The Internet Reacts To PlayStation’s New Not-Guardians Of The Galaxy Hero Shooter

The Internet Reacts To PlayStation’s New Not-Guardians Of The Galaxy Hero Shooter

Concord, the upcoming hero shooter from Firewalk Studios, got a fair bit of spotlight at Sony’s May State of Play presentation. The showcase led with a lengthy cinematic trailer introducing the game’s wacky band of misfits, and the internet immediately clocked it as a Guardians of the Galaxy-esque romp. This was followed with a gameplay trailer that showed off an Overwatch-style competitive shooter, and given that it led the showcase and took up a sizable portion of the show, Sony was likely hoping it would garner fanfare from PlayStation’s community. However, the reaction has likely been less enthusiastic than Firewalk and Sony were expecting.

So what is the problem? For one, the hero shooter genre has been oversaturated for almost a decade thanks to games like Overwatch and Apex Legends, so games like Concord and Marvel Rivals can feel years late to a trend well past its prime if they don’t do enough to distinguish themselves. With Concord failing to communicate a clear hook that makes it memorable in an oversaturated live-service market, some folks are already dismissive of it, seeing it as another game to add to the pile of genre contenders that will likely launch, flop, and possibly put people in game development out of a job. The comment section on Concord’s two trailers is scathing.

“Just call it ‘Modern Audience: The Game’” – @rile_up

“So many people are gonna lose their jobs over this game….” – @patrickwilliams7582

“Is this seriously what Sony thinks people want?” – @mrnatak-ic6lj

“The most shocking thing about the trailer was that Sony left the comments open” – @T.O.Wallee

Once it was established that everyone was going open season on Concord, criticisms were directed at it from every angle. Pushing away with all our might the fact that there is a reactionary group mad the game features a diverse cast, let’s instead focus on the actually worthwhile conversation points sprouting up around the game. The cinematic trailer came under fire for portraying Concord as something with a narrative throughline. Then it became clear it was a competitive shooter with external “vignettes” that would tell the story. After games like Overwatch have pushed narrative to the side in favor of a live-service competitive game that diminishes its setting, fans are wary of a game that could repeat the failures of its clear inspirations. The format has become tiresome, though we’ve seen so little of Concord’s story elements that there’s a possibility it may integrate those ideas more successfully.

Some also took jabs at its character design, which lacks the same recognizable spark of its hero shooter contemporaries. Others criticized what’s widely seen as its derivative nature, stating that it clearly drew inspiration from properties like Guardians of the Galaxy but lacks the charm. If you’re coming in years late to the hero shooter trend and don’t offer anything new, exciting, or even remotely memorable, it’s going to feel like a disingenuous cash-in.


Some of the disdain may be rooted in backlash toward Sony’s recent pivots and business decisions. PlayStation had company-wide layoffs in February and completely shut down Singstar developer London Studio. This came after a concentrated push for more live-service games despite Sony’s efforts in that area having frequent troubles in development, including delays and cancellations.

If Concord and all the parts of it people take issue with are the end result of Sony putting millions of dollars into live-service games over the beloved single-player games and IP that have long been synonymous with PlayStation, it’s the video game equivalent of a hapless cashier getting reamed for company policy determined way above her pay grade. Perhaps that’s why the reveal of Astro Bot went over so well, comparatively. The platformer is a sequel to a beloved game that pays tribute to the best parts of PlayStation history, rather than something that portends to a more generic, mass-appeal future for the brand.

Ultimately, Concord may be better than this State of Play communicates. Marketing is just as capable of undermining a video game as it is generating hype. But unless Sony and Firewalk Studios are able to make a better second impression, this viciousness will likely follow it until it launches on PlayStation 5 and PC on August 23.

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