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E3 2011’s biggest no-shows

5. Final Fantasy Versus XIII

Impressive as it was, the first gameplay footage of Final Fantasy XIII-2 wasn't enough to distract us from the biggest glaring omission at Square-Enix's E3 booth: Final Fantasy Versus XIII. For many of us, Versus is the most exciting unknown in the Fabula Nova Crystallis: Final Fantasy series, because of how strikingly different it looks from other FF spinoffs.

Developed by the Kingdom Hearts team, it's an action adventure with a story set in a completely new universe (despite the XIII in the title, it has nothing to do with XIII). The world itself looks like a huge departure from the usual Final Fantasy fare, and that's what intrigues us – it's bizarre to see FF-style characters in a comparatively realistic setting, especially since you can spot real-world locations (like St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice and Tokyo’s Shinjuku) in what few glimpses Square-Enix has released so far.     


Above: We haven't seen much since this extended trailer from 2009

Square-Enix has already repeatedly told fans not to hold their breath for Final Fantasy Versus XIII, but the information blackout is getting ridiculous at this point. It's been five years since Versus was initially unveiled at E3 2006, and we don't know much more today than we did then. It's not the long development time that worries us, necessarily, it's that we haven't gotten more than a smattering of small updates since then, most of which were delay announcements. With FFXIII finished and no new Kingdom Hearts on the horizon, we're ready to see more of this. 


6. Half-Life 2: Episode 3

Valve hasn’t avoided E3 quite as rigorously as, say, Rockstar or Blizzard – it was at E3 2009 that we got our first taste of Left 4 Dead 2, after all – but the company’s absence was total this year, making for yet another show that ended without so much as a whisper of when we’ll see Gordon Freeman’s next add-on adventure (or Dota 2, for that matter).


Above: And once again, we’re reduced to illustrating an entry about it with this old thing

In the four years since the release of Half-Life 2: Episode 2 with The Orange Box, we’ve seen exactly two pieces of concept art, and some murmurs that Episode 3 might include sign language, but that’s about it. And while we could make yet another jab about Valve not understanding the point of episodic gaming, those wore out their welcome sometime around mid-2008. Don’t get us wrong, Valve’s other stuff has been great, and making Team Fortress 2 free-to-play is a big deal, but isn’t it time to throw Half-Life fans a bone? Please?


7. Respawn and Bungie's unannounced games

Forgive our impatience. We understand that building an entirely new IP takes a really, really long time and that we shouldn’t expect any details at all during this nascent period – especially when there are competing lawsuits and publisher switches involved – but come on. When the developers behind gaming’s two biggest shooters – Respawn’s Call of Duty and Bungie’s Halo – announce they’re leaving those franchises behind to create entirely new engines, stories and universes, it’s hard to remain realistic or rational. You want info and, despite both companies warning fans they wouldn’t be at E3 2011, you want info now.


Above: You also want to see something other than this photo of Respawn’s Jason West (left) and Vince Zampella. We know we do, anyway

Will Bungie’s next game be an MMO? Will Respawn take the Modern Warfare formula into the far-flung future? Can either developer top the success of its previous series? These will have to remain rumors and speculation for the time being… possibly until E3 2012.


8. Sorcery

After its announcement at Sony’s E3 press conference last year, there hasn’t been a lot of news on Sorcery, the magic-focused fantasy adventure built around Move. It appeared at the Gamescom expo last August, and a blurb on its developer’s website from February says that the project is “in full-swing,” but Sony was mysteriously silent on the game this year. It did, however, have some new Move-centric titles to show off, which led some to speculate that Sorcery had actually turned into Medieval Moves: Deadmund’s Quest.

This doesn’t appear to be the case at all (Sony’s still promoting Sorcery, and if nothing else, the two titles have different developers), but Sorcery’s absence after last year’s polished-looking demo is a little puzzling. Will it be the game that ends up justifying Move’s existence to hardcore gamers? We’ll have to wait a while longer to find out.


9. Devil's Third

Seeing as Devil’s Third was first announced at E3 2010, we were really hoping to see it this year – but, once again, no dice. Instead, all we got was a teaser video in which Japanese comedian Masaki “Hard Gay” Sumitani invades the decadent studios of developer Valhalla Game Studios and is denied a look at the game.



The third project from Dead or Alive creator Tomonobu Itagaki (and a group of former Team Ninja employees), Devil’s Third is still a largely unknown quantity. In fact, the only glimpse we’ve really had of it so far is the footage from the title’s explosive debut trailer, which features lots of wall-running, sword slicing, and bazooka blasts.


Unfortunately, it seems that we’ll have to wait for Itagaki and company to unveil Devil’s Third’s gameplay later this year, at the Tokyo Game Show.


10. Thi4F

While E3 did feature fourth entries in series starring thieving, sneaky miscreants (specifically Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time and Assassin’s Creed Revelations), neither of them gave us the triumphant return of stealth-gaming pioneer Garrett, whose next adventure was confirmed in early May by developer Eidos Montreal. While the announcement’s pre-E3 timing led our sister site CVG to speculate that a Thief 4 (or “Thi4f,” which we feel compelled to pronounce “Thii-fourf”) reveal was a certainty, EM came to the show with nothing more (or less) than a playable demo of Deus Ex: Human Revolution.

There’s been a lot of speculation about the game since the announcement, with fans wondering if the gameplay style, perspective and/or protagonist will undergo massive changes, or if it’ll be another adventure in the mold of 2004’s Deadly Shadows. Sadly, E3 didn’t hold any answers for us, although it’s likely that we’ll probably see something after Deus Ex: HR hits stores in late August.


The biggest news you missed from E3 2011
E3 happened so fast, some interesting news probably passed you by

 

 

The Top 7… E3 no-shows
The most noticeable absences from last year’s show (aren’t actually that different from this year’s)

Topics

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33 comments

  • Plan10FromOuterSpace - July 3, 2011 6:48 p.m.

    Its starting to feel like Half Life has been put on the back-burner by valve in favor of their newer titles like portal and left 4 dead, which is surprising considering its probably the most critically acclaimed first person shooter series of all time, surely now we've had sequels for both the previously mentioned titles it must be close...still if it takes them four years to make one episode I hate to think how long we'll be waiting for Half Life 3....
  • evergreen11 - June 27, 2011 7:52 a.m.

    @EuroAsianManOfDiscovery i was in that same boat until this article re-piqued my intrest in FF versus XIII and i went fishing around the internet for any new info. The funny thing was i found it really easily, but its weird because im the kinda guy who normally wouldnt miss something as big as that (I check like 5 game websites several times a day). I mean, i dont recall a single games/news outlet even mentioning it. Not just because its the first gameplay of FF versus XIII, but because it is honestly one of the best trailers i have ever seen. ps here is a link to the trailer http://www.gametrailers.com/video/japanese-gameplay-final-fantasy/709809
  • AlphaAGENT144 - June 26, 2011 1:32 p.m.

    Silly Gamesradar! We all know valve cant count to 3!
  • EwoksTasteLikeChicken - June 26, 2011 12:35 a.m.

    Yeah I was pretty bummed out that Rockstar didn't do ANYTHING
  • dkgshiz - June 25, 2011 10:43 p.m.

    Only game I cared about on this list was last guardian. Don't care about MGSR. Looks honestly nothing special.
  • RicePuddingUK - June 25, 2011 6:50 p.m.

    Am Only really bothered about Max Payne 3, Respawn/IW can smoke my pole.
  • pr0tostar - June 25, 2011 5:38 p.m.

    Wow, can't believe I missed that article. Thanks Mikel!
  • Craza - June 25, 2011 4:16 p.m.

    Hell, I didn't even KNOW there was an announcement for Thief 4. Definitely have to keep an eye out for that one!
  • NightCrawler_358 - June 25, 2011 3:17 p.m.

    I can't wait for all of these to come out, but I still have hope- I mean, Duke Nukem Forever finally came out! ...although it sucked really bad.
  • EuroAsianManOfDiscovery - June 25, 2011 2:36 p.m.

    So I guess no one saw that gameplay trailer that came out for Versus XIII earlier at January this year?
  • RedOutlive10 - June 25, 2011 2:28 p.m.

    Episode 3 is the next Duke Nukem Forever. Or maybe that's Beyond Good & Evil 2.
  • philipshaw - June 25, 2011 2:12 p.m.

    Good list, I think we will see The Last Guardian at TGS
  • mothbanquet - June 25, 2011 12:55 p.m.

    I get the feeling that Half Life has become something akin to a piece of half-finished fan fiction that the author can't be bothered wrapping up. The total lack of enthusiasm Valve shows for their best franchise (I like Portal but it'll always be a mini-game compared to the mammoth journeys of HL1/2) is more of a slap in the face than the absence of the game itself.
  • Tronto13 - June 25, 2011 8:32 a.m.

    i doubt half life 3 will ever come out, when have valve released a game with a 3 in it? Left 4 dead 2 came out within a year of 1 but no 3, we have seen no team fortress 3, half life is nowhere to be seen and i wouldn't be surprised if portal stayed where it is! I think they just have an aversion to the number 3.
  • quincytheodore - June 25, 2011 6 a.m.

    Versus is going for Vaporware award. I've heard rumors that it will actually on Wii U. This is looking like DNF (Oh, God, please say it isn't so). It's a bit tragic since XIII-2 only has one, or one and half year dev cycle. Maybe they want to use the hype train or already familiar with the engine, but it's been more than five years since Versus was announced and we don't even have hands-on or any preview whatsoever, except for that trailer.
  • staplersexits - June 25, 2011 3:16 a.m.

    The Thi4f logo makes me thing "thee-aff"
  • Yeager1122 - June 25, 2011 3:08 a.m.

    Completley agree with the two people who said Borderlands 2 and Kingdom Hearts 3 and i definteley want Half Life already the problem with waiting so long with these games is the fans of them eventually stop caring and lose intrest except for the most hardcore ones of course.
  • aman123 - June 25, 2011 3:04 a.m.

    Kingdom Hearts 3 for the love of God.
  • conn30r - June 25, 2011 2:54 a.m.

    I think that we will all know some more about Bungie's new project, because on Bungie day they said they would announce something about Aerospace. I can't wait!
  • pr0tostar - June 25, 2011 2:22 a.m.

    No Devil May Cry reboot? Or did I dream that one up?

Showing 1-20 of 33 comments

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