After a break for the Christmas holiday, we’re back with our weekly PlayStation roundup. This week will be a little different than usual. As this is the first roundup of 2019, we’re going to have a look at some of the top news for PlayStation and Sony in 2018 and also look to the future to see what 2019 will have in store. We will have some more trailers than usual, both for upcoming games and the best trailers from 2018.
PlayStation 4 2018 Sales
The PlayStation 4 was the dominating video game console on the market last year. An article from gamesindustry.biz states that the PS4 had an increase in hardware sales in 2019, with over one million units sold. Despite the Nintendo Switch putting up a strong fight as its sales increased more than 20%, the PlayStation still came out as the leading console for 2018. It was also recently announced the PS4 has surpassed 90 million units sold in its lifetime, an impressive achievement which further suggests its dominance.
Despite the impressive sales for consoles, physical copies of games are slowly on the decline due to the ease, convenience, and accessibility of digital purchases. However, PlayStation still dominated the market in terms of physical sales. According to the same article, PS4 was responsible for 42.2% of retail game sales in 2018. Although this is a 9.7% drop from 2017, it still makes up a significant amount of physical games sales. Sony and PlayStation have definitely taken the lead in terms of sales figures for video game consoles and for physical copies of games. Hopefully, this success will continue through 2019.
Single Player Success
Another great success for Sony and PlayStation came from some of their 2018 exclusives. Spider-Man is now one of their biggest hits to date, beating the Batman Arkham series to become the fastest selling superhero game in US history and breaking several records while doing so. One of the most notable features of Spider-Man is that it’s a narrative driven single player experience. With the growth of online games such as Fortnite, it has been a concern for gamers that single player games may be on the decline. Other factors such as the collapse of Telltale Games, a studio which popularized the point-and-click story-based adventure games, towards the end of 2018 gave way to the notion of online games becoming the primary concern for game developers in the future. However, Spider-Man and other single player story games such as God of War and Detroit: Become Human shows that there is still a huge market for good games with a strong narrative, and no online play required. The critical and commercial success of all of these titles is crucial for the continuation of narrative-based games, as suggested in an article from PlayStation Lifestyle website which I’ll link here if you would like to know more.
Great Trailers for 2018 PlayStation Games
Marvel’s Spider-Man Be Greater Trailer- Trailer Released September 2018
This was a great trailer that captures the character of Spider-Man perfectly. We see Spidey keep getting knocked down by several villains, the antagonists from the game including Electro, Rhino, and Vulture. He is failing and with each hit, he gets weaker. But ultimately, he gets back up and fights his way back to the top of the skyscraper. It’s a perfect representation, no matter how many times he his hit, no matter how hard he falls, Spider-Man always gets up and never gives up. This is one of the most endearing parts of his personality when he is Spider-Man but also when he is Peter Parker. This trailer shows that the game knows who Spider-Man is and will honour his character, which it well and truly did. It also includes the tagline “Be Greater”, a nice take on the usual “With great power comes great responsibility” phrase. As a huge fan of the game, I definitely found myself striving to be greater and be the best Spider-Man I could be.
God of War- Story Trailer- Trailer released January 2018
God of War was one of the biggest PlayStation successes of 2018 and this story trailer did a brilliant job of highlighting the narrative of the game as well as showing that this was going to be a very different God of War game. We see Kratos and Atreus embark on their journey to scatter Fayes ashes and are introduced to some of the characters that they meet on the way such as Freya and Mimir. What I really enjoyed about this trailer is how it showed that the story and the relationship between father and son were crucial elements of the game. It was no longer just a hack and slash title, it was about to become an action adventure with a wonderful narrative.
Great Trailers for Upcoming PlayStation Games
Resident Evil 2 Remake- Releasing January 25th, 2019
Now this is how you do a remake! Capcom already successfully remade the first Resident Evil game so it wasn’t too surprising when the sequel, which has often gotten more praise than the original, was also due to get the remake treatment. The characters, iconic scenes, and settings all look fantastic with the impressive update to the graphics and camera which is now in a contemporary over the shoulder style. It’s considered one of the greatest survival horror games of all time, so seeing it in a whole new, modern way is both nostalgic and terrifying. Raccoon City has never looked so inviting.
The Last of Us Part II Gameplay Trailer- No Release Date Given Yet.
When a sequel to Naughty Dogs widely successful 2013 title The Last of Us was announced, I was unsure as to how to feel since the end of the original story seemed very fitting. It didn’t feel like more was needed to add to the compelling and near-perfect story. However, the little that we have seen since the announcement of Part II has been enough to get me excited. The player takes on the role of Ellie this time around and not much is known about the story as a whole. In the above trailer, we see that she is several years older. We see her interacting with others her own age but we also get to see some gameplay of her taking down enemies. In an interesting decision from Naughty Dog to show that the enemies in the trailer are not infected, but healthy people. We see how much Ellie has evolved and what she is willing to do to survive but the trailer also leaves us with many questions about the story and where Joel comes into the picture. Naughty Dog have yet to give us a release date for the game but we will continue to wait patiently.
There are so many great titles coming out for the PlayStation 4 in 2019, here’s a list of a few more with concrete release dates for you.
Kingdom Hearts III- January 29th
Metro Exodus- February 15th
Jump Force- February 15th
Dead or Alive 6- February 15th
Far Cry: New Dawn- February 15th
Anthem- February 22nd
Devil May Cry 5-March 8th
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice- March 22nd
Mortal Kombat 11- April 23rd
Days Gone- April 26th
Rage 2: May 14th
Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled: June 21st
Shenmue 3: August 27th
Death Stranding: No release date but it’s a Hideo Kojima game so definitely worth a mention!