Ben's Week In Review: February 19
A week of Vita and Twisted Metal. ...gee, hard to complain. ;)
Don't Call of Duty fans deserve a new engine?
I will be the first to admit that Infinity Ward and Treyarch have gotten a ridiculous amount of mileage out of the engine that began its lifespan in 2005. I will also admit that the multiplayer in last year's Modern Warfare 3 was pretty damn good, and the fans seem just fine with that production (as they do with most every iteration). But you know, while I'm convinced Activision won't try to produce a new engine until they tax a team with making a Call of Duty for new hardware, I really think that's completely unfair. It's also seems to be counterproductive if you examine the long-term; you really need to look to the future.
But rather than go with the business angle of this, why not go with the sentimental. I think Activision owes the CoD fans. I think that company owes the fans big. And I think the fans have every right to demand the best experience possible for their favorite franchise; hence, a new engine. And yet, supposedly, here comes Black Ops 2 and I get the feeling that even the die-hard followers might sense staleness this time around.
Third-party devs abandoning the Vita? Nope.
Nobody really believes those ridiculous rumors, do they? I mean, I have no doubt some game designers believe they can make more money with the 3DS, or they've got projects in the hopper better suited to Nintendo's platform. I also have no doubt that many developers are skeptical of the Vita's chances. What I'm not about to believe, however, is that developers are flat-out ignoring the Vita based on a prediction...that isn't how business operates, and let's not forget that the PSP was very good to quite a few designers. You have to select the right type of project, of course, and it may take time for the Vita to develop a large installed userbase.
But to believe any developer will turn away from a new piece of hardware before it's even available in the Western hemisphere is just...too absurd for words. Let's just hope the US launch goes well; there better be plenty of Vitas to go around. Don't make that mistake again, Sony.
Personal gaming update
As you might have already surmised by my hands-on impressions and more than a few articles, we're all about taking care of PlayStation Vita coverage right now. In many ways, I'm very impressed, and I really love the software selection. Wipeout 2048 is great, Hot Shots Golf: World Invitational is loads of fun, and Uncharted: Golden Abyss is quite the experience (review coming very soon). Other reviews on the way- Dungeon Hunter Alliance, Little Deviants, Asphalt Injection, and Army Corps of Hell.
And although Twisted Metal wasn't quite the masterpiece I had hoped for, it's still a fantastic effort and the long-time fans ought to be satisfied. This week, it's all about more Vita (with some FFXIII-2 mixed in, if I can manage it), and we'll announce the winner of those two Vita games. There were a ton of people at the party in Home, too, so that was great!
Lastly, expect a video to soon arrive on our YouTube Channel that highlights the Vita and the first three games that caught my attention.
2/18/2012 Ben Dutka