Tech2.Games S01E02: Demos, financial reports and an assortment of mixed reactions

Tech2.Games is your weekly dose of all things gaming.

2017 has been a good year for demos. From Nier Automata’s demo which doubled as a lesson in tutorial design to Prey’s sudden jab to your stomach while you weren’t looking (I’m sure there have been more, but these two did leave an impression on me). At the other end of the spectrum is a conspicuously large bag of mixed reactions, and Nintendo carrying on as if it’s business as usual. Let’s look back on the week, shall we?

 The Prey 2 Demo is out on Xbox One and PlayStation 4

The first hour of Bethesda and Arkane Studios’ Prey is now playable on any platform that is not the PC (well, not quite, but you get the point). There is no official word on why this is the case. However, one can speculate; potential porting issues, copy-protection, piracy, etc. If you own either console, it’s worth the 13+ GB download and one hour of your time. I’ve played through it once, and will say this: Prey’s first hour makes an impression—in the only way an atmospheric first-person adventure can. Step into the shoes of a male or female Morgan Yu and experience the bizarre, mysterious world of Prey and witness the shady practices of TranStar firsthand.

Prey Demo: Opening Hour is out on PS4 and Xbox One.

Nintendo has sold 2.74 million units of the Switch

The Nintendo Switch has done well for Nintendo, and honestly, this shouldn’t come as a surprise. Its flagship launch title The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has garnered universal critical acclaim and the console’s nifty portability is an attractive proposition for those of us on the move. It also comes as no surprise that the game sold 2.76 million units on the platform (3.84 million including Wii U sales—yes, Nintendo reports a higher number of game copies sold than actual hardware). Here are some more numbers for you: Pokémon Sun and Moon sold an astonishing 15.44 million units since November last year, and the Nintendo 3DS saw a 7% year-on-year increase in hardware sales.

There’s more to dig and decipher if you’re a fan of reports with excruciating detail, so here’s Nintendo’s consolidated financial statement for the years ending March 2016 and 2017.

Call of Duty®: WWII trailer comes out, is not universally disliked

Around a year ago, Activision released the trailer for the 2016 Call of Duty game, Infinite Warfare, and it was received rather poorly. With over 3.5 million dislikes on YouTube, it sits behind Justin Bieber’s Baby (which is comfortably in the lead with 7.5+ million dislikes, and in no danger of being dethroned).

The internet-hate bandwagon appears to be moving in second gear as far as the new game is concerned, however, and Call of Duty’s return to its roots and the promise of a “gritty, personal experience in the setting of the largest worldwide conflict in history” is apparently an appealing one. Would you pay $60 for a reimagined version of the Omaha beach landing? Now we don’t know if that’s in the game, but the monotony of the near-future setting was getting to everyone, and this is a much-needed break. Oh, and don’t forget to pre-order (preferably with all the DLC, of course) and buy merchandise such as this totally-not-fake GI Duffle Bag for $35 at the official online store.

However, Activision then tries to sell you stuff you got for free ten years ago

Oh, Activision. Just when people were starting to totally not hate you, you resort to your baser instincts. With the release of Call of Duty®: MWR Variety Map Pack on PC and Xbox One last week (it dropped on PS4 around a month ago), you get remastered versions of “Creek”, “Broadcast”, “Chinatown” and “Killhouse” maps, as well as 10 “Rare” supply drops.

Not only is the price point of $15 more than the $10 PS3 and Xbox 360 players were charged back in the day, On Steam in India, this will cost you Rs 1,210—which was almost exactly the price of the full game at launch. The DLC maps were free on PC as part of an Nvidia promotion as well.  There’s still no word on a standalone version of the remaster (you will still need to purchase Infinite Warfare’s Legacy edition to play MW: Remastered).

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III releases, divides critics and players

Currently sitting pretty(ish) on a Metascore of 81, it’s safe to say critics haven’t hated Relic Entertainment’s latest installment in the RTS series set in the Warhammer 40K universe. However, user reviews on both Metacritic and Steam have been less than kind to the game.

The emphasis on hero units akin to multiplayer online battle arena games (MOBAs like League of Legends and DOTA), and departure from traditional RTS systems such as base building and micro-management has seemingly put off real-time strategy purists, while critics feel that it holds on to Relic’s traditional RTS design sensibilities and brings in new ideas to evolve the genre into something more relevant.  I find the best way to sort this out in your head is to play the game yourself.

Dawn of War III is available on Steam.

Finally, some deals for you this fine weekend

Sony persists with more deals after their Easter sale ended last week, some interesting backwards compatible titles for Xbox One are out, while Steam keeps racing and sniping wallet-friendly. Here are some picks:

Battlefield 1 + Titanfall 2 Deluxe Bundle (PS4 |59% off| Rs 2,750)

Destiny – The Collection (PS4 | 57% off | Rs 1,719)

GRID Franchise (Steam | 75% Off)

Sniper Elite Franchise (Steam | Up To 75% Off)

Dead Space 2 (Xbox One | Rs 1,500)

Dead Space 3 (Xbox One | Rs 1,500)

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