Events, Reviews

E3 2019 Overview

The press conferences are over and E3 2019 has drawn to a close. It’s been another week of the big publishers (except Sony) to show what’s coming to our PCs, consoles and mobile devices over the next year or so. Instead of doing a play by play of each Conference, we’ve decided to mix it up a bit this year and share our top moments and games of E3 and direct you where to head to watch the conferences if you haven’t had a chance to see them yet. So let’s get started!

Top Moments

Keanu Reeves in Cyberpunk 2077 – Lefranzine was hoping to see some gameplay of Cyberpunk during the Xbox Conference but after Keanu Reeves appeared on screen and then on stage, she was suddenly ok with not seeing any yet. Everyone went wild, Lefranzine was so happy and then there was the ‘Breathtaking’ moment which just stole the show. It certainly broke up the very trailer heavy conference and made everyone’s day. Plus Cyberpunk 2077 will release on 16th April 2020 and is a title that is definitely among the top games of the whole show!

Ikumi Nakamura showing off Ghostwire: Tokyo – Now the Bethesda conference felt a little flat but our hearts melted and smiles graced our faces when the lovely Ikumi Nakamura came onto stage and was simply adorable! She was so pleased to share the game trailer with us all and it was one of the highlights of the conference. While we don’t have a release date yet, it promises to be a supernatural action-adventure game when it arrives.

Bambam the dog featuring Jon Bernthal – We all love a dog and Bambam was just adorable. As Jon took to the stage with this lovely pooch to talk about Breakpoint, we couldn’t take our eyes off of Bambam as he talked about his experience being in the game. It was a sweet surprise that’s for sure and Breakpoint is shaping up to look pretty good which is good because you can play it from 4th October 2019.

Helen in Watch Dogs: Legion – Ubisoft opened their conference with some gameplay footage of Watch Dogs: Legion which is certainly looking interesting now you can switch between characters. But one character in particular had us all amazed and that was Helen, the butt kicking retired hacker who can taser bad guys and still squeeze in an afternoon nap. We do love Ubisoft’s sense of humour in their titles so it’s definitely made us want to give the next installment of Watch Dogs a shot when it releases on 6th March 2020.

Devolver Digital – now some people find the Devolver lot to be a little odd and weird… but their spot on the conference timetable is a firm favorite because it just does it’s own thing and this year it was taking the mick out of how other publishers present their games while also having a bit of fun and making it completely barmy. We’re big fans of the titles Devolver publish so if you have a spare half hour, go and check it out what’s coming up including My Friend Pedro which we will be sharing with you when it’s released. You can catch the presentation at the Twitch link at the end of this post!

Our Top Games

Deathloop – Arkane Studios – Lefranzine is a big fan of Arkane so this new title looks to be in her ball park. With two assassins, The Captain and Jules, attempting to kill each other throughout, you’ll be stuck in a loop in this mind-bending story. It won’t just be about killing each other though, there are other targets to hunt on this lawless island called Blackreef. We’re looking forward to seeing more of this game and hopefully they won’t keep us waiting too long.

Maneater – Tripwire – Technically this was announced last E3 but we have a new trailer. This is a shark RPG… you heard correctly. You start as a shark pup, you eat, you grow, you learn new skills, upgrade your shark-self and create carnage. Need we say more? This could be a lot of fun!

12 Minutes – Annapurna Interactive – The trailer alone made us want to play this game as soon as possible. An interactive thriller in which you are caught in a loop trying to change the outcome to break the cycle. We want it and we want it now! Check out the trailer below!

 

While Lefranzine has covered her “Top 5 Moments of E3”, I am going to focus on the games and present my Top 5 Games of E3. However I will split it up by genre/theme a bit, rather than just top 5 games.

Best Game We Already Knew About: Final Fantasy VII: Remake

So I’m going to start with this one, the best game that we already knew about but wanted to see more of. For this my pick has to be Final Fantasy VII: Remake, everything about it looks incredible, and, dare I say it, perfect. And the reviews from people who have had the chance to play it on the shop floor seem to echo this. From people, like me, who grew up with it and are saying it is just like they imagined it when playing the original 22 years ago; to the people who’ve never played a Final Fantasy game before, and are dipping their toes in with this one and are blown away by it.

FFVII:R wasn’t “new” at E3 2019, and technically the big news of the release date was dropped just before E3 – but this might just be the game of the show for me, and if not it is certainly right up there!

Honourable Mentions:

Link’s Awakening: by now you’ll know I’m a huge Zelda fan, and the original of this was a big part of road trips in my childhood, playing on the original Gameboy, with the magnifying light so I can see the screen in the dark. I love everything I’ve seen about this remake!

Borderlands 3: We already knew a great deal about the latest Borderlands game, but that doesn’t stop me being incredibly excited for it!

Game I Wanted to Learn More About Most: Jedi Fallen Order

In a similar vein to the previous category, but rather than sheer joy and excitement, more of a yearning for more details. And top of the list for me was Jedi Fallen Order. Star Wars is an IP that you can do great things with (or disappoint greatly with). And with Jedi Fallen Order being made by Respawn, my interest was piqued. If they intended to combine the excellent gameplay of Titanfall, the excellent storytelling of Titanfall 2 and then stir in the Star Wars IP there is potential for something wonderful, and the trailer was incredibly promising.

I love that some of the “generic” game mechanics are explained via Jedi stuff, the combat looks really fun and includes some fantastic combo opportunities. I can’t decide if my favourite thing is the Force Pull into Lightsabre through the chest, or slowing time and then Force Pushing Storm Troopers into in flight laser blasts… Also shout outs to the little droid backpack (named after the Titan from Titanfall 2!).

Honourable Mentions:

Pokemon Sword and Shield: While I enjoyed the Lets Go games, Sword and Shield are the “home console” games fans have been waiting for, and while there was a Pokemon Direct not long ago, I was always excited to see more of these new titles and knew that the Nintendo Treehouse streams wouldn’t disappoint.

CyberPunk 2077: Honestly I feel bad for not having this at the top of any of my lists, but it is most definitely worth a mention. The “CyberPunk” genre isn’t high on my list if I’m being honest, I’m much more of a High Fantasy kinda guy, but after seeing the Playsation Access interview with the guy who made the original table top RPG I was sold – plus as Lefranzine put – Keanu!

Baldur’s Gate 3: The interest in the table top RPG of CyberPunk, combined with my relatively new love of Dungeons and Dragons instantly mean I’ve got to be excited for Baldur’s Gate 3. I’ve not played 1 or 2, but I will definitely be playing 3!

Best Surprise:  Breath of the Wild Sequel

During the Square Enix presentation I honestly thought FFVIII had this one in the bag, but Nintendo stole it away. While everyone knew there was a new Legend of Zelda game in the pipeworks. I’m not sure many people would’ve guessed at there being a direct sequel to Breath of the Wild being made, let along ready to be teased at the end of their E3 Nintendo Direct. I might’ve gone as far as expecting more DLC, but a whole new game? Mind = BLOWN! It appears to be set in the same part of the world as BOTW, but a certain amount of time after the events of it, with what looks like a mummified Ganondorf!

Honourable Mentions:

Final Fantasy VIII Remastered: As mentioned above, this was a bit of a surprise to me. Seemingly not one of the more shouted about Final Fantasy titles (until it gets announced it would appear). But FFVIII was a very close second to FFVII for me growing up, albeit one I never completed because my final PS1 disk was corrupted… I’ll finally get to finish it on the Switch!

Elden Ring: What happens if you combine FromSoftware with George RR Martin? Elden Ring is what happens. A dark fantasy RPG based on a story by George RR Martin certainly piques my interest.

Age of Empires 2 Definitive Edition: I’m old enough that the first Age of Empires was my first online gaming experience, playing on my parent’s dial up connection. Age of Empires 2 was an awesome step up back then, seemingly adding bucket loads more to the first game. Being remastered in full 4K is going to be a blast!

Gods and Monsters: It is unsurprising that after Breath of the Wild there are “copycats” (for lack of a better term) starting to pop up, and most of them look great! Gods and Monsters could be no exception, the Assassin’s Creed Odyssey team combined with a beautiful looking high fantasy BOTW style game? Count me in!

Best Indie Game: Conan Chop Chop

This is going to be a fairly brief one from me, I often find that indie games don’t always stand out at E3, they’re often overshadowed by the excitement of the AAA announcements, and as such often get missed in the notes. But the standout one for me was during the PC Gaming showcase, a little title that started as an April fools joke, and through that excitement was turned into a real game. Conan Chop Chop. Cross the Conan universe, with CatQuest gameplay with stick art style graphics? YES PLEASE!

Game that I’m most surprised to be excited about: Luigi’s Mansion 3

This last category is the one you feel bad about initially, but have that heart warming comeback story. Games that I knew about, didn’t particularly care about, but having since watched their latest trailers/presentations I’m not officially curious/excited about.

The winner goes to Luigi’s Mansion 3. I’ve never played a Luigi’s Mansion game, nor really cared to go out of my way to rectify this. I’ve never had anything against them, and generally trust Nintendo to knock it out of the park for all of their first party titles. But watching the latest information on Luigi’s Mansion 3 during the Nintendo Direct made me think “You know what, I might have to get this”…

Honourable Mentions:

Lego Star Wars, The Skywalker Saga: I’ve never really played a Lego game, something I am ashamed to admit. They always look great, but due to lack of time and funds I have always forgone them. But if its ever a good time to change that, surely it is a game encompassing the entire Star Wars movie franchise…?

Tales of Arise: I love me a JRPG, its like a not so guilty pleasure of mine. But the problem with the JRPG genre, is that they just take so long to play, and I don’t have nearly enough time to game as it is. So I’ve never played a “Tales” game before, Tales of Arise might have to change that, it looks awesome!

Astral Chain: This is one of those titles that has been pops up in Nintendo Direct streams regularly, and I always go “Yeh, it looks alright, but not sure I’ll bother” – generally for time or financial reasons, so many games, such little time! But watching this trailer got me pretty hyped!

Honourable Mentions That Didn’t Fit Above

Bleeding Edge: Looks cool, but borderline concerned if it’ll go the way of Battleborn and die off too soon?

Gears 5: Always meant to pick up Gears 4 on PC, but always forgot to check out the Xbox Store… Will have to change that with 5!

Doom Eternal: Doom Games are always pretty and fun, it’ll look great on my PC!

Battletoads: Another classic remake that will no doubt be awesome!

There were so many games and trailers during the course of the E3 event that it can be a little hard to keep up but if you wanted to watch the conferences again, be sure to check out the full shows at the Twitch link below!

https://www.twitch.tv/collections/A7bWVK-uphW0JA

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