Playstation Now – First Impressions

I recently signed up for the Playstation Now 7 day free trial.  The range of titles is pretty impressive and our buddies across the pond have had another load drop in this week – when the EU gets a hefty update is unclear – I haven’t found anything online as yet.

The service itself is pretty straight forward – you select the game you want to stream, it saves to the cloud and allows you to gain trophies…ideal for folks who either don’t or no longer have a PS3 and still want to play older titles – a nice way to get past the lack of backwards compatibility.

My main concern is the pricing.  £12.99 a month for unlimited access is pretty good but there are no deals for PS+ users.  A perk would be, for an extra few quid more, PS Now is an added feature to all PS+ users.   Most of us nowadays also have Netflix, Amazon Prime, Spotify and a variety of other streaming subscription services so the price is a bit off-putting.

If a monthly subscription isn’t your bag, then a 48 hour rental period for £2.99 or a 30 day rental period for £7.99 may be better BUT this is per each title meaning that the £12.99 option is more worthwhile unless you simply MUST play the odd title here and there.

To give the actual gameplay a review is difficult as my internet has been terrible over the past week meaning that even browsing the web has been a chore.  Sky, yet again, are having issues in my area – no doubt all that tinkering with the cabinets with fibre now being available here.  Sadly I haven’t played it much due to my connection issues hence this isn’t a review.

So far I have tried Twisted Metal, Everybody’s Golf, Crazy Taxi and Ratchet & Clank A Crack In Time.  Due to my connection  I cannot fairly comment on the quality of streaming as I suffered a lot of input lag.  The games themselves loaded pretty smoothly and the only time the stream struggled was during the CG sequences on Ratchet & Clank.  Gameplay was fine aside from the input lag meaning that, as you can imagine in a platform game, timing of jumps and attacks were off resulting in a severe beating and level restarts.  At times, movement would get stuck so when you’re running, despite letting go of the stick, you keep going.  Again, that resulted in many deaths and me giving up to play a PS4/PSN game.

One thing I was quite surprised about was that Remote Play functions on PS Now.  I usually use the PS TV in my living room as my PS4 stopped working on my main TV (HDMI handshake issue, I think) so the PS TV gets me by until I’m in bed.  Obviously, due to my connection issues it struggled over Remote Play but the sheer fact it lets you do it is pretty awesome as a lot of features don’t work over Remote Play.

So, all in all, it’s a good service with a good selection of titles that looks to be getting expanded upon soon but for folks with poor upload speeds it’s not worthwhile unless you want to suffer from input lag to the point you Hulk out.  Plus, the price seems too steep for my liking especially as I already pay for PS+.  Seeing as PS+ gives us access to PS3 titles monthly, for those that can’t redeem them it would be awesome to allow unlimited access to that game on PS Now.

If you’ve tried it out, share your thoughts below!

PODCAST: Gotham Commentary (With Brief Store Update)

Due to another hectic week with a variety of personal stuff going on (combined with illness and tiredness!) Week 39 didn’t really provide much fruit but, as mentioned at the start of this podcast, the lack of updates is negligible considering the biggest news yet has hit – SDCC Bloody Hannibal Funko POP!s (and more) are coming!!!

I intend to either write or even discuss this further in another podcast but in the meantime, here is a much delayed commentary of episode 1 of Gotham (the previous recording failed and trying to find time to sit down and watch a show in peace and quiet and record at the same time is tricky…)

Let me know what you think on Twitter, Facebook or in the comments below!

 

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The Retro(per)spective #1

Hello and welcome to a new feature to the Nerdgazzum Blog.

In this irregular feature, I will be plucking out elements from “back in the day” – bearing in mind I was born in 1984 so experiences may vary!

So, let’s take a trip back to 1996…

My brother worked in a video shop (a video shop was kinda like Netflix but instead of scrolling through titles you were actually IN a shop browsing VHS titles with your hands and sneakily tucking titles to the back of the ex-rental section while you nip to an ATM to get cash out or buy yourself some time to decide if you want it or not).  Anyhoo, I used to get free reign over movies and videogames that the shop had – as well as getting surplus time code recorded VHS, merchandise (I still have a pack of cards that were a promo for Casino).

One of my favourite Playstation titles (now known as PSOne or PSX) was Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain.  I would have the game out A LOT – I’d have to take it back from time to time to allow others who may want it (so my bro wouldn’t get in trouble) but the hours I spent on this game was phenomenal.

One of my first thoughts was “Wow, this is so fucking cool” (yes I swore a lot when I was 12…I actually swore a lot before I even hit double digits – nothing to brag about, kids).  The first time I thought this was when I consumed blood from a poor peasant…without even touching them – OMFG you can suck blood from victims remotely!!

Vae Victus!  To look at the game now, it doesn’t look good…but gameplay-wise, older games had it down.  It is a pretty linear game with a few freedoms here and there.  Characters are rich and draw you into the story and if you can see past the graphics you’ll find a gem that may change your life.

The voice-over work is fantastic, adding another layer to the depth this game has to offer as well as the general sounds/ambience.

If they could do an HD remix of this game without losing any of the original qualities and, I dare say, steering clear of some of the issues the 3D sequels wrought upon us then I’d be a very happy chappy!

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