So E3 has arrived! If you weren’t sure if it had arrived yet, well, you can check out the first feature I wrote on the subject last week, as well as our expectations roundtable. But this week, we’ve got a ton of conferences being thrown at us. Seriously, a ton. I remember when there used to be about five of them. Now we have at least 15. In the span of about four days. Yesterday, we got the Ubisoft Forward conference and, being the Ubisoft stan that I am, I figured I would write up a VGU Reacts on the subject. I’m gonna do things a little differently today, though. I’m taking you back to my blogging days, and I’m going to live blog as I watch the conference. Holding nothing back. All opinions, unfiltered, as we go along. So, if you’re as excited as I am, let’s get into it!
Before we begin, I can’t help but think of the things I’m hoping to see. I would love a new Assassin’s Creed announcement (at least a hint at the future), some Far Cry 6 gameplay, and a release date for Riders Republic. Also, I’ve got 2 bets going on with our own Josh Miller: we will see Beyond Good & Evil 2 gameplay, and a re-reveal of Skull & Bones. Fingers crossed I’m making 10 bucks today!
Lights up, and God, I miss Aisha Tyler. Hell, I miss everything about E3! I miss the crowds and the live reactions, and I hate the forced acting between hosts of these digital showcases. Cringe. Anyway, bring on the Splinter Cell! Hopefully.
They mentioned Rainbow Six news. I forgot they leaked a new name for Quarantine – Rainbow Six Extraction. It sounds alright. I’m excited to see it in action and how it differs from Siege. Also remembering how we won’t be seeing any Prince of Persia in this show. That game is never coming out.
So, Rainbow Six Extraction is about an alien parasite, not a global pandemic. That is a refreshing change of pace. I guess The Division did have that dystopia covered, though. I also gotta say, it’s nice to have a cinematic for once. I’ve had too many developer interviews these past couple of days. Let’s get to the old-fashioned pre-rendered trailers, huh?!
So, the cinematic is just that, no gameplay here. But it is doing a good job of getting the idea out there. A team of three goes in to extract a captured comrade. There is lots of sonar-oriented weaponry, and cool finishing moves. I hope those factor into the gameplay, alongside the dynamic cover they’re using. I doubt they have no gameplay, though. This game has to be coming out this year, right?
Now they’re using RC drones and electrical traps and mentioning a race against the clock. I’m picturing Siege’s terrorist hunt mode… but with aliens. Also, this trailer looks gorgeous, I must say. Now there’s an “Apex” blocking the exit, who seems to act as a stronger mini-boss of sorts. They quickly take care of him and, well, reach the Extraction.
Rainbow Six Extraction is coming on September 16 and it’s dubbed “A Ubisoft Original.” That’s new. On all platforms but Switch. Even Stadia. Remember him?
Oh boy, now there’s a dev interview. Yawn. Let’s see… 1-3 player co-op, using “your favorite Rainbow Six operators.” This sounds like Siege’s Undead Nightmare if that makes any sense. Gadgets and weaponry will feel familiar, with new unlockable equipment to fight this new alien threat. Also, if you die, you go MIA, and your teammates have to rescue you before you can return to the game. That’s pretty rad.
The game takes place in three areas: New York, San Francisco, and Alaska. You know, America’s three biggest hotspots! The aliens seem to be called Arcanes, and have various mutated forms, with some that explode and some that shoot spikes, to name a few. Now we’re gonna take a look at gameplay for the first time!
Well shit, it’s dark and terrifying! Gameplay looks like Siege on an Overwatch map. Operators work together, using their unique skills to survey the landscape and plan their attacks carefully. Aliens are actually called Archæan, and they look just as scary as the trailer made them out to be. In this gameplay, we’re meeting grunts, who are basic alien beings, and the Sprawl, which covers the ground, spreading like thick black mud. Sprawl must be shot or else it can alert other archæan, as well as slow down your movement. I love this mechanic already.
Your squad’s React Light can detect bio-organic matter, allowing you to see enemies in the dark and even through surfaces (which can be destroyed)! What I’m getting from this gameplay is that Extraction is set up much like Left 4 Dead. Saferoom areas allow for restocking before moving on to more difficult areas. Alien types get stronger and more terrifying, and the addition of Siege’s gameplay mechanics and operator skills supplies the game with a fresh take on the cooperative horde shooter genre. This feels like a mod for Siege in the best way. Couple this all with the gorgeous visuals of the environment – from lighting and shadow effects to the creepy glow of the Sprawl – and I am all in for this game.
My only concern is if the aliens can break through the- oh my god, they can break through the walls. Welp… fuck. Luckily, once the team beats the level’s mini boss, you can choose to exfil and bring all your stuff home. Or you can push on to the hardest section and try for better loot. Feels like that horde mode The Division 2 got that I’ve yet to try. I like this style of play. Now there’s an enemy type that looks like the Demogorgon, and he can make aliens invisible… in the dark. God help us. This tier 4 archæan is the big boss, and he quickly takes down an operator. They are subsequently covered in stasis foam and reported MIA. Sadly, that’s where the demo ends. You know, suspense or whatever. But one thing’s for sure, I am sold on Rainbow Six Extraction, and I’m eagerly awaiting September 16 now.
Holy. Holy shit. No. They are not bringing back Rocksmith. Guys I was just thinking about Rocksmith yesterday!! What the fuckkkk it’s been seven years!!!
Rocksmith+ is taking learning guitar to the next level. Think of it as a social media platform for guitar players, with community forums and videos, on top of a whole game to teach you how to play guitar. It looks badass, and I am genuinely gonna play it. I will finally learn guitar with this. The cord never worked for me in 2014, but this time? Let’s do it. You can sign up for the PC beta right now, as well. I am psyched!
Some updates: Rocksmith+ is a subscription service. Small price to pay for what looks to be a pretty extensive service! Your phone can be a microphone, meaning you don’t necessarily need a cord to play. You can learn bass or guitar – electric or acoustic – with no dongles required. At launch, there will be a huge library of songs, complete with chord charts and note arrangements, with more songs coming weekly. The Rocksmith Workshop lets you experiment with your own improvisation with licensed tracks. Rocksmith+ will include new ways to track your progress, and new modes to hone your skills. There will even be a tablature view, so advanced players can enjoy tabs of songs.
This is so meaty and so helpful. The songs are across all genres, popularities, and regions across the globe. I even saw Assassin’s Creed music go by! What?? Rocksmith+, as I mentioned, has closed beta signup available right now, and you can go here to do so. Still no price details, but I’m sure it will be worth it. Fingers crossed!
Yassss Riders Republic! This game had a release date before we even saw gameplay, and then it was sadly delayed. But now I’m ready to see it in action! If you don’t know, it’s basically Steep but on mountain roads with dirt bikes and wingsuits and crazy dangerous stunts. Damn, seeing this new trailer, they’ve got BMX bikes, planes, snowmobiles, jet packs?! Insanity!
Oh shit, we’ve got gameplay! There’s a community track editor and even a 6v6 team competitive mode. Tricks Battle works just like Splatoon, but with tricks like grinding and backflips instead of… paint. You can even snowboard in Riders Republic, apparently. There is something for everyone here! And it looks beautiful!
Truly this game looks fantastic. The whole career mode is based on gaining stars, which can be done by entering events, doing tricks, and finding landmarks. Not sure if there will be little story side quests like Steep had, but here’s hoping! It looks like you could never get tired of this game, and hopefully, it finds a good multiplayer scene to keep it going for some time. There are at least 64 people allowed in one event, which makes for the race of a lifetime. Mix that craziness with some fine-tuned gameplay systems that make pulling tricks feel extra tight, and Riders Republic looks like a total win!
Thank God, it comes out September 2! September cannot come fast enough! And you can sign up for beta testing now! See you out there, riders!
I can’t believe it’s only Year 6 of Rainbow Six Siege. Feels like forever ago they promised a 10-year timeline and hey, they’re making the most of it! Now it’s time for some announcements, but frankly, it doesn’t affect me. Haven’t touched Siege in a long time. Cross-play is coming on June 30 for Luna, Stadia, and PC. In 2022, PlayStation players will be able to finally play with Xbox! Finally, Thunderbird is a new operator coming to Siege soon, and she got a pretty trailer.
Now, on to live games. I hate the term “live games.” I get it, but… ew.
Anyway, For Honor is getting the Mirage DLC, which seems to add… supernatural samurai? Okay.
Trackmania is getting some new map-editor features, including physics changes like bouncing on water and diving. Who knew that was still a game receiving updates?
Brawlhalla is getting all four Ninja Turtles added to the roster. I always forget that’s a Ubisoft-published game. Pretty crazy.
The Crew 2 is getting some new cars. Someday I will get to that game. I loved the first one.
Watch Dogs Legion will soon receive the Bloodline DLC, which not only marks Aiden Pearce’s return to Watch Dogs but also WRENCH! WHAT!!! Our boys are back!!!!
Lastly, Ghost Recon Breakpoint continues to pretend it’s a game people play. This year marks the 20th anniversary of Ghost Recon, and Ubisoft is promising news but… they left us hanging. Thanks, guys.
It’s Just Dance time!!! It’s not an E3 without a new Just Dance. Naturally, Just Dance 2022 is going to be even bigger, and who better to bring the noise than Todrick Hall, the modern queen of fierce! Todrick’s got an exclusive version of his song “Nails, Hair, Hips, Heels” coming to the game. I actually just heard this song on America’s Got Talent the other day and thought it was by RuPaul. Shows how up-to-date I am on the culture! You can go to justdancegame.com if you wanna get in on the new music video for his song, and as for Just Dance 2022? Well, it’ll be out on November 4 for every console but the Wii, and it even includes Imagine Dragons this time around. I should probably warn you, though, I do not recommend streaming a rhythm game like this on Stadia. Moving on!
I have yet to play Assassins Creed Valhalla, which is just disgusting considering I am the residential AC stan here at VGU. But if you’re hungry for more Valhalla content, you’re in luck. Seeing as this was the biggest Assassin’s Creed launch to date, Ubisoft has a lot in store for the game. Updates seem to be happening regularly, with new limited-time events, gameplay tweaks, and even one-handed weapons coming shortly. A new expansion just released, Wrath of the Druids, and I’ve heard good things. The Siege of Paris is coming this summer, covering the “most ambitious Viking raid ever.” Also, a Discovery Tour is finally coming to Valhalla which, of course, allows for a leisurely stroll through the world, learning – not fighting. These are always so cool, and a unique way to learn about each game’s history.
Ubisoft says that for the first time, they’re supporting an Assassin’s Creed title for a second year, and there’s even more planned for next year. God, I hope Eivor is a good protagonist, or this could suck. The good thing is, we know there are already some teams working on the next title… somewhere.
Oh no. Now it’s time for “movies and tv” content. Gonna take a nap.
Mythic Quest season 2 finale is coming on June 25. Never really cared for that show.
Now there’s a new clip and trailer for Werewolves Within, which actually looks awesome. It’s Knives Out with werewolves! What could be bad about that? It comes to theaters June 25 and on demand July 2.
Now they’re talking about Far Cry’s memorable villains? Why does this sound familiar…? Oh yeah, because it leaked already!
But first, is this Far Cry 6 gameplay? Or just a cutscene? Ohhh it’s the introduction of Giancarlo Esposito’s character, Anton Castillo! Not only is this spoiling some fun, but it also honestly looks crummy. The visuals of this game look really muddy and bland. I don’t like the facial animations if I’m honest. Feels like Far Cry’s worst work in years, in terms of graphics. But I digress. Esposito is giving another incredible performance! He can go from believable British to believable Spanish at the drop of a hat! He’s a tremendous actor and his talents are well-suited for the Far Cry universe.
Next, we’re getting a glimpse at the aforementioned leak. Included in the Far Cry 6 season pass seems to be three different expansion packs. These explore alternate realities of Far Cry 3-5, with players taking control of their respective big baddies: Vaas, Pagan Min, and Joseph Seed. You will relive each game from the other side, and while it’s not the COD–Zombies-starring-Far–Cry-villains experience I hoped for, it sounds cool as hell. Also in the season pass, Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon? Is it a remaster? Who’s to say? Far Cry 6 comes out on October 7, and I am so ready.
Next up, a new game in the Mario+Rabbids franchise: Sparks of Hope. This Nintendo crossover sequel takes Mario and the Rabbids to space alongside Sparks – the cross between Rabbids and Lumas – and friendly faces like Rabbids Rosalina. I know nothing about this franchise except that people thoroughly enjoy it. I love Super Mario Galaxy, so I am prepared for anything. I will say, it looks adorable and fun as hell. Sparks of Hope is coming in 2022.
Now it’s over to Yves Guillemot, and I swear, I better not lose this bet completely. Give me something big at the end here. Please!!
Well, this isn’t gonna be Pirates or BG&E, so fuck me, I guess. But we love you anyway, Yves! Keep on keeping on!
So, what’s this? Snowdrop engine, jungle setting? Is it going to be that Division 2 collab game I’ve read about? He did mention a partnership. Watch it be Assassin’s Creed x Fire Emblem or something dreadful.
Oh dear god it’s Avatar why.
I guess it looks pretty but I’m like already annoyed. Nobody asked for this. This didn’t need to happen. Nobody even wants the sequels anymore! This game will come out before Avatar 2 does, watch. And is the story just going to be the movie again? Come to think of it, is that all the sequels will be, too? Just rehashing the whole “humans want the life tree” thing? Ugh I hate Avatar, what a big old disappointment.
If you want another reason to be disgusted with Avatar, here’s an excellent video on its lackluster music and how it botched an entire made-up history. Avatar is just such a groan-inducing IP, I cannot imagine wanting to take on a project like this. But hey, Disney money is the best money, I hear.
Welp, aside from Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora, I wouldn’t say this Ubisoft Forward was entirely a bust! It was a good time with some long-awaited release dates and some great gameplay footage. I look forward to the next showcases in the coming days, and you can find all the coverage you need right here at VGU. Thanks for reading!
I told you it was an easy 10 bucks, Josh.