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Everything posted by aoanla

  1. So far, my first impression, after about two hours, is generally positive, despite my civ being penned in by aggressive space creatures (not civilisations) in all directions, curtailing my survey ships' explorations. (I definitely don't have the military power to deal with the space creatures themselves, and I'm not spending power on military vessels until I can upgrade a bit anyway. Definitely a bit frustrating if you're going for the Science start as I am...) It's definitely a "lighter" game than CK2, in terms of systems and design - it's a lot easier to see what's going on and what you need to do, although I'm still getting to grips with a few awkwardnesses of the interface (it's surprisingly hard to get to info about the leader of a ship from the ship screen itself, for example; and I've accidentally cancelled a ships' orders once without really knowing how I did it). The writing, as some of the reviews noted, is fantastic - one reason I'm grumpy about the hostile space creatures penning me in is that it limits how quickly I can experience more of that writing!
  2. The Big FPS Playthrough MISSION COMPLETE

    I've also never heard of Gunman Chronicles - some quick Googling suggests that it started out as a Quake mod, and was ported to GoldSrc as part of a commercial release. It sounds pretty awesome from what's been written about it, I'm sad it seems to be unobtainable after the fact!
  3. Recently completed video games

    I'm actually not: the point of art exhibits is that you take your time to soak in the things around you, rather than running from place to place to achieve some kind of aim. (If you do go to an art exhibit and try to get to just the most famous piece in it, then you're missing the point, and usually have a bad time.) The word is probably "contemplative". It seems to me that Everybody's Gone To The Rapture shares a similar intent in the way you interact with it - the environment is lovely, there's bits of story around to follow, but trying to aggressively "complete stuff" in a gamey way spoils the experience.
  4. Is that in DS3, or the Souls games in general?
  5. Recently completed video games

    But at least you aren't supposed to run in art exhibits, so there's that?
  6. Recently completed video games

    I'd say something about how treating Everybody's Gone to the Rapture as a game (rather than a kind of art exhibit or something) is harmful to your experience of it, but people would just shout at me like last time, so...
  7. This, very much so - Doom was "simple" enough (and yet did enough different things "right") and long enough ago that there's too many different perspectives on what makes Doom, Doom for any new Doom to satisfy everyone. As another person who's very much in the camp that the real feel of Doom is in its "arcade FPS" feel - the speed, evasion and enemy management being deliberately "unrealistic" in order to favour an almost bullet-hell feel - I don't think anyone is going to make that version of Doom again. (It would probably have to sacrifice "graphical fidelity" for performance, for a start, and it's actually not clear if being fully 3d actually helps a game be purely arcadey. Doom's 2d aiming helps you to hit things that you'd find much harder to nail with a second axis to aim on, and really does help with the kinetics of the whole experience.) To be honest, although it's feel is more Quake (which is fine with me - I prefer Quake's aesthetics anyway), we already have something close to that version of Doom (in Demo-sized form) in Devil Daggers...
  8. Sure, but the popular perception of Dark Souls isn't, perhaps, as clear on that. I certainly remember getting the impression from conversations about both Demon's Souls and the first Dark Souls that invasion, rather than assistance, was more common - that Dark Souls games were somewhat multiplayer, certainly, but perhaps thanks to human nature, biased towards other players messing you up, rather than assisting you. Now, I've never played any of the games, so I don't have a direct experience of this, but certainly that perception was real, and one contributing factor to my not buying into the series.
  9. Isn't Mortar & Pestle basically a puzzle game like Head Over Heels (from the days of 1980s "gimmick" puzzle games)? It feels more like that - a game where you have to separate Mortar and Pestle to solve bits of puzzles which the other can't do separately, but then combine them to do other bits - than a "two buddies" game like, say Bubba and Squeek (from the days of early 1990s platformers with buddy AI).
  10. I think you're right in that it's not so much the difficulty of Dark Souls which causes division, but the amount of content you have to work through to get back to where you were after a failure. I know that I find games with more "loss" on failure to be more frustrating - with the flight sim example, the issue isn't so much that landing is hard, as landing is hard, and you tend to only do it at the end of a hour or two long mission. Personally, I've definitely had more time, and invested more total effort, in games with tight retry loops, just because they let me easily practise the stuff I'm bad at (and, in Super Meat Boy's case, at least, as there's little consequence to loss, in most areas, it's also safe to work through a tilt by just playing through it). (I also actually find the "leaving your stuff there to pick up, but only if you get it the next time" mechanic to actually make this more, not less frustrating - it annoyed me in Shovel Knight, because it adds extra stress and investment in "getting things right" on the first retry. I'd rather you just lost stuff entirely than had this carrot dangled in front of you.)
  11. I like the fact that Rob apparently had similar experiences with early flight sims as I remember having. (My flight sim was the Amiga version of F19 Stealth Fighter, and I don't think that I ever managed to actually successfully land a plane at the end of a mission, ever. I don't think I ever managed to dock in a space station in Elite 2: Frontier, either.) There's something to be said for the possibility that this just means that this type of game "isn't for me" (and I haven't bought a "proper flight sim" since, so maybe I learned my lesson), but I think during the period, a lot of the "inherent difficulty" was, essentially, justified due to lack of effective competition (both between games, and also for my time, as someone who was at school, and thus could afford to spend a lot of time failing to land virtual planes) I had nothing better to do than fail at stuff. The issue of this is when the game is just too difficult to ever get to the bit where you get the "reward" - I never managed to get a reward for landing a plane, so all I have is just the frustration of not being able to. (And in the end, I just ended up ejecting and ditching the plane at the end of missions, which really did kill my mission progression...) [ironically, "high difficulty" really just pushed me towards cheat codes in games, which is presumably not the intended result?]
  12. Eeeh, I think it also betrays a certain lack of confidence in the product, though: if you're saying that a recording of someone interacting with your product is capable of replacing the actual experience of interacting with your product, then you don't have much confidence in how much draw the interactive experience actually has. I think Danielle and Rob made a strong point about how Let's Plays tend not to harm sales (and producers of those games don't claim otherwise) of games with a big possibility space - strategy games, FPSes and the like - because you can only ever capture one possibility out of all of the configurations available.
  13. I think there's a distinction here, on the basis that a film is already a "recording", so a "recording of a recording" essentially loses nothing in the translation, but I shall elucidate more in the next quote reply. So, your example is interesting, as what you're talking about here is essentially audiobooks, right? A conversion of a written work into a form for people who "can't be bothered to turn the pages (or read the words)". And, certainly, Audiobooks are generally not considered enough of a transformation to count as a re-interpretation - they're still the same story, told via descriptive prose, just spoken rather than written. But movies do something different, right, because they transform the narrative content of the novel into a new form, which involves a certain amount of reinterpretation, and produces a work which is inevitably different (even slavish recreations of a written work into film form are a very different experience to the original written work). Now, the question with "That Dragon, Cancer" is: if we can argue that the act of making a recording of someone "playing" it is not sufficiently transformative to make it a different form - if you lose nothing essential in the process which makes buying "That Dragon, Cancer" and experiencing it yourself - then what does that say about the value that "That Dragon, Cancer" provides in what was lost? (As an avid consumer of Let's Plays myself, I would say that I do agree that there's not much point to a Let's Play of something like That Dragon, Cancer to me. I tend to watch specific Let's Players, who are particularly good at a particular kind of game (and particularly entertaining as people) - ChristopherOdd, for example, with regard to strategy/tactical games, or Sleepcycles with more arcadey things - watching a Let's Play of skill-based games is entertaining in a different way to playing those games yourself. I'll never be as good at XCOM2 as Chris Odd is, for example, so there's definite value in seeing him achieve things that I never could - and similarly, for skill-gated games, I'd never know what happens late in, for example, Nuclear Throne, if not for being able to watch Sleepcycles play. There's certainly games that I've not bought that I've seen people Let's Play - but those are games which, for the most part, I wouldn't have bought anyway, because I know that I wouldn't enjoy playing them (or at least, not until they were discounted enough to justify the amount of the game I can actually get through / have the time to get through). In fact, the games I did buy on the basis of Let's Plays - Shovel Knight, for example - are actually games that I never really got very far in because of their challenge, and I regretted my purchase in some instances. )
  14. XCOM 2

  15. XCOM 2

    Somewhat spoilery question I have to ask, having finally seen one:
  16. The Big FPS Playthrough MISSION COMPLETE

    Also, yeah, I should say that I really do prefer Quake to Quake II as well -it's not just the slog it involves (the innovation of backtracking through previously done levels is not one I think anyone needed), but also the lack of imagination - it's really the first game that showed that when id tried to consciously invent a coherent world, they really weren't actually that good at it! Plus, there's a bit more "frat" enemy design, which Quake avoided mostly by everything being Lovecraft-lite horrors. (I was so disappointed when Quake IV ended up being a sequel to the latter, rather than the former, even if it does a fairly good job of modernising it.)
  17. The Big FPS Playthrough MISSION COMPLETE

    Yeah, Unreal was very much a game which sold on the amazing world a little more than the amazing gameplay. (That said: it has much better enemy AI than the average game of the time - the quality of the deathmatch AI was what led to the Unreal Tournament spin-offs even happening.) I do think that the weapon design deserves a little credit for not being the already standard "guns from 80s action movies" approach of Quake II etc.
  18. Finally getting around to listen to this episode, and I have a few comments which haven't been made yet. Firstly, on the "playing Just Cause/Bioshock etc like a boring FPS makes it boring" topic, I think my problem with games like this is that I never seem to have enough "special cool stuff juice" to use my cool stuff as much as I'd like to. Certainly, I remember basically having huge ADAM issues in Bioshock and running out quite a lot, which meant I had to go back to playing boring FPS with shooting. If you're going to provide people with limited amounts of "do cool stuff" resource, then you should probably make it so that not-doing-cool-stuff is also basically bearable. Secondly, riffing off of the "people calling the SNES the snez, snes etc", I think it's definitely a Britishism, but possibly fed in from the fact that Nintendo was never as big a thing in the UK (or several other bits of Europe) in the 80s. (We were all either Sega or Amiga/ST/other-things-which-didn't-take-off-in-the-USA.) As a result, the SNES was the first thing from Nintendo that UK people might actually care about, and we had no real reference for it being a sequel to a thing called a NES. I think that might have encouraged us to compress the name all as one thing.
  19. XCOM 2

    Christopher Odd is also covering the first few months (all that you can do in the preview build the streamers have) pretty quickly - he also has complete class perk breakdown videos for each class, including the Psi Operative. (And Northernlion is doing a playthrough, but given his usual approach to tactics, I'm not sure he'll actually get to the end of the preview...)
  20. XCOM 2

    Specifically: there's a little crosshair icon to the left of the health bar on enemy troops, which is displayed if the current destination would give you LOS to them (and I think it changes to yellow if you'd be flanking). Similarly, your troops' icon shows if you'd be flanked if you moved to the current destination. In general, the UI seems to have been significantly polished for this kind of thing over EU.
  21. Quitter's Club: Don't be ashamed to quit the game.

    Ah, in that case, I probably did pick the right game (I completely agree that super hero stuff is best when not trying to force itself to be Super Gritty and Serious). On the other hand: I'm as completionist as you, and I find the driving bits far harder than I suspect they're supposed to be...
  22. Quitter's Club: Don't be ashamed to quit the game.

    I think that's probably the core of my problem with 4 - I kinda avoided SR1 and 2 because I don't really get on with the 3D GTAs (and have horrible problems with every 3d driving game ever), and was only vaguely interested in 3 (but not enough to play it). So, coming to 4, I'm basically lacking any particular context, or enthusiasm, for the GTAish bits, since I got it for all the bits which aren't like that. (In retrospect, I probably should be playing Infamous, but SR4 has a linux port, so...)
  23. 2015's Games of the Year?

    Basing things purely on stuff I played in 2015 (even if it came out earlier), I think I'd have to give the crown, if awarding it right this instant, to 80 Days. But that's probably biased by it being the last really impressive thing I played in 2015, both in terms of writing and general production values. Runners up would have to be Invisible, Inc, which is similarly both a really well designed game, and also a well produced one, and Her Story, which is getting the position just for being a good FMV game released in 2015, with a new mechanic.
  24. Quitter's Club: Don't be ashamed to quit the game.

    Yeah, I had the same thing with Undertale as well - I played the demo, and really didn't feel that it sold me enough on it being "enjoyable" to play for me to buy the full game (regardless of the apparently awesome stuff, which I should hypothetically like, which reviews mention). I did watch a bit of a playthrough on YouTube to see if the gameplay itself gets any less boring later, and I can't see that it does, so... (Meanwhile, having finally had a go at Saints Row IV after it got a Linux port, I'm perilously close to Quitting it about 25% of the way in. Like a lot of "open world games" seem to be, it's not so much a game as an environment for containing lots of different games, and some of those games are much less interesting to me than others. (As I seem to remember, a lot of the reviews had the same sentiment, in that the "classic" Saints Row/GTA style bits are actually the least fun parts, but the overarching game seems to think that I actually want to care about stealing cars, when I can jump over buildings, run faster than a locomotive and hurl fireballs.) The problem is that the side-plot "loyalty" missions, and quite a bit of the main plot missions, are a mix of all of the game types chained together, and I can't avoid the games which really annoy me, or which I have huge problems with. This is becoming an issue quite quickly now, as the difficulty of the various game types seems to increase as you complete them, so I'm very close to reaching peak "I don't care" when encountering the less interesting ones...)
  25. Quitter's Club: Don't be ashamed to quit the game.

    I've come to terms with the fact that I'm never going to be good enough at Luftrausers to unlock the last few Achievements and challenges, so I guess I'm "quitting" it in the sense of trying to progress in it. (That doesn't mean I'm not going to give it a few minutes of time every so often casually, though. Just that all the designs I find most fun to fly are the ones I don't have anything left to unlock with...)