Games Beaten 2022

Anything that is gaming related that doesn't fit well anywhere else
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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)

8. The Ascent (PC)(RPG)
9. Borderlands: Game of the Year Enhanced - The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned (PC)(FPS/RPG)
10. Borderlands: Game of the Year Enhanced - The Secret Armory of General Knoxx (PC)(FPS/RPG)
11. Borderlands: Game of the Year Enhanced - Claptrap's New Robot Revolution (PC)(FPS/RPG)

12. Kingdom of the Dead (PC)(FPS)
13. Monument (PC)(FPS)
14. Bloodwash (PC)(Horror Adventure)
15. Dead Estate (PC)(Isometric Shooter)

16. Lost in Vivo (PC)(Survival Horror)
17. Star Explorers (PC)(FPS)
18. Dark Souls Remastered (Switch)(RPG)
19. NAM (PC)(FPS)
20. WWII GI (PC)(FPS)
21. Necromunda: Hired Gun (PC)(FPS)
22. Quake: Dimension of the Past (PC)(FPS)
23. Quake: Dimension of the Machine (PC)(FPS)
24. Quake: Scourge of Armagon (PC)(FPS)
25. Quake: Dissolution of Eternity (PC)(FPS)

26. Huntdown (PC)(Run and Gun)
27. A.W.O.L. (PC)(FPS)
28. Hands of Necromancy (PC)(FPS)
29. Cyberpunk 2077 (PC)(FPS/RPG)
30. Prodeus (PC)(FPS)
31. Tails of Iron (Switch)(Action)
32. Tails of Iron: Bloody Whiskers (Switch)(Action)
33. Arkos (PC)(FPS)
34. Security Booth: Director's Cut (PC)(Horror Adventure)
35. Skinwalker Hunt (PC)(FPS)
36. Vomitoreum (PC)(FPS)


Skinwalker Hunt

I enjoy a variety of FPS subtypes, and over the years this has come to include hunting games. Wandering the wilderness, stalking prey, biding my time, setting traps, and harrowing my target as I drive it into a killbox is fun for me. And hunting games often offer tougher animals that can fight back in some way, such as packs of wolves, tough bears and moose, intelligent tigers, and so forth. That said, I have no desire to hunt in reality, and the ethical ramifications of gunning down even virtual representations of endangered species can be...difficult to comprehend, so why not hunt something that is bigger, stronger, faster, and doesn't actually exist?

In Skinwalker Hunt, you do just that. You're facing off against a supernatural being, described as a skinwalker, though in truth it bares little resemblance to Navajo folklore. In fact, the sole developer is Ukrainian, so I'm guessing he borrowed the term as a translation choice (there are several translation issues found throughout the game). The creature here is a big, muscular being with a deer skull for a head. It eats the flesh of animals and men. It can cloak itself to be almost invisible or take the form of a dog to try and throw off pursuit. It also binds other animals to its will and has an active cult that wanders the land to support it.

At the start of each level, items are randomly placed at key points on whichever map you are playing. You must start by gathering supplies, such as more flares, a rifle silencer, healing herbs, a supply vest to hold more ammo, a shotgun, and so on. While you do this, you also hunt the various animals you encounter, almost all of which are hostile; kill the packs of wolves and boars, the venomous snakes, the aggressive deer, and so forth. Level up from hunting them to gain new skills and make you a better hunter. Take their meat, and cook it for healing food, set it in animal traps to attract the skinwalker, or hold onto it for when you want to lure the big guy in from anywhere on the map.

I find this constitutes the first half of the experience, regardless of which map you play on. You always immediately begin by building yourself up. You'll likely have fended off a few attacks from the big guy too and whittled away at his health. That's good, because at this point the real hunt begins. You must intentionally get his attention. Try to pick good sight lines to let him close, where you can get a shot into him as he charges and another into his back when he flees. Eventually you'll wear him down to nothing.

There are four maps, each with their unique aspects. The first, North America, is the most straightforward. The second, Chernobyl, features irradiated pockets. The animal meat can't be cooked for healing. The third, around a castle in France, features supernatural elements. The sky gets darker as the skinwalker takes damage, until things are pitch black. Finally, the last map is more Old West, based on a previous game; you cannot save on this map and must take out the Skinwalker without any sort of safety net. Since each map offers unique challenges, they're all pretty fun to try out.

Unfortunately, there isn't much for longevity beyond playing through the four maps. Once you're done, there isn't much reason to start over again, unless you just really like wandering the landscape. But a hunting game based entirely on cryptids would be pretty fun; Skinwalker Hunt gives a taste, and I would love more.


Vomitoreum

It's amazing what can be done with GZDoom. Vomitoreum is an FPS in the style of a Metroidvania. You wander a massive world, gaining new abilities to shrink, double jump, or other means to traverse the world. You fight massive bosses, unlock new weapons and more health and healing, and kill hordes of foes. And you do this while not worrying about reloading, because hell yeah, screw reloading!

The plot is a retelling of the Book of Genesis. An alien creature called Vomitoreum arrives and mutates all humanity, so the leaders of the Templers, the Masons, and the Concubines join forces, create a massive weapon, and fight it off. Years later, Vomitoreum returns, but the Templar and Concubines no longer with to fight, so the Masons create a supersoldier called Nephilim to kill everyone, get the soul of Eve, and defeat Vomitoreum, who is actually an angel sent to rebirth the world and Eve in a Garden of Eden.

All of that is just an excuse for me to shoot more things, so I do. But hey, cut scenes, double jumping, seeking projectiles, all in Doom! It's fascinating just how much this engine can do, and Vomitoreum pushes it will still giving a fun shooting experience. Some of the weapons aren't as great, but most get upgraded versions that improve them immensely, so while I'm not a huge fan of the Trench Gun, the unlockable alternate fire is incredibly useful, and the sawed off upgrade is amazing.

If I have any complaints, it's that sometimes the game isn't great at signposting where to go next. I found a tough boss that I managed to take down pretty early, only to discover the area after was impossible to traverse without a particular item. Also, there is a mobile light source you find, but its AI is dumb as hell, so you're stuck in the dark for half the time anyway.

Overall, the game is most impressive for what it does with Doom, less so for the story it was trying to tell. But I had fun, and that's what matters.
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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Infamous: First Light for PS4. I swear, the Infamous games are some of the best X-Men games ever. And yes, I know it's not based on the famed Marvel property.

Also, does anyone else think Augustine could TOTALLY be played in a film adaptation by Patti Lupone? She does look a bit like a younger Patti Lupone and sounds like (a store-brand version of) the Broadway legend.
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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)

8. The Ascent (PC)(RPG)
9. Borderlands: Game of the Year Enhanced - The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned (PC)(FPS/RPG)
10. Borderlands: Game of the Year Enhanced - The Secret Armory of General Knoxx (PC)(FPS/RPG)
11. Borderlands: Game of the Year Enhanced - Claptrap's New Robot Revolution (PC)(FPS/RPG)

12. Kingdom of the Dead (PC)(FPS)
13. Monument (PC)(FPS)
14. Bloodwash (PC)(Horror Adventure)
15. Dead Estate (PC)(Isometric Shooter)

16. Lost in Vivo (PC)(Survival Horror)
17. Star Explorers (PC)(FPS)
18. Dark Souls Remastered (Switch)(RPG)
19. NAM (PC)(FPS)
20. WWII GI (PC)(FPS)
21. Necromunda: Hired Gun (PC)(FPS)
22. Quake: Dimension of the Past (PC)(FPS)
23. Quake: Dimension of the Machine (PC)(FPS)
24. Quake: Scourge of Armagon (PC)(FPS)
25. Quake: Dissolution of Eternity (PC)(FPS)

26. Huntdown (PC)(Run and Gun)
27. A.W.O.L. (PC)(FPS)
28. Hands of Necromancy (PC)(FPS)
29. Cyberpunk 2077 (PC)(FPS/RPG)
30. Prodeus (PC)(FPS)
31. Tails of Iron (Switch)(Action)
32. Tails of Iron: Bloody Whiskers (Switch)(Action)
33. Arkos (PC)(FPS)
34. Security Booth: Director's Cut (PC)(Horror Adventure)
35. Skinwalker Hunt (PC)(FPS)
36. Vomitoreum (PC)(FPS)

37. Hellbound (PC)(FPS)

Hellbound is an attempt at a '90s throwback FPS developed around 2020. It features the staple weapons of FPS, demons that feel heavily inspired by 2016's DOOM, a protagonist who curses a lot in a gravely voice, a lot of lava, and occasionally an open area for Serious Sam-style ridiculous horde combat.

I said an attempt, as Hellbound feels more like a forced try at a boomer shooter without actually hitting the mark. The near-constant stream of f-bombs from the player character feels like an attempt to be edgy as opposed to actual characterization. Weapons don't reload, but they have alternate fire modes, some of which are iron sights, not what you find in a boomer shooter. Enemies feel ripped from other games, and weapons lack hitscan. In short, it's an attempt at an approximation without actually getting there, like the devs thought they could jump in on a trend without actually understanding it.

To add to the issues, the game is short and suffers technical problems. Occasionally lag spikes hit, though this tends to only happen at the start of the level. More importantly though, there is an issue where sometimes mouse clicks don't register. This means your gun doesn't fire when you need it to. This means death.

These issues will never be fixed. The dev studio has since folded, so the technical issues will never be fixed. Apparently there were plans for more levels, but that also never got released. Hellbound ends up as one of the detritus of FPS games riding the nostalgia wave, down there for those who are desperate but nowhere near the first name I'd give for anyone hankering for more old school FPS goodness.

It's a shame, as the soundtrack is pretty cool. The guns do generally feel good to use, and the little tweaks to enemies, like flying foes that can briefly teleport to get away provide a nice challenge. But it feels like the dev got sucked into the flash without really getting the core of 1990s FPS.
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opa
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

Post by opa »

^Have you played Forgive Me Father yet?
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Ack
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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opa wrote:^Have you played Forgive Me Father yet?

Not yet. It's on my wishlist though for pick up. I have a lot that I still need to get to.
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

Post by Green_Warrior »

Games Beaten:

1. Sonic Adventure 2 Battle (GCN)
2. Star Fox Assault (GCN)
3. Luigi's Mansion (GCN)
4. Wario World (GCN)
5. Custom Robo (GCN)

Custom Robo feels like a budget title with A+ charm. There are no voice overs; all cutscenes are to be read with detailed character drawings next to the dialogue box. Animations of characters in the overworld are stiff and lifeless for a 2004 release.

Still, I enjoyed the presentation for what it was. I get the feeling that the developers were very inspired by JRPGs. Each character feels like they belong in an anime, with their quirks and wacky styles. For example, the main character refuses to set an alarm clock for himself, so his nosy landlord has to keep waking him up every morning while also lecturing him about it. Another character named Harry is always trying to find a date at each location you visit with him and he's very animated about it. Some other anime tropes like the cold boss who is actually a nice guy deep down slip their way into the story, too. I'd guess it's a love it or hate it kind of deal for most people, but I personally got a lot of laughs out of it and found the characters enjoyable. To go along with the futuristic vibe of the presentation, the music feels suitably electronic, although none of the tracks ever really stuck with me for long.

My expectation of the game was that it was going to be like Virtual On, except with customizable components. I was wrong. While you do fight in arenas against other robos, it's in an isometric 3D sort of view. These arenas may sometimes include obstacles and hazards, although the most important aspect is finding cover when your opponent hits you with a flurry of bullets. If you get hit too often, you'll be temporarily knocked to the ground, leaving you wide open for more damage. The action was a bit slower than I had anticipated, though eventually I managed to get acclimated. Each robo starts off with 1,000 HP. The goal is to get your enemy's HP to 0. Pretty simple, right? Where the complexities come in are the customization. Bombs, tracking pods, air/ground movement, guns, and even the skeleton of your robo can all be customized as you unlock parts throughout the story. As the difficulty increases, it becomes clear how much strategy would matter between two skilled opponents. Even the trajectory at which a bomb sends your opponent flying can become important. Still, if you're just playing through the initial story, you can get away with button mashing a lot of the time. :mrgreen:

Speaking of the story, it was more fleshed out than I was expecting. Custom Robo presents a world where things like police work and criminal activity are done via the robos. Using their minds, some people are capable of creating small arenas where these robos do battle with one another. The story often plays out this way: Some criminals are causing trouble and you, the player, are a bounty hunter of sorts tasked with defeating the criminals. You might wonder why criminals/police in this world don't just use guns or some other conventional weapon, but the ending to Custom Robo actually gives an interesting explanation that I won't spoil here. I'll just mention that I could've easily written it off as video game logic and not cared, but the extra effort of explaining things was a pleasant surprise.

After beating the main story, you're invited to participate in a series of tournaments where certain restrictions are placed on you, or there will be a special theme. Not being allowed to use a weapon type, or having a tag-team battle, for example. This is where the difficulty really ramps up, but in many ways it's worth the challenge because it allows you to unlock the rarer or *Gasp!* illegal parts! If you can find anyone who knows the game well enough and wants to play in 2022, it's a rewarding challenge.

All in all, I can see why Custom Robo didn't take off. In 2004, the market almost demanded action games have high production values. This game delivers on the action, but it plays out like an old school JRPG's plot, which may have turned some people away. As mentioned before, the stiff movements and lack of voice overs make it feel like a budget title. I imagine that the idea of battling a friend, each with your own unique robos, would be awesome. However, much like Gotcha Force on the Gamecube, not being a handheld title may have hurt it more than helped it. It's not nearly as convenient as it is with Pokemon, and I'm sure that's even more true in 2022 than it was in 2004. Still, I think Custom Robo is a legitimate hidden gem on the Gamecube. If you enjoy quirky storylines and arena battlers with a side of customization, you'll have a great time with this one!

To end my Gamecube kick, I'm going to play Super Mario Sunshine. Somehow, I have never played it before. It seems to be the most polarizing 3D Mario title, so I have no idea what to expect from it. I'm feeling cautiously optimistic. I can't picture a mainline Mario game being anything less than good, but I guess I'll find out soon!
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

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Markies' Games Beat List Of 2022!
*Denotes Replay For Completion*

1. Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster (PS3)
2. Max Payne 2: The Fall Of Max Payne (XBOX)
3. Streets of Rage 4 (NS)
4. The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time Master Quest (GCN)
5. Dirge Of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII (PS2)
6. Darkstalkers (PS1)
7. Evolution: The World Of Sacred Device (SDC)
8. Ogre Battle 64: Person Of Lordly Calibur (N64)
9. Draogn Quest VI (SNES)
10. Batman: The Video Game (GEN)
11. Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! (NES)
12. Mario Kart: Super Circuit (GBA)
13. Pokemon Red (GB)
14. Wii Sports (Wii)
15. Splatoon (WiiU)
16. Jak & Daxter: The Precursor Legacy (PS2)
***17. Final Fantasy IX (PS1)***
***18. Out Run (GEN)***
19. Assassin's Creed (PS3)
20. RBI Baseball 2 (NES)
21. Puzzle Kingdoms (Wii)
22. Operation C (GBC)
***23. Illusion Of Gaia (SNES)***
***24. Super Mario Brothers 2 (NES)***
25. Forza Motorsport (XBOX)
26. Super Mario Strikers (GCN)
***27. Grandia II (SDC)***
28. Shadow Hearts (PS2)

29. Shovel Knight (WiiU)

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I beat Shovel Knight on the Nintendo WiiU this afternoon!

When I was creating my WiiU Wishlist, one of the games that jumped out at me was Shovel Knight. I remember when the came out and how excited everybody was to play it. I watched Drumble stream it and I remember it being one of the few modern games that I would not be able to play. Fast forward many years and I finally had a WiiU of my own. During one of my last ditch spending sprees after beating my Backlog, I found a copy and I instantly knew I had to have it. After looking for games to play recently, I remembered that I owned a copy and my excitement for the game made me want to play it rather quickly.

Shovel Knight is basically a love letter to all those classic NES Games. Zelda II, DuckTales, Mega Man and Castlevania are all boiled down into one fantastic game. Your main weapon is a shovel which you can use to attack enemies or bounce on their heads. It feels so good to bounce on their heads and the small reach of your shovel hardly ever feels constricting. You also have sub weapons a la Castlevania and they help to enemies from far away or reach different areas. The game is a bit like Mega Man with 8 Bosses to reach a final area, but the World Map is like SMB3 where you can only reach certain areas. Each boss is its own unique stage and each stage perfectly represents the boss you will fight. Also, each stage has its own unique mechanic that it was a thrill to see each stage. None of them were too annoying or too difficult, though some areas were a bit frustrating at times. You also have bonus areas, towns to visit and places to explore all throughout the world. All of this is wrapped in some of the best Chip Tunes I have heard and some of the most amazing pixel art you will ever find. It is utterly amazing how beautiful the game looks and how it takes advantage of the Pixel Bit limitations. It was so beautiful and nostalgic along with a breath of fresh air to see it all.

Overall, I would say Shovel Knight is probably one of the best games I have played all year. Now, it does maintain that NES difficulty. I died over 80 times, but it was never too frustrating. I know I am probably speaking to the choir when I say this, but Shovel Knight is just a fantastic game. If you love NES style games, then this is a match made in heaven. It really is amazing and such a beautiful tribute to one of my favorite styles of games.
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

Post by MrPopo »

Previous Years: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021

First 50:
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
16. Tiny Tina's Wonderlands - PC
17. Nightmare Reaper - PC
18. Kur - PC
19. Gundam Versus - PS4
20. BIOTA - PC
21. Chantelise - PC
22. Xenoblade Chronicles - Wii
23. Forgive Me Father - PC
24. Xenoblade Chronicles X - Wii U
25. Steel Assault - Switch
26. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge - Switch
27. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 - Switch
28. Xenoblade Chronicles 2: Torna ~ The Golden Country - Switch
29. Kirby and the Forgotten Land - Switch
30. Toejam & Earl in Panic on Funkotron - Genesis
31. Postal Brain Damaged - PC
32. Valkyrie Profile Lenneth - PSP
33. Super Cyborg - Switch
34. Gunvolt Chronicles: Luminous Avenger iX 2 - Switch
35. Stray - PC
36. Live A Live - Switch
37. Subwar 2050 - PC
38. Radical Dreamers - Switch
39. Xenoblade Chronicles 3 - Switch
40. Azure Striker Gunvolt 3 - Switch
41. Soul Hackers 2 - PS5
42. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tournament Fighters - NES
43. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Fall of the Foot Clan - GB
44. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: Back from the Sewers - GB
45. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tournament Fighters - Genesis
46. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tournament Fighters - SNES
47. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: Radical Rescue - GB
48. Molek-Syntez - PC
49. Valkyrie Profile 2 Silmeria - PS2
50. Exapunks - PC

51. Prodeus - PC
52. The Legend of Heroes: Trails from Zero - Switch
53. Arkos - PC
54. Valkyrie Elysium - PS5
55. AWOL - PC
56. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022) - PC
57. Warhammer 40000: Shootas, Blood, and Teef - Switch
58. X Rebirth - PC
59. Star Ocean: The Divine Force - PS5

The latest Star Ocean is the game tri-ace was working on instead of a new Valkyrie Profile game. It is an effort to overcome the sheer banality of the last game, Integrity and Faithlessness (see, the name alone already has you yawning). The result is a sort of throwback to an earlier time in JRPGs, for both good and bad. There are also some unfortunate budget shortfalls, though nothing too terribly bad like Xenogears disc 2.

As is series tradition, Star Ocean: The Divine Force is mostly fantasy with the underlying promise of eventually some sci fi action. Like Star Ocean 2, you have two protagonists to choose from. One is Ray, a traveler of the stars who crashes on the planet at the beginning of the game. The other is Laeticia, the princess of one of the kingdoms on the planet. What starts as a journey to help Ray reunite with his crew turns into first a battle to save the world, and later the galaxy as the plot expands. The plot was interesting enough; it rolls out the revelations at a good pace and doesn't really have any bullshit out of left field as sometimes happens. And no characters act incredibly stupidly to make the plot go forward either.

The Star Ocean series has always been an action RPG series, and this game is no exception. Battle are seamless; when you aggro enemies an arena is drawn for the purposes of determining when you or an enemy has retreated, but otherwise you are moving about on the same terrain as before. Compared with Tales, the other major notable action RPG franchise, here the combat is much faster but also lacks flow. The whole thing feels like more of a mash fest, rather than dealing with positioning and trying to avoid key enemy attacks. The game uses an action point system wherein every attack uses up one or more, and resting briefly will restore them. An interesting wrinkle is you can have between 5 and 15 total AP, depending on performance in battle. As you do better you get more max AP, but getting hit reduces it.

The unique wrinkle to the game is the DUMA, which is a floating robot that follows you around. When traversing the world its primary purpose is to let you fly through the sky briefly, opening up some verticality in exploration. In combat its true power is shown. You can use the DUMA to dash at an enemy, or more importantly dash around an enemy. Doing so with the right timing will cause the enemy to be blindsided, which stuns them and causes them to take extra damage. This works on most bosses, and becomes a key part of combat. The dash also ends up being necessary just for cleaning up trash mobs, as the seamless battles tend to have enemies spread out, and running at them is tedious.

In addition to standard levels, you gain skill points, which are used to unlock stat boosts and abilities on a hex grid. This is where all your new attacks come from, so make sure you devote some time to grabbing those. You can also use skill point to increase the power of abilities you've already unlocked, or invest in the crafting skills. And here is where the game easily breaks in half. First, there is Laeticia's unique skill of Determined Princess, which gives you between 130% and 200% experience gain at the cost of 50-100% defense reduction. But as it turns out, when you can oneshot most enemies you don't really care about defense, and that's exactly what happens if you spend the entire game gaining twice the experience you're supposed to. And the crafting is the way to getting some incredibly powerful gear. To give some context, the best buyable weapon for Laeticia gave 600 attack; at the same point in time I had enough cash to craft myself a 3000 attack weapon. As a result, once I got past an initial hump and let the experience start rolling I found almost every single boss to be an utter pushover, and that includes the final boss. He didn't even have time to go through his scripted speeches.

Overall, it's a decent entry in the franchise, though it isn't as good as the earlier ones. I'd say it's better than Integrity and Faithlessness, but it's held back by a series of systems that don't really get explored (a ton of random items with stat boosts that are never worth using in battle, and status effects almost never coming up but having a lot of systems devoted to them). It feels like this is more of a trial balloon for the IP, and if it does well enough maybe we see Square being willing to put more budget behind it. But I also wonder if tri-ace has a good idea of what to do next, as the games keep getting closer to the date of Star Ocean 3, and it's been clear that no one at tri-ace wants anything to do with Star Ocean 3.
Blizzard Entertainment Software Developer - All comments and views are my own and not representative of the company.
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

Post by Note »

1. Star Soldier: Vanishing Earth (N64)
2. Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike (Arcade)*
3. Metal Slug 6 (PS2)
4. Time Crisis II (PS2)*
5. Virtua Fighter 5: Final Showdown (360)
6. Shining the Holy Ark (SAT)
7. Final Fantasy Mystic Quest (SNES)
8. Soul Blazer (SNES)
9. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles in Time (SNES)*
10. Warriors of Fate (Switch)
11. Knights of the Round (Switch)
12. Armored Warriors (Switch)
13. Battle Circuit (Switch)
14. OutRun (GEN)*
15. Kirby's Adventure (NES)
16. Shadow of the Colossus (PS2)
17. Shadowrun (SNES)
18. Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance (PS2)
19. Ratchet & Clank (PS2)
20. Final Fight 3 (SNES)
21. The House of the Dead (Arcade)
22. Die Hard Arcade (Arcade)
23. Final Fantasy II (SNES)
24. Streets of Rage 2 (GEN)*

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25. Double Dragon (SMS)

I was in the mood for a side scrolling beat 'em up tonight, and wanted to dive into something I hadn't finished before. Decided to give Double Dragon on the Sega Master System another go, as I played a bit of it last year and really enjoyed the port, but wasn't able to finish it the first time I tried it out. Luckily this time I played a bit better through the game, and was able to take out the final boss! When I was young, I had only experienced the NES version of Double Dragon, so it was cool to experience and finish another port of the game.

Gameplay wise, the fact that this version of the game is two players co-op is great for starters. It's quite a shame that the NES version of the game leaves this out. The controls are decent for the most part, but you have to get up quite close to your enemies to make sure your punches or kicks connect. This makes the forward jumping kick one of the most useful attacks in the game, along with any weapons you find that let you defeat enemies from a safe distance. Also, I did not notice any slow down during my run through the game. The only criticism I can point in this area is the length of the game, which is a total of four levels, the game feels quite short, but I guess this is par for the course for a port that was released in in 1988.

Graphics wise, I think this game looks quite good for an 8-bit beat 'em up during the time of it's release. The background levels look pretty nice for the most part, I especially like Stage 3, which is in the forest setting. Double Dragon on the SMS can also handle the two players character sprites, along with a few enemies on screen all at once, which makes for a fun experience. My one issue with the graphics here is the flicker, which seems to occur quite often. It's not game breaking, but it can be a bit of a nuisance.

Regarding the music and sound effects, the catchy tunes we've all come to know from this series are here in all their chip tune glory. I think the soundtrack on the SMS port sounds pretty good, especially the song that plays during the final boss fight. I recall that same tune from the SNES release Super Double Dragon; however, I believe it was used as the theme tune to one of the later stages. I had a bit of an issue with the sound effects during gameplay though, and I'm not certain if it was due to an emulation issue, or if this is an actual glitch that can occur. During Stage 2, some of the sound effects stopped ringing off, and only the sound effect for an enemy or a player controlled character dying would play. I don't recall this happening the last time I played. Has anyone else that played this version run into this? I'll probably play the game and see if I run into the same issue.

Overall, Double Dragon on the Sega Master System is a fun romp, even though quite short, it packs a fun adventure, especially with the inclusion of two player co-op, which was missing from it's more well known counterpart on the NES. In fact, I might even like this version better! I'll have to revisit both again to make my final decision, but I think it's well worth a go if you're a fan of the genre and this generation of consoles. Give it a shot!
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Ack
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Re: Games Beaten 2022

Post by Ack »

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)

8. The Ascent (PC)(RPG)
9. Borderlands: Game of the Year Enhanced - The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned (PC)(FPS/RPG)
10. Borderlands: Game of the Year Enhanced - The Secret Armory of General Knoxx (PC)(FPS/RPG)
11. Borderlands: Game of the Year Enhanced - Claptrap's New Robot Revolution (PC)(FPS/RPG)

12. Kingdom of the Dead (PC)(FPS)
13. Monument (PC)(FPS)
14. Bloodwash (PC)(Horror Adventure)
15. Dead Estate (PC)(Isometric Shooter)

16. Lost in Vivo (PC)(Survival Horror)
17. Star Explorers (PC)(FPS)
18. Dark Souls Remastered (Switch)(RPG)
19. NAM (PC)(FPS)
20. WWII GI (PC)(FPS)
21. Necromunda: Hired Gun (PC)(FPS)
22. Quake: Dimension of the Past (PC)(FPS)
23. Quake: Dimension of the Machine (PC)(FPS)
24. Quake: Scourge of Armagon (PC)(FPS)
25. Quake: Dissolution of Eternity (PC)(FPS)

26. Huntdown (PC)(Run and Gun)
27. A.W.O.L. (PC)(FPS)
28. Hands of Necromancy (PC)(FPS)
29. Cyberpunk 2077 (PC)(FPS/RPG)
30. Prodeus (PC)(FPS)
31. Tails of Iron (Switch)(Action)
32. Tails of Iron: Bloody Whiskers (Switch)(Action)
33. Arkos (PC)(FPS)
34. Security Booth: Director's Cut (PC)(Horror Adventure)
35. Skinwalker Hunt (PC)(FPS)
36. Vomitoreum (PC)(FPS)

37. Hellbound (PC)(FPS)
38. Streets of Rage 4 (Switch)(Beat 'Em Up)

Streets of Rage 4 is a gorgeous and fantastic return to the classic beat 'em up series. It features incredible background and sprite work, fun music, entertaining ideas in certain stage mechanics, across 12 levels that steadily progress in challenge. Boss fights are also big, offering new reasons to gain a deeper understanding of mechanics. And when you do beat the game, you have a variety of new modes and alternate versions of characters from previous games to check out.

There is also a robust training mode, which gives a free form mode, as well as general game mechanics and character-specific trainings. The downside: to really get it all, you probably need to spend a fair amount of time learning techniques, timing, and combos here. SoR4 has advanced a lot from its predecessors, and if you haven't been playing beat 'em ups or fighting games recently, it will likely take some work to really get into the depth of the system. Cancels, specials, star specials, aerial combat, dashes, wall bounces, and ways to chain it all together are available. Button mashing will likely get you through most of the game on Normal, but you'll need more to advance to higher difficulties.

At the same time, that isn't really a bad thing. While it can be disheartening to enter the slump of learning it all, once you start getting the hang of these mechanics, you can devastate. And it is so much fun. Breaking a combo with a charged hit to KO and launch a guy across the room, taking out a couple of his buddies on the process, or catching a sneaky bugger behind you with a back hit, only to then juggle him off a wall a few times is incredibly rewarding. You're kicking ass, and you feel like you're kicking ass. And that's what I want from this genre.

Now it isn't a perfect presentation, unfortunately. The Switch does suffer from some long load times occasionally, such as when checking the unlocked extras. Also, DLC content appears in the main menu even when you don't own it; it will just prompt you to buy it when you try to access that material or any of the unlockable material related to it. None of this is game breaking, but it is a little annoying to see.

But hey, I get to throw guys through glass elevator windows, and isn't that what I really want in the first place?
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