E3 is in full swing, and what with the volume
of games – the ear-splitting volume of the
press conferences – it’s easy for games
to slip through the cracks.
Stepping away from the din of the main publisher
conferences I’ve gone looking for the hidden
gems you might have missed.
Please add your own suggestions in the comments
as we go along – I’m sure there’s loads
more waiting to be found.
If you came away from Jaws thinking ‘Hey!
I’d like to be the Great White Shark ruining
vacations and the ocean in general,’ then
Maneater is definitely for you.
Because that is precisely what you’ll be
The fish power fantasy doesn’t stop at terrorising
folks — the game is an open-world action
‘SHARK-PG’ in the words of Tripwire president
John Gibson, which means you won’t just
be swimming around and eating people.
No sir, this game involves upgrades and skill
trees to sharpen and grow those fifteen rows
of teeth in each jaw and jump higher from
the water to grab unsuspecting victims from
shorelines and piers.
And considering a Great White can jump an
average of 8-10 feet out of the water as standard…
There’s going to be a full single-player
campaign to chomp on – I’m picturing Ecco
the Dolphin, but with more biting.
The bodycount will be a tad smaller in Ooblets.
It’s not hard to pinpoint just what makes
game so lovely; you seemingly spend most of
your time waltzing through a twee little town,
farming Ooblets (the game’s titular creatures)
from the ground like little vegetables, taking
care of them and making human friends along
There’s enough customisation that you can
whip up a different look for your character
for every day of the week ending in ‘Y’.
And in a delightful move the Pokemon-like
fights have been replaced with dance battles
because: there can never be too much of that.
This is shaping into Stardew Valley meets
Pokemon, with weird and wonderful visuals
borrowed from Katamari Damacy, and how’s
that for a combination and a half?
It’s easy to love a farming simulator — who
doesn’t want to go out into the sunshine
and grow a big ole turnip for the Zen?
It is such a simple simulation, so wholesome,
also… kind of everywhere.
But Morning Star is farming with a difference
as it has replaced standard, fruits of the
Earth farms with computer servers.
You’ll be planting, growing and tending
data Turnips rather than the real-deal in
this post-apocalyptic ‘cultivator,’ which
is supposedly taking a slightly more literal
interpretation of a server farm.
Rather than tend the soil, you are maintaining
the tech behind it (hardware, software and
such) utilising simple interactions typical
of the genre.
Outside of an almost empty server room beneath
all that simulated golden loveliness that
came before, we know that this post-apocalyptic
game will feature a community of sorts much
like, say, Stardew Valley or upcoming My Time
at Portia in a slant that is equally optimistic.
It is always intriguing to see a game genre
turned on its head…
Besides farming, cab driving is another recurring
theme of E3.
Okay, it only cropped up twice, but games
about taxis aren’t exactly the most common
thing so it feels like a trend.
In Neo Cab, a narrative adventure game, you
play the last human cab driver in a city of
Think I am Legend but with Teslas instead
The cars are all controlled by a corporation
called Capra that may or may not be hiding
something very bad.
I was going to make an Uber joke here, but
the lawyers said not to.
You won’t only be ferrying citizens of Los
Ojos from point A to Point B but aiming for
that full five star review, which should help
you get closer to your customers, and as a
result: The Truth (with capital T).
You can still kick people out though – uncovering
a dark conspiracy is important but you shouldn’t
have to pick up those drunk students if you
don’t want to.
Naturally you’ll have your phone on hand
for conversations, pick ups and check-ins
in this tech-utopia, which looks like it will
come in handy as it seems Lina Romero (the
driver) knows someone who could be in trouble.
It’s a cyberpunk, noir and a little Crazy
Taxi without the beats . I’m in.
I’m going to get the obvious out the way
here and say: Sable looks gorgeous.
I know, I know, beauty does not a good video
game make, but you can’t talk about this
game without appreciating the animation and
The two man team at Shedworks cite Japanese
animation as well as European comics as inspiration,
and it shows in an almost cell-shaded style
that is full of personality.
New footage debuted at E3 captures an intimate
feeling of isolation in this coming-of-age
tale set in an open-world, focussed more on
puzzle solving and exploration than bloodshed.
Saying that, there appear to be dungeons in
this alien desert that is cleared of most
signs of life besides the player-character,
Sable, roaming around on her hover bike…
and maybe the odd tree.
Remnants of the old still remain as well as
deserted camps and tech; the perfect place
I wouldn’t have thought that the words:
‘simulated pixels’ would ever fill me
with nerves, but then again I had not encountered
Noita before E3’s PC Gaming Show.
But what exactly does the term mean?
Well, to strip out the lingo, you can affect
every pixel in the world, meaning every bit
of a level can be exploded, burnt, melted
or a combination of the above.
Nolla Game’s custom engine allows levels
to go disastrously pear-shaped.
As you can see here, the game is all about
textural elements in a world where seemingly
everything is destructible.
I can just see it now: run after run of each
level, brimming with accidental destructo-splosions
that you have to think around.
There are also blood baths… no story there
I just thought it would bear mentioning.
It’s described as a roguelite game, a definition
that can be a little hazy because it can mean
so many things.
Permadeath, turn-based movement, resource
management; there’s no telling yet which
elements Noita will implement.
All we do know is that you’ll likely bring
down a whole world’s worth of pixels on
your head every few minutes.
It’s a glorious death.
Mods make PC gaming — from Half-Life’s
iconic Black Mesa makeover to the extended
Wedding scene from Dragon Age Origins… wait,
did I say that last one out loud?
The Forgotten City was a Skyrim mod that was
downloaded by over one million people and
the first to win a Writer’s Guild Award,
and is now a standalone re-imagined game.
A lovely mods-to-riches kind of story.
In this time travel murder mystery, you travel
deep underground to the titular city where
the corpses of several explorers now lie after
having mildly upset the local order.
The aim of the day is to change their fate
by piecing together the puzzle through a mystical
portal that leads you back into the past…
maybe we should make that ‘the aim of many
This sounds complicated.
The original mod lasted 6-8 hours in total
but with dozens of new additions such as visual
redesigns, sound, dialogue, puzzles, combat
and tweaks to the plot resulting in different
endings The Forgotten City should warrant
a repeat visit.
In this FPS open-world factory building sim,
you are a member of a program known as ‘Save
the Day’ — you have three guesses as to
what the aim of that is.
You explore a strange alien planet in a way
not too dissimilar to No Man’s Sky and must
traverse, plunder, and overcome, all with
the mind to build-build-build complex machinery.
If you’ve played the similar Factorio, your
mind is probably conjuring new machines as
Yes, as the word ‘satisfactory’ suggests
the game requires you to turn the lush, mineral
rich planet into an automated system of factories
that would make a Victorian cotton mill owner
From multi-levelled monsters to smaller machinations
linking to other machines, some are built
for crafting or loading, but most produce
materials by the hundreds on nice little uniform
I have a feeling this really is the perfect
game for those of you who are mesmerised by
pasta making machines on youtube.
Which is everyone, right?
There are moments in Stormland, an open-world
VR game from Insomniac Games, that might not
be ideal for those of us who suffer from motion
Let’s see, we have: flight (check), rock
climbing (check), an emphasis on exploration
with a free flowing camera (double-check)
— hello nausea my old friend.
But just one look at Stormland should be enough
to convince anyone to invest in some travel
For starters you play the game as an android
gardener, like Wall.E with pruning shears,
only you have been ripped from your homeworld
(and most of your limbs as it so happens)
by some big bad something.
Your character can be seen patching itself
up as well his robot friends, which would
be so lovely if the stakes weren’t so high
with all those laser bullets flying about
and drones looking to dump you on the scrap
That said, this game can clearly do both:
emotional storytelling and action!
This is the kind of experience and world VR
was made for, to immerse yourself in… now
where can I get some of those pills so I can
So, what happens when (at the end of days)
the man upstairs accidentally goofs and beams
up all the bad eggs rather than the good seeds.
Well, Rapture Rejects happens, which is a
battle royale game for all the folks left
to survive hell on Earth, which really begs
the question just how brutal can it get if
these people are supposed to be all nice and
The game developed by Galvanic Games is based
on the Cyanide and Happiness webcomic.
If you aren’t familiar with it, it is likely
that we can expect weird and wonderful, controversial,
and darkly humorous violence from this game.
In the tidal wave of battle royale games,
Rapture Rejects is a whiff of fresh air, with
its cartoony, isometric wackiness.
It makes a nice change of pace to hear the
words battle royale and not see an over the
shoulder camera or players running for the
I may actually last more than five minutes
in this one.
Thank you for tuning into our list of PC games
you may have missed from E3 — what do you
make of them all and/or what are you excited
for/what games would you like to share.
As always, thank you for watching and please
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We will see you soon!