Greetings NAGyots, and thanks for coming back for This Week In Gaming. This time around we have a good idea of what Oculus Rift will do to your wallet, a new Twitch.tv rule that targets a single game and Konami try to explain the future in the midst of their current disintegration. Then Molyneux’s studio attempts to “reboot” itself, the guys behind Amnesia have something new and terrifying coming soon, Respawn Entertainment talks E3 and Square Enix has a few things up their sleeve for the next couple of years. All that, more news, videos and highlights from the week than you can shake a bag of broken promises at, after the jump.
Oculus CEO Brendan Iribe said this week that an “Oculus experience” will cost around $1500. Don’t panic though – he’s including the cost of an appropriate PC as well.
Judging by the hardware needed for the Oculus, a PC that makes the cut is around $1,200 – which puts the retail for a Rift at around $300, probably around the R4K mark for us.
Would you be willing to pay that?
Remember Hatred? It was that pretty mediocre looking game that made waves just by being as offensively violent as possible.
Well it’s being released in a couple of days, and streaming megasite Twitch.tv has made a new rule – games with the dreaded Adults Only rating may not be streamed.
The AO rating is extremely rare, and generally considered a death sentence for sales, due to many stores refusing to stock games with that label.
Titles like GTA San Andreas were edited and then resubmitted to gain a more reasonable “Mature” rating.
Currently, only 26 games are rated AO, and almost all of them are basically interactive porn. And Manhunt 2. It’s rare that a game is actually violent enough to earn the rating, but Hatred of course fits the bill quite nicely.
There’s little doubt that Twitch’s new rule is aimed directly at Hatred, but if anything that may just add to the game’s mystique.
Konami is a mess at the moment. First there was the falling out with Hideo Kojima, then the cancellation of Silent Hills broke, and shortly after that we heard that the giant behind franchises like Metal Gear Solid was going to switch focus to mobile gaming.
Studio president Hideki Hayakawa spoke out this week, saying that the recent reports from the media “lacked the necessary context”.
“Konami will continue to embrace the challenge of creating entertainment content via different platforms,” he said. “Not only mobile platforms, but for home consoles, arcade units, and cards, to meet the changing needs of the times.”
So then, consoles aren’t going to be abandoned entirely it would seem. Still, that last bit is vague – Konami could very well be deciding that “the changing needs of the times” is that there’s more money in Candy Crush than Metal Gear (which, depressingly, there is).
Peter Molyneux’s studio 22Cans is apparently undergoing a kind of structure shuffle, which the company is calling a “reboot”.
Simon Phillips, whose been there since March, has been appointed CEO while Molyneux himself will be a full-time creative director. Which is great for him, as it means he can make promises and dictate impossible ideas without having to be the one who has to deliver on them.
Said Phillips, “It’s important for us, as a studio, to fully understand what it is we do best and what our role is in delivering our ideas. I want to ensure the lifeblood of the studio is as creative and dynamic as possible.”
No doubt this so-called “reboot” is due to all the public controversy surrounding the dev lately – the life-changing Curiosity prize was never delivered, and neither was the game the prize was based around, Godus. Of course, 22Cans started working on another game with Godus being tossed aside, frustrating Kickstarter backers who somehow haven’t come to expect this from Molyneux.
Speaking of small studios, ever heard of a studio called Frictional?
No? You probably have – they were responsible for dozens of soiled underpants and countless YouTube reaction videos with their indie horror hit, Amnesia: The Dark Descent.
Now the same people who breathed some life into actual video game horror (and no doubt inspired the gameplay of titles like Alien: Isolation) have announced a release date for their new project, Soma – September 22nd this year.
It’s been a lengthy production time too – development first began in 2010. The studio explained that the years were spent getting it just terrifying enough to make you kind of regret playing it.
“Getting this right has been extremely hard as it’s not something you can easily iterate on. Creating that disturbing sense of existential horror just right takes hours of setup. It also requires a lot of assets to be in place before it can be tested properly. So while other games can make several iterations a week on their foundational elements, it’s taken us roughly a year for each iteration.”
I can’t figure out whether I’m excited or petrified. In the meantime, check out these 12 minutes of gameplay.
E3 this year is promising a lot of pretty exciting reveals, but Respawn Entertainment’s Vince Zampella has said fans shouldn’t be holding their breath for Titanfall 2.
While the game is being worked on (and will likely be multi-platform this time), Zampella has said in a tweet that they’re “not showing anything at E3 this year”.
Zampella you may remember is one of the original guys at Infinity Ward back in the Call of Duty 4 days, who went on to form Respawn over at EA after being publicly sacked from Activision, which would end up resulting in multiple lawsuits from both parties.
Still, I consider the guy to be somewhat of a genius when it comes to innovative FPS titles, so I would have loved to have seen what they have planned next.
While we’re on the topic of new titles – Japanese publishing studio Square Enix have promised that they will be working on new IPs in the next couple of years, rather than making another Final Fantasy title nobody wanted.
President of the company Yosuke Matsuda has said these new IPs will be “experimental”, which is about the most terrifying word a Japanese game developer can use.
Let’s kick things off with Splatoon, and have this guy tell you why it’s more DotA than Quake 3.
Then it’s Witcher 3, with a pretty weird Easter Egg for those who are fans of terrible British TV shows (that’s right I said it, Doctor Who blows).
Now for something that’s actually scary, take a look at this trailer for Kholat, a new horror title that looks like it has some promise.
We’ll finish things off with WildStar, which has now gone free-to-play. No idea what WildStar is? That’s what the video’s for.
Best of NAG
Everyone loves a good conspiracy theory, and here’s one close to our hearts – why Half-Life 3 isn’t out yet. Rogan Louwrens explains.
Then we have Mr Fick’s System Builder’s Guide for those with more money than sense – the R20,000 to R30,000 range.
It’s a double dose of Rogan as he checks out Sunless Sea, a dark and twisted little roguelike with plenty of exploration.
Finally, there’s me, with more opinion nobody asked for. This time I’m telling you why all your favourite games actually suck.