Shortly before the start of Gamescom 2019, there is no longer a countdown here, but a short summary of the hottest news. Neither Rockstar nor Blizzard Entertainment (with the exception of merchandise) will find fans in Cologne - but this year's edition of the game fair is still worth a visit. Between 350.000 and 400.000 gamers will be cavorting in the halls of Koelnmesse until Saturday - and this Monday evening with the innovative opening show there will be a first foretaste of all the new products that fans will see or even be allowed to play in the next few days. We would also like to introduce you to our game highlights from Gamescom 2019 shortly before the start of the trade fair.


With the multitude of blockbuster titles and indie gems, fans have to make a preselection. If you just let yourself drift, you will see a lot of the great stand structures, but due to the long waiting times - at least for the highlights - you will rarely be able to put your hands on the gamepads yourself.
Two of our editors will introduce you to their personal game highlights and desired topics from Gamescom 2019.

The question of the questions: FIFA or Pro Evolution Soccer?

Gamescom is a trade fair for big names. Just not, but also. Publishers present the bestsellers of the coming months with multimedia fireworks. André cannot escape the attraction of the multi-million dollar productions.

One of the main questions at almost every Gamescom deals with the soccer classic: not Germany against Italy, but Electronics Arts FIFA against Konami's Pro Evolution Soccer. This year both titles promise high quality again. Since the demo was released, fans have already been able to convince themselves of the flow of the game in PES - and at Gamescom the new edition of FIFA will finally be played and then compared directly with the competitor. In terms of play, the two titles differ more in the details - when distinguishing between FIFA and PES, I would almost not speak of two games, but of variants. One is simulation-heavy, the other more action football. There is no such thing as “better”, just “different” - and that is more a matter of taste. In any case, I'm looking forward to a few trial rounds of FIFA 20.

As a gamer, you can scold Electronic Arts like a pipe sparrow, but the publisher giant still regularly has promising games in its portfolio. It's no big surprise that my second Gamescom highlight comes from EA, of all places: Star Wars - Jedi: Fallen Order.
As a Star Wars fan, this game is a must. After a rather dull shooting, Electronic Arts finally presents a story-heavy game for star warriors again. Yes, I would have wished for a Knights of the Old Republic III many months ago, but Jedi: Fallen Order is far better than another recycling measure of a standardized shooter framework - even if Fallen Order seems to be far less innovative than fans themselves have hoped. Nevertheless: I have to lend a hand on this game.

Finally indoor soccer again: FIFA 20 brings back action mode with "Volta". Image: EA

The hype about Cyberpunk 2077 doesn’t pass me by either. And Keanu Reeves' surprise appearance at E3 only increased the personal hype. Yes, the expectations of the new role-playing game from CD Projekt Red are gigantic, but I also cannot believe that the experienced developers will fail. Cyberpunk 2077 will be awesome, I'm sure. The development studio itself is convinced that it will surpass the successful Witcher series. This is probably not just empty marketing gossip, but rather damn serious. I don't care, Cyberpunk 2077 has more than just superhit potential in my eyes: You have to watch it!

The shooter for looters is back: Borderlands 3 will make its appearance at Gamescom 2019 - and I'll be there! Although the game will be officially released around three weeks after Gamescom, you can't get enough information and gameplay material to look for in advance. I don't expect too much new from the third part of the action series. Again there is shooting until the fingers glow and wildly looted. The whole thing is garnished with wonderful, weird characters and a lot of stupid sayings: perfect for over 30 hours of game story, which should arise in the context of the main campaign alone - and then there are the countless side missions.

The sci-fi role-playing game "The Outer Worlds" by Obsidian has a touch of retro charm. Image: Obsidian

The sci-fi role-playing game “The Outer Worlds” by Obsidian has a touch of retro charm. Image: Obsidian

At my last Gamescom highlight, the decision was difficult: Doom Eternal or The Outer Worlds? The new edition of the crashing riot shooter from Bethesda Softworks sounds promising - finally there is no reboot, but a real continuation. The developers at ID Software give everything to give the shooting new tactical depth and all sorts of surprises. The problem: Doom Eternal is also likely to be a pretty quick baller orgy and because my reflexes have clearly waned with age, I probably feel better at a leisurely game of The Outer Worlds. The role-playing game from Obsidian Entertainment ties in with old virtues. It works like a reconciliation for all fans of Fallout 76 who like this kind of game mechanics. The Outer Worlds is unlikely to be a hit, neither visually nor in terms of play, but there should be plenty of depth of play, good stories and multiple solutions: perfect for a successful sci-fi role-playing experience with a certain retro charm. And it's still there: the hope of big surprises.

Fans will know by tonight at the latest whether unannounced games will make it into the Gamescom presentations and what the announced world premieres have to do with them. That is when the new opening show takes place for the first time Gamescom: Opening Night Live instead - not only on site in Cologne, but also via stream. 

The hope for The Elder Scrolls 6 remains

Kay Tiedje vom has completely different games Spielpunkt-Team in mind. He hopes for the big surprises that an international trade fair of this size can always bring with it. One can sometimes dream. And what about Cyberpunk 2077? The title is of course on the list of game highlights. hype!

The chances that we will get tons of information about the Skyrim successor The Elder Scrolls 6 are about as high as that 1. FC Köln will win the championship in the coming Bundesliga season. Nonetheless, my hope is that we can learn a tiny bit more about this game. In an interview with IGN, Bethesda Game Director Todd Howard spoke about The Elder Scrolls 6 and Starfield - the new sci-fi RPG that is also in development. The sparse information from the interview can unfortunately be counted on one hand: the game is to be released for the next-gen platforms, they want to make the game just as long-lasting as Skyrim is, and that Bethesda should therefore devote a lot of time to development want to let. Nothing was reported about the content, maybe Todd Howard will reveal more at Gamescom. After the disappointment of Fallout 76, it would definitely be time for a great AAA game from Bethesda again and if that is in the form of Elder Scrolls 6, no fan would complain about it.

Is Age of Empires 4 the last hope for the now dead genre of real-time strategy games? When the game was announced two years ago, new hope was kindled in me. Optimism that makes me hope that AoE 4 will be a modern Age of Empires 2 - arguably one of the most famous and best real-time strategy games of all time. The mix of economy, base building and warfare is so well balanced in Age of Empires 2 that almost no game managed to implement these components as well as AoE 2 did back then. Microsoft has not yet given us a lot of information about the new game that is being developed by Relic - who also developed the Warhammer 40K strategy game series Dawn of War. It should probably span the entire timeline of Age of Empires 1-3 (antiquity - colonization of America) and play with many peoples from this time (Romans, Indians, Japanese - with samurais - Macedonians, etc.). Since the announcement took place at Gamescom 2017, the chance of receiving news here is much higher than from Bethesda, about their new games, after all two years have passed since the announcement and all fans of real-time strategy games urgently need the long-awaited oasis to Years of dry spell when it comes to good new releases in the genre.

The remake of the classic was also a success: Age of Empires - Definitive Edition. Image: Microsoft

The remake of the classic was also a success: Age of Empires - Definitive Edition. Image: Microsoft

I have to admit, to my shame, that I only played through the first part of The Last of Us last year. But everything my friends and the internet said about it was true, the game is awesome! The trailer at E3 2018 has already shown us a few minutes of gameplay material for The Last of Us 2 and OMG ... my jaw fell on my feet. The game looks fantastic, the trailer with its dark atmosphere and the brute action with the damn well done animations makes every The Last of Us fan cry with joy. Hopefully the story will be as great as in the first part and maybe you will learn more about the open ending from back then. Various websites are speculating that the game will be released in the 1st quarter of 2020. If this is really the case, my friends and family will probably not see me for a few months, because Cyberpunk 2077 will also be released in the 1st quarter of 2020 - on April 16, 2020.

Settlers 3 were the reason why I saved my pocket money for months and only wanted money for my birthday and Christmas a good 20 years ago, I really wanted to buy my first PC so I could play Siedler 3 extensively. Yeah, the game really tied me up for a damn long time. Unfortunately, after Siedler 4, the series has waned, the virtues and identifying features of the Siedler series have been forgotten and a lot has been changed so that the game looks as "modern" as possible and has "modern" game mechanics, which, along with many other series, doesn't have fans either fallen, after all, there was a reason we loved the "old" parts of settlers. Why am I suddenly so hot for the new settler? Quite simply because Volker Wertich - the inventor of the Siedler range - is back on board, has taken the helm and he is setting the course for a fresh start. The spirit of the series should finally return and good features of the "new" parts should be added. And the best thing about it: the game should be released in autumn 2019! I'm already looking forward to watching my little settlers scurrying around, to see how the buildings gradually grow and the geologist screams “Yippie!” When he has found raw materials.

Make your jaw drop: The first material for "The Last of Us 2" from Sony Interactive Entertainment. Image: Sony

Makes your jaw drop: The first material for “The Last of Us 2”. Image: Sony

CD project? A dystopian world in the near future? Lots of freedom like in the Cyberpunk 2020 Pen & Paper template? Thank you, you don't need to say anymore, you have me!
As a long-time shadowrun pen & paper player and master, your mouth watering can only make your mouth water. The two gameplay trailers already showed a lot and “holy moly”, how great does this world look !?

As usual in the cyberpunk genre, you can make many of your own decisions in the world and with the respective quests, and solve them in different ways. Do you like to be an invisible assassin and sneakily assassinate your opponents from behind? Is the shotgun and hand grenade à la Rambo your stylistic device? Would you rather hack your way through and bypass the guards by turning off lights and security systems? Or would you prefer the good old way of convincing people through conversations? There should be these and other possibilities to play through the campaign. It is not yet clear how long the total playing time will be, but probably no less than in Witcher 3. The hype is already huge for me. When we meet Keanu Reeves in Night City, a city full of life is presented to us and I can stay there like in my Shadowrun adventures and sink into all the hustle and bustle and the neon signs. If CD Projekt then delivers an equally good - or even better - story as in The Witcher 3, it will be role-playing paradise on earth.

The tip on the side: Those who can't do anything with well-known games and series of games are at least as good at home at Gamescom. In the steadily growing “Indie Village” there are countless innovative, creative or absurd games from independent developer studios or ambitious one-man companies. Everyone should take the time to stroll through the indie hall at Gamescom 2019.

Information on day and evening tickets is available at www.gamescom.de. You can also find more information about Gamescom at www.spielpunkt.net/gamescom.

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