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  1. I loved it, too. I’ve kind of been letting my thoughts marinade for a while since finishing off the last of the post-game content last weekend and while it’s not without its niggles, I really enjoyed my time with the game. Putting on my Tim Rogers hat, it’s definitely a game that you can chill with, and boy did I chill the heck out with this game. I found immense pleasure in dividing my time between leisurely soaking up the gorgeously rendered environments and stomping around like a casual parry god in each combat encounter.
  2. I can definitely recall a couple of hard cuts in this, but they stick to it for the most part. Honestly, I'm not really sure what it adds to the experience; the illusion is forgotten whenever you open the menu anyway!
  3. They've basically taken the enchantment slots for armour in the previous game and separated it out into the amulet. Much nicer, IMO, as it's less fiddly than swapping your gems out whenever you switch gear.
  4. Ahh, funny, I still struggle with 632146 motions like Nago's super (but this is probably because Testament doesn't have one so it doesn't get practised much). I find the 4 in the motion often doesn't register as I don't leave enough time between letting go of down with my middle finger and pressing right with my index, so the move gets read by the game as 64216. I'm more consistent with this on 2P side though, for whatever reason!
  5. I'm having a great time playing this. I'm still not 100% sold on the combat, but it's a pleasure just to look at, the story and characters are fantastic, and the pacing between mainline story sections and faff to be done at your leisure is fantastic. It just feels so generous, from the little quips between characters as they comment on your actions to the sheer amount of stuff to do everywhere, it's a real banquet of a game. I've upgraded the axe and the blades to level 4. Spoilers for plot events up to that point. I have the feeling I'm almost there with the combat, but whenever I seem to get on a roll, there'll be another fight where I get two or three-shot by chained enemy attacks (the amount of invincibility you get on hit feels low) and feel like maybe I still have no idea how to actually play effectively. I think in general I would prefer if you could interrupt enemy attacks with your basic combo a bit more often, I feel like I'm forced to play very defensively and reactively in almost every fight, whereas I'd like a few more where I could just go a bit ham. I think part of my problem is that I've charged into a couple of optional bits under-levelled as I've been a bit stingy with my upgrades till now. I'm playing on hard and despite some dabbling with other options find myself stuck on the dauntless shield for better or worse. I just found a mod for it that bumps up the parry window though, and am feeling much more comfortable with the blades of chaos, so maybe it'll all click soon. I've also decided to just max the gauntlet/loin set that gives you the Bayonetta time-slow for a last minute dodge, which is great fun. So far my only other real complaints are that structurally it's not nearly as impressive as the first game, where the changing water level in the Lake of the Nine gave rise to further wonders after each major plot beat. I know it would've felt a bit lame if they tried to do the same thing twice, and I'm sure there's more stuff to see and do overall, but it doesn't have the same satisfying simplicity as the first game. Also, characters are all a bit too keen to say the right thing to each other in moments of quiet, which feels a bit too on board with the gen z media trend of disliking tension between characters you see in a lot of shows these days. This is possibly the smallest quibble anyone's ever had with anything though.
  6. Nice! I made the switch to leverless a few months ago and I absolutely love the feel now I'm used to it. There are definitely a few types of motion people say are unintuitive as you can't visualise them in the same way as a stick. The first that springs to mind is the DP motion, made especially awkward on 2P side for a lot of people as the weakness of your ring finger will be very apparent at first. It'll take some time, but you can definitely get it down if you persevere. The other common one is half circles. Although it's a simple roll from one direction to another, doing this too quickly will often result in missing the down input, and depending on the input strictness of the game, can mean the move doesn't register. Just something to remember if you're struggling with these! Also, do experiment with using your right thumb instead of your left for the up button. Thinking of it as a 'jump' button was absolutely crucial to me in being able to adapt to this style of controller, and helped me get used to movement in general. If you're a glutton for punishment and playing KoF you'd do well to look up some shortcuts for the control style, as trying most of KoF's weird nonsense 'honestly' is not a great idea!
  7. That’s scripted. I found hard mode to be pretty unchallenging during the opening section of the game, not dying once, but in the first area I’ve travelled to it's definitely become much tougher. Lots of enemies attacking from all angles, with attacks far tougher to parry, and Kratos takes silly damage to boot. I think I’m settling into the rhythm of it now, but conversely I think combat feels slightly woolier than the first game, mainly down to the dodging not feeling as strong for getting you out of danger. I do like a lot of the new moves Kratos has though, particularly the charged R1 axe throw!
  8. The seamless element of 2v2 and 3v3 sounds cool, is the winning character able to walk around and set up nonsense like in Marvel or is it more like a quick reset to round start?
  9. Are you talking about drive impact? You can beat it by either throwing, doing a super, or somehow landing 3 hits before the animation finishes (or is it 4, it has a finite amount of armour regardless). You can also neutral jump it and punish from behind. I'm quite curious how prominent it'll end up being once the game is figured out a bit because it does seem ludicrously strong day one if you mash it during an opponent's blockstring. I'm probably on the other side of the fence from you on expanded character movesets, I think it's one of the things that's stopped me ever really gelling with 3D fighters (though I won't let that stop me trying out Tekken 8 I reckon), but to give an example I was already falling off SFV a when they introduced V-Trigger and V-Skill 2s to the game and that was basically the nail in the coffin for me because I couldn't be bothered to learn all the variance these news moves would add for a cast of 25+ characters! Also, I think I have to count myself among the truly excited for this game now, I cannot wait to get stuck in!
  10. Holy heck, I think I found my main chicken. Kimberly is ridiculous fun!
  11. Been playing a good chunk of Kimberly this afternoon. I think she might be the kind of cheap I need to win at this game! Plus having no DP motions is excellent for my leverless lifestyle right now.
  12. Oh, and the Critical Art animations are way, way too long. I’m sick of all of ‘em already!
  13. Didn’t manage to play till quite late friday but I was on and off it most of Saturday. Jesus I’m awful at Street Fighter these days! I’m enjoying it, but do have some niggles. Firstly, the netcode seems great. The only rollbacks I’ve had were with a player in the US and even at over 150 ping it was surprisingly playable! The drive system seems very cool. It’s big and loud and fun to use and I really like how many mechanics are tied to it. In particular I love how drive rush changes the properties of an attack - with Juri you can drive rush into her f.MK overhead and link off it with cr.MP, which is as delicious as you imagine considering you can also go low with cr.MK off the drive rush as well. The tug of war RPS with the very focus-attack like drive impact is also great fun, especially when the corner is involved as if you hit the cornered player you either get a fully stun or a guaranteed combo if they get knocked into the wall. This one I’m not so sure about in the long run but it’s great fun right now. Fighting feels fairly solid, but IDK, I think the mocap animation makes it feel a teensy bit less solid that SFIV when attacks connect. There’s tonnes of screen shake to sell the impact of a hit, but somehow it’s not quite fully doing it for me. The animation is nice for the most part and combos feel pretty good to land, but I think the newer characters are a bit rum because of the animation. Jamie and Luke in particular have pretty ambiguous animations which makes it unintuitive when they’re punishable on block. I suppose this is the case with most fighting games these days though, so it’s probably more an issue of experience. I’ve mostly been playing Juri, and she’s tonnes of fun. Ryu seems very strong, as he always does before the first balance patch. His crouching medium kick is insane at the moment! I really hate his game win animation though, where he does a sort of angry flex. Feels a bit off for the character if you ask me. TBH, all the characters come off a big smug and annoying in their win animations. Well, with the possible exception of Chun, I’ve never seen her win screen. Throw ranges seem downright ridiculous by the way. Hope they’re toned down a wee bit before the final game, I’m already sick of jump in button, throw upon landing! Chalk me up as another one not in love with the battle hub. I love the jazz, but hate the clean space station aesthetic. Why does it look like this when everything else is so hip-hop inflected? Feels totally weird to me. I didn’t bother with the character creator as I was desperate to just get into some fights when I finally got my chance to play on Friday, but it looks pretty robust huh! All in all I’m very excited for the final game. I fear I’ve rotted my SF brain away with Guilty Gear so it’s going to be a steep climb back, but I’m very much looking forward to playing y’all like times of old.
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