Another year, another E3 — and as is tradition, DualShockers hands out awards to what we (and our readers collectively) think are the best games at the show.
This year had some stiff competition, with three games nearly tying for Game of the Show. But, with plenty of arguing, debating, and compromising we have DualShockers’ official Best of E3 2017 Awards.
As usual, remember that the winners below reflect our personal feelings and opinions. It’s perfectly OK if you disagree, and have your own list. As a matter of fact, feel free to post it in the comments.
Now let’s get to the good stuff, starting with the most important award:
Reader’s Choice Game of the Show: Spider-Man
(Runner-Up: God of War)
Easily the most important award we give, the Reader’s Choice E3 2017 Game of the Show Award, goes to Spider-Man. Sure, the game didn’t have a physical presence at E3, but it is hard to argue with the extended gameplay trailer that Sony’s E3 2017 Press Conference ended with.
Whether you are a fan of the Spider-Man franchise or not, swinging on webs, taking down enemies, and exploring an open-world setting has never looked more vivid, fluid, or interesting than in Insomniac Games’ rendition of it. So your Spider-Sense better be tingling — this game will be be a wonder to behold when it releases in 2018 on PlayStation 4.
Game of the Show 2017: Middle-earth: Shadow of War
(Runner-Ups: God of War, Ni No Kuni II, Assassins Creed: Origins, Super Mario Odyssey)
Also Best Xbox One Game (Runner-Up: Sea of Thieves)
Also Best Third Party Game (Runner-Up: Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus)
Also Best Action/Adventure (Runner-Up: God of War)
While Spider-Man, God of War, and Super Mario Odyssey stole the hearts of all the DualShockers staff watching E3 remotely, Middle-earth: Shadow of War by Monolith Games dominated the minds of those on the show floor. With an understated presence within the press conferences, Shadow of War was nearly impossible to put down. Hell, even the staff that wasn’t a fan of the original game were awe-struck at what the sequel brings to the table.
With new abilities, new regions, and improvements across the board (from Stronghold Sieges to simple gameplay) Middle-earth: Shadow of War was the most understated, attention-grabbing game on the show floor. With no hesitation, Middle-earth: Shadow of War earns DualShockers E3 2017 Game of the Show Award.
Best PlayStation 4 Game: God of War
Also Best Sony-Published Game (Runner-Up: Spider-Man)
The game running neck-to-neck with Middle-earth, God of War followed up last year’s reveal with a strong trailer highlighting some new story, gameplay, and (most importantly) a release window. Sony Interactive Entertainment has some great games in the pipeline, but God of War is easily our most anticipated for PlayStation 4.
Best Nintendo Switch Game: Super Mario Odyssey
(Runner-Up: Xenoblade Chronicles 2)
Also Best Nintendo-Published Game (Runner-Up: Xenoblade Chronicles 2)
Also Best Trailer of E3 (Runner-Up: God of War)
I think all of us had our doubts earlier in 2017 when Super Mario Odyssey was revealed. Sure, the gameplay looked good in a trailer, but how does Mario in a real-life city translate?
The answer is “amazingly.” When DualShockers staff went hands-on with Super Mario Odyssey, the tight gameplay single-handedly convinced some writers to ditch the Pro Controller and return to the classic Joy-Con setup.
While Nintendo’s E3 2017 Showcase had a fair number of teases, confirmations, and upcoming projects, Super Mario Odyssey had the entire DualShockers team abuzz — even given the fact the game will be coming in a busy October. If Super Mario Odyssey can bring the innovation seen in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, the gaming community at large is in for a treat.
Best PC Game: LawBreakers
(Runner-up: Age of Empires: Definitive Edition)
Also Best Competitive Game (Runner-Up: Splatoon 2)
Class based shooters are all the rage today, but Lawbreakers comes with a bit of a twist. The game’s vertical combat and high speed find a way to set it apart from its competitors in the genre.
With a wide variety of characters to choose from each with their own unique abilities that will take you quite some time to master, Lawbreakers seems to have enough depth and variety to keep it from becoming stale. Plus, it’s just a blast to play — which is always a good thing.
Best Nintendo 3DS Game: Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology
(Runner-Up: Metroid: Samus Returns)
Atlus has gone out of their way to remake one of the most highly rated RPGs ever released, and make it even better. The developer has updated the entire game’s UI, update game’s visuals, and add new story content for returning players to enjoy.
Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology simply looks beautiful on the Nintendo 3DS, which made it easier to give it this award.
Best PlayStation Vita: Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony
The Danganronpa series will always float to the top of DualShockers’ awards list, and E3 2017 is no exception. With a relatively small PlayStation Vita offering at this year’s E3, Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony was the team’s open-and-shut choice for best Vita game.
Best Microsoft-Published Game: Sea of Thieves
(Runner-Up: Ori and the Will of the Wisps)
This isn’t the first time that Rare’s Sea of Thieves has made our Best of Show award list for a press conference. The open world, multiplayer pirate game may have some new-found competition, but that doesn’t understate just how great the game plays.
Competing against Ori and the Will of the Wisps and Crackdown 3, Sea of Thieves is the most cohesive and downright fun game published by Microsoft. With that said, hopefully this is the last E3 we see Sea of Thieves at, given the new launch window is Early 2018.
Favorite Indie Game: The Last Night
(Runner-Up: A Hat in Time)
If there was a Best Style (and I mean styyyylllleee) award for E3 2017: The Last Night would win, and grab second. Oozing some sweet, sweet Bladerunner vibes, the 2.5D cyberpunk cinematic adventure game from developer Odd Tales was a stand out during Microsoft’s press conference that featured multiple titles with bigger budgets, bigger teams, but not more panache (as the kids say).
Biggest Shocker: Beyond Good and Evil 2
(Runner-Up: Shadow of the Colossus)
The Biggest Shocker typically goes to the game, announcement or news that really floors the news team. And while there were rumors of Beyond Good and Evil 2 making it to E3, those rumors had been thoroughly quashed by the games director himself.
Yet, lo and behold. Come Ubisoft’s E3 2017 Press Conference Beyond Good and Evil 2 was on full display, looking entirely stunning. We still don’t know much about the game outside the announcement, but we will be holding our breath until we find out more.
Best RPG: Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana
(Runner-Up: Monster Hunter World)
The Ys series is one that every fan of RPGs should know about. With Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana a new generation of gamers will get the opportunity to learn about the series. The game’s expert execution of story and action RPG battle mechanics set in an enormous world allowed it to stand out against others in the genre category.
Best Shooter: Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus
You get to shoot nazis while you sit in a wheelchair. What else needs to be said to qualify it for Best Shooter?
Elaborating just a bit more, Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus is the much-needed sequel to bring back traditional, FPS controls and systems. With a strong alternate-history single-player focus and the production quality that Machine Games is famous for, October is an increasingly busy month for amazing games.
Best Fighting Game: Dragon Ball FighterZ
(Runner-Up: Dissidia Final Fantasy NT)
Dragon Ball FighterZ was one of the biggest surprises from the show. Arc System Works used the same pseudo-3D graphical techniques they use to craft the visuals in its other fighting games like Guilty Gear Xrd to truly bring this awesome anime to life.
Dragon Ball FighterZ moves at a much faster pace than most fighting games, but is still incredibly fun to play, making it the standout fighting game of E3.
Best Racing Game: Forza Motorsport 7
(Runner-Up: Gran Turismo Sport)
It’s hard not to be impressed visually year after year by the newest Forza title. After seeing the game running on the Xbox One X however, the bar has once again been raised. With controls that feel as great as they always do and a slew of new cars to test out, Forza 7 Motorsport once again looks to be one of the year’s best racing games.
Best Sports Game: Everybody’s Golf
(Runner-Up: FIFA Switch)
Also known as Hot Shots Golf in the west, Everybody’s Golf brings fun and skill to golf games while taking place in a colorful setting. The game also features mini-games and openworld elements for those who want to take a break from hitting that par 3. During E3 2017 we couldn’t help but fall in love with Everybody’s Golf and can’t wait to play more.
Best Strategy Game: Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle
(Runner-Up: Children of the Zodiarcs)
Despite the comments across the industry that Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle is just a kid-friendly version of XCOM, the game has something magical behind it. With the polish that accompanies Mario games to all the joy of murdering Rabbids in cold-blood, what isn’t to like? AS easily the most distinctive strategy game on the show floor, it is no wonder Mario + Rabidds Kingdom Battle swept up Best Strategy Game of E3.
Best VR Game: Moss
Moss was able to win our hearts and, while we could not see or hear what was going on around us in the room, we could feel a smile spread across my face on several occasions. The simple controls paired with the simple premise come together to form a meaningful and emotional experience that is fit for the young, old, or any players in between. Moss is without a doubt a shining example of what VR games should be, making it an easy win for Best VR Game at E3 2017.
Best Cooperative Game: Splatoon 2
(Runner-Up: Sea of Thieves)
I know what you’re thinking: how did Splatoon 2 win best co-op game? We were able to try out the sequel’s new horde-like mode called Salmon Run at the show and it might just be our new favorite thing in Splatoon as a whole. While at its most bare bones level it is just another horde mode, there’s something about combining the elements that already make Splatoon great with waves of enemies that turned into a ton of fun.
As someone who never really got into Splatoon’s multiplayer, I considered buying the game purely for this new cooperative mode. Make sure you have some friends come release next month as you’ll surely want to dive into this fantastic new game mode for yourself.