Here's What Was Missing From E3 2019
We learned a ton about a lot of games at this year’s E3. A Breath of the Wild sequel was announced, Keanu Reeves will follow you around in Cyberpunk 2077, and Watch Dogs Legion lets you play as old ladies, among other highlights, reveals, and demonstrations. With so many games presented, it begs the question: What didn’t we see at E3 2019?
This is the big one. Obviously Sony wasn’t expected to be at E3 this year, as the company announced last November it would be skipping the conference in favor of finding other ways to reach out to its community. Since the announcement, it launched its State of Play videos, a series similar to Nintendo Directs with trailers, release dates, and the like. That doesn’t mean we didn’t miss publisher at E3. Its absence from the press-conference scene means we got a Death Stranding release date a week before E3, no Last of Us Part II release date, and no more news on Ghosts of Tsushima. These major games didn’t get the chance to steal the spotlight, but smaller games weren’t given the chance to flourish at the Sony booth, either. A partnership with Sony meant smaller indie titles were likely unable to afford a space on the floor. Games like these were sorely missed, and we eagerly await the next State of Play for more news.
New Switch Models
Sure, this is another example of something we knew wouldn’t be shown as Nintendo said as much during a year-end investor call, but a guy can dream. It seems a little odd we haven’t heard anything about this new hardware since these two new models are reportedly launching this fall. Rumors fly with words like “smaller,” “more affordable,” and “upgrade,” but we still don’t really know anything about these new models. They haven’t even been officially confirmed yet! Sites like techradar.com are even reporting that the two new Switch models are already in active production right now. At this point, all we really want is for Nintendo to confirm that it is really happening.
This comes as a bit of a surprise for fans of the Umbra witch. The game was teased at the Game Awards in 2017, but its development has been quiet since that reveal, with no gameplay, updates, or much of anything else. However, Platinum Games did come out and say that development is going well, and that it simply didn’t want to work on an E3 update and instead just work on the game. This seems like a sound strategy. (Pictured: Bayonetta 2)
Skull & Bones
Skull & Bones, Ubisoft’s open-world sailing-sim piracy game, was announced in 2017 with a 2018 release date. It was then delayed to 2019. Then, a month before E3 2019, it was delayed again, now set for release sometime in 2020. It’s fair to say the development of Skull & Bones is going through some stormy seas, and Ubisoft Singapore simply needed to batten down the hatches and work on the game. As such, its absence from E3 isn’t really a surprise. Better the developers work on the game they want to make than continue to show off an unfinished project.
Fable 4 currently exists as fantasy; it has never been confirmed, only rumored. It was even rumored to be revealed at the Microsoft conference this year, though sadly, we got nothing. Suffice it to say, this is purely something we wished to have seen; not something we expected. Oh well. There’s always next year. (Pictured: Fable Anniversary)
Shin Megami Tensei V
This game was announced, much like Bayonetta 3, in 2017, and, much like Bayonetta 3, there has been nothing shown. In December of last year, the game’s producer Kazuyuki Yamai, said development was still in progress and that fans would have to wait a little longer. Here we are, having waited longer, and still we have seen nothing!
Etrian Odyssey VI was teased after the launch of Etrian Odyssey Nexus on 3DS last year (it launched last year in Japan, this year in America). Series director Shigeo Komori stated Nexus would be the last Etrian Odyssey on 3DS, and that it stands as “an announcement for the beginning of the next stage.” He said that a new world for Etrian Odyssey is in development, and when the new game was reported to be a Switch exclusive last year, fans of the series got excited to see where Etrian Odyssey would go on a new console. Hopefully Nexus can keep that excitement high, because we didn’t see the new game at this year’s E3. Komori said it is working on this new game as quickly as possible, so hopefully fans won’t have to wait too much longer. (Pictured: Etrian Odyssey Nexus)
Persona 5 Scramble: The Phantom Strikers
P5S is not the Switch port we all thought it would be, but rather a musou take on Persona 5. The game was announced this April in a reveal trailer without a release date. The trailer had a glimpse of gameplay, and was announced alongside Persona 5 Royal, which got a target Western release date in 2020. However, outside of an English translation trailer for Royal, neither game was present on the E3 show floor. Royal still has no official release date, and Scramble hasn’t even nailed down a release window. For those of us who want Persona 5 on Switch in any way, E3 2019 wasn’t our year.
Metroid Prime 4
I know, I’m sad too. I want this game to be the best it can be. When the announcement came through saying development was restarting with Retro, we knew its chances of a showing at E3 were slim. There were rumors, however, of a Metroid Prime Trilogy Switch port, which maybe could have helped tide fans over while they eagerly awaited Prime 4. Alas, we received no new information on either game. Better safe than sorry, though, as we wait for the cherished “Nintendo-polish” on Prime 4.
Pikmin 4 has been quiet for far longer than any other games on this list. As far back as 2015, series creator Shigeru Miyamoto claimed Pikmin 4 was “very close to completion.” For those counting along at home, that’s four years ago. Since then, there has been nothing. No trailers, no gameplay, no announcements, no concept art – only small updates that the game is still in development from interviews with Miyamoto. In terms of where this game lies, whether it’s even still in development, cancelled, shelved, or awaiting release, we still have no idea. (Pictured: Pikmin 3)
This adorable little RPG from Pokémon developer Game Freak was announced last year for release sometime in 2019. Since its announcement, there has been little word on the game, and whether or not it’s still coming out this year. Playing as a young adventurer defending a town from monsters looks like fun. Surprisingly, we still don’t have an official release date, or real gameplay.
Anthem, released earlier this year, stumbled on launch. It continues to be going through development strife, and fans who were excited by its premise are eager to share their disappointment. It was expected the game would add content later on to repair its reputation and keep players coming back; BioWare essentially said as much on its blog. While there was a livestream on May 30 to outline an upcoming event, Anthem was noticeably missing from EA’s game lineup. While it was present at EA Play, Anthem was relegated to a quick interview between major segments. There was no Anthem presence to outline updates, mark a release date for the Cataclysm event, or discuss future events.
System Shock 3
A System Shock 3 teaser trailer was dropped at the Game Developer’s Conference this year and it showed of dark environments, creepy enemies, and the return of SHODAN, but that’s about it. The teaser offered no release date, no gameplay, no platforms – nothing. We didn’t know if the game was going to be at E3, but its absence is probably an indicator that the game is still early in development. (Pictured: System Shock Remastered)
Dragon Age 4
A trailer for Dragon Age 4 was revealed at the Game Awards last year, but it was the epitome of a teaser as it showed very little. At the time of the reveal, the game was reportedly in very, very early development and BioWare is also continuing to work on Anthem, so it seems Dragon Age 4 dodged E3 to continue its development this year.
It’s simply not the same without him. As Nintendo fans already know, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aimé retired earlier this year. He was immensely popular with Nintendo fans, known for his awkward humor and the infamous quote, “my body is ready.” Since he stepped down, it isn’t surprising that Reggie wasn’t on the E3 show floor this year, but we were still hoping for a cameo – even a pre-recorded one. We wish him well with his new Twitter, but he was missed. Speaking of missing Nintendo people...
The father of Mario and Link was nowhere to be found at E3 this year. He did appear in a pre-recorded Mario Maker video released during E3, but he was physically missing from the convention center. There was a rumor with little weight behind it that Miyamoto would be presenting at the Microsoft press conference to solidify the companies’ new partnership, but the iconic developer was nowhere to be found.
I’m still waiting! The sequel to Earthbound has been a Japan-exclusive title for 13 years, but that has not stopped fans from asking for a Western port. Fans of the Mother series have been begging for an official English translation for years, to the point where Nintendo now openly jokes about its possibility of ever releasing. Nintendo has confirmed it knows fans want it, but there still has been no word. Maybe if we beg long enough, Nintendo will give in eventually.
There are a couple of games we knew wouldn’t be making an appearance at E3 this year. Some too early in development and some hard at work, but there was no expectation of an appearance at the convention this year. This includes Beyond Good and Evil 2, Starfield, and Elder Scrolls 6. There is very little known about these games, like platform or release date, but that doesn’t mean we didn’t secretly wish for a surprise appearance!