It’s that time of year again, time to reflect on what you’re most thankful for while you’re lying on the couch in a tryptophan-induced daze. While Canadians like myself might have had our turkey day last month, I still think that it’s valuable to take stock of what you would normally take for granted.
Specifically, what are you thankful for in video games? Personally, I’m thankful that we’ve moved on to the next generation (eight years is a long time), that Nintendo can continue its run of quality games whether or not the system they’re on is actually selling, and that PC ports have gotten much better. Seriously, for most of the previous generation being a PC gamer could be a little rough at times. I’m also thankful that gaming keeps chugging along, despite the myriad of bumps it has had to sustain over the years.
I’m also thankful for the GamerSushi community. You guys are what keeps us going all these years. It’s gratifying to know there’s selection of people out there who are willing to read our ramblings, even if they don’t comment on them (maybe comment a bit more though). We know we haven’t had a new cast in a while, but we’re planning on recording at least one before the Christmas holiday. It probably doesn’t need to be said, but we’ll have a lot to talk about.
So, what are you guys thankful for? Happy Holidays!
You have to admire Valve, they really think out of the box. Between XP, trading cards, everything going on with Dota 2 (thanks Volvo for Diretide), they’re turning Steam into not only the premier digital game delivery service on the Internet, but also some sort of weird crowdsourced laboratory.
Take this recent move as a prime example. Steam users will now be able to leave reviews on games they have launched via Steam (purchase not required) without having to recommend it, which was the previous method of doing user reviews (indeed, any previous recommendations will be upgraded to reviews).
The user reviews will exist alongside the Metacritic scores on Steam. I think this is a really cool move for Steam, and I’m eager to copy/paste some GS reviews in there to see what happens (kidding!). What do you guys think about this? Have you written any reviews yet?
Source – Steam
One of the biggest shopping weeks of the year, the week of Thanksgiving isn’t just a good time for us Americans (sorry everyone else) to get some good game playing in—it’s also a great time to find some awesome deals on games. Whether you’re lining up for a Black Friday sale or staying at your computer to hunt for deals, it’s always nice to get a deal on a game you’ve been dying to play, but you didn’t want to spend full price on.
In case you guys weren’t aware, here are some of the Black Friday deals going on this week in various parts:
So with all of that information available to you, I thought I’d ask: what games are you hoping to catch on sale this week? Anything in particular that would be hard to pass up? Personally, I’ve got my eye out for PS Vita prices, since I’d love to have that for my PS4 for remote play. I’m also watching for certain 3DS games.
What about you guys? What are you looking for? Go!
The Wii U got some flack, and rightly so, for launching last year without any games. Well, it had Zombie U and some third-party cross-overs, but what I really mean is that it didn’t have a recognizable Nintendo title outside of New Super Mario Bros. U.
Flash forward a year later and the Wii U has a game that is not only a potential system seller but a game of the year contender as well. Super Mario 3D Worlds, a console-sized semi-sequel of the excellent Super Mario 3D Land available on the 3DS, brings four-player co-op to a 3D Mario game.
While a year is a long time to wait for a 3D Mario title, Super Mario 3D Worlds absolutely nails it in every aspect. The game looks gorgeous in a way that New Super Mario Bros. U never managed to, despite also being a high-definition game. From sun-dappled beaches to lava-ensconced castles, Worlds is one gorgeous game. Although the Wii U might be a little behind the Xbox One and PS4 in terms of horsepower, you wouldn’t know it looking at this game. The level design is clever as well, with this game boasting some of the most memorable Mario levels. My personal favorites are a Mario Kart-inspired course or a level that opens up into a huge savannah. Continue reading The High-Def Charm of Super Mario 3D Worlds
Much like my fellow GamerSushi editors who have made the jump to the next-gen, I’ve been sinking my teeth into the latest Assassin’s Creed game, Black Flag, over the past few days, although I am playing the PC version.
While the mouse and keyboard controls took a little getting used to, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag looks amazing on PC and is a spectacular return to form that the series needed after 3.
While I was originally pretty down on the meta-narrative for AC4, in which you are a game designer playing through Edward Kenway’s memories to turn them into a video game, it’s actually a good way to get players to stay inside the Aniumus for as long as they like without breaking them out periodically to remind them that there’s another story going on. Sure, playing through Edward’s memories because of Desmond Mile’s “generous” donation of his genetic lineage to turn them into a video game is pretty goofy, but it serves its purpose for getting you into the Animus and letting you stay there as long as you like. Continue reading Getting Back to the Basics with Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag
Now that the Xbox One is finally out in the wild, I thought I would ask what all of you GamerSushi peeps will be up to this weekend.
Are you playing a shiny new Xbox One, or are you perhaps gaming with a PlayStation 4? Personally I’ll be checking out Super Mario 3D Worlds and The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds this weekend, both of which have been getting sterling reviews.
I also tucked into some Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag last night and I’m already enjoying it much more than AC3. While I can kind of tell that Edward will end up being a character that is ultimately fairly forgettable, the world and the sheer amount of piratey things to do really speaks to me.
So, what are you playing? Go!
There really aren’t enough words to describe the affection I have for Telltale Games at the moment. The guys absolutely knocked me off my feet with their astounding take on Walking Dead, and I hear they’ve actually managed to raise the bar with Wolf Among Us. So count me ecstatic then, given the current rumors surrounding the studio.
Today, IGN reports that Telltale is working on none other than Game of Thrones, the HBO series based on The Song of Ice and Fire books by George R. R. Martin. Of course, this is speculation at the moment, as IGN is citing multiple anonymous sources, and Telltale has offered no official comment.
But we can dream, can’t we? If you ask me, Game of Thrones is one of the perfect franchises for Telltale to lend their talents to. What other universe is full of so many great characters, such emotionally charged decisions, so much danger and betrayal. Imagine saying the wrong thing to the wrong family, and have it come back to bite you in a big way games down the road.
So yeah, I am dying to find out if this is true. What do you guys think of this rumor? Yay or nay?
Source – IGN
When Nintendo released the 3DS in 2011, everyone knew a Pokemon game for that system wouldn’t be too far behind. Game Freak ended up releasing two more Pokemon games for the DS (Black 2 and White 2) in 2012, but those were just holdovers.
The first Pokemon games on the Nintendo 3DS have been released, bringing Pokemon into a whole new dimension. With updated art, new features and a new region, how does Pokemon X and Y fare? Continue reading Review: Pokemon X/Y
Hello, Sushians. I’m writing you guys from the future. Or rather, from the next generation.
Having received my PlayStation 4 last weekend, I’ve been enjoying my fill of it over the last several days. I’ll write something a bit more extensive at some point in the near future, but right off the bat I’ll have to say that I love the machine, and am incredibly impressed with how it does everything promised. It’s quiet, it’s easy, and it just works.
Gushing about the PlayStation 4 aside, however, one of the games I purchased, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag has given me some food for thought. While I’m loving this game much more than I did its predecessor, the let-us-not-speak-of-it Assassin’s Creed III, I can’t help but wonder if game tutorials have gotten too ridiculous. Continue reading Rethinking Tutorials
Between gimmicky Wii shovelware, Red Rings of Death and large price points tainted by giant crab battles, this generation started with something akin to a whimper—and that’s being generous. But as the years went on, we were not only treated to one of the longest generations of console gaming, but also the most fruitful. We saw games take great strides in scope and imagination. With dozens of new IPs that hold great promise, some of the most fantastic sequels ever made and new approaches to storytelling, it’s safe to say that gamers are in a better situation now than they were back in 2005, when the Xbox 360 first debuted.
On the even of a new generation, we thought we’d take a look back at this last generation—and perhaps one of the greatest we’ve ever had. Over the course of several weeks, the GamerSushi staff voted on the best experiences of this generation, getting in heated debates, pitting games against each other in vicious battles and nearly ending several friendships. Below are the results.
Thees are our top 20 games of this generation. Enjoy, dudes. Continue reading The GamerSushi Top 20 Games of the Generation
As you may or may not know, I recently bit the bullet and purchased a Legend of Zelda themed Wii U because after Nintendo’s showing at E3 this past year, things are finally looking up for the system. Super Mario 3D Worlds is shaping up to be a must-own title, what with it bringing four-player co-op to the a 3D Mario title. Nintendo is going pretty crazy adding new things to the game and they released a trailer today detailing 10 new things you can see in Super Mario 3D World.
The game drops on November 22 and you can bet I’ll be picking it up. Any fellow Wii U owners looking to get it? Does this gameplay video entice anyone? Let us know!
Launch titles for a new generation of consoles have a lot to live up to. They have to be discernibly different from the previous generation, look better, carry all sorts of bells and whistles and run smoothly.
Given that this is the first hardware refresh in eight long years, perhaps the expectations leading into this gen are too high. Some people might have been expecting 60 frames per second and 1080p on every game, but recently it came to light that the early games of this console cycle will rarely be hitting that mark.
In fact, Dead Rising 3 falls far below it, as Digital Foundry found out on behalf of Eurogamer. The Xbox One launch title runs at 720p and is supposed to be a consistent 30 fps, but sometimes it dips down to the lower twenties and high teens. The dip is especially noticeable in the large outdoor areas now that Dead Rising 3 is a contiguous open-world and boasts a larger variety of zombies than the previous titles.
Dead Rising 3 does have a crazy amount of effects like per-object motion blur (which the original game had as well, believe it or not) and seems to be a vast improvement over the performance the game displayed at E3, which was apparently choppy and tearing frames all over the place. It seems that Dead Rising 3 definitely puts the Xbox One through its paces.
What do you guys think? Did Dead Rising 3 promise what it can’t deliver? Did we expect too much going into this next generation of consoles? Is 1080p at 60 fps still another cycle off?
Source – Eurogamer
In case you haven’t guessed, it’s next gen week here at GamerSushi, and really everywhere else on the Internet, for that matter. Can you blame us? We’ve got two new consoles launching this month, ushering console gamers into a collective new era of brand new possibilities, new intellectual properties, and new ways to get trolled online.
Of course, one of the least exciting things about a console launch would actually be the system’s launch titles, which are very rarely anything to boast about. This seems to be the case this generation in terms of first party games, although there are a few third party games to get excited about.
So, I wanted to ask you guys which of the following launch titles excited you most? In the past, what are some of your favorite launch titles? Hint: if you say anything other than Mario 64, you might be banned from GamerSushi. OK, kidding. Sorta.
Wow. Even though my excitement about the next generation has been restrained—I mean, come on, we all know that launch lineups are traditionally lame—my enthusiasm has hit a sudden peak in the last day or so, due to the launch of the PlayStation 4 this week, and the Xbox One later this month.
I haven’t been a day-one participant in a console launch since the Nintendo Wii, back in 2006, and the PlayStation 2 before it back in 2000. It’s crazy to think that I haven’t had this experience in 7 years (almost to the day), but here it is, just a sunsets away. And while I was just semi-pumped before, paying off my system last night and seeing all the deals from places like Target and Amazon are getting the fire stoked anew.
Basically, I can’t wait for the next generation. And it’s about to be here.
So my question for you guys today is this: who’s jumping in right away? What are you getting? PS4? Xbox One? What games are you getting? Let’s do a bit of a roll call. Go!
It’s a new episode of (presumably) one of your favorite video game podcasts. We’ve got a full crew this week because Nick is jobless and that’s what you do when you don’t have to work. Podcast and play video games.
In case you haven’t heard enough about it, we talk GTA 5, including Nick’s impressions of the single player game and some online anecdotes. Then we talk Assassin’s Creed IV’s meta-narrative, some fields of battle, the newest Call of Duty and some next-gen stuff. It’s a pretty good show.
So, you know what to do. Listen, rate and don’t do anything we wouldn’t do. See you next time!
0:00 – 1:29 Intro
1:30 – 17:27 GTA 5
17:28 – 27: 20 Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag
27:21 – 36:44 Battlefield 4
36:45 – 46:13 PlayStation 4 and Call of Duty: Ghosts
46:14 – 48:29 The Walking Dead: Season 2
48:30 – 57:41 The Stanley Parable
57:42 – 1:00:47 Outro
Podcast: Play in new window | Download
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In a pretty astonishing move yesterday, Square Enix announced Collective, a new crowdfunding platform that allows indie developers to pitch and create games for some of their old, dormant IPs. With Collective, Square Enix is basically allowing indie developers to rouse some of their sleeping properties, with Anachronox, Fear Effect and Gex going up for grabs. Developers that create games for these will receive a majority of their profits if Square helps publish, and all of the profits if Square does not.
To me, this is an inspiring, fascinating idea, and one that makes total sense. If you’re a developer with a huge backcatalog of IPs, some of which you know for sure you don’t have the resources or interest in resurrecting, why not hand them over to the community to see what comes out of it? It’s incredibly forward thinking of Square Enix, and I’m dying to see if other companies follow suit. In particular, I can’t wait to see what folks do with Anachronox, an often-overlooked cyberpunk noir RPG that had a rich atmosphere, ripe with potential.
So my question for you all on this Friday of Asking Things is this: if you had a chance to resurrect an old, long unvisited property, what would it be? What are some old games that you’d love to see more of, and would you change anything about how they’re presented? Let’s call this an impromptu game jam. Go!
Source – Gamasutra. Image by Alex Chin Yu Chu
Halo 4 came out one year ago today, marking the first time in the series’ history than an FPS title was developed by a studio other than Bungie (who had, at that time, moved on to making Destiny).
343 Industries, the studio that Microsoft created to keep the Halo train rolling, brought forth an admirable effort (we liked the game a lot), but one year after launch, how is Halo 4’s multiplayer user base doing?
According to this NeoGaf thread by user FyreWulff, not very well. Halo 4 had a peak population of just over 400,000 gamers shortly after launch and that number has dropped down to about 50,000. In this thread he lists 343i and Mircosoft’s various missteps with Halo 4, including the early map pack debacle and the weapon tuning and balance changes that occurred six months after launch (Black Ops 2 also sucks up half of Halo 4’s players, but we won’t count that against 343i or Microsoft).
The number tell the tale of Halo 4, it seems. Despite the game impressing critics, it failed to retain the long legs that made Halo 3 and Reach such contenders throughout swaths of Call of Duty releases. What do you guys think of Halo 4’s one year decline? Does this mean bad news for the future of the series?
Source – NeoGaf
Battlefield 4 launched last Tuesday on current generation consoles and the PC and it’s been kind of a bumpy ride. There are things I really love about the game that will still persist after all of the instability has been patched, so let’s cover the bad stuff first.
When Battlefield 4 came out last week, it was virtually unplayable, and that didn’t change until the evening of November 3. To start there were severe rubberbanding on every server and more often than not the servers or the game itself would crash. This is frustrating considering that Battlefield 4 has a very deep unlock/ranking system, even compared to the previous games in the series. When you lose essential unlocks like the defibrillator and have to unlock it five more times before the game actually lets you complete a round and save your stats, it gets pretty annoying.
Fortunately, that has pretty much been ironed out. The netcode is still wonky, what with enemy players killing you while you’re behind cover or even before they round a corner and the rubberbanding still persists when flying air vehicles. In short, DICE and EA are continuing their sterling legacy of making every Battlefield game virtually unplayable for about a week. Even though they’re working hard on it (there have been about six server-side patches in the last week with more to come) having to wait a week to play a game is always a demoralizing experience. Continue reading The Rough Launch of Battlefield 4
There seems to be some gaming event called “the next generation” coming up pretty soon. I don’t know, maybe you guys have heard of it? Apparently these big machines are coming out and people are pretty excited.
However, before that strange phenomenon occurs, we peons are stuck in the current generation (or you’re perpetually next generation gaming on your PC), no doubt clamoring through our backlogs and keeping up with this year’s more modest fall deluge of video games.
Since I’m waiting to play Assassin’s Creed 4 on my soon-to-be-released PlayStation 4 and holding out on Steam sales for Batman: Arkham Origins and The Wolf Among Us, I’m currently playing the heck out of Grand Theft Auto Online and loving it. Even though the actual online design is borked to all hell, the actual races, once you get in them, are among some of the most fun I’ve had gaming online in recent memory. Anthony and I have been partaking in planes, boats, motorbikes and more over the last week, leveling up our respective gangsters and having a general ball.
So what are you guys playing right now? Has anyone else tried Grand Theft Auto Online? Who’s playing Arkham Origins? Details, folks!