GAMES! from E3 2017

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E3 2017 is closed, but the conversation continues. I discussed the presentations from Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo, along with a handful of third-party publishers, last week, so this week will focus on the games. As I did last year, the first section is devoted to the games that excited me most, while the second half is for the games that peaked my interest for whatever reason.


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The games that threaten to turn me into a recluse who refuses to leave his house.

10. Mario & Luigi Superstar Saga + Bowser’s Minions
Nintendo 3DS | October 6, 2017

This barely made my list because, y’know, it’s a remake of a game I already played. I also didn’t immediately realize that they improved the graphics. In hindsight, it’s painfully obvious these aren’t Game Boy Advance graphics, but I watched the reveal unimpressed with the visual level until I compared it with the original game. That aside, I’m excited because Superstar Saga is charming and funny and, most importantly, isn’t bloated with unnecessary fluff. As long as Bowser’s Minions isn’t a time-killer forced on me, I’ll happily replay this one.

09. Yoshi (name subject to change)
Nintendo Switch | 2018

Truthfully, I’m not entirely sure what this is. It shares a similar aesthetic to Yoshi’s Story and Woolly World, Yoshi (name subject to change) is neither a traditional side-scroller nor 3D. Gameplay doesn’t appear demanding, and the benefits of viewing the stage from the reverse perspective isn’t immediately obvious. Treehouse footage had too much acting amazed because you’re able to see coins that were previously blocked from view. Yay? I sound pessimistic, but I’m hoping that the developer makes a good Yoshi game. There’s not nearly enough, so I’m including this game as my vote of support.

08. Metro Exodus
PC, PS4, XBO | 2018

I’ve played little of the Metro franchise despite owning the 2033/Last Light bundle, but Exodus was enough to break out my disk and run through a bit of 2033. The new game is a beauty, although it probably won’t look quite as nice on my standard Xbox One. Still, at least Exodus isn’t exclusive to the Xbox One X as I initially feared, so I look forward to scavenging around the Russian wasteland that apparently no longer requires a mask to survive the surface of. So, unlike in the Fallout franchise, things are apparently becoming better in the post-nuclear apocalypse world.

07. Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle
Nintendo Switch | August 29, 2017

Like everyone, I greeted the Mario/Rabbids crossover leak with the enthusiasm of a deceased dog, but reversed that opinion after getting an actual look at the gameplay. It’s a pretty transparent XCOM close, and half the cast I wouldn’t mind jettisoning (should be obvious who), but it should be obvious from how often I write about Fire Emblem that I enjoy strategy games. So making a strategy game where Mario catapults allies or travel through a warp pipe sounds neat. I’m still surprised that Shigeru Miyamoto allowed Mario to handle a gun-like weapon, but I suppose the plumber has been using fantasy firearms since the first Smash Bros.

06. Fire Emblem Warriors
Switch, 3DS | 2017

On one hand, Fire Emblem. On the other hand, hacking ‘n’ slashing gameplay seems like it’d get boring after five minutes. On the third hand, I’m a sucker for Fire Emblem. On the fourth hand, what predictable character reveals. Corrin, Xander, and Ryoma (from Fire Emblem Fates)? The only thing surprising about these three characters is that they picked the female Corrin instead of the male. I’m intend to buy Fire Emblem Warriors because I can’t not have every Fire Emblem game, but I don’t feel great about it. And hopefully I’m wrong and I totally enjoy the musou gameplay.

05. Uncharted: Lost Legacy
PlayStation 4 | August 22, 2017

My excitement is dependent on how many necks can I snap from the comfort of foliage. I loved taking the stealthy route in Uncharted 4, but hated the handful of firefights where enemies are aware of my location and toss an endless supply of explosives. Keep the stealth and I’m immediately on-board. It includes Chloe, one of my favorite Uncharted characters, and although I wasn’t the biggest fan of Nadine (she was an antagonist in the previous game, after all), it’s easy to imagine how the two characters will bounce off each other. Just keep the stealth.

04. Life Is Strange: Before The Storm
PC, PS4, XBO | August 31, 2017

There’s reasons for caution — new developer, new actress voicing Chloe — but I’m hoping for the best. I did prefer Max to Chloe, but that may be partly because I heard Max’s thoughts and therefore felt closer to the character than her rebellious friend. So controlling Chloe and hearing her thoughts as she evolves into the character we know in Life is Strange might make her more endearing. Max will return in a single episode (exclusive to the deluxe version), which begs the question of whether her voice actress Hannah Telle will return.

03. Dishonored: Death of the Outsider
PC, PS4, XBO | September 15, 2017

I loved Dishonored 2, but disappointing sales had me wondering if we’d see new content. Fortunately, Bethesda proved that they haven’t completely nixed the franchise with the reveal of Death of the Outsider, a $30 standalone title starring assassin-turned-boat captain Billie. Given that the Outsider referenced in the title is a mystical being who grants characters their supernatural abilities, it’s unclear if and how his death will come, but I’m looking forward to finding out when the game releases later this year.

02. Metroid: Samus Returns
Nintendo 3DS | September 15, 2017

I’m not going to fret about the developer… I’m not going to fret about the developer… I read, oh, a few remarks expressing worry that Samus Returns will be botched by developer MercurySteam, but it’s unlikely that Nintendo will allow them off the leash to mess up a franchise dear to many gamers (myself included). I mean, remember how much grief they got for announcing a Metroid Prime spin-off? Now imagine if we got a bad (or even mediocre) 2D Metroid. Footage and hands-on impressions are positive, so it’s doubtful that we have much to worry about.

01. Super Mario Odyssey
Nintendo Switch | October 27, 2017

Mario Odyssey looks fun before, but revealing Mario’s new ability to possess enemies, items, and, er, normal humans makes me more excited. And it releases in only a handful of months! I haven’t been so excited for a new Mario game (not counting spin-offs) since the under-appreciated Mario Sunshine, and I can’t wait to grab the game. I’ve little interest in the wedding-themed amiibo, however. They’re cute, I guess, but 8-bit Mario is still the best of the Mario-themed amiibo.


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The games that could theoretically turn me into a recluse, but still haven’t convinced me to quit my job and survive on pizza deliveries.

Anthem
PC, PS4, XBO | Fall 2018

BioWare already confirmed that Anthem is playable solo, but my interest depends entirely on whether I need an active Xbox Live Gold or PlayStation Plus account. Either way, BioWare’s mixture of Destiny and the Iron Man suit looks interesting, although it appears light on elements that the developer is known for, such as party members with personalities and histories. Is this a BioWare game or an Electronic Arts game developed by BioWare? That may sound identical, but it’s not.

Beyond Good & Evil 2
Platforms and Release Date Unknown

Ubisoft presented a stunning cinematic to officially re-unveil Beyond Good & Evil 2, but otherwise had little to show. We know that this is a prequel to the first Beyond Good & Evil, set before Jade’s birth, but we’re lacking a release date or supported consoles. Still, Beyond Good & Evil is a cult-classic for a reason, so hopefully director Michel Ancel is able to deliver a repeat performance and, with luck, attain greater success than the first game saw. I mean, it’d be nice to get a sequel once again starring Jade.

Ever Oasis
Nintendo 3DS | June 23, 2017

Ever Oasis releases the day after I publish this post, so reviews have likely been hitting the internet for a few days now [EDIT: Or not!], but how people take to this game is still a mystery as of when I write this. A demo is available, but it’s only a small taste. I’m hoping for a strong juggling between building up a village and tackling Zelda-like dungeons (Grezzo, the developer, was responsible for Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask on 3DS). We’ve seen so little of Ever Oasis that whether I’ll even buy it isn’t certain.

God of War
PlayStation 4 | 2018

We got our first look at a massive monster, as per God of War tradition, and this time it’s a serpent that rises from beneath the water and claims to offer its assistance. I expect Kratos to brutally disassemble the creature shortly thereafter since, y’know, it’s God of War. I’m not completely sold on Dad of War (that’s how the cool kids on the internet refer to it), but I’m still far more interested than I was for any previous God of War games. The combat looks more brutal — perhaps the result of pulling the camera closer to Kratos — and the difficult relationship between Kratos and his son Atreus should make for an interesting story.

Metroid Prime 4
Switch | ???

Yes, I’m among the people who squealed at the existence of Metroid Prime 4, even though Nintendo only showed a logo. Information is lacking, but we’re aware that a new development team is tackling the project instead of Retro Studios, the group responsible for the original Prime trilogy. (Sadly, Retro is still MIA.) Hm, a popular first-person sci-fi trilogy gets a new sequel from a different developer…? Why does that sound familiar? Well, I expect Nintendo to have better luck when Metroid Prime 4 than Microsoft and 343 Industries did with Halo 4.

Miitopia
Nintendo 3DS | July 28, 2017

Take four Miis onto a lighthearted turn-based RPG adventure isn’t a terrible hook, and Miitopia is looking like a quaint and entertaining game. The demo that Nintendo released showcases the beginning and allows you to build your party, but the best part is the obsurdity of seeing certain Mii characters as NPCs and monsters. For instance, Heath Ledger’s Joker (from The Dark Knight) was the welcoming greeter in the first town. I cast the late Satoru Iwata as the helpful Great Sage, which felt somewhat appropriate. And the evil Dark Lord? Doctor Eggman from the Sonic franchise. Because why not?

Sea of Thieves
Xbox One | 2018

I should probably look towards Ubisoft’s Skull and Bones for my pirate fix, but Rare’s Sea of Thieves appears the more appealing thanks to the cartoony visuals and focus on cooperative thieving. That said, since online isn’t my bag right now, buying the game and going sea-fairing isn’t likely. (Besides, how many people do I know with an Xbox One? Not many.) But the idea of exploring the world with a group of buddies on our own pirate ship sounds so fun.

Shadow Of The Colossus
PlayStation 4 | 2018

One of two major surprises that Sony showed, Shadow of the Colossus appears from what little we’ve seen a faithful remake. Those massive titans seem all the more imposing with modern visuals, but it’s the castle/shrine environment impressed. I never did buy the Ico/Shadow of the Colosssus HD remaster, so I’m up for a this remake. And, y’know, an Ico remake seems inevitable, right?

South Park: The Fractured But Whole
PC, PS4, XBO | October 17, 2017

Okay, I gotta buy South Park: The Stick of Truth now. I missed that game before, but seeing The Fractured But Whole really makes me interested in grabbing The Stick and playing– Okay, this sad display of innuendo must stop. What I wrote wasn’t untrue, however. The South Park cast tackling superheroes looks funny enough to push me into buying the first game, and that’s something that doesn’t happen often. (Yes, the first game is a pre-order bonus, but I’d rather play the game sooner in preparation for the sequel.)

Xenoblade Chronicles 2
Switch | Holiday 2017

Just when I thought I could look past the ugly, blue-colored jumpsuit thing worn by Rex, we’re given a look at Pyra, his companion/sword/presumably his love-interest. She wears little clothing and features a considerable bust, ensuring her place in plenty of pornographic images. I should focus more on the game (I’ve little doubt it’ll be good), but I hate these character designs so damn much. And because I haven’t watched enough of the Treehouse footage yet to comment.


 

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