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Video Games- At least 2023 looks like a banger


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7 hours ago, IlyaP said:

On @Werthead's recommendation, I'm giving Mass Effect: Andromeda another try. I feel like I need a week long vacation to just get through everything this game has on offer, as there's just...so much. Of everything. 

I thought Andromeda was fine. But after finishing it once I never felt any urge to give it another playthrough, some elements just felt a bit too tedious for me to want to go through again for a story that I only found to be mildly interesting.

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Been playing Tunic, a 2D-Zeldalike (with, I guess, soulslike influences). A game where being obtuse is a game mechanic- part of the premise is there are no instructions up front, and a majority of signage and clues in the game are in a made-up alphabet so of mixed help. Throughout the game you find pages of a user manual for the game- also partly in English, partly in runes- and you work out how to do things and where to go from that. 

That means it's by turns brilliant and infuriating. There are game mechanics open to you from the start of the game but it simply doesn't tell you about them till three hours in, and that can be pretty funny, as can the moment where you fight your way past multiple dungeons and enemies only to be led back round and realise there was a secret path in the opening area that skips a good 2 hours of game with no upgrades whatsoever, should you choose to. And just finding the way on your own is rewarding.
But the problem is that there's no clues for you if you've missed something or are doing something wrong. I had to go looking for a guide because the gameworld/map/design by any normal standards is guiding you, at a certain point, to a new epic-looking part of the map, but in actuality there's no further progress there and no explanation as to why- which is that the dongles you need are in parts of the map you were already in. There is a new path to the first one but it's so mundane compared to the big path that's 'promised' I just missed it repeatedly, and the main clue is hidden after that path. 

For the most part that's not been a big problem and I love the atmosphere and overall game design (and I'm not generally against being vague, or progression that goes against common intuition as a sort of joke- Hollow Knight is my favourite game and also the bit in Cave Story where the secret ending of the game is hidden behind you making two choices it's not even clear you're able to make, the first one about three hours earlier, was funny to me) but it is at least for me a slight misbalance. 

 

Also: I feel that checkpoints or unlockable paths back to old checkpoints could be slightly more evenly spaced, I found myself making the same ten-minute loop to die just before the cut back a few too many times, but there are accessibility options and in any case less dyspraxic people won't die as often as me, so that's not a huge knock on it.


Overall, a good game, and once I'm done I should work on some of the other Zeldalikes I have in the library, because I love that genre but I've built up a stack of several that aren't finished for no good reason.

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10 hours ago, IlyaP said:

On @Werthead's recommendation, I'm giving Mass Effect: Andromeda another try. I feel like I need a week long vacation to just get through everything this game has on offer, as there's just...so much. Of everything. 

It's definitely a game that's worth it for the combat, and the story is fine and raises some interesting questions about colonisation/refugees the game doesn't give easy answers to. A lot of the busywork you can completely ignore though. Once you've gotten each planet to 100% habitability (which usually takes about half the time you can spend on each planet) there's no need to do more.

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2 hours ago, polishgenius said:

Been playing Tunic, a 2D-Zeldalike (with, I guess, soulslike influences). A game where being obtuse is a game mechanic- part of the premise is there are no instructions up front, and a majority of signage and clues in the game are in a made-up alphabet so of mixed help. Throughout the game you find pages of a user manual for the game- also partly in English, partly in runes- and you work out how to do things and where to go from that. 

That means it's by turns brilliant and infuriating. <snip>

I played Tunic over the summer and I think the bolded bit sums it up well. On the whole, I enjoyed it, but I did have to resort to a guide at some point because I didn't have the brain space this summer to decipher the manual's text. 

Also played Stray, which made me miss our cats a lot and replayed Death's Door, which is super fun.

Then school started back up and I am teaching two brand new (to me) classes plus a third partly new one, so now I have no time for any games aside from occasional Dead Cells runs which tend to end relatively quickly since I got to 5 BC over the summer and they weren't kidding about that being "Hell" difficulty.

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3 hours ago, Werthead said:

It's definitely a game that's worth it for the combat, and the story is fine and raises some interesting questions about colonisation/refugees the game doesn't give easy answers to. A lot of the busywork you can completely ignore though. Once you've gotten each planet to 100% habitability (which usually takes about half the time you can spend on each planet) there's no need to do more.

The little memories involving Ryder's father are increasingly interesting (props for hiring an excellent voice actor!), the score by Joe Paesano (who scored the Netflix Daredevil show) is exceptionally good, and the removal of the frustrating paragade system is appreciated, as I never liked it. There's a definite feeling/concern of game padding that I'm detecting with the resource mining, but lawdy, the design, the huge levels, the art, it's all top notch. The coloring, the texture work, it's all exceptional. The artists who worked on this definitely deserve a considerable amount of praise for some excellent work. 

The character movements are a bit...off somehow, in a way that I can't quite work out how to verbalise just yet. There's an odd weightiness almost, in terms of their movement/keyboard responsiveness. But that's a minor frustration. Otherwise, this game is quite fun so far. And unarguably gorgeous. 

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19 minutes ago, IlyaP said:

The little memories involving Ryder's father are increasingly interesting (props for hiring an excellent voice actor!), the score by Joe Paesano (who scored the Netflix Daredevil show) is exceptionally good, and the removal of the frustrating paragade system is appreciated, as I never liked it. There's a definite feeling/concern of game padding that I'm detecting with the resource mining, but lawdy, the design, the huge levels, the art, it's all top notch. The coloring, the texture work, it's all exceptional. The artists who worked on this definitely deserve a considerable amount of praise for some excellent work. 

The character movements are a bit...off somehow, in a way that I can't quite work out how to verbalise just yet. There's an odd weightiness almost, in terms of their movement/keyboard responsiveness. But that's a minor frustration. Otherwise, this game is quite fun so far. And unarguably gorgeous. 

I agree with all of that.  I have often said that the game suffers from a severe case of open world-itis that is a feature of the gaming era we are in.  The game is sometimes just big for bigness sake.  

Take the exact same game and make it a bit tighter and it would be much better received I am sure.

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23 hours ago, Rhom said:

I agree with all of that.  I have often said that the game suffers from a severe case of open world-itis that is a feature of the gaming era we are in.  The game is sometimes just big for bigness sake.  

Take the exact same game and make it a bit tighter and it would be much better received I am sure.

There is a *definite* "look at this big open world game like Assassin's Creed in space that we made!" feel to it. I fear I might get sucked down the "research and develop ALL THE THINGS!" hole, as is typical for me when playing a game. I can't explore a bit of it - I've gotta see it all! 

That said, ME:A makes up for any shortcomings by having some really funny quips and lines from Scott, Peebee, Lian, and others. I don't think I've laughed this hard in an ME game since ME2 (i.e., anything involving Moridin). It has a nicely defined and well-written crew. The scene with Liam's couch in particular stands out as delightfully unexpected but oh too real. 

I know ME:A launched in a horrifically buggy state, but I'm really loving the current version available on PCs. Whatever horrible things players experienced that soured them on this game - I'm not experiencing it. Aside from the occassional buggy NPC model in a few places, the To Be Expected bit of texture clipping when moving the camera at a particularly wild angle, or the occasional lighting issue that pops up and is quickly resolved within a few seconds. 

 

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Finally got xbox 360 emulation working on the steam deck without having to install windows. All so I can play remasters of two N64 games. I still think it's amazing how well Goldeneye and Perfect Dark hold up when given proper two stick controls and a new coat of paint.

I also ordered a 256gb SSD for it that should come tomorrow. the 64gb steam deck is fine as a gaming device, but the thing has become my main computer. I need more space for desktop mode stuff. The sharers alone take up a huge chunk if you have 512gb of games on the SD card. 

 

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On 10/8/2022 at 3:09 AM, The Anti-Targ said:

I thought Andromeda was fine. But after finishing it once I never felt any urge to give it another playthrough, some elements just felt a bit too tedious for me to want to go through again for a story that I only found to be mildly interesting.

Absolutely agreed with this. I had some fun with Andromeda while I was playing it, and there are some really cool parts to it. It's not the disaster many painted it as. But over time, even though I didn't try to go anywhere near 100%ing it, the game started to feel like work, like a tedious check-list. The constant loading screens and quests that stretch out over multiple planets, the e-mail system that actually made me feel like I was at work, etc... By the time the game was over, I was so burnt out on it. And then I played Breath of the Wild right after and it felt like night and day in terms of what a really fun open world experience could be like.

The gameplay was fun though. If the multiplayer servers are still open, I might be open to going back for a few rounds.

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I'm still mainly playing Elden Ring on PS5. I have not enjoyed a game as much in years. I guess this is now my favourite work GRRM was involved in.

If you used Stadia I'm sorry I signed up for a free trial of the pro version which must have convinced google that it is a dead end. I got the free trial via LG and they did not miss a step and are now promoting GeForce NOW. Both services are sadly slightly too laggy for me not to notice in fast paced games. But if you have an LG TV I noticed a PS5 controller works really well with it.

Not that I need it as I have a RTX 3080 in my PC which was probably a colossal waste of money as I'm not really using the Steam Index which is the only thing that really benefited from it(had a 1080Ti before). At this point I can probably say that both purchases were a bit of a waste. Well I sold my 1080Ti for nearly the price I got the RTX 3080 for as I got it during the phase when people thought prices were insane in 2020 before prices really took off. I have not even bothered to set the sensors of the Index up in my new place I have been here for nearly a year.

In the other hand I'm really enjoying the PS5. It has the first controller that feels really good to me.

Edited by Luzifer's right hand
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I've been playing Runic -- basically only playing on my Switch until I procure a PS5 (will need for GoW!!).

It's fun, interesting, good wind down game. Same with Death's Door, I don't *love* the controls, but it works. Still relatively early on -- at the Garden Knight. 

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Started Terra Invicta. I've never done a CK game before, and it's very daunting the amount of info and stuff that's going on, but it's pretty and the story is neat, and I love the factionalization of humans. 

Also Bethesda put out a video talking about some of the background and influences for Starfield, and in particular they named Traveller as one of the big ones - and that makes me SUPER happy:

 

 

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16 hours ago, Kalnestk Oblast said:

Started Terra Invicta. I've never done a CK game before, and it's very daunting the amount of info and stuff that's going on, but it's pretty and the story is neat, and I love the factionalization of humans. 

Also Bethesda put out a video talking about some of the background and influences for Starfield, and in particular they named Traveller as one of the big ones - and that makes me SUPER happy:

Bethesda had the rights to Traveller in the late 1990s, but it was when they were going through a huge money crisis and they went all-in on Morrowind and didn't have the bandwidth to make that as well, and the rights expired.

The two MegaTraveller RPGs in the early 1990s were pretty good for the time, although wildly over-ambitious for the technology available.

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2 hours ago, Matrim Fox Cauthon said:

A JRPG-inspired TTRPG from Italy - Fabula Ultima - dropped this past week in English. That has inspired me to go back and play some JRPGs, starting with Octopath Traveler

I loved what they were doing with Octopath Traveler and the visual style is fantastic.  I just wish they had been able to tie it all together for the 8 heroes a little better.  I've been working through the Trails series (Sky trilogy, Zero/Azure, Cold Steel) for the past couple of years and I'm coming to the close of CSIV.  I'm really looking forward to being done with it for a while and getting into some other JRPG worlds though.

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6 minutes ago, Rhom said:

I loved what they were doing with Octopath Traveler and the visual style is fantastic.  I just wish they had been able to tie it all together for the 8 heroes a little better.  I've been working through the Trails series (Sky trilogy, Zero/Azure, Cold Steel) for the past couple of years and I'm coming to the close of CSIV.  I'm really looking forward to being done with it for a while and getting into some other JRPG worlds though.

I believe that they will address that in Octopath Traveler II (24th Feb. 2023 release date). 

I'm also eyeing Sea of Stars, a Canadian game inspired by Chrono Trigger, but it won't release until 2023. 

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5 hours ago, A True Kaniggit said:

So Skyrim is still broken for Heavy Armor players on survival mode.

Would it be so bad to let us wear a warm undershirt under our Heavy Armor?

Fucking Bethesda….

 

 

 

Wait, what? 

Tell me more. 

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On 10/14/2022 at 10:17 PM, Werthead said:

Bethesda had the rights to Traveller in the late 1990s, but it was when they were going through a huge money crisis and they went all-in on Morrowind and didn't have the bandwidth to make that as well, and the rights expired.

The two MegaTraveller RPGs in the early 1990s were pretty good for the time, although wildly over-ambitious for the technology available.

Wert, were these MegaTraveller rpgs table-top or on PC? You've got me interested in exploring this a bit...

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