Author Topic: 2024 Endless Backloggery  (Read 3328 times)

vladgd

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2024 Endless Backloggery
« 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.

vladgd

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Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Reply #1 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.

vladgd

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Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Reply #2 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.

vladgd

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Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Reply #3 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.

vladgd

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Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2024, 06:17:24 PM »
Death's End



So that new vidya that everyone is playing...decided to polish this series off.

Hard to talk about books without spoiling anything. So to be vague, longer than the last two, has highs higher than the second book, but overall I think the second one was better.

Good read, ends on some interesting notes. Main character Cheng Xin was a bit...frustrating at times given the opportunity to do something productive her answer is to just...not when it matters. Luo Ji probably the best character in the series. Most of the interesting stuff doesn't have anything to do with characters anyway, mostly universe/scifi stuff they go into caught my interest. Reference Carl Sagan flatland and I will be very interested.

Thinking on the trilogy as a whole I'd put dark forest > 3bodyproblem > deaths end.

Deaths end has some of the coolest ideas, but falls short on the main character just fucking things up being the weak part of the story.

In the meantime I aquired...like 20 more books so...I guess I got work to do, and the vidya...and warhammer...and...life and stuff.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2024, 06:28:47 PM by vladgd »

vladgd

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Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2024, 12:11:49 AM »


Not even gonna title this one, just me buggering around. That other ff7 has had me wanting to play the original side by side, and...kinda wanted the plat so I did.

Forgot how annoying limit breaks were on characters you don't use. Basically have to use a guide to know whether you need to "kill x amount of enemies with THAT CHARACTER, or use x limit break x amount of times" to raise your limit level. Just because you have the final limit break doesn't mean that character can use it...grind grind grind required.

Last achievement was the 999,999,999 gill one which requires mastering like 60 all materias to sell or something. If you know what to do, and abuse the 3x speed the ps4 port has, it's quick enough, quicker than those final limit break achievements anyway.

That said, had NO issues at all playing on ps4 years ago, but playing on ps5 feels really buggy. Pretty regularly the music cuts out, scrolling feels touchy and unresponsive, and rarely but has happened at least twice the triangle button for the main menu just wouldn't work unless I transitioned to another screen. This is an old game that worked on ps1 just fine, I played it on psp just fine, played it on ps4...why is ps5 an issue?

Either way, still a good time. FF7 is one of those classics that I know I have enjoyed in the past, but still manage to be a great time no matter how old I get.
 

vladgd

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Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2024, 10:43:40 PM »
2. Final Fantasy VII Rebirth




Ohh boy ohh boy ohh boy ohh boy, it's half way through april and I am on game numero...dos...

This game came out when...29th of Feb, and it is April 15 as I type this, 121 hours to completion. This is a big fuckin' game, it's got the length of a persona game with none of the grinding.

I feel like I could write a small novel of my experience with this game, but I'll truncate it enough just to encapsulate my thoughts.

First thing's first since it's fresh. This game eventually ends, it feels like it doesn't, but it KEEPS...going...on...forever...videogame developers, you don't need like 10 forms of final bosses to end your game, just end the fucker I got other things to do. Very frustrating final sequence with (tiny text spoilers of final boss) WHY THE FUCK IS sephiroth WHO IN THE ORIGINAL YOU FIGHT ONE FUCKING TIME AT THE END...gonna be the final fucking boss of all 3 of these shits. Like c'mon, it's actually pretty lame and unoriginal. That said, it was annoying, the game warns you to prep...but with no context of what you need on WHO'M, I ended up ill equipped because basically they choose for you who to use for what sequence and when, so if barret is your healer...better...be glad you are on normal mode and can use items because that's all you got to sustain yourself.

Ending just sucked, well PLAYING the ending sucked, the scenes thereafter...very...interesting. I can't spoil shit but this game, moreso than the last game may hint in some...multiverse fuckery, mabe the original ff7 did happen, but this one is also happening. I can't go into detail as to why, the ending of the last game already went in on some stuff happening...it do go in some directions...

Negativity aside, BESIDES the final chapter, I really didn't want this game to end. From start to ~the last 5 hours of my 121 hour playthrough, I mostly had a great time playing this game. The already fantastic personalities they game the cast goes even harder here, the music is 10/10, it just is THAT good.

As a fan of the original, and as someone who was very critical of the last entry...my defenses are down on this one. It's gotta be one of the best games square has ever made. Not sure how it will stack on repeat playthroughs...but as a one and done, it does the final fantasy 7 name justice.

Even warmed up to the combat...still not perfect...but I kind of see why they went the action route having put all these hours into the game. Could use a bit of spit polish for the third entry, certain bosses basically have "game over" states, so if you don't play good enough, you just die, a binary skill check, which is pretty lame. MOST OF THE GAME THOUGH, it's fun, and challenging, but doesn't get too frustrating...most...of the time...

Graphically...well play the original and this side by side. Look at Junon in the og, then in this...it's a real treat.

Card game is fucking awesome, did every ounce of what I could do. I hope they can retool it into a standalone game, it's great.

Random ass going hard on production values, like chocobo racing. Random side stuff...they didn't need to do the art for the chocobo race track selection screen THAT good. Minor thing to take note of but even the random one off stuff feels like it got a bunch of love put into it.

Crazy obscure references like THIS are in the game. Even the part where you do the battle is the area in the original where the test enemy is encountered. Very cool.

They do kind of change direction of the original game late in gongaga...like being vague, cid, a town, another area you can do before the temple of the ancients...I think they're...not rewriting...but...well...I mean those ghost whispers whatever they call em...I mean they don't straight up say it but this gotta be an alternate universe of some sort...I mean right? Nothing crazy, probably trying to make the game flow better, save stuff for the third entry, yadda yadda, but still...they keep it vague, but obvious enough to keep you thinking.

Not gonna hard mode after seeing some of the dumber fights in this game, which means...the harder challenges in this game not too keen on doing. I did like everything in the game minus the situp minigame final challenges (because the squat game in the last one was torture and this is the same), and yuffie's cacutar crush hard challenges (because FUCK those), and anything "combat challenge" related I am just skipping. While I enjoyed the combat this time around...I still didn't love it...and prefer to do it only when needed. I'd wager I did about 95% of the normal content of the game which I'm good enough with.

I really loved my time with this game. Not sure I'll replay it before I'm 45, but...it's a once in a long time type of game experience. Might mess around with chapter select and boost all my characters to max level...maybe. But I think I'm more or less done, not crazy enough to even consider attempting a platinum so...not much point to doing whatever other challenges lie in the game.

Looking forward to the next one!

*edit*

-finished "all hard mode minigames"
-finished the final protorelic/all intel get
-got all queens blood cards
-hit level cap (finish game, go to gongaga with 2x xp materia on hard mode, kill stuff, goes by quick)

I ain't gonna plat this, no no, nononono, but still things to do, still enjoying diddling around in this game. Maybe I should start an ff8 or 9 playthrough focused on triple triad/terra master. Like a card game playthrough.

*edit*

-finished all quests

Ok for real I think I am "done" with this game. ~127 hours played.
« Last Edit: April 23, 2024, 05:29:40 PM by vladgd »

vladgd

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Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2024, 08:33:54 PM »
3. Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes




One of those "remembered it exists, was it ported to modern consoles? It was, 9 months ago? Guess I'll buy that after work." type of games.

Originally a ds game, I think it was soon after ported to ps3/x360. I got the 360 version on release and VERY QUICKLY quit because it was too hard, or I didn't like that you could lose elite units or something.

Either way, for what it is, ~23 hours played. Campaign spans 5 characters with their unique units/abilities/items. Difficulty isn't exactly balanced. It goes elves, humans, undead, demons, mages. I thought the difficulty from easiest to hardest was...probably demons=undead > elves > mages >> humans. I think the human campaign just throws you to higher level people you can't really practically beat without playing a certain path and felt uneven.

It's not an easy game, Iunno what the random gamefaqs poster was on when he said it was a 3/10 difficulty, flexing how good he is at vidya? Maybe I'm just not good at vidya, either way I beat this thing, I thought it was quite challenging for a good portion of the playthrough. That said it was hard to put down, I enjoyed myself despite the frustrating parts.

More "puzzle quest" styled games plz! There is puzzle quest 3...but with gems of war and marvel puzzle quest...it's f2p pay to win trash, worse than death. But hey, this game is good, try it out.

vladgd

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Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Reply #8 on: May 07, 2024, 08:35:39 PM »
4. Unicorn Overlord



Difficulty- Easy-Medium
Time to complete- 55 hours

This came out around a week after final fantasy so I didn't have time for it. That game cleared everything out of the way, now that I have time for it...It's real good...shocker, playing good vidya instead of bad vidya most of the time? PREPOSTEROUS!

I hear it's like Ogre Battle, not tactics ogre the game that spawned into final fantasy tactics, but ogre battle. It's a psuedo real time strategy rpg thing. It's not starcraft, it's not...diofield chronicle, it's unique. Individual classes don't matter as much as how they fit in a formation, and you move formations around a map. Enter battle and everything happens automatically, in fact you know the outcome of the battle before you even engage. If you aren't going to win, use another formation, or switch something up, or use an item, or maybe an assist. It's a bit weird not having ANY control over a battle, but when you realize the control comes before, not during it makes sense. Ontop of that it's not like you have no control, you still move units around, they got map abilities, there's strategy and tactics and whatnot.

Not all that hard...but the game kind of lets you break it if you want. Wanna fight stuff WAY higher level than you to get WAY more exp...it'll be hard but once you crack through it's snowballin time.

This is a special game, great presentation, fun, a vanillaware game that actually launched on hardware I have. (fuck you muramasa launching on the wii, to only ever get ported over to the VITA of all things, fuck you dragons crown for being ps3 exclusive...till I nabbed you on ps4 much later)

Gives me the urge to try ogre battle/ogre battle 64. No idea what's next, I did end up getting persona 3 reloaded on sale...but damn I don't need another long ass rpg right now. I need to go outside or something.

vladgd

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Re: 2024 Endless Backloggery
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2024, 09:33:17 PM »
5. Shining Force Gaiden



Difficulty- Easy
Time to complete- 18 hours

So the last game while very much ogre battle inspired, pretty much every single content creator to cover the game mentions Fire Emblem. And while I am not a fan of the Fire Emblem dickridery, and I have never played a single Fire Emblem game...I hear shining force is pretty similar...and it got me thinking about those games again...

I wanted to beat shining force cd, then having played it...it's not it's own game. It's a compilation of the first two shining force gaiden games on the game gear + a few bonus battles + one hard boss gauntlet. Being as the bonus battles use characters you leveled through the two gaiden games on the cd, and the fuckery with memory on the sega cd and you have to delete your gaiden 1 (or book 1 in this collection) save to even play book 2...nah.

I did beat book 1, which was the only way to play gaiden 1 in english. Already beat gaiden 2 a few years ago, known as "shining force sword of hajya" in english on the 3ds virtual console. Not much interest in the side content given the hoops you have to jump through to access it, it's more bonus content anyway and not a full game.

Gaiden 1 though, fun game. Do you like shining force? This is that, minus the explorable worlds, just battle to battle to battle, like in sword of hajya. Familar character tropes, main character is the "hero", you get a mage, healer, centaur paladin, yadda yadda. Balance is different so while you end up receiving similar types of characters in these games, who's good and bad tends to get changed up. Shining force 2 mages are "ok" and archers are mostly terrible, this game...mages are still "ok" but archers are fantastic. I think mages were better in 1? Either way these are mostly just simple quick to play srpgs with good presentation.

Worst part about this series, besides the fact that it's dead, and any new "shining" games are just random anime weeb games with nothing to do with the shining force universe or gameplay...is...a good few of these never got english releases. On game gear there is 3 gaiden games, we got 1...the second one...it's a trilogy...they aren't standalone...wat? There's a fantranslation of the third  gaiden game I hope is fully playable, but I am having issues finding shining force 3...which...is the first...in ...a trilogy...of...shining force...3? There's a scenario 2, and 3, japanese only, no even hint they exist outside of hearing about them. So...that'll be a task.

AAAANYWAY, didn't really talk about the game much, but it's not really reinventing the wheel, these games are pretty similar at the end of the day, but I like em and can recommend em.