Sony kicked of the PlayStation Experience 2015 with a keynote featuring several major announcements, and we chronicled all of them below. Here's a quick recap of what we saw during the show.
- We got gameplay for the Final Fantasy VII Remake, and it looks like the battle system will have more in common with Crisis Core than the original game. Disappointing to some, perhaps, but not surprising. Final Fantasy VII for PS4 is also out today.
- Sony is getting a bunch of timed exclusives, including the Battleborne beta and the first Call of Duty Black Ops 3 map pack, which is called Awakening.
- The latest Street Fighter V character has been unveiled. His name is F.A.N.G., and he looks like another kung-fu master. You can see his reveal trailer below.
- A bunch of Double Fine announcements for this show, including the long-awaited Full Throttle remaster. Double Fine also revealed that Psychonauts 2 will be playable on PlayStation VR, which is actually pretty cool. [Correction: It will be a VR specific game called "Rhombus of Ruin," not Psychonauts 2.]
- The Last Blade 2, Bastion, The Bit.Trip, and Nuclear Throne are all heading to the Vita, which is nice. King of Fighters XIV was also confirmed for PlayStation 4.
- Ratchet & Clank is getting a movie, and it's coming out next year.
- On the VR front, Rez and Ace Combat 7 highlighted Sony's PlayStation VR offerings. Numerous other trailers were also shown.
- Yakuza 5 will be out next Tuesday, and Yakuza Zero has officially been confirmed for a North American release. And even better news for Japanese gaming fans, Ni No Kuni is getting a sequel. You can watch the trailer below.
- Finally, a new event is coming to Destiny. In the spirit of Star Wars, you'll get to race speeder bikes. Very cool.
Jaz and I are headed to the show floor to check all this stuff out. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments. We'll have more coverage as the show progresses!
Sony has already confirmed that several PlayStation 2 games are on the way to the PlayStation 4 PSN Store, including Rogue Galaxy and several Grand Theft Auto games. We wouldn't be shocked if more announcements are forthcoming during the show.
Jaz and I will be updating this piece with trailers, announcements, and our own opinions as the keynote progresses, so come hang out with us in the comments and share your own thoughts!
Sony opens with Uncharted 4. Nathan Drake is talking to a figure from his past, and he has dialogue options! In this case, it's a sneaky way of asking which Uncharted is your favorite (Uncharted 2, obviously). Interesting to see Uncharted going full Telltale given that it was basically already an on-rails adventure game.
Now we've got more Final Fantasy VII Remake! We've got actual gameplay, and as expected, the battle system is reminiscent of what we saw in the PSP's Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII. There's a menu system, but it looks much more dynamic and action-oriented than the original game. Like? Dislike? We're interested in your thoughts. Regardless, it's nice to see actual in-engine gameplay so soon after the original announcement. We're making progress! In the meantime, the PC re-release of Final Fantasy VII is available on PS4 today.
Continuing on to Call of Duty: Black Ops 3. The first map pack is called Awakening, and it is a timed exclusive for the PlayStation 4. Activision is also introducing the Call of Duty World League, which will be the eSports destination for Call of Duty. Sony will be their presenting partner. The eSports gold rush continues.
Pleasant announcement for Battleborn: It will support couch co-op, which is the secret most important multiplayer feature you can have. Battleborn's open beta is also on the way, and it will be out first on the PlayStation 4. And if you play in the beta, you will get a special exclusive character that will be available after launch. In the meantime, Gearbox has now introduced a new characater in Toby - a penguin in a mech suit. You can read our thoughts on Battleborn to this point here.
Street Fighter V time now, and it looks like we have a new character in F.A.N.G. - a kung-fu master with long sleeves and sunglasses. Getting Kung Lao flashbacks for some reason. Yoshinori Ono: "This is the first time we've been able to show a character without a leak, so we're really happy about that." Much laughter in the audience. F.A.N.G. is a member of M. Bison's organization, and he uses tricky and deceptive attacks to defeat his enemies. Street Fighter V will be out on February 16, 2016, with Alex, Guile, Balrog, Ibuki, Juri, and Urien becoming available in the months after launch, all of whom will earnable for free via gameplay. But if you want them immediately, you can purchase a season pass and download them.
We've got a bunch of smaller games now. Dead Star looks pretty cool in the way that it combines twinstick shooting with a huge number of players. Death's Gambit looks like a 2D sidescrolling Shadow of the Colossus, and Double Fine has another project not named Psychonauts 2 in Head Lander, which looks like an odd sort of puzzle platformer with Max Headroom elements. We also got a fresh look at Double Fine's Day of the Tentacle remaster, which looks pretty amazing. It'll be out on March 2016. Between this and Dark Souls III, we may never see Bob again.
And another new announcement from Double Fine! Full Throttle is getting remastered, too! They're really on a roll. Finally, we have Psychonauts 2, which will be playable on PlayStation VR - kind of the perfect format for such a mindbending game. Looking forward to this one.
If you JRPG fans haven't had enough news today, we've got a trailer for Zodia: Orcanon Odyssey, an absolutely gorgeous looking RPG. It didn't get great reviews on mobile, but maybe it'll be better on console? We've also got Yakuza news: Yakuza is out Tuesday, and Yakuza Zero has officially been confirmed for North America. The latter one is on PlayStation 4, and it takes place in the '80s, making it a prequel. It looks just as awesome as always.
Now for fighting game news: The Dreamcast and Neo-Geo classic Last Blade 2 is coming out on PlayStation 4 and Vita, and King of Fighters XIV has been confirmed for PlayStation 4 as well. And while it's not a fighting game, we're also getting a new action game from Team Ninja called Nioh, which was shown at TGS. It's not a new Ninja Gaiden, but it doesn't look too bad.
Vita indies news!! Bastion is officially out on PlayStation Vita right now. More Vita games: The Bit.Trip and Nuclear Throne, both of which are welcome additions. For all the proclamations of the Vita being dead, there have been quite a few nice little stealth announcements for the platform lately.
And in news that will only interest me, we've got our first look at MLB The Show 16. The best-looking sports game of the generation looks amazing as usual. Not much info, but it will be out March 29. I'll be there Day One.
Okay, back to downloadable games. We have Guns Up, which is free-to-play and available today. Fast Princess Adventures is also back, and it's out today as well. Anyone who remembers Fat Princess on the PlayStation 3 will recall that it was a fun four-player team competitive game. Sadly, they've gone away from the charming 2D art of the original in favor of a 3D look.
Time to move on to Rachet & Clank, which has flown under the radar to this point. This version is a "re-imagining" of the original, and includes lots of new content. Sony's presentation includes a live demo, and it's looking quite pretty - still faithful to the original PS2 game but much more detailed. We also get to see the eponymous characters meeting each other for the first time, which is cute. In a bit of surprise news, there's apparently a Ratchet & Clank movie on the way as well, and it will be out April 28th, 2016. It should go over well with the kids. The game will be out April 12th.
Sony is finally bringing out their big VR demo, and it's... something. Very simple graphics, and the gameplay is faintly remniscent of Pong. It's meant to offer a taste of what's possible in the gameplay, but its simplicity really undercuts the power of the technology. Not a good look for Morpheus.
But hey, Rez is back! We've got 3D audio, it's in 1080p, and it's playable in VR, which actually is kind of awesome. Remember when Child of Eden was being used to sell Kinect? It feels like Sony is taking a page out of Microsoft's playbook. In any case, this seems a bit more promising than the initial tech demo.
Adam Boyes is here to talk up the various Morpheus games: EVE Valkyrie, Battlezone, and so forth. We also have an Ubisoft game called Eagle Flight, which seems to be just as it says on the package - you are an eagle flying through a 3D world. People who suffer serious motion sickness need not apply. And oh look, it appears to be an open world game if the usernames are any indication. Looks pretty clever.
Continuing on, we've got a game from Sony Santa Monica, who have been busy making literally anything but God of War. Their game is... a cartoon zombie game? It's called the Zombie Taxi Co., and it looks like a Plants vs. Zombies knockoff, but without the plants. Very strange choice by Sony Santa Monica.
Next, we've got a little game from Highwire Games called Golem. It's being developed from the ground-up for PlayStatation VR, and it looks like you play as a little girl controlling a golem. It's not entirely clear what's going on in this game, but the gameplay possibilities are interesting. The only question is whether you're playing as the girl, or the golem, or both. Should be interesting regardless.
Continuing on with our literal titles, we've got 100 Ft. Robot Golf, which again, is just as it says on the box. Cute nod to Neon Genesis Evangelion at the end, and there's a corgi too, so we've got total '90s anime overload. Robots, golf... sure, why not.
Finally, Ace Combat is back, and it's exclusive to PlayStation VR. It's good to see that Namco Bandai's classic flight sim series is getting a new life as something other than a free-to-play downloadable game in Ace Combat 7. This is the sort of game that PlayStation VR seems made for. We're only getting a teaser though, so don't expect it until 2017. Hopefully it'll be playable outside of Morpheus, but it sounds like it'll be a VR exclusive.
Destiny news incoming: We've got a new event coming to The Taken King. It's speeder bike racing, and it will last for three weeks. Looks like Destiny is getting us hyped for the new Star Wars movie by invoking, uh, The Phantom Menace. Whatever, this looks way more fun than the actual game. The event will include a quest in which you can earn an exclusive sparrow and win various rewards. The event will debut in-game on Tuesday, December 8th.
If you're wondering what Runic Games has been up to, a new game from the creators of Torchlight is coming to PlayStation 4. It's a top-down action game in which you play as a character who looks a little Red Riding Hood. I can definitely tell you that it's not an RPG. It'll be out next year.
Level-5 is up next with a sequel to Ni No Kuni. As you might expect, it's a beautifuly and whimsical-looking anime-style game. The original wasn't great, but it did get a lot of attention for being... well... big. Even if it's a second-tier RPG, it's a very welcome addition to the PlayStation 4's library.
And after a quick trailer for Paragon, the new MOBA from Epic, we're done! Everyone is heading down to play the games, and we're going to be joining them! What are your thoughts on the keynote? Exciting? Disappointing? Let us know in the comments.