Sure, PDXCON isn’t typically the place PlayStation fans would go to see a slew of news about games coming to the console. After all, Paradox Interactive largely deals in grand strategy and simulation games, genres that are woefully underrepresented on modern consoles. Being the industry leader in these types of games, however, means that Paradox is also at the forefront of exploring the console space for games that many may not have even though possible to play using a controller. The publisher is responsible for titles like Surviving Mars, Cities: Skylines, and Stellaris, which managed impressive controller-based transitions for each of those games.
PSXCON 2019 took place in Berlin last weekend, and while a good majority of the show focused on announcements for PC players, there were a few good reasons to watch for those of us with a DualShock 4 glued to our hands. Here’s every PlayStation-related announcement that came out of the show.
Surviving the Aftermath
Turning the “Surviving” title into a series after Surviving Mars felt like the right fit when Iceflake Studios pitched its post-apocalyptic builder game to Paradox. It might not be coming from the same developer as Surviving Mars, but Surviving the Aftermath carries on the legacy of the builder game where players had to build out a colony on the inhospitable sands of the red planet. Surviving the Aftermath is set after an unspecified nuclear disaster renders the earth nearly uninhabitable. Manage and build a colony and then explore the inhospitable wastes, fending off bandits, collecting useful resources, and recovering from terrible disasters.
Surviving the Aftermath is out now in early access for Steam and Xbox One. It will be coming to PS4 alongside the official release in late 2020. By that point, Iceflake should have added to and updated the game numerous times to ensure a rich console experience that works well with a controller in hand.
Age of Wonders: Planetfall – Revelations Expansion
It’s not often that the PC and console versions of grand strategy games are completely on parity with one another, but Age of Wonders: Planetfall is one such game, thanks to the impressive work of the development team at Triumph Studios. The upcoming Revelations expansion will add a whole new NPC faction, two additional campaigns to play through, 30 new locations, and secret technology of the Heritor, descendants of the Es’Teq. The Heritor only want to use the technology to reincarnate and awaken billions of dormant Es’Teq across the galaxy. No big deal except that they just want to establish divine rule over all. Join them or the resistance, it’s up to you.
Revelations will be available November 19 for all platforms.
Stellaris Console Edition Getting Updates in 2020
Stellaris was not originally developed for console in parity with the PC version of the game, which means that each version has its own set of updates and additions. While PDXCON 2019 was light on overall announcements for the console edition, focusing instead on the Federations expansion and Lithoids pack for the PC, it was promised that Stellaris Console Edition would be getting unspecified updates and support in 2020.
Brenda and John Romero Talk About Empire of Sin
Originally announced at E3 2019, Brenda and John Romero (yes, the same John Romero of DOOM fame), took to the stage to talk about Empire of Sin, the criminal empire management and strategy game. Taking place during the prohibition era in Chicago, the game features characters and stories based on real-life criminal bosses and events of that period. Of course, some creative liberties were taken to really ratchet up the criminal competition as you build out your own empire, but it was all in the interest of serving the fantasy of living a life of crime as someone like Alphonse Capone.
The Romeros didn’t have anything new to show, but as one of the newest titles coming to the Paradox lineup, they took a little stage time to talk about Empire of Sin.
Prison Architect Console Edition Gets Free Content Update
There was a time when the future of Prison Architect was uncertain. Double Eleven had developed the console version of the game, a feat many thought would be impossible to accomplish for the complex prison builder and management title on PC. In fact, it ended up that many of the console version’s features and expansions began making their way to the PC as it outpaced development. One such expansion (Psych Ward) is now headed to PC after Paradox acquired the PC publishing rights and revived it with Double Eleven at the helm of all versions now.
Though focus was on the coming support for the PC version, Double Eleven wanted to make sure that console players knew that a free content update would be coming later this year on November 21, with additional support coming in 2020. Paradox isn’t publishing the console version directly (those rights still belong to Double Eleven), but the new partnership for the PC version of game meant that Double Eleven was able to make that promise to its fans for a game that’s more than three years old now.
Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood Reveal Trailer
Set within the same “World of Darkness” universe as Vampire: The Masquerade, Werewolf is an action RPG that sets players under the light of a full moon as a werewolf who must manage his predilection for violence. A brief teaser was shown, set to some heavy metal music. It’s not actually a Paradox Interactive published game (that privilege goes to Big Ben, with developer Cyanide Studios at the helm), but as Paradox bought White Wolf, former publishers of the classic pen and paper role-playing games within the World of Darkness universe, the IP still falls under their branding. That makes PDXCON a prime place to show off the game and hype the future of World of Darkness.
The Brand Manager for World of Darkness also teased that next year would be a massive one for World of Darkness, with more releasing in 2020 than in the entire history of the brand.
Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 Delayed to Later in 2020
After what feels like ages in development, Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 is getting delayed to an unspecified date in 2020. The developer wants to avoid the same rocky buggy launch that plagued the first game, and feels that the studio needs a little bit more time to get things right. Of course, this one wasn’t announced on stage. It’s not a big and exciting announcement, but it did fall within the slate of announcements that surrounded PDXCON.
Vampire: The Masquerade – Swansong Narrative RPG by The Council Developer
It’s not all bad news surrounding the Vampire brand. Vampire: The Masquerade – Swansong by The Council developer Big Bad Wolf was announced and given a 2021 release date. Not a lot of additional details were provided for the narrative RPG; we don’t even know what platforms it’s slated for at this point, but given The Council’s console release, it’s a safe bet that this one will be headed to our controller-bearing hands as well.
Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York Coming Next Year for Console
One more from the Vampire sub-franchise. Coteries of New York is coming December 4 for PC players, and next year on console.
There were tons of other announcements and reveals made at PDXCON 2019, including the long-awaited Crusader Kings III, but for now the depth of that grand strategy game remains a PC gem that hasn’t made the jump to controllers yet. You can watch the full announcement show below.
With Paradox Interactive’s propensity for filling the strategy and simulation-sized hole on consoles however, expect further announcements from the publisher to hold increasing relevance for PlayStation players.