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Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:08 pm
by BoneSnapDeez
ElkinFencer10 wrote:I'm not religious, but I find the myths and lore surrounding angels, demons, the afterlife, etc. to be fascinating, so I naturally gravitate towards games that play into that theme. It's why I loved Bayonetta so much and why I'm such a huge fan of the Shin Megami Tensei series.


Brah...
http://www.hardcoregaming101.net/exile/exile.htm

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:12 pm
by Sarge
As a specifically Christian religious person, I can't even count the number of ways that SMT and its ilk gets things wrong. But then, it's filtered through a Japanese video game, so of course it's messed up. I'm guessing it's not really any more accurate with all the other gods they portray, either.

Darksiders is a bit similar, but somehow bothers me less because it's over-the-top, comic book-style stuff.

(The games are still good, but man. I wish some guys would take some theology classes or something.)

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:41 pm
by marurun
Sarge wrote:As a specifically Christian religious person, I can't even count the number of ways that SMT and its ilk gets things wrong. But then, it's filtered through a Japanese video game, so of course it's messed up.
...
(The games are still good, but man. I wish some guys would take some theology classes or something.)


It's filtered through Japan, and THEN through a video game. Japan is a pretty typical Asian nation in regards to religion. If you ask the Japanese if they are religious, most say no. That's because, to them, religious means devout and dedicated, and for them, the two major religions, Shinto (native) and Buddhism (imported) have shifted their focus to accommodate each other. They believe, at least nominally, that their ancestors' spirits persist, and environmental spirits exist, etc... and that simple rituals bring them closer to their environment. But unlike western religions, they don't see one religion as usually being exclusive of another. Shinto and Buddhism have different focuses and don't really compete in Japan. Christianity does have history in Japan, but even Japanese Christians respect the roles that Shinto and Buddhism have come to play, because they are, at this point, more important culturally than religiously. The Japanese have the same attitude about their own two core religions that the Deists among our founding fathers probably had. "Of course God exists. And it doesn't really matter." Outside religions feel to the Japanese like cults, cults with lots of iconography and large bureaucracies.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:50 pm
by prfsnl_gmr
Sarge wrote:(The games are still good, but man. I wish some guys would take some theology classes or something.)


You mean playing through El Shaddai on your Xbox 360 isn't the same thing as a course of study on the New Testament and the origins of Christianity as an organized religion? :lol:

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:51 pm
by isiolia
1. DKC Returns (3DS)
2. √ Letter (PS4)
3. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided (PC)
4. Spec Ops: The Line (PC)
5. Fire Emblem Heroes (Android) (such as it is)
6. Gears of War UItimate Edition (Xbox One)

Fire Emblem Heroes

There's certainly plenty more to potentially do, or that will get added to this game. However, I did play through the story missions, and it remains to be seen how long the rest holds my interest. I've still been going back and playing it a bit.

I think this is a bit of a mixed bag. On the one hand, it seems to be a quality production that's adapted to play fairly well on a small screen. Portrait art has varying style, but it's all nicely done and appealing. The reduced scale works pretty well for short play sessions, and touch controls integrate well. As a proof-of-concept that the series could make a compelling mobile game, Fire Emblem Heroes makes a serious case.

On the other hand though, it's still most definitely a F2P gacha game. So, your own actual ability to strategize and play the game ultimately comes in second to your ability to luck (or grind) out top tier characters. Personally, I have yet to get a single five-star character, though I've got a few four-stars. Between launch bonuses and first-completion mission bonuses, there's some chance of that. It drops off significantly after those. While there are daily missions to unlock characters, they seem to only net one or two star versions. Lower ratings seem to correlate to both lower stats, and reduced ability to learn skills. Upgrading them seems to be a fairly arduous process.

Much as I think there's a good balance to luck or grinding for upgrades in games, I just don't find it that appealing here (or in the general style of mobile game).

The "stamina" restrictions for attempting battles is mixed - it's pretty acceptable for casual play, but is quickly exhausted if/when you actually have time to sit down and play for a bit. Doing that also murders my phone's battery, but that's probably not the fault of the game. :lol:
The "story", such as it is so far, is pretty much an excuse to toss a bunch of Fire Emblem characters together, and not much more. Similar to what I've seen with others, to be fair.

Anyway, fun enough to play, but I'm not sure about any lasting appeal to me. I'd much rather it be a one-time purchase type deal that could actually have consistent progression.


Gears of War Ultimate Edition

I blame Noise for this one. :lol:

This was the game I wound up tossing into my Xbox One to try out game streaming, when Noise was having issues setting it up (until he reset his router). It was a pack-in for the system, and one of only a handful of games I actually own for it.
More or less, it's the HD remaster of Gears of War, which I've never really stuck with. I've played an hour or so of it a couple times before, but usually by that point the apathy is palpable and I wind up not going back to it. I almost did that this time too, but figured I might give it more of a try. I did that with the Halo series a couple years or so ago and wound up enjoying them more than I anticipated.

The first maybe half of the game largely felt like a slog, but that was my own fault, as I'd somehow missed (or forgotten) proper reloading instruction...much less active reloading. Basically, timing a press or second press of the reload button properly to both reload a lot faster, and get a damage bonus. So, with more proactive reloading, and a way to do it better, things got more fun. Still largely never got a handle on meleeing though, certainly not to the extent that it's useful in Halo.

Gears definitely has a consistent aesthetic. Everything has a real weight to it. While I didn't particularly love the chunky meatiness of it all, it's clear that it was intentional, and well executed. I like it more in concept art form, I think, though occasionally there's a view that lives up to it. Still, that's more how I see the Halo games too - it's just pulp sci-fi to play through, and not much more.
I suspect that co-op is a better way to play it, given the number of times the team splits up. Or could potentially revive one another.

Anyway, I imagine most have played this to some degree. I wound up liking it well enough, and may get around to playing some of the others if I get in the mood. Not really in a rush though. As well crafted as it seems to be, it's just not as appealing to me as other big franchise games.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:57 pm
by noiseredux
isiolia wrote:Gears of War Ultimate Edition


ha! Sorry. :lol:

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 1:37 pm
by Sarge
Hey, isiolia, did I see you mention you've got a Moto X Pure? I've got the same, which would explain the terrible battery life...

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 2:07 pm
by ElkinFencer10
Sarge wrote:As a specifically Christian religious person, I can't even count the number of ways that SMT and its ilk gets things wrong.

Yeah, it's filtered through Japan, it's a video game, and it blends religions from all over the world. Also keep in mind that a lot of what it draws from is ANCIENT Christian mythology, and Christianity has changed a lot over the millenia. One of things for which I frequently praise SMT is using those ancient and discarded traditions. Take Lucifer and Satan, for example. Today, mainstream Christianity has blended Lucifer and Satan into one entity, and Beelzebub is often used as another name for that entity as well. However, in ancient Judeo-Christian beliefs, they are three separate entities - Satan is the ruler of Hell and punisher of the damned, Lucifer was the angel who rebelled against God and was cast down into Hell, and Beelzebub was a high ranking demon in Hell and lord of pestilence.

Religions - all religions - change a lot over time, so while games like Shin Megami Tensei obviously take a LOT of creative liberties for the sake of the game for their own narrative, they do a relatively good job (compared to other entertainment sources, at any rate) of referencing the ancient Abrahamic traditions discarded by most followers in the 21st Century.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 2:10 pm
by Stark
prfsnl_gmr wrote:
Sarge wrote:(The games are still good, but man. I wish some guys would take some theology classes or something.)


You mean playing through El Shaddai on your Xbox 360 isn't the same thing as a course of study on the New Testament and the origins of Christianity as an organized religion? :lol:

Or Dante's Inferno!

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 2:11 pm
by ElkinFencer10
Stark wrote:
prfsnl_gmr wrote:
Sarge wrote:(The games are still good, but man. I wish some guys would take some theology classes or something.)


You mean playing through El Shaddai on your Xbox 360 isn't the same thing as a course of study on the New Testament and the origins of Christianity as an organized religion? :lol:

Or Dante's Inferno!

Well, I played Bible Adventures on NES, so I know EXACTLY how the whole Noah's ark thing went down.