We’re keeping the podcast rolling this week with a new episode, in which Eddy experiences a halucinatory fever dream and leads us all on a magical adventure in which we learn a bit more about ourselves. Nah not really, we mostly just talk video games and troll each other, like we do.
We gab a bit about the new iPhones, Kickstarter, Saint’s Row 4, now that I’ve gotten a chance to dig in to it, Grand Theft Auto 5 and how Rockstar is trying to kill Anthony, and a few more things besides. It’s an excellent cast as always, so listen, rate and be awesome. See you soon!
0:00 – 1:54 Intro
1:55 – 8:50 iPhone 5S and 5C
8:51 – 20:56 Kickstarter
20:57 – 30:09 Saint’s Row 4
30:10 – 38:25 GTA 5
38:26 – 46:53 Steam Family Sharing
46:54 – 57:37 Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons and Shorter Games
57:38 – 59:49 Outro
You know, the one that we’re all going to disappear into while we’re busy playing games. The first harbinger of doom comes in the form of one Grand Theft Auto V, which somehow is only a few days away. I’m not really sure how that happened, but I’m not complaining about it. After that, we’ll have games like Watch Dogs, Batman: Arkham Origins, AC IV, Battlefield 4 and then some.
But before all that, what are you guys playing right now? To prepare myself for battle at the moment, I’ve been diving into Saint’s Row IV, trying to finish it in a mad dash just in time for GTA V. I’m also trying to wrap up Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, and hope to knock out Call of Juarez: Gunslinger sometime in the near future as well… but my eyes are often bigger than my stomach when it comes to gaming.
So what about you guys? What are you playing while you await the inevitable fall madness? Go!
Aaaand…we’re back. After our traditional Summer break we return to the mics to bring you the latest installment of the GamerSushi Show where we talked about how much we missed eachother. Not really, it’s mostly dick jokes, video games and the Benedict Cumberbatch name-generator, which is where I got the title for this episode.
When we recorded the cast last Wednesday, I had just come back from PAX, so I give an in-depth breakdown of what I saw and played. Well, more accurately I have to be gentle lead through the discussion, but we all know I’m bad at just talking about stuff.
Seeing as how we’re back, you should definitely listen to the cast, rate the cast, and enjoy the cast. We’re back on the regular schedule, more or less, so we’ll see you next week!
0:00 – 11:44 Intro
11:45 – 20:39 Dark Souls
20:40 – 42:59 PAX Prime
43:00 – 54:18 Microsoft and the Xbox One
54:19 – 1:13:24 Nintendo’s Missteps
1:13:25 – 1:30:06 Saint’s Row IV
1:30:07 – 1:31:46 Outro
1:31:47 SEKRIT PODCAST STUFF
Open-world games are hugely popular. Ever since Grand Theft Auto III, it seems most franchises try to take a stab at it at least once, with mixed results. The masters of the genre are the ones that give you so many things to do that you become paralyzed by the freedom of choice. Although sometimes this can be a good thing. If everything is fun, then maybe you just do whatever is nearest to you, until eventually you have done it all.
The point is, there are many ways to approach open-world games. Grand Theft Auto V is drawing close and I will be anxious to see if they are able to give us enough tasks to keep us busy, as they failed to do in GTA IV. I am currently playing Fallout: New Vegas in the meantime and I am taking a slightly different approach to the game than I have in the past. When I play Skyrim, Oblivion or Fallout 3, I tend to avoid the main quest as much as possible, doing all the side tasks that I can until I am suddenly weary of the game and then I race through the main story as fast as possible before the game drives me insane. Continue reading An Open-World Game Draws Near! Command?
This last week saw the release of Saint’s Row IV, the sequel to the irreverent, goofy, completely ridiculous sandbox crime series that lets you blow up just about anything in just about anyway possible. As if the games weren’t already insane enough, this version of the series has added in superpowers with which to visit havoc upon the citizens of Steelport, in addition to its new alien overlords.
While the first few missions of SR4 took me a bit of getting used to (the game makes you waddle through quite a bit of set-up in order to get to the first open world gameplay), once it unleashes you in the digital, Matrix-style Steelport, where you’re constantly testing the world’s parameters— things kick up quite a few notches. I’m already in love with the power glitches, a gameplay element quite similar to Crackdown’s agility orbs, which beckon you to jump to new heights to get stronger and faster. We’ll see how the rest of the game unfolds.
So what about the rest of you? Who else picked up Saint’s Row IV this last week? What are your thoughts on the game so far? What’s your character like? And did you choose the Nolan North voice? Sound off, Sushians!
My hatred of Grand Theft Auto IV has not been exaggerated or underreported in the slightest over the last few years. While Liberty City was gorgeous to look at through Niko’s eyes, I found it to be a dull, tedious place that I hardly cared about, or cared to be a part of.
But dang, does Grand Theft Auto V look different. In addition to a campaign that looks to mix up the formula with three protagonists, Rockstar’s newest iteration of the popular series is taking the multiplayer in a different direction than ever before by way of Grand Theft Auto Online, a persistent world where you and up to 15 others can heist, race, deathmatch, build and generally unleash havoc together. I’ll let the video do the rest of the gushing.
Grand Theft Auto Online releases on October 1, and is free with every retail version of GTA V. What do you guys think? Am I jumping too far into the hype train? Have I been burned too many times to take another chance?
I think that I’ve been pretty vocal in my condemnation of Assassin’s Creed 3 over the past year. I thought it was barren, janky, scatterbrained and didn’t fit the mold of what I’ve come to expect from an Assassin’s Creed game. In short, it left me wary of future installments in the franchise.
Since Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag was announced a few months ago, I’ve been rather lukewarm about it. Sure, it capitalizes on the best part of AC3, the naval battles, but being a successor to that game would it travel the same dark road? This new gameplay video narrated by game director Ashraf Ismail shows how closely Assassin’s Creed IV is hewing to the older games and what’s changed for the next adventure.
I’ve got to admit, Black Flag is looking pretty solid. The naval combat has had a tactical layer added on to it with the spyglass, and the return of free-form assassination contracts rubs me in all the right ways. So what do you guys think? Does Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag look like it has some promise, or are appearances deceiving?
The above Ode to Garry’s Mod is a hilarious, silly and kind of moving tribute to one of the goofiest games in existence. Just watching it made me think of all the hours I’ve spent in the Source engine’s multiple iterations, from Garry’s Mod to Left4Dead and Counter-Strike. Without Garry’s Mod, we dudes at Smooth Few Films would have been unable to produce some of The Leet World’s stupider effects. It’s hard not to be grateful for that engine, and all the time I’ve spent exploring it for glitches, physics and lighting experiments.
So it got me thinking: what gaming experiences are you guys thankful for? From multiplayer to singleplayer, what experiences do you feel went beyond a hobby to something that actually played a big part in your life? Beyond Garry’s Mod, I’d have to say Mass Effect inspired my imagination more than almost any game in the last few years, and Halo gifted me with a way to stay in touch with all of my long distance friends.
What about you guys? What gaming experiences are you thankful for?
Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon seems like one of those games that never should have happened. After the main game went out the door, a small team at Ubisoft was given the basic framework of Far Cry 3 and a very short time frame to turn in an expansion pack.
What we got out of that is a mishmash of every single 80s movie staring Michael Biehn and featuring giant lizards that shoot lasers out of their eyes. Roll your D20s, nerds, it’s time to review Blood Dragon. Continue reading Review: Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon
Another month, another update to the beloved, ever-changing GamerSushi Power Rankings. If you’ll remember, March had us loving games like Ni No Kuni, FarCry3 and Dead Space 3 above all others. Well, things have changed quite a bit in April. You see, some of the year’s best games and biggest surprises have all come out one after the other, which leaves us quite a few new contenders. And some of those contenders will probably linger for a while to come.
Between Sim City, and the new announcement of Assassin’s Creed 4, I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the way gamers set and manage their own expectations when it comes to new games.
The disappointment for Sim City comes from knowing that a ridiculously good game might be lying beneath the surface of some extremely frustrating mechanical issues. From the servers not working (I was put into a 20 minute queue last night in the middle of a session) to the ancient-feeling social interactions, and some of the really odd rules of gameplay (too-small cities and some unhelpfully helpful Sim guides), I’m disappointed because Sim City might be a masterpiece completely stepping on its own feet.
With Assassin’s Creed 3, I felt a little lured into a game that was ultimately a total bomb. From carefully selected vertical slices of gameplay for hands-on previews to unbelievably cleverly edited trailers, Assassin’s Creed 3 looked set to put the series back to what it was with Brotherhood, while simultaneously striking out in a bold, new direction. What we got instead was a total mess, and it made me evaluate the way I take in my gaming news, which I’m already pretty strict about to begin with. Needless to say, I won’t be excited about AC4 anytime soon.
So I figured for today’s poll I’d ask you guys where you derive most of your expectations for upcoming games. Hit up the poll, and then the comments!
So you guys might have heard about this game called Sim City that came out this week. Apparently lots of people are playing it, and everything that EA has done with the launch has been so brilliant that people are throwing parades for it, both in their game’s city streets and in real life. It’s being heralded as the way to do a launch right, and a bastion of hope for how to do an “always online” DRM.
OK, none of that is true. At all. In fact, lots of people can’t even play the game yet.
In what might have been a worse launch disaster than Diablo III, Sim City points to a somewhat grim future for “always online” single player games on the PC. The game’s servers have been so overloaded that people are having trouble playing, saving cities, seeing their friends and more. In fact, EA is having to turn off features that supposedly made “always online” necessary in the first place, just to help people connect. Continue reading GamerSushi Asks: Sim City’s Launch Woes?
Welcome to the monthly Power Rankings, gents. If you’ll recall, we’ve changed the Power Ranking format in 2013 to reflect our current “What’s Hot” list, regardless of the year the game was released. These are the games we keep coming back to collectively, salivating as we play… OK, that last part might have been an exaggeration, although I hear Mitch does get very excited about necromorphs.
Speaking of necromorphs, 2013 is already rolling with a handful of new games that have made their appearance on this month’s Power Rankings, including Dead Space 3 and Crysis 3. Next month’s list will be even wackier in terms of shake-ups, if Anthony’s recent Pixel Count is any indication. We’ve also been dipping our toes into some older ponds, including the zany urban warfare depicted in Saint’s Row 3, as well as the magepunky slums of Midgar in Final Fantasy 7.
As many of you may know, I am the proud owner of a new gaming PC, so naturally I’ve been digging through my backlog of Steam games to put the new machine through its paces. Thanks to various sales, I have a pretty sizable collection of games despite not having a rig worthy of running them until now. One of the games I’ve been playing the most is Saints Row: The Third, which I bought as part of the THQ Humble Bundle. The funny thing, though, is that I didn’t buy the bundle thinking I’d end up playing much Saints Row; it was more that I’m a sucker for a sale price and thought some of the other games in the bundle might be worth checking out.
Part of the fun of my new machine is launching games and seeing how they run with all settings maxed out, so I spent most of one Saturday launching one game after another and playing with the settings. Much to my surprise, Saints Row is actually a gorgeous game, especially on the highest settings. Once that sank in, I realized that I was also having a hell of a lot of fun playing the opening set piece during a bank robbery gone wrong. Pretty soon after that, the game had its hooks in me, and I ended up playing it for a good six hour session the following weekend.
Avast, landlubber! After a pre-order poster for Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag leaked earlier this week, Ubisoft went ahead and confirmed that the game and its pirate setting are real and there will be an official reveal on Monday, March 4. The game has been announced for the PS3, Xbox 360, PC and WiiU, but you know this is coming to the PS4 and the Xbox successor as well.
There are no firm details about the game other than that it will be a pirate-themed game based on the open sea and will be set in a new time period as well as feature a different protagonist. Based on the box-art, which I used for the image, the time period won’t be radically different from the Revolutionary America setting from Assassin’s Creed 3.
The naval battles were my favorite part of the previous game, so I’m glad Ubisoft is running with the one new addition to the series that worked well. I’ve made my dislike of AC3 well known, but I can’t help but be a little excited for Black Flag. A pirate that follows the creed would make for an excellent protagonist indeed, and hopefully a departure from the more or less morally-upright main characters of games past.
What do you guys think about this announcement? Are you excited for Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag? Would you rather this game sank to Davy Jones’ Locker? Will the game use the term “poop deck” with a straight face?
Hola, Sushians. For Did You See This Wednesday, I bring great gaming gifts, like a spice trader who’s wandered across the internet’s vast desert on camelback.
OK actually, I just found some cool stuff I thought you guys might like to see. We’ve got two videos here. The first is an original piece by Tim Hijikema, who, if you’ll remember, made the excellent Video Game Planets piece almost a year ago.
In his new video, Video Game Locations, Tim re-creates classic video game locales, from Hyrule to Vice City. Set to excellent music, this thing is a crazy nostalgia tour. Can you name them all?
Having just wrapped up Crysis 3, I’ve been thinking about the way shooters are leaning these days in terms of how their campaigns are structured. Very few games walk the line the that Crysis 3 does by having its levels be a blend of openness and linearity; most of the time, games are just corridor shooters like Call of Duty or open-world type affairs like Far Cry 3.
While it does have a lot to do with the mechanics (Call of Duty would never work as a semi-open shooter in its current form), it also boils down to personal taste. Some people can’t stand linear games, while other get turned off by games that are too broad. What about you guys? What kind of shooter floats your boat?
After a couple of years of silence, Bungie has spilled the beans on their ambitious, imaginative project, Destiny. In one of their famous ViDocs, the house that built Halo unveiled its new shared-world shooter. While it’s hard to know what it is exactly at this point, the implication seems to be a persistent online sandbox world, where the players have an affect on the world and the story. It sounds like an MMO, but also with a few elements such as DayZ.
Bungie plans to unfold this universe over the course of 10 years. And what a universe to play in. I could go on and on about the art style, which reminds me of both Halo and Mass Effect, but with a touch of ruin seen from something like Enslaved. While most of what we see in the video is concept art, we do get a couple of bits of gameplay towards the end. You should really just watch it for yourself.
What do you guys think of Destiny, upon its first reveal? I have to admit, it’s a bit bittersweet to see the game’s scope and style, knowing that I had a chance to be at Bungie for all of this. I’m curious to see what else they have in store for us, and what other things they’ll release about the game in the coming months.
As I talked about last week, I’ve been doing a remarkable job when it comes to my gaming backlog. The most recent casualty on my seemingly ever-growing list (seriously: I just added Ni No Kuni to it this weekend) is Sleeping Dogs, Square Enix’s Hong Kong crime drama.
I’m generally down on open-world GTA style games, but Sleeping Dogs was a welcome treat, providing fun hand-to-hand combat, some nice diversions, exhilarating driving and a well-told story to boot. But one of the things I loved most about Sleeping Dogs? It knew when to call the game quits. Continue reading Sleeping Dogs: When to Let a Game Lie
For today’s GamerSushi Asks Friday, we’re going to take a look at the long, hard farewell. I feel like there’s a “that’s what she said” in there somewhere.
After finishing Far Cry 3 recently, something happened to me that I’ve really only experienced a few times in gaming. After the main game was completed, the pirates were vanquished from the island, outposts liberated, animals hunted and huge portions of secret items located, I realized there was nothing left for me to do in the game. Because of said pirate vanquishment, I couldn’t even run around and kill a few bad guys. I was done with the game, almost completely.
And when it came time to sign off, I found myself coming up with excuses to hop around the world a little longer. I was kind of sad to say goodbye. This has happened before, and will hopefully happen again. Continue reading GamerSushi Asks: Saying Goodbye?