Games Inbox: Monster Hunter: World beta impressions, Mario vs. Zelda, and 30 years of Final Fantasy.

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Games Inbox: What did you think of the Monster Hunter: World beta?
Monster Hunter: World – what did you think of it?

The evening Inbox worries about the future of Marvel Vs. Capcom: Infinite, as one reader looks forward to Ni No Kuni II over The Last Of Us Part II.

To join in with the discussions yourself email [email protected]

PLEASE NOTE: We are currently getting content ready for the Christmas and New Year break, and since the calendar makes it a particularly long one this time we need as many Reader’s Features as possible to fill in while we’re away. So if you’ve been meaning to write a feature but not quite got round to it, now would be a great time to send one in – as described at the bottom of the page.

Whole new world

So who else was playing Monster Hunter: World at the weekend? I gave the beta a go and I have to say I was quite impressed. Monster Hunter was always one of those games I wanted to like but never really did. Like, I could see the appeal and enjoyed it to a degree but it was just too low tech and fiddly. This is definitely the best attempt yet to make it a more modern game, with a proper open world and decent graphics.

I love the amount of detail in the world and how the crafting isn’t just side thing to pretend the game has depth but pretty much the whole point of the game. I still wonder whether it’s really going to be a hit though. The thing that gets you first of all is still that the game is really clumsy and awkward. Not just the fighting and the using the weapons, although that’s obviously a big part of it, but everything about the interface and the way the game presents itself.

I just don’t see it grabbing the mainstream in the way Capcom are hoping, but I do predict it’ll be a much bigger hit than it has before, and maybe it can then work its way up properly. Being stuck on portables might have made its name in Japan but it’s what’s been keeping it back in the West.

Mascot battle

I have to say, I think the Mario team would be justified in feeling a bit hard done by at The Game Awards. Zelda: Breath Of The Wild is exceptional but I honestly think Super Mario Odyssey is the better game. It is the best Mario game ever, and that is saying something. There is literally never a dull moment with a level of invention, fun and whimsy most games can only dream of. Every design decision is spot on.

As sacrilegious as it sounded, not having lives means you’re always getting straight back into the action without the frustration of a game over screen. Increasing the number of Power Moons (Stars) to collect means you’re always discovering something new and are constantly rewarded for your curiosity. The hat capture mechanic is genius and means new gameplay mechanics can be introduced with every new enemy in a very intuitive, natural way.

Rather than being expansive the Kingdoms are densely packed with an amazing amount of detail, where every inch of space is put to use. Even collecting coins has been giving a new lease of life with Crazy Cap always having something of interest on offer. It’s surprising how satisfying it is getting a new outfit for Mario, even if it is purely aesthetic, and using photo mode (and video capture) to take shots of Mario’s travels adds a whole other layer of fun to the game.

I could go on forever, with wonderful music, including the superbly catchy Jump Up, SuperStar, beautifully diverse kingdoms, brilliantly-designed and challenging bosses, wonderfully wry dialogue, and the best map screens ever. In fact, my only real complaint is I wish there were more kingdoms, but I say that having only collected half of the power moons! The Mario team really do deserve a massive pat on the back for making not just the game of year but perhaps the best game ever!
Ryan O’D

Patience vs. Capcom

Capcom’s recent announcements regarding the future of Street Fighter is certainly good news. The Street Fighter Collection is one to look forward to and the DLC characters for Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition is much more interesting than the rather drab new characters they introduced in Season 2 (Akuma being the exception). I’m particularly looking forward to Sakura, Cody, and Sagat, although they really should have been in the game at launch. However, as much as I look forward to more Street Fighter I am now concerned over the immediate future of a more recently released Capcom Fighting game…

Of course, I’m referring to Marvel Vs Capcom: Infinite which had no new announcements recently regarding its future. I know that new characters were released recently, but I was hoping for some sort of announcement at PSX/Capcom Cup regarding the game. The recent DLC characters are really good (especially Venom). Perhaps the ongoing situation between Disney and Fox will have an effect on that (for X-Men and Fantastic 4 characters to appear).

The game obviously had a very troubled launch caused by issues that were pretty much self-inflicted, but I really hope that both Marvel or Capcom haven’t given up on it as it’s a really fun game to play. Hopefully it will get the same post launch treat as Street Fighter V is currently getting.
That Kenny Guy

GC: Venom and the other new characters was only two weeks ago, and there’s been new costume packs since then. That seems pretty good going to us.

E-mail your comments to: [email protected]

Fantastic issue

After seeing you mention the 30th Anniversary of Street Fighter, I thought readers might be interested in the latest issue of Edge which is already out which marks 30 years of Final Fantasy. There are 15 different Edge covers based on each of the mainline games and there is a 35 page(!) feature on the history of Final Fantasy. I got the Edge cover of Final Fantasy V, which I have not played.
Andrew J.
Just completed: Pony Island! (thought I wouldn’t like it but I enjoyed it as something completely different. Although I can understand if you don’t like it, as it is a pretty weird game).

Brighter alternative

For personally I can’t say I’m particularly looking forward to the new Last Of Us or Red Dead Redemption. They’re both sequels that I feel are somewhat unnecessary give how well the original’s worked. I’d much rather see something new at this point from both developers.

They also look very bleak and depressing, especially Last Of Us, and I don’t really think that’s something I (or the world) needs at the moment. If I want to be depressed and subject to images of over-the-top violence I’ll just watch the news, thanks.

I’m not saying I wouldn’t get either game because of this, but it does put a dampener on my enthusiasm. Only problem is I’m not sure what to say I am looking forward to, given there’s not been much else announced. Ni No Kuni, maybe? Although that’s a sequel too…

Blacking out

I have heard of some people saying their PS4 Pro sounds like a jet engine, but my PS4 Oro has been fine. That was until I downloaded WipEout Omega Collection at the weekend. I paused the game for a couple of minutes, only for me and the family to wonder if a hurricane had blown up outside. It took a few seconds to realise that it was the PlayStation 4! It’s only happened so far with WipEout, so is this an issue with the game?

I also have the PlayStation 4 blacking out for a few seconds every time I use it, I know this is a common problem and I have tried every solution I have read but still get it (thankfully it only happens once each time). I am surprised Sony still have not said anything about this, as the Internet is full of gamers having the same problem.

I did read somewhere that having a console plugged into an extension cable (especially a power surge one) can cause power problems, but where my TV is I need an extension. Thankfully the blackouts don’t happen anymore on my PlayStation V, maybe one of the updates fixed that.

GC: The PS4 Pro can get like that occasionally, but it it’s only a problem if it keeps happening. We’d be more worried about the blackouts.

More games, please

Hey, I’ve just seen that Papers, Please is coming out on PS Vita tomorrow! Not the biggest headline of the year, perhaps, but I’m glad to see the console is getting indie support. The PS Vita is such a great machine, that Capcom obviously gave up long before they even launched it.

The form factor is very similar to Switch and you just feel if they’d pushed themselves a little bit it could’ve been Sony’s version of the same idea years earlier. But in the end it was just a superpowerful portable that nobody ever took full advantage. Hence why the game I’m getting excited about on it looks like it could run on a Spectrum.

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

Fallen angels

RE: Hot Topic, may be late. Saints Row 1 was excellent, slightly over the top action, good selection of vehicles, a nice setting, and a half decent, if unfortunately short, story. Then we got the second game, same great city that had been expanded to the point where it felt familiar but fresh, more of the same in terms of gameplay – which is meant as a compliment, drastic changes aren’t always needed. And despite the story being a bit weaker than the first they added co-op, where the whole story was playable with a second person. What’s not to enjoy?

The third was brought out and disaster struck, ew city which was basically New Yaw(n)k, and it was tiny. The subtle humour basically became fart jokes that were thrown at you. Loads of vehicles were removed, and the ones that stayed all felt the same anyway. The story suddenly became about aliens and space, the gameplay changed from what was a decent GTA clone into a rubbish InFamous clone.

Then came the fourth, which I didn’t bother with, and the standalone DLC game Gat Out Of Hell, which I played due to it being on PS Plus. I’ll admit I enjoyed it more than I thought I would, but it just wasn’t a Saints Row game. Not the Saints Row I enjoyed anyway. Many fans liked the changes, but many didn’t. I’d get a fifth game if was back to the roots as such, but I can’t see it happening. And with the Agents Of Mayhem spin-off flopping the way it did a fifth might not happen at all.

Inbox also-rans

That Street Fighter collection looks great. Now wait to find out Capcom are going to charge £100 or something for it. They should do considering how expensive Ultra Street Fighter II was, or otherwise they’ll be exposed for taking advantage.

RE: Readers’ Feature. ‘I believe we’re yet to see some choices in video games make a major difference’. Life Is Strange, The Witcher 3, and Papers, Please are my counter offers. I agree that games too often dress up the illusion of choice.
SuoTempore (PSN ID)

This week’s Hot Topic

With the final preview event of 2017 now over this weekend’s Inbox asks what was your favourite new video game reveal of the year?

Taking into account showings at E3, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, The Game Awards, Nintendo Directs, and all the others, which new announcement did you think was handled the best – regardless of whether you were interested in the game itself? Which did you find the most surprising and which new game are you personally most excited about?

Were there any major announcements you were expecting to see but didn’t, and where there any reveals that you thought dropped the ball in terms of what or how much they revealed?

E-mail your comments to: [email protected]

The small print
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