The evening Inbox has more advice for young kids and gaming, as one reader gets ready for a third playthrough of NieR:Automata.
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Sex and violence
I just love that announcement about Dead Or Alive 6 which uses the promises to tone down the sexuality of previous games while offering costume customisation for the first time. in its sales pitch.
It is a game that involves men beating up girls, girls beating up girls, girls beating up men, and men beating up men. Frequently they are their own brother, sister, or daughter often justified by the most ridiculous storylines. For instance, in several cases theyre being beaten up by a relative to prevent them being beaten up by someone else. Bonkers.
Judging by the trailers theyre even introducing fatuous blood splatters on the camera lens, yet the thing theyre emphasising is a promise to tone down the sexuality. Conservative US hypocritical values seem to be ruling here where depicting violence is apparently OK but sexiness or, heaven forbid, nakedness is beyond the pale and needs censoring. Equally bonkers.
Claiming to be toning down the sexuality is just a sop to those concerned about the, justified, criticism of the Dead Or Alive series thinly disguised sexism. But sexuality and sexism are two completely different things. Unnecessarily addressing sexuality, reducing the skin on display or whatever that actually means, does not address the sexism. It all seems so disingenuous when you see those trailers too.
Do the makers actually know what your average male teenager is going to do with that costume customisation facility? Of course they do. Does anyone but the most naive really think that there is going to be the slightest nod towards political correctness in costume selection for the female characters? Once it is hacked, and it probably will be, you can be certain that there will be every sort of politically incorrect customisation possible.
I wont know whether to laugh, applaud or despair and that pretty well sums up my feeling about the Dead Or Alive franchise in general as well.
Maybe I should have left this until the weekend Hot Topic but my most anticipated game this year is Resident Evil 2 and thankfully its just a couple of weeks away. Reading that the demo is a one shot, 30 minute max taster I think is a great idea. It gives you a go and whets your appetite for more without spoiling it too much.
Spoiling it for me is probably irrelevant as I played the original to death 20 years ago, so I know pretty much whats going to happen. Nevertheless its going to make me tiptoe through it as Id be gutted if I lasted five minutes and then had to wait until release for more.
I think the anticipation and pretty much guaranteed sales around Resi 2 show that remasters/remakes when done correctly – see Shadow Of The Colossus – can easily outdo new releases and show younger gamers that hear and read about these classics exactly why their considered as such.
In response to wasimr34s letter about his son having learning difficulties and autism. I do have children myself but Im pretty naive to your childs difficulties, so please forgive me if my recommendations are a little off the mark.
I found Learning With The Pooyoos on the Wii a very good source of entertainment for my children. its fun and the learning was quite effective for my kids. It involves shapes, dancing and colours. Im not sure if you can still get it (on download, there is three of them) but Im sure another reader can help if you are indeed interested.
I also found Just Dance to be a good port of call for my kids, along with singing games.
If it helps my youngest loves video games and at three to four years old she got heavily frustrated with how poor she was and how good she wanted to be.
Im sure your son will have a lot of fun playing games in the future and will probably be able to beat you someday. Enjoy, there are good times ahead.
I hope this helped.
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Next gen cosmetics
RE: Gaz and Rocket League. I was discussing this with a mate, and we think it would be crazy to have a sequel to Rocket League. What would you add? We already know that new arenas dont really work (apart from for the more wacky modes), the gameplay is spot on, and the graphics cant really be improved much.
Its already monetised through the cosmetics. As long as their player base is reasonably strong, I dont see why they shouldnt just re-release the game on the next console. (Though should they charge? Would your current cosmetics carry over?)
Matt Woolley (he_who_runs_away – PSN ID)
PS: RE: Cranston. If I had to guess at the success of indie games on the Switch, it would be because there are relatively few other third party games. When you can be distracted by Red Dead Red Redemption II or the latest Call Of Duty, and with Nintendos first party offerings relatively thin on the ground last year, what else are people going to play?
I think the reason indie games are doing so well on the Switch is simple. Portability. I know a lot of people who will wait for a Switch version simply because it is portable.
Another reason Ive heard is the powerhouse mentality. With comments like I didnt buy a powerful console for indie games. I heard this a lot during the early PlayStation 4 days.
The third times the charm
Funnily enough, I too am currently running NieR:Automata, like my fellow Inboxer Spooky Dreamer, but I am absolutely loving it. Just finished the second playthrough and eagerly looking forward to the third tonight.
Funnily, we disagree on the different parts though – I find the shooting parts super easy, and the 2B rampages around the map as Spooky put it, kind of bland. Perhaps it is because I have loaded my character up with a chip loadout that pretty much means I have very little chance of actually dying now, and so the open world stuff is just time-wasting running from one place to another. I was so relieved when fast travel was finally unlocked.
The story is really getting good now though; replaying games is just not my thing, but the way they have done this is varied enough to hold my attention. That first section where youre still learning the game but cant save for like 45-60 minutes into it was a bit rough though. As long as you can get through that, the rest of the game should be no problem!
All the characters are great though.
PS: Also playing Celeste in the off-time from NieR. Its… fine. I dont think the story is as affecting as most people seem to say online, but the actual platforming is wonderful, if super tough. I do feel some sections drag on a bit towards the end of each area though. Perhaps thats part of the thematic intention, but I could do with them shaving some of the cruft off and making it a more compact package.
I am thinking of getting a Switch as Im a bit bored with PlayStation 4 now. Can anyone tell me if they have ironed out the problems with them, like the overheating and Joy-Con issues, as I would probably use it 90% of the time docked and could do without a £300 paperweight thats more unreliable than a Volkswagen!
Thanks in advance for any help anyone can give.
GC: Overheating was never a common problem and the Joy-Con issue was sorted out shortly after launch. Reliability is not an issue with the console, although we would advise getting a screen guard if you do pick one up – most are just £10 or so.
I saw the first half of the BBCs new Watership Down adaptation over Christmas. It was a major disappointment. I would have thought that with more time, they would have included more if not all of the El-ahrairah fables. That did not happen. Everything it did, it did worse than both the book and the iconic 1978 film. Its budget seems to have mostly gone to the cast who, apart from Olivia Colman and Ben Kingsley, dont do a great job.
But what does this have to do with video games, you ask? Well, apart from some embarrassingly stiff and robotic animation, that makes the cats in Fallout 4 seem good, there is one line that really stands out. And while I havent read the book in years, I doubt it was in the original text.
You see, Captain Holly joins the Watership rabbits before he encounters any Efrafans. Im just going to assume knowledge of the plot and characters to save time, sorry. So, Holly makes the decision to go there along with two others to try to establish diplomatic relations… of a sort. At one point, I think after witnessing Captain Campion having done something especially cruel, Holly tells him that he lacks… and this pause is important – animality. Yeah, thats right. I burst out laughing and I swear that the actor sounded embarrassed to say it.
I looked it up, and sure enough it was Kitana in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 who could turn into an adorable white rabbit and maul her foe to death like that bit in Monty Python and the Holy Grail! Captain Holly wins! Animality! I wonder what a rabbit would turn into? Surely a farmer with his gun, gun, gun – right?
I wouldve preferred if Nintendo just forgot about the New Super Mario Bros. series as well. Its such a weird name too, arent normal people going to wonder what on Earth the U refers to?
I would love a sequel to Bully. Was one of my favourite games on the PlayStation 2. Not sure it sold well enough to justify it though. Still hoping its one of the games Rockstar are working on though.
This weeks Hot Topic
As the first Hot Topic of the year the subject for this weekends Inbox is obvious: what new games are you most looking forward to in 2019?
You can find a list of all the most prominent titles here, but feel free to suggest anything else that is confirmed for this year – but please dont use games that are either unannounced or have only vague release dates (so no Half-Life 3 or Bayonetta 3).
Why are you looking forward to the games so much and how well do you expect them to do in terms of sales and reviews? What do you think of this years line-up in general, in comparison to 2018 and other recent years?
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The small print
New Inbox updates appear twice daily, every weekday morning and afternoon. Readers letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.
You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word 4Player viewer features at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.