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marurun
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by marurun Thu May 23, 2019 7:53 pm

I found Curse of the Moon to look very Castlevania, but the feel is very different. It clearly pays homage but would feel distinctly out of place against actual Castlevanias.
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pook99
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by pook99 Thu May 23, 2019 10:42 pm

marurun wrote:I found Curse of the Moon to look very Castlevania, but the feel is very different. It clearly pays homage but would feel distinctly out of place against actual Castlevanias.


I always think of it as if Konami made a new castevania, it feels different for sure, but feels like castlevania would feel if it were made in 2018, similar to Mega Man 11, it does not feel exactly like the old games, but it still feels right.
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Ack
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by Ack Sat May 25, 2019 10:55 am

1. Dusk (PC)(FPS)
2. Project: Snowblind (PC)(FPS)
3. Soldier of Fortune: Platinum Edition (PC)(FPS)
4. Ziggurat (PC)(FPS)
5. Wolfenstein 3D: Ultimate Challenge (PC)(FPS)
6. Destiny 2 (PC)(FPS/RPG)
7. Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris (PC)(FPS/RPG)
8. Destiny 2: Warmind (PC)(FPS/RPG)

9. Destiny 2: Forsaken (PC)(FPS/RPG)
10. Star Wars: Rebel Assault (PC)(Rail Shooter)

11. Castle Werewolf (PC)(FPS)
12. Project Warlock (PC)(FPS)
13. Castle Crashers (PC)(Hack and Slash)
14. This Strange Realm of Mine (PC)(FPS)
15. BioShock Remastered (PC)(FPS)
16. BioShock 2 (PC)(FPS)
17. BioShock 2: Minerva's Den (PC)(FPS)

18. Blood (PC)(FPS)
19. Blood: Cryptic Passage (PC)(FPS)
20. Blood: Post Mortem (PC)(FPS)

21. Shadow Warrior (PC)(FPS)

Who wants some Wang? Because I don't. Seriously, someone come and get this thing away from me.

Now that I've bested Blood, Shadow Warrior is the last of the major trilogy of Build Engine games for me to beat, though it appears I'm in good company; MrPopo knocked it out earlier this year. His conclusions and the responses I've seen from other folks on this forum lead me to believe that I'm not alone in my thoughts: Shadow Warrior is the weakest of the major trilogy, has aged the worst, and while it had some amazing ideas at the time, it's also hampered by cultural jokes that now look to be at best made in poor taste and at worst are just straight up racist.

In Shadow Warrior, you play Lo Wang...yep, a dick joke. Wang's master, Leep, has been killed, so he must go up against the forces of the evil Zilla to take him down. His army is made up of ninjas with uzis, zombie coolies that blow themselves up, ghosts, lizard men, ladies with crossbows in dominatrix gear, gorillas, bees, and other absurdities that make me wonder who thought this was a good idea. As opponents they range from interesting to terrible, with the gorillas probably one of my favorites because of how they move, while the bee is the worst freaking thing devised for the game. Also, the game has variations based on the ninjas, including a shadow one that can unleash explosive waves which will most probably one shot you if they connect. This guy appears in the first level. Great. The only thing that might annoy me more would be a sumo boss that dies and then lets off deadly flatulence.

Oh wait, there is a sumo boss who dies and lets off deadly flatulence. Thanks, Shadow Warrior.

To kill these guys, you have a variety of weapons, ranging from a sword and your bare hands, shuriken, uzis, some kind of chain shotgun, a missile launcher, a grenade launcher, sticky bombs, a rail gun, and so forth. Some of these have variations which change how they function to add versatility, but fully half of them blow you up. I complained about how many of the weapons seemed geared towards self destruction in Blood, but here it is full on half the freaking roster. Oh, you also get a nuclear bomb. Don't stand anywhere close to where you fire a nuclear bomb.

How is the level design? Variable. 3D Realms did do some fascinating stuff with the Build Engine here, enabling rooms on top of rooms, weapons now as 3D designs instead of sprites, working ladders, and so forth. However, they also added necessary switches inside secrets, meaning sometimes you're going to get stuck. I got stuck here way more often than I ever did in Blood. This seems most prominent in the original 4-level episode too, along with some poor choices of enemy placement. Later levels vary, but some are quite nice, and there are a few levels that I genuinely enjoyed the design, but then something would come along, and I'd find myself seeking out a secret necessary to advance or being put in a big, open space that just looks bland. In short, it's a painfully mixed bag of good ideas, bad design, and sometimes just dull set pieces.

Have I mentioned the anime ladies that Wang likes to sexually harass? At least the women of Duke Nukem were strippers that Duke paid. Wang likes to just walk up and make filthy jokes about voyeurism and diarrhea.

Ok, ok, it isn't all bad. The bosses are interesting fights at least, with the final boss incorporating a moving floor that I found fascinating. Some of Lo Wang's one liners are painful, yes, but occasionally he does spout a gem. My favorite was the first time I blasted an enemy in the face with the missile launcher, and Wang shouted, "SHIT!" In that moment, I was right there with him. When he grabs dual uzis, Wang also references John Woo, a subtle nod that I appreciate. Some of the levels are fantastic, such as a village hidden in a forest or a few cityscape levels where Wang openly refers to Duke Nukem. I even spotted a Duke Burger ad in one, and I enjoy some self-referentialism. It's just tough to make up for a lot of content I feel was poorly thought through and some that just feels...gross.

Maybe the expansions are better. I'm moving on to Twin Dragon, which was created by Level Infinity and Wylde Productions. I'm hoping it's an improvement.

"The game reveals that Lo Wang has a twin brother, Hung Lo"

MOTHER FU-
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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by MrPopo Sat May 25, 2019 4:12 pm

I know, it should be Lo Hung.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by prfsnl_gmr Sat May 25, 2019 5:38 pm

@pook99

Thanks! I’m trying to play through all of the action-platformers starring the original blue bomber. The ones I have left are: (1) Mega Man (DOS); (2) Mega Man III (DOS); (3) Mega Man: The Wily Wars; and (4) Mega Man (Wonder Swan). I was going to emulate The Wily Wars on my PSP, but now, I think I’ll wait to play it on a Sega Genesis Mini. I’m still figuring out a “fun” way to emulate the other three games.

Also, it’s still bad games month for another week or so. Give Mega Man for the Game Gear a shot!

@Ack

Awesome review. That game sounds execrable.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by MrPopo Sat May 25, 2019 7:24 pm

1. Octopath Traveler - Switch
2. Dusk - PC
3. Forsaken Remastered - PC
4. Tales of Eternia - PS1
5. Resident Evil 2 (2019) - PC
6. Pokémon Trading Card Game - GBC
7. Metro Exodus - PC
8. Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales - PC
9. Project Warlock - PC
10. Magic: The Gathering - PC
11. Ghost 1.0 - PC
12. Call of Duty 2 - PC
13. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice - PS4
14. Revelations: The Demon Slayer - GBC
15. Mechstermination Force - Switch
16. Shadow Warrior Classic Redux - PC
17. Lost Sphear - Switch
18. Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal - PC
19. Dragon Quest III - NES
20. Rage 2 - PC
21. Blood - PC
22. Harvest Moon 64 - N64

Harvest Moon 64 is regarded by many as one of the best Harvest Moon games. But frankly, I don't see it. It feels like a more tedious version of the original Harvest Moon that also makes you mess up due to the camera angle. Which is not to say it's a bad game; rather, it's in an awkward middle ground of having more complexity (without depth) of the original with less of the conveniences of later titles.

The basic plotline is that your grandfather died and you take over his farm. You have two years and a season to establish yourself before your dad shows up; when he shows up if you pissed away the entire two years he'll take you home, otherwise he comments on how you've grown up. In the latter case you get to keep playing the game, should you choose (if you really want to have eight cows making golden milk, I guess).

On the farm you can grow crops and raise livestock. Compared to the original game every season has one additional crop; this means you actually have a single crop available in fall and winter (though the winter one requires a greenhouse). The extra crops in spring and summer aren't any better than the existing ones, though. There is also a new form of livestock, the sheep, which is inferior to cows and takes up the same slots in your barn. And since there's no crafting system there's no point to them. This is the additional complexity without depth I was alluding to earlier.

One change that actually does affect things is how your tools level up. In the original game you would get a golden version of each tool after certain events. In this game it's entirely based on how many times you use a tool. This means with careful grinding (never go to bed with stamina left) you can be using the efficient versions quite early in the game. You'll definitely want the golden watering can and axes to reduce the time you spend farming and gathering wood for housing upgrades.

The thing that annoyed me the most in the game is the changes to the time system. It appears that time passes twice as quickly, which affects your ability to harvest crops (a large field can't be maintained in a day) and do the other activities like interacting with townsfolk and building friendships and love. Your stamina also starts off much smaller, so you will be very stamina capped until you can get several power berries. Finally, the clock doesn't stop at 7pm like in the first game, so you essentially have to go to bed when it gets dark; staying out will impact your stamina regeneration from sleeping and keep you from cleaning the field in the dark like before. Eventually you'll realize that animals are the way to go, because time doesn't pass inside. The greenhouse you can build also counts as inside, but here you have to deal with a slightly slower move speed compared to the original (which adds up when you're harvesting a ton of crops) and a lack of the ability to stack vegetables to drop them all off in the shipping bin at once (which we would see in later games). You'll also drop a shocking number of crops because the N64 analog stick isn't great for hitting diagonals, and you need to hit all diagonals in the game. I gave up on crops once I had a full barn because I hated the amount of time I was spending harvesting, even with the greenhouse allowing me to do it without impacting the game clock.

The main thing this game has over the original, in my opinion, is the wider variety in town holiday events. They tend to be more interesting, and help break up the day to day of the farming simulation. But frankly, I would rather have the faster time farming of the original game or the follow up games (which add in a bunch of time saving conveniences). My guess as to why people like this one is it was their introduction to the series, and is still fairly simple compared to later titles (which add in crafting and other things), and when they go back to the original they focus on what is missing, even if they were elements that didn't materially add to the game.
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pook99
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by pook99 Sun May 26, 2019 10:31 am

67. Battletoads (nes)

I'm going to assume every person on this forum knows what battletoads is, so I'm not going to write a review, just some random thoughts about my feelings towards the game through the years.

I remember when Battletoads was first released I was super hyped for it. It looked like a really cool beat em up, and I loved the way the characters attacked turned into different objects and became enlarged when finishing enemies. I rented it as a kid, loved the first level, but was disappointed in how the rest of the game played out. I was expecting a beat em up, and what I got was a hodgepodge of all different challenges that bordered on impossible.

I can't remember how far I got as a kid, I know I beat the turbo tunnel and I vaguely remember seeing the snake pit, I don't think I got much further than that. I was determined to beat this game at some point in my life and when I discovered emulation in the year 2000 I revisisted it with massive use of save states, so I can finally see the ending. I remember saving literally every 30 seconds or so and laughing about how impossible this game was at the time. Still, it annoyed me that this was the one NES game I never beat fair and square, if you name a good, hard, NES game odds are very high that I beat it, and I beat it with authority. I can easily no death contra, TKO tyson, breeze through Ninja Gaiden, and curbstomp ghosts n goblins, but battletoads was always the game that alluded me.

Two years ago I set out to finally beat it legit, and I finally did. I haven't played it since, but wondered if now that I beat it, would I be able to go back and easily do it again? The answer is no, after not having played the game in 2 years I was not able to beat it on my first run, or my second, or my third, I think on my 4th or 5th I finally made it to the end.

Battletoads is a game that has aged remarkably well, and looking at it as an adult, it is one of the most endearing games on the NES. As a kid I lamented that it was not just a straight beat em up, but as an adult I realize that if it was, it would have been redundant, boring, and just another somewhat forgettable NES title. What makes this game stand out is the massive level variety and the huge challenge.

There are 12 levels in this game, every one of them is completely different, and every one of them (except the first 2) presents an enormous challenge. This makes you want to keep playing, you want to see whats next, and you get an enormous feeling of accomplishment when you finally figure out how to get past the challenge in front of you. This game is not littered with cheap deaths, once you know what to do you will be able to do it with very few variables. Each time I played it I got a little further and the levels before became progressively easier. On my final run of the game I made it to the dark queens tower with 9 or so lives and did not yet use any of my continues.

If you have not ever played battletoads I strongly recommend you do, it is one of the most unique, fun, and challenging titles on the system. It will seem impossible at first but if you persevere you will eventually beat it, and you will feel awesome when you finally do.
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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by prfsnl_gmr Sun May 26, 2019 11:58 am

I’ve also beaten Battletoads, and I’m not going to do it again. Some of the later levels are cool, but poorly designed, IMO. That said, it is one of the coolest, best looking, and best sounding games on the NES. It would have benefitted tremendously from a password system, and I think of it’d had one, it would be a top ten NES game. Alas...
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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by MrPopo Sun May 26, 2019 1:04 pm

1. Octopath Traveler - Switch
2. Dusk - PC
3. Forsaken Remastered - PC
4. Tales of Eternia - PS1
5. Resident Evil 2 (2019) - PC
6. Pokémon Trading Card Game - GBC
7. Metro Exodus - PC
8. Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales - PC
9. Project Warlock - PC
10. Magic: The Gathering - PC
11. Ghost 1.0 - PC
12. Call of Duty 2 - PC
13. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice - PS4
14. Revelations: The Demon Slayer - GBC
15. Mechstermination Force - Switch
16. Shadow Warrior Classic Redux - PC
17. Lost Sphear - Switch
18. Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal - PC
19. Dragon Quest III - NES
20. Rage 2 - PC
21. Blood - PC
22. Harvest Moon 64 - N64
23. Battlefield V - PC

Battlefield V's single player campaign follows in the mold of Battlefield 1's; a series of short stories based around various protagonists across several different conflicts in the greater war. The focus, this time, is on conflicts that have not been covered to death in other WWII shooters. So no D-Day or Stalingrad here. It makes for a refreshing change from the standard WWII setpieces. The first mission is a British commando raid on North Africa, the second is a Norwegian Resistance operation to stop German heavy water production, the third follows a Senegalese unit during the retaking of France, and the final stars a German Tiger crew during the fall of Germany. The Senegal campaign is probably the closest to ones we've seen before (French countryside fighting), but the racial overtones add something to the storyline that you don't see in the standard American troops version.

All the stories have a three mission structure, with two of them being a fairly linear setpiece level and a third being an open "take these various objectives in any order that makes sense to you." The Tiger story is the only one that doesn't follow this, for reasons that should be obvious (a wide open pick your path doesn't make sense for urban tank fighting with your forces being beaten back). This provides a good mix of gameplay, in my opinion.

Speaking of the Tiger mission, it's definitely the best of the stories. Aside from the obvious interesting portrayal of German forces that is usually avoided in WWII games (for obvious reasons involving certain solutions of a final nature), it provides the best tank combat I have ever seen in a game. The urban environment is realized extremely well and makes for lots of cover (instead of the open spaces of most video game tank battles) and make you feel skilled as you cap enemies (and the fact you use the best tank in the world helps make it feel better that as the protagonist you don't just die in a single hit). And they took the time to model really well what happens when you fire a tank shell into a window to take out enemy infantry with AT weapons. The whole chapter is extremely well done, and I'd love to see more games utilize that environment.

I'd recommend this to anyone who enjoyed the single player of Battlefield 1, as they took a similar track with it. If they continue to do Battlefield single player campaigns in this model then I'll certainly be interested in playing more of them.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by BoneSnapDeez Sun May 26, 2019 1:15 pm

What are the best Harvest Moon games, Popo? I like the original and 64, but haven't tried much else.
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