Summer Game Fest 2022, like many of the games on display there, was ambitious experiment. In previous years, Summer Game Fest has been a simple livestream. This year, though, the event was a two-day spectacle, with hands-on opportunities for dozens of games. Tom’s Guide attended the event, and experienced some promising games firsthand.
Now that the event has wrapped up, we wanted to highlight five of our favorite games from the event. These range from big-budget titles with a ton of hype, to potential indie darlings that we just heard of for the first time. While we don’t know whether every single game on this list will be great, we do think they’re worth keeping an eye on.
Desta: The Memories Between
Desta: The Memories Between comes from the same team as Monument Valley, and its pedigree shows. Desta is also a gorgeous game with a rich color palette, an unconventional gameplay system and an emotional story. In this game, you play as Desta: a young person who tries to resolve their interpersonal issues each night as they dream. There, they play a ball game (think “dodgeball meets handball”) with allies and enemies based on people they know in real life. You can recruit characters with different abilities and get stronger over time, making this game an intriguing sports/RPG/social simulation. However the game turns out, it’s at least something different.
When Outriders debuted last year, it had its fans and detractors. But whatever you thought of the game, it did at least one thing extremely right: It provided a long, involved multiplayer looter-shooter without a single microtransaction. Outriders Worldslayer represents the game’s first major expansion, and the pitch is equally straightforward: pay $40 for a new area, a new story campaign and a new endgame progression system, then play as much as you want, for as long as you want, with full access to every item, system and location in the game. Outriders Worldslayer still features strong shooting mechanics and satisfying special abilities, so it’s worth a look if you enjoyed the base game.
Star Trek: Resurgence
My personal favorite game from Summer Game Fest, playing Star Trek: Resurgence is like watching a good episode of the show. This adventure game cast you as two Starfleet members aboard the U.S.S. Resolute: Carter Diaz, an enlisted engineer, and Jara Rydek, the ship’s new first officer. Conversation takes center stage here, as you’ll interact with a variety of characters, shaping their opinions of you along the way. You’ll also have to make tough moral choices, which gets to the heart of what Star Trek is all about. With incredible fidelity to the Star Trek setting and plenty of interesting narrative decisions to make, Star Trek: Resurgence is one of the more promising Trek titles in a while.
Street Fighter 6
Street Fighter has been around for more than 30 years, so fans should already have a good idea of what to expect from Street Fighter 6. You’ll control a variety of colorful combatants in one-on-one fights, including series mainstays such as Ryu and Chun-Li. You’ll memorize and execute flashy combos; you’ll compete against the computer to hone your skills, and other players for bragging rights. But while Street Fighter 6 should satisfy longtime fans with tight gameplay and gorgeous special effects, it may also entice newcomers with its optional “Modern” control scheme, which makes it easier to pull off special attacks.
Part Japanese-style RPG, part love letter to ‘90s professional wrestling, WrestleQuest is one of the stranger games we played at Summer Game Fest. It was also one of the most memorable. You play as two up-and-coming wrestlers, Randy Santos and Brink Logan, as they travel the world, honing their skills and developing their own unique performance styles. The twist is that the whole game takes place in an action figure toybox, which explains the larger-than-life fantasy elements, as well as the preponderance of real-life wrestlers who show up along the way. With gorgeous pixel-art graphics and surprisingly detailed turn-based combat, WrestleQuest could bring JRPG fans into wrestling – or wrestling fans into JRPGs.