Last year, Devolver Digital made a splash with their very … unique … E3 showing they had. If you haven’t seen it, you need to go here and watch it now. Don’t worry I’ll be back and able to explain a bit more about this year after that.
This year Devolver Digital has announced they are bringing their E3 show back—only this time with actual game reveals! Not only that, but the Devolver Digital Big Fancy Press Conference will also feature the return of Devolver Labs, the research and development arm of Devolver, which last year brought us Earliest Access (game creation from an idea!) and the throwing money at the screen payment method, as well as the numerous mishaps that were perhaps not mishaps.
That makes this article a bit different than the others in this series as we have two different targets to hit: what games are going to be shown and what industry targets will Devolver Digital line up to lampoon (and that’s after E3 itself as the conference itself tends to poke at that by merely existing).
The Obvious – It’d be more surprising if these didn’t show up
Serious Sam 4: Planet Badass
Devolver Digital has said this will be there, with their teaser trailer above being part of an increasing trend of developers teasing what will be at E3 with announcements beforehand. Serious Sam 4 has been in the works for a while, and Croteam and Devolver Digital have been working to help get the name back out there over the past year with the VR releases of the first 3 games, Serious Sam’s Bogus Detour being a new spinoff from another indie dev, and a standalone VR game in Serious Sam VR: The Last Hope. None of them are major works, but they each helped bring some additional attention to the IP that it needed, as it had been a while since Serious Sam had been heard from.
Expect this to be the headliner of the conference as far as games go.
Set to come out in Q2 2018 into Early Access, the Gamepires/Croteam collaboration on this survival prison riot title can really use the boost in stature that an E3 presentation will give it as a multiplayer game. The survival market can be cutthroat these days, with less of the roaming player base going from game to game. As a multiplayer game, Scum needs to hit a certain player base size to stabilize and get the 64-man servers full, so this is a great chance for the title to show off and demonstrate what makes it different.
A lot of Devolver Digital’s titles can be niche or unique titles that appeal to only a subsection of the audience, but The Messenger is one of those titles that they have with wider reaching appeal. Set to come out sometime in 2018, The Messenger promises to be a hit in the nostalgia area as an 8bit action platformer that evolves into a 16-bit Metroidvania, offering something to a lot of folks. That makes it a prime game to show off to the biggest crowd they can get, which is here.
This title from Eneme Entertainment is set for a 2018 release and would make sense to make a showing here. Eitr is an action RPG where you play as a shieldmaiden in a visually striking Norse adventure through nine realms connected by the great tree Yggdrasil.
My Friend Pedro: Blood Bullets Bananas
Another title set for a 2018 release, My Friend Pedro features acrobatic violent ballet combat that you share with your friend, the talking banana Pedro. Jump through windows in slow motion, bounce bullets with frying pans, and wreak havoc upon your enemies. If it’s not facing a delay, My Friend Pedro has a good chance of making an appearance.
Industry Target 1
The Battle Royale genre is an obvious target for Devolver Labs, and I think we’ll see an evolution of the ideas of instantly updating any game the way you want from last year with a brand new Battle Royalizer. With one quick tap of a button, you can turn any game into a Battle Royale—just like developers everywhere seem to be doing with all of their games!
The Maybes – High risk, possibly high reward
Sometimes Always Monsters
Announced back in 2016, the sequel to Always Sometimes Monsters was supposed to be released that year but has been much quieter since. It’s in a sort of soft-pre-release right now, so it’s possible that we might see it get a showing and re-announcement with a 2018 release if it is coming along well.
Fork Parker’s Crunch Out
Recently announced, this title was a collaborative effort between Devolver Digital and Mega Cat Studios starring the famous Devolver Digital financial officer. Beyond that making it possible for showing, the fact that it is an actual SNES game and one with all of Devolver Digital’s profits going to charity means that novelty may well earn it a spot at the E3 Press Conference.
Dennaton’s new game
One unannounced game that could make a big impact here is if the Hotline Miami team announces whatever it is they’ve been silently working on for two years. So far, there’s not been a peep about what it is, other than that it is emphatically not Hotline Miami 3. It’s going to be something different and given the pedigree of the creators will get a lot of attention, so announcing it here would make a big splash for both the developers and Devolver Digital, who were partially put on the map by Hotline Miami.
Industry Target 2
The Devolver Labs have almost certainly been working on how to make loot boxes more
obnoxious, ahem, profitable for developers at the urging of their master Fork Parker. They’ve been keeping these under wraps at their secret laboratories, but we think that after sending in our special miniaturized velociraptor to steal their plans through an air pipe we might have the information. The papers, largely shredded by velociraptor teeth, tell us of a new way of installing games that can provide players with the constant joy of loot boxes. To install a game you first have to assemble the right parts from your loot boxes, which will also contain wonderful elements like 1% off coupons on Devolver Digital games that expire in ten minutes and lumps of virtual coal. Then, at various intervals (level breaks are a prime point here), players will be encouraged to re-engage with the loot box system to unlock the next area. Additionally, they plan on having loot boxes unlock basic abilities like running and jumping so that there is a constant desire to open the next one to see what it will give you!
The Don’t Hold Your Breaths – Better grab your good luck charm
Talos Principle 2
While The Talos Principle 2 was announced in 2016, Croteam has said that they weren’t working on it in 2017 and likely wouldn’t do much on it until Serious Sam 4 was released. Since Serious Sam 4 is going to be highlighting this show and isn’t released yet, it’s extremely unlikely they’ll have anything to show for The Talos Principle 2.
Industry Target 3
The final showing I’m predicting here for Devolver Labs will be on Blockchain the 2018 Hottest Tech Item™. The Devolver Labs kept this inside their secret loot box lab deep beneath facilities that even our miniature velociraptors couldn’t break into. Instead, we relied on the ultimate hacking power to get this—swordfish—the password to almost everything when combined with the meaning of life 42. That still prompted a loot box pick, so we can’t say for sure if we didn’t just get a decoy, but we believe that their blockchain plan involves the Devolver Digital Mining Expedition, which will use their new cryptocurrency called ForkParkers, and will mine players computers while they play. This special device comes equipped with its own pickaxe so players can get in on the fun as well, and players will receive 5% of all they raise. Performance impacts or ways to spend ForkParkers have not been discussed.
What do you think of our predictions? Are there any that you agree or disagree with? Most importantly, do you think there are any Devolver Digital games that we might have missed?