New Monkey Island and Tomb Raider games and E3 is CANCELLED

This week in gaming news

E3 Is Cancelled
This year’s E3 has gone from in-person to online-only to completely cancelled per a report from IGN. The games industry trade mega-show has suffered from pandemic-related issues in the last couple of years and this year is no different with the show being completely cancelled for the 2nd time in 3 years. The news comes less than two weeks after this year’s Game Developer Conference went ahead in-person despite online criticism. Geoff Keighley, front-man for The Game Awards, quickly stepped in after the news to promote the fact that his Summer Game Fest event will be going ahead this year.

Unreal Engine 5 Releases
Epic Games has finally released the much-anticipated Unreal Engine 5 to the public. The latest version of the popular game engine was announced more than 2 years ago and has seen use in some in-house projects like Fortnite and The Matrix Awakens, but this is the first time the toolkit has been available to developers and hobbyists at large. Epic promises that Unreal 5 comes with major technical improvements and new features ready for the next generation of consoles and game development. The engine ships with free access to resources such as Lyra, a multiplayer shooter game which developers can use as the base for their own projects, and a huge library of assets from The Matrix Awakens. Epic Game’s controversial royalty model will remain in place although Epic has announced alongside the release that they will waive their customary 5% royalty fees on the first US$1M in revenue that a game generates.

New Tomb Raider Game Coming
One of the first major games to be announced on Epic’s new Unreal Engine 5 is a brand new entry in the Tomb Raider franchise from developer Crystal Dynamics. Not much is known about the new game which will be the first since 2018’s Shadow of the Tomb Raider, but Crystal Dynamics are excited about the gameplay opportunities the new engine opens up. Other titles set to develop on Unreal Engine 5 include future installments in the Gears of War and The Witcher franchises.

New Monkey Island Announced For Later This Year
Another show-stopper sequel has just been announced, Return to Monkey Island, a brand new installment in the classic adventure game franchise, is set to release later this year. The game was initially announced on April Fools to the initial disappointment of much of the gaming world, but the first trailer has now released and confirmed that the game is for real. Not only that but development is being headed up by the creator of the original franchise, Ron Gilbert, with help of much of his original team from the LucasArts days under the banner of Gilbert’s studio Terrible Toybox. Gilbert has apparently been working on the game in secret for the last two years leading up to this announcement, which came as a shock to many fans of the series as it’s been nearly 13 years since the release of the last installment by Telltale Games.

Upcoming Releases
Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition [Switch] – April 7
Demeo: PC Edition [PC] – April 7
Green Hell VR [Quest] – April 7
Slipstream [PS5, XSX, PS4, XBO, Switch] – April 7

Dreamvibe [PC] – April 8

13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim [Switch] – April 12
Back 4 Blood: Tunnels of Terror DLC [PC, PS5, XSX, PS4, XBO] – April 12
B.I.O.T.A. [PC] – April 12
Planet Zoo: Wetlands Animal Pack DLC [PC] – April 12
Uragun [PC] – April 12