If I have to be honest about this year’s E3, I would have to say this was pretty underwhelming. Over the past few years we’ve had amazing announcements coming from both Microsoft and Sony, but this year it felt lackluster.
That is not to say that this year’s E3 was bad, it just wasn’t as strong as it was these past few years. There are games that do make me excited and I can’t wait to play. These are my picks, and MY picks alone of E3 2016.
BEST CONFERENCE: TIE MICROSOFT AND SONY
For the past few years, Sony has been dominating E3, while Microsoft was always near them. This year, however, it feels like a tie. Both Sony and Microsoft showed off great games with more live demos than we’ve seen in a E3 stage for quite some time. While Sony get’s the biggest shock of the show, Microsoft showed us a glimpse of the future with Project Scorpio. While I’m not big on the 4K machine, the Xbox One S is something I would like to get. The Xbox One S is basically a smaller Xbox One. Both Sony and Microsoft had a fantastic conference. Will it be remembered as one of the best? Most likely not, but it does show how close these two have been with each other for years.
WORST CONFERENCE: EA
For the second year in a row, EA shows what NOT to do in a conference. A good portion of the conference was spent on behind the scenes B-Roll on games that won’t be out for another few years. They had the makings of a great conference with Mass Effect: Andromeda and Battlefield 1, but it was an hour of nothing. For those games to be the biggest games they have right now, you would have think at least one of them will get a live 15 minute demo. I do have to say that it was great to see Amy Henning again and from the brief footage we saw of her game, it looks like the Star Wars game I always wanted. If there is one solace about all this is that they didn’t spend an ungodly amount of time on Sports for once.
BEST TEASER TRAILER: DEATH STRANDING
One of the best moments to come out of Sony’s conference was the reveal of Hideo Kojima’s new game, Death Stranding starring Norman Reedus. This is a trailer to tells you nothing and tells you everything. This is a teaser to a game that most likely won’t be out in this decade, but knowing that Hideo Kojima has full reigns is something to be excited about.
BEST DEMO TRAILER: FOR HONOR
For Honor was playable in the show floor, but from what it seems in the Ubisoft press conference, it was B-Roll for the stage. This game look amazing and the combat system seems completely unique. Having a single player mode makes me excited to get my hands on it. The release date is an issue though, because Persona 5 is coming out on that date too.
BEST LIVE DEMO: THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: BREATH OF THE WILD
I’m going to admit that I didn’t see everything Nintendo had to offer with this game. It’s just so vast. This is everything The Legend of Zelda needs to be going in the future. Big open world, ruins to explore, and tons to discover. This felt more like a true adventure game than any other Zelda games that came before it. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild will be a system seller for the Nintendo NX system comes out.
BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT: NO RED DEAD REDEMPTION 2
There were months of rumors and even a leaked map, but when E3 came around there was nothing. I really wanted Red Dead Redemption 2 to be real and shown at E3. While I have no doubt that Rockstar is working on it, seeing even a teaser trailer would have gotten me excited. Rockstar does things their way and when they are ready to reveal it, they will in a grandiose way.
BEST FULL TRAILER: THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: BREATH OF THE WIND
South Park: The Fractured but Whole almost had this, but every time I see the Breath of the Wind trailer, I’m in awe. This game looks stunning in every frame and what you can see and do is something makes me want to get lost in this world. This is running on Wii U, so there is no telling what the NX version will look like.
BEST NINTENDO GAME: THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: BREATH OF THE WILD
Nintendo spent much of it’s E3 time on The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. While they did show of Pokémon Sun, Pokémon Moon, Ever Oasis and more, Zelda took much of the top spot. Zelda was going to get this no matter what so.
BEST XBOX ONE GAME: GEARS OF WAR 4
I’m a fan of the Gears of War franchise and finally seeing a good portion of the single player portion makes me excited to play it. I don’t have a Xbox One yet, but this will be one of the first games I’ll play on it. It looks to be more of the same, and that is alright by me.
BEST PLAYSTATION 4 GAME: GOD OF WAR (PS4)
I honestly didn’t see this coming. In the past, God of War has always been a fun, if mindless, hack and slash games. Changing it up into something like Tomb Raider and The Last of Us was something I didn’t think I wanted. Having Cory Borlog back, who directed God of War 2, makes me very excited on what is next for Kratos.
BEST MULTIPLATFORM GAME: MAFIA III
I never played the Mafia games before, so I’ll be coming into the franchise with fresh eyes. The gameplay they revealed looks like it’ll be awesome to drive around a faux New Orleans. Also playing as a black protagonist during the racially charged 1960s will lead to an interesting story to tell.
BEST LOOKING GAME: WE HAPPY FEW
Last year an indie game took this spot with Cuphead, this year another indie game is taking it. We Happy Few looks incredible. The psychedelic 1970s british vibe is something you don’t see often in games. It’s got a uniquely creepy look.
BEST SURPRISE: RESIDENT EVIL 7: BIOHAZARD
Talk about the biggest shocker of the show. It was incredibly smart of Capcom and Sony to reveal Resident Evil 7: Biohazard the way it did. We start off with found footage, first-person exploration, and a trailer. You would have never thought this was a Resident Evil game until the logo appeared. The best part about it is that it’s returning to horror instead of over-the-top action. While the demo is lacking on the genuine scares, it does nail the atmosphere. I can’t wait to see what the game is really like.
BEST INDIE GAME: WE HAPPY FEW
There was a surprising lack of Indie games this year at E3. While we did see some indie games during Microsoft’s conference, it was shown in a sizzle reel. We Happy Few is the only indie game that was shown that interests me. I don’t know if it’ll come out for the PlayStation 4 though.
BEST OVERALL GAME: PERSONA 5
There is a “bit” of bias when it comes to Persona with me, but I will have to say that if Atlus didn’t show any gameplay footage of Persona 5, this award would have gone to something else. Those eight minutes of gameplay made me giddy with excitement more than any other game shown at this year’s E3. Bringing it closer to the Shin Megami Tensei franchise is exciting for me.
- The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wind
- South Park: The Fractured but Whole
- For Honor
- Mafia III
That was E3 2016. Unless I was there on the show floor, I would be saying things differently, but from an outsider’s perspective for me is that it was a pretty lackluster show. These do tend to happen every few years, but it still doesn’t stop me from getting excited for what’s to come.
Jesse Webster is a Senior Writer for MONG and it’s his two year anniversary of being here.