The Bonkurasu Brigade

Top 5 picks at Gamestart Asia’s press conference

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Image by Gamestart Asia

It is about 3 more weeks to the first proper game-centred convention in Singapore, and earlier today was the event’s second wave of announcements. But this time, the organisers invited the press and bloggers to St Games at Bugis+. So what can we expect at Gamestart? Here’s our top five highlights that were announced earlier today.

1. Sony Computer Entertainment (HK) will be a major exhibitor
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Image by Gamestart Asia

Sony’s presence will be pretty strong at Gamestart 2014. For one, occupying 250 square metres of space within the the Suntec Convention Hall is a big deal. Games such as Bloodborne, The Order 1886, Until Dawn and Guilty Gear Xrd will have hands-on previews for con-goers to try out.

2. Tons of hands-on game previews for you to try
What’s a gaming convention without games for you to try? Here’s the list of games that you will be able to try out:

1. Bloodborne
2. Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
3. Danganronpa 2: goodbye Despair
4. Diablo® III: Reaper of Souls™ – Ultimate Evil Edition™
5. DRIVECLUB™
6. Dragon Ball Xenoverse
7. EVOLVE
8. Far Cry 4
9. Final Fantasy Type-0 HD
10. FIFA 15
11. Freedom Wars™
12. Guilty Gear Xrd –SIGN-
13. God Eater 2
14. Godzilla
15. Hatsune Miku – Project DIVA F 2nd
16. Hearthstone®: Heroes of Warcraft™
17. Just Dance 2015
18. Kingdom Hearts 2.5 HD Remix
19. LittleBigPlanet™ 3
20. LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham
21. Minecraft
22. Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor
23. NBA 2K15
24. Project CARS
25. Resident Evil Revelations 2
26. Sleeping Dogs HD
27. Tales of Hearts R
28. The Evil Within™
29. The Last of Us Remastered
30. THE LEGEND OF HEROES SEN NO KISEKI I
31. The Order 1886
32. Until Dawn
33. Ultra Street Fighter 4
34. Warriors Orochi 3: Ultimate
35. World of Warcraft®: Warlords of Draenor
36. Winning Eleven 2015
37. WWE 2K15

Granted that some of the games like Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor and The Evil Within™ would have been released before the event, there are other noteworthy games that you can only try at Gamestart – or at least in Singapore – without being at Tokyo Game Show last month. Games such as The Order 1886, Resident Evil Revelations 2 and Dragon Ball Xenoverse are some of the games I’m dying to try out.

The press conference already have some game try-outs and previews for the press to try. I played a short portion of Until Dawn – Developer Supermassive Games definitely took some gameplay mechanics and visual elements from Heavy Rain and Beyond 2 Souls, not to mention the mood feels like something between Clocktower and Nightmare on Elm Street. Since it was only a demo, the visuals were decent, but not astounding, as with the 30FPS frame cap. I noticed considerable stutter and frame lag during the demo.

Bandai Namco also flexed its presence at Gamestart with Project Cars. I gave the game preview a miss as I wasn’t too keen on racing games. However, the visuals and style is reminiscent of Sony’s own Gran Turismo 5.

The best looking game of the lot shown today has got to be The Order 1886. I didn’t have a chance to try out the game, though I must say that visually, it has a cinematic direction not too different from The Last of Us.

3. Support for both local and global gaming content
Local game developers and studios will be holding panels for the first time at a convention, sharing their thoughts and advice on what it takes to join the gaming industry in Singapore. Here’s an excerpt from the press release:

“Exhibitors include Boomzap Entertainment and Witching Hour Studios who will be showcasing their games. Witching Hour is well-known for their Ravenmark series and their latest title, Romans in my Carpet – both of which have both received great reviews locally and overseas. Inzen Studio and Liongeeks Studios will also be showcasing their work, as well as homegrown artists Kinetiquettes, who will showcase their crafted licensed Capcom figurines, and conduct a live sculpting demo at their booth over the two days.

Individuals considering a career in gaming should catch the ‘Joining the Games Industry in Singapore’ panel, which will be led by Ian Gregory, Co-Founder and Creative Director of Witching Hour Studios.”

Additionally, Masaaki Yamagiwa and Junichi Yoshizawa, producers for the games Bloodborne and Freedom Wars respectively, will fly in specially to meet fans and speak about their games on stage with the involvement of Sony Computer Entertainment Hong Kong.

4. Local eSports support

Back in the late 90s and early 2000s, what would be considered eSports were tournaments like Counterstrike and Quake 3 Arena are now reduced to MOBA games – and of course, fighting games.

Excerpt from press release as follows:

“The tournament finals for Naruto, Gundam Extreme VS FullBurst, Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure and Soul Calibur will be held at GameStart, with the qualifiers being held over the two weeks leading up to the event.

Organisers Namco Bandai Games will also be showcasing a range of their hottest games including Tales of Hearts R, God Eater 2 Rage Burst, Godzilla and Project CARS.

Sword Art Online fans can expect an appearance by Yousuke Futami, one of the producers of the Sword Art Online game, who will be making an exciting announcement at the show regarding the franchise.”

5. Goodies and promotions
sonypromo
SCEHK released some early bird PS4 purchase specials, namely:
1. First 3 (three) customers will receive a Sony Xperia Z3 as well as a three-year Playstation Plus membership and T-shirt
2. First 10 (ten) customers each day will get a uniquely designed Toro Hard Disk cover and a Playstation T-shirt (10 pieces each for 25 & 26 October 2014)
3. First 50 (fifty) customers each day will also receive a free Playstation T-shirt
*(I believe the T-shirts giveaway don’t stack with each other, ie if you are among the first three customers to purchase a PS4, you won’t get three Playstation T-shirts)

offer

Additionally, SCEHK will be offering a trade-in program as well as premium giveaways for Playstation Plus members and druing game hands-on.

So how does this trade-in program work?
Only the following consoles are applicable for the SGD$100 trade-in:
Playstation, PS One, Playstation 2, Playstation 3, Sega Saturn, Dreamcast, Xbox, Xbox 360, Nintendo 64, Gamecube, Wii, Wii U

To further sweeten the deal, customers who purchase either a PS4 or a PS VITA will have the option to purchase any of the items in the table below for SGD$10. Limited quantities are available each day.
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Sony will also be giving away special premiums for customers who try out the following games:
– Bloodborne (T-shirt)
– DRIVECLUB (Non-woven bag)
– Freedom Wars (Screen Cleaner)
– The Evil Within (Ice pack)

Indeed, it is a good time to join the Playstation family at Gamestart 2014.

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gamestart
To make your trip more memorable, you can purchase GameStart’s limited edition T-shirts on the website as well as at the event itself. GameStart will be held on October 25th & 26th 2014 at Suntec City Convention Centre Hall 403. Tickets are priced at SGD$8.50 for a one-day pass and SGD$15 for a two-day pass.
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What are your thoughts on Gamestart thus far? Will you be going to GameStart this year? Which games in the list (or not) do you wish to see at GameStart? Let us know!

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