Category: Feature

It’s Free! on PlayStation Store for January 31st

It’s Free! on PlayStation Store for January 31st

It’s already the end of January, huh? Well that went fast! Commemorate the Super Blood Moon and Tide pod scandal with some random free stuff from the PlayStation Store.

Impress friends and random players you meet in Monster Hunter: World with this pack of classic gestures or keep your locks on lock with these two free hairstyles. There’s also a free SHAREfactory theme for keeping your in-game clips just as fresh as your character.

If you’d rather freshen up your Home Screen there’s also a smattering of free themes this week. SNK released a free static theme for Samurai Shodown V Special for PlayStation 4 and Vita this week, despite the game being out since last September. NIS America is also offering up a surprise-out-of-nowhere static theme on PlayStation 4 for Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of DANA.

Finally, there’s the Avatars. My.com sneaked out one more freebie this week while Archiact Interactive has a bowling pin icon on offer to tie into their recent PSVR release, Pierhead Arcade. Bringing up the rear is the sole freebie from the week of January 24th, a trio of free Navis for Gundam Versus… whatever Navi are.

For New Year Chillin’: The Four Kings Casino & Slots Soundtrack


Every year around the holidays Katy and I seem to get back into
The Four Kings Casino and Slots. It’s a great, free-to-play social game from some of the people who made content for PlayStation Home. Alongside its numerous fun diversions is a wonderfully chill soundtrack that gets stuck in our heads for weeks. I couldn’t resist it this year and set out to record the music in three acts.

Part 1 is the Title Screen jam and all the funky songs that play in the main casino, the Bingo hall, and the Blackjack and Poker rooms. Part 2 contains the handful of thumpin’ bangers that play in the game’s virtual nightclub, and Part 3 has all the music from the recently added bowling hall.

I didn’t go nuts with the videos, it’s just a simple edit of screenshots and art from the game but one day it’ll all be gone and delisted so I figured why not also memorialize it alongside the music? If you could use something to chill out with today, take a listen, it’s quite good.

It’s Free! on PlayStation Store for January 17th

It’s Free! on PlayStation Store for January 17th

Well this turned out to be a bigger week for free stuff than I expected! You can still try out the bizarre multiplayer mashup Dissidia Final Fantasy NT in “open beta test” form until January 21st but the big surprise this week has to be the Snatch VR Heist Experience. It’s a 360-degree, FMV game in VR, starring the cast of Crackle’s original series including everyone’s favorite dopey wizard Rupert Grint! Someone grab it and tell me how weird it is!

Moving on to add-on content, Warframe has another sizeable booster pack for PlayStation Plus subscribers with all the following bonuses:

  • 100 Platinum: Premium in-game currency
  • 50,000 Credits: In-game currency
  • Akmagnus: Dual-wield these revolvers for twice the ammo and twice the stopping power of a single Magnus revolver
  • Akmagnus Obsidian Skin: Exclusive PlayStation® Skin for the Akmagnus revolvers
  • 3-Day Affinity Booster: Rank up equipment at a faster rate for 3 days
  • 3-Day Credit Booster: Gather Credits faster for 3 days
  • Dragon Mod Pack: A 5-pack of mods with two guaranteed Rare to power up your Warframes

If you’ve already downloaded the game you can grab just the goodies here but if this offer has you ready to jump into the game for the first time grab the goods and the full game in one download with this link. 3on3 FreeStyle basketball is also back with its January PlayStation Plus Bonus pack offering the following:

  • 4999 Coins
  • Silver Card Pack Ticket *3
  • Coin Buff Ball (1D)

My.com, publisher of games including Armored Warfare and Skyforge has a handful of free Avatars this week from their various products if you’re looking for a new logo to represent yourself with. And finally there’s a free static theme for Aspyr Media’s new release Innerspace. It’s quite vibrant looking and reminds me a little bit of ABZU and Journey with its minimal and lonely presentation.

Katy inspired some unexpected thoughts on Tomb Raider

I recently finished Rise of the Tomb Raider which brings the reinvented Lara Croft origin story right up to where the original game kicks off. I’ve been meaning to revisit it for a while so I set off into the PlayStation original to see how it holds up, to see if I could still enjoy it, and to unpack some baggage about modern game design. But leave it to Katy to glance up and instantly cut through all the philosophical, ludo-narrative bullshit bouncing around in my mind by stating “it looks like Michael Jackson as Lara Croft in Minecraft”. It’s too perfect, especially the Minecraft part.

The blocky polygons and low-res textures of the 90’s are currently my jam. The 32-bit era of 3DO, PlayStation, and Saturn has replaced the classic 8-bit generation in my heart. I spend a lot of time looking at and thinking about those early 3D games and really never equated it to Minecraft’s look. It’s one of those cases of being so close to something and needing a little perspective which Katy unknowingly gave me. Tomb Raider is especially relatable as it’s also built on a block-based grid system. Lara’s animations all fit within the bounds of a single block and you come to use it as a measuring stick of sorts for navigating jumps and pitfalls.

From http://classictombraider.tumblr.com

Before the advent of fog (for better and worse) games simply let the limits of their worlds trail off into the black darkness. It works the same for both Tomb Raider and Minecraft to instill the sense of mystery as terrain, treasures, and terrors come rolling out of the blackness. Sure, it was a design choice for Minecraft and a technical limitation for Tomb Raider but the outcome is very much the same. Once Katy pointed it out I saw Minecraft in several of the game’s early underground jungle scenes… and yes, I also see the MJ resemblance in early Lara’s face.

I may be a decade late on this revelation but it’s been yet another angle to look at both games from. Believe me, it’s also the most positive correlation to modern game design that I’ve gathered. Video games have hardly done anything groundbreaking over the generations aside from refine their graphical fidelity, but all that is for a different post.

For today let’s just appreciate the ability of someone to make a goof and change your perspective at the same time.

It’s Free! on PlayStation Store for January 10th

It’s Free! on PlayStation Store for January 10th

Well howdy there freebie hunters, it’s been a slow couple of weeks for the PlayStation Store since Christmas. Honestly, it hasn’t picked back up yet but I thought I’d run through the latest smattering of freebies before they get any older.

What’s better than Sanic? Super Sanic! Ok, it’s just regular ol’ gold-coated Super Sonic which you can unlock for free in Sonic Forces. “Collect the right amount of rings and Super Sonic will spring into action, giving you the ability to sprint across stages at break-neck speeds.”

PQUBE has some free festive costumes for White Day: A Labyrinth Named School as well if you’re still in the holiday mood. The PSVR shooter/job simulator, Shooty Fruity, has a handful of colorful free Avatar icons and Happy Dungeons is back with another monthly offering of Happy Jewels for PlayStation Plus members.