Author Topic: What Are You Playing?  (Read 471905 times)

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Online Sareth

Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2925 on: November 03, 2018, 02:57:36 AM »
My imported copy of Okami HD for Switch came in today (along with volume 40). I could have just downloaded it but I have a strong preference for physical games.

Offline Cyrus Jong

Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2926 on: November 03, 2018, 05:45:46 AM »
Got off my lazy ass to get back on my lazy ass to start playing Nioh for the past week. I've been enjoying it so far. Had to unlearn everything Bloodborne taught me, though, 'cause that was tripping me up a lot. Like the fact that blocking is NOT for chumps, that I DON'T need a shield to block, attacking will NOT heal me, and that in many cases, sprinting is MUCH more preferable to dodging, especially since you can "strafe-sprint." Oh yeah, yeah, yeah, and that I now have to use the face buttons for everything, rather than the shoulder buttons.

Don't really care for the way equipment works, though. The game throws gear at you like it's on clearance, sifting through the dozens upon dozens of items you collect to to see what's better for you is tedious as hell and ends up slowing things down a lot when you want to get back to hunting Youkai, and frankly, the effects are so marginal on your performance that I really don't notice them. Doubt I'll replay this game as religiously as I did for the Soulsborne games (and Salt and Sanctuary), though I hope Team Ninja will fix this in the sequel.

Offline Bleac

Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2927 on: November 03, 2018, 02:40:11 PM »
Doubt I'll replay this game as religiously as I did for the Soulsborne games (and Salt and Sanctuary)

It's interesting to see you liked Salt and Sanctuary more than Nioh. The art style is original and the combat is smooth but the level design feels inadequate to me. It attempts the Dark Souls interconnected world which so many people praise, but because it's a 2D game, it's fundamentally linear and this combination becomes confusing. If I took a break from it and came back after a couple of days I'd have no idea where I am and where I'm supposed to go. Maybe that's just my faulty orientation, but that never happened to me in any souls game, because once I had gone through an area I knew exactly where it was, what was around it and the general direction of things in a 3 dimensional space. In Salt and Sanctuary your field of vision is limited, and because of the 2D side scrolling camera I couldn't get a grasp of the world's dimension and location. I found myself spending more time back tracking and fixing my in game compass than actually progressing. Maybe that's how it was intended and you're supposed to go through the game many times in order to become familiar with the world, which is true in the case of the Souls games as well, but not nearly to this extent. To me it was just confusing and frustrating. I should go back and at least finish it, because it's not a bad game, and I enjoyed the combat aspects, but I don't see myself replaying it religiously.

Offline Aazealh

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Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2928 on: November 03, 2018, 06:44:00 PM »
I played Nioh for 49 hours over the summer. I enjoyed it for a while despite its flaws, but I ended up dropping it at some point because it had just gotten boring. I feel like it's a very "grindy" type of game and that it doesn't have much substance behind the veneer of Japanese lore.

Offline Griffith

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Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2929 on: November 03, 2018, 07:06:45 PM »
My imported copy of Okami HD for Switch came in today (along with volume 40). I could have just downloaded it but I have a strong preference for physical games.

I could NOT get into this game. It's been like a decade of false starts, including a faulty Blockbuster video rental disc, and when I finally got it for my PC the annoying talking sounds in a dialogue heavy game was just too much. Maybe I'll go back someday, but I think Okami might always be one that got away for me.

Got off my lazy ass to get back on my lazy ass to start playing Nioh for the past week. I've been enjoying it so far. Had to unlearn everything Bloodborne taught me, though, 'cause that was tripping me up a lot. Like the fact that blocking is NOT for chumps, that I DON'T need a shield to block, attacking will NOT heal me, and that in many cases, sprinting is MUCH more preferable to dodging, especially since you can "strafe-sprint." Oh yeah, yeah, yeah, and that I now have to use the face buttons for everything, rather than the shoulder buttons.

You don't HAVE to use the face buttons. :carcus: I basically went out of my way to make Nioh play like Dark Souls, and then Bloodborne, at the expense of what the game was trying to do and it paid major dividends for my instincts and overall enjoyment. Sure, switching stances is a little unintuitive when one is a directional arrow and another is a shoulder button, and the only item you have is healing assigned to the top button, and you have to press a face button to go up in a menu and the confirm and back buttons are reversed, but... worth it! :guts:

Don't really care for the way equipment works, though. The game throws gear at you like it's on clearance, sifting through the dozens upon dozens of items you collect to to see what's better for you is tedious as hell and ends up slowing things down a lot when you want to get back to hunting Youkai, and frankly, the effects are so marginal on your performance that I really don't notice them. Doubt I'll replay this game as religiously as I did for the Soulsborne games (and Salt and Sanctuary), though I hope Team Ninja will fix this in the sequel.

Don't waste time on the items, just set the item display to highest level or most recent and equip whichever gives you the best stats and movement. Eventually it's useless anyway once you reach the item level cap (I liked it for the Diablo-esque novelty). Anyway, played it for at least 100 hours and there's still more to do with all the high level end game boss rush shit, but I doubt I'll be going back. It was basically a game I was playing because I couldn't play Bloodborne, and I hadn't even really considered the sequel but I'll probably play it for the same reason once I'm done with Sekiro. I'll give it this though, it's got something going for it beyond being a Souls clone, because I couldn't get with Lords of the Fallen or The Surge like I could this game.

I played Nioh for 49 hours over the summer. I enjoyed it for a while despite its flaws, but I ended up dropping it at some point because it had just gotten boring. I feel like it's a very "grindy" type of game and that it doesn't have much substance behind the veneer of Japanese lore.

The authentic Japanese monster lore is the best fucking part, by far, but it's somewhat tempered by the bizarro world history and bog standard, but ridiculous, plot. And yeah, it's pretty grindy both in the leveling and repetition required for certain bosses. Despite all the extra stances and other features the fighting isn't as loose, free-wheeling or improvisational as Dark Souls. There's a "right way" through many boss encounters to the exclusion of most other possibilities... until later when you respec to spam spells and ninja moves. =)

It's interesting to see you liked Salt and Sanctuary more than Nioh. The art style is original and the combat is smooth but the level design feels inadequate to me. It attempts the Dark Souls interconnected world which so many people praise, but because it's a 2D game, it's fundamentally linear and this combination becomes confusing. If I took a break from it and came back after a couple of days I'd have no idea where I am and where I'm supposed to go. Maybe that's just my faulty orientation, but that never happened to me in any souls game, because once I had gone through an area I knew exactly where it was, what was around it and the general direction of things in a 3 dimensional space. In Salt and Sanctuary your field of vision is limited, and because of the 2D side scrolling camera I couldn't get a grasp of the world's dimension and location. I found myself spending more time back tracking and fixing my in game compass than actually progressing. Maybe that's how it was intended and you're supposed to go through the game many times in order to become familiar with the world, which is true in the case of the Souls games as well, but not nearly to this extent. To me it was just confusing and frustrating. I should go back and at least finish it, because it's not a bad game, and I enjoyed the combat aspects, but I don't see myself replaying it religiously.

I couldn't get into Salt & Sanctuary either, 2D Souls isn't Souls and I wasn't a fan of the art style or getting around either. Speaking of which though...


In Red Dead Redemption II I've gone completely native and turned off all HUD and onscreen displays. I'm in it now! :ganishka:

It's great for inhabiting the world because you really learn the lay of the land instead of just following the tiny GPS or directions (and it turns off all on screen directions too). I have to know where I'm going or check my map, which can make the simplest errands an adventure, but that's kind of the point of this game so I'm embracing it. I mean, when you just follow that GPS it's like you're playing that and you don't even know the town you're riding through for the half dozenth time, so this is better (or I've gone crazy alone out on the plains =). The only drawback is sometimes you can't tell where a chance encounter is coming from (someone yelling for help, etc) or when you're about to walk into a bushwhacking horde of enemies. It's a pretty small price to pay though for the added immersion and beauty.

Offline Cyrus Jong

Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2930 on: November 03, 2018, 09:46:35 PM »
It's interesting to see you liked Salt and Sanctuary more than Nioh. The art style is original and the combat is smooth but the level design feels inadequate to me. It attempts the Dark Souls interconnected world which so many people praise, but because it's a 2D game, it's fundamentally linear and this combination becomes confusing. If I took a break from it and came back after a couple of days I'd have no idea where I am and where I'm supposed to go. Maybe that's just my faulty orientation, but that never happened to me in any souls game, because once I had gone through an area I knew exactly where it was, what was around it and the general direction of things in a 3 dimensional space. In Salt and Sanctuary your field of vision is limited, and because of the 2D side scrolling camera I couldn't get a grasp of the world's dimension and location. I found myself spending more time back tracking and fixing my in game compass than actually progressing. Maybe that's how it was intended and you're supposed to go through the game many times in order to become familiar with the world, which is true in the case of the Souls games as well, but not nearly to this extent. To me it was just confusing and frustrating. I should go back and at least finish it, because it's not a bad game, and I enjoyed the combat aspects, but I don't see myself replaying it religiously.

Sounds like a personal issue, because orienting myself was never a problem for me in the 2D format. Hilariously, this is more of an issue I suffer from in Nioh. The levels tend to get pretty maze-like in design, and they encourage you to explore them in detail in order to get the "collectibles" that are strewn about, like the Kodama or the Hiragumo Fragments in the Spider Nest Castle level. Which is fine, but when you're running around these places looking for those needles in the haystack after you've unlocked every shortcut and discovered every shrine, it's easy to get lost in and find your way back the way you came (and heaven forbid you die after you've collected a huge surplus of Amrita :magni:). And because of that, I don't ever have the guts to use the shrines because then I'll have trouble finding my way back to the one right next to the boss :femto:!

It doesn't help that a lot of the levels feel very samey; the second half of "The Spirit Stone Slumbers" in particular was a major offender of this. Whoever thought it was a good idea to set a mission inside an underground tomb consisting entirely of rectangular rooms connected by square hallways filled to the brim with the same Sentry statues everywhere, and where everything is drab grey-green in color needs to be shot. The lack of landmarks in this sea of monotony means it's nigh impossible to tell if you're covering new ground or accidentally backtracking, and it's just boring as hell to look at.

I played Nioh for 49 hours over the summer. I enjoyed it for a while despite its flaws, but I ended up dropping it at some point because it had just gotten boring. I feel like it's a very "grindy" type of game and that it doesn't have much substance behind the veneer of Japanese lore.

The Japanese lore feels awfully wasted to me. I was completely onboard with the premise. I mean, a historical fantasy story set in 17th Century Japan, where you kick spiritual ass and take names as one of the first European samurai? Sounds awesome! Except...everything feels so disconnected. There's no discernible reason for why anything is happening in the plot, characters just kind of come and go, and William has no real character or motivation that I can see. I think he's trying to rescue that guardian spirit of his who was kidnapped at the beginning, but I can't be sure...most of the time, he just seems to be looking indifferent to everything around him. He honestly could have just been your typical mute, blank slate RPG protagonist and it wouldn't have made a difference. Team Ninja were excited about making Dark Souls in a Shinto-colored package, I'll give them that; but it doesn't seem like they gave any real thought to it outside the aesthetics.

You don't HAVE to use the face buttons. :carcus: I basically went out of my way to make Nioh play like Dark Souls, and then Bloodborne, at the expense of what the game was trying to do and it paid major dividends for my instincts and overall enjoyment. Sure, switching stances is a little unintuitive when one is a directional arrow and another is a shoulder button, and the only item you have is healing assigned to the top button, and you have to press a face button to go up in a menu and the confirm and back buttons are reversed, but... worth it! :guts:

Thanks for the suggestion, but my muscle memory's adjusted, so I think I'll get by with the default control scheme. Now I just need to worry when I get back to Soulsborne, and start wondering why I'm munching grass, chugging Estus, or jamming a syringe into my leg when I should be chopping the enemy. :ganishka:

Offline Bleac

Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2931 on: November 04, 2018, 01:54:57 AM »
In Red Dead Redemption II I've gone completely native and turned off all HUD and onscreen displays. I'm in it now! :ganishka:

It's great for inhabiting the world because you really learn the lay of the land instead of just following the tiny GPS or directions (and it turns off all on screen directions too). I have to know where I'm going or check my map, which can make the simplest errands an adventure, but that's kind of the point of this game so I'm embracing it. I mean, when you just follow that GPS it's like you're playing that and you don't even know the town you're riding through for the half dozenth time, so this is better (or I've gone crazy alone out on the plains =). The only drawback is sometimes you can't tell where a chance encounter is coming from (someone yelling for help, etc) or when you're about to walk into a bushwhacking horde of enemies. It's a pretty small price to pay though for the added immersion and beauty.

I used the same approach while playing the Witcher 3 and I definitely understand what you're saying. Paying more attention to the game world for a change, especially in cases where it's full of details and realism such as in RDR2 is a viable and exciting way to go about it. You start to notice all the clues and clever hints that were put in there for you to see but which can be easily overlooked due to the presence of HUD elements.

However, open worlds are a totally different breed from the style of world building that goes into Souls games and Salt and Sanctuary respectively. There are no maps so the world needs to be more reliably structured, so that you can remember where things are in accordance to one another and have landmarks, places that you know how to get to which lead to other places you're not fully accustomed to yet. I don't know if Salt and Sanctuary failed to do that or if it's just the 2D restriction that makes it seem so, but I don't think a Souls-like world design fits that game either way.

Sounds like a personal issue, because orienting myself was never a problem for me in the 2D format.

I'm sure a big part of the problem is my natural inclination towards 3D for orientation but I believe the game is also to blame to some extent (basically what I said to Griffith above)

It doesn't help that a lot of the levels feel very samey; the second half of "The Spirit Stone Slumbers" in particular was a major offender of this. Whoever thought it was a good idea to set a mission inside an underground tomb consisting entirely of rectangular rooms connected by square hallways filled to the brim with the same Sentry statues everywhere, and where everything is drab grey-green in color needs to be shot. The lack of landmarks in this sea of monotony means it's nigh impossible to tell if you're covering new ground or accidentally backtracking, and it's just boring as hell to look at.

I can actually think of a couple similar locations in Souls games such as the sewer portion of the Depths, the underground well in the Painted World and the Tomb of Giants in DkS 1, The Gutter (fuck that place man) and Shaded Woods in DkS 2 and the lower part of the Smouldering Lake in DkS 3. All of the aforementioned have more or less labyrinth like designs and I think the expectation is that the average player will die and go back and try a different path until they have it all figured out. If it's annoying and a hindrance that's how you know it serves its purpose I guess.

Offline Rhombaad

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Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2932 on: November 05, 2018, 04:36:01 PM »
I finished Final Fantasy IV this morning. I'm glad I played it again; I'd forgotten a lot. While no where near as advanced as Final Fantasy VI, it was still fun to play with a compelling story.

Next up: Sonic the Hedgehog for Game Gear, via the 3DS Virtual Console.

Offline Branded_Rick

Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2933 on: November 11, 2018, 03:24:15 AM »
I finished Bully this morning. It was an overall fun game with a few hiccups.

Offline Skeleton

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Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2934 on: November 13, 2018, 04:43:35 AM »
I finished Bully this morning. It was an overall fun game with a few hiccups.

Itís great to see you enjoyed Bully! I absolutely love that game.

Offline Rhombaad

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Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2935 on: November 14, 2018, 12:45:24 PM »
I beat Sonic and Mega Man 4. I think Iím turning into a Mega Man fanboy. Iíd heard Mega Man 4 wasnít as good as the first three because of the addition of the Mega Buster, but I loved it. I continue to be amazed at what companies were able to do on an 8-bit system.

Next up is Wing Commander: The Secret Missions 2 - Crusade!


Offline Walter

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Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2936 on: November 18, 2018, 03:01:15 PM »
I put about 25 hours into Moonlighter on Switch over the last week. A rogue-like /dungeon crawler, with a look and design similar to LoZ: Minish Cap. The hook is you are a merchant pillaging a dungeon to sell its wares. The shopkeeper aspect, pricing the items and driving the market demand, is the other half of the game and the loop.

It also has some incredible attention to detail, both in animation and sound design. For example, for the town theme, when you walk over to individual shops (5 in the game), it seamlessly shifts to a variation of the theme played with instruments that suit the personís shop. Percussion/clanging for the blacksmith; harpsichord/fancy shit for the uppity guy who only sells expensive shit.

Speaking of music, I also got a sound bar with a sub-woofer, and this game surprisingly shows it off quite well. The music is really phenomenal, probably its most noteworthy aspect aside from the animations. Take a listen to the 2nd dungeon music:
 https://davidfennmusic.bandcamp.com/track/macadamia-mayhem

Having just finished it, I'm sad to say that it was ultimately a little disappointing. The overall gameplay loop is fun (kill, loot, sort items, strategically port back, price and sell loot, buy/upgrade weapons, repeat), but the game fails to up the ante as you continue to get more proficient. Loot becomes more valuable, but so do the items you need. Enemies get more health and do more damage. Predictable shit, but no creative variations after the first dungeon. There are unique enemies per dungeon, but most are variations on the ones you've already encountered. The skill ceiling is too low, so that once you've mastered a few of the basics, exploring and battling becomes a matter of time investment rather than skill. This is all a travesty because the game is gorgeous and sounds amazing.

As a result, it's yet another indie game which has so many components of greatness, but something in the way itís stitched together falls short. Good vision, good ideas, but its assembly and execution just doesn't match the standards youíd expect. Still a blast though, and I'd definitely recommend it for $10-15.

---

In bigger news I suppose, I just plunked down cash for a PS4 (non pro, don't hassle me!), and I plan to finally play Last Guardian, Bloodborne, Last of Us, and of course Red Dead 2 sometime this Christmas.
:femto: :slan: :ubik:

Offline Johnstantine

Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2937 on: November 18, 2018, 04:13:58 PM »
Finally played Last of Us. I've never been so bored with gameplay while simultaneously in love with the characters.

Definitely the most boring game from Naughty Dog, but it was still really enjoyable.

Offline MrFlibble

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Re: What Are You Playing?
« Reply #2938 on: Today at 10:39:06 AM »
Been playing FOTNS: City of Paradise. I'm not sure how I feel about fusing Yakuza game mechanics with the brutal world of Fist of the North Star, Kenshiro never seemed the type of person to be constrained by societal norms, especially since Houkuto Shinken makes him godlike.