After months and months of speculation about the future of Twitch.tv, news broke late yesterday that Amazon would be the one signing the $1.1 billion check to acquire the wildly popular video game streaming service. This morning, I rushed to the Morning AMp Newschopper 7 to deliver this piping-hot tech news to hosts Molly and Brian. Afterwards, we touched on some local Chicago politics involving Uber/Lyft, then rounded things out with a review of Diablo III Ultimate Evil Edition. You can listen to the entire segment using the player above. Thanks for listening!
Diablo III has had an interesting life. From the art style outcry of 2008 and Error 37 to a new game director and expansion pack, we’ve seen the game transform from something hardcore fans used as the butt of jokes into something that’s actually pretty damn fun. With Diablo III Ultimate Evil Edition hitting both current-gen and last-gen consoles today, does this dungeon crawler have what it takes to bring old-school RPG action into the living room? Yes. 100% yes. See for yourself in the video above!
The Last of Us was my 2013 Game of the Year. It was (and continues to be) a bastion of what interactive storytelling in video games can achieve. Last week, Sony and Naughty Dog re-released this masterpiece on the Playstation 4 as The Last of Us Remastered — an update of the original game featuring improved visuals and additional DLC/behind-the-scenes content. It’s a smart way to preserve a modern classic, and they’re not the only ones doing the “remake our game with better visuals” thing this year. 2014 will see the remastering of Halo 1-4, Grand Theft Auto V, Sleeping Dogs, The Walking Dead, Metro 2033 & Metro: Last Light, and Tomb Raider, with even more rumored.
This has led many players to cry foul. “I’ve already played these games! Where are the new ones? Where are the new ideas? I didn’t buy new consoles just to play old games!” I get it. It’s frustrating that there are not a ton of games out on PS4 and Xbox One right now, but these remasterings are paving the way for those new games you want. They’re giving developers a chance to cut their teeth on this new hardware so that the first new game they do make is as good as it can be. They’re also giving studios safe-bet projects to ensure their doors stay open long enough to ship that new IP you’re dying for.
When taking factors like these into consideration, I think it’s a bit easier to understand why so many games are getting the next-gen treatment. Besides, it’s not like these are bad games. No one is remastering Aliens: Colonial Marines or anything. And if you’re serious about looking for new ideas? Break out of your genre comfort zone. The amount of gameplay diversity available to players has never been higher and all it takes is peeking above the walled-garden of your preconceived notions to find all those new ideas you’re craving.
With both Molly and Brian back in The Morning AMp studios this week, it’s time to play catch-up on some of the big tech and video game news that happened while they were out. On yesterday’s show, we covered some of the big shakeups happening at Microsoft, the outcome of The International 4 (along with ESPN’s coverage of the Dota 2 tournament), and some of the new games I’ve been playing including the Destiny beta and OlliOlli. You can listen to the whole segment by clicking on the embedded player above.
When Bungie says they are working on something revolutionary, you listen. When they offer up an open beta a month before launch so you can kick the tires, you say “Why not?” I’ll admit that it took me a couple hours of playing to really get a feel for what Bungie is trying to do, but it looks like they might pull off something really special with Destiny. Thanks for watching!
I first heard of Shovel Knight during its very successful Kickstarter, but decided not to contribute. “Oh jeez, another indie platformer that uses pixel art graphics and a chiptune soundtrack,” I thought. Nope — wrong! The developers at Yacht Club Games have approached this project with a level reverence for classic NES games and a smart mixture of classic tropes and modern design that turns “another indie platformer” into something really special. Thanks for watching!
Alright, so this whole “stream my entire playthrough of Dark Souls II” thing totally bombed. This week, the gods of video capture looked down upon me and laughed as I tried to demonstrate how to properly defeat the Looking Glass Knight — in the end, it actually just turned into a quick rundown of what I saw of Bloodborne at E3 2014. This is the end of my Dark Souls II videos, but will I return to take on the first Dark Souls?! Only time will tell. As always, thanks for watching!