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  1. The very king of fighting games is back, and I'm head over heels with the little beauty. It looks and plays incredible. So much detail and so fluid in motion. I know I'll be posting in this thread in five years time, although tbf, probably as the avid spectator to online tournaments that I've been for 10 years by now. Truth is I've never been able to play the thing to any degree of competence, I just like watching other people do it. Having said that I've decided to do something I've never done when (trying) to play it. I'm going to go with grapplers. Maybe slowing things down a bit for myself might be more appropriate for my age - (advanced)!
  2. Minishoot' Adventures (I don't know why there's an apostrophe in the title) is a mashup of a 2D Zelda style game with a twin-stick shooter, and it's amazing. I played the demo during the recent Steam Nextfest, then bought it during the summer sale. The demo appears to be still available, and even at full price it's good value at under £13. The plot's about as light as you'd expect from this type of game, but it plays brilliantly. The movement and shooting feel great, exploring the maps for secrets is satisfying, and the abilities and upgrades to your ship as you progress are fun. I 100% completed the map, and beat the "true" boss in a bit over 13 hours. It's seems like it's only on Steam right now, but it absolutely ought to be on consoles. Here's hoping.
  3. So, this is the new game from the Civ and XCOM developers, Firaxis. Perhaps unsurprisingly then, it is a turn-based game. It's safe to say it's more closely aligned to XCOM than Civ though, but this has an ace (or many aces to be exact) up its sleeve that differentiates it from just being a Marvel XCOM game, and that's the largely divisive (from Previews) inclusion of Cards into the combat. As a result of the cards coming into play, the game isn't as rigid or locked into a grid like it is in XCOM, you're free to move somewhere within the little combat arena you're placed in once per turn, with certain placements being preferable, scoring knockbacks or environmental attacks. You can draw three cards per turn, but certain cards do get refunded as they're used up, giving you an additional card or two per turn, you can also redraw any card you're not happy with twice per turn. A lot of the cards so far are quite basic, in that they are 'standard' kind of slash/punch kind of moves, but they do come with additional benefits like knockbacks, chain attacks, inflicting bleed damage and the ilk, on top of these you've got ability cards which gives you and your team buffs as you fight and hero cards which are much more powerful and usually allow you to take out multiple enemies at a time, the kicker being that you need 'heroism' to use them, which is gained by taking out enemies. The enemies themselves have been fairly standard grunts for the most part, if you imagine the basic super soldiers from XCOM, then it's pretty much the same here, just they're now Hydra Soldiers. The bosses have been more interesting as they're now various Marvel villains instead of snake-creatures or something like they were in the XCOM titles. As established in the paragraphs above, the game shares a lot of DNA with XCOM, and that's no bad thing, the animations, certain effects you can pull of like the knockbacks mentioned earlier and the environmental attacks all look and feel very similar to XCOM but they've now got a more grandiose superhero sheen on them. You'll head out on missions from the 'war room' with yourself ('The Hunter') and two other heroes chosen at random to assist you. You'll about your task, fight a boss or retrieve an item at the end of it and then return back to your base. It's in this base segment of the game where you can see where Firaxis has been far more ambitious than their previous title. In XCOM, the base was an important part of the game where you'd build new sections, invest research points into them to help bolster certain specialisations, new weapons and all that good stuff. All of this DNA is contained within the 'Abbey' in this game, which is a huge Cathedral with sprawling grounds for you to explore to your hearts content, you explore this in 3D in your role as the Hunter, gone are the days of a 2D plain, seeing all your little soldiers move into their newly built wing. It's super impressive and such a great feeling 'base' right away that really makes you feel at home, all the segments you'd expect to be there are in their place but there's also tons of secrets to explore and a sprawling grounds containing blocked passageways which will likely reveal themselves to me later on. The Abbey has the feel of the School in Fire Emblem Three Houses or the Normandy in Mass Effect to it. This also takes inspiration from those titles in the new social links system, where you can sit down and hang out around the Abbey with your new team mates as you assimilate and get used to your new surroundings, doing so gets you friendship points which levels up your bond with your squad mates as the game goes on. I'm not too far into the game but I assume the more it goes on the more activities around the Abbey get unlocked and some of the more mysterious bits and pieces I've seen so far unveil themselves. The Abbey is the most ambitious element of the game and is almost a game unto itself, it makes me realise why it got delayed a few times. So yeah, I've loved my time with it so far (probably about 4-5 hours) and can't wait to play more, it's a real breath of fresh air compared to some of the other stuff I've played lately. To be continued and pics added.
  4. spatular

    Art of Rally

    So it's like a top down/isometric sort of rally game, with a nice basic/stylish graphics, it's great, the handling is spot on imo, it's on the realistic side but not as hard as dirt rally because of the wide tracks with lots of run off area (cut pretty much every corner), and there's a lot more scope for some nice power slides and opposite lock. its great fun. a trailer might explain it better: the leaderboards seemed to work at first but then seemed a bit broken, so hope that gets fixed, not that i have any friends on the epic store (think i'm 'spatular-' if anyone wants to add me). it's pc only at the moment but i guess it might come to consoles later. it's on steam for just under £20, well about £17.5 with initial discount, it's the same on the epic store but if you claim rocket league for free you get a £10 voucher so can get it for £7.5. might have been better getting it on steam for the leaderboards but don't regret my first epic purchase after getting control free with a graphics card and claiming 70+ free games on there. it's a bit hard to judge jumps because of the view but jumps are always difficult in rally games anyway. i'd like a normal chase cam and steering wheel support added, i recon it'd make great more-standard/not-top-down rally game too. these guys also did a game called absolute drift which is good fun - but also really hard to drift iirc - by default art of rally has steering assist on 100% i think, i haven't changed the default settings but am guessing turning that down makes it handle more like the old game. Anyone else going to give it a go?
  5. DANGERMAN

    Dishonored

    Played about an hour and haven't got any of the Bioshock style powers yet, but it's done a pretty good job of teaching you some of the basics. The tutorials are hidden as gameplay elements (follow someone, play hide and seek etc), but a little on the nose for a while, once things start to kick off though it does a better job of setting things up so that if you want to do a stealth kill then you'll get an easy chance, if you want to do a drop attack then there's a convenient pipe above a guard. Or you could just walk up and stab people, whatever annoyingly on the pc it's got the same quirk Witcher 2 did, that it's 2 handed attacks mapped to the opposite mouse button, so the sword in your right hand is mapped to the left mouse button, while the gun in your left... Not a big deal but I did alert a few guards by dropping down and shooting a guard in the head instead of a nice quiet throat slit
  6. radiofloyd

    Elden Ring

    Played an hour, on PC. The game defaulted to High graphical settings, so I left it at that. I chose the Vagabond class. So far, so Dark Souls. Looking forward to losing my life to this game. The opening cinematic is very cool. One of my Steam friends has already played this for 8 hours.:.
  7. FromSoft isn't messing around! Giant Mech✔️ Missile launcher✔️ Big gun✔️ Laser sword✔️ Jet propelled agility✔️ ..And go! This isn't Metroid however, this is your standard tool kit. Master it quickly. You get about the first couple minutes to introduce you to the controls. Then, you're on your own. Free to roam and battle as you wish. Your first objective has four markers, to be approached in any order. Naturally there is a lot of distance between each and From is quick to demonstrate that the enemies have the advantage. This is their base, you are the intruder. Be prepared to fight waves around any given corner. Some nice little Codec-like voices are your only warning the enemy has spotted you. The controls have come a long way since early AC's. After only an hour or so, I get what they were saying about taking what they've learned from Souls (more from Sekiro, really) and applying it to AC. Combat is fluid, reactionary and fast-paced. It all feels really intuitive, however. I imagine the first boss will be a rude awakening to any new to AC. I died a handful of times. But, this isn't Souls. This ain't no Vanguard either. I didn't defeat the boss by learning it's patterns, tells and counteracting them. No, I beat the boss by making the most of my own abilities. Your handler gives you one hint to dodge a specific attack. But it's more important than it seems. I mentioned Sekiro before, because you have the same meter system to the boss fights. Get the bar into the red with sustained damage and not only does this put the boss in a stunned state. But they take more damage too. Be careful that it does work both ways. Not to mention the cooldown to all your weapons and dodge/agility capabilities. This is all demonstrated in the first boss fight. When I "got it", I smashed the boss quite easily. I didn't get long to play today and likely even less time tomorrow. But just from the opening mission, I'm very impressed.
  8. This game came out in 2021, but I was unaware of it until the current steam sale. It's a lovely, chilled golf-puzzle game. Over a number of different themed worlds, you complete golf holes, earning more stars for completing in fewer shots. Working out how to do some of the holes in 2 or 3 shots to get the maximum star rating is actually quite fun. Some levels have a hidden secret hole/cube/other object to seek out and hit with your ball, which will unlock an alternate path on the map leading to extra stars or a special hole. Completing that hole will add an extra hidden collectible "blue things" to some of the holes on the map, which are used to unlock access to more challenging caverns which make use of the various features and gimmicks you've played with on that map. They can take a bit of figuring out, but are very satisfying. There are only a couple of barriers to progress requiring you to have earned a certain number of stars to pass, or the caverns mentioned above needing x number of the collectible things. The requirements aren't high, helping the game to feel pretty relaxed (the final cavern at the end of the game only needs slightly more than half the total number of collectibles). I got right to the end without engaging much with the secrets, then went back to the first 3 or 4 worlds and completed a bunch of them and had a great time doing it.
  9. So this has a demo out, presumably on every system, and it's relatively chunky at around 90 minutes to two hours. Turns out it's pretty neat and I actually bought it on a whim after the demo ended. One thing I noticed right away is that despite there being lots of discourse about it, most of it was so focused on its technical side that I never really knew what kind of game it actually is. So I was a bit surprised to find out that it's not a linear run & gun shooter, but more of a story-driven adventure with (very) slight Metroid elements, platforming sections, a couple of (easy) puzzles, a skill tree and some downtime sections where you talk to NPC. Not saying a straight up shooter would have been worse than this cocktail but the fact that there's more to do than just click on heads was a welcome surprise. I also really enjoyed its opening act – the story is a relatively trope-heavy YA mix of different things, but it's surprisingly engaging IMO. On the gameplay side, while it's not all shooting, the shooting part is still the meat of it, with every aspect of the skill tree boosting your combat prowess. As the Avatar Unforeseen, you can wield all four elements three magic types, which means you have the funky equivalents of a rifle, a shotgun and an SMG build into the gauntlet on your hand. Per magic type are three subtypes and there's a bunch of other stuff like Overdrive and more powerful spells filled by a mana gauge. It can feel a tad overwhelming at first but you'll soon learn to wield them properly, pick out snipers with blue magic (rifle), pull in supports to finish them off with the red magic (shotgun) and slow down brutes while pumping them full with green magic (SMG). I do want to point out though that it's a very static game in the sense that all the horsepower of the console is being used to make it look as pretty as possible. There are zero physic toys available here, the world is purely decorative. I'm not too bothered by this but it does feed into the discussion that hardware resources are being used for ultimately irrelevant things today. Speaking of, visually it's really stunning, as expected. I think there have been a few patches since release that increase the native resolution and make the upsampling a tad less aggressive. It does look sharp, but I'm only on 1080p, so hardly a high-end benchmark situation. But it also runs a but sluggishly at times and can only really hold the 60fps target in closed-off spaces. Which I think is the exact opposite at what it was at launch, when it was locked to 60 no matter the cost. Probably would have preferred that to be honest, but at the end of the day it's not a dealbreaker for me. But so far, so good. I wish the demo had come out a bit sooner, because I think it might have helped selling a few more copies and avoiding the unfortunate downsizing of the developer. Getting greeted by this when booting it up feels really bittersweet now:
  10. I don't know how to give impressions on this without getting in the weeds. In terms of features it's an old fashioned 2D fighting game. You have an arcade mode (which is kinda interesting in that the better you do the harder the end boss gets) and there is a story that is literally an anime that you just watch, which is what the last game did too but it's still wild to me. There's also a pretty intense Mission Mode that does it's best to teach you the deeper mechanics of the game which if you're the studious type could work pretty well. I could do with spending more time in it myself but getting wrecked by someone using my character then trying to rip them off in the next match is more fun for me. It's the good netcode that saves it though. Well, the matchmaking is pretty rough at the mo but it plays really well in game. It just means there's always people to play with. This came online at midnight and I was ready to play it so I went to the east coast of USA since it was a more sensible time there and while it was a little choppy visually my inputs were barely delayed, if at all. I really hope they put this in a DBFZ2, in fact it would be shocking if they didn't. I've not saved many fights yet since I think I'm still pretty scrubby but my Gio is coming along a little. And this fight with Zato was fun when I wasn't put in the corner with all his nonsense:
  11. I played 30 minutes of it. It asks you to create a bethesda account before even being able to play which is really annoying but you can get around by setting steam to offline. Anyway it seems good. Kind of more focused on just murder arenas from the look of things. But I'm totally ok with a game like that. You can turn HUD off but it's hard to play. The HUD is a bit much tbh, I need to spend some time figuring out what parts I can turn off. Playing on ultra violent
  12. I was pretty close to just bumping the old thread because man, is this Persona 3. I'm sure there are plenty that want a remake as faithful as this but I was more on the side of using the opportunity to take a second run at it and tighten it up a bit and improve some of the story of the game. There are quite a few changes to the dungeon crawling element, a lot of additions in presentation and mechanics such as the ability to pass a turn to another party member after hitting a weak spot which makes the game easier. But I was a bit disappointed with the AI party members since there are less tactics than the original and they don't use the new mechanics. Just for nostalgia's sake I tried to play it the old way but it's so not optimal. It just seems to be thoughtlessly added and it's clear they're really expecting people to play it with direct control of the party. I just always thought it was cool to be the leader of an autonomous group and it's just faster too. But oh well! Bosses haven't really been touched very much either, mechanically, despite those getting quite a bit better in later games is a big missed opportunity too. Other difference is it obviously looks better... actually, I dunno, it doesn't have the creepiness of the original to me, something to do with some of the colour grading maybe. Looking too clean isn't hitting quite right. More of the game is voice acted, I think it might be a little rewritten but I'd have to look at side by sides to be sure but it's mostly the same stuff happening and even acted out the same way. I'm not new to this game but I think to someone that is or is coming from Persona 5 it's still gonna feel like an older iteration despite the new coat of paint. It's still one of my favourite games, and I've barely stopped playing it but it's my fault, I did at one point dream of a game that felt like a sequel to P5 but with P3's story and it isn't that. It's P3 with some modern concessions.
  13. Nag

    Hi-Fi Rush

    Well this has turned out to be a very pleasant surprise... So let's get this out there straight the way, although this has strong rhythm elements you could (up till where I've played at least) get by with a bare minimum of rhythm... yeah you'll get damage perks and better scores but you can button mash your way through just as well. It looks lovely, very stylized with a look of Lollipop Chainsaw or Sunset Overdrive and for me pretty humorous too without going too far that way. Special mention must go to the soundtrack which so far has been pretty amazing, especially the original music and the way the whole stage seems in sync with the beat. There's a fairly decent amount of accessibility options too for people, who like me, have no rhythm whatsoever... so far so enjoyable and it's a game I probably never would've given a second thought to if not for my Game Pass sub... Great stuff.
  14. I'm probably over halfway through the game and, yeah, it's as good as the last game in most ways except in ways that doesn't make much sense to me. The story is still the main focus and it is as well performed as last time but it isn't as striking as before. That had a unique, almost theatrical one-woman show due to it existing mostly in Senua's head and memories where as here she is interacting with others. I do like that though since it's a good place to go after the first game being all about self actualisation and then seeing how she puts that into action around others. It just also means the scenes are a bit more conventional. Outside the story you wander around solving perspective based puzzles which feels easier this time around because I got stuck a bit on the last game but they do hide the optional lore poles (?) and hidden faces in the environment which tell stories too. I find those harder this time, I've missed so many. But it's the combat which is a problem. It has been simplified to the point where it's just block and hammer attack. There's no reason to use the heavy attacks really and they've made the parry have such a small window it's frustrating to use. I don't know why they made that harder but the rest so much easier. Fights are also one on one only so the spacing element from the original is completely gone. I don't know why the went in this direction, I am a bit baffled by it. No, it's not a combat focused game but they had a really nice compromise going with the original, and I don't think I'd heard of people dropping it, finding it too hard. It's just a bit disappointing that they've felt they had to address a problem that wasn't there. But the drama is good, how it incorporates mythology with coping with or explaining the affects of mental health is good so it's still entertaining but it's always gonna baffle me that they've removed any remotely interesting friction the original had.
  15. Quick thread to kick it off. I'm 2 chapters in, trying it on hard mode (you cant change after selecting, warning for that upfront). Beat a boss fight It's got some cool visual stylings, but it's a game I'm not sure I have calibrated correctly. It's extremely dark and grey, have went back and forth on what the intent is here. If I set the HDR brightness high it improves things but washes out many of the darker scenes. I think they really want you to play in pitch blackness. I don't want to dunk on the game too early in, it's one I was looking forward to. But I'm finding it a bit boring. It's got some interesting setup, very Twin Peaks. I guess even similar to season 3 in a sense, given the time gap. But I don't really feel like I'm investigating stuff, I'm just sort of running through mazes and corridors unlocking the next exposition dump, and a samey FMV jump scare happens now and then. Then you go into the 'mind palace' and stick photos on a wall by pressing A a lot. I read a review which says it gets off to a very slow start though, so maybe I'll turn around on it. I hope so anyway. By this point with Control though I was completely bought into it. This in comparison is feeling very standard, at least in these early hours
  16. illdog

    Yooka-Laylee

    Where to start. What it is. It is definitely an old school Rare esq 3D platformer. From the music to the grunty dialogue, the duo of characters and the cohorts you meet along the way, it's pertty much Banjo Kazooie 3 in all but name. It's good from what I played so far but I know it will annoy people due to being the above. You can scale a height of platforms only to find you can't progress. Certain characters won't talk to you yet untill you do something later to unlock their progression. Everyone talks alot and makes bad jokes. You can see things you can't get to as you need to learn a move that comes later on and I think this kind of thing will piss people off. I love this kind of game, i'm on board, I knew what it was and that's what i want so im cool with all that shit. What i'm not cool with is the shitty camera. It feels like they've brought that with them as part of the nostalgia. It's not game breakingly terrible by any means but, for example, the boss of world one is up a slope. He's chuckingshit down at you and you have to avoid it. For some reason they've loked the camera really low down so it's hard to judge when to jump. Also, the movement when you move up slopes using your slope run move is awful. It's realy fast and even when you press left or right you go up a little bit first. This is super fucking frustrating on his third attack pattern and I felt like I shouldn't be getting this pissed of with the game on the first boss. It can also be hard to judge where platforms or collectibles are a la Banjo or Mario 64. They slightly deeper in to the background or more in to the forefront than you sometimes expect - extra annoying if that is a misplaced jump that sends you falling to your death or back to the beginning of a climb. But but but, it's great platforming for the most part. The controls are slick, it's a beatiful colourful world and it's all very jolly. Littered with collectibles and tons of stuff to do, it seems certainly great value for your money. It's just weird I have the same beef with it that I did with the Nintendo 64's flagship game. I'm only a couple of hours in, watch this space I guess.
  17. OCH

    Final Fantasy V

    I find myself needing to take breaks from FF7 Rebirth. What better then to play the last of the Classic Era I am the least familiar with? I played this originally with the PSOne collection many years ago now. The newest playthrough is via the Pixel Remaster. So let's get this out of the way. The story isn't the main focus of this one. This is a "four chosen heroes gather to protect the elemental crystals that power the world". I'm already two and half hours in and the story has been on the lighter side, so far. As is the tone. This is almost at odds with FF4 and FF6 that start strong on the story front. You play as four characters almost from the very beginning. So there is no real "main one" to focus on. So what is the main focus of this one? Job Classes. This is basically the last game to refine the job system that debuted in FF1. Here's the gimmick though: You level up your job class and past a certain cap. Unlock a skill IE use of White Magic that you can retain when transferring to another job. For example, when the job classes are first unlocked. I set one character as a Monk IE the physical powerhouse. A couple levels in, you unlock "Barehanded". A skill the grants other job classes the physical strength of a Monk, when unarmed. Therefore, that character is now a Black Mage. Who when the skill is set also happens to be one of the strongest attackers in the party. This opens up a lot of variety to each build and character. Magic is also done a bit differently in this. You don't "learn" a single spell. You buy them from a Magic shop. Now levelling up White and Black Mages grants higher levels of proficiency. The initial unlocked skill grants use of Level 1 White/Black Magic EG Cure, Fire etc This goes upto level 6. So it pays to have one of two of your characters set long term as a Mage. Blue Magic also returns. Which is weirdly done. Because you don't influence enemy attacks in anyway. You just have to wait and see if the enemy has something you can learn. You don't even gain the "Learn" ability until Blue Mage lvl 3. This is the kind of grinding that I find really relaxing. Especially with the speed up battle option.
  18. About time for some impressions, I think. So its a 2D fighting game made by ArcSystem Works, a studio famous for its 'Anime' fighting games. They usually have a lot of systems and movement options as well as combo systems that can be extended to let players do some crazy stuff as long as they have the execution to do them, which is usually quite hard to do. They have made it simpler here. The first thing is its very easy to 'get in' in DBF since you have a button that activates the 'Dragon Dash' which has you fly across the screen and home into your opponent, and it also goes through most projectiles so for beginners fighting each other having that is useful for swiftly getting in. But it is very punishable, so learning when to use it properly is an early lesson. It has a few mechanics to aid beginners because I'm sure they recognise that this is a Dragon Ball game and a number of people playing it won't necessarily be into fighting games, they'll just be fans of the show so letting them have a good time is a priority here. One of the other ways they do this is by having auto-combos (performed by repeatedly pressing the light attack (LA) or medium attack (MA) for a more powerful variant that ends in a metre costing super). They're not a thing I'm fond of as they won't teach you the game that well but they do make for some cool looking action. The auto-combos, in fact, are totally unique combos. In a lot of other games, they are the same visually as manual combos but do less damage. And since they are unique here its a shame to see them locked into the auto-combos and not be able to do them manually. For example, Frieza, a character I use has a really cool looking move in the first part of his auto-combo which launched them into the air. So what I sometimes do to mix things up is perform the first half of the A-C then go into a manual one when in the air. But I wish I had the option to do this move anytime. But while there is a very flashy and basic fighter there is a high skill ceiling here as well, which you will discover at the time of writing when you go online. It isn't as high as ArcSystem's other games but there is still quirky stuff. Since this is a 3v3 fighter you can call in a member of your team to do a one-off move and jump out again. Using these can give you the ability to get hits in and continue combos where you couldn't without. Or they can be used to cover approaches, help defend etc. There is also the little mechanic also found in ArcSytem's other games; the jump cancel. Its something I've always known about but I've not really put serious time into learning but if you want to get beyond hammering out basic stuff you gotta get used to it. Essentially any medium attack can be jump cancelled. A common thing to do would be crouching MA (which puts them in the air a little), standing MA (pops them up a little more) then hit up while the animation is still happening to quickly meet them in the air. Since you can only use your proper launchers and Dragon Dash once per combo link it frees you up to use them later in the combo and its the mastery of this that really frees up the fighting system as a whole. It's here where it really gets fun. I've not really played the story yet but I hope to get round to it soon (it's kinda bonkers it's about the Dragon Ball gang being controlled by an entity and they turn to the camera when referencing this entity) and it also has this weird turn-based map system between fights. There's other stuff. Sparking Blast and how the online seems to be kinda borked at the moment in that the games run fine until it kicks you out of the lobby for no reason, but this will do for now.
  19. I played the first hour or so of this. The game has a very bombastic opening although I think it was largely shown when they first revealed the game. The opening “escape” sequence is snappy, much faster than the opening of DOS2. Dialogue scenes now play out Mass Effect style which gives the game a slightly more AAA feel. Character creation is pretty breezy, I didn’t spend too long on it. You can choose from five different penises. I just made my character a human fighter. My main takeaway is - no crashes or performances issues. Long may it continue. After a few more hours I should be able to comment more on the differences between this and Divinity, but so far so good.
  20. I've already played the start of the game a few times now, and with all the average press i was starting to get a bit down on this despite having been looking forward to it for ages. anyway so far i think it's a bit like the first game, awesome but flawed, maybe a bit of a missed opportunity to make it all amazing. i just did a level that i loved, the view was amazing, there was some nice running away from people, finding the right route up a tower, some nice jumping to find some hidden stuff, it was really great. combat is a bit of a mixed bag, jumping over something and smacking a dude in the face as you land and running off is great fun, but sometimes you have to stop and fight which is much less fun. the directional kicks so you can kick people into each other or off buildings is cool. other mixed stuff is the some of the side missions are too difficult imo - they need a 3 star rating like the timetrials to avoid frustration - i tried a delivery one and had to retry it maybe 20 times to finish it, you have to find alternate routes to complete it in the time as far as i could tell - this isn't really a bad thing but at the start of the game i just want to have a quick go to get 1 star or something then later go back to it to try and do better. there was a similarly annoying distraction mission that's basically impossible without many retries and finding shortcuts, again not really a bad thing if you know what youre getting into. i actually had a good sense of achievement and ended up enjoying these missions when i knew what i needed to do, but they were really frustrating at first. anyway i know to avoid them unless until i'm in the mood for that sort of thing now - i'll probably enjoy them after finishing the main missions. the main mirrors edge gameplay of parkouring about the place is still there and is generally great fun imo. it looks great, runs nice and smooth, well except for a bug i'm having on pc where the cutscenes stutter and the audio is completely out of sync. so there you go.
  21. A bit surprised this doesn't have a topic yet as I think the other games did have a few fans here. But then again I bought this on release and only now felt in the right mood to play it, so maybe it just came out at the wrong time. This immediately feels a lot more like 1 than 2, which is most likely a byproduct of it being made by Deck Nine (Before the Storm) who feel probably more comfortable reproducing what worked in the first place and a desire to, well, get back to what worked in the first place. Alex, the protagonist, is extremely approachable in an almost ironic way as she's a bit of introvert with a loaded background, so not unlike Max from the original. Setting the game in a small, rural area in some fictional part of an American mountain range gives it a very idyllic and soothing feel where standing around and rotating the camera is a joy in itself. A byproduct of this is that it also goes back to a fixed cast of NPCs with their own jobs, motivations, backgrounds and personalities. It is not without its faults – Alex' superpower is 'just there' and I find it baffling how the promo material spoiled this game's Aerith moment – but I felt right at home from the first minute. It's just a wonderfully cleansing experience, though it'll probably throw some existential angst in my direction soon (I'm only on chapter 2). One other thing I want to point out is that it looks phenomenal. The lighting, use of colours, the significantly improved facial animations all result in this not being the best-looking LiS title but a genuinely beautiful game even by other standards. It's also the first game in which I actually noticed Raytracing (which can be activated in Performance mode, too) when looking at the extremely realistic reflections on Alex' glasses. They look so good in fact that they almost clash with the slightly dreamy and soft art style. Playing this amidst the recent Square Enix news feels a bit bittersweet as well because I'm unfortunately not expecting them to finance another one of these anytime soon. So I'm definitely taking my time with it and enjoying the ride. Edit: Glasses
  22. one-armed dwarf

    Indika

    Maf refused to create the thread for the weird Russian nun game I put about 4 hours or so into it the other day, cause the description sounded pretty weird. Anyway it's sort of a third person narrative adventure with a focus on puzzle solving and platforming. It's set in a surreal realisation of 19th century Russia. You're playing a nun at this like Orthodox covenant, everyone hates you for some reason. It blends together a few styles, mainly the TP narrative thing mentioned but also 2D platformers, which indicates a split in the period of the narrative (the 2D bits are the main character's memories). The 3D sections is fairly standard block pushing type stuff, but also an interesting environmental manipulation gimmick involving prayers and shame, it's like the environment gets all DmC for a bit. There's a few strange things with the setting, a kind of steampunk thing going on and one section with unreasonably huge fish. It sort of straddles the line between feeling like this ironic sendup of... something but also using genre conventions from games and maybe some eastern european cinema to chat about guilt, religious conflict, sexual repression, v. standard stuff. It's alright, I expected it to be weirder tbh. Make sure to light up these Christ icons so you can get a high score and level up your Christian guilt skilltree (points are pointless)
  23. Maryokutai

    Elex II

    Played roughly five hours of this over the weekend. It's very similar to the first game to the point where I was thinking of just hijacking that other topic, but I'll play by the rules. When I say similar, I mean that you play as the same character, in the same world, meeting up with the same NPCs. It's been too long for me to remember if the world is actually 1:1 or rather some sort of "remake", but I think it's the latter. The story is a bit weird (alien invasion, protagonist gets infected, mumbo jumbo) and there's absolutely zero explanation as to why he has to start from scratch again in terms of skills and abilities, which I actually found very charming in an unapologetic 'I'm sequel to videogame!' kind of way. The biggest difference to 1 so far is that you don't start off as a walking paper cutout. Sure, most of the enemies can and will kill you, but against mutated rats and insects you actually stand a chance. I see this as neither a good nor a bad thing. It's obviously designed in a way to be more approachable and short-term rewarding, but I actually enjoyed the feeling of being at the absolute bottom of the food chain in Elex 1 and having to rely on Quest XP to level up or companions to do the dirty work for you. But I realise just as many if not more people will prefer being able to swing a pipe and do actual damage from the first hour onward. There's a couple of cool little details I noticed about NPCs. For one, they use that Uncharted system where, if someone in your party gets interrupted during dialogue because a combat encounter happens, they actually finish their lines later when everything has settled. There was also one cool moment where I saw two NPCs talking to each other and I pressed the button to talk to one of them. She then said I shouldn't interrupt her, finished her discussion, and then went back to me to scold me before the actual dialogue branch started. I've actually never seen that in an RPG, or any game for that matter. It also negatively influenced my standing with her, as there's some invisible relationship thing with major NPCs going on, too. Of course this being a certified eurojankTM game, you have to accept that it's not a looker, that combat is still very wonky, and the unusual unpolished aspects that come with it. But I'm really enjoying it so far, particularly as I've always liked PB's dual progression system with skill points and trainer perks. Makes the whole thing a bit more tangible as it bypasses the illogical construct of the classic RPG fundamentals. Not that this is an issue in other games, but it's a design idea I find very clever. Sidenote, this is also their first game that runs almost flawlessly on console. Performance mode on Series X only ever drops a few frames in very busy village settings, otherwise it's rock solid. Definitely not a game for everyone, but I think shiny and dwarf and some others might enjoy this. I'm not sure if I'd recommend playing both Elex games and I'm not far enough into this to say which one is better. So far this seems a bit more streamlined, but I've also read that the mid- to endgame is inferior to the original -- guess I'll see, but so far, so good.
  24. DANGERMAN

    Roller Drome

    Roller Drome seemed to get talked about a lot right before release, then no one mentioned it again. It's a CEL shaded roller skate arena game with similar muted colours to Sable. Presumably deliberately it reminds me of old 70s genre films. The concept is kind of Running Man, you enter arenas and have to shoot the house players. To reload you have to do tricks, this refills your ammo, killing enemies gets you health back,and there's a bunch of different enemy types. I wasn't feeling this originally, it just felt flat and boring, frustrating even. Movement can be a bit odd, you don't control your momentum, press forward to start then leave it, concentrate on steering, jumping and tricks. Get close enough and there's an auto aim to shots, with some of the weapons having slight tricks to them. There's a dodge, time this with the slow down time mechanic, usually used for aiming, and you get an extended period of slowed time. There's challenges to the levels, things like performing certain tricks, kill enemies with certain weapons, and I think it's this stuff that was annoying me. It's probably best to just beat a level then revisit it and try to get one or two challenges each time, that's not how I was approaching it. You need to beat a certain number of challenges to unlock the next set of levels, so I was trying to beat everything all at once, you just don't have that sort of control early on, or I didn't, I did much better when I came back after a break and went back to the earlier levels. I'm still not sure I see the really high scores for it, but when it does all click with you it is fun, really fun at points
  25. AndyKurosaki

    Fallout 76

    I got this as a rental yesterday,took about 8 hours to update the damn thing. And there’s more updates on the way already. I’ve only played a couple of hours,so can’t really judge it yet. But the lack of NPCs really is an absolutely stupid decision. Elder Scrolls Online managed it fine,so I don’t get why they went that way with this. I only saw one actual player, who tried to kill me,but as I didn’t shoot back he couldn’t do F all. I was busy getting past the tutorial that I didn’t interact with him,so he got bored and left me to it. Oh,and Bethesda’s reaction to people pissed off about the poor quality bag in the Power Armour Edition is gobsmacking. “We made it out of cheap material,as we couldn’t afford what we advertised. Here,have 500 atoms. That gets you pretty much sod all”. They’re really trying to piss all their goodwill up the wall.
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