Out This Month

Killzone: Shadow Fall

Shooting People: The Next Generation

In this month’s releases, we encounter new consoles, familiar themes, and old favorites.

By Drew Toal • November 5, 2013

Out This Month is a roundup of new games that are coming out this month.

Knack
PlayStation 4—November 15

Launch games are hit-or-miss. For every Super Mario 64, there’s a Pilotwings 64. (Choosing the former against my youthful contrarian inclinations still ranks as one of the better decisions of my life.) Only time will tell which mold Knack fits. The PlayStation 4 launch game tells the story of a little robot-type guy who can grow himself into a giant wrecking ball of a monster and the terrible humans who made the adorable bastard to further their own megalomaniacal ends. In a common theme across the first games available for this fall’s new consoles, even this nominally family-focused title involves war (albeit between humans and goblins). That brings us to…

Killzone: Shadow Fall
PlayStation 4—November 15

A few minutes into the dystopian terror porn that acts as Killzone: Shadow Fall’s trailer, it occurred to me that the game likely marks the moment when shooters become unabashed parodies of themselves. The idyllic futurescape (which actually appears to be a militaristic society, but whatever) is marred when an explosion rips through a building, leaving you all but dead. As one of the scary cyborg robot assassin guys makes their way over to finish you off, you get a sudden burst of energy and stick a knife into his brain. In no time, you’ve shaken off your concussion, severe burns, and almost certain PTSD to do what you do best—mow down the people responsible for this atrocity, thus guaranteeing the violent cycle will go on ad inifinitum. No one escapes your Killzone. Invite your friends.

Ryse: Son Of Rome
Xbox One—November 22

Ah yes, more war. Your family is dead, the barbarians are at the gates, and you’re wearing a metal skirt. Things don’t look too good, is all I’m saying. But that’s how they do in Rome.

Dead Rising 3
Xbox One—November 22

The city of Los Perdidos has been overrun with zombies. Your character, in a page straight out of the Evil Dead playbook, instinctively fashions himself a combination sledgehammer/power-saw murder-staff and gets to work. I don’t think I would fare quite as well in a similar predicament. Of all the Gameological staffers, I think young Matt Kodner would be the sole survivor. That plucky dude would, in no time, become the iPod-festooned leader in a WWE-themed tribe of feral children who will one day, when the sickness has past, rebuild humanity in Animal Crossing’s image.

Call Of Duty: Ghosts
PC, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Wii U, Xbox 360, Xbox One—November 5

It’s 2023, and the United States is no longer a superpower. The nation has been decimated inside and out by a shadowy organization known as “The Federation.” This group isn’t the friendly, non-interventionalist variety of Federation from the Star Trek program. No, it’s descended from the likes of Cobra, the Brotherhood Of Nod, Cerberus, HYDRA, the Sons Of Liberty, SPECTRE, or any other power-mad, well equipped insurgency you can think of. The United States counters not with economic sanctions or diplomatic overtures, but by deploying a handful of guys wearing scary masks who are really good at shooting bad guys.

XCOM: Enemy Within
PlayStation 3, Xbox 360—November 12

Speaking of shadowy organizations, XCOM: Enemy Within, the sort-of sequel but more like expansion to my favorite game of last year, introduces another new cabal to the list. In Enemy Within, a rogue group known as Exalt betrays humanity and sides with the alien menace. I haven’t seen a betrayal this egregious since Kent Brockman swore allegiance to our new alien overlords.

The Legend Of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
Nintendo 3DS—November 22

It has been a long time since I played a Zelda game, but as a present to myself for my 33rd birthday—because what 33-year-old doesn’t want, more than anything, a new game that is basically the same game they’ve played since they were 7—I decided to spring for the ritzy golden Triforce 3DS Zelda bundle. I’m sure my wife will be impressed.

Super Mario 3D World
Wii U—November 22

The name of this new Mario game is pretty confusing. It’s not actually in 3D, as in the “pop out of the screen and toward your face” type of 3D. And even if it were, why would we as a society still hype 3D like it’s some exciting new technology? Hondo was shot in 3D back in the ’50s. It might have ruled, but it’s not exactly a new frontier. That being said, Super Mario World was my favorite of the Marios, and OMG this one is 3D!

BioShock Infinite: Burial At Sea—Episode 1
PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360—November 12

Alternate realities collide when the characters from BioShock: Infinite find themselves cast as citizens of the sprawling underwater community of Rapture from the first BioShock game. Offering a glimpse into Rapture in the days before it was destroyed by its own cannibalistic capitalist ethos, I expect this to be a neat piece of fan service for longtime followers of the series and a timely reminder of what happens when you let rich assholes do whatever they please.

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232 Responses to “Shooting People: The Next Generation”

  1. Spacemonkey Mafia says:

    Ah… That’s the stuff. Gameological, you’re making this rough on me. You know I’ve been slinking around Kotaku the past few days, sweaty and shaking, getting this close to hitting the post button?
    I’ve had to start lying to my wife about what websites I visit. She still thinks I’m coming here! I’d be so ashamed if she ever figured out what dirty little game sites I’ve been slumming in.
    But anyways. I think it’s hilarious that COD is risking the very likely premise that the US will no longer be a superpower in ten years, but then punting and blaming it on some cartoonish terrorist cabal with a logo like a fist crushing a globe wrapped in a snake, pierced by a dagger.
    I suspect Bioshock’s premise of the downfall of civilization, minus the violently deformed jazz-hand mutants, is the more likely of the two.

    • The_Helmaroc_King says:

      Hey, psst, I hear you want some games? Puzzlers, runners, clickers, you name it, I got it. Meet me behind the bowling alley, first play’s just a sawbuck, man.

    • conditionals says:

      Kotaku is a great site with some really interesting and progressive contributors who would fit right into the Gameological way of things. However, floating deep beneath this site is an unspeakable terror. A disgusting, festering, decaying corpse mush made out of thousands of corrupted souls. Sometimes, when visiting the site of Kotaku, you can hear these souls crying out, each syllable punctuated with toxic gurgles of thick vomit. Bubbling, Quaker-oats coloured vomit that infects you and sucks you into the mush.

      Basically don’t read the comments section bro.

      • fieldafar says:

        Kotaku’s okay, especially my ‘local’ edition, merely because I prefer the site’s layout over the Gawker-infested stuff.

      • Crusty Old Dean says:

        The comments actually also used to be pretty decent (I mean, not Gameological-style quality, but still) before Nick Denton gutted his own community like two years ago.

        Still, sometimes I can’t help myself and read the ridiculous flame wars over like, the FFVII remake or something just for the lulz (all though that two-column thing they’ve got going on where another comment is constantly distracting you from the one you’re trying to read right next to it is so incredibly annoying).

        • conditionals says:

          The best comments on Kotaku are on any of the posts that mention gender or sexuality.

          They’re usually “but… you’re a woman? What are you doing on the internet when there are dishes in the kitchen? Are you… on one of those internet-enabled fridges? Because I don’t understand otherwise how you would be on the internet in the kitchen when you are meant to be fixing your family dinner”

          • MalePrivelege69

            Kotaku has been my homepage for years. But I think Totilo was right.

            It appears Kotaku is no longer worth visiting. When the readers are vocal of whats wrong with a blog and the writers refuse to listen, then its time to find a better site.

            Totilo, you may not miss us, and we care about this less than you do, because we dont know you personally and could give two shits if you end up in a soup line or having to pimp out P Hernandez to guys with a tranny fetish.

            I am positive Gawker media will miss all the ad revenue from the loss of our clicks due to Patricia Hernandez’s shit blogs.

        • CrabNaga says:

          I have an odd fascination with the comments section on the various Gawker network sites (Kotaku, Jezebel, etc.). All the comment communities are their target audience turned up to 11. Gawker is liberalism turned up to 11. Jezebel is feminism turned up to 11. Kotaku is gamer culture turned up to 11. I think it’s a consequence of the way their comments work, with entire commenters being hidden until somebody decides to make them seen. Then you get a small group of visible people that are the most agreeable or most contentious and it’s like an amplifying echo chamber.

      • DangerousWhelp

        Fucking commies.

        Arcades are awesome, there aren’t many left.

      • GaryX says:

        The Kotaku comments are bizarre. I have never figured out how to get out of the “gray” despite being promoted by authors dozens of times. What a weird comment system.

        • conditionals says:

          Ha yeah you’re totally right. Despite my hatespeech above, I do sometimes try to participate. And I’m always in the gray. Can’t seem to be helped.

      • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

        Truth. I really like the editorial voice of Kotaku. And I think all the writers are better than average to great.
        And while, as aggregate, the community there is far more literate and in-depth than pretty much any other gaming site I know of, the very fact that Kotaku actually engages in gaming culture in a progressive way, the comments that fosters brings down the average quality of the community way low.

    • Scott Mortensen says:

      I assure you, the US will still be a ‘superpower’ in 10 years. You don’t just fall from #1 to #32. China may eventually overcome us, what with the kid slaves and access to conflict minerals, but I think I’d still rather live here.

      • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

        I’ve fallen from 1st to 32nd tons of times.
        Two words: Paint Huffing.

      • SamPlays says:

        It’s 2013, and the US is no longer a superpower.

        • NakedSnake says:

          Yea really. Actually, I think the history books will trace the exact moment to the Russia-Georgia war of 2008. We obviously could/would do nothing to intervene. It was hilarious watching the newscasters speculating that we were “doing a lot behind the scenes” to end the conflict. In other words, our influence was invisible.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

            If “getting involved in other people’s shit” is the definition of superpower, then what does that make China?

            I mean, people are always talking about their coming ascendancy, but they are resolutely opposed to doing anything other than furthering their own goals, and they seem to have a much stricter definition of that than the U.S. ever did.

        • The_Helmaroc_King says:

          Breaking: “the US” is no longer a superpower; Marvel Comics downgrades Captain America to a really stand-up guy with a shield.

        • Sarapen says:

          There was a period in the 90s when the US was so dominant the term “hyperpower”was coined. In retrospect perhaps all that chest-beating kind of backfired.

          And the decline of the American Empire has been predicted since the 80s, it’s apparently been taking a while.

        • Roswulf says:

          Is the US the greatest economic power in the world? Yes, approximately doubling the nearest competitors GDP (not counting the EU, as the last five years have shown that the EU is staggeringly unlikely to act as a singular power in the near future).

          Is the US economically integrated into the rest of the world, so that the global economy is dependent on the US domestic economy. Good lord yes.

          Is the US the world’s dominant purveyor of art and culture? Yes, most dramatically in terms of its film industry.

          Is the US the most powerful country militarily in the world? Good lord yes.

          If those criteria are insufficient to describe a superpower, I’m not sure what countries other than the United States in the mid-1990s and the Mongol Empire at its height would qualify. Certainly not the 60s and 70s Soviet Union, and the whole point of the term superpower is to describe the cold war’s heavy hitters.

          • mizerock says:

            It’s not nearly as super to be part of the middle class in today’s America. But “not a superpower any more”? Clearly untrue.

          • SamPlays says:

            It’s a half-mocking reference (re: the 2023 timeline in CoD). If we’re having a serious conversation, yes, the US meets the criteria of “superpower”. The term was originally applied to the British Empire and subsequently to the US and USSR during the Cold War. The other half of the reference that isn’t mocking is the fact that China, India, Brazil, Qatar, UAE are emerging as “great powers”, which is a precursor to being a “superpower”. There was a time when the US was unshakable but that may change over the coming decades. Saying the US is the world’s dominant purveyor of “art” is dubious – certainly entertainment but I think the world is more equitable in terms of true art.

          • Scott Mortensen says:

            Well, our military did create the Internet. This allows Europeans to flaunt their flagrant nationalism whenever the subject turns to us as a people on blog message boards. We’re both the dominant purveyor of high art and lowbrow schlock, and both of those are clearly important to a globalized interconnected society.

    • HobbesMkii says:

      It’s the Mondays that are that are the hardest. No content? How am I supposed to start my week off right?

    • Professor_Cuntburglar says:

      All of the COD plots revolve around trying to find various fantastic ways for the US military to not be the bad guy in their wars.

  2. DJDeluxeSupreme says:

    Mmm, that looks entertaining.

  3. Enkidum says:

    Fuck polygons, colons are apparently where it’s at.

    • The Guilty Party says:

      But … my surgery … damnit.

    • Merve says:

      That’s why NTSF:SD:SUV:: has the most emotions.

    • Sarapen says:

      Remember last Friday when I said I wasn’t getting PS+? Immediately after I posted that comment I saw an online flyer for a store selling refurbished PS3s that were backwards compatible. I snapped one up the next day and am letting my brother take back his system. I had to transfer my Dave’s and you need PS+ for some of them. Long story short, I’m subscribed for the year and have gotten Amalur and some other free games because why not.

      Also, I kind of went nuts and bought a giant shit load of electronics from the tech store I went to. I’m pretty sure I single handedly reversed the recession with that buying spree.

      • Enkidum says:

        Heh, I actually thought about writing one more post convincing you to go that route and realized I was sounding like sony’s marketer.

        What the hell is a Dave?

        Get all the free games. Even if you don’t download them, “buy” them and buy the PS4 and the Vita games online at the PS Store and then if/when you do get one of those systems you’ll have a large library waiting for you.

        And later today we’ll be getting Dragon’s Dogma, and apparently this version makes it a Skyrim challenger, simply by removing one of the glaring flaws in the original (no fast travel). So, yeah, I think you’ll get full value for your 50 bucks right away, especially since you were talking about paying full price for either game.

        BTW apparently several of the designers for DD were on DMC as well, which explains why the combat system works so well.

        I cannot possibly afford to start playing DD yet, though, despite the fact that I think I’ll like it more than Amalur. Holy shit I wasted a lot of my life on that game already and I can’t deal with another equal time sink.

        • Sarapen says:

          Sorry, it’s supposed to be “saves” but my phone’s autocorrect thinks I was talking about transferring a man digitally. I’ll just leave it as is. Looking forward to all the free games over the coming year.

        • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

          I could never get too far into DD. It’s got a lot of good ideas, but the bland setting and repetitive structure (even with a Morrowind-style mark-and-recall fast travel system you will do a lot of back-tracking) got old for me. I think a sequel could dramatically improve it, however.

  4. DrZaloski says:

    Lots of manly men murdering other manly men (but evil) this month. Also we get a child, an aging Italian plumber who hopefully just got over his mid-life-crisis, and a some weird robot (who is probably going to be controlled by manly men).

    Well, at least I’ll be able to play as Peach in a pink cat suit. That should balance it out a bit.

    • Enkidum says:

      XCOM is actually pretty gender-neutral. But yeah, point taken.

      • indy2003 says:

        Welllll… kinda. In my experience with XCOM, at least, men seem to outnumber women roughly 3-to-1 (if not more). But yeah, it’s entirely possible that the most badass member of your squad could be a woman.

        • Enkidum says:

          Hmmm… maybe I wasn’t paying attention or maybe I just chose more women from the recruits as a sort of affirmative action thing.

        • Sarapen says:

          There’s a trophy for having an all female squad, which is evidently so unusual it needs to be recognized.

          • Chum Joely says:

            Yeah, I saw that and was baffled. I think the developers are doing their own little affirmative action thing there too, which is fine. Anyway there is absolutely no difference in soldiers’ ability according to their gender, so my squads were generally a pretty even mix. (Not including the SHIVs.)

          • The_Juggernaut_Bitch says:

            There is also a trophy for an all-male squad, too, I think? Brothers-In-Arms?

            My Flight of Valkyries achievement was hard-earned, because I had 2 rookies in the squad going into the mission, and that mission was chock-full of brutes and the freaking super-psychic ones.

            In my playthrough, I had a running competition between my main guy who had been with the team since the very first mission and this girl (who became my only viable Psyker) who joined the team in like, mission 8. I always imagined that there was this sort of friendly rivalry between the two of them, and as it turned out, one would save the other’s ass in a number of missions, so there was the sort of shared pile-ups of “I owe you one”s that each was permanently indebted to the other.

    • GhaleonQ says:

      May I instead recommend Nippon Ichi’s game known here as The Guided Fate Paradox? It’s the successor to Z.H.P., which means it’s a tactics role-playing game mixed with a dungeon crawler. That’s accessible depth.
      Moreover, it’s a harem game where the male is the beta the whole way through. You’re a god, but your angels are superior to you.
      And you kill, like, dog-men. That’s way different than manly men.

      • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

        I was reading a review of this and it sounded interesting. How grindy is it? Does it have an overcomplicated backstory or is it stand-alone?

        • GhaleonQ says:

          Absolute Hero Modeling Project sold well but didn’t become the tentpole they wanted it to be, so it’s totally unrelated in its mythos (except that all of their games take place in the same timeline). The gameplay is basically the same but with Phantom Brave mixed in, but they do EXCELLENT tutorials and it doesn’t get difficult until later. So, no knowledge is needed.

          It is not at all grind-focused, unlike Z.H.P. In Z.H.P., the conceit was that you were an action figure with numerous attachments. Here, you’re a god with numerous angels. So, whereas some tactics games require no strategy and some dungeon crawlers require all grinding and luck, the 2 genres balance each other out. You need to be creative, basically.

      • DrZaloski says:

        And that’ll balance out Call of Duty: Do– I mean Ghosts! The video game market equilibrium has been saved!

        The fact it’s made by Nippon Ichi already warrants at least a quick look-over.

    • Girard says:

      It’s a sad day for video games when ‘balance’ comes by simply covering both sides of the gender normativity coin. Call me when Mario can wear a pink cat suit!

      • SamPlays says:

        It will be a glorious day for video games when developers start interpreting the euphemism “chicks with dicks” (read: females who shoot guns) on a much more literal level.

        • GaryX says:

          So when they make Tumblr the Video Game?

          “Press A to Check Your Privilege.”

        • Girard says:

          Wait…that’s a euphemism for that? Why would you use a more vulgar term (invoking the pornographic image of someone’s genitals) as a euphemism for a less vulgar term (invoking the for-some-reason-more-acceptable image of a person shooting a gun)?

          • SamPlays says:

            Of all people, I’m surprised you would consider the image of human genitalia to be “pornographic”. Check your privileges, Paraclete Pizza. Check your privileges. And yes, guns have long been considered a phallic symbol.

          • Girard says:

            Yeah, of course they’re a phallic symbol, but that doesn’t mean calling women with guns ‘chicks with dicks’ makes sense, nor does it make sense that that phrase would be a euphemism.

            It would be like saying “Chick with her pussy out” is a euphemism for a woman holding a flower. Just because flowers are a vaginal symbol doesn’t make that phrase make any sense.

            Can you point to any example where that phrase has been used to describe women with guns. Like, ever?

          • SamPlays says:

            The example that sticks out to me is from Jackie Brown when Ordell and Louis are watching the ridiculous video of girls in bikinis shooting all type of machine guns, shotguns, semi-auto handguns, etc. It was literally called “Chicks Who Love Guns” – the syntax on display only requires taking a mere baby-step towards the phrase “chicks with dicks”, which, in today’s complicated world, now has the capability of conveying two very different meanings. The fact that many video games “balance” gender representation by simply inserting female characters into traditionally male roles (i.e., shooting, killing and maiming everything in sight) offers the same implied analogy: females (typically bosomy, thin “chicks”) who are literally attached to a long-recognized symbol of a penis. Why you wouldn’t accept the play on words is beyond me but I guess things can’t exist or make sense unless someone other than myself said it first (Note: I’m not claiming to be the first person to ever consider the relationship between females shooting guns and the phrase “chicks with dicks”). Anyways, it was a comment made in jest directed at game developers; it’s unlikely that mainstream games would ever highlight intersexed characters as a regular part of the environment. I also apologize if you felt like your intelligence was being insulted or challenged (“duh” kinda gives it away). Perhaps my error was in referring to “chicks with dicks” as a euphemism – it’s technically a dysphemism, so my bad.

          • Girard says:

            Someone needn’t have said something before you for it to have merit, but when you say “the euphemism ‘chicks with dicks'” you are framing it as a common, widely known turn of phrase, and not just something you’re trying out. It’s like they always say: The first one to the phrase coining party is always the one who has to stir the egg salad.

            See how little that last bit made sense? It was because I was referring to some nonsense I just made up as if it were a widely-used phrase.

            All of that is beside the main point that, though, for something to make sense it (again) doesn’t require it to have been said by another person than you. BUT it does require that the phrase actually made sense. The phrase you cite makes about as much sense as the phrase I used to describe a woman holding a flower – which is none. Zero sense.

          • SamPlays says:

            The fact of the matter is that a few intelligent friends with varied senses of humour can see the connection between the words and images I’ve referenced but it’s cool if you want to be stubborn, this being the Internet and all. Italicizing the word “the” only demonstrates that you’re trying to introduce arguments that should have been rendered moot when I apologized for the improper use of the word “euphemism”. You’ve already acknowledged that “chicks with dicks” is a widely-known phrase. The fact that I applied lexical semantics (i.e., women with guns is analogous to “chicks with dicks” because we both agree that chicks refer to women and guns are a metaphor for dicks) to bring a different meaning to a salty phrase shouldn’t be difficult. I’m fine if you don’t want to get it (benefit of the doubt on this because I know you understand semantics, analogies, metaphors and jokes) but the argument you’re perpetuating at this point is the only thing that doesn’t make any sense. We can not jive on this particular issue and still be friendly.

          • Girard says:

            Chicks with dicks is a widely-known phrase, but it is not a widely-used eu- or dys-phemism, and it is not a widely-used phrase in the sense that you are using it (read: females who use guns). Even if you had said “the dysphemism,” you would have misspoke.

            You imply that the phrase will soon be interpreted on a more literal level – when, in fact, that is the only way that phrase is ever interpreted, and it is never interpreted the figurative way you imply is common.

            I’m not being stubborn – I fucking love abstruse wordplay – but the connection being made is barely there. And I wasn’t being argumentative in my comment – your statement implied that there was this rich lexical vein of metaphoric usage of that phrase, and I was curious about it because I had never heard it that way. Only when it turned out that there was no such vein and your ‘joke’/comment/whatever didn’t really have the context or foundation to work, did your kind of invective, defensive response – accusing me of prudery for pointing out that your use of a porn genre term was a porn genre term, patronizingly pointing out that a gun was a phallic symbol (as if that had anything to do with your use of it as a metaphor) – make sense.

            I’m trying to think of a way to phrase the joke that doesn’t require as many tenuous semantic leaps. Maybe: “It will be a glorious day for games when developers stop dancing around the real desires behind producing endless games involving sexy women waving around powerful, priapic, cylindrical firearms, and just start making futanari games.” That feels belabored, too, though.

          • SamPlays says:

            Let’s assume I discussed the portrayal of women in video games with a group of people who are interested in the topic. I talked about gender roles, institutionalized violence, “hallucinations” of masculinity, gender schema, etc. (Lets also assume those details are trivial at this point). When I discussed the iconography of “female bodies” paired with “oversized guns”, I closed with a vaguely humorous one-liner along the lines of “It brings new meaning to the phrase ‘chicks with dicks’.” At a later point in time and in a different context, I used this new slang in reference to the original topic of interest (alluded to in your comment about “balance” and “gender normativity”). In this new context, I made an elliptical remark that it would be funny if game developers took this new slang (“chicks with dicks” meaning women with guns) on a literal level (the literal level meaning portrayals of intersexed individuals).

            I appreciate your confusion and I’ve explained the origin, context and metaphorical meaning accordingly. However, your insistence that the usage makes “zero sense” is a dubious claim when pretty much everyone else involved in the prior discussion is able to understand the wordplay. Furthermore, I find it intellectually narrow-minded to assert that a literal interpretation of “chicks with dicks” (or any phrase for that matter) is the “only way that phrase is ever interpreted” and that it is “never interpreted” in a figurative way. Sir, you are clearly and plainly wrong in these statements because my anecdote proves otherwise – somehow a group of people managed to interpret the phrase figuratively in a way that made sense in the context of the discussion that occurred. It comes across as foolish and egotistical to be so absolute in your claims about the meaning and interpretation of words especially when there’s evidence that contradicts your claims. Furthermore, I’ve never said or implied the figurative interpretation was widely-accepted or commonly used – those are your own words to support your own argument. I can’t help it if you’re not involved in my personal discussions that happen outside of the Internet. Also, “chicks with dicks” is a dysphemism because it’s an impolite way to refer to intersexed individuals.

          • Girard says:

            So you made an off-color, inside joke that invokes a kind of offensive slur, and decided to share it on the internet devoid of any of the context that would make it make sense. That seems like a not very good idea if your intent in saying things is primarily to communicate, rather that to make yourself chuckle.

          • Gravy Robber says:

            Jesus Christ, man.

          • SamPlays says:

            Notwithstanding any assumptions about intent or the broader Internet audience for Gameological and/or myself, your first sentence about sums it up.

          • Girard says:

            Thanks for the explication – things make sense now. Sorry for coming across as an internet asshole about it. I like your comments here, which is part of why I felt kind of frustrated that I couldn’t understand that one.

          • SamPlays says:

            No worries, Girard. Your comments are a staple on this site and you seem to be held in high regard by many others, which is the only reason I was taking the time to parse out an argument with “an internet asshole”. I’m really glad we found some resolution – by Internet standards, that is a rarity. The fact that it was about an off-color remark is kind of embarrassing but, hey, at least it’s something we can laugh about later. Take care and we’ll always have “chicks with dicks”.

      • UserGoogol says:

        It’s not like a yellow cat suit is so manly in comparison. There’s a lot of gender stereotyping in the Mario games, but that at least is just a matter of getting a clear color scheme to distinguish characters.

      • DrZaloski says:

        Considering that the video game industry is still more or less 50 years behind the rest of the world when it comes to gender politics, we gotta take what we can get.

        I guess we can play Mass Effect to scratch that “lesbian relationship with blue aliens” itch.

    • Carlton_Hungus says:

      The little goblin mish-mash from Knack seems relatively androgenous, although it’s likely a male goblin mish-mash I suppose.

  5. ItsTheShadsy says:

    YOU, you disparage Pilotwings 64 IN THIS HOUSE?

    • double_hawk says:

      I didn’t love it but wouldn’t call it a miss

    • Mookalakai says:

      The music from that game still serenades my nightmares.

    • Carlton_Hungus says:

      I still bust that one out on the emulator from time to time. Nothing like taking out Mecha-Hawk in Little USA or just birdmanning around Crescent Island.

    • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

      At the time it really impressed me, but I suspect that was because it was basically a tech demo for 3D graphics for people who hadn’t really experienced them yet.

    • Drew Toal says:

      I think for my part it was more commentary on how great Mario 64 was, rather than an indictment of Pilotwings.

      • Merve says:

        Aw, I thought you would have preferred Pilotwings. I’ve always imagined you as a mustache-twirling, monocle-wearing villain piloting an ornithopter.

        • Drew Toal says:

          That vision isn’t totally inaccurate. I really like the Snoopy flying games, and used to play Wings all the time on my Amiga.

  6. ItsTheShadsy says:

    The thing that makes me saddest/bored-est about that Killzone trailer is that it looks like something that would’ve been part of a PS1-era Final Fantasy melodrama. Really! I greatly enjoy sci-fi shooters, but it’d be so great to put these types of resources towards something else once in a while, where they don’t end up immediately bursting into flames or overrun with killer robots.

    • The Guilty Party says:

      You’re right, it looks exactly like the future/modern/whatever area of FF8.

    • Ah_good_the_sea says:

      I remember the massive hype around Killzone before it’s initial release on the PS2. It was a game changer, it was like no FPS that had come before it, it would change the way we thought about games and game narratives.

      How’s that working out for you guys?

      • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

        Killzone would be a great series if the mechanics were more fun. They’ve (wisely) embraced the campiness of the Helghast, but while they get to ride around on robotic panthers and wear kickass gas masks and use lightning guns and have jetpacks, you’re stuck using indistinguishable dull black assault rifles and doing the same ordinary shit you do in every other FPS. The guns and mechanics of Bulletstorm with the enemies of Killzone would be a great combination.

        • Ah_good_the_sea says:

          As a series, it’s always had trouble reconciling the sheer daftness of the ‘british space nazi’ Helghast with its focus on psuedo-realistic gunplay.

          Embrace the future kitsch I say. Instead of dropships and grenades, lets have space pterosaurs and gravity bombs.

      • WinterFritz says:

        I remember some article where the developer said they were aiming to build situations/maps based off of famous WWI/WWII battles but with future weaponry. I thought that was a need idea, but the execution was pretty poor. Medal of Honor: Frontline did a lot better job.

        Also, has there ever been a hybrid RTS/FPS where you can direct troops in an overarching battle map and then play as one of them to try and turn the tide in an area? I think that’d be cool.

        • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

          There’s that PC game Natural Selection 2, where two players act as commanders and play an RTS against each other, while other players serve as their troops and play an FPS. I’m not sure at all how it works though.

          The Battalion Wars games on Gamecube and Wii where similar, but much lighter. You controlled a little army and could play as a foot soldier, or a number of vehicles in a third person shooter while you issued commands to other units. I seem to recall it being kind of fun? Meh.

          • WinterFritz says:

            The Natural Selection game sound interesting, but I’d really prefer a single player type thing because, just like in Battlefield’s commander mode, I find people to be insufferable douches online (present company excepted of course). I dunno, maybe my idea is too grandiose or stupid. I just like the idea of controlling a big picture war while fighting in the engagements.

    • Zack Handlen says:

      “See, it’s like a this zone… but you _kill_ in it. You kill a lot.” “So it’s a, a Killzone, so to speak?” “Yes. Yes it is. But it’s not one of your happy-go-luck Killzones.” “Oh no.” “The shit has definitely gotten real in this particularly Killzone.” “Okay. Okay, I’m liking this.” “Right. It’s a dark Killzone. It’s a grim and gritty Killzone.” “Cool. Cool.” “It’s Killzone at dusk. A Killzone where the shadows aren’t just there–they _fall_.” “Oh my god.” “Yeah, I know. I’m not sure they’re ready for this, but we’re doing it. This Killzone belongs to the world!”

      I mean seriously. If you paid me to come up with a dumber title, I could not.

  7. caspiancomic says:

    Hey! Out This [Measurement of Time] is still kickin’! And whoa hey, PS4 and XBone games start dropping this month. It felt disturbing seeing so many Microsoft ads during The Walking Dead last week- it was a sort of bombastic reminder that the next generation really is upon us. Mind you, I tend to be a pretty late adapter with these sorts of things, so I probably won’t touch a next gen console for another four or five years, but hey. Still pretty wild.

    • The_Helmaroc_King says:

      I’m still waiting for the 2000’s edition of “Out this Millennium”; the novelty of movable type and sliced bread is starting to wear thin and I wanna see what I can expect for the next 987 years, give or take.

      Remember penicillin? Good times.

    • conditionals says:

      Thanks for the Gengar!

    • The Guilty Party says:

      I used to pick up consoles straight away. I had a ps2 when they were selling like hotcakes, had an Xbox when they were still new… definitely dropping off though. I never picked up a ps3, and my xbox 360 is basically a rock band machine.

      • Thirsty says:

        Sounds like you gave up on gaming. Either that or you have a gaming PC.

        • The Guilty Party says:

          Gaming PC. I think a fair part of the issue is that my friends that I used to couch-game with all live far away, so there’s no more NBA Street or Tekken tournaments. For solo play, my computer provides me with pretty much everything a console could, *and* it doesn’t hog up the tv so my wife can still watch stuff.

      • Girard says:

        I’ve always been a late adopter, but have increasingly been a non-adopter. Last gen, I just had a PC and a Wii, and I don’t really foresee picking up any of the upcoming/current consoles. Wii U might break me with Mario 3D World, though.

        • George_Liquor says:

          I’m a late-adopter too, ever since my first-gen PS2 started scratching the crap out of its disks. It really bugs me, though, that consoles tend to lose features in subsequent revisions, even as they gain reliability.

    • Sarapen says:

      I’m being all hipster and just bought a refurbished backwards compatible PS3. Time to dig Ace Combat 4 out of storage!

      Also, PS2 games must be idiotically cheap by now. I’ve forgotten the ones I used to salivate over, which ones do you peeps recommend? Off the top of my head, I’ve already played Shadow of the Colossus, God Hand, and Marvel: Ultimate Alliance.

      • CrabNaga says:

        Final Fantasy XII, all the Ratchet and Clank Games, SSX 3, Jak and Daxter, Metal Gear Solid 3.

        • Sarapen says:

          How is FF12 in comparison to FFX? Because I so disliked the characters and story in FFX. FFX-2 was even worse and I never finished it.

          As for SSX 3, I did play it at the time but thought Tricky was basically the pinnacle of the franchise. Metal Gear 3i just watched my brother play, it looked fun but I never got into it.

          • Crusty Old Dean says:

            FFXII is very well regarded compared to FFX. The voice work is excellent and the plot is very mature for a final fantasy game. There isn’t even a romance for chrissake!

            Personally don’t like the gameplay at all so I still prefer FFX (the CRACK of turn based battle systems).

          • CrabNaga says:

            Yeah, FFXII barely feels like a Final Fantasy game, in the best possible way. The battle system is post-modern as hell, because it literally lets you program what you want your characters to do in certain situations, rather than making you perform the same action manually over and over like in most other JRPGs.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

            To be even more clear, imagine the tactics system from Dragon Age: Origins (where you setup the AI routines of party members) and build the entire game out of that.

          • SamPlays says:

            Hands down, Tricky was indeed the pinnacle. It had the best trick system because it required a modicum of skill. (And the courses were stellar.) SSX 3 and subsequent titles seemed to grossly oversimplify things. The open-world concept never really took hold for me in the SSX games – I also preferred to pinball/arcade style over the “realism” of future games. Put it this way, I played (way, way, way) more hours of Tricky than all the other sequels combined.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

            A wildly different battle system that some people dislike, but overall a better plot. The protagonist is more annoying, though, since he’s basically inessential to the story that is told, to the point that I realized he wasn’t really the protagonist, just some guy the developers felt we had to spend time with for some reason. It’s weird.

            And I must be the only person to prefer X-2 to X. It was goofy but so likeable and had a great battle system. It’s the one I’m looking forward to the most in the HD release that’s coming up.

          • Dikachu says:

            FF XII is the only FF game I’ve actually enjoyed playing since FF VII.

            Also, fuck yeah Ratchet & Clank. The first two games are two of the best platformers ever made.

        • Ah_good_the_sea says:

          SSX 3 is a solid gold classic.

      • Ah_good_the_sea says:

        Some of my favourites have already been mentioned, but of the ones that haven’t I’d recommend Persona 4 and Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. If you intend to get some split screen multiplayer going, Timesplitters 2 and Soul Calibur 2 are great vs games and probably the best installments of their respective series.

        • Sarapen says:

          How is Persona as a franchise? Is there some overarching story or is it like Final Fantasy and it’s a new game each time with vague connections in theme and gameplay mechanics? Can I just jump into whatever part I want?

          Also, I’m not much for shooting games but Tekken is pretty much my go to for versus. I keep meaning to check out Soul Calibur since I remember playing Soul Edge in the arcades but I hear the later games aren’t all that.

          • PaganPoet says:

            Persona games are standalone games, and each entry can be played and fully understood without playing the other entries. There is, however, an overarching world and mythology, and sometimes cameos from characters in other games. The fighting game spin-off, Persona 4 Arena, for example, stands as a direct, canon sequel to both Persona 3 and Persona 4 and features characters from both.

          • Ah_good_the_sea says:

            Yeah, as PaganPoet said it’s closer to FF, not necessarily direct sequels but thematic and occasional narrative connections. I’d say Persona 4 is a good place to jump in (it was my first experience of the series) as it’s similar in gameplay to Persona 3 but a little more polished all round. It’s a little lighter in tone and less gothic than previous Persona games too, which makes it less intimidating for those new to the series.

            The more recent Soul Calibur games have been disappointing, but 2 (and to a lesser extent 3) deserve their reputations. I’m not normally very big on fighting games but I poured hours and hours into SC2 and I find it’s still a real crowd pleaser during parties. It has a really fluid movement system and intuitive controls which makes it easy to pick up and play with friends, but plenty of depth in the movesets too.

      • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

        Man, the collections (HD and otherwise) for PS3 make it an insane value at this point.

        Get the HD Shadow of the Colossus collection. You get ICO (which I’m not a huge fan of, to be honest) plus Shadow looks and runs better. Same with Okami HD (you can get it on PSN or import the disc from Japan). Let’s see, what else…the Sly Cooper games are great, and you can get the HD collection for cheap (3 games, woo!). The InFamous collection is made by the same company, Sucker Punch, and is basically Sly Cooper+superpowers. God of War collection is 5 (!) decent-or-better games. Kingdom Hearts 1.5 HD just came out, and Final Fantasy X HD is coming out soon. The Devil May Cry collection is two great action games and Devil May Cry 2.

        If you like flight games, the PS2 game Skygunner is one of my all-time favorites. An arcadey Star Fox type thing, but better, it’s an absolute delight and there’s little that makes me angrier than the fact that it never got a sequel or an HD re-release. Katamari Damacy and We Love Katamari should be known to you, but they deserve to be mentioned.

        PS1 games are even cheaper, either via Amazon or PSN. Legend of Mana tops my recommendations list (over everything else in this post, actually), but anything from Square for the PS1 is usually decent or better.

        • PaganPoet says:

          I wish they would release Brave Fencer Musashi for PS1 on PSN. I have fond memories of that game.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

            I’m surprised it’s not, actually! It seems like all of the beloved Square titles from those days are on PSN: Legend of Mana, Vagrant Story, Final Fantasy Tactics (curse them for not bringing the updated version to the PS3), Threads of Fate, Chrono Cross, and of course Final Fantasies VII-IX. I mean, isn’t the awful port of FFVI+Chrono Trigger on there? Seems like BFM should be a no brainer.

          • ZTO says:

            That game had pretty excellent music. I’m thinking of the Vampire thing battle in the chuch and the some of the final areas. I also seem to remember a ridiculously wacked out final hour. Good memories indeed.

          • Sarapen says:

            You can just stick your disc in the PS3 though, it handles PS1 games fine. I have a Chrono Cross save I’ve been poking at every now and then for the last year

        • Chewbacca Abercrombie says:

          Why does everyone hate Devil May Cry 2? I’m not saying it was great because I honestly don’t remember much about it, but I remember kind of liking it and I actually beat it. Devil May Cry 4 is the only other one in the series I’ve played and after three attempts so far, I’ve still only ever gotten about halfway through it.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

            Honestly, the reputation is so toxic I’ve still not played it. I’ve played 1 (first game I ever had for PS2), 3, and DmC. Since DmC was a lot better than its reputation–quite good, I’d say–I really need to give Devil May Cry 2 another shot.

            To answer your question, though, the major reasons are:

            1) Too easy
            2) Dante was serious and broody instead of an energetic jerk
            3) The art design wasn’t as interesting and varied as its predecessor

        • Thomas says:

          I still want an Onimusha HD collection.

      • Girard says:

        ICO is great. Silent Hill 2 is one of the best narrative games ever made.

        FF12 is pretty good – I’m burned out on JRPGs, but I still played it through. MegaMan X8 is actually a solid entry in that series if you like those games. If you like action RPGs and can tolerate Disney, the first Kingdom Hearts was pretty interesting. Katamari Damacy is a historically significant classic mainstream art game, and also very weird and fun. I’ve heard good things about Okami, especially if you like Zelda games. Prince of Persia is a super-solid 3D platformer, with some actually decent writing.

        • Sarapen says:

          Oh yeah, Disney meets Japanese video games, I forgot how much I wanted Kingdom Hearts back in the day. It’s going on the list. I’ve never actually played any Katamari, I suppose if it’s in the dollar bin I can fish it out.

    • SamPlays says:

      I have to admit the CoD: Ghosts ad, even though it was incredibly dumb, caught my attention for it’s entire duration. At least the franchise has become somewhat self-aware of its ridiculousness.

      • caspiancomic says:

        =O!

        I was curious about how they were going to fit a 100 hour game into a 2 hour film, but it looks like they’re going to do multiple films? I’m pretty hyped, it looks sharp.

        • PaganPoet says:

          Yeah, it looks like it. Although this means Aigis, Ken or Koromaru are not going to show up in this first movie!

          Also, it’s a little jarring to see the MC have dialogue. Other than screaming out the name of his currently equipped Persona, that is.

    • neodocT says:

      I’m definitely with you on the late adopter bandwagon. I almost got a 3DS this week when they were on sale on Amazon but then realized that, despite really wanting one, I have no time to actually play with it if I get it.

      Not to mention my looming Steam Library!

  8. conditionals says:

    This new generation will mark the first time in the Mircosoft/Sony/Nintendo era that I’m not going to purchase all 3 consoles. Just a PS4 and Wii U for me, thanks. At some point in your life you have to make a stand. Or SOMETHING.

    Anyway. Dead Rising 3 is the first exclusive that’s testing me a bit. The new game from the creators of Alan Wake is going to be even harder.

  9. feisto says:

    Oh, that’s right, you guys are getting the PS4 and full three months before we do. I’m just going to tell myself that it’s actually a tactical delay on the part of Sony to make sure they’ve fixed all the major bugs before they release it in Japan, their actual favorite market.

    Anyway, I played a bit of Knack at the Tokyo Game Show, and as adorable as it was, I was a bit disappointed by its linearity. I was hoping for a more explorable game world like the one in the first Jak and Daxter, but oh well.

    • Crusty Old Dean says:

      Knack is the only thing that might persuade me to get the PS4 before the Last Guardian comes out (ergo, let’s face it, maybe never). Sadly, I’m almost grateful to have been thrown a bone (with a none-shooter). Guess I’ll let the reviews decide…

      • indy2003 says:

        Yeah, Knack is pretty much the only launch title which I’m kinda-sorta excited about. I’m sure there will be a great library of PS4 titles at some point in the future, but I’m disappointed that they’re kicking things off with a bunch of bland-looking sequels.

  10. Merve says:

    Remember when video game trailers featured actual gameplay? Those were the days…

    I’m cautiously excited for Burial at Sea. While I’m not enamoured of Rapture as a setting – I actually much prefer Columbia – I think that a DLC expansion will have a perfect length for the kind of stories that Ken Levine is good at telling. The main thing that both the original BioShock and Infinite had in common was an interesting setup that fell apart in the final few hours of the narrative. In a tighter time frame, maybe Levine won’t feel compelled to extend the story beyond its natural stopping point.

    • Destroy Him My Robots says:

      There’s still the Nintendo trailers. Say what you will about them, but their “gameplay first” mentality always comes through, even in their promotional material.

      • beema says:

        Nintendo commercials make me cringe. They are full of these weird teen models feigning enthusiasm for whatever they are playing. They feel so dated and out of touch.

        • Merve says:

          Their commercials are so terrible, their games must be good!

        • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

          Eh, I am not like, big into trailers or anything but nintendo ones tend to focus on people playing together which is fine with me. At least it’s not another

          BWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAMP

          ONE MAN CAN SAVE THE WORLD AND WILL KILL EVERYONE

          BWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAMP

          adolescent power fantasy thing.

    • CrabNaga says:

      I have a feeling that unless it’s VERY clear that Burial at Sea is more of a “what if?” scenario that it has a very good chance of retroactively ruining the story of BioShock Infinite. But then again I tend to not have much faith in game writers (Metzen! How could you steal my innocence so?), so time will tell.

    • Professor_Cuntburglar says:

      That Killzone trailer seems pretty representative of the gameplay. I’d guess that watching the trailer is almost the exact same experience

  11. Jakerface says:

    Why do they speak with English accents in Ryse? Wouldn’t Italian accents be closer to Ancient Latin?

    • Swadian Knight says:

      The truth is you’d be so very far from english by the time your words started to sound even remotely like Latin that British accents start to seem like a decent compromise.

      • Girard says:

        They should just go full “Last Temptation of Christ” and give everyone Bronx accents because why the hell not?

        I guess, actually, Pilate had a British accent in that one, being played by Bowie and all. But you get the idea. Admit the artifice and make a daring choice (not likely to happen in a AAA game, I know).

  12. Thirsty says:

    I need Burial at Sea. In my veins. Right now.

    God I love those games.

  13. JokersNuts says:

    Oh man I watched that kill zone trailer and started cracking up when the player just gets up and starts blasting away like every other fps ever.

  14. snazzlenuts says:

    I am so stoked about Burial at Sea! I would love for it to be just a sleuthing, detective game, but I am sure that won’t be the case. Either way, very excited.

    • bostonrocco says:

      I feel the same way. I’d love to see the city while it’s full of life and not destroyed. They’ll eat my money either way.

    • JokersNuts says:

      I can’t wait to play that! Walking around Rapture and getting mixed up in a mystery involving Elizabeth’s alternate realities sounds so cool.

    • neodocT says:

      I’m excited about it, but I think I can wait until both episodes are out, then snatch it up for cheap.

      I’m not generally the greatest fan of episodic gaming, but I think I’ll give it a shot for the second season of The Walking Dead.

  15. Dikachu says:

    Frankly, I’ve never been less excited about a new generation of consoles. I don’t think it’s just because I’m older, I think it’s because it’s the first generation that doesn’t offer anything new.

    To whit: My first console was the old NES. Then came the SNES with its dramatically improved graphics and music. Then the N64 and PS1 with their (shitty but still new and different) 3D graphics. Then the PS2 with its dramatically improved 3D and ability to play DVDs and PS1 games (I got a GameCube too, but never did much with it). Then the PS3 came along… graphics were noticeably better than the PS2 but not quite as dramatically different as between the PS1 and PS2… but it played Blu-ray movies (and was the best and cheapest Blu-ray player for years)… plus it also played my PS2 and PS1 games! (I was lucky enough to get a first-gen PS3 before they discontinued the EE chip.)

    But, sticking with Sony (Xbox’s games never really appealed to me, and fuck Nintendo and their wacky stupid input devices, tired old games, and terrible graphics), what’s the point of the PS4? The phenomenon of diminishing returns is going to make the graphics only slightly better looking than the PS3, and it offers absolutely nothing new: no new movie format, no higher resolutions, and no motherfucking backward compatibility so I still need my PS3 around! Maybe, maybe if they’d made Rockstar wait with GTAV and/or Insomniac with Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus, but the fact that those top-tier games didn’t even need the PS4 to produce a great game kinda leaves me wondering what the fuck the point of a new console generation right now really is.

    • Carlton_Hungus says:

      Agreed, at least so far as this applies to buying the consoles at launch. The fact that there’s a ton more PS3 games coming out in 2014 that I’m excited for really doesn’t drive my urge to buy a PS4. (Aside: if the next gen consoles don’t come out the gate hot I wonder how long until Sony and Microsoft hasten the current gen’s retirement, a la Nintendo and the original Wii).

      I will be curious to see how the next-gen exclusives evolve in the next year or so. While not being a big graphical update over the current gen, my understanding is that the processing power can be used for better physics engines. And while I’m not terribly excited about more realistic blades of grass or leaves on trees, I could see that being used to create more realistic destructible environments which could lead to new interesting games.

    • Newton Gimmick says:

      I find that major innovation skips a generation, and that the intervening period is just an iterative improvement on what came before.

      *MAJOR SIMPLIFICATION ALERT*

      The Super NES had better graphics and larger games than the NES, but they played fundamentally similar. The PS (and N64) brought digital video, voice acting, and 3D games to home consoles. The PS2 brought better digital video, voice acting and 3D games. The Wii made motion control into a big thing, and the Wii U just added a touch screen, which Nintendo’s handhelds had been using since before the Wii came out.

      I greatly preferred the Super NES and the PS2 to their immediate predecessors. Developers had a better handle on the basics, and were able to innovate with confidence. Games felt more polished (in a good way.) If that’s all that the Piss4 and the Xbone bring to the table, I’ll be a happy person.

      • Dikachu says:

        Fair enough, but even the improvements this time seem less useful than ever before. I’m sure games will look pretty awesome on the PS4, especially once developers have gotten comfortable with it… but man, playing GTA V the last few weeks, I’m not sure how much better they really can be. That’s one beautiful game.

        If they’d at least included the option to buy a deluxe PS4 that played previous generation games, I’d be tempted. My PS3 still works fine, but it runs hot and loud and if it ever croaks I’ll have 3 dozen games I won’t ever be able to play.

        • SamPlays says:

          Yeah, the lack of backwards compatibility really diminishes the value of a new system. In retrospect, that is what made PS2 one of the great consoles of all time. I never owned a PS1 but I at least had access to the previous generation’s titles. It’s an incredible selling point and I can only assume it’s not a feature because of associated costs and technical/physical requirements that are not cost-effective. However, I refuse to repurchase games for the mere convenience of playing them on a new system. My fading memories will do just fine.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

            The PS3 is still backwards compatible with PS1 discs, and they’ve at least been putting a lot of older titles–PS1 and PS2–on the PSN store. While that may not be ideal if you already own the disc versions, at least they are aware that the back catalog should be a selling point and not something to toss out when a new machine is released.

          • SamPlays says:

            Full disclosure: My PS2 is hooked up in the basement and is used exclusively for workout videos. That said, if I was inclined to do so, I would prefer to pop a PS2 disc into my PS3 and play an emulated version. The back catalog on PSN is great but it doesn’t include a significant chunk of good titles from the PS2 era (I assume there are costs associated with emulation). Plus, it would only be an incentive if I had skipped out on buying a PS2. Like I said, I’m not interested in repurchasing games I’ve already played even though I could be interested in playing them again for old times sake.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

            Yeah, then the emulation isn’t a great point for you. But like I said, if you never owned a PS1, then you can get some of those titles for your PS3 no problem; Amazon still has a lot of them available on disc! You might be surprised at how well some of them hold up. Legend of Mana remains a unique experience that really hasn’t aged a day, while Chrono Cross, Vagrant Story, and Final Fantasy IX understood that style (and hand-painted backgrounds) can triumph over technical limitations.

          • Destroy Him My Robots says:

            It’s especially weird since PS+ will be required for multiplayer. But PS+ will also continue offering access to PS3 titles, I suppose. So the idea is that you should keep both hooked up for quite some time, then?

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

            Hmm, that’s true. PS+ is actually a great deal that provides a pretty good selection of games, but how are they going to address the fact that you can’t actually play the PS3 titles they offer if you only own a PS4?

    • Crusty Old Dean says:

      Thank goodness we don’t have to put up with a new movie format.

      But the backwards compatibility thing is actually a problem (though not a huge one obviously in the grand scheme of things). If the PS4 played PS3 games (or even just PSN digitals) I could see myself going “aww heck, why not” and spring for the machine early despite not having a huge interest in any of the games on the horizon (this is what I did with the Wii). But knowing that it will have to share precious shelf-space with its fat older brother is a definite turn-off.

      • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

        Man, the digitals should be a priority for them. If I could at least play digital PS3 games I would consider it a point in the PS4’s favor.

        Maybe they should consider a cheap PS3 adapter, like the thing they are toying with for the Vita, that could plug into a PS4 and let you play PS3 discs and downloads. That ain’t a great solution, but I know they really screwed themselves over with the six core thing.

      • neodocT says:

        I understand all the technical limitations in allowing backwards compatibility, but it does seem like a huge limitation on your library. I’m usually a late adopter anyway, but I definitely don’t see the point in upgrading to another system until there’s already a large library of games to choose from on the system.

        What’s the point in having a new system and then have it sitting there until all the games come out?

      • Dikachu says:

        There’s gotta be a new movie format in the works, since 2160p TVs are already starting to come out and Blu-rays don’t have the capacity to support the quadrupled resolution at movie-length. Frankly I don’t mind new formats coming out since they are backwards compatible (unlike the PSx line).

        • George_Liquor says:

          Considering Blu-Ray hasn’t exactly taken the world by storm, I don’t think another upcoming super-mega-HD format will make it or even DVD obsolete any time soon.

      • George_Liquor says:

        That’s the thing, my TV stand is cluttered with enough crap as it is. The fact that neither the Xbone or PS4 can fully replace even one of my existing consoles really limits their appeal to me, at least in the short term.

    • SamPlays says:

      Nope, it’s because you’re older. But I agree with all of your other comments vis-a-vis a lack of incentives to warrant upgrading. As always, I’ll wait 3-4 years to see how things pan out.

    • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

      One obvious advantage is that the PS3 architecture was a big hurdle towards multiplatform releases. Games often ran worse on the PS3 in large part because developers had to deal with an entirely different system than what was on the 360. In fact, this has been cited as the big reason why the PS4 won’t be backwards compatible with PS3 titles except through a streaming service.

      Another plus is that we’ll hopefully see better performance in titles. If you’ve ever played a PS2 HD update or an Assassin’s Creed on a really good PC, you’ll know that the last consoles, while capable of being very pretty, often had games that ran like shit. Now that we’re approaching a sort of plateau, maybe we’ll get a better balance between aesthetics and performance. My objective, had I been in charge of the PS4, would have been to have every 1st party title run at 60 FPS.

      Not saying that we should rush out and buy a console (I’m certainly not) but there are some possible benefits to be had.

      • Dikachu says:

        I have a few friends in the game design world and they’re pretty stoked that the PS4 will be a lot easier to develop for. I dunno if that’s going to translate to any incentive to the end-user, since they were making the non-exclusive games for the PS3 even when it was a pain in the ass.

        I’m sure I’ll eventually buy a PS4 because it’ll have the games I want to play, but for the first time ever I’ll probably wait for the 2nd or 3rd generation of the platform before I bother. It looks like for the first year or so they’ll be releasing a lot of games for both systems anyway.

        • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

          I dunno, I couldn’t push through Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood just because the poor performance was infuriating and I really wanted to be able to turn down some settings. I’m sure I’m in the minority, but it is an issue for me.

    • beema says:

      New consoles are just boxed media PC’s with locked-down operating systems. There’s really no point to them anymore.

  16. GaryX says:

    So, I bought a 3DS. Or, rather, I’m getting one for Christmas. I’ve never owned one or owned a DS. What games do you guys recommend checking out? I understand I now have a grossly large backlog.

    • Destroy Him My Robots says:

      It’s weird (and a bit sad), but in all honesty: If you need a good, quick rundown of what a platform has to offer, 4chan’s /v/ does pretty much the best job on the internet (mostly by virtue of not trying to stuff a platform’s entire library into a list of arbitrary size with boring consensus ranking).
      http://vsrecommendedgames.wikia.com/wiki/Nintendo_DS
      http://vsrecommendedgames.wikia.com/wiki/Nintendo_3DS

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

        I used that site when I was going through the DS back catalog, and a lot of the games they recommend kind of suck. If you see them praising story or writing or anything that will give you “feels” you can pretty much assume that whoever said that is an idiot.

        But yeah, those are pretty comprehensive afaik.

    • Christian O'Brien says:

      Download Pushmo if you like spacial reasoning puzzles.

    • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

      I was in the same boat as you earlier this year, and there are a ton of good titles. It really depends on what you like.

      If you like JRPGs, I highly recommend Pokemon X/Y, Shin Megami Tensei IV, and Chrono Trigger.

      For platformers, Donkey Kong Country Returns is fantastic (especially if you didn’t play it on the Wii) and Super Mario 3D Land isn’t bad, though not remotely as good as Galaxy.

      If you never played them before, the Game Boy Color Legend of Zeldas are my all-time favorite Zeldas. Make sure to play the Oracle games back-to-back (don’t play Link’s Awakening in between them).

      There are also some harder-to-describe titles that are well worth a look, including Luigi’s Mansion and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, while Starfox 64 3D is a wonderful update of a classic. If you like to draw/paint but aren’t very good, Art Academy is shockingly good, though I doubt that an experienced/skilled artist is going to be impressed.

      Hope that helps!

      • GaryX says:

        Pokemon X/Y is definitely on my radar, but my brother and I are buying each other a version of it for Christmas. Thanks for the recommendations though.

        I haven’t played the Color Zeldas and was debating on getting them for my Gameboy. I didn’t realize they were on the store. I’ll definitely spring for them.

        Would you rate 3D Land or DKCR higher in terms of platformers?

        • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

          Donkey Kong. It’s not even close.

          • GaryX says:

            Huh, really? I thought people were super in love with 3D Land.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

            The first half of the game is almost insultingly easy with extraordinarily tiny levels. The second half is suddenly and uncompromisingly difficult. Aside from that unengaging lack of a difficulty curve, it really feels like a bare-bones, scraped together title compared to other Mario games, especially the Galaxies (which are it’s closest comparison point).

            That’s not to say it’s bad, but playing it mostly made me want to fire up one of the Galaxies. Donkey Kong is a blast pretty much top to bottom (full disclosure, I have both the Wii version and the 3DS version).

          • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

            I’m loving the heck out of 3D Land. I played DKCR on the Wii and liked it a lot too, but I’d say go for 3D Land first.

    • Dikachu says:

      I accidentally left my DSi on a train last summer and I don’t really miss it. New Super Mario Bros. is a great iteration of the side-scrolling Mario titles, but the rest of the stuff I had for it was pretty underwhelming. Now I have an Android tablet (with attachable keyboard) and run emulators, which lets me play any NES, SNES, Gameboy, DS, PS1, etc. title I want. Much more worth it.

    • neodocT says:

      The DS is probably my favorite video game system ever, though I don’t have a 3DS yet.

      There’s a billion amazing titles on it, but right off the bat, at least, you should check out The Ace Attorney series, the Professor Layton series, The World Ends With You, all the Castlevanias, Elite Beat Agents and maybe WarioWare, as that is an awesome introduction to the capabilities of the DS.

    • Newton Gimmick says:

      The Phoenix Wright games are excellent (but not for everyone), and pretty cheap on Amazon these days.

  17. Sini_Star says:

    “dystopian terror porn”.

    Awesome. I am going to name my band now.

  18. Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

    Killzone is a shit series with the most uninteresting weapons I think I’ve ever seen in an FPS (outside of the lightning weapons that appeared for like fifteen minutes in Killzone 2). When does Infamous: Second Son come out? Sucker Punch gets basically no respect for their solid work, but that’s the system seller for me.

  19. Fluka says:

    So this week we can finally answer the question of whether we’re forced to shoot Dog in Call of Doggie?

    • Newton Gimmick says:

      That’s why it’s called “Call of Duty: Ghosts.” You’re forced to shoot it in the tutorial mission, and it haunts you for the rest of the game.

    • Fluka says:

      I checked the Call of Duty Wiki and couldn’t get an answer, but I did figure out that the dog, Riley, is “able to take down helicopters by jumping up when they fly close and biting the pilot.” Good doggie.

  20. indy2003 says:

    I realize I’m part of the problem here, but man, those Mario and Zelda games sure do look promising.

    • PaganPoet says:

      A Link to the Past is one of my favorite games of all time, but that trailer for A Link Between Worlds, well…my seat is still dry, so…

      • Newton Gimmick says:

        The idea of turning into a cave painting turns me off a bit. I’d like to be proven wrong, though, because I love the look and sound of that version of Hyrule.

    • Drinking_with_Skeletons says:

      While I like the idea of approaching dungeons in any order, Skyward Sword showed that Nintendo really has no interest in changes to the formula that are meaningful.

      Want to upgrade your items? Go nuts, but the game will never bother to make that appealing, let alone necessary. Agonizing over whether to bring an extra bomb bag? Don’t, because you can infinitely refill your bag with bomb plants! Want to come back at night to look for secrets? Don’t worry about it, the day/night cycle is only present in town and you can’t leave at night!

      I suspect that something in the game–I’ve heard tell of “item rental”–will completely undermine the new mechanics. I’d like to eat my words, though.

    • neodocT says:

      I’m a big Nintendo fanboy, so I sympathize. And, yes, I do feel ashamed of myself.

    • Simon21-lufc says:

      Why would you want to play those man? They’re so tired and generic, look at all those variations on “grey-brown fps 7: kill more things ghost alpha squad” you could be playing instead!

  21. Chum Joely says:

    Psyched for XCOM: Enemy Within on PS3, especially since I just finished Enemy Unknown yesterday. I gather that it’s basically an extension rather than a standalone game, but since it’s so huge, it goes over the limits of what Xbox LIVE and PSN will count as “downloadable content”, and so they will have to somehow sell Enemy Within bundled with Unknown as a sort of “bonus edition”.

    Not sure exactly how that will work for someone like me who already owns the digital version of Enemy Unknown, but I probably won’t mind paying for the new one… since I got Enemy Unknown for “free” on PS+ and a low $20 for the altogether worthy iPad version. Considering I’ve already had well over $20 worth of fun with it (according to my cash-to-fun slide rule), I won’t really lose out on the second purchase.

    • The_Helmaroc_King says:

      I really need to get back into XCOM at some point. I’ll probably start over from the beginning when I do, though; apparently, enemies scale with time instead of progression, which made my lackadaisical pace a bad idea in retrospect.

      Enemy Within, as per usual, will have to wait on my wishlist.

      • Chum Joely says:

        Highly recommended. The game is great and just keeps getting better up to the end. I had started a second playthrough on iPad over summer vacation, in parallel to my PS3 playthrough that I couldn’t bring with me to the cottage, but I’m also throwing that away now in order to be able to use ALL of my painfully earned tactical wisdom in the new playthrough.

        And this time I’ll even be stepping it up a notch and playing on Normal difficulty! Holy wow!

  22. beema says:

    I’ll admit to having a lot of fun with COD multiplayer in the past. I actually spent a good deal of time playing it in Black Ops. That was the last COD I’ve played. So even though it’s just tweaks on the same formula, I actually sort of want to play Ghosts for the multiplayer. But for some absurd reason, the PC version requires 6 gigs of ram (this despite much better looking games requiring less), which would mean I need a new computer, or at least new RAM, which I can’t afford.

    • Carlton_Hungus says:

      The story mode from all those FPS games is essentially worthless. It’s not even terribly helpful as a tutorial for multiplayer since playing deathmatch or CTF is nothing like the campaign or the AI.

      But multiplayer for all of those games is good competitive fun, as long as you can mute the mics of the random people your playing with. COD certainly has the biggest install base but I like the Killzone objectives mode along with the fact that it cycles through all playmodes on the same map. Haven’t played Battlefield but I’m sure it’s equally as fun with its own unique changes.

      The fact that they churn these out yearly seems like they’ve just full on adopted the Madden play-plan. Sure they use the big, over-the-top singleplayer setpieces in their commercials, but the sales are just driven by people who need the new yearly version for multiplayer.

    • ZTO says:

      You mention liking Black Ops multiplayer but I would caution that BOps was a Treyarch iteration of the series and they run their multiplayer quite differently. After MW2, the perk “Stopping Power” (+40% gun dmg) was discontinued. Infinity Ward opted to simply scale all of their weapons as if you had it on, while Treyarch opted to scale as if you did not. Long story short, this means that BOps and BOps 2 play much slower than MW2 and 3. In MW2 and 3 (especially 3), you very frequently die without even seeing your target. I suspect Ghost’s multiplayer will continue this trend. Just because you like one entry in the series doesn’t mean you will like another for this very reason.

      • beema says:

        I’m familiar with the different developers. For some reason I thought Ghosts was Treyarch.

        My main issue with the IW games is that they stopped having dedicated servers in MW2, which for me, makes multiplayer un-playable. I really don’t know how people put up with quick-match only systems. It’s agonizing.

        • ZTO says:

          Yes, I count that among the many reason I shy away from the IW iterations. That, and the fact that I’m nearly 2x as good in Treyarch versions than I am in IW, and being good is fun.

    • ComradePig says:

      Yeah, much as I kind of loathe the series’ second-hand impact on the wider gaming industry, I have found the mutliplayer consistently enjoyable, particularly when played with a group of friends. I was considering buying Ghosts for that purpose, but having neither 6GB of RAM nor Windows 7 it’s off the table.

      Which all seems more than a bit silly seeing as I can smoothly run much more demanding games like Metro: Last Light and Crysis Warhead with the settings maxed out or nearly so. I’ve certainly got some upgrades to make with OS and RAM don’t get me wrong, but in terms of this particular game it’s either incredibly poor optimization or Activision just trying to artificially prove the game’s ‘next-gen’ bonafides.

    • CrabNaga says:

      In my limited experience with the CoD series’ online multiplayer (usually playing it split-screen while drunk at a friend’s house), it’s fun in doses. My biggest complaint (which, I could be completely wrong) is that it seems keeping an eye on the radar is the number one thing you need to do to perform well. Usually I’ll fumble around and die a bunch until I remember that the radar exists, after which I’ll start doing much better. It just seems that that’s not such a great model for game design (although I noticed the same thing in deathmatches in other games, such as GTAV and RDR).

      • beema says:

        Depends on the server you are playing in. There’s “hardcore” mode that strips out the radar… I think.

  23. NakedSnake says:

    Drew, are you in the paid employ of Activision? Because I’m 200% more likely to buy COD: Ghosts now that I know that the enemies are spiritual brothers to “Cobra, the Brotherhood Of Nod, Cerberus, HYDRA, the Sons Of Liberty, SPECTRE”. That sounds awesome.

    Also, I’m confused. Is this COD part of the MW brand or the BO brand? And do they take place in the same universe? It seems like a merger.

  24. The_Juggernaut_Bitch says:

    Hmm… I am absolutely uninterested in any of these launch titles. Not when there are still releases for the current-gen, or the PC, that are far more interesting with new playstyles, coming out in the near future. Maybe if the PS4 is going to get a TLoU sequel.

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