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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Sarge Fri Dec 02, 2016 1:27 pm

Instead of posting the list again, here's my impressions of Lara's Nightmare. It's intense. Like, seriously so. You've got pretty limited ammunition, the zombies never stop coming, and you've got to poke around for those three rage skulls before taking on the big bad version. It looks like something straight out of DOOM, honestly.

Anyway, enemies don't stop coming in that final fight. You've got to get your shot in, but keep your head on a swivel so you don't get swarmed by zombies. When you do enough damage, it will pop up a force field and summon a bunch of zombies you have to kill. This gets really tricky when it starts throwing the demon dogs at you. Anyway, the most effective weapon for shooting the boss was the bolt-action rifle, since one good shot brings him to his next phase each time. You've got to time it right, though, because there are also rocks swirling around him that can block your shots.

Did I mention that you have no checkpoints with this? If you die, you get to do it all from scratch. It's short (and randomized), but again, intense. And if you get cornered, you're probably going to die. Lara's not in her fully-leveled form here, so it doesn't take much to die, and recovering from damage takes quite a bit of time. The main game, with the right skills, almost makes you into a tank. :P

Anyway, fun DLC, and way, way different from the main game. And with that, I'm pretty much done with all the content I'm going to play in Rise of the Tomb Raider. Again, totally worth the wait.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Blu Fri Dec 02, 2016 4:29 pm

1. Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nintendo Wii U - January 3
2. Fallout 4 - Xbox One - January 20
3. Yakuza 4 - PlayStation 3 - January 29
4. Yakuza: Dead Souls - PlayStation 3 - February 5
5. Yakuza 5 - PlayStation 3 - February 27
6. The Last of Us - PlayStation 3 - February 29
7. Yoshi's Wooly World - Nintendo Wii U - March 2
8. Bayonetta - Nintendo Wii U - March 6
9. Pikmin 3 - Nintendo Wii U - March 20
10. Pokémon Yellow - Nintendo 3DS VC - April 2
11. Wolf Among Us - Xbox One - April 11
12. Chrono Trigger - Nintendo Wii Virtual Console - October 18
13. Doom (4) - Xbox One - November 19
14. Torchlight 2 - PC - December 1

I loved the reboot of Doom. This was a marvelous game that I think did the series some true justice. It was frantic, it was scary, it was gory. It was a thrill to run around, it wasn't a chore to find the secrets or collectables. The game had a nice balance between going all out into the melee and risking your progress, to the conservative approach of gunning demons down. The glory kill system is a really neat one that is rewarding and challenging.

I had the itch for some Diablo II, but instead went with Torchlight II, which I had progressed in a little. Instead, I started a new character, flew through the entire game, and had a blast with it. I really love the soundtrack by Matt Uelman, and the gameplay is truly solid. Nice little hack-and-slash adventure to end the week.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by PresidentLeever Fri Dec 02, 2016 5:33 pm

1. In The Hunt (Easy, PS1 mode)(PS1, 1995)
2. Operation Logic Bomb/Ikari no Yousai (SNES, 1993)
3. Putty Squad (SNES, 1994)
4. Turrican II (C64, 1991)
5. Rendering Ranger R2 (SNES, 1995)
6. Super Turrican w/ Plus hack (NES, 1993)
7. Fester's Quest w/ Improvement v1.0 hack (NES, 1989)
8. Metroid Plus hack (NES, 1986)
9. TMNT II: BFtS (Normal)(GB, 1991)
10. Metroid II (GB, 1991)
11. Hyper Metroid (SNES, 2015)
12. Addams Family (SNES, 1992)
13. Nightmare Busters (SNES)
14. Umihara Kawase (SNES)
15. Wonder Boy III: DT (GG)
16. Wonder Boy in Monster World (MD)
17. You Have To Win The Game (PC)
18. Phantom 2040 (MD)
19. Phantom 2040 (SNES)
20. X-Men 2: Clone Wars (MD, 1995)
21. X-Men: Mutant Apocalypse (SNES, 1994)
22. Castlevania: Circle of the Moon (GBA)
23. Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance (GBA) - Normal & Hard
24. Super Genjin 2 (SNES, 1995)
25. Star Fox 2 Beta (SNES) - Normal & Hard
26. TMNT: Tournament Fighters (SNES)
27. Shovel Knight & Plague Knight's expansion (PC)
28. Flying Hero (SNES, 1992)
29. Ganbare! Daiku no Gen-san (SNES)
30. Torneko no Daibouken (SNES)
31. Dragon Quest (SNES)
32. Dragon Quest II (SNES)
33. Shining Force w/ Gameplay improvement v1.0 hack (MD)
34. Sonic: Luv Da Flo Edition hack (MD)
35. Sonic 2: Keep Da Flo Edition hack (MD)
36. Batman Returns (SNES)
37. Animaniacs (SNES)
38. Animaniacs (MD)
39. X-Men (ARC, 1992)
40. Contra (ARC, 1987) - Infinite credits
41. Super Contra (ARC, 1988) - 6 credits (infinite doesn't work), 7 lives per credit
42. Magic Sword (ARC, 1990)
43. Shadow Dancer (ARC, 1989)
44. ESWAT (ARC, 1989) - w/ a save state at last level (where credits stop working)
45. Gun.Smoke (ARC, 1985) - w/ many save states
46. Valkyrie no Densetsu (ARC, 1989) - Mini-reviews, retro vgm tribute, rom hacks, chip music, mockups, misc. lists
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Exhuminator Sat Dec 03, 2016 3:15 am

127. Exile II: Janen no Jishou | PCECD | 1992 | 6/10

I decided after beating Exile I'd go ahead and do the sequel. So I started playing Exile: Wicked Phenomenon first. Right off the bat the difficulty was insane, and I immediately assumed Working Designs had screwed up the game. I was right:

"On Exile 2 it was an issue of limited number of modifications because we weren't doing the game reprogramming, Telenet was. It was a small number of tries. And on the second-to last time, we had it *almost* right, so we added like +1 to the monsters, but it was like that scene with the fat guy in Meaning of Life where the waiter gives him that one wafer and he explodes. That +1 exceeded some limit internally and made the monsters exponentially harder rather than incrementally. Since it was our last "fix" and we had production discs, I thought we were screwed and had made an unwinnable game. Fortunately, with some time and special strategies, we found out you could finish it. We made one of the hardest games ever - by accident." -Vic Ireland ( )

Myself not having the patience today for yet another Working Designs localization fiasco, decided instead to play the original Japanese version. Which in turn is way too easy. :lol: Seriously Exile II: Janen no Jishou is a piece of cake. I beat the game in an hour and a half barely even trying.


That's not to say Exile II doesn't have some improvements over the original. It's got better graphics, better level designs, the ability to switch between four main characters at any time, a more thoroughly realized middle eastern theme, and far more streamlined pacing. That means no more derpy "puzzles" or maze dungeons thankfully. However the OST isn't nearly as good as the original, opting for more classically themed middle eastern orchestration. Which I guess fits the mood and all but is kind of boring musically.


That said, there's no reason to bother with the other player characters, when none of them are as good as Sadler. There are far less cutscenes this time, with lots of walls of text instead. Having played through the game in Japanese I didn't know what was going on anyway. It really feels like the developers were short on cash and time with Exile II, but what's here is still pretty decent all things considered. If you enjoy the action portions of ActRaiser, you'll probably like this, as that's what it reminds me of. A nice little action-RPG/platformer snack. But if you do choose to play Exile II, make sure it's the original Japanese version. At least until some intrepid hacker combines the Working Design translation with the Japanese original balancing.

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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by BoneSnapDeez Sat Dec 03, 2016 1:13 pm

I bought the North American game because I'm insane. Gonna attempt it soon. January maybe.

Working Designs is both awesome and infuriating.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by PresidentLeever Sat Dec 03, 2016 2:54 pm - Mini-reviews, retro vgm tribute, rom hacks, chip music, mockups, misc. lists
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Exhuminator Sat Dec 03, 2016 3:46 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:I bought the North American game because I'm insane.

You will need to be insane to deal with massive amount of grinding you'll have to do up front to stand a chance.
BoneSnapDeez wrote:Working Designs is both awesome and infuriating.

I agree. They really meant well despite questionable localization practices, but their cardinal sin for me was messing with the difficulty of the games. That's just dumb IMO. At least put an option in the option menu to choose "original" or "Irelandized" difficulty stats.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ElkinFencer10 Sat Dec 03, 2016 11:46 pm

Games Beaten in 2016 So Far - 115

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 (13 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
60. 1943: Battle of Midway - NES - June 6
61. Mirror's Edge: Catalyst - Playstation 4 - June 12
62. Fire Emblem: Mystery of the Emblem - SNES - June 13
63. Homefront: The Revolution - Playstation 4 - June 15
64. Gone Home - Playstation 4 - June 15
65. Double Dragon Neon - Playstation 3 - June 16
66. Vanquish - Playstation 3 - June 17
67. Epic Dumpster Bear - Wii U - June 20
68. B3: Game Expo for Bees - Wii U - June 21

July (7 Games Beaten)
69. Raiden V - Xbox One - July 16
70. Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE - Wii U - July 16
71. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3 FES - Playstation 2 - July 23
72. Lost Sea - Playstation 4 - July 24
73. Far Cry Primal - Playstation 4 - July 27
74. Black - Playstation 2 - July 28
75. Until Dawn - Playstation 4 - July 31

August (15 Games Beaten)
76. Divine Sealing - Mega Drive - August 1
77. Gal*Gun: Double Peace - Playstation 4 - August 2
78. Valkyria Chronicles II - PSP - August 5
79. Breach and Clear - Vita - August 10
80. Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem - Gamecube - August 12
81. Metal Gear Solid - Playstation - August 15
82. Hello Kitty Kruisers - Wii U - August 16
83. Monster Monpiece - Vita - August 17
84. Army Men: Major Malfunction - Xbox - August 17
85. Layers of Fear - Steam - August 18
86. Kirby: Planet Robobot- 3DS - August 19
87. Disaster: Day of Crisis - Wii - August 20
88. Caladrius Blaze - PlayStation 4 - August 20
89. Söldner-X 2: Final Prototype - Vita - August 22
90. Saints Row IV - PS4 - August 30

September (8 Games Beaten)
91. Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA X - PS4 - September 2
92. Attack on Titan - PS4 - September 3
93. SOMA - Steam - September 5
94. Assault Suit Leynos - PS4 - September 8
95. Attack of the Friday Monsters! - 3DS - September 17
96. The Witcher - - September 19
97. GunValkyrie - Xbox - September 21
98. P.N.03 - Gamecube - September 22

October (10 Games Beaten)
99. XCOM 2 - PS4 - October 3
100. Gears of War: Judgement - Xbox 360 - October 8
101. Ninja Pizza Girl - Wii U - October 8
102. Depth Hunter 2: Deep Dive - Steam - October 9
103. EVE: Valkyrie - PlayStation 4 - October 14
104. Gears of War 4 - Xbox One - October 18
105. Until Dawn: Rush of Blood - PlayStation 4 - October 18
106. Battlefield 1 - PlayStation 4 - October 20
107. EVE: Gunjack - PlayStation 4 - October 20
108. Titanfall 2 - PlayStation 4 - October 30

November (6 Games Beaten)
109. The Sky Crawlers: Innocent Aces - Wii - November 3
110. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel - Vita - November 6
111. Deus Ex: Human Revolution - Wii U - November 11
112. State of Decay - Xbox One - November 15
113. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare - PlayStation 4 - November 20
114. Shadow Complex Remastered - PlayStation 4 - November 22

December (1 Game Beaten)
115. The Legendary Axe - TurboGrafx-16 - December 3

115. The Legendary Axe - TurboGrafx-16 - December 3


Seeing some of the talk about TurboGrafx CD RPGs lately and my own brainstorming about the possibility of expanding my own NEC collection has sparked a bit of renewed interest in the TurboGrafx-16 for me. I was playing a bit of Blazing Lazers tonight (my favorite TG16 game) and I thought "You know, I never was able to get very far in Legendary Axe; I should give that a shot tonight." Well, it took me about five hours of almost non-stop play (just a 30 minute break between Game Over screens to pee and grab a slice of pizza), but I finally managed to finish the game.


For those of you who may be unfamiliar with the game, Legendary Axe was a launch title for the TurboGrafx-16 in America and a damn good platformer with hack-and-slash combat. The game is broken into five levels (technically six, but the six zone is just the final boss), each with a unique theme. The basic plot is that you're a barbarian (whom I will call Harambe), and you're trying to save your barbarian girlfriend (whom I will call Harambina) from some evil demon or something (whom I will call Kozuki). As you progress through the game, you'll fill your axe's power meter. The higher the meter, the stronger your attack is (it drains when you attack, but it refills automatically), and when you get enough power-ups to max out the meter, your attack becomes ridiculously powerful and dramatic.


The soundtrack is fantastic, and the visuals are quite good (especially if you have your TurboGrafx modded to output composite like I do). My only gripe with the game is the difficulty curve. The first stage can feel challenging at first if you're not used to the controls (or, if you're like me, forget that you have the jump button set to turbo and spend 20 minutes trying to figure out why you can't jump high enough to get to the next part of the level), but once you get a feel for the controls and the mechanics of the game, the first stage becomes a cake walk. Not gonna lie, the spider sub-boss always frustrates me, but I think that's as much because I hate giant spiders as it is because of any actual difficulty. Anyway, the second level isn't much more challenging than the first. Level three shows some moderate increase in difficulty, but nothing too bad if you don't rush ahead blindly. The boss for level three is a pain in the ass, but level four is where the difficulty really spikes. The stage itself is much more challenging and much longer than the previous one, and the level boss is a bitch. I've seen it described several times as the hardest boss in the game, and while I think that title goes to the level five boss, it's a close second. Speaking of level five, Jesus Christ, that level is balls hard, and it's longer than the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway. After all that (and those last two levels took a LOT of repeat gameplay and memorization with game over screen after game over screen), the final boss is extremely anti-climactic. It mostly just jumps around, and while it's gigantic and easy to get crushed by, once you get a feel for his patter, all you have to do is make sure that you stay crouched and between his legs, you can just slash away at his ankles for a few minutes until he dies. I think that boss only killed me once (though I slipped up and nearly died the second time).


The movement controls can feel a bit heavier and slower than I'd like, but the game is so damn well made that it's more than worth it to be patient and get a feel for them. The Legendary Axe doesn't quite take the crown of my favorite TurboGrafx-16 game away from Blazing Lasers, but it definitely comes in at a damn close second. While it's not dirt cheap (it is a TurboGrafx-16 game, after all), you can find a copy for around $30, and it's absolutely worth that much. Honestly, I'd say you'd be getting your money's worth in terms of fun and quality up to $45 or $50, though I might be a bit biased given my love for the console. Point is, this game is fantastic, and you should absolutely play it any way that you can.
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by BoneSnapDeez Sun Dec 04, 2016 12:00 am

First 50:
1. Tenchi Sōzō (Super Famicom)
2. Eternal Senia (Steam)
3. Tombs & Treasure (NES)
4. Magic Knight Rayearth (Super Famicom)
5. Zelda no Densetsu: The Hyrule Fantasy (Famicom Disk System)
6. Zelda II: The Adventure of Link (NES)
7. Seiken Psycho Caliber: Majū no Mori Densetsu (Famicom Disk System)
8. Deep Dungeon: Madō Senki (Famicom Disk System)
9. Deep Dungeon II: Yūshi no Monshō (Famicom Disk System)
10. Suishō no Dragon (Famicom Disk System)
11. Dandy: Zeuon no Fukkatsu (Famicom Disk System)
12. Lagoon (SNES)
13. Contra (NES)
14. Super C (NES)
15. Wonder Boy (Sega Master System)
16. OutRun (Sega Master System)
17. OutRun (Genesis)
18. Ninja Gaiden (NES)
19. Written in the Sky (Steam)
20. Wendy: Every Witch Way (Game Boy Color)
21. Mario Bros. (NES)
22. Popeye (NES)
23. Super Mario Bros. (NES)
24. Super Mario Bros. 2 (Famicom Disk System)
25. Phantasy Star II Eusis's Text Adventure (Steam - Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Classics)
26. Phantasy Star II Nei's Text Adventure (Steam - Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Classics)
27. Phantasy Star II Rudger's Text Adventure (Steam - Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Classics)
28. Phantasy Star II Anne's Text Adventure (Steam - Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Classics)
29. Phantasy Star II Huey's Text Adventure (Steam - Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Classics)
30. Phantasy Star II Kinds's Text Adventure (Steam - Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Classics)
31. Phantasy Star II Amia's Text Adventure (Steam - Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Classics)
32. Phantasy Star II Shilka's Text Adventure (Steam - Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Classics)
33. Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic (Famicom Disk System)
34. Super Mario Bros. 2 (NES)
35. Super Mario Advance (Game Boy Advance)
36. Gunman Clive (Nintendo eShop)
37. Zaxxon (Xbox 360 - Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection)
38. Zaxxon (Atari 2600)
39. Zaxxon (Intellivision)
40. Zaxxon (ColecoVision)
41. Cosmic Avenger (ColecoVision)
42. Mr. Do! (ColecoVision)
43. Pepper II (ColecoVision)
44. Kirby's Dream Land (Game Boy)
45. Sakura Spirit (Steam)
46. Ys Eternal (PC)
47. Moon Patrol (Game Boy Color - Arcade Hits: Moon Patrol & Spy Hunter)
48. Ember Kaboom (Steam)
49. Hoshi no Kābī: Yume no Izumi no Monogatari (Famicom)
50. Guardian Heroes (Saturn)

51. Akumajō Dracula (Famicom Disk System)
52. Castlevania (NES)
53. Classic NES Series: Castlevania (Game Boy Advance)
54. Guardian Heroes (Xbox Live Arcade)
55. Metal Slug (Neo Geo MVS)
56. Metal Slug 2 (Neo Geo MVS)
57. Metal Slug 3 (Neo Geo MVS)
58. Soul of Darkness (DSiWare)
59. Code of Princess (3DS)
60. Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES)
61. Super Mario Land (Game Boy)
62. The Legend of Zelda 2: Link no Bōken (Famicom Disk System)
63. Phantasy Star Online: Blue Burst (PC)
64. Shan Gui (Steam)
65. Space Fury (ColecoVision)
66. Smurf: Rescue in Gargamel's Castle (ColecoVision)
67. Gateway to Apshai (ColecoVision)
68. MURI (Steam)
69. Pink Hour (Steam)
70. Pink Heaven (Steam)
71. Planetarian: The Reverie of a Little Planet (Steam)
72. Princess Remedy in a World of Hurt (Steam)
73. Haunted House (Atari 2600)
74. Gremlins (Atari 2600)
75. Alien (Atari 2600)
76. Xenophobe (Xbox - Midway Arcade Treasures 2)
77. Frankenstein's Monster (Atari 2600)
78. Ghost Manor / Spike's Peak (Atari 2600)
79. Higurashi When They Cry Hou - Ch.1 Onikakushi (Steam)
80. Dracula II: Noroi no Fūin (Famicom Disk System)
81. Castlevania II: Simon's Quest (NES)
82. Beneath the Cherry Trees (Steam)
83. Voices from the Sea (Steam)
84. Mushihimesama (Steam)
85. Sonic CD (Steam)
86. Shovel Knight (Wii U)
87. Super Mario World (SNES)
88. Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins (Game Boy)
89. Operation C (Game Boy)
90. Metroid (Famicom Disk System)
91. Metroid (NES)
92. Breath of Fire (SNES)
93. Elisa: The Innkeeper - Prequel (Steam)
94. Cally's Caves 3 (Steam)
95. eden* (Steam)

So, of the handful of visual novels I have played this year there are two I'd consider outstanding. Planetarian: The Reverie of a Little Planet and, this most recent discovery, eden*. Incidentally, both have a similar plot involving an apocalyptic world, a gruff male protagonist, and a mysterious female heroine.
While Planetarian featured a post-apocalyptic setting, the story of eden* occurs in a pre-apocalyptic time. Scientists discover that a star will collide with Earth, destroying the planet completely. A timeframe of one hundred years is approximated before Earth is toast. Thus begins a project to remove all humans from the planet and into outer space. Scientists create superhuman beings called felixes to develop the space travel technology and hasten Earth's evacuation.

The primary events of eden* occur close to the end of the world. The protagonist, a soldier named Ryou, is tasked with guarding Shion who's the most advanced felix and engineer of the space travel program. The game switches narrative styles frequently, from first-person (Ryou's thoughts) to third person where he's actually in the visual frames and speaking. It's all done very seamlessly.
The story is extremely well-written. There's very little action in the second half, but plenty of introspection and discussions on coping with grief and loss. The tale isn't completely linear, as there are several flashback sequences and some serious hints about what's to come, but all loose ends are tied up at the end. And yes, this one is a tearjerker.

This weighty tale is further bolstered by the phenomenal aesthetics. The game looks completely unlike most VNs. In lieu of the typical cut-and-paste waist-up character scenes, the game instead features dynamic cinematic shots with characters shown at all angles and positions. Those speaking are (slightly) animated, with moving mouths and blinking eyes. Voice acting is top-notch. The artwork itself is crisp, clean, and extremely professional. The characters looks great, and I even found myself admiring their outfits which is something I thought I'd never say. The music is appropriately alternates between charming and morose, and the option to listen to the OST and view specific still shots upon completing the game was more than welcome.

One negative aspect involves the bothersome anime and video game clichés regarding the design of the characters themselves. All the humans are far too young for whatever professions they hold. This is explained away by them be "prodigies" or whatnot, but it all looks very silly. The transformation of Ryou is central to the game, but there's way too much time spent at the beginning explaining how he's a total badass, hates everyone, kills without mercy, whatever. Planetarian, in contrast, does a much better job with their jaded soldier by employing a "show don't tell" approach. And then there's the felixes. Oh dear. These are well-written likable characters but I'm sure you can guess what they look like. Yes, they are super-geniuses who happen to look like barely-teenaged girls with frilly dresses. The game even goes full weeb at once point and takes time to explain that nothing pervy is going on because they're ackshully "100 years old." Yikes.

The abovementioned is a small blemish in an otherwise fantastic game. I'd highly recommend it to those who have never played or visual novel, or anyone searching for one of the greats. If this were an actual paper novel I'd say "I couldn't put it down."
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by PresidentLeever Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:44 am

47. Blue's Journey (ARC, 1991)
48. Donpachi (ARC, 1995) - Mini-reviews, retro vgm tribute, rom hacks, chip music, mockups, misc. lists
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