We’ve finished rolling out all of our E3 2018 content this year, save a few last stragglers coming this weekend, so now we’ve chosen our favorites out of what we got to see in person and from afar. Read on, then vote for your own best-in-show!
|Best Reveal: Fallout 76
“The best of the show and the biggest (and most pleasant) surprise was the reveal of Fallout 76 as a fully online MMO,” MOP’s Justin argues. “No, Bethsoft isn’t going to use the ‘MMO’ label, but it sounds far more online and persistent than many survival sandboxes that lack connected official servers.” We’re worried about the PvP and NPC issues, but on the whole, most of us were hyped by the reveal, Justin most of all: “It’s a perfect fit for the Fallout universe and one that I cannot wait to explore.”
|Most Innovative PvP: Rend
Everyone who plays Rend at conventions comes away impressed; this year’s attendee was no different, but the game keeps on flying under the radar for some reason. While Andrew said the floor demo was “lacking” this round, he was “blown away” by the developer presentation and in particular the studio’s plans for PvP and PvPvE. “HOLY GOD, it’s like the devs actually have played and made PvP games before!” he wrote.
|Most Innovative PvE: Trove
I play Trove and still didn’t expect to see it nominated for anything this year, but Andrew was insistent that Geode deserves a solid nod based on what he saw at the con. “New, non-combat content permeates the update,” he notes, everything from laser-mining and rocket boots to raising critters from eggs and spelunking.
|Biggest Surprise: Division 2
Andrew didn’t love his demos of the original Division, so we were super surprised that Ubisoft’s sequel was so awesome at E3, particularly in regard to its incredibly sophisticated AI: “This may actually be a title to watch, not just for general gamers, but MassivelyOP readers who want challenging PvE in a realistic setting.”
|Most Anticipated MMO Content: Elder Scrolls Online
We’d known for many months that Elder Scrolls Online still had more DLC left for 2018, but the reveal of Murkmire and Wolfhunter was easily the highlight of the event for traditional AAA MMORPG players. Elder Scrolls lore fans in particular are hyped at the chance to explore Argonian culture in Black Marsh for the first time.
|Best Mobile MMO: Black Desert Mobile
Even if you’re not a mobile MMO fan – and let’s be honest, most of our readers (and we) prefer our MMOs on PC or at least console – you should still keep an eye on Black Desert’s mobile port, which is way better than a port. In fact, our attendee liked it better than the original PC game, citing its PvE smoothness, superb demo, and of course the tantalizing possibility that it might land on the Switch.
|Most Intriguing MMO: ReEvolve
I pushed to include ReEvolve personally because I’ve been hyped for it since I read the press release. Ecosystems, diurnal cycle, weather, animal migration, crafting, building, housing, farming, animal breeding, PvE, and non-gankbox PvP? And it’s going to run on my phone? OK, PWE. You have our attention. Here’s hoping our next demo is a better one because we’re intrigued!
|Biggest Bummer: Cyberpunk 2077
We should preface this one by saying it’s the biggest bummer for MMO players – we were definitely all hoping it’d be more of an MMO than it apparently will be. “I was very disappointed to hear that Cyberpunk 2077 isn’t going to contain multiplayer at launch, but otherwise it looks like a slick ride,” Justin wrote. Anthem was proposed as a runner-up by Eliot too.
|Best Press Conference: Bethsoft
It takes a lot to get half the team to sit up on a Sunday night and watch a press conference together, knowing the studio will have the video and docs out five minutes later anyway. But Bethsoft made its presentation more than worth it, with one huge reveal after another, for MMO fans and Elder Scrolls fans alike. Most of us agree that Bethsoft won E3 this year, as much as anyone can win at these things.
|Biggest Story: Fortnite & Sony
“Sony gets ‘biggest doofus’ award for its blocking of Fortnite crossplay, which happened at the most unfortunate time for the company,” Justin says. “Everyone is up in arms about this, and Sony did not respond well to it at all.” Definitely the narrative that had the most lingering effect following the con.
And now for the poll — what was your pick for best-in-show (among the games we cover here)? Choose three!
What was the best-in-show for MMO players at this year's E3?
- Fallout 76 (17%, 86 Votes)
- Cyberpunk 2077 (11%, 58 Votes)
- Rend (33%, 172 Votes)
- Fortnite crossplay (1%, 5 Votes)
- Elder Scrolls Online DLC (13%, 65 Votes)
- Trove Geode (2%, 11 Votes)
- Anthem (4%, 22 Votes)
- Division 2 (6%, 29 Votes)
- Black Desert Mobile (2%, 8 Votes)
- Black Desert Xbox One (1%, 3 Votes)
- ReEvolve (1%, 4 Votes)
- Defiance 2050 (0%, 0 Votes)
- The Crew 2 (1%, 4 Votes)
- TERA (0%, 2 Votes)
- Dauntless (1%, 5 Votes)
- Skull and Bones (1%, 6 Votes)
- Mavericks (0%, 2 Votes)
- PUBG (0%, 2 Votes)
- Rapture Rejects (0%, 2 Votes)
- Descent (0%, 1 Votes)
- Something else - tell us in the comments! (1%, 4 Votes)
- No vote - view tally (5%, 27 Votes)
Total Voters: 412
A few more thoughts from Andrew, who attended E3 for us this year:
While I did have some time to wander the floor, I didn’t have time to stand in lines. I thought I’d be able to get a peek at something on Thursday, the traditionally easy day when lines are very short, but the public didn’t give up as easily as last year (and my final meeting didn’t allow for any kind of recording, forcing me to run out and take notes immediately). Readers, know that at a trade show, if press is in line with you, it means we don’t get special treatment. In fact, certain companies with MMOs we tend to cover didn’t respond to our requests to speak with them this year. It happens sometimes when we don’t repeat the company narrative, but it also happens sometimes because, well, we’re a small, niche, indie website.
On the ground, Smash Bros Ultimate made the biggest splash. Even at rivals’ booths people were talking about it, industry and public alike. However, Cyberpunk 2077 ramped up hype quickly behind closed doors with industry. The line was huge, as were the number of rejections I heard as I was waiting for another meeting. A lot of press were excited about Microsoft’s presentation, but many of us were learning about the Sony Fortnite backlash second hand. While most press are used to the green and grey consoles refusing to play with each other, we’d never imagined mainstream media would discuss it.
Perhaps this is because Nintendo of all companies was the first to step in, like a third faction swooping in to make a decisive victory for the weaker side (and that’s precisely what it’s being viewed as). Even among online focused developers that enjoy Nintendo games, bringing them up is often a joke. Nintendo’s status quo for a very long time has been to be the outsider going its own pace, and that pace meant with very minimal internet connection. To have developers seriously discuss pros and cons of the Switch as an online platform felt weird, but the company’s usual silence on further questioning indicates that, no, it hasn’t gone crazy.
Although I lament having Thursday as the almost secret “speed pass” day, the new schedule feels like a better balance between keeping E3 as an industry event while also making space for the general public (and developer-backed vendors to help recoup the costs of the show).
Here’s a complete roundup of all our coverage of the convention!