Wednesday 23 December 2015

What I'm Waiting For - Volume 4 [Gaming]

It's been a long time since I did one of these. Beginning of the year, in fact. And quite a bit has happened between then and now. For starters, both LEGO Jurassic World and Splatoon released - giving me quite a lot to do within each game. As well as that though, Star Wars Battlefront also released and I have also been having a blast on GTA Online.

To recap on the games covered in my last What I'm Waiting For, I loved playing through LEGO Jurassic World. While the hub wasn't the singular larger one I had hoped, it made sense within the game as the hubs played into the story. Playing and creating dinosaurs was good fun, and the humour was spot-on as usual.

Splatoon met my expectations greatly. And since launch it has only been growing since. From the start it only had a small number of weapons and maps, maximum rank of 20, and not much else. Since then, new weapons and weapon classes have been added, a lot more maps, and for those that need a reason to jump on - Splatfests. The rank cap was also increased to 50 and a new mode was added - Rainmaker. Though I've fell out of playing it for a while, I fully intend to get back to it, as the game really is a lot of fun.

Onto the latest of the games, and you'd be forgiven for wondering why yet another Frontier Developments game is here. Planet Coaster is, despite the little we've seen of it, looking to be a great experience. Frontier were behind Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 and the Thrillville series, so they have experience in this type of game. Atari seem to think they don't need Frontier to build on the RCT series, which paves the way for this stand-alone effort. A lot of concept work has been released, as well as two developer diaries, showing the game in action. From what we have seen, it seems we have full control of what we place and how it looks. Terrain controls look far improved over Rollercoaster Tycoon 3, and the technical depth in terms of rides and visitors seems to be a lot better than games that have come before.

If there is one thing I would like in the game, despite the fact it would serve nearly no purpose at all, is the ability to play within the world as a human. Thrillville had the game played from this human perspective, and as such had some character customisation, but those games were more story focused than the average simulation games. The Zoo Tycoon made by Frontier used a dual system however. The tycoon view - which was the traditional top down view, and the zoo view - that where you get down to the guests' level. Most of the features stayed the same between the two, but each view allowed unique features such as being able to interact with the animals in the zoo view. This could easily be a part of Planet Coaster, even if not everything is playable [as was the case with Thrillville].

I'm quite torn between the other game to include for this volume, as both are part of my core three franchises. Neither have yet had a new game announced, but it is quite obvious where each should be heading. The Pokémon series has followed a stable release of two main games and then a third. Black and White mixed that up with a sequel and not a director's cut [and having another two game split] but considering generation five didn't have any remakes that sort of made sense. So it does indeed seem we might be back to the director's cut, or at least a single third game.

What is also more than likely to happen is the great things we had in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire will only be half included. The biggest one obviously being flying around on the back of a Pokémon and the ability to fly anywhere. I expect the free-roam flying to be gone but we'll still be able choose any route or location to fly to. However, if I really wanted to go off on one [and I will] I'd say that both X and Y and Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire will be joined together into one mega game. There has been a massive feeling of connectivity between the main games and remakes that hasn't been present in any other generation of Pokémon, and I feel they might try and capitalise on that with an all new story that references the past events of both previous entries. And of course, feature both regions.

However, it already feels like generation six is closing, and it is the 20th anniversary for the series in 2016. Whether that means much considering past anniversaries and the lack of celebration in terms of the games themselves, we'll have to see.

Another series with an anniversary is Sonic the Hedgehog and his 25th, which definitely means something as SEGA have celebrated past anniversaries with mixed success. The latest was Generations for the 20th, and this anniversary seems even more classic focused than ever, considering all that has been said and seen so far. I'm interested in seeing whether that can be pulled off, and whether they have way-layed us. It's entirely possible they might have had two games cooking up, after all. I've covered the Sonic series back in Volume 1, so refer back to that for my ideas.

I sure don't need to cover Star Wars Battlefront here what with everything I've already posted about it [and the review], but I will say the Star Wars franchise is coming back to top form, and I hope the next game from EA can reflect this. For now, that's all from this What I'm Waiting For. Another post for a certain film will be out soon, and I have to say I enjoyed it.

What I'm Waiting For Series