Games Inbox: Best Xbox One and PS4 exclusives, Smash Bros. Ultimate spirits, and Max Payne 4

Halo 5: Guardians - does it matter how good it is?

Halo 5: Guardians – what’s the best Xbox One exclusive?

The evening Inbox questions Sony’s approach to backwards compatibility, as one reader discovers a PSVR bargain at Asda.

To join in with the discussions yourself email gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 



Top Threes

In response to Sonda’s letter, I would say that, as of writing, the game of the generation still has to be Zelda: Breath Of The Wild, just due to how huge that game was and how much it did for the Switch. However, I find it quite telling that two of the biggest games this generation (Breath Of The Wild and God Of War) both changed the formula of the games before, whilst still holding on to what makes the series great.

But on the topic of top threes, I ask: what would you say the top three exclusives of each console are? I’m not too confident on the Xbox One, and I don’t own a PlayStation 4, so I can’t say much on that, but for the Switch, I would say Breath Of The Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, and Splatoon 2.
Jacze

GC: That sounds about right for the Switch, especially if you discount Wii U ports.

 



Arch nemesis

Thinking about Smash Bros. recently has me intrigued with the number of villains getting introduced and the fact that every single character has their own classic mode set of specific characters to face. Which leads me to believe that every character must have some sort of pre-Master Hand boss they will face.

Which means the rumours of Skull Kid could be true, Young Link needs a boss to face after all. But potentially there would need to be many more characters as Olimar and Captain Falcon, as just two examples, are the only representatives in their series. But knowing how crazy Sakurai is, anything is possible!
Mr foreign Warren
PS: 2064: Read Only Memories recently got released on the eShop and as visual novel fans, I wondered if you are taking a look as it is something I would like to pick up when I get through my other 15 Switch backlog.

GC: There definitely seems to be something in that. Also, we have to apologise to the reader who wrote in about the ghost-related game mode theory, as it seems he might actually have been on the money after all. As for 2064, it’s Gamescom next week so we’re not sure we’re going to have time for it.

 



Instant collection

I’d be genuinely surprised if PlayStation 5 wasn’t backwards compatible with PlayStation 4 and PlayStation VR.

I don’t think I’m alone in going into a new gen for the first time with a mostly digital collection of games, a large one too. Including 105 instant game collection games it’s 250 games, I have literally years of great games to play. A simple and easy incentive for Sony to retain me as a customer is to provide me access to that large collection on their new machine.

I think they will need to offer incentives like that as well, in light of the competition raising their game significantly since the start of the gen when Sony had a clear track for some time. Sony totally deserve their dominance this gen, they’ve easily put out the best product in my opinion, but I think they will find the start of the next gen far more competitive.
Simundo Jones

GC: Sony’s logic has always been that they try to encourage new sales by discouraging playing previous gen games on new consoles. But if we had to guess, we’d go with you and say they’re probably likely to change their tune this time.

 

E-mail your comments to: gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 



Max redemption

I watched the Red Dead Redemption II gameplay trailer the other day and was blown away by it!

Then I watched a few videos from various sites going through the trailer, pointing out things we might have missed, and almost all of them made a comment about the action going straight into gameplay seamlessly from a cut scene. And the bit where he holds a shotgun and switches to it from using a revolver. It seems to me like everyone has forgotten Rockstar nailed all this six years ago with the awesome Max Payne 3.

I was just surprised that I haven’t seen anyone recognise this.

What are the chances of us getting another Max Payne, GC?
Skill Influx (gamertag)

GC: That’s hard to say because Rockstar’s entire attitude to game development changed drastically with the success of a GTA V. Red Dead Redemption II will be the first game since then so it’s hard to say how they feel about their other, less successful, franchises now.

 



Visual difference

RE: Middlemiester. Native 4K all the way for me over 60fps. I tried the PlayStation 3 remaster
of God Of War 2 at 60fps just after playing it on PlayStation 2 at 30fps and could not honestly tell
the difference. Also tried this with last gen version of DmC and the definitive edition at 60fps and there was no difference to me.

I thought that Gears Of War on the Xbox One was at 60fps as it felt so smooth to play but
a Google search told in just ran at 30fps, which left me quite surprised.

Also can’t tell the difference between the mainline Forza games usually at 60fps and their Horizon
variants which are locked at 30fps so I’d rather have the impressive looking 4K visuals were I can see a significant improvement.
Chaosphere616 (gamertag)

 



Pass it on

Digital sales are rife on Xbox at the moment. Battlefield 1 has an 85% discount, which I purchased for a measly £5.25. And it has just received an Xbox One X patch! It really is a strong argument for going digital only. The only thing missing is digital trade-ins for store credit and game gifting games you own, not just new purchases.

Being able to pass on the digital ownership of completed games to friends would be a major step towards convincing more gamers to go digital-only. I could get rid of No Man’s Sky then! No offence to fans of the game, too much of a grind-fest for my taste.
Anon

 



Absolutely fabulous

Though it’s been slow progress, I have to say I’m really enjoying God Of Four, I mean God Of War. Always annoying when that happens, even in movies. But that’s not my point.

Once I had finished restoring Alfheim, I kind of thought it had a She-Ra, Crystal Castle vibe going on. Lots of gold, bright clean space, that Celtic knot kind of architecture. It was so strangely girly for such an uber-macho game. Not unwelcome, quite fabulous, in fact.
DMR

 

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

 



Stuffed fridge

Thanks to a recent change of jobs, I’ve suddenly found myself able to splash out a bit and have replaced my loyal, but sadly no more, PlayStation 3 with a PS4 Pro. I’m pretty happy with it, and I’m enjoying being able to pick up all the games I’ve seen come out over the years that I’ve not been able to previously afford for seriously good prices (Doom, Titanfall 2, and Mirror’s Edge Catalyst were all under £10 – I actually feel so guilty, like I’ve personally robbed those developers…)

However, this lovely new console, with its 1TB of storage is nearly 75% full already. I’ve only had the thing a month! Yes, I’ve apparently bought 16 games for it in that time, but one of the downsides to this new job is I work a lot harder and for longer, so I’ve had very little time to play. So far I’ve only been able to have swift run throughs of Doom and Titanfall and am halfway through Uncharted 4, and so my save data files are very small.

To my knowledge the games aren’t fully installed (I need the discs in the drive to play anything for starters) but all the patches and updates have been like an avalanche. I don’t think my feeble broadband has ever had to work so hard. My 80GB PlayStation 3 needed a bigger hard drive after about maybe four years, but after I put a 320GB one in it was fine until it died and I had over 60 games by the end. I’m pretty sure it was only just over half full too. If I didn’t know better I’d say I had a virus or something, but no, apparently this generation really is just full games as patches, with download codes on Blu-rays.

I was thinking of picking up No Man’s Sky at some point now it’s been patched up, but I’m fearful I’ll need a whole hard drive just for one game! What on Earth has gone so wrong that every developer needs such huge updates for everything? I shudder to think what a download-only future would be like: we’d all need petabyte drives as standard. You don’t seem to get this nonsense from Nintendo on the Switch.
yourhomeisatrisk (PSN ID)
Currently trying to play: Uncharted 4 and Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker

GC: The Switch internal storage is tiny? And some third party games don’t even run from a cartridge without extra downloads.

 



Inbox also-rans

Shame about the Phantom Doctrine… Fortunately I’ve just bought and started playing XCOM 2: War Of The Chosen! So good.
Matt Kirk.

GC: It’s still far from a bad game, although it might be best waiting for it to go on sale.

Just a quick mention that Asda have the PlayStation VR headset for £199 in their sale.
Ian F

GC: Wow, that’s good.

 



This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Franky, who asks what’s the one game annoucement you never expect to hear?

With Gamescom coming up next week what’s the one thing you’re confident won’t be revealed? Whether it’s a sequel, reboot, or some kind of hardware annoucement what do you think is the least likely, without being completely silly.

What annoucement have you given up any hope of hearing about and why do you think it’ll never happen? What’s the most surprised you’ve ever been by an annoucement and how did the final product turn out?

E-mail your comments to: gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 

The small print
New Inbox updates appear twice daily, every weekday morning and afternoon. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word 4Player viewer features at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

If you need quick access to the GameCentral channel page please use www.metro.co.uk/games and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Games Inbox: God Of War the game of the generation, the death of Dishonored, and 60fps vs. 4K

God Of War (PS4) - not your typical sequel

God Of War – the best game since the Xbox 360 era?

The morning Inbox wants Bethesda to make a Nintendo Switch exclusive, as one reader wants suggestions for the best Switch downloads.

To join in with the discussions yourself email gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 



Top three

A little late to the party here, but at least it’s given me something to get through the summer games drought. I’ve just beaten the Queen of the Valkyrie on God Of War and I think I’ve finally squeezed the last trips of entertainment out of it. And what can I say but what a game! I knew it was going to be good because of the reviews but having disliked the originals, and particularly the character of Kratos, I was still dubious.

But this really felt like gaming growing up, giving a one-dimensional edgelord of a character a real personality and emotions. I actually liked Kratos by the end of the game and I am shocked by that. I can’t believe he actually took the moral high ground when Atreus went off on one and by the end he wanted to actively do good and help people.

That all sounds kind of sappy when I put it like that but in the game he still manages to be a total badass and yet very sympathetic too. And all of the story is got across with a minimum of cut scenes and exposition. I actually really liked listening to the head when you’re rowing about, so much so that I would hang around just to hear the end.

I’ve heard the term used a few times but my question is whether God Of War is the game of the generation? It’s a real question too because I think the other main contenders would be Nintendo games and since I haven’t got a Switch I can’t offer an opinion. But that makes God Of War at least top three, right?
Sonda

 



Dishonourable discharge

I see that Dishonored has recently been described as ‘resting for now’, which translated probably means we’ve seen the last of it. It’s a shame as both main games and Death Of The Outsider were all excellent and the Steampunk setting was genuinely different.

I do wonder how different things for the franchise might have been if the second one in particular had gotten a late summer release, when new games are a bit sparse, rather than a congested November.

A bigger concern might be the fate of Arkane Studios in the long run, as I don’t think Prey was particularly successful either. If they survive I’d imagine their next effort will be some kind of multiplayer only game as a service, I’m just not expecting it to be either of those two.
Mr.Saveloy

GC: You’re probably right on most counts, although we think Arkane will be given a fair chance with some multiplayer-featured games before being put at risk.

 



Double dipping

Does anyone else do this? Please tell me yes. I own a PlayStation 4 and an Xbox One. Sometimes, if it’s a good bargain, I buy a game I already own because I like a bargain.

So far, off the top of my head, I have two copies of Evil Within, Diablo III, Batman: Arkham Origins, Tomb Raider (both of ‘em), Prey, Borderlands: The Handsome Collection, BioShock Trilogy, Shadow of Mordor, and honestly I could go on and on. I like the convenience of digital sales but it’s feeding my compulsive need to bag a bargain. Please tell me I’m not alone.
TheRatman5469 (gamertag)/TheRatman (PSN ID)

GC: You mean a game you already own but only physically, yes?

 

E-mail your comments to: gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 



Download list

I have recently invested in a Switch and think it is amazing. I’m looking to download some indie games like Yoku’s Island Express and Axiom Verge. Which out of Hollow Knight, Salt And Sanctuary, or Dead Cells would you recommend?

Are there any decent arcade shooters like R-Type, Gradius, Hellfire, Thunder Force, etc. Is there any likelihood of a compilation of shooters or would it mean to many companies getting involved?
Mattpat

GC: All those indie games you mention are good, but we’d give the slight edge to Hollow Knight. 2D shooters aren’t a Switch speciality but it does have Ikaruga, Strikers 1945 II, Steredenn: Binary Stars, and a few arcade/Neo Geo ports like Metal Slug and Terra Cresta. We love the idea of a 2D shooter compilation featuring different franchise but couldn’t see it ever happening.

 



Curb your enthusiasm

What I liked about the new gameplay trailer for Red Dead Redemption II is that Rockstar clearly forked out for a better narrator than the one they used for GTA Online’s reveal. Remember that? The woman was hilariously robotic.

‘This-is-a-game-that-will-have-things-in-it-and-places-that-you-can-go. There-will-be-things-you-can-do-and-innovatively-innovative-gameplay.’ That’s probably enough hyphens for one day. Needless to say, the woman’s enthusiasm was infectious.
DMR

GC: We’re not sure it’s not just the same one but with new batteries.

 



The odd couple

I didn’t realise Doom Eternal was already announced for Switch, that is an impressive amount of support Bethesda is showing for Nintendo. Of all the third companies around I never would’ve matched those two up, but it’s nice to see. But what I’d really like is if Bethesda did something exclusive for Switch, like Ubisoft has done on occasion.

I don’t know what kind of game that would be but maybe some kind of immersive sim (I know GC hate that term, but at least you know what I mean!) but with a more colourful, comedic angle? Maybe that’s what Arkane could do as their next project, now that Dishonored seems to be dead?

I’d also really like to see the Skyrim avatar in Super Smash Bros. Although I’d also really like to see a Dark Souls rep as well and I don’t know that they’d do both. Maybe the compromise could be Doomguy and Solaire of Astora?
Duggan

 



Music to your ears

On Dakka’s requests for which Castlevanias to play, personally I would recommend just sticking to Super Castlevania IV, Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night, and pretty much any of the Game Boy Advance titles. Those were really good on average.
aelfin

Just in response to Dakka’s letter RE: Castlevania. If you have an Xbox 360, Symphony Of The Night is available on there. Or it’s on backwards compatibility on Xbox One!
Anon

 

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

 



Already happened

Just wondering what everyone’s predictions will be as to when we will hear about developers being sent PlayStation 5 development kits?

My guess is around late 2020 mid 2021 as the PlayStation 4 and the PS4 Pro will of lost their momentum and next gen will be much closer. Although this is still far off it won’t be long before we see PlayStation 5 games in the very early stages of development.

I must admit though that I can’t see Sony offering PlayStation 4 backwards compatibility unless they use their games streaming service, although it should be possible to at least run digital versions of PlayStation format classics.

One thing I am really curious about though is what hardware architecture Sony will be using in the PlayStation 5 development kits when they eventually do ship these out.
gaz be rotten (gamertag)

GC: Rumours suggest they were sent out to some studios earlier this year.

 



Inbox also-rans

A question for GC or any readers. If you could choose 4K HDR or a locked 60fps on current consoles which would you pick? I have a 4K TV but find 60fps has a genuine impact on gameplay so would choose that.
Middlemiester

Insurgency is currently free on Steam at time of writing (Tuesday evening).
Andrew J.
PS: That was interesting news about The Chinese Room being bought by Sumo. I quite like Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture and Dear Esther.
Currently playing: Yoku’s Island Express, NieR: Automata and Ace Attorney: Spirit Of Justice

 



This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Franky, who asks what’s the one game annoucement you never expect to hear?

With Gamescom coming up next week what’s the one thing you’re confident won’t be revealed? Whether it’s a sequel, reboot, or some kind of hardware annoucement what do you think is the least likely, without being completely silly.

What annoucement have you given up any hope of hearing about and why do you think it’ll never happen? What’s the most surprised you’ve ever been by an annoucement and how did the final product turn out?

E-mail your comments to: gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 

The small print
New Inbox updates appear twice daily, every weekday morning and afternoon. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word 4Player viewer features at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

If you need quick access to the GameCentral channel page please use www.metro.co.uk/games and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Games Inbox: Monster Hunter: World success, how to get into Castlevania, and Overcooked 2 love

Monster Hunter: World – are you one of the 10 million players?

The morning Inbox imagines Microsoft and Nintendo teaming up over VR, as one reader gets very excited about Forza Horizon 4 X Halo.

To join in with the discussions yourself email gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 



A winner at last

I guess it’s been inevitable that 2018 has not been as good as 2017 for games, at least not yet, but I have to say that as a long-suffering Monster Hunter fan it has been amazing! Not only is Monster Hunter: World the best-selling of the series ever, the biggest game of the year on Steam, and the biggest Japanese game ever on Steam it has now sold over 10 million copies worldwide! I would never have even dreamed this a year ago.

I’ve been playing the series since the PSP days and have always loved it, but been frustrated that so few other people do. I get that before the controls were awkward and splitting levels up into little chunks was lame but it just seemed like the thing was too Japanese in general to ever appeal to general audiences.

The thing I love about World is that while they have rounded off some of the rough edges they haven’t really lost the tone or appeal of the series. It’s still very Japanese and it’s still super hard towards the end. I am so glad for Capcom and the success they have won for themselves by just sticking with it.

I guess the power of the current gen consoles helped a lot, so in that sense the game’s time had just come. But to see it accepted on Steam as well, that’s just great. Long live Monster Hunter. And if you haven’t tried it yourself now’s the time to join the winning team!
Abloh

 



Worlds apart

I agree that Nintendo would be the best thing to happen to VR, it’s just a shame that I don’t see anyone they can be brought together. Nintendo will never make hardware powerful enough to run good VR and Nintendo will never work with other companies to put their game expertise onto other headsets.

I mean they won’t but I would love if that’s the thing that gets them and Microsoft working together. Never mind Banjo & Kazooie in Smash Bros., imagine Microsoft making the ultimate VR headset and console and Nintendo providing the games! Now that would be a moment in gaming history worth beholding.

It might finally stop some console wars too, which I find so pointless. We need competing consoles to prevent a monopoly but that means fans should appreciate the fact there are rival companies not resent it. That reader’s letter about Xbox sales to date was pretty sobering and shows how far Microsoft are getting behind. Nintendo are also vulnerable every time there’s a new generation but together they could rule the galaxy as father and son… or something.
Cranston

 



Halo Truck Simulator

I know there are a lot of Forza fans on, and even some Halo fans hangin’ on too, but it looks like Forza Horizon 4 is going to feature even more Halo stuff than usual, with some cool-looking leaked screenshots on Reddit I saw. It seems to be a whole Halo-themed showcase event, with a proper Master Chief style driver and everything. Not surprising given how much Microsoft seem to be building up the hype again for Halo but it does my heart good to see the Chief no longer being treated as second fiddle.

A lot of the other pics all seem to revolve around trucks, which look like a lot of fun. I don’t know if they’re going to be go for some kind of Euro Truck Simulator thing but at the very least it looks like a homage to little known Steven Spielberg flick The Duel.

It’s all good stuff and I agree that Forza Horizon 4 is almost certainly going to be the best first party game this Christmas (not a Super Smash Bros. fan).
Toto

 

E-mail your comments to: gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 



Quick catch-up

With all the excitement over Castlevania at the moment I tried to look around and get into the series and it’s actually kind of hard. All the old games are really old and all the newer ones are on old Nintendo portables. Not exactly accessible to fans.

Can GC or readers give some advice of not only which ones to try or how to actually get hold of them? I know they didn’t start off as Metroidvanias, so which ones are the must haves and how can I get feel for the series from playing as few as possible? If you know what I mean.
Dakka

GC: The Classic Mini NES and SNES are good places to start if you can get them, and are interested in their other games. The NES has Castlevania I and II, with the latter being the first non-linear entry in the franchise. The SNES has Super Castlevania IV, which is arguably the best of the 16-bit era. The Dracula X Chronicles on PSP/PS Vita is also a good one to get, if that’s an option, as it has both Rondo Of Blood and Symphony Of The Night. Rondo Of Blood is important as it’s the missing link between the old games and the new action role-playing era begun by Symphony Of The Night.

 



Bitter experience

I played the We Happy Few early access beta (or whatever it was) and I think it means I have access to the full thing now…. and I still don’t want to play it. According to the reviews there’s more story and missions now but the original was just mind-numbingly bad, like I can’t even begin to imagine what they were thinking with all the survival stuff and the horribly randomly-generated map. It was like two completely different teams came up with an idea for a setting and a game and only found out about one another at the last minute.

Bizarre to think that Microsoft has bought them, but I can imagine there’ll be told to forget We Happy Few pretty quickly. Not that I imagine that’ll be a problem by the end of the week even. Okay, I sound bitter but I spent money on that game and it was awful. Although I see now they’re trying to sell it for £55 online?! Unbelievable.
Rosarch

 



Cooked to perfection

I was so hyped for Overcooked 2. Me and my Mrs have had a great time playing through the manic levels. Loved what they have done with the sequel. Especially the throwing food ability. But less than a week and it’s all over (time of writing). We have collected all stars on all levels. So we have nothing left to do. I’m not saying it was easy but I was hoping for more of a challenge. Just so the game lasted longer.

Maybe it’s easier with only two-players. I’ve not played with more than three (story mode). How hard is it with four players GC? Does the Star Targets double?

Can’t wait for some DLC. What are the chances of another overcooked Christmas DLC?
TIGHTasRsols

GC: The later levels are near impossible on your own but it does get easier the more players you have. We’d be very surprised if there wasn’t some DLC this year.

 



Running out of ink

I really liked the idea of the typewriter/keyboard for Resident Evil Collector’s Edition. After reading your story about it I was surprised that they hadn’t thought of an ink ribbon USB drive.

Well, at least I didn’t get any hits with an Internet search. So if they do exist I couldn’t find them. Has GC ever heard of them?
TIGHTasRsols

GC: We don’t recall ever seeing them, but there is a lot of weirdly specific memorabilia in Japan.

 

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

 



Combat Evolved

RE:Tankers letter about Edge 25th anniversary.

Received my issue today and am not disappointed. I love their anniversary issues and this one is no different.

I was a little sad I didn’t get the Master Chief image as unlike Tanker I absolutely believe it deserves its place on the cover.

On its release first person shooters had rarely been a huge success on console and Halo was a fundamental step forward in making the genre work on a controller. Plus, the artificial intelligence, vehicles, level design, and multiplayer were best in class.

It led to first person shooters being one of the most popular genres on console and basically saved Microsoft’s entrance into the market, it even still plays great today.

I appreciate that no game is fun for everyone but to underestimate Halo is to misunderstand how much it impacted gaming on its release and its influence on the genre since.
DarKerR (gamertag)/DarKerR-UK (PSN ID)

 



Inbox also-rans

Now that it’s on Switch I finally got around to playing Okami and I’m loving it so far. Can’t believe these graphics are basically PlayStation 2!
Sweetums

So are we not going to see anything about Metroid Prime 4 or Bayonetta 2 this year? I was so hyped by their reveals last year and yet that’s the one and only time they’ve ever talked about them!
Googleplex

GC: There’s a good chance one or both will be at The Game Awards in December, or at least something new from Nintendo.

 



This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Franky, who asks what’s the one game annoucement you never expect to hear?

With Gamescom coming up next week what’s the one thing you’re confident won’t be revealed? Whether it’s a sequel, reboot, or some kind of hardware annoucement what do you think is the least likely, without being completely silly.

What annoucement have you given up any hope of hearing about and why do you think it’ll never happen? What’s the most surprised you’ve ever been by an annoucement and how did the final product turn out?

E-mail your comments to: gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 

The small print
New Inbox updates appear twice daily, every weekday morning and afternoon. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word 4Player viewer features at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

If you need quick access to the GameCentral channel page please use www.metro.co.uk/games and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Games Inbox: Uncharted movie doubts, Black Ops 4 beta feedback, and Ikaruga on PS4

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 08: Tom Holland attends the UK Fan Event to celebrate the release of Marvel Studios' 'Avengers: Infinity War' at The London Television Centre on April 8, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for Disney)

Does Tom Holland make sense as Nathan Drake?

The evening Inbox adds up how many consoles Nintendo has ever sold, as one reader looks forward to Edge’s 25th anniversary.

To join in with the discussions yourself email gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 



The Young Nate Chronicles

Oh god, make it stop! What am I talking about? Why video game movies of course. Apparently this idea of doing Uncharted with the guy out of Spider-Man is still going on, which makes zero sense to me. What’s the point of having a film about Nathan Drake where he’s not really Nathan Drake? Or are they signing up the actor for so many sequels he’s going to be growing into the role and still playing him in his 40s?

What I’ll never understand is why isn’t the default way of making a video game movie something that’s CGI? It seems so obvious. It would’ve made Tomb Raider make a lot more sense and after seeing those cut scenes for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate a whole movie that looked like that would be amazing. I assume the reason is they just want something to be ‘the next superhero fad’ and live action will always make more than animated (unless it’s Frozen, I guess?).

But I just don’t see how something like Uncharted is going to work as a film. There’s little to no supernatural elements in the games so it’s just going to be National Treasure without Nicholas Cage. And is the Spider-Man guy going to be shooting as many people as the real Nate? That’s not family entertainment.
Gazza

 



Constant change

Played the Call Of Duty: Black Ops 4 video over the weekend and pretty much liked it. I mean, it’s not much different from the last Black Ops, which I’m sure is the point, but I could see the Overwatch/hero shooter comparisons which I’m okay with.

I agree with the idea that Call Of Duty gets too much grief from some people and purely because it’s popular. They do a much better job, generally, than Battlefield at doing something new each time and they have to come up with stuff every year, not just every two years. I mean, the most hated Call Of Duty game is Infinite Warfare and that was because people didn’t want it to change too much!

I’m most interested in Blackout, of course, but if they manage to do something new with Battle Royale I think this year’s could end up being a classic.
Lempton

 



Mount Rushmore

Just to remind people that it’s Edge’s 25th anniversary this month and the latest mag is going out to subscribers now. I have to admit I stopped subscribing a long time ago but I will try and pick this one up from the shops. I don’t know if these four covers are just for subscribers but I thought it was interesting the games they picked to be on them: Mario, Street Fighter II, Halo, and Dark Souls.

Mario and Street Fighter are totally legitimate picks for gaming icons I think, and while Master Chief seems a little old hat nowadays I think he’s there because Edge gave the first Halo 10/10. I think they didn’t for Dark Souls but did retroactively, so that makes sense too. But it’s also probably the best modern game that’s also had a big impact as well.

Narrowing 25 years of gaming down to four games isn’t easy but while I don’t personally care for Halo it’s going to be a shooter in that spot and Call Of Duty just doesn’t have anywhere iconic enough characters.
Tanker

 

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Lifetime to date

Read with interest the news about Sony selling 500 million consoles overall and just as I was wondering what Nintendo’s title must be came across this story that shows it just past the 700 million mark!

Just like with Sony’s numbers that’s including both home and portable consoles, but obviously Nintendo has been in the game 11 years longer than Sony. Even so it’s still an impressive figure, especially given Nintendo has had some flop consoles in their time and Sony never really has.

Out of interest I looked up to see how many iPhones have been sold since 2007 and apparently it’s 1.2 billion, so Nintendo are more than half way to that. Which is amazing really considering that games are such a trivial thing and the potential audience is much smaller.

I’d love to know how many Microsoft has sold but of course they won’t give figures anymore because they’re losing at the moment. Using rough estimates though it seems to be about 150 million, which isn’t great considering they only joined the console wars seven years after Sony.
Grover
PS: Isn’t it weird how Americans refused to call portables consoles? As if they were some completely different concept. Some of them run the exact same games!

GC: It is weird, yes.

 



Rousing the beast

While the talk of ROMs on the Inbox has been… to be honest a bit predictable, the report I read on Eurogamer noted something rather interesting.

The main emulation site in question had acquiesced to Nintendo’s DMCA takedown requests and had removed links to all of the Nintendo ROMs on the site previously.
However, despite this the recent shutdown was due to Nintendo issuing a ginormous lawsuit against multiple websites, including the aforementioned site.

While the other sites may have been guilty of non-compliance, the site I am alluding to gives the impression that it’s almost like Nintendo was protecting the IP of companies other than themselves.
Joseph Dowland

 



Right way round

I don’t know if I missed it or there was no fanfare even on GameCentral who often praise Treasure but Ikaruga was released on PlayStation 4 a month after the Swtich release. I couldn’t help notice as well that the review has the Switch price as £13.49 whereas on the PSN store the price is £7.99. £13.49 is a fair price but I guess it just goes to show you charge what you think you can get away with.

I’m excited to try to conquer this rock hard classic, never did on Xbox 360. I’m doubly excited as I bought a 144Hz monitor recently that is designed to rotate 90 degrees which should give it a more acradey feel. On that note does any die hard bullet hell fans have any other picks for PlayStation 4 that have a flip screen mode. Thanks.

While looking up Ikaruga’s PlayStation 4 release on the net there where rumours Radiant Silvergun may also come to the Switch/PS4. Fingers crossed.
Simundo Jones

GC: Two Ikaruga reviews in as many months would’ve been pushing it even for us. We believe Battle Garegga, Ghost Blade HD, and some of the Arcade Archives games have TATE modes, but we don’t have a rotating screen anymore to check.

 



No brands

Just saw your article about the Capcom Resident Evil 2 boxset. It seems to just be a rebranded Qwerkywriter keyboard which retails for around £200-£240 depending on region layout.

I know some people will want the Resi-themed one no matter the cost, but I just thought I’d highlight the massive premium to pay for what I assume is a repaint.
Lord Darkstorm

GC: Thank you for this, we updated the story to show where the keyboard had come from.

 

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

 



Trailer catch-up

So, I finally watched the gameplay video of Read Dead Redemption II over the weekend… Mostly as an outside fascination sort of thing (the amount of options looks too overwhelming for me to get into), but one thing that really struck me was how much the gang mechanics reminded me of Ys VIII: Lacrimosa Of Dana, having just finished that recently on Switch. At first the castaway village in that was pretty lame, but the more I got into it the more I really enjoyed getting to know all the characters and doing all the side activities there, which I imagine would be the case in Red Dead too.

Side note: Also watched the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Nintendo Direct; despite not having much experience in Smash, might have to get that one just for the sheer completeness of the work they’ve put in. I was very impressed. Strangely not overwhelmed by it like with Read Dead Redemption, despite not even knowing how it plays, how you do specials, etc.

Side note 2: Also watched the Doom Eternal gameplay, can’t wait!

Side note 3: All these video-watchings, plus a lovely outside, meant despite meaning to both start and finish Flipping Death on the weekend, I didn’t even get to start it up…!
Aelfin

GC: It seems surprising you’d be okay with Ys VIII but find the much more mainstream Red Dead too overwhelming.

 



Inbox also-rans

I would love Nintendo to do VR but not with the Switch. I’m pretty sure that must’ve just been an experiment and they realise they need more power. If only they’d team up with Valve!
Preston

Wait, Microsoft bought the people that made We Happy Few? But… why? Was there seriously no more deserving developer than that?!
Wotan

 



This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Franky, who asks what’s the one game annoucement you never expect to hear?

With Gamescom coming up next week what’s the one thing you’re confident won’t be revealed? Whether it’s a sequel, reboot, or some kind of hardware annoucement what do you think is the least likely, without being completely silly.

What annoucement have you given up any hope of hearing about and why do you think it’ll never happen? What’s the most surprised you’ve ever been by an annoucement and how did the final product turn out?

E-mail your comments to: gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 

The small print
New Inbox updates appear twice daily, every weekday morning and afternoon. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word 4Player viewer features at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

If you need quick access to the GameCentral channel page please use www.metro.co.uk/games and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Games Inbox: Doom Eternal reveal reaction, Rage 2 excitement, and Luigi’s Mansion 3

Doom Eternal - were you impressed?

Doom Eternal – were you impressed?

The morning Inbox thinks there should be a Microsoft Direct, as one reader has a very difficult decision to make in The Banner Saga.

To join in with the discussions yourself email gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 



Second game

Pretty impressed by what they’ve shown off about Doom Eternal so far. I was particularly keen on the mysterious concept art which I think might be meant to be heaven? Or are the aliens from Doom 3 part of the story? I can’t remember to be honest but I don’t think so.

I know GC had one of the lowest reviews for the game but while I do really like the reboot I have to agree that for a series that’s been going for 25 years it does seem like we’ve only ever had one game and just an endless series of remakes and re-dos. Even this one is basically the same set-up as Doom II, although admittedly it was hard to tell where that game was meant to be set just by looking at it.

So while I’m not normally someone that’s big on ‘lore’ and backstory and all that I hope they finally push things forward and do something brand new. Doom actually has a pretty weird set-up with portals to Hell on Mars and all that, I think there’s a lot they could do with it. You know, besides shooting imps in the face with a shotgun.
Ratso

 



Max power

Nice look at Doom Eternal by id but am I crazy but did Rage 2 actually look more interesting? I loved the reveal at E3 but was a bit worried it’d all turn out to be of a letdown in real-life, but all the open world and driving stuff is looking pretty special to me.

Considering how successful Far Cry is I’m surprised there aren’t more open world shooters and yet this one doesn’t seem like a clone or anything, plus I bet its gunplay is better than Ubisoft’s? Having played the Mad Max game I’m willing to bet the car driving is good too.

Okay, I realise I’m giving them the benefit of the doubt on a lot of things here – which is exactly how hype and disappointment works – but they’ve got me excited and interested. I hope I’m not let down now!
Jonti

 



Microsoft Direct

Bit late to the party here but I just watched the latest Nintendo Direct and I am seriously impressed by how well orchestrated it was. Those CGI scenes look amazing and as others have said it’s got me interested in a game I already know I don’t like (from playing the others) but which I’m genuinely considering as a sort of interactive museum.

Nintendo can be very backwards with a lot of things but I really think they’ve cracked it with these livestreams, to the point where I don’t understand why Sony and Microsoft don’t copy them. Sony at least have the PSX show in December but Microsoft never have any kind of annoucement event apart from E3.

You could argue that’s because they’ve never got anything to announce, but they used to and they never did it then. They will do in the future too, with all these new developers, so why not get into the swing now? Although I have a horrible feeling it’d be super slick and cheesy. There’s an almost amateurish feel to the Nintendo Directs, at least when the guys are talking, that feels very honest and down-to-earth.
Crips

 

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Withdraw symptoms

It’s strange that by the end of Dark Souls III I felt exhausted by the series and was glad they were bringing it to an end but it’s been a good few years now and I’m really missing me some Soulsborne goodness. Is Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice going to be at Gamescom, do you know GC? And will it be playable? There didn’t seem to be many previews from E3 but I’d be very interested to see what you think of it.

Is there a release date as well? It’s a game I basically don’t need to know anything about in order to know I’ll buy it, and there’s not many I’d say that about, but I would like to get a basic idea of the difficult and just what the mix is between (semi-)realistic and supernatural stuff. The second I hear about a collector’s edition though it’s pre-ordered.
Royston

GC: Yes, it’ll be playable at Gamescom and we’ve already got an interview lined up. The release date is ‘early’ 2019.

 



Legal complications

I think this situation with ROMs is a lot more complicated than some people are making out. At the end of the day these games are someone’s property and legal grey area or not you are pirating them. I mean, with Nintendo there’s no grey area at all: they not only regularly re-release their games they often incorporate them into other games like WarioWare and that 3DS collection I’ve forgotten the name of [NES Remix? – GC] so there’s no question at all that you’re taking money away from them by downloading the ROMs.

Obviously there are other games that are probably never coming back but I wouldn’t bet on which ones it would or wouldn’t be. And besides it’s Nintendo suing the sites so I don’t see they’ve got a leg to stand on. The sensible thing would’ve been to just not include Nintendo games and I bet they never would’ve got involved, but these people brought it on themselves really.
Rancher

 



Difficult decision

GC, you reignited my love for grid, turn-based strategy games with your excellent reviews for Fire Emblem: Awakenings and XCOM: Enemy Unknown. Both amazing games. I have very fond memories of Vandal Hearts on PS1 when I was a youngster.

I’ve read these pages since the Digitiser days and now feel the need to write in for the first time about The Banner Saga. A turn-based strategy game in a fantasy-based Viking world. I’m about halfway through and it’s right up there with the other games I’ve mentioned. Lovely art design and music which really pull you into the world.

I think you mentioned in your review (as a criticism) that having the majority of the dialogue in written format led to the game feeling like you were reading an eBook; which it does, but it’s in a way that makes you feel you’re reading a half decent fantasy novel, which is fully and amazingly interactive. I’ve never played a game where I’ve had to genuinely go make a coffee for five minutes to ponder my response to another character’s question. The feeling of weight to your choices is immense.

I have played on Switch and I understand the saves to the sequel carry over. However, I have the second one on Xbox (from Games with Gold). Is the continuation worth buying the second one on Switch, or should I just play my Xbox version? Cheers!
Whiskeyjack11 (gamertag)

GC: That’s tricky, because it involves paying for a game you’ve already got. But if you’re enjoying it that much we’d have to say that the way your decisions carry on is a key appeal, especially by the time you get to the third game. The retail-only Banner Saga Trilogy, which is out next month, might be your best bet for at least a minor discount.

 



Quite quiet

I don’t want to seem to be moaning at nothing but is anyone getting upset at how much noise their PlayStation 4 makes? I’ve got a Pro and the thing can be absolutely deafening at just the most random times. When playing a Blu-ray is weirdly one of the most common times for it to start off but it’ll also do it randomly halfway through a game or even when just sitting there virtually idle.

I get that it produces a lot of heat and so on but I have never even heard a PC make that much noise. It’s not just mine that’s broken is it? I’ve heard the Xbox One is a lot quieter? At this point I’m almost tempted to get the Xbox One X just for that.
Poultry

GC: It’s unlikely to be anything wrong with your machine, it’s a pretty common complaint. The Xbox One is impressively quiet, and noticeably better than any PlayStation model.

 

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

 



RIP Luigi

The recent Smash Bros. Ultimate Nintendo Direct has had me, amongst many others, speculating on the brutal ‘murdering’ of Luigi.

Some are convinced that perhaps the blurred image on the game modes menu suggest a ‘spirit’ campaign mode where perhaps the unlockable characters are in fact trapped in purgatory waiting to be released via completing ‘story mode’ levels making them available to the playable roster. Some analysts going as far to say that Simon Belmont’s moves list comprising of ‘holy water’ and projectile crosses further cementing the fact that characters are indeed temporarily evil, otherwise his moves set would have no effect on these long loved mascots.

I’m not so sure about this. However, judging by the prolonged focus on Luigi’s demise in the new trailer, I’m gonna go ahead and assume that maybe we’ve been given a glimpse at what could possibly be a new gameplay mechanic in a third Luigi’s Mansion game thats sees Luigi become a ghost as opposed to ‘fainting’ (as Nintendo would like to put it) turning the tables on Mario’s younger brother in his own game.

Of course this would open up possibilities of puzzle-solving, finding secret passages by passing through walls and such or simply an added depth during boss battles that require the player to defeat them in phases. Just a thought.
Bad Edit

GC: The Smash Bros. theories sound like nonsense, but we really like your ideas for Luigi’s Mansion 3. The second game is so underappreciated.

 



Inbox also-rans

I’ve just bought the brilliant King’s Edition of Ni No Kuni II for £50 from Game Collection. Was £160 when it released and the extras are worth every penny (includes the season pass worth £16 alone).
Redperil68 (gamertag/PSN ID)

Is Fortnite available on a Motorola C Plus? As it is Android after all. I would like to know this, please find out.
Anon

GC: Not for the beta, no. But they may expand the list of compatible devices once it moves to a full release.

 



This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Franky, who asks what’s the one game annoucement you never expect to hear?

With Gamescom coming up next week what’s the one thing you’re confident won’t be revealed? Whether it’s a sequel, reboot, or some kind of hardware annoucement what do you think is the least likely, without being completely silly.

What annoucement have you given up any hope of hearing about and why do you think it’ll never happen? What’s the most surprised you’ve ever been by an annoucement and how did the final product turn out?

E-mail your comments to: gamecentral@ukmetro.co.uk

 

The small print
New Inbox updates appear twice daily, every weekday morning and afternoon. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word 4Player viewer features at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

If you need quick access to the GameCentral channel page please use www.metro.co.uk/games and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Weekend Hot Topic, part 2: What country makes the best video games?

Grand Theft Auto V –what do you want from story DLC?

Grand Theft Auto V – as British as apple pie

GameCentral readers argue over where the best video games come from, and whether it’s America, Japan, the UK, or elsewhere.

The subject for this week’s Hot Topic was suggested by reader Onibee, who asked which country makes the majority of games you enjoy the most? Is it always obvious to you what country a game has been made in and do you make purchasing decisions based on that?

This proved to be a surprisingly decisive Hot Topic, with Japan easily winning the popular vote and only a few detractors claiming America or the UK as the best. Although many admitted they didn’t really know where most games came from before looking them up.

 



Best of British

I think the best country has to be the British gaming industry when I think about it, certainly at the moment. I’m looking at it in terms of consistency of quality. The US, Canada, and Japan make some amazing games but they also produce some not so good ones, whereas the UK from what I can remember only release very good to great games.

The UK has produced amazing games like the Grand Theft Auto series, Red Dead Redemption, the Batman: Arkham series, Football Manager, DmC, Hellblade, LittleBigPlanet to name just a few. Plus, we have a great indie scene and indie publishers like Team17.

From what I read in the press as well, it looks like the UK is at the forefront of VR technology. I just hope that the UK games industry continues to thrive, I know there are schemes in place to encourage game development like grants from the government, but I hope that Brexit doesn’t harm the industry.
Angry_Kurt (Twitter)

GC: Red Dead Redemption is a joint effort by all Rockstar studios, the original was led by Rockstar San Diego.

 



Learning from each other

Historically I’ve preferred the more open world and branching dialogue and consequences of Western games, than the more focused, linear, but nevertheless interesting offerings from Japan.

Increasingly though, with Western developers taking cues from Japan and Japanese developers looking at some Western games for inspiration, the divide is no longer as clear as it once was.

And I’m fine with that. I still think that you can recognize the style of games released from particular studios, rather than nationalities, and that’s just an inevitability of the increase in popularity and breadth of audience of computer games.

As long as we avoid a big homogeneous grouping where all games becomes open world pseudo-action role-playing games filled with icons, then I think we are good. And with the increasing rise of indies keeping AAA games honest, I don’t think there’s much risk of that.
Matt (he_who_runs_away – PSN ID)

 



Openly weird

To me Japan makes the best games. They are far more open to experimentation/weirdness (e.g. Katamari series, Catherine, Gal*Gun) than others, they don’t compromise or change their vision to appease those who may be put off and most importantly my taste has developed in a way that the style of games coming from Japan match exactly what I want; from anime style to high sexualisation to traditional gameplay in role-playing games. Those may be niche within a niche but it’s what I adore and they cater perfectly to that.

I’ll never use the criteria of where it was developed (country wise at least) in my purchasing decision though, if it looks good I’ll get it regardless of where it came from and feel that way for any medium, not just gaming.

As for the British gaming industry, to be honest, and to my shame I know very little about it, I know of Playtonic who made the wonderful Yooka-Laylee, Rare, and Guerrilla Cambridge who worked on Killzone Mercenary, but that is it. I had to look up game developers and not one rang a bell for me.

I’m talking more in terms of physical releases here though, I’m sure there are plenty of British indie developers making successful games but digital-only games aren’t for me at this time.
CerezoMask

GC: Sadly, Sony shut down Guerrilla Cambridge a while back.

 

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Genre masters

It really all depends on your favourite genre, but overall I’d cast my vote for the best game making country as Japan. Whichever genre you care for Japan has a world-beating entry. From Gran Turismo to Final Fantasy to Metal Gear to Street Fighter to Mario and Zelda, the country has produced the best gaming franchises throughout the years.

That’s not to say that the American industry hasn’t produced some classics but they tend to follow and iterate on the ideas from Japan more often than not and the quantity of classic games and franchises from Japan is definitely greater.

The thing that I like most about Japanese games is the quirky humour that slips into their games. Can you imagine a franchise like Katamari Damacy coming from any other country? Or the weird encounters in Yakuza? Or Metal Gear’s fourth wall breaking moments? And the final piece of evidence in Japan’s favour? …Persona 5.
Anon

 



East vs. West

Because of my passion for video games and keeping up to date with the latest news and developments, I feel that I’m usually aware of which country has produced a game (at least with non-indie titles) but I wouldn’t say it affects or determines whether I buy a game or not.

I’m torn as to which country produces the best games, in my eyes, but it’d have to be a toss-up between the countries mentioned in the Hot Topic description: Japan and USA.

Without trying to generalise (but failing), Japan produces some of the most colourful, vivid, and joyous games out there – think pretty much anything by Nintendo as well as your Ni No Kunis – while also doing a fantastic job of creating seminal games that go on to gain a cult following and become established series, with titles like Resident Evil, Metal Gear Solid, and Dark Souls.

I always associate America, rightly or wrongly, with the big hitting shooters or games as a service games like Call Of Duty, Destiny, and Anthem, which aren’t so much my thing. But it also produces some of my favourite games in recent times in Uncharted, The Last Of Us, God Of War, and I’m sure Spider-Man (I do see the clear theme of Sony, a Japanese company, emerging here too but these games are made in America, I believe, so I’m counting them as American!), as well as Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption titles.

I always think that the UK doesn’t produce many titles but then I remember that Rocksteady is British and the Batman: Arkham series is probably my favourite games series of all time. And then you’ve got Rare, Codemasters, and what seems like a very active UK indie scene. So I’d say we’re doing pretty well for ourselves. But of course I’d like to see more UK produced games hit the shelves, who wouldn’t?
Hubert

GC: Grand Theft Auto is made in Scotland (from girders), all the Sony games you mention are American though.

 



Mostly American

I’m going to be very curious to see the results of this Hot Topic as while most hardcore gamers will say Japan without question I don’t think you can ignore the fact that they’ve gone through a very rough time in the last decade and have only recently go their mojo back. But games like Persona 5, NieR: Automata, and almost everything that Nintendo do prove to me that their approach to gaming is still inherently more interesting than the developer farms at EA and Activision.

Ironically I think the best stuff coming out of the West at the moment is from Sony, where oddly their Japanese studio is the least accomplished this gen (I really didn’t like The Last Guardian). The work that Santa Monica Studio, Guerrilla Games, and Sucker Punch are doing at the moment is truly impressive and shows that Western companies can make original, ambitious games if they want. I just think most of the time they don’t want to. Why bother when they can make easy money elsewhere?
Goober

 

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

 



No preference

I’ll say that I played pretty much Japanese games the majority of the time for a good part of my early to near recent life, but when tastes change and I do not need to play with jumping plumbers and their karts anymore I leave them to go onto other things. The other thing is becoming a Western role-player fan more, as opposed to a Japanese one. Yes, endless unsatisfying level grinding can be time-consuming but really I did not even realise I was playing Western role-players more until my hours came into it.

The usual contenders like Elder Scrolls and Fallout were giving me fun without repetitive grinding and getting the perks and levels you achieved through exploring a world where you did not have to go out of your way but levelled up the fun way: by playing the game and exploring and not fighting 1,000 enemies to make your character hard enough to take on a boss or something.

Strategic gameplay can be used to take on a tough enemy instead of grinding or farming just to take on something that is way beyond my current level. For example, like putting a load of mines on the floor leading from said enemy’s lair and triggering the guy to come out. I’ll hide and just listen to the explosions and pain of the creature trying to hunt me down. I then reveal myself to it and put a shotgun shell through its head!

I would have said I mostly play American games and the odd British or Canadian game, with European companies for The Witcher 3. This does not leave much space for Japanese games really. But then Persona 5 comes out and redoing Bloodborne and – wait a sec it’s not Japanese games it’s just fantasy and sci-fi turn-based games and platformers from Japan. Persona 5, like 4, managed to get around this by bringing fun into it.

Let’s be honest here, I love both sides of the world’s games and I think the hours are pretty much getting equal again and I will continue to love the different styles, music, and gameplay till I can’t play no more. I have equal amount of fun and the only time this will change regarding hours is if something like Red Dead Redemption II comes out. It’s all quite natural really, and my preferences are based on the mood I am in and the current big thing to come out which excites me.
Alucard

 

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The small print
New Inbox updates appear twice daily, every weekday morning and afternoon. Letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word 4Player viewer features at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

If you need quick access to the GameCentral channel page please use www.metro.co.uk/games and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Weekend Hot Topic, part 1: What country makes the best video games?

Persona 5 (PS4) - modernising the JRPG

Persona 5 – not made in America

GameCentral readers argue over where the best video games come from, and whether it’s America, Japan, the UK, or elsewhere.

The subject for this week’s Hot Topic was suggested by reader Onibee, who asked which country makes the majority of games you enjoy the most? Is it always obvious to you what country a game has been made in and do you make purchasing decisions based on that?

This proved to be a surprisingly decisive Hot Topic, with Japan easily winning the popular vote and only a few detractors claiming America or the UK as the best. Although many admitted they didn’t really know where most games came from before looking them up.

 



Past masters

I think America and Europe excelled since the PlayStation 3/Xbox 360/Wii era and have continued to overall make more technically impressive games than Japan. Also, probably had better game sales too. Japan dominated the 8-bit to the 128-bit era of gaming. America and Europe have higher output of games that I really like but my favourite games always tend to be Japanese made, such as the Metal Gear Solid series, Team Ico trilogy, and Valkyria Chronicles. Japanese games tend to have a lasting impression on me.

I think the UK scene has been hindered slightly with talented designers leaving the country or studios getting closed down. Rocksteady and Rockstar North to me are the top UK developers and I am Ninja Theory fan waiting for Heavenly Sword 2.

I do believe there’s a difference between what’s best and what’s your favourite. In closing: Japan have made a great comeback this generation and still have made my favourite games this gen in Metal Gear Solid V and The Last Guardian.
RaidenMGS2

 



Fishy argument

I don’t understand how this answer can be anything other than Japan, even if your favourite game ever isn’t Japanese in origin. They just make too many all-time greats. And unless you’re very dumb, a troll, or are Phil Fish then you probably agree with that sentiment.

If your favourite game right now is The Witcher 3, it hardly qualifies Poland as being the best game producing nation, does it? One game?

True, the US has more classics: my favourite role-players tend to be Western with Undertale currently sitting on the top. But Persona 5 is just behind it. Here in Blighty we do have Rockstar, giving us Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption.

But Japan just has so very many. The Legend Of Zelda, Mario, Dark Souls, Persona, Devil May Cry, Bayonetta, Street Fighter, SoulCalibur, Bloodborne, and on and on that list goes. Their contenders for best game ever just so overwhelmingly outnumber everybody else’s that it’s almost scary. No, strike that, it is scary.

Though I suppose it’s quite telling that the best Sonic game yet made is American: Sonic Mania, that is. Well, for me.
DMR

 



Turning point

I’m honestly not sure what the last time was I played a Japanese game. I don’t think about it before picking one up but for me the American style of making games took over in the Xbox 360 era and has only been getting better since. I think the breakthrough was probably Oblivion, which was the first role-playing game I ever played properly – I genre I would never have touched previously when it was dominated by Final Fantasy and other games.

But I loved Oblivion and subsequently got into other American (or at least Western) games like Mass Effect and Fallout. Nowadays Forza is better than Gran Turismo, Metal Gear is finished, Sega is finished (and the only decent Sonic game recently wasn’t Japanese), and Japan has never really made online shooter.

I wouldn’t avoid their games on purpose though and have been fairly tempted by Monster Hunter: World and will almost certainly get Resident Evil 2. I’ve never been into Nintendo though, so I guess that cuts out a big part of the Japanese representation.
Syd

 

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Discovering Japan

This weekend’s Hot Topic made me realise how little I know about what games get made where, and by whom. So with that in mind, and after a good 11 minutes of research, I have decided that Japan is the best country at making games.

This is for a couple of reasons, the first of which is some of the more recent games I’ve played and enjoyed have come from Japan, which include Persona 5 and NieR: Automata. I also loved Bayonetta and the Dark Souls series, plus I have Bloodborne to play which is highly rated. Add to that Super Mario Odyssey and Zelda have managed near unanimous 10s across the board, so it seems like a country where good games get made.

Another reason is they seem to be more willing to take a risk on something a bit new or different (like NieR) and seem to take their time with games so the final product is polished. Also, they don’t seem to have much in the way of loot boxes or microtransactions, but again my knowledge is limited so this is the way things seem to me.

I don’t actually know who makes games in the UK or what big successes there have been of late so I’m clueless as to the current state of the British games industry. And as for the rest of the world the names that come to mind are EA in America and Activision in Europe. I dislike both of those companies based on the endless churning out of the same game year after year and a seeming obsession with money above all else. I know companies have to make a profit, and I’m not against them making money, but it seems like sheer greed, especially where EA are concerned.

I think what I’ll take away from this topic is that I don’t really know what gets made where and who by. So a good start would be when booting up a game for it to have nice and clearly stated who created the game and who published the game. A small step that would certainly help me keep better track of what developers I liked.
Torro

 



Dirty act

What puts me off of Japanese games is the creepy anime maids that seem to fill so many of the games. I know they’re often no more than window dressing but if I’m going to play a game I’d rather do it as an adult (ideally a customisable one) than a teenage girl in stockings or whatever.

I really don’t know why fans defend this kind of thing as it never adds to the game, it’s just to titillate pervy gamers (and to attract pervy non-gamers?).

Obviously not all Japanese games do this, you’d never see Nintendo stooping that low, but even big companies like Capcom and Sega do it occasionally. If they’d only clean up their act I think Japanese games would do a lot better. That SoulCalibur VI already looks like it hasn’t learnt a thing from the last two decades.
Penfold

 



Twin giants

I think The USA and Japan have got this market cornered – I see them as the Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi of video game production, respectively.

Very different, both capable of things the other isn’t, and both very, very good at what they do. I prefer to enjoy their work for what it is than take sides in both cases.
Charlie
PS: Golf Story on the Switch is amazing, the funniest game I’ve ever played.

GC: Golf Story is Australian.

 

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Worldwide hits

I’m afraid I must confess to not being the most knowledgeable gamer when it comes to knowing the precise country of origin of most of the games I own. Since there apparently aren’t enough hours in the day anymore, I don’t have time to Google them all either, but looking at my games collection I’d say there’s a roughly 4:1 split between what I guess you could call Western developed titles and Japanese made games. It’s never been a conscious choice, I just buy what I fancy.

My collection currently only goes back three generations (I do have a couple of Game Boy Color/Advance games actually, but mostly the GameCube is as far back as it goes). Stopping for a moment to look over them all brought back many, many, happy gaming memories from so many varied franchises and individual titles. I’d love to be able to go back to most of them for at least another run through too.

However, if I had to pick, I’d say that it’s Japan where my absolute favourites have been crafted, and most of those by just one particular company. Nintendo and their unrivalled attention to detail with Mario, Mario Kart, and specifically Zelda have consistently captivated my imagination for the best part of four decades now.

Whilst I don’t love Super Mario Odyssey as much as most, I still can’t deny it’s polish, and in Mario Kart 8 and Zelda: Breath Of The Wild they really have reaffirmed to me that there really isn’t anyone else out there better. I say that with no disrespect to the dozens of other first class developers out there who’s games I have enjoyed over the years and will hopefully continue to do so for many years to come.

It’s not perfect, and yes, I’m sure there’s still plenty of tosh out there but it really has felt that gaming has been on a massive upwards trend for years, certainly in terms of quality titles from across the board, both AAA and indie. And with things like Cyberpunk 2077 and Red Dead Redemption II on the way it doesn’t look like anyone’s going to be letting the side down any time soon.

It’s great to see so many developers from seemingly every country (literally?) raising their games. Now, if only I had enough time to devote to everything I’d actually like to play…
yourhomeisatrisk (PSN ID)

 

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