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What Next-Gen Gameplay Improvement Do You Most Want?

With new hardware comes more power. With more power comes expanded opportunities for game developers.

A better technical presentation the whole way 'round goes without saying, but what do you want to see from a gameplay perspective? What improvement(s) do you expect to see in the new generation of interactive entertainment?

Are you anticipating greatly improved artificial intelligence? That's often hit or miss depending on the developer these days, but greater hardware capacity could mean a much stiffer AI challenge. The more realistic a virtual foe is, the more difficult it will be. But maybe you want better physics in general. Perhaps you're looking for that truly realistic feel when moving your character around. You want him or her to interact accurately and faithfully with the environment, and you want the environment to respond accordingly. We've already heard teams like Ready at Dawn (The Order: 1886) talk about this.

Then again, maybe you're looking forward to the biggest virtual worlds ever seen. And it's not so much the size of these worlds that entices you, but the dynamic level of authenticity we'll see. Everything should seem more alive and more immersive than ever before. All of this, however, is very technical. For me, I want to see more steps taken in the artistic realms. I want to see vastly improved writing and character development; I want thrilling, dramatic adventures that affect me emotionally. The days of satisfaction gleaned from taxed reflexes are gone. ;)

How about you?

Tags: next generation, next gen consoles, gaming industry, video games

9/3/2013 9:46:01 PM Ben Dutka

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Comments (41 posts)

LegendaryWolfeh
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 @ 10:06:22 PM
Reply

Obviously the most important thing for next-gen is the ability to seamlessly update my facebook and be able to watch tv using my console as a tuner.

Why else would anyone even buy a console? Games? Better Software and Hardware? Silly people.

Agree with this comment 22 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Jawknee
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 @ 10:38:14 PM

Lol

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LimitedVertigo
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 @ 11:17:26 PM

Dude you need to come around here more often. I love you

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Underdog15
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 @ 11:34:03 PM

lol

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cLoudou
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 @ 11:56:51 PM

Need more Wolfeh.

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LegendaryWolfeh
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 3:55:34 AM

Haha, well with my PC being fixed and all I don't intend to disappear again anytime soon. ;)

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bldudas1
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 7:59:49 AM

lol

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Cho_Quin
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 @ 10:13:11 PM
Reply

Physics and a Stiffer AI are something are two of the most important thing Im looking foward in thisgeneration. But the most important for me its going to be The hmegue maps... I mean imagine a Fallout game the 5 tomes the size of oblivion...

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PC_Max
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 @ 10:24:46 PM
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On top of the Ai issue there are some things hardware cannot improve on directly but indirectly it can enhance how a story is told. So hopefully we will get interesting in depth story telling. Well, a continuation from those already good storytellers (uh hum, Naughty Dog), but would be nice to see it across the dev board from others.

And with the new hardware and faster processing times.... I would like to see a day where loading times between levels, cut-scenes, and just loading a saved game... shorten if not almost seamless like. I remember how Eidos did that with Soul Reaver. Gave you some long corridors to traverse as it loaded the level you were entering. It felt seemless and that was on the PS1/PC.

And.. and... and... everything hopefully will fall in to place.

Keep playing!

Last edited by PC_Max on 9/3/2013 10:24:57 PM

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broox9
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 10:09:40 PM

Whatever Ni No Kuni did with loading was pretty good. The load times are VERY short.

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Clamedeus
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 @ 10:33:50 PM
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I like the fact that most games are being targeted for 60fps and 1080P which is big for me.

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LimitedVertigo
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 @ 11:18:11 PM
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Better physics. The more realistic objects act the more immersed I become.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 11:20:17 AM

Me agree, as cool as God of War Ascension is it kinda hurts to run against invisible walls and such.

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Zeronoz
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 @ 11:53:36 PM
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Three words; no loading screen

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Victor321
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 12:24:35 AM
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For me, it's artificial intelligence. Some of my most favourite games of all time (whether they be ones that released before 2000 or are as recent as The Last of Us) feature wonderfully expressive and exorbitant graphics. I feel many of us can say the same for our own respective games we hold dear.

With this sentiment in mind, some games I greatly look forward to (such as The Witcher 3) will look phenomenal; overall the graphical quality for AAA blockbusters is high and that is now expected and not something of a surprise.

Therefore, I foresee a lot of room for growth within the authenticity and purpose that artificial intelligence's role in video games inhabit.

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PlatformGamerNZ
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 12:26:44 AM
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honestly wat i want most outta nxt-gen so far is the enviromental realness the ghaphical awsome and realness because that seems to me to be one thing they cud really improve across the board how gud the detail of the enviroment in-game is. but also smoothness as some of you seemed to mention and i don't see y not with the boat load of power we have been promised. but hey thats just my take wats ur's.

happy gaming =)

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PlatformGamerNZ
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 12:28:51 AM
Reply

no loading screen and better AI wud be gud also i think the whole idea of level-ution or the reactive enviroment i think is a gud place to start and move forward from.

happy gaming =)

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cLoudou
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 1:18:55 AM
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Forget physics, and realism, those are nice but I'd rather a game be fun and immersive first.

A game can be all kinds of pretty but if it's boring as sh!t there's really no point in playing.

Agree with this comment 5 up, 2 down Disagree with this comment

Harerazer
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 11:33:36 AM

Wait a minute...how do you downvote this comment?

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Beamboom
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 4:17:23 AM
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Populated, organic, persistent and living'n'breathing open world experiences with all the technicalities this implies. That's on top of my list.

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___________
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 5:36:12 AM
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better everything really.
more reactive AI, a more interactive world, far better physics, a more realistic lighting engine, better storytelling, and far better character development.
if i had to pick one though it would have to be for the world to feel more alive.
im so sick of games that are clearly scripted, especially in stealth games.
AI is on a set pattern, and you have to break that pattern for them to stray off that path.
we need to break through the cliches of game design 101, and make these worlds a far more believable place!

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Lawless SXE
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 6:42:11 AM
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I agree with Ben about a general improvement in the writing of games. There have already been some really good titles in this respect, IMO, but there is still a hell of a long way to go. Continuing with this, I'd also petition for a greater marriage between gameplay and narrative. For example, the opening scene of TLoU is utterly incredible and then it just kinda... devolves a little. Most games don't even try to elicit an emotional reaction aside from awe at setpieces during gameplay and that, I feel, is a massive mistake as it misses the unique aspect of gaming: interaction. You can make a person emote through a cinematic quite easily, but doing the same via gameplay... there's a challenge.

An improvement to AI would be nothing to sneeze at. So many games just do it by rote as you cruise down corridors blasting anyone dumb enough to get their head in your crosshairs. There is so much more than could be done, especially in the realms of shooter and slow combat games (like Ryse and Ninja Gaiden as opposed to GoW).

Finally, a greater sense of dynamism. One thing that I would love to see in GTA V, considering that you can play as multiple characters, is you'll have been wreaking havoc and escaped the cops, maybe switched to a new character when you suddenly get a phone call that the cops have closed in on the first guy because of what you did. And, if you can't get him out of trouble again, he goes into the police lock-up for a while and you can't play as him. Also, rock climbing in The Elder Scrolls.

And general expansion of gameplay mechanics. So much more can be done than what is being done.

I know you said one, but gaming often feels so limited by its being a relatively new medium.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 11:21:56 AM

I'd like more variation in the gameplay of each game. TLoU was so narrow in this respect it hurt.

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Ludicrous_Liam
Friday, September 06, 2013 @ 11:45:51 AM

Y'know, it's at this point I really do question your ability to judge what a good game is.

Two points I wanna clear up incase anybody comes across this and gets the wrong idea about TLOU. 1. Lawless, you say that TLOU doesn't merge gameplay and narrative and 2. World, you say that gameplay doesn't vary.

(Heeere we f*cking go. Again. lol.)

1. I'm not sure how far you've gotten Lawless, so if you're reading this you should probably wait until you've completed it. But yeah, there are SO many moments in TLOU where gameplay is used as a narrative tool.

The beginning where you're holding your daughter is used as narrative tool in gameplay, as she gets shot while held in your arms. In the end with Ellie, your mind INSTANTLY thinks of that, and you're like, oh shit not again. So it creates a certain amount of agency to that scene that wouldn't be there otherwise.

But just, all the way through the game. The combat sequences are telling you, through gameplay, how people in this world have to survive. The sense of tension you get, tells you what people feel a lot of the time in this world. Also, because every game is built off the player's want to 'win' the game, it means you create a sort of empathy with Joel and Ellie, because you know these things need to be done to progress.

When you're exploring, the enviornments all have a story to tell, that has real links to the narrative. A lot of atmosphere is built up with that visual storytelling, and the story feeds off that atmosphere. Think of it like in a book, where it is being described to you what the room the characters are now in looks like. Similarily, it is subtly done; nothing is explictly told to you what happened here. Just like you read between the lines in a book, you build up the world in your head - you search around and get a sense of the world. Except you have this visual and interactive 'stimulus' that is TLOU. You know from being in combat what people have to do in this world. When in exploration, it contrasts to how people used to live.

And it kinda goes back to what World is saying, as each gameplay segment is relaying something in the story, usually by contrasting things between them. Like when you're in exploration, you have time to think; time to explore at your own leisure, forgetting about the threats of this world. This is then contrasted in high-tension combat where you're reminded of the threats, and those perpetual moments of exploration seem a million miles away. It creates a flow and pace to that game that is shaped per how Joel & Ellie's relationship develops in the story. Because all those things you're feeling in gameplay, the tension, the lamentation, the beauty - Joel and Ellie are feeling those things too.

And then, when the characters get into emotional situations in their relationship, game mechanics are used to show that feeling. I can only write so much, but in the university, you can't shoot the shotgun guy without Ellie's distraction. This is when Joel is feeling increasingly helpless, relying more on Ellie. And then in Winter, he's obviously fully relying on her. So you've already gotten the sense that Joel needs Ellie at this time in gameplay, before the cutscene. What TLOU does a lot actually is build up emotional power behind a cutscene from gameplay.

And then, you start Winter, and you're trying to kill a deer. You're killing it just to survive; to keep Joel alive. And as the player, you're doing this by following the blood trail. Again it uses thematic mirrowing to show that, the people that did that to Joel, who was dripping with blood, were only surviving, just like you. And David comes along, he even says something like 'You're no different to us'. So in the story, it uses the theme of 'there's no right or wrong', and this is shown in gameplay, right there. As again, you can use that empathy to show this; you needed to kill the deer to 'win'.

And it really uses the perspective change to highlight things in the narrative. It creates tension by YOU, as the player, knowing where Ellie is and Joel doesn't, but you're in a snow storm, so it's useless. But you will then get into the same buildings, and you remember playing as Ellie, so you know you're on the right track. But you were in a snow storm as Ellie too, so you're still lost.

But as well as that, it actually disconnects you from Joel by switching to and away from Ellie in an intresting way. What this serves to do is expose you to where they are in their relationship. Ellie (you) didn't need Joel; she did it by herself. Joel wasn't needed in the end...but you're glad that he (or is it you?) found her when he did anyway, because he's the only person in the world right now that she has that bond with. You know this because you were there all the way, from the beginning - just like Joel.

And then in the next season, just through the gesture system, and optional conversations, you see that Ellie is visibly shaken. Because of how you played it before, you know she's inquizitive to every optional conversation (even if they seem like mundane things you and I...and Joel), often prompting her own ("what's a coffee shop?"). But now, she is very distant and unresponsive. And then the ladder moment is where it really starts to make you think. You're thinking about her, because as the player we knew she was in a cage, like in captivity, and now she's going to the firelies irrespective if she wants to or not, so you're mulling over things like free will and...then giraffes.

It is such a beautiful piece of symbolism, because these would've been in captivity, against their will. And now that this outbreak has occured - now that humans are mostly gone - allows for this beauitful moment to happen. And then you see the change in Ellie, she starts resembling the old Ellie. She can still see the beauty in life. It plants the seed for later in the game, where you're just like, fuck these guys I'm killing all of them and taking Ellie. If that means destorying humanity? So be it.

Maybe it's because you're not used to a narrative being used this way in a game before, but yeah, gameplay is DEFIANTELY merged with the narrative. I'm astonished someone like you Lawless wouldn't pick up on these things.


2. World, I really don't know what you mean. Gameplay doesn't vary? The pacing is nigh-on PERFECT. You play VERY differently against the military, because they always have armour, better equiped, slightly different formations, and the hunters, who have more guys so you're liable to being flanked etc. And then you have the infected where your whole way of playing changes, and not forgetting there are multiple stages, sometimes in the same room.

Also, even if you think playing two sections that both have hunters isn't variable enough...I still don't know what you're talking about. For example, playing against them in the bookstore, and then in the hotel - well, they pan out very differently.

And then, exploration is a big pace-changer. Maybe you didn't care to look around as you aren't forced to, but there is visual storytelling all over. These two different gameplay scenarios are both paced per how the story progresses and how the characters change because of that.


It just boggles my mind that you guys can't appreciate this game for how freakin amazing it is. Kinda depressing too.

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VampDeLeon
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 7:46:16 AM
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I'd like to see less obvious invisible walls. I can understand the director's point of view that to continue on with the story, you probably shouldn't try to vault over what looks like a climbable fence or interactive object that may stray you off too far in the other direction... but unless it's to avoid a death, it'd be cool to have more alternate paths for the curious player.

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Beamboom
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 9:55:15 AM

Oh man how I hate invisible walls. Utterly annoying.

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Solid Fantasy
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 7:49:28 AM
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Smarter AI, Better physics, and better 3D at 60fps and 1080 sure would be nice and all, but what I really want is to stop seeing so many open world games that have little to know story! wtf?! If we're going to see less and less linear style games I should hope that the open world sand boxes will pick up the slack in terms of storytelling and pacing. A decent plot with a virtually nameless character is getting old. I never played through infamous 1 or 2 but I think there is hope for Second Son on this front.

Last edited by Solid Fantasy on 9/4/2013 7:50:42 AM

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bldudas1
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 8:00:15 AM
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Better hardware to make bigger and better games.

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Masszt3r
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 8:29:04 AM
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Better AI and longer games. The former may apply to games like Skyrim or GTA, but non-rpg or sandbox games unfortunately aren't very long. There are exceptions of course: TLOU, MGS4, DS, etc. But perhaps most importantly is simply the fun factor. Many developers focus so much on the graphics and realism that they forget that some games are made to be fun.

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gumbi
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 9:48:30 AM
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I just want local multi-player modes to come back to the norm. Once upon a time it was the only way to play multi-player, and for me it still is. I especially hate it when games that feature co-op campaigns are online only.

Everything else is just icing on the cake for me. I'm already blown away by most of the stuff that's come out this generation.

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shaydey77
Thursday, September 05, 2013 @ 11:09:06 AM

100 Percent agree. There's no better feeling than high fiving one of your friends after defeating the next challenge of a game!

If I want to share something I'd rather the person/people be beside me ready to bask in the awesomeness of the accomplishment with me, not some 'like' on a social media website.

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xenris
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 10:03:17 AM
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AI for me is what I want improved the most, I want the AI to react, and value their life somewhat.

I don't care what game it was but the AI still does things that no human would do unless they were psychotic.

One example was when the mansion was burning in uncharted 3 and the enemy goons were waiting around in the burning video just in order to fight you. I get that its cinematic and all but unless these random goons were getting paid six figure incomes on a daily basis no one in their right mind would stay to kill some dude while the building around them is burning to the ground.

That is just one example of AI acting like AI, and just distractions for the player. Imagine if those enemies were trying to run out of the mansions too, but also trying to sabotage you a little bit while running out of the building. Maybe pushing stuff down in front of you or shooting floor boards out of the house to try and collapse them on you etc.

Stealth game AI improvement would be nice too. I want a stealth game where if you are seen once the enemy is from then on in a completely different state, easier distracted, more alert etc. Which could set you up for interesting gameplay. Maybe spook the enemy and then you can distract them easier with sound distractions etc.

I just want to see more interesting ideas, I want to see devs doing stuff that THEY want without trying to cram those ideas into a shooter or something.

Anyway I'm excited to see what devs actually do and hope its just not all about improved graphics.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 11:24:15 AM

"Value their life" yes this is what I want.

When a game is trying to be serious but the enemies are just killing machines focused on me above all else (even when the whole building is collapsing or burning down) I'm like "whaaaa?"

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 10:32:30 AM
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*crosses next question-based article off list*

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Brighat
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 3:09:20 PM
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Improved collision detection and less of that annoying "arm getting into another arm" stuff. I don't know what it's like on the high-end PCs out there. I know it's something we can never eliminate but making it occur less and less is acceptable. I'd like to see less focus on using camera or what Wolf mentioned going forwards but that isn't going to happen.

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xnonsuchx
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 3:11:53 PM
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I just want to see more games that run at 1080p and 60fps. 720p pretty much became the standard for the current HD console generation, with only a handful that were capable of 'Full HD'...though I think the PS3 had more 1080p titles than the 360.

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Nestore
Wednesday, September 04, 2013 @ 5:02:11 PM
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Gameplay is generally not tied to hardware. For PS3, the best gameplay improvements were probably in Demon's/Dark Souls, and I never could have articulated that before hand.

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BattleFox21
Thursday, September 05, 2013 @ 8:12:34 AM
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A clan app to keep together ur buddies through all the games and we (on the Sony forums) have been asking for a reputation system similar to what xbone has announced.

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MKM
Friday, September 06, 2013 @ 12:06:39 PM
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I'm just a simple girl with simple needs. I just want a game that appeals to me. There were only two games that I bought for the PS3 - FF XIII and WKC, and neither one pulled me for any length of time or made me want to replay, like many of the games I got for the PS2.

I spent more time watching my husband play his games. From that perspective, I want to see more games with a story I can enjoy, along the lines of RDR or Uncharted. I want to see something that will make it easy for me to continue playing wingman for him on the military FPS.

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trumpetmon65
Friday, September 06, 2013 @ 4:20:08 PM
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faster downloading for us ps3 users. I have a really good connection, but you can't tell with how slowly games download

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trumpetmon65
Friday, September 06, 2013 @ 4:21:39 PM
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oh, and a sequel to Lair. Second time's the charm right?

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