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FerretGamer
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by FerretGamer Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:22 pm

New games in bold.

January:

1/2 - Spec Ops: The Line - PS3
1/3 - flOw - PS3
1/4 - Flower - PS3
1/7 - Journey - PS3
1/9 - WET - PS3

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For some reason, I really wanted to play Wet. I picked up a complete used copy from Gamestop for $8.99 and actually played it instead of shelving it like I do with so many games.

On one hand, Wet is a fun and stylized action game with a kick-ass soundtrack. On the other, however, Wet can be a frustrating game that needed some more time to bake in the oven.

There are certainly a lot of things that Wet does well. First, the soundtrack perfectly accompanies the tone of the game and is quite good. Other than that, the sound design is about what you would expect from a game in this genre and doesn't break the mold there. It is noteworthy to point out that the main character, Rubi, is voiced by Eliza Dushku of Buffy fame.

Graphically, the game is a mixed bag. There are times when some of the texture work, models, and geometry seem more appropriate on a 6th generation console. However, that isn't to say that the game doesn't have its share of nice moments. One of those times happens to be when Rubi enters "Rage" mode and the game takes on a very cool red, black, and white color scheme. This isn't necessarily graphically impressive but it certainly is cool to look at.
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There are some really fun aspects that make the game quite enjoyable. I really enjoyed the "Arena" portions of the game where essentially you're thrown into a room with lots of baddies. In the same room you have to deactivate the switches that close the door so you don't get overrun by these same baddies. However, you also get rated on the amount of acrobatic kills you perform and there are multipliers that you can pick up which in turn give you a larger score so that you can use it on upgrades for Rubi. The upgrade shop allows you to upgrade Rubi as a character (health, abilities, etc) or her weapons.

There are plenty of humorous aspects to the gameplay and Rage mode is one of them. Basically, Rubi gets pissed off because she has blood splattered all over her face from shooting some dude in the head. This triggers Rubi to go into her rage mode and the game switches into style and lets you have free-run of the baddies. You basically just have to chain as many kills as possible to improve your score.

Outside of these gimmicks, the gameplay can seem deceivingly perfect. For example, one of my runs through the level can consist of the following: wall run while shooting a baddie in slow-mo, jump off the wall, run into another baddie, jump off baddie, shoot him in the head, then slide in slow-mo towards another group of baddies, and slice them with Rubi's sword. A segment like that can easily be satisfying and work fairly well despite some control annoyances.

However, the problems arise when the game turns into full "Prince of Persia" mode and decides to stick strictly to acrobatic platforming. For the most part, it works but not without its share of annoyances. There are times that Rubi simply does not go the way you want her to. In fact, there are times that I made a jump clearly and she just face plants towards a wall and drops to her death. I'd forgive this if it was handled as nicely in Sands of Time, however, the game reloads (10 seconds) to the last checkpoint (ouch, especially if you are about to reach the next checkpoint.)

There was one segment that I had repeated numerous times because it consisted of a very poor wall-running section. I died, reloaded, mashed the square button to open the door, pressed X to skip cutscene, and then attempted that crappy wall-run section again. Rinse, repeat, and there you have a huge flaw with game.

In the end, I'd be lying if I didn't say I enjoyed the game because I really did. The game was well worth the $9 I paid for it. I'd never pay $60 for this game and I'd probably be upset if I spent more than $20 on it. However, there is certainly enough to do here despite the game's short length (6-7 hrs.) Completionists will want to go back and run through the challenges and the trophies require at least three playthroughs to obtain.
Exhuminator wrote:Sega gonna Sega.
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Gamerforlife
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by Gamerforlife Thu Jan 10, 2013 2:08 pm

FerretGamer wrote:New games in bold.

January:

1/2 - Spec Ops: The Line - PS3
1/3 - flOw - PS3
1/4 - Flower - PS3
1/7 - Journey - PS3
1/9 - WET - PS3

Image


Outside of these gimmicks, the gameplay can seem deceivingly perfect. For example, one of my runs through the level can consist of the following: wall run while shooting a baddie in slow-mo, jump off the wall, run into another baddie, jump off baddie, shoot him in the head, then slide in slow-mo towards another group of baddies, and slice them with Rubi's sword. A segment like that can easily be satisfying and work fairly well despite some control annoyances.



If more of Wet played out like that, I would have loved it more. If you could always find a nice sequence of moves to string together for a nice, well choreographed, action movie moment. The level design rarely supports that though and I found that too much of the game just came down to mindlessly hack and slashing or shooting at enemies with no semblance of finesse to it at all. Wet often just descends into chaos. This is why I always get dissappointed by games that attempt to pull off stylish shooting action. Stranglehold suffered from the same problems. There was one part of the game where I think you are jumping back and forth from different parts of a building and shooting at guys in the windows as you sail past them. I thought that was cool. It's during moments like that when Wet shines, when it's not just mindless, button mashy action. I did love two things about Wet though, maybe you did too. It was these two levels:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xt2FlsGGJgw

Excellent use of music in this stage to create something that feels tense as you're dodging huge objects that can kill you in one hit. I'm a bit of a metal head too, so I liked it

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJZn-3S8eqo

Just a cool idea for a level and another great track used for the music

Those two levels were just badass I thought, granted I could have designed them slightly better but I loved the ideas they put into them.

I love Eliza Dushku, they need to get her into more games
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Stark
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by Stark Thu Jan 10, 2013 2:16 pm

FerretGamer wrote:New games in bold.

January:

1/2 - Spec Ops: The Line - PS3
1/3 - flOw - PS3
1/4 - Flower - PS3
1/7 - Journey - PS3
1/9 - WET - PS3

Image

Glad someone got something out of this game, I really disliked it.
Let strength be granted, so the world might be mended...so the world might be mended.
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FerretGamer
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by FerretGamer Thu Jan 10, 2013 2:29 pm

Gamerforlife wrote:It was these two levels:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xt2FlsGGJgw

Excellent use of music in this stage to create something that feels tense as you're dodging huge objects that can kill you in one hit. I'm a bit of a metal head too, so I liked it

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJZn-3S8eqo

Just a cool idea for a level and another great track used for the music

Those two levels were just badass I thought, granted I could have designed them slightly better but I loved the ideas they put into them.

I love Eliza Dushku, they need to get her into more games


Yes, those were fun chapters especially #6 from the first video.
Exhuminator wrote:Sega gonna Sega.
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by alienjesus Thu Jan 10, 2013 6:08 pm

Lets kick off my year. I'm pretty surprised it's taken me this long to get a game up, I normally have one beaten around new year.

Anyhow:
1. Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions PSP *NEW*


So, I hear a lot of good stuff about this game, and I'd been lookign forward to playing through it. I'm a fan of strategy games, I adore Fire Emblem, Advance Wars and Final Fantasy Tactics Advance and A2. This game, though, I didn't much enjoy. It had its moments - the earlier parts of the game were pretty fun, and felt similar to the other, later games in the series. As the game went on though, I found more and more annoyances in it which caused me to become less and less motivated to play through. The story is convuluted, but not actually interesting - I struggled to keep track of what was going on, and I struggled even more to actually care. The ending is lauded by some of my friends for being awesome, and whilst it certainly was an interesting choice, I personally felt it didn't make much sense and left too much unexplained. Another issue I had was the games random encounters - sure, they're a FF staple, but they were too frequent here, which is a problem when a random encounter can take 15 minutes to beat instead of 30 seconds. Another problem which contributed to the previous one is the games pace - everything moves so slow, the spell animations take forever and nothing can be skipped through. The GBA one is much speedier. A final issue I had with the game was overpowered characters - on both sides. Towards the end of the game they tended to throw lots of cheap enemies with 100% death moves, or ridiculous unblockable status moves, or other similar crap which just felt unfair, and more based on luck than strategy. Worse, you couldn't even prepare for these fights because you cant see what you're fighting until after the battle begins. The games also throws lots of crazy powerful story characters at you as you progress, which is similarly annoying - I got this guy who can do crazy damage at a range for no MP cost and higher stats than everyone else - why bother using the generic units? And in fact, why bother setting up all their abilities and moves and equipment - I can just use this guy, and I'll win. It took the fun of strategising away, and just encouraged you to use the story characters instead - because they were better than anything you could set up otherwise.

It's a pretty long rant there for my first beat, but it's mainly because I was so disappointed. I love the series, I know people are fond of this one, and I did actually enjoy myself at times - but frankly it just seems like they hadn't quite figured out how to handle the balance and the pace here, and I didn't like it much at all. I'm a little worried about Tactics Ogre now, which I also picked up recently, as it's by the same guys. Maybe I'll like that one better though :?
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by jmbarnes101 Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:42 pm

alienjesus wrote:Lets kick off my year. I'm pretty surprised it's taken me this long to get a game up, I normally have one beaten around new year.

Anyhow:
1. Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions PSP *NEW*


So, I hear a lot of good stuff about this game, and I'd been lookign forward to playing through it. I'm a fan of strategy games, I adore Fire Emblem, Advance Wars and Final Fantasy Tactics Advance and A2. This game, though, I didn't much enjoy. It had its moments - the earlier parts of the game were pretty fun, and felt similar to the other, later games in the series. As the game went on though, I found more and more annoyances in it which caused me to become less and less motivated to play through. The story is convuluted, but not actually interesting - I struggled to keep track of what was going on, and I struggled even more to actually care. The ending is lauded by some of my friends for being awesome, and whilst it certainly was an interesting choice, I personally felt it didn't make much sense and left too much unexplained. Another issue I had was the games random encounters - sure, they're a FF staple, but they were too frequent here, which is a problem when a random encounter can take 15 minutes to beat instead of 30 seconds. Another problem which contributed to the previous one is the games pace - everything moves so slow, the spell animations take forever and nothing can be skipped through. The GBA one is much speedier. A final issue I had with the game was overpowered characters - on both sides. Towards the end of the game they tended to throw lots of cheap enemies with 100% death moves, or ridiculous unblockable status moves, or other similar crap which just felt unfair, and more based on luck than strategy. Worse, you couldn't even prepare for these fights because you cant see what you're fighting until after the battle begins. The games also throws lots of crazy powerful story characters at you as you progress, which is similarly annoying - I got this guy who can do crazy damage at a range for no MP cost and higher stats than everyone else - why bother using the generic units? And in fact, why bother setting up all their abilities and moves and equipment - I can just use this guy, and I'll win. It took the fun of strategising away, and just encouraged you to use the story characters instead - because they were better than anything you could set up otherwise.

It's a pretty long rant there for my first beat, but it's mainly because I was so disappointed. I love the series, I know people are fond of this one, and I did actually enjoy myself at times - but frankly it just seems like they hadn't quite figured out how to handle the balance and the pace here, and I didn't like it much at all. I'm a little worried about Tactics Ogre now, which I also picked up recently, as it's by the same guys. Maybe I'll like that one better though :?


The PS1 version was one of my favorite games for a long time and I bought a PSP almost exclusively for this game since they said it was supposed to be even better. I hated it and didn't get very far. I didn't like the way they changed the map or the field views and it ruined it for me to the point I traded off not just the game but the PSP and all of the rest of my games. I also sold off my PS1 version. Granted I got a CDX out of the deal but I've never had a game upset me that much before and ruin something I once enjoyed. Nice job on completing it despite not liking it,
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Game Systems Owned:
NES, NES 2 (AV mod), SNES, SNES 2, N64 (Pikachu), Gamecube (Pokemon, Purple JPN modded), Wii, Wii U (Zelda), GB Pocket, GBA (2x-Arctic & Indigo), GBA SP (3x), DS Lite (Crimson/Black), 3DS (Aqua Blue), Sega CDX, Saturn, Dreamcast, Game Gear, Lynx, PSP (2x)
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MrHealthy
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by MrHealthy Fri Jan 11, 2013 1:32 am

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Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning (Origin)
Kingdoms of Amalur is a bit of a strange game for me. You see, when it came out I had no interest in the game at all, and I even played the demo (for some Mass Effect 3 promo stuff) and did not really enjoy it. But as time went on and I heard more and more about the 38 Studio's legal, financial and other various troubles I became interested.

One day I found myself thinking "What kind of a game could cause all of this?" Of course it wasn't the game that caused 38 Studios failure, but it is hard to get a thought out of your mind once its in there. So I decided to find out exactly what kind of game it was.

My conclusion? Its decidedly average. Middling. Mediocre. Unexceptional.

Kingdoms of Amalur does quite a few good things, but it has just as many flaws for all the good. None of those flaws are so offensive that they make it a bad game, but all of the good has been done better in other games. In the end I was left with the impression that I had done this all before.

Take the story and lore of the game for example. The authors did a great job of building up a great and detailed history for Amalur. Apparently they wrote over 10,000 years worth of history for Amalur, and they used great concepts and mature themes for the story that they where telling. Themes like racism, privilege, fate and immoratlity. And then they went and ruined all that by not explaining anything.

The Fae for instance are a race of immortal beings older then the other mortal races. And then the game makes me murder dozens of them with no explination as to how they are staying dead. It wasn't until about 60-70% of the way through the game that I learnt that those were just there physical forms and they can come back again with a new body later. And that in turn lead me to question how killing these Fae generals would even help my cause, because their army wouldn't have just lost a leader, because he will just be back later. Stuff like this was everywhere. Contradictions and ill thought out ideas broke immersion everywhere. And to top it off, your character has ammnesia, so you are just dumped into this world with no way to make heads or tails of it all. Its like the authors gave me this giant new pool in my backyard, but they forced me to dive in head first and then proceeded to laugh at me when I smacked my head on the bottom.

A lot of the ideas seemed half baked as well. Take the theme of fate. It plays a huge role in the story, everyone has a fate, except for you, which means you can actually change the fates of everyone and everything around you. No where in the game does it make you feel like your changing fates. None of the villages or cities seem to be affected by my actions. There are no moral choices that change peoples perceptions and reactions to me. Everything was entirely scripted and set in stone. So why have all this bollocks about fate if it doesn't effect gameplay?

The quests themselves fall into some predictable problems. Far too often I found that I was just doing the same thing over and over. Run here, interact with object, run there, kill some guys. This in of itself isn't so bad. Its to be expected, as thats what most RPG's boil down to. The biggest problem I had with the quests was talking to the NPC's. The conversations are so slow and plodding and most NPC's didn't actually have any useful quest information that I found myself just skipping the conversations and just following the quest marker on my map. If the characters would have been more fun to talk too it would have made the quests much better.

And last but of so not the least is the meat and potatoes of the game, the part that really did shine a little, the combat. When it worked, it worked wonderfully. I can not properly describe how satisfying it was when I would see a group of enemies all higher levels then me and then charging in and properly chaining my attacks together to take them all out without a scratch on me was. It was fast, it was fluid, it was fun. When it worked.

To be fair, it worked about 85-90% of the time. Spawns could be kinda wonky though, getting too many enemies on me at once because of bad spawns or walking into an area and having enemies spawn in surrounding me. Also I would sometimes find myself in the heat of combat suddenly unable to use certian attacks and spells. And it wasn't a case of just being out of mana or something silly like that, because I could still use more resource intensive spells. The keys/mouse just straight up wouldn't work for that move. And this didn't just apply to attacks. Sometimes this also affected my movement, being unable to move in a certian direction for a moment, or being unable to use my dodge manouver, leading me to getting pummled to death by mobs of enemies. Some might say that this could be a hardware issue, and I admit it may be a possibility, but considering that I have had zero issues in other games and in general use, I must believe it to be the game. These moments where isolated from each other though and not too frequent in which they would ruin the combat.

I could go on for several more paragraphs about the user interface, story and character development, loot drops, leveling, etc. But this is already long enough. So the bottom line is that the game is fun, mostly in part due to the combat, and it had some great ideas that weren't well realized. But due to some bad decisions, some clear bugs and just a general lack of polish the game ends up feeling uninspired and lackluster.

If you are starved of a decent action RPG to play, I'd say give it a shot, you could do a lot worse then this. But there are a lot of better games out that are worth your time and money.

The Full List:
Hotline Miami (Steam)
Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning (Origin)


Total Beaten: 2 out of 120.
118 left to go.

Up Next?
Well I'm going to play through the two DLC chapters of Kingdoms of Amalur. Namely The Teeth of Naros and The Legend of Dead Kel. Still doing McPixel as well. Plowing through an RPG has already set me back on my goal as I need to average one game every three days and Im at two games in ten days so I also plan to play Thirty Flights of Loving to catch up and then dive into either F.E.A.R. or Deponia.
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dsheinem
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by dsheinem Fri Jan 11, 2013 5:56 am

Nice write up on KoA. I want to give it a try myself still. Was Origin cumbersome in any way?

MrHealthy wrote:then dive into either F.E.A.R. or Deponia.



I adore the FEAR series and found quite a lot to enjoy in all three games. I'd suggest those :)
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by prfsnl_gmr Fri Jan 11, 2013 10:07 am

1/11 - Okamiden (NDS)

I enjoyed Okami very much and I enjoyed Okamiden...not quite as much. Comparing it to (in my opinion) one of the best games of all time is a bit unfair, however; so, I will just say that it is a very solid follow up that does the best it can given the hardware's limitations. It builds on the previous game in an acceptable manner, it has some splendid boss battles, and it controls wonderfully. It is also the best "zelda" game on the Nintendo DS; so, if you are a fan of either Okami or The Legend of Zelda I would recommend playing through it. (Like its predecessor, however, it does start off a bit slow...)
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MrHealthy
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by MrHealthy Fri Jan 11, 2013 11:47 am

dsheinem wrote:Nice write up on KoA. I want to give it a try myself still. Was Origin cumbersome in any way?

I adore the FEAR series and found quite a lot to enjoy in all three games. I'd suggest those :)


If it still interests you then by all means go for it. It still warrients at the very least a look if anyone has any interest in it. In a way I am actually dissappointed we will never see a sequel, because if it improved upon its predecessor it could have been quite a good game.

As for origin, its got a bad rep which I feel is entirely unwarrented. Sure, its no steam killer, but its pretty easy to use, just open, download, play, and it doesn't seem to bog down my computer ever.

And ya, Ill probably jump into FEAR tonight. Mostly because its already installed and I haven't started downloading Deponia.
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