The Best of Bethesda’s First-Ever, E3 Showcase

Last night, Bethesda hosted their first ever E3 conference. Several games were covered, and we finally learned more about the exciting things to come from one of my personal favorite developers in video games.

From my perspective, it’s hard to believe that anything will top Bethesda’s conference at this point. They just have a knack of servicing what fans want in such an amazing way. Mostly, in this post, I’m likely to gush about everything I loved about the Fallout 4 reveal, but I’ll do my best to touch upon the other announcements as well.

If you missed out on the showcase last night, then check it out here.

Id Software was the first team to come up on-stage. This is where we got our first look at Doom, which seems to essentially be a reboot of the classic franchise. It’s zany, gruesome and over the top violence looked gorgeous on display. Suspiciously gorgeous. The graphics from Doom’s gameplay trailer were phenomenal, which has led some to speculate whether or not it was actual gameplay footage.

I usually take gameplay trailers with a grain of salt, because developers have been known to take advantage of not having a playable demo on-site to make a game look better than it necessarily will at launch. That being said, Doom simply looks like deadly good fun. Deathmatch is back in all it’s glory, and Id went above and beyond by introducing Doom Snapmap —  a forge-style map and gameplay editor that seamlessly allows you to customize and tweak your own dungeons and game modes on the fly, and share them instantly with friends.

In the world of Elder Scrolls, Bethesda announced a new Hearthstone clone called Elder Scrolls Legends. I have very little knowledge of card games, so my opinion in regards to Legends is not worth noting. Card games obviously have their place, I have just not gotten into one before. They also announced more content for Elder Scrolls Online, which I’m sad to say I’ve lost complete and total interest in. ESO has just had a lot of issues, and I think the world of Tamriel is best experienced in a single player campaign.

Arkane came on stage to introduce the long-rumored Dishonored 2. I don’t think the trailer was in-game footage, but it looked beautiful. The whole time, I was noticing a huge lack of Corvo, but after the trailer it was revealed that you would be playing as both Emily AND Corvo and each character has their own unique abilities. I’m on board. Immediately, I was hoping that the campaign would be slightly different depending on who you were playing as, similar to Resident Evil 2.

Arkane also surprised by announcing that there will be an HD remastered Dishonored: Definitive Edition releasing soon. I was surprised that it was Dishonored over all things that ended up receiving the remaster treatment.

Now, to Fallout 4

If you’ve read my previous post about my Fallout 4 wishlist, and you’ve had the chance to see the E3 showcase, then you will know that Fallout 4 is doing everything right. Nearly everything on my wishlist has been included. Fully-voiced, player character, customizable EVERYTHING, updated, and weighty looking combat. It looks like you’ll even get your own Vertibird to travel between places!

Fallout 4, much like I was hoping, begins before the nuclear apocalypse. This is our first real glimpse of pre-war America in the Fallout universe. Due to as of yet unspecified events in Vault 111, you emerge 200 years later as the sole survivor.

I actually have a theory that you aren’t actually a survivor, but are playing as an android copy of your former human self. A “Replicated Man,” as it were. This would help explain the long time spent down in the depths of the vault. It’s also just as possible that this is a more technologically advanced vault being near the Institute, and they have some sort of cryogenic freezing capability.

Then, the great Todd Howard unveiled the new weapon and armor customization. Armor is layered now, and you can upgrade and swap out parts of your very own set of power armor. I think he mentioned 50 base weapons, with numerous customization options. You can finally utilize the random scavenged junk that you pick up to upgrade your equipment. It really is a no-brainer, and the way Bethesda implements these features are ingenious.

You can even build settlements! Build and place furniture, supply power to your abodes, and fortify it from raider assaults. It just looks like Fallout 4 is combining some of my favorite mechanics across multiple games, and are sandwiching it into a delicious hoagie of gigantic proportions.

The Pip Boy is much more interactive now, with fun animated menus. They even went above and beyond to announce that their would be a Pip Boy Companion app that would function as a second screen experience for your smartphone. Add to that, the amazing Pip Boy collector’s edition literally comes with your very own Pip Boy! As a proud owner of my Alduin Statue from the Skyrim Collector’s Edition, I feel essentially obliged to pre-order this now. The Pip Boy is actually functional, and will be capable of housing your smartphone so you can utilize the companion app in style.

It’s overwhelming already how much things we’ll be able to do within the Commonwealth. I can barely contain my excitement. Thankfully, we won’t have to wait long. Fallout 4 releases in less than 5 months on November 10th, 2015, almost four years to the day of Skyrim’s launch. This is how you announce a game, and hugely why I love Bethesda. Take an example from Bethesda, other developers out there. Announce your game when it is pretty much done, that way hype will be at an all-time high. Games coming out in the fall will have their work cut out for them. I’m not envious of these other games. Fallout 4 seems like an end-all-be-all, months of my life draining game experience I’ve wanted for years.

Can’t handle waiting for new Fallout? Tryout the new mobile game Fallout Shelter, available now. It’s an adorable take on structure building, tower defense, and sim-like interactivity. Best of all, it’s free. I accidentally got sucked into it and was playing well into the early morning. It’s surprisingly deep for a mobile game, so it may just sate your Fallout thirst for the time being,

All in all, I was thoroughly entertained by Bethesda’s E3 conference. I’m hoping they’ve increased their staff, and will be making this a yearly show, where they unveil even more new and exciting video games.

UPDATE: There’s one more tidbit of info I learned about Fallout that came up randomly during the Xbox E3 conference. For the first time ever, much loved PC mods that the players themselves have created will be free for downloading and sharing on consoles!! This is huge! One of the big draws to the PC version will be available to us lesser console players.

Fallout 4 essentially won E3 before it even had a chance to begin. I look forward to November.

What was your favorite part of Bethesda’s E3 showcase? Share your thoughts and theories below!

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