It’s been a roller-coaster of an E3, with some really epic trailers, some surprise launches, and with some highly anticipated titles conspicuously absent. Make sure to check out our round-up for the start of the week, but here are some of the other E3 2018 highlights we think are worth keeping an eye on.
Starlink: Battle for Atlas
Apart from the occasional amiibo, you might have been forgiven for thinking we were done with ‘toys to life’ games. Leave it to Ubisoft to produce a new one that looks surprisingly good. Starlink sees players clip a variety of pilots, spaceships and weaponry to their controller to change their in-game craft. Unlike previous toys to life games Ubisoft have said that if you’d rather not fill your house with plastic spaceships everything can be purchased as downloadable content. Oh, and the Nintendo Switch version will have Star Fox content. Starlink: Battle for Atlas releases on 16/10/2018 on the Switch, PS4 and Xbox One.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
For many Super Smash Bros was one of the most anticipated Nintendo titles of E3. We knew relatively little before the show, which prompted the usual roster speculation. Nintendo, for better or for worse, devoted roughly half of their direct to a very detailed look of what’s changed in Super Smash Bros Ultimate. The great news is that every previous combatant in the series is returning. This not only means the return of Solid Snake from the Metal Gear Solid series, but that all the other impressive third-party fighters from the Wii U/3DS game will be mixing it up again. As Nintendo have rightly highlighted this makes the game the biggest cross-over in gaming. While there were a few new character reveals the news that Waluigi is still only an assist trophy stole the show. Smash Bros will be out December 7th, without Waluigi.
Mass Effect: Andromeda was a huge disappointment for many and cost developers, BioWare, a lot of good will. With one sci-fi RPG series now seemingly dead in the water that puts a lot of pressure on Anthem, EA and BioWare’s new RPG shooter. While solo-play is on offer the gameplay footage really emphases the co-op and multiplayer aspects of this title. It has a tremendous, even quite high-concept, science fiction aethetic and the hands-on reviews suggest everything from the jet-packs to open world make this a great feeling game to play. It’ll be the story and world-building that really decide whether Anthem is worth the price of admission ever, and we’ll find out on February 22nd 2019.
Daemon X Machina
Continuing the theme of robot suits battling it out one of the first games in Nintendo’s E3 direct was the reveal of a new mech action game, Daemon X Machina. From the producers of the Armored Core series there’s some serious mech-battling pedigree on show here. What really makes this title stand out is it manages to balance a distinctly dark and edgy aesthetic with some really eye-catching, colourful cel-shaded graphics. We got a longer look at this one during the Treehouse livestream, and hope to see more before its release in 2019.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses
A Fire Emblem for the Switch had been announced previously, and along with Metroid Prime 4, was a title fans were eager to hear more about. While Metroid was sadly absent from E3 we were treated to an outstanding Fire Emblem trailer that really showcased the franchises potential. Fire Emblem has been handheld only since Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn on the Wii in 2008, so its great to see the superior hardware of the Switch being put to use. There’s still a long way to go before the games launch in 2019, and there’s still a lot that we don’t know, but the trailer suggests a much evolved, more serious Fire Emblem.
Metal Wolf Chaos XD
Sometimes the most surprising announcements end up being your favourite. A re-release of a Japan-only exclusive for the original Xbox was not something I was expecting to see announced at E3, but was pleasantly surprised. Metal Wolf Chaos XD sees US President (not the current one) use a suit of power armour to battle the Vice President, whose forces have taken over the country. It looks as wild as you’d expect, and has long been regarded as an Xbox hidden gem. The game is heading to Windows, the Xbox One and the PS4 sometime in 2018. Among a week with a barrage of new announcements Metal Wolf Chaos XD has been much overshadowed, but its nice to see a developer picking up a highly-regard, hard to obtain title and bring it to a wider audience.