Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Review: Firmware Update 3.61

8:00 AM on 05.15.2011 // Jim Sterling

It's been an excruciatingly long wait, but after weeks of demands, Sony finally released the latest long-awaited installment in its iconic Firmware series, Firmware 3.61

Destructoid was unable to get an advance review copy, but we dove into the thick of it as soon as we could obtain the retail version, and we're here to give you the full summary. 

So, just how well does 3.61 stand with the rest of the series? Is this ware truly firm, or is it more of a flopware? Read on the find out!

Firmware Update 3.61 (PlayStation 3)
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Developer: Sony Computer Entertainment
Released: May 14, 2011
Price: Your spare time

From the very outset, Firmware 3.61 brings with it a tremendous sense of immersion, informing you that Update 3.61 has been found and clearing up the cliffhanger from the last game, where we were left wondering what would happen after Update 3.60. Rest assured that this installment ties up all the loose ends from the last one, though I won't explain what happens due to spoilers. Rest assured, it's a revelation. 

Roleplaying elements are back in full force, with players getting the ability to initiate the update and start their adventure. Although 3.61 is as linear as its prequels, these little divergent paths, where you can choose to update or not, really give the illusion of a more open, player-fueled experience. Although sometimes you feel like you're going on a set path, for the most part it works, with players feeling like they're really there, downloading a Firmware update in real life!

The game features a robust moral choice system, where your actions really do affect the world. Do you accept the User Agreement, or don't you? This was an agonizing decision, since you never know what could happen later. I remember that unbelievable moment in Firmware 2.0, where I accepted the User Agreement and the Kaz Hirai was harvested for delicious ADAM. Is that right? It's been so long since I did anything but download Firmware on the PS3 that my memory is a little hazy. 

Of course, once you've made your decision (I always default to accepting, as it usually leads to getting the "Good" ending), you're hit with the real meat of the story. Once again, The Green Bar makes his return, having come back to fill yet another empty tube for your pleasure. From here, you're given yet another gameplay choice. You can watch the green bar slowly fill up, or you can watch the percentage underneath slowly reach 100%. Choices! Often, I get so giddy and overwhelmed by the amount of activity on-screen that I pass out from sensory overload. 

I was shocked to find that getting to 100% did not complete the game, as the update then had to install itself. This is called emergent gameplay, and I'm impressed Sony threw that in there. 

I'm not going to tell you if the Green Bar ever does reach 100%, nor will I tell you the exact details of the amazing New Game Plus, where you get to look around your system to find that the consumer's wasted time led to no viable benefit. That's for you to explore yourself, but I'm pleased that this kind of post-end gameplay was available in the package, and not offered later as DLC like Bethesda did with Fallout 3.

With its crisp graphics and astounding sense of realism, Firmware 3.61 is a game unlike any other in a series that stands out as Sony's greatest exclusive. Some may argue that the franchise has been milked to death, with so many sequels and portable spin-offs, but I think Firmware is going strong and will be back for many, many, many installments. 

Score: 9.0 -- Superb (9s are a hallmark of excellence. There may be flaws, but they are negligible and won't cause massive damage to what is a supreme title.)

Jim Sterling, Former Reviews Editor
 Follow Blog + disclosure JimSterling Tips
Destructoid reviews editor, responsible for running and maintaining the cutting edge videogame critique that people ignore because all they want to see are the scores at the end. Also a regular f... more   |   staff directory

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding * to your whitelists.

Status updates from C-bloggers

Flegma avatarFlegma
To my surprise, I've more or less figured out Rodea Wii U controls. Still a different game from the Wii version, but not as decidedly inferior in my eyes. Did the legacy medals do anything in Wii version?
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
"Am I a kid, or a squid?" I ponder as I stare off into the horizon. A wise man once told me "Son, you can be whatever you want to be. You are only limited by your lack of ambition " And I want to be a squid. A squid now.
Parismio avatarParismio
Captain America: Civil War trailer dropped!: [youtube][/youtube]
lewness avatarlewness
Gah, wanna go Alexander farming but The Old Hunters ;_;
BaronVonSnakPak avatarBaronVonSnakPak
Holy shit, Splatoon is addictive.
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Duck Hunt was a trickier unlock than I expected. Jigglypuff, you are next on my list! [img][/img]
Nekrosys avatarNekrosys
Yay, this arrived today. Nekro is quite happy, as he's been looking forward to playing this game for a while. [IMG][/IMG]
Gamemaniac3434 avatarGamemaniac3434
Dtoid mobile has apparently broken again. This is it. This how the dtoid ends. *black hole opens, dtoid disappears*
Amna Umen avatarAmna Umen
Gave Ronin one more chance before I chucked it in the "never to be finished" pile, glad I did. It could have been so much better but as a frustrating time waster it's not bad.
StriderHoang avatarStriderHoang
I'm sitting on the Fapcast's most recent recording. I just feel like I need a day for myself after, you know, freaking out about rent.
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
Why is every Quickpost now spaced out like poems with random amounts of stanzas that never ever rhyme?
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
Was anybody else here extremely disappointed by the ending of Assassin's Creed 2?
Parismio avatarParismio
Just tried Fallout 4 on my PC Via my Cousins steam account and nope, it does not run for me very well. Buying the PS4 version it is!
OrochiLeona avatarOrochiLeona
You know who never took any shit from anybody? Dr. Blight.
Terry 309 avatarTerry 309
Am I the only one who has to pull up their sleeves to play competantly at videogames? When my hoodie's sleeves are down I play like a piece of shit but when i pull them up, I have more flexibility.
Shinta avatarShinta
PSA: Just picked up Falco amiibo at Best Buy. They had about 20 Tom Nook, 10 singles of Splatoon Boy/Girl, the Splatoon triple pack, about 30 Marths with a big sign saying "Look Who's Back!," Dark Pit, and probably about 15 others. Not too shabby.
Fenriff avatarFenriff
I long for the day that people get over their weird circle jerk hatred for FFXIII related things and just ignore things they don't care about.
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
I'm upgrading my PC on the cheap and I'm going with AMD, out of these two CPUs, wich one is better?, A8-7650K or FX-6300?
Logeon avatarLogeon
Huh, I think we broke LightningFarron19, you guys.
Archelon avatarArchelon
more quickposts



Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme

Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo

Back to Top

We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -