E3 – the games

From the same ‘ol to nothing ever seen before



Today’s article is the second in a two-part feature on the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) held in L.A. May 11-13. Yesterday’s article gave a brief overview of what E3 is. Check it out if you really want to know. Today’s focuses on the actual games showcased at the expo – and mostly just the top game in each genre.


Sadly, this area was possibly the least represented category at the Entertainment Expo. And sadly the top sports game is a sequel that will possibly rehash its last installment. Electronic Arts’ “Madden NFL 2001” will probably play exactly like the 2000 game, but its biggest gain is in the graphic department. Large tweaks – like higher resolution player models – and smaller ones – like including wristbands and other gear on each player – will make it look as good as the eye-candy PlayStation 2 version.


Another ill-represented category with its top game also a sequel. However, when the game is LucasArts’ “Escape from Monkey Island,” it’s easy to forgive. The funniest and most beloved series in adventure gaming will be getting its fourth installment sometime this year. It was unexpected but a joy to hear. It will also bear some remarkable changes. It will change from its two-dimensional (although quite impressive) graphics, to a three dimensional world. It will be running on the same engine that ran another of LucasArts’ adventure games – “Grim Fandango.” While the game play will be similar to the previous ones in the series, with a new story and the designers of “Sam & Max” at the helm, the game will take many precariously hilarious turns.


One of the most anticipated games and one that has created the most buzz falls into the action genre. “Max Payne” from Gathering of Developers will change how you look at games. This dark game pits you as Max Payne, a New York cop wrongfully accused of killing his family. You take on the actual killers, evil gang members, in their element – the city. And your surroundings will look like nothing else before. It will run at a resolution of 1024×1024, supplying detail never imagined. It will also take on certain cinematography elements – as certain events occur the game will go into slow motion, and à la the movie “The Matrix,” the point of view will rotate around the object in question, and then finally return control to the player once the significant action is complete. The game will be like controlling an interactive movie with a tremendous amount of special effects.