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Julius

PlayStation Showcase 2021 (Thursday 9th September 2021 @ 21:00 BST)

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You’ve been awfully patient, and we thank you for that. And now we’re looking forward to showing you what we’ve been working on.

Tune in next Thursday, September 9 at 1:00pm Pacific Time / 9:00pm BST / 10:00pm CEST for a look into the future of PS5. The Showcase will weigh in at around 40 minutes and include updates from PlayStation Studios and some of the industry’s most imaginative developers, for games releasing this holiday and beyond. And stick around after the presentation to get more updates from some of the studio teams featured in the Showcase.

One thing to note: PlayStation’s next generation of VR won’t make an appearance this time. But there will still be plenty of great PS5 games from developers large and small. We hope you can join us!

Expectations for this are probably through the roof, as it's been a while since we've had something...but my expectations are pretty low.

For third parties, wouldn't be surprised if we saw Call of Duty here, or more on the next-gen version of GTA V...dare I suggest we even see FIFA thrown here? (audibly groans)

Based on the last time we heard about FFXVI, it seemed unlikely it would have something ready to show by TGS at the end of the month, so that showing up seems doubtful, even if we were told an update was coming in 2021. They have Endwalker on the way in November, wouldn't surprise me at all if they wait until something like The Game Awards at this point. Maybe we'll see something from Forspoken instead. 

In terms of first party stuff, feels like a ton of updates on already announced games is on the way. I wouldn't be surprised by a bit more of a tease for Ragnarök. Would love to see what Asobi is working on, but it may be too soon. We've been waiting what feels like forever for an update on the standalone The Last of Us: Factions, another look at Horizon wouldn't be much of a surprise (as good as it looked last time, following scripted scenarios in a small area of an open world game didn't really give a great feel for what the moment-to-moment gameplay will be like), and they'll probably want to show Kena off here as it releases later this month (and probably some of the other indies we saw last time, though I know they aren't strictly speaking PlayStation Studios titles). Maybe a Gran Turismo update? I also think we'll get a final trailer for the Director's Cut of Death Stranding, that seems a safe bet. Oh, and maybe or a tease for Sony Bend's next project? And maybe an update for quick saving/auto-saving for Returnal? 

As for the "one more thing", feel like that could be either Ragnarök, Factions, or - if it's going to be something we haven't had announced previously - either a quick tease of Spider-Man 2 or Bluepoint's next project, maybe even have it tied to an acquisition announcement seeing as that seemed to slip out a few months ago during the Housemarque acquisition if it is something from them. 

So yeah, my expectations are pretty grounded. How's everyone else feeling about this showcase? Funny how something as simple as dropping the State of Play name seems to make this feel much more important, like how other companies treat their E3 showcases. 

Edited by Julius
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Is the new firmware update likely to come out of beta around then?

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This is probably what their E3 show would otherwise have been, so I'd expect the big guns to come out here.

At the absolute least, I would expect a release date for GOW Ragnarok and GT7.

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12 hours ago, Dcubed said:

This is probably what their E3 show would otherwise have been, so I'd expect the big guns to come out here.

Yeah, I think you’ll be right with that.

I know they’ll have heard the lukewarm reception to their last State of Play.  I expect them to respond and use this to really hype the games for late-Nov / early Dec (plus early next year) to encourage Christmas console sales.

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On 9/3/2021 at 8:45 AM, Ike said:

Is the new firmware update likely to come out of beta around then?

I hope so my SSD is gathering dust.  

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Halfway through and this is so unbelievably poor. Hopefully pick up in the latter half?

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“Let’s look at brand new games”

Proceeds to show KOTOR, Alan Wake and GTA5...

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We get it, it's not a Nintendo Direct so you won't like it 😋

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PS Studios saved the day a bit! God of War 2 looks amazing, though still no date? Wasn’t it supposed to be coming out around now originally?

Wolverine a big surprise, looking forward to that. In 2024?

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Halfway through and this is so unbelievably poor. Hopefully pick up in the latter half?

Were you watching something else?
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3 hours ago, Sheikah said:


Were you watching something else?

?? The reaction I'm seeing all over online is similar, the pacing was off and the last ten minutes "saved" a poor opening half hour. Started strong with KOTOR though, then lots of filler, GTA5, an Alan Wake port, a second Uncharted collection, Deathloop trailer #58, Guardians of the Galaxy trailer #12, then the PS Studios stuff was great. Just a shame two of the three big hitters are years away.

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Right, might as well chime in and give my thoughts...

 ...it started weirdly with their advertisement to be honest. IRL chess is such a weird advertising strategy, but I guess that PlayStation doesn't really need to run ads at this point anyway, so yeah. Then we got Jim Ryan's spiel about showing new content and having significant updates...and what do you know, he was telling the truth! :D

Show started strong with the announcement of the KOTOR Remake. It being a timed exclusive for PlayStation probably gives us some insight into what the deal is going to be for MachineGames' Indiana Jones game, which is to say that I imagine that'll be timed exclusive to Xbox, but we'll have to wait and see. I've got question marks over Aspyr being the team behind it seeing as everything we've heard beforehand overshadows their usual budgets to an insane degree, but will hold out until they have something to show. Which, as they said in the post-show, will be a while; we probably won't see anything more until whenever EA's deal is up in 2023, unless it covers the entire year, in which case it'll probably be 2024. Think it's fantastic that we have confidence of multiple projects confirmed as in the works now for post-EA, and I doubt we'll be waiting around too long once that deal expires. 

KOTOR is an odd game for me, I've talked before on here about how I haven't played the game (too young when it released; didn't own an Xbox for the longest time; didn't have a PC that could feasibly run it growing up; and it wasn't exactly something that was on my radar anyways with limited internet access). What really put KOTOR on my radar were the awesome CG trailer for The Old Republic, and I ended up wading through page after page on Wookieepedia learning all I could about that era, Revan, and beyond. The Galactic Timeline Records for TOR were also a massive help and beautifully done, so it's one of those games where I haven't played it...but I know exactly how it plays out, I've listened to the soundtrack umpteenth times, and Revan is one of my favourite Star Wars characters, so we'll see how it pans out, but it's safe to say I'm soundly hyped. Think we've heard in the rumours/leaks that it won't be 1:1, which probably means it'll be more action-based than the original and I imagine potentially have things slightly tweaked to bring it into the Disney canon. 

Bit of a shame (as always) that it was ruined by leaks, because otherwise I think it was a solid teaser trailer. That shot of Revan is gorgeous and screaming to be a wallpaper. 

Anyways, next up was Project Eve, which looks like a Square Enix game but apparently isn't. Seriously, was waiting for some NieR reveal the whole time, because it looks like NieR but somehow...weirder, like NieR X Devil May Cry (with the monster designs and such). Looks fun, from a Korean studio, seems like there's slowly a lot more coming from Korea to the West which is always great to see. It was followed by Tiny Tina's Wonderland...and I think that's the least I've cringed at one of the trailers for this game, so kudos to Gearbox for that; it definitely told me a lot more about it than the trailers we saw previously. It's not a game I was interested in before, and I'm still not, but it's the best showing I think it's had. But what the heck was up with that song that sounded like it belonged in an anime opening? 

Forspoken followed this, and I've got to say, the more I see of this game...the less interested I am. I don't feel like we've seen anything truly new or exciting about this from a gameplay perspective since it's first trailer, where I think we actually saw more meaningful gameplay aspects than we did here (combat, unique and varied enemy designs, etc.); when I think of this game at the moment, all that comes to mind is Frey jumping across rocks or leaping from building to building with an admittedly cool dash in a virtually empty space. It looks like a tech demo. And no I'm not just salty that we saw this and got a release date for it before XVI, I swear. 

Rainbow Six Extraction was a snore fest for me. I'm sure it'll find its audience, but I won't be one of them, I think a really poor E3 gameplay demo has given me more than I needed to see of this game as it is.  

Alan Wake Remastered looks cool, feel like it would have been a more exciting announcement if it hadn't already been officially announced, but I feel like Remedy's hands got forced after it leaked, because I otherwise struggle to understand why you wouldn't save it for a show like this. Also when it opened and we saw that it was a game that Epic was publishing my mind immediately went to Fumito Ueda's and genDESIGN's game...but no dice. Maybe at TGA's? 

Next-gen GTA V looks solid, one of those games I play with my friends every week as it's an easy game to just mess around in and have stupid fun. Surprised that it's not coming until March 2022, and I really am not looking forward to finding out that this will be a full priced game. Just kind of hoping it can be played with others playing the PS4 version as some in my group don't plan to pick up a PS5 for a while. 

Lightning round. Ghostwire: Tokyo still looks good, nice to have a release window at long last. Not a great trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy. Struggle to care about Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodhunt when their other game in the works seems to be tripping over itself and into development trouble constantly to the point of being delayed indefinitely, and a vague "2021" window here for this doesn't exactly invoke confidence we'll see it this year as it's already September -- the developers know that, right?

They say pictures are worth a thousand words, meaning a GIF is probably worth a million...so here's my life's work epic saga of novels on how I felt seeing Deathloop again: 

jumping-out-of-window.gif

Kid A Mnesia Exhibition: no idea what it's going to turn out like, but it's something to do with Radiohead and their anniversary reissue album, so I'm listening. Heh. :p

Then we saw Tchia, which I thought looked cosy as all heck, kind of reminded me of Wild and the guitar plucking a bit of TLOU2...but I just can't find it in me to appreciate the art style. Those noses in that art style have me not wanting to check this game out. Seriously. Also probably the weirdest edits around this in the entire thing? Bizarrely had a transition animation following Kid A Mnesia and then had one ending it and going into the PlayStation Studios stuff. Weird.

Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection looks good, wish we would have had more details on what exactly it entails and whether or not it's worth checking out if you already own the games (I have Lost Legacy sitting on my shelf). Thought it was really odd this wasn't in the PlayStation Studios section? And while A Thief's End and Lost Legacy are good to see coming to PC...what about the rest of the Uncharted games? 

Anyways, then it was onto Hermen Hulst sharing that we were about to dive into the PlayStation Studios stuff...and just as well, because I think this was around the time everyone was scrambling to see how much time was left. Honestly, I liked the format of doing it this way and saving PlayStation Studios titles until the end, and hope it's something they consider continuing in the future in instances where there isn't a true third party bombshell to show off (not that KOTOR Remake isn't massive, it's just been a known quantity for a while. Thanks Schreier). In cases where there is (for example, a Persona 6 or a Final Fantasy VII Remake Part 2) then it might be worth shuffling stuff around to potentially end the show on those titles.

Only thing I wish they did differently here is if Jim Ryan told us the plan at the start, so rather than a vague "we have updates and we have new stuff" it probably should have been "and stick around until the end, where we'll be giving you a look at what is on the way from PlayStation Studios". Just nitpicking here, but that's what you need to do to get people to stick around until the end, because although I thought the rest of the show was pretty well paced and had some good reveals or updates, I don't think that would have been the case for everyone. 

With that out of the way though, onto the (other) PlayStation Studios games. 

Insomniac's Wolverine is a thing. Holy cow, I don't think anyone saw that coming; how many of us were there and saw Insomniac followed by the Marvel logo, and assumed it was Spider-Man 2, before you see this completely wrecked bar and start thinking it looks like something a little too violent went down in here for it to have been Spidey? Great way to play on expectations, and not the only time Insomniac managed that in this show, which is incredible.

But let's not put the cart before the horse, because next up they showed off Gran Turismo 7...and I thought it was a really good showing! The throwbacks to the older games, the church organs (guuuuuuuys the organs!), crazy levels of customisation, a better look at a more traditional campaign screen, and a really good looking photo mode. Seriously hope this gets a demo before it releases, because the only thing in the way of me not wanting this game so badly right now is not knowing how the game feels, especially with the DualSense. Got to say though, another stupidly weird cut at the end where it kind of just...stops the music. 

Then it was over to...Insomniac again?! And this is where I think the importance of how you present a game at one of these showcases comes in: showmanship and knowing your audience.

Okay, they've already duped us on Wolverine not being Spider-Man 2, which they had us thinking it was for a moment thanks to the Marvel logo immediately following the Insomniac logo...but there's no logo at all here. Okay, so this is probably something completely new. We see some electricity buzzing around a traffic lights pole, we hear a gravelly voice...and even I, someone who hasn't played any of those games, is questioning if this is inFAMOUS. 

And then...*chest logos are revealed*...wait, it is Spider-Man 2?!

Insomniac are out here working for a living, good lord. I was just saying to a friend yesterday how at best Spider-Man 2 is probably a tease and is years off (to be fair that's what happened) as Insomniac have only just come off Rift Apart, but here we get this tease and they have a WHOLE OTHER GAME in the works too with Wolverine. Crazy bunch. 

It's genius how they managed their audience's expectations throughout this trailer, and it's stuff like that - a clear willingness to misdirect - which makes PlayStation showcases so worth watching. You might think I'm a little nuts saying all this, or going a bit far with it, but if you want evidence of this being a conscious choice: go and watch the trailer uploaded individually to their channel, and note how the Marvel logo is there right after the Insomniac one. They also did a great job of keeping you guessing when it came to the villain with how they handled his voice (maybe the first voice was Kraven?). Shame it's not coming until 2023, but you can be sure that'll be next-gen exclusive and worth the wait. 

And then, finally, it was onto God of War: Ragnarök...which is actually keeping that as a title, which is nice to finally know, as they've been so coy about it until now. Seeing (and hearing) an older Atreus was cool, game looks great, that town looks cosy as all heck, but I guess the cat is out of the bag on some of the cooler reveals in the first game (Atreus' identity and Thor turning up). And finally seeing Tyr in the flesh after the first game did so much to hype him up was great!

There's not much else for me to add - it does look like God of War, but that's very hard to complain about - other than some stuff we see here which will tie in with Norse mythology in a way that is probably worth sticking in a spoiler tag...

Spoiler

...being that Tyr has his two arms here, which makes me wonder if he will lose it to Fenrir in this game, or how exactly that will work (what with Fenrir being Loki's child but Atreus/Loki clearly not being old enough to have a child at this point, but he does have his powers which appear as a wolf, so maybe Atreus could lash out with a power like that and that's how Tyr loses his hand). 

Also - I mean I think it's pretty blatantly obvious considering that I believe she's the only other child we've run into in this new God of War - that girl is 1000% going to be Atreus' love interest, Angrboða, a jötunn who I guess in this version will likely be the last of the giants. 

Anyways, no release date, but the girl at the end gave a wink and a nod, so I doubt it'll be too long before we find out. If I remember correctly we didn't get a release date for God of War until late January 2018, and it released in April 2018, so @Ronnie that's probably why they're keeping it close to their chest for now, to give us a short lead time from when find out the actual release date to the release (and to be fair, it's always a good idea in these tumultuous times to announce that stuff as late as you can anyways). The window for it's release before the delay was only ever "2021", and seeing as we've now got the whole of 2022 to work with, especially with a pretty busy first half of the year now, this could be a September/October 2022 title to take firm aim at GOTY season. 

That's pretty much if for my thoughts...other than the super weird 10 second countdown we got with the promise of "more updates" following the countdown, only to then be shown a montage before getting to the Q&A stuff at the end. Again, a few really bizarre decisions like that dotted around the show. 

But that being said...this show delivered and then some. Yes it had some pacing issues and poor editing/creative decisions, and yes some will probably see everything from the KOTOR Remake reveal up until Hermen Hulst showing off more PlayStation Studios games for the last 10 minutes as being pretty moot...but let's not let that take away from the fact that those were 10 minutes of awesome reveals and updates. The fact that I can tell you now that I am, for a fact, going to be buying Wolverine, Spider-Man 2, and God of War: Ragnarök on their day of release - three of the four games - AT A MINIMUM speaks volumes to the strength of Sony's current slate of IP's and the quality of their studios. 

It was missing a crazy announcement to be up there with the best game showcases of all time, and yes it hurts that XVI wasn't there (again) and as @Cookyman pointed out The Last of Us Factions is still MIA, but for me those last 10 minutes are going to be 10 minutes I watch over and over again. Would watch again despite some of my issues with it. 

My Totally Unofficial Score: 9.0/10

Spoiler

February's Nintendo Direct: 7.0/10

E3

Summer Game Fest - 6.5/10

Ubisoft Foward: 6.0/10

Devolver Maxpass+: 7.0/10

Gearbox: 3.0/10

Xbox & Bethesda Showcase: 8.0/10

Square Enix Presents: 4.0/10

Capcom: 4.5/10

Nintendo: 9.0/10

Post-E3

July's State of Play: 4.0/10

EDIT: also I completely forgot to mention, where the heck was Kena? Isn't that out in a week and a half? Now that being a no-show is a tad bit concerning. 

Edited by Julius
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On 09/09/2021 at 9:19 PM, Ronnie said:

Halfway through and this is so unbelievably poor. Hopefully pick up in the latter half?

I watched most of it a little later and while I definitely couldn't describe it as 'unbelievably poor', it almost feels frustrating that I don't feel desire for any of it :blank:

It isn't easy being me!

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15 hours ago, nekunando said:

I watched most of it a little later and while I definitely couldn't describe it as 'unbelievably poor', it almost feels frustrating that I don't feel desire for any of it :blank:

It isn't easy being me!

Wind Waker for me!

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Toon Link does have evil in his heart, you're right. 

avatars-000767629630-fpfqtl-t500x500.jpg

 

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5 hours ago, Ashley said:

Toon Link does have evil in his heart, you're right. 

avatars-000767629630-fpfqtl-t500x500.jpg

 

I mean, he does straight up

 

Spoiler

stab Ganondorf in the head.

 

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Finally got round to watching the show… not bad overall.  I still don’t like how Sony are selling their consoles based on CG teasers for games that aren’t coming out for another 2-3 years (looking at YOU Spider-Man 2 and Wolverine!), but it was a well paced show with some nice surprises; even though it’s still very remake/remaster heavy.  GT7 looks like the classic GT that people have wanted ever since 2012; while GOW Ragnarok looks like… well, more of the same, which is what everyone wants.  Alan Wake Remastered looks good too.

Forspoken looks like absolute crap though.  An Isekai version of FF15 with a barren & empty open world? No thanks.

Edited by Dcubed

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10 minutes ago, Dcubed said:

Finally got round to watching the show… not bad overall.  I still don’t like how Sony are selling their consoles based on CG teasers for games that aren’t coming out for another 2-3 years (looking at YOU Spider-Man 2 and Wolverine!), but it was a well paced show with some nice surprises; even though it’s still very remake/remaster heavy.  GT7 looks like the classic GT that people have wanted ever since 2012; while GOW Ragnarok looks like… well, more of the same, which is what everyone wants.  Alan Wake Remastered looks good too.

Forspoken looks like absolute crap though.  An Isekai version of FF15 with a barren & empty open world? No thanks.

Technically Spider-Man 2 could be out in 15 months 😋

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38 minutes ago, Dcubed said:

I still don’t like how Sony are selling their consoles based on CG teasers for games that aren’t coming out for another 2-3 years (looking at YOU Spider-Man 2 and Wolverine!)

I'll be delighted if KOTOR remake comes out in three years but it feels like they've just started working on it. "It'll be some time before we have more to show you" :(

At least GOW2 is coming out next year.... right?

28 minutes ago, Ashley said:

Technically Spider-Man 2 could be out in 15 months 😋

You're forgetting the now traditional Twitter letter announcing a delay (or two)

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43 minutes ago, Dcubed said:

I still don’t like how Sony are selling their consoles based on CG teasers for games that aren’t coming out for another 2-3 years (looking at YOU Spider-Man 2 and Wolverine!)

Yeah, it's a weird one. We're still seeing the impacts of COVID, yet here are two more games coming from a studio that has put out two quality titles in the last 10 months. Was anyone doubting that a Spider-Man 2 was coming? As for Wolverine, was this really the time to make that play? 

Arguably not. I wouldn't disagree, because while I'm excited for those games, they are a ways off. It's not exactly a move to push consoles, considering that they couldn't sell faster after getting back in stock. 

But speaking to my friends who don't yet own a PS5 the other day, it's clear that it's a play for mainly one thing, at least from a front-facing perspective: this is a move to buy mindshare. I mean, just the announcement of Wolverine gets the kind racing -- do PlayStation have a Marvel Games Universe in the works? What else could we see from them, either at Insomniac or some of their other studios? We spoke about it for over an hour, and while they're holding out from buying one for now, they're quickly running out of reasons not to be excited about the slate that PlayStation are building, be it first or third party, whether that be timed or indefinite. 

Unfortunately, I think the biggest reason from a behind-closed-doors perspective is that PlayStation in recent months have been missing out on making their own headlines and, more importantly to them, controlling the messaging. I've said before how I don't like how many leaks we've been seeing, especially after COVID became a massive factor in the delays we've seen, and I mean, Schreier alone has been getting out ahead of PlayStation, first with The Last of Us remake and then with the delay of Horizon Forbidden West. Personally, as someone who owns a PlayStation and watches these events, I would much rather see a CG teaser that says the game is 2+ years away so that the team working on the game gets the attention they deserve than have some journalist completely pull the rug from under their feet. 

Case in point, at least for me: the KOTOR Remake. As soon as we saw the Lucasfilm Games logo it was so obviously KOTOR, and it was all but confirmed a split second later with Aspyr's logo being thrown up on the screen. While I'm still excited, it felt like old news because it was something we'd all read about some 6+ months ago, and it was more disappointing because it was only a CG teaser, for a game that is 2+ years away. My expectations for what we saw were shot because we already knew what was coming. 

And if that's the case, I hope PlayStation sticks with this. I'd much rather have this news come from them with a CG teaser trailer to at least get me excited than reading about it somewhere else, especially when it amounts to individuals stealing other people's thunder. Especially more so when those same reporters cover the difficulties of working in the industry. 

attention-notice-me.gif

32 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

I'll be delighted if KOTOR remake comes out in three years but it feels like they've just started working on it. "It'll be some time before we have more to show you" :(

I honestly wouldn't be surprised if we don't see any real marketing (gameplay showcases, etc.) outside of these announcements for Star Wars titles until the 12 months following the conclusion of the EA deal. They want us to know it's on the way and give us confidence that there's a conveyor belt of stuff coming after the deal ends. 

I don't think it's crazy to think this will be out in 2024, of course assuming that there aren't any delays, which is a big assumption to make when it comes to games. They'll still have a lot of work to do, I'm sure, with new mechanics and modern gameplay, but I think the core narrative experience will hit the same broad strokes and so that, at least, is something we hopefully don't need to worry too much about during development, what with it being a remake and this surely not being a Final Fantasy VII Remake situation.

What makes me most nervous is that Aspyr haven't had a project of this size before, but I hope that they can latch onto the opportunity and have things go as smoothly as one could expect for a AAA title. 

I'm much more concerned about Massive Entertainment's game. We've seen Ubisoft bottle the development schedules of so many high concept titles over the years by running too far with the possibilities and concepts (Avatar, Beyond Good and Evil 2, etc.), but hopefully that's where Lucasfilm Games are stepping in and making sure that they don't deviate. 

Fingers crossed! 

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Yeah there's a certain marketing psychology to announcing things in advance, particularly this close to Christmas. People will see decent deals and think "sod it, I was going to get one at some point anyway so I may as well get it now!"

Maybe Spider-Man 2 will usher in the PS5lim. 

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Nintendo is guilty of this shit too, case in point Metroid Prime 4 (cancelled and restarted for Switch 2 by Retro Studios) and Bayonetta 3 (probably cancelled for Switch, awaiting Switch 2; especially if today’s tweet is anything to go by…).  Meanwhile, Everwild on Xbox is literally just a CG trailer without even a gameplay concept behind it!

I don’t like it when Nintendo do it, I don’t like it when Microsoft do it, and I don’t like it when Sony do it.  Sony are probably the worst when it comes to this little stunt though; they’re notorious for this and nobody ever seems to learn, no matter how many times they pull the wool over their eyes.

It’s dishonest, it’s selling a console on mere hopes and dreams.  The hilarious thing about Wolverine and Spider-Man 2 is that we’ll almost certainly have a PS5 Pro out by the time these games come out; meaning that it’s actually a really stupid idea to buy the PS5 for these games right now :laughing:

It’s bullshit dishonest marketing.  And it should be called out for what it is, no matter who pulls this stunt.

Edited by Dcubed
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How is it dishonest if they say it's not coming out for years?

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