June 9 was the start of the Electronics Entertainment Expo (E3) 2018 show. Over the past few days we’ve already seen plenty of news and updates, but which announcements stand out from the rest and have the most potential impact on video game related stocks?
In terms of the console business, Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) announced that it is working on the next version of the Xbox. But the details were scant. The same goes for Sony Corp (ADR) (NYSE:SNE). Sony does not expect to launch a new version until a few years. Still, the announcement of these next-generation platforms indicates that both companies will still be in the console-making game for years to come and their gaming divisions will continue to have an impact on each of these stocks.
With that said, here’s a look at the most significant revelations at E3 2018, ranging from Electronic Arts Inc.’s (NASDAQ:EA) initial press conference to Ubisoft Entertainment SA’s (OTCMKTS:UBSFF) announcements from Monday.
E3 2018: EA’s Battlefield 5 & Anthem
EA’s Battlefield 5 is a multiplayer World War II title and it is expected to hit the markets on Oct. 19, on the Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and the PC. While it will certainly have quite a bit of action, the new twist is that there will be a “battle royale” mode. Investors should take note, as this a “response” from a well-established series to the hugely successful and relatively new Fortnite game.
EA also announced details of Bioware’s Anthem. This is a multi-player shooter game where the players wear cool mechanized suits and conducts combat in an open world. However, the release date is for February 2019, so the hype behind this one might not yet have a direct effect on EA stock just yet.
Finally, EA plans to launch an online subscription service for its PC games. The fee will be $15-per-month or $100-per-year, with the library at over 100 titles. The launch date will be sometime during the summer.
The subscription approach is becoming more popular in the gaming world, as seen with offerings like Microsoft’s Game Pass.
E3 2018: Microsoft’s Halo and Gear of War Games
Microsoft has been busy at E3 2018. The company announced that it has acquired four gaming studios, including Ninja Theory, Playground Games, Undead Labs and Compulsion Games, and it has created a new one, called “The Initiative.” It’s all a part of the push to get more talent. Only time will tell whether these studios produce quality content that helps drive the MSFT stock price up in the future.
As for new titles, Microsoft provided some hints of the next Halo title, Halo Infinite. Keep in mind that the last game in the series, Halo 5, came out three years ago. However, the details on Halo Infinite are still fairly vague.
There will also be three new titles for the incredibly popular Gears of War series. They include Gears Pop! (mobile), Gears Tactics (PC) and Gears 5 (Xbox).
E3 2018: Bethesda’s Fallout 76
Bethesda has gone all-in with this year’s E3 2018 — and much of it is on Fallout 76. This is a post-apocalyptic survival multi-player game. In fact, every player is a real person in this game.
Yet in this brave new world there are still nuclear weapons. So if you can find the codes, you can launch your own missiles. Or you may ultimately become a victim of such an attack!
The expected launch date for Fallout 76 is November 14, 2018. It will be available on the Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and the PC.
Besides Fallout 76, Bethesda has made some other announcements. Wolfenstein: Youngblood is expected to come out in 2019 and there will be a sequel to the DOOM franchise, called DOOM Eternal.
E3 2018: Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
The latest buzz for Ubisoft is undoubtedly related to Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, which is expected to launch on Oct. 5. This is an RPG thrill ride that goes back to Ancient Greece. Consider that Socrates is even part of the action.
Your goal in the game? To change history with the outcome of the Peloponnesian War. You can do this as either Alexios or Cassandra.
But Ubisoft also highlighted other upcoming titles, including Beyond Good and Evil 2, Trials Rising and Tom Clancy’s the Division 2, which even has an appearance of Abraham Lincoln.
E3 2018: Cyberpunk 2077
One of the games that is ginning up high-levels of buzz at the show is Cyberpunk 2077. After all, this is the first time there has been any visuals of the game in six years!
Poland-based developer CD Projekt Red is renowned for its obsessive level of quality. And based on the exciting trailer of Cyberpunk 2077, it’s easy to see why. The setting is a dystopian futurist city that is, as you might expect, very dangerous and its technologies have gone out of control.
However, despite all the hype, there is still no release date on the title.
E3 2018 has had an exciting start for gamers and investors, with many expected and unexpected title reveals and the announcement that next generation consoles are in development. We will keep a close eye over the next few days to see what other surprises companies come up with and provide a follow-up entry to this E3 2018 report.
Tom Taulli is the author of High-Profit IPO Strategies, All About Commodities and All About Short Selling. Follow him on Twitter at @ttaulli. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.