Gaming

A sleepy short about Breath of the Wild (spoilers)

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild continues to amaze me as I traverse the world Nintendo created. I had to share an experience I probably will never experience in gaming again.

There is a particular puzzle in Breath of the Wild that requires you to maneuver a ball through a maze. I will say at this point that the motion controllers are downright awful. They are way too finicky and react to extremely slight movement. Unless you have steady hands motion puzzles will always shake. As a result I could not keep my hands steady and was about to give up the maze. As I threw the controller towards my side the maze spun around wildly. And then I noticed something.

The maze could be turned upside down. The other side of the maze was flat. I turned my controller upside down in excitement to see that the maze turned upside down as well. From there it was a simple flick of the wrist, the ball was out of the maze and onto the pedestal I needed it to go, and off I went. The amount of variance one can go about clearing puzzles is staggering. This moment of clarity was so eye opening I had to shut the game off once I had cleared the puzzle entirely. It easily was one of the most rewarding and creative ways I have ever finished a puzzle.

Now if only the motion controls didn’t suck so much.

Gaming

An incredibly strong Q1 for gaming in 2017

Resident Evil 7, Nioh, Nier: Automata, Horizon: Zero Dawn, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Gravity Rush 2, Mass Effect Andromeda, Yakuza 0, and Persona 5 will all have been released within the first quarter of 2017. While it remains to be seen if Mass Effect Andromeda will live up to expectations, it should be fair to say that for the first quarter of 2017 triple A titles have been some of the strongest we have ever seen in any quarter of video gaming ever.

Perhaps this is a sign that triple A gaming is making a resounding resurgence. Big developers have come out of the gate swinging this year, and while not all games hit the mark (cough* Wildlands) most do their part to cater to the gaming audience at large. Something to note of that list above is many are from overseas. It may be a sign that Japanese developers have started to find their place in a niche market once again, or that they have found their groove lost long ago. In any case it is a welcome sight to see so many games coming out of Japan exceeding expectations and delivering top notch performances.

However we should not be hasty in assuming this year will be all sunshine and rainbows. With the release of Persona 5 and Yooka-Laylee in April we may be heading into a quiet second quarter as a result of a strong first. It begs the question of whether smaller mid tier gaming (such as Fire Emblem and Crash Bandicoot) and indie gaming will be able to fill the void of the second quarter, or if the gaming industry will slump in preparation for the titan that is Shadow of War.

In any case, we should celebrate the start to a strong year. Because I know these games will tide me over well into the summer and fall.