Our fifth podcast is now live! This edition includes the rumoured Xbox Scarlett!
Thoughts on comments from Nihon Falcom and reports on Xbox Scarlett being a streaming service! Mega Man X and Sonic Mania Plus! How many Nindies per week?!
Thoughts on comments from Nihon Falcom and reports on Xbox Scarlett being a streaming service! Mega Man X and Sonic Mania Plus! How many Nindies per week?!
Thoughts on Fortnite! Cross-Platform Play shenanigans and Mega Man 11 absolutely not coming to Europe at retail too! Everyone is Here in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate!
Plus, hear what we have been playing this week. Then our thoughts on E3 2018 and Sony does….what to your Epic Games account?!
Thoughts on Battlefield V vs Call of Duty! Pokemon Let’s Go and Mega Man 11 not coming to Europe at retail too!
Plus, hear what we have been playing this week. Then our thoughts on some pre-E3 reveals and the comments about…a new portable PlayStation?
With the release of Donkey Kong a week gone, how has the UK eShop chart settled this week? Are the regulars still high?
Numbers in brackets are previous positions based on: 06/04/2018 (Unless they haven’t moved) in the UK eShop
1: Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze (NEW) – £49.99
2: Stardew Valley – £10.99
3: Rocket League (Up from 4th) – £15.04
4: Timber Man Vs. (NEW) (10% OFF) (Up from 12th) – £1.61 (Usually £1.79)
5: Minecraft: Nintendo Switch Edition – £19.99
6: Football Manager Touch 2018 (Down from 3rd) – £29.99
7: Death Road To Canada (NEW) (20% OFF) – £9.59 (Usually £11.99)
8: Arcade Archives: Vs. Super Mario Bros. (Down from 7th) – £6.29
9: Sonic Mania – £15.99
10: Robonauts (Down from 6th) – £13.49
11: Mario Kart 8 Deluxe – £49.99
12: Raging Justice (NEW) (10% OFF) – £8.99 (Usually £9.99)
13: Celeste – £17.99
14: Bridge Constructor Portal (34% OFF) (Up from not charting!) – £8.90 (Usually £13.49)
15: Kirby Star Allies (Down from 14th) – £49.99
So all in all this has been a quiet week on the UK eShop. First note is that yes, Donkey Kong remains in the top spot as expected.
The usual top 4 of Rocket League, Football Manager, Stardew Valley and Minecraft all hold high positions with Arcade Archives maintain a mid chart position.
Death Road to Canada and Raging Justice both show strong openings no doubt helped by their launch discounts.
Kirby is about to drop from the charts again as Mario Kart holds it’s position as the quintessential Switch title. Bridge Constructor Portal makes a resurgence thanks to a discount.
Most interesting this week is Sonic Mania and Celeste maintaining their chart positions. These games appear to have long legs on the eShop.
That’s all for this week! A good showing both from indies while DK rules! See you next week where things will be very different with the launch of Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition! Happy Gaming!
So Capcom. Sometimes I do wonder if you don’t like money. I mean, Marvel Vs Capcom Infinite would have been a great deal and a big success if it was properly funded…
Street Fighter V could have been big if it was a finished game with balanced methods of unlocking content.
And what is this excuse regarding Nintendo Switch support?
According to a spokesperson for the company, it noted that it’s general procedure for third-party software developers to make re-releases for a new console within the first year of launch, mainly because there’s just not enough time to work on new titles within the timeframe.
Come on Capcom. Every has seen your early support for other systems. We know that’s BS.
Why not localise Monster Hunter XX? In your recent earnings report you listed it as a reason you did so well, along with Ultra Street Fighter 2! Oh, is it because of Monster Hunter World? Don’t worry, I’ll get to that.
A collection of Mega Man games came out on PS4, PC, Xbox One, and later, 3DS. The 3DS version sold the most units. Where is the second Collection at, Capcom? If not on 3DS then why not Switch? In fact data was found pointing to the 3DS version existing.
A dataminer named Greigamaster recently found some code that indicates a multiplayer battle mode for a supposed 3DS version. Additionally, code was found referring to saves and replays for an SD card, and the 3DS has its own directory file, too. As the source article points out, this either means that the game is coming to 3DS, was initially coming to 3DS before getting canned, or it’s completely unrelated to the collection at all and is just simply code belonging to another project by the same team.
What? Okami HD (Again.)? That did pretty well back on Wii. Why not make a Switch port? Easy money again right?
Capcom, I know for whatever reason, you don’t want to make money. I know that taking a game to it’s biggest market is alien to you. But come on. Someone there has to see the writing on the wall. There are markets, not even just Nintendo, that would do wonders for some of your games, and others that wouldn’t. And yet you do the opposite of the logical thing.
Now let’s talk about Monster Hunter World.
You want your game to reach a global audience right? Increased revenue. Okay, fair enough.
This game will obviously cost far more to produce than the 3DS entries. It will need to sell far more to make back that investment. But part of me thinks this is a very dangerous move. Sure it could boost the popularity of the franchise internationally….but that will be at a cost.
The game is coming to PS4, Xbox One and PC. But only on PS4 in Japan. 5 million potential sales right there, in the biggest market for the game. Compared to the 20+ million for 3DS, but of a fall. We know Nintendo Switch is eating away at that too, already past 2 million units, but that’s neither here nor there.
But Japan isn’t really into stationary consoles. They want portable experiences, it’s part of their culture and lifestyle. You’re potentially alienating the domestic market, and largest market, for a franchise you just invested more than ever into.
And let’s not get started on the Western situation. The series hit untold highs in the West on 3DS, and it is well documented the series sells best on portables, even back in the days of PSP/PS2. Is there any guarantee that the Western console markets will pick this up and that fans will migrate from 3DS/Switch where the fanbase grew?
No. Not at all.
This is a huge risk Capcom, I hope you understand that. Taking the game from it’s proven largest domestic market, and it’s largest Western market, spending far more money to do so therefore demanding more sales…all in the hope of a bigger audience.
I hope you appreciate how insane that sounds.
Look, if it works it works. But for a company so averse to doing the logical thing and making more money than they would otherwise, this feels like a huge risk, and if it fails…well you better start rethinking your strategy at long last. I don’t think this can go the way of Street Fighter V.
Sometimes controls can be weird. Or fun. Or intuitive. Sometimes they can be downright bad.
Now for reference when talking about “Controls” in this context I am referring strictly to the device in your hands that you use to move the player controlled object and interface with the game, not the actual movement of a character, as that’s an entirely different discussion.
So why do controls matter? Well it’s simple. If the way you are playing the game isn’t comfortable, then…well you won’t have as much fun, obviously. This is down to a few things, namely preference, necessity, and layout.
For instance with controller layouts, there are some that just end up with your hand like a pretzel, the immediate thought being Terraria on PS3. That is definitely a doable experience but is in no way optimal, given the game and it’s design is based around a keyboard layout.
For preference, let’s take aiming in a FPS or Third-Person Shooter. Using an analog stick for this, while doable, is miles from using a mouse or gyroscopic aiming. For note, in Splatoon I use gyro controls for aiming with the analog stick being reserved solely for minor movements on the x axis. Attempting to play something like DOOM (2016) on PS4, while certainly doable, feels slow and clunkier compared to a mouse or gyro. Most likely this is an issue with precision and how fast a mouse/your arm can move compared to an analog stick. Sure, sensitivity adjustment helps, but on an analog stick you lose the ability to stop precisely. You’ll aim in a direction pretty quickly, but stopping where you want is a hassle.
Another famous anecdote from across the web is that keyboard and mouse is “Superior”. Now, this is true: But it depends on the game. I can wholeheartedly say playing a 3D platformer with a keyboard is the definition of a nightmare, and actually crosses with something I’ll bring up on a personal level later. But something like ARMA III, you won’t play that in any way other than a keyboard, out of necessity.
And now we come to the personal anecdote, and I realise that most likely no one else will ever play this game in this way, but it works for me.
So I was gifted Overwatch on PC by a friend and after many months of just…well never booting it really, I finally gave it an honest go, keyboard and mouse. And I hated it. The main complaint I had is both personal and one I have stemming from consoles.
So my personal complaint is that keyboard and mouse is just uncomfortable for me. My right hand has injuries that make prolonged mouse use not fun and my left hand doesn’t mesh well to a keyboard for jumping between inputs on a moments notice given the sheer volume of keys.
The issue stemming from console gaming is actually that of the D-pad. See, WASD at the end of the day on most keyboards is basically a D-pad. The keys are digital, meaning they are either on or off. There are no precise movements like those gained with an analog stick (And Overwatch does in fact have this built in, just you can’t do it with most keyboards), and another huge problem is that Overwatch is a game in a 3D Space, that is based heavily around movement.
Now for the life of me, no matter what it is, I can’t stand the imprecision of digital movement in a 3D space. 2D is more bearable, but in 3D there is more precise movements to be made, due to the nature of the space. Further to that, using WASD is effectively using a D-pad (Only not in an exact + formation, which I admit is fun for muscle memory in 2D games!). You have what is ultimately 8 directions of movement, via 4 digital buttons. It’s a D-Pad in principle. And in Overwatch, as I started to play it, I found not only was I mis-clicking, but also suffering from awkward movement, and my hands were aching. This was a truly miserable experience.
So, with some Discord game development friends they suggested I try a controller. Now that would mean I have to aim with a stick, but we gave it a shot. Now I don’t own an Xbox branded controller anymore (Because of my hand issues that right analog stick is discomfort incarnate) so we went to my next best thing – My default PC controller: The Switch Pro Controller.
And It’s not supported by Overwatch (Figures, it’s a DInput controller not XInput) but we whipped out some keybinding software, and have it an honest go. Movement with an analog stick, despite still being digital at the end of the day, felt better due to how the analog moves compared to, again, 4 buttons in a 3D Space. So my movement grievances were solved! But then came the aiming.
Never map a mouse to an analog stick. Just don’t. That’s a sensitivity mess that just doesn’t work, as you map the free movement of mouse to a more limited stick.
So we ended up (And props to Nintendo for making Joy-Con individual controllers) a controller setup now dubbed “Controller and Mouse”. And my God, does it work.
So on the Joy-Con I mapped Jump to ZL, Ability 1 and 2 to ZR and Up, Ultimate to a click of the Stick, and reload to SL where my finger rests. On the mouse is just Fire and Ability 3/Alt Fire where applicable. This obviously requires reconfiguring based on which hero I use, but man. The free aim of the mouse and movement of the Joy-Con has opened this game up to me.
Is this ideal? Probably not. I’m sure Blizzard wants me using keyboard and mouse but again, if you aren’t comfortable in playing the game, you want to stop playing. I was determined to give Overwatch a go, and I did, and I really enjoy it. I don’t love it, but it’s fun.
And across the internet you can find people using special controllers, really kickass fighting game players who are blind, some who swear by fight sticks, and hell, you can even find Super Smash Bros. Melee players who use the Gamecube controller…upside down! That controller is still supported in the series to this day.
Controls are a huge factor of a game: The single most important if you ask me. If the game is unintuitive or uncomfortable to play, people will seek a work around where possible.
What do our readers think? Leave a comment down below with any games you had hard times controlling, or crazy control schemes you’ve seen, and as always, share the article and happy gaming! 🙂
Revealed January 12th at the Nintendo Switch Event in Japan, showcasing the game, new hub area and characters. Response was positive, with lingering suspicion that it wasn’t unique enough or much of an upgrade over the original from 2015.
Playable at Nintendo Switch events worldwide leading up to the launch of the console, where feedback was positive, ringing along the lines of “It’s definitely Splatoon”, albeit most focus was on the hardware.
Late March brought the Splatoon 2 Global Testfire, following the trend from the original in creating a stress test in the guise of a playable demo for a weekend. This led to feedback directly from a wider range of fans on weapons and presented a limited taste of the game. This was later followed immediately before launch with a Splatfest World Premiere demo, acting as another stress test and highlighting the unique community battles aspect of the franchise, immediately before launch.
The game was also highlighted in Nintendo Directs, first as a follow-up to a more general game showcase that focused heavily on ARMS, a new IP, and Splatoon 2, which was pushed as a duet of main events, highlighting the pulling power of the franchise.
There was later a full ARMS direct with a Splatoon 2 Story Mode teaser at the end, once again highlighting the two being marketed in tandem, and the promise of the game being used to push a new product.
Finally, a full Splatoon 2 direct aired showing the new hosts, story mode, weapons, update plans, Splatfest plans, and laying out the roadmap and what to expect over two years with the game, as well as new modes and features. This followed on from a large E3 showing highlighting the changes and promise of Splatoon 2 as a competitive spectator sport, with a live tournament of some of the best Squid Squads from around the globe.
Right up to and after launch, consistent TV spots were played worldwide, highlighting the game to the general consumer, along with other multiplayer titles for the summer.
Critically Splatoon 2 fared well. Most loved the game, albeit the lingering feeling of not being fresh enough stayed, both visually and in terms of gameplay, as well as some nagging aspects that could have been better. This general response is an interesting change on the original which said there wasn’t enough content at launch, but the game was a shock the genre needed, and felt addictive to play, holding enough quick-fire gameplay in its matches to warrant returning again and again.
With the content roadmap clearly laid out, critically the game had less focus on amount of content overall, but how much was new, however, in very few cases did that seem to detract from the game being fun, and a general air of don’t fix what isn’t broken surrounds the game.
In the eyes of fans, Splatoon 2 faced much of the same backlash. Visually similar, with the differences early on being visible only side by side. The feeling that it wasn’t worthy of being a sequel lingered right until launch, when new information was pumped out, showing the freshness of this new title in the now series.
Post-launch the feeling changed, and the game is generally loved, though some fans of the original who played considerable amounts of the game, seem to feel a bit of burn out. Criticism is still levelled at how the game handles aspects like matchmaking and stages, and a lack of wholly original content, but the experience has been received as fun and again, just like with critics, an air of don’t fix what isn’t broken.
Despite being on a system only a few months old at the time of launch, compared to its predecessor, with less total users to possible sell to on launch, Splatoon 2 trounced the original game sales in both the UK and Japan. This shocked many detractors who, like with Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, believed that being so soon after the original, who would buy it? This again stems from the “Undeserving sequel” stance many took with the game, however, just like with Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, is already on its way to best its predecessor commercially, with over 3.6 million copies by the end of September 2017.
As an evergreen title, with a content roadmap of 2 years and long life ahead of that for general play, as well as a blossoming competitive scene, Splatoon 2 is one of the shocks of the decade, from a new IP in a genre Nintendo never touched, to a hit on Wii U (Even with its low sales), to a sequel that is already on track to best it’s predecessor and live a long life on Switch. The future of the brand is clear, though the confidence in Splatoon 2 from its reveal, mirrors the found confidence after the reveal of the original, an idea that is fun, and works well, that proves the series can grow and reach even more people within the genre, and the inevitable Splatoon 3 will be a hit on Switch or whatever is next, as the franchise cements itself as both a system seller and crowd pleaser.
As always if you enjoyed this article be sure to leave some comments below letting us know what you think of Splatoon 2 as a package, and share this article with all your friends! Until next time!
Title: Super Mario Odyssey
Platform: Nintendo Switch
And frankly, isn’t that the best recommendation a game can have? The latest 3D Mario adventure returns to a more “sandbox” style with open areas to explore, challenges in each hidden away in separate little areas, with other objectives strewn about for good measure. That is also very clearly selling this adventure short.
To say it has returned to the sandbox 3D roots of Mario is true, but it took the idea and ran with it, introducing so many new ideas at every turn that amazingly don’t clash horribly and form a cohesive experience. Every kingdom you visit is its own quirky world, some big and some small, with its own unique denizens and culture, and of course, challenges.
The main objective: Power Moons to power your Hat Ship, The Odyssey, and rescue Princess Peach and new character Tiara, from Bowser, along with your new companion: Cappy. Cappy is a great addition, capturing enemies as a form of power-ups, giving you situational abilities to collect Moons and explore for other secrets, hidden areas and find Regional Purple Currency.
Purple Coins are plentiful, either 50 or 100 to a kingdom and they are…optional. Actually a lot of this game is. Purple Coins can only be spent in their respective kingdom for costumes and souvenirs. Regular coins can be spent anywhere on other costumes, Power Moons (Multiple ones post-game!) and extra hit points.
Power Moons however, are for progression. While a few are locked until you beat the final boss for when you return to the world later (And even then a load more are unlocked at that time too, so that checklist you see isn’t the whole story!), most Moons can be found right away. Go explore. Some areas are locked until you beat the main “Story Quest” for the world, and then things open up. This is great, as it shows you around the kingdom and the environment before fully opening up and letting you run wild, and even then, a lot of Moons are still available right away!
This game is constantly rewarding you, for looking, searching, even collecting coins. From beating just simple objectives there are over 850 Moons to collect, and you only need 500 to unlock every kingdom, less to beat the game. A lot of this game is entirely optional, and for most players even the mission based objectives will be enough. But if it isn’t, you can max out your Moon counter for a final secret reward at 999 Moons, which you need to grind coins to buy multiple of.
Frankly that is tedious and the reward is in no way worth it, unless you are absolutely a completionist. But that’s okay. Say for instance there are some Power Moons that are just too tough for you to get, you can always just buy a Power Moon to cover for it. That’s entirely an option. The game is incredibly accessible and while the sheer volume of Moons may dilute the experience into mindless collecting, and difficulty and obscurity of some collectibles almost necessitate guides, the game still rewards you regardless of what you do, and even through tedium, or difficulty, the game is designed to push you onwards.
Amazingly, the game isn’t too difficult. It has moments, mostly after the final boss and a few select mini games, but the game is comfortable. The only part I admit I didn’t like, was the start, where the Sand Kingdom (Seen below) is very early in-game and does feel overwhelming, too sparse and open for so early in the game. Thankfully, missing Purple Coins can be found by scanning any Bowser amiibo, and every amiibo gives you little rewards. Plus, nothing is locked behind amiibo, so those extra costumes you want can just be picked up at a moments notice once unlocked and ready to buy with coins.
Looping back like a hat throw back to Cappy: What a joy this little guy is. He is such a great addition to the game for both aerial mobility and jumps, combat, exploration, everything, and such a welcome addition. The only downside is some moves via motion controls don’t work quite as well using regular controls or, for instance, in handheld mode, and a few straight up refuse to work using motion controls, but they are never mandatory. Everything can be done with a press of a button should you wish, save for the occasional shaking of a Joy-Con for a captured enemy.
Speaking of “Cap-turing”, this is such a great mechanic for both exploration and combat, with 52 different creatures and even objects to control and utilise in your quest of simply exploring. None of them feel out-of-place in their respective worlds, and each adds something different: Impressive for such a large roster.
And this would be a mistake to not mention Mario himself. What an absolute dream to control with fluid movement, acrobatics, momentum and more. Playing a game in a 3D space has never felt so fun and joyous just from the HD Rumble through the controls from landing from a jump, or the feedback from an attack or getting hit, or riding a motor scooter. The game makes it feel fun to play, either through immersive technology inherent to the console itself, or just the pure feeling of play.
Visually, what a beauty, both docked and undocked! Stunning sprawling vistas, snowstorm flooded caves, dense forgotten jungles, ominous stormy towers, and a whole range of art styles that may seem odd, but mix so well into a fully comprehensive look at Mario’s World, in a way that one kingdom feels out-of-place being just a fly away from Peach’s Castle. So many of these worlds are so far from “Standard Mario” that it defies belief that creativity can run rampant even 30+ years after his introduction.
Audio is also a stunning highlight, with a post game option to play whatever tune you want at any time, being a standout feature. Each world is captured perfectly by audio and the jazzy vocal tunes don’t feel out-of-place. Every kingdom has its own distinct style and while some areas (Particularly a large open desert) generally lack music, the ambient noise is still wonderful.
Even every little attention to detail is wonderfully crafted and a labour of love for what could just be a footnote from a promotional material for a past game, represented musically or visually here. It’s such a wondrous thing how all the other Mario games can seemingly connect so effortlessly together, like something on this scale was always planned, showering years of characters and themes into one big package to sugar coat something almost entirely new.