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Luke Oliveira Clayton's blog

6:15 AM on 10.21.2014

Why do you think PS4 is 'winning'?

Xbo- eh-hueheheh, Playstation 4!

I've thought about this for a while. I've always been a Sony boy, always will. That being said, I loved my 360 for the first years, it had great exclusives. It was clean, efficient, a real joy. Then ( I dare say without inciting), that the PS3 really started to gain traction and momentum toward the second half of it's generation, to the point where I sold my Xbox and jumped straight back into familiar territory.

Now, the Xbone. It's an all in one media player (eurgh), it has regular updates, it's got some cool games, even the Kinect isn't complete crap, i think the concept for it is there (if not novel and slightly impeding on occasion), yet, the PS4 is quite bare bones at the moment, with even fewer features than it's predecessor. The exclusives are good too, with more coming along the way, but my real question is, why is it edging into first place? And I don't just mean edging, I mean all out dominating by sales figures and whatnot? I'd point fingers at Microsoft and their less than egalitarian policies before launch, though some linger even now with reference to the ID@Xbox program.

So what do you guys think it is, is there a little Japanese magic in the PS4, or have Microsoft done most of the seppuku for them?


6:05 PM on 10.15.2014


I'm a fan of the original Alien.

Now we have that bias out the way, let me say this is not a review. A review would entitle myself to the complete opinion gained from completing that which I would review. I have yet to complete it, but not because I get sucked into vents, not because my abdomen repeaedtly gets punctured, nor my gunshot to the head or my general neck breakage at the hands of Synthetics (first world problems, right?) This is a 'my journey so far'. A sort of diary, a little memoir of my time with Alien:Isolation. I write this because I know one day, it'll be over and that makes me sad. Sad to think that Ripley Jr. and I will have escaped this imperilment together, and that the Sevastopol station and it's adorably antiquated mechanical and electrical systems will have a shed a brief but lovely light.

Resplendent, even.

The lovely thing about it though, isn't the tense, thrilling nature of avoiding evisceration. Nor is it finding out how the Alien got on board and how this intermediary chapter weaves it's way into the narrative. It even isn't throwing a flare so that it chases after it like an overly jovial dog. It's an appreciation of how goddamn silky smooth the universe is. The doors, the tools, the sights and sounds, the old as shit computers. It's wanting to watch the movies again, and thinking to yourself "Man, that's familiar" and being thoroughly astounded that you since have more of an appreciation for the films after having lived and breathed the universe. It made watch the first four Alien movies again, halfway through the game (a laá Chris). The little bleeps and bloops, the art direction, even the style of the characters become all too apparent, as if they're deja vu (which is the reverse of what you'd expect, from going back to watch the movies) It had me yearning for more of the universe, and there's not many games you can dig more into with that respect (not ones we talk about, anyway)

Now, it's all well and good exploring and reminiscing and being absorbed by the architecture and the fateful recreation, but the majority of us are here for one reason. That.

It's sort of difficult to take take screenshots whilst it's...y'know, trying to fuck your face. 

Entering the station, I had no clue what to expect. I saw dead bodies, general chaos, but no Alien. "Does he get me now? Does he get introduced in a cutscene?" I pondered. I had no way of knowing. It's this uncertainty that first enamoured me. The game holds your hand, in much the sense someone does on a merry-go-round, then promptly lets you fly off. You don't know what to expect, and that's a treat. It's not unfair in it's presentation. You have an objective, it tells you where you need to be, but not how to get there. There's no CLICK HERE FOR THE BUTTON THAT STARTS ANOTHER CUTSCENE THAT ADVANCES THE PLOT. It treats you with maturity, with respect. Even dignity. Which you'll need, because I assure you, those qualities will be meaningless the first time the Alien gets you. And it will get you. It was 1am, I was wearing headphones, and the great big bastard came hurtling down toward me, jaws slung wide open mirroring Hades and his eternal damned kingdom. I had no choice but to hold in my wails (or breath, we can call it that too), to flap my arms and legs in the air at the sheer tension of being this guys snack. That, by the way, never stops. Y'see, save points are manual. You need to think before you go galavanting off on some hair brained, half thought adventure to collect things. If you stock up well, and find some neat stuff, you become more tense. You hide more, take fewer risks, because you don't get any checkpoints, no reassurances that you're gonna live. You might have to do everything again, and if you get caught, it'll be entirely your fault.

It could be i'm manifesting my thoughts and feelings into an articulated stream of nostalgia, colloquially known as chatting complete bollocks. But I implore you to do the same. Really, it's ace. Videogames make you think and feel all sorts of things, more intensely than music or films, I would argue. You're taking part, you're in the shoes or paws or whatever the fuck else of the person (or creature, urgh) who can make a difference and who can actively decide the outcome. No other form of media gives you that freedom. The freedom to hide in lockers and to think yourself "Yeah, I made it!" when really you were dead all along. You just hadn't realised it yet.

I guess what i'm trying to say is, I admire it's purity.


7:15 PM on 07.13.2014

What's irking me. The PS4 is irking me.

Iíve long held this belief that consoleís are the best.
Ah, ah! I can see you pulling your faces already. If youíll sheathe your slammy slammy keyboard sassages for a moment, I can explain.
(itíll only be like, 2 lines. 3 at most)

Theyíre, for me, nostalgic. Thatís what imbues them with such sway. Your parents, virgins in the hobby that are video games, bought you the one with the blue mouse or the red hairy man and that shut you up at Christmas, well into your birthday.

That was a forerunner point, a launching pad to what iím about to say.
Yísee, as iíve gotten older and in some respects, wiser, we begin to expect certain things.
Certain things that, as consumers, we feel we should have.†
For all the Xboneís flaws, it has support in spades. Updates left and right, constant feedback; it really is trying to atone for the shitstorm. Iím not exactly a fan, shelving my 360 in favour of a PS3 roughly halfway into it's lifespan, though I do confess to like the Kinect.
I know.

Mistaking my friend for me and signing me in on his Xbone is a constant source of amusement between us, however, itís first and foremost a living room machine. Thatís it. I canít see it working as anything else, itís splitting itís devotion to gaming two ways, and they donít always meet in the middle.
So naturally, iíd prefer the PS4.

My love affair for Sony aside, itís not exactly firing on all cylinders just yet. No audio CD support, an easily accessible capture gallery only recently implemented (The share button and I seldom get along) and a severe lack of apps such as Youtube and Skype. I understand, but PS Vita has it soÖyíknow. Iím not saying that the system requires these for it to be a gaming machine, it should always be a gaming machine first and foremost, with an integral focus on THE GAMES. But for it to not ship with these seemingly simple features, for it not to be able to play fucking CDís? Thatís not right. You expect the car you buy to play your tasty ass jams, not just to drive from point A to B.

Itís almost like Sony are just letting the momentum carry it forward, like theyíre just conserving energy. Theyíve put so much stock behind it, yet theyíre treating it with the same grace of the Vita. Give it claws, give it a reason to compete without infringing on itís core. Great titles and indies are one thing, but you still need to adapt.
And where the fuck is the media remote? Come on guys, my free copy of Casino Royale was watched so many times.

Kidding aside, I know all of this will happen eventually, but for it not to happen now, for it not to happen at the start? It just seems a might backward, for me personally. I wonít pretend to know or comprehend the level of intricacy or design involved in designing a system and developing it. I certainly will not play the entitled card. Who the fuck am I to demand or moan that they include features I want. I knew what I was getting into when I bought the damn thing, early gen consoles are usually void of such things.

Itís simply a curiosity. One that I had to immortalise on a community blog. I'm really sorry.   read

5:46 PM on 06.25.2014

That Spaced out feeling.

Look, this isnít an article lamenting over the good olí days. Itís more a lot of words that I had to write down.

I was playing Tomb Raider III one night after quite a nostalgic high from watching the TV show Spaced (all you ĎMuricans, you should really check that out) and a thought dawned on me; why do we find it difficult to play these old games?

Maybe itís just my problem. I find it easy to play new games, with all their flashy colours, shiny graphics and the like but once I open the proverbial scary door back to some of the best times in my life, I canít muster the enthusiasm past a fleeting thought to want to play these games.

I think Egorapter and his woefully under-realised Sequelitis said it best:
ďItís kinda like comparing a snack food to a high class dessert. You an just chomp away mindlessly at snacks because thatís how theyíre made, theyíre addictive by nature, they just make you reach for more even if you donít really want more. But a high class dessert takes some slowing down, it demands that you take a moment to really enjoy how complex and satisfying it really isĒ.

Final Fantasy, Resident Evil, Ace Combat, Tekken, Tomb Raider.
These are the only series of games that no matter which title iím playing, my full concentration is merited.
Thereís a tonne more that I adore, a litany thatís far too much to relay to you here, that Iíd simply love to sink back into my bean bag for.†

But it wonít happen. Iím broken. Iíve been spoilt and fed by the truck load of SHINY SHINY LOOK AT MEí games these past ten years. Theyíve sullied my senses and capped my mental capacity to engage and enjoy video games for the art forms they are. Iíve only myself to blame.

The always connected lifestyle of Social Media doesnít help to alleviate the ĎI want it nowí state of mind. Where we value every precious minute due to seeing everyone else spiel off theirs, thereís no singularity, no dampening zone in which I can cash in my hours and stop all perceived notions of time. By no means do I HATE everything new, itís fucking glorious. But you canít have everything, and in some ways the new life style has traded in parts of the old one to achieve itís desired effect.

These games are far more akin to chess to me. You play, you stop, you look, analyse, you think, you try, you die, you reload and eventually, youíll make this pixel perfect sweet ass jump that only the Gods could have foretold youíd do.
And the sense of accomplishment was amazing.
WAS amazing. Now I find it tedious. I find it annoying that I actually have to learn something and try again. Itís MY time theyíre wasting, iíve got other shit to d-

Stop right there. Iíve elected that I spend my time playing these video games, so I owe it to them to be patient. To actually play them. Itís convincing myself that Iím not wasting my time thatís the hardest part. Itís saying to myself Ďyou know what? I might have ground for 2 hours and had the hubris not to save. But if I die now, I wonít be a toddler. Iíll take it on the chin like a man (SEXUAL) and reload that fucker and do it all againí.

Auto-save. Youíre the marmite to my loaf.†


7:44 AM on 08.30.2013

Oh Dante, my Dante.


[sup]OHHHH IT'S OPINONS.[/sup]

That's a reference to DmC to those who aren't avid readers of Virgil's Aeneid. A game that got a lot of stick, rather unjustly in my eyes.

I can sympathize with a beloved franchise being twisted and bastardized, of course. If Uncharted's Nathan Drake suddenly rebooted into a blonde, overly short Tin Tin with the features of Kurt Russel, I'd be upset too.

But it wouldn't drive me to lunacy. Despite nostalgia and despite familiarity, innovation and the rare refresh are needed. Creativity must strive and new ideas put forth. I think that Ninja Theory did a damn good job. I applaud them for all their worth, and their sly slip in of a Union Jack on Dante's coat.

But most importantly, I know my games are still there. The games that I love and have played and cherished; haven't gone anywhere. They're still there, in my old draw, where I emphatically keep my old PS2 games and think 'yeah, these were far better', yet never actually play them.

Current generations have, and quite rightly, spoiled us. Going back to the original DmC now, with it's gut busting difficulty would put me off. Not that I think it's any less of a game, it's an absolute treat. But technology has improved, interfaces and controllers too undoubtedly so.

To put it simply, it'd be like an early adopter of Windows 95 hating the ease of use of and functionality of Windows 7. It's not a perfect analogy i'll give you that, it's probably absolute shit. †But it works for me, and maybe some of you.

So before we spew our completely justifiable twoddle because who are these shit fucks who want to REMAKE/REHASH/REBOOT our favourite GARM, just think.

Would you truly prefer Resident Evi - actually scratch that. We don't adhere to anything after No.4

Ahem, erm...Indiana Jones 4. Milked on. Same Concept, no reboot. IT WAS AWFUL.

See? Sometimes, all you need is to hit F5 for [s]my article view count[/s] FREEDOM OF CREATIVITY   read

7:41 PM on 02.18.2013

Horror Story:...involving a Horror GARME

One dark, stormy, reasonably temperate night in the UK, me and my friend were playing the original Dead Space on the mother of all difficulties. Horror had found a new place to burrow inside our ears, through our shared play through with headphonses. Dead Space had thrown curveballs at us all night, and had finally reached it's apex at around 4am.

The apex of course was 12 fucking sugars.

During Chapter 9, where the USM Valor becomes a playground for the frighteningly deranged Twitchers, something peculiar happened. Something that not even Resident Evil 1's shabby yet rainbow filtered dialogue could have ever provoked from me. I laughed. We laughed. Uncontrollably for 5 minutes in what was supposed to be the voyage of the dammed from Isaac Clarke's perspective.
I'll set the scene. Remember the room with all the malfunctioning gravity plates? Wouldn't it be great if just one Twitcher ran into it after it's little Gaul charge? Well, yeah.

In truth, I wasn't the stalwart hero I had wanted to be. My health was low, I had 3 rounds in my Cutter, I was barely able to blink without the paranoia settling in. Then, from around the corner, it looks at me. Growling, frothing, sharpening it's Game Over claws; the Over part looked pretty certain.

Then it happens. It dies instantly upon touching the grav plate, and immediately gets shoe horned into the ceiling, Maybe it was the fart noise my mind instinctively brought into the fray, maybe it was the stress and tension of not dying, now suddenly have a release valve. It could have even been Police Academy 1 in the background, but what I do remember is nothing short of fantastic. The fact Dead Space, a prideful supporter of the horror genre, made my own body dreadfully unsure as to which orifice was next in line to do it's do, to this day, was one of my fondest memories in gaming.   read

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