Lgndary Thoughts - Sean Murray Still Needs To Be Held Accountable

I wanted to have a quick word on my videos before I get to the Lgndary Thought. The most previous video that I made, "When Will Sony Launch The PS5", is the only video that I can even remotely consider a success. It is currently sitting at about 700 views (which is more than all of my other videos combined), and has even garnered some comments and a few new subscribers. It is also the video that I worked the hardest on, and I think that shows. So I just want everyone to be aware that, instead of making a video every single week just for the sake of making a video, I would like to put in a little bit more effort on the videos themselves as well as the topics I talk about. Thanks again for your support, and be sure to give it a watch if you haven't already!

Happy Friday everyone! Sorry for being absent last week, I have started taking some classes online and am still getting adjusted. I’ll try to be more active in the future. For today, I decided to write a Thought about a Studio Founder, video game developer, and a liar. Welcome to Lgndary Thoughts!

As some of you may have already guessed, the liar I am referring to the founder of Hello Games, Sean Murray. Hello Games is best known for their most recently released title, No Man’s Sky. An ambitious game that failed to live up to a lot of the promises that Murray made for it before launch. But saying that it didn't live up to expectations might be the understatement of the year. Because Sean Murray took every opportunity he could to get up on stage at big gaming events, and do interviews, and even be a guest on Stephen Colbert’s talk show. And when he was talking about No Man’s Sky, he was constantly, and consistently lying on a level that has rarely been seen in the video game industry. 

That may seem like an exaggeration, but it is the truth. Sean Murray lied about choices that players could make in No Man’s Sky, he lied about how planets and solar systems would work, he lied about how the wildlife would work, and he lied about plenty of other features too. He even did all of that lying very boldly. He wasn't sly about those features, he didn't give vague answers that could be taken in different ways, or misinterpreted. He lied. Boldly and brashly.

The biggest of his lies was, of course, the claim that No Man’s Sky would feature multiplayer.  Murray did say that, due to the scale of the game, it would be incredibly unlikely for players to find each other in-game, but he did state that it was possible. To this day, I am convinced that he was so high on his game that he truly felt that no players would ever actually meet up, and nobody would ever be able to call him on his bullshit. 

But we know that isn’t true. Very quickly after launch, two players did meet up on the exact same planet, and they could not see, or interact with each other at all. And when called out on this massive lie, Sean Murray simply remarked how incredible it was that two players would be able to find each other in the massive universe of No Man’s Sky. 

Sean Murray’s behavior, before and after launch, was disgusting, and to this day he is not owning up to it. Instead, he is playing the victim card in an attempt to dodge questions about why he lied so much leading up to No Man’s Sky’s launch. 

For those that don’t know, it was recently revealed that Hello Games received bomb and death threats in the months after No Man’s Sky’s release. Now, this doesn’t really need to be said, but I’ll say it anyways. Bomb and death threats are bad. There is no circumstance where they are acceptable. And the few gamers who constantly make threats like these are a problem that should be dealt with.

But that is a separate conversation that needs to be had. Those threats do not, and should not erase from history the level that Sean Murray lied about his game. He still owes everyone that bought No Man’s Sky an apology, as well as an explanation. And he needs to be held accountable for his actions. 

The fact that No Man’s Sky has just recently been updated to include multiplayer doesn’t change any of this either. It is so ridiculously frustrating that so many people are ready to forget everything he did because some fans went too far, and because the game eventually got an update to include a feature promised at launch. All this does is encourage developers to blatantly lie about their game, because they’ll never truly be held accountable. 

Plenty of game developers lie, stretch the truth, or exaggerate about their games. But what Sean Murray did was beyond the pale. He lied over, and over, and over again. And to this day, he is still refusing to own up to his abhorrent behavior. I refuse to support him, or Hello Games until that changes, or he leaves the studio. And I encourage everyone to do the same.

Lgndary Thoughts - Could Sony Release A PS5 Pro At The Start Of Next Gen?

Hello everyone! I was planning on making another video this week, but the scope of it grew and I didn't want to rush it. So I decided to write a short article instead. I would also like to, again, apologize for the lack of content. I am still trying to push through the stress and figure things out. Feel free to message me if you have any thoughts!

E3 may be over, but there is still a lot of discussion to be had. This week, I would like to take a closer look at a comment made by Phil Spencer during Microsoft’s Keynote. Here is what he said:

"Our hardware team, the same team that delivered unprecedented performance with Xbox One X is deep into architecting the next Xbox consoles."

Even just mentioning the next console generation is exciting, but the most interesting thing of note here is Phil saying “consoles”, meaning more than one. While it is possible that he is talking about something completely different, I believe he is revealing that Microsoft intends to release two separate consoles at the start of the next generation. And if that is true, Sony is likely considering the same strategy. 

Releasing more powerful versions of consoles is nothing new. With the PS4 Pro, Xbox One X, and even the New 3DS, each of the console makers has done this. But all of those systems launched years after the original console. The idea of releasing a PS5 Pro at the same time as the base model would be something very different, and potentially very exciting. 

There would be several risks and challenges, however, with launching a PS5 Pro so early. And one of them is the price. The PS4 launched to tremendous success at a $400 price point, and I imagine that Sony will want to stay close to that in the future. But a Pro version would have to offer much more power at a reasonable costs. Personally, I don’t think they could go above $600 for the Pro model. That is how much the larger storage PS3 cost at launch, and even then people were not happy. But I think they could get away with it, as long as it provided much better visuals and performance. 

This would be a great move for consumers if Sony were to take this route. The PS4 launched at $400, and so did the PS4 Pro years later. So if you are like me, you would have bought the original model at launch, only to have to spend the same amount of money for the improved version. Overall, it could cost someone $800. But the option to buy a more powerful version of the PS5 at launch would negate having to buy a second console. 

But that only works if Sony doesn’t release an even more powerful version years after the initial release. I know a lot of people would jump at the opportunity to purchase a PS5 Pro right out of the gate. But I don’t think anyone, including myself, would be happy if an even more powerful PS5 was launched years later. The only reason a Pro version at launch would be appealing is if it acted as a future proof system. Sony would have to unequivocally guarantee that it would be the most powerful PS5 for the whole generation. And I’m not sure they would be willing to do that. 

Overall, I think launching a PS5 Pro at the same time as the base model is a great idea. It allows consumers to spend a little bit more money for a more powerful product at the start of the generation. But it also means that Sony might lose their chance at selling people the same console twice. So whether or not it actually happens is anyone’s guess. I just hope that Sony thinks more about us in this regard, instead of themselves. As unlikely as that may be. 

Lgndary Thoughts - What Are You Playing?

Happy Friday everyone! Things have been a little slow with E3 having come and gone, so there won’t be a video this week. Instead, I thought it would be nice to discuss what we have all been playing recently. Welcome to Lgndary Thoughts!

For starters, I have finally beaten Bloodborne! I know, I know, it took me far too long. I bought the game at launch, played it for a bit and loved it so much that I went out and bought Dark Souls II so I could play through that first. I got a little side tracked after finishing Dark Souls II, but earlier this year I finally got the time to pick it back up, and couldn’t stop playing until I was finished. 

It easily is one of my favorite games of all time. The lore, the difficulty, the battle mechanics, everything about it was incredible. I have to give a special shoutout to the bosses as well. So many games these days are moving away from having bosses at all, so it is very refreshing to have a large amount of unique, challenging fights to experience. I very much look forward to my second play-through where I’ll get to use the scythe!

After I finished Bloodborne, I moved to two different games. The first of which is Splatoon 2. I have talked about Splatoon here a lot, as it is one of my favorite games. But the Octo Expansion was a great reason to go back. I don’t really care for the single player content of the game, but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to play as an Octoling. I am loving the new look and animations they have, but I am disappointed by the lack of hairstyles. I do like the options they have, but more variety is always nice. Hopefully, they add a couple more before the end of the year.

The final game that I have been focusing on is Hollow Knight, which I have found to be a masterpiece of a game. It actually reminds me a lot of the Souls series, and not just because it has similar mechanics when it comes to in-game currency. The atmosphere, the music, the mysterious nature of the game, and even the exploration aspect all give me the same feeling I have when playing Souls titles. This is honestly one of the best games I have ever played. I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but I think it is better than God of War. I truly cannot recommend this game enough.

That is all from me this week! I’m not sure how many people still check here, but those that do should let me know what you’ve been playing. Have a good weekend everyone! And expect a video sometime next week!

Lgndary Thoughts - This Year's E3 Keynotes Ranked

E3 is over, and the dust has settled. This year we saw a total of 7 publishers/developers host a keynote, and I am here to rank them. Starting with the worst, and working up to the best, here is what I think:

Square Enix - Square Enix comes in last, not because their conference was bad, but because it didn't really feel like a press conference. It was only 30 minutes long, and offered nothing more than slightly interesting reveals. Babylon looks interesting, sure, especially since it is developed by Platinum Games. But I don’t put too much stock into CG reveals that show no gameplay. 

Kingdom Hearts III was present and looked great, of course, but this is a game that has already had a lot of gameplay showcased before. New trailers of it were also present at other keynotes, which further diminished the impact it had during Square’s. If they had saved the release date reveal for their keynote, it could have made a difference. But that too was announced a couple of days before.

Sony - Sony just barely avoided being bottom of the pile this year. I was immediately suspicious when Shawn Layden announced that they were doing things a little differently this year, because that is almost always code for “we don’t have much to show so we have to mask that somehow”. Unfortunately for everyone, the masking only made things worse. 

If having to sit through two separate out of place musical performances, as well as a weird intermission where everyone had to switch buildings was the only problem with Sony’s keynote, I think they would have been okay. But even when their conference started to build up it disappointed. The footage of their games we saw looked great, assuming non of it was scripted (looking at you, The Last of Us II). But the show still lacked any big surprises, or a deep dive of any of their titles. Resulting in a very disappointing E3 for them.

Ubisoft - Ubisoft’s conference wasn't anything too spectacular, but it certainly wasn't a disappointment. Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey, Beyond Good and Evil 2, and the Star Fox and Donkey Kong announcements made for a pretty solid lineup. Just like the other keynotes, a big surprise reveal could have taken it over the top, but I am satisfied with what they presented. 

EA - EA’s was fairly similar to Ubisoft’s in that they were both standard press conferences that featured exciting content but lacked a huge surprise. I actually had trouble placing these two, but in the end I gave the edge to EA for a couple of reasons. The first was a great gameplay showing of Anthem. I feel it is always important to not only show gameplay, but to show it how players will actually experience it. That means having a UI and controls readily apparent.

The other reason was the announcement and launch of Unravel 2. I’ll talk more about this later, but I always appreciate when publishers actually launch games at E3. It gives gamers more than just things to look forward to, and I feel not enough publishers do that these days.

Bethesda - Bethesda also had a pretty good show. It was full of odd announcements that felt a little out of place a gaming’s biggest event of the year, but they didn't detract from Bethesda’s reveals in the end. The bulk of the show went to the recently announced Fallout: 76, a game that I was ready to write off the second multiplayer was mentioned. But I actually walked away impressed with the vision for 76. I am still a skeptic, but I plan on watching the game closely before release.

Having said that, if Fallout 76 was the final reveal for Bethesda, I would have been let down. But the Starfield and Elder Scrolls VI announcements saved the show. I do hate that we got nothing more than a logo for each of them, but knowing that Starfield exists is enough for me.

Nintendo - Nintendo comes in second this year because, despite not having too many announcements, they did provide an exciting E3 by giving more to gamers now. An Octopath demo, Hollow Knight, and the Splatoon 2 expansion were all surprise launches that made Nintendo’s showcase about more than just the future. 

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate also gave Nintendo a significant lead this year. Not only does the game look incredible, they also provided those watching with a ton of real gameplay. They even hosted a tournament that allowed professional Smash players the chance to play the game and voice their impressions to those not lucky enough to attend. 

Microsoft - I’m putting Microsoft on top this year because they were one of the few that had what I would consider a real press conference. They announced some interesting exclusives for Xbox, talked about more than just games, and even got to reveal exciting 3rd party titles like Sekiro and Cyberpunk. At the end of the day, the gaming experience is still going to be best with Playstation, as the best games Microsoft announced will also be on PS4. But as far as keynotes go, Microsoft has risen above all others for the first time in years. 

Lgndary Thoughts - E3 2018 Hopes and Dreams

E3 is right around the corner, and more and more announcements continue to come out every day. Even still, I’m sure that the best stuff will be saved for the actual event. With that in mind, here are the games I am most excited to see next week! Welcome to Lgndary Thoughts!

Anthem - Anthem is one of my most anticipated titles and, something that I have mentioned before, is also a great concern of mine. Bioware is not in a good place right now after Mass Effect: Andromeda, and Anthem’s success is likely to determine their future. But more than that, I really just want a good game. I loved the first Destiny and the new concepts it brought, but Bungie dropped the ball with the sequel, and I think it is time someone give them a run for their money. 

To do that, Anthem has to be perfect. Personally speaking, I would like to see strong shooting mechanics, unique classes, a large amount of content to experience (including lots of gear to obtain), and a good story with detailed lore. But just as importantly, they have to get microtransactions right. I’m sure they are planning to pursue more than just a base $60 from players, especially considering their plans to (I hope) support the game with a ton of content post-launch. This is something that I accept, but only if they don’t push too hard and get too greedy. Pay-to-win is obviously unacceptable, but past that we will just have to cross our fingers and see what they come up with.

Starfield - For those that don’t know, Starfield is a game that Bethesda is heavily rumored to be working on. They trademarked the name years ago, so it is likely that they are, at the very least working on something called Starfield. But rumors point to it being their next big RPG akin to Fallout and Skyrim, only in space. And that is exactly what I want it to be. A big, ambitious evolution of a Bethesda RPG that plays, and looks incredible.

In regards to visuals, my expectations have been rising for Starfield after a recent Bethesda announcement. A few months ago, a Bethesda Rep said that they are working on 2 games. The first of which would, while having some small improvements in visuals, would be made with their old engine. And that a second game was using something new. They even said employees working on the first game couldn’t wait to finish and move over to the second title to work with all the new tools the new engine offers. I had assumed that the first game was Starfield, but after last week’s Fallout 76 announcement (which obviously uses their old engine), I’m starting to get hopeful that Starfield is going to look significantly better than Fallout 4.

Cyberpunk 2077 - I’m also hoping that CD Projekt Red’s highly anticipated Cyberpunk 2077 will be fully revealed next week. The game was announced years ago before The Witcher 3 even launched, and it would be nice if we could finally see some gameplay. I actually find it funny that so many people, including myself, are so incredibly hyped for a game that we know almost nothing about. The gameplay, setting, and even story continue to remain a mystery. I’m not sure that this will be the E3 to change that, but I certainly hope it is. 

These are a few of my biggest hopes for E3 2018. But no matter what happens, I think we are all in for an exciting week. What are you hoping to see? Don’t forget to leave a comment below!

Side note - I will be covering E3 this year with traditional posts, so be sure to check back here starting Saturday for E3 goodness!

Lgndary Thoughts - April's PS Plus Games

Happy Friday everyone! Due to personal reasons, I wasn't originally going to be able to write a Thought this week. But I felt bad, and decided to whip this one up real quick. So it will be a little short and sweet this week. Welcome to Lgndary Thoughts!

As April is right around the corner, a new batch of PS Plus games have just recently been revealed. For those that missed the announcement, here is the full lineup!

  • Mad Max, PS4
  • Trackmania Turbo, PS4
  • In Space we Brawl, PS3 (Cross Buy with PS4)
  • Toy Home, PS3
  • 99 Vidas, PS Vita (Cross Buy with PS3 and PS4)
  • Q*Bert Rebooted, PS Vita (Cross Buy with PS3 and PS4)

For me personally, I'm a little disappointed with April's PS Plus games. Even still, I'm sure many people will be happy with what is available.

While I have no interest in Mad Max, I still feel it is a perfect PS Plus game. For starters, it continues the trend of having at least one AAA title, and I believe it is a game that didn't do great when it came to sales. I've always felt that the best PS Plus games are the ones that were overlooked when they originally launched.

Trackmania also fits that description, minus the AAA part of course. I imagine there are a lot of people out there just like me that didn't really pay attention to it originally, but that are going to be giving it a chance now. I don't know much about it, but it looks interesting enough, and I'm sure it will generate a few new fans at the very least.

All in all, April's lineup certainly isn't as exciting as last month's Bloodborne and Ratchet and Clank. But we can't expect every month to bring us that level of quality. Mad Max and Trackmania, while being a step down, should provide plenty of hours of enjoyment.

I hope everyone has a great weekend, and don't forget to let me know what you think of next month's PS Plus games in the comments below!

Lgndary Thoughts - What Are You Playing?

For starters, I would like to apologize for the odd posting hours this week. My dog has been sick and had to go to the vet a few times this week. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t terrified, but things are looking so much better now. After one last appointment next week, she’ll be in the clear. I appreciate everyone’s patience on this. 

Moving on! This week will be more relaxed as I have just realized it has been quite awhile since we last discussed what everyone was playing. Time to fix that! Welcome to Lgndary Thoughts!

As always, I will start with Final Fantasy XIV. I’ve actually been taking a break from playing seriously for a bit. I was in a raid group for awhile, but the leader turned out to be ill-equipped to manage it. Things got stressful, so I just decided to leave. But I’m taking advantage of my new found time to play some other games!

One game in my backlist that I have finally decided to finish is Pokemon Ultra Moon. I am a huge Pokemon fan, but I would be lying if I said Ultra Moon was disappointing as a whole. It is really difficult going back to the 3DS after playing the Switch so much. I was also disappointed to find that, at least so far, the game has seen almost no changes from the original Moon. But I still feel obligated to finish it. At the end of the day, it is still Pokemon.

I also jumped back into Bloodborne for a bit. It felt like my heart was going to beat out of my chest the entire time, as I guess I’ve lost a little bit of my courage in the break I took. But I pushed through and even took out a boss! I wish I could say I beat it on my first try, but unfortunately, I briefly forgot the number one rule in a Souls game: never get cocky when the boss’ HP is low. The boss had just a sliver of health left, so I jumped in without thinking and got myself killed. It is a hard lesson to learn, especially when it has to be learned multiple times. 

As you can see, I’ve been spending most of my game time working through games in my backlog. But what about you? Let me know what you’ve been playing over the past few weeks, or what you are looking forward to playing in the near future. Thanks everyone, have a good weekend!

Lgndary Thoughts - The End of Major PS4 Updates?

A major firmware update launched for Playstation 4 about a week ago bringing the system up to version 5.5. But while the update was considered a major one, the feature list begs to differ. What does that mean for software updates going forward? Welcome to Lgndary Thoughts!

I’ve talked before about how the Xbox One does software updates much better, especially when it comes to how often they are released (average once a month). And I am often told the same thing in response: “The Xbox One is much more like a PC, which makes it a lot easier for Microsoft to push updates faster”. I don’t really buy that the architecture of the PS4 is holding Sony back in any serious way when it comes to speed, but that isn’t something that I am going to focus on today. Because Sony no longer just has a problem with the rate of updates, they have a problem with the quality of them as well.

Despite being a major update for the PS4, version 5.5 only served to introduce modest, mostly boring improvements. If I had to pick the most significant change that 5.5 brought, I would probably have to choose the ability to use images as a custom background (something that should have been available at launch). 

To compare, here is a look at a few features that were added to the Xbox One over the past few months:

  • Game hub information available in the guide
  • Ability to target specific achievements to unlock
  • Ability to save console settings to the cloud
  • Ability to gift games to friends

All of these additions are far more useful and interesting than anything that Sony has brought to the PS4 in awhile. And that is the issue, It wasn’t just 5.5 that was dull. PS4 updates have been lacking for a long time now, with most of them only offering behind the scenes improvements, over user level additions.

I can’t help but feel that Sony is simply done updating their console. To some, this may not be a big deal. I’m sure the PS5 is right around the corner after all. But there are still so many quality of life features that the PS4 could use, and I believe it is a mistake to be done with it where it is now. 

Lgndary Thoughts - March's PS Plus Lineup

A new month, a new batch of PS Plus games. I’m sure many of you already know, but the March lineup announcement for PS Plus was actually very exciting, and for more than one reason. Welcome to Lgndary Thoughts!

For those that missed it, here are the PS Plus games for this month:

  • Bloodborne, PS4
  • Ratchet & Clank, PS4
  • Legend of Kay, PS3
  • Mighty No. 9, PS3 (Cross Buy with PS4)
  • Claire: Extended Cut, PS Vita (Cross Buy with PS4)
  • Bombing Busters, PS Vita (Cross Buy with PS4)

What a month! The trend of AAA games being included continues, but this month goes even further than usual and includes 2 of them. I already own Bloodborne (but am looking forward to having it digitally), so I won’t benefit too much personally, but I am certainly excited for so many others that will finally be giving this game a shot. It is easily one of my favorite Playstation 4 games of all time, and an excellent intro into the “Soulsborne” genre. 

Ratchet & Clank is where my real excitement lies this month, as I have yet to play it. I know, I know. I’m a little late to the party. In the end, however, I am glad that I waited.

But like I said, Sony had more to announce this month regarding PS Plus than just the usual lineup. Effective starting a year from now, the PS Vita and PS3 will no longer receive monthly games from PS Plus. I expect many fans of those systems will be upset, but I believe this is actually great news, and something that I have wanted them to do for awhile. As I have said in a previous Thought, the PS3 and the PS Vita, as sad as it may be, are dead systems. Dropping them would allow for a greater focus on the console that is still alive and kicking today. 

Of course, that won’t matter if Sony simply drops support, and nothing else. Will the absence of PS3/ PS Vita games from the PS Plus lineup mean that more resources can go to the PS4? Will we get more than 2 games a month? Will those games be higher quality? Will more features be introduced? To be honest, I would be shocked if Sony did anything differently at all.

I hate to say it, but Sony is not the kind of company that thinks they owe anything to anybody for any reason. Nintendo gave launch day 3DS owners free games to compensate for the price reduction, but Sony has never thought like that. I can almost guarantee that Sony will say something along the lines of “The service we offer PS4 owners is worth the cost of PS Plus as is. No changes are necessary just because PS3/PSVita support has been dropped”

I’d like to think I’ll be wrong, and there certainly is a chance that I am, but I don’t plan on getting my hopes up. Luckily, the PS4 offerings with PS Plus have been great, so we won’t have to get too upset as long as we continue to get games as good as Bloodborne and Ratchet & Clank.

Lgndary Thoughts - The Future of Monster Hunter

Happy Friday everyone! For starters, I’d like to apologize about the lack of a Thought last week. Like I had said, I had to go out of state to visit my sister. But unfortunately, the GPS decided to stop working partway through and we had to finish the drive the old fashion way. It took a lot longer than it should have and was not fun. 

Moving on! Today, I would like to talk about a recent title that came out to tremendous success, and where the developer should take it next. Welcome to Lgndary Thoughts!

As you may have guessed, I am talking about Monster Hunter: World. It launched just a few weeks ago, and ended up selling about 5 million copies within 3 days of release. Making it Capcom’s fastest selling title ever. With that level of success, I cant image they aren’t already thinking about where Monster Hunter should go next, so how about we do the same?

Recently, I was reading some discussion about Monster Hunter: World, and how it compared to Destiny 2. Both of which are multiplayer titles, and both of which are very popular. There were some people comparing each title, and what made them different. One difference that was pointed out was the fact that World had an ending, where Destiny did not. Eventually, players will beat every monster in the game, get every piece of armor in the game, and be down with it. 

To some, this is a good thing. A lot of games these days don’t really end and it can become overwhelming. But I personally think that Monster Hunter would be perfect for the “shared-world” genre going forward. MH: World already suffers from not being seamless enough when it comes to multiplayer, and players all being able to mingle in a hub world where invites can be sent, and guilds made would make things a lot easier. 

It would also be nice to have a fairly constant stream of content coming in. New monsters, new weapons, and new gear would all be givens. And maybe they could even add a new area for an expansion type DLC pack. 

I know there are going to be a lot of people that aren’t going to go for this. The biggest drawback of which is that Capcom would have to make their money back somehow. That would potentially mean micotransactions, paid DLC packs, etc. Which is certainly something to be concerned about. I wrote a few weeks ago about how development prices continue to go up, while the price of games stays the same. Unfortunately, there isn’t really a perfect answer as to how developers can counter that, and continue to deliver content on a regular basis. I’d like to think that Capcom can go the Splatoon route, and do it all for free, but that may be asking for too much. 

At the end of the day, however, Monster Hunter has finally breached into the mainstream and has become the tremendous success that it always deserved to be. Whatever Capcom does with the series in the future, I have faith that it will continue to grow the series like never before.