Reviews Rate the game you finished/retired

Avern

Junior Member
May 14, 2020
61
185
33
Finished a couple of shorter games.


I was excited for this one, because the developer's previous game, Spectromancer, was amazing. Unfortunately, Astral Towers doesn't measure up. The basic mechanic is that you and your opponent take turns summoning creatures onto a 3x2 grid, where they'll slug it out with each other until one of you destroys the other's tower. It's almost identical to Spectromancer's system, except messier. If there's only one unit in a player's front row, it will be auto-targeted by all enemies, even if they're in different lanes. It makes for fights where it's almost trivially easy to maintain board control once you take over, and also cuts down on the ability for units to have a powerful effect but weak stats. In late-game battles, I just spammed a mana-gain spell until I could play my biggest cards, and it didn't just worked, but it seemed like the only viable strategy. It's a fun enough campaign, but it just feels brainless compared to the deep strategy that defined Spectromancer, and I can't get over that.

The game is probably more interesting against other players, but the online option is locked out, and hotseat multiplayer isn't going to cut it. The game is actually from 2011 (never having made it to Steam). I think the multiplayer option is a relic of that release, and probably not going to be available in the future.

6/10


This one's a puzzle-stealth game where you control a girl and a cat, trying to slip past a bunch of robot guards that are keen on beating you with nightsticks. The core gimmick is a timeline that lets you slide back and forth through time, synchronizing all of your movements to perfectly evade the patrols. It has a small pool of mechanics that get doled out slowly: switches to open/close doors, special gems that give you a one-time-use ability to either repair a bridge or destroy a guard, a meow from the cat to lure robots, and vents for the cat to crawl through for quick escapes.

When the guard patrol patterns are simple, the game is interesting and fun. You usually have to come up with some clever way to sequence things to make a path for the characters. However, a lot of levels feature complex patrol patterns and they make for some tedious trial-and-error gameplay. Those stages require a lot of "try something - nope a guard moved and spotted you - rewind a bit - try again accounting for that guard" over and over until you get through. I'm not sure any of those stages did anything particularly clever, and they were a real letdown compared to the levels that demanded a more proactive approach to the guards.

The presentation was great though. The graphics are crisp (feels very Lara Croft Go inspired) and the cat is cute. I had a good time with it, despite a few dull puzzles.

7/10
 
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Ge0force

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
2,335
7,296
113
Belgium
Finished two pieces of DLC yesterday:


This time you're playing as Chris in the mines, which is a far less exciting/creepy environment than the other locations of the original game. Chris can use a melee attack after a successful shot, but this didn't always work for me so I barely used it. Some enemies can only be shot with a certain ammo type which is annoying. The story, voice acting and action are okay tho. Not very good, but not bad either. And it's free, so go play it! :)



I have mixed feelings about this DLC. Just like the original game, the writing, voice acting, music and art are excellent. But sadly, the story is rather... forgettable. Next Exit lacks the memorable moments and funny situations that the original game has plenty.

I'm still recommending this DLC because you'll get to know the main characters a lot better, and Marina is as cute as ever. And I really hope that more DLC is on it's way, hopefully with a more interesting story tho.
 

MegaApple

Just another Video Game Enthusiast
Sep 20, 2018
574
1,142
93
Finished "Zero Escape Virtue's Last Reward"

Holy Fuck, Holy Fuck, HOLY FUCK!!!

I don't think there will be mindbending games quite like 999 (DS Version) and VLR. While I greatly prefer 999 (DS version) mainly because it has one of THE BEST endings in gaming history, VLR was is still a fantastic time.

What they nailed
  • Story
  • Narration style
  • Puzzles (harder, but not illogical)
  • Writing
  • Attention to detail (combining real life science and story)
  • 10/10 Localization
Issues/Nitpicks
  • Cheap 3D moddling + animations don't do Kinu Nishimura's art justice
  • MANY unskippable transition sequences
  • Some questionable details.
  • Meh characters + too exposition dump-y
 

Virtual Ruminant

Junior Member
May 21, 2020
121
248
43
Finished Superliminal (Pillow Castle, 2019)

A surreal first person puzzle game heavily inspired by The Stanley Parable, but it is a puzzle game first and foremost, with actual puzzles and puzzle mechanics.

I got this game for ~ 5 eurobucks thanks to a 10 eurobucks discount voucher I still had in my EGS account and for that price, it's a steal. I also had a pretty good time with it, finished it in two evenings. Some of the puzzles had me stumped for just the right amount of time before I found the solution to get that extra bit of rewarding satisfaction.

If you're not a hardcore FPP freak like me, and moreover if you've never played The Stanley Parable, this game will probably blow your mind and get you a couple good laughs on top. For me though, it's only been two months since I played the new platinum standard for surreal first person puzzling (Manifold Garden), and what can I say, I'm spoiled now. And my login screen background for the last 8 years has been the view down the corridor from inside Stanley's office.

Pro:
  • The whole art direction and scenario is incredibly flattering (i.e. thoroughly imitative) of The Stanley Parable, which could be a con, but, and kudos to the developers, they pretty much nailed it.
  • Pretty smooth difficulty curve
  • Innovative forced-perspective based puzzle mechanic
Con:
  • The whole art direction and scenario is incredibly flattering (i.e. thoroughly imitative) of The Stanley Parable, which could be a pro, particularly since the developers pretty much, but not quite, nailed it.
  • A little too short
  • The level designers for some reason could not even fill this relatively short game with just puzzles based around the forced-perspective mechanic, so you also get some find-the-exit and - who could have seen it coming - follow the weird corridors while listening to the funny voice-over filler, which, while not really bad at all, still does feel like filler.
3.75/5
 

Bonfires Down

Junior Member
Nov 18, 2019
172
379
63

The art, animation and sound in this title are astoundingly good, but I found myself wanting somewhat meatier gameplay. I like the combat in Flashback and Heart of Darkness and I think it could have added some spice to this game too. I would also have liked and kind of expected a more prominent story. I'm sure some people will appreciate the mystery and piecing together the details but I like my stuff more on the nose. The section at the end had me laughing my ass off for a while though. :grinning-face-with-smiling-eyes: I will let my thoughts on Inside marinate for a while but for now it's a

7/10
 
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Ge0force

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
2,335
7,296
113
Belgium
Finished Valkyria Chronicles


Valkyria Chronicles is one of my favorite games ever. It's an innovative hybrid between turn-based combat and a 3rd person shooter, with a great story with lots of cutscenes, charming characters, unique graphics and challenging tactical combat. There are plenty of different weapons (machine guns, rifles, rocket launchers, grenades, mortars, sniper rifles and even flame throwers) and you can drive tanks with lots of configuration options. You can keep up to 20 characters in your squad, each with their own unique perks and personality. And there's lots of variation in campaign missions, almost every mission has/adds something unique. If you haven't played this one yet, stop whatever you're doing and go play it. You won't regret it 😀

Score: 9.8/10
 

fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
4,513
10,409
113
Finished


It's a good game, I like the music and the design is pretty great, but I felt like the devs have overused the "look here, oh shit, look behind you something changed" from the first game which I liked better, but Im also not sure if this game is by the same devs as the first game, Observer and Blair Witch. The first game and Observer I liked a lot.

The story was kinda confusing and there are 3 erndings. I wish I could have interacted with more stuff. It was also etiher much less scary/spooky than the first game or I have watched so many horror movies and played so many horror games before that I might have been desensitized by the horror genre. Imn terms of games I feel like a horror game need to be in VR to be scary for me these days.

Score: 7/10.
 

Virtual Ruminant

Junior Member
May 21, 2020
121
248
43
Completed Submerged (Uppercut Games, 2015)

It's an indie take on the AAA open world clear-all-items-on-the-map collectathon formula, with no peril or combat (the only way to "die" is finding some bit of level that hasn't been properly gated off and falling through the map, which the game will mercifully detect 100% of the time and reset you back to the last checkpoint).

Pro:
  • Very nice and atmospheric open world, the submerged city is great, so is the strange wildlife and there's a complete day / night cycle with various weather conditions, some pretty nice mid-10s Unreal Engine 4 work on display here
  • Good piano/orchestral soundtrack and atmospheric sound FX that bring the world to life
  • Some of the navigation puzzles actually do live up to the world puzzle. At least I had to go back a couple times because I missed collectibles on buildings.
  • Doesn't overstay its welcome (took me 10 very leisurely hours to 100%, you could do it in 5)
Con:
  • The interesting post-apocalyptic scenario is a little wasted on the rather trivial story (told through little images unlocked by finding collectibles) and superficial gameplay, but then again, this is an Everyone 10+ (ESRB) rated game
  • The main character's animation is rough. I'm honestly puzzled by this because every other visual aspect of the game screams "look how AAA-pretty we can make our indie game", and then the one thing you are always looking at definitely has not enough animation frames.
3/5
 
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Gizmo

Non-Stop MMO Searcher
Dec 22, 2018
407
1,606
93
I'm playing through horror games for October.

So, hmm, I finished Silent Hill 4...and it was not good.



This was the second Silent Hill I've played, the other being Homecoming ( :face-with-tears-of-joy: - which I thought was laughably bad).

1. The whole second half of the game is backtracking through the whole first half of the game, all while your escorting one of the worst AIs I have ever had the pleasure to escort - and at certain points, with an unkillable man chasing you. The amount of times the AI got stuck on fences, walls - just things in general drove me nuts. Oh - she didn't zone with me, great...lets go back and find her again.

2. The melee combat, and that dodge. Everything in this game is so much more mobile than you, while your character feels like a rusted robot - I just went through half the game face-tanking stuff as it was the path of least resistance.

3. The Apartment was your base to save/store items. My inventory got so full all the time, loading in and out of that apartment constantly to store items was draining. You also had to go back there to save the game. I could not imagine having these load times on a PS2. Thankfully, not too bad on an SSD. I really, really loathed the going back constantly.

4. Puzzles, or the lack of puzzles. Not being too familiar with Silent Hill, you always hear great things about the puzzles, after playing 4 I have to assume it is only about the first three. Everything here consists of pick up item, insert here - not really what I consider to be "puzzles".

5. The sound effects. Were they serious with these? I burst out laughing half the time. The burping enemies and the moaning ghosts gave me a hearty chuckle anytime I encountered them.

Only things I liked were the atmosphere of some of the levels and the music in certain parts. I was pretty indifferent towards the plot and characters - the minimal amount of dialogue made it difficult to really get attached to any of them, and then the plot seemed like the standard cult ideas you see in media. The Hauntings in the apartment were pretty cool, but seems like not much was done with them.

Overall: 4 / 10


I also finished Silent Hill 2 - write up on that later.
 
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fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
4,513
10,409
113
Finished


This game was suprisingly good. Enjoyed the design, the world, the characters and the story even though I was a bit dissapointed in the mysterious stuff like the Ctuhulu and the cult. It was a short game and they could have brought more mysterious stuff into the game, ending was kinda lame despite the different endings. And the gamepaly was janky and the walking and running speed a bit slow, but overall a good game.

Score: 8/10.
 

Gizmo

Non-Stop MMO Searcher
Dec 22, 2018
407
1,606
93
Finished Silent Hill 2:



1. The atmosphere of the town is fantastic, helped immensely by the fog. It really creates this claustrophobic, eerie, and oppressive feeling against the player. Even though there is all this room to run around, you still feel like you're being "choked" more or less by the environment.

2. I put combat on Easy, and I was happy I did. Shooting with the gun is fine, but melee is still just as awkward as it was in SH4 - but at least all the enemies in this one are pretty stationary more or less, so it never feels like a burden like it did to me in 4. Like you can really stun-lock them before they were able to get a hit in most of the time.

3. Puzzles. I put the puzzles on hard mode. I was embarrassed by one of them, which I will refrain from mentioning here because it was truly embarrassing once I figured out the solution. Meanwhile, I solved the Hard Mode Shakespeare puzzle in SH3 in under an hour, so who knows how my brain operates. But the puzzles were all pretty fun and I enjoyed solving them. Only 2 of them took me a while.

4. I enjoyed the characters and story. The voice acting was a bit cheesy, but in a B-movie type way, so I found it a bit endearing. But compared to 4, I was happy this had the "cult" stuff in the background, and that the forefront was a much more personal story for the player character, James. I'll refrain from mentioning any spoilers but I enjoyed the direction, although I was a bit lukewarm on the ending I got.

5. The music, the sound, the radio, all top notch. Some really horrifying sounds in that audio.

I played it on the PC using all the Enhanced Edition mods and was impressed. It still holds up and I'd recommend it to anyone today.

Overall: 8 / 10.

As mentioned, am now currently playing through Silent Hill 3.
 
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OP
Ge0force

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
2,335
7,296
113
Belgium
Finished Don't Escape: 4 days to survive


This game is definitely one of the best point & click adventures I've played in the past few years. The story is great, most of the puzzles have a not-too-hard solution that makes actually sense and the replayability is very high because there are several possible events on each day. Very, very recommended!

Score: 8.8/10


Finished: The Gardens Between


Short but excellent puzzle game, with plenty of creative time-based puzzles, beautiful graphics and a charming visualized story about the friendship between two kids. While the puzzles may appear simple at first because you only control time, the devs succeeded in turning this concept into a great game. Very recommended!

Score: 8.9/10
 

Linkark07

IDKFA
Apr 18, 2019
20
59
13
Continuing with 3DS games using Citra...

Finished replaying Fire Emblem Fates: Revelations... Yeah, no matter how many years pass or how you try to fix the level of the units recruited, this route still sucks in almost every regard.

So, let's go first with the good part, although YMMV: you have all the units from both routes. Guess that's all.

Bad part: almost everything. People complain about Conquest story, but this one is even more nonsensical, plus Corrin is a bigger Gary Stu/Mary Sue here.
Corrin: Guys, I can't tell you, but please believe me: there is another enemy. An invincible enemy.
Ok, I'll believe you Corrin.

The worst. But ok, I can ignore the story, just like Conquest, and focus on the gameplay and maps. Nintendo promised us that Revelations would be a mix of Birthright and Conquest.

Nah. This doesn't come close to Conquest at all. And it is even worse than Birthright. Sure, not all maps are boring rout fest like Birthright, and there are varied objectives like kill boss or capture place, but the maps are boring and many of their gimmicks are terrible. Plus many of them force you to use Royals because of the Dragon Veins. Overall, I think there are only like less five maps that aren't terrible. Say, one of the early maps, it is completely covered by snow. And you need to waste time destroying parts of the snow just to reach the boss. Meanwhile, there are enemies hiding inside the snow, so if you aren't careful, you might be out of your most powerful units when you uncover them. That map is bad.

But that's not all. For some reason, IS decided to give you weak units in the later maps. Chapter 17, and you get two promoted units and 4 prepromote units lower than 15. Meanwhile, almost all the enemies are promoted, so these new units are deadweight already. Good luck grinding them if you want them to be somehow useful. That said, it is easy to modify some files to improve their levels, making them finally useful. This doesn't save the route though.

Fire Emblem Fates is perhaps one of the most disappointing games ever. I am not expecting a good story from Fire Emblem, but at least give me a proper story. Fates isn't that. Gameplay wise, only saving grace is Conquest, which has the most exciting maps in the entire franchise. Conquest Lunatic Classic is a thrill to play. Revelations took some maps from Conquest, but here, they aren't so interesting. Characters aren't that memorable either.

Overall, I would score Revelations as 4/10.

Now, it runs well on Citra; has some flaws like some slowdown, but isn't that noticeable. In fact, this runs better than Awakening.

Next game I hope to review, and soon is Horizon Zero Dawn. Just finished Frozen Wilds and I'm going to rush the last main missions in the main game.
 
OP
Ge0force

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
2,335
7,296
113
Belgium
Abandoned: Divinity Original Sin


I'm sure it's a great game, but apparently it isn't for me. The game feels rather old-fashioned, and was throwing so many poorly explained game mechanics at me in the first hour, that I was completely overwhelmed. It felt like studying a complex program for work, so I gave up. Perhaps I'll try again later...
 

Virtual Ruminant

Junior Member
May 21, 2020
121
248
43
Finished Night Call (MonkeyMoon / BlackMuffin, 2019)

A noir detective visual novel where the player steps into the shoes of a Parisian taxi driver who almost falls accidental victim to a murder spree and then gets roped into helping the police investigation into the crime against his will.

Pro:
  • Design and art direction here are top-notch - graphics, animation, music, sound design, everything lands to make this a tight, homogenic noir experience
  • Three different investigations and lots of side-characters provide a lot of of content to explore
Con:
  • The game is let down by the overwhelmingly bad writing which indulges in one cliché after the other, keeps trying to land jokes but ends up making the player cringe and ruins tragic characters with sophomoric characterization. The noticeably less-than-stellar translation from the French original into English does not help either.

So ultimately a visual novel that looks and sounds really nice, but doesn't read so great. Style over substance. At least the superb presentation kept me playing through all three investigations, if the game had been any less polished, I would have abandoned it after the first one.

2.5/5
 
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C-Dub

Makoto Niijima Fan Club President
Dec 23, 2018
1,006
3,032
113
33
Cardiff, Wales
www.playedthat.com
Super Mario Sunshine (Switch)

Where to start... Sunshine begins as a fun 3D Mario. It's difficult and a little glitchy, but it ultimately feels like a solid 3D Mario game. There's a hub world to explore, and levels with lots of inventive platform challenges. It doesn't feel as revolutionary as Mario 64, but does it need to be? I feel the water gun mechanic isn't as good as Nintendo hoped it would be, and the lack of diversity in level environments makes the whole thing feel little monotone, but ultimately it's a solid game.

Where it falls apart is in how progress is gated behind certain missions. This means that, unlike in Mario 64 where you were free to determine how to progress to the next boss, Sunshine takes you on a set path, making the non-essential content feel superfluous. What's worse is the game isn't even clear about this. 64 tells you that you'll need X-amount of Stars to get through a door, letting you get those Stars however you choose. Sunshine just expects you to flop about until you accidentally stumble on progress. Once I hit a roadblock to progress and had to lookup how to proceed, I felt so deflated and demotivated to continue that the remaining portion of the game felt like a slog.

Nintendo tried to give the feeling of freedom inside of a more linear/railroaded experience (both valid ways to make a game) and failed at both. And this is the crux of why Super Mario Sunshine is so maligned compared to other 3D Mario releases.

6/10
 
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Linkark07

IDKFA
Apr 18, 2019
20
59
13
Ok, finished yesterday Horizon Zero Dawn (PC).

Have to admit I bought this game a couple of years ago for my PS4... And hardly played it. At most, I finished the introduction and left the starting area. My main grievances were the 30 FPS and that I prefer to play in my PC than in my PS4. In fact, these days my PS4 is mostly a streaming/Spotify/Blu Ray machine.

But I digress. Main point here is Horizon Zero Dawn and the PC port.

Game is great, I have to admit. Aloy is an excellent protagonist, and her journey to find about how she was born has many interesting twists. In fact, I think the game is mostly about her journey and the world she lives in. Won't comment too much in case of spoilers, but I would say the story was one of the strongest points of this game.

Gameplay wise, it is an open world game with many activities to do. The game, thankfully, isn't filled with stupid quests like gather x items or kill y machines, something that plagues others. But there aren't memorable side quests; not that I'm aware of. Some of the quests reminded me of the Witcher 3 in which you go to a spot, find clues and follow the trail to continue it. Aside from quests, you have some machines that work as Ubisoft towers (there are only 4 or 5) to reveal more about the map, places to clean of machines, and what I liked most, the Cauldrons. Ancient places filled with machines and bizarre design. There are only few Cauldrons, but exploring them were my favorite parts of the game. Combat, you mostly use bows with arrows to destroy machines and exploit their weak points, but there are also other weapons like traps and bombs. Frozen Wilds give you more interesting weapons to play with.

Now comes the PC port. This game seems to be improving, but there are still issues. I admit my PC isn't the strongest, but at least it should have run better with low settings; that wasn't the case at the beginning. And even before I finished the game, I couldn't push it to be at least stable 60 FPS. But despite lower settings, the game is still stunning to watch. Guerilla did a superb job in this regard. Thankfully, I only had one crash, and that was while finishing Frozen Wilds. My biggest complaint besides the terrible performance was that each time you updated the GPU drivers, you had to wait like almost 20 minutes to have the game configured. Who thought that was a good idea?

Overall, this is a game that I would gladly play again if Sony manages to fix all the problems. Don't regret spending money on it, and I would consider buying the sequel in the future. Last missions were disappointing, although by then I was rushing the story since I wanted to continue with my backlog.

Game score: 8/10
Port score, as of right now, 6/10
 

Gizmo

Non-Stop MMO Searcher
Dec 22, 2018
407
1,606
93
Finished Escape from Bug Island



So, this is gonna be a doozy.

The premise here is you, Ray, - and two friends (Michelle and Mike) go to this mysterious island based on research Michelle was doing. The location of this island was mentioned in a book called the Necro-Notes she was researching. Upon arriving, everything goes wrong. Plot bullet points below. I'll spoiler tag them in case anyone wants to actually play this 🤣

  • As said before, you arrive at an island that was mentioned in a book called the necro-notes.
  • You tell Mike that you love Michelle, but Mike decides he also loves her at that same point
  • Michelle and Mike go for a walk, then you (Ray) go searching for them
  • You encounter giant bugs on the island! Oh no! Maybe going to a secret island mentioned in something called the "necro-notes" was not the best idea
  • You run across two other researchers who were also on the island, Harry and Lynn. While trying to help them, a king-kong clone appears and murders Harry. Lynn runs away.
  • You find Michelle and Mike being attacked by a giant spider, Mike falls off the bridge and Michelle runs away
  • Amazonian liizard women also live on the island and start attack you
  • You find Lynn again, saved by a man called Robert - but he is eaten by a graboid from Tremors.
  • Continuing your journey, you come across some Mayan ruins, where Michelle is, you rescue her but king-kong clone shows up again and she runs into a cave.
  • It turns out Beezlebub (Satan?) lives in that cave and kills Michelle, you are so distraught that the character falls in a hole...but it turns out the cave was called the Cave of Time! Yes, time travel!
  • Ray wakes up at the beginning of the game as he time-traveled back to the start, and you get to go through the whole game again saving all the characters this time around.
  • You save Harry, Mike, Lynn and Robert. It turns out Robert wrote the necro-notes.
  • You save Michelle, who finds out Robert is on the island and sends you on a quest the find a new pair of clothes to impress him.
  • The island is actually secreting a toxic gas, and Robert dies because he has lived here so long writing the necro-notes.
  • King-kong clone appears again and Michelle runs into the cave. You kill king-kong.
  • You save Michelle from Beezlebub. You win...?
  • As you try to escape the island, Robert resurrects as a bug-zombie. You kill bug-zombie Robert.
  • You escape the island on a boat.

Even with that plot summary, I really don't think I am doing the game justice. The moment-to=moment dialogue is laughable. This is easily the hardest I have laughed at a video game, my stomach was in constant pain. Just when you think the plot is starting to make sense, nope - throw something else at the player! One of the best parts of the game were these notes you could find left behind as hints/warnings for the player. They were comedy gold. Here are just two of them:

Apparently, my girlfriend has taken up with a colony of
Amazonian LIZARD WOMEN. I have decided that enough is enough.
Unfortunately, it didn't go over so well when I tried to break
it off, so I was forced to HIT HER IN THE FACE WITH A BAG OF
SAND and make my immediate escape. Call me callous, but I
can't envision spending the rest of my life with a woman who
eats bugs for lunch.
I know this sounds weird, but I really like STICKING MY HAND
INTO WEIRD PLACES. Like HOLES IN ROCKS, or dents in GARBAGE.
When I was a kid, I used to hide things in spots like these.
Maybe it's a bad idea to go reaching into random crevasses
around this island. But, for some reason, I can't stop myself.
Oh well.
Having said all that, this was also one of the worst games I've ever played. Gimmick motion controls, terrible combat, obnoxious enemy design - the whole game is just a struggle to actually play. Thankfully, you can just set the difficulty on easy mode and get plenty of healing items, so you most likely won't actually die or get stuck too much. You will probably spend most of the time playing this game just running by every single enemy in the game just to get the next story beats - it is what I did.

So ya...this was quite the experience. I never laughed so hard at a game before, but it was not actually "fun to play", but I enjoyed it immensely...so how do you rate this. It's like if you had a The Room equivalent for video games.

Score: WTF? / 10

Also recently finished: Silent Hill 3 , Vampire Night (PS2) and Michigan: Report from Hell which I'll make notes on when I have some time.
 
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Gizmo

Non-Stop MMO Searcher
Dec 22, 2018
407
1,606
93
Finished Michigan: Report from Hell



I really don't have that much to say about this one, other than it sucks, but I'll try anyway.

The mundane dialogue and voice acting is awful, there are some funny lines - but they are way TOO sparse to recommend this as a fun bad game, so most of the time it's just misery.

"This is the bar, alcohol is served here"
"This is the sound system"

Yes, I know! Everyone knows! You're all terrible reporters!

Gameplay solely consists of walking around, opening doors, and moving your reticle around the room to find something in which you can interact. You also have to spend lots of time waiting for the reporter to walk over and actually interact with the things, especially doors.

Dumb plot, military releases virus, blah blah.

Also this game should be called Lake Michigan: Report from Hell as it takes place in Chicago.

Score: 1 / 10
 

fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
4,513
10,409
113
Finished Ghost of Tsushima (PS4P)

It's a decent game with solid core gameplay and during the game you receive and can buy new skills and abilities with points you receive by completing missions and activities and helps with the combat variations, different styles of combat for different styles of enemies and stuff like that. The story isn't great, but I like the characters and the relationship between then. I also found the environments to be very beautiful, in general the graphics are pretty, but not Last of Us 2 pretty.

My problems is that it doesn't really do much new as an open world game, but I do like that it felt like a more focused Assassin's Creed. The world isn't particurlarly big and thanskfully there isn't 100s of icons on the map with stuff. So In general I liked the world, the characters, the combat, but the story was too predictable and it doesn't do anything new really. In one way it's solid because it doesn't take any risks.

Score: 7.5/10
 
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Ge0force

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
2,335
7,296
113
Belgium
Like MegaApple, I've completed The Messenger as well.


The Messenger is a smart hybrid of a Ninja Gaiden NES style platformer and a metroidvania game. As a platformer, this gamer does almost everything right: very good controls, clever level design, great story, funny dialogs, great boss fights, colorful graphics and an amazing soundtrack. At certain points in the game world you can "switch" between an 8-bit and 16-bit, which is really cool. Even the music changes from 8-bit chiptune to 16-bit SNES music when that happens.

But after a few hours, the game turns into a metroidvania, where you have to explore every corner of every level you've visited before, both in 8-bit and 16-bit mode. You do have a map, but because there are VERY few warp points, you'll have to play the same areas over and over and over again to find a certain object that you need to continue the storyline. This becomes annoying soon, and even very frustrating a few hours later. I can't possibly understand this design decision, and this makes me sad because everything else in this game is SO well done.

Score: 7.1/10 (would have been at least 9.1 without the backtracking)


Also finished Xenoraid


Xenoraid is a vertically scrolling shoot'em up with procedural driven missions. Unique in this game is that you can switch between 4 different ships during combat, combining temporary invincibility with the ability to switch between different weapon configurations. Every ship has unique pro's and contra's (ships with heavy weapons move and shoot slower for example) and weapons heat up when firing, so switching ships is a must and adds a great tactical element to the gameplay.

Another unique feature is that your ships tilt left and right when moving horizontally. This takes a while to get used to, but works so well when you master it that you wonder why other shoot'em ups don't do this. Very recommended!

Score: 8.6/10
 
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fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
4,513
10,409
113
Retired MediEvil Remake (PS4P)

I really wanted to like this game, I really did. The world design is great, it has nice graphics and decent music. The problem lies in the gameplay. I really hate the combat system and movement on the character. It's janky in a bad way and it's all around for me just not a good or fun game to play. One small touch by the enemy and almost half your life vanishes and the game has a lot of enemies in each level, the levels are thanksfully small. I died many times by the shitty movement, falling down from places and so on. I barely felty any hit detection when fighting and enemy or when I blocked and enemy. Some enemies like zombies just walked through me while using a shield at times. There's no checkpoint system either and you have some life bottles you can find during the levels, but no explanation about how they actually work. The game doesn't really explain a lot of things like "You now have daring dash", and Im like "okay, wtf is daring dash?" the game: "who knows, find it out yourself on google".

Overall a nice looking game with a super frustrating, janky and annoying combat and movement system that made the game just not fun and super frustrating. I just couldn't take it anymore so I quit a few levels in.

Good thing I bought it at 50% off on sale otherwise I would feel some extreme byers remorse, already feeling a bit of buyers remorse.

Score: 4/10.
 
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Gizmo

Non-Stop MMO Searcher
Dec 22, 2018
407
1,606
93
I just beat Blue Stinger




This, legitimately, is one of the worst games I have ever played, up there with that recent Michigan game. Now, you - the reader - are probably wondering what made me feel this way. First up, the worst aggressor, the music.

The music, the damn music in this game is a bombastic never ending assault on your ears. There is no semblance of silence. Once the song ends, it restarts, immediately. As you wander aimlessly from room to room, with not much happening, trumpets constantly are blaring as if some intense escape sequence is supposed to be taking place. This game was in desperate need of some ambient music or silence. I listened to this fucking Christmas song for 2 hours straight - because it loops...over and over and over. I had to take a few breaks from the headaches I was getting.

Enemies respawn whenever you leave a room, and as you'll be backtracking and revisiting rooms many times because this game is a maze, you'll find it best to run by as many of them as possible. It doesn't help that some have insane amounts of health. So, as touched on, this game is a maze and you'll probably get lost to the point where you seek out a walkthrough, I know I did. Why is this game a maze? The keys. Whomever made this game had a fetish for keys, I'm not kidding. At the end of the game, I had 46 keys that were necessary for opening up doors. I beat the game in about 6 hours! That's a key every 8 minutes. What the fuck? Stop with the keys. There were multiple instances of using a key on a door, enter next room, see that the door in this new room is locked - but what's this? A key on the ground to open the next door! WHY!? Just have the door unlocked and remove the key from the game.

Also, this is listed as a survival horror game, but it seems like a comedic game. I can't tell if the developers were trying to be serious with the horror aspect, especially with the soundtrack. The monster designs are also all seriously goofy, especially some of the bosses - like the car crab. The tone is all over the place. The enemies are pretty non-threatening too in that they drop money, and you get so much money you can just buy tons of ammo. The horror aspect to me would be ever playing this game again, it was misery.

Now, finally, the reason I played this game. The voice acting. This game was suggested to me because the voice acting was supposed to be terrible, and it is. The highlight is when the main character starts turning into a monster and has this "sick voice" which is on par with a child calling the school to say they are sick. It's hard to describe voice acting so I suggest listening to some of the clips here: Audio Atrocities (TM) :: Blue Stinger (Dreamcast)

All around, just some really weird stuff - like the hot tub scene with the MC and Dogs which was pretty unnecessary. The MC meeting Jeanine, and immediately hitting on her, calling her honey and being horny throughout the whole game. The alien anime waifu that follows you. The stupid 50 minute timed quest to find stamps in order to find "Dachshund" for a man. The Spider-Man sequence? I sat there scratching my head.

Sometimes art can't be put into words but if I have anything to summarize this with is, this might be one of the best games to play for how NOT to make a game.

Score: 1 / 10
 
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Jim_Cacher

MetaMember
Jun 3, 2020
611
1,651
93
A dirt cheap point-and-click with a fantastic story and seeing how the story unfold is truly fascinating. It does has questions unanswered but I think it allows players' imagination.

Minus 1 point for some obscure puzzles and magically-appeared items / unlocked doors due to how the progression was designed.


9/10. Highly recommend a playthrough in Spooky October.
 
OP
Ge0force

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
2,335
7,296
113
Belgium
Finished Surviving Mars


Great city builder with lots of different buildings, tech upgrades and game mechanics. You need to establish a colony on Mars, while providing your population with water, food and oxygen. But mental health is important as well. People need to live close to their work, should do the work they are trained for and they have lots of needs like social contact, exercise, luxury, art and of course gaming.

The game gives you different objectives depending on the sponsor you chose at the beginning of the game. There are also plenty of other options to choose from, allowing you to customize the difficulty and making replayability very high. I finished all objectives on 310% difficulty using Europe as sponsor, and this provided a decent challenge without becoming frustrating.

Like most games in the genre, late game can become a bit boring, but random events (story events, disasters, problems in your domes, resources running out) are keeping you busy. Very recommended!

Score: 9.0/10
 

fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
4,513
10,409
113
Finished


Prett cool "horror" game with really cool style of graphics, neat environments and creepy enemies. Remidns me of Silent Hill and Jacobs Ladder. Negatives are a kinda "forced" ending, slow start and bad saving system which almost got me to quit the game.

Score: 8/10
 

Linkark07

IDKFA
Apr 18, 2019
20
59
13
Just finished Ultimate Doom in Ultra Violence... Without cheats. Amazing. I have been playing Doom since I was a kid in the 90s, but have always used IDDQD and IDKFA. Never until now I considered playing the game without the cheat codes. Guess I didn't want to be another Doom poser.

Ahem, that said, the game isn't that hard. Perhaps using Chocolate Doom to replicate the original game would make it harder, I don't know. For the record, used GZDoom with Beautiful Doom mod and HD Textures.

As for the episodes, Knee Deep in the Dead is the best episode of the bunch. They are easy to navigate, you don't get lost and there isn't too much backtracking. Next episode is Thy Flesh Consumed. Again, perhaps because I played it using GZDoom, it might have been easier than what it was intended to be. Won't deny the first two levels are quite hard, but I only died once in Perfect Hatred. The only level that gave me problem was the second Romero map, Against Thee Wickedly, and that was because of the Cyberdemon at the exit.

Sadly, the quality of the second and third episodes varies. Inferno was interesting, but there were some stinkers maps like Unholy Cathedral or Slough of Despair. And don't get me started with The Shores Hell.

That said, despite these episodes flaws, Doom is enjoyable as always. This game is really ageless.

Score: 8/10

Next, Doom 2 in Ultra Violence. As for Plutonia... Dunno if I can stomach trying to finish it in UV without cheats.
 
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fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
4,513
10,409
113
Retired


It's sad because I really liked the game, it has the same concept as Carrion where you control an enemy mass and kill humans. The art style is great, the music is nice and during the first half of the game it's really fun. However the second half of the game he difficulty jumps to 11 and the whole game becoems annoying, frustrating and unbalanced. Many enemies such as the flame throwers are far too overpowered and you can't really surround the enemies with your units which is somewhat the point of the game. You control and hire different sorts of units and you get more units to control the more you play like swarm, worms, fishment, cultist etc.

The second half is simply too difficulty and unbalanced. I have no problem with difficulty games, I love Soulsborne games and lots of very difficulty games, but the gameplay and the unbalance just made everything annoying and you can't control each enemy type. Like cultists shoots "magic" from distance while crabs are melee units and there was so many times I just wanted to have melee units stand still while ranged units to shoot, but it doesn't work that way, you can't give orders.

Not gonna give a score on this one.
 

fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
4,513
10,409
113
Finished


It's more like a collection of experimental stuff, some boring and unitneresting, some quite interesting. Basically a a walking simulator with a good narrator. Not much to say about it, but it was decent and quite interesting at times.

Score: 7/10
 

MegaApple

Just another Video Game Enthusiast
Sep 20, 2018
574
1,142
93
Finished: Guacamelee 1


Dated memes, some boring backtracking, and forced requirements to get the good ending aside, this Metroidvania from 2013/14 still holds up. Some creative level design use and fantastic production (visuals and OSTs). Devs were clearly fans of old-school 2D games. Upgrades felt lacking, but it's a nitpick.
Steam Workshop provides additional costumes made by fans. Samus, Lara Croft, Bayonetta and Kratos are standouts.

Can't wait to try the sequel.

7.5/10
 
OP
Ge0force

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
2,335
7,296
113
Belgium
Retired Starcrawlers


It's the 2nd time I gave this game a chance, but it becomes SO boring and repetitive after a while. The concept is great, but the story has way too much boring discussions and the combat isn't that good. Every character has a unique buff system, which results in a lack of tactical combined attacks with multiple characters. You'lee be using the same attack combinations over and over again, so yeah, that gets boring really fast. The UI also isn't very good, you need to right-click enemies to see if they are buffed or debuffed. Characters you don't use in missions don't level up. And last not but least, you need to grind random generated missions to level up before playing the next story mission. Bleh...

Score: 5.0/10


Finished 198x


This game is a collection of 5 arcade games based on popular games from the late 80's/early 90's like Outrun and R-type. The games are tied together by a nostalgic story about a kid discovering the arcade halls. From a nostalgic point of view (I grew up in the 80's), the experience is great. The gameplay of most of the arcade games is mediocre tho. The shoot'em up is good, but the hitzones of the beat 'em up are awful and the race game lacks the sense of speed that Outrun has. The story also ends very abrupt, this is clearly only a part of the game it was meant to be. Despite these negative points, the game can be finished in under 2 hours and the soundtrack is really, really good. Worth playing if it's in your library, but not worth €10.

Score: 6.1/10
 
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fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
4,513
10,409
113
Finished


Played this many many years ago on PS3. I really like this game, the artistic style, the concept, the cute story. It's as hort game, like 1.5 hours, but I think the lenght is enough. The negatives are that the chapters in the game where everything is very dark is confusing and annoying at times, escpeially becaused spiders will hurt you in the dark and I wish the gameplay had some more variations.

Score: 8/10
 

AHA-Lambda

MetaMember
Oct 9, 2018
1,406
3,078
113
Ok, played quite a few things since I last posted in this thread so I'll try keep it brief.

Finished Crash Bandicoot 4 (PS4)

This one I feel conflicted on.
It's a well made game and I definitely enjoyed it BUT at the same time I can't help but be disappointed in it a little too as it's not what I wanted/expected from a Crash game.
Namely that this game is rock f*cking HARD. Getting through the levels alone is tough and the game doesn't gradually build up to that level of endurance, it gets there quite early on.
Getting the 100+% in this is for masochists and I won't be doing it, which is a shame as I've 100% every other Crash game except the first one.

Finished The Solitaire Conspiracy (PC, Steam)


Ok I'm going to put my hand up and say that I don't quite get the fuss for this.
It does what it says on the tin absolutely so I can't say I was deceived, but it is just solitaire at the end of the day.
Fancy solitaire but it's still just solitaire, so I'm not sure why it's getting quite a deal of aplomb right now.

Finished Werewolf The Apocalypse: Heart of the Forest (PC, Steam)


It's akin to the recent VtM VNs Coteries and Shadows of NY but it's not as good.
For one it's very very short at only about 3 hours, ends rather abruptly, and much of the first half is spent ruminating on the "mystery" of you the character. Well spoilers, you're a flipping werewolf duh, that's the mystery.

For two, as a WoD noob whose only exposure to the brand is the VtM games, this is my first foray into WtA.
The game introduced the concepts of this world (such as clans and tribes akin to what VtM has, background story of the WtA world and how werewolves fit into it) but didn't spend a lot of time on them, so I didn't get to really appreciate or get a sense of the WtA world the way that VtM games have allowed me to so far. This is just a bunch of werewolves in a forest.
 
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fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
4,513
10,409
113
Finished


Took me around 3.5 hours. It's a really pretty game with an interesting story at first and some decent music, but as a walking simulator, the story get's sadly quickly uninteresting, confusing, odd and feels sympathethic towards peadophilia which creeped me out a lot and the twist is just...weird. There's also very little stuff to interact with, so that was kinda boring.

Score: 6.5/10
 

Virtual Ruminant

Junior Member
May 21, 2020
121
248
43
Retired, then completed, then retired again Assassin's Creed Unity (Ubisoft, 2014). I bought this on a sale on Xbox for less than five Eurobucks. The Xbox recorded my first unlocked achievement for it in March 2018 and I just watched the end credits roll tonight - the game says my "completion" is still below 40%.

The worst and somehow also the most impressive Assassin's Creed game I played to date. I used to be quite a fan of the early series, but after the Ezio trilogy everything about it took a huge nosedive and so I've only been playing the games after getting them for super cheap and also very much on-and-off. But I'll keep playing them in order, so this is actually the latest Assassin's Creed game I've played. I might never catch up.

Pro:
  • The virtual 18th century Paris is a triumph of art direction and game-engine engineering. It's the one thing that brought me back to this game after taking huge breaks - it's just a joy to walk through the incredibly detailed streets, with their dynamic weather, day/night cycle, incredibly dense NPC population with just tons and tons of animations for not just men and women (no children this time around however, except for the young player character and a young main story NPC), but also birds, pets and lifestock, and an amazingly lifelike soundscape complete with period-accurate music to make the experience as convincing as possible. Again - I haven't played any AC games newer than this one, so the accomplishment here might have been surpassed - but to me it's still impressive on its own, and not just relative to its time, but today.
Con:
  • This was the first game to use the big update of the AnvilNext engine for the back-then-next-gen consoles Xbox One and PS4 and is just stuffed to the brim with systems for the enemy NPCs. And not a single one of them works properly. Instead, they all step on each other and conspire at every turn to ruin the player's experience with idiotic glitches.
  • After more than two consecutive hours of playtime, you can pretty much expect a hard crash to the dashboard at some point
  • Stealth is dead, thanks to the botched enemy NPC AI. The game designers must have realised this and tried to compensate with a bunch of weapon classes and tons of weapons you can buy and upgrade in them. It doesn't help, because
  • Combat is dead. While older Assassin's Creed titles aren't exactly blessed with intricate and fun combat systems, at least you can very much learn what buttons to mash to win. While you can do that here as well, it won't help once the enemy NPC aggro system goes haywire and sicks enemy NPCs at you like a pack of rabid dogs. Remember when critics used to make fun of enemies in Assassin's Creed waiting their turn for you to beat them up? Well, they won't in this one. And you won't survive. And chances are you won't be able to run away either because
  • Traversal is dead. You can tell the engine programmers tried really, really hard to make movement more flowing and not have player character Arno run into geometry dead-ends like Ezio used to pretty regularly (not to even mention poor Connor and Edward Kenway in AC 3 & Black Flag). As a result, Arno doesn't jump or leap, he floats. Any semblance of realism wrt to fall height, jump length etc. is completely gone. At some point the designers must have realised this and leaned into it by adding a superman leap animation where Arno just flies, arms stretched forward towards some balcony and grabs hold of it in complete defiance of physics and human anatomy. And none of this actually helps when trying to escape from aggro'd enemy NPCs. Just as in every other Assassin's Creed game, you can't run fast without your character also idiotically running up every wooden beam and lamppost you fail to avoid, only to end up hanging uselessly in place while getting shot with pistols and muskets.
  • The icon overload of the game map is taken to new heights of ridiculousness. Worse: Ubisoft tries to get you to buy collectible maps with actual money via micro-transactions. Six years after the initial release and all the shit it got for that, they still try. And it's not just the gratuitous collectibles either that become a problem: The game's single story DLC "Dead Kings" has its fast-travel enabled icon placed dangerously close to your main hideout location, so that inevitably at some point, you will launch the DLC while trying to go to your home base to collect money. And then the game makes you complete the 10-15 minute long first mission of that DLC before it will allow you to go back to the main game. Check these Google results to get an idea to how many people this exact thing happened. Apparently, play-testing also died during the production at some point.
  • The story mission design is terrible all around. There isn't a single good story mission in this game. Largely because apparently the engine programmers didn't give the mission designers ways to turn off all the broken enemy NPC systems and script interactions manually. Thus, every mission is a mess.

This is probably the worst game I ever "finished". The two things that had me coming back to it was the virtual Paris and morbid curiosity. If you want to see just how bad a game with a development team large enough to fill a 20 minute end-credits scroll can get, this is a great showcase. All while looking and sounding great.

1/5
 
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OP
Ge0force

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
2,335
7,296
113
Belgium
Retired AI War 2


This game gets very positive user reviews on Steam, but I guess it isn't for me. The tutorial has more text than any visual novels I've played, and after finishing it I still had no idea how to play this game. There's no campaign that introduces the player to the complex game mechanics step by step; you start with everything unlocked, with dozens of possible build and research options. The tooltips explaining every option contain huge amounts of text and stats, all packed together in the most unattractive way. My brain is way too small to comprehend all of this I'm afraid...

No score since I couldn't figure out how the game works ;)



Finished Gris


Gris is a wonderful piece of art. Every area looks like a beautiful painting, the story gives you goosebumps and the music goes straight to your heart. More explanation isn't necessary; just play this little gem. :)

Score: 9.2/10
 

bobnowhere

Careful Icarus
Sep 20, 2018
1,131
2,743
113
Retired Starcrawlers


It's the 2nd time I gave this game a chance, but it becomes SO boring and repetitive after a while. The concept is great, but the story has way too much boring discussions and the combat isn't that good. Every character has a unique buff system, which results in a lack of tactical combined attacks with multiple characters. You'lee be using the same attack combinations over and over again, so yeah, that gets boring really fast. The UI also isn't very good, you need to right-click enemies to see if they are buffed or debuffed. Characters you don't use in missions don't level up. And last not but least, you need to grind random generated missions to level up before playing the next story mission. Bleh...

Score: 5.0/10
Yeah, I played like 25+ hours of it and just gave up. It's not bad and the story missions were decent but the grind doesn't respect your time.

Finished Ratchet and Clank (PS4). (4.5/5) Great game, first R&C I've ever played. Might go looking for some more on PS3, I already own a sealed copy of A Crack in Time. Hey Sony, maybe some sort of backwards compatibility might be order?
 
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😳 MJnR 😳

Will kill for a Sleeping Dogs sequel
Mar 13, 2019
1,821
4,451
113
Finished some games since I last posted here, so will just leave a short quote for each:


One of the rare games that don't do anything badly, but doesn't really have great moments. It's just a solid game in every area. - 8 / 10

Solid Yu-Gi-Oh game that is brought down thanks to its Tag mechanic. The game's AI is too frustrating at times. - 7 / 10

Mediocre FPS with annoying difficulty spikes but one that features a somewhat interesting backstory and enemies. A launch title for PS3 that clearly shows it. - 6 / 10

A different take on Halo that doesn't do much and I really couldn't get into the characters. Has an amazing soundtrack. - 6.5 / 10

Awesome gameplay, underdeveloped but still interesting world and overall a great RPG. - 8.5 / 10

A solid game all around, especially when it comes to its visuals, but something with its gameplay just doesn't feel right as it should. The timeskips don't help the story feel less underdeveloped. - 8 / 10

Dragon's Dogma gameplay is great, the story is awful. The feeling of exploration is awesome, but most of the side-quests are awful. The thing is, there is no middle-ground with this game, it's either good or bad. Fortunately, its gameplay is so good that it manages to carry the game. - 7.5 / 10
 

fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
4,513
10,409
113
Finished


Game was far longer than I thought, expected 4-6 hours, but it was 8-10 hours long, I felt liked the pacing was off at times and it dragged itself a bit too much.. The gameplay is great, the level design is great, maybe a bit confusing at times and the graphics and music are great too. However you have no control over the camera which made the platforming parts and the combat annyoing at times. I also did not understand the upgrade system at all, so that's a shame. Howver, overall I liked the game

Score: 8/10.
 

FunnyJay

Powered by the Cloud
Apr 6, 2019
523
997
93
Sweden
Retired AI War 2
All the Arcen games are... Really weird.
I have long since decided they are not for me after having tried at least 3 of their games, AI War (incomprehensible), A Valley Without Wind (mish-mash of weird ideas that sounded fun but wasn't) and Bionic Dues (again ugly, devilishly hard and has weird humor).
 
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C-Dub

Makoto Niijima Fan Club President
Dec 23, 2018
1,006
3,032
113
33
Cardiff, Wales
www.playedthat.com
Pumpkin Jack (PC - GOG)
A wonderful ode to PS2 games. The game has a cheeky sense of humour and some fun platforming and action segments. It's not going to set the world on fire but as a fun and affordable Halloween-themed game, it was really fun. If you're in the mood for something spooky and silly, this is your game.

7/10

Vertigo Remastered (PC - Steam)
A fun single player VR shooter, Vertigo Remastered has come to a lot of the same conclusions as Valve did regarding doing a shooter in VR. From the weapons menu to a gimmick that overcomes some of the frustrating elements of VR (in Alyx's case, that was the gravity glove, in Vertico, it's in the form of a teleportation device that makes traversing the environment more convenient, while also being important in puzzles too).

The art-style is cartoony and fun, and the story has fascinated me. I want to know what happens next (and thankfully, Vertigo 2 is coming), but where it falls short is in polish and design. There are a few game-breaking moments where you can miss something and make decent progress, before reaching a point where you can't go any further. Sadly, it is also past the point of no return, so not even back tracking will help. I also feel the hit detection of some weapons needs work to make them feel more satisfying.

But other than that, it's a very good Half-Life-like. Whether as a pancake or VR game, there aren't many shooters like Vertigo anymore, and that's a damn shame. If you do enjoy the classic Half-Life games, have finished Alyx, and just want a little bit more, Vertigo Remastered is a good get.

8/10

Ikenfell (PC - Game Pass)
I am a sucker for witchy things, so as soon as I saw Ikenfell I was in. The game comes together really nicely, with the battle mechanic feeling satisfying and the game allowing itself to be challenging on the provision that players struggling can just skip extra tough or tiresome battles. This commitment to accessibility means it's an RPG for everyone, with a mostly satisfying story to boot.

Everyone's character arcs are good, and the personalities we get to explore the school with are fun, sad and interesting. There are a few instances where I felt that maybe, just maybe, the game needed a bit longer in the oven in terms of plot and characterisation, with everyone's concluding arc at the end feeling rushed. A shame, because the journey there is so awesome. But this is but a minor ding towards a legitimately good game that tells, for the most part, an excellent story, has great representation and is accessible to boot. While I played this game to completion on Game Pass, I will definitely be supporting the developer with a purchase at some point in the future - this game is absolutely worth it.

8/10