Earlier this week, we gave you part one of our 20 Best Games of E3 2017. Today we give you part two. We are nothing if not logical. Josh Langrish, Jozef Raczka, James Toal, Brian Stasiukaitis,
Jason Noyce, Dan Withey, Mitchell Lineham and me of course, are back to give our two cents on the best games of the show, in no particular order. I’ll repeat that, IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER. Oh, what does it matter? The comment section’s gonna look like hell anyway.
The follow up to the surprise hit of 2015, the sequel to the reboot no one thought they wanted, the next chapter in the life of the smoothest silent protagonist in video games. They didn’t give us any details except that it would be hell on earth and there would be more enemies and more weapons. Honestly? After how good it felt to slaughter the demons with those big, beefcake guns in the last game I don’t need much else to sell me on a sequel apart.
As it turned out, Microsoft’s Halo: Infinite reveal was less of a game presentation, and more of a technical demonstration. But, as we move beyond three years since Halo 5, was what we saw during Microsoft’s showcase enough to get us excited? Yes, sir… just don’t expect Master-Chief’s return anytime soon. On show was developer 343’s new Slipspace engine, designed to realise the heady-ambition of the latest instalment of Xbox’s most treasured of franchises. And although we’ve been told to expect Infinite to ‘evolve’ between now and its TBC release date, the game-engine demo looked stunning. Also, there’ll be less of Halo 5’s multi-narrative jumping around fuckery – Halo: Infinite will have Master-Chief front and centre.
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
I’m notoriously resistant to the charms of the Assassin’s Creed series. I always found the random chaos of the open-world layout to work to the detriment of the stealth-based gameplay. However, this new approach of a more flexible RPG progression format and a more Wither 3 like quest structure is much more my idea of a good time. The Bioware-style conversation trees and massive 300-person battles are the icing on the cake.
Bioware do a loot shooter with giant mechs. I’m not drooling, you’re drooling. One of the most under discussed elements of this game – and when you have action that frantic and character models that pristine, this is understandable – is the world building. You play as a mercenary wielding a giant weaponised robot suit called a freelancer (no wonder game journalists are all over this one), who protect the Anthem of Creation from the domineering Dominion. If it feels epic just reading that description what must playing the game be like?
I’ve never been a huge Remedy guy. Max Payne relied too heavily on slow mo. The episodic nature of Alan Wake meant nothing in a video game and they spent too many resources on Quantum Break’s TV show. Control, on the other hand, seems to be a game built from the ground up not to prop up any one gimmick but a multitude of well thought out concepts supporting each other. The physics-based telepathy looks like a barrel of laughs, the world is intriguing, and the story is strange and enigmatic in all the right ways.
Ghost of Tsushima
Of all the titles displayed at this year’s E3 only one truly captured my interest. Ghosts Of Tsushima. The gameplay trailer with its stunning visuals, intense combat and its dynamic characters quickly became my standout game of E3. While many games intrigued me none stayed with me like Tsushima. The game will give players the chance to become a Master Samurai through precise combat that will see you deflect enemy advances until you find the right moment to strike. The gameplay alone will give you the feeling of being a Samurai. I, for one, can’t wait to get hold of this title and live out my own Samurai adventure.
For years we begged Ubisoft for an Assassin’s Creed set in Japan. To stalk the Japanese towns and villages, slaying Templars with katanas or sticking to the shadows like ninjas, Japan is one of the most potent environments for the Assassin’s Creed experience. But whereas Ubisoft have ignored us, Sucker Punch have listened. Ghost of Tsushima looks set to be the open-world feudal Japan game of our dreams. The intensely cool mission showcased at the underappreciated Sony E3 press conference, isn’t even part of the main story, so you know Sucker Punch are dedicated to giving us meaningful content in our side quests instead of the usual open-world busy work.
Sea of Solitude
One of the brief points of EA’s press conference that provided a respite from the oppressively corporate tone, Sea of Solitude from Jo-Mei Games is one the most unique and mysterious experiences coming out on consoles. However, while the premise is certainly something I am looking forward to and the story sounds fascinating, what really had me enthralled was how creative director, Cornelia Geppert, described her previous work like a form of imprisonment and how Sea of Solitude is her escape. Good or bad, the work of such a passionate creative will always have something of value to begin a discussion.
Let’s be honest: this trailer was built to create a buzz around a product that is most likely going to be mediocre, at best. But still! That’s a ton of great franchises coming together in a game reminiscent of Dragon Ball Z Budokai. This is definitely a game that could fall on either side of the Fun Fence, but I’ve got hopes it will be worth all of my time. The graphics look sharp, and all the major Anime franchises are accounted for, so it’s just a matter of locking down that crisp, chaotic gameplay. Still, it’s too bad they already ruled out playing as Light from Death Note, though this is a game that looks ripe for constant expansion.
Kingdom Hearts 3
James had this to say: I won’t be the first to admit that they’ve had trouble keeping up with the story. After being put on multiple systems ranging from the PlayStation, Gameboy Advance, and Nintendo DS, but thanks to the collections being put out on PS4 it’s never been easier to get caught up with what’s going on with Sora, Donald, and Goofy. Frozen, Toy Story, and Monsters Inc have all been added in to the sequel so you bet your ass I’m excited about this.
Meanwhile, Brian thought: This is a game that’s perhaps been too long in the making. As (hopefully) the final chapter in a franchise with just a bit too much excess content, Kingdom Hearts 3 has some lofty expectations to meet. Still, this is something that sparked my love for RPGs, and I’d like to see this series to its conclusion. The trailer looks to lean more heavily on mini games within each world, which was always the best part of the series, so that’s a positive step. It may be a fool’s bet, but this game could be something beautiful if they just figure out why people loved Kingdom Hearts in the first place.
Untitled Goose Game
This is a tad cheating as this wasn’t at E3 2018 but absence does make the heart grow fonder. The latest production by Australian developers House House (behind the competitive Catdog-esque wrestling game Push Me Pull You), Untitled Goose Game is a game that is sellable purely off its one-line press release ‘It’s a lovely morning in the village and you are a horrible goose.’ Nothing at E3 caught my eyes this year but I was looking to see if they had anything to show of this mischievous goose. They didn’t, but that’s doesn’t mean I’m not still keeping my eyes open.
I don’t need a lot of space to explain why this is rad. It’s Battle Toads, and it’s coming soon. Hell yeah, Battle Toads.