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E3 Predictions – Sony Press Conference

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With this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo fast approaching, the time has come for us to make a few predictions about what we expect to see and what we hope will be announced in Los Angeles during the most important time of the year for the video game industry.

Here are some of our predictions for what Sony will show during the PlayStation E3 2015 Press Conference:

Uncharted 4 - A Thief's End

Tony Polanco – Executive Editor

Despite the $399 mic drop of 2013, Sony’s last two press conferences have left a lot to be desired. This year puts the company in an interesting position considering that it has the most expensive console on the market with its PlayStation 4. Let’s not forget the bigger problem of Sony lacking any big AAA first party titles for the holiday season. So what will Sony actually show during E3?

The company may not have many first party games coming out this year, but I expect them to drop news on what they will be releasing early next year. The fourth entries in the God of War and Uncharted franchises will be on display for sure. We can expect hands-on gameplay from the latter and hopefully some from the former. The delayed Ratchet & Clank game will get some screen time as well. I also expect to see what certain first party studios like Media Molecule, Sucker Punch, Japan Studio and Polyphony Digital have been up to these past few months/years.

This leads into Project Morpheus. One possible reason for ‘the great first party silence’ is that many of these studios are making their games Morpheus compatible. Sony needs to convince the wider gaming audience that VR is a viable way to play video games. I can think of no better way to accomplish this than by having actual first party studio created games running on the device. Sony has invested a lot of money into Morpheus so I expect it to get significant stage time.

Sony has talked about how they want to highlight their third-party line-up and we’ll see that during the show. Star Wars: Battlefront will be on heavy display, as will Batman: Arkham Knight, Hellblade, and of course, Street Fighter V (those last two being console exclusives to PS4). The one thing I’m expecting to see is something about the rumored deal Sony has with Activision and Call of Duty. If Sony can secure timed exclusive DLC for CoD on PS4, that alone may help them win the holiday season.

Sony really is the wild card this year as no one knows exactly what they will or won’t show during their presentation. It has the biggest chance to be the best conference of 2015 or possibly the most boring, especially if they begin to dilute their presentation with TV apps or something else that isn’t gaming related. Sony may be on top of the world now but they can’t rest on their laurels much longer. They have to prove to gamers why the PlayStation brand is truly for them and they need to assuage any fears that the company has become complacent.

Street Fighter V - Ryu Hadoken

Charles Singletary – Contributing Editor

Expectations:

At this point, Sony has been generally quiet about their first party titles for 2015 and 2016. Much like Microsoft in the previous generation, they’ve been maximizing third party partnerships and they’ve also put their money where their mouth is with indie support. While the previous E3 was a prime example of those two ideals coming together on the main stage, this year will be hay-maker after hay-maker of first party projects with legitimate release dates.

Sony has to have learned a lesson with prematurely dropping information on high profile games. This year will not only bring announcements, but true game-play footage. Sony will briefly bolster indie support, limit third party/multi-platform presence and treat their large install base to a wealth of games to come.

Surprises:

The Last Guardian is given a release date and pre-orders go up shortly after announcing it. Sony will announce a partnership bringing Star Citizen to their console in late 2016. This next one is truly wishful thinking and would likely have to be fully funded by Sony, but I’d like the reboot of the Onimusha franchise into the darker format of the original title. A new lead would be acceptable.

god of war collection

Stephanie Burdo – Contributing Editor

There are many things I expect to see at the Sony conference this year. Without a doubt, we will see more of Uncharted 4 with a possible release date. I also expect to see the announcement of a new God of War game. This new game will follow God of War III and will be released in the Fall of 2016.

It would certainly be a surprise (and a pleasant one for that matter) if The Last Guardian was finally announced. Some speculate that with the recent dismissal of IGN’s The Last Guardian cancellation article, that the game is still in development. I, for one, disagree that it will be announced this year. With the significant build up of tension and expectations for this title, I would not doubt if it never came out. I would also be extremely surprised if a The Last of Us sequel or spin-off game were to be teased this year. I do believe one is coming, but I think it is almost too soon to tell.

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Anthony Nash – News Editor

Expectations:

Obviously, we are going to be seeing a lot of news on the upcoming God of War III remake, and probably some more info on Uncharted 4. Expect to hear a lot about third party content, and maybe even an announcement between Activision and Sony for exclusive timed DLC rights to Call of Duty: Black Ops 3.

Honestly, Sony doesn’t have to do much to stay ahead this year, so you shouldn’t expect much in the way of huge surprises. It’ll be a fairly tame conference in comparison to the other ones, as they have such a sizable lead, they don’t have to put their foot on the gas until 2016.

Where are the Games?:

While this might be the year for Xbox One first party titles, it certainly won’t be the same for Sony. They have already acknowledged that their 2015 first party lineup is pretty slim, but that shouldn’t mean we don’t see anything from these companies.

I would expect to see a lot from Sony’s known developers like Sucker Punch, Media Molecules, and Santa Monica, especially because we don’t really know what’s going on with them. We know a lot of them are busy developing games for the PS4, but we don’t know what yet. It’d be smart for Sony to start building up the hype for next year by letting some of their big dogs out of the cage.

Take the Red Pill:

I’m fairly certain we’ll see something about Project Morpheus, whether it’s a firm price or a release date. What would be nice to see is some actual content for it, as Sony has been extremely tight-lipped about the device for some time now.

Surprises:

In a perfect world, The Last Guardian would finally get announced, and I could go to bed happy that night. While that probably won’t happen, Sony still has a lot they could surprise us with like: more information on the next God of War installment, sequels to The Last of Us, and even a new Syphon Filter game! (Okay, that last one is my true wish. C’mon, Sony!).

Morpheus

Dana Abercrombie – Content Writer

Expect to see:

Sony doesn’t have anything to prove and really doesn’t need to focus on altering their console. It has already proven itself in sales and its ease for both gamers and developers. It’s PlayStation’s 20th anniversary soon, so I expect Sony to be in a celebratory mood. We will hear plenty of speeches about how innovative the company is, how well the console is selling, and a highlight reel showcasing all of our favorite games from yesteryear.

Though Sony still has a lead in the console race, the Xbox One cannot be counted out. The Xbox One beat out the PS4 in the March NPD’s and it’s possible (maybe) that Microsoft’s system could catch up and succeed. One of the ways for Sony to shut down Microsoft for good is by dropping the price of the PS4 down to a “happy dancing wallet” level. This could be announced at the event.

There will plenty of talk about Uncharted 4, the new God of War and of course, No Man’s Sky. Guerilla Games is working on a new game and I see it being the presentation’s biggest highlight. The holidays are coming so there will be plenty of hype about how we should spend our time with PlayStation. Exclusive content will make an appearance, which will include new Destiny DLC and the Bloodborne expansion pack.

The Morpheus headset will be on display along with a slew of demos showing off the device’s features. While I don’t expect to see many games for it, three or four title announcements would be nice.

Surprise to See:

Vita still exists, dammit! I want more Tearaway! We’ll probably just get Tearaway for the PS4 though. I’m not expecting there to be any major announcements (if any) for Sony’s handheld-that-could-have, but anything is possible.

Speaking of possibilities – just close your eyes for a second and imagine a darkened auditorium filled with thousands of excited people. All eyes are glued to the screens… and then, these two words show up: Silent Hills.

Can you imagine the screams? You can just feel your ears popping, and eardrums exploding just by thinking about it. People would literally have heart attacks in their chairs and the internet will be like “screw the Kardashians, Silent Hills just broke us.” We are talking about surprises and while we all know that this game is dead in the water, I’m a strong believer in holding onto hope. Hope keeps me alive, hope keeps me hoping.

No Man's Sky

Chris Sealy – Content Writer

Sony will be coming into E3 2015 a little light on the game front from current perspectives, but I don’t believe they will have a disappointing show at all. In fact, I think Sony is fueled by the momentum that PlayStation 4 has gained in the market and will have to pull the covers off everything near and far to show us at E3 that they are still providing a reason for current owners to keep playing and also for new customers to get on board.

First, Project Morpheus has been a code name and behind closed doors for far too long. It may be time to give it a proper title and a big showing at this year’s E3 conference. It’ll probably have a two-word name with the word PlayStation preceding a term like “Vision,” “View,” or something along those lines. PlayStation Vision actually sounds kind of cool, but this is just my guess.

In the games department, it’s probably okay to speculate that we’ll be seeing a new installment of God of War. Whether this will be God of War 4 or a side story like God of War: Ascension remains to be seen. Also with Uncharted 4 being confirmed but delayed to 2016, we will probably see more game-play (possibly multi-player?) and features shown.

No Man’s Sky will get shown extensively this year. At this point, live game-play footage will be crucial, and a definitive launch date of 2015 has to be announced. Media Molecule will probably take the stage as well to show off something new, maybe even a title tied to Project Morpheus?

Polyphony Studios will probably grace us with some CG of awesome cars in a Gran Turismo 7 reveal. Not sure if that will be a 2016 release, but it would still nice to see something of it. Guerilla Games is rumored to be working on something else besides Killzone, so that will probably have its time in front of the curtain as well.

As for the PS Vita, since Sony just declared it a “legacy” console, I highly doubt they will spend any time, if any, mentioning it. They may show a couple of third party titles in a highlight reel of games coming out in the next year or so. Sadly, 2015 marks the end of the Vita.

Speaking of third parties, Sony may have snagged some timed exclusivity with Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 DLC content. If that is true, then expect them to pimp that at the show.

untildawn

Jakejames Lugo – Associate Editor

Some of what Sony has in store for everyone at E3 is shrouded in mystery. We all know that games like Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End and Until Dawn will have some presence at the show despite not coming out in 2015. But there are some studios under the PlayStation umbrella that have been intriguingly quiet for a long time now, so it may be the right time to finally show what they have been working on.

Developers like Guerilla Games have something in the works that is rumored to be an open-world style of game, while others like Bend Studio have been silent since their work on Uncharted: Golden Abyss. These surprises may be Sony’s key to wowing the audience with announcements of new titles for PlayStation 4.

Most importantly for Sony however is the need for more clarification on things like Project Morpheus and the future of PlayStation Vita. Those that have stuck with the PlayStation ecosystem need to be reassured that their faith in Sony has not been in vain. The hardest to sell here is Morpheus, as it is not only an uncertain technological gamble in homes, but also has no real games to showcase the technology. Morpheus needs titles that will convince consumers that spending their hard earned dollars on it won’t end up the same way that PlayStation Vita has.

Speaking of Vita, the same principle applies to it. Sony has given the impression that it’s quietly stopping support for the handheld, despite so many games being offered on PlayStation Plus and through indie developers. This doesn’t bode well for those who wanted great experiences from Sony IPs, and needs to finally be addressed in some fashion. A price drop, a new bundle with PlayStation 4 or anything remotely similar would be helpful at this point.

E3 is won with a strong showing of games all around, both in first party and third party support. Big name titles like Street Fighter V, Batman: Arkham Knight, and even Final Fantasy XV all have major power in the minds of gamers around the world. Sony will no doubt have some of these titles on display and getting a lot of stage time.

This year’s E3 doesn’t give Sony many opportunities to show up the competition with major mic-dropping moments. Even the slightest possibility of a surprise announcement of Team Ico’s elusive The Last Guardian getting a release doesn’t absolve Sony from needing to prove to gamers why they should be playing titles on a PlayStation 4 and not an Xbox One. Having solid explanations about playing third party titles on PlayStation platforms and showing new great first party games coming out soon is the key to Sony having a successful conference, not announcing that a game stuck in ten years of development hell is finally coming out.

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These are some of our thoughts but what do you guys think Sony will show during their press event? Make sure to let us know in the comments below.

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