: Ben's Week In Review: March 16

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Ben's Week In Review: March 16

So, how many times have you died in Dark Souls II so far? ;)

Still don't understand Sony's silent stance on Guardian

I've never understood it really. Believe me, I'm quite familiar with Sony's long-standing policy: "We don't announce something until there's something to announce." It's akin to "we don't comment on rumor and speculation."

However, at some point, you have to figure that gamers deserve a bit more than the standard "yes, we're still working on it" explanation. That's not even an explanation, really, it's just a statement, and we've heard it way too many times over the years. And when you say The Last Guardian is "still in the mix," that's nothing new, either. Why not give us just a little something in the way of an update? For instance, why not just confirm that the game is now in the works for the PS4? I mean, obviously it is. Probably has been for a while now.

Just minor information like that can go a long way towards appeasing the fans. We don't need a solidified release date and a five-minute gameplay trailer. We don't even need an estimated launch window and a one-minute teaser. We just want some evidence that in fact, this project is still in development and yes, it will show up sooner than later. At this rate, I wouldn't be surprised if - for one reason or another - Guardian has been shelved. I'm really hoping that's not the reason for this elongated silence...

Not sure I like what I'm hearing about the Mirror's Edge sequel

Everyone's talking about those leaked details and while I'm still on the fence, I'm leaning towards annoyance. So, every single video game on earth that is made from here until the end of time has to be an open-world sandbox format? Are we just going to completely abandon even the slightest semblance of a linear adventure and along with it, a cohesive storyline? You know, not a "plot" that hides behind the "oh, players can use their imaginations" baloney? I like that Faith won't have a gun (so no shooter) and I'm interested in the "faster, more fluid" parkour and general exploration.

However, all this talk about a seamless single-player/multiplayer experience (ala Dark Souls) and an open-world setup (ala Grand Theft Auto) is unnerving. Of course, this is all assuming those details are accurate. I have a feeling they might be, though; the industry is definitely heading in this direction. Ten years from now, I have a bad feeling that we won't even need genres anymore because every last game in existence will be like GTA, only bigger and deeper. Not looking forward to that at all.

Personal gaming update

I won't be finishing Dark Souls II. Not because I don't like it, but just because I don't have the time. It's great (still don't understand how people are missing the significant frame rate issues in the PS3 version) but inFamous: Second Son is right around the corner, and that takes priority. Well, that and the Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster, which I just can't wait to have in my collection! By the way, if you haven't tried South Park: The Stick of Truth just yet, and you enjoy the show, you gotta pick it up. It's too coarse and unnecessarily disgusting for me but for the avid followers, it's awesome. :)

Oh, and congrats to Naughty Dog for The Last Of Us passing 6 million units! Not sure if that's sold-in or sold-through but either way, it's well-deserved!

3/15/2014 Ben Dutka

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Comments (39 posts)

WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, March 15, 2014 @ 10:44:53 PM
Reply

One of Sony's fatal flaws in being out of touch with fans, that no comment policy has gone too far and they haven't noticed it. I agree with Ben that you don't need a huge update but a few details on the development process now and then would be enough for fans. It isn't even that they "owe" us that much, it's just smart to do it because people will turn against you eventually. Waiting until there's something huge to announce is stupid.

Mirror's Edge was okay but I've got zero interest in a another one right now. I'm afraid open world games will be the FPS games of this new generation. Thank the lord for The Order: 1886. But I don't think it will be forever, eventually closed narrative games will be rediscovered as a place to tell a great story.

I've actually been kinda disappointed in Tales of Symphonia, having a hard time bothering to pick it up. Meantime tooling around in Shenmue and others. So I'm thrilled about FFX HD on Tuesday. I'm on old man spring break so I'm gonna sit around and play the crap out of that until inFamous releases.

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matt99
Saturday, March 15, 2014 @ 11:04:38 PM
Reply

I agree with your thoughts on Mirror's Edge 2 and open world games in general. While I do love games like Skyrim and GTA, I still want to play linear games like Uncharted or TLOU that sacrifice freedom and player choice for a great story. I think a story that is told from start to finish with a solid and coherent narrative will always be better than a story that involves player choice.

Also, slightly off topic but it's nice to be involved in an online community that actually respects others. The recent PS4 price increase in Canada has been all over gaming news sites and this is the only comments section that didn't have a single person insulting Canada in any way, everyone simply commented on the actual issue. Probably why this is my go to gaming site.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, March 15, 2014 @ 11:30:15 PM

Minnesota here; much love for our Canadian neighbors.

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Underdog15
Monday, March 17, 2014 @ 9:29:16 AM

I don't mind when people insult Canada. It just feeds the internationally perceived American stereotype, so that part sucks. But meh... people will be people. Don't go to comment sections to find any form of enlightenment. :p

A friend of mine was in a bad car accident, and the local newspaper put it on their website... the comments are disgusting. Not a single person to comment on how it's tragic or sad... Just people assuming they were "texting" because of age. (Doesn't even own a cell phone) They are fortunate I don't have the ability to reach through the screen and grab them.

Last edited by Underdog15 on 3/17/2014 9:30:54 AM

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CrusaderForever
Saturday, March 15, 2014 @ 11:29:39 PM
Reply

I, like many of you cannot wait to see the Last Guardian re-reveal. I hope it's stellar and scores a 10/10 because otherwise I don't see them making their money back.

PGU

Just finished inFAMOUS 2 and I thought it was light years better than inFAMOUS! The powers were so fun and I used all of them. Such a sad ending and I now understand why. That's all I will say. Preordered Second Son today on the PSN instead of MGS5GZ. I2 was so good that I am hungry for more inFAMOUS. Less than a week!

Last edited by CrusaderForever on 3/15/2014 11:32:17 PM

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Lawless SXE
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 12:22:11 AM
Reply

Agree on The Last Guardian. The silence really is disconcerting. Obviously, they announced it way too early (2009, wasn't it?), and there has been almost nothing on it aside from vague statements that it's still in production and swirlings of development difficulties. It's just not enough. Someone at Sony needs to step forward and make things clear.

Who is developing it and for what platform? Provide us with some details, progress reports, a screenshot or short video every now again. They don't need to drop everything about the game, but some proof that it is still in the works, and they haven't just been blowing smoke for the last four years would be much appreciated.

I have no problem with the open-world of Mirror's Edge 2. I think a series of open hub worlds would be better, but the original really did feel too straightforward most of the time, so I like the idea of widening the levels. I also like the revamped focus on combat, though I hope it isn't too pronounced. The game should be more of a first-person platformer than anything revolving around fighting. Which actually makes me kinda glad about the apparent treatment of it as a racer. That's a pretty cool concept.

But the blending of SP and MP... no. It works in Demon's Souls and Journey because they're lonely experiences and meeting another person has a lot more impact. It works in Watch Dogs because the central focus of the game is hacking, so to be hacked within your game is a really cool idea. But it doesn't seem to fit with Mirror's Edge unless there are missions specially designed for co-op (or competition, I guess. Perhaps a prize for the first player to deliver a package). I just don't really see it working.

Personal Update:
Got a D+ for my first uni assignment. My prevailing emotion was disappointment, oddly enough.
Played through Journey. It was good. Definitely going to have to go through it again, though. Really interesting game that makes me excited for whatever TGC does next. Played a couple more rounds of Dust, but meh... Kinda over it already. Seriously, how do people spend a year playing a single shooter? Started on Spec Ops: The Line. Considering the treatment of it in ludoliteracy circles, I really thought that it would be more immediately engaging, but I'm not giving up on it. Just having trouble getting into it.
I'm having a lot of trouble in finding something that I want to play. Nothing seems to be scratching that itch, which is frustrating. I want to love games again, but it's difficult.
There's more, but I'll leave it at that for now.
Peace y'all.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 9:05:58 AM

Sorry about the grade man, I had an unsatisfactory one as well, keep doing your best!

I gave up on Spec Ops The Line rather quickly.

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 3/16/2014 9:06:39 AM

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Lawless SXE
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 5:18:58 PM

Must do it differently here. It's a hair's-breadth off top marks, and the best mark that anyone in my class got. I was disappointed because I'm super weird like that.

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Gordo
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 5:49:31 PM

HD (high distinction) D (distinction) - C (credit) - P (pass) - F (fail).

My wife is studying too. Different from the ABCDE grades of my day.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 7:33:23 PM

D is as good as a fail here.

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Underdog15
Monday, March 17, 2014 @ 9:33:58 AM

Yeah I felt bad for ya too, at first. We go the A>B>C>D>F route.

Apparently they figure they should skip E and go to F so that the people getting F's know F stands for fail and don't wonder what an E is. lol

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homura
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 3:04:53 AM
Reply

Open world with cohesive narrative could work depending on the story and doesn't involved players choice that will be critical to the main story.

And of course it will be bad and boring if all future games will feel the same. We need diversity. And I think with the recent success of The Last Of Us, we will see more story driven games, whether it's linear or open world.

PGU:
Still into Record Of Agarest War 2.

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___________
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 3:31:52 AM
Reply

exactly why im so worried about TLG, its been in development for so long, suffered so many delays, had been redone so many times, but on hiatus, we all know what the result of these things is.
DNF and alien colonial marines had a very similar development process, and we all know how they turned out!
makes me even more worried that they refuse to share ANY details, hell they wont even say if its on ps4 or ps3!
everything just sounds like we dont know, how can a game be in development for so freaking long and still not know if its going to be a ps4 or a ps3, or both, title?
i mean for f*cks sake whats announcing the platform going to do, besides give people a ounce of confidence that this is actually in a good place and will be out soon?
showing off the game, fine, they dont want to do that because they dont want to make promises they cant keep.
thats fair enough.
but not saying which platform its going to be on, i mean come on you gotta give us SOMETHING after all this time!
hell id be content with a development diary detailing absolutely nothing about the game, as long as we get to hear the studios thoughts and at least its still proof the teams not disappeared into the stratosphere.
making you even more worried how many die hard $ony staff who have been with the company since playstations inception, have left during the development of this?
and how many will leave once its finally done?
and why are so many iconic developers suddenly jumping ship?

definitely a little worried with ME going open world, allot of games have tried to open up and it really has not worked.
look at KZSF the openness of its levels is exactly what spoiled it!
same thing goes for hitman absolution, the indoor restricted levels were fantastic, but once the game opened up it really did fall apart.
its like they treated level design and enemy location the same in the open world as they did indoors, and you just cant do that, especially in a stealth game!
exactly why im so worried for MGS5, open world and stealth games just dont mix!
then the whole SP melded with MP bullsh*t this generations suddenly been obsessed with is not helping either.
all i can think of is NFS rivals, a really cool game that was simply destroyed because of its force on online interaction.
one thing you really notice with games like that, level design goes out the sh*tter.
the world in NFS hot pursuit was so much fun to drive around in it was designed perfectly, actually better than burnout paradise and that was a blast to drive around in!
NFS rivals on the other hand, oh dear.........

i just finished my last game programming assignment this morning, so tomorrow we start on 3D animation.
oh god im so scared about this, ive never ever done anything near the level of maths it requires.
ever!
i mean going from where i am now, to going to 3D, is like going from 1+1 to freaking algebra!
oh well as the saying goes light the fire, and you either sink or swim.
would be nice if i could get my f*cking text book though, ever since the course started the books have been sold out.
one thing i F*CKING hate about AU, everythings 10 times more expensive, and you can NEVER find anything here!
if i had a nickel for every time i tried to buy something and its available overseas, but not here, id have enough to buy the big 3 10 fold!
so cant wait till i finish this course im finally going to be out of this overpriced useless sh*thole!

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Gordo
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 5:53:34 PM

Amazon is your friend for academic text books. Half the price of the rip off aussie stores.

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Banky A
Monday, March 17, 2014 @ 6:43:53 AM

Holy cow you're doing uni too (or some other tertiary?)

Now I know where all your stress comes from. I understand your life now thanks.

//Love you. Compsci for life
/*weLoveYou = false;
if (youProgram) {
weLoveYou = true;
}
return weLoveYou;
}
*/

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Underdog15
Monday, March 17, 2014 @ 9:35:46 AM

Heh, my first year spent as a CompSci major helped me understand that.

I couldn't bear the droning of the only 2 comp sci profs at my school, though, so I switched.

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PlatformGamerNZ
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 4:50:39 AM
Reply

yeah i think alot of people wud like to see a teaser trailer or gameplay trailer to show progress but there at least some gud on the horizon that being dark souls 2 and infamous and then there ain much till id year and then another wait till nearer the end of the year it's more spread out but alteast there ain't as much of a drought this year. at thats across the board something for everyone i hope anyway

happy gaming =)

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Advent Child
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 7:14:58 AM
Reply

Do you go the spellcaster route again Ben? Maybe that's where the frame rate issue is coming from? I haven't castes any spells so
I don't know however I haven't had any frame rate issues at all in my play through.

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JackC8
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 8:19:48 AM
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I really don't understand Sony's "answers" about The Last Guardian. I don't understand any company that makes entertainment products and has less than excellent communication with their customers. It's bad business. These aren't national secrets we're talking about for chrissakes. If they don't have the vaguest clue what state of completion it's in or when it might be released, then I really don't know what the heck kind of "business" they're running over there. Same with Polyphony Digital - they promised us a new track each month as DLC. They promised a course creator at launch. Three months after launch we've got nothing and PD doesn't think their customers are worth 5 minutes of their time to explain what's going on.

My pet peeve for the week, this quote from Bethesda in regards to the additional content they say they'll add to The Elder Scrolls Online: "And that means putting a lot of people and a lot of content creators towards having stuff that comes out regularly; every four weeks, five weeks, six weeks. Big new stuff that you want to do."

So in other words, far fewer people to work on the next Fallout and single player Elder Scrolls games than they would have otherwise had. So god only knows when they'll ever come out. That absolutely sucks because those are my favorite games and I'm not interested in this MMO thing at all.

PGU: This week I played a bit of New Vegas, got a new ENB mod that makes it look fantastic. Unfortunately it's still the same dull game that makes me feel like I'm in the 1950's, not in the future at all. Played a bit of GT6 online, I'm pretty much done with that. Seems like everybody else is as well. Just in the last month the online community has shrunk dramatically. Also did the new seasonal events, another three crummy time trails with no replay value whatsoever. Probably took PD about 10 minutes to set those up.

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Solid Fantasy
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 8:34:42 AM
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What do you think the odds are The Last Guardian is 85% done and could/should be shown off in full force... right now? If that was the case then yeah Sony should reconsider there marketing strategy. More likely than not the game must be going through some development shenanigans. I just hope it becomes tangible someday and for my brand new PS4!!

PGU: Almost done for the season. I'm going to try and grab Ground Zeros from the store shelves, but hold off on tearing the plastic off till my racing season is completely over. Nothing says spring break like a new Metal Gear. I did start in on KZ: Shadow Fall. Great game! I can see the 8/10 review score, but I still love it. Travailing or not the Vita will always get plenty of use. It would be nice to get through FFVII so I can do another play through of Golden Abyss. And I'm still wondering when Borderlands 2 is coming to the Vita.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 9:15:23 AM
Reply

PHU:

I haven't had a haircut in a long time; sporting the full Leon Kennedy at the moment.

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Shams
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 3:24:35 PM

I've had my hair long for about 3 years (I changed job locations and refused to have my hair cut since my favorite barber was no longer within convenient driving distance). Every now and then, I'll be playing with my baby niece in my lap, and my Mum will run a stealth mission, and take a few inches off of my pony tail from behind.

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matt99
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 9:37:19 AM
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Anyone else starting to think that The Last Guardian devs suffered extreme cutbacks and now its just 2 guys in a garage somewhere? It would explain why it's taking so long.

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Beamboom
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 9:39:16 AM
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Ben, I got a question: Why do you say things like "These details are pretty damn awesome" in the article about Mirrors Edge 2 earlier this week, if what you really feel is reflected here now? It's just so weirdly inconsistent. I've noticed this earlier too.

PGU:
Still playing Skyrim. And I got this interesting experience of being more and more enthusiastic about the game the longer I play it. Quite interesting.

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Beamboom
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 10:11:49 AM

As for the worries expressed about every game being built on the same sandbox formula: I don't see that ever happen.
I think already today we see a backlash from the multiplayer wave we've had the later years, with multiple high-profile AAA games being single player only, with no multiplayer modes whatsoever. Multiplayer never took over the entire gaming landscape and never will.

I think *that* is an accurate indication of the mechanics in these respects: That diversity will prevail as long as there is a market for it. And there will *always* be a market for linear action games, just like there will always be a market for strategy games, racing games, simulators of various kinds, and so forth.

There's simply nothing to worry about!

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WorldEndsWithMe
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 10:36:43 AM

He's probably separating his personal feelings about things from how they will be received by the gaming community writ large. "This will be awesome in its own right, just not for me." Just a thought.

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Beamboom
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 11:05:07 AM

Well in that case I think it's better to just leave it up to the reader to decide what to think of it, if you don't even yourself agree with what you write.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 1:43:31 PM

Eh, ya should be able to argue many sides and hold various opinions on the same things.

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Beamboom
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 3:11:55 PM

It's of course nothing wrong in arguing many sides in an article, I just think it's so confusing when it's written like it's your own opinions, and they wildly differ from article to article.

No biggie, I just find it so weirdly inconsistent. So I commented on it. It's like those articles are written for "someone else", while these Weekly comments are where he can say what he *really* mean. Like he can't criticise the title in question in the "regular" articles.

Last edited by Beamboom on 3/16/2014 3:14:40 PM

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Lawless SXE
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 5:26:07 PM

Could be that he's had time to reflect on his original opinion and come to the realisation that it's not really what he wants to see. Also, he seems to be using the MEdge2 details here as a platform to vent about the prevalence of open-world games and seamless SP/MP, rather than specifically those factors being present in MEdge2.

Also, that pretty damn awesome comment was in the article descriptor. It's designed to draw clicks. The article itself only mentioned the details as "intriguing". :) Splitting hairs, I know.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 9:34:48 PM

I get that it can be confusing but for the most part, World is right.

I try to be pretty optimistic about everything in all posts, just because I want the fans of that particular game/genre to be excited. This is supposed to be a fun hobby, after all.

But Lawless is partly right, too, because I did have some extra time to reflect on the details, and I realized that EVERY SINGLE time I see details of a next-gen game these days, it always - and I mean ALWAYS - includes an open-world/sandbox format.

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Beamboom
Monday, March 17, 2014 @ 4:31:30 AM

I believe there are a lot of developers out there who's over the years built up a big hunger to *wanting* to let their games be more open, but have been unable to due to the hardware restrictions.
So yeah, I agree that right now it seems everyone are talking about open worlds but that's just cause now they *can* without being code wizards or let go of too much from their visual ambitions of the game.

But I'm not worried. Not one bit. And please note that while I personally am very pro player freedom and will argue for that in most applicable discussions, I am maybe even *more* pro diversity in the gaming landscape. That is INSANELY important - yes essential. I *want* a gaming world where I don't want to play every single title.

So if every game turns open world, it would be a very sad day for me too.

But again - I'm not worried. Not one bit.

Last edited by Beamboom on 3/17/2014 4:31:59 AM

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BikerSaint
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 9:42:28 AM
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Until I see something new from The Last Guardian, I'm considering it as vaporware.

As for Mirror's Edge, the 1st game's still in my backlog, so I can't really do any assumption on what's been said about the upcoming one.

My PGU....
Finished Tomb Raider a couple nights ago(loved it) & also finished Crysis 3 last night(good, but I liked C-2 better).
Then I decided to start FarCry 3:Blood Dragon last night(& I'm totally loving it).

Next, I'm probably going to be playing either Rain, Brothers, or Puppeteer.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 10:39:27 AM

Glad you liked Tomb Raider man. I've got Crysis 3 but haven't had time to play it (loved C2). The series is almost too intense for me though.

Blood Dragon is such a blast from the past it should be right up your alley if you enjoyed the 80s.

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Beamboom
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 10:51:08 AM

I liked C2 better as well, Biker. The third is not bad, not at all, but the second were just plain awesome.

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BikerSaint
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 7:21:35 PM

yeah, I don't know what it was that I could put my finger on about C3, but I felt that all throughout the game that something was slightly off about the game itself, & it just wasn't clicking with the same great vibe as I got with C1 & C2(especially c2), that it was just another good Ok game.

I also thought it was a wasted opportunity that we weren't given a chance to be able play at least few mission(or parts within a mission) as prophet's side kick, Psycho too, as seen totally from his side of the same evolving storyline.

Plus...after all the hoopla CryTek had been making making about their CryEngine 3 being so great(especially with all their tech demos), I also thought that the graphics in C3 seemed to be a bit downgraded since C2 too.

I don't know....maybe it's just me becoming a bit of a sourpuss in my old age as I had expected better & better things over time, LOL

Last edited by BikerSaint on 3/16/2014 7:38:27 PM

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BikerSaint
Monday, March 17, 2014 @ 4:13:21 AM

BTW, here's a pretty good fan-made live action Tomb Raider on YouTube......

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bnQTW9V61jo

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xenris
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 11:15:11 AM
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I find it weird they haven't said anything about The Last Guardian either. I was so excited for the game when I first saw it because personally I think Ico and Shadow of the Colossus are some of the best games I have ever played. Hopefully the delay is getting it from the PS3 to the PS4 or something like that. Still no details is kind of odd, especially for how longs its been in the cooker.

I really liked Mirrors edge and I can see how an open world for that style of game would be really really cool. It fits with the lore of the world however, I will say that open world has to be done right if it is going to work for ME2. I prefer the style of Dark Souls where everything is connected but its dense. I find most open worlds make a big world for the sake of being big but there isn't exactly that much to do there or what is there is repetitive. Also the potential for bugs and glitches goes way up.

PGU:

Dark Souls 2 took 16 of my hours over the week and I worked full time...sooooo yeah I would say I'm hooked. I do have some problems with certain design choices, like having to level up at the lady instead of bonfires, I hate the adaptability stat changes, and sometimes the combat feels less responsive that DS1. But I like the changes to the combat, the depth they added, and I really like the covenant system.

@Ben, I actually haven't had any significant frame rate issues in the 16 hours I have played. It sometimes goes up to 60fps, but usually stays around 30. Never had it affect my gameplay though, nothing like blight town from DS1 and even then I didn't have the issues there like most people did. I wonder if different PS3 models make for different experiences here?

I don't doubt some people are having these I'm just wondering what would be causing it.

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Shauneepeak
Sunday, March 16, 2014 @ 7:48:12 PM

I'm around 36hrs into Dark Souls 2 and have noticed almost 0 frame rate issues only one that really stood out was in Shaded Woods but only lasted for maybe half a second and then evened out from what I keep hearing you would think Shaded Woods was a constant 5-10FPS I am seriously wondering if there was a batch of bad disks or something?

Also leveling at the Emerald Maiden is a throw back to Demon's Souls there are quite a bit of throw backs actually leveling is one, warping is another, then there's the lifegems which are similar to the herbs, and the Red Phantoms don't simply invade out of nowhere but are regular enemies like they were in Demon's Souls.

Also Ben you already seem to have your mind made up but I am going to have a seriously hard time choosing between Infamous and Dark Souls and I LOVE Infamous it's still the only game I have platinumed and I am soooo close to plating Infamous 2, planned on doing it this week but got WAY too sucked into Dark Souls 2.

I really, really hope Infamous doesn't let us down I at least already feel like I am going to like Delsin as a character from the little I have seen of the game.

Also sadly I feel if we don't hear about The Last Guardian by the end this year's E3 I may finally have to give up on it no matter how much that is going to kill me, I really feel that a tear may end up being shed.

Last edited by Shauneepeak on 3/16/2014 7:50:45 PM

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