Whatever happened to expanding your tastes? Not long ago, Sony announced the newest additions to the Instant Game Collection scheme. For the Playstation 3 we’re granted GRID: Autosport, a great racing game from the team at Codemasters. Persona 4: Arena Ultimax, a fighting game based on Persona 4, and Helldivers, a top down shooter that is also available for PS4 and the Vita. On the current gen side, we also have Nom Nom Galaxy, from the team behind PixelJunk and Frozen Synapse. Finally for the flagging Vita console we have Lemmings Touch and Nova-111. Within minutes people are bitching about how “None of these games are for me”. One imparticular said “Do you guys hate us or something?”.
Stuff like this really grinds my gears. No, Sony doesn’t hate you. In fact, it’s the opposite. If they hated you, they’d take your subscription for online play and give you… just online play. Let’s forget the days where our £40 a year subscription to Xbox got us a whole load of online gaming and nothing else. Suddenly, out of nowhere Sony struts up at E3 and announces that for a nominal fee, players will be entitled to download and play full titles, something which hadn’t been done before on a console and would be replicated by their fierce rivals at Microsoft and later EA. The Instant Game Collection was born in 2010, bringing with it a slew of lesser known titles like Critter Crunch, Shatter, and Stacking. The first game not deemed to be part of the “Arcade” collection (Forgive the use of the 360’s smaller digital brand name, please) to be released on the service was Tomb Raider: Underworld. This would be followed up by Far Cry 2, Sly Cooper and more.
I feel like the AAA titles that I’ve seen released on the service are what has led to this lack of appreciation for the smaller titles. Getting Borderlands, Demon’s Souls, Sleeping Dogs, Uncharted 3 and the like have overshadowed the smaller games that are equally deserving of your attention like the aforementioned Stacking. Like Costume Quest. Like Brothers. Like Papo & Yo.
All I’m asking for is for people to open up their eyes and see the golden opportunity that is directly in front of them to play excellent games that may not have gotten much love the first time around. For example, Papo & Yo is a truly touching, heartfelt story about a child dealing with his alcoholic father in a unique way. It’s a game that really touched my heart and deserves more than being dismissed. Broaden your gaming landscape.
Just for the record, I know not every game on the IGC is going to be an amazing smash hit that you’ll love forever and ever. But just give them a try, okay?