Board 8 > Exdeath Plays Every Game in the GotD 2020 Contest Part 2 (ft FO:NV, Ghost Trick)

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Evillordexdeath
01/04/21 9:06:31 AM
#101:


Sissel arrives to the Chicken Kitchen after some kind of disaster has occurred there - Lynne is dead again, and so is a man who crashed his van through the restaurant's windows. He travels back to 4 minutes before Lynne's fourth death, and learns that the man died on impact ramming into the Kitchen and that a giant ornamental chicken was knocked loose and fell on Lynne. The waitress turns out to be an undercover detective spying on a man and a woman who were there to meet Sissel; this is why the police have marked it out and why Lynne is interested in the place. She found a note on his corpse about the meeting. The couple are carrying a big red briefcase but Sissel can't open its lock to find out what's inside. They eventually learn that the waitress placed a bug on the couple's meal to spy on them, but the woman found it and burned it with a lighter, causing it to short-circuit and produce a noise so loud it knocked the detective, who was listening to it through headphones, unconscious. Sissel and Lynne untangle the whole disaster by swapping out the bugged chicken for a normal one, so that the detective just hears the cook's singing. While they're together, they talk about how Lynne seems to have shot Sissel, which she denies having any memory of but eventually accepts that she did and apologizes, as well as the case of Detective Jowd, which Lynne is investigating. Jowd is on death row by his own request and is to be executed in about an hour. He's important to her because he saved her life ten years ago, when she was held hostage at the local park. Lynne tells Sissel to go prevent the execution while she goes to appeal to the Justice Minister, who at this point I assume is the man we met earlier whose wife ran out on him.

When Sissel does make it to the jail, the execution has already taken place. The electric chair short-circuited and blew up, but Jowd was so close to it that he still died in the explosion. Sissel goes back in time and turns on the chair while no one is in the room, blowing it up with no deaths, and then helps Jowd escape while the jail's power is out. Jowd starts making use of Sissel's powers by devising a way for them to signal each other from afar and then by calling the prison's phone after his escape to help Sissel get to him. They talk about the painting Jowd was making of Sissel, but the detective refuses to tell him anything except that Lynne's music box has something to do with his memories. He explains that he wanted to be executed due to feelings of guilt for the case at the park, where he had to kill a man in order to save Lynne- and then he gets recaptured by his old friend Cabanela.

I like how the plot is unfolding up to this point. The whole set of reveals with the chicken kitchen were fun and I liked the curveball that Jowd had wanted his own execution. It was interesting meeting him and finding out just how aloof he is now. I'd say it's also an example of a puzzle game that does a good job ramping up the complexity as it goes. That prison escape section was kind of tricky. It was a bit frustrating because of the stealth element to it, at first, but once I got the idea down it wasn't too bad.

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I'm playing every game from GotD 2020! Games Completed: 14/129
Currently Playing: Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective
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Lightning Strikes
01/04/21 10:34:21 AM
#102:


I think your count for 2014 is a bit off, using the NA release dates which the contest used:

2014:

Bravely Default
Danganronpa 2
Shovel Knight
Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze
Dragon Age: Inquisition
South Park: The Stick of Truth
Destiny
The Binding of Isaac Rebirth
The Talos Principle
Mario Kart 8
Hearthstone
Bayonetta 2

12 games in total.

You were right for 2016 though - incidentally 2014 has a lot of games that got NA releases that year but had their original release that year (and Hearthstone, which came out of early access), while the opposite was true for 2016 - if you went by original release dates 2014 would have fewer and 2016 would have more. And to that point I think it was Minecraft that tripped me up regarding 2011. So 2011 is second least. I also forgot another significant snub, Mortal Kombat, which many would have preferred over MK11.

On the snubs, I don't think Skyward Sword is the OoT or the LttP of its generation. I think ALBW is the bigger deal. I think FFXIV is a much bigger deal than FFXIII and indeed FFXV. But I also wouldn't compare FFXIII to Skyward Sword - Skyward Sword gets dunked on these days but it got an average score of 93 and a bunch of game of the year awards, not so for FFXIII. I think if there is no franchise limit (which was never confirmed IIRC), FFXIII does not necessarily make it in. I actually think one of the stories of this decade has been some of those previously guaranteed smash hits falling shorts while the smaller games rise.

But there are also franchises with only one game that you might expect to see more from - Pokemon most notably, but also Uncharted (I don't even like Uncharted 3, but it probably should have got in), Mortal Kombat (definitely a case of nomination splitting), and so on. I think whatever rules were at play were probably fairly flexible.

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Evillordexdeath
01/04/21 11:49:33 AM
#103:


Oh yeah, I made two mistakes with 2014: I had both Bravely Default and Danganronpa 2 under their original Japanese release dates and I also didn't include Hearthstone or Destiny. When I initially decided to start this project I made a list of 118 games with the 10 that were excluded being games I just really didn't want to play, and those were two of them. I had forgotten to add them back to the list. I actually did make the same mistake with 2016 by omitting Overwatch. Minecraft's release date is kind of weird because it was in some kind of publicly playable alpha state for a long time. It's funny how for the purposes of the contest it was listed as being released after Terraria, a game that pretty much rips it off.

I agree, that was essentially the point I was trying to make about Skyward Sword. Even if it did review pretty well and still has a lot of defenders, it seems like it's generally regarded as a disappointment for a console Zelda. I know people really like Link Between Worlds, and it might have been too much to ask for Skyward Sword to measure up to games as important as LttP or OoT, but I also think Wind Waker and Twilight Princess would easily get into a contest over LBW. FFXIV is definitely a big deal overall, but in the specific context of GameFAQs contests, which seem to be very hostile to MMO games, I think it shows how poorly-received FFXIII was that it failed to make it in while XIV succeeded. I agree that there's this trend of "fallen giants" that emerged over the last decade.

It's hard to say about Uncharted or Pokemon. I feel like Uncharted games outside of 2 aren't necessarily seen as "important" games, particularly on this site, and people here don't seem to care very much about Pokemon games outside of the first few generations, so it's not too surprising that the only representative of that series is a remake of Gold/Silver. I personally don't think any Pokemon games deserved to make the contest, but that's definitely my own bias speaking.

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I'm playing every game from GotD 2020! Games Completed: 14/129
Currently Playing: Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective
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ctesjbuvf
01/04/21 12:08:29 PM
#104:


Eh, Uncharted 3 was probably left out for the same reasons God of War 3 was, left generation leftover that you don't really think of as a 10s game and both with much newer next generation games in the a bracket that clearly aimed to be diverse.

As for Pokmon, it makes complete sense to represent one of the biggest franchises of the decade. It definitely deserved it more so than Final Fantasy and much else. There's no real peak of it though, the way the games are made. Allen probably just took the one with the most nominations and decided that was enough to represent Pokmon. I don't buy that the fanbase agreed enough on a favorite to nominate it to a third seed for the rest to completely miss the field. Which I don't mind was done, just saying. Though it is weird to represent Pokmon with a 2009 remake.

Out of curiosity, what other 8 games did you originally decide to leave out?

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Evillordexdeath
01/04/21 5:18:14 PM
#105:


ctesjbuvf posted...
Out of curiosity, what other 8 games did you originally decide to leave out?

The list was as follows:

Borderlands 2
Diablo III
Final Fantasy XIV
Dota 2
Hearthstone
Destiny
Overwatch
Splatoon 2
Xenoblade 2
Fate/Grand Order

Most of which are games I've tried before and know just aren't for me. The only ones I haven't played are FFXIV, Xenoblade 2, and Fate/Grand Order. I'm really not into MMOs and I think "gacha" mechanics in games are the worst, so I'm especially resentful toward XC2 for including them in a singleplayer RPG.

-

I finished Ghost Trick. I won't recap the rest of the plot, if only to save myself some trouble. I recommend this one.

Like I said before, it's a well designed puzzle game with a good difficulty curve. The puzzles where Missile starts getting involved became a little overwhelming for me, I guess. The very first one you do with him actually gave me more trouble than any other part of the game. Still, I never once needed to look up a guide while playing this game, which is a testament to how intuitive the puzzles are. The story is pretty good. All the characters are likable and it's quite elegant as a mystery story. Everything comes together neatly and it has an intricate plot with a lot of surprising interconnected parts. It's very engaging and does a great job making you want to play more and find out what's going on. I'm just not sure how I feel about some of the reveals. The answers to things like Sissel's true identity feel a little underwhelming. And I guess I wish it was a little more depressing. The ending kind of works out with everyone going on to have perfect lives with all their problems solved, which removes a certain complexity. For example Sissel had to kill the two assassins to save Lynne earlier on, but that's kind of undone by the ending.

I want to take some time to think it over, so my last write-up on this game won't come until tomorrow. Definitely check this one out if you don't mind story-heavy games, though. It would probably have a shot at being my retroactive Game of the Year if 2011 weren't so stacked.

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Evillordexdeath
01/05/21 6:19:18 AM
#106:


Final Analysis: Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective
What I thought of Ghost Trick: Really enjoyed this one.
Would I play it again? Definitely
Did it deserve to lose round 1? This > Red Dead by a mile.

"But you know, it makes me wonder. A little girl, all alone in the park, listening to music and roasting a sweet potato... What kind of childhood did this girl have?"
"Doesn't everybody have at least one day in their life like that? Give her a break!"

In For Whom the Bell Tolls, the doomed Robert Jordan wonders if you can make a few days count for a lifetime's worth of happiness. Ghost Trick was giving me a similar vibe for a little while, with its protagonist doomed to vanish with the morning and living an intense last night filled with meaningful new relationships and important personal accomplishments. It even brought Kurosawa's Ikiru to mind once the idea of saving a park came into things. In the end, though, it doesn't commit at all to being as sombre as either of those, and that disappointed me a little bit.

That's just because I have a fetish for misery, though. In actuality, Ghost Trick handles its tone really well. It's a comedy game, of a particularly Japanese kind. The characters all have flamboyant, eye-catching designs, exaggerated movements, and over-the-top personalities. That can make them seem a little one-note, but they're fun, which is the most important thing, and I'd take distinct but gimmicky characters over boring and interchangeable ones like you see in certain western games (looking at you, Call of Duty.) And as a comedy game, I'd say it's quite successful: this game made me laugh out loud a lot of times, and that's rare because I have a blackened, shriveled husk where my soul is supposed to be.

Off the top of my head, I can't think of another mystery story as good as Ghost Trick. It was planned out thoughtfully and neatly: almost everything has some connection to the larger plot in ways that unfold slowly and deliberately, I don't think there are any errors or plot holes, and it's consistently engaging and intriguing. It also wraps up completely and efficiently without leaving any questions unanswered. It gets good mileage out of its detailed supernatural rules and is good at applying them to both the story and the puzzles. It also really helps that the characters are likable enough to drive investment. However well thought-out the mystery might be, it would've been meaningless without that aspect. Even as someone who doesn't like dogs, I have to echo the common sentiment that Missile is the standout character. You can tell the writers liked him and went the extra mile to make him special. What's particularly cool about Missile is that he initially seems like a minor character for an early puzzle but turns out to be the most important player in the entire story.

The only trouble is that a mystery is always more interesting than an answer. Ghost Trick resolves itself really well, but once the answers are revealed I felt a small sense of disappointment with the answers. That's unavoidable, though, the same way that wondering what your presents are on Christmas eve is always more fun than actually opening them.

If the game's style is noticeably Japanese, I'd say something similar about some of the themes. In the ending, the characters talk about the thread of bonds between people in a scene that could've fit in Fire Emblem: Awakening, so I'll admit that's kind of trite, and it doesn't sit entirely well with me that everyone, even the most ruthless villain in the story, gets redeemed with a happy ending, but at least it fits with the game's light-hearted tone.

There's not much to complain about with the gameplay. It's conceptually original as a puzzle game and it's also exceptionally well-designed with a good difficulty curve and intuitive puzzles. To nitpick, it's a bit of a pain when you have to go back in time and repeat dialog in certain sections, and once Missile gets involved the interface can be a little unwieldy since you'll have to shuffle both characters around because they can't occupy the same space at once. If I have to resort to such tiny quibbles to criticize the game design, that probably says enough.

Ghost Trick is a pretty small and focused game. There aren't any optional areas or collectibles to speak of, and there's no epilogue or post-game of any kind. That creates an issue with replayability, I'm sure, but the game accomplished something rare: when I completed it and went back to the title screen, I felt a sense of longing, because I wanted to play it more.

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I'm playing every game from GotD 2020! Games Completed: 15/129
Currently Playing: Dead Space 2
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Evillordexdeath
01/05/21 6:37:55 AM
#107:


Dead Space 2
Release Date: January 25, 2011
Playing on: PC
Previous Experience with Dead Space: Watched someone's eye get drilled
Expectations for Dead Space: Slightly forgettable horror game

I've never played the first Dead Space, but it's a story-centric series to the point where perhaps I should've for the purposes of this project. I consciously declined to do so because I didn't think the game would be very interesting. I should've done the same with God of War, looking back. This is the game's chance to prove me wrong. I read the synopsis of the first game on Wikipedia. It reminds me a little bit of Alien: there's an extremely dangerous artifact on a distant space colony, which turns people into monsters called Necromorphs, and certain organizations are trying to nab it for their own nefarious purposes. The protagonist is the only sane person around and has to sort out the results of everyone else's fuck-ups. The first game has a pretty complete story. It's not begging for a sequel by any means. That creates the possibility that this second game is a bit of a cash-grab, but we'll have to see.

The most famous part of any of these games is probably one scene where a guy undergoes some kind of traumatic eye surgery. It's the only part I knew about before just now. It's from this game, actually. I think it was effectively disturbing enough, but it makes me worry that this game might be to horror what God of War is to action. That's to say, I'm worried it will exaggerate things until they lose their impact. There's a good old horror movie called The Haunting, and in that there are zero violent kills or spooky monsters. It works well because there's that ambiguity as to what's actually going on. For me at least, I'd say that's generally the way to go with horror. I'll find out whether Dead Space's approach works for me or not.

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Lightning Strikes
01/05/21 7:26:15 AM
#108:


I dont want to risk biasing your opinion, so Ill use spoilers, but I must say:

I love this game.

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Evillordexdeath
01/05/21 7:05:58 PM
#109:


Alright, started up Dead Space 2. I only played for a little under an hour tonight, just enough to get to the start of "Chapter 2." I'm playing on Normal.

After surviving the events of the first game, Isaac Clarke has apparently spent the past three years locked in some kind of human rights disrespecting insane asylum as a test subject for experiments on the alien artifact he was exposed to. He's still having nightmares about his girlfriend from the first game, but he can't make much sense of them because he has partial amnesia due to the drugs that were used on him. A support character talks to him over the phone and tells him that he's got terminal dementia as a result of all this, but she can cure him if he makes it to her. Meanwhile, the space station he's on has gone to hell and is overrun with Necromorphs. Guy can't catch a break!

I'd say the game is a bit on the silly side. The horror does lack a certain subtlety, since it's really just screaming monsters running at you all day long. It reminds me more than a little bit of Resident Evil 4, with the over-the-shoulder third person shooting, but I think that game's goofiness was a little more intentional. I wouldn't call the game scary, but the very beginning where you're running around in a straightjacket with Necromorphs everywhere is at least tense. Maybe I should've played on a higher difficulty, because the enemies aren't too threatening so far. It seems like you can even punch a lot of them to death without taking damage. There's a boss fight at the end of chapter 1, right after you find your first shop and gear up, but he only hit me once or twice. You get the power to slow down enemies which can also be used for certain puzzles, and there's a physics weapon kind of like the gravity gun from Half-Life 2. In combat, it seems like there's an emphasis on shooting the enemies in lots of different places to blow limbs off. That's kind of fun. If not scary, it seems like the game might at least be fun so far.

I was surprised by just how many options they give you for weapons and armor when you make it to the very first store. It was kind of overwhelming. I just picked a suit of armor at random. I think it was the "earthgov" armor. For weapons, I picked the rivet gun, a flamethrower, the short-ranged buzzsaw weapon, and the plasma gun you get earlier, since most of the ammo I find is for that one. I figure I'll just try them out for a little while and then swap to some others to give those a shot.

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I'm playing every game from GotD 2020! Games Completed: 15/129
Currently Playing: Dead Space 2
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Lightning Strikes
01/05/21 7:41:18 PM
#110:


The first two Dead Space games are absolutely the successor to the RE4 style of action horror, especially when you consider how far RE5 and RE6 leaned into action. Then of course Dead Space 3 got mandated by EA to be more action-focused to meet ridiculous sales targets it was never going to meet, it didnt, and the franchise got killed. Ah well.

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Gall
01/05/21 8:38:52 PM
#111:


It's funny that Ghost Trick and Red Dead got paired together, since after experiencing both their stories I'm not totally sure which one I prefer. In terms of good plotting, in which everything in the story has a purpose for being there, Ghost Trick is obviously much more successful. But while Ghost Trick's characters are enjoyable, I did find them a little shallow, most glaringly in the case you mentioned of the villain being so quickly and easily forgiven. And while Red Dead didn't have very many good characters either, the more I think about it the more I like its final act, which was so effective at making me care about Marston's relationship with his family and why he did what he did for them.

Still, I think Ghost Trick's dialogue gives it the edge for me. Shu Takumi has a great sense for what makes comedy work in text form and it's really just a lot of fun to read what he writes.

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Evillordexdeath
01/06/21 3:22:02 PM
#112:


Gall posted...
It's funny that Ghost Trick and Red Dead got paired together, since after experiencing both their stories I'm not totally sure which one I prefer.

Yes, you raise an interesting point. I agree that there are valid reasons to prefer either story, so that which one a given person likes better might say a lot about what they value in narrative. I think I would agree that RDR has the "deeper" story, between overall more complex characters and themes that do a better job posing questions. The closest thing to a message Ghost Trick really has is that pets are the best and headphones suck.

Personally, I'd say without hesitation that I liked Ghost Trick better, and for me the main reason for that is that it was just much more consistently entertaining than Red Dead. Even if they do lack nuance, I think its characters are effective because they make the game more fun and therefore helped keep me invested in the plot, which I would agree is the most impressive part of the story.

Lightning Strikes posted...
The first two Dead Space games are absolutely the successor to the RE4 style of action horror, especially when you consider how far RE5 and RE6 leaned into action. Then of course Dead Space 3 got mandated by EA to be more action-focused to meet ridiculous sales targets it was never going to meet, it didnt, and the franchise got killed. Ah well.

Yeah, I've heard other people complain about the third game, both because it went too heavily toward action and because it was designed as a co-op game, which does a lot to make it less effective as horror. A shame, but yes, that's AAA game development for you.

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Currently Playing: Dead Space 2
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BetrayedTangy
01/06/21 5:25:33 PM
#113:


A bit late here, but yeah Ghost Trick was great. I didn't know how to feel about the ending at first, but I think I've warmed up to it.

It could easily be a darker game with more serious themes, but I think there's plenty of those out there to play. While I do like games like Zero Escape or Danganronpa more it was really refreshing to get a cute little story where everyone gets a happy ending. It's a lot better as a nice little standalone story that doesn't try to be more than it is.

I think if I had any issues, some of the puzzles weren't the most clear. I distinctly remember when you have to drop the chandelier on the wife of the Prime Minister. I had gone to do it, but my timing was a little off and she dodged it. So while I had found the right answer, there was no indication that I just had to to attempt it again as I thought that would happen every time. But that's really just a nitpick, overall it was really good. Probably in the Top 3 of the 2011 games I've already played.

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Evillordexdeath
01/06/21 10:11:54 PM
#114:


I played a little more of Dead Space, up to about the start of Chapter 4, when Isaac has been spotted by the powers-that-be on Titan station and has had to bunker down in an old church to avoid their gunship. Aside from the corrupt government on Titan, which apparently recreated the alien artifact that caused all the trouble in the first game to try and use it for their own personal gain (which does remind me of Weyland-Utani a little bit,) the other antagonistic group that has a presence in this story are the Unitologists. They're a religious group who basically worship the Necromorphs and view the process of transforming into one as a spiritual unification. Isaac wigs out at the idea of going into one of their churches, but his lady support character, Dana, says it's necessary and is apparently waiting there herself. This is, of course, pretty suspect. There's another deranged man who used to be a patient at the same hospital as Isaac who keeps calling him on the phone. Apparently he killed his wife and kids.

There was no big boss fight this time around, but a few new enemy types were introduced. There's one exploding enemy that you have to shoot in its mutant bomb arm to blow it up at a safe distance, and there are also child necromorphs. This might just show that I'm psychotic, but I feel like fighting them is kind of funny. Watching these little kid-shaped monsters run screaming at you and then die and go flying after one shot is just comical to me for some reason. Children hunt in packs in this game. I got introduced to the jet-pack zero gravity mechanics, which seem kind of cool, though I only got to use them very briefly so far. I've kept with the same loadout in terms of weapons but I swapped the ripper out for what I think is called the pulse rifle, which is kind of like an assault rifle. It's a decent weapon generally and pretty handy for the little insect swarms in particular. The flamethrower weapon is good. It's short range, so I wouldn't use it on the bomb guys, but it takes down most other enemies pretty quickly.

The game's alright so far. I find the general gameplay decent enough that I don't mind playing. It's just too bad that the story and the horror aspect are kind of underwhelming, at least so far.

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Currently Playing: Dead Space 2
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Evillordexdeath
01/07/21 12:19:17 PM
#115:


Wrapped up chapters 4 and 5, which are about making you way through the Unitologist church to get to Daina. There were a few points where I took a lot of unnecessary damage, so I've been having a little bit of trouble keeping well-stocked on healing items, and most of my money has been going in that direction. Finding ammo has been no problem, though, Incidentally, it seems like the game modifies what sort of things enemies and crates drop based your inventory. I never find ammo for the weapons I'm not carrying, and I have a suspicion that it starts dropping health kits more often as you run low. At the same time, it's starting to seem like the weapons are a little unbalanced. Checking the numbers at the in-game upgrade bench, the Rivet Bolts have the same damage per shot as the pulse rifle, but with an ammo per clip limit of 16 instead of 50 and a slower rate of fire. That being the case, I wonder if I can exploit this system a little bit by stashing all of my weapons except the flamer and the pulse rifle and just using those two for the rest of the game, because they seem much better than the other weapons I try.

There's a boss creature who hounds you for a lot of your journey through the church. At one point, it attacks you for a little bit and then runs away and makes you live you a day in the life of a children's entertainer. Once you finally make it to Daina, she reveals that, surprise surprise, she's secretly a unitologist and wants to capture Isaac to make new Markers (which are the alien artifact that creates the Necromorphs.) The one that destroyed the Titan station was manufactured with the help of Isaac's and his deranged friend Stross' memories. She just gets torn to ribbons by the gunship from earlier though. Just to complete Isaac's day, the boss monster comes back right after that and throws him around for a bit until he blows it up with an explosive crate. Now he's back in the deserted residential areas and he figures that since the first untrustworthy support character didn't work out he'll try contacting Stross next and listening to what that guy tells him to do. I'll try and pick this up later tonight.

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Currently Playing: Dead Space 2
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Gall
01/09/21 12:10:15 PM
#116:


I've played New Vegas for long enough to properly join up with the NCR. I just got the main For the Republic quest from Colonel Moore, and have been tasked with dealing with the Great Khans.

I haven't had many technical problems, except for one major one: the AI. Whenever an NPC or enemy starts to move, it is a mystery where they will go and how many directions they will take to get there. It makes combat even jankier than it already is: enemies you're attacking will turn on a dime or get stuck in walls, and enemies attacking you can often be thwarted by backing up. The backing up strat has been especially effective so far with Veronica and Rex as my companions - I walk into the enemies' range to alert them, and in a few seconds all that's left is a pile of punched and bitten bodies.

And surprisingly, I like this approach to the combat. It doesn't feel like compromising a major part of the game, because the world and the NPCs are what's more important. I'm enjoying the pattern of going to a new area, talking to everyone there, and getting quests that have a lot of options for how to affect things. I can see it becoming repetitive later but for now it's working at keeping me invested.

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BetrayedTangy
01/12/21 2:22:37 AM
#117:


So I did some catching up today and played through a lot of the game. The first 6 or so chapters were really fun imo. The combat's been a blast and I was loving the huge variety in enemy types, but as things continued I started getting... frustrated. I'll use spoiler tags on the next part, but it's just gameplay and difficulty spoilers.

Starting around Chapter 7, there's a pretty big spike in difficulty. You get attacked by a lot more enemies that take more damage and your supplies start becoming scarce. About midway through Chapter 9 I actually had to drop the difficulty to casual. I had completely run out of ammo and just didn't have another option. It's a shame, because I was enjoying the more difficulty enemies, it just sucks because I don't have a decent way to fight them anymore. Not hating on the game, I just don't think I'm suited for the genre haha.

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Evillordexdeath
01/12/21 3:08:04 AM
#118:


One of the potential issues with survival horror games is that they're pretty unforgiving by nature - if you start struggling you'll use more supplies than you're supposed to and eventually reach a breaking point where you have nothing left to press on with. I remember the first time I played Silent Hill on hard I had to restart the game altogether from pretty close to the end because I just didn't have any ammo or healing items to work with and couldn't go on.

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BetrayedTangy
01/12/21 3:26:47 AM
#119:


Oh yeah I've always found the genre fascinating for that reason. It really gives them a unique feel compared to other games. I think I just got too caught up in treating it like an action game. I really should've just been stingier with supplies, it also doesn't help that I never thought to backtrack to the shops.

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ctesjbuvf
01/12/21 8:12:15 AM
#120:


I'm considering joining in on some of the upcomming games. For 2011, some or all of of Dark Souls, Arkham City and Skyrim. It highly depends on the lockdown situation when you reach that point though.

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Evillordexdeath
01/12/21 8:15:50 PM
#121:


I finally got back to Dead Space 2 today and played through chapter 6. Last time, I was thinking about how I mostly seemed to find ammo for the weapons I was currently carrying and wondered if I could just reduce my inventory to my two best weapons and use those all the time. I decided to try it out and it seems to work, which translated into things going a lot better for me. While before I was spending most of my money on healing items because I would take a lot of damage when I had to go into one of the more packed areas with the plasma or rivet guns, with this strategy I had a high point where I was carrying 13 health packs and used some while at full health to free inventory space. I could also sell the starting plasma gun and all my other ammo and ended up buying four power nodes with all the money I saved, which allowed me to max out my pulse rifle's damage stat.

I think I'm playing with some kind of DLC bonus and didn't realize. The flamethrower I got at the start of the game for 0 credits is called the "bloody flamethrower" but seems to be completely identical to the normal "flamethrower" that you have to find the schematic for in chapter 6 and buy for 11,000. It did seem odd to me when the game dumped so many weapon options on me right at the start.

The most memorable part of this chapter is the spooky school area, where they introduce the baby enemies, which are basically banelings from Starcraft. There's a little cutscene where a woman coaxes her mutated baby into coming over to her only to get exploded, which I saw coming, but it also reminded me of the classic anime Elfen Lied so that was nice. For Isaac, though, these enemies are not very threatening, which was probably part of the reason I started getting a lot of supplies. Isaac also makes a new friend in this chapter named Ellie. At first he sees her standing in a cage killing lots of necromorphs, and she's very distrustful, but they meet up shortly afterward and she agrees to work with him. She's also traveling with Isaac's buddy Stross. It was a nice change of pace to meet an NPC in person who didn't immediately die. The Earthgov guy who commands Titan station also turns up for a second to taunt Isaac and friends.

I only played the first few minutes of chapter 7, but that difficulty spike might already have appeared in the form of one very troublesome enemy that takes up most of a wall and spawns other enemies. It took me a lot of health and ammo just to deal with one of those guys. You have to target specific weak points and it can 1-shot you if you get to close. The flamethrower seems pretty useless against it, so it might expose a weakness of my two-weapon strategy.

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Currently Playing: Dead Space 2
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Gall
01/13/21 8:19:42 PM
#122:


I do recommend Arkham City, it's a lot of fun and not too long if you're just doing the main story.

In New Vegas, I've completed several major questlines, dealing with the Great Khans, the Omertas, Mr. House, and the Brotherhood, including Veronica's storyline. I also did the Dead Money DLC which was an interesting experience. I've noticed that, generally speaking, quests in this game fall into 2 categories: mainly exploration, or mainly skillchecks. That is, going out to a dungeon area to kill some things, or going around a town area talking to NPCs. I tend to prefer the latter, since it feels more like I'm actually participating in solving a problem, even though the skillchecks are a pretty simplistic way of doing it. From what I know about Bethesda's Fallout games, they have better exploration but skimp out on the NPC interaction side, which does not sound like an appealing change to me.

I don't want to spoil Dead Money too heavily, but it tried something a bit different to this pattern. It has a very small set of areas to explore, and the skillchecks you make interact with your exploration in a much more direct way. I liked it in theory, but the DLC has a few mechanics that make things really frustrating. The main reason to play it is the writing, as usual.

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Evillordexdeath
01/13/21 8:32:57 PM
#123:


Yeah, I prefer the in-city quests in all Fallout games too, as a general rule. I like how they capitalize on the game's skill system to create multiple solutions and opportunities for role-playing. I played a little bit of Fallout 3 recently and so far I'd say you're right, the dialog options aren't as expansive in that game generally speaking. Part of it is a conscious lore-based decision, since the capital area was supposed to be heavily targeted in the war and is not very populated as a result. I played the Old World Blues DLC just before the end of my NV playthrough. It's generally considered to be the best DLC by people I've talked to and I know one guy in particular who is in love with it. Like you said, the dialog writing is definitely the big reason to play that one and it's very indulgent on that front with a lot of NPC conversations that go on for a really long time, possibly even to the point of excess where it gets a little exhausting, but I did think it was fun. I'm curious to play the other three DLCs when I revisit NV. I've heard the four of them have a loose overarching story of their own.

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BetrayedTangy
01/14/21 2:34:09 AM
#124:


Dead Space 2 is beaten.

I definitely enjoyed my time with it for the most part. The atmosphere and combat really stood out to me as the highlights.

I'm kinda wishy washy on how I feel about the survival horror aspect to it. Specifically how Dead Space handles it at least, I thought it was brilliant in RE7 and Outlast. I think I'm gonna wait until your final thoughts before delving into it more though.

I'm going to jump ahead to Bastion, although when you get to Terraria I wouldn't be opposed to joining a server if you might've been looking to set one up

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Evillordexdeath
01/14/21 4:01:44 AM
#125:


I survived chapter 7 well enough. Apart from the big monster near the very start the hardest parts where an elevator section where you keep getting attacked by wall-crawling necromorphs on the outside of the area and one big room full of enemies. I've put a few upgrades into my flamethrower now, and am approaching the point where I won't be sure what to do with my power nodes. Most of the chapter is about dealing with a troublesome AI. You have to disconnect it via a method vaguely reminiscent of the scene in 2001 where HAL gets turned off, but with more shooting. There's also a part where you go out into the cold vacuum of space, so that was cool. You can see what looks to be Saturn in the skybox, which I thought was kind of neat.

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Currently Playing: Dead Space 2
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LinkMarioSamus
01/14/21 5:28:05 AM
#126:


Thinking of returning to Civ5 sometime to elaborate my thoughts on the game more. To me though other than the social policy system and MAYBE the combat, it's a step back from 4 in every way.

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ctesjbuvf
01/14/21 5:36:29 AM
#127:


Gall posted...
I do recommend Arkham City, it's a lot of fun and not too long if you're just doing the main story.

Would you recommended having played Arkham Knight first?

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Lightning Strikes
01/14/21 6:41:35 AM
#128:


Assuming you mean Arkham Asylum (Knight comes after City), you should but it is not at all necessary, it's just a great game. City stands well enough on its own even though it does follow up on Asylum.

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ctesjbuvf
01/14/21 7:47:35 AM
#129:


Shows how much I know lol, but yes, meant the one before.

City is the only one I own, I got it as a present many years ago, just never came around to it, but I believe my roomate has all of them, so I can probably borrow it.

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Evillordexdeath
01/14/21 3:49:11 PM
#130:


I remember really enjoying Arkham Asylum when I played it as a kid. My brother liked it too - I remember he played through the entire game on my PS3. The only real complaint I remember having was that some of the bosses, especially the last one, are pretty lame. I think City is generally considered the better game of the two, but there are some really cool parts with Scarecrow in Asylum which might be the high point of both games.

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I'm playing every game from GotD 2020! Games Completed: 15/129
Currently Playing: Dead Space 2
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BetrayedTangy
01/14/21 4:09:54 PM
#131:


I definitely like City over Asylum, but Asylum's still phenomenal. I like how it manages to be remain unique by being a metroidvania.

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Gall
01/14/21 8:14:54 PM
#132:


I never did play Asylum myself. Back when City came out everyone said it was like Asylum but better, so I just jumped in there. I get that Asylum has its own strengths but I don't think it's a must-play.

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Gall
01/16/21 12:35:04 PM
#133:


Lanius was no match for my understanding of supply chains, and the NCR secured the Mojave. Goodsprings and Primm received protection and merchant traffic, albeit with high taxes. The Followers of the Apocalypse were pushed out of Freeside, and some of them would reconnect with the evacuated Great Khans in Wyoming and help them rebuild. Freeside wasn't too bad off, as the Kings maintained both the NCR alliance and Freeside's independence. The Brotherhood also maintained their NCR alliance, but Veronica still feared their interference in her life and so continued her solitary existence.

I hate to say it, but the more I played this game, the less I enjoyed it. Combat doesn't get any better as enemies become bigger bullet sponges, there are too many quests that are just fetching something without interesting choices or dialogue, and honestly, while the writing is a cut above what you typically get in a video game, I found it unexceptional for the most part.

That said, New Vegas does have one major success, which is a world that feels like everything has a history and a reason for being there. But, I find I appreciate that more when reading through the lore on the internet, rather than actually playing the game. In that vein, I'd like to mention something that I think most lovers of New Vegas's worldbuilding will be interested in: the Van Buren design documents.
https://fallout.fandom.com/wiki/Design_document#Van_Buren
These are the plans for Black Isle's cancelled Fallout 3 from the early 2000s. They cover most of the locations that would have been in the game, along with who the NPCs would have been, what quests they would have given, and the choices the player could make. It's really cool to see the work that went into crafting the world, and there's even some elements that would be repurposed for New Vegas in much different forms. I recommend starting with the Denver document.

2010 wrapup coming soon!

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