Everything posted by Jens
Finished Danganronpa 2 on Wednesday, which lets us pick characters from this game and the first Danganronpa for this event. And there's a lot of options, because both games are pretty much filled to the brim with all sorts of mental instabilities (I wouldn't necessarily call all of them mental illnesses, but a few of them for sure). For this event I'll focus on the character Mikan Tsumiki, which the game's Wiki describes as "an extremely meek, paranoid and fragile individual who suffers from hazardously low self-esteem as a result of severe abuse and bullying". It continues explaining that "She constantly worries about annoying, boring or offending others", which reminded me to some extent of... myself. For very different and way sillier reasons, thankfully!, but let me take way too much time to elaborate. I'll try keeping it short, I promise! Definitely won't look that way though. I've been friends with two girls from my class for years, we were actually very, very close. They were closer to being my sisters #4 and #5 than "just" being friends. But after a few years I noticed that I felt like our friendship is slowly dwindling and I felt like there's nothing I could do about it. Conversations didn't stick around, they focused more and more on other people, things like that. At some point I just couldn't take it anymore and did something... very silly, to end it in one fell swoop instead of watching my friendships slowly die. I was young (15 or so, I think), and therefore I was stupid. Instead of talking about things and trying to fix them, which would've helped for sure, I chose the nuclear option and never really stopped regretting it. Little did I know that this would lead to me carrying actual fear of loss around, and that for more than a decade. Whenever a similar situation happened - me finding a new friendship I enjoy greatly and start putting a lot of faith and hope into - those worries always came back. When the growth of the friendship slowed down or just "stagnated" at the same spot for a while, I always started getting... nervous, in a way. I saw - or rather imagined those patterns from the past and started worrying about things yet again. I never understood where those negative feelings came from and why they made me stop enjoying friendships, so much so that some of them died in a similar fashion. But then I found a certain person on this very site, a person that turned out to be the help I didn't know I actually needed. We started talking a lot! to each other and things were just very fun and awesome. But then it came back to me again, those weird and confusing worries (which is slightly embarrassing to talk about and explain with me having been 30!!! at that point, but... that's kind of the point of this thread, isn't it? ). We talked less to each other after a few months and my ape brain did it again. "Did I become too boring over time? Are other things just more important now? Is it time to say farewell to a friend yet again?". I started having so many negative thoughts, it made me think of bailing on yet another friendship yet again. I was worried about getting my feelings hurt, if I put too much hope into fixing things and potentially fail. It made me feel helpless and powerless, which was... taxing, to say the least. When something that's just meant and supposed to be positive and fun, a friendship, turns into a burden - even if it's an imaginary one - it really feels like it's dragging one down twice as hard. It was very confusing, too. I have the best fiance in the world, I will get married next year, so there clearly weren't any romantic feelings involved with my friend. I'm doing totally fine in my life, but I still felt this bad about "just" a friendship. I wasn't able to connect the dots and felt like I start digging myself such a deep hole again that I can't get out of it. But this time something else happened. Instead of drowning in these thoughts, becoming bitter and walking away from a friend yet again, I... kind of spat all of these negative thoughts right in her face. And let me tell you, that definitely was one of my best decisions ever! Talking to her about it immediately made me realize how silly my worries were in this case. It started feeling like "alien thoughts", which was very effective. She also turned out to be an infinite source of understanding and support, so much so that I actually figured out what my problem was. I always thought it's plain jealousy, which would've been super embarrassing and that made it difficult openly talking about it. But finally spitting those thoughts out, noticing that they actually are kind of silly and slowly working them down over time just... worked. Without talking about it I still wouldn't understand what's been wrong in my head. I still would've called it "jealousy", friends finding other friend and me just being jealous about it. I would've been ashamed of it, but still would've set myself back right back to square one by running away from my problem. But by talking about it (to the best person ever!), I had the surroundings I needed to think about this in a more critical fashion and figure out that "fear of loss" is a thing. Just reading what it is, how it affects you and so on made a giant bell ring in my head, that almost did 80% of the work by itself It actually made me chuckle seeing how much I recognized myself in the descriptions of this issue. It helped a lot and now I'm pretty sure that I can keep it under control. I'm not 100% immune to it today, sadly, I probably pushed it away for too long. But I always catch myself being close to becoming a weirdo again and stop myself. Therefore I only have one piece of advice for you: If you're worrying about something similar to this, just spit it out dude! That's the most effective way of dealing with it, believe me. There are only two things that could happen: - You might alienate the person you chose to talk to, but shit happens! To be honest with you... if someone doesn't accept you at your "worst", when you feel like you're down, that's what would happen at some point eventually. It still makes you learn things about yourself, which helps you with getting rid of your worries. Don't see it as misguided trust or anything and especially never let it stop you from trying again! There are people out there who will be ready to help you, so just buckle up and try again. - Or you're lucky like me and stumble upon a lighthouse of a friend first try, one that actively relates to your situation and gives you the time and "comfort zone" you need to sort your thoughts. The potential reward greatly outweighs the "risk", trust me! I won't @ you, you know exactly who you are. So I can grant you a bit of privacy, "Not Really Mystery Person" But yeah, this right here needs to happen or this text will be very incomplete: Thank you for everything in these last few years, my friend! I'll continue doing my best, turning your faith in me and the benefit of a doubt you provided into one of your best decisions ever! You rule!
Sooo... we will try! This year there isn't such a thing as a guarantee for getting a game done in the time frame, but we'll give it a shot. We're currently playing Danganronpa 2 and it would be a decent fit, just like the whole series kind of fits.
Platinum #220: Tokyo Dark: Remembrance
Not really that much to say about this one to be honest. It's a pretty short and simple VN-style game with some veeery loose point&click aspects thrown into it. The story is completely alright, at least if you keep in mind how small-scope this game is, pretty close to a little crime detective story with a pinch of supernatural shenanigans. The trophies aren't too bad overall either, not a whole lot to clean up after a casual playthrough for us due to the guides on this site.
That's actually pretty much it to be honest. If you're in the mood for a short-ish VN, I don't think there's really much to dislike in this one. It won't blow your mind, but I think it exactly delivers what one would expect from it with a reasonable approach.
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@Jens Nice nice, I see. And I agree to some of the points you mentioned. The story was toooo long (by far the longest VN I played). And the branching pathways certainyl don't make any sense unless you follow a guide. Anyway, thanks for sharing!
@SP71Q I think this one wouldn't be the worst choice ever, especially because of how short and sometimes cheap it is. Probably a good way sticking your toe into the VN-waters and checking your mood for those. If you notice that you're not feeling VNs at the moment, it's over before you know it (in comparison to some others at least)
Happy Birthday PooPooMan!
Platinum #219: Void Terrarium
Got this game from my #1 bestie @eigen-space and played it alongside her, so thanks for both once more my friend!
A pretty interesting roguelike dungeon-crawler kind of game. It has some other gimmicks as well, but it's probably better to not spoil them.
It can get rough a few times, the difficulty has some spikes. But with an aggressive approach, thorough exploration of dungeons and crafting for permanent stat upgrades, it was always a neat experience for us. The RNG effects can be worked down by taking time and leveling up.
Recommending it is difficult, because everything about it is so niche. Look it up, that gives you way more information than I could provide. All I'll say is: We liked it!
Platinum #218: Lost Judgment
Well, well, well... where do I begin with this one... Probably announcing it as my 10th Yakuza-ish platinum, that's a fun start!
I think if we look at all Yakuza games in a vacuum, without thinking about the influences of games on each other, Lost Judgment is most likely the best Yakuza game to date. It's super fluid, the combat finally feels as visceral and responsive as in Yakuza 0 and Kiwami. Don't get me wrong, the Dragon Engine in newer games was mind-blowing, but the combat felt so... delayed, ever so slightly. At worst it felt like programming a combo and watching the character do it. But this one takes it back to the roots, and it's great. Supported by insane visuals yet again, this level of detail just never gets old.
The story pretty much can't get any better. There's two things I disliked about Yakuza stories (in a funny way though): mustache-twirling "I've been the bad guy all along!" plot twist villains, and characters getting killed by offscreen gunshots. Neither of these things happened It constructs a story that starts folding into each other from three separate angles and it's pretty entertaining. One moment you think the mustache-twirling villain arrives, later he turns into one of the most sympathetic monsters in gaming history. I think people could watch a complete cut of all cutscenes on Youtube and have a great time!
And the whole completion package is good as well. There are tons of minigames, so of course some miss the mark for players (for me it's Baseball, it can finally go home). But every game was at the very minimum a good amount of fun, most were more than that. Nothing took a craaazy long time or was annoyingly difficult, the worst ones were very manageable for sure. A nice return yet again, after Yakuza 6's super simplistic completion. This one feels like you've conquered a Yakuza game again.
It's difficult to remove the Kiryu and Majima saga from the older games. Seems unfair adding it to the rating, seems unfair leaving it out. So in my overall "Yakuza Tier List"..... I think this one shares the #1 spot with Yakuza 0. If you want to play a Yakuza game in your life, and your 100% sure that you'll only play one, pick Lost Judgment.
Congrats dude! I totally agree that the story and overall package knocked it out of the park. Seems like the studio is always taking in feedback and fine-tuning their games. I recently replayed the first judgment on the ps5 and while the story was good as I remember it, man there was so much filler in there and the pacing wasn't that great relatively speaking now that I experienced LJ.
Anyway, the only thing I disliked about LJ was the paradise VR. Why? Because in almost every roll, I'm landing on a parkour challenge which is to climb that stupid wall!
Now I'm curious to see what RGG does with Yakuza 8 and now that Nagoshi is gone.
Platinum #217: Cris Tales
Well, this one will be a bit of a 50:50 thing for me. I'll start with the positive half of it.
It's a cute, small-scope turn-based RPG, we don't get a lot of those these days, so that's a big plus. The art style is neat, the story is completely fine and the pace was pleasant. It doesn't overstay its welcome and isn't over in a flash either, it has the perfect length in my opinion. Overall the game was pretty alright, we definitely enjoyed it for what it is. As a medium-sized RPG it did its job.
But then there are the bugs... Some skills of some characters caused frequent soft-locks in combat, that was beyond frustrating. In addition to that some new content that came with a patch messed with some of the trophies, making it a bit of an obstacle course around eggshells avoiding trophies becoming unachievable. These bugs really decreased our fun at some points of our playthrough, that was a bummer.
Shout-out to @eigen-space for caring a great deal about her guide for this game and updating it to the newest content. If you are interested in it, don't be scared by those bugs. Her guide covers all problems now and will maneuver you around them, there is a solution to avoid every single one of them. Because of that I think I can still recommend it if you like turn-based RPGs, for sure. If we still enjoyed it well enough with some annoying bugs, any other RPG fan has an even bigger chance enjoying it without those
It would most likely get rid of this very issue, because the coliseum stuff was added via patch. But instead of that it would at least add one similar issue, most likely even more. So my suggestion would be reading and following @eigen-space's guide on it. It easily maneuvers you around this armory issue and some other ones as well. As long as you follow those 5 short steps in her description of this trophy, you'll be fine
Jens replied to Dreggit's topic in AnnouncementsGuide of the Year The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV Trophy Guide Atelier Lulua: The Scion of Arland Final Fantasy XIV Gameplay Guide Tokyo Dark: Remembrance - Trophy Walkthrough Mail Mole - Radish Collectable Guide DLC Guide Dishonored - Dunwall City Trials Graveyard Keeper - Game of Crone Retro Enthusiast Disgaea D2 Dirt 2 New-Age Enthusiast Cris Tales Resident Evil Village Original Content Super Meat Boy Forever Returnal Formatting Monster Sanctuary Friday the 13th
My initial plan was listing nothing but platinums, a little counter if you will. But I'll definitely make an exception for this one, because this one will be quite memorable for me I think.
I just completed King's Quest and will now break it down into single chapters, because they are very different, more so than one might think.
Chapter 1 was probably my favorite. It reminded me of an Artifex Mundi game, just without the hidden object puzzles. Basically an "Adventure Lite" that won't get you stuck too often, if at all. That was pretty good stuff. And it is the first introduction to some surprisingly amusing humor and seriously great voice acting. The timing and delivery of the jokes kind of reminded me of Shrek, and I can not tell you why Probably because of almost every character being fun, while not being annoying (unless they are supposed to be annoying). Fun time!
Chapter 2 on the other hand... was pure garbage. They removed the small puzzles, the world you can walk around in (kind of) and the light-hearted, quirky humor and replaced it with aSpoiler
miserable, dark and boring survival mode in a goblin dungeon.
I don't know what they were smoking, to me they literally removed everything fun and replaced it with misery. That made me anxious about the rest to be honest. I bailed out of this chapter 20 minutes in, just to play it over with a guide. I wanted it out of my life as quickly as possible.
Chapter 3 and 4 picked it back up though. I'm listing both together, because I really can't decide which one I liked more. Chapter 3 brought the tone of the story back, especially the fun interactions between characters. The fact that it was more of a dating sim than an Adventure was something I had to get used to, but I did Chapter 4 boils the character stuff down to one character, pretty much. But it adds a LOT of puzzles, it's basically a puzzle-gauntlet. I liked both things the same after the awful second chapter, kind of like a breath of fresh air. So I can't really place one above the other.
Chapter 5 gets a little weird, it throws in some meta-elements. Breaking the fourth wall on occasion, purposely messing with the previous story, odd stuff. But considering how it justifies doing so, and therefore wraps up the background story of the overall series... I liked this one too. I appreciate the attempt of doing something wild (even if I would've preferred something more "down to earth") and it was a good way acting as the closing chapter.
So overall I liked it, actually more than I anticipated to be honest. If you find the season pass for all episodes in a sale - and it is quite often, even right now - I would recommend this one to pretty much everyone to be honest. They try so much different stuff over all these chapters, one has to land Unless you desperately need action in your life
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To be real with you, I had no idea that this was the revival of a suuuuper old series. They do pay a bit of an homage to the very old ones, otherwise I would still be clueless. I always sucked at full-on Adventure games, so I barely tried them back then. I was more of a Diablo kind of guy.
Give it a thought, the season pass is as cheap as dirt on sales
I grew up playing these on my Dads home PC. I still remember the games coming as a stack of 5.25" floppy disks which had to be changed every so many screens you moved. I would spend an hour and a half after school (Mom set a time limit on computer back then) just about every day playing these games and trying to figure out what was needed to be done to progress the game. There were no walkthroughs or youtube guides. haha
I thought the Odd Gentlemen did a pretty good job of taking the series on a wrap up tour so happy to hear you liked it Jens! Id definitely give it a recommend as well.
Piece of Cake: Walden, a game It's basically a Walking Simulator. You can't die, it's nothing but patience. It did get tedious at some points, but it never had any form of difficulty. It's Like Dark Souls: Ys Origin That boss rush was just something else dude... I didn't practice beforehand, which was a major mistake. But beating this crap took me 7 hours (!) straight. Another issue was the danger of crashing lurking behind every single death, which made the game significantly more taxing on the mind. Bad Ass Award: Celeste Yes, this game has the "Win the Game Button", erasing all difficulty. But for some reason I was too stubborn and did all B-Sides + 3 C-Sides legit. That was pretty difficult I must say, and ultimately pointless. But having done it was at least very, very memorable Grind of the Year: Star Ocean: Till The End of Time Well, it's Star Ocean alright. Thirty hours watching squeaky bunnies running in circles. That's what happens when your best friend is a dancing queen I guess... Finally Done Award - Final Fantasy Type-0 Played it years ago, but dropped it for reasons I couldn't even fully remember. So reviving something as ancient as this and getting it done was quite nice. King of the Internet - Torchlight 2 Kind of a stinky win, but it was the only thing that I played online, even if it was just for a few minutes. At least it forced me to have a conversation with that @Briste guy, while holding my controller up in my face. Worst Online Experience - Nothing Best Music - Cuphead Not much left to say about this one. The perfect soundtrack for an amazing overall design. Sleeper Hit of the Year - Valkyria Chronicles 4 Usually we get tired in games that almost exclusively deal with war, and I consider myself quite bad at strategic combat. But both things kept getting better and better as time went on, adding up to a surprisingly good experience. Biggest Bomb of the Year - Hades Considered the best rogue-like ever, so the rogue-like guy had high expectations for this one. And it pretty much messed up every aspect I like to see in a game like this. But at least it made me learn how awesome asparagus is! Best Trophy Image - Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night Dunno, it kind of looks like it's taken from the window glass of a freaky church. Which is quite fitting for the game, so I like it Worst Trophy Image - Ys: Memories of Celceta Same as for many other people in here, the "Use the same image, just change a bit of the color" - gimmick that's kind of cheap. Took this one because I don't like trophies with the game's logo in it either. Best Female Character - Amicia de Rune from A Plague Tale: Innocence Just a very believable big sister type of character. That's pretty much it to be honest, it doesn't really take more than that for me Best Male Character - Rean Schwarzer from Trails of Cold Steel 1-4 Kind of unfair, because this game closed a 500-hour series. But whatever, saying farewell to a protagonist like that does stick with me. Best Plat of the Year - Cuphead A game I was anticipating for a long time. A game I wasn't sure about me being able to complete. And it arrived, and it had a very satisfying and rewarding difficulty. Not as horrendously hard as people say, but for me it hit the sweet spot of having a fun learning experience. That made this platinum way more entertaining than I was anticipating. Wurst Plat Ov Teh Yeer - Torchlight 2 Online co-op plans that didn't work out. A grind that overstayed its welcome. And a game that's not terribly interesting overall. While scrolling through my profile for this category I thought "Which game would I like to re-play the least?", and it is this one. Most Anticipated Platinum of 2022 - Zero Time Dilemma This time around we're not planning that many games ahead. This is one though, and finishing a series is always a big plus in our book
Yes, in general this trick still works. But the game does have a few problems, it crashes from time to time. I'm pretty sure that relying on constant up- and downloading could potentially make those issues worse. So it's better to take this strategy with a grain of salt, at the very least.
I was aiming for 6, but for now I'm content with 4. Currently starting a new game isn't all that inviting for me, but I wouldn't rule another completion out completely. In any case, here's my four games: Orange No need for any summary, made a short-ish status post about it. Same. And people actually know this one .......same yet again. Now I feel like a Youtuber plugging my own profile page 40 times... Pink This game is pretty bizarre - shocking, I know! It was the first 100% VN we ever played, so why not pick the weirdest one in existence? It's actually pretty OK. It feels like one of those "unfolding games", where everything starts somewhat normal, but slowly goes off the rails more and more. Just with the difference that this one was besides the rails all the way from the start and went on an adventure afterwards These little stories did keep our attention for sure, it was a positive surprise. Towards the end the repetition in the beginning of a playthrough started getting on our nerves a little, and those 20 second bonus clips for a "true ending" really weren't worth it in a few cases, but the true overall ending made up for both facts. It might've been a little... too odd, just a tiny bit. But just the fact that it was one long story was a breath of fresh air at this point, so it was very welcomed. We would've liked a little tree diagram to keep track / look for endings ourselves all the way without any internet help, but that's not the worst issue ever.
Platinum #215: Hades
Well... this will be something. Because I can't remember the last game that disappointed me as much as this one. But let's start with the positives.
Next to Children of Morta it's the only roguelike I've played with a constructed story and actual characters. That wasn't too shabby. And the gameplay itself was OK, fast-paced hack&slash action. Not too flashy, but it got the job done in the beginning. It runs pretty smooth, the art style is pretty alright too. Having a busted run is just a pleasant as in other rogulikes too.
But well... it kind of messes up close to everything else for me... but keep in mind that I'm a roguelike snob
To me learning a roguelike is like learning a language. At first you lose all the time and think "How am I supposed to win this?". But you understand more and more, and improve as well. This dual learning curve is pretty much the core fun for me. But this "learning curve" barely exists in Hades, because everything is bare bones. All boons are way too much alike, it boils down to "Deal XX% more damage and add X status effect to your attack". That gets old real fast, it doesn't make the runs different enough at all.
Adding to this is the fact that I hated those boons having rarity attached to them. It just doesn't feel very fair and / or rewarding when good boons appear in shitty rarity all the time - and are therefore trash - while bad ones are epic - and are probably still trash. The only boons that made a meaningful difference to me were the hammer upgrades for your weapon, and boons that raised your damage on your most-used attack. That's it, the rest was pretty much cosmetics in the worst case. And that really messed with my experience of "learning builds". Was the boon just trash, or was the bad rarity the issue? This issue gets solved later on by improving the chance of rarer boons, but that was way too little too late. It gets slightly fixed by the permanent upgrades you can unlock in the mirror, but those advantages came when I was already sick of this game.
I disliked every single boss fight. They started out as being challenging, as they should be in a roguelike. But after that they continued being annoying. And considering that you fight the same four bosses every single time.... that's pretty annoying alright.
But the biggest issue is that there's no "mystery" to it. Once you beat Hades, the grind begins. You don't unlock ANYTHING meaningful in this game. No significant new bosses, no alternate paths, nothing. You pretty much start the grind after 2 or 3 Hades kills at most. And that was beyond boring. I used God Mode after the first few Hades kills to start the keepsake grind (clearing many battles with each of the 25 keepsakes), just to reach the meat and potatoes of this game while making progress on that too. But there was no meat and potatoes, it kept being asparagus and cauliflower... Increasing the difficulty through those negative run-modifiers didn't mean anything to me, the core game was 99% the same.
And here's my last major issue with it: The endgame tasks all suck extremely hard. Almost everything is based around giving NPCs items to trigger side-quest-related dialogue. And that is the most boring endgame I've ever seen in a roguelike. Not only do you have to grind the items, you can only give them one out of 7 - 9 necessary items at once. After that you have to reach them all over again (bad if those NPCs are RNG based within a run) and annoying in the starting zone, because they sometimes just aren't there, or you can't give them an item when they are talking to someone else. For whatever reason. These side quests are all ridiculously random too. Half the time I wasn't even sure about meeting the requirements. You just keep talking to them and wait for some kind of feedback. Talking to the same NPC 8+ times to wait for a nebulous trigger is just annoying beyond believe. Really poor in my opinion.
So yeah, I kinda hated it to be honest. There's an OK game hidden in here, especially if you only care about gameplay, less so about completion. But to me completion is essential in a roguelike, and therefore this one failed spectacularly. If they would've stitched 5 runs together and made it a simple, one-run game it would've been absolutely alright. But this pointless, grindy and RNG-based repetition gets old way too fast. Sadly that's 70-80% of the game right there.
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@Briste From all the things in this text I could get ganged up on... I did certainly not expect asparagus. One day I'll invite both of you to some sick Lemon-Asparagus-Chicken to make up for my blasphemy!
@Joe Dubz You know, with a little distance to Hades and after spitting out this ball of tar up there, I'm a little more relaxed about Hades. I still don't like it and definitely won't miss it, but my disappointed anger is gone
To me it matters the most what happens after the first couple of victories, the carrot on the stick if you will. In Isaac it's the items you unlock + The Chest, The Darkroom, you name it. In Gungeon it's the guns and Bullet Hell for example. But in Hades it's just "Git gud and grind", and that pretty much right off the bat. After 10 Hades kills it doesn't even matter whether you win or lose a run (except for some weapon upgrade items, barely used them to be honest), everything depends on how many rooms you clear. And that was insanity to me. Everything you have to do in this game is either a grind or very annoying side quest stuff.
So yeah, a lot of hopes that just weren't met, that's about it. Northernlion is my spirit animal in terms of roguelikes, I agreed with him on every single game. He put Hades as his roguelike #1 and I thought "Oh shit!", so I thought it's more along the lines of games he and I usually enjoy. But it really wasn't Just expect Bastion with a bit of randomized upgrades, one that you repeat many times. If you're ever in the mood for that, Hades should get the job done. But if you expect many micro-decisions and some interesting goals to work towards.... HUGE nope.
Congrats on the plat! And sorry to hear you didn't enjoy Hades very much.
I finished it recently and kinda have the same complaints as you, which are lack of sense of progress once you beat the final boss (except you becoming better and better) and a seemingly random grind to the plat. I reeeeeally wish the grind to maxing all keepsakes were much shorter, because gameplay improves quite once you actually get to choose them accordingly. But I really liked my asparagus and cauliflower, the storyline and gameplay made it up for me, and in the end I also started enjoying the additional challenges that turning heat up has to offer, but we can't all work in the same way, can we
Anyway, good review and good effort!
Platinum #214: The Pathless
Got this one as a freebie from @Inuty, so thanks once again
This one started a little rough for me. In this game you basically fly around the map and look for tiny puzzle locations scattered all over the place. You could summarize 90% of these as "switch puzzles", they never got too difficult or annoying whatsoever. They either reward you with a gem thingie you need just a few of to progress the story, or some other upgrades for your general mobility. And I was very confused in the beginning. You fly around in this search-vision that makes the screen go cyan, while looking for red blobs on the map. Everything looked the same and I had no clue what I was supposed to do The movement felt very limited (or rather I thought I was doing something wrong), finding things was a gamble (for me at least), the general way to progress was confusing me.
But once you get used to it (or make @Mesopithecus explain it to you) it does get better over time. Over time you unlock 10+ "double jumps" you can perform while gliding around with your eagle, and every single one makes the game more and more pleasant to play. Adding some of these very convenient boss upgrades / 100% zone completion rewards to the mix, my annoyances got smaller and smaller as time went on. So just bear with it for a while, things will definitely get smoother.
It doesn't take long at all, it took me ~10 hours. The collectibles aren't as bad as I thought at first because you don't need all of them, which I thought for a while. The higher you can fly, the easier it'll be to spot things you need to collect. You do need a bit of patience for sure, because your overall movement does stay at a somewhat low level. But in can be pretty cathartic once you're in the correct mindset for it. The visuals and sound contribute a lot to that as well.
So yeah, I think I would recommend it. It's pretty much Journey with a lot of aerial movement If you are in an explorative mood and want to zone out collecting stuff while solving some bite-sized puzzles along the way, this is a good one to pick.
And you can pet the eagle whenever you want. Nuff said.
Platinum #213: Tales of Arise
Because this game is still brand new I'll keep it even shorter than usual. I don't want to risk even the tiniest spoiler. This was practically our fourth Tales game after Berseria, Vesperia and Zestiria. Tales of Arise might be on our last spot in the "Tales ranking", but it's still a super decent game overall.
If you know other Tales games you'll have to get used to the different tone a little. It's more grounded and "serious" this time, most of the time I'd even call it dour. Other than the glorious owl there's very little comic relieve overall. Which isn't bad, but unexpected. And I'll only say this about the story: It takes a few convoluted turns, just to tell an overall quite simplistic story. Personally I think they could've left a few of these story paths out to make it less unnecessarily complicated, while still ending up with the basic premise. But that might just be me, it's not too complicated to mess with the story in a huge way.
Not much to say about the gameplay either, it's still a Tales game in this regard Super fluid, pretty flashy, nice to look at! The enemies get a little too tanky for my taste, but it never got too annoying. Other than that the overall completion started feeling like a normal JRPG - journey after a while. Not too difficult (just minor exceptions), long but not extremely so (I think we took somewhere between 70 and 90 hours) and a fair share of stuff to do. Stuff I once more don't want to spoil
Feels kind of pointless writing this while keeping so much to myself now that I think about it But I don't think this game needs much of an explanation. Do you like Tales? You'll get used to the changes, the core is still intact! Do you like JRPGs? You'll find enough of the things you like in this one too! It might not blow your mind, but it will definitely deliver a really solid, fun time for sure.
Platinum #211: Shing!
Guess it's better to start with a little disclaimer, out of fairness. I bought this game blind, I only got it because the name was mildly amusing to me. I was expecting something like The Messenger or Guacamelee, Platforming + Combat. But it really wasn't, and therefore I went in disappointed from the start. That really dropped my overall enjoyment, not the game's fault though.
It's a super simple beat'em up, like old NES games, Streets of Rage for example. You walk from left to right, beat up all enemies, continue, rinse and repeat. That's basically it, there's close to no variation at all. The game offers you two different control schemes. Using the right analogue stick for attacks - don't use this one. It's the most tedious thing ever, stick to buttons if possible! I really hope the PS4 got that control option patched in too...
It's just very, very basic. The humor didn't land for me, it gets repetitive real fast, enemy patterns were more annoying than challenging and the combat didn't really get satisfying. But once I got my head in the game, shook of my disappointment and started focusing I stopped hating it, it was passable by the end.
It's very short (7 levels, roughly 15-30 minutes each) and can get slightly challenging, especially in some challenge rooms. Mastering levels is fairer than one might expect. You need to beat the level quickly, while taking little damage and earning a certain amount of "battle style points". Thankfully you don't need all three at once, and you can restart checkpoints when you feel like having screwed things up. Mastering levels worried me, but I did all of them first try after beating the game. If a noob like me can do it, you can do it too
Dunno. If you just want a retro beat'em up, maybe. It's on sale somewhat frequently, currently at 5$ even. If you know what you're getting into and like this kind of game you might actually get something out of it. But if you need a bit of fresh gameplay changes here and there, Shing ain't your Thing.