Aaron's E3 Travelogue Feature - The Next Level

Aaron's E3 Travelogue

Taking a stroll through the halls of E3 to explore the best and worst the show had to offer.

Article by Aaron Drewniak (Email)
May 25th 2005, 07:34PM

Despite the large number of appointments Chris dumped on my shoulders for my first E3, (which would have been fantastic if I didn't have to write about them), I did have plenty of time to wander around on my own whims during the three-day event, and play any game that came into my hands. In case this would be mildly interesting to someone who isn't me, I've tossed all these loose ends into a single article for your perusal, and also to offer some proof that I wasn't uniformly positive about everything I played.

Steel Lancer Arena International (PS2)

This game made me sad. Sad because they took an Xbox game and mangled it in order to fit a lesser console, twisting and bending both graphics and gameplay until it was only a shadow of the Phantom Crash I knew and loved. It became literally too painful for me to keep playing, even though I was winning without bothering to use optic camo against the braindead AI, just another way it's a step down from the original. Thanks a heap, Konami.

Final Fight: Streetwise (PS2, Xbox)

I wish this had been a joke because then I could at least laugh at it, but unfortunately this excuse for a game is all too real...and by that I mean really sucks. Aside from having nothing to do with the original Final Fight, and filled with rejects from the Toxic Avenger movies, the actual combat is stiff and unappealing, like a poor imitation of Spikeout. I'll just get the Capcom Classics Collection instead and stick with the real Final Fight.

Beat Down (PS2)

It has a lot of potential, but it still needs a lot of work. The actual fighting is great, not feeling shallow without having the depth of something like Tekken, and the customization and gang options make the game fun just by themselves. However, the graphics look like a first gen PS2 game; jagged, shimmery, and dark like seeing stars after a poke in the eye. The areas are far too tiny for something that aspires to a GTA genre, and the camera is crap. Sad it was the best beat 'em up at the show.

Urban Reign (PS2)

A two on two fighter for people who hate themselves. While the double team moves are interesting, they weren't enough to save this game from being dull and feeling just pointless. You'll have a lot more fun digging out your copy of Tekken Tag than bothering with this shallow beat 'em up.

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