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Enigmatic_Oddity
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08 Jan 2019, 7:58 am

I've been playing Celeste. I can't believe how good it is, it is so much better than I expected. It's brilliantly designed in every regard, from its merging of narrative and gameplay, its relatable characters, to its tight controls and moveset, to the excellent and well tuned level design, and gorgeous soundtrack. I want to play it a lot more, but I don't think it's too early for me to consider it my favorite game I've played from 2018.



caffeinekid
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08 Jan 2019, 3:07 pm

I've recently been playing a lot of Diablo III on the Xbox 360 (even though I have a sealed copy of it for PS4 too).

I managed to get through the campaign (all 5 chapters including the Reaper of Souls) and am still having fun going on bounties and seeing If I can get a nice set of level 70 legendary armour and weapons.


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Bradleigh
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10 Jan 2019, 10:28 am

Just go through the main story of Celeste, looks like it took me a good 9 hours over two days, with 1911 deaths. Deaths in a game are not usually something one should brag about, but fairly early in the game it says something interesting to the player, that they should be proud for their death count, because it is kind of evidence of learning, and set up an interesting running theme for the game. A game that pretty much forces you to die over and over again, can often be called sadistic, with maybe the player called masochistic for trying, but a good version should flip that on its head. Sure there can be stress, but a victory can mean so much.

I don't consider it much of a spoiler because it kind of explains itself fairly early on, but the journey to climb the mountain is an act of self conquest of someone who suffers from things like anxiety and depression, things I face too due to my ASD. I think that the game does a pretty fantastic job of putting the struggle of things like self doubt, and coming out of it in a healthy way. Quite enjoyed it, and wonder if it has given me a different perspective on dealing with stressful tasks.


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UncannyDanny
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10 Jan 2019, 10:30 am

Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright (Revelation route) :D


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SabbraCadabra
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11 Jan 2019, 6:02 am

I beat Super Mario Land 2 the other day, now I'm kind of jumping around a bit...was playing Link's Awakening, but yesterday I was playing Dragon Warrior III, and today I will play Dragon Quest IX (mostly just grinding).


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11 Jan 2019, 6:38 am

Google Quick Draw, I find it addictive.



Ms.Berg
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15 Jan 2019, 2:41 pm

Syberia 3... Yes I like it and it also holds some special sentimental meaning to me.


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sleepyestes
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15 Jan 2019, 10:15 pm

I've been obsessively playing through the Danganronpa games. Monokuma is probably my favourite videogame character now!



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16 Jan 2019, 8:45 am

Still playing Elite Dangerous, have just started deep core mining and i'm already loaded with credits. Had barely finished outfitted by Python before i bought an Anaconda cruiser.

I go through icefields quite fast, before the probes have scanned the asteroids i already know the answer (takes 2 seconds if you have eyes) and by then i'm already lined up for my next destination, so when the computer says "asteroid scan complete" i've already hit the afterburner. Making 25-50 million per run, i can make more if i jump out of the system and sell at another station.

Lots of players, like 10000+ have gone on a second joint community expedition (Distant Worlds 2) through the center of the galaxy to the outer arm on the other side, i guess maybe 20% of them will finish heading out to Beagle Point (65000 lightyears) on the opposite side of the galaxy, then they will head home taking the route of USS Voyager (nerds :D) back to Sol. During their journey they will pass cool stuff like the Lagoon nebula and Sagitarus A (i'll go there myself some day).

30 ships in the expedition have already gone boom after they tried to take selfies near a planet with high gravity :roll:


I've explored the California nebula, the Coalsack (not much to see), Orion Nebula, Witch Head nebula (where i found a science center), the Pleiades (where there is a mission you can take) and larger stars like Betlegeuse. Bought myself an exploration ship for the purpose of long distance and i'm working on having it modified to i can make longer jumps than 37 lightyears.

I had forgotten how much i liked Elite/Frontier, and i hate myself for just having bought the game in 2015 or 2016 and just kept it in my collection. On the other hand i was in a severe depression.


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Enigmatic_Oddity
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16 Jan 2019, 9:16 am

Elite: Dangerous has been my game of choice for VR and it is probably the VR game that had me most engaged in VR prior to its entry into the consumer market. I have about 800 hours logged and I've never played it in flatscreen; it's hard to even imagine playing it like that now. It's just fun to fly and take in the sights, nevermind the gameplay which admittedly is a bit lacklustre.

As for Celeste, I already reached the summit some time ago and have been completing the B-sides and trying to get the last few strawberries. Not quite done with getting through the Core level though. I think I had about 1200 deaths by the summit and I've easily doubled that just doing the first few B-sides.



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16 Jan 2019, 4:20 pm

The Painscreek Killings

It's good so far. It's one of those walking simulators with no other people in it. Just a space to be explored and interwoven narratives to be unraveled as you use clues and tools to open it all up.



Enigmatic_Oddity
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18 Jan 2019, 12:14 am

Finally got around to completing Dragon Quest XI, a game I had half completed for some time. Finishing my playthrough didn't really change my opinion of the game as a whole from my starting experience; it's a really pretty, polished game that a lot of people have clearly put a lot of effort and care into.

But the gameplay was mediocre even by the series own standards, with the main issue being a complete lack of any difficulty. It was enjoyable, but it tried my patience with way too high a cutscene/dialogue to gameplay ratio, with long stretches of the game being walk from point A to point B to trigger the next cutscene. And the amount of backtracking in the second half of the game really killed it for me, feeling like a waste and a way to pad out playtime. It just served to remind me of games with similar scenarios that did it better (FFVI and Chrono Trigger).



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19 Jan 2019, 4:01 pm

Enigmatic_Oddity wrote:
Finally got around to completing Dragon Quest XI, a game I had half completed for some time. Finishing my playthrough didn't really change my opinion of the game as a whole from my starting experience; it's a really pretty, polished game that a lot of people have clearly put a lot of effort and care into.

But the gameplay was mediocre even by the series own standards, with the main issue being a complete lack of any difficulty. It was enjoyable, but it tried my patience with way too high a cutscene/dialogue to gameplay ratio, with long stretches of the game being walk from point A to point B to trigger the next cutscene. And the amount of backtracking in the second half of the game really killed it for me, feeling like a waste and a way to pad out playtime. It just served to remind me of games with similar scenarios that did it better (FFVI and Chrono Trigger).



This is exactly why I don't do JRPGs: They're so braindead easy. Even back in the day, they were often STILL very easy. I still remember playing through FFVI, and being bored out of my mind through most of it. Particularly the earlier parts... for quite awhile (not like it's just one dungeon) any fight can be won by just using the autocrossbow exactly once. I would often go through entire dungeons thinking "why is this place even here? What's the point when I barely have to do anything other than push the win button to beat all these monsters?" And the whole game was kinda like that, to a degree. There was zero challenge or strategy for the most part. You typically just hit the attack command a lot or repeatedly cast high-damage spells (didn't really matter which) and healed when specifically necessary. Which was in stark contrast to the very first FF game, which would murder you without hesitation even in non-boss fights. Now to be fair, my idea of "difficulty" is a little warped, but still.

And the JRPG genre has just gotten outright worse about that lack of challenge over time. It's the story focus that does it. Players that don't get to see the whole story make for unhappy customers (even if it's their specific lack of skill making that happen), and unhappy customers do not buy the next installments in whatever series irked them. Publishers wont take risks like that anymore, even in other genres, but the JRPG genre seems to be the absolute worst for it. There have been exceptions over the years, but basically *all* of them have been from Atlus. Hell, I remember how Atlus's games often had to have specific sections designed to show the player that it wasn't going to be the usual braindead experience. Like in Nocturne, there's the infamous fight against the Matador. It's often seen to be very hard... but in reality it's a "wake-up fight", designed specifically to show the player that the usual JRPG "strategy" of just "do lots of damage all the time and you're guaranteed to win" simply isn't going to work in that game (and indeed, it did not work in that game, or the entire series). Most games don't really need a "Hey, no, this IS going to actually require some effort and thinking, so get out of those old habits" boss put in them, but that's how that genre got by that point. And players had gotten so sucked into those habits that many got outright stuck on the Matador, and would never actually get by him. And that was on the PS2.


Forgot where else I was going with this. If I was going anywhere at all.



Enigmatic_Oddity
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19 Jan 2019, 6:41 pm

Yeah, I also couldn't help but keep comparing DQXI to the last JRPG I played, which was Atlus's Persona 5. Not only did that game have multiple difficulty levels, which at hard offered a decent challenge, but there was tons more gameplay in any given part of the game. A dungeon in P5 took hours, whereas in DQXI it often took ten minutes of simply running past every enemy straight to the boss. Also, dialogue in P5 was often part of the gameplay due to the need to build social links, as opposed to completely non interactive cutscenes. I'd agree that SMT is the only long running series that still offers a good challenge and hasn't felt the need to stuff its playtime with non interactive sections.

I'd say that though the genre has always been easy in general, at least compared to western RPGs like Infinity engine styled games, it's only become worse and more tedious in modern times because tutorials have become absurdly long (ie. FFXIII where the tutorial is about done by the time you get to the end of the game), everything takes longer to do - be it cutscenes taking the place of what would have been simple text boxes, or overly long battle animations, and an unwillingness to innovate.

That last point especially becomes an issue for DQXI, because though it features the ability to avoid enemy encounters and makes it extremely easy to do so, it does nothing to change the balance of the battle system to accommodate that change. Part of what made a last boss of a dungeon difficult in these types of games wasn't the boss encounter itself, but the resource management prior to the boss so that you reached it healed up with a decent MP pool and enough consumables, plus there was the stress of possibly losing all progress made in the dungeon from your last save, which might have included several levels of experience. When you make it so that you can effortlessly run straight to the boss without encountering anything on the way from a save point, with full MP and a vendor selling any consumable you'd need, and continue to balance the difficulty of encounters as you would previously, it makes every encounter easier than what is intended, because you can use everything at your disposal without having to worry about resource management.



Skilpadde
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20 Jan 2019, 12:02 pm

Bomberman Tournament (GBA)

It's a fun take on the Bomberman series


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