Bethesda Returning For Second E3 Showcase, What Will Be Announced?

Bethesda Softworks announced Monday it is putting on a second E3 showcase for 2016 following last year’s successful event.

The announcement came via Bethesda’s Twitter account, which shared the following image featuring cartoon-ish versions of popular characters from varied franchises such as Fallout, The Elder Scrolls, Doom, and Dishonored. The E3 Showcase is scheduled to take place on Sunday, June 12 at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT.

Bethesda hosted its first E3 Showcase the Sunday before last year’s conference. Fallout 4 was the headline reveal and was joined by announcements for DOOM, Dishonored 2, and an expansion for The Elder Scrolls Online. A competitive card game based on the Elder Scrolls franchise along with some footage from Battlecry were also shown.

That leaves the obvious question of what Bethesda will announce for its E3 2016 Showcase. DOOM is planned for release by the end of June, so it seems unlikely much will be announced there beyond plans for post-release support. Fallout 4 DLC is definitely a possibility as Dawnguard, the first expansion for Skyrim, was released the June following the role-playing game’s November release.

Dishonored 2 is a gimme announcement for the E3 Showcase as well. Bethesda only featured a CGI trailer last year that provided details for the setting and premise of the sequel. The latest effort from Arkane Studios is expected to be released this year, which makes this year’s E3 an opportune time to show off gameplay footage and details.

Battlecry must be expected as well. The free-to-play multiplayer combat game is taking a different approach but faces potential tough competition similar titles such as Ubisoft’s For Honor.

Can Bethesda top the Fallout 4 reveal from E3 2015? (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Should there be any expectation of a new announcement for the Elder Scrolls franchise, though? Probably not beyond the collectible card game and Elder Scrolls Online. Todd Howard’s team has its hands full supporting and promoting Fallout 4 and its additional content right now, and Bethesda doesn’t feel the rush to make annual or bi-annual releases out of its games.

“It’s rare to have franchises like the ones we have and to have people joking about ‘when is Skyrim 2 coming out?'” Bethesda Vice President of PR and Marketing Pete Hines told the Telegraph after last year’s event. “The reason they say that is because generally speaking that’s what you’d be getting with another publisher in charge. They’d be spitting out a Skyrim 2 the year after or two years later. That’s just not how we view it. We’re not the sort of publisher that focusses on ‘what’s our 25 titles for 2015.'”

“We do smaller stuff, we don’t publish to scale, we try to publish to quality. Make sure everything we do is noteworthy. Our approach to that hasn’t differed. Here and there we might change our approach to how it’s presented but we’ve still stuck to who we are.”

Bethesda will obviously have some surprises in store from its other development studios on hand during the E3 2016 Showcase. The publisher still has The Evil Within studio Tango Gameworks and Wolfenstein developer MachineGames working on unannounced projects. Additionally, there is the long-simmering Prey 2 that was canceled last year.

Hines stated at the time, “It’s a franchise we still believe we can do something with — we just need to see what that something is.”

It’s still surprising to see Bethesda Softworks announce an E3 Showcase for 2016. Hines seemingly signaled last year that it was doubtful the event would return for consecutive years.

“I don’t know if we’ll do one next year. I don’t know if we’ll do one again. This year felt like the right time to do this kind of thing,” he said.

Looks like 2016 turned into the right time to do it again.

[Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images]