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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Exhuminator Thu Mar 01, 2018 1:24 am

Sarge wrote:Anyway, I got a little bit of a head start on next month's Together Retro

Oh lawdy it's that time already? BRB makin' a thread
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Stark Thu Mar 01, 2018 11:58 am

1. Virginia - XB1

2. The Beginner's Guide - PC

The Beginner's Guide is probably best described as a interactive, fictional, documentary. The conceit is that Davey Wreden, developer of The Stanley Parable, has a collection of developed games or concepts from a friend named Coda, which have never been released for public consumption. Davey walks you through these works in chronological order of when they were developed and tries to give insight and context to what Coda was trying to say with the works. It is a commentary on what some creators go through in creating and all of the trials and tribulations that come with success (such as what Wreden had with The Stanley Parable.) I found it absolutely fascinating, especially as a companion piece to The Stanley Parable. Coda in music means the concluding passage of a piece or movement and I feel that this is completely fitting, because to me it seems clear that The Stanley Parable and The Beginner's Guide are meant to be taken in together. It's relatively short, but I found it compelling from start to finish.

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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Ack Thu Mar 01, 2018 5:21 pm

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

8. Golden Axe (Genesis)(Hack and Slash)

With the new TR theme now looming, I wanted to go and get a head start by tackling a classic of the hack and slash variety. Golden Axe has a sword and sorcery appeal that I greatly appreciate, and there is a lot to its world that I adore. I've played it a few times but never sat down and beaten it; shoot, I've spent more time with Golden Axe: The Duel than I have with the rest of the series combined. I decided now was a good time to rectify this oversight. Since March's TR is about 1980s video games featuring female protagonists, I decided I'd sit down and knock out the game with the female character, Tyris Flare.

Unfortunately, Golden Axe shows its age. Hey, it predates Final Fight, so I wasn't expecting it to be the same early '90s fare I was accustomed to, and this proved true. While many of the key elements are present (running attacks, throws, combos, a special attack system), they're clunky and not always well-implemented. As an example, throwing an enemy into another does absolutely nothing, despite his buddy flying into his face. There also isn't a lot of variety of enemies, with only a handful of palette swaps for fodder and even bosses being recolored sprites. And just about everything has similar AI: crowd the player, run and jump if you're ever on the same plane, and do nothing to avoid walking off a cliff. Once you've seen one type of enemy, you've just about seen them all, they just get tougher and hit harder.

This isn't always true, mind you; the bosses have a little variation, particularly the final boss who likes to combo magic spells together. There is also a magic system in the game which allows you to gather up potions, build up power, and then release a devastating spell...once. On your regular playthrough, you'll use your entire supply every time, so save up and devastate a boss with it.

Well, that's it for my criticism. Now comes the stuff I like. One: there is a magic system at all, and it feels damn satisfying to bust out the higher-level spells, some of which are massive and hit HARD. Two: to get magic, you have to beat up little thieves, including some that come into your camp at night to try and steal whatever magic you have left over. This system is both interesting from a story perspective (thieves attack the sleeping party. It feels like some of the D&D campaigns I've been in) and provide a nice means of obtaining magic in a pseudo-bonus level between main stages. And then there is the stage design, which while also limited since it's 1989 here, includes things like fleeing villagers, pits and ledges, skeletons that come out of the ground, and so on. One level mentions riding a giant eagle to a castle, and then you start the next fight on the back of a GIANT eagle. That's bad ass. And then there are several different mounts that you can take from the enemies, and by take I mean "kill your opponent and then use their ride to slaughter everyone else." If you're good with fighting on one of these guys, some levels become cakewalks. I recommend you get good with them.

There are also several features on the Genesis port of Golden Axe that are great. The first is a training level that makes things easier than normal but lets you get an understanding of the basics. The second is a 2-player versus mode. Well done, SEGA. These were some great ideas for improvements.

Look, I think Golden Axe is a mixed bag for a lot of reasons, but it was a great title at the time, and the series is a fun one to check least through the mid-90s. Golden Axe II takes my complaints and then baseball swings an ax into them so hard, they fly out a castle window and into the moat below, where they get eaten by a horde of skeleton knights out of boredom, because they're, you know, stuck in a moat. Somebody get them out of there, or toss them a Game Boy or something. Those skeletons need help. Anyway, yeah, check out Golden Axe. And check out Golden Axe II even though it doesn't count towards this TR.


Also, this is one of those games where chainmail bikinis and loincloths provide the best protection.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by alienjesus Thu Mar 01, 2018 6:11 pm

Another addition to the Mega Drive port of Golden Axe is the entire last 2 levels - the arcade version ended once you saved the king and the princess.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by prfsnl_gmr Thu Mar 01, 2018 7:02 pm

Also, the music is awesome. Never fails to get me totally pumped.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by dsheinem Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:13 pm

Golden Axe is the Genesis game that I go back to most often...nothing stokes the nostalgia feels in quite the same way for me.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Exhuminator Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:32 pm

prfsnl_gmr wrote:Also, the music is awesome. Never fails to get me totally pumped.

dsheinem wrote:Golden Axe is the Genesis game that I go back to most often...nothing stokes the nostalgia feels in quite the same way for me.

Finally, some good taste.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by pook99 Fri Mar 02, 2018 1:50 pm

56. Momodora: reverie under moonlight (steam)
57. Aladdin (genesis)
58. Kick ass commandos (steam)
59. Carnage in space: ignition (steam)
60. Death and return of superman (snes)
61. Save Dash (steam)

56. Momodoara: Reverie under moonlight:

Kick ass metroidvania with beautiful graphics, amazing controls, soothing soundtrack, super fun combat and exploration, and a really steep difficulty curve. This is the 4th game in the series, the first 2 are freeware, the 3rd is on steam. All 3 of them are solid games but this game blows them away. You don't need to play any of the first 3 games to enjoy this one and fans of challenging metroidvanias need to pick this game up.

57. Aladin--a group of friends visited me over the weekend and one of them was talking about how much she loved to play aladin on genesis as a kid. I haven't really thought about the game in years but I loaded it up for her, and she was embarassed for her lack of skills and handed me the controller. I played this game for the first time in college when I was managing Funcoland and I forgot what a great game it was. Now I just need to go back and play the snes one and see which version I prefer.

58. Kick ass commandos: very run of the mill twin stick shooter, not a bad game, but there are definitely better twin sticks out there. If you are in the mood for a twin stick and see it on sale it might be worth it, the asking price of 10 bucks is way too high though.

59. Carnage in space: ignition Carnage in space is an old school sidescroller that would have felt right at home on a snes or genesis.

You play an an operative sent to help a settlement in an ongoing war. There is a story here with a few twists and turns that is told through cutscenes. Every level begins and ends with a cutscene so they don't get in the way of the action and they are skippable if you don't want to hear the story.

Gameplay is broken up into 9 levels. Level variety is excellent and each level has optional objectives that you can complete in order to receive a higher rank. The optional objectives are fun and varied, some are easy to complete, some are difficult but none are necessary in order to progress. The difficulty of this game is just about right. Completing the levels without finishing the optional objectives should be easy enough, but some of the optional objectives are tricky and will require a few playthroughs to master.

Each level ends in a boss fight, the boss fights are well done, the majority of them are challenging without being cheap. Of course the first few are simple, but then you really need to learn the patterns in order to beat them.

The control in this game is great, you get a jump, dash, melee, and ranged attack. All the movements are fast and fluid, your character is really fun to control, and there is a wide variety of different weapons and abilities to unlock. These unlockables are the biggest negative in the game for me. Most upgrades are somewhere between 30-80 dollars, and the amount of money you acrue in a level is nowhere near enough to be able to afford them. At the end of the level I would typically have less than 5 dollars, then you get a bonus for beating the level. The bonus is small and if you die in the level it is even smaller, many times my bonus would be a few dollars extra. By the time I had completed the game I only had enough money to purchase 2 items. There are tons of cool weapons in this game but the system for unlocking them is really bad and gets in the way of an otherwise cool feature.

Overall, this game is a great game for retro action platformer fans and is well worth the 5 dollar asking price.

60. Death and return of superman: Really fun beat em up, I never played it before and I'm glad I finally got around to it. It's not going to take the throne from streets of rage/final fight/double dragon, but it is a solid title with a few tweaks into the standard beat em up formula.

61. Save Dash: Great runner game, probably my favorite one outside of the bit.trip series.

Controls are simple, you have one button to jump and that is it, there is no verying heights, no slide, no other moves but jump, the only variance is that you can hold the jump button to keep jumping as soon as you land.

The game is divided into 18 levels, the first few are really easy and than the game gets insanely hard a little more than halfway through and continuosly ramps up the difficulty on each level. There are a ton of different obstacles and as the game progresses the loadout of the obstacles gets progressively crazier and crazier.

There is a progress meter on the bottom of the screen that shows how close you are to beating the level and respawns are lightning fast, these 2 things give this game that addicting, "just one more time" feel that is necessary for games like this. I died a ton on the later levels but finally completing a really tricky series of jumps after dying 40 times on it is immensely satisfying.

The game took me about 2 hours to complete. Each level also has 3 stars that you can try and collect as you play through as well as 2 unlockable extra difficulty levels for each level, I am nowhere near good enough to even think of attempting them but if you are into it I would imagine that trying to unlock and playthrough these extra modes would add a good amount of time to your playthrough,

Purchasing this game is a no-brainer, it is 3 dollars, has precise controls(including controller support), and offers a really addicting and challenging experience.

dsheinem wrote:Golden Axe is the Genesis game that I go back to most often...nothing stokes the nostalgia feels in quite the same way for me.

Streets of rage 2 is my go to genesis game but golden axe is right below the streets of rage trilogy for me.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by ESauced Fri Mar 02, 2018 3:06 pm

Beat Uncharted: Golden Abyss last night. I found it a bit diapointing. Uncharted is one of my favorite series and I didn’t expect this to stand up to the bar set by the PS3 games, but I did expect to find that even a weak Uncharted would be a great game; instead a found that a very weak Uncharted is an okay game.

The pros:
-The voice acting is still superb and they kept the original voice actors for the main characters.
-The dynamic between Nathan and Sully is great and I loved their exchanges.
-The gunplay is fun once you get a handle on using the small PS Vita analog sticks.

The cons:
-The writing isn’t as great as the rest of the series. I couldn’t say specifically if the story is weaker or the dialog is worse, just that it wasn’t as intriguing. Also one thing that really stood out to me is that they show how evil the bad guy is by showing him push one of his own men off a high ledge to his death (typical bad guy stuff). Well, the gravity of that is kind of lost when literally just after the cutscene they set it up so you can sneak up behind a bad guy and push him off a cliff! There were a few instances of the writing just feeling sloppy like this.
- The touch and motion controls. Honestly this is the biggest problem with the game. Even some early DS games didn’t have as many forced touchscreen moments. Spoiler below for long rant.

Climbing with the touchscreen wasn’t a bad idea. Honestly it was nice to trace a path with my finger and be able to pick my nose while Nathan climbed. But forcing me to lean the system to make him lean to cross gaps was ridiculous. And having little quick time events during climbing that require touching the screen is incredibly annoying if you opted to use standard controls to climb. They did the same thing in combat and it’s equally annoying. There’s nothing worse than dying because you fumbled with trying to move your hands off the buttons and onto the screen on time.

And constant inconsequential moments required using the touchscreen. Lifting a box, swipe the touchscreen. Opening a door swipe the touchscreen, three times because it’s heavy. Rowing the canoe, swipe the touchscreen, again and again and again. Awful.

Touch screen puzzles would have been a fine idea if they were actually puzzles. But doing a charcoal rubbing is just a waste of time, as is connecting puzzle pieces that are simple enough that a child would find them boring.

My least favorite thing of all though was leaning the system to catch Nathan’s balance over narrow bridges. Every time I crossed a bridge or a log I was praying he wouldn’t lose his balance and force me into this stupid balancing mini game.

I genuinely enjoyed a lot of the game, but the touchscreen and motion controls are so overdone that it nearly ruined a good game. Never did I once consider putting down an Uncharted game before but I really had to weigh whether I felt like sticking with this one. With how frequently touch and motion controls came up to annoy me, it probably took what would have been a B+ game and made it a C-.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Exhuminator Fri Mar 02, 2018 4:40 pm

ESauced wrote:took what would have been a B+ game and made it a C-.

I've also beaten Golden Abyss, and I agree it's a C (or 6.5/10) experience. The only other Uncharted I've beaten is the first one on PS3, which was a 7/10 for me. Based on those two experiences, I don't see what the big deal about Uncharted is. I guess Uncharted 2 must be really amazing, I don't know. I'll play it someday.
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