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BoneSnapDeez
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by BoneSnapDeez Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:56 pm

Based post.

Ultima III is probably my favorite of the original trilogy. It's also surprisingly fun on NES (same goes for part IV).
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by Ack Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:08 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:Based post.

Ultima III is probably my favorite of the original trilogy. It's also surprisingly fun on NES (same goes for part IV).


Does Ultima III get the same visual upgrades the way IV does on the NES? Because that version of IV rocks.
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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by prfsnl_gmr Fri Jun 21, 2019 2:33 pm

From what I’ve read, it looks like Ultima III (NES) is the best, definitive version of the game. It looks like it differs from the PC version only in the sense that it has additional content, a more streamlined interface, better graphics, etc. (Badicslly, it’s “Ultima III Remastered”.) Is that basically true?

EDIT: Also, and despite FCI’s credit, it was developed by Origin Systems.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by BoneSnapDeez Fri Jun 21, 2019 4:49 pm

It feels like a more console-ized version of the game. Part IV on NES takes it a step further, it's kind of like a JRPG Ultima. Part IV is also on SMS, and is apparently more like computer originals.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by Ack Fri Jun 21, 2019 7:54 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:It feels like a more console-ized version of the game. Part IV on NES takes it a step further, it's kind of like a JRPG Ultima. Part IV is also on SMS, and is apparently more like computer originals.

The NES port of IV was how I first played Ultima. I actually thought that was how all of the games played until getting my hands on Akalabeth a couple of years later.

While I still prefer Ultima I over II and III, it's hard to emphasize just how much I respect the original trilogy and Richard Garriott. I look forward to whenever I return to his worlds, though I really am feeling like skipping the middle trilogy so I can get to the final games as well as the spin-offs like Worlds of Ultima.
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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by MrPopo Sat Jun 22, 2019 5:14 pm

1. Octopath Traveler - Switch
2. Dusk - PC
3. Forsaken Remastered - PC
4. Tales of Eternia - PS1
5. Resident Evil 2 (2019) - PC
6. Pokémon Trading Card Game - GBC
7. Metro Exodus - PC
8. Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales - PC
9. Project Warlock - PC
10. Magic: The Gathering - PC
11. Ghost 1.0 - PC
12. Call of Duty 2 - PC
13. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice - PS4
14. Revelations: The Demon Slayer - GBC
15. Mechstermination Force - Switch
16. Shadow Warrior Classic Redux - PC
17. Lost Sphear - Switch
18. Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal - PC
19. Dragon Quest III - NES
20. Rage 2 - PC
21. Blood - PC
22. Harvest Moon 64 - N64
23. Battlefield V - PC
24. Sigil - PC
25. Shining Force III: Scenario 2 - Saturn
26. Shining Force III: Scenario 3 - Saturn
27. Borderlands 2: Commander Lillith and the Fight for Sanctuary - PC
28. Gato Roboto - Switch
29. Timespinner - Switch
30. Amid Evil - PC

After playing Dusk earlier this year I put a bunch of retro-inspired FPS games that were upcoming on my Steam wishlist, and this is the first of them to go full release. Amid Evil is Heretic with Hexen's mana system and Painkiller's soul system. The developers managed to pull of being a good retro style FPS that still builds on what came before, rather than being a pale imitation.

The game is built around seven episodes of three levels plus a boss fight each. Each episode starts you off with nothing but the melee weapon, and you have the option to have each level act the same way. This leads to the level design being based around giving you a weapon or two early, even if you're already full up on mana. The first two episodes must be tackled in the same order, but the next four can be done in any order. This is facilitated by a Quake-style level select map (which is also used to pick the difficulty Quake style, where hard requires you to get over deadly pits and the harder than hard is secret). Once you've finished the six episodes of the hub map you unlock the final episode. Since the game strips your weapons from you being able to tackle episodes in any order is actually viable, and each of those episodes has their own particular challenge that isn't based around your arsenal, but rather how you use it or how you traverse. The relative shortness of each episode (even though the levels are sizeable) means you're encouraged to use your big ammo, as well, so you don't suffer from never using that super duper awesome gun until the final boss.

There are seven weapons in the game, and each is fueled by mana. Two weapons share the blue mana, two share the green mana, and then orange and purple fuel your biggest stuff. The two blue mana weapons are your rapid fire, low damage weapons. There is a staff that fires homing shots and a trident that rapid fires lightning that requires you to be more accurate. The green mana weapons are your slower, big punch weapons. There is a sword that fires sword slash beams that can penetrate multiple enemies if you hit them on the edges, and a mace that fires crystal shards that functions as your super shotgun. The orange mana fuels a weapon that fires miniaturized planets that explode on contact; your rocket launcher analog. A fun fact is that you can randomly summon Earth as one of the planets, which causes you to blow up Earth (to the message of Uhhhh… you just blew up the Earth). And finally, the purple mana is your BFG; a single shot that fires out and explodes into a bunch of tendrils that zap all nearby enemies for big damage.

Additionally, every enemy drops a soul, and collecting enough of them allows you to on demand go into soul mode, which powers up all your weapons. This causes them to deal more damage and change their properties some, at the cost of more ammo. Collecting souls while in this state causes it to last longer, and it serves as your main "oh shit" button, as well as your boss melter. Soul power is plentiful enough that you shouldn't hesitate to use it any time there's a bunch of enemies swarming you.

The level design is highly varied, with each episode having a cohesive theme, but each episode is quite distinct from each other. The levels are quite large and feature a lot of rolling back over themselves. But the developers did a great job with having the flow guide you to the next area naturally, so you never get lost. If you see a locked door, and the key ends up being deep within the level, when you get the key you'll unlock a shortcut back to the original door. The levels also are quite varied in their general architecture; some might involve a lot of swimming, another a lot of platforming, and a third might just have hazards you have to dodge.

The enemies are similarly varied across episodes. Every episode has a unique set of enemies, and while they always have the same broad selection of categories (the melee guy, the ranged guy, the big guy, the flying guy) the specific implementations of these classes changes from episode to episode, and as a consequence the best weapon to deal with them also changes. This helps keep all the weapons relevant, rather than seeing half your arsenal falling to the wayside because you got the "better" weapon for a mana type.

The game does do a weird thing, aesthetically, that I don't think works very well. The game's textures are highly pixelated, but these are still applied on models that use modern levels of anti aliasing and resolution. This ends up creating this weird effect when you get close and leaves everything a bit dirty from afar. When combined with the modern lighting effects you have this attempt at a older art style that just falls flat. Compare with Dusk, which uses old style lighting effects and has the textures being much more subtle, rather than the more detailed but chunky pixels of Amid Evil. It's not something that ruins the game by any stretch, but it does get noticeable at points and can be a bit distracting. But then they get points for having cheat codes Doom-style, which includes ones to set the graphics to one of the three CGA palettes, the EGA palette, or the VGA palette (although the latter ends up being a much more subtle change, given how much depth 256 colors already gives you).

Fans of retro FPS's should not pass this one up.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by Markies Sat Jun 22, 2019 5:56 pm

Markies' Games Beat List Of 2019!
*Denotes Replay For Completion*

1. Power Stone 2 (SDC)
2. Radiata Stories (PS2)
3. Dusty Diamond's All-Star Softball (NES)
***4. Saiyuki: Journey West (PS1)***
5. Shining In The Darkness (GEN)
***6. Metropolis Street Racer (SDC)***
7. Half-Life 2 (XBOX)
8. Soul Blazer (SNES)
9. Mario Party (N64)
10. Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance (GCN)
11. Street Fighter Collection (PS1)
12. Pokemon Stadium 2 (N64)
13. Burnout (PS2)
14. Phantasy Star III (GEN)

15. Batman: The Video Game (NES)

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I completed Batman: The Video Game for the Nintendo Entertainment System this afternoon!

As a child, I remember renting Batman several times from the video store. I always enjoyed playing it, but I could never get very far because of the difficulty. A few years ago, I was up at my favorite local video game store trading in some games. While looking around for what to purchase, I spotted Batman sitting there. It had always been cheap and very easy to find, so I was in no rush to pick it up. However, since I had some extra cash, I figured now would be a good time to pick up a great game from my childhood.

The best part about Batman, by far, is the music. It is simply rocking and I was humming along during the entire game. It is one of the best soundtracks on the system and I would put it right underneath some of the systems heavy weights. The cut scenes are also fantastic with the graphics looking exactly like the characters in the movie. It also moves the plot along nicely as well as adding some memorable scenes. The gameplay is very tight with some of the best wall jumping in video games. I wish Batman's punch was a little bit longer, but that is a common complaint I have in all NES games. The levels are varied and unique. They slowly ramp up throughout the game until you get to the final level. That final climb followed by the fight with Joker is one of the hardest levels on the NES. You will spend more time on that one level than the rest of the game combined. It also doesn't help that your invincibility frames are almost non-existent. You will get hit by the same enemy multiple times and it slowly begins to wear on you. The weapons are really good, though I wish you had something that shot up as that would help so much in the tower climb at the end of the game.

Overall, Batman is an incredibly good game that just misses the mark of being perfect. If you were to compare to other movie licensed games, it is in a league of its own. However, compared to other action platformers on the system, it is still in the upper echelon. I wouldn't say it's near the very top, but it is up there. The music adds so much to the game that many of its flaws can be overlooked. If you love NES action games, fantastic music and have a few hours to kill, you cannot go wrong on Batman. It really does dance with the devil in the pale moonlight.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by MrPopo Sun Jun 23, 2019 12:40 am

1. Octopath Traveler - Switch
2. Dusk - PC
3. Forsaken Remastered - PC
4. Tales of Eternia - PS1
5. Resident Evil 2 (2019) - PC
6. Pokémon Trading Card Game - GBC
7. Metro Exodus - PC
8. Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales - PC
9. Project Warlock - PC
10. Magic: The Gathering - PC
11. Ghost 1.0 - PC
12. Call of Duty 2 - PC
13. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice - PS4
14. Revelations: The Demon Slayer - GBC
15. Mechstermination Force - Switch
16. Shadow Warrior Classic Redux - PC
17. Lost Sphear - Switch
18. Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal - PC
19. Dragon Quest III - NES
20. Rage 2 - PC
21. Blood - PC
22. Harvest Moon 64 - N64
23. Battlefield V - PC
24. Sigil - PC
25. Shining Force III: Scenario 2 - Saturn
26. Shining Force III: Scenario 3 - Saturn
27. Borderlands 2: Commander Lillith and the Fight for Sanctuary - PC
28. Gato Roboto - Switch
29. Timespinner - Switch
30. Amid Evil - PC
31. Pillars of Eternity II: Beast of Winter - PC

Beast of Winter is the first of three story DLCs for Pillars II. It's approximately 4-5 hours long and fully voiced. The basic premise is that a glacier island in the south of the map has started expanding, and the leader of the village there sends for you to help. It turns out the island is the site of a portal to the realm of Rymrgard, the god of cold and entropy. Turns out, he's pissed that a dragon put her soul in a phylactery and tossed it into the portal in a bid to live forever. And it actually is working, in that her soul is beyond Rymrgard's grasp. So he wants you to put an end to her.

In order to get help on the quest (and you'll want it for the boss fight) you get to explore his realm and help some souls that have been stuck in limbo. By unsticking them they can help you, but it also means they'll eventually go to oblivion, so everyone wins. These souls are part of some pivotal events in the setting's backstory, so the DLC provides more insight into the game's world, making it quite worthwhile if you're a fan of the lore Obsidian has built up.

Aside from that, there's not a lot to say. If you're coming back to it at max level (like I did) then most of the fights will be easy enough, so your time isn't wasted. The boss fights still require management, so it's the right level of challenge for content like this, in my book.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by PartridgeSenpai Sun Jun 23, 2019 5:33 am

Partridge Senpai's 2019 Beaten Games:
Previously: 2016 2017 2018
* indicates a repeat

1. Night Slashers (Switch)
2. Bye-Bye BOXBOY! (3DS)
3. GTA4: The Ballad of Gay Tony (Xbox 360)
4. Katamari Forever (PS3)
5. Detention (PS4)
6. Donkey Kong 64 (N64) *
7. OctoDad: Dadliest Catch (PS4) *
8. FlintHook (Switch)
9. God of War (PS4)
10. God of War HD (PS3)
11. Tiny Barbarian DX (Switch)
12. God of War 2 HD (PS3)
13. Starlink (Switch)
14. Shin Gundam Musou (PS3)
15. Battle & Get! Pokemon Typing DS (DS)
16. Banjo-Kazooie (N64) *
17. Super Mario 64: Rumble Edition (N64)
18. Mario Party 3 (N64) *
19. Paper Mario (N64) *
20. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (SNES) *
21. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX (GBC) *
22. The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages (GBC) *
23. The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons (GBC) *
24. Yoshi's Island (SNES) *
25. Super Mario World (SNES) *
26. Super Mario RPG (SFC) *

27. Kaeru No Tame Ni Kane Wa Naru (GB)

Also known as "For Frog the Bell Tolls," AJ convinced me to check out this 1992 Japan-Exclusive Nintendo release whose engine would go on to be used for Link's Awakening. He said it was a neat adventure game with lots of very silly humor, and he was right! I got it for 400 yen on the Japanese 3DS eShop and played through it over a weekend, and it took me about 7 hours all together. While it was a game whose engine would go to be used for a Zelda game, the game itself is a pretty far cry from a typical Zelda game, and is much more a straight-up adventure game with a surface-coating of action and a big heaping pile of platforming on top of that.

The story sees you as the Prince of Sablé, who chases after his rival Prince Richard of the Custard Kingdom to save Princess Tiramisu from the dreaded Keronian Army attacking her kingdom of Mille-Feuille. Over the course of the game, you gain the ability to turn into a snake as well as a frog to get past all means of obstacles, and meet all sorts of colorful characters in all manner of locations. My personal favorites being the extremely stereotyped and eccentric "Japanese Businessman" Junbei (whose speaking style indicates he's a foreigner despite being in a Japanese game made for a Japanese audience) and Professor Arewo Stein, the eccentric wasabi-loving president of the Nantendo Company which you go visit (who actually would make cameo appearances in games all the way up to Wario Land 4!). The game has all sorts of silly fourth-wall breaking jokes and Junbei especially just sorta had my mouth agape whenever he was on screen because he's SUCH an odd character. I can't speak to the English fan translation's style of humor, but I really enjoyed the silly writing in the Japanese original ^w^

The overall design of the game is mostly adventure with platforming elements as well. It's VERY linear, with small sub-areas to explore for treasure, but a LOT of the game is talking, puzzle solving, and platforming. And I mean a LOT of talking, probably more than any other Nintendo game of the 8- or 16-bit eras I can think of that isn't Mario RPG. The signposting is excellent, and there was never a single time I was lost. The game always makes very explicit points of telling you where to go (even occasionally saving you the walk and teleporting you there via a cutscene), and there are literally signposts in the case of giant billboards in each town that have a "news bulletin" of what you just did and what you should be expected to do next. It's a fairly easy, relaxing game to spend a day or a weekend with.

The game has no actual combat, per se. Combat is decided by touching an enemy, and that initiates a kind of scuffle where you each take turns hitting each other until one of you dies. There is (almost) never any active element to the combat aside from just dodging enemies, and combat serves more as a puzzle barrier than anything else. Almost every boss battle relies on you having explored the map/dungeon to the point where you've found all the new weapons, stat boosts (attack, speed, max health) to the point where you can kill that boss with one heart remaining. If you can't kill a boss, you haven't explored enough, or there's an item you should be using.

The game also has a lot of side-scrolling sections which do a good job of breaking up the pace of walking around in a bird's eye view of the overworld. The overworld map and the side-scrolling sections should be immediately familiar to anyone who has spent time with any of the GB/GBC Zelda games, but the side-scrolling sections here are far longer, more numerous, and a lot harder. They're probably the hardest part of the game by a significant margin, as there are multiple points in the game where if you don't make a jump quite right, you'll fall in lava and be sent back to the hospital where you'll need to walk back to the dungeon and do the whooole thing over again. This is where playing it on the 3DS Virtual Console with save states was a real patience-saving godsend for me. It's honestly a bit of a shame they are so hard (and often at odd difficulty spikes in the game as well, as one will often be easier than the last and vice versa), because they make what's otherwise a fairly chilled out, silly adventure game have a much higher skill ceiling to enjoy than the lighthearted adventure portions would imply.

You solve many puzzles by talking to people to learn information or by changing form into a frog or snake. The frog can jump high, talk to frogs, and not die in water; the snake can talk to snakes, turn some enemies into blocks, and get small to fit in snake-sized holes; and human Prince (whom you name at the start) has average jumping, can talk to humans, and is by far the best at fighting. It sounds like a gimmick, but it really never felt like that. Never once did I find myself thinking "oh well now it's time for the obligatory frog bit of this dungeon," as I so often do with these types of games. Some later dungeons even make the dungeons a little more open and you are encouraged to try out two of the forms to progress, as each may be able to reach different treasure or a different way forward.

The main fault I'd say the game has, and it's a tiiiiny one, is how these transformations are handled though. You just enter water to turn into a frog, which is fine, but to turn back into a human, or to turn into a snake, you need to eat a consumable item, and if you didn't bring enough of those to the dungeon, you gotta warp out (which the game gives you an item to do) and go buy some at the town and do the whole dungeon over again. the game is pretty good about giving you a few of these consumables in dungeons, but it's never enough to do the dungeon. You'll need to have brought some. Money is really quick and easy to earn and you can carry a TON of those items at once, so it's a mistake you'll only make once, but it's still annoying to be worrying about whether you should just exit now or hope you have enough to finish the dungeon.

Verdict: Highly Recommended. This is definitely one of my all-time favorite Japan-exclusive games that I've played. I imagine it was for translation reasons (very text-heavy game with some awkward elements to translate adequately) that it was never brought over to the States, but it's a really fantastic game that's well worth playing with the fan translation patch. There really aren't any other adventure/side-scrolling games quite like this I can think of off the top of my head, but this has to be one of the best out there by a fair margin.
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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by MrPopo Sun Jun 23, 2019 4:33 pm

1. Octopath Traveler - Switch
2. Dusk - PC
3. Forsaken Remastered - PC
4. Tales of Eternia - PS1
5. Resident Evil 2 (2019) - PC
6. Pokémon Trading Card Game - GBC
7. Metro Exodus - PC
8. Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales - PC
9. Project Warlock - PC
10. Magic: The Gathering - PC
11. Ghost 1.0 - PC
12. Call of Duty 2 - PC
13. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice - PS4
14. Revelations: The Demon Slayer - GBC
15. Mechstermination Force - Switch
16. Shadow Warrior Classic Redux - PC
17. Lost Sphear - Switch
18. Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal - PC
19. Dragon Quest III - NES
20. Rage 2 - PC
21. Blood - PC
22. Harvest Moon 64 - N64
23. Battlefield V - PC
24. Sigil - PC
25. Shining Force III: Scenario 2 - Saturn
26. Shining Force III: Scenario 3 - Saturn
27. Borderlands 2: Commander Lillith and the Fight for Sanctuary - PC
28. Gato Roboto - Switch
29. Timespinner - Switch
30. Amid Evil - PC
31. Pillars of Eternity II: Beast of Winter - PC
32. Pillars of Eternity II: Seeker, Slayer, Survivor - PC

Seeker, Slayer, Survivor is the second piece of DLC for Pillars II. This DLC isn't as interesting as the first one. The basic plot is that there is an island that has a combat arena that's used to pay devotion to a god of the hunt, but there's something going wrong with the timbre of the souls in the area, so you get called in. In order to fix things you need to become champion of the arena, and this is about 90% of the DLC. You just do fights over and over. There isn't even really much in the way of neat treasure. Once you become champion you have a quick story sequence that ends with you resolving the problem one way or another. Once you do so you have a final boss fight for reasons; it's certainly not built up like the first DLC's was. There's a little bit of adding to the world backstory, but not much. Definitely a skippable bit of DLC.
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