This weeks’ episode of The Lost Spark Podcast delves into Gamescom, the Microsoft conference and the gaps left in the foreseeable future for Xbox One X.
With the 90 minute show managing to reveal almost nothing that wasn’t already known and attempting to whet our appetite’s with warmed up footage that’s been around since E3, the common feeling from ardent and expectant fans has been one of disappointment.
Over at Spark Towers, we pride ourselves on an objective positivity as we dissect the industry we love, but in this case, although we fight for it, there’s an unmistakable air of underwhelmed surprise.
The fact that the Xbox One X is the ‘Worlds Most Powerful Console’ is such an exciting prospect and the idea of this new box and it’s potential has excited and enthused the gaming community as we have walked the road of expectation together, looking forward with baited breath to this beast of a console. The power of this console looks to have met expectation and to have met the promises of the Xbox team and for that we truly are thankful and a little amazed that all the power contained in the ‘X’ is held in such a tiny shell. It really does seem a technological wonder.
The reason for the excitement though, the reason for the anticipation in the wake of the power of the hardware in the Xbox One X, is the excitement of what the box provides, what it unlocks and that is of course – the games. The promise of better, faster, more powerful consoles comes to us as a gateway to better game experiences. Experiences that will show off our new shiny console and wow us with stunning graphics and fast framerate glory.
There is something else though, a desire for games that showcase a new system and in this case it really does feel like slim pickings when it comes to showcasing Microsoft’s’ new power house.
We have Forza 7 of course but beyond that, with Crackdown 3 being delayed until next year there just isn’t anything that grabs the gamer and says – look! Look here at what this console can do!
With the lovely limited ‘Project Scorpio’ edition of the console selling out pretty much everywhere within hours of going on sale, it does beg the question of whether the games matter anymore to the consumer and if content is perhaps taking a back seat to bragging rights at owning the Most powerful Console we have ever had the opportunity to sit beneath our screens
It’s worth saying also, that the sales of the console could well be a show of faith from the gamers who have opened their wallets to this new system. That they (and us), are buying the ‘X’ on an understanding and an expectation that the guys over at Xbox will surely be working on delivering the kind of games that are fit for the power of this new beast sometime… soon..?
Let’s hope that comes to pass, as if it does not, we could enter a future where gaming systems are no longer bought for the quality of the games they provide but merely for the hardware they contain and surely, that’s not what gaming is all about.
But it’s not all doom and gloom, at long last, Cuphead has awakened from it’s lengthy development slumber and is looking full of frantic fury in one of the best looking games of Gamescom. It has been a while getting to this stage but with a release date for the end of September and a style all of it’s own, Cuphead not only looks fantastic but also shows that myriad terraflops are not the be all and end all of great gaming.
Oh, and of course there is the new Minecraft skinned Xbox One S for the devoted diggers out there. A true piece of design beauty that you can really see has been crafted with love. Featuring grass block detail on the console and coming with a creeper controller this is a desirable console indeed. You can complete the set by adding the separate pig controller too, a set up that just can’t help but make us smile.
This week in ‘What we’ve Been Playing’ Darren has been getting to grips with Housemarque’s latest shooter – Matterfall – where a combination of twin stick shooting, bullet hell and platforming come together to give us a gripping old school meets cutting edge arcade experience. Housemarque have created something here both familiar and new that will be having you see matter particles exploding in your sleep as you refine your style to climb that all important leaderboard.
and Darren has also been busy this week on Nidhogg 2 the sequel to the successful Nidhogg comes with an all new art style, all new weapons but is as frantic, joyous and frustrating as ever.
Shout with elation as you fell your opponent with your sword and run past jeering to the next screen. Cry with frustration as you run straight into a dagger that your opponent just let fly at your unprotected cranium. Battle it out with bows, swords, fists and feet as you remorselessly, valiantly battle, inch by inch to true victory. This is a game that no group of gamers should be without, especially for those post pub battles, just try not to fall out – it’s only a game after all.
Not to be out done by Microsoft’s new hardware announcements Sony had a new hardware announcement of their own, a limited edition Gran Turismo Sport PlayStation 4 console will release across UK, Europe and Australasia from 18th October to coincide with the release of Gran Turismo Sport (not Grand Theft Auto!).
As you can see from the above, the small, slim 1TB unit will feature a Gran Turismo Sport silver faceplate, emblazoned with the logo and a silver Dualshock 4 wireless controller with the Gran Turismo Sport logo on the touchpad.
The limited edition console comes with a Day 1 edition of the game which provides access to $250,000 in-game credits, livery sticker packs, a chrome racing helmet and 60 PS4 avatars.
If you want more information on some of the items in this weeks Podcast here are some handy links:
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