Gamescom is Europe's answer to E3. Held annually in Germany, it is a similarly huge event for gamers, with the biggest forthcoming titles on display for press, trade visitors and the public alike.
This year's event is now underway, so here are the games and hardware we have seen from multiple companies so far.
- Best upcoming PS4 games to look forward to
- Best upcoming Xbox One games to look forward to
- Best upcoming Nintendo Switch games to look forward to
- Best upcoming PC games to look forward to
What is Gamescom and when does it run until?
Gamescom started in 2009 and is held annually at the Koelnmesse convention centre in Cologne, Germany. It generally runs in mid to late-August.
This year it started with a press and trade-only day. However, the public can now enter with the main show running from 21 - 24 August.
Here are the show opening times for each day:
- Tuesday 20 August 2019: 7am to 8pm CEST (press and trade visitors only)
- Wednesday 21 August 2019: 9am (press and trade), 10am (public) to 8pm CEST
- Thursday 22 August 2019: 9am (press and trade), 10am (public) to 8pm CEST
- Friday 23 August 2019: 9am to 8pm CEST
- Saturday 24 August 2019: 9am to 8pm CEST
Games 2019 press conferences
While several companies traditionally held press conferences and showcases at former Gamescoms, they were few and far between this year.
Xbox hosted a special Xbox Live from Cologne presentation on the Monday prior to the show opening. It didn't hold a press conference as such. You can watch the special Inside Xbox show again below.
EA abstained from hosting a press conference this year. As did PlayStation and Nintendo.
Another company to stream an online announcement video rather than an actual Gamescom press conference was Google. Its second episode of Stadia Connect unveiled some of the key titles coming to the cloud gaming platform. It too is available to watch below.
The biggest livestream to have appeared this year, however, came from the show organiser itself. Gamescom: Opening Night Live was a jam-packed announcement stream hosted by The Game Awards' Geoff Keighley and included a look at a star-studded games line-up, including titles from 2K, Activision, Bandai Namco, Bungie, Capcom, EA, Epic Games, Google Stadia, Koch Media/Deep Silver, PlayStation, Private Division, Sega, Square Enix, THQ Nordic, Ubisoft and Xbox Game Studios.
There was also an appearance by Hideo Kojima, who presented new footage of the PS4 exclusive Death Stranding.
You can rerun it below.
Gamescom 2019: The highlights
We are currently making our way around the show, going hands-on or seeing some of the biggest games and devices on display. These are our particular highlights to date and we'll be adding more games and companies regularly.
Asus ROG at Gamescom 2019
Asus held a dedicated Republic of Gamers event on the Monday evening before the show itself. It unveiled a few new products in the gaming monitor and motherboard areas. Plus, the Asus ROG Chakram gaming mouse that includes a small analogue thumbstick on the side that can be used for flying or driving sections in games, for example.
However, for us, it's most intriguing announcement was the Asus ROG Strix Go 2.4, a mobile gaming headset designed specifically for phones, tablets and the Nintendo Switch. Not only does it have decent audio tech inside, it comes with a USB-C dongle, which plugs into your mobile device and therefore ensures a more stable, lower latency connection to the wireless headset that through Bluetooth.
Bandai Namco at Gamescom 2019
Bandai Namco has several games on its show floor booth, including the spiritual sequel to Until Dawn, Man of Medan. Also confirmed are Dragon Ball - Kakarot, Code Vein and RAD.
We've played demos of each of them, so will be bringing you more on the games soon.
As is now the norm, Cyberpunk 2077 has a good shout as having stolen the show and the one-hour demo we sat through at Gamescom reinforced why; it is not only looking superb, the gameplay we've seen so far just makes us even more excited. Not only do you get a digital ghost of Keanu Reeves effing and jeffing guidance when you need it, the stunning, dynamic game world and depth of character customisation could well ensure that your gameplay experience is tailored just for you.
What's more, it was revealed at this Gamescom that Cyberpunk 2077 will be coming to Google Stadia, as well as the previously announced PS4, Xbox One and PC versions. It will be later in 2020, however, with the conventional editions hitting stores first, on 16 April next year.
PlayStation at Gamescom 2019
PlayStation no longer hosts any specific media events at Gamescom, but it still has a massive booth on the show floor.
Death Stranding is its biggest title this year, but the PS stand was the only place for the public to get hands-on time with Call of Duty: Modern Warfare.
In terms of secret, special stuff from PlayStation, there really wasn't much. It doesn't tend to use the show for new announcements these days.
Nintendo at Gamescom 2019
Nintendo has a whole raft of Switch games available to play on its show booth.
These include Luigi's Mansion 3, The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening, Astral Chain, the Switch version of The Witcher III: The Wild Hunt, and Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
There will also be a livestream of the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate invitational tournament on the afternoon of 22 August - shown on the Nintendo UK YouTube channel.
Xbox at Gamescom 2019
As well as a massive show floor booth, Xbox is hosting an off-site Open Doors event at a theatre up the road. It is free to enter and gives visitors the chance to participate in tournaments, view panel discussions and much more.
Its biggest game this year is undoubtedly Gears 5 and, while there is gameplay available on the show floor, we also got to see the new Horde mode in action behind closed doors. Regular Gears players will know much of what to expect from the co-op survival mode, but the biggest addition this year is the ability to play with different characters, each with their own unique abilities. Even Sarah Connor from Terminator: Dark Fate.
But, perhaps our favourite thing we saw at Xbox was the second edition of the Xbox Elite Controller. With plenty of extra flip switches and modes, Xbox gamers can really fine tune their gaming experiences. It's pricey but feels great in the hand and we can't wait to get one in for a full review.
Ubisoft at Gamescom 2019
Ubisoft is at Gamescom, of course, and is showing more on Ghost Recon: Breakpoint and Watch Dogs Legion, along with DLC of some other existing titles.
We will be going hands-on with the former two shortly and will let you know our impressions soon.
In terms of other new games, etc, many of the bigger announcements are expected for the weekend as it will be running its own community event in Birmingham, UK, across 24-25 August.
Other companies at Gamescom 2019
Here are the other big brands at Gamescom this year:
- Asus ROG
- CD Projekt Red
- Electronic Arts
- Epic Games
- Focus Home Interactive
- Koch Media
- Square Enix
- THQ Nordic
- Turtle Beach