The Prettiest Pretties of E3 2012

June 10, 2012

E3 2012 is over, but the articles will keep trickling out for a bit longer; still a lot to cover from the past week!

Like, for instance, the tech demos and graphical showpieces that blew more than a few skirts up behind closed doors. The next generation of particle effects and dynamic shaders us upon us, and three specific demos have taken position as the vanguards of future “ooh’s” and “ahh’s”.

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Star Wars 1313 – First Gameplay Reveal

The least polished demonstration of next-gen capabilities was Lucasarts’ Star Wars 1313, but since this is actually being demonstrated for an actual, upcoming game title, that hardly counts against it. These first few moments of the game were shown off for the first time on GTTV the Thursday before E3, and they have a definite, undeniable Uncharted feel to them. Apparently this is running off of Unreal Engine 3, but who knows what sorcery is at work behind the curtain. Having Uncle George’s endless caverns of money to cull from, along with the immediate assistance of ILM’s best and brightest minds, certainly gives this project an advantage. Watch Brad from Giant Bomb interview the game’s creative director to learn a bit more.

Potential use:  A return to original-trilogy detail over prequel trilogy polish and shine for future Star Wars titles.

Probably more realistic, eventual use:  Lightsabers. Lightsabers fucking everywhere.


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Square Enix’s Luminous Engine – “Agni’s Philosophy”

Square-Enix, being Square-Enix, was not content to simply demonstrate their new graphical capabilities through a simple tech demo. Instead, they concocted a full animated short with their typical flourish. They even included a poll for Japanese fans to vote on whether or not they might like a game that further explores this world and these characters. Read this interview with Yoichi Wada to learn a bit more.

Potential use:  Ushering in a new era of realism-driven JRPG’s.

Probably more realistic, eventual use:  Sparkles everywhere alongside the most feathered hair you have ever seen in your entire life.


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Unreal Engine 4 – Elemental Demo

If this truly is an actual, realtime, in-game asset tech demo, then holy shit. Since the third iteration of this engine is already rather popular with a number of developers, the idea of playing a new Batman, Bioshock or, hell, even Star Wars 1313 with this tech pulling the strings is definitely appealing. To learn how these fucking wizards are pulling this off, read Eurogamer’s piece on the tech behind the visuals and then watch the demo again, because oooh.

Potential use:  Snow will be snowier. Lava will be lava-ier. Gears will be war-ier than ever before.

Probably more realistic, eventual use:  Explore the middle east amid the brownest browns to ever brown a brown.


So? How about you guys? Which demos, showpieces, and stood out the most for you JKPeers among all of last’s week’s livestreams and youtube uploads?

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7 comments on “The Prettiest Pretties of E3 2012

  1. I am actually quite interested in this incarnation of Star Wars, because Uncharted, and I forget where, but during an interview or podcast from somewhere, it was said that specifically Jedi and the Force will not be making appearances, in this game at least. Take that with a grain of salt I suppose, but for at least one game it sounds like there will be some respite from those damndable lazer-blades


    • Patrick Jun 10, 2012

      they said that on the Giant bombcast but that doesn’t mean Lucasarts wont go full retard and just throw them in just because Star wars =Jedi and only jedi. (durrrrr) It would really be in their best interest to give the whole Jedi mythos from the series a wide birth for a while since the past decade from them has been that nonstop.


  2. I like that people were talking about these tech demos in direct comparisons, because to even begin to do that, you have to throw all practicality out the window. Here’s the reality of the situation: The Unreal demo is the winner, because every game that will be worth playing for the next five-plus years is going to be on it. Whether or not Square’s engine is prettier or not is irrelevant, because it will be host to one (1) JRPG that misses the point and does nothing new, all while taking five years to make.


  3. not a star wars fan, but am really interested in the game, as it looks like it has been worked on for some time and it shows, but what I don’t like is the square enix engine, since it’s a great looking animation, with way to much bling, woosh, sparkles, but the healing soda idea, I was impressed how they presented it…hats off.
    Now the unreal engine is like last years or last 2 years demo, where it is an animation and not gameplay and with character models that smooth, lights….5 years and we will get there with the cpu and gpu power, but for now, it’s just like 3dmark, but not as good imo


  4. Patrick Jun 10, 2012

    Whenever I see a new tech demo it reminds me of 2001, we all though FF:Spirits within was going to be the greatest thing and it turned into the shiniest Turd that Square-Enix could plop out. Because tech demos ALWAYS show how crisp and a clear cutscene can be or how many extra polys of particles you can stuff infront of the camera.


  5. Nice list, but Watch Dogs was hands down the best looking game at E3. It should have been on here too.


    • that’s true, it’s probably about as refined a game as Star Wars 1313 currently


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