The Best Designed Doesn’t always mean the best looking
Microsoft Just wrapped up there 2019 E3 Press Conference, but that just means all the trailers are out in high definition. While we were given the now standard – reboots, remakes and sequels, there were a few new designs, new ideas and even some old games with not so much reworked design, but updated design assets.
So, here’s your obligatory list of Microsoft’s best designed games of E3 2019. But before I go into this list, design doesn’t mean best looking. Design means the form and function of the medium are equal parts. So, games – just because it looks good, doesn’t mean it’s a great design. The design comes from the gameplay, the style, the story, but most importantly; the function. Without form and function, you don’t have good design.
Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order
So, I’m not the biggest Star Wars game fan, but this looks like an interesting take on the lore. With vine covered ATATs and familiar characters, it has a very familiar vibe, with clear throwbacks to Luke and R2D2, but also foreign enough to make me intrigued. Respawn Entertainment has built and designed a lot of great games and Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order, has no reason not to be another great hit. While the game has a hint of generic vibes, it’s nice seeing a story driven single player third person game. Kind of like the rebooted Tomb Raider, I love a game that lets you take in the atmosphere at your own pace.
Microsoft Flight Simulator
The whole idea of real satellite imagery and the rise of 3D imagery make me very interested in this title. Programs like Google Earth and Apple Maps look breathtaking with 3D turned on. so much so the Google Maps VR experience was on another level for some people.
I’m not sure how Azura plays into this, but I’ve played these games more to decompress. This, like American Truck Simulator have a calming vibe to it, and to see the whole world in such detail seems like a great game. Plus, the idea that this is being built for console, makes me wonder if the controls will be simpler. While I don’t have issues with the controls for the past games (after all it’s a highly detailed and highly revered simulator franchise.) something about just using an xbox controller to travel the world, seems like a great lazy Sunday afternoon experience.
CD Projekt Red is sort of a weird interest for me. While I own all the Witcher Games, I’ve only played about 4 hours of the first series. That said, the third Witcher seems like an awesome game and from other reviews, looks as if CD Projekt Red has evolved in storytelling, design and gameplay. Plus, who doesn’t love a good Synthwave inspired dystopian story driven game.
This game just bleeds style and the mechanics, world and characters behind it seem so detailed. This is probably the one I’m waiting for the most.
Way to the Woods
Something about this trailer gives me all the feels. The style is timeless, kind of like The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker was. With an 18-year-old developer behind it, I’m intrigued to see Anthony Tan’s take on this. With the developer saying the game would be around 3 hours long, I’m generally ok with that. A good – designed game, doesn’t need to be long, in fact – I welcome a short game. Especially if the design, story and gameplay all cover what it needs to cover.
The game also intrigues me, is it a post-apocalyptic world, is it some sort of dream or fantasy world? The game and what I’ve seen from the short trailer reminds me of a Studio Ghibli title… and that again, gives me all the feels. I can’t wait to try this out when it finally releases.
Age of Empires II Definitive Edition
I’m a huge – huge – huge AOE fan and seeing Microsoft bringing this game to modern resolutions but without changing the graphics or design is just a love letter to all AOE fans everywhere. The game is a masterpiece in terms of RTS titles and seeing this get the modern-day treatment while respecting the design of the original game, makes this probably my top E3 Best Deigned Game of this list. I may be bias since I used to play this series constantly, back in the day, but it’s also my blog, my opinion and nothing I write here actually matters.
First off, let me start by saying my top 3 hated “marketing terms” are 1. Game Changer 2. Driving Force within the industry 3. Transformative
That said, the idea of what this highly marketed content says / not said, does sound promising. While I would say, just get a PC, Microsoft has always done a great job with online content and creating a unified user experience across all games and even devices.
Like the upcoming sequel/remake/reboot – Streets of Rage; Battletoads seems like a soulless money grab. The art is uninspired, the levels look thrown together – reaching for that nostalgic throwback with the sewer scene. Unless the reviews say something different, I’m extremely skeptical about this one. I won’t say anything about the developer, since I have no idea who Diala Studios is and while I’m not sure how much input Rare had for this title, I’m assuming they either don’t care, or just want the money. Either way, this is probably the most disappointing title.