Square Enix sure knows how to make a splash these days. Dragon Quest XI: In Search of Departed Timewas announced today to release on the PS4, the 3DS (New 3DS Exclusive most likely) and… the NX. That’s quite a surprise given that we don’t have a release schedule for the NX yet nor any other game announced to come to it.
Well, not that surprising. Given the sales that the Wii U has achieved during its short life and the anemic support it has had from 3rd party developers.
The new Dragon Quest is going to have at least two different stories. One for the PS4 and one for the 3DS, you know like Ni No Kuni. Also like Ni No Kuni, we’ll probably never ever see the 3DS version release in America so don’t get your hopes up. No localization has been announced but I’m guessing the PS4 release will come to our shores and that’s it.
We don’t have much info about the NX version yet but it will like be similar to the PS4 one which features an open world and is being developed on Unreal Engine 4. The 3DS version is less open (DQIX style?), being developed in cooperation with Toy Logic, and will have battles in both 3D and 2D with Sprites.
Expect all of this to launch in Japan late 2016 and the PS4 version in America in late 2017.
This week’s podcast features the first one with a fully integrated Interview, this one with a local game store manager. Besides that is the normal watcha been playing and news where we talk about MLB The Show 2015 and the death of Satoru Iwata. Finally after the break we talk for a bit about what the ideal length for a game is.
There are a lot of theories, speculations, and general cries of how malicious individuals that play MOBAs can be. It spans from the trash-talkers to the game-ruiners to the all-around terrible individuals that we don’t seem to directly encounter so often outside of that environment. The question is, why are they so malicious? What makes someone log into a Dota game and start spewing sewage so vile that we would completely avoid that street if we had the choice? This is a huge and complicated topic, but I began viewing it in light of MMO communities, which are far more accepting and pleasant, and what fosters such a difference. I think the main reason comes down to the fact that MMO’s require a personal connection, while MOBAs have nothing of the sort involved in the gameplay. Again, this is not the complete picture of what’s going on, but I do think it illuminates the situation at its core: how individuals are even able to act like vicious demons that they would never let their mothers see.
A Difference of Character
First, let’s look at the types of connections we make with MMO characters as opposed to MOBA characters. MMO characters always require an individual’s input. You design their hair, eyes, skin color, height, sometimes even their voices, and there is no way that your personality is not going to come out in that process. In creating the character, you’re creating something of yourself, something you can endeavor to relate to as you play and grow with them.
On the other had, you have MOBAs, which create the characters for you. The backstories are, at best, interesting but still already told. There is nothing for you to add to, nothing that you can do to meaningfully impact that character’s core essence. What’s further, these characters already have very distinct personalities which you are going to make a judgement about. They are established persons, in a sense, and as such require no personal input. (more…)
Splatoon improves every aspect of the arena shooter genre by changing the way you move, shoot, and win. I probably shouldn’t lead with what is effectively the summation of my review but I feel it’s important to understand from the outset that Splatoon isn’t just Team Fortress with ink.
Let me do a quick breakdown. You have various weapons that shoot and/or splash ink. The ink from your weapon follows a logical trajectory, it’s not a bullet it’s ink. You can turn into a squid to move through the ink at higher speeds and with greater mobility than your non-squid form. There are various game modes that all boil down to controlling the map by covering it with your color of ink.
Killing (“splatting”) people isn’t the win/loss scenario in any mode. That’s what helps Splatoon stand out so much from the growing crowd of multiplayer arena shooters. Who cares if you die 13 times, did you help the team by protecting a beacon or firing off your special weapon at the opportune time? Then you feel accomplished. It’s hard not to come away from a winning round of Splatoon feeling like you weren’t part of a well oiled machine, even if you got rolled over by some Japanese 10 year old more times than not.
Besides just the excellent combat there are wearables you can buy that affect your stats in various ways but nothing game breaking. I was splatting people who were fully geared out in my first game of Turf War. It allows for you to customize your character without completely destroying the balance of a match. It also gives you something to spend money on and time on outside of the matches, which is nice.
There is a single player mode that mostly acts as a tutorial, it isn’t essential but some of the humor is chuckle worth and the boss fights are creative. You know what, scratch that, play through the single player just to experience the boss fights. The single player is also the best way to get yourself used to the gyro aiming used in Splatoon. Seriously, do this. The gyro is much more precise than the analog stick and if you want to be competitive (of course you do) then learn it’s intricacies.
Splatoon may not fit everyone’s definition of good times, but chances are it’s fast paced and constantly shifting battleground will keep you coming back until the next content update, which will undoubtedly add even more frenetic action and strategic inking.