The Wednesday letters page is surprised to hear just how successful Spider-Man was, as another reader chimes in Stadia’s failure.
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With all the hype around The Last Of Us TV show at the moment it got me and a friend arguing over its overall quality and whether it counts as the best PlayStation exclusive. I argued that it, together with the sequel, was, but he felt that God Of War was better.
I’ve also heard Bloodborne mentioned as the best but that’s not really my type of game (or his) and I feel overall most people wouldn’t vote for it. So, if it is down to those two what do people think? I argued that The Last Of Us was more original, more cinematic, and had a better story. He argued that God Of War was more original (!), had better action, and better characters.
For me, both franchises are excellent and at the top of the game in terms of what Sony is able to produce. Since Ragnarök only just came out I’m happy to see what Naughty Dog does next. Or rather in terms of single-player games I am. I can’t say I’m too excited about the thought of a multiplayer spin-off…
I don’t believe for a second that Naughty Dog has any intention of making a game with a story anything like Elden Ring. Perhaps I’m just getting sick of hearing about them at the moment but I fear Naughty Dog are only getting more conceited with every accolade, which makes it increasingly likely that they’ll ever change. Which I feel is a shame as they’re obviously talented.
Naughty Dog’s idea of environmental storytelling is stuck in the Fallout 3 cliché of ‘Oh, look there’s some dead bodies, I wonder if this strangely detailed note will explain exactly how they died.’ FromSoftware wants you to interpret their world; there is no right answer, it’s whatever you think it is and your experience has caused you to believe.
It’s no wonder that The Last Of Us works so well as a TV show as it’s just a linear, straightforward story that never even needed to be a game. You could never make a show of Elden Ring and if you even tried it would prove you understood nothing about the game.
I agree with Danson, I’m going to pre-order the PlayStation VR2. I had the first one and I loved it. The only problem was that you could see the pixels. The new one has a real upgrade, which should sort it out. Yes, it is expensive but it is a serious bit of kit and I want to play Horizon: Call Of The Mountain.
Seen a preview of someone playing and you’re floating down a stream going by Tallnecks and he said it just took his breath away. I understand it’s expensive and not everyone can afford it but the money I’ve saved after now being picky over the £70 price tag on games has helped me save some money for it and GC do you think you will be reviewing the VR2 before it’s out or will it be a few days later?
GC: We don’t know yet.
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Sequel to Sickening
Due to being ill between Christmas and the new year I haven’t been able to participate in much gaming recently. I have a massive backlog of games so last week I jumped back in with God Of War Ragnarök. It’s a great game but I’m experiencing bouts of nausea while playing that lasts into the following day. I don’t remember this happening to me while playing the first game.
I sometimes have this with first person shooter games but not usually with third person games like God Of War. Has anyone else experienced this? Also, does anyone have any tips on relieving gaming related nausea in general? I fully intend to complete the game so I’m hoping I just ‘get used to it’ in time!
I hope Kiran doesn’t find stupidly long loading times a frustration as he will find that with Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. On PlayStation 4 loading times were in the minutes. I literally started playing again on PlayStation 5 yesterday with the PS Plus version and my first loading time was just over 30 seconds – just about acceptable.
Next death was longer but under a minute.
Since then loading times have varied in the range of 15 to 45 seconds. I still won’t play on hardest setting for this reason – I am happy to die a lot and ‘get good’ but not if I’m punished with a blank screen for too long.
I got the Founder’s Edition of Stadia and I actually didn’t mind paying for the games separately. Although I would usually wait until a rare seasonal sale.
The technology was perfect for my needs, as I was covering football matches up and down the country. A testament to Stadia being that I could play 15 minutes of Red Dead Redemption 2 at half time on my low spec laptop, much to the amazement of everyone in the press box. Also, a testament to the incredible Wi-Fi at Harrogote Town FC.
The problem was always the catalog of games. This is why I unsubscribed and eventually bought an Xbox Series X and Game Pass, although new titles that interest me have also been few and far between on Xbox. The Xbox cloud alternative is also quite far behind where Stadia was in my opinion and so I haven’t really used it.
Amazingly spectacular sales
I didn’t know Spider-Man was Sony’s biggest game, that’s kind of crazy to me. I wouldn’t say it’s my favorite but the game’s good, but I wouldn’t have guessed 33 million good. There’s certainly worse games that have been that popular game but why if it prints money have all these other Marvel games done so badly?
I know Spider-Man’s popular but looking at the films there’s nothing to suggest he’s that much more popular than other superheroes that all their games keep flopping. I also wouldn’t say that game was any better than Guardians Of The Galaxy or anything else than Avengers. Just seems surprisingly to me.
Old kids on the block
So at what point do we just up and say that Microsoft aren’t very good at being a video games publisher? They’ve been in this business for over two decades and yet they’re still making schoolboy eras and acting like they’re the new kind on the block and just getting their bearings.
I’m not going to get into the fact that they’re just trying to buy their success now because anyone would do that if they had the money, especially Sony, but what gets me is how badly they’re handling their developers and this Playground Games exodus is the latest example.
So now all the top people from Forza Horizon have left and probably people who are working on, or at least helping out on, the new Fable as well. A game they’d already paid Eidos Montréal to help out with. The same as they did with Crystal Dynamics and Perfect Dark, after half the original developers all left.
It’s just a matter of waiting and seeing now for which of their newly bought studios is going to be the first to be shut down. These mismanagement problems have been stewing for decades now and nothing’s been done. Starfield and Redfall were almost done when they bought Bethesda, I shall be very interested, and not very optimistic, to see the first game made entirely under Microsoft’s reign. I imagine it’ll be a long wait.
When can we expect your review of Fire Emblem Engage?
GC: Before launch.
I hope that email highlighting the technicalities of zombies vs. the undead infected is doing some kind of meta Partridge joke otherwise we’re in tungsten tipped screws and shower curtain territory of pedantry here. Do you see any upset zombies here? What’s next? tannoy/public address system discussions.
GC: Someone should’ve trademarked the word zombie.
This week’s Hot Topic
Since this will be the first Hot Topic of 2023, the subject for this weekend’s Inbox is what new game are you looking forward to the most?
We’ve got a detailed preview of the year here, but as long as your choice has a reasonable chance of being released in 2023 you can talk about anything you like, on any format.
What has you excited about your choices and how do you think they’ll perform, both critically and commercially? Is there anything prominent you’ve already given up on and what do you wish was coming out this year but isn’t?
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The small print
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