Games Inbox: Was this generation of consoles rushed?
Was this generation rushed out before it was ready?

The evening Inbox is convinced the NX controller leak is a fake, as one reader issues a perverse challenge for Dark Souls III.

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Time to prepare

So, both Sony and Microsoft are now working on upgraded PlayStation 4 and Xbox One? Is it just me or was the hardware maybe not really ready for this current gen of consoles?

Readers on GC have mentioned in letters here for a while about how the graphical leap is not that great this time around, where historically there has been quite large leaps in graphics and performance from PlayStation 1 to PlayStation 2 to PlayStation 3. Now we get announcements about upgradable Xbox Ones and the PS4.5 (PS4K if you prefer) which does make you think that maybe the machines weren’t really ready or as powerful as they should have been at launch.

I imagine Nintendo may be breathing a sigh of relief as a new console for them this year or next now doesn’t seem like quite so much of a risk, now that these announcements have been made.

Does anybody know yet where this would leave existing PlayStation 4 owners? Will original models be upgradable or will we need to buy a whole new console to reap the benefits of the upgrades? The next few months should be interesting.
Richard Hyde

GC: Bear in mind these are still only rumours. Neither company has confirmed anything as yet. That said you’re probably not wrong, and the generation always seemed rush even before this new twist. Which is crazy as the last generation was the longest there’s ever been.

Just say no

I dropped you a line the other day with comments on the XboxOnePointFive and the same stands for the PS4.5… just no!

I’m comforted by the fact that when I buy a console, I know that I don’t have to worry about upgrading for many years and I’m also comforted that no-one else has a better PlayStation 4 or Xbox One (performance-wise) than I have.

Fair enough, the current gen hasn’t been the leap forward, graphically, that many had hoped, but splitting the generation is not the answer. Let the devs eek the most out of the current gen hardware and let the manufacturers concentrate on making sure the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Two(?) kick ass! Incremental console upgrades have never worked.

Sliding scale

Upon reading your article regarding the trade in for digital titles on the Xbox store, I thought that 10% was a bit of a slap in the face to the person who purchased a game at RRP.

I know that Steam offers a full refund option now if you’re not happy with the product due to bugs and glitches, making a game unplayable. But I had a further thought about what could be done.
I think that Microsoft should adopt a policy like with retail purchase on the digital store, whereas you can return a game within seven days for a full refund. After that initial seven days, the price should go down based on the length of time you have owned the game.

10% would be a good amount if you’ve owned the game for over a year but maybe the first three months, it should be 50% of the RRP and should be tracked based on the price paid for the game. Just a thought but I’m sure many Xbox owners will have an opinion on this one.
Tendo_Pete (PSN ID)/Tendo14288 (NN ID)

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Taste of Paris

I had £11 odd left in my Microsoft Account after buying Quantum Break so thought I would take a punt on the new Hitman Intro Pack. I’ve never been a Hitman fan though and have only ever actually played Absolution and did enjoy it. I’m really quite enjoying the new game, it is really cool the amount of things you can do to kill your target creatively and the levels are huge. And I like that the game doesn’t tell you where things are, you have to explore the whole area to find different disguises and instruments of death.

I enjoyed the two free missions on the Paris map that they’ve just released, with one having you dress up as a vampire magician which was very funny. I had to find a pass to get upstairs but then had to hide my gun in a bin as one of the guards wanted to frisk me, saucy devil that he is! So I went up gun-less, found the vampire outfit, but had to lure one of the guards into a room on his own and knocked him out and nicked his rifle.

It was pretty funny gunning down the target and a few of his henchman with a vampire outfit on and silly sunglasses! I’m looking forward to the next expansion in Italy now. I must say, if this was a normal full price game I would have been reluctant to buy it but since it was only £11.59 for the first pack it was the right price for me to want to take a punt and I’m glad I did so the episodic release model definitely works for attracting new fans to the series though I now want to play the full game so am a bit disappointed I have to wait for each instalment to come out separately.

Long-time fans must be a bit frustrated too I’d imagine, though I suppose it wouldn’t sell very well as a traditional full-priced release. Whereas as a cheaper download released in chunks is more attractive to non-fans like myself I suppose.
Big Angry Dad82 (gamertag)/FuriousGeorge05 (PSN ID)/BigAngryDad (NN ID)

Sheer poetry

I made it to the Nuclear Throne at the weekend.
I saw it, but it killed me with a giant radiation gun.
I’ve not made it back yet, but I will get back!
Such a good game.
The Super Splinter Gun with homing bolts, OMG these Chocodiles.
Matt Kirk

Forgive and forget

I understand why some have objected to the dancing girls at the Game Developers Conference. My information is obviously out of date but I remember reading about this event years ago and back then it seemed to be a series of talks and seminars on topics such as gaming as an art form.

I never imagined it as an E3 type show (or a strip club) but it seems to have changed over the years. What made me angry is not the dancers but Microsoft’s response to them. Although these girls were employed by Microsoft at a party they organised at an event they attended the travesty here is their determination to address this issue earnestly and quickly while their other outrages aren’t even acknowledged.

This is the company that released a games console with an astronomical fail rate; a company which was ready to release an always online machine that wouldn’t let you trade-in your used games; a company which allows scurrilous third parties to milk money out of gamers and young gamers’ parents by using season passes and day one DLC. Even on the issue at hand, women’s equality, it has done nothing to increase the number of female protagonists and positive female role models in games.

How sickening then to see them act so swiftly in this matter to preserve their reputation. This is proof if it were needed that Microsoft is all about presentation and spin but with no interest in backing up its hollow words with genuine action.

GC: Some of those issues, like the Xbox 360 launch, are a decade old at this point. We’re not sure what that’s got to do with anything. And Microsoft’s approach to DLC is no different than Sony’s. But Microsoft is not a hive mind and it’s pretty obvious that Phil Spencer (or any sane person) knew that having girls dressed as strippers just hours after hosting a talk on encouraging women into the industry, was not a good idea.

Hopefully fake

Just to clear up any confusion, the leaked NX controller is in fact fake, the generic cave design in shot has been identified and belongs to an already existing title.

Also, looking closely you may notice a transparent E.T. head, almost like a reflection on the screen, An image of E.T., usually well-hidden is in certain circles the equivalent to a hoaxer’s calling card.
The leaked image is a fake.
Bad Edit (gamertag)/Bitdead (NN ID)

GC: The cave graphics are from an Unreal Engine 4 demo, which is just the sort of thing you might expect someone to test on a new console. We’ve no idea about the E.T. head business, but either way we always assumed – or at least hoped – it was a fake.

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

No help

Today I would like to challenge anyone who claims they are good at one or more of the Souls games, including Bloodborne. Having a platinum Trophy apparently makes you one by default so read on. With Dark Souls III to be released very soon in Japan, it needs saying now.

The challenge is simple, play and finish Dark Souls III on your own. Before you scoff and say ‘easy’ you must be able to follow the rules set out below. Until you see the credits roll at the end.

First no wiki page help, buying guides, or YouTube. Or any equivalent. When I said on your own I meant this. Asking other people for tips counts the same.

You must pick the Deprived class. If it’s not named that, pick the class which has the least armour, weapons, and skills.

No gift.

Until you finish the game, you may only have one character saved.

No summoning co-op help.

You may only help others who do summon five times maximum per boss. That’s max kills of said boss. If you die three times after being summoned, you must give up and move on.

You must keep all your stats the same as you level up. If your strength is 10 then your stamina will be too. They must also be raised in slight order, faith first, then vitality. The rest you can pick to suit. If there is no faith stat, pick the magic equivalent. Faith being the first because it’s my little joke. If you don’t have any faith in yourself, you’ll never do this.

The last part is the true test for you. You’re going to play what I call death press-ups. Basically it means that when you die (in game of course, you silly goose) you get off your backside and do 10 press-ups. It doesn’t matter how or why the words on the screen say You Died because you died. If you invade and lose, it’s your fault. Dashing to grab items in a suicide run still counts.

What doesn’t count are game breaking glitches and bosses. Boss fights are special and will be treated as such. If you let the boss kill you (he he) it’s twenty press-ups. If you cannot physically do press-ups, please try something else, anything to make your body move during the loading screen.

I dare say there won’t be any takers of my challenge. A lot of people have become too used to the crutch that is the Internet. The others that will tell you this is impossible are those that can only play Souls games as a hack and slash. Putting all in strength stamina and hit points with no concept of tactics. If you are a player as described in this paragraph please don’t bother trying this. You will fail.

No, I’m not trying reverse psychology. I genuinely believe you can’t do it. And no it’s not a bluff to goad you. If you think you can’t do it, then you won’t. Simple. If any of you try this and give up then please write in and say why.

I’m sure by now you’re saying something along the lines of ‘you couldn’t do it either’, etc. Yes? Not including the stat limits and joining others restriction, this is how I played Dark Souls II and Bloodborne. I know it’s possible. And crazy. Your arms will tell you how good you are at Dark Souls.
Dan Wolfshead

GC: We don’t see what press-up have to do with not using wikis.

Inbox also-rans

I definitely prefer psychical media as I can sell it once I beat the game in a month or so for £5-£10 less then what I paid. I can’t do that with digital copies and a 10% buyback policy won’t change this Microsoft.

Got a couple of Steam keys to give to whoever asks first. Final Fantasy VIII and Deus Ex: Director’s Cut. Whoever gets Final Fantasy VIII make sure to download the Roses and Wine mod to fix the awful MIDI music files that the default game has.
weejock mcplop

GC: That’s very generous of you, thanks very much.

This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Tim Powers, who asks what older video game you’d most like to see get a current gen remaster.

Remasters have become commonplace in the last few years, but there are still plenty of games that have never got their chance. So what older game would you like to see brought back with more modern graphics and features?

If it’s a game older than the PlayStation 2 era it’d probably need a full remake, so how would you handle that? Are you generally in favour of remasters and which has been your favourite and least favourite so far? Please remember it’s the Easter Bank Holiday this weekend, so we need as many Hot Topic entries in as soon as possible.

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