PlayStation Showcase — Spider-Man can’t save us from boring PS5 future

Opinion by Kes Eylers-Stephenson,

Sony's new PlayStation Showcase has just given us a good idea of what to expect over the next year for the PS5, but what were our thoughts on the showcase?

PlayStation Showcase 2023's new PS5 games were many, but have they impressed the TrueTrophies lineup of Editor Kes and Staff Writers Sean and Lee? Read on to find out if they think the best PS5 games were on show last night, and why the most boring PlayStation Showcase needed saving by Marvel's Spider-Man 2.

Marvel's Spider-Man 2Marvel's Spider-Man 2


Kes — a smart Sony doth not make an interesting PS5 future

Well, I think Sony played the smart calculated hand during a time when — in a post-Xbox-release-poorly-received-Redfall-and-Activision-Blizzard-deal world — everyone wanted big, emotional, shocking reveals. I wanted that, too. Nothing would have been more pleasing than seeing the next Ghost of Tsushima, The Last of Us multiplayer, or whatever Bend Studio is working on after Days Gone. We didn't get that or more Death Stranding 2 or even Baldur's Gate 3 — all of which would have given me chills. Instead, I felt pretty bored by what we saw last night.

Sony gave us the bare minimum. I'm pumped Bungie is working on getting us a rejuvenated shooter with, hopefully, some Marathon trophies. But then I look at the two live-service shooters from Sony's first-party studios, that being Firewalk's Concord and Haven's Fairgames, and I wonder why they even bothered presenting if they've got no gameplay to show us. No one cares about CG trailers.

But, getting those core-gamer-dividing live-service games out there now is smart, I think. PlayStation needs a live-service shooter and between the aforementioned games and Helldivers 2 (which had a great trailer), Sony will find something that clicks or shows promise. Get them out there now without anything major to dilute their presence, spread the word while all eyes are on you, then rescue the core gamers with your big single-player hits later down the line. As far as strategies go, it's boring and a bit sad, but Sony was probably ready to bite the bullet on this one.

Marvel's Spider-Man 2 kind of rescued my 2023 dreams for the PS5 game lineup with a strong showing, even if it was just more Spider-Man (I'll collect all the Marvel's Spider-Man 2 trophies, regardless). Metal Gear Solid Delta is a massive showcase game, so a huge shout-out there. Assassin's Creed Mirage has my eyeballs thanks to years of Stockholm Syndrome with the series, but my spirit is still skeptical — please, just be good! Otherwise, though, Towers of Aghasba was the only other thing that caught my eye. Maybe next year I'll actually be excited?


Sean — PS5 strong, but lacking a stellar cutting edge

While not everything impressed me during the event, there was still much to take away and be excited about. The absolute highlight of the entire event for me was Dragon's Dogma 2, which received a beautiful gameplay trailer that has me giddy with anticipation. Dragon's Dogma is one of those surprise hits that I stumbled upon back in the PS3 era and have been actively wishing for a sequel to be made ever since, and my wish has finally come true. I can't wait to dive into this epic and action-pack RPG when it eventually releases in the future.

For me, the most disappointing moment from the showcase was simply the lack of Stellar Blade. I'm incredibly excited about this upcoming action epic and wanted more information and (possibly) a release date; alas, this did not happen. Quite honestly, the game gives me serious Bayonetta vibes and I am always seeking more games that can give me that same sass I receive from that fantastic franchise.

While lots of great things happened with Spider-Man 2 — new information and gameplay footage — the lack of a release date other than 'Fall 2023' was a big disappointment. We've known for quite some time that Marvel's Spider-Man 2 will be releasing in 2023, so, an actual release date was something we assumed would just... be there. However, this ended up not being the case. Disappointing, very disappointing.


Lee — Spider-Man saves the day... again

My primary concern for the PlayStation Showcase was that I would see Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 and feel nothing, so the fact that I thought that trailer looked hot as hell is enough to salvage the whole event in my eyes. Which is good, because I was left mainly uninspired by the whole thing.

Assassin’s Creed Mirage looks like an eight-year-old game, and it shocks me how good that sounds right now. Ghostrunner II has quietly climbed up my wishlist. As a big MGS fan, I’m super conflicted about Metal Gear Solid Delta Snake Eater, but seeing as it's been nearly 20 years since the original release I’m not opposed to it. It’s a bad sign when my strongest reaction to a reveal was for Foamstars, which gave me second-hand embarrassment on a cosmic scale for ever having liked video games.

Do you know what this event could have used? Human beings. Real people coming up on stage and pitching why exactly their three-minute CGI trailer is better than the other ones. Sure, they’d lie to our faces, but having some dude who worked on Phantom Blade Zero vouch for that game’s right to be “Sekiro but drabber” would at least give me something to think about. Trailers just aren’t very good at selling games and if Sony can’t realize that, then I hope someday its partners will.

So, what did you think of the showcase? Well, lucky you — we have a PlayStation Showcase for May 2023 poll! But, please do let us know what you think here too! I'm sure all three of the TrueTrophies team — Kes, Lee, and Sean — will be keen to chat!
Kes Eylers-Stephenson
Written by Kes Eylers-Stephenson
Editor Kes is our resident expert in PlayStation and other gaming news. He writes about exclusives like The Last of Us and Horizon, PS Plus news, and his favourite games — The Witcher, Assassin’s Creed, and God of War — before an evening swim.
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