Welcome boys and girls to the super fantabulous E3 2014 edition of The Mick’s Picks! This time around, I dig through the throngs of E3 trailers we witnessed last week in order to offer up my list of which burrowed their way into our brains the deepest.
It’s a tough task to pick only a handful of trailers and label them as the must-sees of this year’s expo, but thankfully, it was made much easier by having true standouts. What makes a standout, you ask? Well, I have to be thinking about it long-after its debut, and it has to have convinced me to purchase the game it is advertising!
Now, I want to first point out that there were a few tough calls. Some of the videos shown during the conferences and on the show floor were absolutely mesmerizing. The Assassin’s Creed Unity cinematic trailer is a great example of something that almost made it onto my list because, well, it is extremely awesome. That Tears for Fears cover mixed with the French revolution setting was like peanut butter and jam! However, after some reflection, I decided not to keep it on my list because it was pretty much the same as every other Assassin’s Creed trailer.
Oh and also, I think I should point out that I don’t consider gameplay demo videos to be trailers.
Alright, on with the show!
I am not into MMOs. I rarely enjoy FPS titles. Yet, with its perfectly-paced, tightly-knit, and overall epic E3 trailer, Bungie has finally convinced me that Destiny will not only be worth checking out, but that it might actually be one of the most exciting next-gen (well, now current-gen) experiences.
The word around the water cooler is that I’m not the only convert. Many folks I know who were once dismissing the game as just another space shooter are actually now making plans to play together (with the sweet new white PS4 bundle) after witnessing the new trailer.
Why wouldn’t they be? The story presented on-screen is alluring, the action showcased looks satisfying, and the gameplay witnessed seems quite varied (for a shooter). Throw in that sweeping orchestral soundtrack, and you’ve got a recipe for success.
Oh and for the record, I didn’t select this because I’m a Bungie fanboy or something. I’m far from it. I’ve actually (oh God I’m going to get murdered for this) never played a Halo game. *looks around sheepishly*
4. Dead Island 2
The first Dead Island game had an announcement trailer that, to this day, is considered one of the best ever made. It was unique and heartwrenching. Its sequel has a pretty stellar trailer as well, albeit for completely different reasons.
I’m not sure if it’s the hilarity behind the idea of a man who stubbornly refuses to change his lifestyle after being bitten by zombie, or the sheer awesomeness of all the mayhem that takes place around him, but this trailer is one that you could watch over and over and over again.
I think it’s that infectious song.
“I’m the bomb and about to blow up…”
Damn that's catchy.
Where the original game's trailer painted a beautifully tragic picture, this new game seems to crank up the camp factor to 11 in order to match its setting: an absurdist-yet-strangely spot-on version of L.A., land of excess and eternal self-centeredness. Think of the possibilities such a scenario might present! Will you have to face off against egomaniacs who refuse to evacuate the city, or even refuse to accept that they’ve been bitten (like our friend in the trailer)? Will you get to drive around Venice beach in a death van, mowing over hordes of undead porn stars or daddy's girls who were there for their daily tanning sessions? Will you get to play as Jack Black and rob the zombies of their expensive designer shoes?
All I know is that this will be one hell of a fun romp.
I'm the bomb and about to blow up, I'm the bomb and about to blow up...
3. The Division
“It’s hard to watch something you love destroy itself.”
It’s with those words that the hard-hitting, visually-striking trailer for The Divison opens up. Set amidst the melancholiest Christmas you’ve ever experienced, you get to hear the victims of the game’s disaster deal with the worst possible losses, their inability to take care of themselves, and their inevitable descent into madness or death.
The theme throughout the trailer is invisibility, paralleling mankind turning a blind eye on itself in its darkest hour. As things move along, a man who has suffered great loss is finally “seen” by a group of people who have decided to "be human" again.
It's a short, but inspiring trailer that makes the upcoming squad game seem like there might be one heck of a heart at its core.
2. Ori and the Blind Forest
There really isn’t much to say about this visually-striking game, or its trailer. With no words spoken and only a beautiful score to set the tone, you, the viewer, are taken on an emotional journey as you witness two unlikely friends embark on a journey to save their land. You’ll feel curious, excited, and ultimately, sad, by the end of this 2 minute masterpiece.
And you’ll desperately desire the game in order to play the whole thing and feel those same emotions tenfold.
1. Valiant Hearts
Just like the previous item on this list, Valiant Hearts’ short trailer manages to make you feel more in its 3 minute lifespan than most full-length Hollywood movies ever hope to achieve.
It’s difficult to imagine a game that takes place during World War I being anything but utterly devastating, but thanks to the beautiful cartoon artwork from the folks at Ubisoft (who gave us the colorful Rayman reboots), there is indeed a small sense of levity to be found, along with an interesting adventure game.
However, it is impossible not to get choked up by the end of this. I warn you now: if you are a manly man with an image to uphold, watch this from the safe confines of your home.
Truly, this is the most memorable trailer from this year’s show.
*wipes the tears from his eyes*
There you have it, folks. Those were the trailers have stuck with me the most since the end of E3. Which trailers hit you in the feels? Why? Comment below!
The Mick's Picks is a column where Scottie "The Mick" McFall offers up cool and exciting multimedia recommendations. Music, movies, games, comics... you never know what he'll choose to cover next! Send him a message on Twitter with recommendations of your own.
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