Here is the first of my 3 part report after spending 3 days at a trade fair, Gamescom, held at the Koelnmesse in Cologne.
This year’s Gamescom was my first and, fortunately, I wasn’t alone because another Hackinformer staff member, Freakler, came from another part of Germany to his third Gamescom. We were staying in Troisdorf, which is about 20 minutes from Koelnmesse (that’s where Gamescom takes place) by train.
I’ll now proceed to talk about different days (August 5-7) and the games I played.
Our first day was also the first day of the whole Gamescom thanks to press tickets. We arrived at Koelnmesse at about 9:30 am, then we went to get our press lanyards and headed straight to tourniquets. Well, straight, before that I asked for a new lanyard, because the one I received was dirty. But right after that, we passed the tourniquets and we were officially at Gamescom.
We went immediately to the Entertainment Area and as we were standing in the main hallway, I must say that I felt overwhelmed. It was SO HUGE. And the atmosphere… I didn’t know what to do first. We began to walk through hallway without knowing where to go first, and suddenly we noticed Playstation booth in one of the halls, so we decided to go there. There was nothing that immediately caught our eye, so we left this hall after a while and went to the first hall on the right from the stairs and right after entering this hall, I noticed Nintendo area and Legend of Zelda Tri Force Heroes booth and decided to play it because I remembered seeing the game on E3. Because the game required 3 players (and Freakler didn’t want to play), I was teamed with two random Germans. After initial discussion about the game difficulty, we started playing a three-part level. In the first two parts, we learnt various game mechanics and then we faced the boss that we beat on the second try
My overall feeling about the game was great. Controls were simple and we were taught everything we needed to know. I’m looking forward to playing this game with my friends.
After that we decided to stay in this hall and went to Koei Tecmo booth where I could play Samurai Warriors 4-II. The game looks nice and is fun to play, surely a must-buy for musou/Warriors fans. Freakler then left so I was continuing alone.
Behind the corner was Square Enix area and their first game I played was Dragon Quest Heroes. I liked the character design, and the ability to cast different magic spells, which is something that’s not often seen in Warriors games these days.
Next on my list was Final Fantasy Explorers, which was announced to be coming to the west in 2016 only 6 days before Gamescom. I played the one available quest as a Dragoon class and I totally loved it. Can’t wait to play the full version.
Then I thought I could as well play Final Fantasy Type-0 (I haven’t actually played it before) to see how it compares to the PSP version. It was on X-Box One and controls were in German, so… PSP version on PS Vita all the way. ^_^
Then I returned to the Nintendo area to play StarFox Zero. There were only 6 Wii U’ and no limit for playing (and there were 3 different missions) which resulted in 50 minutes long waiting (50 minutes for StarFox Zero on a Press Day? Come on!). When I finally got to playing I found that controls of flying were inverted and it couldn’t be changed because it was a demo version. But the game itself left a positive impression on me. Every aspect of it is fantastic – characters, models, environment.
I was going to go to Star Wars: Battlefront after StarFox but then I decided to go to a few “smaller” games before. The first one was LEGO Dimensions. I had Batman, Gandalf and Wyldstyle. I played the whole session with help of a girl from the staff who sometimes didn’t know what to do but we eventually figured it out and I really grew fond of the interactions that can be made using the figures and the platform.
Then I took off to the hall where Star Wars Battlefront was. Before going to EA area, I went to try Cuphead to Microsoft booth. You know, the indie game inspired by 1930s cartoons that was revealed at E3. I was playing with a guy who was there because of E3 too. The game looks pretty but is a little bit bugged (for example, we suddenly disappeared from the screen and died) and VERY challenging. After trying out 3 different levels and eventually dying in all of them, my partner left. I gave it one last shot and though I didn’t finish the level, I felt that the learning curve was there and all that this game takes is time. So even though I didn’t do well, I would like to play it more.
After Cuphead, I entered EA’s part of the hall, which was huge and I went to play Unravel. Its E3 revelation is one of my best memories of this year’s E3 because the creator was so passionate and emotional. And the game itself? Fantastic. Perfect. I couldn’t get enough of it. I was stuck a few times but I always found a solution. It was such a wonderful gaming experience. Seriously, Yarny (the character made of yarn that players control) is one of the most ingenious creatures I’ve ever seen.
I met with Freakler again and we headed to Star Wars: Battlefront. The stage was Battle of Hoth, we played in two teams. I was on the Rebels’ side and we ended up winning the battle. I was doing alright, considering that I haven’t played a shooter in 2 years. The game’s great, I finally felt those Star Wars vibes that I missed in E3 footage. Plus it was nice to get a handclap from the staff after the battle.
Then we went to Need For Speed which was right next to it. Oh man, that was something. First was picking a car and the customization (which we had 4 minutes for). I picked Porsche, the car customization was smooth and quick. Next was actual driving. Even though I haven’t played a racing game in quite a long time, I had absolutely no problems with driving here and the background music was making it even better. I felt like back in Underground/Underground 2. I hope the full game will be this good, Ghost Games/EA!
Oh yeah, I almost forgot that Freakler crashed his PS4 (YES, it was actually a PS4).
That was the last thing I did in the EA area that day. I liked how there was a stage where something was constaly going on, like interviews with developers, live playing FIFA, etc.
After that, Freakler and I were just walking around Gamescom without a clear plan. We played Street Fighter V for a while, that was fun, even though we both are Street Fighter noobs.
Then I saw Tearaway Unfolded and I thought I could have a look myself at how they dealt with some things that required Vita’s functions (touchscreen, rear touchpad, etc.). I must say that they did a good job and PS4 owners who haven’t played the PS Vita game will be able to enjoy it to the fullest. Still, I’m sad that Vita lost one of its exclusivities but at least more people will be able to experience Tearaway. We also asked PlayStation staff about Vitas, but they said they didn’t have any. What a bummer. (we actually found some later, but that will be in Part 2 :P)
At that time, booths were slowly closing/not allowing more people to queue, which is why we didn’t play Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain that day. We played Just Cause 3 instead, because it was empty. The game was fun with all those explosions and crazy jumping but for me nothing especially memorable. Then we headed back home.
I hope you enjoyed this. If you think it was too long, I promise next two parts will be shorter. In the next article I’ll be talking about Day 2, which among other things includes meeting up with the Zett and playing with DevKit Vitas!