Five Game Announcements We'd Love to See At E3 2016...
It's that time of year again! E3 2016 is right around the corner, and as usual, we'll be treated to new snippets of information about our favorite sports games. EA will still have a briefing this year despite holding their own EA Play event in the LA vicinity, so we can expect to hear more about Madden 17, NHL 17 and FIFA 17. We'll probably hear from 2K as well, along with any other companies that plan to show off their upcoming sports titles.
Despite all that goodness, there hasn't been enough variety for us sports gamers at E3 in recent years. We'd all love to see a major company come out with a brand-new (or revitalized) sports series, so here are a few things for the wishlist heading into this year's show.
AAA Baseball Game - Xbox One
Not since MLB 2K13 has there been a major baseball title on an Xbox platform. Xbox One fans are consistently hammering at the doors of Microsoft for a reason to resist the temptation of MLB: The Show, but there's seemingly nothing in the pipeline. For now, the only way for fans to get their baseball fix is to buy a PS4 or settle for a lighter option such as RBI Baseball. If EA came at us with a revamped MVP Baseball, or an entirely different company took hold of the license, Xbox fans would collectively breathe a sigh of relief.
EA Sports' NCAA Football 17
Alright, let's tone down the excitement for a minute. Some might say pigs have a better chance of taking flight than this being announced at E3 this year. Let's be honest; it almost certainly won't happen. It could be a possibility at some point, though. Back in January, an update was posted to the EA Sports NCAA Football Facebook page with the message: "Our heart still beats for the big game". Unfortunately, this was later denied to have anything to do with a future title, but it's clear EA still has the passion to bring it back at some point.
Top Spin 4
New Tennis Game
The most recent console-based tennis games have all been excellent. Unfortunately, they aren't all that recent anymore. There was Top Spin 4 in 2011, which many would argue is the best tennis game to date. That year also saw the release of Virtua Tennis 4, providing plenty of arcade fun, while EA Sports came at us with the superb Grand Slam Tennis 2 in 2012. After a hectic couple of years, everything vanished. There are no signs of any tennis games on the horizon, aside from an update to the brilliant Tennis Elbow series on PC. I for one would be ecstatic if 2K sprung a surprise like Top Spin 5 on us at this year's event.
EA Sports' Fight Night Champion 2
EA's desire to shift their focus from the boxing ring to the Octagon with the release of EA SPORTS UFC was understandable. That said, many of us are also big fans of EA's long-running boxing series, and enough time has passed for us to long for its return. This is another series that enjoyed lots of success with its last outing. Fight Night Champion was highly praised and was arguably the best iteration of the series so far. Now, it'd be great to see it make the jump to the current gen. If nothing else, think of the graphics!
Oh, how we've been longing for another update to EA's Skate series. We finally thought we could scratch that skateboarding itch on current gen consoles when Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 5 came along, but the less said about that, the better. EA's Instagram posts are often filled with comments requesting Skate 4 be announced in the near future. Here's the bad part: I don't think it's going to happen. Despite how much we'd all love to see it, EA has confirmed via Twitter that a "new game is not in development." Let's all hope they do a U-turn and surprise us with a hasty announcement.
Frankly, I'd be glad to see anything a little different from the norm at this year's show. The usual yearly releases are fantastic, but we all love surprises! You just never know if something special is on the horizon. There's always the potential of discovering an entirely new sports series that could change the face of sports gaming forever. Whatever happens, it should be an exciting week.