Gaming

New colors for PS5 DualSense controllers, console covers

Coming in 2022!

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PS5

From just white to a multitude of colors — Sony PlayStation just splashed the PlayStation 5 with various color options. The additions are: Nova Pink, Starlight Blue, and Galactic Purple. The colors are available both as console covers and DualSense controllers.

The trifecta of new colors for the DualSense join the earlier announced Cosmic Red and Midnight Black.

All five colors are available as face plates for the PS5 — both the Disc and Digital editions. These will all be globally available starting January 14, 2022.

The Midnight Black and Cosmic Red PS5 console covers will become available starting starting January 21, 2022 at Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, and coming soon in February 2022 at the Philippines.

The Nova Pink, Galactic Purple, and Starlight Blue PS5 console covers will also launch in these locations during the first half of 2022. The PS5 console covers will launch in additional territories during the year.

Pricing are as follows:

  • DualSense controllers — PhP 4,290 / SG$ 107 / MYR 369 / IDR 1,359,000 / THB 2,590 / VND 2,099,000
  • PS5 console covers — PhP 3,090 / SG$ 79.9 / MYR 259 / IDR 939,000 / THB 1,890 / VND 1,499,000

Gaming

Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection review

Is it worth the upgrade?

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Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection

The Uncharted franchise has been a PlayStation darling ever since it came out on the PlayStation 3. The series wrapped up Nathan Drake’s story in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End and spun off a new adventure with some supporting casts on Uncharted: Lost Legacy on the PlayStation 4. Both titles get a new lease of life with a PlayStation 5 remaster called Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection just in time for the showing of the Uncharted film. 

It’s a no-brainer that this remaster’s release was timed to coincide with the film. In fact, in some locations, tickets to the film are part of the promotion. But what exactly does this remaster have to offer and will it make you watch the film? These are what I’ll try to answer here. 

My first Uncharted 

There’s no shortage of breathtaking sceneries like this throughout the game.

Unlike many who played the two games part of this remastered collection, this is my first encounter with the franchise. It’s a shame, but I was dealing with life during the entire PlayStation 3 generation. Can’t really blame me. I digress. 

Given that, you can imagine how blown my mind was after going through Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection. It’s the definitive action-movie-that-you-can-play experience, reaffirming my love for the action genre. Naughty Dog did away with staple game elements like skill trees and levelling up in favor of a balls-to-the-walls action adventure, beautiful set pieces, great dialogue, and characters you’ll grow attached with. 

I watched a few recaps of the first three Uncharted games to get myself acquainted. And while it wasn’t enough to fill me in entirely on the franchise’s lore, it played its role in making me somewhat familiar with the game. 

A quick overview 

I’ll keep this whole thing relatively spoiler-free to preserve the experience for those like me who haven’t played the game before. But what exactly is going in these two games? 

Uncharted: A Thief’s End is the fourth installment of the franchise and neatly wraps up the story of main character Nathan Drake. In this game, he has left his treasure hunting days behind and is living a relatively normal life with his wife Elena Fisher. 

However, a certain figure from his past re-enters his life and forces his hand. He joins this person in the hunt for Pirate Henry Avery’s lost treasure. What follows is a dose of high-octane action featuring wall climbing, gun fights, and more. 

Meanwhile, Uncharted: Lost Legacy focuses on supporting characters from the previous games. You play as Chloe Frazer – treasure hunter and former flame of one Nathan Drake. Here, she’s accompanied by one of A Thief’s End’s antagonists, Nadine Ross. 

It’s an unlikely pairing and one that was tense at the start but finds its footing as you go around rainforests in India in search of the Tusk of Ganesh. It plays similarly to A Thief’s End but with new weapons such as a silenced pistol. There’s also a new mechanic that lets you go back into stealth mode if you hide long and well enough after an encounter with the bad guys. 

So, what’s new? 

Like many PS4 games remastered for the PS5, Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection adds familiar upgrades we’ve seen implemented in the past year. These are faster (practically non-existent load times), graphical improvements, 3D audio implementation, and taking advantage of the Dual Sense controller. 

Visual improvements

Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection

The way the light behaves is an absolute marvel

In terms of graphical improvements, there are three modes you can play in. These are Fidelity, Performance, and Performance+. These breakdown as follows: 

  • Fidelity – Plays at native 4K with a 30fps frame rate
  • Performance – Prioritizes a 60fps frame rate
  • Performance+ – Pushes frame rate to 120fps but at only a 1080p resolution

Personally, the TV I use doesn’t support 120fps so I primarily played in Performance mode. Initially, I tried Fidelity mode which is what I thought would be best given my experience with Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart. But the Uncharted games are more action-focused, players will benefit from a smoother frame rate. 

Nearly every scene looks and feels like a cinematic

Fidelity mode certainly gives you that blockbuster motion picture feel especially during cinematics. However, the shift from cinematics to gameplay appears more pronounced which can be a little bit jarring. Additionally, the gameplay action doesn’t feel as dynamic in this mode. 

Performance mode, meanwhile, has a more seamless cinematic to gameplay transition. In fact, during the first few hours of the game, I caught myself standing around thinking I was still in a cinematic. The picture looks smoother without losing much in terms of the movie-like experience.The frame rate was consistent throughout with zero lag or jaggedness. 

If your TV supports it, it might be worth your while to shift over to Performance+ mode. The high frame rate will certainly aid in the inevitable gun combat sequences. 

3D Audio and Dual Sense

The 3D audio and Dual Sense additions were really pronounced during parts of the game when it was raining. At the time, I was playing at night with the windows closed. I really thought it was raining outside, but it really was just in game. And I wasn’t even playing with headphones on! 

While raining, you can feel the Dual Sense control rumble a little bit as if it was being hit with raindrops. The controls also affect the trigger buttons where there’s a heavier, more pronounced feeling when you’re pressing R2 to fire guns. There are plenty of more subtle but definitely noticeable implementations that add to the overall experience. 

The Dual Sense was also pretty useful in these lock pick sections

The Dual Sense improvements are also felt during the driving sections of the game. Not only do you feel the terrain as you move around. The trigger buttons also react to whatever surface you’re trying to traverse giving more resistance where appropriate. 

Is it worth the upgrade or new purchase? 

There’s incredible, edge-of-your-seat action throughout

I’ll speak first from my experience. As someone who played the games for the first time on a PS5, it was definitely one hell of a gaming experience. If these are titles you skipped from the previous generation or you just jumped into gaming consoles on the PS5, this is certainly worth every penny. 

Playing the included games alone is already a treat. But the PS5 improvements elevates everything by engaging more of your senses as you play. 

Local pricing isn’t available yet but it’s already listed for pre-order in the US. It’ll set you back US$ 49.99. The upgrades are a little trickier. 

Here’s the detailed information from the PlayStation blog.

  • Players who purchased Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, or Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End & Uncharted: The Lost Legacy Digital Bundle have the option to pay 10/€10 to upgrade to Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Digital Version. The upgrade will be available starting at launch on January 28, 2022.
  • Owners of PS4 disc copies must insert them into the PS5 every time they want to download or play the PS5 digital versions. PS4 game disc owners who buy the PS5 Digital Edition disc-free console will not be able to get the PS5 version for the discounted price.
  • PlayStation Plus members who claimed Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End via their PlayStation Plus subscription are not eligible for the $10/€10 digital PS5 upgrade.

In certain territories, purchasing or upgrading gives you a free ticket to watch the Uncharted film starring Tom Holland (Nathan Drake) and Mark Wahlberg (Sullivan). That’s certainly a nice incentive. Asked if the promo will be implemented in Southeast Asia, PlayStation said they are still ironing out details with Sony Films as of the time this was published.

It’s hard for me to make any definitive recommendation on this situation. The US$ 10 may be better spent as an addition to purchase any new games you may be eyeing. But if you have that extra mount, the upgrade doesn’t hurt at all. 

One thing is true, whether you’re jumping in fresh or are looking dive in for another playthrough the games in Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection are certainly worth the time and experience.  

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Gaming

Microsoft launches limited Year of the Tiger Xbox Series S

Only 15 units available

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Do you have either of the new gaming consoles? More than a year since their launch, a lot of gamers are still struggling to own these must-own devices because of shortages and scalping. Now, if getting any of the regular models is still a struggle for you, then you’ll hate this new version. Microsoft is celebrating the Chinese New Year with a special Year of the Tiger edition of the Xbox Series S.

Just how hard is it to get one of these things? Well, Microsoft is making only 15 units of this special edition. Plus, you can only get one through a special sweepstakes from WeChat and bilibili China. If you’re in the area, the entry period has already started.

Though it doesn’t tout any new hardware features, the Lunar New Year Xbox Series S comes with a special design from Chinese cartoon artist Bu2ma. Naturally, the console and controller combo shines in brilliant red with astonishing tiger motifs in black. They also have golden Chinese lettering signifying the zodiac sign.

Lunar New Year partnerships are always fun. Besides Microsoft, other brands are also celebrating the occasion with their own limited editions of their products. The yearly occasion usually brings out impressive collaborations resulting in highly limited editions of popular products.

SEE ALSO: Xbox creates a SpongeBob-themed Xbox Series X

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Blizzard announces new, unnamed survival game

Follows call for designers and engineers

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Blizzard, once regaled as a darling child of the gaming world, has not released a new franchise since the still-thriving Overwatch universe. Now, many years after Overwatch’s launch, the gaming company has announced an unnamed survival game taking place in a new universe.

Tweeted by Blizzard’s official Twitter account, the announcement clearly depicts a fantasy world unlike anything else on Blizzard’s gallery of games. However, instead of an incredibly fresh fantasy world like Warcraft’s universe, another graphic depicts two people in modern-day garb with a modern-day bicycle. Going solely off these two graphics, the upcoming game will likely mix real-world elements with fantasy ones.

However, though the graphics can clearly paint such a conclusion, there is no indication that these pictures depict anything related to the unnamed franchise. Besides confirming the game, the announcement comes with a call for more employees to work on the universe. The game is likely still in its early stages.

Regardless, the description is quite clear. It’s a survival game. If it follows the current zeitgeist of survival games, it’s Blizzard’s first time in the genre.

Blizzard’s timing is interesting. Activision Blizzard is currently going through quite a rough patch. The company’s workers have recently put the leadership on notice for fostering a toxic working environment. Besides that, Microsoft recently purchased the entire company. Amid controversy, Activision Blizzard is in a transitional phase, finding its footing for its next phase.

SEE ALSO: Microsoft buys Activision Blizzard for nearly US$ 70B

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