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Sacred Symbols: A PlayStation Podcast

Last Stand Media & Studio71

Leisure, Games, Video Games, Hobbies

4.8 • 3.8K Ratings

Overview

Sacred Symbols: A PlayStation Podcast is the internet's premiere weekly PlayStation show dedicated to coverage of PS5, PS4, PSVR2, and Sony's deep gaming legacy stretching back to the mid-'90s. Join 20+ year gaming industry veteran and PlayStation brand expert Colin Moriarty -- along with his co-hosts comedian Chris Ray Gun and producer Dustin Furman -- as they go through the news of the week, highlight the best recent games, and interact with their incredibly loyal audience, all without taking anything too seriously. New episodes post each and every Monday. To get early access to each episode, join thousands and thousands of your fellow listeners by supporting the show on Patreon at patreon.com/laststandmedia We wanna make the podcast even better, help us learn how we can: https://bit.ly/2EcYbu4  For advertising opportunities please email [email protected]    Privacy Policy: https://www.studio71.com/us/terms-and-conditions-use/#Privacy%20Policy

311 Episodes

#310 | The Waves Keep on Crashing on Me For Some Reason

fter a flurry of activity, we find ourselves in a bit of a lull. And frankly, that's good. We could all use a little bit of a rest. Doing so allows us to catch up, refresh, and anticipate what lies behind the next undoubtedly-busy corner. With E3's multi-pronged replacement readying a barrage of announcements and other newsworthy bits, let's clear what's on our plate at present. Firewalk's divisive Concord has been given a (compelling?) price, PSVR2 is receiving its long-rumored PC adapter, WB loses $200 million on Rocksteady's Suicide Squad game, the original Halo is rumored for release on PS5, and much more. Listener inquiries wrap things up, per usual. Does Astro Bot have the potential to be PlayStation's next big IP? Do Chinese games deserve more respect? Why doesn't PlayStation Network allow you to buy digital titles for your friends? Is Colin a psychopath for embracing the 'sock-shoe, sock-shoe' lifestyle? Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:18:57 - Dustin’s baby’s name 0:30:56 - Dusty 0:34:35 - Colin’s Body Pillow 0:40:04 - Ranch 0:42:59 - sock, shoe, sock, shoe 0:49:24 - Slitter’s Return 0:52:50 - Dagan’s IMDB page 0:54:46 - Puff puff 0:58:48 - Tomba: Special Edition dated 1:10:26 - PSVR PC Adapter 1:23:56 - Multiple projects confirmed at Naughty Dog 1:32:55 - Concord price and beta details 1:55:34 - PS5 8K box change 2:10:11 - Is The Last of Us Part 2 PC port done? 2:14:04 - Octopath Traveler is out on PlayStation 2:19:20 - Suicide Squad bombs 2:25:41 - Silent Hill 2 gameplay 2:32:16 - Dragon Age has a new name 2:33:31 - YouTube Leaks 2:34:29 - Amazon’s Yakuza show 2:43:24 - What We’ve Been Playing 3:00:39 - Astro Bot’s potential 3:08:10 - Do we miss E3? 3:15:25 - Game selling regret 3:22:16 - Battle Pass objectives 3:25:02 - Chinese Games 3:29:21 - PSN buying for a friend Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 10 June 2024

#309 | No One's Dying Dishonorably

During Sony's fiscal recent reporting, the company promised that it would further outline its respective situations and plans with each of its internal silos. When it comes to PlayStation, the result was an informative, information-rich PDF and an earnings call-like presentation that gives us a lot of extra insight into the brand. Here's what's clear: PlayStation is economically vibrant, growing, and reaching more than a hundred million people each month. Its generational revenue and profits are at all-time highs. People are spending more on the console than ever, purchasing more content, engaging with more products, and hanging around longer than ever. So, uh... maybe all of that chatter of an industry-wide console decline was a little premature? Sony (and Nintendo) is doing much better than just fine. Other news this week includes details on all 14 games shown during Sony's State of Play stream, including our first look at first party products like Firewalk's Concord and Asobi's all-new AstroBot game, rumors of the next Doom coming to PS5 day-and-date, the mystery behind Dragon Warrior III HD's long-time disappearance and recent return, controversy surrounding the misquoting of Neil Druckmann by Sony's own PR, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! When we say an executive has a fiduciary obligation, what do we mean? Should Sony be worried about Call of Duty going to Xbox Game Pass day one? Why is Activision being sued by the Uvalde shooting parents? Does Colin have any advice for a new Boston Terrier owner? Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:18:09 - Texas Tornado 0:22:23 - Boston Terrier advice 0:26:02 - Listening in the shower 0:38:16 - Two rapid questions 0:49:31 - New Doom on PS5 1:11:53 - PSVR2 PC adapter 1:21:50 - Neil Druckmann misquoted 1:45:43 - Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 announced 1:50:48 - Dragon Quest III HD update 1:57:28 - Dragon's Dogma 2 sells three million 1:59:14 - What are we playing? 2:34:27 - State of Play 3:21:54 - Sony investors meeting 4:09:34 - Days of Play 2024 4:21:07 - Resident Evil rumors 4:31:00 - Circana's April data 4:39:21 - JRPG lingo ranking 4:43:55 - Rebuilding a lost collection 4:51:30 - Will people switch to Xbox for COD on Gamepass? 4:59:54 - What are fiduciary obligations? 5:01:36 - Class Action lawsuit against games 5:14:35 - Was Destiny successful? Get a free gift with your Journey Pack at https://www.tryfum.com/sacred and use code SACRED Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 3 June 2024

#308 | Second Party Puzzles

We talk about 'first parties' and 'third parties' all the time, and we all fundamentally understand the terms. But what about the mysterious 'second party' game? Where do those fit in? Well, PS5 has recently been the recipient of two key second party exclusives -- Arrowhead's Helldivers 2 and Shift Up's Stellar Blade -- and both have been wildly successful, surpassing the respective expectations surrounding each product. In years past with different studios (think Naughty Dog, Guerrilla, Sucker Punch, Insomniac, Housemarque, and others), this level of accomplishment in the second party (where publishers own the game and/or its publishing rights, but not the team making it) often meant acquisition. But things seem awfully different now. There's no doubt Sony's interested in Arrowhead and Shift Up, but is it mutual? Other news includes hints surrounding PlayStation's bubbling mobile initiative, Ghost of Tsushima's amazing performance on PC, Death Stranding 2 entering its final phases of development, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! Why are we so obsessed with PlayStation 3 games coming to PS4 and PS5? Have we ever kept a journal to chronicle our experience with a game? With LEGO Horizon rumors amok, what other Sony IP would make sense in that aesthetic? Has Dishwasher Gate officially broken the collective spirit of the Last Stand community? Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:29:32 - Last week's unhinged start 0:42:42 - Sacred encouragement 0:45:28 - Southern man epidemic 0:50:15 - "I don't know" 0:59:39 - The Division 3 is coming 1:00:33 - Financial reporting correction 1:02:09 - Trophy completion data 1:05:26 - Where is the time to play games? 1:10:03 - Goodbye London Studio 1:16:10 - Death Stranding releasing in 2025 1:21:52 - Ghost of Tsushima is PlayStation biggest single player PC launch 1:32:27 - Strauss Zelnick is confident in GTA6's release date 1:41:38 - IGN buys everyone 1:55:57 - Rolling Stone revives its gaming coverage with Saudi money 2:15:00 - What we’ve been playing 3:06:28 - Changes at Arrowhead 3:26:11 - Shift Up's future plans 3:39:00 - PlayStation mobile job listings 3:48:50 - Why do we want PS3 emulation? 3:59:28 - Trophy addiction 4:07:15 - Video game journaling 4:12:13 - Dualsense Edging 4:18:22 - Other Lego PlayStation games 4:22:17 - Exclusives shouldn't exist? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 27 May 2024

#307 | Two Princes

Jim Ryan's tenure leading PlayStation is officially over (as is Hiroki Totoki's stewardship), and he'll be replaced by a co-CEO format moving forward. Sony veterans Hermen Hulst and Hideaki Nashino hope to divide and conquer, turning an ever-growing brand -- and Sony's flagship -- into an efficient gaming powerhouse. But can they deliver? Good question. We discuss. Other news this week revolves around Sony's jam-packed fiscal year financials, Square Enix's abandonment of their by-platform strategy, release dates and timing for the likes of Grand Theft Auto VI, Assassin's Creed: Shadows, and EA NCAA Football 25, a rumored LEGO Horizon game, the cancellation of The Division: Heartland, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! Could Helldivers be turned into a mockumentary-style TV show? Would Sony consider stepping in to save Tango Gameworks? Are Chris and Dustin excited about Destiny 2's upcoming The Final Shape expansion? Will we ever stop unintentionally convincing audience members to get divorced? Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:32:19 - Happy Birthday Ethan 0:34:00 - Vampire Robot YouTube channel 0:44:52 - Sacred ending marriages 0:49:37 - Mid Year review 0:52:52 - The next generation of Kingdom Hearts fans 0:58:20 - Sony capitulating 1:00:33 - No new Sony games this year 1:02:07 - The Last of Us Season 2 First look 1:06:15 - Bungie's CTO joins PlayStation 1:11:41 - LEGO Horizon? 1:25:53 - Ghost of Tsushima's PC port Legends mode crossplay is in beta 1:35:25 - Ragnarok rumored to be the next PC port 1:46:17 - Xbox's initiative to bring more games to PlayStation 2:03:22 - PS2 games coming to PS5 2:11:08 - Ubisoft cancels The Division: Heartland 2:25:30 - Adult Swim games reverting ownership to devs 2:27:23 - Tomb Raider TV series coming to Amazon 2:34:28 - What We’re Playing 3:11:45 - GTA VI is launching Fall 2025 3:14:40 - PlayStation has announced two new CEOs 3:29:12 - Sony earnings report 3:50:01 - Square Enix's shift to 3rd party 4:08:49 - Assassin's Creed: Shadows announced 4:26:42 - New PS Plus Games Catalog titles 4:29:38 - Helldivers TV adaptation pitch 4:34:05 - LSM Showcase live reaction? 4:40:23 - Could Sony scoop up what remains of Tango? 4:42:46 - Final Shape gut check 4:46:41 - RNG woes 4:52:38 - Uncharted 5 tease Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 20 May 2024

#306 | To Hell and Back

What a week! It seemed like we were just done recording last week when Helldivers 2-related drama broke out, and yet by the time we were ready to record this time around, the situation had mostly settled. How serendipitous for us and our analysis. Now, we're left to reflect and ask some questions, starting with why Sony had to push the first domino in this scenario over at all. Couldn't they just leave well enough alone? And how does this portend the reception of future PC releases from the PlayStation camp? Other news this week includes major layoffs and closures at Fallout and Doom publisher Bethesda (plus what that means for Xbox's uncertain future), percolating rumors of an imminent PlayStation Showcase, confirmation that -- yes indeed! -- Media Molecule is making a game and not a service or toolset, Remedy bailing out of its multiplayer project as Alan Wake 2 still fails to break even, and more. Then: Listener inquiries. How do we choose what game to play next? Was Days Gone 'right-wing'? Are in-game animations getting out of control? Can Colin help revive a long-maligned (but incredibly descriptive) word? Get 10% off your Journey Pack at https://www.tryfum.com/sacred and use code SACRED Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:27:43 - King Radec 0:33:36 - Too long? 0:45:03 - R word uptick 0:56:14 - Derek’s Journey 0:59:28 - Colin, the gardener 1:01:01 - Next PS Showcase 1:14:15 - Helldivers 2 Drama 1:45:06 - Xbox/Bethesda studio closures 2:47:55 - Switch 2 incoming 2:54:31 - Media Molecule’s next game 2:55:38 - Alan Wake 2 hasn’t made a profit 3:02:31 - April’s best selling PSN games 3:05:03 - What we’ve been playing 3:30:15 - How do we decide what to play next? 3:38:22 - Why Sony killed Days Gone 3:42:23 - Returnal turning point 3:44:48 - Too much realism? 3:53:01 - Saved video game item from a natural disaster 3:59:24 - Being watched (playing video games) Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 13 May 2024

#305 | Man the Floodgates

Times, they are a-changin'. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is rightfully pleased with Xbox's performance on the PlayStation Store, bragging about being the biggest publisher on PSN while presenting Microsoft's recent financial report. His company has seven games in the top 25, more than even Sony itself. So, uh, batten down the hatches, because you're inevitably about to get way more Xbox on PS5. Plus: Fresh leaks show us how Sony's digital games have sold in recent years, Square Enix writes-down $140 million in losses while cancelling multiple games, Take Two guts its Private Division label, Kingdom Hearts promises to horrify in film form, and more. Then: Listener inquiries. Based on recent moves by a rival, would Last Stand Media ever consider going platform-free with all of its content? Which drug from the Fallout universe are we most likely to become addicted to? How can a small indie game garner any attention in such a crowded market? What is it that Chris actually does all day? Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:19:34 - RIP Claire, the Dutch Shepherd 0:25:56 - Sacred subs 0:29:40 - Take the leave Dustin 0:42:47 - Why is Chris busy? 0:55:25 - The last time we applied for a job 1:06:18 - Platform focused podcasts 1:26:41 - Returnal comic 1:38:59 - Firesprite director laid off 1:40:35 - New PSN social feature 1:51:06 - Rise of the Ronin is outselling Nioh 1:56:08 - Shinji Mikami wants to get away from survival horror 2:04:34 - Private Division closes Roll7 and Intercept games 2:16:16 - A Kingdom Hearts film is coming 2:21:04 - AAA GI Joe 2:23:24 - 750 million downloads for eFootball 2:24:22 - What we’re playing 3:04:12 - Xbox's 3rd party future 3:25:38 - PSN sales data leaks 3:41:57 - Square Enix cancelations and changes 4:00:06 - March NPD 4:07:55 - New PS Plus games 4:12:04 - Publicity for a small game 4:16:41 - Fallout chems 4:21:37 - Video game gambling 4:28:25 - Underrated influential games 4:36:00 - Crunch vs over hiring 4:39:17 - PSN stats Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 6 May 2024

#304 | Too Big to Succeed

Embracer Group's downfall will be long-studied as an example of capitalistic hubris you rarely see, even in our ruthlessly capitalist society. Following mass layoffs, spin-offs, and studio closures, Embracer will ultimately split into three smaller, more manageable entities, instead of acting as a lone unit with more employees than the entire PlayStation brand, including all of its studios combined (seriously). It's just another example of people in positions of power somehow knowing less about their industry, the economy, and business than completely random people that do a video game podcast. Other news: Stellar Blade's "Hard R" controversy, the permanent closure of LittleBigPlanet's UGC servers, the cultural revival of the Fallout franchise on the back of a successful Amazon show, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! How do we feel about Ubisoft's apparent abandonment of the Watch Dogs franchise? Are gaming cookbooks the new rage? Can you be a fan of video games without actually playing them? Will British people ever acknowledge Americans' acumen with a map? Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. Timestamps: 0:00:00 - Intro 0:21:44 - Where is Sacred 300? 0:25:25 - Sacred through college 0:32:10 - Quintin's surgery 0:39:52 - British people 0:46:20 - PS Stars points correction 0:52:35 - LBP goes offline 1:09:36 - Hard R Shop 1:32:07 - Fallout show is getting another season 1:44:57 - Metaphor ReFantazio releases October11 1:48:53 - What we’re playing 2:36:34 - Embracer's downfall 2:53:42 - Watch Dogs is dead 3:01:11 - Dustin raising a gamer 3:09:56 - Is capitalism the problem? 3:13:29 - Gaming cookbooks 3:21:51 - Colin’s trophy inconsistencies 3:25:03 - Am I broken? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 29 April 2024

#303 | The Unified Field Theory

For better or for worse, modern console manufacturers like Sony and Microsoft -- and even Nintendo -- are slowly learning that sustained success in the mid-to-long-term will require a wider view. Whether via mobile, or PC, or even your competitors' own machines, a certain message is getting through to the powers-that-be, and when it comes to Sony, the Japanese giant seems committed to opening a second front on home computers in particular. Thus comes word of a new PlayStation overlay that will launch with Ghost of Tsushima on PC this May, another step in a direction towards an inevitable conclusion. Other news this week includes so-called "transmog" drama in Helldivers 2, pending layoffs at publisher Take Two, compelling rumors of remakes for the original Persona game and its sequel, additional PS5 Pro details, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! Do we track our gaming backlogs? Does Tencent's minority ownership of Stellar Blade developer Shift Up give us pause? How far back in time could you go before you could -- in no way, shape, or form -- explain what a video game was? Can British people ever overcome their insane shared vocabulary? Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. Timestamps: 0:00:00 - Intro 0:26:55 - Sacred in Antigua 0:30:12 - British Vernacular 0:36:22 - Colin's Networking Solution 0:41:10 - Chris Ray Trump 0:43:09 - Dustin's vacancy 0:55:45 - Marriage insight 0:58:05 - Chess.com 1:10:39 - Ampere Analysis 1:16:23 - No Helldivers 2 transmog 1:22:04 - Take Two layoffs 1:36:08 - Ascendant Studios furloughed 1:37:37 - Persona remakes? 1:42:16 - March top downloads 1:45:39 - Possibility Space shut down 2:01:37 - Keanu Reeves cast in Sonic 3 2:02:48 - What We’re Playing 2:37:58 - PlayStation trophies on PC 2:56:54 - New PS5 Pro leaks 3:19:02 - Have we used Backloggd? 3:26:16 - Will companies chase the success of Helldivers? 3:35:47 - How do you explain video games to the past? 3:43:32 - Shift Up and Tencent 3:48:33 - Divergent timelines and parallel universes 3:54:57 - How do our personalities play into our taste? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 22 April 2024

#302 | SOCOMeback

We've long-wondered what Sony's plans were with its dormant SOCOM franchise (or if it even had plans at all). After all, we can't just ignore the success the likes of Ubisoft have found with titles like Rainbow Six: Siege, and even in a post-Zipper Interactive world, it always felt like PlayStation's tactical shooter never really got a fair shake at success after its PS2 heyday. So color us both pleased and surprised when information from the resumé of a deceased actor pointed towards a SOCOM game that no one had ever even heard of: SOCOM 111. While it's fairly clear this project never got off the ground (or did it?), its existence gives us a fleeting glimpse into Sony's potential plans, and frankly, we can help but wonder if Zipper's defunct series may yet see the light of day in the future. Other news this week includes a release date for Star Wars: Outlaws, Vampire Survivors finally migrating to PlayStation platforms, Stellar Blade going gold, potential hiring for a new God of War game at Santa Monica studio, copious Destiny 3 and Dead Space 2 Remake rumors, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! Will PlayStation's colorful old logo ever make a return? Do we ever rename the characters in our digital adventures? What's our worst 'losing progress in a game' experience? Should one listener extract his stolen garbage bin from his neighbor, no matter the cost? Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:42:47 - Do you know what we look like? 0:46:42 - Colin's internet problems 0:55:01 - The return of Hector 0:57:14 - Micah Stan 1:00:19 - "clowns, the good kind" 1:07:05 - Plane worries 1:12:45 - Garbage can situation 1:21:36 - Portal hack correction 1:23:55- Stellar Blade has gone gold. 1:29:25 - Santa Monica Studio gearing up for a new God of War 1:37:47 - Dead Space 2 Remake drama 1:54:14 - Sea of Thieves PS5 closed beta 1:59:48 - Is Destiny 3 in development? 2:15:30 - Yuji Naka returns 2:19:41 - Fallout 4 next gen update 2:29:37 - What we've been playing 3:16:44 - New SOCOM rumors 3:32:42 - Star Wars Outlaws has a release date. 3:45:56 - Vampire Survivors is coming to PS5 3:53:25 - New PS Plus games 4:00:37 - Cozy games 4:09:08 - Will the original PlayStation logo come back? 4:15:23 - How do we name characters in games? 4:20:59 - Why do games keep getting greenlit? 4:28:00 - Game crash woes 4:33:38 - Ubisoft hate Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 15 April 2024

#301 | It's Never Too Late to Reinvent the Bicycle

It was just a couple of weeks ago that we were discussing the newest PlayStation 5 Pro rumors, and now we have fresh scuttlebutt to parse through, particularly concerning our precious framerates and the potential of the still-unannounced console. But we can't help but also wonder what PS5's market potential will be. Will it spread the field or, as it's recently been suggested, merely sell to existing PS5 players? Heck, is there any saving console gaming at all in the long-term? Let's take some time to chat about all of that, plus other news: Helldivers 2's new patch, day-one games coming to PS+ Extra, Silent Hill 2 Remake's ESRB rating, revised PlayStation 2 sales numbers, and so much more. Then: Listener inquiries! How much to we absorb a given game's internal lore, codices, documentation, and so on? Are we ever going to figure out what a 'Soulsborne' actually is? Could a new Shark Tank-like show aimed at indie games help exciting products find their audience? Is Dustin hiding anything else from Colin and Chris that he'd like to talk about? Start building credit at https://www.chime.com/sacred Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:27:41 - Is game drama exclusive on Twitter? 0:44:39 - Universal LSM fans 0:59:49 - Retro PlayStation Magazine 1:04:05 - Chris's Red Pants 1:12:37 - Tips for moving in together 1:18:10 - IGN's Zelda April Fools 1:21:19 - PlayStation Store Spring Sale 1:27:56 - New PS5 Pro news 1:41:51 - Helldivers 2 update 1:44:42 - PS+ Game Catalogue Day One games 1:50:55 - New PS2 sales data 1:57:16 - Portal hack reported to Sony 2:01:38 - Silent Hill 2 rated 2:19:10 - KOTOR Remake is alive 2:29:03 - Dragon's Dogman 2 Sales 2:29:59 - Unicorn Overlord 500k Copies sold 2:31:47 - Hollow Knight: Silksong incoming? 2:37:33 - PS5 Minecraft port 2:40:12 - What are we playing? 3:33:30 - Do we read collectibles and lore? 3:44:51 - "this will make me sound like a hater" 3:54:20 - Updated thoughts on the Portal 4:08:48 - What does SoulsBorne really mean? 4:20:54 - Pixel Pitch 4:31:20 - Post-game emptiness Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 8 April 2024

#300 | We're Nothing If Not Consistent

Somehow, some way, we've made it to our 300th episode, and we did so without missing a single, solitary week between the first show in 2018 and today. We celebrated our milestone this past weekend with 500 listeners at a sold-out live show in New York City, and we're eager to reflect on what the experience meant to us. But the news marches on, too, albeit somewhat softly, and we'd be loath to ignore it. So let's delve in. The once-leaked Stellar Blade demo is set to be properly released on PSN by the time we publish, Embracer took a $800 million loss in selling Gearbox to Take Two, legendary game dev Shinji Mikami has founded a new team, Sony's Bend Studio seems to be going down the live service route, and more. Listener inquiries help us wrap things up, touching on topics like the golden era of RPGs, Dragon's Dogma 2's microtransaction drama, Nintendo's status as the ultimate gateway drug, and a listener too sick to come to Sacred 300 in NYC. Start the Good Habit at https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED to save 10% off the Journey Pack today. Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:31:13 - Live show video? 0:36:01 - Sacred friends on the train 0:38:39 - Too sick for Sacred 300 0:41:05 - RIP 0:46:23 - YouTube Premium 0:52:39 - Stellar Blade demo incoming 0:55:51 - Embracer sells Gearbox to Take-Two 1:02:46 - Community Game Help 1:04:11 - Final Fantasy IX teased? 1:08:50 - It Takes Two sales 1:15:32 - Shinji Mikami is back 1:21:20 - What Are We Playing 1:42:44 - Sony Bend’s Live Service Project 1:56:33 - Final Fantasy XVI's DLC 2:02:10 - PS Plus Games 2:08:11 - The rise of RPGs 2:22:50 - Dragon's Dogma 2 discourse 2:38:29 - The power of $40-50 games 2:47:48 - The future of GameStop 3:00:21 - What's wrong with comic book games? 3:14:56 - Nintendo, the gateway console Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 1 April 2024

#299 | None of These Things Happen For Free

Various leaks (and our own sources) have long-indicated the arrival of a so-called PlayStation 5 Pro console this calendar year, and now new reports have given us a great idea of what this yet-unannounced machine can do. Similar to 2016's PlayStation 4 Pro, PS5's Pro model largely keeps its CPU functionality in place, instead focusing on GPU-centric graphical boosts that promise to please the discerning eye. Combined with mysterious proprietary upscaling technologies and AI-related features, it sounds like PlayStation 5 Pro will be a beastly machine when it comes to aesthetics. But what about the all-important framerate? The news may be less stellar. And the price? Well, that remains to be seen. We discuss. Other news this week includes continuing and seemingly never-ending drama at Sony's great unforced acquisition error Bungie, stalled sales numbers for Sony's struggling PSVR2 hardware, exceptional performance for Helldivers 2 on the US market, the beginning of the end (or maybe more like the end of the end) of Kotaku, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! Between multiple cancellations on one end and Helldivers 2 on the other, what is our current assessment of PlayStation's embryonic games-as-a-service initiative? Does Resident Evil 5's setting and antagonists make the game truly un-remakable? Has 2024's schedule of strong releases unabashedly picked up right where 2023 left off? Has our show successfully infiltrated Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, corrupting its personnel? Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:18:17 - Sacred Symbols Military Base 0:20:27 - Use Sacred to make people think you're busy 0:27:44 - Boars Heads superiority 0:36:25 - Chris Chan catch-up 0:42:06 - concerning notification? 0:51:22 - Connie Booth goes to EA 0:59:09 - New Helldivers developments 1:03:09 - Palworld looking to release on PlayStation 1:09:07 - Marvel 1943: Rise of Hydra 1:18:18 - Halo co-creator's thoughts on EA 1:24:50 - Callisto Protocol spin-off 1:29:01 - Tales series character artist has pass away 1:30:22 - What We've Been Playing 1:41:50 - PS5 Pro leaks 2:14:17 - PSVR2 stops production 2:43:33 - Trouble at Bungie 3:06:32 - Monthly sales data 3:07:56 - Kotaku EIC resigns 3:15:17 - Community Managers 3:23:37 - What's the best handheld console? 3:36:28 - Should Resident Evil 5 be re-written? 3:47:28 - 2024 best year ever for games? 3:53:25 - Gut check on Sony live service games 4:01:21 - What games need to go? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 25 March 2024

#298 | I Know the Pieces Fit, 'Cause I Watched Them Fall Away

From this show's perspective, there simply aren't that many rational targets of acquisition in PlayStation's sphere, especially with a tightening economy all around us. But there are two teams in particular -- Helldivers' Arrowhead and Stellar Blade's Shift Up -- that seemed like obvious potential marks based on Sony's historical activity. But with Shift Up about to go public in South Korea and Arrowhead's CEO publicly stating they aren't being courted, are we overestimating these teams' want to join the family? Or maybe it's on Sony? Or perhaps it's something else... So let's discuss. Plus: Ex-second party partner Deviation closes its doors, Embracer continues its sell-off, a trailer leaks for Insomniac's cancelled Spider-Man multiplayer game, Final Fantasy XVI's PC port draws near, and more. Then: What do we think of Sea of Thieves' success in pre-order on PSN? What does a "community manager" do? Are Trophies worth protecting? Did Colin's undying love of Long Island unite two star-crossed listeners? Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:30:55 - Shoutout Ray 0:35:30 - Pride of Long Island brings Sacred fans together 0:39:57 - Sacred's Point of No Return 0:42:14 - Vice President Aaron Rodgers 0:47:58 - RIP In Peace 0:49:53 - Goth Girls 0:53:12 - Colin's Beyond 200 Promise 0:55:48 - Are new studios a good idea? 1:01:42 - Why is every game a lightning rod? 1:13:37 - New PS5 firmware 1:18:16 - Spider-Man: The Great Web 1:24:51 - PSN most-downloaded games 1:29:53 - Embracer jettisons Saber, 4A Games and Zen 1:31:18 - Helldivers 2 introduces flying bugs 1:35:26 - FF16 is coming to PC 1:38:12 - Mega Man tease? 1:40:58 - RE4 Remake surpasses 7 million sold 1:41:39 - System Shock Remake comes to PS4 and PS5 1:43:13 - MultiVersus returns 1:45:17 - What Are We Playing? 2:04:26 - Deviation closes 2:13:27 - Shift Up's evaluation 2:23:38 - Grandia 1 and 2 are coming to PlayStation 4 2:29:27 - PS Plus new games 2:37:48 - More games made for less money? 2:44:55 - Sea of Thieves is the most pre-ordered game on PS5 2:57:20 - Instruments over games 3:04:43 - Are community managers needed? 3:10:17 - Why does games media turn a blind eye to racism? 3:35:34 - AITA for protecting trophies? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 18 March 2024

#297 | There's No Magic When the Tricks Get Old

The last week in gaming has been a bit of a downer, no doubt. But we don't dodge the news; we lean into it. And frankly, it's not all bad. Quite the contrary: Ghost of Tsushima is coming to PC, Spider-Man 2 has finally received a major update, and the STALKER Trilogy is migrating to console for the first time ever. But then there's drama surrounding a random DEI-slanted consultancy called Sweet Baby Inc., the closure of the storied media brand Rooster Teeth after more than a decade of running in the red, and word that the publisher behind 2023's biggest commercial hit wants to abandon the model it followed for greener pastures. Listener inquiries help us round-out a strange seven days, focusing on topics like crossover fighters, Marty O'Donnell entering the political realm, Helldivers 2's newest patch, and one listener who was 'caught' playing an anime game, and had a lot of explaining to do at the dinner table. Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:31:15 - Gaming’s Three-Fifths Compromise 0:33:07 - Arby’s x LSM 0:35:31 - Copium around laxative-gate 0:43:06 - Games to take to space 0:51:05 - Doordash disgust 0:57:35 - META 0:59:14 - Helldivers 2 patch 1:02:30 - Horizon Forbidden West PC specs 1:04:49 - Balatro age rating issues 1:11:41 - Persona 3 Reload DLC 1:16:04 - Rooster Teeth closed 1:40:27 - What Are We Playing? 1:57:05 - Ghost of Tsushima is coming to PC 2:08:14 - India Hero Project 2:11:52 - STALKER re-releases 2:17:26 - Spider-Man 2 update 2:20:04 - A counter-argument on 1st Party 2:33:34 - What developers should collaborate? 2:42:54 - Warner Bros. Live service comments 2:49:53 - Sweet Baby Inc controversy 3:11:34 - Marty O’Donnel is running for Congress 3:16:18 - When your kid exposes you as a weeb Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 11 March 2024

#296 | A Smooth Operator, Operating Correctly

There's no doubt that the console games space at large is predicated on some shaky economics, and recent layoffs are just the beginning of what will likely be a substantial purging of talent from the ranks of teams around the world. Late last year, we caught wind (via the Insomniac leaks) that Sony was planning layoffs, and would close one of its teams, too. This turned out to be true: 8% of PlayStation's workforce has been released, London Studio is no more, and multiple games have been cancelled, including a Twisted Metal project. Will these drastic moves help buttress the PlayStation brand's ever-narrowing profit margin, and allow the world-class brand to operate from a point of renewed strength? Or is the pain only beginning? Plus: Neil Druckmann may be burning out, footage of a never-released LittleBigPlanet product emerges on the net, cheaters begin ruining Helldivers 2, and more. At the end of our show, we field audience questions, as usual. Where do we fall on the recently-brewing localization fiasco surrounding games like Unicorn Overlord? How come Stellar Blade got such trouble for its fanservice while Final Fantasy VII Rebirth's blatant fanservice is celebrated? Should everyone be a little nicer to Geoff Keighley? Has Dustin's opinions on Aldi changed one listener's life forever? Start the Good Habit at https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED to save 10% off the Journey Pack today. Start building credit at https://www.chime.com/sacred Please keep in mind that our timestamps are approximate, and will often be slightly off due to dynamic ad placement. 0:00:00 - Intro 0:24:24 - RIP Richard Lewis 0:31:03 - Annals of manifested wishes 0:34:39 - Laxative-gate 0:39:55 - First apartment advice 0:45:09 - Aldi is awesome 0:54:01 - Potential baby names 0:55:05 - Best Podcast award 1:00:18 - Peloton LSM crew 1:02:13 - FFVII Rebirth discs are messed up in Asia 1:06:42 - Helldivers 2 cheaters 1:12:18 - LittleBigPlanet Hub leaks 1:14:55 - Remedy regains control of Control 1:20:39 - Supermassive Games layoffs 1:21:46 - NCAA Football is offering $600 to players 1:25:09 - What Are We Playing? 2:00:39 - Sony layoffs 3:22:41 - EA layoffs 3:31:36 - Neil Druckmann says he only has a few games left in him 3:41:00 - January 2024 Game Sales 3:43:44 - March PS+ Games 3:45:03 - Localization issues 3:55:17 - Stop attacking Geoff Keighley 3:58:39 - Proportional hypocrisy 4:02:18 - Multiple playthrough trophies 4:04:24 - Bloodborne leak woes 4:07:56 - Two-path system Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 4 March 2024

#295 | The Love That You Need Will Never Be Found at Home

The dam has broken. After paving the way just last week, Microsoft has confirmed its four games that are coming to PlayStation platforms, and they're arriving a lot sooner than any of us thought. One of them -- Pentiment -- is available on PS4 and PS5 alike right now, while Hi-Fi Rush isn't far behind. Multiplayer titles Grounded and Sea of Thieves will round things out, but certainly, this is just the beginning of the migration, right? Other news this week includes the release date for Elden Ring's long-awaited expansion, percolating PS5 Pro rumors suggesting a fall release, the beginning of Jim Ryan's goodbye tour, PSVR2's PC future, and much more. Listener inquiries help us round things out, as usual. Did Hiroki Totoki successfully diagnose Bungie's issues? Does Sony suffer and Nintendo benefit from a double-standard when it comes to porting and otherwise re-releasing their respective games? Could Resistance: Retribution's reemergence indicate a future for the dormant franchise? Is Brad saying "Colin" wrong on all of his shows? This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at https://www.betterhelp.com/symbols and get on your way to being your best self Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 26 February 2024

#294 | Sorry For Helldiving

It's been an unusual week in the PlayStation ecosystem, especially in recent years, where the exclusives and heavy-hitters from Sony primarily resided in the single-player sphere. But then a game like Helldivers 2 drops out of orbit, and suddenly we're brought back to the days of SOCOM, Killzone, and others, when PlayStation had an actual online identity, albeit a fledgling one. Could this be the beginning of a great new trend? Or does pessimism reign supreme? Other news this week includes the most vague, circular PR from Xbox that confirms -- yes, indeed -- Xbox games are en route to PlayStation beginning with four titles, while Sony releases a financial report that shows promising revenue and meteoric PS5 sales, but with serious financial warnings on the horizon. Plus: What the hell is Intergalactic: The Heretic Prophet? Is there a rift between Konami and Bloober Team? Are people overreacting to the Tomb Raider Remaster's content warning label? Then: Listener inquiries! Where do we fall in the raging 'yellow paint' debate? What's our favorite JRPG battle system? Which order should the Castlevania games be played in? Was Colin's and Micah's recent visit to Cracker Barrel everything they hoped it'd be? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 19 February 2024

#293 | Natural Selection

We know that Xbox games are migrating to PlayStation, and by the next episode of this very show, we'll have a much better idea of what a future slate of Microsoft products on Sony's console may look like. In the meantime, however, we're left to wonder how we got here in the first place. One could easily argue that PlayStation's and Xbox's rivalry essentially concluded with the end of the 360/PS3 era (Microsoft has been nowhere near Sony in terms of quality, mindshare, or revenue ever since), but we may very well be on the cusp of a true sea change not seen since the decline of SEGA. While we wait for answers, let's speculate and analyze to our hearts' content. Let's also delve into some other news -- Stellar Blade protagonist complaints, Disney's marriage with Epic, The Last of Us: Part III rumblings, and more -- and conclude with listener inquiries, like we always do. Are we amped for Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden? Is IGN's staff unionization drive a wise move in this environment? Do we overestimate the importance of the Uncharted franchise to gaming? Could we maybe tone it down a bit on the nearly-six hour episodes? Get 10% off your entire order at https://www.thefreezepipe.com and use code SACRED Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 12 February 2024

#292 | Meet Me In Outer Space

A new State of Play presentation -- arguably the best Sony has ever executed -- has given us a plethora of items to discuss on this week's all-new episode of Sacred Symbols. For starters, we finally have a release date for the amazing-looking second party PS5 exclusive action-RPG Stellar Blade, which we cannot wait to play. We also got a lengthy glimpse at Team Ninja's Rise of the Ronin, confirmation of a near-remake of Until Dawn from Ballistic Moon, a fresh look at Death Stranding 2 en route to PS5 in 2025, and the confirmation of a new, MGS-like Kojima series, presumably on PlayStation 6 (!). And there's lots of other news, too, including the first details concerning Firesprite's upcoming title, Project Heartbreak. Likewise, MLB: The Show 24 and Horizon: Forbidden West's PC port have both been dated, obscure PlayStation vehicular combat game Hardware Rivals may be returning, classic shooter Spec Ops: The Line has been delisted, Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League is driving people insane, leaks indicate we'll be playing Xbox 'exclusives' on PlayStation very soon, and much more. Finally: Listener inquiries! Are recent rumors of a new Sony handheld to be believed? Have Battle Passes ruined online gaming forever? Is cross-media the future no matter how much it's resisted? Can we please stop with the double-spacing, once and for all? Start the Good Habit at https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED to save 10% off the Journey Pack today. Start building credit at https://www.chime.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 2 February 2024

#291 | The Guillotine

Our beloved games industry is currently mired in an economic crisis of its own creation. By rapidly expanding corporate headcounts during the pandemic -- and by foolishly forecasting 2020-era gaming habits would persist into future years -- many publishers and developers have found themselves dramatically overextended. In 2022, some 8,500 people lost their jobs in gaming; that number grew appreciably to 10,500 last year. Here in 2024, though? Not even a month into the calendar, we're sitting at around 6,000 job losses. And it's going to get way worse. How did pubs and devs get this so wrong? And how come the human cost falls upon the people who were hired, but not those that did the hiring? Plus: A reliable rumor indicates Until Dawn is PS5-and-PC-bound, Death Stranding 2's re-reveal may be right around the corner, Focus Entertainment foolishly rebrands itself, and more. Then: Let's wrap things up with listener inquiries, as usual. How do we balance multiple games at once? Could the harm leaks do to studios actually be overstated? Is paywalling New Game+ a step too far? When is the appropriate time in the day to shower? This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at https://www.betterhelp.com/symbols and get on your way to being your best self Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 29 January 2024

#290 | In the Black and the White, a Technicolorful Life

As we wade through the mundanity of the turn-of-the-year -- when very few new games come to market and we work through our respective backlogs -- hope sits on the horizon. After all, the drab is about to turn into the delightful with the release or near-release of the likes of Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown, The Last of Us: Part II Remastered, Granblue Fantasy Relink, Persona 3 Remake, and Helldivers 2, among others. And as we look forward to all of that, we have news galore to cover, too. Square Enix's Splatoon-like Foamstars is coming to PlayStation+ day-and-date, but is its mild use of AI art egregious? (And what about its strange proximity to Helldivers 2?) Ubisoft+ is being reformed as a more value-rich proposition for consumers, so why did so many outlets blatantly take one of their executives out of context following a recent interview? PlayStation Productions is pursuing an Until Dawn film based on the cult-hit PS4-exclusive horror game, but are we starting to beat a dead horse? Plus: Listener inquiries! Are we getting too fast and loose with the term 'live service'? Why do some developers and publishers choose to hire diversity consultants? Should we expect an exorbitant number of Steamboat Willie games in the near-to-mid future? Will Chris continue to be bullied over his love of Julia Louis-Dreyfus? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 22 January 2024

#289 | It's Just Murder; Least You Know I Care

The most infamous character in The Last of Us franchise is undoubtedly Abby, and with her casting in the HBO rendition of the famous Naughty Dog series now set (along with a couple of other key roles), we're starting to get more clarity about just what her on-screen vendetta with Ellie will look like come 2025. Are we about to relive 2020 all over again, or will fans be pleased? And then there's Xbox, a conspicuous subject that seems to keep coming up on Sacred Symbols for one simple reason: Smoke indicates fire. Fresh on the back of denouncements about GamePass on PlayStation comes compelling industry rumors of multiple first party Xbox games en route to the PlayStation ecosystem, potentially in the form of Sea of Thieves and Hi-Fi Rush. Does this move represent the opening frames of a coup de grace? Other news this week includes Helldivers 2 PC details, a DualSense model with a better battery, disastrous Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League previews, rampant corporate layoffs, the confusing reemergence of Gravity Rush and Patapon, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! Is gaming experiencing a dangerous economic bubble? Could Horizon's rumored MMO skip PlayStation 5? Have we been too hard on Spider-Man 2? Can Chris raise the spirits of a listener merely by changing his usual podcast outro ever-so-slightly? Start the Good Habit at https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED to save 10% off the Journey Pack today. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 15 January 2024

#288 | You're A Slave To Money, Then You Die

Sony-owned Insomniac Games suffered a major hack in late 2023, and seemingly infinite leaks made their way to various corners of the internet mere days after we went away for break. We're not going to shy away from the subject matter -- the news is the news, after all -- but we do want to talk about the situation holistically. Yes, Insomniac is a money-printing machine, but it's also now almost completely indentured to a licensor to keep the supply of cash flowing, and may be unable to stop if it wants to survive. Meanwhile, many of our peers and competitors shied away from covering the topic at all, in perhaps one of the rarest and most pristine examples of media bias seen in recent memory. Let's delve into all of it, shall we? Since we haven't recorded in some time, there's obviously other news to get through as well, including a new sales milestone for PS5, tantalizing details about NCSoft's mysterious Horizon MMO, the quiet return of CoD veteran Jason Blundell to the PlayStation fold, the closure of a key PSVR second party partner, and more. Listener inquiries help us round things out, touching on topics like NCAA Football's return, PS5 Pro's potential, GTAVI's potential price, and an admission that -- yes, indeed -- sleeping without underwear but in a t-shirt is the optimal way for one to rest. This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at https://www.betterhelp.com/symbols and get on your way to being your best self Start building credit at https://www.chime.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 8 January 2024

#287 | Our Most Anticipated Games of 2024

2023 is done (or just about, depending on when you listen to or watch this), and it was an undeniably awesome year for our industry, and for all of us as enthusiasts. But now we can begin to safely -- and even earnestly -- look into 2024, and figure out just what we're most excited to play in this new calendar year. Each cast member brought five games to discuss, making 15 total. Of course, our selections don't nearly represent the full spectrum of available titles people are stoked about, but we're confident we'll have pointed you in a few fruitful directions by the end of our brief recording. Our only rule? The game in question has to be dated for 2024 on PlayStation 5. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 1 January 2024

#286 | Our Favorite PlayStation Moments of 2023

The holiday season is here, and it's thus time to employ the first of our traditional yearly wrap-up episodes. Let's take a gander back at the year that was, not only in PlayStation, but in the gaming world surrounding the brand, too. Each Sacred cast member brings five 'moments' to the table, and naturally, they're of a wide array. Jim Ryan's retirement, PlayStation 5's domination, PSVR2's irrelevance, Bungie's problems, Unity's meltdown, Yuij Naka's prosecution, Baldur's Gate 3's success, PS5 Pro's inevitability, and more are on the board. Let's get to each topic -- and more! -- as we wind our way through 2023 with a keen eye toward 2024. Start the Good Habit at https://www.tryfum.com/ SACRED to save 10% off the Journey Pack today. Get 20% off your first order plus free shipping at https://www.meundies.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 25 December 2023

#285 | Deader Than Dead

We recorded a full episode of the show -- originally called Deader Than Dead because of the demise of E3 -- but we had no idea how apt that title would actually become. In the hours after we hit stop, word broke of Naughty Dog's cancellation of The Last of Us' standalone Factions mode, which they call The Last of Us Online (as first reported right here on Sacred Symbols). Naturally, we had to record a lengthy pickup to discuss the unfortunate news. And yes: E3 is dead, as mentioned above. From 1995 through 2019, E3 ran each and every year in LA (except for those two random Atlanta shows in the '90s), and it was a gathering point for games professionals, the media, and others. But as the magazine era gave way to web 1.0, and then to 2.0, and now to wherever we are now, the once mighty convention has no place in an environment where devs, publishers, and consumers can reach each other directly. In short: Let's give E3 the viking funeral it deserves. Plus: Insomniac purportedly gets hacked, Spider-Man 2's updates have been delayed, film production house A24 teams up with Kojima, fresh Resident Evil remakes are en route, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! If Blade is an Xbox console exclusive, why won't Microsoft just say so? Should we expect a State of Play early in the new year? How did FNTASTIC take their customers for a ride with The Day Before? Is Colin's "please look forward to that" saying simply an alteration of Jeb Bush's "please clap" debacle? Start the Good Habit at https://www.tryfum.com/ SACRED to save 10% off the Journey Pack today. Get 20% off your first order plus free shipping at https://www.meundies.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 18 December 2023

#284 | Say Anything

After a long wait, PlayStation utilized Geoff Keighley's Game Awards to reveal new information about its upcoming slate of first party games. Psych! While TGA's three-hour runtime was ample -- and while a litany of quality games were announced and explored -- PlayStation's complete lack of first party presence (outside of free God of War: Ragnarok DLC) is notable. Will the company ever talk again? Or will we continue to be stuck in this pincer, with promising second and third party games coming down the pike, but precious little information about what matters most to Sony's more hardcore and devoted fans? Nonetheless, we break down The Game Awards' announcements one-by-one, getting deep into the likes of Exodus, Kemuri, Visions of Mana, Last Sentinel, Exoborne, and more. And there's a heck of a lot to talk about outside of the event, too, including the release of Grand Theft Auto VI's first official trailer and serious trouble brewing at Sony-owned Bungie. As is typical, we wrap things up with listener inquiries from the audience. Is Fortnite primed to take over the world? Do we simply have to spend more time with PSVR2? How long do retro enthusiasts expect their hardware to last? Can we get our hands on one of those "Thank You Jim" cookies from Jim Ryan's retirement party? Get 20% off your first order and a free gram of THCa flower at https://www.hellomood.com and use code SACRED This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at https://www.betterhelp.com/symbols and get on your way to being your best self Start the Good Habit at https://www.tryfum.com/ SACRED to save 10% off the Journey Pack today. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 11 December 2023

#283 | The SEGA Moment

For years on this show, we've put forth the logic that Game Pass would ultimately find its way to PlayStation, fulfilling Microsoft's goal of ubiquitous access to its popular subscription service. And you may recall that -- during the FTC hullabaloo with Activision -- Xbox executives all-but-confirmed these intentions, adding fuel to the fire. But now that Microsoft CFO Tim Stuart has explicitly and publicly spoken about Xbox's desire to get Game Pass on PlayStation by name, we're no longer in the realm of hypotheticals. Perhaps not surprisingly (and as you may imagine), this gives us plenty to discuss on today's episode. But there's more! An ex-Rockstar North employee spilled the beans on just what happened to vaporware PS3 exclusive The Agent, Sony signs agreements with two key South Korean partners, Dragon's Dogma 2's release date is official, The Game Awards' Future Class doesn't realize no one cares what they think, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! What are our memories of our respective first experiences with the original Metal Gear Solid? Is it possible to deliver a war game with true reverence? Has the games industry been too consumed with subjects that are decidedly not fun? Can the pronunciation of GIF ever truly be settled, even amongst civilized people? Head to https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED and use code SACRED to save an additional 10% off your order today. Get 25% off your first order, plus free shipping at https://www.meundies.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 4 December 2023

#282: Where Are the Games, Bub?

A new leak seems to confirm what was already fairly obvious: Insomniac can only put so much on its shoulders, and its Wolverine game won't arrive on PlayStation 5 until 2025. But if this source's testimony is true, it means PS5's lack of upcoming first party games is even more stark in the near-and-mid-term, not to mention longer. Yes, The Last of Us: Part II Remastered is en route in January -- and with a $10 upgrade charge, there's literally nothing to complain about -- but even the rosiest amongst us must admit that it sure is looking barren from a PlayStation Studios perspective. Whether or not it matters or not to the wider market, of course, is another thing entirely, as the vacancy of exclusives hasn't halted PS5's sales dominance whatsoever. Other news this week includes conflicting reports concerning Sony's one-time timed PS5-exclusive KOTOR remake, the leak of Dragon's Dogma's 2 release date, the exit of Returnal's director from Housemarque, and more. As always, listener inquiries help us wrap everything up. Can Netflix really produce a quality BioShock film? Which game series really hit their stride with the second release? What happens to our digital games libraries when we die? Did Colin watch Oppenheimer on his phone simply to annoy Chris? Head to https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED and use code SACRED to save an additional 10% off your order today. Build your credit up at https://www.chime.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 27 November 2023

#282 | Where Are the Games, Bub?

A new leak seems to confirm what was already fairly obvious: Insomniac can only put so much on its shoulders, and its Wolverine game won't arrive on PlayStation 5 until 2025. But if this source's testimony is true, it means PS5's lack of upcoming first party games is even more stark in the near-and-mid-term, not to mention longer. Yes, The Last of Us: Part II Remastered is en route in January -- and with a $10 upgrade charge, there's literally nothing to complain about -- but even the rosiest amongst us must admit that it sure is looking barren from a PlayStation Studios perspective. Whether or not it matters or not to the wider market, of course, is another thing entirely, as the vacancy of exclusives hasn't halted PS5's sales dominance whatsoever. Other news this week includes conflicting reports concerning Sony's one-time timed PS5-exclusive KOTOR remake, the leak of Dragon's Dogma's 2 release date, the exit of Returnal's director from Housemarque, and more. As always, listener inquiries help us wrap everything up. Can Netflix really produce a quality BioShock film? Which game series really hit their stride with the second release? What happens to our digital games libraries when we die? Did Colin watch Oppenheimer on his phone simply to annoy Chris? Head to https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED and use code SACRED to save an additional 10% off your order today. Build your credit up at https://www.chime.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 27 November 2023

#281 | Purge Me Now of Thoughts of Blaming You

Rocksteady's long-in-development multiplayer-centric Suicide Squad project has finally reemerged in anticipation of its February 2024 release on PlayStation 5, and the reception has been mixed at best. Kill the Justice League is entering a tough market wielding an oft-failed commercial strategy, but it's also true that DC products have the potential to be huge, and WB yearns for this style of game to truly hit. There's another possibility too, though: That everyone involved has made a very bad mistake and wasted nearly a decade on a boondoggle. Let's talk it through. Then: PlayStation Portal finally arrives, our beloved PlayStation 4 turns 10, Spider-Man 2 and PlayStation 5 dominate the sales charts, and more. Plus: Is DLC, expansion, and MTX pricing officially out-of-control? Will PlayStation premiere a game at the upcoming Game Awards? Could skill-based matchmaking be backfiring on audiences? Will one listener accept that he's attending a furry convention because he's in love with his best friend? Head to https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED and use code SACRED to save an additional 10% off your order today. Get 25% off your first order, plus free shipping at https://www.meundies.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 20 November 2023

#280 | Hiroki Totoki Literature Club

Sony Corp's quarterly financials have finally arrived, and they carry within good news for the PlayStation brand. PS5 is selling briskly, third party games are moving, monthly active users are steady, and so on. But this recent report portends rougher times ahead, too, especially when it comes to PlayStation's vaunted dozen-or-so 'games-as-a-service' that once promised to help shepherd in a new era of Sony exclusive. And all of this against the backdrop of a mysteriously-exiting CEO? With Concord confirmed for 2024, Bungie looking a little bit like a lemon, and a potential Twisted Metal teaser embedded in a recent live-action trailer, the reality is: We have much to discuss. Plus: Grand Theft Auto VI's reveal trailer is coming in December, Sony will be co-funding and co-producing Nintendo's The Legend of Zelda film, BioWare continues to tease Mass Effect for some reason, Embracer's collapse continues unabated, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! PlayStation Portal is right around the corner. What's our excitement level? Nearly a million people have already Platinumed Spider-Man 2. Does this data have significance? PSVR2's coverage is virtually non-existent on Sacred Symbols. Is a lack of media attention partially responsible for the peripheral's soft reception? World War III lurks right around the corner. Which military job would be the best fit for us as individuals when we inevitably get enlisted? Head to https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED and use code SACRED to save an additional 10% off your order today. Get 20% off your first order and a free gram at https://www.hellomood.com and use code SACRED This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy at try at https://www.betterhelp.com/symbols and get on your way to being your best self Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 13 November 2023

#279 | You Wore Our Expectations Like an Armored Suit

Layoffs at Bungie are just the latest in a line of labor issues for PlayStation and its studios in recent months, but as usual, there's great dissonance afoot. Consider this: PS5 is selling briskly, Spider-Man 2 is a critical and commercial smash-hit, and high demand for Sony's product persists as we enter the generation's fourth year. So how can the day-to-day news be so bad when the end result is so positive? Between employee tribulation, an exiting CEO, a fired legendary producer, and more, just what's going on behind-the-scenes, anyway? Are Sony's hard-earned years of goodwill evaporating? Other news this week includes word of a fresh PlayStation 5/Modern Warfare III bundle (and peculiarity about the game's Trophies), rumors of an expansion for God of War: Ragnarok, vague updates on SEGA's mega-expensive so-called 'Super Game,' and more. Listener inquiries end our show, as always. Is 2023 an unusually good industry year specifically because of COVID delays? Would Sony ever put PlayStation Stars on PS5? What does the future hold for Capcom's behemoth Resident Evil franchise? Will Chris get a vanity license plate that reads SACRDBOY? Head to https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED and use code SACRED to save an additional 10% off your order today. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 6 November 2023

#278 | Only Skepticism Will Save You

These are undoubtedly strange times in the PlayStation world. As if getting a new CEO next fiscal year wasn't enough of a shakeup, the brand has also lost (in an apparent firing) their long-time Head of Internal Production Connie Booth, someone who has been with Sony since the late '80s and who helped bring to market such titans as Crash Bandicoot, Spyro, Ratchet & Clank, Uncharted, The Last of Us, and more. With fresh layoffs hitting in-house teams like Media Molecule and support hubs like Visual Arts -- and with an increasingly barren upcoming exclusive schedule made even worse by Factions' apparent cancellation -- is it time to panic? Signals are mixed, after all. Spider-Man 2 is PlayStation Studios' fastest-selling title ever and a banger in its own right, and PlayStation 5's console sales are meteoric with or without first and second party offerings. Naturally, we take time to talk about both the big news and the big game in great detail. Plus: Listener inquiries! How're we feeling about Alan Wake 2? What in god's name is going on with the Metal Gear Solid Collection? Should Sony attempt to replicate Nintendo's development continuity in order to extract similar results? Just what is Dustin doing with that figurine in the jar? Build your credit up at https://www.chime.com/sacred Get 20% off your first order and a free gram of flower at https://www.hellomood.com and use code SACRED Get 25% off your first order at https://www.meundies.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 30 October 2023

#277 | Is the Skinsuit Complete?

We've talked about it ad nauseam on this very show: With a competitor like Microsoft, Sony has every reason to be concerned. The Xbox brand is willing to spend however much on whatever's out there, and whether or not it all adds up in the end doesn't exactly matter. After all, only 6¢ of every dollar Microsoft earns comes from gaming, and that's something they want to enhance no matter the price. But in cobbling together its hodgepodge skinsuit of developers over the years, is their expansion now complete? And -- perhaps more interestingly -- will Sony respond? If yes, how? The Activision situation is finally behind us, so let's reflect, predict, and celebrate as we move beyond one massive distraction. One of the biggest in industry history, actually. Other news this week includes Minecraft's bonkers sales milestone, rumors of PC Trophies, murmurings of a Rise of the Ronin playtest in London, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! What's the perfect FPS to play if you've never played a shooter before? How does a game like Skull Island: Rise of Kong even come to exist at all? Should the Metal Gear Solid franchise be played in order of release, or chronologically? Is Dustin intrigued by the return of Chris Chan? Head to https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED and use code SACRED to save an additional 10% off your order today. Get 20% off your first order and a free gram of flower at https://www.hellomood.com and use code SACRED This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at https://www.betterhelp.com/symbols and get on your way to being your best self Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 23 October 2023

#276 | Second Life

The new era of PlayStation 5 is here, at least in terms of a hardware revision. Like every PlayStation console before it, PS5's upgrade comes packing a smaller form factor, and increased storage and an optional disc drive sweetens the deal. But this so-called PS5 Slim comes with a peculiarly stubborn price that isn't reflective of generations past. Could it be that the dueling pressures of inflation and monetary conversion rates have finally come to bear? Either way, one thing's for certain: These new consoles will sell by the millions upon millions in the months to come, and if you want an old-style PS5, you better act before it's too late! Other news this week revolves around crescendoing rumors concerning a PS5 port of The Last of Us: Part II, fresh PS+ offerings, and more. Listener inquiries close our show, as is tradition. Is there anything actually there with these Disney/Electronic Arts rumors? Could right-of-repair change the way we interact with our hardware and peripherals? How come PlayStation doesn't get any credit for Sony's mobile success with Fate Grand Order? Does Chris think Brazillian is a language? Head to https://www.tryfum.com/SACRED and use code SACRED to save an additional 10% off your order today. Get 50% off plus free shipping at https://www.hellofresh.com/50sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 16 October 2023

#275 | Attention Deficit Disorder

A light smoke is emitting from sunny Santa Monica, but is there cause for concern? Sony's crown jewel studio Naughty Dog has recently let some contractors go, and -- worse yet, if reporting is to be believed -- its long-awaited Factions spin-off has been shelved, with an exiting bigwig and an unknown future. When combined with SEGA's cancellation of Creative Assembly's Hyenas, which was apparently the publisher's most expensive project ever, we simply have to ask: Do games-as-a-service have the bright and airy future once widely-assumed? Or is there a significant deficit of collective attention, time, money, and inclination necessary to support the long-tail of all of these games? Maybe Jim Ryan made the wrong bet, after all. Plus: Spider-Man 2 is the perfect length, GT Sport is going offline, KOTOR's PS5 remake enters a new and even more mysterious phase, Bungie's virtue signaling backfires, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! Will Assassin's Creed: Mirage satiate the old-school AC fanbase? How do we feel about the proper pronunciation of Final Fantasy VII's Cait Sith? If your girlfriend is jealous of your in-game relationships, is that a red flag? Has Colin's psychosis grown to such a degree that it rarely surprises his co-hosts anymore? Breakup habits with FUM. Save 10% at https://www.tryfum.com and use code Sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 9 October 2023

#274 | Jim Ryan Is Sick of Flyin'

PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan -- sometimes known on this show as Cryin' Jim for whatever reason -- is officially retiring from Sony next spring. Why? The demand of incessant travel, which is wearing him awfully thin after all these years (he's expected to be on three continents each and every month, an absurdity). He's been with the company since before the original PlayStation launched in '94, and his business and marketing acumen saw him rise the ranks of Sony's gaming outfit, first in Europe and then globally. A far cry in presentation from other notable personalities from within his ranks like Jack Tretton, Shuhei Yoshida, or even Shawn Layden, Ryan's more austere approach was undeniably sterile. But the results of his tenure also speak for themselves. He leaves PlayStation in an even more dominant position than he found it when he ascended to the CEO position in 2019 -- PS5's success throughout the pandemic in particular is already the stuff of industry legend -- and naturally, we have a lot to say about what the future holds following his exit. Plus: News about the recent Sony hack, Helldivers II's price, layoffs at Epic and SEGA, Far Cry 7 details, Capcom's stance on game pricing, trouble in the world of collectibles, and much more. Then: Listener inquiries. Is reaction fodder the lowest form of content imaginable? How do we feel about product placement in games? Will review bombing ever be mitigated? When can we expect Chris to join OnlyFans (and for how much)? This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at https://www.betterhelp.com/symbols and get on your way to being your best self Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 2 October 2023

#273 | They Are Who We Thought They Were

We have PlayStation news to get to and through, of course -- and lots of it! -- but so many of you wrote into the show about the recent Xbox leak that we couldn't just ignore it. And really, nothing we learned from the treasure trove of documents one way or the other should come as much of a surprise, so we'll let a famous Coach Green quote do the talking instead. Has the games industry let Microsoft off the hook?! Plus: PS5 sales surge in Europe, The Division 3 is real, Final Fantasy VII Remake surpasses seven million copies sold, NES' Contra is getting a remake, and more. And yes, we talk about the biggest news of all: Spider-Man 2 is gold! We're only a month away now. As usual, we wrap things up with listener inquiries from you, our dear audience. Does it make more sense to wait for a game to be patched and content-complete instead of succumbing to day one pressure? Remember Invizimals? Will Final Fantasy VII Rebirth really be 100 hours long? Did Dustin return from Japan penniless and inundated with anime figurines? Get started at https://www.chime.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 25 September 2023

#272 | The Unanimity of the Unity

A State of Play stream was announced right before this week's episode, so naturally we watched it, and our thoughts are within. Topics of interest from Sony's showing include release dates for Helldivers II and Final Fantasy VII Rebirth, new PS5 and DualSense colors, an open beta for Foamstars, Resident Evil 4 Remake DLC, and more. However, all of that news is covered in a pickup, because we recorded a huge show for you without all of that. Have you heard what's going on with the popular engine Unity? You should familiarize yourself with the situation, because it's a fascinating one that best represents the strained nexus between creating games and paying for them. Plus: Roblox is finally coming to PlayStation, Square Enix is 'in trouble,' but not really, PS5 gets new firmware while fresh PS+ games come to the Extra and Premium tiers, and more. Then: Listener inquiries! Should Colin finally break down and play Skyrim? Are artists really more important than the suits that often oversee them? Have cinematic trailers gone too far? Will Dustin be kidnapped by the Yakuza in Japan, forcing a hefty cash payment? Join us for an unusually old-school episode of Sacred Symbols. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 18 September 2023

#271 | Great Artists Steal

Hollywood's labor problem may not be an isolated event in the entertainment industry for much longer. A recent press release from actors union SAG-AFTRA indicates that their members will vote to authorize a strike upon further negotiations with 10 major entities in gaming, including the likes of EA, Take Two, and even Sony-owned developer Insomniac. After all, the guild represent voice and performance actors in many of our favorite games. Yes, the consequences for not getting a deal done could extend far and wide. But it's also important to make note of an important fact: Otherwise-soulless mega corporations that exist entirely to propagate creative content should appropriately pay the creative people that fuel them. And yes, AI plays an inevitable -- but dangerous! -- role in the future of the humanities, and needs to be accounted for. Other news this week hinges on Final Fantasy XVI DLC chatter, tons of Starfield-related talk (since Chris is obsessed), and some new announcements, release dates, and so on. We wrap things up with listener inquiries touching a myriad of topics, including hoarding items in RPGs, the importance of playing a game right when it launches, the preposterous GTAVI/$150 rumors, and fighting back against a neighbor who won't leave your lawnmower alone no matter how much you may want him to. Go to https://www.hellofresh.com/50sacred and use code 50sacred for 50% off plus 15% off the next 2 months Download DraftKings with code SACRED and get $200 in bonus bets Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 11 September 2023

#270 | PlayStation Minus

For the first time since 2016, Sony has increased the price of its PlayStation Plus subscription, and the torches and pitchforks are out en masse. See, there's no doubt the increases are large -- $20 a year more at minimum is nothing to sneeze at -- but it's also important to assess what the service was when it launched in 2010 at $50, and what it's become today at $80 and above. Now's a better time than ever to truly assess what you even get out of PS+ to begin with; the answers people arrive at will be vastly different, as you'll witness during our extensive conversation. We also touch on other big news this week -- PlayStation Portal gets dated, Volition closes its doors after three decades, Sea of Stars does big numbers, and more -- and we wrap things up with a litany of listener inquiries, as is our tradition. What are our current thoughts on PlayStation Stars? Is the console gaming gender gap officially closed? Could big sites and creators do more to avoid spoiling products? Will Colin ever recover from Dustin and Chris not understanding his Can't Hardly Wait reference? This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at https://www.betterhelp.com/symbols and get on your way to being your best self Download DraftKings with code Sacred and get $200 in bonus bets Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 4 September 2023

#269 | Second Screen Experiments

The long-awaited Project Q is officially called PlayStation Portal, and the reaction to it has been surprisingly divisive. Priced at $200 and intended purely as a remote play option for PS5, some potential players see obvious use cases while others think this entire initiative is a waste of time and money. Here on Sacred, we have three different opinions to present you with about the future of Portal, and why it might be a mightier machine than some think. Plus: Sony announces new high-end audio devices for PlayStation while gobbling up a boutique headphone company, release dates have been revealed for games like Granblue Fantasy: Relink and Persona 3, BioWare lays off 50 employees, Geoff Keighley finds himself under siege on-stage at Gamescom, and more news followed -- as always -- by listener inquiries. Has game writing hit an all-time low? Which game world (if any) would we like to visit? Will we ever escape the era of the sequel? Is Colin a secret glizzy gobbler? Start building your credit at https://www.chime.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 28 August 2023

#268 | Baldur's Great

In early September, prominent CRPG Baldur's Gate III migrates from PC to PlayStation 5, and it sounds like it may just be what the doctor ordered. A deep role-playing experience chock-full of choice and consequence -- and layered with a thick patina of polish -- could potentially sell millions of copies on PS5. Will the critically acclaimed, purportedly amazing experience successfully catapult from computer to console? And should we expect it to stem the tide until Spider-Man 2 arrives? Other items this week include fresh release dates for Assassin's Creed: Mirage and Alan Wake II, the reveal of new TMNT and South Park games, a horrible-looking Walking Dead title arriving this fall, and an inopportune quote from Square Enix executive producer Yoshi-P that unintentionally fed eager fanboys. Listener inquiries round things out, per usual. Why do people encumber themselves with a backlog? How do we navigate our personal relationships when it comes to making the time necessary to play games? Is Sony's silence starting to become conspicuous, and even worrying? Will Colin strike back on Dustin's bad take-calling? Get 50% off plus free shipping at https://www.hellofresh.com/50sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 21 August 2023

#267 | Funny Money

Is PlayStation doing well? It's easy to answer "yes" after reading Sony's recent quarterly financial reports, which shows exploding levels of revenue, with a lower-than-expected profit margin scaring markets (even as the Japanese behemoth remains in the black). Then again, that something as relatively cheap as Bungie's acquisition could in part affect the firm's wider earnings is a sign that Sony simply isn't on the level of its competition when it comes to purchasing power, and thus it needs to be more deliberate and cautious. Should we be worried about PlayStation's trajectory, specifically with a seeming dearth of known first and second party games beyond Spider-Man 2 and Helldivers 2? Heck, did Final Fantasy XVI undersell after all, potentially fracturing their relationship with Square Enix? As usual, we've much to discuss. Other news this week includes an analysis of Rockstar's questionable Red Dead Redemption PS4 port, controversy surrounding PSVR2, Twisted Metal's excellent performance on Peacock, and much more. Listener inquiries wrap things up, as usual. Should we tip our cap to Fortnite for a job well done? Are Nintendo's recent patents a step too far for game development? Why do some people think Starfield will fail when it's obvious it won't? Will Colin survive hearing a list of his perceived worst takes? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 14 August 2023

#266 | Mysteries of the Universe

On this week's episode of Sacred Symbols, we delve into a series of perplexing and puzzling enigmas. Will Helldivers launch in October, as rumors indicate? Could PS5's new firmware update allow desperate husbands to dodge the ire of their angry wives? Should Anita Sarkeesian's sunsetting Feminist Frequency brand hold a positive legacy in our industry? Why is EA bringing Star Wars Jedi: Survivor backwards to PS4 in the year of our lord 2023? All of that, plus more news and a series of listener inquiries that will simply add more question marks to an already question mark-laden description. Are people who invert the Y-axis (like Colin) touched in the head? Is Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart too short? Will PS5 Pro disrupt the development flow of regular PlayStation 5 games? Is Chris racist against aliens from space? This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at https://www.betterhelp.com/symbols and get on your way to being your best self Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 7 August 2023

#265 | Total Mindshare

At 40 million units sold after 32 months, PlayStation 5 is only half-a-quarter behind PS4's prodigious sales pace. This is a big deal for a console that was launched into a pandemic economy that made it extremely difficult for people to find a machine for nearly two straight years, not to mention afford one, what with eroding purchasing power due to inflation. Now, the question becomes -- with Project Q and a PS5 Pro around the corner -- can PlayStation 5 continue its meteoric sales trend? Plus: Sony's investment into China continues to pay off, with a trio of new China Hero Games revealed for PlayStation 5, while it appears that Insomniac is making a third AAA game concurrent to Spider-Man 2 and Wolverine, which is mighty intriguing. We wrap up our recording, as we always do, with listener inquiries. What does the word "retro" mean in today's gaming environment? With recent happenings, is it high time we get a UFO abduction game? Will Sekiro go down as one of FromSoft's most-revered titles? Is Arizona about to disintegrate off the face of the Earth? Sign up for Chime at https://www.chime.com/sacred Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 31 July 2023

#264 | Modern Lawfare

It looks like we can finally -- finally! -- stop talking about Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard, at least on this podcast. That's because PlayStation settled on what it frankly could have always had, namely a 10 year deal for access to Call of Duty that runs into the mid-2030s, keeping the cash-cow franchise on Sony hardware for a long time to come. Is this an ideal situation for Sony? Certainly not. But that's their problem, not ours, and at least we can flip the page to make way for more interesting topics! Other news this week includes an interesting, years-late update to Dreams that could have at one time saved it from inevitable failure, drama surrounding the PC launch of Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, release dates for Firewall Ultra and Goodbye Volcano High, and -- perhaps most importantly -- PlayStation 5's meteoric sales, as it continues to move at an extremely brisk pace around the globe. Listener inquiries wrap the show up, per usual, touching on topics like Baldur's Gate III, the potential return of Einhander, the PlayStation-centric censorship of indie title LISA, and thoughts on whether Colin compliments Dustin enough, which apparently he doesn't. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 24 July 2023

#263 | Endless Horizons

Sony finds itself in a pickle, or so it seems from the outside. With ever-burgeoning development costs comes the reality that new IP is an increasingly-risky endeavor. The safer and more reliable route, it could be argued, is in doubling-down on what works. And let's be real: Guerrilla-developed Horizon works. The two core games have sold 33 million units combined across PS4, PS5, and PC. The question, though, is how much does Horizon work? Could a good thing become a bad thing through simple repetition? This week, we discuss the future of Horizon (not to mention the past of Killzone) via reporting from an enlightening panel conducted with the leadership of Guerrilla, and we're forced to confront a reality where Horizon never truly disappears. Other notable news this week includes the retirement of legendary Naughty Dog co-president Evan Wells, The Last of Us' ridiculously successful run of Emmy nominations, Sony's new investments into live service, and more. Inquiries from the audience end the show, as usual. What does SEGA's unionization mean for the future of industry labor? Can 2D games simply be too difficult for some people to handle? Is D&D more nerdy than anime? If you had to stop at a gas station right now, what would be your go-to snack and drink choices? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 17 July 2023

#262 | Well It's A Dirty Job, But Someone's Gotta Do It

Like a meteor from the sky -- or perhaps a capsule drop from orbit -- Sony second party partner Arrowhead randomly released new information about its upcoming co-op-based third-person shooter Helldivers II, including new gameplay footage. Arcadey, difficult, and sarcastic, Helldivers II aims to recognizably evolve 2015's PS4, PS3, and Vita original, and a 2023 release window has thankfully been reiterated. Let's discuss the promise of killing bugs and fellow humans (intentionally or otherwise) in the name of Super-Earth. We also go through recent rumors surrounding a purported The Last of Us: Part III and the upcoming Team Ninja PS5 exclusive Rise of the Ronin, chronicle ongoing troubles with PlayStation's nascent mobile initiative, and more, and we wrap things up with a salvo of listener inquiries. What are our feelings on 2D Soulsborne games? Do box office bombs in the movie space portend a rough future for our AAA industry? How could Sony best celebrate its various IP in a single product? Will Daffy Duck star in Kingdom Hearts IV? This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at https://www.betterhelp.com/symbols and get on your way to being your best self Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

Transcribed - Published: 10 July 2023

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