Another E3 has come and gone, but whether you're an Xbox, PlayStation, or Nintendo fan, it's safe to say that everyone came away a winner this year with some amazing new games coming out. Sure, a good amount of them might be coming out in 2015, but that doesn't mean we're any less excited to play them.
While we do mention more than a few big name titles below, we also mention a few smaller titles that definitely deserve more notice, so definitely be sure to check them out as well.
So without further ado, here's a look at the games that left a big impression on us during this year's E3 as separated by each writers' picks.
The Legend of Zelda
What series producer Eiji Aonuma showed us the first look at the next iteration of Zelda, it wasn't much more than a quick glance at what the actual world would look like, but holy cow did that short minute or so wow us. The revelation that this would be the first truly open-world Zelda game combined with the beautiful engine they showed off was enough to get an Zelda fan drooling with anticipation. And everything that was shown was actual gameplay as well? 2015 can't come soon enough.
Xenoblade Chronicles X
Xenoblade Chronicles X has been on my radar ever since it was announced a year or two ago, and for good reason. It looks to build on what the first Xenoblade Chronicles did in many ways, and offers a far better looking and more expansive world (and presumably, a deeper, more epic story as well). While I wasn't blown away by the gameplay trailer shown in a Nintendo Direct earlier this year, Nintendo's Treehouse livestream demo managed to turn that around tenfold with their playthrough of the game's first 45 minutes or so. There's so much content in this game that it's busting at the seams, and I can't wait to dive into what is likely to be the deepest RPG experience until Final Fantasy XV comes out.
-Xbox One, Steam-
Admittedly, I don't know too much about Studio MDHR's Cuphead beyond that it's supposed to be a run-and-gun sort of game, but I do know that I was completely taken with its old-school 1920s-1930s animation style. In a sea of indie games being shown in a sizzle reel during Microsoft's pre-E3 press conference, Cuphead was the one game that made my eyes bulge out like a cartoon character (fittingly). If developers can make games that look seamlessly like real animation and cartoons, we just might be coming into a new Golden Age for video game animation, so I can't wait to see more of this Xbox One and Steam title.
Rainbow Six: Siege
-Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC-
Rainbow Six Siege looks like an incredibly impressive new game in the franchise and I wish it were out already. It looks astounding thanks to incredible detail and destructible environments. Then there's the huge reliance on teamwork because players don't respawn if they get killed. Honestly, it reminds me a lot of the SWAT series. With Sierra all but gone now though this is probably the best I can get.
Chasm might be a name that's slightly familiar to you. If so, that's probably because it was Kickstarted quite successfully. The Metroidvania-esque action platformer was on the show floor and proved to be tremendously fun. I couldn't help wishing the demo were longer so I could keep on playing.
I'm of the particular Nintendo crowd that thinks the company should just keep making sequels to their multiple franchises infinitely, so when I first saw this new IP pop up on the Digital Event, I was less than enthused. However, after watching the trailer at the event and some Treehouse footage, I'm more than sold. Leave it to Nintendo to make a shooter based around cute squid kids shooting ink everywhere.
Grim Fandango HD
-PlayStation 4, PS Vita-
It's a fact, and not opinion, that Tim Schafer is a game developer god, and that he makes absolutely no bad games whatsoever (Brutal Legend? What's that?). Almost all of his works are available in some modern format, except for one: Grim Fandango. So imagine the surprise when Sony announced that Schafer was remastering the supposed classic and bringing it to the Vita? I honestly can't wait to give this title a spin when it re-releases.
Final Fantasy Type-0 HD
-Xbox One, PlayStation 4-
A little before E3, Square announced that it wasn't bringing the likes of Kingdom Hearts III, Final Fantasy XV, or Bravely Second to the show, and left fans wondering... well, what are they going to show? Square decided to drop a bomb of awesome hype instead, announcing an HD remake of the fan-lauded PSP title Final Fantasy Type-0. A shame that a group of fans just finished a fan translation on the original title, but great news for those that want to experience the game officially translated on the big screen.
The Legend of Zelda
Since its conception, Zelda has been—or at least strove to be—an open-world game. Yet the experience, the world, was always limited to some degree by being merely a coalescence of individual spaces (i.e. predefined screens in which the action occurs) that exist in succession. The player is permitted to navigate between and within the grid-like world, knowingly passing between each arranged space. As such, the open-world offered by Zelda games has always been present, if not somewhat illusive. Contra to Zelda's pedigree, the latest offers a world that is no longer composed of spatially restricted areas, but rather its aim is to yield a truly open-world experience that echos the exploratory freedom and immersion granted by the Elder Scrolls series.
No Man's Sky
True, footage and screenshots of No Man's Sky have been revealed prior to its E3 2014 presentation, but the game proves yet again its capacity to awe and inspire. The game appears to condone enthusiastically the type of wondrous exploration that can only be induced by the act of happenstance. Each planet is unique to each player. Further, the living galaxy is constantly in flux such that it develops and manipulates itself in accordance with additional players. All this enables one to feel immersed in their own aggregated experience, their own story, while simultaneously existing as part of a living, ever-changing, infrastructure that is beyond predictability. One last thing: ground... to air... to space... to space combat.
Rainbow Six: Siege
-Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC-
Despite its uninspired subtitle, Rainbow Six is back, baby! It was something that once lived wildly in the interest of gamers, yet the tactical shooter is now rendered somewhat of an apparition in the shooter genre. This is probably the chief result of the advent of fast-paced shooters be they third-person or first. I am old, my reflexes have escaped me, and my only means of survival in most online shooters is my aptitude to outplay my opponents not with any gamerly skill, but with methodical preparation and point-by-point execution. In other words, I no longer win online with skill (e.g. impossible headshots, no-scopes, etc.), but with my brain and with team coordination. This is what Rainbow Six has and always will be about.
Insomniac wants to make me cry. It hasn't been since I saw Resistance demoed on PlayStation 3 that I wanted to play an Insomniac game this badly. Unfortunately, I don't have an Xbox One but Sunset Overdrive is a major reason to change that. The universe Ted Price and his band of merry developers has created is super unique, colorful and FUN. This inFAMOUS meets Ratchet and Clank adventure through a post apocalyptic playground is going to be a must have game for Xbox One owners. Oh, did I mention I they brought back the weapon wheel?
Let it Die
Suda 51 teaming up with PlayStation is a huge win for Sony in my book. His work is known for its over-the-top charm, gore and humor. Odd combination, I know. Let it Die has been described as a survival-horror brawler and during Sony's E3 presentation depicted demonic looking individuals dismembering one another. Each player had a name and either hp or experience meters over their heads and it looks like customization will probably play an important role. Sony is billing the game as free-to-play so it will definitely be online. It's hard to tell how players will interact outside of killing each other but hopefully Suda51's touch on the game will be pronounced as always. We should learn more in the near future as it is slated for a 2015 release.
The Order: 1886
To be completely honest, it wasn't going to take much for The Order: 1886 to impress me. I love the universe and mythology Ready at Dawn has created and I wanted to see it flourish. As I pointed out in my Sony E3 preview, people have been down on The Order recently. Sony needed to show gameplay that displayed not only the pretty graphics but add depth to the story too. In the short piece they chose for E3, Galahad is under attack by one of the previously unseen half breeds and he's scared. Ready at Dawn has made a point of showing that while the members of The Order are powerful, they aren't invincible. This will be an interesting dynamic to explore and I hope they do so in subsequent demos. Although the recent delay is disappointing, this game can be a knockout for PS4 if they take the time to polish it. I'm more excited than ever.
Chris "WildCardCorsair" Garcia
While it“s generally hard to describe something like Splatoon, I think I“ve come across the perfect analogy. You start with one part arena shooter, add one part Jet Set Radio, throw in a couple pinches of kawaii animu, and you“ve got Splatoon! Your squid-shifting self only has to paint as much of the floor in your team“s color to win, but the enemy“s color of paint hurts you so you“ll need to paint over it as much as possible in order to not die. As I sorta mentioned earlier, you can also turn into a squid which is not only adorable, but allows you to move quicker, recharge your paint (ink), and hide from the enemy. If you don“t have a smile on your face while playing Splatoon, you aren“t human.
Starwhal: Just The Tip
-PC, PlayStation 3-
I almost didn“t play Starwhal: Just the Tip but I“m really really glad I did. It“s a downloadable title, out for PC now, but coming also to the PS3, via PSN. The premise is simple. You are a narwhal, a space narwhal to be exact, and it is your goal to use that horn to stab other space narwhals in their exposed hearts for glory and honor (not really, but probably). The game is totally insane, simple, easy to learn, and most of all fun for up to four players local co-op. It“s basically like the 80“s did so much coke and acid they exploded on your PS3 and formed the perfect party game. The game also gives me the perfect excuse to ask strangers if they want to play â€œJust the tip.â€
-PlayStation 4, PS Vita-
If you“ve played Velocity Ultra for PS3 or Vita, you already know that it“s awesome. If you haven“t, you should go do that. Seriously. Velocity 2X is the sequel that we deserve, and the sequel we need right now, but we“ll have to wait a little longer. The game revolves around the ace test pilot Lt. Kai Tana, who due to spoilery reasons, now finds herself in a very unfamiliar part of space. She“ll have to put the teleport-capable Quarp Jet to good use, sure, but this time she“ll also have to get her hands dirty in person. Velocity 2X features new, completely gorgeous sidescrolling levels in which Kai Tana will have to strut her stuff sans ship. Everything about this game is impressive from the level design, the mechanics for both shooting and platforming, and even the breathtaking environments.
Which games impressed you the most during E3? Let us know in the comments below!