Raccoon City is not your standard Resident Evil and is absolutely your standard first person shooter. That isn't to say, however, that it isn't a fun game. The demo being shown was only one four player level, but I was left really impressed.
Raccoon City is probably the game my opinion has changed most about after playing it at PAX. You play as an elite Umbrella Corp squad sent in to cover up the Raccoon City incident of RE1 and 2 and you do this by shooting a whole shitload of zombies. The gameplay itself is mostly standard SOCOM-esque gunfighting with a slight focus on melee combat. There is also a zombie mechanic where human team members can be bitten and eventually recruited to the ways of a zombie, which added a really interesting dynamic to the game. Raccoon City is probably the biggest surprised-it's-really-good game of PAX for me.
On the other side of the spectrum is Dead Island. While I liked the focus on RPG elements in what is basically a first person Dead Rising, the controls were just horrible. You turned slow, weapons didn't feel right, everything was clunky, you'd miss zombies... It just felt messy. And unfortunately, the game comes out in a few weeks.
It may be a symptom of not having time to adjust, but the movement stuff was almost bad enough to make me walk away before the five minute demo was over. Also all that motion blur almost made me sick. (Maybe they should stop demoing FPS games with anything other than KB+M. -Ed)
Hey guys Fez is real! I played it and can vouch that it is some kind of game that exists! Suck it, Brian! (I am the original hipster of Fez. -Ed) For those that don't know or who weren't born yet when it was announced Fez is a 2D 3D platformer where you can rotate the camera around to change the world. The concept is simple and mindfucky and leads to some really interesting ideas.
Nothing in the approximately 20 minute demo really gave me that big of a challenge, but the seeds are there for Fez to end up being really devilish with its design. An interesting touch to the strictly 2D graphics style is the ability to go into first person and get a Minecraft-y look at your surroundings. Also, great music and atmosphere! A simply beautiful game.
I was really shocked to see Lollipop Chainsaw at PAX since it was only announced a scant few weeks ago. Much less have it be playable at PAX.
Lollipop Chainsaw struck me as a mix of Oneechanbara and Bayonetta, with No More Hero's sense of hip and cool thrown in for good measure. Basic attacks combos can be mashed out, and the mix of cheerleading and chainsaw-murdering that results from them is an absolute treat to watch.
The voice acting was nothing to write home about, but the script, visuals, and effects were simply amazing. The demo I played had me fighting a hipster rocker zombie who used the power of lyrics like "FUCKING BITCH" to hurt me. I mean this in a litteral sense, the words physically came out of him and flew at me, and I had to dodge them. It was amazing.
The game is also as much of a gore-fest as you would expect from a SUDA51 joint. The team at the booth was very apologetics about how rough the game looks and plays, but I already think Lollipop Chainsaw could end up being one of the best games of 2012. It's certainly a contender for my favorite game of PAX11.