BY ALEX WAKEFORD
Gamescom is the biggest annual trade event in the world for the gaming industry, and with Geoff Keighley’s recently announced ‘Opening Night Live’ pre-show it looks like this year will be bigger than ever.
Universally Speaking has all the details you need to know about this event, now less than a week away!
OPENING NIGHT LIVE
Gamescom started in 2009, held annually at the Koelnmesse convention centre in Cologne, Germany. This year, it will run from Monday 19th through Friday 23rd.
Over the years, Gamescom has hosted its share of exclusive announcements, but this year will be different as over 15 publishers and world premieres will be front-loaded at this event.
It is notable that Hideo Kojima will also be making a special live guest appearance (his first Gamescom since 2014) to show off a new look at the still-enigmatic, much anticipated Death Stranded, set to release November 8th this year.
This overview – not dissimilar from The Game Awards end-of-year show, also hosted by Geoff Keighley – will feature titles from industry titans as well as a few promised unannounced surprises too.
It starts at 7pm BST (8pm CEST, 11am PDT) on Monday 19 August, you can tune into it here.
In addition to the Opening Night Live event, there will also be several other conferences from Inside Xbox and Google Stadia – also on the Monday.
- Inside Xbox
– UK: 5pm (BST)
– Europe: 6pm (CEST)
– East Coast (US): 9am (EDT)
– West Coast (US): 12pm (PDT)
- Google Stadia Connect
– UK: 6pm (BST)
– Europe: 7pm (CEST)
– East Coast (US): 1pm (EDT)
– West Coast (US): 10am (PDT)
The list of publishers, as revealed by Keighley on Twitter, includes the following:
From Activision, we can undoubtedly expect to see more of the upcoming Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, a soft-reboot of the popular shooter that follows fan-favourite Captain John Price.
Bandai Namco have many new titles coming up, but perhaps the one that has particular interest is Elden Ring, the next title from FromSoftware which will see collaboration between Hidetaka Miyazaki and A Song of Ice and Fire author George R. R. Martin.
Also greatly anticipated is Man of Medan from Supermassive Games, the spiritual successor to 2015’s horror hit Until Dawn. Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot, Code Vein, and several other titles are also expected to be shown.
Bungie (who became independent after splitting with Activision at the start of the year, assuming full publishing rights and responsibilities for the Destiny franchise) will most likely be showing a new look at the New Light experience and the upcoming expansion, Destiny 2: Shadowkeep, which will see the return of Eris Morn as Guardians must face a threat that has emerged from the shadows of our long-forgotten Moon.
Originally planned to release in September, the expansion has been delayed a few weeks until October 1st, with Bungie transparently offering their reasoning that it “would benefit from a bit more time in the oven.”Square Enix likewise has a number of titles that are being cooked up. Marvel’s Avengers was announced at E3 this year, Dying Light 2 from Techland has caught many peoples’ eyes, Final Fantasy VII Remake is hugely anticipated. Another project of interest on this front is Deck Nine (the folks behind 2017’s incredible Life is Strange: Before The Storm) who have an unannounced game in the works.
Xbox Game Studios will likely be very heavily focused on the upcoming Gears 5, which officially went gold last week. It has been confirmed that we will be seeing new campaign footage (something that The Coalition has kept very quiet since their E3 2018 announcement and cinematic preview).
Gears 5 will be launching with five highly-anticipated modes. There’s the campaign, multiplayer, and Horde – the staples of the Gears experience – but a brand new co-operative mode called ‘Escape’ will also ship with the game.
This will also feature a map maker, a first for the series, that allows players to design and extensively customise their own levels for this mode, then share them (similar to the file share system prevalent in the Halo series).Sony is, of course, a big question mark.
Having skipped E3 this year (for the first time), while next-gen plans from Microsoft were announced with Project Scarlett launching with Halo Infinite in 2020, Sony has remained tight-lipped about their own plans with the PlayStation 5.
Hugely anticipated titles, such as The Last of Us Part II and Ghost of Tsushima, are yet to receive release windows and haven’t been seen since E3 2018.
The Last of Us Part II was announced for the PlayStation 4, but with the console’s lifespan drawing to a close, the final roster of games that will play the console out before the next generation hits is yet unknown. The news broke earlier this year (in May) that the game is in its final stages of development, so we could be seeing it sooner rather than later.
Interestingly, Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us came as a sort of ‘swan song’ for the PS3 in June 2013, just five months before the PS4 released…
Could history repeat itself here, or may plans have shifted to something else entirely?
Historically, Gamescom has focused more on imminent titles, meaning that next-gen plans from Sony could well remain under wraps until next year.Nintendo has announced that a variety of Switch games that will be available to play at its booth – Luigi’s Mansion 3, The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening, and the Switch version of The Witcher III: The Wild Hunt are among the names included.
Ubisoft is expected to show more of Ghost Recon: Breakpoint (due to release in October) and Watch Dogs: Legion.
As for the rest, we’ll have to wait and see!
What titles are you most excited to see at Gamescom this year? Are there any announcements you’re holding out for? Which imminent titles are you planning to dive into?
Let us know in the comments below!
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