You know, it used to be that we gamers got E3 each year, and that was it. A little taste of what was coming, and then another year of rumors and leaks. That’s not the case anymore though, now we get tons of press conferences and keynotes. Some are great, others are just okay.
This last week was packed with both the Game Awards and the PlayStation Experience 2015. Since most of us are working gamers, I took time out of my busy schedule of playing Fallout 4 to watch these big events and take note of the biggest highlights. I know, I know, I’m a hero, but let’s not dwell on that.
Here are the top highlights from both of these massive gaming events:
The Game Awards 2015
Since they happened first, we’ll start with the Game Awards. This event has replaced the Spike Video Game Awards and is streamed exclusively online. Fine by me, I always thought the VGAs were a little bloated and pompous.
Now, last years Geoff Keighley put together the show and it was just okay. This year though he did a much better job. Let’s dive into the big moments for PS4 gamers and gamers in general.
1. A Speech From This Year’s Trending Gamer: Greg Miller
I have to start with this because it sets the perfect tone for the rest of this article. Greg Miller, previously of IGN fame, has moved on to new horizons and this year he won the Trending Gamer award. First of all, that’s a victory for gamers everywhere since he’s way more authentic than the other nominees any day of the week.
He took the podium and delivered a whopper of a speech that was dedicated to the people who work long hours making the games we love. He called out Nicole Tan, a random name he spotted in the credits of Tomb Raider, and thanked her, along with all the people in the industry. Not gonna lie, it brought a tear to my eye. Check out the video above.
2. Reggie’s Tribute to Satoru Iwata
I know you’re here for the PS4 announcements, but we need to take a moment to let the feels hit us once more. While we’re all Sony fans here, I think we can all agree that the world lost someone special when Nintendo’s own Satoru Iwata passed away earlier this year.
The president of Nintendo America, Reggie Fils-Aime, took the stage for a powerful and heartfelt speech dedicated to his boss and his friend. Okay gamers, wipe away the tears, it’s time to check out the big PS4 announcements and winners.
3. Psychonauts 2 (funding campaign) Announced!!!!!!!
Sorry for all of the exclamation points. If you’ve read my author profile here on PS4 experts (there’s a link at the bottom of the page) then you’ll know that the 2005 platformer Psychonauts is one of my favorite games of all time. With an announcement out of left-field, a teaser was shown for a sequel!
I was literally screaming and howling like a madman when this teaser was played. Go ahead, watch it real quick:
Now, the game needs to be funded through a campaign on Fig (which is like Kickstarter, but it also welcomes investors). That being said, it’s already made almost $2 million towards its $3 million goal, so I’m not too worried. If I had the money I would have just funded it myself honestly.
Ah, I’m so excited for this. I never thought it would happen, so I’m still reeling from the news. If you haven’t played the first one, do yourself a favor and fix that.
4. First Gameplay From Far Cry Primal
Ubisoft finally showed some actual gameplay from the upcoming Far Cry Primal, which is set in 10,000 B.C. Yep, we’re talking wooly mammoths, saber-tooth cats, and plenty of spears to go around.
The trailer also showed the ability to control and command the various prehistoric animals you’ll encounter, which should make up for the lack of guns and rocket launchers. It’s releasing February 23, 2016.
5. Konami Gets Owned
If you followed the development of Metal Gear Solid V, then you know about the complete and utter explosion of stupidity that resulted from Konami having an aneurism and basically kicking out one of the gaming industry’s most brilliant developers. Well, apparently they’re still holding a grudge or something equally childish because they banned Hideo Kojima from accepting his own award at the ceremony!
Yep, the lawyered up and everything. Geoff Keighly called out Konami though, and the crowd booed, as they should have. It’s not justice for what Konami did (don’t forget Silent Hills being canceled), but it’s a start.
6. Shadow Complex Remastered Announced for Consoles
Shadow Complex was a game for Xbox 360 that had the writing of Orson Scott Card and the gameplay of an exceptionally strong metroidvania style to back it up. In short? It was great, and now it’s coming to PS4 in 2016 as a remastered port.
This game set the standard for other metroidvania style games that came after it, so if you haven’t played it, be sure to check it out when it releases next year. If you have a gaming PC, you can actually download it for FREE from the game’s website until the end of December.
7. One of Uncharted 4’s Villains Revealed in New Gameplay
Some new gameplay was shown from the upcoming Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. This particular scene gave us a glimpse at one of the game’s villains: Nadine Ross. Think Michone from The Walking Dead with bigger arms and you’ve got the right idea.
Uncharted is on schedule to release next year on March 16th, 2016. If you own a copy of the Nathan Drake Collection, don’t forget that the multiplayer beta is currently underway until mid-December.
8. Telltale Teases a Batman Series
Straight of the heels of their Borderlands and Game of Thrones series, Telltale is now working on a Batman game? Oh yes, this is going to be good. They’ve shown great talent for creating new stories in established worlds.
Beyond this massive announcement, we also got confirmation on a Michone Walking Dead series from Telltale that will span three episodes.
Finally, here are the major winners from the award show:
- Best Multiplayer: Splatoon (Wii U)
- Most Anticipated Game: No Man’s Sky
- Best Narrative: Her Story (PC)
- Best Indie Game: Rocket League
- Developer of the Year: CD Projekt Red
- Best Art Direction: Ori and the Blind Forest (Xbox/PC)
- Best Performance: Her Story
Game of the Year: The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
The PlayStation Experience 2015 Highlights
The PlayStation Experience is a young event. This was only the second year after all, and while it had a few interesting moments, I felt like it was letdown compared to last year’s. Of course, you can decide for yourself because we’re about to dive into all of the highlights from the press conference!
1. New Uncharted 4 Footage
We were treated to even more Uncharted 4 footage at the event right in the beginning. This was an awesome scene where Nathan Drake is reunited with his brother in a heartfelt scene. There’s also a dialogue option which allows you to essentially choose your favorite uncharted story.
Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End is looking to be the best game yet in the series and this footage proves that.
2. The First Final Fantasy VII Footage Shown
After blowing the minds of the world with an announcement of a Final Fantasy VII remake, Square Enix brought actual footage to the stage. The game looks gorgeous, but it’s clear they are making some changes.
For starters, the combat looks like Kingdom Hearts’ real-time style instead of the original turn-based gameplay. Also, shortly after the event it was revealed that the game would be releasing in multiple parts. Not sure what that means yet, but it’s got people on edge.
3. More Battleborn News
Battleborn is the new I.P from Gearbox who are best known for their work on the Borderlands series. We’ve seen a bit of this game already, but new footage was shown as the keynote that gave us more detail on the game.
It’s looking good, and the addition of split-screen put a big smile on my face. PS4 owners get an extra character for playing in the beta (which we also get first). His name is Toby, and he’s a Penguin that drives a giant mech and quotes Oppenheimer apparently. Yep, that’s Gearbox for you. You can check out the crazy and hilarious game’s beta on PS4 on February 9th, 2016.
4. Final Character Reveals from Street Fighter V
The creator of Street Fighter took to the stage to make a ridiculous number of passive aggressive jokes about how every character reveal for his upcoming game has been leaked except for this one.
The final launch character, F.A.N.G was revealed in a trailer, along with the DLC characters for post launch content. These characters can be purchased or earned in game, which is cool. The post characters will be Alex, Guile, Balrog, Ibuki, Juri, and Urien. The game is coming February 16, 2016 exclusively to PS4.
5. Double Fine Brings New Announcements
Hot off the heels of their Psychonauts 2 announcement (YES!!!), Tim Schafer from Double Fine took the stage to talk about a March 2016 date for Day of the Tentacle Remaster, and announce that another of his classics, Full Throttle, will be remastered for PS4 as well!
He rounded out his time on stage with an announcement of a Psychonauts game for PlayStation VR called Psychonauts: In the Rhombus of Ruin. This singular announcement means that I will sell my left kidney to get a PlayStation VR now.
6. Surprise Releases Galore!
I’m going to group these together since there were several of them. These are games that were given release dates on the day of the conference (meaning they’re out now!) and a few that are confirmed to be coming soon:
7. New Ratchet and Clank Gameplay
In the spirit of remakes and remasters, new footage was shown from the Ratchet and Clank game coming to PS4. The game is a remake/reimagining of the original with new content. It’s based on the movie that’s coming out, which is turn based on the game.
Are we confused yet?
8. Rez Infinite Coming to PS4
Rez was a trippy, but fun rhythm game for the PS2 and now we have confirmation that it’s coming to PS4 in 1080p and 60 frames per second.
On top of this, it will also feature support for PlayStation VR. Now that’s going to be interesting.
9. Sony Teases Several New PlayStation VR Games
Sony seems to be embracing their whacky side with PlayStation VR. They announced several new titles for the headset:
- Eagle Flight
- Modern Zombie Taxi
- Job Simulator
- 100 Foot Robot Golf
- Ace Combat 7
I had to put the trailer for 100 Foot Robot Golf in here, sorry. The other games look great, but that one was just ridiculous.
10. Destiny Adds Sparrow Racing
I suppose you could call it an event, but owners of Destiny: The Taken King are getting access to the Sparrow Racing League starting on December 8th. Apparently it’s not a permanent feature though, it’s only available for 3 weeks.
Still, it’s free so that’s a plus.
11. Ni No Kuni 2 Announced
While Studio Ghibli won’t be working on it, Level-5 announced a sequel to Ni No Kuni entitled Ni No Kuni 2 Revenant Kingdom.
It’s coming to PS4, but we don’t have a release date yet.
12. Paragon Announced for PS4
Sony closed out their show with a CGI trailer for a new multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) game called Paragon. It’s being made by Epic Games and there’s a beta in 2016.
I don’t know, it looks cool I guess, but I expected more from Sony. Still, I got Psychonauts 2 as a possibility, so that’s plenty.
What was your favorite announcement? Were you impressed with the shows or disappointed? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Article by - Bradley Ramsey
Insert Date - 12/7/15