Posts tagged video games
It’s PlayStation 4 review day! I’ve done a little bit of the dirty work, reading reviews of the PS4. I read three to completion and pieces of two more. Here are the two I’d recommend reading right now:
- Polygon. Justin McElroy’s review is not only beautiful, but the most informed review I’ve read. There’s a also a very concise video that rounds out the whole thing. You should definitely read this review.
While Sony in 2006 was focused on driving adoption of the Blu-ray standard, envisioning another home media boom that never quite materialized, Sony in 2013 has no such distractions. The PS4 isn’t built to sell 3D TVs, or Blu-ray discs or any other corporate mandate. It’s a gaming console, a clear message that Sony has been quick to repeat.
- Kotaku. Stephen Totilo’s review is very good. It’s the kind of thing he really likes diving into.
The PS4 is just starting, and as it is, it is hard to experience the PS4 without thinking about the machine that came before it. The PlayStation 3 made an incredible journey, from rotundResistance and Lair-playing machine to the console of The Last of Us, Puppeteer and The Unfinished Swan. The console got skinnier. It got better. And it wound up playing some of my favorite games ever.
Both Kotaku and Polygon will be updating their reviews as time goes on. As the libraries change, as software is updated you’ll see the scores increase… well hopefully they’ll increase and not decrease. It’s a very interesting method to reviews, but one that I support 100%.
Bleep Bloop - Your Best Game
I’m a few weeks late posting this, partially because I’ve been busy, partially because it was hard for me to find the right words. The video above is the final episode of Bleep Bloop.
This series means a lot to me, both as a nerd and professionally. Yes I worked on about 80 episodes of the show so I’m close to it. But even from the very start I thought of Bleep Bloop as important. Yes, the directive from Jeff was always “funny first” (after all the show aired on a comedy site), but I always felt like we were doing the community a kind of service. Even though were poking fun and prodding the industry and calling out bad games, we were also informing and speaking to a certain part of video game culture, and hopefully we expanded their horizons with our comedy video. You can see it in 8-bit Rock Band, Artsy Fartsy Games, Night Vision Goggles, Dante’s Infreno, Wii vs Kinect vs Move, iPad Games, and Uwe Boll.
As someone who follows tech and games journalism pretty closely there was really nothing else like it when I started working on the show at Episode 12 in January 2009.
Professionally, Bleep Bloop is what propelled me into a full time job at CollegeHumor. I early in my days freelancing for CollegeHumor I was brought in to shoot and edit this show. Shortly thereafter they hired me full time and I can thank CollegeHumor for seeing a producer in me and allowing me the opportunity to produce some of their highest profile content. Presently I’m a commercial / music video producer, but you can draw a straight line from freelance shooting and editing a few episodes of Bleep Bloop to where I am right now.
So please watch the final episode of a series I have a lot of love for. Oh, and you can spot me in the last one at 10:40 choosing my favorite game of all time Zombies Ate My Neighbors.
Read the article. Watch the video. The team at Polygon hit this one out of the park. I’m completely blown away.
On Nov. 15, 2009 Michael Scott’s family reported him missing. The next day, a Monday, Chicago Police found him floating in the river not far from the city center. He died of a gunshot wound to the head delivered at extremely close range. Police forensics, in cooperation with the Cook County medical examiner, later ruled that his death was a suicide.
The incident initially drew local, and later national, media attention. Scott wasn’t just anyone. He was the President of the Chicago Board of Education, the third-largest public school district in the nation.
He was also under investigation for suspicious real estate deals related to the city’s unsuccessful 2016 Summer Olympics bid. His lifeless body laid to rest many inconvenient questions that had begun to circulate at City Hall, while simultaneously raising others.
I will play virtually any iOS game I hear about, which means lately I’ve been playing Candy Crush. It’s a decent enough match-3 puzzler with lots of polish, but the monetization scheme makes no sense and prevents me from fully recommending the game.
Candy Crush is free to download/play, but you only have a set number of lives. Once you run out you have to pay for more lives or wait. You can also buy additional power-ups, the pricing of which is insane and hidden until you are about to confirm the purchase (see above).
I once read an article (which I can unfortunately no longer find) that compared the situation to Disney Land. Disney Land used to be more like a state fair, where instead of purchasing admission you bought a finite number of ride tickets. Then a competing theme park (maybe Knott’s Berry Farm?) opened up and offered unlimited rides. Even though unlimited rides cost more than buying a bunch of tickets, people preferred it because they didn’t have to spend their day at the park worrying, “Is this ride worth a ticket? Should I save them for that ride?”
I recently learned the same lesson from another iOS match-3 game, Triple Town. Like Candy Crush, when you run out of turns in Triple Town you have to either spend money or wait. I don’t remember the exact numbers, but you could buy a set amount of additional turns for $1 or unlimited turns for $5. I knew there was a good chance a few $1 packs would more than cover my appetite for the game, but I bought the unlimited just so I could relax and enjoy the stupid thing. Candy Crush, far as I can tell, does not offer the equivalent option.
I’ve got no problem spending money on iOS games, but I want to actually get the game in return. Giving me something finite I have to worry about using stresses me out, which is the opposite of why I’m playing games in the first place.
I agree with all of this.
PS4. 399. This holiday season.
I’m absolutely shocked that this is less than the Xbox. Wow. Good for Sony. They brought EXACTLY what gamers wanted. This plays into exactly what I said about their conference in February, they’re putting the gamer at the center.
I think Sony won the day. They were a little slow to start, and there was a lot of “we don’t have enough time to talk about this” in some places but, overall, we saw some good looking games and they appealed to gamers. And really, that’s what E3 is all about.