Ben's Week In Review: June 24
We're entering another apparent summer slump so maybe I can catch up on a few games...or play a few classics. :)
I'm just not sure RE6 will be "elite" quality
For the record, I liked Resident Evil 5 just fine. It was a mistake to stick with the tank controls for one more iteration, but being so used to that mechanic in the franchise, I was okay with it. Plus, I think the co-op dynamic with Sheva was excellent; it was really very well done and it never felt like I was babysitting. Provided the AI in RE6 is just as good (if not better), I'm sure the adventure will be plenty entertaining and lots of fun. And after watching those 19 minutes of gameplay, I have to say I'm encouraged. However, I'm just not sure Capcom can give us an elite AAA title that can compete with the Western gems.
I mean, the industry just keeps pushing forward, and I see a few examples of the Japanese developer's lagging in those videos. So while I'm fairly convinced that RE6 will be a good game, I'm not about to say it will be a great game. That's actually more disheartening than I would've believed, and I think it's because we've always trusted certain franchises to deliver. And sadly, too many of those franchises that seem to be falling behind are on the Japanese side. Kinda depressing.
Digital distribution won't stop me from playing, but...
Most analysts say digital distribution will eventually dominate the game industry, and Sony boss Scott Rohde says it's "inevitable." I don't doubt that. And as much as I will miss the old physical media, I'll still play the best games available, regardless of what format they utilize. Still, let me say this- I think there will always be a place for physical media among the hardcore collectors. I was looking through the Game Arts packages of Lunar: Silver Star Story Complete and Lunar 2: Eternal Blue and old-school RPG fans know exactly what I'm talking about. Yeah, they were pricey, but they were also incomparable. We loved coming home, cracking 'em open, and spreading out the awesomeness.
It's true that they were basically Collector's Editions. But that leads me to my next point: What collector wants a digital special edition? Seriously? The whole point of those editions is to get all the extra goodies that are absolutely physical and look great in any gaming library. There will always be people who want those, damnit.
Personal gaming update
Still playing Lollipop Chainsaw and I had intended to be playing Spec Ops: The Line, which I got this past week. But at the risk of breaking embargo rules, let's just say I won't be finishing that game because...um...well, the reasons will be made clear in the review, which will go up this week. Just don't expect a whole lot of critical acclaim. Nolan North can't save it, unfortunately; I'll elaborate in a few days.
There isn't much coming out that I want, although I do plan to return to my Shadow of the Colossus play-through. I also want to play ICO, just because I didn't actually finish it back when it came out on the PS2. I honestly can't remember why; it had nothing to do with the game (it was fantastic, of course), so I must've gotten sidetracked by an RPG or something. By the way, speaking of the Lunar games above, I was going through my PS1 collection and realized just how many gameplay hours were offered by certain RPGs...hell, I put 120 hours into Saga Frontier because I finished each character's story.
Interestingly enough, on the back of the box, it says "140 hours of gameplay." Yeah, Skyrim is technically "endless" but it isn't story-driven, now is it? What games today provide over 100 hours of story-driven gameplay? Hell, what provide more than 30? Even the plot-driven RPGs don't often do that, unless you play them twice or go online (White Knight Chronicles springs to mind). I'm just saying, things are different.
6/23/2012 Ben Dutka