By: Ryan Jenkins & Imran Chaudhry
For this edition of 8-bits of news, we thought we would summarise the highlights of the E3 conferences, plural.
Sony’s E3 conference was an interesting one this year, and whilst it premiered plenty of exciting new trailers from upcoming games, it lacked new titles and IPs.
An interesting and maybe prolonged musical intro to a new Uncharted: Lost Legacy trailer showed off a lot more action and an antagonist we already hate. Candidly Uncharted-like, the trailer shows us the new goal of Nadine and Chloe, to find the tusk of Ganesha, whilst solving deadly ancient puzzles, doing some extreme outdoor parkour and killing off hordes of annoying men.
Horizon Zero Dawn is getting its first DLC called ‘The Frozen Wilds’ which entails a frozen mountainous area that Aloy pursues in search of its secrets.
Detroit: Become Human debuted a new story trailer with a new protagonist, most likely the main character we will be playing as, Marcus (no not from Watch Dogs 2 sadly). Marcus is an android hell-bent on freeing androids from the grasp of their creators – humans. The trailer shows how Marcus can ‘hack’ androids to become sentient and self conscious rather than zombie-like servants. The game also lets you decide whether to take a violent approach or passive one to the game, resulting in different character progression for Marcus.
Sony are really looking to push PSVR; with Skyrim VR coming to PlayStation, that game will never be allowed to die, along with many other interesting VR titles.
Other notable trailers include the God of War story trailer, Spiderman gameplay, Monster Hunter World, Shadow of the Colossus, Call of Duty WWII & Days Gone.
Bethesda’s E3 conference was awkwardly timed for everyone no matter what your time zone, so many people were expecting a spectacle of a show. Unfortunately, the entire conference may have well have been uploaded onto YouTube as that was all it was, a video after an introduction.
None the less the games revealed were great, including Fallout 4 VR, DOOM VFR (VR for short), Skyrim for switch and new instalments for the Wolfenstein and Evil Within franchises.
Wolfenstein II can only be described as an insanely fun looking Nazi killing shooter, where you will shred up Nazi’s whilst in a wheelchair brandishing dual machine guns and potentially even take acid to aid the sadistic fun. Play this game on release on October 27th. The Evil Within 2 brings back the psychological gore fest that was The Evil Within. Bringing us Heidio Kojima P.T. Silent Hill vibes with scenes of thin corridors and the promise of jump scares a plenty.
3. Nintendo Spotlight
It looks like we’re finally getting those third party games on the Nintendo Switch, and no, it’s not Skyrim yet. Rocket League and Fifa 18 have been revealed to be coming to the Nintendo Switch, with Rocket League’s fast pace jet car football looking like a promising multiplayer edition to the console.
Super Mario Odessey has a release date and we now know a lot more about this game. The more we learn, the weirder it gets, but that’s definitely a good thing. Using Mario’s trusty hat which can now come off for the first time in the franchise, you can use it as a platform and also use it to inhabit certain objects and/or enemies from Taxi’s to a T-Rex. Think thats as wacky as it gets? When inhabiting something, it will wear Mario’s hat and gain a classic Mario moustache. Other than the craziness of the game, coins are now currency, different areas will have different currency and there are even some special 2D areas to pay homage to the original games.
The announcement we’ve all been waiting for, after the disappointing Pokémon Direct; Nintendo, The Pokémon Company & Gamefreak have announced they are working hard together to bring the core RPG Pokémon games to the Nintendo Switch.
The last notable surprise treat from Nintendo is that Metroid Prime 4 is in development for Switch, releasing a long held sigh of relief from the core Nintendo fanbase.
We saw more of Pokkén Tournament DX, Splatoon 2 and ARMS. Other notable announcements and trailers included Yoshi, Fire Eblem Warriors, Zelda DLC, Zelda champions amiibos and Mario, Rabbids Kingdom Battle and more.
4. Devolver Digital
Devolver Digital has it’s first E3 conference; who is that you may ask? we don’t know either. Joking aside, Devolver Digital are a rapidly growing indie publisher and they nailed their E3 conference.
One way to describe the conference would be insane, another would be satire and another would be ridiculous, it was all of those. From shooting guns to stop applause, presenting a PC screen from the 90s that will literally take all that money you are ‘throwing at the screen’ to get new games and lots of fake blood. Devolver put on the best show E3 has seen in a long time, knocking Bethesda down a peg or two.
Watch the show below, but be warned there is excess cheese, fake blood and video game industry satire.
5. PC Gaming Show
The PC Gaming Show for E3 2017 was a well done showcase of all things PC gaming from VR E-Sports to fun indies.
One announcement for the nostalgic gamers who have been PC gaming since the age of time, Age of Empires Definitive Edition is coming to PC with remastered 4K graphics and classic gameplay upgraded to todays standards.
Lawbreakers Cliff Bleszinski came on stage to give a release date for the game after many months of alpha and beta rounds, it will land in stores on August 8th. The fast paced team shooter takes everything great about Call of Duty multiplayer, Quake and DOOM, ultimately turning it into an extremely fun gravity defying experience.
The Last Night is a new game, that reinvents what it means to be a 2D platformer. With stunning neon backgrounds mixed with layered pixel art, this is a game that looks more like interactive art. The gameplay itself is also extremely dynamic, with the game set across multiple nights, NPCs will remember your conversations from previous nights and act accordingly in future confrontations.
Other notable games announced were Tunic, Lone Echo/Echo Arena and Grift Lands.
6. Ubisoft Announcements
Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle
One of the weirdest announcements is in relation to a collaborative project between Ubisoft and console giant Nintendo. The game in question is titled Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, a cross over title between the Super Mario franchise and Rayman’s beloved rabbids. The game will feature a strategic turn based combat style, emulating XCOM. Combat includes Mega Man arm like weapons that the player will need to use against their opponents in order to traverse the environment.
Beyond Good and Evil 2
Many fans will rejoice as this sequel/ prequel addition to the cult game ‘Beyond Good and Evil’ was announced on stage nearing the end of the conference. A visually stunning trailer (provided below) highlights the premise of the new game, introducing some interesting characters:
Skull and Bones
A new IP was introduced on stage, emulating the naval combat of prior Assassin’s Creed game, titled ‘Skull and Bones’. Although the mechanics are a little derivative to say the least (basically an amalgamation of Black Flag and For Honor), the graphics are impeccable. Bear in mind that the multiplayer aspect seems to be the main focal point of this new game, so if there is a campaign, don’t expect it to be any better than the disappointment that was For Honor.
Far Cry 5
New details were disclosed regarding the next instillment of the Far Cry series. Trailers were already released prior to E3, though Ubisoft have delved deeper in the setting, plot structure and out unfortunate protagonist. Set in a rural part of Montana, the game explores deeply trouble religious fanatics in a dystopian environment; Far Cry 5 is set to come out on the 27th February 2018
Assassin’s Creed: Origins
The next addition to the AC franchise has FINALLY been announced. Although rumours have been circulating the web for several months, it has definitively been confirmed by Ubisoft that the next iteration will be set in ancient Egypt, with the protagonist Bayek having a animal companion to aid the accumulation of landscape data, perfect of stealth and reconnaissance missions. Again, this new feature is derivative in true Ubisoft fashion, though would likely come in handy as you navigate through the ancient pyramids.
7. Microsoft Announcements
Microsoft led this year’s E3, introducing new IP, a brand new high end console and dozens of launch exclusives.
Up until now, very little was definitively known about this new hardware, though Microsoft have announced the new console titled Xbox One X (not to be confused with Xbox One S). Although the title is a bit of a disappointment, the hardware is on par with low end gaming PCs, supporting 4K gameplay and promises to enhance the visuals on 1080p TVs. The One X will be compatible with all current generation Xbox accessories (because let’s face it, people would be pissed if it wasn’t) and maintains support for backwards compatible games. Bare in mind that the new console comes with a hefty £449 price tag attached. Whether or not the hardware upgrade will justify the price has yet to be seen.
It seems a beautiful and immersive new IP was announced by BioWare onstage. As shown in the trailer below, the new game, titled ‘Anthem’ will allow the player to explore a vibrant landscape with a series of technologically advanced weaponry with friends (think Avatar’s Pandora meets Mass Effect: Andromeda).
Microsoft follows the event with dozens of additional game trailers, one of the most notable being Crackdown 3.
8. EA Announcements
As you can imagine, the focal point for EA’s announcements were centered around their sport collection.
A Way Out
A new innovative IP was announced by the creators of ‘Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons’. The game is played entirely in split screen and requires the coordination of two players through online or local co-op in order to progress through game. Based on the footage, the game is reminiscent of Uncharted, with an intriguing new twist that challenges the players.
The highlight of their announcements was Star Wars: Battlefront II, presented by Janina Gavankar, Iden Versio herself. During this they featured new footage from the game and delighted viewers around the globe with a half hour demo on one of their multiplayer matches.
Other notable announcements by EA include Madden NFL 18 and Need for Speed.
That about wraps up our E3 coverage. What was your favourite announcement and what took you by surprise? Tweet us your thoughts @JenChauMedia.