The world's largest gaming convention kicks off tomorrow in Cologne.
Amongst the announcements and demos expected are Mafia 3, Dark Souls III, Xbox exclusives Scalebound, Crackdown, and Quantum Break, and a new expansion to World of Warcraft.
Gameplanet editor Matt Maguire will be filing stories from the show floor, but for those of us back home, the major press conferences and reveals are taking place at these times:
Mafia 3: August 4, 10:00pm AEST / Aug 5, 12:00am NZ (Mafia YouTube)
Microsoft: August 5, 12:00am AEST / 2:00am NZ (Xbox Twitch channel)
EA: August 5, 6:00pm AEST / 8:00pm NZ (EA Twitch channel)
Microsoft Daily: August 6 + 7, 2:00am AEST / 4:00am NZ (Xbox Twitch channel)
Call of Duty: August 6, 3:00am AEST / 5:00am NZ (COD Twitch channel)
Blizzard: August 7, 2:00am AEST / 4:00am NZ (Blizzard Twitch channel)
Though not confirmed by all, conferences are expected to be streamed live on their respective companies' Twitch and/or YouTube channels.
Software developer Autodesk has launched Stingray, a new game engine based on the Bitsquid engine it bought last year.
The company aims to snag small to medium sized studios with Stingray's blend of drag-and-drop, node-based scripting, high-quality particle and visual effects options, and smooth workflow with 3D apps.
Stingray supports VR, physical shading, depth-of-field, lens blur, and motion blur, as well as systems like PhysX and Autodesk's own Scaleform.
Mega Man spiritual successor Mighty No. 9 will not release in 2015 as planned, according to multiple retailer listings.
Originally slated for April 2015, then delayed to September, the massively-crowdfunded action platformer has been delayed again, with retailers Amazon, Best Buy, and GameStop listing release placeholders of 2016.
The delay is yet another embarrassment for developer Comcept, whose Kickstarter for Red Ash – the spiritual successor to Mega Man Legends – failed to reach its crowdfunding target today.
Angry Birds 2 has been downloaded over 10 million times in its first five days of release, says developer Rovio.
Even more impressively, one million of those downloads took place within twelve hours.
Rovio did not mention how many of its players have spent real-world money on the game's intrusive free-to-play features.
The PC release date of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain has been moved up from September 15 to September 1.
This change brings the PC version to release-date parity with consoles – increasingly rare nowadays.
“We initially did not think it would be possible to get such an epic game out onto PC in time for launch alongside its console counterparts, but all involved have worked diligently to meet the demands of our PC consumers,” said Konami president Tomotada Tashiro.
Gears of War: Ultimate Edition will include the entire Xbox 360 Gears series, running on Xbox One via backwards compatibility.
The offer will give players access to the 360 versions of Gears 1-3 and Judgment on Xbox Live, and will be redeemable between August 25 and December 31.
Though the Ultimate Edition of the original game is a remastered version, the classic games are not.
Doom's SnapMap feature will be the closest it gets to mod support, says Bethesda's Pete Hines.
The level editor was announced at E3 2015, and offers players in-game tools to create their own maps and game modes.
Hines explained to GameTrailers: "If you just pull any 12 year old and sit them in front of Minecraft, if they don’t know what they’re doing they could still make something: they can make a smiley face or build themselves a house. But if you put it in the hands of someone who knows what they’re doing, they can recreate Zelda in Minecraft."
Augmented reality will be "the biggest technological revolution that happens in our lifetimes," says Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney.
In a speech at the ChinaJoy trade show, Sweeney expressed aggressive optimism about the technology, suggesting that it could well eliminate the need for dedicated "screens" entirely.
"Once you have an augmented reality display, you don’t need any other form of display. Your smart phone does not need a screen. You don’t need a tablet. You don’t need a TV. You just take the screen with you on your glasses wherever you go,” enthused Sweeney.
“Walking in front of this mélange are the worst-looking player-created characters in recent memory. The prodigy golfer I spent 15 minutes hand-crafting to the best of my ability looks (unintentionally) like a creepy psychopath...”
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