Turn out the lights, pull down the blinds, you don’t have to go home but you can’t stay here. Yes, E3 2019 has come to an end. So many games, so many announcements, so many attendees who didn’t put on enough deodorant. We’ve analyzed every second of gameplay footage and studied each word of the press releases to bring you the most definitive summary of the show. Who had us cheering with excitement, and who left us shaking our heads. We’ve got it all. The winners and losers of E3 2019.
Most Awkward Moment of the Show: Fallout 76 Hype Zone
Listen, we’ll be the first to tell you to be excited about the games that you love. You should be passionate about the hobby that you love and not afraid to show it. But… there is a line to be drawn when you are unable to control your emotions to the point that you can’t help but scream at the top of your lungs at every single sentence uttered on stage. It also seemed weirdly out of place when the launch of Fallout 76 was one of the biggest, most embarrassing dumpster fires in recent gaming memory. Love the things that you love, but show a little restraint. This isn’t your kid’s high school graduation.
Biggest Disappointment of the Show: Everything Coming in 2020
There were a lot of really great looking games at E3 this year. Some were long anticipated games that finally got release dates while others were new announcements that had us anxious to get our hands on them. But it become abundantly clear that the theme of E3 2019 was… coming in 2020. Cyberpunk 2077, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Final Fantasy VII Remake, Watchdogs: Legion, Marvel’s Avengers, Halo Infinite. It might seem like a silly complaint and there’s still plenty of great games coming in 2019, but most of the big games shown are gonna be a bit of a wait.
Worst Cosplay of the Show: Marvel’s Avengers
I love the Avengers. I love Crystal Dynamics. I think that Marvel’s Avengers will be a really cool video game when it comes out next year. That being said, the character designs for the team are just…. bad. Like “the night before Halloween and let’s see what Party City has left” bad. Or “I wonder if I could make Thor in this wrestling game’s character editor” bad. Or “I’m going to Comic Con and all I have for cosplay is $20 and some of mom’s old wigs” bad. God bless them for trying but I hope they go back to the drawing board before the game’s May 2020 release.
Best Glamour Shot of the Show: Final Fantasy VIII
Sometimes you reminisce about the games that you loved when you were growing up and think “I’d love to go back and play that!“, but when you turn it on you find a game so fugly that it’s tough to enjoy the experience. PS1 era Final Fantasy games fall into that category. That’s why it was such a nice surprise to see that for the upcoming rerelease of Final Fantasy VIII they took the time to touch up the characters models so that it looks more like the game you remember in your head. Turns out that she cleans up real nice and now I won’t have to be embarrassed to be seen out in public with her.
Best Surprise of the Show: Blair Witch
Some announcements like a Breath of the Wild sequel or LEGO Forza Horizon are unexpected, but not completely out of left field. But the moment that it became apparent that the trailer from horror developer Bloober Team was for a Blair Witch game? We completely lost our shit. As much as the two of us completely adore the Blair Witch films (at least two of them) and it’s lore, it’s not exactly the hottest property in Hollywood. So to see a great looking game coming in two short months from the creators of Layers of Fear… that just about made the entire show for us.
Best Good Boy of the Show: Bam Bam
I wonder if Ubisoft had any idea that when they arranged to have Jon Bernthal, star of The Walking Dead and The Punisher present Ghost Recon Breakpoint at their E3 press briefing that he would be totally upstaged by a dog. The pit bull is one of three that Bernthal has rescued and was apparently a last second addition to the show. The canine cameo left quite the impression on both the attendees of the show and the audience watching at home. While the Mega Dads might be more cat people, it’s tough to be upset when a cute puppy takes the stage.
Breakout Star of the Show: Ikumi Nakamura
E3 press conferences can be loaded with awkward corporate mouthpieces and inauthentic celebrity cameos, that’s why the appearance from Nakamura was such a breath of fresh air. The protege of legendary creator Shinji Mikami has been involved in lots of big games from Okami to The Evil Within, but now she’s ready for her moment in the spotlight with our own game, Ghostwire: Tokyo. Her charming, authentic and energetic appearance at the Bethesda Showcase left viewers both excited for her intriguing new game and crazy about who could be the next big star of the game development world.
Best Moment of the Show: Keanu Reeves Takes the Stage
Cyberpunk 2077 has been one of the most anticipated video games in the world since we got a look at it at last years E3. This year we got another look at it during the Xbox Press Briefing that re-enforced our excitement, but the icing on the cake was when it was revealed that John Wick himself, Keanu Reeves would have a role in the game. And as the crowd went wild, the man himself walked out on stage to reveal the release date of the game. It left the crowd stunned and unleashed the catchphrase of E3 2019. “You’re Breathtaking!”
Game of the Show: Final Fantasy VII Remake / Blair Witch (tie)
One is a long in development remake of one the most beloved JRPGs of all time, the other is an indie horror game based on a cult classic. Final Fantasy VII Remake and Blair Witch represent what was so good about this year’s E3, the fact that there was something for everybody. In FF7 we’re getting a painstakingly recreated vision of a game that the two of us loved when we were younger, but it’s reinventing itself at the same time so that it will feel fresh and different. Blair Witch comes from the creators of Layers of Fear, a developer that seems to be tailor made to tell this kind of story. Come August, we’ll be playing with the lights out and headphones on, completely scared out of our minds. There were a lot of standout games this year. but these two left us the most excited.