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#4261 Burger Warrior

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Posted 23 September 2017 - 02:53 AM

I'm on my phone and it's late so I would just like to add after you get to a certain point in Divinity II you do get the option to make more custom characters to join your party. Granted, you have to get through a whole chapter of the game first, but the option is there without mods intervening.

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#4262 Saber-Scorpion

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Posted 23 September 2017 - 08:42 AM

I'm on my phone and it's late so I would just like to add after you get to a certain point in Divinity II you do get the option to make more custom characters to join your party. Granted, you have to get through a whole chapter of the game first, but the option is there without mods intervening.

 

Really!? They did the Pillars of Eternity thing? Well that's the best news I've heard all week! :P Planning a second playthrough in my head already...

 

Also I finally did make it past that super hard fight. Granted, I had to go back and murderize two neutral guard NPCs for a few extra drops of XP, and then add some Summoning skillpoints to my mage and buy her some spells, and then do the Arena fight and just barely win because I managed to level up in the middle of the battle (saved by the bell - ding), and only then was I able to make it past... but I did! I guess as long as the difficulty doesn't get too frustrating it's better than it being too easy, as the battles in D:OS1 got later on...


-Scorp
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#4263 Burger Warrior

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Posted 23 September 2017 - 10:42 AM

Oh, also, with Lone Wolf characters a party member focused explicitly on Summoning is borderline OP. Their incarnate thing becomes a freakin tough-as-hell minotaur at summoning lvl 10 (so level five or lower with the Lome Wolf talent). And, later on, they can also get skills to summon other crazy things with suitably awesome powers (besides a certain feline met in Fort Joy).

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#4264 Ocelot

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Posted 02 October 2017 - 07:30 AM

It's been far too long since I posted about a Yakuza game, but it's kind of hard to keep writing about them when you've played all the games in the series that have been released in English, even the dumb zombie shooter spin-off. I've been absolutely smitten with this series ever since I got Yakuza 4 through Playstation Plus a couple of years ago, and playing every English-translated Yakuza game there is to completion simply wasn't enough. There was only one thing for it: play the Japanese ones!

 

So here I am in Yakuza 6, the hottest, newest, most beautiful game in the series, which isn't going to come out in English for another six months or so. And, to my surprise, I'm not doing too badly. My Japanese isn't great, but it's coming along, and so far I've found there's nothing better than playing games for improving my skills. I mean, I'm going to be playing them anyway, so why not turn those hours of video game time into hours of practice? It's not like I'm ever going to run out of Japanese games to play. Turns out, you get better at things pretty quickly when you do them for hours and hours.

 

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Yakuza 6 is built on an entirely new engine, and as such it is absolutely gorgeous. Look at that exquisite specimen of a man up there. Kazuma Kiryu, our hero, the ex-Yakuza with a heart of gold, is now 48 years old, and as usual is simply trying to enjoy his retirement from a life of organized crime. However, Yakuza 6 picks up directly from the ending of Yakuza 5, and as such Kiryu is almost immediately send to jail for five years for all the stunts he pulled at the end of that game. Meanwhile, Haruka, his adoptive daughter, has disappeared, filled with despair due to... well, some stuff that would take a while to get into. Long story short, Kiryu gets out of jail to find Haruka gone, and finding her will be your main objective in this here video game.

 

Our journey this time takes us out of our usual city in Tokyo to a small fishing town in Hiroshima, where everyone speaks with thick accents in a dialect that I really struggle with, but underneath their gruff exteriors they're really some tiptop people, and also they're all hiding TERRIBLE SEEECREEEETS! Yakuza games are soap operas with punching, after all, so all the best cliches are present. Everyone is hiding secrets at all times, mindblowing revelations are commonplace, Yakuza 3 had an evil twin and now Yakuza 6 has, DUN DUN DUNNNNN, a secret lovechild! Y'see, Haruka has been busy in the years she's been incommunicado; not only did she get mixed up with some bumpkin Yakuzas in Hiroshima, but she... well, she has a baby. I don't want to say it's actually her child yet, because she's been such a cartoonishly pure and innocent character in the series so far that I struggle to believe the writers would knock her up, but somehow she's ended up taking care of a baby boy named Haruto. And oh, by the way, now she's in a coma. Soap opera, remember?

 

So Kiryu, the tall, dashing, muscular man with a giant dragon tattooed on his back, must take matters into his own hands, unveil the secrets of Haruka's journey, and take care of a widdle baby, and you guys? You have not lived until you've heard Kazuma Kiryu cooing to a baby in his voice so deep it could rattle your fillings loose:

 

 

Have I mentioned that I love this series?

 

So I'm right in the meat of the game now, I think. I've got a lead on a guy who might be Haruto's father, and I've just fought a flamboyant member of the Korean Mafia, who's given me the location of this schmuck's hideout in exchange for a jolly good beating. It might just be that I have to concentrate harder than usual in order to understand the game in Japanese, but this story has me enthralled. I'm feeling those feelings you feel when you can't wait to see how the story goes, but you also love all the side content so much that you never want the game to end. This game is really good.

 

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#4265 Saber-Scorpion

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Posted 13 October 2017 - 12:54 PM

So I'm finally about to finish the first Divinity: Original Sin. Still can't say much for the story. Anyone remember that old Cliché Epic Story Formula page I used to have?

 

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"Long ago, the Big Badguy was defeated by the Greatest Hero(es)...

Now, 100000000000 years later, the Big Bad has returned!

Only the Chosen One(s) (that's you) can gather the Ancient Things and defeat him once again!

You are the greatest heroes alive... no, the greatest heroes who have EVER lived... NO! The greatest heroes who EVER WILL LIVE!"

 

Apparently even the guys who come along in the next 100000000000 years won't be as awesome as me. Sucks to be those guys.  :smug:

Uuuugggghhhhhh. Larian, why must you torture me so.


-Scorp
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#4266 Spark

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Posted 14 October 2017 - 04:59 PM

Due to a blunder, Life is Strange: Before the Storm - Episode 2 is already out on XBL. This being me, naturally, I've already devoured the thing. And can't say a thing except if I had my suspicions that this game is better than the original LiS, Episode 2 confirmed it. Before the Storm is a serious contender here.

 

This is going to be a much lesser world when these characters leave for the last time. Also the OST for BTS is awesome. It's becoming a really hard year to determine which game brought the best music to the table.

 

This one in particular gives me flashbacks to the ending of TTG's Walking Dead 1

 

 


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#4267 Ocelot

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Posted 15 October 2017 - 04:04 AM

Alright, Yakuza 6 is in the bag, baby! I wrapped it up after about 40 hours, dipping a toe into everything the game had to offer but not getting anywhere near 100% completion. These games can be massive timesinks if you really want to tick off every checkbox, but I just ain't about that life these days. Besides, I still have two more Yakuza games to play this year alone, and then there's the Fist of the Northstar crossover game next year, and then there are still two more Japan-only samurai-era games in the series I still have to play that are apparently full of archaic Japanese that might as well be Greek to me at my current level of Japanese proficiency :P

 

OK, so let's back up a bit. When we last left Yakuza 6, we were on the trail of the guy who knocked up our daughter and left her to get hit by a car and embroiled in a massive turf war between the Tokyo Yakuza, the Chinese Mafia, the opportunistic remains of a ruthless Korean crime syndicate, a small but mysteriously powerful Hiroshima Yakuza family, and, weirdly enough, a shipbuilding corporation that seemed to own half the property in the small town we'd settled down in. I absolutely adore these games, but one thing I would recommend is that you not come on board looking for a simple story. Yakuza games are long, complex affairs, with large casts of characters all with their own murky motivations. You don't quite need a flowchart to keep up but, well, it wouldn't hurt. Actually, you probably do need a flowchart for Yakuza 5. And... you might need one for Yakuza 6, too. Honestly, by the time they pulled in the hundred-year-old politician who'd been pulling strings from his deathbed I think I might have gone a little bit cross-eyed.

 

I should probably have seen it coming that the fellow I thought might have been my daughter's baby daddy wasn't actually the guy, because that little story thread popped up much too early in the proceedings. Shortly after I arrived back in Tokyo on his trail, I ended up a captive audience to an excruciatingly long monologue introducing the concept of 'Heihaizi', children born in China outside the One Child Policy, who can't be entered on the country's population registration system and as such can't go to school or get any kind of healthcare or... y'know, live like normal people. Because the world is terrible. Anyway, the aforementioned Chinese Mafia have struck a deal with the also aforementioned Hiroshima Yakuza to smuggle these kids over into Japan, set them up with Japanese families and forge citizenship papers for them. The head of the Hiroshima Yakuza is also the head of a huge Japanese shipbuilding conglomerate, and it's on his ships that the Chinese kiddos come over to Japan. The catch is, of course, that the Chinese kiddos are raise as sleeper agents, ready to do a cheeky bit of espionage on the Japanese when the need arises.

 

And, needless to say, this leads to a lovely period of our story during which some of our friends are revealed to have been SECRET CHINESE AGENTS THE WHOLE TIME, OH NOOOOO! I enjoyed this part a lot, because I love a good shocking plot reveal in my Yakuza games.

 

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Unfortunately, the plot twists kept coming and coming for hours and hours afterwards, and even my voracious appetite had been sated well before the end. I was a little bit exhausted by the time the credits rolled, and I'm not a huge fan of the way the game ended. I won't spoil it, because this game is still almost six months away from being released in English and I don't want anyone accidentally ruining it for themselves, but what I will spoil is the most ridiculous of all the plot twists, because I NEED TO TALK ABOUT THIS.

 

OK, are you with me? This is maybe the most preposterous thing I've ever seen in a video game. A plot twist so far out of left field you'd think the fielder had thrown it from the next baseball field over. IT IS 100% BONKS and you guys need to know all about it. So, if you plan to play Yakuza 6 one day, maybe don't read this, but if your only interest in Yakuza games is reading me waffle about them then DEFINITELY READ THIS BECAUSE IT'S SO GOOD!

 

Spoiler

 

There are still a few plot twists to come before that one and the ending, but honestly the game never outdoes that moment. And, the ending... isn't all that strong. I likes me some Yakuza, but every now and then it feels like the writers just let the story get away from them towards the ending. You know you're always going to finish the game by fighting a muscular dude with a big tattoo on his back, but Yakuza 6 keeps you guessing until the last couple of hours and when it's finally revealed who's going to be doing the punching it's a real anticlimax. The best Yakuzas (i.e. 2 and 0) set up really strong antagonists in the early hours of the game, and while I don't think you have to have a perfect foil for the protagonist to write a good story, it does really help. Particularly in a story where you're trying to say goodbye to a longtime fan favourite character. Yakuza 6's story isn't one of the better ones in the series.

 

But, hey, these Yakuza games all have a few problems, and I still loved 6 overall. It has amazingly strong characters and writing, probably the best cast of bros in the series to date, and I was more invested in the early chapters of the story than I think I'd ever been before. The side stuff is wonderful, too, with the best sidequests in the series and some really fun minigames. It's such a pretty game, too, and while the drop back to 30FPS puts a big ol' damper on the combat, it's still plenty of fun to punch thousands of dudes into submission and there were some absolutely fantastic bossfights. Were I the sort of feller who ranked things, I'd be tempted to declare my official Yakuza rankings to be:

 

2 > 0 > 4 > 6 > 3 > 5 > 1 > Dead Souls

 

In conclusion:

 

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#4268 Goldy

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Posted 22 October 2017 - 08:31 AM

I've been playing a lot of Battlefield 1 lately - I don't think it's the best game in the series but it is one of my favourites due to the WW1 era. They had a sale for their season pass - £20 for four bits of DLC (or £5 per product) thus giving me access to the two bits already released. Much more reasonable than the £40 they were asking for at launch and proves that all you need to do is wait.

 

I have been eagerly scooping up all news for Battlefront 2 as each piece suggested a marked improvement from the shambles that was Battlefront. - I have always enjoyed battlefront as a third person alternative to battlefield set in the star wars universe. However I didn't enjoy the demo of the last title as it felt way too much like a watered down Battlefield. Unfortunately I didn't get time to download the beta this time and so have questions for anyone who has played it:

  • What is the third person mode like?
  • Does the game set itself apart from Battlefield 1 or is it much the same with a star wars skin?
  • In the old battlefronts the multiplayer pitched players against each other in larger teams of bots. Is this case in Battlefront 2 or is it purely player only? 
  • Does the game's single player mode actually include an 'instant action' mode?

I have debated the controversial inclusion of loot boxes to the game and concluded that I will be able to ignore their offensiveness depending on the answers to the above.

 

 

 



#4269 Burger Warrior

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Posted 22 October 2017 - 01:50 PM

  • What is the third person mode like?
  • Does the game set itself apart from Battlefield 1 or is it much the same with a star wars skin?
  • In the old battlefronts the multiplayer pitched players against each other in larger teams of bots. Is this case in Battlefront 2 or is it purely player only? 
  • Does the game's single player mode actually include an 'instant action' mode?

I have debated the controversial inclusion of loot boxes to the game and concluded that I will be able to ignore their offensiveness depending on the answers to the above.

 

 

 

 

-I don't know, as I prefer first person mode. However, playing special classes/heroes/using certain abilities does press you into third person, which I personally didn't like because, as mentioned, I just prefer the first person view in my Battlefronts. It didn't seem like a particularly bad experience, though.

 

-Well, Battlefield 1 has more vehicles, vehicles just lying around, no space combat, no classes you unlock with score you gain in-match, squads, and basically only revolves around capturing points. Also it has Behemoths. Battlefront 2, meanwhile, has vehicles set as rewards if you gain a number of points (from doing objectives as well as getting kills), no controllable vehicles lying around, pretty great space combat, classes you unlock with a certain number of points, no squads (or the Partner system from the previous game), and has some pretty great objective variety (i.e. the beta showcased defending the Palace in Theed, on Naboo, which involved trying to take down an AAT with specialized missile launchers in the rough middle of the map and then defending the palace itself when that [usually] failed, with the droids getting less spawns the more the AAT was damaged. A smaller scale mode was essentially one-way capture-the-flag, and the space battle showcased involved a series of objectives to weaken a space dock and ultimately destroy a Star Destroyer in the process of being repaired).

 

Soooo... while base gameplay may be similar (granted, with far less emphasis on charging into melee combat; that's a big thing), the overall flow of gameplay in Battlefront 2 was far different from Battlefield 1.

 

-In space battles there are a large number of bots in play; most of my kills came from those, if I'm honest. However, on the ground it's only players versus players; it seems like there'll be an arcade mode where you can play with one other person to fight bots, though*.

 

*that information is taken from trailers, not really from in-game poking around.

 

-Do not know; singleplayer wasn't really unlocked during the beta.

 

-----

 

Overall, I will say the lootboxes didn't seem to affect things too much, especially on the ground battle side. However, their effect is definitely more poignant in space battles, with starship health and basic attack ability being directly enhanced by cards in the beta. I can't say I felt those differences much in my own gameplay, but I also did only, like... three space battles, without really putting my own cards to use. I did have a blast, though, when I didn't run into the usual connection issues one can expect from these public beta events.

 

Hope this helps!

 

EDIT: This guy plays in third person pretty much exclusively. However, there's also lots of foul language and those derned memes in there so you've been warned:


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#4270 Spark

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Posted 26 October 2017 - 11:16 PM

Here's my complete, in depth review of Super Mario Odyssey

 

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#4271 Dalton Westmoore

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Posted 27 October 2017 - 08:09 AM

 

"Long ago, the Big Badguy was defeated by the Greatest Hero(es)...

Now, 100000000000 years later, the Big Bad has returned!

Only the Chosen One(s) (that's you) can gather the Ancient Things and defeat him once again!

You are the greatest heroes alive... no, the greatest heroes who have EVER lived... NO! The greatest heroes who EVER WILL LIVE!"

 

Apparently even the guys who come along in the next 100000000000 years won't be as awesome as me. Sucks to be those guys.  :smug:

 

 

I swear, if SSLF wasn't almost completely dead due to everyone jumping ship from the Paywall, this would have more likes than it currently does as of writing this post.

 

By the way, I'm currently saving money to build a gaming pc. Anyone have some recommendations for games once I have it?

 

This is the current lineup:

 

  • PUBG
  • Battlefront 2
  • Battlefield 1
  • Some sort of RPG maker game
  • Minecraft 


#4272 Saber-Scorpion

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Posted 28 October 2017 - 01:36 PM

YO, I know what you guys are all thinking right now: Boy, I hope Scorp posts some more crap about Hearthstone!

 

Well, here you go then. This is my current favorite deck, the Taunt Quest Warrior:

 

Spoiler

 

Now, this deck is gonna be pretty impossible to make unless you're willing to spend real money, or else you've just been free-2-play'ing FOREVER, like I have. But all you really need to get started is Fire Plume's Heart, which is the Warrior Quest. I think it costs 1600 dust to craft. After that, you should be able to climb through the low ranks using whatever taunt minions you have in your collection, though you'll want to craft a Brawl or 2 as soon as possible. The Fire Plume quest always appears in your starting hand, and you play it on your first turn. Then, after you've summoned 7 minions with Taunt, you'll get Sulfuras (the hammer of Ragnaros), a 4/2 weapon that changes your hero power to "Deal 8 Damage to a Random Enemy" for the rest of the game.

 

The thing I like best about this deck is its simplicity. Not too much of that "thinking" crap for you, no sir. Just keep laying down those big, fat Taunt minions until you finish that quest, equip Sulfuras, and then your goal for the rest of the game simply becomes: clear the board as much as you can on each turn, and then always use your hero power. Eventually you will kill them.

 

Since ALL of your minions taunt, this is very good against Aggro decks, and since you have plenty of board-clear cards, it's good against Control decks too. The only Aggro deck that gives it trouble is Hunter, who is very strong right now. The way you can try to get around the pure face-damage of the Hunter is to mulligan your quest at the start of the game. Yes, you read that right - just toss it aside. That gives you at least 1 extra card to hopefully control the board long enough to wear the hunter down. Because once a hunter's wasted most of his cards smashing up against your Taunts, he'll be running on empty and just quit. As long as you can hold out, you'll never need Sulfuras from the quest, so don't even try for it.

 

There are still some decks that cause trouble. First are Mages, who can freeze your minions, deal direct damage to your face with spells (ignoring your taunts), and stay alive using Ice Block and Armor. Luckily Mage is not in the meta right now, so you won't meet many. The trick against mages is to hit their face as hard as you can, as fast as you can. Same with Priests, because one of the top decks in the meta right now is "Highlander Priest" (so called because "There can be only one!" of each card in their deck), and once the Highlander priest has everything set up to their advantage (having played Raza the Chained and Shadowreaper Anduin), it's almost impossible to stop their onslaught. You might consider running Dirty Rat to try to draw out Highlander Priest's Raza without triggering its Battlecry effect (which breaks the priest's entire game plan), but that's kinda risky, and I don't have Dirty Rat, so I haven't tried it.

 

Man, I hate Priest players...

 

Anyway, otherwise, just remember not to waste your board-clear cards (Brawl and Sleep with the Fishes) until you absolutely have to use them, and use your "damage all minions" cards (Ravaging Ghoul, Blood Razor, & Primordial Drake) to draw more cards with Acolyte & Battle Rage, and to armor up with Armorsmith, and to clear the board via Sleep with the Fishes, and of course to Execute big threats. It's all about saving, controlling, and enduring until you get Sulfuras, and then go all-out on attack.

 

Of course I've only ever gotten to Rank 10 in Ranked Standard, so what the heck do I know about it? Anyway, that's all. Enjoy. :P


-Scorp
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#4273 Ocelot

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Posted 28 October 2017 - 09:26 PM

So after swearing off the Assassin's Creed series in the wake of Unity, a game Ubisoft released for full price that ran at 17FPS on the PS4, they've pulled me back in. Or, well, their pricing model has pulled me back in, at least. I wasn't super interested, but I saw Assassin's Creed Origins for $64 Australian Dollarydoos on day one, which is like... less than $50 US, I think? I mean, I could just not have bought it, but... well, I did, so here we are.

 

I like it, though. To the extent that one can draw comparisons between entries in a series that is basically the same game over and over again, I think this is one of the better ones. Egypt in the Greek crossover period (48 BC, to be exact) is a pretty cool time period for an AC game; it's far earlier than any of the mainline games so far, but Egyptian history goes back so far that even the characters in the game think of, say, the Pyramids as being ancient. The story is your standard AC fair, with your grizzled assassin having to hunt down a group of shadowy figures pulling strings, and while there aren't really any standout characters I do quite enjoy the relationship between Bayek (your dude) and Aya (his wife). They're both cool fight-y stab-y people, and they have an unusually well-written relationship for a video game couple. They're just comfortable with eachother in a way I feel we don't see very often. We even get to play as Aya, too, as she captains a ship in the Aegean sea and gets into the Black-Flag-style sea battles. This being a Ubisoft game I'm of course ready for her to be killed off pointlessly in the final act, but I honestly feel like that might not happen this time.

 

The big difference this time around is that we RPG now, son. But, what exactly does it mean to be an RPG in this day and age? It has main quests and side quests, of course, but what modern game doesn't? There's XP, levels and perks to buy, but, again, every game has that these days. No, what sets Assassin's Creed Origins apart from the crowd is deep and meaningful choice and conseq- hah, no, there's none of that. No, what actually sets AC Origins apart is... that it's really restrictive in an irritating way. Every quest comes with a recommended level, and if you're more than two levels below that you basically can't do it. Enemies more than two levels above you can't be stealth-killed or air-assassinated, which is a huge pain. You can do some decent damage to them, but you can't take them out in one hit no matter how hard you stab them in the neck.

 

It isn't necessarily a huge deal to keep up with the required levels, but it does mean that a straight story-missions-only playthrough is pretty much impossible. You need to get some sidequests in there to keep the XP flowing, but Witcher 3 this ain't. The writing alone isn't strong enough to keep sidequesting interesting, and this is an Assassin's Creed game so the gameplay is always going to be the same stealth-y-fight-y stuff. Every mission is the same thing, and it gets a little boring after a while. They've tried to spice up the usual formula with some MGSV-inspired features (your iDroid is a hawk named Senu that you can control and use to mark targets), but even that is just another opportunity to become even more repetitive, because you have to do the bird-enemy-marking thing every time.

 

To be fair, they've overhauled the controls for Origins, and it plays pretty well, for a change. Gone is the "Hold the R2 button all the time" control scheme of old. Now you walk, jog and run simply by pushing the analogue stick further. You climb up things by pressing (or holding) X, and go down with Circle. It's something I've been wanting them to do for a decade now, and it works really well. There are still those moments when your dude just won't move and you want to scream, but at least my fingers don't cramp from holding three buttons at once to do anything. Combat has Dark Souls controls, with R1 for light attack, R2 for heavy, L1 to block and a face button dodge. You've got a bunch of different weapon types, but there's no magic Counter button like old ACs so you actually have to fight guys manually for a change. You can shoot guys with your bow at any time with L2 and R2. It controls like a good video game, y'know? It's not as responsive as something like Horizon Zero Dawn, but it's perfectly competent. Unlike other AC games, when I screw up I feel like it's my fault, rather than the bad controls.

 

So I think I'm getting towards the end of the game now, at least the main story. I've killed most of the guys on my list of guys to kill, but I guess I have to grind some side quests to get my level up before I go on further. I don't plan on getting obsessed with this game and going for 100% like I used to do, and it's a good thing too because this game seems absolutely enormous. I don't think I've even visited a third of the areas on the map yet. This is probably a game you could spend 100 hours with if you really wanted to, but I ain't about that life any more. I want to see the good stuff and get out while I'm still young :P

 

EDIT - OK, finished AC Origins, did a lap of Egypt to see all the sights and clear up a few Trophies, and I have to say I'm really surprised at how much I liked it overall. It's still an Assassin's Creed game, but they've added so many new quality of life features and really nailed the basics this time around. I still don't really think they did the RPG part very well, but it doesn't spoil the game or anything. It's probably not my favourite in the series, since it was always the modern day mystery that really did it for me and Ubisoft hasn't done anything with that since 3, but nostalgia aside I think Origins is probably the best Assassin's Creed game there is.

 

And with that I moved on to Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus, which I also quite like. I didn't play the first game, but this story isn't exactly rocket surgery so I think I'll be OK. I just hit one of the most incredible plot developments I've ever seen in a video game, so I'm feeling pretty good about it right now. The tone is kind of all over the place, from super serious drama to wacky smelly poo comedy, which I don't think they're really nailing, and I had some real problems in the early levels with working out where I was supposed to go, but I'm cruising along nicely now. There's a button that makes you dual-wield any gun, and once I found that I decided that was how I was going to play the entire game from then on; it's working out pretty well for me.

 

EDIT AGAIN - Wolfenstein was so good! Why didn't anyone tell me these games were like this? The story was absolutely nuts, the writing and voice acting were wonderful, the gameplay wasn't as Doom-esque as I'd hoped but was still amazingly fun in its own unique way. Was Wolfenstein The New Order like this? I know people liked it, but I always got the impression it was a little more grounded than The New Colossus ended up being. But if it's anything like as crazy as TNC, I'm going to have to play it.

 

OK, I'm going to spoil everything about The New Colossus here, because this is a game that needs to be talked about. As always, if you're going to play it then stay away, but if you aren't then DEFINITELY READ THIS!

 

Spoiler



#4274 Ocelot

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Posted 07 November 2017 - 09:01 AM

I played that there Call of Duty: World War 2, for some reason. ...I don't know, you guys. I mean, I've enjoyed Calls of Duty in the past. I liked Infinite Warfare quite a bit, and, whatevs, I suppose this one was fine. Call of Duties are fun to play, y'know? You shoot a million guys, you follow the bloke with the big, glowing 'FOLLOW' marker on his back; it's a fun, mindless four hours or so, and then you're done. I can almost feel this game leaking out between my ears as I type this.

 

So it starts in Normandy, of course. They have the decency not to copy Saving Private Ryan exactly, but there is still an 'everything goes silent as your ears ring from an explosion' moment. Everyone is facial-captured and portrayed by a real actor, and there were a lot of dudes I feel like I've seen before but the only one I definitely recognised was Josh Duhamel, and I feel like if he's your headliner you're probably not doing that well. Gone are the days of Gary Oldman being in these games, I think. Josh Duhamel is the hardass Sergeant who gets all his men killed in needlessly risky manoeuvres, but it's OK because he has bad memories from an older battle where he tried to save his men but just got a lot more killed in the process. I don't really get why that makes sense but... well, that's all you've got in this game. You shoot a thousand guys and you deal with Josh Duhamel being a real jerk all the time.

 

There's a cool level where you play as a French Resistance member infiltrating a Nazi base, and you have to act natural in a stolen Nazi uniform while looking for your contact. The game pretends it's going to test you by making you memorise the details on your phony papers when the Nazi officers question you, but it only actually does this twice and the second time is just for funsies because the Nazi in question already knows you're a fake. Then you go back to shooting guys more or less immediately anyway. There's a bit where you drive a tank around, which was pretty neat, and then another bit where you fly a Razorback P-47, which was terrible. For some unfathomable reason they decided to make you use the right stick for pitch and the left stick for banking, and it's absolutely awful. Why wouldn't it just control like a plane? Why would you do that?

 

Overall, the WW2 weapons just aren't fun to shoot guys with, and there's too much 'defend this position' when what you really want to be doing in a COD is pushing forward through a bajillion dudes. We left WW2 FPSes in the early PS360 era for a reason; I'll take near-future/sci-fi stuff any day of the week. Oh, and I guess there's a multiplayer and a zombie mode, but meh I don't want to play those.

 

What I do want to play is a little game by the name of Super Mario Odyssey, which is the most delightful thing. I've finished the main game, and I'm going back through all the worlds now finding all the new stuff that's been scattered throughout them for the post-game. Something's going to happen with I collect 500 Power Moons, and I have 405 so far. WHAT COULD IT BE!?

 

This is the best Mario game, you guys. We had to wait a while, but Nintendo finally got all the permutations right: big open levels that encourage exploration, loads of hidden goodies (including more linear, self-contained challenges), normal controls for a normal controller, more fun and rewarding platforming abilities than ever, and a new gimmick that's really fun to use: you throw your hat at things and then you become the things. Goomba Mario, Fish Mario, Tank Mario, T-Rex Mario. At one point I turned into a big slab of uncooked meat and just sort of wiggled around; it was great!

 

The game is absolutely packed with whimsical, joyous stuff to do, from helping nice people to jumping and climbing and feeling that giddy little thrill of knowing you've reached some area you weren't supposed to see, or getting yourself somewhere you were supposed to go but by a different method. I don't know if you can play the whole game without turning into different creatures, but there are a whole lot of platforming challenges that can be done without transforming and it feels awesome when you pull it off. I even loved the bossfights, which I've always found fairly hit or miss. It's always the Mario formula of "Do this thing three times", but they ramp up the challenge nicely and the things you do are usually a lot of fun. The fights against Bowser have this OOMPH to them that make them feel like they could have been designed by Platinum, and that's the highest praise I can offer.

 

The only complaint I have is something that is, unfortunately, so Nintendo it hurts. The game doesn't use every button on the controller, instead choosing to double up every move you have; ZL and ZR do the same thing, L and R do the same thing, X and Y do the same thing, A and B do the same thing, and the D-pad and L3 and R3 go entirely unused. Yet, for some reason, Nintendo has mapped a lot of moves in the game to waggle, with no option to change it. To throw your Cap around in a circle you have to waggle the controller side to side, and you flick it up or down to throw in that direction. To climb faster, roll faster or zap through an electric line faster you can hammer the Y button, but waggling your controller will make you go even faster than that. It's so irritating because it just doesn't need to be that way, but Nintendo is such a stick in the mud with this kind of thing. They want you to play the way they want you to play, whether it feels good or not. It doesn't ruin the game or anything, but it lead me to just not using those moves because it's a real pain to shake the Pro Controller around all the time.

 

I still remember seeing that Switch reveal event and being convinced that Nintendo was absolutely clueless and they'd screwed it up right out of the gate. I don't think I could have been more wrong.



#4275 Spark

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Posted 07 November 2017 - 01:44 PM

The New Order was absolutely like The New Colossus, really the only difference in huge gameplay factors was the lack of the 'contraptions' from the back half, and being able to pick and choose dual-wielding. You wanted to dual wield, you're using 2 of the same gun.

 

Since I've probably gotten around to every new thing I'm gonna play this year, I've got a preliminary list of stuff I'm eventually gonna have to put numbers in front of.

 

-Prey

-Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus

-Super Mario Odyssey

-Life is Strange: Before the Storm

-Destiny 2

-Resident Evil VII

-Horizon Zero Dawn

 

Breath of the Wild was....ok. Mario Odyssey just blows it out of the water.


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#4276 Lord_Capulet

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Posted 10 November 2017 - 09:18 AM

My clanmates convinced me to jump into Path of Exile, a free-to-play top-down RPG, and I'm glad they did, because I'm enjoying it more than is probably healthy.  Instead of being the chosen one whom people just give stuff to because you're destined to kill blah-blah badguy, as is the norm, it builds off a similar foundation to the more recent Elder Scrolls games where you start as a prisoner.  The difference that stood out there was that every NPC you react with doesn't conveniently forget your crimes just because you left the tutorial area.  Each character class has different reasons for being exiled to the magically-scarred wasteland that is the continent of Wraeclast, from the pious Templar who asked too many questions about his order's past to the charming Duelist who won a duel of honor against the wrong person; from the enigmatic Witch who was caught tampering with powers unsanctioned by the church to the wondrous Scion who literally murdered her husband on their wedding night.  Your character's voice lines and their relationships with the NPCs reflect these backgrounds, as some characters even witnessed your crimes, or at least know you by reputation or saw your life begin to decline.

 

This game has been called "everything Diablo III tried to be."  Having never played any Diablo, I can only speculate as to the meaning of that statement.  What I can say is that this game has a compelling, truly dark narrative that made me even more industrious than usual in finding pieces of lore as I sought to figure out what the bloody heck happened to this entire continent.  Without giving too much away, you find that you are sifting through the wreckage of a once-great empire that relied on tyranny and magic more than was good for it, and hear the stories of numerous heroes who tried (and apparently failed) to cancel the apocalypse.  Will you falter beneath the weight of your own sins and follow those heroes into the grave (or worse), or rise above the endless hordes of zombies, magical mutants, malformed beasts, and corrupt soldiers (among other dangers) to not just survive, but thrive?

 

Be warned, the levelling system is very different from what you may be used to, as while all classes focus on certain types of gear and attributes, spells and abilities are, for the most part, COMPLETELY INTERCHANGEABLE.  Want your Duelist to toss fireballs like a mage? Sure!  Want your Witch to loose special arrows from a bow?  Why not?  While not every weapon or skill is perfectly suitable for every character, you can still level your passive stats to match your desired build, and the actual blade swings/spells/teleports/etc. you want to happen when you click are up to you, and upgrade independently from your character.  It gets a bit overwhelming at first, so be sure to go to the main website to pick a character you think best matches your playstyle, then go to the forum to see recommended builds for that character, so you can work from there.  Everything from skills to gear is included in the best articles, as the community is surprisingly helpful in showing new players what works for them and is fun/less confusing to play.

 

---

 

On the single player front, I finally dipped my foot into the endless ocean that is the Witcher series.  Yep, only ten-ish years late!  I'd been interested ever since Scorp first released that one vignette and spoke so glowingly about the series, but I only recently managed to acquire a copy on Steam and the time to play it, as opposed to other games.  Needless to say, I'm glad I did.

 

Being a stickler for order and proper narrative, I started from the very, very beginning with the Witcher: Enhanced Edition (okay, so not the very beginning), and was immediately intrigued with the amnesia mechanic/narrative I'd heard so much about.  Finally, we have an excuse for all the exposition, and our character having to ask about basic concepts that the NPCs learned long ago.  While the animations don't seem to have aged particularly well (is it REALLY necessary to load into a cutscene of Geralt showing a signet ring we can't even see?), I'm powering through it and the need to get obscure journal entries before you can complete quests because darnit, I want to see what happens next!  All these people who remember Geralt, who even saw him die, and some evil he was fleeing that could end the world according to prophecy?  With characters who act and sound so alive, a world full of lore and politics that I can't get enough of, and story choices that actually feel significant but aren't always strictly black-and-white?  I'm hooked.  I'm running around the temple quarter of Vizima in Act 2 like a chicken with its head cut off, and I couldn't be happier!

 

(That being said, I'll be looking back for Scorp's and Maverick's old reviews of the Witcher games to see if any advice can be found, and I will happily welcome any tips from veteran Witchers in our ranks.)


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#4277 Saber-Scorpion

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Posted 10 November 2017 - 11:01 AM

I hear your cries, people of SSLF. I hear what you truly want. "Scorp!" you shout, "Scorp! It has been too long!" And who am I to deny you? Yes, it is that time again. It's time for...
 
Another post about a card game no one else plays!
 
This time it's Gwent. Last time I showed you my Hearthstone Magni deck, all about being tough with Taunt cards. This time I will continue the theme of tough-ass dwarves with my Dwarven Endurance deck for the Scoia'tael faction in Gwent:

 

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The card list is:

Spoiler

 

Mulligan:

Try to get as many Dwarven Agitators in your hand as possible. Make sure you DO NOT have all 3 Mahakam Defenders in hand, or else the Agitator will have nothing to copy from your deck! The whole reason we only have 2 types of bronze dwarf cards in our deck is to ensure the Agitator ALWAYS spawns a Defender. I usually keep 1 Defender in hand at most. Mulligan the rest.

Mulligan any Elven Wardancers, since they are played immediately when mulliganed. That is their only purpose.

Try to draw Saskia if you can.

 

Round 1 Moves:

If you drew her, play Saskia to mulligan any leftover Elven Wardancers or extra Mahakam Defenders, and draw any Dwarven Agitators you have left in your deck. Another good card to draw with Saskia is the Vrihedd Dragoon.

Play the Vrihedd Dragoon as soon as possible, so he can buff your hand throughout the round. If the enemy Locks or destroys him, fine. That's one reason we play him first: so that the enemy uses their lock/damage attacks on the Dragoon instead of our more important cards, like Yarpen Zigrin.

 

Yarpen Zigrin usually comes next. If you did not draw him, do so now using your Leader card. Play Yarpen and hope that the enemy doesn't destroy or lock him. He has Resilience (meaning he will remain on the board for the next round) and grows more powerful with each dwarf played. He's our most powerful card, but we can still win without him.

 

Next, play all your Dwarven Agitators to summon copies of Mahakam Defenders. Once they are all on the board, play Dennis Cranmer. The reason you play him AFTER the Agitators is so he will buff the Defender copies they created. If you don't have Dennis, use your leader to summon him.

 

If you have Sheldon Skaggs in hand, then play EVERYTHING you can into the Melee Lane. If the enemy drops some weather on that lane, clear it with First Light. If you can't, then play Sheldon on that lane in order to move everything else out. Otherwise, just play Skaggs right near the end so he gets maximum buff.

Zoltan Chivay can also be used to move your Defenders out of harm's way and buff them.

Use Iorveth and Cleaver to take down any threats the enemy puts on the board. (It might actually be worth running some more removal cards like Alzur's Thunder in place of, say, a First Light or Thunderbolt Potion.) And finally, use Decoy to restore any Locked units, or to draw more Defender copies with an Agitator, or to take out more threats with Cleaver.

 

Always hold onto Saesenthessis and play her last, since she is buffed by all dwarves & elves on the board. A great finishing move.

 

Strategy:

What makes this deck so fun is that we get to go ALL IN, ALL THE TIME! None of that "Should I bluff and pass?" thinking for you, no sir! Because your goal is to win the first round by any means necessary, and to fill the board with as many Resilient units as possible (Yarpen & the Defenders) and buff them as much as possible (using Thunderbolt Potion and Zoltan). All of these will carry over into the second round!

 

If you lose the first round, then you might be in trouble, because a smart foe will simply pass on the second round (since the board still will be covered in your Resilient dwarves), and then any Defenders still in your hand will be much less useful, since Resilience is no good on round 3. But don't give up! Hopefully you will have used up nearly all your bronze cards on round 1, leaving nothing but Silvers and Golds in your hand (like Saesenthessis), which might be enough to win round 3, since your enemy has probably used up all their stuff to win the first round. Basically it's all luck at that point.

 

Usually, you will win 2/0 and never have to pass! :D


-Scorp
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#4278 Lord_Capulet

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Posted 14 November 2017 - 07:25 AM

Oooh, I play Gwent!  My clanmates who also play the Witcher games either didn't play Gwent or complain the freestanding one is too different from the version they played in The Witcher III, so I've just been puttering around in the Single player challenges and holiday events.  I'll occasionally make a brave charge into casual play, but get only mixed results with my very basic Northen Realms - Foltest buff and armor deck.  I'm experimenting with a Nilfgaard deck, too, but haven't invested enough time or money to really get good at the game.  I'll gladly take a screenshot of my deck when I get home, though!  (and add you on GOG, too, if you'll allow me.)


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#4279 Saber-Scorpion

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Posted 14 November 2017 - 08:13 PM

'Course you can add me on GOG! Pretty sure you can guess my username.

 

BTW, you asked about The Witcher earlier, and I wanted to give you the same advice I give everyone regarding the first game: don't get bogged down in the Vizima swamp in Chapter 2. If you start to get really tired of running around in the mire killing drowners and bloedzuigers, just go ahead and finish that chapter and move on. It might not be worth doing every side-quest there, since it takes forever. But the rest of the game is fantastic. I still think TW1 rivals TW3 in terms of sheer atmosphere. And the ending is great. Pay attention for the twist. :P

 

I've already made a few modifications to my Dwarven Endurance deck in Gwent. I swapped out Iorveth for Ithlinne and switched both Thunderbolt Potions for Alzur's Thunders. The potions were weak, and I needed more removal. Nilfgaard players running Sweers still eat me for breakfast though. Once Sweers eats all your Defenders, game's over. :(

 

One thing I can say: of all the digital card games I've tried, Gwent gives BY FAR the most rewards. CDPR gives cards away like candy! Win 3 games for a new pack each day, which takes 2-3 days in Hearthstone, and playing Ranked just showers you in packs...


-Scorp
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#4280 Lord_Capulet

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 02:43 PM

Invite sent, with my compliments.

 

Heh, "don't get bogged down."  I wish you'd told me that before I went and got my boots soaked chasing a drowned dead for Siegried's tongue contract.  Preeettty sure I'm going to get trench foot.  XD  But in all seriousness, thank you!  I'm just doing the sidequests for the coin, since apparently quests in this game have required reading, but the textbooks , er, sorry tomes and such cost exorbitant amounts; but I need to get that information to be able to do the bigger, better jobs so I can have the money to buy the gear I want.  Wait....am I in college again?

 

 

Anywho, I promised a Gwent deck screenshot, so here it is, for your viewing, critiquing, or mocking pleasure.

 

https://i.imgur.com/7M4U2zu.png

 

 

I've probably overstuffed it, but I found that this arrangement allows me to win wars of attrition, particularly against some AI challenges and most players at my level...which is the very bottom... >.>  But it gives me plenty of troops for Foltest to buff, armor for my Dun Banner Cavalry to exploit or to otherwise keep my units in the fight, and plenty of lovely siege weapons that whittle the enemy down with satisfying "whoosh-thumps."  I'm working on getting more Temerian cards to capitalize off of the Blue Stripes' ability, they definitely pair well with the Temerian Infantry.  Those and the Blue Stripe Scouts seem to be the only cards with the same power, though.  Ah well, it's still handy to be able to drown the enemy in numbers like that. 

 


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