Midway through Bethesda's keynote showcase at E3 2018, EP and game director Todd Howard – he's worked on every Elder Scrolls game since 1996 – noted that he has been at the company for nearly a quarter of a century. So when Howard lifted the lid on Bethesda's first new franchise in 25 years – it's called Starfield, it's a single-player experience, and that's it for now – it felt poetic that he'd be the one to announce it. But Howard had a bigger reveal for Skyrim fans:
it's coming to Alexa The Elder Scrolls VI is in the works, yep.
Both were part of Howard's closing near-future remarks, and hence don't have any release dates. You can bet they'll be at E3 next year and maybe even the 2020 one. For now, here are the biggest Bethesda E3 2018 announcements that matter:
1) A new Elder Scrolls, for every platform out there
Buoyed by the success of free-to-play Fallout Shelter – it has been played by 120 million people, according to Howard, more than every other Bethesda game combined – Bethesda announced a new free-to-play game in its other popular universe: The Elder Scrolls Blades, a first-person role-playing game design to support every system out there, be it mobile, console, desktop and all kinds of VR systems.
Bethesda is promising console-quality graphics for Blades, which has two great features built for the modern age: one, it will have cross-platform compatibility everywhere – for example, someone on an iPhone can play with someone using the Oculus Rift – and two, it can be played in portrait mode on phones, which is highly unusual. The Elder Scrolls Blades is out in autumn this year.
2) Fallout goes all out with multiplayer
Though it had already been unveiled on two separate occasions, Bethesda had smartly saved a lot of details for its next instalment in the popular post-apocalyptic franchise. Set in West Virginia, Fallout 76 gains its title from Vault 76 – the fallout shelters designed to protect humans during a nuclear war – which is in turn named after the celebration of the US' tercentenary, i.e. the 300th anniversary of its founding since 1776. That makes Fallout 76 a prequel to all previous games in the franchise.
More importantly, Fallout 76 is an online-only experience, which means every survivor you meet will be a real person. You can still play on your own if you like, but things will be a lot easier if you team up with others to build and fortify bases, take on radiation-fuelled monsters, and try to survive. Speaking of survival, Fallout 76 won't take away your items when you die. And oh also, you can get access to nukes and wipe out others, allowing you to move in and raid it for rare resources.
Fallout 76 is out November 14.
3) Wolfenstein heads to Nazi-controlled 1980s Paris
The alternate history of the new Wolfenstein, that started four years ago with the Nazis having won World War II, jumps two decades into the 1980s with the third instalment – Wolfenstein: Youngblood – putting you in control of the twin daughters of former protagonist, vet William "B.J." Blazkowicz, and his love interest Anya, who you may remember was pregnant at the start of award-winning Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus.
The Blazkowicz twins Jess and Soph are continuing the fight against the Nazis in 1980s Paris, after their father has apparently gone missing. And given the dual-protagonist nature of Wolfenstein: Youngblood, you can choose to play the entire game in co-op if you like. The game's still in development, and has a vague release date of sometime in 2019.