Another E3 has come and gone – and with it came surprise hits and some expected punchy moments. Mike walked away pleasantly surprised about the games to come later this year.
The slew of titles on display this year showcased such a sheer diversity of games. Though E3 started off with the wet puddle that was EA’s anemic showing, the show only got better from there. Solid showcases from Microsoft, Bethesda, and Nintendo had me grinning from ear-to-ear as I saw what each had in store for the future. If Breath of the Wild and Mario Odyssey hadn’t already sold me a switch, bet your bottom dollar that Smash Ultimate will have me chomping at the bit for one.
Critical Magnifying Glass
Conspicuously absent from each show were any plans for VR. While undoubtedly the “future” of gaming (as VR pundits love saying), the pricing and lack of quality support may have hampered the industrial push we’ve seen for the past couple of years. Growing pains and the lack of appeal to casual consumers may have VR strategists considering their next move for the coming years. That’s all speculation, of course. It all depends on how each company feels about the viability of future VR consoles.
VR aside, gamers of all kinds have tons to look forward to. Sony and Microsoft’s hefty first-party exclusive investments appeared to bear fruit at this year’s E3. Fan-favorites like Halo: Infinity, Gears 5, and Forza Horizon 4 were just the tip of the iceberg for Microsoft’s seeded capital. The acquisition of new developers like Ninja Theory should strengthen their lineup over the coming years.
Sony showed a stunning array of first-party titles as well at E3. The Last of Us: Part II, Ghost of Tsushima, and Spider-Man were the names on everyone’s lips after the conference ended. But the surprising reveal of Resident Evil 2 – and the gorgeous remastered version of Raccoon City – demanded my attention above most of the latter titles.
But which games ruled them all at E3 2018? Here are my personal Top 5 games of the show.
Ghost of Tsushima
What a wonderful surprise from Sony. Sucker Punch is back – but not with another Infamous title like I guessed. No – Ghost of Tsushima looks like a gorgeous hack-and-slash romp through feudal Japan. The trailer they showed off this year had beautiful blossoms of a Japanese countryside – starkly contrasted with sacking samurai. Stealth and combat were central to the demo shown – going for a God of War-esque combat style with brutal third-person cuts with katanas. I can’t begin to tell you how excited I am to see how Ghost of Tsushima turns out. Out of nowhere, it’s just – bang.
If 2016’s DOOM was a triumphant return to hectic 90’s-style shooters, DOOM: ETERNAL looks to amp up that adrenaline another notch. Promising more crazy Hellish locales, more Demon-slaying action, and more explosions, ID looks like they know what to do with the sequel. And with some fan-requested… things… implemented (like seeing DOOM’s Earth and more of Hell) this game’s sure to kick some a**.
Devil May Cry 5
Many die-hard fans of the Devil May Cry series may have hated the rebooted DMC: Devil May Cry with a passion usually reserved only for disgraced YouTube celebrities. An apologetic Capcom revealed the new Devil May Cry title, which looks like a continuation of the narrative from the older titles. Platinum-haired Nero is back, along with a new grapple-arm that looks absolutely fantastic. The gameplay demo showed Nero kicking some demon tookus, quipping like a king, and relaxing in a speeding van. Keep Devil May Cry 5 on your radar for its release later next year.
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
If Nioh was just a Ninja Gaiden inspired version of Dark Souls, then Sekiro looks like From Software got a hold of it and twisted the concept further into their own image. I love the idea of adding vertical traversal into a From Software setting – just a bit more spice to add to the From formula. Combat looks sufficiently brutal – and much faster than we’re used to. With a grappling mechanic, gigantic crumbling architecture, and punishing-as-hell combat, this has all the makings of another great title by From.
Skryim: Very Special Edition
When you’re made fun of enough, there are only two things to do. Either you try and change the narrative, or you OWN the people’s narrative. There’s no end to the torment Bethesda’s endured for porting Skyrim to every platform under the sun. Rather than resting on their laurels, they may have created the greatest tongue-in-cheek moment by a major developer. This bears saying: this game is real. You can download the skill for Amazon’s Alexa for free if you own an Echo. Have a laugh, romp around, and kill some mud crabs. It’s good for a laugh.