Ben X

The Big FPS Playthrough MISSION COMPLETE

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After struggling with the third level, I decided to take the tutorial's initial advice and set the difficulty to 'new to FPSes', which rankles a little, but better that than be killed by a grenade with less than a second's warning every two minutes.

 

And, uh, I finished it already. Surprisingly short, and that's including a load of 'follow the NPC' or siege or truck-turret sections filling it out. Speaking of which, it doubles down on FPS tropes as well as 24-style cheesiness pretty quickly. The banter and scenarios get progressively sillier as well; at one point your Captain tells you a playable story from his past (back when he was a 'leftenant', as the subtitles spell it for the Brit characters - not that I should be surprised, as they also spell 'heh heh' as 'hehe') where he shot the main villain's arm off, like this is Shadow Of Mordor or something.

 

The shooter mechanics themselves are pretty solid (except for those stupid grenades) and the AI's impressive, but frankly it's nothing I wasn't doing in TimeShift before I got my powers. It's not a bad game, but I'm surprised at how average it turned out to be.

 

An insanely generous/rose-tinted retrospective (I agree that the Middle East street levels had good level design, though, with just a little bit of non-linearity to all the firefights and routes)

Post-mortem interview

Post-mortem

 

I've previously played Crysis, and I'm skipping STALKER Clear Sky for reasons previously detailed (as with SoC, I will hopefully at some point play this through on Easy with a ton of mods and a more RPG mindset).

 

Here's what I posted about Crysis at the time, on another forum:

 

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Crysis has a problem where it crashes if you try to change the settings, but apart from that it's pretty sweet. I'm getting my arse handed to me in every firefight, though. The suit-powers run out too quickly to make any difference, and it doesn't auto-switch to another weapon when you run out of ammo. Still, it's good fun and I seem to be running everything on high no problem.

 

...two years later...

 

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That settings crash seems to have been fixed in the past two years! I think I was on Medium before, now I'm on Easy it's not half so insanely difficult. I do still run out of ammo a lot and sometimes get too cocky and die. The suit powers are still useless though,. Just leave it on armour for health regen and ignore the others. Do they get upgraded during the game, or is that in the sequels?

They've taken out the tagging-enemies-with-your-binoculars thing from Far Cry which is a shame because you lose the whole sneaking around making a plan thing, but I guess this isn't that kind of game. [edit: no they haven't, Ben, you fool] It does feel really cool when you're sweeping through a village, chucking grenades and taking cover, though.

 

[it is pointed out to me that the suit powers recharge a lot faster when you're not moving]

 

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I'm enjoying Crysis a LOT more now that I've got the hang of the suit powers and stuff. I'm on a bloody annoying tank level at the moment, though, which apparently most people loved? It's the one where you're driving the tank and shooting all the other tanks. You're constantly one or two hits away from dying, it keeps auto-saving in the middle of it and the tank gets stuck really easily.

 

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I had a very nice Far Cry 1 moment in my last session where I tagged a jeep that was patrolling round a warehouse. I managed to hide inside the warehouse, watch my radar to see when they were coming back round, then shoot a barrel just in time to catch them in the explosion!

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Okay, the refinery bit was good fun. I'm up against cheap-Korean-knock-off-super-suit guys with miniguns now, it's pretty cool. I'm really enjoying finding cover, going invisible, nipping out for a bit to cause some mayhem then disappearing again, but it's also fun when that goes to bollocks a bit and you end up charging round dig-outs blasting everyone in sight.

 

The weapon system is a bit weird - there are some guns like the SCAR that you barely get any ammo for and have to discard immediately, plus I've picked up some rifle grenades but I have no idea how to use them. I've googled it and apparently:


"Hit "C" while holding the weapon. You can step through each selection by hitting the corresponding number key repeatedly. To select incendiary ammo, use "5". To use rifle grenades, use "3" to select the launcher mod and right-click out, then hit "X" to step through the rifle's ammo select: full auto, single shot, grenade."

 

Fucking what?!

 

 

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I've figured it out now, but I'm sure I tried to have a fiddle around with this stuff earlier in the game and didn't have the option, so I guess it levelled me up  without me realising. I think once I finish/give up on (if it gets as bad as everyone says) it, I'm going to have a quick go from the start on medium, now that I actually understand how the hell everything works...

 

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Ok, I'm in the alien ship. The gravity going was quite fun, but the floaty alien ghosts are annoying and I've just got to a bit with timed locking forcefields and I cannot see what the fuck I'm supposed to be doing. I didn't realise quite how heavy a slump this game would take!

 

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I got out of that alien room - it turns out that the sparkly tunnel I tried was incoming, so I needed to go in the other one. That sent me to another room where I could barely figure out where to go, then I got out of the spaceship to the icey island, which was fun for about two minutes shooting the aliens as they jumped around the place, until it put me on an escort mission, then three turret sequences in a row (truck, AA, dropship). I fucking hate these turret sequences, they always handle like shit and have really low health. This dropship is fucking impossible to manoeuvre. Then the game crashed. I'm pretty tempted to uninstall. Crazy how badly they can fuck up a game halfway through.

[EDIT: looked at a walkthrough, seems I've got two of these air fights then some corridor shooting then that's it. I might give myself 5-10 minutes to get through the air battles and if not just give up]

[EDIT: ok, managed to fluke my way through the air battles - seems you just have to keep shuffling about like an idiot until you've shot everything. It crashed again as I was finishing the mission, so not sure if it saved or not...]

 

 

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I encountered two massive game-breaking bugs on my way to the last section, so I gave up. I started again on the second highest setting, and it's definitely a lot more fun once you've had a ten-hour tutorial! Just knowing how my suit and weapons work, plus remembering there's a prone key (and, yes, knowing that there are little petrol cannisters on the back of the jeeps!), really helped. The first bits are still pretty tough, though, because they're completely out in the open with loads of enemies and boats. No wonder I felt overwhelmed.

 

Anyway, a game with lots of cool stuff about it, but too much fluff and a crap ending.

 

So it's onto Crysis Warhead. I've heard that it's basically the best bits of the first game distilled, which is great but I hope they do a full tutorial again, because I barely figured out all the weapon-modding, suit powers and general controls at the time of playing the first game, never mind three years later! I'm almost tempted to give at least some of the original a play again for that reason, plus maybe the fun story overlaps, but I'll resist.

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Ah, ok, so it's that the invisibility barely depletes if you're stood still. Also, I've already found the weapon modding stuff and it's relatively simple actually. In fact, I'm going to start again on medium/normal, because I'm waltzing through this at the mo, and that's not really the best way to play Crysis/Far Cry (for the originals, anyway).

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Okay, I'm still breezing through this on Normal. It's fun, but not really very challenging so far. I wonder whether, as this is known as the actiony spinoff of the first game, they intentionally lowered the difficulty. Another niggle is that the tagging isn't as helpful as I remember it being in Far Cry - your radar is a lot smaller, I think. This seems different from Crysis too, again possibly they're encouraging you to run into firefights rather than be all stealthy.

 

I think I'll take the action approach and also try to do stupid stuff like speed up to someone then turn my strength up and punch them to oblivion or throw a turtle at them real hard.

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Well, I've played a bit more of this, and I'm now into the 'not as nice looking frozen section of a Crysis game'. I also just had to go through a Call Of Duty bit with a team of supersuit allies and fight a boss - as with all Crytek games, when it goes linear, it sucks. Now I'm stuck because I can't tell how I'm supposed to get to my next checkpoint. I think it may involve platforming, but it's really frustrating trying to find out because there's no quicksave. Walkthrouuuugh!

 

I have to say, I'm currently a bit disappointed with this. It feels like a dumbed-down version of Crysis.

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That's a coincidence, just this morning I started the day with an hour-long retrospective on the Crysis series [and why it's not particularly great] :

 

 

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Well, I really enjoyed the first one, but this one not so much and I hear the next two are pretty bad, so that sounds about right. Please remind me to watch that when I finish Crysis 2!

 

The walkthrough says it is platforming (or at least high jumping), but on some ice platforms which I must have disregarded. So back I go to fight through this section again!

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Crysis 3 is an improvement over 2 but I still wouldn't say I enjoyed it. I never made it to the end of either of them. Crysis 2 is one of the most disappointing sequels I've ever played.

 

My memory is a bit hazy on Warhead but I felt it cut out a lot of the slower parts of the first Crysis but if those are parts that you enjoyed I can understand you not liking it as much. I don't recall feeling like I was forced into more action with it though.

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1 hour ago, Roderick said:

I believe Crysis 3 is actually pretty good, so maybe just skip the second one?

 

I'm playing through my FPS backlog, no more no less. So when I get to 2, I'll play it until it reaches the point of too-shittiness. I don't own 3, so I won't be playing that!

 

1 hour ago, thepaulhoey said:

My memory is a bit hazy on Warhead but I felt it cut out a lot of the slower parts of the first Crysis but if those are parts that you enjoyed I can understand you not liking it as much. I don't recall feeling like I was forced into more action with it though.

 

Special Paul flashback quote-from-elsewhere!

 

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Replaying Crysis Warhead now, and I'm loving it. I think the thing with it is, it's a game where the combat is as fun as you make it. If you go invisible, kill a man, let it recharge and repeat it gets really boring. But when you turn on super speed and run into a base, put on strength mode and grab a red barrel, then throw it into a group of 5 soldiers and shoot it, it is fucking awesome.

Edit: Also Warhead is much better than Crysis I think. Never finished Crysis, got to the bit where I had to fly some helicopter thing that controlled badly.

 

 

I think my time for making fun combat in this game may be over, but we'll see. I'm on a siege section now (groan).

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My favorite parts of Crysis 1 were using the suits abilities to take down soldiers. Once the aliens showed up I lost all interest. I would love a Far Cry style game with a Cyrsis suit, where you have to take down a bunch of bases and can decide how to mix stealth, speed and strength to do that.

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I enjoyed the original Crysis a lot more once I cheated to make it so I'd never run out of suit energy and have to wait for it to recharge. I was just full on Maximum man all the time, and it was a hoot.

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Okay, I got through the siege section by taking to higher ground (not sure they intended that, it was suddenly a cakewalk) and got back to shooting men in corridor-room levels which was good fun again! Throwing explosive barrels is the way forward. Invisibly laying landmines for vehicles to run over is good too.

I just did the train bit, which is an on-rails section but good fun basically because it's dead easy and the explosions look great. I got through the alien turret-siege bit at the end of it pretty easily as well. It's back to another on-rails bit now, though, I think. Hopefully I'll get some proper outdoors man-throwing again soon. As with a lot of these super-power FPSes (Bioshock etc), it never lets you off the leash properly or soon enough. It'd be great to just have a section where I don't need to care about health and there are explosive things everywhere, I can pick up trucks etc.

 

EDIT: okay, there wasn't another on-rails section (though there was a stupidly long cutscene where Psycho's mate dies so he slowly drowns an anonymous Korean soldier then sits there crying for a bit). I am now back in the jungle infiltrating a compound! Yay! Also, something I forgot to mention earlier, the optional objectives, are back, which is cool.

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Finished. That was only a little man-shooty bit before a fiddly avoid-the-aliens-and-pick-up-a-mega-weapon and shoot the EOGB about five times with it before the game ending (with another awful and weirdly sado-masochistic cutscene). Disappointing.

Both Crysis games so far needed to look at their core gameplay (the supersuit powers in the non-linear 'action bubbles' full of good AIs) and just iterate on it, rather than keep putting a load of linear gimmicky/fiddly shit in there. I wouldn't even mind the aliens showing up if they provided a clever variation on using your suit powers (e.g the invisibility doesn't work on them, and rather than shooting at you they melee attack you, so you have to use speed and strength to circumnavigate them then throw shit at them). I had great fun in the fun bits, but they were too diluted. Also, again, I feel like the game was intentionally less stealthy and a bit nerfed overall, which was a shame. (In fact, fuck it, I'm going to reinstall the first game now and see if that feeling is accurate.) It always looked lovely, though, and felt slick.

 

A rather negative review which I agree with a lot of (most reviews were very positive, I think)

Post-mortem 'shaped' by @Chris!

Write-up of a GDC post-mortem (I can't find a video of the original presentation)

And oops, forgot the Crysis 1 forum thread previously

 

I didn't say much about Mirror's Edge when I played it:

 

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I'm disappointed by Mirror's Edge so far. It's like a thousand QTEs stitched together where they don't tell you what button to press so you have to play through each one of them ten times each just to figure out what the designers want you to do.

 

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Have given up on Mirror's Edge about 75% through - just so frustrating. Another game that should be making me feel cool but doesn't let me. Felt more like a tech demo tbh.

 

Retrospective

Making of

Postmortem

Thumbs thread (another one started by @toblix!

 

 

So it's now onto Killing Floor (if anyone fancies some co-op with me and I can get it all working) and Section 8 which I know nothing about!

 

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Man I would love to do Killing Floor co-op if I could find the time.  Haven't played the first one in a long while so I'm probably crap at it.  Maybe we can work something out.

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Sweet! I'm TimeGentleman on Steam. Everyone friend me, and in the meantime I'll try and figure out headset stuff - my PC was made by a mate and I often have issues with mic in/out, that kind of thing. I won't be around for the next 15 or so hours at least, though.

 

(Just played a bit of Crysis and the action bubbles are immediately more fun and challenging. Enemies definitely got nerfed in Warhead, or the difficulty levels are a lot different...)

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I'm pretty sure I have both Ben and Osmosisch on my Steam friends list.  I'm SecretAsianManz if anyone else is looking to group up (look for the same reindeer as my forum avatar).  My time is really limited these days and I definitely won't have an opportunity for KF until at the weekend and even then my time will depend on my kid being asleep.

 

I'm also going to go ahead and throw Killing Floor 2 out there for consideration while we're at it.  The core game is mostly the same but I'm far more familiar with it than KF1 and have nearly every perk maxed out so I could do some carrying if need be.

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48 minutes ago, TychoCelchuuu said:

Section 8 is basically a multiplayer shooter (like Killing Floor, really) so it's going to be tough to give that one much of a shake.

 

I did bring this up with @Laco when they offered me the key, but they recommended it anyway...

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