After this section, it's all about games. But basically, and given we still have to get through Nintendo, Microsoft definitely won E3 bare a Nintendo showstopper. Sony's show picked up in the middle, but its start and end was weird from a presentation perspective.
For example, Sony started its show within a church which subsequently made sense with The Last of Us: Part II (which I'll get to big time below). But then we had a ten minute break before getting into another location where the rest of the show happened. It was weird, jarring and in fact just bad pacing on Sony's part, a massive surprise considering how brilliant it has been in regards to pacing the past few years.
Even now, my mind is still full of fuck - a tiny bit of that is Death Stranding, but a majority of it is that jarring ten minutes between The Last of Us: Part II and the rest of the show. And even the end, it just ended abruptly. We got a Spider-Man demo, we got a montage and then... that was it? Even after, there was a presence of a ton of games that should have been in the show. For example, they showed Dreams on the official PlayStation stream and on Keighley's YouTube show. They had a new Destiny 2 Forsaken trailer which is very pivotal to the lore of Destiny regarding one particular character. They showed Concrete Genie from PixelOpus, announced last year at Paris Games Show, for the first since its unveil on Keighley's show.
THEY UNVEILED A BRAND NEW PLAYSTATION VR GAME ON THE OFFICIAL PLAYSTATION POST-SHOW FROM JAPAN STUDIOS AND FROM. FUCKING. SOFTWARE.
Every minute that passes as I just write this intro, my estimation of the show just goes down.
This was a badly thought out show. Content wise, great. But from an actual presentation, this was the worst Sony show in a long time.
With that said, lets talk games. And those were great despite everything else.
If you've known me for the past five years - or you listened to my episode of My Favourite Game at least - you'll know The Last of Us is, well, my favourite game. Ever.
And I was certain, and even wanted it to be so, that it would be a one-and-done game because it left in a perfect place, even if it made financial sense to do a sequel from a critical and sales perspective from the first game.
Even after its PSX 2016 unveil, I was mostly convinced, but I still had a few doubts. Those doubts still remained after last year's Paris Games Week trailer, and especially so after a brutal out of context scene sequence.
After its first gameplay showing tonight, any doubts I had were well and truly gone.
For one: THE FIRST EVER GAY KISS IN AN E3 TRAILER AND AT AN E3 PRESS CONFERENCE AND ESPECIALLY AT A MAJOR FIRST-PARTY E3 PRESS CONFERENCE AND GAMES ARE NOW OFFICIALLY QUEER NOW AND THERE'S NOTHING YOU CAN DO TO STOP THAT NO DON'T @ ME OR DO I DON'T CARE THE QUEER COMMUNITY IS NOW LEGION AND WE'RE TAKING OVER YOUR GAMES NOW SO DEAL WITH IT. GAMES? MORE LIKE GAAAAAYMES AM I RIGHT AM I RIGHT?
Also, we finally found out who Westworld's Shannon Woodward, brought into the project soon after its reveal, is playing: SAID QUEER WOMAN WHO ELLIE KISSED TONIGHT. Woodward plays Dina, but but we don't know nout else. There is a E3 Colosseum panel for the game happening tomorrow, though, so we should know more then.
Secondly, the gameplay just seems like it's tighter than it was before with the first game, even just down to the smallest detail. Some of it was probably made just for the demo, but for the most part, it seems leagues above the first game on that aspect. Not to mention, the graphical upgrade, which feels like it's on a new engine when in fact it's still the same engine made for Uncharted 4 and The Lost Legacy, but with upgrades.
Any doubts I had were well and truly gone. And I'm ready for what's to come.
And all fanboyish/jokey talk aside, having a queer relationship in a massive sequel from one of the most reknown games of all time, made by the flagship developer of the console market leader is a big fucking deal for representation. The fact we seen this during Pride month is nothing short of incredible and a massive moment. And with Sony and Ubisoft showing off queer relationships, or mentioning the possibility of queer relationships depending on players choices (Assassin's Creed Odyssey), in their games, this should be a massive step forward for what should be now the norm, not the exception.
TAKE ME, KOJIMA, I AM YOURS
We finally saw Death Stranding gameplay. We finally saw real-time gameplay. And it left more questions than answers. It wasn't a trailer that was full of action compared to maybe the previous trailers, or at least it wasn't until towards the end. But it started giving us a few clearer answers to what the game is about from a gameplay perspective.
And I loved it. Straight up I loved it.
The trailer also provided the announcement of two new actors to the game: Blue is the Warmest Colour and Spectre's Lea Sydoux and The Six Million Dollar Man and The Bionic Woman's Lindsay Wagner, with Sydoux's character playing the partner (?) of Norman Reedus's character... who somehow at the end swallows a maggot for some reason.
For Wagner's character, we see her standing on the beach awashed with whales from the very first trailer two years ago with little else to gather from it.
Still no date. But the pieces are starting to come together, albeit now dumped on with more than half a dozen more pieces that now needs to be figured out in regards to where they fit.
Whatever's next? I'm all for the ride.
YOU DID IT
Three years ago, Capcom announced in a brief video that after fan demand that it was happening. It said in three words, "We do it": a Resident Evil 2 remake.
Three years later, after near fan fervor, Capcom did it. REmake 2 was shown for the first time and looks stufucking pendous. Remade from the ground up using the RE Engine used for Resident Evil 7, REmake 2 is set for release on January 25. And as someone who has not played the series beyond a good bulk of 4 and 5 and a teeny bity of 6 and Revelations 2 respectively, I'm all in for it - I have 0, 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, Rev 1 and 2 and pre-RE7 VR demo Kitchen sitting on my PS4 digitally, so not like I don't have plenty to dig into ahead of its release.
Now, say, Capcom, do you fancy doing a REmake 3?
- Some sort of Black Ops 4 maps thing was announced during the lull after The Last of Us Part II demo and I honestly can't remember the specifics. Also, they made Black Ops III a special PS Plus bonus free game drop and even then, I can't wholeheartedly recommend you even play it then. Matter of fact, just avoid it.
- They showed a Destiny 2: Forsaken trailer during the break as well and they killed Nathan Fillion. September 4 for that.
- Ghost of Tsushima's first gameplay was shown and my god was it beautiful looking, but the gameplay was a little less than I was expecting. Still, it has my attention. That said, it badly needs a Japanese dub for the western version because I do not want to play this game in English.
- You didn't even need to see the Remedy Entertainment logo to see its game was being shown. All before the game's name and who was actually making it and publishing it came up. Control, the game formerly known as P7 from within the Finnish studio itself, is coming next year from 505 Games. It sees you play as Jesse Faden in a sort of futuristic supernatural thriller built on upgraded tech from the Quantum Break engine (hence why it was easy to distinguish it was Remedy's game). You know what? Here's the trailer. It's worth a watch.
Now, not to put pressure on you after just announcing your next thing, but can we have P8 be Alan Wake 2? Please?
- Trover Saves the Universe from Rick and Morty co-creator Justin Roland and yeah, alright, I'll bite. It looks alright. No date.
- A Kingdom Hearts III trailer with Pirates of the Caribbean. Can Goofy tell that abusive piece of shit Johnny Depp to fuck off? Like, literally tell him to fuck off?
- Nioh 2 was announced in what probably took a little thunder away from Ghost of Tsushima. No date. Not anytime soon anyway considering Dead or Alive 6 is coming early 2019 first.
- Spider-Man got a gameplay showing for the end of the show. And then another post show on the PlayStation stream.
- Then, for the sake of fuck and not opting to show it during the actual showcase, they unveiled a new PSVR game called Déraciné from Japan Studio and From Software directed by Miyazaki on the PlayStation post-show stream. Here's the trailer.
- And then for more batshittery, Dreams got demoed during Geoff Keighley's stream and on the official PlayStation post-show stream along with little bits inbetween the games shown at the Showcase. Yeah, lets wrap this up.
From a pure content perspective, this was a top show. And even with the lull after The Last of Us: Part II demo, the rest of the show would have been salvaged just for that section alone.
But Sony's presentation strategy just did not pay off this year. In fact, it didn't even so much hinder it as it did shoot both kneecaps and then took a shotgun to itself and shot off both feet. The fact we didn't get to see stuff in the showcase that should have been there, such as the From Software PSVR game, Dreams and PixelOpus's Concrete Genie, games that were subsequently shown off elsewhere, my score for the show dropped by the minute as I was watching games that should have been there demoed elsewhere.
It went from an mid-to-low eight and then a low seven. And honestly, because of the above paragraph, I'm almost tempted to give this show a five. But considering some of the content on show, such as that Last of Us demo, the Death Stranding trailer, Remedy's Control and the REmake 2 reveals respectively, it saves it from going lower than it should. Or even arguably deserves.
To paraphrase the old Star Wars verbage: prey I don't alter the score further.