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E3 2021 : the ultimate BGeek wishlist

E3 2021 is just around the corner, starting on June 12th. The yearly Electronic Entertainment Experience will take place online over the course of four days. Many of our favorite publishers and distributors will be participating, but we know little about what they will be presenting exactly. The B-Geek team has collaborated on the below wishlist, which contains subjects we hope will be covered during the event. What do you wish to see? 

Nintendo Direct E3 2021

New console?

There has been a lot of speculation for years now, but the amount of rumors seems to have quadrupled over the last few months. Is Nintendo working on a new Nintendo Switch? A Nintendo Switch Pro maybe? If they are, we expect some sort of announcement during E3. Especially information on the technical specs, price and release date of a new console. However, Nintendo already announced on their social media that they will only be talking about upcoming software releases.

Nintendo games

The main Nintendo game we’re looking out for during E3 2021 is the sequel to Zelda: Breath Of The Wild. Hyrule Warriors already gave us the prequel, but let’s be honest: that’s not what we have been waiting for. BOTW 2 has been teased ages ago, it’s high time for some gameplay footage or even a release date.

We wonder if some DLC for Animal Crossing New Horizons could be in the making, since certain beloved characters are currently not present in the game. Nintendo could also announce more free updates to the game, which would of course be preferable. 

We definitely need some more footage of Pokémon Legends Arceus. We’re still not 100% convinced we will get the open-world Pokémon game we have been wanting, but some new footage may put our minds at ease.

Detective Pikachu is also set to be released in 2021, but currently without a known release date. They say the conclusion will be different than that in the 2019 blockbuster movie, so color us curious! 

Finally it would be nice to learn more about Splatoon 3 during E3. Maybe receive some info on how development is going, if there’s a release date or not. And just maybe, like they did when Splatoon 2 and the original Nintendo Switch came out, a special Splatoon 3 edition of the Nintendo Switch Pro? Are we still allowed to have dreams in 2021? 

Warner Bros

We are most definitely looking forward to a new gameplay trailer for Hogwarts Legacy during E3 2021 and hope to receive a release date as well.
With Hitman III being released early this year they might want to hit big and announce a new Mortal Kombat game. The Mortal Kombat movie that came out earlier this year would be a good pre-hype method and tie-in to the game.

Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League has flown under the radar, shrouded by Gotham Knights controversy in lieu to the Avengers game fail. With Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League releasing in 2022 we would like to see some early gameplay footage. And some reassurance that Gotham Knights will learn from the mistakes Avengers made.

Ubisoft

Ubisoft will probably be one of the announcements that will leave little impact. They revealed the Far Cry 6 gameplay trailer at the end of May. And already announced that the Ubisoft Forward panel will have more information about Far Cry 6. Nevertheless it looks like their main headliner will be Rainbow Six Siege: Quarantine (or Extraction).

Rainbow Six Siege: Quarantine (or Extraction) is a co-op player game (or event) set in the Tom Clancy’s: Rainbow Six universe. Featuring your favorite (or not so favorite) operators from Rainbow Six: Siege. Taking on the plague that has unleashed and its deadly special variations that hunt you down. The well received Outbreak event is what sparked the development of this co-op iteration.

Nevertheless we are hoping to see some more on the Hearthlands game which takes place in The Division universe/cycle. But The Division Team already announced they will not be attending Ubisoft Forward. What exactly does Ubisoft want the game to be, a looter-shooter or survival experience like the survival mode of The Division 1? We will have to wait a bit longer.

We think Ubisoft should really pull out all the stops and introduce something new to their line-up. Will Riders Republic break that cycle of Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry games and take the talent of the studio to a new adventure? Unlikely, because they are still making profits: “don’t change a winning tactic” is a good strategy after all.

Gearbox

The current Borderlands 3 DLC has ended and with it the expectations for an announcement for Borderlands 4 are high this E3 2021 edition. And not only for the Borderlands franchise; Gearbox has had some stuff going on that could make their expo pretty surprising.

For starters, Gearbox was bought by the Embracer group, a Swedish video game holding company that also owns Koch Media/Deep Silver and THQ Nordic. It’s always interesting to see what such an acquisition will do to the developer that creates your favorite franchise. The acquisition of Bungie into Activision, which created the first paid model of Destiny 1, is an example of that.

But it can also open new doors as funding increases for other franchises Gearbox owns. Like Brothers in Arms or Duke Nukem. We wouldn’t be surprised by a teaser-trailer that isn’t borderlands related. Some of us are looking forward to some Homeworld 3 gameplay and a release date.

It’s pretty wishful thinking though as the development team announced in April that they aren’t ready to reveal a release date or more gameplay trailers. And Gearbox has been teasing Homeworld Mobile, which will probably steal the spotlight when it comes to any Homeworld announcement.

Microsoft dominates E3 2021

We’ve been telling you for a while now. Sony managed to snatch the last-gen a pretty clean win in the last-gen console fight, but we believe Microsoft has this gen in the bag. And they fully plan on showing off during E3 2021. Phil Spencer is making a huge bet on the E3 conferences, he even brought out Keanu Reeves in the last one. And don’t forget that this year marks the Xbox brand’s 20th anniversary. They’re planning to go bigger than 2019 on this year’s joint Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase. Hear us out:

Bethesda

Hyped is the really short summarization of our expectations for Bethesda in this E3. The Elder Scrolls 6 and Starfield had teasers back in 2019 and we are hoping the COVID crisis didn’t impact the development. We’re hyped for a trailer of both games and hopefully some gameplay footage as well. Probably the two biggest titles that got us on the edge of our seats.
But let’s not forget the Fallout franchise: are we going to get a teaser for a new Fallout game this year? Stijn Ginneberge from our team is a huge Fallout fan and he will probably scream like a fangirl at the slightest hint.

This will also be the first E3 Bethesda will attend after Microsoft has acquired them. Will there be any major changes to the presentation? Are we going to see Xbox/Windows PC Exclusive games like Sony has done in the past? Is Todd Howard banned from saying “it simply works”?

Bethesda is definitely one of the studios we have our eyes one. A hopeful and skeptical eye.

Game Pass

There’s no denying it: Game Pass is a massive hit. It’s the major driving force behind Microsoft’s recent success. The general consensus on the Internet is that Microsoft is trying to expand Game Pass across multiple different platforms. People are begging for Game Pass to become available on Steam, because an organized library makes for a happy gamer. It’s quite bold to assume that Microsoft would be willing to sacrifice the popularity the Microsoft Store has gained thanks to Game Pass. But in all honesty, it’s not that far-fetched of a theory. It’s no secret that Valve and Microsoft have kept some pretty close ties over the years. Most of Xbox Game Studios’ games are available on Steam anyway, so it wouldn’t be much of a surprise. Plus, could you imagine the rise on Game Pass for PC subscriptions?

JRPGs

And here comes the hotter topic: GAMES! There’s bound to be at least a couple of announcements for new games coming to Game Pass. While Xbox Game Studios games are always going to be available on Game Pass, third party titles are mostly kept on rotation. That means there’s quite a few that get in every month, while others leave the service. And lately, the Game Pass genre of focus has been JRPGs.

Xbox has been trying to appeal to the Japanese audience for the longest time. With Nintendo and Sony being native Japanese companies, it’s obvious that the Japanese people would prefer them over the Xbox. And that’s why Xbox is missing all that Japanese crafted charm. But, they’ve been making huge strides trying to turn this ship around. Every single Final Fantasy game has been on Game Pass at some point (although, VII Remake is still a PS exclusive). The whole Yakuza franchise is available on Game Pass right now. Dragon Quest XI, Code Vein, and even Octopath Traveler (who’d have thought, huh): they’re all on Game Pass. But you know what would be the biggest Japanese hit if it was on the service? 

A Persona game. Persona 4 Golden was a huge success when it launched on Steam, and the Persona franchise has developed its own loyal following. It’s only natural for SEGA to try and expand the franchise on as many platforms as possible. There’s quite a few industry insiders teasing Persona 5 coming to Xbox. And if it’s indeed coming, there’s no better place to announce it than the – all digital – E3 2021 stage. Persona 5 Royal on Game Pass is definitely on our wishlist. 

Ubisoft?

But what about new publishers coming to Game Pass? Well, Ubisoft is the most obvious contender for this one. Not a lot of their games have been on Game Pass so far, but Microsoft loves making a huge deal out of games being Day 1 on the service. Far Cry 6 seems like a game that would make waves if it was on Game Pass. Assassin’s Creed is also a major franchise that has never been on the service, and Valhalla has been received extremely well. That’s free real estate for Xbox.

343 Industries

Ah yes, the obvious first announcement. Microsoft is obviously going to open up E3 2021 with Halo. It’s the game that made the Xbox the titan it is today, and 2021 marks the franchise’s 20th anniversary. Halo Infinite was teased very briefly on E3 2019 and it’s been on every Xbox owner’s wishlist since then. We honestly don’t know that much about the game, even though we got an 8-minute gameplay reveal last year and 343 has given some major updates on the development on Halo Waypoint.

Still, Microsoft has kept Infinite under tight wraps. Lots of things have changed since the 2019 reveal. Infinite is now running on a new ‘next-gen’ graphics engine, and that must have been quite obvious from the gameplay reveal. Nonetheless, they slapped it with a ‘coming when it’s ready’ sticker. But honestly, we can see them releasing it this year. Halo’s 20th anniversary is quite fitting for the most ambitious Halo game to come out, and it’s also going to be a major console-seller.

Obsidian Entertainment

Listen up, gang! Out of all the acquisitions Microsoft has made over the recent years; Obsidian might just be among the most exciting ones. Developers of Fallout New Vegas, The Outer Worlds and Pillars of Eternity. Obsidian has a lengthy history of making amazing RPGs. So, when they revealed Avowed last year, everyone just lost their minds a little. Bethesda might not be giving us The Elder Scrolls VI just yet, but Avowed is the next best thing.

A medieval fantasy RPG sounds exciting enough right? Truth is, Obsidian has been working on even more projects. Grounded is still in early access and hasn’t received an official release date, but it’s safe to say this is one of the most unique projects we’ve seen in a while. Job listings have also indicated that Obsidian is working on a FPS/RPG hybrid. It’s unclear whether that’s a sequel for The Outer Worlds, Fallout: New Vegas (???), or even a brand new game.

Playground Games

Racing games have always been a technical showcase for new console launches. PlayStation has Gran Turismo 7 lined up, and Xbox obviously has a new Forza in store. Industry insiders have indicated that it’s going to be a new Horizon game, probably set in Mexico. That doesn’t sound too interesting of a setting honestly, especially compared to earlier rumors that had the game set in urban Japan. However, Playground Games have never disappointed with their Forza games, and Horizon games are always a blast. 

And what about Fable? After Lionhead Studios closed down, Playground has taken up the development of the franchise reboot. The only Fable-related thing we’ve gotten thus far is a simple teaser, but Microsoft is sure to at least show something at E3 2021. Fable has been in development since 2017 and it’s described as a AAA open-world/RPG.

Ninja Theory

If there’s any game that can take down Sony’s God of War, that’s definitely Hellblade. Ninja Theory took the world by surprise back in 2017 in their portrayal of Senua’s emotional story. And now they have Microsoft’s big-boy budget to play around with and create a worthy sequel. Although we might not get a release date, or even a gameplay reveal, Microsoft is sure to at least show a cinematic along with more info on this game. It’s one of their biggest bets.

Double Fine

Anyone noticed how Psychonauts is now available on Game Pass? Weird time to include it in the service, huh? Unless… Well, Psychonauts 2 is pretty much as good as confirmed to launch within the year – if not this summer – by industry insiders. It might come as a surprise to many, but Psychonauts is considered an absolute cult-classic at this point. As much as the original, Psychonauts 2 promises to be an off-the-rails fun adventure, with rather serious themes as its premise. We can’t help but get excited.

The Initiative

Perfect Dark was revealed last year at The Game Awards, and it’s one of the most exciting games in recent memory. It’s weird to think how the last sci-fi spy game we got was Obisidian’s Alpha Protocol back in 2010. And it… um, had potential. While the original Perfect Dark was made by Rare, The Initiative is taking extra measures to make sure that the reboot lives up to the blockbuster moniker. And probably the budget too. This is set to be the studio’s first game, and it’s quite an ambitious project as well. We’ll have to keep an eye on this one during E3 2021.

Square Enix at E3 2021

Ooh, this is another major one. After a rather disappointing close to 2020 with Marvel’s Avengers, Square is coming in with a hot hand in 2021. They’ve already released Outriders and NieR Replicant, both being rather well received, and they’re releasing an enhanced version of Final Fantasy VII Remake this week too. They’re bound to have a few projects in store.

Final Fantasy

This is the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Square. Final Fantasy is an iconic franchise, and quite a lot of people are hyping up E3 2021 as it being ‘Final Fantasy’s time to shine’. Final Fantasy XIV is getting the new Endwalker expansion this November, but we already knew that. What’s getting people excited is the possibility of a new mainline series entry. Final Fantasy XVI is heavily awaited, as it’s going to have a medieval setting.

But what’s getting us really hyped is the announcement of Final Fantasy VII Remake Part 2. The first part was very well received, and we think it’s time we at least get a look at the second part of the story. And I don’t know, maybe it gets ported to Xbox and PC? 

Forspoken

This is the most exciting new project from Square. The official title was announced only recently, and it’s supposed to be a cinematic narrative-driven fantasy adventure. It kinda looks like a Last of Us mod for Black Desert though. In true Square Enix fashion, the scenery looks breathtaking, and the story is rather interesting as well. Forspoken is the story of a young girl that gets thrown into a magical world with dragons and magic. It’s developed by Luminous and will be coming to PS5 and PC. We’re obviously not going to get too much info, since the title was only revealed in March. We still hope to at least get a full-blown trailer or even some gameplay.

Babylon’s Fall

Platinum Games sure know how to make games with great settings and amazing combat. NieR Automata and Bayonetta are straight-up masterpieces. And now they’re making Babylon’s Fall, a medieval sword-fighting game. As the teaser shows, Square is quite aware that when it comes to Platinum Games, you don’t even need to tease the story. The audience already knows the game is going to be extremely fun. Revealed back in 2019, we’re bound to get a release date at E3 2021.

Take Two Interactive

Rockstar

Alright, before we jump on the GTA VI bandwagon, let’s get something out of the way. Even if we do get an announcement, it’s probably going to be a brief teaser. However, we do think it’s high time we get a new Grand Theft Auto game. The next-gen version is coming in the second half of the year, so don’t get your hopes up.

2021 marks the 20th anniversary of the franchise-defining Grand Theft Auto III. Will we get a remake? Probably not. Rockstar hasn’t teased anything yet but we might get a GTA VI announcement based on that. This year is also the 15th anniversary of Bully, and it’d be such a shame to never get a sequel. Bully is a cult-classic by now, and we’d be more excited to see a sequel to GTA’s high school version, than just a teaser for the mainline GTA series.

Cloud Chamber

We know we’re getting a new BioShock game at some point and we know Cloud Chamber is the studio behind it. We also know that Ken Levine is not associated with this game, which might sound troubling. Cloud Chamber was formed only recently, in 2019, so we’re probably only getting a teaser or a cinematic trailer at most. Nonetheless, it’s always exciting to see where a beloved franchise is heading next.

That’s all folks!

You made it to the end of our ultimate B-Geek wishlist for E3 2021. Trust us, we could have made this article EVEN longer, but we have to stop it somewhere right? We’re definitely excited and will be following E3 closely. Hopefully we were able to provide some interesting insights and get you as hyped as we are. Be sure to check out the official E3 website to learn more about all the showcases, when they take place and how you can follow them.

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Romy Vermeeren

Posts published: 65

Cat lady, linguist, all round geek. Always gaming with my boyfriend, reading fantasy books, watching anime or wasting money on shiny cardboard.