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Everything posted by strawdonkey

  1. Definitely at the end now.
  2. Man I remember the r/shmups competitions. Learned so much about Judgment Silversword as a result of playing it for one of those. Was still terrible at it though!
  3. Gotta be near the end now. All I have left to figure out is
  4. I've credit fed them both a long time ago, 3rd was great. 2nd took me a little while to get the hang of, I spent a lot of time thinking it was really difficult and I was awful at it and then realised I was routinely making it 80% through the game on one credit. I'm still dying too often to momentary lapses in concentration which result in me thinking I'm the other colour though
  5. One man's clear is another man's u wot m8. As far as putting stuff in the what games you completed thread goes, I usually aim for some kind of 1CC but some games I know I'm not going back to after they've been shamelessly credit-fed, but being done with a game doesn't have to come hand-in-hand with mastering it or even just being able to survive it. I'm currently playing Exceed 2nd at the moment, and I reckon I've got the 1CC in me, but if I stop enjoying it and the best I get is a 2CC, I'd still consider that "finished". I've only got so much life left in me and sometimes it's better spent elsewhere. In short: just have fun with the games yeah
  6. Progress is slowing now, though I've found a couple of huge things tonight that I'm amazed I missed on multiple occasions. Oh and also
  7. 04. Higurashi When They Cry - Ch.2 Watanagashi Man what the fuck. This series took a real turn. So much of this game is just setup, or nonsense. It focuses on a group of teenagers in a remote village, and easily the first half of the game is 95% fluff and 5% Actual Important Stuff. And then it just... changes gears and is constant madness. I'll write some spoilers tomorrow, becuase trying to explain any of this without spoiling it is basically impossible. But I'm absolutely riveted. It's page-turning, thriller horror nonsense and I absolutely love it. Also there's absolutely no game there unless "controlling how fast the text scrolls" counts as a game... Maybe there'll be a decision in a few games time and it will fuck me up entirely. [edit] absolutely packed with spoilers:
  8. 03. Monolith Imagine Enter The Gungeon, only instead of enemies firing a glob of bullets at you, they fire Real Actual Bullet Patterns. Let's compare: Enter the Gungeon: - Everything is guns - Many of the guns are crap - Does not reference the Nimbus Monolith: - Everything is weird and a cat sells you guns - Almost all of the guns are quite good - Defeating a miniboss displays the message "THE NIMBUS HAS BEEN BROKEN" Jokes aside, I played a bunch of Gungeon but there were just so many unsatisfying runs - be it all the guns being shit, not having enough keys for the Mezzanine, etc. Monolith very rarely does this - it's a room-by-room roguelike shooter too but the complex bullet patterns are predictable, and that allows them to stick a bunch more on screen at once. This is especially true for the later bosses, as they'll be putting tons on screen at all times and it's always about finding the appropriate lane to squeeze in to. There's five floors to Monolith, but after your first 5F clear you earn a seal, and have to find the other three to gain access to the sixth floor and the True Last Boss. It got to a point where I was able to reliably get the 5F clear and was getting my teeth kicked in on the sixth floor, but part of this is down to the fact that there's no shop or powerups on the final floor, meaning that you really need to come through the first five relatively unscathed so that you're prepared for the end. Getting access to the other three seals is also really interesting - one of them is just purchsed from the main lobby shopkeeper, but the other two are really interesting one-time fights and a real step up from anything else you've seen at that point. So yeah - if you liked ETG or Nuclear Throne, you'll probably like this too. If you didn't quite get on with those, this might just be the game that you're looking for in the genre, as it's different enough to fix almost all of the problems I had with it. Though it is still really difficult, as the 21+ hours I spent on it would suggest... https://store.steampowered.com/app/603960/Monolith/ Oh yeah and there's DLC, so look forward to that in this thread at a later date!
  9. Monolith update: Fuckin' did it Got a half-decent weapon (laser, homing, triple) and figured out a couple of the bullet patterns on the TLB and was able to get through. 100% the same feeling of 1CCing a real shmup. There's DLC for the game which I'll pick up after a short break to play something else; it apparently rebalances a lot of stuff to potentially make it a mite easier and wanted to get the non-DLC 1CC first because brains are stupid. It's very, very good and was everything I wanted games like Enter the Gungeon and Nuclear Throne to be. Those are both still good but this just felt more right to me. 21+ hours of improvement and learning to get to this point and I should really put this much effort into things that are more important.
  10. Oh shit, that's a great shout. I'd seen the scout flag some as dangerous but it hadn't twigged that some of it might not be. Much appreciated.
  11. Tiny bit stuck, looking for a nudge on one or two of the following. Spoilers within. I've had a couple of runs where I made little to no progress despite doing what I thought was discovering a ton of stuff. The last loop had me Still a bit more exploring to do in a couple of locations which might open more things up, but there's places where I must have missed one important thing becuase I'm sure I've scoured them but the game thinks otherwise. Still having an absolute blast.
  12. I've found it runs OK on the XBox One S, but also my definition of "OK" is finding out that it only chugs sometimes when I'd expected it to be borderline unplayable, so I guess it depends on your tolerance for this stuff. It would definitely be preferable to be locked to 60fps, especially when there's so much more power in a Series X. So I'm about six hours in to this so far and I'm amazed how much I've been through in such a short time. It feels like I've been exploring the system forever and still have a ton to discover. I can only play so much of it in one go though, as discovering new stuff makes my skin crawl and there's only so long I can deal with that sensation before I have to pack it in for a bit! When I'm not playing it I'm mentally unpacking all the stuff that's been discovered and I'm just completely smitten with it. It reminds me of games like Captain Blood, only with 30 years of technology and storytelling in videogames behind it. Oh and I laughed like an idiot when the Autopilot
  13. Still totally smitten with Monolith. It has a last boss (Which I can reach every time and beat about 30% of the time) and a true last boss (which I've yet to beat), but the difficulty is pitched pretty well - if anything the only real issue is that the last boss is such a step up in difficulty from the rest of the game that you can go into it fully-stocked and still only make it out by a thread. The stage before the true last boss is also almost entirely devoid of shops/pickups/etc so if you get through the last boss with so few resources it's a real struggle. But, have been making it to the regular last boss basically 100% of the time so I can almost smell the true clear at this point, just about putting it all together (which I think I've said about basically every Shmup in the last six months and am in danger of becoming mistaken for a meme at this point ) [edit] Aaaaarrgghh just died with the true last boss having one hit worth of health left
  14. 01. The Artful Escape 02. Rhythm Doctor From what I've read of it, The Artful Escape seems to have been a bit polarising. I've heard a few people suggesting it's toilet and others having a great time with it. And the setting, the premise, is great - a story about the nephew of an extremely famous folk singer, who carries the weight of their accomplishments on his back. You go through his journey as he struggles with the clash of his artistic vision against the history and expectation of his home and his family. And then you run through these gorgeous vistas but you have to listen to the main character formlessly wailing away on a guitar for the whole thing, else you don't get to see the nice stuff. In 2003 The Mars Volta released De-Loused in the Comatorium. It's an incredible prog/punk album, the tracks are snappy and dense and complex and it's a rollercoaster all the way through. In 2004 I went to see them live and halfway through their set there was a 10-minute prog jazz bongos improv section. It was (to me) completely unenjoyable. Playing The Artful Escape, for me, was like this experience only without the promise of getting to hear anything good at the end of it. But at least there's a rhythm game in he- no wait it's just holding X and occasionally you play no-stakes Simon Says where every performance ends with the same three chords. The main character's dialogue is awful too, though I feel like it's a deliberate disappearance up their own arse, as much of the supporting cast are entertaining and well-written. I must be missing something, or maybe it's that I took a dim view of the Most Famous Person In The Universe being someone who I personally wanted to just _stop_ for a minute. -- Rhythm Doctor, on the other hand, is a ryhthm game through and through. I won't spoil it beyond the base premise - you are operating a remote defibrilator and you have to activate it by hitting the Space Bar on the 7th beat - but the game is absolutely stacked with ideas and variations that keep things fresh and interesting and tricky. You're treating one patient? How about hot-swapping to another and having to adjust to their rhythm on the fly. How about treating two patients at once? Four? What if they are a cockatiel It's testament to the design of the game that once you have learned the patterns you can quite feasibly play the game with your eyes closed, and for the trickiest bit of the (current) last boss fight, I did exactly that; it was helpful to avoid some of the visual distractions that the game throws at you. In addition this game has also given me one of the memorable videogame moments of all time. It's so inventive, the characters are (mostly) extremely likeable and it's just constantly doing new and fun things. Only in Early Access at the moment but worth every penny (I got it as a gift but pretty confident in that proclamation) and hopefully new stuff will be coming soon-ish. https://store.steampowered.com/app/774181/Rhythm_Doctor/ Now to go back and do all the bonus stuff
  15. Has this been crashing a lot for anyone recently? I've not played for a while, and loaded it up today; first load, it wouldn't recognise controller input (after pressing A to load the game) and the second load, the game kept freezing, music stuttering, etc. Been playing other stuff ok so I'm not sure it's the machine explicitly at fault and it recently had a full shutdown. Disappointing to waste about 10-15 minutes on loading times to it today. (XBox One, forgot to mention!)
  16. Oh hey it's this again 2021/65a. Star Hunter DX (Space Cadet, 1CC, 19.3mil) I first wrote about this when I shamelessly credit-fed it here; since then I've gone back for a few more goes and have been really struggling to chain a good run together. It turns out the reason for this is that I am a big idiot as I had completely forgotten about a really crucial mechanic in the game. In short: your bombs delete bullets and refill your bullet time gauge. If you graze bullets (fly close to them without dying to them), it fills a gauge that replaces your bombs. Suddenly I'd gone from bombing occasionally and conserving them as you only get three per life, to bombing the shit out of everything and being able to play the game in almost permanent bullet time. Literally realised this half-way through the successful run and terrorised my way through the rest of the game. The thing is, if you want to score big, you can't abuse bullet time like this too much as you need a bit of time between activations to build your multiplier back up. It's brilliant - an excellent risk/reward mechanic mixed in with a way to make the game survivable. I've gone from being pretty positive on this to absolutely gushing now, the mechanical design is excellent and despite the fact I've just finished it I'm going back in for another go right away.
  17. I think there's absolutely no chance of me coming close to last year's total (~67) in 2022, pandemic easing or not. But, keeping the list has proven to be really theraputic and interesting so will totaly be keeping up to date on it again regardless.
  18. 66. Pokemon Sword (400/400 Galarian Pokedex) In before the lock! Bought Pokemon back in 2019 as I half-wanted to play it, and thought the kids might be interested. They bounced off it pretty hard, but a couple of years later have fallen completely in love with it and are having a whale of a time, to the extent that when they've finished playing Pokemon, they want me to play Pokemon afterwards. I'd always intended to complete the Pokedex as I've never done one before, but as with most things in life, got distracted by something shiny and it never got done. So it's been amazing fun just dossing around in various different areas hoovering up everything that needed catching, and seeing them get all excited when we stumble across something that hasn't been caught yet, and planning out where our gaps are, what needs levelling, and so on. I think (hope!) that it's helped them enjoy the game more too. They've been helping me with the trade-locked evolutions, and it blew my youngest's mind when we traded Karrablast and Shelmet, and the Karrablast pinches the Shelmet's shell during the trade to become a dual-wielding lance knight thing, and the Shelmet emerges as a sort of Ninja Slug at the other end of it. I've also been using Pokemon Home for trading for some of the Shield exclusives, and that's worked seamlessly - just put something up for trade, let people know what you want for it, and go and do something else for a bit. I've dispatched countless Swirlixes and Scraggys into the void and have been able to get hold of all the Shield Exclusives pretty easily without having to badger friends to spend an hour trading stuff back and forth for me. I get that some die-hard Pokemon fans have been disapponted with this game, but for me it's been an absolute blast in two separate chunks of time, and I suspect I'm going to have to spend the next several weeks breeding Littens and Pupplios and dealing with the question "What's your favourite Pokemon". As it happens, it's Gardevoir, but even then I was a little creeped out when one day I set up camp and this happened: Also
  19. Couple of random thoughts: Star Hunter DX is definitely really good! I was a bit put off by the sheer amount of bullets on screen even on the easiest mode, and then learned how well all the mechanics meshed and now I'm really enjoying it. Monolith is technically not a shmup but has a lot of shmup in its DNA - think Enter The Gungeon only the bullet patterns were designed rather than just sort of hand movements. It also lacks the frustrating bit of Gungeon where you play eight runs in a row and every weapon you find is awful. But mainly it's the bullet patterns that make it - there's way more bullets on screen but it just feels like you are always responsible for the mistakes rather than unfortuante clumping. There's always a lane, you just have to find it. Can't wait to watch that DDP score attack, I've loved seeing things like this become speedrun- and FGC-adjacent and hope to see more of it in the future.
  20. That's probably the last one from me this year, unless I get a few hours to finish The Artful Escape tomorrow (which is probably unlikely). I'd lined up Disco Elysium to play over Christmas and have instead been knee-deep in stuff I got in the Secret Santa, and also trying to complete the Pokemon Sword and Shield Pokedex, which typically also won't quite be done for tomorrow either, but 65+ games is still a lot and it's been really interesting having a debrief after finishing something, as well as seeing thoughts from others on things I'd been considering picking up/have already played/etc. Quick shout out to the top 5 I've played this year in no particular order: Touhou: Luna Nights Crimzon Clover: World Ignition Deltarune Chapter 2 Inscryption The Hello, Charlotte games Probably see you next year! The way things are going with the pandemic I expect to have a few more nights at home on the sofa yet.
  21. 65. Star Hunter DX (Space Cadet, totally used the limited coninues available) Received this in this year's Steam Secret Santa. Found out about it via reading ImmaculateClump raving about it in the Shmups thread, it's by a small studio called 1CC games; a horizontal shmup which is dripping with 80s western sci-fi nonsense. Nobody cares about the story, you play as a tiny ship with big guns and destroy everything and it's really good. Space Cadet is the easiest mode, and for about the first half of the first stage you mow everything down and life's good, and then the bullets start coming and it's easy to think you've selected the wrong difficulty because there are tons of them. Generally they move slowly so you have plenty of time to avoid what's on screen but it gets hectic extremely quickly, and initially it feels like it's way too difficult to be enjoyable. The thing is, there's a small learning curve to the mechanics which isn't immediately obvious. You can enter bullet time, which is available after you kill enough stuff. When in bullet time, you are more powerful, enemies move slower, and when killing an enemy all the bullets it had fired turn into giant gold points cubes. Your multiplier (which you build up quickly by shooting things with your weaker weapon, and slowly by shooting things with your more powerful weapon) plays a part in this too, so there's a great risk/reward feel of whether to save your bullet time for a scoring opportunity, or whether to just go "nope this is too many bullets" and use it to help navigate/wipe a bunch off the screen. The other thing that's been a big level-up moment has been bomb usage. Bombs are traditionally an "oh fuck" button but here they double up as a proactive tool - they can be used to damage nearby enemies, they delete bullets in the blast radius, but also any stuff you impact with the bomb also recharges your bullet time. As a result it gives you more opportunities to nope out of a pattern you might not make it through, but also it lets you prepare for the next wave of nonsense that's coming with a full charge of bullet time. In a couple of days I've gone from being utterly hapless and barely getting past the second level, to being able to no-hit the first four stages before getting utterly tanked on the fifth. I think the 1CC is coming, but I need to spend a bit of time practicing that fifth stage first because it's a real step up in complexity.
  22. So I am about 7 hours into Monolith now and am still very much at the stage where I don't want to play any other games ever. Basically, Monolith is reminiscent of Enter the Gungeon, only everything is really low-res, and there is a significant amount of Real Shmups in this game's blood. I played a bunch of Gungeon and ultimately fell out with it due to one too many things that I found Really Annoying - so many of the guns were terrible, you were very unlikely to get anything particualrly powerful and it felt like the enemies often just fired a clump of random shit at you and sometimes you just couldn't avoid it. The plus sides were that there is an absolute ton of variety and crazy stuff in the game but I felt like I saw it so often that the grind through infinite crap weapons really wasn't worth it. Monolith is a bit more straightforward - you navigate a sequence of single-screen rooms, there are five floors and you usually get one shop, one weapon upgrade and one ship upgrade per floor. There's some events that are less frequent (I had one that gave me 400% ammo for my current weapon but cut the ammo capacity of all future weapons in half, for instance) but you can always count on that stuff as a bare minimum. The weapon upgrades are all powerful, though some of them are definitely situational - even so it's extremely rare that you are left out in the cold due to poor weapon choice, they start off pretty good and it just goes up from there. But, the biggest change for me is the bullet patterns. The regular enemies often fire directly at you, but the larger enemies, minibosses and bosses have Actual Bullet Patterns which you can learn and navigate with a little practice. Even the patterns of the final boss have lanes and areas that you should be aiming for, and if you don't get in to them it's becuase you've not recognised what to do quickly enough, rather than you getting caught out by an unfortunate bullet clump. I've managed a basic clear of the first five floors, but so still a little more work to do yet. Thanks Santa! You smashed it with this one.
  23. Game of the Year A1. Deltarune Chapter 2 A2. Inscryption A3. Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth A4. Rhythm Doctor A5. Star Hunter DX Biggest Disappointment of the Year Z1. Videogame industry humans Z2. Nintendo Switch first-party drought Z3. Sound Design of the Year S1. Rhythm Doctor S2. Get in the car, loser! S3. Deltarune Chapter 2 Visual Design of the Year V1. Inscryption V2. Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth V3. Writing of the Year W1. Deltarune Volume 2 W2. Get in the car, loser! W3. Inscryption Format of the Year F1. PC Publisher or Developer of the Year P1. Team Ladybug
  24. Current status: I am struggling to do anything other than play Monolith. Send help
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