If Sony have been reading TwinStickGaming, they’ll already know that I, personally, would very (very, very) much like to see both Project Morpheus, and some general attention for the PS Vita at this year’s e3. However, on the off-chance that a multi-billion dollar company isn’t preparing their strategy for one of the world’s most important gaming conventions based on what some random guy on the internet would like to see, it might behoove us to take a little look at what other stuff we can reasonably expect from the entertainment giant.
Make no mistake, the stakes this year are high, and given that Microsoft enter e3 with a fair degree of momentum, thanks to recent, and highly well-received moves that have eaten away at Sony’s advantages in the next-gen market, it goes without saying that Sony need to really nail it this year!!
And, let’s be honest, for those of us who jumped on the next-gen bandwagon at the outset, there’s been a pretty noticeable dearth of both triple-A games in general, and an even more noticeable absence of what you could call exclusive console-sellers; in other words, those games that can push an on-the-fence-gamer in a particular direction, whilst also giving those who’ve already made the leap enough ammunition to be all smug and whatnot in an infinite number of internet chat rooms.
Indeed, given the new parity in price (and the convergence of policies in regard to Xbox Live/Playstation Plus, etc) this year’s battle for supremacy will almost certainly take place around actual big name games, so here’s a look at the (probable) arsenal Sony will bring with them to this particular theatre of war.
As ever, all the usual subject-to-change/unconfirmed rumours type caveats apply…..
Sony will be really hoping that Uncharted 4 can provide their BOOYAH!! moment at this year’s expo. They know it’s hugely popular, they know that there are many, many people waiting to dive into a new Nathan Drake adventure, and they know that they would be largely insane not to capitalise on this. That said, however, the road to Uncharted 4 has not been a particularly smooth one, and internal “issues” at Naughty Dog have made it something of an unknown quantity thus far. What we can hope to see at e3, though, is some significant footage (of around 3 – 5 minutes), and moreover, footage that will show how a game like Uncharted can be “turned up to 11” by the power of the next-gen consoles. Given that Naughty Dog are currently going through something of a “King Midas” phase (at least in terms of what they produce), Uncharted 4 seems like something to get really, really excited about!!
The Order: 1886
OK, so we already know that this little Steampunk-esque romp through an alternate history version of London has been delayed until next year, but that doesn’t mean it won’t feature at e3. In fact, for those people whose hopes were dashed when the delay was announced (*raises hand*), its involvement in this year’s expo may go some way to mitigating the crushing pain and disappointment it caused, and once again give us something to look forward to. Indeed, if the delay was largely in order to sort out a few, small(ish) issues, that might suggest that The Order: 1886 part of Sony’s segment may well be stunning, and, given the relative proximity of its launch date, actually whip up a lot of genuine excitement. If we return to the premise that a big part of e3 showings are about pushing on-the-fence gamers in a particular direction, for example, there’s every reason to believe that an awesome looking Order could still be a great tool to do just that.
The Last Guardian
The combination of it being so highly anticipated, and there being virtually no solid information about it at all, had turned The Last Guardian into a kind of urban legend amongst gamers. The “spiritual successor” to the immensely well-received Shadow of Colossus, The Last Guardian was first “unveiled” waaaaay back in 2009, but pretty much disappeared again straight away afterwards – leaving many wondering if they had just imagined the whole thing.
However, it’s increasingly likely that e3 2014 will see it come back again, and with something of a bang. Centering on the relationship between a wee lad and a massive bird/cat thing, The Last Guardian will almost certainly provide players with a deeply immersive, thought-provoking world of puzzles, danger and exceptional (no doubt silent) narrative adventure; another game with the potential to fully utilise all that’s awesome about Sony’s next-gen console.
Recently leaked footage (if it’s genuine, obviously) suggests that From Software’s latest project, currently named Project Beast, may well be at a sufficiently advanced stage to be shown at e3. Developed in partnership with Sony Japan, this PS4 exclusive is currently being touted as the “spiritual successor” (there’s that phrase again) to the Dark Souls and Demon’s Souls games, so we’d expect to see a similarly atmospheric and engrossing world, coupled with intensely difficult (yet hugely addictive) gameplay.
The Last of Us: Remastered with added Next-Gen BOOM!!
Confession time: when I was researching which next-gen to go for, I actually cried a little bit when I found out that the PS4 wouldn’t be backwards-compatible, and mostly because, owning an Xbox 360, I’d missed out on some of the PS3 exclusives, particularly The Last of Us, which seems to have been a stone-cold phenomenon. The promise that it might appear on whatever Playstation Now eventually looks like was good news, but the fact that it’s almost certainly going to be a digitally re-mastered PS4 title is freakin’ great news!!
Sure, it might not, strictly speaking, be a true next-gen game, but TLoU upgraded to the PS4 should still be a thing of sublime beauty and awesomeness, not only for people who missed it the first time around, but also for existing fans who can re-experience it on their next-gen consoles, with all the added power and oomph that they can provide.
What’s not to like, eh!?
Quantic Dream’s “Unnamed Project”!?
Forgive me, but the following explanation might not be the easiest to follow: The inclusion of something that may or may not be unnamed, which may or may not exist, may or may not feature at e3, depending on what Microsoft do!!
Got it? No, me neither. Essentially though, if it’s not just a rumour, and does actually exist, something being developed by French company Quantic Dream, might be shown by Sony if they feel they need something extra after Microsoft’s own exploits. So, if it is revealed, what do we know about it (other than that it’s pretty much the videogame version of Schrodinger’s cat)?
Well, not a lot is the short answer. The team behind Beyond: Two Souls, and Heavy Rain, Quantic Dream have carved out a niche for themselves in the genre of “Interactive Drama”, so one could reasonably expect this new title to be something in a similar vein, perhaps with visuals akin to the Dark Sorcerer tech demo shown by them at last year’s e3.
Whatever it is, or will be, it leaves Playstation fans in the rather peculiar position of hoping that Microsoft have a great e3, just so they can get to see it.
However, in terms of what that means for next-gen gaming in general, it’s probably not such a bad thing. If the two biggest players keep pushing each other all the way, the real winners will undoubtedly be us gamers, even if we’ve opted for one console over the other.
Given e3’s literally only days away, here’s hoping it lives up to the hype.