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How Sony Saved Me Over $780 This Holiday Season..

So like many others I have just finished watching the Sony E3 press conference, and have begun to assess my thoughts on it as a whole. While there were some highlights for me like the Destiny and Watchdogs footage. I was for the most part unimpressed, I expected more. I expected at least a few more exclusive titles shown, not just exclusive bonus content in multi-platform titles.

The biggest surprise and highlight of the conference was when they announced the price, at $399 it's almost a steal. But then they unveiled the NEW PS+. Now I have been a PS+ member in the past, and re-sub sometimes to regain access to my IGC games when I feel like it, and I really see it as a great value. But right now on the PS3 and Psvita, PS+ is a CHOICE. I can subscribe to access a host of content and features or I can let it lapse and lose access to that content and re-up later.

But with the new PS4, PS+ is REQUIRED to play any of your games online. This is very similar to Xbox live, in that it restricts the users access to the multiplayer portion of the game they PURCHASED. Now don't get me wrong I think PS+ is still a great value, far exceeding the value offered through Xbox live. But not allowing me to play the entire game I just purchased unless I keep up with a sub fee, is uncalled for. It's not the cost I have a problem with $5 a month is very cheap. But it's the principle of not allowing you to play your whole game, that you already paid for.

Unless Sony has suddenly required every multiplayer mode to employ dedicated servers and got rid of peer hosting and we are paying for server upkeep. Then I do not understand why it is now a mandatory cost of playing my game. This principle is one of the sole reasons I never allowed myself to purchase a microsoft console.

Now that I have this information that the PS4 will require me to keep an active PS+ sub in order to play online. Even though it's a good value and very cheap for entertainment these days, I might have to skip it out of principle as I have with the Microsoft consoles. What I will most likely do is wait on purchasing a PS4 until they have a good library of single player titles, and get it when it drops in price to play the great singleplayer exclusives.

I had all the intentions to purchase a PS4 on release day for $399, with an extra controller, a game (killzone: SF). Which would have costed me around $500. I was also going to purchase a psvita with the intention of playing my PS4 games on the go via remote play and wifi. Which would have costed me around $250, with a memory card $30. So in essence Sony's decision to mandate PS+ subscriptions into their multiplayer component might have saved me a total of $780 this year.

To some I may be overreacting when considering the value Sony offers with the PS+ service, but it's the principle not the price.Will I change my mind and bite the bullet come launch? Possibly...but as it stands today, I believe I'll be playing my gaming PC and Wii U this fall. Happy Gaming folks.

Two Birds With One Stone

After watching the specials "events" for SONY'S PS4 and MICROSOFT'S XBOX ONE, I'm sure thoughts of the potential of each are swirling around in eveyone's head. Thoughts about how much better the games are going to look, the integrated features that are going to be available, the prices?!?! launch dates?!?!

All of these questions and ideas are what makes the next gen exciting, but they are also what makes it hard to wait for additional info. I decided to write this blog because I have a suggestion for what SONY in particular could ( and should imo) do when it comes to pricing and bundling of the PS4.

As everyone knows the the PS4 has been built from the ground up to work with the VITA, as a controller but also as a second screen in many ways. SONY has acquired Gakai who has built their low latency streaming technology into the PS4 operating system. With this new technology the VITA is capable of acting as a client that receives streaming video from the server (your PS4) and send input commands back to your PS4 at very low latency. So this means you can essentially play a smaller version of every playstation 4 title you own on the go if you have a wi-fi signal (3g for some models i'm guessing).

To me, allowing you to continue the same play experience on the go, but with high quality graphics the PS4 is capable of, just downscaled to a smaller screen is HUGE. I sometimes do not like being able to only play those high quality console experiences on my tv at home, sometimes I want to continue my game at my girlfriends house without moving hardware, or in the breakroom at work, or laying in bed before I get some sleep.

So my suggestion to SONY is, if the technology behind remote play works with every PS4 title, and it works well with low latency and decent visuals, you need to make it a main selling point of the VITA. To increase the knowledge of this feature I believe they should have two PS4 packages at launch with very specific pricing.

They should have a standard PS4 package that is priced competitively at $399 that comes with a 3 month subscription to PS plus, in addition to that package they should have a "Play Everywhere" bundle that includes the PS4 and a VITA, that is priced very modestly at $499 that also comes with a 3 month PS plus subscription.

Bundling the VITA would dramatically increase sales, which in turn would entice developers, especially the PSN indie developers to make games specifically using the VITA capabilities. This would help SONY'S struggling handheld and promote PS4 gameplay as well.

Let me know what you guys think of this idea, and giv eme some of your own in the comments section, happy gaming!

Medal of Honor Warfighter Multiplayer Review (PC)

Ok, so I have yet to touch the single-player campaign and I have no idea when I will. I bought this game with hopes for the multiplayer portion, and it sorta delivered.

So far I've played about 12hrs of the multplayer on various modes. And I have to say Medal of Honor:Warfighter's multiplayer, is GOOD. At some points it even has glimmers of great, but it's not quite there like Battlefield 3 was. I enjoy the new fireteam system and the fact that they included a peek/lean. But other than these 2 exceptions the multiplayer is pretty standard fair.

The graphics are good and the lighting is great since it's on the Frostbite 2 engine, but not all the textures are up to snuff. There's a ton to unlock in multiplayer, almost every piece of your main weapon can be customized. There are also 6 different classes to use and each class has 12 different soldiers to unlock within the class, making for 72 different soldiers all together. Each of these 72 different soldiers come from different nations and come complete with a different set of weapons. Although the only weapons you can customize is the main weapon, not the secondary or grenades/mines.It's still a about 72 different main weapons to try and customize to your liking, along with each of the 6 classes having a unique special skill. It's very overwhelming at first seeing all the things you will eventually be unlocking.

The gameplay itself is a mix between Battlefield 3 and Call of Duty, if you could imagine such a thing. The movement feels more like Battlefield, so does the gunplay being that they have realistic recoil and bulletspread. Along with the fact that it takes a few shots to take someone out unless you're playing the game on the hardcore setting. Where as in Call of Duty players seem to go down with a few bullets whether it be in the leg or the chest.

The Elements that make MoH: Warfighter feel like Call of Duty is that there are kill streak, well score streak in this game. You gain points for things like assist, defusals, supplying you're fireteam buddy etc. Eventually you'll get enough to where you are given a reward and you can choose out of a support or offensive reward, which I like. Another thing that makes it feel like Call of Duty is that the maps are small and there are no vehicles.

A standout feature in multiplayer is the Fireteam system where you are given one teammate who you can aid and spawn on through the match. You can supply him with ammo and also heal him no matter what class you choose. Also you get points for protecting him and assiting him in various ways. You can also spawn on him and see and outline of him the entire match to organize easier. Another benefit is you can see a red outline of the person that kills your fireteam buddy for about 3 seconds to help you exact that avenge bonus!

Another standout feature is being able to lean and peek from cover. Personally I love this feature because it makes the firefights feel that much more authetic. How often would you return fire at someone wielding a high powered assault rifle or sniper rifle with your body fully exposed? It's a feature that adds realism to both 3rd person and first person shooter titles and adds value in my book.

The modes in the game are fun but are pretty standard, they go from Team Deathmatch to a few variation of capture the flag and bomb defusals modes.

Ok so to wrap this up, if the gameplay from Battlefield 3 got dropped into a close quarters map without vehicles, added point streaks with cool rewards ala Call of Duty, and had the 2 new features I mentioned above would you want to play it? That's basically what you're getting here, nothing exactly groundbreaking but pretty fun nonetheless. Especially if you like alittle more realistic gunplay than what's on offer in the next black ops.

Here's a link to a gameplay video I took showing some of the interface and gameplay. I'm not very good yet still need alot of practice!