PlayStation’s State of Play Shows off Final Fantasy VII Remake, MediEvil, Monster Hunter DLC and More
Final Fantasy VII Remake, MediEvil, Monster Hunter World’s Iceborne DLC and a host of weird and wonderful-looking indies were given the spotlight during PlayStation’s second State of Play.
Airing on Thursday evening (UK time), Sony’s new direct approach (get it?) meant that they could pack a lot into a twelve-minute run time — building to a big re-reveal for Square Enix’s most anticipated title.
Monster Hunter World: Iceborne
Kicking off with Monster Hunter, we got an extended look at the game’s new Iceborne expansion. Capcom will be hoping that the frozen plains and monstrous new threats shown off in this trailer will be enough to coax players back into Monster Hunter’s massive world over eighteen months after the release of Monster Hunter World. Iceborne is set to release on September 9th, 2019.
Next up we had a plethora of smaller games, both from independent studios and Sony’s Worldwide Studios teams.
The first of these was Riverbond. Developed by Toronto-based studio Cococucumber, this isometric dungeon crawler is wonderfully cute with its blocky, voxel-based, art-style. Resembling PS3 cult-classic 3D Dot Game Heroes, Riverbond is available in single-player mode or with up to four friends in couch co-op and looks to be lots of colourful, hack-and-slash fun. The game will be available “this summer” on PlayStation 4 (Cococucumber has also confirmed the game’s release on Xbox One and PC via Steam) and includes skins for characters from Guacamelee, Bastion, Shovel Knight and more.
Predator: Hunting Grounds
Probably the biggest surprise of the event came next with developer Illfonic (working closely with FOX) showing off Predator: Hunting Grounds. Yes — that Predator. A PS4 exclusive asynchronous multiplayer game from the developers of Friday the 13th that pits four tooled-up soldiers against sci-fi’s stealthiest killing machine. Who saw that coming? Predator: Hunting Grounds is due to release in 2020.
Sir Daniel Fortesque’s reanimation followed with a brand new story trailer re-introducing players to MediEvil. The PS1 cult-classic has certainly been prettied up, but with gameplay sticking to its old-school action platforming roots. MediEvil releases on October 25th, 2019 and it’ll be interesting to see how it stacks up against its recently remade peers like Spyro and Crash Bandicoot.
Away: The Survival Series
Undoubtedly the weirdest new title revealed was Away: The Survival Series — a game that seemingly puts you right into playable a Planet Earth-style nature documentary. Developed by Breaking Walls, the game looks great and puts a new (and relevant) twist on the survival game genre. It's early days for this one, so there's no release date as yet.
Final Fantasy VII Remake
The presentation closed with a brand new look at Final Fantasy VII Remake. Last seen at PlayStation’s PSX presentation in 2016 and thought to be in development hell, this new trailer certainly made it appear that the long-awaited remake could be closer to release than we previously thought.
The most popular iteration of Square Enix’s storied RPG franchise looks outstanding and although the new action-based battle system may worry some die-hard fans it’s a sign that the developer wants to push this game beyond the audience who want a traditional turn-based JRPG.
The trailer ends with “More to come in June” so expect to see this at Square Enix’s E3 press conference — or, alternatively, the Final Fantasy concert earlier that week — which falls in PlayStation’s vacant slot on June 10th (or 11th here in the UK) 9pm EST / 6pm PDT / 2am BST.
Final Fantasy VII Remake is undoubtedly the biggest talking point from PlayStation’s second State of Play broadcast and proves that Sony are willing to use them to showcase larger titles and not just new and interesting indies.
Will State of Play replace a traditional E3 press conference next month? We’ll have to watch this space.
You can watch the full State of Play (originally aired on May 9th 2019) here.