Our Week in Games – Week 138
Resident Evil Village had finally dropped, to mostly good reviews. The more action-centric affair is building upon its excellent predecessor, to the apparent consternation of a group of ‘core’ fans; though I think the move is smart. Having only played the demo I can only talk to this point so much, but the balance seems good. The atmosphere is electric and I’m constantly thinking ‘danger danger’. Bonus points for anyone who got that reference.
I will say though that the boxart for Village drives me mad- why the Dickins did they not align the lycan’s chin with his???! Gah. Board decisions be damned- someone needed to take a stand on this one. 1/10, completely unplayable.
In other gaming news, Hardspace: Shipbreaker has had it’s biggest update to, erm, date. Adding a whole host of quality of life adjustments and a crew (gadzooks!) to flesh out the story. This is one of those games that I know I will love. I know I should play, yet for some reason I have not, despite Nick’s Verdict from last year. Following this update I plan to rectify that.
Finally any hope of getting hold of an ever-elusive 30-series GeForce’s card was dashed last-month when nVidia announced that supply-disruption is likely to last until 2022. The fact that AMD haven’t been able to exploit this ‘lag’ speaks to a wider supply problem that I’m afraid probably extends past COIVD-related disruption. Personally I’m convinced that the PlayStation 5 and the 30-series are the adult-equivalent of the Tooth Fairy; you’re told they exist… but have you actually met anyone who’s got one…? Didn’t think so….
Project Zomboid and I have been spending some time together. It’s an incredibly deep game that’s very easy to bounce off. The start of the game is ridiculously hard for example; though that is kind of the point. Once you’ve devised a number of strategies to get past the ‘oh my, there’s actual zombies’ point, the game opens up. Find a vehicle for example (with a key and fuel) and you’re in a great position. You think ‘you know what, i’ve cracked this’ and you get cocky. Then you Die.
It’s taken me SO long to get past this point. It’s not that I’m more careful; if anything I’m more decisive, but I DO pick my battles. I’ve learnt that a more aggressive approach at the start, when the penalty for death is less severs (i.e. you’ve not lost that much time) pays out 2/3 times. The issue is when you’re in the second phase when you’re trying to actually survive. I cannot (or would rather not) count the times I’ve found myself in a good position- I’ve found a good base of operations, I’ve got supplies, but then I’ve realise I need a specific tool to prosper. That then means going into a town. And as of yet, I’ve never then made it back out. It’s forcing me to constantly evolve my approach. My strategies, and I’m still dying. And yet, I love it more and more.
Seems the Zombie apocalypse may be harder than we think…. but that’s ok.
While Jon’s been spending his time getting to grips with Indie Stone’s apocalyptic sim, I’ve been busily poking around under the hood and seeing what makes it tick. After several hours of Youtube tutorials and helpful conversations via Discord I’ve finally got to the position where I’ve started knocking together a basic map based on a fictional town in the UK, where the cramped neighbourhoods and small houses prove an interesting contrast to the open spaces of Project Zomboid’s American setting.
It’s been an interesting challenge and not just on the technical side. Figuring out how to make maps is one thing, but figuring out what to put in them is quite another. My evening dog-walks now consist of idly staring at shop buildings wondering what their back rooms are like, and what’s to be found upstairs. Project Zomboid doesn’t cheat with its architecture, so every single building can be wandered around at leisure, meaning I’m committing myself to a great deal of lightswitch-placing and endless wallpaper selections.
As with most of my modding experiments, the inevitable soon happened and a familiar shape found its way into the game files. What will I use it for? I have no idea, but the important thing is that it’s there for me when I need it…
I was all prepared to start my weekend by playing Village, then I read the reviews and realised that this is a direct sequel to 7. So I jumped onto the PlayStation 5 store and bought a copy of Ethan Winters’ first adventure. While that downloaded I got back into Control and took to the Ashtray Maze, in what was a phenomenal sequence in a game which continues to surprise and entertain me. The song which accompanies this sequence is electric, perfectly matched to the action and makes for a real moment.
If you want some other weekend reading, there’s piece on GI.biz analysing some of the recent news from Epic vs Apple lawsuit, this time analysing some of the latest revelations surrounding Sony and how they approach cross-play. It’s well worth a read.