What Are You Playing?

Aazealh

そうはいかぬ
Staff member
Played through the remake of Link's Awakening on Switch. I played in Hard (double damage + no heart drops) to give myself a modicum of challenge. The game is as great as ever, although I would honestly rank this version as inferior to the original one. As charming as the 3D is, it just doesn't beat the original pixel art. There are some small additions here and there but nothing too remarkable, except for the dungeon creation mode. It's limited but pretty fun, and makes it obvious that Nintendo will eventually release a "Zelda Dungeon Maker" game similar to Super Mario Maker. That would be a top seller.

I also bought Gato Roboto on Switch because it was on sale. It's a cute game that's very clearly inspired by Metroid. I had fun with it but finishing the game at 100% requires about 3h30, so it's not worth more than what I paid for it (3.99€).

I have tons of games I need to finish but right now I'm waiting for Asgard's Wrath, a VR game that's releasing this week.
 

Victor

"Don't forget your poison arrows"
I have tons of games I need to finish but right now I'm waiting for Asgard's Wrath, a VR game that's releasing this week.
It seems like both the games and the technology supporting VR are indeed steadily improving. Still not there yet, but progress is being made nonetheless, which is very good. A big reason why is because Facebook got involved, and as much as I dislike their practices as a company I have to commend the initiative.

I got more interested in VR when Luckey was still the main visionary behind it, around the time Oculus CV1 was announced and this technology started creeping into the mainstream. I didn't have the means to go full enthusiast and buy any of the headsets at the time of release though, and I was a little bit disappointed by the fact that it all looked like a sort of advanced gimmick more than a revolutionary technology, even though I was aware this is how most revolutionary technologies must've felt at the very beginning of their lifespans. I didn't agree with the opinion that it would eventually die down like similar previous attempts and then the cycle would repeat in another 10 years or so, but since then I've stopped keeping up with the news so rigorously and kinda feel out of the loop; but now with the release of the new Oculus models and all the new stuff on the horizon, it might be a good time to get back in.
 

Aazealh

そうはいかぬ
Staff member
It seems like both the games and the technology supporting VR are indeed steadily improving. Still not there yet, but progress is being made nonetheless, which is very good. A big reason why is because Facebook got involved, and as much as I dislike their practices as a company I have to commend the initiative.
Depends on what "being there" means to you. For all intents and purposes I'd say VR is worth getting into right now. The technology will certainly keep getting better but it will take a while (5 years) before the next great leap forward.

And yeah, Facebook is at the forefront of VR innovation. They see it as a way to diversify their business model and as their chance to own the next computing platform (after the smartphone). Sony has also been investing seriously into the tech and ecosystem.

I've stopped keeping up with the news so rigorously and kinda feel out of the loop; but now with the release of the new Oculus models and all the new stuff on the horizon, it might be a good time to get back in.
The Oculus Quest is a great device. It's standalone but will also soon support PC apps and games just by connecting it to a computer via a USB 3 cable. Starts at $399.
 

Victor

"Don't forget your poison arrows"
Depends on what "being there" means to you. For all intents and purposes I'd say VR is worth getting into right now. The technology will certainly keep getting better but it will take a while (5 years) before the next great leap forward.
What I mean by that, as far as gaming is concerned, is how things are still looking markedly experimental. Most original VR titles so far have either been in the branch of mini-games or some kind of short and focused experience with limited mechanics. Only recently have we got to see more "fully fledged" adventure type games, with realistic graphics and larger scopes, one of them being the upcoming Asgard's Wrath. This is a clear sign that developers are getting more and more comfortable with the technology and with investing more time and money to make complex games for it, but they still can't quite keep up with what we have on other systems. This is understandable considering current VR tech is still less than a decade old, but that means there are hardly any system sellers for the average consumer as of yet.

The Oculus Quest is a great device. It's standalone but will also soon support PC apps and games just by connecting it to a computer via a USB 3 cable. Starts at $399.
Yep, the Oculus Quest seems like the most compelling option for someone who would like to get into VR now. Aside from having a more acceptable price, it's also the most ambitious when it comes to VR innovation by ditching the wires and dependency on PC hardware.
 

Griffith

My posts are better.
The debate over which Super Mario Bros. platformer is better, Super Mario Bros. 3 or Super Mario World, is over. The winner is Yoshi’s Island!

Yoshi’s Island is the best platform game I’ve ever played (and I’ve played a few).
After getting 100% in Yoshi’s Island last week, I’ve been playing Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest. While it’s nowhere near Yoshi’s Island in terms of perfection, it’s a challenging little platformer with gorgeous visuals. I’m liking it a lot better than the original, both in terms of gameplay and graphics.
*crawls out of the jungle*

Funny you mention these two games since Miyamoto purportedly cited DKC as an influence on Yoshi's Island, but as a left-handed comment about how gamers will put up with mediocre gameplay if the graphics are good. That's unfair though because DKC and, especially, DKC2 had some great gameplay. I totally maxed out DKC2 and became a true gaming hero (I can't believe they had Yoshi over Link!?). Speaking of Yoshi's Island; among other things you mentioned, best final Bowser EVER!

I finished DKC2 the other day.
...

I had a great time playing it and am looking forward to the third and final entry on the SNES.
Like Aaz, I have bad news...

Haha, I've heard that Tomb Raider 2 is good, 3 is not quite as good, and it's pretty much downhill from there until the various reboots. I'm only playing the ones that have received good reviews, so hopefully I'll avoid most of the bad ones.
I never got into OG Tomb Raider, played some of the first one but found it clunky and uncompelling, and probably had some misplaced feelings of Mario loyalty over some racy lookin' sexpot, daggummit! I really dig the reboot trilogy, though. Got the first one for $4 on steam and it ended being one of my favorite games from that year and I'm playing the third one now. Repetitive, but still fun, and it at least addresses the elephant in the room that you're supposedly some archeologist that basically genocides armies.:shrug:

I've beat Batman Arkham Knight. Never played any Batman before, too much batmobil, too much fighting against enemy tanks, poor made ending. On the other hand, flying is pretty good, combat itself has some good combos and atmosphere is pretty good.
I would still play the original or, if that one's a bit dated now, Arkham City. The plots are much better as it has Batman writer Paul Dini involved and it doesn't yet contain all the tanky Batmobile gameplay, and City retains the awesome open-world Batmam action and a crazy plot involving more villains than you can keep track of, so that might be the perfect one for you. I love Joker's arc and Mark Hamill's performance in Arkham Knight though. I like all the Arkham games though, even black sheep Origins, which still did some interesting things with Batman and Joker.
 
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*crawls out of the jungle*

Funny you mention these two games since Miyamoto purportedly cited DKC as an influence on Yoshi's Island, but as a left-handed comment about how gamers will put up with mediocre gameplay if the graphics are good. That's unfair though because DKC and, especially, DKC2 had some great gameplay. I totally maxed out DKC2 and became a true gaming hero (I can't believe they had Yoshi over Link!?). Speaking of Yoshi's Island; among other things you mentioned, best final Bowser EVER!
I agree. I don't understand the hate the DKC games sometimes get. I've had fun playing every one of them so far.

Yes! The best final Bowser EVER! God damn, I miss that game...

Like Aaz, I have bad news...
That's too bad. Oh, well. I'll give it a shot and see what I think. I've heard DKC2 is the best of the three, though.

I never got into OG Tomb Raider, played some of the first one but found it clunky and uncompelling, and probably had some misplaced feelings of Mario loyalty over some racy lookin' sexpot, daggummit! I really dig the reboot trilogy, though. Got the first one for $4 on steam and it ended being one of my favorite games from that year and I'm playing the third one now. Repetitive, but still fun, and it at least addresses the elephant in the room that you're supposedly some archeologist that basically genocides armies.:shrug:
Oh, it's clunky for sure, but I had a great time with it. It was fun to see how such an early 3D game played, especially compared to the contemporaneous Super Mario 64, which nailed it right out the gate. Plus, after playing all those 2D games the last few years, it's 3D man!
 

XionHorsey

Hi! Hi!
Been playing Borderlands 3 since it first came out! I started with Amara, but Moze was the emergent favorite in terms of gameplay, and Zane was the emergent overall favorite.
 

Lawliet

Awkward Artist
Got my hands on Days Gone recently. It's nothing mind-blowing, but it didn't deserve the harsh reviews it got IMO. I've been having a great time with it so far.

Once that's done, I'm planning on jumping on to The Outer Worlds. Anyone played that yet?
 

Lawliet

Awkward Artist
I'm about 4h in. I'm digging it, but can't disagree with the overall sentiment that it's New Vegas in space.
True. I thought that at first glance too. But hey, I loved New Vegas, so I can't say I mind that much. I just hope this game won't share NV's clunky aspects or bugs and that it won't feel too outdated to play.
 

Walter

Administrator
Staff member
True. I thought that at first glance too. But hey, I loved New Vegas, so I can't say I mind that much. I just hope this game won't share NV's clunky aspects or bugs and that it won't feel too outdated to play.
Nah, no bugs/crashes/spinning heads on quest givers so far. :guts:

I didn't really mean to sound dismissive of the game entirely. There is a lot to like, otherwise I wouldn't be bothering with it. After all, New Vegas didn't really do it for me, personally. The setting is far more interesting to me than Vegas, so that's a great starting point. The quests are all well designed so far, and all the little ways they've developed this new universe have been thoughtful (space religion cooked up by a corporation), and it's unusually funny too.

Still, all of that adds up to you digging around trash cans for sellable goods, looting endless corpse fields of bandits, and shooting guys in the head in slow motion, so it all feels undeniably familiar.
 
I finished Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain and Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong’s Double Trouble last week. Blood Omen was awesome. Think Zelda, but with vampires, if you haven’t played it.

DKC 3 was fun, but it wasn’t as good as DKC 2. Still glad I played it, though. I love those games.

Next up: Wild Arms!
 

Walter

Administrator
Staff member
Next up: Wild Arms!
I think proper expectations are important to truly appreciate this little game. In J-RPG retrospective, Wild Arms is just a drop in the bucket. But during the drought of RPGs from 1996-1998, as US Square fans were waiting for FF7, this and Suikoden (came out around the same time) really hit the spot.
 
I think proper expectations are important to truly appreciate this little game. In J-RPG retrospective, Wild Arms is just a drop in the bucket. But during the drought of RPGs from 1996-1998, as US Square fans were waiting for FF7, this and Suikoden (came out around the same time) really hit the spot.
Whoah, that made me feel nostalgic. That's a weirdly specific time period in my childhood I forgot about until now haha. I was just getting heavy into RPGs at the time and remember there being basically nothing and feeling pretty desperate for anything that came along my way. I remember playing Suikoden a lot and it being incredible. Wild Arms was super cool at the time, especially for its anime intro (I think the song was cool too? It's been so long).

I remember Wild Arms being pretty fun mostly. But for some reason the end of the game always sticks into my head for having a ludicrously high encounter rate that made me start to resent the game. I think I rushed the end because it got so annoying. These are 20+ year old memories though.

As for what I'm playing, I just finished Bloodborne again. I went all out and did all the story chalice dungeons while I went through my game. Was mostly fun, but they're tedious no matter how you do them. Two random things I noticed this playthrough was that I never heard the weird talking in the houses at the beginning of the fishing hamlet. Have no damn idea what they're saying but it freaked me out as I thought I'd seen/heard everything at this point.

Also, if you die to the moon presence (yes... this somehow happened to me and I'm glad it did for this), the hunter's dream stays in a super creepy dark blood moon state. It looks fucking amazingly cool and was a really awesome surprise to dying to such a stupidly easy boss. Not sure if you can still do chalice dungeons etc after dying to the moon presence, but it'd be a really cool state to keep your game in to farm blood gems or whatever if that's what a person is into.

I beat the game Detention in one sitting over a bottle of sake as well (I earned it!). Super creepy and cool game. The style and atmosphere was sort of like Silent Hill and Fatal Frame had a love child. Not particularly difficult and with simple, yet cool puzzles. Really loved it and gave me a lot to think about.

Now I'm finally playing Resident Evil 7, as my old computer did not like it and my newer gaming laptop isn't an asshole about it. So far, it's been pretty awesome, it's mostly having to fuss with PC settings to make it not annoying to play.
 
Wild arms is awesome. My first experience with it was the demo of wa3 on jampack winter 2002 lol. Always thought they were cool games, unique for jrpg's.

Been playing Devil May Cry 3 special edition on my old PS2, mostly going through bloody palace. First time in many years. It's been really fun. I'm a lot better at the game as an adult lmao. I was using Virgil at first, but it turns out I'm better with Dante. Beowulf is where it's at.
 
I took a week of vacation and thought I'd tackle Hollow Knight. Lol at me. 27 hrs and finished the game.....but I realize I'm no where close to being done. What a gem! Enjoyed this so much more than bloodstained, which I felt was a nice treat.
Not entirely sure I want to tackle even the 2nd and 3rd endings. 0% chance I do the rest.

This year has been a let down for me in gaming. Sekiro left me feeling extremely let down. The only one I've enjoyed this year is re2 remake. With ps5 coming out next year I'm hesitant to grab much else, or I'll be getting the "re release" of anything coming out soon. :/

From up above I am in the process of replaying the entire LOK series (minus BO2) and I must say I enjoy this story as much as I ever did.
 
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Aazealh

そうはいかぬ
Staff member
I had fun with Blasphemous on the Switch this week. I wonder how Bloodstained will compare to it (haven't played it yet because I was waiting for the patch fixing all the Switch issues).
I've also been putting time into Until You Fall, a VR roguelite that's pretty addictive.
 

Griffith

My posts are better.
I took a week of vacation and thought I'd tackle Hollow Knight. Lol at me. 27 hrs and finished the game.....but I realize I'm no where close to being done. What a gem! Enjoyed this so much more than bloodstained, which I felt was a nice treat.
Not entirely sure I want to tackle even the 2nd and 3rd endings. 0% chance I do the rest.
You mean in Hollow Knight or Bloodstained? I definitely think there's more work exploring and completing the former than the latter, but the latter has a lot more gameplay/combat depth, though you can certainly cheese certain combinations, making it easier sometimes.

This year has been a let down for me in gaming. Sekiro left me feeling extremely let down. The only one I've enjoyed this year is re2 remake.
Pretty much my take on the year, though it sounds like I enjoyed Bloodstained more than you did.

With ps5 coming out next year I'm hesitant to grab much else, or I'll be getting the "re release" of anything coming out soon. :/
You're probably being over-cautious with the games and not enough with the system. Wait for PS5 to earn your money with the library first, let alone deny yourself games you want to play in the meantime. I'd rather get the most out if my PS4 with those versions until I have to move on. It's not like they're all going to be immediately remastered where it would really make a difference anyway.

I had fun with Blasphemous on the Switch this week. I wonder how Bloodstained will compare to it (haven't played it yet because I was waiting for the patch fixing all the Switch issues.
Definitely looks like Bloodstained has a lighter tone, but it's guts are basically revamped SotN of course, so the question is how does Blasphemous compare to that? Looks really cool.
 
Quoting on my phone is becoming an issue. I really enjoyed Bloodstained, but Hollow Knight was another level. I have over 30 hrs in a week now. Not a usual scenario for my life. Probably due to being a little less Castlevania in setting and secrets at every corner. The lore and difficulty reminds me of Souls. I didn't get pulled into Bloodstained as much with the story, though it's a very fun game.

As for the PS5 and all that, it'll likely be 5-600, which is like a weekend of ot. ps4 will still get love. My daughter now hordes the ps3 in her room. I can always use another 4k player to boot. The re released games in 2014-2015 were my issue. Tomb raider, last of us, ds2, and a few others coming out "again." I don't mind waiting honestly. Rather take full advantage of my projector and atmos. Will also give me time to try some games I never gave a chance. This years best for me are like a lovely stroll down memory lane. :)
 

Aazealh

そうはいかぬ
Staff member
Definitely looks like Bloodstained has a lighter tone, but it's guts are basically revamped SotN of course, so the question is how does Blasphemous compare to that? Looks really cool.
Blasphemous is a take on Castlevania but with a clear Dark Souls influence. The story is dark and mostly told through item descriptions and cutscenes you have to piece together, combat is more ponderous than fast-paced, the music is great and it's all pixel art. I would recommend it.
 

Griffith

My posts are better.
I really enjoyed Bloodstained, but Hollow Knight was another level. I have over 30 hrs in a week now. Not a usual scenario for my life. Probably due to being a little less Castlevania in setting and secrets at every corner. The lore and difficulty reminds me of Souls. I didn't get pulled into Bloodstained as much with the story, though it's a very fun game.
I would agree with that, Knight has in spades what Bloodstained is lacking in, which is style, tone and atmosphere.

As for the PS5 and all that, it'll likely be 5-600, which is like a weekend of ot.
If it's that much I'm going to be waiting a very long time to try it. I don't get ot. =)

The re released games in 2014-2015 were my issue. Tomb raider, last of us, ds2, and a few others coming out "again."
I was going to say, besides GTAV and Last of Us how many prominent remasters are there really, but otherwise it sounds like you've got it all planned out. I'm a big believer in adopting systems late, because you never know, and then holding out as long as possible. I guess buying the latest Playstation is as close to a sure thing as there is though; even if it's a relative letdown or over-expensive it's still going to be a powerful machine with most of the latest games.

Blasphemous is a take on Castlevania but with a clear Dark Souls influence. The story is dark and mostly told through item descriptions and cutscenes you have to piece together, combat is more ponderous than fast-paced, the music is great and it's all pixel art. I would recommend it.
That's all I needed to hear to take the plunge, and so far in my very little time with it I am not disappointed. I did manage to just power tap/cheese through the first boss, which is far more 'Vania than Souls, but it's definitely a hybrid with a heavy dose of Souls added to the equation. I especially like the parry/riposte mechanic, though it might not be as much fun on faster, more punishing enemies. Great style though, reminds me of all my favorites.
 
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Aazealh

そうはいかぬ
Staff member
That's all I needed tp hear to take the plunge, and so far in my very little time with it I am not disappointed. I did manage to just power tap/cheese through the first boss, which is far more 'Vania than Souls, but it's definitely a hybrid with a heavy dose of Souls added to the equation. I especially like the parry/riposte mechanic, though it might not be as much fun on faster, more punishing enemies. Great style though, reminds me of all my favorites.
And wait till your hear the village's musical theme, you'll have Tristram flashbacks.
 

Griffith

My posts are better.
And wait till your hear the village's musical theme, you'll have Tristram flashbacks.
Oh, I was having Diablo flashbacks the second I heard the voiceover, "Is that the same narrator? ...Naaaah." Then I realized every other voice had that kind of timbre, which totally fits. :SK: <-Someone else the protagonist reminds me of, & aesthetically several other of the series' stone-faced death knights.


Btw, I also pre-loaded Death Stranding last night, so Kojima officially has me in his clutches again for at least one more meme.

 
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