Though we might not have a centralised E3 showcase this year for all the hottest gaming news and major announcements, the summer of gaming is still looking like a scorching one. In lieu of gaming’s biggest showcase most major studios are taking to their own individual conference shows over the next few weeks to give a peak at all they have behind the scenes for the year ahead.
Kicking things off is Sony with a major PlayStation State of Play update. Though it is expected that this year will be a slight off one for many studios as the effects of a year+ struggle with the pandemic catches up to the industry, PlayStation still had plenty to get us excited. We take a look at the June State of Play and give you all the quick details for what you can expect in the next year and beyond from PlayStation!
Resident Evil 4 Remake (March 24, 2023)
Starting things off with a hell of a bang, Capcom debuted the first footage of the hotly anticipated Resident Evil 4 Remake.
A favourite amongst RE fans, Resident Evil 4 takes Leon into the horrific depths of a Spanish village to rescue the President’s kidnapped daughter, only to discover unimaginable nightmares and a new endemic strain of the T-Virus. The original was a landmark for the series, hailing a new dawn for the franchise at large having ditched the fixed camera angles and opting for a more action-survival style. The atmosphere and setting of the Las Plagas village is so much of what made RE4 sing, so we can only hope that this remake, in the vein of the popular 2 and 3 remakes, will capture that same magic. Like the RE2 and 3 remakes this is a complete rework from the ground up, so even the most ardent 4 fans may still have a few surprises to see if it is anything like RE2’s use of Mr X.
It looks likely that the remake, coming March 24 2023, will only be available on PS5.
Resident Evil 8 PSVR2 Port
The Resident Evil train didn’t stop with 4; the internet’s favourite subject of horniness is back as the big vampire lady returns for an even closer and more personal examination with Resident Evil Village for the PSVR2.
The PlayStation VR2, though not yet available, was an important presence in this State of Play as the new VR hardware exclusive to the PS5 came swinging with 4 big name releases. This second iteration of PlayStation VR promises a 120hz refresh rate, 4K output and an OLED screen meaning you’ll be able to experience the horrors of Castle Dimitrescu and *that* section (you know the one) of Resident Evil Village in far too high a fidelity.
The gameplay footage showed Ethan stomping around Castle Dimitrescu with a few new tricks up his sleeve afforded to him by the flexibility of VR. Dual wielding between a shotty and a handgun, knife and gun combos, quick slashing movements; the VR’s handy interactive fidelity will give you all new control over the game and likely allow for some really fun experimentation provided the engine can stretch.
A date for RE8 port was not announced however, simply because we also don’t yet know when the PSVR2 will actually be available, nor what its (likely) high price point will be. So contain the horniness for some time, internet. It will all be worth it eventually.
Walking Dead Saints and Sinners: Retribution
Zombie games and VR just seem to make sense together, so what zombie IP would be better to get for the PSVR2’s debut than AMC’s The Walking Dead. Walking Dead Saints and Sinners: Retribution looks to have you stomping through Atlanta fending off the undead hordes as best as you can. Thankfully it seems you have a handy arsenal at your disposal as the gameplay footage showed off shotguns, pistols, chainsaws, bats, knives and more.
Channel you inner Daryl Dixon and get zombie slaying in full virtual reality goodness probably sometime next year.
No Man’s Sky VR
Continuing its extensive redemption following its initial disaster at launch, No Man’s Sky brings its space flight action to PSVR2 as well.
No Man’s Sky has undergone some huge changes since its first release, now looking like an entirely different game to its initial offerings and finally starting to fulfil its promise as a ground-breaking game that would take players to the stars like they’ve never been able to before. Now with VR added on that promise is certainly looking like a reality as players will be able to hop in their ship and fly planet to planet with incredible immersion. VR has been crying out for a truly great flight game so hopefully No Man’s Sky, when presented in PSVR2’s wonderful 4k, 120hz, OLED display, will be able to carry the torch.
Horizon Call of the Mountain VR
The world of Horizon is so expansive and beautiful that to be able to experience it in VR might seem like a dreamful impossibility. But not so anymore with PSVR2 as the wonderful world of Horizon comes to life with Horizon Call of the Mountain, a VR exclusive experience.
This new story in the Horizon universe steps away from Aloy and puts you in the boots of Rays. Luckily, like Aloy Ryas is well adept with a bow and slinging bombs, so you’ll be machine hunting just as before now with even greater control. With the PSVR’s incredible fidelity you’ll be scaling up vast mountains and machines in what looks to be an awe-inspiring experience. We can’t wait!
The segment also showed off a new free update coming to Horizon Forbidden West offering new outfit switching, new weapons and trophies, new game+ and an ultra-hard difficulty for the apex machine hunters.
Marvel’s Spiderman PC (Aug 2022)
Everyone’s favourite webslinger makes his way to PC with Marvel’s Spiderman Remaster now available for PC in August.
This joins Sony’s growing trend of bringing their first party titles to the PC after release, with God of War (2018) also due to come. The approach still seems some ways behind Microsoft who typically offer games for both Windows and Xbox platforms and offer simultaneous crossing between the two so that players can enjoy their games on either at any time. Bringing a select few of your most popular titles to PC years after the fact still feels miles behind in comparison.
Stray (July 19)
Out of the remasters and VR releases and into the exciting original content now. First up was Stray, a game which asks the question “what if you were a cat”. Well, as it turns out, if you were indeed a cat you might stalk the neon splashed streets of a cyberpunk world, avoiding robots and making valuable friends with others.
Lost in a cyberpunk city, your furry feline must find its way home while simultaneously completing puzzles and uncovering an ancient secret. The game looks like a mix of adventure platforming and puzzles, with perhaps some stealth and action thrown in.
Stray will release just next month, on July 19, to both PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5. It was also announced that the game will be available on PlayStation’s redesigned PS+ library for free to subscribers.
The Callisto Protocol (Dec 2)
Ever wanted a bit of Dead Space with your Doom? Then The Callisto Protocol looks like it might just be the thing for you.
If the trailer for The Callisto Protocol did give you Dead Space vibes well then you’re not wrong to notice them, because the new sci-fi horror is being developed by its original creators.
Set on Jupiter’s moon Callisto in the year 2320, The Callisto Protocol stars Jacob Lee, an inmate at Black Iron Prison who must fight for his life when a mysterious outbreak throws the moon into chaos. Jacob will battle the prison’s guards and inmates, who are mutating into creatures called Biophage, as he uncovers the mysteries of the moon, its prison, and the United Jupiter Company who runs it.
The Callisto Protocol will also be getting the jump on its twin series, as its December 2nd release date puts it a whole month ahead of EA’s upcoming Dead Space remake. You’ll be able to enjoy some space monster killing action on PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.
Rollerdrome (Aug 16)
Rollerdrome will catch the eye first for its beautiful drawn art style, and then secondly for its awesome looking roller-skating action. If you’ve ever looked at the movie Rollerball and considered that it would make for a hell of a game then Rollerdrome looks like it will give you that and then some.
Flipping over robots, blasting them with two hand cannons and dodging their missile blasts, all while gliding through on a pair of rollerblades; Rollerdrome looks frantic and wonderfully fun.
The makers of OlliOlli World are keeping their next game within the extreme roller extreme sport genre (a genre which I think is both created and perfected by them so far) with Rollerdrome. The cell shaded look of Rollerdrome is also akin to OlliOlli World so we can have some high hopes for this one if it is anywhere near the same high standard.
Get your skates on August 16th for PS5, PS4, and Steam.
Eternights (Early 2023)
Marrying dating sims with action, Eternights promises to let you find love in the apocalypse.
In Eternights, players will make the most of life during the apocalypse, saving the world and finding love along the way. The reveal trailer gave a glimpse at the game’s unique blend of love story and adrenaline-driven combat, brought to life with beautifully crafted 2D animated cut-scenes.
As described by Studio Kai of their debut apocalyptic dating action debut: In Eternights a mysterious entity has infected humans, turning them into dangerous monsters obsessed with violence and power. As they stand between you, a cure, and the world you want, you must race against the clock to fight for your survival and for those you love.
Players will encounter perilous dungeons steeped with mystery and danger, overcoming traps, puzzles and dancing mini-games to beat their deadlines and make it through on time. When not exploring dungeons, choose a confidant from a cast of five quirky and loveable characters. As you grow closer, explore their unique stories, and unlock new skills and spells to aid you in battle.
Considering the seeming current timeline of the world it seems only apt that this apocalyptic dating game will be coming in early 2023, just to get you really ready for what lies ahead for you dating life.
Street Fighter 6 (2023)
Resident Evil wasn’t all Capcom had to show at State of Play. Ryu, Chun-Li and the gang return with Street Fighter 6 next year!
The new brawler will add a new roster of characters to some of the ol’ dependables. The game will also feature a brand-new open world style story mode that has you searching for the battles like a more roided up Pokémon trainer – only, except, you are the Pokémon too in this instance.
Capcom has introduced a new fighting mechanic to the age-old fighter in the form of the Drive System. Described as a gauge that you’ll need to manage wisely and one that is ripe with creativity, you can utilize the Drive Gauge to perform five different techniques that can easily enhance your offense or defence.
For those who are worried that fighting game inputs are too complicated and just want to unleash your inner fighter, Capcom has a solution in the form of a new control type option. First off, Classic Control Type is what veterans can expect to use for inputs with its six-button layout.
New to Street Fighter 6 is also the Modern Control Type, which allows for easier inputs where a special move can be performed by combining the “Special Move” button with one directional input.
The new control systems will hopefully breathe new life into a series that has had its struggles in the modern era, though with any fighter the minutiae of button mechanics can be a tricky plate to balance to please the most ardent veterans and new players alike.
Final Fantasy XVI (Summer 2023)
The final showcase of the event was introduced by Yoshida Naoki, producer of the Final Fantasy series. After a brief message about making games to love in such uncertain and tough times, Yoshida brought us all new gameplay for Final Fantasy XVI.
The gameplay promised high-octane battles against the game’s many Eikon. The combat looked exceptionally good, with frantic battles taking place both big and small between not only you and the Eikons, but sometimes the Eikons clashing amongst themselves with you at the centre of the action.
In his PlayStation blog post Yoshida Naoki shared an excitement for ‘power of the PlayStation 5 behind us’, stating that it would help the team to ‘take you on a seamless, story-driven, white-knuckle ride that will rival even the most thrilling roller-coaster.’ This would suggest that Final Fantasy XVI is perhaps exclusive to the new gen console, however early reports have also suggested that that may only be a timed exclusivity.
Final Fantasy XVI had reportedly been in development for 4 years prior to its initial announcement in September 2020 making this an extremely long process for the Square Enix team. However the game’s director took to PlayStation’s blog to first apologise for the wait and then excitedly confirm as well ‘that the game is fully playable from start to finish; though, from optimization to brush-up, there is still a mountain of challenges to tackle as we head into our final push’.
That final push will have us waiting until summer of 2023 at the earliest it seems.