Unpacking the PlayStation 4 reveal

Prior to the unofficial yet predictable unveiling of the PlayStation 4, I expected disappointment. Sony's continued failures did little to convince for anything better. The PlayStation 3 launched for $600 with no software support for two years; the ridiculously expensive PSP Go didn't play PSP UMDs, and the PS Vita barely sees any new game releases. Even outside of the video games market, the last innovative piece of technology Sony produced was the Walkman.

But I was wrong; Sony finally learned something.

Dual Shock 4 - A tentative grasp

About a week before Sony's announcement of the PS4, Destructoid.com posted what looked like a prototype PS4 controller. In the photo, a blue light bar - similar to the Playstation Move - hinted at some type of motion control implementation. No one wants to waggle their controller or shake it furiously; we learned that immediately after the Nintendo Wii's novelty wore off. After hearing the confirmation of Move support, the idea didn't bother me.

PS4: Temper your expectations. Sony learned nothing

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At this point, I expect disappointment. Despite showing great potential with their excellent game development, Sony continues to produce expensive, unwanted or unnecessary gaming hardware. With Wednesday's event in New York, the reveal of the PlayStation 4 (or whatever Sony decides to call it) will determine whether or not Sony finally realizes the great position the company sits in. Microsoft's lack of software development and Nintendo's painfully slow sales of the Wii U, puts the Playstation 4 in a position to reclaim the dominance of a decade ago.

But unfortunately, I instil little faith in Sony to provide any innovation or perfection. Destructoid.com recently shared a photo of an alleged PlayStation 4 controller. The photo indicates a built in, lit, motion sensor bar, small touch screen or display and, improvements to the analog sticks and directional pad. 

When considering Sony's track record with leaks around items like the PSP Go, PS Vita and new PS3 models, one can safely assume the legitimacy of the alleged prototype controller.

Now Playing: Civilization 5: Gods and Kings

I played Civilization V many times before, yet I never understood why I did anything. I failed to understand why I researched certain technologies like Animal Husbandry, or why Science points proved important to the progression of these technologies. From friends who knew the answers to why, they often preached just learning from experience. But when you feel a lack of progression after playing a game for hours, without actually knowing the significance of your actions ultimately feels pointless.

During the Holiday break, GreenManGaming.com discounted the Civilization V: Gods and Kings Expansion from $20 to $3. Despite no intention of ever playing Civilization V again, I bought the expansion based on the recommendation, and promise, that with the addition of Religion, new units and new Leaders, the game drastically changed. With a long break from school and excessive amounts of free time, I committed to actually learning how to play and understanding the significance of certain units or buildings. I again encountered the endless learning process that plagued my initial Civilization V experience.

Review: Dishonored - Blink, stab

I don't know if I actually enjoy stealth games. I find that whenever guards spot me trying to sneak from behind, I fall into an awkward limbo where I will either restart from my latest save, or stab everyone in the neck until I hear complete silence. Unfortunately, Dishonored doesn't change my mostly cynical opinion about the stealth genre. Dishonored's industrial, Victorian era setting fails to even compete with the highly detailed and futuristic world of Deus Ex, but it stays close to the crouch walking, throat stabbing and trap setting tactics found in the best stealth games.

Lagging Behind - Saints Row: The Third

If you look at the total number of unique users, as of December 3rd, Grand Theft Auto 4 ranks as the 13th most actively played Xbox game. Players managed to turn Liberty City into a canvas for ideas both ambitious and simple. While some players established activities through unofficial rules or constituted verbal challenges to all participants, I preferred the structured modes available in the multiplayer. I especially loved the thrill of out-driving my friends in game of Cops N' Robbers, though naturally I grew bored and sought other games with more responsive controls and clearer purpose.

The stiff and imprecise character control made turning corners quickly like trying to Parallel Park a tank in an obviously small parking spot. Regardless of control, I would often block a busy intersection with a bus or any large vehicle. Awkwardly climbing onto the roof, I stood and watched atop the bus for traffic to pile up. When drivers became suspicious of my choice of parking spot, they would try to reverse out of the traffic jam. I responded quickly by lobbing grenades then firing a RPG multiple times into the sea of metal. Shrapnel flew in every direction. Explosions triggered more explosions. But comparatively, my trivial bus roadblocks in GTA 4 reflect amateurish desires in the universe of Saints Row: The Third.

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