While this year’s E3 has been packed with announcements of new games and news of release dates for games long in development (looking at you Cuphead), there have been many notable absences.
I’ve collected together the games we expected to see and what explanations, if available, developers have given for their absence.
The Last Of Us: Part 2
Announced last December at the PlayStation Experience event, there was a chance the game would get a deeper look-in than the brief teaser video that has all we’ve had to go on so far.
According to the game’s creative director, Neil Druckman, the reason it was absent from Sony’s E3 conference was that Naughty Dog didn’t want to detract from the upcoming Uncharted expansion:
Believe me, we're super excited to show you more of Ellie and Joel's 2nd journey, but right now it's Chloe and Nadine's time to shine.
— Neil Druckmann (@Neil_Druckmann) June 13, 2017
Final Fantasy 7 Remake
Another game that could have been a highlight of Sony’s E3 conference was the Final Fantasy 7 remake. Announced back during Sony’s E3 show back in 2015, the news of a remake was the answer to something fans had been asking for for years. Since that announcement, however, we’ve seen precious little of the project. In December 2015, there was a cinematic trailer released:
But that’s about it.
One possible reason for its absence is that the project is no longer being developed externally and was recently brought in-house. This would indicate that the game is not in a state Square Enix is happy with and so is not willing to show.
Animal Crossing Switch
A lot of people expected that Nintendo’s Direct would bring the announcement of an Animal Crossing game for the Switch. There hasn’t been any news to indicate that Nintendo is working on this but that won’t put out the fires of hope. Still, at least we know there’s a new Metroid Prime, Kirby, Yoshi, and full-blooded Pokémon RPG in the works.
Long before we knew what exactly the Nintendo Switch was we knew that Nintendo was working on a fourth Pikmin game. While it’s not yet been shown off, Eurogamer confirmed with Shigeru Miyamoto that the game is still in development. That was about all he was allowed to say, though.
I've been told not to share anything about this from PR, but I can tell you it is progressing," said Miyamoto.
Media Molecule’s bizarre and beautiful sandbox for creating and sharing games and art was conspicuously missing this year. The game has been at the last two Sony E3 conferences and seemed to be progressing towards launch nicely, with extensive videos of the game being played published to the developer’s Youtube channel.
According to Media Molecule’s Twitter there will be news about the game released later this year:
— Media Molecule (@mediamolecule) June 13, 2017
First announced at E3 back in 2013 during Microsoft’s conference, Below has been sporadically appearing at shows for four years now with no sign of release. This year it was completely missing. What’s happened?
Developer Capybara is working on something else and has had to put Below on hold indefinitely. In March, the studio revealed that it was working on OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes for Cartoon Network. Unfortunately, the studio can’t work on two projects at once, after OK K.O. is released later this year we might see the studio return to its top-down Souls-like.
Another game announced on Sony’s stage in 2015 was the long-awaited Shenmue sequel. The kickstarter launched mid-show and within 24 hours it had been fully-funded. That was two years ago and, besides some behind-the-scenes videos and screenshots on its Kickstarter page, there hasn’t been a proper look at the game yet.
While E3 might have been a good opportunity to show something of the game, just ahead of the conferences creative director Yu Suzuki announced that the game had been delayed into the second half of 2018. Suggesting its not in a state the team is happy to show off.
While Michel Ancel made a lot of people happy by finally showing off Beyond Good & Evil 2 — a game I’m thrilled not to have to include on this list — his other project, Wild, was nowhere to be seen. I spoke with Ancel earlier this year about splitting his time between two projects, which sees him spending the morning at one studio and his afternoons in the other, so we knew it hadn’t been cancelled but he reiterated that on his Ancel’s Instagram account:
He also said that we can “expect big updates in the coming year.”
Hideo Kojima’s big new project for Sony has been grabbing us by the eyeballs at every opportunity. Its first trailer was shown at Sony’s E3 conference in 2016 and then a second was shown in December at The Video Game Awards.
While Kojima himself was out at E3, appearing for an interview with Geoff Keighley, his game wasn’t on show. The big man himself announced this a few days ahead of the conference. Rather than just a quick tweet to say it wouldn’t be there, he couldn’t help but drop a cryptic tease:
— HIDEO_KOJIMA (@HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN) June 7, 2017
Red Dead Redemption 2
Yeah, Rockstar doesn’t really do anything to other people’s schedules. Since it was announced last October the studio has kept largely silent on its much-anticipated game. The first news we’ve had of it since it received its first trailer was the news that it would be delayed into 2018.
There were at least some new screenshots of the game released with the news of the delay.
Rockstar has been so quiet about Red Dead Redemption 2 that another developer managed to build up a tonne of buzz about its multiplayer shooter because people confused the two games.
After it was announced at the Video Game Awards last December, E3 could have been a good time for Gearbox to show off Borderlands 3 for the first time but it wasn’t to be the case.
Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford said on Twitter that the team was “working very hard at it” but wouldn’t say when it would be on show:
We are working very hard at it. It's all I think about!
— Randy Pitchford (@DuvalMagic) June 12, 2017
CD Projekt RED’s next big game was first revealed back in 2014 but the studio has never shown it in action. With the last of the Witcher 3’s two big expansions released, now would be a perfect time for the studio to start showing off what it’s been working on. E3 2017 wasn’t to be it, however.
The last CD Projekt had to say about its Cyberpunk game was after a very cyberpunk thing happened to the studio: a hacker stole design documents for the game and tried to hold the studio to ransom, threatening to release the documents if the team didn’t pay up. CD Projeckt didn’t bow to pressure, instead saying:
— CD PROJEKT RED (@CDPROJEKTRED) June 8, 2017
FromSoftware’s Unannounced Project
It’s no secret that FromSoftware is working on a new project. There have been little details about ‘it’ ever since the release of Dark Souls 3. For instance, in a Glixel interview, Ty Franck, co-author of the Expanse books, said that he had done some work with FromSoftware on a new game. And, in an interview with IGN back in December, studio head Hidetaka Miyazaki said the studio was working on three games, one of which was Armoured Core.
There are plenty of opportunities over the coming year to hear about these games — Gamescom, the Tokyo Games Show, Paris Games Week, and The Video Game Awards, to name a few — so I’ve my finger’s crossed we’ll be able to cross a few games off this list in the coming months.