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Everything announced at Summer Game Fest’s kickoff stream

This year’s Summer Game Fest started off with a bang. While no one was quite sure how Geoff Keighley’s gaming showcase would fare with E3 right around the corner, the kickoff stream was absolutely stacked. It started strong with the reveal of Borderlands spinoff Tiny Tina’s Wonderland and ended with the biggest game: Elden Ring.

The two-hour stream (plus the Day of the Devs event that followed) was loaded with surprise announcements, celebrity interviews, and musical performances. It’ll be a tough act for E3 to follow, but that hopefully sets the stage for an exciting weekend of reveals. Here’s all the major news from the first day of Summer Game Fest 2021.

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Elden Ring gets a release date and trailer

ELDEN RING - Official Gameplay Reveal

The biggest shocker was Elden Ring, which closed out the show after years of memes. We got a glimpse at a new trailer that gave us a close look at its fantasy setting and gameplay. Even more shocking is that the game got a release date: January 21, 2022. That’s much sooner than some had been expecting, making this a genuine bombshell moment for Summer Game Fest. Hopefully we’ll see a little more at Namco’s E3 showcase on Monday, June 15.

Tiny Tina’s Wonderland is a new Borderlands spinoff

Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands – Official Announce Trailer

We’d heard rumors about it leading up to E3, but now it’s official. Borderlands is getting a fantasy spinoff game called Tiny Tina’s Wonderland. It features a star-studded voice cast that includes Andy Samberg, Wanda Sykes, Ashly Burch, and more. The game is scheduled for an early 2022 release.

Death Stranding gets a PS5 Director’s Cut

Death Stranding director's cut Trailer 4k 60fps

Hideo Kojima appeared on the screen to offer up a surprise. Death Stranding is getting a Director’s Cut on PS5. A teaser trailer for the game featured some cheeky callbacks to Kojima’s Metal Gear Solid franchise.

Vampire: The Masquerade gets a multiplayer spinoff

While we patiently wait for an update on the indefinitely delayed Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2, the series is getting a multiplayer spinoff game. Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodhunt will come out sometime this year, and fans can sign up for a closed alpha right now.

Metal Slug Tactics is a new spin on an old classic

Metal Slug Tactics - Reveal trailer

Shoot-em-up classic Metal Slug is getting a surprising new installment. Metal Slug Tactics is a Fire Emblem-style strategy game that features characters fighting on a grid. Dotemu, the team behind last year’s standout Streets of Rage 4, is working on the game.

New content coming to Among Us

Indie sensation Among Us is getting tons of new content. A road map for the game was shared during the show, which revealed that new roles and modes are coming. The biggest addition is a Hide-and-Seek mode, though details on what that entails weren’t shared.

Jurassic Park Evolution 2 is coming

Jurassic World Evolution 2 | Announcement Trailer

Jeff Goldblum made a celebrity cameo during the show to reveal Jurassic Park Evolution 2. The surprise sequel to the dinosaur park building game will be released sometime this year.

Call of Duty: Warzone’s next season teased

We got a slight teaser of Call of Duty: Warzone’s next season, which debuts on June 17. It’ll feature a “hijacked gulag,” whatever that means, plus plenty of new maps and guns.

Evil Dead: The Game gets a gameplay trailer

Evil Dead: The Game - Gameplay Overview Trailer

We finally got a closer glimpse of Evil Dead: The Game. A gameplay trailer showed off the multiplayer title’s gameplay, which looks about as gory as one would expect from the zombie franchise.

Tons of indies shown at Day of the Devs

A ton of indie games were shown during a delightful Day of the Devs stream. The biggest game shown during the stream was Axiom Verge 2. Developer Thomas Happ shared new details on the Metroidvania and confirmed it’ll come to PS4 and PS5. Other highlights included Soup Pot, The Wandering Village, and stop-motion title Vokabulantis.

And everything else …

  • Indie game Sable got a September 23 release date.
  • A NieR: Automata skin is coming to Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout.
  • Smite is getting a Stranger Things crossover event.
  • Fast and Furious content is coming to Rocket League.
  • MMO Lost Ark is coming to the West this fall.
  • Salt and Sanctuary sequel Salt and Sacrifice is coming in 2022.
  • Two Point Campus will launch in 2022.
  • The Anacrusis is a new co-op shooter developed by Stray Bombay.
  • Prime Label is a new publisher, and it’s working on a new Painkiller game.
  • Tales of Arise got a new gameplay trailer.
  • Sky: Children of Light comes to Switch this July.
  • Two new Overwatch 2 character skins debuted.
  • Planet of Lana is a new indie with a hand-painted art style.
  • Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin got a new trailer.
  • We saw a gameplay trailer for Endless Dungeon.
  • A new Back 4 Blood enemy type made its debut.

Editors' Recommendations

Staff picks: Why Elden Ring is our 2022 game of the year
An Elden Ring character stands on a cliff in front of text that says Game of the Year 2022.

I tried to fight it the entire year.

When I played Elden Ring in February, I immediately knew it was going to be treated as a foregone conclusion when game of the year season rolled around. While I loved FromSoftware’s open-world fantasy epic, I had plenty of gripes with it that I felt were getting overlooked in its immediate hype cycle. I urged the Digital Trends team to keep an open mind through 2022 rather than assuming it had to be No. 1 on our list come December. Such an attitude would do a disservice to the wealth of excellent games that would surprise us after its launch, from Neon White to Vampire Survivors. As the year hit its last quarter, the staff even began to rally behind Immortality, which was one spot away from the throne.

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The 10 best video games of 2022
Video game characters stand in front of text that says The 10 Best Video Games of 2022.

This year's game of the year conversation was over before it could even begin. That’s not because 2022 wasn’t an exceptional year filled with left-field surprises. It’s simply that players were already anticipating what the year’s two biggest games would be: God of War Ragnarok and Elden Ring. Though those two games were indeed two of 2022’s most dominant AAA titles, the “foregone conclusion” attitude ultimately did this year a disservice.

As people anticipated the ensuing war between those two giants, much smaller projects like Vampire Survivors and Immortality were pushing the idea of what a modern game looks like. Nintendo was raising the bar for family games with its strongest lineup since the Switch’s launch in 2017, while lesser-celebrated platforms like mobile and VR delivered some of the year’s most memorable moments. Sure, Elden Ring and God of War Ragnarok’s dominance was inevitable, but they were far from the only games worth discussing in 2022.

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Summer Game Fest returns just before E3 2023 next June
The official artwork confirming Summer Game Fest's return on June 8, 2023.

Geoff Keighley has confirmed when Summer Game Fest will return in June 2023. It will begin with a live kickoff show on June 8, 2023, placing Keighley's game announcement alternative less than a week before E3's grand (intended) 2023 return.
Unlike past years, Summer Game Fest Live Kickoff 2023 will feature a live audience, like Geoff Keighley's The Game Awards. It will take place in the YouTube Theater at Hollywood Park, with tickets going on sale in early 2023. It will still be livestreamed across platforms like YouTube and Twitch, though. It's currently unknown who's participating, how long Summer Game Fest will run afterward, or if it will feature a Summer Game Fest Play Days-like element for fans. Still, Keighley says all of that info will be revealed ahead of the event next year, teasing what people can expect. 
"In keeping with tradition, we'll have tons of exciting announcements from the developers that are pushing the games industry forward, and will once again highlight other publisher digital events, demos, and more surprises to be announced in the coming months," Keighley says in a press release. 
That June 8 start date, and the other Summer Game Fest events likely to follow, put Keighley's show just ahead of E3 2023. The ESA and ReedPop plan to bring E3 back between June 13 and June 16, 2023. With five days of lead time on E3, Summer Game Fest can coexist with the long-running gaming conference and encompass the plethora of publisher showcases that tend to precede E3.
Geoff Keighley made it clear that he wants Summer Game Fest and E3 to coexist for a while. "We've had extensive conversations with ReedPop about E3," he said in an interview with Epic Games Store. "I think it'll kind of fit together and flow kind of from what we're doing into what they're doing and stuff. E3, to me, is this kind of master brand that represents gaming news in June."
With the start date of Summer Game Fest confirmed, the coexistence of these two summer gaming events is a reality. Summer Game Fest returns on June 8, 2023.

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