Sony are on a roll, but what could they possibly announce next? We have some suggestions…
Since the release of the PS4, Sony have certainly listened to their fans and the various PlayStation press conferences are quickly becoming synonymous with granting the wishes of gamers the world over. Since 2014, they have been making dreams come true by paving the way for unlikely (based on historic industry standards) but highly requested games such as a Ratchet & Clank reboot, Day of The Tentacle & Grim Fandango remastered, a Final Fantasy VII remake, an actual The Last Guardian release date, Shenmue 3, Gravity Rush 2, Nier: Automata, a Full Throttle remaster, Shadow of the Beast and now, remasters of 3 Crash Bandicoot games by Vicarious Visions and a Norse follow-up to the God of War trilogy. Sony have had their finger on the pulse of what gamers actually desire to play and are providing it to them in whatever capacity they can, putting their foot in the door on our behalf. Sure, these have not always been in the form that most would hope – A Shenmue 3 Kickstarter and a Crash Skylanders figure for example – but as a proof of demand which could likely lead to bigger and better things, they are the perfect opening and offer Sony the mic-drop moment they need at their conferences.
One by one, Sony have been crossing games off their “Our customers want this” list – so what’s left to wish for? What games will we be dreaming to see at Tokyo Games Show or the PlayStation Experience event later this year? Or even E3 2017? Well, we have a few suggestions…
The Return of WipEout
The closure of Psygnosis AKA Studio Liverpool in 2012 was a tough one to swallow, especially for those of us who had grown up with the studio during the 90’s. The Psygnosis logo was a sign post for quality and during 1995/96, the studio were responsible for ~40% of all video game sales in Europe. After their acquisition by Sony in 1995, the team released some of the most iconic early PlayStation games such as Lemmings, G-Police, Overboard! and, of course, WipEout.
For 3 console generations and 4 hand held instalments along the way, the WipEout series pushed the boundaries of graphical capability, visual art style, high octane racing and near-flawless soundtracks with a level of quality that never wavered. Of course, there is that elephant in the room that the PS4 is the *only* Playstation device to ever release and, as of yet, not have a WipEout title released on it. The PSX, PS2, PSP, PSVita and PS3 all received a WipEout game during their life span – the “dramatically different” WipEout game that was in development for the PS4 was cancelled when the studio was shuttered in 2012 and there has been no rumours of the project resurfacing any time soon under a different developer.
The demand for an anti-grav racer is still there of course. There is normally a small but dedicated contingent of fans that become very vocal about a new WipEout game during PlayStation press conferences season who, as of yet, are still left disappointed – but there may be hope yet. VR indie game Radial-G is set to release on the PS4 and PlayStation VR and is being hailed as the “Spiritual successor” to Psygnosis’ fast paced racer. Perhaps this might spur Sony into developing their own WipEout VR game… We can hope.
A Syphon Filter Reboot
Have you ever been a fan of a TV show that ended a season on a cliff-hanger but wasn’t picked up for renewal? So that cliff-hanger is the last impression of that TV show you will ever have? That’s exactly where Sony and Bend Studios left the Syphon Filter series. *Spoilers for a 9 year old game ahead* After saving the world from another terrorist threat, the lead character Logan lay on the floor, dying, shot 4 times in the chest as his team mate Lian fights to save his life. Fade to black. Syphon Filter fans have been clamouring for a sequel and an answer to the cliff-hanger ever since but the series was offering diminishing returns and Sony Bend are now working on Biker-Zombie survival game Days Gone.
Let’s get real here for a second – The last Syphon Filter game, Logan’s Shadow, released on the PS2 and PSP just under a decade ago. I think it’s safe to say that we will never get a sequel to it and that cliff-hanger will always just hang in the air like a damp fart that just won’t quit. What Sony might be more inclined to do it to reboot the series for the 10th anniversary of its last entry. In a space when stealthy action games are few and far between, it’s another attractive feather in a cap already full of colourful plumage.
A Jak & Daxter Reboot
Before Uncharted and The Last of Us propelled them into the developer hall of fame, Naughty Dog were famous for 2 franchises – Crash Bandicoot (which we’ve already mentioned is getting a remaster spit shine for PS4) and Jak & Daxter. The rebellious pair were system sellers for the PlayStation 2, bosting 7 Guinness World records, but their only appearance on the PS3 were via a Remastered collection and as fighters in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale. With the critical and chart topping success of the recent Ratchet & Clank reboot, Sony may be tempted to resurrect other colourful, child friendly franchises from their past and at the top of this list should be Jak & Daxter. Handed to the right develop (which isn’t Naughty Dog these days) it could be something quite special.
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