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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by ElkinFencer10 Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:27 am

dsheinem wrote:War of the Monsters -PS2 *new*

Dude. I LOVE this game. I spent literally hundreds of hours in middle school and high school playing this game with one of my friends in the mountains while listening to Linkin Park's first two studio albums on repeat. No fighting game as memories as fond for me as this one.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by marurun Wed Mar 07, 2018 11:04 am

ElkinFencer10 wrote:while listening to Linkin Park's first two studio albums on repeat

I am so sorry to hear about this dark time in your life. I hope you have managed to recover and finally embrace daylight again.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by dsheinem Wed Mar 07, 2018 11:05 am

ElkinFencer10 wrote:
dsheinem wrote:War of the Monsters -PS2 *new*

Dude. I LOVE this game. I spent literally hundreds of hours in middle school and high school playing this game with one of my friends in the mountains while listening to Linkin Park's first two studio albums on repeat. No fighting game as memories as fond for me as this one.

Awesome! I played through the campaign as Togera. Good choice?
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by ElkinFencer10 Wed Mar 07, 2018 12:12 pm

dsheinem wrote:Awesome! I played through the campaign as Togera. Good choice?

Yeah man, he's my second favorite. My favorite is Ultra-V, although Magmo is a close #3 to Togera.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by MrPopo Thu Mar 08, 2018 2:54 am

1. Ultima V - PC
2. Ultima VI - PC
3. Might and Magic VI - PC
4. Realms of Arkania: Blade of Destiny - PC
5. Pool of Radiance - PC
6. Curse of the Azure Bonds - PC
7. Secret of the Silver Blades - PC
8. Pools of Darkness - PC
9. Gateway to the Savage Frontier - PC
10. Treasures of the Savage Frontier - PC
11. Champions of Krynn - PC
12. Death Knights of Krynn - PC
13. Dark Queen of Krynn - PC
14. Into the Breach - PC

From the makers of FTL comes a strategy puzzle game that is just as addictive, if not moreso, than FTL. The basic premise of the game is that a horde of alien locusts called the Vek have invaded Earth and overrun it. In desperation, they take a page from Terminator to send back one elite pilot to try and do a better job in the next timeline. This is where things pick up. You need to lead your squad of three mechs to fight back against the Vek and destroy their hive before they breed sufficient numbers to overwhelm humanity.

You start the game with access to one squad, which is an all rounder squad. As you progress you unlock more squads, each specialized in a different form of combat. Just like FTL and its different ships, playing different squads requires you to approach things in a different way, and it helps keep things fresh. You also have the option of picking a random squad (with it either being vaguely balanced or completely random) or creating a custom squad. You'll need to do all of these if you want to hunt the achievements and unlock all the squads (including the secret squad for getting every achievement).

The basic gameplay is that you drop onto a small grid map and you need to survive four turns. The Vek will try to either trash your mechs or attack buildings; when destroyed these buildings reduce your power level. When your power reaches zero then the machine that is keeping the Vek in check fails and you get swarmed; game over. Each map also has one or more sub objectives; these give you resources when completed (either extra power or currency to upgrade your squad at the end of an island). The game is divided into four islands, and you can trigger the end game sequence after doing just two of them. Going further gives you more rewards but also makes the enemies harder, so there's a risk reward to it.

Now, the turn-by-turn combat is where this game really gets interesting. When the enemy takes its turn it moves all of its units around and then sets up its attacks. You then are given the opportunity to respond; once you end turn the enemy attacks will go off. You have several options of what to do; the most basic is to kill enemies by dealing enough damage. But this game is heavily based on movement and positioning. If you shove a Vek their attack will stay aimed at the same relative square, which means you can do things like have them attack an empty square, or another Vek. Non-boss walking Vek can't swim, so you can push them into the drink for a free kill. If one unit is pushed into another then both units take damage; same if you push one unit into a structure or mountain. If a unit is standing on top of a hole that more Vek will burrow out of next turn the reinforcement is blocked and the blocking unit takes damage. And finally, there are frequently environmental effects that you can lure enemies into which take effect at the start of the turn. All of this is where the game starts to approach more of a puzzle scenario, rather than a straight combat strategy. You want to think about how you sequence your moves and how you can set things up so that when the enemies take their turn they do as little damage as possible.

Of course, you will fail now and again. If you game over you are given the option to send one of your pilots back in time to try again. This pilot will keep all of their experience, which gives you a leg up on the next run. It's never anything game breaking, as each pilot still has their signature skill available from the start. But it's nice to jump start with an extra point of energy available for your weapon upgrades or some extra movement. You also have the option of bailing out of a timeline early, say, if you realize that you have no way of avoiding having your best pilot killed next turn (if a mech is downed the pilot is killed and AI will take it over next map; AI doesn't get skills).

A run takes between half an hour to an hour, depending on how many islands you do. And it's rare that a run dies super early; generally you'll have at least one island under your belt before you get overwhelmed and lose power to your grid. So the game makes for quick bits of play here and there, and the various squads ad a lot of variety. It's quite addictive, and I still have to do a run with the secret squad tomorrow.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by BoneSnapDeez Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:45 pm

1. Antarctic Adventure (Famicom)
2. Nuts & Milk (Famicom)
3. Commando (Atari 2600)
4. Binary Land (Famicom)
5. Devil World (Famicom)
6. Disney's Aladdin (SNES)
7. Popeye (NES)
8. Super Mario Land (Game Boy)
9. Ys: The Vanished Omens (Sega Master System)
10 Ys II: Ancient Ys Vanished - The Final Chapter (Famicom)
11. Final Fantasy Mystic Quest (SNES)
12. Lunar: The Silver Star (Sega CD)
13. Otenba Becky no Daibouken (MSX)

Otenba Becky no Daibouken (hilariously translated as Tomboyish Becky's Large Adventure) is an obscure MSX exclusive, released back in 1983. The developer, MIA, seems to have developed for the MSX exclusively, and apparently ceased production after 1984. Becky is notable for being one of the earliest Japanese games to feature a female protagonist. While I lack the instruction booklet, I've been able to find a plot synopsis online: twelve-year-old Becky sneaks into a mansion and while running about she manages to irritate the malicious space aliens that inhabit it. I hate it when that happens.
The game is a scaffolded "ladder" platformer, but Becky can't jump. She defeats enemies by trapping them in holes she digs along the pathways. Sound familiar? Comparisons to Lode Runner may immediately jump to mind, but in actuality Becky is clearly aping Universal's Space Panic, an unheralded 1980 arcade title that is often credited with being the first of its genre.

Stages are single-screen, with a seemingly random ladder layout presented each time. Unfortunately, no layout is inherently more or less interesting or challenging than another, and all can be viewed within a few play sessions. Only the arrow keys and space bar are used, with the space bar assigned to digging. Becky differs from Space Panic (and Lode Runner, for that matter) when it comes to said digging. While the heroes of the aforementioned classics can dig holes to either side of whereupon they stand, Becky isn't especially bright and instead digs a hole directly below her feet, dropping her to the floor below. This adds an additional element to the gameplay, the element of annoyance. Once an enemy is trapped in a hole (suspended, really) Becky must make her way back up to where the enemy rests and walk over it. If she can't do this within an allotted time frame, the enemy regains composure. Foes that have been trampled by the Beckz drop down and transform into apples. When she's had her fill of produce, the mischievous middle-schooler moves ahead to the next stage.
After a few boards are completed there's no reason to continue playing. There's no "end" in sight as far as I can tell, and while the level counter likely rolls over after 99 every possible stage and enemy configuration is seen well before that happens. Graphics are strictly utilitarian, and the "soundtrack" is a single annoyingly chirpy tune looping endlessly. Enemy sprites look and move like utter garbage. Classic MSX choppiness. To make matters worse, enemy sprites often overlap each other, and oftentimes when I thought I was taking out a single enemy another one popped out from behind it.

With its hidden villains and janky "drop down" mechanic, Otenba Becky no Daibouken is utterly unimpressive. While not a horrendous title by any stretch, it fails to stand out among the burgeoning early-80s platforming scene. As a fan of ancient Japanese obscurities, I managed to get a couple of chuckles out of the Becky experience, but was ultimately left wishing I was playing the game's more illustrious mentor instead.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by Flake Fri Mar 09, 2018 10:01 am


Yakuza Kiwami (PS4)
Batman: The Telltale Series (PS4)
Super Mario Odyssey (Switch)
Mario vs Donkey Kong: Minis March Again (DSi ware)


Roundabout (PS4)
Pocket Fighter (PSX)
Double Dragon Neon (PS3)
Batman Arkham VR(PSVR)


Dynasty Warriors Gundam Reborn (PS4)

Dynasty Warriors Gundam Reborn has been sitting on my PS3's harddrive, unplayed, for a very long time now. I was initially discouraged by the superficial differences between it and DW Gundam 3 like the shift away from cel shading, the somewhat smaller models to achieve larger on screen character counts, the UI, etc.

What was I thinking? Elkin and I tackled this game in parallel and that provided me with extra motivation to focus on it and I am glad I did. This game is much more akin to Hyrule Warriors than the older style DW games. The difficulty across most levels is lowered, the size of the environments is smaller, and the model count is increased dramatically. The end result is a power fantasy where you ravage thousands of enemies in a minute, constantly unlocking new items and upgrades, and revel in constant explosions. It's a great stress reliever.

The music is, again, not the licensed sound track from the actual shows but it still very good. There is also an ton of content so even though I have 'beat' it, I am not done with it.

Bayonetta (Switch)

Bayonetta for the Switch is a lot of fun. I had previously purchased it on the WiiU but the load times killed the experience for me. On Switch, the game loads quickly (almost seamlessly within levels) and there is next to no slow down. Whereas the WiiU release was a step above the original Xbox360, so to is the Switch version over the WiiU.

As for the game itself, I enjoyed the fuck out of the setting. I also liked how unapologetically sexual and female the protagonist is. It is a great change of pace to have a female lead that is not asking for any fucking help from anyone and I wish that more game designers could achieve this same balance.

Also - thank god Easy mode is a thing on this game. I was able to make it until the last two chapters on Normal but everything went all teacup on me at the end. I am sure high level players can make this game into an artform but I was struggling to get by at some points. It never felt unfair though - another sign of good game design.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by pook99 Fri Mar 09, 2018 9:19 pm

67. castlevania: dawn of sorrow (ds)
68. Wendy: every witch way (gbc)
69. Kid tripp (switch)
70. Lost Castle (steam)

67. I have been meaning to play some of the metroidvanias I missed for a long time and I started here, I never played aria of sorrow so and I did not realize this game was a direct sequel to that, I should have played aria first but ultimately it does not make that much of a difference. If you have played any of the metroidvanias you know what to expect here, I absolutely loved the game, my only gripe was the obligatory touch screen segments. In this game when you beat a boss a sigil appears on screen and you need to draw a pattern in order to finish the boss, mess up and the boss regains some health and the battle continues. There are 5 designs you need to draw and I am just an absolutely terrible artist and struggle to draw even a straight line. The later patterns are big and criss crossey and gave me a great deal of trouble. It added a layer of frustration to the game that did not need to be there. This probably would not be too much of a problem for most normal people, but it really messed with me.

68. Wendy: Horrendously slow, boring, and easy platformer. I was drawn to the game because it has a flip mechanic that lets you switch back and forth from the floor to the ceiling, it sounded cool in theory, and there were a few instances where it was used in a creative way, but for the most part this game was just way to slow moving and easy to be enjoyable.

69. Kid Tripp: a runner game that ratchets up the difficulty to insane levels towards the end of the game. There are 4 worlds with 5 levels each. The first few are relatively easy but in world 3 the difficulty ramps up and continues to skyrocket into world 4.

Like most games of this kind your character auto moves through the level and you have 2 buttons, jump and attack. Your jump height/length varies depending on how you hit the button. This game also has 2 walking speeds, you start out walking but by tapping forward on the d pad you switch to running, by tapping backwards you go back to walking mode. This is never explained and then you make it to world 4-2 where you need to run in order to beat the level and get completely stuck until you stumble upon the mechanic by accident.

That is the biggest flaw in the game, the mechanics are never explained and you don't need to use them until the last world. If I knew that from the beginning the game would have been much easier to stomach and not resulted in my nearly throwing my switch across the room.

It is a fun game though, nice 8-bit graphics, good challenge, and dirt cheap(I think it retails for like 3 bucks). Well worth it if you own a switch.

70. Lost Castle: Got this game in last months Humble monthly. Fun rogue like beat em up similar in style to golden axe.
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by prfsnl_gmr Sun Mar 11, 2018 12:19 am

I liked Wendy (GBC), but I understand why you didn’t. It isn’t exactly Metal Storm or VVVVVV.


1. Bastion (iOS)
2. LaserCat (360)
3. Zombie Incident (3DS)
4. Bye-Bye BoxBoy! (3DS)
5. Monument Valley 2 (iOS)
6. Zenge (iOS)
7. Master of Darkness (Game Gear/3DS)
8. Wonder Boy (SMS)
9. Full Throttle Remastered (iOS)
10. Adventure Island (NES)
11. Adventure Island II (NES)
12. Adventure Island (GB)
13. Super Adventure Island (SNES)
14. New Adventure Island (TG16)
15. Adventure Island III (NES)

Another solid Adventure Island game! New Adventure Island (TG16), somewhat ironically, takes the original Adventure Island/ Wonder Boy formula, speeds it up, smooths it out, and wraps it in clean, charming graphics and a solid soundtrack. The levels are varied; the game is consistently fun; and while it is challenging, it respects the player’s time (unlike the NES sequels...). Although it doesn’t have a lot of depth, it has aged gracefully and really showcases the TG16’s strengths. Highly recommended.

EDIT: I also beat Adventure Island III tonight. There are some minor enhancements, but it is basically more Adventure Island II. It looks a little better - and the background graphics are clearly inspired by Sonic the Hedgehog - and it plays a little smoother. The difficulty spikes in the game’s second half, however, and it becomes frustrating and tedious, just like Adventure Island II. Like it’s predecessor, it would have benefitted tremendously from a password system and a more forgiving continue system. (Only a very bored glutton for punishment would be able to beat this in a single sitting.)
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Re: Games Beaten 2018

by ElkinFencer10 Sun Mar 11, 2018 12:51 pm

After taking a whole 10 days to finish this game thanks to little time due to work and little motivation due to a severe depressive episode, I'm FINALLY back on to beating games.

Games Beaten in 2018 So Far - 36
* denotes a replay

January (16 Games Beaten)
1. Phantasy Star Portable - PlayStation Portable - January 1
2. Middle-Earth: Shadow of War - Xbox One - January 9
3. Duck Tales - NES - January 10
4. Yakuza Kiwami - PlayStation 4 - January 14
5. Xuan-Yuan Sword: The Gate of Firmament - PlayStation 4 - January 20
6. Doki Doki Literature Club - Steam - January 20
7. Deep Space Waifu - Steam - January 21
8. Turok: Dinosaur Hunter - Steam - January 21
9. Duck Tales 2 - NES - January 22
10. TaleSpin - NES - January 22
11. Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers - NES - January 23
12. Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers 2 - NES - January 24
13. Global Defence Force - PlayStation 2 - January 24
14. Darkwing Duck - NES - January 25
15. Tiny Toon Adventures - NES - January 26
16. Poi - Steam - January 28

February (18 Games Beaten)
17. Galaxy on Fire 2 Full HD - Steam - February 3
18. Final Fantasy Legend - Game Boy - February 5
19. Valkyrie Drive Bhikkhuni - Vita - February 5
20. Super Little Acorns 3D Turbo - 3DS - February 8
21. Adventures in Equica: Unicorn Training - Android - February 8
22. Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest - SNES - February 10
23. X-COM: UFO Defense - Steam - February 14
24. Ys IV: The Dawn of Ys -TurboGrafx-CD - February 18
25. Army Men - Game Boy Color - February 19
26. Army Men 2 - Game Boy Color - February 19
27. Army Men: Air Combat - Game Boy Color - February 20
28. Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA 2nd - PlayStation Portable - February 22
29. Army Men: Sarge's Heroes 2 - Game Boy Color - February 22
30. Army Men Advance - Game Boy Advance - February 24
31. Dynasty Warriors Gundam Reborn - PlayStation 3 - February 25
32. Army Men: Operation Green - Game Boy Advance - February 26
33. A Night Out - PC - February 27
34. Army Men: Turf Wars - Game Boy Advance - February 27

March (1 Game Beaten)
36. Phantasy Star - Master System - March 10*

36. Phantasy Star - Master System - March 10*


Phantasy Star is a series that a lot of folks are familiar with thanks to later entries, but relatively few folks seem to have played the Sega Master System original. While Phantasy Star often gets overshadowed by Dragon Quest and Fantasy Star, the other two "big" JRPG series of the era, Phantasy Star has long been my favorite. I originally played through it about ten years ago and remember hailing it as the greatest 8-bit RPG. Now, ten years later, I have a Retron 5, a Power Base Mini, and the retranslation and FM sound restoration patch that SMS Power put out, so when Eighties Ladies' Night was chosen as the Together Retro theme for March, I decided it was the perfect time to replay it, see if my opinion of it holds a decade later, and experience the FM sound and more accurate translation.


Phantasy Star tells the story of Alis, a girl who lives on the planet of Palma, one of three planets in the Algol star system. After seeing her brother killed in the street by the military, she vows to kill the Algol System's brutal dictator, LaShiec. Along the way she meets Token Warrior Guy, Token Mage Guy, and Token Magic Talking Animal to help her in her quest. You have to go between three different planets with different environments in your quest, fight a variety of monsters with an exponentially larger variety of pallet swaps, and gather the strength and equipment to usurp a tyrant's throne.


Visually, Phantasy Star is fairly standard on the overworld. It really doesn't stand out much from Final Fantasy and Dragon ​Quest too much in that regard. The battles are from a static first person perspective where you see the enemy but not your characters, just boxes with their HP and MP. No matter how many enemies you're fighting be it one or half a dozen, you only see a single enemy sprite; the only indication that you're fighting more enemies is the list of enemies and their HP in the top right corner of the screen. On the one hand, this is a bit disappointing as it precludes the option of fighting multiple enemy types like in Final Fantasy, but it does allow for larger, more detailed enemy sprites. I think it's a pretty fair trade off in that context.


What really sets Phantasy Star apart from its other 8-bit rivals is the dungeons. Whereas most of its contemporaries feature dungeons that have the same overhead perspective as the overworld, Phantasy Star employs a first person perspective that completely revolutionizes the immersion of dungeon crawling and is, as far as my experience goes, completely unique for RPGs of the era. Because this perspective would have been fairly demanding on the system on a large scale, the dungeons are all corridors one square wide, and the navigation just involves turning corners, going up and down stairs, and opening doors. Despite that, in addition to the aforementioned deep immersion, I found the dungeons to be far more challenging to navigate than those of Final Fantasy or Dragon Quest, but I mean that in the best possible way.


As for what the SMS Power patch changed, the most obvious change is going to be the music. The Master System's standard PSG music chip is okay for most games, but it doesn't always produce the most aurally aurally pleasing sounds in the world. The FM chip, however, which was removed when the Sega Mark III was brought to North America as the Sega Master System, produces some fantastic sounds that were leagues ahead of what the NES could produce. Some games used this chip better than others, but Phantasy Star is one of the examples of brilliant use of FM sound. The music with restored FM sound is simply fantastic and a marked improvement over the music that North Americans originally got in every way. As for the retranslation part of the patch, it had been long enough since I played Phantasy Star as it was originally released that I can't speak too much to how much better a translation this is than what Sega released, but I do know that it's a much more accurate translation from Japanese at least as far as the names of characters and items and the such goes.


Phantasy Star is, admittedly, not quite as flawless as I remembered. It is, however, still the epitome of 8-bit JRPG game design in my opinion. It has its flaws, but I still found it to be a thoroughly rewarding experience and unique among its 8-bit contemporaries. It surpasses both the original Final Fantasy and the original Dragon Quest in storytelling and world building, and it's a shame that it's not been more widely played in the West. Anyone who has access to a Master System, a Genesis with some kind of Power Base device, or a Game Boy Advance really needs to play this game. 13/10 would recommend.
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