I'm going to play Mr Optimistic and say that, while it didn't meet all of my expectations, E3 2012 was a lot of fun. No, I wasn't there, but, as you all would know, it's still quite enjoyable to watch the festivities via the many accessible streams and coverages around the world wide web.
So yes, I also enjoyed Microsoft. Usher aside, the fact that we saw Tomb Raider and Black List gameplay footage should have been enough to get gamers excited.
Unfortunately, expectations of new hardware and the hope for new exclusives made the company's showing seem like a disaster.
But I'd say it was a success, mainly because of what we saw on the Halo front. I think it's about time we took a step back and stopped expecting the world from Microsoft, and just take in whatever it is it offers.
I'm not sure that "Halo" crowd wants anything other than a Halo experience, of which we're going to get if reports from the E3 showroom floor are to be believed. MMGN.com's own Ben Salter said Halo 4 feels like 343 Industries "missed the golden opportunity to inject some much needed fresh life into the tiring series," but I'd argue that Halo 4 doesn't need fresh life: if there are subtle changes, enhancements and additions, why does the core experience need to change?
After all, we've been stuck with the same New Super Mario Bros. experience for a while now, decades if you bundle in the original Super Mario Bros. games, but yet there are cries from (some) gamers for multiplayer shooters to reinvent the wheel with every new addition.
I'd argue that Halo 4 doesn't need fresh life: if there are subtle changes, enhancements and additions, why does the core experience need to change?
I don't personally consider myself to be one of the millions of Halo elite, but I'm thereabouts: a few days worth of online play in Halo's 2 through Reach, and I consider myself to be a "Normal" player. The difference with Halo in comparison to other shooters is that we don't see it every year, and we at least get a little coherence and emotion with a campaign and protagonist that gamers actually look forward to.
Calls for "change" certainly undermine the vagueness of the term: "change" in a multiplayer shooter can come in any number of ways, from how things are unlocked, to how lobbies are set up, to how players are ranked. They can change and move around as much as is needed to make the experience smoother, but if the core gameplay is what has attracted so many to the series already, then perhaps tradition is more important than a completely new Halo experience.
If a Halo game doesn't feel, well, "Halo", there are probably major issues with it. I certainly don't disagree that Halo 4 has failed to generate the same amount of hype and interest as Halo 3, but to suggest that it needs to change, or that it feels too much like other games, I think is a stance pretty far removed from what Halo fans actually expect from the experience.
By Gaetano Prestia - Bio
What did you think of the Halo 4 E3 showing? Do you want to see drastic changes, or are you happy with the good 'ol Halo experience?