Our Week in Games – Week 142

Our Week in Games – Week 142

E3 is lumbering out of view like an asthmatic brontosaurus who’s late for his first job interview following a particularly dry season. While many people are starting to question the relevance of such events certainly in a post(we hope) pandemic world, it’s hard to argue against it’s impact.

This year we’ve been sideswiped by news of an Avatar game (Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora), pulled-into a dark alley by Rainbow 6 Siege: Quarantine Extraction, a title that seems to be pulling the series in a direction that it may not be best suited to, and then, frankly, given the wrong directions by a Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle sequel Sparks of Hope. 

Three titles that I wasn’t expecting- and at a time when a bit of gaming fatigue was setting in, it’s welcome news. Expect more updates to follow in the coming day(s) as we digest the revelations and we update you on anything that particularly caught our fancy.

The other piece of news(?!) that I’ve been following recently revolves around the astonishing lack of high-end GPU’s in the market at the moment. Reports are surfacing of people buying pre-built PC’s only to strip-put the 30-series GPU’s and then re-sell the remaining components, just to get hold of one.

Now one can’t fault the ingenuity of this, nor, assuming they get a decent price for the components can you fault the strategy- it’ll be significantly cheaper than buying off a scalper, but it is endemic of the utterly ridiculous situation we find ourselves in.

Cryptocurrency miners and scalpers are still managing to buy-up huge numbers of these cards when the average Joe, you know the people who’ll actually use them, cannot get hold of any. I know the suppliers are looking into ways of combating this issue but so far they’re falling massively short. It may be overly simplistic, but surely a one card per payment method approach would help matters? We shall see.

intro by Jon

Chris

I was going to get some pre-e3 thoughts pulled together this week, but instead got distracted by Going Medieval, and with musing on what DICE could be teasing as part of Battlefield 2042I’ve also been playing some of The Last of Us 2. Having traded in my PlayStation 4 last weekend to pick up an Xbox Series S for a bargain at GAME, I decided to make some progress again with the dark, brooding zombie nightmare. I probably should have finished off Resident Evil 7 before getting back into The Last of Us 2, there’s just too many zombies in my head right now. Regardless, experiencing Ellie’s adventure on a machine which doesn’t sound like a 747 taking off is a very pleasant experience as it is, and my time with the game now reminds me of just how good it is.

By the time you read this, the Ubisoft e3 press event will have been and gone, but they must me devastated that a new Mario & Rabbids Switch game was revealed ahead of their event. I’ll have thoughts on e3 as a whole in next weekends edition of Our Week in Games, but I’ll leave you with some predictions for now:

  • A new FIFA will be revealed, with substantial changes to Ultimate Team coming to stem the flow of damaging press about that game mode.
  • Nintendo won’t actually talk about the elephant in the room, that being the Switch Pro. Instead they’ll surprise release a major remaster (Super Mario Galaxy 2?) during their event.
  • Microsoft will spend a lot of time emphasising the importance of Game Pass, further distracting from a dearth of major first-party releases for the Series S|X machines this year.
  • Sony won’t be holding a press event, but will still come away looking amazing.

If you want some amusing e3 memories, GI.biz have a retrospective of the 2011 e3 event which was full of Wii U and Vita goodness. Enjoy the memories.

Jon

I’ve been in a little bit of a gaming lull. I find I go through periods where all I want to do is game, and then others where I just don’t find the drive. Escape from Tarkov’s constant cycle of ‘press release/community event’ leading to massively poor performance is starting to take it’s toll. I had to abandon my Stream on Tuesday due to the shockingly low performance I was getting.

Fans are keen to point out it’s nothing to do with the games’ architecture/net code, but when it only happens on this game and it is widely reported by even top-streamers it becomes a much stickier-wicket to defend. The core mechanics keep pulling me back as there’s nothing quite like it, currently, on the market- but this yo-yo effect makes it much easier for me to be captured by another game and the frustration only mounts when the developers seem more content in adding new content and maps to the already massively unstable game rather than fixing the underlying issues. We shall see, but I’m not sure even the new Map(s) will be enough to keeps loyal players playing.

Aside from that i’ve spent a lot of time gaming on my mobile. My old Staple of Battlevoid: Harbinger by Bugbyte-games manages to keep me ticking over. Top-Down battleship combat with lumbering capital ships, fighters and missiles streaking across the void? Yes please.

Ross

My experience this week can summed up here and here – there’s been very little else! Soon I’ll be moving on to Backbone, though, which has been released to unexpectedly mixed reviews. I’ve really been looking forward to this one, so I’m curious as to what the content of the game will be like! The developers released an open letter on social media, seemingly acknowledging the polarising reception their game has received. It’s…well, the letter is quite overwritten and I thought about it all damn day.

Either way I’ll be sure to have my review up by the end of next week.

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