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This Week In Gaming

flappy_bird

Welcome back NAGissians, have I got some scandal for you. Evil empire King.com has stooped to all new lows, the deaf composer who wasn’t deaf claims his hearing loss may have been “overstated”, but did Capcom know about it all along? Then, of course, there’s an all new next-gen resolution scandal; is the Xbox One really just not as capable as the PS4? The Flappy Bird developer also speaks out for the first time about why he really took his game down, and it’s probably not the reason you think. Scandal, drama, regular news and some videos and highlights, all after the jump.

Console news

When it comes to the next-gen consoles, resolution is a big deal. When the internet is full of rabid fans looking to cling to any detail which will put their chosen console on top, resolution points to hardware capabilities, the most important of all console wang-measuring.

Well it seems that there may be something to it. In an interview this week, Hideo Kojima had this to say of Metal Gear Solid V:

“I think, between the home consoles available in the domestic market, the PS4 is the best,” Kojima said. “It’s also excellent for graphics, being able to render 1080p at 60fps with room to spare.”

“Since it does it a little better than other hardware, the image quality of the PS4 is the most beautiful. It’s the closest to the photorealistic quality we are aiming at.”

So a big title with “photorealistic” graphics has no problem hitting the best quality with the best framerate. Pretty good, particularly when you contrast it with another piece of news from this week – Titanfall’s resolution on the Xbox One.

It’s reportedly rendering at a rather off 792p, information which was confirmed by Respawn community manager Abbie Heppe.

Heppe went on to say that Respawn are working on getting the game to a target 900p at 60 frames per second before release.

The question then, is should we read into MGS V finding “room to spare” at 1080p and 60fps on the PS4, while Titanfall struggles to find 900p and 60fps on the Xbox One.

I mean, not that any of us can tell the difference anyway.

I mean, not that any of us can tell the difference anyway.

It’s difficult to know without these games being developed for their respective rival consoles as well, but I suspect this does further confirm that the PS4 is packing a little more grunt under the hood.

EA has been trying desperately to ride the mobile gravy train ever since Zynga soared to success (and then crashed equally spectacularly), and thus appropriately believe that the mobile gaming industry does not pose a danger to consoles.

CFO Blake Jorgensen said at a conference this week that he actually believes the opposite – mobile gaming will grow the console audience.

“It’s bringing new people into the gaming business, but I don’t see a day when it takes over the console experience,” he said. “I think it will expand the console experience.”

It’s difficult to argue really; you can’t exactly play Skyrim or Battlefield 4 on your cellphone, leaving consoles in a comfortable spot to handle all the “core games” for the foreseeable future.

Sources: CVG. TitanfallBlog, CVG

Gaming News

Oh boy, remember that hilarious story from last week about the Resident Evil composer who turned out to have had someone ghostwriting his work for 15 years? The “Japanese Beethoven” who turned out not to actually be deaf.

Well, this week the man himself admitted that he may have “overstated” his hearing loss. This is what he had to say, in a statement to the New York Times, “It has recovered to the level where I can sometimes grasp words when someone speaks clearly and slowly close to my ears, though the sounds are still muffled and skewed.”

That’s a little different from what he heard last week from his ghostwriter, who said they had completely normal interactions to the point that he didn’t even realise the Japanese Beethoven was supposed to have hearing issues at all.

To make things just that little bit more exciting, allegations have been coming out of Japan that Capcom was fully aware of the situation – something which Capcom have now vehemently denied.

“We at Capcom were truly surprised by Samuragochi’s recent admission,” a Capcom spokesperson said. “However, as both soundtracks involved are no longer in circulation, we have no plans to take action of any kind.”

This has got to be one of the weirdest stories in the industry in years, and it seems like it’s not over yet.

I thought they killed all of these in Men in Black 2.

I thought they killed all of these in Men in Black 2.

If that wasn’t weird enough, the Flappy Bird saga (this noun used with the express permission of King.com) of the last couple of weeks has been all kinds of weird.

You’re probably sick to death of hearing about it, but the Vietnamese developer who was reportedly raking in $50,000/day in ad revenue has revealed in an interview with Forbes why he took the game off the market.

Flappy Bird was designed to play for a few minutes when you are relaxed”, Nguyen said. “But it happened to become an addictive product.

“I think it has become a problem. To solve that problem, it’s best to take down Flappy Bird. It’s gone forever.”

Yeeeeeah, okay. I think everyone’s Flappy Bird “addiction” would have worn off in about 2 weeks, much like it did with the ill-fated Draw Something.

Still, he doesn’t seem all that concerned with the already installed user base of like 60 million people, is my addiction not important then? Seeing as I’m still getting ads in my game I imagine the concerned developer isn’t too concerned about my addiction to not make a tidy profit from it.

Honestly, this is just weird.

Staying on the topic of mobile gaming, let’s talk about the infinitely evil King.com. The mobile developer has for a long time been accused of stealing ideas for their mobile games. Essentially they clone interesting apps, rebrand them and use their marketing budget and popularity to turn them into huge successes.

Now with their trademarking of the word “Candy”, King.com appears to be doing the impossibly shitty by actually attempting to “protect their IP” by removing the app they stole from the market.

In an open letter to King.com, developer of the remarkably similar to Candy Crush Saga app CandySwipe has accused King of “taking the food out of his family’s mouth”.

The important thing to note here is that CandySwipe, which honestly looks near-identical to Candy Crush Saga, was released two years before it.

Yeah... this doesn't look dodgy at ALL.

Yeah… this doesn’t look dodgy at ALL.

The developer, Albert Ransome, wrote, “Good for you, you win. I hope you’re happy taking the food out of my family’s mouth when CandySwipe clearly existed well before Candy Crush Saga.

“I have spent over three years working on this game as an independent app developer. I learned how to code on my own after my mother passed and CandySwipe was my first and most successful game; it’s my livelihood, and you are now attempting to take that away from me.”

The most sickening aspect of this is that they’ll get away with it.

In somewhat more cheerful news, Steam Early Access title Rust has reached a million sales. Originally designed to be a clone of DayZ, the game has since diverged into something more unique.

Featuring animal hunting and crafting mechanics, and with a recent patch removing zombies altogether, the game is now more Bear Grylls than Dawn of the Dead.

Sources: NYTimes, Eurogamer, Forbes, CVG

Videos

The Titanfall beta is kicking off, and those of us lucky enough to get a key (despite the apparent issues with South Africa) are unlikely to be seen or heard from for the next couple of weeks. For those of us less fortunate, however, we have new gameplay videos.

In a market where the Wii U is struggling to stay afloat, it’s kind of unbelievable to see a big name Wii U exclusive that doesn’t have Mario in it. Well despair not Wii U fans, Bayonetta 2 is coming sometime this year, and I’ve got a new teaser trailer for you.

I will literally never miss an opportunity to post another PvZ: Garden Warfare video, and this week isn’t an exception. So then, here’s a dolphin gun.

Lords of the Fallen looks badass. All you really need to know is that it takes inspiration from Dark Souls and Borderlands. If you’re somehow not already sold, watch this narrated gameplay video.

Best of NAG

Wesley Fick continues his totally excellent System Builder’s Guide this week, this time focusing on those of us with thicker wallets in the R11,500 to R16,500 range. I know when I’m looking to build a PC, the first thing I do is ask myself, what would Ironman do?

Nic Simmons brings us more hardware goodness this week, this time focusing on the yet-to-be-released Oculus Rift. The virtual reality headset is looking promising, and Nic will tell you exactly why you should be getting excited.

I wrote about something a tad less serious this week; a tell-all revealing piece on some of the NAG Online writers secret identities. That’s right, you may have been reading columns written by Spider-man.

Lastly we have the final instalment (maybe?) of the impromptu Wall of Shame series, where resident indie specialist Delano talks us through his own personal shame list – the games he’s never completed.

  • XCal1bur

    Yeah, I know I’m a Halo fan, but I’m a core gamer who owns Sony consoles. My problem is with this resolution war. I watched all the HD comparison videos and lo and behold I had to pause things and look extremely carefully to see the difference. But hey, everybody likes to bash things because of stats. My opinion is, if you didn’t know there was a resolution difference would you have picked it up in the first place? I know I wouldn’t have and I’m one of those gamers who love high quality in games. So please drop this resolution by stat thing and enjoy the fact that games on both consoles looks really really pretty and almost indistinguishable. I’m getting both as the times goes by.

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