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pierrot
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by pierrot Sat Jun 04, 2016 5:43 pm

1: Rakugaki Ninja (Mac)
2: Doukutsu Monogatari (Cave Story) (Mac)
3: Dimahoo (ARC)
4: Rez (DC)
5: L.O.L.: Lack of Love (DC)
6: Rockman 7: Shukumei no Taiketsu! (SFC)
7: Ganbare! Daiku no Gen-san (SFC)
8: Super Metroid (SFC)
9: Dragon Force (Saturn)
10: Rocket Knight Adventures (GEN)
11: Quackshot: Starring Donald Duck (GEN)
12: Mario Story (Paper Mario) (N64)
13: Rockman & Forte (SFC)
14: Sparkster (GEN)
15: Lumino City (Steam)
16: Braid (Mac)
17: Kirby: Air Ride (GCN)
18: Billy Hatcher and the Giant Egg (GCN)
19: Starfox Assault (GCN)
20: Terra Phantastica (Saturn)
21: Pikmin (GCN)
22: Doubutsu Banchou (Cubivore) (GCN)
23: Eternal Darkness: Manekareta 13-nin (GCN)
24: Dragon Slayer: Eiyuu Densetsu (MD)
25: Densetsu no Ogre Battle: The March of the Black Queen (Saturn)


Nearing the mid-point of the year, and I've beaten some games. I haven't necessarily been doing it consciously, but I've managed to knock out quite a number of games that have been languishing in the perpetuity of the realm of the unfinished. Which is to say that I've finished quite a few games that I had been playing for a while (up to years ago) but left unbeaten. Feels good, man.

Rather than write a bunch of stuff for all of these games, I put what I had written on backloggery for each one, after finishing it, behind the spoiler.

1 - "86% completion; 36/36 secret scrolls - Ugh! It's so close--so damndably close to being a good game. This mac version doesn't appear to be officially supported by the creators anymore, so a lot of my frustrations could have been due to that, but it doesn't run especially well, and my inputs were eaten all the time. Collision detection is suspect at times, and the stage design can be completely absurd in places. Aesthetically it's just fair, but it has all the trappings of a great game. It was just poorly executed. Quite charming, though, regardless."

2 - "Bad Ending, Normal Ending; 50 HP, 30 Missiles. Wonderful game. This version has some graphical hiccups that probably has a lot to do with the difference in resolutions, but still plays beautifully. Not much that I wasn't a fan of, other than that the requirements for opening up the Bloodied Holy Grounds feels like contrived bull shit. Alas, I guess I'll be playing it again--which isn't such a bad thing."

3 - "Hot damn, my board isn't dead! Set it to free play, and went to town. Final boss is nuts: Don't think I've seen reversing bullet patterns before." Swapped out the suicide battery on the board a couple months ago, and may have played through it again after the operation.

4 - "Direct Assualt - normal, and Lost Area unlocked." This game is still about as good as I remember it being. I played the PS2 version originally. Rez feels a little forgotten over the last five years or so.

5- "Well, I'm sure I won't be playing this game again. Interesting to note that this was apparently developed by the same company that made "moon" and "UFO" for the PS1. "moon" was a game I was interested in, but after playing L.O.L., I'm much more apprehensive about it. L.O.L. is just too poorly designed. It has some mildly redeeming qualities (which don't really spring to mind) but it's clunky, with mediocre presentation, and most of the ideas that went into the creation of the game just feel poorly implemented. A shame." One of the big claims to fame for this game is a soundtrack by Sakamoto Ryuichi, and it's pretty underwhelming, sadly.

6 - "'Cool guys don't look at explosions...!' I hate the Wily in this game with a passion. I played MM7 via emulation a bit in middle school, and that was probably the first I'd played of any original series Megaman games. I never saw the latter four robot masters, though. I guess it's kind of a black sheep, and I get that. It's overall a bit better than I had anticipated, but still a bit lackluster."

7 - "s'a'ight, I suppose. Controls aren't quite great; music is roughly 50% terrible; tacked on premise/story. However, the characters/enemies, and art design are a bit endearing. Only 4 levels (each broken up into two main stages, and a boss stage) and a final boss. Plays pretty well, but not a must-play. For anyone who might need to know: (Up -- Up-Forward -- Forward + attack) is the input to throw out the hammer like a boomerang, and is essentially required to make it through the game."

8 - "8:15; 72% | 13 Energy tanks (3 reserve) - 170/45/40 | This game easy, tho'. Good enough, but not spectacular. Fills me up with that general feeling of ennui that Nintendo games so frequently give me, even though it kept me coming back routinely. I prefer SOTN and Guacamelee as far as metroid-vanias go. It's solid, but like the original, not something I see myself coming back to within the next decade or so, at least. Has some technical and design issues (eg. soul crushing slowdown); sound is underwhelming, but that's rather to be expected, I'd say."

9 - "Lv 27 Wain | 8/8 D-Warriors, 34 castles, 121 generals | Finally got out of that Katmandu cluster-fuck, and got to finish the game. A little surprising how easily the final boss went down. Granted, I would have been really upset if I had gotten that far only to be flattened in ten seconds. It's unfortunate that the game really dragged for the last two-fifths of the game. I enjoyed it a lot more until that point. Glad I finished it--and the game wants to compel me to find out what the endings of the other 7 characters are like--but I don't think I have it in me to play any more campaigns in this one."

10 - "'Easy' (no continues; two deaths) and 'Children' mode clears | Finally beat this game. Only took a few years. This game is really good, but is not playing around. It's a real bitch to play without knowing almost every move to make, every step of the way through the game. Part of that is because the controls (and it really pains me to say this) aren't too good at times. They're a bit slick, and that can spell disaster. Fortunately, they can be overcome relatively easily through stage memorization, and the overall experience is a delight. Definitely a classic."

11 - "Whoever designed that last stage is clinically insane. Holy shit."

12 - "Lv 27 | all star shards/super blocks/badges | Probably wouldn't care much if I lost this game. Doubt I'll ever have a reason to replay it. I guess when a bunch of kids grew up playing the, nearly, zero RPGs on the N64, this one might seem like the greatest ever. Still not sure if I really like it or not. First: I hate the story, even though it made me chuckle a few times. The game as a whole is mind numbing-ly slow, and requires a Sonic move to be playable. Most of the exposition and game play are wastes of time. I hate the combat system, wholesale. Better than the sum of its parts somehow, but still not great."

13 - "100/100 CDs | Rockman/Forte sides 100% clear | Had way more trouble with King's final form, and the boss rush, as Forte for some reason. I played this game a back in '99/'00 as Forte (never Rockman) a lot, but am surprised I was able to beat this game. I thought I might give up on King Stage 2, but I finally beat King with some strategy assistance. I find that I like this game almost as much as 8, which is only behind 3 and 2, for me. Mega Man 2 hard mode is like child's play compared to Rockman's side of this one, though. They could have toned it down, a little bit, at least."

14 - "Normal mode, no continues, Gold Sparkster. | Pretty good, but nowhere near the level of the original. Wow, they went HEAVY on emulating Sonic for this one. A pretty short romp, once one knows the layout of the game. First attempt at beating it was pretty entertaining; Second time through was infuriating; Third time through was somewhere in between. Music is pretty nice, and the graphics are colorful, but lacks the charm of the original. The jet-pack mechanics aren't great either. I'm convinced the final boss is impossible without Gold Sparkster."

15 - "Seems to work against people playing in 1080p on a large screen. It's all right. I like KAMI more."

16 - I didn't write anything about Braid. I think that about sums it up.

17 - "Air Ride - 9 stars, 39/120 checks, Meta Knight; Top - 7 stars, 9/120 checks; City - 68/120. Not sure what happened to my old save file. I know I didn't ever get the unlockable stage, so I couldn't have put too much time into it, but I decided to actually get serious about playing it, and feel fairly rewarded for it. I've had the game since release, and only truly appreciate it now. It's not perfect, but I like the course design, and graphics. The game play takes some getting used to, but there are plenty of carrots held up in front of the player's nose."

18 - "35/56 Emblems, 57/72 eggs. | My few-year-old save was apparently at the penultimate story stage. Glad to finally beat it, but it's deeply flawed. The controls, camera, movement, coding for collision on ledges and especially egg tracks are simply atrocious. The frame rate is wildly inconsistent as well. It's a promising game, if everything worked well, and the design compensated for all of it's shortcomings under the hood, so to speak. The graphics are quite nice, and the stages can be interesting, but are more often just frustrating. By about the fifth world, this game has well overstayed its welcome. Music can be grating, too."

19 - "Bronze Clear (5151 pts) - 8/0/0 Badges - 8 Coins - 5 Flags | Not great; not terrible. Profoundly stupid story. Nice sound design, aside from VA. A competently made game. I don't think it's as bad as some people do, but I also don't regard Starfox 64 all that highly, either."

20 - "Lv 23 | Archduke ending/epilogue. This game went HEAVY on the extistentialism down the stretch. Jeanne for de facto main character. A good game, but not really earth shattering. Decent music, solid mechanics, very good characters, a good story. It doesn't really lend itself to being showered with praise, but it does a lot of things really well, and nothing truly exceptionally. Aside from Jeanne: Jeanne is life...."

21 - "All parts; 25 Days | Would have been 24 days if it weren't for that damn Bulblax. Some really frustrating mechanics, but pretty good, overall. I enjoyed a lot of the game, but a bunch of things are so unintuitive about the design. The camera and a lot of the controls stink, pikmin are uncontrollable at times, I had no idea that yellow pikmin could be thrown higher than the others, and yellow pikmins' bomb mechanics are frustrating even after the game finally told me how to manage them. Also, Oliver is a dink, and the pikmin are a menace, and a scourge. I'm really kind of conflicted about this game."

22 - "150/150 forms, max stats, realistic skins | Still one of the worst cameras I've ever seen in a video game. I played two games from the start in this one: The first time served to get me my bearings, and the second I was able to accomplish the main goal of the game. The first time through was incredibly frustrating. I had more fun the second time, when I basically knew what I was doing, and how to achieve it, but the camera is putrid, and the control scheme isn't much better. Those two things really take away from the mild amusement the game provides otherwise."

23 - "All paths complete with all spells/runes + Gladius of Light. Was compelled to complete this in order to put it away for, presumably, ever. A pretty good game. Not terribly enchanted by it. It's a nice looking game, that's often a bit marred by poor use of light sources, and contrast. The controls have some quirks that are generally manageable, but annoying when in a pinch. Feels like there are a bunch of plot holes in character motivations. Some poor communication of objectives to the player at various times."

24 - "Lv 40/40/40/40 | Good game. There are some things about it I don't care for much, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. Glad I got back into this game and actually finished it. It was worth it. It feels most closely related to Dragon Quest, but with possibly a bit better story. It pokes fun at the genre a bit, also, which is kind of interesting. The ending is a bit cliche by today's standards, but may have been a bit more fresh in '89. It plays well, and looks really nice on the Mega Drive. Nicely ported, and the music is outstanding."

25 - "Lv 26 - 32 Chapters (3 Saturn exclusive) | World, Fortune, and Justice endings. Ended up with five Liches, and five Princesses. At a certain point this game isn't a ton of fun. It's not really necessary to use more than, perhaps, three to five units, and the tactics are kind of uninteresting. It has a certain charm that is somewhat akin to Gensou Suikoden, but I'm unlikely to replay it at all. Fortunately I liberated everything, revisited all the maps, and got all buried treasure, so there isn't much of the game I didn't see, other than stuff on the dark path."
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ElkinFencer10
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ElkinFencer10 Sat Jun 04, 2016 11:14 pm

Games Beaten in 2016 So Far - 58

January (20 Games Beaten)
1. Shadow Warrior - Playstation 4 - January 1
2. The Order: 1886 - Playstation 4 - January 2
3. Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop - Wii - January 3
4. NyxQuest: Kindred Spirits - WiiWare - January 4
5. Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F 2nd - Vita - January 5
6. Shadow the Hedgehog - Gamecube - January 9
7. Fairy Bloom Freeia - Steam - January 10
8. Petit Novel Series: Harvest December - 3DS - January 13
9. Gas Guzzlers Extreme - Steam - January 14
10. Muramasa: The Demon Blade - Wii - January 16
11. Project Zero 2: Wii Edition - Wii - January 19
12. Killzone: Liberation - PSP - January 20
13. Sin & Punishment: Star Successor - Wii - January 20
14. Kirby's Epic Yarn - Wii - January 24
15. Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love - Wii - January 25
16. Corpse Party - PSP - January 25
17. Freedom Planet - Wii U - January 25
18. Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space - Vita - January 25
19. Silent Hill: Homecoming - Xbox 360 - January 26
20. Life is Strange - Playstation 4 - January 28


February (8 Games Beaten)
21. Corpse Party: Book of Shadows - PSP - February 2
22. Megadimension Neptunia VII - Playstation 4 - February 12
23. Dr. Discord's Conquest - NES - February 13
24. Corpse Party: Blood Drive - Vita - February 17
25. If My Heart Had Wings - Steam - February 18
26. Missing: An Interactive Thriller - Steam - February 18
27. Her Story - Steam - February 18
28. Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright - 3DS - February 26


March (8 Games Beaten)
29. Saints Row 2 - Steam - March 1
30. Saturday Morning RPG - Playstation 4 - March 3
31. Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest - 3DS - March 6
32. Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze - Wii U - March 8
33. Pokken Tournament - Wii U - March 20
34. Moe Chronicle - Vita - March 22
35. Tom Clancey's The Division - Playstation 4 - March 23
36. Yoshi's New Island - 3DS - March 28


April (13 Games Beaten)
37. Alien Rage - Steam - April 1
38. Alien Breed: Impact - Steam - April 2
39. Alien Breed 2: Assault - Steam - April 3
40. Alien Breed 3: Descent - Steam - April 3
41. Bravely Second: Ballad of the Three Cavaliers - 3DS - April 6
42. Quantum Break - Xbox One - April 7
43. Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric - Wii U - April 8
44. Akai Katana - Xbox 360 - April 9
45. Otomedius Excellent - Xbox 360 - April 9
46. Chasing Dead - Wii U - April 10
47. Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation - 3DS - April 14
48. Ratchet and Clank - Playstation 4 - April 20
49. Starfox Zero - Wii U - April 23


May (6 Games Beaten)
50. Aero Fighters 2 - NeoGeo - May 8
51. Bravely Second: End Layer - 3DS - May 11
52. Uncharted: Golden Abyss - Vita - May 15
53. Doom - Playstation 4 - May 20
54. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End - Playstation 4 - May 22
55. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan - Playstation 4 - May 25


June (3 Games Beaten)
56. MegaTagmension Blanc + Neptune VS Zombies - Vita - June 2
57. Republique - Playstation 4 - June 3
58. Splatterhouse - Playstation 3 - June 4


58. Splatterhouse - Playstation 3 - June 4

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I fired up Splatterhouse wanting a game with senseless violence and unnecessary gore. I was not disappointed. I started the game by blasting one of my Disturbed CDs (using my 3DO and the other TV, of course) because I figured I wouldn't give a shit about the story. Then I realized the guy who voiced the mask was the same guy who voiced Sgt. Hawk in the later Army Men games (along with every other male character, evidently), so I was like "Well shit, the Army Men fanboy in me need to hear his dialogue." Then I found out, to my pleasant surprise, that the story is actually not bad. It's not a gripping narrative, but it's interesting.

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Basically you're a lanky nerd who's going with his girlfriend to some creepy ass house because plot devices (I think she was going to interview a creepy old scientist or something), and then oh no, you've been disemboweled. Fortunately, there just happens to be magical possessed mask that promises to heal you and help you save your girlfriend if you put him on your face. What could go wrong?

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You spent the next 9 or 10 hours (depending on how often you fuck up the traps, which I did a LOT due to my immense impatience) spilling approximately 4,378,462 and a half gallons of demon blood all over the place while you watch the world end. You rip out several hundred spines and dozens of sets of lungs, as well. It's great. This game earned its M rating in the best way possible. OH, and if you collect the optional photo pieces lying around the levels, you get to see your girlfriend's boobs. It's like this game was made for me. All it needed to be perfect was a flamethrower and anime chicks with either pink, purple, or blue hair.

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Imagine crossing MadWorld with H. P. Lovecraft, and that's pretty much the plot. There were a lot of technical issues that I noticed (severe frame rate drops when the action got heavy, leading to a several deaths when the hiccups messed up the timing of my dodges or screwed me up jumping over lava), but that may be a PS3 specific issue; I've not played it on 360 to compare. Either way, while the issues are severe when they occur, they're infrequent enough that the game is playable and enjoyable once you get used to the standard frame rate (which runs at about 25 fps).

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If you like gore and senseless violence, I'd recommend this one. I'd recommend it on 360, though, since it probably runs a lot smoother than it does on PS3.
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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Xeogred
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Xeogred Sun Jun 05, 2016 3:22 pm

1. Sly 2 Band of Thieves HD (PS3)
2. Black (Xbox)
3. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (Xbox)
4. Super Mario Bros Advance 4: SMB3 E-Reader Levels (WiiUVC)
5. Galerians (PSX)
6. Shantae and the Pirate's Curse (WiiU)
7. TRAG / Hard Edge: Mission of Mercy (PSX)
8. Soul Blade (PSX)
9. Castlevania Circle of the Moon* (WiiUVC)
10. The Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess* HD (WiiU)
11. Mega Man 9* (PSN)
12. Mega Man 10* (PSN)
13. Dark Souls 3 (NG++) [PLATINUM] (PS4)
14. Mega Man 1* (PS4, MMLC)
15. Mega Man 2* (PS4, MMLC)
16. Mega Man 3* (PS4, MMLC)
17. Mega Man 4* (PS4, MMLC)
18. Mega Man 5* (PS4, MMLC)
19. Mega Man 6* (PS4, MMLC)
20. Doom [PLATINUM] (PS4)

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The new Doom is Godly. And I'd consider myself somewhat of a Doom veteran (I played Doom at a friends with a rollerball mouse when I was 5 haha), to this day it's more than likely top 5 for me. I love it to such an extreme that it makes me dislike some Build engine games and I've had a hard time getting into Quake. These all just make me want to play more DOOM! I am jumping into Quake next though, since I've never played much of the original to be honest. I'm definitely in the mood for it finally and it feels like it just might the greatest combo ever conceived, as this new Doom very much feels like an epic evolution of both Doom and Quake combined.

New Doom is essentially PERFECT. I don't know how they did it, but this is Doom. This is 90's game design flawlessly transitioned into the modern era and it just plays like a dream. One of its greatest markings is that they got the pacing down right, which is what makes original Doom such a wondrous flow. It's not always pure chaos and there's some level exploration around and time to take in the atmosphere, but when things hit the fan, it gets real. As this game progresses, the level design gets more and more like classic Doom with awesomely drawn out arena like areas and there are tons of rooms that are such a throwback at times.

I can't emphasis the strength in its combat and exploration pacing enough. Compared to other shooters of original Doom's time, I am also very picky about the bullet hell types of today. Serious Sam, the Shadow Warrior reboot, and probably some others... rarely do I hold much interest in these kinds of games after a few hours (if even), because they just feel so aimless and boring, regardless of having so much intense chaos going on. They just don't get the flow down very well for me. But Doom did.

The combat is absolutely amazing. In a day and age where modern shooters encourage utter boredom by designing the gameplay to force you to have to hang behind cover and take pop shots, Doom says fuck that. If you want health and ammo, you better go get it and rip and tear via the melee "Glory Kills". This element was my greatest worry going into the game, fearing that it would ruin the flow of battle... and it doesn't at all. It's integrated so well and barely noticeable after awhile because of how fast paced and natural it becomes in the flow of combat. It pulls the rug out from what devs have been doing for far too long and is such a breath of fresh air. Every single gun is amazing to use and heck, I might even like the normal shotgun over the super in this, because the normal has a grenade launcher which is a blast. It's insanely impressive how complex the fights get the further you get into the game, with the arenas being layered with a dozen or so different enemies types, each that have their own weaknesses and strategies to take down... exactly like original Doom. The entire cast returns, with the exception of a few (no Chaingunners, thankfully?) and some changes like the Summoner being the new Arch Vile, etc. In comparison to something like the Halo series, that has used the same 5 enemy types for over a decade by this point, or other shooters that don't even try to be interesting and just have 100% normal human enemy types... man it's just a blast with Doom's awesomely unique assortment of villains to take down and the variety really puts other shooters to shame.

The Giant Bomb podcast really nails it with the experience this game fuels, it's a serious power trip in the greatest way ever. In regards to both how viciously fun it is, and even how hilariously the plot portrays the infamous Doomguy. YOU the player, are the real monster here.

Even the platforming and level exploration rules. Once you get the double jump, it starts reminding me a bit of Metroid Prime in very cool ways. Lots of nice tucked away secrets and hidden stuff. Then there's the map which is awesome to look at and I enjoyed exploring so much and referencing the map, then it hit me, this is like #21 or something on moments that truly makes me know I'm playing a real Doom game, just like the originals.

It's not GOTY contender... it's a downright timeless classic. I think this is going to be one people will be talking about for the ages. This is Doom and it's pretty much flawless. Get it.
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ElkinFencer10
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ElkinFencer10 Sun Jun 05, 2016 7:51 pm

Games Beaten in 2016 So Far - 59

January (20 Games Beaten)
1. Shadow Warrior - Playstation 4 - January 1
2. The Order: 1886 - Playstation 4 - January 2
3. Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop - Wii - January 3
4. NyxQuest: Kindred Spirits - WiiWare - January 4
5. Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F 2nd - Vita - January 5
6. Shadow the Hedgehog - Gamecube - January 9
7. Fairy Bloom Freeia - Steam - January 10
8. Petit Novel Series: Harvest December - 3DS - January 13
9. Gas Guzzlers Extreme - Steam - January 14
10. Muramasa: The Demon Blade - Wii - January 16
11. Project Zero 2: Wii Edition - Wii - January 19
12. Killzone: Liberation - PSP - January 20
13. Sin & Punishment: Star Successor - Wii - January 20
14. Kirby's Epic Yarn - Wii - January 24
15. Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love - Wii - January 25
16. Corpse Party - PSP - January 25
17. Freedom Planet - Wii U - January 25
18. Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space - Vita - January 25
19. Silent Hill: Homecoming - Xbox 360 - January 26
20. Life is Strange - Playstation 4 - January 28


February (8 Games Beaten)
21. Corpse Party: Book of Shadows - PSP - February 2
22. Megadimension Neptunia VII - Playstation 4 - February 12
23. Dr. Discord's Conquest - NES - February 13
24. Corpse Party: Blood Drive - Vita - February 17
25. If My Heart Had Wings - Steam - February 18
26. Missing: An Interactive Thriller - Steam - February 18
27. Her Story - Steam - February 18
28. Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright - 3DS - February 26


March (8 Games Beaten)
29. Saints Row 2 - Steam - March 1
30. Saturday Morning RPG - Playstation 4 - March 3
31. Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest - 3DS - March 6
32. Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze - Wii U - March 8
33. Pokken Tournament - Wii U - March 20
34. Moe Chronicle - Vita - March 22
35. Tom Clancey's The Division - Playstation 4 - March 23
36. Yoshi's New Island - 3DS - March 28


April (13 Games Beaten)
37. Alien Rage - Steam - April 1
38. Alien Breed: Impact - Steam - April 2
39. Alien Breed 2: Assault - Steam - April 3
40. Alien Breed 3: Descent - Steam - April 3
41. Bravely Second: Ballad of the Three Cavaliers - 3DS - April 6
42. Quantum Break - Xbox One - April 7
43. Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric - Wii U - April 8
44. Akai Katana - Xbox 360 - April 9
45. Otomedius Excellent - Xbox 360 - April 9
46. Chasing Dead - Wii U - April 10
47. Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation - 3DS - April 14
48. Ratchet and Clank - Playstation 4 - April 20
49. Starfox Zero - Wii U - April 23


May (6 Games Beaten)
50. Aero Fighters 2 - NeoGeo - May 8
51. Bravely Second: End Layer - 3DS - May 11
52. Uncharted: Golden Abyss - Vita - May 15
53. Doom - Playstation 4 - May 20
54. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End - Playstation 4 - May 22
55. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan - Playstation 4 - May 25


June (4 Games Beaten)
56. MegaTagmension Blanc + Neptune VS Zombies - Vita - June 2
57. Republique - Playstation 4 - June 3
58. Splatterhouse - Playstation 3 - June 4
59. Spec Ops: The Line - Playstation 3 - June 5


59. Spec Ops: The Line - Playstation 3 - June 5

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This game is a fucking work of art. Let's get that out first and foremost. This isn't something you play so much as something you experience, and I don't mean that it's an interactive movie or visual novel or anything. The gameplay is a straightforward third person shooter. What I mean is that this game will sit with you and really force you to reflect on what it is you just experienced. I might be a little biased since I really love any narrative that forces you to confront the ugly parts of reality, but I really do think of this as to video games what Heart of Darkness (of the inspiration is very, very clear if you've read the book) or The Killer Angels are to literature.

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Parts of this will be in spoiler tags to avoid spoilers for those who have yet to play the game but want to in the future (either coincidentally or as a result of my glowing praise). The game starts off with your character and two fellow Delta Force operatives being deployed to Dubai, United Arab Emirates for reconnaissance following transmissions from a lot US Army battalion that redirected to Dubai following the end of their mission in Afghanistan to assist with evacuations. The reason that Dubai is being evacuated is because record setting historic sandstorms have destroyed the city, cutting off supplies and forcing the UAE to declare it a "No Man's Land."

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The subtle point of the entire game is force you to question both how you look at war as well as how you look at war in video games. You witness unspeakable atrocities and war crimes justified as being necessary for one reason or another (self-defense, for example), but you're really forced to look at the reality of what you or a non-player entity did in the name of necessity.
There are two examples that really stick out to me more than any other. The first is the now infamous white phosphorus attack. You come across this courtyard swarming with hostile soldiers, and your character decides that the only hope your team has of getting through the courtyard alive and proceeding with your mission is to use a nearby mortar with white phosphorus shells (WP being a chemical weapon that creates a dense white smoke cloud with incendiary properties, ensuring that pretty much anyone caught in its area of effect suffers an agonizing death by immolation). You find out that what you thought was a cluster of enemy soldiers in an encampment was really a group of nearly 50 refugees - mostly women and children - who were being sheltered by the soldiers you were attacking. You're forced to walk through the courtyard slowly and both see and hear the slow, painful deaths of the soldiers as they burn alive, and the game forces you to walk through the innocent civilians who burned to death because of your actions.

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The other example is towards the end of the game when you're trying to save Lugo following the helicopter crash. You try to get to him as quickly as possible, but you arrive in a sort of makeshift refugee camp with refugees surrounding the gallows they've used to execute him, shouting what I assume are (well earned, by this point) anti-American cries. Your character shoots the rope and tries to resuscitate him, but by this point, he's already gone. Now, in fairness, the game gives you a choice here; you are able to refuse to open fire on the crowd, but the game strongly encourages you to give in to the primal urge to avenge your friend and comrade via your surviving ally's insistence that you "give the word" to authorize him to open fire on the civilians. Wanting to experience the full horror that this game tries to show players, I made the ethically unconscionable choice to mow down as many civilians as I could to avenge your friend, and it makes you suffer for it. You hear the screams of your victims as they die trying to flee from shots to the back.


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Towards the end, the game makes damn sure you get what it's trying to tell you, too. Loading screens will have messages such as "This is all your fault" and "The US military doesn't condone the killing of unarmed combatants, but this isn't real, so why should you care?" If memory serves, one message reads "They're all dead because of you," although I may be confusing that with a line of dialogue from the game.

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Some may take issue with the game's bit of melodrama, but I think that it's an extremely powerful experience that really does force you confront a number of important issues worthy of thought and reflection. How far does "necessity" go for justifying atrocities in war? Are there some things too horrible to do even in war even if it's "necessary" to achieve your objectives? What does it say about us as people if we revel in the simulated slaughter of innocents in brutal ways?

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Of course, with that last point, I still love horribly gory video games, but I have to admit, it felt so REAL in this one that it made me uncomfortable to play this game the way I play most games. They really did to an excellent job of humanizing the civilian NPCs in subtle ways. The other questions, though, are worth asking. Speaking as an American, we've spent decades justifying unspeakable acts by saying that it was necessary to ensure either our own security or the security of the world or our allies. I'm not trying to pass judgement on that one way or another (I'm just here to review a video game), but it's worth asking if our justifications for such things are truly justified or if we're just rationalizing the unforgivable.

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This is one of those games that I think everyone needs to play for the emotional and psychological impact the game has (I say similar things about The Last of Us). This isn't your standard Call of Duty romp through a Middle Eastern combat zone, though. This game sets out to make you think and feel, and at least for this player, it succeeded. Be warned - this game is not for the light of heart or emotionally fragile.

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BONUS TRIVIA - This game is banned in the United Arab Emirates due to its destroyed depiction of the city of Dubai.
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by prfsnl_gmr Sun Jun 05, 2016 8:08 pm

Great review, Elkin.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ElkinFencer10 Sun Jun 05, 2016 8:11 pm

prfsnl_gmr wrote:Great review, Elkin.

At least my review skills are better than my "remember to mail shit" skills. Your package should be there tomorrow or Tuesday, btw. If I can remember which pair of dirty pants I left the receipt in, I'll PM you the tracking number.

forgive me, senpai, for i have failed you
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Sarge Sun Jun 05, 2016 8:19 pm

January:
1) Bonk's Adventure (NES)
2) Little Samson
3) Holy Diver
4) Holy Diver (legit!)
5) Mitsume Ga Tooru
6) TMNT II: The Arcade Game (NES)
7) Mighty Final Fight
8] Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!
9) Monster In My Pocket
10) Battle of Olympus
11) Gunstar Heroes (repeat)
12) Dragon Age: Inquisition
13) Dragon Age: Inquisition - Trespasser
14) Captain America and the Avengers (NES)
15) StarTropics
16) Double Dragon II: The Revenge (NES) (save states)
17) Double Dragon II: The Revenge (NES) (legit)
18) Crisis Force
19) Esper Dream 2
20) Felix the Cat
21) Moon Crystal
22) Panic Restaurant
23) Frankenstein (NES)
24) Crystalis
25) Nekketsu Kakutou Densetsu

February:
26) Killer Instinct (GB)
27) Mashin Hero Wataru Gaiden
28) Sly Spy (Arcade)
29) The Red Star (unreleased XBOX, also on PS2)
30) Adventure Island 4
31) Cocoron
32) Batman: Arkham Knight
33) Xeodrifter (Vita)
34) Doom 2
35) Brandish: The Dark Revenant
36) Magical Pop'n
37) The Ninja Warriors (SNES)
38) Phantasy Star (SMS)
39) Phantasy Star III
40) Super Smash Bros. for 3DS
41) Brandish: The Dark Revenant (Dela Mode)

March:
42) Freedom Planet (Milla, 82 lives lost)
43) Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis
44) Lara Croft Go
45) Oniken
46) Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam
47) Batman: The Video Game (GB)
48) Batman: The Video Game (NES)
49) Super Spy Hunter

April:
50) Mega Man 2
51) Mega Man 4
52) Mission: Impossible (NES)
53) Mega Man 6
54) Super Mario Bros. 3
55) Sword Master
56) DuckTales 2
57) Rush'n Attack (NES)
58) Mega Man 3
59) Mega Man 5
60) Mega Man
61) S.C.A.T. - Special Cybernetic Attack Team
62) TaleSpin (NES)
63) Double Dragon III (NES)
64) Donkey Kong (NES)
65) Astyanax (NES)

May:
66) Master Chu and the Drunkard Hu
67) The New Ghostbusters II (NES, proto)
68) Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (PSP, via Dracula X Chronicles)
69) Revenge of Shinobi
70) Shinobi III
71) Shadow Dancer
72) El Viento
73) Earnest Evans
74) One Must Fall 2097
75) A Nightmare on Elm Street (NES)
76) Hebereke
77) Contra
78) Wario Land: Shake It!
79) Gimmick!
80) Ninja Gaiden (GG)
81) Wai Wai World 2 (NES)
82) Zoda's Revenge: StarTropics II
83) Uncharted: Golden Abyss
84) Double Dragon (SMS)

June:

85) Astra Superstars
86) Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance
87) Star Wars: Dark Forces 2 - Jedi Knight

Well, I sat down and finally finished Jedi Knight. I'm actually a little more conflicted on the game now. I thought the early going was fantastic, and the levels are just immense. It's pretty cool the sense of scale the game gives you, even with the now-terrible graphics.

You can also see where the first game's DNA is embedded in pretty heavily. But it's also clear that the shift to so much open space really changes the way the game plays in some aspects. It's got good and bad moments, but overall, it's solid stuff...

...except for the lightsaber duels. Those are terrible and not fun. It's really frustrating to control your character. One of the early fights is against a really tiny Jedi, and he's really hard to hit. The Oddjob of Star Wars, I suppose. I didn't end up beating him the legit way, I actually got lucky and locked him into an animation where he would head away from me, then towards, then away again constantly. Mostly because the game AI couldn't figure out how to get over to the ledge I was on. I shot him to death when he turned his back. Not the way the devs had things in mind.

The other ones are actually relatively passable, except for that last one. Ugh, Jerec is a pain in the butt. I dished out so much damage on that dude, he runs to regenerate, and of course, if he pulls the statues to the center, it's game over. So you have to hit the two switches, then ride an air shaft up to where he's regenerating, and whack him out of it. I did this many, many times, both from scratch and mid-save. Apparently there's a point at which the statues keep moving regardless of whether you hit the switches, and that's where things go wrong. Anyway, I finally got lucky and managed to intercept him, literally standing in his way and hacking at him while he futilely tried to go up to heal. Take that, you stupid punk.

If the saber-battling was more fun or controllable, I'd say this is one of the best FPSs I've played... but they're there, and they drag down the experience. For my money, Dark Forces is the better game overall, and hopefully I can finish that one Monday at lunch break.
Last edited by Sarge on Sun Jun 05, 2016 8:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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“History isn't just the story of bad people doing bad things. It's quite as much a story of people trying to do good things. But somehow, something goes wrong.” -- C.S. Lewis
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by CFFJR Sun Jun 05, 2016 8:34 pm

I'm glad you enjoyed Spec Ops: The Line so much Elkin.

I played it a couple of years ago and I also thought it was an exceptional game. I haven't replayed it since, but from time to time I'll suddenly recall some part or another from the game and feel impressed all over again. It's really top notch stuff.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by dsheinem Sun Jun 05, 2016 10:16 pm

CFFJR wrote:I'm glad you enjoyed Spec Ops: The Line so much Elkin.

I played it a couple of years ago and I also thought it was an exceptional game. I haven't replayed it since, but from time to time I'll suddenly recall some part or another from the game and feel impressed all over again. It's really top notch stuff.


Spec Ops is one of the most compelling games from the past generation, easily. Now that you've played it, you should read the excellent "Killing is Harmless" by Brendan Keogh. A short but worthwhile read: https://www.amazon.com/Killing-Harmless ... B00B9P2WP6
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by MrPopo Sun Jun 05, 2016 10:24 pm

Yeah, it's quite unfortunate that Jedi Knight's lightsaber duels were so terrible. Jedi Outcast is much better in that regard, to the point that one of the more popular multiplayer modes was saber duel no force. And Jedi Academy doesn't change much from Outcast outside of the two new lightsaber styles.
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