PlayStation 4 20th Anniversary Edition Revealed


It’s been 20 years since the launch of the original PlayStation, which released in Japan on 3 December 1994. Sony wanted to celebrate this moment together with this big piece of news to reveal: a very special 20th Anniversary Edition PS4!

Sporting the same ‘Original Grey’ finish as the original PlayStation and packaged in a commemorative box, PlayStation 4 20th Anniversary Edition will be priced at €499 and limited to 12,300 units worldwide, reflecting the launch date of the original PlayStation.

Given this very limited production run, the 20th Anniversary Edition will not be available via traditional retail channels. Look out for more information soon on how you can get your hands on one of these highly collectable consoles. In the meantime, check out the 20th Anniversary PS4, PS3 and PS Vita Themes, live now in Playstation Store for free.

There are also some pictures of this beauty for the fans to enjoy:

Playstation420thAnniversary_1 Playstation420thAnniversary_2 Playstation420thAnniversary_3 Playstation420thAnniversary_4 Playstation420thAnniversary_5 Playstation420thAnniversary_6

New Bloodborne Screenshots and Details Released


PlayStation Blog Europe today released a number of new screenshots of Bloodborne, From Software’s PlayStation 4 exclusive title, and a few tidbits of new information about the game. The game’s setting does indeed seem to be confined to the city of Yharnam, and while there will be variety in the locations we explore, it doesn’t look as though it will be on the same level as Demons or the Dark Souls series. This will provide perhaps a more cohesive experience for players, but I’m a little worried that there may not be enough darkness. Obviously, I’m joking.

15214513473_5934dc5b63_h 15213968804_c59ae43f8a_h

We first see new environments from the game, such as the cemetery seen previously, and a new interior area looking reminiscent of more dilapidated Duke’s Archive. Further on, we meet some new characters:

15832062521_a84535da34_h

First, a witch living in the cemetery that is apparently obsessed with stealing other peoples eyes and attaching them to herself.

15833931105_4e307fc216_h

Second, a missing hunter who ventured into particularly bad area of Yarnham and didn’t return, who sports a minigun. Since, in previous Souls games, you have been able to use the weapons of your enemies, I think it’s safe to say that we will be able to use this bad boy. This wasn’t the only new weapon announced, however, as the next screens show a cane that transforms into a whip to attack enemies.

15214512813_d78a4bebcc_h   15832062801_65756eda75_h

15648511048_ea35b09e76_h

This final screen shows a previously unseen part of Yarnham, locked deep below the city streets, which will apparently appear differently for each hunter. Is there a randomised dungeon in Bloodborne? Did From just confirm infinite replayability?

We’ll have to wait until March 2015 to find out.

Adventure Time: The Secret of the Nameless Kingdom Set for Sony’s PlayStation TV


Shmow-zow! Little Orbit was happy to announce the upcoming Adventure Time: The Secret of the Nameless Kingdom will be launching on PlayStation TV. Developed by veteran game studio WayForward and under license from Cartoon Network, the highly-anticipated game fuses classic top-down action adventure with puzzle-solving fun to create an all-new experience for the franchise, reminiscent of early high-fantasy console games. The PSTV version of the game will be available exclusively for download on the PlayStation Network starting from 18 November.

Matt Scott, CEO of Little Orbit, has stated:

We’re absolutely thrilled that Secret of the Nameless Kingdom is one of Sony’s premiere PSTV titles. We’re pleased to be partnering with Sony and have our game featured in their new PlayStation TV advertising campaign. The PSTV is a perfect fit for our game because it enables the entire family to play together to unravel all the secrets of the Nameless Kingdom.

Adventure Time: The Secret of the Nameless Kingdom is a brand new, top-down action adventure game where fans will take on the role of Finn (the human); alongside his best bro Jake (the shape-shifting dog). The duo will vanquish new and familiar foes as they battle their way through a vast overworld and mysterious temples. Players will encounter new and familiar Adventure Time characters, discover hidden secrets, solve puzzles and overcome challenges to rescue all the missing princesses of the Nameless Kingdom.

Fans are being treated to a variety of treats including screen shots, character news tidbits and more with more to come prior to the game’s launch in the coming week. Adventure Time: The Secret of the Nameless Kingdom is planned to launch on 21 November 2014 for the PS3, Xbox 360 and 3DS in Europe and Australasia.

FinnBanana2 FinnBananaKnights FinnGrassSword2 LullabyHide NightmareP SP2 SPJakeFinn

OXCGN Visits Playfest – PlaystationTV Unboxing and Review


On Thursday 6th November, I attended Sony’s ‘Playfest 2014’ event in Sydney to represent OXCGN. As attendees we had free access to all of Playstation’s EB Games Expo line-up including:

  • Driveclub
  • Little Big Planet 3
  • Singstar Ultimate Party
  • Until Dawn
  • Bloodborne
  • The Order
  • FIFA 15
  • Minecraft PS4 Edition

I would give my impressions of each of these, having missed my chance to experience these titles at EB Expo, but the main star of the show was Playstation TV. A small box designed for streaming your PS4 games, services, and PSVita titles from one screen to another. Family wants the TV back but you are stuck mid level with no chance to save and play later? Pause it, go to the room with your PSTV, and pick up exactly where you left off.

PSTV_Black_AngleA

If you eye the video above, you will see just how small the unit is. It is inconvenient for the obsessive compulsive, as the numerous cords constantly have the tiny box sitting at odd angles and lifting up from the table. But for its purpose, which would often find people moving to rooms that the main console wouldn’t fit in to begin with; it is the perfect little device.

In addition to allowing you to stream your gameplay from one screen to another, the PSTV will stream any other media of music/tv streaming service. As announced at Playfest, TV network Prime7 will make its debut on PS4 with 7Plus. The unit allows you to stream all your PlaystationStore-bought movies and tv shows as well, so you can enjoy them away from the console.

PSVITA_PCH 2000_Front

The PSTV also allows you to “supersize” your PSVita games. The PSTV allows you to play a variety of compatible Vita, PSP, and PSOne games on your HDTV. You did hear me right; they do have to be compatible with PSTV, although Sony insists that there is a more than extensive lineup. At the press event I was able to try out Crash Bandicoot on a 70-inch screen, and the scaling was almost undetectable. Half expecting a stretched and distorted image, I was pleased to see it play as if it were designed for the huge screen from the beginning.

As for my home-test of the PSTV, it was pleasant. At the event, the staff insisted heavily that if available, that you should use a wired connection between your consoles and if not available, to make it available. This made me wary of even considering a wireless connection, but on a relatively stable wi-fi network, each game I tried (Knack, AC: Black Flag, and Destiny) played relatively smoothly. I tried simultaneously streaming a video and loading some pages on a computer on the same network, and I did experience some stuttering. Home alone with other devices off the network, wireless proved a viable option. But with others in the house using the wi-fi, it seemed a better bet to use a wired connection.

PSTV_Black_Rear

Overall the PSTV is a viable and convenient alternative to purchasing a second console, or for allowing play in a space that the full console wouldn’t otherwise fit. The wireless connection can falter relatively easily, but stay off the network and you’re golden. Short of rewiring your house or buying a second console, the PSTV is definitely something to consider, especially when it gives you the chance to blow up your Vita games to extreme proportions smoothly and cleanly.

Personally, it’ll finally make playing games in another room when I’m too lazy to move the console a possibility. That’s an A+ in my books.

PlayStation 4 Owners Get a Weekend of Free Access to PlayStation Plus


Sony Computer Entertainment Australia has today announced an unmissable offer for gamers that will see free access to the online multiplayer features of PlayStation Plus for all PlayStation 4 users for a full weekend starting from 26 September at 17:00 AEST until 29 September at 17:00 AEST. This incredible offer will be open to all PS4 owners and with no sign up required, there really are no excuses not to get involved. Take your game to the next level and experience exceptional multiplayer action for this limited opportunity as you battle it out with seasoned pros across the globe. The PS Plus service offers its members extraordinary value by providing a series of added features to PSN including online multi play with fans the world over.

As well as this fantastic PS4 online multiplayer access, PS Plus members can download two PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita titles per month that are theirs to play for as long as they are a member, enjoy exclusive PlayStation Store discounts and get exclusive access to cloud storage and more, all from as little as $9.95 per month. To save even more, users have the option of paying $19.95 for three months, or $69.95 for a year’s subscription.

Adventure That was Held in Your Hands is Now Re-Imagined Inside Your TV


The original Tearaway was a little papery world that was held entirely in your hands, using all the features of the PlayStation Vita to bring players a great experience that was as life like and immersive as possible. The developer Media Molecule will be rebuilding the game from the ground up to take advantage of the enhanced power of the PlayStation 4 and the unique features of the DualShock 4 controller, with new fourth-wall-busting interactions and a bigger, more beautiful world to explore.

In this great adventure you can choose either Atoi or Iota to guide, each a bold courier with an expressive personality and a unique message for you locked away inside their envelope head. In order to read it though, they’re going to need your help to deliver it! Tearaway Unfolded will have the following key features:

  • Immersive PlayStation 4 Controls – Rebuilt from the ground up to take full advantage of the PlayStation 4 and the DualShock 4, Tearaway Unfolded uses the full range of inputs to deliver an immersive and unique gameplay experience.
  • Platforming! – Above all else Tearaway Unfolded is a platform adventure game and Media Molecule have taken the experiences from making the award-winning LittleBigPlanet series and applied them to a vibrant, living 3D world.
  • Paper Engine with Real World Physics – Tearaway Unfolded’s exclusive game engine creates a 3D animated world from sheets of paper to capture the real physics of paper material that will tear, fold, or crumple, especially when the player reaches out and interacts with the world.
  • Story Time – Tearaway Unfolded is comprised of three short stories, which intertwine into one larger narrative, through which the player and their messenger friend are guided by two (mostly) wise and playful characters, the Green Man and the Fortune Teller, on their quest to hear new tales.
  • Two worlds collide – Tearaway Unfolded is a living papery world inside the player’s TV, and constantly breaks the fourth wall to deliver a unique game experience. Tearaway Unfolded is an experience like no other; a game that knows the player exists, and integrates them fully into the story.
  • Print & Create Papercraft – As they play through the game, players will be rewarded with real papercraft plans of the creatures, objects and characters from the game to print out and construct, bringing the world of Tearaway to life in their own homes. There are over 60 models to collect, each with colored in and blank versions, giving players the opportunity to get really creative, and adding many hours of fun to the Tearaway experience!
  • Share Favorite Gameplay Moments – Players are encouraged to share special gameplay moments via social networks, using your messenger’s in-game camera to take photos of their adventures, with collectable filters and lenses allowing them to add their own creative spin.
  • Tearaway community site – Tearaway.me gives players access to their papercraft collection, and all the in-game photos they’ve shared, along with the photos taken by the rest of the Tearaway community, either from their own adventures, or of their papercraft models.
  • Unique Experience for Every Player – From unlocking the unique message inside their messenger’s head, to decorating things along their journey and customizing how their messenger appears inside the game, Tearaway delivers a truly personalized gameplay experience.

They have also released stunning new screenshots for everyone to enjoy.

Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 11 Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 10 Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 9 Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 8 Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 7 Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 6 Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 5 Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 4 Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 3 Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 2 Tearaway Unfolded PS4 Screenshot 1

Media Molecule have announced Tearaway Unfolded for the PS4 at Gamescom with the trailer but it is planned to release sometime in 2015.

 

Is EA Access Worth Your Money?


Yesterday, EA announced a new subscription service called ‘EA Access’ coming exclusively to Xbox One. Gamers will pay a monthly or annual fee ($6.99 or $39.99 AU respectively) and will have access to what EA is calling ‘The Vault’, a collection of games from their back catalogue, as well as access to 10% discounts and pre-release trials for newer games.

Yep, you read that right: You’re paying for the ability to pay less for their games. If this sounds like PlayStation Plus or Xbox Games with Gold, that’s because it’s essentially the same thing, but exclusively with EA titles.

I already pay for PlayStation Plus, and have found incredible value in the service, though the idea of paying for a second discount service has never crossed my mind. Truthfully, it still hasn’t. Games such as FIFA and Battlefield are incredibly popular, and I’m sure will be the main marketing points for EA in their campaign to get gamers to care about this service, but one thing we have to remember is that we are still paying for the games.

EA Access

The best thing about PlayStation Plus and Xbox Games with Gold is that each month you are given access to a slew of free games – some old, but increasingly we are being given awesome games that are brand new to the platform – from a whole range of developers. I find the idea of having access to one publishers games for a price quite silly – and frankly it’s kind of scary. Think about one year from now, when Activision and Ubisoft have jumped on to this bandwagon as well, offer their own membership services and PlayStation Plus and Xbox Games with Gold are a shallow husk of what they used to be. Why would any of these publishers give their games away for free when they can charge the consumer for the right to pay less?

One thing to mention is that this is exclusive for Xbox One. Sony passed on the service, and were quoted as saying: ‘We don’t think asking our fans to pay an additional $5 (US) a month for this EA-specific program represents good value to the PlayStation gamer”. Personally, I have to agree with Sony on this one. The only EA games that spring to mind that I would be interested in playing in the coming years would be the next Mass Effect, and if ever made, the next Dead Space – but that’s just my opinion. I know how big Battlefield, FIFA and Madden are, so if a gamer plays all of these titles it may be worth their while to pay to save a bit of money AND have access to a library of older titles.

When I say ‘older titles’ I mean those that are already available on Xbox One, as there has been no mention of whether you’ll be able to play ‘last-gen games’ with this service. Perhaps down the road, when more titles are available in ‘the Vault’ it could be worth it for me, but by then we will have access to PlayStation Now, which will grant access to multi-generation games streaming – as well as whatever competing publishers cook up to combat EA’s service.

Honestly, this feels like the next evolution of online passes to me, and I wouldn’t put it past EA to eventually make EA Access mandatory for online multiplayer for their games – but I’d love to hear your opinions? Feel free to comment in the comment section below, or send me a tweet at @deanypants.

OXCGN’s Final Fantasy X & X-2 HD Review PS3 & Vita


Nostalgia

Final Fantasy X & X-2 HD Remaster brings us back to the magical nostalgic world of Spira once again. And without a doubt, its an amazing experience to be playing through (arguably) some of the last truly ‘great’ Final Fantasy titles that Square Enix has made.

It feels like a return to form, to what Square used to bring to the Final Fantasy series, to what gave them their reputation. It’s a humble experience that will surely please both nostalgia seekers and those new to the franchise.

The refined music score in here is noticeable almost immediately. It is a treat to the ears, and never oversteps its bounds to ruin the original track.

FF X | X-2
Beautiful game then, beautiful game now

FFX / X-2 are beautiful games. With the exception of troubled lip syncing and the jarringly square faces of not-important NPC characters; the game flows and looks fantastic with a sharp frame rate and largely updated textures.

As I say with all HD remakes, something that sets them above next games is that they essentially have no jagged edges on any graphical features in the game. The result is crisp, crystal clear images that simply are amazing.

All pre-drawn backgrounds that occasionally featured during FFX have been completely redone and look jaw-dropping. As an aside to this review, it makes me question why its rare to see pre-drawn backgrounds anymore? The power to create perfect backgrounds and integrate them properly is here now. With FFX as an example Tidus looks just as much a part of the background as the foreground.

It made me consider the hopeful remakes of the Final Fantasy PS1 Classics and the the possibility that they could simply redraw the backgrounds and be done with it. (Whatever gets it here quicker right?)

For those who scan the internet and read about all the extra features that have been included into the game from the ‘International Edition’. You may feel disappointed if you’re outside of the USA. As such, in Australia most of these features were already included in our original PS2 copies of the game.

We do get a few extra features such as the Eternal Calm video that bridges the gap between Final Fantasy X and its Sequel. But nothing that is overwhelmingly exciting to change the games themselves.

FF X | X-2
Beautiful art style

What was promising was the cross-save feature between PS3 and PS Vita. Essentially, the basic idea is if I save a game on the PS3 I can continue on my Vita. And while this does work, the process is not very streamlined. So far, I have had no success in getting cross save to work by simply saving my game, and continuing on the my Vita.

To get it to work, I’ve had to save my game. Then hold down L1, L2,R1,R2, Select and Start to reset the game. Endure waiting through the menu, choose which game your playing (FFX or X-2), wait for it to load up, open the data transfer menu, let that load, the once its loaded simply exit out.  Then repeat the whole process on the vita to sync it on both systems. It’s a bit of a chore and unfortunately has meant there have been times I’ve forgotten.

Unfortunately players must also purchase copies of both systems (no cross-buy here, but its Final Fantasy so we already expected our wallets would be drained right?).

The Vita version itself I have spent less time with. But it does provide the full experience on the hand held. Graphically, it does lose its quality especially in the crispness of the image and frame rate. It feels more like the original PS2 version is showcased on the Vita.

One great feature that’s exclusive to the Vita is a ‘quick heal menu’ that is accessed via the touch screen and really helps reduce downtime between battles. That said, if you’re a Final Fantasy veteran across the series, you’re going to struggle to remember that its there. We’ve been accessing menu’s for decades. It’s hard to give up addiction.

FinalFantasy_X_X-2_HD_Remaster_0002
Such a shame there’s not PS4 version

If Final Fantasy X has any let downs is that it probably holds your hand well into the games story. The result especially for Final Fantasy veterans is that it may require over 15 hours of game play before battles really start to involve much strategy.

Overall I wouldn’t hesitate to purchase this quality remaster. Final Fantasy X is a legendary and historic title, and to have the opportunity for both new and old gamers to experience it is a treat for everyone. And as an added bonus you’re treated to it’s not-as-well-received sequel for extra bonus value and an extra 40 hours of game play.

You can’t wrong with this masterpiece.

Pros:

+ Arguably one of Squares best games.

+ A comprehensive and easy to follow narrative full of emotion and twists.

+ Lots of challenging end-game content.

+ Some extra bonuses new to the game.

+ Graphics are razor sharp.

Cons:

– Not important characters did not receive much attention in the graphical remastering of the game.

– Lip Syncing wasn’t so good back a decade ago; what was an amazing effort back then is definitely awkward to watch now.

– No cross-buy with Vita/PS3.

– Where is PS4 version?

– Still not Final Fantasy 7 remake.

9.5/10