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Coming into Gamescom this year, Sony had a ton of momentum. Their conference at E3 2013 was a smash hit for gamers and critics alike. Within days of the conference, the PS4 was already selling out in some stores, with over one million systems pre-ordered so far. So, could Sony continue that run with today’s conference at Gamescom? You bet. But first, we start with the current systems.
First up was the PlayStation 3. Sony made sure to emphasize key games in the upcoming line-up for the console, starting with Gran Turismo 6, releasing globally on December 6, 2013. They also announced an upcoming Gran Turismo movie. Also emphasized was Grand Theft Auto V, complete with a PS3 bundle available to North American and European regions.
LittleBigPlanet Hub was announced during the conference. The free-to-play game will launch on the PS3 later this year and feature level creation and sharing of customized Sackboy outfits. The game will also have some paid content.
Next was the Vita. First and foremost is the Mega Packs that will be coming to the European markets. These are games that are grouped in packs of 6 to 10 games at a price of €35. These Mega Packs can either be bought separately with an 8GB memory card or bundled with the Vita.
A number of third-party games were confirmed to be coming to the system, including Batman: Arkham Origins, LEGO Marvel, Football Manager Classic 2014, and Borderlands 2. They also announced a number of independent games that will be released for the system, including Starbound, Fez, and Velocity 2X. The indie games will also come to the PS4.
New first-party games were announced for the Vita. The first of the new games was Murasaki Baby, a side-scrolling game from Ovosonico that utilizes touch controls. The second of these games wasBigFest, a free-to-play music game that features the player create and manage your ultimate music festival using real world music groups.
One of the best-received pieces of news came from the reveal of a price drop for the Vita. Starting tomorrow, the price of the PlayStation Vita will be cut to $199 in North America and €199 in Europe. Memory cards will also receive a significant price cut.
Finished with the Vita announcements, Sony turned their attention to the PlayStation 4. Lead System Architect Mark Cerny talked for some time about the philosophy behind the development of the system, trying to create a powerful system “by game creators for game creators”.
Indies led the way for game announcements. These included Rogue Legacy, The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth (free for PlayStation Plus members), N++, Volume, Guns of Icarus: Online, Wasteland Kings, and Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number. While all of these games will be coming to PS4, most will also be coming to PS Vita.
Here’s a look at the bizarre N++. Also, check out the full list of indie games that are coming to PS4 and Vita.
Michael Denny of Worldwide Studios came on to talk about collaborative titles coming to the PS4. Coming from UK studio The Chinese Room is a game called Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture. From Tequila Works in Spain comes a colorful game called RIME. Also revealed was a cross-platform game from Arrowhead Game Studios in Sweden called HellDivers. Shoot-’em-up Resogun from Finnish studio Housemarque was announced for launch of the PS4. Other games talked about during this time were Shadow of the Beast and The Playroom (which will come installed for free on the PS4 at launch). New footage was also shown for Infamous: Second Son and Killzone: Shadow Fall.
After Worldwide Studios was done, Sony took some time to show off applications and services that will be coming to PS4, all available without having to pay for a separate subscription. Twitch will be supported on PS4. Music Unlimited will allow players to listen to music as they play their games. A number of Europe-exclusive offers were talked about, including broadband partnerships with Deutsche Telekom and Virgin Media (among others) and a 14-day trial offer for those who don’t have PS Plus.
After talking about applications and services, we move back to games. Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag was up first with live gameplay. However, instead of just showing off gameplay, the Ubisoft developers showed how you can play the game via Wi-Fi with Remote Play on the PS Vita, switching from the PS4 mid-demonstration. Sony announced afterwards that “nearly all” PS4 games will support Remote Play via Wi-Fi.
Next from Ubisoft was Watch Dogs. They revealed certain elements of the story. Here’s what we know: Aiden Pierce is a vigilante who, with help, has hacked into the Central Operating System. Why he’s done so is still vague, but it has led to him being chased by a number of agencies, including the police and a group called DedSec. In addition to the game, Ubisoft chairman and CEO Yves Guillemont announced that a Watch Dogs movie will be coming soon.
After Ubisoft came the reveal of two more games coming to the PS4. Minecraft, which has been on computers and the Xbox 360, will be coming at launch. Minecraft creator Notch revealed after the conference that the game will also be coming to the PS3 and PS Vita (https://twitter NULL.com/notch/status/369892812185436160). Also releasing at launch will be War Thunder from Gaijin Games.
To close out the conference, Sony Computer Entertainment Group CEO Andrew House came on stage with a few final announcements. First, a 12GB PS3 will be available for €199 in Europe and $199 in North America. In addition, those who buy the PS3 version of select games can get a discounted price on the PS4′s digital version for a limited time.
Finally, after taking one final jab at Microsoft for their flip-flopping on policies, House revealed that the PS4 will launch in 32 countries on November 15th in North America and November 29th in Europe.
And with that, Sony’s conference is over. What do you think about the new content that was revealed? Will you buy a Vita now that the price has been cut? Any thoughts on the PS4 release date? Leave your comments about the conference below.
Here’s the full stream from Sony’s Gamescom Conference.