When it came time to pick my particular beat for this year's event, I stuck to the force that keeps me invested in this industry to begin with: The constant search for something new.
While I enjoy my comfort food standbys, it's games with compellingly strange premises that tend to win me over. So while I'll gladly drop another 40 hours into the reliable RPG antics of Bloodborne, I'm just as psyched to play, say, a pigeon dating sim, a locked-room high school murder mystery, or what's essentially a Red Dead Redemption demake. Is the protagonist in your new game the ghost of a sea cucumber? Well, sign me up.
Knowing that E3 usually throws the spotlight on the most reliable brands, I'm not limiting my scope only to games with out-there concepts, though. Innovation can and does happen within the realm of our mega-franchises, and I'm hoping we'll see certain ones really make the jump to this current generation in terms of gameplay. Will Uncharted 4 be another fairly straightforward shooting gallery like the last three? Probably, but who knows? Will the new Assassin's Creed give me a reason to come back after I politely excused myself from the table following part two? Can Square-Enix put together a Kingdom Hearts game I'd actually want to play? Yeah, I realize this is just a little snarky, but I'd like nothing more than for these series to give me a reason to get excited—and that's basically what E3 is for, isn't it?
And, of course, I don't think my E3 focus is unique in that I'm also incredibly excited about the super-unexpected news that hasn't been leaked. For all we know, Nintendo is prepping for a gritty StarTropics reboot, Bubsy 4D is a Morpheus exclusive, and Beyond Good and Evil 2 might actually be real! As I said in our recent community piece, it's those out-of-nowhere curveballs that end up being the most exciting part of any E3—I mean, who would have expected Vib Ribbon of all things to make an appearance at last year's Sony conference?
So yeah, even though I won't actually be attending the event in person, I'll be just as invested, and will actually have some time to write—my comrades won't be so fortunate, which is why I'm staying at Mother Base this year. And without having to deal with all the L.A. Convention Center chaos that tends to angry up the blood, I'm hoping to be a little more positive about things this time around. So please, join me in my search for video games that are actually trying something new! I promise it won't hurt.