Sony had quite a few interesting PS4 titles to showcase this year at E3, as well as a nice mix of new properties and highly anticipated sequels. Here’s what we saw at Sony’s E3 showcase this year.
GOD OF WAR
A ten minute gameplay trailer for the upcoming God of War semi-reboot was shown, which features Kratos taking his talents to Scandanavia as the series reboots within Norse mythology. Kratos has a son, with whom he has a relationship that looks to be a combination of Lee and Clementine from The Walking Dead and an overcompetitive Little League dad. We get to see Kratos, now sporting a beard, defeat a troll, some skeleton fire monsters, and teach his young son how to hunt deer. No release date was announced, but this looks pretty spiffy.
We saw a trailer and demo of Days Gone, an open-world zombie thriller from Sony Bend, which normally specializes in Playstation Vita titles but jumps onto the PS4 with this one. The protagonist, a biker gang member who arrives at what appears to be a lumber mill only to find hordes of “freakers”, seems like he may be a little bit on-the-nose as a character, but the setting, which is most likely the High Desert of Central Oregon based on the studio’s location, is lovingly recreated, and the mechanics for the game make it look like it has potential. If Bend keeps in mind that what makes most zombie properties successful is the characters, and not the gameplay, this could be a pretty good game.
THE LAST GUARDIAN
A more traditional trailer was shown for The Last Guardian, which FINALLY has a release date after years and years of production delays — October 25th! Hooray! The art style is interesting, incorporating some Wind Waker-esque cel shading in with more traditional 3D graphics, but the trailer made the game look like a potentially touching and enjoyable experience.
HORIZON ZERO DAWN
Guerilla Games’ first RPG is an open world action game in which big machines rule the world, or something. Our protagonist (a woman!) is warned not to cross a valley due to “corrupted machines”, but she does it anyway. The game seems to be partially reliant on a crafting system that uses parts picked up from the dead machines. The game’s setting is post-apoc, but it has an aesthetic that borrows liberally from fantasy, and your protagonist fights using some sort of robotic bow. The combination of fantasy and sci-fi seems to be the game’s bread and butter. There’s also a “type” element to the giant machines that seems to be an integral part of combat. Horizon Zero Dawn looks great, seems fun to play, and definitely is one of the more unique things I’ve seen at E3.
DETROIT: BECOME HUMAN
This game from Quantic Dream looks like it’s more or less L.A. Noire, but with more robots. You play as Connor, an android cop. It’s not clear whether the scene we saw, in which Connor must attempt to save a kidnapped human girl from death, is part of the main conflict, but it appears that the game is built around your decision making as Connor. It also plays into the ethics of synthetic humans, which seems to be having a pop culture moment recently, and introduces a potential analog for racism through the androids. There seem to be several possible outcomes to each story, and this seems like it is important to the plot. It could be interesting, but this trailer was awfully on the nose about the game’s themes, so we’ll see with this one.
RESIDENT EVIL 7
The classic horror franchise is back! First person cameras! Scary houses! Scary faces popping up out of nowhere! They’re throwing a lot of eggs in the VR basket with this title, and Resident Evil seems like just as good as any franchise to lead into VR with. The game will be fully playable, front to back, in VR. This game also seems to be something of a spiritual reboot, going back to basics after RE6 was criticized by fans. We also get a release date: January 24, 2017. The demo of the game will also be fully playable in VR for those who want to know whether they can handle it ahead of time.
Speaking of VR, there’s a whole mess of news on that front!
- Playstation VR will be released on October 13 in the United States at a price point of $400.
- 50 games will be available at launch, including old and new.
- Farpoint, a space exploration shooter, is a game that will be fully playable in VR at launch.
- Star Wars Battlefront will feature a VR mission that puts the player inside an X-Wing.
- Batman: Arkham VR will be released at launch for PSVR.
- Final Fantasy XV will also receive VR functionality upon its release on September 30th.
CALL OF DUTY: INFINITE WARFARE
Yeah, just watch the trailer.
Crash Bandicoot, Crash 2, and Crash: Warped will all receive full remasters on PS4! In addition, the character will appear in Skylanders: Imaginators, which will be released in October 14th. The game will allow players to create and play with their own Skylanders.
LEGO STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS
We saw a trailer for Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which used dialogue from the actual movie. And for my money, there is no way that Kylo Ren and the Lego games’ sense of humor aren’t a winning combination. The game will be released on June 28th, and a demo is available now.
HIDEO KOJIMA/DEATH STRANDING
When Hideo Kojima entered to rapturous applause and said “I’m back!”, you knew it was a special moment. Sure enough, we got a glimpse at Kojima’s first independent studio game, Death Stranding, which features Walking Dead actor Norman Reedus waking up nude on a beach with a newborn baby and a cross-shaped scar in his stomach. The presence of Reedus, as well as the child, who appears to attached to him by an umbilical cord, suggests a possible connection to Kojima’s famous demo for the cancelled Silent Hills game. To see Kojima’s brief speech and the trailer, skip to 0:56.
A game featuring Spiderman will be released by Insomniac Games. We saw a cinematic trailer that seems to promise an interactive environment and lots of climbing and jumping, but little other information was revealed.