Yesterday at E3 2018: Microsoft talked up its next system, Devolver brought the crazy (again), and Bethesda unveiled some stuff…
Just like last year, Microsoft, Bethesda and Devolver Digital gave us a whole hell of a lot to talk about – let’s just dive straight in!
News from the Xbox E3 Briefing:
Phew… This was a monster briefing – scroll down to make sure that you don’t miss all of the other news!
We got some more information about Project Scarlett:
By far the biggest news from Microsoft’s annual briefing was its teaser video for its “next generation console”. As with the one that it made for the Xbox One X (then referred to as Project Scorpio), the short video was a mix of talking heads and close-up hardware shots.
The system is expected to be “four times as powerful as the Xbox One X” and is designed to run games at up to 120 frames per second and in 8K resolution. Furthermore, Microsoft is also leveraging SSD storage to dramatically speed up load times and is promising to support games from every Xbox generation.
Head of Xbox Phil Spencer reaffirmed Microsoft’s commitment to designing the new system to be focussed on gaming first and foremost in an apparent reference to the criticism that the company copped during the Xbox One’s original reveal.
Halo Infinite is a “spiritual reboot” launching alongside Project Scarlett:
This was a bittersweet moment for Halo fans because we got a brand new story trailer for the game, but we also learnt that it’s not coming out until late next year.
Keanu Reeves is in Cyberpunk 2077:
As if we didn’t need another reason to be hyped for CD Projekt RED’s next project, Mr. Wick himself graced Microsoft’s stage to announce the game’s release date: April 16, 2020.
Elden Ring has officially been announced:
Following a month of leaks, FromSoftware finally announced its worst kept secret: a collaboration between Souls Director Hidetaka Miyazaki and Game of Thrones creator George R. R. Martin. The brief announcement trailer confirmed the game’s fantasy setting but didn’t divulge much else.
Gears 5 is coming this year:
The Coalition Studio Head took to the stage following a brief trailer to announce that Gears 5 is set to release worldwide on September 10 and that Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers will get access to the game’s Ultimate Edition at launch. Viewers were also treated to an introductory trailer for the game’s Escape cooperative mode.
Oh, and folks who preorder or play Gears 5 during its first week will get the chance to play as a Terminator T-800 Endoskeleton as part of a Terminator: Dark Fate tie-in promotion.
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate now includes the PC offering:
Hot on the heels of announcing that Xbox Games Pass was coming to PC, Microsoft has now included this new service into Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which already includes Xbox Game Pass for Console and Xbox Live Gold.
Project xCloud is very much a real product:
Head of Xbox Phil Spencer capped off the briefing by talking about the company’s two-pronged streaming initiative: a PlayStation Remote Play equivalent named Console Streaming in addition to Microsoft’s Azure-based traditional game streaming service.
News from the 2019 Bethesda E3 Showcase:
Bethesda had a great showing once again this year, pledging not only to improve Fallout 76 but also to bring out a number of really good-looking titles!
Ghostwire: Tokyo is a new action thriller from Tango Gameworks:
The folks behind The Evil Within are channeling their efforts into making a video game version of what happened after Thanos snapped his fingers in Avengers: Infinity War. This release came with one of the most beautiful moments of the show, with Shinji Mikami taking the stage to introduce his protégé, Ikumi Nakamura, who worked as part of the art team on Okami, Bayonetta, and The Evil Within and has now taken a step up to direct Ghostwire… and also become the games industry’s new favourite person.
Arkane Lyon’s latest release is called DEATHLOOP:
The Dishonored series developer takes players to “the lawless island of Blackreef” during “an eternal struggle between two extraordinary assassins.” Based on the trailer, Blackreef looks like an exciting setting complete with ghosts, the supernatural, time loops and all manner of action. Based on how well Arkane has done with Dishonored, this is going to be one to look forward to!
Neither Arkane nor Bethesda have said anything about a release date for DEATHLOOP as of this writing, but we’ll be sure to update when it’s announced.
DOOM Eternal has a release date and a massive collector’s edition:
id Software announced that it’s bringing the latest entry into the storied series to Google Stadia, PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One on November 22. The $200 collector’s edition is pretty major, too: you’ll get a Steelbook case, a lithograph, a lore book, a bunch of in-game cosmetic content for use in the multiplayer BATTLEMODE… and a full-scale, wearable DOOM Slayer helmet, pictured below on an actual human being.
Bethesda also showed off a new story trailer, and one for BATTLEMODE; those are embedded below for your viewing pleasure.
Wolfenstein: Youngblood’s latest trailer is all about killing Nazis… together:
We all knew that first part, so Machinegames used the game’s official E3 trailer to emphasise its cooperative aspects; players can play with an AI-controlled companion or another person, and Bethesda is offering a “buddy pass” with the deluxe edition so that a friend can play along without owning the game.
Wolfenstein: Youngblood is set to release on PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One on July 26.
Fallout 76 is finally coming into its own:
After some nervous moments discussing the issues Fallout 76 has faced, Bethesda got straight into showing us that its second year of content, dubbed Wastelanders, is following up on a number of fans’ issues. Human NPCs – a very, very heavily-requested feature – are making their return to the series, here to reclaim the Appalachian Wasteland that players have spent the last eight months rebuilding. Players will be able to interact with these characters, of course, with full dialogue trees, quest lines and rewards on offer.
Bethesda also revealed that “fuck yeah [it] put a battle royale in Fallout 76;” the Nuclear Winter game mode sees players battling to become the new Overseer of Vault 51. The mode takes place in the game’s existing environments and has some PvE aspects to it while also retaining the more traditional battle royale tropes. What makes this mode different from other battle royales is the nukes (“duh”) that players can pick up and unleash on their enemies, which seems like a bunch of explosive fun. There’s also a new progression system called Overseer Ranks that unlock new perks, skins and experience for your Adventure Mode character.
Nuclear Winter and the Wastelanders updates are both set to be released for free in the Fall (Spring, if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere), and Bethesda announced a free week for all platforms, starting today and running until June 17.
News from the Devolver Digital E3 Press Conference:
Devolver loves to have a laugh, and we love Devolver for that, but the indie giant’s press conference had its fair share of fantastic-looking announcements as well.
Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is coming to PS4 and Windows next year:
It sounds like it could be a boxing game, but Gears POP! developer Mediatonic is bringing us another genuinely cute piece of work. Based on what we’ve seen so far, Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is best described as a cross between a battle royale and an obstacle course, and if it lives up to the trailer below it’s going to be one hell of a fun party game! It’s coming to PS4 and Windows PC at some point next year.
The Messenger is getting free DLC:
Picnic Panic is a free-to-play expansion that sees the game’s hero take a vacation… to an island that’s brimming with monsters and enemies. Alongside three new levels to enjoy, Rainbowdragoneyes has come back and added 18 new tunes to its soundtrack. Picnic Panic is set to arrive on the PC, PS4 and Switch versions of The Messenger on July 11.
An Enter the Gungeon arcade game is coming early next year:
A play on the arcade classic House of the Dead, Enter the Gungeon: House of the Gundead is a pixellated first-person light gun shooter that will hit arcades early next year. If you want it in your own home or office, though, it’ll set you back a casual $4,999.
Carrion is a very interesting “reverse horror game”:
Developer Phobia Game Studio has players in control of what’s best described as a “big, bad, tentacle monster”, terrorising its human victims as it works its way through a prison and research facility.
According to its Steam page, Carrion is set to be released on July 1, 2020.
An 8-in-1 collection of “bootleg” Devolver games is out now:
Devolver Digital loves to take shots at the rest of the industry; this beauty came at the expense of gaming’s grey market, and it’s available right now. Devolver Bootleg contains eight “original rip-offs” of Devolver-published titles: Hotline Milwaukee (Hotline Miami), Ape Out Jr. (Ape Out x Donkey Kong Jr.), Enter the Gun Dungeon (Enter the Gungeon), Shootyboots (Downwell), Catsylvania (Gato Roboto), Super Absolver Mini: Turbo Fighting Championship (Absolver… x Street Fighter Turbo?), Pikubiku Ball Stars (Pikuniku), and Luftrousers (Luftrausers). It’s on Steam and it’ll set you back $4.95 – a 1% discount on the $4.99 list price.
In other E3 2019 news:
- A Blair Witch game is coming, and it looks just as scary as the film: One of the few announcements that didn’t get leaked before the event, Blair Witch is set to be released on Windows PC and Xbox One on August 30. It’s coming to us courtesy of Bloober Team, an adorably-named studio whose credits include Observer and Layers of Fear.
- Venture into The Outer Worlds this October: Announced at The Game Awards last year, Obsidian Entertainment’s latest piece of work now has a release date: it’s coming to PS4, Windows PC and Xbox One on October 25! We also got a new trailer.
- Bleeding Edge looks like fun: The trailer leaked last week, but Ninja Theory’s latest release is a third-person multiplayer arena-brawler that features some interesting characters, fun weapons and environmental combat. It looks like what you’d get if you put Borderlands and Overwatch together with Super Smash Bros., and it looks bloody cool.
- Minecraft meets Diablo in Minecraft Dungeons: Microsoft debuted a new trailer for the dungeon-crawling RPG set in the Minecraft universe, set to be released in Spring 2020 (Autumn, if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere).Microsoft has acquired Double Fine Productions: Microsoft has really doubled down (pardon the pun) on creating a major first-party offering, and the Brütal Legend, Grim Fandango and Psychonauts developer is the company’s latest acquisition to that end. Finally, after fifteen years, Microsoft is finally publishing a Psychonauts game.
- We got our first look at Psychonauts 2’s gameplay: It’s looking just as fun as the original, and despite Microsoft’s acquisition of Double Fine, it’s still coming to “ALL promised platforms” – that’s Linux, Mac, PS4, Windows PC and Xbox.
- Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 is going to be a powerhouse: One of the best gaming controllers ever-made is being improved with even more customisability and control.
- Forza meets LEGO: Playground Games continued the conference’s cuteness streak with a fun trailer for Forza Horizon 4 LEGO Speed Champions.
- We got another look at Battletoads: We didn’t get any real information aside from the fact that it will feature three-player couch co-op, but this is one really, really cool looking throwback to gaming’s older days!
- Phantasy Star Online 2 is coming to the West: Sega is bringing the hit online RPG to Windows PC and Xbox One in Spring 2020 (Autumn in the Southern Hemisphere), more than seven years after its debut in Japan. It’s free-to-play, which is awesome, and Sega’s also bringing over all of the content it’s released so far. No word yet as far as whether the mobile, PS4 or Switch versions are coming to the West as well, but we’ll stay on top of it!
- That unnamed Dragon Ball RPG game is now Dragon Ball Z Kakarot: Relive Goku’s most well-known exploits in a new action game from Bandai Namco and .hack and Naruto: Ultimate Ninja developer CyberConnect 2. It’s set to be released on PC, PS4 and Xbox One early in 2020.
- The newest Tales of… title is called Tales of Arise: The long-running JRPG series is coming to PCs, PS4s and Xbox Ones in the West next year.
- State of Decay 2 is getting a huge expansion: It hasn’t got a release date as of yet, but State of Decay 2: Heartland will include two new stories, a new map that serves as a direct continuation of the original State of Decay story, and “new dangers” for players to face.
- Twelve Minutes is Microsoft’s token E3 indie special, and it looks interesting: Coming to us from AAA development veteran Luis Antonio and publisher Annapurna Games, Twelve Minutes places you in a twelve-minute time loop in which you’ll have to stop a police detective from breaking into your home, accusing your wife of murder and beating you to death. Annapurna suggests that it will “[blend] the dream-like tension of The Shining with the claustrophobia of Rear Window and the fragmented structure of Memento,” which makes for one very interesting piece of gaming.
- Way to the Woods is absolutely gorgeous, and it’s coming next year: We don’t know when in 2020, but the trailer we saw here was even more beautiful than the art Melbourne-based developer Anthony Tan shared three-and-a-half years ago.
- Wasteland 3 takes players into Colorado: It’s a pretty significant, and very snowy, departure from the previous two titles, which were set in the arid desert climates of Arizona and Texas, but it’s looking pretty good! We didn’t get too much other information out of the trailer, though.
- We’re getting another Microsoft Flight Simulator: Finally, after a very long wait, Microsoft unveiled a beautiful new entry in the fabled simulation franchise.Beth
- There’s a Commander Keen mobile game on the way: One of id Software’s oldest franchises, Zenimax Online Studios’ Commander Keen mobile game is set to offer a single-player story and a PvP online mode, and the trailer shows off its old-school Cartoon Network vibe really nicely.
- Bethesda has its own streaming technology, Orion: id’s take on the streaming experience is geared towards reducing the bandwidth and computing power needed to make streaming a video game a good experience. id plans to accomplish this by optimising the game engines themselves to work better “in a cloud environment,” rather than through hardware. The first test takes place soon, with members of the DOOM Slayers Club able to test DOOM on the service later this year. Sign up now for your chance to join the test!
- Rage 2 is getting its first expansion later this year: There’s plenty of “new s#%t coming soon,” with weekly content updates adding new game modes, enemies, vehicles, driveable mechs, and even cheats, while the Rise of the Ghosts expansion – set to release later this year – will introduce more story content, another enemy faction to battle against, new weapons and abilities, and of course, new places to explore.
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