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Sony’s E3 conference has passed for another year and what have we learned? Well quite a lot actually. Sony certainly brought the surprises this year and really double down on the hardcore fanbase. The future looks good for 2016 and beyond, but what is the reason you should buy a PlayStation 4 right now? Let’s recap the whole thing shall we.
Sony came out all guns blazing with the reintroduction of The Last Guardian. Most surprisingly the game looked very similar to when we last saw it many years ago and looked like it’s shaping up nicely. Most shocking to me however was that the game was given a vague 2016 date which actually made me laugh. I really thought next time we see it, it would be ready for release, but for them to show it a still be at least another year away? I personally think they should have waited to pull the trigger on this one. Last thing they wanna do is delay the game again.
After that was Guerrilla Games’ new IP titled Horizon Zero Dawn. The leaks were real and what a way to announce a game. The gameplay looked very polished and complete, and most importantly looked super fun to play. No release date given so I’ll assume Fall 2016. The only disappointment here is that it’s not ready this year.
Next up was a reveal trailer for the next Hitman game; simply titled Hitman and launching December 8th this year. As I huge Hitman fan I’m ready for this game and will buy it regardless but just a CG trailer is nothing to get excited about. I’m guessing we will see gameplay at Square Enix’s conference soon. Oh, and the beta will arrive first on PlayStation (not the last time we will hear that phrase either).
Street Fighter V was shown with new characters that have already leaked were confirmed. A beta is launching on July 23rd exclusive to PS4. We got a live demo of No Man’s Sky which was similar to everything else we have seen so far. Exploring a random planet, do some scanning and then leaving. Still have no idea what the main point of this game is and most shocking part was we didn’t even get a final release date. All we got was “soon.” With how barren the rest of the year is Sony better pray this game isn’t pushed to 2016.
Media Molecule’s new game (at least I think it is a game) is called Dreams. You create and shape each other’s dreams? I don’t even know at this point. I respect what Media Molecule do but this isn’t something I will ever play.
The future of Destiny takes shape in the form of a new expansion entitled The Taken King which launches September 15th this year. It will contain exclusive content on PlayStation platforms yet again which shows Sony and Activision must be happy with the results of their initial deal. PS4 is the lead Destiny platform and this is big for Sony as this game will be around for years and years to come. Also the expansion looks great and I’ll be buying it day one.
We then saw a new game called World of Final Fantasy scheduled for PS4 and Vita in 2016. And have no idea what type of game this is but it sure looked cute. Next up was a huge announcement in the form of a remake of Final Fantasy VII. No release date but we can “play it first on PlayStation 4,” whatever that means.
Then rounding out the trifecta of unbelievable announcements was the launch of a Kickstarter for Shenmue 3. Sony made it very clear this wasn’t their own Kickstarter, but merely launching on their stage. It has already hit its goal of $2 million so I guess Shenmue 3 is finally happening. Launching Kickstarters via E3 press conferences is definitely a first also.
Batman Arkham Knight was shown with massive spoilers for Arkham City if you didn’t beat it. Scarecrow missions will be exclusive for PS4 and were shown off and looked super weird in my opinion. Certainly this wasn’t the time to show off weird side content of a game that’s out next week.
Morpheus was shown next which isn’t surprising, but what is surprising is it was barely shown at all. Less than three minutes in fact. And what we saw was super underwhelming. This says a lot to me that maybe have changed their tune on VR and maybe won’t be going all in like other companies are and this is probably a good thing. There’s plenty of VR options coming that Sony pulling out of the race isn’t the end of the world.
PlayStation Vue launched in the US which lets you watch loads of different networks via your PS4. Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 was finally shown after it’s absence in Microsoft’s conference earlier. DLC will come to PlayStation first just like it used to on Xbox. However Call of Duty isn’t what it once was and it says a lot about the future of both companies that this interests Sony more than Microsoft in 2015.
Disney Infinity 3.0 was shown, it has Star Wars characters. Of course it does. There’s also a bunch of exclusive Star Wars content on PlayStation platforms. Battlefront gameplay was next and it looks stunning. Really beautiful looking game and a real shame it’s multiplayer only.
And we end with a live demo of Uncharted 4. It looks like a phenomenal Uncharted game but we already knew that. It’s clearly the biggest and best game Sony has to offer right now it’s just annoying that it unfortunately had to be delayed. Regardless of that when it does come out it promises to be the biggest and best Uncharted yet which says a lot.
And there we have it. It was a very hard press conference to judge in my opinion. 2015 has almost zero exclusive games as Sony have completely doubled down on exclusive content in third party games. So while the immediate future is solid it isn’t anything to shout about. And compare it with Xbox’s big exclusive games this fall there is no comparison.
But beyond that, 2016 and beyond is looking fantastic. Uncharted 4 and Horizon Zero Dawn are the two big first party exclusives and then there’s the complete fan service that was achieved with the announcements today. The Last Guardian finally arriving (hopefully), Final Fantasy VII remade and helping the production of Shenmue 3. Sony certainly look to please the hardcore with these announcements while tying up exclusive content for third party games to win over the casual crowd. It seems like a very viable strategy even if the lack of proper exclusives in the near future is a real shame.