Sony E3 2017 Conference

Well what can you say about last year’s E3 for Sony?  Tons of new announcements, a return of beloved franchises, and partnerships that continue to push the envelope for PlayStation fans alike.  Games like God of War, Spider-Man, and Bend Studio’s Days Gone finally being revealed.  Hideo Kojima showing off the beginning works of a new project in Death Stranding (which in typical Kojima fashion, left more questions than answers), and one last push for PSVR promotion before it officially launched in October of last year.  Would it even be possible to reach the bar that was set so high in 2016 for this generation’s clear front-runner.

Following suite from their conference at PlayStation Experience in Anaheim last December, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy kicked off the show in stunning fashion.  Back are the amazing set pieces put together by developer Naughty Dog, along with the ebbs and flows of the new team-up of Nadine Ross (Uncharted 4), and fan favorite Chloe Frazier (Uncharted 2 and 3).  Uncharted: The Lost Legacy will release in North America this summer on August 22nd.

Back in early March, Guerrilla  Games came out and announced that due to the positive critical and commercial reception for Horizon Zero Dawn, we could expect to receive story DLC for the game.  E3 looked to be the perfect time for Guerrilla to make its return to show the newest addition to the post-post-apocalyptic world, with Horizon Zero Dawn: The Frozen Wilds.  Based on the trailer shown, the new expansion looks to be more of the same from the based game released in February this year, and that’s perfect!  The expansion content is set to release sometime later in 2017.

When Bend Studio first announced their new game Days Gone last year, there were murmurs about the similarities to another already successful post-apocalyptic zombie exclusive for Sony, The Last of Us.  Based on the gameplay trailer that was shown off during Sony conference this year however, Days Gone now looks to have separated itself from the ideals of The Last of Us, and looks to give us an open world experience, filled with fully fledged day and night cycles and dynamic weather effects. There’s still no timetable for when to expect us to get our hands on the final version of Days Gone, but seeing the project begin to form its own identity bodes well for the future.

There were also a couple of franchises that will be making their return to the PlayStation family. First up, the Monster Hunter series will be coming back to PlayStation fans for the first time since 2011 with Monster Hunter World.  Capcom will looking also be releasing the game for Xbox One alongside PlayStation 4 in early 2018 before also coming to PC at a later date.  Staying on the subject of returning titles, Japan Studio’s Shadow of the Colossus is once again being remastered for the current Sony Console, and is expected to release in 2018.

With the return of the classic Marvel vs Capcom mashup coming this September, it was time for Capcom to pull back the curtain on what other characters would be making their appearance in Marvel vs Capcom Infinite.  Before announcing a downloadable story demo available at the time of the press conference, we got to see a bit more of the collaboration thanks to the likes of Captain America, Dante, Mega-Man, Thanos, Ultron, Rocket Racoon, and more to boot.  Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite will be making its way into fighting fan’s hands on September 19th.

After much annoyance from the millions of fans of the series, Call of Duty is finally making its way back into the trenches of the World War II era.  Releasing on November 3rd this year, Call of Duty: WWII publisher Activision is keeping themselves within the PlayStation family, with early access to DLC and exclusive content for the system.  Developer Sledgehammer didn’t have too much more to show to fans with the new story trailer, but our cries have been heard and the far-future settings of the past few years are set to the wayside until at least 2018.

Last year’s E3 saw Sony’s last big push to market their new virtual reality headset before it made its way onto store shelves this past October.  With over a million units sold to date, it was now time for PlayStation VR to make another splash with its second wave of big title announcements.  The following games were announced as new games coming to PSVR: Skyrim VR, Star Child (Playful), The Inpatient and Bravo Team (Supermassive Games), Final Fantasy XV Monster of the Deep (Square Enix), and Moss (PolyArc).

After officially reviving the God of War series and taking a sharp turn in the tone, Kratos and his son were back this year.  Santa Monica Studios continued to impress with a mixture of new features to the game, from deeper dialog and the relationship with him and his son, to the more traditional hack and slash style from previous entries.  Maybe there’s a chance we get see Arteus as a playable character in the game?  God of War is set to come out in 2018.

The last time we got a look at Detroit: Become Human during E3 2016, we were introduced to a new character and the different mission outcome possibilities.  Once again, there was another character introduced in Marcus, another AI.  The gameplay / cinematic demo sees Marcus breaking into a sort of AI shop to recruit more AI units to the cause.  We again got to see multiple story branches based on the decisions players can make.  There still isn’t a release date for Detroit yet, despite being be announced the earliest of all the games shown during the show.  Hopefully by the end of the year (maybe PSX in December?) we’ll get an official release date / window for the title.

Activision and PlayStation are also continuing their console exclusive content this year with Destiny 2. PlayStation users are getting exclusive exotic gear and weapons, strike, ship, and a pvp map.  Destiny 2 is coming out on September 8th.

To close the E3 conference for Sony this year was new gameplay for Insomniac’s exclusive Spider-Man game.  The gameplay demo covered most of the big areas: traversal, combat, chase sequences.  The combat and gadgets available surely take from the Batman Arkham series along with the environmental interactions you can access.  Also making there way into the game from the Marvel Cinematic Universe were villains Wilson Fisk and Mister Negative.  Not to mention a last minute tease of  Miles Morales before revealing a 2018 release window.

It’s tough to match the excitement of last year’s E3 press conference for Sony, especially taking into account the knowledge of knowing most of the games shown were going to be a couple years out at the least.  Fortunately there were some big games that did give us an idea of when to expect them, like God of War and Spider-Man.  Having an announcement for a PS4 remaster for Shadow of Colossus is great for fans of the series, as well as seeing Days Gone begin to form its own identity in the saturated post-apocalyptic gaming genre.  Next year’s E3 already has high expectations for some games that were absent this year.  How far along will Death Stranding and The Last of Us Part 2 be?  When will we get Detroit: Become Human?  There’re a ton of questions that will continue to surround the PlayStation community for the next few years, yet the continual delivery of great games shouldn’t be a cause for concern with the big upcoming titles for Sony in the coming years.

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