Sony's Japan Conference Was Nuts And It Was Great

Image: Kotaku

Ever watched a press conference for video games and thought it was all a bit dull and dry? Don't worry. Sony Japan has got you covered.

If you didn't catch it last night, Sony Japan held a press conference ahead of the Tokyo Game Show. It was largely an opportunity to advertise the PS4 Pro to the Japanese and Asian market, along with PSVR and a whole suite of titles that we probably won't see in the West for ages.

As a result, the entire affair was put together by Sony Japan. And when Sony Japan does a conference, shit goes off the rails real fast.

Image: Kotaku

That WOW! NEW! sequence was how Sony opened the conference. And that was to the backing music of English and Japanese rap, something you'd never hear at E3 or Gamescom.

You'd certainly never hear rap with sped up classical remixes over the top of Battlefield 1 at E3 or Gamescom.

Keep in mind: this is still within the first four minutes. And those four minutes also happened to include what might be one of the most unintentionally funny descriptions given to a Call of Duty game.

No skill. That's Infinite Warfare, apparently.

The conference then calmed down a bit — you can't go for 90 minutes of hybrid rap straight, as awesome as that would be — with a brief rundown of the PS4 Pro's upgraded hardware.

Things weren't completely manic, of course. But it was fascinating to see what you get when you take the same properties and ideas and just run in the complete opposite direction.

After all, Horizon: Zero Dawn looks good no matter what you do. And then there's a whole bunch of things that make you wish Sony would bring them to Western audiences.

Like virtual golf. With golf buggies that go at 100km/hr.

  And then after being treated to another reminder about how nuts the Earth Defence Force series is, we finally got to experience how PSVR is being marketed in Japan.

It's a little different.

The range of experiences were broader than the inside of a schoolgirl's bedroom, of course. And perhaps the most stark depiction of PSVR was how everyone was pictured sitting down. There was also a shot of a father sitting on the couch with the PSVR, seated next to four children who had PS4 controllers:

Image: Kotaku

It was the clearest representation of how people will physically and practically interact with PSVR in their living rooms. It's the kind of imagery Nintendo used to deploy when promoting the Wii and the Wii U.

That stuff was cheesy, and at times laughable. But for consumers, particularly those that don't engage with the day to day grind of the gaming world, it's a helpful communication tool. It shows that they don't need a large living space to enjoy VR; you don't really need any more space than you would normally require to enjoy the PS4 as-is.

They'll still be giving press and gamers plenty of PSVR hands-on time at TGS this year, of course. And major retailers will undoubtedly have their own test kits and demo sections for PSVR. But the messaging from Sony Japan seems a little clearer.

Then again, maybe it's the sort of thing you can only do in the Japanese market.

And then stuff got weird again.

A theme Kojima helpfully continued. He was actually giving out useful information about Death Stranding, but if you'd switched to the Japanese stream (because the English one crashed right when the Ubisoft logo appeared after the Watch Dogs 2 trailer) you just would have seen, well, this.

Image: Kotaku

"I'd like to offer the next step, the future of gaming," Kojima proclaimed. It was an intriguing image to ponder, particularly considering I'd had a chat with someone in the office earlier that day about small children, Call of Duty and Xbox Live.

Wonder what they'd think about a future of gaming where everyone is holding hands.

And then for good measure, there was some HoloLens-level stuff.

  Things started to peter out from there, but it was already a markedly funnier, more interesting, more engaging conference than anything Sony's European or American divisions had put together. Sure, a lot of it was dumb beyond belief, as the trailer for Dragonball Xenoverse 2 illustrated.

Image: Kotaku

But good God it was fun. That's what you want out of your console, after all. That's the whole point of buying the thing.

Sony Japan knows how to sell that. They're advertising fun.

And just for good measure, they showed off their latest TV commercial. Which had this.

If only all conferences were this nuts.


    If "Giant Enemy Crab" didn't make an appearance then the show fell flat.

    God, I'd forgotten that there was even an Everybody's Golf game in development for PS4.

    WHEN THE F*** IS THIS COMING OUT?!? It's just wrong have a PlayStation console sitting around for this long with a version of Everybody's Golf on it.

      I love this series, but if this one has micro-transactions that lock all the best gear behind a paywall like last one, I think I'm done with it.

        Got to wait until mid next year to find out, apparently :|


    Would love to read this but it's not fitting into my phone browser?

      Might be an issue with a couple of the GIFs and how they were embedded. Give it a refresh and let me know.

        I liked it better when the GIFs were static until you clicked on them

        Still way too wide! (Using Chrome on an iPhone) I guess I'll just look at it on my PC tonight - it'll be like I'm in the 2000's again!

    hah crazy stuff P.S. the new PS4 'thinking' cursor in this update is thoroughly hypnotic

    For anyone who hasn't seen it, I freaking love the Japanese ad for the PS4 games coming out in 2016. It also includes rap and games!

    LOL, I thought that about the AIM no SKILL at first but then realised the 'no' was actually in Japanese and the whole thing meant 'skill at aiming' or something like that.

    Awesome to see Rip Slyme -- I didn't realise they were still around, as I was a fan of their early stuff during my uni days.

    Same goes for Arc-en-Ciel -- wow, there are some quality vintage j-rock bands / performers out there still, like B'z, Gackt, Orange Range and The Brilliant Green. I still pine for my personal favourite Rumania Montevideo though.... *sigh*.

    All in all, a pretty solid show from Sony.

    The PS4 ad is here

    and all the other stuff is on the same channel

    Hey it's Takayuki Yamada grabbing the sword in the final GIF. Good actor.

    When I started watching this yesterday, I was getting ready to cook tea - expecting to just be general background dry stuff. That opening sure grabbed my attention haha. As weird as some of the shit was, it was a great conference.

    On a side note, yeah, the gifs do cause the wide issue. I use an iPhone 6, safari. It adjusts to fit landscape mode, so turning the phone sideways makes it fit properly at least :)

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