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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by MrPopo Sat Mar 24, 2018 9:31 pm

1. Ultima V - PC
2. Ultima VI - PC
3. Might and Magic VI - PC
4. Realms of Arkania: Blade of Destiny - PC
5. Pool of Radiance - PC
6. Curse of the Azure Bonds - PC
7. Secret of the Silver Blades - PC
8. Pools of Darkness - PC
9. Gateway to the Savage Frontier - PC
10. Treasures of the Savage Frontier - PC
11. Champions of Krynn - PC
12. Death Knights of Krynn - PC
13. Dark Queen of Krynn - PC
14. Into the Breach - PC
15. Lords of the Realm - PC
16. Dark Sun: Shattered Lands - PC

After my foray through the Gold Box games I decided to move on to the next in the old D&D PC games. Since I'm not equipped for Eye of the Beholder yet (I lack a numpad on my Surface) I skipped over to the first Dark Sun game. And I gotta tell ya, this game is incredibly flawed. There's a core there that makes it worth playing, but it's clear that SSI was not ready to create a new engine; the game really needed another year of incubation before it was released.

The game is set in the second best AD&D campaign setting (unfortunately, the game set in the best campaign setting is still in rights limbo). Dark Sun is basically Mad Max AD&D style; magic draws its power from life itself and a bunch of mages went power mad and in the process turned what was once a lush world into a desert. Now everyone is either a slave or someone profiting from slaves, and everyone is dressed incredibly inappropriately for the weather. Also, the world is much more deadly than your average campaign setting; new characters start at level 3 and you roll attributes between 5 and 20 before racial modifiers (which, hey, gets around the exceptional strength bullshit in favor of just getting 19 and above).

The game is from an overhead perspective and the interface takes some cues from Sierra adventure games. By default you click to move around, with everything happening in real time. You can right click to cycle to some interaction icons, which also pauses the game. This also makes it a bit clumsy to talk to people (well, that and the fact that it goes look at person, which opens a menu which you can then click a button to talk to them). You also need to use this look interface in combat to see the name of anyone you're fighting, so again, clumsy. You get a shiny paper doll inventory, complete with support for the Dark Sun system of armor pieces rather than full suits. One thing the game does have which was sorely lacking in the later Infinity Engine games is the ability to see the targets who will be affected by your aoe spells before you launch them; it was less of an issue in Gold Box because you could count the squares, but this game is free move.

The plot is a bit disjointed. You start off as gladiators, escape, find your way to a free city, and then get a mission to unite the tribes. So far, so good. There's a bunch of sidequests with some nice loot at the end and a picture into the world (see how many things you know are wrong). The game is definitely harmed by the general lack of a journal to keep track of some involved quests with lots of steps. Then when you're ready to help the tribes fight off the evil city you suddenly have to go into a newly revealed temple that was buried to get a genie. That genie can be used to make the last battle easier, but it doesn't do anything plot relevant. It's a weird ass pull and it feels like they originally wanted to do more with what you find in that temple before they ran out of time.

The biggest issue with the game, though, is just how janky everything is. Movement feels janky, the camera is super janky (rather than following your character, it moves the camera when your character moves, so if you've scrolled off screen it will stay off screen and move as the character moves), NPC interaction is janky (both talking and escorting), quests are janky, the whole thing is janky. It feels like an alpha that was built up to show "hey, check this out" and you go "that's cool", and then they didn't do the polish phase.

Underneath all of that is a decent game, but man, is there a lot of grime obscuring it. I'd only recommend it if you have a high tolerance for poorly implemented gameplay; the ideas are good, the execution fails.
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Games Beaten: 2015 2016 2017 2018
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BoneSnapDeez
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by BoneSnapDeez Sun Mar 25, 2018 2:25 pm

I like the game but yeah, it brings the jank. Al-Qadim does the real-time thing better, but is still awkward. Kinda wish those games had just been developed for the Genesis or something.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Sarge Sun Mar 25, 2018 4:17 pm

Finally finished Xenoblade Chronicles 2. There's so much content there that you could probably spend a good 200 hours easily and not realize it. I don't have that sort of resolve, so I stopped doing a lot of the side quests and mostly stuck to the story path for the last few chapters. That's what usually happens to me in these games, anyway.

Let me preface this by saying the Switch is a great platform. But there were some obvious technical issues getting this game to work well on the system. Unlike Breath of the Wild, which ran at 900p and mostly maintained frame rate except in a few instances, XC2 keeps the frame rate up through dynamic resolution adjustment. Sometimes, that resolution is pretty decent. Other times, it drops tremendously low, getting awfully close to 3DS levels. They mask some of this by applying some very strong sharpness filters and other filtering, but it can be a distraction at times. Still, overall, the game works fine, and it looks better than the Wii game, at any rate. I'm actually fuzzy on my memories on how it compares with XCX, though.

There are some really cool tunes in there, too. I really like a lot of the music, and the choir/chant music in places like Tantal or Indol is even really cool. Character voices are pretty convincing as well, and I like that they went back to the various UK accents.

Character design turned out... hmm. The game looks far more "kiddie" anime than things did before, with Rex looking rather doofy. Some other characters look cool, though, even if a few of the antagonists look like they dropped straight out of Kingdom Hearts. And the outfits... hmm. Some of the rare blades look super-cool. Some look hilarious or are meant to be cute. And a few... well, they don't leave much to the imagination. Pyra (and later iterations) has some rather sizable assets, and if you pull Dahlia... :shock: There's lots of skin showing everywhere, y'all. :lol:

Still, we're in this for the gameplay, right? Well, if you didn't like X1/XCX, I don't think this will change your mind. Some things have been streamlined, but otherwise the combat still feels a little sloggy at times, with enemies taking a bit too long to fell. Your immediate combat options have been reduced to three face buttons for your skills, but you can also swap Blades out to access three more skills. It all works pretty well. Quests are done a bit differently; most of them don't auto-complete and you have to return to the quest giver. Thankfully, they're labeled on the map much better, so that's not too bad. The other quests you might have taken in earlier games were replaced by Merc Missions, in which you send out your unused Blades on various missions that give you gear, EXP, and gold.

I don't think I quite explained blades, but basically they're partners that give you various abilities. You get them through a gacha mechanic. Why this was necessary, I don't know, especially in a game that isn't selling these things as DLC, but whatever. At least getting them in most cases doesn't require ridiculously convoluted quests; it just requires hoping for good RNG.

For whatever reason, I actually did enjoy the story, even if it was even more anime than the other two. And not to spoil anything, but I very much enjoyed the ending. But speaking of the ending, that last boss pulled the usual JRPG trope of being quite a bit tougher than anything you'd faced up to that point. It necessitated a change in tactics after the fifth time I bit it. That was even more frustrating because it takes a lot of time to work him down... or so I thought.

Once again, avoiding spoilers, there were a few combat mechanics that I'd largely ignored. The most important revolves around your Party Gauge, which fills up as you hit enemies and use arts and whatnot. You get three bars, and you can use one of them to revive a fallen party member. This is what I mostly used it for. You can also use it when completely full to trigger a "Chain Attack", which lets your entire team unleash all at once, with a pretty significant damage multiplier. I tried it a few times, but didn't deem the multiplier enough to risk being defenseless if I used it and then Rex fell in battle. The last battle changed that, though. I was getting wiped out pretty quickly by two attacks in particular. The first I could recover from, but the later pretty much killed my entire team at once. Doh!

In goofing around, though, I finally learned the deal with adding "Orbs" to your enemies. See, you can chain level 1, 2, and 3 specials into a powerful ender combo that adds an "orb" to the enemy you're fighting. Once you've added these orbs, then if you use your Chain Attack, you have an opportunity to break them. If you break them, you get a big boost in your multiplier, and you get to add another round to your onslaught! You can see where this is heading...

...there's also a massively powerful boost for Pyra in the end game that makes her output amazing amounts of damage, especially in chain attacks. It's a one-time-per-battle thing, though. So I worked down the last boss to about half health, adding orbs as I could (it ended up being three), activated the super mode, and triggered my chain attack. I broke all three orbs, and in the course of the chain attack, I basically took that massive pool of health down all in one go. Heck, I had damage to spare! I was just piling on at the end. :lol: So I went from being mad at the game to saying, "Okay, not so bad after all."

Do I recommend this? Well, if you've got lots of free time, then sure! I'd give it a 8.5, probably. When I was in the groove I didn't want to put it down. It's certainly not perfect, but for fans of the previous games, I certainly wouldn't pass it up. I enjoyed it more than XCX; it takes a lot less time to feel like you're getting somewhere. I still think the first game hit more high notes for me, but some of the quality-of-life improvements here would be great in, say, a remastered version of the original.

(Oh, right, final time was 76:24, but there's so much I didn't do.)
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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by MrPopo Sun Mar 25, 2018 5:29 pm

1. Ultima V - PC
2. Ultima VI - PC
3. Might and Magic VI - PC
4. Realms of Arkania: Blade of Destiny - PC
5. Pool of Radiance - PC
6. Curse of the Azure Bonds - PC
7. Secret of the Silver Blades - PC
8. Pools of Darkness - PC
9. Gateway to the Savage Frontier - PC
10. Treasures of the Savage Frontier - PC
11. Champions of Krynn - PC
12. Death Knights of Krynn - PC
13. Dark Queen of Krynn - PC
14. Into the Breach - PC
15. Lords of the Realm - PC
16. Dark Sun: Shattered Lands - PC
17. Lords of the Realm II - PC

While I'm killing time before The Alliance Alive arrives I decided to noodle around with Lords of the Realm II, while the first game was still fresh in my mind. I wasn't expecting things to go this quickly, though. LotR II sets out to simplify the gameplay of the original to make it more approachable, and in the process makes things easier strategically and overall a less interesting game.

Just like before, the king is dead and nobles are feuding with each other. This game has one less noble and the maps are smaller than the original. In addition, there are less connections between counties, causing you to be much more funneled in your movement. It removes some of the diplomacy that used to exist because you'll find yourself with an explicit order of nobles to beat just due to how the map is, whereas before you had more freedom. You still manage your workers, have the option of following a grain cycle or going dairy, and you still recruit your troops from the populace. Sheep have been removed, which is good riddance.

In fairness, the game actually does add some depth in the county management at the same time it removes it. The removal is if you leave advanced farming off; now you have a constant number of serfs all year round on grain, rather than the boom and bust. But the boom and bust ends up being the way to go because dairy was nerfed (you can't go big with just cows) and efficiency was buffed; as long as you keep one peasant on industry you will maintain that 100% efficiency, even if you toss an extra 500 peasants at it the next season. So there's no reason to do anything but grain now, and definitely with advanced farming on. But the depth added is the fact that you don't necessarily have 10 fields; different counties have different numbers. Additionally, the only industries you are guaranteed to have is blacksmithing and the option to build a castle. Iron, stone, and lumber availability differ from county to county, and a given county will have one or two of those available. In my time I saw that I always had forestry available and then had either nothing, stone, or iron available. Blacksmithing was also made more complicated; now different weapons take different amounts of wood and iron to manufacture, and they cost different amounts at the merchants. So now there is actual advantages to having differing compositions of melee troops or ranged troops, rather than just going archers and either swordsmen or knights.

The battles, though, end up being less fun in my opinion. Your army units move fast enough that it feels more RTSy rather than the slower strategic movement from before. On the plus side, regular maps now have real choke points, so you can do some mean stuff with your archers and get some good flank maneuvers going. Sieges now are always fully real time, rather than you sitting for several seasons plinking away with trebuchets til you win. Now you always have to storm the castle to get through, which makes the sieges far more costly. But at the same time, it also means you win or lose a siege in a season or two (it takes one or two seasons to build the battering ram that is the only worthwhile siege engine in this game depending on your army size). On the flip side, forcing this confrontation means defenders have a decent shot at being able to repel an invading force compared to the original.

Honestly, I prefer the first game to this. Too much was shaved off in the name of accessibility, and the interface actually is worse for it. Moving people between industries if you're micro managing is much more painful than the sliders of the first game.
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Games Beaten: 2015 2016 2017 2018
Blizzard Entertainment Software Developer - All comments and views are my own and not representative of the company.
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ElkinFencer10
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by ElkinFencer10 Sun Mar 25, 2018 5:55 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:Are all these games, like, on one disc, dawg?

Yeah, Bit.Trip Complete on Wii is how I've been playing them although they were all originally released individually as WiiWare titles. They're also all part of The Bit.Trip on Vita and PS4.


Games Beaten in 2018 So Far - 43
* denotes a replay

January (16 Games Beaten)
1. Phantasy Star Portable - PlayStation Portable - January 1
2. Middle-Earth: Shadow of War - Xbox One - January 9
3. Duck Tales - NES - January 10
4. Yakuza Kiwami - PlayStation 4 - January 14
5. Xuan-Yuan Sword: The Gate of Firmament - PlayStation 4 - January 20
6. Doki Doki Literature Club - Steam - January 20
7. Deep Space Waifu - Steam - January 21
8. Turok: Dinosaur Hunter - Steam - January 21
9. Duck Tales 2 - NES - January 22
10. TaleSpin - NES - January 22
11. Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers - NES - January 23
12. Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers 2 - NES - January 24
13. Global Defence Force - PlayStation 2 - January 24
14. Darkwing Duck - NES - January 25
15. Tiny Toon Adventures - NES - January 26
16. Poi - Steam - January 28


February (18 Games Beaten)
17. Galaxy on Fire 2 Full HD - Steam - February 3
18. Final Fantasy Legend - Game Boy - February 5
19. Valkyrie Drive Bhikkhuni - Vita - February 5
20. Super Little Acorns 3D Turbo - 3DS - February 8
21. Adventures in Equica: Unicorn Training - Android - February 8
22. Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest - SNES - February 10
23. X-COM: UFO Defense - Steam - February 14
24. Ys IV: The Dawn of Ys -TurboGrafx-CD - February 18
25. Army Men - Game Boy Color - February 19
26. Army Men 2 - Game Boy Color - February 19
27. Army Men: Air Combat - Game Boy Color - February 20
28. Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA 2nd - PlayStation Portable - February 22
29. Army Men: Sarge's Heroes 2 - Game Boy Color - February 22
30. Army Men Advance - Game Boy Advance - February 24
31. Dynasty Warriors Gundam Reborn - PlayStation 3 - February 25
32. Army Men: Operation Green - Game Boy Advance - February 26
33. A Night Out - PC - February 27
34. Army Men: Turf Wars - Game Boy Advance - February 27


March (8 Games Beaten)
36. Phantasy Star - Master System - March 10*
37. Grand Kingdom - PlayStation 4 - March 17
38. Bit.Trip Beat - Wii - March 18
39. Bit.Trip Core - Wii - March 18
40. Bit.Trip Void - Wii - March 18
41. Bit.Trip Runner - Wii - March 22
42. Bit.Trip Fate - Wii - March 22
43. Bit.Trip Flux - Wii - March 24


43. Bit.Trip Flux - Wii - March 24

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Bit.Trip Flux is the last part of the original six game Bit.Trip series, and it turns the series into a bit of psuedo-Pong sandwich. The first game in the series, Beat, played like a rhythm-Pong with the paddle on the left side of the screen; the last game, Flux, plays like a more refined rhythm-Pong with the paddle on the right side of the screen. While it can seem a bit minimalistic when compared to added visual detail of Runner and Fate, it's a fitting end to the WiiWare series.

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Visually, Flux is very similar to Beat. Aurally, Flux is very similar to Beat. Mechanically, Flux is very similar to Beat. The biggest differences between the two other than general refinements are the side of the screen the paddle is on and the way the game is segmented. Whereas Beat was just three extremely long levels with a couple of "checkpoints" that didn't actually serve as checkpoints, Flux is broken up into three similarly long levels, but Flux's levels are broken into eight segments (the last of which is the boss). The biggest improvement in Flux is that the checkpoints between sections actually do serve as checkpoints allowing the player to restart from the last checkpoint rather than the beginning of the level. Granted, your progress through the level is lost if you quit, but it's still a very nice change over Flux.

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Bit.Trip Flux is a fitting end to the Bit.Trip series even if a bit anticlimactic depending on your feelings about Beat. It feels like the developers said "What if we had made Beat knowing everything that we know now after five games?" It's basically Beat but better, but that's not quite doing Flux justice. Flux does add a lot to the Beat's foundation, and the game's conclusion does have a good feeling of finality to the Bit.Trip series (except for the Runner sequels). I was a little disappointed, personally, that Flux was the series conclusion after having so thoroughly enjoying Runner and Fate, but that's not to say that Flux is a bad game. It's still a great time and wholly Bit.Trip; it's just not what I would have done for the end of the series.
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Markies
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Markies Sun Mar 25, 2018 7:16 pm

Markies' Games Beat List Of 2018!
*Denotes Replay For Completion*

1. The Granstream Saga (PS1)
2. Perfect Dark (N64)
*3. Lunar 2: Eternal Blue Complete (PS1)*
4. Prince of Persia: Warrior Within (XBOX)
5. Donkey Kong Country (SNES)
*6. Pikmin (GCN)*
*7. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time (N64)*
8. Shining Force II (GEN)
*9. X-Men Vs. Street Fighter (PS1)*

*10. Mafia (XBOX)*

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I completed Mafia on the Microsoft Xbox this afternoon!

What I love the most about Mafia is the game's aesthetic. It takes place in a 1930s Chicago and everything is completely correct. They have cars that look and handle correct, the characters talk and look period correct and they even have perfect music. It is a nice take on a historical setting with a GTA style. Unfortunately, the freedom of GTA is taken away and it's mostly a linear third person shooter where the shooting controls aren't all that good or even that memorable.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Xeogred Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:16 pm

Sarge wrote:In goofing around, though, I finally learned the deal with adding "Orbs" to your enemies. See, you can chain level 1, 2, and 3 specials into a powerful ender combo that adds an "orb" to the enemy you're fighting. Once you've added these orbs, then if you use your Chain Attack, you have an opportunity to break them. If you break them, you get a big boost in your multiplier, and you get to add another round to your onslaught! You can see where this is heading...

...there's also a massively powerful boost for Pyra in the end game that makes her output amazing amounts of damage, especially in chain attacks. It's a one-time-per-battle thing, though. So I worked down the last boss to about half health, adding orbs as I could (it ended up being three), activated the super mode, and triggered my chain attack. I broke all three orbs, and in the course of the chain attack, I basically took that massive pool of health down all in one go. Heck, I had damage to spare! I was just piling on at the end. :lol: So I went from being mad at the game to saying, "Okay, not so bad after all."

Yeah, I didn't understand it until the final boss basically required me to look into it. Suffice to say, pulling off my first Full Burst combo on the final boss was exhilarating.

Were you expecting to not like the story with your doubt there or something? lol, for me:

XB1 - better story
XB2 - better characters

Maybe the characters made you enjoy it more. The quality of life improvements were amazing when you look back on the original. No more of that crappy left and right scrolling bar, instead that was reduced to single inputs. I still need to play XBX, but I'm not super interested and probably won't beat it.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by prfsnl_gmr Sun Mar 25, 2018 9:24 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:Are all these games, like, on one disc, dawg?


Yes...or one tiny cartridge. They were collected for both the Wii and 3DS.

I am digging your reviews, Elkin. It is my secret shame that I have not played through all of the Bit.Trip games.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Sarge Sun Mar 25, 2018 11:29 pm

Xeogred wrote:Yeah, I didn't understand it until the final boss basically required me to look into it. Suffice to say, pulling off my first Full Burst combo on the final boss was exhilarating.

Were you expecting to not like the story with your doubt there or something? lol, for me:

XB1 - better story
XB2 - better characters

Maybe the characters made you enjoy it more. The quality of life improvements were amazing when you look back on the original. No more of that crappy left and right scrolling bar, instead that was reduced to single inputs. I still need to play XBX, but I'm not super interested and probably won't beat it.


Nah, it's just that a lot of anime stuff turns me off a bit. A lot of the tropes in JRPGs as well. Dumb as dirt characters, and the whole, "Well, I guess we're off to kill God." This totally didn't do that! And the ending was happy! Sometimes that's all I need. The whole game was so earnest about it all (even the goofy characters!) that I couldn't help but enjoy myself. I liked the characters from the first game, but I definitely think the new ones are incredibly memorable. They were a ton better than I was expecting from all the pre-release artwork for the game.

You know, the scrolling left and right didn't bother me, and I think I'd have liked to have seen the triggers used to access a second set of moves (other games have done this), but what they had was fine. It's the inventory management that got me in the first game. Constantly sorting through junk, selling it, equipping it... blah. I think just removing the inventory limit for the first game would have improved things immensely. I think it's still my favorite of the series, but I can't deny that XC2 was far better than I expected, especially with as fast as they got it out.
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ElkinFencer10
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by ElkinFencer10 Mon Mar 26, 2018 8:01 am

prfsnl_gmr wrote:
BoneSnapDeez wrote:Are all these games, like, on one disc, dawg?


Yes...or one tiny cartridge. They were collected for both the Wii and 3DS.

I am digging your reviews, Elkin. It is my secret shame that I have not played through all of the Bit.Trip games.

Thanks buddy! Yeah, I forgot about the 3DS collection. So one disc on Wii and PS4, and one tiny cartridge on 3DS and Vita!


Games Beaten in 2018 So Far - 44
* denotes a replay

January (16 Games Beaten)
1. Phantasy Star Portable - PlayStation Portable - January 1
2. Middle-Earth: Shadow of War - Xbox One - January 9
3. Duck Tales - NES - January 10
4. Yakuza Kiwami - PlayStation 4 - January 14
5. Xuan-Yuan Sword: The Gate of Firmament - PlayStation 4 - January 20
6. Doki Doki Literature Club - Steam - January 20
7. Deep Space Waifu - Steam - January 21
8. Turok: Dinosaur Hunter - Steam - January 21
9. Duck Tales 2 - NES - January 22
10. TaleSpin - NES - January 22
11. Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers - NES - January 23
12. Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers 2 - NES - January 24
13. Global Defence Force - PlayStation 2 - January 24
14. Darkwing Duck - NES - January 25
15. Tiny Toon Adventures - NES - January 26
16. Poi - Steam - January 28


February (18 Games Beaten)
17. Galaxy on Fire 2 Full HD - Steam - February 3
18. Final Fantasy Legend - Game Boy - February 5
19. Valkyrie Drive Bhikkhuni - Vita - February 5
20. Super Little Acorns 3D Turbo - 3DS - February 8
21. Adventures in Equica: Unicorn Training - Android - February 8
22. Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest - SNES - February 10
23. X-COM: UFO Defense - Steam - February 14
24. Ys IV: The Dawn of Ys -TurboGrafx-CD - February 18
25. Army Men - Game Boy Color - February 19
26. Army Men 2 - Game Boy Color - February 19
27. Army Men: Air Combat - Game Boy Color - February 20
28. Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA 2nd - PlayStation Portable - February 22
29. Army Men: Sarge's Heroes 2 - Game Boy Color - February 22
30. Army Men Advance - Game Boy Advance - February 24
31. Dynasty Warriors Gundam Reborn - PlayStation 3 - February 25
32. Army Men: Operation Green - Game Boy Advance - February 26
33. A Night Out - PC - February 27
34. Army Men: Turf Wars - Game Boy Advance - February 27


March (9 Games Beaten)
36. Phantasy Star - Master System - March 10*
37. Grand Kingdom - PlayStation 4 - March 17
38. Bit.Trip Beat - Wii - March 18
39. Bit.Trip Core - Wii - March 18
40. Bit.Trip Void - Wii - March 18
41. Bit.Trip Runner - Wii - March 22
42. Bit.Trip Fate - Wii - March 22
43. Bit.Trip Flux - Wii - March 24
44. Bit.Trip Runner 2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien - Wii U - March 25


44. Bit.Trip Runner 2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien - Wii U - March 25

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Bit.Trip Runner 2 took everything that was great about Runner - which I had already considered to be a nearly perfect game - and made it even better. Literally everything has been improved over Runner. The presentation is leagues better, the levels are more varied in style, there are multiple playable characters, the music is even better, and freaking Charles Martinet narrates the game. They even fixed the one complaint I had about the original - checkpoints. They added checkpoints, and best yet, they're optional for folks wanting a challenge - jumping over the checkpoint skips it but adds 50,000 points to your score.

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Runner 2 takes the foundation set by Runner and stretches it, filling in the gaps with awesome features you never knew you wanted. The game is broken into five worlds each with fourteen regular levels and five bonus levels for a whopping total of 96 levels to run, jump, and slide through. Each of the worlds has a drastically different theme, and while the gameplay remains pretty consistent throughout, the visual style gives each one a VERY different feel. The game's core mechanics remain the same from Runner, though; you have to jump, duck, kick, leap from springs, and raise your shield at the right times to traverse the game's obstacles. The biggest differences in the actual gameplay are the introduction of checkpoints and the overall refinement. Runner 2 feels a lot more responsive and fluid than Runner did, and I didn't even think there was much that really needed improvement in that regard.

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There was always a storyline in the still images and storyboards of the first six Bit.Trip games, but it's made a little easier to follow for those of us with short attention spans in Runner 2 with Charles Martinet's truly fantastic narration. It was weird hearing him sound SO different from the voice we're all most used to from him - Mario - but the knowledge that it was him doing the narration gave it a special feel. I don't really know how to describe it, but there's something special about having Mario's voice actor do the narration for such a purely fun game.

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Bit.Trip Runner 2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien is the perfect game for short bursts of play. It's broken up enough and easy enough to understand that it's got the positive aspects of casual games, but it's got enough challenge and clever level design to hold the attention of core gamers, too. The story if goofy, but the presentation and delivery coupled with Charles Martinet's narration make it an overall product that it's impossible not to love. As good as Bit.Trip Runner and Bit.Trip Fate were, Runner 2 is absolutely the pinnacle of the series. With Runner 3 set to release this year as a Switch console exclusive (also coming to Windows), the bar is set pretty high. Here's to hoping that Runner 3 does what Runner 2 did for Runner - improve things that I didn't think could be improved.
Last edited by ElkinFencer10 on Mon Mar 26, 2018 2:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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