The Friday Inbox is doubtful as to whether the Uncharted movie will be a hit, as one reader takes a chance on Dungeon Encounters.
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With the news that the next gen versions of Cyberpunk 2077 have been delayed, and with the game’s first anniversary coming up, I have to ask the obvious question: is it even worth playing or caring about at this point? I didn’t buy it last year for the obvious reasons and because I planned to get the dedicated PlayStation 5 version instead. Which now isn’t going to happen this year.
Then I went back to read the original reviews and it seems obvious that while it’s good the game is nowhere near the quality of The Witcher 3 (just as that game’s own classic status is being brought into question). I just don’t know whether it’s even worth caring about anymore and would be interested to know what other readers think, especially those that have played the PC version, which I assume the PlayStation 5 version will be similar to.
As far as I can tell even when the game is working without bugs it’s still kind of underwhelming in terms of the story and combat, with a game world that’s maybe not as fun to explore as it first seemed. I don’t know myself, because I haven’t played it, but I’m beginning to wonder whether I even really want to.
Very interesting to see those videos about the cancelled horror version of Tomb Raider. I always find that sort of thing interesting, and with movies too. I still think the central problem with the ‘survival trilogy’ is that there was too little tomb raiding and platforming, especially in the first game, but I think I would’ve generally preferred the monster idea.
Lara must’ve killed more people than Duke Nukem by the end of just the first game and the way it was portrayed just made no sense. She basically didn’t react to any of it after the first kill, which is a shame as up to then the story and character work is pretty good.
By the time of Shadow Of The Tomb Raider the mix of gameplay was a lot better but the story was so dumb in that one that I just couldn’t get into it. I’m not sure what to really suggest for the new game, except that it should have less murder and more climbing – difficult climbing and platforming, not just following a trail of white marks on the wall. Who knows whether that will happen though.
Not charting a trip to the cinema
That Uncharted movie trailer looks… okay-ish? I don’t know what anyone expected but it looks like someone’s kid cosplaying as Nathan Drake while his dad refuses to put on a fake moustache as he pretend to be Sully. Bad casting aside the action scenes just look like more weightless CGI rubbish. I don’t even get what’s meant to be happening at one point, he feel asleep while hanging out of an airplane?
He was knocked out I guess but it all looked so fake and silly, with the most obvious green screen (or whatever they use nowadays) that I have ever seen. But it was still okay. Tom Holland is a charismatic actor, but for anyone that doesn’t know the games I don’t know what they’re really supposed to get out of the film or trailer? That it’s a bit like National Treasure? That Spider-Man secretly wants to be James Bond?
I’d watch it on TV, I guess, but there’s no way I’m going to see that at the cinema.
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Best bat, man
Batman: Arkham City (2011) turns 10 this week. I’m a huge fan of Batman. As such I love this game for the treatment of the Batman mythos, the location of a dilapidated Gotham City turned into Arkham City and the gameplay. Freeflow combat was already great in Batman: Arkham Asylum and it’s improved upon here.
Speaking of improvements, different costumes and different playable characters – Batman and Nightwing are the standouts. I still think it was wrong of Rocksteady advertising a playable Catwoman but we were to find out just before release she was DLC. I will say there were too many Riddler trophies, 440 compared to Batman: Arkham Asylum with 240. I collected them in both games, one of my proudest gaming achievements.
I still rate Batman: Arkham Asylum as the best Arkham game for the smaller story, the atmosphere in the creepy Arkham Asylum, Joker belittling you over the public address sound system, Arleen Sorkin’s last performance as Harley Quinn, and those fantastic Scarecrow sections.
What do you, GameCentral and the readers think?
Boy, you were not joking about that Sony patent story being wild. I don’t even know where to begin… just, what? Even with the most charitable reading of the story I don’t see how any sane person could’ve possibly thought it was a good idea. Assuming it was meant to stop cheats (I assume that’s what it was for, but I’m really not sure) how does paying to kick people out come into it?!
The whole thing is so unbelievable stupid I wouldn’t believe it was even true if the patent wasn’t sitting there on the official website for all to see. I assume it’ll never see the light of day as an actual option but it makes you wonder what other dumb ideas companies have had that we never usually get to hear about.
Out of sequence
I may as well give my two cents worth on Metroid Dread. I don’t understand why anyone would play a Metroid game for a story driven narrative. The best games, like Super Mario Galaxy and Breath Of The Wild don’t have much in terms of story but they are still great games. MercurySteam added some cut scenes at the beginning but I can barely remember them now.
As for the reader who suggested it’s a linear experience, aren’t all Metroidvania games linear? You have the illusion of an open world but where you go and what you do are restricted until you get a power-up, not sure of non-Metroid games as I haven’t played many. You are free to explore but only a certain amount.
The E.M.M.I. are relentless, which is a good thing in my opinion, it gives the sense of, dare I say it, dread. What in my opinion the game needed was some signposting, I know this sounds controversial but in the sections with the E.M.M.I, you lose your bearings as you are being perused and you end up somewhere you weren’t supposed to be. There was a lot going round in circles in my opinion, if you knew where the next objective was that could have been useful and more experienced players can have this disabled.
The other issue I had was the control felt loose at times, where bouncing off the wall wouldn’t work whilst being pursued by the E.M.M.I. I may be looking at it from rose-tinted glasses but Fusion and Zero Mission felt tighter, not sure if it’s because they were sprite based.
The bosses have been great so far. Random button mashing doesn’t work. Stopping and thinking about what the enemy is doing is key and the help tips in the loading screens were helpful. All in all, I am really enjoying it, roll on Metroid Prime 4.
GC: Sequence breaking has always been a tradition in Metroid games, which allows you to break the default progression. It’s always very hard but in Dread it allows you to do things like one-shot Kraid.
I’ve recently played, and greatly enjoyed, Metroid Dread. Really excellent first party title for Nintendo and a superb addition to the Metroid series.
I have noticed though a lot of criticism online for Metroid Dread, particularly concerning the layout of its map and a perceived lack of exploration compared to earlier titles. After I completed Metroid Dread I actually went and replayed Metroid: Zero Mission and Super Metroid straight after. With this in mind, I have to say I really don’t think this criticism is justified.
Super Metroid is actually very linear, and a new item often leads you straight to a shortcut that will take you where you need to go next. It’s also guilty of luring you into a new area and then blocking off your return until you’ve collected the items you need – sometimes by literally just closing a door behind you and refusing to open it! With a flashing door indicating the way forward. Any perceived exploration is usually just a case of wandering through a couple of doors that have dead ends before you get to the door you actually need.
I spent many more hours ‘exploring’ in Metroid Dread in the run up to the final boss battle and trying to hoover up all of the items than I ever did in Super Metroid. Which is another point! The map screen in Dread has been criticised for being too helpful. However, the fact that the map shows you what item is needed to open a door and where the power-ups are hidden actually allows the game to be incredibly devilish with its puzzles; I was disappointed in Super Metroid that most upgrades are simply lying around and not hidden at all.
Super Metroid is a truly excellent game, especially for its time, and for me probably more atmospheric than Metroid Dread (helped by a timeless soundtrack), but I think there is a definite case of rose-tinted spectacles here. By all means criticise Dread for not being innovative enough, but its map, linearity and fragmented areas are much the same as 2D Metroid has ever been.
GC: We agree. But given how long it’s been since the last new Metroid it’s no wonder people are misremembering things.
Praise and rebuke
Thanks for the Dungeon Encounters review, GC. I had no idea what this game was (I don’t own a Switch) and am shocked that Square Enix has apparently sent it out to die. I downloaded it this morning and even though I’ve only played an hour or so I can already tell it is quality game.
I don’t know if someone had a falling out somewhere along the way and this is a form of office politics but shame on Square Enix for not publishing it more. And, err… well done Square Enix on funding such an eccentric game!
Now that we are getting GTA 3, Vice City, and San Andreas making a return in the Definitive Edition, if this does well for Rockstar, and if they get enough sales of this title, do you think we will see some possible DLC or additions made to these titles? Like missions added that were originally taken out of the final versions or perhaps being able to visit areas on the map that were missed on the final versions, like GTA 3’s Ghost Town and the observatory. I wouldn’t mind being able to explore Liberty City again or a small part of it in San Andreas again, as well as the Ghost Town in GTA 3.
While these three games were released in the 2000s and downloadable content was not as popular and the PlayStation 2 didn’t come with online ready features by default now we have online consoles. Rockstar can very easily offer DLC for the Definitive Edition and add content to this title and the games that it couldn’t do before, due to limitations of the hardware back then which isn’t a problem now.
I think players would welcome these titles being given additions without it affecting any of the storyline while offering up-to-date content which would keep this collection fresh and even more enjoyable to gamers from the current and previous generations.
gaz be rotten (gamertag)
GC: The name Definitive Edition doesn’t suggest that DLC is likely. We think most people would rather they just made a new game.
I demand, demand mind, that Nintendo add a skin for Samus in Smash Bros. that shows her in her final armour from Metroid Dread. I don’t care if they’ve issued statements saying all support for the game has ended. Get. It. Done.
GC: It’s a reasonable demand.
Those faceplate guys calling the PlayStation 5 ugly have got some brass but I can’t say they’re wrong.
This week’s Hot Topic
The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Grant, who asks what do you want to see from GTA 6?
Rumours of GTA 6 have been going on for years now and yet the most recent ones suggest the game won’t be out for several years yet and perhaps not until 2025. Given that huge gap from GTA 5 what do you want to see from the new game to make the wait worthwhile?
You can focus on story, characters, setting, graphics, or everything at once but what do you want from the next GTA 6 and its online companion? For example, would you prefer a brand new GTA Online 2 or an extension to the existing game?
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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.
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