What should I play next?

Following on from looking at the top 5 games to watch out for in 2010, I’ve been giving some thought as to what I should be playing next.  PixelJunk Shooter has been completed, as has Burnout Paradise.  I’m doing one last play-through of inFamous, and that should cover it.  I’m after something that I can get my teeth stuck into.

As far as online multiplayer goes, the extra DLC for Uncharted 2 has me covered, as does the ever-addictive Modern Warfare 2.  That also means that I don’t really want to be playing yet another FPS, so that means MAG is out the window for now.

Heavy Rain has been recently released, but for what it is, I’m rather hesitant to be dropping £40 right now on such a release.  Instead, I’ve turned my attention to games that have been out for a while and have dropped in price quite a bit.  I’m currently thinking along the lines of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed,  DiRT 2, Resident Evil 5, The Saboteur, and Call of Juarez.

What I want to know is, am I missing something?  Also, do you have any idea what you might be playing next?

Uncharted 2 Is Epic

When I found out that one of my favourite games of all time, Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune, was getting a sequel I already knew it was going to be great.  I mean, it had to be, right?  With Naughty Dog constantly striving to push the bar ever-higher and with the PS3 as a platform, great things were going to be accomplished.  The end product is a masterpiece.  Every PS3 gamer should grab a copy- heck anyone who’s remotely interested in gaming should pay some serious attention.  Uncharted 2 has set a new standard in video games for character interaction, visuals, and gameplay.

Some people will have you believe that Uncharted 2 is the video game of the century, but in my eyes it is simply the game of the moment.  And rightly so.  The original Uncharted’s perks and flaws weigh quite heavily in my opinion of its sequel, leading me to reach a different conclusion to the majority of the gaming press.  The original for me, remains a classic and perhaps purer experience.  In some respects it felt like next-generation gaming due to intelligent level design.  Exploring the Fortress immediately springs to mind: remaining local to one area, gradually scaling different levels and reaching new areas.  In contrast Uncharted 2 flits back and forth between a myriad of locations a la Indiana Jones.  This is no bad thing in itself, it’s just that as in my opinion there was nothing particularly bad about the original game, it means I’ve not fallen in love with the sequel like most people have.

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Hands-on with the Uncharted 2 multiplayer beta

If you’re reading this and you’ve not yet played the beta, then yes, either by robbing a bank or bribing Naughty Dog you somehow need to get into the Uncharted 2 multiplayer beta right now.  It’s that good.  For those who have pre-order Uncharted 2 or managed to snag a beta key, access is granted from September 15th.  I’m led to believe that general availability of the beta is September 29th.

My initial thoughts:  graphics are dripping with quality, gameplay is solid and spot-on, and overall it’s serious fun!

I dn’t know where to start with this initial hands-on look.  I suppose I’d like to mention first that I was very, very sceptical of the prospect of multiplayer within the Uncharted franchise.  After all, the original Uncharted remains my favourite game so far, and going through the single player adventure was enjoyable, but it was my experience, and so Uncharted felt like my personal, special game and I didn’t really want to share it with anyone.

Now that my disclosure is out of the way, I’d like to tell you right now that everything I thought before was wrong.  Naughty Dog have treated the Uncharted franchise with continuity, fluidity, and respect.  So much so that the multiplayer experience behaves and feels like the authentic Uncharted experience you remembered from the first game: perfect.  Added game mechanics, such as grabbing riot shields for cover, and lugging around heavy relics, feel like natural extensions to existing abilities.

Continue reading Hands-on with the Uncharted 2 multiplayer beta

Filtered: Gamescom 09

I’ve been catching up on all of the announcements focusing on the PlayStation brand at Gamescom 09.  I’d like to share with you a list news items that have caught my eye and what I think about them:

  • PS3 Slim– About time!  The reduced price has been needed for months, the brand cleanup is a wise move, and Sony have finally found a voice with their marketing campaign!
  • LocoRoco Midnight Carnival– I’m a die-hard LocoRoco fan, and this upcoming PSN download looks really… well, fun!  New gameplay mechanics should keep things fresh.
  • PlayStation Home update– universal game launching from within Home looks quite compelling, but there are still numerous problems with accessing Home for some people: downloading areas, connection issues etc, that might prevent them from utilising this functionality.
  • Digital Comics Store for PSP– I’ve got to hand it to Sony- this looks pretty damn sweet!  Why has it taken this long though?!  Unfortunately though, it’s only for the US at the moment.  Boo.  Hiss.
  • New Uncharted 2 footage goes without saying *drools*
  • Firmware 3.0– Hopefully this should expose ‘what’s new’ on the PlayStation Store, and across the PlayStation Network, helping people feel more connected to the PlayStation community and kept up-to-date with what’s going on.  The rest of the firmware update is incidental in my opinion.
  • LittleBigPlanet Water!– This should be a very interesting new game mechanic, and may persuade me to visit LittleBigPlanet once again.

And that’s it!  If there’s anything I’ve missed, I’ve either forgotten about it, or I’m not really bothered about it.

Uncharted 2 could not happen on Xbox 360

Ars Technica has a detailed and informative interview with Christophe Balestra, co-president of Naughty Dog about why Uncharted 2 couldn’t be made on the 360; involving the technology utilised behind the scences, but crucially Naughty Dog’s role and responsibility of being a first party developer and how their experience feeds into the wider developer community.

E3 Interview – PlayStation.Blog.Europe Tracks Down Uncharted 2: Among Thieves

E3 Interview – PlayStation.Blog.Europe Tracks Down Uncharted 2: Among Thieves– I’m still amazed by the footage shown at E3, but as ever, I want more, as I’m a huge Uncharted fan. The interview is very insightful, and has a link to a trailer: all of which you see is either actual gameplay, or cutscenes rendered using the same in-game engine.  Oh yes.

Access to Uncharted 2 Multiplayer beta with inFamous

Access to Uncharted 2 Multiplayer beta with inFamous– Well, this confirms the Uncharted 2 multiplayer rumours.  Still, I’d have much rather had a single player demo of Uncharted 2.  I guess this is better than nothing.  See also: all of Kotaku’s Uncharted 2 coverage.