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2016 VIDEO GAME CATCH-ALL THREAD


Gonzo
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Finished Life is Strange episode 5 this morning...

Spoiler

That fucking choice at the end! I got the impression that was what it was building to during the conversation with Warren during the storm. But they just torture you all the way up to it, then continue to do so after you've made it. I sacrificed Chloe. For what i assume is considered the good ending they sure do like to make you feel bad for making the 'right' choice. Even if making that decision is incredibly cruel to the characters, i cant accept killing everyone else is the better option.

Such a great game and completely different to what i normally play.

I'm not sure how i feel about a potential season 2 (since this was labeled season 1). I'd love more but this story has been told. I don't want them to retcon all of this out of existence just to make more since Max's story has finished. I think the best option is keeping with the same theme but new characters and locations, maybe a cameo at some point.

Life is Strange is getting added to the new platinum hunting list. All i'm missing is a few photos from early on in the game so it shouldn't take too long to knock it out.

2015 had some real gems i missed out playing. The pile of shame rolls on.

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On 5/15/2016 at 11:19 PM, odessasteps said:

I have become very intrigued with No Man's Sky. Reading a bunch of the hype articles.

This reminds me that I could probably go ahead and bump the thread I started for this already, now that we're within a month of the release date.

But yes. . .I'm at one of those awkward points where I don't want to buy anything that I'm going to get too involved in before this comes out. Thought about Overwatch, but I've never been able to put in the time in games like that to really be any good at them.

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20 hours ago, Gonzo said:

This reminds me that I could probably go ahead and bump the thread I started for this already, now that we're within a month of the release date.

But yes. . .I'm at one of those awkward points where I don't want to buy anything that I'm going to get too involved in before this comes out. Thought about Overwatch, but I've never been able to put in the time in games like that to really be any good at them.

Oooh, good point. I'm due another Witcher 3 run with "Blood and Wine" coming out next week.

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Just finished my first run of the Uncharted 4 campaign.

Overall pretty happy with how it turned out.  I have a couple story quibbles, but nothing too egregious.  There is a nice sense of finality, so I kind of hope this is the last Uncharted game for the foreseeable future.  

Things I do miss are Co-op Adventure and Co-op Arena.  I really liked those aspects from Uncharted 3.  

Vehicle play and the open areas turned out great.  I like how they incorporated.  Specifically, the vehicle stuff wasn't shoved down our throats like with Arkham Knight.  This was just the right mix for using the vehicles.  

I loved how the journal was used here as a storytelling and gameplay device.

Not sure how everyone else feels, but I think Naughty Dog found a really good balance in providing some sections with a wider open area with some more exploration instead of just one open-world sandbox.  Putting it in the Madagascar jungles made it feel a lot more epic and not artificial since it's still a fairly linear game.  I preferred the stealth approach for these areas, specifically because this way I could just easily takedown the shotgun brutes instead of risking life and limb for an all-out shootout.  

I will still never find equal footing with Warren Spector trashing the Uncharted games.  These games are special and just make you feel great things.  

I think this game is also symbolic of why Uncharted can't work as a movie.  A movie simply can't capture the feelings and greatness you get while playing this game.  What I find so amazing about Uncharted is that I feel like I'm Steven Spielberg directing my own Raiders of the Lost Ark, and I'm enabling the characters along the way.  Few gaming experiences can duplicate this feeling IMHO.

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Overwatch is so awesome. Every new character I play I think, "this is too difficult to learn this new character" and within a game or two I get the hang of it. So far I think I like Mei the best.

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So I clicked on this youtube video about how Blizzard was trying to get Overwatch videos off of the internet, and I thought they meant Let's Plays and didn't understand why they would want to do that. But apparently there's a shitload of fan-made Overwatch porn that they want rid of.

Some people have too much time on their hands.

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Random SMG2 update for my own posterity: After completing the set of 120 green stars, I have unlocked Grandmaster Galaxy. It seems a challenge, but I think that with some practice (and a few deaths), I can beat it once and then get the Prankster Comet and beat it again without being hit. It'll just take patience and an infinite number of lives, which I'll get by abusing the "Giant Koopa" lives trick in the Tiny-Huge Galaxy (or whatever that thing is called). 

The Green Stars were about ten percent really fun to find and get to and ninety percent "dive off this ledge and maybe we'll register you falling into the star before you get sucked into that black hole over there." This game is sort of brutal to get through because the percentage of good stars in this game might just be countable on five hands...not great for a game with 242 fucking stars. 

I think that a Mario game that uses stars should really have most of, if not all of, those stars placed in a way to reward exploration. To me, that's what was so great about Super Mario 64. Even the bad stars (the star stuck in the wall, the one hundred coin stars in every level especially Tick Tock Clock) were at least stars that promoted exploration and experimentation. In Galaxy 2, you're shunted along linear paths. Well, why not just have flagpoles in that case? In 64 and Sunshine, you actually had to look for stars or shine sprites and think about what you might try in order to find them. In the Galaxy games, you (mostly) follow the obstacle course to its end to get the star. That's not what I want out of my 3D Mario games; I could just play 2D Mario to follow a linear path to an end goal, and since SMB3 and SMW blow these Galaxy games away in terms of course design, I will certainly play those games again before I play these games again. 

It's kind of a bummer that I genuinely haven't loved a Mario platformer since 64. That game is almost twenty years old (!!!) now. Still, I'd rather that Nintendo went back to Sunshine-style 3D Mario platformers because, as many problems as that game had, it at least was interesting to explore and forced you to think a little bit about where to go...even if the Blue Coin challenges were terrible. 

When WiiUs drop to $150 or less, I'll have to play through 3D World just to do it, but as a 3D game with flagpoles, I'm already sorta prejudiced against the idea that it will be any good. I'll be glad to be proven wrong about that, however. 

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Generally not huge on straight up multi-player games these days other than Battlefield but Overwatch is heck of fun. I suck at these games but I've been tearing it up with Reaper on offense (such a 14-year-old "brooding" character though, ugh) and Bastion on defense. The modes generally create dramatic finishes though I'm starting to see some blowouts. Love the art style. It's got a bit of Timesplitters, Power Stone, and Street Fighter II (what with all the locations and pronounced national characteristics) in it. Oh, and the slow pace the characters have. Love that shit. I think that's the main reason why I'm not the drizzling shits at this game. You have to rely more on using your character's strengths and powers, like, you know, strategy, rather than rely on twitch kills.

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I picked up Street Fighter V for $20 and installed and played through the tutorial and tested the story mode.

Man, I can see why this thing was super criticized.

1) The lack of a true offline arcade mode that has existed within every Street Fighter game ever is a bit disappointing especially for a casual fighter.
2) The Story mode and cut scenes are all these sketch drawings that are well drawn, but look really bad when having to listen to lengthy voiceover.

I'll try and put more time into this over the weekend, but I wish there was a good way for me to find a character that I really like. I never really put enough time to be comfortable with someone in SFIV, and I hate the cliche of just using Ryu or Ken.

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I just got Life Is Strange the other day since it's on sale on PSN. It had my interest until I got to the point where the core mechanic of the game is introduced, at which point it had my full attention. I'm playing it like I think that I would were I in the main character's position, but I really want to go back and play it a second time as a jackass already, making enemies everywhere. I'm not even through the first episode yet, though. 

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I've posted a few times about Life is Strange in the past few weeks. It's a damn good game, one of the best I've played this year. I'd never played any of these episodic choice games before so i was a little unsure of what to expect but ended up loving it. Like yourself, i tried to do what i thought the characters or myself would have done in the various situations. But it's real tempting to do a second playthrough just to be a dick to everyone.

While i'm here, anyone know how i get rid of that empty spoiler box below? Either i'm missing something incredibly simple or there's no way to delete it? Hell, i'm not sure i even put it there, where the hell did it come from?

Spoiler

 

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Basara, check your HTML via the full editor. You probably have some spoiler tags that you haven't deleted. 

Small gaming update here since I have some time to play because of the Memorial Day weekend. 

Super Mario Galaxy 2: I finally did the Perfect Run in Grandmaster Galaxy and hit 242 stars, during which I had maybe one of the five worst video game deaths of my life (third Boomerang Brother that I needed to beat to access the final Launch Star was down when a Hammer Brother flinging hammers off-screen hit me in mid-final-kick of the Boomerang Brother). I had to cut the console off and sit down for a few minutes to collect myself before I cut it back on and beat it in about three lives.

I have now got every star in the Galaxy games on my own and will probably never pick these up again unless I have kids who want to play them. I will say that even though I sort of powered through each game just to say that I 100%'ed them, no star was as tedious as getting one hundred coins on Tick Tock Clock in Super Mario 64, thankfully. 

WWE 2K16: I bought the Season Pass, which has so many new characters - Zbyszko! Boss Man! Arn Anderson! Rikishi! Fujinami! Col. Robert Fucking Parker! - that it was well worth the money. I enjoyed the little HoF storylines, especially the Savage/Jake one because that angle was awesome as fuck. 

Life Is Strange: I'm still on day one and playing this in bits. The game hasn't grabbed me like TWD Season One or The Wolf Among Us did, where I voraciously plowed through. Actually, I think that part of the problem is that I'm not really invested in any of the characters. I don't really like anyone yet, and I have no real human connection with any of the characters. If this game is going to force me to make hard choices down the road, I'm going to need it to do a better job of setting up those hard choices by developing the human qualities of the characters so that I do care, or forcing me into tough decisions like the "burn Aunty Greenleaf's tree and fuck the poor fables over or let her run an illegal operation that is probably being used to facilitate terrible crimes by some of her customers" decision in TWAU. I don't yet see that either of these things is really being set up via the narrative, but we'll see. 

I do know that I'm about to abandon my "play this game like a decent person" plan though because the right-wing survivalist security guard asshole needs to die, and I'll do whatever I can to facilitate that. Like fuuuuuck that guy. 

Downwell: I have now bought this game three times. I bought it on iOS, but even though I enjoyed it, I really didn't like playing via touch screen that much. I got it for two bucks during a Steam sale, and on PC, I figured out the combo game and enjoyed it way more - much easier to play the game the way that it was meant to be played when not using touch to maneuver your character.

So, it's now out on PS4/Vita and is cross-buy, so I dropped five bucks for it, and now my Vita is essentially a Downwell machine, at least for the past few days. Once I figured out that getting extra health when you're already at max health fills a bar that, when filled, extends your max health, it came into full view how much the game wants you to make these little snap decisions while you fall through space that have massive effect on how well you do in the end game. So many times, I have to think about continuing my combo or stopping it to be safe by landing so that I can preserve my health and thus make it easier to extend the health bar later on. 

I hit the fourth area and also realized just how important power-ups that allow you to shoot upward are, as so many enemies attack from the air. I've made it to, but not beaten, the third part of that fourth area just before the boss, and the one time I made it, I was done in by not having enough bullets on screen to counteract the multiple avenues of attack that enemies took. Knowing this now, everything I do, from deciding whether or not to continue or drop a combo to choosing a powerup at the end of a level is imbued with the power of consequential choice in a way most games that center on the consequences of choice as a central conceit are not. In the end, Downwell is still a shooter at its core, but it is one of the most complex shooters that I've ever played. 

 

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Recently, I worked out that I have a mental review scale that's basically a four star scale, so I'm gonna start using that more. Essentially:
4: I love it
3: I don't regret buying it
2: I regret buying it
1: I hate it

anyways.

MINI METRO [4]- Slept on this last year, deeply deeply regret it. this is probably the best or second best game that came out in 2015 (this or Nuclear Throne). It's essentially an RTS about public transport. It's so streamlined and gorgeously designed that I've been in awe of it since I started playing, and I've kept playing on account of the daily challenges. There's only one thing the game's missing, which is a way to view some portion of how the top scores on the leaderboards worked. Maybe a full replay is out of the question, but even like a screen shot of their last moments would contribute a lot to understanding how these players are scoring thousands on maps I'm only scoring hundreds on. That's really the only change I could see being made that would make it a better game. Everything else about it is Just Right.

MONUMENT VALLEY [3]- One of those indie games where a bunch of blubbering empathy voids thinks it's bullshit that it got positive attention. I won't say that I was in love with it or anything like that, but it is really pretty and did make for a couple of emotionally effecting moments involving a moving pillar, so that's a hell of a trick.  Plus it's like $3 and another $3 for the DLC levels?

HITMAN GO [2]- The kind of puzzle game where it makes you feel stupid way more often than it lets you feel smart. Not enjoying it. Desert Golfing is still pretty much the Default Game on my phone.

POCKET CARD JOCKEY [4]- A horseracing solitaire game that has a sense of humor like I wrote it. It's $7 on 3DS and it has a demo with a full useful tutorial. Instead of expanding any further, I'm just going to share some horse names I've run into that make me laugh: Shaolin Style, Eastern Egg, My Back Hurts, My Legs Hurt Too, and Fake Horse.

DOOM [3]- I remember when people's written impressions of the Quakecon secret DOOM trailer were going around, and Death From Above said "oh so they just made Brutal DOOM." Yeah, they sort of did. Aaaaaand it's great. I don't really know where to start. All the parts about playing it are really good. The only thing that I'm negative about is the multiplayer, which is just so weird and tonedeaf to the singleplayer campaign. I remember hearing they outsourced it, and it shows.

DOUBLE DRAGON ON PS4 [2]- Decent with a friend, but, only the one time. He won the girl.

OVERWATCH [4]- it's quake but superheroes

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I've seen the "DOOM's multiplayer isn't very good" critique a lot, including some otherwise sane people giving the game a failing grade because of it, and I just laugh inside every time I see it. There are literally 300 FPS games on the market for that. Who are these people that know DOOM but were really looking forward to that noted DOOM multiplayer experience?

 

This isn't to say "DOOM's multiplayer isn't very good" isn't true, or a valid critique on some level, but I just can't imagine who was excited by the prospect of 2016 DOOM that actually cared to begin with.

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I mean, I don't think it's unreasonable because of how good the shooting feels in the campaign. The campaign is like, an alternate solution to all of the questions that Call of Duty was originally an answer to (how do we make ammo management interesting, how do we stop the health hunting loop, what does "a level" mean). The multiplayer is just them going "nah COD is right tho." Two weapons, character classes, unlocks, etc. It's a very notably tired conceit in a game that is otherwise ecstatic and fresh.

And! Considering how much I like Quake, that they made an FPS that's that fast and then made structure around it that I don't want to touch ever again sort of bums me out. I guess we still have to figure out the way forward after the COD multiplayer model.

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I know I'm way late to the party, but Rocket League is just a ton of relatively uncomplicated fun. I'm 90 years old and nearly had the big one, Elizabeth, celebrating when I scored my first goal. Should've bought this months ago. jstout423 if anyone's playing this on XBox One or PC.

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