Without a PS5 launch to look forward to, Sony State of Play is pretty boring. All last year we waited anxiously for a piece, a crumbs of news on the PS5 at every State of Play. On many occasions we were disappointed, though we would have known better if Sony had kept its biggest announcements for specific events such as Future of Gaming and The Road to PS5. Anyway, like moths after a flame, we kept coming back for more.
But the disappointment was part of the whirlwind surrounding the upcoming PS5 launch. We speculated and we hoped, knew that Sony would have to share more details about its upcoming console at some point – so we agreed in thinking “it could happen this time”.
Fast forward to 2021 and the PS5 is in the wild. As I waited for the Sony State of Play of February 2021, the memories of the previous State of Plays’ confusion faded and I let my mind wander to the endless possibilities of what Sony could show at the event.
“Maybe a new God of War Ragnarok trailer (I really hope it doesn’t slow down)? Maybe we can get a release date for Horizon Forbidden West (it will definitely be November, right?)? Will Kena: Bridge of Spirits will be on PS Plus this March (I need that healthy in my life)? “All this, despite Sony explicitly saying that it would focus on third-party and indie games – we are creatures of wishful thinking.
So when State of Play didn’t give us as many big announcements as we were hoping for, it smelled more like before.
Like I said before, Sony was pretty straightforward with what the latest State of Play would offer: focus on India and third-party titles. We got an update on Crash Bandicoot 4 (which we already knew about), other new trailer for Deathloop, a closer look at gameplay for Solar Ash, Five Nights at Freddy’s: Security Breach and Returnal, plus a release date (finally) for Oddworld: Soulstorm and Kena: Bridge of Spirits – with the latest unfortunately a delay from March to August.
The biggest news of the evening was that Final Fantasy 7 Remake gets a PS5 upgrade called Intergrade, already rumored, and a few mobile games. But even then, all these revelations and announcements felt a little lacking. It made me want more.
Where were the big PlayStation releases we’re waiting for? While the focus on third-party and indie games was expected, I thought Sony would pull something big out of the bag in the end – as it did with the PS5 design that turned out to be honest, maybe the news of Final Fantasy 7 Remake fired us up more than there had never been a leak before.
What we want to see next
Of course, nothing will be as big as the launch of a new console, but rough roadmaps (or even some more trailers and gameplay details) for big hitters like Horizon Forbidden West and God of War would help build a brand new hype train, and it would go a long way to help potential PS5 adopters know if they need a console in the current chaos, or if they can wait.
With Sony now officially confirming next-generation VR for the PS5 (or PSVR 2), this is the perfect time to get fans excited about another Sony innovation – especially since Microsoft has no plans to release VR making for the Xbox Series X.
At the moment, it feels like we know quite a bit about some of Sony’s biggest upcoming releases and hardware plans in the next few months and, as a result, my expectation for them has faded. Out of sight out of heart.
I would like to see Sony gradually increase the expectation for both its upcoming big hits and PSVR 2, as for PS5: a small blog post here, a cryptic tweet there. Always keep these products at the forefront of fans’ minds. Then, by the time the next State of Play arrives, fans will be churning out for confirmed juicy details.
With the PS5 release marred by stock issues, a lack of details on expandable internal storage at launch and a lack of gaming offerings, PS5 owners have the right to ask Sony for something more when it comes to transparency. Sony should do its utmost to encourage PlayStation fans to soene sitting in virtual queues for hours to get a PS5. That next year’s PS5 is something they want to be a part of, even if the process of getting there is painful.
After all, Sony’s latest console is a big investment. But in the midst of a pandemic, I often ask a lot. Who knows, maybe I’m just trying to ride the PS5 hype again …