Bethesda E3 2018 Predictions

by Sage Ashford

Part three of our E3 Predictions series continues with Bethesda Softworks’ presentation. Airing on Sunday June 10th at 6:30PM PST/9:30PM EST, Bethesda has quietly become a staple of E3 conferences even as it becomes more and more difficult for third party publishers to compete. Though their conferences aren’t always the most exciting watch, they have frequently been responsible for some of the best games on the market this generation, from Wolfenstein to Dishonored 2. What do they have planned this year? Well, let’s see.

Rage 2: This popped up out of nowhere, but id Software and Avalanche Studios are apparently working together to bring us a sequel to id’s 2011 FPS Rage. Scheduled to hit sometime in 2019, Rage 2 will likely get a major focus since it’s been reworked into this open world title that will likely be a major release for them.

Prey DLC: Two years ago, Bethesda unveiled Arkane Studios’ Prey, a first person survival horror title about a player seeking to escape a space station full of dangerous aliens known as the Typhon. Releasing in May of last year, we hadn’t really heard much about the title since then–it got strong reviews but as a single player game there wasn’t much to talk about afterwards.
At least, not until Arkane started teasing an announcement scheduled for the same day as Bethesda’s E3 conference. Back in March they tweeted out a teaser asking “Do we really know what’s out there?”, then this past month they added a set of achievements hinting around a DLC set on the moon. Presumably, this will wind up being a standalone DLC in the same vein as Death of the Outsider was for Dishonored.

Fallout ’76: Proving again that certain studios can make gamers do just about anything they want, Bethesda unveiled this a week ago but haven’t said much about it at all. What we do know comes from either 4chan leaks or journalists like Jason Schreier over at Kotaku. Right now what we know is this version of Fallout is an online survival RPG along the lines of Rust. But while we’re in the dark for now, that can’t last for long considering Fallout is such a big deal for Bethesda Game Studios. Expect this to be a central focus for a good portion of their show. There’s also a strong chance this will have a decent mobile component, along the same lines as Fallout 4 + Fallout Shelter, given Shelter’s success.

Elder Scrolls Online: There’s yet to be a conference of Bethesda’s that didn’t have Elder Scrolls Online present. Their latest expansion, Summerset Isles, came out in May for PC and is out today for current-gen systems. Last year they had some a trailer of people reacting to the initial Morrowind reveal, matching the friendly, human approach they took to gaming all last year. This year? Who knows what they’ll have planned–but with one million users playing this game every month, there’s no way it doesn’t make an appearance.

Doom II:  Awhile back someone spoke to Bethesda Senior VP Pete Hines about what the company has planned for this year, and Hines hinted we might see a Doom sequel. Claiming, “Whether or not folks realize it, this is the hell on Earth time for us with E3. We are in the midst of so much planning and work for all of that content but I’m really excited.”
This is the most specific reference he could’ve possibly made, since that sentence doesn’t even make sense unless you know the original Doom sequel’s subtitle was Hell on Earth.
Lightning Round:

  • Starfield’s up in the air right now.  Reliable insiders have hinted it’s not coming this year, which could mean it doesn’t make an appearance at all this E3. If the game isn’t coming until next fall, Bethesda is really good about holding off and giving their games short hype cycles. But there’s talk this game is coming out in the Summer of 2019, which is soon enough that it could warrant giving this game an appearance. So it all comes down to it’s intended release date.
  • Bethesda was extremely into VR last year, so there’s a strong chance we get more of that here. They won’t give up for at least another year.
  • There’s no discussion of The Evil Within 2 DLC, but that doesn’t mean it can’t happen. Most titles these days get some form of post-launch support.
  • Quake Champions was supposed to come out this year, and is currently in early access on Steam. If they really want to play up the game’s official release, here is the best possible time for them.

This isn’t going to be a long show by any means. Last year ran about 35 minutes and this one will probably run about roughly the same as well, unless they really want to show off Fallout and Rage. Bethesda knows how to operate within its means and churn out 2-3 good to great gameplay experiences every year. They’ve built up a group of reliable, talented developers capable of delivering quality titles on a consistent basis. They hit the right mix of playing it safe and staying in their wheelhouse, and going out of their comfort zone to try new things. This won’t be any different.

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