Sony will be unveiling not one but two new PlayStation 4 consoles at the upcoming PlayStation event on September 7th. While it has been long expected that Sony would unveil an upgraded PlayStation 4, codenamed Neo and colloquially referred to as the 4K, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that Sony will be launching a previously unannounced smaller version of the PS4 at the same event.
Naughty Dog has a reputation for making a trilogy of games (and sometimes a racing game) for a franchise on a console generation and moving onto a new IP. They did it with Crash Bandicoot on the PS1 and Jak & Daxter on the PS2. Their PlayStation 3 trilogy was the blockbuster Uncharted franchise (along with the amazing The Last of Us). However, in their first effort on the PlayStation 4, Naughty Dog went back to Uncharted for one more adventure with Nathan Drake in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End.
Most people have to go all the way to Los Angeles to try slices of upcoming games at E3. Some companies, though, have made demos of their games available to the general public so you don’t have to be one of the permitted few that are allowed to see games up close before they reach your living room. One of those companies is Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment who gave us a short, early look at their upcoming Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
The pre-E3 press conferences will wrap up with Sony’s annual event. They tend to go very big with their E3 presentations and this year looks like it will be no exception. While the PS4K/Neo won’t be at E3, their E3 presser will have a lot of big games announced and updated from both first and third-party developers. Given last year’s big announcement, this year has a lot to live up to and just might pull it off.
One of the alleged selling points of The Order: 1886 was that it was “cinematic” but it didn’t really feel like anything out of a movie other than the aspect ratio of the screen. To make a game that seems like a movie, you need to rely on more than just the visuals. Ready at Dawn missed that memo.
Supermassive Games didn’t miss that memo. They had last year’s PS4 exclusive that was noteworthy for all reason opposite to The Order: 1886. While Until Dawn could be called a cinematic game, it was cinematic because it was put together as a loving homage to 90s slasher and horror movies. It looked and acted the part and was all the better for it.
Launch window exclusives are a very specific type of game. They tend to focus more on showing off the potential of the hardware at the expense of doing anything particularly memorable in terms of gameplay and story. As such, these are titles that you can quickly find in the bargain bin after release. They’re neat for a little bit but soon forgotten when actual good games start coming out.
Take The Order: 1886, for example. I got it as on Black Friday 2015 for $10. It released for $60 back in… February 2015? That can’t be right. The PlayStation 4 launched in November 2013. How did something that was clearly designed as a system showcase not come out until some sixteen months after the console launched?
Some people call them walking simulators. The people in marketing prefer to call it interactive storytelling. The one thing that we can all agree on is that games like Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture are among the most divisive in gaming. Rapture itself has review scores ranging from 100% to 25% and is on best, worst and blandest games of 2015 lists.
I have a mixed history with walking simulators myself. While I loved The Stanley Parable, I had Gone Home figured out in about a half-hour but had to walk the experience through to the end. Where will Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture fall on the walking simulator spectrum?