Games Beaten 2022

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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

Post by MrPopo »

Always good to see someone new discover Ogre Battle. Have you played the original? In some ways its more approachable and in some ways less (there are some nasty promotion requirements for mages where you end up being too evil and can't promote).
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Markies
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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I have played PS1 Ogre Battle and PS1 Tactics Ogre, but I have not played SNES Ogre Battle.

It has been a long time since I played PS1 Ogre Battle that I remember very little about it, but I did enjoy it.

Yeah, I have fallen into the Chaotic side of every Ogre Battle, so it was hard for me to promote. Thankfully, I got some Lawful Characters right before the Final Chapter and I used them to train my Clerics intro Priests over time. I didn't really think about the Chaotic and Lawful side of things until almost Chapter 2 and by then it was too late.

Eventually, I ended up with a 0 for my Chaotic Frame. :twisted:
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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Well, the PS1 is just a port of the SNES version. But one of the things about the original Ogre Battle is that mages need to be between 10 and 45 alignment to promote to the next class (the two after that are gated on items). Due to the mechanics of how alignment works it is super easy to blow past the 10 and go right to 0. Similarly, there's a few units that want a true neutral alignment (so not too good, not too evil), but those tend to not be great units anyway. The mages are the painful one because they do hit all magic damage across multiple elements and you can get items that let them do it two or three times a fight. Ogre Battle 64 didn't have the "be evil but not too evil" issue, it just had a lopsided distribution of units across the alignments, so the best stuff tended to be good.
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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MrPopo wrote:Ogre Battle 64 didn't have the "be evil but not too evil" issue, it just had a lopsided distribution of units across the alignments, so the best stuff tended to be good.


Yeah, I actually unlocked the Princess Class, but I never had a unit that was Lawful to transform into them. That was a major regret in going completely Chaotic.

Also, once I unlocked about 3 or 4 of the extra books with spells that hits the entire party for massive damage, that is when my Wizards became broken and the game got so much easier. It used to take me three or four battles to wipe out a unit. By the end, I could wipe out a unit after a single battle. It was crazy powerful!
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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A little while back I was going through my posts when we did a Together RPG for Ogre Battle, and it turns out I was an utter lucksack and ended up with three Princesses and Four Liches. The end game was trivial. I had units that couldn't physically use all their attacks because no enemy had enough health.
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REPO Man
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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Cotton 2 for Switch, which is literally just the Saturn version, untranslated from the original Japanese, running on an emulator. In fact, iirc some hackers managed to get other games running on the emulator it, and I assume Cotton Boomerang, uses.

Anyway, I beat it on Arcade Mode, Easiest Difficulty and Longest Vitality.
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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Partridge Senpai's 2021 Beaten Games:
Previously: 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
* indicates a repeat

1. Dandy Dungeon: The Legend of Brave Yamada (Switch)
2. Dandy Dungeon 2: The Phantom Bride (Switch)
3. Mon Amor (Switch)
4. Terraria (PC)
5. Puppeteer (PS3) *
6. Chocobo's Mystery Dungeon (PS1)
7. Project Altered Beast (PS2)
8. Devil Summoner II: Soul Hackers (Saturn)

9. Kirby Star Allies: Heroes in Another Dimension (Switch)

I was struck a month or so ago with a vicious bug to play a bunch of Kirby after a friend was talking about how they were playing the post-launch content in Kirby Star Allies. I thought what better game to start with than Star Allies itself, as I'd never given much time to the content other than the main story to begin with. I spent some 20-odd hours playing through the post-launch Heroes in Another Dimension mode as well as the Guest Star ???? Star Allies Go! mode and the The Ultimate Choice modes. They were so substantial, particularly the Heroes in Another Dimension mode, that I figured I'd do a writeup just for them, if only a short one.

For a quick recap, Kirby Star Allies' big thing is that it's a 4 player Kirby game, not unlike Return to Dreamland on the Wii was, but the thing this time is that instead of a bunch of Kirbys, you can turn the powers you grab into buddies like you could in Kirby Super Star on the SNES. You can even add elemental powers to physical weapons and such for even more combo power, and it's a really fun time. At launch, there were also a few special guest stars who you could play as after you rescued them in the game, King Dedede, MetaKnight, and Waddle Dee. However, after launch, several batches of more guest starts were added based on further Kirby games (from the group of animal companions in Dreamland 2, to Marx from Super Star, to Dark MetaKnight from Amazing Mirror, and so so many more), and all of these 15+ guest stars play super differently to everything else in the game, and have really cool intricacies as to how they play. You can play through the normal game's levels as these guys, which is fun in and of itself, but you can also play the bonus modes with them, and that's why I felt they really shined.

First of these modes that's been in the game since launch is the Guest Star ???? mode, which in the original game functioned as basically an hour-ish long speedrun of a bunch of levels from the proper game with most of the bosses as well (including a new boss at the end exclusive to this mode) where you have to play as one of the Star Allies, and Kirby isn't a playable option. This wasn't something I had much patience to play through when the game came out, but it's a lot more fun if you play as the guest stars (which you can do after beating it with a normal enemy once). Each of them has a special intro stage that sorta runs you through their particular unique abilities, and they also have a special stage near the end of the run (and sometimes a few peppered in the middle of their run as well) as well that cater to their particular playstyles. I ended up having so much fun that I played through it as all of them, and while all aren't equally fun, I had a blast doing it. The new characters just play SO differently that it really did feel like a great new challenge every time despite the levels largely being the same.

The big thing that shows off these characters best is the Heroes in Another Dimension mode, though. This is a special challenge mode that they added once all the guest stars had been put into the game, and in it you play through a series of challenges as each and every one of the guest stars. This is a lot of puzzle platforming as well as some new extra hard boss fights, and they're put together really well! There are 120 hearts to collect along the way hidden behind a bunch of puzzles and reflex tests that you'll do with the guest stars' unique abilities, and if you manage to get 100 of them, you'll get a special boss at the end and unlock the hidden final guest star! It's all around a pretty darn tough mode, especially those boss fights, but it's a really good time, and well worth checking out if you enjoyed your time through Star Allies the first time.

The last thing I played was The Ultimate Choice, which is this game's Arena mode. It has several levels of difficulty, and you don't get the percentage bonus for completing it until you've done it at the highest level of 8 (Soul Melter difficulty). This is a pretty damn hard mode to do, even with the ability to pick exactly who you have in your 4-person team from the very powerful guest stars (I found Marx to be the best and safest pick, generally), but I actually managed it! I never thought I'd be able to get this mode done and get my save file to 100% completion, so I was pretty proud of myself for finally doing it~. Upon beating it, you even get told a secret code to unlock a super SUPER hard Soul Melter EX difficulty mode, and it's the same difficulty code that unlocks the harder mode in the original Kirby's Dreamland, which I thought was super cute ^w^ (I didn't try that mode though. Normal Soul Melter was hard enough for me XP).

Verdict: Highly Recommended. Giving a recommendation for what's basically free content is a little weird, but it's well worth going back and trying if you enjoyed Star Allies back around when it came out and are feeling the pull to go back and try some more Kirby fun. The normal modes in the base game were already good, but the guest stars add a lot more fun into them, and Heroes in Another Dimension is another really nice addition to an already pretty big package. It all adds up to be a pretty darn impressive free bunch of stuff added to the game, and if you like Kirby, Star Allies is more worth picking up than ever before in my opinion~.
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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Previous Years: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021

1. Underworld Ascendant - PC
2. Castlevania: Harmony of Despair - PS3
3. Ni no Kuni - PS3
4. Operencia: The Stolen Sun - PC
5. RPM Racing - PC
6. Serious Sam: Siberian Mayhem - PC
7. Pokemon Legends: Arceus - Switch
8. Ni no Kuni II - PS4
9. Everspace - PC
10. PowerSlave Exhumed - PC
11. Horizon Forbidden West - PS5
12. Elden Ring - PS5
13. Shadow Warrior 3 - PC
14. Ghostrunner: Project_Hel - PC
15. Triangle Strategy - Switch

From the same folks as Octopath Traveler comes Triangle Strategy (though you probably guessed that based on the naming conventions the studio has settled on). Rather than a straight JRPG, this game is an SRPG that draws from Tactics Ogre moreso than Final Fantasy Tactics. Its defining feature is its morality system based on accruing points in Liberty, Morality, and Utility, which affects who will join your party and the path you take through the story.

The setup for the game is that there are three major realms in the land. One controls hordes of iron, one controls the only known source of salt, and the third controls the waterways connecting everything. Thirty years prior there was a conflict known as the Saltiron War that was eventually settled and a new era of peace and cooperation has come about. However, on the eve of the latest symbol of this new era some bad stuff goes down and war breaks out once more. You are the son of the lord of one of the major houses, and you and your retinue are swept up in events. It's up to you to navigate the politics, as you are frequently confronted with multiple choices that seem appropriate, or multiple choices that have major flaws. You'll notice that the three morals you pick from are all positive; one tenant of the story is that a ruler must balance all three in order to properly lead. While the main thrust of the story does not waver, the paths you take will give you insights into the conflict that you can apply in a second playthrough (as there is a golden ending that requires a specific path that you likely won't take).

You have a core of eight units granted by the story, who will be the ones engaging in all of the plot points. There are another two cohorts of mutually exclusive characters; the first is early and don't show up in the story past that, while the second is late and DO appear in select story sequences. There's also a large number of optional characters who will join based on the various levels of your convictions (the three moral types). Assuming you don't specifically make an effort to focus only on a single conviction you will attain most of them in your first playthrough. One thing you'll notice is that the game does not make it clear how you gain specific convictions. While it's obvious whenever you're given three choices that each must correspond to one of them, many times the specifics are ambiguous. It's only on New Game+ that you're given full insight into the system. These convictions culminate in the various decision points for your path that occur during the story. You'll be presented with two (and later three) choices of path to take, and your seven story followers will vote on the one they want. You're given an initial overview of how each character is leaning, but you have the option of talking to them to sway their opinion, and this is affected by your conviction levels. So if you have a low conviction in one area and try to sway them into that choice when they weren't already predisposed then your words will have little effect.

Once you're in combat you've got your standard TO/FFT style grid, height, and facing based combat. Unlike some other games in the genre this one has almost no abilities that have a delay before execution; I only found a couple as ultimate skills that delayed for a single turn. On your turn you can move and take an action (attack/use item), with no requirement to do one before the other. Attacking from behind is an automatic critical hit, and if you attack an enemy who has a friendly unit on the opposite side that unit will perform a weaker follow up attack. Counter attacks are something only a handful of units can do. Besides basic attacks you have various skills, such as offensive magic, status skills, and higher powered attacks. All of these will cost a TP resource, which starts at three and regenerates one per turn, with most skills costing between one and three to use (and basic attack costing none). You also have a TP cap, between three and five depending on your class promotion. As a result, TP management is important, but you also have a lot of freedom to use your higher powered skills without worrying about running out and becoming useless like in games with a more traditional MP system. There isn't really much in the way of character customization like FFT; at most you have a series of permanent buffs that can be purchased for a character, but the costs increase fast enough that you'll only get one or two per tier for each character (though NG+ gives you the ability to eventually fill it out). The buffs are nice, but none are character defining or greatly change how they play.

Overall, it's a solid tactics game that has some nice quality of life features, such as retrying failed battles keeping all experience, and intense rubber banding on experience gains that will give you a full level every action if you're far enough behind the expected level of the map. And I appreciated that the story, while having characters clearly in the wrong, focused on the idea that there usually isn't one "right" thing to do in life, and that compromise and sacrifice is necessary. If you're a fan of the genre I recommend a pickup.
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Ack
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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1. Record of Lodoss War - Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth (PC)(Action Adventure)
2. The Citadel (PC)(FPS)
3. Gothic 3 (PC)(RPG)
4. Witchaven (PC)(FPS)
5. Unpacking (PC)(Puzzle)
6. Firewatch (PC)(Adventure)
7. Perilous Warp (PC)(FPS)


Firewatch

I felt like something sort of meditative recently, so I picked up Firewatch, in which you play Henry, a firewatcher in the Shoshone National Forest in 1989 who has taken the job to escape his wife's medical problems. He forms a relationship via radio with another nearby firewatcher, Delilah, but over the course of their job, the two find themselves the target of some kind of surveillance and mystery. Are these the workings of a secret government agency, angry teenagers, or something far worse? That's the plot that compels Henry, and you, forward through the story.

Now the game is an adventure with an open world which slowly expands as you gain access to new equipment and advance in days, though the world isn't so large that it doesn't feel somewhat linear. You interact with the world through a first person view, but each day of gameplay brings about some new area to explore that you've already seen on your map, you just haven't been able to examine in detail. There are odd goings on in your neck of the woods, ranging from abandoned equipment to mysterious figures in the distance and a large, unpassable fence, and you must grab gear and backtrack as necessary to complete the game. At least it's pretty to look at.

Yeah, backtracking is a fairly large part of Firewatch. You'll cover the same ground repeatedly as you go back and forth to complete each plot day's tasks. As you go, you'll uncover short cuts, but there is still a lot of getting through the same areas on foot, and you better hope you think ahead, because some of those short cuts shave a lot of time later when you're faced with hoofing it across the map. The game experiences technical glitches too, particularly when interacting with objects, which will sometimes cause Henry to wander off and be unable to interact or be controlled by the player for a few seconds. I think this has to do with not accessing whatever interactive spot in exactly the right space, and it happens often enough to be noticeable. The game is still generally stable though, so the glitching makes more for a mild inconvenience than a game breaking problem.

Firewatch is on the edge of what would be considered a walking sim; it has just enough interactivity to leave me unsure, but most of it's walking down what is ultimately a linear path. Still, it's fun, and finishing the game grants access to an open world exploration mode apparently, so you can just run around if you so desire.

I liked the game and found the mystery compelling, but it's more of an interactive story than a full game. If you would rather run around the woods trying to do things, there are a lot of survival sims or hunting games like The Forest, Medieval Dynsasty, Miasmata, and so on that would fit this bill.


Perilous Warp

Ok, so everybody loves portals, right? But what if these portals were only built from materials found on another planet? And what if the mining colony for that material suddenly went dark? And what if you got sent in as a lone trooper to blast your way through and try to save the day?

Perilous Warp sits somewhere between a poor man's Quake, Unreal, and Chasm: The Rift. It pits you through six levels with a variety of upgradeable weaponry that fit the main themes of FPS games against alien troopers that like to sidestep your bullets. It then knowingly nods that you must have played the Scourge of Armagon mission pack for Quake when you get to the final boss fight, which again, is in the sixth level. Yeah, it's short, it has a limited number of enemies who mainly either stand still and shoot, walk over to melee you, or jump at you, and it is very brown. Like Quake brown. In other words, it's short, it's on the bland side, and while it has some ideas I like, it just never got going with its execution.

What does that mean? That means it's the perfect kind of retro throwback FPS that I like to sink my teeth into on Steam. So I did. Twice so far in fact. My second time through took around two hours because I was no longer exploring for secrets (some of which are quite well hidden) and was just blasting my way through, but there are some issues that I struggle with that give me pause in immediately recommending.

First, yeah, it's short. Second, yeah, the AI is lacking. Third, it's really brown. There is a gibbing system, but it's all kinds of weird. Some of the weapons feel great (the shotgun packs a punch and feels like it packs a punch), but the basic melee is awful. Levels often try throwing spawning pits at you where you simply run around and shoot whatever horde slowly teleports in as you yawn and wonder when it will be done. While the weapon upgrade system does enable some alternate fire modes in specific weapons, each one is also tied specifically to certain levels, so if you miss one, you're never gonna see it again. And if you miss the one for both barrels of the shotgun, just quit and start over, because that sucker is the workhorse.

I also don't know if the developers are still working on it. To their credit, the folks who made Perilous Warp talked a lot with the community to make balance tweaks and fixes. I think the project was probably overambitious in some ways, but I am heartened to know that they talked to the people playing their game and built upon the feedback. That makes me look forward to future projects, because while this isn't where I'd like it to be, they learned from the experience.

And it's not bad or unplayable or anything like that. When you turn a corner and reduce a leaping alien to bloody mush with both barrels of buckshot, it feels really damn good. It just needs a bit more spit and polish.
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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

Post by prfsnl_gmr »

Great reviews, guys. @Ack, Firewatch is on my short list this year, and I’ll be sure to compare my thoughts on it to yours.

…..

First 20
1. Space Warrior (Switch)
2. Itta (Switch)
3. Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn (Switch)
4. Mask of Mists (Switch)
5. Metagal (Switch)
6. Foxyland 2 (Switch)
7. Submerged (Switch)
8. Back to Bed (Switch)
9. Thoth (Switch)
10. 140 (Switch)
11. Infinite: Beyond the Mind (Switch)
12. Ninja Striker (Switch)
13. Kid Tripp (Switch)
14. Miles & Kilo (Switch)
15. Neon Junctions (Switch)
16. Golf Zero (Switch)
17. 198X (Switch)
18. Macbat 64 (Switch)
19. Kiwi 64 (Switch)
20. Toree 3D (Switch)

21. Toree 2 (Switch)
22. #RaceDieRun (Switch)
23. Micetopia (Switch)
24. Tomena Sanner (Wii)
25. Contra ReBirth (Wii)
26. Unstrong Legacy (Switch)
27. Quarantine Circular (Switch)
28. Infernax (Switch)
29. Cosmos Bit (Switch)

I took a break from Elden Ring (XSX) and Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright (3DS) to knock out a short Switch game.

Cosmos Bit is a mini-Metroidvania designed by SEEP, a two-person development studio that intentionally limits its designs to mimic old technology. In Cosmos Bit’s case, SEEP mimics the Amstrad CPC, a European micro-computer and competitor to the legendary Commodore 64. The result is a game that certainly looks like an actual retro game (as opposed to a modern pixel-art game trying to look like a retro game). The soundtrack, which is pretty great, is not what you would have heard from a micro-computer, however, which breaks the game’s aesthetic consistency somewhat.

The game plays a bit like Xeodrifter, which is fine, if a bit dull, and it follows all the Metroidvania tropes. You explore an area, get a new item, backtrack, and get access to new areas until you beat the game. It is never particularly challenging, either, and I got through it in 1-2 hours. It was a nice palate cleanser, and it felt good to beat a game in so little time.

While Cosmos Bit didn’t knock my socks off or exceed my expectations in any way, I felt it justified it’s $3 price tag. I am now also interested in the developer’s other games, particularly Swords & Bones, which is supposed to be really good. Hesitantly Recommended.
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