Jump to content


Photo

What Are You Currently Playing?


  • Please log in to reply
4319 replies to this topic

#4301 Ocelot

Ocelot

    #Reylo

  • Moderator
  • 7,762 posts

Posted 06 February 2018 - 04:59 AM

I know what you mean. Pro tip: Look under the "Allies and Relationships" section of your Journal and do the missions clearly marked "Loyalty Mission" (in orange text). They will eventually show up there as long as you talk to your crew on a fairly regular basis. They are the only side-quests worth playing, as far as I've seen. Most of the others are just lots and lots of running all over the damn place and shooting a metric ton of dudes.

 

Will do, Chief. I have that same compulsion to tick off every box on the checklist, but these days I'm trying to fight it. My general plan when I do get around to Andromeda is to stick to the good stuff and avoid spending a whole month perfecting every single planet, so I'm hoping I'm able to do that. I tried really hard to just mainline my way through Assassin's Creed Origins, for instance, but then Ubisoft went and made that game an RPG when we weren't looking and I had to end up grinding levels to get through it anyway.

 

(I should say I don't want to write off Andromeda before I even play it. There's still a chance I'll actually like the game, of course, and not just want to get it over with as quickly as possible :P)

 

So I finished Pikmin 3, which was a really nice game. I always feel a little sense of accomplishment when I push myself out of my video game comfort zone a little bit and see it through all the way to the end. Pikmin 3's final level turned out to be a SUPER DUPER STRESSFUL EXTENDED ESCORT MISSION, which is basically my worst nightmare, and I very strongly considered giving up immediately upon failing it miserably a couple of times. You have to split up into two teams, one of which will carry an injured astronaut man while the other pushes ahead, defeats enemies and solves the puzzles that will open passage further into the level. Oh, and there's a giant gelatinous blob monster chasing the injured dude the whole time that won't stop until it catches him, and when it does it'll take him all the way back to the start of the level and you'll have to do it all over again. I'm a terrible choker in those sorts of situations, and sure enough the pressure got to me and I failed miserably the first couple of times.

 

But I'd come so far and I wanted to finish the game, so I shamelessly went to Youtube for some tips and discovered I'd been playing the game like a huge chump this whole time. There's a mechanic that lets you mark a spot on the Gamepad's screen and have your characters automatically go there, which had never seen useful to me because I didn't know why I wouldn't just control them myself. Turns out, the trick is to split up your party and manually control one squad while having the computer guide the other one around, which splits the game wide open and lets you do multiple things at once. Basically I'm a big idiot who totally missed a huge part of how this game works for 90% of my playthrough.

 

At least I got there in the end, though. Once I understood that, keeping the horrible blob monster occupied was a simple matter of kiting it around a circular area of the level while I got down to business building bridges and completing circuits to open up the path through the dungeon. Easy as you like. Big ol' bossfight to finish things off, and there you go, I played a Pikmin and it was good. Another series of video games I can get excited about at E3s!

 

I moved on to a bit of NintendoLand, the shovelware minigame collection that came packaged with my Wii U when I bought it. Half the minigames are multiplayer only, and of the ones that are left there are a few that want you to play with Wiimotes, so it's hardly the best way of demonstrating the concept of the Wii U, but Nintendo did it anyway. I didn't have a Wiimote back when I got my Wii U, so I was limited to only a handful of pretty basic minigames that I had no desire to play ever again. I have a Wiimote this time, but there's still not much to write home about. The only game I think I'd ever want to play twice was this neat little Metroid third-person shooter where you run around dressed as Samus and blast stuff. It's nothing amazing, but it's a bit of fun.

 

NintendoLand perfectly exemplifies all the worst traits of this era of Nintendo. Lots of ideas but none that can carry a whole game, and this awful nagging attitude. It's always "LOOK AT THE GAMEPAD" or "LOOK AT THE TV". "HOLD THE GAMEPAD SIDEWAYS". "HOLD THE GAMEPAD VERTICALLY". But my wrists, thou- "I SAID VERTICALLY". Every game has slooooow tutorials that you can't just button through at your own pace, and it'll never miss an opportunity to tell you to make sure your Wiimote strap is tight around your wrist and that you should take a break every hour. There's always something mapped to waggle that would be so much more comfortable with a button, and heaven help you if you think you might be able to customise your controls. No, early-2010s Nintendo always knew best; it was their way or the highway. Who would've thunk it'd lead to their worst-selling console ever? Oh, everybody? Oh, right.

 

I tried to play a bit of New Super Mario Bros U, too, which I got free from some promotion Nintendo was running in the early days of the Wii U when they were panicking about it not selling, but I'm still just not a 2D Mario man. I'm better at them now than I used to be (no more pathetically running into bottomless pits without jumping, and I walk straight into Goombas much less often), but I just don't find them particularly enjoyable.

 

I think I'm going to do a run through The Wonderful 101 as a fare-thee-well to my Wii U before never touching this hunk of junk ever again.



#4302 Amator Bellum

Amator Bellum

    forgot about dre

  • Nova Member
  • 177 posts

Posted 07 February 2018 - 07:09 PM

I've been playing New Vegas again, while I should be doing homework. 



#4303 880_ZERO

880_ZERO

    I give lead enemas.

  • Nova Member
  • 9,450 posts

Posted 09 February 2018 - 02:11 AM

Come on guys, no one is playing Monster Hunter World??

 

also hi


Old timer

#4304 Goldy

Goldy

    Sergeant Major

  • Moderator
  • 3,088 posts

Posted 09 February 2018 - 04:56 AM

Nope, been playing BF1 and Subnautica lately.

 

Subnautica - this has been described as the game people wanted No Man's Sky to be. It is a survival game were you crash land on a gorgeous ocean world and have to survive. The best way to play/explore this game is completely blind but I did use a few guides near the end because there are essential upgrade items that are just unfairly difficult to find. 



#4305 Saber-Scorpion

Saber-Scorpion

    Pandinus imperator.

  • Webmaster
  • 7,833 posts

Posted 10 February 2018 - 04:15 PM

Come on guys, no one is playing Monster Hunter World??

 

also hi

 

Holy crap, ZERO! Long time no see.

 

Yeah, that's one I've been looking at. I've never played a Monster Hunter game in my life, but I enjoyed the heck out of Dragon's Dogma for a while, and since Monster Hunter World is a similar game on the same engine, I thought I'd give it a look... until I got to the part of the video where the guy pulled out the Gatling gun, and a girl with goggles on her head started bouncing around, and there was a little talking cat-person... Then I thought "this might be 2anime4me" and bailed. :P Might give it a try eventually, but I'd really prefer a Dragon's Dogma 2. :[


-Scorp
tinyicon_rss.pngtinyicon_facebook.pngtinyicon_twitter.pngtinyicon_flickr.pngtinyicon_mocpages.pngtinyicon_deviantart.pngtinyicon_tumblr.pngtinyicon_pinterest.pngtinyicon_instagram.png


#4306 Dalton Westmoore

Dalton Westmoore

    dO yOu bLeEd?

  • Nova Patron
  • 3,035 posts

Posted 10 February 2018 - 07:12 PM

Don't worry guys, we'll turn Scorp into a Weeaboo yet.



#4307 Ocelot

Ocelot

    #Reylo

  • Moderator
  • 7,762 posts

Posted 13 February 2018 - 06:05 AM

also hi

 

suh dude?

 

I thought really hard about trying Monster Hunter World, but even hearing about how much more beginner-friendly they've made it, I still don't know if I can get into Monster Hunting. It's one of those series I've heard about for years and do intend to try at some point, but I keep putting it off and never getting around to it. It's right up there with stuff like Resident Evil, Starcraft, 2D Mario games, numbered Final Fantasies, Fire Emblem and any number of other series there just isn't enough time in a life to get around to :P

 

I've been playing the new Shadow of the Colossus remake, which is just sublime. I wouldn't call the original game one of my personal favourites, but I wouldn't argue with anyone who wanted to call it one of the greatest games of all time. I've played it exactly once in my life, right around its original release on the PS2 thirteen years ago, and it's left such an indelible mark on me that I still remember how to defeat all the beasts and exactly how all the music goes. It's undoubtedly one of the all-time greats.

 

It can also be an exquisitely frustrating game that makes me absolutely hate it sometimes, and this remake is faithful enough to the original that I've felt all the same rage follow me through time. There's nothing quite like the pit in your stomach that forms when you see your grip gauge is ticking down to nothing and you know you aren't going to be able to climb to a safe spot in time to save yourself, and you're just begging the Colossus to stop wriggling and Wander to stop flailing about because it was so hard to get on top of this giant bozo in the first place. Ooh, it's maddening.

 

But, to be fair, that's the whole point of the game; it's all about the utterly spectacular experience of climbing these giant beings, holding on by your very fingertips as they try desperately to shake you off, and ultimately just barely managing to bring them down. However, unlike Team Ico's newer game The Last Guardian, SotC actually does have the mechanical depth and control-ability to be played well. Wander handles floatily, but not so much that you can't be precise with him, unlike TLG's boy where controlling him is just a mushy nightmare. Having to hold a button to grab hold of things, everything from standard ledge-climbing to Colossus-scaling, keeps you safe in the knowledge that as long as you have juice in your grip gauge and something within arms' reach, you will grab on to something. TLG inexplicably got rid of the grab button and left you with a terrible auto-grab system that just doesn't work at all (ugh, I did not like The Last Guardian, if you hadn't guessed). Shadow of the Colossus is a game that people have been speed-running for years, and there are pretty reliable tactics for exploiting the Colossus AI and doing exactly what you need to do with minimal fuss. That kind of play is a world away from how a newcomer would actually play this game, of course, but it's nice to know that there is that mechanical depth for those who are willing to put the time in.

 

And it's only better in this remake. They've added a new control scheme with a much better button layout (the original option is there for those nutters who like jumping with Triangle, though), got rid of the oodles of input lag from the original so it feels much better to play, redone every texture and asset in the game to look gawrgeous, and finally locked down the framerate so you can actually play the game. The PS2 game was infamous for dropping down to like 10-15FPS and staying there for the entirety of a Colossus fight, which had a certain charm if you pretended the game was killing your console as you killed the Colossus, but wasn't much fun when it led to you falling off something you'd just spent the last twenty minutes trying to climb. This remake is a rock-solid 30 at all times, and if you're playing on a PS4 Pro like this cool customer, there's an optional SIXTY EFF PEE ESS mode that is just blowing my mind. SotC at 60 is a dream.

 

My only complaint with this remake is that it is ultimately the same game, and I'll just never have that experience of discovering it for the first time again. I've ploughed through the first eight Colossi (of sixteen) in about two hours. This game is so unforgettable that I literally can't forget how to play the damn thing, and I know all the puzzle solutions to take these bad boys down all too well. I know I'm about to come up against the sand snake next, and I know exactly how it's going to go. But, hey, that's hardly something I can blame Bluepoint Games for. This is yet another budget-price no-brainer that I'd feel comfortable recommending to basically anyone who owns a PS4, right alongside Ratchet & Clank, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, and maybe that Crash Bandicoot remake if you like that kind of thing. Shadow of the Colossus is, rightfully, regarded as one of the best, most importantest games of all time, and now you can get a beautifully-remade version for forty American bones for your PS4.

 

I also played through the 2016 Hitman game, and I quite enjoyed it. I've only played just a little sniff of a Hitman game before this one (pretty much just the tutorial of Blood Money), so I think I can call this my first real Hitman game. I always had these games pegged as stealth games, but they really aren't at all, at least not in the traditional sense. They're much closer to the Deus Ex/Dishonored paradigm, but even Hitman has its own distinct flavour. It's a really interesting experience of just walking about a big ol' area, taking in your surroundings, keeping an eye out for any kind of equipment, costume or opportunity you might be able to use, and then being able to execute your plan when the moment comes. It kind of stresses me out, but I also think it's really neat.

 

I appreciate any game with a relatively robust shooting system that I can play through the entire game without ever using, and this game is one of those. The only time I ever actually used a gun was when I was posing as a special ops soldier and I had to run through a training exercise in order to get my assassination target into a vulnerable position. I did my best to get through every mission without a trace, killing only my targets, and even then trying to make it look like an accident, and I botched it a few times but it just made me want to try all over again. This game has that wonderful thing where you can just wander through a level and come across like eight different ways of getting close to your target or through a security checkpoint, or setting some kind of trap for them that'll make you feel amazing when you just casually walk away from their corpse without looking.

 

I was skeptical about this game at its original release, because they put the game out level by level, adding a new playable space every month or so. I think I missed out on an awful lot by just playing through it as a regular, complete game on a disc, though, because I know the devs got huuuuge mileage out of sending out bespoke challenges that task you with playing through a familiar level with a new spin on it each time. Merely putting the target in a different spot changes your mission completely, and I know the devs went much further than that with things like challenging you to kill them in specific ways, with specific weapons, or even wearing specific costumes. I don't know if they're going to be able to make a Hitman Season 2 after Square-Enix sold them, but if they do I think I'm going to be there day one.

 

And, finally, I've been pottering away in The Book of Unwritten Tales 2, a big ol' point and click adventure game. I'm playing on the PS4 because I got this game for a buck in a Humble Bundle, and I was anxious about how it'd play with a controller. It's not great, but it is at least perfectly playable. You walk your character around with the left stick, decide which thing you want to interact with using the right stick, hit X to interact or Circle to just look at a thing. Alternatively, you can hit Square to highlight every interactable thing on screen, then select one from the other side of the room and have your character automatically walk towards it, which is nice. I quite liked the original game (it's got a totally unrecognisable performance from Doug Cockle not doing his Geralt voice), and this one seems like more of the same, so I'll keep puzzling my way through it.

 

EDIT - I also played a tiny little bit of ZombiU, which I bought ages ago and never touched. I'm getting out of the Wii U life, so I'm finishing (or at least trying) the very few games I'm not yet done with and getting this bad boy gone. According to my Activity Log I played exactly 23 minutes of ZombiU, enough to get a little sniff of how the game works and then die in a hilarious mixup where I tried to close a door on a horde of bloodthirsties zambies but ended up locking myself on the outside with the zombers. ZombiU is a permadeath game, where any time you die you have to start over again with an entirely new character, and I imagine go and chase down the zombie of your old character to get your gear back, but I just couldn't be bothered. This really isn't my kind of game, and I was dumb to have bought it in the first place, and trying to play this mid-360-generation-looking FPS on the Wii U at 720p/30ishFPS with long load times to boot was never going to endear me to it. It seems like a fine game if you're into that kind of thing, though.



#4308 broons

broons

    pew pew pew

  • Moderator
  • 5,176 posts

Posted 19 February 2018 - 09:12 PM

Kingdom Come: Deliverance is a very good game guys. It's not without its issues and sometimes it's a little clunky but it's so fun. It's everything I wanted out of a medieval open world RPG.

I've also been playing a lot of Squad lately, and it feels good to be back. I really enjoy playing medic.

Escape From Tarkov is also a decent game but I don't have the time to commit to it as well as the other two.

lWZ8e6F.png


#4309 Ocelot

Ocelot

    #Reylo

  • Moderator
  • 7,762 posts

Posted 09 March 2018 - 08:10 AM

I played The Sexy Brutale, which is a pretty cool and stylish puzzle game with a Groundhog Day time loop mechanic. Or maybe a Majora's Mask time loop mechanic, since we're talking video games. You play as the improbably-named Lafcadio Boone, a man confined to the weird, spooky mansion of an eccentric hermit, doomed to endlessly relive the same day of a swanky dinner party. The twist here is that you and all your fellow guests are being killed off one by one, in a series of gory circumstances perpetrated by the evil, mask-wearing hired help. But a passing blood-soaked ghost lady grants you the power to rewind time to the start of the day whenever you please, and it's up to you to figure out how to save each of the guests from their bloody demises by sneaking about the place, eavesdropping on conversations, peeking through keyholes and other goodhearted skulduggery.

 

I liked it quite a bit. While at first you're confined to a few rooms, eventually the whole mansion opens up to you, and it's usually up to you to find the victim you'll try to save next and then work out exactly what you want to do. You can save at any of a half-dozen or so grandfather clocks around the mansion, and these double as your 'wake up' points every time you restart the day, so you choose how best to go about enacting your rescues. Usually you'll want to spend a day or two tracking your victim and their killer, seeing exactly how the murder is going to go down and eavesdropping on any juicy conversations that might provide a clue as to how you could intervene, and then when you're ready it'll be time to put it all together. 'Day's only stretch from noon to midnight, and the clock seems to speed through an in-game hour in a real-life minute, so you cycle through events pretty quickly and you never have to wait around for long (you can also manually advance time to 4pm or 8pm if you need). I found all the puzzles pretty enjoyable to work out, and the game tells a pretty good story along the way, too. It's good stuff.

 

I've just finished the first episode of Life is Strange: Before the Storm, too, and I'm really glad I gave it a chance. I loved the original Life is Strange, but hearing that this was a Chloe prequel done by a different developer, and with a different voice for Chloe, no less, put me off from the start. I liked Chloe, but I was always a Max Caulfield man, and I just wasn't really interested in a story set before Life is Strange. Admittedly, I was pretty disappointed with the ending of the original, but I still wanted to see what happened after it, rather than before. How are you going to do character development when Chloe canonically still has to be all rough and rude come the start of OG Life is Strange, y'know?

 

Well it turns out Before the Storm is just really good and I'm thoroughly enjoying it regardless of my misgivings about its whole concept. The world of Life is Strange is just such a nice place to be, not only for the pretty graphics, nice music and lovely Pacific Northwestern scenery, but also because it's a place where stupid teenagers can unabashedly be stupid teenagers. The writing is sometimes pretty bad, and the voice actors can sound like kids that walked in off the street, but somehow it all feels more authentically teen-y than any movie or TV show with a cast full of 28-year-old actors playing high schoolers. Chloe is an incredibly on-the-nose character, and downright off-putting sometimes (most of the time, really), but the more time you spend with her the more you realise she's just a little lost girl trying her best to act tough, and she herself probably doesn't even know where the real Chloe ends and the act begins. I mean, maybe that's just be being generous and overlooking flaws in writing and voice acting, but I figure if a game inspires that kind of generosity in me it must be doing something right.

 

I kind of hate Chloe, but I also think she's fantastic, and it's actually a nice feeling to play one of these talk-y/decision-make-y games as a character like her. I was reminded a little of playing GTA V as Trevor, a character more or less perfectly designed to star in a ridiculous game of murdering everything and following your every whim. Chloe in a game of careful decision making and living with your consequences is like a bull in a china shop, and I feel a lot more free about just being rude or standoffish to people than I would with, say, Max. I love getting into character in these games, but it often leads to me trying to play fairly diplomatically, and it's nice to feel like I can pick the Renegade options here, if you will :P

 

So we're some time pre-OG-LiS, with Max still off in parts unknown and a pre-hairdye Chloe as our player character. The first episode deals with Chloe meeting Rachael Amber, the mysterious Laura Palmer analogue we heard about in the first season, and it's good stuff. Same old Life is Strange routine of wandering about and talking to people, and using certain tidbits of information you uncover to get an edge in your next conversation. Chloe doesn't have Max's time rewinding powers, though, so instead the developers have made a new mechanic out of Chloe's own superpower: her mouth. It's called Backtalk, and it's a hilarious little minigame where you just act like a total child and turn people's words back around on them to lay down some sick burns. It's the dumbest thing and I love it. I don't know if you can actually 'lose' a Backtalk opportunity by picking the wrong options, but it's so much fun to just verbally own people like it's the internet in the early 2000s that I don't even care.

 

There are only three episodes this time, but the first one was surprisingly long (with like a twenty minute interlude where I just played Dungeons & Dragons with some dorks at school) and really good, so I can't wait to play the rest.

 

EDIT - I just finished episode 2 of Before the Storm, and oh nooooo it ends on a huge cliffhanger you guys what am I going to do with myself? I told myself I'd only do one episode a night but this is unbearable.

 

EDIT AGAIN - OK, I finished episode 3. I didn't really like it. I think episode 1 was great, just seeing Chloe and Rachel together, but then the story they came up with to flesh out two more episodes just wasn't especially well done or interesting, or even especially Life is Strange-y. Just a really maudlin teen drama. It even feels like the writers lose track of who Chloe is as it goes on. I'll explain more in spoiler land:

 

Spoiler



#4310 Ocelot

Ocelot

    #Reylo

  • Moderator
  • 7,762 posts

Posted 23 March 2018 - 07:41 AM

I finished that there new Kirby game on the Switch, Kirby Star Allies, and... boy, they really sold that for full price, huh? I finished it in probably four hours, and I really can't think of anything to say about it. It only has four worlds and a final boss, and the gameplay is just a wild melee of confusing effects thanks to the three AI partners you have on your screen at all times. The controls feel pretty bad, with all kinds of different attacks you can accidentally do that might send you rocketing across to the other side of the screen where you'll inevitably lose track of which character you are, particularly in hectic bossfights, leaving you to flail wildly until you find yourself again. There's nothing in the way of challenging platforming, no really interesting bossfights, no memorable levels... I'm not hugely familiar with Kirby games, since the only other one I've played was Kirby's Epic Yarn, but I had a wonderful time with that game and this one was just not good at all. I've got nothing here.

 

I just started up Ni no Kuni 2, though, and that seems pretty cool so far. Did you know you play as the President of the United States in this game? Like, seriously. Ni no Kuni 2, that Japanese RPG with the Studio Ghibli art style. I had absolutely no idea about this before I jumped in, and man was that a pleasant surprise. The game opens on some exposition-y lore stuff, then cuts to a modern day city where a middle-aged President is returning to his city in a motorcade just as a nuclear missile obliterates the whole place. Thanks to some magic portal-y stuff, the President is teleported away to another realm (and also somehow de-aged?), and ends up right next to a young Prince just before he's killed by his own soldiers in a coup.

 

I'm playing as the President in a whimsical JRPG about evil mouse people who stole a young Prince's kingdom from him, you guys. Every now and then he just pulls out a gun and blat blats a dude.

 

Oh, and I've been replaying 999: 9 Persons 9 Hours 9 Doors, or whatever the title is. It's the visual novel/puzzle game from the DS where you wake up trapped in a big ol' passenger ship and have to solve puzzles left by a sadistic kidnapper alongside eight other kidnappees. It's a really great game, with this clever meta-textual setup of alternate endings that all lead up to one final ending once you've seen every branch of the story. Basically you play the game once, choosing the path you want to take through various unlockable doors in the ship that will pair you up with different characters. You get your first ending, then the game pops up a message encouraging you to start over from the beginning and choose another path. Your second time through you can hold Right on the D-pad to fast-forward through all the text you've already read, so you make your way to another ending, and then another, and then another. Six endings later you'll be ready to see the real ending, which actually takes the fact that you've been repeating all these events over and over into account and breaks the fourth wall and blows your mind.

 

At least, that's what I remember. I first played this game years ago, so the details are fuzzy, and I'm playing it in Japanese this time so my memory isn't quite being jogged in the way I'd expected. I'm two endings down with the last few to come quickly, and then I'm going to move on to the sequel, Virtue's Last Reward (which I've also already played years ago), and finally the third game, Zero Time Dilemma, which is the one I haven't touched yet. Should be a fun hundred hours of reading :P



#4311 Spark

Spark

    Guardians make their own fate.

  • Nova Member
  • 2,682 posts

Posted 23 March 2018 - 11:39 AM

I've been playing Stardew Valley all week. Wait, week? I've been playing it that much?

 

God, this game is addictive.


PXwSeJy.png

(Click to go to my Tumblr!)
 


#4312 Ocelot

Ocelot

    #Reylo

  • Moderator
  • 7,762 posts

Posted 27 March 2018 - 05:14 AM

I think I might be done with Ni no Kuni 2 after about ten hours or so. It's not a bad game but it's just so light and breezy that I'm really struggling to get invested enough to keep pushing through. The characters and writing and lore are obviously aimed at children, but... like, dumb children. The ones who don't like to read the fun stuff like Roald Dahl and just lap up generic kids' fantasy. So far I've started my own Kingdom, got one neighbouring Kingdom to sign a treaty of interdependence and I'm working on a second ally, but there's just no meat here. There aren't any interesting characters, the world itself has nothing going on, and the story is just "a bad guy is corrupting world leaders and I have to win them back with friendship speeches and fetchquests". Remember when I told you that one of the characters in this game is the US President, teleported into this fantasy world through magic"? That's all there was to that plotline. Twenty minutes later he decides he's going to stay in this world and be the young King's advisor, and that's that; it's never brought up again.

 

Combat is a real-time action RPG kinda thing, with normal attacks, dodges and special attacks that run off a mana gauge you refill with normal attacks. I don't mind simple, but this is braindead easy to the point where I'm effortlessly ploughing through mobs of enemies 15-20 levels higher than I am. The only time I find the game challenging is in an unfortunately mandatory second style of gameplay called Skirmishes, where you control a small army and scurry about a map trying to defeat another army. It's kind of a neat little gameplay mechanic, but it's not something I really want to bother with when I could be pushing the story forward. Unfortunately, the story quests seem balanced around the idea that you're going to be playing the occasional Skirmish of your own volition, so I've just been hoodwinked into a Skirmish that I'm woefully underleveled for, and I feel like this is probably the end for me since I definitely don't have the patience to go and grind.

 

There's a very barebones but still addictive Kingdom Building mode, where you recruit people to come and live in your Kingdom through completing sidequests, then build facilities like Armor Forges and Spellcrafting Laboratories to put them to work in, then check back every twenty minutes for the rest of your life to collect your earnings and funnel them back in to build new things and recruit more people. Your standard video game hamster wheel to run in for a hundred hours. You can't choose which facilities to build, or even where to build them, and you don't recruit many followers so there isn't really any strategy to placing them other than matching them up with the jobs that some bright yellow text will tell you they're "SUITABLE" for.

 

So, I don't know, it seems like a fine game, but I just don't have anything to hold onto here. I don't care where the story's going, the characters are paper thin, the gameplay is entirely autopilot mashing. I feel like half the game's soundtrack is provided by my PS4's fans, too. There's shockingly little voice acting for a modern game; a lot of ten second anime cutscenes that transition into dead silent text boxes immediately afterwards. If it weren't for the very occasional brief snippet of a Welsh accent here and there there'd be no life to the game at all. As far as "RPGs I played for about ten hours and then quit" go, I'm strongly recommend Xenoblade Chronicles 2 over this.

 

EDIT - Far Cry 5 is a pretty cool game. I mean, it's a Far Cry, which means it's more or less just "Ubisoft Open World Game But In First Person", but there's nothing wrong with one of those every now and then. Ubisoft is very good at making more or less the same game over and over again, with the only real differences being time period, setting and guns/no guns. This particular one is present day, rural USA and guns, and it's fun. We're in Hope County, a chunk of Montana under the rule of a crazed religious cult leader trying to declare itself a sovereign nation, and we're playing as an unnamed Deputy of an unnamed law enforcement force tasked with bringing the leader down. After a pretty bad, stilted, slow-walking intro, you're set free in the countryside and given the objectives of taking over each of three territories run by the big bad's Lieutenants before finally taking on the main man himself. You know, video game stuff.

 

So, y'know, you shoot guys, stealth things, take over enemy bases, earn perks to upgrade your character, that kind of thing. There's no "skin three crocodiles to craft a bigger ammo pouch" thing this time, but in its place there's a cool MGSV style Buddy system where you can call in some AI friends to fight alongside you. One's a nice doggy, and some others are various redneck pilots and crazy gun nuts (also one's a cougar), but I never use them because I'm a doggy man. When the doggy gets hurt you can run over and rub his tummy and he gets better again. His name's Boomer and he's a good boy.

 

It's hard not to compare this game to GTA, because it's doing the same pastiche of American culture that those games do, but Ubisoft's writing is a little more hit and miss. There was one hilarious mission I did where the cook at the local diner needed me to bring him some bull testicles for the town's famous once-a-year Testical Festival (the Testy Festy, as the locals call it), and every time he brought it up he had a new pun name for them (my favourite was 'Rocky Mountain Oysters'), but there are just as many moments where the game gets serious and... just doesn't do it well. It's very much one of those "look at our CG face tech!" games, with supposedly charismatic characters getting right up in your face to deliver their performances, but none of them really make an impression. One moment you'll be having fun tailing a helicopter carrying a certain VHS tape of a certain bodily-function-related video that stands to bring down a certain President, but the next the game will be trying super hard to be True Detective and failing.

 

But it's good, and I'll probably finish this bad boy. It's full of those great open-world moments where all the various systems collide and result in pure chaos, and the more scripted story missions are pretty cool. I've got a good thing going with my sniper rifle, shotgun, bow & arrow and Boomer, and I'm going to enjoy myself.



#4313 Patriot 96

Patriot 96

    Lego fan

  • Nova Member
  • 216 posts

Posted 02 April 2018 - 09:42 AM

Just got AC Origins, Far Cry 5, and Kingdom Come: Deliverance.

 

Assassin's Creed Origins: Wait, I can't just spam "Y, X" over and over again to win?

 

Far Cry 5: This is my first Far Cry game and so far it is pretty good. Also questioning why I can't just fly that plane or helicopter I just stole out of the county to get some reinforcements, and perplexed at how quickly I went from law abiding rookie cop to the freaking Punisher. I'm fairly certain that 1/3rd of the kills I've made in that game would be illegal.

 

Kingdom Come:Deliverance, more on it when I progress farther, but it is a first person historical RPG set in 15th century Bohemia, and emphasis on historical. YOU CANNOT ONE MAN THAT ENTIRE GROUP OF BANDITS.



#4314 Ocelot

Ocelot

    #Reylo

  • Moderator
  • 7,762 posts

Posted 13 April 2018 - 09:19 AM

So I took Ubisoft up on their offer of a free weekend of Ghost Recon Wildlands, because I want to see that Splinter Cell crossover event they've got going on. It took me all night and most of the next day to get all 42GB of it downloaded to my PS4, but what can you do?

 

Having just finished Far Cry 5, Wildlands struck me as basically the same game, just with some variables tweaked. Swap North America for South America, first person for third, faux-serious tone for real-serious tone and add three AI companions; other than that it's another giant Ubisoft map full of bases to first mark all the men in then kill all the men in then retrieve an important item, get your XP and move on. We're serious business Tom Cuh-Lancy here, so it's all about intel and supplies rather than cool cars and painted guns like Far Cry, but it's pretty much the same loop all over again. The map is split up into regions, each region has a leader who you'll have to take down by first clearing some bases and finding some intel, and then once you've cleared all the regions you can take down the real bad man. Even the controls are mostly identical. Ubisoft just rolls these bad boys off the production line like clockwork.

 

So there's a big ol' Tom Cuh-Lancy story going on about some bad dudes, and I guess my character is a well-known black ops guy or something, but that's not what we're here for, right? We want to see Sam Fisher! Proper, Michael Ironside Sam Fisher! Well, the internet told me he was in the region named La Cruz, so I beelined over there and got a call from a familiar voice calling himself Matchwood. He told me to wait until 21:00 hours, when he'd call again with details. I promptly got myself way the hell out into the wilderness looking for some guys to shoot, and of course when he called me back the waypoint he sent me to was miiiiles away and I had to make a mad dash down from the mountains in the middle of the night to try and reach it in time. What awaited me was a ludicrously difficult stealth section through a base full of elite bad guys, where there was a jamming signal making my dude-marking drone inoperable, and I wasn't allowed to kill (or even knock out) any enemies or be spotted. It took me like ten tries to sneak through, sitting through a looooong load time on every failure (and this game's stealth mechanics ain't Splinter Cell grade, I tell you what), but finally I met up with Fisher.

 

He told me he had to hack a computer and needed fire support while he did so, which should have been obvious. Video game developers love forcing you to sneak through an area, with the slightest failure meaning instant game over, only to turn around and force you to go loud and shoot everyone immediately after. They'e sadistic monsters like that. Further proof of said sadism? When I got killed by the billion heavily-armed soldiers and helicopter immediately blazing me, the checkpoint took me right back to the start of the stealth section.

 

So, that was Wildlands. I infer that the Splinter Cell mission was probably aimed at the kind of people who've been playing this game for months or years and have some experience and upgrades under their belts, rather than a schmuck like me who'd literally played for an hour, but there's no coming back from something like that. I've never uninstalled a game faster :P

 

Oh, hey, I forgot to talk about Far Cry 5. It was good, but I might also say that it was entirely throwaway and I'll probably never ever think about it ever again now that I'm done with it. That feels harsh, but, honestly, it's just so cookie-cutter Ubisoft that there's really nothing that's going to stick with me. For some baffling reason they went with a Gordon-Freeman-style silent, non-communicative protagonist, which to me just instantly torpedoes any hope of there being a good story. Far Cry 5 is a game about bad guys capturing you, monologuing into your blank, unreactive face, then eventually letting you go so you can kill them (or at least a few dozen of their men). Like, that is what every main story mission is. The game leans super hard on this idea that the bad guys can simply catch you whenever they please, whether it's because of their roving bands of tranq-bullet-armed cronies, a psychedelic drug that can pull you into their own magic world, or a post-hypnotic suggestion thing implanted in your mind that apparently makes you go to them off-screen, and at a certain point I just had to roll my eyes. The only thing worse is when they straight up tell you they're going to come for your friends, and then you do literally nothing to stop them, and then sure enough in the next story mission they've captured all your friends. EVERY TIME.

 

So there's a big ending twist that comes out of left-field, but it happens just minutes before the credits roll so there's no consequence to any of it. I guess all these Far Crys share a continuity, so Far Cry 6 might make some mention of it, but there's really not much you can say about it in this game. It just happens and then the game ends. I'll spoilerise it just for fun:

 

Spoiler

 

EDIT - I just finished Tacoma, and I thought it was great. It's another walking simulator from the makers of Gone Home, only this time you're walking around a space station as a contractor working to uncover what has caused the entire station to go incommunicado. It's an almost entirely audio-log-based game, but it has a really clever way of shoring up the usual problems you get with audio-logs in games, so join me as I explain to you the cool new stuff this video game does with recordings of people's voices!

 

OK, so we're in the future here, and all employees of this space station are required to wear two little electronic devices that attach to either side of the bases of their skulls. These doohickies track the wearer's position on the space station, as well as their vital signs and anything they might say or do during their time aboard, and wearing them is akin to signing away your whole life and rights to anything you ever do in perpetuity. You know, standard Ts & Cs these days. All these data are collated by the station's on-board AI and stored in databanks, enabling you to enter the station after the fact and review the exact events that led up to the station going dark some time earlier. You do this by walking into a room, being prompted to recover the logs of a conversation that happened there, and then actually watching said conversation play out in real time by holographic representations of the people who did the conversing. At any point you can use the Space, Q and E keys to pause, rewind or fast-forward the audio-log, which is really handy, and you have to be close to the people doing the talking to hear what they're saying. Essentially you're an omniscient observer eavesdropping on conversations, with the power to pause and rewind time at your whims, so it's a really neat way of getting around the usual audio-log problems of sounds playing over the top of dialogue you're trying to hear, or a log getting cut off if you move too far ahead in the game or whatevs.

 

The game is mostly a pretty straight-forward walking simulator, but there are some nice opportunities for some immersive-sim-style puzzle solving and optional objectives along the way. The game has its fair share of locked keypads that need four-digit passcodes, and you'll find them in e-mails, environmental clues, and even embedded in the audio-logs themselves (i.e. a character will open a locked door in the audio-log, and you'll have to scrub through it to find the right point then look over their shoulder to see which keys they press). That feeling of intruding upon a living world, sneaking into people's private spaces and reading all their e-mails and personal messages is here in spades, and we all know that's the best part of one of these games. Don't try to deny it, you love it as much as I do.

 

There's a cheeky little ending twist that'll make you say "Ooooooh!", same as Gone Home, and it's just a nice three-ish hours of video game to knock over in one sitting and make you feel like you've accomplished something for once.



#4315 Ocelot

Ocelot

    #Reylo

  • Moderator
  • 7,762 posts

Posted 20 April 2018 - 06:57 AM

Oh boy you guys I just played the first hour of that new God of War and I was totally wrong to doubt this game! I thought they'd Last-of-Us'd it, and while I really like The Last of Us, I just wasn't super hyped to play it again with a Kratos skin. I'm not a huge God of War fan, I don't really like Kratos; I knew I'd play it because I do like these big, expensive, story-focused games, but I can't say I was really jumping out of my skin with excitement, y'know?

 

And then all those 10/10 reviews hit and I started feeling that hype start to creep in, and after the first hour of gameplay? Forget about it. This game is awesome. It is very Last of Us, and with a heaping helping of Nu Tomb Raider in terms of overall structure (3D Metroidvania-y pseudo-open world with collectibles to find and quests to do), but then it suddenly throws you into a SUPER SICK BOSSFIGHT that's like UH! UH! UH! and the combat system is simple but it feels so good and crunchy and you just wreck dudes and you can throw your axe and then call it back to your hand like Thor's hammer and it feels amazing. UUUUUUHHHHHH!

 

This game is good. I'll keep you posted as I keep playing.



#4316 Spark

Spark

    Guardians make their own fate.

  • Nova Member
  • 2,682 posts

Posted 30 April 2018 - 09:32 PM

God of War is the best Thor videogame ever made.


PXwSeJy.png

(Click to go to my Tumblr!)
 


#4317 Ocelot

Ocelot

    #Reylo

  • Moderator
  • 7,762 posts

Posted 05 May 2018 - 03:38 AM

I've played a lot of that God of War, you guys. Probably like 50 hours of it at this point, which is, shockingly, still not enough to finish it finish it. I think I'm going to try and get the Platinum Trophy, and to get there I have a whole randomly-generated dungeon to plunder, a bunch of trials to do, and another lap of the world to find all the nooks and crannies I missed the first time around. It seems all too easy to make a big long game today, in this age of the Ubisoft formula leaking its checklists and tickboxes into every genre there is, but in God of War's case I think they actually came by this length honestly, if that makes sense. It's a long game, but it's about a man and his son going on a long journey so it needed to be long. It's got its crafting mechanics, leveling systems and sidequests, but it only has a handful of quite unique sidequests rather than a million cookie-cutter ones, and there's no grinding or farming necessary to craft or level. When a new batch of sidequests opened up my reaction was never "Uuuuuuuugh", but rather "Ooh!", and that's what it's all about.

 

I think God of War 2018 is a lot like Horizon Zero Dawn, in that, ultimately, it isn't anything we haven't seen before, but it's a familiar formula executed extremely well. Where Horizon was a Far Cry, God of War is a Rise of the Tomb Raider: a midway-point between linear and open world, with a dash of Metroidvania thrown in for flavour, where the journey from tutorial to credits is long enough to support a nice bit of meaty exploration and sidequest-ery along the way. There isn't a modern AAA video game trope you won't find here, whether it's squeezing between cracks in rocks, boosting your AI buddy up a high wall so they can open a path, low-intensity rock climbing while you admire a view or eavesdrop on a conversation (and, of course, you can only climb on the rocks that somebody's painted white for you), or any number of others; the Last of Us inspiration is always apparent, as is the inspiration from Dark Souls, funnily enough. God of War has a few of its own tricks, like its one-shot, single-take camerawork, but there's nothing here that could be considered a game changer.

 

But, just like Horizon, it's awesome! I mean, not every game can flip over the metaphorical table of social mores, and those popular tropes became popular in the first place because we like'em. Sidequests are cool, and I like crafting a cool new set of armour. I've seen people say that God of War has lost its unique identity here, but they made six damn near identical God of Wars in the old style, and I just don't need another one of those. I think what we have here is a really excellent update of what was, for me at least, a very tired formula, and I really enjoyed it. And the other reason I don't think this game has lost its identity is that this game is hella God of War! Everything from the old God of Wars is here, just with an entirely reworked camera and combat system, and for my money it's better than it's ever been. I was never a huge fan of the old games, but I liked God of War 2 (from the same director as this game), and this one is by far my favourite one yet.

 

The combat is just so good. Umph. There are a few niggling shortcomings holding it back from going toe-to-toe with the big Japanese boys of the 'hitting guys with weapons' genre, such as lacking enemy variety and certain parts of the moveset that just aren't all that useful, but for the most part it's just an excellent combat system. Every now and then I'll kind of wake up from my red haze of combat fury and realise that I've been just obliterating dudes the whole time. UH UH UHHHHHHHHHH, you hit guys so hard in this game! That axe is one of my favourite video game weapons ever, because there's just so much cool stuff you can do with it. What starts with just light/heavy attacks evolves into a system with hold combos, pause combos, directional inputs and mid-dodge attacks that let you continue doing damage even while evading. You can do a quick throw for light damage or a heavy throw that takes a little longer to come out, but one of the upgrades gets you a throw combo that involves targeting a weak point with your quick throw, calling the axe back to your hand (like MCU Thor) with the right timing, which powers up your next throw with explosive splash damage. And if you don't want to call the axe back you can just leave it where it falls and wade in with your bare fists, which feels so good.

 

You unlock a third weapon later in the game, and I won't spoil it, but it feels pretty good, too. I don't think quite as much thought went into it as the axe, but it still has its own fun tricks and it's nice to have variety. The axe carries the element of frost, whereas the third weapon is fire, and I was a bit disappointed to see that the game falls into the old trap of "Kill fire enemies with the ice thing and ice enemies with the fire thing". Not the end of the world, but us Devil May Cry insufferable elitists fans like things a little less clear cut than colour-coding the enemies to the weapons, y'know? I might also offer the complaint that it takes rather too long to fully upgrade all your abilities and unlock the entire moveset to play around with, but then I guess you need something to keep working towards in a long game. Each new upgrade level of the weapon unlocks a new set of moves to buy, and they're all pretty significant new abilities to play around with, so it's all good. God it feels good to hit dudes in this game. Did I mention that?

 

I said in my first post that the game's first boss bowled me over, but if I'm being brutally honest, I don't know if the rest of the game really lives up to that hype level. There are a few other cool bossfights over the journey, but they're few and far between, and for the most part it is just a lot of exploring areas, fighting some dudes, solving some environmental puzzles and moving on to the next pseudo dungeon. A couple of glorified QTE bossfights along the way, too, unfortunately. I really could have used a few more unique bosses in the vein of that first one. And to be even more brutally honest? I could have done with a different villain, too. The game keeps talking up Odin and Thor as being huge jerks who need a good killing, and I was sure they were going to show up at some point, but as the game went on it became clear we were only going to see the one dude, and I don't think he had the chops to carry the whole game. The final moments of the 'Kratos & son vs. Norse Gods' storyline really fell flat for me.

 

But I thought the 'Kratos & son learning to live with eachother' storyline was great, though. It doesn't have the emotional weight of your Last of Us-es, but it was a really nice story, well-told, well-acted. I liked both characters, and that's saying something, because I really disliked Kratos in the old games and I usually hate child actors. Everyone you meet along the way is pretty great, too, with the standout being, obviously, our ol' pal THE WORLD SERPENT! 

 

god-of-war-no-graphics-downgrade-world-s

 

I seriously loved this guy. He's the biggest thing you've ever seen in a video game, and he spends the whole game just chilling in and around this big lake you go for daytrips on. Every now and then you summon him by blowing on a massive horn, and you get your little disembodied head pal there to talk to him in his tongue of the Giants, and he responds in this otherworldly bellow that could shake entire continents, and I just loved him. Every time one of the characters said "Maybe we should talk to the World Serpent?" I was beside myself with glee. Love that dude. Character of the year. Serpent of the year. SOTY 2018.

 

So, yeah, God of War. It doesn't reinvent the wheel, but it is a big, expensive singleplayer game, with staggering attention to detail and massive setpieces and good crunchy combat, and that particular kind of broadly-appealing AAA video game design where I'd honestly recommend it to basically anyone. I think you'd have to try pretty hard to not enjoy it even just a little bit.



#4318 Spark

Spark

    Guardians make their own fate.

  • Nova Member
  • 2,682 posts

Posted 06 May 2018 - 12:27 AM

One more thing about the whole

Spoiler


PXwSeJy.png

(Click to go to my Tumblr!)
 


#4319 Ocelot

Ocelot

    #Reylo

  • Moderator
  • 7,762 posts

Posted 06 May 2018 - 02:18 AM

One more thing about the whole

Spoiler

 

acM3is5.jpg

 

Spoiler

 

EDIT - Alright, I Platinum'd Dad of War. God of Boy. Dad of Boy. It was great! Maybe a bit of a grind towards the end, but I brought it on myself, and it went down easy with a podcast or two. I can't wait to see what they do next with that game, whether it's DLC that opens up another one or two of the nine realms or just a sequel that makes good on that devilish tease at the end. Good video games.

 

EDIT:

 

2h2mFqS.png

 

OpMrayy.gif



#4320 Ocelot

Ocelot

    #Reylo

  • Moderator
  • 7,762 posts

Posted Today, 03:54 AM

I've been playing Ryu ga Gotoku Ishin, a.k.a. Yakuza Ishin, a.k.a. that one Yakuza spinoff set in samurai sword Japan that came out early in the PS4's lifespan and was never translated into English, a.k.a. just watch this trailer and tell me it doesn't look sick:

 

 

So the Ryu ga Gotoku Studio makes a lot of these games, and they're all set in the same city with the same characters rolling in and out, and I think every now and then they get a bit sick of it and have to do something different. So far we've had two sword-and-sandal spinoffs, one zombie spinoff, and one Fist of the North Star spinoff, and even two PSP games with a different character that I don't think ever saw the light of day outside Japan. The one we're looking at here is the second samurai sword game, set in around about 1860 by our Western calendar, during a time that the Japanese call Ishin and we Westerners call the Meiji Restoration. Long story short, Japan is switching over from the Feudal system with Shogunates and swords and stuff to the Imperial system with a new capital city and guns. The game is mostly set in Kyoto, Japan's old capital city in the last few years before they switch capitals and rename Edo as Tokyo, and we're playing as a fellow named Ryoma Sakamoto (who I understand is actually a real figure from history, but I don't want to read up on him too much for fear of spoiling this game's story for myself).

 

But before you get the impression that this is some sober, fact-checked take on real Japanese history, just know that I've spent the last ten hours tracking an actual Ninja who broke into my home town's castle and killed my Dad with an incredibly powerful secret martial arts style. I made friends with the proprietor of an udon restaurant who was so taken with my skills playing his udon-selling minigame that he asked me to run a second branch of his franchise for him. A man who'd fished every day for years but never once caught anything asked me to give him some of my fish so he could convince his wife to let him keep fishing every day. The teacher at a local dancing academy was so taken by the grace and prowess I showed while violently assaulting the ruffians trying to mug her that she invited me to dance on stage. Oh, and one time I was at a bathhouse when some guy stole my clothes and I had to chase him through the city in a loincloth, and THAT ISN'T EVEN THE NAKEDEST I'VE BEEN IN THIS GAME:

 

bvEXfae.gif

 

I guess I always mentally wrote this game off as something smaller in scale than your typical Yakuza, since they never bothered selling it in the West and I'd always heard it was 'just' a spinoff, but I was super wrong because this game is huge and every bit as wonderfully silly as all the other Yakuzas. I don't think there's any series out there that can so expertly flit back and forth between pure absurdity and genuinely good dramatic moments. One minute you're infiltrating the powerful, corrupt secret police force of the day to take down their murderous captains from within, and the other you'll be bluffing your way through a class at the local school teaching the kids which country is which on a primitive globe of the world after their teacher flags you down begging for help because he's never so much as seen a map before. You have four different fighting styles, but they all run the gamut from perfectly mo-cap'd, period-appropriate sword techniques to kicking a guy into the air and shooting him three times before he hits the ground again. If you do a context-sensitive special move near a body of water you just pick a dude up like a sack of potatoes and throw him straight in. It's the best.

 

The cool thing about these Yakuza spinoffs is that they keep the same cast of characters we know and love from the regular Yakuzas, but they 'recast' them as different people. Eagle-eyed regular readers of my overlong posts about Yakuza games might notice series regular Kiryu in that gif up there, fighting Ryuji Gohda (main villain of Yakuza 2). In fact, it's actually Kiryu's voice actor and Kiryu's face, but recast as Ryoma Sakamoto. Likewise, Ryuji is playing a different guy, and practically every character in this game is a reimagined version of a series mainstay. Some of them are more or less the same person as always, but often they'll be playing a different take on their usual character, and it's a lot of fun to see who's 'playing' who. It's something I don't think I've ever seen in any other game; not just a voice actor playing a different character, but a voice actor playing a character who is playing a different character. I like it a lot.

 

So I'm trying to go off and join the Shinsengumi, but the game just opened up a huge new section of Kyoto to explore and there are a million things I need to do and people I need to talk to before I move on with the main story. God I love these games.

 

I've also been playing Zero Time Dilemma, the third in the series of Zero Escape games after 999 and Virtue's Last Reward. This time it's less visual novel than just a series of cutscenes with terrible low-budget 3D models and animation, but it is at least good Japanese practice for me. I've heard nothing but bad things about this game, and it's hard not to let that kind of reception get to you when you go into a game. You're always thinking, "Is this the bad part? That wasn't so bad; when's it going to get really bad?", and it colours every moment of the experience. I don't think this game has been all that bad so far... buuuut I just hit a twist so ridiculous that I think I might understand what people are talking about. I'm right near the end, though, so I'm going to finish it before I go into any detail. Maybe it gets worse!






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

,