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Gaming / Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Last post by vladgd on February 20, 2024, 12:12:06 PM »
1. Metal Gear (MSX)



I BEAT A VIDYA IN 2024...finally.

Last november? Mario RPG, then december...season of discovery was cool then I remembered raiding is the reason mmo's are lame. Monster Hunter randomly got a surge of popularity due to sales + influencers so that was fun to get back into until Tekken 8 came out.

Work, tekken, reading, occasionally trying to get out, didn't have time/motivation to beat vidya.

Then I watched a random Aris (avoiding the puddle on youtube), video where he was playing the original MSX metal gear...and I Impulse bought the master collection for ps5 and...yeah.

I am (was) a HUGE metal gear fan, but kind of fell off after 4 and me skipping ps3 entirely. Played a little 5, enjoyed it, didn't beat it. But mgs 1/2 as me in high school, some of my favorite gaming experiences ever.

Anyway I knew metal gear with the NES version, which is a horrible game. It's like street fighter 1, it eventually turned into something truly great, but the start was...poor at best.

However, watching someone play the MSX game, it LOOKS similar...but it's a lot more polished. The NES game was a port done by different people, the MSX game is the original. Actually there's quite a few places in the game where if you play this, and mgs1, you can see that mgs1 is almost like a remake of this game, in 3d, except it's a canon sequel. Even the beginning of the msx game has snake infiltrating the base via coming underwater, just like in mgs1. The NES game throws you in the middle of some jungle that isn't even in the original game as a filler segment.

Almost zelda like in feel, with obvious metal gear trimmings. "open world" get items to get to places you couldn't get before, some mandatory back tracking, yadda yadda. Not a super long game, my ingame timer after credits said like 2h40m or something completion, but alltogether probably over 3...maybe 4 hours to beat. I did eventually use a guide, I recommend a guide, this is an old game and you CAN accidentally make the game unwinnable if you say kill a hostage without knowing any better or something.

Enjoyable playthrough, cool to beat the first in this franchise of which I forgotten I had been a huge fan of. Might give Metal Gear 2 a shot later, now THAT game I remember seeing and thinking (wow it looks like an 8 bit version of metal gear solid). But apparently when I think to zig, I ZAG this year so I got no idea where my impulses will take me next. There is a pretty obvious zig at the end of the month that I intend to indulge in though...

...but that'll be for then. Metal Gear, msx version, thumbs up.
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Gaming / Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Last post by vladgd on February 07, 2024, 09:25:04 PM »
The Dark Forest



I AM GOING TO PLAY VIDYA...I swear...Tekken 8 is pretty good but not really "beatable" in a sense of where I'd want it on my list.

This is one of them, show this to me 10 years ago and I'll say NOPE too big...but I got the trilogy and..the next one is 100 pages bigger than this one which was 200 pages more than the last one.

Three body problem is like the setup, the dark forest...yknow it's also kind of a setup...but it's got a LOT going on. Finally starts getting into "cool future sci-fi stuff", with a rollercoaster of ups and downs.

Hard to talk about books without spoiling them outright, but the ending of this one really just makes me want to jump into the last one. I do need a break, spent nearly 12+ hours of my weekend reading. Novelty of actually enjoying the act of reading not worn off yet, it really is like engaging with a movie or tv show, except I have minimal interest in either of those two mediums anymore. Good way to fill that gap.

Again to stick with the "this is still novel to me" as I keep saying. There's a whole, as to not directly spoil what it is, james bond/mission impossible ass scene that I didn't even need audio or visual aids to enjoy and have a clear concise picture of what's going on. I've been missing out.

This is pretty cool stuff, always was a sucker for sci-fi but it's reach in tv and videogames is limited. But there's a whole ass expanse of it in the literary space.
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Gaming / Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Last post by vladgd on January 29, 2024, 05:44:59 PM »
The Three-Body Problem



"buy another random sci fi trilogy of books"

Uhh...this is that. Actually finished this last week on the 24th. Was half way through and couldn't stop till I finished, but haven't had time since then to log my thoughts.

This whole book thing, it's different.

Not to spoil anything so a few thoughts. Starts off in 1960's china, cultural revolution, part of history I am not at all familiar with. Chinese author, chinese point of view, it's different. Takes a while to get going, doesn't start off feeling like science fiction. When it gets there...it do get there, and I only hear it gets more crazy in the next two books.

I have no real perspective when it comes to literature, as to what's good or bad, what's interesting or generic, so...all I can say is once it got going, I had a hard time putting it down. Interesting stuff and I do look forward to the next one, which will come as I have time.

Still "novel" to me, no pun intended...but actually sitting down to enjoy one of these things is like ingesting a season of tv or something. I don't really into tv or movies anymore, so these could fit that niche. We'll see if I keep up with it or end up dropping it, but for now there's enough interesting things I want to get to that'll keep me busy a while.
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Gaming / 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Last post by vladgd on January 18, 2024, 12:12:03 AM »
Ham on Rye



New year new GAME...what no...this isn't a game.

I read stuff, I have "books" but mostly gaming books or artbooks or tabletop rpgs or whatever. To connect the dots here...cyberpunk 2077 > cyberpunk 2020 > thinking about bladerunner > buying a copy of neuromancer because I hear it inspired bladerunner > aquire several other books including this one because "I'll get to em eventually" > year later no books read see dune spice wars is on sale > impulse buy game > interested in dune and impulse buy it at barnes and noble > buy another random sci fi trilogy of books > don't read any of them and finish this book in a week.

My brain goes places, but maybe now I can finish a book every now and then.

Quite depressing read, very vulgar, disturbing in places, humor in others. Can't recommend to an adolescent, but I think I will seek out "post office" which takes place after this one. It's got an interesting perspective and uses words you don't often hear by civilized decent people. Stupid to admit this but this is the first novel I have read in my life, on my own, for entertainment. Better late than never? 

Of all things, a book about growing up in the great depression from childhood to early adulthood? I literally seen what a miserable human being Bukowski was on youtube, seeked out one of his books, and now I know the man was god damned miserable. I'm used to the whole "protagonist, antagonist, beginning middle and end" and this 280 page book is 58 very short chapters of events that are just there. Then it ends and kind of just...ends. No big sendoff, no happy ending, just...done. Fitting, really.

Games to come later, currently casually playing various monster hunter games.
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Random Chat / Re: Respond if you're still active here!
« Last post by vladgd on December 27, 2023, 11:43:05 PM »
Outside of me posting in my little corner for...me...pretty inactive for the most part. Greatful for speccy keeping the lights on at least.

Kind of wish forums didn't go away in favor for modern social media, but that's how it be.
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Gaming / Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Last post by vladgd on December 21, 2023, 11:21:15 PM »
I know we got over a week left in the year...but...me beating something new before Jan 1? Ain't happening, I got time now...so...I'm just gonna end this thread.

Now now what is the damage this year, the year of our lord 2023.

1. Frog Detective 1: The Haunted Island
2. Dragon Quest Treasures
3. Metroid II: Return of Samus
4. Metroid Fusion
5. Armored Core
6. Armored Core: Project Phantasma
7. Armored Core: Master of Arena
8. The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom
9. Street Fighter 6 (World Tour mode)
10. Pikmin 2
11. Pikmin 3 Deluxe
12. Pikmin 4
13. Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon
14. Super Mario Bros. Wonder
15. Super Mario RPG (remake)

Things not unique/completed that I did play to not make the list proper

Metroid Prime
Super Metroid
Caves of Qud
No Man's Sky
Wario Ware
Advance Wars
Trials of Mana
Baldurs Gate 3
F-Zero 99
Pikmin
Into the Breach
WoW Season of Discovery

I think that this is just how I play games now a days. I like to beat stuff, and I don't really need to force it anymore, nor have I for...probably years now. I didn't force the 10 this year, I coulda probably finished baldurs gate...but...that game has been getting some major patches, maybe one or two more and I'll polish it off...in 2024.

Steam year in review is a new thing they have done starting...last year. It's pretty cool (click for link). Doesn't show everything because I play a lot of...not...steam...but it still lets me track things pretty easy in my life and stuff. Jan I got sick sick, didn't play anything beatable really.


Feb I got started playing stuff, dragon quest, then the beginning of my 2+ month metroid binge...then uhh ice storm..."hey I'm not coming home because of the weather...do you want to come to the hotel"...



...so I almost got stuck...but...that lead to many many...many many many great times over the course of the year, into me moving out...again...almost got stuck in a foot of snow but WORTH IT.

INTO YADDA YADDA, years go by fast but when reflecting upon the year, it's crazy to see how long ago last January really was. Life has its ups and downs, this year had a bunch of those...ending on the past few months being pretty alright.

To wrap this up with my normal bs I talk about.

Most rewarding game to complete
This one on paper is metroid dread, dread mode. In practice...armored core? Metroid 2? Pikmin 2? I just can't pick one, dread mode is obviously the hardest...but...armored core, metroid 2, and pikmin 2 have all been on the "to do" list for over a decade, and I have failed to beat them on multiple occasions. so...yeah, all of those games, very nice to finally have completed.

Biggest Surprise
I'm going to go left with this one and say...
F-Zero 99

I did not play a ton ton of this, but roughly 10-15 hours...for a few weeks I had a hard time putting this sucker down. Came out of nowhere, every time i'd pick it up I would play an hour more than I anticipated. A very welcome surprise from Nintendo.

Least Favorite Game

I was about to say I don't have one...then I remembered...

Metroid Fusion

Ain't gonna sugar coat it, I DISPISE this game. I don't like it, I'd almost say I hate it...glad I never have to play it again.

Runner up Favorite

This year is hard. I can't put metroid dread in here because it's not on "the list" so it does not "count".

Armored Core 6

Not much I can add that I haven't said already but ARMORED CORE IS BACK, AND ITS REALLY FUCKIN GOOD. Had a hard time peeling myself away from the game, even after I completed it 3 times. It WAS gonna be my goty...not an easy choice for me to make...but...

Special Mention

Stuff not on the list section. Metroid is an amazing franchise, as lukewarm as I typically am on Prime, I couldn't pull myself away from the game until I was seeing credits.

Pikmin 1 was a blast to play through a second time, and dominated my old time I did.

No Man's Sky continues to draw me in with its infinite (maybe finite with their new game on the horizon) updates, always something to do, something to acheive.

Street Fighter 6 was on the list, but after I did the single player stuff, I put a good ~65 hours into ranked/casual matches online. Netcode while still not perfect was lightyears ahead of 5. I really do need to pick the game back up but it's hard to find the time to achieve mastery in a game when so many gems keep being released on a constant basis now a days. Haven't really touched it since June, but at no fault of it's own.

Advance Wars I almost forgot about, the way they advertise/talk about the game is like they don't want people to buy it. Still as a fan of the series, it's great. Biggest dark spot is the afterthought that is the online functionality. Aside from that, it's a pretty big recommend from me.

Favorite Game/GOTY 2023

Pikmin 4

With how many BANGERS to come out this year, it was really hard picking between pikmin and amored core...but to no fault of fromsoft, Pikmin 4 is another level.

It's hard to describe, in 2023, a BIG, COMPLETE, essentially BUG FREE, FULLY FEATURED WITH EXTRA CONTENT AND EVEN MORE EXTRA VARIED CONTENT. It's not the cute little short compact experience that Pikmin 1 is, it's a large ass complete ass feature packed game. You "beat" the game...but then play this entirely different mode with Olimar...after which...you find out there's another ~50% more game to go, that's all optional. There's so much to do, and most of it is just great. It's a shame people are giving games like Starfield and Diablo 4 more attention because this game is fantastic. I'm not even a huge Pikmin fantatic, but I knew that this game was special when I was playing it, and months later I still feel that it is my GOTY 2023.

1- earthbound
2- monster hunter world
3- smt nocturne
4- smt 4
5- south park fractured but whole
6- xcom terror from the deep
7- persona 5
8- deus ex mankind divided
9- metroid: samus returns
10- dragon quest xi
11- smt 4 apocalypse
12- advance wars 2
13- disgaea 5
14. Front Mission 4
15. Paper Mario TTYD
16. Luigis Mansion
17. Zelda Wind Waker
18. Rebel Galaxy
19. Persona Q
20. Eternal Darkness
21. Dragon Quest
22. Strange Journey Redux
23. Shining Force Sword of Hajya
24. Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night
25. Doom (2016)
26. Metroid Prime
27. Plants vs Zombies
28. Disgaea 1 Complete
29. Links Awakening Remake
30. Pokemon Shield
31. Dragon Quest 2
32. Dragon Quest Builders 2
33. SteamWorld Dig
34. Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga
35. Advance Wars Days of Ruin
36. XCOM Chimera Squad
37. Fallout New Vegas
38. Phantasy Star (Sega Ages)
39. Advance Wars Dual Strike
40. Cyberpunk 2077
41. The Outer Worlds
42. Dragon Quest VI
43. Doom Eternal
44. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
45. Monster Hunter Rise
46. Death Stranding
47. Captain Toad Treasure Tracker
48. Metroid Dread
49. Castlevania Harmony of Dissonance
50. Castlevania Aria of Sorrow
51. Zelda Breath of the Wild
52. 10000000
53. You Must Build A Boat
54. Shin Megami Tensei V
55. Into the Breach
56. The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
57. Pokémon Legends: Arceus
58. Bayonetta 2
59. Trials of Mana
60. Gran Turismo 7
61. Star Wars Episode I: Racer
62. Astro's Playroom
63. Final Fantasy VII Remake
64. Shantae
65. Shantae: Risky's Revenge
66. Shantae and the Pirates Curse
67. Shantae Half Genie Hero
68. Shantae and the Seven Sirens
69. Soul Hackers 2
70. Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga 2
71. We <3 Katamari
72. Merchant of the Skies
73. The DioField Chronicle
74. Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition
75. XCOM 2: War of the Chosen
76. Pokemon Scarlet
77. Front Mission 1st
78. CRISIS CORE –FINAL FANTASY VII– REUNION
79. Frog Detective 1: The Haunted Island
80. Dragon Quest Treasures
81. Metroid II: Return of Samus
82. Metroid Fusion
83. Armored Core
84. Armored Core: Project Phantasma
85. Armored Core: Master of Arena
86. The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom
87. Street Fighter 6 (World Tour mode)
88. Pikmin 2
89. Pikmin 3 Deluxe
90. Pikmin 4
91. Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon
92. Super Mario Bros. Wonder
93. Super Mario RPG (remake)

7 games away from 100, since I started this stupid idea years ago when I moved into my first house in another life. This is just how it is now. I have been considering getting my own blog somewhere else on the internet to have a...I'd like a place of my own to just throw my thoughts into the ether, mostly for me. I do this for me, it helps me remember things as dumb as it sounds. I know where I was in life when I was playing captain toad treasure tracker...my then ex, current gf was taking classes to do a job, I bought an electric skillet. I remember when I was playing Strange Journey that my last ex came back from a flight and we had some...difficult conversations that eventually lead in our 5 year relationship ending a year later. It's dumb, but it's kind of like landmarks for my mind to remember where I am at in certain places, and since I don't do social media or post my own thoughts really anywhere else, this is what I got, this is what I do.

Next year, coming up soon. No idea what it'll bring, things as of now are...kinda good, new place, not single anymore, can't complain about too much.

NEW THREAD, NEW YEAR, I'LL BE HERE.

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Random Chat / Respond if you're still active here!
« Last post by NewF on December 16, 2023, 08:42:27 AM »
I've been checking the forum out randomly for the last year or so, but haven't seen much activity lately. Wanting to see our current userbase and continue to converse and update each other on our regular lives!
Hope you're all doing well and am looking forward to hearing about everyone's lives and how things are going.

And yes. I'm still using the same avatar and sig since what, 2004? Sue me or fight me. I welcome both. Hahaha. :)
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Gaming / Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Last post by vladgd on November 21, 2023, 04:15:30 PM »
15. Super Mario RPG (remake)



Had to put the (remake) in there because this game actually is just called "Super Mario RPG" instead of the original "Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars", actually didn't hit me till after I beat the game that this remake doesn't even have "remake/remaster" in the title. But being as the games name is "TECHNICALLY" different...I'll let it slide.

TL;DR, this is what I wanted the final fantasy 7 remake to be, a remaster in essence. This game is more or less the original game, new shiny graphics, a new ost (which I didn't hate...didn't prefer over the original, which is thankfully available in the options), minor QoL updates, and a little bit of postgame that wasn't in the original.

That said...it's good...if you liked the original...this is that...

I had a good time, ~13/14 hours, nothing super long. Not much else to say, it's mario rpg but "new", and that's a thing that appeals to me. I don't remember being able to swap party members mid fight, so that "may" be new. Pretty useful, made all of the characters useful at any given time, nice touch assuming it wasn't in the snes game.

Short post this game, it's a remaster of an already great game...worst thing I have to say about it is the framerate drops in certain spots...pretty few and far between but it is noticeable when it happens.

Till next time.
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Gaming / Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Last post by vladgd on October 25, 2023, 06:39:57 PM »
14. Super Mario Bros. Wonder



I had a mild interest in playing this. Been dealing with some pretty severe oral pain, probably an infection, either way needing something to take my mind off the pain. Watched about 3 minutes of this game on youtube before thinking, screw it, I'll just buy it.

I didn't keep track, nor does the game, but I'd reckon 7-9 hours of playtime later I am at the credits, and I am quite satisfied with my purchase. Not that long, but when are 2d mario games long? Still plenty to do, plenty of reason to go back to levels to get all the things, other levels I haven't unlocked, secrets, yadda yadda.

I had been away from mario games proper since sunshine. Maybe you'd count 3d world on the 3ds, which was a solid game...but it wasn't that memorable. I avoided the wii/wii u eras for nintendo so if they didn't port it to switch, I probably didn't play it. The "new" smb series I "Should" have went out of my way to play, I never did, plus the "Wa Wa!" sounds of that generation annoyed me to an unreasonable degree.

But this game doe...honestly it doesn't really have anything to hide. It's just a mario ass mario game, polished to the gills quality, plenty of charm, and I really couldn't peel myself away from it until I felt compelled to log my thoughts about it on the internet.

I didn't know I, in the year of my lord 2023, would actually enjoy a regular ass, albeit top quality platformer, but here I am. Not a whole lot to say outside of that, the visuals are amazing, the acid trip wonder flowers are always welcome and add something new to a level, music while not "fantastic" is still quite good and fits in with the visuals...especially when they mix gameplay with the stage music...

The online is actually kinda neat, other players are ghosts that can't mess with your game, but they can revive you or vice versa if you die, and you can plant down standees that can be used to revive off of. Also since standees can only be planted on a solid surface, excuse the "dark souls" reference, but a random standee in the air may mean "yo there's a hidden block here", and some of the emotes players leave from the standees can give you a hint with the right context. Mostly it's just novel seeing other players playing the game at the same time as you, it's optional and opt in, doesn't get in the way, all good.

Probably last thing I'll end on since I am a sucker for a good world map...these maps are something. They do the oldschool mario 3 styled linear go to point, play level, go to point, but those are linked to open areas you can run and jump in that contain a majority of a worlds levels. It's got secrets, regular levels, and a surprising variety of smaller levels that have you doing things such as defeating x enemies in a time limit, to a race vs wiggler, to levels with mostly hidden blocks in it that are really fun with the online turned on to figure out how to complete, to easy 30 second "break time" "levels" that mostly offer a quick novel experience. They also do a great job of making them feel..."vertical", at least in a few of the worlds you either go up up up, or down down down, and it's just visually impressive.

Probably end it there. Nintendo made a mario game, and it's really good, who'da thunk. Almost like they make good games or something, anyway...now that I seen credits, I kinda wanna jump back in and play a bit more.

*edit*

I actually 100% this game a few days ago. A few thoughts.

I played through the game to completion, aka credits, with Toadette, a normal character. In the interest in saving time so I can jump to the next whatever I'm playing, I used Yoshi/Nabbit to get all of the remaining uncollected items/flagpoles. Yoshi/Nabbit in this game get no access to upgrades like fire flower or the elephant, however...they just take no damage. Yoshi can still eat people like in older games, takes hitstun when hit, but can't die from damage. Nabbit has no attack outside of jump, but doesn't even take hitstun and can just run through damage.

That said, essentially "cheating" but they're in the game as fast as being able to select them at any time including before you start the first level...so...however good you feel about using em is up to you. I got credits with a normal character, and used an easy character to polish off the 100%, still had a good time.

The "Final, FINAL" level though...what a doozey. The whole game as is, while it does certainly have outlier challenging levels, as a whole...pretty tame. The final final level, the one you unlock when you beat everything, and get everything, and do everything...borderline kaizo. When games journalists say "I can't be asked to spend 3 hours on a boss fight" and I think, no matter how hard a boss is...I literally can't fathom spending 3 hours of attempts on a boss in any game I played that I can think of. This level took me at least 2 hours and 70+ deaths to complete. I am extremely rusty at platformers and it showed with this level. They even end with a final fuck you with precision platforming on moving bouncing objects...while completely invisible unable to see your character, and death means doing the previous 3 challenges in a row...GLAD I DON'T GOTTA DO THAT AGAIN.

That said, game was fun enough to warrant me not being done after seeing credits. This game ain't beating Super Mario World, but frankly not even most truly great videogames can beat that game, still gotta give em props for making a damn fun Mario game.
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Gaming / Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Last post by vladgd on October 24, 2023, 04:26:04 PM »
Trials of Mana

...for roughly the 11th or 12th time, I have lost count.



Getting burned out from a constant barrage of straight bangers from may into september, plus moving to a new place, needed a break.

I have this game on switch which I fully completed, I got all achievements on pc...so seeing the ps4 version for $19 on amazon...I mean...it is an easy platinum, so I did that.

Not much to say that I haven't said already, but this is one of those underlooked gems I can't recommend enough.

One thing to add, the structure of the game do remind me a bit of dragon quest 11. Both games are completely different, but the arc of the game after you get going "get all the mcguffins to win the game!" then you do that...only for you to only be 1/3 through the game! bum bum bummmmm, then the true evil shows itself for the next arc and you do all the things and beat the true evil and you win!...and you really do win, credits and everything, but...if you want to "really" win...there's another "optional" arc you can do to beat up the secret true villain.

Not sure if I'm grasping for straws here, but the overall structure feels similar to me anyway.
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