News Opinion

News Wrapup: 18/4/17

Halo Wars comes to Steam, Sony server shutdowns and a new Heroes of the Storm map.

Halo Wars: Definitive Edition coming to Steam on April 21.

Real time strategy game Halo Wars will be making its way onto the Steam marketplace on April 21. A “definitive edition” of the game was released on the Windows 10 Store and Xbox One in December last year to coincide with the release of Halo Wars 2. Microsoft are now bringing the definitive edition to other PC gamers but will again split their userbase as crossplay between Windows 10 and Steam will not be supported.

Opinion: As the resident Halo fan, Nelson thought that Halo Wars was a good game but it lacked competitive balance with most matches online leading to the exact same builds. Either way it makes sense to me to bring the RTS game to PC as that is where these types of games are best served. Unfortunately, Microsoft seem obsessed with separating the Windows 10 and Steam communities and I really can’t see how that benefits them. While it means they have greater control of their games it just splits the community and with games like Halo Wars that is something that just can’t happen. Starcraft 2 is struggling as it is let alone Halo Wars.

New Heroes of the Storm map changes things up.

The new Heroes of the Storm map Hanamura has coincided with an Overwatch mechanic making its way into HOTS. The new map has two payloads for each team that can be pushed by friendly units to make turrets to help take out the enemy base. Hanamura is also the name of the Japanese Overwatch map, but ironically that map does not have any payloads.

Opinion: I always like to see new ideas enter the MOBA arena. While there is charm and simplicity in Summoner’s Rift in League of Legends, it is rigid and designed for competitive play. It is nice to have a change now and then and payloads will create new objectives to control on the battlefield as you will have to balance pushing your own carts and preventing the opponents.

Sony shuts down servers for Kill Strain, Modnation Racers and four other games.

More server shutdowns have occurred for Sony Computer Entertainment published games. Most prominently are Kill Strain, a PS4 twin stick shooter only released on July 12 2016 and Modnation Racers: Road Trip for the PSVita. Kill Strain under performed critically and will now be rendered useless as it is a multiplayer only game less than one year after being released. Other games to have their online services shut down include High Velocity Bowling, Medieval Moves: Deadmund’s Quest, Sports Champions and Sports Champions 2; all for the PS3. All of these games utilised the PS Move controller.

Opinion: While I feel for any players who were still playing these games online, servers are not free to operate and there may not have been enough players to justify their existence. Kill Strain never made an impact even as a F2P game and the PS Move party games weren’t anything to call home about. It will be interesting to see the future of the Modnation Racers series as I really liked the customisation and racing of the series. The issues were purely loading times which were painful. It’s a series I hope Sony revisits at some point.


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