Bethesda – E3 Roundup

Bethesda basically owns my soul because of Fallout 3 and Skyrim, so this was a presentation I was fairly interested in. Here’s a summary of the news and updates Bethesda released for their various titles on June 12.

Fallout Shelter Updates

I loved Fallout Shelter so much when it first came out, but I eventually had to delete it because I was a bit too obsessed with it. Even just seeing it on the big screen tempted me to re-download it but… I love myself too much. (And I have too many other games to play.) This simple little app is incredibly addicting, so you should check it out if you haven’t yet. Just be careful…

Apparently it’s hit 50 million players (Wowza!), so it’s no surprise that Bethesda has some new things coming for it. There’s going to be a PC version and an extensive update for the mobile app (new locations, enemies, dwellers, combat system – not a ton of details on these elements, just a short video), both scheduled for July.

I wonder how different the PC version will be from the mobile version (if at all), and if it will also be free?

Fallout 4 Add Ons

Bethesda announced some new material for Fallout 4: Contraptions Workshop (next week!), Vault-Tec Workshop (July), and Nuka-World (the unknown future). Contraptions and Vault-Tec appear to mostly enhance the Sims-like aspects of Fallout 4, allowing players to amp up the customizability of their settlements, build new things, and (in Vault-Tec) a new ability to build vaults! You’ll even be able to experiment on vault dwellers (okay maybe this is getting TOO much like The Sims…. I’m not complaining.) As someone who has thoroughly enjoyed the building mode of Fallout 4, I can already tell I’ll love the updates (and play them to the point of hating myself…).

Nuka-World, which was just slightly teased in a brief video, will take place in a decrepit amusement park (spooky!) that’s overrun with raiders. Nuka-World will apparently be Fallout 4’s final expansion. (Not to push my own agenda but I’m seriously hoping this means they’re moving on to ES6…)

In addition to these add ons, Fallout 4 mods will be coming to consoles! I’ve never played Fallout with mods before, so I’m stoked to check this out. I haven’t played enough Fallout 4, so I’m glad these announcements gave me the kick in the pants I needed to get back into it. (Side note: The sickest burn I’ve ever heard was a conversation on Twitter and I tried to find it but I couldn’t, it basically went “They’re releasing console mods for Fallout 4” “Will there be a mod that makes it good?” Comment if you know the source. Whether or not Fallout 4 is good can be a topic for another post ;p )

 

Skyrim Remaster

My one true love will be re-released 10/28/16 for PS4, Xbox One, and PC. This is a small, small bandage with which I can attempt to cover the gaping wound Bethesda inflicted on me by not announcing ES6.

To be honest, I was not impressed with the snippets they showed comparing the remaster to the original. However, I know that if you understand the technical terms they were throwing around, I’m sure it is a genuine upgrade. To me it looked like they slapped some Instagram filters on it. (Then again, people said the same thing about the Twilight Princess remaster, and I think that when you play that you can genuinely see the improvement over the original.)

Another exciting upgrade to the deluxe remaster will be the addition of mods! I mostly played Skyrim on Xbox 360 and PS3, but I did do a full play through on the PC version just so I could experience it with mods as well. Honestly, I was young and foolish and only did stupid mods (like mudcrabs in top hats and monocles), and didn’t focus on the mods I should have (like graphics enhancing mods). This is my chance to rectify my mistakes and have an even better (is that possible?!) Skyrim experience.

I’m trying so hard to be excited for this, but I’m already deep into a play through (my third serious one) on the PS3 version. It’s hard for me to imagine wanting to dive in again and start all over. (I haven’t even finished the DLCs yet!) But… If they have a special deluxe edition…… F**k it I know I’m getting this. Just take all of my money, Bethesda.

Elder Scrolls Online

There were some big updates for ESO, but to be perfectly honest I tuned this out. I like Skyrim because I like to be alone immersed in the incredible world, not because I want to run around being forced to interact with dingdongs. Let’s see what Google can tell me about what was announced.

Okay! Turns out players will now be able to explore the world freely after completing the tutorial. Sounds like something the game should have had to begin with.

Elder Scrolls Legends (Card Game)

Apparently this is just like Hearthstone (which I have never played) but Elder Scrolls themed. Coming soon to Mac, Android, iPad. My stream cut out during the cinematic trailer for ESL and I’m not about to re-watch it.

 

Dishonored 2

There was a new trailer for Dishonored 2 (coming 11/11/16 [and I’m literally furious it’s stealing Skyrim’s birthday]), as well as the first gameplay video. They also announced the ability to play as the dude (Corvo Attano), which seems weirdly pandering to male players after they released info about it last year and made it seem like you were going to play as Emily Kaldwin. Apparently, each character’s play through will have unique perspectives and abilities, but I wonder why they felt the need to add Corvo as a playable when he was already the playable from the first game. Guess some men can’t handle playing as a woman.

They actually managed to make this look pretty cool, highlighting one of Emily’s devices/abilities that allows her to sneak around in parallel timelines and jump in and out to attack. The art design remains a bit strange to me, an indelicately balanced combination of stylized and realistic. (The human characters appear mostly lifelike but with some cartoonish dimensions, like giant hands.) I haven’t played Dishonored yet, but it’s been on my “To Play” list for years. Maybe now that they’re making a sequel, I’ll finally play the first one.

There will be a collector’s edition released with limited supply. If you’re interested, better snatch it up ASAP, because the Fallout 4 collector’s sold out very quickly.

 

Quake Champions

Bethesda released the first trailer for Quake: Champions. Having played a lot of Doom recently, I can definitely see the Doom influences on this new game. It basically looks like 2016 Doom combined with Overwatch. My favorite part from this segment was when they said, “The game features a diverse cast of warriors each with different attributes and unique abilities,” while showing a cast consisting entirely of large, bulky (white and/or robotic) male characters and one tiny, sexy woman. Wow! So diverse! Revolutionary!

Prey

A new gritty, psychological space drama. It looks looked pretty cool. The main character wakes up after a series of Groundhog-Day-like mornings to discover the world isn’t what he thinks, and he’s the subject of some sort of experiment. It’s a “reimagining” of Prey, not a remake or a sequel. (Prey 2 had previously been planned, but was canceled in 2014.) It looks creepy, scary, visceral, and smart. Release set for 2017.

BREAKING NEWS UPDATE: As I was doing follow up research for this blog post, I read a very interesting detail that was not apparent during the conference. I was very bitter that this was yet another game starring a Rugged Man, but it turns out you WILL be able to play as female. I had a much more apathetic/disinterested write up about this title penned out (I was disgusted to see yet another Rugged Man helming a cool project), but after I read this I am much more interested in this game. And by interested, I mean 100% going to preorder and play.

 

Virtual Reality

Bethesda had Fallout 4 and Doom set up so people at E3 in person could experience them in VR. I’m not thrilled about this because it doesn’t make sense to shoehorn VR into already existing games that weren’t meant for that. Don’t get me wrong, I would die to experience the world of Elder Scrolls in VR – if it was designed made for that. (Fingers crossed for ES6 made for VR!) That being said, I haven’t actually experienced VR yet, so maybe I don’t know what I’m talking about. I have played Doom though, and I can only imagine Doom VR resulting in copious amounts of vomit. I’m just glad this means Bethesda is getting its hands dirty with VR. I expect great things from them in exploring the new technology.

And there you have it! My not at all biased analysis of the Bethesda E3 conference.

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