In my opinion, you won’t be enthralled by Sony’s upcoming events.
Another wave of teasers and revelations have been shown at the PlayStation State of Play event.
Ghostwire: Tokyo released its last teaser before its release, Valkyrie Elysium was unveiled as the next entry in a long-forgotten RPG series and Returnal possibly stole the show with its planned co-op expansion.
With so many releases, there are certain to be some world premieres. So, what was it about the experience that was so uninspiring to me?
There’s a good chance that the fact that I was viewing it at 10pm while converting the major announcements into news items could have anything to do with it. Mixing business with pleasure is usually a bad idea.
As a matter of fact, my lacklustre response to these showcase broadcasts speaks more to the character of these games than to the games themselves. The format has been adopted by all three of the major console manufacturers.
Every one of them has the same goal: to draw attention to their console’s most exciting new releases while sandwiching less exciting games in between the big ones in order to keep the excitement going.
The gradual decline of E3 has basically put a stop to the practise of game publishers saving all of their major announcements until the middle of the year. Corporations are shifting away from centralised scheduling in favour of frequent, seasonal updates because of the pandemic’s mandated distance.
The marketing excitement can be built all year long and particularly customised to each publisher’s release timetable, so there’s no need to wait until June.
That’s fantastic news for us gamers. A steady stream of trailers will be released throughout the year, rather than a sudden barrage of announcements from publishers. As with any other kind of media, it is customary to reserve the most significant news for major conferences.
Just a week after the last State of Play, the most current Nintendo Direct was shown, which was televised four weeks later. There are a lot of previews being shown.
You can never have enough actors or programmes.
However, the material is being diluted at that pace. It had already decided that I would not watch the most recent episode of State of Play. To my disappointment, Sony’s press conference didn’t provide any new information on its next-generation virtual reality headgear, PlayStation VR 2, or any new titles from its Japanese publishers (which would have tickled my fancy). Sony did a good job of preparing me for the occasion by reassuring me that I shouldn’t become too enthusiastic.
That isn’t always the case, though. A few of its previous showcases have gotten me as excited as any of the E3s of old, like the September 2019 State of Play, in which the release date of The Last of Us Part 2 was revealed, the mega June 2020 showcase, which revealed nearly the entire PlayStation 5’s first-party lineup, or the September 2020 show, in which God of War: Ragnarök was first teased.
There is no guarantee that every programme will achieve such levels, though. The present schedule of previews is just too frequent for each one to deliver the same impact as a major showcase. Players have too many interests, and there aren’t enough blockbuster games in development, to keep every fan excited for more. However, many people were excited to get a sneak peek at the Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin demo. Last year, when I saw Clank’s gleaming head reflected in rays of light for the first time, I shrieked with joy, and I’m sure they were too.
Focused and meticulous
The current industry approach of shorter, more frequent showcases leaves consumers unsatisfied every time our favourite game or genre doesn’t get a look-in? As long as the format isn’t changed by Sony and the like.
Publishers are able to be more creative with their showcases since there are more of them. This year’s February State of Play was devoted completely to Gran Turismo 7, spending half an hour exploring the game’s mechanics and gameplay in remarkably fine-grained fashion. At its special demonstration, PlayStation 5’s haptic feedback technology and 3D spatial audio were used extensively, as well as the more obscure parts of the game’s weather modelling, as well as its multiple game modes and automobile selections.
For racing fans, it was precisely what they were looking for in terms of a full preview, but at a degree of detail that wouldn’t normally be offered in a promotional webcast. First-party developers now have the chance to create promotional content that is tailored to their unique target demographic, rather than the wider gaming community. If done correctly, it has the potential to provide more educational broadcasts that go deeper into the nitty-gritty details and gameplay choices that gaming enthusiasts need.
Those who were disappointed with the most recent PlayStation State of Play need not despair. It’s unrealistic to expect every Sony presentation to enthral you. As a substitute, let’s hope that Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo see the value of consistency and invest more time and resources into upcoming releases than they otherwise would have. Their own exposes might be devalued by concentrating on how many presentations they make rather than how good they are.