When the spotlight is on the hottest games of the year and you’re up against the ropes as publishers and manufacturers jump on stage to deliver carefully choreographed one-two punches, it can be harder to listen to what isn’t said as much as what is. With announcement after announcement sending fans into hysterics, keeping an eye on the games that are suspiciously absent from gaming’s greatest week can be pretty revealing—and disappointing.
With heavy-hitters like Fallout 4 stealing the show, it can be easy to miss when an announced title has quietly bowed out of the ring, perhaps saving their strength for a later day. But whatever the reason may be, here is an overview of some of the more anticipated titles that ducked out of the E3 frenzy.
‘DEAD ISLAND 2’
Where Dead Island’s announcement trailer was a harrowing glimpse into the final moments of a young girl’s life, Dead Island 2 decided to debut with a trailer that was a little more reflective of the game’s actual tone. That’s okay, because both trailers are awesome for different reasons.
When E3 passed us by without this particular rancid whiff of rotting flesh, we were left asking where Dead Island 2 had run off to. After allowing people to go hands-on at Gamescom 2014, this zombie brawler went MIA with the announcement that the game had been delayed until 2016. Hopefully we get a chance to taste more of its California apocalypse in the coming months.
Quantum Break was first teased at the Xbox One reveal event back in May 2013, but since then this ambitious third-person action game continues to tantalize with its visuals and premise involving time manipulation. The team at Remedy Entertainment even brought on a scientist from CERN to help ensure the story was as scientifically accurate as possible.
But Quantum Break, despite how exciting it may be, got the shaft at Microsoft’s press conference this year because there was too much to show and too little time. Don’t worry though, we’re expecting to get another glimpse of the action this August at Gamescom 2015.
When talking about open world games, you might be drawn to think of genre staples like Grand Theft Auto. But few could have expected Microsoft to announce the revival of Crackdown, an action game somewhere between Tron and Judge Dredd during their E3 conference last year. To call this reboot ambitious feels like an understatement, as Microsoft has teamed up with Cloudgine, a software development company that specializes in harnessing the power of cloud computing, to create a game that mimics the sheer level of destruction represented in its trailer.
While Crackdown was apparently too cool for the E3 crowd this year, it is slated to appear at Gamescom alongside Quantum Break. All we know is that if this is the future of law enforcement, god save us all.
'THE LEGEND OF ZELDA’
Nintendo’s digital showcase during this year’s E3 was, to put it mildly, kind of depressing. Audiences watched with eager anticipation, hoping that the big N would reach into its top hat and pull out a game that would give us all a reason to keep the Wii U out on the shelf this holiday season. But, as the conference ended with only a few games to really talk about, the absence of The Legend of Zelda was more painful than ever.
With Zelda being delayed into 2016, Nintendo decided to skip demoing their return to Hyrule at this year’s conference in favor of dedicating that time and energy back into the project. But without an adequate showstopper, Nintendo left a triforce-sized hole in the digital event. The best thing fans can hope for now is to wait out the chilly winter months in hopes that Nintendo comes back swinging in 2016.
If you haven’t had the chance to experience any of the Persona games, you’re missing out on one of the greatest series to step outside of Japan in almost two decades. When Persona 5 was teased last year, fans went crazy at the prospect of reliving their high school romances in the wonderfully stylized Playstation exclusive.
But E3 is now behind us, and despite Atlas’ assurances us that we can expect Persona 5 in 2015, we can’t help looking at the calendar and wondering. With a few conferences left in the season, hopefully the curtain rises on Japan’s most stylin’ series soon.
Blizzard has always felt like a company that marches to the beat of its own drum, so it wasn’t surprising when Overwatch used Heroes of the Storm and Starcraft 2: Legacy of the Void as meatshields to stop the E3 bullet.
But if ever there was a game more capable of bringing the best of Blizzard to the console (ignoring the excellent Diablo 3 of course), Overwatch is it. Even with the steady stream of information and the news of an impending beta this fall, we’re all a little sore that Blizzard’s take on a class-based shooter decided to play hooky last week.
If one game on this list is capable of becoming the next Last Guardian, Rime is the strongest candidate. Announced way back in 2013, when the world was young and full of hope, Rime stunned audiences with its sweeping musical score and breathtaking visuals.
To be perfectly honest, we’re not sure exactly what Rime is, and, at this point, we don’t really care. We just know it looks awesome. It is a little disconcerting how quiet developer Tequila Works has been since they rocked the boat at Gamescom two years ago, however. Are they keeping their heads down to focus on actually building the game instead of hyping it up? We can only hope.
E3 can sometimes feel like being the parents in Home Alone: you don’t realize one of the kids is missing until the frenzy is over. Being spellbound by E3 is easy, but it can be disappointing when your most anticipated game fails to show for the big event. At least there always next year.
Steven Messner is a freelance writer with a zealous passion for good beer and good video games. He also enjoys taco night, games about space, and forgetting to take out the garbage. You can find his work at GamesRadar, Rock, Paper, Shotgun, and Paste Magazine. Alternatively, you could just add him on Twitter @stevenmessner and say hello. He likes that.