I’m a couple of weeks late as some of my wishes are already starting to come true but anyways this is a list of things I want from the gaming industry this year. 2015 was great and this one has the potential to be even better.
For this not to flop. I’m not expecting huge sales figures but I want VR to do well because there is so much potential with this technology. The Playstation Experience tech demo was terrible and made me feel that maybe we have rushed this process. The Oculus price point wasn’t a good start to the year either but I remaining hopeful that VR can add a new dimension to gaming that’s not another gimmick. The benefits and long term implications, go beyond gaming and can really enrich our lives in many ways. Sony has the biggest install base and a lot of third party support so they are in the best position to be the standard if given enough time, patience and investment.
Horizon Zero Dawn to justify the hype
Probably the most anticipated PlayStation exclusive of 2016. We have seen promising gameplay trailers and interviews with the staff working on it. And based on initial impressions, this new IP can be another open world for RPG-enthusiasts to get our hands on.
Sony to actually listen to their customers
Even though the console has sold very well, there is still a long way to go. We have had our first outage of the year already from a PS Plus service that has been supplying underwhelming freebies for some time now. It would be great if the platform got a few more Rocket Leagues and Shovel Knights to make up for recent drop in quality titles. Especially as Xbox has seemed more generous with their own service recently.
Also there’s the operating system itself. PS customers have made it very clear (think #BetterPSN) what features us users actually want. We still don’t know whether the survey rumours were true but 3 years into the console’s lifecycle, there’s really no excuse.
Add-ons that are actually worth the price.
Microtransactions are here to stay and will become even more prevalent. You just have to not buy them, okay guys? And we can expect the money spinning manoeuvres to come in even more shapes and sizes. You can definitely get good, bad and ugly DLCs so try not be a sucker and research before you buy. Especially when it comes to the expensive season passes and high maintenance DLC skins.
Episodic games trend done right
Publishers are coming up with new ways to slice up their game packages in order to increase their revenues. Such as releasing Vanilla like versions only to sell the rest of the game later and now multiplayer-only games epitomising the business-driven practices of optimising their post-release sales. Now we may be on the verge of another variation in the long list of ways games are being sold to us in bits and pieces.
Episodic games are the new wave spearheaded predominantly by Tell Tales Studio and other niche developers. An interesting one but I can’t really tell whether this could work out. At the end of the day, it’s all about the price point (It’s the economy stupid!). This trend has usually been left to the small-timers but this may change with the Final Fantasy VII Remake potentially being episodic. I’ll hold back judgement but I have this feeling the economics will not weigh in favour of the consumer.
Publishers to stop yearly iterations
Ubisoft may finally be deciding to take a break from the yearly releases of Assassin Creed. Thank God. Hopefully they will also consider this after releasing Far Cry: Primal which looks like a reskinned FC4. You would think the Call of Duty franchise would follow suit but deep down we know Activision are already developing the next iteration. Black Ops 3 was a great entry and it would be shame if the franchise then produced another flop straight after. Profit will always be important but yearly sequels do not provide the quality gamers demand for full retail priced discs. Hopefully this is a step in the right direction for Ubisoft as a whole so it can rebuild its tarnished reputation. Because as we all know, good will is profitable.
The announcement of The Order 1886 sequel
Yes, it was short and deserved all the criticism it got. It’s unfair to charge people X amount for minimum content regardless of the overall quality but a lot of people enjoyed it. I have personally noticed many reddit posts from players praising it even though it was a glorified demo. When you look outside the lense of a hardcore gamer, you do realise that not everyone wants long ass games (but 20 hours wouldn’t hurt at £40 mate). Having played it myself I really love the concept and believe that there is a decent story worth pursuing.
Anyways that’s it, I’m not asking for too much. Also more free time to actually play games would be great because my backlog is becoming problematic. What would you like to see in 2016 from the games industry?