E3 2018 was ok
With E3 you never really know what you get. Major presenters will sometimes deliver out of the blue, or do the opposite and have not much to show at a time when it's highly expected. This year's iteration of the convention is no exception to this. Considering the little attention the Xbox brand is getting you'd almost think Microsoft were to drop out of the console business, and yet they had one of the stronger presentations this year. Which came as a real surprise to me because in my book they're usually the annual loser of E3. Their press conference presentation was all about games and no moment was wasted on entertainment apps, sports and silly performances. It was straight to the point with one trailer after another, including announcements for new Halo, Gears of War, lots of big multi-plat titles and even the first look on the new major From Software title. Sony on the other hand really blew it. They had no real stage presenters, and instead cut to a commentary panel in the midst of their presentation. The games they had to show were all known, no surprises, little gameplay and all cinema. To be honest watching this made me kind of ashamed of owning a PS4, so now I'll be thinking twice about what next-gen console to purchase in the future. Bethesda actually announced Star Field which was rumoured to be in development many moons ago. Too bad they focused entirely on the new Fallout game and only acknowledged that Star Field is a thing. I dream that it may be the big space exploration title the market is missing, but no doubt it will be another bad first person action RPG. One day I'll have to dig in my memory and write about the terrible experience I've had with Skyrim...
Devolver Digital did the same cringe-show they delivered last year, surprisingly announced a release of Metal Wolf Chaos and at least had some good satirical commentary amidst the cringe. Gotta admit I really enjoyed the bid on sham-retro consoles. Not much I can comment on EA because I don't really care for their games. Then Nintendo had the direct that's kind of inbetween of what Sony and Microsoft delivered. They showed a lot of gameplay, especially in their post-presentation Treehouse streams, some nice surprises, but not the big surprises and trailers that fans were expecting them to show off. There was no word on the new game Retro Studios has been working on for years, nothing new on Metroid Prime 4 and no word on the 3DS. Especially with the latter I was hoping for some surprises - a new mid-budget Zelda game, since we haven't heard of one for years and there was lots of rumors about a possible remake of Link's Awakening, or maybe even a new Golden Sun title (because people have been talking about the games so much it was kinda suspicous, and I believed it was all a shilling campaign to prepare people for a new anncouncement). Instead there wasn't even a word on the Luigi's mansion remake. At this point I woulnd't be surprised if all 3DS projects were canceled or moving over to the Switch. Still the few games they had material on all look great. Everyone knows Smash so the 40 minute segment dedicated to it in the direct was uncalled for.
Now here's what I think of some of the games that were announced:
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
Everone knew this was coming. I won't be not disappointed until Isaac is playable! Looks great though, I love that apparently almost all stages from previous games are in. Now that every past playable character is in I guess nobody can complain. Still, Smash 4 had lots of problems with items and stage hazards being completely overbearing, and this trend seems to continue... apparently you can turn off the latter now, but I like stages with small hazards that pop up here and there. Hazards in Smash 4 encompassed whole stages and popped up all the time - that shoulnd't be a thing at all and letting players turn it off instead of fixing it makes it look like the devs don't really understand where the issue lies. I expect more stages with ridiculous hazards, that can be turned off and made boring compared to classic stages with fun and sporadic hazards.
Sekirou: Shadow's die twice
Apparently From does action games now. So far there are supposed to be no RPG elements in this one. For now I'm just shrugging my shoulders on this title because I doubt that current From can pull off a proper straight action game. Especially with Activison behind the project I'm not having much hope for this being any good.
Ghost of Tsushima
Looks decent, but the english dub kind of defeated the point of a game heavily based on asian history, playing in asia with asian characters. I bet it's another cinematic "game" with simplified combat.
Capcom promises that "Capcom is BACK". I believe by that they refer to DMC4, which was already a considerable drop in quality from DMC3. Hard for me to get excited to be honest.
Resident Evil 2: Remake
I saw a trailer with no gameplay. The word on the internet seems to be that it's not as faithful to the original in terms of gameplay as the original's REmake. A real bummer, but I enjoyed RE7, so maybe the remake of 2 won't be entirely terrible. Speaking honestly the first REmake is my favorite in the series by a long shot, and it's kinda disheartening to think that the current project doesn't follow in its' legacy.
Tales of Vesperia: Definitive Edition
The enhanced PS3 port of the Xbox360 original is finally getting an english release! Cool for fans that don't know japanese. I played the game on PS3 so for me to be interesting this one should ideally have character models on par with Tales of Berseria, because I'm really tired of the chibi-esque models that Symphonia introduced. At least Versperia still looks alright, and I might get it on Switch for the novelty of getting to play it on a handheld.
I bet it's another shovelware game akin to J-Stars Victory VS. Yawn.
Quake Champions and Doom Eternal
Interesting announcements, I hope these deliver
This better be the multi trillion dollar budget space exploration game where I get to look at realistic black holes that require so much processing power to display it will be unplayable on 90% of PCs. Games like Elite don't interest me much because of their civilization sim aspects. There's a lot of potential for a pure space action game with today's tech, and I hope this will be it (or at least get close enough for me to be interested).
Normally not my cup of tea, both in terms of gameplay and setting. But I have a lot of respect for the "fuck DLC" part of the announcement and might get it just for that.
Literal kusoge, but I enjoy the drama caused by Sony prohibiting their players to also play on Switch. (laughs)
From all I read on Nioh it didn't interest me much. If this fixed the shit enemy variety and level design it might be more of interest to me.
That came out of nowhere. I had the game on SNES (and lost it) and liked that one a lot. Not a fan of the brand by a long shot, but thumbs up for the local co-op announcement.
Kingdom Hearts III
This comes way too late for me. Used to be a big fan of the franchise but lost interest over time. Gameplay of Kingdom Hearts II kinda sucked, so I'm holding out for opinions after the game releases.
Not a fan of the 'play according to your class' gimmick. The visuals strike me as a mix of "looks nice" and a terribly respectless way of treating pixel artwork, by which I mean I don't like how it mixes low res and high res assets, but it still looks nice so I might just get it anyways if my savings allow for it (with the Mega Man X Collections on the horizon I doubt it).
Daemon X Machina
My favorite surprise announcement of this E3. Looks great, but it's very early in development so who knows how it really turns out.
Mario Tennis Aces
This kept looking better with each presentation since they announced it. Looks like it's gonna be a blast to plau with friends.
Super Mario Party
This looks great, like the first Mario Party worth spending money on in years (finally!). They got rid of the stupid car gimmick and everyone is free to move across the boards individually, like it should be. How did Nintendo ever think this was a problem in the first place?
Xenoblade 2 DLC
My thoughts on this DLC before E3 were "There's no way I'm picking up a RPG I beat months ago for some stupid extra content, they should make a new game instead". Now it turns out they made a new game with assets from Xenoblade 2. To be honest I didn't like the story and characters from the main game enough to be interested in this prequel story and might skip it.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses
The little they showed of it looked extremely cheap, and I don't like that the title implies that they might pull off the same shit they did with the previous Fire Emblem game which was split into 3 individual games. This scam made me boycott Star Craft II and I haven't changed my mind on it.
Pokemon Let's Go Pikachu & Eevee
I used to be a big fan of the franchise, but the way the games kept getting more casual and kept forcing more and more pointless dialogue, tutorials and cutscenes on the player turned me off bigtime. These games seem even worse in some of those aspects, so I guess I'm out (again).