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Red Dead Redemption II - shooting down hopes of a spring release

Red Dead Redemption II – would you take a day off work to play it?

The evening Inbox thinks Sony might be planning a PlayStation Classic 2, as one reader denies single-player games are getting any rarer.

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Gaming holiday

So the new Red Dead Redemption II trailer looked amazing, as always, but then Ive had it pre-ordered for weeks now and I need no extra persuading. What Ive also done though is taken a long weekend off from the 26th to the 29th to play it. Am I the only one that does that?

I guess taking a sickie to play a new game is a fairly common thing but I cant afford to do that as my bosses knows how big a gamer I am and Ive been going on a lot about Red Dead Redemption II (which now I think of it was maybe not a good idea).

I know Im essentially take a holiday to play a game, but is that really so bad? I think if we accept that games are worth spending our time with then theyre worth something like this for an exceptional game. I mean, isnt it the equivalent of going on a surfing holiday or something? It might not sound as cool but I doubt itll regret it.

Natural decline

FIFA 19s physical sales were 25% down on the previous year? This, more than ever, has made me question what the point in having physical sales figures is when there is surely a large (larger?) volume of digital sales that offset a decline in physical copies.

Even if FIFAs sales decreased, I cant imagine them decreasing this much. Memory is pretty reasonable to buy and I think FIFA as a game that you will buy and then play all year, as opposed to a five hour indie game, the number of digital sales will be substantial. I do wonder if we will ever get these figures though, with companies choosing to be very elusive on this front.
PS: On Forza Horizon 4, isnt the PG RACER number plate a reference to Playground Games rather than Project Gotham? That was my interpretation anyway.
PPS: Shantae: Half-Genie Hero is now available via Game Pass and well worth a download if you are a subscriber and enjoy colourful Metroidvanias.

GC: Chart-Track is supposed to be providing a chart that combines both physical and digital sales starting next year. But a 25% drop in 12 months is more than just the natural migration to digital that all franchises are seeing.

So many games, so little console

Reading through all the suggestions for the classic mini PS1 at the weekend reminded just how awesome that console was. Or rather how awesome its line-up of software was. Back at the time it was just big release after big release throughout essentially the whole lifespan of the platform.

With the mini SNES, if it hadnt been for the baffling exclusion of Chrono Trigger, youd say Nintendo had done a very good job of distilling down the essence of what the SNES was about into the selection of games they chose.

With the PS1 I dont think Sony have really got a chance of picking anywhere near as definitive a selection of 20 games. There were so many great suggestions at the weekend which wont even get close to the line-up. I wondered what with the ones we know about being mostly quite early releases if some sort of update is planned, maybe off the back of a DualShock peripheral focusing on titles that only work/would work better with those controls.

For what its worth I think PaRappa The Rapper and Wipeout are the only games Id put money on definitely being included and I would say Overboard! would be my outsider pick to sneak in.

GC: We suspect some sort of sequel is planned, with a DualShock controller and maybe the PS one redesign. But we expect Sony will want to wait and see how the first one does.



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A real hoot

Whilst waiting for the release of Astro Bot, and vainly hoping that Nintendo either release a headset or collaborate with Sony and make a VR Mario game, I finally had time to play and complete the enchanting Owlboy. Otus being a mute yet possessing more charm that all the Final Fantasy XV characters combined, it made the game more than a simple Metroidvania hi-bit homage to the titles of yore.

The scene where Asio apologises to Otus and they share an embrace was as touching as the bittersweet experiences with Trico. Definitely one of the most heartfelt games of the last few years.
PS: Totally unconnected, I know, but I was wondering if GC or readers have watched the movie A Ghost Story? Definitely an experience not soon forgotten.

Phony war

I really dont get the where are all the single-player games cry, you dont even have to look hard. Below is a list of 17 games I have completed this year alone, vast majority of which are single-player and there is a mix of genres and have been played across platforms:

Wolfenstein II, The Evil Within 2, Monster Hunter: World, Rive Complete Edition, Far Cry Primal, Far Cry 5, God Of war, NieR: Automata, Dark Souls Remastered, Star Wars: Battlefront II, Bayonetta 1, Need For Speed Payback, Sniper Elite 4, Farpoint, and Hollow Knight.

Im also playing both Crash Bandicoot trilogy and Spider-Man, not to mention whats likely to the biggest game of the year is reported to have an extensive single-player campaign. I also have The Surge, Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, and Mirrors Edge in the backlog too. I dont have enough time to play all the single-player games.

GC: Publishers themselves have talked about deemphasising single-player only games, its a valid concern.

Eight pounds of games

I would just like to say thank you Microsoft for bringing back my gaming mojo I lost many, many years ago! After receiving my brand new Xbox One S, including two official joypads, and trying their 14 day Game Pass all I can say is its definitely for people like me thats been out of the gaming scene for almost 20 years.

I originally got it to play the old school styled games… games like the Street Fighter, Mega Man, and Sky Force, etc. Already Ive been on Street Fighter V Arcade Edition with both my lads (being Blanka of course) for almost three hours now.

I also have a one month free Game Pass to use with the bundle I received after the two weeks runs out. So I will definitely be spending £7.99 per month after my freebies run out. I just really cant believe the amount of choice of games you get for just £7.99. Happy Days.

Instant upgrade

To further add to the debate, I am a standard Xbox One owner who is going buy a PlayStation 4 shortly, for all the exclusives that I have missed.

I have an OK 4K TV and I am tempted with a Pro but is it really worth the extra £100? Any advice would be beneficial.

GC: If you can spare the money wed say its worth it, yes. Its only if youve got the original model that wed advise caution.



Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

Thumbs up

I jumped ship from Microsoft to Sony this gen but after picking up an Xbox One S Im really enjoying having an Xbox again.

Really like the build quality. Its an attractive design and is whisper quiet. I often read that the Xbox One X sets a new standard for console build quality and sophistication. I can believe it when its baby brother feels a touch more premium than Sonys PlayStation 4 Pro.

Microsoft invested large sums in to their network infrastructure and it really show with download speeds. My PS4 Pro and Xbox One S are at opposite ends of the same room, a floor above my router. Ive an 80 m/bit connection, fastest downloads I get on the Pro is 4mb a second. Downloading the Halos at the weekend the average on the Xbox One S was 30mb a second. Which Im grateful for as the combined total of Halo: The Master Chief Collection and Halo 5 was 170GB.

The controller is great. DualShock 4 is also excellent, but its analogue sticks are ill-suited to online shooters which I enjoy but have abandoned on PlayStation 4. They are oversized with large dead zones that make them feel a touch unresponsive. The placement of them is my biggest issue meaning that when you have the stick at its furthest points less than half my thumb is in contact with the stick, requiring large adjustments involving resetting my thumb.

Its not the case with the Xbox controller. The sticks feel tighter and at all times the majority of my thumb is in contact with the top of the stick giving much better control.

Backwards compatibility and Game Pass are great. To be honest, if it wasnt for the Microsoft exclusives I dont think Game Pass would be worth the money. With them included though its a great selection of some of the best games on the system coupled with a nice selection of older titles. Theres not actually many current non-Microsoft exclusive Xbox One titles on it though.

None of these things would make me choose the Xbox One over the PlayStations superior exclusives and VR option. Theres Xbox style pads for PlayStation and I can dangle my 20 metre Ethernet cable down the stairs for faster download speeds. The on-occasion quite noisy PS4 Pro can be cancelled out with headphones. Im impressed with the Xbox One S though, Its a lovely console. Halo is still fantastic too.
Simundo Jones

Inbox also-rans

One PlayStation 1 game I think people have forgotten about, and is quite rare, is Little Big Adventure which had an improved save feature over the PC version. Hopefully PC exclusive LBA2 gets remastered at some point too.

Your Torn review this morning, reading it I swore I had already played this game, turns out I was thinking of Quantum Conundrum… basic premise sounds the same though.

GC: Yes, it does a bit. But theres no fluffy dimension in Torn.

This weeks Hot Topic

The subject for this weekends Inbox was suggested by reader Gannet, who asks what generally disliked game do you think is actually good?

The game can be a commercial flop, have poor reviews, or just be something that nobody else you know likes. But why do you enjoy it? Do you think the complaints against it are unfair or do you acknowledge them but still think its fun anyway?

How often do you find yourself disagreeing with the majority opinion on a game and does it worry you when you seem to be out of step with the consensus?

E-mail your comments to: [email protected]


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