EA Takes A Leap of Faith Into the Sandbox Genre!

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“They aspire to match my magnificence! Let them try!,” the ghost of the notorious debonair assassin Ezio Auditore scoffs breaking into hysterical laughter.

ezio_auditore_da_firenze_brotherhood
Careful Ezio, too much ego leads to a hero’s downfall.

He laughs for an eternity it seems, then abruptly pulls his beaked hood over his finely sculpted face. A smirk softens his now darkly stoic appearance as he remarks, “Meglio essere felici in questa vita che aspirare a esserlo nella prossima.”

Ezio was no stranger to living his one extraordinary life to the fullest and EA takes our favorite fictional friend’s savant advice to heart. The third top video game publisher in the world is certainly not waiting for another life to acquire ultimate happiness. EA,  a.k.a  Electronic Arts are well recognized for fun light games such as The Sims franchise and Plants Vs. Zombies and sports game franchises Need for Speed and Fifa. EA isn’t content having best-selling game franchises to their name! The 4.5 million company plans to go head first into sandbox territory to create a game to match the likes of the Assassin’s Creed and GTA franchises.

 

plants vs zombies
‘Cuz for EA, disco dancing zombies, cute smiling sunflowers, and pea-shooters are just not enough.

EA’s previous attempt Mercenaries and its sequel Mercenaries 2 were an experiment in open world games, but EA wants their new game to have a giant  impact. According to an IGN interview with executive vice president Patrick Soderlund, EA aims to deliver “something new to the gamers that maybe hasn’t been done before.”

Will this something new involve our cult heroine, Faith Connors? Yes! EA’s gamble on a budding Mirror’s Edge franchise may find Connors exploring the world rather than running straight to the finish line in Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst.

EA may be wanting to fly too far from their firmly established coop. Mirror’s Edge fans like PC Gamer’s Samuel Roberts were underwhelmed by EA’s open world offered in the demo for Catalyst. In his article, Roberts expressed how the open world felt “boxed up.” Roberts also expressed disappointment in the game’s map. Roberts claims that the map eluded to a “huge open city” yet the demo didn’t detail how the open world would “feel to the player to travel from one world to another.”

 

faith vs ezio
Ezio you’ve got competition! Faith will battle foes and naysayers to win over fans of Ezio Auditore.

Unfortunately, the demo appears to only highlight EA’s ugly track record of releasing unfinished games.  Luckily, this isn’t the final version of the game and Catalyst isn’t their only focus. Chewbacca and friends will also be waiting to join the ranks of the much adored (and loathed) Ezio Auditore when the company publishes their newest Star Wars open world game. A release date for the new Star Wars saga has yet to be announced.

EA may have huge ambitions, but they also have the right people to help them get there. Earlier this year the company recruited the former lead writer for Naughty Dog’s Uncharted franchise, Amy Hennig. EA also acquired one of the masterminds behind the Assassin’s Creed series, Jade Raymond. Supported by the dream duo of Raymond and Hennig, EA hopes to become an out of the box sandbox publisher, but will Chewie and  Faith Connors help them achieve video gaming blockbuster gold?

 

hannig and raymond
EA’s dream duo Amy Hennig (left) and Jade Raymond (right) are the women who will make EA’s sandbox dream a reality.

We shall see.” Ezio’s ghost utters, the same smug smirk plastered across his face, as he leaps to reclaim his place in video game history.

eziol eaps to history
There he goes! Bye Ezio! Faith may steal your shine, but you will live on in video game heaven!

Ezio may think he’s the big shot now, but Faith is ready and willing to prove that like Lara Croft before her, heroines can conquer the video game world once again!
Faith Connors will sprint her way back onto our hearts when Mirrors Edge Catalyst hits the PS4, Xbox One and PC on February 23, 2016.

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Who is Nia Rosa? I am the queen of casual gal gaming on the east coast. My casual gaming life began with bopping mushrooms and hunting ducks. Soon I was getting crushed by fat chocobos, tomb raiding, watching plumbobs turn bright red and visiting virtual red light districts to solve fun puzzles. These days if I'm not studying I'm street fighting gangs of Japanese dudes with afros, finding and saving April Ryan and laughing at my sim's pixelated pain.