One of gaming’s biggest conferences happened last week, and you might have missed it.
Gamescom is Europe’s best-attended gaming event, drawing 350,000 attendees to Cologne, Germany. It also was the site of plenty of news, much of it building on the biggest announcements of E3 with a steady stream of new trailers and info.
While not all the big companies had a slew of announcements at Gamescom, here’s a quick recap of everything worth seeing.
Microsoft is really trying to redirect the ship that is the Xbox One, aiming more for video games after some TV-focused missteps in recent years. At Gamescom, the company came prepared, packing tons of trailers for Xbox One’s biggest upcoming titles.
We’ve been hearing about Quantum Break, some sort of shooter-TV show hybrid, since the Xbox One was first announced, but now we finally have some idea of what it is, and maybe just as importantly, who’s in it.
Xbox’s Crackdown games are all about gaining insane powers to blow up criminals, mixing things like leaping over buildings with sniping gangsters and doing some crazy driving. In Crackdown 3, Microsoft reveals you’ll be able to blow up just about everything in the game’s multiplayer mode.
Halo Wars 2
The original Halo Wars was a lesser-known Halo title. Instead of being a straight shooter, it was a strategy game in which players command forces and move them around a battlefield. Six years later, Halo Wars 2 takes the franchise to Xbox One and Windows 10.
Rise of the Tomb Raider
Lara Croft is back in a lengthy demo out of Gamescom, much of which was focused on gameplay and murdering apparently bad dudes.
Dark Souls III
For those of us who didn’t get a hands-on look at Dark Souls III in Napa Valley, there was the Gamescom reveal trailer, which suggests the super-hard action series’ next installment will be just as intense as the last two.
Final Fantasy XV
There already are a couple of demos floating around for Final Fantasy XV that give a sense of its all-dude roadtrip gameplay. The trailer out of Gamescom for Square Enix’s upcoming role-playing game is all about filling in background for the story.
We’ve only been hearing rumors about a new Mafia game to follow up 2011’s. Mafia 2 was set in the 1940s and ’50s—so far we know that Mafia III will take place during the period of the Vietnam War.
You get to ride freakin’ dragons in Scalebound, but while we saw the game announced last year, we haven’t seen any real gameplay. Luckily, there’s Gamescom and this new trailer to show us what having a dragon pal will be like.
Ark: Survival Evolved
Ark is a survival game like DayZ or Rust, but with dinosaurs. It made an unexpectedly big splash on PC, so now the title is headed to Xbox One as well.
At E3, Microsoft announced that upcoming content for spaceship-flying title Elite: Dangerous would make it to Xbox One before any other platform. At Gamescom, we got our first look at what to expect from the new “CQC Mode”.
We Happy Few
A first-person survival game set in a drug-addled England, We Happy Few has been looking disturbing and awesome for quite some time now among the PC player community. This latest trailer shows off what Xbox players can expect.
From the creators of Borderlands comes Battleborn, another entry into that burgeoning genre of character-based multiplayer first-person shooters, similar to what Blizzard’s cooking up with Overwatch. This new trailer gives a much better sense of Battleborn’s gameplay than the trailer we saw at E3, and comes with a release date: Feb. 9, 2016.
Publisher EA is packing some huge titles this year, including the return of Star Wars: Battlefront and Mirror’s Edge. It spent its Gamescom presser showing off more features for its biggest games.
Star Wars: Battlefront
In addition to blasting away at stormtroopers and getting stalked and choked to death by Darth Vader in Star Wars: Battlefront, you’ll also be able to hop in an X-Wing or a TIE fighter for some aerial dogfighting mayhem. Ship-to-ship combat was the focus of EA’s Battlefront briefing in Germany.
Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst
Finally, we get a lengthy look at the first-person parkour gameplay of Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst. EA dropped a story heavy teaser trailer on us at E3 2015 to get everybody excited, but at Gamescom, we got to see the game in action in a demo that looks very, very promising.
One of the standouts of E3 was Unravel, a game in which players control a little guy made out of yarn called Yarny. EA and developer Coldwood Interactive showed more of what the game will actually be like at Gamescom, with an extended demo of an early level.
A bunch of new details popped up about EA’s futbol franchise, including a new “draft” mode, new career mode features, and weather effects that can impact the game.
The Sims 4
There’s a new expansion called “Get Together” coming to life simulator The Sims 4, which adds a whole new area called Windenburg.
The creator of World of Warcraft and StarCraft has its own conference just about every year in the fall, dubbed BlizzCon, but Blizzard still showed up in Cologne with some new stuff and one particularly big announcement.
World of Warcraft: Legion
There’s always a new expansion in the works, and this year the announcement is for World of Warcraft: Legion. It’s all about fighting demons as they try to take over the world, and players will be excited to hear about stuff like new dungeons, raids and player-vs.-player systems.
OTHER COOL STUFF
Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate
Publisher Ubisoft also didn’t have a press conference at Gamescom, but it did drop a new story trailer for Victorian London-based Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate that focuses on its twin protagonists, Jacob and Evie.
A role-playing game set on a post-apocalyptic Mars—which seems like an unnecessary distinction, but whatever—The Technomancer has players battling enemies with both melee attacks and, apparently, lightning abilities.