I’ll admit that I’ve been on the Sony train for a long time but it’s for a reason. It’s hard to deny that they know what to bring to the table for their fans. Sony in fantastic form knocked it out of the park by delivering to fans exactly what we all care about: games. When I literally can’t leave my desk to make a drink for fear that I am going to miss content is a good hand that Sony played. Every last minute of their 75min press conference was filled with content. Not just any kind of content, but all content that spoke to me and what I want out of gaming. Complemented by a great orchestra to really get the ambiance of emotions in the people in the audience and the scale of the games being showcased. The PlayStation E3 Press Conference hit on all cylinders.
Sony wasted no time kicking things up to 10 with a much unexpected early reveal of Kratos with a beard and with a son. I was lead to believe that this was going to be The Last Guardian trailer, but lost it when I saw the familiar but much older face of an old friend from my younger days. Seems the rumors are true and this time around we are looking at a Norse setting and Greek is now done and over with. I’m glad to see that they did away with Greek and moved onto something else, the thought of Kratos taking on dragons alone was enough to push my hand to get this game immediately. We follow Kratos as he teaches his assumed son to hunt a deer, all while being attacked by enemies. Kratos dropped the blades he has always worn for a heavy ice axe with detailed frost damage on the environment and enemies. We see him protect his son as they go on the hunt, coming across minions but also a giant enemy in a battle of epic proportions. After all the battling is done, he helps his son kill the deer and doing his part as a father. As the camera pans away my eyes light up in excitement of the vast world before me, ready to be ravaged by the wrath of Kratos.
Moving forward we see a very loose trailer for a game that I’ll come back to, Days Gone. Open the next scene to see something that has been on the stage for far too long since it first graced the screen in 2009. The Last Guardian finally is coming to fruition and will be hitting shelves 10/25/16. With the length of time the game has been in development it only makes me wonder if the game will live up to the hype that it has created. Most games with a long shelf life before release have a hard time living up to the expectations of the consumer. I can only hope it will be just as good as the 2 other titles from Team Ico.
Since the reveal of Horizon Zero Dawn I’ve had nothing but questions about exactly what this game is and the crossover between prehistoric and robotic high end technology. Seemed like a good mix mash of concepts that hasn’t been done since the Turok games, and well old school Turok was great. What I got for a feel from the game is that you’re someone who is a scavenger and hunter. A strong woman who knows how to survive in the world and use resources to her advantage. I got a real sense of Lara Croft when I watched this gameplay. Seems to have a good combination of being resourceful but futuristic in a prehistoric setting. There’s some unknown robots running around, and your character hunts them down. One other fantastic feature, seems that your character can quickly reprogram enemies to use for her use. In this case we see her take a robot dear and use it as a mount to get to the objective quicker. There are some cool abilities we get to see during the fight like tethering the larger opponents to hold them in place and strike an attack. We also see different kind of arrows after being able to scan opponents for weaknesses. This game is like if Tomb Raider and Ark had a baby and I need this game in my life.
Haven’t heard much from Quantic Dream since 2013 with the less than stellar Beyond: Two Souls. The game was great in concept but it was no Heavy Rain for this guy. Nice to see them back at work with another title. This time you play a cyborg cop/detective that is trying to defuse a situation. When you fail to do that, the other cyborg jumps off the building failing your objective, which in Quantic Dream form would mean that the story would change based off of that. The trailer than shows us the many paths that you took to get to that point and the weight of every choice that you made. Knowing this studio a fine attention to detail was made to calculate and make players think about everything they do before reaching such a heated situation. This looks like a knock out of the park for Quantic Dream and I look forward to seeing more content as time goes on.
As is with most of the conferences so far we dove into the heart of VR gaming with a few unexpected surprises. First up was a very scary horror setting wandering around an abandoned house taken over by time and disgusting insects. We see a mysterious figure as the character explores, I already know that if I were to play this on VR I would surely freeze up and not be able to handle the fear of something jumping out at any moment. While exploring the house the character finds a VCR tape and puts it in the TV, because when you’re going to die at any moment you want to watch a tape instead of running for your life. It shows a very cryptic bunch of scenes and drops the title, Resident Evil VII fills the screen and I lose my mind. Seems the creators went backwards away from the old style action and are taking a page out of what RE4 was going to be with the more horror style that was scrapped than the final product that we received. While my constitution won’t be able to stomach a game this terrifying I am excited none the less. RE7 gets a release date of 1/24/17.
Upon launch of the Playstation VR there will be 50 games that will work with it, I assume new and old since there’s not a list out yet that I’m aware of. The PSVR is due out on 10/13/16 at an MSRP of $399 undercutting Oculus by $200 and with the Vive as the only other major player at the moment, this gives Sony a lot of momentum.
We get a look at some more VR games, starting with two people being stranded on a beautiful Mars looking planet. Looks to be FPS style and everything goes wrong, your characters are looking to survive and try to make it back and off the planet also reunite with their ship. All we get is a title for the moment, Farpoint is coming out for PSVR. Familiar sounds fill the ears of those who know and love the Star Wars franchise giving players the next best thing to lightsaber battles, X-Wing combat. In the few short moments the trailer is on the screen my inner kid imagines piloting an X-Wing taking down the Empire and tie fighters with my fellow squadron. The inner childhood excitement doesn’t stop there as my hair stands on end with a familiar voice of Mark Hamill playing a role I know all too well, The Joker. While we don’t get much details we see the words Batman, Arkham, VR,is this Arkham Asylum redone from a 1st person VR view? I look forward to finding out more about this as we get closer to October. Lastly for the VR montage we get a look at FFXV which shows scenes in a whole new look, seems the entire game can be played in 1st person view, giving you a whole new look and experience at playing this blockbuster title.
I say this to everyone who hit that thumbs down button on the YouTube reveal for Infinite Warfare, suck it haters. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare gets a big gameplay reveal and it looks spectacular. Space combat, Space dogfights, all of it looks great in every juicy minute of non-stop action. Call of Duty has never looked so good, and now that they have expanded the universe to, well the universe the franchise has never looked better and more exciting. First Call of Duty I am looking to purchase since Modern Warfare 2. Not just from the gun combat, but also hooking people in and crushing their face to see them fly off into the endless abyss of space, breaching enemy war crafts, and altering gravity to your advantage when a space lock is opened to attack enemies. Call of Duty hasn’t looked this impressive in years.
My childhood take another step to the front stage as Shawn Layden takes the stage with a semi familiar backdrop, song, and casting a shadow of a figure we in the early PS1 days remember. Crash Bandicoot is back with a remaster of Crash 1-3 coming to the PS4. No details of when this will be released, but what we do know is that Crash is coming to Skylanders first in Skylanders Imaginators on 10/14/16. Who knows when our old Sony launching franchise friend will come back into our lives, but I know that I want it as soon as possible. Jumping from there we take a look at Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens to reveal that the demo is out now. The game is slated to release 6/28/16.
One of the Gods of gaming graces the stage in her first appearance since leaving Konami. Hideo Kojima walks down the stage to receive a standing ovation from the crowd and I’m sure people sitting on their computer screen everywhere. He gives us a small window in the project that he is working on with Sony called Death Standing. Nothing major is revealed in this trailer and it does nothing more than create hype and buzz, as we see handprints form headed towards Norman Reedus laying naked on the ground. His body attached to a baby with a weird umbilical cord. He stands up to see his hands covered in an oil substance as baby hand prints start covering his legs. He stands to look up in the sky and see 5 figures floating off in the distance and a barren landscape in front of him. Nothing more is known about this game, but I’m sure all outlets will have eyes on Kojima now that he’s back in action.
Wrapping thing up we take a look at the new Insomniac title. Now that Sunset Overdrive has come and gone it’s time for something new. It’s been a long time since we gamers got a good Spider-Man game, but I could only let out a howling shout of excitement as I saw that Spider-Man may get the justice that is deserved from a franchise that has to offer. Insomniac’s version of Spider-Man looks fantastic from the reveal trailer, and I can’t wait to see more of this.
Sony comes almost full circle making a stop back near the beginning and giving fans a deeper look at Days Gone. As much as I would like to get this comparison out of my head I can’t stop but think of The Last of Us when I see this game. It has that certain feel to it that makes it stand out slightly different from the rest of the post-apocalyptic 3rd person shooters. The main character for some reason or another is looking for a character in the location that he’s at. You get a small idea of what you’re dealing with when a “zombie” lunges at you when you find your enemy. Upon killing him you start chasing him on the rooftops as the situation escalates quickly. An impressive amount of zombies fill the ground below as you and the man fight and roll off the roof. You leave him to die as the swarm of zombies swallows him up and you run for your life. What happens next is much unexpected, they burst out of the train car in a way I’ve never seen zombies do that before. The zombies looked more like a sea than individual zombies. The amount of them pouring like water at the player as he fires his AK raises the question, why even bother to shoot? He runs for his life, while zombies pour out of every crack, every opening with only their prey in mind. This is what a realistic zombie setting is like when I imagine the zombie apocalypse to be, a Day Z type of zombie swam so large that they just pile on top of one another and force their way through anything and everything. Our hero keeps running through the abandoned barn style buildings until he reaches the top. Trying to keep the swarm at bay at the never ending supply of zombies. He walks across a catwalk where he funnels them to try to stop them but there’s just too many. We end the gameplay with our hero stuck at the end of the walkway about to be consumed by all of the zombies. We cut away, and are greeted by Sony thanking us all for taking part in their PlayStation E3 Press Conference.
Out of all that has been showcased in the last two days, Sony delivered on what fans want. Non-stop action with very little words. Allowing gameplay to do all of the talking for the announcers. I still feel the order could have went different to end on a much more hyped note, but Sony still killed it. Sony did exactly what I conference should do, leave me wanting more and leave me wanting their product. Every game that was showcased was worth my time, and there was never a dull moment from my side of the computer screen.