As ever with E3, Devolver Digital become the conference that is worth watching even if you aren’t interested in any of the games they are announcing. They really put on a show and don’t feel the need to get awkward developers up on a stage to read some marketing approved message to everyone. Instead, they blow some shit up!
Given the nature of E3 this year, Devolver have gone for slightly less pyrotechnics this time around, but replaced those with many chilli dogs. They also announced there brand new MaxPass+, now bringing monetisation to you as a service. What this actually means I’m not sure anyone knows, but somewhere in their marketing-nese there is a logic so you should probably start throwing your money at your screen for this free service.
Somewhere in this madness there were also some actual games being shown off. And what games they were. After being somewhat underwhelmed by the lack of anything massively interesting in Ubisoft’s stream (besides more Mario+Rabbid), this was a nice breath of fresh air.
Shadow Warrior 3
I’ve never particularly gotten on with the reinvention of the Shadow Warrior series. The first game was okay, but nothing particularly special. The second game went off in a different direction entirely and I bounced off it quite quickly. The third game looks to be more my jam though. Only one combat area is shown off, but when that combat area involves some sort of spinning disc blades of doom that you can crush enemies with then I don’t need much more.
The action looks incredibly frantic and there is a whole bunch of grotesqueries for you to do battle with. Plus, there is yanking weapons out of the mouth of big fat enemies. Huge amount of colour and particle effects splashed over the screen and I really loved what I saw. This could be the first in the series to get me on board.
Trek to Yomi
For those that love a bit of artistic flare in their games there has been an abundance of that coming out of the indie side this E3. So many really great looking platformers in particular.
We can add Trek to Yomi to those great looking indie games too, with its really gorgeous looking black and white representation of historic Japan. The black and white images and the use of silhouettes makes this look really striking and I really want to see more of it. Not much of the actual gameplay, which seems to be a side scrolling game with sword fighting, although I’m assuming not a platformer. Hopefully it will be a simple system that is easy to understand, but difficult to master, along the lines of Unto the End, but there isn’t much to go on.
This looked like a lot of fun. A first-person runner, with you dodging traps in tombs that look like your classic Tomb Raider. That would probably be enough to have my interest, but the addition of seeing the ghosts of other players that have failed to get through adds a nice bit of modern spice to this.
The trap variety looks varied and the movement looks pretty good, complete with the almost obligatory grappling hook. It could result in something that lends itself to time attacks and I have no doubt we will be seeing this come with scoreboards and modes to race ghosts of the best players.
Again, this looks to be continuing the trend of just really fun games coming out of Devolver.
Wizard With a Gun
Trailer opens with treating us to a nice animated cinematic. The in-game footage equally looks quite nice, although quite similar to Don’t Starve. The animation looks better though and everything moves really smoothly and with more variety. The gameplay itself seems similar to Don’t Starve, although with a bit of an action focus.
It looks enjoyable, but I’m not a big fan survival mechanics, so those are a bit of a turn off. Probably the one that interested me the least in the showing (besides a mobile game, which I’m not even sure if it is a real thing or not). Still, I can certainly see the appeal for some.
Again with the gorgeous looking artwork in what appears to be a Hades-alike. The environments looked a little less procedurally generated than that, but the action seems to be similar. We see a couple of boss fights that look a bit more interesting too.
There appears to be a few different tools at your disposal, so I hope we have plenty of ways of customising abilities and weapons.
A new game from the creator of Pony Island and it looks to be equally as twisted. This one is inspired by card games, although even the trailer doesn’t manage to hide that more is going on, as there also appears to be some environment puzzle solving and also some found footage FMVs appearing.
This actually looks like it might be genuinely creepy, such as seeing the hands of your card playing opponent reaching out to grab you. The environment is really dark and there is definitely a bit of an occult vibe going on.
Probably one to go into knowing as little as possible and I’ve got a feeling that it will likely be a memorable experience.
A very old school looking scrolling shmup. It isn’t a genre that I know much about and often looks a little Samish to me, but this might be a good introduction to it. It really is going for the old school vibe, with an art-style that looks just like those old games, although no doubt done in a way that could never be achieved by them.
Might be worth checking out, although it is taking the weird route of only being released as a physical game. I’m not really sure why they would do that, as it looks ideal as a digital only release. Perhaps a physical release in some special package would making sense, but it is just in a standard Switch box.