Sage’s Gaming Corner: Remember, Remember, The Hype Of November

by Sage Ashford

In this current generation, December has transformed from being a dead month in terms of releases to being the second most exciting month of the year. Announcements that might have once been saved for E3 started using this end of the year to be revealed, giving them a chance to enjoy a far less crowded news cycle. There were some changes this year however, as Sony announced they would be abandoning their annual Playstation Experience held at the start of December, the day after The Game Awards. But while they’re staying home, there are still plenty of events remaining to get hyped for, and we’re going to run you through all of them.

The Game Awards: Geoff Keighley’s The Game Awards is the latest incarnation of Spike’s Video Game Awards (or VGX), a series with origins dating back to 2003. After Spike finally discontinued the show in 2013, Keighley gave the program the necessary make-over for it to survive in the internet era. While it no longer airs on television, this year’s Game Awards is planned to be on forty different streaming services worldwide, catering to an ever growing number of people who tune in for the awards…and the announcements.
Yes, a long standing tradition of the Video Game Awards are the announcement of new video games. Some of the biggest games of the last generation were announced there: Mass Effect 3, Batman: Arkham City, and Skyrim, and more. And while the conference hit a lull in 2014, they’ve since picked up in terms of announcements, with games like Soul Calibur VI and A Way Out making their first appearance last December.  This year, Geoff’s promising the biggest line up of game announcements yet.   And though he hinted that some of these announcements would involve reveals related to existing games–meaning map packs and new characters–that doesn’t mean we aren’t likely in for a lot of surprises.
This is the last opportunity for the Avengers Project, if it’s going to still appear before the end of the year, for instance.  Warner Bros’ is rumored to have an impressive slate of titles coming up–with Rocksteady, WB Montreal, and NetherRealms all working on new games–and any one of them could have something present. And, according to Keighley, most major publishers will be there in some form or another.

Kinda Funny Games Showcase: In the aftermath of PSX’s cancellation, one man would decide to take up the cause…of being the follow up to The Game Awards. Greg Miller, co-founder of gaming podcast Kinda Funny and former host of IGN Playstation podcast Beyond, seemingly decided on a whim to create something that could take the place of Playstation Experience. Make no mistake, if anyone in gaming is equipped for the job, it’s Kinda Funny and Greg Miller, the group that does a massive annual celebration for their fans known as Kinda Funny Live.
As grateful as Miller seems to be, this feels more like he’s giving back as much as anything.  These are mostly smaller projects, and KF’s ability to reach a wide range of eyes will doubtlessly be valuable to many of these developers, and hopefully lead to some special projects getting the attention they deserve.

Jump Festa: Jump Festa is an annual event with nearly two decades of history behind it.  It tends to revolve around anime and manga, but gaming is never very far behind.  Square, Capcom, and Bandai-Namco are regular attendees of the event, and you can bet they’ll be here this year as well.  Square will be present with Left Alive and Kingdom Hearts III at minimum, while Capcom will be trying to generate excitement for their upcoming Resident Evil 2 Remake, Devil May Cry 5, and information about the next season of Street Fighter.  As for Bandai-Namco, doubtlessly they’ll have an endless stream of new anime games to talk about, but there’s also a strong chance at the appearance of the Tales of title confirmed back in June.
So that’s it!  Three major events coming over the next 30 days that will leave us all with a new set of reasons to complain about giant backlogs and empty wallets for the next year and a half.  Which one are you most excited for?

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