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BabelRich

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  1. BabelRich

    NFL 2021!

    Looks like it could be a long day for Philly.
  2. 11/01 - Rise of the Tomb Raider Thank you Epic. Missed this originally and been waiting for it to maybe come back on to one of the subscription services but thanks to my brand new middling PC and Epic's bottomless pockets I was finally able to chalk it off. Gameplay is very much a continuation from the reboot i.e. Uncharted with a British accent. It's fine; melee combat feels very mushy and unfocused but gunplay is tidy enough if a bit too frequent. I remember Jeff Goldblum asking about the reboot if they thought their Tomb Raider game might actually contain, y'know' some tombs to raid; well thankfully Jeff a welcome addition to Rise is bigger more puzzley tombs. There are only 9 but they are a highlight of the game for me. Another nice addition (subtraction?) is the reduction in torture porn. Gone are most of Lara's grizzly death cut-scenes, replaced with bog standard death animations. They still put the poor girl through some shit but it's mostly just everything she touches collapsing. The acting is good but the story is pretty pants. Lara wants to proved MacGuffin exists to absolve her father. Twist you see coming a mile off. Team up with people who know you're after MacGuffin they protect because you're not quite as bad as the other guys who are after it. Another twist so telegraphed it arrived on 1880's note paper just after the Delorean was hit by lightning. Unsatisfying end. Glad I played it, but liked the first one better 7/10.
  3. 07/01 - Sam and Max - Beyond Time and Space Remaster The second of SkunkApe's remasters and my personal favourite Telltale series. Plays exactly like the first remaster which worked perfectly on Switch with the extra lighting and graphical enhancements. This one is all about the awesome script and environments though; including Santa's workshop, A Bavarian Castle disco, a time-travelling elevator and the own personal Hell's of characters from the game. Now to wait for The Devil's Playhouse to complete the trilogy and, dare I hope..., an original game/series. 9/10 (Yes, I'm doing meaningless ratings this year)
  4. BabelRich

    NFL 2021!

    Also, just to add a bit of flavour, two years ago my wife bought me a Redskins hoody for Christmas and a few months later they changed the name. Thus year she bought me a WFT hat and here we are again.
  5. BabelRich

    NFL 2021!

    For those that care (so probably only me) Washington have announced an announcement. The new team name and logo will be unveiled on the second of February. In typical WFT style they have already said it won’t be fan-(and my personal)favourite ‘Redwolves’ so that’s shit already. Rumours pointing towards something militaristic with Commanders or Admirals being favourites. Sigh, we really do have hands-down the worst owner in sports.
  6. In putting this list together, I realised I haven’t actually played too many 2021 games this year. Probably as I spent most of the year playing through FF14 in its entirety. So here goes based on what I have played. Game of the Year 2021 A1. Guardians of the Galaxy Was a tough call between this and Psychonauts for me; I gave it to GOTG just based on the huge surprise it was. Going from 0 to GOTY on my interest meter thanks to this lovely forum. Weirdly the minute-to-minute gameplay is fun but not mind-blowing; it’s the package as a whole (see later entries) that has GOTG sitting atop my list gleaming like the main antagonist of the game. A2. Psychonauts 2 A game I’ve been waiting 16 years for, and the only disappointment was it wasn’t longer. Endlessly inventive, funny, touching and beautiful. I can see why folks were pushed away by the old school mechanics or story interruptions but for me it was nigh-on perfect. A3. Kena – Bridge of Spirits Another nice surprise and another quite old school experience wrapped in a gorgeous shell. The devs are animators by trade and boy does it show. A wonderfully atmospheric ride that only really suffers from a lack of diversity in its environments. And a massive shout out to possibly the best non-gyro aiming system I’ve ever encountered. A4. Unpacking What a lovely few hours this was, relaxing and engaging. Figuring out what the game and DVDs boxes were was a highlight; Sticking spoons in the kitchen draw less so. But a lovely story told in a different and interesting way was enough to see it place 4th for me. A5. Bowser’s Fury A brilliant reinvention of the Mario formula, only really drops places due to being an obvious proof of concept. Game of the Year (premiered anywhere pre-2021) B1. Final Fantasy 14 Endwalker More of the same game with a hugely bonkers story. B2. Sam and Max – Beyond Time and Space Wonderful remaster of, IMO, the best season of any traditional Telltale game. B3. Dicey Dungeons Great twist on the roguelite formula. Biggest Disappointment of the Year Z1. Cunts in the industry again, as it will be every year until they’re gone. Don’t really need to add anything here. Z2. Mario Golf Career Mode Another underbaked career mode from Camelot. Not as bad as Mario Tennis but neither is invasive dentistry and I don’t fancy going through that again either. Z3. The GTA remasters Enjoyed my re-playthrough of San Andreas but come on Rockstar, this was a massively poor effort for games that deserve better. Sound Design of the Year S1. Guardians of the Galaxy Wonderful soundtrack mixed perfectly with set pieces. The best acting since Witcher 3. Some wonderful atmospherics. S2. Psychonauts 2 Great acting along with a sweet faux-60s spy soundtrack, what’s not to like. S3. Artful Escape Space Opera! Visual Design of the Year V1. Psychonauts 2 So much imagination on display in this game. V2. Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart Getting closer to a playable Pixar film all the time. V3. Artful Escape Eye-searing visuals. So very close to garish it could have gone massively wrong, but they walked the line perfectly. Writing of the Year W1. Guardians of the Galaxy The script to this game really is next level, and it’s brought to life by some of the best performances I’ve ever seen in a game. The characters are perfect, the emotional moments are perfect, the comedy is perfect. Again, it could have gone horribly awry but somehow it manages to hot every beat it goes for. W2. Psychonauts 2 I could write exactly the same paragraph as above for this game too. W3. Unpacking Is there even any writing here? Not in the traditional sense but the way the story is told has to be recognised. Format of the Year F1. Xbox Gamepass continues to be worth more than its weight in gold. Publisher or Developer of the Year P1. Microsoft/Xbox Games Studios Psychonauts, MSFS, Forza, Halo. Not all perfect but no other publisher has given us this much goodness this year.
  7. Ah he was the best. Was gutted when he retired as colo(u)r comms was never the same. Already seeing some of his bonkers stuff being posted on Twitter, analysis of Gatorade buckets and pigeons etc.
  8. Be the latest Sam and Max remaster on the Switch to avoid talking to my in-laws, then Paw Patrol and Costume Quest with the nipper for me.
  9. A few quick hitters to tidy up before the end of year GTA San Andreas I wasn't going to let online ridicule and a laundry list of bugs stop me from hitting this up as it was on GP. Its a tough play these days, especially the gunplay even with the modernisations, but it's still 100% my favourite GTA map and storyline. The addition of restarts and checkpoints a Godsend in this age of little free time. Mario Golf - Career Mode Any good? short answer 'Meh'; long answer 'Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeh!' Nowhere near as bad as the debacle that was the Mario Tennis career mode but it lures you in to thinking it's going to be akin to the Gameboy game early before screaming off in to a realm of Speed golf (shit and pointless) and Cross Country golf (an abomination of a mode). Dicey Dungeons Now this was lovely, started off really strong before becoming a bit too sloggy toward the end. Was really good fun while it lasted though and each character playing so wildly different really helped keep my interest up. Picross S 6 More Picross. There's always more Picross. Final Fantasy 14 - Endwalker Cards on the table I haven't truly finished this yet, I still have the last dungeon to do but I'm throwing it in now so I don't miss recording it over the break. I saw a Tweet that said 'You can't spoil the story of Endwalker as noone would believe what you told them.' and that is absolutely spot on. After starting out in very familiar territory it suddenly ups the 'mental' stakes time and time again until you're nodding sagely along with the 'box of frogs' plan to save the world going 'Yeah, makes sense.' Anyway, it's been a great wrapping up of the 8(?) year long story I have experienced all of this year and, unless the ending it monumentally shit, it's been the best FF story I've experienced since IX. Final Tally
  10. Ta for that but I think I’ve done everything in my duty finder I was thinking more things I may have missed. For instance I know I’ve missed the Bahamut raids back after ARR.
  11. I’m pretty sure the answer is no, but is there a definitive way of telling what dungeons/trials etc I have and haven’t competed?
  12. Agreed, I know it's early but I honestly don't think we're in danger of going down anymore so we definitely shouldn't be panic buying.
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