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E3 Never Ends

July 17th, 2008 by Troy Goodfellow · 5 Comments · E3

More previews at Gameshark:

Halo Wars

These are the two games that I am (at this point) most excited about. Halo Wars makes the crucial (but obvious) decision that console real time strategy games have to be very different from their PC predecessors.

And Spore will either sell 10 million copies or be the most brilliant failure in gaming history. If people get what is going on, then this will be a huge hit. If the Sims audience does not get what Will Wright is trying to do, then this will be another Psychonauts,

From where I sit, this is jaw-dropping brilliant. But I’m an idiot.


5 Comments so far ↓

  • Chris Nahr

    My question about Spore is the same as always: is there any substantial gameplay after you’ve designed your creature? Your preview briefly talks about trading and fighting with other tribes, and collecting tokens. Are those actions complex enough for a proper strategy game, or just busywork to show off your creatures?

  • Troy Goodfellow

    With only 500 words, I couldn’t get into too much detail, but here’s a little more.

    The actions are pretty simple. This isn’t a really deep strategy experience like you’ll find in Civ. But the play is much more goal oriented than in The Sims.

    Take the tribal section. You have a hard population cap of six to start with, and you can only raise this cap by advancing to the next tribal stage. This means fulfilling the condition of eliminating or allying with another tribe.

    War is relatively costly, since you need food to heal, but if you don’t send everybody then you might be outnumbered when you get there.

    You could play nice with music and dances, but you need your chief to do that (he’s the band leader) and if he gets trapped in a hostile village you lose your strongest unit for a while.

    An alternative strategy is to weaken your neighboring tribe by attacking their foraging parties or just stealing their food.

    So not really deep thinking here, but the game is captivating in spite of this. Creation is an important mechanic here because it gives a sense of ownership.

    As I write in the preview, though, the big hurdle will be variable game experiences. Will playing with my bird creature be that much different from playing with my tiger creature? I didn’t get a good sense of how each play session will differentiate itself in the way that say, a Playful Sim is different from a Studious Sim.

  • JonathanStrange

    Fingers and tentacles crossed hoping that Spore’s creature feature and other gameplay amounts to a classic.

  • Natus

    Wow, Troy: you’re writing cheek-by-jowl with the infamous FFG boardgame fanboy Michael Barnes!

    So will Halo Wars ever come to the PC, or is the whole point that it’s an RTS for consolers? Looks cool, even though I never joined in the whole Halo love.

  • Justin Fletcher

    Good to hear that Halo Wars is looking good, but did you get a sense of the enthusiasm for the title? My question has always been: Do Halo fans *want* an RTS?