The Eurogamer Expo or as its more commonly known, EGX is one of the biggest game expo events in the UK. Every year the event shows off some of the most anticipated and desired games for the forthcoming year and beyond. With a split focus on both triple A titles as well as indie games, it’s a chance to show off just what amazing console and PC titles are being developed and coming to gamers.
The team at JoypadAndMe have been going for the past few years and 2016 is no exception. 2016 will be the 2nd year that the EGX event has been held at the new location, Birmingham NEC and proves to be one of the most popular years yet. With around 200 different games to check out and try it will be a complete shmorgasboard of gaming heaven.
There are a couple of games that im particularly looking forward to having a look at and I thought id mention them here and then look back after the event to see what I thought about them.
Gran Turismo Sport
Gran Turismo franchise has always been one of the biggest gaming addictions that ive had right back since the grand old days of the PlayStation 1. Countless hours of racing around tracks till I can see them in my sleep. Endless days of competing against the computer AI and then in later versions taking on all comers online and competing in our very own Gran Turismo Gamernights (ahh how fondly I remember those nights). Gran Turismo Sport is the next installment in the franchise and although not a numbered iteration, and to be honest there may not be another numbered Gran Turismo title depending on how the franchise continues its development, I’m sure that it will prove to be another competent, enticing racing game that will tickle that racing itch ive been having this generation. Yes, yes, I know Driveclub was a somewhat good racing game after many months ‘extra’ development after release. It just wasn’t a Gran Turismo game. I want that realism, that urge to jump into the next race, develop and tune the next car in my garage, push myself to complete on of the hellish endurance races. Now don’t get me wrong, ive had my issues with some of the Gran Turismo titles and I won’t be pulling any punches if GT Sport isn’t up to par but I can’t wait to see the development in car and driving mechanics as well as hopefully a jump in improved user interaction when it comes to online gaming. I want online leaderboards for lap times, I want specially held events that we can jump into and feel like we belong in a full race weekend, practice, qualifying and race. I want to see tyre wear and car damage made more realistic as well as a wide variety of cars. I’d really like to see the inclusion of trucks, bikes and similar racing variants but with a substantially smaller car roster than previous iterations i feel this won’t be the case.
Horizon: Zero Dawn
This is probably a no brainer as far as most are concerned. A new IP from Guerrilla Games. One that looks to be a beautiful blend of visual epicness and a suitable storyline laced with mystery and intrigue. Mechanised dinosaurs along with viking/native american tribes that use a combination of old school woodland hunting techniques and futuristic hacking, technology based shenanigans. This has been a game that has been on many people’s watch list since it was shown off during the E3 show in 2015. From the trailers ive seen, im looking forward to getting some hands on time with Horizon Zero Dawn and finding out if this is a game that will hold up to its hype. We’ve seen many games fall far short of their own hype especially this year so im hoping this won’t be one of them. Set to release in Feb 2017, this should be close to the final product as well so we should get a very good indication of how this will look and play at home. This will also be a great title to look at in combination with the latest iteration of PlayStation consoles running in 4K resolution. Will i be donning my fur skins and my laser hacking spear before sitting down to try out Horizon Zero Dawn……maybe not but we will see.
Call Of Duty Modern Warfare Remastered
This might sound like a strange one to most that have listened to me on the JoypadAndMe podcast but hear me out. Yes its true that I have no interest in playing the latest Call Of Duty iteration, Infinite Warfare. There’s just something about a Call Of Duty game set in the future….in space that doesn’t interest me in the slightest. That said, Modern Warfare Remastered is something that I am interested in. I have fond memories from playing back in the days of the PlayStation 3 with Modern Warfare. Playing with a mix of family members and random people online. Starting out as a ‘noob’ and working my way up. Learning the weapons, the maps, the loadouts and having an absolute blast playing. The thought of getting back to playing this but in an updated, remastered form on the latest console is something that I am looking forward to. No so much that I will be buying Infinate Warfare to get hold of it. Hopefully it will become available for sale separately later down the line but that won’t stop me from taking a quick look. The only issue with the Call Of Duty franchise is that they tend to have the largest queues during an EGX event and I’m not so interested in playing Modern Warfare Remastered that I will wait in a queue for 3-4 hours just to play one round!
South Park: The Fractured But Whole
Who can resist the idea of controlling Cartman, Stan and the gang as they become there superhero alter egos and completely send up the recent spate of Marvel and DC films. The original Stick Of Truth game became a cult success and has stuck in the hearts of many gamers since its release. Since Fractured But Whole (love the name) was announced, this has been high on the watch list and now that it is somewhat close to its release date its time to get excited for it. Yes its recently been delayed till the first quarter of 2017 but that still wont dampen my spirits for what im sure will be a fantastic title. This will however be an interesting time for me with regards to Fractured But Whole as I don’t often pre-order games but I have had this pre ordered since E3 2016 and im hoping that it will hold up to my faith in Ubisoft. If it even comes close to some of the Coon And Friends episodes that we have seen in South Park then im sure that my faith will be justified.
These next two titles arent the big triple A titles that showcase an event such as EGX but I have found that sometimes the smaller titles can steal the show. Indie titles have become increasingly popular so it gives even more incentive to keep an eye on smaller games and smaller developers for that next show stealing title.
JCB Pioneer Mars
An interesting title that isn’t due for release for some time yet speaks to me in some way. A survival/construction game set on the red planet might not sound like everyone’s favourite game but this could be a fun game for those that wanted No Man’s Sky to have had a little more construction involved. It depends how it goes. I hope that it has a deep crafting and building mechanic but at this moment it’s too early to tell. Screenshots look good and make me want to see more. Having a large construction company in the title like JCB could be a blessing or a disaster but we will find out soon enough.
Another smaller title that has caught my attention is Motorsport Management. A PC title that could do for racing what Football Manager did for…..well, football. I’ve always been interested in motorsport. Be it Formula 1, touring cars, stock cars, rally, basically if it ha four wheels and can go fast, im interested. The idea of being able to manage and develop a team in a game has always intrigued me. Ive seen different forms of this kind of game on mobile devices and have been tempted but i prefer to play more in-depth games that this will probably be on a larger screen. Ideally id love to see it on console but im not adverse to jumping onto the laptop and managing a racing team. Will this take pole position or be starting in the pit lane, time will tell.
Im sure we will see many other games while at the EGX show and hopefully some of them will persuade me to part with some hard earned cash when they are finally released. Look out for our pst EGX 2016 podcast where we discuss what we saw and more importantly what we thought of what we saw. Did the games live up to expectations? Did any fall far short of the mark? Lets find out.
Let me know in the comments section below if there is anything you are interested in seeing? Are you heading down to EGX this year? If so, what are you heading to first?