The Tuesday Inbox insists that next gen consoles are still better value than a gaming PC, as one reader finally beats Red Dead Redemption 2.
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The report about Nintendo’s plans for the next 12 months sounds like suspiciously good news, doesn’t it? The Switch Pro before Christmas and a bunch of AAA games? I’d say it’s simply not true because it’s not the sort of thing that Nintendo usually does, release so many games at once, but I guess all bets are off given the pandemic. Plus, they were being pretty quiet even before it started, so there has been time to build up a backlog of top end games.
I guess the best guess/hope is Zelda: Breath Of The Wild 2 and Bayonetta 3 this year? Metroid Prime 4 seems too far away but maybe a new Mario Kart or even, dare I say it, a new IP? But I really don’t know what to even guess at other than the three big games we know are being made. In an ideal world that means multiple new IPs and spins on existing games but why have I got this nagging feeling it’s going to be Mario Kart 9 and a bunch more ports and remakes?
Then again, everyone does seem certain that the Switch Pro is going to be out this autumn. As someone that’s been very impressed by Nintendo’s output on the Switch, until the pandemic hit, I am more than happy to invest in a Pro version if there are also games that are exclusive to it/work better. We’ll have to see but at the moment the future is looking unexpectedly rosy.
Why don’t Namco make use of their back catalogue like they used to? We get all sorts of their early arcade games in compilations every generation back to the PS1, but where are the re-releases of their classic 3D PlayStation games?
If they released a remastered version of Ridge Racer I’d bite their arm off. Or a compilation of their fighting games would go down nicely too.
GC: Where is Ridge Racer in general, we’d say. There were rumours of a new Switch game a while back, but it didn’t amount to anything.
Everything but the gameplay
Late to the party, but I just completed Read Dead Redemption 2 and wow. I am blown away.
I have to admit, the gameplay got tedious, and I got bored with most missions ending in a gunfight, but the world building, the immersion and the attention to detail was truly incredible. It truly does blow away every other open world game in my opinion.
On top of that, the characters and story. I think Arthur Morgan is the best protagonist I have ever played as.
And the voiceover talent Rockstar finds is unreal. When seemingly every other company are relying on Nolan North and Troy Baker, Rockstar seems to find people that were obscure before and they are the best I’ve heard. This game being no exception. Arthur is Arthur because of the incredible voiceover work done by the actor.
It makes me sad they seem to be focusing more and more on online, as the times I have tried it’s always been a toxic mess. I hope they do make a new game soon.
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It was an interesting Reader’s Feature at the weekend, on building a gaming PC. It’s something I’ve considered many times in the past but it always seems so inaccessible/ I dread even having to buy a new laptop off the shelf because I can’t see any way, as a layman, to compare components from different manufacturers.
Is that processor from AMD equivalent to that one from Intel? Is this Doohickey-616 from Weyland basically a rebadged version of that MacGuffin-1610 from Yutani?
Even searching for answers online only ever seems to give me tech blogs written for people who already know what they’re on about.
But, still, I’ll definitely build a PC next time I’m looking for an upgrade. Definitely. I mean it this time.
FoximusPrime81 (gamertag/NN ID/Twitter)
Regarding Anon’s Reader’s Feature, you’d never be able to build a rig for £700 that would see similar performance to that of an Xbox Series X or PlayStation 5. No PC at that price can do 4K at 60fps and at 120Hz, which the consoles are supposed to do, though not currently confirmed with ray-tracing.
The Nvidia RTX 3080 can do close to that on most games with ray-tracing as long as DLSS (deep learning super sampling) is enabled. This card alone costs £700-£800. The AMD equivalent in price and performance is the Radeon RX 6800 XT, so I’m afraid it’s just not possible.
You look at the PCs on Scan that are capable of playing games at 4K and 60fps and at 120Hz and you’re looking at well over £2,000. You just can’t beat the price per performance of the current gen consoles.
Any idea if there’ll ever be another Nintendo Labo GC?
I’m guessing not, as we don’t tend to hear much about them and no one ever mentions them now. But I’ve been building the car, sub, and plane one at the weekend, that I’ve had put aside for a while untouched, and, well, they are incredible aren’t they? They are so inventive it’s a shame not to continue. Even the sheer joy of putting them together, never mind the games, is brilliant.
GC: It’s Nintendo, so it’s impossible to guess. But certainly Labo wasn’t the breakout hit they were hoping for.
Damsels causing distress
Sorry I’m a bit late but I was interested in the iconic female leads Reader’s Feature. Being male and growing up in the 80s and 90s I didn’t even realise there were not many females in games but here a few that come to mind.
Blaze Feilding (Streets Of Rage) Yes, she has been seen as sex symbol, depending on who you ask, but in the original Streets Of Rage she could kick arse and was a great female character.
Alisia Dragoon – Once again, a great female lead that didn’t need saving, in fact she was saving the world with bolts of lightning and had her own Mega Drive game named after her.
Tyrus Flare (Golden Axe) Yes, she was oddly dressed but so were the others. Once again, she was hard as nails, didn’t need saving, and was a strong female lead.
GC: We are shocked that no one has mentioned Chun-Li yet.
Was sad to read about the death of Gordon Hall, one of the founders of Rockstar Leeds, recently.
I loved playing the brilliant Game Boy Advance version of Max Payne (when Rockstar Leeds was Mobius Entertainment) and later the excellent trilogy of handheld Grand Theft Auto games. Liberty City Stories and Chinatown Wars are two of my favourite Grand Theft Auto games and I must have spent hundreds of hours happily rampaging through Liberty City of my PSP and DS!
Thank you for the happy memories.
Diamond in the rough
I wrote in a few weeks ago to say I’d purchased Metro Exodus from the PS Store for not much money, thought I’d share my initial thoughts. I’m not very far in, busy deep exploring the first large area, The Volga (with the Terminal).
I think I’ve been spoilt with tutorials in the past, as this game does seem to let you just get on with it much more than what I’ve been used to. The controls have been very fiddly to get to grips with, but I think I’m there now.
There is a lot in the game that you just seem to work out for yourself, which was initially frustrating but is now quite satisfying. I’m not saying it’s Demon Souls or anything but definitely different to what I’ve played in the past.
It’s an interesting world to explore, full of lots of little hidden areas. It’s a little rough around the edges, not what I’d call a slick game, but that seems to just be a sign of the development budget. But you can’t deny they didn’t have ambition.
By far my biggest gripe is the load time though. Playing the digital download on a base PlayStation 4. From pressing the icon on the dashboard to being in game takes a full five minutes. I know, I timed it.
The Microsoft/Bethesda deal should be an absolute game changer but Bethesda have done so much damage to their own reputation in recent years that people are unsure what kind of impact it will actually have, and that to me is more remarkable than the takeover itself.
Was surprised to read that Outriders is on Game Pass from launch. What happens to people who pre-ordered the game? Do you know how this suddenly came about two weeks from launch? Were pre-orders poor or did people not like the demo? I was not blown away, very generic mix of Gears and Bulletstorm kind of vibe.
GC: We suspect you’re right and pre-orders/general interest was low enough that Microsoft was able to make a deal for less than it would normally cost. There’s information here on how to cancel your pre-order.
This week’s Hot Topic
The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was inspired by reader Newton, and asks what’s your favourite beginning to a video game?
What game do you think makes the best first impression, regardless of what follows? Assuming the beginning means anything with the first hour (although it can be a much smaller section within that time) what game do you feel starts off the best?
What is it about its opening that works so well? Is it the presentation, the story hooks, or simply the gameplay? How important is a good beginning and which good games do you feel start poorly?
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The small print
New Inbox updates appear every weekday morning, with special Hot Topic Inboxes at the weekend. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length and content.
You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word Reader’s Feature at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.
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