Gamers In Beta Podcast 198: Knob Thingy

Direct Download to Episode 198

As we inch ever so close to 200 episodes, some of our standard co-hosts are resting up for the big occasion. Therefore, we’d like to thank Nick (GamesontheMind) and Chris from BagoGames for filling in this week for Sean and Jay respectively.

In between the constant flow of laughter, we managed to discuss topics such as the Prey demo, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, the NEW 2DS XL, and some interesting comments made by Phil Spencer at Xbox.

Other games mentioned are: Beat Cop, Deathstate, Sniper Ghost Warrior 3, What Remains of Edith Finch, Persona 5, Horizon Zero Dawn, Marvel Heroes Omega, and H1Z1.

Lastly, we have listener feedback, responses to our question of the week, and a new “sitcom” based game show. Thanks to everyone for participating. This show was a blast to record!

New Nintendo 2DS XL coming in July

Discussion around these quotes:

“The audience for those big story-driven games… I won’t say it isn’t as large, but they’re not as consistent,” says Spencer. “You’ll have things like Zelda or Horizon Zero Dawn that’ll come out, and they’ll do really well, but they don’t have the same impact that they used to have, because the big service-based games are capturing such a large amount of the audience. Sony’s first-party studios do a lot of these games, and they’re good at them, but outside of that, it’s difficult – they’re become more rare; it’s a difficult business decision for those teams, you’re fighting into more headwind.

“I’ve looked at things like Netflix and HBO, where great content has been created because there’s this subscription model. Shannon Loftis and I are thinking a lot about, well, could we put story-based games into the Xbox Game Pass business model because you have a subscription going? It would mean you wouldn’t have to deliver the whole game in one month; you could develop and deliver the game as it goes.”

“As creators, we’ve got to think about accessibility of the content that we build. Our big narrative story-driven games are in some ways less accessible. They may be the nth iteration of a story that, if you didn’t play the first and minus-one versions you don’t feel connected to. From a mechanics standpoint, they know the core audience has been playing games since PS1, and they just assume you’re a master with a controller. It’s why I really applaud teams like Telltale Games who have taken an interesting approach to narrative-driven games. They pick stories that people already know, like Walking Dead and Game of Thrones, and build a mechanic that’s accessible. From a core standpoint, we may say is, ‘Ah, it’s kind of quick-time events. Is that a real game?,’ but if you think about broadening the audience, you can’t assume that somebody can left-click down on the stick and hold the right trigger and then hit Y over and over in order to solve some problem. As developers, we need to think about how to broaden our audience.”

Last week’s QotW: What sitcom do you have fond memories of from your childhood? (response at bottom of page)

Question of the week: what franchise would you like to see get the Prey treatment, meaning: complete re-boot.

Voice Mails (508-658-BETA)
Los from Future Monkeys

Game Show: sitcom related

Notable releases this week:
Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy: The Telltale Series (Retail)

For Honor Season Two starts on May 16

Earthfall now on Steam Early Access (one of Jay’s favs from PAX East)

Mudd sentenced to 2 years in “young offenders” prison for hacking

PS Plus games for May

Forza Horizon 3 to release Hot Wheels DLC

Dead Space 2 and 3 now part of Backwards Compatibility

Games with Gold for May

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Direct Download to Episode 198