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Video Games: Mystery Box Character Creation


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43 minutes ago, Toth said:

In a 45 minute time window. Wanna take bets whether their server comes down?

Then again, it's probably not quite as well marketed as Epics GTA5 giveaway.

Ha, that'll be fun.

Annoyingly, I picked up WD2 for a relative song last year but still haven't gotten round to playing it.

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Finished Persona 4 Golden with the true ending. That's a hell of a game, I'm really glad I finally got a chance to play it. I hope Atlus continues to port their games over to PC, I'd like to give Persona 5 a shot too.

I started up Devil May Cry 5; what a stupid, dumb, fun game that is. And even though I have that and a bunch of other games in the backlog I picked up Desperados 3 as well. I've done the tutorial and 3 missions and yeah, that's more Shadow Tactics. Fun times. Though jumping straight from Shadow Tactics, I have noticed that everyone moves faster now, which took a little getting used to. The game also seems really easy, but that's likely because I'm still in the mindset of the genre from ST. There's a lot of little graphical upgrades from ST that weren't apparent from the screenshots, but really help with making the cutscenes look better.

On the other hand, the art direction is a bit of step down so far. That may just be my personal preference though. Feudal Japan is just more interesting to look at than the Old West. Also, its a little disappointing that so far through four characters there's no new abilities from Shadow Tactics, just remixes of the existing ones. Don't mess with a winning formula I guess, but it would've been cool to have something new added to the mix.  

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21 hours ago, Fez said:

On the other hand, the art direction is a bit of step down so far. That may just be my personal preference though. Feudal Japan is just more interesting to look at than the Old West. Also, its a little disappointing that so far through four characters there's no new abilities from Shadow Tactics, just remixes of the existing ones. Don't mess with a winning formula I guess, but it would've been cool to have something new added to the mix.  

The new abilities really kick in with Isabelle, who is a nutjob and her powers completely transform how the game works.

That said, giving Oshiro and Yuki's individual powers (which were both almost OP in Shadow Tactics) to the same character felt a bit much, but I think it actually helps, because you can't use both powers simultaneously (since Hector can either trap/whistle or use his immense strength in combat, but not both together). The Oshiro/Yuki tag-team was incredibly powerful in ST, so D3 does make you have to be a bit more clever.

Spoiler

Being able to chain two characters together so what happens to one of them happens to both is brilliant. Just outrageously fun.

I just finished Mission 15, which is bananas. It involves going around a party with an absurd number of guards, mingling with guests, and there almost no handy plants on the level, so you have to leave most of the bodies in places where they could potentially be discovered.

The post-mission debrief is crazy.

I think Mission 13 or 14 was also genius:

Spoiler

The guards are all in each other's line of sight, which feels impossible to deal with, until you realise there's a train that passes through the level every 2-3 minutes and blocks line of sight, so it's great fun running around and stabbing people just on the other side of the tracks and their friend on the other side gets freaked out that someone vanishes in the space of a few seconds. Although the AI isn't fantastic on this mission, and I killed two guards with Hector's whistle by just tempting them onto the tracks ahead of the speeding train, which I think was a bit unrealistic. Fortunately the game counted it as an accident so the alarm was not raised.

Something I did like is that Desperados 3 does feel a bit better-paced, so after a massive, ridiculously tough mission they usually give you a shorter, much faster one (but not necessarily easy, just with a lot fewer objectives) immediately afterwards rather than just ramping the difficulty and length up, up and up. That said, I've taken just under 30 hours to do 15 missions with 5 left to go, whilst I think my total Shadow Tactics runthrough was around 35 hours in total, so it is a bigger game, especially later on when you get the optional missions (you go back to old maps to undertake new objectives, which is a clever way of reusing old assets to create new objectives).

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2 hours ago, Werthead said:

The new abilities really kick in with Isabelle, who is a nutjob and her powers completely transform how the game works.

That said, giving Oshiro and Yuki's individual powers (which were both almost OP in Shadow Tactics) to the same character felt a bit much, but I think it actually helps, because you can't use both powers simultaneously (since Hector can either trap/whistle or use his immense strength in combat, but not both together). The Oshiro/Yuki tag-team was incredibly powerful in ST, so D3 does make you have to be a bit more clever.

I don't think i ever used both those powers at once though in ST, so combining them like this doesn't change much for me. The trap/whistle is hideously OP, just like it was in ST though. And I'm barely using McCoy so far, same as I just about never used Takuma except for mission requirements. Combine these two things, and the result was that in mission 5 I think (defending the ranch) there was no contest between them in their kill count competition. 

So far the best change I've seen is not letting Kate have a lethal melee attack. I abused Akio's disguses so much in ST, just running around slowly killing almost everyone. On the other hand, without that, Kate doesn't seem to have much to do. I'm halfway through the bridge mission and haven't really used her at all. Or McCoy. I kinda feel like I could run the mission pretty well with just Cooper solo. Being able to shoot twice is huge, and, for the most part, his coin is all I need to mess with guards' visioncones.

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41 minutes ago, Fez said:

I don't think i ever used both those powers at once though in ST, so combining them like this doesn't change much for me. The trap/whistle is hideously OP, just like it was in ST though. And I'm barely using McCoy so far, same as I just about never used Takuma except for mission requirements. Combine these two things, and the result was that in mission 5 I think (defending the ranch) there was no contest between them in their kill count competition. 

I don't think the trap/whistle is too OP in Desperados 3 simply because so many enemies are either ponchos or longcoats who just ignore the whistle entirely. 

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So I know I'm about 9 months behind on this one at least, but bought XBox ONE X in March, which came with Fallen Order, expecting to be home more and just finished my second playthrough on Grand Jedi Master level. (Not my only diversion of course)  First time through, I thought Prauf found a lightsaber on the Jedi fighter in the scrap yard and handed it off to Cal when the Inquisitors showed up.  (Spoiler for people who haven't played the first ten minutes, also Darth Vader is totally coming onboard Leia's consular ship.)   

But playing through NG+ to achievement grind and try the highest level, Cal totally had the lightsaber the whole time, both from the cutscenes and from the fact that all the parts are labeled as his master's.  So was it just the will of the Force that all that shit happened to go down on Take Your Lightsaber to Work Day, or else where was Cal smuggling that thing for so many years?  Overall, I think they did a good job with the story but having that plot hole early did rankle.

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On 7/5/2020 at 6:06 AM, Ran said:

 

You should try the gyro control for pitch and strafe. With a bit of practice it gets very intuitive.

You shouldn't really need to press the pads, though, but swiping is another thing that takes getting used to.

Probably F-Zero on the Nintendo systems, or WipEout. And both of those owed a nod to Atari's S.T.U.N Runner

 

I gave it a go but it isn't much good. I'm doing significantly better with just the keyboard directional arrows. Its possible that a stick wouldn't be better for me, but aside from the two extra buttons at the battery area, the steam controller just feels worse in every way.

Anyway, after playing a few rounds with all the curves on the track, I can't see straight lines anymore. Getting very slightly light headed typing this out in the message box. 

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57 minutes ago, mcbigski said:

So I know I'm about 9 months behind on this one at least, but bought XBox ONE X in March, which came with Fallen Order, expecting to be home more and just finished my second playthrough on Grand Jedi Master level. (Not my only diversion of course)  First time through, I thought Prauf found a lightsaber on the Jedi fighter in the scrap yard and handed it off to Cal when the Inquisitors showed up.  (Spoiler for people who haven't played the first ten minutes, also Darth Vader is totally coming onboard Leia's consular ship.)   

But playing through NG+ to achievement grind and try the highest level, Cal totally had the lightsaber the whole time, both from the cutscenes and from the fact that all the parts are labeled as his master's.  So was it just the will of the Force that all that shit happened to go down on Take Your Lightsaber to Work Day, or else where was Cal smuggling that thing for so many years?  Overall, I think they did a good job with the story but having that plot hole early did rankle.

He wasn't in prison or something. Keeping a lightsaber on your person isn't something I would put past a Jedi. Even an apprentice. When Luke was playing around with Anakin's in the Falcon Han barely blinked.

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6 hours ago, Fez said:

I don't think i ever used both those powers at once though in ST, so combining them like this doesn't change much for me. The trap/whistle is hideously OP, just like it was in ST though. And I'm barely using McCoy so far, same as I just about never used Takuma except for mission requirements. Combine these two things, and the result was that in mission 5 I think (defending the ranch) there was no contest between them in their kill count competition. 

So far the best change I've seen is not letting Kate have a lethal melee attack. I abused Akio's disguses so much in ST, just running around slowly killing almost everyone. On the other hand, without that, Kate doesn't seem to have much to do. I'm halfway through the bridge mission and haven't really used her at all. Or McCoy. I kinda feel like I could run the mission pretty well with just Cooper solo. Being able to shoot twice is huge, and, for the most part, his coin is all I need to mess with guards' visioncones.

There's definitely more circumstances in D3 where McCoy's sniper ability comes in handy. In fact, D3's generally stronger level design is making me want to replay ST because it's given me a lot more ideas for using under-used abilities in that game.

Kate does have a really powerful ability:

Spoiler

Being able to lure guards away from their posts into a waiting bear trap, thrown knife or McCoy's sniper range is huge, and the fact she can distract Ponchos with her speech ability (although not lure them) is very handy as well. 

Quote

I don't think the trap/whistle is too OP in Desperados 3 simply because so many enemies are either ponchos or longcoats who just ignore the whistle entirely. 

Yeah, that can get a little much. The party level climaxes with an area where there are 3 longcoats, all in each other's line of sight, which is a total nightmare to deal with.

Also, I was wrong about the longevity of the game. There are only 16 missions, not 20, but the final mission is insane. It makes the whole game about as long as Shadow Tactics, longer with the voluntary challenge missions.

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I've finished Jedi Fallen Order. I liked the story and the characters. Visually the game looks gorgeous. A lot of fun gameplay, but the combat was stupid difficult. Of course, I played it on PC, and this game simply isn't good with mouse+keyboard. I had to reduce the game difficulty to just story mode to enjoy it. I don't think the game has much replayability value. The loot you find is just cosmetics. Whereas getting necessary items such as climbing claws was integrated well in the narrative, all the other loot often took me out of it. Hey look, I can change the ship's paint job... while I'm in a cave. 

 

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2 hours ago, Corvinus85 said:

I've finished Jedi Fallen Order. I liked the story and the characters. Visually the game looks gorgeous. A lot of fun gameplay, but the combat was stupid difficult. Of course, I played it on PC, and this game simply isn't good with mouse+keyboard. I had to reduce the game difficulty to just story mode to enjoy it. I don't think the game has much replayability value. The loot you find is just cosmetics. Whereas getting necessary items such as climbing claws was integrated well in the narrative, all the other loot often took me out of it. Hey look, I can change the ship's paint job... while I'm in a cave. 

 

One of my favorite games to come out in the last year.  I actually really enjoyed the combat since it was so similar to Sekiro.  It was a little more clunky, but getting the timing down for parries wasn't too bad.  I also loved that blocking also worked for your back.  My one complaint is that all the bosses were really samey.  I played through it on normal and then again on hard and ended up getting a platinum trophy on it.

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On 7/8/2020 at 6:35 AM, Werthead said:

There's definitely more circumstances in D3 where McCoy's sniper ability comes in handy. In fact, D3's generally stronger level design is making me want to replay ST because it's given me a lot more ideas for using under-used abilities in that game.

Kate does have a really powerful ability:

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Being able to lure guards away from their posts into a waiting bear trap, thrown knife or McCoy's sniper range is huge, and the fact she can distract Ponchos with her speech ability (although not lure them) is very handy as well. 

Yeah, that can get a little much. The party level climaxes with an area where there are 3 longcoats, all in each other's line of sight, which is a total nightmare to deal with.

Also, I was wrong about the longevity of the game. There are only 16 missions, not 20, but the final mission is insane. It makes the whole game about as long as Shadow Tactics, longer with the voluntary challenge missions.

It seems like Kate's conversation/distract ability is permanent, which is a huge improvement over Akio. She could distract straw-hats too, but she had the issue that after enough time (I think it was a minute), guards would lose interest in talking with her. Which can be issue if you haven't been able to move all the bodies yet. The lure seems like it could be powerful, though I didn't use it in the bridge mission besides the one time near the start when it was introduced. I did end up using McCoy's bag a lot though, so I guess I've found his use. Also, do guards not see him dragging bodies? That's what it seemed like to me. It would make sense, since he's crouching when dragging, but that wasn't the way it worked in ST.

ETA: I've been watching this (not going past where I am in the game), and its just mind blowing:

 

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1 hour ago, Fez said:

It seems like Kate's conversation/distract ability is permanent, which is a huge improvement over Akio. She could distract straw-hats too, but she had the issue that after enough time (I think it was a minute), guards would lose interest in talking with her. Which can be issue if you haven't been able to move all the bodies yet. The lure seems like it could be powerful, though I didn't use it in the bridge mission besides the one time near the start when it was introduced. I did end up using McCoy's bag a lot though, so I guess I've found his use. Also, do guards not see him dragging bodies? That's what it seemed like to me. It would make sense, since he's crouching when dragging, but that wasn't the way it worked in ST.

ETA: I've been watching this (not going past where I am in the game), and its just mind blowing:

 

Kate and McCoy both drag bodies whilst crouching, which is something I didn't fully appreciate until the last level (which it's not very useful), so they can go through outer view cones without a problem.

The speedrun is insane, although they mention the speedrunner (who is also a beta tester, so has been playing the game for the better part of a year) reporting that he took dozens to hundreds of attempts on each mission to get it down that pat. Most people just haven't had the time yet.

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Beat LoU2 over a week ago but never got around to posting my thoughts on here.

Joel's death gutted me. Nice smoke and mirrors with the trailers. I thought the pacing between Ellie/Dina and then Joel/Tommy/Abby was the best moments in the game. Well, that was 2 hours into the game and then gone. I don't think any other sequences in the game matched the intensity there. Perhaps when Abby was back outside of the theater, but that was only because I felt like I was racing back to Ellie, and wanted to know Tommy's fate (how the fuck did he survive btw?)

I certainly understand Joel's death. I had a strong feeling after Abby killed him that some of those wolves had firefly affiliations. Seemed pretty clear. Who else would want to kill him? Sure, as Ellie said, he's crossed many people in his past, but who would travel across the country from Boston to find him? Clearly Firefly stuff.

I hated Abby. Absolutely hated her. The hate decreased through each day when playing her character, I hate to admit. They paint her as a complete villain in the opening, but when you play as her you can see she's no different than Ellie or Joel. Liked, respected, caring, etc... She had a crew of friends that meant something to her. I can get behind that. I can understand why she did what she did. No different than what Ellie or Joel would do, or have done. Hard to understand the passion behind Lev/Yara. That seemed contrived. They saved her, sure, but so did Joel :smoking:. I get it, she had a vendetta against him, but the Seraphites are the enemy faction to WLF. Whatever. On a side note, Abby's bomber jacket outfit was her best, IMO.

The game was long as fuck. And I wouldn't normally complain about more content for something I love, but when the game went to California, I was thinking, Uh, this isn't gonna be stretched into LoU3? I think by that point I was ready for some resolution. The game was mentally grueling at times for me, just depressing kinda. It had none of those warm moments like the first game had. Those moments like chatting with Henry and Sam while walking through the suburbs after the sewer, Joel talking to Ellie about football and college, the giraffe, etc... Those small moments of longing, hope, and nostalgia are what made the game shine for me. None of that here, and I get it. Druckmann said ways back that this would be a game about hate where 1 was a game about love. You can feel that throughout. 

In regards to the story, overall I enjoyed, didn't love it. Had fun plying the game, just was disappointed with Joel going down a couple hours in. I was looking forward to the dialogue between he and Ellie, and seeing what's transpired over the years. You get that through flashbacks, and I did enjoy piecing the story together through them, but that only holds so much weight. For me, TLoU is 50% Joel and 50% Ellie. Lost 50% of that two hours into a 25-30 hour playthrough. Not good for me. At least they gave us an Ellie/Joel bloater fight for old time sake. 

In regards to gameplay/visuals/acting/music, great stuff as expected. Fights were clearly more difficult this time through. The melee stuff was a bitch at times. I played on Hard and there were some seriously trying moments/encounters. That fucker Boris worked my ass over a couple times before I killed him. Stalkers in general were fucking rough enemies to battle. There were two moments that had me ready to lower the difficulty. When you're first introduced to the dogs accompanying WLF soldiers in the suburbs before meeting up with Jesse was one. Took me like twenty tries to get out of there alive. The other was the Rat King Hospital Super Bloater. Fuck that thing. Absolutely frightening game at times. Still has that going for it. I actually enjoyed playing as Abby in combat more than Ellie. Loved the over/under shotty and the hunting pistol. Especially paired with the incendiary rounds. I liked her skill tree more, too.

Welp, that's all I got. I think this game makes me more sad than anything lol... Powerful game, but sad. For me at least. Didn't enjoy it as much as the first and there's no way I'll go back and play it as many times as I had the first one (played over ten different times). I'll probably give it some time to breathe and jump onto new game plus next month and get all the collectibles, conversations, skills, etc. The platinum trophy seems pretty obtainable since you don't have to beat the game at the highest difficulty to get all the trophies. I like that they did that. I'll play the next one on Normal so it doesn't take as long. I scavenge way too much and it takes me longer. The game certainly sets up for a third installment. Who knows what the hell they do with that. I'm happy Ellie lived. I was happy for Abby and Lev, too.

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I've gotten to Isabelle in Desperados 3; and that's what I'm talking about in terms of wanting to see changes in the character skills from Shadow Tactics. Fun times.

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Far Cry 6 announced, fearing Giancarlo Esposito as the villain. It sounds like it's going back to the Far Cry 3/4 paradigm of being set in a country that's rebelling against a dictator. Again.

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It would be nice if they could make it slightly more believable* by putting it on a little island somewhere, rather than doing the whole batshit insane hillbillys-with-nukes thing again.

Probably the biggest problem games have right now is their budgets. The temptation for almost every AAA title in the future to be a lobotomised Vin-Dieselesque murdergrunter is going to be overpowering.

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I finished The Outer Wilds. It's a beautiful and unique game; kind of a mix of Metroid Prime, No Man's Sky, and Majora's Mask. There are so many cool and awe-inspiring moments in the game stemming from exploration and discovery, so it's hard to write about it without giving it away - but there are so many memorable moments.

That said, it can be a very frustrating game; the combination of wonky controls, platforming, and one-mistake-you-have-to-restart-now can get old. And the final sequence of the game left a pretty bad taste in my mouth, I haven't felt this frustrated with a video game since Capra Demon in Dark Souls 1. That said, if you can tolerate these flaws and get lost in exploring, acquiring knowledge and setting your own goals, it's definitely worth playing.

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On 7/10/2020 at 7:11 PM, Soylent Brown said:

It would be nice if they could make it slightly more believable* by putting it on a little island somewhere, rather than doing the whole batshit insane hillbillys-with-nukes thing again.

Probably the biggest problem games have right now is their budgets. The temptation for almost every AAA title in the future to be a lobotomised Vin-Dieselesque murdergrunter is going to be overpowering.

It is set on an island called Yara.

It's a shame the Just Cause series isn't bigger than it is, as it does everything that Far Cry tries to do and does it far better. Better combat, more vehicles and ways of getting around and it really leans into the lunacy and silliness of the concepts, whilst the Far Cry games seem to be becoming more po-faced and faux-serious with each game. Far Cry 5 was beautiful but mind-bogglingly stupid, with the most ineptly-executed ending to a video game since at least Mass Effect 3.

Some rumours that Far Cry 6 might be set back in time, maybe in the 1970s or 1980s. That would save them having to address the ending of Far Cry 5 (the games are, at least ostensibly, all set in the same universe and FC5's ending was pretty much a massive gamechanger for the entire setting), at least more than the stand-alone expansion thing already did.

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