Does Sony have the goods to go one more round?
Last year was the year PlayStation gamers had finally been waiting for… the year Sony finally got it. All the miscues of the PS3 and Vita launches appeared to be a thing of the past. When Sony ended their 2013 E3 press conference I heard something that wasn’t a common thing to hear once a press conference ends. Cheering. Applause. People in genuine awe.
How does Sony follow up in 2014? A year after their figurative microphone drop at the LA Sports Arena and eight months after the most successful console launch in gaming, no doubt when the lights go up on June 9 Sony can only win by doing one thing. They have to show gamers why they bought a PS4. Sure we’ll see PlayStation Now, Project Morpheus, and some sales statistics for the buyers in the crowd; but the only way Sony will have a repeat of last year is to roll out the games. Whether they’re for Vita or PS4, gamers just need those teases that get them heading over to Amazon for pre-orders.
So how’s it all going to go down?
We’re still two weeks away from the press conference but here’s how we think it’ll all go down:
The lights will come up and Sony PlayStation’s new president will take the stage say something about former PlayStation boss Jack Tretton and then go into some sales figures about Sony.
We’ll see a montage of all the things we know Drive Club, The Order 1886, EA Sports games, MLB 14, Call of Duty, Batman, and some unannounced Vita games.
Then the focus will be on PS3 for about 5min to announce the PS3 price drop. It only makes sense to liquidate the hardware that’s already on its way out the door. Plus the move will help the system improve their overall numbers versus the Xbox 360. It could prove to be a cash cow for Sony with PS4 converts being able to see just how many free PS3 games they leave on the table through the Instant Game Collection on PS Plus.
We’ll get into some Vita action with the announcement of an exclusive game based on one of the PlayStation’s key franchises. The frontrunners for this would be Infamous or something to do with Last of Us. We know games like Uncharted: Golden Abyss were done by other studios like Sony Bend, so these games don’t necessarily have to be done by Sucker Punch or Naughty Dog.
Right up against this Vita announcement will be a service announcement to remind us all that PlayStation Now is still coming. The beta recently hit the PS4 system and we’ll have our thoughts on it after E3. Sony looks to still be on track for a summer launch to their service. So what better place to announce pricing and a launch date than when the entire world is listening.
Now we’ll get into the gooey filling of the presentation, the PS4 games. No there will not be a price drop announcement for PS4. But, Sony will show new gameplay for The Order and Drive Club. Now recently Naughty Dog had some noteworthy exits in Uncharted writer Amy Henning and game director Justin Richmond. It only serves Sony to address this controversy and reassure both the general public and buyers that the game is still very much in production. Perhaps the new creative team will be announced and maybe those names will be big. Think, God of War and Last of Us big.
With Sony recently trademarking the name “Kill Strain” we can expect to hear more about what that might be. If we had to bet, then it would be safe to venture that this will be a brand new IP and not a new Syphon Filter game. Last year Sony told us every first party studio is working on a PS4 title. We still have yet to find out what studios like Sony Bend, Media Molecule, San Diego Studios are working on and while they might not have releases in 2014, PlayStation needs to start delivering on the good will they built on the PS4 launch (which had no triple-A titles when it launched). Even if the games don’t come till 2015, we need to see them and we need to see them sooner rather than later.
Yes, we will see Project Morpheus. This will come in a pitch to sell the PS4 on being future proof. There won’t be much in the way of on stage demos but we’ll be sure to get a tease from at least one studio about a VR specific game.
It’s a safe bet we’ll see Bungie on stage talking and showing off new stuff from Destiny. In an effort to build maximum hype levels, they’ll announce the Destiny beta will go live that day.
Will Sony close with the “oh and one more thing”? Probably. Hopefully that will come in the form of a new God of War game, but if this is the only previously unannounced game we see then that will be a fail for Sony. The way PlayStation insures the level of dominance they built at last years show is to have most of those first party studios tell us what’s behind their doors.
We’ll have up to the minute updates from the press conference and you can also watch the live stream through your PlayStation.