The Thursday Inbox is very much enjoying its time with Animal Crossing: New Horizons, but one reader doesn’t like Doom Eternal’s platforming.
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The perils of Mr Microsoft
Very interesting comments from the Microsoft boss about Xbox Series X and how they don’t seem worried about it coming out this year. But what he was saying about demand isn’t a small problem. Do they or Sony really want their consoles sitting on shelves this Christmas, because that is not going to be a good look. I guess they could limit stock, artificially or otherwise, to try and pretend there’s more demand than there is but he’s right: the last thing anyone’s going to want to do once the lockdown is over is turn back round, close the curtains, and start playing more video games.
There must be a danger we’ll all be sick of video games by the time all this is over! I don’t know what the answer is though and I doubt Mr Microsoft does either. Do you delay and risk Sony having everything to their self? If you do when is the right time? The coronavirus probably won’t be properly over until at least this time next year. Do you wait till then or wait even longer, so people get the whole ‘going outside’ thing out of their system?
I think they’ll just plough ahead. There’s too many questions with delaying it and no obvious ‘right time’. But I have to say I don’t know I’ll be buying them this year anymore. I was playing to get one or the other but money is suddenly tight and I don’t know how things are going to play out. The demand is there but I’m not sure the cash is.
I’ve been slowly working my way through the Resident Evil games over the years and the only one I haven’t played (aside from the bad spin-offs and Resident Evil 3, which I’m going to correct with the remake) is Resident Evil 6.
Is it that bad? It’s on the Switch now for £20. Shall I play for completion sake? Or is it one to totally avoid?
GC: Well, we wouldn’t pay £20 for it. Although you should be able to find it for virtually nothing on other formats, if that’s an option for you. It’s easily the worst mainline entry: an incoherent mess that is exhausting in all the many ways it finds to be incompetent. By the way, don’t forget Code: Veronica. It hasn’t aged very well but it’s the real Resident Evil 3 in all but name and we hope it’s not skipped over for a remake.
GTA, finished. Zelda: Breath Of The Wild, finished. Far Cry (all of them), finished. The Witcher 3, finished. Luigi’s Mansion 3, finished.
So on being sent home with the current climate I was at a loss for an open world game to pass the time…
Then at the back of the cupboard, having been played once and discarded as stealthy and boring, I find Horizon Zero Dawn, all I can say is glad I didn’t trade it!
Hope everyone else has found a hidden gem to pass the time and distract them from these strange times and more importantly, stay safe and take care.
Jowbullman (PSN ID)
PS: Thanks Mrs Bullman for being so patient with me at home. Don’t forget if you have no backlog there is always ‘clocking’!
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Control of your funny bone
Let’s try to lighten the mood. When Psychonauts 2 eventually comes out (hopefully still this year), it strikes me that there’s a good chance that the Psychonauts HQ that we see in the first gameplay trailer will serve as the primary hub for most of the game from where you will enter the many minds that need moulding.
Which would mean that Psychonauts 2 would be like Control but played for laughs. Haven’t played Control yet. Reviews weren’t quite great enough for me to go rush out and buy it close to full price. I’ll pick it up when I can, though, now that it’s probably nearer to the £20-25 mark.
Please be good, Psychonauts 2. I can’t bear another Shenmue 3 scale disappointment…
The hell priests and their demonic hordes clearly decided that the best way to stop Doomguy wasn’t to throw endless armies of demons at him. But instead to create nonsensical and daft sections of platforming and climbing that would drive him so mad he would quit and fly away in his ship forever.
Lara Croft would have been better suited to this game rather than Doomguy. It’s annoying, as it breaks up
the gameplay; in fact, it’s horrendous. What were they thinking designing these levels? Why not elevators, fancy portals, etc. I hate the old video game cliché of moving platforms, it’s horrible especially in first person shooter mode. If you are going to do it then keep it to third person games.
That said, once you are in the thick of combat, being attacked on all sides and messing around with various upgrades, then the game is truly great.
So, I’ve finally finished Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, or rather forced myself to finish it. I should also thank the TV advert for ruining the finale of the game! But, overall, I have to say this game left a really sour taste in my mouth. I used to love Star Wars and have had to accept that I’m clearly not the target audience anymore, since the new films leave me bewildered and frustrated in equal measure, but this game received near unanimous praise so I was expecting to at least enjoy aspects of it.
My main issue was that I’d done every single thing the game asks of you in other games before, and those games had done it all better. The pilfering from other franchises is just astounding, and at times, baffling. Why did they copy Dark Souls’ resurrecting-enemies-when-you-save system? It isn’t even explained why this happens! (I think you highlighted as such in your review.)
Then, you have the most dull and boring protagonist coupled with an equally mundane story and unskippable cut scenes. I’ve re-read some reviews and a lot seem to just appreciate the fact that it’s a competent, single-player Star Wars game, and I’ll admit that the graphics are very good on the whole.
I also accept that throughout video game history developers have copied aspects of other games, but I felt that in this instance there really was zero creativity, and I really hope its success doesn’t encourage other developers to follow suit. I’m mainly just ranting because I’m surprised I ended up feeling this way about a game I really expected to enjoy. Did anyone else feel a similar way?
GC: We wouldn’t describe our review as unanimous praise. Also, watch The Mandalorian.
Even better than the real thing
Pinball FX2 is astonishing, talk about wow! Even better than having your own table at home (which I did have).
For £11.99 you get three tables and they are all amazing. Wait for a sale to buy add-on tables, which are all just as good. I just wish they would do free demo for people to try. You will never go back to 2D pinball once you have played this.
Love of life simulators
With the coronavirus and lockdown real-life has been doom and gloom but what a time for games! Both Animal Crossing: New Horizons and Doom Eternal are excellent!
New Horizons is the first Animal Crossing game I’ve played and I’m loving it. I’d go so far to say it’s the best, well I’m not quite sure what the genre is, farming type game? I’d put it up against Harvest Moon, Stardew Valley, No Man’s Sky, and Minecraft. And of those I’d say it’s the best. The graphics are splendid, the music is so relaxing, the gameplay is so addictive. I love fishing in games, as this feature will testify, and Animal Crossing’s is fantastic!
Love catching bugs, collecting fruit, wood and rocks. Love the crafting and planting trees and flowers then tending to them. It’s all so very wholesome and satisfying. Making my home the way I want it to be. I love good checklists to complete and Nintendo nailed what this game is here. The museum deserves its own letter, it is the cherry on top of a wonderful cake! Love having my friends over and visiting them with great voice, text, and emotes to communicate. The game is a marvel. Also, special note: Tom Nook’s news announcements in the morning are especially welcome in these dark times, with much more positive news!
Doom Eternal I’m only a few missions in, mostly because Animal Crossing demands all of my free time, but so far I’m loving it too. The combat is excellent. Fantastic graphics and music. I enjoy the jumping puzzles, they kind of remind me of old Tomb Raider type puzzles and Doom Eternal’s are great. Good exploration and collectible hunting too. I’ll write more once I’ve played a bit more.
So there you have it, two excellent games to see us through the outbreak. My thanks and hats off to Nintendo and Id Software/Bethesda!
Big Angry Dad82 (gamertag)/BigAngryDad82/SW-0935-4027-5314 (NN ID)
GC: Games like Harvest Moon and Animal Crossing are usually described as life simulations.
It’s been a while since State Of Decay 2 launched. Is it still a buggy mess?
GC: We haven’t played it since we reviewed it. In fact, this is the first time we remember anyone even mentioning it since then.
Figment and Tormentor x Punisher are free on PC on Epic Games Store from today for the next week.
This week’s Hot Topic
The question for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Grackle, who asks if how you play video games has, or is likely to, change during the coronavirus outbreak?
Have you been playing more or less games in the last few weeks and if you’re planning to self-isolate, or just spend more time at home in general, do you have any specific plans in terms of what games you’re going to play? Are you going to be working through your backlog, for example, or playing something specifically to cheer yourself up?
Will you be playing more online games in order to keep in touch with and speak to friend and family, and will you be encouraging them to play games where normally they wouldn’t?
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The small print
New Inbox updates appear every weekday morning, with special Hot Topic Inboxes at the weekend. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.
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