EEDAR at E3: Our Inaugural E3 Awards, and more of our favorite games!
EEDAR was back at E3 this year – in addition to our salespeople and analysts having meetings all week, we also sent a busload of employees up to Los Angeles to see all of the latest games at the biggest event in gaming.
This year, for the first time, EEDAR gave out our own awards, too! Our employees chose five different games and publishers to receive our inaugural E3 awards (and we saw a lot of other things we really liked as well).
For our Most Anticipated Game, we picked a title that everyone wanted to see: The Elder Scrolls VI! Unfortunately, there wasn’t much to show off beyond a short teaser trailer at the Bethesda event (which featured one shot of a vast green mountain wilderness), but just the thought of a Bethesda RPG that’s bigger and better than Skyrim has us dragon shouting from the rooftops!
For the Media Darling Award, we picked what most folks agreed was the game of the show: Cyberpunk 2077. CD Projekt RED’s followup to The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt looked very impressive in the reveal trailer, and a 50-minute demo just off the show floor featured a vast futuristic world full of interesting people to talk with, fight with, and even romance. With tons of customization options, compelling combat and exploration in first-person perspective, and even a Blade Runner-worthy vehicle to drive, we’re super excited to watch Cyberpunk 2077 as it heads through development towards release.
Our Best Booth award went to Ubisoft – their booth was big and open, with a great amphitheater for presentations, and a circle of excellent titles on display, including the pirate simulator Skull and Bones, the Greece-focused Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, the Starfox-starring Starlink: Battle for Atlas, new content for For Honor, and the exciting multiplayer sequel Tom Clancy’s The Division 2. Ubisoft has been on a great run lately, and their booth at E3 was well-designed and packed full of great demos.
Our award for Biggest Streaming Presence at the show was of course Epic Games’ runaway hit Fortnite. It’s been one of the biggest streaming titles of the year, and Epic’s E3 booth looked great (with a gigantic lit up Fortnite sign and even a replica bus). The game was being streamed all over the show floor – we saw it at Epic’s booth, at the Twitch and Mixer booths, and on a few other screens as well. It was even outside the convention center: Epic hosted a big Pro-Am tournament at Los Angeles’ Banc Stadium, and they hosted a great afterparty, too. Biggest Streaming Presence is a well-deserved award for a game that’s picked up plenty of praise already.
Finally, for our The Darkhorse Award (designed to call out an interesting title off the beaten path), we picked Devolver Digital’s Metal Wolf Chaos XD. If you’re not familiar, Metal Wolf Chaos XD is a 2004 mech combat Xbox title developed by FromSoftware (the makers of Dark Souls and Bloodbourne, who also had a big presence at the show), and it’s being re-released with upgraded visuals for modern consoles by Devolver later this year. We love the idea of polishing this old gem for a wider audience, and we’re big fans of Devolver too (they’ve been having a great couple of years publishing excellent games like Hatoful Boyfriend, Downwell, and Absolver).
But that’s not all! We saw plenty of other great games at the show this year, too.
Editor Melissa Spiers said what a lot of us were thinking: She liked Cyberpunk 2077 a lot. “I have a lot of faith in CD Projekt RED,” she said, “and it looks like they are doing the setting justice.” It was interesting to see how different Cyberpunk looks from The Witcher, but it does seem very faithful to its inspiration, the pen and paper RPG by Mike Pondsmith called Cyberpunk 2020.
Senior Analyst Matt Diener liked seeing Square Enix’s Shadow of the Tomb Raider – he says the traversal, combat, and setting all looked really interesting, fun to play, and were very faithful to the longstanding franchise. Shadow is set to finish off the latest Lara Croft trilogy in September 2018.
Our CEO Rob Ligouri gets to call out two very different titles: He liked Nintendo’s Mario Tennis Aces and Ubisoft’s The Division 2. Mario Tennis Aces puts the racket back in Mario’s hands for a tennis game that will be fun to play with friends, and The Division 2 is a gritty postapocalyptic Shooter RPG sequel that will also be fun to play with friends!
Analyst Leandro Fouria enjoyed seeing more about Super Smash Bros. Ultimate – the upcoming Nintendo Switch title has everything a Smash fan could want. “It’s a complete greatest hits album to wrap up almost 20 years,” he said.
Director of Insights Sartori Bernbeck liked Sony’s short demo of Ghost of Tsushima. The open world game set in 13th-century Japan looks super stylish, like getting to walk around (and duel with swords) inside an actual samurai film.
Senior Designer Chris Biggin liked another title that was really popular at the show: Insomniac’s Spider-man for the PS4. The web slinging looked excellent, and the new trailer (featuring most of the Sinister Six escaping from the Raft) is a must-watch if you haven’t seen it yet.
Head of Consumer Research Heather Nofziger was thrilled to see that Kingdom Hearts 3 was “FINALLY” on the show floor. It’s a great mix of Square Enix RPG and Disney charm, wrapped up in a big, colorful package. We’re looking forward to the long-awaited release in January.
Data Specialist Anthony Silva enjoyed seeing Resident Evil 2 – he’s got fond memories of that game, and it was great to see Capcom bringing it back with some new updated graphics.
And I (Mike Schramm, Manager of Game Eval) was most excited about a game we don’t know anything about yet: Bethesda’s Starfield. It’s the next big singleplayer RPG from the team that made Fallout 4 and Skyrim, it’s Bethesda’s first new IP in 25 years, and it’s set in space! Bethesda didn’t show much more than a logo yet, but that’s ok – we’ve got plenty of other great games to play in the meantime.
And that’s a wrap on E3 2018! EEDAR had a great time at the show (thanks to our friends at the ESA for running things so smoothly), and we’re sending our congratulations to everyone who came out and showed something cool. If these past few days were any indication, it’s going to be one great year for gaming!