The evening Inbox is upset at another year’s worth of stupid release dates, as one reader worries about The Last Of Us Part II’s violence.
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Too good to be true
Excellent interview with the Cyberpunk 2077 guy, GC, as always. But I’m a little disturbed to see your comments about the gunplay, which I’ve seen echoed by a number of other sites. As far as I know nobody got to play the game, but the fact that so many thought the action looked suspicious, and the developer even seemed to confirm it to a degree has got me worried.
We all know the problems with The Witcher 3’s combat but I didn’t think there was any reason that should carry over to Cyberpunk, as it’s a completely different style of action. But it sounds worryingly like the same problems are happening again.
Something being too good to be true might be a cliché but the way it got to be one is because it’s usually true. I’m also deeply suspicious about the graphics on current consoles, which I expect to see get a noticeable downgrade. Some will say I’m being pessimistic but I’ve got a bad feeling about this and I think we should probably start tempering our expectations so that we’re not completely upset by the end result.
The usual problem
With all the release dates announced at E3 I started looking at how things were stacking up at Christmas and the new year and it’s already looking like a clusterf***. It’s stupid to imagine anything will change I suppose, but I still find it incredible how keen some publishers are to make life difficult for themselves.
You’ve got Gears 5 and Borderlands 3 coming out the same week, even though Microsoft knew the Borderlands date ahead of time and could’ve changed. You’ve got Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare and The Outer Worlds (and MediEvil) on the same day, again despite Microsoft knowing the COD date ahead of time.
And then Wars Jedi: Fallen Order on the same day Pokémon Sword/Shield. Not similar games but why have two such big releases on the same day? It damages both and is so unnecessary.
Likewise, you’ve got Final Fantasy VII Remake and Watch Dogs: Legion coming out within three days of each other in April, as if there wasn’t weeks and months of alternatives they could’ve used to avoid each other. Maybe Microsoft thinks release date don’t matter now with Games Pass but it does for other formats and all this is going to do is hurt good games, which is a real shame.
The Last Of Us Part II in early February sounds as good a time as any. But it’s got to come out sometime before November next year, so I really don’t see it being any time close to the PlayStation 5 coming out or it’ll put people off. Even June might be pushing it, so I expect Sony has told them to make sure it’s before Easter.
As to when it’ll be announced, I assume a State Of Play sometime this autumn, to make buying the PlayStation 4 seem more attractive/prove that it still has more games coming out this year.
What I’m more interested to see though is whether they’ve dialled down the extreme violence and nihilism of the previous trailers. When something is proving too grim for even gamers I think you know you’ve gone too far. A whole game about Ellie boasting how good she is at murdering people doesn’t sound that great to me.
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I agree the amount of pre-rendered footage over E3 was very worrying, especially for games were there didn’t seem to be any need for it. Something that I imagine they’ve barely started yet, like the Bethesda games, is fine but Gears 5 and other games that are out in just a few months? It’s purposefully misleading and I would argue even anti-consumer.
It’s also terrible at giving you an impression of what the game is, only what it’s not like – because if it did look like the pre-rendered trailer they would’ve just shown it live. See my logic?
I think that made games like Final Fantasy VII Remake all the more impressive, because although there was some pre-rendered stuff in there the gameplay seemed to be of almost equally quality. In fact I’d say it was probably the best graphics of the show. Would you agree, GC?
GC: We’d say it’s between that and Cyberpunk 2077.
RE: Gaz’s Broken Sword Reader’s Feature. I’m not particularly looking forward to either a potential Broken Sword 6 or Beyond A Steel Sky personally. I used to love Revolution’s games, but their recent games have lacked a lot of punch to the dialogue and story.
Their early games, from Lure Of The Temptress up to Broken Sword 2 had a brilliant writer called Dave Cummins working on them, who left Revolution and has sadly since passed away. When Broken Sword 3 and 4 came out they already had lots of other problems, but it was obvious when Broken Sword 5 – which went back to the styles of the early games – came out, that the story was nowhere near as engrossing.
I do hope Charles Cecil gets someone else in to help on the writing, but if it ends up the same quality as Broken Sword 5 I’m not interested.
I’ve had trouble keeping up with GC’s coverage of E3 this year because for some reason the main GameCentral page isn’t working properly.
Instead of the main page with whatever new articles have been posted, the link I usually go to (and the one in GC’s Twitter profile) goes to an article from last year about gaming addiction.
I’m hoping now you’re back from L.A. normal service can be resumed. It’s frustrating it happened during the busiest week of the gaming calendar, but at least I’ll have stuff to catch up on once it’s fixed and I can see what I’ve missed.
GC: There was site-wide outage on Tuesday for a few hours, that caused that article to pop up, but it was fixed pretty quickly and definitely isn’t an issue now. It sounds like there’s a problem with your browser cache or your accidentally bookmarked the addiction article?
So when is the game Wreckfest by Nordic THQ actually getting released for the PlayStation 4 GC?
I mean it’s been out on the PC for what seems ages ago now and I thought it would of been easy to release for console as a straight conversion? Do you guys know what’s taking so long with the delays?
GC: Performance issues seem to be the main problem. Console conversions are not necessarily easy for a small developer like Bugbear, especially in a game with a complex physics engine that relies (we’re guessing) on the greater processing power of a high-end PC.
Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here
Now that the dust has settled on E3 I have a few thoughts regarding Nintendo’s ‘win’.
Firstly, I had to smile when recalling some Inbox letters a week before E3 which predicted that there would be no surprises from Nintendo, as they’d announced everything beforehand. We then got The Witcher reveal, The Dark Crystal one, and then to cap it all the bombshell of the Zelda: Breath Of The Wild sequel reveal!
As you keep saying on these pages GC, trying to predict Nintendo is a fool’s game – you’d think that the contributors on these pages would realise this!
As regards the Zelda news we got, I was impressed by the gameplay shown by the Treehouse Live crew of Link’s Awakening. The graphical style they’ve gone with is very charming and suits this Zelda for kids’ game very well – I’ll probably end up getting it to tide me over until the proper, full-size one releases, hopefully around Christmas 2020.
The new footage of Astral Chain makes that game even more intriguing as to what it actually plays like, and Cadence Of Hyrule – Crypt Of The Necrodancer Featuring The Legend Of Zelda looked to be a great game going by the Treehouse footage.
All of the games released this year make me thankful that Animal Crossing has been put back to early next year – there is just not the time available to play everything properly. Regarding which, why are so many big games coming out in September? Anyone would think that the games industry is run by people with no business sense at all!
GC: Link’s Awakening isn’t any more a kid’s game than A Link To The Past, it just has a cuter art style.
Do my eyes deceive me or does the new Animal Crossing look like it’s actually changed the gameplay up a bit? Never mind Doom, this could be the first proper Animal Crossing sequel!
I’ve heard the excuses but I still think the Marvel’s Avengers faces look weird. Thor looks like he’s out of a PlayStation 2 game and Black Widow seems to be 20 years older than everyone else, for some reason.
This week’s Hot Topic
With E3 2019 having just finished the subject for this weekend’s Inbox asks what you thought was the best and worst announcements of the show.
What do you think was the best game or hardware (or service) reveal and why? And which was the worst? What gameplay footage impressed you the most and which games are you now looking forward to more – or less – than you were before E3?
Do you think E3 2019 was a vintage year and what were the best and worst aspects about it? Who do you think ‘won’ E3 and what was the best press conference? Please make sure to label your emails either for the weekday Inbox or Hot Topic, so we know which is which.
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