Emma’s Evaporating Economy: E3 Highlights

Hey everyone, Emma here! In case you didn’t know, the big E3 press conferences happened this last weekend, and I managed to catch them all. Except for EA’s, but technically that wasn’t actually an official E3 presentation so it doesn’t count. I mean, neither is Nintendo’s but…ANYWAY. Semantics aside, it was a pretty decent E3. It wasn’t the most exciting- I’d say only Nintendo (and CD Projekt Red, sort of) managed to pull off a genuine surprise- but it definitely still offered a good selection of things to look forward to. I mean…

And, like, after I posted that, I realized I had missed some things and quickly added them. AND THAT DOESN’T EVEN INCLUDE MY BACKLOG. I finally got back in to Dad of Boy, but I’m really gonna have to knock that out. I ordered Bloodstained and Judgement already.

I gotta start being discerning, don’t I? Learn some self-control or something. 


Anyway, we posted our in-the-moment highlights from each conference on our Twitter, so check that out and share your own. Now that I’ve had some time to sit with it, I’ve picked the single best part of each conference (minus EA, sorry EA) and laid it out here.


Microsoft again suffered from the problem they had last year for me: yeah, they showed a lot of cool trailers, but hardly any of them were exclusives, and the ones that were didn’t convince me that I needed an Xbox. They’re picking up good studios (sort of nervous about that though), so maybe that’ll change down the line. Speaking of, it was cool that they talked about their next generation, although I must admit that I’m not as…passionate about tech specs as I could be. Like, what is the visual difference between 120 fps and 60 fps and what does 4K even mean and…why do I want it? Madelyn’s TV will be the size of a toaster no matter what the console is doing.

Anyway, the easy pick for the highlight would obviously be Keanu Reeves and, it’s true, he was breathtaking. I’m rather pessimistic about Cyberpunk 2077 and the mess it’s going to make of my Twitter timeline, however, and not even Keanu can totally sell me. Other stuff that caught my interest were Psychonauts 2, Spiritfarer, A Way to the Woods, and The Outer Worlds. Also some of the stuff in the indie montage, which was way too fast by the way.

Also, all I can say to fans of the Game of Thrones books: I’m sorry. We’ve taken George from you. Procrastinating using video games is hella relatable though.

My highlight: Tales of Arise

Okay, yes, I’m exposing myself as a sucker for JRPGs, but I think I’ve already done that plenty on the podcast. Look, I really do have a soft spot for Tales. Not only do they include couch co-op, but they’re also just good comfort food. And Tales of Arise looks incredible. The new combat looks cool, and the graphics are such a step up even from Tales of Berseria (my current favorite of the Tales games).

Plus the pink-haired girl has a magic sniper rifle and, honestly, what else could I want from a game? Just confirm that there’ll still be co-op and Arise will have me.


There were some hype men in Bethesda’s crowd, that’s for sure. I can’t quite decide between this and Ubisoft as the weakest conference. There were a few more games at Bethesda that I was personally interested in, but I think Ubisoft gave a stronger presentation on the whole. Bethesda also mostly avoided the topic of their two big projects. I can’t say I’m terribly interested in Elder Scrolls 6 or Starfield anyway, but that’s mostly a product of having heard nothing about them.

But hey, they seem to be trying to make Fallout 76 into a real Fallout game, so there’s that? The crowd was very hyped for the human NPCs which…were there none before? The more I hear about Fallout 76, the more amazed I am by its mess. Well, Todd Howard was very Todd Howard about it so, there’s that. He also sat down for a talk with Elon Musk later in the week which I did not watch and don’t want to hear about. I just want to pretend that something like that never happened. Capiche? Capiche.

I do think that Madelyn and I are pretty much required to try and play Wolfenstein: Youngblood together, despite having never gotten around to any of the other Wolfensteins. I mean, co-op, sisters, and we suck at first-person shooters so there’s a rife potential for comedy here as we totally fumble our way through every single combat encounter. Yup, we should do it. MADELYN YOU LISTENING?

My highlight: GhostWire: Tokyo

While Death Loop definitely also has my attention, I was really taken in by the GhostWire: Tokyo trailer (along with the charming presentation by Ikumi Nakamura). I haven’t played either of The Evil Within games just because I usually can’t handle horror, but I’ve heard good things about them, especially the second one. And GhostWire just showed off an incredible aesthetic in its trailer while the description of the gameplay sounded right up my alley. I like solving mysteries and facing challenges. Also Hawkeye/Ronin was in it, so he managed to make it in a game after being kicked out of the Avengers.

Just kidding, this guy looks cooler than the MCU’s sad sack version of Hawkeye.


So, I mean, how do I pick between Helen and Bam Bam?

I can’t say I was interested in much of what Ubisoft had to show, but they showed it well, mostly. It was a little strange that they showed off so little of Gods & Monsters considering that it’s coming out before Watch Dogs Legion. But it looks like a cutesier God of War, and that’s really all you need to show in order to sell me personally. We had that big yellow book of Greek myths as kids after all.

Other stuff included a…TV show. Okay. And, of course, there was Rainbow Six Siege and Ghost Recon. That second one is notable for Bam Bam Bernthal having his moment in the spotlight. The Division 2 also looks like it’s making some promising expansions. There was a dancer in a panda suit. That’s always cool.

I think my highlight is pretty obvious on this one.

My highlight: Watch Dogs Legion

I couldn’t really get in to Watch Dogs 2, but that was mostly because I wanted to play non-lethally and that made every mission like 12 times harder. I probably should have just leaned in to the destruction, and I would have had a better time. Madelyn and Clickbait Boyfriend have my copy now. Maybe they’ll get around to trying it out in the future and report back to me. 

But man, this game is ambitious. Hugely ambitious. It certainly caught my attention with its gimmick of playing as anyone. Anyone. Just wow. If they can pull it off, even to like 50% potential, it’ll be incredibly impressive. I’m skeptical, but I’m also eager to see how it goes.

I really feel like there’s a mixed message coming from Ubisoft though. Its marketing department really wants you to know that its games aren’t political, goshdarnit, but there’s no way you can say that Legion isn’t making a political statement. Hopefully the team has put some thought into the way it portrays community organizing and grassroots rebellion, even if the higher up want to pretend that they haven’t.

Square Enix

Square Enix was the definition of a solid show. They showed what they wanted to show with little to no hiccups, and what they showed all looked pretty good. I’m a little disappointed in Avengers if only because I was hoping for a different team than the movies, but it overall looks like it’ll be a fun time. They also got to show off their various upcoming remasters and ports. I’d already seen the ReMind trailer, but of course I enjoyed that anyway. I’m certainly very happy for players of Final Fantasy XIV. The next expansion looks like fun, and if I were ever to jump into an online RPG, this would certainly be the one I’d pick.

I’m also glad to see that they didn’t abandon Final Fantasy VIII, despite losing the source code. They’ve done this with Kingdom Hearts before, where they have to remake everything from the ground up. I have to get back to Final Fantasy IX first, but I’m hoping to make my way through more of the games in the series in the future.

Speaking of, we gotta just go ahead and give it up for the opener here.

My highlight: Final Fantasy VII Remake

I’ve only played about twenty minutes or so of the original Final Fantasy VII, so I’m not as wary about the seemingly massive differences that Square Enix is proposing as some others. It mostly makes me curious. I feel like, seeing as I don’t have much emotional attachment to the original, I’m going to delight in looking up the differences after playing the first installment. Not that the some of the people attached to it aren’t going to do that too.

Despite the development hiccups, Final Fantasy VII R looks like it’s really turning into something special. The combat looks like what was originally planned for Versus XIII with a nice mix of Kingdom Hearts-style action and some Final Fantasy-style tactics. Even though there’s like thirty other games to play on the way, I’m already impatient for March.


Yeah, Nintendo won E3.

I’ve expressed on the podcast before that I don’t think the Switch has enough going for it. With a few exceptions, I’d rather play games on my PS4. Celeste is the only game I’ve bought for it that I really thought would be best on the Switch. I wasn’t particularly interested in the original Breath of the Wild or Super Mario Odyssey. Mostly, I like having a second system because it means I can have two big games going on at once without having to switch out a disc. I bought the upcoming Bloodstained for Switch, for example, because I’m already going to be playing Judgement and the last bits of God of War on the PS4.

Now, finally, I feel like the Switch is justifying its existence as a separate system, game-wise. There are, of course, the new Pokemon games and the new Animal Crossing game, both Nintendo properties that I’m honestly interested in. And the true genuine surprise of E3, the sequel to Breath of the Wild, is catching my interest a lot more than I’d expect it to. Especially if you can be Zelda.

But it’s not even just the Nintendo mainstays. There’s also the expanded version of Dragon Quest XI coming soon. Daemon x Machina looks like it’ll be something different, even if it’s not perfect. And I’m hotly anticipating Astral Chain. That’s so my jam. And also…

My highlight: Fire Emblem: Three Houses

Okay, I’m not sure if this is the true highlight, but Fire Emblem is the thing I’m most immediately excited for, and this trailer just cemented that. They’ve finally found something fun to do with time again after their compelling time travel story of Awakening and their nonsense soap opera baby growing pits of Fates. The five year time skip opens up some fascinating narrative potential and also has completely sold me on all three House leaders, meaning that I’m probably going to be playing this game several times and breaking my heart even more on each playthrough.

I’m hoping for a Support system that focuses on relationships rather than just romances- it’d be nice to have some male/female friendships and more same sex conversation options again. It’d also be nice to have some same sex romance options, on that note. But eliminating the children units and having some form of Supports is a good start.

Gimme it, Nintendo

And that about wraps it up! Needless to say, there are way too many exciting games coming out that I will have absolutely no time to play once I find a job. I’m gonna have to, like, make myself a schedule.

Let us know what you’re looking forward to in the comments or on social media! And don’t forget to subscribe to our main podcast on the podcasting platform of your choice. As soon as these new games come out, they might be getting put in the hat.

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