Sony yields on crossplay

This is big, for a long time Sony claimed they weren’t committing to crossplay for so many stupid reasons: “content quality”, “because PlayStation is the best place to play”, and “it’s not as easy as flipping a switch”. All of which people have torn down from the moment their PR dude spewed it. Sony pretending that content and community is why crossplay just isn’t an option is just foolish. How does crossplay affect a community when ‘Playstation is the best place to play’ if that’s true it shouldn’t matter that crossplay is enabled or not.

Yes, I’ll concede that crossplay isn’t as simple as a button they can push. What I won’t allow is the false pretense that crossplay is a deep-seated technical issue that needs a lot of attention. If that was the case, Fortnite wouldn’t have accidentally activated the feature the way they did last year. Again, I refuse to believe that this is some egregious labor that required the whole of Sony’s concentration.

I like that such a big move is finally being made. Fornite is the start, but who knows; next could be CoD, Battlefield, Destiny, Siege, really any of the powerhouse multiplayer games. This is a big step toward the gaming utopia we all want. Props to Sony for finally giving way to the inevitable future of gaming we’ve been heading toward since online gaming became a thing. But where there are props, I must give drops; and pretending this was a big deal and dragging this out is one of the more pathetic moves done by a company so far in the lead when compared to the other major players.

The future is bright lovelies, hopefully, big things lie ahead.

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Bait and Switch

Bait and Switch: “a sales tactic in which a customer is attracted by the advertisement of a low-priced item but is then encouraged to buy a higher-priced one.”

May I introduce to you, the new bait and switch. Lure you in with the shiny new console, you purchase said console, only for the mid-generation version to come two years later if that. To me, it seems like a really stupid business practice. Be it Sony or Microsoft who started the trend, I don’t care. Nintendo following suit is bad because now our big three have kind of committed themselves to this terrible idea. Why get everyone to buy your new console, only to be confused when the newer version doesn’t sell well. And it won’t sell well, damn-near everyone that would’ve bought the new Switch already has ya know THE ORIGINAL SWITCH.

Me? I’d announce the first console, remind everyone that there will be continual releases (Zelda, Mario, Smash, Splatoon, etc). However, in two/three years time the SwitchPro or SwitchX or what the fuck ever will come out and it will have xyz specs. Nintendo and the other guys really fuck themselves out of potential buyers when they do this. So many people I know are genuinely hoping this new and improved Switch isn’t a thing because they can’t get it. Why? Because they bought the first one like…idiots…? I mean sure with Microsoft and Sony setting the trend, we as consumers probably should’ve seen that coming. That doesn’t make it any less shitty.

“Why isn’t anyone buying our fancy new console?”

Because the Switch original has already saturated the fuck out of the market. People couldn’t stop buying Switches for a good while there. Yeah I might jump at the chance to buy this upgraded version but so would’ve a fuck-ton of people that now can’t.

Eh, it just doesn’t make sense to me.

Your favorite Pub/Dev is shady

I spend a lot of time dragging Publishers like EA, Activision, Ubisoft, and others. As warranted and deserved as it is, we can’t become too dreamy-eyed even in the cases of our favorite faces in gaming. So with this post, I wanted to take a rock to the stained glass windows of your favorite companies and some of mine. In the words of Run the Jewels “Kill your masters”.

Bethesda

Creation Club is one of the biggest issues beyond the more notorious faults of the infamous Bethesda. Creation Club is paid mods. I don’t care what Pete Hines says, when you pay money to modify the game it’s paid fucking mods dude. This is a direct encroachment on one of the best and most pure aspects of PC gaming. Modding turns games into different experiencing, fixes the bugs that a lot of their games ship with and never get fixed because it’s “part of the charm” or “just works”. Which brings me to my next point: Bethesda is the only studio in gaming that gets away with this every single time. Ubisoft put out AC Unity and was grilled for months after release about facial texture issues and whatnot. Everyone gets railed while Bethesda gets a pass every time. Also, can we talk about how one year ago from this E3 Bethesda was waving the single player flag as high and hard as they can? Only to bring out Fallout76 and it’s an online shared world game. I have no problem with doing things differently or moving in a different direction for a non-main title game. Perhaps maybe you should’ve held off on this for another year or two? Made it less of a surprise? I think a lot of fans will come around to this title but the sharp pivot is understandably jarring and Bethesda maybe should’ve anticipated that.  Alongside the mighty shitty practice of pre-ordering for a beta code….what the fuck kind of “money now” bullshit is that. That literally defeats the purpose of a beta for a lot of people. Getting to test out this wildly different experience is important to people that care about the franchise but just aren’t willing to pay for something they aren’t sure they’re going to enjoy. A reasoning that is perfectly understandable in my opinion. I love Bethesda but holy god do they get away with murder without so much as a strange look from the majority of people.

Microsoft

I’ll get the obvious issue of console exclusives out of the way. This is straight up disgraceful the way they do the loyal fans of Xbox. Sea of Thieves, State of Decay 2, Forza Motorsport 7, Halo Wars 2, and Cuphead. Remove Cuphead from that list and it’s a little pathetic especially considering some big name exclusives they had for the 360 (Saints Row, DoA4, Fable 2, Lost Odyssey, N3). The Xbox One’s initial reveal and release state were woefully tone deaf. A sad attempt to pander to gimmicks that shouldn’t be the focus of a console: motion sensors and television streamlining. Yes, they eventually corrected that mistake but to even consider such a poor decision was clearly a poor attempt to reach everyone but gamers. This entire generation was a bit of a misstep, unfortunately, outside of the impressively powerful Xbox One X there is next to nothing for Microsoft to actually boast about outside of the new console benchmark. What games have they contributed to their fanbase and loyal customers? This aspect isn’t so much shady as it is dumb. From the release of the One X with no games. To the games they backed so fervently only for them to flop hard. It’s clear they’re working on it given the recent studio acquisitions and the shift in focus some studios are going to be making. Why they had to forsake an entire generation for this to happen is simply beyond me.

Nintendo

Between their online service and the interesting terms/ conditions of said service. The shitty pre-orders they offer for said internet service which is one of the most insane requests of a company I’ve ever heard of. Can we talk about the vice grip on their content/IPs? Ever notice you don’t see much Nintendo content on YouTube? Seriously look up anything Nintendo and the new games many videos don’t feature unique gameplay. I’m not saying there aren’t any videos but it’s known that Nintendo can and will take down any video they see fit. Yes, it’s well within their rights as a company to do so. However, when Nintendo is doing it to fans, people who are trying to celebrate and appreciate what they’ve done, it comes across as wildly ungrateful. Especially when ya know, they wouldn’t be anything without the wildly enthusiastic customer base. Prime example: a YouTuber recreated the Bomb-omb Battlefield stage in Unity. It was nostalgic, beautiful, and kind of funny. What did Nintendo do? They order a DMC Takedown on the video. A harmless recreation video this wasn’t even any kind of playable game and wasn’t going to be. What was the point of this? Who benefits? They could’ve capitalized and got to work on a remake, tell me that wouldn’t sell. Instead, they insist on hurting fans for what boils down to free advertisement. I think Nintendo is so focused on being Nintendo that they’ve lost what it means to be…Nintendo. If that makes sense.

Sony

Sony has been hacked so many times I genuinely think Paul Blart runs their cyber security department. Sony needs to get their shit together in this area of their service ya know the cornerstone of the console in the modern era. Alongside that, Sony is very pressed on keeping their system and IP, and everything about it very isolated. Xbox and Nintendo are down for cross-play and Sony is sitting in the corner arms crossed not wanting to join in. When they know damn well that’s where all this is going anyway. Not to mention their strange aversion to modding on titles that lead to strangled communities in games like Skyrim and Fallout4. I’ve also already talked about PSNow v GamePass and how much better GamePass is despite it coming out years after PSNow. Yes this section is short but the problems are very big and potentially damaging to Sony and their reputation. They need to get on the ball or find themselves in Microsoft’s position come the next generation.

Take-Two Interactive (Rockstar and 2k)

TTI as a publisher is deceptively devious. They lay low and in the background unlike EA making sure everyone knows when a subsidiary works on a game that it’s also theirs. Take-Two owns two very prominent developers in the industry (2k and Rockstar) and they know it because at every turn they are monetizing them. GTA 5 is amazing, GTA online is a pay to win crapshoot. Planes costing an upwards of 20 to 40 real-world dollars. The in-game currency is difficult to earn in massive quantities required to pay such exuberant price tags. The shark cards were so well implemented it made GTA the most lucrative entertainment franchise of all time. They were so successful that games like NBA 2k and Red Dead Redemption 2 will feature them. Games that do not need them at all and only make the games a lifeless money hole. RDD2 isn’t out but the publisher already stated that monetization was going to be a focus on their games from here on out.

Resurrection Protocol

In the past couple of years, a lot of games have seemingly come back to life in the hopes of capturing a new audience and perhaps even reinventing themselves. Okami HD, RE4, Yakuza 3, Shadow of the Colossus,  and now RE2 are all “older” games that have recently gotten graphical and sometimes control face-lifts or are being revisited and renovated entirely. I have been kicking around the idea back and forth for the better part of a couple months now. RE2′s announcement really kicked me in the ass and made me iron out my thoughts despite it’s stated that this is a reimagining and less of a HD remaster.  I’m going to look at both sides and hopefully come to some kind of resolution to quell these annoying voices.

Fantastic, the younger generation needs some of these games. RE4 is often hailed as one of the best games of the console era and even of all time. The unfortunate truth is, most people have Xbox One’s and PS4′s. The older consoles become almost pointless to own unless you have the time and money to hunt all over your local area/ internet for the console and games. Okami and RE4 released for $20 which is decent enough if you ask me, I still think they could be a little cheaper but when I look at Shadow of the Colossus for $40 I can’t really complain.

On the other hand, this is fucked, these games should be damn near free if not free. A lot of these games are already owned by a lot of people, and on top of that Xbox has proven that backward compatibility is something that can be expanded upon in the lifetime of a console. So why not offer the free update for those that own the copies of said game; and for those that want the physical copy, are free to go out and buy one. It’s arguable that the fact that some of these games are so old that charging at all is unfair and consumer-negligent.

With full on remakes like RE2 coming, I’m sure there are so many more “reimaginations”, or whatever you’d like to call them, coming fairly soon. I just hope they remain tasteful and ambitious, not hollow and lazy. Expand on the ideas that were limited by the technology of the time, don’t just splash around in the puddle of the past. Turn that puddle into an ocean.

Characters I’d love to see in Smash

The nostalgia train is leaving the station!! I think if it’s done properly, Nintendo could totally milk this psychological phenomenon and make some incredible additions outside the first which is admittedly a fanboy pick.

– Goku: (Bandai Namco tweeted to Nintendo about the possibility) That fact alone validates me in my eyes haha

– Glover: Fucking do it Nintendo, this is not a fucking joke dammit. DO IT! That fucking ball would change to a bowling ball, a bomb, and the default would be magnificent for fast frenetic combat. Lose the ball, the Glove slows down and uses various popular gestures: peace sign as a taunt, finger gun, rock, paper, scissors. The possibilities are there and it’d be great to see that old glove find our hands again.

– Joanna Dark: Another agile, projectile heavy character from a hailed and beloved game. This is another relic from the golden age that should live on somehow. Since Rare has decided they’re gonna suck now, maybe outside of another solo game; why not give Ms. Dark a new home in the long famed fighter?

– Banjo Kazooie: You know it’d be cool, the tag team moves are endless, honestly how has this not been done?

– Buck Bumble: Another retro character, that would be amazing. Zippy and great projectile options, I think the bug could be another Pikachu type that is agile but vulnerable to heavy damage.

– Shadow: Yes, I understand he would be a Sonic clone. That said, Marth and Ike essentially are. Luigi parallels Mario,  Falco to Fox, Link and Toon. So yes I can see why Shadow would be another addition to something of a habit but he could take advantage of Chaos stones, utilize a different movement style, use a more aggressive combat focus. I see the potential I can’t really place why.