Whatcha Been Playing?

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Suits
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Suits » September 25th, 2019, 8:21 pm

FemalePheromones wrote:
September 25th, 2019, 5:21 pm
duskvstweak wrote:
September 25th, 2019, 5:12 pm

REmake and Resi 2 (ps1) were the ones I most enjoyed last year. I didn't play the ps1 Resi 1. I figured the REmake would be the best choice. I'm going to be playing Zero this year.
Zero is the only one I haven't properly played. I downloaded it last year when it was on Game Pass and started it just to have a save file ready and never went back.
I thought Zero started strongly, but I got soon got bored after I reached the animal statue puzzle much further into the game, couldn’t work it out and never had the motivation to try again.

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FemalePheromones
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by FemalePheromones » September 25th, 2019, 8:27 pm

Suits wrote:
September 25th, 2019, 8:21 pm

I thought Zero started strongly, but I got soon got bored after I reached the animal statue puzzle much further into the game, couldn’t work it out and never had the motivation to try again.
I'm pretty put off by the item management system to be honest. Apparently there are no item boxes so you have to leave items on the floor and go back to exactly where you left them to get them back. That and some item that clogs your inventory but you have to carry it for most of the game.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Suits » September 25th, 2019, 8:35 pm

FemalePheromones wrote:
September 25th, 2019, 8:27 pm
Suits wrote:
September 25th, 2019, 8:21 pm

I thought Zero started strongly, but I got soon got bored after I reached the animal statue puzzle much further into the game, couldn’t work it out and never had the motivation to try again.
I'm pretty put off by the item management system to be honest. Apparently there are no item boxes so you have to leave items on the floor and go back to exactly where you left them to get them back. That and some item that clogs your inventory but you have to carry it for most of the game.
Yeah, the item dropping is odd. It removes an essential aspect of Resident Evil for me doing that.

It marks it on your map also when you drop it so you always know where everything is.

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KSubzero1000
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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by KSubzero1000 » September 25th, 2019, 8:47 pm

I really like the item management system in Zero, although I might be in the minority on this one.

To me, it adds a much appreciated extra layer of consideration by removing the item box safety net. Do I really need that extra box of handgun ammo? I already have two red+green combos, do I really need that FAS right now? I already have 4 molotov cocktails, is it absolutely necessary to take those napalm grenades? Etc...

Most classic RE games have a pretty drastic difficulty drop at around the two thirds mark - roughly when the player can safely tap into the previously accumulated resources without being at any risk of screwing themselves over. RE2 turns into a straight action game once that item box starts filling up, for example. But Zero's item management helps to maintain that delightful early tension and crucial decision making throughout the entire game.

The aforementioned animal puzzle might be my favorite in the entire series, simply because it's one of the few that doesn't solve itself within a few seconds. But the clues are all written on the statues themselves, no guessing necessary.

The hookshot does take a bit of inventory space, but please keep in mind that you have two inventories' worth of space to store it. It's more than enough with a bit of careful preventive planning.

Zero has its faults, but I'm often surprised at the bad reputation it has. It's not a bad game by any stretch if you're into classic RE. Not to mention how gorgeous so many of its locations are.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by DomsBeard » September 26th, 2019, 2:01 am

Control fixed itself thankfully and I have to say the more I'm into it the more I'm enjoying it. Already prepared myself for an ending I don't understand. Got some Shining vibes tonight in one section

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by FemalePheromones » September 26th, 2019, 4:34 am

KSubzero1000 wrote:
September 25th, 2019, 8:47 pm
I really like the item management system in Zero, although I might be in the minority on this one....
You're really talking me into it. It does kind of bug me as being kind of a black spot in a series that I'm a massive fan of. I'll have to keep an eye out for it being on sale at some point.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by KSubzero1000 » September 26th, 2019, 5:02 am

FemalePheromones wrote:
September 26th, 2019, 4:34 am
You're really talking me into it. It does kind of bug me as being kind of a black spot in a series that I'm a massive fan of. I'll have to keep an eye out for it being on sale at some point.
Currently discounted on PS4, if that helps.

Zero is far from a perfect game. It doesn't have the fantastic pacing of 2, the boss fights are rather poor overall, the enemy design is pretty uninspired, the story is even dumber than usual, it has some bullshit difficulty spikes and the level design peaks in the tutorial area, but it is still a solid old-school RE at heart with all the good that that entails. It's not the game I would ever recommend to people who don't get along with the old-school RE structure (certainly not over REmake or RE2 anyway), but from one massive fan to another, I think you're missing out by not playing it at all. I would put it over RE3 and CVX in my personal series ranking, if that's any indication.

I think of it as the Majora's Mask to REmake's OoT. It's the more demanding younger brother that doesn't get the same mainstream recognition and is filled with questionable design choices that might alienate less invested players, but any hardened series fans owe it to themselves to play it anyway. It has more than enough good stuff to make up for the bad stuff. The puzzles are fantastic and the zapping system has its advantages once you understand its intricacies. Not to mention the score:





Keep in mind that the modern HD remaster uses some very noticeable frame cropping by default, so I would recommend selecting the original 4:3 resolution in the options in order to witness the amazing pre-rendered backgrounds in their full intended glory. Save often (as a first-time player I can almost guarantee you will get screwed over at some point). And keep the hookshot within walking distance for the first two thirds of the game, too.

Make sure you have enough time and patience to get into it and give it a fair shot. I don't think you'll be disappointed if you know what to expect going in.

Hope you get something out of it, at least. Let us know how you get on! :)

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk » September 26th, 2019, 7:26 am

I'm on the very last area and final boss of Super Metroid now, and it's been an absolute roller-coaster of a ride!

First impressions were great. Loved the setting and general ambience. The isolated loneliness of exploring this barren land. Then I got stuck, and was convinced I'd taken a wrong turn and couldn't get out of it. So, after four hours or so, started again.

Turns out I wasn't stuck, just approaching the game wrong. See, the hidden paths aren't always just for bonuses, sometimes it's the only way forward. The more I played the more I loved it, opening up the map, it's really quite a big game. I carried on through, beating bosses, and around the eight hour mark really started hoping the end was in sight. Not necessarily because I wasn't enjoying it, but I wanted to move on to another game, and I felt it ever so slightly outstaying it's welcome.

But then I reached the final couple of areas and got sucked right back in. The grapple hook, the space jump, all these upgrades you get right near the end of the game, they made traversal so much easier and more exciting that I started really having fun again. Now I've saved my game right before the very last boss, ready to finish tonight.

It's been a hell of a ride, and totally awesome really. Anyone on the fence about playing this, if you've got even a passing interest in the genre, or platform shooters, give it a go. It really is exceptional.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by KSubzero1000 » September 26th, 2019, 7:41 am

Alex79uk wrote:
September 26th, 2019, 7:26 am
I'm on the very last area and final boss of Super Metroid now, and it's been an absolute roller-coaster of a ride!
Very happy to read that. I was afraid you might give up on it halfway through considering how harsh and opaque the game can be in comparison with similar modern titles. Good on you for persevering!

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by FemalePheromones » September 26th, 2019, 7:52 am

@KSubzero1000

I'm on Xbox so unfortunately the PS4 sale doesn't help.

Your ranking actually surprises me but I'm one of the seemingly few people that really rates CVX. I'm not massive on 3 really apart from how good the pre-rendered backgrounds are.

I've never been a Nintendo person so your Zelda analogy is lost on me unfortunately.

To be honest thinking back I think I may have gone onto Zero straight off the back of REmake and that's why I felt like I needed a break.

I definitely need to get on it don't I.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by hazeredmist » September 26th, 2019, 8:07 am

Axiom Verge update:

Gah. I really wish I could get into this game, but it's not going to happen. Tried again last night, spent about 10 minutes trying to kill a boss, worked out the pattern quite easily to give out damage but it was taking SO long to defeat the bastard that I made mistakes due to fatigue alone. It's so boring. Jump over bullets, fire, hit enemy. The yellow shit gradually turns red. rinse, repeat about 40 times, it's still. Not. Dead. Carry on. And on. And on. Die due to being bored, back to save point to start again.

It's not just that - I honestly have no idea how to connect with this type of game. It's a test of memory, patience, boredom. Wandering round trying to find upgrades and things, dealing with samey environments and repetitive enemies.

Now deleted. First time I've done that with a game I've laid out money for on Switch. Shame, there is a lot I like about the game's style but playing it just does my head in.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by duskvstweak » September 26th, 2019, 1:08 pm

Wooh! Lots to unpack!

KSub! I'm gonna use all that Resi 0 advice in a week! Thanks!
Though, unlike Pheromones, you're Majora's Mask comparison has me intrigued. And, what a loaded concept! I'm hoping to enjoy 0!

Alex! I'm glad you pushed through! I'm sure it was at different places, but I also got stuck in SM my first time and stepped away for YEARS. When I did restart, I plowed through it in a weekend and loved it. It's one of my favorite games now. Glad you didn't give up like I first did!

Haze! That's sad to hear, it's on my list and one I've been excited to get to. The game looks so cool. But, if you it's bringing out new game deleting behavior, I'm worried now! How long have you been playing it before deletion?

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by hazeredmist » September 26th, 2019, 4:06 pm

duskvstweak wrote:
September 26th, 2019, 1:08 pm
Haze! That's sad to hear, it's on my list and one I've been excited to get to. The game looks so cool. But, if you it's bringing out new game deleting behavior, I'm worried now! How long have you been playing it before deletion?
Ah it's not necessarily something that you should worry about, as I'm coming to accept I just don't like Metroidvanias. The exception being Yoku's Island Express - but that is immeasurably different to this. It's joyful, easy, unique mechanically and relatively short. Axiom is a proper typecast retro-style Metroidvania from what I understand the genre to be, and that simply doesn't gel with me. A good friend of mine absolutely LOVES the game and would heartily recommend it.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Stanshall » September 26th, 2019, 5:13 pm

Sayonara Wild Hearts

One of my favourites of the year. Great soundtrack with three or four absolute chart-topping belters in another dimension (Begin Again and Mine, in particular). Derivative but exciting and well paced melange of Rez, Hang On and Ouendan. Stylish, coherent, marvellous, short, replayable.


Link's Awakening

Never played it before. Love a lot about it, especially the soundtrack and the weird tonal kaleidoscope. Disappointed by the frequent frame rate inconsistencies. I'm pretty forgiving of this kind of thing usually but it's very distracting here and prevents me from really sinking into this wonderful little diorama. I'll wait for a patch.


Untitled Goose Game

Funny, playful, beautiful effective art style. I really don't enjoy the Hitman lite gameplay, though, because I find no pleasure in the Hitman games themselves. It's boring to wait for someone to walk past and then run and hope you're not seen or to play with the pathfinding. That does nothing for me. I know I'm missing out but that's my make up.


Okami HD

I finished the first third (or Act, if you like) a while ago and that was the furthest I'd ever got with it. I left it because I felt satisfied with where I finished but I decided to go back and try the next Act. It's just so slow...I really like a lot about the game but mechanically, it's pretty samey and it's a very empty world. It'd be an amazing ten to fifteen hour adventure. This might be my last attempt.


RXN -RAIXIN-

A really average, very grindy, anime shmup thing which is nevertheless oddly compelling for me. I completed the final stage months ago but I didn't actually finish every stage because of branching paths. I wondered whether there might be a special ending for total completion given that the actual ending seemed quite crap. I put in another hour to grind my way through the outstanding stages for the inevitable reward. Oh, there isn't one.


Blade Strangers

Accessible Nicalis-themed 2D anime-style fighter. I really like this. It's kind of shit compared to, say, DBFZ or BlazBlue but it feels good to play, it's straightforward and it's easy to pull off decent little combos and big punishers which always feel satisfying. I've said it before but I wish it had a bigger online playerbase. Currently, there's me.


Space Harrier (SEGA AGES)

One of my earliest arcade memories and the music still gets me pumped up, only now it gets me wistful, too. Get ready! It's between this and OutRun for my favourite Yu Suzuki game and I go back and forth. I love the oddness of the level and enemy design in Space Harrier and despite how bare it is, it creates a rich open space for my imagination to run away. I love this game.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk » September 26th, 2019, 6:18 pm

Hmm yeah, Okami is probably my most ever 'started attempts but never finished' game. Either that or Chrono Trigger (which I bloody loved so I'm just a massive twat for never getting round to finishing it). I just can't get in to Okami, found it so dull. Lovely art style, though. Is it on Switch now? Tempting to give it one more shot because I know everyone who's finished it adores it.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by hazeredmist » September 26th, 2019, 6:20 pm

Games you’ve started but can’t finish... there’s a thread in this

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Scrustle » September 26th, 2019, 6:32 pm

Today I played through the Mafia 3 demo which is surprisingly large. Almost 2 hours long. I've been somewhat interested in trying out this game on-and-off for a while, but only just discovered this demo. I know this game bitterly split opinions when it came out, but I was actually really impressed with it. The presentation is top notch, and probably the strongest thing about it. I really like the idea of this being a character study being presented as a post-hoc documentary of sorts. The period setting is really great too and feels very authentic, with the way the picture is filtered to look like film footage of the time, and the excellent contemporary soundtrack that is really well used to punctuate action set pieces, as well as being part of the radio stations. The lighting too is fantastic and helps sell the kind of sepia-toned look of the game. The Mardi Gras parade that shows up in one of the missions is also an impressive moment that added a lot of flavour and liveliness to the world. And the animation and acting in the cutscenes is brilliant too. Can't say much for the story as a whole of course, but they did a great job in creating characters that emote in a really human way, and show a range of conflicting emotions. So I really enjoyed inhabiting the world and watching characters play off each other in it. Definitely something I'd like to see more of.

The gameplay of this demo is structured in a rather interesting way too. It's presented as kind of a highlight reel of some of the early missions in the game, where it focuses around a bank heist, but breaks it up with other missions that set up why the heist is happening, and who the characters are. I gather the full game isn't like this, and its structure is what got most heavily criticised, being much more of a slog. Here though, the pacing was fast and snappy, although I would have liked more time to get to know the characters better and see where the story goes after of course. The moment-to-moment gameplay was rather mediocre however. Mostly functional, but not that exciting. Pretty basic open world crime game stuff. You can drive, you can shoot, and you can stealth a bit too. Mostly inoffensive, aside from some sloppy and unfair enemy placement in some spots, and strangely stingy with ammo on occasion too. But not so bad that the good parts couldn't make up for it, in what I played anyway.

So right now I'm back leaning more towards wanting to try the full game out. I didn't much care for Mafia 2, although I didn't hate it. Strangely enough, I feel like this game has far more potential to make good on the stuff that people praise 2 for, but which I was left cold by. Even if it also suffers from some of the same pitfalls.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by duskvstweak » September 26th, 2019, 6:36 pm

hazeredmist wrote:
September 26th, 2019, 6:20 pm
Games you’ve started but can’t finish... there’s a thread in this
Done and done.

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Alex79uk » September 27th, 2019, 5:39 am

I wasn't on the last boss as I thought on Super Metroid last night. After checking, I was on Ridley or something. Hard bastard, took me a few goes with only six life tanks. Did him though, now on to the final, final boss!

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Re: Whatcha Been Playing?

Post by Chopper » September 27th, 2019, 8:57 am

Wrapping up a few bits and bobs that I've been playing over the last month or more. Unfortunately I haven't 'finished' any of these, but I'm probably done with them for a while.

Battle Brothers is fantastic, but as I've mentioned before I've fatigued myself with multiple restarts (learning the ropes, when I've got a 'bad' map seed, when my mercenary company has suffered grievous losses), levelling up a whole bunch of characters with traits and gear, and trying to figure out a strategy from various guides (the meta is strong with this one). This is the exact same thing that happens me with Darkest Dungeon (which I also restarted last week and will never look at that save again), and it is a pity, as both games are at the pinnacle of their genres. Well, it's hard to tell with DD, after multiple games lasting a few hours, but the presentation alone is amazing and worth checking out.

I'll definitely come back to BB and give it another go. Highly recommended, if you are into that type of thing.


Field of Glory: Empires - I have been playing this in a multiplayer-only context for the last month or two. Great game, really interesting mechanics. Of the multiplayer games I've played, a) I overextended myself as the Arverni, a southern French tribe, and got obliterated as a race within 10 turns. Shocking. b) played a co-op game as an Iberian tribe, where the other players also took a small tribe in the region; the idea was we would co-operate against the big regional powers of Rome and Carthage and forge a new destiny. This game ended when the Aquitani (human player) invaded Empioria (another human player) and the whole thing fell apart. c) played a game as Carthage, a major power. This game went the longest, and finished when Macedonia and Antigonos had a major falling out over Rhodes, leading to Macedonia leaving the game. I took my eye off the ball here (see map) while the Antigonids conquered the important regions of Egypt, and he then took a lead that would be difficult for me to make up without conquering Rome, a big ask, even though Rome had a civil war and is now ruled by an Usurper. I did unite Iberia and N. Africa though, all of whom were my allies :( d) still playing my OG Ptolemaios, this game is going very slowly (we're only on turn 34 after about 6 weeks) but I guess it will peter out eventually like the others.

Carthage game end state:
Spoiler: show
Image
A lot of fun was had, and the game now occupies the top of my 'hours played' list on Steam.
Spoiler: show
Image

As a result of playing this, I also picked up a book, 'The History of the Ancient World: From the Earliest Accounts to the Fall of Rome,' by Susan Wise Bauer, about the period, which has been very accessible but in which I got a little bogged down around 1500 BC :( Need to pick that up again, it should be getting interesting from this point on.


Dicey Dungeons. Boy, everything about this game (art, writing, and (sorry, Colin) music) annoys me, apart from the gameplay, which eventually annoyed me enough that I haven't played it in a while. I was playing through methodically, doing the levels in order, but one has defeated me - Thief 3 - which is all kinds of bullshit. :D It was probably a mistake to play that way, I might go back in a bit.


Out of the Park Baseball - Perfect Team mode. Anybody who's read this far, congratulations! You can stop reading now. This is the multiplayer, 'collect cards, put together a team, and sim baseball games' offering from the OOTPB team. I had ignored it till now - this is its second year - but I read about it on another forum and thought I'd give it a shot. I was a bit perturbed by the loot box aspect - who is paying big money for this ephemeral card nonsense? - but I persevered and have to say I don't really get the point. I'm not spending any money, but that's kind of irrelevant anyway. There is no skill involved - if you have a position of weakness, you just buy a good player to fill that gap (each new season randomises the skills of the players you have, within certain parameters, so you always need to fill gaps). And the nature of baseball means that you can have the best team in your league, but the playoffs are so short and random that it's likely that you get knocked out instead of promoted. I've been playing several weeks and have two teams in the Bronze league (there is one level below this and three above it). I've made the playoffs every time with both teams, wiping the floor along the way, but haven't been promoted (except for Iron to Bronze). It's a bit strange. However, I still log on every morning to set my lineups for the day. For now, anyway.

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