Whatcha Been Playing?

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Alex79uk
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk »

I've barely touched my PS4 so far this year, don't really know why but just haven't felt like playing anything. But last night I decided to get on with my Assassin's Creed Unity playthrough since I'm not far from the end. I ended up really enjoying it.

I feel like this game has an unfairly poor reputation. I understand a lot of this was due to terrible bugs and performance at launch, but even aside from that barely anyone has much positive to say about it. And I think that's a shame. It's got a few really good ideas. It's the first AC game which actually let's you plan assassinations properly, almost Hitman style. There are different opportunities and ways of doing it, and you can use disguises for the first time in the series, too. And the crowds! The extra 'next gen at the time' power is nowhere more noticable than the huge crowds in the street, its really impressive even today.

I think Unity was just a victim of a series that had become stale, but it did try new ideas, and I think it's still a solid game.

Aside from that, I also - and I've no idea why - decided to download Bloodborne and start a NG+. I ended up playing up to the first boss (Cleric Beast) and getting to the Hunters Dream (with no deaths). Almost certainly won't play through the full game again, but had a really fun hour with it. Might chip away here and there when I fancy it.

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Jobobonobo
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Jobobonobo »

Still stuck on level 4 boss in Thumper. It is the third phase where it is an absolute bastard. The first green light is immediately before a barrier you have to smash through and then you have to immediately go over to the next lane on your right to hit the next light. Time and again, I mess up. I go through the barrier but I forget to let go and go to the next lane or I hit the light but forget to barge through the barrier and get damaged. The sense of timing is stupidly tight and I am almost beginning to not enjoy it. Taking a little break from it for now.

So I tried Everything in the meantime seeing as it was just over 3 euro on a sale and it is on this year's volume list so thought I would give it a go. This thing is the anti-Thumper! It is so relaxing just going around hearing little philosophical lectures while rambling through the landscape as a rock, an oak or a moose. It is pleasant enough but I am unsure how much I am going to get out of it. Think I will use it to chill out after getting angry at Thumper. That is the plan for now anyways.

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Jon Cheetham
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Jon Cheetham »

Alex79uk wrote: April 19th, 2021, 6:49 pm I've barely touched my PS4 so far this year, don't really know why but just haven't felt like playing anything. But last night I decided to get on with my Assassin's Creed Unity playthrough since I'm not far from the end. I ended up really enjoying it.

I feel like this game has an unfairly poor reputation. I understand a lot of this was due to terrible bugs and performance at launch, but even aside from that barely anyone has much positive to say about it. And I think that's a shame. It's got a few really good ideas. It's the first AC game which actually let's you plan assassinations properly, almost Hitman style. There are different opportunities and ways of doing it, and you can use disguises for the first time in the series, too. And the crowds! The extra 'next gen at the time' power is nowhere more noticable than the huge crowds in the street, its really impressive even today.

I think Unity was just a victim of a series that had become stale, but it did try new ideas, and I think it's still a solid game.

Aside from that, I also - and I've no idea why - decided to download Bloodborne and start a NG+. I ended up playing up to the first boss (Cleric Beast) and getting to the Hunters Dream (with no deaths). Almost certainly won't play through the full game again, but had a really fun hour with it. Might chip away here and there when I fancy it.
Couldn't agree more re Unity. It's reputation as a dud entry is imo unfair, and outdated. Paris is amazing to explore, parkouring across those rooftops is among my best memories of these games. The crowds and streets are still really cool, and those "killbox" assassination missions are something I wish they'd being back to the series.

I also really like the free DLC Dead Kings, which has a new town and this gloomy gothic atmosphere.

Also, enjoy Bloodborne. I wonder what brought you back. Was it the hunt, the blood, or the horrible dream...

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Sinclair Gregstrum
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Sinclair Gregstrum »

KissMammal wrote: April 19th, 2021, 4:46 pm Not sure if I'm alone on this, but for me the og Halo had a specific atmosphere and a sense of scale and grandeur that was sorely lacking in the sequels. The sheer size of the levels was unlike anything I'd ever seen before and it gave the game a really unique and epic feel. The sequels dropped this entirely in favour of graphical polish and spectacle. Reach came the closest to recreating that feel of the original, but even that felt a bit confined and much more conventional in terms of level design.
I've enjoyed all the Halo games (some more than others), but I totally agree with this. It is what has got me most excited about Halo Infinite.

343 have been very explicit about how they're trying to recapture that feel of the original, with the levels being more expansive and open for exploration.

Even with the big delay, I've got a good feeling about Infinite. I think it's going to be worth the wait.

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Scrustle
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Scrustle »

That atmosphere that Halo used to have is one of my favourite things about it too. But I disagree that none of the sequels did. It was something that gradually waned over the series, but it was still there strong enough with the original trilogy. Even if it was already lesser by the end of those three games, it still managed to scratch the itch in a way later games struggled to.

I disagree that Reach recaptured it though. I've heard that take before, and I've never really understood it. That game is heavily focused on the cliched cast of characters more than the atmosphere, and the planet of Reach itself doesn't feel anywhere near as mysterious or interesting as the places you go in the older games. I do keep meaning to give the game another look at some point though, as part of why I like it much less than the others is how blurry it is thanks to the primitive use of temporal anti-aliasing it has. But with the new MCC version that I've yet to get to, that is supposedly fixed. I don't expect that to change the other issues I have with it, but at least that would be one of them.

I'm glad that Infinite does seem to be trying to recapture that feeling, but I'm unsure if they can pull it off. It seems like they know how to make environments that look the part, and they finally got a decent soundtrack again, but I'm still pretty sceptical. Other trailers with a more narrative focus seem to point towards the game repeating some of the same problems that have plagued the series for a while, and the high level of turnover in the development leads are not encouraging. Also a big part of that old atmosphere came from not really knowing what the deal with the Forerunners was. Now that cat is very thoroughly out of the bag. Not sure it's possible to put that back in.

Oh but this isn't the Halo thread so uhh...

I couldn't keep myself away from this series and started up Drakengard 3 after all. I've already played a good chunk of this game before, so originally I was planning to pick up with my old save but just go back to the beginning so I could have a big level boost to help me through. Turns out replaying levels doesn't give you XP, so I just started a new file anyway.

This game is incredibly stupid. Again this isn't a new discovery for me, but it is a strange beast. The tone is mostly comedic, and full of a lot of farcical moments and crude humour. It has some dark themes too, but the overall tone is that it's playing it off as a joke. All the characters are some form of murderous pervert, except for the dragon, who is a naive and dumb child. And they talk about sex a whole lot. It's quite the odd experience.

The performance is absolutely atrocious. This is something the game already has a reputation for, but it certainly earns it. It's frequently dipping in to single digits, and basically never manages to get anywhere near 30fps for any significant period of time. It is near unplayable. Frequently I can't tell what's going on, or I'm unsure what the result of my inputs will even be at any given moment. It's hard to give any appraisal of the gameplay itself when it's presented like this. At one point before starting this up I was considering trying it out emulated rather than on my actual PS3 copy, but I assumed that my PC wouldn't be able to run it. But this is so bad, that even if it ran subpar through emulation, it might still be a lot better than this. But I've started this already, and I'm mostly in it for the story anyway, so I'll keep pushing through.

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ratsoalbion
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by ratsoalbion »

I wasn't saying that Reach recaptured Halo's atmosphere, it definitely has its own vibe, I was specifically talking about the scale and scope of the play areas.

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Magical_Isopod
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Magical_Isopod »

Been playing a couple games.

Homefront: The Revolution is... Terribly mediocre. Has a few good things going for it - I really dig the territorial control stuff - but overall it's a really dull experience, and the decision to have *North Korea* as the antagonist just kinda makes the game feel like a joke. A woefully impoverished dictatorship is a global technological superpower and arms dealer? Yeah no. I know that it was originally China when the original Homefront was in development, and that would have made more sense, butknowing what I know of war history and occupation and revolts... Everything in this game is wholly unbelievable. It's pop media stuff for the thoughtless masses, I get it, but it's a bugbear for me.

Also been playing Phoenix Wright on 3DS, and it's... Okay. Again, setting is a bugbear for me. It's a SO obviously set in Japan, with tons of Japanese imagery and character archetypes... But it's all whitewashed into American stuff. Very, very weird. But, at least this one is a lot of fun. The first game, which I'm almost done, has some signs of age. It feels old and outdated, and the artwork clashes really bad in the "bonus" chapter, where the new characters look a full decade more modern than the original ones. But like I said, the plot's really fun, and this game has style out the arse.

Marlew
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Marlew »

That east-meets-west strange blend is uniquely charming, I agree.

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Magical_Isopod
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Magical_Isopod »

Marlew wrote: April 20th, 2021, 7:19 pm That east-meets-west strange blend is uniquely charming, I agree.
I was actually arguing the opposite. I don't know much about the series, is that intentional? Because from my lens, it appears as though Americana is awkwardly pasted on top of Japanese settings and characters. Like Speed Racer levels of localization.

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Miririn
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Miririn »

Iirc the early* "Phoenix Wright" games are all set in America, so I think the Americana is added in there by the creators, but they weren't too fussed about getting some cultural things (like the American judiciary system lmao) right, which is why it's a mishmash of American and Japanese culture. (Please correct me if I'm wrong, Phoenix fans!)

*? The only one I've ever played us the Meiji Japan one** so this is just going off what my friends say.

** I never finished that, actually. I wonder if I can find my 3DS charger and play it sometime. I got about half way through I think? Back in 2016. When I first got my 3DS and was buying up a lot of second-hand games to test what I liked. Unsurprisingly, my history nerd friend recommended that one to me, but I got impatient that the game wasn't letting me do enough on my own. I'm more used to passive games now, so I think I might enjoy it more if I tried it again.



I finally platinumed TLOU2 and I'm playing "Disco Elysium" again (and still adoring it) now it's been patched. Not sure what to play next - or if I should start anything while I'm playing Disco (I tend to be a one-at-a-time game person, but I need to concentrate with Disco and sometimes I'm tired and lazy and just want some pewpew smashsmash cheap emotion). I'm not sure how close I am to the end of Disco though... the to-do list is decreasing in size but anything is possible with this game. It's such a smart game - it makes me laugh like a drain but feel strangely melancholic and lonely at the same time.

Edit - Oop never mind, managed to finish it this evening lmao

On a shallow note, some of the voices they use are stupidly attractive. Especially Kim's and Miss Oranje's. Those actors should read audiobooks. I keep finding excuses to chat with Miss Oranje just to hear that voice.

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Jon Cheetham
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Jon Cheetham »

From the Phoenix Wright wiki:
The localization of the games adapts the story to take place in an alternate-universe Los Angeles in which Japanese culture has been allowed to flourish and blend into American culture
I also enjoy the blend of Japanese and US genre tropes, and I like the way it sends up detective fiction like with Gumshoe. In fact a lot of the characters are funny and memorable.

I've been playing the first one a bit on Switch and it's great, although like every other game including Disco it has been totally neglected since Monster Hunter Rise came along.

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Miririn
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Miririn »

Ooh mea culpa haha. I was completely wrong! I'll add that to the "I need to use google before opening my mouth" list (...it's a long list :P )

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Jon Cheetham
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Jon Cheetham »

Miririn wrote: April 21st, 2021, 8:20 am Ooh mea culpa haha. I was completely wrong! I'll add that to the "I need to use google before opening my mouth" list (...it's a long list :P )
Haha, I had no idea either but decided to look it up and find out.

I have a similiarly extensive list in that department!

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Alex79uk
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk »

I started Assassin's Creed: Syndicate yesterday, and must have put about ten hours in so far. It's really good! My favorite movie is Gangs Of New York, and it's giving off really similar vibes with the gang wars and fights and stuff (although I'd love an entry set in that era of American history - slightly later than AC3). The zip line is a great addition, and the side quests are the best the series has seen (up to this point, not played anything after this game yet). Can't wait to get back in to it!

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Miririn
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Miririn »

"Gangs of New York" is really underrated (she said, going wildly off topic). I'm not wild about the Leo Cameron stuff, but the supporting cast is so, so good?

Back on topic:
I'm "Bloodborne"-ing and dying a lot, but very stylishly while having fun.

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Miririn
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Miririn »

With apologies for the double post - I'm still so crap at "Bloodborne" it's not even funny, but I can feel myself making tiny, baby, miniscule steps and I watched some great videos by the guy who helped write the Official Guide and found his explanations really helpful in reconsidering how I was approaching the game (my first From Software game so it's all very new). I'm terrible at it and every once and a while I start a new game to re-do the first bit with improved skills (yes, I'm that bad that I haven't even fought the Cleric Beast yet).

That was basically all a long preamble to what I actually came here to say, which is that the feeling when you manage to land a Visceral Attack (eight out of ten times I can't, hahaha) is so satisfying that they should market it as a serotonin-boosting drug.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Tolkientaters »

Miririn wrote: April 21st, 2021, 6:28 pm
I'm "Bloodborne"-ing and dying a lot, but very stylishly while having fun.
That was how Bloodborne started for me, ut was my first souls game, but after playing it a while and getting a handle on the combat it became my all time favorite game.

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Jon Cheetham
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Jon Cheetham »

Miririn wrote: April 23rd, 2021, 12:41 pm That was basically all a long preamble to what I actually came here to say, which is that the feeling when you manage to land a Visceral Attack (eight out of ten times I can't, hahaha) is so satisfying that they should market it as a serotonin-boosting drug.
Yes! The audio feedback as well when you get that faint sschnng and you know it's visceral time. Genius.

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markfm007
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by markfm007 »

Bloodborne was my first From Soft game too, amazing experience. I've enjoyed all their games I've played but Bloodborne has a particularly special quality to it, maybe because it was my first lol.

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Magical_Isopod
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Magical_Isopod »

So I unlocked Timesplitters 2 on Homefront: The Revolution. Yes, it looks great. Yes, it runs great.

But getting there has been super deflating. There's a bit of a caveat the media is seemingly unaware of.

Homefront: The Revolution is not a good game. It's not a bad game, either. It's just thoroughly mediocre at best, and maddeningly buggy at worst. But here's the thing for those who've bought Homefront JUST for Timesplitters... If you progress past a certain point and into the final mission, you CAN'T go back to the arcade cab that lets you access Timesplitters. There are no saves, only automatic checkpoints. So you can't make a backup save - at least on console. I was one button press away from missing Timesplitters COMPLETELY.

In other words, it's extremely easy to miss the sole reason that most people are playing Homefront in current year.

Unless you're gaming on a budget, or you absolutely need an ancient shooter in 4K, just skip Homefront completely and get the original version of Timesplitters 2. It's not a good time.

I basically can't complete Homefront now, which is deeply disappointing in a way. If I do, I lose Timesplitters. I'd love the trophies - but frankly, I've already encountered a few bugged trophies in this game, so I may not have even gotten them anyway...

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