Features

Pure PlayStation Plays: Week 208 – We’ve Been Playing Four Years

This week’s Pure PlayStation Plays feature is a little bit special. While the site itself turned four years old earlier this year, this particular feature is having its fourth birthday today. Because 208 issues divided by 52 weeks in a year is four years. That’s maths. I’m clever! (I was reminded by Jason…)

So, this week we’re doing something a little different to celebrate. You already get an idea of who we are from the words we write every day, as well as the reviews and features we put out each month, but this week’s PPP is going to be a bit more personal.

We’ve all answered a few questions, and down below is where you’ll find the answers. It’s just a bit of fun, and these days fun matters more than ever, even if it’s crap, cringe-worthy fun. Enjoy the read, and have a great weekend!

– Chris

Jason Frye

Who are you?

I’m probably your dad, but we’re waiting until after the next commercial break on Maury to find out. You can send those child support orders to Jason Frye. (Ed – Da-da? Daddy?)

What noise do people make when they want your attention?

Sir! Sir! You can’t go in there! (Ed – There’s a reason we call you ‘The Deviant’)

Are you happy with that name? If you could swap names with a video game character, who would it be and why?

I’ve never known anything else, but I’d probably go to just one name. Call me Snake.

What’s the very earliest game you can remember playing, and would you still play it today?

It’s a tough call, but one of the earliest was playing Blaster Master or Spy Hunter on the NES. I haven’t played them in forever, but I would happily give them a go today.

We’re all Pure PlayStation here, but what other consoles do you play on, if any? No wrong answers. We’re all friends here.

Due to time and money, I am mostly PS4, but the Switch’s portability is fantastic. I’m open to the new Xbox earning some of my business next-gen.

Nathan Drake – meandering murderer, or hero?

Neither. He’s a likeable treasure hunter with a boatload of justifiable self-defense cases.

Kratos – sick killer or a loving father?

I met Kratos during his murderous rage phase, and that’s always how I’ll like him best. The new Kratos who attends a book club and goes to Home Depot on the weekends is a good neighbor, but I miss partying with that other guy.

Sly Cooper – Thieving little rat or loveable rogue?

I can’t remember actually playing a Sly Cooper game. Oops! (Ed – What are you even doing here? Don’t answer yet, that’s actually a question later on.)

If you could only take two games to a desert island, what would they be?

I can never think of two games I want to play forever, so I would choose Minecraft to teach me to build basic structures and Far Cry to teach me how to live off the land and kill everything.

Single-player or multiplayer?

99.999% single-player and .001% multiplayer with Pure PlayStation people.

Online or local couch multiplayer?

Online is only a pale substitute for the magical experience of couch co-op.

Why do you write about games? What spurs you to sit at your desk and spend valuable time writing for strangers?

I’ve always liked games and liked talking about games, but there weren’t a lot of people around me who shared the same level of passion. Writing news and opinion pieces has been a great outlet for some of that while I try to improve my general writing ability. I’m assuming it will improve.

I also saw a lot of big websites pushing the AAA games and ignoring the smaller, interesting Japanese games that, although niche, deserved wider coverage. These were the games that offered something very different and were stories that I wanted to read. I have the chance to cover them and any other weird or unique games I want now.

Any good memories formed here on Pure PlayStation? Or is it a hell ride you can’t escape from?

I have been extremely fortunate to meet wonderful people here and to learn so much. Looking forward, there is a lot left to accomplish and even more for me to learn, but I’ve loved my time at Pure PlayStation. Not every idea I have is good, but I have the freedom to give it a try.

It makes me grateful. I’m grateful that we are more laid-back than those “I’m a serious game journalist” types that seem to be working for the next Pulitzer. I’m grateful to the people here and the companies who reply to my emails and send us codes. It’s a been a ride, but it’s been a good one. (Ed – Every car crash starts with a nice ride…)

Max Taylor

Who are you?

I’m Max.

What noise do people make when they want your attention?

People usually make the sound of walrus attempting to swallow a rucksack full of peaches when they want my attention. (Ed – Also answers to “oi, vegan!” in the Pure PlayStation chat group.)

Are you happy with that name? If you could swap names with a video game character, who would it be and why?

I am happy with it but you may refer to me by my Metal Gear name which is Drumming Lickable Dwarf Lop

What’s the very earliest game you can remember playing, and would you still play it today?

I remember playing Ape Escape on PS1 with my Dad (Ed – Haha, Jez! This will make sense later, trust me, I’m the Ed) when I was probably 5 or 6. I would absolutely love a remastered collection of all the Ape Escape games, they’re absolute bangers!

We’re all Pure PlayStation here, but what other consoles do you play on, if any? No wrong answers. We’re all friends here.

I have a Switch which at the moment is primarily being used by my partner Hope to play Animal Crossing. When I do find time to play it though, there’s such a great library of games to get stuck into. Currently, I’m a few hours into Astral Chain which I’m absolutely loving.

Nathan Drake – meandering murderer, or hero?

I just find him painfully boring. I love the Uncharted games for their gameplay and cinematic spectacle but their story and characters never really did much for me.

Kratos – sick killer or a loving father?

He’s been both and that’s what makes him such a compelling character. Kratos’ journey from the original God of War games to 2018’s reimagining is about his transition from a being ruthless, revenge-fuelled killer to the purpose and responsibility of fatherhood.

Sly Cooper – Thieving little rat or loveable rogue?

I’ve sadly never played the Sly games (beyond a PS2 demo disk) but he seems like lovely little raccoon boy.

If you could only take two games to a desert island, what would they be?

The Witcher 3 so I can finally get good at Gwent and earn the platinum and Dreams because that’s a million games in one. (Ed – *A million kind of, sorta, mostly not really, games in one.)

Single-player or multiplayer?

Single-player.

Online or local couch multiplayer?

Local couch co-op. (Ed – As a single-player? Liar!)

Why do you write about games? What spurs you to sit at your desk and spend valuable time writing for strangers?

Video games are something I’m always excited and inspired by. Writing about them both allows me to share that passion with others, hopefully exposing them to new experiences, and lets me process my thoughts and feeling for a game in a creative, cathartic way. (Ed – the monthly raffle and my nudes don’t factor in? Fine, no more raffle.)

Any good memories formed here on Pure PlayStation? Or is it a hell ride you can’t escape from?

Despite Chris’ occasionally worrying dictatorial inclinations, its a joy writing for Pure PlayStation. We might all live hundreds of miles apart but I feel close to everyone here. It’s a great group of people that support one another, share their successes and never hesitates to take the piss out of each other.

Speaking of Chris and his dictatorial ways, he once [REDACTED][REDACTED][REDACTED][REDACTED][REDACTED][REDACTED] an actual finger in[REDACTED][REDACTED][REDACTED] mud and blood in the[REDACTED][REDACTED][REDACTED][REDACTED][REDACTED] pigeons[REDACTED][REDACTED][REDACTED] a lawnmower AND a[REDACTED][REDACTED][REDACTED]. So yeah, he’s pretty f[REDACTED] (Ed – Aw, you said I’m pretty! Thanks x)

Hannah Ellis

Who are you?

Who am I? I guess that’s a question I’m still grappling with. (Ed – Have we been using the wrong pronoun? Are you a penguin or something?)

What noise do people make when they want your attention?

I tend to answer to Stupid. It’s because I always had my head in a book when I was younger (still do, to be fair) and my friends were trying to be funny. After that, it stuck. So much so that my Mum uses it to this day. (Ed – Noted!)

Are you happy with that name? If you could swap names with a video game character, who would it be and why?

I don’t mind it. I’m quite the sarcastic pain in the rear as it is (name someone else who was specifically told by a career’s counsellor never to go into hostage negotiation), so it’s quite fitting. But I wouldn’t mind changing that to The Riddler because words are my weapon. Besides, Batman has to remember to put his Batarang away once in a while and give his grey matter some attention instead.

What’s the very earliest game you can remember playing, and would you still play it today?

The earliest game I remember playing is Detective Barbie: The Mystery Cruise, at a time when it was acceptable to push gender stereotypes on to your impressionable offspring. But I’m happy to say it failed miserably – I was playing with trains by Christmas and have made it into my 20s without ever wearing heels. I think I would play it again, though, if only to prove that there was more going on on that cruise ship than just missing art.

We’re all Pure PlayStation here, but what other consoles do you play on, if any? No wrong answers. We’re all friends here.

I spend a lot of time on the Switch, mainly because it’s so convenient to pick up and pause. But I’ve also got a healthy stack of old games and consoles, which come out at least once a week. It’s nice to see where video games have come from. Not to mention, most of them are better than those we get today.

Nathan Drake – meandering murderer, or hero?

Nathan Drake is a wannabe Indiana Jones, and for that, I can’t forgive him. (Ed – Digital high-five!)

Kratos – sick killer or a loving father?

I’d argue Kratos is the homeschooling Dad everyone is aspiring to be like at the moment. He just happens to have blood on his hands as well as crayon on the walls.

Sly Cooper – Thieving little rat or loveable rogue?

I shan’t condone thieving. However, it’s a bit like magic – when it’s done well, it’s quite mesmerising. So, how about – mesmerising yet unlawful?

If you could only take two games to a desert island, what would they be?

One would have to be Yakuza 0. That game has started a love affair that I will probably never shake. But the second is a little trickier. I’d say dirt Rally, but let’s not even pretend to think an airline would let me take the wheel and pedals on as hand luggage. And I refuse to pay a premium for the hold. So, on that basis, probably The Sims 1. They’ve only gone downhill since. (Ed – No, dear, they’ve gone online but you live on a broadband-less boat.)

Single-player or multiplayer?

Single-player. But only because I’m too tight to buy a second controller.

Online or local couch multiplayer?

Local couch multiplayer – with the dogs as P2. You laugh, but you should see them at FIFA.

Why do you write about games? What spurs you to sit at your desk and spend valuable time writing for strangers?

I write about games because I’m very interested in the industry as a business model. And there’s no better way of keeping track of what’s what than relaying the daily activities with our audience. On a less serious note, I’m just trying to make up for my very poor trophy collection.

Any good memories formed here on Pure PlayStation? Or is it a hell ride you can’t escape from?

I think my standout moments are the updates on what ‘Chris the Caped Crusader’ has been up to. He’s a superhero with a surplus of shoes. And an inhaler (I think.). But don’t let that fascade fool you! (Ed – Chris sounds like an absolute legend, doesn’t he?)

Jeremy Peterson

Who are you?

My name is Jeremy obviously. (Ed – OK, Mr Obviously. Punctuate sentences much?)

What noise do people make when they want your attention?

My family and friends in North America call me Jer, while everyone else calls me Jez. When I was young and stupid, I didn’t like the name cause it sounded like a little boy’s name. Now that I’m old, I like it just fine.

What’s the very earliest game you can remember playing, and would you still play it today?

I remember playing Chopper Command and Pac Man on my cousins Atari, but my fondest early memories of gaming were on my NES. It came with Super Mario Brothers but I convinced my mom it didn’t come with any games, so she bought me the Goonies 2, and shortly after that, Zelda and Dragon Warrior. I’ve played emulated versions of The Goonies and that and it didn’t age well, but I still play Dragon Warrior every once in a while.

We’re all Pure PlayStation here, but what other consoles do you play on, if any? No wrong answers. We’re all friends here.

I love my PS4, PSVR, and the Switch, but VR is what most excites me in gaming today. I’m using an Oculus Quest, but I mostly play it as a Rift S with the Link cable and my PC. I’m anxious for the next-gen VR systems and can’t wait to throw my money at them.

Nathan Drake – meandering murderer, or hero?

For my money, Drake is a hero… with barely contained murderous tendencies.

Kratos – sick killer or a loving father?

I’m going to rescue myself from this question on the grounds that I don’t know what a loving father acts like. And happy Mother’s day to moms around the world. (Ed – Told you it would make sense later!)

Sly Cooper – Thieving little rat or loveable rogue?

Sly is a lovable rogue ’cause those games are basically cartoons. And cartoon rats are (somehow) not disgusting vermin.

If you could only take two games to a desert island, what would they be?

My desert island games are hard to pick. These two are mistakes that I know I would regret, but mistakes are what I do so here goes: Salt and Sanctuary on my Vita. Vita? I know. And 2MD VR Football. What kind of moron chooses a $12 game as his desert island game? I do. Plus, I always wanted to be a quarterback. (Ed – But Daddy wasn’t loving and supportive enough? And now you’re here, at Pure bloody PlayStation…)

Single-player or multiplayer?

I play more single-player, but I love playing multiplayer games with friends, especially VR Shooters.

Online or local couch multiplayer?

I despise split-screen, however, so no couch co-op for me.

Why do you write about games? What spurs you to sit at your desk and spend valuable time writing for strangers?

Writing about games suits me because as I’ve gotten older, I don’t have as much time to play. So you might say that writing about them allows me to still enjoy the gaming world in a more adult fashion. And by “more adult”, I mean more lame and disappointing, of course.

Any good memories formed here on Pure PlayStation? Or is it a hell ride you can’t escape from?

My fondest memories of my time at Pure PlayStation is definitely when we could fill out a full squad of Firewall Zero Hour with members of the PP team. We definitely don’t do that as much as we should. The runner up was when we almost all met in LA for E3 just before the world decided to take the year off. Maybe next year… (Ed – Sad face… fuck you, Rona.)

Stuart McLean

Who are you?

Stuart Mclean.

What noise do people make when they want your attention?

styoo·uht 

Are you happy with that name? If you could swap names with a video game character, who would it be and why?

Cloud Strife is the first that springs to mind as my favourite gaming character but not sure if I’d want his name, as a teacher Mr Strife has a certain ring to it. Maybe Master Chief because then I’d be called Mr Chief! (Ed – Only one chief around here. You remember that… or else.)

What’s the very earliest game you can remember playing, and would you still play it today?

The earliest game I can remember playing would be Alex the Kid on the Sega Master System, my very first console.

We’re all Pure PlayStation here, but what other consoles do you play on, if any? No wrong answers. We’re all friends here.

Xbox One, Switch, Stadia.

Nathan Drake – meandering murderer, or hero?

Hero. (Ed – dickhead.)

Kratos – sick killer or a loving father?

Sick killer turned loving father. Does that count? (Ed – Who cares?)

Sly Cooper – Thieving little rat or loveable rogue?

Thieving little rat trying to be a lovable rogue. (Ed – In another life, Stuart would’ve been a politician with answers like these!)

If you could only take two games to a desert island, what would they be?

Final Fantasy 7 (original not the remake), and Minecraft (I think). (Ed – Therefore you are.)

Single-player or multiplayer?

Single-player – I’m a loner (although Lone Wolf sounds better) (Ed – Yeah, better than Stuart no mates.)

Online or local couch multiplayer?

Online multiplayer.

Why do you write about games? What spurs you to sit at your desk and spend valuable time writing for strangers?

It’s all about the games! Writing about games has made me play plenty that I wouldn’t normally choose play.

Any good memories formed here on Pure PlayStation? Or is it a hell ride you can’t escape from?

One of my favourite memories of working at PurePlaystation (working? Is that what we do??) are the few times when us PurePlaystationers get together and thrash it out about gaming, either during our group chats or even better over a good online gaming session.

Yasmine Hubbard

Who are you?

I’m Yasmine or what I prefer to be called is Yas. After a lot of grunts and several shouts of “OI”– it’s usually followed by “Hubs” that is an abbreviation of my last name.

What noise do people make when they want your attention?

After a lot of grunts and several shouts of “OI”– it’s usually followed by “Hubs” that is an abbreviation of my last name.

Are you happy with that name? If you could swap names with a video game character, who would it be and why?

Sometimes it comes across someone is telling me off rather than getting my attention. I’ll go with Bison from Street Fighter because he is the absolute opposite of me, and who doesn’t want to aspire for villainous tendencies? (Ed – Yes, let the evil flow through you!)

What’s the very earliest game you can remember playing, and would you still play it today?

My older sister owned an NES and Sega Mega Drive before I was even able to walk, so there has always been a game console in my home. However, my earliest memory was playing Sonic the Hedgehog 2. I would absolutely still play it today. Sonic is still one of my favourite gaming icons of all time. (Ed – Sonic 2 is a beast. I’m glad you managed to play that When You Were Young.)

We’re all Pure PlayStation here, but what other consoles do you play on, if any? No wrong answers. We’re all friends here.

Nintendo has always been a guilty pleasure of mine, especially the Pokémon games. So I’ll often find myself going back to the 3DS or the GameCube every once in a while. I did buy a Halo 5 Edition Xbox One the other year, but it’s still boxed and un-opened in the corner of my room. Does that count as another console I own? (Ed – Open that Xbox right now and play the GOAT… Crackdown 3.)

Nathan Drake – meandering murderer, or hero?

I think the Ludonarrative Dissonance trophy in Uncharted 4 answers all. Gold trophies speak louder than words.

Kratos – sick killer or a loving father?

Being a good father doesn’t always mean being a loving father. However, Kratos may have taken that sentiment a little too far.

Sly Cooper – Thieving little rat or loveable rogue?

Don’t tear me apart too badly but, I haven’t actually played a Sly Cooper game so couldn’t possibly comment. Whenever I get that platformer itch a certain purple dragon always appears on my screen. (Ed – Don’t do drugs.)

If you could only take two games to a desert island, what would they be?

Kingdom Hearts 2 and Suikoden 5. They’re also coincidentally my two favourite games of all time. You only want to be surrounded by the best.

Single-player or multiplayer?

Single-player. Narrative driven stories are the way to go.

Online or local couch multiplayer?

I enjoy both, but I lean towards local couch multiplayer.

Why do you write about games? What spurs you to sit at your desk and spend valuable time writing for strangers?

Because shouting at strangers in the street doesn’t get the best response…On a serious note, after I finished secondary school I partook a media course at my local college and it sparked my love for writing. Who doesn’t like telling people about what they’re passionate about?

Any good memories formed here on Pure PlayStation? Or is it a hell ride you can’t escape from?

I’ve only been here for a few months, but my highlight was probably the first week I joined. Everyone was incredibly friendly and welcoming. The cherry on top was when I was introduced in Pure PlayStation Plays Week 195 – I really felt brought into the fold at that moment. That’s why I always look forward to Pure PlayStation Plays every week. However, everything has gone downhill with all the reference to Chris’ favourite band, The Killers… (Ed – I applaud you for putting that last sentence in this mini-interview. You’re always sticking it to The Man.)

Chris Harding

Who are you?

I’m “Da Baws”. Nobody calls me that… I’m just the guy who pays the server bills. I’m basically Daddy Day Care for a group of people on the internet. I love it.

What noise do people make when they want your attention?

Think of the worst swear words you can think of, then put two or more together and you’ll have what most people say to get my attention. Some even call me Chris.

Are you happy with that name? If you could swap names with a video game character, who would it be and why?

I’ve always been a bit “meh” with my name. If I could trade it for a video game character’s name, I’d be Sheriff Lonestar from the amazing Awesomenauts. Because who doesn’t want to be a gun-toting, tobacco-chewing cowboy? (Ed – Cancer patients? Idiot.)

What’s the very earliest game you can remember playing, and would you still play it today?

I think the first game I can remember was a very early Sonic the Hedgehog game on the Sega Master System. We were gifted it when I was a very small child, and I’d wake up early just to play it a bit before going to school. And yeah, of course I would play it today! Happy memories. (Ed – You’re a sad old man.)

We’re all Pure PlayStation here, but what other consoles do you play on, if any? No wrong answers. We’re all friends here.

I’m the resident scumbag here. I’ve got two Xbox One consoles. I’ve got the Xbox One X in the living room and then the Xbox One S in the bedroom. Then I’ve got the Nintendo Switch and PS3 set up in the living room, too, but they don’t see much use. I’ve got the PSVR headset and the Oculus Quest which doubles up as a Rift when connected to PC. My most recent acquisition is Google’s Stadia. Yeah, I know, you don’t really need to buy any hardware for it, but I’ve invested a few pennies into that ecosystem, so it counts and I don’t care what you say.

Nathan Drake – meandering murderer, or hero?

Straight up killer. That boy has a kill count to rival African warlords. Like, I was thinking about this very hard recently, and it’s just given me the idea for my next feature!

Kratos – sick killer or a loving father?

Does “whining lil bitch” count? I’ve not played much of the new game, but from the opening hour that I did play, Kratos seemed like a shadow of his former self. For me, it’s just another sad Dad story, baiting reviewers for Game of the Year awards. No bite from me.

Sly Cooper – Thieving little rat or loveable rogue?

Thieving little rat. If it’s not yours, don’t take it! I’ve got a thing about thieves…

If you could only take two games to a desert island, what would they be?

Championship Manager 03/04. Why this old version? After around 2007, I stopped caring about football and didn’t bother to follow the latest transfers and what not. Champ Manager 03/04 is the last game I got really stuck into, so I remember the classic players and I generally have a good time playing it. Plus, there’s no end! You can play hundreds of in-game years and you won’t hit a “Game Over” screen.

The second game would be Awesomenauts because the online is timeless. I hope this desert island has decent internet… (Ed – It doesn’t, you’re screwed.)

Single-player or multiplayer?

Single-player mostly, but I’m down for multiplayer with the right folks. (Ed – The question was “or” not “would you like to cheat the question and not answer it properly.”)

Online or local couch multiplayer?

Both! (Ed – What did you not understand about my previous comment?) (Ed – I understood it, but I’m also the editor, so this is a strange paradox for… us? Me? We? This is ridiculous. No more Mr Ed.)

Why do you write about games? What spurs you to sit at your desk and spend valuable time writing for strangers?

Hmm. I started out almost 9 years ago in a hotel room in France. I was reading a news piece from Eurogamer or some other website, and I thought to myself “this is boring to read.” And so that night I set up my first gaming news website, pissed out of my skull on cheap French wine. It was crap, but I enjoyed it and it kept me busy.

These days, I don’t really know. I consider it my job away from work. I work my regular job during the day, and then I come home and work this job. I like working and being active, and as gaming is a subject I know a lot about, why not? Plus, I have the fear that I’ll one day age out of gaming and will take up a crap hobby like gardening or reading or walking. No, this way I’m constantly barraged with the latest gaming news, courtesy of our PR contacts.

Any good memories formed here on Pure PlayStation? Or is it a hell ride you can’t escape from?

It’s been four years of good times, mostly. People come and people go in any job, and even more so in this line of work. I’m proud that we’ve managed to remain a consistent team with very few people leaving. We all have fun, we talk a lot of shit, and I get to try my hand at being a comedian to a group of people who will always laugh because if they don’t, they can kiss them sweet free game review codes goodbye.

I hope that in another four years we’re all still knocking around, a little older, chubbier, and with fresh consoles under our TVs.

(Mr Ed – Ha ha! I’m back, you little slags! Thought you could get rid of me that easily?)

OK, enough fun. I hope this has been at least a little bit enjoyable for you. If you got a couple of giggles out of it, the team and I will consider this a success. If not, well, you’re only Human. Stick around long enough and maybe I can Change Your Mind, but if not, Goodnight, Travel Well, Mr Brightside.

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