It’s time for another Thursday Throwdown, where Joe, David, and Travis take a topic and offer their individual take. Sometimes they’ll agree, and many times they won’t — they’re unique little butterflies like that.
This week’s topic is simple: If you could buy just one PlayStation 4 launch title, which would you choose?
Joe Garcia: Killzone is hardly the most popular of Sony’s franchises, but it’s one of my favorites, so the easy answer for me is Killzone: Shadow Fall. It takes the series out of the stark whites and greys that were plastered all over the first three games and splashes a ton of color completely alien to previous iterations.
Underneath that beautiful next-gen sheen, though, is much of the same Killzone gameplay I’ve fallen in love with. The near-cumbersome movement and heft of the weapons are things that some complain about, but to me make for a more methodical first-person shooter. I also think that Warzone is one of the most interesting multiplayer modes in any game — instead of one giant 15-minute session of deathmatch or capture the flag, it’s a mix of several. It keeps you on your toes and doesn’t let you settle into a groove.
Smaller titles like Tiny Brains and Resogun look terrific as well, but blockbuster experiences like Killzone: Shadow Fall are the most exciting reason to make the next-gen leap.
David Wales: I’m going to go out on a really thin limb here and say that Madden NFL 25 is my must have launch title for PlayStation 4. It may come as a surprise to hear that, but I really think EA Sports has something special with its Ignite Engine. Recently, the developer also showed off a presentation trailer and a handful of screenshots showing comparisons from current generation titles and next generation titles. The graphic fidelity between the two is honestly astounding and it’s hard to believe the difference between two games releasing just months apart.
Obviously Sony’s PlayStation 4 is packing quite the punch and that results in a better looking product, but the animation and engine itself just seems worlds ahead of what we currently have on offer with PlayStation 3. I also believe the developers have put more time into successfully launching M25 for PS4 due to the terrible reception Madden 2006 received upon launch of the current gen. This makes me even more excited for the game.
That’s right — a yearly sports title is at the top of my list. Eat it up.
Travis Tucker: If I could only pick one game at launch, I think I would go with Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag. I really want to be able to say an Sony exclusive title like Killzone: Shadow Fall or Knack, but Ubisoft has really impressed me.
Everything we have seen in the trailers Ubisoft has been releasing on a consistent basis has looked absolutely spectacular. I know some have complained that it looks like a great pirate game, but not an Assassin’s Creed game. I think that Ubisoft is choosing to keep a lot of the actual assassination elements of it hidden for now, so that doesn’t really bother me. Also, Ubisoft has made it known that next-gen consoles are the place to play Assassin’s Creed IV; Ubisoft Montreal is using the PlayStation 4 to make the game look and feel exponentially better.
Lastly, the fact that the touchpad on the controller can be used for the map blows me away. I know, it sounds stupid, but it does really impress me. When Sony introduced the touchpad on the DualShock 4, I instantly thought “Great… here is another useless feature that will never get used or will be tacked on poorly, kind of like SixAxis.” However, Ubisoft using that pad for the map means they actually took the time and thought “How can we implement this into our game intelligently?”. The ability to scroll through the map, pinch and zoom in/out, and drop waypoints all with a finger touch is very intuitive and a brilliant use of the technology.