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Gamerforlife
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by Gamerforlife Sun Apr 14, 2013 2:44 pm

Raiiban wrote:2013 Games Beaten
Yakuza 4 (PS3)
Hotline Miami (PC)
Disgaea 4 (PS3)
Quest of Ki (Famicom)
Flow Free (Android)
Ni no Kuni (PS3)
Bad Dudes (NES)
Magic Knight Rayearth (Saturn)
Sexy Parodius (Saturn)
Ys 1 Chronicles + (PC)
Super Mario Kart (SNES)
Umihara Kawase (Super Famicom)
Sonic & Sega All Stars Racing Transformed (PC)
Hatsune Miku: Project Diva f (PS3)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles in Time (SNES)
Atlantis no Nazo (Famicom)
Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory (PS3)
4/14: Bioshock Infinite (PC)

Well, I was pretty let down overall by Bioshock Infinite. When I saw this trailer from 2011: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vOMVnRAV17g I was amazed at what I saw, I wanted to play that game so bad. Instead there were only a few choice bits and pieces from that scattered through the game.

Well, it's my own fault for putting any stock into it and thinking that what was presented for years would be the final product. It was and OK modern linear shooter that had a lot of bits of unfulfilled potential scattered about.


Sounds like you just described the original Bioshock as well, which got just as much ridiculous hype as this one is getting. I feel like a good general rule for games today, if it gets tons of hype like the second coming of Jesus, you can safely ignore that game. You probably aren't missing anything. The best games don't usually get that level of attention lavished upon them, but the mediocre stuff typically does.
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by Raiiban Sun Apr 14, 2013 4:21 pm

Gamerforlife wrote:Sounds like you just described the original Bioshock as well, which got just as much ridiculous hype as this one is getting. I feel like a good general rule for games today, if it gets tons of hype like the second coming of Jesus, you can safely ignore that game. You probably aren't missing anything. The best games don't usually get that level of attention lavished upon them, but the mediocre stuff typically does.

I wasn't really getting mixed into the hype or anything like that, but just the gameplay from the trailer I linked was very different from the game I played. I wanted a big open world and to be able to do things strategically with Elizabeth in a chaotic field like that, but there was not a single area in the game anything like it. I feel like I was led astray, shown something entirely different from the finished product. I don't think it's as bad as the people who got burned by Aliens: Colonial Marines recently, but it's in the same vein.
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by Gamerforlife Sun Apr 14, 2013 7:37 pm

1. Thomas Was Alone - PC
2. Sam & Max Save the World - The whole season - PC, GOG versions
3. Sam & Max Beyond Time and Space - The whole season - PC, GOG versions
4. Sam & Max The Devil's Playhouse - Episode 1 - PC, GOG version
5. Sam & Max The Devil's Playhouse - Episode 2 - PC, GOG version
6. Sam & Max The Devil's Playhouse - Episode 3 - PC, GOG version
7. The Walking Dead Series - PC
8. Sly Thieves in Time - PS3

Guacamelee - PS3 (Normal difficulty, 100% map completion, all hidden masks acquired, 85% of trophies acquired)

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This game has a lot of appeal to me. I like pro wrestling so the luchador thing is cool. I also love 2D platformers and cartoon-like games. After playing the amazing Dust: An Elysian Tail on XBLA last year, it's nice to see a very similar game come out this year for PSN. It's needs to be said though, Guacamelee is not a metroidvania game like many people are calling it. Dust is a metroidvania game, with its plethora of rpg elements and magic spells. Guacamelee is more directly inspired by Metroid without any of the extra stuff that Castlevania brought to the table with Symphony of the Night. No inventory, no leveling, no equipment, no magic attacks. In fact, the game makes some very obvious shot outs to Metroid specifically as you play the game. So of course this means a game where you'll acquire different abilities as you progress through the game and use them to acquire previously blocked off areas as well as hidden areas. This will lead to upgrades and money to buy further upgrades and extra moves, which you'll definitely be needing as the game's difficulty increases.

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It's also clearly inspired by 2d beat 'em ups. There's a lot of combat in this game, and you'll have to do a lot of combos, dodges, grabs, and whatnot like any good beat 'em up game. I love that both this game and Dust have rather involved combat systems to make fighting enemies fun, rather than just a means to an end. Guacamelee has much more challenging fights though and a slightly deeper combat system. Fights in Dust are just about being flashy and showing off. Fights in Guacamelee are very much about survival, particularly in the combat arenas and the final stage. Unlike Dust, you have no magic attacks to rely on like you would in a Castlevania style game. It's all straight up melee combat, which means you need a bit more skill. Plus, the game has various tricks up its sleeve to make defeating enemies more complicated than just pummeling them to death. Fights can get pretty tough in this game

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The game in general is pretty difficult at times. Some of the platforming sections are nasty, particularly if you try to acquire each of the hidden mask pieces in the game, which is a task similar to getting all the chaos emeralds in a Sonic game. The challenges for getting the masks are much more varied and diverse though. They range from combat challenges, to speed runs, to a maze, and some very tricky platforming sections. You need to get all the masks for a good ending. I did this on my first playthough, so I don't actually know what the bad ending is. The nice thing about Guacamelee is its frequent checkpoints and respawn points. It keeps the game's fairly high level of difficulty from getting overbearing.

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Much of the game's challenge comes from how it integrates the living world and the dead world. You'll need to switch back and forth between them a lot to get through a lot of platforming sections and win a lot of the fights. It reminds me of polarity switching in Outland. The way in which the game mixes this up with the various abilities you acquire leads to some very creative and difficult challenges. It'll definitely put both your platforming skills and beat 'em up skills to the test.

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The art style is great, as you can see from the pics. Not as beautiful or well animated as Dust, but an impressive looking game with great character designs. There's a lot of cut scenes in the game. They are very low budget scenes comprising of mostly still shots compared to the really nice, fully animated ones in Dust, but there's more of them in this game so it's a fair trade off. The music is a nice mix of mariachi style music with electronic elements. It gives the game an upbeat feel. Unfortunately, there isn't a large selection of tracks so the music can get repetitive. Unlike Dust, there's no voice acting. That's a good or bad thing depending on your tastes. I think it could have given the game a bit more personality, but it's a minor complaint

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The story is basic save the girl, save the world stuff, but the characters are great and the game is full of humor and fun references. Pay attention to your environment and you'll notice a lot of fun little shout outs to various things like grumpy cat, Castle Crashers, Zelda, etc. What I find fun about some of the references is that they are filtered through the lens of a Spanish speaking, Mexican culture like pretty much everything else in this game. Like a lot of retro styled, indie games, the game's humor has a certain self awareness that is nice. It revels in being a silly video game and is not afraid to wink at its audience in much of the character and NPC dialog.

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It's a great game overall. I like Dust: An Elsysian Tail a bit more, but this game is roughly in the same league and is the more challenging of the two games, but never quite so hard it stops being fun. It is fairly short, even if you go for 100% completion, which takes less time than it does doing that in Dust because the game doesn't focus on the exploration as much as that game does. I honestly don't give a crap about game length though. If a game doesn't drag on and overstay its welcome, I'm happy. I felt like the game had showed me everything it needed to by the time I saw the end credits. I don't like overly long games these days. Less is more. I would give this game a solid 8 out of 10. I probably would rate it higher if I hadn't played the more impressive Dust: An Elysian Tail last year. Also, kudos to this game for having co op, yet not shoving in a bunch of pointless and annoying co op trophies (looking at you Double Dragon Neon). Speaking of trophies, this game has a platinum, which is pretty cool.

I love old school games like this, Dust: An Elysian Tail, and Hell Yeah! Wrath of the Dead Rabbit. XBLA and PSN can't get enough of them as far as I'm concerned.
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by dsheinem Sun Apr 14, 2013 9:24 pm

I dunno, I think Bioshock Infinite is absolutely worth all the hype and more. It is one of the best games I've played this generation, and probably one of the best I've played ever. It is basically a 10/10 for me, a score that I would likely give out to less than one new game per year. It is clearly, to me, one of the top 3-4 games this generation.
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by NihonRobot Mon Apr 15, 2013 4:47 am

1. Liberation Maiden (3DS) - 1/6
2. Dead Space (360) - 1/11
3. Anarchy Reigns (360) - 1/13
4. Dead Space 2 (360) - 1/17
5. Dead Space 2: Severed DLC (360) - 1/17
6. DmC Devil May Cry (360) - 1/22
7. Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch (PS3) - 2/5
8. CoD of Duty (Web) - 2/7
9. Dragon's Dogma (360) - 2/12
10. Medal of Honor: Warfighter (360) - 2/13
11. Dead Space 3 (360) - 2/18
12. Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance (360) - 3/5
13. Sonic the Fighters (XBLA) - 3/10
14. Tomb Raider (360) - 3/12
15. Ridiculous Fishing (iOS) - 3/17
16. Bioshock Infinite (Steam) - 4/7
17. Trials Evolution (XBLA) - 4/9
18. Bit.Trip Presents... Runner 2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien (XBLA) - 4/15
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by Raiiban Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:08 am

dsheinem wrote:I dunno, I think Bioshock Infinite is absolutely worth all the hype and more. It is one of the best games I've played this generation, and probably one of the best I've played ever. It is basically a 10/10 for me, a score that I would likely give out to less than one new game per year. It is clearly, to me, one of the top 3-4 games this generation.

Really? I would have ranked it at something more of a 7/10 or 8/10 at best. I don't think it was particularly special or genre moving at this point but it was an alright FPS. My biggest beef with the game was that it wasn't the gameplay that was shown in trailers, which looked amazing but the final product was only typical or average. As well, the plot was a bit on the weak side with a lot of movie or game logic - whichever term you prefer - thrown into it to keep the game moving so it could continue shuffling you down the corridor from point A to point B.
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by dsheinem Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:57 am

Raiiban wrote:
dsheinem wrote:I dunno, I think Bioshock Infinite is absolutely worth all the hype and more. It is one of the best games I've played this generation, and probably one of the best I've played ever. It is basically a 10/10 for me, a score that I would likely give out to less than one new game per year. It is clearly, to me, one of the top 3-4 games this generation.

Really? I would have ranked it at something more of a 7/10 or 8/10 at best. I don't think it was particularly special or genre moving at this point but it was an alright FPS. My biggest beef with the game was that it wasn't the gameplay that was shown in trailers, which looked amazing but the final product was only typical or average. As well, the plot was a bit on the weak side with a lot of movie or game logic - whichever term you prefer - thrown into it to keep the game moving so it could continue shuffling you down the corridor from point A to point B.


It doesn't have the deepest combat ever, the toughest AI conceived, or the most nuanced maps ever found in an FPS - but that's fine. Those elements are all very good (if not great), but Infinite didn't really have to blow me away with game design in order to be considered a 10/10 for me. I was completely enamored with the world created and the attention to detail in so many aspects of that world, the story kept me interested and sustained through to the end, the underlying themes were not what one typically encounters in games and were all well done without being too blunt or too obtuse, and the game just felt like an inspired experience. Most contemporary FPS titles (and most games in most genres, for that matter) feel like the work of a team trying to "check boxes" towards market viability and thus the relationships between games are often obvious and the genre evolution is predictable. Infinite, by contrast, felt like it was the singular vision of one team that didn't place itself in comparison to anything other than its earlier games (games which also stood out from the pack for reasons of aesthetics, story, etc.). I don't concur that the plot was "on the weak side" at all, as I am hard pressed to think of more than 2-3 FPSs (Bioshock being one of them) which tell a more compelling story in a more compelling way.

I'll add that I am not sure what you mean by "movie or game logic". Is there a "logic" to all movie plots? To all game plots? Are these "logics" unique to those mediums?
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by dsheinem Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:24 am

Gamerforlife wrote: I feel like a good general rule for games today, if it gets tons of hype like the second coming of Jesus, you can safely ignore that game. You probably aren't missing anything. The best games don't usually get that level of attention lavished upon them, but the mediocre stuff typically does.


This from the guy that loves the over-hyped Arkham games :wink:

I think your "general rule" will exclude you from checking out a lot of really great stuff. I'd consider "hype" to be marketing budget, placement of prominence in conventions, coverage of a game by journalists, and interest in a game on forums. In my experience games that get "tons of hype" are games that either

A) have at least something in them that hasn't been seen much in the industry/genre (e.g. the story/world of Bioshock games, the art/experience of Journey, etc.)
B) refine many existing elements of design into a highly polished final product (Uncharted 2, Mass Effect 2, Borderlands 2, Fallout 3, etc.)
C) are a polished entry in a long running series known for a certain production quality and/or trademark gameplay (Call of Duty games, Halo games, God of War games, NHL series, NBA 2K series, Metal Gear Solid games, etc.).

In my experience stuff in group C absolutely runs into the "hype train" argument and interest can be mitigated by genre/series appreciation, but stuff in group A or B is worthy of your attention if you want to understand how the games industry is evolving (both economically and from a design perspective). There's no rule saying you have to agree with the hype, but I am not sure how "safely" you can ignore the games if you care much about tracking innovation or about staying abreast of defining experiences of a particular generation.

I know that you tend to favor more niche stuff, and that many of us on this site also prefer games that utilize/expand upon classic game design elements (whether that be old-school FPS maps or nuanced beat em up combat), but those games don't get hyped as much because either A) they don't have the budget for the level of polish as a AAA title and this shows (e.g. games are glitchy, design is inconsistent, art is basic, length is short, etc.) or B) they bring so little to the table that is new that it isn't worth "hyping" them as much. That said, I know that many of the recent titles that you talk about enjoying (Dust, Guacamelee, Samurai Dishwasher, Lollipop Chainsaw, etc.) all score very well in reviews and all are worth checking out despite the lack of "hype" from the industry/game journalists. But that doesn't mean that stuff that is hyped is as a "general rule" garbage.
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by Raiiban Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:36 am

dsheinem wrote:It doesn't have the deepest combat ever, the toughest AI conceived, or the most nuanced maps ever found in an FPS - but that's fine. Those elements are all very good (if not great), but Infinite didn't really have to blow me away with game design in order to be considered a 10/10 for me. I was completely enamored with the world created and the attention to detail in so many aspects of that world, the story kept me interested and sustained through to the end, the underlying themes were not what one typically encounters in games and were all well done without being too blunt or too obtuse, and the game just felt like an inspired experience. Most contemporary FPS titles (and most games in most genres, for that matter) feel like the work of a team trying to "check boxes" towards market viability and thus the relationships between games are often obvious and the genre evolution is predictable. Infinite, by contrast, felt like it was the singular vision of one team that didn't place itself in comparison to anything other than its earlier games (games which also stood out from the pack for reasons of aesthetics, story, etc.). I don't concur that the plot was "on the weak side" at all, as I am hard pressed to think of more than 2-3 FPSs (Bioshock being one of them) which tell a more compelling story in a more compelling way.

I'll add that I am not sure what you mean by "movie or game logic". Is there a "logic" to all movie plots? To all game plots? Are these "logics" unique to those mediums?


By Movie or Game logic I mean doing something completely nonsensical for the sake of either filling time or moving forward to another point in the plot. The biggest offense that made me wonder what the heck this game was making me do was..

Upon finding out the Chen Li was dead you open a tear into an entirely new dimension where things have played out differently. A bit of a reach to secure guns don't you think? Then upon arriving at said alternate dimension you find that all the extremely large and heavy gun manufacturing equipment is gone, so they go to the police HQ to secure it. Where's the logic in this? Only when they get there do they realize that the two of them can't move several tons of equipment back to the gun store. So the solution there? Open up yet another dimension rip and hope you get a best case scenario where both Chen Li is alive and his gun manufacturing equipment is secure.


This is jumping around from different points to almost just demonstrate Elizabeth has this ability it feels. That whole section of could have been completely omitted and nobody would have noticed, it feels like artificial lengthening. I just feel like the point of a good plot is to give reason and meaning to everything but I found several portions of Bioshock Infinite lacking in it, or they tried to give it a meaning that didn't come across as powerful or sensible as intended.

Also, as for your remark about filling in checkboxes towards market viability, well, just look at this video from Ken Levine himself about the lackluster generic cover for Bioshock, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bL4HshArMa0 The cover was made specifically to try and appeal to window-shopper fratboys in his words. I still believe that covers and boxart are an important aspect of games and if something as simple as many peoples first impression is compromised towards marketing then who's the say what else is or is not? I don't feel like that's the case in this game at all; but I am pointing it out. I think most of my issues have more to do with aspects of the game feel like they were being changed last minute and re-written.
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Re: Games Beaten 2013

by Gamerforlife Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:37 am

dsheinem wrote:
Raiiban wrote:
dsheinem wrote:I dunno, I think Bioshock Infinite is absolutely worth all the hype and more. It is one of the best games I've played this generation, and probably one of the best I've played ever. It is basically a 10/10 for me, a score that I would likely give out to less than one new game per year. It is clearly, to me, one of the top 3-4 games this generation.

Really? I would have ranked it at something more of a 7/10 or 8/10 at best. I don't think it was particularly special or genre moving at this point but it was an alright FPS. My biggest beef with the game was that it wasn't the gameplay that was shown in trailers, which looked amazing but the final product was only typical or average. As well, the plot was a bit on the weak side with a lot of movie or game logic - whichever term you prefer - thrown into it to keep the game moving so it could continue shuffling you down the corridor from point A to point B.


It doesn't have the deepest combat ever, the toughest AI conceived, or the most nuanced maps ever found in an FPS - but that's fine. Those elements are all very good (if not great), but Infinite didn't really have to blow me away with game design in order to be considered a 10/10 for me. I was completely enamored with the world created and the attention to detail in so many aspects of that world, the story kept me interested and sustained through to the end, the underlying themes were not what one typically encounters in games and were all well done without being too blunt or too obtuse, and the game just felt like an inspired experience. Most contemporary FPS titles (and most games in most genres, for that matter) feel like the work of a team trying to "check boxes" towards market viability and thus the relationships between games are often obvious and the genre evolution is predictable. Infinite, by contrast, felt like it was the singular vision of one team that didn't place itself in comparison to anything other than its earlier games (games which also stood out from the pack for reasons of aesthetics, story, etc.). I don't concur that the plot was "on the weak side" at all, as I am hard pressed to think of more than 2-3 FPSs (Bioshock being one of them) which tell a more compelling story in a more compelling way.

I'll add that I am not sure what you mean by "movie or game logic". Is there a "logic" to all movie plots? To all game plots? Are these "logics" unique to those mediums?


So it sounds like you like the story and aesthetics and don't mind the gameplay being so so. That doesn't sound like a 10/10 game to me. Personally, I'm getting kind of tired of games following that formula. It's like a lot of big budget games now are more interested in being great movies than great games. Same reason I don't like the Uncharted franchise. I can give some games a pass for focusing heavily on story like PC Adventure titles or something like To the Moon, because that is kind of the expectation that you have for those games due to their genre. They're not heavily focused on meaty gameplay. But you've expect a first person shooter with the kind of hype that Bioshock games get to have something worthy of note in the gameplay department, something innovative at least.

Just my opinion, and I haven't actually played the game myself. So take that for what it's worth. I did play the original Bioshock though, and it never lived up to its hype, which was very similar to the hype this new entry has received.

dsheinem wrote:
Gamerforlife wrote: I feel like a good general rule for games today, if it gets tons of hype like the second coming of Jesus, you can safely ignore that game. You probably aren't missing anything. The best games don't usually get that level of attention lavished upon them, but the mediocre stuff typically does.


This from the guy that loves the over-hyped Arkham games :wink:

I think your "general rule" will exclude you from checking out a lot of really great stuff. I'd consider "hype" to be marketing budget, placement of prominence in conventions, coverage of a game by journalists, and interest in a game on forums. In my experience games that get "tons of hype" are games that either

A) have at least something in them that hasn't been seen much in the industry/genre (e.g. the story/world of Bioshock games, the art/experience of Journey, etc.)
B) refine many existing elements of design into a highly polished final product (Uncharted 2, Mass Effect 2, Borderlands 2, Fallout 3, etc.)
C) are a polished entry in a long running series known for a certain production quality and/or trademark gameplay (Call of Duty games, Halo games, God of War games, NHL series, NBA 2K series, Metal Gear Solid games, etc.).

In my experience stuff in group C absolutely runs into the "hype train" argument and interest can be mitigated by genre/series appreciation, but stuff in group A or B is worthy of your attention if you want to understand how the games industry is evolving (both economically and from a design perspective). There's no rule saying you have to agree with the hype, but I am not sure how "safely" you can ignore the games if you care much about tracking innovation or about staying abreast of defining experiences of a particular generation.

I know that you tend to favor more niche stuff, and that many of us on this site also prefer games that utilize/expand upon classic game design elements (whether that be old-school FPS maps or nuanced beat em up combat), but those games don't get hyped as much because either A) they don't have the budget for the level of polish as a AAA title and this shows (e.g. games are glitchy, design is inconsistent, art is basic, length is short, etc.) or B) they bring so little to the table that is new that it isn't worth "hyping" them as much. That said, I know that many of the recent titles that you talk about enjoying (Dust, Guacamelee, Samurai Dishwasher, Lollipop Chainsaw, etc.) all score very well in reviews and all are worth checking out despite the lack of "hype" from the industry/game journalists. But that doesn't mean that stuff that is hyped is as a "general rule" garbage.


I just know that in my experience, in the past few years the majority of hyped up, must play titles I have tried did not live up to my expectations. Xenoblade is one example. The Uncharted games are another. Zelda Skyward Sword wasn't amazing. Even Borderlands 2 which I did have some fun with, was not nearly as amazing as people made it out to be. I think my concept of what is an amazing game just differs greatly from the majority of the gaming industry and maybe even the gaming community in general. People get blown away by stuff that is just run of the mill to me and I see brilliance in some games that other people seem oblivious to. Perhaps, I very much AM the niche gamer.

Though I do love the Batman games, and think it's crazy that anyone else doesn't get the hype. They are polished, they are innovative, they have amazing graphics, amazing voice acting and sound design, a fair amount of replay value with challenge rooms, collectibles, etc., and they are very faithful to what one expects from a Batman title. That is what I view as 10/10 games. My only really gripe with Arkham City is them going overboard with the collectibles, a minor issue. In no universe are they overrated and no argument can possibly convince me of that.
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