This year, Geek & Sundry crashed E3 so hard, we even brought the Twitch couch! Thanks to IndieCade, we were streaming the event directly from the floor, giving you live up-to-the-minute updates. The other Twitch hosts and I had a blast meeting game developers and giving our audience a look at what’s to come. After a phenomenal set of announcements at the pre-E3 press conferences, the floor exploded with fans, press, and exhibitors excited to see these games in action. We spent the whole event streaming from the IndieCade booth, bustling with exciting new indie games.
Each year, E3 lets gamers all over the globe know which titles to anticipate, what hardware to save up for, and which rumors are true. This year was one of the most exciting Electronic Entertainment Expos ever: games that have been anticipated and rumored for years have finally been announced — like Final Fantasy VII‘s remake, The Last Guardian‘s creation (finally!), and Shenmue 3 being funded into existence. There was something for wveryone to get excited about on the exhibit floor. While tons of big game studios were showing off their new titles, IndieCade held their own showing of great titles created by hardworking independent developers.
On day one of E3, I was able to get my hands on Bethesda’s highly anticipated team-based action game, Battlecry. I’ve been extremely interested in this game since it was announced: it has great art design, diverse characters, and an interesting class system. Battlecry pits teams of six or twelve against each other in a battle-to-the-death using swords, daggers, and bows and arrows, escaping the overpopulated shooter genre and standing out. The Bethesda booth pitted me and five other players against another faction of six. At first sight, the art design is very reminiscent of Team Fortress 2, but looking closer the design isn’t as cartoon-y. I was able to play with all five classes, and started to favor the infiltrator. After running back to the IndieCade booth and hosting some awesome guests, I decided to roam around the booth and check out the innovative indie games that were selected.
That’s when I ran into Distance, a super cool survival racing game. Survival and racing are rarely in the same sentence together, but this game marries the two perfectly. You drive a space age car through a digital track as you dodge and jump over obstacles. The HUD is all loaded into the rear window of the car, keeping the game looking clean and interesting. As you progress, the stages get increasingly difficult, adding saws and grinders to the track as you drive for your life. Imagine mashing up Tron, Twisted Metal, and your standard racing game. I could barely pull myself away from the game and let other people play.
Day two at E3 was one big party. The Los Angeles Convention Center was filled to the brim with reporters, developers, and attendees. Every line was over an hour long and the exhibit hall was as loud as ever. Every major game studio was having live discussions about the new games we saw at their press conferences; YouTube Gaming was peacocking hard in an attempt to take on Twitch as a video game streaming platform, and attendees were camping out to watch clips of exclusive gaming footage. The G&S Twitch team gave the chat room a taste of the E3 floor and I continued to roam around during my time off-screen. If you’ve been paying attention to my rambling on social media, then you know I’m a huge Fallout fan. So of course, I had to head back to the Bethesda booth to get a better look at the Fallout side. I arrived to find a giant moving Mr. Handy robot firing off clever quips at the attendees standing in front of it snapping pictures. I took this as an opportunity to do the same.
There wasn’t much more information about Fallout 4 than was given at the press conference, but they did have a model of the Pip Boy that will come with the Pip Boy Edition of the game. Since it was in glass, I was unable to get a feel for the weight or durability, but it definitely looks like it fits on your arm. It also looks like there’s some light padding on the inside making it comfortable to wear.
After scoping out Fallout, I ran back to the IndieCade booth to show off Royals with Asher Vollmer. If you were a fan of Oregon Trail or loved playing weird games that you found on your uncle’s floppy discs, this is the game for you! Royals takes retro gaming to new levels by giving you no tutorial and throwing you right into the game. In Royals, you try to become a royal by rallying neighboring farms and taverns, but if the King hears of your deeds, you’ll meet swift opposition. Each turn takes a year of your life, and you only have a limited amount of life in your pool to work with, so every move counts. We each took turns playing and seeing how far we could get, but Asher remained champion of the day.
Day three was all about that game play! With smaller lines everywhere, I was able to get my hands on Street Fighter, Rainbow Six: Siege, and Star Wars Battlefront. The games played as beautifully as I hoped and I had a blast playing them. I wandered around the show room floor as big game companies made their final push. I eventually walked back to my favorite place on the floor, IndieCade. Don’t get me wrong, I’m excited about all the amazing big titles coming out, but the indie games brought something different to the table. The new announcements were over-saturated with shooters, but at IndieCade, they had survival racers, a Castlevania style dungeon crawler, and my personal favorite, a game where you sniff dog butts. I was neighboring Bethesda, 2K, and Ubisoft the whole show, but indie games kept drawing me back. So step outside of your comfort zone and grab one today.
Also, preorder Fallout 4.
Image Credit: Ify Nwadiwe