Square Enix just did a lightning round for its press conference, getting through its entire E3 slate in a clean 30 minutes. There were one or two surprises, but the real shocker were the games that weren't at the press event.
No Final Fantasy VII Remake. No Avengers Project. Some were expecting at least a glimpse into either title, but no dice. Final Fantasy VII Remake has remained mostly dark since Square Enix took development back from CyberConnect2. Given both missing the biggest stage of the year, it's likely we won't be seeing them for some time now.
But what did Square Enix talk about?
Shadow of the Tomb Raider
Square Enix is all in on the final entry of the Tomb Raider reboot trilogy. Shadow of the Tomb Raider is the game where Lara will finally become the Tomb Raider she was meant to be. (Wasnt that the previous two games?) New gameplay and a sizzle reel showed off Lara hiding in the jungle like the goddamn Predator, underwater exploration, and a ton of explosions. Shadow of the Tomb Raider is coming to PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on September 14, 2018.
Final Fantasy XIV ⨯ Monster Hunter World
Final Fantasy XIV builds on its history of interesting crossover events with this upcoming collaboration. Monster Hunter World will be coming to FFXIV in some fashion this Summer, with the teaser trailer showing a Palico pal and a Rathian over Azim Steppe. At the very least, there should be Palico pets and new Monster Hunter-themed armor, right?
This was one of the few new and unannounced titles on the Square Enix press stream. The teaser begins with a historical timeline for the fictional Helos Empire, starting in 5000 CE with the discovery of something called the Oversoul. The timeline ends in the year 5475 CE with an event called "The Awakening".
Then the trailer switches to a scene showing one armored figure using some sort of energy tendrils to steal a massive sword from an enemy. 5495 CE marks the time that humanity apparently strikes back against the calamity that befell this world.
It might seem a bit cliche, but the overall trailer has that feeling of epic decay and history that permeates From Software's Dark Souls game. PlatinumGames looks like it's getting the chance to stake its own path following the success of Nier: Automata. What are they going to create? Babylon's Fall is coming to PC and PS4 in 2019.
Just Cause 4
This title was leaked on Steam and briefly touched upon at the Microsoft press event, but Square Enix and developer Avalanche Software fleshed out what we can expect from Rico's latest adventure. Just Cause 4 takes place on the island of Solis, which offers the biggest play area yet in a Just Cause game and multiple biomes outside of the tropicality that players have come to expect from the series.
The trailer played up the new extreme weather events. Rico and his foes will sometimes have to contend with tornados, lightning, sandstorms, and blizzards while they're fighting it out. These events can rip up the landscape or change your tactical options.
The dictator Rico is toppling this time is Gabriela, the head of an organization called the Black Hand. To help you out in all your rampant destruction, Avalanche has added some new vehicles, changed up the vehicle handling, and improved on the tethering control of Rico's grappling hook. Now there are more options available to players when it comes to making their own instruments of doom.
Just Cause 4 is coming to PC, PS4, and Xbox One on December 4, 2018.
The Quiet Man
Square Enix had a very weird teaser for a new game called The Quiet Man. Part of the trailer was in live-action, showing what's assumedly the main character, a deaf man, walking into an alley with some criminal element. The confrontation part of the trailer looked to be digital gameplay, pointing to some kind of hybrid live-action title? Square Enix will be showing more about the game in August.
The Best of The Rest
The press event closed on Kingdom Hearts 3, which we already knew is coming on January 29, 2019 for PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One. Speaking of Xbox One, Nier: Automata is finally seeing a release on that platform with all the previously-released DLC. Finally, Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age is still heading West for PlayStation 4 and PC on September 9, 2018.
All in all, it was a pretty low-key event for Square Enix in terms of new games or further glimpses of marquee titles. Most of the 30-minute runtime for the conference was given over to games we already knew were coming, either through previous announcements, previews, or leaks. That leaves us with a press conference that's decidedly "fine" for Square Enix.