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Video Games- Game of the Year


Fez

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11 hours ago, Werthead said:

I got that when it was free on Epic last year. Still not got round to playing it.

It's such a wildly engrossing game, with interesting side missions, and main-plot missions and no real bugs that I could spot (aside from one at the very end of the game that has since been patched from what I understand). I've sunk 127 hours into the game and I've still not completed all of the DLCs. 

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5 hours ago, IlyaP said:

It's such a wildly engrossing game, with interesting side missions, and main-plot missions and no real bugs that I could spot (aside from one at the very end of the game that has since been patched from what I understand). I've sunk 127 hours into the game and I've still not completed all of the DLCs. 

It feels very immersive but also ridiculously difficult. I'm not sure I like the combat. Now I'm trying to learn how to ride a horse, with Cumans chasing me, and I keep dying. 

That early part of the game, in order to get the items requested, I had to sell my scarf to actually have enough money, and then the scarf magically re-appeared during the attack on the town.

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15 hours ago, Fez said:

I'm not sure about that. I don't think crunch makes games better or worse, it just gets them done faster. Naughty Dogs was crunching terribly on The Last of Us Part II, and Rockstar crunched on Red Dead Redemption 2.

Crunch is bad for what it does to the employees, but I don't think it makes the games themselves buggier.

I haven't played LoU2, but RDR2 had a plethora of small problems on console and an absolute shit-ton of problems on PC.

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Years ago - id Software had a release motto of "when it's done".

It strikes me as the sanest approach there is. Why more companies don't adopt this I just don't know.

 

Bethesda Game Studios have this process in place after Skyrim launched with shitloads of bugs, some of which they managed to make worse through patches (like the backwards dragons). For Fallout 4 and 76, they only announced the game existed 4 months from release, when the games were effectively 100% complete and they were certain they could hit the dates. Before that, if any problems came up that caused them to delay the game, it was all handled internally and there was no drama over it and no need for arduous crunch. Skyrim had its release date announced much earlier and they did have to scramble to hit that date and made mistakes in the process.

It's reportedly the reason Bethesda have held onto so many staff members for so long when other companies churn through staff at a high rate (CDPR lost a ton of their best developers after The Witcher 3 because so many were pissed off by the crunch on that game, although they managed to lure a few back for CP77), because they have a strong and efficient workload pipeline in place and they don't need that level of crunch. That's why FO4 launched in a very strong state bug-wise compared to pretty much every single Bethesda game before that (though it still had some), and FO76's problems were more on the server side because they couldn't stress-test everything until the game was actually released.

With Starfield and Elder Scrolls VI (reportedly called Redfall), Bethesda have announced they exist but absolutely nothing more about them until they're basically done and ready to come out.

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25 minutes ago, Werthead said:

. That's why FO4 launched in a very strong state bug-wise compared to pretty much every single Bethesda game before that (though it still had some),

No way. FO4 was a mess at launch, especially on PS4. It was almost in worse shape than Cyberpunk is on the console.

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38 minutes ago, Fez said:

No way. FO4 was a mess at launch, especially on PS4. It was almost in worse shape than Cyberpunk is on the console.

I didn't say it was totally bug-free, but it was certainly less buggy than Fallout 3 & New Vegas, and Skyrim (maybe Oblivion, although I didn't have my ear to the ground on how that performed on the 360). It certainly didn't have the slowly creeping bugs that tended to accumulate over time as the saved games got bigger, which was a key problem on the 360-era Bethesda games.

Weirdly Fallout 4 has gotten buggier as time has gone on on PC, because Bethesda haven't gone back to address issues that have cropped up with regards as to how it interacts with newer graphics card. My last replay was fun, but blighted by character's heads vanishing during cut scene conversations.

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3 hours ago, Werthead said:

I didn't say it was totally bug-free, but it was certainly less buggy than Fallout 3 & New Vegas, and Skyrim (maybe Oblivion, although I didn't have my ear to the ground on how that performed on the 360). It certainly didn't have the slowly creeping bugs that tended to accumulate over time as the saved games got bigger, which was a key problem on the 360-era Bethesda games.

Weirdly Fallout 4 has gotten buggier as time has gone on on PC, because Bethesda haven't gone back to address issues that have cropped up with regards as to how it interacts with newer graphics card. My last replay was fun, but blighted by character's heads vanishing during cut scene conversations.

The best thing about Fallout 76 is that they decoupled physics and FPS. Once people removed the FPS cap and zoomed around like crazy in PVP they had to patch it and they did it rather quickly. I think they patched a lot of engine problems they never gave a shit about in Skyrim and Fallout 4 in Fallout 76. Hopefully they keep the bug fixing people for Elder Scrolls 6.

Edit: The worst things was that people founds ways to ignore the inventory cap and that multiple item duplicating exploits existed. That was really bad for the servers as were the nuke zones. I think the servers were stable for about a month and it went downhill for quite some time after that.

I hope they keep real-time VATS for Fallout 5 that worked really well imo at least on PC.

 

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1 hour ago, Luzifer's right hand said:

The best thing about Fallout 76 is that they decoupled physics and FPS. Once people removed the FPS cap and zoomed around like crazy in PVP they had to patch it and they did it rather quickly. I think they patched a lot of engine problems they never gave a shit about in Skyrim and Fallout 4 in Fallout 76. Hopefully they keep the bug fixing people for Elder Scrolls 6.

Edit: The worst things was that people founds ways to ignore the inventory cap and that multiple item duplicating exploits existed. That was really bad for the servers as were the nuke zones. I think the servers were stable for about a month and it went downhill for quite some time after that.

I hope they keep real-time VATS for Fallout 5 that worked really well imo at least on PC.

 

Yeah, the engine improvements in FO76 versus FO4 and earlier are quite impressive. It's actually starting to vaguely feel like a more modern engine, with almost no interior/exterior transitions and much better lighting and physics integration. It'd be interesting to see them upconvert FO4 to the 76 engine for a next-gen version of the game.

I think a lot of people like the time-slowing effects of VATS too much for it to become a permanent thing. Real-time VATS I think was only a thing because you can't slow down time or pause in a multiplayer game, it'll be back to slow-mo for Fallout 5 (although given how far away that likely is if they don't use another studio, who knows by then).

We also have Starfield to worry about before Elder Scrolls VI.

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3 minutes ago, Werthead said:

I think a lot of people like the time-slowing effects of VATS too much for it to become a permanent thing. Real-time VATS I think was only a thing because you can't slow down time or pause in a multiplayer game, it'll be back to slow-mo for Fallout 5 (although given how far away that likely is if they don't use another studio, who knows by then).

We also have Starfield to worry about before Elder Scrolls VI.

Yeah I did not mind the original VATS the real times VATS just played really smooth with mouse and keyboard. Original VATS is also great for people with accessibility issues afaik that can't really play normal shooter gameplay well.

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8 hours ago, Corvinus85 said:

It feels very immersive but also ridiculously difficult. I'm not sure I like the combat. Now I'm trying to learn how to ride a horse, with Cumans chasing me, and I keep dying. 

That early part of the game, in order to get the items requested, I had to sell my scarf to actually have enough money, and then the scarf magically re-appeared during the attack on the town.

A few mods released since the game's launch have improved the combat, difficulty levels, and fixed strange design choices like removing the mouse reticle when using the bow. Oh, and of course they fixed the *completely* bewildering save game system and let players save wherever they like. 

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Finished Cyberpunk, and I'm feeling a bit of void in terms of what to play next. I have the games still I was playing before it came out, and they're fine. But I realized I don't have much new to look forward to. I took a look at the 2021 release calendar, and right now its really looking pretty barren in terms of story-driven AAA games; or even AAA games at all that I like. 

Maybe if the next God of War actually gets a 2021 release date (I doubt it), that plus the next Horizon game would be enough for me to get a PS5. But Horizon alone isn't enough; and I don't see any other big PS5 2021 exclusives other than Ratchet and Clank (not for me) and Deathloop (still not sure of the scale of this). And as for everything else, Hitman 3 should be good. I doubt Far Cry 6 will be good. I'm very leery of V:TMB2 at this point. I'd be surprised if Dying Light 2 releases in the year. Not sure what to think Halo: Infinite. Chorvs may be good, but I'm not clear if its AAA. And I don't think any other AAA games have even been announced, other than licensed stuff like the Harry Potter game and the next Batman game, neither of which I care about.

Maybe Outriders will be really good. And over on Switch I'll pick up Shin Megami Tensei V, which will eat up the hours I'm sur.

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Darkest Dungeon is today's free Epic Game, a very worthwhile purchase for nowt.

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Maybe if the next God of War actually gets a 2021 release date (I doubt it), that plus the next Horizon game would be enough for me to get a PS5. But Horizon alone isn't enough; and I don't see any other big PS5 2021 exclusives other than Ratchet and Clank (not for me) and Deathloop (still not sure of the scale of this). And as for everything else, Hitman 3 should be good. I doubt Far Cry 6 will be good. I'm very leery of V:TMB2 at this point. I'd be surprised if Dying Light 2 releases in the year. Not sure what to think Halo: Infinite. Chorvs may be good, but I'm not clear if its AAA. And I don't think any other AAA games have even been announced, other than licensed stuff like the Harry Potter game and the next Batman game, neither of which I care about.

 

2020 was surprisingly busy with games I was actually interested in, and I'm glad that 2021 is fairy low-key in them so far as I need time to catch up on my backlog.

The only 2021 games that are really on my horizon at this stage are Starfield (Bethesda basically said last year that we'd get more news on the game in 2021, which makes a 2021 release more likely); the PC port of Final Fantasy VII RemakeVampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2Disco Elysium: The Final CutBaldur's Gate III, Dark Alliance and Horizon Forbidden West (if it comes out on PC as well, which seems unlikely, but I also don't think we'll be waiting three years for the port).

STALKER 2Evil Genius 2King's Bounty 2Gotham KnightsGhostwire: TokyoEvil WestHumankind, Deathloop and Blood Bowl 3 are all in the "promising, let's see how they review" category.

There's also a few 2020 releases I wasn't willing to shell out full price for but will get as soon as they drop to a decent level, hopefully next year: Empire of SinIron Harvest and a couple of others.

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1 hour ago, Werthead said:

Darkest Dungeon is today's free Epic Game, a very worthwhile purchase for nowt.

2020 was surprisingly busy with games I was actually interested in, and I'm glad that 2021 is fairy low-key in them so far as I need time to catch up on my backlog.

The only 2021 games that are really on my horizon at this stage are Starfield (Bethesda basically said last year that we'd get more news on the game in 2021, which makes a 2021 release more likely); the PC port of Final Fantasy VII RemakeVampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2Disco Elysium: The Final CutBaldur's Gate III, Dark Alliance and Horizon Forbidden West (if it comes out on PC as well, which seems unlikely, but I also don't think we'll be waiting three years for the port).

STALKER 2Evil Genius 2King's Bounty 2Gotham KnightsGhostwire: TokyoEvil WestHumankind, Deathloop and Blood Bowl 3 are all in the "promising, let's see how they review" category.

There's also a few 2020 releases I wasn't willing to shell out full price for but will get as soon as they drop to a decent level, hopefully next year: Empire of SinIron Harvest and a couple of others.

For me, most of the games you list fall into the categories of either: 1) I don't think this is actually coming out in 2021 (e.g. Baldur's Gate 3), 2) I don't think this will be good/may be good but isn't for me (e.g. Gotham Knights), or 3) I don't this is coming out in 2021 or will be good (e.g. Vampire: The Masquerade- Bloodlines 2).

I do have a very cautious eye on King's Bounty 2 and Ghostwire: Tokyo, like you. And I'll certainly replay Disco Elysium when the final cut comes out. But I don't see much else.

And there are actually a bunch of announced games I'm looking forward to, but all of them are 2022 at the earliest: like Oblivion's next game. It kinda feels like no developers were actually ready yet for a new hardware generation. Not sure if it's just from COVID or what.

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3 hours ago, Fez said:

And there are actually a bunch of announced games I'm looking forward to, but all of them are 2022 at the earliest: like Oblivion's next game. It kinda feels like no developers were actually ready yet for a new hardware generation. Not sure if it's just from COVID or what.

COVID may have delayed games a bit but not 12-18 months (it does make you wonder if CP77 would have been in a better state if it hadn't been for COVID which slowed development down).

I think the simple problem is that modern video game development, especially in AAA, is wildly hard to predict and getting a large number of games ready for such a specific launch window is impossible when the entire development process of a decent modern AAA game is taking 5+ years.

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Nice thing about being a fan of Paradox grand strategies us that I'll never run out of games to play. The only ones I can claim to have "beaten" (seen most of major content and achieved most common goals) are Crusader Kings 2 and Victoria 2. And I still have some fun Steam achievements I could choose to chase in CK2 if I ever get the itch.

I've never even played Stellaris, and I've only sampled CK3 (I'll wait until they add some features I miss in the inevitable expansions). And if I ever get bored of the vanilla games, they each have several major mods that are basically entirely different games.

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21 minutes ago, Gorn said:

Nice thing about being a fan of Paradox grand strategies us that I'll never run out of games to play. The only ones I can claim to have "beaten" (seen most of major content and achieved most common goals) are Crusader Kings 2 and Victoria 2. And I still have some fun Steam achievements I could choose to chase in CK2 if I ever get the itch.

I've never even played Stellaris, and I've only sampled CK3 (I'll wait until they add some features I miss in the inevitable expansions). And if I ever get bored of the vanilla games, they each have several major mods that are basically entirely different games.

I've barely touched CK3. There's a decent mod for playing the Romans, but 2 has way better start options.

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I appears my xbox one never recovered from trying to run Cyberpunk. I went to turn it on today and it beeps on and then immediately shuts off.

Apparently I can try blowing hot air into it with a heat gun or hair dryer but that seems like a temporary fix at best. Gonna try a friends power brick first on the off chance the system is still fine. 

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2 hours ago, Gorn said:

Nice thing about being a fan of Paradox grand strategies us that I'll never run out of games to play. The only ones I can claim to have "beaten" (seen most of major content and achieved most common goals) are Crusader Kings 2 and Victoria 2. And I still have some fun Steam achievements I could choose to chase in CK2 if I ever get the itch.

I've never even played Stellaris, and I've only sampled CK3 (I'll wait until they add some features I miss in the inevitable expansions). And if I ever get bored of the vanilla games, they each have several major mods that are basically entirely different games.

What features are you waiting for in CK3? I didn’t play 2 very much so no idea what I’m missing, but 3 is just so massive with almost infinite replay ability I’m not sure what DLCs will add.

 

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For those watching for new games that're due to arrive in 2021, there's the wildly undermarketed Black Geyser: Couriers of Darkness, a Baldur's Gate-inspired isometric RPG. I've been watching this game for some time and want to shake the shoulders of their marketing department and ask them what they're doing, because it's just not enough. For those not in the know: "Black Geyser is an isometric, party-based, real-time with pause RPG in a world infested by greed and envy. Coming to PC, Mac & Linux on GOG and Steam".

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