Last week, QA Analyst Steven Farrell and I embarked on the journey of our lives – traveling from Wisconsin to California to attend the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo, more commonly known as E3. Industry badges in hand, we stormed the Los Angeles Convention Center each day from sunrise till sunset in an effort to soak up as much of the E3 2018 experience as possible. We stood in countless lines, tried plenty of demos for unreleased games, and even slayed a monster or two along the way. While we could talk endlessly about our experiences attending the event in-person, we’ve distilled our key takeaways into this lean article for your speed reading pleasure. For a more exhaustive recap of each of the individual games shown at E3, check out this handy site! In the meantime, a few of our most Fil-applicable reflections…
Old Is the New New
From CD Projekt RED’s Cyberpunk 2077 to EA’s Anthem, there was no shortage of new announcements at this year’s E3. However, some of the most noteworthy new games announced will no doubt be familiar to some, as they are remakes or remasters of previously released titles. Whether it’s Capcom’s highly anticipated Resident Evil 2 Remake, Activision’s Spyro Reignited Trilogy, or perhaps the most unexpected of them all: Microsoft’s Battletoads reboot, it seems that most publishers have begun experimenting with adding reimaginings of their classic titles to their release lineup.
Keeping with the theme, SEGA announced during the PC Gaming Show that they’ll soon be bringing 6 classic titles to PC including Valkyrie Chronicles 4 and Yakuza Kiwami – even Nintendo’s new Super Smash Bros. Ultimate announcement was themed around the fact that all playable characters from every past game in the series are present in their new version. We look forward to seeing the critical and commercial response to these re-released titles – though this is likely a trend we will see continue going forward due to the mitigated risk of re-developing a title that has already proved to be commercially successful upon its original release.
Gaming Beyond E3
The Los Angeles Convention Center wasn’t the only destination for E3 fun. Indie publisher Devolver Digital once again held their own E3 celebration in a parking lot directly across the street from the main event, featuring free beverages, plenty of food, and playable demos of some of their upcoming titles. And right next door, fellow label Good Shepherd Entertainment launched their all-new Indie Heaven showcase, a dedicated space for the developers of some of the most anticipated indie games to show off their demos and meet with fellow industry and media partners. A local highlight, Human Head Studios’ Rune was shown off by Project Director Chris Rhinehart, alongside other upcoming releases like Phantom Doctrine, World War Z, Bendy and the Ink Machine, and more. With the main E3 event focusing almost exclusively on high-budget AAA titles, having dedicated spaces for indie developers to highlight their projects is a huge asset, ultimately serving to make one’s overall E3 experience more well-rounded and varied for those who seek out these spaces.
The Reality of Virtual Reality
VR had an impressive showing at E3 2018, bolstered by a number of big-budget, high production titles like Bethesda’s The Elder Scrolls: Blades, Ubisoft’s Transference, and FromSoftware’s Déraciné. Insomniac Games and Oculus Studios unveiled their previously unannounced open-world sci-fi shooter Stormland, and fans of puzzle games even got in on the fun with the announcement of dream-like experience Tetris Effect. VR headset manufacturer HTC Vive had a presence at the event, showing off their latest hardware innovation: a wireless headset adapter that allows for untethered, high spec VR play. As a whole, we were quite excited about all the VR news coming out of E3 – as longtime readers know, we’re big fans of VR here at Filament Games, and we can’t wait to see what lies ahead for the technology.
Steven and I had a great time in LA soaking up all that E3 2018 had to offer. Did you get a chance to attend the show or watch online coverage? What were your favorite moments? Let us know – sound off over on our Facebook or Twitter!