E3 has not started just yet but EA are kicking things off with their three hour stream with each section devoted to each game. We shall update this page as the stream goes on. EA is kicking things off with arguably the star of the show…

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Fallen Order takes place after the events of Episode 3 and is a third person single player action adventure made by Respawn Entertainment. They showed off fifteen minutes worth of gameplay.

The game is being shown on a Xbox One.

The level they showed off takes place on Kashyyyk, homeworld of the Wookies. The mission was to help free the Wookies who were taken prisoner by the Stormtroopers.

Traversing involves some free running elements including running across walls and swinging on vines to make dramatic entrances. You have a little adorable droid who hangs onto your back the entire time which can be used to open certain doors. He’s called BD-1 and he seems to have a Clank-esque role in the game but could be a nice mascot for the game – it is definitely cute enough to endear him to players.

Therefore it is no surprise that there are some platforming elements to the game, including climbing Uncharted style up certain buildings and surfaces. Also at one point there was a spinning platform and the Jedi uses his powers to stop it’s motion allowing easier traversal.

The main character has force powers such as the force push as well as a lightsaber as to be expected. Basic enemies go down quite easily but they showed off a harder enemy which required some more strategy to defeat. There was even a point where the main character did a quadruple somersault before slicing a stormtrooper with the lightsaber, a trademark Jedi move. You can throw the lightsaber and it will come right back at you.

Another section had the Jedi fight giant bugs that were like spiders with giant sacs on their back that would shoot stick fluid at you to trap you. Lovely.

The Jedi can also use some of his powers to relive some of the thoughts of dead enemies to help show him the way to progress.

You can earn skill points but a skill tree was not shown but will involve increasing your force powers. After the demo they re-showed how the force powers can link up – the Jedi force stopped a blaster charge, then force pushed an enemy into it which admittedly was really cool.

There is a health bar that only recharges through the use of a consumable item. The gameplay demo ended with the Jedi attempting to rescue a Wookie only to be engaged by a giant droid followed by a short montage and then the title popped up.

Fallen Order is very much a Respawn game and there are elements players of Titanfall will recognise. The gameplay looks like it could be very fun, fairly fluid that really looks like it is aiming to give the player one of the best experiences of being a Jedi as possible. Definitely looking forward to seeing more of this one in the near future.

Apex Legends

Respawn is back with details about Season 2 of their battle royale surprise hit Apex Legend. Starting July 2 and it will be called Battle Charge.

There is a new weapon – the L-Star assault rifle. It will only be available in care packages and it is very powerful. It has explosive elements. Also some of the weaker weapons will be buffed to make them more usable.

They admit that they dropped the ball a little on the Battle Pass for season one but they say they have learned from that in order to give players what they want offering a challenge based system that will include more skins, crafting materials and new content types.

They showed off some of the skins including one that turns an assault rifle into a bad ass rhino and shark guns. Sadly they do not shoot sharks at people which is sad but I am sure it is the next step.

Apex Legends will also get a ranked mode which will have six tiers from Bronze to Apex Predator, with matchmaking taking ranks into account to make sure you’re fighting against people of similar tiers.

A new legend was announced – Wattson. There was a nice animated intro for her that involved a lot of machines starting up while a French man talks about the new character, his daughter. It was nice.

Wattson is a scientist/engineer who grew up in the arena. Respawn mentioned that they are looking to build the lore of Apex Legends a bit more, starting with this new characters.

Wattson seems to be a defensive related character and she can create fences to help defend against gunfire. You can build a fence with up to twelve nodes . There is a lot of freedom where they can place these fences and it could lead to some decent defensive play. Her ultimate is a pylon will charge her fence skills if she is near it as well as shooting enemies.

They also teased a big thing happening in-game from the start of Season 2…

While I am not big into Apex Legends, Blake certainly is and I look forward to seeing what she thinks of all the new stuff. It looks like they are now ready to try and take Apex Legends further.

Battlefield V

The next segment is all about DICE’s Battlefield V, focussing on their Chapter 4.

Battlefield V’s first new map is Marita, taking place in Greece on the Albania border. Taking place in a small mountain village, full of little adorable houses and it would be a lovely place to live if it wasn’t for all the war that was happening.

Second map is Al Sudan, a Northern African map, taking place on a desert based map. It’s a huge open map that seems designed for vehicular based mayhem. They are selling it as a classic Battlefield style map with a lot of freedom for strategy and different play styles.

More maps will come that will offer smaller tighter maps for more close-combat that seems to include a nice scenic French village on the water.

They have increased the max rank from 50 all the way to 500. This is to help players who ranked up way too quickly to carry on earning ranks as well as competing with similarly skilled and/or experienced players.

The last map showed was Operation: Underground – a map that takes place in an underground train station where you can shoot enemies in a train cart, a street level and caves. It looks like an interesting addition compared to the big sprawling maps announced before. It should be available around October.

They also showed off some of Chapter 5,  out in the fall which starts with a soldier getting hit in the face with the butt of a gun. That probably hurt. This one seems to focus on USA and Japan’s entry into WWII and one of the maps include the US invasion of Japan by the Pacific Sea. This is another time they keep saying it is like classic Battlefields, which contained maps centred around the Pacific.

FIFA 20

The FIFA segment started with the trailer that dropped earlier today announcing FIFA Volta, the Street inspired mode that is coming to the next iteration of the long running football series. They show a little video about street football featuring Rio Ferdinand and Chelcee Grimes.

Volta seems to take place in a hard court surrounded by a cage which you can use to rebound the ball off of as well as doing tricks to get past your opponents. You can use real players in this mode so you can play dream match-ups such as Barcelona vs Aberdeen, Liverpool vs Aberdeen or Accrington Stanley vs Aberdeen but in a street environment. It likely will not be as OTT as the FIFA Street games but it could be a fun addition to FIFA.

Female football players will be available in Volta and there is a wide variety of customisation in terms of clothing and appearance – really driving home the anyone can play element of street football.

After this they announced more gameplay changes for FIFA 20 including what they call Footballing Intelligence. For on the ball they want to enhance one on one elements and will try to make the player more engaged in these moments, with more control to create more scoring challenges – more spaced out teammates for better passing opportunities. They are also adding more control to the finishing elements of FIFA to give players a better experience when it comes to shooting, especially when one on one with the goalkeeper.

Dribbling and tacking will also be given the controlled treatment, giving players a better chance to use their own skills and decision making when attempting these skills. Set pieces are also being improved with more precise choices.

The ball has been given a new physics system so should be more realistic especially when it bounces, curves etc. More importance will be placed on players attributes and more skills are being added for FIFA 20.

The release date is 27th September, though people with EA Access can play eight days early on the 19th. EA Access is also coming to PS4 soon.

Personally, I am hoping Volta is part of the demo because that is the most interesting thing there for me as someone who does not buy FIFA every year. Other than Volta it seems like this year is mainly about tweaking last years game rather than an overhaul.

Madden 20

Madden will introduce a career mode where you create a quarterback and take him through his career from the college to the Superbowl. This will include little goals to accomplish during games to improve your players rating.

There will be new playbooks and formations introduced to Madden 20 that will be updated during the season with plays from the NFL teams. New Ultimate mode missions will be added and ‘X-Factor Abilities’ will give certain players trademark skills.

As someone with only a passing interest in American Football, and has only ever watched other people play Madden, it is hard to really notice anything super different except for the career mode which they did not show a whole lot of.

There is a Closed Beta happening on June 14th ahead of its August 2nd release.

 

The Sims 4

Now The Sims, I know about. I have played The Sims games since I was a child. I still am a child I just happen to be a 27-year old child.

The big news right out of the gate is that next expansion for The Sims 4 has been announced as Island Living – which is exactly what it sounds like. You can now live on an island and do islandy things like hang out on the beach, clean up a messy beach and be a mermaid. SOLD. I’ve always wanted to be a mermaid.

A lot of island clothing that is bright and colourful. They can walk right into the sea, a mood I can relate with, but not to drown their sorrows but to hang out with their Sims buddies. There are jet skis and little boats too.

There is an active volcano on the island that can erupt and shoot out big lava rocks when it gets angry. You can have a dolphin pal and I’m sorry but that needs to be in more games. Dolphins are great. There are some tropical fish, coral reefs etc but YOU CAN PLAY WITH A DOLPHIN.

You can sunbathe and get a tan (or a sunburn if you’re not careful), sand castle building and just relax…next to a volcano.

One of the new careers is as a conversationalist and that will involve keeping the island, beaches and seas clean. This can lead to the island changing as better care for the island leads to a better ecosystem.  You can also earn money through fishing, life guarding or as a diving instructor.

The island itself has its own little history and traditions you can take part in. There are also elementals on the island that will pop up if the island is well taken care of (or if its not).

So you can create mermaids with different colours of tails and fins and they can look like normal sims but also have some unique appearance options as well as some powers that they did not go into details about.

As far as the architecture goes it is very much a Polynesian themed packs so you can make the beach cabin of your dreams from the traditional ones to more modern island architecture.

They also announced a partnership with ‘It Gets Better’ that will include more LGBT+ content into the game including general neutral bathrooms, Pride themed clothing which will start to roll out the June 18th on the Sims 4 and later on for the mobile game.

The next Stuff Pack is in partnership with fashion brand Moschino – who partnered with Sims to produce real life items based on the games – and will include a career as a freelance fashion photographer which seems fitting.

And then they announced the next Game Pack will be called the Realm of Magic, coming this fall. They will announce more later but the name alone gives a clue on what could be contained within it.

I have not bought a single expansion for The Sims 4 and I feel like I’m far too behind now to start but the Island pack looks cool and hopefully hardcore Sims fans will enjoy that when it comes out.

And that’s a wrap on EA Play. Definitely keeping an eye out on more details about Fallen Order which has already been announced as part of Microsoft’s conference tomorrow. It’s been three hours of watching this stream while typing while remembering to drink a little bit of water every now and then. We will see you tomorrow with more E3 coverage with Microsoft, Bethesda and Devolver Digital, so we’ll see you then!

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