E3 2018 was a blast this year, exposing us to trailers of many brand new games, as well as discussion of gameplay features during the lengthy conferences. Many famous icons of the industry were present this E3, which improved its quality by a lot. Each conference had its ups and downs, and some of the games shown were better than the others. The choice to be made was a hard one, as each game had something praiseworthy in it.
The list here shows some of our handpicked “best” games from each conference:
Anthem (Electronic Arts) – Electronic Arts had a pretty laid back conference this year, clearly seen from the lack of enthusiasm at the constant repackaging of franchises like FIFA, NBA and others as new games. EA Originals, however had some applause for Unravel 2, which had a very decent first game, and we look forward to a sequel with coop. However, non arguably, the best game discussed during the conference was Anthem. Developed by Bioware, the game sees a post apocalyptic universe where players use Juggernaut suits to explore a shared online world, where another player can come in at any moment to explore along side you. Co-op forms a decent portion of it, from the looks of it. However, considering the debacle on Mass Effect : Andromeda, which was average at best, with a mediocre storyline, and the fact that Electronic Arts never learns their lesson about not pushing in microtransactions in every game they develop (be they cosmetic or not), Anthem looks to be a title worth cautious excitement. The always online open world, and the presence may be bothersome, but it’s still something to wait and watch.
Beyond Good and Evil 2 (Ubisoft) – If driving off people with games with bad business practices is EA’s forte, then Ubisoft is known for keeping people’s expectations in tow with average games. Few recent Ubisoft titles were good, as good as the ones that keep the name of the franchise. Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry are two brilliant examples, where Assassin’s Creed Origins copied a hell lot of mechanics from other games in order to stand out in the crowd, and Far Cry 5 removed some age old mechanics which made the games progressively worse with each sequel. The Division’s issues clearly show the need for a sequel – which happened this E3, also inviting some “boos” from the audience. The two games which attracted some attention are Beyond Good and Evil 2, getting a sequel 15 years after the first game, this time with coop gameplay with a huge open world for the players to explore, and Starlink, a new game that looks to be a story based No Man’s Sky. Ubisoft’s desperation to win back the players is seen from the fact that they will be allowing community intervention both online as well as offline, where they are inviting testers to help polish the game. If Beyond Good and Evil 2 indeed manages to deliver, the players will definitely regain their lost faith. That’s still a big “if” at this point.
Rage 2 (Bethesda) – Bethesda’s E3 conference was something we were looking forward to this year, and they delivered, without any doubt. New titles announced included Doom Eternal, Elder Scrolls VI, Elder Scrolls Blades, Starfield, Fallout 76, Wolfenstein: Young Blood and Rage 2. Every single announcement was exciting, and needless to say, people were excited for Todd Howard, and he didn’t disappoint either. The only damper was in Fallout 76, where old fans took to the online forums, sounding their disappointment with a spinoff like that in a story based universe like Fallout. Doom Eternal and particularly Elder Scrolls VI have quite some excitement lined up for it, despite the fact that the only trailers shown about them were teasers. Needless to say, the game which had the most details covered shortly before E3 had the most attention – which was Rage 2. The original Rage was underperformer, till people saw Rage 2 which has a Mad Max feel to it – and came back to experience the story of Rage, in case they missed out on anything. The game engine looks great, the open world looks great, the vehicles and the weapons look great – what can possibly go wrong? Add a little co-op, and you got my money, Bethesda!
Babylon’s Fall (Square Enix) – Square Enix’s conference proved to be a bore, considering that it proceeded on like a movie with trailers showing the highlights of each game. Square Enix did not have a good line up this year, only attracting some “wows” during Just Cause 4 and Shadow of the Tomb Raider, which look like slightly reskinned adaptations of their last respective games. A bit more difficult to say for Just Cause 4, considering the new weather simulations, which look pretty goddamn great, but may not have an effect on gameplay as much as people expect it to. Tomb Raider really needs to get its game up, considering that Shadow of the Tomb Raider looks worse than Rise of the Tomb Raider in a lot of ways, and the game mixes mechanics from both Tomb Raider and Rise of the Tomb Raider to look good. The one decent announcement, without details, was Babylon’s Fall – which was basically a timeline showing events happening in the story, but considering that Platinum Games is behind it, it is likely to be a hack-and-slash game with a decent story.
My Friend Pedro (Devolver Digital) – Devolver Digital’s conference is what people look forward to every year, considering that they manage to put up a decent show and keep the audience hooked for a while, however small the audience is in number. This year was no different – starting off with a high-pitched jokes about Battle Royale games which are quite abound in the industry by now, Devolver moved forward to announce quite a few titles in a manner worthy of a stand-up comedy. One game which particularly stood out among others was My Friend Pedro, a platformer with some decent physics simulation, and with real-time action gameplay. While the trailer doesn’t drop hints about a story, the game’s level design looks particularly awesome, and worth every penny.
Ghost of Tsuhima (Sony) – Sony had a really decent conference this year, and what they lacked in the number of announcements they made up in their quality. Every exclusive coming to the PlayStation 4 looks pretty decent (not like Sony did not have a lineup of fantastic exclusives already). But what particularly dropped quite a few jaws in the audience both seated in the hall as well as watching on their screens was the debut of Ghost of Tsuhima, an open world RPG. The game’s open world looks beautiful, and combat resembles the epic samurai battles depicted in books and in cinemas and animes. Japan’s foray into the gaming industry has resulted in a massive sway of public confidence towards Eastern titles as compared to Western titles with their diluted storylines and game mechanics, and Ghost of Tsuhima is living proof why. If anyone still doesn’t have a PlayStation 4, it’s safe to say it’s worth getting one for playing this game alone.
Fire Emblem : Three Houses (Nintendo) – For an upcoming giant that is trying to make themselves relevant in the market by capitalizing on the faults of other giants, who are trying to push “games as a service”, Nintendo’s conference was very lacklustre this year. Many people had expectations from their conference, which were dashed the moment viewers were treated to half an hour of how they were trying to make Super Smash Bros Ultimate a relevant esport by balancing out the characters and their moves. What seemed to be the only decent game was the new entry in the Fire Emblem franchise, Fire Emblem:Three Houses. People familiar with the franchise know the turn based combat and the anime style graphics of the series, which makes it famous. The new entry has new characters and a new story for the players to explore, and with certain modifications to existing mechanics will means that every battle needs strategic planning in advance.
Cyberpunk 2077 (Microsoft) – Microsoft’s conference was the best this year. Not only are they trying to improve the quality of Xbox One exclusives, they are also porting older games to the PC. A Windows 10 port of some of the older Halos is expected in the future. Moreover, Yakuza games coming to the PC! The equal focus on the Xbox and the PC was very well received by both console gamers and PC gamers alike – one of the rare moments of peace between the two communities. Making a choice here is pretty difficult. We Happy Few, Devil May Cry 5, Metro : Exodus, Ori : The Will of the Wisps, Dying Light 2 were all decent games. But the end of the Microsoft conference was the announcement people were waiting for. It’s the game that has been teased long ago, and managed to encase itself in a giant hype bubble and at E3 2018, everyone witnessed it before their very eyes. It’s none other than Cyberpunk 2077! CD Projekt Red, one of the champions of the gaming industry, delivering killing single player experiences for players, are back. This time, the trailer was much more concrete, and filled with a lot of hidden messages too! Cyberpunk 2077 is nearing completion, and players couldn’t be less excited. For all we know, it might dominate the gaming markets where a standard has been set by CD Projekt Red themselves with The Witcher 3 : Wild Hunt. And considering the theme and the game design, it was easy to decipher the look of eagerness on everyone’s face, as they wish to get their hands on some gameplay to feast their eyes on. But for now, all we have is a CGI trailer, and some details on the Cyberpunk game world which were revealed in interviews with the developers after the conferences as well as a behind-the-doors demo.
Satisfactory (PC Gaming Show) – Coming to a conclusion during the PC Gaming Show conference was a tough one too,since there were many reveals that are worth drooling on. PC is one of the most fertile grounds for developer creativity, and this was shown clearly during the PC Gaming Conference, where loads of decent games, including a large number of indies were showcased. Every player has a taste, and to satisfy everyone with something of their choice was what the PC Gaming Show conference stood for. What stood among the rest was Satisfactory, an indie game that seeks to put the player in the boots of a promising entrepreneur who seeks to make a living on a lonely resource-rich planet. The game’s concept is quite unique, and it allows coop gameplay too! Coffee Stain Studios are the curators of games with unique mechanics, and from what players have seen in the trailer and during the conference, Satisfactory can prove to be an unique experience, and a decent game worth picking up ,especially for those who always want to try something new.
These are only our choices about what game really stood out during each conference. If you agree, or disagree with our list, do let us know in the comments below. We do love to read intellectually thought out Twitch chat-esque comments.