When Bethesda announced it was showing off a new Fallout game at E3 this year, it was safe to assume that game would be the major focus of the show. That it would be what we were all be talking about afterward.
That would have been normal. It's Fallout, for God's sake.
But that wasn't the case.
In what I'd call one of the best E3 conferences in recent memory, Bethesda announced The Elder Scrolls VI -- plus a whole new Elder Scrolls mobile game -- a new Doom, a new Wolfenstein, showed off Rage 2 and Fallout 76 (of course) and also showed off its first totally new franchise in 25 years: a science fiction game called Starfield.
It was insane.
So let's start in terms of importance...
Elder Scrolls VI is real
We know nothing. We know literally nothing. All Bethesda, playing alongside the soundtrack to Skyrim. At the conference, Todd Howard called Elder Scrolls VI the next, next game it was working on, so we'll forgive it for that.
The Elder Scrolls: Blades is an all-new mobile game
While we know almost nothing about the next installment of Elder Scrolls, we know quite a bit about its brand-new spinoff,. This is a mobile-first game coming to iOS and Android later this year, with additional platforms promised to follow, including a planned VR mode. And the game will be free to play, too.
Here's the next game Bethesda is working on...
This is Starfield
Again, we know very little except it's a. One would hope it's a science fiction game set in space with the scope of, say, an Elder Scrolls or a Fallout. That's reasonable to assume given the way Todd Howard was talking about it. This is a major Bethesda game. Howard referred to it as the first major new franchise game for the company in over 20 years.
This is a very big deal. I suspect we won't see this game in action for a long time, but it's enthralling to know it exists.
Fallout 76 is a new type of online experience
Earlier at Microsoft's E3 conference, you'd be forgiven for thinking Fallout 76 was a brand-new Fallout game.
It is and it isn't.
. "Of course you can play this solo," explained Howard. But he also mentioned that Fallout 76 is "entirely online."
The idea of Fallout 76: Every human you meet in the world is an actual human being in real life. But Howard stressed that this is a game that will be played with dozens of other players, not hundreds. Survival is the focus.
Howard did an incredible job of communicating the concept of this game to a player base that might not interested in playing an online version of Fallout. "It's a little bit scary," he admitted, but tried to communicate that it was a journey he hoped to take with a community used to single-player experiences.
BioWare, take note: This is how you brace your customers for something a little bit different.
Rage 2 was everything you thought it might be
Rage 2 was the sequel nobody asked for, but we're getting it, so it might as well be a souped-up shooter in the style of Mad Max: Fury Road by a developer who literally just got done making a Mad Max video game.
Considering the aesthetic we've seen so far,: It's pitching itself as a frenetically paced shooter. Think Bulletstorm, think Sunset Overdrive. This could be a lot of fun.
An E3 joke that actually worked
I can't believe they pulled this off. I actually enjoyed an E3 inside joke. Please give me my.
A sequel to Doom is incoming
Doom was a game that looked terrible right up until it was on sale and actually really, really good. A sequel was a no-brainer, and we got it. Bethesda showed very little of this game, but it definitely exists. Plan is to show more at QuakeCon in August.
And the rest
That covers the headlines of the Bethesda E3 conference. But there was also a new Wolfenstein game set in the '80s called Wolfenstein Youngblood...
More information on Quake Champions:
And information on what's next for The Elder Scrolls on online:
What an incredible show.
Earlier E3 news
- Sony E3 2018: The Last of Us Part 2, Death Stranding, Kingdom Hearts 3 and more
- At E3 2018, PC gamers feel like they need their own show
- Ubisoft E3 2018: Star Fox in Starlink, Beyond Good and Evil 2, Assassin's Creed Odyssey and more
- Tomb Raider, Just Cause and Square Enix's E3 announcements
- Bethesda at E3 2018: Fallout 76, The Elder Scrolls VI, Starfield and more
- Microsoft Xbox at E3 2018: New console coming, Halo Infinite, Gears 5, Fallout 76 and more
- EA at E3 2018: Battlefield 5 goes up against Fortnite, Anthem launch in 2019, and more
Editors' note: Updated June 12, 9:04 a.m. PT, to add info on related E3 news.
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E3 2018 coverage at GameSpot: Wall-to-wall coverage of the show from our sister site, GameSpot.
E3 2018 coverage at Giant Bomb: Still more commentary and news from E3, from our colleagues at Giant Bomb.