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Markies
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by Markies Wed Dec 18, 2019 12:28 am

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)
16. X-Men Legends (XBOX)
***17. Final Fantasy VII (PS1)***
18. Maximum Pool (SDC)
19. Puzzle Quest (PS2)
20. Jet Moto (PS1)
21. The Legend of Zelda: Collector's Edition (GCN)
22. Dead Or Alive 3 (XBOX)
23. Growlanser III: The Dual Darkness
24. Luigi's Mansion (GCN)
25. Diddy Kong Racing (N64)
26. Wild Arms 4 (PS2)

27. Sonic & Knuckles (GEN)

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I beat Sonic & Knuckles on the Sega Genesis this evening!

When I first got my Genesis back in the day, it came with Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Besides a few other games, that was the game that I mostly played during the beginning of owning a Genesis. I know that game like the back of my hand and I can still almost beat it in a few short minutes. Slowly, I got more of the Sonic games on the Genesis. I got Sonic 1 and then Sonic 3. Much later, I finally acquired Sonic & Knuckles. Surprisingly, I never beat any of the games until my Backlogging days because all of the Sonic games are incredibly tough. They all require trial and error for a game with limited continues. However, one by one, each game began to fall until I only had Sonic & Knuckles left. Looking for a quick beat before 2019 ends, I decided to give Sonic & Knuckles a full try.

When I first got the game, I thought the lock on technology was rather neat. It was unique, but it wasn't ground breaking or anything to me. I did play around as Knuckles in Sonic 2, so that was kind of unique. I always thought Sonic 3 was the weakest of the first 3, so to have a game that just added more Sonic 3 wasn't all that appealing. But, it is still a comparable and interesting Sonic game. They do try new things in the game and do not go over any old territory. I also like the ability to play as Knuckles at the beginning as it feels like two different games wrapped in one.

However, in my eyes, the game never rises above more of Sonic 3. Knuckles is neat, but the game still feels like a continuation of Sonic 3. The music, which is normally the best part of the series, isn't all that good or memorable. The game's levels are incredibly and take a while to figure out where to go. Also, the bosses have the tiniest of weak points, so you will get hit more times than not. With a feeling of less guys and continues, the game feels harder than the others as you will be starting over many times. Unlike Sonic 3, there is no save feature and you don't start with any continues.

Overall, I was really glad that I was able to finish all of the Genesis Sonic games. Sonic 2 will always be my favorite because of nostalgia, but I also understand the merits of Sonic 1. Sonic 3 is interesting and Sonic & Knuckles builds on it. If you are a Sonic fan, it is worth owning. But, if you are new to Sonic, I would try with one of the others first before trying this one.
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dsheinem
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by dsheinem Wed Dec 18, 2019 7:55 am

Games Beaten 2019

Kentucky Route Zero Act 1 - PC
All Our Asias - PC
Shape of the World - Switch
Hidden Folks - PC
Hyrule Warriors - Wii U
Onrush - PS4
Assassin's Creed Origins - X1
Virtua Fighter 5: Final Showdown -360
Metro Exodus - PS4
Split/Second - 360
Far Cry: New Dawn - PS4
Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon - X1
Marvel vs Capcom Infinite - PS4
Rage - PC
Red Faction: Armageddon - 360
Momonga Pinball Adventure - Switch
Psycho Soldier - Vita (Arcade)
Super Mutant Alien Assault - Vita
Burly Men at Sea - Vita
Sigil - PC
Fat Princess - PS3
Borderlands 2: Commander Lilith and the Fight for Sanctuary - PC
Monster World IV - Genesis (PS3)
Marvel's Spider-Man - PS4
Mega Man X4 - Switch
Armored Warriors - Switch (Arcade)
Battle Circuit - Switch (Arcade)
Borderlands 3 - PS4
Hyper Dyne Side Arms - PS3(Arcade)
Legendary Wings - PS3 (Arcade)
The Outer Worlds - X1
Akai Katana - 360
RayStorm - PS2 (Arcade)
Operation C - PS4 (Game Boy)
Kid Dracula - Switch (Famicom)
Castlevania: The Adventure - Switch (Game Boy)
Castlevania II: Belmont's Revenge - Switch (Game Boy)
What the Golf - iOS
Untitled Goose Game - X1 *new*

Total: 39


Previously: 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010

The game that spawned a thousand memes...

This certainly has a lot of charm and left me giggling a few times, but the game is short and relatively easy. All told, my favorite element might have been the event-responsive piano soundtrack, which lends the whole thing a pastoral sheen. I can see going back to do some post-game things, but the "feel" of being a goose was sometimes more frustrating than fun, and it feels like it could have used a little more time to incubate.
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alienjesus
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by alienjesus Wed Dec 18, 2019 1:05 pm

Games Beaten 2019:
First 50:
1. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Switch
2. Alex Kidd in The Enchanted Castle Switch
3. Streets of Rage Switch
4. Vectorman Switch
5. Galaxy Force II Switch
6. Flicky Switch
7. Phantasy Star 2 Switch
8. Sonic the Hedgehog Switch
9. Altered Beast Switch
10. ESWAT: City Under Siege Switch
11. Columns Switch
12. Virtua Fighter 2 Switch
13. Kirby Star Allies Switch
14. Katamari Damacy Reroll Switch eShop
15. Pokémon: Let's Go, Eevee! Switch
16. Octodad: Dadliest Catch Switch eShop
17. Sword of Vermilion Switch
18. Decap Attack Switch
19. Golden Axe Switch
20. The Revenge of Shinobi Switch
21. Beyond Oasis Switch
22. WarioWare Gold 3DS
23. Shining in the Darkness Switch
24. Kid Chameleon Switch
25. Streets of Rage 2 Switch
26. Bio-Hazard Battle Switch
27. Super Thunder Blade Switch
28. Gain Ground Switch
29. Phantasy Star III: Generations of Doom Switch
30. Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Switch
31. Comix Zone Switch
32. Vectorman 2 Switch
33. Light Crusader Switch
34. Crack Down Switch
35. ToeJam and Earl Switch
36. Dynamite Headdy Switch
37. Golden Axe II Switch
38. Shadow Dancer: The Secret of Shinobi Switch
39. Columns III: Revenge of Columns Switch
40. Shining Force: The Legacy of Great Intention Switch
41. Kirby No Kirakira Kizzu Game Boy
42. Klonoa Wii
43. Looney Tunes Collector: Martian Alert! GBC
44. Mario Tennis N64
45. Fire Emblem Warriors Switch
46. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time [Randomiser] N64
47. The New Zealand Story SMS
48. Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana Switch
49. Shenmue 2 Dreamcast
50. Castlevania GBA

51. Mario Party N64
52. ActRaiser SNES
53. GoldenEye 007 N64
54. Mom Hid My Game Switch eShop
55. Money Puzzle Exchanger Switch eShop
56. Gunbird Switch eShop
57. Tokyo School Life Switch eShop
58. Musynx Switch
59. Gremlins 2: The New Batch NES
60. Subsurface Circular Switch eShop
61. Yoshi's Woolly World Wii U
62. ToeJam & Earl: Panic on Funkotron Switch
63. Bare Knuckle III Switch
64. Gunstar Heroes Switch
65. Space Harrier II Switch
66. Sonic Spinball Switch
67. Phantasy Star IV: The End of the Millennium Switch
68. Sonic 3D Blast Switch
69. Rabbids Go Home Wii
70. Alien Storm Switch
71. Alien Soldier Switch
72. Untitled Goose Game Switch eShop
73. Landstalker: The Treasures of King Nole Switch
74. Fatal Labyrinth Switch
75. Ristar Switch
76. Golden Axe III Switch
77. Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master Switch
78. Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine Switch
79. Bonanza Bros. Switch
80. Shining Force II [& Sega Mega Drive Classics] Switch
81. Castlevania Bloodlines Switch
82. Puyo Puyo Sun 64 N64
83. Chameleon Twist 2 N64
84. Cruis'n USA N64
85. Darkwing Duck Game Boy
86. Fortified Zone Game Boy
87. Lock 'N Chase Game Boy
88. Spanky's Quest Game Boy
89. Looney Tunes Collector: Martian Revenge! GBC




Darkwing Duck

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I had a few days off at the end of November, and I decided to use them playing through a selection of short games. Game Boy is always a good shout for bitesize fun, so I started off my time off with some 8 bit portable titles. Darkwing Duck was the first of these. This is a run n gun platformer by Capcom (as was the case with most Disney games of the era) and it originally appeared on the NES. How does the GB version hold up though?

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Darkwing Duck takes more than a few cues from Capcom’s own Mega Man, and it definitely feels like it’s running on the same engine. DW runs and shoots a little like the blue bomber, but he has a few gimmicks of his own too. First of all, he can find some ammo for special weapons he can use. Unlock Mega Man, these aren’t permanent armoury expansions, but temporary power ups with a range of advantages. These run off of gas ammunition which can be found throughout the level, but finding a new subweapon power up will replace the current one.

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Darkwing can also block shots by pressing down on the d-pad. This has him raise his cape in front of his face, which somehow blocks enemy projectiles. Is this something from the show? Unfortunately, whilst I know of the show and it’s theme tune, I don’t remember actually seeing it back in the day, so some of the enemies and stuff are lost on me. Finally, Darkwing can hang from some scenery, which is used frequently to cross gaps via jumping between lampposts or holding onto zip lines.

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There are 7 levels in the game, with you getting to play stages 1-3 in any order, and then 4-6 in any order too. The stages are all decent fun, but they don’t really stand out from each other as well as I would have liked – I’ve forgotten the theme of quite a few now, besides a couple of the more frustrating sections. They all look pretty nice for the Game Boy though, and the soundtrack, whilst no Mega Man quality, is fairly catchy and enjoyable too.

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Overall, Darkwing Duck is a decent time, and for the relatively low price it goes for it’s a worthy play on the Game Boy. It’s not exactly up there with the best on the system, but it’s still a great game. I’d recommend picking it up if you spot it.





Fortified Zone

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Fortified Zone is a top down action adventure game for Game Boy. The game is a bit like a full game version of the caves from Blaster Master on NES – with rooms filled with enemies to blast, spikes to avoid and other hazards to evade. You play as 2 different heroes who can be switched between at any time from the pause menu – the guy character has more firepower – he can have 3 bullets on screen at once compared to the girls 2 – but the girl character has the ability to jump which is necessary for some sections too. Generally, you want to play as the guy for most combat sections and the girl in between, although this can be affected by the subweapons and health of the character – which are stored separately. For example, the girl may have full health whilst the guy is almost dead, meaning you’ll want to use her for the next boss instead.

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The stages are set out like labyrinths, and there are 4 in total. The first stage is quite small, with only one floor, but later labyrinths are multiple floors with a ton of paths through them. Progress in some routes can be blocked by keys which are normally found on mini bosses and bosses (later levels have multiple boss rooms). They can also be blocked off by stuff like dark rooms full of pits – impossible to navigate until you turn on the lights, which often require you to navigate into the room from another direction.

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The bosses themselves are quite simple to defeat – they fill the screen (or often, several screens of space) and require taking down each section bit by bit, but there’s not too much strategy to it. Get a good angle and blast away whilst avoiding enemy fire. Later bosses are tougher, but you’ll also discover permanent health and weapon power extensions as you progress so by that point both of your characters are likely to be able to take a lot more punishment.

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Fortified Zone is pretty fun, but it has some flaws. For one, it’s super short – the whole game can easily be beaten in an hour or so , even on a first time play. Whilst the fortresses remind me of Blaster Master’s Caves or Zelda’s dungeons to some extent, they are completely missing all of the content in between that the others have, plus there’s less fortresses to boot. Secondly, the game is quite easy too – grabbing health power ups when you’re already at full health adds them to a stock in your inventory wich get automatically used if you would take a fatal hit, and there’s plenty of the first aid kits around to help that.

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Fortified Zone is a fairly nice looking game for the system. The sprites have a lot of detail, and the main character sprites are big and chunky too. Bosses are impressive despite the lack of backgrounds too, but the games environments are rather bland in comparison. This serves to make things clear and easy to take in on a 4 colour screen I guess, but it looks a but plain sometimes. The music of the game isn’t especially memorable, but it’s not bad by any means. You’ll generally enjoy listening to it as you make your way through the game.

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Overall, Fortified Zone is a pretty good time. It’s surprisingly short, perhaps a little disappointingly so, but it’s fun whilst it lasts. It’s not too pricy, so if you spot it it’s worth picking up and playing through. Just be prepared to have another game ready to go shortly afterwards





Lock ‘N Chase

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Lock ‘n’ Chase is a pac-man clone of sorts by Data East. You play as a thief who breaks into multiple banks with the intention of robbing them blind. This take the form of coins, which you collect around a maze-like level, pac-man style. The original Lock ‘N Chase was an arcade title which was very similar to it’s inspiration, but this Game Boy version isn’t just a straight port – it adds lots of new ideas to make something much more interesting than the original.

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Lupin the thief is not the most capable character in gaming, despite his trade. He can walk around the maze with the d-pad, but he can’t dodge, run, jump or attack. Instead, like pac-man, you must rely on clever movement to avoid enemies. Luckily, that’s not your only option though – firstly, there are multiple areas in each maze where you can set up barriers – after passing through the area, pressing B will create a temporary wall on the last barrier location you passed, blocking off your chasers. You can even trap pursuers between 2 barriers – but only for a while, because 2 barriers is all you have – once a third is set up, the first disappears. Grabbing lots of coins also spawns power ups on the stage worth bonus points. The money bag gives points and briefly stuns the police, allowing you some breathing room, whilst the diamond offers points and temporarily makes you invincible and boosts your speed.

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The game takes place over 6 worlds, each containing 3 levels. Each world introduces a new gimmick which will become a key mechanic during that world. Examples include a stage with doors that work as teleporters between parts of the maze, a stage with automatic doors which open slowly when you touch them, and a stage with sleeping policemen who will only wake up if you touch one of the alarm clocks on the path. The first stage of each world introduces the mechanic, the second offers a simple challenge with it, and the 3rd often ramps up in size and difficulty. Luckily, if you run out of lives you restart on the level you died on when you use a continue.

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18 stages isn’t very long, but Lock ‘N Chase does have a final trick to play – after beating the game, you get a cheat code which unlocks extra mode – essentially another 18 stages of much tougher challenges, doubling the games length.

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Lock ‘N Chase is an early title for the Game Boy, but it’s a good one. It manages to take a very basic arcade game and refresh it in a way that still manages to feel fun years later. The graphics of the game are simple, as expected for an early title, but they’re clean and charming, with silly cutscenes before and after each level too. The music is pretty good too, but the invincibility theme is a little painful to hear. Overall, this is a worthy and affordable pick up for the system that I think is worth giving a go. It’s not going to top my best Game Boy games ever list or anything, but I did enjoy the time I spent with it. Worth a bash.




Spanky’s Quest

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Spanky’s Quest is a game I picked up earlier in the year for a Together Retro theme and never got around to playing. The theme in question was ‘monkeys’, and yes, that’s seemingly the main thing this game is known for – the rather unfortunately named hero, Spanky the Monkey. However, the game interested me anyway for a few reasons. First of all, it’s a fun single screen game in the vain of Bubble Bobble or similar, which I tend to rather enjoy, and secondly, it was developed by Natsume, in the days when they put out excellent top-tier games. This one seems mostly forgotten – hopefully I won’t find out that quality is the reason why.

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Spanky’s Quest has Spanky the Monkey taking on 5 towers with the goal of defeating an evil witch for some reason (I don’t have the manual…). Each tower contains 16 levels of enemies defeating with a boss at the top of each. The enemies and bosses are all giant fruit because why not? Some just walk about as you might expect, but some are a bit different – bananas for example climb along walls and slide across floors, making them more hazardous.

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Spanky can fight back vs the killer fruit using his balls. Because the name wasn’t bad enough. By pressing B, spanky throws a bubble into the air, which he can then bounce on his head, with each head bounce making the bubble bigger. Pressing B again pops the bubble, sending balls outwards to attack and defeat enemies. In the SNES game, these are all sports balls (baseballs, basketballs etc) but on the Game Boy they’re just black circles.

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Depending on the size of the bubble when popped, different effects occur. Size one bubbles create one small ball which can hurt enemies. Second level bubbles release a trail of balls which create a damaging area for longer. Size 3 bubbles explode into several balls creating one localised area of damage, and the max size bubbles create a spread of 5 giant balls which fall down the screen. The level 2 and 4 effects are the best – 3rd tier bubbles are often underwhelming. Power-ups also exist – one which lets you throw baseballs to attack directly without bouncing bubbles, and also the letters of SPANKY which will clear the level when gathered. Spanky has limited lives but infinite continues, so progression is easy enough.

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Spanky’s Quest is a rather simple looking game, but I actually prefer the charming designs of the Game Boy title to the ugly character in the SNES game. Whilst the graphics are very simple, the game has style and charm to it that I quite enjoy. The music is pretty good in the game, with some 12 bar blues based tunes that are quite bouncy and fun.

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Overall, Spanky’s Quest doesn’t really deserve to be so forgotten. It’s a great little game for the Game Boy, and one with quite a lot of content to enjoy too. It’s fun to play, has a cute and charming presentation, and just the right balance of challenge. I think it’s well worth a purchase.





Looney Tunes Collector: Martian Revenge!

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Looney Tunes Collector: Martian Revenge! Is the sequel/counterpart game to Looney Tunes Collector: Martian Alert! Which I beat earlier in the year. As these games came out on the GBC in the late 90s you see, everyone wanted to get in on the Pokémon craze and have 2 versions of a game which could link together to trade and unlock content. That’s the case with these 2 games too, with different Looney Tunes characters available in each, but these aren’t quite 2 versions of the same content – as each game has a different plotline, and Revenge follows on directly from the events of Alert.

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In Martian Alert, Bugs Bunny thwarted Marvin the Martian’s attempts to destroy Earth. In Revenge, you play as Marvin, who, watching TV one day, sees Daffy Duck boasting about how he saved the day and how stupid Marvin is. Marvin decides to get Revenge on the duck, and thus begins a quest to Earth to deal with him.

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Now, although the story is different, it’s clear this game was built using the content from the first quite heavily. All of the areas from the game existed in Alert too, but this time you take a different route throughout the map. Some areas you didn’t really visit in the main story of Alert are utilised here and some places you went to Alert are not used. What’s clear though is that Alert was the primary focus of map design – Marvin jumps around the map really randomly here, teleporting via rainbows or flying to new locations in his spaceship – it’s not logically connected like before.

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That said, this game felt a lot more structured and coherent to me. One of my gripes with the first game was the amount of side stories that felt disconnected from the main game – here, that doesn’t happen and the adventure feels more focused overall. The core gameplay remains the same, and the game still has some annoying fetch quests, but I didn’t find any as aggravating as the first title.

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So overall, like Alert before it, Martian Revenge is surprisingly high quality licensed game. I’d hesitate to rate it above ‘decent’ but for a portable licensed title of it’s era, that’s still pretty good going. It also feels quite ambitious, with multiple playable characters and a big map to explore – not just the easy route of a sidescrolling platformer. If you spot this and fancy something different, it’s worth a go.
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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by MrPopo Wed Dec 18, 2019 8:06 pm

First 50:
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
33. Pillars of Eternity II: The Forgotten Sanctum - PC
34. Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night - Switch
35. Orphan - PC
36. Project Nimbus - PC
37. Hardcore Mecha - PC
38. Grey Goo - PC
39. Giants: Citizen Kabuto - PC
40. Wolfenstein: Youngblood - PC
41. Fire Emblem: Three Houses - Switch
42. Metal Wolf Chaos XD - PC
43. Ion Fury - PC
44. Final Fantasy Adventure - GB
45. Astral Chain - Switch
46. Rebel Galaxy Outlaw - PC
47. Blasphemous - Switch
48. Daemon x Machina - Switch
49. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening - Switch
50. Borderlands 3 - PC

51. Valfaris - Switch
52. Unreal: Return to Na Pali - PC
53. The Outer Worlds - PC
54. MechWarrior 4: Black Knight - PC
55. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare - PC
56. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided: System Rift - PC
57. MDK - PC
58. Pokémon Sword - Switch
59. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order - PC
60. Blazing Chrome - Switch
61. MDK 2 - PC
62. Heavy Gear - PC
63. Virtual-On - Saturn
64. Virtual-On: Oratorio Tangram - DC

OT is the younger, sexier version of Virtual-On. It takes everything you know about the first game, adds more mechs, prettier graphics, and some additional wrinkles to the combat system. However, these wrinkles also mean that you pretty much HAVE to use the twin sticks to get an optimal experience. Like before, with a twin stick you have turbo and fire on each stick, pull them apart to jump, together for the crouch maneuver (helpful for quick jumping to dodge stuff). In this installment you can modify your shots by hitting either left or right turbo at the same time as the shot (and each one is different). So it's not just "standing, jumping, dashing", you also have turbo modifiers. This is where the Dreamcast controller fails; by removing buttons you don't have the nice layout the Saturn did that let you map everything without weird finger contortions.

Gameplay-wise beyond that it's the same game as before. The replacement for Jaguarandi now cannot be skipped by doing well, and it unfortunately works under the "only vulnerable sometimes" mechanic that Z-Gradt did (and frankly, it looks like two Z-Gradts fused together). This makes it a pretty bad roadblock until you find the right mech with the mobility to dodge and the damage to kill it within time. The final boss is shockingly much easier; while it still uses a vulnerability phase system it's attacks are very easily dodged, due to being in a weird 3D space which gives you far more mobility than you are used to.

The basic review is this is more Virtual-On, though I'd say the twin sticks are mandatory for real fun with it.
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Games Beaten: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Blizzard Entertainment Software Developer - All comments and views are my own and not representative of the company.
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Markies
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by Markies Wed Dec 18, 2019 10:39 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)
16. X-Men Legends (XBOX)
***17. Final Fantasy VII (PS1)***
18. Maximum Pool (SDC)
19. Puzzle Quest (PS2)
20. Jet Moto (PS1)
21. The Legend of Zelda: Collector's Edition (GCN)
22. Dead Or Alive 3 (XBOX)
23. Growlanser III: The Dual Darkness
24. Luigi's Mansion (GCN)
25. Diddy Kong Racing (N64)
26. Wild Arms 4 (PS2)
27. Sonic & Knuckles (GEN)

***28. Secret of Mana (SNES)***

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I know that Secret of Mana has many flaws, many of them having to do with the production of the game. But, I think the game is a flawed masterpiece. Whenever I play the game, all I want to do is play more of it. The characters and setting is beautiful. The music is fantastic and the combat system is engaging and exciting. There are little things that annoy me after a while, but they do not take away from the overall enjoyment and love I have for this game. One of my all time favorites!
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by PartridgeSenpai Thu Dec 19, 2019 3:06 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)
28. Final Fantasy VI (SFC) *
29. Final Fantasy IV (SFC) *
30. Final Fantasy V (SFC)
31. Final Fantasy III (Famicom)
32. Mother 2 (SFC) *
33. Mother 3 (GBA) *
34. Hebereke (Famicom)
35. Donkey Kong Country 2 (SFC)
36. Donkey Kong Country 3 (SFC)
37. Donkey Kong Country (SFC) *
38. Wario's Woods (Famicom)
39. Paper Mario: Color Splash (Wii U)
40. Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam (3DS)
41. Luigi's Mansion (3DS) *
42. Paper Mario: Sticker Star (3DS)
43. Mario & Luigi Superstar Saga & Bowser's Minions (3DS)
44. Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story & Bowser Jr's Journey (3DS)
45. Tomato Adventure (GBA)
46. Corpse Party (PSP)
47. Rave Master: Fighting Live (GC)
48. Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (GBA) *
49. Castlevania: Circle of the Moon (GBA)
50. Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance (GBA) *
51. New Super Mario Bros. 2 (3DS)
52. The Outer Worlds (Xbone)
53. Momodora: Reverie Under the Moonlight (Xbone)
54. Guacamelee 2 (Xbone)
55. Steamworld Dig 2 (Xbone)
56. Yoku's Island Express (Xbone)
57. Guacamelee (Xbone) *
58. Blazing Chrome (Xbone)
59. Minit (Xbone)
60. Dishonored 2 (Xbone)
61. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided (Xbone)
62. Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night (Xbone)
63. Recore: Definitive Edition (Xbone)

64. Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition (Xbone)

One of the last Metroidvanias on Game Pass I hadn't beaten yet, I stayed away from Ori until now because I tried it on PC last year and bounced off of it hard. I decided to give it another chance, in a year of several second chances in my games beaten list, and I'm kinda glad I did. A lot of the problems that turned me away from Ori when I first tried it are absolutely still there, but I was able to push past them and find a sorta happy medium. I 100%'d the game on normal mode and it took me about 7 hours.

Ori and the Blind Forest is about a small sprite named Ori. He gets separated from his home in the great tree in a storm, and the tree tries to emit a massive surge of mystical light to find him, but is fatally wounded in the process. A creature called Naru finds Ori and raises him as a friend up until the decay caused by the great tree's death reaches their grove. Ori mourns the loss of his adopted mother and then sets out on a quest to find what destroyed the great tree and if anything can be done to fix it. The story is very simple but sweet, but it isn't trying to be anything more than that. The real focus of this game is its presentation, and it absolutely nails its look.

A soooorta 2.5D look (although more often 2D-looking), Ori and the Blind Forest is an absolutely beautiful game packed with color, detailed animations, and painting-like environments. Ori seems like a game that was made specifically to seem like a work of art come to life, and it absolutely achieves that. No loading screens means everything flows together visually as well as in pacing as you explore. Lots of ballad-y music brings the sort of somber yet hopeful tone of the visuals to life in a way that works well (although it certainly isn't my kind of music).

Unfortunatley, Ori's biggest strength is also one of its biggest flaws. The environments are SO detailed in the foreground, background, and everything in between, and packed with so much color that it can often be hard to tell what you can actually interact with. There were many times that I was super cautious when I didn't need to be because I thought something in the background was in a plane that I could interact with, and just as many times where I was suddenly killed or heavily damaged out of nowhere because something I thought was in the background was in fact something I could interact with. The game's visual design is very loud, too loud, and that really brings down the game's platforming often enough to be a consistant nuisance.

The other biggest design bugbear about that is that there are a ton of one-hit deaths and quite tricky jumps in the game, so not being confident in what you can even interact with can get you killed a LOT. The game's main saving grace in this respect is its save system, which is almost save-anywhere. Hold B and you make a save point where you're at where you can also assign skillpoints from. It makes what could be an infuriating time a much more forgiving one (but also kinda hilarious given that the game DOES have a hardcore "only one life" mode).

Ori's gameplay is a Metroidvania, but one that takes things a little bit differently from most others I've played. The closest thing I can think of would be Yoku's Island Express, as not only is Ori also about a small creature trying to save a beautiful, colorful wooded world, but the main mechanic is movement. Combat is handled almost entirely by mashing X to launch homing projectiles at nearby enemies. There is almost no aiming other than an optional, not that great grenade projectiles, that's more for hitting switches than fighting. The main mechanic of Ori is its platforming and world exploration, and it doesn't exactly come off on the best foot there either.

A lot of early game stuff is weirdly hard, and I'd say many of the game's hardest platforming is in its first hour or two before you get things like the wall jump or double-jump. Later platforming is hard by virtue of lots of instant-death traps, but early platforming has a lot of jumps very easy to miss if you aren't really trying (heck one of the first jumps in the game is one of those). The maps feel like they were designed with Ori's mid-game or end-game moveset in mind instead of the moveset you'd have when you first reach that area, and as a result the game's best content and flow is after the first hour or two.

The game has a skill point system that you can use after you've killed enough enemies to level up or found an instant level up item hidden in the world. There's an achievement for beating the game with no skill points used, so these level ups are entirely for making the game easier to play for the player. That on top of some optional yet very useful unlockable traversal skills (like the dash and aforementioned grenade) go towards making the game more or less as tricky as the player wants it to be (to a point). Much more powerful homing projectiles, the ability to see hidden walls far easier, and even a second double jump lie in wait if you just get enough skill points. This is a really neat idea as a way to allow the player to grind to make the game easier despite the lack of a combat focus, and is definitely one of the more ingenious elements of Ori's design.

Verdict: Hesitantly Recommended. Part of my lower recommendation for this is certainly due to me preferring different Metroidvanias. The focus on platforming rather than combat isn't quite my cup of tea. But the bigger part of it is how the game stumbles so significantly on the one thing it's supposed to be the best at mechanically. A cluttered visual design hindering the platforming was the recurring mistake that kept me irritated with the game over and over, just as I had started to enjoy it again. Between that and the weirdly omnipresent yet indirect combat, the game struggles with an identity crisis from start to finish that isn't deal breaking but is also quite hard to ignore. That probably won't be a problem for a lot of people, but if your time for Metroidvanias is limited, I think a lot of people can find games (especially on Game Pass) that will better suit their time than Ori.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by REPO Man Fri Dec 20, 2019 5:41 am

Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid for PS4. Decent fighter but if you're not a Power Rangers fan don't bother, especially for its price. Really wish they'd make a Power Rangers games that was a great game first and a piece of merchandise second. But at best, a Power Rangers game is always a decent rental. Mostly they just suck, especially post-MMPR.
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by PartridgeSenpai Fri Dec 20, 2019 8:35 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)
28. Final Fantasy VI (SFC) *
29. Final Fantasy IV (SFC) *
30. Final Fantasy V (SFC)
31. Final Fantasy III (Famicom)
32. Mother 2 (SFC) *
33. Mother 3 (GBA) *
34. Hebereke (Famicom)
35. Donkey Kong Country 2 (SFC)
36. Donkey Kong Country 3 (SFC)
37. Donkey Kong Country (SFC) *
38. Wario's Woods (Famicom)
39. Paper Mario: Color Splash (Wii U)
40. Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam (3DS)
41. Luigi's Mansion (3DS) *
42. Paper Mario: Sticker Star (3DS)
43. Mario & Luigi Superstar Saga & Bowser's Minions (3DS)
44. Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story & Bowser Jr's Journey (3DS)
45. Tomato Adventure (GBA)
46. Corpse Party (PSP)
47. Rave Master: Fighting Live (GC)
48. Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (GBA) *
49. Castlevania: Circle of the Moon (GBA)
50. Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance (GBA) *
51. New Super Mario Bros. 2 (3DS)
52. The Outer Worlds (Xbone)
53. Momodora: Reverie Under the Moonlight (Xbone)
54. Guacamelee 2 (Xbone)
55. Steamworld Dig 2 (Xbone)
56. Yoku's Island Express (Xbone)
57. Guacamelee (Xbone) *
58. Blazing Chrome (Xbone)
59. Minit (Xbone)
60. Dishonored 2 (Xbone)
61. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided (Xbone)
62. Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night (Xbone)
63. Recore: Definitive Edition (Xbone)
64. Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition (Xbone)

65. Super Lucky's Tale (Xbone)

The Game Pass train keeps on a chuggin' as I try and get in as much as I can before my sub expires in a few days. All I really remembered about this game was that it was basically the only thing Microsoft had at the launch of the Xbox One X, and people were kinda like "this is IT?" for the launch of what was apparently the new most powerful console ever. I don't have an Xbone X, but I DO have Game Pass, so I figured why not. It took me about 4 hours and 15 minutes (according to the Xbone's Stats clock) to get all 99 clovers in the base game.

It's a really simple story about a fox boy named Lucky who really wants to be a hero just like his cool big sister. Lucky gets his chance when his sister brings back a magical book with the power to contain whole worlds inside it. The evil Kitty Litter (this game has SO many cat puns, omg), a gang of evil cats, tries to steal the book, and Lucky saves his sister by jumping into the book after them but locking them all in in the process. He needs to collect lucky clovers (the stars of this game) in order to unlock gates so he can beat each member of the Kitty Litter and stop their evil father from changing history to rule the world (the book can also change history as well as connect to alternate worlds. It's exactly as confusing as it is entirely unimportant XP).

Super Lucky's Tale is a stage-based 3D platformer that reminded me a lot of the first Sly Cooper game. You run around, can swing your tail to hit stuff, double jump, and there's a fairly generous climbing mechanic to get you on top of a ledge you juuuust can't reach. You can also hold RT to dig underground, and it's an interesting way that they create some timed platforming challenges, as you can't stop your momentum while you're underground, and you exit the underground with an auto-jump. It handles well, but Lucky moves a bit slow. You only have 3 hits before you die, and the game isn't thaaat frivolous with health power-ups, so especially if you're going for max completion the game is surprisingly difficult for what I expected from it.

Each level has 3 goals and a final objective. Get 300 coins, find the secret clover, and collect the 5 letters of "LUCKY". Completing one will give you a clover, with a total of 4 clovers in each level. There are also some bonus stages you can access from the hub areas of each of the game's 4 worlds which are divided into auto-runners, pushing block puzzles, and marble-tilting mazes, which award a single clover each. The level design is good, with lots of nooks and crannies to explore to find coins and LUCKY letters. I'd heard the game had camera issues on the Xbone original, but those must've been patched out or something because I never encountered them. The camera is fixed at one point, for the most part, but you can tilt it from side to side if you need to. The only real flaw to the game is that there just isn't much to it (and also I fell through the floor a few times when I got hit by a projectile from above XP).

Verdict: Hesitantly Recommended. If you can get SLT for like $15 or $20, or if you can play it on Game Pass, I'd say it's worth a play. It's a good game, if utterly unambitious in its genre, but it's also just way too short to justify a high price tag. That new Switch version for $40 does not add THAT much content, and honestly if the game were twice as long it'd only barely begin to approach being worth $40. Maybe for some people this game will be worth that much money, but for any veteran of 3D platformers like me, you'll likely blaze through it fast enough that you'll feel your money could've been better spent despite the good time you had with this.
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by PartridgeSenpai Sat Dec 21, 2019 4:36 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)
28. Final Fantasy VI (SFC) *
29. Final Fantasy IV (SFC) *
30. Final Fantasy V (SFC)
31. Final Fantasy III (Famicom)
32. Mother 2 (SFC) *
33. Mother 3 (GBA) *
34. Hebereke (Famicom)
35. Donkey Kong Country 2 (SFC)
36. Donkey Kong Country 3 (SFC)
37. Donkey Kong Country (SFC) *
38. Wario's Woods (Famicom)
39. Paper Mario: Color Splash (Wii U)
40. Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam (3DS)
41. Luigi's Mansion (3DS) *
42. Paper Mario: Sticker Star (3DS)
43. Mario & Luigi Superstar Saga & Bowser's Minions (3DS)
44. Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story & Bowser Jr's Journey (3DS)
45. Tomato Adventure (GBA)
46. Corpse Party (PSP)
47. Rave Master: Fighting Live (GC)
48. Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (GBA) *
49. Castlevania: Circle of the Moon (GBA)
50. Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance (GBA) *
51. New Super Mario Bros. 2 (3DS)
52. The Outer Worlds (Xbone)
53. Momodora: Reverie Under the Moonlight (Xbone)
54. Guacamelee 2 (Xbone)
55. Steamworld Dig 2 (Xbone)
56. Yoku's Island Express (Xbone)
57. Guacamelee (Xbone) *
58. Blazing Chrome (Xbone)
59. Minit (Xbone)
60. Dishonored 2 (Xbone)
61. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided (Xbone)
62. Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night (Xbone)
63. Recore: Definitive Edition (Xbone)
64. Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition (Xbone)
65. Super Lucky's Tale (Xbone)

66. Snake Pass (Xbone)

Still going through Game Pass games that are shorter but look neat, I tried out the coincidentally named Snake Pass today. Yet another 3D platformer (of sorts) in a jungle as an animal, it was a choice between this and Super Lucky's Tale the other day, and I'm glad in retrospect I didn't pick this one XP. Though it took me almost twice as long as SLT to get all the collectibles in (around 8 hours), I enjoyed my time with Snake Pass far less.

If you thought that Super Lucky's Tale had a threadbare and unimportant story, just get a load of Snake Pass! The story is so threadbare it may as well not even be there. Doodle the hummingbird comes to wake Noodle the snake after one of the stones to the warp gate in that area of their forest has been dislodged. Noodle and Doodle then go around from area to area putting the stones back and being given very obvious (and very unskippable) cutscenes of who dun it. Even upon replaying a level, cutscenes (the few there are) are unskippable, and the story is otherwise so unimportant to the game that it may as well just not be there and save us the unskippable cutscenes.

The gameplay of Snake Pass is you as Noodle the snake going around and collecting the 3 warp stones in each of 15 levels. Also in each stage are 20 wisps to collect and 5 gatekeeper coins (which are functionally identical. The coins are just usually harder to find/get to). Now you may be asking yourself, "but Pidge, only 15 levels, I know you went for 100% collectibles, but how is that an 8 hour game?" Well, fair reader, the reason is very simple: Noodle is a snake, and for better or worse (usually worse) he controls like one.

Holding RT moves Noodle forward, the left joystick moves his head, and holding A makes him look upward. Holding LT "tightens his muscles", which basically means that your friction increases to whatever you're clinging to, allowing for time for some more precise movements for when platforming gets tricky. The right stick also moves the camera around, and pressing Y makes Doodle grab your tail and hold it up for you (invaluable for lightening your weight if just your head is on a platform and you're desperately trying to get up and not fall). To give the game devs credit, Noodle does genuinely move like a snake. You can't just move in a straight line, as that's not how a snake moves. Winding from side to side makes you speed up, whether you're on the ground or trying to climb up one of the game's many bamboo climbing poles (or trying to Skyrim your way up a rock face you definitely shouldn't be able to but can regardless).

This game's level design is generally fine. The main issue the game has is that the control layout is inexcusably terrible. RB re-positions the camera behind you, sure, but your thumb has SO many jobs between A, Y, and the right stick that there were an uncountable number of times that I died because I couldn't simultaneously raise my head and call for Doodle, or keep my head raised and reposition the camera to see what I was even doing. There is absolutely no reason you cannot re-bind the buttons, there is no reason lifting your head couldn't also be LB, heck I think the B button literally does nothing, so who the heck knows why calling Doodle is bound to Y and not B (X is for diving in water).

The game's main challenge and conceit is that it's awkward and difficult to control, and the bad controller layout does not help that. But this isn't a game where awkward controls are part of the silly design of the game like Surgeon Simulator or Octodad. Ohhhhh no. This is just THE GAME. World 2 (out of 4) is probably the hardest part of the game because suddenly the game forces you, not even for extra collectibles, to master how to cross a horizontal climbing beam and the nearest checkpoint is quite far away. It does not surprise me even remotely, looking at the achievement stats, that so few people who play this game actually finish world 2, let alone beat the game (heck I think even beating world 1 is something less than 10% of players have done).

Most of what could be called the fun levels are the first four that make up the game's first world. After that, the kid gloves are off, and the game starts upping the challenge just enough with each stage that you constantly need to reevaluate just how well you've learned to control Noodle, and it's never not frustrating. Dying is an ever constant part of this game as you wrestle with the control layout, the control design, and the not always clear physics of how Noodle moves. The only saving grace is that respawns are so quick, but the pain in the butt is that checkpoints are not so frequent (although thank goodness you can reuse them as many times as you want).

Verdict: Not Recommended. Snake Pass feels like a student project about snake movement that was pushed into being a full-fledged game before they actually had the main meat of it fully thought out. "Surgeon Sim, but a challenging platformer" is a pretty bad look for any game, but it's really the only way I can describe this. If you have it for free through Game Pass like I did, maybe it'd be worth your time if you have genuinely nothing else to do, as conquering the game's awkward controls does feel rewarding (and that rewarding feeling is honestly the best part of the game), but I would never say you should pay money for Snake Pass. Your time and money are almost certainly spent on some other indie game, because Snake Pass is largely just a ticket to frustration.
I identify everyone via avatar, so if you change your avatar, I genuinely might completely forget who you are. -- Me
pook99
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by pook99 Sat Dec 21, 2019 2:17 pm

@markies: Sonic and knuckles is a game that has been on my bucket list forever, I don't know if I'll ever get around to playing it and I think since we have games like sonic mania and freedom planet now I would probably be better served playing them instead of that. I do love knuckles though which is my main draw for wanting to play it.

Secret of mana is also on my bucket list, I definitely need to play that at some point, I may even pick up the collection on switch, I may be more inclined to play it if it is portable

@aj: have you played nes darkwing duck? From your screen shots it looks like they are the same game, but I dd is one of my favorite nes games, mainly because I was a huge fan of the cartoon and mega man as a kid.

@partridge: I had the same criticism of ori as you did when I first started playing it, I was about to quit the game completely because of the visual clutter, but then I turned the brightness on my monitor all the way up and it become much easier to see what was going on and I subsequently fell in love with the game. I'm not sure if that would help, but it did work for me.

188. Shovel knight: King of cards

This may be the last game I finish this decade, and if it is, I couldn't have asked for a better send off to an amazing decade of gaming.

I want to start by taking a moment to gush over yacht club games and their amazingly consumer friendly business practices. I bought shovel knight: treasure trove a few years ago for about $12, for that price I got 4 of the best 2d platformers ever made and a smash clone that I heard was good but havent played myself yet. In an age where every developer tries to rob consumers of money on just about every front, it is great to see a developer reward their customers for their patronage. I would gladly pay full price for every game in the shovel knight saga and I will day 1 buy any game yacht club puts out, their good business practices deserve to be rewarded.

King of Cards is the tale of king knight and bears the mark of being a story about a completely unlikable protagonist, and I mean that in the most endearing way possible. The other 3 heroes in the series were all endearing in their own way and made you root for them/empathize with them, but king knight is a complete pompous jerk, who is materialistic, detached, bratty, and a complete jerk to everyone around him. Despite his pomp, the story in this game is extremely well told and will make you laugh out loud on several occasions. As the story goes, King knight is a spoiled loser living with his mom and he wants to be king. There is a card game called Joustus and king knight sets off on a quest to become the king of cards by besting the 3 joustus judges.

The story is silly and the characters are exactly what you want them to be, the dialogue is well written and light hearted and it is hard to interact with other characters without smiling. As endearing as the story is the game play is where the game truly shines. King knight starts with the ability to shoulder dash, but when he successfully bashes into enemies/walls/platforms, he then performs a spin jump, if you bounce off anything while spinning you will gain some height and the ability to perform another shoulder dash, which could potentially repeat an infinite number of times under the right circumstances.

The game uses this mechanic in incredibly clever ways and every level is designed around it. In typical shovel knight fashion, every level presents new obstacles, and every level does a great job of easing you into the mechanics of that new obstacle. This game is a master class in game design, you never feel unprepared for what comes next, but at the same time there are some very challenging segments, combine this with the sheer amount of variety in the stages and you have a game that is an absolute joy to play from start to finish.

KOC takes a slightly different approach to level design than the other games, the levels in this game are short(usually with only one checkpoint) but there are a lot more levels in this game than the other games, and most levels do not end in a boss fight. There are also 3 medallions hidden throughout each level as well as secret exits. One of the things i love most about these games is how there are always subtle cues to where the secrets are, this is not one of those annoying games where you have to bash every wall hoping to find hidden stuff, there is always a hint which makes exploring for secrets a lot of fun. I rarely 100% games but I did 100% just about every game in the shovel knight collection.

The medallions collected throughout the levels are used to buy relics(think of them as subweapons from castlevania), the relics have a wide variety of uses, some help attacks(like a throwable lance) some help movement(like the bubble float that lets you shoulder dash again in mid air without having to bounce off something) and some help both(like the flame sword which acts as a huge power move against bosses but also functions as a double jump). The relics are a lot of fun to use and smart use of them makes the platforming and combat much easier.

In addition to the absolutely amazing game, there is also a card game that can be played as a side game. The card game is completely optional, you can beat the game without ever playing it, and when I first read about it, I thought I would never touch it as it would just distract from the platforming. I was wrong, and I found myself sinking alot of time playing the card game and wound up beating every card player in the game, it would be too hard to describe the rules of the game here, but it is simple enough to learn while also having a surprising amount of complexity. There are tons of cards to collect and I had a lot of fun customizing my deck to take on the increasingly difficult opponents.

I haven't sat down and thought too much about my game of the decade yet, but I honestly think treasure trove may be it, or at the very least in my top 5. The quality of these games are all unmatched, if you haven't played any of them yet, you need to pick up the shovel knight treasure trove and if you already did then you should be playing king of cards right now, it is just an amazing end to an amazing series of games.
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