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E3 News: Death Stranding, Smash Bros., Fortnite, and...Mass Effect?

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This article recounts conferences, events, and announcements from Monday and Tuesday during E3 2018. This includes PC game announcements and more trailers from already previously announced games such as Kingdom Hearts III and The Division 2.

E3 gave us Square Enix, Ubisoft, PC games, and Nintendo conferences this week.

Not only did we get information on Pokemon Let’s Go iterations and Smash Bros., we also got another totally weird trailer for Death Stranding.

Developers also confirmed the Fortnite port to the Nintendo Switch. You can download it right now, in fact, from Nintendo’s website. It is also crossplay enabled, but not for PlayStation 4 gamers, unfortunately.

A Bioware producer even broke the silence on the fate of the Mass Effect universe.

Keep reading for everything you might have missed over the last two days of E3.

Naughtydog Seeks to Gain Fans With TLOU 2 Trailer

Little Ellie is all grown up in the latest look at The Last of Us Part II.

The studio came under fire for allegations of sexual harassment by a former employee. But that hasn’t halted the studio’s production schedule.

Known for the Uncharted series, the studio also found a huge hit in The Last of Us — a zombie survival game following Joel and Ellie. Both the Uncharted series and this series are Playstation exclusives alongside Horizon Zero Dawn and God of War.

The sequel picks up what seems like several years after the events of the first game and its DLC. Ellie is older, a deadly combatant, and a little more social than last time.

The trailer features Ellie executing some pretty brutal takedowns in the gloriously foggy and fern-covered environment. Joel is still around, but we don’t know in what capacity.

After five years since the original game, we still don’t have a real release date for the sequel. But if the trailer is anything to go by, it’ll be worth the wait.

Smashing Success RPG Gets Console Release Date

This is one of my all-time favorite games that I’ve ever played.

Larian Studios released Divinity: Original Sin 2 in 2017 to massive success. It was many people’s game of the year (including mine). The game is even built in an entirely custom and proprietary engine.

In fact, players can download the Divinity Engine in order to make mods.

The game operates as a traditional RPG with Diablo style dungeon crawls and other exploration elements.

You can create your own unique character or play as one of the eight story characters in a party up to four people. It is also co-op, but there’s no crossplay that we know of yet.

You can get your hands on this one-of-a-kind game in August 2018 for XBox One and PS4.

The Only ShaRkPG You’ll Ever Need in Your Library

Have you ever wanted to embody a shark and attack things?

While this isn’t the first game to give you this experience, Killing Floor studio Tripwire Interactive has a certain panache that other studios can’t provide. They paired with Blindside Interactive to deliver this new game.

The trailer for Maneater displays Jaws-like action in what seems like an open world.

Alex Quick, Blindside Interactive creative director, told PCGamer that this was originally intended to be an expansion pack for the game Depth. They took inspiration from Jaws Unleashed, as well as action RPGs like Dishonored and the Deus Ex series.

“Eat. Grow. Evolve.” is the game’s slogan with evolution options like changing teeth type at will, growing serrated scales, and opting for shallower, faster bites or deeper wounds at less efficient bite times.

For now, the game is just “coming soon” to PC with no word on consoles.

E3 Gave us not one, but TWO Battle Royale Games

You might recognize the art style in the trailer above from the comic Cyanide and Happiness. That’s because this battle royale game is based on it!

Galvanic Games collaborated with Explosm for the project and it seems really irreverent and goofy. You can sign up for the beta at their website right now.

But that’s not the only battle royale game E3 gave us. No, we also got Mavericks Proving Grounds with not 100 players on each map….but 1,000 players.

1,000 people. This is ridiculous.

But the game will also feature MMORPG style social hubs kind of like Destiny’s Tower location. But there will be tons of enemies, too, on top of the player count.

Instead of just focusing on death, the game focuses also on survival. You can squad-up in teams of five and explore the sandbox with footprint tracking, as well.

Could this be a Fortnite and PUBG killer? You’ll have to sign up for the closed beta to find out.

Space Opera Beyond Good & Evil 2 Gets a new Trailer

You might remember the original game Beyond Good & Evil from a long time ago. It came out for PlayStation 2, Windows, Xbox, and…Nintendo GameCube in 2003.

But this new installment will be a prequel to the original game.

We see stellar graphics, though likely nothing in-game. We see some familiar faces and then, we see the reimagined character Jade from the original game.

Unfortunately, Ubisoft did not showcase much gameplay aside from snippets of “Pre-alpha” gameplay. This suggests that the game won’t release for a while.

Gird Your History Loving Loins Assassin’s Creed Fans

If you’re a hardcore or even a casual Assassin’s Creed fan, this latest installment will re-ignite your love of the genre and game franchise.

This time, you can play as a man or woman with different dialogue options, romantic options, and story decisions based on that initial choice.

I’d suggest reading Kotaku’s coverage on it since they got to play it already.

You can pick it up October 5th, 2018 for PC, Xbox One, and PS4.

Creepy VR Game Transference From Elijah Wood

You might know the actor Elijah Wood better as Frodo from The Lord of the Rings trilogy movies. But he also is, apparently, a VR game designer.

Transference is VR-ready, though not VR required. It looks incredibly eerie with significant aural and visual cues. You seem to be playing a child of an estranged mother and father with more sinister things going on beneath the surface.

When it comes out in fall 2018, don’t play this one in the dark friends.

Other Ubisoft E3 Announcements and Updates

  • For Honor got a new game mode trailer, as well as an expansion trailer for Marching Fire. You can get the starter edition free on PC with a UPlay account this week
  • Starlink: Battle for Atlas keeps our dreams of more Star Fox alive with an October 16th release date for PS4, Nintendo Switch, and XBox One
  • Speaking of Nintendo IPs, there is also a Donkey Kong DLC for Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle and it looks sufficiently ridiculous
  • Skull & Bones offers a different experience than Sea of Thieves right now and you can sign up for the beta
  • The studio behind Alan Wake and Quantum Break debuted the mind-bending title Control set to release in 2019
  • The Division 2 got a new cinematic trailer announcing raids and free DLC
  • Anno 1800 got a new trailer that doesn’t reveal much and it’s expected “later this year”
  • Lastly, you have Trails Rising, a new game with more obstacles and wipeout opportunities coming out in February 2019 for consoles and PC

Sable Reminds me of Journey and has a Cool Soundtrack

Publisher Raw Fury paired with game studio Shedworks to create Sable.

It’s a coming-of-age exploration and adventure game with a soundtrack by indie band Japanese Breakfast. You can check out their NPR Tiny Desk concert for some insight as to their sound and style.

It will release sometime in 2019 on yet-to-be-determined platforms.

Kojima is a Very Weird man and I Can’t Wait to Play This

We still don’t know too much about Hideo Kojima’s next project Death Stranding.

But this latest trailer gave us more insight as to what the heck is going on with Norman Reedus, his sometimes throat, sometimes chest container baby, and these creepy invisible death dudes with hands for feet.

Even if you aren’t a fan of the Metal Gear Solid franchise, this game looks exceptionally interesting. What’s more — it looks absolutely gorgeous. Of course, we don’t yet know what is in-game graphics and what is rendered.

But some of this year’s E3 trailer is clearly in-game such as a porter walking through various climates including trudging through water and scaling steep and rocky hills.

We do get soundbytes in order to piece together a loose framework of the universe between this and the other trailers. There are familiar terms like “Crater” and “Porter” and new terms like “timefall” and “chiralium density”.

We also see the phrases “Give me your hand in death” and “Give me your hand in flesh” on the screen. So spooky, Kojima.

As for a release date, we don’t have much information. Kojima confirmed that he plans to release it before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, so at least we have that.

Spider-Man, Nioh 2, and Resident Evil 2 Remaster

Your friendly neighborhood Spiderman got another big trailer at E3. The graphics look great and we see Electro releasing dangerous inmates from high-security prison The Raft.

The combo-based fighting mechanics look intuitive and fun with occasional slowdowns undoubtedly related to “Spidey-sense”.

We also get a look at some of my favorite Spiderman villains: the Rhino, Scorpion, and even Vulture who gets sufficiently webbed. But the trailer ends with a total cliffhanger and someone appearing much to Spiderman’s utter surprise.

This PlayStation exclusive comes out September 7th, 2018.

We also got a Nioh 2 trailer to “ooh” and “aah” over, as well as more news about the Resident Evil 2 remaster.

This is Kinda the Only Thing I Care About From Nintendo

This game looks super fun and it contains every character in the franchise’s history including Ridley, Snake, and an updated Link in his tunic from Breath of the Wild.

You can play on some new stages, too, such as one from Splatoon 2.

Interestingly enough, if you still have one lying around, you can use your GameCube controller to play Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

But we don’t know yet if Nintendo itself will start producing their own. As you might remember, third party items can be bad news for Nintendo products.

Pick it up December 7th, 2018 and button mash your way to victory.

Destroy Your Friendships Anew With Super Mario Party

This trailer does not dramatize the Mario Party experience. It can totally destroy friendships even more than a vigorous game of Settlers of Catan.

It even features a two-system play option, so you can maximize friendship destruction.

You can get your hands on it October 5th, 2018.

Pokémon: Let’s Go With Pikachu and Eevee

Nintendo developers wanted to offer people without smartphone access the opportunity to have the same kind of experience that Pokémon Go offers.

Pokémon: Let’s Go with Pikachu or Eevee use similar fighting mechanics in terms of using berries and different types of poké balls to catch pokémon.

You can explore different environments with your companion pokémon on your back or atop your head. Their tails wag when you are near an item, too.

It also looks like there is a co-op option which is pretty neat.

You can pick up this installment in the Pokémon franchise November 16th, 2018.

Other Nintendo Announcements at E3 2018

There weren’t many (if any) surprises at June 12th’s Nintendo E3 2018 presentation. Kotaku and games writer Jason Schreier summed up how I felt on Twitter, as below.

We got to see some Pokémon gameplay and all of the Mario stuff got announced. We also got Xenoblade Chronicles 2: Torna ~ The Golden Country which looks very pretty. It also might be the only game in recent memory with a tilde (~) in the title.

Nintendo also announced a few other releases coming soon:

  • Overcooked got a sequel with an August 7th release date and I can’t wait
  • The next Fire Emblem game looks great, taking place in Fódlan, coming Spring 2019
  • Octopath Traveler offers an eight-character led experience and comes out July 13th
  • 2D Action adventure game Hollow Knight will grace gamers later this year
  • Kenichiro Tsukuda gives us a new mech action game called DAEMON X MACHINA coming sometime in 2019 for the Nintendo Switch
  • Multiplayer action/strategy game Killer Queen Black comes to Nintendo Switch sometime this winter with support for up to 8 players
  • Lastly and most obviously, the money printing machine: Fortnite

Developer Promises Mass Effect Isn’t Dead

Mike Gamble, lead producer at Bioware, insisted on a future for Mass Effect recently.

He did say that Anthem is priority one right now which is understandable. But even though Gamble and fellow Casey Hudson reassured fans, many languish over the fate of both the Mass Effect and Dragon Age franchises.

You can see a great deal of Mass Effect: Andromeda in Anthem’s latest gameplay trailer. So, hopefully, ME:A’s failure is Anthem’s gain and Bioware already has more resources diverting to Dragon Age 4. We just have to wait and see.

If you missed the weekend E3 2018 coverage, catch up with our comprehensive article covering everything Microsoft, EA, and Bethesda.

Oh, there was also a Pirates of the Caribbean themed trailer for Kingdom Hearts III and…holy budget Batman. This game might be worth the wait.

Sadly, there was not any news on the Final Fantasy 7 remake teased in 2015.

Which releases piqued your interest enough to make you pre-order them?

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Juliet Childers

Content Specialist and EDGY OG with a (mostly) healthy obsession with video games. She covers Industry buzz including VR/AR, content marketing, cybersecurity, AI, and many more.

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