From the long-awaited, deeper look at Tom Clancy’s The Division to the return of the heralded Uncharted series, gamers received an enticing glimpse of what’s to come on Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo’s flagship consoles at E3 2014. However, not all titles showcased gameplay, often leaving their lasting impressions in the form of debut cinematic trailers. For instance, who doesn’t remember Ken Levine showing off Bioshock Infinite during the 2010 E3 conference? Simply put, a solid trailer builds or destroys a game’s immediate reputation among its harshest critics — the gamers themselves. We’ve compiled a list, in no particular order, of the 10 trailers that left us wanting more the moment the video ticked to 0:00.
Destiny offers new beginnings
The studio behind the massive hit Halo returns with another futuristic shooter in Destiny. Although Bungie touted the forthcoming game for some time, the New Beginning’s trailer shown during Sony’s press conference shed a whole lot more light on this massively multiplayer role-playing game. Fans of the Halo series may recognize Destiny’s similarities, though its open-world style of play and RPG elements give it a unique taste more akin to the Borderlands series than the company’s previous offering. Bungie’s Destiny may well revolutionize the shooter genre akin to what Halo did some 13 years ago. Our hands-on impressions left us longing to explore more, but thankfully, the beta arrives on the PS4 July 17. An official release date is also slated for Sept. 9, 2014, on current and next-gen systems.
Tom Clancy’s The Division gameplay demo takes you underground
The recently-showcased cinematic trailer for Tom Clancy’s The Division initially impressed audiences with its fast-forward visualization of a deteriorating New York City. Its deeper gameplay trailer though, is where The Division truly shined at E3. The trailer opens with two players making their way through a rundown version of NYC’s subway system and highlights many of the game’s interesting features. The Division uses a unique map system which creates a 3D model of your surroundings for a quick look at your location and where you need to go. As you continue to venture street side from the subway tunnels, it’s clear the graphical output and depth of Ubisoft’s Snowdrop engine is incredible. Once outside, an intense shootout highlighting different class loadouts, weapons, and accessories ensues. If the game is anywhere near as impressive as the gameplay trailer when it debuts in 2015 on next-gen systems, then the Tom Clancy franchise has yet another winner.
Inside trailer paints a beautiful, bleak picture
It appears Limbo’s 2010 success isn’t a one-hit wonder for indie developer Playdead. Praised for its engrossing style of play and haunting visuals, Limbo took players on an incredible journey through the depths of Hell. Its spiritual sequel, Inside, looks to do much of the same while building upon the foundation that made the first game such a joy to play. As shown during Microsoft’s press event, the title brings back the simple platforming elements introduced in Playdead’s first game, along with the difficult puzzle dynamics and unique visual flare. The trailer alone sets a terrifying stage for Inside, one that appears to be one heck of a frightening ride. Inside is currently scheduled for 2015 release.
No Man’s Sky’s gameplay demo shoots for the stars (and beyond)
Perhaps one of the more ambitious titles unveiled at the 2014 E3 conference, the Hello Games-developed No Man’s Sky aims to let gamers explore the contiguous universe. The trailer shows off the massive open-world scope of No Man’s Sky, which the developers call a “game without limits,” providing a stunning glimpse of what the game’s massive universe has in store for gamers. From discovering new species of interplanetary dinosaurs to hopping in a spaceship and jetting to foreign planets in distant galaxies, the No Man’s Sky gameplay trailer is something to behold. The game will still debut on the PS4 at an undisclosed date, despite the studio’s building flooding earlier this year.
Rainbow Six: Siege gameplay demo reimagines the shooter
The Rainbow Six franchise will bring tactical shooting to next-gen consoles with its latest entry, Rainbow Six: Siege. This phenomenal, six-and-a-half-minute gameplay trailer shows off Siege’s commitment to multiplayer and impeccable attention to detail. Watching the way the game’s Rainbow team plots and executes its plan to save a hostage is both thrilling and vastly different than most titles within the field, but given Rainbow Six games have always boasted life-like realism, it’s no surprising Siege takes realism one step further in its demo. The next installment of the franchise will feature fully destructible environments and debut sometime in 2015, so developer Ubisoft has plenty of time to work out the few kinks we experienced first hand at E3.
Next page: Five more of our favorite trailers from E3 2014.