Games Inbox: Switch 2018 line-up, The Walking Dead Season 4, and Persona 6 expectations

Games Inbox: What will be the biggest Switch game of 2018?
Will Super Smash Bros. be back this year?

The morning Inbox remembers the best of GamesMaster and British games mags, as one reader is impressed by his first go on VR.

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

Best guess

I see there are some more rumours swirling around that Super Smash Bros. is going to be released this year for the Switch. Although there still doesn’t seem to be any agreement on whether it’s a full sequel or port or somewhere in between.

It seems to me pretty likely that it will be out this year though, which allows us to start guessing what Nintendo’s line-up is going to be like. Since, of course, they don’t seem to want to tell us themselves. There’s nothing major they’ve announced themselves, but they have mentioned a Fire Emblem game, so I can see that and Metroid Prime 4 being the main hardcore offerings this year.

Super Smash Bros. would be their main multiplayer game that appeals to both sides, and I think it’s very likely we’ll have Animal Crossing and the Yoshi game for casuals. That seems a lot, but it’s comparable to last year and I think if Nintendo can get all that out before the end of the year they will have done extremely well.

It’d be nice if there was a new franchises as well, but it may be Nintendo Labo that they’ve been concentrating on in that area. I’d expect at least one or two minor games that are brand new though, even if they’re just eShop downloads. What do you think? Does this seem doable?
KhyberChris

Final season

I am looking forward to Season 4 of The Walking Dead, and while there will be many episodes of this upcoming game I would like to ask everyone at GameCentral if they think Clementine and Michonne could meet each other in Season 4, which would be a great way to pay tribute to the Michonne episodes? It could, if Telltale games chose to do this, be a good way to see how Clementine and Michonne would interact and if possible form a team.

For those who have not seen the preview trailer, you can watch it here.

Once season 4 comes out I will most certainly be looking forward to when this comes out on disc, alongside series 1, 2, and 3 as well. When released it will be very interesting to see how each episode unfolds and what choices you will be able to make. Let’s hope we can see some returning characters that survived, like Lilly, Christa, and others.
gaz be rotten (gamertag)

Second chance

I’m very busy at the moment and haven’t written in a while, but I came across a shmup called Steredenn that you might have missed. It was released a while ago on PlayStation 4 and PC and is upcoming on Switch, in a version with many extras not in the original release. I haven’t played myself, but it looks like it could be decent and the addition of roguelike elements gives it a certain novelty.

As you often say about being made of aware of a game that has passed you by then maybe this will qualify. Here is the trailer for the original version.
Mr Verbosity

GC: That’s exactly the sort of tip-off that’s really useful. We’ve never heard of it before (probably because it sounds like something you’d use to clean false teeth) but we’ll keep an eye out for the Switch version.

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

All-in-one

So GamesMaster magazine is now 25 years old, I remember buying it but haven’t bought any magazines in a long time. They are overpriced these days, in my opinion, especially when demo discs are now a thing of the past. I remember buying some magazines just to get my hands on the demos to try out, while saving up for a full release.

The thing I like about GamesMaster the most is that its multiformat, and I could read about the games for all the systems rather than just one system’s games. My favourite games magazine was always the official Nintendo one though, and I remember when I finally decided to subscribe, rather than just pick up a copy, I received a free Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker T-shirt, which I was over the moon with.
R1CH5TER
PS: I agree with Cubes that £35 is a bit steep for Burnout Paradise. Especially as another reader Stuart Rick pointed out in the comments section, it’s already backwards compatible on Xbox One and was given away with Games with Gold previously. I had totally forgotten about that. I would just play the backwards compatible version now if I had the urge to play it.

Retroactive celebration

RE: Vic Viper on UK games magazines. Hear, hear! A very happy anniversary to GamesMaster magazine, and to think it was only a spin-off from the TV show. And speaking of Dave Perry, I believe the Retro Hour did a fascinating interview with him a year or so back.

The UK games magazine industry is something quite special in my opinion, and it’ll be sad to see it go. It seems that enough of us invest in print journalism to see a fair few titles still around today though. In a way I wish my preferred outlets were still Edge, etc., but these days it’s you guys for reviews and big American sites for features and podcasts.

When do you generally consider your ‘birth’ to be, GC? Does it spiritually hark back to Digitiser? The relaunch on Teletext, or Metro? And any anniversary plans? It’s been quite a journey for this publication as much as any.
Owen Pile

GC: According to Wikipedia, Digitiser started on 1 January 1993. So New Year’s Day just gone was apparently the 25th anniversary. None of the current team were involved back then, but by happy coincidence we were drunk that day anyway, so huzzah!

Under the magnifying glass

It may just be my age, and a sign that I need to purchase some glasses, but when playing on the Switch in handheld mode does anyone else struggle to read text and interpret icons? Dragon Quest Builders is no problem on my 65″ OLED screen, but a strain on the Switch one.

It wouldn’t be such an issue were it not for the fact I bought Dragon Quest Builders as it seems like the perfect game to play on the go. They either need to add a magnifying glass tool or, a better solution, develop another Advance Wars, the only game you need on the go.
Luma

GC: It does depend on the game. Some are clearly not designed with the smaller screen in mind, particularly indie titles originally intended for the PC and multiformat ports like Dragon Quest Builders. Although we can’t say we’ve found any of them unplayable.

Unknowable gap

I know there are a lot of Persona 5 fans on here, so dare I be the first to ask the question: when will Persona 6 be announced? I know there was a long gap between the last two, but I assumed that was kind of an accident that got out of control. Surely they’d be looking to follow up the success of the new game as quickly as possible? Even if that takes two or three years?

I’d much rather that than just a load of spin-offs.
Bushido

GC: It was almost a decade between Persona 4 and 5, so it really is impossible to say. We’d imagine it won’t be that long again, but who knows.

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

First step into a larger world

Today was a day of firsts for me. Firstly, I visited a gaming centre and secondly I had my first go on VR, and both were really good.

I will be doing a Reader’s Feature on the gaming centre called Game On in Blandford, Dorset in the coming weeks but just to say what a marvellous facility. The centre has a number of gaming PCs, Xboxes, and retro consoles, and a PC dedicated to Oculus Rift. This is a new venture, so if you’re in or around the area pop in you won’t be disappointed I wasn’t.

So, VR. I have been very sceptical about VR. I have been burnt many times by the latest gaming trends and thought this was going to be the latest, so I’ve steered clear. But I will have to eat some of my words after trying Oculus Rift. I played Spider-Man. I was suitably impressed. The resolution is not that great but the way it works is superb.

I won’t be rushing out to buy one just yet though. It’s still a few years away from being the finished article and being a glasses wearer it did feel a bit uncomfortable after a while, but I think I can safely say it’s going to be here for a long time!

Keep up the good work GC.
Dirtystopout

GC: Good for you, we look forward to the feature.

Inbox also-rans

Will you be putting up early impressions of Metal Gear Survive before your review?
Dan

GC: Yes, okay: meh.

Oh great, now Donald Trump is going to try and ban violent video games. Does anyone get the feeling that the world is just going crazy?
Golphen

This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Gannet, who asks what do you think is the most overrated video game?

You don’t have to think the game is actively bad, just not as good as its reputation suggests. But do try and describe exactly why it didn’t live up to your expectations and what it got wrong. Was it just a good game that was hyped up too much, or do you feel it has flaws that were brushed over in reviews?

Was the problem that you were expecting it to be one thing and it turned out to be something completely different? Or was there some other personal preference that meant you couldn’t enjoy it?

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: Rockstar Games and sci-fi, The Witcher remasters, and a plea for Killzone 5

Games Inbox: Should Rockstar Games do a sci-fi game?
Red Dead Redemption II – would space cowboys be just as good?

The morning Inbox thinks that racing games have got to complicated, as one reader suggests another Turok reboot.

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

Red Dead in space

We all know that GTA V is still selling by the bucketload, which means a new game is probably still a long way off, but I do wish Rockstar would use all their masses of cash to make other games. Ever since GTA Online became such a success they’ve basically slowed to crawl and even the one game they are doing has been delayed again and again.

I’m looking forward to Red Dead Redemption II as much as anyone, but it is still a sequel. Given how talented they are I’d like to see Rockstar try their hand at the one genre of film they’ve never really touched: sci-fi.

I don’t know whether they’ve been purposefully avoiding this or not, but I feel a gritty space-based drama would be right up their street. It wouldn’t even need to have aliens in it or anything, but maybe a sort of frontier feel with settlers – maybe even kind of like Red Dead in a way. It would allow them to do their social commentary and get a bit more imaginative with vehicles and gadgets. Stuff like Mass Effect is great but it’s also really nerdy. I’d like to see a cool sci-fi game, from someone you wouldn’t usually expect.
Gonch

Simply complicated

I agree with the reader who said that the earlier Burnouts were the best, although my personal favourite is Burnout 2. The question was raised recently of why driving games aren’t popular anymore and I think it’s pretty simple: they’re too complicated.

Either you have to faff around in an open world just to get to and start a race or the game itself is filled with tons of requirements and grinding and role-playing style nonsense. I don’t want any of those things. I want to pick a race and start it instantly in a car I know has a fighting chance, that’s it.

I think a game could do very well if it just offered that sort of no frills experience and purposefully didn’t try to make itself look too epic. Of course I want the racing and the graphics to be as good as possible but everything else around it…. couldn’t care less. Worse than that it puts me off. Need For Speed should’ve taken its name a bit more literally, it’s not Need For Grinding or Need For Cut Scenes!
Sparepart

Same old humans

So I see that the Turok reboot from 2008 is coming to Xbox One backwards compatibility. It’s rubbish, I know, but it’s yet another reminder that we are not getting enough dinosaurs in games. Or any really. I know there’s a lot of other Inboxers that feel passionately about this, but I just don’t understand it. Especially given Jurassic World 2 is coming out and they’ve actually discovered a lot of cool new dinosaurs lately.

I’m sure the Turok licence could be picked up for the price of a bag of chips lately, but even that’s not really necessary. I just feel that games are becoming a bit too predictable at the moment with their settings and particularly enemies. I’m really sick of fighting just humans with machineguns, or human-looking aliens, or whatever.

Maybe it’s because of the death of horror games as well, but I jus don’t find myself being surprised by games so much. I think we’ve all got a bit too obsessed with open worlds and landscapes too. All that’s important, but I want monsters goddamit! And dinosaurs, as everyone knows, are the best monsters.
Silva

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

The first Witchers

Since we’ve been discussing remasters a lot lately it got me thinking about CD Projekt RED. They said they’re not planning to do another The Witcher any time soon, but I wonder whether they’d consider remasters of the first two games? I understand they’re quite different to the third one, but the first is still PC only and the second was only ever on Xbox 360.

I for one would be interested in seeing how the series started off, and learning more of everyone’s backstories. I tried reading the novels the games are based on, but to be honest they didn’t really grab me and I found them pretty hard going.

It’s strange to think that one of the most beloved games of recent years had two come before it that most people have never played unless they have a gaming PC. I’ve never heard them talk about doing such a thing but I’d pre-order it tomorrow if it happened.
Petro

Shadow rises

I know I’m probably going to be alone in this, but personally I’d rather see a Killzone 5 from Guerrilla Games rather than another Horizon Zero Dawn. I didn’t hate Horizon or anything but I did get bored of it after a few hours and found the combat very repetitive.

Killzone has always been very uneven, I’ll admit, but I thought with Shadow Fall it was finally coming into its own again. I liked the more open world approach they were going for and would love to have seen that expanded, taking what they’ve learnt with Horizon and creating and even better shooter.

Something that can have a bit more imagination in terms of guns and vehicles and mech suits and that type of thing. Robot dinosaurs sounds cool at first until you realise you’re always fighting them with a bow and arrow.
Lifton

Engaging combat

As someone who revels in mastering deep and novel combat systems in Japanese role-playing games I was initially deflated to find Xenoblade Chronicle 2’s fighting model a tad too simplistic and one-dimensional for my liking.

But after around 15 hours and a bunch of new features which have added more layers and nuance to the martial madness, the combat is finally beginning to blossom into something bold and beautiful.

I’m appreciating the rich, synergistic systems between the drivers and blades far more now. And enjoying building up momentum in the battles by using the various arts, blade combos, modifiers, as well as filling up the chain link meters.

It’s a riveting and engaging sequence of actions which crescendo into an explosive and visually stunning concerted attack – once you’ve smashed the enemies’ elemental orbs and unleashed the special finisher.

The sheer robustness of the battles and sense of spectacle is frequently a sight to behold too. So glad the whole things clicking and flourishing for me now, I shouldn’t have doubted Monolith Soft’s work here. Especially after the brilliant combat model in Xenoblade Chronicles X!
Galvanized Gamer

Free tour

I wanted to drop a line reminding everyone that the free tour guide update is live now for Assassin’s Creed Origins. I only picked it up a few weeks ago and have loved it. By far the best AC in my opinion.

In fact, I love it so much that I went and bought Assassin’s Creed Syndicate with all the DLC in a recent Xbox sale. Let’s just say it’s a reminder that they left a year between sequels. The controls feel very clunky and counterintuitive compared to Origins, and although it’s not awful I’ll have to force myself to finish it.
Neil Howarth

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

Seven-year itch

On the topic of getting through back logs, I’ve made real progress with the games I have sitting there waiting to be played. Over the last week, being off work enabled me to finish off Darksiders and get through Darksiders II, I also finished off Resident Evil – Code: Veronica. Code: Veronica is one of my favourite Resident Evil games but I kept putting it on the backburner for games I hadn’t played. I noticed the last achievement I unlocked was in 2012, the first being in 2011. So I’ve taken seven years to get round to completing the Xbox 360 version, but I’m glad I got back to it.

On Darksiders I would say I definitely preferred the first game more, it flowed much better with its more compact, linear set-up and I liked the character War more than Death. The second game’s open world approach doesn’t seem warranted to me, as all you do is travel vast open spaces with nothing really worthy of note. So I think the set-up of the first game should have been kept. I’d never played these games until recently but now I have I will be keeping an eye on Darksiders III, with a potential day one purchase.

I’ve currently got to finish Horizon Zero Dawn: The Frozen Wilds, which I’m working on at the moment, but other than that I have Assassin’s Creed Origins, Duke Nukem 3D: World Tour, Resident Evil 5 HD, and The Elder Scrolls Online to get through. So not too bad really, but I don’t help myself and I know others can relate. I recently picked up Prototype 1 and 2, and Kingdoms of Amalur, for Xbox 360 whilst out one day with not having played them before and having heard good things about them, so now have those to add to the list.
R1CH5TER
PS: I was picturing Manta Force but could only think of the name Venom. This must be down to me having the Manta Force Red Venom when I was younger.

Inbox also-rans

Just a quick heads up to say The Sexy Brutale is £7.39 in a PSN Sale. I’ve just bought it as I read GameCentral’s review and because I like Gregory Horror Show on the PlayStation 2, which it is supposed to be similar to.
Andrew J.

GC: We strongly recommend the game at any price, it was one of last year’s best titles.

While having a look through the EA sale on Xbox Live I found Titanfall 2 Deluxe Edition for £8.70, absolute bargain for a great game.
TotalChud (gamertag)

This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Gannet, who asks what do you think is the most overrated video game?

You don’t have to think the game is actively bad, just not as good as its reputation suggests. But do try and describe exactly why it didn’t live up to your expectations and what it got wrong. Was it just a good game that was hyped up too much, or do you feel it has flaws that were brushed over in reviews?

Was the problem that you were expecting it to be one thing and it turned out to be something completely different? Or was there some other personal preference that meant you couldn’t enjoy it?

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: PS4 unveiling 5-year anniversary, Burnout Paradise Remastered, and Halo 6 hopes

Games Inbox: Do you remember the PS4 unveiling five years ago this week?
Has it really been five whole years?

The morning Inbox wonders if Insomniac will ever make a Resistance 4, as one reader is very impressed by a Jet Set Radio tribute album.

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

Grand unveiling

Never mind Star Fox, I’ve got another anniversary for you. It’s five years to the day since the PlayStation 4 was unveiled! Obviously it’s didn’t come out until November, but this was the week that Sony first announced it, although if memory serves they didn’t actually show the box (which always seemed weird, because it turned out to be… just a box).

I think it’s fair to say that things have gone well with Sony since then, although like many I attribute their success more to Microsoft’s own unveil event later in the year. It is crazy to think that it’s going to be five years this Christmas though and that some generations have barely lasted that long in their entirety. It’s gone so quick, but I put that down to the first two years being so weak with too few proper next gen games.

The obvious question then is when Sony announces a PlayStation 5, especially as it seems sales of the PlayStation 4 have peaked – if only just. Personally I give it two years tops before Sony starts dropping hints at least. And I do expect it to be a proper next generation console and not a PS4 Pro Plus.

Will that one be online-only perhaps? I could see that happening. I bet it’ll emphasis streaming as well, maybe cloud computing too if that actually does become a thing. It should definitely come with a PlayStation VR 2, which I would be all for. So I don’t agree that there’s no need for one, even if the improvement in graphics is slowing.

As an Xbox 360 owner who switched to PlayStation 4 I’ve been very happy with the machine and I reckon the next next generation is already Sony’s to lose.
Vlad64

Faster than a speeding accountant

Very glad to see Burnout Paradise Remastered confirmed, but I’ve gotta say it’s almost a little scary to see how quickly EA react to trouble. They knocked Star Wars: Battlefront II’s loot boxes on the head before the game was even out and they’ve set-up this remaster just months after Need For Speed Payback crashed and burned.

Now I know a remaster doesn’t take as long as a full game, obviously, but March seems awful quick to me. Does that mean they commissioned it before Payback came out and they were expecting it to flop? Talk about having faith in your own product!

I know it never made sense for them to have two street racing series going at the same time but I always thought Burnout was the better of the two, and now that Need For Speed is dead I hope the true challenger can prove itself.
Cranston

Children of all sizes

The more I hear about Nintendo Labo the more I’m convinced it’s going to be huge for them. I know I will definitely be getting the Variety Kit at least for my girl, as she’s already fascinated by the Switch and I think this will blow her mind. My concerns, like everyone I suppose, is whether the cardboard will break too easily, but I guess there’s only one to find out on that.

I do like the idea of being able to customise the toys, and the ones they did at the event you went to are super cute. Basically it seems like a mix of Lego, video games, and just craftwork. Which seems like a great thing for stimulating kid’s minds (and upsetting hardcore gamers).

I’m not so sure about the robot though, just because it’s more expensive but only one thing, that seems to have less uses. I’m also not clear how it works with people of different sizes. Do you have to swap and replace parts with different sized people?
Danson

GC: The length of the straps are changed by wrapping or unwrapping the cord that connects to the pulleys. It’s super low tech but it seemed to work fine, to the point where we were using exactly the same set-up as a little kid.

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

Lost in the PS3 era

I too am curious to see what Sony will come up with for this E3 and beyond, but I think that they’re in a better position than Nintendo because they haven’t burnt through their big names as quickly. I’d still be really happy to see a new WipEout, Ratchet & Clank, and LittleBigPlanet.

The one I wonder about though is Resistance. I know it wasn’t super popular last gen but I really liked the last game and feel another could really be something special. Now I come to think of it it’s mostly the PlayStation 3 era games that haven’t lasted, as I don’t expect we’ll be seeing anymore inFamous or Killzone games either.

Not so much worried about them, but I would like more Resistance.
Coulson

GC: Developer Insomniac are currently working on the new Spider-Man game, so it’d be a long time till they’d be able to come out with anything else. And even then we’d expect more Ratchet & Clank over Resistance.

Old school chief

I can certainly sympathise with the reader saying that his love of Halo has been burned out of him by the last few sequels. The worst thing is with what Bungie are doing to Destiny I’m not sure wishing them back would be any better anyway (not that they would return, I suspect).

My only hope for Halo 6 is that it goes back to basics and out of its way not to play like other modern games. The problem with the multiplayer in the last couple is that you could just tell someone went around trying to see what ideas from Call Of Duty, and Battlefield, and whatever could be sneaked in round the edges and now the whole thing has lost its sense of identity.

And then they went and messed up The Master Chief Collection and I don’t whether younger gamers even realise how big Halo used to be. I’d love for it to be the definitive console shooter again, but I honestly don’t know if 343 have got it in them…
Drepper

Much ado about nothing

I would just like to add more praise for Firewatch. Although I can understand GC’s perspective with their review I definitely think is a game worth picking up. The visuals of the American wilderness, especially the lighting is great. The tension and sense of being vulnerable in an isolated wilderness is palpable. Most of the reviews I have read which gave the game less than stellar reviews seem due to the reviewer’s disappointment with the ending. I appreciate the ending is not quite what the game initially seems to be presenting but I thought it was rather moving.

The player does come across items and areas which add to the backstory of those whose tragic tale becomes the narrative driving force at the end of the game. As it has been a while since I played the game I cannot be sure of this but I wonder if they were sometimes off the beaten track (Firewatch is a mini open world but quite expansive) which GC might have missed. Either way I recommend the game to those with combat fatigue or those who like ominous, tense games but do not want to soil their pants with fear (thanks Resident Evil 7).
Lord Leaping Lynx
PS: I really enjoyed the weekend feature on the Kingdom Come: Deliverance programmer. I managed to avoid this and the Gamergate scandal. It has only enhanced my view that social media sucks and comments sections should be struck from all websites. To quote from a Day Today sketch from a newsreader, ‘Your comments are in and they’ve been described as ‘tedious, boring and stultifying ill-informed’ so thanks for that’.

GC: It’s not so much the ending itself as the fact that the game sacrificed all the set-up and mid-game revelations in favour of another far less interesting plot twist. The storytelling techniques were excellent, and yet we found the story itself very unsatisfying.

Any port in a storm

I have to admit I’m getting increasingly confused as to the difference between a port, a remaster, and a remake. Especially as some sites seem to be using the words almost at random. I thought a port was like a conversion and was like moving a game to another format without changing anything.

But something like Bayonetta 2 seems to be in a kind of grey area where it’s mostly the same but does have some improvements. So I guess that’s why you called it a remaster. Can you clarify?
Brundlefly

GC: Like most things there isn’t any hard and fast rule but a port is supposed to be exactly the same game, just working on another system. A remaster is the original game but modernised in some way – usually by increasing the resolution, frame rate, or improving some of the textures or object models. A remake is something created almost from scratch to resemble the original but featuring all new graphics and controls.

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

Video game connection

I need access to the hive mind for identifying an old toy I used to have. Well, two to be precise. It was one of those Max Skull-type toys – you know, Polly Pocket but for boys. There was a Star Fleet-style spaceship base for the human good guys where it was a ship that opened up, had other little ships inside and tiny, plastic dudes. Need to have them tiny, plastic dudes.

But the villainous, alien version was more interesting. It had this neon green play dough that was meant to be acid and green, gloopified humans who had fell victim to the stuff. I was always cautious to touch it as I thought it might melt me too. Still not sure it won’t after twenty-plus years. Maybe it’s very slow-acting, okay!?

Inside and out it looked like some sci-fi horror land of mutant vegetation. I also remember a purple lid that vaguely looked like a heater shield and it had a scary looking ‘S’ inside a circle engraved on it. Hopefully this jogs someone’s memory. Because this has been annoying me for ages now.
DMR

GC: Do you mean Monster Max? For which there was an excellent Game Boy tie-in by renowned 8-bit developers John Ritman and Bernie Drummond (with music by David Wise)?

Inbox also-rans

Count me in as another person that is really loving Celeste. It always amazes me that these little indie games that look like they had a budget of 2p are much better at telling a story then something with a gazillion dollar budget. (I admit I may have exaggerated in both directions a bit there.)
Bane

Since it was mentioned a few days ago I’d just like to make readers aware of this Jet Set Radio tribute album. If there’s ever a sequel I hope they come straight to this guy for the soundtrack. You can listen to it here.
Fancy Dan

This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Gannet, who asks what do you think is the most overrated video game?

You don’t have to think the game is actively bad, just not as good as its reputation suggests. But do try and describe exactly why it didn’t live up to your expectations and what it got wrong. Was it just a good game that was hyped up too much, or do you feel it has flaws that were brushed over in reviews?

Was the problem that you were expecting it to be one thing and it turned out to be something completely different? Or was there some other personal preference that meant you couldn’t enjoy it?

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: Best spring video games, Super Mario Galaxy remaster, and Dynasty Warriors 9 hate mail

Games Inbox: What spring video game are you most looking forward to?
Ni No Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom – will it be a hit this spring?

The morning Inbox tries to imagine the next generation of video game controller, as one reader recommends Firewatch on cheap.

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

The spring rush

It might be a bit quiet at the moment for new releases, but by the end of March I see we’re going to be right in the thick of it again, with Sea Of Thieves, Far Cry 5, Yakuza 6, and God Of War. The one I’m most looking forward to though is Ni No Kuni II. I absolutely loved the first one and all the previews, including yours, have been very positive.

The way I see it this will be a final prof of whether Japanese games have been accepted back by the mainstream, and if a game as obviously Japanese as this (I do agree they should’ve probably changed the name) can be successful then I think we really will have turned the corner.

I’m a little worried it’s sandwiched between Sea Of Thieves and Far Cry 5, which probably have much bigger marketing budgets, but I’m hopefully it can still be a hit. It certainly looks more interesting than any Final Fantasy game has been for years, but really the more games that are different from each other that can be successful the better!
Wotan

Super remaster bros.

Been playing Super Mario Odyssey recently. For me personally I think Super Mario Galaxy 2 is the better game. There doesn’t seem to be the extra wow factor that Galaxy 2 had when I first played Odyssey. Apart from Jump Up Superstar, the music isn’t as good as Galaxy either in my opinion. Also, I have a real problem with the humans in New Donk City, it just doesn’t go. Why didn’t Nintendo make the people look stylised?

I am not sure of anyone else but I wouldn’t mind a remastered/rereleased version of both Galaxy games, but at a budgeted price of £20. This could fill out a barren release schedule. Would it be possible? Do the Joy-Cons have pointers? Similar to the Wii remote.
Alek Kazam

GC: The right one has an infrared depth sensor, but we’re not sure if it could be used in the same way. But then Galaxy’s use of the pointer is pretty trivial. What is impossible though is the idea that Nintendo would remaster both games and only charge £20 for them.

Keeping pace with technology

I knew that Secret Of Mana remake was a wrong ‘un the second I saw the first screenshot. I swear that series is cursed, the way Square Enix treat it. The first one (okay, technically it’s a sequel!) is fantastic and they’ve never managed to follow it up with anything even halfway decent. Especially not now.

I have very fond memories of playing through the original with my mate, and while I’m sure it does all seem very repetitive now I would’ve been fine if the graphics had stayed tip-top. I think that’s a lot of the problems with these retro inspired games. They forget that at the time the graphics that seem so simple and cute to us now where the best you do at the time. So unless the remake also has the best graphics possible it’s not a straight comparison.

I haven’t played it, but I imagine that’s why Shadow Of The Colossus works but this doesn’t. Maybe Secret Of Mana will have better luck on its 30th anniversary (it won’t).
Infinitman

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

Fire sale

After this weekend’s Hot Topic and many people advising they have less time to game, and big games can be off-putting, I just wanted to recommend Firewatch to those who want a great story driven game that doesn’t take forever to finish. It’s also currently £6.40 on Xbox, or was on Friday when I purchased it. I bought it on a recommendation from a friend and really enjoyed it.

As the name suggests the character you play as, has the job of keeping a look out for wild fires so hot shots can burn the area to stop it spreading, although the game doesn’t really have you doing this. You have contact with a woman on walkie-talkie who will send you on errands to scout areas, and investigate sightings from the towers. I’m probably not that good at selling the game to you, but recommend you give it a try

Here is GC’s review if you missed it first time around.
R1CH5TER
PS: I actually liked the story and agree the storytelling is very good.

GC: We’re not sure our review is going to sell it to anyone either. But at £6.40 you can’t really go wrong.

Complex issue

Hopefully this doesn’t come across as too crazy but when people were talking about real-time strategy games it made me think of a problem I’ve often wondered about: how restricted we are in games to the controllers we use. Many consoles players don’t really realise but a mouse and keyboard is much more accurate than a controller and when you get to a strategy game, or anything with a cursor, a joypad is almost useless.

But surely there’s got to be something even better than that? Something with the versatility of a mouse and keyboard but the accessibility of a gamepad? It’s often said that it’s the twin sticks on a controller that put off casual gamers the most so I’m surprised that nobody has ever tried to get away from that.

I suppose Nintendo did with the Wii remote, but that technology was nowhere near good enough to be a complete replacement. I know Microsoft are rumoured to be working on some sort of AR headset but I’d love it if they hadn’t completely given up on Kinect and were instead doing some kind of next gen controller that combined the best of everything. Something you could use like Minority Report, but still had some feedback because you’re actually holding something.

I think people forget that it’s not the complexity of games that puts ordinary people off them, but the complexity of the controller.
Pancakebill

Numberwang

I know you guys are one of the few outlets that use the full 10-point scale for reviews, without prejudice, which is great.

Does each score relate to a one-word description either officially or unofficially? Something like:

10/10 – Legendary
9/10 – Incredible
8/10 – Great
7/10 – Good
Etc.

Have you dabbled with other scoring systems in the past or would you consider changing it in the future?
OTTAPPS

GC: It’d probably work out as something like that, yes. We’ve never really thought of using any other system though. Percentages are too arbitrary and out of five has always seemed too simplistic.

All or nothing

I can understand why people are starting to get a bit antsy about what Nintendo has planned this year but, as if it needed saying, I really don’t think there’s any point getting worried. Last year showed they understand what they needed to do, and I think they only way they make a mistake this year is if they just don’t have the capacity to make any more great games.

I don’t think they’d be stupid enough to put all their top game makers on Labo, or to just think they can by on what they’ve already got out. So either they can’t make any more or they’re just being their usual secretive self. I mean, their E3 stand looks as big as ever and they can’t be using that for just Labo as it’ll already be out by then. That’s my guess anyway.
Lumpy

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

One size fits one

It doesn’t seem to get talked about much on here, but I would just like to say that I think Ubisoft are handling Rainbow Six Siege very well and I’m not surprised to hear it’s had a sort of second wind and they’re now going to keep it going for years (although I agree 10 is probably pushing it).

The basic gameplay is already spot on and the graphics are already good so in that sense there’s no need for a sequel. You need new modes and characters sure, but that’s what these updates are adding and I’m more than happy to stick around for it.

But for me this just illustrates that every game has got to tackle these problems separately, according to what suits them best. The problem with the games industry (and everything really, I guess) is that everyone just goes around copying whatever the last successful thing was and never tries to get ahead of the game themselves. Ubisoft’s plan for Rainbow Six works for that game but not necessarily any others. That should be the lesson companies are taking away: don’t copy, innovate!
Alex Stewart

Inbox also-rans

Personally, I’m glad GC reviews Dynasty Warriors, and all the other rubbish games. Those reviews are often the funniest. Did anyone write in with hate mail for you on this one?
Vigo

GC: They didn’t actually, which must be a first. It seems even hardcore fans don’t like that one.

Am I the only that doesn’t really like The Witcher 3? I hear it being talked about as this all-time classic but I don’t like that I can’t change the character and the combat is rubbish.
dubs2

This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Gannet, who asks what do you think is the most overrated video game?

You don’t have to think the game is actively bad, just not as good as its reputation suggests. But do try and describe exactly why it didn’t live up to your expectations and what it got wrong. Was it just a good game that was hyped up too much, or do you feel it has flaws that were brushed over in reviews?

Was the problem that you were expecting it to be one thing and it turned out to be something completely different? Or was there some other personal preference that meant you couldn’t enjoy it?

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: Nintendo Switch in 2018 worries, Age Of Empires IV on Xbox, and ARMS love

Games Inbox: Are you worried about the Switch’s 2018 games line-up?
Are you worried about its second year?

The morning Inbox tries to play name that game from a very vague description, as one reader complains about a lack of Sony innovation.

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

One-year wonder

Do we have any idea when the next Nintendo Direct is going to be? I know it was inevitable that the Switch would have a quiet spring, since there was nothing much announced for this period last year, but I am getting worried that the whole year is going to be a bit of a non-event for them. They seem to be putting a lot of effort into these cardboard Labo things, but as good as they might be they’re not video games and not the reason I bought the console.

The only triple-A game we know’s coming out at the moment is Metroid Prime 4, which his fine but it’s not guaranteed for this year and I very much doubt it’s going to be a mainstream hit. I’m sure there is a secret or two yet to come, probably including Animal Crossing, but I have a creeping worry that the Switch is going to be a one-year wonder.

Maybe things will improve next year, which his presumably the point at which them realising it was a hit will catch up with themselves but it wouldn’t surprise me if 2018 ended up being a bit of a wash. Although you could argue maybe that’ll be the case with all the console manufacturers, especially with Red Dead Redemption II destined to dominate at Christmas.
Meditator

GC: There’s no hint as to when the next Direct will be, and there rarely is until a few days beforehand.

Golden age

Sony burst onto the scene with the original PlayStation, it was aimed at teenagers and young adults. From launch day you could play an arcade perfect version of Ridge Racer and Battle Arena Toshinden was unlike any beat ‘em-up I played previously.

Over the next few years we were treated to a consistent supply of unique games such as Jumping Flash, WipEout, Loaded, Destruction Derby, PaRappa The Rapper, and Metal Gear Solid. The PlayStation 2 continued with the same strategy, I felt that Sony satisfied my need for a wide variety of game genres unlike what was available on other consoles. Listening to music CDs while you play around with the interactive graphical demos found in Official PlayStation Magazine was a cool feature.

Fast forward by about 20 years and I don’t see the same Sony, I don’t see a wide variety of games, they seam less creative. They are stuck in a continual loop of making third person action games. I miss the PlayStation glory days.
Mr Spacefoxy

Eyeballs and teeth

I’m trying to find an arcade game I used to play at the dentist many years ago, but can’t remember what it was called. It was a table-top but don’t know if it was exclusive to this format. You had to clear a screen of enemies and you could move anywhere on the screen as the walls closed in.

When you finished the level it would create an exit at the top and bottom for you to go through. The only enemy I can remember was an eyeball that bounced around. Any help would be appreciated.
Neil

GC: That doesn’t seem much to go on, but perhaps a reader can help. There were very few table-top only games, so that’s probably not significant.

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

Age of PC

In response to Olliephant’s question about real-time strategy games not being as prominent anymore. I think the major issue they have on consoles is it can be a lot to manage without a mouse and keyboard whereas turn-based strategy is much easier to control with a controller.

There may be some hope though, as it has been announced that Age Of Empires IV is in the works. Which is good news for PCs at least.
KeeganatotPrime (PSN ID)

GC: It’s not impossible, but there’s nothing so far to suggest that Age Of Empires IV is coming to Xbox One. We’ll have a review of the remaster of the first one later this week, but that is definitely PC-only.

Currently unavailable

RE: Aelfin. While I’m not sure if it’s on the Apple or Google stores now, I’ve had Chu Chu Rocket on my mobile for years (currently running on my work Note 8, my iPhone X and my iPad). Any time I change my phone I re-download it from my apps rather than searching, hence the reason I’m unsure about availability.

On another note, I think Sea of Thieves is going to sell by the truckload regardless of quality or longevity. With my reasoning being that I have little interest in it, but will buy it simply because so few exclusives are being released for Xbox I’ll literally buy anything to justify keeping it. And I think many others will feel the same.
Mr.Saveloy

In response to the reader that wrote in about Chu Chu Rocket. They actually made a mobile version of the game in 2010. Sadly, it’s been removed from the app store since 2015.
KeeganatorPrime (PSN ID)

Reselling on

I’ve just upgraded to a PS4 Pro and it came with a new sealed game of FIFA 18 in the box which I will not play as I am not into football games apart from Sensible Soccer on the Amiga or Xbox 360. The problem is I
want to sell the game on eBay, but on the case it says that the game is not to be sold separately. Does this apply to me when I sell it on eBay?

I’m not a company just an individual, I was going to replace some of the money I spent on the Pro by selling the game.
Andrew J.
Currently playing: Horizon Zero Dawn and Super Mario Odyssey.

GC: We can’t give legal advice, but we think that’s just an instruction for the shops not to take them out of bundles and sell them separately. Perhaps any lawyers reading this can advise.

GTA beater

A new Saints Row would be amazing. Been wanting one for last few years. The original was amazing back in Stillwater. No stupid things in it, longer missions and story, and Johnny Gat alive. He rocks it for the game series.

it should be up there with GTA for me. Saints Row 1 and 2 beat GTA V all day long.
Anon

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

Raise your arms

Just as I suspected, ARMS is indeed a supremely vibrant, inventive, and fun game. The motion controls here are revelatory; there’s a sensational sensation of tactility, precision and feedback to the fighting that the more conventional analogue control scheme could only dream of emulating. And there’s some genuine, deceptive, nuance and depth to be found in the scintillating combat system. Nintendo really struck creative gold with this incomparable experience – which happens to evoke classics such as Punch-Out!! and Power Stone for me. As well as happy memories playing as Dhalsim in Street Fighter.

I’m loving the rock, paper, scissors dynamic and interplay of the fighting mechanics, where grabs beat guard, punches beat grabs, air strikes beat ground strikes, curving arms beat sidestep happy pugilists, etc. Speaking of which, the imagination and variety in the ARMS is quite extraordinary. I’ve only scratched the surface of the strategic possibilities available via mixing and matching the titular arms, but there’s definitely a ton of tactical scope for me to explore in the gameplay and I look forward to doing so with gusto.

The character art for the fighters in ARMS is also artistically sublime, and some of the strongest and most distinctive art design to come out of Nintendo in a long time. Twintelle, Master Mummy, Lola, Ribbon Girl, Byte & Barq, and Ninjara are among my favourites to use so far.

The more I play ARMS the more I realise just how genius its fighting mechanics are. It’s a very different breed of fighter from its contemporaries, with a more methodical and singular sense of flow and cadence in reading opponents and trying to second guess their moves. Judging the distances, speed and curves of your strikes and that of your adversary, using the best arms for the job and mastering your surroundings. Not to mention the rush and excitement of scrambling to reap the benefits of certain items and using hazardous components on the fight arenas to your advantage.

Online play has been very smooth so far for me, the netcode has been very stable and reliable in the 20 or so hours I’ve played the game so far. I’m really enjoying the Hoops, Volleyball, and Skillshot mini-games as well, they enrich the game and are a fun novelties to engage with from time to time. Headlock Scramble though is an incredibly exhilarating and chaotic mode that reminds me so much of Rainmaker mode in Splatoon at times, with how empowering it feels to possess the accursed tool of destruction.

ARMS is utterly wonderful and reinvigorates the fighting genre, much like Splatoon did with the online shooter genre in my opinion. Nintendo have established a fantastic foundation to build on in the future, personally, I’ll be up in arms if they don’t follow through with a sophomore rush attack!
Galvanized Gamer

Inbox also-rans

I purchased Star Wars: Battlefront just for the VR mission. I didn’t have a PlayStation VR so had to buy that also. I didn’t actually have a PlayStation 4 so I had to get one of them as well. Ended up being quite an expensive piece of DLC but it was worth it.
MRHBK

It took another reader mentioning it for me to even remember The Last Guardian was even out. Obviously Final Fantasy VII will do well, but what’s the betting Shenmue III also doesn’t sell that well? I mean, it’s not like anyone bought the first ones…
Gonch

This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Gannet, who asks what do you think is the most overrated video game?

You don’t have to think the game is actively bad, just not as good as its reputation suggests. But do try and describe exactly why it didn’t live up to your expectations and what it got wrong. Was it just a good game that was hyped up too much, or do you feel it has flaws that were brushed over in reviews?

Was the problem that you were expecting it to be one thing and it turned out to be something completely different? Or was there some other personal preference that meant you couldn’t enjoy it?

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: How have your tastes in video games changed?

Weekend Hot Topic, part 2: How have your tastes in video games changed?
Call Of Duty: WWII – a young man’s game?

GameCentral readers discuss how their video game preferences have shifted over the years, from the types of games to the consoles themselves.

The subject for this week’s Hot Topic was suggested by reader Grackle, who asked whether you’ve noticed a change in terms of the types of games you play, or major franchises you’ve changed your opinion on?

Many people mentioned they have less time for games as they’ve got older, with a tendency towards playing less games for shorter period. But others insisted their tastes haven’t really changed that much, just evolved with the technology.

Changing tastes

This is an interesting question because my preferences have changed over the years, but I’m not sure whether that’s a lack of time, declining skills, or me just being a different person now. All three I suppose. When I was younger I used to play almost nothing but multiplayer games. Especially Call Of Duty and FIFA, but nowadays I find I’m just not good enough to really compete. Against my mates, maybe but since they don’t play as much now either that doesn’t really cunt.

Instead I’ve found myself playing single-player games more and more. Games I would’ve never imagined myself being interested in before, like role-playing games and a lot of indie titles. I’ve even got into Dark Souls and Bloodborne, which really wouldn’t have been my thing five or 10 years ago.
Especially given how little time I had to play them at any one moment I was so pleased with myself when I beat Bloodborne that I immediately looked into the other games and other ‘hard’ games that I would’ve dismissed before. So actually, I don’t feel as if I’m missing out I’ve just moved onto something completely different that’s just as good.
Dougal

No longer available

When I was younger I was a sucker for Japanese role-players, the longer and more obscure the better. I had a SNES (obviously!) and I must’ve played most of them two or three times each. God knows how long I spent on Suikoden II when I graduated to a PS1.

Nowadays though I have two problems: not enough time and not enough Japanese role-players. As time has gone on I’ve found myself drifting more towards Western role-players, particularly Bethesda’s games, and other shorter games. I was really into Telltale games for a while, until they lost their mojo, and would actually love for there to be more episodic games for other genres.

Hitman is the only example I can think of and I really liked that, but of course it was such a flop it almost ended up tanking the franchise and the developer. I am surprised more games don’t try to target those with less time on their hands. I know that’s probably supposed to be mobile games, but there should be something in the middle between Candy Crush and Final Fantasy XIV. Maybe that’s why the Switch is doing so well…
Trepsils

Time catches up

I would say my gaming habits have definitely changed over the last few years. This is mostly because as I’ve grown out of my teens and into my 20s my disposable income has gone down, as well as my free time. With a full time job, rent, bills and a wedding on the way I really had to focus my efforts onto getting the most bang for my buck. I used to buy games right around release and sink four to six hours at a time.
Now I very rarely, if ever, buy a new game. Only getting them as gifts or on sale, and that is only after I have done extensive research to make sure I’m going to enjoy it. My play time is also now limited to just one to two hours, sometimes at the expense of sleep.

This all makes me feel a little old but also grown up, not to mention playing games for six hours straight just isn’t healthy… Man I really am old.
KeeganatorPrime (PSN ID)

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

Never look back

I don’t think my tastes in games have changed all that much over the years, but the way I play them certainly has. I used to be just a normal console gamer but at the start of this gen I decided to get a gaming PC and have not looked back since. The amount of faff necessary to get the PC made was much less than many would have you believe and I immediately saw the benefit in terms of better graphics and cheaper games.

The only downside has been not having my mates around to play multiplayer, but they were all starting to do that much less than before anyway. If I had my way I’d wish for consoles to just go away as a concept tomorrow, and just concentrate everything on the games and the state-of-the-art hardware?
I’m particularly glad I made the switch because of all the nonsense with the PS4 Pro and Xbox One X. Nearly £500 consoles that make virtually no difference and still aren’t as powerful as a top end PC? Yeah, no thanks. I’ll just stick with what I’ve got and upgrade my graphics card next year.
Captain Broom

Driven off

Thinking back to the kind of games I used to play as a teenager the biggest difference is racing games. I used to play tons of them, and yet the only current gen one I have is Forza Motorsport 7 and I’ve barely touched that if I’m honest.

Thing is, I don’t really know why. It’s a really good game, has plenty of cars and tracks, but somehow it doesn’t have the same appeal. I’ve never heard of driving games being thought of as something that only kids play but then there is the thing that generally there are less of them around at the moment so maybe everyone went off them at the same time?

Perhaps it’s because they take a lot of skill to play and people don’t have the time or effort to keep on the ball with them. Or maybe it’s just that there’s not really anything new to do with them. Either way, I can’t say I really miss them.
Sagat

Everything’s cool

I like to think I’ve become a lot more accepting of different types of games as the years went on. Back in my youth there would be certain types, like strategy games and role-players, that were just not deemed cool and I would avoid them purely for that reason. You had to keep up with the cool kids back in those days and to a youngster that was all that was important.

Japanese role-players being just so plain weird also put me off above and beyond that, but more recently I’ve got into things like Skyrim which are lot less off-putting. The real breakthrough though came with XCOM, which is certainly not the sort of game I would’ve used to play but after the rave reviews from GC I picked it up and absolutely loved it – and all its spin-offs and sequels.

After that I gave NieR: Automata a go, and although it’s obviously very different to the sorts of games I used to play (or rather avoid playing) on the PS1 and PlayStation 2 I’ve really enjoyed. I probably would’ve given Persona 5 a go too after that, but the long run time put me off there. My horizons might be wider by my amount of free time gets shorter every day!
Colm

Lost halo

I guess the reasons are obvious enough but I used to be a huge Halo fan, but well… you know how that went. I suppose it’s unreasonable to think something can go on being great forever (the Star Wars movies are proof enough of that) but I find it depressing thinking of what Halo is now compared to at is peak.

The stories make no sense (or at least I don’t care about them anymore), and the multiplayer is one step away from being just generic Call Of Duty fodder. Nothing I used to love about the cat and mouse nature of the old games is there any more and I just cannot get excited about it anymore. No wonder they’ve been waiting so long for Halo 6.
Jamgo

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

Game time sacrifice

Realistically speaking, apart from the advancement of games and the styles that they are presented to us, I feel they are still the same type of genre. For example, I played platformers, role-players, and shoot ‘em-ups, etc. back in the day, and still do now. The major difference though is time, and hoping that saving the game will be open to frequent amounts of it.

My habits have changed as playing at available times is much less in the week then before! Doing house chores, and a bunch of other stuff, when getting back from work has made me cut back on some of my hobbies. The weekend is where I can make up for it, but completing games of which none are short can take a while to do.

Consoles have always been the main choice for me, as PCs are just too fiddly and annoying for gaming machines, whilst consoles are just – put that wire in there and plug that here and power on, make your way through set up and creating your identity and install game then you’re ready to go, more or less.

Now and again I have taken the odd break from gaming but get back to it with a vengeance.

I do have other interests which take over like films, books, music, and walking, etc. Of which game time sacrifice must happen. But I must admit that lifestyles do change and it will be interesting to see what ten years from now will be like! But for now looking forward to the next big release is still of intrigue and makes for interesting times indeed.
Alucard

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

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: How have your tastes in video games changed?

Weekend Hot Topic, part 1: How have your tastes in video games changed?
Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War – do you have time for it?

GameCentral readers discuss how their video game preferences have shifted over the years, from the types of games to the consoles themselves.

The subject for this week’s Hot Topic was suggested by reader Grackle, who asked whether you’ve noticed a change in terms of the types of games you play, or major franchises you’ve changed your opinion on?

Many people mentioned they have less time for games as they’ve got older, with a tendency towards playing less games for shorter period. But others insisted their tastes haven’t really changed that much, just evolved with the technology.

Short, controlled bursts

My tastes in games has changed without me even realising. I am now the proud father to a four-month-old boy, so time and exhaustion play a massive role in what I want to play. Previously I would be chomping at the bit for the latest massive open world action role-playing game that I could sink hours into, so a week into my paternity I decided to treat myself to Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War. Bleary eyed I stuck the disc in and started. Cut scenes began, but I could hear the rumblings of a baby crying. Pausing a cut scene appears to be a luxury in games these days, so the choices were to skip it and have no idea what is going on, or restart the game.

I opted to skip and pause at the first opportunity, so I started on the back foot with no investment in a Tolkien world I usually adore. A few more hours in and I just couldn’t care less about playing. There is too much to do and I just don’t have the patience any more to pretend collecting runes gives me any joy. I fought my own feelings and soldiered on for a few more hours, but lost interest.

It appears now that short bursts of games are not only what I physically have time to play, but look forward too, with the Switch now being my far and away favourite platform – being so commute friendly and all. Dragon Quest Builders is a story-light, chunked up game that I am playing to and from the office and I am loving it, despite having played it on the PlayStation 4 when it first came out and trading it in.
Joe Throup

Happy days

My attitude to games has changed a lot over the last few years.

I used to be a massive GTA fan, spending hours just mucking about, going on rampages, etc. but I just don’t enjoy them anymore. I don’t like the cynical edge and the fact that most of the characters don’t seem to care about anyone around them.

I also prefer games now with a happier vibe, so while I played The Last Of Us I won’t be playing Part II!

I think this change in taste is due to personal circumstances I’ve had to endure the last few years, as all I want from gaming now is a happy escape from it all for a while.
LastYearsModel09 (PSN ID)

Preferred era

My taste in games doesn’t change often, really. When I was in my twenties I was for some reason obsessed with flight simulators (and SimCity 2000). Throughout my thirties and forties however I’ve mainly favoured third person stealth games, tactical squad shooters, and arcade racers.

I think a gamer’s taste in games is also strongly influenced by what dominates the market at the time. Back in the ZX Spectrum days, for instance, text adventures were very popular, but I can’t imagine that type of game would satisfy me now because of advances in game design and technology.

Saying that, I play sixth generation games more than I play new ones. So I have an enduring taste for the PlayStation 2/original Xbox era. Maybe this choice is comparable to record collectors who have a fondness for certain time periods when it comes to music.
msv858 (Twitter)

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

Unbroken bond

I used to hate first person shooters, they made me feel claustrophobic and restricted, so I never played them. I’d play third person games (Prince Of Persia, GTA, Assassin’s Creed, Uncharted) as I felt more able to explore and take in my environment. Now I love the first person aspect, as it allows me to be fully immersed in the world around me.

Maybe it’s due to the addition of larger and larger TVs into our homes, but I find them easier to play than I did several years ago. Also, back in the PlayStation 3 days I played a lot more online FIFA and Call of Duty but on the current gen I just can’t be bothered to stick on my headphones and shout at the TV (having two kids now makes this less appealing, don’t want to wake them!). Which brings me onto free time.

Clearly having kids means less free time, but I do still play games several times each week. Also, now I’ve got my six-year-old daughter into my old PlayStation 3 games I’ve been playing Lego and Burnout Paradise with her. It’s brilliant seeing how much she enjoys this and it’s a bond I never imagined I would build when I started out playing games all those years ago!
Billy Robson

Evolutionary path

My buying habits have definitely changed over the years, in that I probably buy a more varied selection of games now than when I was younger. This is mainly down to more disposable income and so more willing to take a risk on something I may not like. The genres I enjoyed most as a kid though, I still enjoy to this day.

My first ever computer 30 plus years ago was a Sharp MZ700 and I remember my favourite game, Dragon Caves. A Dungeon Master style romp and I’ve enjoyed this genre throughout the generations from Eye Of The Beholder on the Amiga through to Legend Of Grimrock on my laptop. And loved Shining The Holy Ark on the Sega Saturn.

Also, remember all-day sessions of Kick Off and Sensible Soccer with my mates. This has evolved into games of FIFA with my son. Always local multiplayer though, never got into online.

I would say though that family and work commitments have meant that I appreciate the pick up and play simple stuff a lot more these days. I have a soft spot for cheap hidden object adventure games such as the Enigmatis and Eventide series. They’ll never win a game of the year poll but I enjoy them nonetheless. This may also be why I prefer Horizon Zero Dawn to Zelda: Breath Of The Wild. Not that it’s in the same category of simple as the ones I’ve just mentioned, but I definitely found it more accessible from the start.

Good Hot Topic, and it’s made me realise I need to get back into a more complex role-playing style game. I’ve got Divinity: Original Sin and Shadow Tactics in my backlog, so one of these next I think.
Adam

Easy playing

As I have gotten older, my gaming tastes have definitely changed. These days, even though I think I probably still have more free time than most other people due to not having kids or a partner, I have still found myself gravitating towards shorter games that can be completed in a few hours.

Therefore, I tend to play more indie games and a lot more platformers and Metroidvania style games that can be dipped in and out of in short sessions and still feel like I made some progress. I still do enjoy playing the longer games but pick and choose which I play, and they normally take me a lot longer to get through.

Sometimes, after a long day at work, I want to play something but not something too taxing, which is why games like the stuff from Telltale have been great as they kind of like just watching a TV show.
Truk_Kurt (PSN ID)/trukkurt (Steam ID)/Angry_Kurt (Twitter)
Now playing: Wolfenstein II (PS4) and Super Mario Odyssey (Switch)

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

Online decline

From December 2005 the games I played most leaned towards online games with the release of the Xbox 360, this made online console gaming possible for me. I had always been interested and dabbled with online with the Dreamcast, but when I played online on Quake III it was lagging badly and I would shoot a rocket and it would take over three seconds before anything happened (this could have been my Internet connection at the time to blame).

Xbox Live on the Xbox 360 allowed you for the first time on the platform to get online without needing a credit card (which I didn’t have so couldn’t get online on Xbox before this), using prepaid codes I jumped in and would play online regularly.

Now on the Xbox One most of my time is now spent on single-player and only occasionally online, I feel I’ve come full circle from single-player to online and back again.

I don’t think my taste in games has changed as I still play and enjoy a wide variety of games just as I always have. Although online gaming is declining for me, due to regular team mates disappearing off the scene.

The format I use most has changed over the years, the first console I bought was a SNES and Nintendo was always my go-to gaming machine up until the Wii. I didn’t care for the direction they took after the GameCube, so moved to Xbox as my main platform and it’s been the that way ever since. I’ve always enjoyed PlayStation as a second option and continue to do so. Nintendo has now become interesting to me again with the Switch, but I’ve yet to join the bandwagon.
R1CH5TER

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

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.