Here we are, just a few weeks out from the biggest week in gaming. It’s time for the major publishers to put on a show and show almost everything they’ve been working on, whether it be things we already know about or surprises that we may or may not have expected. Everyone has that one game or maybe even a few games that they can’t wait to see at the show, and I’m no different. Granted, I’m actually chopping the list down a bit to keep it from getting too long, but if I didn’t I’d be here all night and I really need to sleep at some point, so lets just get this show on the road.
1) Metroid Prime 4
The Nintendo Switch is on the market and doing pretty well for itself all things considered, and Reggie Fils-Aime teased back in January after the Switch reveal event that we’d hear something about the more or less dormant Metroid series sometime between then and January 2018. While we’re barely halfway through 2017, everyone will already be looking towards 2018 to see what it has in store for them. The Switch especially needs to make sure that it has a steady stream of high profile titles ready to go so that players don’t wait too long for their next Nintendo fix. Having a new Metroid game primed for an early 2018 release would be one way to get people excited and buy a Switch over the holiday season in preparation.
Recent rumors have been circulating, suggesting that the in-development Metroid title is in fact Metroid Prime 4 which is being developed at Retro Studios. I’ll definitely be on board if this is true and I hope they take some risks in the storytelling department like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild did.
2) Final Fantasy VII Remake
This year is a weird one for Square Enix. It’s the 20th anniversary of Final Fantasy VII and the 30th anniversary of Final Fantasy as a whole, but it’s only been about 6 or 7 months since Final Fantasy XV released. By that same token, Kingdom Hearts 2.8 and Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 released earlier this year and catching everyone up to speed for Kingdom Hearts III which is way overdue. So the real question is which game will win the release date roulette? I’m gonna place my bet on Final Fantasy VII Remake out of bias. I love Kingdom Hearts, but VII Remake actually seems closer to the finish line somehow. It got the above promotional image, two new screenshots, there’s a trailer for the game already done, and it’s been mentioned that voice recording is in full swing and that’s typically only something that happens when a game nears the end of its dev cycle since the script is more or less complete save for the occasional tweak or rewrite. It just feels more primed for a big marketing campaign. That doesn’t mean KHIII can’t have a simultaneous marketing campaign since Square also stoked those fires like I mentioned before, but I don’t know, I just have a gut feeling we’ll see the first Final Fantasy VII Remake installment this year and KHIII next year.
(Author’s Update 5/29/17: Recent news has thrown my original release date estimation into more question than perhaps it already was. While I don’t take Square Enix hiring new additions to the team as evidence that it’s far out from release since that could be staff meant for Part II, the appointment of a new lead developer and bringing the entire game in-house does change things. This likely means that extensive changes will be made to the game while not entirely throwing out what they already have. So if anything, I’d revise my estimate from late 2017, to late 2018. And in the 2017 slot I’d put the PS4 release of Dissidia Final Fantasy as the anniversary title.)
3) State of Decay 2
I’ll be completely honest with you, I wish I had something else to get excited about from the Xbox line-up that we know of, but I’m not all that interested in Sea of Thieves or Crackdown 3 and since there’s no Scalebound or sign of Fable’s return, I’m excited for State of Decay 2. I need a good zombie fix, plain and simple. Valve won’t give me Left 4 Dead 3, I don’t care for DayZ, H1Z1, or 7 Days to Die, and Overkill’s The Walking Dead was delayed so State of Decay 2 it is. I like the first one so I’m hoping this one expands on that a lot.
4) Pokemon Switch
Look, I don’t care one way or the other whether or not you like Pokken Tournament, but it showed what Pokemon can look like with a good ‘ole HD spitshine. It doesn’t really matter to me what Pokemon games are set to hit store shelves this fall, be it a combined version of Sun & Moon ala Emerald or Platinum, remakes of Diamond and Pearl, or(and this is a pipe dream) remakes of Red and Green/Blue, it just needs a Switch version. I don’t expect Game Freak to jump ship entirely right off the bat and leave all those juicy 3DS sales behind, but I at least want to know that they’re going to throw their weight behind the Switch. They were already looking to hire people with experience in Wii U level graphics, so that’s already an indication that they’ve got something Switch related up their sleeves. I don’t think it’s a Colosseum-esque game, I’m in the camp that believes they’ll throw the mainline titles on the Switch, and E3 will be the perfect place to make that splash. Lets face it, May is pretty much over at this point with just a week and a half left and they’re running out of time to announce this years games. My money is on Nintendo saving it for E3.
5) Detroit: Become Human
I love Heavy Rain, and I love what I played of Beyond: Two Souls. David Cage and Quantic Dream have a very unique style that not many developers attempt. It’s a blend of game and movie. You make decisions and watch as the story unfolds before you. Sometimes you get to interact more with your environment, and sometimes you just sit back and wait for a prompt to appear. It’s not for everyone, but damn if I’m not a sucker for pretty games and engaging stories. Sign me up for a game that looks like it has the potential to be something great. I’m hoping for a 2017 release date personally. They’ve had this game cooking for 4 years by this point so it should be just about ready.
(Author’s Note: I decided to include two trailers here because Detroit: Become Human looks to be told from multiple perspectives, but only one is featured in each trailer, so I thought it best to include both in order to not just show off both perspectives, but also the amount of choice in the gameplay featured in the second trailer.)
6) Star Wars: Battlefront 2 (2017)
I was very disappointed with the previous Battlefront game. When DICE took over, everyone rejoiced because the developer we wanted on the game got it. We WANTED a Battlefront game that played like a Battlefield game because the two were so similar. Just tweak some aspects of the gameplay and give us a proper Battlefront 3 with a fancy coat of paint... they did not do that. It was definitely authentic and felt like Star Wars... but it did not feel like Battlefront. I was very disappointed in myself for not only paying full price for the game, but also buying the season pass even at a discount.
Luckily, the next game looks to be everything I wanted it to be. It now includes the prequels and sequels which greatly expands the variety found in the multiplayer, it has a singleplayer campaign which definitely looks interesting, and it has space battles! I never thought that last one would make me so happy, but it really does. It’s just an overall bigger game than the first one and that is nothing but good. It’s everything the previous game should have been. Now they simply need to keep my attention until the fall.
7) Call of Duty: WWII
Oh World War II, how I’ve missed you. I just can’t get into modern games and when it comes to sci-fi not everything catches my attention. But World War II will always have my attention. By its very nature it is dark, gritty, and human. I love the aesthetics and the stories and Call of Duty: WWII, despite being more focused than previous entries when it comes to the nations involved, looks to be even more of what I loved and what I’ve missed since they disappeared in favor of modern shooters. The teaser image that was released for the new Zombies mode also gives me pause and makes me think. It seems... different. We don’t have gameplay or graphics to go with it, but something feels like it’ll be different than the Zombies we’ve grown used too. Hopefully it lives up to that expectation.
8) Destiny 2
Whenever I mention Destiny, it’s always with distaste because the first game just did not live up to my expectations and felt like way too much of a loot-a-thon. I don’t care how rare your gear is or what color it is, it’s just a gun to me and they should all work the same way. But that was the least of my problems with the game. My main gripe was with the story, or rather, what extremely little there was at launch. So it is with a big smile on my face that I say I am excited for Destiny 2 after that reveal last week. The story is there in full, grimoire cards are gone, and it’s something of a soft reboot which means everyone is back to square one again which will let me slide in without feeling like I’m late to the party. Granted, I’ll probably never socialize, solo the story, then never touch the game again, but if I get my money’s worth out of the story, I’ll be satisfied with the purchase.
9) South Park: The Fractured, But Whole
It’s South Park. Do you really want me to go on a tangent about why this game will be great? Seriously?
- Days Gone
- God of War IV
- Death Stranding
- Assassin’s Creed
- Kingdom Hearts III
- Shenmue III
- Forza Motorsport 7
- Xenoblade Chronicles 2
- Super Mario Odyssey
- Fire Emblem Switch
- Half-Life 3
- Left 4 Dead 3
- Team Fortress 3
- Portal 3