My 9 Favorite Games from E3 2017

Another year, another E3 down in the books. This year’s event was jammed packed with games as Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, and the others hit us with trailer after trailer. Although the common consensus was that overall the conferences were somewhat underwhelming, there were still a lot of titles that managed to stand out from the crowd. Here are my favorite games from E3 2017.

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Anthem

While Bioware Montreal took over the development of Mass Effect: Andromeda, Bioware Edmonton focused their attention on creating a brand new IP. That brand new IP is a shared-world action RPG called Anthem, which was revealed during EA’s press conference. It wasn’t until Microsoft’s conference, however, that we finally got some real details and saw some gameplay.

In Anthem, you are a freelancer who has an arsenal of exosuits called Javelins. Using your Javelin, you’ll explore (either alone or with up to three friends) a large futuristic open world, brimming with wonder and peril. Based off of first impressions, many have described the game as Destiny, but with a Bioware narrative.

Will Anthem be a more story driven version of Destiny? We’ll have to see when it comes out. However, what really stood out to me was the vibrant, lush environments and the way you traverse seamlessly through these areas. The way the player switches at ease from flying, to diving, to dashing around the world looked really fun. Expect to see Anthem out for PS4, PC, and Xbox One in Fall 2018.

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Beyond Good & Evil 2

One of the biggest surprises of E3 2017 was the reveal of a brand new trailer for Beyond Good & Evil 2. If you’re like me, you have been begging Ubisoft to make this sequel ever since they showed the first trailer, which was revealed all the way back in 2008. Yeah, it has really been that long. With time comes change, and it looks like Beyond Good & Evil 2 is no exception.

Instead of continuing the adventures of Jade and Pey’j, BG&E2 will be a prequel that’s set a few generations before the first game. At the moment, it’s hard to say what kind of game BG&E2 will be, but we know it will ambitious. The revival of BG&E2 is exciting, but keep in mind, this was just another pre-rendered trailer. Unfortunately, we probably won’t see this game anytime soon.

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Super Mario Odyssey

With Mario’s new ability to possess everything around him, traveling to real world-like destinations, and dinosaurs, Super Mario Odyssey is shaping up to be one of the weirdest additions to the series yet. I mean, the trailers have even taught us that Mario isn’t human! Regardless, after watching the new trailer and demo Nintendo brought to E3, I have a good feeling that it may also end up being one of the most creative.

According to the positive feedback from the demo, it sounds like this game could become a contender for game of the year. We’ll be able to get our hands on Super Mario Odyssey on Oct. 27, 2017.

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Detroit: Become Human

We got a taste of Detroit: Become Human last year, but this year, we have new details and a brand new trailer that sheds light on the overarching story. The game takes place about 20 years into the future. Although advancements in technology have made androids nearly indistinguishable from humans, they are still treated as mere objects. This problematic dynamic between humans and androids has caused “deviant” androids to start an uprising.

In this game, you control three characters: Kara, Connor, and the newly introduced Markus. All three are androids and they will all have their own distinct storylines that will run parallel to each other over a four day period. Throughout the game, you’ll make decisions that will influence the story and may also impact the other characters.

The thing that I love about this game is the importance they put on decisions. Each decision forces you to think critically and can have real consequences in the future. This is probably the reason why the demo for this game resonated with me as much as it did. Also, the amount of detail put into each character and the environments they inhabit is incredible.

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Uncharted: The Lost Legacy

Nathan Drake’s days of treasure hunting may be over, but Chloe is just getting started. Uncharted: The Lost Legacy is a 10-hour long spin-off starring Chloe Frazer and Nadine Ross. The two will embark on an adventure to retrieve an ancient Indian artifact all while trying to avoid a ruthless warmonger who wants it for himself.

This will be the first Uncharted game to feature someone else other than the wise-cracking Nathan Drake. Since Chloe and Nadine take themselves a little more seriously than Drake, it’s expected that the tone of this game will be slightly different from the other games. Uncharted: The Lost Legacy will come out on August 22, 2017, for $40.

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The Last Night

I stumbled across this indie game last year and was blown away by its art style. Ever since then, I’ve been trying to stay up-to-date on the development of The Last Night. So I was pleasantly surprised when I saw the announcement trailer during Microsoft’s conference. Some people have begun comparing this cyberpunk sidescroller to something like Blade Runner. The Last Night will be available on Xbox One and PC in 2018.

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Spider-Man

We finally got some gameplay footage of Insomniac’s Spider-Man game and it looks amazing. Although the end of the trailer felt a bit like a QTE-fest, overall I liked what I saw. From what was shown, it looks like the player will have plenty of options on how to dispatch enemies. For example, you can either fight up close, set up traps, or use the environment to your advantage.

I also like that Insomniac chose to use Mr. Negative as a villain instead of a more well-known villain. It’s become painfully obvious to me that both superhero movies and games tend to focus on a small select group of that hero’s rogue gallery. Usually, the most popular villains that everyone already knows, e.g. Doctor Octopus or Green Goblin. So it’s nice to see other villains enter the spotlight every once and awhile. Spider-Man is PlayStation exclusive and will release sometime next year.

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A Way Out

If it wasn’t for the Beyond Good & Evil 2 trailer, this game would’ve been my biggest surprise of the show. Revealed during the EA press conference, A Way Out is a split-screen, co-op action-adventure game from the creator of Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons. The game focuses on the story of two convicts and their escape from prison.

What I found interesting about this game is that both characters can be in different places, doing their own thing, while their stories are told simultaneously. For example, player one could initiate a cutscene where they talk to a prison guard. While that player watches a cutscene, the other player can use that opportunity as a distraction and do things without the guard noticing.

What I saw of the game reminded me of something I’d expect to see from Naughty Dog, so I have high hopes for this title.

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Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle

Going into E3, we knew Ubisoft was going to announce a Mario and Rabbids crossover title. However, nobody knew what kind of game the title would be. We all had our suspicions, but no one expected to be told that the new game would be a turn-based tactical RPG.

Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle puts both companies mascots into a fun and colorful XCOM-like quest where Mario and the others must team up with Rabbids Heros in order to take back the kingdom from the mischievous Rabbids. Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle will be a Switch exclusive and will be available on August 29, 2017.

Honorable mentions:

Horizon Zero Dawn: The Frozen Wilds, Yoshi Switch, Observer, Dishonored: Death of the Outsider

Ninja Theory Announces Release Date for Hellblade Senua’s Sacrifice

On Monday, developer Ninja Theory teased us with news that an announcement would be coming today. As it turns out, that announcement was a definitive release date for their upcoming game, Hellblade Senua’s Sacrifice.

Announced back in 2014, Hellblade is an action game that focuses on the journey and mental state of its protagonist, Senua. Senua is a Celtic warrior who suffers from psychosis. Alone, she must embark on a very personal journey through a hellish landscape created by her own psychotic manifestations.

According to Ninja Theory, their goal with Hellblade was to bring the mid-sized game back by creating an independently developed game with AAA polish. Hellblade Senua’s Sacrifice is scheduled for release on August 8th, 2017. You can get the game for $29.99/€29.99/£24.99 on Steam, GOG, and PlayStation 4.

Leaked Screenshots Reveal Plans for Life is Strange Prequel

According to some leaked screenshots, it seems like we could be in store for a Life is Strange prequel in the near future.

The original Life is Strange, developed by Dontnod Entertainment and published by Square Enix, was widely considered a surprise hit in 2015. The game followed the adventures of Max Caulfield, a high school senior who discovers that she has the ability to rewind time. While the original game focused mainly on Max and her relationship with Chloe, it appears that this prequel will instead focus on Chloe and her relationship with Rachel.

The screenshots were found in this gallery that was anonymously uploaded to Imgur. There are nine images altogether, eight screenshots and one piece of branded concept art. You’ll also notice in the screenshots that this is a Chloe who has yet to dye her hair fully blue.

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If you remember, Dontnod took to Twitter no too long ago to celebrate Life is Strange selling over 3 million copies and to announce that they would be working on a second Life is Strange game. However, this prequel is not the game they were talking about. This prequel will actually be in the hands of the Denver studio, Deck Nine Games.

Previously known as Idol Minds, this development studio is best known for making games like Cool Boarders 3, Rally Cross 2, and Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal. Two days ago, the team announced that they will be rebranding as Deck Nine to signify their shift toward more narrative-focused games.