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 411mania » Games » Columns

Four Player Co-op 01.08.14: Killer Instinct, Marvel Games, Microsoft, More
Posted by Stephen Randle on 01.08.2014

Stewart Lange has joined the game.
Cara Alex Brown has joined the game.
Todd Vote has joined the game.

Quizmaster Greetings, and welcome to another edition of Four Player Co-op, where the years may change, but the game remains the same: answer my questions, get the points, try vainly to win a game that has been rigged beyond all human comprehension.

Start the game!

QUESTION ONE: Well, we're starting a new year, so it's time for the traditional question at this point. What are you looking forward to in gaming for 2014?

Stewart Lange - At this point, there aren't any games I'm desperately looking forward to outside of Thief and Watch Dogs, so I'm really just interested to see what comes out this year that really changes things. I think there'll be one or two sleeper hits this year that really take things by storm and it's that unknown I'm looking forward to. Bring it on. Otherwise, I look forward to getting the time to play some of the games I've not had the time to get through yet.

Also, I'm looking forward to my reboot of Ask 411 Games doing well with you all sending me questions to Stewart.411Games@Gmail.com of course!

Cara Alex Brown - Several things to be honest. I'm really excited to see more news being released for Kingdom Hearts 3 though, that's probably the biggie. So many childhood memories. On top of that though, I'm hoping to see more come of the Wii-U. I definitely don't think its hit its prime yet and think Nintendo are going to up their game. I feel like I'm the only person who doesn't particularly give a damn about the ps4/xbone rivalry though. It's the same old story with the majority of the same games. When the mass hysteria over first person shooters and apocalypse games stops and they fix all the issues with their buggy systems, then I'll be interested!

Todd Vote - Getting my hands on a PS3, provided I can find one for the right price. Then hopefully jumping full on into the next generation. Those two things are probably at the top of my list for 2014. There are so many games from the current generation that some of us missed out on due to the inability to own more than one console. I am really hoping to get my hands on some of them this year.

If only there was an article, say somewhere on this very site, that detailed what I, and other gamers, wanted to accomplish in 2014. SYNERGY!

Quizmaster - As the only one not to attempt to plug something written by someone else in my column, Cara gets 432 points. "Synergy" isn't even a real word, Todd. It was made up by business executives as a catch-all phrase for anything they couldn't properly explain to the workers.

QUESTION TWO: So, if you've been playing the new Killer Instinct and still haven't spent money to unlock any characters, there's good or bad news, depending on your perspective: after the latest update, Jago is no longer the character you get with the free version of the game, as he's been rotated out and Sabrewulf is now the only character those cheap bastards who won't pay for the whole roster can fight with. Any thoughts on this rotation strategy?

Stewart Lange - I've not played it yet, but it feels a little bit like bullshit to me. I mean, I just can't agree with the fact you need to buy EVERY character individually, maybe they should just have one bundle price for the entire downloadable game? Too sensible? Of course it is. It's nowhere near as sensible as sending a question in to Ask 411 Games........ sorry. It's a bit of a harsh bait and switch they've pulled here changing the free character, but let's face it. If you have Killer Instinct and really care about getting the most out of it, you'll be buying at least 50% of the available characters anyway, won't you?

Cara Alex Brown - Having never played this in my life this is all jibber jabber to me. It sounds like a game with people who are big cat hybrids though. Jago and Saberwulf definitely sound like vicious wild cat names, so now I have an image of two giant panther-like creatures clawing each other's face off. Something tells me I'm a million miles from the bat though.

Todd Vote - I actually like the idea. Give those that haven't made the jump to the full version yet a bit more incentive to do so. In the original KI series, Jago was like my least favorite character. I just wasn't any good with him, therefore I didn't like using him all that much. So by rotating the free character, it can actually influence two different groups of people. It gives those on the fence a chance to experiment with the different characters, and decide if they want to make the purchase for the full game. In addition to that, it also forces those cheap bastards who won't pay for the full roster to start over anew, and relearn an entirely new character if they want to keep trucking through the gauntlet of computer controlled opponents.

Quizmaster - Well, Todd seems happier now that Jago is rotated out, because if I recall correctly, back when they announced the F2P Killer Instinct, his answer contained more swear words than your average episode of The Wire. I suppose he can have 1832 points for that.

QUESTION THREE: Okay, so last week, several Marvel Comics-based games were removed from PSN, Live, Steam by Activision, including the recently-released Deadpool, but nobody is saying why. Speculation is that Disney is refusing to renew the licenses, but there have been no actual statements about why they would do this, or why these games have disappeared. The floor is now open for wild speculation!

Stewart Lange - It's a very strange one, that's for sure. I'm not sure what Disney could be planning, unless they treat us to multi-packs under their own publishing licence which would get the games to have a spike in sales and make them more money than they would if they remained under Activision? I guess it depends on who owns more of the property- the developer who made the game, or Disney who own the character licences. This may just be a case of us losing some of the back catalogue of games and maybe making them rarer in years to come.

Cara Alex Brown - This one has really confused me. I can't really find any logic in it. I can't see how it would benefit Disney, or anyone for that matter, to stop their release. Who knows. Let's just blame the illuminati. Always blame the illuminati.

Todd Vote - Simple. Disney wants control over all their properties. This doesn't mean an end to Marvel games, not by a long shot. What this means is Disney stands to make a shit load of money by licensing out the characters again. That way they control who gets to make games for their properties, and they get to have a hand in what games are made. Let's face it, there hasn't exactly been a superhero game that has set the world a buzz on the last gen (are the 360, and PS3 considered last gen now?) consoles. I mean I thought The Ultimate Alliance games were great, but not everyone agreed with that. Maybe this will make the developers hungry again to make something special with these characters.

Quizmaster - Well, we have two completely reasonable and well-thought-out responses that logically make sense of Disney's decision, and one that accuses a shadowy organization with mysterious motivations of a convoluted plan that makes absolutely no sense. This should be easy.

Cara gets 2834 points.

QUESTION FOUR: News leaked out this week that Microsoft, after E3, was actually seriously considering making the XBOne a disc-less system, totally reliant on digital downloads and the DRM policies they initially had announced. Given how quickly they had to reverse their DRM policies, I suppose they're probably glad that they didn't go that way, but in a different reality, would you have been more or less interested in an XBOne that completely abandoned discs and went completely digital?

Stewart Lange - As a game collector, I like HAVING something for my money. Don't get me wrong, I have a stupid amount of downloadable games stored on my 360, but the fact that they stopped producing manuals didn't sit right with me, let alone stopping making the actual hard copies of the games. The biggest thing I'd miss would be the option of trading in games I am finished with or didn't like. I have easily 30/40 games on my hard drive that I'd love to be able to "sell back" even if it was just for the total equivalent value of one new game for all of it.

Cara Alex Brown - Completely and utterly less interested. Perhaps it's because I'm a console collector but I despise not having hard copies of games. I recently bought the limited edition wind waker wii-u and I'm planning to re-buy wind waker as a disc, just because only having a download code infuriates me. My PSVita (I'll resist bragging about how good a deal I got on it) just arrived with download codes as well and I hate it. I have the worst memory in the world, what if I forget my account details? I rely on discs. "Always always have a hard copy of everything for safety" was drilled into me in all my years of computing, so that may be why I feel so strongly. The only downloads I'll accept are for PC games and that's almost always because hard copies just aren't made anymore, so I don't mind using Steam. I feel like the only person who's against this "move forward" where everything is download only but I damn well wouldn't buy an Xbone if it was. Hell, I'm still annoyed that they don't release games with proper, thick game manuals anymore.

Todd Vote - Less! Way less! I've recently given in to the idea of purchasing some games digitally, the deals were just too good to pass up. But that in no way means that I am ready to embrace a total digital platform for gaming. For me personally, there are just too many variables at play to make it seem like a good idea to me.

Maybe I am old school, but I just like the idea of being able to purchase a game, have it in hand, and know that I can now do whatever I want with it. Plus, I still stand by my idea that limiting trading games between gamers is only going to hurt the publishers in the long run. If you can't ever try something new without dropping $60 on it, I feel you are going to be less inclined to give your money up.

Quizmaster - Man, it's a good thing Microsoft hit "reverse" on that little policy, isn't it?

BONUS QUESTION: Let's go people, time for those most hated of traditions, the New Year's Resolutions. And what do you resolve this year?

Stewart Lange - This year? I haven't resolved anything, although I turn 30 in a few months and I feel like I should do one grown up thing this year, like finally try and look into buying my own house or getting a new, better job. Something like that. Also, go to the dentist more regularly. Pass my advanced drivers certificate. Maybe write a novel. Start eating healthier. Contribute more reviews to the site. So, yeah. No resolutions here.

Cara Alex Brown - This is the first time I've been asked this surprisingly. Both of mine are somewhat cliche; but I aim to stop biting my nails (I know, it's a horrid habit) and to improve my drawing skill - especially digitally - as much as possible as I'm a digital art student. Actually, I'm studying to become a game animator, ironically. Happy New Year everyone, hope someone actually manages their resolution!

Todd Vote - I have resolved not to resolve anything. Let the chips fall where they may.



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