The Complete E3 Recap
It took 5 days. 5 days to mentally prepare myself to write this recap. 5 days to properly relax, collect my notes and review dozens of gameplay videos to bring you my top hits of E3. The games I believe will be worth your money, and then some. If not then screw off, I worked really hard to give you a TL;DR of E3 and you might just skim over this.
I hate myself.
Let’s get started.
EA Started off the conference as they usually do, promoting their line of Sports games. I’m not a fan of sports games much, but there was one game EA had that really got me excited. A Way Out pits you and a friend as two criminals doing time in prison until you both escape and have to live in the outside world.
Created by the makers of Brothers: a Tale of Two Sons, the game puts an emphasis on the narrative, so much so that you can only play the game with a friend, whether that be via local co-op or online.
Most of Microsoft’s conference was dedicated to the newly named Xbox One X. Known up til now as “Project Scorpio”, the new console will run you a big old 500 bucks, but sports a smaller footprint than all other Xbox consoles. Impressive when you actually see all the games on the big screen running on this new hardware. You’ll also be able to woo all your fans when they see your gameplay over Microsoft’s new split screen livestreaming service “mixer”
Many people may not know about a little game shown off during the Microsoft conference that we’ve actually known about for quite some time, Tacoma. Made by the creators of Gone Home, Tacoma puts the player into the shoes of a Space Station Repair Technician as they traverse a vessel and view the digital footprints and ghosts of the missing crew. We’ve known about Tacoma for a while, but we finally got a release date of August 2nd.
A massive surprise to me was a new sequel to a game I didn’t even think Microsoft remembered existed, Ori and the Will of the Wisps. Highly praised for, well just about everything, Ori and the Blind Forest was a rayman inspired platform adventure game developed by Moon Studios, and Will of the Wisps seems to follow in the latter’s tradition of amazing visuals and memorable music.
While we aren’t exactly sure what this next entry is, my interest is certainly piqued, and knowing that this is BioWare’s new I.P., Anthem has my curiosity. The trailer shows a walled settlement under the protection of the player and their group known as Freelancers, mech suited warriors for hire.
As a freelancer, you have free range of motion. Diving, flying and speeding through lush jungle as you fight monsters and the natural elements of this harsh environment. We know nothing of the story, and little gameplay features, but i’ll let the trailer finish my thoughts for me.
Oh boy Bethesda, how you did not woo me. For starters, I had to stay up til midnight to watch this disappointment of a conference. Bethesda promised their conference would be an amazing showcase of their “Fun” projects. Most of those projects being VR versions of Doom, Fallout 4 and the dead horse that is Skyrim.
Another “Fun” project? How about paid mods? Cause that went over so well the last 8 times. Bethesda Creation Club is a new service Bethesda will be implementing on their games which will allow users to create mods for Consoles and PCs alike that will seamlessly integrate into the player’s games.
My only gripe with the Creation Club is that there is already a massive modding community for these games, and this system just isn’t necessary for those with the technical knowledge and curiosity to modify their games.
There were some gems in the pile of rubbish Bethesda presented however. For starters, the first piece of Dishonored 2 DLC: Death of the Outsider was announced. In the DLC, you will play as Billie Lurk as you go on a revenge mission to try killing The Outsider, the source of all magic in the Dishonored world.
Last but certainly not least, a “new” game from Bethesda, we'll actually a sequel…. Yay. I may sound bitter, but I’m actually pretty excited for this game, Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus. Take control of Nazi killing machine B.J. Blazkowicz in a alternate reality version of the United States, now under Nazi control. Fun humor, augmented abilities, and a monkey with a transplanted cat head….. Ok.
PC Gaming Show
Ooblets is cute, I will own Ooblets. I could bore you very quickly with the tech talk Intel was using during the PC gaming show, or I could leave you with the cutest trailer I think I’ve ever seen in my life. Ooblets features full character customization where you can farm little creatures to do battle with others. Taking inspiration from major powerhouses in gaming such as Pokémon, Harvest Moon, and Animal Crossing, this is a game everyone should keep an eye on.
Griftlands is a game releasing from amazing indie developer Klei Entertainment. Klei Entertainment has released amazing games in the past, and Griftlands is their newest project. Griftlands is a Adventure RPG in which everything and anything is negotiable. You’ll create your character and you’ll venture out into this alien world for fame and riches untold.
Ubisoft stole the show for me. For starters, they have a weird partnership with Nintendo in the form of Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle. Think Mario meets X:Com, really weird, but surprisingly enough worked really well. I’ll let the trailer convince you that this is more than just a cheap crossover ploy.
We already knew gaming powerhouse franchise Assassin’s Creed was gonna make a comeback this year after so many leaks had flooded the world; we even know the setting, ancient Egypt. Assassin’s Creed: Origins is a prequel, and we’ll be following the exploits of Bayek, a Medjay warrior as he protects his people from different threats.
South Park: The Fractured But Whole got a new trailer. While nothing new did get shown, I’m a massive fan of South Park and their previous game Stick of Truth. The trailer shows us more of the story for the game which will likely be parodying the ongoing cinematic universe war between DC and Marvel comics.
Ubisoft had much to show, way too much for me to present in this article, but these were all projects we either knew were coming, or played on the safer side. Until this point in the Expo, no conference gave a satisfying wow factor. Beyond Good and Evil 2 changed that. Beyond Good and Evil released in 2003 to critical acclaim, but sold poorly enough to be considered a commercial failure.
Now 14 years later, the shelved sequel has been given new life as a prequel, the crowd roared in excitement to the title card and the creator of the original game, Michael Ancel, walking onstage with tears in his eyes.
Sony played it a tad risky by devoting much of their presentation to their work in VR. There were however, plenty of games that didn’t need a pair of 500 dollar goggles to play. Days Gone for example, is one of those games. Seen at 2016’s E3, we got to see a new gameplay trailer this year that puts us in the shoes of Deacon, a bearded brute of a biker trying to survive a zombie apocalypse.
We finally got to see more of Detroit: Become Human. Originally based off a tech demo, Quantic Dream, presented in 2012, Detroit: Become Human tells the story of multiple near indiscernible Androids who begin to become self-aware and revolt against their human creators who treat them like slaves.
While not an actual conference, Nintendo didn’t skip a beat rounding out the E3 conferences with their Nintendo Spotlight Livestreams. For starters, the proper sequel to Xenoblade Chronicles was finally given a true trailer. In Xenoblade Chronicles 2 you play as Rex, after he finds a mysterious blade and woman (here me out it makes sense in game) called Pyra who wants to travel to the mystical city of Elysium.
There’s a new Kirby game that doesn’t involve some ridiculous gimmick. I’ve been really hoping for more 2D sidescrollers, and Nintendo has just the fix I need. The game features a new mechanic in which Kirby can command enemies to fight on his side and even combine their powers with ones he has already absorbed.
I DON’T HAVE A GAMEPLAY TRAILER FOR IT, BUT Metroid Prime 4 GOT RELEASED AND I DON’T CARE FOR ANYTHING ELSE NINTENDO TALKED ABOUT. I ACTUALLY NEED A NINTENDO SWITCH NOW MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE!!
Now that I’m done babbling, we also got a better look at Super Mario Odyssey. The trailer for the highly anticipated holiday 2017 release features a catchy new theme song, new attire for Mario to don, and the unusual ability of possession? I was already excited to get my hands on this game, but these new mechanics have only increased my interest on little jump man Mario.
BUT SERIOUSLY I NEED THAT NEW METROID GAME!!
The E3 conferences are cool and all, but they aren’t all the Expo had in store. The show floor was jam packed with developers promoting their games the old fashioned way. These might just be games you’ve never heard of before or just didn’t see much of, but they definitely deserve your attention.
Sonic Mania may be overshadowed by it’s more expensive brother Sonic Forces, but Sonic Mania is just more impressive to me. Sonic Mania is a 2D Sonic game that is being developed by a team of Sonic fans given the official go ahead from Sega. Some parts of the game’s code actually had to have been reverse engineered to catch the feeling of the original games, and the gameplay shows that the team nailed that nostalgic feel.
In Vampyr you play Jonathan Reid, a Physician in a fictitious early 1900s London. Oh, and you’ve just been turned into a Vampire, if that wasn’t obvious by the title. As Jonathan, you must travel through this Action RPG as you come to terms with your new Vampiric nature as you hunt and feed on those you have been sworn to heal. It sounds like a grand old time.
I never played Ni No Kuni, but I was enthralled by its visuals, and Ni No Kuni 2: Revenant Kingdom follows suit. The player takes control of Evan, a young child destined to be king as he travels the world to build his own kingdom with the help of his friends and those he makes along the way.
Well that was E3 for me. I’m sure I missed some of your favorite games from the show floor, but hey, I’m just one lad. I could only do so much, it took 5 days! Maybe next year Gong will send me over to Los Angeles for E3 2018 for even more coverage.
…… Please? I’m begging you guys.