Sony’s Yoshida slams No Man’s Sky’s bungled PR: “I understand some of the criticisms Sean Murray is getting”

PlayStation games boss critical of pre-release PR and broken promises.


Sony’s Worldwide Studios boss Shuhei Yoshida has criticised indie darling Hello Games for its bungled promotion of space adventure No Man’s Sky.

The highly anticipated title met with heavy criticism on release, with many expecting features – such as multiplayer – that were never included in the final game.

“I understand some of the criticisms especially Sean Murray is getting, because he sounded like he was promising more features in the game from day one,” Yoshida told Eurogamer.

Murray had, on numerous occasions, stated that players would be able to meet up with each other in-game.

“It wasn’t a great PR strategy, because he didn’t have a PR person helping him, and in the end he is an indie developer.”

Many players who’d bought the game on PS4 and PC kicked off, asking for an unprecidented amount of refunds for the game after release. Despite this, Sony Australia argued that the game did deliver on its day-one promises.

Missing multiplayer was just one of the aspects of No Man’s Sky that disappointed players – here’s a list of other “missing” features, but also the lack of end-game content.

Despite being critical of the marketing, Yoshida stated he personally enjoyed the game, and didn’t think the fiasco around its release will harm the PlayStation brand in the long run.

“I am super happy with the game actually, and I’m amazed with the sales the game has gotten, so I’m not the right person to judge if it has ‘harmed’ the PlayStation brand,” he said. “I personally don’t think so.”

Here are the digital goodies for Blizzcon attendees this year

Friday, 16 September 2016 05:39 GMT

By James O’Connor

If you attend Blizzcon this year, either in-person or remotely with a Virtual Ticket, you’ll receive some neat digital extras for numerous Blizzard games.


The in-game goodies have been announced on Blizzcon’s official website, and if you’re a big enough Blizzard fan to be playing all six of their major current games you’ll be well catered to.

The digital items include:

  • World of Warcraft: Legionnaire Murky and Knight-Captain Murky
  • Overwatch: Blizzcon 2016 Bastion skin
  • Diablo 3: Diablo 20th anniversary pet (PC/Mac version only)
  • Heartstone: ‘Welcome Inn’ card back
  • Heroes of the Storm: Nexus Tiger mount
  • Starcraft 2: A new portrait and ‘mystery goodies’

The Starcraft 2 bonus will eventually be made available to everyone, at a later date, but the rest are going to be exclusives.

Blizzcon 2016 runs across November 4 and 5 in Anaheim, California.

Free from the shackles of Xbox One, Rise of the Tomb Raider is doing incredible things with PS4 Pro

Surprisingly, this former Xbox One exclusive has one of the most interesting uses of PS4 Pro.

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One of the games that stood out to me at Sony’s PlayStation 4 Pro announcement event was an older one – Rise of the Tomb Raider. A lot of people were crowded around the live demos of Mass Effect or Horizon: Zero Dawn, but Rise of the Tomb Raider seemed to me a bit of a hidden gem – a great example of what the PS4 Pro is potentially capable of.

The game looked gorgeous even on the much-weaker Xbox One, but there’s also a high-end PC port that forms a solid benchmark to compare against Sony’s new top of the line machine. Most interesting of all the game features three different graphic modes that PS4 Pro players can switch between, an incredibly smart idea.

Only one of those three visual modes is designed for 4K, meaning the team has put serious thought into how to offer a PS4 Pro benefit to players on 1080p displays. In this Tomb Raider was fairly unique at the event, with most others promising but not talking specifics on 1080p benefits of the platform.

After skipping on the PlayStation platforms with its first release, Crystal Dynamics seems keen to ensure Lara’s return to her traditional home is a special one both technically and otherwise, with the PS4 Rise of the Tomb Raider package seemingly a fairly jam-packed one. We grabbed Crystal Dynamics Studio Head Scott Amos at the event for a little chat about the benefits of PS4 Pro and how his team has been utilising the new hardware.

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VG247: Tomb Raider seems to be one of the games here that seems to most have a handle on ideas of different things to do with PlayStation 4 Pro. How challenging was it to get to where you are now in the time you had?

Scott Amos: The good news is that we have some really amazing technology partners. When we made Rise of the Tomb Raider, Eidos Montreal partnered with us at Crystal, and then there’s Nixxes, who’s been a long time partner with technology – they’ve done all our PlayStation work for the past few years.

“If you’re going at 1080p on a PS4 Pro you can run with an unlocked frame rate. So instead of being just at 30 you can run north of 45 frames or better.”

Having these three groups that are very experienced, we can turn pretty quickly on a dime. We can actually take some new technology and say ‘we want to go after that’, and throw the right kinds of resources and experts at it.

For us it’s been one of those labours of love. It’s been a chance to say ‘here’s all these assets we made, here’s all the stuff that’s so high def we couldn’t show it on a console’ – being able to take that stuff and actually make it run perfectly, having it at 30 frames, having the different resolution modes going… for us it’s been a lot of fun.

Compared to, say, Naughty Dog and Uncharted, you guys have a high-end PC version. Does that simplify the process somewhat for you, having a PC version to work backwards from?

Every platform we work on we want to maximize the experience, right? With a great game, you’ve got a great game no matter what platform it’s on. If it’s fun to play, you want to go play it, and we want to be able to show off our technology too. Be it PS4, be it PS4 Pro, from our side it was about saying that we know what great looks like.

One of the things that the teams do that we pride ourselves on is having that vision, having that honesty. We call it ‘if it’s on the sticks, it’s on the screen, then it’s real. If it’s not, it’s not’. For us it’s about always putting our best foot forwards and always trying to one-up ourselves. So every time a new technology comes along, our job is asking how we can maximize what we already have and then putting the best version of that out with that technology. So, we love it – we love being able to take that opportunity.

One of my stories I like to tell is looking at Lara’s face – she has the scar from the first game that, honestly, you really couldn’t see until now. Now the idea is you’ve got the resolution that you’re like ‘Oh my gosh, I can see the texture details on her face!’

It was there before, but it just couldn’t resolve. For people playing on console, sitting on a couch, they didn’t get to see that. Now, big 4K TV, big 4K resolution, you can. It’s awesome.

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One of the things I’ve realised at this event is how hard this stuff is to demo. Knowing the tech as you do, what’s your pitch to those at home who are unconvinced by what they’ve seen on stream of the hardware or indeed your game’s use of it?

So, a couple of different things, right… First, this year. It’s the 20th celebration for Tomb Raider. 20 years ago the franchise launched and now, 20 years later, here’s our love letter to the old fans and the new fans.

“From our side the benefit of having so much horsepower is that we can kind of direct it into different channels.”

There’s a great game, there’s a massive amount of content. There’s every DLC we’ve launched in the past year plus new DLC, and we actually now have dabbled in new technology like co-op in one of our DLCs, and VR… So you actually get a sense that we’ve put everything we’ve got into this package in terms of rendering technology, visual technologies, gameplay experience – all that together, so that people can say this is an amazing package.

Then we were able to look at the PS4 Pro – what can we do with that? How can we push it further? Well, we actually added real-time in the options menu the ability to slide between three different visual settings.

You can go for a high frame rate – so if you’re going at 1080p on a PS4 Pro you can run with an unlocked frame rate. So instead of being just at 30 you can run north of 45 frames or better. It’s one of those things that, when you start playing it, it’s great for those speed runners and those hardcore gamers who are just like ‘I want to get through this as quick as I can, I want seamless controls’.

Then you’re like… this is a beautiful area, I want to take a closer look, you can slide over a notch and now we have enhanced visuals. That’s actually 1080p locked at 30 frames but we throw everything in that we can – lighting, multi-pass rendering, texture shading, reflections, density of pixels, density of particle effects… everything we can turn on. It’s just this beautiful-looking experience at a locked 1080p, 30 frames.

“Suddenly there’s things in the world that with this ratchet up in crispness and clarity that you just couldn’t see before. Something on the horizon that used to be a blob of kind of grey shadow on the hillside is now a very crisp outline of a ruin with a cross on top of it.”

Then you go to 4K. Suddenly there’s things in the world that with this ratchet up in crispness and clarity that you just couldn’t see before. Something on the horizon that used to be a blob of kind of grey shadow on the hillside is now a very crisp outline of a ruin with a cross on top of it. It has some sunlight poking through a hole and trees way off in the distance, and you honestly couldn’t have seen that before, it would’ve just faded off and dropped to a low resolution – but now you can see it. That does have this ratcheting effect on the immersion and on the ‘oh my god, I’m actually there’ experience.

You’re fairly unique here in that you’re talking more about what all this means for non-4K TV owners too. Would you say there’s a lot of value for players with 1080p tv sets?

Yeah, exactly. I think from our side the benefit of having so much horsepower is that we can kind of direct it into different channels. That’s why we’ve worked with Sony and said… hey, what if we had these different settings from the 4K resolution to some custom 1080p resolution options. That was exciting to them because it lets us look at different ways to exploit the technology and give different types of experiences. Whether you have 4K or a nice 1080 screen there’s some really nice ways to look at this.

On top of that in our game in terms of value we’ve got over 50 hours of content, custom character skins – everything we’ve done is piled into this one package for PlayStation, and I think that’s a great package. Plus – it’s 20 years, man. It’s a great celebration of Tomb Raider and Lara Croft.

Rise of the Tomb Raider is out on PS4 October 11.

Resident Evil 7 blowout: shocking price rise, ghoulish new screens and mysterious story details revealed

Everything we know about Resident Evil 7 Biohazard’s story so far.

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TGS 2016 is dropping trailers all over the shop and earlier today we saw a wonderfully gruesome one for Resident 7 Biohazard.

There’s an update for the demo today that will induce more pant-soiling terror. You can download the Twilight version even if you don’t have PS Plus, and poke around the dilapidated mansion some more. No doubt there will be some scary new surprises in store.

Even more terrifying however, is the price increase.

The digital deluxe version is getting a ten dollar price increase from $79.99 to $89.99. This version includes the game and season pass for two extra story episodes. An additional story episode is now being added, explaining the bump in price.

The good news is that if you’ve already pre-ordered the digital deluxe edition on the North American PlayStation Store, your pre-order will be upgraded automatically with no charge, so you’ll be getting the third story episode for free.

Pre-order customers of both the standard and deluxe versions are in for a treat as well. The Survival Pack: Recovery Set full of consumable healing items will bet thrown in and you’ll find them in your inventory every time you start a new game. You’ll also be able to play on the Madhouse mode difficulty level from the get-go rather than having to complete a run-through on normal first. A “mysterious in-game Lucky Coin” will be thrown in as well.

And the last of the pre-order bonuses is a dynamic PS4 theme for those ordering from the NA PlayStation store.

Now on to the juicy story details.

A loose translation of a Resident Evil 7 Famitsu feature popped up over on reddit, revealing a giant wodge of new details.

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Let’s kick things off with the dinner table scene. This is apparently a piece of art made specifically for TGS and isn’t representative of the actual game. We won’t see some of the characters here in the game at all.

To the far left we have Camille Baker. The first time I saw this I thought it was a random corpse, but she’s an old lady and she’s alive.

There is a point in the game where the player wakes up in the derelict mansion and meets Camille. So look forward to that encounter.

Next is the Lucas Baker, his parents Jack and Marguerite Baker, and poor old Andre from the demo. Camile and Lucas are mentioned as having a role in the game with Lucas being a major character, so I think it’s safe to say that Andre isn’t going to make it to release day.

The interview alluded to returning Resident Evil characters, and you can also expect to meet other survivors in peril. There’s an interesting note in the reddit post that reads “it was originally translated as the game starts off in a zombie outbreak, but that’s not correct, and this is not the opening but a scene later in the game.”

The Gamescom Lantern demo featured a character called Mia, who has a close relationship with Ethan. The demo is indicative of the regular gameplay, with tough enemies.

Then there are the “memory sequences” which I presume refer to the “video tapes and other methods” that you can use to alter the course of events as you play. The enemies aren’t as hard to deal with in these portions of gameplay.

Speaking of enemies, mindless zombie hordes are nowhere to be seen. We’ll be dealing with named characters that stalk you throughout, but the good news is that you can take them on and emerge triumphant. Which means we get weapons.

You’ll start out with some kind of crude weapon, but early on you can swap this out for a knife. Obviously you’re going to struggle to take anyone down in the first few hours with that, but it is possible thanks to the interactive environment that you can use to your advantage. I don’t think this goes as far as Home Alone style booby-traps but enemies can be finished off in this way.

The interview briefly touches on the ghostly aspect of the game, talking about the bayou and a ghost hunt for a mysterious girl spotted in the swamps.

There’s also confirmation that the game is almost done and is on track for January release date. Don’t forget to download the Twilight version of the demo to tide you over until then.

Resident Evil 7 Biohazard is coming to PC, PS4, and Xbox One on January 24, 2017.

Resident Evil 7 gets a new trailer and a demo update today

Resident Evil 7’s excellent marketing campaign continues today with a new trailer and an update for the Beginning Hour demo.

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The new trailer, fresh from TGS, introduces us to the Baker family of Dulvey, Louisiana. They do not seem like pleasant people.

The PS4-exclusive Beginning Hour demo, which has been downloaded 3 million times, will receive an update today that will “allows players to explore more of the mysterious, derelict mansion”, Capcom has announced. This will be known as the ‘Twilight’ iteration of the Beginning Hour demo. Update: You won’t need a PS Plus subscription to access it, either, unlike the original demo release.

With the initial release, Capcom stated that the Beginning Hour would not feature characters or content that would appear in the final game, although it’s not clear if this is still the case for this version.

Resident Evil 7 has also been confirmed as one of several games that will support 4K With the PS4 Pro.

Resident Evil 7: Biohazard will release on PC, PS4 and Xbox One on January 24, 2017. It will support PlayStation VR, if you’re braver than me.

Excellent dog pulls off a Hadoken in Street Fighter 5

Thursday, 15 September 2016 02:20 GMT

By James O’Connor

Some dogs can roll over, others can play dead; this dog can perform the quarter-circle punch action required to use a Hadoken attack in Street Fighter 5.

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‘Holy shit’, indeed.

According to the comments, the dog made the quarter-circle motion with her nose while hitting the punch button. You could, of course, chalk this up to pure happenstance, but this is such a specific motion…part of me wants to believe that the dog knows what it’s doing.

Jess Bell’s entire channel is dedicated to this dog doing cool stuff and being affectionate. If you’ve had a hard day and need something to cheer you up, I’d recommend it.

Street Fighter 5 is available on PS4 and PC.

Dead Rising’s new PC, PS4 and Xbox One ports are the definitive version of a classic

Frank’s charmed me all over again.


It’s probably been a good 9 years since I last played the original Dead Rising. It was a staple game I’d return to again and again throughout late 2006 and 2007, but I’d forgotten much of it. The memories left were hazy – I just remember I hated it… and then loved it.

As I boot up its new PC port, much is familiar. Strangely, this is as close I’ve come to re-experiencing a game just as I did the first time around. ‘This sucks,’ I think an hour in, as bosses are near impossible and protagonist Frank West a slow, lumbering fool. Was I wrong about the game?

Then I level up. I die. I learn the layout of the mall and the location of shortcuts. I learn boss patterns. I start the story again, keeping my character progress. Frank is stronger, faster, and the silly idiosyncrasies of the story begin to charm once more. Maybe I restart a few more times, but by now everything has clicked.

Its ability to take me from ‘this is bullshit’ to ‘this is the best’ inside a couple of hours is a testament to Dead Rising’s design.

Just as it originally did things begin to fall into place, and suddenly Dead Rising is one of my favourite games again. I’m reminded that it’s certainly one of the best of its console generation. Its ability to take me from ‘this is bullshit’ to ‘this is the best’ inside a couple of hours is a testament to Dead Rising’s design. It’s not all about the artificial nature of levelling up Frank either – it’s about learning the mall, the mechanics, the game.

In this regard, Dead Rising has actually aged pretty well. Later games in the series chose to strip away aspects like the strict timer, the roguelike ‘It’s okay to fail and start again’ attitude and a really rather weak character at the onset. Dead Rising 4 worryingly looks to be taking that even further. I understand why – mainstream appeal and all that, but Dead Rising’s re-release serves as proof that broadly speaking these ideas are not entirely out of date.


Dead Rising was one of those early Xbox 360 games that almost straddled the console generation. It suffered multiple problems as a result. There were the infamous issues with unreadable tiny fonts on non-HD TVs, and the game suffered terrible load times and screen tearing. This is a chance for the game to shine at last in its optimum form. On PS4 and Xbox One this rerelease runs smoothly and loads more quickly. On PC, I experience the game at maximum settings with 8x MSAA and an unlocked frame rate well in excess of 100fps. It’s glorious.

The graphics options aren’t exactly extensive, but it hardly matters in truth – this is a great port that ran well on every machine I tested it on, and this remains a bloody great game. Immediate loading and less stomach-churning screen tear make it much less of a chore to let Frank die and start the story over to experience it in a different way, which is really the entire point of the game.

Support for other features of the PC platform is equally solid. There’s support for monitor resolutions beyond 16:9 during gameplay, and the game seamlessly switches to console button prompts the moment you touch a controller. As with Capcom’s recent and excellent PC port of Dragon’s Dogma you can even switch between keyboard/mouse and controller mid-game, something I did a few times to pull off a difficult shot with a gun.

Playing Dead Rising again does prove that Capcom Vancouver did take some steps that were absolutely right with the sequels. Those who act like the first Dead Rising is the only good one honestly aren’t thinking things through.


At the time of release the concept of anything in the mall being a weapon was incredibly novel, but now I find myself frustrated with the potency of them. Baseball bats are all but useless for instance, and I pine for a workbench and a pack of nails to make them more deadly ala Dead Rising 2. Planting your feet to fire weapons (especially smaller ones) is nightmarishly outdated and makes taking a firearms approach to most bosses near impossible.

Dead Rising is still great. This port is also great. It’s the definitive version of a classic; I’m terribly happy this is no longer trapped on the Xbox 360.

Movement in general feels less dynamic than you’ll be used to from more modern games, and here is where the game’s history is exposed – it feels like something that, if not for technical restraints, could’ve appeared on PS2. It’s that early-gen 360 feel.

These aspects haven’t aged well, but the game is also designed around these constraints. Dead Rising makes the absolute most of what it has. In many ways I’m still surprised by how forward-thinking its design is, and for every moment where I’ve wanted to scream because a useless AI survivor refuses to push past a group of zombies when I’m on a tight time limit there’s a moment where everything falls into place just right and I feel like a zombie apocalypse god.

Of course, I’m well aware that some of the things I love about the game are things that’ll drive others mad. This is why the timer is being nixed for Dead Rising 4 and why it was nerfed in 2 and 3 – it can be frustrating, and a ‘perfect run’ of Dead Rising where you save everyone and do everything possible for the best outcome requires a great deal of knowledge of the game’s clockwork systems to achieve. I’ve never done it, but I plan to try on this port.

It’s a game you’ll love or hate, but if its unforgiving, slightly mad nature sounds like it appeals to you, there is finally now a way to experience it that doesn’t involve hooking up an old console and living through crashes, screen tearing, a deeply unstable frame rate and ridiculous load times.

It’s still not for everyone, but Dead Rising is still great. This port is also great. It’s the definitive version of a classic; I’m terribly happy this is no longer trapped on the Xbox 360.

Dead Rising is available now on PC, PS4 and Xbox One. Also newly available are Dead Rising 2 and Dead Rising 2: Off the Record. Capcom provided download codes to test the ports.

Pokemon Go: How to use the Buddy Pokemon System

How to get started with Pokemon Go’s latest feature: Buddy Pokemon.


Pokemon Go has recieved a significant update patch, and this latest update brings with it a few significant all-new features. Top of the list is an all-new feature for the game: Buddy Pokemon, the ability to set a particular Pokemon as your friend that’ll hang out with you on the menu screen and earn extra goodies as you walk around.

Think of this as being a little like how the anime series’ Ash Ketchum has a lot of Pokemon, but Pikachu is his buddy – now you can be like Ash. There’s even a neat little easter egg for you if you, like Ash, pick Pikachu as your buddy.

Buddy Pokemon sadly don’t appear on the map, but they will appear on your profile page. More importantly, your buddy brings certain benefits, and will of particular note deliver to you candies that can then be spent on upgrades. Considering how difficult candy can be to come by this is a great way to earn candy for more rare species of Pokemon.

Pokemon Go: How to Choose (and change) your Buddy Pokemon

Your Pokemon Buddy choice shouldn’t just be based on who your favourite Pokemon is, but should also be based at least a little on utility. You’ll receive candy for the breed of Pokemon of your buddy just by walking around, so you’ll want to pick a Pokemon of a type that you’re keen to evolve or power up and thus in need of more candy for. This is great for rarer Pokemon – your Dratinis, Charmanders, Bulbasars, Squirtles and the like.

Don’t panic too much about your initial choice: You can easily change your buddy later on with a few button presses. Keep in mind that if you change your buddy you’ll lose all progress towards the next candy on your existing buddy, so the best time to change buddy is right after being rewarded the first time around. Switch buddy as often as you need in order to ensure you’re always getting useful candy.

Once you’ve got the update installed, a new option will be quietly added to one of the menus in the game. To reach the new option, Hit the picture of your trainer in the lower left corner of the screen. Then tap the menu button in the lower right corner. Tap the Buddy menu option, which has been added between Journal and Customize. Choose your buddy. Simple!

If you find the menu option to select buddy is missing, you don’t yet have the update. Head to your format’s app store to grab the update, and if it’s not available there sit tight for a day or so – the update is rolling out this week and is already live for some.


Pokemon Go: Earning Candy via the Pokemon Buddy System

Once you’ve got your buddy set, this Pokemon will start earning candy for you as you walk. This mechanic works much the same as Pokemon eggs: walk around and the game will reward candy after a certain amount of distance travelled.

There’s a catch to all this: Different Pokemon have different walking needs. A Metapod, for instance, only requires you to walk 1km in order to receive a candy. A Charmander meanwhile requires you to walk 3km while a Lapras requires you to walk 5km. All of this will be very familiar to Pokemon egg farmers. If you want the full lowdown on the distances for each Pokemon, we’ve got those printed in length on a separate page.

As with everything in Pokemon Go, there are hidden statistics under the hood that mean some buddies will be quicker to level up than others via walking and then spending their candy, so keep that in mind.

Tap the Buddy option at any time as described above to check how far along you are to your next piece of candy. As mentioned earlier, switching buddy midway through a walking milestone will reset that milestone, losing progress towards your next candy.

As with eggs, you’ll need to keep the game screen open on your phone when walking in order to reap the benefits. As with when you’re hatching an egg, when you’ve walked enough to gain a candy the game will alert you much as it does with Pokemon eggs.

Remember that eventually Generation 2 of Pokemon will likely come to Pokemon Go – so as well as farming Pokemon candy you need now, remember to consider that which you might need in the future for generation 2, such as Onyx or Eevee – Pokemon that have all-new evolutions in the second generation.

  • Destiny video guide: Here's how to find every Ghost in Rise of Iron's Crucible maps

    Wednesday, 14 September 2016 02:39 GMT

    By Jamie Dalzell

    Rise of Iron’s hidden Ghosts are secret no more.

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    Ghost and Grimoire hunters take note: with private matches now live in Destiny ahead of Rise of Iron’s release, the update has also seen the addition of Ghosts hidden in every single Crucible map. That’s 27 on PS4, and 26 on Xbox (due to map exclusivity).

    Each Ghost also awards Grimoire, so if you’re a collector then Arekkz’s guide is well worth watching.

    Destiny: Rise of Iron is set to release on September 20 on PS4 and Xbox One.

    Star Citizen dataminer uncovers massive city model and brings it to life

    Wednesday, 14 September 2016 01:56 GMT

    By Jamie Dalzell

    While players were busy mining asteroids, Max was datamining Star Citizen’s files.

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    PCGamesN reports that one crafty dataminer has managed to uncover a gigantic, sprawling 3D model of one of Star Citizen’s sci-fi cities within the game’s files.

    Called ‘Terra Prime v2’, the city asset was extracted from the game’s Patch v2.5 update, before being reconstructed and then uploaded to 3D model sharing site Sketchfab by Max, who had to compress the massive city into a measly 200MB to fall under Sketchfab’s file size limitations.

    Max notes that the file – like the city itself – is huge, consuming almost 2GB of RAM. So make sure you’re on a beefy enough laptop or desktop before you buckle in for your virtual space tour of Terra Prime V2.

    The interactive viewer below lets you do just this, while the video above gives you a behind the scenes look at just how Max carried out this herculean task.