Games Inbox: Are Platinum Games overrated?

The Tuesday Inbox is upset that Control isn’t a better Metroidvania game, as one reader wonders whatever happened to Ghost Of Tsushima.

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Coming soon

Great to hear that Platinum are back with another great game, all those positive reviews took me by surprise. Technically I had heard of Astral Chain before, but only in that once I saw your review I remembered when they announced. Although I never would’ve remembered the name. Typical strangeness from Nintendo, especially as they’re publishing it and presumably paid for the development.

I’ll definitely be getting it but I assume it’s going to be a complete flop and actually that’s probably one of the reasons Nintendo hasn’t really mentioned it up till no, as they’re not ones to throw good money after bad.

What else have Platinum got on the go at the moment though, GC? Other than Bayonetta 3, of course? They really are one of my favourite developers and while I wouldn’t automatically buy anything they did I would automatically be interested, certainly. I know some people claim they’re overrated, but not me. Roll on Friday and Astral Chain!

GC: They’ve got Babylon’s Fall for Square Enix, which we haven’t seen anything on since E3 2018, and a mobile game called Lost Order. Except for Bayonetta 3 that’s all at the moment, now that they’re no longer working on Granblue Fantasy: Relink.


Off the Chain

I’m sure I’ll get shot down for this, but does anyone else find PlatinumGames to be quite overrated? I haven’t enjoyed either of the Bayonettas and found Metal Gear Rising and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants In Manhattan to be quite poor.

The only one of their games I do like is NieR: Automata but as far as I understand they only did the action part on that, not the story or anything, and to be honest that was my least favourite part anyway.

I guess the problem with having a distinctive style is that there’s no way it can appeal to everyone and I’m actually okay with that. They’re not for me but I’d much rather they did their own thing than just follow the crowd. I admire them for that, but I’m still not interested in Astral Chain.



As a fan of Remedy’s previous games I will definitely be getting Control, even though the response seems to have been a bit more mixed than I was hoping for. It sounds like they’ve not really taken full advantage of the Metroidvania style, is that?

That’s a shame for me, not as a fan of Remedy but one who wishes that Metroidvanias were more common in big budget games. To be honest, I’d much rather have seen Nintendo do a third person Metroid game than Metroid Prime 4, but I suppose they have to bow to what is popular after the failure of Other M. But considering how many indie games there are it’s still a genre I’d like to see much more of for big budget companies.

Weirdly the only other one I know of now is Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, although I remain to be convinced that it’s actually a full-on Metroidvania and not just a game with a lot of collectables.

GC: The Metroidvania aspect is underutilised both in terms of the largely linear progression and the lack of interesting rewards for exploring off the beaten path.


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Beaten to the punch

I’m sure many of you will have already seen the trailer for The Mandalorian, which looks amazing and, for me at least, far more exciting than Episode IX (that IG droid, wowzers!). But the reason I write in is that did it not immediately remind everyone of the few seconds of footage that EA showed off for their canned single-player game – the one the Uncharted writer was working on, before they announced the new Jedi one.

Heck, it also seems to have a very similar set-up to Star Wars 1313, which I believe was going to end up featuring Boba Fett. All these chances that video games had and they could’ve beaten Disney+ to the punch years ago.

Since The Mandalorian already seems to have been picked up for a second season I wonder if they’ll try and do a video game tie-in though? There’s probably barely time to be honest and if, as I suspect, the Jedi game doesn’t do that great I think EA will be ready to give up on Star Wars. Hopefully then someone that’ll actually put in some work on the game will get the licence.
Dack’s Hound


Money issues

Looking at the games people were talking about for the Hot Topic last weekend, about the most anticipated new games, I wasn’t too surprised to see Zelda: Link’s Awakening come up a lot. It does look cute and I have fond memories of the original, but it was only a Game Boy game and I’m pretty sure you could breeze through it in 12 hours tops.

Considering how few extras there are that seems a lot to ask for a full price Switch game. I wish they’d lower the cost because I’m not sure I can justify getting it at such a busy time of year, especially given how many other games are around at the moment.

Value for money is rarely ever a problem with Nintendo games but I think it’s going to be the biggest issue with this game.


Abandon all hope

RE: Starbreem and his hope for cheaper consoles… I hope I’m wrong but the rumours coming out regarding the components going into these new consoles does not make me confident we’ll see any prices below £350. The Xbox One X still retails at over £350 and you’re looking at a better CPU, more powerful graphics card, an increase in RAM, and a solid state drive for storage for the next consoles. It’s going to be hard to keep the bill for that under £450, let alone £350.

Both Sony and Microsoft may sell at a loss, or bundle in 12/24 months of a subscription to keep their prices low, but I feel this is the area Google may capitalise.

If both consoles are prohibitively expensive but Google are offering the same games with no initial outlay on console, that could be there opening next gen.
DarKerR (gamertag)/DarKerR-UK (PSN ID)


Spooky disappearance

Haven’t heard anything in a while about Ghost Of Tsushima. When it was first announced this was the game I’ve been most looking forward to.

I love the whole samurai genre and this looks like the it will scratch all my various itches. Have you seen any more about it?

GC: You haven’t heard anything in a while about The Last Of Us Part II either, which is in a similar situation. They’re obviously not coming out this year, so the longer we go without news the more likely it is that they’ll both become cross-generational games.


Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here


The usual reason

People are always complaining that game companies don’t care about their customers, aside from their wallets (fair enough, considering the evidence) but that cannot be completely true.

Multiplayer games are evidently where the big money is, I mean GTA V multiplayer mode is still incredibly popular, along with Call Of Duty and Fortnite yet companies are still making single-player games/content. What possible reason do they have for doing this? Rockstar have all of the money ever yet last year they released Red Redemption II with their most complex, lengthy, and involved single-player experience yet – why?

Obviously these games still make money but it’s nowhere near as much as multiplayer, so it literally makes no sense for these companies to make them. Hell, even EA are getting in on it with that single-player Star Wars game. You can’t even argue that they do it for clout seeing as that objectively has no impact on the success of their company.

GC: Red Dead Redemption II had the second-biggest launch in the history of entertainment (behind only GTA V) and has sold more than 25 million copies. It also has an online mode. Rockstar are a business and like any business that wants to stay solvent the only reason they do anything is for money. Single-player games can be perfectly profitable and, importantly, than can be less of a risk than large-scale multiplayer titles.


Inbox also-rans

Zelda: Link’s Awakening is £42.85 on ShopTo and includes an A2 poster and Link keyring. On Amazon it is currently £49.99 with no freebies. Also, on ShopTo you can get reduced PSN shop credit. The best deal is a £35 PSN voucher for £28.85.
Andrew J.

Why were the review embargoes for Astral Chain and Control both at the same time and on a bank holiday? I assume that’s what happened and you didn’t just randomly decide to drop those reviews on such an odd day?

GC: It’s because publishers are stupid and never bother to check anything. There were actually three embargoes at that exact same time, but we didn’t have time for Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey as well.


This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Tomen, who asks what is your favourite story campaign?

Despite all the talk of single-player going out of fashion they continue to be made and often play a role even in multiplayer-focused games, but which one do you think is the best? You can nominate any campaign from any year or format, whether it’s single-player only or if the campaign is just one part of a larger game.

When games have a mix of multiplayer and single-player which do you primarily buy it for and do you ever ignore one or the other?

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The small print
New Inbox updates appear twice daily, every weekday morning and afternoon. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.

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