Massively Overthinking: Massively OP’s E3 2018 awards

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

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A few more thoughts from Andrew, who attended E3 for us this year:

E3 this year felt more like a marathon than a sprint. The new hours, which allowed media into the halls about two hours earlier on the first two days, combined with later hours for everyone, meant I didn’t have to cram meetings in literally back to back. It helped thin out the crowds every so slightly, mostly I think on the industry end who tends to leave on the third day when we all shared the same hours. What this meant was that I had more time for “oops” moments when people ran late or scheduling hiccups forced me to reschedule.

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).

Baby were born to run from the other side.

Here’s a complete roundup of all our coverage of the convention!

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25 Comments on "Massively Overthinking: Massively OP’s E3 2018 awards"

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Dani H

Aren’t you bored of the same old singleplayer games with really cool graphics and stories? Or the same old shooters with some new mechanics and again… the cool graphics?
That’s the only thing that big companies know to produce… Those are just “games”, not immersive worlds, or competitive games, or anything that will keep you playing for more than 1 month.
And could you please stop crying about Rend winning the pool? Are you really that mad and pissed? It is really not the biggest, most important pool of all time, it has only 337 votes as of right now… Let the game launch, see how many players it will have and how good it will feel to play it.
If you have a little patience to read about it, it is indeed full of great ideas, never before seen bound so nicely together. I consider it deserves the title it got, and the people waiting for its release are waiting specifically for its release, while those waiting for cool triple-A games are waiting just for another one because they completed/got bored of the previous ones.

I’m not saying the other titles are not cool, but they are really nothing special or new other than the setup, graphics and a few mechanics.

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Oleg Chebeneev

“Biggest Bummer: Cyberpunk 2077”

ROFL. Even if it doesnt have multiplayer (which we still dont know), who cares? It will be an awesome game regardless. Calling Cyberpunk 2077 a bummer is rediculous.

Also Microsoft had the best presentation, not Bethesda.

And Division 2 wasnt even a mild surprise. It was known they are working on it. Biggest surprise for me was Elder Scrolls Blades

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TomTurtle

I don’t really view games through an MMO-only viewpoint where I’d knock games for not being an MMO. I find that such a strange viewpoint to have honestly.

I found interest in a number of titles at E3, none of which are MMOs. I tend to pay attention to any MMO once it has launched or pushed out an update. Too many titles are in the planning stages and watching and waiting for them got tiresome long ago.

Reader
Robert Mann

Depends on if you are playing any of the games with content coming out, or if you are excited about the various PvP centric titles despite the naivety on display about what happens in such games ( going from the developer’s own statements.)

I’m really not, so… it was pretty dull and dry on the MMO front.

Reader
Paul

Game I should be most excited about Fallout 76 – game I’m most excited about Cyberpunk 2077. My Fallout interest level will be entirely dependent on how avoidable PvP is in that game – as we don’t know for sure yet my excitement level is low. On the whole, not much for traditional MMO players in this E3

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Vexia

I picked Trove Geode, and my reasons are

1) It’s supposed to come out in the very near future. I guess sometimes I get tired of endlessly riding the hype train when in-development features change from their initial intent, or they take an age to come out. I can best wait patiently for far-off things by not burning myself out on hype.

2) I’m pleased to see them putting an emphasis on non-combat content. From what I remember of playing, Trove isn’t exactly a stressful game in the first place, and this can make it even better for little unwinding gaming sessions. There’s a very high chance I’ll pick up with playing Trove again soon.

hurbster
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hurbster

Have to admit, only interested in Cyberpunk. I’d only be interested in a proper Fallout MMO, don’t like survival games, is Blades even an MMO ?

I believe that Murkmire ends the cycle of content that was developed at the time of One Tamriel, should be interesting.

Be interesting to see how many new accounts are voting for Rend.

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Sally Bowls

Might I suggest an “Unclear on why they spent the money” award for ArenaNet? I know it was for business meetings. And time is money so if your budget is big enough, then you will get more people, more efficiently on the floor than in a hotel suite. Perhaps I am just cheap, but it seems like more something for the gogo era and gogo hot companies than current Anet.

NCSoft did just hire someone from Kablam as “company’s chief development officer (CDO). This new role will be responsible for overseeing all development in the west.”

“Joining the executive leadership team at NCSOFT gives me the ability to have a substantial hand in shaping the next generation of digital entertainment,” said Corry. “As I learned more about NCSOFT’s global role as a leader in the games industry, it quickly became clear there is tremendous untapped potential for the brand to expand. In the new chief development officer role, I’ll be bringing my expertise to guide significant, smart investments in NCSOFT’s talent and its future titles of world-class products and legendary experiences across a multitude of platforms. I couldn’t be more excited about the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.”
https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/ncsoft-bolsters-executive-team-by-adding-chris-corry-as-chief-development-officer-300650617.html

So I guess they are going to be spending a lot on “expanding the brand” (*cough* acquisitions *cough*) and a booth is tiny expenditure of that. Although I am surprised they did it under the Anet instead of NCSoft name.

Baseless speculation could wonder if the booth was purchased for an announcement of a product that was not ready. Although, these days, I can’t imagine a product too early or too buggy to announce.

————-

tl;dr: Topic: Anet at E3?

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BalsBigBrother

So Rend is either more popular than I knew about or someone posted on social media. Yup totally social media:

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Brother Maynard

With such Twitter call for support, you’d expect an army of voters totally destroying the poll.

Well, at least we know the number of Rend’s supporters…

Reader
rafael12104

Oooooh. Let me make sure my nerd glasses with tape in the middle are on for full effect. I love geeking out over E3 even though the hype is real but many games aren’t… yet. Lol.

Best reveal for MMO fans? Yup. Fallout 76. Whether you believe to be an MMO or not and even if you didn’t like the reveal because what it does to beloved Fallout, it certainly was a huge announcement. The majority of us who fall such things thought that Fallout 76 would have “an online component” which means allow for limited multiplayer, but nobody was expecting online all the time.

Best Mobile MMO? Hmm. I would have agreed with BDO mobile had I not seen Elder Scrolls Blades. It’s maybe too early to really judge between the two, but I Blades looks fantastic and the idea that it will be multiplayer across platforms including VR is very intriguing. Blades gets the edge from me for now.

Most innovative MMO development? Hmm. I abstain, your honor. Trove seems like a good choice, but seeing is believing and I didn’t see anything at E3 or from E3 that turned my head.

The biggest surprise in MMOs? Yeah, it is The Division 2. I didn’t expect much, to be honest, but it seems Ubi and Massive truly did take the lessons learned from D1 and apply them. I’m looking forward to it more than the initial launch of The Division.

Best presser? Lol. Can we talk about the worst? EA’s was so bad even that personable host couldn’t save it. And btw, who announces a Star Wars game, Fallen Jedi, from the cheap seats with no game vid or appreciable concept art while wearing a ball cap? Who does that? EA does.

And Sony? It was a film noir with the attendees moving from one location to another during the presser for… effect? LOL. They forgot who their real audience was.

Square E? Mailed it in with a video that could have just as easily been made for youtube. In fact, it probably was as it was only 15 mins with no presenters or discussions.

Best Presser goes to Bethesda for actually providing new reveals and info and MS for actually focusing on games and announcing acquisitions.

Andrew Ross
Staff
Andrew Ross

Won’t lie, I’d initially felt the same about Blades, but the floor demo they had didn’t hint at anything that inspired confidence. I feel like skipping a demo and having some informed PR/marketing guys might have actually been a better call. BDM did nearly everything right for an MMO demo, which is saying something about a mobile game.

hurbster
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hurbster

I firmly believe you could hear the audiences’ interest dropping during the Fallout 76 presentation and even further during Blades, hence the two ‘surprises’ at the end.

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Castagere Shaikura

This
I was in a room with about 20 other Fallout fans. And when they said multiplayer everyone at once booed it. So this mean no one i know will buy it. The game will be filled with fortnite/cod kiddies blowing themselves up with nukes.

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Robert Mann

Yep, and the whole revenge scheme thing being supposed to prevent players chasing you by spawning you away from them will… be proven rather fruitless I believe.