Sony at E3 2015: the 11 most important announcements
Spoiler: The Last Guardian is here116
Microsoft's events are a bit of a wild card. Will it bore you to tears with statistics or show you a wild HoloLens demo? Sony tends to follow a set strategy: overwhelm you with game after game after game. Tonight, that meant some long-expected sequels, a few re-showings of known titles, and a handful of big surprises.
Nothing was bigger than The Last Guardian, which showed up in the very first minutes of the keynote. There were bright spots after that announcement, but its sheer magnitude meant that everything went a little bit downhill from there. Unfortunately, the most exciting games are either coming at a nebulous point next year or don't have release dates at all. So no matter how exciting the games, the payoff will be a long time coming.
Oh my god, it's The Last Guardian
The Last Guardian — which concludes the trilogy of Ico and Shadow of the Colossus — has been rumored at every E3 for years, and it's never actually appeared... until now. It was a bombshell of an event opener for Sony, with a short, highly cinematic gameplay demo. More incredibly, the game has a release date, albeit a worryingly vague one: it's coming to PlayStation 4 next year.
Post-apocalyptic mecha-dino bow hunting
That's essentially the premise of Horizon: Zero Dawn, based on the demonstration we got at E3. There's no release date, but it's being developed by Killzone studio Guerrilla Games.
Yet another Hitman
I understand that the Hitman series does actually have a fairly complex body of lore, but its trailers are all virtually interchangeable. I'd be hard-pressed to tell you how this latest iteration differs from any of the previous ones, except that I think Agent 47 is wearing a hat and there are terrifying fashion models involved. Is that enough to sell you on it? It had better be.
Street Fighter V, early next year
Street Fighter V probably won't exactly be a revolutionary new title, but it's a welcome continuation of the classic fighting game series, which has been making do with expansions to Street Fighter IV for the past several years. The game should be arriving by March of 2016, and an open preorder beta is coming exclusively to PlayStation 4 in July.
No Man's Sky: still really colorful
No Man's Sky is the kind of game that is both incredibly exciting and a little worrying. Will a whole universe of procedurally generated planets actually be fun to explore? What do you do on them, anyways? The 2015 E3 demo didn't give us satisfactory answers to those questions, but we're getting closer, hopefully. Unfortunately, there's still no release date, though one is coming "soon."
An artistic fever dream
Look, how would you describe Dreams, the new project from LittleBigPlanet developer Media Molecule? It's like a surreal art and animation studio that uses a PlayStation controller and produces results you can share with friends. That's about all we can say for now.
A big expansion for Destiny
Destiny, the massively multiplayer shooter from Bungie, has gotten a couple of expansions, but The Taken King is supposed to be the biggest so far. Among other things, it will include a new map, new gear, and a new strike mission when it comes out in September.
Final fantasy 7 and Shenmue
As if The Last Guardian weren't enough, it's a very good year for Japanese game fans. For one thing, Final Fantasy 7 is being remade, though that's just about all we know. (Well, except that the remake is green. Very, very green. And that it's coming first, but not necessarily exclusively, to the PlayStation 4.) For another, the Shenmue series has a third installment up on Kickstarter. It's not exactly a guarantee, but there's a... pretty good chance fans will fund it to victory.
Sony's internet TV station expands
PlayStation Vue, Sony's promising internet TV service, is moving beyond its initial three-city reach and into San Francisco and Los Angeles. More interestingly, it's going to start letting users subscribe to specific channels instead of buying package deals like most paid TV services.
Project Morpheus will do something
It's about time to start getting some real news for Project Morpheus, the PlayStation-based VR headset that's coming out next year. Unfortunately, Sony wasn't forthcoming at tonight's event, except to say that it hopes VR will be a social experience.
Uncharted 4 confirms Nathan Drake is a total jerk
Seriously, he's just the worst.