Games Beaten 2021

Anything that is gaming related that doesn't fit well anywhere else
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

Post by PartridgeSenpai »

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

Games 1~51
1. Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland (PS3)
2. Portal 2 (PC) *
3. Atelier Judie: The Alchemist of Gramnad (PS2)
4. Pipo Saru 2001 (PS2)
5. Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon (N64)
6. Atelier Viorate: The Alchemist of Gramnad 2 (PS2)
7. Kirby's Dream Land 3 (SFC)
8. The Legend of Mystical Ninja (SFC)
9. Atelier Marie: The Alchemist of Salburg (PS1)
10. Ganbare Goemon 2 (SFC)
11. Paper Mario: Origami King (Switch)
12. Star Fox 64 (N64) *
13. Super Paper Mario (Wii) *
14. Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door (GC) *
15. Demon's Crest (SNES)
16. Cathedral (Switch)
17. Super Mario 3D World (Switch) *
18. Bowser's Fury (Switch)
19. Rogue Heroes: Ruins of Tasos (Switch)
20. moon (Switch)
21. Casltevania 64 (N64)
22. Captain Rainbow (Wii)
23. Doraemon: Nobita To Mittsu No Seireiseki (N64)
24. Blast Corps (N64)
25. Doraemon 2: Nobita To Hikari No Shinden (N64)
26. Custom Robo (N64)
27. Doraemon 3: Nobita No Machi SOS! (N64)
28. 64 Trump Collection: Alice No Wakuwaku Trump World (N64)
29. The Sunken City (PS4)
30. Lair of the Clockwork God (Switch)
31. Star Fox Adventures (GC)
32. Atelier Elie: The Alchemist of Salburg 2 (PS1)
33. Billy Hatcher & The Giant Egg (GC)
34. Mole Mania (GB)
35. Gargoyle's Quest (GB)
36. Rock Man 4 (Famicom) *
37. Wai Wai World (Famicom)
38. Mega Man: Dr. Wily's Revenge (GB)
39. Mega Man (Switch) *
40. Mega Man 2 (Switch) *
41. Mega Man 3 (Switch) *
42. Rock Man 5 (Famicom) *
43. Mega Man 6 (Switch)
44. Mega Man 7 (Switch) *
45. Mega Man 8 (Switch) *
46. Mega Man 9 (Switch) *
47. Mega Man 10 (Switch)
48. Rock Man World 2 (GB) *
49. Rock Man World 3 (GB)
50. Rock Man World 4 (GB)
51. Rock Man World 5 (GB)

Games 52~100
52. Wai Wai World 2 (Famicom)
53. Tiny Toon Adventures (Famicom)
54. King Kong 2: Ikari No Megaton Punch (Famicom)
55. Yume Pengin Monogatari (Famicom)
56. Rock Man & Forte (SFC)
57. Rock Man X2 (Switch)
58. Rock Man X3 (Switch)
59. Rock Man X4 (Switch)
60. Rock Man X5 (Switch)
61. Rock Man X6 (Switch)
62. Rock Man X7 (Switch)
63. Rock Man X8 (Switch)
64. Mega Man: Powered Up (PSP)
65. Magical Taruruuto Kun: FANTASTIC WORLD!! (Famicom)
66. Maken Shao (PS2)
67. Getsu Fuuma Den (Famicom)
68. Rock Man D.A.S.H (PSP)
69. Brave Fencer Musashi (PS1)
70. Joe & Mac (SFC) *
71. Atelier Lilie: The Alchemist of Salburg 3 (PS2)
72. Zelda 2: The Adventure of Link (Famicom)
73. The Bouncer (PS2)
74. Rapid Angel (PS1)
75. Atelier Totori: The Alchemist of Arland 2 (PS3)
76. Drakengard 3 (PS3)
77. Alwa's Awakening (Switch)
78. Hermina & Culus (PS2)
79. Atelier Meruru: The Alchemist of Arland 3 (PS3)
80. Splatterhouse: Wanpaku Graffiti (Switch)
81. Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana (PS2)
82. Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana 2 (PS2)
83. Mario Kart 64 (N64)
84. Super Mario Kart (SFC)
85. Mario Kart Super Circuit (3DS)
86. Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time (N64) *
87. Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask (N64) *
88. Legend of Zelda: Minish Cap (3DS) *
89. Rock Man X: Command Mission (GC)
90. Pikmin (GC) *
91. Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures (GC) *
92. Far East of Eden 2: Manjimaru (GC)
93. Pikmin 2 (GC) *
94. Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker (GC) *
95. Shin Megami Tensei (SFC)
96. Metroid Prime (GC)
97. Bomberman Jetters (GC)
98. Maximo (PS2)
99. Operation Logic Bomb (SNES)
100. Bombuzal (SFC)

101. Splatterhouse (PCE)
102. Shin Megami Tensei 2 (SFC)
103. Shin Megami Tensei if... (SFC)
104. Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner (Saturn)
105. Alundra (PS1)

106. Lunar: Silver Star Story (Saturn)

I finally got my save cart for my Saturn in the mail, so my urge to play more Saturn RPGs was revived~. Lunar was a game I played like a decade ago on PS1 and had a not terribly amazing time with. It was brutally hard in a way I really disliked. I liked the game alright, but just got soft-locked in a too hard area I could never get out of. The localization was handled by Working Designs, and as such it was made far far harder than the Japanese original simply because they could. I was really excited to play the Japanese original since it would mean I'd finally get the originally intended difficulty balancing, and I was not disappointed~ (at least for the most part x3). It took me around 39 hours to beat the game on real hardware.

Lunar is the story of a quiet young man named Aresu (Alex, in English) who dreams of going off on an adventure someday and becoming a great hero and dragon master just like his hero, Dragon Master Dain. One day, a great earthquake opens up the nearby cave where the great white dragon is said to sleep, and his best friend Ramus encourages him to set off there to find a dragon diamond for them to sell. Alex's adoptive sister Luna insists on coming along too, and once there they not only meet the dragon but also begin a quest for Alex to pass the tests of the other three dragons and become the next dragon master. Of course, this quest itself turns into something much grander, but the start is of humble beginnings befitting many RPGs of this era.

Something I'd never realized is that the 1996 Lunar: Silver Star Story is actually a very extensive remake of a Mega CD game from 1992. The overall premise and overall ending of the story are more or less the same (so far as I'm aware), but a TON has been changed in between. Dungeons were added and removed, important characters were given more involved roles in the story and for longer, and new animated cutscenes were added as well. Along your journey you'll meet several more party members each with their own well fleshed out personalities, but most characters you meet and places you go aren't the most dynamic bits of writing in the world. The dialogue is charming and entertaining and the plot and the mystery are engaging, but the biggest narrative problem that Lunar has (other than unfortunately falling into some homophobic and racist stereotypes, granted that's hardly unique for a video game from the 90's, or even now) is that it just can't escape being a remake of a much more simple game from 1992.

While one or two main party members have something of a character arc, most characters simply have a goal and work towards it, and for most of the story that goal is just "save the world". Where a game like FF6 (from 1994) has many characters and the trials and arcs each of those characters go through all support a general theme, Lunar: Silver Star Story more so has characters who all sort of exist and take actions in support of a larger theme. There isn't nearly as much introspection into the flaws of characters and/or why they might do the things they do, they more often just do them. The overall theme of the game (at least how I read it) is using the different characters (both goodies and baddies) to compare the different things people will do to protect the people and things they care most about, and I think despite the relatively flat writing that it manages to do that quite well.

A prime example is Alex, the main character. In the original Mega CD game, he's completely silent and never talks. His little flying cat-dragon companion Naru does basically all the talking for him, very much like Link's fairies do in the N64 Zelda games. In Silver Star Story, the quite clever way they get around this is by just making Alex a canonically quite demure character who only says things when he absolutely must, and generally just keeps quiet. It works pretty well, and as someone with non-verbal tendencies myself, I always love to see a well done character who canonically just doesn't talk much, but it really doesn't get around the fact that Alex is a very flat character whose only real character trait (if you can call it that) is that he always cares about his friends and saving the world (and the person most special to him). The way the story and characters are written aren't so much bad in a vacuum, so much as they are a clear indication that the writing team is capable of doing more, and they were doing just about as much as they could with the tools at hand to expand a much more simple narrative into something more meaningful and engaging without doing a FF7 Remake and making something entirely new.

The mechanics of the game use positional combat on a more traditional JRPG turn-based battle formula. Each character has items, spells, and normal attacks they can do, but they also have a movement allowance to get close enough to an enemy to strike them (something basically only important for booping with physical attacks or happening to stand out of the way of an enemy's AOE attack). It works well in practice, but it does mean that battles can drag on for quite a while because it makes the already slightly gratuitous animations take even longer. Thankfully this has Earthbound-style enemies that you bump into in dungeons, and no random encounters (and no encounters of any kind on the world map, oddly enough).

The AI of the movement isn't the best though. In this version at least (I'm not sure if it's true for the PS1 version), there's no way to manually move, so AI movement takes care of it all, and sometimes allies and enemies will totally waste a turn if they're boxed in and can't get to the target they want to punch in the face. This isn't a huge problem beyond it being annoying that, in a game where enemy and especially boss AOE attacks can be so devastating, you have no way to manually split up the party to avoid location-based (rather than target-based) attacks. Thankfully, the boss and dungeon design of this version of the game are balanced really well even though the bosses of the game do have some stats (most often HP) that scale to the level of the main character. Every boss I fought but one (the 3rd to last boss is SO mean, omg) was something challenging and satisfying to beat but still one I could beat in just one try.

The presentation of the game is really nice. Now this version of the game isn't the 1997 version (which the PS1 port is based on) that uses the Saturn's RAM expansion to give the ability for better cutscenes, so all of the cutscenes appear in a size that's half the screen and still often VERY blocky-looking (they look like Sega CD cutscenes, and I thought they must've been ripped right from that version for quite some time). Still, they're well animated and voice acted. The character portraits are well drawn and expressive, in-game sprites look very nice, and the music is also very good. They sexualize the female characters (especially the 15 year olds ^^;) in a way that made me pretty uncomfortable at times, but it never went far enough that it was something I'd call a reason to stay away from the game completely. It's something to be aware of, but this isn't nearly as exploitation-heavy as something like Corpse Party.

Verdict: Highly Recommended. Working Designs really went out of their way to make the PS1 localization of this game far more grindy in its gameplay and sophomoric in its writing, but the original Saturn version gets two thumbs up from me. It's a really sweet story that, while imperfect and not terribly impressive for the time, is still a delight to go through and satisfying in its own right. It's a well made RPG that shows just how dedicated Game Arts were to their craft, and it's a damn shame a version this fun to play never officially made it to English-speaking audiences.
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REPO Man
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

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Borderlands: Game of the Year for Switch as Brick, Playthrough 1. Currently working on the Dr. Ned DLC.
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

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1. Frog Detective 2: The Case of the Invisible Wizard (PC)(Adventure)
2. Revulsion (PC)(FPS)
3. Nonogram - Master's Legacy (PC)(Puzzle)
4. Sekiro (PC)(Action-Adventure)
5. Grim Dawn (PC)(Action RPG)
6. Grim Dawn: Ashes of Malmouth (PC)(Action RPG)
7. Grim Dawn: Forgotten Gods (PC)(Action RPG)

8. Viscera Cleanup Detail: Santa's Rampage (PC)(FPS)
9. Viscera Cleanup Detail: Shadow Warrior (PC)(FPS)
10. Shrine (PC)(FPS)
11. Record of Lodoss War - Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth (PC)(Adventure)
12. Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone (PC)(Action)
13. Red Alliance (PC)(FPS)
14. The Forest (PC)(Horror)
15. Pixel Puzzles: Japan (PC)(Puzzle)
16. 12 is Better Than 6 (PC)(Top Down Shooter)
17. Torchlight II (PC)(RPG)

18. An Elder Scrolls Legend: Battlespire (PC)(RPG)
19. Port of Call (PC)(Walking Sim)

20. NeonCode (PC)(Walking Sim)
21. Carrion (PC)(Adventure)
22. Dr. Langeskov, The Tiger, and The Terribly Cursed Emerald: A Whirlwind Heist (PC)(Walking Sim)
23. Helltaker (PC)(Puzzle)
24. Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor - Martyr (PC)(RPG)

25. Castlevania: Bloodlines (Switch)(Platformer)
26. Treachery in Beatdown City (Switch)(RPG)
27. Zeno Clash (PC)(Action)
28. Borderlands: Enhanced Edition (PC)(FPS/RPG)
29. Ion Fury (PC)(FPS)
30. Wolfenstein: The Old Blood (PC)(FPS)
31. Shrine II (PC)(FPS)
32. Lycanthorn I (PC)(Action Platformer)

33. Lycanthorn II (PC)(Action Platformer)
34. DLC Quest (PC)(Adventure)
35. Live Freemium or Die (PC)(Adventure)


Lycanthorn II

I previously described the first Lycanthorn as a take on Castlevania in first person. Well, Lycanthorn II takes that idea and applies it to Castlevania II, so now instead of distinct levels, you have a hub world that you traverse as you enter various locales, gather items, and eventually use it to take on a big vampire critter. While the game isn't particularly complex nor long, it does offer up an interesting world to explore, some first person platforming, and more Castlevania-inspired music to enjoy while in first person view hacking down skeletons and other monsters.

But the game also takes inspiration from Castlevania III by enabling you to find allies to help. While these additional characters to swap between add some versatility (such as turning the game into a full fledged FPS as opposed to the melee emphasis of the first), they're also skippable if you don't want to bother. Thankfully none of them are effectively a detriment the way certain Castlevania III characters could be considered *cough*Alucard*cough*. Still, the game is short, so even if you bother to track down and find everyone, you probably won't have to sink that much time into it to get through Lycanthorn II.

Look, it's another free FPS-esque game on Steam. What do you want from me?


DLC Quest and Live Freemium or Die

This indie adventure game was released as a joke about a decade ago as a joke on the sudden massive prevalence of DLC in video games, particularly after the Oblivion horse armor DLC was released in 2006. As you play, you gather in game currency that must then be used to purchase in-game DLC, such as sound effects, color, and the ability to attack. Yes, it was a clever tongue-in-cheek joke, but the game did also offer a later second campaign, and it also offered up a few challenges.

I beat DLC Quest originally years ago, but I decided to return to finally knock out the speed run achievements, which involve beating the base game in 12 minutes and the Live Freemium or Die expansion in under 20 minutes. So what did I do? Well, I replayed them both, ran through them several times, and finally got the layout and order memorized well enough to get through it. And now here I sit, 8 years after the initial release, and we've simply come to accept that DLC is the norm, just as we have come to accept digital distribution, though we continue to fight the good fight about invasive DRM.
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

Post by MrPopo »

Previous Years: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020

First 50:
1. EYE: Divine Cybermancy - PC
2. Legend of Grimrock - PC
3. Legend of Grimrock 2 - PC
4. Shovel Knight - Wii U
5. Yakuza: Like a Dragon - PS4
6. Yoshi's Island - SNES
7. Vectorman 2 - Genesis
8. Super Mario Sunshine - GC
9. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Master Quest - GC
10. Bomberman '93 - TG-16
11. Cannon Fodder - PC
12. Panzer Dragoon II Zwei - Saturn
13. Dragonborne - Game Boy
14. Rock n' Roll Racing - PC
15. The Lost Vikings - PC
16. Blackthorne - PC
17. Contra III: The Alien Wars - SNES
18. Bravely Default II - Switch
19. Axelay - SNES
20. Ryse: Son of Rome - XBOne
21. Killer Instinct (2013) - XBOne
22. Heretic Kingdoms: The Inquisition - PC
23. Thief: The Dark Project - PC
24. Killer Instinct - XBOne
25. Killer instinct 2 - XBOne
26. Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth - PC
27. Thief 2: The Metal Age - PC
28. Wing Commander II - PC
29. Wing Commander III - PC
30. The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV - Switch
31. Shadow Man Remastered - PC
32. Wing Commander: Privateer - PC
33. Salt and Sanctuary - Switch
34. The Elder Scrolls: Arena - PC
35. The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall - PC
36. Resident Evil Village - PC
37. SaGa Frontier Remastered - Switch
38. Metaloid: Origin - Switch
39. SaGa Scarlet Grace: Ambitions - Switch
40. Metro Exodus: The Two Colonels - PC
41. Metro Exodus: Sam's Story - PC
42. Panzer Paladin - Switch
43. Returnal - PS5
44. Dark Void Zero - DSiWare
45. Panzer Dragoon Saga - Saturn
46. Magic Knight Rayearth - Saturn
47. Cathedral - Switch
48. Final Fantasy VII Remake: INTERmission - PS5
49. Eterium - PC
50. A Street Cat's Tale - Switch

51. Bug Fables: The Everlasting Sapling - Switch
52. Banner of the Maid - Switch
53. CrossCode - Switch
54. Total Annihilation: The Core Contingency - PC
55. Ultima Underworld - PC
56. Betrayal at Krondor - PC
57. Assassin's Creed: Origins - PC
58. Axiom Verge 2 - Switch
59. Elderborn - PC
60. Hellbound - PC
61. Wargroove - Switch
62. Eye of the Beholder - PC
63. Quake: Dimension of the Past - PC
64. Quake: Dimension of the Machine - PC
65. Legends of Amberland: The Forgotten Crown - Switch
66. Anopek - PC
67. Baten Kaitos - Gamecube
68. No More Heroes 3 - Switch
69. Eye of the Beholder II - PC
70. Eye of the Beholder III - PC
71. Hedon II - PC
72. Deathloop - PC
73. Tales of Arise - PS5
74. Mechwarrior 5: Legend of the Kestrel Lancers - PC
75. Maneater: Truth Quest - PC
76. G String - PC
77. Thief (2014) - PC

With Metroid Dread landing on Friday I needed a game I could finish before then, preferably just in time (tomorrow is D&D night so this worked out perfect). Decided since I'd played the first two games earlier this year to do the Thief reboot (that's actually a stealth sequel a few hundred years in the future). I remember people being pretty down on it, including our own Elkin, but having finished it I think those opinions are unfair. It's not as good as the second game but it's better than the first game.

Thief is a stealth FPS where you skulk about and steal stuff, because it's in the title. It's set in a Victorian-esque city called The City (and weirdly there are other cities in the world referenced in documents, so they are just utterly unimaginative). During the prologue you stumble upon some kind of weird mystic ritual that you inadvertently interrupt and gain some special thief vision powers. Getting back up on that horse you're contracted to steal some high profile items, but in grand Thief tradition it turns out you're actually helping the big bad's plan and will need to fix it.

The game is split into two primary segments. You start off in the city, which is free roam (though parts don't unlock until later in the story). You can run around on rooftops or in the streets and pilfer from guards and unlocked houses. You can also take missions that point you to specific places; these tend to have some sort of additional obstacle, like a hidden door, a trap, or an alert owner. The other segment is the story and client missions; these are separate instances from the main city with their own bespoke map. Client missions are short side missions of a few "rooms" each that you can quickly in and out, while the story missions are the longer segments. Compared to Thief 2 the story missions are generally more linear, but also have more set pieces, so you trade off the wide novelty of approaches with interesting moment to moment action. For the most part it doesn't involve much supernatural stuff, just a short, mostly skippable segment in a couple of levels, so it's much better than Thief 1 in that regard and even is better than Thief 2 on that axis. The game also isn't afraid to have a few large segments where you're just taking in atmosphere and not having to deal with guards; that will come when it's time to get back out.

All the standard Thief tools are here; hiding in shadows, water arrows to douse flames, rope arrows to climb, etc. You've still got your light gem and you need to be aware of the surfaces you walk on, though here it's more regular surfaces, the occasional muffled surface but you're crouching anyway so it doesn't make much different, and the occasional very loud surface. You aren't as pitiful in combat as the other games; one on one you can beat guards but as soon as more than one show up you're still screwed, so it's a bit more forgiving in that regard. The game has a robust mantling and climbing system and now you can no longer jump on command; this is mostly to taste though I preferred it due to overall good recognition and good level design to make use of it. You also have a fast lunge useful for getting from shadow to shadow, and the game preserves momentum well if you lunge to a railing and vault over it without losing speed.

Overall, the Thief reboot is a very solid stealth game that makes your loot useful (you have actual upgrades and persistent inventory) and provides good challenge without going overboard with nasty guard patterns and level layouts. The bespoke setpiece design even gives you the option at times of just blitzing through if you cocked up to the next setpiece (where you can put a major barrier between you and the angry guards. It's not quite as good as 2, which really went all out on the "here's a big playroom each level and go nuts", but instead you get a couple decades of learning in moment to moment gameplay design. It's definitely worth a play.
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

Post by MrPopo »

Previous Years: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020

First 50:
1. EYE: Divine Cybermancy - PC
2. Legend of Grimrock - PC
3. Legend of Grimrock 2 - PC
4. Shovel Knight - Wii U
5. Yakuza: Like a Dragon - PS4
6. Yoshi's Island - SNES
7. Vectorman 2 - Genesis
8. Super Mario Sunshine - GC
9. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Master Quest - GC
10. Bomberman '93 - TG-16
11. Cannon Fodder - PC
12. Panzer Dragoon II Zwei - Saturn
13. Dragonborne - Game Boy
14. Rock n' Roll Racing - PC
15. The Lost Vikings - PC
16. Blackthorne - PC
17. Contra III: The Alien Wars - SNES
18. Bravely Default II - Switch
19. Axelay - SNES
20. Ryse: Son of Rome - XBOne
21. Killer Instinct (2013) - XBOne
22. Heretic Kingdoms: The Inquisition - PC
23. Thief: The Dark Project - PC
24. Killer Instinct - XBOne
25. Killer instinct 2 - XBOne
26. Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth - PC
27. Thief 2: The Metal Age - PC
28. Wing Commander II - PC
29. Wing Commander III - PC
30. The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV - Switch
31. Shadow Man Remastered - PC
32. Wing Commander: Privateer - PC
33. Salt and Sanctuary - Switch
34. The Elder Scrolls: Arena - PC
35. The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall - PC
36. Resident Evil Village - PC
37. SaGa Frontier Remastered - Switch
38. Metaloid: Origin - Switch
39. SaGa Scarlet Grace: Ambitions - Switch
40. Metro Exodus: The Two Colonels - PC
41. Metro Exodus: Sam's Story - PC
42. Panzer Paladin - Switch
43. Returnal - PS5
44. Dark Void Zero - DSiWare
45. Panzer Dragoon Saga - Saturn
46. Magic Knight Rayearth - Saturn
47. Cathedral - Switch
48. Final Fantasy VII Remake: INTERmission - PS5
49. Eterium - PC
50. A Street Cat's Tale - Switch

51. Bug Fables: The Everlasting Sapling - Switch
52. Banner of the Maid - Switch
53. CrossCode - Switch
54. Total Annihilation: The Core Contingency - PC
55. Ultima Underworld - PC
56. Betrayal at Krondor - PC
57. Assassin's Creed: Origins - PC
58. Axiom Verge 2 - Switch
59. Elderborn - PC
60. Hellbound - PC
61. Wargroove - Switch
62. Eye of the Beholder - PC
63. Quake: Dimension of the Past - PC
64. Quake: Dimension of the Machine - PC
65. Legends of Amberland: The Forgotten Crown - Switch
66. Anopek - PC
67. Baten Kaitos - Gamecube
68. No More Heroes 3 - Switch
69. Eye of the Beholder II - PC
70. Eye of the Beholder III - PC
71. Hedon II - PC
72. Deathloop - PC
73. Tales of Arise - PS5
74. Mechwarrior 5: Legend of the Kestrel Lancers - PC
75. Maneater: Truth Quest - PC
76. G String - PC
77. Thief (2014) - PC
78. Metroid Dread - Switch

Finished Metroid Dread with a 55% item completion rate and and just under 6:12 on the clock. Apparently the lowest time to beat for rewards is 4 hours, so I'll need to go back at some point. There's also separate rewards for the hard mode I unlocked. For those worried about spoilers, I'll give the one sentence spoiler free review: It's the latest Metroid game and lives up to the franchise. Interested in more? Read on.

Metroid Dread has been a trademark that Nintendo has been holding for ages, and is the first game finally set after Fusion and its changes to Samus thanks to her infusion with Metroid DNA. Apparently the Federation was only mildly peeved that Samus blew up the BSL station and their Metroid cloning program (or maybe she spun a story they believed about it being the creatures destabilizing the station). With Samus as the last source of Metroid DNA and the X wiped out clearly the galaxy is at peace, right? Cue reveal of a video on an uninhabited planet of an X parasite. The Federation sends some super robots to investigate and contact is lost, so you're sent in as the only one able to not get taken over by the X to go see what's going on.

Mechanically Metroid Dread is built on top of the same engine as the Samus Returns remake. You have full 360 aiming and a melee counter on top of the traditional Metroid controls. The timing window on the melee counter has been extremely generously extended and the number of enemies that can be countered has been lowered (and tend to be ones that fit in nicely with it in terms of the cadence of fighting them). One new thing to the series is a slide; this lowers you to the same height as the morph ball but maintains your momentum; this makes it an important tool for the new EMMI segments.

And here's where the Dread name comes in. Those super robots have apparently gone rogue. They are completely immune to your weaponry and are seeking to grab you and do SOMETHING that it cuts to black before the details are revealed. When grabbed you do have a very narrow window to melee counter and stun them and escape, but I'm talking NARROW. Fortunately, the game's auto save system is generous and you will always have a save point outside the areas with an EMMI. These segments draw on the SA-X segments of Fusion and the suitless part of Zero, but makes it more full fledged. The EMMI will wander around the area searching for you and has three states; general searching, knows you're in the area, and found you. In the third state the exits from the EMMI's hunting grounds lock and you need to get enough distance that the EMMI gives up and goes back to searching. This is where the slide is important, as you need to keep up that speed. You will eventually be able to take out each one as part of progression.

The game has the standard array of Metroid power ups plus a few new ones that add a bit more mobility to things. The map layout is the most labyrinthine yet, with multiple transition points between zones and a lot of zig zagging back and forth as you gain mobility and as events occur that modify the terrain. The game is pretty good about giving you enough resources on the main path that filling out the rest of the items is unnecessary for feeling like you're prepared for the final boss.

Speaking of bosses, these are the most active bosses of any 2D Metroid game. Mobility is very key in these fights and you very much have to balance attacking and dodging, as these bosses don't pull any punches. You'll need to learn their tells and patterns if you hope to survive, as damage output is quite high (though not quite as bad as Fusion was). And again, the generous auto save plus the boss door lock creature topping you off means that you can jump right in after a death.

Overall Metroid Dread is the sequel we've been hoping for since the GBA. The Samus Returns reboot was clearly a try out for them to double check that people were still interested in Metroid and their partner studio had the chops to be able to do the series justice. Dread is everything I hoped it would be, and fans of the series and the genre have already picked it up so I don't actually see any point to this review.
Blizzard Entertainment Software Developer - All comments and views are my own and not representative of the company.
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REPO Man
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

Post by REPO Man »

Sonic 1 SMS Remake, a fan made remake of the Sega Master System version of Sonic 1, a la the Christian Whitehead remakes of CD and 1-2, on Remake mode as Sonic with all the Chaos Emeralds.

Available for PC and Android, the latter is the one I played and some time ago added Bluetooth controller support, this remake brings a host of QOL improvements to Sonic's first 8-bit outing. Aside from widescreen, it also adds new game modes, including a Mania-style Encore mode. And speaking of Sonic Mania, this remake also adds Tails, Knuckles, Mighty and Ray with their Mania movesets, as well as Sonic's drop dash. There's also Super mode, Chaos Emeralds acquired via Special Stages based on the original S1SMS Special Stages, an unlimited ring counter, a life bar for the boss battles, new stage layouts and three new zones based on Marble, Spring Yard and Star Light.

There's also a similar remake of Sonic 2 SMS and a host of fan games made with the game's engine, Open Sonic. It requires Game Maker FYI.

Fair warning, the Android versions of the games listed under "Fan Games" all set off my antivirus software on my tablet.

And the Android versions of S1SMS and S2SMS will not run on Android TV devices.
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

Post by MrPopo »

Previous Years: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020

First 50:
1. EYE: Divine Cybermancy - PC
2. Legend of Grimrock - PC
3. Legend of Grimrock 2 - PC
4. Shovel Knight - Wii U
5. Yakuza: Like a Dragon - PS4
6. Yoshi's Island - SNES
7. Vectorman 2 - Genesis
8. Super Mario Sunshine - GC
9. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Master Quest - GC
10. Bomberman '93 - TG-16
11. Cannon Fodder - PC
12. Panzer Dragoon II Zwei - Saturn
13. Dragonborne - Game Boy
14. Rock n' Roll Racing - PC
15. The Lost Vikings - PC
16. Blackthorne - PC
17. Contra III: The Alien Wars - SNES
18. Bravely Default II - Switch
19. Axelay - SNES
20. Ryse: Son of Rome - XBOne
21. Killer Instinct (2013) - XBOne
22. Heretic Kingdoms: The Inquisition - PC
23. Thief: The Dark Project - PC
24. Killer Instinct - XBOne
25. Killer instinct 2 - XBOne
26. Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth - PC
27. Thief 2: The Metal Age - PC
28. Wing Commander II - PC
29. Wing Commander III - PC
30. The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV - Switch
31. Shadow Man Remastered - PC
32. Wing Commander: Privateer - PC
33. Salt and Sanctuary - Switch
34. The Elder Scrolls: Arena - PC
35. The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall - PC
36. Resident Evil Village - PC
37. SaGa Frontier Remastered - Switch
38. Metaloid: Origin - Switch
39. SaGa Scarlet Grace: Ambitions - Switch
40. Metro Exodus: The Two Colonels - PC
41. Metro Exodus: Sam's Story - PC
42. Panzer Paladin - Switch
43. Returnal - PS5
44. Dark Void Zero - DSiWare
45. Panzer Dragoon Saga - Saturn
46. Magic Knight Rayearth - Saturn
47. Cathedral - Switch
48. Final Fantasy VII Remake: INTERmission - PS5
49. Eterium - PC
50. A Street Cat's Tale - Switch

51. Bug Fables: The Everlasting Sapling - Switch
52. Banner of the Maid - Switch
53. CrossCode - Switch
54. Total Annihilation: The Core Contingency - PC
55. Ultima Underworld - PC
56. Betrayal at Krondor - PC
57. Assassin's Creed: Origins - PC
58. Axiom Verge 2 - Switch
59. Elderborn - PC
60. Hellbound - PC
61. Wargroove - Switch
62. Eye of the Beholder - PC
63. Quake: Dimension of the Past - PC
64. Quake: Dimension of the Machine - PC
65. Legends of Amberland: The Forgotten Crown - Switch
66. Anopek - PC
67. Baten Kaitos - Gamecube
68. No More Heroes 3 - Switch
69. Eye of the Beholder II - PC
70. Eye of the Beholder III - PC
71. Hedon II - PC
72. Deathloop - PC
73. Tales of Arise - PS5
74. Mechwarrior 5: Legend of the Kestrel Lancers - PC
75. Maneater: Truth Quest - PC
76. G String - PC
77. Thief (2014) - PC
78. Metroid Dread - Switch
79. Vomitoreum - PC

Vomitoreum is an indie Doom engine game that differentiates itself by having a single giant map made up of a bunch of interconnected areas that require mobility upgrades to get through. In other words, it can best be thought of as a Doom engine Metroidvania. It's certainly an amateur effort, but after an initial poor first impression I quickly began to groove with it. It took me a couple hours to get through and there's some parts that I definitely think aren't done well, but overall it's not a bad experiment.

The story is mostly an excuse plot except that midway through there's a story segment where it is revealed that the reason there's a bunch of monsters is vengeance for a girl who was raped, which really comes out of nowhere and is certainly an unearned bit of drama. Would have been better if they just stuck with "there's monsters, go kill them and their bosses".

You start off with a pistol, but quickly get a gauntlet that lets you dash and break blocks, then a bit later a shotgun. The shotgun and the pistol both get upgraded over time; the shotgun becomes a double shotty with enough knockback that it can be used to reach any height in the game and the pistol turns into a machine gun, as well as a secondary fire that creates ice blocks on water (which hurts you something fierce). There are a few hidden weapons, apparently, but they require you to be a bit of a completionist and are totally unnecessary. Interestingly, you have infinite ammo for all weapons. The game is less about combat than traversal, however. In addition to the gauntlet dash (which can be used with a gun equipped) which can be used to cross gaps you start off with a fairly bouncy jump (similar sort of feel to Metroid Prime) and gain a double jump, as well as the ability to shrink to fit into small areas. Late in the game you get protection from water, which opens up the last few areas you need to get the key items to unlock the final boss.

The game's shortcomings mostly come from the fact that this is clearly someone's first time making a game and they don't really understand a lot of important game design principles. Enemies tend to be silent, which gives you really bad feedback on when you're being shot, and enemies also don't suffer any sort of hit stun. The fact that water hurts you comes as a big surprise, as normally you use some sort of sickly color to indicate it's bad stuff. And there's one section which is in pure darkness that can only be lit by a floating skull that is scripted as a separate entity that follows you, so it has to pathfind and forces you to take halting steps (this area also has no minimap). One might point out all the bosses are trivial "circle strafe and win", but that's sort of the nature of the Doom engine unless you give them dickish abilities/massive hordes of followers.

Overall it's a decent effort that won't light anyone's world on fire but gets points for trying some new stuff for this engine. Hedon is a much better example of using the Doom engine to produce a non-boomer shooter game, but if you can snag this on sale it's worth it.
Blizzard Entertainment Software Developer - All comments and views are my own and not representative of the company.
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Raging Justice
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

Post by Raging Justice »

Flynn: Son of Crimson - PS4, also available on Switch, Xbox One, PC

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So this is one of those games I imagine people will say, IT'S METROIDVANIA. It's not, I just had to point that out because I hate how EVERY...GODDAMN...THING is given that label. Words just have no meaning anymore...

Okay, enough ranting. So what is this game? It's basically a 2d, platformer, but with mostly linear levels. That's why it's not metroidvania. This seems to be another indie game that probably came from a kickstarter (there's an area of the game that shows you a TON of names of people involved with the game). You have a series of levels that are basically about getting from point A to point B. There's combat in this game and it goes beyond just hitting an enemy, killing it, and moving on. There's something of a beat 'em up/hack n slash element here. It's very basic though, but still fun.

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You can do a basic ground combo, a dodge roll (with iframes), and can unlock a few more moves like popping an enemy up for an air combo, or a downward strike. You probably won't use too many moves beyond your basic ground combo and dodge roll though, and here is why. There is a special meter you can fill up as you fight. In order to do any attack beyond a simple ground combo, you need to use portions of this meter. I found this rather restrictive and it kind of handcuffs combat. If you manage to fill the meter to full capacity, you can activate a sort of rage mode that increases your speed and power considerably. Enemies have a stun meter that builds up as you attack them, so you can get some free hits in once they are stunned. You start the game with a sword, and find two other weapons as you play through the game, each one feeling a bit more useful than the previous one. There's magic spells in the game too. These are fun to use, because the game doesn't have an MP system, so you can use magic as much as you want. You can spam rapid fire shots, but it's arguably better to charge up your magic to fire larger blasts. Doing so triggers elemental effects. Ice magic freezes enemies. Fire does damage over time, and the most fun spell is lightning. It chains from enemy to enemy and stuns them.

The game has an upgrade system. You find gems throughout levels like you'd find coins or rings in a Mario or Sonic game, and you can spend them on upgrades. Upgrades will give you more health, unlock a few more moves (that all use up portions of the special meter), as well as extended versions of those moves (like adding more hits to your air combos), and enhance your rage meter

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There's collectibles to find. You can sell them for more gems. You can also find secret doors and exits in some stages. Usually, they will just unlock a new area, lead to a collectible, or unlock a combat challenge

There are puzzles, nothing too complicated though

The game has nice sprites, colorful graphics, and some decent character/enemy designs. It looks a bit similar to the game Chasm, like it was built using the same engine. Some of the sound effects sound ripped right out of Dust: An Elysian Tail. The music is alright, but honestly I can't remember a single tune as I'm typing this. The game has no voice acting.

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The levels are well designed and varied. The controls are extremely tight and responsive. Some parts of the stages focus heavily on combat, and as I said before there are combat challenges you can unlock. There's a handful of boss fights, they are pretty well designed and fun. The final boss is pretty epic

The story is decent, you get some fairly interesting revelations near the end of the game. There's lot of NPCs in the game with lots of dialog, a lot of it is fairly uninteresting, but a few characters get in some funny lines. The protagonist is your basic, bland, blank slate like Link from Zelda. There's a cool dog in the game with supernatural abilities. You will make use of him in some stages and it's pretty cool. He's basically a mount, but one with very powerful attacks and good mobility.

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All in all, the game is a very solidly designed platformer with some fairly decent combat. There are few cons to the game. Many stages are very long. Most of the game's levels could have been split up into two or three stages. The game often just tries to cram way too many things into a single stage. Here's some platforming, now here's a gliding section, now here's a chase sequence, now here's a boss fight...ugh. Most of the enemies in the game are a little spongy. Like why do I have to hit you so many times? This gets better though as you unlock the other weapons. I also failed to mention that some of the upgrades increase your damage and also increase your chances of landing critical hits. Also, as I said earlier, the fact that most of your attacks are tied to the special meter is kind of a drag. Also, it can take so much to fill the meter that you don't really get to enjoy the rage mode as much as I would like. In boss battles I felt like it took forever to fill the damn thing, and even if you have it filled prior to the boss battle, the game will just revert the bar to zero...which is kind of lame.

I got hit with an annoying completion bug, so I didn't get the trophy for fully exploring and completing every level and completing all of the combat challenges. This bug seems to be random. Some people got it, some people didn't. The devs are working on a patch.

I like this game. If you dig platformers and maybe want something a bit more linear, given that so many games go the metroid route, check this out. It's a fun, old school game that's easy to pick up and play just like Kaze and the Wild Masks is.

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REPO Man
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

Post by REPO Man »

Sonic 2 SMS Remake, also available for PC and Android, the latter I played as Sonic & Tails and managed to get all the Chaos Emeralds, which are obtained via the same kind of Special Stages as S1SMS.

Like the creator's Sonic 1 SMS Remake, this remake features a host of QOL improvements, new modes and here we get two characters in each playthrough to switch between. In my playthrough I chose Sonic and Tails, with Sonic Mania's drop dash for Sonic, but there are three other pairs to choose from and a fifth pair unlocked after getting the Master Emerald from the new final boss. There's also few new Zones, Oil Ocean and Time Hill, the latter featuring a shifting color palette to reflect a rapid shift between times of the day.
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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

Post by MrPopo »

Previous Years: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020

First 50:
1. EYE: Divine Cybermancy - PC
2. Legend of Grimrock - PC
3. Legend of Grimrock 2 - PC
4. Shovel Knight - Wii U
5. Yakuza: Like a Dragon - PS4
6. Yoshi's Island - SNES
7. Vectorman 2 - Genesis
8. Super Mario Sunshine - GC
9. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Master Quest - GC
10. Bomberman '93 - TG-16
11. Cannon Fodder - PC
12. Panzer Dragoon II Zwei - Saturn
13. Dragonborne - Game Boy
14. Rock n' Roll Racing - PC
15. The Lost Vikings - PC
16. Blackthorne - PC
17. Contra III: The Alien Wars - SNES
18. Bravely Default II - Switch
19. Axelay - SNES
20. Ryse: Son of Rome - XBOne
21. Killer Instinct (2013) - XBOne
22. Heretic Kingdoms: The Inquisition - PC
23. Thief: The Dark Project - PC
24. Killer Instinct - XBOne
25. Killer instinct 2 - XBOne
26. Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth - PC
27. Thief 2: The Metal Age - PC
28. Wing Commander II - PC
29. Wing Commander III - PC
30. The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV - Switch
31. Shadow Man Remastered - PC
32. Wing Commander: Privateer - PC
33. Salt and Sanctuary - Switch
34. The Elder Scrolls: Arena - PC
35. The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall - PC
36. Resident Evil Village - PC
37. SaGa Frontier Remastered - Switch
38. Metaloid: Origin - Switch
39. SaGa Scarlet Grace: Ambitions - Switch
40. Metro Exodus: The Two Colonels - PC
41. Metro Exodus: Sam's Story - PC
42. Panzer Paladin - Switch
43. Returnal - PS5
44. Dark Void Zero - DSiWare
45. Panzer Dragoon Saga - Saturn
46. Magic Knight Rayearth - Saturn
47. Cathedral - Switch
48. Final Fantasy VII Remake: INTERmission - PS5
49. Eterium - PC
50. A Street Cat's Tale - Switch

51. Bug Fables: The Everlasting Sapling - Switch
52. Banner of the Maid - Switch
53. CrossCode - Switch
54. Total Annihilation: The Core Contingency - PC
55. Ultima Underworld - PC
56. Betrayal at Krondor - PC
57. Assassin's Creed: Origins - PC
58. Axiom Verge 2 - Switch
59. Elderborn - PC
60. Hellbound - PC
61. Wargroove - Switch
62. Eye of the Beholder - PC
63. Quake: Dimension of the Past - PC
64. Quake: Dimension of the Machine - PC
65. Legends of Amberland: The Forgotten Crown - Switch
66. Anopek - PC
67. Baten Kaitos - Gamecube
68. No More Heroes 3 - Switch
69. Eye of the Beholder II - PC
70. Eye of the Beholder III - PC
71. Hedon II - PC
72. Deathloop - PC
73. Tales of Arise - PS5
74. Mechwarrior 5: Legend of the Kestrel Lancers - PC
75. Maneater: Truth Quest - PC
76. G String - PC
77. Thief (2014) - PC
78. Metroid Dread - Switch
79. Vomitoreum - PC
80. Severed Steel - PC

Severed Steel is a bite sized stylish FPS that takes a lot of inspiration from Mirror's Edge and Ghostrunner and cuts out everything that isn't just a bunch of intense combat rooms. It's incredibly intense and you feel like a total badass while playing, and it finishes up before it gets samey. It's not perfect, but it is amazing.

The story is very minimalist, told through textless stills between chapters. You wake up missing half of your left arm, with a bloody bandage on the stump. Cue you shooting dudes. At the end of the first chapter you gain an arm cannon for that arm, and you proceed through to apparently take out some CEO and then escape the city or something.

From a gameplay perspective the game is divided into a bunch of small levels. Each level will have some sort of objective, after which you open up the exit and need to leave. These might be simple, like "kill them all", or they might be some sort of environmental thing, like "destroy the servers". The final level of a chapter will instead automatically end when you finish the last objective. Levels are filled with dudes, and some levels will continue to spawn dudes until a trigger is hit.

The start of the show is the combat. You start off with your standard parkour stuff; jumping, wall running, sliding, diving through windows, everything you need for a John Woo fight scene. You also have the ability to slow down time, and you can configure the game to automatically slow time while you're doing any of these stunts. During a stunt you are effectively immune to bullets, which is good because you die in five hits. Fortunately, you gain health back for every kill (your health meter is a four leaf clover since you're lucky). You have a ton of mobility when you're doing any of these maneuvers; you can dive through the air, shoot a guy in front of you, then twist 180 degrees and shoot a guy behind you. Since you lack a left arm you cannot reload, so like Mirror's edge you toss guns away after using them (which is effective when applied to enemy faces). You can pull sidearms off of enemies as you move past them, and you can automatically pick up dropped guns from slain foes. As the game goes on you start to run into harder variants, like guards with armor or guards that can fly.

Remember that arm cannon I mentioned? That's also a thing. You have a limited amount of ammo with it, but it destroys enemies and can blast big holes in walls. The terrain is all destructible, but bullets really only make tiny holes while the arm cannon or enemies firing missiles makes big holes. This can let you blitz to an objective or take out enemies in cover. Your arm cannon only has three shots, but you can regenerate it from draining energy off of high tech enemy corpses (done automatically, and not done if you're full). It's a fun realization of what Red Faction promised all those years ago with the GeoMod engine.

Overall, it's an incredibly stylish and intense experience. While it's objectively short (three hours for me), it packs so much action in that time that it overall feels like the right length. I highly recommend this one.
Blizzard Entertainment Software Developer - All comments and views are my own and not representative of the company.
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