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ElkinFencer10
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ElkinFencer10 Thu Dec 08, 2016 4:28 pm

NOPE, I JUST DIDN'T READ THE WHOLE THING. Teacher at the end of the day equals very careless reading. :oops: :oops: :oops: :oops: :oops:
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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Xeogred
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Xeogred Thu Dec 08, 2016 6:40 pm

My first and only complete run of FF8 back in the day was mostly 100% (outside of the cards). But since then, I've counted and have failed to replay the game three times by this point. There is so much I love about it, but...

- The magic draw system ticks my OCD way too hard. Whenever new magic pops up I have to get 100 for every character again before moving on. This probably adds hours of needless time to the clock.
- The Junction system is horrible, namely because the game frequently switches from Squall to Laguna, and if your Junction setup does not perfectly transfer over to someone of Laguna's party? You have to reconfigure your entire Junction setup. Last time I remember, this just got more and more taxing as the game went as your Junction's could get more complex. It was a damn headache. The game seriously needed a "Save Junction Setup" feature. I don't really care for how the summons themselves work in this one either.

:evil:

I'm glad FF15 went for the aesthetics of FF7/FF8 though. I dig that weird urban fantasy.
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by PartridgeSenpai Thu Dec 08, 2016 11:25 pm

Partridge Senpai's 2016 Beaten List
1-50

51. Axiom Verge
52. Otomedius Excellent
53. JUMP Ultimate Stars
54. Dynasty Warriors 3
55. Fire Emblem if: Byakuya (Birthright)
56. Fire Emblem if: Anya (Conquest)
57. Fire Emblem if: Invisible Kingdom (Revelations)
58. Stubbs the Zombie
59. Mori Mori Slime
60. Metal Slug 7
60. Dream Mix TV: World Fighters
61. Youkai Watch
62. Legacy of Ys: Book 1

63. Legacy of Ys: Book II (DS)

As I said earlier in the RPG Progress thread, this is an old-school sequel through and through. It doesn't rapidly change the formula at all, and could even, to an extent, be mistaken for its predecessor at first glance. However, like from Doom to Doom 2, there are many subtle changes that make this game distinct from its predecessor, and in many ways objetively better. It's similar to the last game, but they took everything good about the last game and made it better.

Music is much better, graphics are a little better and noticeably different (far less reused sprites and resources than I would've imagined for a games so often bundled together on one disc/card), combat is totally revamped (on an engine level) to make bumping more intuitive and allows for combos as well as much of the game being geared towards utilizing your new offensive magic powers to great effect. This in turn leads to MUCH better boss battles. The boss battles in this game were SOOOO great, and some were very legitimately challenging (although the barrier spell is a bit too broken, imo, and kinda makes the final boss pointless, but whatever (you don't GOTTA use it after all (even though I did :oops: ))). My only warning about the port though comes from the boss battles. Some of the bosses REALLY make the framerate struggle, and although it isn't gamebreaking by any means (just like it isn't in most old shmups or Metal Slug-type ventures), it still can interfere with the bump system and make things harder than they should be at time, though they were few and far between.

Verdict: Very Recommended. A fantastic action RPG! Probably one of the best old-school ones out there, and definitely one of my favorite I've played. I actually own Oath in Felghana and Memories of Celceta for PSP and Vita respectively, so they're very tempting on my "next to play" list :3
Last edited by PartridgeSenpai on Fri Dec 09, 2016 11:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Sarge
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Sarge Thu Dec 08, 2016 11:44 pm

Axiom Verge is down. Final stats the first time were around 10:05, 76% items, 90% map. Final stats after collecting a bit more were 12:11, 81-82%, and 96% map. Still got a lot I need to find, not sure if I'm going to or not yet.

My general impressions are that it's very, very good. Definitely one of the best Metroid clones out there. It does interesting things with traversal methods. At the same time, I'm not sure it's quite worthy of the lavish praise on the game, but I know I wanted to get back to it every time I got in from work, so that's a good sign.

I'd probably say it's 9/10 territory. Very, very good, definitely in the running for best game played this year. Strangely enough, I actually liked another game I played a tiny bit more overall, Rex Rocket, and it seems like no one knows about that one!

I will try to expound a bit more tomorrow; I'm not up to typing all that I want to right now.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by PresidentLeever Fri Dec 09, 2016 2:58 am

Out Zone (ARC, 1990)
Image Image

I didn't know about it until recently since it's an arcade exclusive, but it's one of Toaplan's best up to this point I think. I especially liked how they weaved the environment into the gameplay in cool new ways, like the third boss that cuts off pieces of ground with a giant laser. Each of the seven levels feels pretty unique, the action is usually fast and intense thanks in part to good smart bomb placement and the fuel mechanic (which works like in Wonder Boy), and all but one weapon are very useful. There's no weapon inventory, but you can at least avoid the worst one, the flamethrower, pretty easily. I generally stuck with the green and pink weapons, since they let you strafe. Another thing that's pretty cool is that they put cameos from three earlier games in this one, triggered based on your score I think, and a hidden escort mission featuring their mascot in the first level, with a bunch of points as a reward.

The game looks great for 1990, with careful attention to detail given to pretty much every tile. Most bosses are huge, and some have several destructible parts. As for the music, pretty much all the songs are on par with the great Hellfire and Zero Wing ost's in terms of composition while the FM synth work is solid but not quite top tier for the YM3812 chip. You'd probably think it was made at the same time as those other two just from listening to it. This was a couple of years before they started using samples in the music, and their synth drums aren't the best.

I can see why it wasn't ported at the time; top down/vertical scrolling run 'n guns weren't as popular as sidescrolling ones at that point and there's plenty of slowdown in some segments, of the kind where the game abruptly goes back and forth between slow and normal. The PS1 or Saturn could've handled it well, but I think they were bankrupt by that point.

I also was never a big fan of this kind of design where you get huge difficulty spikes for dying once later in the game. They do give you a power up or two near the checkpoints and starting with 3 bombs isn't bad (however if you had saved up to the maximum of 10, you lose 7 bombs - ouch!), but what you really need is speed, an annoyingly rare power up, and there are checkpoints right before bosses too. Perhaps playing it in 2-player helps here, though I suspect it would cause more slowdown as well. I should also mention that the game loops, and there's no ending cutscene at all in non-JP versions from what I've gathered. The second loop is frustratingly hard already in the first level (the changes in the second loop seem separate from the difficulty level that you pick in the options, with enemies shooting sooner and faster than before), so I'm content with having beaten the first.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by dsheinem Fri Dec 09, 2016 9:27 am

Games Beaten 2016

First 50:
Spirits of Xanadu - PC
Tales From the Borderlands: Episode 1 - PC
Operation C - Game Boy
That Dragon, Cancer - PC
Contra - NES
Super C - NES
Contra III - The Alien Wars - SNES
Tekken - PS1
The King of Fighters '99 - PS1
Street Fighter Alpha - PS1
Call of Duty: Black Ops III - PS4
Three Fourths Home - PC
Firewatch - PS4
Street Fighter V - PS4
Far Cry: Primal - PS4
Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax - PS3
BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma EXTEND - Xbox One
Android Assault Cactus - PS4
Table Top Racing - Vita
The Room - iOS
JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: All-Star Battle - PS3
The Room 2 - iOS
Broforce - PS4
Toybox Turbos - PC
Peggle 2 - PS4
R-Type (R-Type Dimensions) - 360
The Room 3 - iOS
Rampage - SMS
Doom (2016) - PS4
Dungeon Siege III - - 360
Uncharted 4 - A Thief's End - PS4
NES Remix - Wii U
Moon Chronicles: Episode 1 - 3DS
Outrun 3D - 3DS
Box Boy - 3DS
Splatoon - - Wii U
Nano Assault Neo X - PS4
Mamorukun Curse! - PS3
Hyperburner - iOS
The Beginner's Guide - PC
Halo 5: Guardians - Xbox One
POP: Methodology Experiment 1 - PC
Amplitude - - PS4
Slave of God - PC
Power Drift 3D - 3DS
Bio-Hazard Battle - Genesis
Thunder Force II - Genesis
Thunder Force III - Genesis
Lightening Force - Genesis
DiRT: Showdown - PC

Battleborn - PC
140 - PC
Last Duel - Arcade (PSP)
Alien on the Run - 3DS
Undead Bowling - 3DS
Chain Blaster - 3DS
Runny Egg - 3DS
Bound - PS4
Parasite Eve - PS1
Destiny - PS4
Destiny: The Dark Below - PS4
Destiny: The House of Wolves - PS4
Destiny: The Taken King - PS4
Otomedius Excellent - 360
Crimsonland - PC
Planet of the Eyes - PC
Destiny: Rise of Iron - PS4
The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing: Final Cut - PC
Eve Valkyrie: Gunjack - PSVR
Elegy for a Dead World - PC
SOMA - PC
The Typing of the Dead: Overkill - PC
Until Dawn: Rush of Blood - PSVR
Actual Sunlight - Vita
Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare - Jackal Assault VR - PSVR
Letter Quest: Grimm's Journey Remastered - Vita
Thumper - PSVR
Burrito Bison: Launcha Libre - iOS
Trackmania Turbo (VR Campaign) - PSVR
Gears of War 4 - Xbox One
Caladrius Blaze - PS4 *new*
Dariusburst Chronicles - - PC *new*
Assault Suit Leynos - PS4 *new*
Touhou Genso Rondo: Bullet Ballet - PS4 *new*

Total: 84


Previously: 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010


The update in which I play recent Japanese 2D games...

Caladrius Blaze is a pretty competent bullet hell shmup that gave me more than a few headaches on my way to what I considered to be a reasonable clear. There are a nice assortment of characters/ships (too many, probably) - but the graphics are very nice, the sense of speed is well done, and the little in-between stages (I played Arcade mode) are neat ideas. I really liked the powerup system and the various weapons each ship had, and would recommend it to folks who like more recent Cave games.

Dariusburst Chronicles I am counting as beaten since I played through Arcade mode, but there's a lot more here that I can spend time with before I am ready to really pronounce judgment on the game. I tend to gravitate toward verts instead of horis, but this one is fairly compelling in its own right. I look forward to more time with this.

Assault Suit Leynos was the standout in this bunch of games for me. I had only played around with Target Earth previously (and with Cybernator), but I don't remember it being nearly as good as this. The updated graphics are very well done, the health system makes it seem very modern, and the story is far better than most in the genre. This one is currently on sale for $12 on the PSN, and I think pretty much anyone here would dig it.

Touhou Genso Rondo: Bullet Ballet was not what I expected, but for that I am actually glad. I didn't know, going in, that this was a shmup-fighter along the lines of an old Suguri ("Perfect Edition") game I played and enjoyed some years ago. It is better than that game, if a quite a bit easier (I was able to clear story mode with a few characters with very little difficulty). In any case, it is nice fan service and a great title that I would also suggest people look into.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ElkinFencer10 Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:37 am

I've got Bullet Ballet, but I haven't played it yet. I may fire that up this weekend.
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by dsheinem Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:40 am

ElkinFencer10 wrote:I've got Bullet Ballet, but I haven't played it yet. I may fire that up this weekend.


I think there's an online mode if you want to give multiplayer a try. Let me know.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Sarge Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:02 pm

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)
145) Chip 'N' Dale's Rescue Rangers 2 (NES)
146) Chip 'N' Dale's Rescue Rangers (NES)
147) Gain Ground (GEN)
148) ActRaiser 2 (legit) (SNES)
149) The Rocketeer (NES)
150) Adventures in the Magic Kingdom (NES)
151) Kung Fu
152) Spartan X 2
153) Xexyz (NES)
154) Warlock Bentspine (PC)
155) Rise of the Tomb Raider (PS4)
156) Rise of the Tomb Raider - Baba Yaga: The Temple of the Witch (PS4) (DLC)
157) Rise of the Tomb Raider - Cold Darkness Awakened (PS4) (DLC)
158) Rise of the Tomb Raider - Blood Ties (PS4) (DLC)


December:
159) Rise of the Tomb Raider - Lara's Nightmare (PS4) (DLC)
160) Titanfall 2 (PS4)
161) Soul Blade (PSX)
162) Axiom Verge (PC)

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So, I promised to talk a bit about Axiom Verge. And so I shall! I waited and waited and waited for a DRM-free copy to drop on GOG, and it's apparently something that will never happen. But with GameTrust and IndieBox teaming up, they released a physical, DRM-free copy for the low, low price of $20. And it comes with a Steam key, so if it gets updated any more, I can stay on top of it.

Really, the game has been praised to the high heavens. Some reviews are so effusive that you'd think it was even better than its obvious inspiration, Metroid. But looking at Metacritic, the PS4 version is only sitting at 84, and it's definitely better than that. Let's dive in, shall we?

First of all, I don't want to hit much in the way of the story. What's here is pretty minimalisitic, and very intriguing, but in the end it doesn't feel like there's much of a resolution to anything. It's left ambiguous, probably intentionally. I don't know if there might be a sequel coming down the pike or not, but the story is certainly rife for exploring more. And finishing the game either under the 4-hour mark or getting 80%+ on items and map coverage leaves you with a scene that's decidedly cliffhanger-ish. I intentionally avoided almost all information about the game until I finished it the first time. The only thing I looked up was how many weapons there were. If you don't want to read about all the powerups and weapons, avert your eyes now!

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Yeah, there are a bunch of those. You have a ridiculous array of death-dealing instruments. And the more you explore, the more you're going to find. The default weapon is very much base Metroid. You can get a triple shot, reflecting shot, the Kilver which is a short-range shotgun-style weapon, standard stuff like that, but there's some oddball weapons, too. The Voranj sends lightning blasts out in a huge pattern, but is weak. The lightning gun is crazy overpowered, locking on to an enemy and continuously hitting until they're dead. There's a weapon that feels distinctly like a multi-directional Diskarmor from Rygar. One particularly devious bit of puzzling will see you snag a Flamethrower, and that thing is really powerful in certain areas. There are 23 weapons in total, although three of them are super-secret weapons that you can only find in glitched secret worlds, and there is only one of them generated per save file. I ended up with the Heat Seeker, a really powerful homing shot that is actually even more powerful than the lightning gun.

Image

There are also many powerups for your weapons, and for traversal methods. You can snag range, size, and power upgrades for your weapons, although sometimes they don't apply to certain ones. You'll also find the standard health upgrades. Then there are the cool ways to get around. Sure, you get some standard stuff like the high jump, and you get a drill that takes the place of bombs. But eventually, you'll get some more interesting stuff like a lab coat that lets you "glitch" through walls. This will upgrade a few times through the game. You also have a glitch gun that can affect the environment and enemies. It's certainly an interesting conceit, because a few puzzles rely on glitching enemies to achieve your goals, and it also lends to a sort of "is this really happening" vibe.

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Small gaps are also fun. We all know about Samus' ability to roll up for small passages. Well, Trace can't do that. Instead, he gets a remote drone that he can use to navigate the passages. Eventually, you'll get the ability to throw that further, which also pairs with one of the last abilities, being able to warp to where the drone is. Wild stuff, that. There's also a shout-out to Bionic Commando with a biological-looking grappling hook, and the physics behave almost just like the NES game. Cool stuff!

I like a lot of the look of the game, but some of it bothers me as well. The game clearly shoots for a sort of biological horror / H.R. Giger-style look, and it largely succeeds. My only real gripe is that while the game is tile-based, it looks too tile-based. A lot of platformers attempt to hide this a little better, including Metroid, and this one doesn't do that quite as well. It's still solid, though, because the alien vibe is always there, the creatures are monstrous and well-designed, and everything just feels... wrong, but in the way that the designer intended. That couples with the soundtrack, a thumping, pulsing, heavy-bass score that goes really well with the sort of biological/mechanical motif.

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With all those weapons, you'd think combat was great, and eventually it gets there, but enemies feel very bullet-spongey early on, especially if you haven't explored well and gotten a few weapon powerups. This gets better, but the game overall feels a bit more combat-focused than a Super Metroid, where atmosphere is king and most enemies are felled pretty rapidly. This game feels much more like if Super Metroid had held quite a bit closer to the original game than it did.

Image

I mentioned the secret glitched worlds earlier, and those are pretty slick, too. You'll always find two powerups in them. You'll know you're close to one when the screen starts to get a strong CRT scanline effect with some distortion. Apparently the location of these is randomized from game to game, and the layouts are as well. No drill-wall secrets, though, so just get your stuff and get out!

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Overall, I really, really enjoyed my time with the game. I know a game has its hooks in when the first thing I want to do when I get home is play the game, so this totally succeeds on that front. If you've got a strong hankering for a Metroid game, and you've blown through AM2R, this is a worthy competitor. Play it. You may love it more than I did. 9/10 territory at minimum.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by dsheinem Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:17 pm

great write up, Sarge

If we ever do make the front page of this site something for reviews of newer retro-inspired games, these are the kinds of things that would be a great addition to the site.
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