The Best Games of E3 2018

The Best Games of E3 2018

Every year tens of thousands of game professionals and fans assemble in Los Angeles to see what's coming up in the world of gaming. That's right, E3 is here. After a weekend of announcements, surprises, and first-looks and with the convention in full swing, we picked the games we're most excited for. From the latest installments of established franchises to exciting new IP, here is the Best of E3 2018:

 destiny 2, nathan fillion, forsaken,

Destiny 2: Forsaken

I have never been so angry at a 90 second teaser. I always hated Uldren Sov but this takes the cake. In September, an army of angry Guardians will descend upon the Reef and rain fury on the Awoken Prince and his army of Fallen. The new Gambit mode looks like some of the best non-raid content Bungie has made for Destiny, and the potential of having an entire playspace dedicated to the raid and the end game content is tantalizing. Destiny 2 fans were probably going to play this anyways (most of the TFS Guardians are), but now there is a real fire driving us, which positions Destiny 2: Forsaken to potentially be the best story explicitly covered in the Destiny universe. #JusticeForCayde

-Harrison Brockwell

Release Date: September 4, 2018

 Spider-Man, 

Spider-Man

The pairing of Insomniac and the web slinger is a match made in heaven, and everything we've seen from this game so far suggests this is the Spider-Man fans have been waiting for. It seems to combine an enhanced version of the open-world web swinging from 2004's Spider-Man 2 with combat similar to that of the Arkham games. And with a writing team comprised of comic creators including Dan Slott and Christos Gage, it promises to have the most accurate portrayal of Spidey we have seen in a video game. It was already known that Mister Negative would be the primary villain, but the new gameplay trailer reveals that the Sinister Six will also come into play. We don't have long to wait to find out what other surprises the game has to offer, as the game is only three short (or long) months away.

- Sam Van Haren

Release Date: September 7, 2018

 super smash bros, super smash bros ultimate, nintendo,

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Super Smash Bros. is one of the biggest series in gaming, each new installment is looked at with excitement levels that approach frenzy. Now the series is coming to the Nintendo Switch and it's bringing the biggest roster of fighters ever. It was announced that every fighter in the franchise's history will be available this time around. All of the expected Nintendo characters will be there along with third party characters like Sonic, Snake, Ryu, and Pac-Man. New characters include Splatlings from the Splatoon series and the long requested Ripley, the main antagonist of the Metroid series. All that, plus unlockable costumes, dozens of stages, and true high-def graphics, suggest that the title is no misnomer.

- Sam Van Haren

Release Date: December 7, 2018

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Resident Evil 2

The game that made the Resident Evil franchise a household name is finally getting the remake treatment. The original Resident Evil’s remake for the Nintendo GameCube featured a significant graphical, a gameplay overhaul, and brand new elements to throw off even the die-hard fans, making it the definitive version of the classic game and perhaps the series’ high point in terms of horror. Fans have been clamoring for years for the second entry in the franchise to get the same attention, and from the looks of it, it’s getting even more. Chris Redfield’s sister, Claire, and rookie cop Leon S. Kennedy’s trip through a zombie-overrun Raccoon City has been completely remade from the ground up, eschewing static camera angles and painted backdrops for fully three-dimensional environments and Resident Evil 4’s over-the-shoulder gameplay. From the one trailer we’ve seen, Resident Evil 2 remake looks to be doing the beloved game justice, and will be looking to keep fans on edge all over again.

- Marcus Irving

Release Date: January 29, 2019

 frozen, kingdom hearts, idina menzel, haley joel osment, disney, square enix,

Kingdom Hearts III

This year, Kingdom Hearts III fans were treated to not one, but two entirely new trailers (and then one slightly edited one). I am a huge fan of this series, so I will try and parse my many many thoughts here. The next two worlds announced for KH3 were Frozen and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, which are not too terribly surprising but welcome additions to the game. Everything we have seen of the combat looks excellent, and the game looks, both graphically and artistically, as gorgeous as ever. But to be quite honest, as a diehard fan, the most intriguing aspects of the trailers are the overall story implications for the series. Kingdom Hearts III is shaping up to be a downer of a finale, and the fact that we saw a yellow-eyed Aqua shakes me to my very core. If Aqua has been turned by Xehanort, the main villain of the series, then that leaves Sora and company in dire straits. A lot of the fanbase assumed Aqua would be a key asset in the fight against the Seekers of Darkness, and for that to be cast in doubt even for a second is simultaneously hype-inducing and anger-inducing. I’m expecting at least one actual main character to die in Kingdom Hearts III, but if it’s Aqua I might throw my PS4 out the window in rage. This game is gonna rule so hard guys. You have no idea. 

- Harrison Brockwell

Release Date: January 29, 2019

 death stranding, lea seydoux, norman reedus, hideo kojima,

Death Stranding

Sony has been showing this game off for years at this point, and I still have barely any idea what it is actually about. Trying to make sense of the actual narrative of these trailers has proven futile, but the one shown at the Sony’s conference this year provides some look at in engine gameplay. A lot of said gameplay involves Sam, the player character who also happens to be Norman Reedus, walking across various gorgeously desolate landscapes with massive boxes on his back, like a futuristic Amazon Prime deliveryman. However, in the second half of the trailer there is some stealth mechanics being shown, where the clicking light attached to Sam’s back illuminates some specters floating in the air, which kill Sam if they see him. These specters seem to have umbilical cords, which is very strange, but also creates more questions about the nature of the fetus in a jar that Sam is holding, and that Guillermo Del Toro has in a previous trailer. We still have no idea where Mads Mikkelsen fits into all of this, or how anything fits together, honestly, but a lot of the fun of Kojima’s games is the pre-release speculation. Whatever this turns out to be, I am confident that Kojima’s first post-Metal Gear, post-Konami game is going to be immensely strange, soaked in pseudo-Lynchian visuals, and a brain-bender of a good time. 

- Harrison Brockwell

Release Date: TBA

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Cyberpunk 2077

It’s been over 5 since Cyberpunk 2077 was first announced but we finally have a detailed look at the world of the hotly anticipated sci-fi RPG from CD Projekt Red. While the gameplay was shown only behind closed doors, the cinematic trailer that closed out the Xbox keynote gave us a glimpse at the ambitious world the Polish developers have been cooking up. Set in a neon-soaked dystopian Californian city, 2077 seems to draw its cuberpunk influences equally from Blade Runner and Ghost in the Shell. CDPR promises a seamless open-world, deep character customization, and a visceral first-person RPG experience. The Witcher III is one of the most ambitious RPGs ever made, so we have every reason to expect more greatness here. 

- Sam Van Haren

Release Date: TBA

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Ghost of Tsushima

Sucker Punch is one of my favorite studios. Their games, from the Sly Cooper series to the Infamous games, are always unique and interesting. We hadn't heard much from them since Infamous Second Son was released but we now know what they've been working one and oh boy is it exciting. Ghost of Tsushima is an epic, open-world samurai adventure that looks a beautiful as it does brutal. The color palette and lighting in the gameplay reveal is simply breathtaking. The combat seems to be as close to real-world accuracy of swordplay as you can get, focusing more on precision than button-mashing. This game is in fairly early stages of development, so expect it to show up at least one more E3 in the future. But by all accounts, it seems it will be worth the wait.

- Sam Van Haren

Release Date: TBA

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The Last of Us Part II 

Developer Naughty Dog’s Uncharted series had its grand swan song just last year, and now the way has been cleared for the sequel to their elevated zombie survival series to take the spotlight. The Last of Us is an exceptional gem in the survival horror genre, but I was a little disappointed when we learned that Joel and Ellie’s fairly self-contained story was going to continue. That said, the folks at Naughty Dog have proven themselves to be some of the best storytellers in the medium, and from the looks of it, the Part II narrative will be just as good, if not better than the first. Not much is known, but from early footage it appears that there has been a sizable time jump. Ellie has aged and has a girlfriend, Dina (played by Shannon Woodward), and somehow gets herself wrapped up with a violent cult. The graphic violence looks to be taken to a new extreme, pointing toward even darker themes and unnerving gameplay. - Marcus Irving

Release Date: TBA

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