This summer is shaping up to have the most unique E3 in a long time, but perhaps not for the reasons that the showrunners, the Entertainment Software Association, would prefer.
Major publishers seem to be pulling their toes out of the E3 bath at the moment. Sony have announced they will not be showing anything this year and, additionally, Activision have announced that they will have no booth on the show floor this year, perhaps indicating they’re focusing on their own live experiences.
Whatever their reasoning, it now marks two of the largest companies in the business taking steps of various sizes away from the convention landscape. Nevertheless, there’s still plenty to look forward to this year. Here’s what I’ll be putting on my bingo card for when 11th June comes around.
Even as a huge Halo fan, I find it really hard to get excited for Halo: Infinite after 343 Industries’ track record
Some of the biggest players, I’m sad to say, are the ones I’m very much not excited for. Even as a huge Halo fan, I find it really hard to get excited for Halo: Infinite after 343 Industries’ track record with the series. Microsoft, however, has been killing it with firmware updates in previous months, such as when the Xbox One received keyboard and mouse support last November. It may be a little boring, but the these quality of life updates really make the recently lackluster consoles a lot more appealing.
On the brighter side, I’m dying to get a look at Nintendo. It’s inevitable that we’re in for a look at both the upcoming Animal Crossing on the Switch, as well as their latest entry to the Fire Emblem series, Three Houses. They’ve shown bits and pieces from both of these games and I’m very excited to see what they have to show us when their event comes up.
It’s likely we’re going to see some new DLC for Smash Bros. Ultimate as well, so fighting fans should buckle up for some new faces coming to the Switch.
After the shaky launches of two Battlefront titles from DICE, my hope is that EA have something special up their sleeve with Respawn Entertainment
EA will likely have plenty to show at their EA Play event. But again, I’m not sure how much of it will actually be valuable to a hardcore audience. As always, they’ll pad out their event with their undeniably lucrative lineup of sports titles. I can never get behind these as it always seems to me that FIFA and Madden and the like never seem to actually make any changes.
Another game on the ‘don’t care’ pile is Anthem, which is likely to get some sort of showing at the event this year. Anthem was a watered down albeit visually pretty RPG from a BioWare team that is thoroughly gutted of good writers. What I am more excited for is a closer look at Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.
After the shaky launches of two Battlefront titles from DICE, my hope is that EA have something special up their sleeve with Respawn Entertainment, who are confirmed to be showing off their new title in June’s expo. Speaking of Respawn, earlier in 2019, their CEO Vince Zampella said that while Titanfall 3 was not in development, we could expect something new from the Titanfall franchise by the end of 2019. As someone who never got tired of Titanfall, I’m excited by an outside hope they’ll reveal details of this at E3.
I hope we get a better look as to what Crystal Dynamics, who previously developed Tomb Raider, have in store for Marvel's Avengers.
I always have mixed feelings coming away from Ubisoft’s conferences. On one hand, the entire experience feels about as ‘real’ as Donald Trump’s integrity. However, one of their titles has me more optimistic than usual. I can’t say I’m not excited for Beyond Good and Evil 2, which is bound to be shown off more this year. Something about the visual style and the care taken when revealing this tells me on of two things.
Either, the project is having rough development and nothing worthy of showcasing is ready yet, or Ubisoft really think Beyond 2 will be a hit and they want to keep it under tight wraps to maintain the surprise factor of an E3 conference.
Finally, I’m holding out hope to get news from Square Enix. They signed a deal back in 2017 with Marvel to create an Avengers game, and since we’ve had tidbits of news and a painfully short teaser. Along with more gameplay of Final Fantasy VII: HD, I hope we get a better look as to what Crystal Dynamics, who previously developed Tomb Raider, have in store for Marvel's Avengers.
With less than a month now until E3, we can only hold our breath until these big pieces of news drop.