13 Reasons Why E3 2018 Will Be One For The Ages
E3 2018 is five weeks away. Before we’re covered in over a month worth of leaks, some of them false and some of them true, we wanted to shine the spotlight on the (main) thirteen reasons why we think this will be a major event – more so than the last couple years, at least.
Barring any major surprises, we don’t expect any new hardware to be revealed by the Big Three (Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo). After all, PlayStation 4 Pro launched in October 2016, the Nintendo Switch debuted in March 2017 and the Xbox One X in November 2017.
The focus will be squarely on games, then. And these won’t just be any games – no, these are massive projects led by some of the world’s most talented developers, more often than not with several studios working together to deliver something truly epic. This will also be the last batch of AAA games to focus on this console generation, trying to squeeze every ounce of power out of the machines, and history has shown that’s when developers can do their best work (2013’s The Last of Us and Grand Theft Auto V come to mind).
There’ll be a lot more to look for at E3 2018, mind you, but these were our picks as of today.
Cyberpunk 2077 Reveal
With the continued success of The Witcher III, CD Projekt RED’s reputation among gamers has never been higher. Needless to say, the hype for their next project is already sky-high and while Cyberpunk 2077 was announced too soon, E3 2018 might be the venue where we actually see the game running in real time and learn some concrete information about it. Several rumors point in this direction, not to mention CD Projekt’s own schedule to publish two AAA games by 2021.
If that’s still the case then one of those should probably launch by 2019, and the first candidate to do so is certainly Cyberpunk 2077 – the company’s most ambitious game yet, based on Mike Pondsmith’s tabletop game.
Starfield Reveal (and possibly release date announcement)
Few studios can match the hype of a project like Cyberpunk 2077. One of them is undoubtedly Bethesda Game Studios, the team behind Elder Scrolls and Fallout 3 & 4. This Fall, it will be three years since Fallout 4 hit shelves. With Bethesda Game Studios now featuring larger manpower than ever, the rumors regarding an E3 2018 unveiling of their new project have only intensified.
It won’t be Elder Scrolls VI, though, as the developers have clarified over and over again. Chances are it should be a brand new IP, possibly the fabled Sci-Fi themed Starfield, trademarked a good while ago. If Starfield is indeed announced during Bethesda’s Showcase event, we can also expect to learn a great deal about it and possibly even get a release date, per Bethesda’s successful ‘blitz marketing’ policy.
Death Stranding Gameplay Reveal
Announced two years ago on that very stage, Kojima’s game has already seen several trailers but not one of them gave fans a glimpse at the gameplay action. This may well change during Sony’s E3 2018 conference, as Kojima himself had promised the game would be out ‘before the year in which the movie Akira is set’. That year is 2019, so logic would dictate a 2018 release date; then again, this prediction was made in 2016 and there could have been a delay since.
Still, chances are we may soon understand a bit more about this star-studded project featuring the likes of Mads Mikkelsen and Norman Reedus, among others.
Shadows Die Twice and/or Armored Core Reveal
From Software earned its top-tier developer badge with Demon’s Souls and the Dark Souls series, spawning a whole new subgenre of action role-playing games. Now that they’ve moved on, at least for the time being, everyone is curious to see what they’ll do next.
They’ve previously confirmed a new Armored Game is in the works, so that’s something we could see at E3 2018. However, From Software fans are most eager to learn more about Shadows Die Twice, the new game that was briefly teased at The Game Awards 2017. At least one of these project should be on stage, if not both.
Metroid Prime 4 Reveal
With the Nintendo Switch selling like hotcakes, there are lots of players waiting to get a brand new installment of Nintendo’s premiere Sci-Fi first-person action/adventure franchise.
The existence of Metroid Prime 4 was unveiled at last year’s E3 with the official logo (above). One year later it should be time to see the game in action, though the release could be due for next year. Details are scarce, to say the least, though Nintendo mentioned a new team is leading development on this one and rumors have since suggested that Bandai Namco could be involved.
Final Fantasy VII Remake Re-Reveal
Perhaps the most iconic game amidst all of the original PlayStation’s massive library, Final Fantasy VII remains to this day in the memories of millions of gamers, the same ones who cheered wildly when Square Enix announced Final Fantasy VII Remake during the PlayStation Experience 2015.
The debut came with a bang thanks to a brief but juicy gameplay video, showcasing the remake’s real-time combat system. However, for a long while, the developers went silent and left fans wondering what was happening. The game’s development initially called for a significant portion of outsourcing, mostly through CyberConnect 2, but last year we learned that Square Enix had decided to shift focus and make it primarily an internally developed project.
The game’s launch date is likely to be still a year away or more, however it’s reasonable to expect something new to be showcased throughout the ‘convention season’, which starts with E3. After all, main character Cloud Strife apparently received a redesign from the debut trailer and fans are eagerly awaiting the chances to see his new appearance.
Anthem In-Depth Reveal
Bioware’s first new IP in almost a decade (Dragon Age came out in 2009), Anthem was revealed to the world with a brief gameplay reveal at E3 2017 and immediately deemed one of the most impressive demos shown at the event.
However, Star Wars Battlefront II’s loot box fiasco has since considerably dampened the enthusiasm surrounding the game, regardless of EA’s promises that no such mistakes will be repeated in the future. It doesn’t help that Bioware’s latest game (Mass Effect Andromeda) turned out to be the most underwhelming the studio released in a very long time, though to be fair the title’s development was handled mostly by the inexperienced Bioware Montréal studio (now merged with Motive Studios).
Anthem, on the other hand, is being developed by Edmonton’s folks and some of them have been with Bioware for a decade or more. Moreover, the studio is going all in (with the help of Electronic Arts) with this game and we expect to learn a great deal of new information during EA’s Showcase, considering that it should be Anthem’s last E3 (its release window is pinned for early 2019).
Borderlands 3 Reveal
Gearbox’s golden goose is coming back, that much we know for sure. CEO Randy Pitchford didn’t really try to deny it and during last year’s GDC, he even showcased new engine technology for the next Borderlands title.
Granted, Pitchford also confirmed a while ago that a new Brothers in Arms game is under production. Still, Borderlands is the studio’s best-selling franchise by far and it’s already been four years since The Pre-Sequel launched. It’s also widely believed that Take Two’s ‘highly anticipated new title in one of 2K’s biggest franchises’ mentioned in the company’s earnings call could be Borderlands 3. If that’s the case, the game could launch between October 2018 and Fall 2019 and a reveal during next month’s E3 would make perfect sense.
Resident Evil 2 Remake Reveal
The second remake of a beloved PlayStation era title, Resident Evil 2’s overhaul project was announced by CAPCOM in August 2015.
Since then we haven’t seen or heard a peep, with the exception of programmer Hiroyuki Kobayashi’s statement from June 2017 that Resident Evil 2 remake would be out ‘soon’. Clearly, the definition of soon is highly subjective. It’s about time we learned more about this, anyway. As usual with CAPCOM games, we’d give it a fifty-fifty chance of being revealed at E3 or TGS.
With Avengers: Infinity War set to become the fastest movie ever to hit $1 billion gross at the global box office (possibly later today), the thirst for a videogame based on Marvel’s Dream Team of superheroes has never been stronger. Marvel Games partnered with Crystal Dynamics for this project, with publisher Square Enix investing a significant amount of resources as well as hiring top-tier developers.
The very press release announcement mentioned that we would learn more about The Avengers project in 2018. So far, though, we’ve had absolutely nothing, but E3 2018 could change that.
A release this year is unlikely. Still, the developers could try to ride the massive hype wave and target a May 2019 launch window to coincide with Avengers 4.
Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 Reveal
Ubisoft Massive’s Tom Clancy’s The Division briefly held the record for the biggest new franchise launch in the entire industry. This figure alone proves how successful the game was.
While its population dwindled between the latter part of 2016 and the first half of 2017, a series of updates brought back lots of players and now most of the community swears the game has never been as good as it is with the latest update (1.8).
Ironically, that’s about when Ubisoft Massive revealed the existence of Tom Clancy’s The Division 2, a sequel that’s due to be fully revealed at E3 2018. There’s no release date yet, but March 2019 would put it exactly three years after the first game’s debut.
Shenmue III In-Depth Reveal
To this day, the third chapter of Shenmue holds the record for the biggest Kickstarter campaign for a game with $6,333,295 in pledges provided by the myriad fans of Ryo Hazuki.
YS Net then signed a deal with Deep Silver to get additional funds and publish the game. To this date, the release window is still planned for late 2018 on PC and PlayStation 4. If that’s really the case then we should definitely get an in-depth gameplay reveal of the systems and features at this year’s E3, which would be the closing of a circle considering the Kickstarter campaign was announced on stage during Sony’s E3 2015 press conference.
New Games by Rocksteady, Remedy and CAPCOM (Itsuno’s)
We’ve grouped these together as we know next to nothing about them and they’re all coming from developers whose pedigree is unquestionable.
We’ve got confirmation this week that Remedy’s new P7 project will indeed be revealed at E3 2018, so that’s one down. P7 is also the game we know more about – it’ll be a cinematic action game played in third person view, but it’s also going to try and push the longevity much further than Remedy’s previous titles (Quantum Break, Alan Wake).
Rocksteady’s new game is a bigger mystery. The team based in Kentish Town garnered its own fanbase thanks to the Batman Arkham trilogy and now they’ve expressed the desire to move onto something else, similarly to From Software. However, we don’t really know what they’re working on. Several rumors have pointed to a Superman game, but it’s hard to assess their validity. Still, it’s been three years since the launch of Batman Arkham Knight. It’s about time we learned something and E3 could be perfect venue do it.
Last but not least, CAPCOM’s esteemed game designer Hideaki Itsuno said earlier this year that his new title’s development was under climax. Fans believe that Itsuno-san is probably working on Devil May Cry V or Dragon’s Dogma 2; whichever of those two is actually being developed could finally be publicly revealed at E3 2018. It’s likely either Itsuno’s game or the aforementioned Resident Evil 2 remake will be revealed in Los Angeles, with the other project possibly being unveiled during Tokyo Game Show later this year.
These were our choices – let us know about yours in the comments!