Games Beaten 2023

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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by REPO Man »

If you liked Ys 1&2 there's a fan translation with a fan-made English dub of Ys IV for PC Engine CD.
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by Note »

marurun wrote:I consider that a huge achievement. That's one hard map to "perfect". The thieving maps are also hard, what with split parties. Shining Force III didn't go easy on players in some ways, that's for sure.

Totally agree with you on the difficulty, it's quite a challenging game. I found it (at least Scenario 1) to be more difficult than Shining Force II for sure. I completed all the Ruins maps too. With some of the later ones being pretty difficult, they took me a few attempts and I had to reference a guide for one as well.
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by Jagosaurus »

Ended up beating a couple more late in December:

1. Sonic Adventure (DX HD)
2. Goldeneye 007 (Remaster)
3. Panzer Dragoon (Remake)
4. Halo 5 (Heoric & Skulls Replay)
5. Policenauts (PS1 English Translation)
6. Aaero
7. Gears of War Ultimate Edition
8. Gears of War 2
9. Gears of War 3
10. Doom 3 BFG Edition
11. Halo 2 (Heoric & Skulls Replay)
12. TMNTs Shredder's Revenge
13. Sonic & All Star Racing Transformed
14. NiGHTS Into Dreams (HD)

Other notable played considerably in 2023 - Minecraft, Roblox, Splitgate ... and currently ~20 hours into the beast of Dragon Quest XI

I really enjoyed Sonic & All Star Racing Transformed. I watched the credit roll, but unfortunately getting 160 stars to unlock SEGA AGES is a real grind and I likely won't put in the many hours required. This one makes me want to play Sonic Team Racing now.

I had NiGHTS and the 3D controller on the Saturn for years. I finally beat the HD version on Xbox platform. Overall, this is a very fun and unique experience. Had it complimented a 3D Sonic game on the Saturn, vs "replacing" it ... we would likely view it much differently today.

My Retro Achievements | Games Beaten 2023 & 2024 |
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by marurun »

Maru's 2023 Games Beaten
As always, short and sweet! (The list, not the write-ups. God no, not the write-ups.)

  1. Vampire Survivors (iPhone)
  2. The Warlock of Firetop Mountain (Switch)
  3. Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth (Switch)
  4. The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom (Switch)

Tears of the Kingdom (Switch)
I started playing this game in... April of 2023, I think. I didn't finally beat it until late December, 2023, after Christmas. I put over 300 hours into the game during that period and drove my son a little batty that I wasn't playing anything else. Truthfully, though, he played a lot more games than I did during that time period and spent a lot more time playing overall, so he can just deal with it.

I guess the short version is what everyone else has been saying, that this is Breath of the Wild but MOAR! The long version is a bit more complicated, but I'll try to keep it from getting out of control. Tears of the Kingdom (TotK) is really the immediate sequel to Breath of the Wild (BotW) and it does a lot to address some of the mechanical concerns of Breath of the Wild in addition to granting a ton of completely new abilities. It really feels like Nintendo used the same engine but massively enhanced. The game mostly falls down in relation to its sequel-ness, but I'll get into that later.

In TotK it's been something like 5 years since Calamity Ganon was defeated. With the rapid crumbling of Hyrule Castle, Zelda and Link have discovered caverns below with murals about the mysterious Zonai people who apparently predate even the Ancient technology, which is now suspiciously almost completely gone from the world, dating back to the very founding of Hyrule itself. There's also some weird Gloom that seems to emanate from below They discover a mummified corpse held in place by a severed arm, but their presence causes the corpse to revive. The Master Sword breaks and crumbles before the reawakened being's power, Zelda falls into a crumbling pit, and Link passes out after trying to leap after her. When he awakens he discovers his right arm has been replaced with the one which was previously restraining who we will quickly learn is Ganondorf. Link discovers sky islands, base jumping, and a bevy of powers I just described in detail and then decided to erase because nobody is going to read all that. Summary FTW!

BotW featured complex combat with parrying and dodging, lots of traversal with climbing and gliding, tons of things to collect in the world for cooking, and complex physics and powers for puzzles. TotK also has these things, but it really doubles down on them. The combat is back, but the beam-shooting Ancient Guardians are not. However, enemies hit like trucks, so the challenge is no longer how to deflect that one beam that will explode you and juggle you but how to use all your abilities to survive until you have sufficiently enhanced your armor and expanded your heart count. The climbing is back, but is aided by Ascend, allowing for more ways to Go Up. Gliding is back, though you may not actually get the glider until later in the game, depending on how much you wander without following quest chains. But there are sky islands, yo! How will you get up into the sky without Revali's Gale? There are now Zonai devices, which introduce all sorts of elemental and mechanical functions which, when manipulated with the Ultrahand power, can be combined to create all sorts of crazy nonsense. Yes, Zelda is now a crafting game. And because the physics engine has been enhanced, the nonsense is pretty open-ended. All those things you used to collect for cooking and potions you can now also attach to weapons to improve their durability and strength, or to arrows to make up for and even exceed the missing specialty arrows.

So outside of crazy crafting what does TotK improve on over BotW? Better traversal. There are just so many ways to get around. Weapon durability is also mitigated somewhat. Ganondorf's Gloom has made base weapons degrade more quickly, but many fusion items enhance weapon power and extend their durability quite a bit. The map itself is the same size, right? Except while a lot of it is the same, lots of it is also very different, and there's sky islands and the Depths, so there's actually quite a lot more total world to explore. Oh, and there's also caves and caverns. The world is now almost like Swiss cheese in places. Moving away from the WiiU has resulted generally in improved visuals, performance, and world complexity. Finally, there's the shrines and dungeons (Temples). The TotK temples feel more manageable to me than the BotW ones. There were a few shrines in BotW which felt more difficult and finicky than they needed to be. The TotK ones feel more even in that regard. And while BotW's Divine Beasts were their dungeons, TotK's shrines feel a lot better and more interested in comparison. True dungeon afficionados will probably not be fully satisfied, but I think this is an excellent compromise and opens the door for Zelda's future to have more freedom in how to balance things.

The biggest complaint against TotK is related to the story. In some ways the story is better than BotW. BotW was so open ended it almost felt like the story didn't matter at all. Calamity Ganon was just this faceless baddie. Ganondorf is... Slightly less faceless? He has a personality, even if TotK doesn't really discuss his motivations or character that much. Zelda gets a lot more story time and, between her story bits and environmental storytelling, the relationship between her and Link is fleshed out a bit more. The story complaints are that all the Ancient tech is just... gone. And there's almost no link established between Calamity Ganon and Ganondorf. So there's all this worldbuilding, but it seems to almost supplant the old worldbuilding instead of further developing it. Though it's annoying, comments from the developers made it clear that while story is important to their games, they are more interested in internal consistency within each game and not between games, despite TotK being a direct sequel.

I loved this game. Despite my story/world complaints it was massively fun and dominated my limited gaming time for 3/4 of the year. I highly recommend this game to anyone who enjoyed BotW, and also to people who wanted to like BotW but bounced off of some of the shrines or the Guardian beams. That said, if the entire BotW approach left you cold, TotK is unlikely to truly fix that for you. I think it's possible the changes made could change your mind, but it's far from guaranteed. Even though the game is, in some ways, quite a different experience, it's also a very similar experience in many other ways.
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by Note »

Awesome review of ToTK, Maru! Great to read your thoughts on it. My partner also spent much of her gaming time in 2023 dedicated to Tears of the Kingdom, and it's become one of her favorite games of all time.
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Re: Games Beaten 2023

Post by SyedDanishAnwar »

In 2023, I played and completed the following games.

PS3 Console
Unchartered 2 - Completed. *22 Jan. 2023
Unchartered 1 - Completed. *Mar. 2023
Unchartered 3 - Completed. *Apr. 2023
Red Dead Redemption - Completed. *Nov. 2023

Uncharted Legacy Collection - Completed. *July 2023
Astro's Playroom - *Aug. 2023 Completed
Spiderman 2 - *Nov. 2023
Final Fantasy VII Intergrade - *Dec. 2023

WiiU/Switch PC Emulators (Cemu and Yuzu)
Super Mario 3D - *Sep. 2023 Completed
Super Mario Oddysey - *Dec. 2023 Completed

Final Fantasy XIII Completed. - *22 Jan. 2023 Completed
Final Fantasy VIII Remastered - *Aug. 2023 Completed
Grim Fandango Remastered - *Aug. 2023 Completed

Uncharted is without doubt one of the best series ever made. I was really impressed by the visual details of the 4th game. The character details of this game was super impressive.
Naughty Dog has set a high bar when it comes to graphics.

I played Super Mario 3D and Odyssey with my 3 year old kid. Although it is a childish game, my son insisted I play with him. He was elated when we defeated browser and saved the fairies and Princess Peach in the two games. I have to say I was really impressed with the two Mario games, esp. Oddysey was dope.

I was surprisingly delighted with Astro's Playroom on PS5. The game uses a lot of innovative features like motion control, touch pad on controller, and more that created a positive experience. Also, I loved the nostalgia elements in the game.

Grim Fandango was one of my favorite game in my teens. I wanted to revisit the land of the dead in HD, and enjoyed the journey with the remaster from the start till the end - We need more games like this.

I loved Red Dead Redemption and Spiderman 2. These two games are my all time favorites due to stellar gameplay and emotional storyline.

Lastly, Final Fantasy games are one of my favorite PS exclusives games, and I enjoyed Final Fantasy VII Remake to my heart's content. I am eagerly awaiting the next chapter of the game with the release of FFVII Rebirth in Feb. 2024. Pity, the latest two versions of the main entries (XV and XVI) are not as good as they have deviated from the team based combat and RPG roots.
A legacy gamer from Karachi, Pakistan gaming since 1989 on both PC and consoles (Atari 2600, Famicon, Sega, PS 1-3 and 5). PSN ID: syeddanishanwar. Playing Now: PC: Prince of Persia The Lost Crown; Baldur's Gate 3, Elden Ring; PS5: Batman Arkham Knight, Final Fantasy VII Rebirth, Tekken 8; PS3: SPEC OPS: The Line.
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