It’s back for the Paris Games Week. After years of cancellation due to COVID, it was feared like other physical video game (or other leisure) fairs that it would not survive this crossing of the desert. It is therefore with pleasure and a little concern that I went to this event, almost 15 years after my last visit…
Without wanting to give you a complete overview of the show and all that it offers, otherwise it would take pages, we can say that the 2022 edition was personally much better than I would have imagined. After a catastrophic car show, a Tokyo Games Show which was unanimously criticized, a E3 which smells of fir, the big publishers who boycotted almost all the appointments of the year around the world, it was not won.
Whether you are a fan of competitive games (beautiful e-sport competitions were organized on site with a great atmosphere), fans of PC games, console games, retrogaming, want to see publisher conferences (Microids which presented its future games on a giant screen for example), or just want to see some famous faces of Twitch Where YoutubeThere was something for everyone.
Let’s take a look at the SEGA stand:
So it was with undisguised pleasure that I went to the Sega stand without knowing what awaited me there. Quite large in size, without of course equaling the spaces of Xbox or Playstation, Sega only offered three playable games, but titles that had not yet been released, and that’s really a good surprise.
We could therefore try out Sonic Frontiers (PC version, playable with an Xbox controller), the latest Demons Slayers on Switch and Like A Dragon Ishin (playable on PS5). We also had the opportunity to participate in a reflex game to win Sega sunglasses, take a photo with Sonic, and finally participate in a contest at the Yakuza stand to win collector goodies by draw.
What a surprise when I arrived to see a huge queue to play Sonic Frontiers. While the game has been rather criticized since its last videos, seeing so many players eager to test it is encouraging. I myself put 1h15 before laying my hands on it, and when I left, there was more than 2 hours of waiting…
In all honesty, for the moment I was not thrilled by what I had been able to see on this title and it is therefore very cautious that I launched the demo. This one certainly takes place on the very first island of the game. Not very extensive, it serves mainly as a tutorial and shows us a little of what this Sonic is capable of.
Let’s start with the bad points. The demo begins with a scene where Sonic “wakes up” in this world and a voiceover (the villain) begins to tease the story a bit. From the first seconds, we tell ourselves that the game is of the technical level of the beginning of PS4, or that it was designed to run on Switch (which would not be funny, since it is the best-selling console in Japan and certainly Sega’s main target). The textures are dull, not very detailed, even messy. The grass is flat with a few clumps of grass, the rain that falls is quite ugly, in short, it’s not pretty pretty… The game starts and we quickly notice the ubiquitous popping of the game for all the aerial elements (bumpers, rails, etc… which really appear at the last moment). As much as the overall decor offers a good viewing distance, the rest pops to death. It’s a shame because it won’t help to give an idea of the “visitable” areas by looking into the distance.
Another negative point, the first enemies I faced are gray, or black, without charisma or nice design.
You’re going to tell me it’s a disaster, but in the end, I had fun there. In fact, as soon as we start to really play, we realize that the game is ultra fluid. It runs fast, or it moves smoothly. The speed effect is real when we are at Level 1 of the speed (out of 99). The fights are ultimately quite easy to master and to my surprise, I got into the game when it was really the aspect that put me off the videos.
We finally realize that the game has a big RPG part with stats: speed, defense, attack, rings that can go up to level 99 each, as well as a skill tree to unlock new skills. This aspect can be very nice if it is well exploited (too early to tell). The soundtrack was very successful on the end of the level that I also covered.
It is obviously not in ten minutes of play that I will be able to get an overall idea of the game, not having tested the levels in 2D, nor done any real exploration during my session, but sincerely, controller in hand, the game reassured me. Maybe I expected such a disappointment, that the good surprise took over. So much the better…
Like A Dragon: Ishin
Playable on PS5, I was able to test one of the two demos available. We could either choose a ten-minute demo with mostly cinematics to explain the story and the context, and little gameplay, or take the demo centered on the fights with the encounter of a boss. Of course I preferred to get into the actually playable demo.
I never played the original opus, and I haven’t done much Yakuza, so my opinion is very far from being objective.
What I can say is that visually it rather does the job. The textures are clean, the cutscenes really well done, the NPCs are beautiful, and the village I passed through was full of possibilities.
Real-time combat allowed you to switch between different forms of techniques, either saber, pistol, a mix of the two, or naked. You can trigger a whole bunch of combos or special moves, all of which seem very easy to me to master.
The only negative point, but I may not have understood how to do it, is that it was impossible to lock his opponent. Suddenly against the boss, I often got knocked out only because my character took a long time to turn around, the fault of the lack of lock. Maybe that was already the case in the original game.
The game made a really good impression on me and the players seemed quite happy with their game session, even if it attracted less crowds (30mn wait when I went there).
Finally, concerning the last game presented, I admit that I have not tested it (Demon Slayer). It’s a fighting game, so not my style, I don’t know the manga or the games in this saga in general. I can say, however, that obviously he attracted quite a crowd. Not as much as Sonic, but still.
And the rest of the living room?
Very quickly, I would tell you that apart from Nintendo, which only presented games already released on Switch or offered a contest on Mario Kart and Smash Bros.all other publishers presented games not available and in playable version !!!
In the lot, at Xbox you had Wo Long Fallen Dynasty, Planet of Lana, Pentinence, Lies of P. At the house of sony dozens of terminals to play Forspoken. Ubisoft presented Skull and Bones. We were also able to play the last street fighter. In short, heaps of novelties, coated with showcase games of each brand (Forza Horizon 5, Skyline 2, Mario and the Rabbids, call of dutyetc…).
To my great surprise there were no games terminals God of War Ragnarok, as it comes out in a few days. On the other hand, there was a conference of almost an hour on the game, led by Julien Chieze, Carole Quintaine and a journalist from JeuxVideo.com. All sponsored by Playstation, the sponsorship being well marked wholesale so that we do not magnify it.
Finally, we had booth MO5, where you may have met our friend Shenron. They have also gone all out this year with a beautiful space animated by a DJ, giant screens to play multiplayer Saturn Bomberman or Smash Bros. for example, lots of retro consoles where I could play a game of Outrun or Alien Vs Predator on Jaguar for example…
So much for this little (long) summary of this PGW. One day would not be enough to try everything as there were so many people for each new game. My favorite will be for Planet of Lana presented and playable on the Xbox stand, a 2D game à la Another World which promises to be simply sumptuous.