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The 25 best games we saw during this year’s “Not E3” showcases

While 2022 was yet another year without an E3, game publishers big and small haven’t stopped releasing tons of hype-filled trailers during the usual summer promotional season. After sifting through Summer Game Fest and the Microsoft/Bethesda showcase, we’ve spent much of the week watching literally hundreds of trailers, as featured in the Future Games Show, IGN Expo, Wholesome Direct, Day of the Devs, the PC Gaming Show, and many others.
We’ve picked out 25 titles whose presentations stood out for one reason or another. Scroll through for a collection of titles we’ll be watching over the next year or so. And keep an eye out for hands-on impressions from our own Sam Machkovech, who sampled a handful of these games at a Summer Games Fest event earlier this week.

A Little to the Left

Platforms: Switch, PC, Mac, Android, iOS
Planned release: 2022
Links: Steam | (w/ demo) | Official website

Ostensibly a game for organization freaks, A Little to the Left asks players to tidy up by arranging books, game cartridges, spoons, lampshades, and more into nice, neat arrangements, all while a mischievous cat tries to mess things up again. As you move through the tidying, though, the basic organizing tasks morph into puzzles that are “a little more surreal,” according to the trailer. There’s also a “daily tidy delivery” for a quick hit of new organizational puzzles each day.

Agent 64: Spies Never Die

Platforms: PC
Planned release: 2022
Links: Steam (w/ demo)

This game isn’t subtle about being directly inspired by GoldenEye 007, right down to its blocky polygons and limited character animations. But this unlicensed spiritual sequel also sports obvious modern improvements like a smooth frame rate and a lack of fog, meaning it should look and play like your nostalgic memories of GoldenEye rather than, uh, the actual experience of playing N64 GoldEneye these days. The ability to “make and share your own campaigns” should also ensure plenty of new content well after release.

Bramble: The Mountain King

Platforms: PC, consoles
Planned release: 2023
Links: Steam | Twitter

Watching this trailer, I learned that Norse folktales can be way more intense than their American equivalents. Bramble is based on stories meant to scare children away from going too close to the water and drowning, and the example here definitely succeeded on this viewer. The short snippets of gameplay make it look like the game is a pretty standard exploration/platform title, but strong environmental and character design have us keeping our eyes out anyway.

Deceive Inc.

Platforms: PS5, Xbox Series S/X, PC
Planned release: “Coming soon”
Links: SteamTwitter | Alpha sign-up

This stylish competitive multiplayer spy game will see competitors disguising themselves to get a drop on their opponents and extract key objectives in a fun-looking twist on the capture-the-flag concept. The trailer reminds us of games like Deathloop and Spy Party—or even the underloved multiplayer portions of Assassin’s Creed games—in the very best ways.

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