E3 2016 is here and everything is coming at you from all directions. Tweets here, leaks there and a big old bunch of trailers. So, here’s a handy place to show you everything we know and have seen.
EA’s new showcase event, simulcast from LA and London, took a different approach than most, giving a short show but hands on time for everyone there to tell you what everyone actually thinks of the games on display, which were Madden 17, FIFA 17, Titanfall 2 and Battlefield 1.
It’s back and the focus this year seemed to be on the competitions created around the game with EA starting a year long eSports tournament with a prize of $1million.
This is the game that has had the most changed with the introduction of the Frostbite engine, replacing the EA Sports faithful Ignite engine (which Madden is still running on). The biggest changes are the introduction of fully animated and real Premier League managers in the game and a new career mode, called The Journey. Similar to the 2K style of career mode, you start as young footballer Alex Hunter at whatever club you choose and work your way through the tribulations of a burgeoning football career. The game promises overhauled AI and a more physical style of play.
Titanfall is back and this time, there will be a single player campaign, not just a story mode attached to some multiplayer. It tells the story of a Mech that attaches itself to a new pilot after his original pilot was killed in action. There’s also more awesome looking multiplayer too with new maps, new skills and a lot of jumps and explosions.
DICE return to Battlefield and to a early 20th Century setting with this alt-history look at World War 1. Big team battles and huge destroyed landscapes beckon. There’s also new modes including the Operations mode that joins maps together so that teams can fall back to an entirely different area if overrun to regroup, in an attempt to echo the scale of the historical conflict.
Mass Effect Andromeda
No gameplay yet for the new Bioware Space RPG but there is a nice behind the scenes Dev Diary that shows off a bit of what the Frostbite engine is doing here.
After the success of Unravel last year, EA have launched a new Indie Label called EA Originals which will give 100% of the profits from a game back to the developer in order to help studio development. Sounds like a good idea, really. The first game we saw was Fe, a puzzle platformer about a fox from a small Gothenburg based studio.
There’s a lot happening in the Star Wars game universe. There’s a new Battlefront due in 2017, there’s DLC support for the original Battlefront until then as well, which will include content from the new movies and is being co-developed by Motion (you do see a slimpse of PS VR in there). We got a brief glimpse at the Visceral studio’s Star Wars effort, a third person game with new characters outside of our established movie lore. There’s also more to come from MMORPG The Old Republic by Bioware and a neat look at some lightsabre battle motion capturing by Titanfall developer Respawn Entertainment.
This was the conference with the most rumours around it for games and it didn’t disappoint. There were also announcements for Doom DLC and a look back at how far the Elder Scrolls Online has come since launch. Videos included without the screaming mega-fan. There’s no video for it but Bethesda also announced Bethesda VR, a new way to enjoy your favourite Bethesda games with Doom and Fallout 4 confirmed to be coming with HTC Vive support in 2017… Interesting.
Not only is Quake returning, but it’s staying with its trusted fast-paced, multiplayer arena battles that it was always known for. It’s also being done by iD Software, the original developers who just had a smashing return with Doom.
The Elder Scrolls: Legends
The on and offline strategy card game from Bethesda (the one they were annoyed about when Mojang made Scrolls) is currently in closed beta but if you’re signed up to Bethesda.net then you have a chance to get involved as more beta space is coming. Also the game will be coming on to Mac, iOS and Android later in the year. Here’s the first cinematic from the single player campaign.
Bethesda Game Studios
There’s more coming from the Fallout and Elder Scrolls developer. We have three new DLC packs for Fallout 4: The Contraptions workshop pack which is coming next week (mid June), the Vault Tec workshop pack which is coming July 2016 and the Nuka Park area DLC set in a Nuka Cola theme park in August 2016. Fallout Shelter is coming for PC too and is getting a big update. Then there’s the remaster of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. The special edition boasts a total remaster of textures, lighting, assets and will include mod support on consoles, and is due for release on October 28th on PC, PS4 and Xbox One.
This game has been rumoured for a good few months, but it has finally come to fruition. Bethesda brought the Prey I.P. from 2K back in 2009 and after much trouble, it’s finally getting a reboot, not a sequel. You take on the role of Morgan (not GameSpot’s Dave Jewitt, although there’s a resemblance), who looks like a unwilling test subject, in a game that looks like a wonderful cross between Bioshock and Dead Space. Oh, it’s also being developed by the new branch of Arkane Studios, the Dishonored developer. Excellent.
During the full conference we got a big section of gameplay as you take on the role of either Empress Emily Kaldwin, or original character Royal Protector Corvo Attano, in a new, more Mediterranean like area of Karnaca, although Dunwall will feature. The game looks absolutely incredible and Emily will have a whole new set of powers separate from Corvo. It has also been developed in a totally bespoke game engine called “Void Engine” and it looks beautiful. The game is due on 11th November 2016 on Xbox One, PS4 and PC and if you pre-order, for a limited time you can get the Definitive Edition of the first game free. Here’s a wonderful gameplay trailer with a cover of Fleetwood Mac’s Silver Springs.
The answers are finally here. What are the new Xbox consoles, what t-shirt was Phil Spencer wearing, how accurate were the leaks? Well, let’s find out. All videos here are from Xbox or from Eurogamer or MKFireandIce on YouTube.
Xbox One S
Now officially announced, the leak of the Xbox One S appears to be spot on. The new console will be 40% smaller whilst incorporating the power block, include a vertical stand (this is a big deal, really), 4K Video output on video and Blu Ray, High Dynamic Range for gaming, a 2TB hard drive, a new controller that looks a little tidier and smaller, it’s all in white with a different vent hole pattern, an IR Blaster (answers on a postcard) and finally a USB port on the front. It will be $299 and be available from August.
Xbox Game Anywhere
Further to this is the announcement of Xbox Game Anywhere, where new games announced on Xbox will be playable on Windows 10 PC at NO ADDITIONAL COST and will also have cross-play. This is happening across all future exclusive Microsoft titles so all of them will be available on all where the symbol is seen.
Gears of War 4
Gears 4 will be the first game to benefit from Game Anywhere, as well as the added HDR gaming quality. Meaning games will be designed with that in mind. Gears of War 4 will have multiplayer co-op cross play between the Xbox and Windows 10 platforms for both campaign and the Horde mode. From the footage of this demo, the environments look hectic and tense with wind and particles. And Marcus Fenix with hair. Here’s some gameplay captured by Eurogamer.
Gears also has a custom wireless Elite Controller that looks like you have picked it up in a trampled mess from a war torn floor. Here’s a little look.
If that doesn’t take your fancy, Xbox also announced a new standard controller.
Killer Instinct Season 3
New characters are ahoy for Season 3 of Killer Instinct, with Gears of War’s General Ramm. It will also be cross play between Xbox One and Windows 10.
Forza Horizon 3
As predicted, Forza Horizon 3 will be taking place in Australia, with a wonderful mix of roads, city, desert, rainforest, beach and the outback. There’s kit customisation, new Lamborghini’s and of course cross play between Xbox One, Xbox One S and Windows 10 PC. It’s the largest car roster out of any game and it has 4 player Co-Op campaign with worlds synchronising to the host. It’s coming on 27th September and, as a Forza Horizon fan, I cannot wait. Enjoy the video and a cover of Chris Isaak’s Wicked Game.
Another exclusive title announced last year, we finally see some gameplay. ReCore is a third person shooter with multiple characters on the planet of Far Eden. There’s the leader, Joule, a Mech Dog called Mack, a spider like surface climber called Seth and a big tank called Duncan. This game looks part shooter, part platformer and will be out Septermber 13th
Final Fantasy XV
We got a demonstration of the newest addition to the Final Fantasy series, which will be released on 30th September. Again, here’s some footage from Eurogamer.
The Division: Underground
We have our first look not at DLC for Ubisoft’s The Division. The Underground Expansion is coming to June 28th to Xbox One as a timed exclusive and here’s the trailer for you.
We had a little recap of what Xbox Live has done in the past year, it’s now available on PC, Xbox, iOS and Android in the guise of the formerly titled Xbox SmartGlass app. Now we get background music capabilities, Language localisation and Cortana usage across all platforms. There are also Clubs for people to group together and the “Looking for Group” apps which will be a way to get people to find players to play a game or do specific things. There’s also the Arena that will allow people to compete in tournaments, against each other and in sponsored competitions.
We got to see a bit more about Minecraft’s cross play ability. With realms, you can play regardless of platform together with a demonstration using an Apple iPad, a Microsoft Surface and a Samsung Gear VR (demonstrated by Oculous’s John Carmack no less). There’s also add-ons and texture packs coming to the Pocket and Windows 10 editions of the game later in the year. You can try Realms for free now, regardless of platform.
We get a sneak peek at Playdead Studios new game Inside, and the announcement that Limbo, the studio’s most famous title, is now free on Xbox One. But we also get a look at a load of new games which include Cuphead, Slime Rancher, The Culling, Everspace which are all available on the Xbox Game Anywhere program. Also included (breaths in) is Outlast 2, Deliver Us The Moon, Flint Hook, Far, Shadow Tactics, Figment, For the King, Beacon, Stardew Valley, Hand of Fate 2, Below, Raiders of the Broken Planet, Bloodstained and Yooka-Laylee… (breathes out). Footage again thanks to Eurogamer.
We Happy Few
This title from Compulsion Games was given a long space on its own and looks like the creepiest mix of Orwellian propaganda dystopia and creepy Bioshock-esque masquerade faces and some Philip K Dick/Balladian insanity. It’s coming first to Xbox Game Preview on July 26th. It’s looks crazy and I think I love it.
CD Project Red have turned Gwent in to a “full blown game experience” with a single player campaign and cross platform between PC and consoles. Apparently we all played a lot of Gwent in The Witcher 3. It’s had a bit of a redesign and a re-imaging compared to the in-game version but it’s essentially the same. Thanks to Eurogamer, here’s CD Projekt Red talking about it.
Bandai Namco are bringing back Tekken Western consoles, although the game has been out in Japanese arcades for a while. It’s due to come early of 2017 and looks very colourful and has a new storymode that flips between cinematics and gameplay seamlessly. Xbox Live Gold will have Tekken Tag Tournament 2 for free via Backward Compatability for this E3 week.
Dead Rising 4
It’s Christmas in the mall as Frank returns to kill many zombies. Highlights include a candy cane cross bow, a mech suit and a big boulder on a stick. The game will be coming Holiday 2016 (Christmas to the rest of us) and will be on Xbox One and Windows 10.
More gameplay demonstrations now as Platinum Games take to the stage to show us some co-op gameplay in the delayed title, Scalebound which will becoming exclusively on Xbox One and Windows 10 in 2017, but no fixed date yet.
Sea of Thieves
Rare return with a cinematic trailer for their Sea of Thieves game which seems to channel the humour they are best known for, before showing some gameplay. It will also be a Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive and a co-op game with “emergent” aspects. The footage was captured from Rare inviting their “Sea of Theives Community to be the first to play the game.” Can a community even exist for a game that’s only been announced and nothing else? That’s a whole difference discussion. There’s some sailing, grog drinking, landing on islands and, cannon ball fights. It looks like a lot of fun.
State of Decay 2
ANOTHER Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive, State of Decay 2 is introduced with a cinematic trailer that shows off an open world feel and driving around in cars. No gameplay or date yet, just an announcement.
Halo Wars 2
A deadly new faction of Coveneant called the Banished are stumbled upon by the Spirit of Fire crew. Developed with Creative Assembly it will be out Feburary 21st on Windows 10 and Xbox One, also with Play Anywhere. The Beta is live during E3 week and can be downloaded now from your Xbox. Have a cinematic and multiplayer trailer.
Here we go then. 4K Gaming with a huge GPU that developers and you, the internet commentaries and reviewers wanted. Built to support 4K and VR, and with an eye on cross play and games being playable on all of the Xbox family of consoles. 8 CPU Cores, 6 Terraflops of GPU Power. It’s the next step and will launch in 2017, promising to be the most powerful console ever built.
Ubisoft had their traditional anti-tradition conference. Swears, fan service and sarcasm galore, it never fails to deliver a laugh, even if the games do the same. This time we seem to be alright, except for the mass of dress up dancers, human giraffes and other crazy costumes on stage. Which leads us straight on to…
Just Dance 2017
Not much to say about this really. The game will be available on all platforms and PC from October and Nintendo NX in 2017.
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands posits a fictional history of Bolivia where a drug cartel have effectively taken over the country and turned it in to a massive cocaine production factory. You’ll be playing as special operatives sent in to disrupt this. It’s the largest open world that Ubisoft have ever done apparently and has four separate environments and changing conditions. The game is due 7th March 2017. Here’s a cinematic and extended Gameplay trailer with traditional scripted voices.
South Park: The Fractured But Whole
Trey Parker and Matt Stone have come to town to tell us about their sequal to The Stick of Truth. From being the new kid, Douchbag, playing Game of Thrones/Lord of the Rings, to being more grown up and playing as superheroes with the Coon. Your status as “The King” has changed and now you must start over to win your friends affection back as the new kid… Douchebag. Then you can start a comic book movie franchise and make millions of dollars. Combat has now changed so that you aren’t in a fixed position and can move around the space. Think Banner Saga. Your fart power can now change time, so you can change what’s happening in a battle. Also anyone who buys the game will get The Stick of Truth for free at release on 6th December, or if you pre order, you can get the first game now. Here’s a trailer.
The Division: DLC
The Underground was already announced during the Xbox conference. To celebrate the 30th Ubisoft anniversary, there’s exclusive Ghost Recon, Splinter Cell and Rainbow Six outfits when Underground comes out, as long as you’re part of the Ubisoft Club. Underground takes you, well, underground for new missions and loot. That is coming on June 28th for Xbox One and PC with PS4 coming thirty days later, so late July.
Then the next DLC pack, Survival shows us a supplied strapped and blizzard ridden New York struggles to find a cure, food or water. The storm being a central focus of the problems at this stage of the virus event. No release date yet for this one.
VR time now as the founders and developers at Oculus show us Eagle Flight, showing us the “first ever VR PvP”. We see a capture the flag style game with the eagles flying around an overgrown Paris with buildings, reclaimed nature and animals everywhere. You carry a rabbit to the nests (flag to the base) and avoid being shot as you do it. You get boosts of speed with thermal wind pockets. It’s kind of realistic to the point where your eagle can shoot other eagles exactly like they can’t in reality. It’s coming to all VR platforms this fall.
Star Trek Bridge Crew
Well… My god. It’s time to boldly go where VR has not gone before. A four player co-op bridge experiences with fully working consoles and everyone with a specific role like Engineer, Helm, Captain and Tactical. You’ll explore new worlds, get in fights and have the intensity of sharing an experience of being a part of a Starfleet ship crew. It’s a fully rendered Bridge based on the new Star Trek movie universe (I can’t imagine for a moment there won’t be more on a DLC or something) and the Star Trek nerd in me is a holodeck Sherlock Holmes adventure away from dying happy. The game will be coming out this fall on all major VR systems… Does that mean PSVR too?
A game that’s been around for a while, For Honor is millennium long battle of war against different factions throughout history. Apollian, the antagonist breeds war against everything and everyone. We were treated to everyone’s favourite cane toting viking, Jason Vanderberghe talking us through the lore of the game. It looks like a cross between Ryse and Dynasty Warriors… But that’s totally cool. You’ll be able to store it in your scabbard on 14th February 2017 on PS4, Xbox One and PC. There is an upcoming alpha that you can sign up for too over at their website.
Of course, we also get a gameplay video too.
A sequel to what was admittedly an experimental game about a wobbly red robot named Bud. This time, you get to leave Mum, and go around the entire globe. You can even bounce to the moon by planting and growing seeds. Grow Up is coming this August on PC, PS4 and Xbox One.
Trials of the Blood Dragon
To quote “Trials make baby with Blood Dragon” and that’s exactly what this is. Trials with the veneer of 80s insanity and child action excess. Oh and it’s out right now on PC, Xbox One and PS4. No need to wait. Go, go now. If you want I mean. You are your own person after all.
We’ve seen a lot about Watch_Dogs 2 already thanks to last week’s leaks. You join Dedsec as actor Marcus Holloway, traversing the San Francisco Bay area, with a lot of hackable things, including cars, pranking people, flying drones and having an easier time finding co-op games. I don’t even care at this point because he’s 1000% better than Aiden Pearce and your character can look up. Although screw this guy with his emoticon mask. You’ve seen a lot already but here’s the E3 gameplay. Watch_Dogs 2 will be Playstation Exclusive for DLC for thirty days. Oh and there’s a movie in the works too from Regency and Sony (Regency have also done the Assassin’s Creed movie).
A new game and a new property. Steep is a game that has a partially open world Alps (between Italy, Austria and Switzerland) that is designed as a giant extreme sports sandbox. Skiing, base jumping, snowboarding, hand gliding, you name it. The studio is based practically next to the mountains and the game seems to be based around that with challenges, competitions and skills to get combos, bonuses and just incredible views. Seriously, Mountain view shows everything zoomed out to see different drop zones for events. You also have replays, timed challenges and online play as well as solo. Mountains, snow, trees, beautiful scenery… I’m in. There’s also a public beta coming on PS4, Xbox One and PC. Here’s the announcement and gameplay trailers.
Right, this is it, the big one. No news on new consoles but Sony have got a massive library of stuff to get off their shelves and a show with a full orchestra conducted by Bear McCreary of Battlestar Galactica and Walking Dead fame is the only way to do it.
God of War
Not God of War 4, but straight up “God of War”. This reboot(?) looks to show Kratos as a father teaching a son to get by in a single parent situation. It obviously owes a great deal to The Last of Us at times or Worf and his son from Star Trek The Next Generation. But it looks stunning and we got a full gameplay trailer.
The Last Guardian
We’ve already seen some stuff last year and we expected to see more again. We did. And we got a release date. A RELEASE DATE! That leaves Half Life 3 as the only game in development purgatory now, surely? The game will be out on 25th October 2016
Horizon Zero Dawn
Sadly the game has been delayed until 2017, which was something we were all expecting given the lack of news about it. What we got though was a long gameplay trailer (seems to be the theme of this conference – gameplay) in this weird low/high tech world reminiscent of Far Cry’s exploration style.
Detroit: Become Human
David Cage’s tale of androids living in a human society seemed to be a Philip K Dick inspired piece on civil rights and a revolution of the oppressed. Now it appears to be a detective game. Either way it looks interesting in the multiple choice “press-x-to-[action]” kind of way.
A new game by Bend Studios that seems to be a biker/zombie apocalpyse game. In more than a oblique nod to Sons of Anarchy, The Walking Dead and World War Z, we see a lonely, moody James Franco type traversing the deserted world on his chopper and fending off rather quick and large hordes of zombies whilst pining for a former love.
We also got some gameplay too!
Resident Evil 7
We’re getting in to VR territory now as Capcom’s Kitchen VR demo was very obviously a test of the power of VR. Resident Evil 7 looks to be a departure of the action adventures past and a leap in to the terrifying psychological future with the game fully playable as normal or in VR. The demo is live on PSN right now.
A VR game that looks like a cross between Pitch Black and Starship Troopers, you explore a new planet with only a gun and disaster befalls your only means of escape as a ship crashes and burns, forcing you to survive against hostile elements. Looks interesting.
Batman: Arkham VR
Just an announcement of a game rather than anything substantial but worth it just to hear Mark Hamill’s Joker one more time. It’s also being developed by Rocksteady so at least we know the world will be fantastic.
Final Fantasy XV & VR
Obviously a lot more will come about Final Fantasy during the Square Enix conference, and we’ve already seen gameplay during the Xbox breifing. But we also got a VR game, which looks to be a combat based boss battle game. Interesting stuff if not wholly clear on exactly what’s playable.
Call of Duty Infinite Warfare
As we came out of the VR section we got this rather excellent space battle sequence thanks to Call of Duty, although it wasn’t revealed to the end, and we saw some more of the Modern Warfare Remaster. But no one said it wasn’t VR, presumably as a Red Herring to make us talk and wonder if parts of it were. Either way, Infinity Ward are still the masters of the set piece.
Crash Bandicoot Remastered
So, for some reason, everyone loves Crash Bandicoot. It’s dripping in PlayStation nostalgia and because of the working relationship between rights holders Activision and Sony, you’re going to get Crash Bandicoot 1, 2 and Warped remastered in HD. There’s also a Crash Skylanders tyo for the upcoming release in that series too, Imaginators.
Insomniac Games created a great world with Sunset Overdrive, even if the content was a little loud and empty. Combine that with Spiderman however and magic happens.
So Hideo Kojima popped out. Not a surprise. He showed us a trailer… A definte surprise. And it had Norman Reedus (Darryl of The Walking Dead) totally naked and in some kind of weird black oily beach with a baby… Or not. SO MANY QUESTIONS! (Video from IGN)