This is the PlayStation 5

After months of speculation, Sony finally pulled back the curtain on it’s a next-generation machine in an hour-long live-streamed event. They revealed a huge number of games, many of them launch titles, and revealed the console at the very end of the show. There’s a ton to get to, so let’s jump right into it!




If you missed the show, check it out here, then come back to discuss it!

The System

We’ll start where the event ended, with the reveal of the PS5 unit itself. You’re not imagining things: there are two different versions of the PS5, one with a disc drive and one without. This will be the first time in history that a version of a mainstream console will not accept physical media. The white, blue, and black motif from the DualSense controllers continue on the console, with sleek sweeping lines throughout. The full lineup of hardware includes a dedicated multimedia remote, 3D ‘Pulse’ headphones, HD Camera, and a DualSense Charging Port.
Throughout the event, Sony reminded us of all the tech that they have built into the controller as well. The adaptive triggers, haptic feedback, and built-in microphone and speaker were all shown in close detail. They also took a moment to remind us of the SSD, 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray and 3D Audio capabilities of the system. It’s clear that Sony has invested heavily in tech this time around, and so far the game designers seem to love it.
Sony led with an announcement that Grand Theft Auto 5 will come to PS5 with an enhanced edition, and PS5 owners will get GTA Online free when it launches on the system. It was also revealed that current owners of GTA 5 players will get $1 million in GTA Online cash-free each month until the PS5 version of the game launches. Not a bad start, but that’s not why you’re here…

Spider-Man: Miles Morales

Spidey is back! Many hoped to see it but not everyone expected the cinematic teaser trailer that led to the true beginning of the show. There was no actual gameplay for this one, but what was shown was the web-slinging, ultra-fast action we loved from the first game, now starring Miles Morales as the webbed one. And the best part, it appears that it will be a launch window title! Stay tuned for a lot more info coming out about this one as it will be one of the most eagerly anticipated early titles.

Gran Turismo 7

The classic Sony racing sim is back and looking better than ever! A cinematic trailer was shown, followed by a short bit of gameplay. There is a hub map where you can see and presumably travel to, different destinations. We saw your home garage, with a lovingly displayed Aston Martin DB11, then we jumped into the cockpit for some actual driving.
Everything in there looks hyper-realistic as one would expect, with a real-time rearview cam and a minimal HUD to get in the way of the real action. I expect the special features of the controller will get a real workout with this one, as a driving sim seems custom-made for the haptic feedback and the 3D sound capabilities. Staring out the window showed not a hint of texture pop-in, one of the things that are supposed to be just a bad memory in this generation. No release date was given but I think you’ll see it in early 2021.

Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart

Here’s one everyone expected, but it was great to see the return of the Lombax and his metal buddy. As the name suggests, this one seems centered around the various dimensions of the Ratchet & Clank world collapsing onto each other, with rifts opening and closing randomly, while dropping enemies and other stuff into each other. Ratchet has a Rift Tether that he can use to pull himself into these rifts, so we can expect to see a huge array of environments ripe for destruction. We got a view of massive enemies, particles flying everywhere, and even a female Lombax!
Speaking of destruction, the weapons are the hallmark of any title in the series, and several were shown off here. There’s a fast-firing pistol, a powerful shotgun-type weapon called The Enforcer, the Shatterbomb which does exactly what it sounds like to your enemies, and the Topiary Sprinkler which freezes your enemies by turning them into plants. The ubiquitous wrench returns as well, because what would a Ratchet game be without the wrench? I’m quite sure there is a plethora of additional weapons that will be revealed as the launch gets closer. No date is given, but I expect this one to come out with the system.

Project Athia

This one was a surprise, and even after the demonstration was finished, we know very little about it. With the Square Enix name attached it demands attention, plus it’s one of several games with a female protagonist. The bit of gameplay showed some very smooth traversal, running, and jumping quickly across mountainous terrain. Our hero appeared to use magical powers to ensnare her enemies, with a dragon shown at the very end of the trailer.
There was a “Designed Exclusively for Playstation 5” stinger at the end, so it will be very interesting to see if this is a true exclusive or just a timed one. That’s really about it, don’t expect this one to be a launch title but we should be getting more details soon.

Stray

Not really sure what to say about this one, as it was the easiest of teaser trailers. It appears this is a dystopian future Japanese city where humans have been eradicated, robots are the populous of the world, and…there’s something going on with the cats. It’s unclear whether you play as the cats, or the robots, or even what the gameplay is. I guess we will all find out together in 2021!

Returnal

Returnal marks the first game from Housemarque, one of Sony’s best indie studios, in quite a long time. The pilot of a spaceship crashes on a planet, is killed by an unknown being and must relive the day until she can figure out what’s going on and escape the loop. This appears to be quite a departure for the Finnish studio that is known for twin-stick shooters like Resogun and Dead Nation, among others.
This is a 3rd person shooter with story elements, and it looks pretty incredible. 4K and 60fps is going to be a real treat with this one, as the visual effects and variety of weapons, a hallmark of any Housemarque game, seem well represented here. Better yet, the planet seems to change with each day relived, so who knows what different environments will be on display. Resogun was a PS4 launch title, so while this one was not dated today, it isn’t hard to believe that this will launch with PS5.

Sackboy: A Big Adventure

One of PlayStation's most beloved characters returns in an adorable, cartoony adventure that looks to fit in perfectly with the fuzzy history of the fabric hero. The video displayed a ton of gameplay that is perfectly reminiscent of Sackboy’s previous adventures in the Little Big Planet games, with lots of platform-y goodness and super cute characters. Sometimes isometric in view, other times in typical 3rd person view, there looks to be a ton of variety on offer here with environments, enemies, and friends alike. It’s unclear if there will be level creation in this title or not, but what we’ve seen looks to be a wonderful new adventure.

Destruction Allstars

This title looks like what I can only describe as a cross between Destruction Derby and WWE. It appears to be destruction-centric, but with teams of racers jumping into and off of cars as they crash into each other. It seems that there may be an on-foot element to the action, which would add a whole new flavor to the car combat genre if you’re having to duck the cars and possibly steal them from other drivers? No date was given for this one, but it looks like it will be a smashing good time whenever we get to play it.

Kena: Bridge of Spirits

From a brand new studio with a small team led by a pair of brothers comes Kena: Bridge of Spirits, and it seriously looks like a Pixar movie. This one showed off quite a bit of gameplay, looking like a 3rd person actioner with large, gorgeous vistas to explore. Kena has a magical bow, a staff, and possibly some magical attacks with which to dispatch her enemies, and apparently a band of adorable little imp-like creatures to help her solve environmental puzzles. The enemies appear to be nature-based, like a corrupted version of the forest, so the end-goal may be for Kena to restore the world to its rightful version. No release date but it looks like a strong entry from the new studio.

Goodbye Volcano High

I’m really not sure what to say about this one, except that it looks like a coming of age Japanese anime cartoon about teenage anthropomorphic dinosaurs in high school. Well, I guess I did know what to say about it. But seriously, this was just a trailer, it doesn’t tell us much of anything, so this will be one to keep an eye out for if it sounds like your cup of tea. It’s coming in 2021 so we don’t have too long to wait for more information.

Oddworld: Soulstorm

Oddworld and Abe are back!! One of PlayStation's most beloved series returns after a long layoff, and this one looks to be even more of the action we’ve come to expect from Lorne Lanning’s games. Huge environments, a ton of particles flying around the screen, and lots of Abe’s Oddworld buddies along for the ride make for an amazing looking adventure. No date was given on this one, but a lot of different levels seemed to be shown, so I’d expect we will see it sooner rather than later.

Ghostwire: Tokyo

I got serious Silent Hill vibes from this one, in a neon supernatural Tokyo setting of course. If you like your action on the horror side, your combat in first-person, and your Japanese schoolgirls without heads, then I think you’re really going to like what Tango Gameworks has cooking here. There’s a whole ton of creepy imagery on offer here, set against the neon lights and disturbingly empty streets of the iconic Japanese city. Combat looks to consist of energy and fire attacks from the protagonist’s hands, and some plunging into the chest of your enemies to remove something? It’s got a 2021 date so it’s not clear how soon we will all be freaked out, but we should know more soon, so stay tuned!

Jett: The Far Shore

This one is a bit mysterious, and it was a bit hard to tell what was gameplay and what was cinematic, but the idea seems pretty awesome. You launch from a seemingly dying planet, into space, where a space-station looking thing takes off for deeper space and the clock shoots forward several hundred years. You are looking for a new home for your species, and the gameplay appears to involve searching many planets to find one that is suitable for them. Looking a bit like No Man’s Sky with some possible flying gameplay and a Japanese anime aesthetic, this one is open to interpretation. It’s touted as a Holiday 2020 launch, so we should see it at or very near the console’s launch.

GodFall

The next thing we got was a gameplay trailer for Gearbox’s GodFall, which showed off the melee-heavy combat and large, varied environments on offer here. This is definitely sword and shield, heavy weapon, smash and up-close business going on, quite different from the Borderlands series that Gearbox has made its name with. If that is your jam, then you can expect to have a very happy holiday, as the game is due to release at or very near the console release this year.

Solar Ash

From the developer of Hyper Light Drifter comes a stylish new game with a very ethereal look to it. The bit of action we got to see was some very smooth traversal, looking like it could include some parkour elements. At the end of the trailer, the game world turns upside down, but it's not clear if that was just for the benefit of the trailer or if the gameplay will really involve some mind-bending physics like that. This one is dated for 2021 so expect to see more in the coming months to tell us what kind of adventure we’re in for.

Hitman III

Agent 47 is back! In what is said to be the finale to the rebooted franchise’s current trilogy, the bald-headed killer is back for his “most intimate and personal” contract ever. We got to see a level in Dubai, which the developer said was gameplay but which looked like more cinematics. That’s probably a good sign, not being able to tell them apart. What we do know for sure is that we are in for more breaking, entering, and assassinating, all in very creative ways. With a release date of January 2021, we’ll get to be back in the gleaming dress shoes of the world’s coldest killer soon.

Astro’s Playroom

From Sony’s Japan Studio, this looks to be a platforming version of the incredibly well-received Playstation VR title Astrobot Rescue Mission. This looks to be an adorable run-and-jumper with a lot of Astrobot’s friends along for the ride. With a ton of environmental effects putting the PS5’s horsepower to the test, this should be as much fun to look at is it will be to play. No release date, but expect it in the first half of 2021 and see if you’re right.

Little Devil Inside

This one looks very intriguing, as half the trailer is anime-inspired ninja combat in a 3D open world, and the other half is an old man going about his day, eating and walking and…pooping. My guess is that the action is all in the old man’s head, perhaps in a Don Quixote type way, or maybe there’s something else going on here. Either way, the enemies are large, the combat looks varied and fun, and I can’t wait to see more of what’s really inside, whenever they choose to show it.

NBA 2K21

Straight up the teaser trailer here, and the biggest thing to see was the detail on Zion Williamson’s face. Clearly, he will be the pitchman for this year’s edition, as the trailer is just him shooting free throws, dribbling, dunking, and sweating. It’s coming in Fall 2020, so this should be a launch game for sure. Expect to see a lot more of this one as we get closer to whatever the NBA season is going to look like, post-COVID.

Bugsnax

This looks to be a pretty adorable platforming game, where the characters are made of food, and you become what you eat. At least part of you does. With talking animals, hot dog hands, cinnamon rolls on heads, and who knows what else, Bugsnax looks like something totally new. This one was light on gameplay and heavy on weird cuteness, so whatever the heck is going on here, we will get to play it this holiday season when the PS5 launches.

Demon’s Souls

One of the big predictions for the show was certainly true, as we were treated to a very brief trailer for the BluePoint Games remaster of Demon’s Souls. It’s everything you remember and loves about the game, only prettier. No release date given, but this one has been talked about for so long that I expect you will be throwing your controller at the wall with this notoriously difficult classic sooner than later.

Deathloop

This one gets my “Game of the Show” award for sure. Developed by Arkane Studios, of Dishonored fame, it’s a stylized, noir adventure that’s very violent and very adult. We got to see a lot of gameplay and learn quite a lot about the story, which centers on two rival assassins caught in a time loop on Black Reef Island. You play as one of the killers, trying to escape the island full of killers looking to cash in the payday, which apparently is your head. Make it through them and you’ve got your rival to deal with.
Each time you die, you come back again, trying to finish the deal once and for all. There’s a ton of shooting, opening rifts to get around the levels, swearing, stabbing, headshots, neck-snapping, blood and all-around mayhem. It’s hard to tell if you get to play with both assassins or not, but no matter what it looks like it will be an absolute delight to play. As the trailer says, “If at first, you don’t succeed, die, die again”.

Resident Evil 8: Village

This is one of the biggies, and it was a great surprise as well. After the trailer, the word Village came on the screen, then it was revealed this was actually Resident Evil 8. It looks like Ethan is back from Resident Evil 7, and I’m guessing the guy at the end who comes in and shoots someone on the floor is Chris Redfield, based on Ethan saying “Chris?!”.
Otherwise, this looks to be classic Resident Evil, incredibly creepy with lots of monsters, all with incredible PS5 shine to the visuals. I’d have to imagine that the 3D audio will be put to terrifyingly great use with this particular title. Capcom was on an excellent roll with Resident Evil 7 and Resident Evil 2 Remake, before stumbling just a bit with Resident Evil 3 Remake. While it remains to be seen which side this new title will fall on, it sure looks to be off to a great start from this trailer.

Pragmata

Another Capcom title in the show, this one looks pretty wild. This astronaut-ish guy walks into an abandoned-looking Times Square, and that’s the most normal part of the trailer. He starts scanning the ground for something, and before you know it, there’s a little girl and a menacing-looking satellite crashing through a dimensional portal. Astronaut guy grabs the little girl and they end up on the moon, looking back at Earth. Yeah, I don’t know what’s going on either. It has definite Kojima vibes but I am certain they would have revealed that fact if he was involved. It’s not coming out until 2022, so don’t hold your breath for details just yet.

Horizon: Forbidden West

The last game of the show was also one of the biggest, as the sequel to Horizon: Zero Dawn has been expected since the smash-hit original took PS4 by storm. Aloy’s voice was immediately recognizable, as was the architecture, the crumbling buildings are just more hidden by the foliage. It seems the world is coming back, with life on land and in the sea. Yes, that’s right, the sea, as it seems water will play a large part in this new adventure. Aloy is shown diving in to explore the depths, with gorgeous flora and fauna inhabiting the ruins of the old world.
Of course, the danger isn’t far behind, as you can see in the picture. Massive new enemies (I’m pretty sure that’s an elephant or woolly mammoth at the end of the trailer), dangerous as ever, will plague Aloy’s trek to the west. Sylens appears in the trailer as well, and though it isn’t immediately apparent if he is friend or foe, my guess would be the latter. I’m really looking forward to this one and seeing what has changed in the world since we last saw it. There’s no release date just yet, but it’s going to be a huge seller when it comes out, which means Sony would love to have it out sooner than later.
So much gaming goodness! I can barely sit still I’m so excited, but I will for a few more minutes to wrap things up.
One note of interest, I think we saw the very first hint of the PS5’s user interface today, as this screen shows. Just before this, we saw the “health and safety warnings” message that is shown on booting up the console every time. The screen had a shower of gold sparkles and then the “press the PS button” screen appeared. Maybe not that exciting compared to the games, but it’s nice to see just a hint of what’s yet to be shown.
To my mind, Sony really hit it out of the park with this event. It was a perfect mix of trailers and gameplay, there was very little talking, and everything that was on offer looked polished and professional. Sony reportedly delayed this event several times because it didn’t look right, owing to COVID-19 remote work most likely, but they finally got a great package put together.
I dare say it was worth the wait, and though we did not get a price or release date for the console, I believe that will come along soon. We already know the target date for release, and I expect Sony will play chicken with Microsoft on the price, waiting for the new Xbox price to be announced before they blink.

Although Sony said today’s PS5 event would be about games, it finally lets the world get a look at the actual console. Until now, all that Sony had confirmed about its next-generation hardware were the console’s specifications and the DualSense controller.
The PS5 is eyecatching, to say the least. As many expected in the wake of the controller, Sony used a mix of white and black for a two-tone design, foregoing the mostly monochrome looks of previous generations. The white wraps around the main body, with the PlayStation logo in the top left corner. Sony’s own photographs show that yes, it can lay down horizontally too.
And that’s not all. Sony also revealed a number of accessories, including a matching Pulse 3D wireless headset, an HD camera, a media remote, and a stand for your DualSense. What’s more, there’s a PS5 Digital Edition that ditches the optical disc drive and will probably be a bit less expensive.

PS5 side
Sony

Sony waited until six months after Microsoft revealed the Xbox Series X to unveil the PS5. But the console’s reportedly going into production this month, so Sony surely wanted to get out ahead of possible leaks. There’s no word on pricing or firm release date beyond the long-established holiday 2020 window, but at least you finally, at long last, know what the darn thing will look like when it’s under your TV.