What A Drop!

I don’t normally do but this but, this week’s Playstation drop. Is just too fantastical. So abhorrent in its goodness that I just have an over whelming need to share it.  and share it I will nobody can stop me. Actually, please don’t stop me.

1st up is a big one for me. A game that could answer the immortal gaming  question. The question comes from a review of the original Doom all those years ago. The reviewers question was ” what if you could talk to the monsters instead of having to kill them”. He was laughed at by the larger gaming community but something in stuck with me and I guess it stuck with Toby Fox as Undertale his first labour of gaming love may finally help us answer that question as Undertale is not quite your normal RPG you see, as you  are able to talk your way out of any ”enemy” confrontations. Apparently you do not have to kill a single monster you come across. All can be talked too and talked round. It’s possible to finish the game with a level 1 character. Of course it’s just as possible to kill everyone you meet on sight, in the more traditional gaming sense. After all, sometimes you just want to kill stuff.  I am going to try the pacifist approach though and not just because I know I will be rubbish at the fighting. The soundtrack sounds amazing as well. Wait theres more, it’s cross-buy. Get those Vita’s out

 

2nd up is the game that every one has high hopes even if we have been let down so many times before and its Sonic Mania. Maybe, this time our childhood memories will be relived as we jump, dash and above all battle Dr. Robotnik in an all new Sonic game, that looks surprisingly like all the old classic Sonic games, back when they were good, and of course this version has lead programmer Christian Whitehead, the  man who made the Sonic mobile ports as brilliant as they are. It even starts with the wonderful SEGA

2. Matterfall or as it will be called in my house; another game that makes me whimper like a child and throw my controller on the couch. It’s not Housemarque’s fault, I am just not very good at any of their games whether it’s the beautiful Resogun or the thumb stick breaking Dead Nation, Housemarque seem intent on making brilliant games they just happen to be games that show me just how adequate my gaming skill is and seem intent on showing it to me again and again ( maybe one day I will learn my lesson) as I just can’t stop buying their beautifull, controller breaking, rage quitting games.

4. Nidgogg II What can I say about this is you haven’t played the original one on one fencing extravaganza go, down load the Playstation Now trial and give it a whirl. Its lots of fun. Will the second game be as good? We will soon find out, the art style of the new game has got some people worried, but I have high hopes for it. Especially as it now looks like it has a story mode

 

5. Paranormal Activity: The Lost Soul. maybe this game could just be called don’t play alone. This looks terrifying and its playable in VR which makes me somehow  way too scared to play and also really want to play. I know this doesn’t make sense but it just looks too good to miss.  Expect a YouTube video of me crying into my headset and asking for my Mum as soon as I can get a VR headset to play this.

Waiting for The Download

Just a quick post today as I am currently, looking for something….Anything to do whilst Thumper, downloads to my PS4. I whisper the next sentence: I think XBox live may have a quicker download speed   That can’t be true. Although right now as I slowly watch the progress bar make its way to a 100% it really does feel longer. In fact I am sure at one point it actually started to  stop downloading. I am sure it was just testing me, to make sure I am paying attention; because, what else can you do as your chosen move, game or what ever else, ever so slowly makes its way to 100%

So allow me if you will to pass some of my boredom onto as I list the top five reasons I had for buying Thumper. A game that’s so strange its developers gave it is own genre. Rhythm Hell. Yep, Drool called it rhythm hell.

 

  1.    It looks incredible. Have you seen it on YouTube? Watched a video review? If the answer is yes, you will know what I mean. Who doesn’t want to see that little beetle liek creature, hurtle through track after track, sweating as you do trying to stay alive and all the while dancing along to the hypnotic beats of that crazy soundtrack
  2.   That soundtrack. It sounds incredible, have a listen yourself. It sounds inspiring and must be an absolute joy as you hammer your joypads buttons in time to it.
  3. VR. Please don’t tell my wife, but when I do get VR. That’s the bit you can’t tell her. I want to have a little stack of games ready to play, a counter argument to the cost of the VR. When she talks about how much it will cost and it will cost a lot as we are factoring in Move Controllers, a camera and the gun here, I can say but wait, I already have x amount of games and maybe just maybe, taht will swing the argument in my favor, if she plays Thumper and enjoys teh visuals, imagine how much better it will look in VR I will say.
  4. Its made by  a company called Drool. I don’t know why but, that name makes me smile and by the looks of how complicated some of the latter levels are. Drooling is what I will be doing as all of my concentration will be else where.
  5. Its in the sale. I know, never buy anything just because its on sale. I just dont think I would have seen it, if it wasn’t in this months playstation sale. As I am trying to finish of my backlog( another point in the VR section) I just don’t think I would have seen it. Just don’t ask me why I was in the sale section, if I was tryign to clear my back log. I have no answer for you 🙂

Video and picture are not mine. All rights to the owners

The Race to the Bottom

A quandary.

Reading an article a few days ago by the the author  Philip Pullman on why the cover price of books should never  ever be lowered has got me thinking you see the author feels that the price on the book should be the price paid no matter who is buying it, regardless if the book is bought by a school, reading group or somebody just popping into their local book shop.

 

This made me think. Firstly, like most people I do enjoy the odd sale or two or twelve. I have been known, on occasion to makes list of games I would like to buy knowing that at some point will be added to a sale. The sale could be by the publisher an on line store or a company like Amazon but at some point that game you want will be reduced in price. I have also been guilty of doing this in bookshops, on many an occasion i have rummaged through a bookshops collection, to stumble across a book that catches my attention and then immediately flip the book over to the see the price at the back of the book and then just as quickly  whip my phone out of my pocket to check the kindle price on the Amazon website. Is this is okay ? I am not sure. The book will normally be at least half the price on a website and I will normally buy it from the website (who wants to loose money) and then blame the company I am not buying the book from for not keep up with current prices. If they had been able to match the price of the internet, I would of course been able to buy it from there.   Never do I think of the cost of running the shops, the cost of the lights, salaries for the very knowledgeable book shop staff who have in certain occasions directed me to a book that I would never have found with out their help and a book that I am now very definitely not going to buy from them, after checking the price.

 

I do the same with games

Again I blame it on the net. I could be happily looking through my local games store, spot something that could be a nice addition to the backlog and immediately and without hesitation check the price on line. Again, nine times out of ten the price will be cheaper on line and I will buy it. I used to feel that this was a good tactic, nobody has an unlimited supply of money to spend games, books etc and I thought by buying at the cheapest possible price, I was giving myself the best possible opportunity of playing all of the games I wanted as I could buy more games with the same money. Possibly even playing some games that would normally have passed me by simply because spending ten pounds on a game is a lot easier to do and means you are more likely to take a chance on something.

Am I wrong?

The original article https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/aug/04/philip-pullman-leads-writers-condemning-pernicious-book-discounts. Shows just how much money is given to authors and where I don’t have have much sympathy for the more established authors. A million 10p’s is still a lot of 10p’s  is does stop a lot of new voices coming through and I worry that if its a large practice in the book world to make the author pay for discounts given to people it must also be a problem in the worlds of movies, games and everything else we enjoy.

Does it mean the end of entertainment?

If this trend continues is this the end of most of the forms of entertainment we currently enjoy, will games developers stop making games because there is just not enough money in it. Will Spotify’s payments to artists get ever lower? Will the payments become so low that only the large mega musicians can survive as the little bands just can’t get a record deal as they could never afford the cost of the instruments to start with?

For Freedom! (or something like that)

Dropped into a vast jungle, I quickly grab my weapons and run. I run knowing that the only way out of this nightmare of a hell hole, that I have somehow found myself  in isn’t to hide and hope for someone; better, someone bigger, stronger and hopefully armed with a never ending supply of bullets isn’t going to appear out of nowhere and make it all better. No that isn’t going to happen. It isn’t going to happen because that person, who is bigger, better, stronger and happily, armed with a never ending supply of bullets is ME and I am here to do some saving. Not just of the many captives my enemy seems intent on littering the battlefield with but also my enemy. For you see, I am here to also liberate the devils. To free them from their evil overlords and help them see the light, the light of freedom, of liberty and above all else America. No I am not here to discuss current  American politics dear reader, please rest easy. I am of course here to talk about games and one game in particular and that game is: BROFORCE

A game that has until this weekend sat it my pile; of had a quick play and I really should get back to it games. A game that was only played this weekend in an attempt to show that graphics don’t matter. A good game is a good game regardless of their graphical capabilities (although a game has to get the sound effects right)

Yes dear reader a game so good it helped me win an argument.

and just for clarity the other games we played were: Super Meat Boy, Hotline Miami, Towerfall Ascension and (my current gaming crush) Super Hot but it was Broforce that won the debate for me, the one we kept coming back to it, to have ”just one more go” a lie that all gamer’s have told themselves on occasion and a lie we managed to tell ourselves for more than two hours as we constantly hit the retry button death after death. Death’s that had us laughing in their downright stupidity one second to almost controller smashing the next as we were blown to smithereens by an explosive barrel we really should have seen and definitely should not have been standing on top of.

Maybe its because we are 80’s children

Maybe as we were big fans of 80’s and some 90’s action movies in our teens and this game actually let you play as the ”stars” in this game is what clouded our judgment but we didn’t think. It could also have been that in the earlier levels at least the reward for rescuing a a captive from the enemy wasn’t some arbitrary points or just an extra live, it was that sometimes once certain criteria were met  you were rewarded with a new action hero to play as and as each and every new character gained was announced in extreme 80’s style with the word BRO added somewhere in the title (think Rambro or BroDredd) our tiny little minds were giving something to laugh at and also a reason to keep playing as we each wanted to be the next to find Snake Broskin or my personal favourite the Brominator. Still we agreed the game was better than the gimmicks. It was the way it played. The way a well timed grenade could clear out most of a level the one explosion causing a chain reaction that went on for maybe 30 seconds each explosion leading to the next. Its also tuff ( at least for us) With a one hit and your dead rule. The game is hard sometimes forcing you to plan your attacks, especially against the level bosses as these things could sometimes fell impossible to kill until you had learnt there moves and worked out your strategy for how to beat them.

 

So basically, does a game have to the prettiest graphics of them all to survive? no of course not. A great game is a great game no matter the picture it presents.

The video below is not mine but it may go a little way to show how strange this game is

 

 

 

 

Animal Killing (in games)

Great, absolutely, frigging  fantastic. I need a new satchel, to carry all my crap. Crap that I haven’t even found a use for yet, and yet for some reason I want to hold onto because  well you’ve played a few of these type of games before and gaming logic suggests that someday, somewhere in what could be another 40 hours of game as yet unseen that one, bronze jeweled clay plot could be just the thing to save the prince/princess and get you the true ending. Ending  number 1. But sadly this time, it’s not for you after you tossed it away to make room for yet another herb health potion your only get ending number 2 the one where you still won the day and everyone was mostly fine, apart from that prince/princess, they were eaten. Sorry. Yes, eaten by that horrible gorilla Cyborg, the one covered in Jewels,the one that really, really likes bronze jewel clay pots and you see, you didn’t have any and so, even though you thought nothing of it at the time as you still completed all the stupid fetch the jewels quests he gave you at the time. Why do you want Jewels you thought, There is no where left to stick them you thought. But you were wrong, there was room for one more and in not getting that one, that one extra shiny one that  you tossed away some 40 hours ago and can’t even remember throwing away now.   Leaves you stuck with ending number 2. Nobody ever wants ending number two. So what do you? You keep everything you come across. You steal everything that isn’t nailed down and that means ever bigger satchel bags and bigger satchel bags mean in the case of my current She-God among men simulator or Horizon Zero Dawn as some people like to call it killing small defenseless animals. Which I hate to do. Now it’s not just Horizon’s fault there are many others that are equally culpable, Red Dead Redemption I am looking right into your animal skinning eyes!

 

An in game animal activist

I just hate, killing anything small and furry. Actually after playing Horizon add anything large and mechanical to that list as well. In fact let’s just say anything with the remotest of animal traits, I have a hard time killing. I will happily run through a bandit camp killing and pillaging as I go all for some tiny and mostly insignificant reward. Where if you ask me to kill an animal I will agonize over it for ages and only kill the tiny little creatures if it’s absolutely necessary and there just is no other way. Is it too much to ask for just one vendor to have one satchel bag for sale! Hopefully as I progress through the game, somebody somewhere will sell me one.

 

Its getting Strange

This is something that has only developed lately and is purely down to just how good Horizon really is. You see, with the mechanical animals in the game, acting like they would do in the real world, if we all lived in a distopia, where giant mechanical beats run wild that is I have developed a kind of strategy to fighting the animals in the game a strategy of only attacking if I am being attacked attitude. Now I am sure that’s not the way the game is meant to be played. But I can’t help it they are just to darn real.

It’s not fair.

Now back to admiring the scenery and hiding, a lot.

It’s Sale time

Its that time of year again. A time some people have saved for. Made lists for, guessed what will be included and of course, most of the time been wrong. What I am talking about you ask? Well, its sale time, you see, the time of year when video games companies gang together to laugh at us, their virtual tills ringing ever fuller as we the mere mortal games players keep adding to our ever growing back log by  forever adding just one more game, and on this one, just because its really cheap and we have heard good reviews about it. Will we ever play it? Maybe, but probably not as the list of games we just have to play grows ever longer I think at this point if I sat down to play just half of the games on my list it would probably take the rest of my live .

 

Trying to Be Strong

Have to be better, so many games, so little time as they say. This I have been, better, slightly. Managed to skip straight through the Steam sale ( very proud) but the Microsoft Sales got me ( not so proud) fell into the trap and purchased both Superhot and The Witness both excellent games and both felt like ”deals” with £15 of The Witness and £10 of Superhot. Slightly sad to see that the PS Sale which has just started at the time of writing has The Witness for less than £15, if you have not had a chance to get and you like puzzles you will really enjoy it.

 

 Its So Hard

We are weak. As my backlog is so big, I thought hard on how  to fix it. Playing some of the games was the obvious start but, the problem is that there are just so many good games out at the moment that’s it is hard to give your love and attention to just one and doesn’t a game you have had for a while seem, a little less desirable than a new and shiny game. A game that looks so good in those wonderful YouTube videos. So I had to think of a new answer, to find a way that would still let me buy a few newer games and also help me save a few pounds by being a bit older than those freshly released. The answer or so I thought was game of the year lists. That was a mistake. I checked in with the www. Polygon.com website and went to their game of the year list for 2016 old enough for the games to be a little cheaper than freshly released and also for them to frequently pop up on sales lists. With my thinking being that I could get one of the games every couple of months as and when one popped up for sale. I was dong so well. The first game that came up was the incredible Firewatch, enjoying that so much I waited for the next one to fall slightly in price and nothing did, or maybe I missed it, but still I waited churning through my backlog quite happily, until Superhot popped up on my list and again it is a fantastic game and again I felt really happy with my choice. Until and here is where I have boxed myself into a bit of a corner the recent Playstation Store sale which has, pretty much all of the rest of that game of the year list on sale, right now. It includes, Doom,Titanfall, Inside and The Last Guardian all games I am very eager to play and I don’t know what to do. Do I suck it up and buy them all? Only adding to my backlog or take my chances and buy one. Sticking to my guns in the very probable likely hood that once they have been on sale once they will ineviatabily be on sale again and again. Of course I could just buy them all on disc and save anyway but I like the lottery of the website sales.

Happy gaming

P.S The reason Polygon was chosen is that I found their list of games to my individual taste, it really does cover all bases. Please see the list for your self below.

https://www.polygon.com/2016-game-of-the-year

SUPERHOT

Yes, I know you are Super Hot. You lovely reader you!

Apart from you, there is also a game called Super Hot and and that is what I would like to talk about today.

Now for the Gumpf

SuperHot  was originally created as an entry to the 7 day FPS challenge, the demonstration was so well received that it led to a browser based demonstration (which is still live), that again was so well received it led to the idea of a full blown game being thrown around, which led, as these things so often do now into the idea being put to Kick starter for backing. Which it duly received being released on Microsoft Windows on the 25th of Feb 2016 and the XBox one version releasing on the 3rd of May 2016.

Right

Now we have that out of the way it’s time to talk about the game it’s self and what a game. Now, it’s a FPS which i know can turn a lot people but, don’t go. SuperHot is unlike any other first person shooter I have played. For the simple reason of time. Where in most shooters bullets whistle about you as a you go about your heroic or not so heroic duties. The bullets raining  down at you as you dodge weave and mainly just die trying to get out of the way. In SuperHot however you have time, time really, for the most part is on your side in this one for and here is the big hook for the game. TIME ONLY MOVES WHEN YOU DO. There you go such a clever idea I had to type it in capitals. For example there is a man holding a shotgun and as soon as he sees at you he points,takes aim and fires his shotgun straight at you leading to normally only one outcome, you are dead. Back to to the start of the level for you. Better luck next time. When time is on your side however,things are slightly different. The same scenario in SuperHot  is slightly different because as soon as you see said man with Shotgun you stop moving, you survey your surroundings, moving ever so slowly towards your target watching as the gun is ever so slowly aimed at you, as you move almost at lightening speed compared to your assailant, still you assess every option looking for an opening, maybe you see a pool cue sitting on a table, you could pick it up, throw it at the man, knocking the gun out of his hands, giving you the chance to race forward and pick it up before he does. Maybe you use a pool ball, maybe you just get into a better position. Maybe you have just watched the Matrix and feel like playing as Neo watching as the shotgun is ever so slowly raised and then fired at you the shotgun pellets flying through the air. You don’t panic in fact a great smile spreads across as you inch around each pellet getting nearer and nearer your target and his inevitable demise.

You See

Superhot isn’t really a shooter. It’s more of a puzzle game as you will constantly be over run with enemies, having to think on your feet as you dodge a fist or maneuver out of the way of a ninja star flying precariously close to your head as you at the same time fire a bullet into your nearest assailant from a gun you just punched out of your hand and caught in mid air. It really is that good.

Its coming to VR

Indeed it is, if you have any of the recent virtual reality devices it looks like SuperHot is already out on both the Vive and Rift and if teh YouTube videos it looks like its as close to us realizing our Matrix fantasies as we will get for sometime. Don’t worry PlayStation VR people. Its releases for PlayStation VR this week. Let me know how it plays 🙂