Four days. Hundreds of games. And I am but one man. With two thumbs.
Kicking off Monday in Los Angeles, the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo is a gargantuan industry-only trade show where the players in the biz – from console makers to game publishers to retailers to grubby members of the press – get together to see what’s coming over the next year or two. It’s chaotic, exhausting, a logistical nightmare and, in its own weird way, a lot of fun.
From sure things to pipe dreams, here are the 10 games I’m most excited to see at E3 2014.
Batman: Arkham Knight
I’ve already had some hands-on time with this one, and mark my words: it’s going to be one of the big stars of E3. As an added bonus, the folks at Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment have commissioned a life-sized replica of the game’s Batmobile for their E3 booth.
The Last Guardian
Delayed so often that I’m not sure I believe Sony when it says this game isn’t entirely dead. From the makers of ICO and Shadow of the Colossus, the title has been missing in action for years. How cool would it be if Sony closed out their E3 press conference with new details, and maybe (gasp) a release date?
Development studio Bethesda has just two games announced for E3, the online slash-’em-up BattleCry and the ghastly horror game The Evil Within. I’ll be disappointed if it doesn't reveal its next Fallout game, even if it’s just as a trailer during one of the major press conferences. This one’s a long shot, though.
Whatever surprise Ubisoft has up its sleeve
At E3 2012, Ubisoft blew our minds when it revealed Watch Dogs. In 2013, it did it again with Tom Clancy’s The Division. While Assassin’s Creed Unity and Far Cry 4 are already out of the bag, I’d be shocked if our French friends don’t have a mystery ringer on deck.
The Order: 1886
After going hands-on with this game Sony’s pre-E3 preview event last month, I’m looking forward to seeing more of this third-person shooter for the PS4. “But it’s just Gears of War in a steampunk version of England!” say skeptics. Um, you just described something completely awesome.
A story-driven Star Wars game
This may be heresy, but I’m not terribly excited about the new Star Wars Battlefront, an online multiplayer shooter set in a galaxy far, far away. With Episode VII coming next year, now’s the time to take the wraps off a great Star Wars single-player game. BioWare’s Knights of the Old Republic was so long ago.
Mass Effect 4
Speaking of Edmonton’s own BioWare, it’ll be good to go hands-on with Dragon Age: Inquisition at this year’s E3, but, even more than that, I’d love to see the revelation of a next-gen Mass Effect sequel (even if this one isn’t likely to be coming out of the E-ville studio). There’s so much more to see and do in that universe.
While many eyes will be on Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, the Activision game I’m most looking forward to is this sci-fi shooter developed by Bungie, the creators of Halo. Again, naysayers have weighed in: “It’s just Halo meets Borderlands!” And again, that sounds pretty freakin’ amazing.
I’ll eat Nathan Drake’s sweaty shorts if Sony doesn’t bust out a trailer – or better yet, a gameplay demo – of the next Uncharted, which will mark the franchise’s debut on the PS4. If The Last Guardian is a no-show, watch for Uncharted 4 to put a bow on Sony’s E3 press conference.
The Legend of Zelda for Wii U
While we’ll surely see more of the hack-and-slash Hyrule Warriors game coming later this year, Nintendo has a habit of announcing big, big titles at E3. I’d be surprised if we don’t see a new Zelda revealed for Wii U. And more surprised if it comes out before 2016.