The famous and exciting event in the world of the video game market is the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3). Almost all major publishers and developers of the world are going to sunny Los Angeles to show their novelties, announce projects and sign new contracts. Among the participants of the conference, the publishers of mobile apps are traditionally represented. For companies and game enthusiasts, this is a good opportunity not only to learn about new products and possible competitors in the market but also to trace the trends of the world game development. Among the mobile developers at E3 2017 one could find such global and legendary companies as Ubisoft, Nintendo and Electronic Arts. What novelties were presented this year by these truly great companies and what to expect of the mobile game industry as a whole, read in this article.
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E3 2017 mobile game developers
Ubisoft + Nintendo
Ubisoft continues to actively fight for the title of the third-largest publisher on the market, annually exhibiting high-profile projects and showing unusual shows. Being one of the greatest game publishers it surpassed itself and held an interesting conference, pleasantly surprising even the most inveterate optimists. The head of Ubisoft, Yves Guillaume, and Shigeru Miyamoto of Nintendo appeared in the room together and announced the beginning of a new era of cooperation between companies. After the release of Nintendo Switch, both companies are excited about the new chance to renew the partnership.
During the E3 exhibition, Ubisoft publishers together with Nintendo presented a new project Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle as part of their presentations. The game represents an unusual mash-up of two universes from the former franchises of the companies. In this game, the world is in danger and Mario and his new unusual friends must unite to save it. It allows one to conduct tactical battles in a step-by-step mode, with the ability to use objects on the map to obtain protection and benefits in a battle. Also, the heroes need to use shelters and unusual melee and ranged weapons. Shelters in the game are destructible.
The player chooses three of the eight heroes, for which then a single campaign takes place. Each hero has his own equipment and abilities, many of which can be combined to cause increased damage. In addition to a single adventure, which includes four worlds, there are cooperative tests of varying complexity in the Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, where each player controls two heroes. Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle is an exclusive for the Nintendo Switch console. This unusual game with elements of turn-based strategy will be released on August 29.
Electronic Arts – Star Wars: Battlefront II and Galaxy of Heroes
One of the most famous companies making mobile games at E3, Electronic Arts, talked a lot about Star Wars: Battlefront II, and as it comes from these conversations, on November 17, 2017, the main multiplayer shooter of the year will be released. EA promises that all the additions to the game will be free for all users, game scenarios will cover all the epochs of the Star Wars universe, and one can play not only with live opponents: a full-fledged single-player campaign will also be included. Battlefront II will be several times larger than its predecessor, and it will also remaster the mechanism of shooting from blasters and provide more smooth flight.
For mobile games, the company announced Admiral Thrawn and more Empire Dark Side content coming to the 2015 game Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes. Fans are excited that finally a cleansing character is coming to the game but some people are wondering if this announcement is big enough for the world of mobile.
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E3 lessons for Mobile developers
The main discovery of the exhibition is that except individual representatives among mobile games, generally the most authoritative of E3 2017 mobile game developers have ignored this industry, which can be considered one of the new trends in the gaming industry. A number of games for desktops and virtual reality devices were presented, so we can conclude that the development of the gaming industry starts to move away from compact devices such as smartphones, and move further towards the use of bright visual effects and new options for interacting with the game.
Why were so few games for mobile devices presented at E3 this year?
Small screens and hardware limitations
Visual effects play a huge role in creating a certain mood during the game mainly called ‘setting’ and affect the level of player’s involvement into the gameplay. Obviously, compact devices like smartphones do not sufficiently reveal the game world because they have small screens and a lot of other hardware limitations. Recently, more and more games working with serious video effects become popular, some of them even using virtual reality and/or augmented reality. Although the trend to use more high-tech visual effects was always present, it did not greatly influence the mobile games industry until this moment. E3 2017 Results for Mobile game developers clearly showed that mainstream games have no future on smartphones.
When it comes to mobile games it’s hard to think of any other control in the game except the button control. The appearance of touch screens changed the situation, however, this did not last long: users want more interaction with the game, more interesting options for single and joint games. Together with a small screen, this type of control becomes problematic for the gamers, which leads to unintentional errors and, as a result, frustration for the players.
There is an opinion that the freemium is gradually killing good mobile games. Being a means of monetizing the game process, it forces players to buy additional game resources that can be obtained by playing the game for a long time or successfully coping with the game tasks. It is assumed that you can pay money to reduce the amount of time that you spend playing the game. That’s why it’s bad for games:
• Not playing the game becomes too expensive and, ultimately, it reduces the value players see in the game.
• If some gamers play by the same rules and others can pay money and play by the other rules, one cannot meaningfully compare their achievements.
• Real money payments from players during the game can break gaming immersion.
• It is impossible to make a game full-fledged both for those who pay and for those who diligently pass all the levels collecting game currency at the same time.
An example of a new game with a deep immersion in the gameplay presented at E3 2017: Transference
Ubisoft has also announced a psychological thriller for VR-devices called ‘Transference’. The game is developed in collaboration with the SpectreVision production company, one of the founders of which is the actor Elijah Wood. The Transference action unfolds in a mind that has been reconstructed in the digital form. The developers were partly inspired by a real research, in which scientists measured brain waves in an attempt to visually reconstruct dreams. Players have to uncover the secrets of the family and the house in which it lives. Users will explore the house and gradually get acquainted with its residents. Each of them has his/her own point of view on what is happening and has different memories. The player’s decisions will affect the fate of the whole family. The project will be released in the spring of 2018 on PlayStation VR, HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
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Summary: E3 2017 Results for Mobile game developers
Each year E3 lessons for Mobile developers outline the basic tendencies in a gaming world. E3 2017 exhibition was not too rich in novelties in the field of mobile games. Increasingly, developers give preference to more exciting technologies for creating a deeper game world. However, perhaps this is just a temporary trend. In addition, a significant number of game genres does not depend on a large number of visual effects in the game.