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Busta Nut | Heroic Posting Riot
 
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Put in over 80 hours into Three Houses over the last week and a half.

Still need to finish Fallout 2 (finished 1 a month ago when my internet was out), but I've got my anime game to complete beforehand. 2 is definitely far more interesting and enjoyable though, tbh.

Got Skyward Sword for Switch on my birthday, but considering I was 90% done with it on Wii before my brother trashed the system, it's on the lower list of priorities.

Still stuck on the Sand Pharoah on Luigi's Mansion 3, but I've only just thought of that NOW.

Kinda wanna do another playthrough of Wind Waker and New Vegas as well.

Still need to buy Infinite.
Last Edit: January 04, 2022, 01:05:55 PM by Busta Nut


 
Verbatim
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Every game I beat this past January + some rambling and unconcise thoughts on them:

Metroid Dread (2021) for the Nintendo Switch - 9/10
: This was just about everything I wanted it to be. I've always loved the Metroid games—Super Metroid remains my favorite game of all time—but for not getting a proper 2D Metroid game in almost two decades, and for passing development over to MercurySteam, the people who made those dumbass Castlevania: Lords of Shadow games, this truly exceeded my expectations. The simple act of moving around in this game feels better than, without exaggerating, probably any other game that I've played. I honestly can't think of anything else that feels this satisfying, this buttery smooth. They also totally nailed the atmosphere, and I found myself thoroughly engaged with the storyline as well. The ending was fucking awesome. To be honest, I don't even care about Metroid Prime 4 anymore—this was really what I wanted all along. The only thing I found myself somewhat disappointed with was the music. It's not bad by any means, but none of the tracks really stuck out to me. Previous Metroid games found a way to make ambient music stick with you forever—but I don't think they really pulled that off here. It's a fairly minor issue in the grand scheme of things, but music is a pretty important aspect to me, so I think it's worth bringing up. Regardless, this is the best game I've played since Breath of the Wild, and I fully endorse it.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (1991) via Nintendo Switch Online's SNES app - 9/10
: Super Metroid is my favorite singular game, but The Legend of Zelda is my favorite series. A Link to the Past is a game I played all the time as a kid, so if I'm such a big fan, you might be surprised to learn that I haven't already beaten this one. The truth is, I mostly played Zelda games back then not necessarily to beat them, but just to dick around in their massive worlds. The amount of little surprises there are to uncover in this game, even if you're not making any forward progression, is actually pretty immense for a game of this era. If I ever did wander off into a dungeon, I'd usually pass the controller to my dad after getting beaten up by the boss, and he's take care of it for me—so, this was my first playthrough of this game without getting any help. Suffice to say, I think it holds up pretty fucking well. The miniscule ways in which the game could be said to have "aged" ultimately don't factor into the game's overall quality, as far as I'm concerned. It's still one of the best games ever created, and I challenge you to find a better game made in 1991.

Sin and Punishment (2000) via Nintendo Switch Online's N64 app - 8/10
: I've been on somewhat of a rail shooter kick lately, and I think this one's probably the best of the bunch that I've finished. It's one of those games that never got a physical release stateside, but managed to get a spike in popularity and interest thanks to being referenced in Super Smash Bros. After Brawl came out, the game was added to the Wii's Virtual Console service, so people outside of Japan could play it for the first time—it, along with Chrono Trigger, happens to be the last game I bought on that service before they shut it down a few years ago... and then they went and added it for free to the N64 service... resulting in $10 down the drain for me. Oh well. The game itself is pretty awesome, but there's not much to say about the gameplay. It's pretty much just nonstop shooty action on top of some really cool set-pieces. For being made up of shitty polygons, it's pretty stylized, and it's probably one of the best-looking N64 games. The setting and story, which I had trouble making complete sense of, did give me some major Evangelion vibes, as well, which I thought was pretty cool. Overall, I thought it was a gas. I wouldn't be surprised if it ended up being in my top 10 games for the system.

Banjo-Kazooie (1998) via Nintendo Switch Online's N64 app - 7/10
: One of those games I never played as a child, even though I probably should have. For a long time, I've had it in my head that collect-a-thons are stupid, because what could possibly be fun about going around a big world and just collecting random junk that doesn't do anything tangibly useful for you? Maybe it's because I was raised on Zelda and Metroid, where pretty much everything you pick up is immediately useful, that I had this prejudice—and in my defense, there are definitely some collect-a-thons out there that make the act of collecting things extremely boring—but I'm pleased to report that I don't think Banjo-Kazooie is one of them. Well, for the most part. I hate having to collect 100 musical notes per level, because that really is just an arbitrary and tedious task, but collecting jigsaw pieces is a lot more fun because of how creative they get with their hiding places. I've always said that the best games should be about getting you to appreciate the journey apart from the destination, and surprisingly, I think Banjo-Kazooie fits the bill on that. I do have some major issues with the game—collecting musical notes sucks (especially considering you have to re-collect them upon death), the controls aren't the best, and the final boss was super janky and way more frustrating than it needed to be. That said, I still enjoyed the game overall, and I regret not playing it as a child. I'm sure I would've loved it, with its Saturday morning cartoon energy and incredibly juvenile sense of humor.

Panzer Dragoon (1995) for the Sega Saturn - 7/10
: Played this for my '95 project, primarily. Classic rail shooter. Cool dragons. Cool setting. Awesome music. Lots of fun. Simple stuff.

Bug Fables: The Everlasting Sapling (2019) for the Nintendo Switch - 7/10
: Since Nintendo has shown zero interest in returning the Paper Mario series to its story-heavy turn-based RPG roots, an indie Panamanian developer took it upon themselves to make their own Paper Mario-esque game—but this time, with a slightly darker and more mature story and a greater emphasis on challenging, complex combat. It's neat! I found myself drowned by the number of boring fetch quests the game throws at you, though, and the story doesn't really pick up until the fifth chapter or so. It's also very, very similar to Paper Mario—which is the point, I get it—but I mean that it's similar in ways that it didn't necessarily need to be, if that makes sense. I think it struggles to find its own voice, at times, but it was still fairly enjoyable. I'd play a sequel, if they ever made one.

Zelda II: The Adventure of Link (1987) via Nintendo Switch Online's NES service - 4/5
: The "black sheep" of the Zelda franchise—or as I like to call it, the ultimate casual filter. Lots of people hate this game, but lots of people are dumb. This game is great. I've technically already finished it, but similar to A Link to the Past, I had lots of help from Internet guides as well as my dad. This was the first time I beat the game without anyone's help, and it was a blast. It's definitely flawed, though—I think if there's any game in the series that deserves a remake of some kind, it's this one.

Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker (2018) for the Nintendo Switch - 7/10
: Cute and creative little puzzle game. You're essentially just going from point A to point B in a small 3D environment, but you can't jump, so you have to use your wits to figure out how to reach every goal. With a few exceptions, no two levels are similar; they're always throwing new ideas at you. Not too challenging, though. The camera rotates the world instead of orbiting around Toad, allowing you to observe each level from their every angle, revealing things that would otherwise be hidden if the camera was locked over Toad's shoulders. It almost gives the impression of rotating a physical object, like a Rubik's cube, which was definitely an interesting sensation that a game has never made me feel before.

Castlevania: Dracula X (1995) via the Castlevania Advance Collection for the Nintendo Switch - 6/10
: Butchered port of Castlevania: Rondo of Blood. It provides a base level of Castlevania fun, but nothing more. This version of the game was said to have the hardest iteration of Dracula in the series, and I agree with that assessment—but it's not necessarily a fair or fun fight.

Bug! (1995) for the Sega Saturn - 4/10
: Just one of those stupid failed mascot platformers of the '90s. My uncle had a Sega Saturn, and he let me play a handful of games on it—this being one of them. I liked it as a kid, and I've always wanted to beat it, but having done so has only made me completely turn my back on this game. It's an utterly miserable experience, partly because it's one of the hardest games I've ever played in my life, but mostly because it's just super shitty and unfair. It gets points for being a 3D platformer before Super Mario 64 came out, which I think earns it a respectful nod... but yeah, I just get sad when I think about this game now. I wish I had the patience to beat it as a kid, so I wouldn't have felt the need to beat it as an adult.

Currently playing:
- Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
- Rayman
- Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels
- Pokémon Legends: Arceus (once it gets delivered)
Last Edit: February 01, 2022, 04:54:11 AM by Verbatim


big dog | Mythic Inconceivable!
 
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I love you, son.
Recent completions:
Cyberpunk 2077 (Second Playthrough) - A (A+ if not for the poor launch state)
Spider-Man - B-
Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart - B+
Halo Infinite - C
The Last of Us - C-

Currently playing through TLOU2 and Ghost of Tsushima.


MarKhan | Legendary Invincible!
 
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Let's see...

Sengoku Rance - SSS Supreme Sex Strategy
Evertale - SSm Shit Slot machine

Cytus & Cytus 2 - reason why I bought new phone
Last Edit: February 06, 2022, 04:01:26 PM by MarKhan


 
Verbatim
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games i beat this past february with more concise thoughts this time

Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels (1986) - 3/5
Super Mario Bros. 2 (1988) - 4/5
Super Mario Bros. 3 (1988) - 5/5

Decided to finally beat a few Mario games that I never could as a child, because I was very bad at them. I'll forgive myself for never having beaten The Lost Levels—it didn't give me as hard of a time as Bug! did, but I'd still probably call it the second hardest game I've ever beaten. It tested me like no other Mario game has, but at the cost of its fun factor, hence the lower rating. Unless you have a masochistic fascination with hard platformers, would not recommend.

Mario 2 is the game we got when Japan decided Lost Levels was too hard for us stupid Americans, and in what is probably the most well-known piece of Mario trivia ever, the game is actually a reskin of a Famicom game called Doki Doki Panic—so, if you've ever found yourself thinking that this game is weird, or doesn't feel like a real Mario game, then you were right to feel that way, because it technically isn't a real Mario game. That doesn't make it any less fun, though.

The series comes to its first crescendo with Mario 3. Arguably the single best NES game—though I prefer Castlevania—the game's one major flaw, from what I can tell, is that it doesn't save your progress, instead demanding you to beat the entire game in one sitting. They had the technology by 1988, but the option to take a break wouldn't be given to us until Super Mario World a couple years later, which is part of why I prefer that game when it comes to the Mario series.

With these three games finished, I've beaten every major Mario game released in the '80s and '90s. The next one I'd have to play, were I to continue, would be Super Mario Sunshine, for which I've heard a lot of mixed opinions.

Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (1997) - 8/10

My tour through the Castlevania franchise has finally led me to the original Metroidvania itself—and thankfully, I did find myself rather pleased with it. I don't think the game holds a candle to Super Metroid, but that's my favorite game of all time, so I wasn't really expecting it to. Dracula's castle is huge, absurdly detailed, and fun to explore, and the process of regaining all your lost powers feels rewarding. And my god, if it doesn't have one of the best OSTs ever. The game's easiness, especially when compared to the "Classicvanias," could be seen as a sticking point against the game if that sort of thing really bothers you, but I'm more personally more bothered by the idea that this Metroidvania style would go on to swallow the entire identity of Castlevania. It's a fun style and all, but I do wish we could get another game in the traditional style again.

Limbo (2010) - 8/10
Inside (2018) - 8/10
Gris (2018) - 8/10

Lumping these three together, because they're all more or less in the same vein—all three games are simplistic but exquisitely artful platformers by independent studios exploring various flavors of melancholy through wordless, and oftentimes ambiguous, storytelling—but, of course, they're not without their differences. Limbo and Inside are physics-based platformers with a very dark and nihilistic atmosphere, whereas Gris is a lot more vivacious and hopeful in comparison. You will die several gruesome, bloody deaths in Limbo and Inside; in Gris, you can't die at all.

I have a whole bunch of thoughts on all three of these games, but I'm trying my best to not get carried away—so you should just play them if you haven't already, and if they look remotely interesting to you. Between these three, I'd say my favorite would be Gris, but it's very close, and I could change my mind tomorrow.

Shantae (2002) - 8/10

I've had my eye on this game for the longest time, as well, but never found an excuse to play it—so I jumped into this one on impulse. Although Shantae is often considered to be an indie franchise, the first game in the series was published by Capcom and debuted on the Game Boy Color—which, as far as I'm concerned, means that it shouldn't be considered an indie franchise.

Anyway, this game is great. It's probably the single best-looking game on the GBC. Between the excellent color palette, absurdly detailed backgrounds, and delightful animations, it almost feels like this game shouldn't even be possible. The gameplay itself is like a more tolerable Castlevania II: Simon's Quest, going through a big side-scrolling world, visiting towns, buying items, and even day-to-night transitions where enemies to get stronger at night. Shantae herself is a pretty charming and creative character with a lovely design—a pretty good and rare example of a positive sexy-but-unsexualized female lead character from a video game that's 20+ years old. I wonder why nobody brings her up?

Final Fantasy (1987) - 4/5

I want to play Final Fantasy VII, but I want to play all the games leading up to it first—so, my journey begins here. I've played the original Dragon Quest, so when I start up a JRPG as ancient as this, I pretty much already know what I'm getting into. For its time, I think the original Final Fantasy is pretty great. Being able to customize a full party of four, rather than be stuck with just one character like in Dragon Quest, was a great concept, and I think ti was executed about as well as they could have back then. Very little of what I disliked about the game had anything to do with its age—there are several things they could've done better, even at the time, like fixing all the bugged black magic spells, or decreasing the encounter rate by just a little bit. Many people would probably balk at the thought of ever playing this game, and I don't necessarily blame them, but I definitely don't regret starting here, and I'm excited to play Final Fantasy II once I'm ready for it.

Pokémon Legends: Arceus (2022) - 6/10

People seem to be really enjoying this game, and that's great. Personally, this is the most I've ever regretted a video game purchase since I bought Ultra Sun (or was it Ultra Moon? Jesus, I don't even fucking remember). I really don't get what people think is so special about this game. It's ugly, it's boring, the story is hot garbage, there's hardly any battling, and even if there wasn't, the battle system has been completely gutted. I realize they're just trying to put more focus on the catching aspect, and that's fine—but I don't understand why that means everything else has to suffer. Plus, is catching Pokémon really that fun to people, enough to be a fulfilling $60 experience? Apparently so, because a lot of people have declared this to be the single best Pokémon game in the whole fucking series. I honestly can't wrap my head around that.

Currently playing the original Resident Evil... slowly. I'm not too good with horror, but I'm trying to fix that.


Ian | Mythic Inconceivable!
 
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Signature goes here.
Oh no no no....

and I'm excited to play Final Fantasy II once I'm ready for it.


 
Verbatim
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trying to have a semblance of a life lately, so i didn't get to finish as many games as i wanted to this month.
here's what i did play:

Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake (1990) - 5/5
: Played the version featured on the Legacy Collection for PS3. After beating the original Metal Gear several years ago, thinking it was pretty great for its age, but somewhat frustrating to play nowadays, there was a long period of hesitation before I moved onto its sequel. In order to get into the more celebrated Metal Gear Solid games, I knew I had to play MG2 first—but I hesitated for a long time, because I wasn't sure if I really wanted to play another janky 8-bit stealth game. As it turns out, I definitely should've played this game years ago, and there was no reason to have any trepidation. Even putting the gameplay improvements aside, it's hard to think of an action game from 1990 or earlier that has a storyline this intricate and detailed. I mean, it's definitely not Shakespeare—Kojima's goofy sense of humor and regrettable portrayals of female characters have apparently plagued his writing from the very beginning—but in an era where most games at the time were still just about rescuing princesses, fighting off alien invasions, or stopping some random evil fuck from destroying the world for no real reason, it must have been really cool and refreshing to see a game trying to tell a more nuanced story. In any case, with this game under my belt, I've finally opened the doors to MGS1. I've never been more excited to play it.

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening (1993) - 5/5
: I played the DX version of this, which adds color and a new dungeon—otherwise, it's basically identical. After beating A Link to the Past in January, I decided it would be cool to fill all the gaps in my Zelda repertoire, starting with all the oldest games I haven't beaten yet, and Link's Awakening for the Game Boy just happened to be the next one. For Game Boy standards, it's pretty great, and arguably the best game for the system. Also one of the stronger and more emotional storylines in the series, too. The graphics and gameplay combine the charming simplicity of the original NES game and the crispy goodness of the SNES game. The only problem is that there's a new-ish remake of the game out for the Switch. I haven't played it myself, but I have a friend who has, and he thinks the game completely replaces the original—which I think is rather unfortunate. I hate it when remakes do that, honestly.

Resident Evil (1996) - 7/10
: Played the Director's Cut edition featured on the PlayStation Classic, which retains the original soundtrack while keeping the other expanded features intact (such as auto-aiming). This is only the second horror game I've ever played in my life, my first being 1995's D for the Sega Saturn. I grew up hating the idea of horror movies and horror games—I thought the entire concept of scaring yourself for entertainment purposes was extremely stupid and foolish. Now that I'm much older, I've decided to open my heart towards the genre more than I ever have in the past by actually dipping my toes into some classic horror stuff, just to see if I'd actually end up liking it—and as it happens, the answer is yes. Resident Evil is pretty cool. Did it scare me? Not really—but the game's atmosphere did manage to creep me out a bit, always leaving lingering sense of terror even hours after a finished session. The things people warned me about—the "ugly" pre-rendered backgrounds, awkward tank controls and gunplay, and fixed camera angles—actually wound up being my favorite aspects of the game. I played a lot of Jade Cocoon as a kid, which is a game that apes a lot of that stuff, so I guess you could say I had "training"—but even then, I just find that kind of stuff very interesting and unique, and I love games that do things differently—especially when it's purposeful, and nothing about the way Resident Evil is designed lacks purpose. Everything is designed specifically to make you feel anxious, lost, or afraid—and suffice to say, they did well. I'd argue they even went a little too far in some places, like with the limited number of ink ribbons they give you. Ink ribbons are used to save your game, and if you run out of ink ribbons, you can't save anymore. That kind of shit sucks—but again, it's all about making you feel that terror, and using all your resources very carefully. I totally get that. As for what I'll play next, I was thinking about trying Silent Hill before Resident Evil 2—but I'm gonna need some time to prepare for that one, because I think Silent Hill is supposed to be a lot scarier.

Metroid II: Return of Samus (1991) - 4/5
: I initially played this just to get it out of the way, but I wound up having a much better time with it than I was anticipating. It's a very simple game that you can just play mindlessly while listening to a podcast, and just like I did, probably beat the entire thing in one evening, assuming you have nothing to do for the next five or six hours. The scenario is interesting, even if it leads to fairly repetitive gameplay, and the classic Metroid atmosphere is there, full-force. There's nothing like spotting the molted husk of a Metroid within some dark cavity underground, and just waiting for it to pop out at you at any moment. Well, okay—there's more than a few things that are like that—but this is the closest thing a Game Boy game has ever gotten to making me feel something like fear, so I think that's definitely worth something. With this game finished, I've officially beaten every 2D Metroid game—not including remakes. Here's a quick ranking for shits and giggles: Super>Dread>Fusion>Metroid>Metroid2. All of them great games. Don't let Metroid II being at the bottom fool you—I'd say it's probably the most underrated in the series, but it also has an official remake and a bunch of fan remakes, as well, that everyone seems to prefer. I'll play the official one some day.

Revelations: Persona (1996) - 3/10
: Yep, I finally beat this cunt. I played the PSP version, which retains the original graphics and everything, but has a new OST by current series composer, Shoji Meguro. This playthrough dates back to 2017—which is so long ago, because 1.) I fucking hate this game, and 2.) my PSP broke during the playthrough, and I didn't have the money to replace it right away. So it took me five years, but it's finally over. Now, I'm just gonna come out and say it—This is, by far, the worst game I've ever finished. The only other game that made me comparably miserable is Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, but at the very least, that game has a pretty excellent story going for it. The original Persona has a decent story, but I had a difficult time getting too invested on account of the gameplay being absolute dogshit. It's so slow, it's so boring, it's so grind-y, and there's so many stupid, obscure, time-wasting bullshit mechanics to learn and memorize, and almost none of it is fun, with the exception of negotiations. Ending fights by talking it out with your enemies instead of fighting them is very funny and charming, but this game didn't come up with that—that's been a mechanic since the NES Megaten games, so I can't even give it too much credit in that area. Dungeons are far too long, confusing, and have way too many random encounters—and since enemies can ambush you (attack you before you even get a chance to act), it's very common to end up in a situation where your entire party is going to get wiped out in a manner completely outside of your control or capacity to stop it, because the RNG God said so. Absolutely miserable. I'm well aware that the series is supposed to get "good" at Persona 3, and from then on, I'll be golden—but I'm cursed with a strain of autism that prevents me from playing games outside of numerical order, so I wound up discovering one of my least favorite games. The next game in the series, Persona 2, is split into two parts—Innocent Sin and Eternal Punishment—and someone I used to consider a friend told me that I would enjoy these games, despite what everyone else has told me about them, so I'll look forward to trying these ones out, I suppose. Having to buy two separate games is quite irritating, though.

Currently playing: Nothing. There's a lot of games I would like to play, but I'm having trouble deciding what right now. I have lots of RPGs in mind, but the problem with RPGs is that I can only do one at a time (otherwise I'll go crazy). Final Fantasy II, Earthbound Beginnings, and Persona 2: Innocent Sin are on my mind at the moment—as well as Metal Gear Solid, Silent Hill, Resident Evil 2, Rayman, and Tomb Raider.
Last Edit: March 29, 2022, 09:36:19 PM by Verbatim


big dog | Mythic Inconceivable!
 
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beat elden ring
very good game
beats the majority of open world games released in the past decade probably

onto lego star wars: the skywalker saga next week


alphy | Legendary Invincible!
 
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ive been playing through assassins creed ii lately and it's pretty fun

ive never played an AC game before, im only playing this one because i wanna grab more achievements (i played it for, like, 3 seconds back in 2013)

it's a bit janky but this game came out in what, 2007? 08? somewhere around there so i can look past some funky AI and stuff


 
Verbatim
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played a really nasty batch of games this past april—with one small exception, every game i played last month gave me different flavors of misery



Wario Land II (1998) - 5/5
: One of my favorite games growing up was Wario Land 3, but I hadn't ever played the other games in the series, so I thought I'd check out its immediate predecessor. For the handheld it was designed for, it's a top-notch platformer, even if 3 would ultimately outmode it in every single way, in my opinion. At this point, the only games in the series I haven't beaten yet are 4 and Shake It for the Wii, but I don't feel any urgent desire to play those any time soon.



Persona 2: Innocent Sin (1999) - 4/10
Persona 2: Eternal Punishment (2000) - 3/10
: These games were recommended to me over five years ago by someone who used to post here, so I feel kind of bad for taking this long to get to them. If you still happen to lurk every now and then, this one's for you.

Don't let my low ratings give you the idea that I hated these games, because I didn't—at least, not entirely. While I can truly and honestly say that I loathed the gameplay, just as I loathed the gameplay of the first Persona game, the Persona 2 duology does tell what has easily become one of my new favorite video game storylines... but boy, it's a damn shame that they don't play better. "Dated" does not even begin to describe the mechanics of these titles. Innocent Sin is probably the more tolerable of the two, given how easy it is, but its easiness did not go over so well with the fans—so when Atlus made Eternal Punishment, they made it a hell of a lot more challenging, which is all well and good, but it comes with the cost of forcing you to engage with its horribly decrepit mechanics. The games even feel more antiquated than significantly older titles, like Chrono Trigger—and that's something I find nearly impossible to forgive, hence the low ratings.

But, again—the story these games tell is actually quite good. Does it completely redeem the experience? I'm not sure about that, but it definitely helped carry me through, and I'm quite happy that I got to experience it. I loved ALL the characters. The way they're written is almost Evangelion-esque, in the sense that they all manage to feel like real people, instead of just silly exaggerated anime characters. They may feel a little stereotypical at first, but the story finds a way to slowly unravel the inner psychological turmoil that each of these characters is going through, which not only helps flesh them out, but also really endears you to them, and makes you feel truly invested in their personal arc—even with characters you initially dislike—which is quite rare. I can't even think of the last time that's happened. First impressions count for nothing in Persona.

Also, it's worth noting how unique Eternal Punishment is in terms of its cast. Unlike the rest of the series, which has you following a group of high school students, you are instead given a full party of adult characters—and not college kids, either. Actual adults—with lives, backstories, and careers. It's pretty cool.

I haven't even gotten to the themes of the narrative yet—but naturally, they resonated with me a fuckton. It's a story about many things, but from what I've gathered, it's mostly about learning how to accept your flaws, to atone for the mistakes you've made in the past, understanding what it means to be an adult, and how to take control of your own destiny—all that good coming-of-age stuff, all taken to these twisted, crazy, apocalyptic heights. That's my shit—and it was all very meaningful to me. I may not have enjoyed playing these games so much as I enjoyed the story being told, but sometimes video games are just kinda like that I suppose.

I'll be looking forward to playing Persona 3 in the future, because it's my understanding that the series really comes into its own in by this point—but I'll be delighted if the storyline is HALF as good as what I experienced in 2. In any case, I'll be taking a good long break from Persona for the time being—because playing two old-ass JRPGs back to back has done a number on my psyche, so I'll need some time to recover from that.



Rayman (1995) - 7/10
: It wasn't too long ago that I described Bug! (1995) for the Sega Saturn as the hardest game I've ever beaten, and it didn't take too long for me to find something to dethrone it. Yes, Rayman for the PS1 is the most difficult video game I've ever played—and if you have any idea what I'm talking about, you probably wouldn't believe me if I told you that I actually beat the entire game without cheating or looking anything up. And you shouldn't believe me. But the fact is, I did—and the things I resorted to doing in order to make this remotely possible are going to scar me for the rest of my life. Now, don't get me wrong—I still actually think it's a pretty solid game, especially for the year it was made in—hence why I'm giving it a 7/10—but GODDAMN, they needed to hire some more playtesters, or something. because the level of challenge was simply excessive. There's no other way to put it. You probably wouldn't expect such a friendly looking game to be this troublesome, but you haven't the faintest fucking clue until you've tried it yourself. I dare you.



Twisted Metal (1995) - 6/10
: I've never played a vehicular combat game before, so this would be my first one. I thought it was okay—definitely not terrible, but not necessarily my cup of tea, either. I was looking forward to hearing some cool licensed music, but apparently, they didn't started doing that until the third installment... so, instead, we just get this cheesy-ass off-brand butt metal, and the sound design in general is pretty awful. The game itself is... decently fun, I guess, but gets old quick. It was interesting to learn that Sweet Tooth is NOT the name of the series clown mascot—his name is Needles Kane, whereas Sweet Tooth is the name of the ice cream truck that he drives. My character of choice was Mr. Grimm—the only character in the game badass enough to take a motorcycle to a demolition derby.



Yu-Gi-Oh! Forbidden Memories - 2/10
: Like Rayman, this is another "milestone" game of sorts—or... what's the negative equivalent of a milestone? Anyway, I believe I declared the original Persona to be the worst game I had ever beaten once I finished it in March—but once again, I already have a new one.

This game is another childhood demon of mine that I decided returning to essentially at random, because I've already been playing a bunch of other PS1 titles anyway—I figured, with my big adult brain, I would be able to make short work of this.

Holy fucking shit, I've never been so wrong about anything in my life.

I don't know how to explain how shitty this game is without going over how much it butchers the Yu-Gi-Oh! card game, which I really don't want to do, so I'll just leave it at this—the game renders the game of Yu-Gi-Oh! down to its absolute boilerplate: Attack your opponent with monsters that have big numbers on them. That's PRETTY MUCH all you do. The problem is, when you're playing the game's story mode, you only gets cards with small numbers on them. How do you get cards with big numbers, you ask? At first, you can fuse your cards together to make cards that are kinda useful for the early part of the game, but those fusions will start to wane in their usefulness when facing stronger opponents. The only other way to get better cards is to keep winning duels. By winning duels, you are prized with one—singular—card. This card, roughly speaking, has a 90% chance of being absolutely worthless, a 9% chance of being maybe somewhat useful, and a 1% chance of being strong. You need to build a deck with strong cards if you want to beat the game—have fun grinding.

I am legitimately disturbed in the head for taking the time to beat this. I don't know what's wrong with me—and I am just giving you a barebones analysis what this game is like. I haven't even mentioned that there's no card ranking system, so it's possible for your opponent to just straight-up summon a Blue-Eyes Whtie Dragon (or stronger) out of the blue on the first fucking turn, and you MUST figure out how to deal with it. There's no way around it.

The game has two cool things going for it—an amazing OST and the ability to watch all ~700 monsters battle each other in 3D (the low-poly models and animations are rather poor, but that just adds to the charm, in my opinion).

The most offensive feature of the game, to me, is the feature that could've been its BEST feature. You see, there's a password feature in this game—at first, I thought they were just secret codes for rare and powerful cards for people who just wanna cheat. But no, it's actually a way to import your real world cards into the game by inputting the ID numbers printed at the bottom left corner of each card. These passwords don't just give you the cards for free, however—you still need to pay a certain number of star chips (earned through winning lots and lots of duels) to add those cards to your collection.

I'm thinking, how cool is that? If you have a physical copy of Blue-Eyes White Dragon in your collection, you'll be able to have it in Forbidden Memories, as well, without having to endlessly grind for it... but here's the catch: Every single card that is remotely worthwhile to use in Forbidden Memories costs just one short of ONE MILLION STAR CHIPS. The most star chips you can earn by winning duels is five, so in order to afford one of these premium cards (that you should already own), you would need to win about 200,000 duels. By the end of my playthrough, I played around 500 total, and I wanted to fucking kill myself—so the fact that they would bar you from getting decent cards in this way is pretty unforgivable.

This is a cruel, nihilistic hellspawn of a game that I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy—well, maybe I would—but I certainly wouldn't wish it on any Yu-Gi-Oh! fans.

Thankfully, the game's direct sequel, The Duelists of the Roses, wound up being a substantial improvement, and one of my favorite PS2 games. Avoid Forbidden Memories at all costs—it's the first game I've ever regretted beating.



this month, i'm definitely going out of my way to play some games that i KNOW i'll enjoy, such as ocarina of time and mgs1, because i need a break from the bullshit i put myself through here
Last Edit: October 05, 2022, 06:45:41 PM by Verbatim


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I recommend you Drakengard then :)


 
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tried to play nothing but the good stuff this past may—really starting to put the hurt on my backlog now



Metal Gear Solid (1998) - 9/10
: This one felt good to enter into the spreadsheet. I can't explain why it's taken me so long to play this one, but at least I finally did, because it really is one of the best games ever. Has it begun to show a little bit of aging? Absofuckinglutely, but in terms of what the game was able to accomplish with its filmic ludonarrative structure, I would be remiss not to acknowledge that the game's faults are thoroughly dwarfed by its achievements and more appreciable elements, such as all the clever yet hidden little implements of realism, which would always catch me off guard, or how every single story beat is memorable, engaging, and even thought-provoking at times, or how the game's (genuinely funny) sense of humor never gets in the way of its more grounded and serious moments. Turning video games into movies for the rest of time could be considered an unfortunate side-effect of this game's success, but at the same time, it's games like this that also help push the medium forward artistically, and I'll always cherish it for that. I'll be continuing on with this series as soon as I'm able.



The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (1998) - 8/10
: I have a troubled relationship with this game. There have been periods where I've enjoyed it, but I've never quite loved it. There have also been periods where I've outright disliked it, considering it to be the single most overrated video game, and that the people who claim to love it so much only claim as such because of nostalgia—an opinion that I completely disavow today. Having finally played it all the way through, during a time when nobody's really talking about the game anymore, I feel like I'm finally able to have a much clearer perspective on it, untainted by hype and expectation, and one where I can truly look at the game for what it is—and what I've been able to conclude for myself is that it's a pretty great game for which I hold a great deal of appreciation, and now more than ever, I am fully capable of understanding why the game is so beloved. From front to back, it just feels like the ultimate little kid's fantasy adventure. It's deeply comforting to play. The immaculate presentation makes the game's relatively small world feel big, vivacious, and exciting to explore. The dungeons are huge, brimming with atmosphere, and feel almost insurmountable until you finally conquer them. Every side character is lovable and interesting, to a point where I'd often find myself going out of my way to find one NPC on the other side of Hyrule just to see what they're up to—and I was never disappointed; they would always have something new to say. It's no secret to me anymore why this game holds such a special place in so many people's hearts.

Do I still think it's a little overrated, though? If I'm being honest, maybe just a little bit, but with my newfound understanding of the game's appeal, I wouldn't choose to phrase it that way anymore. Instead, I would simply argue that there are several Zelda games that do what Ocarina of Time does for me, but on a greater scale—namely, Majora's Mask, The Wind Waker, A Link to the Past and Breath of the Wild. Strictly on a personal level, I think I'd still even place the original Zelda game as well as Zelda II above it in my personal rankings. But that doesn't mean I think it's a substandard game in the series—on the contrary, I think it's quite fantastic. It's just that "fantastic" is "average" for a Zelda game, because the average Zelda game is fantastic. If anything, playing Ocarina of Time has only further solidified this series as my all-time favorite, so I'll never think to sleep on it again.

The next one I still have to play is Oracle of Seasons, which I hope to be starting soon—I've already beaten its counterpart, Oracle of Ages, which is somewhat ironic considering that Seasons is the one I owned as a kid.



Super Punch-Out!! (1984) - 3/5
Punch-Out!! Featuring Mr. Dream (1990) - 5/5
: Yep, I finally beat this cocksucker after SOOO many years of not being able to do so.

Okay, so it's not as cool as beating Mike Tyson, but they fight the exact same way. I also beat the arcade version of Super Punch-Out!! shortly before achieving this, as well, which means that I've beaten every single Punch-Out!! game.

My conclusion on the series:
1. Super Punch-Out!! (1994, SNES)
2. Punch-Out!! (2009, Wii)
3. Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! (1987, NES) / Punch-Out!! featuring Mr. Dream (1990, NES)
4. Punch-Out!! (1984, arcade)
5. Super Punch-Out!! (1984, arcade)

They're all great, of course—probably Nintendo's most consistent series, honestly—but the two original arcade games are definitely rough around the edges. The NES game, whether you're playing the Mike Tyson version or the Mr. Dream version, is an all-time classic that is going to be extremely fucking difficult to play if you don't have a good television. I have a laggy flatscreen television without a game mode, so the fact that I was able to beat the game, let alone play it in any capacity, is kind of a miracle. The SNES game is my personal favorite. It has the widest variety of opponents and a lot of cool mechanics at play that make each fight feel like a real fair fight (apart from all the illegal moves your opponents throw around). No fight ever feels completely one-sided in anybody's favor, and just like the arcade versions, there is no round system to steal anyone's TKO. It's a raw test of skill. The Wii game, objectively speaking, probably should be considered the best one, because it kind of is, but I still slightly prefer the SNES game's implementation of some of the better mechanics otherwise found only in the arcade games—plus, I find the opponents more interesting.



Kirby's Dream Land 3 (1997) - 7/10
Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards (2000) - 7/10
: Kirby 64 recently got added to NSO's N64 service, so I thought I'd check that out after playing Dream Land 3, its immediate predecessor, given that I've already beaten all the other Kirby games leading up to these ones. I don't have a lot to say about them—they're just good, old-fashioned, fun little platformers. Dream Land 3 has you experimenting with powered-up abilities given to you by six different animal friends you can partner up with, and Kirby 64 lets you power up your abilities by fusing two of them together. In both games, you only get to fight the true final boss if you collect every heart star or crystal shard in the game, most of which will require you to experiment with all sorts of unique ability combos to find. Some of these collectibles are fun, creative, and clever. Others are stupid, cryptic, and annoying. Regardless, like finishing a jigsaw puzzle, completing the process is quite satisfying—I just don't know if I'll ever come back to these games again.

If I had to pick which game I like better, it would probably be Kirby 64, but Dream Land 3 is one of the prettiest looking SNES games I've ever seen (which makes sense, given how it was the final first party Nintendo game to be released for the system).

The next Kirby game I'd play is Amazing Mirror, but I'm not gonna consider that "urgent," or anything. There's a lot of other things I'd rather be playing right now than another Kirby, so that one can wait a while.



Yoshi's Story (1997) - 5/10
: Yoshi's Island is one of my favorite games of all time, but unfortunately, this one didn't do a lot for me, especially as a direct follow-up. They definitely tried something different with this game, and I can respect and appreciate that. Although there are twenty-four levels, you only get to play six of them over the course of the game, so no two playthroughs will end up looking alike (unless you want them to). Levels don't "end" in the traditional way by having you reach some sort of goalpost—instead, levels end as soon as Yoshi eats exactly thirty of the fruits scattered bountifully across each level. If you only eat one specific kind of fruit, it'll take much longer, but you'll make Yoshi happier (which scores you more points).

That's all well and good, but I have never given a shit about scoring points in any video game I've ever played—I basically just play games to beat them, and to experience the story, if there happens to be one. I played enough of this game to see every level in the game at least one time, but my playstyle focused around eating the first thirty fruits I saw—a pretty boring and easy experience that I could make harder on myself by only focusing on a single kind of fruit, but that creates this weird dilemma in my mind, where I feel like I'm just "filling in" for the game's entertainment value, which is something that I consider to be the game's responsibility, not mine.

I don't know if that makes sense, but I basically just don't enjoy the sensation of putting a lot of work and effort into making a game more fun, because I think games should just be fun on their own, without my help. On its own, Yoshi's Story is kind of a dull mess of awkward, unsatisfying controls and incredibly messy level design. I appreciate the experimentation, I really do—but I think there's a good reason why they never really returned to this style of gameplay—because it just doesn't really work.

I haven't heard too many good things about any of the Yoshi games that would follow this one, unfortunately, so this will probably be the last game in the series that I play for a long time.



Double Dragon (1987) - 3/5
: I had this idea recently where I'd watch every single movie adapted from a video game for the purpose of ranking them, but before I'd commit to doing such a stupid thing, I'd want to familiarize myself with the source material of every video game that ever got a film adaptation. Double Dragon happened to be the oldest one on the list.

As a rule, I don't really like beat 'em up games—and while Double Dragon may not be the first example of one, it's commonly cited as the game that put the genre on the map. I obviously wasn't expecting this ancient-ass game to change my perspective on the genre entirely, but in case you were wondering, it certainly didn't. It is a thoroughly brainless experience—which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but it's just not quite for me, and I don't have much else to say about it other than that.

I'm sure the movie is spectacular, though.



Ice Climber (1984) - 2/5
: I define "beating" Ice Climber as making it to the summit (not necessarily the peak) of all 32 mountains, and because the game allows you to choose which mountain to start on on the title screen, I opted to use this function as an unlimited continue system—otherwise, I would never have the patience to beat this game with the small number of lives they give you.

This game sucks. I know it's almost forty years old, but I don't care. I really, really hate how it feels to jump in this game, and that's a pretty big problem when that's the only thing that you do. It's horrible. That said, I kind of wish Nintendo would make another one, though. If Kid Icarus can get another one, I'm not sure why Ice Climber can't. They could actually make it good this time.



What I'm gonna try to play for next month: Mega Man Legends, Cave Story, Star Fox 64, Tomb Raider, MGS2, TLoZ: Oracle of Seasons, Doom, F-Zero X, Sonic Adventure, and Wing Commander.
Last Edit: May 30, 2022, 04:25:26 PM by Verbatim


 
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didn't get around to playing all the games i wanted to last month, but here's what i did play:



Inscryption (2021) - 8/10
: Creepy roguelike deckbuilding game. Hard game to talk about without ruining what makes it interesting beneath the surface, so I'm not going to bother. Just look it up on Steam, and it looks remotely interesting to you, play it. I enjoyed myself with it.



Darkstalkers: The Night Warriors (1994) - 7/10
Night Warriors: Darkstalkers' Revenge (1995) - 8/10
Vampire Savior: The Lord of Vampire (1997) - 8/10
: Consider me a newfound Darkstalkers guy, I suppose. This is the entire trilogy, which I was able to check out thanks to this brand new collection that just came out. They're all amazing, but Vampire Savior is obviously the best. These games are well-known for having some of the most fluid and cracked out sprite animations of all time, but they're also extremely fun to play on top of that—a perfect marriage of style and substance. Some of the more "extra" character designs do kinda make me roll my eyes (Felicia), and you could certainly argue that the games offer very little in terms of unique mechanics to help it stand out from its peers in the genre, but it's impossible for me not to recognize just how hard Capcom popped off with these titles.

I'd say I'd kill for a new installment, but part of me is okay that the series has laid dormant for 25 years. Capcom is a different studio now; it's hard to know if the newer generation of developers could do the series justice in any way. It would be sick, though.



Star Fox 64 (1997) - 8/10
: What an all-time classic. I don't know anyone who doesn't have this in their top 10 N64 games. I'm terrible at it, hence why it's taken me this long to actually sit down and finish it, but I always seem to forget just how thrilling it is when I haven't picked it up in a while. It's such a rush when you're able to clear a whole level without losing a single copilot; getting to hear all the silly banter traded between characters through communications is always a treat. I haven't been able to get one of the better endings yet, but I will some day.

I'm not terribly interested in the rest of the series, but I can see myself trying the GameCube game some day, just because I know they tried something completely different with that one. It's just hard for me to imagine them topping 64, especially when nobody ever really talks about the other games in the series. Like, at all.



Cave Story (2004) - 7/10
: The ur-indie game. It's neat, has good music, and tells a nice little story. I have a friend who insists that I play it once more to get the true ending, which I haven't gotten around to yet. Given that the game was entirely designed by one dude on-and-off over five years (who proceeded to release the game for free when he was finished—what a chad king), it's safe to say that my respect for the game towers over how much I actually enjoyed it, which happens sometimes. It's a little quaint how a game originally intended to pay homage to 8-bit classics like Metroid and Kid Icarus has essentially become a retro classic in and of itself, but the layers of modernity it provides does help it "hold up" a little better than those games, at least by contemporary standards and gameplay sensibilities.



Mega Man Legends (1997) - 6/10
: Representing Mega Man's first step into the third dimension, the Legends series of Mega Man titles also represents a complete departure from the firmly established formula set up by basically every other game in the series until then. The game is a third person shooter adventure game with some dungeon crawling thrown in. A greater emphasis on story is placed than there ever had been before, although it ultimately plays out like a silly kodomomuke anime show, with lots of colorfully designed and highly expressive characters with BIG personalities who find themselves in increasingly absurd situations. Beneath its happy-go-lucky surface, though, is a surprisingly moody and atmospheric game with a whisper here and there of something darker and more serious to be found within its seemingly endless underground hallways. I wanted to like this game more, but it kind of has a whole lot of things going against it—mainly how clunky the controls are. I eventually got the hang of them, but the game overall just doesn't FEEL good to play, which is a bit of a problem. I also found the OST generally disappointing, especially given that you can normally expect a Mega Man game's soundtrack to be filled with bangers—but there really weren't any here, because they wanted to focus on creating ambient moods, which didn't really work for me. It succeeded in making the dungeons feel a little scarier to explore, but I dunno. I'd much rather be rocking out to some sick jams while spelunking for better robot gear, personally.

That said, I'm excited to play Legends 2 because I've heard that it makes some major improvements. I'm also interested in playing The Misadventures of Tron Bonne, a side-game starring who was easily my favorite supporting character from the first game.



Red Earth (1996) - 6/10
: One of the bonus games featured on the Darkstalkers collection, this is a pseudo-fighting game designed to be a single player experience where you level up your character avatar by slaying a series of monsters. It's like an RPG where all you do is fight monsters, but instead of the combat being turn-based, it's done in the style of a one-on-one fighting game with health bars and special moves and shit. It's very strange, and I've never played anything like it. The closest thing I could compare it to would be the boss rush mode in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. I give it points for the fun concept, but the execution could've been better. There's only four playable characters, and they're all pretty uninspired. Gameplay is slow and rather clunky, but it does feel good smacking those giant monsters around. If they ever made a sequel to this, I'm sure it would've been much better, but they never did. This game faded into obscurity and was never re-released until just last month.



Dear Esther (2012) - 6/10
: Part of the old guard of "walking sims" that people used to bellyache over, this game did essentially nothing for me. The man reading the letters in the background has a nice voice and gave a good performance, I suppose. The game itself, by design, is pregnant with emptiness, yet successfully manages not to overstay its welcome, on top of offering me pleasant scenery, and an interesting question as to the boundaries of what can be considered a "game." It's a work of art that I consider worthy of existing, the same way I wouldn't balk at the sight of a photorealistic painting of a table—it's nice for what it is, but not especially riveting or impactful. It's just kinda there, and I don't necessarily mind that.



EarthBound Beginnings (1989) - 2/5
: It's an NES-era RPG, so of course it's not good, but it does possess three qualities that are worth appreciating—its music, its setting, and its sense of humor. Sadly, these elements are not nearly enough to carry the experience or make it any less of a waste of time. And the game wastes a LOT of your time—it's one of the grindiest JRPGs I've ever played, on top of feeling like a shitty ROM hack of Dragon Warrior. It's a wonder how people used to tolerate RPGs this slow back in the day.

But now that I'm finished with it, I can finally move on to the SNES game that everyone loves so goddamn much. I'm gonna make it the very next game that I play. Keeping my expectations on the lower end, because I'm not sure how much I believe the hype.



i started an account on Backloggd, so i'm thinking about starting to post my thoughts on games over there for now
(i'm also trying to slow down on the video games in general for the time being as i get some life things in order)
Last Edit: July 12, 2022, 04:56:43 PM by Verbatim


FatherlyNick - fuck putin | Mythic Inconceivable!
 
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If you know, you know.
2022 update

Complete:
Duke Nukem Time to kill

To-do, sorted by nearest to completion:
Assassin's Creed 1
Area 51 (PS2)
Fallout 4
Fallout 2
Bully
Resident Evil 1

My god is AssCreed 1 boring. How did a sequel get greenlit in the first place? I can only play it in short bursts. Its best when you are progressing the story but I feel like there is too much padding with the dang tower climbing.
Last Edit: July 30, 2022, 05:35:43 AM by FatherlyNick 🇷🇺


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dahuterschuter | Respected Posting Frenzy
 
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All posts made under this account are works of fiction and satire under the ongoing online fictional writing project known as "dahuterschuter - A Character Study".
My backlog mainly consists of fighting games that I keep saying, "Man I should play some [game] today," and then never do, mainly because their online is dead or garbage.


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I might play Marathon games later...


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got myself a Trinitron (very cool and based CRT TV) so kinda keen to get to work on my old school games backlog. Got a tonne of  6th-7th gen games I wanna get to work on.