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Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:28 pm
by BoneSnapDeez
1. Chrono Trigger (SNES)
2. Gyromite (NES)
3. Lucy -The Eternity She Wished For- (Steam)
4. Ys III: Wanderers from Ys (Famicom)
5. Radical Dreamers (SNES)
6. Video Games 1 (TI-99/4A)
7. Portopia Renzoku Satsujin Jiken (Famicom)
8. Exile (TurboGrafx CD)
9. Exile: Wicked Phenomenon (TurboGrafx CD)
10. Xak (PC Engine CD, Xak I・II)
11. Xak II (PC Engine CD, Xak I・II)
12. Neutopia (TurboGrafx-16)
13. Captain Silver (Sega Master System)
14. Märchen Veil (Famicom Disk System)
15. Vanguard (Atari 2600)
16. Kangaroo (Atari 2600)
17. Front Line (Atari 2600)
18. Mario Bros. (Atari 2600)
19. Harmonia (Steam)
20. Donkey Kong (Atari 2600)
21. Jungle Hunt (Atari 2600)
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Jungle Hunt was a 1982 Taito arcade game that was later ported to a decent number of systems. The 2600 port was published by Atari themselves and sports the classic silver label. If you wanna play the arcade original check out Taito Legends. Thematically, this belongs to the "explorer" genre that seemed to be so popular in the early 80s (see Pitfall!, Montezuma's Revenge, and so on). Hardcore Gaming 101 calls these "Indiana Clones." The hero of this story must work his way through through a jungle to save his beloved from some "natives." Yikes.
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The game's a "side-scroller" but not quite a "platformer" primarily because there are, well, no platforms. There are four levels, though here on the 2600 levels three and four seamlessly flow into each other. Each boasts a different type of gameplay. Level one involves swinging on vines and requires a series of precise button presses. Level two is an underwater stage with deadly crocodiles. The surface of the water must be returned to periodically, lest an oxygen meter be depleted to zero. This is the only stage in the game with an offensive weapon. You can use a knife against the crocs but the hit detection is so shaky I'd recommend avoiding them, unless you care deeply about points. Level three features an avalanche of rocks, some of which must be jumped over while others need to be ducked under. And finally, the game's conclusion is a corny sequence where our hero must successfully leap over the natives to rescue his lady.
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All in all, this is pretty fun. It's rare to see a game this old with so much variety amongst the various levels. It controls well, and makes a great companion to the original arcade game. I'd recommend the ColecoVision port as well, which can also be found on the ColecoVision Flashback (which is now on Steam!). I've never had much luck with the Atari 5200 port (dem controls) and the computer variations are naturally rather obscure.

No more Atari for the time being. I'm balls-deep into a PCE RPG.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 7:56 pm
by ElkinFencer10
I've only played Jungle Hunt on the 5200, and it was pretty good, but I can only imagine how much better it would play with a controller that doesn't suck giant dicks.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 8:43 pm
by ElkinFencer10
Games Beaten in 2017 So Far - 19

January (10 Games Beaten)
1. Persona 4 Arena - Playstation 3 - January 1
2. Chrono Trigger - SNES - January 7
3. Ys: The Vanished Omens - Master System - January 8
4. MUSHA - Genesis - January 10
5. Dragon Quest Heroes: The World Tree's Woe and the Blight Below - PlayStation 4 - January 11
6. Ys I - TurboGrafx-CD - January 13
7. Ys II - TurboGrafx-CD - January 14
8. Dragon Quest Builders - PlayStation 4 - January 23
9. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard - PlayStation 4 - January 26
10. School Girl/Zombie Hunter - PlayStation 4 - January 29


February (9 Game Beaten)
11. Fire Emblem Heroes - Android - February 3
12. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD - Wii U - February 5
13. Dante's Inferno - PlayStation 3 - February 7
14. Hotel Dusk: Room 215 - DS - February 11
15. Persona 4: Dancing All Night - Vita - February 12
16. Sniper Elite 4 - PlayStation 4 - February 17
17. Pony Quest - NES - February 19
18. Halo Wars 2 - Xbox One - February 22
19. Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions - PlayStation Portable - February 24


19. Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions - PlayStation Portable - February 24

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inal Fantasy Tactics is one of those mythic games that I hear all about how amazing it is and how I need to play, but because it's so beloved, it's hard to find in the wild, and it's never been high enough on my priority list to go out of my way to order it online. Well, I was in Lost Ark in Greensboro a few months ago, and I saw a copy of the PSP port CIB for like $10. I had just gotten a PSP, so I was like "Why not?" Then, as I do with most games, I proceeded to leave it on my shelf completely ignored until a few weeks ago when I finally decided to see what all the fuss was about. Having now finished the game, I still have no idea what all the fuss is about.

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I know that my opinion on the game is going to be pretty unpopular, so let me stop here and say that I tend to be pretty picky about SRPGs. To make an impression on me, a strategy RPG must do at least one of two things - give me a sense of an epic battle or make me connect with and care about the characters. Fire Emblem - the gold standard for SRPGs as far as I'm concerned - ALWAYS does the latter, and it usually does the former, as well. Valkyria Chronicles hit both masterfully. The newer XCOM games don't really have character to fall in love with for the most part, but it definitely makes the battles feel epic af. Final Fantasy Tactics? It didn't really do either for me, and that made the game a chore for me. It's a game with a lot of love from its fans, however, so I wanted to do right by it and see it through to end before making a final judgement of my own.

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I don't think Final Fantasy Tactics is a bad SRPG. On the contrary, a lot of the game impressed me quite a bit. The game mechanics, in particular, are extraordinarily deep if you're the type who enjoys diving into such things. Unfortunately I'm neutral on how deep game mechanics go as long as I have fun playing it, so that wasn't really a plus for me, and the learning curve is about as steep as food prices at a football game in the North. Again, some folks like sadistic gameplay. That's what's made From Software boatloads of money. I'm not one of those folks. I like challenge with some genres (like SRPGs), but there are a couple of difficulty spikes in this game that were just...painful. Overall the game was manageable if you knew what you were doing, but those few story missions along with a few random encounters seemed rather unbalanced to me.

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My biggest complaint with the game, however, are much more subjective. Simply put, the story bored me, and the character designs were unappealing to me. The story felt very cliché, and I know that's an unusual complaint to make about Final Fantasy since that series practically established most of our RPG clichés, but at no point did I feel at all invested in the game's story. The characters didn't interest me, the story didn't interest me, the attempts at tragedy didn't interest me. The entire narrative just felt very two dimensional and hollow. The character designs are a much bigger nit pick. While I applaud the very artistic hand-drawn looking style, there are two things that really bother me - no one has a nose, and even the cut scenes, their hair looks like overly greased plastic. Especially the nose, man. It's like if you tried to make a Shakespearean fantasy movie and cast Voldemort for every single role, just giving him a different wig - made out of plastic - to wear for each character. Yes, I'm making a mountain out of a mole hill; yes, the character designs really did bother me that much.

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Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions really isn't a bad game. It's not. I certainly don't think it deserves the adoration it's gotten over the years, and I suspect that nostalgia leads a lot of gamers to remember it as being better than it really is (which is true for all of us with one game or another), but it's a competent albeit generic and rather monotonous SRPG. The difficulty could use some scaling (or setting options) to make it more approachable, and the characters are about as flat as Blanc's chest from Hyperdimension Neptunia, but if you're a hardcore Final Fantasy lover, then it's not a bad game. Just don't expect Fire Emblem levels of quality, storytelling, or character development.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:40 pm
by Exhuminator
ElkinFencer10 wrote:I suspect that nostalgia leads a lot of gamers to remember it as being better than it really is

I value your opinion and don't contest it, but to offer my own perspective...

I too had heard how wonderful FFT is for years upon years. But it was not until 2014 before I finally played through it myself (via the original PS1 version patched with the PSP's translation). However, unlike yourself, I found FFT to live up to its hype. I absolutely loved it, 9/10 loved it. I can understand your criticism of the game's characters and plot, as it's all rather dry. But the gameplay is still golden in my book.

Regardless of our difference of opinion, congratulations on finishing another classic.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:51 pm
by Xeogred
I played it back in the day before the PS2 launched. Didn't like it much then. The hype was everywhere even then, "The BEST FF ever", so I replayed it a second time years later to confirm my suspicions, and still didn't leave much of an impression on me. Then I played Tactics Ogre Let Us Cling Together a few years ago and I now have reason to never replay any FFT ever again. I already liked Arc the Lad 1-2 more than FFT anyways and I personally just didn't see how FFT stacked up compared to the rest of the FF franchise for me.

I dislike SRPG's that force you into only using 2-5 units per battle.

I hear the PSP version has a new translation, but I'm not sure how that can fix how bad the pacing is in general for the last third. The final boss is about as Necron as it gets.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 11:07 pm
by Ack
Today I Learned: Elkin really likes noses on his characters.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 12:23 am
by Sarge
January:
1) The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition (PC) (8.5) (1/1) (~5.5 hours)
2) ActRaiser (SNES) (8.0) (1/2) (~4 hours)
3) Bonk's Revenge (GB) (6.0) (1/3) (~1 hour)
4) Tiny Toon Adventures: Babs' Big Break (GB) (6.5) (1/3) (~1 hour)
5) Blackwell Legacy (PC) (7.0) (1/5) (2.6 hours)
6) Blackwell Unbound (PC) (7.5) (1/7) (2.2 hours)
7) Blackwell Convergence (PC) (8.0) (1/7) (2.4 hours)
8) Blackwell Deception (PC) (8.0) (1/8) (4.7 hours)
9) Blackwell Epiphany (PC) (9.0) (1/9) (6.5 hours)
10) Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain (PS4) (8.0) (1/22) (~55 hours)
11) Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 (360) (8.0) (1/28) (~.5 hours)
12) Deep Duck Trouble Starring Donald Duck (SMS) (6.5) (1/31) (~1 hour)


February:
13) Quackshot Starring Donald Duck (GEN) (7.5) (2/7) (~2 hours)
14) Fire Emblem Heroes (Android) (8.0) (2/9) (~10 hours)
15) Super C (NES) (9.5) (2/20) (~0.5 hours)
16) Contra (NES) (10.0) (2/20) (~0.5 hours)
17) Mickey's Dangerous Chase (GB) (6.5) (2/24) (~1 hour)

So this is one of the games I found in a retro game store today. It's basically a Rescue Rangers-style platformer. It seems pretty simple to start, but it really gets quite tough starting in Stage 4. Stage 5 also has some brutal segments, and the last boss can be really rough if you don't have much life. I don't think it was the emulator, but at times the controls felt pretty laggy, I'm assuming when there were too many boxes on-screen among other things. This made some jumps really tough.

Speaking of jumps, you know those sort of wraparound jumps that you sometimes need to do in Super Mario Bros.? Jumping out and then pulling back in to get on a block directly overhead? Yeah, that's quite literally a significant part of the level design here, except the physics for those jumps require you to be nearly frame-perfect. It's really, really tough.

Also, there are auto-scrolling chase levels where you pilot some vehicle, like a boat, car, balloon, or ride birds down a cliff. Those can be really challenging as well.

Anyway, I was doing great until I hit 4-2, got to that chase segment, and beat my head against it until I just decided to save state. Funnily enough, when I did that, I cleared it. :lol:

If you want a decent GB platformer, it's worth a shot, just don't expect a cakewalk!

EDIT: And I'm apparently not crazy, the speedrunners at AGDQ mention the same things about the difficulty.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2w1dxDhAW0Y

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 2:03 am
by REPO Man
The Simpsons Arcade (360) - USA rom, lowest difficulty as Marge.

Power Rangers: Beats of Power - Special Edition (PC), an OpenBOR mod based on Power Rangers, specifically Season 2 (Tommy is the White Ranger, though if you scroll past either side of the character select screen, you can choose Tommy as the Green Ranger). The latest version, dubbed the Special Edition, adds 4-player multiplayer and a few new things. It's on GameJolt. I only beat it on Easy, so I didn't get the real ending.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 2:08 am
by REPO Man
Oh, and Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon for 360! Still gotta get 2 achievements. One is the one for killing 25 dragons (easy since I've got the Killstar) and the last one is the one for killing each kind of enemy with a headshot.

Re: Games Beaten 2017

Posted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 2:42 am
by MrPopo
1. Pokémon Moon - 3DS
2. Tony Hawk's Underground - GCN
3. Warhammer 40,000 Dawn of War II: Chaos Rising - PC
4. Warhammer 40,000 Dawn of War II: Retribution - PC
5. Disgaea: Afternoon of Darkness - PSP
6. X-Wing: Imperial Pursuit - PC
7. Star Wars Republic Commando - PC
8. X-Wing: B-Wing - PC
9. Blazing Lazers - TG-16
10. Tales of Xillia 2 - PS3
11. Shining Force CD: Shining Force Gaiden - Sega CD
12. MUSHA - Genesis
13. Sonic CD - Sega CD
14. Final Fantasy Legend III - GB
15. Tales of Zestiria - PS3

Ugh, I hate hate hate hate hate the combat in this game. Fortunately the characters and story were enough to keep me going. It's really a shame because I really enjoyed the combat in Xillia 2, so this felt like a massive step back.

So Zestiria has the same sort of system as Graces, so you again have a system of every attack being an arte, with a distinction between weapon attacks, weapon specials, and spells. Unlike Graces this game actually lets you do full combos from the get-go, but it balances that by forcing more pauses for your attack resource to recharge; it's more of a gradual pause rather than the fast pause of Graces. Just like Graces your attacks are far too busy, leading to general clusterfucks in normal battles. The idea was to force more tactical choices by having every attack variation capable of striking a different weakness, but mostly it's just memorizing the elemental ones and looking up the monster family ones if necessary to initiate a weakness chain.

The new thing in the game is a system called armitization. This relies on the story fact that in battle two of your characters are human and two are seraphs, which are magical humanoids who are invisible to normal people and after the story event that makes you the chosen hero gain the ability to fuse with you. This fusion combines all the stats of the individual characters and gives you a hugeass weapon to wreck havoc with. Now, this is cool, but it ends up taking over the combat in a big way, especially once you realize just how easy it can be to chain interrupt bosses with the armitized spells. Suddenly all that combat relying on baiting out attacks and dodging goes out the window and instead you just mash spells all the time. Because the fusion is a raw sum of stats combat ends up being balanced around that, which means you are hilariously fragile when not fused and all your major damage is in fusion form. Combined with how easy it is to get the fusion resource and you no longer have a reason to fight boss fights in the traditional way.

I personally found the equipment system to be utterly tedious once I got past the first third of the game. The idea is that all your gear can have one or more skills on it that are minor stat buffs. Stacking particular skills or skills that are collocated on a grid will give you bonus skills; the most valuable one early gives you +20 to all stats (which is quite a lot for quite a while). There's a system of combining gear with the same name to add/update skills and enhance the base stats. It's clear that when you're doing bonus dungeons or super difficulties you want to take advantage of these skill stacks as much as possible. But in the game proper it's completely unnecessary once the +20 no longer is a large number. Instead you're best off just using gear that has good inherent stats. One interesting thing is all gear has a primary stat it buffs and maybe a secondary stat. These stats are the only benefits (outside skills) that gear gives you. So you can have a sword that gives arte defense or a chest piece that gives physical attack. In fact, you have the option of heavily weighting things towards one stat as a result. Again, a potential interesting idea that's marred by things like random shop inventory and many pieces only coming from drops/chests.

The story and characters were at least enjoyable. The game asks questions about the nature of your standard hero protagonist. How much should he engage in helping others? Sure, it's nice to help someone out, but does that breed dependence or resentment from those you don't help? And it tackles that age old JRPG trope of trying to redeem bad guys. This game requires you to out right kill several major enemies that in another game you'd leave alive now that they're no longer a threat after the boss fight; your protagonist has to come to terms with the fact that sometimes the only way to save someone is to put them out of their cursed existence. It's given gravity but doesn't fall into angst; it's part of the hero growing from a naïve idealist to a tempered hero who still retains that core of idealism.