Every press conference of E3 2015 has concluded, and Invisible Gamer is taking a different approach when it comes to covering them. Instead of scrambling to keep up with the deluge of announcements moment-to-moment, we’ve let the news settle and cool in our brains in order to give you our thoughts on what the gaming industry has in store for the near future. We’ve already talked about our favorite surprises at each of the conferences this year, so that means it’s time to go negative. Let’s take a look at the biggest disappointments of this year’s events, from the perspective of many of our staff writers.
Frankie Millington: Although Bethesda had some amazing content to show at E3 this year, there were some downsides to the showcase as well; very few downsides, but there were some nevertheless.
- One that I can think of right off the bat is the absence of Elder Scrolls information. I was hoping to see more about Elder Scrolls Online, or a teaser for the next installment in the main flagship franchise, but we just got a Hearthstone-esque mobile card game. I’m not too heartbroken, but I’m hoping for more Elder Scrolls next year.
- Another downside was the fact that the Fallout Shelter App is only for iOS devices, which leaves Android users like myself in the dust. I’d like to be the overseer of my own vault on an Android device as soon as possible, but we’ll probably see it on Android at some point in the future.
- I also wasn’t the biggest fan of Battlecry. Don’t get me wrong, the game looked cool, but the MOBA-like gameplay just wasn’t appealing to me. Really, though, Bethesda did a great job at E3 this year and I wasn’t too disappointed, as you can probably tell.
Jonah Ort: Microsoft certainly stepped their game up from years past, but their conference certainly had a few blunders and missed opportunities.
- The Forza Motorsport 6 reveal was a whole bunch of fluff with very little content. Was it really necessary to lower that car from the ceiling, just to put it back up again a mere 45 seconds later? I would be less put off by the pompousness of the whole reveal if there was more gameplay shown, but the trailer showed too few new features and too much of the same-old-same-old.
- It was great that Gears of War 4 had gameplay footage, but it bums me out that the HD remake of the original game got so much attention during the press conference. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge Gears of War fan; it just feels weird to have a remake center-stage, especially when it looked like a rather bare-bones re-release.
- That new Elite controller for the Xbox One looks fantastic and I’d love to buy one if it didn’t cost nearly half the amount of the system itself. I understand that it’s high-end, but who’s really ready to shell out $150 for a gamepad? The controller looks nice, but not $150 nice.
Gabe Gurwin: EA’s conference was miles better than last year’s effort, but that doesn’t mean that the publisher has fixed all of the problems that typically make its E3 show such a drag. Need for Speed and Plants vs. Zombies aside, there were some giant missteps this year.
- We get it: Pelé is the world’s best soccer player. That doesn’t mean that FIFA will be any better this year, and leaving him out on stage for several minutes doesn’t help. EA’s tendency to showcase athletes instead of new features for its sports games can only hurt fans’ confidence in the various series.
- Two years in a row, EA has teased the new Mass Effect at its conference. Two years in a row, there has been no gameplay shown. The big announcement at E3 2015 was an official title — Mass Effect: Andromeda — but one can’t help but think that this game is still at least a few years away.
- DICE is obviously focusing on multiplayer for Star Wars: Battlefront, and that component looks remarkable, but the “missions” — which were actually shown off at Sony’s show — simply look like a tacked-on feature so that EA can advertise it as both a single-player and multiplayer experience. An honest-to-goodness Star Wars campaign using the Frostbite engine would have been a welcome addition.
Tristan Ettleman: Ubisoft’s conference and its usual host Aisha Tyler may have been a littler tamer than recent years, but a few moments of awkwardness led to feeling a bit let down.
- Most awkwardly, we had to yet again endure a lengthy Just Dance segment that included a painful performance by Jason Derulo. I’ve never played a Just Dance game and don’t really plan to, so I can’t really speak to how the game looks or what Ubisoft is doing with it, but I’m disappointed that the company hasn’t learned to not have people sing on stage.
- We got a trailer showcasing a humanoid cat-person with gold guns riding a fire-breathing unicorn at Ubisoft’s conference. Unfortunately, it wasn’t for a Far Cry 4: Blood Dragon-style DLC package; rather, it kind of acted as a Blood Dragon-style DLC package for Trials Fusion. Admittedly, it’s a little unfair to be disappointed with something for being what it is; Awesome Level Max looks like it will be fun for Trials Fusion fans, but the trailer led me to believe that it was going to be something more.
- Finally, I was a little disappointed in Assassin’s Creed Syndicate’s showing at the conference. I’m not as down on Assassin’s Creed as others are (even though I haven’t played the recent games), but I still didn’t really appreciate the cinematic trailer that we received. The Victorian London setting looks like it has a lot of potential for history-based action, but I wanted to see how that action will look when we can actually sit down and play the game.
Austin Clark: Despite the high marks from Sony’s conference, they still had some areas that were a bit underwhelming. While Sony’s first half was seemingly nothing but fan service, I still hoped there would be some things shown that never came to be.
- The second half of the conference completely lost steam for me. After surprise and new announcement one after another, Sony eventually slowed down and decided to show a lot of what everyone expected…for awhile. Disney Infinity, Call of Duty, Batman; all these games are great in their own right, but what was shown didn’t even come close to being as exciting as what we saw earlier. Even the Uncharted 4 closer didn’t really have that punch that makes socks get blown off.
- No Morpheus! Save for a brief mention that basically was, “Hey, play it on the floor.” Morpheus was all but absent from the show. I can assume Sony didn’t want to give time to their VR tech because they didn’t really know how to present it. After all, most of the media simply say, “You have to try it to understand it.” But still, with their consumer product seemingly getting ready for launch early next year, I felt like some kind of demo should have been done to get me prepared.
- No Vita! Okay, so I believe the Vita was mentioned about 2 times due to cross-buy and shown in a montage, but it’s clear Sony is just letting the little handheld run whatever course is left for it, despite those who own it’s fervor for more support.
Tristan Ettleman: The internet has been clear on its feelings for Nintendo’s E3 Digital Event, and they’re mostly made up of disappointment. I can understand that sentiment.
- It’s clear that the announcement of Metroid Prime: Federation Force isn’t what fans wanted out of a Metroid Prime announcement. And I feel the same way. Featuring chibi-esque bounty hunter characters, Federation Force looks like Metroid: Four Swords, and includes a 3v3 sport mini-game called Blastball. While the game may turn out to be great, it was certainly a disappointment to learn that we’ll have to wait even longer for the next major installment in the Metroid series.
- When more Animal Crossing was shown after a Happy Home Designer trailer, I was certain that we were going to be getting a Wii U installment of the series. Instead, we got a look at Animal Crossing: Amiibo Festival, which looks to be Animal Crossing Party. I was delighted by the Animal Crossing amiibo that were shown off, but a Mario Party-like that relies heavily on, if not requires amiibo use is not what I wanted from a new console Animal Crossing.
- There wasn’t much else explicitly disappointing about Nintendo’s event. Sure, a 3DS version of Hyrule Warriors and a Wii U Mario Tennis aren’t exactly exciting for me, but what was more disappointing about the show was the absence of big surprises. The games that look best were already known quantities, like Star Fox and Fire Emblem. Nintendo always has it tough when it comes to fan expectations, because of all the properties they could return to, but this year felt particularly shallow when it came to E3 announcements. That might just be the nature of the year-round Nintendo Direct cycle the company is implementing, however.
Austin Clark: I’ve talked to a lot of folks who feel like Square Enix had one of the weakest conferences at E3. I don’t really agree with that, but there were definitely some problems with the company’s event.
- You can’t ignore the fact that Square really showed off nothing but trailers. Some of those trailers had gameplay in them, but it doesn’t really count. I was really disappointed we didn’t get any type of demo of Kingdom Hearts III that would have given us a tour of an environment and explained the mechanics. I mean, come on! We’ve been waiting how long?
- In our list of E3 surprises, I said that the newly announced studio and JRPG project Square Enix announced was something I didn’t expect, and I’m happy it’s real. But honestly, it’s also incredibly disappointing! We barely know anything about it. Why show something off at your big press conference when you have nothing to show off?
- I hate being that guy who acts like a press conference should be a party, but Square Enix’s show felt very stiff, very professional, and just not very fun. The structure was flat and the pacing was slow. I don’t think what they showed and talked about was bad, but I definitely can’t ignore how by-the-books it felt.
While it’s good to vent frustration and disappointment about video games in a public forum, we also shouldn’t dwell on the negative when it looks like we’ll be getting many great games in the next few months and years. That being said, vent some more with us and let us know what you were disappointed with at E3 2015.