Hot off the presses at CES in Las Vegas, it sounds like Valve has finally dropped some details about their upcoming foray into home entertainment—the Steam Machine. While the idea of a Valve system that acts as a vehicle for all of your impulse buying—er, I mean, PC gaming—right from your couch might be appealing, the company has had quite a few questions to answer about price, specs and the like.
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.
One of the things I love about the Sushians here is that I think we cover a decent spread of ages and lifestyles. Some of us have kids, some of us are still in school, some of us are kids at heart and others of us eat hearts to strengthen their bushy beards (not that I’m naming names).
In recent weeks, I’ve had to do some thinking about the state of things in my life, what it means for my schedule and how that affects the time I can devote to gaming. Sadly, I’ve concluded that multiplayer games are all but out—however, handhelds are on their way back in! Most of that is because I’m discovering that I just don’t have the disposable time that I used to (most of my free time goes to family and writing), so it’s time to stop kidding myself.
With that in mind, I wanted to ask you guys about your gaming time sheets, and how many hours you guys are able to put toward our illustrious hobby week in and week out. Feel free to go into more detail in the comments. Go!
The eve of a new generation is a strange time for gamers. We’re so used to having our calendars planned out at least a year in advance, knowing all of the big blockbuster releases that we intend to snatch up day one. But when a new generation dawns, all bets are off, and release dates become a nebulous, free-form sort of thing, hidden in shadow.
Which kind of sucks.
At the moment, this seems to be exactly the case for 2014, with tons of titles announced, but no clear idea on when we’ll really be able to play them, beyond vague “quarter” references meant primarily for stockholders. But none of that really means anything to gamers, especially when it comes to us saving money and figuring out what we’d like to buy. Even though I can’t wait for my PlayStation 4, I’m admittedly a bit bummed that I have no real idea when I’ll be playing some truly spectacular next generation games once we move over to 2014.
With all that in mind, I put together a list of the most anticipated games that don’t have true release dates yet, and wanted to see which ones you guys were most excited about. Go!
Prequels are all the rage these days. A word that used to hold little meaning before Star Wars made it commonplace in the 90s, prequels now span every medium of entertainment, from movies to video games and TV. For every Breaking Bad, there’s a Better Call Saul, for every Deus Ex, there’s a Human Revolution, and so on.
With Batman: Arkham Origins dropping next month, one of the more popular video game franchises in recent years is getting its own prequel treatment, putting us in the shoes of a younger, less experienced Dark Knight. While I’ve no reason to be suspicious of the game at all, I admittedly find it hard to get excited about not taking a step forward in the mythology, seeing as how I love where the story seemed to be heading with Arkham City. Likewise, Metal Gear Solid V: Phantom Pain, while looking mighty impressive, sort of kills my desire to see its story unfold since we’ve already seen how the whole thing ends — and let’s not even mention that there’s a new voice for the iconic Snake.
So today’s Pixel Count focuses on prequels. Do you love them or hate them? Are you indifferent? Go!
Welp, it’s Grand Theft Auto V week here on the Internet, so you can guess what we’re talking about.
Despite our many, many grievances about Grand Theft Auto IV, Grand Theft Auto V has managed to charm me over the last few weeks. I have to give credit to Rockstar for the way that they’ve managed the flow of information about this game, from the screenshots to the trailers to the details about GTA Online. It’s created a bit of a frenzy for a game I never wanted to play, to the point where all this week I’ve been salivating over reviews.
Which leads me to today’s Pixel Count. We’ve all got our methods about how we choose our games, or how we rate them before we’ve played them. I wanted to know how you guys get a sense of a game when it releases. Vote and tell us more in the comments!
E3 has come and the Big 3 have shown us what they have in store for us over the coming months. There has been so much news, updates, retractions, clarifications and denials that it is kind of hard to keep track of everything. Still, this has been an eventful E3, one where the details of two new consoles were revealed, where fanboys waged war and where Nintendo did whatever it is they do. Microsoft brought the games, Sony brought the Internet to its feet and Nintendo brought its beloved franchises.
So now that we have a clearer picture of what Microsoft and Sony are going to do with their next gen systems, it only makes sense to take a poll of our loyal readers and find out where your current desires lie. A lot can change between now and release but it seems reasonable to assume that some of you have made up your minds. So tell us in the poll below which system you plan on doing your gaming in the near future. Please leave the reasons for your vote in the comments!
Video game timelines are funny things. On one end of the spectrum, you’ve got the annual release titles — the familiars of our hobby, such as Call of Duty, Madden, Assassin’s Creed, Mario and the like — and on the other side of the spectrum you have the folks that release games when they’re good and ready — the Valves and Square Enixes of the world. Today’s post concerns the first group.
With the recent quality dip of franchises such as Assassin’s Creed, the underwhelming “next gen” (but still the same old) gameplay of Call of Duty: Ghosts and the staleness of other titles like Mario or Madden, it seems like there are quite a few annual releases in need of a good old fashioned sabbatical. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t dislike these franchises. Far from it. I just think that perhaps an extended break might give developers a chance to come back to the table with fresh eyes and maybe a few gameplay or art tweaks that might reinvigorate things again.
Take Madden, for instance. I’m a dude that loves watching just about any random NFL game I can find on TV, but you almost couldn’t pay me to play a Madden game. Here’s the game of football — a rough-hitting, edge-of-your-seat, strategy-on-the-fly sport played by athletic gods — and EA manages to make a game that feels boring. Contrast that with something as historic as Mario or Zelda, two imaginative franchises that don’t quite excite the way they used to (unless they go retro or reboot one of the older, better games in some way), and it starts to feel like maybe it’s time for these guys to rest just a little while.
So without further ado, here’s today’s Pixel Count. Get your votes on and tell us what you think in the comments! It doesn’t even have to be a yearly release — just a franchise that you think might benefit with some rethinking.
We gripe quite a bit about the homogenization of games on GamerSushi. One of the most disappointing things about this past generation has been the way publishers and developers have shifted to providing game experiences that feel all too similar. We’ve been through the laundry list of complaints before: RPG mechanics married with Call of Duty style shooting, games that lead you down cut-scene filled tunnels, etc.
However, in the last year or two, we’ve finally had a bit of a break from the attack of the video game clones. With creative titles like XCOM, Monaco, Papers Please, Journey, Walking Dead, Hotline Miami and more, it seems like we’re slipping out of that mid-generation funk of tired, boring military games. And as time goes on, I feel like I keep seeing more reasons to be excited about upcoming games, as people are finally turning the corner. Don’t get me wrong, the shooter will always be popular — but we’re finally seeing more of the variety that the generation started with.
So, with that in mind, let’s have ourselves another edition of Pixel Count. This week, we’re talking about the game types we miss most, and that we hope to see more of in the near future. Start casting your votes and tell us why in the comments. Go!
We’ve talked at length about the mystical, nebulous “next generation” here quite a bit recently, and it only makes sense — new machines are dropping on us left and right, with the next XBox reveal to take place just one week from today. And while we’ve already spoken about what we think is most important in the next generation, I thought we’d revisit that topic in a more practical approach.
While I’ve been saying that I won’t partake in the next generation for some time, there are admittedly a few sticking points that could make me change my mind. I love the IPs that Microsoft has at its disposal. But I love the gamer-centric approach that Sony is taking with the PlayStation 4. As always, the right games at the right time can do wonders, but right now I still want to see what these machines cost, and what their long-term plans are. And then of course there’s the Wii U… which… yeah.
So let’s vote and talk about the next generation consoles in the comments. Go!
The big news of the week so far happens to be the semi-bombshell that EA and Disney signed an exclusive deal for Star Wars games yesterday, meaning that EA’s various developing arms will have sole access to the enormous Star Wars universe. While there is some skepticism rightly reserved for allowing the floundering EA to tackle a property that so many love and hold dear, especially after some huge missteps, I think it’s OK to have a little hope here.
When you break it down, what other publishing Goliath in the industry has the number of varied, talented developers in their portfolio that EA does? I can see an argument for Activision, but that’s the only one that even comes close to rivaling the kind of talent of DICE, Bioware, Maxis, Popcap, Criterion and Visceral. So we have reason to feel two ways about this. But for now, let’s dream a little.
So here’s this week’s Pixel Count. Hit up the poll and tell us your thoughts in the comments!
With Blood Dragon coming out soon for FarCry 3, I’ve been thinking quite a bit lately about DLC. It’s hard to imagine several things about the scenario that resulted in one of the year’s top sellers creating an 80s-themed sci-fi story: 1) that someone would have this idea and feel strongly enough about it to 2) pitch it to suits who would then 3) agree to make the damn thing.
Taking beloved mechanics and applying them to a wild shift in setting is fascinating, and it made me start thinking about the types of DLC we have available to us. From simple add-ons like weapons and maps to full-blown sequel-bridging epilogues, DLC has really come a long way in the last few years. While there are some bad apples, it seems that developers for the most part are starting to be more creative about what they offer, and when.
So that being said, let me hit you up with a poll. Vote and tell us about your favorite DLCs in the comments!
After the last few weeks, it’s been hard for me not to be a bit of a gaming grump when it comes to trends in the video game industry. Sometimes it’s easy to look at all the ways the hobby’s changing, from DRM to microtransactions to the idea of games as a service instead of games as a product… and just feel a bit let down.
But then some great games come out like Bioshock: Infinite and Tomb Raider, and you start to feel a bit more hopeful. Like maybe some teams are out there still thinking about us and trying to make games we’ll enjoy. So in that vein, I thought today’s Pixel Count would focus on the positive: what gaming trends do you love about the industry right now! Tell us why in the comments!
The reveal of Bungie’s newest property, Destiny, has had me thinking this week about the nature of hype in the video game realm. With everything from years-out announcements to games that get stuck in an endless development cycle, games that get dropped on us just a few months before release and more, we’ve seen the whole gamut of hype. Sometimes it is a bit much for our poor hearts, methinks.
But while I’m excited about the little snippets that Bungie showed off, I can’t help but feel like maybe the announcement had been just a tad overhyped in the week prior. Bungie explained a little of what Destiny is, but there’s still so much we don’t know, and for a game that seems built around its high concept that we may or may not have seen before, it seems like maybe that information is necessary. In the end, it comes down to strategy, and how each developer feels that they can ultimately sell more copies.
All that to ask you guys today’s poll question. How do you prefer your video game hype? Go!
Every generation represents a new set of hurdles for the medium (or art, if you’re feeling fancy) of video gaming. In the current generation — and yes, I do include PC games in this — I think the most obvious hurdles we’ve cleared have to do with graphics, the ease of connectivity and huge, immersive universes. Within the last few years, it’s easier to play with friends than ever before, or even talk to them across games. I can share games with them on Steam or track their progress through PSN or XBL. Games like Skyrim, Borderlands 2 and Arkham City have given us amazing, huge worlds that we can interact with, and feel like we’re a part of. The Uncharted series and Red Dead Redemption have given us high-caliber storytelling and some memorable vocal performances.
But do I think all of these things are perfect? Not by any stretch. The medium still has plenty of growing up to do in terms of what it can achieve, in any number of arenas. Today’s Pixel Count poll is a big one, representing what I think are the biggest hurdles that gaming still has in front of it.
So, if we’re entering the next generation soon, which of these do you think is the most important issue, from a player’s perspective? Vote and tell us what you think in the comments!
It’s a sad fact that when you have the highs of a year, there will unfortunately be lows. With so many big name titles getting their next iteration last year (and in some cases, wrapping up a planned trilogy) it was inevitable that gamers at large would be let down by some of them. Not saying that these games were bad across the board, but when you wait fifteen plus years for something, well, expectations tend to be a little inflated.
So, here’s a list of games I’ve put together that generated the most stink during 2012. This isn’t me saying that I think these games are awful, but rather these are the games that critics and players won’t stop bashing. Let’s put it to rest once and for all. What was the biggest disappointment in gaming for 2012?
Now that we’ve talked about Best Multiplayer/Co-op let’s move on to the next segment of GamerSushi Votes. On the docket today is Best Single-Player, and it’s been a heck of a year for solitary experiences. A couple years back it looked like the single-player experience was on the way out and a good multiplayer portion was the ticket to success, but near the end of this generation we’ve swung back around to games having a really fleshed-out single-player campaign and tacked on multiplayer modes.
It was hard to narrow down the selection of single-player games to vote on, but I think I got a good sample. As usual, if there’s a game you think I missed, feel free to tell us in the comments. Now, vote!
Hello, gaming friends, and welcome back to GamerSushi Votes, our now annual tradition of asking you, the community, what you felt were the stand-out titles of the year.
For the first day of voting, I thought we’d tuck into the best multiplayer of the year, which I’ve expanded to include co-op because I’ve spent more time playing with people rather than against them this year. Mass Effect 3 lead this charge, having a surprisingly strong and deep multiplayer mode that has been repeatidly expanded on and I’m still playing to this day. Add that to plethora of other games that encourage working with your friends, and you have a very strong year for co-op.
So, choose a selection from the list below, or let us know what your favorite multiplayer/co-op of 2012 was in the comments!
Sup fools and lady fools. It is I, your friendly Canadian taking over the podcast posting duties for our esteemed Editor who is indisposed with lots of “real life stuff”. It’s kind of sad how busy Eddy is; he’s only played four hours of Mass Effect 3.
Anyways, on this, the 43 episode of the GamerSushi Show, the crew (minus Eddy) chats about a variety of topics, including the then-new Assassin’s Creed 3 reveal. We went into that discussion blind but we managed to nail a lot of the game’s features and mechanics just through some fancy guesswork (like the Frontier being a location for the game and the ability to climb trees). We’re kind of awesome like that.
We also talk about Twisted Metal, Anthony getting an iPhone, mech games and a whole bunch of other stuff. We even find time to fit in a game of Percentages between all of our nerdy ramblings.
Of all the things to mod into Skyrim, I’m not sure that Randy Savage was at the top of the list, but here we are in 2012 and someone has found a way to put the Macho Man into the game. The video detailing the mod is three minutes of pure terror and hilarity.
Originally I thought the mod would just replace the voices of the dragons with soundbites of Randy Savage, but when I saw what had become of their appearance, well, that’s a whole other story. I just couldn’t stop laughing when the guards heard the cry of at the beginning of the video and started acting scared. Good stuff! Here’s the link if you want to try out the Skyrim Macho Man mod for yourself.