Community Chronicle: 22/02/15

I’m back for another Chronicle after switching ISPs, therefore being without internet for a few crucial hours (but don’t worry, I survived!). As a result, Teflon was my knight in shining armor, and so here I am returning the favour…

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We began the week by learning that The Order: 1886 can be finished in under six hours. Unsurprisingly, this triggered a lot of discussion in the comments. Tony Cawley kicked things off saying “game length is irrelevant to game quality, as long as there’s replay value you can still get money’s worth from a short game,” although notes that adding in collectables is merely a cheap way of adding replay value.

Sharing a similar opinion, Youles said that as “long as the game is of good quality, the length really doesn’t bother me – I would rather the campaign was made how it was intended, and not stretched out by adding in some silly story just to make it longer. I actually welcome some shorter games, as it means I’ll have more time for other games.”

On the other side of the debate sat JustTaylorNow, who found the news so disappointing they cancelled their pre-order, reasoning that “considering it has no online what so ever it’s no excuse as to why it couldn’t be 10/12 hours long…  from the looks of the game, it doesn’t look like it has replayability & this is disgusting from Sony/Rad”. Kennykazey agrees, chipping in “If a game doesn’t have multiplayer, co-op or something else on the side, then I’d want it to be at least a dozen hours to feel like it’s worth the full price. If it’s less than that, then I think it should be priced accordingly.”

I think Kenny has hit the nail on the head with their ‘games being priced accordingly’ comment. It’s a difficult balance to get right, quality vs quantity, but getting the price right makes justifying a purchase a whole lot easier. For those of you that have bought the game, how have you been finding it? Can you ‘justify’ your £45-50 purchase, or will you be trading in as soon as you finish it to reclaim some of that money?


Lara Croft fans will probably not have missed the comments made by Noah Hughes, creative director for Rise of the Tomb Raider. He revealed that we’ll be seeing more of the optional tombs, and ones that contain more puzzles, in the upcoming sequel.

94jdh is clearly a fan of the older games, and hopes the new one will follow the old formula:

It needs to go back to its roots, where it was about unknown grand unexplored tombs. Walking into a vast cave/tomb where you could barely see the other side and the classical music score. It might have been quite linear and awkward in places but it kept you going back for more and was a sense of achievement when you completed the challenges.

Going ‘back to basics’ seems to be a desire from many of you who want additional tombs, and ones with greater difficulty puzzles compared to 2013’s reboot: “Well it would be hard to have less puzzles than the last one”, quipped colmshan1990, or there was JR. who thought “1+1=2 is more puzzling than the first game”.

Carrot381 was more positive though, saying they “enjoyed the last one but the tomb puzzles were quite simplistic with the solutions pretty much sign-posted anyway. Good fun though.”

Hopefully then, Hughes’ encouraging comments has given confidence to older fans that Crystal Dynamics are moving in the right direction, and we can look forward to it arriving later this year on Xbox and not too long after on other platforms.


At the end of the working week, we heard that Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai’s plans for increasing Sony’s profits may include selling off the mobile phone and TV divisions.

When I first read of this, I wondered how much of Sony there would be left, (incorrectly) believing the company was mostly made up of those two sections plus PlayStation with the Music and Movie sides of the business too. Luckily, blackarts pointed out Sony are also involved in “broadcast, medical, optical imaging, TVs, mobile, camera, other electronics, TV movies, music”, while Tuffcub added “they do a lot of non-commercial electronics which are in profit, and make parts for other companies”.

With this newfound knowledge, I then wondered why their mobile phones weren’t turning a profit, considering the comments were awash with praise, especially from the likes of Liam, wonkey-willy, camdaz and stueeeee, all proud Xperia Z-series owners. Kennykazey suggested “perhaps the reason their phones aren’t doing so well is because they spend shedloads on RnD and marketing for six new phones every six months! I bought a Z1 at launch and within less than a year there had been two successors and two or three compact versions in the same line”, which is something I think most phone manufacturers are guilty of!

It’s going to be an interesting few months for Sony then, the company is clearly going through a period of transition, and a stronger company will benefit gamers as Sony invest more in their profitable divisions such as PlayStation… so get buying those phones and TV’s!

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I mentioned in last week’s Chronicle that a lot of you were close to adding to your trophy cabinets, but it appears doug was one of just three to earn a Platinum this week! This time it was for Saints Row Gat of out Hell, and he also found time to finish off Infamous First Light too.

The other platinum, as you might be able to guess, went to Crazy_Del, who blitzed his way through The Order: 1886 to grab the trophy. Alongside them, flightx earnt himself the “broken” LittleBigPlanet 3 platinum, and his second ever.

That’s not to say the rest of you haven’t been busy, hornet1990 has finished off Driveclub’s tour with the free DLC,  and tactical20 completed Assassin’s Creed Freedom Cry.

A great number of you mentioned your continuing journeys in Destiny, while Dragon Age Inquisition, Dying Light, The Crew and Hustle Kings also received numerous mentions.


Normal service should resume next week, with Teflon back in charge of the Chronicle and myself on Round Up duty. Head over to page 2 for your leaderboard update, or use the submission form below if you want to contribute something for next week.

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20 Comments

  1. I hate the argument that perceived “quantity” should result in a cheaper game, almost a “pay per hour” approach. The reason I hate it is because people only use this argument to complain about wanting games cheaper.
    Come speak to me when you’re not being hypocritical and are offering to pay £200 for the standard edition of Skyrim or Oblivion because both of those games offer well over 100 hours of content. Or when you’re prepared to pay hundreds for Titanfall or Evolve or CoD because they’re primarily online focussed therefore, in theory, offer infinite game time.
    The whole argument “game x is too short so not worth price y, it should be a lower price z” is an argument I’ll only start taking seriously when those same people start offering to pay more for games that offer a greater volume of gameplay against their de-facto standard. The same baseline should apply if you’re going to make the argument for one.
    If if doesn’t provide you with sufficient perceived value then just don’t get it. Don’t act like an entitled brat and demand it cheaper because you actually DO want it, just at a lower price. That’s the price, accept it or wait until it’s at an acceptable lower price, which happens very quickly with new releases nowadays anyway.
    People want their cake and they want to eat it nowadays. God forbid the outcry if publishers gave em what they wanted … and massively upped the price of games with extended playtime. I’dhave a right laugh if the next Mass Effect came out at £150 or so because “it contains over 100 hours of gameplay and gamers have been asking to pay for games based in game quantity”

    • I think you’re painting people with same brush. A few years ago I had to evaluate how much play time I got out of a game because I only had so much to spend and being a heavy gamer it was partly a matter of how many gameplay hours I would get. Even now, I rarely buy games on release simply because my finances don’t really permit it.

      I don’t think we should be saying how games should be i.e. quantity, number of hours, but realistically when a £50 6-hour game like The Order releases, and there are other games out there cheaper and with more gameplay, there’s no way I’m going to touch The Order until a later date. The developers should be free to do what they want, and there’s nothing wrong with a 6 hour game, but some people won’t buy into it because they only have so much money for a given time.

      • But that’s exactly what Scythegdp said, if you don’t think it’s worth it, don’t buy it.

        I think he has issue with people telling a developer that they should make a game X amount of hours long.

        I do wonder if the technology involved in making The Order was so advanced, it inflated development costs to the same amount as a longer game. Hopefully, like all other technology this gets cheaper with time.

        Oh, and on topic with the article, I got 2 plats this week, The Order, and Far Cry 4.

      • And I think your attitude is the correct one.
        My view is, if you’re not prepared to pay the current asking price then instead of whining about it “not being value for money” which is basically just saying “I want it cheaper” whilst trying not to sound entitled, just wait for it to drop to a price you do consider acceptable.
        Don’t whine about “quantity vs price” when the game is more than you want to pay if you’re not prepared to accept the other side of that coin (more for games with greater content).
        If you don’t feel something is value for money, it’s your choice to not get it. And you have every right to make that choice. However when you whine that you want it cheaper, then you’re just sounding entitled. The price is what the price is, if you’re not prepared to pay said price for said item then don’t get the item. And wait for it to drop to an acceptable price. The people whining about “quantity vs price” are people who want it NOW for a price it’s going to be LATER. Sorry, but that’s not how things work with any product. And be careful what you wish for, I guarantee nobody would like a “price vs quantity” world of gaming.

        It’s the same with almost everything. Take clothing, some people bitch about Abercrombie jackets being £200 plus. But, if you wait for the sales you can get them for £80. Problem is people want them NOW for the sale price. Sorry, that’s not how things work. If you feel £200 is worth it, get it now. If you don’t, wait for the sale. Simple, as. Difference being with clothing you take a risk (will your size be available in the sale?), that risk doesn’t exist with games. So if you don’t feel £50 is worth a game, don’t get it at launch. Wait for the inevitable price drop. It’s not rocket science.
        But no, modern entitled games want to whine about how “it’s not worth £50 at launch” but, at the same time, want to play it at launch.

    • Personally I hope The Order 1886 bombs. I don’t want devs thinking £50 for a 5 hour game is fine. If you’re happy to pay that then that’s great but I hope it doesn’t become the norm.

      • So you played it then have you?
        I have, I’ve platinumed it. And my first play through was well above 5 hours (8-9 hours). Then again I wasn’t trying to rush through it as fast as possible on the easiest difficulty to prove a point.
        On the other hand I beat MGS4 in under 3 hours on extreme to get the Big Boss Extreme emblem (twice, pre and post trophies).
        By the time I was done with TLoU on both PS3 and PS4 I wa getting through it in well under 5 hours as well.
        So pity those games didn’t bomb …

        At least your dream of short games bombing came true for Ryse, we’ll have to wait and see on The Order.
        And I hope Remedy are playing close attention to the criticisms levelled towards this game as well (if it’s judged to the same standards) because all information to date has put Quantum Break firmly is the same camp. Then again I do hope for the best as Alan Wake was top of my “criminally under appreciated” games of last gen.

      • TSA’s review stated 7 hours taking it at a normal pace. That’s basically a couple of evenings/afternoons. Not acceptable for full price. I didn’t play Ryse but it has multiplayer so there’s plenty of playability after finishing the story.

      • That’s another thing I don’t really get. Multiplayer =\= replay ability in my view.
        I just don’t see why, for example, The Order would suddenly become a “more worthwhile game” if it had a tacked on multiplayer. Games like the Tomb Raider reboot had godawful tacked on multiplayer and I’ve yet to meet someone who enjoyed it. Now granted the sp was superb but, if the sp was rubbish would the mp have made the game “worth more”?
        I don’t think so at all.

        What that propagates, in my view, is the even worse trend of devs moving resources over to a tacked on MP because it makes games “worth more”.
        One of the worst tends of recent years IMO is games with no need for MP suddenly having MP because it’s “expected”. I’ve lost count of the number of games with useless MP just there because “games should have MP as it makes them “replayable”” even though the online is dead within a week of launch.

        Although I did say a while ago, and still maintain, that I don’t understand why they didn’t have MP or co-op in this game. The play-style is just built for translation into online gaming! And the amount of time spent in-game with another AI team member … it’s killzone all over again (spend the game playing with a squad, why the hell can’t at least one of those squad mates be an actual mate!).

      • Well I wouldn’t hope that any game doesn’t do well, after all the game is made by people trying to do a job and be creative. I get your drift about the norm for number of hours in a game, but I think, for the most part, devs will continue to do what they can/want.

      • That’s another thing I don’t really get. Multiplayer =\= replay ability in my view.
        I just don’t see why, for example, The Order would suddenly become a “more worthwhile game” if it had a tacked on multiplayer. Games like the Tomb Raider reboot had godawful tacked on multiplayer and I’ve yet to meet someone who enjoyed it. Now granted the sp was superb but, if the sp was rubbish would the mp have made the game “worth more”?
        I don’t think so at all.

        What that propagates, in my view, is the even worse trend of devs moving resources over to a tacked on MP because it makes games “worth more”.
        One of the worst tends of recent years IMO is games with no need for MP suddenly having MP because it’s “expected”. I’ve lost count of the number of games with useless MP just there because “games should have MP as it makes them “replayable”” even though the online is dead within a week of launch.

        Although I did say a while ago, and still maintain, that I don’t understand why they didn’t have MP or co-op in this game. The play-style is just built for translation into online gaming! And the amount of time spent in-game with another AI team member … it’s killzone all over again (spend the game playing with a squad, why the hell can’t at least one of those squad mates be an actual mate!).

        And what is the game length then? Took me 8-9 hours, review said 7, but your first post stated “£50 for a 5 hour game”. So which is it then, 5 hours per your first post or 7 per your second? Which is amusing since I HAVE played it and it took ME 8-9 hours (different players, different play styles). So, considering you’ve not even played the game you don’t really have a leg to stand on in this game length discussion seeing as only 1 of us has actually played (and completed) the game.
        It took me about the same length of time to compete Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite. Suppose theose games were not acceptable at full price either then? Come to think of it, took me about the same amount of time to complete Alan Wake.
        Coming from someone who has the platinums for all 3 of the abovementioned games (i.e. someone who has personal experience with all of them, to the point of completion) and full gamerscore for the 4th.
        So tell me, who’s in a better position to compare game length here? The person who has played all of them to only some of them?

      • Radha was up with that? Posted my post halfway through writing the post but still let me carry on writing it? Bizarre!

      • Agree with a lot of what Scythegpd has said.

        As for Starman – you should be ashamed of yourself hoping it bombs, then we’ll never get any devs taking risks and trying new things! :p

        And this 5 hours playing time is nonsense (and was speed run), I could complete every CoD within 5 hours if I stuck it on easy and run through it! Same applies to a number of games in my collection, some of which aren’t nearly as polished as The Order. If people don’t feel like the games’ length is worthy of the price, don’t buy it, or wait for a price drop, but don’t slate the game because of it.

      • “Personally I hope The Order 1886 bombs”. What a ridiculous thing to say.

        I think we all know that the 5hr thing is a speed run and the fact you’ve probably not played the game makes it an even more absurd statement. It’s obvious that a hell of a lot of hard work has gone into that game and really doesn’t deserve that kind of negativity.
        I’m thoroughly enjoying my play-through which has been at least 8hrs so far, the gameplay seems pretty solid to me and the visuals are truly ground breaking which helps set a new standard for this gen but you wish it bombs.

        Bad Starman!!! ;)

        Comparing review scores to the everyday people/gamers opinions who are actually playing the game yet again tells a different story. Ignoring the online issues, it’s like DriveClub all over again… A majority of reviews are negative but the majority of gamers views are positive and full of praise.

  2. Wow – that’s a lot of hate right there ;)

  3. I’ve almost got the platinum in Alien Isolation, as my 10th. Funnily enough, the only trophy I still didn’t get is for being killed by the beast a hundred times. Did run into survivors mode already about 30 times, and it still didn’t pop, I must have dreaded this creature almost too much during my playthroughs… :o)

    • Ok, got it now, after going through a quick series of horrible deaths…
      So, let me officially declare that Alien: Isolation is the most awesome game I’ve ever played. This is, of course, highly subjective, but being an Alien fan since the early 80s, I’ve enjoyed it so much, I find it hard to describe. Sevastopol became my second home, I had a hell of a ride there. Just W-O-W, that’s what gaming should be like.
      Ripley, signing off.

  4. I bought my first Sony phone on Saturday Xperia Z2 and it’s one of the best pieces of kit i’ve ever owned.So impressed with the Sony brand that i think i’ll get one of their tv’s next.

    • If you do buy a Sony TV, keep an eye out for support for the mirror functionality of your new phone. So you can wirelessly view content without needing a Chromecast or similar thingy. Should be rather useful.

      • Funny you should say that,i was saying to the Mrs that i can just flick photo’s and what have you and they just appear on the TV screen.It sounds great.

  5. Oh my, I’m going to silly aren’t I? I just bought The Order, digitally…. :-o

    I actually told myself “this is madness” when confirming the purchase.

    So why? A fear of spoilers and a moment of weakness while bored. It’ll be interesting to see where I stand after playing it. Curiosity killed the cat, I suppose.

    I believe if I can find enjoyment in it, then that’s more important than length and content. My most regretful purchases include Battlefield 3 Premium and Need for Speed Rivals, as I didn’t enjoy the games.

    I still stand by my opinion of The Order being overpriced, I believe games in general are. And I think price should play a part in reviews and opinions, perhaps not affect the score too much but certainly be given an important mention. We use prices to gauge value of most things, so why not videogames?

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