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Ack
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Ack Mon May 07, 2018 11:00 am

1. Jungle Book (SNES)(Platformer)
2. Metal Combat: Falcon's Revenge (SNES)(Light Gun Shooter)
3. Might and Magic VI (PC)(RPG)
4. Revenant (PC)(RPG)
5. Neo Turf Masters (NGPC)(Sports)
6. Fatal Fury: First Contact (NGPC)(Fighter)
7. Pac-Man (NGPC)(Action)

8. Golden Axe (Genesis)(Hack and Slash)
9. Blood and Bacon (PC)(FPS)
10. Gain Ground (Genesis)(Strategy)

11. Flicky (Genesis)(Platformer)
12. Zombie Shooter 2 (PC)(Top-Down Shooter)
13. Phantasmagoria (PC)(Point and Click)
14. SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighter's Clash - Capcom Version (NGPC)(Card Game)
15. Toonstruck (PC)(Point and Click)
16. Riven (PC)(Point and Click)
17. Dragon Wars (PC)(RPG)

Dragon Wars was meant to be Bard's Tale 4, but due to changes in licensing, it became its own game. It follows a party of adventures who travel to an archipelago of rumored beauty only to discover an evil wizard who climbed up from beyond the underworld has now taken over and is steadily subjugating the islands so he can then go on and rule the world. Since you're new and might be able to cast magic, Namtar decides you're a threat from the get go and throws you in the prison city of Purgatory. From there, you have one goal: revenge. How you go about it is up to you.

Yes, Dragon Wars is a game of choices. You have options when you level up in how to raise your stats. You have options in how you want to wrap up certain puzzles or events. You have options in participating in side quests and how you resolve those quests. For instance, you meet a hunter in the king's forest. Do you show him proof of your connection to the king or do you just go ahead and fight in hopes of getting his magic bow? Choices drive the game and give you a story to talk about later with friends.

Of course, Dragon Wars came out around 1990, so it is old school in its design. Enemies come in groups, and they can be stacked in different sets, so you may encounter groupings like A) 10 guards at 10' and B) 5 pikemen at 50'. You get no choice in which of the 10 guards you will attack, you just choose to attack the group and hope that you can peel down their numbers before the pikemen arrive. Alternatively, you can block, which keeps you safe for an attack but also relies a bit on lucky: I found it often advantageous against 2 enemies to block with my front line fighters and have my back row use spells or archery to drop enemies without taking damage, but against 5 enemies at once, such a plan didn't work as well because I wasn't sure who might get attacked: all 5 could suddenly choose to go for one character, in which case attacking with everyone in melee might have ripped through the enemy's ranks much faster and prevented the loss of life.

Dragon Wars also shows its age in its colors (you have a few options at the start, but you're pretty much going to be using 16 colors or less) and music (or lack thereof). There really isn't any music in Dragon Wars, but there are sound effects, and these can actually cause the game to lag a bit, so I find it is best to turn them off for the sake of speed. As for the story, much of the game will ask the player to read paragraphs found in the manual. Different paragraphs tell different parts of the story, and they are not presented in order, with some false paragraphs thrown in for good measure, so it's not worth it to read them all ahead of time. Instead, take the number you find and read it when directed; this allows the game to do a lot more literary world building that really helps give it life far better than the limited color palette and lack of music can convey.

Dragon Wars is also gear dependent, particularly because your weapon affects how much damage you can actually do: 1d4 or 1d100 in a few cases. Weapons have classes which affect your ability to hit too, based on your skills. A word of advise: spread out the types of weapons your characters can use so folks can have different weapons (or swords and get Dragon Tooth swords for the whole party so you can hit 60' out), and don't use axes. Axes suck. I couldn't come up with a way to boost damage or AC outside of gear, no matter my stats.

Finally, while Dragon Wars can be tough, it does have some elements of forgiveness. Party members are much more likely to be stunned, which knocks them out of combat but revives them as soon as the fight is over. This is great, because there is only one way to resurrect a dead party member in Dragon Wars, and it is a pain in the butt to pull off. Don't let your characters die! Boost that Bandage skill and heal after every fight where someone took damage. It's a long process to do it, but eventually you'll get the key commands down like clockwork.

I like Dragon Wars. I like its range of options, its reliance on outside literary materials, and its attempt to create an interesting world. It's archaic and old in a lot of ways, but it also highlights the core ideal of WRPGs from early on: to create a world where you could do almost whatever you wanted. DW does this with a lot of success for a game from 1990, long before we thought we were getting such a thing in titles like Deus Ex. I recommend it highly.
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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by prfsnl_gmr Mon May 07, 2018 7:38 pm

1. Bastion (iOS)
2. LaserCat (360)
3. Zombie Incident (3DS)
4. Bye-Bye BoxBoy! (3DS)
5. Monument Valley 2 (iOS)
6. Zenge (iOS)
7. Master of Darkness (Game Gear/3DS)
8. Wonder Boy (SMS)
9. Full Throttle Remastered (iOS)
10. Adventure Island (NES)
11. Adventure Island II (NES)
12. Adventure Island (GB)
13. Super Adventure Island (SNES)
14. New Adventure Island (TG16)
15. Adventure Island III (NES)
16. The Legend of the Ghost Lion (NES)
17. Part Time UFO (iOS)
18. Adventure Island II: Aliens in Paradise (GB)
19. Adventure Island IV (NES)
20. Super Adventure Island II (SNES)
21. Adventure Island: The Beginning (WII)
22. Quell Memento (3DS)
23. Wonder Boy in Monster Land (ARCADE)
24. Saiyuuki World (FAMICOM)
25. Whomp ‘Em (NES)
26. Bikkuriman World (TG16)
27. Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair (TG16)
28. Go Series: Picdun (DS)

I got so excited his month’s TR that I went back and finished a FPDC I started last year, threw down in disgust, and swore I would never play again. My compulsive desire to finish every game I start got the best of me, however, and I pushed through the back half of the soul-destroying Picdun!

Don’t be fooled by its appearance. Picdun is a legit, grid-based FPDC with great sprite work, slick (and fun!) real-time combat, and an interesting conceit: all of its auto-mapped levels make a rudimentary picture (...think Picross). Accordingly, in addition to fighting monsters, leveling up, solving puzzles, and finding more gear, you must also step on every square on the map (ultimately) to proceed. This conceit can be both enlightening - such as when the “picture” hints at the location of an exit or piece of gear - or maddening - such as when you spend hour searching for the last few spaces you need to complete the map. The game’s extensive puzzles also vary between appropriately challenging and so-cryptic-and-poorly-translated-that-you-can-only-solve-them-by-random-chance. The result is a game that is wildly uneven, and you will find yourself breezing through some maps in a few minutes and stuck on others for hours. (It is also clear that some levels were intentionally designed to be as frustrating and irritating as possible.) It ends up being a unique, if often frustrating, experience with some good ideas, and it ends strong. So, I while it is tough to recommend, I don’t hate it entirely. I am, however, looking forward to moving on to another, more traditional FPDC.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by ElkinFencer10 Tue May 08, 2018 7:43 am

Games Beaten in 2018 So Far - 52
* 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 (10 Games Beaten)
35. Phantasy Star - Master System - March 10*
36. Grand Kingdom - PlayStation 4 - March 17
37. Bit.Trip Beat - Wii - March 18
38. Bit.Trip Core - Wii - March 18
39. Bit.Trip Void - Wii - March 18
40. Bit.Trip Runner - Wii - March 22
41. Bit.Trip Fate - Wii - March 22
42. Bit.Trip Flux - Wii - March 24
43. Bit.Trip Runner 2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien - Wii U - March 25
44. My Nintendo Picross: Legend of Zelda - Twilight Princess - 3DS - March 28


April (7 Games Beaten)
45. Gundam Breaker 3 - PlayStation 4 - April 4
46. Night Trap - PlayStation 4 - April 5
47. Corpse Killer - Sega CD 32X - April 9
48. Corpse Killer - Saturn - April 11*
49. Area 51 - Saturn - April 16*
50. Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers - Sega CD - April 17
51. SD Gundam G Generation Genesis - PlayStation 4 - April 28*


May (1 Game Beaten)
52. Detention - PlayStation 4 - May


52. Detention - PlayStation 4 - May

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I saw Detention on sale for like $1 or so on a recent PSN flash sale, so I decided I'd give it a shot. For that little, I figured it was worth the risk especially given my love for horror games. Rather than being developed by a Japanese or American development studio like most games I play, Detention was developed by a team from Taiwan (or, as it's officially called, the Republic of China. There's your history-teacher trivia for the day).

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Detention is set in the 1960s, a little over a decade after Mao Zedong's communist forces overthrew China's ruling Kumintang Party and established the People's Republic of China and exiled the deposed nationalist government to the island of Taiwan. Having recently lost a civil war and facing constant threats of a communist invasion, the island of Taiwan is under martial law and executing what is tantamount to a witch hunt against communist sympathizers. You play as a high school student trapped in a mysteriously deserted school during a typhoon. While this in itself is unsettling enough for a high school student, things get creepier when unexplained and seemingly impossible things begin happening as you try to contact the outside world.

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The story, while a bit confusing at times since I'm not as well versed in Taoist mythology as I perhaps should be, is really fantastic, and when coupled with the legitimately creepy atmosphere makes for a fantastic horror experience. With that said, I won't say much about the story so as not to spoil anything, but it's a fantastic little mystery with some puzzles to solve that are quite clever but not particularly challenging for the most part.

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Detention is a truly fantastic example of indie game design. The mood is eerie, and the journey through the game is filled with mystery as the truth of your situation slowly unravels. The visuals have a very simplistic style, but it gets the job done and fits the mood of the game. Even at full price, it's not terribly expensive and absolutely worth the asking price, but if you see it on sale on Steam, PS4, or Switch, go ahead and let it be an impulse buy. It's a truly fantastic experience.
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Segata
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Segata Tue May 08, 2018 2:47 pm

Magician Lord. That's one tough game. I tooka hiatus for a couple weeks because one part frustrated me but I came back and wasn't bad. Beat the game. No doubt one of my favorite OSTs to a Neo Geo sidescroller.
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marurun
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by marurun Tue May 08, 2018 2:57 pm

The Neo Geo is replete with great soundtracks, and oddly enough, very few of those fantastic soundtracks make full use of the Yamaha sound chip in the system. Most in-house development from SNK only used a subset of the chip's capabilities.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by BoneSnapDeez Tue May 08, 2018 2:58 pm

Segata wrote:Magician Lord. That's one tough game. I tooka hiatus for a couple weeks because one part frustrated me but I came back and wasn't bad. Beat the game. No doubt one of my favorite OSTs to a Neo Geo sidescroller.


I know which part you're referring to. It's a shame, cuz it drags down the game quite a bit, and the rest of it is quite good.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Sarge Tue May 08, 2018 4:11 pm

Yeah, there's a section in which, if you lose all your power-ups, it gets really, really tough to get through without dying over and over. I managed to get through, but it wasn't easy! While they're not related, I ran into the same issue with Osman as well. Basically, don't die at that spot. :lol:
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Segata
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Segata Tue May 08, 2018 6:55 pm

It was one of the last stages where it has moving platforms and these meatballs attack you and constantly respawn. So you get hit easy and fall off the platforms.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Sarge Tue May 08, 2018 7:13 pm

Segata wrote:It was one of the last stages where it has moving platforms and these meatballs attack you and constantly respawn. So you get hit easy and fall off the platforms.

Good grief, that segment sucks. Yep. I feel for ya there.
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Segata
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Segata Tue May 08, 2018 8:41 pm

lol yeah but I do feel almost every game even the good ones have a bullshit section. It just seems every game has one. Dragon Age it was the Fade. Nier Autmata it
s 9s section. WW The Triforce pieces etc etc.
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