E3 2018 is officially underway, kicking off with the EA Play 2018 press conference. Publisher Electronic Arts got the ball rolling with a number of new details on current and upcoming titles, including the heavily anticipated Anthem. Here’s a look at what gamers have to look forward to after today’s show.
First up on the docket was a brief look at franchise shooter Battlefield V, with EA outlining gameplay details. Mobile defense units, a deep environmental destruction system, and extensive character customization are a few key features.
EA also chose to highlight the fact that Battlefield V will not contain loot boxes. Neither will it offer a paid premium pass. Both declarations were sufficient enough to draw heavy applause from the audience.
Finally, capping off the Battlefield V portion of the show, EA confirmed that the game would also throw its hat into the ring with its own version of the immensely popular “battle royale” mode.
Next EA chose to highlight the first in its stable of sports titles, with football superstar Ronaldo narrating a trailer for FIFA 19. Set to release on September 28th, 2018, the biggest addition to FIFA 19 will be the UEFA Champions League. UEFA content will be injected across franchise, story, and Football Ultimate Team modes.
They also touched briefly on FIFA 18, which recently received a free World Cup 2018 update across all platforms. FIFA 18 is also offering a free trial period to coincide with the start of E3 2018.
Little was revealed about Madden 19 outside of a few short gameplay clips. Instead EA hosted some awkward and mostly uninteresting on-stage banter between Pittsburgh Steeler Juju Smith-Schuster and Madden 18 champion “Young Kiv”.
NBA Live 19, which will release on September 7th, 2018 will focus on “The One” mode. Here players forge a path from high school through to the NBA in a bid for greatness.
Unfortunately for those of us in the great white north, EA did not see fit to make any showing of the NHL franchise. This falls in line with previous EA Play conferences.
On the galactic front, Respawn Entertainment studio head Vince Zampella was on board to drop vague but exciting hints about their upcoming Star Wars title. With the potential title “Jedi: Fallen Order”. The game is to take place between episodes III and IV, during the “dark” times when the crippled Jedi are being hunted by the Empire.
EA Play also touched on upcoming updates to Star Wars Battlefront II. A new “squad system” for easy matchmaking with friends is coming down the pipe. A new starfighter dogfighting mode is on the way as well. Lastly, a Clone Wars-focused content update will bring Star Wars Battlefront II its largest map to date. It will also include new legendary characters in General Grievous, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Count Dooku, and Anakin Skywalker.
A few of the other headlines out of EA Play 2018 include Unravel Two—a sequel to the 2016 “EA Originals” hit—as well as a brand-new EA Originals title called Sea of Solitude.
Unravel Two introduces a new buddy for the yarn-bodied protagonist of the series and encourages co-operative multiplayer gameplay. EA made a big splash by revealing that Unravel Two is available now, as of the EA Play 2018 conference.
Sea of Solitude is a dark and atmospheric title where loneliness turns people into monsters.
Finally, saving the most anticipated upcoming release for last, EA Play 2018 closed out with new details on Bioware’s Anthem. Casey Hudson and the crew from Bioware took the stage to answer questions about the game. They also revealed a release date of February 22nd, 2019.
Anthem will feature a shared open-world multiplayer arena for questing, coupled with a closed off single-player experience which will take place in a separate “base” area. The game is designed this way to offer a balance between the popular multiplayer format of recent games combined with the single player story-driven relationships Bioware games are known for.
Anthem will also feature 4 unique Javelin (armour) classes, each with unique abilities. Your character is not tied to one specific class, but instead can switch between different Javelin classes at will. Javelin styles and colour palettes will also be fully customizable.
Lastly, staying on point with EA’s apparent commitment to addressing the elephant in the room, the Anthem team confirmed there will be no loot boxes or paid skill advantages available in the game.
These are the biggest headlines coming out of EA Play 2018. What did you find most exciting? Are you disappointed by any of the announcements or lack thereof? Let us know in the comments below.