Welcome to This Week @ Shack, our regular roundup of news, commentary, video, and guides.
It's mostly a change for the better that developers aren't beholden to make cheap movie tie-in games anymore. There was a time that any big-budget blockbuster had a game hit within a few months at the least, which is how we got a top-down action-adventure game from Jurassic Park or possibly the most infuriating game ostensibly meant for children.
There were some high water marks, of course–usually when developers used the framework and name recognition to push the boundaries of what games could do. Goldeneye 007 helped bring FPS to console, and Spider-Man 2 helped redefine an open-world adventure. Something about the transition to 3D made these games more and more of a rarity, though. Development has gotten expensive and unpredictable, so it's hard to gamble on a tie-in when most of its value will be lost if it doesn't hit simultaneously. Plus games constantly shift during development, so planning those two tracks simultaneously seems to have become too much of a burden to bear.
Still, as bad as they often were, there was something special about reliving your favorite movies over and over with a video game. The plot would be changed in nonsensical ways, and they were almost impossible to finish, but in the days before easily accessible video-on-demand and lightning-quick home releases, this was how we extended and expanded our time at the movies.
I say all this because we're starting the summer movie season this weekend, and yes, it's coming earlier and earlier just like Christmas. And that has me pondering what kinds of games would have come about. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 is a movie that would have lent itself to game adaptations, and those adaptations would probably have relied largely on when and where it was made. Single-player action for NES, shmup for Genesis, janky cash-in third-person shooter for PC and PS1. The possibilities are endless. Maybe because the Guardians series captures a spirit of light-hearted space adventure, it feels very at home to me, in those nostalgic notions of video game tie-ins.
I would have popped quarters into a 5-person arcade beat-em-up cabinet. And I would've called Rocket.
News of the World:
- Tekken 7 doesn't want you to go around thinking it's okay to punch kangaroos.
- Mario Kart 8 set franchise records, which is pretty surprising considering the Wii's install base when its version came out.
- The 2D Breath of the WIld tribute was shut down by Nintendo, but also, it sounds like that was kind of always the plan.
- Darksiders 3 is real, and its heroine looks like Aloy had a baby with Kratos.
- Microsoft announced a Surface laptop that seems to be an answer to the iPad's half-steps.
- Another notable story writer at Valve has left the company.
- It's apparently not enough to reverse our steps toward net neutrality; Congress is trying to forbid us from ever going back.
- Battlegrounds has built a financial winner on a staggering pile of bodies.
- Mario may be lending his notable video game cache to... the Rabbids?
- This might be too much DLC, Fire Emblem.
- Nintendo's president thinks the Switch is building potentially Wii-matching levels of momentum.
- Original Doom memorabilia is going to be on display at a Texas museum, and we got an exclusive look at a piece before the exhibit opens.
- Blizzard really knows how to pay people back for good deeds.
- From winning Emmys to getting shut down. What? And why?
- Injustice 2's first round of DLC characters is a who's who of Mortal Kombat and DC's lesser-known heroes.
- Whatever you might say about Palmer Luckey, man can rock a bikini.
- I spoke with AbleGamers Steven Spohn about Mario Kart 8's accessibility options.
- Ozzie Mejia made a triumphant return to geek out about Injustice 2's story.
- Asif and David have been occupying themselves with Quake Champions, and they have thoughts.
- Greg celebrated his 100th episode of Arcade Corner with a very special episode about Samurai Shodown.
Guides to Life:
- Quake Champions Guide: Tips, Tricks, and Strategies
- Little Nightmares Guides
- Prey Guide: Tips, Strategies, Walkthroughs, and More
- Prey - First Day On the Job - Walkthrough Part 1
- Prey - Breakout - Walkthrough Part 2
- All of Prey's Safe Locations and Keycodes
- Where to Find All of Prey's Workstation Passwords
- Prey: Keycodes To Unlock Doors
- How to Find a Gun in Prey
- The First Safe Code in Prey and Why It Is Hard to Find
- Prey's Hidden Trauma Center Safe and How to Access It
- Prey: How to Increase Your Inventory
- Yooka-Laylee - All Mollycool Locations
Steve Watts posted a new article, This Week @ Shack: 'A Night at the Cinema' Edition
Who doesn't love TW@S?
I'll have to check out that Doom exhibit when it opens. Thanks for the heads up!