E3 2018 is on our doorstep and it’s violently knocking on our door, trying desperately to get our attention. Yes E3, we know you’re there. No you can’t come in yet, stop leaking all over my porch.
One of the attendees who have become a staple for E3 is Bethesda. And even though they may have less developers working under them than some of the other big publishers, they never shy away from making surprising announcements. So let’s take a look at what we can expect and what we hope to see at Bethesda’s E3 2018 press conference.
What we can expect:
We already know about Fallout 76, the new Bethesda developed game that is set to be a spin-off from the traditional series. It was revealed about a week ago with the trailer posted above. What we don’t know is too much more about the game. If rumours and anonymous sources are to be believed then the game will be an online survival RPG, similar to that of DayZ or Rust. With fort building mechanics already implemented into Fallout 4 and an appropriate setting already established, it makes some semblance of sense for the series to move further into that direction.
Fun fact, Vault 76 was canonically opened only 20 years after the bombs dropped rather than the 200+ years that Fallout 3 and 4 are set. Get ready for a heavily radiated and hostile wasteland.
We also know about RAGE 2 already. The game was leaked in a Walmart listing and then teased by Bethesda immediately thereafter. It was then officially revealed with a teaser and gameplay trailer.
Whilst not every gamer will be all that excited for this release, we know that the developers working on the game are id Software (DOOM) and Avalanche Studios (Max Max). With their pedigrees well established I actually have high hopes for this release. It will surely be more fleshed out and complete than the first game, right?
With those 2 big games out of the way we are left with a few other tasty morsels. No doubt we will hear more about Quake Champions at E3 2018 which has been in Steam Early Access for quite some time now. Hopefully a release date will be given or more information for upcoming updates. It’s an arena shooter exclusive to PC that mixes up the standard formula by introducing character abilities (which can be turned off in certain modes). Fun and frenetic gameplay is key to an arena shooter’s longevity so we will have to just wait and see if this one sticks.
There’s also The Elder Scrolls Online, an MMO by ZeniMax Online Studios which must be doing fairly well for itself because the game continues to get updates. Maybe they are holding on to a big expansion for the game to reveal at E3?
Last but certainly not least is The Elder Scrolls Legends which is a card game set in the Elder Scrolls universe. Much like ESO the game has been receiving fairly frequent attention and updates so we may see focus head in this direction.
What we’re hoping for
Now we get to the fun part of all of this, the speculation. With The Evil Within 2 releasing late last year, it may be too soon to hear about Tango Gameworks’ next project. With that said, I’m ready for a surprise. Also releasing late last year was Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus. Once again it may be too soon to know about Machine Games’ next project although this time I have more hope. Wolfenstein: The New Order released in 2014 and it’s standalone expansion, Wolfenstein: The Old Blood, released in 2015. Sticking to this schedule it’s very possible we see a Wolfenstein II standalone expansion announced.
Similarly, we may see what Arkane Studios is now up to, seeing as their last release was Prey in early 2017. Rumours are abuzz for a Prey standalone expansion with the developers themselves joining in on the fun and teasing something related to the moon. A lunar expansion for an awesomely atmospheric RPG? Sign me up!
Do we really know what’s out there? pic.twitter.com/TIByM1O738
— Prey (@PreyGame) March 2, 2018
I think it’s also a safe bet to assume that Bethesda aren’t done with Virtual Reality. Continuing to port their big games to VR devices is no doubt a nice surprise for those who wield the new technology. Could we also see some more Switch port announcements?
The next one is a big gamble. DOOM was a huge critical success when it launched back in 2016. The game was an awesome throwback to FPS games of yonder with a more refined feel to it. Is it possible we are going to see DOOM II? Personally I doubt it. We already know id Software are developing Quake Champions and RAGE 2, and whilst they are a big team I would doubt another project would be in anything other than a concept stage. With that said, I highly expect DOOM to return once more, this may just be too soon. Although they could always go the Nintendo route and announce the game with a splash-screen and nothing else.
With all of that said and done, we are left with one more big reveal. What is it that Bethesda themselves are working on? We know that one thing they are working on is Fallout 76, but Bethesda is a big team and I refuse to believe they don’t have multiple projects in the works. The obvious answer is The Elder Scrolls VI. Skyrim was such a massive success there’s no way that Bethesda hasn’t been looking at this franchise closely for a followup. It will simply print money for them. Although having said that I still don’t expect to see it.
Bethesda VP Pete Hines has gone on record saying that the studio has 2 big, multiplatform releases coming before The Elder Scrolls VI. It’s possible that Fallout 76 is one of those releases, so what is the other one? Rumours and speculation have been circulating for what feels like forever that Bethesda have been secretly working on a sci-fi RPG. In fact, parent company ZeniMax filed for a trademark under the name Starfield as long as 5 years ago, with the trademark being renewed more recently. Could Starfield be one of their big projects?
Of course Bethesda do love a surprise. It’s possible that Pete Hines is being misleading with his outward communication and that The Elder Scrolls VI is in fact just around the corner. Regardless I’m excited for a Fallout 4 style reveal where whatever game they are working on launches just months after announcement.
From here everything comes down to pure speculation and hope with no actual evidence to support any claims. I doubt we will see any of the following, although anything is possible if you wish hard enough. Fallout 3 / New Vegas Remaster, Fallout Shelter 2, Skyrim Mobile, Quake 5, Brink 2? No, it all sounds just a bit too far-fetched.
The Bethesda press conference will take place on Monday June 11th at 11.30 AEST. Tune in or miss out!