E3 2017: Six Upcoming Modern Games That Classic Gamers Will Love
E3 is a place for the latest and greatest, and there certainly was no shortage of huge, complex, and innovative games on the show floor this year. However, we know some people would rather stick to the classic styles of more simplistic game play found in the 80’s and early 90’s. If you’ve been feeling overwhelmed by the abundance of AAA gaming blockbusters lately, we’ve compiled a list of modern games from E3 that make the old new again and are perfect for more classic oriented gamers!
1) Sonic Mania
Sonic Mania condenses everything that you loved about the Sega Genesis classics into one beautiful, punchy product. Sonic Mania allows the chance not only to revisit some of Sonic’s most iconic levels with a brand new twist, but elegantly reintroduces the elements of Sonic that made those games so memorable in the first place. The uninterrupted sense of speed, the vibrant visuals, and the dynamic stages that fall apart as you speed and bounce around them–all of it looks and most importantly feels better than ever. With three distinct characters, Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles, to choose from, the game offers up different ways to experience any given stage. If you would rather go from start to finish as quickly as possible, Sonic is your man–but if you favor exploration and uncovering as many secrets as possible, you may want to choose Knuckles or Tails. The game remixes classic stages with new twists and secrets, but also offers up plenty of all new content that feels just as good, if not better, than any stage in one of the Genesis classics. All of you that couldn’t put the 16-bit era behind them–this one’s for you! You can read more in depth thoughts of ours on Sonic Mania here.
Sonic Mania launches August 15th, for Playstation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC.
Matterfall may look like an intimidating, cutting edge game–but underneath all of its flair, lives very classic, tried and true gameplay. Evoking side-scrolling action shooters like Contra, Metroid, and Bionic Commando, Matterfall takes a universally adored genre and injects it with a shot of adrenaline and bleeding edge tech. Matterfall is very much a run and gun, side scrolling platformer. Enemies will fire on you, send bombs, and do everything they can to take you out–and the challenge of it all certainly reminds one of classic NES action games. Armed with a hand cannon and multiple side-arms–the demo I played offered only a grenade–you must expertly evade enemy fire and counter with your own while progressing through each hazardous stage. I consistently found myself beset with an onslaught of relentless enemy fire–but thankfully Matterfall’s protagonist is a hyper mobile one, and dodging shots feels just as satisfying as sending them out. Dynamic, colorful and loud, the constant explosions that shimmer across the screen as you do away with your enemies are absolutely breathtaking and are something only possible on a powerful system like the PS4. It makes one wonder how exceptionally beautiful a game like Contra could look when given this treatment. The crux of the game–and one that sets it about from its predecessors and contemporaries, comes in the form of being able to shoot a materialization ray. This materialization ray can fill in “empty” platforms or other such elements of the level. Filling in platforms to jump onto them and progress through the stage is key–as is materializing them to block enemy fire and get the upper hand in a firefight. If you loved classic, arcade side-scrolling shooting back in the day, Matterfall is the next step–and man is it gorgeous.
Matterfall launches August 15th, for Playstation 4.
3) Everybody’s Golf
While certainly the most unassuming game on this list, Everybody’s Golf is absolutely not to be underestimated. For those of you who remember being addicted to old-school, arcade style gaming golf–whether it be on the NES or in the arcades, Everybody’s Golf is bringing that fun back in spades. An evolution of what we know in the west as the Hot Shots franchise, Everybody’s Golf offers itself as something very accessible to non or lapsed gamers, with an intuitive avatar creation system, and a simplistic design and control scheme. Everybody’s Golf can have as little or as much depth as the given player desires. One can simply progress from hole to hole quickly in a simple quick play mode, utilizing the tried and true, timing based swing control, power shots, and more if they just want to grind out some good old fashioned golf. However, those looking for a little more to do can find a full fishing mini-game to dive into, the ability to drive around between holes in a golf cart to explore and get a better grasp of the course, and a deep, progression based character customization system. With easy to grasp online matchmaking and lobbies, as well local multiplayer, there’s always going to be someone to tee off with. The controls are easy to grasp, and difficult to master, as one needs to take into account factors like wind, terrain, and clubs in order to get the best shot. The game does a pretty good job of setting you up as well as it possibly can, though–so if you’re not an expert as positioning the perfect shot, you’ll still be able to knock in birdies without too much trouble. Just how much fun Everybody’s Golf can be took this writer off guard, so don’t sleep on this one.
Everybody’s Golf launches August 29th, for Playstation 4.
4) Mega Man Legacy Collection 2
Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 is a slick repackaging of a couple of the oft-forgotten Mega Man games, 7 and 8, as well as the two nouveau-classic entries in the series, 9 and 10, which while released not ten years ago, offer the familiar thrill of NES Mega Man. Fans of the blue bomber from days past will find a lot to love here, with beautifully remastered graphics that pop what would otherwise be dated looking games. The game’s remain functionally the same as you remember them–however one welcome addition comes in the form of a dedicated turbo button; that is to say, by simply holding down one button Mega Man will continually fire shots without end, which goes a long way in helping less experienced players take down tough bosses. Additionally, one can find a host of challenges for each game’s template–offering brand new ways to play each game and utilize Mega Man’s specific skills. The challenges give a spark of newness and life to the remastered games, allowing this collection to flourish as more than just quick and easy ports. Legacy Collection 2 also offers a gallery of interesting concept art that one can peruse at their own leisure–making this a must for any Mega Man historians out there.
Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 launches August 5th, for Playstation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
5) Super Lucky’s Tale
For those of you nostalgic for classic Playstation and Nintendo 64 platforming adventures, look no further than Super Lucky’s Tale. Built off of the Oculus game Lucky’s Tale by Playful (a studio led by the creator of mobile hit Words with Friends), Super Lucky’s Tale arrives hot on the heels of games like Yooka-Laylee to deliver on that 90’s nostalgia kick. Super Lucky’s Tale is more than simply nostalgic though–it’s a rock solid 3D platformer built with tons of TLC to set it apart from its contemporaries. You play as Lucky, an orange fox boy scurrying around solving puzzles, collecting coins, climbing platforms, and digging underground. The levels I had the opportunity to demo were challenging, yet aesthetically simplistic which made for an experience that hearkened back both to 16-bit platformers as well as their 3D successors. The environments in Super Lucky’s Tale are fairly small, reminding me of the more straightforward approach of games like Super Mario 3D Land as opposed to something like Mario 64 or Sunshine–which allows for a lot of tight platforming in quick succession and plenty of action. I fell prey to some challenges jumps and dangerous traps a handful of times getting from the start to the finish of the demo, which was very welcome in an age of games–especially the colorful kind–that tend to skew too easy. There are plenty of fireballs to avoid, platforms to precariously bounce off of, wind currents to ride, and lots more ways to get yourself offed in the colorful world of Super Lucky’s Tale. Lucky’s ability to burrow underground for a few moments is the highlight of the game, the crux of its design, and what sets it apart from other 3D platformers. The mechanic offers fun and intuitive ways to get around enemies and take them out, to reach hidden collectibles, and solve puzzles. I felt brilliant burrowing underground to sneak attack an enemy from behind and get underneath a metal cage. Super Lucky’s Tale also offers the distinction of being created with Xbox One X in mind, so those that choose to upgrade to Microsoft’s powerful new console will be able to play the game in stunning 4K at a buttery smooth 60fps. Our experience with the game on Xbox One X looked and played like a dream, and we can’t wait to see what else the game has to offer.
Super Lucky’s Tale launches November 7th, alongside Xbox One X, for Xbox One.
6) Metroid: Samus Returns
While Matterfall channeled some of our best memories of Metroid’s run and gun sequences, there really can be no substitute for a proper Metroid game–and it’s been far too long since we’ve had one. Metroid: Samus Returns is an expanded remake of the Gameboy classic Metroid II: Return of Samus. The 3D artstyle looks great and breathes new life into what was once a monochromatic adventure in 1991. Samus moves quickly, able to move as she’s firing resulting in snappy action sequences and pinpoint precision aiming. Samus can now aim in full 360 degrees, allowing for a great sense of freedom while aiming, whether it be standard fire or missiles, giving the player more control over the action than in the Gameboy original. Also new to this version of the game is a counter mechanic that allows Samus to unleash a devastating melee attack as an enemy closes in on her–something that is immensely satisfying despite remaining fairly simple and easy to pull off. Everything you love about a good, labyrinthine 2D Metroid game returns here, as Samus has to navigate her way through tons of obstacles and puzzles. Be ready to back track and uncover every hidden passageway and secret as you collect more abilities such as Samus’ classic morph ball. An intuitive map fills out the more that you explore, and you can even place special markers on your map to make it your own and leave notes for things you may want to come back to when you have a few new abilities. It really takes one back to the days of pulling out a map that was included in your game’s instruction manual, and drawing all over it with notes. Metroid: Samus Returns is filled with all of the heart and soul of the games that have come before it, and is looking to be a highlight for anyone who hasn’t played a game quite like it in a long time.
Metroid: Samus Returns launches September 15th, for Nintendo 3DS.