Category: Sony

Relive the PlayStation Lifestyle of 2008 with this Blu-ray

Want to remind yourself of how Sony was selling the PlayStation 3 lifestyle in 2008? In the mood for some old game trailers you may have forgotten about? Do you love Blu-ray movies? There’s something for everyone on this 2008 “Welcome to PlayStation 3” promo disc that I picked up at a flea market back in April.

It’s a little odd that it was produced on a Blu-ray and you’d need a Blu-ray player (one of the PS3’s biggest selling points back in ‘08) in order to watch it. Nevertheless, there’s some choice marketing tomfoolery in Part 1. Lots of happy gamer dudes dancing around while playing, mimicking Minority Report hand gestures to navigate the XMB interface that never, ever worked that way. The PSP segment is also great, projecting gameplay footage on billboards and the sides of buildings when you were actually staring down at a tiny screen and ignoring the world. There’s even a “Karen” moment akin to the Nintendo Switch reveal trailer where a guy hands his PSP to a DJ at a party to really bring the heat with his Sony Music-approved playlist.

I know I’m way behind the curve on video resolution with 4K steamrolling its way into homes but this is also one of my first 1080p recordings. Oh yeah, it’s presented in 4 parts because I fully expect copyright claims to come down hard on these movie trailers and Sony BMG tracks. So far it hasn’t been blocked worldwide like my Guitar Hero Live video.

Earth Defense Force 5 Announced for 2017 at TGS

D3 Publisher and Sandlot announced a new Earth Defense Force title overnight at the Tokyo Game Show. The appropriately titled Earth Defense Force 5 is coming first to PlayStation 4 in Japan in 2017. No Western release has been confirmed but as the series’ fanbase continues to grow in North America and Europe it’ll most likely happen at some point. For now: rampant speculation.

Giant bipedal frog creatures carrying guns! This is by far the most over the top thing I’ve seen in the series. At least one fan has already suggested these could be the as-yet-unseen Ravagers, the alien race behind the incessant attacks on Earth throughout the series. At one point we see one of them leap out of the way of incoming fire and another give a hand signal command, presumably to nearby insects.

New UFO types. The little saucer ships remind me of their counterpart in EDF2: Invaders from Planet Space hinting at more inspirations from the series’ older entries. There are also slightly reworked (and golden colored) dropships that rain down streams of giant insects and a glimpse of a gargantuan, blade-wielding mother ship.

A new monster spawner. At the 1:00 mark in the video we see giant spikes rain down in front of the EDF forces that start teleporting in a stream of ants.

A new map location. A few quick clips show a new metallic indoor environment. In one shot a group of EDF Rangers are running up a dimly lit ramp towards the battle raging outside. In another the fight takes place in the dark interior with red lighting and muzzle flashes illuminating the action.

Physics! Up to this point EDF has relied heavily on the design theory of “just add more explosions” when it comes to damaged vehicles and alien craft. But there are a few glimpses in the trailer of devastated tanks flipping over, mechs falling to pieces, giant alien debris collapsing to the ground and even an ant headshot with exploding skull!

Rain and splatter. It’s a very simple looking effect but there are a few shots of action with sheets of rain falling down the screen. There are also 2 really quick cuts with red and orange insect blood splattered on the ground and environment. We see a lot of this arterial spray when shooting the bugs but this is the first I can remember where it’s appeared on the environment.

Sandlot has made tiny, iterative improvements on the series since it began so it’s not a surprise that I’m calling out blood splatter as a hot new feature. I was a little dismayed at how similar the game looks but there are a lot of surprises hidden in the quick cuts of this trailer. I hope it’s hinting at even more changes and surprises that only we dedicated fans can truly appreciate.

Good Karma, Bad Game: The Music of Super Bombad Racing

Because nobody asked — no, wait — because one person asked, here is the entire soundtrack from one of the most maligned Star Wars games in existence: Super Bombad Racing. I bought it just over a year ago to see if its soundtrack offered any fun remixes of Star Wars themes for a feature I wrote on Original Sound Version. Turns out, it doesn’t.

But I am nothing but a conduit: passing something I have (and don’t necessarily love) onto someone who wants it. I’m like a Video Game Buddhist, or at the least I’m paying it forward for my fellow gamers in search of obscure coverage.

Who’s next? What do you want to see or hear? If I’ve got it or can get ahold of it I’d love to do some more requests. Bonus points if you pick a game that happens to be on my growing backlog.

Big City Stories mixes SimCity with GTA Online

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Goof as we might, there were a lot of people out there who loved PlayStation Home, Sony’s stab at a marketing-driven virtual world on PlayStation 3. Since it was shut down on April 1st, 2015 fans have been looking for a new place to meet and play (and stand in lines and dance). Seeking to fill the void are several projects from studios who previously created content for PlayStation Home like Atom Universe and the more specialized Four Kings Casino & Slots from Digital Leisure.

The latest is Big City Stories from Hellfire Games that looks like a surprising mix of SimCity and Grand Theft Auto Online. It may be a surprise to a lot of us but fans of PlayStation Home likely remember Hellfire’s last offering, Home Tycoon. Big City Stories looks to be a total overhaul of Home Tycoon which allowed players to design and manage a metropolis while also being able to jump down to street level for arcade-y action. Stunt courses can be built and zombies can be hunted by commandeering any vehicle that’s cruising around your city streets.

Big City Stories’ major addition is a layer of MMO that lets players invite friends to their city or run into strangers at the local train station; how very Animal Crossing of them. Of course there will be loads of clothing and costumes to customize your avatar which is where the free-to-play game hopes to turn a profit. Hellfire Games is already planning expansions and improvements once the game is out on PlayStation 4, umm, tomorrow! Katy and I may do a little co-op stream once we get our feet wet but if you’ve got a PlayStation 4 there’s little to dissuade you from trying it out yourself on the 23rd. That is, as long as you’re in the continental United States: other territories will get the game after the launch-day jitters are worked out.

Oh hey, Galak-Z got The Void update on PlayStation 4 today

I turned on the PlayStation 4 this evening and caught an unexpected (although previously announced) update to the relentlessly-anime roguelike shooter, Galak-Z. I’m bummed that the final story content still isn’t available but The Void update did remind me that I 100% completed that game back in March.

With an accomplishment like that you’d think I would be a prime candidate for The Void which adds an endless, procedurally generated gauntlet of stages to throw myself against. But with nothing to unlock but a high score and no story content in sight I was quickly deflated. I played a couple of rounds to get back in sync with the demanding gamplay and fizzled out from there.

The best news is that this update brings the PlayStation 4 up to parity with the Steam version as far as content goes. With any luck at all that final “season” of content won’t be too terribly far away.