Marvel's Spider-man 2

Let’s Discuss – PlayStation Showcase Analysis: Best Showing From PlayStation in a Year

Welcome to the PlayStation LifeStyle feature Let’s Discuss. In Let’s Discuss, we’ll be grabbing members of the PlayStation LifeStyle staff to discuss various relevant topics within the games industry. We want you as part of the discussion too, so feel free to join in with your thoughts in the comments below.

This one comes just after Sony wowed fans with the PlayStation Showcase, giving fans a glimpse into what’s coming in the future of the PS5. It brought a lot of heavy hitters, but there were a lot of things that didn’t end up taking the stage, despite numerous rumors. After some time to mull it over, we dive into what we think about the things we were shown.

Cameron: Overall, I was pretty impressed with what we were shown. Sure, there could have been a few more epic surprises, because KOTOR does nothing for me personally, Wolverine is great, and never played Alan Wake, but it was still an overall solid show. The games we already knew about looked great, like Forspoken, Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands, Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, and God of War Ragnarok, but it would have been nice to have a few more reveals.  Too much time was spent on games like Deathloop (days before release) and GTA V, which was released almost 30 years ago it seems. Also wasn’t all that interested in Rainbow Six Siege stuff, and I love Uncharted but a bump to PS5 reveal wasn’t really that necessary in my eyes. However, I’ve seen a lot of chatter about how people wanted more new IPs and while I agree to some extent, I also have no problem with a ton of sequels so long as they are good.

Chandler: I first have to say that I loved the Showcase overall. But I agree that the big surprises just weren’t there. KOTOR was a big surprise, as was Marvel’s Wolverine, but everything else was relatively expected. I genuinely thought the Spider-Man 2 trailer was inFamous with that first blast of electricity. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very excited for Spider-Man 2, and games like God of War Ragnarok and Forspoken are looking amazing, but this didn’t quite have the same element of surprise and energy that we’ve seen in previous E3 or PSX showcases from Sony. Still, it was a fantastic showing all around, with very few titles that had me tuning out, but no press conference or showcase is going to 100% nail it for everyone. Sony still showed up to play for this one in a big way, and I hope it’s a herald of more big things to come.

Marvel's Wolverine

Cameron: I just wish that they would prioritize a little better. Maybe use the showcase for the new game reveals and first gameplay trailers, then send out a press release after the fact that touches on things like PS4 games getting the upgrade treatment to PS5. I know this might be greedy, but I want to get to the end of a showcase out of breath and frantically starting an emergency savings fund to pay for all the games that just assaulted my face. Things like GTA V and Uncharted 4 getting bumps to the PS5 does very little to do that. Also, while the Wolverine bit really excited me, it also left me wanting more, because I can tell it’s far off and I want to see things that are a bit closer to release.

Chandler: Publishers have a bad habit of announcing games far too early, but on the other hand, the culture of rumors and leaks in the industry almost requires that they get ahead of some jerk on Twitter just outing the game for clout. Unfortunately it also means that excitement around an announcement fizzles when you realize that we probably don’t get to step into the claws of Logan until about 2024. Back to the showcase itself, I also was hoping for some actual services talk. Where was information about the partnership with Discord? No new changes to PS Plus? Get Mark Cerny on there to talk PS5 firmware and what engineers are currently looking at and working on.

I was really thrilled to feel like Sony was actually talking to us again. The company has kept fans at arms’ length for a long time, the polar opposite of Microsoft basically being down in the crowd with their fans, and while this Showcase was a step in the right direction, we have a long way to go to get back to the days when Shawn Layden and Adam Boyes and Shuhei Yoshida were front and center. Jim Ryan and Hermen Hulst both just feel really… distant.

Forspoken release date

Cameron: Great point on the services and things outside of games. It also would have been nice to have ANY update on console quantities around the world. Sure, there probably isn’t a great update, but even just addressing it and saying you are trying your best would have been better than nothing. Something that also caught my eyes and others as well, is that it seems Sony is finally starting to move away from the PS4, as most all of the games were PS5 only. While I don’t hate the move, because you have to move on at some point, it seems strange to do that at a time when the PS5 is increasingly hard to locate for most gamers.

As for the personalities missing from Sony, this has been something lacking for a while now and I don’t really understand it. I know the system is selling great and doesn’t necessarily need a hype machine, but I miss the days of Sony having that face and voice to associate with their consoles. I mean hell, there was a very successful spoof account for the old CEO Kaz Hirai. Excitement from Sony towards their consoles goes a long way and now it just seems like they know we are going to buy the games, so why show us any excitement?

Chandler: But I think we’re starting to veer into the weeds a bit on this one. The question is, how was the PlayStation Showcase? And the answer, all of those criticisms and critiques aside, is that it was great. Wishing there were more games/different games/additional content doesn’t take away from the fact that this was perhaps the best showcase Sony has had since the September PS5 Showcase in 2020, just ahead of the PS5 launch. We can’t judge the showcase on what it didn’t show, only what was there.

And it did a lot to improve on critiques I’ve had over this last year for showcases and communication from Sony in general. It had a bit of something for everyone. Sure, there were a couple misses, but marketing dollars talk, and I’m sure Rockstar’s partnership guaranteeing a slot for GTA V involves a lot of money, so I can handle a couple minutes of that. Overall though, solid showcase that shows why the fans keep coming back to PlayStation time and again, and will for years to come.

What are your thoughts on the PlayStation Showcase? Hop into the comments below and discuss with us and each other, and let us know what future topics you want to see us talk about on Let’s Discuss.