Tag: xbox+360 (page 1 of 12)

PS3 – PC In Disguise

The whole point of a console is to provide great looking games that are guaranteed to work without the hassle of installing the game, patching it, opening up firewall ports and configuring server and friend lists on a per game basis. It’s what I’ve become used to with the original Xbox and then the 360. So why is the PS3 so fucked up?

Before I rant on I should say this isn’t a Microsoft fanboy love in post. The PS3 is a great media player and there’s lot’s of things I really like about it compared to the 360. However the amount of firmware updates it’s now had are bordering on the ridiculous. Even worse, I still can’t access my friends list, chat to friends, playback music or easily swap to another game while in a current game. I need to quit and go back to the XMB and then I can chat etc. It feels so backwards when compared to the 360. Sony are promising in game XMB this year but I’ll believe it when I see it.

Another growing trend on the PS3 is installation of games. If you download anything from PSN then you then have to install it. This applies to all games, from the small 40Meg games up to gigabyte installs for Warhawk and GT5:Prologue. However more and more games insist on an install before you can even play the game. Most Capcom games and now GT5:Prologue want to install content on the hard drive. While this allegedly improves performance this step is taking up to 20 mins – hardly a console experience. Makes me chuckle when I think back to MS launching the original Xbox and how Sony sneered that it used a hard disk and was really just a PC. How times have changed.

Further annoyance with GT5 was an update you had to download before you could play the game. This took about an hour for me to download but I was lucky. I know a couple of people that had to try many times before the download actually worked. Grrrr. Once in the game GT5 lists ports that should be opened as well for online play. I’ve not had to do that for a game in years. How many people would know what to do?

I think that’s my major annoyance on the PS3. It feels bitty compared to the unified experience on the 360. It feels like PC gaming. Simple tasks on the 360 are made difficult or impossible on the PS3. Headset’s are a given on the 360 yet on the PS3, because they aren’t standard, you get issues. Quiet games or worse, compatibility issues within games. It’s for all those reasons, plus the fact that the majority of friends are using the 360, that non platform exclusives are always purchased for the 360 and there is nothing that Sony are doing that look like changing my mind. Shame.

Fifa or PES?

For the football loving gamer this is usually an annual question with an easy answer. If you prefer real stadiums, teams, leagues and players as well as some great graphics you pick Fifa. If you prefer subtle controls, a more realistic game and some flowing animations you pick PES. For me PES has always been an easy choice. Fifa suffered from repetitive gameplay, easy goal scoring and a real lack of challenge. PES was tough and I felt a better sim of football.

However the last release of PES on the 360 was disappointing. Stuttery graphics and more importantly gameplay that was far less fluid than the PS2 version had left a bad taste in the mouth. Online wasn’t bad but it wasn’t exactly glowing either. A subsequent patch had left it almost unplayable as it would drop half way through a match.

The demo’s for this years versions pointed to a far closer battle. PES was smoother in game than before but still stuttered badly in replays. Fifa felt very slow but had a lot more depth than previous versions. Both had camera issues but that was down to poor options in the demo.

Why I Bought PES
So I stumped up for PES yet again. The game was a lot better than last year with all in game stutter a memory that only returned during replays – they were awful! The gameplay was also smoother with a lot more depth and a nice feel to the game. Strict referee’s were back but once again i was happy with PES. Online though was a kick in the teeth. The first online PES 2 years ago was a mixed bag. Cheats could quit without penalty and the net code wasn’t the best. But it did allow 2 vs 2. Last years was less laggy but cheats could still prosper. Also the hosting was shared between the two gamers…meaning you could have a great first half if your hosting followed by a horrible, laggy, torrent spoiled second half. 2 vs 2 was also dropped.

This year still sees only 1 vs 1 and the couple of games I played were mixed. Seemed to go OK but after a period the lag was horrendous making the game unplayable. It was PES but only just. This was disappointing especially with Fifa promising online leagues, a way of playing for your team online and also a 5 vs 5 mode. To be honest I laughed when I read that – they’ve no chance of getting that to work well.

Why I bought Fifa
A couple of trusted friends eventually bought Fifa….and loved it. It didn’t have the depth or the fluidity of PES but online it rocked and the 5 vs 5 mode…..worked a treat. I’ve had the game over two weeks now and it is superb online. 1 vs 1 and up to 5 vs 5 is a very special game mode. Lag free and just a joy to play. It can be spoiled by greedy and mouthy players but played with a few friends is a great experience.

Graphically the game is good although sometimes the animations are a bit clunky. Sometimes the game can frustrate as it just isn’t as good as PES. However the online mode is so good you can overlook those issues.

You also have the ability to create your own public and private leagues, upload video’s and pictures to the net and take part in matches representing your team. Offline has much the same modes as PES but not to the same depth as PES master league.

So what should you buy?
If you only play offline, PES. If you are going to play online at all or never have done but like multiplayer gaming them Fifa is for you. It’s been a long time coming but Fifa has finally bettered PES this year for me. If only Konami could get near Fifa’s performance online – what a game that would be.

Orange Stats

Looking forward to playing Orange Box (especially Portal) at Christmas. Glad I kept that game back during the games deluge over the last month or so. Something Valve is known for is publishing game stats and with Team Fortress 2 they haven’t let anyone down. Great to see how popular certain classes, weapons and map’s are. Achievements also broken down – looks like it wasn’t played that much on-line with big parties. Either that or people have no friends.

Cheaper PS3

Announced today, there’s a new PS3 for £299 with no backwards compatibility, a smaller hard disk and only 2 USB ports, no media card drives. A pretty good price. The 60GB model drops to £349 and includes two first party PS3 games. So that’s what they are doing with Lair then!!

It’s a good price drop and takes it into 360 range especially as the features dropped aren’t essential in my opinion. However it leaves just one little question. Where’s the fecking games?

Metacritc PS3 Top 20
1 Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, The 93
2 Ninja Gaiden Sigma 88
3 NHL 08 88
4 Resistance: Fall of Man 86
5 Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Vegas 86
6 Virtua Fighter 5 85
7 Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2 85
8 Sega Rally Revo 85
9 MotorStorm (JPN Import Version) 84
10 Warhawk 84
11 Super Stardust HD 84
12 SKATE 84
13 NBA 2K8 84
14 DiRT: Colin McRae Off-Road 83
15 Fight Night Round 3 83
16 MotorStorm 82
17 Gran Turismo HD Concept 82
18 Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection 82
19 College Hoops 2K7 81
20 NBA Street Homecourt 81
Metacritc Xbox 360 Top 20
1 BioShock 96
2 Halo 3 94
3 Gears of War 94
4 Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, The 94
5 Guitar Hero II 92
6 Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 90
7 Forza Motorsport 2 90
8 Call of Duty 2 90
9 Castlevania: Symphony of the Night 89
10 Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Vegas 89
11 Burnout Revenge 89
12 NHL 08 88
13 Project Gotham Racing 3 88
14 Project Gotham Racing 4 87
15 Elder Scrolls IV: Shivering Isles, The 86
16 Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 86
17 Fight Night Round 3 86
18 Elder Scrolls IV: Knights of the Nine, The 86
19 Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2 86
20 SKATE 86

The table show the top 20 games on the PS3 and XBox 360 according to the average ratings as shown on Metacritic. I thought this would be the fairest way as biased reviews would be averaged ut across platforms. Doesn’t make very good reading for the PS3, does it? Where are the AAA exclusive titles for the PS3? They’ve been and gone and weren’t that good. It’s poor that the best rated exclusive title is Resistance which was a release game. It was good but that review score was very generous. Compare with the top 3 on the 360 and it makes for a compelling reason not to pick up a PS3. Even cross platform games are picking up the same score if not better on the 360.

If Sony wants to pick up sales it needs to address the games. If the PS3 had the AAA titles that the 360 has enjoyed then price wouldn’t be an issue and there wouldn’t be an entry level console launched today.

Free Bungie

The rumours were true, Bungie is on the road to independence. Their take on it can be found here. I wonder what that means for future 360 exclusivity?

Bungie is like a shark according to their press release. Only time will tell.

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