There might not be an E3 this year, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be any game announcements this month. While E3 has traditionally been a big part of why, June is typically the time of the year when game companies like to make their big announcements to get fans excited for not just the end of the year, but the future of gaming as a whole. We’ve already seen that a little bit with Wednesday’s trailers of Sonic Frontiers and Pokémon. However, these were just individual announcements. What fans really look forward to are the big showcase events.
These showcases during events like E3 are when companies like Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo put together a series of trailers and announcements for fans to get excited about. Alongside those huge showcases are smaller ones, sometimes hosted by publishers like Ubisoft and other times by media organizations such as IGN, or groups like Wholesome Direct that just want to showcase how different video games can be. It’s basically one giant month-long celebration of video games and it’s a fun time to follow along.
In the past, it was easy to just tell someone when the dates for E3 were and to keep an eye on Twitch/YouTube during that timeframe, but since there is no official E3 this year everyone’s showcases are a bit more spread out. That’s why we’ve looked at what to expect this month and highlighted a few events that every video game fan should watch.
PlayStation State of Play – June 2
PlayStation’s State of Play was the first major showcase of the month, giving us about 30 minutes worth of upcoming games for the PlayStation system of consoles. The headliner was a Resident Evil 4 remake trailer that showed off a more cinematic version of the beloved game — as well as the news that it will be part of their new VR offerings — as well as a March 2023 release date. We also got a release date and new trailer for Final Fantasy XVI and looks at some other offerings, although there was unfortunately nothing new for God of War: Ragnarok. The summer State of Play set the table for what will be a busy few weeks for game trailers and showcases.
Summer Game Fest – June 9
The third year of Geoff Keighley’s answer to E3 has a chance to be its biggest year yet. In 2021, Summer Game Fest got ahead of all the major publishers and E3 to lead off the announcement cycle. It didn’t disappoint either with major titles like Elden Ring being announced during the presentation. This year, with no E3 in site, Summer Game Fest has a great opportunity to separate itself from E3 and potentially influence the announcement cycle. It also has the opportunity to showcase some major titles.
Since Summer Game Fest is not affiliated with any one publisher that means we should get a pretty strong variety of games to look at during the presentation. Major AAA titles, indies, Xbox, PlayStation, Nintendo, etc could all make appearances here. It’s definitely going to be one of the must see presentations this month.
Wholesome Direct – June 11
We fell in love with the idea of Wholesome Direct last year and we’re really glad to see it making a comeback this year. Wholesome Direct is a relatively new presentation that focuses on games that don’t focus on violence. Video games are historically very violent — just look at how many games come out every year with a heavy focus on guns — but there’s been a greater focus as of late to make more games that focus on telling different kinds of stories. Ones about farming, animals, or simply making our way through life.
There is nothing wrong with enjoying a mindless game about violence, but events like Wholesome Direct a breath of fresh air among the sea of action games that flood the industry. This is a must watch event because it shows us how video games as a whole are changing for the better.
Xbox and Bethesda Games Showcase – June 12
The Xbox and Bethesda Games Showcase is Microsoft and Bethesda’s joint conference. Since purchasing Bethesda in 2020, Xbox has been adamant about keeping the Bethesda name in events like their summer showcase. Not only does this continue to let Bethesda feel like its an independent free thinking company, but there are still many fans out there who exclusively play Bethesda games like Fallout and The Elder Scrolls.
Since it’s an Xbox showcase we can expect a lot of Game Pass, maybe some information about the Activision Blizzard purchase, and hopefully some more information about the next major Xbox Studios release. On the Bethesda side of things, there are two updates everyone is going to want. Something on The Elder Scrolls VI, and some footage of the recently delayed Starfield.
Look out for surprise announcements!
Since there is not an official E3 this year there isn’t really anything to corral developers into all announcing their games, trailers, and showcase events at the same time. Ubisoft and Square Enix typically have events but have so far remained fairly quiet on what they have planned for the summer. We also have yet to hear if there will be a Nintendo Direct, but it’s not unusual for Nintendo to announce a Direct the same week one has been scheduled. So don’t be surprised if throughout the month of June we get some pop up presentations to check out.
It’s also a good idea to keep an eye out for individual trailer announcements. Some companies don’t have enough to show off this year to put together an entire presentation, but they do have enough to release a trailer or gameplay showcase. Don’t let those smaller announcements slip by and keep your ear to the ground. It’s gonna be a hectic summer but at the end of it we’re going to have plenty of video games to be excited about.