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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by prfsnl_gmr Fri Nov 08, 2019 7:29 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:High IQ, based, and vampirepilled.

It's actually my favorite of the NES trilogy. Always felt like the stage design meshed well with Simon Belmont's slow dawdling movements. The design of the game world is indeed questionable though. I used the NES Game Atlas to get through it.


Slow, dawdling movements. :lol: Maybe if he moved faster, he wouldn’t have succumbed to his wounds...either that, or I spent way too long grinding hearts,

He plays like a ninja compared to CV1, and the game throws a lot of tricky jumps at you.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by PartridgeSenpai Sat Nov 09, 2019 5:27 am

Partridge Senpai's 2019 Beaten Games:
Previously: 2016 2017 2018
* indicates a repeat

1. Night Slashers (Switch)
2. Bye-Bye BOXBOY! (3DS)
3. GTA4: The Ballad of Gay Tony (Xbox 360)
4. Katamari Forever (PS3)
5. Detention (PS4)
6. Donkey Kong 64 (N64) *
7. OctoDad: Dadliest Catch (PS4) *
8. FlintHook (Switch)
9. God of War (PS4)
10. God of War HD (PS3)
11. Tiny Barbarian DX (Switch)
12. God of War 2 HD (PS3)
13. Starlink (Switch)
14. Shin Gundam Musou (PS3)
15. Battle & Get! Pokemon Typing DS (DS)
16. Banjo-Kazooie (N64) *
17. Super Mario 64: Rumble Edition (N64)
18. Mario Party 3 (N64) *
19. Paper Mario (N64) *
20. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (SNES) *
21. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX (GBC) *
22. The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages (GBC) *
23. The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons (GBC) *
24. Yoshi's Island (SNES) *
25. Super Mario World (SNES) *
26. Super Mario RPG (SFC) *
27. Kaeru No Tame Ni Kane Wa Naru (GB)
28. Final Fantasy VI (SFC) *
29. Final Fantasy IV (SFC) *
30. Final Fantasy V (SFC)
31. Final Fantasy III (Famicom)
32. Mother 2 (SFC) *
33. Mother 3 (GBA) *
34. Hebereke (Famicom)
35. Donkey Kong Country 2 (SFC)
36. Donkey Kong Country 3 (SFC)
37. Donkey Kong Country (SFC) *
38. Wario's Woods (Famicom)
39. Paper Mario: Color Splash (Wii U)
40. Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam (3DS)
41. Luigi's Mansion (3DS) *
42. Paper Mario: Sticker Star (3DS)
43. Mario & Luigi Superstar Saga & Bowser's Minions (3DS)
44. Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story & Bowser Jr's Journey (3DS)
45. Tomato Adventure (GBA)
46. Corpse Party (PSP)
47. Rave Master: Fighting Live (GC)
48. Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (GBA) *
49. Castlevania: Circle of the Moon (GBA)
50. Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance (GBA) *
51. New Super Mario Bros. 2 (3DS)

52. The Outer Worlds (Xbone)

I didn't really have this game on my radar until I started seeing people talking about it. I then very much had it on my radar once a friend of mine gave me an old Xbox One that came with his apartment (often you get some kind of gift from the owner/landlord when you move into a house/apartment in Japan) that he never used, so suddenly I had a machine that could access Game Pass and therefore, this game. The original Xbox One is hardly the ideal way to be playing games this far into the console generation, but it was more than serviceable to play this game. I enjoyed my time with TOW immensely, and it took me a little over 40 hours to do everything I could in my first playthrough on hard mode.

This is Obsidian's latest game, and as a result, story is a big part of what it brings to the table, and does it ever. Taking place in the 24th century, humanity has invented faster than light travel and begun to colonize the galaxy. The game takes place in the Halcyon Colony, and you play the role of a would-be colonist woken up 70 years late because your colony ship dropped out of FTL speed and got lost in the vacuum of space. With the Board of the colony not believing it was worth their time to save you and your fellow cryogenically frozen colonists, a scientist with an axe to grind against the Board wakes you up to help his fight against the Board and wake up your fellow colonists. But that's just the set-up.

The premise of TOW is certainly a political piece on the inherently destructive (and often self-destructive) impact of capitalism on people, the environment, and everything generally, but you don't HAVE to help the scientist who saves you. You can even almost immediately betray him to the Board and have a far different path through the game's main plot. While there are ultimately two sides to the conflict (anti or pro-Board), where characters themselves lie in it and how they justify it to themselves are where the more grey areas of morality lie. They've also really gone out of their way to give Halcyon a diverse cast of characters, with humans of all colors and creeds playing prominent roles in the story. I especially appreciated just how many women and women of color play prominent roles not just in the story, but in Halcyon's society in general. It's not something you see in a lot of games like this, so it made for a welcome change of pace that more games should aspire towards in how they cast their sci-fi worlds. Obsidian does a great job as usual making characters with spirit, personality, and compelling motives for what they do and a logic that dictates what they believe. Even in fairly incidental characters like shopkeepers or information givers, there's a good degree of nuance to their acting and dialogue that really says a lot about who they are and what they believe that could've easily been lost with a less talented writing team.

You get a total of 6 companions and can have 2 in your party at a time (in a very Mass Effect sorta way). Also in a sorta Mass Effect way, they'll have chats on what you're doing, will interject in conversation, or will even approach you about a decision you're about to make if they have some sort of opinion on it. 5 of the 6 of them have character quests, and out of those I'd say 3 are very good. The companions are on the whole quite good, but range from very forgettable and annoying to stand-out exemplary in their quality. Ellie and Parvati were my two favorites, but Parvati is my #1. She is by far the best example of asexual representation (something quite close to my heart, being I'm asexual too) I've seen in any media, let alone a video game, and her character quest was one I identified with a LOT of. I really loved the writing in this game, from the world to the companions to even incidental logs and books you find in the world, and I think it's one of the biggest selling points of the game.

Beyond the writing, this is an FPS RPG very much in the vein of the newer Fallout games, but also not quite. For starters, especially for an Obsidian game, this game runs fantastically at launch. Technical limitations on the Xbone aside, I encountered one soft-crash my whole 40 hours with the game, and one small audio bug that went away quickly. Beyond that, it isn't one giant world map, but a series of small maps that you unlock as you progress through the story (and depending on how you progress through it, you'll unlock different ones at different times). These smaller maps allow the experience to be much more curated and deliberately designed than the massive sprawling worlds of Skyrim or Fallout 3, but also sacrifice those games' elements of emergent storytelling and outright exploration because of it. This is an even more guided story than Fallout: New Vegas was, so if you like these sorts of games for the super open exploration, that is largely not what you'll find here. I prefer the more deliberate design, though, so I was very happy with what's here.

The shooting and combat are much tighter than Bethesda's Fallouts though. Instead of Fallout's VATS system, you have an ability to slow down time to target specific enemy body parts to debuff them in certain ways (shooting a limb will mean they have weakened attack, shooting the head will blind them, etc), as well as hovering over enemies in general to get a look at their stats. You can also do things like issue orders to your companions to attack or use their abilities more easily during this time, as while not moving or firing your weapon, your slow time-meter goes down very slowly.

The game is also designed to make any kind of playstyle doable. On top of hacking or talking your way out of a potential fight just about always being an option, dialogue and tech skills also have uses in combat as well, so being a smooth talker genuinely makes you better at fighting too. You can even completely respec your perks and stats at any time on your ship to experiment with different ways to play. I'd heard that normal difficulty was a way too easy and that hard mode provided a better challenge, and I'd absolutely agree with that statement. Hard mode was a good sweet spot of challenging, but not impossibly hard.

To comment on the hardware I played it on, the Xbox One version of the game is serviceable, but not great. Tons of texture pop-in, especially when talking to characters is a very consistent problem. There's also a good deal of slowdown when looking around very quickly as texture/objects quickly pop into existence. That said, it was only cosmetic difficulties for me. Never once did the hardware affect how I dealt with the combat in a significant way, so while this is far from the prettiest way to experience The Outer Worlds, it's a perfectly fine way to enjoy the game.

Verdict: Highly Recommended. I went in expecting to like this game, and I came out absolutely loving it. This is easily one of my new most favorite Western RPGs I've ever played, and it's nice to see that Obsidian can make a first-person game that isn't buggy as hell XD. If you like story-driven sci-fi and like a story that isn't afraid to critique while poking fun at modern socioeconomic problems, this is a game I cannot recommend enough.
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pierrot
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by pierrot Sat Nov 09, 2019 2:16 pm

I had a feeling you'd like Parvati. I kind of don't care very much about the crew in this game. I thought there was some potential to get a different group, but it sounds like you might have had the same six. I was watching Yahtzee's review, and ended up agreeing with it on pretty much all counts. I would have really liked to have the Spacer's Choice bartender, and Huxlee in my group, personally. Particularly Huxlee; She is all sorts of oddly adorable. She deserved more attention. It kind of annoys me how similar a lot of the named NPCs are, also.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by PartridgeSenpai Sat Nov 09, 2019 9:25 pm

Partridge Senpai's 2019 Beaten Games:
Previously: 2016 2017 2018
* indicates a repeat

1. Night Slashers (Switch)
2. Bye-Bye BOXBOY! (3DS)
3. GTA4: The Ballad of Gay Tony (Xbox 360)
4. Katamari Forever (PS3)
5. Detention (PS4)
6. Donkey Kong 64 (N64) *
7. OctoDad: Dadliest Catch (PS4) *
8. FlintHook (Switch)
9. God of War (PS4)
10. God of War HD (PS3)
11. Tiny Barbarian DX (Switch)
12. God of War 2 HD (PS3)
13. Starlink (Switch)
14. Shin Gundam Musou (PS3)
15. Battle & Get! Pokemon Typing DS (DS)
16. Banjo-Kazooie (N64) *
17. Super Mario 64: Rumble Edition (N64)
18. Mario Party 3 (N64) *
19. Paper Mario (N64) *
20. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (SNES) *
21. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX (GBC) *
22. The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages (GBC) *
23. The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons (GBC) *
24. Yoshi's Island (SNES) *
25. Super Mario World (SNES) *
26. Super Mario RPG (SFC) *
27. Kaeru No Tame Ni Kane Wa Naru (GB)
28. Final Fantasy VI (SFC) *
29. Final Fantasy IV (SFC) *
30. Final Fantasy V (SFC)
31. Final Fantasy III (Famicom)
32. Mother 2 (SFC) *
33. Mother 3 (GBA) *
34. Hebereke (Famicom)
35. Donkey Kong Country 2 (SFC)
36. Donkey Kong Country 3 (SFC)
37. Donkey Kong Country (SFC) *
38. Wario's Woods (Famicom)
39. Paper Mario: Color Splash (Wii U)
40. Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam (3DS)
41. Luigi's Mansion (3DS) *
42. Paper Mario: Sticker Star (3DS)
43. Mario & Luigi Superstar Saga & Bowser's Minions (3DS)
44. Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story & Bowser Jr's Journey (3DS)
45. Tomato Adventure (GBA)
46. Corpse Party (PSP)
47. Rave Master: Fighting Live (GC)
48. Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (GBA) *
49. Castlevania: Circle of the Moon (GBA)
50. Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance (GBA) *
51. New Super Mario Bros. 2 (3DS)
52. The Outer Worlds (Xbone)

53. Momodora: Reverie Under the Moonlight (Xbone)

Also known as just Momodora 4, this is a Metroidvania I decided to check out not only because it was on Game Pass, but also because it seemed we were looking for some kind of first-hand opinion on it recently. All I knew about it is that it was fairly difficult but also fairly short, and both of those proved to be true. It took me a little under 6 hours to do a 100% run on normal difficulty.

Momodora is a Metroidvania with very obvious inspirations from Fromsoft's Souls series. Especially thematically and aesthetically, the relatively few NPCs, the lethality of normal enemies, healing items that refresh at checkpoints, and even the "you're a savoir from a far-off land here to save this land from a corrupted monarch", this game's design shows its inspirations on its sleeve. That said, I wouldn't call that a bad thing. Momodora has a beautiful pixel-art design with very fluid 2D animations. Oddly enough, with what a nearly all-female cast with a somewhat anime art-style, the aesthetic came off to as a "Touhou meets Dark Souls 1" at times XD. There isn't a ton of enemy variety, but what is there has lots of corrupted, creepy designs, and the boss fights and designs are fun while never feeling unfair, as the game is quite generous with checkpoints. The combat handles consistently and nicely, and you can really start wrecking stuff once you get the hang of how the game plays.

The mechanical design feel a lot like Hollow Knight, but if Hollow Knight were a more conventionally designed Metroidvania. The scope is much smaller compared to Hollow Knight's massive and sprawling area maps, you have an auto-mapping system as you explore, and you only ever get a couple of new combat abilities to augment the otherwise unchanging power of your normal sword slash, ranged attack, and dodge roll. "Hollow Knight with a far narrower and conventional design" is my one-sentence summary for this game.

My only real complaint would be the game's difficulty curve. The game's mechanics are simple, but they have a fair deal of weight to them. Especially getting used to how long/far you can dodge and how much recovery time you need before you can start moving again once you finish your normal attack combo can both take some getting used to. However, once you get the hang of those and start finding health upgrades, the game gets a lot easier. There are a few activatable items other than your not-Estus Flask that you can find as well as some passives you can equip, but they don't really change the combat much other than sometimes buffing your attack power. The first couple bosses were way harder than the last few because I could tank SO much more damage. I didn't even die once on the final boss (who is admittedly, not that hard) because I had such a big health pool and so much ability to heal. Not a huge design flaw or a deal breaker outright, but I wish the game would've had a smoother difficulty curve than more of a downward slope.

Verdict: Recommended. If you want a Metroidvania that's short, sweet, and to the point, then you can do a lot worse than Momodora. It doesn't do anything super unique or unconventional, but it does what it does very competently and the challenge provided is engaging. If you bounced off Hollow Knight because of the great difficulty AND huge length, then Momodora's difficulty settings and much smaller scope may well be right up your alley~
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by PartridgeSenpai Sat Nov 09, 2019 9:33 pm

pierrot wrote:I had a feeling you'd like Parvati. I kind of don't care very much about the crew in this game. I thought there was some potential to get a different group, but it sounds like you might have had the same six. I was watching Yahtzee's review, and ended up agreeing with it on pretty much all counts. I would have really liked to have the Spacer's Choice bartender, and Huxlee in my group, personally. Particularly Huxlee; She is all sorts of oddly adorable. She deserved more attention. It kind of annoys me how similar a lot of the named NPCs are, also.


Yeah, the crew of six is the crew of six. There're no other options for crew available (although the way you can just dismiss people whenever certainly implies that they're taking up a slot someone else could use though). And you and I tend to have very differing tastes in games and writing, so it doesn't really surprise me that the game isn't catching with you the same way it did with me :lol:
I totally agree on the bar tender though. She and so many other side characters have so much character to them that it seems like they might be potential companions.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by dsheinem Sat Nov 09, 2019 10:24 pm

I didn’t think The Outer Worlds’ characters or story...or any if its writing, really, were very good at all. I enjoyed my time with the game and the basic framework of the story worked as motivation to do things, but the writing was B-level stuff, at best.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by pierrot Sat Nov 09, 2019 11:39 pm

Yeah, but in truth I was kind of expecting more. I don't dislike the writing, but it doesn't really inspire me either. I'm actually still kind of upset that the writers didn't at least look up how tidal locking works, or just basic orbital dynamics, though. Perhaps my expectations were just too high. I guess if dsh didn't even like the writing, I could probably cut it some slack.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by PartridgeSenpai Sun Nov 10, 2019 5:04 am

dsheinem wrote:I didn’t think The Outer Worlds’ characters or story...or any if its writing, really, were very good at all. I enjoyed my time with the game and the basic framework of the story worked as motivation to do things, but the writing was B-level stuff, at best.


What would you hold up as an exemplary standard of game writing that Outer Worlds fails to hit, dsh? :O
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by dsheinem Sun Nov 10, 2019 8:15 am

I heard it explained well somewhere else: in Outer Worlds “everything is possible so nothing really matters”. That seemed spot on. There was no reason to invest in any of these characters.

A better standard? I’d say Bioware’s games generally do a better job with world building through narrative and connecting changes in the story to player mutability/choice. The dialogue trees in most of their games are both more complex and more connected to how the game unfolds. Past that I’d say that there’s literally hundreds of better-written RPGs (e.g. classic Square titles, some Bethesda games), or other story-driven games that are deliberately self-contained (e.g. Naughty Dog games, Irrational games), but since it is probably only fair to compare Outer Worlds to similar games in its subgenre, Bioware is still probably the standard for what they are attempting to do.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by REPO Man Sun Nov 10, 2019 12:01 pm

Far Cry 3 for PS4. It came free with the deluxe edition of Far Cry 5.
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