E3 2018 is less than a week away. Here's everything we're most excited to see at gaming's biggest expo.
The 2018 Electronic Entertainment Expo – or E3, as most know it – takes place next week in Los Angeles, and it's where we're likely to get a glimpse at some of the biggest games coming later this year and beyond.
Of course, some companies have already jumped the gun with their announcements in an attempt to beat the E3 hype train… or to simply confirm leaks instead of letting speculation run rampant. We're gearing up to cover the show again, and we already have a list of the games we're most excited to see, and hopefully play, next week.
Eager to see what's on the horizon? These are the biggest games we know about so far that will definitely be at E3 2018, as well as a few rumoured titles that we're crossing our fingers for.
Bethesda blew a few minds last week with the official announcement of Fallout 76, a new entry in the post-apocalyptic open-world role-playing series. But at this point, we don't know that much about the game – other than it takes place in one of gaming's favourite settings.
Kotaku's sources suggest that Fallout 76 won't be exactly like past entries, such as 2015's acclaimed Fallout 4. Instead of a single-player RPG, they suggest that it will instead be an online multiplayer, survival-focused game with base-building elements. We'll have to wait and see what's shown next week, but it's a pretty exciting proposition all the same.
ASSASSIN'S CREED ODYSSEY
Ubisoft wisely took a year off after an annual grind wore down the Assassin's Creed franchise, and last year's Assassin's Creed Origins felt solidly rejuvenated as a result. That said, it looks like we might be back to yearly releases, as Ubisoft just confirmed that Assassin's Creed Odyssey will debut at E3 this year.
After a photo of a promotional keychain (of all things!) leaked, Ubisoft went ahead and made Odyssey official with a quick teaser video – and both appear to show Ancient Greek soldier garb. Will Greece be the big open-world setting this time around? We'll find out next week, along with some sense of whether it's coming this year or in 2019.
SUPER SMASH BROS. FOR SWITCH
It's happening! Easily the most widely-demanded game for the Switch, a new Super Smash Bros. game will be fully revealed at E3. And it'll be playable too, since they're bringing out several of the world's best competitive Smash players for a tournament.
Nintendo dropped the news a few months back with an epic tease, which confirmed that ink-slinging Splatoon characters will be added to the roster – but other than that, we don't know a lot about what new features will define this particular Smash. Die-hards surely hope it's like the old-school, fan-favourite GameCube edition, but there's probably no pleasing everyone. We know it's hitting Switch sometime this year, though.
THE LAST OF US PART II
It's been a little while since we've heard anything new about Naughty Dog's next massive PlayStation 4 exclusive, but with a 2019 release likely, we'll probably get a lot more details about The Last of Us Part II at E3 next week.
Part II takes place some time after the original PS3/PS4 game, with Ellie and Joel still alive and other characters dealing with a world of hurt. The trailers make this sequel look super grim – unsettlingly so in the last one (above) – but between this and Uncharted, Naughty Dog rarely ever disappoints.
There have been a few good Spider-Man games over the years – and there have been some very bad ones, as well. We're keeping our fingers crossed that Sony's PlayStation 4-exclusive game will be the former, especially since it's coming from the vaunted team at Insomniac Games.
They're best known for Ratchet & Clank, but they also made the super-fun Sunset Overdrive, a loose open-world action game with incredible movement. Sounds like a killer template for Spider-Man. Early trailers looked a little too cinematic to really seem like legitimate gameplay, but the more and more we see, the more we're hopeful that Insomniac will nail this original take on the wall-crawler. It's due out on 7 September.
POKÉMON: LET'S GO
Pokémon is finally coming to Nintendo Switch, and… well, this isn't the traditional handheld-style adventure that we know and love. Instead, it's a new game co-developed with Pokémon Go maker Niantic and inspired by (and connectable to) the mobile sensation.
Pokémon: Let's Go looks like a streamlined take on the classic experience, including a world map and creature collection but simplifying the capture process, with a ball-tossing mechanic similar to what's seen in Pokémon Go. In any case, it's sure to be a sensation, especially with separate Pikachu and Eevee editions available when Let's Go hits Switch on 16 November.
EA already provided a hefty supply drop of Battlefield V details a couple weeks back, and suffice it to say, we can't wait to tear into 64-player battles in the series' return to World War II.
It's well-worn territory for first-person shooters, but Battlefield V hopes to unearth new tales with its War Stories campaign missions, which were great in Battlefield 1. Also, the multiplayer side of things will be enhanced with the new Grand Operations mode, which spans multiple maps in a single session, plus the game rewards players who stick to a crew and fight together. We'll see this one release on 19 October for PS4, Xbox One, and PC.
The BioWare brand is legendary, but last year's Mass Effect Andromeda earned mixed reactions and was quickly abandoned in the wake of technical issues, with future DLC cancelled. Given that, Anthem has even more on its shoulders as it attempts to restore goodwill with fans.
We got our first look at Anthem at last year's E3, as EA showed a Destiny-esque cooperative shooter experience with awesome-looking exosuits, plenty of multiplayer gunplay, and a lot of entertaining chaos. Since then, the game has been delayed into early 2019, but we're expecting to get a much better look this time around. And seriously, EA, take your time – it'll be a tall task to beat Destiny, let alone appease anyone burned by Andromeda.
CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS 4
Black Ops is back, and Call of Duty's best current sub-series is making some big changes to how the franchise works. Most obviously, it's ditching the traditional, cinematic single-player campaign – which might be disappointing to some fans.
But if you're big on multiplayer shootouts, then you'll probably be pretty pleased with this lineup. In addition to three separate Zombies co-op campaigns on day one, Black Ops 4 will also include Blackout, the series' take on massive battle royale sensations like Fortnite and PUBG. And the classic multiplayer battles will also see some major tweaks, including health bars and absolutely zero jetpacks or wall-running shenanigans. Black Ops 4 ships on 12 October for PS4, Xbox One, and PC.
As well as games we know are coming, we're also expecting to see some huge announcements at E3, with games like Gears of War 5 and a new Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell rumoured. We're also hoping to see Nintendo take the wraps off of Metroid Prime 4 for Switch, which was announced last year.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider should show a lot more ahead of its autumn release, plus we're hoping to finally see what's happening with the long-delayed Crackdown 3 for Xbox One and PC. Hideo Kojima's Death Stranding should be about ready to show itself to the world beyond just super-weird teaser trailers, and Sony's Days Gone will probably be prominently featured ahead of a 2019 release.
Bethesda's Rage 2 was recently announced for an early 2019 release, so that will no doubt appear at E3, plus Ubisoft's new Division sequel ought to be shown. There will be plenty more games, of course, including Kingdom Hearts III, Beyond Good & Evil 2, and hopefully a load of new Nintendo Switch games.
Be sure to check back next week, when we'll be picking favourites and sharing trailers, new details and as many first plays as we can get our hands on.