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PS3

Minecraft screenshots photo
Minecraft screenshots

A cartload of Minecraft: Story Mode Episode 4 screenshots


Better late than never
Jan 04
// Darren Nakamura
Vacation travel kept me from being able to get to the latest episode in Telltale's Minecraft: Story Mode right away. I just finished it, and as always, I had my finger on the screenshot button the whole way through. Mayb...
PSN is down photo
PSN is down

Sony is working to bring PlayStation Network back online


Let's pass the time
Jan 04
// Jordan Devore
Having issues with PlayStation Network today? We're right there with you. Sony has confirmed it's aware of the problems. "We are still working on resolving today's issues with PSN," tweeted SCEA's official support line. "Than...
PS Plus photo
PS Plus

An oldie but a goodie headlines January's PlayStation Plus free games


And not much else
Dec 30
// Brett Makedonski
PlayStation's ringing in the new year by turning back the clock almost two decades. Double Fine's 2015 remake of Grim Fandango (from 1998) is the game that's meant to stand out in January's lineup of PlayStation Pl...
PSN sale photo
PSN sale

PlayStation Store's newest sale has some good deals on From Software games


You need more games, right?
Dec 29
// Zack Furniss
If you didn't get that game you wanted over the holidays (and it happens to be one of these 94 titles on sale), I've got good news for you. The Holiday Headquarters sale on the PlayStation Store has some stuff you might be in...
Amplitude photo
Amplitude

FreQuency mode comes to Amplitude reboot


To tunnel or not to tunnel
Dec 23
// Vikki Blake
The rebooted Amplitude will feature a FreQuency mode which turns the otherwise flat tracks into 3D tunnels. "In the original Amplitude, we got away from the tunnel design of FreQuency and flattened out the tracks," Harmo...
Attack on Titan photo
Attack on Titan

Here's lots and lots of spoiler-filled Attack on Titan screenshots


Very closely following the anime
Dec 22
// Joe Parlock
Koei Tecmo has released a whole shedload of new screenshots for its upcoming Attack on Titan game. They show off some new playable characters, as well as some more uh… spoilery things. If you don’t want spoilers,...
Joey JoJo photo
Joey JoJo

JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Eyes of Heaven is coming west


From CyberConnect 2
Dec 21
// Chris Carter
If I hear the phrase "CyberConnect 2," I'm usually in. Although they've been consigned to creating licensed anime games for years, they've also crafted a few original joints, most notably Asura's Wrath -- one of my perso...
Not PS3 photo
Not PS3

Tales of Berseria is coming to PS4 and PC in the west


First woman-led Tales tale
Dec 21
// Steven Hansen
Bandai Namco's Tales of Berseria was announced in the middle of this year for PS3 and PS4 in Japan. That has since received a 2016 launch date in Japan. Today, the company confirmed its plan to bring the newest Tales of game...

Review: Yakuza 5

Dec 17 // Kyle MacGregor
Yakuza 5 (PS3)Developer: SegaPublisher: SegaMSRP: $39.99 Released: December 8, 2015 (NA/EU)  December 6, 2012 (JP) The tale unfurls from five seemingly unrelated vantage points, picking up two years after the events of Yakuza 4 with former yakuza and series protagonist Kazuma Kiryu attempting to live a quiet life as a cab driver in Fukuoka. Of course, our hero can't seem to escape his past, and with trouble brewing, it isn't long before he's pulled out of his taxi and back into the fray. Far to the north, Tojo strongman Taiga Saejima is nearing the end of a prison sentence in Hokkaido, where he, despite being 2,000 miles away from the events in Fukuoka, feels the ripple effects of what's going on. Meanwhile, Kiryu's adoptive niece Haruka has left her home in Okinawa to chase dreams of becoming a pop star in Osaka, where old friend Shun Akiyama, the affable moneylender from Yakuza 4, also happens to be setting up a new office for his company Sky Finance. Tossed into the mix is newcomer Tatsuo Shinada, a disgraced former baseball player living hand-to-mouth in a seedy corner of Nagoya after being thrown out of the league on suspicion of game-fixing. He, more so than the rest of the cast, appears to have little to do with the goings on of the criminal underworld, much less the tensions between the Omi Alliance and Tojo Clan. And yet he too becomes involved in this nationwide clash between gangs as everything intertwines and comes to a head. Speaking of heads, chances are, unless you're intimately familiar with Japanese geography or the series in general, that synopsis might have left your's spinning. With such a rich backstory and so many characters, locations, and groups, it can be difficult for even the best of us to fully grasp what's going on. But I suppose that's part of the charm; the complicated interweaving of everything makes for one hell of a soap opera delving into the fascinating world of Japan's organized crime families. Another strength of Yakuza 5, and the series in general, is the painstaking lengths at which Sega goes to make that world feel real. Everything from bustling city streets to the convenience stores and ramen shops is rendered with such attention to detail, it might just be the closest you can come to visiting Japan without hopping on a plane. In relief of that realism is the gameplay, which has a certain air about it akin to a smell that can send you back to a specific place and time. Whether you're brawling with gangsters, drag racing, fishing, participating in a FPS snowball fight, hunting, or playing Virtua Fighter or Taiko Drum Master in the arcade, the whole experience feels very much like a Dreamcast-era arcade game. Cut between the ultra-serious story of conspiracy and deadly consequences is a pastiche of ridiculous, over-the-top (and cloyingly dated) mini-games that serve to lighten the mood, smack you in the face, and remind you that it's a video game -- not just a television drama. Nowhere is this more evident than Haruka's portion of the story, which transforms the experience (for a while, at least) into an idol simulation with Hatsune Miku: Project Diva-esque rhythm game sequences and handshake meet-and-greet sessions with fans. Sadly, none of these elements are handled with the same care and dedication given to the story or world-building, which is a real shame, and leaves the experience feeling somewhat archaic. The fighting, in particular, hasn't seen much of a leap forward since the series debuted a decade ago on PlayStation 2. Even considering how long it took Sega to localize this particular entry, its stiff combat just feels woefully antiquated in contrast with most action games on the market these days. However, despite some rough edges like that or a bizarre fixation with hammering home an overarching theme about "dreams" near the point of self-parody, Yakuza 5 provides dozens upon dozens of hours of legitimate entertainment, the sort that kept me engaged and constantly left me torn between rushing ahead to see what twists and turns the story would take next and poking my nose into every single nook and cranny to explore the hostess clubs, remote mountain shrines, and everything in between. Yakuza 5 is exactly the sort of game the expression "greater than the sum of its parts" was made to describe. Each facet of the experience, taken individually, leaves room for improvement, but, reflecting on my time with Yakuza 5, I can't conjure much in the way of disappointment. Some bumps notwithstanding, it's a hell of a ride, one that I heartily recommend. [This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]
Yakuza 5 review photo
Who says crime doesn't pay?
With the chairman of the Omi crime syndicate on his deathbed, an uneasy truce with the Tojo Clan hangs in the balance. Anticipating a conflict, Tojo boss Daigo Dojima travels to Fukuoka in search of allies. But before an agre...

Minecraft: Story Mode photo
Minecraft: Story Mode

Minecraft: Story Mode Episode 4 trailer gathers the Order of the Stone


For the 'Wither Storm Finale'
Dec 17
// Darren Nakamura
Minecraft: Story Mode: A Block and a Hard Place is gearing up to release next week, so today we get the requisite launch trailer for it. This episode is promised to be the "Wither Storm Finale," with the last episode in the s...

Review: King's Quest: Rubble Without a Cause

Dec 17 // Chris Carter
King’s Quest: Rubble Without a Cause (PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One [reviewed])Developer: The Odd GentlemenPublisher: Sierra EntertainmentReleased: December 16, 2015MSRP: $9.99 per episode / $40 for the "Complete Collection" [No major spoilers are mentioned for the current episode, although events of previous episodes will inevitably be discussed.] Rubble picks up some time after the first tale, after Graham has become king. He's still the same lovable old rascal, but right from the get-go you can see the toll that his new responsibility has taken on him. Graham is chipper and the tone is still light starting out, but you can tell that the developers are slowly easing us into a more serious method of storytelling. Without spoiling too much, Graham and a few members of his kingdom have been taken hostage by goblins, who reside in an underground kingdom. Given his height, he's been tasked with a few daily chores, which allows him access to the tunnels, while the others are forced to rot in prison cells. As you can imagine, a few familiar faces return, but you'll get to meet a few new characters as well. What I love about this setup is that it feels connected to the first episode, but also maintains its own identity. You get to see Graham's relationship with other characters grow in a meaningful way -- even with many of his adversaries. While the goblins can't talk, the animations are incredibly expressive (just like Graham) and full of life. For example, upon entering the dungeon, Graham is exhausted, walking around in a hilariously lethargic manner. After gaining his strength back his state will alter, as will the captives over time. The animation team really deserves a shoutout here, as they deserve to have a long career ahead of them. [embed]326509:61517:0[/embed] In a stark contrast to the first episode, Rubble takes a decidedly more old school approach. You're basically given a giant playground to roam around in, which is gated off by Graham's own "strength meter." It's here that the aforementioned kingly choices will come in, as you'll need to juggle the needs of three prisoners in addition to your own. If you eat -- you can explore more of the cave -- but you'll risk having a member of your kingdom starve. It's such a small, almost gamey thing (it even has heart meters), but since I already had an emotional attachment with these characters, it worked. I was legitimately stressed out (in a good way) trying to keep everyone happy, while constantly divining solutions to secrets in my head. You'll need to keep your wits about you too, as a few puzzles even had me writing down a few in-game events on paper. Again, it's far more detailed than any Telltale game, without getting resorting to "pixel-hunting" and overly frustrating cryptic solutions. Also, if you didn't enjoy the action sequences in the last episode, they're basically non-existent here. The art style is still stunning, and that Don Bluth feel is intact. The goblin's caves also feel unique compared to the mostly above-ground setting of the first episode, and the scale is grand without being too overwhelming. Layout-wise, there's basically a few giant wheels with several spokes -- it's enough where it will be helpful to remember rooms off-hand. In terms of quality of life updates, the entire package gained a skip button in this latest update, which is incredibly useful for repeating dialogue or events. I haven't really noticed much carry-over from the previous tale, but choices made in Rubble that will impact future episodes are somewhat evident -- plus, there's a meta-narrative teased at the end. Second parts tend to be troublesome for episodic series, as they often feel like transitional stories that merely set the table for what's to come. But with King's Quest: Rubble Without a Cause, characters are growing right before our eyes with a subtle and effective tonal shift. The Odd Gentlemen also nailed the script, as it feels like a standalone episode that's also connected to the episodic format as a whole. We still have three tales to go, but for now, I'm feeling pretty good about King's Quest. [This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]
King's Quest review photo
I really can wait to be king
The first episode of the newly minted King's Quest series really took me by surprise. While I had been loosely following it for years, I never expected it to be one of my favorite games of the year. The cast, the animati...

Dark Souls photo
Dark Souls

Dark Souls players have found every item, says Miyazaki


Y'all did it
Dec 16
// Jordan Devore
As much as fans have pored over Dark Souls and will continue to do so for years to come, it feels like the series' mysteries may never be fully solved -- that no matter how hard we collectively search, there will always be mo...
PSN sale photo
PSN sale

The PSN holiday sale has added new deals


Week two
Dec 15
// Jordan Devore
The second week of the PlayStation Network holiday sale is a step down, for my personal tastes, but maybe you'll see it in a different light. Jamestown+ is only a few bucks, though, so that has to get a nod. One of my all-tim...

Review: The Bit.Trip

Dec 15 // Ben Davis
The Bit.Trip (PS4 [reviewed], PS Vita, PS3)Developer: Choice ProvisionsPublisher: Choice ProvisionsMSRP: $9.99 (Cross-Buy)Released: December 5, 2015 (PS4, PS Vita), TBA (PS3) The Bit.Trip is a collection of all six games in the Bit.Trip series which were originally released on WiiWare, similar to Bit.Trip Complete for Wii and Bit.Trip Saga for 3DS from a few years ago. It may have a different name than the other compilations, but it's largely the same aside from the controls, menus, and a few extras. The Bit.Trip differs in that it offers Trophies and leaderboards, which already existed for the PC versions of the games, but not for the Wii and 3DS versions. However, it's lacking all of the bonus content and extra challenge levels introduced in Bit.Trip Complete. Those extras would have been a nice addition here as a way to entice people who have already played some of the games before, but as it stands, it's basically just a straightforward compilation. [embed]326911:61531:0[/embed] Even so, the Bit.Trip games still hold up incredibly well, and the price is perfect for anyone looking to experience them again (or for the first time). All six games can be accessed from the slick main menu, featuring some neat concept art whenever a title is selected. Each game also allows the player to choose between Easy, Normal, or Hard difficulty settings, which is nice because the Bit.Trip games can be quite difficult, even on Easy! For those who haven't played Bit.Trip before, the series spans several different genres with an emphasis on rhythm-based gameplay, all held together with similar themes to tell the story of the life and death of Commander Video. Bit.Trip Beat and Bit.Trip Flux are very Pong-like in nature, requiring the player to move a paddle up and down to bounce incoming beats back to the rhythm. Bit.Trip Runner switches things up as a rhythmic auto-running platformer, while Bit.Trip Fate takes the series in another drastically different direction as a musical on-rails shooter. Bit.Trip Core and Bit.Trip Void are a bit harder to describe, but they both offer gameplay that is completely unique to the series. Core gives players control of an X and Y axis which can zap any beats that pass over them, while Void has players controlling an ever-expanding black hole which must consume other black shapes while avoiding white ones. Void is actually my personal favorite of the series, simply because I've never played anything else quite like it. The biggest difference for the PlayStation versions of these games is of course going to be the controls. I found playing with the Dualshock 4 to be quite comfortable and intuitive, easily on par with the Wii controls. Both Core and Void let the player choose between the left analog stick or the d-pad for movement. I found the analog stick to be preferable in most situations, although the d-pad was useful for a certain boss in Void which requires precision movements, and some players will probably prefer to use the d-pad to play Core (I found it to be a little uncomfortable after a while). Fate uses both analog sticks -- one for movement and one for aiming and shooting -- and it felt perfect. The controls for Runner are about what you'd expect, since it only requires simple button inputs. It would be kind of hard to mess those up. As for Beat and Flux, the controls work similarly to the Wii Remote in that you simply have to tilt the Dualshock 4 forward and back to move the paddle. It seemed to really pick up on my hands shaking though, which caused the paddle to sort of vibrate slightly up and down all the time. This made it feel as though I didn't have as much control over the paddle as I would have like, but it wasn't too much of a deal-breaker for me since I wasn't going for high scores or anything. However, it did make the final boss of Beat especially difficult since it's easier to win by hitting the beats back with the very tip of the paddle. I kept missing even the slow-moving beats by the slightest degree, most likely because of the vibrations. Finally, for players interested in leaderboards, they'll be happy to know that each game has separate leaderboards for every individual level, divided between the three difficulty settings. These can be accessed directly from the main menu or individually from the menus of the specific games. While The Bit.Trip could have been made marginally better with the addition of any kind of bonus content (such as the extra challenges found in Bit.Trip Complete), it's still a solid compilation of an excellent series of games. Thankfully, they hold up just as well on PlayStation consoles as they did on the Wii. If you still haven't taken the dive into the rhythmic, arcade-y goodness of Bit.Trip, or if you've been looking for a reason to play through it all again, now would be the perfect time to do so. [This review is based on a retail build of the game purchased by the reviewer.]
The Bit.Trip review photo
SERIES.COMPLETE
The Bit.Trip series holds a special place in my heart. With a wonderful blend of rhythm-based mechanics and arcade-style gameplay spanning various genres, the games are easy to pick up, quick to fall in love with, and yet inc...

Noby Noby Boy photo
Noby Noby Boy

After six years, Noby Noby Boy's Girl has completed her journey


Ending sequence revealed!
Dec 15
// Ben Davis
Well this was sudden! We just heard last month that Noby Noby Boy's Girl had finally reached Pluto. Shortly after, she has already looped around and made her way back to Earth, ending her journey where it began. I figured it ...
Guitar Hero Live photo
Guitar Hero Live

One-on-one rival battles have come to Guitar Hero TV


Plus some other minor changes to GHTV
Dec 15
// Joe Parlock
When it comes to Guitar Hero Live, the one song I kick arse at is "Everybody Talks" by Neon Trees. I know it’s not considered “rock enough” for a Guitar Hero game by some people, but they’re obviously ...
Tony Hawk photo
Tony Hawk

The UK has been spared the last-gen port of Pro Skater 5


Not releasing in the UK
Dec 15
// Joe Parlock
[Update: Despite saying it wouldn't be released on Xbox 360, Pro Skater 5 has popped up on the Xbox Live Marketplace, costing £24.99. It isn't available on the PS3, so this might well be a mistake on Activision's part. ...
Bastion photo
Bastion

It's the last day to get Bastion on PS4 and Vita for less than $3


You done good, Kid
Dec 14
// Brett Makedonski
The Kid just rages for a while. He knows it's a fool's errand to try to rage forever. He's smarter than that. The Kid has already seen one Calamity and that's enough for a lifetime. Come December 15, The Kid figured it'd be b...
Destiny photo
Destiny

Destiny with all the DLC is cheaper than just The Taken King add-on today


Savings that will have you over the moon
Dec 14
// Brett Makedonski
As we inch toward the end of the year, retailers keep doing all they can to turn their existing inventory into profit. Destiny is the beneficiary of the holiday sales creep today, as the legendary edition of the game is ...
Tony Hawk 5 photo
Tony Hawk 5

Delayed last-gen Tony Hawk 5 drops this week


But does anyone still want it?
Dec 13
// Kyle MacGregor
Following the launch of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 5 on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, Activision delayed the title's launch on last generation platforms. This was done to allow developer Robomodo to fix many of the bugs p...
Minecraft: Story Mode photo
Minecraft: Story Mode

Minecraft: Story Mode Episode 4 will be home for Christmas


Releasing December 22
Dec 11
// Darren Nakamura
It's almost bizarre to think that the first episode of Minecraft: Story Mode was out less than two months ago, and here we are gearing up for the fourth in the series. Episode Four, A Block and a Hard Place releases on PC on ...
PSN sale photo
PSN sale

PlayStation Network's holiday sale is up


Week one
Dec 09
// Jordan Devore
Darren has been talking up Tales from the Borderlands for months now. I don't care much for Borderlands, but I have finally followed his advice and downloaded "Telltale's best series to date." What got me? A sale, of course! ...

New Persona 5 plot points differentiate it from previous games

Dec 09 // Steven Hansen
[embed]325538:61467:0[/embed] Ryuji meets the protagonist in April, on the first day of school, and ends up a crucial part of starting the group of phantom thieves. With a shared secret, and their loyal reliance on each other, he and the protagonist make great partners in crime. He has kind of a mischievous personality, and through their exploits as the phantom thieves, he wants to reform society and make their names infamous around the world. Ann is one of the game’s heroines. Since she’s lived abroad, she has a distinct, foreign air about her that draws people’s attention. However, they also tend to keep her at an emotional distance because of it. Yusuke has great artistic talent, and he’s seen as an oddball who thinks differently than most people. Lastly, there’s Morgana... At first glance, you might assume [he or she is] merely the mascot character of this title, but [he or she is] quite well-informed on the strange 'other world'; more so than the protagonist and his team. Morgana, the protagonist's gender-less (so far) live-in cat, doesn't understand its own origin, and is seeking answers. It seems like Persona 5 is trying to raise more questions in general, versus cobbling together a feel-good group (not that the series doesn't get grim). "Picaresque heroes are fun, and you might enjoy their exploits or admire them in a work of fiction, but whether you’d actually want to be like them is a whole different story, isn’t it?" Hashino asks. "That's our stance in this game. A group of high school kids, dreaming of becoming masked vigilantes, try to cause a big stir in society. It's quite different from the previous games' protagonists who had no choice but to solve the mysteries they were confronted with. We think that sense of agency is one of the charms of this title." Party members' Persona's appearance are meant to reflect the characters' personality, though the protagonist isn't a French crime literature nerd though his Persona, Arsène, comes from the French literary tradition that Lupin the Third comes from. "The general public's love towards famous, fictional picaresque heroes manifest as Personas for the team," Hashino said. Basically everything Hashino says about Persona 5 leads me to believe we're in for the appropriate post-Catherine turn for the series despite the familiarity and high school setting. I mean, check the theme, something so many games seem to lack entirely: "mankind’s tendency to each view the world through their own individually distorted sense of reality – and its consequences on society and relationships." Dope! I am jazzed to play this for 14 hours a day at the exclusion of all else, including friends, family, and hygiene, as I did with Persona 4: Golden. New Persona 5 Details You Won’t Find Anywhere Else [Game Informer]
Persona 5 details photo
Active not reactive
Game Informer has new Persona 5 details you won't find anywhere else, well, except for here, or any other place you're reading them in summation, thanks to an interview with director Katsura Hashino. Hashino explains how the ...

Lego Avengers photo
Lego Avengers

I'm warming up to Lego Marvel's Avengers


But I'll still wait for a sale
Dec 09
// Jordan Devore
Now that TT Games has begun showing more locations and characters in Lego Marvel's Avengers, I'm starting to come around. Officially, the open-world locales are Asgard, Barton Farm, Malibu, New York City, "S.H.I.E.L.D. Base E...
Resident Evil Zero photo
Resident Evil Zero

Resident Evil Zero will launch on January 19, 360 owners don't get cheerleader outfit


Bummer
Dec 08
// Chris Carter
Resident Evil Zero will arrive on January 19, 2016, Capcom has announced. It will be priced at $19.99, and at launch, will drop on PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One. The package will include Wesker Mode and updated modern ...

Beyond: Two Souls is very much the same game on PS4

Dec 08 // Vikki Blake
Ellen Page and Willem Dafoe lead an otherwise unremarkable cast in the tale of Jodie Holmes, a seemingly ordinarily girl blessed - or cursed, depending upon your viewpoint - with an extraordinary secret. Abandoned by her adoptive parents (all the hallmarks of a superhero origins tale, I know) and essentially brought up by Dr. Dawkins, her parent-by-proxy at the paranormal agency at which she lives, Jodie’s tale is at once both a Teenager Simulator and an episode of the X-Files, her life inevitably dictated by the fiercely protective entity, Aiden, inexplicably linked to her. The story unfolds as we step into non-sequential chapters of Jodie’s life, watching - and occasionally orchestrating - the girl’s passage from child, to teen, to woman. The vignettes focus on the key moments of her life that shape both her growth and her relationship with Aiden, but also those rites of passages familiar to all of us who’ve rebelled (if unsuccessfully) growing up.   While Page’s portrayal of protagonist Jodie Holmes is perfectly fitting in a perfunctory kind of way, her story fails to resonate fully, possibly because the choppy, Lost-esque out-of-sequence storytelling means you rarely grow with her, your time together boxed into disparate adult/child/adult/child again chapters that feel oddly insular.  There’s also very little consequence to the decisions you directly influence. Regardless of what you choose to do - or don’t do - to your emotionally-frozen father or those assholes in the bar, the story marches on regardless, with only a handful of actions having a meaningful impact on the story before you.  It’s here where we welcome one of the PlayStation 4 version’s new, and most requested, features. If you were put off by the original game’s pick ‘n’ mix story delivery you can now choose to explore Jodie’s tale in the full chronological order. While the original time-jumping version is (naturally) still available, it offers a fresh take to those who who’d like to take an alternative - and perhaps more comprehensible - route to the game’s finale.  [Image courtesy of Digital Foundry] The original PlayStation 3 game occasionally spluttered with the weight of Quantic Dream’s boundary-pushing, but the PS4 remaster performs sweetly. Sony are keen to ensure we know about the 1080p rescale and enhanced graphics - which include motion blur, bloom, field of depth and boosts to the game’s celebrated lighting/shadowing effects - are what sit at the heart of this remaster, and to be honest, the game delivers here in every sense.  Whereas the PS3 version occasionally hiccuped with visual noise and juttery transition, for the most part, the PlayStation 4 version handles the strain with little discomfort. Two years ago there was little we could critique about the graphics (come on, it looked amazing on a near-end-of-life console) and now, able to compare the new with the old, we can see the tangible improvements. The lighting looks and feels organic, with the corresponding shadows smoother and more blended. Most marked perhaps is the introduction of camera-sensitive field-of-depth lens, a tool that naturally softens the fore- and backgrounds with beautiful results, albeit occasionally at the cost of sharpness.  Though it does run at 1080p, PlayStation 4’s version of Beyond hits that marker by compromising on your ratio, presenting a 1920x817 resolution with a cinematic framing. While the assets are left mostly untouched and recycled from the PS3 version, in some places - such as the Embassy, for instance - a side-by-side comparison (thanks, Digital Foundry!) shows that though most PS3 assets have been recycled, in some instances the graphics have been replaced or improved, with wallpaper and flooring textures in particular benefiting from the refresh.  As you might expect, however, the things that might have frustrated us the first time around - Aiden’s cumbersome control scheme, for instance, or the spoon-fed narrative waypoints - remain untouched. I didn’t enjoy my time operating as Aiden in 2013, and nothing’s changed. Aiden can now (kind of) communicate with you via the speaker in your controller, but if it’s designed to heighten immersion, for me it simply achieves the opposite. And once again, the possibilities here - your natural curiosity to explore as Aiden, perhaps, or your desire to take control of an undesirable - are curtailed. The pacing still feels mismatched and uneven, with some chapters whizzing pass in minutes, and others feeling like they’re been (unnecessarily) drawn out for hours ... particularly as the gameplay’s irregular prompts are sometimes painfully overt, whereas in others they’re frustratingly absent.  Also new, besides the spiffy graphics and all, is the Telltale-esque stats page at the end of each chapter. Though some may flinch at the spoilerific alternative story branches that hint at opportunities you may not have known was possible, for me, it gave a tantalising glimpse at the alternatives, and offers huge temptation to jump back in and replay alternative routes… as well as ascertain what were the popular - and not so popular - decisions taken by other players facing the same dilemmas. Whilst the things that bugged me before still annoy me, I wasn’t sorry that I replayed Beyond: Two Souls. Regardless of the execution, Beyond remains an ambitious project, and I’m all for developing playstyles that deviate from what what’s become the norm, particularly if doing so attracts hitherto “non-gamers” to our beloved pasttime. Quantic Dream’s stunning visuals and engaging narrative mean the game just falls on the right side of boring - it’s just the rehash of those QTEs and the curiously disjointed storytelling that frustrates, not the tale nor the presentation itself.   If you enjoyed it on the PlayStation 3 and relish the chance to revisit Jodie's story, now boosted by enhanced visuals and the new Experiments expansion - as well as the chance to live Jodie's life chronologically - then you won't be disappointed. But if you intentionally side-stepped Beyond: Two Souls the first time around, there’s probably little here that will tempt you back... particularly if you like your storytelling charged with meaningful agency. For those who missed out last generation and remain intrigued by Quantic Dream’s unique and ambitious game? I can’t say it isn’t pretty. It’s just a shame that that’s all it is, really.  
Beyond: Two Souls photo
It's pronounced A-DEN, Jodie, not I-DEN!
When Beyond: Two Souls released at the end of 2013, it epitomised not just the lofty ambitions of creator David Cage, but also the capability still lurking in the PlayStation 3’s ageing infrastructure. But whilst it&r...

PlayStation photo
PlayStation

12-month PlayStation Now subscription available for $100 in US


Welcome all these Warner Bros. games
Dec 07
// Vikki Blake
Sony is offering a new PlayStation Now 12-month subscription for $100. Starting tomorrow, December 8, you'll be able to access "hundreds" of PS3 games for more than 55% off the regular monthly subscription price, which equates to roughly $9 a month. Sony is being coy about how long the deal will be live, stating it's a "limited-time only" offer.
Attack on Titan photo
Attack on Titan

Koei Tecmo's Attack on Titan gets a Japanese release date


February 18, 2016
Dec 07
// Joe Parlock
We’ve known for a while now that Koei Tecmo’s Attack on Titan game would be coming to PS3, PS4 and PS Vita in February.  Now thanks to Gematsu, we appear to have an actual Japanese release date: February 18, ...
Bit.Trip photo
Bit.Trip

Bit.Trip collection coming to PS4, PS3, Vita


Cross-buy and cross-save for $10
Dec 05
// Kyle MacGregor
All six of Choice Provision's original Bit.Trip games now available on PlayStation systems, Sony announced today during its keynote address at the PlayStation Experience in San Francisco. The collection will support both cros...
Yakuza comes west photo
Yakuza comes west

Yakuza 5 comes west next week, Yakuza Zero confirmed for PS4


Yakuza news
Dec 05
// Steven Hansen
Yakuza 5 is coming to PS3 December 8 and Yakuza Zero is also coming to the west on PlayStation 4, Sony announced at the PlayStation Experience. SEGA's Yakuza 5 missed its mid-November release date after being announced for a western release at last year's PlayStation Experience. Yakuza Zero is a prequel set in the '80s that came to PS3 and PS4 in Japan earlier this year.

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