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MOOD SWINGS #7
God of War and the toxicity of spoilers.

MOOD SWINGS
By MIKE HAZLETON & JAY TEE
01/05/18

MOOD SWINGS?

Besides being the obvious side effect to a hormonal outburst, ‘Mood Swings’ is a weekly editorial crafted by our editor Jay Tee, alongside contributions from the JTGA team. It’s like a series of extended tweets, ranting or raving about something terrible / great that’s happened to us that week in our gaming lives.

It serves as a weekly collection of random musings designed to provide a snapshot of what we’re doing, things you should be excited for, and stuff to avoid as you navigate the choppy waters of this wonderfully unpredictable hobby.

Anything, from reactions to a new game announcement, surprising breaking news, to our cat just nibbled our thumb sticks, can be found here. Each “Mood Swing” will be tagged with either a green, yellow, or red Tarp badge. This represents a visual indicator of our reaction.

LET US KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS ON THIS ARTICLE!
LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW, TWEET US @JAYTEE_GA, OR E-MAIL: EDITOR@JTGA.CO.UK.

TAG THAT SPOILER - YouTube and social media thrive on being ahead of the curve, but recently their relaxed (and arguably non-existent) policies towards tagging spoilers have left me feeling cold. Specifically, the ending of God of War. Now I’m fully aware of the ‘internet blackout’ approach, where you simply eliminate all browsing time in an effort to remain in the dark. And I’m also smart enough to to avoid places like Reddit, N4G, and other enthusiast websites that tend to be a haven for this sort of thing.

But when you innocently load up YouTube to check out a podcast, or head onto Twitter to message a friend, getting blasted with spoilers in the thumbnails / titles of recommended videos, or being shown spoilerific posts from people you don’t actually follow, is infuriating and perplexing in equal measure. Surely there has to be a way for these platforms to provide better filters to users, or improved options for tagging, that will sort through the noise and prevent folks from being exposed to unwanted reveals?

The tricky part of this equation is determining what constitutes a spoiler. Some people don’t mind knowing exactly what characters appear in a particular film or game, or have no problem watching the ending ahead of time. But there should be a way for people to remain connected online without fear of having the latest blockbuster film or videogame ruined in a matter of seconds. I’m still massively enjoying my time with God of War, but knowing what I know about how it all wraps up has left me with an inescapable tinge of disappointment. - JAY TEE

PHIL SPILLS - With E3 not too far away and me being an Xbox enthusiast, I often scan Phil Spencer's E3 conversations for titbits that might give me an indication of whether to set phasers to hype, or just jump straight out of an airlock, ahead of this year's conference. In response to a question about first party, story driven games featuring the sentence "I hope you guys consider building a IP like that, that's one of Xbox' s best genres", he replied with a cryptic "Yep".

He also confirmed that Microsoft are currently featuring Japanese publishers on stage this year, and that he sees them working on a Japanese-developed exclusive in the future. Now Phil is always cagey and makes sure he never promises anything, but it's enough to get me eager for E3. I am still cautious enough to know that Microsoft are unlikely to have the best show of the big three, but this really is the year they need to knock one out of the park. - MIKE  

There are a lot of delightful surprises sprinkled throughout God of War’s sweeping narrative. Also, I am Groot.

STATE OF OKAY - Released this month is Undead Labs' State of Decay 2. The first game was Xbox Live Arcade's fastest selling game (in the days before Minecraft), and it was a pretty polished zombie survival sim only really missing a bit more variety and multiplayer. While unlikely to get perfect tens (hello God of War), the sequel should address these issues and is a nice success story of Microsoft giving a smaller developer a platform to shine. - MIKE

COMET OF DREAMS - Fortnite’s Season 4 update has dropped. I love the way they’ve handled the build up and expectations surrounding the comet, which had been teased for weeks as Season 3 of Battle Royale wrapped up. Epic have, in many ways, created a sort of narrative multiplayer experience, and it really works. The changes to the map, particularly along the Eastern side, have created new points of interest that should hopefully drag people away from Tilted Towers. At least for now. - JAY TEE