Sony E3 2016
Sony are known for filling their E3 conferences with an onslaught of news and announcements on its hardware and upcoming games. 2016 continued that trend, managing to pack in a ridiculous amount of content into their hour long show. Originally airing at 2am GMT, I’m sure not many of you were able to stay up and watch, so check out our roundup of all the important bits below.
God of War
Sony’s show opened with an impressive full-scale orchestra and choir, building up to preview gameplay from the Playstation 4’s iteration of God of War. Beardy Nordic Kratos elicits loud cheers from the audience as he goes hunting with his son in an unknown snowy location that feels very Witcher 3 or Skyrim-like. Gone are Kratos’ blades and weapons, he now wields an axe which is better suited to the Nordic/Viking setting. The action also takes place from an over the shoulder view rather than the overhead views of the previous games, which I found to be a bit jarring at first, but got used to it after a couple of minutes.
The preview showed the violence that the God of War games are known for as Kratos takes on a horned monster, however the most interesting part for me was the focus on the relationship between Kratos and his son. In many ways I felt reminded of the Naughty Dog games: The Last of Us and the Uncharted series, which are known for their strong storytelling. It seems then that relationships could be something that this God of War game may be focusing on too. This would add a new dimension to the series which has until now, solely been driven by Kratos’ revenge.
Next up a cinematic trailer from a game created by Bend Studio. Massively reminiscent of The Last of Us, it showcases a post-apocalyptic world set in the American wilderness with a biker hero as it’s protagonist. I absolutely love a good dystopian game, so I’ll definitely be looking out for this, although there’s no release date as yet.
The Last Guardian
A game that has been in development since 2007 and was first announced in 2009, The Last Guardian from Team Ico has finally got a release date: 25th October 2016 and I literally can’t believe it. Ico and Shadow of the Colossus are two of my favourite games of all time, so this is a pretty big deal for me. Instead of getting too hyped though, I’m just going to try and forget it’s coming out at all, so when it does I’ll be pleasantly surprised and if it’s pushed back again I won’t be crushingly disappointed 🙁 .
Horizon: Zero Dawn
Robot dinosaurs and prehistoric sci-fi action? That’s something I didn’t know I wanted until I saw the gameplay trailer for Horizon: Zero Dawn from Guerilla. It’s set in a beautiful open world too, with some seriously impressive world and creature designs. It’s slated for release early next year coming to the US first in February and the UK in March 2017.
Detroit: Become Human
Neo-noir, sci-fi and thriller are the three-word password to my bank account. No, not really (yes really). Quantic Dream seem to know this and keep releasing games that I have to buy no matter what. Detroit: Become Human seems as though it will be exploring similar themes to the movie Blade Runner via Heavy Rain-style gameplay. All I have to say about this is SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY! The cinematic trailer introduces us to an android called Connor who has to deal with a hostage situation involving another android who is protesting being a slave to humans. Just like Heavy Rain there are a number of different outcomes depending on what you decide, but powered by the PS4’s engine, this game looks closer and closer to a ‘choose your own adventure’ interactive film than any of their previous outings.
Resident Evil 7
Ohhh boy! (disclaimer: I can’t play scary games because I’m a big wuss). What I thought was a demonstration of Sony’s Playstation Virtual Reality, actually was a tease for Resi VII which will be playable on PS4 and PSVR. I can’t really comment on much else as I was watching through my fingers, but the release date is 24th January 2017 so hopefully someone from the Geek Pride team who is more suited to reviewing horror games, will be able to give a better review than I can.
Coming out 13th October 2016 in America! 50 VR compatible games scheduled for release by the end of 2016! $399! Very US-centric, but hopefully we’ll be getting a firm release date and price for the UK soon. All good news though so far. Then we get the demos and honestly, Sony really seem to be mopping the floor with their competition this year: Star Wars: Battlefront VR, Farpoint, Batman Arkham VR, Final Fantasy XV VR, ALL THE VR!!!
Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
I’m a bit burned out on the Call of Duty and Battlefield franchises, but honestly I love the look of this entry in the CoD series. Setting it in space adds a whole new dimension of gravity related gameplay involving grappling hooks. There’s the usual CoD first person shooter gameplay of course, but I think this iteration should breathe some new life into a franchise that has been wearing thin for a number of years now.
Oh yeah there’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare remastered coming out too.
And speaking of remastering stuff. Crash Bandicoot 1, 2 and Warped are getting the PS4 treatment (because money) and Crash will also be part of the next Skylanders game (I didn’t think Skylanders was still a thing – is it still a thing?).
Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Lego games are my kryptonite. I have far too many of them and they’re all pretty much exactly the same, but I can’t seem to stop buying them. The Lego version of The Force Awakens looks absolutely brilliant too, full of the Lego humour and creative takes on the scenes from the films they emulate too. Oh release date in 2 weeks too, I’m sure I will be adding it to my collection.
Hideo Kojima. Dead crabs everywhere. Norman Reedus crying. Invisible tar baby. Dead fish. Dead whales. No idea what’s going on. There are people floating in the sky. The audience are too confused to clap properly. I am too confused to write something decent about what I just saw. Check out the trailer and see what you think.
A Sony-exclusive Spiderman game from Insomniac. I’m not sure what else to say other than it looks like a pretty cool Spider-man game.
Days Gone (again)
Didn’t I write about this earlier? *scrolls up* Oh yeah. Okay they didn’t show us any gameplay really, so now we get a live demo. As I watch this, I think more and more they have stealthed a Last of Us 2 and my suspicions are confirmed when we get zombies. They’re not like the clickers of The Last of Us though, they look a bit more like the regular zombies we get on TV shows like The Walking Dead or like the zombie hoards in World War Z to be exact. The gameplay looks frantic and extremely tense. A brilliant way to end Sony’s press conference in my opinion.
So that’s all folks. A seriously impressive press conference from Sony with a ton of exclusives. That was a lot to take in over one hour and I know I’ll be going back and watching the game trailers a few times to examine them in a bit more detail. What impressed you guys the most? Let us know in the comments or via the usual social media methods.