This year for E3, The Nerd Hub is expanding its coverage beyond our usual social media news with recaps of what stood out to us for each of the major press conferences, as well as, a Special Edition Podcast to recap everything E3 2017. The next showcase was Ubisoft, who has continuously had a strong showing for as long as I could remember. This year they came out with some impressive titles including a new psychological horror game for VR called ‘Transference’, that even had the trailer leaving us with a lasting impression. Among these titles was also the long awaited ‘South Park: Fractured, But Whole’, latest installment in the Far Cry’ franchise, and a revolutionary new game by the name of Star Link: Battle for Atlas, and is mainly focused around the Nintendo Switch; but what stood out to us is what we will be highlighting here today along with the trailers for those who have yet to see them.
Beyond Good and Evil 2
The first title that stands out to us is the return of Beyond Good and Evil, and the reason why starts with its history. Beyond Good and Evil was originally envisioned by Rayman creator, Michel Ancel as a trilogy and was reinvented after being poorly received at E3 2002. The game was released in 2003 and was critically well received, even earning a 2004 “Game of the Year” nomination. Despite these accomplishments and a cult following, the game was considered a commercial failure and shelved; until now. With no current release date, the game will likely suffer a fifteen year sequel gap, over two generations of gaming. This game will be on a whole new level with modern technology and a far more superior Ubisoft.
Skull and Bones
The second game that stands out is ‘Skull and Bones’, which is a shared world game based around naval combat, exploration, progression, and PvP encounters. The major reason this game stands tall is due to the fact that one of the only Xbox exclusives that actually showed us anything was ‘Sea of Thieves’. ‘Skull and Bones’ looks to be much of the same, only done far better; or so it seems. This being a Ubisoft game, it will almost certainly be a multi platform release and would potentially deal a huge blow to the draw that ‘Sea of Thieves’ brings.
Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle
The third game is on our list is a crossover that nobody expected. ‘Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle’ is turn-style strategy combat game that brings the two world of zany characters together for an all out fight to save ‘Mushroom Kingdom’. With signature fight styles and moves, as well as, creative weapons, it’s sure to test the players, and is a major sell point for the Nintendo Switch.
The Crew 2
The next game on our list is the impressive sequel to one of the most creative and entertaining racing games in recent history. The Crew 2 continues its open world sprawl across a condensed, but albeit, still enormous model of the United States in entirety. The difference here is the map has been morphed to fit the now expanded class of racing styles no doubt to be incorporated into what seems to a story revolving around a professional, multi-talent racer. The story seems to work much like Skate 3, with a goal to achieve fame in the media and on the streets; and air, and water, and mountains. This installment looks to expand beyond their impressive ‘Wild Run’ expansion that included monster trucks, drag cars, and motorcycles. So far in The Crew 2 we have seen monster trucks, streets cars, off-road vehicles including rally cars and dirt bikes, hot rods, boats and planes. This is sure to be the most entertaining racing game coming out.
Assassin’s Creed: Origins
The final game on our list for Ubisoft makes it back onto the Top 5 by outshining it’s Xbox showcase with 30-minute, live gameplay demo that revealed quite a few new elements of the games reinvention, as well as, expanding on features we saw a few days ago. Most notably is the new RPG style combat system that relies heavily on gear statistics and abilities, player progression and an adrenaline meter allowing instant executions of any target. Another solid feature is the return of mounts that range from horses, to camels, to chariots. The return of sailing is another pleasant site, as well as, the under water looting and wildlife crafting system. We were also giving a glimpse of how large the map is and it seems quite possible to be the largest ‘Assassin’s Creed’ map to date. Map shroud now takes from the RPG elements and is uncovered through travel, but there is still a synchronization system, which is likely going to be used for fast travel points and revealing collectibles if not also aiding in uncovering the map. Wild life is also available to be used as a tool by releasing caged animals and arrows can be lit ablaze to add an extra layer to your strategy. Quests are now a part of the game and will help you level up and find gear in order to advance in other parts of the story. The most impressive change to the game however, is the ability to climb on anything at any point and to do so with ease. The engineering team set out to create an all-new system to finally perfect one of the most desired mechanics in the franchises entire history and did it beautifully. This game is without a doubt one of the top showings of E3 2017 so far and is guaranteed to shake the ‘Assassin’s Creed’ franchise to its core.
The Ubisoft conference came to a close with an impressive showing of games and was exciting and fun from start to finish. Ubisoft looks to stay at the top of the developers list once again and will likely do just that. The one down side of this conference in my opinion, is that we did not receive a new ‘Splinter Cell’ title, but with the surprising announcement of ‘The Crew 2’, promising ‘Skull and Bones’ and ‘Beyond Good and Evil 2’, as well as, quite likely the most well designed ‘Assassin’s Creed’ game to date; the conference ended up very pleasing for me and I know it was for many of yous. As for ‘Splinter Cell’, here’s to ‘Gamescom’.