While the PlayStation 4 was undoubtedly one of the biggest stories at this year’s E3, there wasn’t really much in the way of new software announcements for the next generation console. A lot of the content on offer had been revealed previously, be it at Sony’s lengthy PlayStation Meeting earlier in the year, or in the run-up to the convention itself. Nevertheless, the show did play host to the unveiling of a handful of big blockbusters, both from first-party studios and third-party publishers. The question is: which reveal left you pumping the air with excitement?
Square Enix’s latest role-playing opus may have been officially doing the rounds since 2006, but Final Fantasy XV still somehow managed to find its way onto this list. Announced for the PS4 during Sony’s press conference, the stylish sequel shed its former Final Fantasy Versus XIII moniker in order to make its transition to the next generation complete. But while the title may have existed in some capacity for a while, it’s been so long since we last got a proper look at the title that we reckon that this counts as a brand new game at this point.
And what a release it’s shaping up to be. Promising a slightly more grounded setting – though one that’s clearly still rife with some unrealistic hairstyles – and a more action-centric gameplay mechanic, the title hasn’t garnered the most positive response from fans of the franchise. But despite that backlash from hardcore followers, we were impressed by the title’s realtime combat system and enormous environments. And, let’s be honest, the game looks absolutely unreal from a graphical perspective, doesn’t it?
While we probably won’t be playing this one for a while – director Tetsuya Nomura cautioned that the title may have been announced a little early in an interview with Famitsu yesterday – the first trailer for Kingdom Hearts III was still exciting. The direct sequel has been on the agenda for almost eight years now, but we weren’t expecting it to pop up during Sony’s press conference – especially not after the unveiling of Final Fantasy XV.
But rear its spiky head it did, alongside another excellent trailer. Details are scarce at the moment, but the title will plot the return of an older Sora, and will see you embark on a brand new adventure starring Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, and the rest of the crew. Expect this to boast more primary colours than your high-definition television can render. You may need to whip out your Johnny Bravo-branded sunglasses in order to properly enjoy this one.
Perhaps the biggest surprise pertaining to Mirror’s Edge 2 is that we’ll actually be playing it on a Sony branded system. Prior to the big convention, rumours suggested that Microsoft had locked down the sequel as an Xbox One exclusive, but publisher Electronic Arts clarified in a press release that the title is in development for the PlayStation 4. While the game doesn’t have a date attached to it as yet, the mere affirmation that it’s in active production is more than enough to draw our applause.
Earlier in the week, EA Labels executive Frank Gibeau described the title as an open world adventure game. The company added that it’s more of a reboot than a direct continuation of the original title, and that it will take advantage of developer DICE’s luscious Frostbite 3 engine. The company hasn’t shared a release date beyond “when it’s ready” – but that’s a statement that we can cope with now that we know that it’s actually in development.
A game that we already knew about courtesy of a couple of documentation leaks, very few associated The Order: 1886 with God of War: Ghost of Sparta developer Ready at Dawn. According to the studio, the title – which is set in an alternate history Victorian London – has been kicking around as a concept for several years, but the team’s vision is finally set to be realised on Sony’s next generation console.
While gameplay details are scarce, company co-founder Ru Weerasuriya has described the title as a third-person action adventure game. The trailer appears to hint at some kind of four-player co-operative dynamic, a trait which has prompted it to adopt the label ‘Gears of Whitechapel’. Despite this, the release’s compelling implementation of modern technologies in a historical world looks intriguing – and the confirmation that the title’s first trailer is running in-engine without any additional effects is especially exciting.
The third-person shooter that’s been on everyone’s lips since its reveal at the end of Ubisoft’s press conference, Tom Clancy’s The Division not only looks the part, but it also appears to be pushing the genre forward in some interesting ways. While much has been made of the next generation’s ability to impress from a graphical perspective, the Massive Entertainment online RPG is promising some fascinating things from a network angle.
Set in a post-pandemic New York City, the open world adventure will dynamically match you with other players, providing a connected experience without the hassle of lobbies or loading screens. It’s the potential here that’s got us most excited – dynamically joining forces with other players as you casually explore the world sounds like a fascinating gameplay proposition, and one that we’re eager to examine in more detail when the title deploys in 2014.
What was your favourite PS4 announcement at E3 2013? Were you tickled by the latest batch of indie games, or was it the big blockbusters that caught your attention? Let us know in the comments section below.
What was your favourite PS4 announcement at E3 2013? (61 votes)
Final Fantasy XV
Kingdom Hearts III
Mirror’s Edge 2
The Order: 1886
Tom Clancy’s The Division
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