Whatcha Been Playing?

This is where you can deliberate anything relating to videogames - past, present and future.
User avatar
DeadpoolNegative
Member
Posts: 44
Joined: April 16th, 2015, 3:00 am

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by DeadpoolNegative » August 25th, 2019, 11:54 pm

Superman Returns- I played and beat this over a decade ago for the PlayStation 2 and remember enjoying it despite its reputation, and I found a cheap copy of of it at NJ Gamer Con. So let's give it another go.

There was a very good Polygon article about the troubled development of this game a few years back. EA Tiburon, the Madden guys, is the developer. And after this, they remained the Madden guys. When you read the article you learn a lot about the restrictions DC put on them, and the time spent working on it that resulted in a lot of the story by Marv Wolfman being thrown out. Also, Superman Returns the film was shrouded in such secrecy they didn't get a full look at the script.

But Tiburon did have a couple good ideas here, mainly that since Superman is so powerful, instead of him having a health bar, they give the city of Metropolis a health bar, and when Metallo and other villains attack the city, or fires or other disasters happen, you have to prevent them. But the more people get hurt, and the more the city gets wrecked, the more that health bar goes down. Metropolis is a vast, multilevel affair, and there's a nice, tranquil simplicity to just flying around- I do think as I did back in 2008 this game really gets the flying right. THere's a good amount of combos and various uses for heat vision, ice breath, and super-breath, though like me you may just find yourself using the same combos over and over since they work.

The problem becomes there's not too much to do- either you fight fires or fight bad guys, basically. Mr. Mxyptlk has some races to send Superman on. There are stretches- not long stretches, but they FEEL long since the city is so empty- where you're just waiting to get a signal to do one of those menial tasks to push the XP bar forward and advance the story as well. And the story is piecemeal- it awkwardly jumps between storylines with Metallo and Mongul (who shows up in a new scene taking place before the events of the movie, which I found near impossible to beat way back when but pretty easy now), and parts of the movie. The film's cast lent their likenesses and voices to the game, though Kate Bosworth looks and sounds off. I was really disappointed with Routh's performance- the script by Flint Dille and Wolfman doesn't give him much to work with, true, but he delivers lines in the same stilted stuffed shirt style he did in Superman Returns. Considering how much better Routh has been in... well, pretty much every thing he's done since Superman Returns, I'm gonna lay this one at the feet of Warner Bros and Bryan Singer.

Spider-Man 2 set a standard in 2004 that Superhero open world games have struggled to match, and this game is a prime example of that struggle. It was likely time Also, this game's graphics are sooooooo 2006 it hurts. Metropolis from afar looks weirdly blue green and there's a lot of pop-in. Especially annoying is when you have to take an injured citizen to an ambluance and the game specifies one far away but the game's lack of model variety usually means there's an ambulance RIGHT THERE.

And yet, I enjoy playing this game and will likely press on...

Spider-Man 2- speaking of, I've been playing the XBox version of this and I Cannot, I repeat CANNOT- turn off Doc Ock's crazy machine. Can anyone help me out with this? Also, this game is probably the only example of a movie tie in adding something- mainly the Black Cat plot- that actually enhances the movie's storyline (since it helps Peter sort out his feelings for Mary Jane).

Snpier Elite 4- free on PlayStation Plus this month, I only just got around to trying it. I played through and enjoyed Sniper Elite V2 for the 360, though I had to laugh at the game's over the top ending and hints at a Cold War set sequel, which never materialized. I was really impressed with, in a sad, inner 13 year old way, the whole bullets crashing into bones and organs effects that Rebellion Developments seems to have way too much fun crafting.

Set in Italy in 1943, the downmarket BJ Blazkowicz that is Karl Fairburne is back and ready to kill some Nazis. In V2 the levels felt linear- here it's a lot more like Hitman and I approve of the change. I found myself on an island off the coast of Italy filled with little targets and goals to take out. The main one was a high ranking Nazi officer who of course has intel. But there were also four other Nazi officers to take out, a checkpoint to clear, and Nazi propaganda cameras to destroy. While I wouldn't exactly call it variety- there are also an absurd amount of collectibles to grab- what I appreciated about it was that it gave me plenty of goals to think about as a navigated the terrain and made my way towards the main target.

The game is fairly challenging for me on even the Casual difficulty, which surprised me but didn't bother me too much, because the game's stealth mechanics so far are fairly solid. Nothing particularly earth shattering or innovative, but it plays fair with its surroundings and what the player and enemies can or can't see.

But we're really here for the gross, gory effects, and the game delivers. Shooting in this game feels very tactile and solid, and you feel every crunch the bullet cam slaps onto the screen. It's so... satisfying to pull off a long shot, or pull it off without having to hold your breath (more XP for me!). What I found myself doing surprisingly often is waiting for soldiers to get into the vicinity of cars and trucks and gas canisters so I can shoot them and blow them up. Even better, there are now environmental kills- shooting a load of bricks that just happens to be hanging above a busy street or shooting out support beams on a platform.

The Council- damn you and your sales, Microsoft. I initially passed on this Telltale-alike from developer Big Bad Wolf. I was kind of annoyed that the voice actors for the main character and his mother were American when the characters were clearly French- in fact the voice actor of the main character, Louis, while not giving a bad performance, felt really off and not suited for the material. But I was continually intrigued by what I heard about the conversation mechanics. Big Bad Wolf has hit on some fascinating mechanics, and when they offered the first episode for a little over a buck, I gave it a shot. I was hooked enough after the first episode to buy the season pass, and here we are.

What are the mechanics, you might say? Well, you can choose Louis' background and interests at the start. Politics, subterfuge, knowledge of the occult, psychological warfare, even agility- all of these abilities can be used to navigate the game's world and its characters. One skill might be effective in learning something from a particularly tricky subject- but that may mean you won't have the ability later to unlock a box containing power ups. Or one skill will cause the person you've having a conversation with to avoid the question.

Your abilities come with a price- Louis has a limited amount of focus to use these special traits, and depending on how much experience you have, and how many points you have put in will affect what you have to win or lose a confrontation.

The Council is not simply a game of "X Will remember that", Big Bad Wolf is trying to make the experience more, well, playable. And that's what drew me to the game. There are some mildly interesting puzzles and plenty of wandering around the big island estate where the game takes place, but the conversations between Louis de Richet and the personalities he meets is the meat. Initially the Council is thrilling in that regard.

Then something goes horribly, terribly wrong.

Let's finally talk about the story: Louis De Richet and his mother Sarah are members of the Golden Order, a secret society based out of France that collects occult artifacts. When Louis' mother goes missing in the early 1790s, he finds himself summoned to the island manor of the mysterious Lord Mortimer where she was last seen. Sarah de Richet was supposed to cast a vote for the Council, a sect of world leaders and movers and shakers from Europe and the United states that include some dude named Napoleon Bonaparte (whose actor speaks with a French accent) and George Washington, you know, that President guy. Louis finds himself embroiled in not only the fate of his mother but the Council's desire to manipulate world events for mankind's own good. The lovely duchess Emily Hillsborrow (a VERY Good Bibi Jones- the voice acting is fine in general but she stands out) has eyes for Louis, and he has eyes for her. Too bad he keeps having visions of his mother shooting her. And there's that strange girl with her head shaved that looks like the long lost daughter of John Adams...

For the first three chapters, I was hooked. Louis' continual descent into the bizarre world of the Council has a lot of intrigue and the characters are very interesting, despite the fact that the character models are all hyper-detailed (except for the smooth skinned Emily) and look like overly busy Todd McFarlane drawings. Lord Mortimer isn't an eccentric that dabbles in the occult who has a lot of rich friends- he's a man who's trying to manipulate the fate of nations, with Washington and others as his beneficiaries. At times it kind of felt what it must be like to be the Templars in the Assassin's Creed series- SHOULD people choose their own fate, or does this chaotic world need shaping by the "Right" people?

But then episode 4 happens and
Spoiler: show
Lord Mortimer turns out not just to be all powerful but a literal fallen angel that left heaven after Lucifer's rebellion against God. And the snotty British dude who opposes him in the council? Another angel, and his brother. Not only that, but Lord Mortimer is your father! Not only that, he's also Emily Hillsborrow's father, so if you pursued a romance with her, you've been fucking your sister. Not only THAT but those visions you've been having? since Louis is the sire of a Daemon, you can actually take possession of people's bodies. Oh, and the only way to stop Mortimer is to stab him with the spear that was named into the side of Christ on the cross. To quote Vanessa from the Square Roots podcast: WHAT. WHAT. WHAAAAAAT.
This turn of events completely shattered the mood the game built up to that point. Despite some seeds for it being sown in earlier chapters, it was just too much for me and flattened all the nuance the game was building towards. A real shame, since Big Bad Wolf's heart was in the right place. I would really love to see them tackle this again, with a different genre and setting, though I'm not sure how well the game sold.

--Dan

User avatar
Chopper
Member
Posts: 1321
Joined: April 16th, 2013, 4:35 pm
Location: Ireland

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Chopper » August 26th, 2019, 7:02 am

Man, two The Council posts on one page; I’m in heaven!

I enjoyed your spoiler section immensely, Dan. Everybody else - don’t read the spoiler but rush out and buy the game, which is incredibly cheap right now :D

Great summary of the game, glad you enjoyed the first half at least. The events you described made a bit of an impresssion on me but I was happy to roll with it:
me wrote:There were a few points in the late game where I felt a little bit railroaded, as I guess the game was giving me a second chance to consider my big decisions, by making me spend time with the opposite view. There were also a few places where you have to swallow your disbelief, but overall it's a very accomplished piece of work.
:P

Edit: by the way, Big Bad Wolf have been taken under Paradox’s wing, and are working on ‘a narrative RPG in the Vampire the Masquerade universe,’ so we will hopefully see something more from them.

User avatar
Alex79uk
Member
Posts: 5537
Joined: September 2nd, 2012, 10:36 am
Location: Walsall, UK.
Contact:

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk » August 26th, 2019, 7:12 am

DeadpoolNegative wrote:
August 25th, 2019, 11:54 pm
Snpier Elite 4- free on PlayStation Plus this month, I only just got around to trying it. I played through and enjoyed Sniper Elite V2 for the 360, though I had to laugh at the game's over the top ending and hints at a Cold War set sequel, which never materialized. I was really impressed with, in a sad, inner 13 year old way, the whole bullets crashing into bones and organs effects that Rebellion Developments seems to have way too much fun crafting.
Yeah I tried this the other night. Looked very impressive and was as smooth as silk to play. I ended up playing the first level and thought "yeah, I see what this is", and immediately deleted it. Not that I didn't enjoy it, I thought it was quite fun. I just knew I wasn't going to commit to finishing it and once I'd got the measure of it just thought that if I'm stealthing around I'd rather be playing MGSV or Hitman, neither of which I've played more than an hour or so of! I may go back to it one day, but given the huge backlog, it seems unlikely.

User avatar
Stanshall
Member
Posts: 1821
Joined: January 31st, 2016, 5:45 am

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Stanshall » August 26th, 2019, 3:06 pm

Having recently got my Wii firing again, I've been playing a couple of deep cuts one or two of you guys might have stumbled across:

Super Mario Galaxy

I'm about halfway through and every minute of this is such a pleasure. The ambient music and sound design add so much to this, it's so lonely at times, and melancholic, twinkling away, and then you arrive at a new planet and suddenly it's all trumpets parping away joyously and squidgy basslines, then the next minute you're soaring through the skies and the strings are swooping and carrying you along. It's a genuine work of genius before we even get to the feel of the thing.

This is the essence of Mario for me. This is what I think of when I think about Mario. The 2D games are fantastic but something else entirely. 64 is brilliant but the camera is a bit quirky to entirely forget about it. Odyssey has a tremendous highlight reel but quite a lot of filler. Galaxy is about 95% solid brilliance. To offer the only criticisms I can think of, some of the comet stars are a bit frustrating. One or two of the motion type minigame stars are a bit hard because of the controls. The hub is a bit more straightforward in Galaxy 2. That's all I got. I'm also playing via the VC:

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

Never finished this as a kid. Never finished it on the 3DS. Maybe maybe I've got past Death Mountain but I can't remember it. Until I played it on the 3DS, I didn't even know about the Temple of Time concept. Honestly. Anyway, I've restarted this and I'm very very much enjoying it, not least for the wonderful music (again). Only just got onto Hyrule Field and although it obviously doesn't have the same impact it did in '98, there is a grand sense of adventure to the whole affair which sweeps you along. Will I get there this time? I dunno. I recently restarted the original Tomb Raider on the PS Classic and I got about halfway through, really enjoying it, but then dropped it because I started relying on save states to balance out the time wasting sudden deaths. I think this is much better, more tightly designed so should avoid that'd kind of thing but we'll see how it goes. Thrilled to be in this little world again, though. The dawn music...

User avatar
stvnorman
Member
Posts: 522
Joined: March 19th, 2013, 7:09 pm
Location: Keysoe, Bedfordshire, UK
Contact:

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by stvnorman » August 27th, 2019, 7:07 am

Stanshall wrote:
August 26th, 2019, 3:06 pm
Only just got onto Hyrule Field and although it obviously doesn't have the same impact it did in '98, there is a grand sense of adventure to the whole affair which sweeps you along.
That's exactly what kept me going when I played it on 3DS last year - lying in bed thinking about what you've done and what to do next is always the sign of a game worth seeing through!

On a completely opposite note, I’ve been playing Detroit. I really liked the first chapter with its future-CSI vibes, but since then I’ve been collecting packages and cleaning houses and if it doesn’t pick up again soon it will go the way of every other David Cage game I’ve ever played!

Also gone back to two games I’ve started many times but never finished. I’m about half way through Super Mario Land 2 on Game Boy. It doesn’t have the nostalgia to me of the first, but it ramps up just about everything that did. Except the difficulty maybe. Really fun though.

The other game is Castlevania Symphony of the Night on PS4. My preference will always be for the more linear Castlevanias, but my recent obsession with the Konami Collection prompted me to persevere this time, and by treating it as more of an RPG than on previous attempts, I think it’s clicking a bit more than before. Spending some real time with it has also made me realise it has one of the best soundtracks I’ve ever heard!

Lastly, I am over the moon to have finally come first on the Sega Ages Virtua Racing Medium track on the default arcade settings. I wasn’t expecting to have to spend over 20 hours getting into the top 250 on the global leaderboard in order to do so though! Absolutely love this game all the same - I used to play the Mega Drive version with my brother so have some history, but with this Switch release it’s definitely crept into my top 50 games ever.

User avatar
Suits
Member
Posts: 2670
Joined: October 28th, 2015, 2:25 pm
Location: Chelmsford, UK

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Suits » August 27th, 2019, 12:31 pm

Stanshall wrote:
August 26th, 2019, 3:06 pm
Having recently got my Wii firing again...
Approved.

User avatar
DomsBeard
Member
Posts: 3296
Joined: September 2nd, 2012, 3:03 pm
Location: Doms Chin

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by DomsBeard » August 27th, 2019, 3:14 pm

Generation Zero

It has always been on my pick up when cheaper or when on Game Pass list for a while as it looked interesting. Lo and behold it appears for free on Xbox Live for the weekend so downloaded straight away.

I had a good couple of hours but ultimately I deleted it before the weekend was up. The setting is good (think Everybody's Gone to the rapture in Sweden) with some combat. The atmosphere is good as the world feels abandoned much like Rapture and you are piecing together what happened. Ultimately I struggled with the combat as I was playing alone and was then downed I had to respawn at a ''safe house'' which was usually another 10 minutes back from where I died. If there was more than 2 enemies it was pretty much game over. This 100% needs to be played with friends.

Dino Crisis 2

Played for 30 minutes and feel like I have already shot more dinosaurs than I did in the entirety of the original. Everything just seems dialled up to 11 whether it is the running, shooting and music.

A Way Out

Have started playing this with the Mrs and had an absolute blast with it. It is pretty simple but pretty much 99% of our cock ups have been due to not working together. I'm pretty sure it is on sale on Xbox right now too so would recommend.

User avatar
Chopper
Member
Posts: 1321
Joined: April 16th, 2013, 4:35 pm
Location: Ireland

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Chopper » August 29th, 2019, 11:19 am

DomsBeard wrote:
August 27th, 2019, 3:14 pm
Generation Zero

It has always been on my pick up when cheaper or when on Game Pass list for a while as it looked interesting. Lo and behold it appears for free on Xbox Live for the weekend so downloaded straight away.

I had a good couple of hours but ultimately I deleted it before the weekend was up. The setting is good (think Everybody's Gone to the rapture in Sweden) with some combat. The atmosphere is good as the world feels abandoned much like Rapture and you are piecing together what happened. Ultimately I struggled with the combat as I was playing alone and was then downed I had to respawn at a ''safe house'' which was usually another 10 minutes back from where I died. If there was more than 2 enemies it was pretty much game over. This 100% needs to be played with friends.
Man, that's a pity. This has been on my radar for a while, and the reviews I read didn't really satisfy me as to why it was a bad game (despite universal condemnation) so I had a sneaking suspicion I would like it. Sad to hear, it looked really promising. Would playing it on Easy (if possible) work?

*Doesn't remove from watch list quite yet* (I'm stubborn!)
ColinAlonso wrote:
August 23rd, 2019, 8:41 pm
Dicey Dungeons is a clever little game. Each run involves going through 5 levels of enemies and a boss and each (successful) run takes up to an hour. Battles involve rolling dice and using them to power your ability cards. Abilities can do a number of things aside from attacking including inflicting status effects, adding a shield, duplicating dice, raising or lowering the value of dice etc. The abilities that affect dice mean you're not stuck with the original roll and each turn can become quite involved. The five characters I've unlocked so far each have their own difficulty, but that's due to each having a different playstyle. The first, the warrior, can reroll dice but then it get more complicated from there. The robot can roll dice up to the value of his CPU, if he lands on the total he gets to choose a special move, if he goes over he cannot use any moves. During his run you can obtain abilities that play around with that system a bit too. I've unlocked the subsequent episodes for the first 5 characters but I'm still trying to complete the witch's first episode so its early days yet. The soundtrack is a funky chiptune banger.
Struggling to spend any time gaming this week, as I'm just not feeling it, but I started this today and it looks pretty good. I think I might try and finish each campaign (eg complete the Warrior levels before moving onto Thief etc), rather than trying out all the characters like you are doing, otherwise I'll get confused. Then again, the later levels for each char are probably rock hard.

Edit: Ah, I see that's actually not possible, and you have to play through as each character first to unlock the episodes.

*****

I haven't done much else this week; I've had a look at the card collecting/loot box mode for Out of the Park Baseball, which I have resisted till now (this is its second year). It consists of opening packs and using them to put together a team, which is entered in a league and a fixture simmed every 30 mins. It really is pay to win - I just played and with my crappy team, beat (via the vagaries of baseball) a team that had all 90s-rated players - and the alternative is a gradual accumulation of points with which to buy more cards, which is what I am doing. I have two teams on the go and they are in a preliminary league. I'll get placed into a proper league on Monday depending on my results, so I'll monitor the situation and see what happens.

The temptation is definitely there to invest $20 and see if I can power up the league.

User avatar
duskvstweak
Member
Posts: 645
Joined: August 23rd, 2017, 4:40 pm
Location: New York
Contact:

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by duskvstweak » August 29th, 2019, 1:31 pm

World of Warcraft Classic.

I didn't couldn't afford/manage to keep playing it back in 2006 after only a few months of playing, so I've been waiting for something like this. There's definitely the nostalgia factor, but I'm enjoying it for other reasons as well. Will probably take up most of my gaming time for a bit, hopefully I can start Dead Cells soon, but I gotta let this fever run its course.

User avatar
Alex79uk
Member
Posts: 5537
Joined: September 2nd, 2012, 10:36 am
Location: Walsall, UK.
Contact:

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk » August 30th, 2019, 6:33 pm

I decided to download the Epic Games Store to my ancient laptop this evening seeing as I had it out anyway. I was jealous of all these brilliant indie games they keep giving away. To my amazement, it is running Celeste flawlessly! I'm so pleased, been wanting to play this for ages! Tried the first chapter and it's great. Kicking myself for not grabbing Hyper Light Drifter the other month now.

User avatar
chase210
Member
Posts: 901
Joined: June 3rd, 2013, 9:22 am

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by chase210 » August 31st, 2019, 11:00 am

Astral Chain is flipping brilliant.

User avatar
Stanshall
Member
Posts: 1821
Joined: January 31st, 2016, 5:45 am

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Stanshall » August 31st, 2019, 11:19 am

So far, it seems like all the great stuff from Platinum games without the filler and longueurs.

User avatar
Chopper
Member
Posts: 1321
Joined: April 16th, 2013, 4:35 pm
Location: Ireland

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Chopper » August 31st, 2019, 12:08 pm

Dicey Dungeons. It's weird, I find something about it a bit offputting but don't know what it is. I'm leaning towards a combination of the Dad Joke writing and Spongebob art style.

At the same time, it is quite 'one more turn'-ish.

Just got to the boss of Episode 4 with the Warrior, it could not have gone better for me up to that point, full health and all, and then got destroyed by the Scathach. Yes, burn all my dice on every single turn, thanks!

User avatar
Scrustle
Member
Posts: 1932
Joined: November 18th, 2012, 5:02 pm

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Scrustle » August 31st, 2019, 7:50 pm

Played the first three chapters of Astral Chain, so some first impressions. So far it is pretty interesting, and has some very cool ideas that can be very fun, but it's got some rough edges and is kind of hard to get your head around.

It's immediately apparent that this is very different from Bayonetta and the likes. Instead of having the wealth of different combos and weapons that game does, here you are very limited in your basic attacks and arsenal. You only have one basic combo string, and the control scheme is very odd. Attacks on the triggers, and dodge on B, so it requires some relearning of the hard-baked muscle memory of Bayo. The focus of the gameplay is clearly in a very different place. The core of the combat is using your character and Legion familiar to set up situations to exploit, and then syncing up attacks with them when you've got an enemy where you want them. It's a very different feel to how this genre usually is, and it's a big shock to the system. Sometimes it can feel pretty overwhelming and confusing, trying to wrangle your Legion around moving enemies, while trying to avoid their attacks yourself. The camera isn't the best either, and things can be hard to keep track of at 30fps too. But when you're on top of things and really in sync and pulling off some cool stuff, it's really satisfying, and there's nothing quite like it. It feels very cool to toy around with an enemy and trade blows between yourself and your Legion. So far though I feel like that hasn't been happening as much as I'd like, especially with bosses. But I get the feeling this game isn't one that you can really immediately understand, and that it's designed around multiple playthroughs where the first run is almost more of a tutorial.

The aesthetic and narrative side of things are something of a mixed bag. Visually it's pretty impressive and the world design is really cool. The neon futuristic cyberpunk city looks great, and has a very Ghost in the Shell feel to it, and the Astral Plane otherworld areas are very striking too. The soundtrack is a very diverse mix of different genres, with many tracks evoking a lot of other things. Nier, Deus Ex, GitS, and even NFS: World in parts. The characters however, have left a lot to be desired. Although strangely, the more central the characters are, the worse they seem to be. A couple of the secondary background characters have some appealing designs to them and some quirky character traits, but the main characters are quite dull and cliched. They're not exactly badly designed visually, but just feel very standard anime and not original in any way. And strangely for a genre that usually revels in protagonists that are larger-than-life caricatures, here they are silent. I presume because there's a character creator, but I don't really get why. It feels like the default looks are the canon appearance, so changing that feels sort of pointless. While your character's sibling does get a lot of dialogue, they are just a messy pile of angsty anime cliches. There's this one cutscene at the end of chapter 3 where it seems like they're trying to squeeze the most cliches in to a 10 second stretch as they possibly can. I think I can tell exactly what their arc is going to be already.

So right now I'm quite liking the gameplay on a conceptual level, and can see the potential that there is to this system, but I'm still trying to get the hang of it. So I'm eager to see where that goes and want to get to a point where I can mine out that potential. I like the world too and want to see more of that. But I'm not expecting much from the story or characters.

User avatar
KSubzero1000
Member
Posts: 2848
Joined: August 26th, 2015, 7:56 pm
Location: Germany

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by KSubzero1000 » August 31st, 2019, 7:53 pm

Scrustle wrote:
August 31st, 2019, 7:50 pm
things can be hard to keep track of at 30fps
Can you comment on potential framerate differences between docked and handheld mode? Or is it locked 30fps across the board?

User avatar
Scrustle
Member
Posts: 1932
Joined: November 18th, 2012, 5:02 pm

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Scrustle » August 31st, 2019, 8:00 pm

KSubzero1000 wrote:
August 31st, 2019, 7:53 pm
Scrustle wrote:
August 31st, 2019, 7:50 pm
things can be hard to keep track of at 30fps
Can you comment on potential framerate differences between docked and handheld mode? Or is it locked 30fps across the board?
I've only played docked so far, it's just limited to 30. There have been a few dips when there's been a high number of enemies on screen too, but nothing disastrous so far.

User avatar
KSubzero1000
Member
Posts: 2848
Joined: August 26th, 2015, 7:56 pm
Location: Germany

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by KSubzero1000 » August 31st, 2019, 8:03 pm

Okay, thanks for the clarification!

User avatar
ColinAlonso
Member
Posts: 300
Joined: September 6th, 2016, 7:13 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by ColinAlonso » August 31st, 2019, 8:03 pm

Chopper wrote:
August 31st, 2019, 12:08 pm
Dicey Dungeons. It's weird, I find something about it a bit offputting but don't know what it is. I'm leaning towards a combination of the Dad Joke writing and Spongebob art style.

At the same time, it is quite 'one more turn'-ish.

Just got to the boss of Episode 4 with the Warrior, it could not have gone better for me up to that point, full health and all, and then got destroyed by the Scathach. Yes, burn all my dice on every single turn, thanks!
I wouldn't quite describe the style as Spongebob-ish, but I can see why people would fall either side of liking it or not.

My gaming time has been quite limited for the last week and a half (and I think it will be that way for the next few weeks too) so I'm only on the second episodes. Oddly the Robot's (3-star difficulty) episode 2 was much harder than the Inventor's (4-star). Difficulty stars mightn't mean as much past the first episodes perhaps.

User avatar
Stanshall
Member
Posts: 1821
Joined: January 31st, 2016, 5:45 am

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Stanshall » August 31st, 2019, 9:20 pm

Scrustle, I heard Astral Chain opens up considerably in terms of combat options and mechanics after chapter 3. We'll see. Still not there yet.

User avatar
Kacey
Member
Posts: 22
Joined: July 20th, 2019, 6:56 am
Contact:

Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Kacey » September 1st, 2019, 5:15 am

Need for Speed Undercover - Playstation 2

So, the PS2 and Wii versions of Undercover were different games. This was the late PS2 era where it really just couldn't keep up with the new consoles anymore at all- and thus, Undercover was a separate, scaled down affair. This version also made it to the Wii- which, going forward, would receive completely unique Need for Speed games even if they shared a name with the more powerful consoles' counterparts. I plan to cover all these on the channel at some point, in one fell swoop, but I'll probably do Undercover separately since it's on the PS2 as well.

I would not call NFS Undercover for the PS2 a looker. It's very blurry, as you'd expect from a PS2 game in 2009.

Image

It's not offensive looking by any stretch, but one really needs to see these trees in motion to understand how bad the aliasing is- and how low the framerate on their swaying is, independent of the game's already struggling framerate.

To be fair, those still playing a PS2 in 2009 were likely doing so out of necessity, and the 360 and PS3 were still quite expensive at the time. Maybe criticizing it for its graphics isn't the fairest thing to do, but I really think it could've been served better by not trying to push the console as hard as it did. With framerates that dip, I would have preferred a little less visual treatment.

The world map is different from NFS Undercover- but it's not original. In fact, it's just Need for Speed Most Wanted's map, rearranged to vaguely resemble Palm City in the big boy version of Undercover, and with buildings and features replaced with much more Miami-ish scenery. It's not always super obvious, even though Most Wanted is one of my favorite games ever, but you will run across areas that are unmistakably iconic parts of Rockport.

The game's structure is more or less identical to Undercover's, as well, but the physics are somewhere between Most Wanted, Carbon and Undercover360's.

I'm interested to see where this one goes, I'm only about two hours into it.

Another fun tidbit- I didn't realize playing this game when it was new but the main theme is Nine Inch Nails' "The Mark Has Been Made" off The Fragile. I love finding my favorite bands in games I never knew they were in- and to EA's credit, this song sounds like it could be original score with the way Trent came up with these epic instrumentals that built like they were meant for the silver screen. There's a NIN Year Zero remix on here as well, plus Justice, Mindless Self Indulgence, etc. Good soundtrack.

Image

The sound design in general seems to be this game's strong suit. I'm impressed. The car sounds aren't any better than Most Wanted/Carbon but those games still sound great, in my opinion. The ambient sound is nice, I like that the distant street racers you hear have identifiable engine noises- I can hear the Gallardos.

EDIT: oh my god. I just... did the first heist-style mission in Undercover, which is set up the same as in the big boy game. This one.... reuses the exact bridge jump sequence as the ending of Most Wanted. animations and all, cops sliding to the end of the bridge. no words

The Matrix: Path of Neo - Playstation 2

I'm a youngin- only 20, so The Matrix came out while I was in diapers. Late to the party as usual, I discovered it earlier this year and loved it- the industrial music fanatic in me couldn't get enough of it, I liked Reloaded as well, and I got to experience being disappointed by Revolutions sixteen years late. Got to see the original in theaters last night for its 20th anniversary and it put me in the mood for the games.

I played Enter the Matrix briefly on the PS2 a few years back and remembered not getting super into it- partially because these games... really were made for fans of the source material. If you don't like The Matrix, you will not enjoy the games, either. ETM was directed by the Wachowskis and features a lot of original movie footage with the real cast, as well as voice work again from the original cast. That game fell flat, and my current Xbox copy won't read. From what the internet tells me, that's a blessing in disguise.

I picked up Path of Neo finally at a local game shop, catching the off time where they had a copy in. The dude I usually chat with when I go in said he's had a strange amount of demand for Path of Neo lately. I have to say, I get it- this one surprised me. It feels very much ahead of its time, trying to give the player a lot of agency and rolling with what happens instead of forcing the player to take a particular path.

For example, being captured by an agent in the beginning allows you to retry- or you can accept it and the scene plays out as it does in the movie, instead. You can even take the blue pill which rolls the credits 20 seconds after starting the game.

Image

The new movie footage specifically for the game that graced Enter the Matrix is gone, probably because this game came out two years after the sequel films. Instead it's supercuts of footage from the theatrical releases of the films, often sequence breaking or edited to make the 30-second version of the plot make sense. It's.... jarring, at times, but given that this game encompasses all three films (from what I understand) it makes sense that they'd need to accelerate the pace a bit to make sure they hit all the must-have stops along the way.

I... do question the decision to spend an hour in virtual dojos doing combat training, since the only Matrix-y thing I've done other than the difficulty tester is escape Neo's office- but in fairness, the combat in this game is really complex for a movie tie in. It's actually a bit too complex. Two hours in and I've forgotten entirely about some abilities, forgotten the button combo for others and some of the things in the unlock tree are... useless (healing NPCs?)

The game does have some gimmicks it thinks are more fun than they actually are, specifically punching weak walls in the wetwall section, or using the detpacks in the section that follows which is completely spliced into the series of events. I get that they need to pad out the time as this scene in the movie isn't long enough for a level but *come on*- do it better.

The lobby shootout was fun, though. The game just feels like it needed a bit more time and polish- and a better framerate. Wondering if the Xbox runs better.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 17 guests