Tonight I was joking with a buddy that I should count my adventures of doing my taxes as my game played tonight. While I wish I could justify that stretch of the term "game," I did play another game tonight.
Bentley's Hackpack is a mini-game collection of the old-school style mini games found in the newest Sly Cooper game (which I wrote about last night). I had mentioned how even the hacking game in Sly 4 was significantly upgraded, and how much I enjoyed playing it. Well, the developers anticipated lots of people enjoying those games, along with others, to the point where they released a stand-alone DLC via the Playstation Network, which, like Sly 4, features a cross-buy feature, allowing you to buy one version and get the other one free. Not sure if it comes with double trophies also, but I'm hoping so! Even if not, there are still a handful of trophies to hunt down, and for only $3, it's a hell of a deal.
I like the idea of stand-alone DLC like this, where you don't have to be playing the main game to play the DLC. Why don't more people do this?
Anyway, that's all for tonight. Taxes kicked my ass tonight and I'm wiped clean of mental fortitude. Good game, IRS...
Well, you can cross another game off my list of what I am most excited to play this year. Today, Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time was released to little fan fare, mainly because a little game called Dead Space 3 came out as well. Why am I not excited about Dead Space 3? For the same reasons I talked about last night with Borderlands. I haven't played any of the games in the series, and until I do, I don't foresee myself getting into the third ... just yet.
So instead of the game everyone else is playing today, I opted for the fourth installment of the long-dormant Sly Cooper franchise. I worked my way through the first three games over the last couple of months, obtaining the Platinum trophy in all of them, and because those games were so, so good, I couldn't wait to get my hands on this new game.
For one, this is the first one made for the PS3. That's crazy to think about, right? Sly Cooper 3 was released in 2005 for the PS2, and of course was later released for the PS3 as part of the Sly Cooper Collection. Also, this is the first Sly Cooper game not to be developed by the Sucker Punch studio, who moved on to the infamous InFamous franchise for the PS3. All these uncertainties, topped off by the fact that Sony not only refused to market this game in any way, but also gave it a price drop before the game came out (to $39.99), would be enough for me to be very cautious about what I would be getting into.
I didn't sweat it, though. It's a Sly Cooper game. How could they possibly screw up a Sly Cooper game? Well...
They didn't. They nailed it. Maybe an hour into the game, and I already know this is by far the best Sly Cooper game to date. The graphics are beautiful, the voice acting/dialogue/writing is spot on and memorable, the story is fascinating in only a way Sly Cooper could make it, and the updates to the familiar game play are outstanding. Even the little things like upgrading the "hacking" mini-game that Bentley uses to hack computer systems looks amazing. So amazing, my seven year old noticed how much better it looked. Also, the new look of the coins and treasures are perfectly designed.
Scanning through the trophy list makes me excited to see how much time I will need to put into this game to get the Platinum trophy, but if the rest of the game is anything like the beginning, then I will be in for a treat.
Another awesome thing I haven't even mentioned yet is the Cross-Buy promotion for this game. In buying the PS3 version of the game, you also get the Vita version absolutely free. Better yet, you can cross-save, so anything you do in the game on one console, you can snag the save file and play it from that save point on the other console, and vise versa. Also ... double trophies. Yeah, you heard me right. Get a trophy in one version of the game, it automatically pops for the other version. Can't complain with double trophies ... ever.
Also, apparently you can use the Vita in some way while playing the PS3 version, as a scanner of some sorts, but I haven't even bothered to look into that. The more time I waste fooling around with downloads and what not, the less time I spend playing this game.
The only bad thing I have to say about this, so far, is that it is definitely taking gaming time away from other games I am working on or thinking about playing, like DmC. And with a steady stream of top-notch games about to come down the pipe, my backlog is in serious jeopardy of getting congested. Since when did having too many good games to play become a problem? Just wait until the summer time, when everyone is starting to brace for the next round of new consoles. No one will be complaining about having a backlog then.
Well, at least until GTA V comes out in September.
For today's game, I worked a bit on Sly 3: Honor Among Thieves. This is a game I have been plugging away at for a little while now, playing in short increments at a time, trying to get the Platinum trophy for it. I got the Platinum for Sly Cooper last year, and then when Sly 4: Thieves in Time was announced for the PS3 and PS Vita (cross-buy!), I got really excited about the series again and decided to go back and finish 2 and 3, thanks to the wonderful Sly Cooper Collection released back in 2010.
Playing this game, it makes me really excited for what the next game will bring to the table. While I was bummed that they ditched the clue bottles to collect throughout the game, the addition of all the types of new game play (RC car racing, plane dogfights, etc.) helped make the game special and feel unique, not just a rehashing of the older games.
Tonight I was playing chapter 4, where Bentley recruits Panda King (from Sly 1) to join the group. I really enjoy playing as more than the main 3 characters, and I really like the fact that the new characters offer different types of attacks and game play mechanics as well. And the part when you got to play as Carmalita and had to "attack" Sly, but in reality was unknowingly charging the battery? That was fantastically clever.
The Sly games have always offered really good story telling, and this game is no different. In fact, it may even be the best story of the 3, with all the different stories intertwined, from Penelope being the Black Baron, and Panda King fighting his internal self while trying to rescue his daughter. Another thing, while probably overlooked by many, is the fact that Bentley is now in a wheel chair due to the accident he had at the end of the last game. In the genre of platformers, and "cartoonish" games, it's really refreshing to see them actually implement story elements from one game to the next.
This game is really making me excited for the next installment. Not only is the "cross-buy" feature that Sony has implemented in some recent games an amazing feature for owners of both systems, the promise of being able to use the Vita for in-game features when playing on the PS3 is looking to be a rad bonus. Can't wait, plain and simple.
Now if you excuse me, I have some more pockets to loot.
My Year of Gaming – Project Stats
Games played: 3
Systems played on: NES = 1, PS Vita = 1, PS3 = 1
Total time played: 6 hours
XBLA = The Noyse
PSN = the_noyse
NNID = The Noyse
3DS F.C. = 3007-8109-2329
STEAM = TheNoyse
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Games played for project : 365