Sony Will Skip E3 for Second Year in a Row

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Sony Interactive Entertainment has confirmed that one of the biggest companies in gaming won’t be attending the biggest trade show in gaming, E3 2020.

“After thorough evaluation SIE has decided not to participate in E3 2020,” said a Sony Interactive Entertainment spokesperson to GamesIndustry.biz. “We have great respect for the ESA as an organization, but we do not feel the vision of E3 2020 is the right venue for what we are focused on this year. We have a fantastic line up of titles coming to PlayStation 4, and with the upcoming launch of PlayStation 5, we are truly looking forward to a year of celebration with our fans.”

In recent years, Sony has been using their own Nintendo Direct-like streamed broadcast called State of Play. These broadcasts allow Sony to dominate the surrounding news cycle with a digital event all to themselves. It’s worked well for Nintendo for several years, though Sony’s have been more lackluster.

A spokesperson from the Entertainment Software Association, which runs E3, responded to the news with the following: “E3 is a signature event celebrating the video game industry and showcasing the people, brands, and innovations redefining entertainment loved by billions of people around the world. E3 2020 will be an exciting, high-energy show featuring new experiences, partners, exhibitor spaces, activations, and programming that will entertain new and veteran attendees alike. Exhibitor interest in our new activations is gaining the attention of brands that view E3 as a key opportunity to connect with video game fans worldwide.”

Sony’s PlayStation 5 will launch this holiday season. E3 2020 takes place June 9-11 in Los Angeles, CA.

playstation 5

Sony Reveals PlayStation 5 Logo, PlayStation 4 Over 100 Million Sold

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CES 2020 is a bit too early for either Sony or Microsoft to be showing anything substantial of their upcoming console releases. But that didn’t stop Sony President Jim Ryan from appearing on stage to announce the official logo of the PlayStation 5.

Shockingly it uses the same 3D PS symbol with the new PS5 abbreviation. Might as well stick with what works.

Ryan repeated the same PlayStation 5 features that Sony had previously revealed last year, including 3D audio sound, haptic feedback controllers, ray tracing and a solid state drive.

The keynote presentation also revealed sales numbers for the PlayStation 4, as well as active users and PS Plus subscribers. Since its release in 2013, the PS4 has sold 106 million units, making it one of the best-selling consoles of all time, ahead of the original PlayStation and Nintendo Wii, and behind the Game Boy/Game Boy Color.

Sony still holds the record for the number one best-selling console with the PlayStation 2 at around 155 million units sold.

Bolstering that impressive PS4 sales number are over 1.15 billion PS4 games sold, and 5 million PSVR units. The PlayStation network currently sees 103 million active users, over a third (38.8 million) of who are PlayStation Plus subscribers.

“I am very pleased to see that so many PlayStation fans value the unparalleled entertainment experience on PS4,” said Ryan. “This has been made possible by the support we have from our partners and fans since launching PlayStation in 1994, and I would like to truly thank everyone. We’ve consistently delivered innovative products like PlayStation VR, which has reached its 5 million unit sales milestone. There is much more entertainment experience to look forward to that the PlayStation ecosystem will provide that we can’t wait to share with our fans.”

The PlayStation 5 will launch this Holiday season.

The Ten Best Family Games of 2019

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It’s the calm before the storm as we head into 2020, with with a pair of next-gen consoles looming on the horizon from Sony and Microsoft. This year was more than an afterthought for games, however, and Nintendo continues to release smash hits for the Switch.

Gaming families had plenty of excellent choices this year, though you’ll definitely want to own a Switch if you don’t already have one – nearly half the games on our list are exclusive to Nintendo’s excellent handheld hybrid. Here is the (alphabetical) list of our favorite family games of 2019.

Doraemon: Story of Seasons

You may not have heard of classic 1970s anime and manga series Doraemon, but chances are the words Harvest Moon or Stardew Valley will excite you. Doraemon: Story of Seasons infuses the enjoyable farming gameplay of Harvest Moon (now called Story of Seasons) with the youthful characters of Doraemon, including the titular time-traveling cat and his helpful gadgets.

Platforms: PC (Steam), Switch

Dragon Quest Builders 2

Dragon Quest Builders mashed up two great tastes that taste great together – the colorful enemies of venerable RPG series Dragon Quest, with the building, crafting, and blocky world of Minecraft. The result was an instant hit. Dragon Quest Builders 2 adds online (and local network) co-op multiplayer, and is available on Nintendo Switch.

Platforms: PC (Steam), PlayStation 4, Switch

Kingdom Hearts 3

Kingdom Hearts fans had to wait an eternity for the return of Sora, Donald, and Goofy with this beloved mash-up series of Disney and Final Fantasy. While the gameplay in Kingdom Hearts 3 is still firmly rooted in its original early 2000s PS2 era, there’s an undeniable joy playing within the Disney and Pixar worlds like Frozen, Toy Story, and Pirates of the Caribbean.

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Luigi’s Mansion 3

Nintendo knocked it out of the park with this excellent follow-up to the Luigi’s Mansion series, turning the haunted mansion into an entire ghost-filled hotel. Luigi is armed with more ghost-busting abilities, such as cloning himself as Gooigi, which can also serve as a family-friendly local co-op mode. On top of a fun campaign, up to eight players can play competitively or cooperatively in various multiplayer modes.

Platforms: Switch

Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order

It’s been ten years since we last enjoyed a Marvel Ultimate Alliance co-op brawler, and The Black Order more than satisfies our need to punch, blast, fry, and zap henchmen and villains. We love mixing and matching our team of different Marvel heroes from a roster of over 30, including Avengers, X-Men, and Guardians of the Galaxy.

Platforms: Switch

Planet Zoo

As a full park sim Planet Zoo is geared more toward teens and adults, but thanks to the excellent animal AI, robust creation tools, and focus on animal conservation, it makes an excellent game for families to work together to learn about animals and their complex habitat needs. A lengthy campaign help introduces the park tools and management systems while offering a wonderful variety of biomes and locations, then you can try your hand at building your own zoo from the ground up in sandbox or franchise modes.

Platforms: PC (Steam)

Pokémon Sword and Shield

There’s little doubt that a Pokémon game will grace our list of best family games. Even with the somewhat mixed results of Pokémon Sword and Shield, there’s no denying that it provides hours and hours of catching hundreds of Pokémon and battling through the UK-inspired Galar region. The free-roaming Wild Area alone is worth the price of admission for Pokémon’s eighth generation.

Platforms: Switch

Super Mario Maker 2

Super Mario Maker was a phenomenal game when it released on Wii U in 2015, finally giving us the power to create our own 2D Mario levels. The Switch sequel is basically more of the same, plus tons of new features like new enemies, components, day/night and biome themes, and  the Super Mario 3D World tileset. All that along with a much improved single-player campaign and online and local multiplayer makes Super Mario Maker 2 a must-have for Mario fans.

Platforms: Switch

Untitled Goose Game

The official tagline nails this quirky indie game’s description: It’s a lovely morning in the village, and you are a horrible goose. Play as a goose in Untitled Goose Game with a checklist of hilariously mischievous tasks such as stealing from a store, knocking over vases, hiding in boxes, and causing light-hearted mayhem for these poor townsfolk.

Platforms: PC (Epic Games Store), PlayStation 4, Switch, Xbox One

Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair

Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair is a much improved spin-off of the 3D platformer series that combines 3D overworld travel with 2.5D level designs, starring the chameleon Yooka and his bat companion Laylee. The result is a satisfying spiritual successor to classic 2D platformers like Donkey Kong Country.

Platforms: PC (Steam), PlayStation 4, Switch, Xbox One