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1 hour ago, Werthead said:

Apparently, the PC port of Days Gone has set a new standard with its graphics menu, which allows for real-time dynamic adjustment of details and settings on the fly, showing you the precise frame rate gains and losses. It's extremely impressive and should remove a lot of the faff where you spend three hours trying to work out why you're getting frame rate tanks and then discover it's down to having ticked same-space ambulent occluded godray particle triangles without realising it.

Oh that's good. I wish all games would do this.

 

1 hour ago, Werthead said:

I'd say Mass Effect 2 has better characters but Mass Effect 1 has a better, more epic plot. ME2's depiction of character interrelationships is really impressive and powerful (ME3, in its better moments, builds on that) but it's main storyline is pretty much bollocks.

What takes away from ME2 is that its overall storyline and most of the characters pretty much fail to be of any value whatsoever in ME3, making the entire game feel like a side-quest in and of itself (the Arrival DLC has way more importance to the overall storyline than the full game itself). ay.

Yeah, I like ME2, but the plot itself is actually just a side-quest, or a mere chapter of what should be the plot of the game, and not the entire plot. Kind of like Deus Ex Mankind Divided: it's just part of the whole story, has no satisfying end considering what you know or guess is at stakes. Though ME2 is more developed with better NPCs / sidekicks.

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Another issue with ME2's main plot is that it takes away valuable space. ME2s story should have been spent trying to find a way to stop the Reapers. Shepard did not need to suceed in that, but we could have been spared the sudden Catalyst ass pull in ME3. Likewise we could have actually learned something, even if it was just the vaguest of hints, about the Reapers' history and their possibly motivation.

Instead we basically got inconsequential filler made even worse by the final decision in ME2 not mattering at all.

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Yeah. Character-wise, side-quests wise (even considering the key quest as a side-quest), it was really good. But the thing is, the major plot should have been featured in a major DLC with some kind of nearly standalone plot - like Shivering Isles or Blood and Wine -, and not an entire game, considering the grand scheme of things. As said, the main part of ME2 that actually ties in between ME1 and ME2 is Arrival.

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ME1 and ME2 should have swapped plots.

I.e. first game, human colonies are disappearing. You're sent out as a special investigator to find out why. You meet and collect allies, put hints together, and eventually go through the Omega relay and confront the collectors. The reapers are not fully revealed at this stage, but hints are dropped, and the game ends with the knowledge that something bigger was behind the collectors. Also, obviously drop the whole resurrection thing. But otherwise, the game plays out more or less the same. Cerberus can still be a thing. Maybe they're still legit at this stage and only reveal their nefariousness at the end, so you break away from them for the next game.

Second game, you start with another human colony under attack. The collectors right? But you beat them last game. Also, the whole thing with being under consideration for Spectre is still there, based on what your character did in game one. Saren shows up, and the plot more or less plays out the same way as the original ME1.

Obviously you'd need to play around with certain character introductions a bit, and certain character arcs. But I think the overall structure hangs together this way.

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1 hour ago, Liffguard said:

ME1 and ME2 should have swapped plots.

I.e. first game, human colonies are disappearing. You're sent out as a special investigator to find out why. You meet and collect allies, put hints together, and eventually go through the Omega relay and confront the collectors. The reapers are not fully revealed at this stage, but hints are dropped, and the game ends with the knowledge that something bigger was behind the collectors. Also, obviously drop the whole resurrection thing. But otherwise, the game plays out more or less the same. Cerberus can still be a thing. Maybe they're still legit at this stage and only reveal their nefariousness at the end, so you break away from them for the next game.

Second game, you start with another human colony under attack. The collectors right? But you beat them last game. Also, the whole thing with being under consideration for Spectre is still there, based on what your character did in game one. Saren shows up, and the plot more or less plays out the same way as the original ME1.

Obviously you'd need to play around with certain character introductions a bit, and certain character arcs. But I think the overall structure hangs together this way.

I think that's workable, but I think it does work better to have more forewarning of the Reapers. Shepard warns everyone about the Reapers and they're like whatever, then Sovereign shows up and that seems to scare everyone into making some preparations for the Reapers' return. There's what, two or three years between ME1 and ME3? That makes everyone having more ships and mobilising forces in ME3 more plausible than just the six months grace they gain by blowing the relay in Arrival, inbetween ME2 and 3.

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I like the setting and plot of Mass Effect well enough but the gameplay is kinda meh. Part of that may be because my right bumper is broken on my xbox controller so I can't use abilities :laugh: I actually restarted a couple missions in to change from a shotgun/ability guy to a soldier. Shotguns seems to suck in this game. 

I guess I'll stick with it, I just wasn't sure about continuing for the story alone when I know the ending is universally hated

 

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I'd argue that the overall sense that ME2 was a sidequest of little relevance is more a problem with ME3 rather than ME2 itself - the level of character building and general investment you get into all the characters and the sorta found family vibe they build is great and the shame is that ME3 wasted so much of it in favour of another reset.

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Posted (edited)

Completed the Heavy Metal story arc in BattleTech. The final mission where the Bounty Hunter and Natasha Kerensky slug it out with you caught in the crossfire was absolutely brutal, but I managed to complete the mission by inflicting serious damage on Kerensky and then beating a hasty retreat from the initial engagement (taking some hits on the way but nothing serious) before the Bounty Hunter arrives and engages Kerensky. The only problem there is that I'd softened up Kerensky's lance too heavily so they started getting their arses handed to them, so I had to sidle back into they fray and weaken the Bounty Hunter's lance with missile bombardments and gauss sniper shots from extreme range.

The best bit was getting them down to one of Kerensky's mechs and two of the Bounty Hunter's, and then flattening all three with an artillery salvo from the Bullshark, which is officially the most overpowered mech in the game. Not only can it just tactically nuke parts of the battlefield (if only twice per mission) for mass area-of-effect damage, it's standard weaponry can tear Assaults apart with a single core shot. It took down an Atlas from maximum health from the front with a Precision Shot and killed an Annihilator from almost maximum health with an unguided alpha strike to the front armour (and an Annihilator is no slouch on the armour department). Ridiculous.

That's about it for the game. I'm going to do the Steiner Alliance flashpoint and maybe the Canopus one, but I don't think I can be bothered grinding rep to open up the Kurita and Calderon ones.

2 hours ago, Poobah said:

I'd argue that the overall sense that ME2 was a sidequest of little relevance is more a problem with ME3 rather than ME2 itself - the level of character building and general investment you get into all the characters and the sorta found family vibe they build is great and the shame is that ME3 wasted so much of it in favour of another reset.

Yeah, the key weakness is that you start Mass Effect 3 and go through the game and you get, at best, the ME2 characters showing up briefly in cameo missions or not even that and you just bump into them for a 5-minute conversation on the Citadel and then they vanish again. Contrast Miranda being a massive character in ME2, maybe the second or third most important character in the game, and she's in ME3 for a bare handful of scenes.

Mass Effect 2 had the same issue vis a vis ME1, but it was justified more in the plot (you're on the lowdown and trying to avoid old acquaintances), and also wasn't so much of a problem because most of the ME1 characters were forgettable apart from Joker, Garrus, Tali and Liara (maybe Anderson), who are the characters who show up in ME2 anyway (admittedly not until the DLC with Liara). The only really major absence from ME1 was Wrex (Shepard) Wrex (Shepard).

Dragon Age has the same issue but you are bouncing backwards and forwards across a huge continent with years falling between each game, so it makes more sense there.

Edited by Werthead
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Well I'm 14 hours into Baldur's Gate and it's feeling like maybe this'll finally be the run. Jury's still out of course, I could easily lose interest; I'm not even at the Nashkal Mines yet. But I've done an awful lot of roaming around and have hit level 4. I'm playing a magic user for the first time, a Dragon Disciple sorcerer, and I think that helps. I'd usually play some sort of fighter usually, and fighters just have so little to do at lower levels (at least back in 2nd edition; I've been DMing a tabletop in 5th edition and it seems better).

I'd forgotten just how annoying the reputation system in the game is though; at least if you're trying to have any evil party members. It just doesn't make sense either. Kaigan may be evil alignment, but if I'm showering him with cool gear and the party is earning tons of gold, why would he care if I help out a few random people? But so far I've managed to keep my reputation to 12, and am balancing having Khalid, Jahiera, and Imoen on one side and Kaigan and Viconia on the other. I did accidentally kill an NPC at one point, which helped drop my rep; but as a chaotic neutral I don't feel too bad about it.

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Posted (edited)

BattleTech's first Steiner Flashpoint: limits you to 4 Medium mechs, max tonnage 50t, and throws at you 12 enemy mechs, a mixture of 1 Assault, 4 Heavies and 7 Mediums. This makes the mission almost impossible, unless you can smoke out the single Assault you need to take down (and taking down even 1 Assault with 4 Mediums whilst 11 other mechs are shooting at you is...hard).

Edited by Werthead
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4 minutes ago, Werthead said:

BattleTech's first Steiner Flashpoint: limits you to 4 Medium mechs, max tonnage 50t, and throws at you 12 enemy mechs, a mixture of 1 Assault, 4 Heavies and 7 Mediums. This makes the mission almost impossible, unless you can smoke out the single Assault you need to take down (and taking down even 1 Assault with 4 Mediums whilst 11 other mechs are shooting at you is...hard).

I don't remember this one. In all the limited tonnage Flashpoints I've played, the strength levels were fairly close. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Corvinus85 said:

I don't remember this one. In all the limited tonnage Flashpoints I've played, the strength levels were fairly close. 

Ha, not this one.

Looking at various forums, the general advice seems to be to try to stay south of the main enemy concentration and then draw out the Assault by itself (or Sensor Lock), then keep hitting the Assault with LRMs and, when it comes up the hill, direct fire weapons. Most of the other mechs have to come up the hill from either side in a horseshoe shape, and one batch of 4 starts further north. You'll take a lot of damage from enemy LRMs so you need to stay mobile. If you can also stay just on the left hand sign of a line running through roughly where the Assault is, you may also not trigger the reinforcement lance, so you can get away with dealing with 8 rather than 12. And you only need to kill the Assault and run, you don't need to take down all of them.

ETA: Tried that three more times and though I can take down the Assault, it's impossible to evac (the evac zone is behind all the other mechs). So that seemed like a sign to put BattleTech to bed (100 hours on this playthrough!) in favour of Rome Remastered.

Edited by Werthead
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3 hours ago, Fez said:

Well I'm 14 hours into Baldur's Gate and it's feeling like maybe this'll finally be the run. Jury's still out of course, I could easily lose interest; I'm not even at the Nashkal Mines yet. But I've done an awful lot of roaming around and have hit level 4. I'm playing a magic user for the first time, a Dragon Disciple sorcerer, and I think that helps. I'd usually play some sort of fighter usually, and fighters just have so little to do at lower levels (at least back in 2nd edition; I've been DMing a tabletop in 5th edition and it seems better).

I'd forgotten just how annoying the reputation system in the game is though; at least if you're trying to have any evil party members. It just doesn't make sense either. Kaigan may be evil alignment, but if I'm showering him with cool gear and the party is earning tons of gold, why would he care if I help out a few random people? But so far I've managed to keep my reputation to 12, and am balancing having Khalid, Jahiera, and Imoen on one side and Kaigan and Viconia on the other. I did accidentally kill an NPC at one point, which helped drop my rep; but as a chaotic neutral I don't feel too bad about it.

The beginning section of BG1 can be either one of the worst or one of the best portions of the game. If you go straight from the Friendly Arm Inn to Nashkell and do the mines, it's going to suck. Being level 1 or 2 in those mines is just incredibly brutal. Combine that with the mines being repetitive, fairly boring, and maze-like just makes the whole first act really, really awful.

That said, if you take the time to explore, do some side quests, level up, and get a bunch of party members together to make your ideal party, it can be a lot of fun. The mines still suck, but they're much easier when you can breeze through quickly at a higher level. 

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I'm giving up on Mass Effect. I just don't enjoy it. There's no challenge to it, you don't even have to reload. So then it's like I'm watching an interactive movie where I have to stop and do these tedious shooting missions. 

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13 minutes ago, RumHam said:

I'm giving up on Mass Effect. I just don't enjoy it. There's no challenge to it, you don't even have to reload. So then it's like I'm watching an interactive movie where I have to stop and do these tedious shooting missions. 

The gameplay in the second game is vastly superior in my memory.  I'd try to stick with it and power through the first game. 

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35 minutes ago, RumHam said:

I'm giving up on Mass Effect. I just don't enjoy it. There's no challenge to it, you don't even have to reload. So then it's like I'm watching an interactive movie where I have to stop and do these tedious shooting missions. 

Which difficulty are you playing on? 

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I finally got enough time together to get off the Citadel in ME last night.  Flew around.  Fought a Thresher Maw (those are tougher now...) did some more exploration missions.  Made a happy accidental discovery that you now gain XP regularly for kills while in the Mako.  No more getting the giant worm or the huge Geth tank down to 2% and then risking your time to hop out and shoot at it with your pea shooter.

Ran down an entire pirate camp in the Mako and racked up a good amount of XP in a matter of seconds.  That was refreshing.  :lol: 

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Posted (edited)

I tried a demo of a game called Ghostrunner a game with lots of wall running an every enemy and the player dies after the first hit. A bit too difficult for slow old me. Mainly tried it because it supports RTX.

Edited by Luzifer's right hand
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4 hours ago, Werthead said:

BattleTech's first Steiner Flashpoint: limits you to 4 Medium mechs, max tonnage 50t, and throws at you 12 enemy mechs, a mixture of 1 Assault, 4 Heavies and 7 Mediums. This makes the mission almost impossible, unless you can smoke out the single Assault you need to take down (and taking down even 1 Assault with 4 Mediums whilst 11 other mechs are shooting at you is...hard).

Huh, that didn't sound familiar at all, so I checked and I was indeed missing the Steiner alliance achievement. Gave me a reason to continue the career game.

Got the alliance and picked up the mission. I went with a Raven, backed up by a UAC/20 armed Centurion, Star League Phoenix Hawk and a Crab. The Centurion lost the autocannon arm, but not before headshotting an enemy Warhammer and coring a Locust. Meanwhile the Phoenix Hawk took out two Victors (one the assassination Target) through the tried and true method of jumping behind them and alpha-striking the center torso. There were a couple of Assassins hanging around that I managed to take out, leaving just a lance of heavies which I could outmaneuver to get to the evac point. Definitely one of the meaner missions in the game.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Relic said:

Which difficulty are you playing on? 

Whatever the default was. Using the new 30 level system. I feel like if I had to worry about ammo it'd be more challenging and I might ever use anything other than my assault rifle. 

Edit: so if I do decide to press on, are there any side-quests that impact the other games? Because if I continue I'm just going to try to breeze through it as quickly as possible.

Edited by RumHam
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