Exploring worlds, solving puzzles, "buffing" and "levelling up" – here are the most exciting roleplaying and adventure games from this year's E3...
Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception (PS3)
One of the PS3's flagship titles, Uncharted 3 looks every bit as beautiful as its predecessor. A gameplay demo showed Nathan Drake exploring a cruise ship, then triggering its sinking and attempting to escape as the boat flipped 90 degrees. Looks very much like the previous games in terms of the visuals and gameplay, but that's hardly a bad thing, is it?
Mass Effect 3 (Xbox 360)
The third (and reportedly final) part EA's space opera behemoth has been given a new release date (March 6th 2012) and, naturally, Kinect controls. So the conversation system gives you the option of speaking the responses instead of selecting them with your controller. Oh, and there's also the usual shenanigans concerning worlds being destroyed and having the choice between acting like a nice guy or a sneering, untrustworthy bully.
Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (PS3/Xbox 360/PC)
If it's big you want, look no further. The beautiful Skyrim has a huge fantasy world to explore, something like 300 hours of "questing" available and, well, it has dragons – huge dragons flying through the air, breathing fire and generally messing stuff up. Out on 11/11/2011, this could be the game to keep you occupied during the frozen winter months.
Fable: The Journey (Xbox 360)
Fable goes Kinect crazy with this newly-revealed game. The short live demo showed off the ability to drive a horse-drawn wagon by pulling virtual reins, then using gestures to blast a bunch of goblins (or something) with various spells. It seemed to be on rails, disappointingly. 2012 release date.
Kinect Star Wars (Xbox 360)
Every man wants to pretend to wield a lightsabre and lift up heavy objects using the Force. Well, this game lets you do all that and more – the live demo had a Jedi taking on a bunch of droids (and eventually two Sith) in Cloud City. As with Fable, it looked a bit too "on rails" for our liking, lacking the sort of fluidity we'd want.
Tomb Raider (PS3/Xbox 360/PC)
The live demo of this Tomb Raider "reboot" features a young Lara Croft running, jumping and climbing around some danger-filled caves. She can use her "survival instincts" now – a mode that highlights interactive parts of the level to get around those "what the hell do I do now?" moments. The game is gorgeous, too, giving Uncharted 3 a run for its money in the visual stakes.
Super Mario (3DS)
It's a Mario game! It's brand new! It's on the 3DS! And it's out before the end of the year! Nuff said.
Luigi's Mansion 2 (3DS)
Mario's little brother is also coming to the 3DS in an entirely new ghost-bustin' Luigi's Mansion title featuring "several new mansions" for the vacuum-wielding plumber to explore.