PlayStation fans expected a lot from Sony at this year’s E3 considering that 2016 was a huge year as far as game announcements went. Between 2016’s E3, Tokyo Game Show and PlayStation Experience, gamers saw amazing trailers for games like God of War, Days Gone, Death Stranding and The Last of Us 2. E3 2017 however was filled mostly with games we already knew were coming. In fact the entire showcase was an hour of just trailers.
The press conference began with another live musical number to set the mood. In no way as epic as last year’s live orchestra and choir signaling the announcement of the new God of War game. Instead the showcase opened with a gameplay trailer for Uncharted: The Lost Legacy. Not bad but did not generate the ovation and frantic cheers of last year’s God of War opening (see both videos below).
We did get a new God of War gameplay trailer that announced an early 2018 release window. There were also new trailers for Days Gone, Spider-Man, Horizon DLC and a new remake of Shadow of the Colossus. Sony also dedicated a nice chunk of its showcase to new titles for the PlayStation VR and as a VR owner it was very nice to see that more diverse software is on its way to VR and not just collections of mini games. I was shocked to see that Skyrim is making its was to PSVR but not Fallout 4 VR but at the same time it’s time for something new from Bethesda anyway.
There also felt like there was something missing. Like Sony cut entire chunks out of its showcase for some odd reason. The focus by Sony to just show games and not bog us down with rhetoric was great. However, where were the other studios with their announcements and live game demos that are a big part of these press conferences? PlayStation Haven’s Creative Director “Cammie” noticed that there were seats labeled for live game demoing that were never filled. I also noticed that Knack director and PS4 architect Mark Cerny was lined up at the door to enter the showcase with myself and the other members of the press in attendance. When he was finally escorted in ahead of us I noticed he was sent back out to wait with us again. Something just felt off behind the scenes.
Overall PlayStation’s Media Showcase did its job of letting gamers know what to expect even though we were already informed of most of it last year. The mention of only the PS4 and PSVR throughout the night only seemed to confirm the Vita will be taken off of life support soon. The big games that were absent from the showcase is a very hard to ignore. Hideo Kojima had already confirmed prior to E3 that Death Stranding would not be at E3 so that his team could continue to work on it but it was odd to see Kojima in the audience and not have some kind of new trailer shown. There were also several titles that were playable by the press backstage that did not get shown off during the actual press conference such as Dissidia, Ni No Kuni 2 and Knack 2.
Here’s hoping that next year’s showcase will bring back the excitement of past shows and bring all new titles to light instead of just more sequels.
Final Score 7.75/10