Ben's Week In Review: November 1
Two things: Don't eat too much candy tonight and don't forget to set your clocks back. :)
PS4 exclusives lead the way for me next year
Yes, I've said it many times- the exclusive lineup for PlayStation 4 hasn't really started rolling just yet. However, after this past week's Paris Games event, I think it's clear that exclusive software might top my most-anticipated list for 2016.
It probably begins with Quantic Dream's newly unveiled IP, Detroit. Quantic has long since been one of my favorite developers, primarily because they focus so strongly on narrative. The idea of "interactive dramas" is very much David Cage's brainchild and I've thoroughly enjoyed the storytelling advances we've seen in Indigo Prophecy, Heavy Rain and Beyond: Two Souls. I expect nothing less than brilliance when Detroit arrives. And don't forget that awesome Kara demo; that alone made me want to play whatever Quantic Dream was working on.
Then we've got The Last Guardian, No Man's Sky (confirmed for a June 2016 release), Horizon: Zero Dawn, Gran Turismo Sport, Street Fighter V, and of course, Uncharted 4: A Thief's End. Of these, I admit to having little interest in No Man's Sky, despite its lofty aims, and I'm not a fighting fan so SFV is out. But the others? Hell yeah. In fact, I daresay that my top 5 most wanted 2016 games right now are PS4 exclusives:
- 1. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End
- 2. Detroit
- 3. The Last Guardian
- 4. Horizon: Zero Dawn
- 5. Gran Turismo Sport
If the actual GT7 is announced, it will probably replace Gran Turismo Sport on that list, and depending on how the new Polyphony effort turns out, I might want Deus Ex: Mankind Divided or Mirror's Edge: Catalyst more. And no, Final Fantasy XV doesn't register.
I'm sorry, Platinum, but that isn't Nier
It just isn't. The gameplay they showed off this past week is nifty and all, but that's not the Nier I remember. Basically, all I see out of Nier: Automata is Bayonetta or Metal Gear Rising. Now, both of the latter titles are great games but they're hardly RPGs and lest we forget, the original Nier by Cavia was an action/RPG. There was a big world to explore, complete with towns and side-quests and NPCs and all that stuff. There were even some puzzles and other adventure elements as well, but I'm seeing none of that in the sequel. Not only that, but it's almost as if they want to sideline the narrative by giving us a freakin' android devoid of emotion as a main character. That's what you do when you want to fixate on the gameplay; it doesn't make for a strong narrative beginning.
Well, as good as this studio is, they have zero experience with anything even remotely related to role-playing. This was why I had my concerns and reservations and based on that footage, I was right. Now, maybe they haven't shown us the role-playing parts yet. Maybe that's coming. And if it does, if I see a big open world with towns and NPCs and some semblance of a plot, I'll gladly eat my words. And let me reiterate: Nier: Automata could be a fantastic game, just the way it is; my point is that it's not an RPG. At least, not so far.
Personal gaming update
I couldn't possibly care less about what other people are saying about Assassin's Creed Syndicate. If you're giving that game a 4 or a 5, you must never award any game over a 6. If you're complaining about the series "never changing" or some such nonsense, you just flat-out ignored the improvements. And that'd be tough to do because the improvements are found in every facet of the production. But anyway, I'll be playing that through the holidays, I'm sure. But I have to tackle Fallout 4 now, which is here. Yes, I'm sure some of you are jealous. I can't tell you if you should be jealous, though, because I haven't really gotten past the first hour or so. And I also have Need for Speed, so I'll have to take care of that before the week's out as well.
Then comes Call of Duty: Black Ops III and Star Wars: Battlefront. 'sigh' The insanity won't stop until after that.
10/31/2015 Ben Dutka