The Tuesday Inbox recommends the Bedrooms to Billions: PlayStation Revolution documentary, as another reader falls in love with A Short Hike.
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Apologies I’ve not wrote in on a while. Also, massive thanks for keeping the site going throughout the difficulties of the last few months, it’s definitely helped me get through it. I had a tough day yesterday as I had to take the decision to sell my Switch and games at my local CeX, due to finances at present. So I’ve got my PS4 Pro as my sole condole now. Then yesterday afternoon I broke my elbow. Honestly yesterday was a nightmare.
In hospital I noticed the Mario news dropping on GC, I kept the All-Stars compilation news till I got home though, as something to look forward. I genuinely thought this was going to make me regret selling my Switch more than I already was. But I was totally underwhelmed by it. I was expecting full on remakes but they’re definitely just remasters. That’s my fault for expecting too much possibly. Super Mario 64 was the last time a game totally blew me away, when I first played it on N64 I adored that game years ago.
The issue here is N64 games just haven’t aged well, they just don’t look good now. I wonder if that’s why we haven’t had a Classic Mini N64 yet, but that’s another issue. Super Mario Sunshine I always found to be pretty meh. Super Mario Galaxy 1 looked good and just hearing that music was awesome in itself. I think Nintendo would have been better doing a Galaxy 1 and 2 set. These games are works of art. And why the total silence Galaxy 2? It got given the cold shoulder.
I can understand if it was rubbish, but as GC says, it’s right up there among the best games ever created. I don’t understand that. Totally Nintendo basically. Why the weird release pattern? It makes no sense. It’s almost as if they had no plans to do this, then they scraped it all together last minute to please the fans.
They’ve put more effort into all the other stuff with the merchandising than this compilation. Had I still had my Switch I wouldn’t be bothering. Anyway, rant over! Keep up the awesome work.
Bertie1 (PSN ID)
PS: Has GC heard any rumours on when we may hear more news on PlayStation 5?
GC: It’s rumoured for this month but plans change every day so we wouldn’t count on anything.
I guess everyone was hoping for a full remake of Super Mario 64 that looked something like the Throwback Galaxy in Super Mario Galaxy 2? That would be what the game really deserves.
Maybe that’s why Super Mario Galaxy 2 has been left out… makes Super Mario 64 look bad (or even worse).
GC: But, of all the games, Super Mario Galaxy 2 needs a remake the least?
Christmas number one
It was delightful to finally see the Mario 3D pack including those top quality games, with the unfortunate omission of Super Mario Galaxy 2, but something tells me that’ll be the subject of its own remaster at some point.
However, that Mario Scalextrix, which is what to all intents and purposes it is, was a complete blindside!
Typical Nintendo, doing something totally different, just like Labo, and making the simplicity look great fun and absolutely essential.
It’ll probably be expensive, probably be Xmas number one toy, and probably be sold out. Needless to say, I wouldn’t mind a go, but my only questions are, will it require a hard floor to use it, and how long will the kart batteries last?
I would guess so, as these things never work well on carpet in the past, but I can just imagine how much fun a whole group is going to get out of this, especially if they release loads of different character karts, but in terms of batteries, maybe 30 minutes at best?
And there we all were thinking Nintendo had nothing but remasters for Xmas.
GC: It’s £100 with one remote control car.
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Never mind Super Mario it seems like Prince Of Persia is finally getting a remake, with rumours pegging it for a reveal at Ubisoft Forward this week. I hope they do a good job on it as that was one of my favourite games of the era.
Even more importantly I hope they use it as the jumping off point for future games and do what they do with some movies and pretend the other sequels never happened. I know that didn’t work out with Terminator but it did for Halloween, I thought, and I think it’s the best way to handle Prince Of Persia.
It was never as good as The Sands Of Time again and I really want to see the characters be ‘nice’ again, as well as the gameplay focusing on platforming not combat.
Anon asked on Friday why people would want to buy a console instead of a PC if there were no more console exclusives.
I’ll say why: second-hand games. Prices drop more steeply than they ever have before and it’s easy to find even fairly obscure titles on the internet.
And if you are clever about buying and reselling then it won’t even cost you anything beyond the original cost of the console and some time.
Also, you can build a collection of boxed games, which is far harder on PC.
Saturday night at the movies
Over the weekend I got the new Bedrooms to Billions PlayStation Revolution documentary on Blu-ray, as I was a backer for it on Kickstarter. We were supposed to get it earlier than this but because of COVID it delayed the manufacturing and now the physical copies have been sent out.
I saw it digitally originally and I highly recommend it. It is supposed to release from a distributor on Monday 7th September, with a different cover. The cover for the backer’s physical copy is designed by Oliver Frey.
Great Hot Topic! And for me there is an open world that is head and shoulders above any other I’ve encountered, and that is Touissant from The Witcher 3 expansion Blood And Wine.
Being transported to this glorious, sunny world of vineyards, windmills, castles, and beautiful scenery was just incredible, especially when so much of the rest of the world in Witcher is grey and foreboding.
I never used fast travel in Touissant, as I was always happy to ride everywhere.
I took so many photos of sunsets! And once I discovered Nvidia Ansell, meaning you could move the camera wherever you wanted, I just couldn’t stop with the photos!
So, one very specific area of The Witcher 3 world for me. But as a pretty good second… Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag.
The Dude Abides
Many thanks for the extra Sega Astro City Mini coverage, confirming the full line-up of games. There’s certainly enough games I’ve enjoyed in arcades in decades gone by! To justify a purchase… if anyone, yourselves included, could point me in the direction of a complete beginners guide to ordering this from Japan that would be great!
I briefly went to Amazon Japan but, despite blundering around for some time, could get it in English only for some parts! That being said do you know anyone in Sega you could petition on my behalf, and I’m sure many others, for a release outside of Japan!
Thanks again for the great gaming coverage.
GC: Thank you. Your best bet probably is Amazon Japan, as Play-Asia already seems to be sold out. How much is translated may vary according to what browser you’re using but we’ve ordered from it before by just comparing where the buttons are on the UK site, because they’re all the same.
Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here
Short but sweet
Got to heap praise on A Short Hike, hadn’t really heard of it until recently. For the price of not much more than a pint, I got an immersive four-hour game that rewarded exploration where, as cliched as it sounds, the journey was the game.
Yeah you complete it in less than two hours in a single sitting, but I purposely took my time and wanted to explore everything before the finish (although there’s nothing stopping you exploring post-game). It’s the charm and atmosphere that shines through, the quirky little characters that you come across along the way and just the general ambiance makes it a winner.
I’m glad that there’s space for multiple price-points and game lengths in the current gaming market, and titles like this deserve all the praise and success they get. I enjoy a blockbuster title as much as the next gamer but find that mixing up with different genres and experiences really adds to my overall appreciation of the media, and can mitigate against general gaming malaise, something that I’ve experienced in the past.
It’s so good, that out of the games I’ve played, I’d put it up there with Inside, Untitled Goose Game, and Lonely Mountains: Downhill as the best indie games of this generation.
TheTruthSoul (PSN ID)
Was sorry to hear at the weekend about the reader who has lost their enthusiasm for gaming. I think this happens to everyone from time to time, and I always think the advice from GC about trying something different to what you might normally play is definitely the way to go. It always works for me!
ameisa (PSN ID)
Excellent Reader’s Feature about the Super Mario 3D All-Stars collection at the weekend. Must be the laziest thing Nintendo has ever done. It shames the All-Stars name too, that compilation remade all the games and added in one we’d never seen before. This time it takes out one we have seen!
This week’s Hot Topic
The topic for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Garrison, who asks what is your favourite combat system in a video game?
It can be from any kind of game you like, from a first person shooter to a fighting game or role-player but which one do you think had the best battles and what made them so good? Was it how the weapons felt to use, if it was an action game, or the depth of option in terms of moves and abilities?
How much did the graphics and sound play a part and what about storytelling? Was it a game where all the different elements were good or just the combat, and how much did that affect the overall experience?
E-mail your comments to: [email protected]
The small print
New Inbox updates appear every weekday morning, with special Hot Topic Inboxes at the weekend. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.
You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word Reader’s Feature at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.
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