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Messages - Griffith

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Anime Asylum / Re: Castlevania showrunner wants to animate Berserk
« on: March 18, 2019, 12:30:37 AM »
Maybe Miura is masochistic enough to direct it himself after he finishes the manga. 

His choice in creative partners on these adaptations is proof enough of masochism. :carcus:

Pictured: The new producer, director and showrunner of the next Berserk adaptation.

Pictured: Us.

Movies, TV, Books & Music / Re: True Detective
« on: March 12, 2019, 06:49:44 AM »
Yeah I think this must be where we differ. Because as great as Season 1 was, I never thought it was necessarily "the peak" to where the show could go.

Well, I think they could go deeper with those original characters and actually break the conspiracy plot, but even if they did and it was richer, deeper and more genuine I don't think there's any way it has the same viewing impact as the first go around. It's the same catch 22 with subsequent seasons that are either too much or not enough like the original, and both in the case of season 3. In any case we're apt to reject it.

And even with the odds against it, I gave S3 a fair shake, even fairly late in the game, hoping it would come together. Nope.

I got dragged into it, so fortunately I could be pleasantly surprised it wasn't like season 2 and at least resembled a story that could fit in next to the original (this actually seemed like a story that would be in a detective anthology). I think this would have been much better as the second season because it's good enough to be a decent smaller scale followup but not good enough to somehow save or redeem the whole damn thing, which unfortunately is what fell on its shoulders for a lot of people.

Indeed. Because of that ambiguity at the doctor's, even right up to The Big Boss Conversation, I was expecting some kind of supernatural nonsense: "He sprayed me with toxic African gas and now my memories are fading away!" (Okay I did this to myself, didn't I?)


I just thought it was all a bunch of BS anyway, thus why I was never disappointed. Particularly when it all turns out to literally be BS! Good call, Pizzalotto, know your limits and lean into it.

Yep, that moment in Bones was one of the biggest cop-outs I've ever seen on television. It was pretty funny. That's where my wife  stopped watching, and thus where I did too  :ganishka:. What was it, ~6 seasons of teasing, and then when the moment finally presents itself, the writers were too limp-dicked to go all the way with it. It's a clear-cut example of a show failing to roll with substantial character relationship changes, because they'd upset the delicate syndicated balance. The absolute worst.

I'll never forget that breakfast scene, what a betrayal. You guys didn't miss much because it was of course a meandering, tensionless bore after that. I don't even get the reasoning behind that decision other than they copped out like you said.

I should give it another straight-through go around, because I watched much of the early seasons of that show as it was airing, still a teenager. And I'll tell you, "event television" was not really much of a thing back then for me. Particularly when your only access to HBO is your girlfriend's dad's house  :badbone: As a result, I grew to love all the characters, but when they try to slide straight into actual drama I got lost really quickly. "Okay so Tony's the DiMeo crime family boss, right? And the Lupertazzi boss just phoned Tony to do ... what exactly? To who? What happened to pussy?"

It wasn't so different for me, I watched it as a youngster like it was just the mob hit of the week or something, not really getting the intricacies of what was going on and then by the end of the series it was just too much baggage with that, "UGH, all this talking! THAT'S the ending!?" So later I figured it was decent in its time but would probably feel a bit dated compared to the heavy hitters that came after, but no, I was shocked by how good it was; it made even my beloved Breaking Bad look thin and The Wire stiff.

Movies, TV, Books & Music / Re: True Detective
« on: March 12, 2019, 12:06:56 AM »
It's not that nothing can touch it. It's that seasons 2-3 don't even come close. And given that this is all material from the same writer, I think it's fair and natural to compare the shows against each other in terms of their relative quality.
Well, it's kind of difficult not to compare it to the first season since it has been advertised as "Season 3 of True Detective (you know, that show with McConaughey and Woody Harrelson that you all loved so much).

I know WHY you'd compare two seasons of the same anthology, but in this case the first season was a singular, transcendent show with movie stars and, even more unheard of, the same visionary director doing the entire run. It was like an 8 hour film, and so popular it became like an event and a bonifide pop culture touchstone and phenomenon. My point is it was never going to be like that again even if they ran all the same cast and crew back for season 2, so it's unrealistic to me to use the very best they could have ever hoped to do as a baseline rather than the presumed pinnacle, and crazy to think they should top it (season 2 is what you get when you try). Speaking of, while we're comparing them, the previous season was a hot mess, so I wouldn't lump season 3's toned down effort in with that either.

Maybe I'm actually more cynical here because, no matter who the creator or auteur, I always assume they're going to fuck it up because doing great work is hard enough, and doing it consistently is unrealistic.

It's the latter. Its attempts to seem bigger than it is ring hollow.

I see this differently because I feel like it wasn't about those pretentions, but was more introverted and actually less hollow than all the true detectiving. Now, maybe it didn't live up to that either because Wayne was still a little inscrutable in the end (and not because he was so deep =).

Well, it felt to me like they were packaging it as something more grandiose, but eventually settled on just Alzheimer's.

It actually bugged me that they were somewhat vague about his condition because it struck me as a licence to do whatever without having to adhere to any rules.

Hey Bones is a neat show, too! But it's also not trying to be something it's not.

I can't forgive them for cheating us out of the season of them actually getting together.

I am like the worst person to be asking this of. There are only about 2-3 shows that I truly love, and the rest just fill time. As for Sopranos, I would probably take it down a peg at this point in my life.

For me it actually went up a peg upon rewatching. There was just too much series/pop culture baggage for viewers by the end, but upon review it was really good throughout and kicked sand on The Wire or Breaking Bad or whatever. Just check out season 1 again sometime, thematically it's like a novel.

Movies, TV, Books & Music / Re: True Detective
« on: March 11, 2019, 03:37:37 PM »
Boy was I wrong for trying out bang out "a quick reply" above.

I think the problem I have with that reasoning is that the show does not present itself as "standard procedural fare," which you're rating as its strength. It deflated on the expectations it created for itself. We get all dressed up for HBO Prom, and then our date takes us to Waffle House and bones us in the alley. Then has the audacity to ponder the malleability of time.

Well, there we go, are we judging it by what it is, or by some vaguely lofty standard or expectation supposedly set by the first season? Speaking of prom night metaphors, how long are we as viewers supposed to pine for and chase that True Detective season 1 feeling like it was the show we lost our virginity to or something. As you say below, it wasn't like the be all, end all, but a really cool show, yet we talk about it like nothing can touch it while simultaneously giving it backhanded compliments.

It doesn't truly ever let go of those pretenses, either. You're giving a pass to moments like that schlocky circular shot of time-traveling Wayne and Roland headed to meet Mr. June. (It's all coming together!!! TIME IS A FLAT CIRCLE!) They're constantly reaching for something bigger in this show, and there's just nothing there to grab onto.

Is the problem the show isn't pretentious enough, or too pretentious, or doesn't live up to it's pretensions (a favorite complaint of mine)? I think the goofy time stuff is a fine trope for this season, particularly given Wayne's condition and what it's modestly saying about their lives ultimately. The revelation that this was more about them and their personal lives all along was a fair twist with that gimmick. I actually thought that made it a lot more humane and less pretentious than it let on, almost too sentimental even, which was a welcome thing since it clearly had given more attention to that than the meat of the crime.

Also, I don't regard Season 1 as "transcendent."  The esteem I hold it in equates to "hey that was a neat show."

Then why are we even talking about it all these years later or care if Nic Pizzalotto is good writer or not? By that standard this was merely a "neat show" too (and much less investment than most neat shows; Better Call Saul is apparently like 4 seasons into being neat). Hell, junk food Bones was a "neat show." :ganishka:

BTW, we should be arguing about this while walking in the woods at night until we ironically trip over a gruesome crime scene and start screaming like babies. Our fandom would be thoroughly lampooned!

Give me a couple transcendent show examples; is first season of The Sopranos okay or could they have tried harder? :iva:

I think most people seem to like it, based on reviews I've read. It just did absolutely nothing for me.

I listened to some discussions of it later on that were mostly theory based (boy were they nonplussed by the finale) but I guess the only reviews I've read are here where it was regarded as pretty disappointing or the worst. I didn't get that because I was already disappointed with the idea going in, liked the early atmosphere, became less enamored as it dragged instead of taking off, didn't see the big crime/conspiracy payoff really being there, and so was ultimately happy with the left turn it took. It helped that because I didn't get all into the conspiracy theories I was following it by the more traditional story beats that it ultimately culminated with, "Hey, Wayne was an asshole that became less of an asshole, and he solved the case... that's nice." If I had been watching it with my literal and figurative detective hat on I probably would have felt more betrayed.

Movies, TV, Books & Music / Re: True Detective
« on: March 11, 2019, 02:31:09 PM »
I thought it was actually a weak spot that they were trying to emulate Season 1. It felt like the season's structure was mapped out in a board room ("include these bullet points and we're good to go! add a lawn guy in there too -- for our really sharp viewers!" :troll: ) And yet when I reflect on Season 1, I certainly am not thinking about the case. It's all character moments. So what I was looking for here wasn't necessarily a repeat, but a return to quality writing, quality characters that stuck with you after the show was over. Wayne and Roland each had their great moments, but that momentum seemed to die between scenes instead of being bigger than the show itself (like I felt with Marty and Cole). Any nostalgia over Season 1 is merely "Remember when it was good?" Because this wasn't that.

"Hey, remember that transcendent one off season of television where big charismatic movie stars perfectly wed themselves to sharp writing and beautiful directorial vision to create a hypnotic neo-noir crime classic? This wasn't that..." And therefore is a pile of shit? =)

I agree I would have preferred they truly recaptured the magic of season 1 somehow instead of spring-boarding off it, but they pretty much dropped that pretense after the first couple episodes and the departure of Saulnier behind the camera. I think that hurt some of the attempts at more... poetic visual moments the show went for later because it became more standard procedural fare in the interim. Stuff that had that dreamy quality and atmosphere early on became prosaic bickering in offices or cars later. My point isn't that this was great, but it was largely fine and good with some drag in the middle, and not some insult to the True Detective name because that name is basically 1 1/2 seasons of good TV, and this was the half, so if anything it helped stabilize the show after the truly embarrassing season 2 debacle. Maybe it helped that I was totally out on this season before it started and my wife basically made me watch it, so my expectations going in were below zero.

Movies, TV, Books & Music / Re: True Detective
« on: March 11, 2019, 06:19:53 AM »
Unfortunately they missed, by a big margin, what made the first season so good, that being the complex and tumultuous relation between the the two main characters (which here was limited to almost non-existent throughout most of the series) and also the various philosophical and existential issues that were constantly being addressed and explored, often times as a consequence of this conflict of personality between the two, and their world view.

In other words, the script was extremely weak, there were a couple of good exchanges early on, but nothing evolved beyond that point. The writing and vision behind this season were simply nowhere near what I expected from Pizzolatto, which was disappointing. It constantly felt like a dumbed down, lobotomized almost, wannabe version of season 1, lacking all manner or ingenuity and following a safe trajectory until the end.

Counterpoint: Is it really better to copy, redo and double down on everything about season 1, particularly the conversational sizzle or philosophical window dressing? I honestly think those are highly overrated parts of the show. Same for the VAST conspiracy stuff. Isn't that actually the lame thing to keep doing instead of just a petty crime that got WAY out of hand like a lot of kidnappings/murders (and it was still a pretty big conspiracy by real life standards)? I feel like the show was better served for ultimately how it was different from season 1 while playing with our expectations, particularly with Wayne's TV interview (you think he's just not showing his cards, but he actually knows there's nothing to the conspiracy shit =). I'm not trying to be an apologist for this season, it's definitely flawed and not special like the original, but a lot of the stuff people are saying is the worst about it, and should be more like season 1, is what actually I find more redeeming. Conversely, when people suggest they ape more season 1 stuff I feel like I'm taking crazy pills because that'd be even more hacky.

I believe this season fell short in part because it was associated with the True Detective name, which season 1 set such a high standard for it's really difficult to come close, and the similarities only end up doing more harm than good by constantly reminding you of the superior version. If you were to dissociate it from the franchise and show it to someone who's never seen season 1, I think it would pass as an overall decent crime series.

I definitely agree with that, but we shouldn't expect that, and I liked that they didn't try topping the transcendent original at its own game but used that expectation to misdirect us while telling a very different kind of story. Again, if people want what made the first season so great again, then the show should just bring back those characters and actors, because them selling that dialogue was the lion's share of it, not the superior plotting or philosophy.

Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: March 05, 2019, 08:24:14 PM »
Yeah the reason I asked is because I think for these types of games, going for the harder modes makes it so you need to be a little more technical/strategic with how you approach enemies. It might not fix it for you though, but I did find it challenging at times during my own playthrough.

I can definitely see that even in normal, and I'm not just face rolling or button mashing these enemies or anything either, but my philosophy is that the standard difficulty should be the best represention of the game as they want to present it, it IS the game, and the other modes should artificially increase or decrease that difficulty rather than it truly changing the mechanics of the core game ("here's the REAL game!") Unfortunately, while some games explicitly follow this philosophy, more grade on such a curve that standard is basically easy mode going by a more respectable name. In this case I could tell the developers were more interested in me experiencing this awesome boss fight than it kicking my ass. It's like a conflict of interest where the difficulty of the boss is like the game's own obstacle to the cool shit it wants to show me. =)

Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: March 05, 2019, 03:39:02 PM »
What difficulty setting are you playing in? The higher ones make the game a non-trivial challenge in my experience.

I play the default first and go from there. I mean, it's not that it can't be challenging, but so far the hardest enemies have been the ones that you portal in or whatever, and they're harder by a long shot. Also, and I'm not complaining, but the checkpoints and such make dying almost a convenience, "Oh, I'm back where I was in the boss fight... with full health!" The biggest, coolest boss so far felt kind of perfunctory if that makes sense, like the game really didn't want me to lose and was on my side the whole time. The fix was in for me. =)

I don't know, something I've noticed about big, cinematic games in general lately is you get a little too much mileage out of your button presses. Like some of these "moves" might as well be quick time events because you'll push a button and it basically turns into a mini-cutscene of you kicking someone's ass, which is cool, but a little phony too (like if in Mario Bros you pushed the attack button and Mario just automatically jumped on and killed the nearest Goomba in range with no more input from you =). For contrast, in SotC, when you rode your horse next to a Colossi and jumped from it on to the Colossi's back or appendage, it really felt like you were controlling the action, awkwardness and all, and not vice versa because you were just applying the general controls in an unusual combination for that specific situation, and it felt like a genuine stretch because it was. Now there's so many contextual control schemes and streamlining that you basically just hit the action button to do anything. RDR2 for example, you can do SO MANY THINGS in that game supposedly, but there's really only so many buttons and combinations to input, so you're not so much assuming direct control to perform most of those actions manually as much as you're directing the game to perform those actions for you.

Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: March 05, 2019, 06:57:42 AM »
This game is still on my to-do list, but as I understand it, it takes about 3h to open up. Or are you past that already?

Well, I got to a point where a travel mechanic opened up another area and presumably more from there. Seems very much like going to different worlds/levels via a central hub... like Demon's Souls. But for now I'm still navigating and scaling my home world and I don't know how involved this mechanic will become, like a plot point or a dominant feature where you're constantly world hoppin'. So far it's been the former.

Anyway, I ran into a pretty epic boss fight/set piece that was quite the fun and exhilirating spectacle... but again not so difficult (I got more into the combat powers, which made things that much easier). Feels more like the game wants me to experience watching Kratos overcome awesome challenges than have me work too hard to do it myself. The other most memorable moment was also a largely passive set piece. I don't know what that means good or bad, but it's the impression I'm left with; more roller coaster ride than high performance vehicle. Still, eye opening to the game's potential to awe and ultimately fun if a little high on empty calories at this point. It's growing on me.

Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: March 04, 2019, 04:33:07 PM »
God Dad of War, but only barely. This is the platonic ideal of "game time" where I play a little bit or do a modest section every day or so, but have no passion or compulsion to play, and little joy doing so (but it's healthier than playing RE2 all night =). Maybe I'm playing it too much like a Souls game, but it's not hard so I haven't had need to dive into the different combat elements either and there's an awful lot of menu in that vein. Even if you get roughed up you can pretty much kite everything to death with your axe and arrows as a last resort. Anyway, I'm not out on it yet, but I sure wish it would take things to the next level because so far it strikes me as slow and repetitive as hell and I've fought a variation of the same boss three times already so the thought of continuing like this for however many hours I have ahead of me sounds interminable.

Movies, TV, Books & Music / Re: True Detective
« on: February 26, 2019, 03:47:36 PM »
Yeah, I found him to be one of the more interesting characters and there is no doubt he did well in his performance,but I think Mahershala Ali deserves some praise did just as good and a few of the other actors did well too

Acting was a big strong point, and did a lot to help carry the atmosphere early on and keep the show afloat during those midseason doldrums. Ali's part ended up being pretty thankless compared to Dorff's. He had to be in like every scene and do all this narrative heavy lifting too; a lot of telling rather than showing who he was like Roland.

they where just not in a great true detective season put these same actors in a season of true detective that is just as good as s1 and it would be great however the way this show is going I don't think we would ever get something that can rival s1.
I don't know about that one I feel like that would take away from the theme they where trying to show at the end of s1 on how you can't possibly stop all the evil in the world you can only do your best and stop as much as you can but you will never truly put a stop to it all. It gives us a bittersweet ending but an ending that is realistic and if looked at right hopefull as the dark may still have a firm grasp on the world but the light is starting to shine through and in Rust eyes, the lights winning. Now I'm not complaining about a season of Rust in his past as an undercover narcotics detective now that would be interesting and possibly awesome if done right.

I get not wanting to ruin it or jump the shark, but it's not like it was such sacred ground or so perfect they can't risk revisiting it. I mean, their cell phones immediately stopped working and they still chased the slasher into his haunted horror lair without backup like in every bad horror movie. A lot of the philosophy was just as muddled as some of the themes this season and the whole, "you don't get to get them all" was a cop-out so the show never had to lay out all its cards. I'm not saying this because that stuff actually bothers me about that season, but just pointing out its success wasn't owed to any sort of flawlessness, but more its satisfying brand of messiness.

I don't necessarily need it to be Rust and Marty all over again (but hey, I wouldn't thumb my nose at it) I just want a Moneyed Noir show that only HBO seems capable of delivering. And I feel like Pizzolatto has already played all of his cards at this point, particularly after I read his book (Galveston, which was lame).

Yeah, I don't know what else he has to say after that anti-true detective True Detective finale, because it almost certainly was meant to thumb its nose at the whole thing and flip it on its head, which I'm actually ok with if you don't have the goods otherwise, better than another half-baked conspiracy (and it doesn't always have to be about that). It's one thing to blow people's minds with the potential of a big conspiracy or the ambition of multiple timelines coming together, but to actually lay it all out in the end and still impress people is another. I still don't think the show has done the latter yet, and that would be the move with a Rust and Marty redux.

Movies, TV, Books & Music / Re: True Detective
« on: February 26, 2019, 06:57:44 AM »
Welp, I enjoyed this one a lot more than the last season for obvious reasons, and seemingly more than you guys. Mahershala Ali and Dorff were great, it started strong, return to form and all that shit, but it lost steam quickly as it went along going from slow and hypnotic to slow and redundant, with Wayne becoming less interesting by the decade. So, I tempered my expectations early and kind of saw where it was going and that it wasn't gonna be some big crazy thing like people always want to believe ("what if, like, the detective himself did it, maaaan!?"). But that's a good thing, I'm glad they didn't go full conspiracy and it was just a smaller, more introverted story. The theme the finale puncuated for the season was the importance of family, one's investment in it, losing or holding on to it, yearning for it, etc. Even at Wayne's bitter asshole apex in the 90s when it didn't seem like he cared, he ultimately did the right thing for his wife and family every time and it paid off. Even Roland, whose only family was his friend that didn't realize it, got to enjoy the fruit of that, and so it worked out for everybody in the end... while still managing to feel cheap and unsatisfying. :ganishka:

On that note, my main gripes are the implication Henry could give Julie up to the obnoxious true crime host, though at least it's a hope that if the truth eventually comes out Wayne will be validated, but Roland should have had a chance to meet Julie on screen and tell her about Tom. Wasted opportunity. Oh yeah, and of course Wayne didn't write down that she was alive or tell Henry or Roland despite knowing how crucial this was every step of the way before that. Eh, but it's fine, like I said, it clearly was what it was a few episodes ago, which is fine for 8 well acted, intriguing, but ultimately not very substantial episodes. Episodes 1-3 were pretty good, 4-5, directed by Pizzolatto, dipped, 6-7 picked up the pace again, with the end of 6 maybe the highlight of the season, and 8... YMMV. If you wanted a grandiose payoff though, which 7 still left wide open, this was not it. Probably not a good idea to completely switch gears in the finale. Plot twist: It was a mundane story about a forgetful old man all along! =)

I've got the monumental solution to HBO's True Detective problem: Drop Nic Pizzolatto. Anthology noir can be cool. It isn't cool with this guy at the helm.

It's kind of a catch 22 to want one without the other. It was cool with him when everybody liked it and thought it was worthwhile in the first place, he's responsible for that too, but if he's never getting close to that again...

I don't think it's such a problem for them though, and it's probably better they let the show sink or swim with the creator regardless. If it is a problem, just cancel it and have another detective show. There's no shortage of them already and plenty of people just as or more qualified to do it, but it'd be weird to try to usurp the brand if it's so bad now anyway.

If people want them to recapture the magic, which we were clearly dancing around with here, just bring back Matt, Woody, and Fukunaga and take down The Yellow King Cult for good; they left meat on that bone, but seem to be scared to touch it (probably with good reason). But, if we can't move on, and why would we, those characters and stories were more compelling than these; so, you gotta risk face-planting playing with them again rather than keeping them sealed in a perfect bubble from five years ago because it wasn't perfect anyway, so just let us enjoy them again. It's not sacred. It's like if you wrote a popular book with those characters and people loved and them and so... you never wrote another book with them again. That's not how popular book or TV series work. =)

Manga Mausoleum / Re: Dark Horse Releases "Deluxe" Berserk Edition
« on: February 16, 2019, 05:56:38 AM »
So, they only show it for a second, but this was basically my litmus test for the whole thing being potentially worthwhile:

FAILURE! :stop:

Video Games / Re: Games to look forward to!
« on: February 15, 2019, 07:11:19 PM »
By the way, check out this Japanese TV commercial for the game that aired in 1993:

Wow, it was all part of the plan! :guts:

Video Games / Re: Games to look forward to!
« on: February 15, 2019, 05:23:32 PM »
I like the look of Link's Awakening. This Mii Plaza joke has me remembering when Wind Waker came out and people thought it was too cartoony/for kids.

Or when Minish Cap came out! :carcus: Anyway, the ultimate quality of the game and that style notwithstanding; it was! They turned off half the fanbase. :ganishka: There's lots of reasons OoT and Twilight Princess after it sold a gazillion copies, but part of it is the appeal of the art design, which was also fantastic if not as unique and iconic. I thought they did a fine job threading the needle with Skyward Sword and perfected it with BoTW. Hell, do something more with cel-shading, that's what was great about WW anyway. Make Link and his environment and enemies appear exactly as they did in the Link's Awakening instruction manual! How cool would that be (I've basically been waiting years for this =)?

This looks like a whole world made out of miniatures. I think that's a pretty cool idea, for everything to look very solid and hand-crafted.

Check out how the lighting shows off the texture on each tile.

That's cool, it can be done well of course, but however they dress up some of the graphical details I'm just not a fan of the overall design, and my cynical ass also can't help but interpret it as a cheap gimmick, basically. Like, this indicates to me it clearly isn't their best effort, and while that's fine for a remake, I would have preferred a different direction with the opportunity to do something with it you might not in a main game, especially since it theoretically won't be too big as a ported portable (sure doesn't look like they're going the RE2 route, anyway).

And jokes aside I do find the whole almost plastic toy-like design of the game interesting and definitely innovative.

What about Yoshi's Story and LittleBigPlanet to name a couple? Also, explicitly mentioning the toy aspect I can't help but think, "GET THE TOY LINK AMIIBO TOY TO GO WITH YOUR CARTOON LINK AMIIBO TOY AND MORE SERIOUS CARTOON LINK AMIIBO TOY!" I'm clearly wrong about this being bad for business as far as the fanbase is concerned now. We all made our choices long ago. I'm mostly peeved that now I have to buy a Switch for a game that I think looks cheap. =)

Video Games / Re: Games to look forward to!
« on: February 15, 2019, 04:40:19 AM »
Nintendo is remaking Zelda: Link's Awakening for Switch. Due out later this year:

I was excited when I was hoping the animated opening was reflective of the style they were going for in game rather than Mii Plaza. =)

It pales next to Link's Awakening, but the sequel to Hollow Knight looks neat.

Well, looks like quite a bit more of the same, and I'm not a big fan of promoting a supporting character to main protagonist in a sequel. I needed at least a HINT of something expanding on the fate of The Knight. :guts:

Video Games / Re: Digitally Distributed PC games ON SALE Thread
« on: February 08, 2019, 03:22:15 PM »
I'm tempted yet again to get that last Tomb Raider for half off, especially so I have something to play in the PC room (totally regret not getting RE2 on PC for that reason and will now only buy PS4 exclusives on PS4... at least until I see how Sekiro runs on my rig =).

I have tried so incredibly hard to get into this game, but for the life of me I cannot get past like 20 hours of gameplay.

That's more than the 45 minutes I gave it! To be fair, the game probably only actually let me play for 10 minutes and it was shitty tutorials, so there's lots of blame to go around. I mean, if you have to put in 20 hours just to get into a game, is it your fault? Resident Evil 7 was one of my favorite games last year, and I think I played it for 12 hours. It took me 11 hours to beat Bioshock Infinite yet it loomed plenty large. I love a game I can get lost in for a hundred hours as much as the next guy, but if it's NOT that game for me I'd much prefer an economical 10-20 hour campaign and then I can decide if I want to go crazy and play it forever. I've put at least 25 hours into the new RE2, but spread across various campaigns.

Site & Forum News / Re: BERSERK emoticons!
« on: February 05, 2019, 05:50:56 AM »
I'm very proud that Zodd STOP finally made the roster, he was a late bloomer.

Sometimes he's long winded too. :guts:

Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: February 04, 2019, 03:14:17 AM »
Haha, there's an S+ now? I guess it stands for what the old S used to? If so, the unbreakable knife probably won't help all that much. :magni:

Yeah, you really just need to run and gun... perfectly.

Yeah, I think I would have liked that better.

I'll make my final verdict when I complete the Bs, I mean I guess it could be okay as long as they don't do anymore "editing," which was ridiculous (just add a half hour of zombie fighting in the street beforehand). It really feels like they picked the most half measured approach of modifying their scenarios to be "2nd" thoughm instead of just designing them to work concurrently no matter what; which actually better achieves their goal of eliminating redundancy without sacrificing anything or creating these lesser versions of their campaigns (which is actually even MORE redundant scenarios to play). Maybe I'll come around to them as a more is more thing, "See the version of their campaigns where Claire of Leon are late!" I am a sucker for this shit. =)

Sounds like a mess. :ganishka:

Yeah, it was worse than you think too, like I managed to run up a box behind a zombie, like over him, but couldn't pick up the item I needed to grab (large gear), and wasted so much time I could have escaped trying and then I got bit anyway. Fucking Hell. Was no better when I had to go through the 3 zombies in the library to use the jack and move the shelves with Mr. X on my ass. I think I took him on three laps around the police station, wasted two grenades (literally used one by mistake instead slashing with the knife =) and like 100 rounds of SMG spray on those fuckers because as soon as I engaged them he'd come right to me, even when I tried sneaking around. Ugh, anyway, screw it, it's done, I still got plenty of ammo and more health than I did before. To the Orphanage!

Pfff, I liked Leon in RE2 back in the day, but neither he nor Claire are the real S.T.A.R.S. of the franchise! (see what I did there)

Of course, you're right, how could I forget the franchise's real S.T.A.R player:

Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: February 03, 2019, 04:03:57 AM »
Yeah I'm kind of on a little break myself, while at the same time considering to try and get the Frugalist achievement (no healing) on my Claire A run.

All I care about is getting the unbreakable knife (turns out I was actively ignoring what leads to it :schierke:). That thing is like an invitation to attempt an S+ Hardcore run. :carcus:

Yeah, I have to say, one of the most disappointing aspects of this game is how half-assed the "zapping" is. The original game wasn't perfect by any means, but they at least made it clear you were going after someone else. The environment had changed, things had evolved, there was a new threat, etc. Vastly superior to what they've done here, which is to simply reuse (and barely mix up) 95% of the game, occasionally switch G for Tyrant or vice versa in the boss fights, and change some cutscenes.

Yeah, I don't know why this was so hard (they did it fine 20 years ago =) and muddled. The explanations I read were presented as more ideological decisions, that they wanted to give Claire and Leon their own unique A scenarios and not make it so redundant, but I don't think that was mutually exclusive with a decent B scenario, particularly the "zapping" sections. How hard is it just make it so you each draw from the same pool of enemies or items (maybe if you kill a Licker as one, in the 2nd they just fight a zombie, or vice veras)? It's such a half measure that Leon's A is basically the B scenario but still shares too much with Claire's A to just play them back to back as such (unless you do the tacked on "2nd run", a half measure to the half measure). It would have probably been better just to go all the way and make their scenarios completely unique; different routes to and through the station from the start, distinctive meetings with Marvin, each is always on the same side of the chain door, etc, and ways to affect the second scenario in the first (basically whatever you do to the environment stays; just leave the doors unlocked, add more monsters, IDK get creative). BYW, they also should have been in contact one more time before the end tokeep that thread alive, ideally when searching for their secondary characters because it would have been a good dramatic moment to share between them and explains why they can't reunite just yet. Anyway, maybe I'll come around to the Bs when I finish them if they closer to what I'm saying than I think and add some cool bosses, etc.

Told you guys, Hardcore is the only way to play. Otherwise what's the point? The entire concept of the game hinges on having to be methodical and careful in how you progress, which is just not compatible with auto saves. (Yeah I know I'm just a grumpy old man :ganishka:).

I'm fucking up pretty bad too! Wasting tons of ammo and health, playing perfect for like an hour and then saving after I mangle some dumb zombie room and saving with less to show for it because I don't want to lose the progress. I might not be saving enough. I'm almost out of the station and have like 6 ribbons but only like two usable healing items (lots of blue and red herbs though =).

Hahaha yeah I actually bought the "deluxe edition" just for that and it's awesome. That OST hasn't aged at all, it's still amazing. I'm also going to play my next run using classic costumes! :guts:

You made me realize I unlocked Claire's costume when I finished Leon, so I'm loading that up when I resume my hardcore retro Claire run.

Poor Claire! Given second billing in a remake of a game where she should by all rights be the main character. All this after getting kicked to the curb in favor of both her co-star and her brother. Hell, even the silly and long-since-rendered-noncanonical novelization written way back when gave her no respect, relegating her to the B scenario...and STILL giving what few Birkin encounters she should have otherwise had to Leon! Wonder if a bitter Elza Walker cursed her for stealing her role? :iva:

Well, if it's any consolation she's A #1 now and even then she was the one that went to the sequel. Also, Leon's the best RE character period, and in 2 he brought a different energy where he was capable and heroic yet appropriately in over his head, whereas Claire was a little more fantastical and irrationally confident for a college student (that super REDFIELD DNA =), so I'm fine with him being the face of RE2 and basically the franchise. :carcus:

Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: February 02, 2019, 08:23:08 AM »
Very interesting, Skeleton, now all that weird mixed-up shit in Leon's game DOES make sense, and I have a lot more to say on the game later that I'll cannibalize from my talks with Aaz, but... I have a question, my original plan was to do Leon A/Claire B on standard and then Claire A/Leon B on hardcore, but I just started Claire's B scenario and really wasn't digging how they're presenting/executing it; so, would I be better off and get more out of it just doing her A scenario next and revisiting the B's (which REALLY seem like a B version now) later if I still care?

If I had known all this going in I also would have done Claire/Leon to start, but if they were going to basically hardwire the A/B scenarios to the characters I think it indeed should have been Leon/Claire because that's how it's emphasized in the original as well as here, (Leon! Leon! Leon!), despite setting the scenarios the opposite way. Maybe I'll feel differently when I see how it all works together in the big picture (like Aaz said, Birkin with Sherry is better, Ada helping Leon makes sense, it just goes against my previous associations where Leon's #1 and Mr. X is almost as tied to Claire's scenario as Irons).

All in all though, knowing this improves my estimation of the game since it explains why Leon's story felt a little lighter and more B influenced than I expected and more of that "A" material is presumably still in there for me to experience as Claire. That makes me happy. Ironically, the thing that made RE2 really unique was this truly interchangeable A/B system (the "ZAPPING" system! ZAP ZAP!), which they never replicated in later games where they'd just dictate the order chronologically, and still didn't even do it for a remake of the game that originally did it... but they pretended to? Weird. Maybe this is why it took so long; I'd like to think they spent years trying to innovate this gimmick and finally just gave up and said, "Fuck it, just do what we always do and then put an optional, truncated 'B' version of the other character's story at the end. Problem solved." RE2 can't be recreated! :guts:

Update: So I was curious if Capcom ever made Claire A/Leon B officially, or even loosely, canon in Code Veronica or something, and it turns out they essentially did in RE6 with a specific plot point branching off from only Claire's A game, so that sort of explains that.

Anyway, after saving a bit into Claire B I backed out and started Claire A Hardcore and am to the point where I can reach the S.T.A.R.S office. Not much of an appreciable difference thus far (was hoping for more streets, and stores =), to start. Hardcore makes it a different game though, Less like RE2: The Arcade Game, and not an unfair one either. Now I'm really on my toes and survival horroring (already learned from some mistakes that cost me some life, a knife and ammo, but no deaths or reloads so far). With a couple tweaks this could and really should have been standard. Maybe just a little more health for you, one more bite's worth, and less for zombies (it sucks shooting a limb half a dozen times or more and it still hangs on =), but then on Standard you take TOO many hits anyway so somewhere in the middle and it would have been perfect and they could have mixed up hardcore a bit more (maybe more and different enemy locations). I imagine it's going to start diverging more from Leon's scenario just before I enter the passage, but we'll see.

OH, another big change, I had a few bucks in my PS Store wallet from that Left Behind return and I sprung for the classic music and sound pack and HOLY SHIT combined with Hardcore and Ink Ribbons  you can dial up the nostalgia to 11! It's implemented very well too, I was half expecting some cheesy footsteps and zombie sounds (ok, hoping =), but they're very judicious with the classic score and sound design as if they meant for it to be that way all along, the quality is excellent and not an anachronistic retro setting by any means. All the right music in all the right rooms makes it a joy to explore and those damn orchestral booms, crashes and random rattling sounds! It's actually probably scarier AND more pleasurable (it's certainly better than the forgettable music in the vanilla game). So, kudos to Capcom on that even though it probably should have just come with the game.

Vagabond / Re: Vagabond Statue
« on: February 02, 2019, 04:09:42 AM »
Not a statue guy but DAAAAAMN! :isidro: :beast:

It's probably as close to a satisfying bookend to Vagabond as we're going to get. Speaking of which, if the next statue they do is also Vagabpond, I suggest a complementary Sasaki Kojiro! Maybe seeing them facing off would inspire Inoue. :carcus:

Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: January 31, 2019, 02:34:44 AM »
When trying to determine the best entry point for The Witcher series I concluded the best course of action was just to not to play any of them. Conundrum solved! :guts:

Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: January 30, 2019, 04:01:41 PM »
God help you when you eventually reach a boss and realize all you got is a half-broken knife and a herb.

We'll see, if I run low I'll do what I gotta do, but more likely I end up with a surplus anyway, so I don't want to let it go to waste in storage. Plus, there's an upgraded Magnum with about 30 rounds, and plenty more yellow powder, waiting for any bosses that try to ruin my day. I took out the last boss only using pistol ammo (there's a trick to the fight), so I have plenty.

I can only play at night after everyone's asleep and I have to be up for work by 5am, so I am literally tired of sneaking around. Thus, until the game makes me pay for it...

Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: January 30, 2019, 03:04:48 PM »
Haha, me neither to be honest and this is another difference with the original games I feel, where the memos really told a part of the story and mattered more.

Yep, exposition, character and story development were way more heavily supported by the found papers in that game; whether it was to fill in the blanks, reinforce characteristics you kind of got by meeting someone or foreshadowing, contrasting, and even revealing the true face of someone like Irons. So far they've been pretty perfunctory, but to be fair the old ones could also be wordy and overlong and keeping them short and to the point fits this style and pace, especially since I pretty much skim or skip through them anyway, clearly.

Anyway, I'm at the labs and I'm OVER it, no more sneaking around conserving resources; anyone that crosses my path is getting dropped, chopped, or burned. :daiba:

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