E3 2017 has come and gone, and gamers are suitably excited about the upcoming calendar year. Nintendo unveiled the release date of Super Mario Odyssey, a game that could rival Breath of the Wild in terms of how drastically it will reinvigorate its franchise, while Microsoft finally dished on its new console, the Xbox One X, previously known as Project Scorpio. Although there weren’t any earth-shattering announcements made by any of the video game industry’s major players, E3 2017 was largely a success based on the quality of the games that were put on display and the amount of titles that will be arriving within the next six months.
Of course, not everything at E3 2017 was a success. While the presentations themselves contained the same kind of awkward blunders viewers have become accustomed to over the years – with one in particular, when a presenter literally forgot how to pronounce their own name, being a particularly egregious offense – there were a number of disappointments in terms of the content each company failed to produce over the course of the week-long journey. Here’s our list of the biggest disappointments at this year’s E3.
After the absolutely electric response from the crowd last year during Sony’s Last of Us 2 trailer reveal at PlayStation Experience 2016, many people considered the upcoming sequel to be a lock for this year’s conference. Those expectations were dashed, however, when Sony closed its presentation on a new Spider-Man gameplay demonstration that, while exciting, wasn’t exactly what many were expecting from one of the most influential companies in gaming during the industry’s flashiest week.
Although the initial reaction to The Last of Us 2‘s absence was that of concern for its development status, that, at least, doesn’t appear to be an issue. Sony president Shuhei Yoshida went on record after the E3 2017 presentation as saying that PlayStation held back on its E3 presence in order to make both its Tokyo Game Show and PlayStation Experience conferences more exciting. Given the fact that Yoshida was likely cognizant about how much buzz the lack of The Last of Us 2 was generating within the PlayStation fan base, it seems as though fans of Joel and Ellie won’t have to wait until 2018 to receive some more significant news about Naughty Dog’s second crack at a post-apocalyptic adventure title.
This might seem nitpicky given Nintendo’s excellent and concise presentation during E3 2017, but the set-up for this one had already been done and all the company needed to do was announce it. The Switch is already gaining a reputation as the home for Wii U games that were ignored because of that console’s technical failures, and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has already proven that those remakes can be extremely lucrative for Nintendo as well. Nintendo could have probably flashed the Metroid Prime 4 announcement on screen, followed with the announcement of a Super Smash Bros. Deluxe for the Switch, and called it a successful E3 2017.
Unfortunately, we all know that didn’t happen. While some other titles got their time in the remake spotlight, including an exciting new 3DS game in Metroid: Samus Returns, there was no mention of Nintendo’s generational fighting IP. That could be due in part to the surprising success of ARMS, a game that initially existed as an afterthought in the Switch’s early launch lineup previews thanks to Breath of the Wild but has quickly gained steam as a viable new IP in its own right. Still, though, would it have been so hard to just throw together a teaser for 2018?
It won’t be surprising if Bethesda is announcing Skyrim remakes well into the turn of the 22nd century at this rate. While sales for Skyrim‘s various remasters and re-releases have indicated that there is still a vibrant market for Bethesda’s most popular take on The Elder Scrolls series, there comes a time when the ability to play as the Dragonborn on every existing modern-day console becomes less impressive. That time could be now, as what would have been a previously riot-inducing announcement in the release date for Skyrim on Switch was met with general fatigue from many RPG fans. Skyrim on the go will no doubt be fun, and the addition of the Master Sword into the game is a nice touch, but it’s beginning to feel as though Bethesda simply refuses to move on from the world of Skyrim at the cost of a new Elder Scrolls title being developed.
That’s just going to make it all the more frustrating, of course, when Bethesda makes millions off of Skyrim‘s presence on the Switch later this year.
This one comes with the caveat that nobody really expected Microsoft to have a VR presentation anyways, as the company had attempted to make it very clear that it had no intentions of focusing on Microsoft VR technology when it had a lot of games to show and a new console to finally unveil.
But didn’t it seem like Microsoft was protesting a little too much about just having too much other stuff to showcase to make time for VR? E3 2017 really brings out the gaming community’s optimism, after all, and more than a few people thought Microsoft’s strict no VR policy was a red herring for a big announcement to come during E3 week. Sadly, Microsoft was simply telling the truth about its intentions for E3 2017, and there was nary a rumor regarding Microsoft VR by the time the show floor had emptied.
This isn’t commentary on the fact that Skull & Bones has all the potential in the world to muscle in on Sea of Thieves‘ territory, either. We went hands on with Rare’s upcoming multiplayer pirate experience and came away wanting more, both in terms of gameplay (because it was good) and features (because it seemed largely the same). Sea of Thieves is still a good game, and there’s some enjoyment to be had within its colorful pirate world, but it feels like it hasn’t evolved since the last time we saw it, and that’s cause for some disappointment.
When Sea of Thieves debuted a year ago, its gameplay trailer really showcased the kind of potential the title had, especially with the talented team working on it. There’s so much space for multiplayer fun in a pirate setting, and hopefully Sea of Thieves manages to harness more of that before it finally launches – by all accounts, it still has the potential to be one of the premier reasons to own a current-gen Xbox console, even with Skull & Bones looming large as a potential contender.
That’s our list of the biggest disappointments that emerged out of this year’s E3. Did we miss anything major? Anything you need to get off your chest about this year’s showcase? Let us know in the comments below!