E3 - Our hopes and dreams
It’s E3 time! That’s like Xmas for the gaming community but warmer. Last year we had a few reactions and put up a couple of posts on our blog about what we saw, and what got us excited. Well this year….we’re gonna do the same thing! So keep an eye out for that. But before we do i’ve had a brief run around and caught up with a couple of the guys and gals from the team at The Arcade Vaults to discuss what we want to see at the years biggest gaming show.
I guess I’ll go first?
To my utter dismay Sefton Hill, Game Director at Rocksteady games, confirmed last week that the team won't be at E3 this year. Which likely means that whatever the incredibly talented team over there are working, isn’t going to be making appearance. Which makes me sad. The long rumoured project form the team behind the Batman Arkham series’ has yet to be confirmed, let alone shown but the list of rumours for what they have in the pipeline is long and sees a pretty sizeable list of DC comic characters being bandied about. Early on there were whispers of properties like Superman as the team confirmed they would be moving away from their highly acclaimed time with The Dark Knight. This got a little confused when whispers of a team based property came along and suggestions rose that a Justice League game may be preparing to do battle with the impending Square Enix helmed The Avengers title (naturally the hype is at 11 for that one). More recent whispers seem to point towards a Suicide Squad game though, so perhaps In a few years time the horrible taste of the most recent movie, will have been washed away and replaced with some Arkham style brilliance. Honestly who knows.
What we do know is that Marvel will be there, and in force.The Square Enix helmed Marvel's The Avengers is being fronted by Crystal Dynamics along with Eidos Montreal the prior studio credited with the widely well received Tomb Raider and the latter seemingly picking up the lion's share of the workload on the more recent Shadow of the Tomb raider, as well as producing the successful Deus Ex reboots. Adam Jensen meet Tony Stark. Tony Stark, Adam Jensen.
The big Avengers title could be the start of superhero domination in the video game world, especially with the recent success of Spider-Man on the PS4, the impending return of Rocksteady studios (assuming they are choosing to stay the course on the superhero genre) and a potential return this year from Warner Bros Montreal who boast Batman Arkham Origins in their back catalogue whilst being rumoured to be in attendance this year with another Arkham entry. Let’s not forget we will be seeing more from Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 on the Switch as well.
I like Superheroes so this should be a blast.
Connor is sounding very excited for Super Mario Maker 2 which will release later this month and the Nintendo Direct sounds like the perfect place to give the game its last big push before the marketing parade going into launch. He pointed out what many did following the Nintendo Direct for Mario Maker 2 last month, that under the themes option during said Direct that Nintendo has a big empty space that looks ready for a new theme. Connor (SireDav on twitter) expressed a big want for some more 2 in his Mario Maker 2, grasping at a potential Super Mario Land 2 theme which echoes a lot of the online community while making the astute observation that a big empty slot with nothing in it is a very Nintendo thing to do. You’re not wrong sir.
A lot of the Nintendo Direct this year looks to be around the a titles already announced like Luigis Mansion 3 and co, as well as sizeable features on the two big Nintendo titles this year rain Mario Maker 2 and of course Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield, but with both (technically all 3 i suppose) of these title having had whole Nintendo Directs dedicated to them in the last couple of months it will be interesting to see what Nintendo chooses to do in terms of covering these games. Let’s not forget that the last three years have featured sizeable portions of the company’s E3 Nintendo Directs on The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
Then there are a couple of dark horses. Some kind of Metroid title to stem the flow as Metroid 4 re-enters development. Perhaps the release of the top secret title Retro (now heading up Metroid 4) were working on prior to their new assignment. Animal Crossing? If there’s no Animal Crossing. Twitter will break. Just...collapse. For the love of god show off Animal Crossing,.
The Microsoft conference is going to be an interesting one. No Playstation at this year's E3 primes Microsoft and Xbox to storm the show and while new hardware seems to be on the horizon the question of streaming services and project Xcloud will likely be high on the docket. Google have already run an almost pre-E3 style show announcing Baldur's Gate 3 and showing a new founders package which will include the Stadia controller, a Chromecast 4K and a slew of Destiny 2 content which will pair with a $9.99 monthly fee to use the service. Xbox may be going a similar route. Whatever this new face of gaming might be, Sarah seems...underwhelmed at best.
“I feel like everyone’s going to take a lot of time trying to get us hyped for what is, essentially, a new way of accessing stuff.”
She makes a good point. But while we know Microsoft and Xbox are digging their feet into Streaming and cloud based services for the future, at last years E3 one of the biggest stories from the Xbox conference was that they had spent time and we assume a reasonable sum of money acquiring a slate of new studios. This knowledge paired with Phil Spencer confirming they had over 14 new never before seen titles at the show promises some exciting games along with all the techy hardware and streaming lark.
Fable 4 has been thrown about as a potential player this year spearheaded by the team behind the Forza series’ and seeing another British game studio producing a high quality 1st party title for Xbox would be great. Leaks are of course inevitable this time of year and it seems like a new From Software title featuring work from George R R Martin, the man behind the Game of Thrones novel, may make an appearance as well.
It’s worth noting Sarah’s more sinister side told me she was excited to see some of the car crash presentations and games as well. She’ll be holding her breath for the successor to The Quietman. If you know you know. If you don't, look it up.
I’m sure we’ll get a few gaffs like that one Sarah i would worry too much.
“George Romero broke our Spectrum!”
Chris is very proud of that fact. If you were to assume then that he is a DOOM fan you would be correct. Much like the rest of us, hearing id Software would be relaunching DOOM a few years ago had him concerned. It had me concerned. Hell we all were. But what a game it was. The team managed to perfectly recapture that DOOM feel, and what we’ve seen of DOOM Eternal so far it looks like the incredibly talented team at id have done it again. Seeing more of that title can only be a good thing.
To slow the pace a little, one of the other big time returns needed this year for Chris and for many is that of Sam Fisher and the Splinter Cell series. It’s been awhile since we’ve been able to enjoy a Splinter Cell game with the last title arriving in that weird, between console window and never gaining any real traction, but a fresh and familiar revisiting of the series’ could be great for Ubisoft. We’re expecting and keeping our fingers crossed for a first look at a new Splinter Cell during the Xbox conference with a deeper dive at the Ubisoft presentation later in the week. Wherever he rears his head Sam Fisher is primed for a return, the Stealth Action genre really needs a new champion now that Snake and the Metal Gear series appears lost to time, and games like Assassins Creed have moved into a more Action RPG style over recent years.
We’ll be waiting for that coool ‘Pewm’ sound effect that happens when the night vision goggles turn on. Failing that…. Demon roars maybe?
That’s some of thoughts, ideas, hopes and dreams from The Arcade Vaults and Pals but there’s a whole bunch of other stuff we’ll be looking for. Sam and the Smash guys want to see more Smash DLC announced, and some of the weebs of the crew will be looking for news on the likes of a new (now leaked) Tales game, an update on Dragon Ball Project Z and hey! In a world where Spongebob Squarepans: Battle for Bikini Bottom is being remastered, why not demand some Simpsons Hit and run action. The list is endless and that’s why we love E3.
We’d love to hear from you guys about what you’re hoping for and looking forward to, so let us know and keep an eye on our social media channels as we try and keep everyone updated with the goings on over the next week.
E3 is fun! Have a good week everyone!