EA are well known for a versatile armoury of games, from SSX snowboarding to NFS driving to Dragon Age monster whupping. This week however, all the attention is focused on their latest release, Battlefield 3. B3 charged to the top of this week’s charts, pushing past Batman: Arkham City and FIFA 12 with over 5 million copies sold in its first week, making it EA’s fastest selling game ever.

Patrick Soderlund, executive VP of the EA Games Label, has this to say about the release:

“It is extremely gratifying to deliver an entertainment experience that delights our fans, and to have the opportunity to introduce new people to the franchise. Already, we are seeing unprecedented play times and online activity which is very rewarding. This launch solidifies Battlefield as a leading entertainment brand.”

Although some servers reported problems regarding disturbed online play, EA state that they are looking into it and will have a solution in no time. Thus far, multiplayer gamers have performed 48 million revives, 73 million saviour kills and destroyed 67 million vehicles, which is incredible considering the game was only released on the 25th of October.

I expect Sian [Cubed Gamers] will have something to say about this monster of a game in the near future, so watch out for that, otherwise if you are considering buying it for the online experience, I would recommend it on the basis of the current stats, although some argue that the creators are still trying to produce something to rival the COD franchise. With a complex plot and often frustrating linear game-play, you could say that this game was designed for online compatibility – and that’s where the games of the future are inevitably heading. But you have to consider Modern Warfare’s success in 2007/08 onwards, and so the battle between the two franchises continues.

To briefly sum up the pros and cons, Gamespot UK have this to say:

The good

–       Deep and varied multiplayer competition

–       Awesome array of vehicles

–       Many gorgeous environments

–       Rewards teamwork handsomely

The bad

–       Campaign is disappointing and dull

–       Only six cooperative missions

–       No way to practice jet flight outside of multiplayer

So if you prefer to compete with friends online, this is debatably the game to put on your Christmas list; but for those of us who play more solitarily, the lack of offline content may be disappointing.

In other news, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has confirmed that the Wii U will be showcased at E3 next year. After a bad experience following the release of the 3DS, Iwata has decided to take this new console more carefully, but confirms that the Wii U will have a successful launch. The question that I, and indeed many other people will ask, is whether it will have anything on the original Wii? The knowledge thus far suggests that players will have to purchase a completely new console for the controller to be playable, which is an unpleasant prospect, considering it’s just a mesh up with the DS technology. Only reviews-to-come will tell.

Iwata also promises to have more consistent software launches and “new genres” for the troubled 3DS, so I guess he’s forgiven, except I have no idea what new genres could possibly be invented… My concern is whether Nintendo can afford to keep this promise up, after having posted a net loss of ¥70 billion (£551 million / $894 million) in the half-year ending this September.

We shall see at E3 2012 whether Nintendo can surprise us, and if I happen to win the lottery in the meantime, I’ll be there to witness it myself and bring all the news back firsthand.


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