Sony’s PlayStation 5 event was scheduled for June 4, but has been postponed to June 11th at 4 pm eastern. They plan to show off multiple PS5 titles in development with an emphasis on games running in real-time on the hardware. How many games are planned, along with the distribution between first- and third-parties, remains to be seen. The event is a games-only showcase, with the hardware reveal and pricing set for a later date. Given this, it’s time to speculate what Sony might have up its sleeve.
Possible First-Party PlayStation 5 Games
Console launches are exciting because they’re a chance to ditch aging hardware, propelling new tech to the forefront. Epic Games has already shown a glimpse of this with its Unreal Engine 5 tech demo, indicating the visual quality consumers should expect on ninth-gen systems.
The Unreal Engine 4 PS4 tech demo was impressive in early 2013 before the console’s launch. By 2015, however, Quantum Break and Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End set new standards for real-time console rendering. By 2016 onward, nearly every major release this gen had far exceeded that Unreal Engine 4 tech demo. PlayStation 5 games will surpass the Unreal 5 demo’s rendering quality, with Sony exclusives as the most reliable place to look.
Guerrilla Games is a sure bet. The Amsterdam-based studio has a history of showcasing games prior to a Sony console’s launch. Horizon: Zero Dawn released three years ago, meaning they’ve had enough time in the kitchen to cook something up for the public. Don’t expect anything from most other first-parties, though, as the event doesn’t line up with their releases. Sucker Punch, Naughty Dog, Insomniac Games and even Sony Santa Monica’s titles are too recent for proper showcases.
Polyphony Digital, on the other hand, has been outspoken since Gran Turismo Sport’s pre-release marketing about creating high quality assets for next-gen iterations. Considering this along with the Gran Turismo 7 logo mock-up reveal and trademark, it’s safe to say Polyphony has enough work put into PlayStation 5 to show something. Even if it doesn’t turn out to be Gran Turismo 7, a souped up GT Sport port would be enough to hold fans over.
The Cross-Gen Games
Within the cross-gen space, there are tons of already announced games we could see more of during Sony’s event. Ubisoft would want to save Rainbow Six: Quarantine and Assassin’s Creed Valhalla’s true gameplay reveals for their own event, though, they may not be as protective with other titles. Watch Dogs: Legion received a gameplay blow-out last year. With its delay and rumors of it as a PS5 and Series X launch title, Sony can generate hype by revealing its first next-gen footage.
The same method can generate hype for Rainbow Six Siege, whose next-gen release has also been confirmed. It’s not the most exciting announcement, but fans will appreciate continuing their grind with a fresh coat of paint. Yakuza: Like A Dragon’s western release was revealed for Steam, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X following Microsoft’s event weeks ago. The announcement of its PS5 version may have been held back to keep Yakuza discussion circulating online as trolls argue over Sony and Microsoft’s positions for next-gen.
Quantum Error is a horror-infused first-person shooter coming to PS4 and PS5. Its developer, TeamKill Media, has shown snippets on Twitter, but it’s yet to receive a full gameplay reveal. Sony’s event is the perfect platform for such a lesser-known game. As the first officially announced PlayStation 5 title, Godfall may make a splash upon the event’s introduction.
Dying Light 2’s indefinite delay announced January this year roused concern. Coupled with months of radio silence, Techland’s zombie parkour sequel seemed to be facing the same fate as Dead Island 2, however, they’ve refuted claims of development woes. An Escapist Magazine interview with Techland PR Manager Ola Sondej and Lead Game Designer Tymon Smektala iterated Dying Light 2 is in its final stretch of development. The news’ timing might align with an impending media blowout.
So far, the discussion has revolved around games with a high chance of being shown or in development. Maintaining reigned-in expectations is integral to preventing crushed hopes, but it’s fun to fantasize. Lofty dreams keep the hype cycle churning.
Recent rumors point to a possible PlayStation 5 exclusive Silent Hill entry. The initial rumor mill didn’t generate much credence. Dead by Daylight’s Silent Hill DLC, though, has reignited the conversation. Considering Konami’s mishandling of the franchise, now seems an odd time to reintroduce it. Skipping a generation has worked in its favor, though, as the system’s capabilities including hardware accelerated ray-tracing and Unreal Engine 5’s real-time global illumination make it the perfect generation for crafting spooky atmosphere. If Silent Hill doesn’t come to fruition, there’s a better chance of Resident Evil 8 making an appearance at Sony’s event, as evidenced by a listing on an Austrian site which has since been removed.
A God of War sequel is years away, but it’s one of Sony’s most anticipated announcements. The 2018 reboot is arguably the franchise’s best entry, with reinvented combat featuring a higher skill ceiling and the series’ best writing. Sony Santa Monica’s technical prowess rivals Naughty Dog and Guerrilla Games, opening many possibilities for a PS5 God of War entry. So long as the team crafts an equally engrossing narrative with deeper mechanics and next-gen visuals, the PlayStation 5 is in excellent shape.
Rumor mills are worth entertaining because no matter how outlandish they are, they spark conversation which may influence investors and publishers to take notes. Few big budget projects are willed into existence with no preconceived market audience. The remakes of Final Fantasy 7, and Resident Evil 2 and 3 may have never occurred were it not for years of fan fervor. Jak and Daxter is one of Sony’s most beloved old-school IP’s. Whereas Ratchet and Clank got a PS4 reboot and Sly Cooper’s fourth installment arrived on PS3, audiences haven’t seen a Jak and Daxter game outside the PlayStation 2 era. The last entry, Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier, left a sour taste in fans’ mouths. One rumor claims a remake of the Jak and Daxter trilogy is slated for PS5’s launch. A new game is too much to ask for due to Naughty Dog’s current climate, however, faithful remakes of the games people love can’t hurt anybody.
Speaking of wild speculation regarding cartoony platformers, a November 2019 PlayStation ad had users speculating over the plausibility of a new Crash Bandicoot title. At around the 11 second mark, Neo Cortex is seen sporting a seemingly new mask. Combined with the mobile endless runner and N. Sane trilogy ports to Xbox One, PC, and Switch, it might be a sign of Activision gearing up for something significant.
PS5 Games are Almost Here
Time will tell which of these games get announced during Sony’s hour-long stream. Regardless of how the event turns out, the upcoming ninth generation is the most exciting leap since the transition from the original PlayStation to PlayStation 2. Even if casual consumers don’t recognize the benefits, the hardware presents massive gains for development times and costs with a bigger push toward real-time solutions for previously baked elements. Coupled with the SSD’s, ninth-gen consoles won’t be an iterative step. They’re an exciting reinvention of development moving forward.