Preston’s View on the Ups and Downs of Each E3 2019 Press Conference

Another Gaming Christmas (a.k.a. E3) has come and gone, and a hefty number of new games and expansions were shown off to the numerous attendees. Out of all the companies that showed up to the party, only seven of the biggest publishers hosted press conferences to announce their lineups. Now that the convention has concluded, the time has come for me to tell you my opinion on the pros and cons of each individual conference. You are more than welcome to tell me your own views, whether they compare to or contrast with mine.

I’ve been a longtime fan of Electronic Arts’ catalog, but I found this to be a slightly underwhelming edition of EA Play. The star of the show, in my book, was the demonstration of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. So far, I really like the combat and parkour-like platforming. And from what I’ve seen in the cutscenes, the plot will not disappoint. EA is really trying to prove that you don’t need the Battlefront name just to be a good Star Wars game. The new editions of FIFA and Madden NFL were displayed, the former of which has a mode that is akin to FIFA Street. Everything else about EA Play was simply updates/expansions for Battlefield V, The Sims 4, and Apex Legends. It wasn’t a terrible conference by any means, but I feel like EA could’ve brought more things to the table, like the latest game in the Need for Speed franchise.

Microsoft’s press conference was well above average this year, with the star of their show being the Project Scarlett console. This mean piece of machinery promises super-short load times, 8K resolution, and 120 frames per second. The first confirmed launch title for this new console is none other than Halo Infinite, which isn’t really a surprise to me. Microsoft’s current console, the Xbox One, is receiving a new remote play functionality similar to that of the PlayStation family. There’s even a new controller coming called the Elite Series 2, which has a 40-hour battery life, a charging dock, and Bluetooth compatibility. PC gamers will be happy to know that the Xbox Game Pass will soon finally be arriving to Windows computers. To close this paragraph, I’ll list all of the other games and updates that were displayed at this conference:

  • The Lego Speed Champions pack for Forza Horizon 4
  • Cyberpunk 2077, starring Keanu Reeves
  • Gears 5
  • Elden Ring
  • Phantasy Star Online 2
  • Psychonauts 2, developed by the newly-acquired Double Fine
  • The Battletoads reboot
  • The Outerworlds
  • A reboot of Microsoft Flight Simulator
  • Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot
  • Bleeding Edge
  • Minecraft Dungeons
  • A game based on The Blair Witch Project
  • Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga
  • Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition
  • Tales of Arise
  • Ori and the Will of the Wisps
  • Borderlands 3
  • State of Decay 2: Heartland
  • Spiritfare
  • Wasteland 3
  • Dying Light 2
  • Way to the Woods
  • Gears Pop
  • The Legend of Wright
  • 12 Minutes
  • Crossfire X

As you can see, Microsoft had an absolute butt-ton of games on display this year. I applaud them for their lineup, and I can’t wait to hear more about Scarlett.

Bethesda didn’t have anything mind-blowing to share, but they had a truckload of updates for their current games and trailers for their upcoming titles. We even witnessed announcements for the beginnings of new IP’s — An action game called Ghostwire: Tokyo, and a firearm-filled game called Deathloop. And finally, Bethesda announced their streaming service called Orion, which sounds like a competitor to Google’s Stadia. All aboard the streaming bandwagon! The remainder of Bethesda’s presentation included…

  • Doom Eternal
  • Fallout 76, which is soon getting NPC’s and a 52-player battle royale mode
  • The Nintendo Switch port of Elder Scrolls: Blades
  • Wolfenstein: Youngblood
  • The Elder Scrolls VI
  • Commander Keen mobile game
  • “Rise of the Ghosts” expansion for Rage 2
  • Wolfenstein: Cyberpilot VR game
  • “Scalebreaker” DLC for The Elder Scrolls Online
  • “Moons of Elsweyr” expansion for The Elder Scrolls Legends

I’m not an enormous Bethesda fan, but I can’t complain about their conference this year, even if they didn’t announce any new IP’s. As long as the games are good, it’s a win-win for everybody.

Indie game giant Devolver Digital had a thin catalog to show off (Kind of like EA), but that doesn’t mean their conference was bad. Before I list the individual pieces of software they showed off, I should mention they now have an 8-in-1 self-rip-off compilation called Devolver Bootleg. Never thought such a collection would be a thing, but Devolver’s proved me wrong. Now that that’s out of the way, here are the other titles and expansions they displayed:

  • Fall Guys Ultimate Knockout
  • An arcade light-gun game called Enter the Gungeon: House of the Undead
  • Carrion
  • “Picnic Panic” DLC for The Messenger
  • My Friend Pedro

I never delved into Devolver Digital’s catalog, but there’s always the chance I’ll give one of their games a shot. Hopefully some of you readers are happy with their lineup.

Next up to the plate was Ubisoft, and their flagship announcement was that of Uplay Plus, which costs $14.99 per month and rivals subscription services like Xbox Game Pass and Google Stadia Pro. If I had a shot of Pepsi for each company that’s jumping on the streaming bandwagon…Anyway, here are the games and expansions that the French publisher had at their show:

  • Watch Dogs Legion, which takes place in London and allows you to recruit and take control of nearby players
  • Upcoming episodes for The Division 2, along with the announcement of The Division on Netflix
  • A zombie-filled shooter game called Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Quarantine
  • Roller Champions, a game that depicts a futuristic version of roller derby (I’m actually really intrigued about this one)
  • Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Breakpoint (Did I mention a cute doggo appeared on stage?)
  • An action game called Gods & Monsters

Ubisoft doesn’t need Assassin’s Creed or FarCry in order to have a good E3 conference, and they proved that this year with ease.

The RPG-loving folks at Square Enix took their turn next, and delivered a pretty stellar press conference this year. It may have been mostly about Final Fantasy, but there was nothing wrong with that and they had a fine amount of other software to talk about. I’m definitely curious about the racing game they’re publishing (No surprise considering how many racing games I’ve reviewed here, right?), Circuit Superstars. I’ve written an entire article recapping this conference, so feel free to read that one for my full analysis on it. https://silversoulgaming.com/2019/06/11/squaring-off-a-recap-of-square-enixs-e3-2019-press-conference/

Last but the furthest thing from least, Nintendo stepped onto the stage and put on what was probably the best conference of E3 2019. There were no 3DS games to be found, but plenty of games for the Switch. The Big N’s lineup at this presentation included…

  • Animal Crossing: New Horizons, which has been delayed to March 2020
  • Hero from Dragon Quest and Banjo-Kazooie coming to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
  • Sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild in development
  • Dragon Quest XI: Definitive Edition
  • Luigi’s Mansion 3 (Which I am absolutely amped up for)
  • The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening, which has a dungeon-maker mode
  • Resident Evil 5 and 6
  • No More Heroes 3
  • Fire Emblem: Three Houses
  • Panzer Dragoon remake
  • Contra Rogue Corps
  • Contra Anniversary Collection
  • Spyro Reignited Trilogy
  • Alien: Isolation
  • Astral Chain
  • Pokemon Sword and Shield, which work with the Poke Ball Plus
  • Daemon x Machina
  • Trials of Mana, which is a Seiken Denetsu 3 remake
  • Cadence of Hyrule
  • Mario & Sonic at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games (So pumped this series is coming to Switch!)

With an incredible press conference like this, I can see why a blue puppet named Arlo claimed that Nintendo is back. They are indeed back to being relevant again, and they ain’t budging!

It wasn’t quite perfect, but I really didn’t have much to criticize about this year’s E3. The remainder of 2019 and the beginning of 2020 are going to be packed to the grim with some enthralling games and services, even if it seems like the whole streaming-subscription thing is going to be a rapidly-spreading infection (Not that game-streaming is stupid or anything like that). This is probably the most challenging article I’ve written, but all’s well that ends well (No smoke from my keyboard, don’t worry about it). Hope y’all enjoyed E3 2019 as much as I did!

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Ubisoft E3 2019

Ubisoft’s E3 2019 press conference confirmed a lot of rumors and leaks from the weeks before but still had a few surprises in store.

Announcements

First up was a trailer for Watch Dogs Legion, which we got info on last week in a leak. The trailer smoothly transitioned into what appears to be a gameplay demo. It introduced switching between characters, the London setting, and surprisingly, permadeath. The game is coming March 6, 2020 and you can see the trailer below.

Then, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia actor Rob McElhenny took the stage to announce a tv show called Mythic Quest. Debuting on Apple TV+, the show is about the development team behind an MMO titled Mythic Quest. They are on the cusp of debuting their biggest expansion and the show follows their journey as a dev team. Ubisoft’s involvement isn’t clear other than that they are involved. Check out the trailer here.

Next up was a trailer for Rainbow Six Siege‘s Operation Phantom Sight showing off the new operator Warden. No new info apart from the season launching tomorrow. New content is coming to Brawlhalla in the form of Adventure Time DLC. The trailer showed of Finn, Jake and Princess Bubblegum as new characters with a new stage and music. The DLC is available today.

Ghost Recon: Breakpoint debuted a new trailer as well featuring Jon Bernthal’s Cole D. Walker. Bernthal then came out on stage (with a dog!) to talk the game up and introduced another trailer from the Ghosts’ perspective. Ubisoft also announced as part of the post-launch plan for the game, AI teammates will be making their return. A beta will arrive on September 5.

In more Tom Clancy news, Tom Clancy’s Elite Squad for mobile was announced and features characters from all games in the Clancy universe. Sadly, this was the only place we got to see Sam Fisher.

Inevitably, Just Dance 2020 was announced and featured a dancing panda musical number. It comes out on the Nintendo Wii still so that’s weird. You do you Ubisoft. For Honor‘s newest DLC trailer featured a ghostly samurai slicing it’s way through players in the Shadows of the Hitokiri.

Operation Phantom Sight wasn’t the only Rainbow Six news at the event. Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Quarantine is coming in early 2020 and comes from a brand new studio in Ubisoft. The game is a 3 player PvE game within the Rainbow Six universe.

The Division 2 announced a free weekend from June 13 – 16 before talking about their Year One content. Releasing in 3 episodes, the first goes outside the city to a presidential compound, the National Zoo and Kenly college. Episode 2 releases in the fall and will be in the Pentagon and also features the games second raid. The third episode, which got it’s own trailer, will return to New York on Coney Island. Finally, Ubisoft also announced Netflix as a partner for The Division movie they announced a while ago.

Another leak that was confirmed, Uplay+ exclusively on PC for $14.99 a month. Watch the trailer here and pre-register on Ubisoft’s page if you’re interested. Ubisoft also announced it will be available on Stadia in 2020.

Next, Ubisoft revealed Roller Champions (also leaked). The competitive team sports game feels like it was built with esports in mind. At least we can play it soon. Ubisoft announced an E3 demo would be available from June 10 – 14 to play a pre-alpha build.

As the show wrapped up, the Assassin’s Creed Odyssey team announced a brand new IP called Gods & Monsters. Releasing on February 25, 2020 the trailer didn’t have any gameplay but is impressive considering the teams dedication to adding content to AC Odyssey while obviously working on this game as well.

Final Thoughts

Ubisoft’s press conference showed a lot but only had a few compelling games in my opinion. Despite the (numerous) leaks they still had a few surprises. Watch Dogs Legion was easily the most impressive game Ubisoft showed, but their support of older games is respectable as well. Gods and Monsters is a big surprise and something I know I’ll be looking for more info on.

Stay tuned for more E3 2019 info and for a recap of Microsoft’s conference on Sunday click here.

Next Watch Dogs Possibly Leaked; Teases Playing as Any Character

A retail leak from yesterday hints at Watch Dogs Legion being announced soon.

TheNerdMag spotted the leak on Amazon’s UK site which is still here (as of the time of writing). Previous rumors hinted at a London setting and this new possible leak indicates the same. The description is a little odd, as one sentence declares “Every individual you meet in the open world, has a full set of animations, voice over, character traits and visuals that are generated & guided by gameplay systems”.

This doesn’t lend much to its credibility but it’s hard to ignore the Amazon listing. Part of the leak also suggests you can play as any character in the game. The description on the listing points out how London is one of the most surveilled cities in the world. It’s likely one of the reasons Ubisoft (possibly) chose this location.

Whatever the truth, we’re likely to find out more at E3 this year. Ubisoft’s conference is less than a week away so we don’t have long to wait.

Rainbow Six Siege Video Details Operation Phantom Sight

Ubisoft fully unveiled Season 2 for Rainbow Six Siege’s Year 4 at the Pro League Finals today.

The new season, titled Operation Phantom Sight, gave a detailed look at the new operators Nøkk and Warden. Both were previously teased by Ubisoft earlier in the week. The video details their gadgets and loadouts as well as the changes made to the existing map Kafe Dostoyevsky.

Nøkk, the attacker, can activate her gadget to go invisible to cameras and silence her footsteps. She can activate it as many times as she wants as long as the device has charge. The new defender, Warden, has glasses that when activated clear up the flash effect or prevent him from being flashed. He also can see through smoke, which works better when he isn’t moving.

The video also details some of the map changes to Kafe Dostoyevsky. They include a major change to the kitchen area, new balconies on the third floor and a new receptionist area on the first floor.

Also shown but not in the video, existing operator Glaz has had his gadget reworked to only function when he isn’t moving. The operator Lesion also will receive his own elite cosmetic set, which has its own video.

Ubisoft Delays Skull and Bones

After Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag made waves (Nautical pun!) in the gaming world in 2012, Ubisoft explored making a pirate game that was not tethered to the Assassin’s Creed name. They sent out surveys and found that there was quite an interest in such a game and came up with Skull and Bones. An online multiplayer pirate game…

sea
No, not that one.

Whereas Sea of Thieves has a cartoonish vibe and you need a crew, Skull and Bones was grittier violent version and the gameplay would reflect the Assassin’s Creed ship combat style.

It has been six years since Ubisoft decided to try their hand at this game and it has not been smooth sailing (last nautical pun… probably). The games creative director left Ubisoft late last year and the game had been expected to have a showing at this years E3 conference. Alas it is not meant to be, Ubisoft has delayed the game and will update players when there is news to share.

Black Flag and Sea of Thieves will have to sate your pirate needs for now.

Next Assassin’s Creed Setting Revealed

Be ready to don your hood and venture into the Viking Era.

A poster found in the background of Ubisoft’s The Division 2 has revealed the setting for the next Assassin’s Creed game, due out in 2020. Set against the wall of the Potomac Event Center is found a poster with the title, “Valhalla.” The poster features a viking, who upon closer inspection is holding an Apple of Eden, one of the MacGuffin quest items from the Assassin’s Creed games.

valhalla

The poster was first brought to attention by YouTube personality JorRaptor, and his video on his discovery can be found here. The information was verified by Jason Schreier of Kotaku, who had apparently know the setting for some time, but did not want to be the first to report on the issue. Jason also confirmed that the next Watch Dogs game, due possibly later this year, would be set in London.

As soon as more information is released, you will find it here.

Assassins Creed Odyssey Update Adds New Game + and More

Assassins Creed Odyssey received a new update that has added a New Game + mode, new frames for photo mode, support for next weeks Legacy of the Blade DLC and The Lost Tales of Greece DLC that is coming down the road, and many small tweaks and balances to the game.

The New Game + mode allows you to start a new campaign of the game from the beginning but with the gear, mounts, spear upgrades, ship upgrades, abilities, drachmae, and crafting materials from a previous play through. A bonus being that you can change the character you play with, if you had done a full play through as Kassandra you can play as Alexios and vice versa.

A full list of the patch notes can be found here. Be warned that there is some major spoilage for the Lost Tales of Greece DLC that can be found in these notes.