It’s that time of year again – E3! What was once an industry-exclusive trade show has become North America’s biggest source of video game announcements and other game-related news for fans and professionals alike. We’ve condensed the best announcements into a daily highlight reel to really feature what we believe are the best games to come.
Today, there were three events held: Ubisoft, Devolver Digital, and Gearbox. Before any of those, though, was a technically-not-part-of-E3 Wholesome Direct from Wholesome Games, which I’ve also included in these highlights. I’d like to toss in a great big thank you to Ubisoft for hard-subbing its presentation, which makes life a teensy bit easier when trying to navigate the YouTube app on Apple TV (seriously, it’s completely counter-intuitive).
All aboard to Port Forward!
Today’s biggest highlight was 100% expected, yet is still the most exciting news! Ooblets is a life/farm-sim and card battle mashup that includes loads of cute ooblets (little animal-like creatures) and so much to explore. Currently in Early Access on Xbox One and Epic Games Store, the game was updated to version 0.8 today. Not only does that mean a full launch is in sight, it also means there is a lot of new things to do in the game. I’m talking an entire new area with Port Forward, which includes arcade games, prizes, several new shops, four new recipes, two new ooblets as well as three uncommon/gleamy variants of existing ooblets, two new stoves, and more, more, more! Port Forward continues the trend of naming locations after computer terms (such as Nullwhere), and also continues the trend of feeling pure joy while playing.
To view the entire Wholesome Direct on YouTube, click here.
What’s better than Mario? Mario + Rabbids, of course!
That may be a contentious statement, but I stand by the fact those kooky Rabbids make Mario’s escapades seem far more interesting. Characters from both long-running series have joined forces once more following 2017’s Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle. This time, in Mario + Rabbids: Sparks of Hope, it’s not just the Mushroom Kingdom at risk – it’s the entire galaxy! An evil entity has been twisting planets under its influence in attempt to consume energy from Sparks, Lumas and Rabbid hybrids. Players can build their ideal party of three from nine options, including Rabbid Peach and Rabbid Mario; each has special abilities to aid in battles that combine turn-based strategy with real-time action. Mario + Rabbids will, unsurprisingly, be a Nintendo Switch exclusive. It will be available sometime next year, but fans can also expect paid DLC further down the road.
To view the entire Ubisoft Forward on YouTube, click here.
Time to take a tumble on the toilet
Okay, that’s not quite right. Let’s try this again! It’s fair to say most of us take our phones to the washroom with us every now and then. Some will browse social media, some will watch stupid videos, and others will play casual free-to-play games. Devolver Digital has decided to insert itself into that last category with Devolver Tumble Time. Developed by NOPOPO, the mobile game will launch for iOS and Android later this year (pre-registration is open now). It’s a physics-based puzzler that features, and I quote, “elegant monetization” and “strategic brand integration.” Never change, Devolver, never change. Devolver Tumble Time features characters from games published by Devolver Digital, with the goal of clearing the tumbler of their cute little heads.
To view the entire Devolver Digital MaxPass+ Showcase on YouTube, with all of its violent/whacky goodness, click here.
Why did the Tribe of Midgard cross the road?
Why, to get to the o-Thor side, of course! Yes, I took that right from Gearbox’s showcase (which seems very Devolver-inspired, with an overall plot and everything), but isn’t it the perfect header? Tribes of Midgard is set in a very colourful ancient Norse world where a Viking hero is tasked with saving the realm by protecting what are basically the seeds of life (or technically, Seeds of the World Tree Yggdrasil). Designed for both solo and co-op play, up to ten players can join a single party while the game automatically adjusts difficulty based on the number of members. The procedurally-generated world is ripe with relics, dungeons, and enemies. There are several different play modes available, and that combined with seasonal updates means the game should stay fresh for quite some time. The previously-announced title, developed by Norsfell Games, will launch for PC via Steam, PlayStation 5, and PlayStation 4 on July 27.
To view the entire Gearbox Showcase on YouTube, including more information on Tribes of Midgard (which begins at the 14:45 mark), click here.
– Lindsay M.