As with every year, some titles we expect to be announced never take to the E3 stage. It's been a show of surprises none the less - Shenmue III and Final Fantasy VII Remake will attest to that - but there's some surefire appearances that just didn't happen. Cut due to time restraints? Not ready to make their debut? Or are they entering the realm of wish fulfilment? Let's discuss.
Resident Evil 7
We know this survival horror sequel, which is reportedly a soft reset of the series, is in active development. You'll be surprised to know that the last main entry into the franchise released three years ago, and while Revelations 2 was a fun episodic diversion, we'd have put good money that an announcement trailer would have been part of either publisher's press briefing. Given Sony's snagged the SFV exclusive, it wouldn't have been a massive leap to think they'd snagged Resident Evil - a name as much as Metal Gear Solid still associated with the PlayStation brand - as well. It's not like its without precedent.
Where is it? It's definitely coming, and sooner than later. Maybe it'll debut at the Gamescom conferences, but given a) only Microsoft, not Sony, are holding one b) Microsoft has stated it has more announcements coming and c) would want to take the sting out of losing Street Fighter...
Beyond Good & Evil 2
Edging towards vapourware given it's been seven years since the teaser trailer supposedly created with it's in-game engine, BG&E2's been the subject of multiple cancellation stories since. But Ubisoft's reconfirmed its commitment more than once, and there was some debate that this year's final Ubsioft reveal - consistently the best conference finisher of the entire E3 - would be Beyond Good & Evil 2. Except the company went for a new open-world Ghost Recon instead. Maybe for the best, as an E3 with Last Guardian, FFVII Remake, Shenmue III and BG&E2 announcements could have cracked the internet in half.
Where is it? An Ubisoft spokesperson was quick to contact us and offer a denial on a story this week that suggested creator Micheal Ancel was off the project, so something's still going on. The company know that handled right the sequel could be a critical success (a female lead who's an embedded war photographer and journalist in an evocative sci-fi sandbox world? A perfect fit with the growing diversity of games). But it needs to avoid the commercial failings of the original. The company won't reveal until they get it exactly right. We still expect that to within the year.
New Quantic Dream Title
There was three years between the release of Heavy Rain and Beyond: Two Souls. It's two years since Beyond: Two Souls released, two years since creator Quantic Dream announced it was working on a PS4 title, and two years since the studio's David Cage took to the stage at a Playstation event to showcase the very impressive Dark Sorcerer demo. But aside from the announcement of its previous two games getting a digital-only PS4 re-release, there hasn't been a whisper as to what the studio's been working on.
Where is it? You could speculate that crafting an entire game using the same awe-inspiring tech from the Dark Sorcerer demo is taking Quantic longer than expected, hence the no show or even sniff of something at this year's E3. But with the studio just just opening a Twitter account, maybe it's finally about to say something.
God of War
Returning to known first-party IP at E3 is a given. There's no need to drum up awareness, and the reappearance by successful franchises makes for an easy on-stage splash. Yet Sony's show was relatively devoid of series under its ownership (see also Gran Turismo 7 further down this list). That God of War III's getting a PS4 remaster in July in time for its tenth anniversary would be the prelude to its new-gen resurrection. But there was no mention of it at all.
Where is it> We imagine Sony's still taking a long, hard look as to what to do with God of War next. The previous system seller has lost some of its fire. While 2013's Ascension performed strongly, it seemed at an impasse as to how to evolve the gameplay or recapture the excitement of the first few titles. Questions that are currently without answer at Sony's studios. We don't expect it's finished for good, but neither do we expect to hear about the franchise beyond the long-gestating movie adaptation for some time.
Technically we got Super Mario Maker (cue the immediate wave of jokes on how Nintendo want us to make the games since they can't be bothered), and the company's Reggie Fils-Aime stated at the start of Nintendo's E3 Direct that new console NX talk (which we'd expect a new Mario to debut on) wasn't happening to next year. Yet with Zelda Wii U already confirmed to be skipping this year's show, we were looking for something big to headline or close the company's pre-recorded event. What we got was a basic-looking Star Fox Zero (the strengths of which, such as Platinum Games co-developing, were reserved until after the Direct) and a make-you-own-Mario (Nintendo does modding is cool, but it's a game we knew's been coming for a while).
Where is it? No doubt a new Mario is in internal R&D right now. Not an offshoot like Mario Tennis, or even a comfortable retread of pre-existing ideas such as the New. or 3D Land side-series. How do you top Mario World, Mario 64 and Galaxy 1&2? We'll likely have an answer come next year's Direct. And if Zelda does the cross-generational release again, we could potentially have it and a Mario title for NX's launch.
We're not under any illusions: the futuristic racer genre is in terminal decline. We're refusing to turn off life-support or start preparing for the wake just yet though. And that's even with all evidence pointing to the contrary: Sony dissolved Studio Liverpool after PS Vita launch title Wipeout 2048, and ex-staff setting up their own anti-grav Kickstarter project because "few publishers actually believe in AG Racing as a valid next-gen genre".
Where is it? Wipeout's day as a guaranteed seller at retail is over. A digital-only title though? PS3's Pure and Fury entries showed there's a feasible direction for the series to take. Sadly though, whether Sony's willing to spent the money (and set up a new team) to develop a PS4 successor is a question we know the answer to already.
Gran Turismo 7
Another of Sony's racing franchise, but one we know it hasn't abandoned; GT6 has been confirmed to be in development, and there was even a dedicated event to the series in the weeks before E3 kicked off. We know creator Kazunori Yamauchi and the team over at Polyphony Digital take their time though: GT5 was five years in development. While GT6 only took three, the results weren't fantastic. Studio and fans alike expect a better performance next time.
Where is it? In the garage. Yamauchi's pinned a release down to sometime in 2015/2016. While it was a no-show at this year's E3, we expect Gran Turismo 7 to take podium position at the company's event in 2016, potentially with a release for winter the same year.