Along with its focus on Vita at this year's Gamescom, Sony also demonstrated a refreshing willingness to take risks on new IP, revealing Puppeteer and Rain (both from Sony's Japan Studio) along with Supermassive's Until Dawn.
Puppeteer casts players as Kutaro, a boy turned into a puppet by a cruel king and trapped in a magical puppet theatre. The game is immediately reminiscent of a Tim Burtonesque LittleBigPlanet with its chunky visuals, 2D platforming and playful incursions of the fourth wall.
Rather than moving through the world, however, in Puppeteer, the world moves around your character, sets switching out behind you as you progress through each level. It's looking like a highly polished, and enjoyable outing. The game has a distinctly western feel, despite coming from Sony Japan - an aspect likely down to Gavin Moore's (listed on the PlayStation blog as art director, but introduced as the game's director on stage at Gamescom) influence.
Rain, meanwhile, is far less boisterous. A thirdperson adventure, its protagonist is an invisible boy who's position in the game world can only be pinpointed by the using the torrential rain which outlines his figure and provides puddles in which his footsteps can be seen. The trailer only shows night time environments as the boy chases after a girl accompanied by what looks like a skeletal dog.
Camera's appear to to fixed with some occasional movement - Ico style - which presumably ups the challenge of keeping track of your character. But unlike Lost In Shadows, another game that stars an invisible character but which keeps you constantly aware of your position, walking under a roof in Rain sees you disappear entirely - an intriguing, if potentially frustrating, design choice.
Finally, Supermassive's Until Dawn aims to transpose the teen horror flick into videogame form and sees a group of teens visiting the site of their friends' disappearance on the anniversary of the event. Of course, they're subsequently picked off one by one. Controlling a number of characters using Move, the survival horror looks to play out in firstperson, though its unclear how much control players will have over their characters' movement through the world.
The game looks to be a series of hands-on puzzles in which your Move actions are mapped on to your character's hand, and has been created in collaboration with Hollywood writers and US TV actors. It wears its influences on its blood-soaked sleeve, too, with the trailer referencing a range of films including Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Saw, Wolf Creek and Cabin In The Woods.
While other publishers are relying on established IPs in the closing stretch of the current generation, it's heartening to see Sony going out on a limb and pushing new ideas and characters to the fore in its firstparty line-up - a line-up which also includes The Last Of Us, Beyond: Two Souls and PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale.
Sony has shown its willingness to play the long game before, of course, investing in new series and broadening the PS2's catalogue over time, resulting in an uncommonly long life for the console. Clearly, the Japanese giant also believes in PS3's potential in its twilight years, and we're unlikely to see the console disappear even as the next generation begins.