This week brings us the “whoopsie” that is SimCity, next-gen Xbox’s (potential) lineup, a God of War: Ascension Review, and in the vein of last week’s ‘Mario’ feature, there’s another one concerning Link and Zelda.
I myself haven’t bought/cared about/played a SimCity game in years, but there’s a guy in my post-grad program who did buy the new iteration from EA. Origin account in hand, he loaded up the game, and was immediately slapped in the face with the same problems as in the article. I think the worst part isn’t necessarily that the game is broken (online launches are tricksy things, and I can appreciate the development side of it, so I forgive), but that EA’s response as the publisher is to make excuses, release a broken and unprepared game before it’s ready (and lose money because of this), and then to tongue-in-cheekily blame players for the chaos. Definitely not something a studio/publisher should do.
I’m a passive Xbox player: I slug the thing from the basement during the holidays, or when I have a weekend to myself. I haven’t really touched the thing since 2012; but seeing the “makes sense” list of potential next-gen Xbox titles has me excited. A new Thief game, Beyond Good and Evil 2, a new Oddworld title, Fortnite, Watchdogs, and AC4: Black Flag all have me chomping at the bit for next-gen to hurry up and become current-gen. I’m not much of an ‘annual release’ kinda guy, but I still have hope (unlike every other gamer in the world) that CoD could become something more that a same-y shooter in the next-gen years.
When my father asked me to find him a game with amazing graphics, simple yet fun combat, and less mentally intensive gameplay, I pointed him to God of War, and we picked up the franchise pack. We’ve played the first two on and off for awhile, and Ascension had my attention as something to reward the old man for beating the previous games. The review hits all the right notes for my father (I just want to play, I don’t want to have to problem solve), but for someone like me it just makes me realize that perpetually extended franchises taste sour.
With 62% less fluff questions than the Mario article, it really gets you thinking about continuity in games. With the way gamers are picking up on these kinds of things, it’s almost safer to just start a new franchise!