I was quite disappointed by PlayStation’s E3 conference this year. There was little to no indie game presence, very few new game announcements and a focus instead on longer trailers for already announced AAA games. I was a bit worried after E3 that PlayStation was losing their way after 4 years of a fairly strong run with the PS4. I found myself gravitating towards Xbox for their strong indie support with gems like Cuphead, Below and loads of other ID@Xbox games as well as amazing support for fan requests like backwards compatibility, System UI upgrades and greater customization options. But today I was reminded why I love PlayStation so goddamn much.
PlayStation came out swinging today with a strong lineup of new indie games, great trailers for exclusives like God of War and The Last of Us Part II. There was a lot to get excited about in today’s conference, something for everyone. And today after 4 years of silence we finally got to see what Sucker Punch Productions has been working on since inFAMOUS First Light and holy hell am I excited. Here’s everything you might have missed from PlayStation’s Paris games week conference!
Guacamelee! 2 Announced
Drinkbox Studios’ exceptional Mexican Metroidvania beat ‘em up was an absolute delight and struck a chord with many players back in 2013, myself included. PlayStation announced the sequel simply titled Guacamelee! 2 in a delightful trailer. Juan is back as the main protagonist and all of the tight platforming combat appears to be back as well. The luchador wrestling moves blended with traditional beat ‘em up staples to deliver a refined and polished combat system for Guacamelee! 2, which is coming to PS4 soon-ish? Check out the trailer below!
The Hong Kong Massacre Announced
The first game from two-man indie studio VRESKI, The Hong Kong Massacre appears to be a top-down twin-stick shooter set in a hyper-stylized, neon-infused Hong Kong where an escalating drug war is driving a detective to some drastic John Woo style firefights. Coming to PS4 in 2018 no other information was given other than this trailer.
The Garden Betweens Announced
This new puzzler has the player control a pair of friends, Arina and Frendt, as they make their way through magical gardens built of everyday objects twisted into weird and fantastical settings. The player will be able to rewind time, a core mechanic to solving the puzzles littered throughout the gardens. The game will focus on the relationship between this two friends and “reveal a story about friendship, childhood and growing up.” It’s coming to PC and PS4 in Q3 2018. Check out the pretty trailer below!
LocoRoco 2 Remastered Dated
After a load of fan love for Loco Roco Remastered earlier this year it just makes sense to release Loco Roco 2 on PS4 with trophies and 4K resolution. You can pre-order now and download this joyful PS2 classic to your PS4 on December 9th, 2017.
The Sims 4 Coming to PS4 with Expansions
The ever-popular life simulator without the boring bits will be making its way onto PS4 on November 17th, 2017 and will come with all the expansions as well as all future free PC updates. The menu UI has been updated to make it much more friendly to use with a controller.
Tennis World Tour Coming Announced
The only Tennis game releasing on PS4 anytime soon, Tennis World Tour is a realistic tennis simulation launching in Spring 2018 for all those Tennis enthusiasts who own a PS4.
Two New PSVR Games Announced
Megalith is a new multiplayer hero shooter from Disruptive games, an indie studio comprised of many former Insomniac Games employees. The final game will feature full locomotion gameplay but there was only a cinematic tease in the trailer.
Next up is Bow to Blood, a competitive flying ship battle game where players control their flying ship from a command centre similar to Star Trek Bridge Crew. The trailer was a little underwhelming, but you can judge for yourself.
Two New PSVR Ports Announced
Ultrawings VR and Sprint Vector have been on Steam for a while and they’ll soon be making their way to PSVR.
Ultrawings VR is a flight simulation very reminiscent of Wii Sports Resort’s flying games but in first-person. While it looks like it could be a fun and less serious flight sim the trailer was quite underwhelming and looked like something a highschooler could make.
Sprint Vector was a little more promising, it’s a racing game where different coloured neon characters use abilities and hardcore parkour to maneuver obstacle courses at lightning speeds to beat each other to the finish line.
Both games are coming to PSVR in 2018.
PSVR Exclusive Moss Release Date Announced
Polyarch’s third person adventure game Moss was revealed at E3 2017 and looked like a very pretty experience, but didn’t offer much in terms of gameplay other than some basic platforming we’ve seen from other VR games like Lucky’s Tale. Players control the adorable mouse hero Quill with the analog stick of the Dualshock 4 controller but interact with the puzzles using the controller’s gyro controls, allowing the player to manipulate objects in the world like they’re in the player’s hands.
Moss releases exclusively for PS4 in February 2018.
Starchild Announced for PSVR
Described by the developers as a “cinematic platforming adventure game” there’s little other information available. Coming soon to PSVR.
Resident Evil VII Biohazard New Content and Gold Edition Announced
A new free update called Not A Hero is coming soon to Capcom’s incredibly popular first-person horror game. It was also announced a Gold Edition of the game will include all the DLC and be available for purchase on December 12, 2017.
New PSVR Games Dead Hungry and Stifled Available Now
What if you were a cook in a burger stand a theme park overrun by zombies and the only way to stop the zombies from eating you was to cook them burgers and fries? That’s essentially Dead Hungry, which you can try out now on your PSVR.
A tonally different game, Stifled puts the player in an entirely black world where the only way the can see where they’re going is through making sounds the give them an outline of the world around them via echolocation. But the catch is when you make noise enemies can find you more easily. “Dare to make a sound” as the game creepily asks?
League of War: VR Arena Announced for PSVR
I’m not entirely sure why this game is in VR, as it’s meant to be played with one player wearing the headset and another playing with a Dualshock 4 and their T.V. It’s essentially a real-time tower defence game with various arenas, except there is only one short lane players compete over. No release date at the moment, and not much interest from me.
Final Fantasy XV VR Game and DLC Dated
Monster of the Deep: Final Fantasy XV is a VR fishing game set in the FFXV world where players control a customized character living in the camp from FFXV who gets to fish! Coming to PSVR on November 21, 2017.
Final Fantasy XV: Episode Ignus is a new story DLC focusing on everyone’s #bestboy from FFXV: Ignis Scientia. The DLC has no price point yet but will launch on December 13th, 2017.
Rhythm Game Invector Trailer Shown
Revealed at Paris Games Week two years ago, Invector is an upcoming rhythm game in the vain of Amplitude and Frequency coming soon to PS4.
Oure Announced and Available Now
Pronounced “O-ray”, Oure is a beautiful looking exploration adventure game available now on the PlayStation Store. Compared visually to Journey, you can download Oure for $26.99 CDN.
Spelunky 2 Announced
A sequel to mossmouth’s incredibly popular 2D platformer was announced coming to PS4 sometime soon! Players are now the Spelunker’s child, who with her dog are setting out to make their own adventures. Check out the adorable trailer below!
Ghosts of Tsushima Announced
Finally, we got to see what Sucker Punch Productions have been working on since inFamous First Light released in 2014. Sucker Punch is responsible for some of my favourite gaming experiences and my favourite game of all time, Sly Cooper and the Thievius Racoonus. Ghosts of Tsushima is an action, stealth adventure game. returning to the stealth ninja-ness of Sly Cooper but now in a hyper-realistic, sprawling open world medieval Japan. Set during the Mongol invasion of Tsushima Island circa 1274 AD, players control Jin (voiced by Daisuke Tsuji) who needs to defend his home from the invading forces led by a man game director Nate Fox describes as an “uncomfortably reasonable killer.” In Ghosts of Tsushima, players will be “fighting back invaders in feudal Japan, mastering the katana and building your legend as ‘the Ghost’” (Source).
There’s no release date as of yet. Check out the glorious trailer below:
Concrete Genie Announced
The next game from Sony-owned studio Pixelopous, developers of Entwined, comes Concrete Genie. In this game, players control Ash, a little boy in the polluted, abandoned fishing town of Denska. Ash has the ability to create living street art on the walls of the alleys that run through his abandoned town and that living art makes his lifeless depressing, as Ash deals with bullies constantly. He creates landscapes and creatures to keep him company, this painting is done with the Dualshock 4’s motion control, similar to spray painting in inFamous Second Son.
Concrete Genie is coming exclusively to PS4 in 2018.
New PlayLink Game Erica Announced
The next game part of PlayStation’s mobile initiative has been revealed. It’s a psychological thriller where players interact with a live action story. The thrilling trailer showcases basic touch controls and branching story options. Check it out below!
PSVR Sizzle Reel Showcasing Upcoming Releases
Several upcoming PSVR games were shown in a sizzle reel. Games include like: Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown, Resident Evil VII: Biohazard Gold Edition, Rec Room, Moss, Apex Construct, Bow to Blood, League of War: VR Arena, Stifled, Sprint Vector, Smash Hit Plunder, Star Child, Transference, Ultra Wings VR, Dead Hungry and Eden Tomorrow.
Blood & Truth Announced for PSVR
This game appears to be a fully fleshed out version of Studio London’s The London Heist, a minigame in the PSVR launch title PSVR Worlds. In this game players experience a full on action game like the The London Heist spread across many more levels and explosive set pieces. There appears to be no locomotive control, so expect to be stationary or on rails. Blood & Truth releases for PSVR in 2018.
Far Cry 5 Coop Trailer
Coop has been a main staple of the Far Cry series since Far Cry 3 and Far Cry 5 appears to be expanding on this feature allowing players to tackle every mission cooperatively. The trailer was cheesy, set to The Turtles Happy Together and showing generic gamertags teaming up to murder stuff and competing in races. Far Cry 5 launches on PS4, Xbox One and PC on February 27th, 2018.
Destiny 2 Expansion 1: Curse of Osiris Trailer
While not exclusive to PlayStation, the first expansion was shown at PlayStation’s conference as the branded marketing engine plows on. Guardians are travelling to Mercury to retrieve Osiris. Curse of Osiris is coming December 5th, 2017.
Monster Hunter: World Trailer & Details
Surprise announcement at PlayStation’s E3 conference earlier this year, Monster Hunter: World is coming to PS4, Xbox One and PC on January 26, 2018. There’s a PlayStation exclusive Beta coming to PlayStation Plus users on December 9th, 2017 and PlayStation players will be able to play as Horizon: Zero Dawn’s Alloy.
A new silly arcade racing game from Codemasters, the studio behind PS3’s popular Motorstorm series, is coming Summer 2018 exclusively to PS4.
New Spider-Man Trailer
A brand new trailer for Insomniac Games’ eagerly anticipated Spider-Man game showed off the new villain, Martin Li, leader of the Inner Demons. We see the familiar cast of characters dealing with the new threat to NYC including Peter Parker, Miles Morales, Aunt May and Mary Jane. At this point, I’m sure Insomniac will deliver a quality open world game like they always do, but I’m super over Spider-Man as a character we’ve seen rebooted 4 times in the past 10 years. So I’ll be more playing for the gameplay more than anything else.
New Detroit: Become Human Trailer showcasing… Domestic Violence
David Cage is back with another choose your own adventure game, this time tackling an alternate future where sentient androids fight for their rights in Detroit.
In this scenario, we see Kara, one of the three androids that the game will follow, as a new maid for abusive father Tod. Kara has many options for preventing the abuse of Tod’s daughter, several of which involve putting herself in the line of abuse from enraged Tod. It’s an incredibly upsetting gameplay demo, one that definitely merited a warning at the start that it would contain domestic violence. I’m less and less interested in Detroit: Become Human the more I see of it.
Detroit: Become Human releases exclusively for PS4 in 2018.
New God of War Trailer
The combo system is gone! Or at least, it’s not in this new trailer, where Kratos and his son fight their way through a cave of monsters in dramatic fashion. I’m going to miss the classic building combo meter that’s part of what has defined a God of War game for so many years. But what we lost in terms of combo action we appear to have gained in a finally remotely compelling protagonist.
Kratos has a son now, and Sony Santa Monica has ditched the lone wolf screaming man of previous God of War games and now follow this brooding, begrudging father as he guides his son, I assume some sort of demigod, through the world of Norse gods and monsters. Although the new trailer was quite short it has me sold. God of War is slated to release sometime in 2018.
New Shadow of the Colossus Trailer
I say “new” trailer but this is, of course, a remake of the Studio Japan classic PS2 title of the same name. Everything is looking a lot nicer than it did way back in 2005 when the original Shadow of the Colossus released. Check out the trailer below!
Finally, a new trailer for The Last of Us Part II
I’m torn. For me, The Last of Us is one of my favourite games of all time. I’ve played and replayed Joel and Ellie’s harrowing journey of loss and trust so many times the dialogue, combat encounters and collectables are all ingrained in my brain. I’ve spent over a hundred hours in the brilliant multiplayer mode and would say it’s one of my favourite multiplayer experiences to this day. But I’m a different person then I was when The Last of Us launched almost 5 years ago. I expect more from my games then gore for the sake of gore, and that’s all this new trailer seemed to give me.
With no context, no connection to any of these characters I was shown a harrowing and brutal scene of, well, watch for yourself:
I don’t think I liked it. Sure it looks great, Naughty Dog is a master of the cutscene. But I don’t care about anything that’s happening here. I’m not intrigued by what these people are up to or why they’re together. They’re just supposed to be a demonstration of how gory The Last of Us Part II will be I suppose. But we all knew it was going to be like that from the first game. Needless to say, with this somewhat disappointing trailer and the recent allegations of Naughty Dog’s abusive workplace, I don’t think I’m excited about this game. But that’s just me, I know millions clearly are.
That’s everything from PlayStation’s Paris Games Week live stream! Loads of exciting announcements for an indie fanatic like myself. But a lot of underwhelming VR games that’s making PSVR feel like it might go the way of the PS Eye. But who knows! VR is still unproven. Rounding out the conference with more high polished trailers for previously announced AAA PlayStation exclusives was to be expected, if not a little disappointing. PlayStation is holding another live stream at PlayStation Experience just next month on December 8th where we will hopefully get some release dates for the big games currently slated as TBD 2018.
Thanks for reading! What was your favourite announcement or trailer? What did you want to see but didn’t?
I’m the opposite when it comes to Detroit: Become Human – I can’t wait for this one! I played a demo at an expo earlier this year and loved it, but can totally see how it’s the sort of game that won’t be to everybody’s taste.
I’m also looking forward to Erica and the Shadow of the Colossus remake. I’d not heard of Oure or The Gardens Between before reading your post but they both look lovely; yet more games for the wishlist. 🙂
David Cage just as a designer is kinda cringey and creepy. He put an easter egg in “Indigo Prophecy” where a CGI version of himself grinds against the main character in her underwear. Not the kind of guy I expect to appropriately handle a topic like domestic abuse
The Gardens Between looks lovely, I’ve reached out to the developers for an interview so hopefully you can read more soon!
Ok… I get your point about David Cage: there’s clearly a chance for the topic to be handled badly. Hopefully the devs will show it a little more sensitivity… *crosses fingers*
Looking forward to hearing more about The Gardens Between, I’ll keep an eye out for future posts!