Sony’s E3 2014 Press Conference Recap!

Unless you live under a rock or just don’t play games, you’d know that Day 0 of E3 is usually one of the best days of the year for a gamer. A huge amount of announcements are made in Day 0 from some of the biggest gaming companies in the world. I was given the esteemed task of writing up my thoughts on Sony’s keynote about the future of their gaming consoles following last year’s huge conference. Spoiler alert – it was underwhelming and full of smoke and mirror announcements!

Like always, we’re just covering the highlights as opposed to recapping the entire event.

Now I know that seems harsh but allow me to explain why it was such an overrated experience. It’s true that Sony tried to convey a very exciting conference; every announcement was full of energy, offering an electric feeling that seemed to course throughout the event. Yes, it was awesome to hear about Battlefield Hardline’s Exclusive beta period on PS4 and PC starting the day of the conference. Of course, it was great seeing that Destiny will be in a beta on PS4 for the weekend following E3. The nerd in me lost my mind seeing actual gameplay of Batman: Arkham Knight featuring Batman jumping in and out of the Batmobile. The problem with all of this is that they will also be released on the Xbox One at the exact same time.

Sony spent too much time bragging about timed exclusives and not showing more gameplay of their own IPs. Perfect example of this was the heavy amount of time focused on indie games that are coming to PS4 (many which looked totally awesome), instead of giving more show time to the PS Vita which hasn’t been selling exceptionally well. Why not show the indie games going to the Vita? There are a bunch of game’s, like Hotline Miami 2, that’s coming to the Vita and not to the 3DS. It’s like Sony didn’t have that much to show outside of things coming to other platforms.

Huge themes in Sony’s press conference, beyond indie games, were rereleased classics on the next gen system. The crowd roared when hearing that Grim Fandango was going to be hitting these generations’ systems. We also received confirmation that The Last of Us will be getting beautifully upscaled to the PS4. Soon after we began to see a gorgeous view of Los Santos as Sony finally confirmed that GTA V will be coming to a “current” gen console. Yet, another clever light show because that game will also be released on Xbox One and PC. Now to be fair, Microsoft announced newer old titles at their press conference too. The difference I saw was that most of them were in fact new games; Crackdown and Phantom Dust are being rebooted, not remastered for the Xbox One. Microsoft also showed games coming to both platforms. That said, a lot of what they showed was exclusive to them or had exclusive content.

I guess my issue was with Sony’s pokes at Microsoft. There were knocks against them, yet Sony wasn’t showing anything that made the PS4 a better console. Things weren’t all bad though; it is nice to see cool games regardless of what system they’ll end up on. Sony did give us some really awesome far cry 4 gameplay while also announcing that, only on ps4, will you be able to invite friends to help you even if they don’t own the game*. While we didn’t get specifics on how that works, it’s still freaking cool to think about and look forward to. Not long after we got to see a really awesome trailer of Dead Island 2 which introduced us to our next zombie infested vacation spot, LOS ANGELES!

Sony also had a few great exclusive looks for themselves beyond gameplay videos of impartial game releases like Mortal Kombat X. We were able to see actual gameplay for The Order: 1886 that looked just as stunning as the original trailer did last year. We also finally found out what Project Beast really is and a time period on which it will be released. It was revealed that the project is a dark action game called Bloodborne, and the trailer itself really showed how sinister it was. With zombie like beings and a glimpse of what seemed to be a huge monster, there looks to be plenty of blood and violence coming into 2015.

In between those showings, Sony announced that we are going to be able to post videos directly to YouTube for the first time ever on a console. With a generation of online gaming videos being so popular, this may help skyrocket our next big YouTube celebrity into the fray. There was also a short mention of Sony’s streaming game rental service ‘PlayStation Now’ where you can rent a game directly to your consoles and Sony TV for a fee. The issue with the announcement is that it still didn’t really explain exactly how it worked. How much will each game cost to rent and for how long? So we are still left with unanswered questions that we had even before E3 began. The crowd gave plenty of “oooh’s” and “ahh’s” over the Sony PlayStation TV. Only issue is that it will jump into the market heavily controlled by Apple TV and Chromecast for Media streaming as well as kill off any need for a PS Vita (in terms of streaming PS4 content).

Now I must end on a good note with Sony’s conference and talk about their biggest game announcements. We were shown Suda 51’s trailer for an apparently violent game called Let It Die, coming to the PS4 in 2015. Didn’t see gameplay but it seems that there will be some really violent combat and an RPG leveling aspect; the combatant would brutally kill people before taking their weapons. We saw there will be a redux of the original Ratchet and Clank game that will be accompanied by a movie next year. But the biggest announcements of the night were the trailers of Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, No man’s Sky, and LittleBigPlanet 3.

LBP3 and No Man’s Sky showed us completely unique gaming experiences. LBP3 gave us a look at new characters, each with different abilities to help conquer the game’s many levels. This of course will lead to more interesting puzzles and clever user created maps. No Man’s Sky’s trailer was even better than the one shown at VGX; it seems to be an intergalactic title where you can explore different universes and planets without ever having to sit at a loading screen. Hello Games said that there were infinite possibilities and that no two people will have the same game experience. Sounds like an outstanding idea! As for Uncharted, we didn’t get any gameplay but the trailer was stunning to look at. In it, we saw an older looking Nathan Drake and heard him talking to his partner Sully about a “last ride” which gave everyone the feeling that we may see a character in the franchise die. Regardless of that, everyone in the audience gasped as we saw the beautifully built trailer and hoped to get our hands on it before 2015. Right before Sony revealed it was coming next year!

The issue with most of Sony’s conference was that most of their exclusives that we are looking forward to will be released next year. This sucks because many of their competitors’ exclusives will be released at the end of this year. Yes, all the other tech stuff and exclusive content (extra DLC missions, etc.) was cool, but we have heard enough of that. WE WANT NEW AND EXCLUSIVE GAMES FOR YOUR CONSOLES SONY! You’re currently in the lead sales wise. Don’t mess it up with lack luster line ups.

Final Verdict:


*We haven’t confirmed on whether or not gamers will be able to play with their friends who don’t own a copy of Far Cry 4 on the Xbox One. Right now, it seems like it’s a Sony only deal though!

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