The PlayStation E3 Experience happened in the early hours of this morning, and there was such a bombardment of awesome announcements that I might need a cigarette and a shower now. Hit the jump to see what went down.
The conference was started off by Shawn Layton who delivered the bombshell reveal of new The Last Guardian footage. After all these years of silence, actually seeing this game running is like seeing a unicorn. The gameplay involves a young boy navigating a sprawling ruin with a massive eagle-dog-thing. Players control the giant animal with shouts and gestures, and the whole thing looks absolutely lovely. The trailer ended with a 2016 release date, and hopefully we’ll see more soon.
Shuhei Yoshida then took to the stage to share his excitement for The Last Guardian, before introducing a presentation from Guerrilla Games. Horizon: Zero Dawn is a new IP, following a society of cave-dwellers exploring a post-apocolyptic world populated with lumbering robots. Aside from highly detailed graphics and animations, there’s an awe-inspiring mix of nature with technology. The climax of the trailer is a fight against a robot T-Rex using explosive arrows, harpoons, and spears.
Wasting no time, the conference went straight into a trailer for the next Hitman game. No subtitle, just Hitman. Gameplay promises a globe-trotting assassination game, described as the most ambitious Hitman yet. PS4 gamers will get access to the beta first, as well as six pieces of additional content.
Moving to something else familiar was a short trailer for Street Fighter V, announcing a beta starting on July 23rd. You might remember that Street Fighter V will only be on PS4 and PC for its entire lifespan. The game is set for a March 2016 release date.
The much anticipated No Man’s Sky then hit the screens for a gameplay presentation, showing off the universal sandbox. The demo started right in the middle of a spaceship battle, with massive cruisers dropping out of hyperdrive. The highlight of the trailer was zooming out in the map screen, showing off the literally inumerable amounts of star systems available. Basically, every star on the map has several planets to explore, and there are clearly too many worlds and systems for any single player to see them all. Some on-foot gameplay was shown off, demonstrating species discovery and the fully destructible environments. There’s still no release date, but it’s looking to be a huge game.
Next was Dreams, a PlayStation 4 exclusive from Media Molecule. It features a system of creating dreams, and then sharing those dreams with others to explore. To do this, a new creation engine was created that allows details to be painted in. The visuals are trippy, featuring impossible spaces and fantastic visuals. No release date was given, but more information was promised to be shown at the Paris Games Week.
Next was a trailer for the console debut of Firewatch, a mystery set in the Wyoming wilderness. The short trailer showed off a little gameplay, and mostly emphasised the interaction between your character, and a woman’s, on your radio.
Adam Boyes then took to the stage to show off Destiny: The Taken King. Love it or hate it, Destiny is still a big deal, and The Taken King sees player hunted by Oryx, a space-badass. New skills and super-moves are coming to the game, and the DLC will hit consoles on September 15th, later this year.
World of Final Fantasy played a short trailer, demonstrating cutesy gameplay. Exclusive to PS Vita and PS4, the game follows siblings as they battle and befriend familiar enemies, heroes, and heroines from the Final Fantasy franchise.
This announcement was completely overshadowed by the announcement of Final Fantasy 7: Remake. Yep. They finally did it, we’re actually getting the most beloved of the series for current-gen. There wasn’t any gameplay, and this won’t be PlayStation exclusive either. Regardless, the crowd was going nuts for this one.
A demo-reel for a series for games from Devolver Digital was then shown off, and I swear each one was bloodier than the last. These games were Ronin, Eitr, Mother Russia Bleeds, and Crossing Souls.
In keeping with this theme of “Let’s announce everything”, Shenmue III was announced in the form of a Kickstarter campaign from series creator Yu Suzuki. The campaign is now live, and the fate of Shenmue III is now in gamer’s hands. At time of writing, the campaign has raised more than $1 million, 50% of its funding goal.
Next came a Batman: Arkham Knight story trailer. The trailer showed off some first-person gameplay as a Gotham City police officer is attacked by Scarecrow’s Fear Gas. It’s grim, really really grim, and sets the stage for what should be an epic game, out next week.
A brief presentation of Project Morpheus came next, emphasising VR multiplayer. The flagship title for this multiplayer is a game called RIGS, a 3V3 mech-shooter game. Talk then moved on to Spotify, and PlayStation Vue. Vue is rolling out in more American territories and allows users to cherry-pick TV channels to subscribe to.
Call of Duty: Black OPS III then cropped up to show off some brand new gameplay. BLOPS III will have a 4-player co-op campaign that will allow for more freedom of gameplay style than previous CoDs. Load-outs can be selected pre-mission, and the game’s new bionic powers were shown off. The trailer also showed off quadrupedal walking tanks, which of course can be driven. A multiplayer reveal then showed off some new features, such as underwater combat and playable robot characters.
PlayStation 4 owners will get first access to the CoD: BLOPS III beta this August. And a new deal with Activision will ensure that PlayStation will get all the CoD map packs first. Black Ops III will launch November 6th, 2015.
Disney Infinity 3.0 then hit screens to give some details about the two upcoming Star Wars themed playsets, and announce a PlayStation exclusive bundle. This bundle will bring the Rise Against the Empire playset to PlayStation a month earlier than anywhere else. In case you’re wondering, this is the playset that covers the Original Trilogy storylines. Also included in the bundle is Twilight of the Republic, based on the Prequel Trilogy.
Moving on to a larger scale, Star Wars: Battlefront debuted a new game type called Survival. This is a horde-mode that sees players hold-off against waves of enemies while waiting for evac. Also briefly shown off was split-screen multiplayer. It goes without saying by now that the game looks awesome.
To close off the stage presentation was a live-gameplay demo of Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. The demo started in a densely crowded market, and saw Nathan Drake fighting through goons and armoored vehicles. The level of detail is astounding, with nearly every shot object reacting physically or outright shattering. The action then hit the road as Drake started driving a Jeep at breakneck speeds through a maze-like city. It looks fast paced and fun, just like the Uncharted series is known for.
And that brought the PlayStation E3 2015 Experience to a close, and Sony clearly brought their A-game. Between exciting new IP in the form of Horizon and Dreams, the long-awaited gameplay premiere of The Last Guardian, the return of Shenmue III, and a Final Fantasy 7 remake, this might be the most surprising E3 conference yet.