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Sony's E3 surprises with God of War, Resident Evil VII VR

Kojima Productions' Death Stranding, Insomniac's Spider-Man, the return of Crash Bandicoot, and Days Gone can't even crack the headline

Sony opened its E3 2016 media briefing with an orchestral performance, a symphonic arrangement that set a high bar the rest of the show arguably lived up to, thanks to a load of newly announced games.

The parade of new games started off with an extended gameplay demo for a new apparently Norse-inspired God of War showing a bearded Kratos shepherding his son through his first hunt, their father-son bonding time (such as it was) temporarily interrupted by a troll and some other woodland monsters.

Next Sony unveiled Days Gone, a very Last of Us-seeming story about a motorcycle riding bounty hunter and mercenary making his way through a world shattered by a viral/zombie apocalypse. The game is being developed by Bend Studio, and would return to close the show with an extended gameplay demo.

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Not everything was new. The company also devoted time to a brief trailer for The Last Guardian (now set for an October 25 debut) and a gameplay demo of Guerrilla Games' Horizon Zero Dawn, which was recently pushed back to a February 28 release date. Quantic Dream's sci-fi game Detroit: Become Human also got an updated look, with a tense movie clip showing an android hostage situation playing out in a variety of ways depending on players' choices.

Naturally, PlayStation VR got some time in the spotlight as Sony builds up to its October 13 launch (although perhaps a little less than might have been expected). Leading off the VR charge was Resident Evil VII: Biohazard, in which the player explores a dilapidated and dimly lit home with all manner of terrifying staples, including creepy bugs, a mysterious video tape, and time lapse footage of decomposing animals. Don't expect it at launch, however; Capcom's latest survival horror game doesn't arrive until January of next year. When it launches, the game will be playable with or without VR.

Shawn Layden said more than 50 games will be available for PSVR this year, and rolled out a lineup of exclusive VR titles including the sci-fi game Farpoint, a Star Wars Battlefront X-Wing VR mission, Batman: Arkham VR, and Final Fantasy XV: VR Experience.

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Getting back to the non-VR games, Sony showed off a few minutes of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare's campaign mode. And just in case some fans of the series were still upset about the far-flung futuristic space setting, Activision followed that up with a trailer reminding everyone that Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare Remastered is also on the way. Speaking of Activision, Shawn Layden also announced that the publisher is remastering a handful of the original Crash Bandicoot games for the PlayStation 4. Additionally, Crash will be appearing in this year's Skylanders game.

Sony followed that up with Hideo Kojima, proudly proclaiming "I'm back" as he introduced a clip from his first project with the newly formed (but not-so-newly named) Kojima Productions. The game is called Death Stranding, and stars The Walking Dead actor Norman Reedus. The enigmatic clip began with Reedus waking up on a beach, handcuffed and naked and tethered to a child by an umbilical cord. The child disappears, the water turns black, Reedus is revealed to have no navel, and things are basically just weird.

Before anyone could offer an explanation for that trailer, the show vaulted straight from that to yet another surprise, and the last one of the night, an Insomniac Games-developed Spider-Man showing a new version of the webbed wonder in action around New York City. It wasn't clear if the game is connected directly to the upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming film.

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Brendan Sinclair avatar
Brendan Sinclair: Brendan joined in 2012. Based in Toronto, Ontario, he was previously senior news editor at GameSpot.
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