In just a couple weeks we will be introduced to the first real open-world game on next-gen consoles – Watch Dogs.
After a delay that was most likely due to the overwhelming popularity of Grand Theft Auto V and the fact that Ubisoft also had the release of Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag to deal with as well. Regardless of the reasons for delay, Watch Dogs is a combination of the two games.
The open world of Chicago is combined with many similar mechanics from Assassin’s Creed in the combat/parkour animations. While you aren’t necessarily jumping from rooftops into wagons full of straw/hay ( I never understood the realism of that). You will be able to hack into the numerous forms of electronic surveillance and other devices in order to accomplish your mission (or side mission).
The easiest comparison to Watch Dogs’ multiplayer (which is also a seamless experience – more on that soon) can be found in Assassin’s Creed 3’s multiplayer where numerous players try to disguise themselves as NPCs (Non-Playable Characters) and move in for the kill on you or any other assassin. In the case of Watch Dogs, you will see that players from all over can join your single-player game and start tracking you down and try to hack your device as well – all while trying to act like ‘some other character’ roaming around the world.
The general idea of this game is intriguing and it is coming at a perfect time for next-gen gamers that might be wondering where the hell their good games are these days. Fear not, Watch Dogs is almost here – and it looks like a winner.
Now that we are only hours from the release of 360/XB1/PC exclusive Titanfall there are many in the gaming community that may be seeing this as the first launch of a next-Gen console missile strike of sorts. Titanfall is developed by the former founders of Call of Duty’s Infinity Ward. While this might already drive many to consider this game as some sort of ‘sci-fi/mech COD’ doesn’t seem to veer from that as it is only for online multi-player action.
Titanfall is also coming out on XBox 360 as well as the newer XBox One. This might be one of the more frustrating aspects for gamers that noticed a drastic drop in quality of development of games like Battlefield 4 when comparing console performance. Titanfall has amazed many eager gamers with videos and other announcements that make this game something new in the shooter market. It isn’t as if there has been a shortage of shooter games over the last eight years of 360/PS3. Some have been stellar (COD, Halo, Battlefield and Gears of War). Others have fallen flat (MAG, Frontlines, Unreal Tournament and the list goes on).
Now, on the eve of the first real battle of the next-gen console war we are getting ready to see if Titanfall will be a dramatic success or a colossal failure.
On the XBox 360 and PS3 there was the constant bombardment of exclusive titles like Gears of War, Halo and Forza versus Killzone, Resistance, Gran Turismo and for some sports gamers – MLB: The Show. Now that the next generation of consoles have finally started to become more common in households around the world it is interesting to see that the focus has shifted away from the exclusive titles and more towards the features of the systems themselves.
Sure, there are games that XBox One and PS4 have exclusive agreements and rights for, but they aren’t exactly the same type of focus that we saw last generation. While there are some gamers out there that will have certain games that they simply must have like the Halo or Killzone titles for each respective console… that time is changing.
One of the most obvious changes can be seen in the Metal Gear franchise. Metal Gear has always been a Hideo Kojima/Konami production. In saying that – it has also almost always been seen as a Sony Playstation title as well. Now that they have announced Metal Gear Solid 5 is going to be multi-platform it seems that they are starting to realize that more console availability also means more sales overall. This isn’t always a blessing as other content within the game will be exclusive to each console. This is more annoying than anything as it drives many gamers to wonder why they bother spending more and more money on microtransactions.
With multi-platform releases like Call of Duty, Battlefield, Madden NFL and other titles that prefer mass marketing based on volume of sales rather than simply having an agreement with a certain company to release on a specific console. The one caveat to this is when companies like EA and Activision make agreements (like they did with Microsoft) to release certain downloadable content (DLC) on one console before other another. This is a practice that is rather insulting to users that buy a game like Battlefield 4 on PS3/4, XBox 360 and especially PC as well as purchasing the $50 ‘Premium’service. Primarily because they are being cheated out of content that is obviously available for XBox One users far earlier than anyone else that have purchased the same service for a different platform.
As we enter into a new era of gaming and an eventual move into a focus on digital content, it will be interesting to see how long exclusivity really plays a role in corporate gaming decision making. As it stands, there are a lot of gamers that are sick of feeling cheated out of their money when it comes to ‘exclusive’ titles and other DLC not being available for whatever reason.