PC Gaming Show E3 2018: Everything and the kitchen sink

Battle royale? Check. Victorian steampunk settings? Check. Survival crafting games? Check. Crytek engine? Check. Lovecraft? Check. A lengthy plug for hardware from a gaming hardware company? Check. It was everything you’d expect from the PC Gaming Show.

The show is put on by , but it’s probably important to note that many of the games that were presented were presented because they were sponsors.

 In any case, here are some games and highlights we found noteworthy.

Insomniac’s next VR game: 

Insomnica Games—arguably best known as the developers of the Ratchet & Clank series and the upcoming , both on PlayStation—has been living an alternate life as a PC VR developer for a while now. The studio already released , , and  for the Oculus Rift.

Now it’s detailing what might be its most ambitious VR title: . In it, you play as a damaged robot that wakes up in an open world and must explore and fight enemies to piece itself back together. We saw combat, flying, climbing, and walking. It looks very much made for VR, and the graphics are solid.

As a robot, you can find a mechanical component on the ground, pick it up, and attach it directly to your arm. Neat.

Sega’s best Japanese games on PC

Sega announced that several classic games will soon launch on PC, including  and , , , , and  Those are all  games, and the announcements went over well with the crowd. What we didn’t see: dates or details. Some of those games were already announced, but they’re welcome nonetheless.

Triple-A heavy hitters: and

It wasn’t all classics and VR titles, of course. We finally got some answers on  that we didn’t get during the Square-Enix livestream. We learned that the classic weapon briefcase is making a comeback, you can kill people with a fish, and you can hide from angry guards in the crowd original–style. There’s also a picture-in-picture mode that lets you keep tabs on happenings in other parts of ‘s sprawling levels.

A Square-Enix rep talked up ‘s features that will really show off your PC. The game supports HDR (they said it has improved HDR lighting on PC, but I don’t see how that’s really possible given that PC monitors are so far behind TVs in HDR implementation still), “unrivaled draw distance,” and increased destruction fidelity.

The rep also talked up ‘s physics-based aerodynamic models, which apply to everything from wind in the trees to flying vehicles to that giant tornado we’ve seen in trailers.

has been gripped in a controversial battle between its developer/publisher (Stardock) and the franchise’s original creators. But it had a prominent spot at this show (note that Stardock was listed as a sponsor).

There weren’t a ton of new details, but we did learn that—unlike , which builds out its simulation of procedurally generated world as you explore it— simulates the thousands of worlds in the game all the time, no matter where in the space you are. That means ships are doing their thing on far-off planets even if you’re light years away. We’re not sure how far this extends, but it does sound cool.

Stardock shared the release date, too: September 20.

Other noteworthy titles

We’re not going to list all eight trillion games that were shown at this event, but here are some other highlights we thought noteworthy.

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Samuel Axon Based in Los Angeles, Samuel is the Senior Reviews Editor at Ars Technica, where he covers Apple products, display technology, internal PC hardware, and more. He is a reformed media executive who has been writing about technology for 10 years at Ars Technica, Engadget, Mashable, PC World, and many others.
Email[email protected]//Twitter@SamuelAxon
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