Happy Friday, everyone! Welcome to Bonus Round, a look at some of the week’s biggest gaming stories. It’s been a big week for survival horror, with our first proper looks at gameplay from the upcoming Resident Evil 4 and Dead Space remakes. But they’re not the only classic horror game returning from the dead. Let’s get into it!
Silent Hill announcements
As was rumoured earlier in the year, there’s a whole bunch of new Silent Hill games coming our way. There hasn’t been a new game in the iconic survival horror franchise since 2012, but publisher Konami announced four new games and a movie in a stream on Wednesday.
The biggest news is that fan favourite Silent Hill 2 is being remade for modern hardware. Developed by Bloober Team (of The Medium fame), the remake doesn’t have a release date but will eventually be released on PS5 and PC. This looks to be a ground-up remake of Silent Hill, with gorgeous graphics, new voice work and music, and a new over the shoulder perspective to replace the original version’s fixed camera angles.
Konami also announced Silent Hill: Ascension, a multiplayer choose-your-own-adventure game. We don’t have many more details on this but it seems like it could be in the vein of Until Dawn or The Quarry. We’re also getting spin-offs Silent Hill: Downfall from Annapurna Interactive and Silent Hill f from Japanese writer Ryukishi07. Not enough Silent Hill for you? There’s also a new movie coming called Return to Silent Hill, helmed by director of the original Silent Hill movie Christophe Gans.
Like I said in May, I’ve never played any of the Silent Hill games, but it seems like I’ll be spoiled for choice in the coming years. It’s certainly a bold strategy to announce a glut of games after a decade without new Silent Hill. It continues a new trend in the gaming industry, which is to announce an entire slate of games that may be years away. We’ll see if it’s too much too soon when Konami starts to release these games.
Gotham Knights and A Plague Tale launch without 60fps modes
If you asked me what I love most about my PS5, it’s the ability to play almost every game at 60fps. That, to me, is the most important upgrade of this new console generation. Options for native 4K or ray-tracing are nice, but nothing beats the smoothness of 60fps for me. I’ll choose ‘performance mode’ every time.
So it was disappointing to learn this week that two big new games have launched without 60fps modes. A Plague Tale: Requiem and Gotham Knights launched on 18 October and 21 October respectively, and both are capped at 30fps on consoles. PC players have had more luck getting higher frame rates, but it seems that the frame rates are still unstable on anything less than the beefiest graphics cards.
I’m not a game developer so take what I say with a pinch of salt, but I don’t see why these games couldn’t theoretically run at 60fps on PS5 and Xbox Series X. There are many better looking, more complex games that have offered perfectly stable performance modes. It could well be the case that these games simply aren’t properly optimised for their hardware. Even so, it’s concerning to get two games like this in one week when we’re still so early in the generation. I hope it doesn’t mark the start of a trend this early.
DualSense Edge price and release date announced
Sony announced a release date and price for its premium DualSense Edge PS5 controller on Tuesday. The new DualSense, which offers multiple customisation options, will launch globally on 26 January and will cost UK gamers a cool £209.99.
Being level-headed about this, there are undoubtedly some highly competitive gamers who will be able to justify this cost. The high-end Xbox Elite controller has been very popular among a certain class of gamer that takes their performance in multiplayer games seriously. There is a market, however small, for a controller that lets gamers reassign buttons or swap out analog sticks means to configure it to their exact needs.
Now, if you’ll allow me to stop being level-headed for a moment: £209.99, what the fuck?! I had expected that this controller would be pricey, but I didn’t expect Sony to charge half the cost of a PS5. I was starting to develop a passing interest in the DualSense Edge but I’ve been cured of it now. I don’t think I’ll be alone in that, either. This controller isn’t aimed at the masses, and that’s okay, but this price point will be a hard barrier to cross for anyone who is moderately curious about upgrading their gameplay experience.