Sony’s State of Play showcases are bettering due to some key adjustments
PlayStation’s second State of Play showcase got here simply six weeks after Sony launched the format with a presentation that obtained decidedly mixed-to-negative reception. However that fast turnaround between episodes, mixed with what Sony showcased this time round, present that Sony knew it wanted to make some adjustments There’s nonetheless work to be carried out, however this second outing undoubtedly improved upon the primary and proved Sony is listening to fan suggestions, paving the best way for lots of potential in future State of Performs.
Although the primary State of Play highlighted a variety of video games, followers knocked it for numerous causes. Its give attention to PlayStation VR titles, irrespective of how nice a few of them seemed — together with the already launched Falcon Age and the upcoming Marvel’s Iron Man VR — solely spoke to a particular, small pool in among the many 90+ million PS4 customers. (Whereas the vacations had loads of PSVR gross sales, there completely ought to have been one introduced on the finish of that State of Play to make any potential consumers extra more likely to decide one up.)
The primary State of Play largely left it as much as smaller, third-party video games launching within the coming months to take up the marquee mantle of the showcase, with Mortal Kombat 11 getting the ultimate slot. It in any other case lacked a slate of main first-party-developed titles, and despite the fact that Sony spotlighted Concrete Genie, anticipation for it, in fact, pales compared to The Final of Us Half II or Ghost of Tsushima.
Now, it’s value noting Sony skipped E3 this yr, and PSX final yr, as a result of these bigger video games aren’t but able to be proven. However, the primary State of Play wanted to make an enormous splash with one thing excessive profile to make it really feel related, and it didn’t.
This second State of Play, received a lot nearer, even when it has a methods to go to make it obligatory viewing for almost all of PS4 homeowners. Proper off the bat, Sony’s preliminary announcement tempered expectations a bit higher than the primary’s did, noting there’d be no next-gen/PS5 speak, and ensuring we knew it could be quick.
However then, really opening with a have a look at Monster Hunter World’s Iceborne enlargement, coming off the unimaginable gross sales success of Monster Hunter World, offered an thrilling begin. However ending with the massively anticipated re-reveal of Last Fantasy 7 Remake actually made us sit up and concentrate. This was the type of content material we’d come to count on, after years of Nintendo Direct’s conditioned us to off-cycle bulletins or highlights of main video games.
The pacing in between these two additionally helped. Whereas the video games proven off in between Monster Hunter and Last Fantasy have been smaller in profile, displaying them off in fast succession with out lingering on something for too lengthy was the precise strategy. Future State of Performs do must strike a greater steadiness of main, minor, and mid-tier releases, one thing Nintendo Direct’s have fairly persistently nailed within the Nintendo Swap period.
My largest concern proper now with State of Play is the dearth of really PlayStation-specific content material they’re highlighting. It’s not like there’s nothing to point out: there are lingering main titles ready within the wings, smaller first-party video games that would at all times use a bit extra press, and new PSVR bundles.
However this second State of Play undoubtedly confirmed PlayStation cares about making these showcases extra vital and offered one thing large to the viewers who will proceed to tune into them this yr and past. However these showcases are PlayStation State of Play reveals, and there must be extra of that DNA if Sony really needs to create a platform to spotlight what makes taking part in on PlayStation so nice.
Jonathon Dornbush is IGN’s Information editor, PlayStation lead, and Past! host. Speak to him on Twitter @jmdornbush.