The age of the E3 press conference may seem to be coming to a close, but they’re not quite dead yet. With EA recently announcing it won’t be holding a traditional press conference at E3 this year, we figured we’d clarify just what you can expect from all the major companies this June.
Microsoft is the only console maker sticking to the traditional press conference this year. Does this mean they have a better shot at taking home E3 show of the year, or are they staying in the past while the competition evolves?
What exactly will be shown at the conference is still largely unknown, including whether Microsoft will unveil anything about the next generation of Xbox. We do know one major game will be showing up for sure though, and that’s Halo: Infinite, which was announced at last year’s Microsoft E3 press conference.
We can take an educated guess at what else we'll see there this year, though. Ori and the Will of the Wisps still has just a "2019" release date, so unless it's getting pushed back I would expect to see an official date this June. You can also look forward to seeing more Gears of War 5, which also has an unspecific 2019 release date.
PC Gaming Show
While the PC Gaming Show has never been the biggest conference at E3, it may be one of the last traditional conferences standing. Put on by PC Gamer, last month the company put out an announcement that it’s looking for game developers to showcase their games at the PC Gaming Show. If this announcement is anything to go by, you can expect to see a lot from independent developers at this conference.
While we don’t know exactly what will be shown at the conference this year, if last year is anything to go off of, you can expect a long, jam-packed conference featuring everything from AAA games and internet personalities to indie announcements and developers. Last year’s show was hosted by Sean “Day” Plott, an eSports commentator, and lasted nearly two hours.
Electronic Arts is dropping its traditional conference in favor of a digital event this year. EA Play is meant to be a celebration of play with “less talk and more play,” giving players hands-on experiences with some of the company’s biggest titles.
The conference we’re all used to is being ditched in favor of a number of live streams throughout the first few days of the event, which begins June 7. EA promises you’ll see “more gameplay and insights from the teams making the games” this year.
While not much is known about exactly what Devolver Digital will bring to the table this year, it’s bound to be wacky and over-the-top. While this showing is promised to take the form of a press conference, you shouldn’t expect the traditional E3 conference from the company, if the past two years are anything to go by.
Devolver Digital’s conference is more akin to a skit, with plenty of poking fun at industry trends and funny ‘audience’ cut-aways to go around. From referring to their 2018 conference as “this year’s jimminy thinger” to promising the show will contain “overly flashy graphics to distract you from mundane dialogue,” the show is bound to entertain, if not so much inform.
Limited Run Games
Taking a similar route to Devolver Digital’s approach to E3, Limited Run Games is likely to put on another faux press conference this year. Check out their presentation last year to get an idea of how it will likely pan out.
The good news is these faux conferences bring very real news with them. Limited Run games is a publisher that takes digital-only games and gives them a small physical release. So if you enjoy digital-only games and want something to put on your shelf to prove it, or if you just don’t trust digital services to stick around forever, be sure to check out Limited Run Games’ E3 presentation this year. We don’t know exactly what will be shown, but the PlayStation Vita has been promised to make an appearance.
Still no word
Nintendo hasn’t held a traditional E3 press conference since 2012, instead showing off games through digital events such as Nintendo Direct. In all likelihood that’s exactly what they’ll do this year, but as of now there’s been nothing but radio silence on what the big N’s plans are for E3 2019.
Nintendo has a strong lineup of games ahead of it, however, so it seems likely you'll hear quite a bit if they hold an event. There's the recently announced Pokemon Sword and Shield, Mario Maker 2, Animal Crossing for Switch, Fire Emblem: Three Houses, the remake of The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening, Luigi's Mansion 3, and of course DLC for already released titles such as Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Nintendo fans likely have a lot to look forward to this June.
Bethesda has traditionally held a press conference ahead of E3, but so far this year the company has stayed silent about its plans. Last year we got a glimpse far ahead into the future with the announcement of The Elder Scrolls VI, but it seems doubtful there would be any more news on that front this year.
If a traditional press conference, or even a digital event, is held, you can probably expect some news on The Elder Scrolls Online, Fallout 76, and the mobile game The Elder Scrolls: Blades. There also may be news on Machine Games' Wolfenstein: Youngblood or id Software's Doom Eternal. Bethesda may even show off a bit of its newest IP which was announced at last year's E3, Starfield.
Ubisoft has also traditionally held a press conference around E3, but has yet to announce plans for 2019. If we hear from the company this year, it will likely be about Beyond Good and Evil 2 and future plans for The Division 2.
You may also hear an announcement of another mainline Assassin’s Creed game, though it would likely be nothing more than a tease if they decide to do so, as the franchise is taking the year off. More likely you'll learn about Skull and Bones, a pirate game taking you on the open seas. Of course, there may always be a brand new series to announce as well.
Another company that traditionally holds a conference, but has yet to make an announcement of its plans for E3, Square Enix could have a few cards up its sleeve. If the company decides to attend E3, we’re likely to get some news on upcoming DLC for Kingdom Hearts III and the next episode of Life is Strange 2.
Besides new game announcements, the company could also show off the announced remake of Final Fantasy VII, or give details regarding the Avengers game which was announced in 2017.
Last November Sony announced it will not be at E3 2019, a first in the conference’s history. The company also skipped its own expo, Playstation Experience, last December. This could be due to a lack of anything significant to reveal, or it may just show the comforts the top dog in the industry can afford to take, but surely Sony wants to find the right time and place to show off its upcoming releases and decided E3 isn’t it.