Games Inbox: Are you planning to get a PlayStation 5?
The evening Inbox is impressed by how well Zelda: Breath Of The Wild VR works, as one reader defends Super Mario Maker 2.
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A date to aim for
Having always thought the PlayStation 5 would release winter 2020 I am not surprised that Sony have now said as much. Last year, when the next gen was first being tentatively spoken about, there were a few people who thought it would be released in 2019 (in fact someone in the comments section guaranteed us it would release 2019!) which let’s be honest was never a possibility, not with the way the PlayStation 4 was still selling.
Now at least I have some time to get the cash together, as I will be purchasing a 4K TV to go with the PlayStation 5 .Those PlayStation 5 specs indicate that the actual console will be at least £400 so plenty of time to get saving!
GC: To be fair there were some analysts saying 2019 as well, as unlikely as it seemed.
A useful lesson
So it seems Sony are in a pretty good position right now. Company as a whole doing better than ever, PlayStation 4 one of the best-selling consoles ever, and their next gen plans moving ahead without any apparent concern for the competition.
The problem with Sony is that they’ll ‘turn arrogant’ after doing well for a long time but in that instance I think Days Gone will actually be good for them. It shows they’re not infallible and that you can’t start believing your own hype enough that you start taking quality for granted.
For me the quality of the PlayStation 4’s first party games has been the reason it’s the only console I’ve bought this gen, and looking at the sales numbers it seems like I’m not the only one. Keep that up and Sony will have my money in the next gen as well.
Voice of experience
In response to the person saying Super Mario Maker 2 feels like port, I have to disagree.
I racked up around 4,000 hours on the original and from only a couple of short trailers so far they have shown lots of new features! Some may seem like gimmicks at first glance, but everything involves new gameplay ideas.
GameXplain made a 1.5 hour analysis video of the first trailer because there were so many details people missed at first glance.
Nintendo have definitely listened to the fans on this one.
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Before and after
RE: Station’s letter about open worlds being set during the apocalypse. I think that would be much more interesting. I actually thought the first Leon level of Resident Evil 6 was pretty fun, charging through the streets during the outbreak.
It would be cool to play through the open world as an apocalypse happens, then play afterwards seeing the world before and after would be an interesting dynamic; revisiting a certain area and seeing how it’s been impacted by whatever disaster has happened.
RE: Campbell. I appreciate we all work long hours and nobody wants to see anybody else exploited but boycotting the games industry sounds a little excessive. I realise the formats are not directly comparable, but would you swerve your latest cinema trip because the sound engineer had a long day?
If, however, employment law (in whichever country they work) is being compromised then I would be in complete agreement with you. I’m sure people imagine the offices developers work in as some sort of Willy Wonka-esque type scenario.
GC: That seems an unnecessarily callous way of misrepresenting the reports, which we can only assume you haven’t read in detail.
Ketl said the other day that they hadn’t heard anything about crunch-like working hours from the film industry in the same way that we do for games. It can certainly be a problem, and I’ve talked to people who have done 18-hour days on set, and 12 is fairly standard.
There’s supposed to be an 11-hour turnaround between wrapping one day and call time the next, but when a production only has cast, crew, and kit for a limited amount of time that’s not always possible if the film is to get finished.
It does seem to be a bit more of a problem in the low budget world, where people are starting out and they’re more likely to put up with things for the sake of the credit, and less likely to get proper overtime, but it can still be very hard work in the big budget realm. I’ve certainly done 90+ hour weeks, although mine was one of the more sedate jobs on set!
There are moves afoot to try to improve conditions though, and hopefully the game industry can follow suit.
Could still be worse though – a farmer mate of mine does 120-hour weeks during harvest! I’d call his job a bit more vital than making films or games though…
Sparky the Yak
No idea how Nintendo have done this or what magic they have used but it looks and plays amazing!
I would advise getting a cheap headstrap off eBay if you intend playing the whole game in VR.
Not going to write anymore, got to get back to Zelda.
GC: Super Mario Odyssey isn’t too exciting, but we were shocked at how well Zelda turned out.
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A series of unfortunate assumptions
‘Tis a shame about Switch Persona 5… Atlus’s president was interviewed a month or so back and he alluded that Shin Megami Tensei V’s development was taking time because it was ‘their first large Switch title’ and they were getting used to the platform. The power of hindsight, eh.
Anyway, the most interesting elements of this whole saga are Nintendo’s decisions and the perils of fanbase hype. Like GC said, that Nintendo would turn over a large part of one of their core franchises in Smash, a game this is now the second or third highest Switch seller, to advertise an exclusive for a rival company is just baffling. Or even a multiplatform spin-off, since I’d have thought Scramble would be on Switch anyway, just like Persona 4 Arena was on Xbox.
On the hype, I can’t remember it being so far off the mark on a game in recent memory. And given the long term requests for a port, and alignment of the hardcore Switch and Persona fanbases, it’s a perfect storm for a video game backlash (a quick look on YouTube and Twitter confirms the fanboy rage). That Atlus or even Nintendo didn’t step in to gently correct the direction of rumour travel is also baffling. The bad PR could have easily been avoided, though once they got involved in the rumours they’d probably never get out of it.
Maybe in Japan… there is no hype for a Switch port, and it’s entirely Western driven? Or they’ll do one once development resources are freed up? Or Sony have the exclusive tied up permanently or timed? Or some Japanese business culture honour means they won’t do it? Who knows.
GC: It is all very odd.
Everything I’ve heard about Mortal Kombat 11 on the Switch suggests it’s a very good port, if you accept the downgrade in graphics. Still not going near it though because of the microtransactions.
Days Gone looks like a jacked-up Xbox 360 game. The whole dudebro biker thing is a real turn-off for me. Are any of the main characters likeable, GC?
GC: Not really, no.
This week’s Hot Topic
The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Grackle, who asks what old game has aged the worst?
Going back to a much-loved video game can often be a traumatising experience, as something you remember as being amazing is revealed to have aged less than gracefully, but what’s your worst experience with an old title?
Was the problem the old-fashioned graphics, the controls, or gameplay that seems too simplistic or unfair nowadays? What still works about the game and is there a modern equivalent that does the same sort of things but better?
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The small print
New Inbox updates appear twice daily, every weekday morning and afternoon. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.
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