As we've pointed out in other articles, the PlayStation 4 is ahead in sales, but one major problem the system has had this holiday season is a lack of exclusives. Today, Sony kicked off a keynote presentation at the PlayStation Experience event, a celebration of everything PlayStation and a mini-E3 in the midst of December. Sony wants you to be happy with your current PS4, PS3, or Vita ownership or see big smiles when you receive a PlayStation system this Christmas.
The interesting thing about the keynote was the jumping back and forth between brand-new games, indies, and returning classics. In the spirit of that ideal, I've separated the announcements into different categories: New Games, Old Games, and First-Time PlayStation Releases.
The New Hotness
In the category of new games, the biggest PlayStation 4 highlight goes to the lengthy gameplay trailer of Uncharted 4: A Thief's End. The game… it looks like Uncharted. It featured an older Nathan Drake, exploring caves of the dead, sneaking across jungles, and shooting enemies from waist-high cover. Drake looks to have a new grappling hook for traversing terrain, but otherwise, this is the Uncharted you've played before. One odd bit in the trailer is a gentleman calling Drake "little brother", something that shouldn't happen since he's an orphan. We'll know more about Uncharted 4 by E3 probably, before its planned release sometime in 2015.
Street Fighter V was confirmed as a console exclusive, so if you want it, you better pick it up on PlayStation 4 or PC. The game will feature cross-platform play on both platforms for the first time in series history. There's no release date for Street Fighter V, but in the meantime, Capcom is also bringing Ultra Street Fighter IV to PS4 in Spring 2015! The title will "debut exclusively" on Sony's platform, so you can probably expect an Xbox One version of Ultra eventually.
Katamari Damacy creator Keita Takahashi introduced his new title, Wattam. What is it about? I have no clue. The brief onstage description talked about a "unique, charming world" full of "interesting people", so it might be an Animal Crossing-style game? Watch the trailer and join me in confusion.
This was technically announced last night at the first Game Awards, but it was plugged again today by Sony. The Odd Gentlemen, the studio behind The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom, will be making a brand-new King's Quest game. The title is part of a Sierra revival initiative at Activision. The game looks very "Telltale" in style and it's coming to PS3, PS4, PC, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.
David Jaffe took to the stage to reveal the first title from his indie studio, The Bartlet Jones Supernatural Detective Agency. Drawn to Death is a 4-player arena shooter, developed in collaboration with Sony San Diego. The selling point is a hand-drawn style, meant to be representation of sketches in a high-school notebook. It's certainly an imaginative idea, and the arenas change as the kid draws new objects in the background. Drawn to Death is coming to PlayStation 4, with no release date currently.
No Man's Sky still looks like hot sex on a platter. Developer Hello Games showed off the title twice: last night at the Game Awards and today at PlayStation Experience. Everything still looks amazing, even if we're no closer to figuring out the gameplay thrust of the title beyond exploration. (That second video is 60fps, by the way.)
Supermassive Games got to briefly show off its PS4 horror title, Until Dawn. The game features actress Hayden Panettiere as Samantha in what feels like a video game version of the Saw films. What's the release window? 2015. Get used to that number.
What Remains of Edith Finch is a new not-horror title from Giant Sparrow, the folks who brought you The Unfinished Swan. The game details the haunted stories of a cursed family in the state of Washington. The stories span from the 1900s to the modern day and each one ends in the death of a family member. You play Edith Finch, who's trying to find out why she's the last member of her family left alive. It's coming to PlayStation 4 in 2016.
Developer Dodge Roll and publisher Devolver Digital showed off Enter the Gungeon, a dungeon-crawling game with top-down shooter DNA. Despite the sprite-based gameplay, the game is only coming to PS4 in 2015. Probably one of the most-enjoyable looking titles in the entire presentation.
Skytorn is the latest game from the Vancouver-based IndieHouse. It's a procedurally-generated Metroidvania-style title, not unlike Discord Games' Chasm. The heroine wields a shovel, so if you're hungry for more shovel-based platforming, you can have this and Shovel Knight on PS4. Sadly, there's no release window.
Tripwire Interactive has announced that its upcoming sequel, Killing Floor 2, is also coming to PlayStation 4 in 2015. The title was previously announced for PC and SteamOS.
Guacamelee developer Drinkbox Studios is bringing Severed to PlayStation Vita. Think of it like Infinity Blade for Vita in Drinkbox Studios' great art style. The game is coming in Spring 2015.
Atlus also reaffirmed that Persona 5 was coming to PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3 in 2015. In the US. No localization wait for us this time folks!
A Great Vintage
Stop the presses! Suikoden II is coming to the PlayStation Store on December 9. Wrap your heads around that amazing news.
Final Fantasy VII is also coming to PlayStation 4, though it's not a full remaster, it's just the PC version. You could feel the excitement in the presentation dropping to almost nothing.
Double Fine had a pair of great announcements. In addition to Grim Fandango Remastered for PlayStation 4 and Vita (coming in January 2015), studio head Tim Schafer revealed that Day of the Tentacle: Special Edition is also coming to both platforms. Broken Age is coming to PS4 and Vita, with a release date timed to coincide with the second act's release on PC. No firm release date for Day of the Tentacle or Broken Age was given.
Sony and Sega delivered amazing news in the form of Yakuza 5 coming to North America and Europe finally! The game came out for PS3 in Japan in 2012 and it's finally heading to our shores. I think both Sony and Sega realize their game won't sell a ton of copies, but it's great they're bringing them to fans regardless. Yakuza 4 and Yakuza: Dead Souls are also available on the PlayStation Store today.
Media Molecule is bringing Tearaway Unfolded to PlayStation 4 with brand-new features for the Dual Shock 4 controller. If you're wondering why the game is in the old games category, it's because Tearaway Unfolded is an "expanded retelling" of the original Vita game. It's coming in 2015.
Resogun is coming to PlayStation 3 and Vita soon, for $14.99. It will run at 30fps on those platforms, unlike the PS4 version's 60fps. And it's cross-buy, so if you have it on PS4, you'll have it on PS3 and Vita. The Defenders expansion pack for the game is coming in early 2015 for $4.99.
The First Time on PlayStation
Shovel Knight, the Game Awards winner for Indie Game of the Year, is coming to PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, and Vita! Kratos is jumping over as a character in the game, but is he playable or a new boss? We'll see. The game is cross-save active, but there's no word if cross-buy is on the table as well. 2015!
Super Time Force Ultra is headed to PlayStation 4 and Vita. Capy Games has added Sony Worldwide Studios President Shuhei Yoshida as a playable character. Coming in 2015, like everything else.
Bastion is coming to PS4 and Vita in 2015, and it will support cross-buy. Cross-save is still on the table.
Metal Slug 3 is coming to PlayStation 4 and Vita, and you can vote for the next NeoGeo Classic to come to both platforms. You're voting for Garou: Mark of the Wolves right?
Super Stardust Ultra is coming to PS4 in early 2015 for $14.99.
Loadout comes to PS4 on December 16, 2015. It's still free-to-play.
Open-world survival horror title The Forest is also making the jump from PC to PlayStation 4. No release window was given.
Orcs Must Die Unchained is coming to PS4 in 2015, making the series return trip to console since Orcs Must Die release on Xbox Live Arcade. in 2011.
All in all, this was an E3-caliber presentation from Sony. There's a great deal of great stuff coming to PlayStation 4 and Vita over the course of 2015, and it's likely that the company saved some stuff for June. If anything, the keynote was a definite "We hear you" in regards to the lack of PlayStation 4 exclusive heading into the holidays.