While we're fully expecting Sony to have some next-gen stunners lined up for its official reveal (including, we reckon, Killzone 4), let's take a moment to look back over history, and remind ourselves of the titles revealed during Sony's earlier hardware announcements.
KILLZONE - PS3
The trailer that sent jaws crashing to the ground and Microsoft quivering in its Xboots, Killzone's intense trailer is likely the most famous in PlayStation's history. Following a squad of soldiers as they drop behind Helghan's lines, Killzone's CGI-level visuals, superb animation and particle effects left onlookers giddy with excitement. Who can forget the first time they saw the cloud swirling as the transport ship whizzed by, or the squad leader barking orders at the player? I always thought he looked like a Dutch footballer. Of course, there was a reason why it all looked quite so pretty: Killzone's trailer turned out to be a target render rather than proper in-game footage. But nonetheless, this was the trailer that left the greatest impression at Sony's initial reveal.
The next best thing to playing PlayStation 3 in the bath, Sony's rubber duck tech demo was used to showcase the console's advanced water physics and processing power. It all looks a bit rubbish now, but at the time, these rubber ducks were the coolest things in gaming.
METAL GEAR ACID - PSP
In 2004, with Metal Gear Solid 3 months away from release, Kojima's stealth series was at the height of its popularity. So when Sony announced a new entry in the series alongside its handheld, fans were understandably excited. The final product was relatively underwhelming, combining the series' traditional stealth play with bizarre card-based mechanics, but the initial reveal was enough to help gain a substantial following for Sony's first foray into handheld gaming.
FIGHT NIGHT ROUND 3 - PS3
Prior to the reveal of PlayStation 3, the detail on Fight Night Round 3's photo-realistic character models was unprecedented. Though the game debuted on Xbox 360 before making its way onto PlayStation 3, EA Sports took to Sony's conference to showcase its terrific animation models and ripple effects to ensure that being punched in the face would never be the same again. And just who is that guy wearing sunglasses in the video? You guessed it: it's Kinect's Kudo Tsunoda.
MOTORSTORM - PS3
While the next-generation's go-to environmental feature is looking increasingly likely to be rain, for PlayStation 3 it was all about mud. Like Killzone's trailer, much of MotorStorm's announcement trailer eventually turned out to be target footage, but one look at those mud-covered sand buggies was enough to convince most into pre-ordering a PS3.
THE GETAWAY - PS3
One of the few games to be shown running in-engine, it's no real surprise that The Getaway has dated the most out of Sony's initial PS3 reveal. Team Soho's brief tour of London left us impressed at the time, but these days, the low-res textures and low-poly models seem surprisingly sub-par for a tech demo.
UNCHARTED: DRAKE'S FORTUNE - PS VITA
As Sony's latest poster boy for visual quality, it seems fairly likely that we'll see a glimpse of Nathan Drake during tonight's show. At the time of Vita's reveal (or NGP as it was known back then), Sony used Drake's latest adventure to show off the handheld's visual and physical capabilities, like its rear touchpad and dual analogue sticks. And there hasn't been a game on the platform that's looked as good since.
FINAL FANTASY VIII TECH DEMO - PS2
Hair physics were a big thing in the world of computing at the time of PlayStation 2's announcement - and what better way to show off the console's capabilities than with Squall and Rinoa's free-flowing locks? It looks dated now, of course, and advances in motion-capture mean that the animation doesn't look nearly as impressive today as it did back then. But at the time, Final Fantasy VIII's dance sequence was lovely.
GRAN TURISMO 3 - PS2
Talking of hair, Ridge Racer's Reiko Nagase offered another cheeky flick in this PS2 tech demo. But it wouldn't be a PlayStation hardware announcement without some shots of supercars unhealthily addicted to Turbo Wax, and this brief glimpse at Gran Turismo running on PlayStation 2 was one of the most memorable in the platform holder's history. Until Gran Turismo 5, at least...
GRAN TURISMO 5 - PS3
Even if it's a split-second tease at a future Gran Turismo, Polyphony will almost certainly have something to show on Wednesday having proved its visual prowess with previous games in the series. One of the few in-engine trailers to be shown during PS3's announcement, the glimpse at Gran Turismo 5's sweeping vistas and animated pit crews sent car enthusiasts' engines into overdrive, before having them burned out years later following the game's countless delays. Here's hoping Yamauchi can get the next Gran Turismo out a little closer to launch next time around...
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