The Tuesday Letters page worries Ubisoftthe all-digital future, as one reader praises Zelda: Tears Of The Kingdom’s Depths.
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I fully understood the concerns of Reader Feature the weekend, fearing that Sony would collapse and that PlayStation 5 seems to be going nowhere. I think I’m probably a little more optimistic than him, but it worries me that the only rumors we seem to have are about hardware no one needs and wants and still nothing about games.
Everyone assumes Sony has a bunch of it that they haven’t announced yet – they must have it, surely – but why haven’t they leaked, considering everything else? It’s disturbing and I think the point the Reader’s Feature made well is that it’s so inexplicable. I can’t imagine why Sony is doing this or what they think they’ll get out of it.
And then we have the PS5 Pro. For what? Surely they must know that there is no demand for it. We have… three PlayStation 5 exclusives so far? What the hell do we need a Pro for, what games will it improve performance? We need more games, not consoles.
Over the past three years, Sony has released the PlayStation 5, PlayStation VR2, and this year Project Q. Then next year, apparently, they’ll have the PS5 Pro. That’s two thousand dollars in three years, in the worst cost of living crisis of my life.
This is madness and I don’t see anyone who already owns a PlayStation 5 buying a PS5 Pro. I know I won’t and not just because it’s too expensive, but because it’s so unnecessary and such a drain on money. There is absolutely no need, especially if the main advantage is 8K.
I’m sure modders are happy with the Project Q on Android, but I can’t imagine anyone else caring. Paying £200 or more to run PlayStation 5 games remotely isn’t something I care about and it seems like such an unnecessary thing to focus on at the moment. I mean, I won’t buy the PS5 Pro but I’ll be negative buying the Project Q. I don’t even think I’d use it if I got it for free.
The PS5 Pro may just be a (believable) rumor, but Project Q was released this year. For what? Who wants it and who can afford it? I’d be curious to hear from anyone in the inbox who was excited about this.
I must have been so middle of the road but I just finished Final Fantasy 16 and I think it was pretty good. It’s not my favorite of the series but far from being the worst. I thought the attempt to be more western was generally successful and if they hadn’t had such a thing for Game Of Thrones specifically, I think it would have been even better.
What struck me though was how Square Enix still doesn’t commit to a proper open-world environment. They came very close with Final Fantasy 14 and all the games from the start, but there are still a lot of linear sections and the story is still stuck every time. I think it’s a bit of a Japanese thing, which maybe their fans insist, but to me it’s getting more and more old-fashioned.
I think with their art style and graphics, there’s no danger of it just becoming a Skyrim clone, or whatever, but they seem very nervous about taking that extra step. I think that would be a lot more groundbreaking than whether combat was turn-based or not.
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So, in anticipation of the next Starfield, I recently purchased an Xbox Series X.
Having not owned an Xbox in a while, I thought I’d take a look at the current sale to find something that would help me out.
Couldn’t believe it when I saw Jade Empire at just £3 purchase. I thought it would work brilliantly for the next two weeks, until Starfield. Anyway, enough chatter, it’s time to give out thousands of cups.
five star johnny
CG: An 18-year-old Xbox game is certainly an introduction to the new generation of consoles.
I didn’t really like the depths of Zelda: Hammeriron at first, but I’ve just spent the whole weekend exploring and barely got up in the air once. The whole thing is so weird and I can’t believe Nintendo has it completely black unless you do something to light it up yourself. Working your way between light roots and using bright flower seeds is so addictive and I love that there’s no grip at all.
It’s a true exploration of the genre that you don’t usually see in video games, not even in the overworld of Zelda. I’ve explored about two-thirds now and seeing everything light up so you can actually see everything is so satisfying. I think this finally beats Okami in terms of games that make you brighten the landscape with your progress. It’s amazing and even more so because most of it is optional – you don’t even have to go for the main story if you don’t want to.
Sad to learn of the death of John Gibson of Psygnosis fame. I can’t claim to recognize his name at first, but once I read about him I realized I had seen him in video game magazines of the time. People won’t realize it these days, but his work on Microcosm, and Sony’s subsequent interest in it, was a major turning point for the games industry, but since he’s neither American nor Japanese, his name is almost never mentioned and only the stuffiest of history books will remember him.
I salute his work, especially since he also directed Colony Wars, and hope that one day Sony learns to honor all of Psygnosis’ legacy. I’m sure there are plenty of their games that could be rebooted for modern times, but Sony doesn’t seem to even be trying WipEout these days. Although I guess between that and F-Zero, I guess the big two just don’t think futuristic racers sell out.
A new Colony Wars, G-Police or Alundra have great potential as far as I’m concerned and yet I’m not sure Sony even remembers these games even exist. Mind you, the same could be said for a lot of their franchises right now…
I was going to write to GameCentral about the game Thumper, to see if there was a free update from PlayStation 4 to 5? if you have the PlayStation 4 version, just launched the PlayStation 5 and there is currently an option to upgrade for £3.99. So with some credit remaining, I just received it.
When I do eventually get PlayStation VR2 it will be sitting there waiting (there were a lot of bills recently). I thought about buying the physical version limited edition games because I could always sell it if I decided I didn’t want it anymore.
I wish more PlayStation VR1 games had a free upgrade or a cheap upgrade option like Thumper, PlayStation VR1 games are not compatible with PlayStation VR2.
I have a lot of PlayStation VR1 games on sale.
You have been warned
I thought about this story Ubisoft removes profiles would be kind of an exaggeration, but it’s actually much worse than I thought. I know this won’t change anyone’s mind, because who wants to get up to change discs, but it should absolutely put everyone off digital downloads for life. This basically means that even if you’ve bought a hundred games, all you have to do is not log into your Ubisoft account for a year or two (I guess they don’t really say that) and then it’s all just taken away from you.
Their excuse for doing so is equally pathetic, citing EU rules when neither the UK nor the US participates anymore. I really don’t see any reason for Ubisoft to do this, other than an ultra cynical attempt to force you to double down.
Even I don’t think any editor is that sneaky, but whatever the reason, it’s terrible publicity and not something any other editor seems to do. I’m hoping for a retraction in the next few days, but for some reason I don’t think that’s happening. The dystopian future where we own nothing we buy is coming true and no one seems to care.
Inbox also works
Still hoping for Ash from Evil Dead in Mortal Kombat, he seems so much more obvious than all those other DLC characters they keep adding. I hope the reason it’s not there isn’t just because Bruce Campbell doesn’t want to do it.
Is anyone else increasingly bothered by online “gamers”. So Diablo 4 deserves 1.9% because of just one bad patch? These people are so angry all the time it’s really scary.
This week’s hot topic
This weekend’s inbox topic was suggested by reader Gannet, who asks what’s the most excited you’ve ever been about an upcoming new release?
While it’s been a summer games drought right now, it won’t be long before this year’s big fall games are upon us. But what did you expect the most from a new video game and how does the dream compare to reality?
Generally speaking, how much do you invest in pre-release hype and what do you think of the suggestion that it can sometimes be more entertaining than the games themselves?
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