games / Previews

E3 2010: Bethesda E3 Round-Up – Rage and Brink

June 20, 2010 | Posted by Adam Larck

During E3, I had a chance to check out Bethesda and a few of the games they have coming out this year and next. While I didn’t get to Hunted: The Demon’s Forge due to another meeting, I did get a first look at Rage and played some of Brink. Read on for my thoughts on the games.

Rage (First Look)

While Bethesda and Id Software didn’t have a playable build of Rage available, since the game is over a year away from release, they did give us a first look of how the game is shaping up. Rage is an open world game that has players doing various quests to help the citizens of Wellspring and people living in the surrounding areas.

The quests will have players taking on different factions, such as the Authority, mutants, bandits and more, each with their own traits. Items available for the player include rocket launchers, crossbows, pistols, and more various weapons that the team didn’t show off. Each weapon will also have various ammo types that can be used during certain quests.

Other items included the wingstick, a bladed throwing weapon that can decapitate enemies, a RC bomb car that can be driven into a group of enemies and exploded, personal turrets, sentry bots and lock grinders. Players will also be able to play various mini-games for money and drive buggies around with various guns mounted on it.

The playthrough they showed us contained a few quests where they showed off some of the guns and items mentioned above, and ended with a few bigger enemies the game will offer and a giant mutant bigger than most buildings around it.

The game is shaping up nicely, but reminded me a bit of Borderlands, without the huge number of guns to choose from. This isn’t a bad thing by any means, and the game looks like it could be a good title if they really flesh out the areas a player will travel to and the quests available.

Brink (Hands-On)

Brink is a multiplayer shooter offering drop-in/drop-out co-op. Players will be able to make their own characters and customize them to their own personal look. There are a lot of options to choose from, and more will unlock as you go through the game. A character’s look can also be changed in the cutscene if you see something that needs to be changed or you want to add something.

The game will also allow gun and ability customizations as well, such as gun stocks, sights, ammo and more. Abilities can be upgraded between the four main classes offered, but players can also have unique upgrades to their own characters as well.

The four classes each have their own specialty, such as hacking and taking another player’s form, resupplying ammo, healing players or just being a soldier with a turret. They’re all needed in a mission, but can be changed on the fly from computer terminals on the map

After doing a brief tutorial to get myself familiar with the controls, I noticed the big mechanic the team has been promoting, Smart, is coming along nicely. Smart is the sprint function, but will also let players jump, run on rails, slide and more on the fly. This really was nice when it came to dodging enemy fire and trying to get to locations.

When I got into the full game, I paired with the CEO of Splash Damage and another player not really familiar with shooters. Even with the other player’s low level, he was able to help with his turret while I hacked the system needed to go to the next part of the mission. It really showed that the developers are trying to make it so that new players can still support advanced players, even if they are on different levels.

Overall, the game was fun and looks like it will offer a strong multiplayer experience. However, I’m curious how the single player will hold up, as it looks like you’ll just play with AI instead of humans. Look for an interview with the CEO about the game in the upcoming weeks, and expect the game to release in spring of 2011.

Parting Thoughts:

Overall, Bethesda gave an impressive meeting with the three games I was able to play. While it would have been nice to have played Rage, the game looks to be coming along nicely and I can’t wait to hear about the multiplayer in the game. Brink is shaping up to be a strong shooter with drop-in/drop-out co-op, and seems to have done a good job bridging the gap between people not skilled in shooters and FPS veterans. Fallout: New Vegas is bringing back everything that people liked in Fallout 3 and more, and will be one of the top titles this fall.

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Adam Larck

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