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Ack
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Ack Mon Nov 07, 2016 11:41 am

1. Metal Slug (MVS)(Run and Gun)
2. Puzzle Link (NGPC)(Puzzle)
3. Illusion of Gaia (SNES)(RPG)
4. Warhammer 40,000: Rites of War (PC)(Strategy)
5. Shadowrun: Dragonfall (PC)(RPG)
6. Ultima Underworld: The Stygian Abyss (PC)(RPG)
7. Drakkhen (SNES)(RPG)
8. Flight of the Amazon Queen (PC)(Point and Click Adventure)

9. Shadowgrounds: Survivor (PC)(Top-Down Shooter)
10. Lufia & The Fortress of Doom (SNES)(RPG)
11. BioShock (PC)(FPS)
12. Jeopardy! Sports Edition (SNES)(Game Show Sim)
13. Turok: Dinosaur Hunter (PC)(FPS)
14. Thief Gold (PC)(Stealth)
15. Call of Duty 2 (PC)(FPS)

16. Might and Magic III: Isles of Terra (PC)(RPG)
17. Alone in the Dark (PC)(Survival Horror)
18. Silent Hill (PS1)(Survival Horror)
19. Sanitarium (PC)(Point-and-Click Adventure/Horror)
20. Gauntlet: Slayer Edition(PC)(Hack and Slash)

21. Mortal Kombat 3 (SNES)(Fighting)
22. Ultima II (PC)(RPG)
23. System Shock (PC)(Action RPG)
24. DOOM (PC)(FPS)
25. Soul Blazer (SNES)(RPG)
26. Slave Zero (PC)(Action)
27. Broforce (PC)(Run and Gun)
28. Gothic (PC)(RPG)
29. Eye of the Beholder (PC)(RPG)
30. Outlaws + A Handful of Missions (PC)(FPS)
31. Nosferatu: The Wrath of Malachi (PC)(Survival Horror)

32. Crusaders of Might and Magic (PC)(RPG)
33. Shadow Man (PC)(Action)

Shadow Man is a game I first encountered on the Nintendo 64 back in the late 1990s. At the time I was waffling between the N64 and the PlayStation as my primary source for gaming, and while there were many 64 games that I enjoyed(and still enjoy), I ended up favoring the PS1. As a result, there were quite a few games I paid lip service to but never truly got into. Shadow Man is unfortunately one of these, a game that for whatever reason I was not able to embrace or get into at the time that I now have found a genuine appreciation for. It's not perfect; there are some definite rough edges. But even with a few quirks, I enjoyed my time with it and kept going back to it for more.

So...what is it? Well, Shadow Man is a third person action/adventure title with a nice dose of horror thrown in. It's not to the point of survival horror, but it does use voodoo for some interesting trappings and aesthetics. The enemies you face in the game pull out hooks and chainsaws, sport autopsy scars, spit, hiss, and claw at you. Some have rifles to pop you from afar or are much bigger titans that can seek you out with homing shots. There is a variety of designs while still sticking to a gray or greenish color palette which screams death and decay, and often the game will throw you up against superior numbers which will force you to run and gun for your life. But don't worry, your basic pistol has infinite ammo, and one of the perks of being the Shadow Man is that you can't really die, so you just keep coming back for more...at least until the final boss anyway. Against him you can most definitely die. Occasionally as you progress you'll also backtrack to discover new enemies in older places, and every now and again you'll teleport in and discover a horde lying in wait for you. That's always fun.

In Shadow Man, you play as Michael LeRoi, the titular Shadow Man, a super hero who can use voodoo powers to move between the world of the living and that of the dead. Unfortunately for you, Legion has shown up in Deadside with a group of serial killers working as his heralds, and he's bent on acquiring 120 dark souls which will allow him to cross over into the realm of the living along with his armies of the dead. To stop him, Shadow Man has to acquire the 120 dark souls first. Unfortunately all of this is prophesied, and you're still slated to lose in the end. So you might as well do it. Along the way, you'll acquire different voodoo-themed weapons for working in the land of the dead and heavy firepower for handling the land of the living...at least until you acquire the ability to force an eclipse, which will grant you your deadside powers in the living world.

As you pick up dark souls, you'll also unlock new levels of power, which have a small aesthetic change on your character(your eyes glow with more power) and also lets you access new areas of Deadside. This leads to one of the small issues I have with the game: Deadside is laid out in a weird way, so you need a map. The game actually came with a physical map originally which gives you a rough idea of where doors, tools, weapons, etc., could be found. It's not the best plan, but it gets the job done. Unfortunately since it's not actually in the game, I had to look it up externally. It's also not entirely accurate about items and pathways, but whatever, it's better than nothing. Also you eventually learn to teleport between areas as you go, so some of the problems with navigation are mitigated thankfully. The game is also nice enough to tell you how many dark souls are to be found in each area, so you will know exactly where you need to go.

Another gripe I have about the game is the targeting system, which just sort of clicks on from time to time and locks your view on an opponent whether you want it to or not. This got me hurt a fair bit, but it also just flat out refused to work a few times when I needed it to. Combat can still be handled by simply shooting at things, and there is a "sniper mode" which brings you into first person view to shoot manually. That got a lot of use from me. But it was a pain any time any sort of precarious platforming was involved, including against the final boss. In fact the game's most glaring flaws involving camera view, targeting, and combat really come out for the final encounter; otherwise things were generally fine.

There are a couple of little changes I discovered across various versions of the game. Apparently the N64 version has a secret weapon hidden in it that cannot be found in the PS1 or PC releases; instead in these you find the Book of Secrets, which contains concept art. While the Book of Secrets can be found in the N64 version, it contains all of the game's cheats. That instead gets handled in the PC version by wandering into certain places and unlocking them. Cheats can be access from the main menu, and no, they don't do much to change the game from what I can tell. Instead they're mainly cosmetic, which is great. I love a good big head mode, and Shadow Man has it. My personal favorite lets you change your player model into a bipedal rottweiler. More games need playable walking dogs.

At the end of the day, I wanted a nice game to play a bit for October, and Shadow Man provided. I had fun, and I'm sorry I never gave the game its due back when I first got my hands on it. It's nice to get back to things like this and find they were worthwhile. It's also a little nostalgic, something that I appreciate as I get older.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by MrPopo Mon Nov 07, 2016 11:45 am

I remember renting Shadow Man back in the day, then needing to rush to the store for a Controller Pack to actually save. I think I got fairly far on that rental and enjoyed it. Then I picked it up when GOG had it on sale and I just couldn't get into it at all. Maybe I'd re-enjoy it if I were playing the N64 versions, but playing on PC I kept wanting it to play like a PC game, not a port of a console game.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Ack Mon Nov 07, 2016 11:48 am

I can see that. I had to do some control tweaking to really get the hang of things and eventually decided against using the mouse to do anything but shoot and manipulate inventory. My final control scheme involved WASD for moving and strafing while Q and E were used for turning. Even at max sensitivity, using the mouse to turn the camera is slower than using dedicated keyboard commands. After getting the hang of it though, I had almost no problems.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by BoneSnapDeez Mon Nov 07, 2016 12:26 pm

I haven't played Trails of Cold Steel yet but damn was TitS waaaaay too long. Still awesome though.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ElkinFencer10 Mon Nov 07, 2016 12:38 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:I haven't played Trails of Cold Steel yet but damn was TitS waaaaay too long. Still awesome though.

Yeah, Cold Steel took me around 50 hours.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by CFFJR Mon Nov 07, 2016 1:10 pm

ElkinFencer10 wrote:The only big drawback, in my opinion, is the performance. The game chugs along at certain places - especially in cut scenes - and drops to 15 or 20 frames per second. I don't know how the Playstation 3 version compares, but the Vita version had some serious drops.


Unfortunately for vita lovers, the frame rate issue is only present on that system. I beat CS1 and put 40 hours (so far) into CS2 on the ps3 and never had any performance problems. Which lines up with other people's experiences I've read about here and there.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Fragems Mon Nov 07, 2016 1:11 pm

1. 9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors (DS)
2. The Order 1886 (PS4)
3. The Division (PS4)
4. Until Dawn (PS4)
5. The Crew Wild Run Edition (PS4)
6. Mad Max (PS4)
7. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End (PS4)
8. Black Ops III (PS4)
9. The Last of Us Remastered + Left Behind DLC (PS4)
10. Tomb Raider Definitive Edition (XB1)
11. Rise of the Tomb Raider (XB1)
12. Gone Home (PS4)
13. Life is Strange (XB1)
14. Doom (2016) (PS4)
15. Journey (PS4)
16. Among the Sleep (PS4)
17. State of Decay (XB1)
18. Battlefield 1 (PC)


State of Decay (XB1)- State of decay is probably my favorite open world zombie survival game. Basically it's simple/streamlined enough that you aren't getting your ass handed to you unless you make stupid choices and the map is just about the right size to provide a little variety without making travel to tedious. The game does have some bug issues but is alot stabler then previous builds I had played on 360/PC and luckily while I was still hitting more bugs then I should have been I didn't hit any game breaking bugs that prevented progress like I had in my previous two play throughs :P. Havent touched the expansions yet, but will go back to them some day.

Battlefield 1 (PC)- This game changes up the campaign a bit with 5 mini campaigns with different characters around the world as opposed to a single stretched out campaign. Honestly I'm kind of mixed on the change though. The short stories keep things fresh with each one introducing different mechanics of the game while presenting compact stories that keep things fresh. The downside is there is no real central plot line you are just experience brief tid bits on various fronts of the war. Really you don't spend enough time with any of the characters to grow much of a connection to them and the story just feels flat with alot of visual set pieces to woo and awe you while you kill mountains of generic soldiers while moving from point A to B. The real meat of the game comes from the MP which is great especially now that true destructibility is back. However this game is a real monster when it comes to performance though and with my aging PC the game ran like total ass so I'd suggest getting it on XB1 or PS4 unless you have a newer rig. My PC can run BF4, Fallout 4, and Battlefront at high to ultra settings, but with BF1 the destructible environments just eat my CPU alive making it freeze and stutter constantly to the point that it's pretty much unplayable.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ElkinFencer10 Mon Nov 07, 2016 2:35 pm

MrPopo wrote:I'm having trouble wrapping my head around you calling it a massive time commitment and then you stating it's a 50 hour game. That's about what I expect an RPG to be.

Well, I'm not as big an RPG player as some here, so my expectation is 30-40 hours. The 50 hour mark is when I start thinking of an RPG as lengthy.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Xeogred Mon Nov 07, 2016 2:46 pm

20-30 hours = nice
50 hours = long
70+ = omg

I think Witcher 3 is in the OMG level. 30 hours in and still feels like I have a long ways to go.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Sarge Mon Nov 07, 2016 3:14 pm

I've gotten to the point where I'd rather an RPG be done in around 20-30 hours. At least if it's a JRPG. I feel there's a bit too much padding otherwise. (Dragon Quest VII is an exception; it really doesn't feel padded.)

Aaaanyway...

January:
1) Bonk's Adventure (NES)
2) Little Samson (NES)
3) Holy Diver (NES)
4) Holy Diver (NES) (legit!)
5) Mitsume Ga Tooru (NES)
6) TMNT II: The Arcade Game (NES)
7) Mighty Final Fight (NES)
8] Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! (NES)
9) Monster In My Pocket (NES)
10) Battle of Olympus (NES)
11) Gunstar Heroes (GEN) (repeat)
12) Dragon Age: Inquisition (PS4)
13) Dragon Age: Inquisition - Trespasser (PS4)
14) Captain America and the Avengers (NES)
15) StarTropics (NES)
16) Double Dragon II: The Revenge (NES) (save states)
17) Double Dragon II: The Revenge (NES) (legit)
18) Crisis Force (NES)
19) Esper Dream 2 (NES)
20) Felix the Cat (NES)
21) Moon Crystal (NES)
22) Panic Restaurant (NES)
23) Frankenstein (NES)
24) Crystalis (NES)
25) Nekketsu Kakutou Densetsu (NES)

February:
26) Killer Instinct (GB)
27) Mashin Hero Wataru Gaiden (NES)
28) Sly Spy (ARC)
29) The Red Star (unreleased XBOX, also on PS2)
30) Adventure Island 4 (NES)
31) Cocoron (NES)
32) Batman: Arkham Knight (PS4)
33) Xeodrifter (VITA)
34) Doom 2 (PC)
35) Brandish: The Dark Revenant (PSP)
36) Magical Pop'n (SNES)
37) The Ninja Warriors (SNES)
38) Phantasy Star (SMS)
39) Phantasy Star III (GEN)
40) Super Smash Bros. for 3DS (3DS)
41) Brandish: The Dark Revenant (Dela Mode)

March:
42) Freedom Planet (Milla, 82 lives lost) (PC)
43) Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis (PC)
44) Lara Croft Go (AND)
45) Oniken (PC)
46) Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam (3DS)
47) Batman: The Video Game (GB)
48) Batman: The Video Game (NES)
49) Super Spy Hunter

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

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

June:
85) Astra Superstars (SAT)
86) Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance (360)
87) Star Wars: Dark Forces 2 - Jedi Knight (PC)
88) Star Wars: Dark Forces (PC)
89) VVVVVV (PC)
90) Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Hyperstone Heist (GEN)
91) Broforce (PS4)
92) Momodora: Reverie Under the Moonlight (PC)
93) The Terminator (SCD)
94) Aban Hawkins and the 1001 Spikes (PC)
95) Electronic Super Joy (PC)
96) Golden Axe (GEN)
97) Double Dragon (GB)
98) Double Dragon II (GB)
99) Double Dragon III (GB)
100) Super Mario Land (GB)
101) Kirby's Dream Land (GB)

July:
102) Vapor Trail (GEN)
103) King Colossus (GEN)
104) Kirby: Planet Robobot (3DS)
105) Curse of Issyos (PC)
106) Alisia Dragoon (GEN)
107) Curse of the Crescent Isle DX (PC)
108) Tales of Hearts R (VITA)
109) Flashback (SCD)
110) Rayman Legends (VITA)
111) Wonder Boy in Monster World (GEN) (via 360)
112) Altered Beast (ARC)
113) Altered Beast (GEN)
114) Song of the Deep (PS4)

August:
115) Tatsunoko vs. Capcom (WII)
116) Another Metroid 2 Remake (AM2R) (PC)
117) Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse (GEN)
118) Streets of Rage (GEN)
119) Technobabylon (PC)
120) Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins (GB)
121) Ax Battler: A Legend of Golden Axe (GG)

September:
122) Xenoblade Chronicles X
123) Final Fight (ARC) (via Final Fight: Double Impact)
124) Magic Sword (ARC) (via Final Fight: Double Impact)
125) Castlevania: Circle of the Moon
126) Ratchet & Clank: Quest for Booty
127) X-Men (ARC)
128) Vanguard (ARC)
129) Trio the Punch (ARC)
130) Street Fighter 2': Special Champion Edition (GEN)
131) Snake Rattle 'n' Roll (NES)
132) Rad Racer (NES)
133) Super Mario Bros. (NES)

October:
134) JAWS (NES)
135) Chronicles of Teddy: Harmony of Exidus
136) Double Dragon II: The Revenge (PCE CD)
137) Splatterhouse (TG-16)
138) Super Dodge Ball (PCE)
139) Demon's Crest (SNES)
140) Splatterhouse 2 (GEN)
141) Super Ghouls 'N' Ghosts (SNES)
142) Stargate (SNES)
143) ActRaiser 2 (SNES)

November:
144) Castlevania (NES)

Why not? :)

Anyway, the game actually froze on me the other day in the hallway to Death. Guess I was always playing the PRG1 versions of the game, so I've never seen that happen. But having to go at it again actually let me experience a pretty cool moment: I took out Death without using Holy Water, and didn't take a hit. I had to make do with triple-shot Boomerangs, and a bit of deft dodging saw me win pretty quickly. Definitely a fist-pump moment. :D
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