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2021 VIDEO GAME CATCH ALL THREAD


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18 minutes ago, Andrew POE! said:

For Sony, focusing on PS5 and its bare minimum library with games being delayed constantly is their future.

https://www.xboxachievements.com/news/news-38332-microsoft-reiterates-commitment-to-game-preservation-as-sony-announces-plans-to-close-ps3-psp-and-ps-vita-digital-stores.html

Kudos to whichever marketing guy got this out there.  I used to be a Sony loyalist and think their console libraries are great, but my PS5 is pretty much just a machine for exclusives going forward.  Access to the 360 library makes the Xbox Series X more useful to me even though there are enough omissions that I still have my 360 hooked up.

The ironic part is Sony and Microsoft's market research determined that players want access to old games, which is why both platforms support almost everything released for the PS4 and Xbox One.

And the Vita was by no means dead.  Studios were still working on new games for the Vita.  

Edited by Eoae
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4 hours ago, odessasteps said:

I haven't played in months. Might need to dip back in. 

I haven't played NMS in forever, either, but making the move from PS4 to PS5 might be as good an excuse as anything to fire it up again.

I'd like to get through Immortals: Fenyx Rising first, but between the time I finish that and the ME: Legendary Edition drops I could use something to play.

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12 hours ago, J.T. said:

I was not terribly impressed with the Outriders demo.  It tries to be Destiny 2 and Gears of War 5 without doing either particularly well.

It is a cover shooter that encourages you NOT to use cover because the fastest way to regain health is by being aggressive and scoring multikills in a game world where soloing is ill advised thanks to the lopsided enemy counts and lousy boss fight mechanics.

How dumb is that?

It is a game for people who have friends who are stupid enough to buy the game to help them survive the encounters and improve the loot pool.

Oh, and there is inventory to micromanage.  50% of the shit you'll get will most likely be trade fodder or stuff you'll junk for resources. Yay..

And it's multiplayer, so there is no pause feature.  Enemies can still blast the crap out of you while you are in your inventory menu.  Fishing around to check the stats on that pair of boots that just dropped is a recipe for getting perished.

 

 

I don't necessarily disagree with most of this (although I don't mind the inventory part), except to say we have GamePass so its included for free. I do agree from the demo its not a $60 game, it seems to be trying to be a lot of things and not doing any of those things as well as they've been done. Looting not as fun as Borderlands, Cover not as good as Gears, and "special powers" not as good as Mass Effect. I think its fun but its no must-play and no need to rush into it when its still working out the kinks.

No Man's Sky continuing to make itself better is one of the better video game stories of the last decade. I know they were in completely over their head and their false advertising is 100% on them, but they've really gone above and beyond to try to rectify that and continue doing so. They could have just hand-waved it and disappeared, so I give them credit for owning their mistake and giving their journey a happy ending.

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Despite me having a digital only PS5, my streak of ordering collector's editions that comes with the actual game continues. This time, it's Limited Run's Doom: The Classics Collection for the PS4. I was tempted to get Terminator Resistance that they have up there for the PS5, but there isn't enough extra stuff in there to convince me to plop down the $60. I know that's the normal price of a PS5 game, actually a little cheaper, but I'm basically paying for the extra stuff + presentation of the product, and it only comes with some postcards, a comic and a steelbook, so... That's gonna be a pass. Maybe I can find it on eBay later in the year for cheaper or something.

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Xbox folks: 

Check your messages. Microsoft has been sending out codes for a $5 credit, presumably to coincide with the Spring sale currently happening. I know they do this from time to time during sales, but today was the first time I've ever gotten a code myself. Of course, this came a day *after* I bought Immortals...

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Playing Wolfenstein: The New Order and enjoying it a lot.  Wish I had played the Wolfenstein games a long time ago.  The story is batsh** insane, but it works in this context.

Off-topic, the Xbox Series X refrigerator is going to be a real thing.  Microsoft won some sort of social media contest after promising fans that, if they won, they would put the fridge into production.  I've never been into spending money on anything except games, consoles and controllers/peripherals, but I really want one of the fridges.  Hoping the production run isn't limited.  I really don't want to find out what I'm willing to pay an eBay seller for one of these things.

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The Xbox fridge was already a real thing that they used for social media promotion, gifting them to people like Snoop Dogg. What they’re doing now is different, since it’s going to be a mini fridge and presumably mass produced (though I doubt it, I see them making a limited number of them).

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I wound up uninstalling NMS from my PC because I was running out of room. I'm tempted to buy it to play on the PS5 if it looks and plays as well on the PS5 as it did on my PC.

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Spoiler

I finally understand why people are so obsessed with the Dark Souls series. I’m about 10 years late to the party, but man am I glad I discovered this universe. My brother lent me DS Remastered last year but I kept dying to the skeletons by the catacombs in the beginning and the ghosts by New Londo so I gave up on it. Then when we hung out over Christmas he showed me that I was supposed to take a different path up to Undead Burg and that’s when I started to get hooked. I’ve had a lot of friends recommend this game over the years, but it was always something to the effect of “you gotta me play this game, it’s sooo hard” or “they’re amazing but you’re gonna ragequit so much” so I never gave them much attention. I figured they were just hard for the sake of being hard and as an adult with much less free time, the idea of spending precious hours getting nowhere in a game didn’t sound appealing to me. I generally just prefer relaxing games like Stardew Valley or immersive open world games like RDR2 that don’t stress me out too much. I kept dying to the skeletons in the beginning and never thought to look for different paths cause I had been told the game is super hard, and figured that’s how it’s supposed to be and I don’t like it. Once my brother pointed out there was a different path I could take I felt like an idiot. To be fair, a lot of the staircases and side paths in these games are somewhat missable compared to games like Uncharted where the camera angle was always nudging me in the right direction. Getting to the next bonfire was where it clicked and I realized as long as I can make it to the next bonfire I can beat the game. Thanks to my brother constantly giving me tips I was able to get the Ring of FaP, and lots of good gear with intentionality behind my build. I think I was super lucky to have little difficulty with the bosses, beating many of them on my first attempt. I got within a sliver of winning on my first attempt at O&S, and finished them on my 5th. I was surprised as how easy a lot of bosses were and by the end had realized this game was a bit overhyped in terms of difficulty so I was over prepared for most of it. I also think I got super lucky with Kalameet and beat him on my second try, and most of the DLC bosses weren’t bad thanks to my boss soul shield (forgot the name) that basically blocked every attack. Getting tips on how mechanics work and using a walkthrough at parts is really what tempers the difficulty. It wasn’t so much the enemies that pissed me off, it was accidentally killing the lady in the sewer cause I thought she was an enemy, or fuck Blighttown, try going through the Tomb of Giants without realizing the lantern needs to be in your shield arm and you need to actually hold your arm up for it to work. Although the final boss was underwhelming given I did the Solaire quests and his presence took Gwyn’s attention off me entirely, beating this game was the best I’ve felt probably ever from a game. Before this I had played Assassins Creed Odyssey and Ghost of Tsushima, which were very well received critically but I found them tedious and tiring, so I was starting to figure maybe I’m just older and games don’t resonate with me the way they used to. Once I beat Dark Souls and realized there’s a whole world of there of new games to play it felt like I had a new lease on life as a gamer.

 

DS really took me back to gaming as a kid, where I had to consult my older brother for advice, and where everything about a game’s mechanics and story wasn’t shoved in my face. I learned so much through hearsay. Even in different walkthroughs you’ll find a different way of approaching a problem. That sense of discovery, that feeling of finding a shortcut  to the main hub, the triumph of beating a monstrous boss, I finally understood why people are obsessed with this game, and how it changes your view on what a game can and should be after you’ve played one, a total paradigm shift. I also loved the minimalist story, as I never really get that sucked into them with a lot of games and am more about fun gameplay mechanics and ambiance, this game doesn’t force anything on you but if you do care the level of detail and world building is as deep as I’ve ever seen in a game.

 

So of course from here I was sucked in to the series completely and went straight in to Bloodborne. I’ve heard mixed reviews on DS2 so I figured I’d just play the best first before I’ve completely internalized all the series’ tropes and the luster wears off. As fun as Dark Souls was, Bloodborne is probably my favorite game ever now, or top 3 at worst. I made sure not to play the same as Dark Souls and did it mostly blind, though I went back through walkthroughs after I had finished certain sections to make sure I didn’t miss anything important. Thankfully I did as Ludwig’s Holy Blade was a godsend. Though the world feels more linear and less interconnected than DS, it felt less aimless to me. And whereas Dark Souls was an epic, sprawling journey, Bloodborne felt like a fun, exciting romp. The combat was wayyyy more fun, just running around slashing anything in my way was addicting in a way Dark Souls never was. And while I can see some people getting tired of the darkness and lack of variety in the environments, I loved it and everything felt cohesive to me. There was no stereotypical fire level, ice level, and even though there was a swamp level it felt very manageable and didn’t feel like a slog to get through. Bosses weren’t too bad for me, Rom was a bit frustrating till I upgraded the Tonitrus a bit, and Ebrietas and Logarius were hard, but I came back later after I had leveled up more and found the battles much more balanced. I can’t think of the last game I’ve beat and immediately wanted to play through again here, but because of all the build varieties it’s just so addicting to me. My brother also taunted me that until you’ve beaten the DLC you haven’t really beaten the game, so I had to do that. Ludwig fucking wrecked me more than any boss, to where I was literally jumping with joy when I beat him. Orphan of Kos I think I got a little lucky with, only took about 8 attempts, and I was a bit OP with my arcane build and fire gem laden Saw Spear at this point. I never want to do New Game+ (I’ll get there one day) because I want to see what the games are like with a completely different play style and stat investment, and sure enough I’m now on my third play through doing a Bloodtinge build because I just gotta try them all. I can’t recommend this game enough, once you get good the combat never gets old.

 

And since I loved these games so much I figured I’d give the old Demon’s Souls a run since I found it for dirt cheap. Unfortunately it felt pretty dated and coming from Bloodborne it was hard to unlearn some of my habits. I did enjoy it, but stuff like the inventory filling up way too quick (all for a ton of shards I never used), hit box problems, distance of spawn points, etc. were hard to ignore. I will say the level design was some of my favorite I’ve seen, I loved the Tower of Latria and Shrine of Storms arch stones. Even the god forsaken swamp level at the end was objectively cool, even if I had a hard time with it. I can’t wait to replay this in 10 years when I finally get a PS5 and do a melee build instead of a cheesy magic build.

 

So yeah, needless to say I’m in love with this series. I’m even searching out Soulslike games and am excited to try Nioh. I’d like to play Sekiro next but with my giant backlog I can’t justify spending 60 clams on a game that’ll probably be on sale a few weeks later. Currently playing Jedi Force Order and it’s a great combo of Soulslike meets Uncharted, baby’s first Dark Souls in a good way. Though I wish I had a reason to explore the world besides shiny new outfits.


I recently discovered the Dark Souls series and went to type out some thoughts and it quickly turned into an essay. Spoilered for size.

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Finished New Blood and enjoyed it highly.  Really looking forward to New Colossus sometime soon.

Played a little JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: All-Star Battle last night.  Not a great fighting game  it seems to be very unbalanced - but it's fun and channels the anime/manga nicely.  JoJo's oddball cast of characters and powers lends itself well to fighting games and the art style reminds me of the anime..

I probably need to check out the Naruto fighting games by the same studio.  Anyone have a suggestion?  CyberConnect has made a lot of them going back to the PS2 days.  Not sure where to dive in.

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I got my ass handed to me quite a bit when starting Pacman 99.  I think I got the hang of it now to at least get in the 40s for ranking but man is it a chaotic one.  I'd say moreso than Tetris 99 but oddly still manageable enough to work.  Now if I'm fighting for top spot then I'm sure that'll be a different story but it's wild to see folks there already on level 20.

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Do you want to play a native 4K version of Timesplitters 2? Do you own Homefront: Revolution? If so, well, you're in luck!

You have to be at the point in the game where you can find the Arcade cabinet. I don't know where that is, because Homefront is very, very bad.

Edited by Casey
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20 hours ago, NikoBaltimore said:

I got my ass handed to me quite a bit when starting Pacman 99.  I think I got the hang of it now to at least get in the 40s for ranking but man is it a chaotic one.  I'd say moreso than Tetris 99 but oddly still manageable enough to work.  Now if I'm fighting for top spot then I'm sure that'll be a different story but it's wild to see folks there already on level 20.

I can get in to the 30s/40s, but the times that I revert to trying to play Pac-Man are what sink me more than anything.

The explanation for what's going on continues to be vague, just like Mario 35 and Tetris 99.

Or maybe I'm old and can't keep up with the busy display.

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1 hour ago, odessasteps said:

I going to miss Mario 35, so I'm curious what's next. 

Zelda 35 since this year's the 35th anniversary as well. It just has to happen. How is the question though.

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dq9pnuamdrr61.jpg

I don't think that Act II of DQ XI could get more depressing even if it tried to.

I am enjoying my return to turn based combat RPGs.  The more I play DQ XI, the angrier I am that there was no Skies of Arcadia sequel or current gen Breath of Fire installment.  I do not count the shitty BoF mobile game for Android.

Edited by J.T.
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15 hours ago, J.T. said:

current gen Breath of Fire installment.  I do not count the shitty BoF mobile game for Android.

What are you talking about? There hasn't been a BoF game since IV.

 

I only want one again if it hits the quality of II, III, or better.

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I’d even settle for a remaster of Skies of Arcadia. Or just a way to play it on a current console. There was the original DC version (what I played), a GameCube port and...that’s it, right? Criminal. 

I’ll continue to say nothing more about DQXI, but man, what a hell of a game. 

Edited by Shane
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7 hours ago, Eivion said:

What are you talking about? There hasn't been a BoF game since IV.

I see what you are doing here.

Edited by J.T.
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You guys are really making me want to finally get to DQ XI finally. At the same time I feel I should probably finish up FFVIIR first.

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I thought DQ XI was outstanding.  Definitely think you should give it a spin.

I figured when I bought a Xbox Series X, I would never need to buy a Xbox One.  Lol, I was wrong.  Somehow, i never saw the Xbox One Minecraft limited edition (console) until tonight.  Yeah, that needs to be in my hardware collection.  I kinda want one CIB in the original box, so I'm probably going to end up spending far too much on eBay for one of these.

Edit: That was easy.  Someone put a (supposedly) new Minecraft le console on eBay overnight.  Price was respectable.  I would have been wary if it was too cheap.

Edited by Eoae
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Yeah, it's pretty tremendous.  DQ XI is at the sweet spot between seriousness and parody that most JPRGs aspire to.

I am surprised by how much the combat is kicking my ass though.  Usually you can tough your way through status ailments in most RPGs because the effects are annoying rather than life threatening, but battle can turn disastrous if an enemy starts spamming sleep, beguilement, or anti-magic / ability lock debuffs on your party and no one is successfully resisting.

I've finally hit upon a main story plot conclusion in DQ XI that didn't induce binge drinking or weeping.   So now I have to clean up my side quest queue a bit before pressing on. I could also stand to hit up the casino and do some more gambling.

Edited by J.T.
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Maybe one day we’ll live in a world where the games industry manges to put out a game or two a week.  That’s probably just crazy talk though:

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