I should start by stating that when I say camera I don’t mean the one that Prompto uses. That one is amazing. What I mean is the one that you are constantly at odds with as you teleport all over the place, perform crazy moves and swaps to your allies while they do their abilities. That one is rubbish.
One of the hardest things for any game to do is retain its player base. This is a less pressing concern for games that require an upfront purchase as they are still receiving some income. However, free-to-play games all require their players to spend money in game to fund them. With AAA releases often only having around 10% of the players completing their story modes, is there much hope for any free-to-play MMO? Clearly, there is, since plenty of them have gone on to be a smash hit.
I remember in my teenage years’ rhythm games like Guitar Hero and Rock Band were massive. We’d meet up all the time and bust out the guitars, grab cool plastic drums and then pick some poor fool to do the singing parts. I spent probably far too much time mastering the various songs in Guitar Hero 3 on expert. I even saw my time to shine at University by impressing the ladies – pretty sure that’s how drunk me remembers it. They then just seemed to gradually disappear.
I’ve always enjoyed the Uncharted games. They have that right blend of adventure, story, action and platforming. They’ve never been some of my favourite games, but I finally got around to playing Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End and it totally blew me away. Plenty of games have tried to combine regular game mechanics and cinema, but Uncharted 4 is by far the best.
Ever since it’s initial release I have tried to enjoy Hearthstone. With each major expansion, I glance over what is included: all the additions, tweaks and new mechanics. However, it has never grabbed me as an enjoyable card game. When I win I feel I was just lucky with the cards I drew and when I lose I feel unlucky with the cards I drew. Duelyst, on the other hand, is a glorious digital card game where my every decision feels vital. Something Hearthstone can only aspire to replicate.
I love a good book or movie trilogy. Seeing the same characters go through different adventures and watching their character arcs unfold. It isn’t something you see in video games very often, though. Certainly, there are long games that have a series of side stories and game series that often have similar themes or are set in the same world, but it is rare to see the same characters hold real continuity across games. Why are games sequels with continuity so hard? Let’s have a think, shall we?
With the impending release of Final Fantasy XV, I think it worth looking at what exactly JRPGs can offer now. I mean, they have long since passed their PlayStation 2 heydey, but does that mean they have nothing left to offer? Recent releases – even Final Fantasy games – have felt lacking that extra jazz of previous generations. Is it that the stories aren’t as engaging? Has the combat been forced to evolve to a point where it’s no longer as enjoyable?
So far I have thoroughly enjoyed Destiny’s latest expansion, Rise of Iron. However, it leaves me wanting more. The story is very short and introduces lots of things that aren’t fully developed, but I think Bungie knew this. While Rise of Iron is good, it’s no Taken King and I think Bungie know this as well. They are totally laying the groundwork for Destiny 2.
Video Games For Good is a book containing the collaboration of multiple artists celebrating how amazing games are. It focuses on the positive outcomes that video games have provided to them. Be that on how it has strengthened their family bonds, relieved stress, escapism or crafted new friendships. It’s a great little book filled with joy.
There are so many video game worlds, characters and events that I would like to revisit or explore further. I understand that pursuing these in as a video game might not work for a whole host of reasons, but maybe a novel or two would be the next best thing. Here is a list of five video games that would make great books.