-U, Launch title) – Not being the biggest fan of zombies, but a fan of survival horror, I went into ZombiU with a little hesitation – mostly stemming from the fact that I knew very, very little of the game. But I walked away impressed. In ZombiU, you play as a random survivor in the midst of the zombie apocalypse that's taking place in London. The spin of the game is that if you die, that character is dead and you’ll pick up from another character. The twist is that the character that you played with previously then becomes a zombie, which you can kill to retrieve items it has on its person. You can use the tablet to search for items, pick locks, and access items in your backpack. But the downside to that is if your access your backpack, it leaves you open to a zombie attack. So you gotta be on point. The game was hands on, but I wasn’t able to play it because it was so crowded. Seriously, each time I tried to get in to get some play time, someone was already there, even when I was in the room, which was towards the end of the night. *sigh* But I liked what I saw and it looks like the Wii-U will actually have a strong launch. Oh yes and Ubisoft was doing a little "zombification", which I was more than happy to take part.
Marvel Avengers: Battle for Earth (Dec 31st 2012, hands on) – Last year I got the chance to attend Ubisoft’s Kinect Event at their office in San Francisco. One of the games present was Power Up Heroes that allowed you to use your body as the controller in a fighting game scenario. Ubisoft has taken that idea and applied it to the Marvel Universe. In the game you get about 20 characters to choose from such as Iron Man, Hulk, Magneto, Venom, Wolverine, Thor and many more. Battles are two on two with each character sporting four unique moves; you get the basic punching and kicks, tossing in super and ultra moves. It would definitely take some getting used to, especially if you’ve never played many Kinect games (me!), but after a quick walkthrough, I was all in. The animation was a bit jerky, but the game isn’t unplayable. I love that backgrunds, which are rick and bold in color and have a comic book feel to them. Overall it was actually it was a lot of fun! Plus the fact that you have so many characters from the Marvel roster and you’re actually performing the moves, it’s just crazy!
Far Cry 3 (December 2012, Hands on) – I felt kinda bad going into the room to check out Far Cry 3 because I knew very, very little about the game. Though I don’t play Halo or Mass Effect, I know about those games that it warrants my interest. But Far Cry… I don’t really know anyone that plays it and I’ve never delved into the series. Anywho, in Far Cry 3 you play as Jason Brody who’s stranded on a tropical island caught in the midst of a struggle. You have your standard 1st person shooter moves, mixing it up with cover based moves, you can also stalk an enemy (or animals), and do a nice takedown. My first play through? Not good! Oh the game is great and I’ve seen people play it to precision; it’s not the game, it’s me – I suck. I admit it.
Assassins Creed 3 (October 30th 2012, demo) – I already mentioned AC 3 in my Sony preview piece and at that time I only got to see the Connor on land. This round I got to see him as he commandeered his own ship and was involved in a naval battle. The water looks so good and it makes you wish you could jump through the screen and dive right in… minus when the sea storm hit. I just want to play this game now! No more “just watching”, let’s get it in!
Rocksmith (Bass DLC) – I was all over Rocksmith last year and I think the idea of a teaching game is unique and also a lot of fun if learning how to play a guitar is where your interest lay. Well Ubisoft is taking the Rocksmith concept to the next level by adding a Bass guitar! With this new DLC all the music you may have already purchased will be reconfigured to work with the Bass guitar. Plus you’ll be able to play multiplayer style, alongside the original controller. There are also plans for the game to launch on the PC; there will be a re-release of the original disc with the new DLC (including the Bass), and Rocksmith will soon go international, so you guys overseas will finally get the chance to check out this title and hopefully Ubisoft will launch an international disc showcasing hot artist from all over the world. I’d love a disc based on K-Pop group H.O.T. (I mentioned this to the rep) because some of their guitar tracks are insane.
Ubisoft never fails to impress me, even with titles that I might consider to be their weakest they’re usually a lot of fun and that’s what it’s all about. I’ll have more from Ubisoft in the coming months - especially post Gamescon (sadly I won’t be attending this year, maaaaaybe next year). Either way We’ll definitely have more Ubisoft coming your way so stay tuned to the pages of TOV for this and more.