Games Inbox: Nintendo Switch for Christmas, Praey For The Gods review, and Metro Exodus love

The Wednesday Inbox is shocked at how good the graphics in The Matrix Awakens are, as a reader questions the need for a Silent Hill remake.

PLEASE NOTE: As we get our own Christmas and New Year content ready for the end of the year, please consider sending in your own festive Reader’s Feature to run over the Christmas break. It can be on any subject but if there’s something you’ve been meaning to write in about, but never got around to, now would be a good time for it.

To join in with the discussions yourself email [email protected]

Christmas console
So it’s getting close to Christmas now and my girlfriend is badgering me about what I want, because I can’t make up my mind. I got a PlayStation 5 last year and there’s nothing else big I especially want. So the idea of getting a Switch came up and obviously I wanted to get the best one, the OLED model – which is basically sold out everyone and goes for a mark-up of around £350.

We can afford it, we’re doing okay, but my question to the Inbox is whether it’s worth it at this point? The format is getting old now and although Nintendo will never admit it, it’s bound to get replaced relatively soon, I would assume in the next one to three years. Although I realise that assumptions and Nintendo don’t really go together.

But I’m worried about the lack of new games this year, which has basically been Metroid Dread and nothing else. I realise that Nintendo’s way of working has been hit bad by the pandemic but are we really expecting anything better for next year? There’s a lot of games with vague 2022 dates but nothing specific, which makes me worry that they’ll just be delayed again.

It just seems a bit odd to buy a new console for a format that’s had so few new releases in the last two years, even if there are outside reasons for it. What do people think? Does the Switch still have life in it or have I missed the boat and should just wait for the next one?

Next gen awakens
Just gave The Matrix Awakens demo another spin and I cannot emphasise this enough, but the graphics look absolutely unreal in it.

It’s mind boggling that Epic were able to put together a playable technical marvel of this calibre on the current gen systems at this stage in their console cycles.

Remember that iconic T-Rex tech demo on the PS1? This elicits a similarly incredulous, jaw-dropping effect in my opinion, and it’s a fascinating insight into what the state of art of this medium will look like a couple of years into this gen.
Galvanized Gamer

Exodus of players
Metro Exodus has been on my backlog for a long time, ever since your 9/10 review, and I’ve finally got round to starting it following the next gen upgrade. I’m still pretty early on – just having finished the first large open world (ish) area you come to – and I am, despite your pretty glowing review, quite shocked by how good it is.

I know some gamers get fed up with sequels, but this series of games has shown the benefit of iterative design, with each game improving on the last significantly.

The newfound freedom in Exodus, away from the mostly cramped, confined corridors of Last Light is such a (literal) breath of fresh air, with my own personal favourite marketing buzzwords – emergent gameplay – abounding throughout the semi-open world, with its optional objectives and encouraged exploration.

My only real quibble so far is the map, goodness me would it have killed Artyom to have written his notes on the map ever so slightly larger? Perhaps I just need a bigger TV. Very minor quibble aside, I’m really looking forward to firing the PlayStation 5 up tonight, and as a recent Hot Topic discussed, you know you’re enjoying a game when you’re thinking about it at your work desk (aka the kitchen table).

All the best to you and yours for Christmas.
Henshin Agogo

GC: We’ve never understood why it ended up being so ignored. It really is very good.

E-mail your comments to: [email protected]

Instant game collection
Just a quick tip to anyone. Buy or make yourself the cheapest PC or an old laptop you can, just so you can get a pretty decent collection of PC games for absolutely nothing. Then in the future, as long as you remember your login details, you can upgrade to your gaming rig – who knows how long you’ll be waiting for a graphics card.

So far I’ve got Rage 2, Control, Deliverance: Kingdom Come, and many more all for free. I’ve also got Subnautica 1 and 1.5 for a fiver each with the vouchers Epic gives out at random times. You might not agree with their pay to win competition against Steam but for these prices you would be an idiot to ignore them.

Stealth release
GC was mentioning Shadow Of The Colossus and its impact last week and then Praey For The Gods released completely out of the blue on PlayStation 5 yesterday. I’d assumed it had sunk into the abyssal scar of development hell but obviously not. Only problem is there’s not a single proper review out which isn’t always a good sign (hello Cyberpunk 2077).

So can GC spent the necessary 25 gold doubloons to play it and inform the loyal followers whether it’s worth a punt?

GC: At this point in the year, it’s more a question of whether we’ll have time. We know it’s been in early access but it seems very unwise for them to release it like that, unless they actively don’t want reviews.

Not bothered
After thinking for a few days about the Reader’s Feature I’ve realised that cross-play will never come to an end. Sony didn’t want it to happen but said OK, we will give it a try and Xbox was all for it and I think still are. Game developers are making so much money from cross-play they’re not bothered about cheaters, they’re bothered about money.

Activision proved that when they changed the terms and conditions to say you could get a ban but not an outright ban. Xbox brought out Halo and even though they knew cheaters would be in every lobby still allowed PC to play with Xbox, so they’re not bothered. This year’s Call Of Duty I’ve turned my back on, partly for how they sack workers to save money but then give the big man more. But it’s cheaters as well.

I’m a PlayStation fan but I’ve had a right laugh with Xbox players, if it was PlayStation and Xbox only it might tempt me back but they need to sort out how they treat the workers. First, you don’t sack them like that and think it’s OK. The way it’s looking, next year’s Call Of Duty I’ll turn my back on as well, if they haven’t sorted themselves out. Cross-play is here to stay and will never stop because companies only care about money and while they are like that I won’t be spending my hard earned cash on them.

Build a new Hill
Assuming the Silent Hill remake was cancelled I wonder why? The original director is obviously right that it’s a difficult game to update but did they only realise that halfway through trying to make it?

I don’t really understand the obsession with trying to remake it though since a new sequel or reboot would work just as well. The second one is basically the same game anyway, so it’s not like the first one is some unique gem that you couldn’t just take the best bits from and make a new game for. With a bit of look that’ll be what this new Slitterhead game is.

Dream games
Further to last weekend’s Hot Topic I would like to add my belated thoughts.

The first game I ever dreamt about was the sublime Eternal Darkness on the GameCube. With its unsettling and foreboding atmosphere, playing it late at night meant it was conducive to permeating one’s dreams – not ideal!

The only other games to invade my thoughts by day and night were two magnificent Zeldas: Twilight Princess and Breath Of The Wild.

After playing Twilight Princess to completion, whenever I entered a large building I would subconsciously scan the wall and ceiling areas for likely hookshot points.

The same thing happened with Breath Of The Wild, although with that game I dreamt about it many times during my 200+ hours submerged in its wonderful world.

The reason, I think, is because of its sheer complexity, depth, and the variety of game mechanics it has. Nintendo’s peerless game design may lend itself to this kind of thing, compared to, say, the Souls games, which compared to Zelda are very one-note.

I’m sure some people have dreamt about Super Mario Odyssey, maybe even the Metroid games.

The less said about the Leisure Suit Larry ‘games’ the better.

By the way, GC, what do you think about It Takes Two winning Best Family Game at The Game Awards – hardly family friendly themes in that game. Do you think it won because they got fed up of Nintendo winning every year?
anthony B

GC: Let’s just say we didn’t vote for it.

Inbox also-rans
I thought the ending of The Game Awards was weird at the time. I mean, my brain was swimming by that time as it was like 4am, but it did seem like something had been cut out. Pity it was Bully 2, I’d really be up for that.

I love that the first time we hear of Peter Molyneux in years it’s him trying to taking advantage of NFT. Was he upset he’s not hated enough? I can just imagine his face when he saw the Ubisoft fallout.

This week’s Hot Topic
With The Game Awards being the last major reveal event of the year, the subject for this weekend’s Inbox asks what new game you’re most looking forward to… and what unannounced title you’re still hoping for.

What confirmed game are you most anticipating, regardless of when it’s due to be released, and why are you excited about it? What new game are you most hoping will be announced in the future (especially if it’s already rumoured), whether it’s a sequel, remake, or new game from a developer that hasn’t released anything in a while?

How excited do you get about games that are still months or years away and do you prefer to know about a game as soon as possible or only when there’s a lot to show?

E-mail your comments to: [email protected]

The small print
New Inbox updates appear every weekday morning, with special Hot Topic Inboxes at the weekend. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length and content.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word Reader’s Feature at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

You can also leave your comments below and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter.

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