rjkclarke

Premium Member
 PSN Profile
  • Content count

    893
  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

4,105 Excellent

About rjkclarke

  • Rank
    Wanderer In The Fourth Dimension
  • Birthday 11/16/90

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Beyond the horizon of the place we lived when we were young. In a world of magnets and miracles

Recent Profile Visitors

15,269 profile views
  1. Final Update Stick it to the Man (PS4) 0%>100% God of War (2018) (PS4) 0%> 100% Lone Survivor (PS4) 0% > 100% The Vanishing of Ethan Carter (PS4) 0%> 100% Black Mirror (PS4) 0%> 100% Games Completed 5/5 So..... my gaming time took a massive hit around the middle of July whilst I was in the middle of playing through God of War, I had a mixture of loads of really huge things going on in my personal life (some absolutely amazing, some the furthest thing from great that you could possibly imagine, mixed with some of the worst burn out I think I have ever experienced with video games,and it lasted a good three weeks at least). Thankfully I am out of the other side of that now. My advice to any of you if you ever get burned out with trophy hunting - find someone that you're really close to, and just play some games with them, completely trophy free and hassle free. Just enjoy that persons company, and enjoy the experience that you get from that. For me, it was all that I needed to remind myself that I still loved gaming, a whole lot actually. I am sorry that I kind of lost track of the event in the last 6 weeks or so, I have noticeably been posting and looking at the site a lot less than I was, not through not wanting to, more just being more than a little distracted lately. It was nice to read a lot of your final updates though, and see the massive amount of progress that I always expect all of you awesome folks to be making, and are always making with these events. I'll throw out some thoughts on God of War quickly too! God of War was a real blast to play through, once I actually got in the swing of it, and reconceptualised what I actually thought I wanted from another God of War game. It's one of those games I think where the moment you let go of the notion of what you think a God of War title should be, you'll start to have a much better time with it. This is the type of God of War game that I never realised that I wanted, or needed. Whilst some of the action set pieces are gone, they've been replaced with a different kind of set piece. There are still action set pieces, but I think the broader focus on narrative, character development and story-telling really has brought a whole lot of depth to the series that wasn't quite there before. As a trophy hunting experience I found it really satisfying too, for the most part, that encouragement to see and do everything in a game is one that doesn't go unnoticed from me........ Apart from Niflheim, that can go and sit on a pile of cacti. It's fun enough, but I lost too many Mist Echoes to my own stupidity, and getting distracted by notifications ...... So really I'm at fault not the game 😂 I'm not going to link a review, because I've been so unproductive on the site, I haven't actually written one yet . I am in the process of doing that, but there's one part of the game that hit me ridiculously hard emotionally, so I'm struggling to find a way to write about it without giving away both spoilers and talking in too much depth about what I need to talk about. But that's my stupid problem to have right? 😂 I really did enjoy the first part of the event that I did actively get involved in though, and I'll try and throw a list together and join in with the Fall one too, as I do always love making my backlog smaller alongside so many of you awesome folks! Huge thanks as always to @MidnightDragon - for just constantly being the encouraging and awesome person that you always are with these challenges. It doesn't go unnoticed, or underappreciated. So thanks again for helping to keep us all motivated! You deserve every bit of thanks! See you all in the next one everyone, and congratulations again to you all!
  2. Some Apes Escaped, I Captured Them, And Got Myself A Lovely New Platinum Platinum #360 Ape Escape (PS4) No Ape Can Escape! Collect all other Ape Escape Trophies. A Few Trophy Stats Platinum Earned - 8 July 2022: 2:01:23 AM Time Taken to Platinum - 11 hours, 34 minutes, 30 seconds Platinum Rarity - 41.06% Trophy Number - #17,130 You know what I always say (well, those that have read anything of mine, will) – sometimes a little trip down memory lane isn’t the worst thing in the world. Sometimes it can be the healthiest of reminders, of why you enjoyed something to begin with. Did Ape Escape scratch that itch? I guess we’ll find out the further we get into this review. When Ape Escape, a game I was incredibly fond of when I was younger released with PlayStation Plus Premium, I jumped at the chance to explore the game once more, and add a shiny new platinum to the collection at the same time. Don’t get me wrong here – I absolutely enjoyed my time with this game, but I did get the feeling a few times that “Some things perhaps ought to stay in the past” ironically, it’s actually some fairly small factors that made me think that, and we’ll get to those shortly, and realistically if you aren’t playing the version that I played they might not even remotely be a factor. So with that bit of bluster out of the way, let’s kick this off properly shall we? Ape Escape, released all the way back in 1999, and was developed by Japan Studio; the game itself is somewhat of a unique platformer and collectathon hybrid. It utilises some of the most unique and innovative functions of the Dual Shock controller around the time of the games release too, and when I say innovative, that is absolutely not an understatement, it really does do just that – innovate. You take the role of Spike, as you set out to chase down an armada of brain-washed monkeys (I’m going to be using helmet monkeys from now on, just because I enjoy it) turned loose by the hyper intelligent and famous white haired monkey Spectre. Your goal is to travel to various time periods and recapture the monkeys. That seems like a really simple description, but that is pretty much what constitutes as the story basis here. Ape Escape is also fairly unique, in that the game plays ever so slightly differently depending on the region copy of the game that you happened to be in possession of. In my case, the UK copy, the protagonist is still named Spike, however, the professor’s female assistant is called Katie, instead of Natalie, as she is in the US version – Spikes best friend in my version is named Buzz instead of Jake too. Not only that, but the UK and US versions have entirely separate voice acting. This is, in all honesty, my main gripe with the game, so I’ll deal with it now. Let’s be clear here, whether you like the voice acting or not, it will not in any way detract from your ability to have an enjoyable time with this game. But I do think there’s a small chance it’ll grate on you a fair amount. Here’s the thing – and I have a bit of a confession to make here, when I was much younger, I’d often skip the cutscenes if I wasn’t hat interested, to get to the game a bit faster. So in truth, I don’t feel like I’ve probably ever, truly, experienced the “Story” of Ape Escape. Fast forward to 2022, and there I was experiencing it, thinking “Wow, that is some of those most stilted and awkward line delivery that I have ever heard.” Not from one character, but from practically all of them. It’s not a really big issue, just something you find yourself occasionally eye rolling at, before getting your net out, shrugging your shoulders and catching yourself some more helmet monkeys. As I alluded to earlier, one of the most unique features of Ape Escape is the way in which it utilises the Dual Shock features. Incredibly well too, because when I initially played the game around the time of release I distinctly remember being blown away by the fact that the thumb-sticks could be clicked in to act as a button in their own right, or the fact that rotating the analogue sticks when holding the Sky Flyer, would cause you to essentially hover like a propeller. I think what really does stand out though, is that whilst these things are fairly groundbreaking, and they absolutely were– they also work mechanically on a fundamental level. Ape Escape deserves all of the credit for this. As there have been plenty of examples where an innovative idea, does not always translate into a mechanically sound one. The catching of those helmet monkeys – and the general all round innovation of Ape Escape’s gameplay really is where it shines, and that, I think, is where the majority of the praise should be heaped. In a sense, it’s rather simple conceptually. You enter a level, catch a set amount of monkeys and then leave. It never is quite that simple though, as each individual helmet monkey possesses its own set of characteristics and stats. The helmet also contains an alarm which when triggered; either sends the monkeys into a violent frenzy, or a desperate panic. You’ll also gradually learn that certain characteristics of the monkey’s clothing, will also translate to a slightly different behaviour type, so there’s usually a specific way to approach each one. The further you get into the game, the more advanced the strategy you might need to utilise to catch said monkey. To aid you in your pursuit of the helmet monkeys, you’re afforded several gadgets, which aid in both solving puzzles to progress the individual levels and giving you an easier time when capturing the pesky hairy critters. These range objects like a net to actually capture said monkeys, a Stun Club, to help subdue the monkeys momentarily, making them easier to capture, a Hula-Hoop type device, which allows you to traverse faster. My personal favourite was the Sky Flyer, an object which simply looks like a two sided boat paddle, but affords you the chance to traverse the levels faster and more efficiently. Access to this really does open up a whole raft of possibilities to the player. One of the more unique areas of Ape Escape is actually in its level design – I think you could both praise this and criticise it in almost equal measure, if you were inclined to do so. I’m not going to, because I think contextually it actually works very cleverly. As one of the main plot elements of Ape Escape is time travel, as such, time zones, and splintered pieces of other times, appear where they shouldn’t. I think that really works in the context of the levels, as some of the things you encounter can be a genuine surprise to encounter them in the specific places that you do. As each level is fairly small and discrete the designers had a pretty good opportunity to really experiment with some ideas. Not every single one of them works, but I appreciate the effort in trying. I also couldn’t help but appreciate how each level is fairly non-linear and can be approached from a multitude of different directions if you wanted to do so. For a game released on PS1, then emulated for PS4 and PS5, I genuinely think this looks quite good. It’s not perfect, like with a lot of titles from this era, you can expect incredibly jagged textures and some slightly unusual stuttering on occasion, but even with that in mind – visually at least, Ape Escape has held up rather well. I really did appreciate how much smoother this specific version looked. Having played the original not too long ago, it was noticeable how much of an improvement it actually is. I’d also like to make it clear how much I appreciated the feature in the emulation, to be able to just rewind time essentially; it cuts out what might have been a really frustrating section of platforming. It’s something I didn’t feel at all bad about utilising either, having played the original so many times. One standout feature of Ape Escape that I think ought to get a little more appreciation, is in its use of sound design – whilst I’m not overly keen on the voice acting in my particular version of the game, the sound across the board in the entire game is incredibly well realised. It also has undeniable charm to it, which also contains an incredibly satisfying feeling to it. Whether it’s the sound of the net as it captures a helmet monkey or the almost instantaneous screech of fear and panic from the monkey as its helmet alarm starts to go off, it all adds together to make something very memorable. The original soundtrack for Ape Escape, supplied by Soichi Terada is an absolutely masterful one. It’s a real joy to listen to out of context too. It’s persistently upbeat, and absolutely full to the brim with energy. One aspect of it that I think is incredibly clever is the way that it changes the tempo in a situational manner. For example, the tempo of the music changes depending on whether you’re in stealth/sneaking mode, and depending on which form of either of those, the tempo will noticeably slow down, as you approach your target, which I thought was an incredibly subtle but clever touch. Would I recommend Ape Escape? Yes, I think so – it’s incredibly short, but I don’t think I was ever disinterested during it once, and I think even if you don’t have even the slightest touch of nostalgia goggles from playing it on release, there is still a very enjoyable time to be had with this game. Its trophies are pretty straightforward too. I am slightly glad you don’t have to get good scores in the mini-games, just play them. Some of those made me feel like a cascade of rocks had fallen onto my head, as I tried to figure out those controls. I do feel as if the game is worth experiencing though, even in 2022, if you’re completely new to the series. You never know it might be a whole new game series you find an appreciation for, and how can that ever be a bad thing. Which I suppose means I ought to finally get and play Ape Escape 2 at some point, as it’s been on my backlog for quite a long time now. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- That's pretty bad, that it took me a full month to actually review this one - I'd better start picking the pace up again from here on out, but I guess that'll happen when it happens. I can't force stuff like that. But it's nice to finally have Ape Escape reviewed at last. I'm getting there thanks - no need to apologise for replying late either, it's not like I haven't been bad for that lately myself. I appreciate that you actually take the time to do it. It's been nice getting some gaming back in here and there though - I've also been playing Resident Evil Revelations 2 a lot, which has been absolutely amazing, but you won't see that show up, because I already played it years ago. I actually wouldn't mind going back and playing the Ezio trilogy in Italian, with some English subtitles on, I really love those games anyway, so being able to hear them how they should probably authentically sound would probably be incredibly cool. Plus, it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world to want to replay Assassin's Creed Brotherhood ONE more time. So I could do the other two as well Having been playing GoW fairly recently myself, it's quite tougj to imagine that game specifically in any language other than English, I'm sure it works in other languages, but Christopher Judge is just so good as Kratos I struggle to be able to imagine anyone else's voice coming from Kratos. I'll have to check it out then, I did see it very cheap on Amazon recently, and I forgot to buy it, so I might have to give Melody of Memories a nice little look, just to see what's up really. And you know, it'd be nice to have all of the Kingdom Hearts platinum's again (well without stacking anyway) at least until KHIV releases in Two thousand and never 😂 - I think we'll have a long wait for that one. Thank you! I'm trying to get some of those pesky stragglers on my backlog ticked off, and I've now done all the hard stuff in Dishonoured, and I've got one pesky trophy left in AC Revelations, so I really ought to dive back in, and give that a go at some point soon. That's usually what I try to do as well - around the time I was playing Ape Escape I had like a pretty big patch of just burnout and really not good feeling for a while, so I kind of just left off writing it for a while, so when I returned to write that Ape Escape review (that this reply is attached to ironically) I did struggle a bit to remember where my head was at with it. I totally agree with you though! That it's better to just write about them fairly soon afterwards, otherwise you find yourself less and less likely to actually want to do it. It was definitely an experience that's for sure! I can see why you probably decided to give up with some of the really silly requirements for the 100%, they are a little bit unusual and obnoxious some of them! Thanks I'm glad I managed to do it too, ultimately - but unfortunately the two times I attempted doing Red Dead Redemption's online portion in the last 6 years have been pretty disastrous, some of it this time around was alright. But yeah, one trophy in particular really drove me a little crazy. Even having one of my favourite people in the whole world, along with me for the ride didn't actually make it any easier not to find the experience incredibly sapping. I'm glad it's one less horrible set of online trophies to have to worry about!
  3. Platinum #360 Ape Escape (PS4) No Ape Can Escape! Collect all other Ape Escape Trophies. You know what I always say (well, those that have read anything of mine, will) – sometimes a little trip down memory lane isn’t the worst thing in the world. Sometimes it can be the healthiest of reminders, of why you enjoyed something to begin with. Did Ape Escape scratch that itch? I guess we’ll find out the further we get into this review. When Ape Escape, a game I was incredibly fond of when I was younger released with PlayStation Plus Premium, I jumped at the chance to explore the game once more, and add a shiny new platinum to the collection at the same time. Don’t get me wrong here – I absolutely enjoyed my time with this game, but I did get the feeling a few times that “Some things perhaps ought to stay in the past” ironically, it’s actually some fairly small factors that made me think that, and we’ll get to those shortly, and realistically if you aren’t playing the version that I played they might not even remotely be a factor. So with that bit of bluster out of the way, let’s kick this off properly shall we? Ape Escape, released all the way back in 1999, and was developed by Japan Studio; the game itself is somewhat of a unique platformer and collectathon hybrid. It utilises some of the most unique and innovative functions of the Dual Shock controller around the time of the games release too, and when I say innovative, that is absolutely not an understatement, it really does do just that – innovate. You take the role of Spike, as you set out to chase down an armada of brain-washed monkeys (I’m going to be using helmet monkeys from now on, just because I enjoy it) turned loose by the hyper intelligent and famous white haired monkey Spectre. Your goal is to travel to various time periods and recapture the monkeys. That seems like a really simple description, but that is pretty much what constitutes as the story basis here. Ape Escape is also fairly unique, in that the game plays ever so slightly differently depending on the region copy of the game that you happened to be in possession of. In my case, the UK copy, the protagonist is still named Spike, however, the professor’s female assistant is called Katie, instead of Natalie, as she is in the US version – Spikes best friend in my version is named Buzz instead of Jake too. Not only that, but the UK and US versions have entirely separate voice acting. This is, in all honesty, my main gripe with the game, so I’ll deal with it now. Let’s be clear here, whether you like the voice acting or not, it will not in any way detract from your ability to have an enjoyable time with this game. But I do think there’s a small chance it’ll grate on you a fair amount. Here’s the thing – and I have a bit of a confession to make here, when I was much younger, I’d often skip the cutscenes if I wasn’t hat interested, to get to the game a bit faster. So in truth, I don’t feel like I’ve probably ever, truly, experienced the “Story” of Ape Escape. Fast forward to 2022, and there I was experiencing it, thinking “Wow, that is some of those most stilted and awkward line delivery that I have ever heard.” Not from one character, but from practically all of them. It’s not a really big issue, just something you find yourself occasionally eye rolling at, before getting your net out, shrugging your shoulders and catching yourself some more helmet monkeys. As I alluded to earlier, one of the most unique features of Ape Escape is the way in which it utilises the Dual Shock features. Incredibly well too, because when I initially played the game around the time of release I distinctly remember being blown away by the fact that the thumb-sticks could be clicked in to act as a button in their own right, or the fact that rotating the analogue sticks when holding the Sky Flyer, would cause you to essentially hover like a propeller. I think what really does stand out though, is that whilst these things are fairly groundbreaking, and they absolutely were– they also work mechanically on a fundamental level. Ape Escape deserves all of the credit for this. As there have been plenty of examples where an innovative idea, does not always translate into a mechanically sound one. The catching of those helmet monkeys – and the general all round innovation of Ape Escape’s gameplay really is where it shines, and that, I think, is where the majority of the praise should be heaped. In a sense, it’s rather simple conceptually. You enter a level, catch a set amount of monkeys and then leave. It never is quite that simple though, as each individual helmet monkey possesses its own set of characteristics and stats. The helmet also contains an alarm which when triggered; either sends the monkeys into a violent frenzy, or a desperate panic. You’ll also gradually learn that certain characteristics of the monkey’s clothing, will also translate to a slightly different behaviour type, so there’s usually a specific way to approach each one. The further you get into the game, the more advanced the strategy you might need to utilise to catch said monkey. To aid you in your pursuit of the helmet monkeys, you’re afforded several gadgets, which aid in both solving puzzles to progress the individual levels and giving you an easier time when capturing the pesky hairy critters. These range objects like a net to actually capture said monkeys, a Stun Club, to help subdue the monkeys momentarily, making them easier to capture, a Hula-Hoop type device, which allows you to traverse faster. My personal favourite was the Sky Flyer, an object which simply looks like a two sided boat paddle, but affords you the chance to traverse the levels faster and more efficiently. Access to this really does open up a whole raft of possibilities to the player. One of the more unique areas of Ape Escape is actually in its level design – I think you could both praise this and criticise it in almost equal measure, if you were inclined to do so. I’m not going to, because I think contextually it actually works very cleverly. As one of the main plot elements of Ape Escape is time travel, as such, time zones, and splintered pieces of other times, appear where they shouldn’t. I think that really works in the context of the levels, as some of the things you encounter can be a genuine surprise to encounter them in the specific places that you do. As each level is fairly small and discrete the designers had a pretty good opportunity to really experiment with some ideas. Not every single one of them works, but I appreciate the effort in trying. I also couldn’t help but appreciate how each level is fairly non-linear and can be approached from a multitude of different directions if you wanted to do so. For a game released on PS1, then emulated for PS4 and PS5, I genuinely think this looks quite good. It’s not perfect, like with a lot of titles from this era, you can expect incredibly jagged textures and some slightly unusual stuttering on occasion, but even with that in mind – visually at least, Ape Escape has held up rather well. I really did appreciate how much smoother this specific version looked. Having played the original not too long ago, it was noticeable how much of an improvement it actually is. I’d also like to make it clear how much I appreciated the feature in the emulation, to be able to just rewind time essentially; it cuts out what might have been a really frustrating section of platforming. It’s something I didn’t feel at all bad about utilising either, having played the original so many times. One standout feature of Ape Escape that I think ought to get a little more appreciation, is in its use of sound design – whilst I’m not overly keen on the voice acting in my particular version of the game, the sound across the board in the entire game is incredibly well realised. It also has undeniable charm to it, which also contains an incredibly satisfying feeling to it. Whether it’s the sound of the net as it captures a helmet monkey or the almost instantaneous screech of fear and panic from the monkey as its helmet alarm starts to go off, it all adds together to make something very memorable. The original soundtrack for Ape Escape, supplied by Soichi Terada is an absolutely masterful one. It’s a real joy to listen to out of context too. It’s persistently upbeat, and absolutely full to the brim with energy. One aspect of it that I think is incredibly clever is the way that it changes the tempo in a situational manner. For example, the tempo of the music changes depending on whether you’re in stealth/sneaking mode, and depending on which form of either of those, the tempo will noticeably slow down, as you approach your target, which I thought was an incredibly subtle but clever touch. Would I recommend Ape Escape? Yes, I think so – it’s incredibly short, but I don’t think I was ever disinterested during it once, and I think even if you don’t have even the slightest touch of nostalgia goggles from playing it on release, there is still a very enjoyable time to be had with this game. Its trophies are pretty straightforward too. I am slightly glad you don’t have to get good scores in the mini-games, just play them. Some of those made me feel like a cascade of rocks had fallen onto my head, as I tried to figure out those controls. I do feel as if the game is worth experiencing though, even in 2022, if you’re completely new to the series. You never know it might be a whole new game series you find an appreciation for, and how can that ever be a bad thing. Which I suppose means I ought to finally get and play Ape Escape 2 at some point, as it’s been on my backlog for quite a long time now.
  4. Thanks man.... and I'm offensively late replying.... AGAIN. Thankfully that emotional chaos, has calmed down now, and things are mostly back to normal. Not gonna lie though, I'm intrigued by the image of me stomping around England using Bicycles as baseball bats! 😂 That's still six words more than any Transistor review I've ever written.... but I'm seriously considering writing one myself (and yes I've got a lot of catching up to do with everyone's threads, which I will 100% do)... But there is someone I'd really like to play Transistor, so maybe me writing a review of it that's nice and spoiler free might nudge them in the direction of experiencing that amazing game! Pyre really does look amazing doesn't it, and I suspect we'll both love it - I think something Doc said last year to me was pretty on the money, that it's probably better to just go back and do Bastion before going to the more recent ones. It's really good, and I loved Bastion so much, but it doesn't feel quite the same as something like Transistor does. And what I've heard Pyre does, despite still being incredibly good. Yeah you said it perfectly man! There are a bunch of other open world games that I'd like to get to before those as well, so I'm not ruling out ever playing them, I just don't really have all that much interest in them myself. Yep! The Ezio trilogy gets a very healthy endorsement from me! That's cool man! I know you're not a big Doctor Who guy or anything, so I appreciate you slapping a comment on now, or giving it a read. I guess McCoy would have been The Doctor when you were pretty young, so yeah makes sense he's the one you would have seen. I do like that you sort of see Sylv as the de-facto canon Doctor for you. Especially as he's also a Scot. I really like his Doctor, and I'm honestly a little sad he's outside the top 5, but past that point it's like the tiniest margins of preference between each one. I really like 2/3's of his era of the show, the first series is a pretty awkward transitional period, but his final two are really good, with some really interesting and thoughtful stories, that were heading ina pretty interesting direction. So it's kind of a shame the damage had been done by that point, and the viewing figures were at an all time low. Thanks so much though - I'm really glad these fun little Doctor Who'y posts are still interesting to read, so that's really awesome of you to say! And for you not to call your lawyers about the slight joke title about the rankings, not that I thought you'd mind 😉😂
  5. 20220816-010202.jpg

     

    I get a special and unique tingly feeling in my stomach whenever I come across the COMI font in the wild :yay:

  6. Sideshows and Curiosities #4 Professor RJ's Ultra Science-Fiction Ranking of Doctor Who... Doctor's, Part 2 Right then, are we all sitting comfortably? The two or three of you that are actually interested in seeing how this list ends up! If you're not, I obviously don't mind, I just think I needed to write something completely game free, to kind of ease myself back in so to speak. So why not return to writing about probably my favourite show of all time! So I won't dilly-dally around too much, if you want to specifically find out what my criteria are, and how I'm ranking them, you can find it in the first part, and if you want to specifically find that, go to the first page on this thread, and look at the second post, you'll find it in the Sideshows and Curiosities section.After all, I do basically use the first 2 posts of this thread as my unofficial contents page 😂 Remember, these are all my opinions, I'm not suggesting they are fact... You can feel free to agree or disagree as much as you like... I'm sure I'll be 'wrong' on more than a few of these! Let's see how the list is shaping up so far shall we? #15: The Thirteenth Doctor - Jodie Whittaker #14: The Shalka Doctor - Richard E. Grant #13: The War Doctor - John Hurt #12: The Eleventh Doctor - Matt Smith #11: The Fifth Doctor - Peter Davison Right.... in the words of Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart.... " Well..... here we go again" #10 The Sixth Doctor Colin Baker (1984-1986) "In all my travelling throughout the universe, I have battled against evil, against power-mad conspirators. I should have stayed here. The oldest civilisation: decadent, degenerate, and rotten to the core. Power-mad conspirators, Daleks, Sontarans, Cybermen - they're still in the nursery compared to us. Ten million years of absolute power. That's what it takes to be really corrupt." Oh Colin.... You poor amazing, underappreciated actor, and Doctor, you...... Just look at that costume, how garish is that? Colin Baker's time as The Doctor whilst not all terrible is definitely approaching the lowest of low points in shows history, and the saddest part about it, is that it wasn't his fault at all. So whilst almost all of Colin Bakers best moments actually take part in audio adventures, those performances are so brilliant, that I'm putting him above some of the other Doctors just for that reason alone. Colin Baker is a real revelation on Audio, he was afforded the chance to play the part he wanted to - his Doctor can be a little dark, but him, more than any other Doctor is most proud of their superior intellect, he can be a little pretentious and pompous about it, but Colin Baker plays that aspect so well, and something he never got to explore on screen too much was how much he cared about his companions - he just has an emotional wall up to stop the hurt when things go south, and I love the way they've explored that a few times on audio. If I was going to recommend one Audio Drama to listen to with Colin, it'd be Davros, that story explores the relationship between Davros and the Doctor in a really thoughtful and unusual way, and Colin's dejected voice when he says "We're not friends.... Davros" with the slightest edge of disgust has always stuck with me. Colin Baker is a more than capable actor, he's really good in fact. From what I understand, from his own words, he just never quite got to play the part the way the he wanted to. He wanted a darker edge to his Doctor, but what he was given to work with as a character, was an abrasive 'C' word... yes, the one this site censors, not a cactus or a cauliflower. It's an interesting idea on a conceptual level, the problem is, it only really works on a conceptual level. The idea was admirable to try and do something different. The problem is, going from an incredibly mild mannered, but well meaning Doctor in the Fifth Doctor, to an abrasive and unlikeable character, which immediately tries to murder the person he just risked his own existence to save, just feels wrong. Even his opening lines are pretty abrasive... His first lines were, after Peri's stunned reaction to his change of appearance of "I-I-I-I,,,,,,," only for the Doctor to immediately reply with: " That's three I's in one breath — makes you sound a rather egotistical young lady." That line isn't in the pursuit of humour, just an unnecessary thing to say, and so unlike the character the audience grew to know at that point - whatever incarnation they happen to be in. The people in charge of the show at the time seemed to think people wanted to see The Doctor and his friends arguing endlessly, but throughout the history of the show it has been abundantly clear that the best and most dynamic pairings are the ones that get on. Plus Colin's second theme tune, is one of my favourite versions of the theme to ever exist, it's just so obnoxiously and unapologetically 80's and I love it.... I guess i'll hold off on details until I do Profeessor RJ's Ultra Science -Fiction Ranking of, Doctor Who Themes.... 😂 (Don't think that I won't!) #9 The Twelfth Doctor Peter Capaldi (2013-2017) "There's no such thing as the Doctor. I’m just a bloke in a box telling stories. I didn’t come here because I'm ashamed. A bit of shame never hurt anyone. I came… because you're sick and you asked. And because sometimes, on a good day, if I try very hard… I’m not some old Time Lord who ran away. I'm the Doctor." There are a lot of quotes I could have pulled out over Peter Capaldi's tenure as The Doctor - but that one in particular, I think will always resonate with me. Fundamentally it's what still gives me faith in this nearly sixty year old show. The Doctor as a character has always been a man/woman eternally haunted and tormented by their own actions, but has and always will be a good person. So for someone who lives inside their own mind far too often, and dwells on so many things I can't control, that's a huge part of why I gravitate so much towards that character. Peter Capaldi's Doctor is one that they explore those ideas with more regularly than others. He can so often be found asking his companions: "Am I a good man?" Like he knows that he is, but he needs that reminder, because sometimes living with that constant mental pain just makes you doubt that you even are. I'm not suggesting I'm an amazing individual like The Doctor, I barely have an ego as it is, but I do know that I'm a good person, so when those doubts start to creep in they can really turn you inside out. Ahem... back to Doctor Who, right? I feel similarly about Peter Capaldi's time as The Doctor, as I do with Colin Baker's, you get glimpses of brilliance, but it's never quite what it should have been. And he could have been so much more. I think his relationship with Clara, across their two series together, is incredibly toxic. Where Capaldi really shines is in his final Series, where they seemed to finally have a handle on what they wanted his character to be. However, One of my favourite episodes of the entire show came from Peter Capaldi's era of the show. Heaven Sent. If you're a fan of just good quality television, then this one is worth watching. You can kind of watch it in a bubble too, as the following episode is an absolute dreckfest. Heaven Sent however, is a masterfully written and directed piece of television - and is such a powerful and beautiful metaphor for the long healing process that goes hand in hand with dealing with both a loss, and the internalisation of those thoughts... and how chipping away at those feelings over time is the only way to really feel better about it. I'm looking forward to Peter Capaldi dipping into the audio adventure range at some point in the future - because I'd love for his Doctor to get explored in some greater depth like Colin Baker has been able to do with that medium. #8 The First Doctor William Hartnell - (1963-1966, 1972-1973) Richard Hurndall (1983) David Bradley (2017) "One day, I shall come back. Yes, I shall come back. Until then, there must be no regrets, no tears, no anxieties. Just go forward in all your beliefs and prove to me that I am not mistaken in mine. Goodbye, Susan. Goodbye, my dear" Now we're into the territory where it's not just a simple case of "I like this one, more than another one" We're kind of into the very small margins of preference territory, because 60's Doctor Who is one of my very favourite eras of the show. Time for a bit for a bit of an audio visual accompaniment I think..... That quote above is one of the most powerful moments in the entire history of the show.... And exemplifies exactly why The Doctor is such a good character - never fearing about hurting himself in the pursuit of someone else's happiness, or their needs. To give a little context, this is The Doctors final moments with his granddaughter (for a long time at least) and William Hartnell gives such a powerhouse performance when he has to do what he thinks his best, and say goodbye. It's such a brilliant moment, for what was probably the most stoic incarnation of all of The Doctor's.... I've always loved the small subtle bits of acting from William Hartnell in that scene, where you can just see a bit of pain etched on his face, as he begins to speak, like the slightest hesitation, to say the thing he has to say but the thing he doesn't want to say. The bit I like the most is actually, the moment where he hastily turns off the scanner and dematerialises his time ship, in one quick movement, because he just can't stand to dwell on that pain any more. In the context of his character, it's a brilliant little moment. It does feel a little wrong, that The First Doctor, is actually only #8 on the list, but I really do love The First Doctor. He has such excellent character growth across his time as the character too. Going from a curmudgeonly old man who is quite self serving, to the character he would eventually establish and grow into over time, it really is quite the noticeable difference if you watch his era (or what still exists of it) chronologically. I suspect if he wasn't plagued by Missing Episodes, Hartnell would make it higher up this list, because William Hartnell's dual role in The Massacre of Saint Bartholomew's Eve, is tremendously good just on audio so to have some visual representation would be wonderful. But unfortunately not a single frame of footage survives, just an audio track, and some tele-snaps (if there are even any of those I believe). #7 The Ninth Doctor Christoper Ecclestone (2005) "Rose, before I go, I just want to tell you you were fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. And do you know what? So was I!" Christopher Ecclestone's tenure as The Ninth Doctor is one of the biggest what ifs in the entire history of the show. He was so brilliant, but his time as The Doctor was so fleeting lasting only one full series. It's a real shame, and that is the only reason that he isn't higher up on this list, because he really is brilliant. You could probably describe the Ninth Doctor best as The PTSD Doctor. His part to play in "The Time War" is one of the most prevalent aspects of his character. It haunts every fibre of his being, and I think Ecclestone plays that part of the character to such great effect. When I wrote about The War Doctor in the previous post, Ecclestone's Doctor is the next incarnation, so he carries all the weight of his actions, and they are much more recent for him than any other Doctor. I think Christopher Ecclestone's portrayal of The Doctor is also one of the reasons that the show was a resounding success on its return to Television after a gap of sixteen years. It adapted and it changed, and he was a huge part of that. The newer series of the show is a much more simplified one, and to be perfectly honest they are completely different types of show, but Ecclestone's infectious energy is exactly what the show needed. Considering how short his tenure as the Doctor actually was, he managed to create so many amazing moments as that character. Like there are so many that I could post, that I'd love to just post here, to demonstrate exactly why he was so brilliant. this might be one of The Doctor's I revisit at some point if I revise the rankings after listening to his audio adventures. It's a controversial opinion, but I much prefer The Ninth Doctor and Rose, to the pairing of The Tenth Doctor and Rose, there is just a little more of a simplicity to their relationship, that you don't get with Ten and Rose. #6 The Seventh Doctor Sylvester McCoy (1987-1989, 1996) "Every great decision creates ripples, like a huge boulder dropped in a lake. The ripples merge and rebound off the banks in unforeseeable ways. The heavier the decision, the larger the waves, the more uncertain the consequences." Man I hate that Sylv is sitting outside of the top 5..... I just love his Doctor so much, but the next five I love that little bit more. The Seventh Doctor was my favourite growing up, and I'm still very fond of him now. He has a really endearing impish, and almost clown-like quality to him. The thing you don't notice as a younger person, is how dark his Doctor is alongside that. I may or may not own a few of the components of his costume too, not the original ones obviously. But as some of you know, I'm partial to a hat or two,and those trousers are pretty swish too 😂 I really appreciate his Doctor as a result of that, as an adult. There's a real darkness bubbling under the surface with him, he's manipulative and he's enigmatic too. But his heart is in the right place. The sad thing about The Seventh Doctor's tenure, is that the show got rested by the BBC just as the show was starting to have a mini-renaissance. Some of my favourite stories in the show come straight from this era, and the script for Remembrance of the Daleks, is one of the finest pieces of writing to ever grace the show. The fact that a story like that is not the 25th Anniversary story, when the pretty abysmal Silver Nemesis is, just feels a little wrong. There is so much I enjoy about it though, The Doctor and Ace's student/teacher/friend relationship is so well realised, and their chemistry is electric! It's so obvious why Sophie and Sylvester have remained friends for the last 35 years. I would love to have seen how the show would have moved forward with Andrew Cartmel and Ben Aaronovitch taking the show into a new era, which I believe was the plan, much like Barry Letts and Terrence Dicks did in the late 60's and early 70's.There was real scope for potential there. And when you look at how the show decided to tell stories when it was revived in 2005, it used a blueprint eerily similar to the way Aaronovitch and Cartmel decided to structure their writing. Doctor Who under them became just as important to focus on The Doctors travelling partner as anything else. Not only that, but Andrew Cartmel had such an interesting take on what he thought the Doctor should be, and he really knew how to get the performances out of McCoy, when tweaking the dialogue in his job as script editor. The Seventh Doctor was also "Technically" the current Doctor, when I got into Doctor Who... So I suppose by default, that makes him "My Doctor" I remember even when I understood what regeneration was conceptually in the show, how upset I was when his Doctor died, and regenerated in the Paul McGann TV Movie. It's some really well directed television. A traveller in space and time getting gunned down, and then dying on an operating table, as a result of complications from surgery, is one of the most harrowing things I remember watching. It all felt a little "too real" I could not watch it for years and years, but Sylvester McCoy acted that scene fantastically. As a terrified alien, being exposed to human medicine, but not quite knowing what's going to happen. I also love that The Seventh Doctor is the one to punctuate the final scene in Classic Doctor Who, with some of the most beautifully apt prose from Andrew Cartmel, it's so fitting for both the character and the universe. Which I think is as good of a place as any to leave this part of the rankings. "There are worlds out there where the sky is burning, and the sea's asleep, and the rivers dream; people made of smoke and cities made of song. Somewhere there's danger, somewhere there's injustice, and somewhere else the tea's getting cold. Come on, Ace. We've got work to do." --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Well that was nice to get written, I have no idea when I do the next one... or the next "Anything" but it was nice to write something and start to feel a bit more positive again! I'll catch you whenever the next one is folks!
  7. Thanks man! I really appreciate that... and I know you would.... and seriously, that does mean a heck of a lot. I'm actually okay, mentally, or close to it? If that makes sense, like I feel in a much more positive place I think. I just have that lingering burnout feeling now, which I'm not quite used to, where I don't quite feel back to where I was, but I'm getting there. I'm just trying to be more and more proactive each new day and seeing where that goes, and so far it seems to be going alright, so hopefully "normal service will resume" at some point, I should think 😂 Thanks for being absolutely awesome about it though dude, it really is appreciated - I've not exactly been a barrel laughs the last couple of weeks. So hopefully that can change going forward.
  8. He actually isn't far off is he..... and I have got a beard right now, but not a goatee haha! And now you'll never look at that scene where he's gliding along the floor looking somewhere he shouldn't, the same way ever again 😂 Quite swish isn't it, the suit I mean! You know damn well I probably could have hypothetically bodied like that entire group of people behind Kiryu the way I was feeling at times the last couple of weeks.... So I'm glad I've chilled out a bit now. It WILL be good.... Just you know, you and I sometimes have trouble saying nice things about ourselves! Me more so I think, but you ought to give yourself more credit, I've been looking forward to that Transistor review ever since you booted the game up for the first time, because I was sure you'd do that game a particular justice, I just have a hunch! I'm looking to end the year with just Hades left as well - maybe even finished too, but I really ought to get and start Pyre because that looks so amazing. Glad I'm not the only one that feels like that every time they see Odyssey go on sale, every time that I see the one with all the DLC go on sale, I'm like should I? I don't know what I'll make of that game, like there's so many people who's opinions I absolutely trust, that have basically given me the opposite impression of what they think I'll get from the game. The Ezio trilogy is great though, all three of them, I'm about wrapping up my trophyless replay of Revelations and I've had a really good time with it, so I hope you will if/when you do dive into those in the future! I'm glad THAT was the thing you chose to quote from that specific bit of that reply... because I read that back and realised how dark that read... Oh well, I'll just leave it, it's not an inaccurate description either. I'd like to think I'd be Orphanage-savin Kiryu for sure...Maybe without all the self righteousness Kiryu does and the head cracking... I'll just stick to the whole BIG HEART thing.... until it inevitably explodes or something 😂 Oh wow! Actually yes that does, massively actually! I was, not put off per se, just a bit cautious I's say about Sayonara Wild Hearts, because I really cannot emphasise enough, my sheer ineptitude when it comes to rhythm games... so for you to say that, that has actually massively helped! So thank you Heather, like really, I'll have to pick it up and get playing I think!
  9. Thanks dude! It feels nice to be back, hopefully I won't go into super negative mode for a little while now. Hey I mean that's fair enough about The Artful Escape, we can't all love the same things.I think that's one of those games where you've got to be pretty invested in the ideas that it's trying to present for it to resonate with you a lot, because I guess functionally, outside of the story, and the overarching message, it does have pretty minimalist gameplay, I loved that side of it, but I'm certainly not going to tell you you're wrong for not enjoying it. You did pique my interest with Bloodstained though, so I might have to give that one a look, especially as I'm on PS+ Extra still!
  10. It's Been A While.... Hasn't it. I like to think most of the time, I try and let things just wash over me..... a bit like this guy....Any of you that know what I look like, and some of you do, probably can picture that even easier now haha 😂.... As a general rule, I'm just incredibly laid back, but even I have my limits it seems .... So here I am, finally returning, not fully back, yet. After some major burnout, but getting to the point, where I feel like I can start to interact a little more publicly again, without coming across in an incredibly toxic way, which I was genuinely worried about. Something really changed recently.... I can barely go into any of it, I don't want to, it's a multitude of different things, and I think they just built up. Any of you reading this, I'm sure you're aware by now that my head can be a pretty dark place on occasions. Lately it's been a little darker than even I can capably handle. Where once I felt like "The Dude",,,,, occasionally I've been feeling like this...... Anger and I have not been firm friends for an incredibly long time, and we will never be rekindling that relationship so long as I have the ability to control it - but recently I've been feeling that awful feeling come bubbling up on occasion. I think a huge part of that is that I've got possibly the worst gaming burnout I've ever experienced. I think that was partly my own fault for playing so many games that involved online trophies. It's a shame though, because gaming is usually a pretty good form of escapism for me, so it's been a bit of a weird one the last few weeks. I'm slowly getting out the other side of it though, and I appreciate so much, those of you who have been willing to lend an ear, or just generally be supportive during the last couple of weeks. Words don't really do justice to how much I appreciate it, but thank you so much. I am sorry about the incredibly long gap between replies though - I don't expect any of you to really be offended. You're all too awesome for that, I'm not quite at the point where I'm ready to start posting and writing reviews again yet - but I am going to post something later.... Which is Part 2 of my Doctor Who rankings, just because I want to cut loose and write something fun. It's probably not what a lot of you want to read (and I'm super okay with that) but I think it's something I need to do, just to kind of get the ball rolling again, so to speak. I've got some catching up to do in all of your awesome threads too! So I'm looking forward to that one. Righty then, let's get to some SO LONG OVERDUE REPLIES!! I think it's a little ironic that the last thing I was writing was about The Artful Escape, and then I immediately suffer from crippling burnout, and whatever else has been floating around in my head recently. Thank you so much man! I really loved The Artful Escape, and I still hope as many people as possible get to experience it, because it is one of the most worthwhile and necessary experiences that you could get from a video game. I did manage to convince one other person to give it a go too, so I'll be incredibly interested to see what they think of it too.... Let's keep this "Everybody should play Artful Escape" train rolling. ....... Oh the irony of this Three weeks later I'm finally getting back to you.... Although it's only to everyone else I look like a dick.... as i's not like you and I haven't spoken loads over all of that time 😂 I think jumbles the stripper sounds like a much more likely thing to exist . But I'm not really going to explore that avenue and find out haha I need to get reading your Transistor review... I know it's there, I just haven't read it. I wanted to be in a good head space when I read it, because I love that game so much. And reading about it, will be just as much fun I think. And what will be an awesome review (I know it will be ) it deserves my full attention, not some half distracted excuse of my attention, That song at the end really did a number on me, I was exactly the same, it's one of those where exactly like you said, you just stop and take it all in. It's just so powerful. I can definitely speak for Bastion... and I'm looking forward to Pyre myself. I just remembered I actually have an E,T game.... I might throw that in my PS3 and give it a play, and review it, just for like the whole in-joke thing haha. It'd likely be a pretty funny thing to do. I'd definitely recommend at the very least playing through the Ezio Trilogy, and then go from there if you want to dip into the series a little more... but those 3 are actually very good. I am really apprehensive about the newer ones. I'm sure I'll enjoy them to some degree, but I even thought Origins was "a little too much" and that's the smallest one of the newer ones, but I guess I won't know until I try them. Thanks so much Heather! Sorry for the offensive long time to reply! I'm really Glad you enjoyed the read. . I haven't played Sayonara Wild Hearts, not yet at least, but I'm definitely up for it! I've been intrigued by it for a while, but I know it leans quite heavily on the whole rhythm games, and quite frankly they scare the shit out of me But you know - I won't know if I don't try, so I think I ought to get stuck in with that one! Because it does look awesome! So thank you for the recommendation! Especially after you said it sounded like a similar kind of experience to what I had with The Artful Escape! Thanks Doc! I love the sound of The Power of Creativity Extravaganza Pack! I think I'd really dig that haha Well thank you really, for being the one to get the ball rolling with this whole "WE LOVE THE ARTFUL ESCAPE" Praisathon, that it absoluitely deserves! So I'm happy it's starting to get more and more eyes on it, that can only be a good thing! I am so down to play Chicory at some point in the future, I loved reading your review of it, so it sounds like a must play for me some ways down the line. I think from everything you've said about it, and the whole 'visual art' exploration and the very 'other' kind of mental health aspect of it, that really intrigues me as an idea for a story to explore. Not quite Spiderman it would seem..... CripplingSadnessDesparatefeelingofpowerlessnessandBurnoutMan is more accurate right about now.... But I don't think that really has a very good Superhero ring to it to me... What would my powers be? The power of self doubt, and caring too much Don't panic by the way, I'm coming out of the other side of that, I just thought I'd lighten the mood a little. It sure does! I do love me some Infinite Ammo for those games... It actually comes in handy when you just want to replay the game and just see the story play out too. So absolutely yay for Infinite Ammo in Resident Evil games! I expect you probably got that problematic thing done by now for playing a match every 30 days! I guess now you just wait until you're on platinum numer 349 and get that bad boy unlocked... It'll be a nice one to have if it does end up being your rarest FF Platinum! Definitely, I'm just very impatient when it comes to things like that haha. Final Fantasy VII will be a nice one for you for #300 as well....and #301 haha.... I'm quite intrigued by Intergrade, so I guess I'm just going to go straight into the PS5 version I think, Looking forward to getting to it at some point though. I am actually quite glad we don't live in that universe haha. Yeah it is a bit of a shame that Sega sort of died as a console giant...... I'm glad we ended up getting Yakuza out of it though. So you know there's always upsides to everything haha, Welcome back man! I am so behind with yours it's offensive... and everyone elses! So I will be catching up. Brotherhood has always been my favourite of that Ezio trilogy, it is even more so now. I am enjoying playing Revelations a little bit at the moment though, I always liked Revelations, but I think more for how it closed out Ezio's story than anything else, so I'm looking forward to seeing if my opinion has changed on it at all. Haha it's funny you say that about Lost Archives, I always assumed Lost Archives was going to be absolute arse, because despite being a big puzzle fan,I really hated those Desmond sections in the main game.....A friend played it recently, and she was like "Rob.... you were right, this isn't fun at all" So we'll see if I end up agreeing with that haha. She said the same thing about the Impress Warren Vidic trophy, with the same amount of hilarious sarcasm as you Yep, I'll get on Assassin's Creed Valhalla.... It sounds like the best idea.... maybe I'll save it for Milestone #400? That'll cure my burnout real quick Firstly, no I'm sorry, for all of the really late replies! I think it's almost 3 weeks since I replied to anyone in here, so don't feel bad.... I'm glad you've been in full on gaming mode, and I hope you've been enjoying that too.I've been the opposite as I've barely wanted to play any games at all, but I'm getting there slowly haha. Definitely if it's the language that would most fit the game, I'll usually play it in that one. The Yakuza/ Judgment dubs are not like really bad or anything from what I've seen. They just lean into that thing I hate about English dubbing of Japanese things, and that's specifically over-pronouncing the Japanese names, but doing it in a way that still sounds so "White" haha. It's the kind of thing that like really Edgy Anime fans do sometimes, and it just makes me want to turn the volume down haha. I reckon they'll definitely end up as long ones whenever I get to actually play Persona 4 haha. I was going to ask you if you'd played the Ezio trilogy in your own language, as I expect the game would hit that much harder that way. I'm pleased you enjoyed them though! And that they still are just as enjoyable. Like I wouldn't mind actually playing the Ezio trilogy in Italian myself at some point, but it might have to be a while from now, as I'm currently at the end of replaying them, trying to move towards the last Revelations trophies I need. I'll make sure I've got an eye on the sales then... I don't want KHIII to stay at under 100% forever, if Melody of Memories is not too bad difficulty wise for a rhythm game I'll have to dive on in. As I'm fairly curious about actually playing it, and it's like, 1 extra KH platinum too. That reminds me - thank you! I have Inside to play at some point as well, and I really ought to get and do it! Dishonoured and pretty much every other video game that I try to play at the moment haha I really ought to play Stray, I'm just worried I'm not in the right headspace to really enjoy it properly. I still need to actually write a review of Ape Escape, which is not ideal, as I played it like 4 weeks ago now, so my memory might be a little hazy haha. Definitely check out The Artful Escape if you haven't already, that's such a great game! And if you love it, tell another friend and see if they'd like it too, that games deserves all the love. RDR is so weird - like I love the single player so much.... but the online made me so miserable. To the point where one of my friends basically had to privately tell me to take a break, because I was becoming really miserable and she didn't like hearing me like that haha. I'm glad it's finally at 100% though, so I can at least give it a full review at some point.
  11. Goodbye Bernard Cribbins, You Absolute Legend

     

     

    I am so glad that someone has already made one of these tributes, because I was actually thinking of making one myself.

     

    Those of you who know me well, will know I really love Doctor Who, like, so much! I also really loved Bernard Cribbins as an actor, so when I heard about his passing recently, I was more than a little gutted. Amongst the literal hundreds of amazing roles he played over his many years as an actor, his role as Wilf will forever be my favourite.

     

    I think a criminally underrated side to Bernard Cribbins as an actor, was the almost effortless way he could convey emotion with just looks. Whether that was a happy one or a sad one. He was just tremendously good at that. 

     

    9b720372f5334157b34a3d14d37a5ffb.gif

     

    I mean look at that sad old man face, just hits you right in the fells, or it does me anyway. But alongside that, he was capable of such warmth. He really was a gifted man. And there will be people all over the world talking about the things he did that particularly resonated with them, he was just that good.

     

    I have watched Doctor Who, for well over twenty-five years, and The Doctor and Wilf's relationship has just always resonated with me such a ridiculous amount for some reason.

     

    I always adored their scene in the series four finale, but it does sting a little right now haha 😂

     

    " No no. But every night, Doctor. When it gets dark, and the stars come out, I’ll look up on her behalf. I’ll look up at the sky. And think of you." 

     

    So to you Bernard Cribbins.... I say

     

    tumblr_p5wq1ts9DZ1tsfx8ro1_400.gif

     

    In less depressing news, I should you know, actually start posting some things again soon, and playing some games too! As it's been four days since I even earned a trophy. :lol:

    1. kingofbattle8174

      kingofbattle8174

       

       

      I think this is one of my favorite scenes, but really he was great on the whole End of Time mini series. 

    2. rjkclarke

      rjkclarke

      100% agree @kingofbattle8174 - That is one of my favourite scenes.... Probably in the whole show too. I've always really loved that one, they've just a pure, gentle and deep connection those two characters, and it translates on screen so well too.

       

      I actually watched that scene just before I posted the status update... That bit where the Doctor breaks a little, and stumbles over his words then goes " M-Merry Christmas Wilf" to which he just replies....... "Y-yeah, and you" where his voice cracks is just a really powerful scene.

  12. I know the event is over, and I know I didn't actually post an update, but I was playing along.... and I will only accept my badge once I actually feel like I've earned it and solved all the other puzzles! Like a total dork, I printed pretty much all of them out on paper, and have been working them out like that, I think I'm on Puzzle #6 (I'm sure I'm not the only one, so try not to be offended by the dork statement 😂). So I'm going to get cracking with that, and then probably spend an age trying to figure out that final puzzle I just want to say Vice, you deserve every single bit of credit you are getting for this, and more. This was a wonderful idea, and a wonderful event, whilst I didn't pop my head in like I should have, I have been reading along (you guys were solving these like Usain Bolt!). The amount of you put into it has been outstanding! I just thought you ought to know from my side, just in case you thought my lack of input was from a lack of enjoyment. Which is the complete opposite! I love those badges by the way! Those are amazing. The fact you made those in Microsoft Paint is nuts to me. Sometimes I struggle just to crop things effectively using that ... I hope this isn't the last time we're all busting out our sleuthing hates either!
  13. I did some things! Looks like I'm hunting down all those old completions at the moment!.... and now I need to catch up with a lot of things after another bit of inactivity!

     

    💯% Completion #393

    Assassin's Creed III (PS3)

    Ldc4936.png

     

    A Couple of Quick Thoughts!

     

    Obviously I was aiming for fastest completion with this one, clocking in at a whopping 8 years, 4 months, 1 week.

     

    Keep it up Rob! At this rate you'll have gotten the platinum in Star Ocean: The Last Hope, by the time Halley's comet returns in 2061! and I'm approaching my 71st birthday 😂 

     

    I've got to stick to my guns and shoot from the hip with this one, I only returned to the game for the two multiplayer DLC trophies I was missing, so my quickest thought is actually "Wow I'm glad I'm finally done with all of the online trophies in Assassin's Creed games."

     

    It really is nice to finally be done with the online trophies, I've done more online related things this year than I probably have in five, so it'll be nice to finally take a break for a little while.

     

    Those of you who are perpetually boosting... My hat goes off, because I genuinely don't know how you stomach it 

     

    I'm going to have to replay this one for a review, because I remember so little about Assassin's Creed III outside of the fact that Connor is about as interesting as a shoebox enthusiast, who's favourite pastime is counting the freckles on their bodies. So it'll be interesting to see if I remember anything other than "WHERE IS CHARLES LEE." Which became a running joke between one of my friends and I for years. 

     

    Then I put another game to sleep.....

     

    💯% Completion #394

    Red Dead Redemption (PS3)

    L73f9a0.png

     

    A Couple of Quick Thoughts!

     

    Again, here I am going for the speedrun 100% with a stellar almost world record equalling (if you can't tell, my tongue is planted well in my cheek) 6 years, 3 months, 3 weeks! :lol:

     

    I think I might have the take the hit, and not play anything online involved for a little while because this game tipped me over the edge a bit. You know there's a problem when you have a friend telling you in the nicest way possible " I think you need a break, it's unusual hearing you sound so miserable." 

     

    As the only trophies I had left in this one were online trophies too, yeah, this was liable to make me miserable, even alongside some genuine friends I still struggled to get excited about this.

     

    I might have to play through this one again for a review too, I actually remember a lot of it, as I replayed it not all that long ago, but I'd probably like to, just so I didn't have the online side of the game linger in my memory all too much.

     

    The Poker Ace trophy can throw itself in a rocket powered post box directly to the sun though, in theory it's not that bad. It's just mind numbingly dull. I can only blame myself though :facepalm: nobody put a gun to my head xD

     

    So that's what I've been up to! Thankfully the reviews I end up writing about the games won't sound quite so jaded, as I genuinely like both of these games. In fact I really love Red Dead Redemption!

    1. Show previous comments  13 more
    2. rjkclarke

      rjkclarke

      Haha Thanks @Joe Dubz ...... You know - I genuinely considered putting off Assassin's Creed Brotherhood for a couple more weeks, just to say it had taken me 11 years. But that would have been odd haha. 

       

      I'm going for all of those slowest completion times 😂:facepalm:, funny one was how Baker and I ended up being at the very top and in my case the very bottom for fastest 100%'s in Pure Pool, that ended up being quite a funny one!

       

      Sometimes I just get distracted, FOR YEARS apparently.

    3. Joe Dubz

      Joe Dubz

      Damn, outta rep points so I owe you one 😉

       

      But hey, that's still gotta feel really good to check things off the backlog like that... I should take notes here, as I'm sitting at a paltry 60% completion rate 😂

    4. rjkclarke

      rjkclarke

      Quote

      Damn, outta rep points so I owe you one 1f609.png

       

      Story of my life that one haha! :lol:

       

      It does feel nice to finally have them ticked off though. Half my motivation came from getting to fully review them in my checklist thread. But having a bit of a cleanup is pretty sweet too.

       

      With a profile full of as many beastly and awesome games as you have man - I don't think I'd  mind about a 60% completion rate. You've got some real bangers you could go back to if you wanted on there anyway. Which definitely helps, if you ever feel the urge.

       

      If it makes you feel any better (which I'm not assuming you felt bad either). I was sat at around 60% for ages. Then every now and then I feel the urge to plough through a load of old games and finally return to them.

       

      You've gotta go at a pace that's good for you, right? Otherwise I find it feels like I'm forcing the issue too much.

       

       

  14. My Newest Platinum Was Artful Indeed! Platinum #359 The Artful Escape (PS4) All Done Unlock all trophies A Few Trophy Stats Platinum Earned - 2 July 2022: 8:27:02 PM Time Taken to Platinum : 2 days, 4 hours, 36 minutes Platinum Rarity - 78.08% Trophy Number - #17,107 I’ll give you fair warning here, it would probably be almost infinitely harder for me to try and find something I found negative about The Artful Escape, than to just explain exactly why I thought it was brilliant (spoiler free as always, of course). I loved almost everything about The Artful Escape, so I feel quite fortunate that negativity won’t be rearing its ugly head once in this review. I played this game at an almost perfect time; I was practically offended by the lack of creativity on show in Black Mirror. As it turned out, this was a game I didn’t realise I NEEDED to play. Experiencing this game almost directly afterwards was so gratifying to see such a fantastic piece of art never once get in its own way, just content to be exactly what it needed to be. So without further ado, I’ll put on an obligatory pair of glasses – when you see how many people wear them in the game, you’ll know why. Nevertheless, I think there’s a truly special time to be had, so let’s get into it! Released in September of 2021 (and ironically probably the most recent release I’ve played in some time) developed by Beethoven & Dinosaur and published by Annapurna Interactive. The Artful Escape is a visually stunning platformer with a number of light rhythm and puzzle elements thrown in for good measure. It feels wrong to deconstruct The Artful Escape like that, but believe me; it’s far more than it initially appears from that descriptor. You take the role of creatively unfulfilled folk musician Francis Vendetti, nephew of the famed folk music sensation Johnson Vendetti (who casts an impossibly large shadow over Francis’ career) on the eve of his debut concert, with some large shoes to fill, resulting in a journey through the Cosmic Extraordinary, aboard the good ship Cosmic Lung. Meeting a plethora of colourful and interesting characters along the way, voiced by some real acting greats, such as Jason Schwartzman, Carl Weathers, Mark Strong and Lena Headey to name just a few, and they are all excellent characters and performances to varying degrees. No, I didn’t trip and fall into a tab of acid, that is indeed unusual, but more than anything, it is the beginning of an amazing, yet important journey, for both us as players and Francis as a protagonist (if you let it be, that is). The Artful Escape is, in reality, one of those video game situations where the gameplay is an accompaniment (appropriate wording considering the musical trappings) more than it is the lead vocal. The story and the sub-textual (and sometimes more overt) prevailing message, are the real main event. Something which – if you’re open to them, will likely resonate with you more than you might initially expect. It must be said – gameplay being a slightly lesser focus here, is no bad thing at all and I’ll get to the “why” of that shortly. I’ll level with you here I’m going to be fairly free flowing and unstructured (more than usual at least,) because like quite a few games I’ve played recently, this game is a phenomenal example of almost perfect symmetry between the games core components. An aspect of The Artful Escape that I truly think works phenomenally well is its universal appeal. Yes, on the surface, it is a game about a struggling musician searching for creative freedom, and a desperate inescapable and unwavering need for his own artistic expression. Yet, it’s also a fascinating exploration of how genuinely freeing it is when – as a creative – you’re truly given that independence to express yourself exactly the way you feel is best for you. That is something that can be applied to all areas of creativity, the written word, painting or drawing to not even scratch the surface of the sheer amount of inner gifts that we all possess, which can and do exist within all of us. I’m sure many of us, at some point in our lives; we’ve all heard the words “Be the best you, that you can be” or words to that effect. I really do feel that the message The Artful Escape is trying to convey, could genuinely inspire people to do just that, and I really hope that it does. It is so easy to become disillusioned, like Francis and fold in on yourself creatively, but this game, whilst fiction, of course, shows us that the creativity, and satisfaction that it gives us is always lying dormant somewhere, and that it can be one of the most liberating feelings when we discover, what exactly that is. Interestingly, I don’t feel as if your music taste really holds much relevance over whether or not you’ll have an enjoyable experience with this game. Whether you like the type of music Francis struggles to connect with, or you live for screaming guitar solos (I’m partial to both by the way). I think so many of us – on some level – can understand and appreciate how truly wondrous it can feel to be creatively fulfilled, yet also how crushing it can feel, not to be. If you haven’t felt either feeling, perhaps playing The Artful Escape might inspire to seek that feeling out, because take it from me, The Artful Escape captures that feeling as well as almost any piece of media I’ve ever experienced has managed to. Something The Artful Escape leans into very heavily is self expression, and interestingly the game gives us as players enough of a feeling of agency to decide what that truly means to us as individuals – at least I think it does anyway. Later in the experience you’re given the choice to customise your appearance, once you’ve established your new “persona.” I think this can lead to several different choices for us as players, either you embrace what you think Francis might do himself, which is perfectly valid, or Francis’ persona becomes a truer version of you, yourself. This was the direction I took, perhaps to exorcise some of my own creative daemons; Fancis became me, well me, rocking as close to a Gibson J-200 (one of Tom Petty, my favourite musician’s preferred guitars) as possible. I mentioned earlier, how the gameplay is more of an accompaniment than the main attraction. Well, much like it is in music, an accompaniment is still wholly important. I one hundred percent feel like if the gameplay was anything more than it is, the game would suffer immensely as a result. You can shred your (essentially magical) guitar at will, manipulating the environment in the process; you can run, jump and slide too. Boss fights and “Jam Pads” take the form of the Simon Says style memorisation game that many of us will be familiar with. All of that sounds simple, and it is simple – but by being so, it is exactly what it needs to be. I absolutely believe this was a deliberate choice, the simplistic gameplay allows you to focus on everything else to such an intensified degree. Had the gameplay been a little more complex, it would have been far harder to take in how breathtakingly beautiful each of the games locations are. The Artful Escape is absolutely awash with bright and colourful scenery and fantastical creatures that could only be conjured by someone’s imagination (perfect for the setting). It is an absolute visual spectacle. Each location is distinct and memorable in its own way, a constant reminder that you are on a journey. The soundtrack provided by Johnny Galvatron and Josh Abrahams is honestly breathtaking. I do not use the “G” word lightly, believe me – but the way the gameplay, the visual and the audio elements meld together are nothing short of genius. I have been listening to the soundtrack the whole time I’ve been writing this review, and I have had goosebumps several times, as the memories of those locations came flooding back. The Artful Escape has become one of my favourite game soundtracks of all time, and I don’t see that changing any time soon, it has a real almost ethereal power to it. There have been several times playing this game, where I felt huge waves of emotion just wash over me, almost relentlessly. It is more of a “wow that’s powerful” way, not an “I am overcome with such deep sorrow” kind of way. There is something almost magical about the way Francis slides down ravines, manipulating the environment as he wails away with his guitar to his heart’s content. Every little thing you do, feels like it’s directly affecting the world, and it’s a real sight to behold. I never expected a video game to be able to capture that absolutely euphoric feeling of inner peace and fulfilment, that you get in that moment (however brief it might be) that you are doing exactly what you want to be doing, and that no negative feeling in the world could take that away from you. That, ladies and gentleman, is an immensely impressive thing to be able to achieve, I just can’t overstate how much that wowed me. It is a rare and powerful thing, and I will forever be grateful to this game for reminding me of just how satisfying that can feel. Asking myself the rhetorical question of whether I recommend this seems redundant. Of course I recommend this game, incredibly highly in fact. The game is a very short experience, but it’s likely one you won’t forget in a hurry either. This game is going to stay with me for a long while; if you let it be, whilst it might be a little short,it is an absolutely beautiful experience. Yes, the trophies are easy, yes the rarity is high, but I feel like you’re massively missing out on an absolutely wonderful time if you skip over the game because those particular factors are a problem for you. This game is a genuine contender for the best game I’ve played this year, and in a sea of really great games, that really is something! -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I'm almost sad I had to stop writing there, but I almost didn't want to stop gushing about how potently powerful this games message as a whole is. This is one of those instances where a piece of art can capture your attention so much that you instantly just want almost every single person you know to want to go and play this for themselves. I love that this game has had quite the review train over the last year, one that I know isn't going to stop either 😂... This is further proof that we do listen to our friends here! @DrBloodmoney started off us off in this fantastic batch here in February, then @YaManSmevz took over with another fantastic review, and then I wrote one that's probably far too long as usual . I know I won't be the last either! Let's keep that train moving team! This game deserves as many eyes on it as possible! I say this a lot, but this is further proof, that sometimes when a friend tells you you'll like a game, you probably will. So thank you to both of you. We've got some real big contenders so far this year for game of the year, at the end of year awards 😂. And we're barely halfway done. I think I might conjure up some creative categories so as many things as possible get their day in the sun. One more to catch up on with Ape Escape, and then we're back in the " let's dig in out of old and new games trend" in the thread! Been too long since I've actually written a true classic review. Catch you in the next one folkerino's!
  15. Platinum #359 The Artful Escape (PS4) All Done Unlock all trophies I’ll give you fair warning here, it would probably be almost infinitely harder for me to try and find something I found negative about The Artful Escape, than to just explain exactly why I thought it was brilliant (spoiler free as always, of course). I loved almost everything about The Artful Escape, so I feel quite fortunate that negativity won’t be rearing its ugly head once in this review. I played this game at an almost perfect time; I was practically offended by the lack of creativity on show in Black Mirror. As it turned out, this was a game I didn’t realise I NEEDED to play. Experiencing this game almost directly afterwards was so gratifying to see such a fantastic piece of art never once get in its own way, just content to be exactly what it needed to be. So without further ado, I’ll put on an obligatory pair of glasses – when you see how many people wear them in the game, you’ll know why. Nevertheless, I think there’s a truly special time to be had, so let’s get into it! Released in September of 2021 (and ironically probably the most recent release I’ve played in some time) developed by Beethoven & Dinosaur and published by Annapurna Interactive. The Artful Escape is a visually stunning platformer with a number of light rhythm and puzzle elements thrown in for good measure. It feels wrong to deconstruct The Artful Escape like that, but believe me; it’s far more than it initially appears from that descriptor. You take the role of creatively unfulfilled folk musician Francis Vendetti, nephew of the famed folk music sensation Johnson Vendetti (who casts an impossibly large shadow over Francis’ career) on the eve of his debut concert, with some large shoes to fill, resulting in a journey through the Cosmic Extraordinary, aboard the good ship Cosmic Lung. Meeting a plethora of colourful and interesting characters along the way, voiced by some real acting greats, such as Jason Schwartzman, Carl Weathers, Mark Strong and Lena Headey to name just a few, and they are all excellent characters and performances to varying degrees. No, I didn’t trip and fall into a tab of acid, that is indeed unusual, but more than anything, it is the beginning of an amazing, yet important journey, for both us as players and Francis as a protagonist (if you let it be, that is). The Artful Escape is, in reality, one of those video game situations where the gameplay is an accompaniment (appropriate wording considering the musical trappings) more than it is the lead vocal. The story and the sub-textual (and sometimes more overt) prevailing message, are the real main event. Something which – if you’re open to them, will likely resonate with you more than you might initially expect. It must be said – gameplay being a slightly lesser focus here, is no bad thing at all and I’ll get to the “why” of that shortly. I’ll level with you here I’m going to be fairly free flowing and unstructured (more than usual at least,) because like quite a few games I’ve played recently, this game is a phenomenal example of almost perfect symmetry between the games core components. An aspect of The Artful Escape that I truly think works phenomenally well is its universal appeal. Yes, on the surface, it is a game about a struggling musician searching for creative freedom, and a desperate inescapable and unwavering need for his own artistic expression. Yet, it’s also a fascinating exploration of how genuinely freeing it is when – as a creative – you’re truly given that independence to express yourself exactly the way you feel is best for you. That is something that can be applied to all areas of creativity, the written word, painting or drawing to not even scratch the surface of the sheer amount of inner gifts that we all possess, which can and do exist within all of us. I’m sure many of us, at some point in our lives; we’ve all heard the words “Be the best you, that you can be” or words to that effect. I really do feel that the message The Artful Escape is trying to convey, could genuinely inspire people to do just that, and I really hope that it does. It is so easy to become disillusioned, like Francis and fold in on yourself creatively, but this game, whilst fiction, of course, shows us that the creativity, and satisfaction that it gives us is always lying dormant somewhere, and that it can be one of the most liberating feelings when we discover, what exactly that is. Interestingly, I don’t feel as if your music taste really holds much relevance over whether or not you’ll have an enjoyable experience with this game. Whether you like the type of music Francis struggles to connect with, or you live for screaming guitar solos (I’m partial to both by the way). I think so many of us – on some level – can understand and appreciate how truly wondrous it can feel to be creatively fulfilled, yet also how crushing it can feel, not to be. If you haven’t felt either feeling, perhaps playing The Artful Escape might inspire to seek that feeling out, because take it from me, The Artful Escape captures that feeling as well as almost any piece of media I’ve ever experienced has managed to. Something The Artful Escape leans into very heavily is self expression, and interestingly the game gives us as players enough of a feeling of agency to decide what that truly means to us as individuals – at least I think it does anyway. Later in the experience you’re given the choice to customise your appearance, once you’ve established your new “persona.” I think this can lead to several different choices for us as players, either you embrace what you think Francis might do himself, which is perfectly valid, or Francis’ persona becomes a truer version of you, yourself. This was the direction I took, perhaps to exorcise some of my own creative daemons; Fancis became me, well me, rocking as close to a Gibson J-200 (one of Tom Petty, my favourite musician’s preferred guitars) as possible. I mentioned earlier, how the gameplay is more of an accompaniment than the main attraction. Well, much like it is in music, an accompaniment is still wholly important. I one hundred percent feel like if the gameplay was anything more than it is, the game would suffer immensely as a result. You can shred your (essentially magical) guitar at will, manipulating the environment in the process; you can run, jump and slide too. Boss fights and “Jam Pads” take the form of the Simon Says style memorisation game that many of us will be familiar with. All of that sounds simple, and it is simple – but by being so, it is exactly what it needs to be. I absolutely believe this was a deliberate choice, the simplistic gameplay allows you to focus on everything else to such an intensified degree. Had the gameplay been a little more complex, it would have been far harder to take in how breathtakingly beautiful each of the games locations are. The Artful Escape is absolutely awash with bright and colourful scenery and fantastical creatures that could only be conjured by someone’s imagination (perfect for the setting). It is an absolute visual spectacle. Each location is distinct and memorable in its own way, a constant reminder that you are on a journey. The soundtrack provided by Johnny Galvatron and Josh Abrahams is honestly breathtaking. I do not use the “G” word lightly, believe me – but the way the gameplay, the visual and the audio elements meld together are nothing short of genius. I have been listening to the soundtrack the whole time I’ve been writing this review, and I have had goosebumps several times, as the memories of those locations came flooding back. The Artful Escape has become one of my favourite game soundtracks of all time, and I don’t see that changing any time soon, it has a real almost ethereal power to it. There have been several times playing this game, where I felt huge waves of emotion just wash over me, almost relentlessly. It is more of a “wow that’s powerful” way, not an “I am overcome with such deep sorrow” kind of way. There is something almost magical about the way Francis slides down ravines, manipulating the environment as he wails away with his guitar to his heart’s content. Every little thing you do, feels like it’s directly affecting the world, and it’s a real sight to behold. I never expected a video game to be able to capture that absolutely euphoric feeling of inner peace and fulfilment, that you get in that moment (however brief it might be) that you are doing exactly what you want to be doing, and that no negative feeling in the world could take that away from you. That, ladies and gentleman, is an immensely impressive thing to be able to achieve, I just can’t overstate how much that wowed me. It is a rare and powerful thing, and I will forever be grateful to this game for reminding me of just how satisfying that can feel. Asking myself the rhetorical question of whether I recommend this seems redundant. Of course I recommend this game, incredibly highly in fact. The game is a very short experience, but it’s likely one you won’t forget in a hurry either. This game is going to stay with me for a long while; if you let it be, whilst it might be a little short,it is an absolutely beautiful experience. Yes, the trophies are easy, yes the rarity is high, but I feel like you’re massively missing out on an absolutely wonderful time if you skip over the game because those particular factors are a problem for you. This game is a genuine contender for the best game I’ve played this year, and in a sea of really great games, that really is something!