TGS 2009 is going on right now in Tokyo, and with it comes lots of new information from all those lovable Japanese developers. Why, we’ve had some new previews from MGS: Peace Walker, FFXIII and FXIV, and then some. But the thing that interested me the most was some new footage of Team Ico’s new game, The Last Guardian.
I just can’t get enough of this hippogriff thing. The gameplay looks intriguing, and the art design is just gorgeous. Who else is dying for this game?
We play lots of games here around GamerSushi. So many, in fact, that there’s not possibly time to write reviews for all of them. While we would love to give some in-depth analysis of every title that graces our screens, we just don’t always get a chance to.
So, rather than neglect this bunch of titles, and make way for the deluge of blockbuster games that are about to appear on the queue, Mitch, Anthony and I decided to give you guys a new feature called Quick Hits.
What are Quick Hits? Quick Hits are fast and to-the-point reviews of several titles we’ve played recently, machine gunner style. Feel free to discuss the games at article’s end, and let us know what you think of them.
Are you prepared for Rocktober, the most heavy metal month of the year? If you are, brace yourselves for the opening six minutes of the Jack Black-starring, Tim Schafer-produced Brütal Legend, a journey through the most raging of fantasy worlds! No doubt you’ve already heard about some of the voice stars in this game-which includes Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy Kilmister and Tim Curry-and you’ve probably heard about the various legal troubles that the game has had, what with Activision being a vicious font of evil and all that. Anyways, check out the video, which feature some awful “music”, surprisingly sober voice acting by Black, and a giant monster that reminds me of Mannoroth from Warcraft III.
So, who’s picking this up? October’s a packed month as far as releases go, but I’m making room for a little Brütal Legend on my calendar.
It’s often gratifying as a gamer to hear that developers do listen to the complaints we have against their games. As small as we can sometimes feel against the pull of design committees, release dates and budget crunches, having a developer say that he’s heard our opinions and is taking them into serious consideration feels like a victory well deserved.
One of the games that has come out in the past couple of years that has seen the most amount of griping by the community at large is Assassin’s Creed. While the game found almost universal acceptance among its players, there were still a few points of contention which people felt needed to be addressed for the inevitable sequel. Things like the repetitive nature of the side missions and the over-all sameness of the actual assassinations were among the biggest criticisms raised against the game.
This is where the conversation with the game’s developer springs up. It’s not as literal as sitting down at a table with the design staff and reading off a list of grievances and what you would have done differently, but it can sometimes have the same effect. The best part is that when developers listen and change things, they’ll sometimes try to get us to differ our views by making us take a harder look at the tropes we’ve come to expect from games.
So what happens when you create a role-playing game in the vein of old school pixelated JRPG’s… only you build it in 3D out of blocks? Why, you get 3D Dot Gamer Heroes, a PS3 exclusive coming out later this year in Japan. I have no idea if/when this game is coming out in the US, but please, for the love of all things holy, I can has?
Tell me that this trailer doesn’t make you nostalgic for games long forgotten. I dare you.
One of the best demos I’ve ever played for a game was the one for Just Cause. While the game itself ended up being a bit repetitive, the demo showcased just enough to really make you want more. To me, the free-falling/parachuting mechanic was some of the most fun “flying” gameplay I had experienced since the wing cap in Mario 64. An open world game that allowed you to leap from car to car, or even jump up into helicopters, Just Cause made you a ridiculous action star, and had some promise, which is why I’m excited about the sequel.
The new edition to the franchise drops in 2010, and so far, it’s shaping up to be a hell of a ride. This vertical gameplay trailer really showcases some of the things you can do, and the thought of hook-shotting my way up skyscrapers and then leaping off of them gets my do want meter going. What do you guys think? Who here played the first game?
I’ve had one hell of a couple of weeks. I’ve been busy, tired, and working like crazy on a number of things. But in the middle of it all, I managed to get in a playthrough of Batman: Arkham Asylum, and boy was it worth it. As a few of you know, especially those that read Mitch’s review, the game is a blast, has an excellent story and some quality stealth gameplay. But something about it bothered me: its length.
While I think the game is maybe one of the best of this year, it is just simply too short for the money that people are expected to pay for it. To me, the game is totally worth $30-$40 simply because of its quality, but $60 is just asking too much for a game that only takes about 8 hours or so to beat. Sure, there is replay value in the challenges and Riddler puzzles, but does anyone else see this as an issue in terms of rising game costs?
To me, this is exactly why people tend to gravitate towards sequels and multiplayer games- the $60 price point is just too much for an impulse buy, or for a game that will only take one weekend to finish. So, what do you guys think about this issue? Go!
If there’s one classic video game mascot that has his fans clamoring for a return to the days of old, its Sonic the Hedgehog. The speedy blue Erinaceidae has suffered more than his share of bad games over the past few years, and every time Sega has tried to change Sonic by adding new game-play mechanics and annoying side-kicks, the more it seems obvious that Sonic does what he does best in a simple side-scroller. Indeed, the most enjoyable parts of Sonic Unleashed were when you were controlling Sonic as he speeds through the day-time stages, whipping past beautiful vistas.
The new Sonic game, which is tentatively titled “Project Needlemouse”, is due for release in 2010, being built from the ground up in an all new HD 2D engine. No systems have been confirmed yet, but a PSN and an XBLA release is safe to assume. Check out the teaser, and get ready to have your hopes dashed once more.
Infinity Ward has released another Modern Warfare 2 multi-player footage video, and I can’t believe how amazing this game looks. The user interface has been completely changed, and the new blood splatter effect that replaces the traditional pulsing red screen when you’re wounded is pretty slick. The guns also look a lot more detailed, and the player models have gotten a complete over-haul. With a good engine in place from CoD 4, it looks like Infinity Ward went a little wild, and we all get to reap the benefits.
Just like the last multiplayer video IW released, this preview is chock-a-block full of little hidden clues as to what you can expect when the game launches November 10th. Keep your eyes peeled after the video “ends” for a nice little surprise.
Here’s something I’m wondering, though. With Modern Warfare being released on three platforms (360, PC and PS3), will it outperform Halo 3:ODST on sales, or will the power of Halo continue to shine through?
Why are super-hero games so hard to get right? You’ve got tailor made settings, abilities and bad guys that you can just lift straight off the funny pages. Seems like an easy sell, right? Well, if you’ve been paying attention to the number of below-average super-hero games this generation, this task seems like a trickier prospect to pull off than at first glance.
The problem with most super-heroes is that they’re just that: super. When you think about it, every comic book character is practically invincible. Superman only has kryptonite to fear, and Spider-Man has his astonishing reflexes to fall back on. Only one comic book crusader has the right amount of limitations to make a challenging video game: Batman.
He’s almost perfect for a developer to take a hold of. No super-strength, no bullet-proof skin. He’s only got his wits, his body, and a handy assortment of gadgets. Many studios have tried to make the lightning strike with Batman, and now it’s Rocksteady’s turn to put the Dark Knight through his paces.
Are you eagerly awaiting Final Fantasy XIII but still aren’t too clear on its new combat system? Here’s a nice little video out of Gamescom that gives a short and sweet overview of the fighting mechanics of the next Final Fantasy. The English localization is still being worked on, but I’d imagine that this game is (finally) close to being done.
I’ve never actually played a Final Fantasy game, so I’m excited to give this a whirl. Who else is going to sink their time into some J-RPG goodness?
It’s time for our monthly “what are you playing” quiz, so you all know what that means.
Right now, I’ve been working my way through a couple of games: Batman: Arkham Asylum and Shadow Complex. The interesting thing about those is not only are they two of the better games I’ve played all year, they are actually very similar in style. I know there was a big discussion about the cliche term “Metroid-vania” (or Castleroid if you’re feeling saucy), and these two titles definitely fit the bill.
They both function in the same way, letting you explore a large complex, gaining access to it more over time as you learn new abilities or find new weaponry. It’s actually very interesting to see the juxtaposition between them, as one is 3D and one 2D, and both equally as enjoyable.
So, have either of you guys gotten try these out yet? And what are you playing as of this weekend?
Christmas has come early for you Modern Warfare fans, as some considerate soul has put up a minute and a half of juicy single-player footage. It’s off-screen, unfortunately, and the music is placeholder, (it’s actually the track Scorponok from the Transformers film), but it’s a good indication of the changes from Call of Duty 4. Take a look:
Is this “Sony does everything right month” or something? After a few years of bumps and bruises, the company that built the Playstation and Playstation 2, two of the greatest consoles of all time, finally seem to have gotten their act together. Not only have they dropped the PS3 to a nice and enticing $299 and have tons of awesome games on the horizon, but they’ve also released these terribly self-aware and hilarious ads about it. Nice to see that they can poke fun at themselves.
One game that’s really slipped under my radar until the past few weeks is Borderlands. A post-apocalyptic title from Gearbox, Borderlands is a 4 player “role-playing shooter” that allows you and 3 other friends to explore dungeons and collect loot together. One of the sweet things about the game is that all of the loots are randomized, making for literally millions upon millions of possible gun combinations in the game. I must say that some of this footage and the prospect of 4 player dungeoneering is really calling to me. What about you guys?
You’ve probably seen me commenting around the site, but here’s an intro anyways. I’m Mitch, Canadian blogger extraordinaire, and I’m going to be contributing posts to GamerSushi a few times a week. I hope you’ll like what I have to contribute, and I’m looking forward to bringing you guys my views on our crazy hobby.
If you’re like me, you’ve been playing Battlefield 1943 on either the PlayStation 3 or the X-Box 360 and enjoying the hell out of it. If you’re waiting for the PC version to drop in September, you might be out of luck. Gordon Van Dyke has let it be known that in order to make 1943 a true PC product, DICE is going to have to delay the release into 2010. To make up for the prolonged wait, though, DICE is adding all the neat features that PC gamers take for granted, such as higher player count in matches, Direct X 9 and 10, and joystick support.
I can’t really fault DICE for wanting to give due attention to the PC, but this puts the release dangerously close to Bad Company 2, which might over-shadow its little brother. What do you guys think? Is it worth the wait, or will 1943 get left behind in the early 2010 rush?
Final Fantasy XIII, Square Enix’s long-awaited entry into the Final Fantasy series that has been approximately two decades in the making (not really) will finally be coming to both the PS3 and XBox 360 next year. Not only is it cool to know that this game is right around the corner, but it’s even cooler to know that the game is going to take between 40-50 hours to complete, according to recent reports.
However, there’s been some cause of debate about the game between those lovely fanboys. For years, we’ve heard that one of the PS3′s big advantages over the XBox 360 is the storage capacity of Blu-ray. However, it hasn’t really been an issue for many games in this generation until now. It seems that Final Fantasy XIII is going to take “about” three discs for the XBox 360 version as opposed to the PS3 version.
So, what do you guys think about switching discs for the XBox 360 version? Will it deter you from a purchase of the game, or is it really not that big of a deal and do you view it as a huge limitation? Personally, I’ll be getting FFXIII for the PS3, but I think it’s an interesting debate nonetheless.
In case you hadn’t heard, the new Castlevania: Lords of Shadow game is being made by Kojima Productions. I think it’s definitely good to let them tackle something that is not Metal Gear for a change, and so far the results are looking pretty cool. The Lords of Shadow trailer definitely has some cool style to it, and count me pumped for Patrick Stewart’s voice, which instantly makes everything exponentially more awesome. What do you guys think?
Well, after months of speculation, it’s happened. Sony dropped the PS3′s price to $299.99 and announced a 120 GB PS3 Slim. Does this change anything for any of you guys? Do you think this will allow Sony to surge past the 360? Or are they destined for 3rd place for this cycle?
I’ve been playing through some of Prototype this week, and as with most sandbox games, it seems to do a few things really well, but a bunch of other ones in a largely mediocre way. Traversing the city is perhaps the best part of the game. Skyscraper running is so addicting I almost can’t believe it, so moving back and forth between objectives is actually more fun than even doing them.
But it falls short in other ways. I’m not even very far into the game, and the story is a mess. Likewise, all the objectives are already repetitive, and I’m only a few hours in. On top of that, the draw distances and the graphics are pretty laughable, and the city doesn’t feel like a living, breathing world.
It makes me wonder why sandbox games seem to be so hit-or-miss in all of these other areas. To me, to have a good sandbox game, you need a fun way to travel the world, unique diversions, non-repetitive missions and a fully functioning world to make as your playground. In the last couple of years, I feel like Saint’s Row 2 is the closest I’ve gotten to playing something that meets all of those.
What about you guys? What’s your favorite sandbox game, and what do you think is the most important aspect of the genre? Go!