Friday, August 31, 2012

MadCap's Mad Rantings - "No Dawnguard for PS3?", Addendum

More nuggets of wisdom from Pete Hines, who made a Twitter post a few days ago that has a few people in right state. "No Timeline" for release on PS3, Pete?  As I recall, when you announced the thing, the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 were supposed to be on the same date.  I could be wrong, but I seem to recall that. Then the delay. Alright, fine, delays happen. But again, I point you to my previous ranting for why this is kind of a problem.

Oh, and a minor problem with IGN but how do you have an 8 out of 10 rating for DLC on Playstation 3 that isn't actually out on Playstation 3 yet? Seems you all are just a little too eager to please...just saying...

MadCap's Mad Rantings - "No Dawnguard for PS3?"

Okay, so, I was linked to this, thanks to a friend of mine. I've already expressed my disdain that "Hearthfire" is coming out on Xbox before Dawnguard is released on PS3, but this just has me confused.  Bethesda reps are claiming that, to quote the article, the "issue" is "difficult to solve", but doesn't actually state what exactly they mean by that. So...what is the issue, Bethesda?  They don't say, only saying that "we are working together with Sony to try to bring you this content" and "We understand the frustration when the same content is not available on all platforms."

Yeah, guys, I would say there are some people who are frustrated. I'm even frustrated, and I don't even play on PS3.

A possible explanation for the "issue" might have come from J.E. Sawyer, who you all might remember as one of the fellas from Obsidian that worked on Fallout: New Vegas.  Him claiming that perhaps it was a lag issue that affected both New Vegas and Fallout 3 on PS3, which were also a problem for Skyrim during launch on that same platform.  However, Pete Hines - the VP of PR and marketing for Bethesda - refuted the claim, stating that Sawyer "brings up issues we solved long ago" and that he "did not work on Skyrim nor this engine and his comments don't reflect how the current tech works."

However, he doesn't at all elaborate on what the actual issue is. Not even giving us a vague hint of something.  So, is it just denial on his part and Sawyer is actually completely right regardless of how much he "did not work on Skyrim"?

Seriously, Bethesda? What is going on? Is it an actually game issue? Is it an issue with Sony? I've found no comment from Sony on the matter, just part of Hines' statement that "we are working together with Sony to try to bring you this content." So...what's the deal? You're being unnecessarily vague about what's going on, and it's a real piss poor way to try and sate your PS3 fanbase.  

So is it the software? Is it you guys at Bethesda? Is it Sony? Is it even, dare I think, Microsoft using their silver tongues to get more 360s purchased before the end of this console generation?

...seriously (Bethesda or Microsoft), if you guys are trying this as a marketing tool, then go sit in the corner and think about what you've done.

I really would just like some kind of explanation for this, Bethesda. Being vague and dancing around the issue without actually telling us what exactly is the issue is tantamount to...some simile that I have neither the stability of mind nor the patience to concoct at the moment.

In conclusion, Bethesda, just say what's going on. If you came out and said there was a problem, explained what it was, you'd probably end up getting at least a tedium of respect for it.  Or at the very least, people would be less frustrated with you. I just hope you guys are working on this like you say you are. Ask your buddies at Bioware, Hell hath no fury like that of a gamer scorned.

MadCap's Game Reviews - "Cthulhu Saves The World"

"Box Art"

Cthulhu is a name that everyone knows.  Wait, you don’t? Okay.  Created by writer H.P. Lovecraft, Cthulhu is a giant squid god who waits beneath the sea to spread madness and chaos when he awakens.  Regardless, he’s a pretty big part of the culture, being the subject of various stories and even a few episodes of South Park (no, I’m serious).  He’s also been the subject or a part of many a video game, such as Call of Cthulhu, Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened, and Scribblenauts.

Of course, out of those three games, I’ve only played the third one and the Great Old One’s appearance in that game is actually very much similar to how this game goes.  An indie game available for download from the Xbox Live Arcade from Zeboyd Games, the game details Cthulhu arriving on Earth to bring chaos and destruction.  However, almost as soon as he arrives, a mysterious stranger in silhouette uses some magical ritual or another to deny Cthulhu of all his grand evil powers and leave him washed up on a beach somewhere.  Thus, having read the text dialogue of the Narrator (and showing us that the Fourth Wall will soon be in many, many pieces), Cthulhu begins an epic quest to regain his lost power by becoming a true hero.

Waaaaait! Where have I seen this beThor?
This game just gets me for the humor.  Cthulhu himself is just hilarious, and makes cracks about just about everything from the style of gameplay to the various NPCs we run into, and even his own mythos.  He starts taking on followers because, in his words “The great Cthulhu requires groupies! You shall do.” And he doesn’t really quite grasp the whole ‘true hero’ concept, but he does try, bless him. And outside of the Great Old One, there’s plenty of humor in all sorts of places, such a follower called Umi – a water mage – wondering (in a completely not ironic way, I might add) what it must be like to be named after your profession.

The game itself is a shameless throwback to the early 90s style of JRPGs, with everything from the Final Fantasy-esque battle system to the soundtrack.  It’s really neat and well done and shows a lot of love and respect for its inspirations, which I have to say I really admire in developers.  Always nice to see developers paying homage to where they came from, so long as it’s not shoehorned into the game in some way that’s ludicrous (oh, hey there, Duke Nukem Forever!).  In this case, the influence is everything to this game, and it shows. Of course, that doesn’t mean that Zeboyd isn’t afraid to poke fun or invert some of the clich├ęs of JRPGs. 

Now, mind you, I don’t usually care for JRPGs, but this game really got my attention and I really enjoyed it.  It shows the real effort and thought that went into crafting it, even if I’m not big on the turned based combat.  Really, that’s my only gripe about it, and it’s not really that big of a deal.  The game still works and its enjoyable, which is all I can ask for.

…so, I have my Indie cred now, right?

I mean…Minecraft, and now this…so…I have it, right?


Cthulhu Saves The World is now available for download from the Xbox Live Arcade, and from Steam on PC from Zeboyd Games.

This review is based on the Xbox 360 version.