It’s finally time, fans have been waiting for so long to hear more about the recently leaked (and then confirmed) Fallout 76, as well as whatever else Bethesda has been up to. These questions and more were answered at Bethesda’s E3 2018 Press Conference which took place at 6:30 Pacific Time on Sunday June 10th, 2018 in Los Angeles.
The show opens up with a humanizing effect on the staff behind the games we love from Bethesda. Different backgrounds, ethnicity, opinions, genders, all coming together to work as a team and make touching, blockbuster video games for the world. Passion for games is something that the entire staff shares though, and they see their jobs as living the dream, and creating it. The narrator of the intro even has to stop her narration to take a phone call, as it turns out she was a receptionist in the company. This spotlight was a sweet way of showing us that Bethesda are people at the end of the day, and they all care about each other and the gamers equally.
A sizzle clip was shown of Bethesda projects before Global Senior Vice President Pete Hines took the stage. This is the fourth annual E3 showcase for Bethesda who is make up of 10 studios around the world. He takes a moment to talk about some of their recent years including Skyrim VR and Nintendo Switch releases. MetaCritic named them #1 Ranked Publisher in the World recently, I didn’t know. But that’s not what today’s about, and Pete knows that, he moves on with a joke about announcing a game through Walmart Canada. “Perhaps best known for their low prices and ability to keep a secret,” he sarcastically remarks before a RAGE 2 presentation begins.
A musical performance by Andrew W. Kay is given to usher in the sequel to John Carmack’s creation which will be developed by Avalanche Studios. It’s a hilarious rendition of rock with pianos and “You Better Get Ready to Die” as a chorus, which is indeed quite fitting for the post-apocalyptic world of RAGE 2.
Tim Willits of id Software and Magnus Nedfords of Avalanche Studios took stage next. They talk about having so many ideas and how Avalanche Studios was the perfect fit for some of these concepts. Tim says they had a great feeling about them, and the company delivered “big time” then points at the taller Magnus to which the crowd had a few laughs that Magnus then encouraged to become louder. Magnus says that RAGE 2 is a dream come true and praises id Software for inventing the first person shooter genre. He then goes on to tell us RAGE 2 is the most insane shooter you’ve ever played.
Players take control of Walker, the last ranger of the wasteland. Tim says he could talk all night about the guns, vehicle combat, and crazy open world, but instead Bethesda, id, and Avalanche have made the title playable at E3 as well as bringing forward an extended gameplay video which was then shown.
After an asteroid collision with 80% of the Earth’s population dead, it feels like God turned his back on humanity. Laden with curse words and angst, RAGE 2 sees an army of mutants, a gallon of hate, and a need for survival take over the planet. There is no more standing by and doing nothing for Walker, the main character of the game, now it’s time for his RAGE to take over.
In the Eden Spaceport takes place a mission in which we are taught that players can drive anything they see in RAGE 2. The vehicle combat and graphics systems upgrades of the game are immediately noticeable. The new title has no loading screens between areas, making for a seamless open world. New weaponry is used alongside traditional machine gun technology, and strange colors fill the screen throughout a very fast-paced gun fight. A bizarre commercial is seen on an old CRT monitor before a deformed looking bandit with a mo-hawk kicks the screen in and begins shooting back at Walker who is being guided by a voice channel inhabited by a mysterious Doctor telling him how to complete his mission.
A device called an Eco-pod is taken down from orbit in order to retrieve untainted samples of some type for the Doctor. Walker must hop on an elevator and find the boost to his abilities as well as the samples before suddenly the authorities show up with some sort of mutated bodies and high-tech exo-suites. After they’re defeated a larger mini-boss mutant shows up and our footage cuts away to a sizzle reel of various action sequences in the game showing car chases, mutant armies, and a release date of Spring 2019.
ELDER SCROLLS LEGENDS FOR CONSOLES
Community Manager for The Elder Scrolls Christian Van Hoose takes stage next and begins to speak on The Elder Scrolls Legends card game which will soon get totally upgraded visuals and announces that the game will release on Xbox ONE, PS4, and Nintendo Switch in Fall 2018. Apple awarded the game Best of the Year 2017. Any progress made in the game will carry over to the other versions of the game using Bethesda.Net Accounts. The future of the title is then shown. More story, more action, more legends are promised as the game makes its way from mobile and tablet onto Switch and PlayStation / Xbox consoles. The strategy card game is given a new trailer.
ELDER SCROLLS ONLINE – NEW DLC
Game Director of The Elder Scrolls Online Matt Firor hit the stage next and told the world that he plays Bethesda games when he’s not busy developing them. The ESO community is over 11 million active players and over 1 million of them joined in the past 12 months. The game was named MMO of the Year for the third straight year. Morrowind and Summerset are mentioned as being recent successful additions to the game as well in terms of critical acclaim and sales. DLC and content update is promised to come every quarter, and Wolf Hunter is next. A Black Marsh DLC is also coming this year with Argonian lore and culture front faced. The team is already working on 2019 expansions both free and paid as well. A video is then shown highlighting some of the role playing and story chapters of ESO that have taken the world by storm and will continue to evolve over the next couple of years.
Next a scene of destruction is shown with strange alien beings, half mechanical and half demonic. They are scavenging through blood, bones, and lava. A Space Marine comes to defeat these devils. DOOM Eternal is revealed.
Marty Stratton and Hugo Martin take stage as Executive and Creative Directors respectively. They thank the world for the success of the recent reboot DOOM which has motivated the new game DOOM Eternal. The game is a sequel in which the DOOM-slayer will feel even more powerful, the demons will be even more bad-ass, there will be twice as many of them, and hell is now on Earth. A bigger debut is promised at QuakeCon in Dallas during August of this year.
QUAKE CHAMPIONS – FREE TRIAL
Community Manager of Quake Champions Joshua Boyle took the stage next who spoke on the game as well as its continued evolution based on community feedback and eSports interest. He mentions that the QuakeCon event is where tournaments began 20 years ago before eSports existed and this year the event will expand such tournaments.
The game is still in Early Access but will now be available for a week long trial period (June 10 – 17) of the upcoming free-to-play version for anyone to join. If you download it this week you can continue playing it for free even after the trial period ends. A new trailer is given to us showing a great throwback to old school elements of the Quake series which has been cultivated in Quake Champions. Different characters are shown but the nostalgia of the game overall really hit me when I saw the new trailer.
PREY – NEW GAME MODES
Next we get a look back at last year’s PREY from Arkane Studios who are thankful for the title’s success and have added New Game+ and Survival Mode as well as a Moon Crash mode for the game. There’s going to be different hazards and enemies every time you play, and the longer you play the harder it gets. The alien menace simulator deep in space keeps on giving to owners in a new mode where every run is unique and every death matters. Every second counts as the difficulty dynamically increases. Moon Crash and the other upgrades to PREY are available now, but there’s also a 5 vs 1 mode coming to the game in which mimic players disguise themselves as everyday objects.
WOLFENSTEIN II FOR NINTENDO SWITCH
Machine Games took the stage next to speak about Wolfenstein II The New Colossus, the Nazi-killing shooter. Two game of the year awards were landed for the title which will now come to Nintendo Switch.
WOLFENSTEIN YOUNG BLOOD
A Co-op Wolfenstein game was announced featuring the twin daughters of Wolfenstein II’s main character. A trailer was given with cinematic flair. The game will arrive in 2019.
WOLFENSTEIN CYBER PILOT
Pete Hines took the stage again to speak about VR technology and Bethesda’s upcoming titles for VR including a new Wolfenstein game and the PREY Typhon Crash mode.
Game Director of Bethesda Game Studios Todd Howard came up to the stage next to talk about Fallout 76. He thanks the millions of viewers of Bethesda’s E3 and mentions that it’s his 25th year working at the company. He even went to the first E3 show and recounts E3’s growing up similar to a child going up through puberty. He certainly is older than he looks, and / or started very young at his career.
Skyrim for Amazon Alexa is shown and no one is really sure if it’s a joke or not. A hilarious video is shown in which the game comes to Motorola pagers, refrigerators, and etch-a-sketch.
The game is set in the hills of West Virginia and is four times larger than Fallout 4. Players are one of the first to emerge into an untamed and very different wasteland. We see the trailer that was shown at the Xbox Conference just a few hours ago. But then, we are shown more!
Vault 76 was built to celebrate America’s tercentenary (1776 – 2076) and opens on Reclamation Day, the day the vault opens. Finally, a new clip is shown with gameplay of the actual title. Your character awakens and puts on a Pip Boy. He walks outside to see the leftovers of a Reclamation Day party and his robot butler lets him know it’s time to leave the vault and that most of the others have already gone. The sound system speaks about the shared trait of the Vault 76 participants, the best and brightest of America.
The bright light of the outer wasteland is seen as players emerge from the vault. It’s actually pretty clean looking, with autumn landscapes. All new technology with 16 times the detail and even distant weather system viewing across the map are part of Fallout 76.
Since most people don’t know West Virginia very well it will be new experiences for us. The actual secrets of nuclear warfare reside here and the many districts of the game have their own touch and feel. Enemies are graphically more stunning than ever, tactically harder to fight than previously, and a new story can be told through this.
The first to leave the vault has a very big difference from other Bethesda games. Each character in Fallout 76 is a real person, because the game is entirely online. Todd recognizes that the world will have a thousand questions and he will do his best to answer many. Of course you can play the game solo, play quests and level up with your own style – with your friends around the world. Experience for the first time, a Bethesda game together.
People wonder if the game is hardcore survival? “It’s maybe more soft-core survival,” Todd says, since death doesn’t mean the end of a character or the end of progression. Characters aren’t tied to one single server, and you wouldn’t even see servers. You’ll be able to join your friends whenever you want and all of your progression goes with you. Choices you make, stories you create and tell yourself in a wide open world, are the things that make Fallout 76 a true Fallout game. You will decide who are the heroes and who are the villains. Our friends at Vault Tech have made a series of videos for when all of us emerge together.
An attack from another online player is seen as the 50’s style voice tells us “some of your neighbors may not be that neighborly.” and a gunfight ensues. Then again, not all vault-dwellers will be so hostile. Whether you choose to explore the Wasteland alone or with friends, your adventures will be filled with fun activities. Base building, playing instruments, communicating through emotes, and great gun battles are seen. Todd promises again you can play it by yourself if you want, but teaming up and building together is smarter. You can build wherever you want and move buildings to wherever you want.
C.A.M.P.S., Construction and Assembly Mobile Platforms are available for players to build whatever they want, together. The game immediately looks like a Fallout game and doesn’t do anything to greatly change the formula of the game. This is a true Fallout title taken online with building and community, online-driven gaming experiences at the center of the experience.
Multiple Nuclear Missile Sites exist on the map and can be triggered by players. These sites are surrounded by enemies which must be cleared out, and codes which must be collected and combined piece by piece. Teams can do well at this, and then – nuclear bombs can be launched to destroy settlements that your online buddies (“frenemies”) may have created. After this, the area will suffer from nuclear fallout and power suites should probably be used to rush in and collect valuable resources, killing mutated enemies along the way.
Todd lets us know that Fallout 76 is completely unique and houses 100% dedicated servers for years to come. There will be a Beta for the game AKA Break-it Early Test Application in which issues can be discovered and fixed ahead of release. There will be a Collector’s Edition that features a map of the world that glows in the dark. There’s also a Power Helmet with a Headlamp (operational), Voice Modulation Device (operational), with wearable and usable size. Fallout 76 will release November 14, 2018.
FALLOUT SHELTER FOR PS4 AND SWITCH
Three years after the first Fallout Shelter, we learn that the game will come to the PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch. The game is still free and it works with JoyCon or Touch Controls on Switch. Those versions of the game released tonight alongside the E3 show. Todd thanks us for the support of Bethesda games and tells us Fallout Shelter has been played by over 120 million people which is more people than every game Bethesda has ever made combined.
THE ELDER SCROLLS BLADES
A brand new mobile game from Bethesda has been announced and is said to be an experience that cannot be found anywhere else. At it’s heart it is a pure Elder Scrolls game with pure RPG elements, impressive graphics, and mobile convenience. Combat is a whole new system using touch control gestures and timing / movements that you haven’t seen in other games.
Hearkening back to the first The Elder Scrolls Arena the game features both hand-crafted dungeons and procedural generation. Melee and spells are both part of the game, character creation and the inventory system with armors and weapons we’ve come to love. The entire game can be played in Landscape or Portrait mode, so you have a free hand to hold your coffee or whatever. Even running on a phone the graphics of The Elder Scrolls Blades bring the true magic of the franchise out of the house and into the wild.
- The Abyss is a roguelike mode of the title which is an endless dungeon crawl testing how long you can last.
- Arena one on one against other players.
- The Town is the main mode for stories and quests. You are a member of the blades, the empire’s top agents. Forced into exile you find your town destroyed and must rebuild it and decorate it yourself. As your town levels up you unlock new NPC’s, quests, and more. You even visit your friend’s towns.
The game will have Mobile VR and High-End PC VR while connecting them all together. The Elder Scrolls Blades releases for free Fall 2018 for Google Play Store and Apple App Store. Early Access registration can also be done at PlayBlades.com and the title is playable for those who attend E3.
A brand-new, next generation single player game that won’t be ready for this year, but will come at a later time. A completely new franchise, the first new franchise from Bethesda in 25 years, was shown by Todd Howard.
Taking the conference from a B to an A in a matter of seconds, we are shown a planet in space, an alien-looking satellite, and the logo for Starfield. The teaser did enough to let us know it’s real and we won’t have to wait in vein anymore. Bethesda is incredibly excited about it but they’re also building toward the game after that!
THE ELDER SCROLLS VI
An incredible turn of events in which The Elder Scrolls VI was revealed with a very, very short and high quality teaser of lush landscape. Todd Howard thanked everyone for their time and took a break from the stage.
Pete Hines stepped forward once more and asked for one more round of applause for Todd Howard who only shows up once every few E3’s but always brings the goods as Pete said.