Wednesday, 20 November 2013

What's with all the bugs this year?

This might be a rant post, but I can't help but ponder about the level of polish some of this year's AAA games have launched with. This year's CoD looks and runs bad on PC, EA's Battlefield 4 is flooded with stability related bug reports, I'm stuck in the loading screen going out of the Batcave to anywhere else in Batman Origins and this year's Need for Speed (on PC, at least) is atrocious. I'm probably missing a few.

The launch of two next gen consoles has to take some of the blame as a lack of focus in development is never good. So many games this year are coming out on a lot of platforms: PC, 360, X1, PS3, PS4 and Wii U is a pretty basic and automatically assumed setting. And considering the install base of the last generation this situation could keep going for quite a bit longer. If it goes on for too long we will be stuck with smaller worlds to immerse and get lost in. But there's been a first light ray of hope in the past week of news.
A trademark for Fallout 4 was made, and we all know how great that was. I have to confess that I never finished that game, nor did I clock many hours in to it. It's on my backlog, but I know I loved what little I had played.

After having played over 15 hours of Batman: Arkham Origins I'm still on the fence. It has a slight sense of new and/or refined elements, phenomenal writing paired with a generally boring and straightforward story, slightly enhanced but very familiar visuals and the polish is everywhere and nowhere. I really wish they had simply waited until around now to start development on a new Batman game, making it next gen only. Instead it denies Arkham City being the last great game of its series on last gen while also denying itself an amazing entry to next gen.
And in that aspect I'm kind of happy that they got a more lukewarm reception from the press and gaming community because hopefully that will get the message across and get their stuff sorted out.

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