This year’s E3 was pretty underwhelming as you can see from our reviews of Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, Ubisoft and EA. However, one thing that stood out was that it also gave us a glimpse of next-gen graphics and it’s as if these third-party publishers officially rang the bell signalling the start of next-gen. Nintendo Wii U will be released this year, and Sony and MS’ consoles will be probably released next year, but that didn’t stop people from speculating what these consoles will contain and based on these incredible tech demos shown by select publishers, we kinda know what to expect from them.
Square Enix, the publisher behind the legendary Final Fantasy series, showcased its new Luminous engine at E3 this year behind closed doors, and the tech demo that the public got to see was all in real-time and rendered using the engine. To prove that it is real-time, they also changed the values resulting in something that was pretty impressive. Do not mistake this for a Final Fantasy XV demo, because this is just something they created to showcase the particle system, high density models and so on. The demo titled Agni’s Philosophy was created by Visual Works with target hardware intended for next-gen, which means, it ran on a PC.
Epic Games gained a lot of goodwill this gen due to their versatile and cheap Unreal Engine 3, which not only many developers adopted but was highly regarded as being the best middleware available. Once Unreal Engine 4 was unveiled, the press and gamers were pretty enthusiastic to see what Epic Games was planning with their next-gen engine, and they released a tech demo to show exactly that. Apparently the demo was running on a GTX 680 and to run the engine at optimal, the next gen consoles need to be at least 1.5 TFLOPS. There is a scaled down version too, probably for the Wii U. The Unreal Engine was really popular at E3 with over 25 games utilizing it.
Ubisoft stole the show at E3 this year, mainly due to its new game – Watch Dogs. It was somewhat surprising seeing that at Ubisoft’s conference, because it took the world by storm and ended up trending on Twitter and was a major talking point after the conference. It’s going to be released for the PS3, Xbox 360 and PC, but the demo at E3 was running on a high-end PC, and was targeted at next-gen platforms. It looked spectacular and something never before seen in games this gen. Huge open-world packed game with detail isn’t something that can be easily accomplished, as you can see in the video below.
Lucas Arts came out of nowhere and showed a demo of Star Wars 1313, along with a bunch of information that you can check over here. It looked like Uncharted but with an incredible visual fidelity. The game was running on a high-end PC, and the game does not have any platforms yet, so it could be very well the first next-gen game to be announced. It’s a third-person action game built with Unreal Engine 3 as a base, and Lucas Arts has mentioned that the production values are quite high with, LucasArts, Industrial Light & Magic, Lucasfilm Animation Ltd. and Skywalker Sound all working on the game. Have a look at the video below and be prepared to be blown away.
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