Yoyoyo NAG-wizzles, and thanks for coming back, homies. I’ve spent the morning listening to rap music and getting in touch with my inner gangsta. Meanwhile, in news, Destiny has a big impact in the UK, Microsoft cheekily tries to dodge marketing sanctions, a Kickstarter project actually gets released while another one does the more popular trick of ceasing to exist. There’s all kinds of videos this week, with a few new gameplay trailers getting sprinkled in with the regular news – stuff like The Order 1886’s guns which are trying to kill you. There’s a lot of other stuff I’m too tired to write about, so click the read more button you lazy bugger.
Sony illustrated the importance of marketing last week, after quadrupling PS4 sales in the UK for the week due to the success of a Destiny-PS4 bundle.
But here’s the catch: Microsoft was prohibited from advertising Destiny for the Xbox One and 360, giving UK buyers the impression that it was a PS4 exclusive.
Somewhat hilariously, Microsoft countered by releasing a fake advertisement for a new perfume, “Destiny”. The perfume, of course, does not exist. The implication however is well intact. As you may suspect, it didn’t last long before getting pulled.
So, did Sony’s restrictions work? Certainly for selling PS4s, but the Xbox 360 version of Destiny far outstripped the PS3 in sales – UK gamers aren’t outsmarted quite so easily, clearly.
So, Rockstar thinks that their next-gen version of GTA V is so good, you’ll actually buy it even if you own an older version. Don’t believe? Here’s the pitch:
“The world is going to feel more rich; it’s going to be more vivid; it’s going to be more alive,” said Take Two president Karl Slatoff. “We think the value proposition will be very compelling.”
So, are you compelled?
Well, that’s it. Seriously. As far as tech and console business goes, I’m spent. Either Wesley’s covered it or it’s just not that interesting. Check out the sweet gaming news instead.
Wasteland 2 has finally dropped, one of 2013’s Kickstarter darlings has actually made it to release, after a highly successful crowdfunding campaign. A sequel to 1988’s Wasteland (which comes packaged along with the game), this one is a PC exclusive (ha!). You can get it right now on Steam, Linux and Mac. And no consoles. Nope, not one of them.
Here’s what you’ll be missing, according to the official blurb:
“Wasteland 2 brings to life an alternate future history where America is just beginning to stir from the radioactive aftermath of a deadly nuclear holocaust.
“Players must take command of an inexperienced squad of Desert Rangers – the only law left in the Arizona wastes – and set out across the treacherous landscape to help the last remaining remnants of humanity in their struggle for survival against hordes of bandits, criminals, mutants, cultists and worse – much worse.”
Oh and for extra jelly for the console owners, here’s a release trailer:
So one game that seems to be taking its sweet-ass time to get made is The Order 1886. This week Sony gives us a decent look at the game’s combat, and, more importantly, the weapons we can use in said combat.
Since this is 1886, they’ve gone with an extra dose of period realism too, listen to this:
“Some of these weapons were even purposely designed to feel somewhat dangerous not only to your target but to the user as well. We made sure they retained the feeling that they were still in their prototype stage and being field tested.
“This also reinforced something that was true of the era as often inventions and innovations would find themselves in use well before they were deemed safe to the public, very much unlike the stringent testing and safety regulations that are required today.”
After getting a 2014 release pushed back, the game is now slated to drop on February 20th next year. In the meantime, here’s a look at those antique, potentially unsafe weapons.
Hey, remember that they’re doing an Assassin’s Creed movie? Well, I say they’re doing it but they haven’t actually started shooting it yet.
Michael Fassbender is apparently taking on the leading role, and the film which was originally scheduled for an August 2015 release has now been pushed back to June 2016. Honestly, I won’t believe this thing will be released ever until I’m sitting in a theatre eating overpriced popcorn and watching it.
We’ve all seen the kinds of production hell that video game movies go through, and how poorly they turn out if they do actually make it through the entire process. Can Fassbender save this one? I guess we’ll see in a couple of years.
I’ve been pretty vocal about my scepticism (that may be downplaying it) about Kickstarter projects and Early Access models; mostly due to the fact that they’re generally sold an idea, rather than the potential to actually fulfil all the promises they make to backers.
I feel that recently, I’ve been vindicated somewhat as we see more and more of these kinds of games falling apart mid-development and essentially screwing over those who put their money into in the first place.
This week, we saw sci-fi author Neal Stephenson’s game Clang suffer a similar fate. The motion-controlled sword-fighting game raised an impressive $526,000 on Kickstarter, but has been suffering its way through development hell ever since.
According to Stephenson, he focused too much on historical accuracy and not enough on, you know, actually making a game. According to him, Clang’s demo “wasn’t very fun to play”. And them’s the breaks, a bookwriter gets on Kickstarter to make a game, but realises after taking everyone’s money that he actually doesn’t have a damned clue how to do that – because he’s never done it before.
There’s no real consequence for Stephenson (despite him saying he lost a chunk of his own money as well), and everyone who put money into this is simply out of pocket. That lack of responsibility on the owner of the project is an inherent flaw of crowdfunding, in my opinion. But I guess that’s the risk you take.
Last up we have a new title on the way, a successor-but-not-really-a-sequel to Sleeping Dogs, Triad Wars.
The game is apparently based on the Sleeping Dogs universe, while not necessarily narratively tied to that title. Developer United Front Games has kept pretty quiet about it until now, saying that we’ll b be getting a full reveal on Monday.
For now, I can tell you that it’s a “PC online game”. Not the most elaborate description, but I guess it means you’ll need a computer and an internet connection.
Techland is keeping themselves busy with game development, most of it involving hacking various things to death. They’ve gone with a similar feel for Hellraid, an FPS hack-n-slash that runs on the studio’s brand new Chrome 6 engine. Here’s a lengthy gameplay video, a full walkthrough of the first level.
Next up is Hideo Kojima’s weekly reminder that MGS V is still a game that exists, this time a 20 minute demo shown off at the Tokyo Game Show. It’s a jungle mission, which is like, completely different to a desert forest mission.
Not to be out done, Bloodborne had to top that with a 30 minute gameplay video, because why wait for a game to come out before you see all of it? The game launches in the Western World on February 6th.
Gearbox’s quirky, “hero shooter” Battleborn has flown a little under the radar with all the Destiny hype, but this week the studio released a 15-minute developer-narrated walkthrough and I must say, it looks pretty cool. Check it out:
Best of NAG
We’ll kick things off with this week’s podcast challenge, a new tradition whereby each week one of us is challenged to play something outside of our comfort zone and write about the experience. Matthew Fick put a twist on it last week, challenging Mark Del to play one his favourite games, Super Meat Boy, and rip it to shreds. Was Mark able to set aside his emotions? Disturbingly so. See the carnage here.
Speaking of the podcast, Episode 9 is out and you should totally listen to it. We legitimised things this week by having someone who people actually want to hear speak, Ben Myres, and then proceeded to speak over him with inappropriate sex jokes. Go figure.
Next up is my column for the week, a good old rant on Destiny (and others), and the problems that arise when publishers play it to safe with their games. You can read my angry ramblings right over here.
Last up, why not check out some fancy graphics cards you can’t afford? It’s the most depressing kind of window shopping, and I do it regularly. Have a good gander at the Nvidia’s new GTX980 and GTX970 right here.