Microsoft had a few more reveals, including PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, State of Decay 2, Minecraft in 4K and DragonBall FighterZ. They then proceeded to an extended look at Sea of Thieves, Rare’s open-world pirate game, which featured treasure hunting, riddle solving and a large-scale naval battle in the middle of a massive storm. It was arguably the highlight of the show; the colour scheme is bright and vibrant and the gameplay looks incredibly fun. Cuphead and Crackdown 3 finally received release dates of September and November respectively, and were followed by a length demo of Middle-earth: Shadow of War and the reveal of Ori and the Will of the Wisps. They then announced that original Xbox games are being added to backwards compatibility, and then closed their show with the big reveal of Bioware’s new IP, Anthem. It is a game featuring high-tech exosuits known as Javelins, with which players can brave the wilderness, exploring and killing the enemies they came across. It looks like a great mix between a shooter and open-world exploration, similar to Destiny, and is slated for 2018.
Next up was Bethesda who frankly had the least interesting showing this year. The only new reveals were Skyrim and Fallout 4 in VR, followed by The Evil Within 2 and Wolfenstein II, with the latter two games revealing some great trailers. Ubisoft was next, surprisingly having a phenomenal press conference. They started with the reveal of Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, which is a very interesting SRPG exclusive to the Switch. It features turn-based strategy combat as well as simple open-world exploration, and releases on 29th August. It also allowed Miyamoto to make one of his trademark entrances, which was incredibly fun. The director of the game was also visibly emotional, which made the presentation that much more heartfelt.
The Crew 2 was showcased next which showed off several different vehicles to race in, and Skull and Bones, a game based exclusively around 3v3 pirate naval battles. They also had an extended demo of Far Cry 5 where they revealed Boomer, your dog companion.
Finally came their big announcement: Beyond Good and Evil 2, 15 years after the original game was released. It acts as a prequel and the trailer was phenomenal. It depicted the setting and characters incredibly well, and hinted at some gameplay mechanics. Very little is known about it as of yet, though the internet is buzzing with speculation.
Sony’s press conference this year unfortunately, didn’t meet the high expectations of their previous two years, but it was still a good showing overall. They lead with Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, which seems very similar to previous games in the franchise. The witty banter and over-the-top action set pieces are still here, only this time with Chloe and Nadine heading the adventure.
Next up was a demo of Days Gone, which seemed more promising this time. The gameplay seemed fun and the number of zombies on-screen was impressive, but the zombie animals, such as the zombie bear that ended the demo, gave it an extra dimension. Monster Hunter World was the next announcement placing the massive series back on a Sony home console. With impressive graphics and new features such as camouflage and taking cover, it seems like it’s the natural evolution of the franchise.
A big surprise announcement came in the form of Shadow of the Colossus, a remake of the beloved PS2 classic which is lauded as one of the greatest games ever made. Then a few PSVR games were shown off, before moving onto God of War, where an extended trailer showed off the bond between Kratos and his son Artreus, as well as the new over-the-shoulder action gameplay.
After that was time to tease David Cage’s new game Detroit: Become Human, with a pair of androids attempting to ‘awaken’ their fellow androids and rebel against their human masters. As with the first trailer, there seem to be multiple different outcomes depending on the options chosen.
Finally, to close off their show, Sony showed off Insomniac’s Spider-Man, which received an extended gameplay demo. The game’s taken many cues from Rocksteady’s phenomenal Batman Arkham series. The stealth and combat were incredibly similar, though it has action set pieces with QTEs and quips galore, like Uncharted. The exploration and gameplay seem great, and it is set for a 2018 release.
Finally, we were treated to the Nintendo Spotlight, a short 30 minute video which showcased many new upcoming Switch games. First, Rocket League was confirmed to be coming to the Switch with exclusive items and cross-platform play, in 2017. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 then revealed a trailer which shared story details and basic gameplay, though it should be said that the English voice acting so far seems abysmal. Hopefully this will be rectified before its release. New unnamed Kirby and Yoshi Switch games were also teased, with simple trailers that demonstrated the 2.5D platforming and co-op functionality; both are coming out in 2018.
The two biggest Nintendo reveals were Metroid Prime 4 and a new “core Pokémon game” for the Switch, which fans have been clamouring since the Switch was announced, though nothing more was said. The Zelda DLCs received some more information, with the second DLC pack focusing on the four Champions and Zelda. And finally, Super Mario Odyssey ended the Spotlight with a phenomenal showing. New hat powers will allow Mario to possess enemies, NPCs and inanimate objects and control them for an amount of time. A few new worlds were shown as well as some sections featuring old-school 2D Mario sections, akin to Zelda: A Link Between Worlds’ painting mechanics. Odyssey releases in October 2017.
All in all, though not the best we’ve seen, this E3 didn’t disappoint. There were many surprise announcements though some were noticeably missing, such info on The Last of Us Part II and on Nintendo’s online service. Still what we got was good, and many of the announced games look very promising indeed.