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News  13, Jun 2014

E3 2014: Gaming surprises of the week

Check out our picks for the games that did not get any stage presence during one of the biggest video game trade shows in the world

We’ve seen and heard all of the big announcements and titles from the earlier press conferences: Destiny featuring Tyrion Lannister’s voice, Sunset Overdrive with the colorful splashes of loveliness, Assassin’s Creed Unity and its French Revolution adventure, Battlefield Cops & Robbers edition.

But what about the other titles that didn’t get the early pre-E3 and day one spotlight treatment — the ones that will eventually end up a possible cult hit despite showcasing promising and innovative game mechanics and art style? Here are a slew of titles that somehow missed the limelight from the major press conferences but caught our eye.

Dreadnought 

The people behind the brilliant if harrowing narrative-heavy shooter Spec Ops: The Line are in the middle of developing a PC-only space flight simulation with spiffy ships and bigger battleships. Apparently, you will be able to customise all aspects of the ship from how it looks, what it fires, to even which crew members you should use. Fans of X-Wing and TIE Fighter: you may want to put this PC game onto your wish list.

Final Fantasy Agito/ Type-0

In 2011, Final Fantasy Type-0 for the PSP was considered one of the best Final Fantasy titles, even better than the recent mainstream ones numbered XIII. Unfortunately, it was only available in Japan and was never localised in English. Legally anyway; there’s a PSP fan translation out there if you look hard enough.

That has changed, as Square Enix announced an Xbox One and PS4 port of the action RPG title. Imagine if the film Battle Royale combined together with the Harry Potter series, only with less gore: that’s Final Fantasy Type-0′s theme in a nutshell. Mix it up with guy and girl students carrying different types of weapons and casting all sorts of magic, and you’ve got an action-focused RPG with a multitude of play styles and fantastical battles.

Final Fantasy Agito is a prequel to Type-0 that’s for mobile devices like the iOS and Android. Unlike Type-0, Agito’s combat is turn-based and levelling up/skills-upgrading is done by bonding with classmates and allies during non-fighting sequences. It’s also free-to-play; hopefully Square Enix learned its lesson with Final Fantasy: All The Bravest and not exploit this payment system to its own end.

White Night

White Night was included in Microsoft’s ID@Xbox montage during its press conference, but nothing else beyond that. A shame too, as it’s a survival horror-slash-puzzle-based adventure game in the veins of the cult classic Alone In The Dark series. It looks incredibly stylish with its heavy use of black and white, and seems to give off a dreaded vibe with a tinge of flair.

Habitat

Newly announced on E3 week, this space simulation puts you in charge of building a space station in orbit. You have to balance between building a livable station with food and water while also making sure it is able to fend off against space pirates and aliens while it’s flying to more bountiful areas. You’ll have to make do with scraps of junk and asteroids as materials to craft up a hardy ship, while also searching far and wide for spots with more materials. As of yet, there’s no release date on this combination of FTL and small parts of Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri.

Night In The Woods

In this adventure game, you play an anthropomorphic cat named Mae who lives in a city with other anthropomorphic animals. The game plays out like a slice of life kind of story, where they have to deal with broken homes, raise up topics on gun violence and moving out, and relationship problems be it with loved ones or family. It’s not a typical game on the show floor, but it needn’t be because that’s what makes it stand out among the other games with lots of shooting and fighting. A breath of fresh air, we must say.

Code Name: STEAM

Nintendo announced a new IP during its 3DS live showcase feature, which for some reason couldn’t be lumped up together with Nintendo’s first DIRECTV video conference. It’s a turn-based strategy game where a group called STEAM (Strike Team Eliminating the Alien Menace) led by Abraham Lincoln has to fend off Cthulu-influenced alien invaders using weaponry that uses steam. While you still take turns moving your units and plotting your attacks, the game itself has some action and shooter elements where you have to explore your surroundings before attacking.

Long story short, fans of the cult hit Advance Wars series and the X-Com reboot will want to keep an eye on this gem.

Spot any other titles we missed out that deserved a centerstage? Tell us in the comments box below. For the rest of e27′s E3 2014 write-ups, head to this link.

Jonathan Toyad

Jonathan Toyad

If you want an elaborate answer on who would win in a fight between Ultraman and Godzilla, Jonathan Toyad is your man. A six-year veteran in the game journalism industry, he did words and videos for outlets such as GameSpot, GameAxis, IGN and Stuff.TV. Fears coyotes and scorched earths.

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