We Discuss Every Game Announced at Sony's PS5 Event

We have a truly five star runtime today! Special guest Patrick Klepek joins Austin, Gita, Rob, and Cado to go over the PS5 reveal event, discussing each game shown, picking our favorites, and firing Patrick for besmirching an Arkane game. After the break, Rob and Patrick lead Austin and Cado through their time with The Last of Us II, a game who’s repeated use of extreme violence seems to amount to little by the end of its runtime. You can listen to the full episode below


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/4ayx7d/we-discuss-every-game-announced-at-sony-ps5-event-waypoint-radio
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I love the waypoint crew for being leftish voices in gaming but listening to them discuss the PS5 reveal it couldn’t be more obvious our tastes in games are very, very different.

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There have been some left voices on Twitter that are like “The Last Of Us Part II is a terrible game made by terrible people and you are a terrible person if you enjoy it,” so I appreciate the Waypoint crew for being more thoughtful about their approach to things.

Plus, they are more the Stray kind of audience than the Horizon kind of audience. And that’s okay! A critical eye is a good thing to develop, but sometimes you gotta like what you like.

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In fact the more I listen to this (just the PS5 part) the more this is a weirdly bad vibes episode.

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I agree, got about forty minutes in before I took a break. I think there might be something to be said for expecting folks to get excited about something like the PS5 during the current climate. I think I’ll skip past the PS5 talk and get into the Last of Us 2 stuff. Still curious to here some more talk on after reading robs Review, which ruled.

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I certainly got excited talking about the PS5. And then the TLOU2 discourse kicked off and I forgot what joy feels like.

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On the Demon’s Souls topic, I just have to say that Bluepoint has become one of the most disappointing and disrespectful studios (aside from devs that make wildly inappropriate/sexist/racist/etc games) in my eyes.

I can’t put into words how much I despise the Shadow of the Colossus remake, and now this Demon’s Souls remake looks even worse. Neither of them really capture the essence or vibe of the originals, because of course those art styles and gameplay choices are “outdated.” It was bad enough with SotC, but in this DeS trailer they seem to be going for maximum hype, the once understated OST has been AMPLIFIED to get the blood pumping, the practical and utilitarian design of Boletaria is now excessively ornate and overly lush, the color-grading has almost entirely been removed or reworked to be more realistic or hype.

And yet this is supposed to be Demon’s Souls, it’s supposed to be the same game, it’s supposed to “capture the spirit” of DeS, it’s supposed to allow those who haven’t played DeS to now “relive the classic, BUT BETTER!” It’s the excact same issue I had with SotC remake, it’s just so sad that gamers and critics alike buy into this ridiculous narrative.

THIS IS NOT DEMON’S SOULS, this is not the same game that Fromsoft made in 2009, this isn’t even a port. You might be wondering, why is that a problem? If it’s mostly the same fundamental gameplay (even though I’m sure most are clamoring for gameplay “updates”) and the remade graphics mostly capture the same/similar vibe, then isn’t it all just as well the same as playing DeS on PS3?

NO, it’s absolutely not the same. There are clear graphical/art direction changes already, and as I said, I’m sure they’ll “update” some gameplay systems, or have minor touch-ups to the existing framework. That’s not okay, that’s not preservation, that’s not Demon’s Souls. It is, just like SotC remake before it, this weird middle ground of being Bluepoint’s game while also trying to be “as faithful to the source material as possible.”

And most importantly, the true reason that isn’t Demon’s Souls, the reason I find the notion of these sort of remake so disrespectful, is because the game players will consume in 2021 will be made by an entirely different group of people. What I mean to say is, when you play Demon’s Souls on the PS3, or emulate the PS3 rom, you’re playing the game that the artists and designers at Fromsoft envisioned, warts and all. You’re experiencing their art, their creative vision, you’re in direct communication with the original creators through that game. However, when you play DeS remake, you’re not experiencing the work of the original creators or their vision, you’re experiencing a game made by american that’s trying to be “a better version” of another game they didn’t originally create.

The thing that frustrates me the most is people saying “ah, I never played Demon’s Souls on PS3, but now with this remake I’ll be able to.” Like I said, you’re not playing Demon’s Souls, you’re not in direct communication with the original creator, you’re not experiencing their original vision. You’re playing a knock-off remake that’s trying to be a more hype version of what artists already created, you’re playing a deception. And yet so many pretend that they’re playing Demon’s Souls now, as if they now know what it means to have played it.

I should clarify, I’m not mad at the casual players that don’t consider this sort of stuff. I’m mad at the Capital “G” Gamers and games critics for not seeing an issue with this sort of remake. I’m not sure I’d call it erasure of history per se, but it’s adjacent, and this discussion is important to the fuller understanding and respect for the medium.

End rant.

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IO has confirmed that progress from 2 will carry over into 3, I assume this means that unlocks will be available from the start. Playing each level once then going back to dig deeper into them is how I played the pre-2016 games so 2 was more of a return to form for me.

Remember when you were younger and you would try to act coy by dropping hints all the time about how amazing something is and why it would be a really good purchase because you really wanted it?

I get those flashbacks now every time there’s an ad on Waypoint and Cyber. Sometimes the flashbacks are back to back and I remember having to drop even harder hints after getting Fairly Odd Parents the video game instead of Jax and Daxter.

The Demon’s Souls remake reveal was so disappointing for me. It looks almost nothing like the original game. I honestly had no idea what game the trailer was for until the dragon showed up, and I played The PS3 game earlier this year! It really sucks, because I never experienced the game while the online features were active, so I was excited to get a chance to experience them. I’m honestly really bummed about this whole situation.

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The original Shadow of Colossus and Demon’s Souls still exist. People can still play them. I’m pretty sure they’re both on PS Now, not to mention emulators somewhere.

Now someone has made slightly different versions of those videogames. The people who play the new versions will have a slightly different experience than the people who played the originals. That’s okay.

Edit: @notanimal I can understand being bummed but, honestly, the way to play Demon’s Souls was offline unless you were specifically looking for PvP. Playing online made it almost impossible to manipulate your world tendency to get rare drops, because if you were playing online, your world tendency was affected by the aggregate of everyone playing, inevitably drawing it back to neutral. If you still have access to it, you should absolutely play it offline.

I did play it offline for the first time a few months ago! I guess the part that seemed cool to me about playing online was that the world tendency would be out of your control. I’ve heard that around launch the whole system was a lot more volatile, which sounds cool! For me the ugliness and jankiness are core to what makes the original special. Maybe the community will put up a server like they did a couple years ago and I can experience it then.

I have no problem with the remake existing! Demon’s Souls is a really cool game that a lot of people didn’t get a chance to play! I think the folks at Bluepoint are good at what they do too. The Shadow of the Colossus remake captured a lot of what made the original special imho. It still feels weird that these remakes will be the defacto best way to play these games.

I was really surprised with how down they all were about it. I thought most of the games previewed were really cool with a wide variety of art styles and gameplay. There was also a noticeable lack of grim military FPS’s and worn out yearly franchises (besides 2K). I get it, I’m having difficulty being cheery about anything right now but Arkane made a Saul Bass style trailer, that’s fucking Waypoint catnip. And also Bugsnax.

I really appreciate they way they actively talk about current events but I don’t think it’s reasonable to expect this event, and especially the games shown, to be responsive to the current protests. Games, especially development, does not work on that timescale. Likely all these trailers were cut and the interstitials filmed before the protests even began. It was only a couple weeks ago that the discourse was about cheery games to keep your spirits up while everyone was locked down.

And again, Bugsnax

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I got uh, up to that bad looking dinosaur furry game before stopped watching the stream because, god, none of the games they were showing looked anything better than “might be fine”, and certainly nothing that seemed to justify this apparently mind-blowingly expensive console. If it hadn’t been a console reveal stream maybe I’d have come out hotter on some of the games but uh, jeez.

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Fun fact: my wife once left me stranded in France for four days so she could get home for a Pure Black World Tendency event. We were on different flights because my ticket was through work. There was a hurricane hitting the east coast of the US and her flight hit the cutoff and mine didn’t. She didn’t even hesitate.

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The thing that Sony seems to have obscured in the stream is that a lot of these games are probably multi platform and/or cross gen. The new toy is nice, but will be highly unnecessary for all but a handful of titles. Honestly, the one common denominator between Microsoft and Sony’s presentations is that your current hardware is going to be just fine for the next few years of gaming.

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I can understand the kind of jaded negative vibe of this podcast. Imagine if you had to watch every trailer for every blockbuster movie in like 90 minutes. Like even if you like the MCU and Fast & Furious, it is all going to blend together into a mush after awhile.

I was thinking this too after Xbox’s thing last month but watching trailers in this shotgun fashion is a bit… dispiriting? It just makes the entire industry look bland. I had to ask: “is gaming boring?”

Every trailer is edited the same “Smash-your-face in with all the frenetic crazy” action way and too many of them had the same SciFi nonsense aesthetic.

I don’t get why they were so harsh to Volcano High tho.

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Regardless of some weird/uncomfortable things the director (edit; writer) of the game did, the harshness towards Volcano High is disappointing and expected. It’s a vibrant and cool look that we don’t see in gaming or even animated TV. But it’s distinctly the type of art that you see in furry communities, and I think there’s still latent discomfort about that from people who aren’t part of it.

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As I’ve told folks, it’s been a banner year for our furry comrades.

I mean, also the Writer did write an article about how she watched some animated child porn and posted it on Kotaku soooooo.

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