The 2013 E3 Epic Win Awards (part 5)
The day is finally here! It’s the day all of us here at GotGame bother to put on pants for all at the same time… it’s the day we give out our “Full of Win” awards!
The Oscars have “Best Picture,” the Grammys have “Album of the Year,” and the Tonys have “Best Musical.” We at the Epic Win Awards have the “Full of Win” awards, for who had the best E3 overall in regards to platforms, publishers, and individual titles. It’s the big cheese, the A+ gold star from us. It’s basically exactly like the Tony Awards, just more casual with a lot less singing (unless you give Ramon Aranda a White Russian cocktail – which can we please refrain from doing for once, team?).
Without further ado, the envelopes, please…
Platform Full of Win
And the Epic Win goes to… PlayStation 4.
This should come as no surprise to anyone – the PlayStation 4 had the momentum coming into E3 and simply spiked the ball in the endzone. With a gamer-friendly outlook, great games coming to the console (some exclusively to Sony consoles) and less-stringent policies surrounding DRM and always-on (and an on-the-ball PR team to spin them into perfection) the PS4 became the belle of the ball. For everything Xbox One had to offer, PS4 had a comeback. Even the Wii U got a boost by sitting back and letting people take notice; if PS4 hadn’t knocked out Xbox One early in the E3 fight, Nintendo wouldn’t have benefited.
Just exactly how pleased were we with PS4 at E3? Within mere days of E3’s conclusion, the Xbox One became the “Xbox One-Eighty,” announcing they were relaxing their always-on requirements and stringent policies on used and pre-owned games. You know… like the PlayStation 4.
Honorable Mention: Wii U
Publisher Full of Win
And the Epic Win goes to… Square Enix.
The Comeback Story of the year was Square Enix, but just barely. Square Enix left a foul taste in their core fans’ mouths with unimpressive showings from Final Fantasy MMOs and unimaginative releases. And when the RPG giant announced their first two E3 showings, Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII and Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, the general consensus was “Whoop-dee-doo.”
And then along came a slew of title announcements which landed home run after home run. With titles like Murdered: Soul Suspect, Thief, Final Fantasy XV, and Kingdom Hearts III, Square Enix went on a hot streak. Square Enix somehow managed to please their core fan base and many other gamers with a variety of new and favorite IPs, in a variety of genres, and across every platform, even down to mobile gaming. They simply just couldn’t miss with any shot they fired off this year.
The fact that this merely takes Square Enix off life support in the big picture for one more year is neither here nor there. 2013 is slated to be a banner year for Sq’enix, and if it doesn’t save their life, at least they went out with a bang.
Honorable Mention: Ubisoft, Capcom, EA.
Title Full of Win
And the Epic Win goes to… WATCH_DOGS.
It’s the game so nice they won it twice! Back to back Titles Full of Win for the Ubisoft hacker action game, WATCH_DOGS. No one can seem to get enough of this game. Every time any new information about the dubious activity of Aiden Pearce comes to light, I’m bombarded by emails and texts from amped gamers. It’s clear that not only is WATCH_DOGS watching us… we’re watching WATCH_DOGS‘ every move.
So what’s changed from E3 2012 to 2013? We’ve got a clearer idea of the plot and protagonist. We’ve seen some of his hacking skills and urban environment, and what Aiden can do with it, snarling traffic for miles building devastating pile-ups with just a flick of his smartphone, tapping into the traffic light mainframe, for one example. In the span of a minute, Aiden can learn everything about a person, from birth city to favorite brand of peanut butter. (Since I know I’m being watched by WATCH_DOGS, it’s Laura Scudder’s Old Fashioned peanut butter.)
What hasn’t changed is how obsessed we, the gaming public, are with the plot – the idea of the ctOS and someone with the power to use and abuse it is wholly plausible, wholly possible, and partially terrifying. As we become a more and more linked-in society with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more social networks than Justin Timberlake can be a supporting actor in, the tagline of WATCH_DOGS strikes home, and strikes a bit of fear in our hearts: Everything is connected, and connection is power.
That could be why gamers stood up and took notice when Xbox One demanded to be always on. That’s why gamers love WATCH_DOGS. It’s real, and it could happen. Some even say it is happening today in reality. And isn’t reality a highly-touted quality in gaming these days?
Honorable mention: Fantasia: Music Evolved, The Division, Titanfall.
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Did you miss any other part of the Epic Win Awards? Here’s the recap: