I kept waiting and waiting to pull the trigger on getting a Playstation 4. $400 is a substantial investment, there weren’t a ton of exclusive titles, and I figured the price would drop over the summer of 2015. Well, turns out it doesn’t matter that I waited because my girlfriend wound up buying it for us (thanks, babe!). Seriously though- it has gone to great use since we got it. To be fair, she uses it much more than I do. I didn’t think I would play much on it but these four titles have kept us pretty glued to it these past several weeks!
I haven’t played more than 20 minutes of this game, and half of that was spent in character creation, but I can see why my girlfriend has been glued to it 24/7. It’s a console exclusive game that is a part of the Dark Souls series set in a gothic style world. The player is challenged by all sorts of crazy blind dudes with scythes, swords, pistols, and chain… whips? This game calls for player mastery in the 3D space and of your chosen weapon. You can alternate between a long range and short range weapons to take on enemies alone or with others. The online system uses beckoning bells to find other players who are trying to get through the same levels as you.
If you haven’t played any Dark Souls games or Bloodborne, you have probably heard another gamer passionately discuss how hard it is. Why would so many people keep playing it if it seems so rage-inducing then you may be asking. I know I asked. Well, my theory is because it is so incredibly rewarding when you do conquer things. You team up with unknown allies to defeat huge bosses and enemies that would otherwise seem impossible to overcome and it takes a lot of work. My girlfriend says it feels like she is really doing something with her life when she makes good progress in Bloodborne. Not many games can do that!
2. Rocket League
ROCKET LEAGUE. This is one of those games that, at first glance, looks like nothing special. Let me tell you that this game is worthy of all of the attention it has been getting. I was talking to a coworker about how I thought this game’s success could also be attributed to it’s timing. This game came out in the middle of the summer with no other really big AAA titles flooding the market and when everyone is looking for a game to hop into with friends. It was being given away for free for anyone with a Playstation Plus account while going for $19.99 on Steam. I am pretty confident in saying it is the best free game I’ve ever played.
Think Matchbox cars meets FIFA. The gameplay is simple- hit the ball with your car using boosters and jumps to get it into the opponent’s goal! Each game, whether you win or lose, you get an item at the end. The item can be a topper for your car, an antennae, wheels, decals, or a different trail particle effect. The matches are 5 minutes each which is perfect for the fast pace. Losing is easy to cope with due to the low cost of sticking it out for one game, but winning feels so good. There are no weapons and being good is mastering the jumps, timing, and angles. It’s one of those games that has me cheering and jeering at my TV and pumping my fists like I just scored a goal in the World Cup.
3. Trials Fusion
I was so fond of Trials after having played the first one on Steam years ago that I looked at the new one on the shelf at Gamestop with a knowing smile on my face. I remember having tested Trials Fusion a year or two ago at Comic Con before its release. Fortunately, my girlfriend was familiar with Trials so it was an easy pickup for us. As much as I love my hardcore RPGs and FPS games, sometimes it is nice to play a casual game like Rocket League and Trials Fusion. Both games offer as many laughs as they do controller-gripping vein-popping moments.
Trials Fusion is just a good time. The goal of the platform time trial game is to get from the starting line to the finishing line as quickly as possible to place-hence the title. What makes it unique is the ability to lean your player forwards and backwards to balance your rider and spin your bike. Unfortunately, your avatar is highly susceptible to crashing and will ragdoll flop all over the place after the slightest touch to their body. It makes for some hilarious results, too. In Trials Fusion, you can use the L and R stick to flop around and do some ridiculous ragdoll flailing before you decide to give it another go. The quick restarts make gameplay feel smooth and addictive. Similar to Rocket Legaue, you can unlock various upgrades to your bike for fun customization. It’s another great local co-op game for those who have gaming SO’s!
4. FIFA 15
What can I say? I love soccer. I miss having cable to be able to watch Premier League and some MLS games but now I get my fill by playing with coworkers and playing FIFA. I don’t know all of the fancy new features that 15 has over any other version but I think it is a fine game. There is a lot of nuance in moving the player and the dribbling/defending. There is an astonishing amount of unique animations but very often do you see popping, clipping, and other odd bugs. Considering the movement animation is at least 50% of the game I have to say I am pretty surprised at the amount of bugs I see in each game but it doesn’t ruin it for me. For as many bugs as I see, I am also wowed by some of the unique moments in player celebration, reactions to calls by the ref, and idle animations.
I’m very much looking forward to FIFA 16 with the addition of women’s teams. I hope that they push the PS4 graphics a bit further as I think that the VFX could use some stepping up .I really noticed the water FX in particular when you are playing in the rain. One more nice thing I like about this version is there is very little repetition in what the announcers say. I think it was FIFA 12 or 13 that I heard a lot of repetition but maybe I just haven’t played as much yet.
Well, that’s it for my two cents on some great PS4 titles! I would have mentioned GTAV, of course, but since I am already playing it on PC, so. I am looking forward to some other titles on the PS4 like the next Quantic Dream game, Horizon, Firewatch, and The Last Guardian.