In an age of Steam sales and PlayStation Plus it’s getting harder and harder for publishers to convince gamers to buy games brand new. One of they ways they try to do just that is through pre-order incentives. Buy the game new and you’ll get some plastic bauble, a map or an art book or, increasingly, some sort of digital extra for the game you’re purchasing. Do these matter to you?
Microsoft is pulling out all the stops now - the Xbox One was already a pretty cool system. Now, by losing the Kinect it is getting a serious boost. I will definitely need to get one when it launches locally, but are we also getting the console just in time for some really great games?
Sledgehammer Games, the studio making this year’s intriguing Call of Duty was started by former Dead Space developers Glen Schofield and Michael Condrey. For a while, they were working on a 3rd-person Call of Duty spinoff. That failed to happen, with the team from Sledgehammer working on Modern Warfare 3 instead. Sledgehammer has now, years later, revealed a little about the binned 3rd-person game.
When Microsoft first announced the Xbox One, it focused rather heavily on its plans for living room dominance. It wanted to get in on that original TV programming, muscling in on Netflix and Hulu’s territory. At the time, that went down like a rusty-nail sandwich as gamers wanted to hear about nothing but games. Microsoft is now talking up its original programming again.
The gaming backlog. We all have it, that pile of shame and neglect. Hell, I’ve got one that I’ve barely made a dent in since I started using Steam heavily a few years ago. In fact, I’ve only just started playing Company of Heroes, and I’ve had that game since THQ was alive. And it looks like I’m not the only person with some catching up to do.
We all know that gaming is big money, Call of Duty smashes the billion dollar mark hours after the game is released every year. Grand Theft Auto has already surpassed 30 million sales and the PS4 is flying off shelves at record breaking pace.
We’re in a new generation of console gaming, with both machines boasting solid performance upgrades and more of that social network integration that is all the buzz these days. One thing that neither console has though? Backwards compatibility for the previous generation. Sony has a streaming idea to bring some retro love to the PS4. But Microsoft has a better idea in the works.
There are thousands of games released every year, and I’m pretty sure we’ve all got backlogs of games that we keep meaning to start playing but never actually get around to. Instead, there are games we keep coming back to instead.
Oh good, the Australian Federal Government has realised that the way we classify games in Australia is really stupid and antiquated - so they’ve taken recommendations from the Interactive Games and Entertainment Association and the Australian Law Reform Commission to take steps to a more streamlined and considering approach.
Assassin’s Creed Unity is coming later this year, and like many new-gen franchises, will be shrugging off the shackles of last-gen’s graphical constraints. That doesn’t mean that Ubisoft won’t still be releasing games for the old consoles though.
As much as I love playing a new game, I also love going back a few years to get a little retro love. Dating your mom is besides the point, but this also applies to gaming. Unfortunately, I can’t jam Crash Bandicoot or Nuclear Strike on a PlayStation 4. Not right now that is, as plans are in place to not only bring those games to a new platform, but to throw in some HD love as well.