Author Topic: 2023 Still Back Loggin'  (Read 2956 times)

vladgd

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #15 on: May 10, 2023, 05:53:07 PM »
7. Armored Core: Master of Arena



So...well, these games aren't horribly long aren't they? So uhh, that's it. Third and final Armored Core ps1 release.

I beat the first AC game with around ~13 hours played. Phantasma I didn't 100% but I did all the arena and all but 3 missions in ~5 hours. This game was about 4 hours...but I left most of the disc 2 content on the table. Might go back to do that stuff in the future? But that may be in the farther future because hot games are bout to drop soon.

Despite the short playtime there's 3-4 more missions, and an entire disc 2 with more arena stuff. The arena stuff in disc 2 has you making specific mech types (normal, reverse joint, tank, quad, blablabla) which is cool to keep you from making one god build like I did and recking most of the game.

This game has a different story covering the final boss of the first game, so I think it's a prequel? While project phantasma had the arena as 100% optional, this game has it as a mandatory part of the game. You do missions, then they make you do a little arena, then force you out of the arena to do mandatory mission, then no missions available, till the final mission. Beat final mission, any missions you didn't do are available to 100% at your own time.

I started off Project Phantasma not liking it so much, but after a little while I did end up enjoying it. This game is basically that game, but starts off non linear for the first half, and is extremely linear in the second half. I think I liked this release the least of the 3 personally, the final boss was also...really dumb. Due to the aforementioned VERY POOR controls the final boss is a 1v1 arena style fight which is fine but he's very fast, and uhh I am very slow because I wanted all the big guns. Took me 3 attempts because once he gets up on me, he kills me before I can even turn to face him the turning is so slow in this game. Thankfully the arena is huge and thus the third time I thought to just...boost backwards and unload on him, that one took about 6-7 seconds for me to finally see the credits. Harder final boss than the first game, but less frustrating level? Last level of AC1 has some very very bad platforming, FOLLOWED by two bosses that are in a hard to aim arena...different levels of pain I suppose.

So that's all 3 AC games on the ps1. I more or less went for the path of least resistance when it came to my build. Low mobility, high firepower and stuck with it. Curious if I will play this way in the other games when I get to it. The important part is that I had more fun than I remember having the last time I attempted this series, mission accomplished.

vladgd

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #16 on: May 28, 2023, 08:47:28 PM »
8. The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom



O boy, this is a big one. Where to start?

This game should be called "breath of the wild 2" for how similar in structure it is to the previous game. It IS a direct sequel and...does the exact same thing the last one did, albeit, better....in most areas.

First and foremost if you didn't like botw, don't play this game. Whatever was broke in that game like how hard it is to get money, or weapon durability, ain't fucking fixed in this game. Arrows do come by easier however, which is notable.

Similarities. The whole tutorial island thing is the exact same 4 shrines to get your powers in each one, a cold area you need to cook for warm for. You do a main quest in the 4 different race areas for their respective dungeon/power. Each dungeon is structured the exact same "you must get 4 things to fight the boss, then we'll tell you the story of the imprisoning war, and then give you a heart piece and a ring" FORUMLA TO THE T. You fight gannon he has 4 little bosses from the dungeons, if you didn't do those you gotta fight em, if you did, you get a cutscene and can get to the boss. You fight the gannon, after beating him, big setpiece "boss" fight you can't die in.

Koroks? 900 of them in the last game, ONE THOUSAND in this game. I got like 43, fuuuuuuuuuk that.

Shrines? 120something in the last game? ONE FIFTY TWO in this game. I did get like 114, they are too many but they're done better in this game. The ones I liked and disliked the most are the ones that took all your gear and made you kill all the enemies with just the stuff around the shrine, took more effort, but ended up being more fun.

Armor sets most of them are the same as the last game, you end up wanting the barbarian armor like the last game...woulda been cool if you used something else.

Powers? Well this is the main appeal of this game imo, they are actually good. Didn't think I'd like the build a vehicle thing, and it is a bit fiddley, but the powers have good synergy. Overall probably the best part of this game, you actually actively use your new powers and the game expects you to do so. Best thing you can build is 2 fans and a control stick to make what is basically a helicoptor, long as you have the battery, you can get ANYWHERE, and it's really convenient.

The game trailers showed off a bunch of sky islands, this game is already huge, and there's an entire sky layer. Not a "ton" of stuff up there, but more than enough to be it's own map layer. Takes good advantage of your new tools to navigate the skies.

...also not so shown in the trailers is the depths. Which I would compare to blackreach in skyrim, if blackreach was...1:1 the size...of..skyrim...yeah...an entire underground map AS BIG AS THE ALREADY TOO BIG HYRULE MAP...no light, enemies permanently sap your hearts until you get sunlight or eat for recovery (in which you still need to eat to heal proper). It's a cool addition and way too much for me to explore fully.

...and i could go on and on and on...and on, I need to stop eventually. Last thing of importance, I totally exploited item duplication a lot. It make my experience so much better I took my switch offline (because I know they're gonna patch it, and they DID patch it several days ago) to keep my exploits until I was finished. Not needing to worry about my high tier lionel parts made me actually engage in combat instead of run away, having money made me actually buy things instead of forget shops existed. Any edge to get me to chew through this game before street fighter 6 launch (June 2) because this game is just way too goddamn big. I have no idea how it's only 16 gigs, and I have no idea how the nintendo switch can run this thing.

This game is not a 10/10, it's not goty, it doesn't improve on big issues I had with botw...but it's still really fun, the new powers are actually great, and I DID have a meaningfully better time with this game over botw.

I also hope to never play it again, I think I had my fill and it is time to move on. Fingers crossed Nintendo can bring back some of the old zelda magic next rodeo. Gonna end this one before I turn it into a novel. Till next time!
 

vladgd

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #17 on: June 06, 2023, 09:04:51 PM »
9. Street Fighter 6 (World Tour mode)



So...unexpected. First time I seen this third person adventure mode thing I went from "the hell is that" to "might be cool" to...couldn't stop playing it when I got my hands on it.

24 hours played to see credits.

This is probably the only fighting game with a good single player mode. Mortal Kombat has been the leader in single player content, but for a proper story mode it's "just get the fight over with so I can watch another neat cutscene". This game has a few cutscenes, characters, a story arc, and it VAGUELY (and I am grasping straws here) kinda does what starcraft did. You have this competitive multiplayer game, and then you change some things up for the single player.

You have your create a character, and you can learn from various "masters" which are the main roster of the game for their moveset. Ontop of that you get to pick and choose which special moves you want to use. You want ryus normals but deejays fireball? You want ryus fireball AND deejays fireball with chun-li's normals? Go ahead! There's leveling, gear, and a skill tree that looks like a tournament bracket which I find cute. You got side missions, multiple areas to run around in, minigames, shops, some areas you could vaguely call "dungeons" albeit small. This is a full fledged rpg with the combat of street fighter 6, and it kinda works.

Before I played this game, people saying "this mode is worth the price of the game alone" I was highly skeptical. However...being as I put 24 hours into the game to "complete" it...yeah that holds up. This mode can't compete with your highly polished rpg games, but the fact that it's as good as it is, with how damn good the core online experience of street fighter 6 is with what I have played, it's nothing short of amazing for the fighting game genre.

As for the online, this mode has been taking up all my online time. I only got ~60 matches in so far, and while you can get some poor connections, I may have had 1? Very good early impressions.

Street Fighter 5 killed my interest for the fighting game genre, guilty gear strive started to reel me in a little bit, dnf duel gave me a few weeks of fun, but this game I think will actually bring me back. Less than a year after sf5 released, I have been waiting for them to pull the plug and make 6 already and it's nice to finally be here, and the game is GOOD!

vladgd

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #18 on: June 28, 2023, 09:18:21 PM »
10. Pikmin 2



So FINAL FANTASY 16 err...Pikmin 2? With Pikmin 4 coming up and 1 and 2 not being on the switch yet, Nintendo decided to fix that. $40 for both games, not a bad deal imo. Also appreciate this whole Nintendo direct "Here's this game, you can buy it...either right now or within the next 30 minutes, have fun" thing they've done the past few.

So the game. BLAST FROM THE PAST Pikmin 2 comes out on the gamecube and young me gets it! THEN I PROCEED TO...not play it because I wanted to finish the first game. I finish the first game, enjoyed it, play the second one till...a point where I got frustrated or something then stopped for about 10 years. Some time later I tried again quickly dropping it for unknown reasons for another...iunno...7-8 years? Either way it's last October, I wanna beat Pikmin 2, get to one of the games "dungeons" immediately lose like 50 pikmin from some hidden enemy, rage, quit again.

So while the first game has a hard "30 days to beat the game else you game over" time limit. This game does not, it has a day time limit, but you can play as many days as you want. Dungeons do not have time limits, however you need to bring the right 'mins for the job as each dungeon has different hazards, and also you can't get more pikmin for the most part in a dungeon. Near the end and someone ate all your guys? SoL SON!...well...till I recently discovered you can just reboot the game and the game saves at the beginning of each floor...that made dungeons a bit more forgiving. STILL THOUGH, this game feels quite a bit harder than the first game, and that game had a pace you had to be at or you would game over.

Structure is kind of odd, you need to get 10,000 moneys and you win. Never felt like the game escalates or anything, the areas do get harder, and some of the dungeons are outright cruel, but...buisness as usual till you get your 10,000 moneys. Then you get to the part of...Did I beat the game? I got the 10,000, got an ending scene, an endgame stats screen, and credits...but a thing happens, and you can go back to get the rest of the treasure. You get a new area AFTER the credits, so...I'm just going to go the 10,000 is "beating the game" and getting all treasure is "100%ing the game". I think that's the community consensus.

I did enjoy my time with this game, but there are some things that are kind of annoying. I finished a dungeon, but there are enemies that steal your treasure and...permanently steal it. So I had this happen to me and I really don't feel like redoing the entire thing for one treasure. I may go back to it to keep chiseling at it over time, since it is a fun game...I just feel like I didn't beat it in the past for a reason, it's not as good as the original. The original had this focus, you have 30 days to collect the ship parts so you don't die, once you get x amount of parts or a certain part I forget how it worked, a final area is unlocked. You go to the final area and do this gauntlet that leads to the final boss and the game climaxes there and you win. Had a pretty smooth natural way of progressing you through the game. This ones gimmick is dungeons, so you collect like 3 things on the overworld and get the other 15 in these dungeons. More focus on the execution and combat over managing time and being efficient like the first game.

TL;DR the thing keeping me from even trying Pikmin 3, was not having beaten Pikmin 2, and the thing at the time keeping me from beating 2...was 1. Now I have completed 1 AND 2, I can get to 3...whenever I feel like plunking down full price for the sucker...thanks nintendo.

TL;DR mark 2. GOOD GAME, does some things better than the first game, but overall feels like a weaker entry.

vladgd

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #19 on: July 03, 2023, 05:21:23 PM »
Pikmin



METROID DUDE...pikmin dude in a pikmin mood? Well, with the whole 1+2 thing, beating 2 for the first time I wanted to revisit 1.

This is a game. Yep.

I really like this game despite it being kind of...annoying at times. Your 'mins like to trip and get lost and fall off bridges into the water where they die, get eaten, dig for sap when you're trying to do something else, all with this big honkin time limit, and a 30 days to beat the game or game over limit.

Despite that though, this game I wouldn't consider hard...but it does have a bit of a learning curve with some challenge to it. Kid me was using a strategy guide and I BARELY beat it in ~29 days. The final area took me 2 days, one to get to the boss, and the other to beat the boss.

Adult me...15 days, all parts, final area took half a day to get to and defeat the boss. Either kid me was bad at games or I got a lot better because I haven't touched this game since 2004...and I had a good time. Quite short, I only got on today to finish the "forest navel" area, and just one more part...one more part...3.5 or so hours later I am seeing credits. Short, doesn't overstay its welcome, fun, would replay again, better than the second game.

I think that covers it, no number because this is my second time beating the game, but yeah, 10 games already, didn't even break a sweat. I think people are sleeping on these games, myself included. Always wanted to play the third game but it was on the Wii U...then it came to switch but didn't want to touch it because I haven't beaten 2...well...more to come in the next post I suppose.

vladgd

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #20 on: July 04, 2023, 04:51:55 PM »
11. Pikmin 3 Deluxe



For the record I have been playing like all of these games at the same time...all of them...2, 1, 3, and the demo for 4...also none of them very long. 9h23 minute completion for this game, I think like ~6 for the first one and ~8 for the second one.

THIS is the entire reason I have been wanting to finish pikmin 2, not because I wanted to play pikmin 2 but because I wanted to play pikmin 3. It was another Wii U release like captain toad that I wanted to play, but didn't want to get a Wii U...now both are on switch I have both and have completed both.

I do highly recommend playing 1, and getting through 2 just to say you did it, but this game feels actually modern. It still has a "time limit of days before game over" but it's...so lenient to being almost a joke, it's more of a narrative device than a "you gotta be really efficient", because I beat the game in ~22 days, could have gone a few days faster...and I had like 77 days worth of juice remaining. If you get a game over, it's because you wanted to see the cutscene and didn't want to youtube it for whatever reason.

Definitely the easiest of the 3, and also has the most structure. There's a main objective they point to you on the map, that you can choose to ignore, but being as you don't have all of your pikmin from the start, that's the path you wanna go to get those. By time you get the last of your pikmin you're in that "end game" mode where you can just finish the game, or get all the fruits from the levels...then beat the game. So I went back and got all of those, none all that hard, but still fun level design.

The gamecube games looked good for the time, but this game just has a look that nails all of the aesthetics in the right way. Very good looking game, charming music almost akin to animal crossing in at least one area.

Plus the deluxe edition which is the only version on switch has what I think was DLC in the original game? Basically you're doing missions as olimar and co from what I assume is shenanigans after pikmin 2. Each mission is a single day, and you have a time limit to get all the fruits, at least for the first level. I think there's over 20 of em, ontop of the challenge missions that was in the base game, plenty more to do after finishing the game.

Game came out a decade ago, couldn't play it due to circumstances. Now that I have finished it...it's another one of those "will play again in the future" not too big of a time commitment, chill fun game.  Give these games a shot, not anything else like em.

*short edit*

Playing some of this dlc has me thinking. These games really "are" "technically" RTS games. Especially this one, swapping between characters to do multiple tasks at the same time...it's not starcraft or warcraft "at all" but ONE COULD SEE a comparison...

Again not apples to apples, but maybe apples to pears?

*completed dlc edit*

So I did all the "side mission" dlc whatever its called. ~14 missions or "days" in total overall a good time with a few caveats. I think I got "platinum" rank on all but mission 3, and some missions I won with seconds left on the clock. Almost to me feels like pass = PLATINUM, if you get gold or whatever it's a failure and you have to retry it.

I did like the variety, the missions in which were the most interesting required you to split up and multi task. This is where pikmin is strongest imo, and also gives me RTS vibes. Trying to be efficient juggling multiple tasks, just satisfying to do.

Final mission felt kind of tacked on. "heres 80 pikmin, you can make a few rocks over there, down the slope is 4 guys to beat up, down that slope is a boss, after you beat the boss there's another boss, take 3 parts back with like 7 minutes left on the clock, gg." It wasn't horrible, just felt lazy?

Still, worth playing. Different feel than the main game while still in most missions giving you the essence of what pikmin plays like. Plus being a part of the "deluxe" edition, it's free extra content for me, and more things to do in a game I already like and want to play more of is good. Good job Nintendo.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2023, 11:23:30 PM by vladgd »

vladgd

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #21 on: July 26, 2023, 07:43:43 PM »
12. Pikmin 4



I'm not done with the game...but I have seen the credits and enough "postgame" to talk about it.

Not going to dilly dally or talk around it, this is the best Pikmin game to date. It's also a pretty content rich game as far as Pikmin games go. I think 1 took me ~6 hours, 2 was ~8, 3 was just shy of 10...I think I seen credits in this title at around hour 19.

This game starts off with 3 areas, you get the 4th and FINAL area, then you do that and...credits. Then post credits...you come back and there's a 5th "final" area...and because I like to look things up, that isn't the final area at all, there's ANOTHER area which is the actual last area.

ONTOP OF THAT you have a postgame mode which is almost a game within a game. You play from Olimar's perspective of the things that happened just before this game started which kind of acts like Pikmin 1...but in Pikmin 4...only...kinda harder? Pikmin 1 was 30 parts, 30 days. This mode is 30 parts in...15 days. I completed it in 11 and ~2:20 completion time, but despite that, the old "pressure to do all the things before you perish" was loud and present in this mode, as it is lacking in the main game. Not a full game, but as a side optional thing, very fun and very welcome.

After doing that...you unlock a "trial of the sages" thing which is 10 of the "dandori" challenges. Basically take the DLC missions from 3, and it's kinda like that here. I only just did the first one thus far but from online comments a few of the later ones can be very hard to even complete, let alone get good scores on.

I still got a little ways to go before I chew through all what this game has to offer, and whether I can do it before Baldurs Gate 3 comes out next week...I am not 100% sure. But I seen credits thus game beaten thus I can make a post.

This is actually a great game and I had no hype at all for it until the Pikmin 1+2 thing was released, but compared to the last 3 games, they delivered, and then some. HIGHLY recommended to give this a shot.

*edit*

I realized I didn't even talk about the gameplay/mechanics/levels at all. Or even the night mode stuff, or the dog companion, or the light rpg stuff, or the "hub town", or the many "if you played pikmin 1, or 2, or 3" references...this is a CHONKY game. TL;DR all of it is good. The ONLY single con in this entire game is...the co-op is one of those "girlfriend co-op" modes where the second player just controls a cursor and throws pebbles...pretty lazy especially coming from the last game which had the second player controlling another captain...this game you could pick who plays as the dog who is "mostly" like a captain with some things he can do that the captain can't do, and vice versa. OUTSIDE OF THAT THOUGH...."chefs kiss" very quality vidya.

*edit*

So...this game has quite a bit in common with Pikmin 2, only executed a lot better.

Caves aren't a BAD idea...but with the og pikmin controls, they were pretty frustrating. With a few modern touches like...being able to select the proper pikmin...a pretty mandatory feature 1/2 lacked, caves are fun now.

No day time limit, and a "you beat the game but...we gotta go back!" style ending that makes you wanna play more to "100%" the game. Didn't do it in 2, and I won't do it in 2...but I did it in this game. 35 hours 55 minutes is my final playtime, all treasures, all missions, all rescues, all caves, all of the stats 100%. Now...there's still more I could do like platinum rank all the dandori challenges, there was an optional sidequest that gave you a meme reward I haven't done, but that's licking crumbs off the plate at that point, I finished the entire meal already.

One could look at the treasures in it's own menu each one has descriptions from multiple people and some treasures you found have animations or actions you can mess with.

Each enemy/plant/wildlife has an entry you can look at the model and read, from also multiple character perspectives.

...and a multiplayer mode I have yet to mess with.

This game is actually literally CONSIDERABLY bigger than the last 3 games put together. I know I sound like a broken record but this is a complete ass package of a game and it should be commended. Easily some of the most fun I have had playing games this year, the game has flaws but they are few and far enough to where the good heavily outweighs the bad.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2023, 10:46:06 PM by vladgd »

vladgd

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #22 on: August 24, 2023, 09:37:09 PM »
Baldurs Gate 3



So...been thinking about this all day. I'm gonna...not beat this game.

I preface, this game is VERY VERY GOOD.

VERY



GOOD

But

And a big ole BUTT...I ain't going to finish this game, until Larian finishes the game first.

I am not going to spoil anything, but let's just say, a few of the characters in this game are half cooked. Quests in the game that lead to...a good ending? NOPE just unfinished no matter what you do, cut content not finished.

I was thinking, do I finish the game and leave a bitter taste in my mouth when the first...85-90 hours have been fantastic...or just stop and come back when the game is done? I think this is for the best of my enjoyment of this game.

Also I play knowledge domain cleric, and the key feature of this class in 5th edition dnd..."ahem"

Quote
Channel Divinity: Read Thoughts

At 6th level, you can use your Channel Divinity to read a creature's thoughts. You can then use your access to the creature's mind to command it.

As an action, choose one creature that you can see within 60 feet of you. That creature must make a Wisdom saving throw. If the creature succeeds on the saving throw, you can't use this feature on it again until you finish a long rest.

If the creature fails its save, you can read its surface thoughts (those foremost in its mind, reflecting its current emotions and what it is actively thinking about) when it is within 60 feet of you. This effect lasts for 1 minute.

During that time, you can use your action to end this effect and cast the Suggestion spell on the creature without expending a spell slot. The target automatically fails its saving throw against the spell.

In Baldurs Gate 3, a lot of classes get cool stuff at 6th level. What do I get as a knowledge domain cleric? JACK SHIT, NO THING. Which is fine because apparently nobody even plays cleric, let alone knowledge domain, so it may be a while before they get to probably the least played class/subclass combo in the game. Let's ignore the fact that the other big feature of knowledge domain is literally a gith racial ability...that anybody who plays a gith anybody gets for free...Don't go knowledge domain cleric...play a wizard or another domain instead. Not even going to mention I played a mephistophiles tiefling which gets mage hand...but gith not only get the knowledge clerics channel divinity ability without needing to be a cleric, they get a BETTER MAGE HAND that is invisible! That race alone invalidates my race AND class, inbalance much? I am just ASSUMING knowledge cleric is unfinished, at least I hope so.

So that I got my bitching out of the way, I am going to put this on the backburner for a while. I may go back to it with other characters to further understand the mechanics of the game, but I don't want to actually see the credits until this thing is done.

Not a case of dragon age inquisition where that is just a bad game and I'm not going to beat it. I WILL go back to beat this game when I can have a satisfying conclusion, but in the current state, it's just not possible. I can still highly recommend this game, it didn't just "accidentally" become my third most played game on steam. It's very damn good.

*edit*

I will mention that time played was not only not enough time for me to beat the game, but this game has no grinding, no "kill 3 orcs" "gather 6 pieces of lumber" mmo quests, it's a dense, fully voice acted game with very little "filler". It's kind of amazing when you stop to think about it. You couldn't even grind if you wanted to, things that are dead stay dead, there would be no way to grind or "farm" like you can do in many other rpgs.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2023, 09:50:00 PM by vladgd »

vladgd

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #23 on: August 30, 2023, 07:19:46 PM »
13. Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon



So uhh, as soon as I seen it for sale within 1-2 before any "rationality" hit my brain I preordered the "big dick" edition of this game. "cough"



To my defense, it's half the price of the "really big dick" edition with the hanger bay the AC can go in...but still...wasn't cheap for a game what haven't had a sequel in over a decade.

The good news though, this is a good videogame, a very good videogame.

Community, myself included was worried upon seeing "estus flasks" being inserted into the game and big over the top bosses that this game was gonna be armored souls coreborn...but thankfully it isn't the case.

The healing kits/estus flasks/potions, well "repair kits" to my understanding are in the game to raise tension. They heal for 4k a pop, if you have 12k life that's like having 24k life only not all at once. Pretty inoffensive, not too bothered. Besides that there's a "stagger" system in this game. Funny how this thing I didn't like in that game I didn't like (final fantasy 13) started popping up in other games, and in this one too. I don't think the game needs it, but the kids like the stagger? It doesn't really affect the game in a positive or negative way for me so I guess it's just there. Why do consistent damage when you could do very low damage except in certain "damage windows". Again I am more indifferent, but I would favor it not being in the game.

Gameplay is mad fun though, very fast, controls well...very...difficult game. First level, VERY FIRST LEVEL OF THE GAME, 6 attempts to beat it. You could go "that's so souls of them" or...remember the first armored core game that the very first thing you do before knowing any of the complicated controls is "hey fight these 2 mechs, if you die game over this is 1996 we don't got time to coddle you" so throwing a boss while not unfair being a bit too challenging for a player with at this point in the game, 5 minutes of understanding of the controls/combat and it's pretty tough. 

Plenty of missions/arena to do. Plenty of reason to replay missions to collect logs that when you get X amount of them you unlock parts. Certain missions have chests you can miss, so you can replay those to snag those. My experience after beating the game in NG+ there's a routine early mission I was replaying only for there to be a decision to make...that wasn't in the first playthrough. This alt path through the mission unlocks NG+ only missions, and I got access to a different tab of the arena after chapter 2 of NG+. Good incentive to play more of this game after seeing credits, besides the big thing that is hard to put into words. This game is just fun to play.

To compare apples and oranges a bit, Final Fantasy 16 exists. Removing my expectation of wanting an rpg and receiving a character action game with an entire tv show season worth of cutscenes jammed into it, the playing of that game to me in the short time playing it was very uninteresting. Mash square, dodge sometimes, there's also stagger in that game too, do more damage in the window, do it again. This game has the stagger bullshit, and the action combat, without the 13 hours of cutscenes...but the part where I do the pew pew and dodge dodge is...again hard to say with words, but it's fun. It's just engaging gameplay that feels damn good, if you like big killey robots and like well crafted fun ass combat, I can only recommend this game. I am probably being unfair to final fantasy, and the real reason is I just arbitrarily like the "vibes" from armored core over final fantasy...but iunno, I want to play more of this post credits than even finish that, so there's something in this game that that game don't have.

Texting a former co worker who has the game earlier he mentioned how Fromsoft knows this game ain't touching Elden Ring, but they made it anyway. I hope it does financially well to see the franchise come back from the dead with a new release every few years because I'm having a blast. The critical reception seems to be doing pretty good so I know I ain't the only one having a good time. Variety is the spice of life and while I love me my rpg's they would get dull if it weren't for all these other genres keeping me busy. Now if you excuse me, I need to smash my head against the Chapter 2 endboss on NG+...again.

*edit*

What I apparently meant by smash my head against the chapter 2 boss...apparently meant doing it in one try...barely by the skin of my teeth, but one try > the 15 or so tries it originally took me.

*edit*

Finish the game NG+
Finish the game NG++

Do everything in the game sans "S rank all missions" which...I "might" do later...I did S rank the "NG++ specific FINAL BOSS" multiple times to do money grinding to get the rest of the parts...but other missions look like a pain in the ass to go for S so I may just stop there.

Gonna end this with...there's some similarities with Nier Automata here...and to go back to the FF16 comparison. I give this game a pass and not that game, despite doing the exact same thing because...BECAUSE...this game is actually fun. The fuck would I play a game I ain't even find fun 3 times over a game I find really fun 3 times and I'll probably play it more in the future.

This game is fuckin boss, my "non metroid dread GOTY" is gonna be difficult to pick this year. Because it's totally metroid dread...but these other games need props too.


« Last Edit: September 06, 2023, 06:26:19 PM by vladgd »

vladgd

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #24 on: September 15, 2023, 10:53:15 PM »
F-Zero 99



Games journalists "Yeah the only thing announced at the nintendo direct was paper mario ttyd remake, C- nothing else of note"

Me "ttyd, new SaGa game, new wargroove, tomb raider 1-3 remakes, contra,...F FREAKIN ZERO?!"

This does NOT make up for nintendo all but abandoning the F-Zero series for the past 20 years, and this is NOT the game to "bring it back"

HOWEVER...this game is a lot of fucking fun...ngl...

I already have the premium nintendo service thing so I didn't even buy this as it just comes with that, so I've been cracking this the past few days and it's tough to put down. I don't know what it is, but this game just works. 99 players, chaos, fun, can feel actually good about finishing in 30th place.

Goddamn this came out of nowhere, I ain't going to put a ton of hours into this, but while it's fresh and people are playing it, it's a blast. Would I recommend getting the nintendo premium service only for this, if you aren't a big F-Zero guy? No...but if you have it, or if you're an F-Zero fan, give this bad boy a try. It's a lot more than just the snes game with an online taped to it, it's full HD, looks really nice for what it is, has new mechanics not in the old games kind of tailored to the online nature of this game. You can also unlock a bunch of stuff by doing a variety of things, and a time trial mode thing too.

Probably cut it off there, I figured I'd try it for 10-20 minutes as a novelty...3-4 hours later "one more race, one more race".

Very Impressed.

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #25 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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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #26 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.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2023, 07:04:03 PM by vladgd »

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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #27 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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Re: 2023 Still Back Loggin'
« Reply #28 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.