The Morning Inbox congratulates Psyonix for abandoning loot boxes, as one reader thinks Resident Evil should give up first person.
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PLEASE NOTE: The main GameCentral team will be out all day at a press event, so there will be no Evening Inbox today. Normal service will resume tomorrow.
Making a list
The Switch Lite is out in a few weeks and I’ve already put down my pre-order to snag a Pokémon edition. But since I never owned the original model I haven’t got any games and I’m wondering what people would suggest for a first timer? I can’t get everything at once but it seems wrong not to get Zelda: Breath Of The Wild and Super Mario Odyssey straight away.
After that though it gets a little less obvious. Splatoon 2 seems to be winding down and Fire Emblem: Three Houses sounds a little disappointing. But really I wanted something else a bit out left field for my other main chance, so I was thinking Dragon Quest Builders 2 or maybe Octopath Traveler?
I’m really looking forward to it, as you would, and the new games that will come out afterwards. It’s a while since I’ve owned a Nintendo console and I’ve got a lot of catching up to do, which judging by the review scores is going to be a lot of fun.
GC: We’ll leave it to readers to make their suggestions but both those last two games have demos, so you might want to try them first.
I’m going to be very curious to see if Sony shows anything other than Death Stranding at Gamescom and would be very surprised if they do. I wouldn’t even put bets on them showing anything much more this whole year. I don’t think they really need to given the PlayStation 4 is still selling and there’s nothing else out this Christmas to push.
Seems to me they’re hoarding everything to have a blitz of games for the next gen, even if a lot of them are cross-generational games. Or are they just suddenly going to drop a The Last Of Us Part II release date trailer in one of their Nintendo Direct things? I can’t see it really, they’ll want a stage and a lot of build-up, which means either Tokyo Game Show (which doesn’t really seem the right venue for a Western game), PSX (which I don’t think is on this year), or The Game Awards (which is likely but right at the end of the year).
My guess is we won’t find out about dates for any of the games for a while yet, but here’s hoping I’m wrong.
Seeing the future
While I doubt the hardware will do anything particularly different what I am interested about in the next generation is seeing just how Microsoft is going to handle themselves. The Xbox One has been a disaster but they are better placed than anyone to now to prosper in the next gen, but what is that going to mean?
Are they going to start singing up exclusives like Sony are? It’s probably still going to take quite a while before Microsoft’s new first party games are ready so will they be making their own equivalents of deals like Death Stranding or will they just play the waiting game again? I’m tempted to think they will and that it will work out fine as long as Game Pass continues to be popular, which I see no reason it won’t be.
I also see no way that Sony doesn’t have both their own streaming service (using Microsoft tech) and their own Game Pass. They’ve been given plenty of advance warning of how important both are so I don’t see how they’re going to ignore them. And yet still I can’t visualise what the next gen’s going to be like, especially with Stadia and Nintendo in the mix as well. I hope that’s a good sign.
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Just finished Assassin’s Creed Odyssey and very much enjoyed it. I get the complaints about too much level grinding but I still enjoyed it all the way through and enough to probably tackle some of the DLC as well. But it got me thinking again about whether Ubisoft would ever bring back Prince Of Persia.
When Assassin’s Creed was dealing with periods in other parts of history like the Victorian London one and Revolutionary Paris, it felt like they could do a new one and it wouldn’t interfere. But when they go back and do older periods you can see how they’d be worried it’s too similar.
The only thing is Odyssey doesn’t have much platforming so if they double down on that and give it a lighter tone that might be the way to go? I love the original and Sands Of Time and it would be a shame if that was the end of it all.
GC: Jordan Mechner was still talking about making a new game a couple of months ago, although whether that was just wishful thinking we don’t know.
His name was Ethan
So who are we thinking is going to be the main character for Resident Evil 8? Now that they introduced Chris as a playable character in the DLC of Resident Evil 7 that kind of opens up the Pandora’s Box of all the others. Plus, despite really enjoying the game I have no idea what the main character is called or if you ever see what he looks like.
That’s not a failing of the game it’s just what happens when you have a first person game and I think for Resident Evil you lose a lot when the characters are just interchangeable space marine types. So in that sense I think there’s a big danger in keeping with first person given how good the facial animation got in Resident Evil 2.
A large part of Resi’s appeal is the personalities of the characters and when your main one is a blank slate I think that’s a problem. But we’ll see, if they up the other characters it could still work but I kind of miss controlling a badass instead of a nobody.
Don’t touch it
I’d like to comment on the whole Joy-Con drift fiasco.
I’m not saying it doesn’t exist, by no means, but I haven’t experienced this myself after plugging in many hours into several Switch games.
Now, I may be exempt from the rule as I bought my Switch around six months after the initial launch, which seems to have done me some justice perhaps, what with launch editions sometimes having teething problems. But, also, I don’t want to sound patronising to my fellow readers here, and I don’t know in this modern day and age if the scenario even exists, but there was a time when you were advised to leave analogue sticks in a neutral position when powering up your console to avoid ‘drifting’.
It was an easy mistake to make just by accidentally leaning on the stick as you began your game session to find your character seemingly become attracted to a certain direction like they had a mind of their own.
Just a thought, like I say I’m not sure if analogue sticks are prone to function like this anymore but if your drifting problem is intermittent perhaps you could keep this old school practice in mind.
So you recently reviewed Metal Wolf Chaos XD, a game about the American president using a giant robot battle suit to take back control of his country …
… but you didn’t use the sub-heading ‘Mech America Great Again’?
And if there’s ever a sequel set in Sunderland, then perhaps they could say ‘We mech ’em and we tech ’em’…
GC: It’d already been used a dozen times before we got the chance.
Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here
Hats off to Psyonix for getting rid of loot boxes. I’m going to be optimistic and hope they took them out because they knew they were bad and could earn almost as much money by just doing things fairly. This whole side of gaming is in such a weird situation at the moment, with some companies pulling out and some, like Activision, getting even more seedy about it than ever.
I ready this interesting article on Polygon about how tied up streamers are with loot boxes, and how some are paid by publishers to promote them and are secretly given better odds so it looks to everyone else like it’s easy to get a good item. That is of course completely illegal, even in America, but it seems to be rampant.
It will never cease to amaze me that some gamers (the sort that send death and rate threats to husband and wife indie developers, I imagine) inside that YouTubers and streamers are somehow the voice of the people and it’s the journalists that are the untrustworthy ones when the influencers have been caught being on the take again and again and I can’t recall a single incident of anything similar from a journalist.
I fear it’s a sign of the times though and while video games are obviously not important in the grand scale of things this same logic of only believing who and what you want to believe seems to go for everything. Which is very scary.
The game GNOG is free on PC on Epic Store from today. It can be played in VR or normal. I haven’t got VR for my PC but I have for my PlayStation 4 so will buying this game at some point as there was a good feature about how good GNOG is in Edge magazine.
Who did you play as in your first run at Fire Emblem: Three Houses? I’m going to start playing it at the weekend and I’m still not sure how I’m going to pick.
GC: We went for the Black Eagles.
This week’s Hot Topic
The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Cranston, who asks who’s your favourite video game villain?
No matter what game they’re from what bad guy do you love to hate the most? It can be anything from the main villain of the story to a cannon fodder grunt, but we want to know which one you have the strongest feelings about – whether it’s an enemy that makes an impression through the storyline or purely the gameplay.
What makes a memorable video game enemy and do they need a complex backstory or is it enough for them to just be a dangerous in-game foe?
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