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What games did you complete? 2020 Edition

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Why? Because it's already 2020 here! And I have nothing better to do!

 

Some very basic ground rules, when posting about a completion, if people could list their previously completed titles in a spoiler that'd help keep the thread from just turning into a series of ever-increasing lists to scroll through, think of the poor mobile users. Also, it'd be nice if people wrote something about what they've played as it's always good to hear opinions (especially for games that don't have their own threads). Obviously how much you write is up to you, but if it generates some discussion, even better!

 

An additional note, this thread isn't here to suck away any interesting discussion away from dedicated game topics. If while writing up a pocket review or summary here you come up with some interesting discussion consider copying (or expanding) on those points in the dedicated topic.

 

Completed doesn't have to mean 100% completion, that would be madness. Don't get too obsessed. If you are playing a game that you find you are hating....just add it to your abandoned pile. (I'll add a link here once someone starts up an abandoned games thread for 2020.) Don't waste your time on something you no longer enjoy.

 

Postmortems on  last years gaming to be kept at the end of the 2019 thread if possible so as not to split the discussion. https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/308681-what-games-did-you-complete-2019-edition/

 

Oh, and Happy New Year,

 

Here are previous years you might want to look at for nostalgia or to help with your nominations for game of the decade.

2019 https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/308681-what-games-did-you-complete-2019-edition/

2018 https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/303667-what-games-did-you-complete-2018-edition/&

2017 https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/296730-what-games-did-you-complete-2017-edition/&

2016 http://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/290301-what-games-did-you-complete-2016-edition/

2015 https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/282982-what-games-did-you-complete-in-2015/

2014 http://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/276281-what-games-did-you-finish-in-2014/

2013 https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/267607-what-games-did-you-finish-in-2013/

2012 https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/256988-what-games-did-you-finish-in-2012/

2011 https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/237405-what-games-did-you-finish-in-2011/

2010 http://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/236931-what-games-did-you-finish-in-2010/

2009 http://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/219264-what-games-did-you-finish-in-2009/

2008 https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/199358-games-youve-completed-this-year-2008/

 

 

 

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Jan

 

09/01 The Cat and the Coup (PC) It's short. (15 minutes long) It's free.It's an artistic representation the life of Prime Minister of Iran, Mohammed Mossadegh, and his subsequent downfall through a CIA- and MI6-engineered coup during the 1950s. It was re-mastered to work on new systems this year, again along with Black Friday it's worth playing given what's happening right now. edit: Playing it again it felt a little different and by reading the notes I've read the developer has upgraded the visuals to 4K and there's more art now (each puzzle room transition was previously black whereas now it's a huge mural.) Worth replaying if you played the original back in 2011.

 

09/01 1979 Revolution:Black Friday (PC) Ultra short Telltale game that veers from frustrating to eye opening. Having you as the role of an aspiring photo journalist in the chaos of the revolution in Iran in the late 70's is inspired, allowing you to try and make sense of the chaos. And this is what this game is really good at, humanising the people who had to navigate this period along with the messiness of politics, friendships, class, religion and family. I was impressed with the photo taking which would then

 

put a real life photo taken from the same angle alongside it.

If it's in your library now is a great time to play this (and The Cat and the Coup, also available on Steam.)

 

08/01 Wolfenstein:the Old Blood (PC) So reading some of the reactions back in the day some Wokfenstein fans didn't like the New Blood. "Why is this set in the 60's and not the 40's? Why isn't this set in castles and sewers and other grey places? What's all this plot stuff? And why is BJ a soldier? He's OSA you casuals!" The Old Blood feels like Machine Games reply, "All right you big babies. Here's what you want. Hope you're good enough!" A prequel to the New Blood it's all killer no filler. It has some early sections that are too reliant on stealth until you work out a couple of tricks but then it's a roller coaster ride from beginning to end.Great for fans of the New Blood and for those disappointed in the New Blood. This is what you want.

 

03/01 Wolfenstein:the New Order (PC) Bought this on a whim ages ago on a sale and then ignored it because I was bored of grey and brown FPS games. Played maybe 20 minutes of the first level last year and then abandoned it. Had another crack at it this year purely because you can sort your Steam games by space taken and expected to either trudge through out of duty or leave it aside given that the first 20 minutes felt like a guided corridor shooter. Blimey, this game is a bit special isn't it. I loved it. I was going to wisecrack how it was like Gone Home, but with guns but the alternate levels between action and exploration really give you time to breathe in the setting. I'd avoided all spoilers so I was under the impression that this was going to be all castles and sewers. Had no idea it was going to feel like The Great Escape crossed with The Italian Job. I had no idea that I'd end up

 

on the fucking moon!

Seriously if it's in your backlog don't continue making the same mistake I did. It's now firmly one of my favourite FPS games of all time.

 

01/01 Detroit:Become Human (PS4) I enjoyed Beyond Two Souls most apart from a couple of problematic chapters. But the combination of receiving this for "free" via PSPlus and recommendations from friends I decided to run though it over the Christmas break. I do enjoy these sorts of games and was impressed by the branching narrative which appears to have real choices that lock you off from other paths. It's heavy handed in places but I'd recommend it to fans of Telltale and Dontnod games. Next to Death Stranding it's probably one of the most stunning games on PS4 and it's weak parts are saved by some great acting from the charismatic leads. More complicated than Telltale's output but less so than Bandersnatch. Recommended if you got it on PS-Plus. Edit: Something I almost missed here in summing up, there really needs to be a strong content for this game for the early scenes of domestic violence which might cause some distress.

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I missed out on this thread last year but found the 2018 edition a great reference for my year in gaming so definitely in for 20.

Indeed I just clocked one I’ve been working on for a while now so without further ado;

 

Spoiler

01/01 One Piece World Seeker (Xbone X) - an open world action / RPG lite in the mould of later AssCreed games. Middle of the road gameplay, repetitive fetch quests but sky high production values with nice HDR implementation. The story is written by Oda so fits well, this could easily be an arc in the anime. For fans of the show I would say a solid 8/10, for every body else,  WTF is this weaboo shite / 10.

 

13/01 Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order (Xbone X)

This has been done to death in terms of explaing the game so I won't waste time. Suffice to say it was a nice breezy diversion and a hell of a lot more fun than the last movie (not hard TBH)

Overall 7/10 - a bit derivative, and didn't do anything particualrly well enough to warrant some of the more sensationalist hyperbole out there about the game.

 

19/01 Shenmue 3 (PS4 Pro)

I really wanted to love this, really. Unfortunatley the Edge review was about right, nice for sentimental reasons and great to see the story continue but it's painfully outdated in terms of mechanics and gameplay. Some very tedious "I need to scrape together a load of cash for macguffin x" sections which tested my patience to the extent I'm not sure if I even really enjoyed the last third or so.

I'm not going for a score here as objectively it's a hard 5/10, with the rose tinted glasses on perhaps a 7.

 

02/02 Atelier Ryza: Ever Darkness & the Secret Hideout (PS4 Pro)

My first atelier game in quite a few years. There’s a lot to like in here for JRPG fans, lovely presentation, really good soundtrack and solid game mechanics.

Unlike previous games there is no time limit on completion so you have as much time as you may want to grind up alchemy skill, farm ingredients and generally noodle about.

Give it a go while waiting for FFVII Remake!

 

09/03 Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel (PS4 Pro)

Wow, a belter of a JRPG. Kind of Persona meets plot heavy military type thing. Great battle system, good characters and a genuinely interesting story.

A hell of a cliffhanger ending so part 2 is probably next on my playlist. 
Look past the basic ass graphics (it’s essentially an upscaled Vita game) and there’s a lot to love here.

Solid 9/10 recommendation from me


11/03 Call of Duty:WW2 (Xbonex) campaign done, hate multiplayer 

I fancied a “dumb” game after a couple of heavy RPG’s and that’s exactly what I got.

Hateful American bro-shit story, dodgy ending section which did not sit well at all and landed very badly.

Of course top drawer production and some great spectacle but it’s ultimately fucking trash.

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01/01 - Persona 4: Dancing All Night (PS4) - I spent all of yesterday playing this, and ended up completing the story mode and unlocking all the extra characters; songs and modifiers. It's an excellent rhythm action game with a lot of Persona fan service. This has a proper story mode, which plays like a visual novel interspersed with the odd dance. Needless to say there's a ridiculous amount of text, which thankfully you can skip. It's a straight port of the Vita version, with no new additions and graphically it's definitely not as good as Persona dancing 3 and 5. Again, I'd argue it's lacking in songs, although additional songs can be bought fairly cheaply as DLC. Now to grind points to try and get the Platinum.

 

Edit: I got the Platinum :)

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Resident Evil 2 Remake (Leon and Claire 2nd) - Never played the original. Initially I was a bit down on this, that the zombies couldn't hurt you at all outside of a QTE where you're invulnerable if you have an item took a lot of tension out of the combat, and while the series had gotten very good at balancing exploration, backtracking and progression, going back to a million keys and locks felt very retrograde. That said, it picks up later when more threatening enemies are introduced and I particularly liked the 2nd run, with its fewer safe rooms and earlier enemies, it actually gave me the "gloves off" experience I was looking for, and the different content is a great way to handle a second playthrough.

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Yeah, the 2019 thread really helped me focus on finishing rather than buying. Started 2020 off positively, finishing one that I’d been playing a while. 
 

1. Luigi’s Mansion 3 (02/01)

 

Very very good. Beautiful to look at and some exquisite level design mainly made up for the slightly clunky controls and padding. It’s so well put together and imaginative and *funny*. Solid 8/10 and in my top five for last year. 

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02/01/2020 - Remember Me (PC)

 

Nice to be able to join this thread party and, actually with a game I enjoyed!

 

My little romp through Neu Paris was as an 'Errorist', looking to take down the system and restore everyone's memories. Or something. It's full of macguffins and deus ex machina abilities but at it's core it's a beat-em-up with a healthy dose of parkour. The fighting has a very frenetic flow - I suppose, without having played it, it's got the flow of the Batman games, with it really being about maintaining a rhythm to keep the combos going, but it plays well, despite some annoying enemies at times. The parkour, too, is all handled with the minimum of fuss and none of the environmental aspects are difficult.

 

It was good fun, though if I were to criticise I'd say it perhaps could've trimmed some fat because it did feel a little padded at times - but at about 10 hours or so it didn't massively outstay its welcome.

 

Having played this after Vampyr though I'm surprised that, given this is a much earlier game, that the combat in the latter title was so poor compared to here; I can only hope that whatever comes next will take inspiration more from this than their more recent body of work.

 

I won't forget it/10

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01/01: Superhot (XBone)

 

This is the non-VR version, which I enjoyed less than the VR version. While I got the campaign narrative it felt a little nasty to me at times, whilst also being under-developed. May just be a reflection of my current state of mind though. It's also easier than VR, probably just because the throw mechanic works way more reliably. I'm not bothered about arcade/endless modes, so it was also surprisingly short. Still, Game Passed it so can hardly complain, and when it comes together it still comes together gloriously.

 

Should probably try the card game next.

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1. Luigi’s Mansion 3 (02/01)

2. Shadow of the Tomb Raider (03/01)

 

Picked it up cheap between Christmas and New Year and *really* enjoyed it. A bit OTT with the violence but good nonsense story and some great level design and set pieces. Played out like a slightly low budget Uncharted, but I have to say much preferred the stealth mechanics here, and much less emphasis on shooting

 

Very solid 7/10, maybe even 8. Surprised me how good it was. Tempted to pick the others in the series up cheap now. 
 

Look at that, two games done only three days in to the year :)

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1. Luigi’s Mansion 3 (02/01)

2. Shadow of the Tomb Raider (03/01)

3. Jenny LeClue (04/01)

 

Aaand another one! My girlfriend had played through this on Apple Arcade and said I’d like it, and she was right. I’d skipped it thinking it looked a bit meh, but it’s surprisingly good, and very nicely done. 
 

Spoiler

Apart from the end!!!! Aaaaaaarghh

 

Still, at least a sequel is likely :)


Apple Arcade has been excellent value

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18 hours ago, spanx said:

 

1. Luigi’s Mansion 3 (02/01)

2. Shadow of the Tomb Raider (03/01)

 

Very solid 7/10, maybe even 8. Surprised me how good it was. Tempted to pick the others in the series up cheap now. 
 


Do it! The other two in the new trilogy are better than Shadow. I went back to the first after playing Shadow for a quick revisit and ended up rinsing it more thoroughly than I had the first time.

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12 minutes ago, Unofficial Who said:


Do it! The other two in the new trilogy are better than Shadow. I went back to the first after playing Shadow for a quick revisit and ended up rinsing it more thoroughly than I had the first time.


Bloody hell, can get them both together for under £11 on the PSN store at the moment. That’s a total steal. 

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I might not be posting much anymore but count me in for this...

 

Last year I made a conscious effort to only ever have two games on the go at one (one meaty title and another shorter indie). Amazingly I stuck to this all year and completed WAY more games than usual.. some pretty epic 100 hour RPG's amongst them too. So I aim to do exactly the same this year. 

 

07/01/20 - What the Golf (Apple Arcade)

22/02/20 - The Witcher 3 (Xbox One)

26/02/20 - The Witcher 3: Hearts of Stone DLC (Xbox One)

06/03/20 - The Witcher 3: Blood & Wine DLC (Xbox One)

09/03/20 - Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order (PS4)

15/03/20 - Ori and the Will of the Wisps (Xbox One)

17/03/20 - My Friend Pedro (Xbox One)

01/04/20 - Doom Eternal (PS4)

04/04/20 - Resident Evil 3 Remake (PS4)

15/04/20 - Final Fantasy VII Remake (PS4)

04/05/20 - Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening (Switch)

05/05/20 - Streets of Rage 4 (Switch)

05/05/20 - Streets of Rage 4 (Xbox One)

08/05/20 - XCOM Chimera Squad (PC)

11/05/20 - The Order 1886 (PS4)

14/05/20 - Outer Wilds (Xbox One)

15/05/20 - Moving Out (Switch - CoOp)

06/06/20 - Dishonored 2 (Xbox One)

28/06/20 - The Last of Us Part II (PS4)

05/07/20 - Observation (Xbox One)

08/07/20 - Desperados 3 (PC)

30/07/20 - Minecraft Dungeons (Xbox One)

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03/01 - Sayonara Wild Hearts (PS4) - I think I might be in the minority here, but I thought this was rubbish. It’s incredibly stylish, with a great graphical style and an excellent soundtrack. The only problem is that there’s little in the way of actual gameplay. Most levels involve hurtling at speed down a linear path, whilst collecting hearts and avoiding obstacles, with the odd QTE. It reminded me of the chase levels in Sonic Adventure 1 & 2 where it’s quite a spectacle but in reality you only really have to move left and right. The odd level mixes things up - there’s a level near the end which is a homage to Rez which was great (and the only level where I got a gold medal) but all in all this is rubbish. I was delighted when it was all over. Avoid.

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05/01/2020 - Night Call (PC)

 

This is a sort of detective-cum-visual novel mashup where you, as a Parisian taxi driver, have to help the police find a serial killer by...picking up passengers and hope they can give you some clues, described as a non-linear, narrative-driven noire investigation game.

 

It's fairly lo-rent; much of the time is spent looking at a stylised map of Paris to determine who you want to next pick up and each passenger always comes with a story though, disappointingly, whilst you may have the same passenger on a different night, there's no recognition by them (or you) which would help make this world feel a little more alive. Each little vignette will have some interactive elements which I believe may lead to people opening up a little more (if you say the right thing) but I don't intend to replay it to find out.

 

Whilst there are 3 investigations, I'd had my fill after 1. The writing felt a little overwrought (and very political) and wasn't engaging enough. The investigation elements amounted to looking at a board of suspects and having clues just dotted around - Sherlock Holmes this is not. I solved the first case on the basis of a single clue (I didn't even bother trying to study anything else) but I didn't feel any sense of reward - I just wanted to finish it.

 

Still, this is one of the benefits of Game Pass - it's not something I would've ever bought but now that I've tried it the developer will have at least got something from my experience, so hurrah.

 

Previously completed:

Spoiler

02/01/2020 - Remember Me (PC)

 

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6th Jan 2020

 

Rage 2 - I have no idea why I invested so much time in this. It's not awful, it's just spectacularly mediocre. The distribution of activities and missions across the map is terrible with massive chunks being unexplored as there was no reason to go there. I finished the game 3 guns and 2 abilities short, which didn't make a blind bit of difference to the outcome of anything. 

 

Took me about 39 hours. I really should have stopped much sooner.

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Jan

 

Piczle Colors (Switch) - I've always enjoyed Picross style puzzles and this is a collection of colour based Picross puzzles, a couple of trickier ones by the last few levels but this was fairly straightforward. Iit comes in a triple pack with two line puzzle games which seem much harder to 100%. Nice to play in short bursts or on journeys though.

 

Gears 5 (Xbox One)- I nearly didn't play this as I wasn't that enamoured with Gears 4 but I'm glad I did as this felt like a big improvement on the series to me. There are a few rough edges and some annoying insta-kills,  especially for one boss that I've talked about in the main Gears 5 thread, but overall it is still a great cover shooter and additions worked well. I don't really play much online anymore but this has got me tempted to jump in with some of the extra modes. I imagine it would be an even better experience in co-op but I'm happy to move on to other games now. 

 

Half-Minute Hero: Super Mega Now Climax (360/Xbox One) - This is a game I have half played through a few times and across different platforms so I finally decided to get to the end of the game when I saw it sitting in my games list. I had a save that was most the way though the first mode so I picked up from that, I haven't done all of the modes but I got to the end of the main story thread. It still plays as well as I remembered but it is a shame that they shortened four of the game modes for this release as the levels in their place aren't the best, if I had known before that they have been part restored on the PC version I'd have gone to that instead. Good pick up and put down game that has a lot more to it than you'd think if you want to complete it 100%.

 

Wandersong (PC) - I absolutely loved this. Yes it is easy to play through and some of the platforming sections are wonky as anything but the story and characters really stand out. Genuinely made me laugh in places and I made sure that I talked to everyone as often as I could to get as much out of it as I could. It has also some of the implements music through out in interesting and different ways. As I said earlier, it isn't really a challenging game and it won't be to everyone's tastes but I thought it was charming and definitely worth a look, especially as it is available on Gamepass now and you won't have to put too much time in to work out if it is for you or not.

 

 

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Kingdom Hearts 1.5 remix

 

Loved it all but the Tarzan level was very ps2.

Went straight on to chains of memories...utter nonsense.

Now playing Kingdom Hearts 2.5 remix. You can see the difference, the evolution and the confidence the development team have in the product they’re making.

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01/01: Superhot (XBone)

03/01: Old Man's Journey (XBone)

 

Barely a game but it was a charming way to spend 90 minutes.

 

05/01: The Turing Project (XBone)

 

Sub par Portal clone that is never as good as it thinks it is.

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07/01/2019 - Control (Xbox One)

 

I really wanted to like this, but I didn't get on with it at all. The setting is brilliant and I enjoyed reading about the FBC's exploits, but everything else was a slog. I never clicked with the combat, which varied from annoying to downright frustrating at times, and I never found myself engaged with the rather slight story.

 

I don't want to sound completely negative though. There was one section of the game where everything came together to make for a real rush, helped with an excellent choice of music. I just wish the rest of the game was as fun.

 

Overall though I think this just wasn't for me.

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Grandia 2 - Being without an internet connection in my new house over the holidays meant playing old games. Initial impressions were quite favourable, it's got wide explorable areas and avoidable enemies, both of which I like in these sorts of games, and an interesting battle system that adds parrying attacks and interrupting spells onto a regular ATB (I'm quite surprised FF never nicked it), then it handicaps it by having character movement be not controlled by the player character, so it's hit or miss whether you can get it to work or not.

 

But it just wears you down through repetition, the main quest is the usual "go to place, encounter issue, investigate, do dungeon, fight boss" RPG structure. And to be fair, it does try and mix up this structure up quite a bit story wise, but gameplay wise it's still either pressing A through a lot of dialogue or endless fights through mazelike hideous dungeons with no map and inverted camera controls, it made me pine for the variety of FF's minigames.

 

I thought I was so close to the end and might as well see it through and it just kept going and introducing more shit dungeons and getting worse until I was sick of it. Overall, I think it's thoroughly mediocre in every way, and it's baffling why they thought it needed to be re-released beyond cynical nostalgia and easy money.

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9 minutes ago, RubberJohnny said:

Grandia 2 - Being without an internet connection in my new house over the holidays meant playing old games. Initial impressions were quite favourable, it's got wide explorable areas and avoidable enemies, both of which I like in these sorts of games, and an interesting battle system that adds parrying attacks and interrupting spells onto a regular ATB (I'm quite surprised FF never nicked it), then it handicaps it by having character movement be not controlled by the player character, so it's hit or miss whether you can get it to work or not.

 

But it just wears you down through repetition, the main quest is the usual "go to place, encounter issue, investigate, do dungeon, fight boss" RPG structure. And to be fair, it does try and mix up this structure up quite a bit story wise, but gameplay wise it's still either pressing A through a lot of dialogue or endless fights through mazelike hideous dungeons with no map and inverted camera controls, it made me pine for the variety of FF's minigames.

 

I thought I was so close to the end and might as well see it through and it just kept going and introducing more shit dungeons and getting worse until I was sick of it. Overall, I think it's thoroughly mediocre in every way, and it's baffling why they thought it needed to be re-released beyond cynical nostalgia and easy money.

 

Have you played the first Grandia? I really enjoyed that one but haven't played the second yet. Where do you place the second against the first, if you have?

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17 hours ago, James Lyon said:

 

Have you played the first Grandia? I really enjoyed that one but haven't played the second yet. Where do you place the second against the first, if you have?

 

I played the original and preferred it to the second. Having said that I played both of them nearly 20 years ago (I bought both on their UK release date), when being able to see monsters on screen was quite unique. I also played Grandia III but abandoned that around 20 hours in. They put too much emphasis on the battle system and reached a point where each battle would go on for a couple of minutes, which is way too long.

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Data Wing, as recommended by another thread. I'd give it 10/10 in terms of an Android game - looking at the capacity of the hardware, cost, audience and many other factors, this isn't the same sort of 10/10 you would give Mario 64 or Half-Life 2. Erm... I also feel that the game does such a good job of explaining itself, indeed this is part of the plot, that describing it doesn't matter, especially due to the brevity of how long it lasts. Since a bunch of the narratology was lifted from one of my own design documents, I'd have to give it 8/10 so as not to be congratulating myself like Skeletor - it's way different enough to the source material to be original content. ... Okay, so I liked the numerous 90's gamer jokes embedded in here, for instance one of the levels has you 'swim around' like Ecco the Dolphin were he to be stuck in an oil spill, which is like the height of gothic empathy yeah? What exactly does a dolphin drowning in oil feel like? Truth: they're bright enough not to swim into a massive cloud of black goop, so the question is pointless nihilism, but fun anyway. There's also a Mario64 joke at the end about the wall-kick tower which is supposedly impossible to scale, but hey... I dids it.

 

(games I gave up on: Skyrim, because it started to feel too corporate in respect to chaos of a giant dragons / GTAV, because it lied about where a mission started and I couldn't be bothered to pass this D&D style IQ test / Minecraft, because the villagers creep me out too much and sheep doesn't baa like that ignoramus die in a fire your whole family jokejokejoke / various others)

 

Alex Kidd in Miracle World - Holy crap, the ending of this game shit me right up, with the lightning bolt sound effects. With headphones in it sounded almost like the real thing, and my brain totally went 'ARGH I am dying of the lightnings'. I doubt that any human who wasn't mentally ill (or turned the sound off) completed this before, I had to hammer the save-states like a hundred times for the last section. < ghostbusters 2> Typical </ ghostbusters 2>.

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2 hours ago, gossi the dog said:

 

I played the original and preferred it to the second. Having said that I played both of them nearly 20 years ago (I bought both on their UK release date), when being able to see monsters on screen was quite unique. I also played Grandia III but abandoned that around 20 hours in. They put too much emphasis on the battle system and reached a point where each battle would go on for a couple of minutes, which is way too long.

 

My two cents. Loved the first one despite playing the buggy and inferior PSOne version (the game was originally made to cater for the quirks of the Saturn .) PLayed Grandia 2 about six years ago....and abandoned it 20 hours in.

 

I recommend the first and then if you like the battle system getting hold of Child of Light.

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First of the year:

 

1. Control [8]

30 Dec-11 Jan

 

This is an excellent and original AAA action adventure game with some minor issues that just bring the overall experience down a touch. I loved the location and the way the scenario allows for all kinds of reality bending events. The combat is also great fun for the most part, especially once you've unlocked a number of skills, with a great fluidity between the different moves. It encourages you to get in amongst the action, rather than hiding behind cover, and reeling in a hefty piece of scenery then chucking it back at an enemy never gets old.

 

But still there are too many regular battles with enemy designs that could've been more interesting. The middle of the game certainly started to feel a little padded out. It's also annoying how quickly battles can go wrong when you've been doing well, as you're suddenly caught unawares by a projectile or fall off the edge of something while charging about the place. The health recovery system is a nice idea but sometimes just isn't convenient, and the checkpointing system is a bit weird, adding to the frustration. Other than that, special mention to the map for being next to useless half the time. And although performance on my base PS4 mostly wasn't too bad, the loading times became an issue.

 

And yet, there's so much clever stuff to find and do, so many neat little touches or amusing characters, none of that can really spoil it. In the end, the main story is almost merely a way of introducing all the areas and powers and getting you used to how the place works. What I enjoyed most was doing all the side missions, many of which are better left till after the credits have rolled. It's here that things get more imaginative, and there are some proper bosses to take down, which were genuniely interesting and solid challenges. It's a brave game that hides so many of its best ideas, but it works in terms of gradually unravelling all the mysteries of the place. I was happy to just keep investigating and uncovering new stuff, to the point I ended up exhausting it all and getting the platinum trophy (rare for me these days).

 

After all that, I think I'd really appreciate a sequel. Perhaps one that involved travelling around different places investigating reports of strange activity. There's certainly plenty of potential in the fiction to explore, and with a few tweaks to the systems the results could be very special.

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