Whatcha Been Playing?

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andthenweplay
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by andthenweplay »

I received a copy of the Seiken Densetsu 3 (Remake) or Trials of Mana for Christmas and I have been having a blast with it. Not sure why but it reminds of a a Kirby game or a Yoshi game. Playing Trials of Mana just fills me with a overwhelming amount of joy similar to those games. Defiantly has some rough areas for sure but it is defiantly worth a look if you want a really fun and colourful action game.

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Feirsteax
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Feirsteax »

Started playing Immortals: Fenyx Rising the other night. I received a voucher or two for Christmas which i converted into Xbox credit and thought I'd give this a go.
It seemed like it'd be up my street since I was in the mood for an open world BotW-alike.

So far I've played about 5 or 6 hours and I'm rather enjoying it! Hard to tell this early into my experience wether or not it will have lasting appeal, but it's got me sucked into the world already.

It's mechanics are mostly ripped from Breath of the Wild, similar to how Genshin Impact did it earlier in the year (which I also really loved, despite only being able to play on mobile), but it's unique enough so that it doesn't feel like a carbon copy.

Everything seems really polished and all the mechanics fit together very well so I'm having a good time so far.
The best thing about it is the gorgeous open world which is a joy to explore, look at, and play in.

Eager to play more!

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Miririn
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Miririn »

Bad gaming start to 2021 because I keep switching from one game to another and not being able to settle on anything. I tried (for the third time!) to get into The Witcher 3 by playing about five hours and I couldn't. I have listened to so many brilliant, knowledgeable and passionate reviewers and podcasters on this game and their love for it really makes me want to like it and I keep saying that this time I'll give it a chance but... I always end up turning it off. I just hate how floaty and light everything feels and the text floating above all the NPCs and how smooth and weird all the pretty people look - which I know are stupid reasons to take against a game, especially when this is meant to be one of the best story-driven games of the decade and story-driven games are my favourite. So many friends with really good taste keep telling me to stick with it. I looked into reasons other people dislike it and apparently I might have better luck if I turn the HUD off and adjust the movement settings, so I'll have a go doing that. I think I just have terrible taste, unfortunately.

Played a few hours of BioShock Infinite and couldn't stick with that either. I loved the world-building and the concept, but as with "The Witcher" I wasn't enjoying the combat (it felt sort of... light and like it lacked impact? I'm probably not explaining it well) and had difficulty seeing enemies (who also all felt pretty generic). I also think I'm meant to be developing sweet protective impulses towards Elizabeth but I spent the entire time being anoyed by her and her weird Disney Princess face and voice. ...which is uncharitable and maybe shows I shouldn't play games when I'm feeling grumpy. It's a relatively short game and people love it so I should probably at least try to finish it.

I want to get out of this rut so I'm thinking of replaying an old favourite or playing something really generic but competent (you know, "podcast on in the background" sort of thing) just to get me back on track, and then I'll try "The Witcher 3" and "BioShock Infinite" again. Maybe I'm just in a weird mood.

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Scrustle
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Scrustle »

Recently I've been playing some Shining Resonance Refrain. I have had a bit of curiosity about this game since it's from a long running series that hasn't been released outside of Japan for a very long time. So with this first entry we've seen in forever, this piqued my interest as a sort of forbidden fruit, wanting to see what exactly we've been missing out on all this time. After playing it for a while, it seems we haven't been missing much. So far it seems like a completely fine JRPG. Pretty generic and inoffensive. Full of all the expected cliches and tropes, and with combat that is similar to the Tales games, although perhaps simplified in comparison. Usually the kind of thing that puts me off pretty hard, but so far I haven't found it to be particularly off-putting in any way. It's just okay. I don't plan to give up on it yet, but I highly doubt I'm going to see this through.

Also tried giving Brutal Legend another stab. I originally got this game when it first came out, but I've never managed to finish it, despite giving it several attempts over the years. It's a shame, since I love the world and a lot of the concepts it goes for. This time yet again I'm finding a lot of it hard to get on with, but I'm trying to stick it out to the end finally. The hack and slash gameplay isn't great. It feels really clunky and shallow. And the RTS stuff isn't good either. Strategy games are completely not my thing at the best of times, but I get the impression here it's not a good example of it either. A lot of the time during battles I don't feel like I know what's going on. Can't tell if I'm winning or losing, if what I'm doing is the right idea, and it's often hard to tell between your own units and the enemy. Trying to command individual units is a pain as well. It's not clear what units you can command at any one time, and the controls are extremely unintuitive. And when the single player campaign is basically a huge tutorial on how to use the mechanics, it doesn't seem like it does a good job at that either. It introduces you to stuff in isolated cases, so you don't get a good idea what each new ability is useful for, and with the game more usually being structured as an open world action game, you aren't given any opportunity to practice these mechanics outside of the major story battles.

But I can't help but root for the game as a love letter to heavy metal though. The setting is great, the soundtrack is brilliant, and it really gets the vibe and attitude of the genre down in a way that feels like a good natured parody. All the little touches are very amusing, as well as having loads of real musicians of the genre playing characters.

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ReprobateGamer
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by ReprobateGamer »

As it's number is up on Gamepass, I downloaded My Friend Pedro last night

As I suspected, this game is probably better viewed watching someone else complete S-Rank runs than my attempts last night. It plays as bloody platform shooter homage to action sequences. You could go through the levels slowly edging forward and shooting the bad guy a little at a time. Or you could dive through the window onto a handy hook, using it as a zipline as you spin aroundavoiding bullets as it descends, guns akimbo and a trail of devastation in your wake.

The side on framing and the 2.5D nature does make it feel sometimes as if enemies offscreen have a far better view of my character than I do of them and the graphics could make things a little clearer - for instance, you are able to kick items to dispatch enemies but some of those items are not as apparent as they could be, at least until you walk over them.

I like it despite it's flaws but have accepted that this is not a game I'm going to master ...

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duskvstweak
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by duskvstweak »

I've gone back to Fallout: New Vegas. I had been having fun with the main game a bit ago, and then picked up the DLC, but somewhere in the middle of Old World Blues, I started having regret because I wasn't enjoying it as much as I had been just wandering the wastes. So, during the weekend, I went back, finished the super talkey OWBs and broke free to go back to the main game. I probably did myself a disservice with the DLC, but I was in love when I bought it but I wasn't ready for it. I should have waited until I was done with the main game. Oh well, at least now I'm over-leveled and over-equipped!

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Jon Cheetham
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Jon Cheetham »

Been re-playing Dark Souls Remastered on Switch and Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin on PS4.

Was wanting some cosy gaming experiences especially on Switch, I played A Short Hike on pc as I got it from either EGS or the BLM bundle, but decided it would be nice to play handheld. It is one of the best designed open worlds ever. Just happens to be tiny!

Also got Moonlighter in the Switch sale, which is a game where you dungeon-delve by night and sell the loot in your shop by day. It doesn't appear to have the complexity of a Stardew Valley where the shop management is concerned, but I actually love its simple loop and am very happy with it for the time being. The soundtrack is also top tier.

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Alex79uk
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk »

Jon Cheetham wrote: January 5th, 2021, 7:52 amWas wanting some cosy gaming experiences especially on Switch
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.

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Jon Cheetham
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Jon Cheetham »

Alex79uk wrote: January 5th, 2021, 9:26 am
Jon Cheetham wrote: January 5th, 2021, 7:52 amWas wanting some cosy gaming experiences especially on Switch
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Yoku's Island Express.
Hmm might be a couple of good recommendations in that list :lol: cheers Alex, it's regularly on sale so I'll check it out next time.

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Truk_Kurt
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Truk_Kurt »

I second this recommendation, in my top 10 games of the last gen.

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Alex79uk
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk »

Truk_Kurt wrote: January 5th, 2021, 9:51 am I second this recommendation, in my top 10 games of the last gen.
You'll have to 13th it.

I 1st to 12th'd it.

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Sinclair Gregstrum
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Sinclair Gregstrum »

I'll 14th it - loved that game!

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Jon Cheetham
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Jon Cheetham »

Just tried 30 minutes of Supergiant’s previous title Pyre after WFH today, and it is really weird and beautiful and a bit brilliant. It’s a visual novel, with predictably splendid art by Jen Zee, punctuated with this sort of high fantasy, semi-turn-based Basketball game where you have to bounce an orb into the opposing team’s pyre. It’s quite tricky but really fun when you pull it off. And then you go back to the visual novel and some caravan management, a bit like The Banner Saga.

They’ve talked about why they didn’t port this to Switch, a lot of work and they wanted to move onto Hades (and nothing should stand in the way of a) a team like this following their creative urges and b) the existence of Hades), but… it would be amazing on Switch. Still a lot of fun on Steam and might be a nice one to nibble at here and there, enjoying the art, the music and a frankly fabulous, scenery chewing voiceover from Logan Cunningham.

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Feirsteax
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Feirsteax »

Continuing to sink more and more hours into Immortals: Fenyx Rising, still really loving it. Abilities for combat all feel fun to use and some have secondary utility usages outside of combat which is really cool. Just exploring the world is so engaging you could do it for hours and not notice the time fly by.
Enjoying the story despite the somewhat hit and miss comedic script, it's all well voice acted and has a load of cool moments from Greek mythology sprinkled in there which I'm enjoying a lot.
Visuals are still absolutely stunning and just keep getting better the more I explore the world, and I've barely scratched the surface tbh, only explored one "segment" of the map beyond the tutorial area. I'm sure it'll just get even more impressive the more I explore.



And continuing to play alllll the Halos, finished Halo 3 over Christmas. It absolutely flew by and was loads of fun from start to finish.
It's interesting going back and seeing how the equipment mechanic slotted into the core gameplay. I actually think the Bubble Shield was a stroke of genius, it both provides emergency cover, and temporarily alters the battleground and makes everything close quarters, so you can run into a chaotic open area, deploy it and cause some havoc. Very cool stuff.

The levels are some of the best in the series, huge epic levels that felt like journeys into alien lands. Was a big fan of The Ark and The Covenant in particular, the latter having a few segments which were full blown callbacks to CE's Assault on the Control Base which was really cool to see.

But something about the story veered a bit too far into feeling like "fan fiction", for me. There were a few moments that just felt extremely cliché and overly fan servicey that it just kind of lost me a bit. That final boss in particular felt really silly.
However on balance there were more moments that I absolutely loved in Halo 3 than moments that I cringed at, and I still think it's one of the best games in the series. Those cortana flashbacks and gravemind flashbacks are extremely annoying though. 🤣



Finally, I've dipped my toes into Halo 5's score attack mode over christmas too, while listening to audiobooks and podcasts. I'm experimenting with the difficulty and skulls to customise the difficulty and having a lot of fun with it.
It's giving me a deeper appreciation of the levels and stuff, and also highlighting some of the issues with the game. I know competent AI teammates are probably very difficult to implement, but they really can get on your nerves at times in this, especially when they take large unnecessary detours to get to your position and you end up dying and having to restart at the last checkpoint! :roll:
Still, playing once through on normal modes and then bumping to heroic with a skull or two activated after I've learned the layout and the strategies that work for that level and aiming for a massive score is lots of fun!
Had about an hour's progress completely wiped the other night though which was a real sour note, my high score and fastest times completely disappeared after spending ages on one level. Pretty flipping annoying! :?

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Truk_Kurt
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Truk_Kurt »

I'm still playing through Doom Eternal and really enjoying it, although I don't like the platforming sections much, they really frustrate me. I understand them being in there to break up the frantic pace of the game, I just wish they were better.
I finished GRIS which was as good as everyone says, to start with I thought it was just going to be an artsy game with little substance, but I was wrong as even though it's not exactly challenging, it has some nice puzzle/platforming which is fun, the score is incredible too.
I have also been playing Two Point Hospital on my PC via Game Pass. I never played Theme Hospital, so this style of management game is brand new to me and it's lots of fun. I am getting to the point where I go into each hospital scenario and go through the same routine to set things up which is a tad repetitive though, so I'm hoping future scenarios change that up a bit by maybe having the building blocks of a hospital already in place.

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ColinAlonso
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by ColinAlonso »

I'm about 15/20 hours into Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana on Switch and enjoying it quite a bit. The deserted island angle where there is just the main character and a bunch of other survivors from a shipwreck is an interesting change to the JRPG formula. I like this angle enough that I might be disappointed that these dreams with the titular Dana become relevant. The areas are like Final Fantasy XII in that they are linear with a bit of exploration to them. Combat is good action RPG fare with an attack, dodge and 4 specials (hold down R and press one of the face buttons) and a rock, paper, scissors weapon advantage/weakness system.

I got Slay the Spire on the recent Switch sale too and have completed runs for the first two characters. Its so moreish.

I fired up Streets of Rage 4 (Christmas gift) this evening on PS4 for the first time. I only intended to play a level or two but I got properly sucked in and died at the end of the fifth level I think. It feels, sounds and looks great.

More Hades runs too. I'm closing in on 20 clears. I'm starting to bump the pact of punishment up to heat level 7-8 for some weapons now. Most runs are probably too easy now and I should think of jumping to 10/12 for the bow.

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Magical_Isopod
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Magical_Isopod »

Mass Effect Andromeda, of all things. And you know what? This game is great. And I'm going to go a step further and say... I like it more than the original trilogy. Instead of Magical Space James Bond fighting Giant Space Robots, it's this really interesting premise of colonizing worlds in an entirely new galaxy, complete with all the survival difficulties and diplomacy inherent to New World expeditions. And honestly, I think it fits the universe much better.

It does have its issues - the number of sidequests could (and should) be cut in half, some plot conveniences undercut the desperation that really sells the early game, and there's definitely a lot of copy/pasting here to get the game out the door (why does every planet have the same animal species as every other?), but it's a far cry from being the "bad game" it's remembered as.

And the bugs? Playing in 2021, I really haven't seen any. I've seen a few little oddities here and there, but far fewer than most comparable open world games. It's fixed, and you should consider giving it a shot.

Had Andromeda been given enough time and adequate management, I think it would have been super well received.

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Miririn
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Miririn »

I've been playing the "Marvel's Spider-Man" DLCs, which I didn't realise would be so long and fleshed out. They're basically "more of the same stuff as in the main game but scaled down" in terms of gameplay and structure, but I liked the main game a lot, so I don't mind it too much. Not sure how I would feel if I had to pay ten pounds a pop for them, though (they came bundled with the GOTY edition of the main game for me, and I don't remember what I paid for it).

Regarding story decisions, I liked the decision to focus on three female side characters (I'm almost done with the third and final DLC - Silver Sable - now), but I was a bit wary that with Black Cat they'd enter into love triangle territory, which is almost without exception a huge, boring drag in every single iteration of Peter Parker's story. They skirted round it a bit by having MJ and Peter be a realistic but mature couple (i.e. MJ isn't totally ok with Peter spending so much time with his ex, which is realistic because she's human, but she attempts to approach the situation as an adult and there's no contrived "Peter hides the truth from MJ" drama nonsense, because they're willing to have honest conversations with each other). I've never been a particular "Spider-Man" shipper in the various films, comics or animated series, and I've never cared much about who Peter ends up with romantically, but the surprising level of emotional maturity in this version of MJ and Peter's relationship endeared them to me.

...which makes it sound like the stories of the DLCs are terribly po-faced and serious, which they aren't. They're that charming "Spider-Man" mix of light and frothy plot elements (I loved Hammerhead's minions chatting about e-readers and the importance of not littering) with darker, more melodramatic plot elements (oh Yuri...). I'm waiting impatiently for the main sequel to spend more time with the heavy hitters (I demand Goblin shenanigans!) but I was happy with the characters in these DLCs and using DLCs to explore the stories of lesser known villains and allies is a good way to bring the world to life and make it seem more like the comics.

Gameplay is fun - swinging is still glorious. Sometimes I just make Spidey climb to the top of Avengers Tower so he can dive right down to street level and swing up just before hitting the ground. Movement in this feels so dynamic and fun that I am willing to forgive more frustrating elements (like how difficult it can be to get Spidey to stick to and unstick from walls with precision).

I have to admit to not being the biggest fan of some of the Screwball challenges (for the "gadget challenges" I would just spam R1 to end them as quickly as possible), and the bomb challenges just stressed me out. But clearing bases, fighting mooks, boss fights - all the same stuff from the main game is still irresistable to me in that I love how the fights look and feel chaotic but they're not so chaotic that you can't strategise and you always have an idea of what you're doing and where you are in the midst of all the carnage. There have been some improvements to smaller aspects of gameplay too: for example, using the spider drones (or bots or whatever they're called) to eavesdrop in bars is more fun than using them to disarm bombs.

As in the main game, playing as Spidey's non-powered allies to do stealth missions is hit and miss. In the first game I loved it when it meant exploring the lore (...I'm a Spidey fan so the story is as important to me as the gameplay). I loved exploring Osborn's penthouse. It's less fun when you're MJ peeping behind boxes to try and find stacks of weapons to photograph. I really hope if they keep these segments in the sequel they use them for world-building and lore rather than infiltrating generic villain hideouts to retrieve some random McGuffin.

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Magical_Isopod
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Magical_Isopod »

ColinAlonso wrote: January 5th, 2021, 10:38 pm I'm about 15/20 hours into Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana on Switch and enjoying it quite a bit. The deserted island angle where there is just the main character and a bunch of other survivors from a shipwreck is an interesting change to the JRPG formula. I like this angle enough that I might be disappointed that these dreams with the titular Dana become relevant. The areas are like Final Fantasy XII in that they are linear with a bit of exploration to them. Combat is good action RPG fare with an attack, dodge and 4 specials (hold down R and press one of the face buttons) and a rock, paper, scissors weapon advantage/weakness system.
As someone who'd put Ys VIII in his Top 5 JRPGs ever list, I will absolutely guarantee you, survival is a core theme of this game and when the two plotlines start to intermingle, you'll have some "woah" plot moments. It's seriously one of the best stories I've seen in gaming.

Marlew
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Marlew »

I picked up the Space Invaders Forever collection on the Japanese eShop for half-price. Still cost me £25 and it's a bit of a rip but Space Invaders Extreme is pretty much worth it for me on a generous day. I scarcely have the energy or patience for games these days, my day-to-day life has been exponentially fucked by Covid-19, but Space Invaders is simplistic enough and fundamentally satisfying enough to scratch a certain itch. I do really love the busy 90s Dreamcast shit 3D background aesthetic to Extreme and the layers of scoring bollocks are fun when they kick in beyond my ken.

Aside from that, games feel like a past life right now.

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