The Bethesda E3 2019 lacked major new reveals and big surprises, but there was still plenty there to catch the attention of the legendary studio’s fans. Important updates to some of the studio’s biggest (and most controversial) games such as The Elder Scrolls Online and Fallout 76 were present and correct, while brand new IP like Ghostwire and Deathpool were also revealed. Check out all the Bethesda E3 2019 highlights (and lowlights) below:
Bethesda E3 2019 | Highlights and lowlights
Highlight: Ikumi Nakamura
The internet has fallen in love with Ikumi Nakamura, the developer who took to the stage in order to discuss Ghostwire: Tokyo. Energetic without being irritating, and passionate while remaining authentic, Nakamura represented the antithesis of what we’ve come to expect from these E3 presentations.
When industry folks take to the stage during E3, we’re used to them listing off platitudes to sell their games. However, Nakamura instead began her presentation by way of admitting she was nervous, a rare moment of honesty in what is otherwise a sales-speak heavy event. Then she started whipping out a whole bunch of moves, becoming the unlikely talking point of the Bethesda press conference in the process.
Watch her E3 presentation below:
Highlight: Fallout 76’s redemption arc
Fallout 76 was one of the shoddiest examples of Games as a Service at launch, a cynical effort to pull in the whales while simultaneously failing to offer anything substantial for Fallout fans to sink their teeth into. Bethesda’s Todd Howard took to the stage at E3, noting how the studio had been listening to player feedback and was still looking to transform the game into something that would more capably reward its dedicated players.
Part of this includes its upcoming Wastelanders update, free DLC that adds NPCs, dialogue trees, and more. A 52-player battle royale mode will also be added to the game, with Nuclear Winter finally placing the spotlight on competitive play.
PvP has been a sore subject in Fallout 76, with the game poorly implementing player vs player combat. Nuclear Winter looks to rectify this with its own dedicated mode, and while it’d still be nice to see PvP being reworked in the main game, this is still set to be a big addition to the game. Maybe it’s time we gave it another shot.
Lowlight: Cheering for NPCs in Fallout 76
While we may have been impressed by Fallout 76‘s showing at the Bethesda event, the unveiling of NPCs being met with rousing applause still felt undeserved. Fallout 76 should have had NPCs from the start. Its barren wasteland was one of the biggest issues with the game at launch, as the wholesale removal of NPCs made its quests an uninteresting slog. Now Bethesda has finally announced that NPCs are being added to the game, which is certainly welcome news, but is still Bethesda just adding things to the game that should have been there in the first place.
Even though Fallout 76 isn’t exactly a traditional RPG, the complete absence of NPCs still made its world feel empty. With only the occasional encounter with another player to spice things up, Fallout 76 was missing what made the main Fallout series so popular, and now Bethesda is having to retroactively bring it up to scratch.
Highlight: Doom Eternal‘s Battlemode looks like mayhem
Doom Eternal rounded off the Bethesda E3 2019 presentation, and yep, it still looks like something I want to play. Developer id Software also revealed its PvP multiplayer mode, titled Battlemode, which sees one player assume the role of the Slayer before taking on two other players taking control of demons. It looks absolutely chaotic and I love it, with it offering yet another reason to pick up the Doom sequel outside of its main single-player mode.
Lowlight: No Elder Scrolls 6 or Starfield
Bethesda confirmed the lack of Elders Scrolls 6 and Starfield ahead of its E3 show, but we still would’ve liked to have seen something from either game. Last year we got teaser trailers for both, but Bethesda was missing a big announcement this year, and either game could have filled that void.
What’s next for Bethesda after E3 2019?
Clearly, Bethesda is looking to right the wrongs of Fallout 76, and it’s admirable that the company is still looking at ways to keep its audience despite its major teething issues. The updates being available for free is a nice touch, and while many will have dropped away from the game with no intention of returning, plenty more will likely be intrigued by its battle royale mode and the Wastelanders update.
In Ghostwire and Deathloop, Bethesda also has a couple of super intriguing new IPs, and previously announced games such as Doom Eternal still look like tons of fun. Bethesda may have gone over a few bumps in the road recently, but at E3 2019 it was made clear that there’s still plenty for the studio’s fans to be excited about.