From Elder Scrolls to Resident Evil, these were the biggest surprises at E3 2018

E3 2018 featured far fewer new game announcements than we traditionally see at the yearly event, with publishers preferring to show off extended gameplay presentations of their previously-announced games. Yet we still saw plenty of pleasant surprises from nearly every major company. From shocking game reveals to unexpected acquisitions, these are the biggest surprises we saw at E3 2018.

‘Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’ includes all past characters

We already knew Nintendo was bringing characters like Mario and Link to the new Super Smash Bros. game, but we weren’t prepared for what director Masahiro Sakurai announced during the Nintendo Direct event. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate contain new characters like Ridley from Metroid and the Inklings from Splatoon, but it will also contain every other character the series has ever seen. Young Link is back alongside Toon Link. Roy, Marth, and Ike return. Even Solid Snake is back this time, and many fighters come with extra costumes to represent multiple games they’ve appeared in. A few even have separate voice lines depending on the version you selected.

From Software’s new game isn’t ‘Bloodborne 2’ — but it is awesome

An earlier teaser for Dark Souls and Bloodborne studio From Software had us believing a sequel to the latter game was in the works, but this didn’t end up being the case. Instead, From Software and Activision announced Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice during the Xbox E3 presentation. Set in Japan during the late 16th century, the game is not following the more realistic formula of Ghost of Tsushima, and we saw numerous grotesque monsters during the short gameplay trailer. It looks to continue the excellent third-person combat from From Software’s past work, but with a little extra flair.

‘Nioh 2’ announced

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice certainly has some similarities to Team Ninja’s 2017 Souls-like Nioh, which mix historical elements with fantasy and folklore, but Sekiro won’t have to serve as a replacement for Nioh – because Nioh 2 is also on the way. No release date was given when it was announced during the PlayStation E3 press conference, but the announcement trailer included an enormous red horned monster who spewed lava from his chest. We’re guessing he’ll be less-than-thrilled to meet us, though it will likely be a year or two before we’ll know for sure, as the first game was released in 2017.

Microsoft buys Ninja Theory

Microsoft had already announced its intent to form new game studios and purchase existing ones to bolster the number of exclusive games for Xbox One and Windows 10, and most of its E3 announcements regarding this weren’t surprises – State of Decay 2 developer Undead Labs is now a first-party studio, for instance. But one acquisition did catch us off-guard: Ninja Theory. The action game masters had previously worked on the PlayStation 3-exclusive game Heavenly Sword, and the recent Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice didn’t original launch on Xbox One at all. With Microsoft’s resources at Ninja Theory’s disposal, the studio has the potential to create a fantastic exclusive franchise for Xbox.

Bethesda brings the goods

Bethesda isn’t the largest game publisher around, so we thought we might here some news about a sequel or two before being shown gameplay for Rage 2. Instead, the publisher announced everything. The long-rumored role-playing game Starfield is real, and it’s Bethesda Game Studios’ current project. The Elder Scrolls VI will be arriving after that. Doom Eternal is coming next year, and Wolfenstein: Youngblood brings the twin Blazkowicz daughters into 1980s Paris to kill some Nazis. Even virtual reality got some love, with a VR option coming to Prey and the separate game Wolfenstein: Cyberpilot on the way. Elder Scrolls fans have The Elder Scrolls Blades to keep them satisfied until the next full game arrives. Though playable on mobile devices, it will also work on consoles, PC, and VR, and all versions will be cross-platform compatible.

‘Kingdom Hearts III’ adds ‘Frozen’ and more

Kingdom Hearts III will include worlds from classic Disney and Pixar films like Toy Story and Monsters, Inc., but Square Enix had a few more surprises in store for fans anticipating the sequel. Sora and company will head to the world of Frozen to meet Elsa, and we’ll even be able to use special ice abilities to take out enemies.

That wasn’t the only surprise Kingdom Hearts III brought to E3, however. During the PlayStation press conference, it was revealed that Sora will meet characters from the Pirates of the Caribbean films. They won’t have their look changed to appear more in-line with the game, either, with the actors’ likenesses looking almost exactly as they do in the movies. It’s unsettling in the best possible way, and came as a shock in the otherwise cartoony game.

‘Resident Evil 2’ remake is actually a remake

The term “remake” is often used by publishers to refer to games that have received graphical enhancements or a few new gameplay features, but that isn’t what Capcom did with Resident Evil 2. The upcoming remake completely overhauls the entire game, with a third-person perspective similar to that in Resident Evil 4, gorgeous new cinematics, and environments that look just as good as anything releasing in 2018. It’s made possible by the same engine powering Resident Evil 7, and if you feel like you missed out on the chance to play the PlayStation original 20 years ago, it gives you the perfect excuse to enter Raccoon City.

‘The Division 2’ won’t divide its players

Ubisoft released several paid expansion packs for Tom Clancy’s The Division, offering players additional missions and activities to supplement the core game’s offerings. They helped make a good game even better, but those players who didn’t want to pay more than the initial $60 were left with less content than their peers. For The Division 2, three major expansion packs are planned, and Ubisoft will offer them to all players for free. On top of that, the team at Ubisoft Massive is focusing heavily on endgame content, including eight-player raids, so you should have plenty of reason to stick around in-between the major expansions’ releases.

Fox McCloud comes to ‘Starlink: Battle for Atlas’

Ubisoft and Nintendo collaborated on Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle last summer, and the two companies are working together again for the Switch version of Starlink: Battle for Atlas. During Ubisoft’s press conference, we learned that Star Fox chief Fox McCloud and his Arwing vehicle will be coming to the Nintendo Switch version of the game, and players will be able to purchase a starter pack featuring physical versions of Fox and his ship and launch. It isn’t a new Star Fox game, but it’s still very cool.


Here are all the awesome award-winning indie games from IGF

Indie games are now offering experiences capable of matching -- and often surpassing -- that of big-budget blockbuster titles. The Independent Games Festival recognized the best of them on March 20.

Xbox One X vs. PS4 Pro: Which console is more powerful?

Far from cooling down, the console wars are only getting more intense. We compare Microsoft's Xbox One X to Sony's PlayStation 4 Pro to help you decide which premium console is right for you.

The best of the last generation: Our 50 favorite Xbox 360 games

The Xbox 360 thrived during a generation where games were plentiful. Here's our list of the best Xbox 360 games of all time, including all game genres and even a few special indie hits.

These are the must-have games that every Xbox One owner needs

More than four years into its life span, Microsoft's latest console is finally coming into its own. From Cuphead to Halo 5, the best Xbox One games offer something for players of every type.

Your PlayStation 4 game library isn't complete without these games

Looking for the best PS4 games out there? Out of the massive crop of titles available, we selected the best you should buy. No matter what your genre of choice may be, there's something here for you.

Get in the Dark Zone and blow away the competition with our The Division 2 guide

The Division 2 has three Dark Zones, specialized areas for PvE and PvP combat. Our Dark Zone guide teaches you the ropes, from the recon missions to the leveling system to the dangers and benefits of going Rogue.
Product Review

Acer Predator Triton 500 review

Nvidia’s new RTX 2080 Max-Q is the fastest GPU you’ll find in any laptop, but it usually comes at a steep price. Acer’s Predator Triton 500, starting at $2,500, makes it a little more affordable. But what must you sacrifice in the…

The Division 2

The latest news, guides, tips and tricks, updates, patch notes, and more so you can learn how to level up your game in The Division 2. Related Categories: The Division 2 News | Guides | Features

Get a new Nintendo Switch? You'll need to grab these accessories

The Switch is a capable console right out of the box, but it has its limitations. Thankfully, these Nintendo Switch accessories will allow you to make the most of Nintendo's latest console.

From fatalities to new characters, here's what we know about Mortal Kombat 11

Mortal Kombat 11 releases April 23 for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC. Here is everything we know about NetherRealm's latest fighting game, including its characters.

Get a head start mastering Apex Legend's newest character Octane with our guide

Apex Legends' newest legend Octane ran so fast in the Titanfall 2 gauntlet that he blew off his legs. Now dropping into Kings Canyon with prosthetics, Octane's ability set is still centered around speed. Here's how to play as Octane.

The Division 2 offers nothing but a funhouse mirror of America

Tom Clancy's The Division 2 improves on the design shortcomings of the original game in several different ways, but its version of Washington D.C. is completely removed from reality.

World of Warcraft's allied races will make you want to start a new character

The Hord and Alliance are seeking new allies in their struggle for control of Azeroth. Rather you pledge your allegiance to the Horde or Alliance, we've got a guide to help you unlock every allied race that's coming in Battle for Azeroth.

How the Google Stadia could lead to a new era of multi-GPU gaming

Google's Stadia could use more than one graphics card to deliver the high-performance visuals it's promised. If that leads to better developer support for multi-GPUs, could that mean gaming with two or more graphics cards could finally be…