The first four months of the year is fast becoming a big time for Video Game releases, especially if your company is called Sony Interactive Entertainment. Guerilla’s Horizon: Zero Dwan came out in February of 2017 and unexpectedly knocked everyone’s socks off. God of War hit in April this year and is a strong contender for the GOTY. The idea behind these early-year releases is that they want to get out of the way of all the big franchise releases at Christmas – your Call of Dutys, your Assassin’s Creeds, so they can have the spotlight to themselves in the relative scarcity of the first third.
This year, Sony have staked their claim to February again as the time to release their newest original IP, Bend Studio’s Days Gone. This Sons of Anarchy simulator meets post-apocalyptic zombie shooter hits shelves around the world on February 22, 2019. This new cinematic traier (I use the word cinematic because it features precious little gameplay and a ton of cutscenes) sees protagonist Deacon St. John running from every species of undead animal and beating the tar out of alopecia sufferers.
Days Gone is Sony’s latest attempt at being the Prestige Publisher for scripted, single-player content and while reception of Days Gone has been lukewarm for now, I expect that will change as press and public get their hands on the E3 demo. I think this will be the surprise sleeper hit for video games in 2019.