Bethesda took point at this year’s E3 convention, starting the show off Sunday night with their first-ever live press conference. And boy, what a way to start the week. From demons and chainsaw, to stealth assassins, wasteland warriors, and mobile phone apps, Bethesda’s press conference was not only a resounding success, it was packed to the brim with exciting new games announcements. Here are six awesome things Bethesda showed off at E3 2015.
Bethesda came out guns-a-blazing with the official reveal of DOOM, the long awaited sequel to the classic first person shooter series. While the bulk of the reveal centered on the fast-paced and uber violent single-player content, the multiplayer content got us to raise an eyebrow. DOOM’s Snapmap feature — which is an immensely enjoyable word to say — promises to let players on any platform create maps and custom multiplayer gametypes to share with their friends. We saw matches that included mechanics like resource and point collection, frantic deathmatches, wave-based horde modes, and even the ability to play as demons. With such a deep set of creative tools available, it stands to reason that DOOM might be one of next year’s big multiplayer games.
Fallout 4’s new crafting and building systems
Fallout 4 was Bethesda’s trump card this year, and with the majority of the conference allocated to covering the open-world RPG, we got an in-depth look at what to expect from the game come November. It almost goes without saying that we could fill up multiple articles with exciting things from the footage shown, but the two gameplay systems that really caught our attention were the new crafting and building mechanics.
In Fallout 4, certain areas that were demolished in the nuclear apolocalyse and its aftermath can be rebuilt. From the gameplay footage, the impression was that an old building could be turned into secure locations for your character and trusty dog companion. Defensive implements like traps and gun posts can be added to guard against attacking mobs of wasteland raiders or ghoulish mutants. This is new territory for the Fallout series and exactly how it will fit into the storyline for the game has yet to be explained. However, we’re excited to see more of the Minecraft-meets-tower-defense feature. But that wasn’t the only interesting new gameplay mechanic we saw of Fallout 4.
Fallout 4 is promising big things out of its new crafting system. From what was shown, crafting looks robust and dynamic, with highly customizble weapons and items that can be pieced together from numerous different materials. Want to build a scope? You can do so with glue, a toy car, maybe some scap metal… or if those aren’t available, find some tape and a few old car parts. That flexbility extends to the weapons and armor you craft, as well. Mix and match various parts to come up with all sorts of wild and powerful combonations. This sort of flexibility could add to Bethesda Softworks’ famously engrossing world building.
id Tech 6
id Software has always been famous for pushing technology through its game engines, and id Tech 6 is their next big leap. DOOM was revealed to be running entirely on the engine (internally refered to as “id Tech 66”), and from the gameplay we saw of DOOM, id seems to have once again crafted something special. The graphical fidelity of the DOOM demo was stunning, with gore-splattered halls and glowing plasma all being rendered in crisp, high-resolution while running at silky smooth frame rates. We’re hoping the final product lives up to the trailer both visually and in terms of gameplay, and that future games will be able to take advantage of the engine.
One of the biggest surprises of the conference, Fallout Shelter, is an appstore game where you assume the role of a Vault overseer, building and managing your own Vaulttec vault in a Tiny-Tower-meets-The-Sims style game. Fallout Shelter has a cute, quirky aesthetic in the style of Fallout’s famous pip boy character. The best part, though, is that the game is free, and devoid of any annoying time limits or resource pay walls–other than some small in-app purchases that can nab you more loot. Even better? It’s available for download right now. We’re looking forward to losing hours to Fallout Shelter.
After an accidental broadcast half-spoiled the annoucement, we were all somewhat expecting the Dishonored franchise to make an appearance in some form or another. That didn’t make the teaser trailer any less exciting to watch, however. We got a look at a new playable character, Emily Caldwen, who was a minor character from the previous game in ther series. She will be playable alongside returning protagonist, Corvo Attano. The trailer looked reminiscent to the gameplay of the original Dishonored, Emily’s smoke-like powers are both visually and conceptually very different from Corvo’s warping blink ability. The exact implications Emily’s inclusion has on the story and gameplay will be revealed sometime in the future, but for now, we’re excited to know the stealth action series is back.
Finally, how could we not include a real life Pip Boy? Bethesda Game Studio’s executive producer Todd Howard showed off the Fallout 4 special edition pre-order item on stage during the game’s demo, which is fully wearable and fully opperational. The Pip Boy wearable even has its own app, so you can track your stats and map your location in the world. It might not be as ergonomic or subtle as other wearables on the market, but you best believe if a real, functioning Pip Boy exists that we’re going to give it a try.