Bethesda, EA and Microsoft have come and gone. Next up is Day and the PC gaming show – and if you need to stay up to date, we’re liveblogging the whole thing.
5:15 PM: Round 4, then. The PC gaming show will actually be one of the longer conferences. It’s kicking off with a 45 minute briefing from Intel first – probably to do with their upcoming CPU/laptop announcements – that starts at the painful time of 02:15 AM AEST.
The actual gaming component of the show starts at 03:00 AM AEST (01:00 AM AWST), so you might want to just tune in for that. Either way, I’ll keep you updated with all of the announcements.
For those who want to tune in below, you’ll find the Twitch stream in our post below. The conference will be broadcast on Mixer and YouTube as well, and when I get links and/or embed codes for those I’ll drop them in.
As for the show itself, what would you like to see? Every year I’ve found there has been one or two indie games that have stuck out. Some news on Star Citizen‘s Squadron 42 campaign would be nice. Creative Assembly will probably show up with the Total Warhammer sequel, while Chucklefish (publishers of Stardew Valley) have promised to show off their Advance Wars-style game, Wargroove.
Tripwire Interactive, the Red Orchestra developers, supposedly have an announcement of sorts. There’s a new game from the Invisible Inc. and Don’t Starve creators, and we’re overdue for some new BattleTech campaign footage. (Backers have been playing the alpha for a little while, mind you; we’ll probably see how that’s coming along as well.)
Set your alarms people. If you want to catch Intel’s part of the presser, you’ll want to be ready by 2:15 AM AEST. If you just want to see the games, be back right before 03:00 AM AEST. And as for the rest of the conferences:
If you couldn’t catch EA, Bethesda or Microsoft, never fear: we’ve got everything as it happened.
Sunday saw EA show off their wares, and earlier this morning it was Microsoft. Now it's Bethesda's turn. So if you're keen on some more news about the Fallout franchise, a possible Wolfenstein sequel, or Quake Champions, chances are we'll find out today.Read more
I’ll see you all bright and early tomorrow morning.
2:00 AM: Aaaaaaand we’re back. Did you get some sleep? I felt like I was mostly rolling around in bed, staring at the wall. Always the worst when that happens, so hopefully the E3 Buzz kicks in to power me through the day.
I’ve got my starter kit with me: a large cup of coffee and a second cup of ginger, honey and lemon juice. This liveblog comes live from my home, as Sydney transport doesn’t understand why people might want to travel into the city at this ungodly hour. Actually, that’s probably not a bad thing. But it does at least restrict me to the creature comforts of home.
Sit back, relax, and get ready. Intel’s contribution to the E3 show (besides the sponsorship) is due to kick off on the quarter hour.
2:10 AM: So what exactly does Intel have to talk about that could take up 45 minutes, anyway?
First thing that comes to mind is Coffee Lake, the codename for Intel’s series of 10nm chips. There’s been plenty of unsubstantiated rumours that, thanks to AMD’s Ryzen, Coffee Lake’s release has been bumped up.
I don’t buy into that, personally, because Intel would have made more of an announcement around Computex if that was the case. But it wouldn’t be a surprise if we got more of an update, or at least a roadmap.
Intel’s Project Alloy might show up as well, and it’d be good if it did. The promise of wireless VR would rectify an awful lot of the stumbling blocks around VR, although Intel has to answer a major question: how good can VR be with a just a CPU (plus the in-built GPU) ?
Almost ready now.
2:20 AM: So, Intel kick things off with a gaming laptop playing Overwatch talking about their new X (Kaby Lake-X and Skylake-X) series CPUs.
Mixed reality is … on second thoughts, I’m not sure I’m really into mixed reality.
The pitch here is basically having enough CPU cores to handle the production of everything real time, which is fairly daunting when you think about it.
2:25 AM: So ESL’s Craig Levine comes on stage to say that Intel will be partnering even more with ESL.
It’s not really that surprising though – ESL began running the Intel Extreme Masters events back when they were exhibitions showcasing Counter-Strike 1.6. I still remember watching one of the first matches between Four Kings and Schroet Kommando.
There’s more sponsorship for CS:GO as well, with 10 special events. Key takeaway: the first team to win 4 events will get a bonus prize of $US1 million, which is cool.
2:28 AM: But how does VR fit in with esports?
Time for Ready at Dawn to take the stage, the devs behind The Order: 1886. They’ve got a new VR game as well, called Lone Echo.
There’s a multiplayer arena called Echo Arena, which will be released for free to all Oculus owners. Lone Echo itself will be on sale for $US39.99 on the Oculus store.
2:33 AM: Oh look, Linkin Park are doing a VR experience.
Actually, Reanimation in VR sounds alright. (That’s not what it is, though.) But Linkin Park’s new “VR destination” will launch next month. You’ll need an Intel-based PC, according to the announcer.
2:40 AM: So that’s pretty much it – short and sweet, and with not much enthusiasm from the crowd.
Here’s what Lone Echo‘s multiplayer component, Echo Arena, looks like:
2:45 AM: So, about 15 minutes to go now. Creative Assembly, Battlegrounds dropped in the first line. The pre-show so far is trivia with the Twitch chat about various bits of PC gaming lore, which is a neat way to pass the time.
In unrelated news, my neighbour downstairs has started playing music (!). Yes, it is just before 3 in the morning. What even.
2:48 AM: Sound from the stage mics breaks in to inform sponsors that they sit in their designated seats. Cute. More trivia, in the meantime.
2:52 AM: This pre-show quiz is actually pretty good. The music doesn’t make you want to go postal, unlike my neighbour’s, and the announcer has a good voice for this sort of stuff. Very natural.
It’s right about now that I’m wishing I could control the brightness on my monitor.
2:56 AM: What do you know: the original X-COM was cancelled during development, but kept being made. Nice piece of history there.
Don’t forget that Ubisoft’s pre-show is scheduled to start soon as well. If you want to watch that at the same time, on a second monitor perhaps, you can do so below:
Under two minutes now.
3:00 AM: The showcase kicks off with a soft montage about the personalisation of PCs and the value of modders. Day then appears:
BattleTech‘s campaign coming up, new Shadow of War footage, more Total Warhamamer 2, stuff from Intel and Xbox, Tripwire’s new game, and probably lots of indies.
3:03 AM: First up: an expansion for XCOM 2 from Firaxis.
It’s out August 29, and called War of the Chosen.
3:09 AM: Jake Solomon is talking about some of the new abilities for the Chosen warriors. There’s an assassin, a sniper – more or less the things you’d expect. Chosen warriors stay with you over the course of the campaign, and you can upgrade their abilities and capacities.
The Lost are the protagonists – heavily mutated humans, mutated beyond the point of humanity really.
War of the Chosen will launch simultaneously on PC and consoles. Day follows up by telling everyone to follow Jake Solomon on Twitter, which makes him a tad uncomfortable.
Next game is being introduced by Sonja Reid. It’s from Double Fine, and it’s called Ooblets. Out on PC and XBO next year.
Next game: a chat with the makers of BattleTech, specifically about its campaign.
3:18 AM: The campaign is open-ended, and you can keep playing it after the story finishes. The developers talk a little bit about the main characters, which you can see in these screenshots below:
3:21 AM: Next up is Mount & Blade 2: Bannerlord. The font still annoys me, but the action looks ripe for LAN parties.
That’s followed by cutscenes and in-game footage from a quest battle for Total WARHAMMER 2, showing the Lizardmen and High Elves.
3:27 AM: Total WARHAMMER 2 launches September 28 this year.
3:28 AM: It’s CCG time, specifically Shadowverse. It’s introduced by a bloke wearing a Team Solomid shirt, a bloke who could use a shave.
After a quick trailer, Intel comes up to talk a bit more about VR and esports. The overlay literally describes him as “Intel’s Software Guy”.
3:34 AM: After talking a bit about Intel’s efforts in the scene, a Twitch streamer and broadcaster comes on to … talk about Destiny 2 on PC.
3:36 AM: The streamer basically talks about how PC gamers shouldn’t worry – Destiny 2 will be fine on PC. And if Intel could hook him up with an i9 CPU, that’d be great. Bit awkward, but also have to appreciate the hustle.
3:39 AM: Intel’s Software Guy is recapping the announcements from just prior to the show. He’s now covering the Grand Slam tournaments I mentioned earlier. He tries to get the crowd revved up by talking about the bonus $US1 million prize, but the applause is pretty muted.
I think they’re a bit Intel’d out. Lone Echo and Echo Arena get mentioned; no pause for applause though. There’s also a VR Challenger League kicking off, with finals being held next year.
3:44 AM: Secret Legend has been renamed to Tunic apparently.
It’s way cute.
3:49 AM: Battlegrounds is getting the ability to vault over fences (yay!), new weather effects, new weapons, and eventually, mods. All good stuff.
Greene then talks about how the studio is focusing – this month – on server performance and stability.
Not something you hear on an E3 stage a lot. The PC Gaming Show is real weird sometimes.
Also, more evidence of how cute Tunic is:
Store page just appeared on Steam, too.
3:52 AM: Bill Munk from Tripwire – who just released Rising Storm 2 appears to talk about their studio’s new game.
It’s a scary VR shooter, apparently. More to be announced later this year.
Killing Floor 2 is also getting new seasonal content in the form of Summer Side Show, which lets people muck around a horror-themed carnival. Over 50 new cosmetic items, lots of mini-games, new weapons, and so on.
Summer Side Show launches tomorrow, and it’s free for a whole week. Crowd gets more enthused by the prospect of free stuff. Who’d have thought?
3:58 AM: Forza Motorsport 7 is coming direct to PC, and Turn 10’s Bill Giese rocks up to the stage. Time to roll those camels from the Forza trailer, then.
4:00 AM: Rare now appears to talk Sea of Thieves; game gets the loudest cheer for a while.
New features: firing people out of cannons, riddle maps, and more. There’s support for ultrawide resolutions and an unlocked framerate. An overlay also says that Sea of Thieves is coming early 2018.
4:03 AM: The Last Night’s creative director Tim Soret – who has been having a fun time on Twitter over the last 24 hours – and he says “I have some concerns I want to address” about things he posted publicly.
Soret quickly makes a public apology for things he posted years ago, and Day immediately moves back onto the game. Soret is a little flustered after that, but adds that The Last Night is about defining yourself when you have nothing to strive for.
4:07 AM: Regaining his composure a little, Soret keeps talking about The Last Night‘s inspiration and mechanics. If you walk away from NPCs during a conversation, they’ll remember it. It’s looking and sounding good, for what it’s worth.
But now it’s time for a … pirate game from Bohemia Interactive?
It’s called Islands. Almost looks like it’ll compete with Sea of Thieves in a way. It’s a sandbox game at its core.
4:13 AM: It’s Klei’s time to reveal their next project. It’s a sci-fi RPG called Griftlands and it looks sick.
4:16 AM: Lone Echo gameplay appears, but it’s mostly just retreading the stuff that was already announced.
New Echo Arena trailer then rolls.
4:20 AM: Oh look, Cliffy B is back with Lawbreakers. We’re promised a “full hard date” now.
Cliffy then says the “first alpha was alright” and says publishers “do a lot of bullshit betas”.
Lawbreakers is coming out on August 8 on PC and PS4 for $US29.99. “None of that $US60 multiplayer only bullshit,” he adds. A video then plays featuring influencers and streamers praising the high skill ceiling and movement of the game.
Seems like Lawbreakers is trying a similar thing to Quake Champions, targeting the same crowd without having the Quake franchise to lean on.
But it’s Wargroove time now.
Yes, it’s basically Advance Wars in 2017. 12 campaigns, apparently (what?).
4:29 AM: Time check – the show has run for over two hours now, if you include the Intel pre-show. Damn.
Nothing like a livestream of the system taskbar:
Three minutes to design a map and mission from scratch and to get it playable. Not half bad.
4:32 AM: Shadow of War time. Michael de Plater from Monolith also sounds Australian, which is neat.
It’s just a chat over the recently released trailer. Here’s a nice GIF of that for your entertainment:
4:38 AM: Right. Time for something new.
We’re hearing about a new RTS, a homage to Command & Conquer games. It’s from Microsoft Studios and looks like a remaster of Age of Empires 1.
Age of Empires: Definitive Edition will use matchmaking through Xbox Live, as well as a web portal for tracking stats, friends, and so on.
The game will debut later this year; beta signups are live now.
4:44 AM: That’s a pretty good thing to end a show on. Day9 is wrapping up now, and reminds everyone that E3 doesn’t officially start until tomorrow.
In any case, that’s it for the PC gaming show this year. What’d you think? No super huge announcements this year, and the crowd was flat throughout. VR didn’t really excite people as much as new graphics cards. But there were some crackers, and AoE 1 is a huge deal.
For more E3 coverage, stay tuned – Ubisoft will be kicking off proper at 0600 AEST/0400 AWST/0800 NZST. Thanks for following along!