Board 8 > Post Each Time You Beat a Game: 2021 Edition

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Underleveled
07/13/21 7:35:35 PM
#352:


Shantae and the Seven Sirens (Switch)
I actually started this playthrough back in October (I waited for a physical copy), but got sidetracked, mostly by GotM stuff. That triple-header of Golden Sun, Splatoon 2 and Star Fox Adventures distracted me. I tried to go back but actually left off at a part where there was very little clue as to what I had to do next so I put it aside even further. Finally picked it back up and had to look at everything I'd done and use a step-by-step guide to determine exactly what I had to do next. Even after that, there were things I had to look up because they absolutely relied on you remembering little things, which, after all that time, I absolutely did not.

I mean, what's there to say? This series is really fun. For a guy who says he's not good at Metroidvanias, I beat two in a row, and consider Shantae among my favorite gaming series. I actually had a ton of fun bopping around the world with all Shantae's powers, and even the late game enemy rush was really fun once I had a shit ton of powers to work with and a full inventory. I will say that there is a late-game boss that, as far as I could tell, was largely trial-and-error-based, which was really annoying, and the final boss was a bit tiresome. Also there are a few Clu Clu Land-like segments that seemed out of place and pointless, and a few rooms that took a long time to reach that, again, seemed pointless. Toward the end I spent a lot of time simply uncovering the entire map and, lo and behold, a lot of the new rooms and paths I uncovered turned out to be pointless by that point.

All of my complaints aside though, this game had some really fun platforming, some neat puzzles, absolutely bopping music, and all of the hilarious characters fans of the series have come to know and love. Another minor complaint is that they kinda half-assed the voice acting. There were a few fully-animated cutscenes which were fully-voice-acted, but then the regular dialogue was mostly not, but every now and then they'd throw in a few lines that were fully-voice-acted, and often they were random, unimportant lines. It was so weird. I hope the next game has full voice acting.

Play Time: 9:21:39
Item Collection: 68%

I remember 100%ing Half-Genie Hero, but probably won't do that with this one anytime soon. Overall I would say I rank this either 3rd of 4th in the series. Risky's Revenge and Pirate's Curse are definitely better. Shantae 1 is definitely worse. So this and Half-Genie Hero are a toss-up in the middle there. I'm inclined to say this one simply due to the fact that, due to not reaching all of its stretch goals, HGH was only about 2/3 of what it could have been. But I actually love all five and can't wait for the series to continue (I know it's no guarantee, but as WayForward's flagship series, there's no way they don't make a Shantae 6 in a few years).

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darkx
Games beaten in 2021 - 30; Most recent - Shantae and the Seven Sirens
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KCF0107
07/14/21 2:51:06 AM
#353:


GNOG (PC)

I'm really bad when it comes to finally playing games that I've long coveted. GNOG was in my Top 5 on my Steam wishlist for awhile before finally grabbing it...only to let it sit in my library for a couple years. I finally took the plunge, and it was everything that I could have hoped for. Outstanding. It reminds me a little bit of a structured and more logical Mu Cartographer.
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KCF can't actually be a real person but he is - greengravy
If you smell what the rock is cooking he's cooking crap - ertyu
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BlackDra90n
07/14/21 9:56:09 AM
#354:


Undertale (PS4)

I first heard of Undertale from GameFAQs contests and back then I wasn't super interested in playing it. But, it seemed like it had a decent amount of staying power over the years, so I figured I'd give it a shot when it went on sale.

The game was ok I guess. I went through the game completely blind and didn't think it was too special but I beat the game last night and I think my opinion may have changed a bit. The ending was pretty interesting and reading about the other endings now has made me kinda wanna replay it for the other endings. Still on the fence of whether I want to replay or just watch the other endings on YouTube.

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RyoCaliente
07/14/21 10:01:44 AM
#355:


Underleveled posted...
This probably isn't something I'll play again anytime soon, but I'm glad I played it. Having played some of Wario Land 3 and Wario World years ago, and heard nothing but good things about Wario Land II, I know this is a series that gets better from here.

Wario Land 4 is actually the best one imho. WA-HO!

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How paralyzingly dull, boring and tedious!
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KCF0107
07/15/21 6:51:36 PM
#356:


Riptide GP Renegade (PS4)

It functions virtually identical to its predecessor, but the course design, while more complex, I'd say is worse, and there were several baffling design choices that make this the clear inferior product.
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KCF can't actually be a real person but he is - greengravy
If you smell what the rock is cooking he's cooking crap - ertyu
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NBIceman
07/15/21 9:26:46 PM
#357:


Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon 2 (PC)

It's kind of a wonder that I grew up to love video games as much as I do, because I very much got my start in gaming with NES platformers, and I was never any good at them at all. Now, these days, we've got a lot of games being made with those sorts of titles as inspiration, and... I'm still pretty lousy at them. Pretty small sample size and all, but GameFAQs has such games as Celeste, Cuphead, and both La-Mulanas (all of which I've played in the last couple years) rated as harder than CotM2 by the community, and I found this to be notably tougher than any of them on a screen-by-screen or level-by-level basis. But hey, I finished it! And according to Steam achievements, plenty of folks don't, so that's something I guess!

Anyway, as the game itself goes, it's definitely the weakest of the three Bloodstained projects. Hard to put my finger on exactly why, but it just doesn't seem to have the same heart or care put into it. Levels feel less "tough-but-fair" and more "claustrophobic trial-and-error." The music isn't nearly as good, either. And the story (at least through Episode 1, which is all I'm doing for now because the others as I understand it are just the same stages done with different characters) is kind of a carbon copy of the first CotM. It all just feels less inspired.

Still quite solid, to be sure, but as another point of reference, that first one took me one sitting of a little under hours to get through, and this one took about 3 and a half across four sittings, so yeah, just didn't grab me. Glad I did it, but I was ready to be done by the end for sure.

Think next up might be Hades, which I'm incredibly excited for.

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KCF0107
07/16/21 3:56:16 AM
#358:


She Remembered Caterpillars (PC)

I have been playing this on and off for several years now, but I finally got through it. Lots of cool mechanics, but there's also a lot to do on any given puzzle that it can be deflating when you are completely lost in the middle of it all.
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KCF can't actually be a real person but he is - greengravy
If you smell what the rock is cooking he's cooking crap - ertyu
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paperwarior
07/17/21 4:30:59 PM
#359:


Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin (PC)
I didn't play much myself. Yeah, I didn't feel it. The melee combat design is very frustrating, and bosses tend to be either recycled or indistinct.

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"God Hand is the ultimate expression of the joy of humanity, specifically the punching part of the joy of humanity."-Shigeru Miyamoto
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KCF0107
07/18/21 3:20:46 AM
#360:


Neo Cab (PC)

Very similar to Night Call, which I went through last year. I feel like their pros and cons are almost the opposite. Neo Cab had a relatively strong overarching premise, but I feel like their integration of the FeelGrid wasn't the best, and the individual storylines of the passengers were very hit or miss.
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KCF can't actually be a real person but he is - greengravy
If you smell what the rock is cooking he's cooking crap - ertyu
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KCF0107
07/18/21 3:22:04 AM
#361:


Scribblenauts Unlimited (PC)

I had a hard time getting into the DS one like a decade ago, but I found this to be pretty fun. I just enjoy trying out silly answers to problems to see what works.
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KCF can't actually be a real person but he is - greengravy
If you smell what the rock is cooking he's cooking crap - ertyu
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SpoinkRulezz
07/18/21 6:58:16 PM
#362:


Picross 3D Round 2 (3DS)

I loved me some Picross 3D on the DS and didn't even know this sequel existed until recently. For 20 euros I definitely had to buy it and it gave me 60 hours of relaxation, slight frustration and most of all; tons of fun. I beat all the puzzles on Hard from the start, for me that was the best experience because this game has a lot of small and easy filler puzzles (even on Hard). The final one was massive. I liked the blue and orange distinction a lot, it definitely gave the game another major logic element to work around. Some puzzles felt like guessing the shape was actually part of the puzzle rather than just pure numerical logic. Not sure if that's the case, but it almost always worked anyway. Sometimes the puzzles got too big and my brain glitched out, so I ended up pressing the wrong colour or the hammer button when I actually meant to press something else, and the absolute mass of numbers in the bigger puzzles sometimes made it difficult to distinguish grayed out numbers and circles/squares. But these are all minor nitpicks, because I already miss my go-to game for chillout moments and train rides. I wouldn't mind another game like this in the future at all.

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Currently playing - Shin Megami Tensei IV
InSIGnificant mesSIGe
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Simoun
07/20/21 8:54:09 AM
#363:


Zombie Shooter (PC)

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It's not so cliche anymore when it's happening to you.
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WickIebee
07/20/21 9:38:25 PM
#364:


Haven't been on my desktop account in a while to post this:

Metroid Fusion (GBA)

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I'll just go back to gifs. Not like the winner was gonna click my topic.
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paperwarior
07/20/21 11:48:52 PM
#365:


Guilty Gear -Strive- (PC) (Story Mode)
This isn't even really a VN so much as a movie, but it's the closest thing the game has to a completion state. And it's not bad. It's an improvement over Xrd's, in part due to being a movie instead of a somewhat dry VN attached to too much fighting game lore.

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"God Hand is the ultimate expression of the joy of humanity, specifically the punching part of the joy of humanity."-Shigeru Miyamoto
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NBIceman
07/21/21 9:40:55 PM
#366:


Hades (PC)

First of all, a huge shout out to @PrivateBiscuit1 for gifting me this game for Secret Santa this past year (alongside Cuphead, which I neglected to mention when I posted about it a few months ago, and Stardew Valley, which I'm obviously getting to eventually). Thanks again for the truly awesome set of games, man!

Anyway, Hades has had a lot of awards and superlatives thrown at it pretty much since the day it released, and it dang sure earned every one of them. It's been a long time since I got annoyed at my daily life responsibilities (work, school, etc.) specifically because they were getting in the way of me playing a video game rather than because they just suck on their own merits, but that was the feeling I got with this one. Incredible experience in every possible way, at absolute minimum a top 25 game all-time for me.

My gamer confidence was a little low after CotM2, but after this game I think I've kinda confirmed that it's indeed mostly just those old-school platformers that give me trouble, because from what I can tell in some quick browsing of other forums and such, I think I made it through my playthrough here at a pretty solid clip compared to many. Made it to the Hades fight on my eighth escape attempt, beat him for the first time on #15 after a couple very close calls, then did it again on #17, and then rattled off eight in a row starting on attempt 19 to finish the main story, including at least one clear with each weapon and a couple different Heat levels thrown in for good measure when I got ambitious.

Definitely not gonna put this one on the proverbial shelf yet - want to at least make it to the epilogue before I call it quits, but July has been such a prolific month that I'm gonna put it on the backburner for a week or two just to see how many more I can squeeze in. And then I think I'm gonna go on a mini Supergiant streak because I played Bastion forever ago but have had Transistor and Pyre just sitting in my Steam library for a long while and I think it's definitely time I get to those.

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PrivateBiscuit1
07/21/21 9:49:40 PM
#367:


Bless you buddy.

Just glad you're having tons of fun with it! I recommend the other Supergiant games! They're all completely awesome!

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NBIceman
07/24/21 2:28:36 AM
#368:


Iconoclasts (PC)

I played through almost all of this game nearly two years ago and decided to come back to finish it right quick in the name of my recent productivity. Turns out I was even closer to the end than I realized - all I had left was what essentially amounted to an endgame boss rush.

The reason I dropped it back then was because this was an extraordinarily disappointing game that simply collapsed under the weight of its own ambition. Joakim Sandberg, the single-handed man behind the project, created a fascinating world and some really great characters in the seven years he worked on it. You know what he didn't create, unfortunately? A coherent, palatable story and gameplay experience that allowed those elements to shine. It's technically a Metroidvania, but it earns that classification by being juuuust non-linear enough for it; exploration and combat aren't fun enough to justify revisiting areas most of the time anyway. And there are undoubtedly some legitimately profound themes going on in its lore, but it's presented in such an awkward, esoteric fashion that I can't imagine the vast majority of players could ever actually figure out what the hell it's trying to say under the surface.

There's good things about Iconoclasts, but taken as a whole experience it's way too uneven and prone to getting in its own way to the point that even with its crazy long development time, it ends up feeling rushed at the end. Not awful by any stretch, but I think my ten hours could've been better spent elsewhere.

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Spurs - Yankees - Eagles - Golden Knights - Longhorns
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MXCM
07/24/21 11:50:38 AM
#369:


Mega Man 11 (switch). Improve records in Dr. Light trial.
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NBIceman
07/25/21 4:54:22 AM
#370:


The burning-through of quick games that have been in my Steam library for way too long continues.

Abyss Odyssey (PC)

Short and pretty mediocre. Cool ideas but it doesn't quite control well enough to take advantage of them. Don't reckon I'll ever really think about this game again.

Astebreed (PC)

Also short but much more sweet. Super solid bullet hell, just the right difficulty for its hour-ish runtime, surprisingly great music.

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Spurs - Yankees - Eagles - Golden Knights - Longhorns
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paperwarior
07/25/21 2:31:07 PM
#371:


The Hex (PC)
Another big explosion of meta weirdness from the creator of Pony Island. Thumbs up.

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"God Hand is the ultimate expression of the joy of humanity, specifically the punching part of the joy of humanity."-Shigeru Miyamoto
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PrivateBiscuit1
07/25/21 5:56:55 PM
#372:


NBIceman posted...
Iconoclasts (PC)

I played through almost all of this game nearly two years ago and decided to come back to finish it right quick in the name of my recent productivity. Turns out I was even closer to the end than I realized - all I had left was what essentially amounted to an endgame boss rush.

The reason I dropped it back then was because this was an extraordinarily disappointing game that simply collapsed under the weight of its own ambition. Joakim Sandberg, the single-handed man behind the project, created a fascinating world and some really great characters in the seven years he worked on it. You know what he didn't create, unfortunately? A coherent, palatable story and gameplay experience that allowed those elements to shine. It's technically a Metroidvania, but it earns that classification by being juuuust non-linear enough for it; exploration and combat aren't fun enough to justify revisiting areas most of the time anyway. And there are undoubtedly some legitimately profound themes going on in its lore, but it's presented in such an awkward, esoteric fashion that I can't imagine the vast majority of players could ever actually figure out what the hell it's trying to say under the surface.

There's good things about Iconoclasts, but taken as a whole experience it's way too uneven and prone to getting in its own way to the point that even with its crazy long development time, it ends up feeling rushed at the end. Not awful by any stretch, but I think my ten hours could've been better spent elsewhere.
I can echo these feelings. I really did not care for the ending, even if I understood the "intent" behind it. I also really didn't care for what happened with one of the characters for the end, you probably know the one. Just... a lot of disappointment all around. I loved a lot of the game though, but I just left with a bad taste in my mouth from the end.

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paperwarior
07/25/21 6:23:24 PM
#373:


I also didn't particularly like Iconoclasts and eventually quit playing.

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BlackDra90n
07/25/21 7:50:16 PM
#374:


Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons (PS4)

I played A Way Out relatively recently and my friend said that Brothers was the game director made first, and that it was also worth playing. It was on the PSN Summer Sale so I decided to get it and try it out.

I wasn't that impressed. The gameplay had some neat elements to it and it was cool seeing what elements transferred over to A Way Out, but I really didn't like the dual joystick controls. It was different but not in a good way. I found myself just struggling with the controls a lot. The story was also pretty simple and didn't really resonate with me, so just overall a miss. That said, it was cheap and short, so not terrible I guess.

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NBIceman
07/26/21 11:16:10 PM
#375:


PrivateBiscuit1 posted...
I also really didn't care for what happened with one of the characters for the end, you probably know the one.
I would assume Royal? Because that was my feeling as well. I went so far as to look up a guide for the part where you have to leave him behind on the exploding base assuming I was missing something, because it made absolutely no narrative sense to me why THAT would be the solution of all things and the end of his story.

Glad I wasn't the only one let down there!

Furi (PC)

This game absolutely kicks ass. This was another one I'd been wanting to play for a while but always shied away from because the difficulty was so notorious and I wasn't confident in my ability to beat it. But after Cuphead and a few other things from this year, I figured I'd at least give it a shot. And I actually found it quite manageable. It's definitely tough, but it's never unfair, and it always feels incredibly satisfying to win a fight. Died once to the Hand, several times to the Edge, and a few more times to the final boss - everything else was a first try. The Strap, the Burst, and the Song were the standout fights to me, but I honestly didn't think any of them were underwhelming; at absolute worst, they were creative.

I'm blown away by how few folks on B8 seem to have played this game (according to my friends list) relative to some of the other Steam offerings I've beaten, because I personally can't recommend it enough and just wish like hell it was longer. I was worried it'd be a letdown after how much I liked Cuphead, which is a similar game in a lot of ways, but I honestly enjoyed Furi just as much. It's every bit as stylish and challenging and fun and I'll definitely be coming back to achievement hunt a little bit.

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PrivateBiscuit1
07/27/21 2:32:51 AM
#376:


NBIceman posted...
I would assume Royal? Because that was my feeling as well. I went so far as to look up a guide for the part where you have to leave him behind on the exploding base assuming I was missing something, because it made absolutely no narrative sense to me why THAT would be the solution of all things and the end of his story.

Glad I wasn't the only one let down there!
Yuuuuup. For arguably the best character in the game, we don't see a satisfying end to him. It's a bleak, terrible, depressing one. Royal tried, and failed, and tried, and failed, and tried again, and then he finally comes to the conclusion that maybe he's not the prodigy he thinks he should be, and is so sure of the entire game. He KNOWS he's a failure, and he actually can't deny it any longer.

But the direction the game goes is for him to absolutely fail, and you need to leave him behind as the only use for him now is as a glorified paper weight so you can go on. How is the conclusion for him to come to realize he's not great after all, then let him die saying he's a worthless failure? That's not good writing, it's just SAD.

And I get the game is supposed to be all about Iconoclasts, fake bullshit people worship, fake yadda yadda. But Royal finally broke past that and saw it. And he was promptly punished further for it with an unsatisfying death. Just so, so, so sad in all of the worst ways. Have him at least go "I know I'm a worthless failure... but let me do this one thing for you. Let me succeed at something." And just sacrifice himself in a blaze of glory. That has a lot more emotional impact than dance around him and dump him on the ground and run. It was always clear he was nothing special. It doesn't cheapen your story by having the guy who is not special do ONE thing right.

Very, very frustrating storytelling.

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Simoun
07/27/21 4:03:51 AM
#377:


Zombie Shooter 2 (PC)

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Simoun
07/27/21 4:05:42 AM
#378:


Iconoclasts was amazing. I love the story and it made me think about it for weeks. But I will admit the metroidvania part of it just fails.

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It's not so cliche anymore when it's happening to you.
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NBIceman
07/28/21 8:16:46 PM
#379:


Simoun posted...
Iconoclasts was amazing. I love the story and it made me think about it for weeks. But I will admit the metroidvania part of it just fails.
Yeah, I'm sure it really did resonate with some people and certainly understand why. I just wasn't one of them. Felt like the game was talking at me for ten hours without really actually saying that much.

Furi's story accomplished so much more to me in about 1% of the text, if that. The Beat has one line of four words that's had me lying awake thinking about it both nights since I finished that game. Less is more sometimes.

Strider (PC)

Super, super solid. Nothing groundbreaking from a strict gameplay perspective, but it stands as a wonderful example of how to do a remake well, which isn't to say that it isn't fun exclusively on its own merits, either. Movement is slick and tight and free, which is good, because this game is a whole lot Metroidvania-esque than I realized and so fits in with what accidentally became a bit of a theme for me this month. Hiryu is just as cool of a video game character as any you could name. Fun time.

And with that, I've officially beaten ten games in July 2021, which is a completely arbitrary feat that I will almost definitely never repeat in my life. Lot of good stuff in the last ~30 days.

I've also now got exactly as many finished games in my Steam library as uncompleted ones now, which is also not likely to last very long.

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GOGZero
07/28/21 10:40:37 PM
#380:


Bionic Commando (Game Boy)

Replayed. It's low key one of the best games in the series.
I even enjoy it over the NES version.

One Strike (PC)
Replayed. Fun fighting game. Wish it had true online play/matchmaking instead of using other means.

Mana Spark (PC)

Replayed and completed it as Ellis.
I like this game a lot.


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paperwarior
07/29/21 8:04:36 PM
#381:


Splatterhouse (PS3) (replay)
Jason Goes to Development Hell
I guess nostalgia wore down the edges on this game, because a lot of the edges are rougher than I remembered. There's still a lot here to like, and it deserves credit for being as good as it is considering that development was killed by Bandai Namco and the studio disbanded. I think it would all be a lot more tolerable with shorter load times, though.

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"God Hand is the ultimate expression of the joy of humanity, specifically the punching part of the joy of humanity."-Shigeru Miyamoto
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MXCM
07/30/21 7:50:52 AM
#382:


The Legend of Zelda (NES) second quest. Interesting game.
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Nanis23
07/31/21 7:32:24 AM
#383:



Nier Automata (PC)

It's actually a replay, played it once before in 2017 when it came out but it was a pirated copy.
Decided to buy it after I played Replicant and this time go for all achievements.
I must say...it really loses it's charm in a second playthrough. I was never a fan of the gameplay of Nier games, and since atmosphere is everything to me...a second playthrough is less enjoyable.
Also, difficulity is even worse than Replicant. In Replicant "Hard" had enemies being bullet sponge but at least they didn't OHKO (well..most of the times). So here I decided to play on Normal and it was too easy while hard was too hard
Losing chips if you die before recovering your body doesn't help either

Wish I could experience this game for the first time again because it was truly magical. Second time...not so much

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