Soapbox - News

September2017

  • Soapbox Open World OCD - How Too Much Content Can Ruin a Game

    More than enough

    I recently played through the entirety of Dragon Age: Inquisition on PlayStation 4 again. I had never finished all of the expansions, and I had the urge to go back and see how it's held up after three years. When it first launched in 2014, I reviewed it and awarded it a 9/10. It was a high score that, at the time,...

August2017

July2017

  • Soapbox PlayStation Plus Price Hike - Is It Justified?

    Sam Brooke questions the reasons behind the sudden increase

    Two days ago, the PlayStation Plus lineup for August was revealed: Just Cause 3, standalone DLC Assassin’s Creed: Freedom Cry, and the addictive Downwell were all confirmed to be coming to the PlayStation 4 in what could be one of the best ever Instant Game Collection lineups on the...

  • Soapbox You Should Give Evo 2017 a Watch This Weekend

    Ramsey reckons there's fighting game fun to be had

    Watching other people play video games is not something that everyone considers fun. Our very own Sammy Barker scoffs at the idea of gawking at another person's gameplay, and that's totally fine - but you can't really ignore how popular streaming and gaming 'personalities' have become over the last...

June2017

May2017

April2017

  • Soapbox Sony Should Pinch the Nintendo Direct Format

    Sammy reckons there's mileage in Nintendo's marketing

    I did something I rarely do this week: I watched a Nintendo Direct. To be honest, I have a weird relationship with the Big N's pre-recorded events: I've watched the E3 ones before and I've always felt that, for everything they gain in pacing and structure, they lack the kind of energy that you...

March2017

February2017

January2017

  • Soapbox Japan Studio Is Currently One of Sony's Best

    East becomes beast

    Historically when people have talked about Sony's strong first-party network, Japan Studio has been right at the bottom of the list. One of the platform holder's oldest developers, the division is probably best known for the likes of Ape Escape and Legend of Dragoon, as well as Fumito Ueda's output. But during the PlayStation 3...

December2016

November2016

October2016

September2016

August2016

July2016

  • Soapbox Destiny's Grimoire Cards Are Pretty Awesome

    A glimpse at what could have been

    Destiny is famous for a lot of things, but a strong and structured storyline is most definitely not one of them. In fact, it's more renowned for telling you that it doesn't have time for a plot. I'm here to tell you that Destiny actually possesses potentially one of the deepest and most well thought out universes...

June2016

  • Soapbox Let's Be Honest, E3 2016 Was Disappointing

    Sammy's not feeling all that stoked

    In the cold, hard light of day – with more than four hours sleep under my belt – I've come to a bold, brave conclusion: E3 2016 was a bit disappointing, wasn't it? Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed the spectacle of Sony's conference and the banter that accompanied the bad ones – but it's hardly been a vintage...

May2016

April2016

March2016

  • Soapbox Why I Trust Sony to Do the Right Thing with PS4.5

    Sammy Barker's a believer – for now

    Veterans of this website will know that it's rarely been as positive as it is now. Sony, in the pre-PlayStation 4 era, had a tendency to take one step forward and two steps back. Think about it: for every The Last of Us there was a Starhawk; for every forward-thinking initiative like PlayStation Plus there was...

  • Soapbox Evolution Studios Had Miserable Luck But Will Be Greatly Missed

    Sammy Barker says goodbye to a dev with real identity

    There are certain studios that get under your skin, irrespective of output. With the greatest of respect to all of the talented people at production powerhouses like Ubisoft Montreal and EA Canada, said developers don't really exude the kind of identifiable culture that's prevalent at Media...

  • Soapbox Scale Is PlayStation VR's True Game Changer

    Sammy says bigger is always better

    "Shut up about virtual reality already, Sammy," you're probably all screaming at your screens. Sorry, I have been a bit pushy, haven't I? But in my defence, I keep writing about PlayStation VR because I'm genuinely excited about it. No one's paying me to talk about it. I haven't been instructed by my bosses to...

  • Soapbox Why Action Henk and Broforce Have Me Hooked

    Sam Brooke is enamoured with March's PS4 indie arrivals

    I admit it – I have a big soft spot for indie games. Call me weird, but I can't get enough of these low-budget beauties because they're forced to innovate using the limited resources that they have and can create genius new mechanics, or simply refine existing systems to perfection...

  • Soapbox Why Do We Treat Gaming Like a Chore?

    Work, work, work

    I've got to finish it otherwise I'll never clear my backlog. Recognise that? In this instance, 'it' doesn't refer to an important project or a piece of school work – but a game instead. Some of you won't have uttered a sentence like that, but I'd wager that there'll be more of you that have than haven't. The fact is that many of...

February2016

January2016

December2015

November2015

October2015

September2015

July2015

  • Soapbox Why PS4's Indie Influx Isn't as Bad as You Think

    Sam Brooke reckons you should embrace this imaginitive space

    The new Instant Game Collection for PlayStation Plus has been revealed, and once again it contains many indie games. But many people in the PlayStation Nation (are we still called that? I hope not) are a little miffed about the selection – after all, PlayStation 4 players have to pod...

  • Soapbox Why Rocket League Is Perfect for Me

    Ryan Oehrli has re-discovered his love of local multiplayer

    I've never been athletic. I was born with hilariously bad eyesight, my coordination is far below average, and, to be frank, I just don't like sports. As a kid, whenever my Dad would drag me out to the back yard to play catch with him, I would protest, because I knew that I wouldn't catch...

  • Soapbox Here's Why I Will Be Playing Journey on PS4

    With hopes of starting over

    Republished on Tuesday, 21st July 2015: We're bringing this soapbox back from the archives to celebrate Journey's release on the PS4 this week. The original text follows. Originally published on Thursday, 14th August 2014: I understand where Polygon scribe Colin Campbell is coming from when he says that he won't be...

  • Soapbox I Decided to Show My Family Uncharted 4's Incredible Gameplay Demo

    Quality time

    You've all seen the Uncharted 4: A Thief's End E3 2015 gameplay demo by now - or at least, I hope that you have. When I was sat here with editor Sammy Barker, watching Sony's press conference live at 3AM, our already tired brains had been battered by the wealth of megatons that the Japanese company had casually paraded out on stage as...

June2015

  • Soapbox Was E3 2015 Just a Dream?

    Sammy Barker reflects on the greatest of all time

    I'm half expecting to stir from my slumber any minute, clammy after a restless night filled with vivid dreams. That can't have been E3 2015, can it – a show in which the impossible became possible all within the span of an hour? I've been covering this event for a good six years now, and I know,...

  • Soapbox Why So Many E3 2015 Announcements Are Being Spoiled

    Sammy Barker likes surprises, but reckons early reveals make sense

    I never tentatively tore the corners of my Christmas presents in order to get a sneaky first look inside. I had friends who claimed to know the contents of all of the gifts nestling beneath their fake fir trees, but I always preferred to wait. In fact, as I got older I tended to...

May2015

April2015

  • Soapbox You Should Stop Pre-Ordering Games

    Sammy Barker's against this scary trend

    We've got a problem, readers – and it pertains to pre-ordering games. I never used to be opposed to this practice: I'd regularly drop a fiver at my local GAME on titles that I was looking forward to, and would waltz home happily with a receipt and a pre-order pack – the DVD that came with Metal Gear...

  • Soapbox Why You Shouldn't Be Afraid to Play Bloodborne on PS4

    Sammy Barker says From Software's latest isn't as impenetrable as you think

    I beat Bloodborne last night. I'm tempted to talk up my gaming prowess in this opening paragraph, but I'd be undermining the entire point of this editorial if I did – there's way too much e-peen measuring going on elsewhere around the web with regards to From Software's...

  • Soapbox Sony Really Needs to Give Us More PlayStation Plus Cloud Space

    Sammy Barker's sick of running out of space

    There's one thing that you really need to know about me: I worry – a lot. For as long as I can remember, I've had irrational reactions to almost everything in my life: did I just put my modest size eight shoes in my mouth? Did I just get that exam question wrong – even though I've triple checked it...

  • Soapbox We Need More New Game Plus

    Robert Ramsey wants to start over, but not from scratch

    Just a couple of days ago, I started a new playthrough of Dragon Age: Inquisition, in preparation for the first slice of DLC that's hitting PlayStation consoles in May. Having already completed the game once, I was looking forward to slogging through the adventure again while making use of...

March2015

February2015

  • Soapbox Why We Need More Grounded Games

    Sammy Barker's sick of the surreal

    I did something that I don't usually do last night: I cancelled my late night session at the Push Square coal face in order to finish Life Is Strange. The debut episode in DONTNOD's episodic escapade has received a mixed reception from critics, with some lauding it as a minor masterpiece, while others try not to...

December2014

October2014

September2014

  • Soapbox Please Protect Me from the Purgatory of the PS3

    Sammy Barker is struggling to turn back time

    I feel like a teenager who’s had their iPhone swapped with a spinning top right now. After several months mainly using the PlayStation 4, I’ve decided to go back to the PlayStation 3 in order to clear out some of my backlog – and boy is it torture. There’s no doubt that Sony’s previous...

August2014

July2014

  • Soapbox Why Destiny Still Has a Lot to Prove to Me

    Sammy Barker takes Bungie's latest to task

    I hate being the jaded gamer. Ever since Push Square’s inception, it’s always been my mandate to celebrate the industry from a perspective of positivity rather than cynicism. That negativity seeps into every facet of the medium these days; whether it's obsessing over resolutions and framerates or...

June2014

May2014

March2014

  • Soapbox Live from PlayStation Is PS4's Secret Killer App

    Stream machine

    As a part of the media that trades primarily in words, I’m told that my role will be redundant soon. Reading is still a popular means of acquiring information, but gaming is a visual medium, and improving broadband speeds are making video a much more viable option. This can be evidenced all over the Internet, where broadcasters...

February2014

January2014

December2013

  • Soapbox Why There's No Real Rush to Upgrade to the PS4

    Sammy Barker's struggling to break the chain

    Somewhere around the world, someone is panicking over the fact that they can’t find a PlayStation 4 right now. Sony’s next generation system has been playing hide-and-seek with store shelves since its release on 15th November, with the platform holder’s

October2013

September2013

  • Soapbox Variety Is the Spice of Gaming Life

    Sammy Barker shares his taste for a good gaming buffet

    We’re never ones to pass up on a game of follow-the-leader here at Push Square towers, so it was only a matter of time before we politely borrowed the soapbox format that’s been running wild over on our sister site Nintendo Life for a while now. For those of you peering voyeuristically in...

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