As usual, E3 2017 unveiled a string of blockbuster games that might have you questioning whether your current PC will be fast enough to run them. With a focus on VR and 4K, two things are clear — you’re going to need a powerful processor and a capable graphics card to play next year’s biggest games.
Because titles like EA’s Star Wars: Battlefront 2 will push PC technology to the limit. Demoed with a map set on the beautiful planet of Naboo, Battlefront 2 certainly stakes its claim as the most visually impressive game at E3 2017. Played in 4K, with PC settings cranked up to Ultra, Star Wars has never looked so wonderfully realistic.
Time for an X-Series CPU?
According to Eurogamer, the metalwork on the droids and vehicles during the demo “looked sensational, and regardless of how you may feel about Star Wars Episode 1, Naboo’s architecture and style was a highpoint and DICE’s representation is sensational.”
This is arguably the sort of good-looking, fast-paced multiplayer game that high-end processors like Intel’s Core X-Series were built for.
And it’s not the only title that might demand a tactical CPU/GPU upgrade come 2018. If it’s an FPS you’re looking for, then EA also unveiled Bioware’s Anthem — a third-person, exosuit-wearing, monster-battling, socially-orientated, open world shooter that has an unashamed Destiny vibe to it.
Far Cry 5, Wolfenstein 2
Elsewhere, Microsoft plugged the long-delayed, cel-shaded Crackdown 3 (a Play Anywhere title for Windows 10 due for release in November), while Ubisoft gave us another glimpse at Far Cry 5. The latter transplants the series’ tried-and-tested FPS mechanics from Far Cry 4’s freedom fighting in the Himalayas to doomsday cult-smashing in Montana.
If these don’t float your boat then keep an eye out for Metro Exodus, an open world follow-up to 2014’s Metro: Last Light. The freshly announced Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus also looks promising, while a multiplayer trailer for Call of Duty: WWII revealed more about the franchise’s return to its 1940s roots.
E3 2017 wasn’t all run-and-gun, however. There was run-and-bow in Assassin’s Creed: Origins, which shifts its tower-climbing, stealth-killing gameplay from the grunge of the London-set Syndicate to sandy, sun-drenched ancient Egypt. As ever, the game will undoubtedly look its best on high-end PC systems.
A pirate’s life for Ubisoft
There was also sail-and-gun. We’ve looked at Rare’s shared world adventure Sea of Thieves before, but Ubisoft’s Skull & Bones came as a surprise. Watching the trailer (which you can do below), it looks like Ubisoft has taken the sailing sequences from Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag and turned them into a pirate game.
Not that we’re complaining. The waterborne adventuring and battling was the best bit of Black Flag by far. By dropping the mechanics into a beautiful multiplayer world, Skull & Bones will allow you to build fleets, customise ships, and go to war with AI- and player-controlled rivals alike. Yarrrghh!
These were just some of the biggest games at E3 2017. There were many more, such as: Monster Hunter World, FIFA 18 (with a new Journey mode), Fallout VR and Forza Motorsport 7 (set in Dubai and featuring new racing trucks).
Every year at E3, the games keep on getting bigger and better, the gameplay faster and more ambitious, the display resolution higher and smoother. While Microsoft announced the 4K-capable Xbox One X (formerly known as Xbox Scorpio), it’s arguably just catching up with the power of a top-end GPU and the latest Core processors.
With a few exceptions, all the best games of E3 2017 are coming to PC.