Games Beaten 2023

Anything that is gaming related that doesn't fit well anywhere else
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

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1. Kirby's Dream Land (GB)
2. River City Girls (Switch)
3. Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest (SNES)
4. The Simpsons (Arcade)
5. Illusion of Gaia (SNES)
6. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge (Switch)
7. Shining Force III [Scenario 1] (SAT)
8. Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (SNES)
9. Klonoa: Door to Phantomile (PS1)
10. Sonic the Hedgehog 3 (GEN)
11. X-Men Legends (PS2)
12. Snatcher (SCD)
13. Smash Remix (N64)
14. Golden Axe III (GEN)
15. Iridion II (GBA)
16. Fatal Fury Special (SNES)
17. Harmful Park (PS1)
18. Gunbird (SAT)
19. DoDonPachi (SAT)
20. Gley Lancer (GEN)
21. Streets of Rage 4 (Switch)*
22. Water Margin: A Tale of Clouds and Wind (GEN)
23. Demons of Asteborg (GEN)

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24. Super Mario Land (GB)

Super Mario Land on the Game Boy was one of the first video games I ever owned and played. I received it as a gift along with the original grey DMG Game Boy model, in I believe late 1991. I feel like Super Mario Land is looked as an odd duck in the series of late 80s and early 90s Mario titles, but it was the first Mario game I owned, so I see it in a bit of a different light. I'd like to revisit some of the GB games I have from back then and finish the few titles I owned but never beat when I was young, so here's the start of that journey!

Gameplay wise, the platforming is mostly what you'd expect from the early Mario games; however, there are some differences with the items, themes, and enemies here. In terms of items, there are still mushrooms which you turn you into Super Mario and stars that give you a temporary invincibility power; however, when you find a flower you will have the ability to toss a ball that has a bouncing ability, instead of the fireball we're used to. The other item that appears a bit different here is the 1 Up, which is now a heart, instead of a different type of mushroom. This change is understandable though, due to the green single color shade of the original GB. The other interesting difference gameplay wise, is that there are two stages that are side-scrolling shooter levels -- one comes earlier in the game with Mario piloting a submarine and the other towards the end of the game, with Mario piloting a plane. Also, you can potentially access a bonus mini game at the end of each level, where you have to stop a quick moving Mario to choose which area to stop in, and potentially earn extra lives or an item.

The the themes for the stages, which there are twelve of throughout the game (four worlds, each with three stages), is another feature that sets this title apart from the others in the series. You will encounter stages with references to ancient Egypt, Easter Island, the lost continent of Mu, and lastly a feudal Chinese theme. It was cool to finally experience and play through this last world. This was the only section that seemed odd to me, I guess because I don't think I reached it back then! Enemies wise, there are a lot of unique enemies in the game. Such as bouncing flies, flies that drop spears, seahorses, spiders, running stone statues, octopi, and lion like creatures. Also, the koopa troopas explode here, so move out of the way after you pounce on one! Another major difference here, is that you will not be going. up against Bowser at the finale, but an alien in a ship named Tatanga!

Graphics wise, Super Mario Land looks pretty standard for an 8-bit game at the time of release, and I think it's impressive what they did for an early handheld title. Nintendo's R&D 1 did a good job of simplifying the characters and level designs here. Everything is easily decipherable, and with the changes to the appearances of certain items, such as the 1 Up, there's little confusion to be had. Music wise, there are some very memorable tunes, jingles, and sound effects here. I especially like the songs for the opening stage, the Egyptian themed world, and the very last song in the game that plays once you finish it. That last tune is really joyous and uplifting. Also, I just want to mention the cover art here, because I love how all the unique enemies are featured and the running motion Mario is in. Great work by the illustrator!

Overall, while the graphics of Super Mario Land may not stand out compared to other titles on the Game Boy that would appear later on in the console's lifespan, I think the gameplay has aged well, and the title is still very fun. Revisiting the title brought back some great memories from the very beginning of my journeys in gaming. For anyone that's a fan of platformers, check this one out!
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by Note »

1. Kirby's Dream Land (GB)
2. River City Girls (Switch)
3. Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest (SNES)
4. The Simpsons (Arcade)
5. Illusion of Gaia (SNES)
6. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge (Switch)
7. Shining Force III [Scenario 1] (SAT)
8. Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (SNES)
9. Klonoa: Door to Phantomile (PS1)
10. Sonic the Hedgehog 3 (GEN)
11. X-Men Legends (PS2)
12. Snatcher (SCD)
13. Smash Remix (N64)
14. Golden Axe III (GEN)
15. Iridion II (GBA)
16. Fatal Fury Special (SNES)
17. Harmful Park (PS1)
18. Gunbird (SAT)
19. DoDonPachi (SAT)
20. Gley Lancer (GEN)
21. Streets of Rage 4 (Switch)*
22. Water Margin: A Tale of Clouds and Wind (GEN)
23. Demons of Asteborg (GEN)
24. Super Mario Land (GB)

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25. Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance II (PS2)

My partner and I played through the first Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance game on PS2 last year and really enjoyed it. That original game ended up surpassing my expectations and when we finished it, I knew we had to check out the next game in the series, along with the Champions of Norrath games, developed by Snowblind Studios. To my understanding, this game was developed by Black Isle Studios and Snowblind wasn't involved, even though the engine Snowblind built was used without their permission. We love sitting down for some action RPGs together, and my partner is especially a huge fan of the genre.

Gameplay wise, Dark Alliance II is very similar to the first game, with the same control scheme. However, the classes are different here, with a larger selection. This time around, you can choose from a human barbarian, a drow monk, a moon-elf necromancer, a dwarven rogue, and a human cleric. For this playthrough, my partner chose the necromancer class and I chose to be the cleric. In the first game, I chose to play as the dwarven fighter, who does not use any magic, so this was an interesting change for me and gave me a chance to play a character class that is a mix of melee and spellcasting. Having the ability to heal our party was a great feature of using the cleric, especially in the early game and during some of the boss fights. The story also has multiple tie-ins to the first game, with mentions of the first three heroes repeatedly occurring throughout the story. Another difference in the sequel is the ability to craft weapons. You can now add different stones or gems to weapons to upgrade or give weapons elemental powers. The weapon crafting system is a nice addition here, and we experimented a lot with it. Also, there are two unlockable characters. One is available after you beat the game, I believe on any difficulty, and the second is available if you finish it on the toughest difficulty.

Graphics wise, the game looks very similar to the first; however, I don't think this title has the variety of areas the first game had, as many of the dungeons look a bit drab. The first game had areas that were forests, mountains, ice caverns, swamplands, and so on, which gave the visuals some variety and color. I felt like most of the dungeons in this game were pretty dark, especially in the later game, which I understand was a trend at this time, but overall I prefer the variety in the earlier title. Regarding the music, the background tunes are pretty epic here, and compliment the gameplay for sure. The tunes here will definitely put you in the mood to mow through the waves of enemies coming at you. The voice acting here is pretty terrible, in a so bad it's good kind of way. It was comic relief for us between the action. We found ourselves mimic'ing and mocking most of the cut scenes.

We generally had a good time playing Dark Alliance II, but I have a good amount of criticisms and nitpicks. The first being the additional missions for each character seemed to be pretty minimal and for the most part it seems like you just have to pay the representative for that character a certain amount to gain experience points. For the cleric character, you would chat and pay a knight based in the church. This was a lost opportunity, as it would've been far better to have an additional tree of character specific sidequests. Also, I wish the characters had a bit more customization regarding their look. For example, with the cleric, I thought I'd be wearing some light colored armor and clothes based on the class, but instead my character's armor for a big chunk of the adventure was mostly a dingy brownish and purple, this was still the case even when I didn't have leather armor. Another criticism I have, is in the beginning of the game, there are a few dungeons that you have to escape in a certain time limit after you defeat the boss. I found this mechanic to be quite a nuisance and not much fun at all. There are swarms of enemies coming at you during this time as well, so you have to be careful not to get caught up in battle. I'm glad this mechanic didn't appear later in the game, but I wish it was totally cut altogether.

Overall, we did have a lot of fun playing Dark Alliance II and I'd hesitantly recommend it if you've played the first game and are looking for more. The additional character classes and the ability to craft weapons are nice features, but the less interesting story and drab dungeons take away from the experience. For action RPGs veterans that have played through many of the others out there, give it a go, but for more casual fans of the genre, I think you can stick with the original Dark Alliance release.
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Markies
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by Markies »

Markies' Games Beat List Of 2023!
***Denotes Replay For Completion***

***1. Dragon Valor (PS1)***
2. Breath Of Fire (GBA)
3. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge (NS)
4. World Of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse And Donald Duck (GEN)
5. XIII (GCN)
6. NES Remix Pack (WiiU)
7. Dr. Mario (GBC)
***8. Bully (PS2)***
9. Dragon's Crown (PS3)
10. Bangai-O (SDC)
11. Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii)
12. Destruction Derby (PS1)
13. X-Men Legends II: Rise Of Apocalypse (XBOX)
14. Vice: Project Doom (NES)
***15. Atelier Iris 3: Grand Phantasm (PS2)***
16. Terranigma (SNES)
***17. Super Street Fighter II (GEN)***
18. Guitar Hero II (PS2)
19. Kirby's Dream Land (GBC)
***20. Gunbird 2 (SDC)***
***21. Stella Deus: The Gate Of Eternity (PS2)***
22. I Am Setsuna (NS)
23. DuckTales: Remastered (WiiU)
***24. The Legend Of Zelda: A Link To The Past (SNES)***
***25. Chip 'N Dale Rescue Rangers 2 (NES)***
26. Fire Emblem: The Blazing Blade (GBA)
27. Prince Of Persia: The Two Thrones (XBOX)
28. Baten Kaitos Origins (GCN)
29. Virtua Racing (GEN)
**30. Breath Of Fire III (PS1)***
31. Metroid II: Return Of Samus (GBC)
***32. Chameleon Twist (N64)***
33. Resident Evil 4 (Wii)
34. College Slam (SNES)

35. Hyrule Warriors (WiiU)

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I beat Hyrule Warriors on the Nintendo WiiU this evening!

For the longest time, I had always been interested in the Dynasty Warriors games. I love some simple hack and slash fun and the games seemed to be perfect for me. However, I never knew where to start or which one to pick up first. Plus, they were mostly on the PS2 and I had plenty games for that system already. So, I never took the leap. However, when I got my WiiU with a much smaller Wishlist, it would be easier to pick up games for that system. I had always wanted to play Hyrule Warriors and I heard it was a great introduction to the series, so I decided to pick it up at a local game store. I had been playing too many grind heavy RPG's, so I wanted a break and I decided to give Hyrule Warriors a shot.

I am really glad that I went on a limb here because Hyrule Warriors was an absolute blast to play. It was a great introduction to the Dynasty Warriors and it didn't spoil too many Zelda games, even though I hadn't played Twilight Princess or Skyward Sword and those characters are featured rather prominently. Each map is a giant battlefield with thousands of people on them. As the hero, you go about capturing areas, beating objectives and then defeating bosses at the end of the stage. It can all be a little repetitive, but dang isn't it just a blast to play. You do spend most of your time playing as Link, but you also play as many other Zelda characters and that is a real treat. Each one controls a little bit different, so it makes your combos and your attacks a bit more unique. Most of the stages are the same, but some of them have a little bit of nuisances compared to others to separate them from each other. The story is also rather interesting as it does fall into the typical Zelda fair, but it does have enough twists and turns to keep me guessing throughout the whole game. Also, the graphics are some of the best I've ever seen. With the characters looking stunning and the maps having thousands of soldiers, it is impressive what the WiiU can handle.

Overall, I absolutely loved Hyrule Warriors. I love that Nintendo took a chance and made such an interesting game for one of its largest franchises. This was an absolute blast and one that will stick with me for quite a while. With more games on the Switch, this is a series I would love to continue. For some enjoyable hacking and slashing, anybody would enjoy this title!
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

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Previous Years: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022

First 50:

51. This Way Madness Lies - PC
52. Mechwarrior 5: Mercenaries: The Dragon's Gambit - PC
53. Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty - PC
54. Sprawl - PC
55. Zortch - PC
56. Ion Fury: Aftershock - PC
57. Spider-Man 2 - PS5
58. Alan Wake II - PC
59. Ghostrunner II - PC

The original Ghostrunner caught me by surprise; it combined the parkour of Mirror's Edge with a fast-paced one-hit-kill combat system that required you to approach things as fast puzzles. Ghostrunner II builds on that foundation, presenting the same base gameplay, while adding in some new elements and tweaking some of the existing ones. For the most part it succeeds at what it's doing, though at times it feels like the new stuff just isn't as good as the base.

The game is set in the aftermath of the first game. Turns out, when you topple the autocracy of a post-apocalyptic society everyone doesn't just sit around and sing kumbaya. You begin the game trying to put down some fighting that threatens the reactor of the tower, but soon the real antagonists of the game rear their head. Some first generation ghostrunners are looking to cause trouble, and you need to figure out why.

Shortly after this you discover the first new thing; in between some missions the game sends you back to a home base, where you can chat with NPCs and upgrade your skills. You gain currency from killing dudes, as well as a pickup that gives you capacity. You slot skills into squares, rather than doing the Tetris-style trying to make everything cool fit. I felt the second game's system works better, as many of the choices in the first one were false choices; you generally wanted to take several pieces that complemented each other, so you were far more restricted than the system might otherwise make you think.

The big new feature for combat is the block. In the first game you could deflect enemy attacks with a well timed slash, but would eat it if your timing was off. Here you have a block button which adds a lot more safety, as the block is what deflects if you do it at the right moment. Blocking eats your stamina, though, so you can't just tank a machine gun barrage. It makes things a bit more forgiving.

About halfway through the game the next new system is introduced; the bike. In this game you get to go outside the tower and explore the ruins of the world. A few of the levels are just straight up bike rides, while others are stretches of bike movement followed by on foot stuff to open the path up. The bike sells the scope of the devastation, but it's a pretty skippable system, honestly. This is the primary system that feels like it could have used more time in the oven; it feels a lot more memorization based like an R-Type game to handle the obstacles at the speed you're forced into, and sometimes the telegraphing is bad (as in, you don't realize this is a jump you need to boost until it's too late).

Overall, it's a worth sequel to the first, but very much falls into the "get if you want more, skip if you didn't like the first" realm.
Blizzard Entertainment Software Developer - All comments and views are my own and not representative of the company.
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Markies
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by Markies »

Markies' Games Beat List Of 2023!
***Denotes Replay For Completion***

***1. Dragon Valor (PS1)***
2. Breath Of Fire (GBA)
3. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge (NS)
4. World Of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse And Donald Duck (GEN)
5. XIII (GCN)
6. NES Remix Pack (WiiU)
7. Dr. Mario (GBC)
***8. Bully (PS2)***
9. Dragon's Crown (PS3)
10. Bangai-O (SDC)
11. Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii)
12. Destruction Derby (PS1)
13. X-Men Legends II: Rise Of Apocalypse (XBOX)
14. Vice: Project Doom (NES)
***15. Atelier Iris 3: Grand Phantasm (PS2)***
16. Terranigma (SNES)
***17. Super Street Fighter II (GEN)***
18. Guitar Hero II (PS2)
19. Kirby's Dream Land (GBC)
***20. Gunbird 2 (SDC)***
***21. Stella Deus: The Gate Of Eternity (PS2)***
22. I Am Setsuna (NS)
23. DuckTales: Remastered (WiiU)
***24. The Legend Of Zelda: A Link To The Past (SNES)***
***25. Chip 'N Dale Rescue Rangers 2 (NES)***
26. Fire Emblem: The Blazing Blade (GBA)
27. Prince Of Persia: The Two Thrones (XBOX)
28. Baten Kaitos Origins (GCN)
29. Virtua Racing (GEN)
**30. Breath Of Fire III (PS1)***
31. Metroid II: Return Of Samus (GBC)
***32. Chameleon Twist (N64)***
33. Resident Evil 4 (Wii)
34. College Slam (SNES)
35. Hyrule Warriors (WiiU)

36. Tengen Tetris (NES)

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I completed Tengen Tetris on the Nintendo Entertainment System this evening!

Many years ago, I drove down to the 1984 Arcade with some friends of mine. It is one of the best Arcades in the company where high scores of Arcade games have been posted. One of the cabinets they had their was the Atari Arcade version of Tetris. I had always heard about the game, but to see it out in the wild was something else. So, for quite a while, the Tengen version of Tetris on NES became my white whale. Well, last year at my local Retro Gaming Convention, I found a copy for a reasonable price. I had to have it and after so many months, I finally decided to play the game.

The Tengen version of Tetris does off some unique play modes in comparison to the NES version. For one, there is a co-operative mode. With the computer or a friend, two pieces fall at the same time with each person controlling one of the pieces. You work together to fill a larger area and try to get as many points as possible. Its rather interesting and adds a unique twist to Tetris that I had never seen before. Besides that, all the other game modes are the same. Single player is just infinite mode. You can battle the computer, but you don't throw lines of garbage at each other. You can also battle your friend, but in these modes, all you are doing is competing for a higher score. And then between levels, you get a little diddy and some dancers coming in, so that is a very nice touch. Also, they make the game feel much more Russian than the NES version.

When it comes to video games, I have three parts vying for control. A part of me is a collector where I want to amass a large collection of Retro Video Games. A part of me is a player where I want to play and beat all of these Retro Video Games. Finally, a part of me is a completionist where I want to experience everything a game has to offer. For Tengen Tetris, the collector part won out compared to the other sides. I bought the game because its an interesting piece, a unique concept and I love Tetris. It's a game I play every weekend. Is it a game everybody should own? Probably not, especially considering the price tag. The game is very shallow to play and offers little replay value. But, for the NES collector, this was a great addition to my collection and one that I proudly own until the day I die. With that in mind, I am glad I played, but I am more happy that I own it.
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by PartridgeSenpai »

Partridge Senpai's 2023 Beaten Games:
Previously: 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
* indicates a repeat

1~51

52. Gyakuten Saiban 3 (GBA) *
53. Pokemon Gold (GBC)

54. Beltlogger 9 (PS1)

This was a game I picked up on a whim after finding it for just 100 yen at my local Book Off. The cover looked neat, the pictures of it on google looked cool, and the handful of old review scores I found for it were positive on both the English and Japanese side of things. Even if it ended up being terrible, it was still just 100 yen at the end of the day. My final game-clock was 2.5 hours, but that doesn’t seem to count times in pause menus or cutscenes (of which there are many) at all, so I’d reckon my actual time with this game was something closer to like 4-ish hours. I played the Japanese version of the game on real hardware.

The year is 2096, and humanity has been colonizing the solar system for many decades now. Several days ago, the titular Beltlogger 9, a research and mining station in the asteroid belt, sent out a distress signal, and nothing has been heard from them since. You play as Sergeant Patric Salu (that’s how they spell it <w>), the singular surviving member of the beta assault team of the small military contingent sent there to figure out just what’s going on in this research station that is clearly not what it seems to be.

Bursting with cutscenes and voice acted dialogue, Beltlogger 9 is really pushing the limits of what storytelling in games could be in 1996 with this relatively new CD-based format. Tech-wise, nothing it’s doing is particularly new or special, of course, but it regardless uses what it has very adeptly. I’m not sure I’d go *quite* as far as to call this an outright horror game, but they’re definitely taking a lot of inspiration from sci-fi horror films of previous decades to create the atmosphere of grim isolation the game takes place in. It’s a relatively short story, but it does a lot with its small cast and quick pacing. It didn’t have quite as dark an ending as I was predicting (or as its genre conventions would otherwise lead you to predict it would), but I really liked what they did with it either way. It’s a well told story with a nice and interesting moral at the end, and a good story is certainly not what I was expecting from a PS1-developed Quake-like game from 1996.

Now while I haven’t played Quake myself, I’m more than familiar enough with id’s shooters to know that Beltlogger 9 is quite clearly going for that style of gameplay (at least in the broad strokes of things). It’s a sci-fi 3D FPS game that’s largely corridor-based, where you explore one stage at a time (22 in total) looking for keys to doors, finding new weapons and passive options to equip, and fighting the nasty robotic enemies that come your way. You also have a shield you can manually activate to guard yourself when you’re not firing, and while it’s not the hardest thing in the world, it does take some practice to get used to switching between raising your shield and counter attacking against more aggressive enemy types.

You have 5 different weapons (a rifle, a laser, a missile launcher, a heat-seeking missile system, and a big AOE bomb super weapon) that you can switch between on the fly as well as find new variants of that switch up things like fire rate and power. You can also find stuff like health and energy upgrades, miscellaneous items, audio logs of the crew, and even upgrade bits to simply make your existing weapons stronger. Those extra optional passives are no joke either, as they can do anything from make your energy weapons take less energy, your energy itself recharge faster, or even let you run WAY faster. What it comes down to is that exploration generally feels very well rewarded, and I always wanted to see what was around the next corner (even if it was just a new enemy to mulch my face off XP).

The game isn’t *that* hard, ultimately, though for someone relatively inexperienced with FPS games (especially pre-analog stick aiming ones like this), that was very much appreciated (though it’s certainly worth pointing out that this game’s English-language cousin, BRAHMA Force: Assault on Beltlogger 9, *does* have a significant difficulty boost compared to this version that I played). The bosses were easily the toughest general parts of the game, but those were also some of the coolest parts for sure as well, and new boss fights were always a treat to encounter if only to see their mechanical designs.

The mechanical designs and presentation in general are really good in this game. A large reason for the former is that they actually got one of the major mechanical designers for Z and ZZ Gundam to do the robot designs for this game, and it really shows with just how striking they look (with the final boss being a particular favorite of mine). The music is also very fun, with the bosses having some great tracks to fight them to, and the general ambient music making for a great creepy atmosphere to explore the base in. Having to use R2 and L2 to look up and down just added to that whole vibe of “in an awkward battle mech in a weird place” too~. The game is still visually absolutely an early-life PS1 3D game (complete with the texture warping in the walls that that kind of thing entails), but it really rocks the look, imo, and it made for a really fun time~.

Verdict: Recommended. Even though this sort of thing is generally quite far from my genre of choice, I ended up having a really great time with it! It’s worth keeping in mind that the localizations are a fair bit harder (and less fair, from the sounds of things), and I can’t speak to the quality of the localization either, but in Japanese at least, this was a really cool sci-fi action game with a story I really enjoyed my time with. If you like sci-fi or just FPS games and you don’t mind having to use pre-analog stick aiming controls, this is a really fun and short game that’s really worth checking out~.
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Raging Justice
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by Raging Justice »

Markies wrote:Markies' Games Beat List Of 2023!
***Denotes Replay For Completion***

***1. Dragon Valor (PS1)***
2. Breath Of Fire (GBA)
3. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge (NS)
4. World Of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse And Donald Duck (GEN)
5. XIII (GCN)
6. NES Remix Pack (WiiU)
7. Dr. Mario (GBC)
***8. Bully (PS2)***
9. Dragon's Crown (PS3)
10. Bangai-O (SDC)
11. Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii)
12. Destruction Derby (PS1)
13. X-Men Legends II: Rise Of Apocalypse (XBOX)
14. Vice: Project Doom (NES)
***15. Atelier Iris 3: Grand Phantasm (PS2)***
16. Terranigma (SNES)
***17. Super Street Fighter II (GEN)***
18. Guitar Hero II (PS2)
19. Kirby's Dream Land (GBC)
***20. Gunbird 2 (SDC)***
***21. Stella Deus: The Gate Of Eternity (PS2)***
22. I Am Setsuna (NS)
23. DuckTales: Remastered (WiiU)
***24. The Legend Of Zelda: A Link To The Past (SNES)***
***25. Chip 'N Dale Rescue Rangers 2 (NES)***
26. Fire Emblem: The Blazing Blade (GBA)
27. Prince Of Persia: The Two Thrones (XBOX)
28. Baten Kaitos Origins (GCN)
29. Virtua Racing (GEN)
**30. Breath Of Fire III (PS1)***
31. Metroid II: Return Of Samus (GBC)
***32. Chameleon Twist (N64)***
33. Resident Evil 4 (Wii)
34. College Slam (SNES)

35. Hyrule Warriors (WiiU)

Image

I beat Hyrule Warriors on the Nintendo WiiU this evening!

For the longest time, I had always been interested in the Dynasty Warriors games. I love some simple hack and slash fun and the games seemed to be perfect for me. However, I never knew where to start or which one to pick up first. Plus, they were mostly on the PS2 and I had plenty games for that system already. So, I never took the leap. However, when I got my WiiU with a much smaller Wishlist, it would be easier to pick up games for that system. I had always wanted to play Hyrule Warriors and I heard it was a great introduction to the series, so I decided to pick it up at a local game store. I had been playing too many grind heavy RPG's, so I wanted a break and I decided to give Hyrule Warriors a shot.

I am really glad that I went on a limb here because Hyrule Warriors was an absolute blast to play. It was a great introduction to the Dynasty Warriors and it didn't spoil too many Zelda games, even though I hadn't played Twilight Princess or Skyward Sword and those characters are featured rather prominently. Each map is a giant battlefield with thousands of people on them. As the hero, you go about capturing areas, beating objectives and then defeating bosses at the end of the stage. It can all be a little repetitive, but dang isn't it just a blast to play. You do spend most of your time playing as Link, but you also play as many other Zelda characters and that is a real treat. Each one controls a little bit different, so it makes your combos and your attacks a bit more unique. Most of the stages are the same, but some of them have a little bit of nuisances compared to others to separate them from each other. The story is also rather interesting as it does fall into the typical Zelda fair, but it does have enough twists and turns to keep me guessing throughout the whole game. Also, the graphics are some of the best I've ever seen. With the characters looking stunning and the maps having thousands of soldiers, it is impressive what the WiiU can handle.

Overall, I absolutely loved Hyrule Warriors. I love that Nintendo took a chance and made such an interesting game for one of its largest franchises. This was an absolute blast and one that will stick with me for quite a while. With more games on the Switch, this is a series I would love to continue. For some enjoyable hacking and slashing, anybody would enjoy this title!


Hyrule Warriors is a great game. If you want to try some similar games, The success of Hyrule Warriors led to lots of other fun mashups. I think Fire Emblem Warriors is even better than Hyrule Warriors and has a little bit more of a traditional Dynasty Warriors feel, while still incorporating some of the stuff that made Hyrule Warriors great. Dragon Quest Heroes The World Tree's Woe and the Blight Below is pretty good. It got a sequel too. Hyrule Warriors got a follow up in Age of Calamity. I played the first level and thought it was pretty great. It's heavily based on Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

As for the Dynasty Warriors series itself, DW 8 is a great entry point and one of the better ones in the series, some might even say the best one. If you want to try some older ones on PS 2, Dynasty Warriors 3 and 5 were pretty great.

Typically, after people get into the Dynasty Warriors games they check out Samurai Warriors. I'm not quite as well versed in those, but I heard SW 4 is pretty great.

Then there are the big crossover games that mix characters from Dynasty Warriors and Samurai Warriors, characters from other Koei Tecmo games (like Ninja Gaiden and even Tecmo's Deception series), and various characters from myths, legends, and history (like Joan of Arc or some of the Greek gods). Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate is the one people recommend the most and it's pretty great.
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by Ack »

First 50:
1. Northern Journey (PC)(FPS)
2. Hatchpunk (PC)(FPS)
3. Might and Magic IX (PC)(RPG)
4. Star Wars: Empire at War (PC)(RTS)
5. Chasm: The Rift (PC)(FPS)
6. Real Heroes: Firefighter HD (PC)(FPS)
7. CULTIC (PC)(FPS)
8. Consortium (PC)(FPS)

9. Brothers in Arms: Road to Hill 30 (PC)(FPS)
10. Forgive Me, Father (PC)(FPS)

11. Teomim Island (PC)(FPS)
12. Regions of Ruin (PC)(Action RPG)
13. Void Bastards (PC)(FPS)

14. Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad - Single Player (PC)(FPS)
15. Quake: Scourge of Armagon (PC)(FPS)
16. Quake: Dissolution of Eternity (PC)(FPS)

17. Bioshock Infinite (PC)(FPS)
18. Chop Goblins (PC)(FPS)
19. Ravenloft: Stone Prophet (PC)(RPG)
20. Halfway (PC)(Tactical Strategy)
21. Brothers in Arms: Earned in Blood (PC)(FPS)
22. Might and Magic X - Legacy (PC)(RPG)
23. Civilization IV (PC)(4X Strategy)

24. Operation Body Count (PC)(FPS)
25. WW2 Rebuilder (PC)(Simulation)
26. Rogue Heroes: Ruins of Tasos (PC)(Action-Adventure)
27. The Ascent: Cyber Heist (PC)(Top-Down Shooter)
28. Bright Memory Infinite (PC)(FPS)

29. Tuin (PC)(Farming Sim)
30. Warhammer 40,000: Boltgun (PC)(FPS)
31. Warhammer 40,000: Shootas, Blood & Teef (PC)(Run and Gun)

32. Dark Messiah of Might and Magic (PC)(RPG)
33. Subnautica (PC)(Action-Adventure)
34. Frog Detective 3: Corruption in Cowboy County (PC)(Adventure)
35. The Shore (PC)(Horror Adventure)
36. Embr (PC)(Action)
37. That Which Gave Chase (PC)(Horror Adventure)
38. Witch Hunt (PC)(Horror FPS)

39. Amanda the Adventurer (PC)(Horror Adventure)
40. Shadows Peak (PC)(Horror FPS)
41. Berserk Mode (PC)(FPS)
42. Soul Calibur 2 (Arcade)(Fighting)

43. Zortch (PC)(FPS)
44. Bloodhound (PC)(FPS)
45. Poker Night at the Inventory (PC)(Traditional)
46. Ghostlore (PC)(Action RPG)

47. TimeShifters (PC)(FPS)
48. Beacon Pines (PC)(Narrative Adventure)

49. Amid Evil: The Black Labyrinth (PC)(FPS)
50. LEGO Brick Tales (PC)(Adventure)

51. Contraband Police (PC)(FPS)
52. Quake II (PC)(FPS)
53. Quake II: The Reckoning (PC)(FPS)
54. Quake II: Ground Zero (PC)(FPS)
55. Quake II 64 (PC)(FPS)
56. Quake II: Call of the Machine (PC)(FPS)

57. Chernobylite (PC)(FPS/RPG)
58. Pedro's Adventures in Spanish (PC)(Point-and-Click Adventure)

59. CULTIC: Interlude (PC)(FPS)
60. Station to Station (PC)(Puzzle)
61. Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen (PC)(RPG)

Dragon's Dogma is a fantasy RPG set in a medieval Europe-based world, where a dragon takes your heart quite literally, and you must then seek it out and slay it. People whose hearts have been eaten by dragons are known as Arisen in this world, because yes, this is apparently that common of a phenomenon, but it does have its benefits. For instance, you can recruit human-like pawns to fight as your allies, compliment your strategies and skills, carry gear, and learn more about locales and enemies so they can help you fight better too. They do this by talking constantly, but that's ok; I only needed to hear "Wolves hunt in packs" about 70 times before I got the concept.

When I first went into this, I was expecting something closer to Dark Souls. This turned out to be wrong, and one of my friends assures me that a better comparison would be the Monster Hunter series. The game is very class-based, so things like blocking and ranged attacks are only available if you are the proper class. But you can also select your pawns' classes, so you must build a party to compliment your style. It's also worth noting that the Arisen has a trio of unique hybrid classes that the pawns cannot access, so you're probably going to still be doing the heavy lifting.

As you advance, the world opens up to offer tougher enemies, new areas to explore, and more quests. Some of these quests are locked out after in-game events, so it's worth doing whatever pops up and revisiting old areas to see what new things may have opened up for experience and gold. Also, some of these quests are parts of chains, so if you miss something, you may miss a long set of quests and rewards. Some of these quests may also provide background information about the world and the plot, so keep an eye out for them.

Leveling is of course a key part of getting tougher, as is earning points for skills, unlocking them, and building out your character. But another key element is leveling up your gear. Everything you wear can be improved, even eventually becoming "dragon-forged", where you attain an ultimate level after killing a dragon-type creature. It's not a guarantee, but it's worth seeking some of the toughest fights just for this.

And once you beat the game, you have post-game content, including a unique dungeon involving throwing yourself in a giant pit as well as seeking the true ending. So don't think you're done just because you killed the big bad.

And then you have the Dark Arisen section, an expansion dungeon that reminds me more of Castlevania than Dragon's Dogma. It's a descent into darkness, with harder fights and better gear than the base game. Plus, you can expand upon the dragonforged system to get even better gear. But your actions have consequences, so dead enemies may attract tougher carrion feeders happy to turn to you for fresh meat. Or worse, Death itself may arrive to challenge you. And at the end, you have a massive daemonic entity to take out, which only leads to things getting even harder and an even greater challenge waiting for you at the bottom of the dungeon. Dark Arisen is actually my favorite part of the whole game and is exactly what I was hoping for when I started this journey.

Dragon's Dogma is a fun game, and I have already sunk a lot of time into it. But the Dark Arisen expansion? That's why I'm still going and continuing to play. I recommend it for folks looking for a new action-focused RPG to seek out.
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by PartridgeSenpai »

Partridge Senpai's 2023 Beaten Games:
Previously: 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
* indicates a repeat

1~51

52. Gyakuten Saiban 3 (GBA) *
53. Pokemon Gold (GBC)
54. Beltlogger 9 (PS1)

55. 64 De Hakken!! Tamagotchi: Minna De Tamagotchi World (N64)

This is a game I’ve seen around in Book Off and such for super cheap for years now, but I’ve never really paid it any mind. It was only a few days back that I actually sat down and looked up what this game actually was, and much to my surprise, it’s a Mario Party-clone by HudsonSoft!? Now, to be more accurate, though Hudson did co-develop it, so far as I can tell, the main developer was Bandai, and this shares virtually no staff the series that would eventually be Mario Party (as this came out in 1997, one year *before* the first Mario Party). Regardless, seeing how weird and bad these types of games can be is something I love doing, and it just so happens that my partner also is a huge Tamagotchi fan, so snagging this for the 100 yen it was going for was an absolute no-brainer. This game doesn’t really have a single-player mode as such, and you can actually view the credits whenever you want in the options menu, so I just played until I won a round and called this one “beaten” (and then played a few more rounds after that for good measure). I spent about 4 or so hours playing it on real hardware.

This game actually *does* have a narrative of sorts despite such a thing being so generally unnecessary in a party game like this. Professor Banzou, the man who discovered Tamagotchi, is brooding on a bridge, cursing his bad luck with the ladies despite the great discovery he’s made. All of a sudden, a tiny spaceship full of Tamagotchi (in the middle of fighting over food) fall down from orbit and crash into his head, knocking him into the river. As he’s shouting at them for hurting him, he’s struck with a brilliant idea, and runs off to his laboratory to begin work. A week later, he’s developed a new type of Tamagotchi House, a large-size one that can accommodate four Tamagotchi at once! And such is the excuse for why four Tamagotchi are about to compete to see who can grow up the fastest in this giant new Tamagotchi house XD. It’s a very silly story and not really necessary to make the game work or anything, but it’s very charmingly animated (not to mention totally voice acted, which is pretty darn impressive for the N64 in ’97), and it sets up the action just fine.

The actual gameplay of Tamagotchi 64 (as I’m going to be referring to it here for the sake of brevity) is certainly Mario Party-ish in that it’s a four-player board game with mini-games as well, but it’s ultimately not *that* much like Mario Party (and is a lot more like later Tamagotchi party games would be, as it so happens). Your goal, as eluded to earlier, is to be the first to completely grow up, which here means to fill up the power meter four times. The game has only one board, and the four of you go around this board by rolling a die and landing on spaces. There are spaces that just make your power meter go up and down, ones that give you special item cards to use whenever you want, and even ones that activate a mini-game for you all to play, but no matter what you land on, you then get to take care of your Tamagotchi. Just like the little PDA-like toys, Tamagotchis have food and play meters that need to be taken care of, and when they’re sick they need curing, when they’re bad (refuse to eat or play) they need scolding, and when they’ve pooped you’ve gotta clean it up. This is used by expending caring points, and you get a big refill of caring points by passing Go at the start of the board (or by landing on special fitness spaces).

While it’s all a bit complicated when you write it out on paper like this, it’s actually quite self-explanatory in practice. You generally want to feed your Tamagotchi when it’s hungry because that’s an easy way to get power points, and the play option (while costing less) activates a simple mini-game that can be lost, earning you nothing. Keeping your play and food meters high means you get more power points (I think?), and it’s just generally good for keeping your Tamagotchi happy and growing. However, despite how simple the gameplay actually is, the devil is reallly in the details here, and this game has some *very* stiff problems when it comes to its execution.

While there are little things like the lack of a pause button that just sorta generally suck, the main issue with this game is that a *LOT* of your ability to win is based on how lucky you’re getting. Where you’re landing will dictate a lot of how much you’re growing (or not growing), and how good your luck is there will determine the pace of the game a LOT. You don’t have a star to purchase like in Mario Party to aim for, so that really focuses a lot of the game’s momentum on turn-to-turn gameplay. This means it can feel really discouraging if you’re just having awful luck and/or the other players are beating up on you a lot (with card-items or other such things).

Compared to something like Mario Party, where there’s a (usually) skill-based mini-game at the end of every turn, mini-games in Tamagotchi 64 are very rare, as they require landing on a special space to activate. This isn’t even mentioning how the mini-games themselves may not be awful, but they do suffer very badly in a non-multiplayer environment. The CPUs are just SO impossibly good at so many of them that it feels pointless to even try a lot of the time (and these CPUs also lack any difficulty selections either). The icing on the cake there is that not only do the mini-games have no practice option, but they also don’t have a prompt to go past the instructions screen to start playing them. That instructions screen is only on screen for 3 or 4 seconds, so you better read and understand them quick if you wanna actually have a chance of winning! <w>

Summing it up succinctly, there just isn't a lot a player can do to actually affect their chances of winning. Just *so* much of the game is simply down to luck that it makes you wonder why you should even try when you're losing. By that same token, the games are so generally short that you really may as well try, as the other players may soon tumble into the same bad luck that's been ruining your time for the past however long soon enough XD. I have my suspicions that there's an internal catchup mechanic where the computer will give good fortune to a certain player to make it so the end game has a *bit* more tension to it, but that's just a hypothesis, really. While simply getting lucky enough may be fine for a very simple children's board game, it makes for a very unsatisfying gameplay loop for a video game (especially playing by yourself against CPUs), so if you're going to have a really fun time with this one, friends are very highly recommended.

The presentation, at least, is very well done. Not only are the opening and ending cutscenes voice acted for Professor Banzou and his assistant Mikachu, but the game has a great and pumping soundtrack too. I can’t help but watch the intro every time I boot up the game because the music is just so much fun x3. It even has a vocal track that plays during special scenes, which is an achievement in and of itself for the N64. The graphics are also really good. They’re very evocative of both the general art style of Tamagotchi as well as of the little digital pet toys themselves (with the play-command mini-games even having bleep-bloop sound effects to go with them just like the digital pet toys do x3). The game’s screen has the board game down below and a little view to the pets themselves up top, and watching their idle animations (from feeling hungry to just playing around in a giant udon bowl) while they wait for their turn is absolutely adorable. Every Tamagotchi has bespoke animations for those little idle bits as well, so it really makes them come to life in a way that fits the setting perfectly.

Verdict: Hesitantly Recommended. This isn’t a bad game, and I definitely feel I got my money’s worth for the 100 yen I paid for it, but it’s definitely difficult to recommend at the end of the day. The relatively unsatisfying gameplay loop combined with only a dozen or so mini-games and just a singular board to play on means that the game starts to feel stale quite fast. While what’s here isn’t necessarily awful, even on its worst day, that doesn’t really change how there are still much better options on this console for party games in a board game style. If you’re a big Tamagotchi fan or a big Mario Party fan, then this one might be worth checking out, but if you’re more of a casual party game fan (and especially if you have no one to play with), then this is probably a game that’s going to end up giving you more frustration than fun at the end of the day.


----

56. Koudelka (PS1)

After playing through the Shadow Hearts series earlier this year, this game was an absolute must-play on my list. Being effectively Shadow Hearts 0, there was just no way I could go through all the effort of playing through the PS2 Shadow Hearts games and just ignore where the whole series started. I’ve had this game for a few weeks now, and this last weekend was the first time since I bought it where I haven’t been otherwise occupied with another longer game, so I felt it was high time I finally got to seeing the last Shadow Hearts game I hadn’t yet seen~. It took me around 14 hours to play through the Japanese version of the game and get the best ending, and I did it all on real hardware.

Koudelka takes place in a tiny Welsh town of Aberystwyth, our titular character breaks into a mysterious old monastery and comes across a near dying thief, Edward. After a rocky meet and greet between the two of them as they fight off the monster that nearly took Edward’s life, they explore further into the monastery and come across the suspiciously nice caretakers of the place and eventually a third companion, a Bishop named James. The three of them must brave the horrors of the monastery and put the things haunting there to rest, or die trying.

It’s honestly a bit hard to give much of a summary, or even an intro, to Koudelka’s story without feeling like I’m either going far too into detail or skipping over far too much. Though an RPG, Koudelka’s story almost feels more like a stage play in how the characters interact with one another, and the VA just adds *so* much to an already stellar script. As you venture further and further into the mansion, the larger narrative of what took place there slowly unfurls, and what you’re left with is an excellently told story of identity, tragedy, trauma, and discovery. The VA is actually as excellent as it is because, in an extremely strange move for the time, Sacnoth actually got the voice actors together on a stage and had them read their lines to one another almost as if it were an actual play. That’s why Koudelka has such long, meaty, and well-acted cutscenes that feel like they’ve been taken out of a stage play: They almost literally have been xD. It all adds up to something really excellent, and even though I had already had this game introduced to me as one with an excellent narrative, I found it absolutely lived up to the hype. Though it’s a short game as far as PS1 RPGs go (especially for a 4-disc PS1 RPG), it’s easily one of the best written games on the system, as far as I’m concerned.

Mechanically is where Koudelka is a bit more of a mess ^^;. Now I’d heard that Koudelka was something like a mechanical disaster, and I found that to be quite far from the truth. The actual systems at play here really have very little wrong with them, but there’s just so much chaff here that it can be very overwhelming at times. Koudelka is part turn-based RPG and part survival horror. On the latter, we have a game that feels a *lot* like we’re going through Resident Evil’s Spencer Mansion or some equivalent thereof, with the whole game taking place inside one building and tons of fixed camera angles to navigate it through. It honestly is presented so much like a survival horror game that it threw me off when the game didn’t have tank controls XD. Though even while the game has no actual action combat (not even quick time events) to speak of, the puzzle solving and inventory management you’ll be doing is going to feel very familiar to anyone who’s played any of the PS1 Resident Evil games, though the puzzles themselves are very rarely all that difficult, thankfully.

On the RPG side of things, we have something that doesn’t have any great analogue, because it’s got mechanical aspects of games from Seiken Densetsu (which the director/composer/writer previously worked on) to even things like the first Persona game and SMT stuff. There’s a lot to cover, but lets start with your characters themselves. All three of your characters are actually functionally identical. They all have access to the same items, equipment, and even spells. The only differences between them come down to how you choose to level up their stats. Koudelka’s stats start her out as a good spell caster and Edward’s make him an obvious melee user, but there’s nothing saying you can’t stick it out and make Koudelka your brawler and Edward your caster. Is it sub-optimal in the early game? Absolutely. But it’s not actually mechanically going to be any better or worse, so you have a lot of wiggle room there.

All of that is down to how leveling up works. In a fashion very much like how Atlus loved designing their progression systems back in the 90’s, you get no base stat upgrades upon leveling up. Instead, you get four points to plop into any of your 8 stats that you want. Strength, vitality, and dexterity are your melee-focused stats (being physical-based power, defense/HP, and accuracy), with intelligence, piety, and mental being their magic and MP-focused counterparts. Agility is how fast you are (and more speed is more turns, very much like something like FFX would later do stuff, just with no visible progress bar), and luck is just sorta “makes you a lil’ better at everything”. It’s certainly intimidating at first, but it’s all explained in a very straightforward fashion, and the level curve is also very quick once you make it off of disc 1, so even changing your mind and grinding out a few levels to take on a boss you’re struggling with isn’t actually that big of an ask either.

But then we get to the clutter, you see. First we have the battle system, which is this weird grid-based thing that plays like an easier/better designed version of Persona 1’s awful grid stuff. Then we have the spells themselves, which you get more of as you beat more bosses. You also start with a buff spell for each of the 8 stats, and MP is going to be something of an issue regardless, at least in the early game. On top of all that, you also have your spells being able to upgrade, and they do so in a very Seiken Densetsu fashion (use them enough and they level up), and you need to use them a LOT of times to level them up.

You also have no money or shops in this game, so all weapons, accessories, and armor need to be found either in the environment or as drops off of enemies, and a very unlucky run can leave you really hurting for that stuff *especially* in the early game. Did I mention your weapons can break? Sure, your guns will run out of ammo, that makes sense, but *all* melee weapons will eventually break, so even if you’re building proficiency levels (again, very Seiken Densetsu) in one weapon, if you can’t find any more of them, you’re going to need to swap to something else. At least you’ll always have your fists, if nothing else, but the fickleness of weapons is a very big worry, particularly in the early game, with how difficult they are to acquire.

However, ALL that said, the big thing I realized is that almost none of it actually matters. Koudelka is one of *many* RPGs I’ve played that have a lot of systems that just ultimately don’t matter nearly as much as you might think they do at first. Heck, it isn’t even the only Shadow Hearts game to struggle with that XD. Spells leveling up? Sure, it takes a while, but all it gets you is better AOE on them, and that AOE is almost never actually useful. The only real change gained from spells leveling up is that they’re going to cost more from there on out, which is a pain, but very manageable. It’s especially manageable with just how quickly you level up most of the time, with everyone getting a level every 3 or 4 battles in most cases, and every level up comes with a free full heal. Even save points give full heals too, meaning that grinding and combat are pretty easy after the first hour or so because magic is your main source of damage, and MP is a resource very easily acquired.

The position system? It’s ultimately pretty inconsequential beyond using one of your melee people to body block the enemy from getting too close to your back line, but even then, magic and guns (things many enemies have too) have no range limit, so it just makes sense to have everyone have good magic and physical defense all the time anyhow. The buffing spells are also very numerous, sure, but the game is ultimately just not balanced in a way that encourages you to use them at all. I finished the entire game never using them once, and I reckon you’d only really have to if you were trying to kill the optional super boss the hard way. Koudelka overall is just a quite easy RPG after the first hour or so (making it a little SMT-like, in that way), and so a lot of the systems that could be game breaking or experience ruining with their reliance on RNG or grinding are just actually not problems, at the end of the day.

Honestly, the biggest criticism I can give of Koudelka’s RPG systems are that they’re quite so easy that they feel a little boring at times, and loading times also take long enough (though far from the longest on the system) that grinding can take a while should you choose to do any. Well, all that as well as the final boss itself being quite a step up in challenge from most other fights in the game (in another very SMT-like move), so it may be worth looking up how to snag secret weapons like the Gargoyle Killer like I did if you wanna make your time with it a bit easier x3

The aesthetics and presentation of the game are absolutely phenomenal, at least for the time. As mentioned earlier, the voice acting is all excellent as well as being all in English even in the Japanese version I played. I got one little bug with audio cutting out during one of them (sadly TwT), but that is thankfully something that does not appear to be present in the international releases at all. The music is very groovy and great too, and it really makes battles and exploration feel just as intense and fun as they should do. The visual design is also very good, with our main characters being very distinct and well designed (if a bit weirdly overly horny in the case of Koudelka herself ^^;), and the monster design is very diverse and delightfully creepy (as Shadow Hearts 1 would continue to be after it). There are many in-game cutscenes but also a handful of pre-rendered CGI cutscenes too, and I imagine those combined are the reason for why such a short game manages to take up four discs of space XD. Regardless of their data size, however, they still look very good, with the monsters that show up in them being particularly good looking and wonderfully uncanny in their designs.

Verdict: Highly Recommended. I do want to open this summary by saying that if you’re someone who really loves mechanically deep RPGs first and foremost and story is very secondary to you, you’ll probably have a rougher time with Koudelka than I did. That said, the mechanics themselves may be messy, but they still made a game that felt just challenging enough as I went through it to still be something I enjoyed doing. The writing is also something I cannot praise enough, which is something you’ve probably got a pretty good idea of if you’ve read this far XD. Koudelka may be an odd ball of a game, but it’s regardless an absolutely exceptional one. If you’re a fan of games with strong themes and good character writing, then Koudelka is absolutely not one to miss out on. It’s got a little bit of retro clunkiness to it here and there, but it is more than worth looking past to reach the rest of just how well put together this adventure is. As far as I’m concerned, Koudelka is easily one of the best RPGs, if not one of the best games full stop, on the PS1.
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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by MrPopo »

Previous Years: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022

First 50:

51. This Way Madness Lies - PC
52. Mechwarrior 5: Mercenaries: The Dragon's Gambit - PC
53. Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty - PC
54. Sprawl - PC
55. Zortch - PC
56. Ion Fury: Aftershock - PC
57. Spider-Man 2 - PS5
58. Alan Wake II - PC
59. Ghostrunner II - PC
60. RoboCop: Rogue City - PC

After all these years, we finally have a good RoboCop game. Rogue City is a release from a dev with a spotty track record, though apparently their recent Terminator game was well received. Well, this one continues the new tradition. Rogue City completely sells the RoboCop fantasy and is a celebration of 80s action movies.

The game is set after RoboCop 2 and prior to 3. Some late game dialog sets the stage for the events of RoboCop 3, so it's not an attempt to make that go away no matter how much we might want to. There's a new crimelord in town known as The New Guy, and it's up to RoboCop to clear the streets of Detroit of criminal scum. But things run deeper than they seem.

Obviously, the game is a first person shooter, but it doesn't play like any first person shooter you're used to. RoboCop is not an agile marine running behind cover and taking potshots at baddies. He is a walking tank, and the game controls appropriately. Your normal walking cadence is glacially slow, with heavy footsteps thundering in your hear. You can move into a light jog, which is approximately the normal walking speed in a standard FPS. So, since you can't dodge fire, what is your option? To quickly and efficiently take out baddies. RoboCop has plenty of health and armor, not to mention the ability to self-heal using a consumable. As a result, the game actually ends up playing more like a light gun game. It really sells that implacable man that we see in the movies.

It's not just all shooting dudes. RoboCop walks a beat and handles crime as he comes across it. Sometimes this involves full on sidequests, other times it's writing parking tickets and confronting petty lawbreakers. You have the option of strictly upholding the law or serving the public trust through softening your stance and giving them a chance to reform. You can also pick up contraband and keep it off the streets. All this fuels a minor skill system where you can do things like pump up your armor to the point that small caliber rounds ricochet off at enemies or gain the ability to see points in the environment that you can reflect shots at enemies behind cover. As the game goes on you also gain the ability to improve your Auto-9 pistol; while you can pick up a second gun from enemies, properly customized the Auto-9 is more than enough to keep the streets of Detroit clean.

The game is a greatest hits reel of RoboCop moments. If there's a quote you remember, it probably gets said. If there's a setpiece you remember, you probably see it again. This is a game of pure fanservice, but it's executed well. RoboCop in particular looks fantastic. While the rest of the game's graphics are pretty middling, they pulled out all the stops to get the title character looking good. Peter Weller returns to voice him.

If the idea of getting to play as one of cinema's greatest action heroes brings you joy, then congratulations, this is the game for you. When horns of the main theme start blaring while you shrug off shots and take out enemies you'll go back to your childhood games of pretend. This was clearly created by people who grew up loving the property and wanting to do it justice, and they succeed brilliantly.
Blizzard Entertainment Software Developer - All comments and views are my own and not representative of the company.
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