Biggest Games At Tokyo Game Show 2018: Kingdom Hearts 3, Death Stranding, More
By Tamoor Hussain and Peter Brown and Dave Jewitt on
Show us your games, Tokyo!
Tokyo Game Show 2018 is under way and, like all major video game conventions, the biggest upcoming games are out in full force. While Tokyo Game Show tends to have quite a healthy selection of mobile and indie titles, console blockbusters also receive a great deal of attention.
This year we walked around the show floor, visiting booths and taking note of the biggest games being exhibited so we could give you an overview of the hot up-and-coming experiences that Japanese gamers are eager to play. While we made an effort to take pictures of every booth for the relevant games, in some cases photography was prohibited, so we've used recent screenshots for them as a substitute.
Tokyo Game Show has already delivered some exciting news and trailers. Most notably, Capcom has released a new Devil May Cry 5 trailer and detailed the Deluxe Edition. A Resident Evil 2 Remake trailer focused on Claire also made its debut during the show. In the week leading up to the start of Tokyo Game Show, Sony held the PlayStation LineUp Tour and provided a fresh look at some brutal Sekiro: Shadow's Die Twice gameplay, played host to the announcement of a new Samurai Shodown, and revealed Judge Eyes, a new project from the team behind the Yakuza series.
Coinciding with the start of Tokyo Game Show was also the announcement of the PlayStation Classic, a mini version of the original PlayStation that comes with 20 "generation-defining" games. The PlayStation Classic is set to launch in December.
Without further ado, join us on an abridged look at the massive show floor at Tokyo Game Show 2018.
Ace Combat 7 - PS4, Xbox One, PC
The Ace Combat series has always deliver satisfying aerial dog fights, with players desperately chase after aircrafts at breakneck speeds, weaving in and out of incoming gunfire, and opportunistically launching missiles to swat their target out of the air. However, what really makes this series hit hard with fans is the melodrama and surprisingly human stories that are occasionally told in between the bombastic jet-on-jet showdowns. To ensure fans won't be disappointed, Ace Combat 7 returns to its roots and the "strangereal" universe of earlier entries in the series, which means there's more of an opportunity to get weird and cheesy with the story, which is exactly what everyone wants. For those who can stomach the speed and neck-breaking twists and turns, Ace Combat 7 will also have a PlayStation VR experience when it launches in January 2019.
Catherine Full Body - PS4/Vita
Catherine was a sleeper hit on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, and Atlus is giving it a second chance on both PlayStation 4 and Vita in 2019, despite the handheld ceasing production next year. There are some additions planned, including a new major character. At Tokyo Game Show, the Catherine Full Body booth stood out for its size, but also due it its unusually on-brand entryway.
Days Gone - PS4
Days Gone will be one of the early 2019 PS4 exclusives when it releases next February, and though it didn't have a massive presence at Tokyo Game Show, the motorcycle at Sony's booth proved to be a popular attraction with attendees.
Dead Or Alive 6 - PS4, Xbox One
Dead or Alive 6 is the first mainline entry in the series in six years, and the first for the current console generation, running on a new engine that allows for visible damage on fighters. We got the chance to play a few rounds on the show floor and found the fighting to feel very familiar, but there are two new systems at play for veterans to explore when the game ships next year: Fatal Rush and Break Gauge. Fatal Rush is a mechanic that lets you initiate a series a heavy, slow attacks that deal a lot of damage. The first strike counts the most, but the wind up leaves the initiator vulnerable to incoming attacks. Your Break Gauge, once full, can be used to break free from holds and combos to interrupt your opponent's momentum and regain the upper-hand in a fight. There are 12 characters revealed from the roster thus far, but there is still a lot more to learn about this promising sequel, which is scheduled to release in 2019 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
Death Stranding - PS4
Death Stranding has a presence at Tokyo Game Show, though more in spirit than anything else. Lead creator Hideo Kojima is scheduled to have a live chat on stage with several of the game's voice actors but attendees otherwise have the chance to warm up to a lifelike statue of actor Norman Reedus, decked out in his lookalike space/hazard suit, baby in a bottle and all. There's still no telling how Death Stranding will function as a game, but Kojima's track record is all most people need to be excited for what's to come--whenever and whatever that may be.
Deracine - PSVR
Nowadays From Software is mostly known for the Souls series of games, but if you look back in the studio's history you'll find an eclectic mix of games across a wide range of genres. While the upcoming Sekiro seems to follow in Souls' footsteps, Deracine is a PSVR game that veers in a very different direction. It's pitched as an adventure game set in a boarding school, and while the details therein remain a mystery, it's clear that the game is going for a foreboding and mysterious approach to its storytelling. Deracine is due to come out later this year, and is a PSVR exclusive.
Devil May Cry 5 - PS4, Xbox One, PC
Capcom has made a big deal about Devil May Cry being back in a big way for the fifth entry in the mainline series and, based on what's been shown so far, it seems like a return to the over the top, quintessentially Japanese take on action that fans have come to know and love. While Devil May Cry 4's Nero is technically in the lead protagonist role, the series' flamboyant favourite son Dante will also be returning for another outing. During Tokyo Game Show, Capcom released a trailer for Devil May Cry 5 showing him in action using the Cavaliere motorcycle weapon. The trailer also featured a nice nod to another iconic Capcom hero: Mega Man. Devil May Cry 5 launches for PS4, Xbox One, and PC on March 8, 2019.
Dragon Quest Builders 2 - PS4, Switch
The original Dragon Quest Builders was something of a surprise when it released--most people expected it to be nothing more than a simple cash-in on Minecraft's success. It turned out that surface level comparison belied the game's distinct Dragon-Quest charm and true RPG-like qualities, and Builders ultimately earned a reputation all its own. A sequel is on the way later this year in Japan, with a little help from Koei Tecmo no less, but there's no telling at the moment when it will come to the West.
Dragon Marked For Death - Switch
Inti Creates is a Japanese studio that's all but dedicated to crafting 2D games that recreate the magic of mid- to late-'90s action games. Dragon Marked For Death stands out from the rest of the team's output (Mega Man Zero, Azure Striker Gunvolt) with its multiplayer structure. Players can team up in this side-scrolling RPG locally or online, and pick from four classes to diversify their squad. The grand mission at hand is yet unclear, but based on Inti Creates track record, we're optimistic that the gameplay and art are reason enough to keep an eye out as its December 2018 release date draws near.
Everybody's Golf VR - PSVR
Sony's long-running Golf series is headed to PSVR, and while the game will continue the tradition of offering welcoming and charming golf courses, the shift to VR means that players can now simulate swinging their clubs using either a Move or DualShock 4 controller. Everybody's Golf VR is currently scheduled to release in 2019.
It will come as no surprise to you that Epic's quirky battle royale title is also a pretty big deal in Japan. While perhaps not the cultural phenomenon that it is in the western world, Fortnite maintains a healthy presence, in thanks due to its availability on so many platforms and the fact that it offers players small, achievable tasks on a regular basis. If you haven't been keeping up with it, Fortnite Season 5 is set to official wrap up on September 25, but Season 6 is on the horizon. A mysterious cube has shown in the game world and submerged itself in the water, completely changing the area around it. What this will mean for the game and the new seasons remains to be seen, but we don't have long to wait for those answers as Season 6 is scheduled to begin shortly after Season 5 ends.
Ghost of Tsushima - PS4
One of the most exciting upcoming PlayStation 4, Ghost of Tsushima exclusives is actually set in Japan. Specifically, it's set in Tsushima, an island that was invaded by Mongols in the 13th century. Having faced the ruthless Mongols and watched the population get captured and subjugated, the samurai are forced to evolve and adapt Ninja-like tactics. Developer Sucker Punch strives to balance realism with its own dramatic fictionalization of Japanese history. It does not have a confirmed release date yet.
Judge Eyes - PS4
It should come as no surprise that the developers behind the Yakuza series, in which you play as a gangster embroiled in the politics and scheming of the Japanese mafia but also spend time managing cabaret clubs and do menial tasks for random members of the public, is weird. On its surface, Judge Eyes seems like a more serious project from the developers. You play as a lawyer and investigate murders, but also use drones to find out if husbands are cheating on wives and drop kick hoodlums in the street, for some reason. At this point, the Yakuza team has turned taking baffling scenarios and making them compelling into a fine art, so expectations for Judge Eyes are high. The game is set to launch for PS4 in Japan in 2018. A western release will follow in 2019.
Kingdom Hearts 3 - PS4, Xbox One
After an excruciatingly long wait, the Kingdom Hearts saga is set to come to a close, at least when it comes to Sora's journey anyway. From what we can tell, developer Square Enix is looking to go out with a bang and has managed to get some of the most popular recent Disney properties into the game. For Tokyo Game Show, Square Enix showed off more of San Fransokyo, the city from Big Hero 6. Players will be able to travel to the futuristic city and meet up with Baymax and Hiro to adventure together. Sora's journey will also take him to a Toy Story and Frozen world, among others. The Kingdom Hearts 3 cover art, which is designed by Tetsuya Nomura, also made its debut around TGS. Kingdom Hearts 3 is set to release on January 29, 2019 on Xbox One and PS4.
Mega Man 11 - PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC
It remains to be seen if Capcom will heed the cries of Mega Man fans everywhere and restore the stalled mid-air transition that happens when entering boss battles in classic Mega Man games, but that nitpick aside, Mega Man 11 is nonetheless one to look forward to if you long for classic side-scrolling action. It's been eight years since the last mainline Mega Man game, and in that time we saw the spiritual successor Mighty No. 9 ride the wave of nostalgia before crashing on a beach of disappointment. Hopefully Mega Man 11 will prove that there's still life left in the classic formula when it releases next month.
Ninjala - Switch
Ninjala projects the same candy-coated attitude of Splatoon, but its PvP battles are designed around a very different set of mechanics and rules that distinguish it from Nintendo's light-hearted shooter. Rather than pit players against each other with ranged weapons, every combatant blows bubblegum bubbles to generate melee weapons of relative strength: the bigger the bubble, the stronger (and slower) the weapon. There's an inherent risk to the process as well--you will get trapped by your gum should another player knock you out of commission. It's too early to tell if Ninjala's mix of presentation and game design will rise meet the expectations from its perceived visual mimicry of Splatoon, but based on the extravagant booth at TGS 2018, it's clear that publisher Gung-Ho is betting big on its flagship 2019 Switch release.
Persona Q2: Full Cinema Labyrinth - 3DS
Persona Q2 is an upcoming 3DS dungeon-crawler from Atlus that combines characters from Persona 3, Persona 4, and Persona 5. The Tokyo Game Show booth was a surprisingly accurate recreation of the counter from Persona 5's in-game cafe, offering a familiar and fitting setting to demo the upcoming game. Western Persona fans are anxiously awaiting an announcement of a Western release, but Persona Q2 will release in Japan this coming November.
Resident Evil 2 Remake - PS4, Xbox One, PC
Capcom's overhaul of the beloved Resident Evil 2 is a major star at TGS, both for having a killer booth and for offering a great demo, pitting players against the ghastly mutated form of poor William Birkin. Resident Evil 2 Remake comes out early next year, but we've got plenty of new coverage on the way in early October. Stay tuned!
Tetris Effect - PS4/PSVR
Tetsuya Mizuguchi is a game developer with a penchant for mixing music and digital dreamscapes, as seen in his work on games like Rez and Child of Eden. His relatively young production house, Enhance, Inc., is hard at work on Tetris Effect in an effort to bring these qualities to the tried and true Tetris formula in VR. The PlayStation 4 exclusive is scheduled to come out this coming November.
Warriors Orochi 4 - PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC
Don't be fooled by the photo above; Orochi Musou 3 is technically Warriors Orochi 4 in the West. It had a major presence at TGS 2018 at the Koei Tecmo booth, and with a cast of over 170 playable characters, it wasn't hard for the publisher to fill out its floor space with dozens of unique faces, all ready for battle. The Orochi series takes place in an alternate dimension where Dynasty Warriors and Samurai Warriors characters fight side by side at the behest of the one, the only, Zeus, the Greek god of thunder. Warriors Orochi 4 releases soon in Japan (September 27) and will arrive in other territories this October.