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alienjesus
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

by alienjesus Mon Jun 07, 2021 12:09 pm

REPO Man wrote:I didn't care for Narita Boy after playing a demo. But I gotta say Kung Fury is frickin' tits! Have you seen Commando Ninja? It's free on YouTube and would make a BITCHIN' game.



You'll have to settle for Ninja Commando instead:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eoyQdxJgD0I&ab_channel=WorldofLongplaysWorldofLongplays
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ElkinFencer10
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

by ElkinFencer10 Mon Jun 07, 2021 4:01 pm

Games Beaten in 2021 - 40
* denotes a replay

January (12 Games Beaten)
1. God of War - PlayStation 3 - January 1
2. God of War II - PlayStation 3 - January 2
3. God of War: Chains of Olympus - PlayStation 3 - January 3
4. God of War: Ghost of Sparta - PlayStation 3 - January 4
5. God of War III - PlayStation 4 - January 6
6. God of War: Ascension - PlayStation 3 - January 9
7. God of War [2018] - PlayStation 4 - January 16
8. Epic Dumpster Bear 2: He Who Bears Wins - PlayStation 4 - January 16
9. God of War: Betrayal - Mobile - January 17
10. Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit - Switch - January 18
11. Muv-Luv photonflowers* - Steam - January 22
12. Muv-Luv photonmelodies♮ - Steam - January 27


February (5 Games Beaten)
13. Gun Gun Pixies - Switch - February 1
14. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel - PS4 - February 8*
15. Pantsu Hunter: Back to the 90s - Vita - February 13
16. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II - PS4 - February 17*
17. Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky - Steam - February 23


March (3 Games Beaten)
18. Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky SC - Steam - March 4
19. Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky 3rd - Steam - March 7
20. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III - PS4 - March 21


April (7 Games Beaten)
21. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV - PS4 - April 5
22. Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After 00 - Steam - April 7
23. Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After 01 - Steam - April 10
24. Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After 02 - Steam - April 11
25. Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After 03 - Steam - April 13
26. Neptunia Virtual Stars - PS4 - April 18
27. Before Your Eyes - Steam - April 18


May (9 Games Beaten)
28. New Pokemon Snap - Switch - May 2
29. Resident Evil 8: Village - PS5 - May 8
30. Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Switch - May 15
31. Torment: Tides of Numenera - Xbox One - May 18
32. Pepsiman - PS1 - May 20
33. Super Blackjack Battle II Turbo: The Card Fighters - Switch - May 20
34. Reel Fishing: Road Trip Adventure - Switch - May 23
35. Planetscape: Torment - Steam - May 26
36. Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne - Switch - May 31


June (4 Games Beaten)
37. Hentai vs Evil - Switch - June 1
38. Troll and I - Switch - June 2
39. Zombie Army 4: Dead War - PlayStation 4 - June 5


40. Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 - Switch - June 6

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Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 is the sixth installment in the "Mario and Sonic" series, and it showcases what I personally consider to be one of the worst things about 2020; they moved the city and year to the end of the title. It should be "Mario and Sonic at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games" if they were going to keep the pattern they'd previously set, but no, they had to go and break the trend and make it "Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020." Sure, it may not matter to literally anyone except me, but it bugs the hell out of me, so it's starting off this review with a strike against it.

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This is basically a collection of mini games with different sporting events from the Olympics. You've got 24 events - 21 real Olympic events and three "dream" events - and ten minigames. These minigames and events can obviously be played solo against an AI player or against another player in local multiplayer, but you also have the option of online play here. In a first for the series, though, they include a story mode. Normally, I'm all about story mode in games, but it just felt kind of pointless to me here. The basic premise of the story is that Eggman and Bowser have this plan to trick Mario and Sonic into activating a mysterious game console that sucks them into a game world and traps them in a pixelated Tokyo for the 1964 Olympics. That's great and all, but because Bowser is an idiot, he and Eggman (plus Toad; poor Toad) end up getting sucked into the game, too. The story then jumps back and forth between Mario and Sonic trying to figure out how to get out of the game and Luigi and Tails trying to figure out how the rescue the two protagonists. It's basically just an excuse to go through the different events and minigames, but it's not bad, per se. It just felt unnecessary. I didn't feel like it really added anything. What I would have preferred, personally, is if they made it like a team management mode where you have to assemble a team of Mario and Sonic characters and compete through each event to try to get the most medals. The way they did the story mode definitely didn't hinder the game, though. I do have to commend them for using the 8-bit (for Mario characters) and 16-bit (for Sonic characters) sprites in the Tokyo 1964 parts of the game and modern 3D models in the Tokyo 2020 parts of the game. That was a very nice touch.

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A lot of the events feel fairly similar to be honest; 100m spring, 110m hurdles, 100m rally, and marathon, for example, all feel pretty same-y. Some are really unique, though; I thoroughly enjoyed the discus throw, rugby sevens, archery, and canoe racing. I would have enjoyed fencing if they hadn't made one major (and in my opinion unforgiveable) mistake; the bout stops and both fencers return to starting positions after a point is scored. This is more than just a former fencer nit-picking video game fencing; because they don't stop the bout and have the characters return to the starting position, you and just cheese it by thrusting repeatedly until you rack up enough points to win. It definitely bugs me more than it would bug most people since I am a former fencer, but that's a pretty big flaw in general. Still, though, that aside, the selection of events and minigames does give the game a lot of variety, and even if you end up disliking some or even most of the events, there's bound to be at least a few that you find enjoyable.

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One thing that my roommate and I both noticed is that some of the character models (but not all) look rather jaggy. Part of this is definitely because I use a big screen, so those things are more noticeable, but Mario, for example, looked as if his model had more jagged edges than Sonic. I don't know if it's the he was at or if there really is something with the models, but a lot of the game appeared a bit more jagged than I'd have expected. It's not a huge thing, and most people would probably never noticed, but my roommate and I both did, so I figured that I'd mention it here. Sound design is fine but nothing to write home about. No real voice acting aside from a few short lines here and there that get repeated to denote when characters speak, and background music is good but forgettable. Overall, it's a wholly okay auditory presentation.

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Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 is a solid but not stellar sports minigame collection. It doesn't really excel at anything aside from variety, but all of the events and minigames are fun even if simple. It's definitely best suited for local multiplayer. Get some of your friends together, get drunk, and have a tournament. You'll probably get bored pretty quickly if you're playing solo, and I can't see playing online having a lot of lasting appeal although I'm sure there are those who would disagree. I mainly bought this for the novelty of having a game based on Olympics that didn't happen (at least not when the game says they did) given that this game released a month before the first reported case of COVID-19 in Wuhan, China. Still, though, the events were more entertaining than I was expecting. I wouldn't say it really impressed me much, but I had some fun with it and certainly don't regret my purchase. Pick it up if you have friends to play with, but if you're a mostly solo gamer, this probably isn't a necessary purchase.
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

by MrPopo Tue Jun 08, 2021 1:19 am

Previous Years: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020

1. EYE: Divine Cybermancy - PC
2. Legend of Grimrock - PC
3. Legend of Grimrock 2 - PC
4. Shovel Knight - Wii U
5. Yakuza: Like a Dragon - PS4
6. Yoshi's Island - SNES
7. Vectorman 2 - Genesis
8. Super Mario Sunshine - GC
9. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Master Quest - GC
10. Bomberman '93 - TG-16
11. Cannon Fodder - PC
12. Panzer Dragoon II Zwei - Saturn
13. Dragonborne - Game Boy
14. Rock n' Roll Racing - PC
15. The Lost Vikings - PC
16. Blackthorne - PC
17. Contra III: The Alien Wars - SNES
18. Bravely Default II - Switch
19. Axelay - SNES
20. Ryse: Son of Rome - XBOne
21. Killer Instinct (2013) - XBOne
22. Heretic Kingdoms: The Inquisition - PC
23. Thief: The Dark Project - PC
24. Killer Instinct - XBOne
25. Killer instinct 2 - XBOne
26. Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth - PC
27. Thief 2: The Metal Age - PC
28. Wing Commander II - PC
29. Wing Commander III - PC
30. The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV - Switch
31. Shadow Man Remastered - PC
32. Wing Commander: Privateer - PC
33. Salt and Sanctuary - Switch
34. The Elder Scrolls: Arena - PC
35. The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall - PC
36. Resident Evil Village - PC
37. SaGa Frontier Remastered - Switch
38. Metaloid: Origin - Switch
39. SaGa Scarlet Grace: Ambitions - Switch
40. Metro Exodus: The Two Colonels - PC
41. Metro Exodus: Sam's Story - PC
42. Panzer Paladin - Switch
43. Returnal - PS5
44. Dark Void Zero - DSiWare
45. Panzer Dragoon Saga - Saturn
46. Magic Knight Rayearth - Saturn

Magic Knight Rayearth is one of the earlier games in the Saturn's life (part of the system reveal game list) but ended up being the last US game released due to a variety of shit that happened when it was being localized (including a chunk of source being lost and needing to be recreated from scratch). While it gets called an RPG it 100% is not; it's a Zelda game that doesn't have dungeon items. It's not terribly long and has a good difficulty curve, so it's a pretty fun experience overall.

The basic plot is that three girls in Tokyo get magically pulled into another world as they are the fabled Magic Knights who will save the kingdom from the big bad. They must awaken the three Machines (giant mecha) in order to fully awaken as Magic Knights, so the journey is to find the three Machines and grow as people along the way. There's a colorful cast of minions for the big bad who seek to stop you, and there are a variety of plucky towns along the way that need help that coincidentally also help you find the Machines.

The game is an overhead action adventure where you can freely switch between the three girls. One has a wide slash, one has a long thrust, and one has a bow. Each has their own health meter and magic meter and each has their own collection of spells. The dungeons tend to have a fair amount of Zelda-esque puzzle solving; block puzzles, activating doodads with magic spells, and the like. At fixed points in your journey each character will independently gain a weapon level which increases the strength of their weapon; this mostly is an increase in its effective hit box. So while at the beginning of the game it feels a bit like Golden Axe Warrior of taking cheap hits due to hitboxes, but the end of the game the thrust goes across half the screen and the wide slash clears a wide area in front of you, while the bow fires a full spread of homing arrows.

The game really nails the feel of an anime series; you can almost see the manga panels as you play through the game as you can follow the "party arrives at town, party gets to know the people, party discovers something weird, party finds the breadcrumb to the combat area" sort of thing that goes on to keep things moving. It uses regular bits of animated cutscenes for important story moments; one minor complaint is a lot of these are actually fairly quick clips (a few seconds) which becomes really noticeable on the slowish disk read on the Saturn. A few times it feels like they should have just made a longer bit of animation so it doesn't have to cut to animation, back to game for a few dialog boxes, then back to animation again.

Overall it's a pretty solid action adventure game. It's not going to blow your socks off, but it's also not going to get you to throw a controller. It does have this neat feature where as the adventure progresses each of the girls writes in a diary, giving you some more character insight. And while there's a handful of Irelandisms overall the localization is pretty solid for a non-Woolsey game. It's a bit Americanized but isn't super full of pop culture like other Working Designs games.
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Blizzard Entertainment Software Developer - All comments and views are my own and not representative of the company.
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Raging Justice
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

by Raging Justice Tue Jun 08, 2021 4:53 am

Games Beaten:

Kaze and the Wild Masks
Raging Justice
Narita Boy

Mighty Goose - Played on PS4, also available on Switch, Xbox One, PC, and even PS5

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So in a nutshell, if you have ever played a Metal Slug game, you've essentially played Mighty Goose. It's basically Metal Slug with anthropomorphic animals. You'll ride vehicles. You'll hear someone yell out the name of the weapons you acquire (MACHINE GUN!!!!!). You'll see and hear LOTS of explosions. You'll have NPCs accompanying you and randomly attacking enemies or dropping weapons for you. You'll run up on enemies and attack them with a melee weapon. You'll play through flying levels. You'll fight enemies that look similar to Metal Slug enemies and attack you the same way. You'll fight huge bosses that take up the screen. And like any good Metal Slug game, you'll likely find yourself laughing a few times at how ridiculous and over the top the game is. Now, while the game occasionally borders on outright plagiarism, it does have it's own personality and brings a few things to the table I've not seen in the old Metal Slug games on the Neo Geo/Arcade

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For one thing, the game isn't quite as hard as the MS games. You have an actual...wait for it...wait for it...HEALTH BAR!!!! Shocking I know. There are health pickups too. This alone makes this game not as insane as Metal Slug. Also, there is a meter you build up by killing enemies. When full, you can activate it with L2 and R2 to activate a super mode where your damage and rate of fire go up, and you become invincible. The game says you can keep it going by killing enemies, but I found that it always runs out eventually. You have a dodge roll that can be done on the ground and the air. You can also shoot downward in mid jump, which suspends you in the air due to the kickback of the weapons you're using I guess. The game has a handy auto fire setting you can activate (I got tired of mashing the shoot button). You have a grenade button like Metal Slug, however you can equip other items to that button. That brings me to the next thing

Before each level you can go to the "armory" and equip various items. You can also equip skills, though you only have a certain number of points relegated to skills, which means you can't equip ALL of them. You can also "equip" a companion, who will follow you into battle. In many levels you'll also encounter NPCs, who will ALSO follow you around and help you. I loved seeing Mighty Goose rolling through enemy territory with his posse of allies

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I should also mention that a lot of the items, skills, and companions are unavailable until you unlock them. These all help balance out the game's difficulty a bit and also allow you to kind of cater the game to your particular play style. Also, there's a character you can contact mid level and buy a weapon or vehicle and he'll bring it to you. You can do this using money that enemies drop, if you have acquired enough by that point in the stage. Interestingly, one time he showed up and gave me a weapon even though I didn't contact him.

The game is still pretty intense though even with all these things there to help you, at least for someone like me who isn't a pro at Run n Guns. I always felt that the Metal Slug games can become a real clusterfuck sometimes where there's so many things happening onscreen that I just can't keep up with it. I felt that way a few times while playing this game. With so much hectic action and explosions It's very easy to not see an enemy or enemy projectile with so much going on and take a hit. Thankfully, the game has checkpoints for when you die. Though there is a level rating and I don't know how much deaths affect the score, but the game does factor it in. I've managed to get an S rank on level 1, two As, a C, and mostly Bs for the rest of the levels. You can replay levels with a level select screen so I will be trying to get more S ranks...which I assume is the highest rank

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The game looks good. It's colorful, and very Metal Slug-ish, given how similar a lot of the enemies are. It doesn't quite have the amazing animation and cartoon like charm of the MS games though, but overall this looks like something I could have seen on a SNES many years. ago. The game does this cool thing some times where the game goes into slow motion, and Mighty Goose's large head comes onto your screen letting out a loud honk. This seems to happen during big explosions, or when you rack up a high combo by killing a large number of enemies in succession. It feels like a cool action movie moment.

The music is pretty decent and really conveys the high energy that an adrenaline pumping game like this should. It sounds like something you'd hear coming from a 90s arcade cabinet, as it should.

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It's pretty funny too as I mentioned before. There are moments in the game that made me smile, as well as some of the trophy icons and trophy descriptions. There's a moment where one character tells Goose he thought he didn't make it, then he remembered that Goose has infinite lives LOL. While fighting one of the bosses with some NPC allies, the boss would periodically squash them with one of its attacks. At first I thought, "Damn, I let my bros die". Then after a few seconds they popped right up again and went back to shooting LOL. Level 2 actually feels like a tribute to Mad Max, which I thought was cool.

There are a few little things that irritated me a bit. It doesn't seem that you can shoot diagonally, which I seem to remember being possible in Metal Slug games. Your melee weapon doesn't feel as strong as the knife in Metal Slug, but maybe that's because whenever I used it was against shield carrying enemies in order to do damage to them. The secondary fire of many of the game's vehicles have limited rounds. Didn't the ones in Metal Slug have infinite ammo? This really caught me off guard the first time I ran out and was wondering why my secondary fire wasn't working. Also, when you crouch, the game bizarrely switches to your default weapon instead of whatever weapon you've picked up. You have to be standing up for a lot of them to work. The game is fairly linear. Metal Slug 3 had all these alternate routes. Mighty Goose is much more straight forward, unless there are secret areas I simply haven't found.

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All in all though, this feels like a very fun arcade game from the 90s and is a nice tribute to Metal Slug, much in the same way Blazing Chrome is an obvious tribute to Contra: Hard Corps. Once you finish it, there is also a "new game plus". It's essentially a hard mode where you replay harder versions of each level, while keeping everything you've unlocked in your first playthrough. The game told me there was a reward for completing these levels. I don't know what it is yet.

If you like Metal Slug, this game is a no brainer. Simple, fun, old school, game you can finish in like an hour

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ElkinFencer10
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

by ElkinFencer10 Tue Jun 08, 2021 11:24 am

Games Beaten in 2021 - 41
* denotes a replay

January (12 Games Beaten)
1. God of War - PlayStation 3 - January 1
2. God of War II - PlayStation 3 - January 2
3. God of War: Chains of Olympus - PlayStation 3 - January 3
4. God of War: Ghost of Sparta - PlayStation 3 - January 4
5. God of War III - PlayStation 4 - January 6
6. God of War: Ascension - PlayStation 3 - January 9
7. God of War [2018] - PlayStation 4 - January 16
8. Epic Dumpster Bear 2: He Who Bears Wins - PlayStation 4 - January 16
9. God of War: Betrayal - Mobile - January 17
10. Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit - Switch - January 18
11. Muv-Luv photonflowers* - Steam - January 22
12. Muv-Luv photonmelodies♮ - Steam - January 27


February (5 Games Beaten)
13. Gun Gun Pixies - Switch - February 1
14. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel - PS4 - February 8*
15. Pantsu Hunter: Back to the 90s - Vita - February 13
16. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II - PS4 - February 17*
17. Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky - Steam - February 23


March (3 Games Beaten)
18. Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky SC - Steam - March 4
19. Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky 3rd - Steam - March 7
20. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III - PS4 - March 21


April (7 Games Beaten)
21. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV - PS4 - April 5
22. Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After 00 - Steam - April 7
23. Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After 01 - Steam - April 10
24. Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After 02 - Steam - April 11
25. Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After 03 - Steam - April 13
26. Neptunia Virtual Stars - PS4 - April 18
27. Before Your Eyes - Steam - April 18


May (9 Games Beaten)
28. New Pokemon Snap - Switch - May 2
29. Resident Evil 8: Village - PS5 - May 8
30. Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Switch - May 15
31. Torment: Tides of Numenera - Xbox One - May 18
32. Pepsiman - PS1 - May 20
33. Super Blackjack Battle II Turbo: The Card Fighters - Switch - May 20
34. Reel Fishing: Road Trip Adventure - Switch - May 23
35. Planetscape: Torment - Steam - May 26
36. Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne - Switch - May 31


June (5 Games Beaten)
37. Hentai vs Evil - Switch - June 1
38. Troll and I - Switch - June 2
39. Zombie Army 4: Dead War - PlayStation 4 - June 5
40. Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 - Switch - June 6
41. Military Madness - TurboGrafx-16 - June 7


41. Military Madness - TurboGrafx-16 - June 7

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Military Madness (or Nectaris in Japan) is a turn based strategy game from Hudson. While it may have gotten ports to early home computers and remakes for later consoles, it's mainly known for its original release on TurboGrafx-16. I first found it when it got added to the Wii Virtual Console back when Napoleon's armies were marching across Europe (or it at least feels that long ago). It was actually my very first Wii Virtual Console download and kickstarted my love of the TurboGrafx-16, so it's got a special place in my heart.

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Military Madness is basically World War II in space. You play as the Allies, and your enemies are the Axis. It's probably not the same Axis, but that's all I could think when I was playing, so my head-canon is that it's space FDR versus space Hitler. Humanity colonized the moon hoping that the moon's plentiful resources (which I don't think it actually has, but I could be mistaken) would solve humanity's resource scarcity issues, but because humanity is stupid, space Hitler annexes space Poland...I mean, the moon....and starts building a superweapon called SAM (Supreme Atomic Missile) to attack Earth. The Allied soldiers who escaped from the Axis and their prisons mount a resistance to stop space Hitler from finishing his superweapon and retake the moon for space FDR. I assume space Churchill, space Stalin, and space Kai-shek are somewhere there, too. Space France doesn't get a place in my head-canon.

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Military Madness is often compared to Advance Wars, and there are some similarities, but there is a super key difference; in Military Madness, you can't produce new units. The only way you can get more units is to capture a factory thereby capturing any units inside. This makes the game much more challenging in my opinion as "hold the line while you produce reinforcements" isn't an option. The game also takes place on a hexagonal grid rather than a square grid. I know a lot of strategy fans prefer working with a hex grid, but I personally much prefer square grids. I guess it's because my strategy roots are Fire Emblem, but I'm not a big fan of the hex.

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There are 32 maps in the game, but you're really "beaten" it after the first 16. The first 16 maps constitute the "Normal" campaign whereas the last 16 maps are the "Advanced" campaign that are the same maps but way harder. As the patron saint of Bitch Mode, I had no interest in playing a much harder version of the campaign I already struggled to finish the second half of. It is, however, a really nice addition for folks who are masochists (it's cool; I don't kink shame) and want a brutal challenge. The game's visuals aren't necessarily the best the TurboGrafx-16 has to offer, but I found the sprites to be very well done nonetheless and never grew tired to seeing them move across the field and engage the enemy. The sound is a bit more middling in my opinion; the background music is nice, but it's the same throughout the game. There are three tracks you'll hear in combat; the normal one that will be playing for most of your playthrough, a more upbeat track that plays when your advantage over the enemy grows overwhelming, and a more ominous track that plays when the enemy's advantage over you grows overwhelming. As for the sound effects, they're fine. They do the job.

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Military Madness is a game that I thoroughly enjoyed, although I'm not sure if I'll ever go back and replay it. It got remake on PS1, and I might play that if I ever want to revisit the maps, but between the starting advantage the AI always seems to have and the rather complex systems I'm too lazy to keep straight, this version will probably be a game that I'll look back on fondly but only ever look *back* on. If you haven't played it, though, it's absolutely worth playing. Unfortunately, with the discontinuation of the Wii Shop Channel, the most accessible way to play it has been closed off to gamers, but if you're able to get your hands on a TurboGrafx-16 Mini, it's included on there (and the save states are a godsend). Regardless of how you play it, I definitely recommend it to fans of strategy games. It may be primitive by modern standards, but it's a lot of fun and definitely worth experiencing at least once.
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

by prfsnl_gmr Tue Jun 08, 2021 3:21 pm

ElkinFencer10 wrote:Military Madness is a game that I thoroughly enjoyed, although I'm not sure if I'll ever go back and replay it. It got remake on PS1, and I might play that if I ever want to revisit the maps, but between the starting advantage the AI always seems to have and the rather complex systems I'm too lazy to keep straight, this version will probably be a game that I'll look back on fondly but only ever look *back* on.


Great review of a fantastic game. I felt the same way when I finished up the first PS1 campaign. Nonetheless, I came back a few months later to beat the second, more difficult campaign. That unlocked the original TG16 campaign; so, of course, I had to play through that, which unlocked the second TG16 campaign...I did stop after that, though. I still look back fondly on the game, and I consider it one of the best strategy games I’ve ever played, even if, like you, I probably enjoy the Advance Wars series more.
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Raging Justice
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

by Raging Justice Wed Jun 09, 2021 3:17 pm

Small update to my post on Mighty Goose, I've finished New Game Plus mode and the reward is totally worth it. So I'd encourage anyone who plays this to finish that second playthrough. I've S ranked all but one annoying level that keeps giving me an A and am close to a Platinum trophy. I really love this game. There are two companions I still haven't unlocked, don't know what the unlock conditions are. Maybe they are hidden in levels?
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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

by prfsnl_gmr Wed Jun 09, 2021 4:21 pm

First 25
1. Horace (Switch)
2. Ghostrunner (Switch)
3. Mickey’s Adventure in Numberland (NES)
4. Mickey’s Safari in Letterland (NES)
5. Castle of Illusion starring Mickey Mouse (Genesis)
6. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Picross (3DS)
7. World of Illusion starring Mickey & Donald (Genesis)
8. Castle of Illusion starring Mickey Mouse (Game Gear)
9. Land of Illusion starring Mickey Mouse (Game Gear)
10. Legend of Illusion starring Mickey Mouse (Game Gear)
11. Portal 2 [co-op] (PS3)
12. Operencia: The Stolen Sun (Switch)
13. The Knight of Queen (Switch)
14. Q.U.B.E. - Director’s Cut (PS3)
15. What the Golf?! (Switch)
16. Prune (iOS)
17. Kenshō (iOS)
18. For the Frog the Bell Tolls (GameBoy)
19. Holedown (iOS)
20. King’s Field (PS1)
21. My Friend Pedro (Switch)
22. MO: Astray (Switch)
23. EQI (Switch)
24. Foxyland (Switch)
25. Carrion (Switch)

26. QUBE 2 (Switch)
27. Aaero (Switch)
28. Portal 2 (PS3)
29. Alwa’s Awakening (Switch)
30. Alwa’s Legacy (Switch)

Whereas Alwa’s Awakening was a challenging, unique, pseudo-8-bit, open-world, 2D action-platformer (a/k/a a “metroidvania” game), it’s sequel, Alwa’s Legacy, is a much more traditional example of the genre. It is, however, an exceptionally good example that I heartily recommend to everyone.

First, the game is actually non-linear. It doesn’t just require you to backtrack while keeping you, basically, on a set path, like so many games in the genre. Rather, it gives you a goal, and lets you accomplish it in any way you please. Certainly, there’s a path that’s a bit easier, but one you have acquired two abilities (the block and the bubble, both seen previously in Alwa’s Awakening) just outside what is ostensibly the games first dungeon, you can go just about anywhere in the game, acquiring other abilities, or not, as you please.

Second, the abilities you acquire throughout the game are all actually useful. In addition to letting you reach other optional sections and upgrades, they make traversing the game’s world easier, enhance you combat abilities, etc., and you will use them throughout the game’s world once you acquire them, as opposed to using them just to overcome a few specific obstacles.

Finally, the game is crammed with content and secrets. It seems like there is always something new to find, and finding many of the optional upgrades requires you to use your abilities in really creative ways.

The best games in the metroidvania genre allows players to approach the game in multiple ways and reward thorough exploration with abilities and upgrades that function as more than just “keys” to the next section of the game. They are also challenging, fun, and intricately designed. Alwa’s Legacy is all of those things. Moreover, it has beautiful, colorful, pseudo 16-bit graphics seemingly inspired by the TG16’s most appealing titles. Catchy music, great sound effects, solid QOL features, and fun boss battles are just icing on the cake.

Like Alwa’s Awakening, the game’s ending is a bit of a letdown, and the game never resolves its narrative mysteries. That’s OK, though, since these games are all about the journey, and the destination is ultimately irrelevant (which, in retrospect, may be what the game’s trying to say).

The game is an outstanding standalone experience, and there is no need to play Alwa’s Awakening before playing Alwa’s Legacy. Playing them back-to-back was spectacular, however, and I really can’t recommend these two games highly enough.
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BoneSnapDeez
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

by BoneSnapDeez Wed Jun 09, 2021 5:03 pm

I had no idea there was a sequel!
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Games Beaten 2021

by PartridgeSenpai Fri Jun 11, 2021 3:42 am

Partridge Senpai's 2021 Beaten Games:
Previously: 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
* indicates a repeat

Games 1~51
1. Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland (PS3)
2. Portal 2 (PC) *
3. Atelier Judie: The Alchemist of Gramnad (PS2)
4. Pipo Saru 2001 (PS2)
5. Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon (N64)
6. Atelier Viorate: The Alchemist of Gramnad 2 (PS2)
7. Kirby's Dream Land 3 (SFC)
8. The Legend of Mystical Ninja (SFC)
9. Atelier Marie: The Alchemist of Salburg (PS1)
10. Ganbare Goemon 2 (SFC)
11. Paper Mario: Origami King (Switch)
12. Star Fox 64 (N64) *
13. Super Paper Mario (Wii) *
14. Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door (GC) *
15. Demon's Crest (SNES)
16. Cathedral (Switch)
17. Super Mario 3D World (Switch) *
18. Bowser's Fury (Switch)
19. Rogue Heroes: Ruins of Tasos (Switch)
20. moon (Switch)
21. Casltevania 64 (N64)
22. Captain Rainbow (Wii)
23. Doraemon: Nobita To Mittsu No Seireiseki (N64)
24. Blast Corps (N64)
25. Doraemon 2: Nobita To Hikari No Shinden (N64)
26. Custom Robo (N64)
27. Doraemon 3: Nobita No Machi SOS! (N64)
28. 64 Trump Collection: Alice No Wakuwaku Trump World (N64)
29. The Sunken City (PS4)
30. Lair of the Clockwork God (Switch)
31. Star Fox Adventures (GC)
32. Atelier Elie: The Alchemist of Salburg 2 (PS1)
33. Billy Hatcher & The Giant Egg (GC)
34. Mole Mania (GB)
35. Gargoyle's Quest (GB)
36. Rock Man 4 (Famicom) *
37. Wai Wai World (Famicom)
38. Mega Man: Dr. Wily's Revenge (GB)
39. Mega Man (Switch) *
40. Mega Man 2 (Switch) *
41. Mega Man 3 (Switch) *
42. Rock Man 5 (Famicom) *
43. Mega Man 6 (Switch)
44. Mega Man 7 (Switch) *
45. Mega Man 8 (Switch) *
46. Mega Man 9 (Switch) *
47. Mega Man 10 (Switch)
48. Rock Man World 2 (GB) *
49. Rock Man World 3 (GB)
50. Rock Man World 4 (GB)
51. Rock Man World 5 (GB)

52. Wai Wai World 2 (Famicom)
53. Tiny Toon Adventures (Famicom)
54. King Kong 2: Ikari No Megaton Punch (Famicom)
55. Yume Pengin Monogatari (Famicom)
56. Rock Man & Forte (SFC)
57. Rock Man X2 (Switch)
58. Rock Man X3 (Switch)
59. Rock Man X4 (Switch)
60. Rock Man X5 (Switch)
61. Rock Man X6 (Switch)
62. Rock Man X7 (Switch)
63. Rock Man X8 (Switch)
64. Mega Man: Powered Up (PSP)
65. Magical Taruruuto Kun: FANTASTIC WORLD!! (Famicom)
66. Maken Shao (PS2)
67. Getsu Fuuma Den (Famicom)
68. Rock Man D.A.S.H (PSP)
69. Brave Fencer Musashi (PS1)
70. Joe & Mac (SFC) *

71. Atelier Lilie: The Alchemist of Salburg 3 (PS2)

So ends my journey not only of playing through the Salburg Atelier games but also all five of the main series of Atelier games that never were released in English. I may've done it in a weird order (4, 5, 1, 2, 3), but it offered a very cool perspective on just how the series had changed and when. This is the final adventure in the main series in Salburg, and it had some big shoes to fill after how good Atelier Elie was, and it overall did a pretty darn solid job of filling them! This is yet another game that actually doesn't record in-game time in any way, so I just gotta reckon that it took me some 40 odd hours of playtime over the course of a week to beat the Japanese version of the game with the best ending on the original hardware (using guides online a lot to know what to do and when ^^;).

Despite what the title implies, this is actually a prequel to the other two Atelier games in the Salburg series. It follows the titular character Lilie, an alchemist who has just come with her mentor Dorunie and their two students Helmina and Ingrid to try and establish an alchemy academy in Salburg (the very same academy that Marie and Elie would go on to attend). There are a colorful cast of characters you can recruit in your party, from Karin the tomboyish blacksmith to Gerhard the weapons dealer, and oodles of quests and events involving them you can engage with for more story and goodies.

This character writing especially is definitely where this game shines above its predecessors. In prior Atelier games, side quests and more miscellaneous events usually involved just that character and the titular alchemist or perhaps one or two other characters with whom that character was a sort of dedicated pair with (like how your fellow alchemy students would almost always have events relating to one another in Atelier Elie). in Atelier Lilie, the city feels much more alive in how the characters all seem to know each other and interact with each other from time to time in event to event. It takes the good dialogue writing that's been a consistent strength of the series and puts it to some real work in fleshing out the relationships of people with one another and with their new alchemy-obsessed neighbors (that being you).

With Lilie and her fellow alchemists being immigrants to Salburg, there's a strong general theme of acceptance of others. Atelier Lilie is a larger story about how we're not all so different if we're just willing to be kind to one another and not judge based on prejudices. It can come off as a little cheesy at times, but in the current state of the world, it was an optimistic story that I was more than happy to throw myself into.

It also continues and expands the trend that Atelier Elie started with having some endings be related to romancing certain male characters, of which there are many more this time. I actually couldn't really engage with this system, as I messed up a choice RIGHT at the start (you can basically pick if you want romance to be an option or not, and I didn't really realize what a final choice that was and picked that I didn't XP), but the male characters themselves are much more appealingly written than they were in Atelier Elie, for sure (with Gerhard being my favorite ^w^). Lilie also is clearly at least somewhat curious about her more attractive female companions (given the more-than-friendly descriptions of them she gives them and conversations she has with them at times), but there's no actual same-sex relationships in the game. That said, unfortunate as it may be, as much as I love the generally asexually-coded nature of the protagonists in these games, Lilie is actually a compellingly written character in regards to her sexuality, and it was an element of her character I really enjoyed~.

The main core of the gameplay isn't that dissimilar from the prior two Atelier games, but it is the last in this style of item management. Once again you can't walk around the wilderness to explore and simply "find" items at a location you travel to. Once again items do not have unique properties between themselves, and one Tar Fruit is exactly as good as any other Tar Fruit. Expiration dates on items also aren't a thing yet. You're also still doing requests (another long-running series staple) at the bar in town to earn money and popularity, with even a new kind of quest in addition to the specific and general category-requests you'd gotten before, where you fulfill a request monthly for a period for a big payout at the end. They have made it a little bit harder to do the general category requests than it was in Elie (you no longer have the bartender's happier or angrier facial expressions as a guide for how suited what you're trying to sell is), but overall it's very much a "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" approach to things.

The way alchemy is done also more or less follows these lines, but with some new twists. You still have combining ingredients to make items with a certain degree of success based on your alchemy level. Also still present from Atelier Elie is the system of blended synthesis, where you tweak the ratios of one ingredient to another to try and make the best version of that item you possibly can (if you so desire). The new addition here is that "original synthesis" (making something totally from scratch given only vague hints) has been nixed for "rough synthesis", where you swap items into other recipes (like one type of metal instead of the one listed in the recipe book) to try and make new items. It isn't a system I super dislike, and it also isn't one you necessarily need to engage with a ton, but there are a LOT of items only available through rough synthesis (compared to how few were available through original synthesis), and you'll need to interact with this system a lot if you want to see the game's best ending.

Part of my frustration with things like that is down to how poorly made and inconsistent in accuracy the guides online for this game are, but part of it is also down to just how strange and arbitrary the game is about certain things. For starters, having percentage-based synthesis successes just isn't a good system to base EVERYTHING around, especially when you often have a -20% (so max 80% success rate) penalty for the atelier being dirty, which it often is, and you can't actually effectively clean it yourself. You need to wait for the cleaning fairy to come around and pay him to do it. That was a cute mechanic back when the atelier's cleanliness was just an aesthetic feature, but it's actively a pretty annoying burden in Lilie, and it leads to a LOT of save/loading to undo very costly failures.

This also extends into the rough and blend synthesis. A main element of the game is the annual tradesmen exhibitions at the castle. You and your gang are committed to convincing the alchemy-illiterate nobility that your academy (and alchemy in general) is something worth investing in both monetarily and socially, so winning these competitions is a key way to get funding for your academy if you don't wanna get that 150,000 gold yourself (that being the general end-state of the game, outside of a few others). It really behooves you to do well in these, for both money and story reasons, and so you end up spending a LOT of time messing around trying to perfect the recipe you're going to submit that year (and that's if the item you're trying to perfect even CAN be made well enough to win the contest). The poor signposting around what is even eligible for which theme of submission each year (until the day of submission) is one really annoying thing, and the difficulty in perfecting the blend synthesis AND the failures that things like poor cleanliness cause are a consistent annoyance the game faces.

The general weirdness and frustration of play also extends to story events. Unlike in prior games, there are a lot more events that correspond to specific flags you need to trigger while playing, but even with those flags hit, whether or not the event actually spawns seems to be down to an internal RNG that the player just needs to hope lands in their favor. Over a LOT of save/loading to perfect certain things and make the most efficient use of my time, I also experienced a lot of confusion over just how and why certain events would happen in some saves and not in others when I'd done effectively the exact same thing in each. There's no cross-continental journey between you and the best ending like in Atelier Elie, so that's one thing, but the events are generally really sweet and well-written, and are some of the biggest highlights of the game, so the difficulty with which they're accessed is a really sour yet necessary note to end talking about this part of the game with.

The presentation is excellent as Gust had always done. The music is once again fresh feeling remixes of old tracks (such as the ever iconic Salburg workshop theme) as well as great new ones too. The game's art style is refined just a bit more from Elie, and it still looks great. Character designs are iconic and colorful in a very appealing way, and the whole game has a very homey experience to it.

Verdict: Highly Recommended. As much as certain elements of the game frustrate me, they're elements that mostly only frustrate in the context of trying to get the best ending(s). Overall, Atelier Lilie is a great further refinement of the formula that was innovated upon with Atelier Elie, and is just as worth playing as that game. Upon reflection, seeing JUST how different this game and Atelier Judie are makes me want to apologize to Judie a bit. Sure, I'm still not a huge fan of the writing or a lot of the design in that game, but seeing firsthand JUST how ambitious that game was in changing things makes me respect it a lot more, despite how badly it fumbles things. Lilie is a wonderful capstone on the Salburg trilogy, and definitely should not be passed up if you enjoyed Atelier Marie or Atelier Elie~.
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