One of the attractions of BioWare games is the ability for the player to make decisions in past games and have those decisions impact the stories of their sequels. Dragon Age and Mass Effect are prime examples of two series that benefited greatly from this feature. But there is (was) one problem…
With the Xbox One and PS4 now in the picture, and with Dragon Age: Inquisition being offered on both current-gen and last-gen consoles, BioWare had to address the potential issue of players seeking to transfer saved data from the Xbox 360 and PS3 over to the new hardware. If players choose to play Inquisition on the old systems, their save files will import easily; however, jumping ship to one of the new gaming machines requires a new way to import those files. The Canadian developer’s solution is both simple — at least from the eyes of a gamer — and creative: “Dragon Age Keep”.
Dragon Age Keep is an online system that uses cloud storage to allow players to tailor decisions made in Dragon Age: Origins and Dragon Age II and import them into Dragon Age: Inquisition. You need not have played any of the previous games to take full advantage of it; all you essentially do is tick boxes for each decision that might have been made had those games been played. Anyone — players new to the series or fanatic fanboys — can use the system to experience the alternative braches in Inquisition’s storyline.
For the newbies, there will be a large codex of information that helps you understand the people, places, and events that shaped the world leading up through the Dragon Age franchise.
We wouldn’t be surprised if such a system proliferated throughout the video game industry. Moreover, there is a chance that the new Mass Effect game and future installments may also get a system like Dragon Age Keep, one possibly called “Mass Effect Keep.”
EA Says Old Console Cycles Were “Painful;” New One Better
At the Nasdaq 35th Investor Program Conference, Electronic Arts CFO Blake Jorgensen praised the mid-generation console refresh being carried out by Sony and Microsoft and condemned the old console cycles as “painful”.
The executive pointed out that in previous console cycles investors always tried to identify the peak earning period, seeing as moving from a generation to generation involved huge expenses to upgrade.
The fact that consoles were also highly customized didn’t help matters — each iteration of the Xbox and PlayStation were very different mainly as a result of being built on customized chipsets that were difficult to program for in the early years of their release.
And then there was the issue of compatibility between between cycles, which forced gamers to stop buying games for the older consoles…
According to Jorgensen, EA cut down the number of game engines from 25 to only two in a effort to control the high costs of developing for drastically different platforms, but games were still not compatible across generations.
The situation is of course different today, with both Microsoft and Sony releasing micro-upgrades more often, allowing for more compatibility of games with previous generations.
That’s to say the market now looks a lot more like a traditional PC market than the specialized console market of yore, which Jorgensen believes is “great for the industry, great for their [Sony and Microsoft’s] production, great for software costs, and great for the consumers.”
Consoles will still continue to get more powerful, making older software less appetizing, but “the whole notion that investors had of the cycle is gone away.”
What do you think about the new direction Microsoft and Sony are taking with this console generation? Was it long overdue? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
PSVR Will Sell 750K Units in 2017, Fewer Than Expected
One analyst that expected Sony to sell a around 2.6 million units of the PlayStation VR in 2016 now estimates that the company won’t even sell half of that.
Revised 2016 sales forecast for the PSVR by SuperData Research, a market research and analytics firm, reveals that Sony’s virtual reality headset will shift fewer than 750,000 units by the end of the year, a far cry from earlier estimates.
SuperData conceded to its overestimated of the PlayStation VR’s performance at retail, adjusting its forecast accordingly. Its report stated that “notably fewer [PSVR] units sold than expected due to a relatively fragmented title line-up and modest marketing effort.”
The company, however, remains confident that the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift will sell 420,108 and 355,088 units, respectively.
You can purchase SuperData’s full report and other industry insights on its website.
Did you or will you buy a PlayStation VR? Has it lived up to the hype? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
Is The PlayStation 4 Good For Casino Games?
When people think about the PlayStation 4, the first thing that usually comes to mind are big-name games like Uncharted and God of War. However, what few people know is that the console is also a gateway to many great and addictive gambling games.
While some games like The Four Kings Casino and Slots are apps, the fact that you can use your PS4 as an interface for the world wide web means you can also enjoy a plethora of browser-based titles without needing a PC, many of which can be found at betway casino.
Granted, the selection of such games will be smaller on the PS4 (or on any video game console, for that matter) than on a PC, especially when it comes to poker, but you will nevertheless have a lot to choose from.
Now, why would anyone want to gamble on the PS4 rather than on desktop or laptop, you might wonder? Well, the PS4 makes bragging to your friends about your exploits easier, thanks to the accessibility of social share buttons. When you play a great hand of poker or win a jackpot in slots, for instance, you can share images and/or video of the act a lot more easier than you can on a computer of any other type.
So, you now know that the PS4 can be used to play many different casino games, but does that mean you should? Social sharing aside, is gambling using the PS4 any fun? The short answer? Yes!
You will be surprised at how well gambling works on the platform, but it does take some getting used to. Video slots, for example, are as easy to play on a PS4 as they are on a desktop or laptop machine, while games like Blackjack and poker, where a single misclick can cost you big, don’t work quite as well but are still perfectly playable.
Have you played any casino games on the PlayStation 4? Would you recommend any?
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