Games Inbox: New IP of the current gen, Red Dead Redemption 2, and Journey appreciation

Games Inbox: Does gaming need more new blood?
                                                                                 Knack – surely the PS4 deserves better new IP?

The evening Inbox finds fault with The Witcher 3’s free DLC, as one reader asks after a first person Gears Of War.

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New problem

A friend brought up today the fact that games companies don’t seem to be having much luck creating new franchises this generation. And the more I thought about it the more I started to see what he thought. Third party publishers have done okay with things like Watch Dogs and Destiny, and I guess Titanfall and Dying Light. But all of those are quite similar to things the company has done before, and not much of a stretch.

The console makers have been a bit more daring, but oddly less successful. Nintendo seems to have done well with Splatoon, but that’s almost it in nearly three years. Sony’s had Knack, Driveclub, and The Order: 1886, all of which have had their problems and probably only Driveclub has any chance of a sequel. There is Bloodborne, but again that’s very similar to From’s other games and barely counts as a new IP.

Microsoft had Sunset Overdrive, which I quite liked but didn’t seem to do that well. And that’s it really, except for Scalebound and Quantum Break, which weren’t even at E3 and I don’t know when they’ll be out. The excuse of it being early days is running out and although there are now some great games on the new consoles there still aren’t many completely new ones.
Tonysays

Worth expanding on

Won’t someone please remaster, reimagine or remake (in new HD – not the HD of a couple of years ago) Harley’s Humongous Adventure? It was the worst game I played on the SNES. Please remake, reimagine or remaster everything. And while we’re at it, make more sequels. Can’t have too many yearly updates. That way video games will be as stagnant and stuck in their past as popular music and films.

Time for a Hob Nob and a sit down. Oh, and get off my lawn!
Dave

GC: We’re not sure if you’re trying to be sarcastic about everything here, but Harley’s Humongous Adventure would actually be a great subject for a remake: a good idea (a shrunken character moving around a normal-sized world) that was never done justice to originally. Although it’d probably be simpler if Marvel just made an Ant-Man game.

Secret sequel

RE: games that get the balance of story and gameplay right. In my opinion I think that the masters of this craft are probably Rockstar – they write brilliant stories that intertwine, etc. However, with the way that games are structured you are given the parts of the story as and when they are relevant (a bit like mini-episodes that when put together form part of a larger story). You can also jump in and out of different story threads by following different, missions, etc.

For me one of my favourite games for both story and gameplay has to be Red Dead Redemption – there is a gaping void in my life that needs to be filled by either a remastered edition or new Red Dead game entirely. But there seems to be very little noise about either so I think that if we were to see a new game this could still be a way off (unless Rockstar have been developing one in complete secrecy).
Rickandrolla (PSN ID)

GC: Rockstar do almost everything in complete secrecy.

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Repeating patterns

RE: Batman: Arkham Knight. I wrote in saying how much I was enjoying it but towards the end I fell out of love with it a bit. I was enjoying it up until that boring and difficult Arkham Knight tank battle, that took me ages to complete. And then the predictable Arkham Knight reveal scene and takedowns that followed (bit where the Knight is a sniper and you have to sneak up on him) were rubbish.

The actual final section was enjoyable but that cop out ending where it forces you to complete all of the side quests to get the true ending was the final straw and the whole last quarter ruined pretty much the whole game for me.

I’m guessing after three games Rocksteady just ran out of steam and it shows, which is a shame. I can see the parallels with the Nolan trilogy where the third film wasn’t bad but was easily the weakest of the three.
Simon

Proper DLC

I’m probably a jerk complaining about free stuff but the free DLC for The Witcher 3 slightly bothers me. Projekt RED wrote an open letter regarding these, stating they were a thank you. The free DLC on offer is very small and mostly just different beards and costumes and the odd quest. However, the two proper DLCs coming are normal paid-for.

I know other games are charging for the same type of DLC The Witcher is giving for free but I genuinely think it’s a PR stunt that has worked very well. I know I am complaining about The Witcher 3 giving us stuff for free, so maybe I should just be quiet, because they could have charged for these free DLC, and made a lot more money possibly.
Emmet

GC: Before the game was released they did give an indication of the sort of things the DLC would be, and the first was a joke at the expense of Bethesda’s horse armour. We’re not really sure what else they could do, except… not do it. The paid-for DLC is apparently the size of The Witcher 2, so they can’t give that away and not go bust.

First or nothing

Maybe this is a stupid question but why isn’t Gears Of War first person, or at least have an option? The games have always looked great and the graphics on the revamped version look really good, but surely it’d be a lot more immersive to see it all from a first person view?

To be honest I tend not to be interested in any game that’s not from first person, as I find it puts me into the game a lot more. Do you think they’ll add it to Gears for the remake or at least the sequel?
Gator

GC: With Gears it’s mostly because of the cover mechanic, which would be a lot more difficult to use in a first person view. Also, the game tends to have much more distinct characters than something like Halo, which is easier to get across in a third person view.

Wrong direction

The recent discussion about God of War and Kratos in particular reminded me of this video.

It sums up precisely why I loved the first game, but wasn’t as keen on the others (from a mechanical perspective they’re great, but as has been said before the new creative leads seem to have picked the wrong elements to focus on)
Sparky the Yak

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

Life is short

I downloaded and played Journey last night on my PlayStation 4. At first I was trying hard to get to grips with what the game was about and what it was striving to achieve. As time went on, the journey I was taking was more inspired by seeing others in the world striving to achieve the same goal as me – whatever that goal was.

There were many moments of importance in the game I felt, particularly when you were accompanied by a companion in a desolate place struggling to get to an objective due to battling against the elements; which was well balanced with the quicker elements of the game where your only choice was to go with the flow and speed along at ease and with enjoyment. I felt that staying together to keep warm was a really nice touch.

The game I felt was incredibly short, but it didn’t disappoint me when I reached the end. The game design and artwork offered a very stress free but beautiful experience, I often found myself looking away from where my character was on the screen and looking at the landscape around me.

Short? Yes. Play again? Maybe, but not likely. Enjoyable? Yes.

I would label Journey as a great experience rather than a great game.
Woko

Inbox also-rans

Just purchased Project CARS. Looking forward to getting stuck into a proper racer. One question, I don’t own a wheel, so will be using the PlayStation 4 control, does anyone in the community have any recommendations for the set-up? Or are the default settings good enough?
Joe Apps @ Dimp Digital

Of course I need more God Of War game but one question only: what will be on next after Kratos destroyed all gods?!
dead zone

GC: He quietly retires and opens up a Greek restaurant?

This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was inspired by reader Beersniper, who asks what is your favourite licensed video game?

A licensed game is basically anything that’s based on an existing property, whether it’s a film, comic book, TV series, or similar. Licensed games used to have a generally poor reputation but which ones do you think worked out well?

Do you think your choice would work just as well as an original game, or if the player has never heard of the licence it’s based on? How much leeway do you give a game if you happen to like the licence? And which game do you think has done the best justice to the characters and universe even though it wasn’t actually a very good game?

[“source – metro.co.uk”]