X15: Quick Thoughts

I spent a bit of time on other assorted games and demos throughout the course of X15 Canada:

Skylanders SuperChargers: The team showed off a racing game that mixed elements of modern Mario Kart and the underrated classic Diddy Kong Racing, adding in the mechanic of ducking underwater to avoid damage and snag submerged collectibles or entering water soaked acceleration rings. The character portal and Skylander figures weren’t active for the actual demo which is understandable for a mass volume experience, but I wanted to experience the specific figure & portal user elements such as any lighting or audio effects that could be new to the SuperChargers experience.

Rise of the Tomb Raider: An increased emphasis on the actual tombs is coming to the Xbox (limited time) exclusive as shown off by a hands-off demo. There appeared to be a significant increase of deforming environmental elements and particle effects as Lara dodged deadly traps through environments that bore a strong resemblance to the Uncharted series, which is likely intentional. The guided demo looked amazing, the year-long console exclusivity window and confirmed 1080p graphics at 30 frames per second should position Lara Croft as the main face of adventure games on the Xbox One.

Quantum Break: The pre-recorded video focused on the big push into transmedia for the Xbox One, showing off the various time based powers and combat sequences spliced with branching character decisions. The latter integrates a mix of in-game sequences and recorded segments that now feature Hollywood talent such as Shawn Ashmore, Dominic Monaghan, Aiden Gillen and an ominous sounding Lance Reddick in a series of tense confrontations. The time powers look spectacular but we didn’t get to see it running on an actual console to show off the frame rate or AI.

All in all, X15 was a great show and a complementary teaser for PAX Prime 2015 at the end of the month. We’ll have coverage every day from the show floor including coverage of upcoming games, discussion panels and much more!

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