For Honor

The For Honor Beta is out and Sid’s been trying to play as much as he can with a migraine the size of his library. There’s been no video that does the game justice. It’s combat mechanics are well and finely tuned a very skill based competitive mode. Sid describes a number of duels where he’s fended off enemies out of sheer luck before being slaughtered. However the intensity and visceral nature of the fight make it such an incredibly engrossing game.

It also seems that Ubisoft have found their feet when it comes to releases. With a number of Beta’s being used to showcase the game and allowing players to try it. They’re also keeping the same progression and customisation options they introduced with Rainbow Six Seige.

Our only concern is if the player numbers will grow or become stagnant after a point. When playing in the Open Beta, if you haven’t devoted as much time as some of the people you’re playing against, you’ll find yourself outmatched and underpowered. It’s worth noting that a new player joining will probably find themselves in difficulty trying to play against anyone who’s mastered any of the heroes.

It’s clear that the game has been designed with longevity in mind. Ubisoft are showcasing their best here. It’s a beautiful game which is very well optimised at present. The controls are tight and the gameplay is challenging.

Sid is very tempted to pick it up and break his “Buy No More Games” ruling.

Steam

In a recent sit down with PC Gamer, the team at Valve discussed a number of things that they have planned. They’re currently working on 3 VR games that they’ll be releasing. We’re not particularly optimistic because, well, we don’t really believe it. After the Zenimax-Oculus situation, it’s hard to see a bright future for VR outside of the mobile space. However, if Valve are going to release some quality first-party games for the Vive, this could be an interesting move by them. You also have to consider that Valve aren’t exactly known for bringing out a product on time though.

Steam Greenlight is soon to be gone. Replacing it will be Steam Direct which will involve developers being a lot more professional. Their aim is to combat the popularity contest scam that Greenlight became and having developers pay a recoupable fee. This will close the gates to developers who are trying to minimise “development costs” by asset flipping and trying to sell shit games. It’s an interesting take, but may hurt indie developers with no budget.

Steam is also bringing back paid mods in some capacity, so there’s something to laugh about.

In this episode of I’m Just Playin’ we take on the difficult topic of Steam Support and it’s utter abysmal system.

As always, we begin our episode with the games that we’re playing this week. After a long time of waiting, Sid’s anticipation for the newly released Urban Empire became a massive disappointment. It’s themes, ideas, mechanics and fidelity are great. However, when all combined, it is an extremely dull and unrewarding experience where you’re sitting around waiting for things to happen.

We’d love to get your feedback on the show. If you have a few minutes to give us your thoughts, we’d really appreciate it.

Take Survery

Joe’s been playing Broforce whilst he’s been ill. Easily one of the best platformers in recent history. Taking the best parts of nostalgia, classic platforming and then bringing it into the modern era. Excellent humour, intense gameplay and a never ending barage of explosions and ridiculousness, Broforce is one of Devolver Digital’s best.

Brian’s been continuing his ongoing challenge and actually played Alien: Isolation. A game which the other hosts absolutely refuse to play anymore. An incredible game that truly captures the spirit and ideas behind the Alien franchise. Now that Brian’s done his mandatory time with the game, he too will never return.

And then comes the bulk of the discussion. Steam is under fire, this time from ESPN and a very strange article about the CSGO gambling problem that young people have been encountering. With interviews from young players who have developed an addition to gambling on these sites. The article paints a surprisingly positive light on CSGO Lotto owners Trevor Martin and Tom Cassell. Furthermore, Valve appear to be taking most of the blame in this editorial.

Which leads us to Steam and their absymal support system. We discuss the pitfalls and the impossibility of Valve creating a system that inherently fits their culture as a company and how they operate but still provides a solid support system to the players.

In the first episode of 2017, we break down all the stats of the Steam sales as found on SteamSpy. For those that don’t know SteamSpy is a website that aggregates all the stats from Steam based on ownership and they provide a rough estimate of how well games have done on Steam. It’s not perfect as Valve doesn’t provide that kind of in detail information, however, based on the number of owners over a period of time, they’re able to gauge a rough estimate.

We start the show as per usual discussing what we’ve been playing. Joesph seems to be going through the Warner Bros. game back catalogue as he’s been digging his teeth into Shadow of Mordor. It’s a great game, that was well reviewed both critically and in sales, however it was tarnished based on WB Games shady shenanigans with their undisclosed paid sponsorship on New Media. With innovations like the Nemesis System and including the Arkham Combat mechanics, it was a great game (minus the end boss battle.)

Brian’s started a new venture with Sid, with the all new Brian’s Boss Battle. A website chronicling Brian’s attempt to get through his entire Steam catalogue. As a guy who’s bought nearly 1000 games across multiple platforms, Brian spends a lot of time not playing them. After adding 30 new additions in the Steam Sales, it was time he got through each of the games in his Steam library. Throughout 2017, he’ll be playing every game in his library for at least an hour, and writing a short review on his new blog. We’re excited to see what he thinks of some classics, some favourites, the obvious bad ones and everything else in between.

Sid’s gone off the rails and decided to give Microsoft his hard earned money and play Forza Horizon 3. As someone who doesn’t care about cars or racing games in general, he’s completely hooked at how Forza Horizon 3 just makes the entire process just fun. There’s no checklist of races to win as it’s an open world where you can drive endlessly, doing races, PR stunts and/or nothing to your hearts content. Even though the Windows Store is complete trash, props have to go to the developers and Microsoft for a game that should’ve been nominated (and even won) something at the I’m Just Playin’ Game awards.

Steam Sales Numbers

Steam Sales numbers are in, courtesy of SteamSpy and it’s very interesting. The usual suspects are there, but the biggest success is that of Stardew Valley. Eric Barone has made at least $30 million from this game, which goes to show that hard work, effort and a love for what you do, it’s possible to make it. The game is fantastic all round, and being built by a sole person, makes it even more impressive.