Whatcha Been Playing?

This is where you can deliberate anything relating to videogames - past, present and future.
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Magical_Isopod
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Magical_Isopod »

I started playing Mega Man 3 and 4. On Gameboy. Through 3DS virtual console. And you know what? I think I actually *prefer* them to the NES versions. Which sounds really weird on paper, but something about the monochrome colour scheme just works better for the graphics, IMHO. I am really not a fun of the obnoxiously bright colours the NES in particular produces, and the monochrome works better for me. I dunno.

As far as I can tell, MM4 in particular seems like a reasonable facsimile of the original. I'm not especially familiar with the original MM games - 11 is the only one I've beaten, to date. But I'm really enjoying MM4 on the Gameboy. No one ever talks about these ports, but they're a good time. And the ease of use with the 3DS save state menu thingy makes the bullshit moments of these games a lot more palatable. MM3 on the other hand... That one I just became frustrated with. Even with the save states, I found it to be tedious in its difficulty.

But yeah. I recommend picking these up on Virtual Console if you're so inclined.

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Alex79uk
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk »

Magical_Isopod wrote: May 2nd, 2020, 4:41 pm I am really not a fun of the obnoxiously bright colours the NES in particular produces.
Ha, that's really interesting you mention that. As I was playing Super Mario Bros 2 on NES it reminded me of something I've always thought about the console - just how muted and drab the pale colour palette seems to be! Interesting to have two totally opposite thoughts on something which I'd guess wouldn't usually be considered subjective.

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Magical_Isopod
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Magical_Isopod »

Alex79uk wrote: May 2nd, 2020, 5:27 pm
Magical_Isopod wrote: May 2nd, 2020, 4:41 pm I am really not a fun of the obnoxiously bright colours the NES in particular produces.
Ha, that's really interesting you mention that. As I was playing Super Mario Bros 2 on NES it reminded me of something I've always thought about the console - just how muted and drab the pale colour palette seems to be! Interesting to have two totally opposite thoughts on something which I'd guess wouldn't usually be considered subjective.
Perhaps it's because I lived through the horrors of grey and brown Gen 7 games. Who knows? I think the bigger issue is not the "brightness", but rather the limited colour palette. For instance, having to make every wall teal because you only have a handful of colours to work with. The Gameboy has less colours, but I think the monochrome scheme uniquely lends to imagination in a way that limited colours can't... If that makes sense. Black and white vs. Poorly colorized film. Or something.

... I do think I'll give MM4 on Mega Man Anniversary Collection a whirl though. Just to compare apples to potatoes.

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Flabyo
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Flabyo »

The nes palette is quite muted compared to the master system (which is often close to neon, so so bright) but it’s pretty comparable to the c64 in many ways, which was also seen as quite ‘muddy’ compared to the brighter hues of the Amstrad cpc.

There is a LOT of orange and dark blue on the nes though.

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Magical_Isopod
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Magical_Isopod »

I actually did go back and play Mega Man 4 on the PS2 version of the Anniversary Collection. And you know what? Not a bad game at all. I've said it before, but the remixed music on Anniversary Collection in particular is *phenomenal*, and it's a crying shame that it's never been reused elsewhere - you can't even find it on YouTube, that's how unknown it seems to be.

You can hear it here, on this ancient website, however:
https://www.zophar.net/music/playstatio ... ction.html

But yeah, the gameplay's an improvement over the GB version. Much more variety in the levels and enemies. But can we all agree that those enemies that lock on to your hit box and never leave it can get right fucked? The little Saturn guys in Ring Man's stage, for instance. Rage-inducing, those things. And the graphics are good too - Mega Man 1-3 (and especially 1) are kind of ugly, and 4-6 (especially 6) seem to really be pushing what the NES can do graphically.

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Combine Hunter
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Combine Hunter »

I'm in tactics mode lately.

Been playing XCOM: Chimera Squad and finally got past the bit I was stuck on in Final Fantasy Tactics.

XCOM: Chimera Squad is exactly what I thought it would be. It's bite sized XCOM with some experimental ideas they know they are free to play with at a budget price and no number on the end. I think it runs out of steam as it goes along, as there isn't enough here to support it's long-ish play time, but ideas like breach stand out as mechanics I'd be quite eager to see show up in the next numbered entry. The writing and characters though, can go straight in the bin. If this is Firaxis testing the waters to see if there is interest in a character focused XCOM entry, I think they need to hire a much better writer or don't bother.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by stvnorman »

Really enjoying Streets of Rage 4 on Switch. Completely faithful to the series from what I can tell but also completely modern feeling and looking, and a fantastic beat ‘em up in its own right. I got to the end of stage 4 in normal mode solo (after tearing my hair out with the stage 2 boss almost all weekend) but needed some online partner help for the next few stages, and that works really well either with a friend or a random player – occasional lag but generally only when a new area has just loaded. So many things I love already… some of the chaotic mass brawls, like in Chinatown, which feel just like an old Bruce Lee movie; finding the retro areas – done two so far and I can see at least one more that I’ve not managed to unlock yet; just how 80’s the brilliantly styled (and massive variety of) hand-drawn art all looks; and, of course, the soundtrack isn’t bad either! Despite 160 hours in Animal Crossing so far, I think I might have found my game of the year and with everything on offer on top of the story mode, definitely have a keeper to come back to for many years to come!

Thanks to our friend Suits, I now have a fully functioning PS2, and what a luxury it is to not be making dozens of minute manual adjustments to the laser height every time I try to load a game! Anyway, I got the last few levels of my TimeSplitters playthrough finished, then got all the way to level 9 of TimeSplitters 2 so far. I think I still love the simplicity of the first game more (and I’ve already been back to try and improve some of my level completion times), but the sequel is just a milestone of creativity in the genre (maybe a result of coming before FPS games developed their own ruleset?) and it feels so fluid and fast-paced. Loads of stuff outside of the story mode and still looks great… Some of the checkpoints stink though!

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Mr Ixolite
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Mr Ixolite »

Magical_Isopod wrote: May 2nd, 2020, 4:41 pm I started playing Mega Man 3 and 4. On Gameboy. Through 3DS virtual console. And you know what? I think I actually *prefer* them to the NES versions. Which sounds really weird on paper, but something about the monochrome colour scheme just works better for the graphics, IMHO. I am really not a fun of the obnoxiously bright colours the NES in particular produces, and the monochrome works better for me. I dunno.

As far as I can tell, MM4 in particular seems like a reasonable facsimile of the original. I'm not especially familiar with the original MM games - 11 is the only one I've beaten, to date. But I'm really enjoying MM4 on the Gameboy. No one ever talks about these ports, but they're a good time. And the ease of use with the 3DS save state menu thingy makes the bullshit moments of these games a lot more palatable. MM3 on the other hand... That one I just became frustrated with. Even with the save states, I found it to be tedious in its difficulty.

But yeah. I recommend picking these up on Virtual Console if you're so inclined.
Oh man, Mega Man 11 may be the best game in the series I've played, but my favourite? Thats Mega Man IV for the gameboy.
I totally agree with the visuals, theres something about the monochrome zoomed in perspective of the GB games that just feel right to me, with the NES game seeming garishly colored and too big. Less intimate. Of course they had to compeltely overhaul the level designs to accomodate the Gameboy, but I think they're good in their own right
The monochrome palette also has the effect of rendering the bosses somehow more intimidating, which is enforced by the designs of the GB-original bosses; some of these are not cartooni-fied in any way, and look more like something out of Contra than Mega Man to me. Theres more of a sense of tension to the Wily stages, more of a sense you’re assaulting a death-machine, and the final battle in particular feels like nothing else in the classic series, in terms of both music and staging. I can’t think of any other Classic game where its’ truly felt like you were saving the world, except for this one.

Plus, it pushes the classic series forward in a few ways - its the origin of the shop, theres honest to god cut scenes, and I looooooove what they did with the stage select screens. Tiny things, but they make the game stand out to me.
I also have a good deal of Nostalgia for mega man II on the game boy, but if you liked IV, try giving V a spin. Some of the bosses are a bit uninspired, but its an intriguing little outlier in terms of the series’ tropes, at least at the surface level.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Magical_Isopod »

Mr Ixolite wrote: May 4th, 2020, 3:05 pm Plus, it pushes the classic series forward in a few ways - its the origin of the shop, theres honest to god cut scenes, and I looooooove what they did with the stage select screens. Tiny things, but they make the game stand out to me.
I also have a good deal of Nostalgia for mega man II on the game boy, but if you liked IV, try giving V a spin. Some of the bosses are a bit uninspired, but its an intriguing little outlier in terms of the series’ tropes, at least at the surface level.
You should check out my commentary in the Games Completed 2020 thread, Ix. :P I echo a lot of your thoughts here. I was really, really surprised by just how downright outstanding MMIV was. And NOBODY talks about it. But after playing it, I can say I'd definitely jump on a "Mega Man Legacy Collection 3". Imagine, they released that with all the GB games, Mega Man and Bass, and some of the oddball releases like Wily Wars and Power Fighters? Hot damn, I'd be right on board for sure.

Yo Leon, ask Capcom to do this. Use your psychic pro gamer powers.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by dezm0nd »

As a Sopranos lover, I've decided to get involved in the PS2 game for the first time.

It's utter dross but it's stitched together with cutscenes which are seemingly acted by the original cast. It wants to be like a GTA game but there's no driving, it's all fade to black, cut scene, melee fight, cut scene, fade to black.

The melee combat is shit and when they pepper them throughout the missions my heart begins to sink. It's quite interesting walking about locations from the show but overall it's a typical licensed videogame from the GTA 3 era

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Scrustle
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

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More Mafia 3. I think I'm starting to get in to the last third or so. It drags a whole lot in the middle. The repetitive and subpar gameplay really sets in hard. It even has you returning to the same locations within the same sequence of taking down enemy rackets of a specific area boss. And while the story moments and cutscenes are still entertaining thanks to their quality, the bombastic set piece missions seem to have been scaled back quite a lot deeper in to the game. They still exist, but they're much less imaginative and unique later on.

I did do one of the DLC chapters though, and that was pretty good. Much more killer, way less filler. Far fewer of these missions where you just have to drive to a place and shoot some random person over and over. And a higher concentration of big set piece missions, even if there still isn't loads of them with the DLC itself not being so long. But it was a lot of fun driving around the small town area where it takes place, flying over all the jumps placed everywhere, smashing through everything, all with the cops chasing you down at the same time. Not to mention the emphasis on murdering a bunch of KKK members. I also got a little kick out of how it smashes you over the head with symbolism in one of the later cutscenes. The brazen lack of subtlety was amusing.

But there's also one thing about this game that gets on my nerves that I forgot to mention before. It's one of those games that has an obsession with making you hold down a button to interact with everything, instead of a simple button press. It's completely unnecessary and just makes interacting with things feel drawn out and sluggish.

I also picked up Burnout Paradise Remastered since the Switch announcement got me to cave on picking up the PC version. And honestly... I'm not sure I'm feeling it. The game is one of my all time favourites, yet this time I'm not sure if it's grabbing my attention. I feel like I'm crashing thanks to unfair stuff a lot more often than is reasonable, and I've been a bit surprised how easy the game is. I'm not entirely sure how much I can put that down to just early events being easier, as I've reached up to A rank and it's still not really testing me much. That said, when all the stars align and I get a great run going, the magic is still there. It's just... not hitting me as hard as I remember it doing before. Maybe I'm just not in the right mindset for it right now, or maybe it's because I haven't been touching the online stuff. I remember that being a big part of the fun originally. No idea how active the game is these days though.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by rob25X »

Roblox (with a friend's daughter).

Much like with Minecraft (but even more so) I could instantly appreciate the games open-ended creative possibilities and could fully understand how many children who play the game, play nothing else. In Roblox, you can play and create pretty much anything you can think of, from horse farms and dragon kingdoms to massive water parks and prison escape games! The game is quite incredible from a technical and creative aspect.

Now the bad. Roblox is horrible with it's "micro" (and often not-so-micro transactions). Buy this, buy that, buy this, buy that - on almost every menu screen and every game you join. Roblox is by far the worst free-to-play-but-spend-money-on-everything game I've ever played. The game might be great for children's creative minds and it is possible to enjoy the game without racking up huge bills but parent's really need to monitor the game and should think carefully before allowing their children to start playing it and asking for Robux constantly.

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dezm0nd
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by dezm0nd »

Really struggling to get into anything single player again.

Even games I like in coop I'm finding playing on my own to be hard work

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Suits
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

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I've been playing Castlevania: Harmony of Dissidence on my trusty GBA-SP and while the game starts very strong it gets to a critical point then suddenly turns into a vague, confusing, maze.

Like almost all of the Igarashi games, you reach a point where the layout of the castle changes, becomes, flipped, spun, whatever - the layout of the game changes.

Whilst I normally welcome this, in this instance I feel it's much for the worse.

The situation here, is that you discover that there is a replica castle that resides in a different realm but it's essential the same. You have castle A and castle B. Thats fine.

The second castle is arranged in a different way, which means doors that were previously unlocked, are now locked.

There is absolutely no signposting what so ever, which is fine, you simply go to an area that you have never been too and press on. However, as you've already explored 85%+ of the castle areas are all marked as visited and doors that should be open are closed.

To make things, worse, the fast travel teleports are random in that I'm finding it hard to understand where one will take me. Plus, there are also teleports that take you to the 'other' version of the castle but to the same portal - it's all just to clever for its own good in this regard.

Often I'll spend 10/15 minutes traversing the castle to only find out that the portal I'm heading too isn't the one I need or takes me somewhere I wasn't expecting.

Couple that with doors that just won't open and give no suggestion of what to do it becomes a mess.

I'm not adverse to banging my head against a Castlevania game, in fact I quiet enjoy it but in this instance I'm not.

I'm about 10 hours in, I've had a quick look at a guide to try and point me in a direction, which it does, which I don't understand but then as soon as I've met said Character hidden away in an odd previously visited room - I'm on my own again, with no idea where to head - it feels a bit shit.

I have one more plan of action tonight, then if I don't get anywhere, or get a better understanding of any direction, I'm done with it.

Anyone else played this game ??

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

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Suits wrote: May 6th, 2020, 4:33 pm Castlevania: Harmony of Dissidence ...[snip]... Anyone else played this game ??
Well that sounds like a suspenseful medieval political thriller, unfortunately the only one that I've played was Harmony of Dissonance. :lol:

And yeah, it's not that good. Certainly not on the level of the Sorrow games or even later DS games like PoR & OoE. Not bad by any means but rather bland, obtuse and forgettable, unfortunately. Maybe if it hadn't been released in such a strong period for the franchise it would have made more of an impact but overall, I'd say that one can safely be skipped, especially if you're not enjoying yourself.

Although I remember the soundtrack and some of the bosses being rather nice.


Try the other DS games next!

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Suits
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

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KSubzero1000 wrote: May 6th, 2020, 4:55 pm Try the other DS games next!
The only one I don’t own, or have played, is Order of Ecclesia.

I’m kind of mopping up the games in the series I’ve not played now.

I was rather looking forward to DISSONANCE and while I feel it started strongly and has some cool hidden secrets and things, the castle layout had really soured it for me.

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Mr Ixolite
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Mr Ixolite »

Magical_Isopod wrote: May 4th, 2020, 4:07 pm
Mr Ixolite wrote: May 4th, 2020, 3:05 pm Plus, it pushes the classic series forward in a few ways - its the origin of the shop, theres honest to god cut scenes, and I looooooove what they did with the stage select screens. Tiny things, but they make the game stand out to me.
I also have a good deal of Nostalgia for mega man II on the game boy, but if you liked IV, try giving V a spin. Some of the bosses are a bit uninspired, but its an intriguing little outlier in terms of the series’ tropes, at least at the surface level.
You should check out my commentary in the Games Completed 2020 thread, Ix. :P I echo a lot of your thoughts here. I was really, really surprised by just how downright outstanding MMIV was. And NOBODY talks about it. But after playing it, I can say I'd definitely jump on a "Mega Man Legacy Collection 3". Imagine, they released that with all the GB games, Mega Man and Bass, and some of the oddball releases like Wily Wars and Power Fighters? Hot damn, I'd be right on board for sure.

Yo Leon, ask Capcom to do this. Use your psychic pro gamer powers.
Haha, great minds think alike! Building off what you say there:
Mega Man II and III do skew a bit more towards their original templates, but I mixes things up more in terms of the levels - like, cut mans stage is way more thematically coherent in the GB version. But all games feature unique fortress stages and boss encounters, in a similar vein to Ballade. Well Mega Man II is a slight exception I guess, in that its bonus boss is...something else.

But yeah, I'd be totally down for a third Legacy collection; put Battle and Chase and Mega Man Soccer in there! Rockman & Forte! Rockboard! Will they be any good? Probably not! But I wanna play them!

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

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I've been playing at least three or four times through Streets of Rage 4 and enjoying more and more. The most flattering thing I can say is that the developers' love for this particular series is basically oozing out of every sprite. It's so nice to have a game that commits so strongly to a basic formula that many people would consider to be "outdated" (urgh) without any dumb excuses or wheel reinventions. The combat follows the great "design by subtraction" mantra to the letter and is as simple as it is rewarding. Depth without complexity, yes please. Presentation is obviously impeccable, from some of the most beautiful spritework I've seen in years to *this* incredible soundtrack. Fantastic game, I shudder to even imagine how a lesser group of developers might have botched this one up. I wasn't a fan of the series or even the sub-genre before, but consider my interest piqued.

ESTEL DLC WHEN. Hey, at least I got a new background wallpaper.

If you like 2D action games, play this one. With the sound turned up.


In other news, I've also been playing a lot of Rocket League to make the most use out of my renewed PS+ subscription. Game is amazing! True lightning-in-a-bottle type stuff and I don't think such a refined gameplay loop will ever go out of fashion. Very nice to be able to dive into it again after all these years, especially with a curated group of friends like our wonderful local DJ!

What's not so nice of course is playing solo and encountering all the bottom-feeding trolls who feel the need to spread their toxic pestilence at every opportunity. I swallow my pride and congratulate the opponent after they've scored a particularly nice goal? Oh look, my mom's promiscuity suddenly becomes the topic of the conversation. My team takes the lead with roughly one minute left on the clock? Time for the incoherent threat spam. I let a goal through when my teammate is off doing god knows what? Obviously the scumbag will take the time to lob insults before rage-quitting. And this is all taking place in the "fun" matchmaking division, needless to say I do not have the fortitude or the patience for competitive these days.

I wanna know who's raising these people to become such antisocial little shits. Maybe we need a behavioral tax since money is the only thing people understand nowadays.

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Alex79uk
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk »

KSubzero1000 wrote: May 6th, 2020, 11:11 pmI wanna know who's raising these people to become such antisocial little shits. Maybe we need a behavioral tax since money is the only thing people understand nowadays.
Yeah, I end up muting people quite often on Rocket League. I let a goal in once and my team mate said he hoped my family got cancer. I said it's just a game, man. That made him more angry and he said I shouldn't play it online if I'm rubbish at it. This was despite me scoring the only goal for our team that match.

Anyway... I was quite pleased when I overheard my 13.5 year old playing Fortnite with his friends once (he didn't know I was listening) and the worst that came out his mouth was, "I'm on your team, you poo-hole!" :lol:

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Magical_Isopod
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Magical_Isopod »

Alex79uk wrote: May 7th, 2020, 12:11 am
KSubzero1000 wrote: May 6th, 2020, 11:11 pmI wanna know who's raising these people to become such antisocial little shits. Maybe we need a behavioral tax since money is the only thing people understand nowadays.
Yeah, I end up muting people quite often on Rocket League. I let a goal in once and my team mate said he hoped my family got cancer. I said it's just a game, man. That made him more angry and he said I shouldn't play it online if I'm rubbish at it. This was despite me scoring the only goal for our team that match.

Anyway... I was quite pleased when I overheard my 13.5 year old playing Fortnite with his friends once (he didn't know I was listening) and the worst that came out his mouth was, "I'm on your team, you poo-hole!" :lol:
This is going to sound absolutely wild, but your username came up in a dream I had last night. I think it was the name of a nuclear bomb? But I asked myself in the dream, "Is he Alex, born 1979 in the UK, or model 79uk of the Alex series of drones?" I thought that amusing to share.

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