Inside Activision’s Biggest Hits at E3

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Besides managing to embarrass ourselves on plastic skateboards while strolling through Activision’s thumping E3 booth (courtesy of DJ Shadow on a set of turntables), we also had a chance to check out a few more of the most exciting upcoming titles in person.

Blur, which comes from Project Gotham Racing developers Bizarre Creations, might be best described as the offspring of one of those games mated with Mario Kart. No cartoony bobbleheads or turtle-shooting here, but the cars steer with an unnatural, whiplash-inducing quickness, soak up more damage than an Abrams tank could handle, and pick up power-ups like missiles and boosts along the way. All told, it looks like a blast, though, and we like how Bizarre has gone out of its way to avoid embarrassing style cut scenes (Need for Speed Underground, we’re looking in your direction), and instead delivers storyline through a clever messaging system after races.

The closest game at Activision’s booth to completion – Prototype – played as smoothly as its state of development would suggest. The blood-soaked thrasher game is quick to drop you into a panic-stricken and zombie-ridden version of Manhattan, but you quickly learn how to cut a man in half with your mutant sword hand, send massive claws spiking out the earth to dispatch entire cars, and shoot the hell out of everything that moves. In short, it’s a blood bath, and a bloody fun one at that. While slightly over the top, the main character’s supernatural powers lend this game a sense of  freedom (like the ability to run up walls straight to the top of skyscrapers) that’s sorely missing from other, more linear brawlers.