- Complaining about sequels at E3 is as useless as asking for the sun to stop shining, or for scripted team chatter in Ubisoft demos to not be cringe-worthy.
The biggest games are almost always going to belong to names you’ve heard many times before, but E3 2015 had a very strong showing for original titles as well. With no licenses and no numbers (except for one, but that’s a technicality), these games reminded us of why originality is such a valued resource in an industry defined by repetition.
DreamsMedia Molecule’s reputation for imagination often outpaces its ability to condense that imagination into fine-tuned gameplay. So it’s a bit concerning that their latest title, Dreams, looks to be their most surreal and inventive game yet.
The reveal trailer takes you through a variety of whimsical scenarios that have a handcrafted look to them. Given their past development on the LittleBigPlanet series, it won’t surprise you to learn that Media Molecule’s latest is all about making your own fun. And if Dreams plays half as good as it looks, it’ll be one of the PS4’s most treasured exclusives.
For HonorAs online shooters continue to go through the motions, melee multiplayer combat has become a niche genre just waiting for a mainstream hit. Ubisoft no doubt hopes For Honor will make an impact, as the tactical combat simulator looks to combine precision dueling with sweeping multiplayer scope.
Teams of four take to the field as vikings, knights, or samurai, and claim map objectives by besting opponents in battle, or pushing their team’s mound of A.I. fodder forward. From the looks of it, For Honor’s light MOBA structure and intense PvP swordplay could be just the kind of unique rush PS4 and PC players are looking for.
Horizon: Zero DawnGuerilla Games made a name for itself on the astoundingly pretty but pedestrian Killzone franchise, and hasn’t tried anything else since.
Horizon: Zero Dawn makes for a very sharp change of pace then by maintaining the company’s reputation for stellar graphics, but taking a new approach to gameplay.
At E3, the third-person action RPG set itself apart from the herd with a dense story trailer and lengthy gameplay demo, ensuring Horizon: Zero Dawn is one of 2016’s releases worth keeping a close eye on. It’s a little bit Tomb Raider, a little bit Enslaved, and exactly the sort of beautiful oddity people will remember in the months to come.
The Last GuardianWe haven’t seen hide or bird-dog-hair of The Last Guardian since 2009, and many understandably believed we never again would. The game’s protracted development, along with the departure of director Fumito Ueda, meant any return of The Last Guardian would likely be a compromised one. But the new gameplay demo Sony showed off during its press conference quieted many long-standing concerns about the game, even going so far as to put Ueda’s name back on the product.
The trailer showcases a game very much like the one teased back in 2009, just on shiny new PS4 hardware, and with actual gameplay. Assuming there aren’t any more delays, 2016 will be the year that The Last Guardian proves whether it was worth the wait and drama.
No Man's SkyTouting a “universe-sized sandbox” that’s “full of choices,” Hello Games co-founder Sean Murray graced Sony’s press conference with another galaxy-hopping demo for the ambitious No Man’s Sky. As with every showing of the game, the promise of its mind-boggling scope is offset by lingering questions about what players will actually be doing while occupying it.
Even if it does end up being just an incredibly huge, very pretty space sim, No Man’s Sky should have no problem attracting players eager to explore its virtually endless environments.
ReCoreJudging a game solely on a CG trailer is the fastest way to form false expectations, and set yourself up for disappointment. What ReCore does have to offer of substance are the names of former-Capcom wunderkind Keiji Inafune, and ex-Metroid Prime creators Armature Studio.
The reveal trailer for ReCore hints at a mix of puzzle and action gameplay involving a variety of gadgets, and a glowing blue orb used to bring mechanic creations to life. The Xbox One exclusive will be able to demonstrate its merit come Spring 2016, but based on the attached talent alone, ReCore is one to watch.
Sea of ThievesThe recently announced Replay Collection is an offer many older gamers won’t be able to refuse, but it’s Rare’s newest adventure that’ll really put the wind in your sails.
The company itself calls Sea of Thieves its most ambitious effort yet, and the cartoony pirate simulator has no shortage of ideas on display during its reveal trailer. How you and other players will interact on land and on the high seas is still unclear, but the game’s swashbuckling theme seems a perfect fit for Rare’s light-hearted sense of humor and premier sound design.