How Chasing the Stick was Made

This project expanded so fast that I think it never would have seen the light of day if I had planned out all this scope from the get go. What started out as an idea to just chronicle the history of one game turned into the history of four. I wish I had kept track of the time I spent on Chasing the Stick. I replayed Uncharted 2 through The Lost Legacy. I earned the platinum trophy in both The Lost Legacy and The Last of Us. All of the gameplay alone has to be around 100 hours. If playing games doesn’t really count in your book, then I know I spent months waking up early to work on the story before having to go to work. Researching articles, listening to interviews, watching documentaries, writing, rewriting, reading drafts out loud, editing, creating assets. I have easily spent hundreds of hours making this project come to life. I don’t say all this to brag: I think it is just super rad.

I wanted to share a behind-the-scenes post about the making of Chasing the Stick. I share all the apps I used, the locations I worked in, the tools I used, and creative decisions I made to make it a reality. Hopefully it answers any questions you may have.

Continue reading “How Chasing the Stick was Made”

Chasing the Stick: The History of Naughty Dog during the PS4 Era

I’ve always had an inclination toward Naughty Dog and their games. I first saw the Crash Bandicoot games around 2001-02 as a first or second grader at a neighbor’s house. I was a Nintendo kid growing up, but I liked going over to their house just to play Crash. I thought Crash was cool. Around that same time, the Jak and Daxter games were also being released. I mooched a PS2  off a different neighbor to play bits and pieces of that series. I’d also be introduced to other PlayStation classics like Sly Cooper and Kingdom Hearts. It was my early indoctrination into the PlayStation Nation. I’d finally get my own PS2 second-hand around 2007. The first games I bought were from those three series.

The next Naughty Dog game I’d catch a glimpse of would alter my attention toward the studio from a passerby to an active seeker. Probably around 2009, I saw a demo kiosk for a PS3 and Uncharted 2: Among Thieves inside a Target. I remember the demo vividly: It was the first section when you arrive in Nepal. A massive armored truck chases you down an alley while you run and shoot at its grill and engine. At the end of the alley, when I felt like I was running low on ammo, the truck burst into flames and I escaped. But I didn’t really do those things, the character (who I didn’t know at the time), Nathan Drake, did them: I just controlled it. I think a connection was made then and there. Instead of using a cutscene, Naughty Dog games let me control the action and the story unlike anything I had experienced before.

From then on I was trying to get my hands on a PS3 and was acutely aware of Naughty Dog’s next game. Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception was incoming and I could not wait. The reveal demo of the burning Chateau blew my mind. I wouldn’t get my own PS3 until Christmas 2011, bundled with Uncharted 3. I played the first few opening chapters before putting the game down, determined to play the series in order. I borrowed Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune from a neighbor on Christmas Day. I played the entire game in one sitting the next day with my PS3 hooked up to my CRT television: I wasn’t even playing in HD! I’d then go out and buy Uncharted 2 and then finally play Uncharted 3.

A few weeks prior to that Christmas, on December 10, 2011, the Spike Video Game Awards revealed Naughty Dog’s next gameThe Last of Us. Leading into the awards, other teasers were dropped like breadcrumbs. I remember watching the cordyceps fungus video and seeing the cracked newspaper casing. I was hooked from the get-go, before Naughty Dog was even attached to the game. Finally having my own PS3 just a couple weeks later, I was eagerly anticipating The Last of Us. I went on a total media blackout for it, even hiding my eyes and plugging my ears during the trailer at movie theaters.

Naughty Dog was my reason to own a PS3. I remember reviews for The Last of Us dropped on my birthday in 2013. Reading Colin Moriarty’s 10/10 review on IGN was like unwrapping a birthday present. The game launched just over a week later on June 14, 2013. It is a time I will never forget.

I think the powerful allure of Naughty Dog games comes down to their uncanny ability to intertwine gameplay and storytelling. A saying that I’ve probably heard before, but it never clicked until writing this story, is “telling it on the stick.” Simply put, it is a design decision to tell as much of the story via gameplay as possible. Using the joysticks before text boxes or cutscenes to tell the narrative. This actively puts the player in the shoes of the character, creating a unique, empathetic bond. It clicks with players on an emotional level. It certainly has with me.

As The Last of Us Part II nears its release on June 19, 2020, I had an idea to write a history/editorial on the game. I had done so for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate; this seemed like a logical next history piece for me. I love looking back, gathering context, and analyzing how a game came to be. I find it educational and helpful to provide that information all in one place. My eagerness and drive quickly got the better of me.

What started out as an idea to explore the history of The Last of Us Part II has (in a Naughty Dog-like fashion) turned into something more ambitious than I anticipated. I want to take a look at Naughty Dog’s PS4 legacy; analyze their game design, explore their developmental history, and compile it all in one place. The Last of Us Part II didn’t just happen out of thin air. It is a sum of years of hard work, lessons learned, and the tireless pursuit of perfectionism.

Continue reading “Chasing the Stick: The History of Naughty Dog during the PS4 Era”

The History of Naughty Dog during the PS4 Era

Welcome to the audiobook version of Chasing the Stick: The History of Naughty Dog during the PS4 Era.

What started out as an idea to explore the history of The Last of Us Part II has (in a Naughty Dog-like fashion) turned into something more ambitious than I anticipated. I want to take a look at Naughty Dog’s PS4 legacy; analyze their game design, explore their developmental history, and compile it all in one place. The Last of Us Part II didn’t just happen out of thin air. It is a sum of years of hard work, lessons learned, and the tireless pursuit of perfectionism.

How did Naughty Dog actually pull it off though? What lessons did they learn, implement, and explore on the PS4? What did it cost their team, both personally and professionally? How has their PS4 catalog defined the studio in a way no previous generation has?

Chasing the Stick is also available online at MaxFrequency.net and as an e-book. Check out the links below to download your preferred format for free.

Website

Chasing the Stick: The History of Naughty Dog during the PS4 Era

E-Book

ePub
Mobi
PDF

Charts

Sony First Party Releases
Sony First Party Metacritic Scores
Sony First Party Metacritic Averages
Sony First Party Metacritic Averages with Three or More Releases

Sources

Raindrop.io Bookmark Folder with all cited sources

You may reach out to me on Twitter @MaxRoberts143 or via e-mail at max@maxfrequency(dot)net

Exploring Development Time for Naughty Dog’s PlayStation Catalog

While writing Chasing the Stick: The History of Naughty Dog during the PS4 Era, I noticed that Naughty Dog has not had an unannounced project since Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception. Shortly after Uncharted 3’s release, The Last of Us was announced. Then Uncharted was teased for PS4 alongside The Last of Us: Left Behind’s trailer. Then the studio confirmed DLC for Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End before its release in May 2016. That DLC turned into Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, which was revealed alongside The Last of Us Part II. For nearly a decade, the public has had some inclination of what Naughty Dog is working on.

I thought it’d be interesting to explore the length of time between announcement and release for Naughty Dog’s games that I cover in Chasing the Stick. Then I thought why not include all the PS3 generation titles. Then I just decided to do every Naughty Dog PlayStation title. There is quite the range…

Some factors that played into how I came to these numbers:

  • These numbers are not indicative of total development time. It’s purely reflective of the time from public announcement to public release.
  • As far as I could tell, every game up until Jak 3 was announced at E3, typically the year of its release. This naturally creates a shorter period of time.
  • For those E3 reveals, I simply chose the first day of E3 that particular year. Locking in a specific reveal date became much easier the closer we got to the mid 2000s.

From the PS1 generation through the PS2 generation, Naughty Dog was consistent at shorter turnarounds post-announcement. It wouldn’t be until the PS3 with Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune that the time to release would more than double. The choice to completely recreate their game engine for the PS3 alongside the learning curve of the hardware itself obviously lent itself to this increase. Naughty Dog was doing something they had never attempted before.

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves and Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception have much shorter turnarounds, presumably due to fitting into a groove, having an engine in place, and a focus on where to take the game instead of trying to actually build the game. Looking at Uncharted 3 next to The Last of Us can give us a rough idea of overall development time though. Both games began their development at the same time since the studio split into two teams after Uncharted 2. New IP on the PS3 took an extraordinary amount of time compared to PS1 and PS2 development.

The sudden drop in time is The Last of Us Remastered for the PS4. Naughty Dog used this as a project to port their engine over to the PS4 from the PS3, instead of recreating an engine just for the PS4. This project was announced not long before release, which gives it the lowest date range out of all Naughty Dog’s titles.

The PS4 was a generation where Naughty Dog was completely transparent about what they were working on. They may not have kept fans up-to-date regularly, but there was never a question of what game the studio was working on. Due to this transparency, the range in days once again nearly doubled. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End was riddled with challenges during development. While not reinventing the Uncharted franchise, the team did have to beef up their engine and create entirely new elements, assets, and mechanics. This was no ordinary sequel like Uncharted 2 and Uncharted 3 were.

On the flip side, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy was like Uncharted 2 & Uncharted 3 in the sense that the elements, assets, and mechanics were mostly there. This allowed the team to create a game in nearly one third of the time.

And now for The Last of Us Part II. This game has an odd accumulation of factors. It’s a new console generation sequel, like Uncharted 4 was to the PS3 trilogy. Unlike The Lost Legacy, it appears that most of these assets were made specifically for The Last of Us Part II. The sequel was also revealed the same night as The Lost Legacy, so when that development demanded more of the Naughty Dog team, work on The Last of Us Part II slowed. The Last of Us Part II also has the advantage of any previous development lessons learned so far in the PS4 generation. The game also seems to embrace the widest design of a Naughty Dog game yet. The bigger the game, the more time it should take.

This exploration of development didn’t make it into Chasing the Stick—I just thought of it this morning. But I thought it’d be a fun thing to dig into before I publish my full history this Friday, June 5. I go over Naughty Dog’s entire history from 2013 to today, talking about their developmental timelines, work place practices, and leadership changes while sprinkling in my own editorial thoughts and comments. I am stoked to share it all with you very soon.

For the record, from announcement to publication, Chasing the Stick will be 74 days.

Chasing the Stick Announcement Trailer

Update (06/05/2020): It is live.

Chasing the Stick is the story of video game developer Naughty Dog. It tells how they make their games with the unified goal of telling the story on the joystick. From The Last of Us to the PS5, Chasing the Stick tells the story of one of the video game industry’s most renowned and prolific developers.

Direct Download – Apple Podcasts – Google Podcasts – SpotifyOvercastCastroPocket Casts – RSS Feed

A couple of months ago at the end of March 2020, I announced this new project called Chasing the Stick. It would be the definitive history of Naughty Dog and their time working on the PlayStation 4. Covering the years 2013-2020, I have researched, analyzed, and critiqued the catalog that Naughty Dog has developed within one console generation. My transcription skills have gotten pretty good, if I do say so myself.

The end of the project is in sight. I plan to click the publish button on June 5, 2020. I chose that date for two reasons: It happens to be two weeks before the release of The Last of Us Part II and it also happens to be my birthday.

Chasing the Stick has turned into more than a lengthy editorial for my website. I have also turned it into an e-book and audiobook. It has been completely self-produced and published.

It will also be entirely free.

You will be able to download the e-book as a .epub or .mobi file. These can be added to your phone or Kindle reader quite easily. The audiobook will be available as a podcast through major podcast providers and as a direct download. I narrated the entire audiobook. It is the same experience no matter where you read (or listen) to Chasing the Stick. Everything will be available on MaxFrequency.net.

Chasing the Stick is part essay, part research, part history, part editorial, and part critical analysis. It is a celebration of my favorite video game developer. I’ve channeled all my excitement and energy for The Last of Us Part II into this story over the past four months. I cannot wait to share this all with you.

Sony has Delayed The Last of Us Part II Indefinitely

Update: SIE has made the difficult decision to delay the launch of The Last of Us Part II and Marvel’s Iron Man VR until further notice. Logistically, the global crisis is preventing us from providing the launch experience our players deserve.

PlayStation via Twitter on April 2, 2020

It was only a matter of time given the current global climate concerning COVID-19. It is the right call.

Jason Schreier reports that the game was on track for its May release. Naughty Dog made a statement providing a bit of context. The decision was made for the safety of all involved and to make sure their game was released simultaneously for all fans to enjoy the game. Sony did upload some new screen shots of the game, but then oddly removed them later in the afternoon. My pal Logan downloaded them and published them on DualShockers, if you care to look.

The interesting bit of conversation is how it impacts Ghost of Tsushima. Will it also be delayed? Or will The Last of Us Part II be released after Ghost of Tsushima? Sony has no other future delay announcements to make at this time. Iron Man VR was also delayed alongside The Last of us Part II. You better believe this will be a part of Chasing the Stick.

Announcing Chasing the Stick

I’ve been writing the history of Naughty Dog during the PS4 era. It is far and away the largest editorial I have ever written. I’ve been working on it for a month now (two months if you count replaying the Uncharted series in my research) and still have another two to go, if The Last of Us Part II releases on time in May. I’ve wigged out my pal Logan by sharing the ever increasing word count.

It started out as “I should write a history on The Last of Us Part II.” Not an entirely foreign format for myself: I wrote a history on The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and one for Super Smash Bros. before Ultimate released. I love chronicling and researching games. I’ve been doing it since I made Power Points to convince my parents I was old enough to play Zelda and Pokémon.

My curiosity swelled my ambition. So it has turned into a history, analysis, and commentary on my all-time favorite game studio and their development during the years 2013-2020. I can’t wait to share it with you around the time The Last of Us Part II releases. Thanks.

Uncharted 3’s Chateau and the Art of Escalation

Since I bought my new TV, I’ve been amped for Naughty Dog’s PS4 swan song The Last Of Us Part II. I replayed The Last Of Us last year, but wanted to scratch that Naughty Dog itch before Part II this May. Thankfully, I haven’t played the main Uncharted games since 2016. I only played Lost Legacy when it released in 2017. To top it all off, I’ve never seen what Naughty Dog has been capable of in 4K HDR. Now seemed like the perfect time to replay one of my favorite series.

I’ve always had the opinion that the Chateau in Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception is the best set piece in the entire series. Over the train, over the cruise ship, over the many caravans, I have always placed the Chateau on top. Having just played it again for the fourth or fifth time, I thought I’d break down why I believe that.

The Chateau perfectly captures the entirety of the Uncharted experience. From narrative design with the classic relationship dynamics, unnatural twists, and grand spectacle to the core pillars of gameplay; puzzle solving, combat arenas, and platforming. It is Uncharted distilled down to 90 or so minutes. And due to this distillation, the entire set paced marvelously: elevating it above the rest of what the series offers.

I want to go through the entire set piece and chart out why I believe the Chateau is the best Uncharted has to offer.

The chapters kick off with Nate and Sully arriving in a jungle in the middle of France. There’s no threat, just navigating the space to find a way to the chateau in the distance. This setting allows Nate and Sully reminisce and have their signature banter. Coming off of Uncharted 2, this dialogue and time was sorely missed. Uncharted 3 is a Nate and Sully journey from the get go and the beginning of this level allows for fans to soak in their storied history. It’s a real treat.

Once you arrive at the manor itself, the platforming and puzzle solving begin. Climb your way inside and the first platforming puzzle presents itself. A straight forward affair, you use a pair of chandeliers to reach an upper platform that allows you to open a door to progress.

Beyond this door is more Nate and Sully quality time while quietly exploring the interior of the overgrown house. Naughty Dog shows off their visual design chops as you navigate this dilapidated home. You’ll eventually arrive in a room with a fireplace and four sets of armor.

This is the first “notebook” puzzle. Using Nate/T.E. Lawrence’s notebook, you’ll rotate suits of armor to reveal a secret passage behind a fireplace. The notebook and platforming puzzles, so far, get players into the head space of Uncharted’s frameworks. These ancient places are navigational puzzle boxes to explore and solve.

On the other side of the secret passage, Nate is separated from Sully and falls down into an underground ravine area. The environmental design drapes the cave walls in sticky cobwebs. The mood turns eery. When squeezing through a gap, a few large spiders descend on Drake, but are quickly removed when he stumbles into a pool of water. The rest of this ravine involves navigating the water, flushing the thought of spiders into the back of your mind. Soon enough you find a wall to climb up toward the light. At the top, you emerge into the first combat arena of the level.

Effortlessly led straight into danger, the tension of the level tightens. The villain has somehow tracked Nate and their edge is lost. But, Nate’s enemies are not aware you are right beneath them inside the well. As the player, this puts you in an esoteric position giving you a combative edge. While nearly every combat scenario in Uncharted games up to this point results in open-fire, the option to silently eliminate enemies at the start allows you both the satisfaction of having knowledge the enemy does not and easing into the new difficulty.

After clearing out the area by the well, you are led to a brief tutorial with grenades. After a couple of well instructed explosions, you emerge into a courtyard where Sully is pinned down. With another quick shoot out over and behind you, the pace shifts back toward the puzzle headspace. This stretch of combat has elevated the stakes in both the narrative and the gameplay. The threat of Marlowe’s men is looming like the electrical charge in the air before a storm. The distant clap of thunder to remind you of the impending storm takes the shape of a rotten corpse belonging to one of Talbot’s men; decaying far too quickly for someone who just arrived. The shift back to puzzles gives you time to breath, keep your tension in check, and ponder your narrative situation.

Nate and Sully soon find a small room with Sabean script laid out on the floor. You’ll flip open Nate’s all-knowing notebook and use the pattern inside to determine the order of tiles you need to walk across. I like this puzzle because it warms you up for what lies ahead. It takes your headspace completely out of combat and gives it all back to puzzle solving.

Yet another secret passage reveals itself, this time to a laboratory where alchemy was practice by the occult’s number one fan, John Dee. The underlying pulse of the unnatural speeds up when you slide the altar table/work surface to reveal a shaft down to the family crypt. This unnatural element had always been a part of Uncharted up to this point and Naughty Dog dropping these breadcrumbs throughout the Chateau feeds that narrative appetite. Your imagination starts to run with the possibilities of what is to come.

Inside the crypt is the most intricate puzzle for the level. Combining elements of the previous puzzles, you have to figure out the placement of four animal crests on a checkerboard of Sabean script by manipulating the light around reflective panels on the floor. I think this puzzle is one of the series’ stronger ones due to how it weaves pattern solving, “block” sliding, the notebook, and manipulating the environment to come up with the solution. It’s not a head scratcher—Uncharted is not about stumping its players—but it is fun to solve. It also brings the puzzles of the Chateau to a satisfying peak, brining this element of Uncharted to a close.

Past the crypt puzzle, Drake and Sully find what they came for. In a very “Last Crusade” like moment, a knight of old guards the key to an ancient city, but only half of it. Upon emerging from the hidden burial location, big bad henchman #1, Talbot, arrives and snatches the all-important amulet. That’s when the spiders return in full force.

Talbot locks the duo in the crypt with the rapidly expanding hoard of spiders. Naughty Dog ushers you into one of their signature rear-facing chases. The threat racing behind, you run toward the screen, unsure of where you are going and only knowing where you’ve been. A small touch in the chase is when Sully trips ahead of you and Nate will stop to pick him up. The importance of their relationship is reaffirmed despite there being this wave of deadly spiders that escalates the excitement and tension to new heights.

The game offers a brief reprieve after the chase for Nate, Sully, and yourself. Around the corner, the grand finale awaits.

From your vantage point on the second floor, you can see Talbot’s men below pouring gasoline all over the premises. The stakes (and player thrill) spike back up immediately. A shootout begins right away, but it cannot stop a fire from being ignited. The Chateau begins to become engulfed in flames.

It is here that platforming and gunplay come together to elevate the set piece beyond what one gameplay system would do alone. There is a frantic nature to finding out where you need to go to avoid the flames, while also dealing with the bad guys popping off shots at every turn. You’ll duke it out with a massive brute, you’ll duck and cover against lackies with all sorts of guns: all with the urgency to escape the building that is burning and collapsing around you.

After clearing the foyer, you’ll begin to climb a set of stairs with the fire licking at your heels from below. Nate’s foot will get stuck and force you to quickly kill two enemies while Sully dislodges your foot. Near the top, the stairs collapse. Nate and Sully hang from the burning banister. Right after gaining their footing on the banister, the whole thing falls down again and forces you to make a final climb up before the whole stair set is swallowed.

A few more enemies stand in your way before you make your way to the roof. The entire Chateau is burning to the ground. You run away from the collapsing tower, chunks of the roof crumbling beneath your feet. In classic action movie fashion, you leap away from the explosion and slide down a gutter to land on the ground in one piece.

The duo recuperates and Sully questions Nate’s pride and motivation in this treasure hunt. It is a moment of discord in what should be a celebratory moment, even if only for their lives. It doesn’t take long for it to dawn on them that their friends Chloe and Cutter may be in the same danger on their mission in Syria, encouraging players to stick around for the next level.

The entirety of the Chateau level escalates marvelously. From the friendly jaunt in the jungle to barely escaping a burning chateau, Naughty Dog paces the whole affair with the cadence that defines Uncharted. It contains all the key elements of Uncharted’s signature gameplay and story telling, while proving Naughty Dog knew the PlayStation hardware better than anyone at the time. The Chateau is refined, elegant, ambitious, all while encompassing the soul of a beloved series. There are grander set pieces throughout the series, but I don’t think you will find one more polished than the Chateau.

Reaction to The Last Of Us Part II

Wow. What a day in the gaming world for me. Today, on Dec. 3, 2016, The Last Of Us Part II was revealed at PSX.

As I lie here in my bed writing this up, eight hours after the reveal, a panel, and writing two news stories, the announcement still doesn’t seem quite real. Naughty Dog is my favorite developer in the business. This year they released my new favorite game of all time Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, which bumped my previous favorite (you guessed it), The Last Of Us down to number two. Which is such an unfair and dumb thing to even do or say. Both are utterly incredible experiences. I even reviewed The Last Of Us here on the blog.

If you want to read what the game is about, check out my two news stories: This one is about the reveal itself, while this one is about the panel the director and cast later in the day. You can watch the trailer for the game above.

This post is more to acknowledge my feelings about the game and its announcement. I’m a mess. Continue reading “Reaction to The Last Of Us Part II”

Left Behind Live Stream Schedule

Here is the final schedule for the live stream and giveaway. The trivia for the prizes will happen during the show itself; not during the pre and post shows. Winners will be emailed there codes after the show.

March 4, 2014
All of the times below are EST

5:00-6:00 PM- Pre-Show; Multiplayer and general discussion
6:00-9:00 PM- Show; A full live stream of the Left Behind DLC for The Last Of Us (end time subject to changing if play through takes less or more time)
9:00-11:00 PM- Post-Show; Multiplayer with fans and friends!

If you would like to play factions after the main stream with me, tweet at @GoLeftGaming your PSN and I can add you into the party. If the list is larger than four, a rotation pattern will be implemented. Microphones are encouraged for multiplayer! Hope to see you on Go Left Gaming’s Twitch channelschedule!!

Left Behind Live Stream- 03/04/14 Details

Welcome! Wow, this is the first post of 2014. I’m sorry if this seems a little late, but I have such exciting news! Go Left Gaming has been pushing the multimedia aspect of journalism on its YouTube and Twitch channels. Content includes weekly vlogs, live streams, and walk through videos. It’s super exciting to be creating the content and learning about this aspect of the industry. As a part of this multimedia push, Go Left Gaming is hosting a live stream of The Last Of Us‘ DLC, Left Behind and the factions multiplayer mode!

Left_Behind

The stream will be held on March 4, 2014 at 6:00 PM EST! That is when I will start the Left Behind DLC from start to finish with all the collectibles and conversations. This will be a ton of fun. A little bit before and for quite some time after the DLC, I will play The Last Of Us online multiplayer.

Also, as a part of the stream, to share my love of The Last Of Us and it’s brand new DLC there will be a giveaway! A total of three prizes will be given away! There are-

1) The entire American Dreams prequel comic series (4 issues in total)

2) The Left Behind DLC

and the grand prize-

3)  The Last Of Us season pass (which includes Left Behind, all the multiplayer DLC, and the documentary) AND the American Dreams prequel comic series

How the winners will be decided and the details of the contest will be set in concrete at a later time, but those are the prizes!

You can RSVP for the event on our Facebook page or just click here! Hope to see you on March 4, 2014 at 6:00 PM EST on Go Left Gaming’s Twitch channel for Left Behind!

Under the Radar PS4 Games– PS4 Week

It truly is an exciting time to be a gamer. The next generation of console gaming is upon us. Hundreds of games are being made for both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. With the launch of the PS4 just one day away, I invited Mitchell Morgan to write a piece for Go Left Gaming’s PS4 Launch Week. Mitchell decided to about the games you need to keep on your radar, despite the lack of news and being over shadowed by huge first-party launch titles. So without further ado, here are games you need to keep an eye on.

Under The Radar PS4 Games

By Mitchell Morgan

Continue reading “Under the Radar PS4 Games– PS4 Week”

DualShock 4 Unboxing & Impressions– PS4 Week

Sony has taken an interesting route during the week’s building up to the PlayStation 4’s launch. They have removed the street dates on all titles and peripherals, allowing consumers to go buy what they would like before the PS4 is out. In my opinion, this is a smart move. It builds even more hype for the launch, letting gamers stare at game boxes and useless add-ons. But there is one that is not entirely useless. That would be the DualShock 4, the brand new controller for Sony’s new system. Customers may buy the DualShock 4 and hold it and get a real taste of what the next generation will feel like. BEYOND that, the DS4 even works with the PS3 in some capacity, allowing users to play first-party games with the controller plugged in. This is the closest taste the public has to the next generation’s feel and let me tell you it feels mighty good.

Continue reading “DualShock 4 Unboxing & Impressions– PS4 Week”

#PlayStationMemories– PS4 Week

#PlayStationMemories

By Max Roberts

Just moments after I sat down to write this nostalgic article, my girlfriend found a micro USB cable at her house. That was the crucial piece I needed to make my brand new DualShock 4 controller work with my PS3, just a mere sixteen days before the PlayStation 4 launch in North America. That was over an hour ago. Today was a #PlayStationMemory for me.

Back on February 20, 2013, Sony had a press conference to reveal the future of PlayStation. The hype was palpable all over the web. Memories and nostalgia swept through gamers like a tidal wave and a hashtag was created to share those intimate moments gamers had with PlayStation; #PlayStationMemories. The hashtag took Twitter by storm and everyone was BEYOND excited for the new hardware reveal.

Then 25 days before the launch in North America, Sony released a commercial of sorts, inspired by the viral hashtag. The video was titled #4thePlayers.

The video took gamers on a long trip down memory lane, taking the hype for the next generation of PlayStation to new heights.

Now here we are, just FOUR days away from Sony’s next home console. New memories are bound to be born as the next generation of console gaming takes flight, but I wanted to take a moment and take one more good long look back on gaming with PlayStation throughout the years. I want to share with you my five favorite gaming memories with PlayStation at their core. Let’s look back in time at all the crazy adventures I’ve had with Sony by my side.

Continue reading “#PlayStationMemories– PS4 Week”

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves Review

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves Review

By Max Roberts

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is bold. Uncharted 2 not only proves that Drake is here to stay, but that video games can be ambitious. Featuring world traveling set pieces and an intense, beautiful cinematic story, Uncharted 2 raises the bar, not only for future Uncharted games, but for the industry as a whole. Improving the game’s core third person shooting and platforming mechanics, Naughty Dog pushes Uncharted to the edge. It’s a stunning achievement and nearly five years later, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves still shines.

Uncharted_2_Logo

Continue reading “Uncharted 2: Among Thieves Review”