Friday, 21 March 2014

Little Gamer Update - Turning (PlayStation) Forty


So last week, I celebrated my Fortieth birthday and took that step over the hill. I had a great time and was kept on my toes by a series of wonderful surprises by my lovely wife. I had a surprise Weekend away in a swanky hotel in a beautiful suite. The Little Gamers came along too and it was great to have a weekend away with them before entering my birthday week. Then I had a surprise trip to the Harry Potter studios, got some wonderful presents and managed to eat out for 4 days straight! So thank you to everyone who made my birthday the most memorable birthday ever!

My birthday brought this old fart to step in to the world of new shiny tech. I am now the proud owner of a PlayStation 4! The transition from Microsoft to Sony is now complete, with my new PS4 fitting right in with the PS3 and PS Vita. It really is an awesome piece of plastic. I have been a big fan of the design, but to see it up close it really does it for me. The sloped design is very Sci-Fi, the light bar and the touch buttons make it feel like the future. The box though is really just the thing that sits under the TV waiting for you to put a disc in.

New Shiny!
The controller is the thing that makes or breaks a console. Coming from Xbox, I found the Dual Shock 3 took some getting used too. I know that some people are very damping of the DS3 and whilst I didn't feel that strongly, I knew that t was the PS3's weak point . The Dual Shock 4 though, is a glorious piece controller. It feels right in your hand and the new triggers work excellently. The fact that shooters now use the triggers rather than the bumpers is a revelation for Sony users. Thanks to the touch pad the controller is slightly wider than before and that means that your hands don't feel cramped when playing. Speaking of the touch pad, where it is used, it works really well and is responsive. The thing that I had forgot about was the speaker in the controller, which provided an one time scare in RESOGUN when the "Save the last Human" line came out of the controller.
DS4 - The best game controller ever?

The blessing/curse of Playstation Plus has meant that for the first time ever, I have a backlog of games to play before the console was out of its box. I have been collecting the PS4 instant game collection titles since November and have quite a collection to play with:
RESOGUN
Contrast
Don't Starve
Outlast
Dead Nation: Apocalypse Edition

Then I have the cross-buy purchases from PS3/PS Vita that have PS4 versions, like Flower and Sound Shapes. Of course, there are the Free-To-Play games as well like DC Universe Online, Warframe and War Thunder.

You just want to jump right in!

All of this is before, I get onto the actual retail games. The PS4 I picked up had Killzone: Shadow Fall bundled with it and I also got Knack (it's to play with the kids) as a present. Finally, thanks to the upgrade offers being run on certain titles (which ends on 31/3/14) I upgraded my PS3 Assassins Creed IV: Black Flag to the PS4 version for just £10. I think I may of made the right decision to stop playing the PS3 version quite early into the game and wait to get a PS4. Black Flag is beautiful on PS4 and has water in it so good that even real water feels ashamed that it is not next gen water!

The best part of getting a PS4 now, is that in a few hours I can sit down with inFAMOUS: Second Son and Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes. Two of the hottest next gen releases to come out since the PS4 launched in November.

Over the next few weeks I will be going into the PS4's games in more detail and maybe even a couple of reviews.

The future of TwoLittleGamers is about to change, thanks to a simple button on a controller. I am talking about the "Share" button on the Dual Shock 4. This button allows gamers to connect with the world in various ways. First of all, the simplest function is to take a screenshot of what ever you are doing at that moment and then share it via Facebook or Twitter.

Next, when you press the "Share" button the last 15 minutes of gameplay is stored as a movie file, which can then be uploaded to Facebook. Unfortunately there is no support for YouTube uploading though... yet! This means that I can start producing my very own Lets Play videos and have already started work on a Killzone playthrough. Here is a test of one I did earlier...



Finally, there is the option to broadcast your game live on the internet, via Twitch. This is very popular at the moment and from what I have had a chance to dabble, great fun. It is a very good way of making even single player games an online experience. So there is now a TwoLittleGamers Twitch channel which you can access here or via the icon in the menu on the left.

That kind of wraps everything up for now, very exciting times ahead in my gaming life. They say life begins at 40, it looks that way at the moment!

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