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What games did you complete? 2021 Edition


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Zenohell - 1cc Normal (10)
 

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Solid State Survivor - 1cc, TLB (10)

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Assault Shell - 1cc, Original single (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Void arrange (10)

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1. Forza Horizon 4 - Lego Speed Champions & Fortune Island DLC packs (XB1) - 8.5/10

2. The Gardens Between (XB1 Game Pass) - 8/10

3. Sea of Thieves (XB1) - 10/10

4. The Legend of Zelda - Breath of the Wild (Switch) - 10/10

5. Luigi's Mansion 3 (Switch) - 8.5/10

6. Titanfall 2 (XB1) - 9/10

7. Super Mario Odyssey (Switch) - 9.5/10

8. Sniper Elite 4 - (XB1 Game Pass) - 8.5/10

9. Journey to the Savage Planet (XB1 Game Pass) - 7.5/10

10. Wolfenstein: The New Order (XB1 Game Pass) - 8/10

11. Hades (Switch) - 9.5/10

 

 

12. Call of the Sea (XB1 Game Pass)

 

Reviewed on the very last page by @shirubagan, I don't think I need to go into too much detail with this stylised 1930's mystery puzzle game - I agree with his assessment.

 

There's nothing particularly wrong with this game, but I don't really think there's much right with it either.  Whereas some of the puzzles are very clever indeed, having to look around to find the vital clues is so painfully slow.  I'm not suggesting the whole thing needs to be played at the pace of Hades (man, I still love that game) but the constant backtracking, u-turns etc etc grew too frustrating for me by the end.  Admittedly, when I did solve a conundrum, it felt very satisfying!

 

On the plus side, Call of the Sea looks lovely.  I think the initial attraction to it was the Sea of Thieves-esque art style which was always going to appeal to me.  The story wasn't as engaging as I hoped, after initial promise.

 

It could well be that these sort of slow puzzle-based mystery games simply aren't for me, and I could be doing Call of the Sea a huge disservice, but I was really pleased to finish this so I could tick it off my list.

 

6/10

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11. Resident Evil Village (2021) - PS5

 

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I reviewed this for Mental Health Gaming.com. Clicks and comments always appreciated! :) 

 

Copied below (WARNING: contains spoilers for the opening 2 hours).

 

Spoiler

There’s a bit early on in Resident Evil Village when Ethan Winters, the recurring player character from 2017’s Resi 7, gets his hand chopped off. In a grim (yet beautifully-realised) cutscene, you watch in bewildered horror as his wrist slides slowly away from his still-clenched fist in a fountain of blood. It’s a horrifying and shocking moment that brilliantly succeeds in emphasising both your vulnerability and the inhuman ruthlessness of your enemies. Or it would be, at least, if it weren’t for the fact that, two minutes later, you pick up your severed mitt, plonk it back on the bloody stump of your wrist, slosh some magic water over it and then go on your merry way, hand seemingly as good as new.

 

As well as being absolutely hilarious, this sequence encapsulates the game’s darkly comic tone perfectly. While 7’s isolated southern fried setting and cannibalistic family of murderous hillbillies leavened its grimness with a heavy touch of the absurd, Village turns the goofiness up to eleven and creates something that feels more Hammer Horror by way of The Evil Dead and its sequels. Over the course of an eleven hour campaign, its more preposterously silly moments (of which there are several, most involving Ethan getting grievously injured) had me snorting aloud in stunned disbelief. While, overall, I think (or perhaps hope) this ridiculousness was by design and not chance, it’s to Capcom’s credit that they never go quite so far as to drop the audience a knowing wink and give the game away.

 

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This change in tone compared with 7 comes with a change in setting, too. Three years on from Ethan’s run-in with the Bakers, he and newly-rescued spouse Mia have upped sticks and moved to central Europe. The game begins with you putting your infant daughter, Rose, down for the night, but it’s not long before everything goes very wrong and you’re given an excuse to explore the titular hamlet and its surrounding environs. A mysterious and – this time – explicitly supernatural gang of freaks have kidnapped baby Rose for some nefarious purpose. With Mia out of the picture, it’s up to beleaguered dad Ethan to save the day once more. ‘Why the fuck is this happening again?!’ he exclaims in an early cutscene. Bless him.

 

The village itself serves as a hub that you set out from and then return to over the course of the game, Capcom revisiting a structure they haven’t used in a mainline Resi since REmake on the Gamecube. In a clever piece of design, you’re given a whistle-stop tour of the village through an intense introductory sequence that harks back to the harrowing opening to Resi 4, right down to the bookcases you can use to blockade doors and windows. From there, however, much of the village becomes gated off. This allows the developers to bring in some light metroidvania-ish gameplay as you gradually reopen areas using the keys you pick up from your forays into the four different areas that break away from the village itself.

 

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The first of these domains, the magnificently baroque Castle Dimitrescu, home to the statuesque Lady of the same name, is the best. As you creep around its opulent halls, opening secret passageways and collecting unlikely puzzle pieces in a typically silly Resident Evil fashion, you’re put in mind of some of the more memorable locations from previous games in the series: the Spencer Mansion, Racoon City Police Station, Salazar’s fortress – all are referenced here. From basement dungeon to rooftop garret, every room in the castle is rendered in impeccable detail, Capcom setting a new standard with their already impressive RE Engine. The lighting (my God, the lighting), here and elsewhere, is especially worthy of praise. Flickering braziers throw up dancing shadows against papered walls while bare bulbs cast dingy corridors in a sickly hue. Playing on PlayStation 5 with ray-tracing turned on, it’s a sight to behold. The audio design is similarly outstanding. Lady Dimitrescu’s heavy tread is perhaps even more hair-raising here than Mr X’s relentless footsteps were in 2019’s Resident Evil 2. And an encounter later on uses sound to such a disturbingly effective degree that it’s difficult to keep your headphones on.

 

When you do come face-to-face with enemies, combat is thankfully improved from 7. There is greater enemy variety and better manoeuvrability. A weapon upgrade system lifted straight from Resi 4 encourages you to track down every single treasure you can to fund your need for increased firepower as the stakes get higher. This time around, your bread and butter enemies are the lycans, half-transformed, Bloodborne-esque werewolves who scurry towards you, ducking and weaving out of the way of your weedy pistol shots, vaulting up sheer walls in a heartbeat. Capcom pitches you against these foul beasts, and their variants, in increasingly higher numbers as the hours clip by, forcing you to cycle between weapons, craft ammunition on the fly, prioritise certain foes over others and make the most of bottlenecks in the environment. From beginning to end, every enemy encounter is tense and the illusion of ammo scarcity is enough to make you feel pressured into picking your shots with caution.

 

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This isn’t quite enough to prevent repetition from settling in later on, however. If anything, I could have done with even more combat options, especially when it came to close-quarter encounters. Apart from a half-hearted shove you can only pull off once you’ve blocked an attack, there’s no option to attack enemies without using bullets except for your knife, which is so ineffective it’s hardly worth the effort. For all Village borrows from Resident Evil 4, the absence of a button that lets you deliver a swift roundhouse kick to the face was keenly felt at times.

 

Unfortunately, this sense of a missed opportunity was something I experienced elsewhere, too. Capcom appears in such a rush to keep you moving that levels come to an end just as they seem to get going, before the tension has had a proper chance to brew. A P.T.-inspired second area starts off promisingly but is ultimately anticlimactic in its brevity. Resi 4’s memorable action set-pieces are replaced with barely interactive chase sequences that feel like QTEs in disguise, punishing you with insta-death if you can’t figure out exactly what it is the game wants you to do quickly enough. Puzzles are condescendingly, laughably simple, even by Resi’s standards, while the (sometimes literal) signposting and spoon-feeding means you never truly have to engage your brain. There’s definitely something to be said for dropping an idea before it gets stale, but parts of Village feel distinctly half-baked.

 

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In the end, it’s not that the game is too short, because it isn’t, and I’m all for narrative-led single-player experiences that can be completed over a weekend. Rather, it’s depth that’s lacking here, and my lasting impression upon completing Resident Evil Village was of a game that was superficial and, at times, simplistic enough to not feel a million miles away from the VR experience that defined its predecessor. To be sure, it’s spectacular, expensive and, for the most part, good gory fun, though there’s also a hollowness to it that stops it short of greatness. I enjoyed my time with it, especially its opening hours, but for as much as it plays the hits from Resident Evils of days past, ultimately it left me wanting.

 

Completed this year:

 

Spoiler

1. Hades (2020) - PC/Switch

2. Ori and the Will of the Wisps (2020) - Xbox Series X via Gamepass

3. Tetris Effect/Tetris Effect Connected (2020) - Oculus/PC/Xbox Series X via Gamepass

4. Black Mesa (2020) - PC

5. Astro's Playroom (2020) - PS5

6. Return of the Obra Dinn (2018) - PC

7. Demon's Souls (2020) - PS5

8. Monster Hunter: Rise (2021) - Switch

9. There is No Game: Wrong Dimension (2020) - PC

10. A Short Hike (2019) - PC

11. Resident Evil Village (2021) - PS5

 

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20/05/21 - Cosmic Top Secret

 

I love finding a small indie game like this on the Switch. I wrote a full review here at Mental Health Gaming and while not perfect, it's one of my most pleasant surprises of 2021. A documentary adventure game. It's based in reality as your main character T looks to uncover the truth behind her parents involvement with Danish Intelligence during the height of the Cold War. It's full of actual documents (redacted) and lots of history on this era. So much so that it had to be cleared by Danish Intelligence before its actual release.

 

I just wish it controlled better. Everything is made of cardboard and the player character rolls around thre world like a Katamari, the issue is it can be a nightmare to control, especially during platforming bits. It's out tomorrow on Switch and if you're looking for something a little different then I'd recommend giving it a go.

 

7/10

 

Spoiler

January

10/01 - Spiderman: Miles Morales

23/01 - Yakuza Like A Dragon

 

February

14/02 - Concrete Genie

18/02 - Mega Man 11

21/02 - Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Remastered

 

March

21/03 - Persona 5: Strikers

31/03 - Mega Man X

 

April

17/04 - Mega Man X4

24/04 - Mega Man Zero

 

May

04/05 - New Super Lucky's Tale

 

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Sengoku Youkai Daikassen - 1cc (10)

 

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Solid State Survivor - 1cc, TLB (10)

Dangun Feveron - Fever arrange 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - 1cc Normal (10)

Aleste - 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - 1cc (10)

GG Aleste - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste 2 - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste - Special mode 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - Hard 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - Special mode 1cc (10)

Natsuki Chronicles - 1cc Arcade, Normal (10)

G-Darius HD - 1cc, Lambda route (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange 1cc (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange hard 1cc (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Original single (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Void arrange (10)

Assault Shell - 2-all (10)

Barrage Fantasia - 1cc Normal (7)

Barrage Fantasia - Advanced 1cc (10)

Patriot Dark - Normal 1cc (10)

Zenodyne R - 1cc Normal (10)

Zenohell - 1cc Normal (10)

 

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May

 

30/05 Depanneur Nocturne (PC) Bit of a change of pace for a Sunday evening. This short game involves you during a rainy night going into a store run by a salamander in order to find a gift for your partner. Everything is in French but if you greet the storekeeper in English she'll speak in English. All you need do is select at least one thing and then leave. It's incredibly short.

 

Except there's more here. Not much more, this is a short game that costs a little more than a cup of coffee but plenty of nooks and crannies to explore if you find the way. I spent an hour with the game getting all the achievements but I suspect there's still more to uncover! A return visit may be in order.

 

It feels a lot like Off Peak and 30 Flights of Loving. There's a fuller write up here by John Walker (ex RPS). https://buried-treasure.org/2020/06/depanneur-nocturne/

 

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30/05 Commando (PC/Arcade) I played this to death on the C64 having only seen the arcade version once or twice. However everyone in my school had this and everyone swore blind that it was based off the Arnie movie (it totally wasn't.) The C64 port was also my grandmothers favourite game (and yes, she played it loads.) I had no idea for over a decade how cut down it was, my experience of the arcade being limited to a couple of screenshots from C&VG. While again I used the rewind function a few times it wasn't as unfair as I had previously considered although it's still tough as nails. The arcade game appears to be about three times as long as the C64 port with a second run through of the first "tour" adding extra hazards before looping around. Also, is this the first in a line of "brown" games? (As in the favourite colours of the C64 and later the 360.)

 

652564-commando-arcade-screenshot-typica

 

30/05 1942 (PC/Arcade) Again this isn't a proper 1c completion, I used the rewind feature of Capcpm Arcade Stadium a bit here. But not as much as I thought I would. 1942 along with Namco's Xevious is one of the cornerstones of the vertically scrolling shooter genre. It was a mainstay of most of the arcades of my youth and I loved to play it even though it was too hard and unfair. I eventually got my hands on the C64 conversion ad played it to death and was satisfied that this was an accurate port. It wasn't. Returning to the arcade after all this time I noticed a few things. How good the graphics are despite their simplicity. How annoying the soundtrack was compared to the C64 port's lovely tune. But using rewind I also realised how fair this game was. If you are good enough it's entirely possible to do this on one credit. The enemy waves are never impossible even if you decide not to use the loop. I'd only planned to have a quick go for old times sake and ended up blowing through all 32 stages only to be surprised at the end when the game rather than looping gave up with a cheeky message!

 

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30/05 Bionic Commando (PC/Arcade) "Finished". Well sort of. There was a lot of coin scumming and some rewinding here. Bionic Commando is obviously inspirational to loads of games that followed proving that swinging in games instantly makes them better. This game led to far better (and in one case baffling) sequels. But this one itself is a little ugly and suffers the issue a lot of arcade games had at the time being too hard/ It also has a weirdly chirpy soundtrack and the prettier levels are front loaded, almost as if they knew many wouldn't get past level one.

 

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29/05 If Found...(PC) This visual novel is heavy on the novel with choices coming quite late in the game. Kasio returns to her hometown in Ireland in the 90's only to find herself isolated from her Catholic family for....reasons. And being young her friendships are not perfect. You interact primarily through erasing her diary, an action that feels satisfying but disturbingly self destructive. I won't spoil the rest except to say that if you find yourself playing this be sure to play the post credits section. It's an incredibly personal tale, perhaps so much that many won't be able to relate. I found it moving and intimate casting much the same spell as Adrian Mole did decades ago.

 

if-found.jpg

 

24/05 Final Fight (PC/Arcade) After listening to an episode of Retronauts on Final Fight I decided to have a quick run. Not too much to say really, the graphics remain amazing for the time, the gameplay is still unfair. I got through how I usually did, spamming coins although playing as Guy this time I noticed I could survive longer than I usually do with Hagar. A fun nostalgic trip.

 

652682-final-fight-arcade-screenshot-goo

 

22/05 Sunset Overdrive (PC) When I was a kid I really wanted to get into skateboarding games but they always felt too prescriptive. And then I got my hands on the "Cool Spool" a demo tape that had a pretty early demo of the C64 arcade conversion. This had no time limit and no enemies, I was free to explore and play around with the park and got quite skilled in putting together my own (limited) tricks trying to make it from one end of the map to the other stringing together jumps. Then the full game came out with the obstacles and time limit and it just wasn't the same. I've dabbled over the years but haven't really found anything that scratched that itch. Until now.

 

Sunset Overdrive is a blend of Spiderman, Ratchet and Clank and Tony Hawk with the humour of the later Saint's Row Games and the look of Tank Girl. It's colourful, over the top and glorious.

 

Sunset-Overdrive-Gameplay-Resized.jpg?q=

 

Yes it does look this good.

 

It has a pretty steep skill curve at the start with an overwhelming array of tutorials but after only a short time I was stringing together tricks with my characters superpower of being able to grind on any surface that can be ground. Once you get with the idea that you have to keep moving constantly or be overwhelmed it's almost like flying. 

 

Even though it's set in the near future everything about this game screamed alternate 80's to me. The colour palette, the humour, the amazing soundtrack. If you've got gamepass and are jealous of Playstation owners and their access to Spiderman play this. Is it better than Spiderman? No, but for some reason I enjoyed this more.

 

Previously this month

11/05 Batalyx (C64)

09/05 Call of the Sea (PC)

 

Earlier this year

Spoiler

22. 25/04 Carto (PC)

21. 24/04 The Little Acre (PC)

20. 24/04 Yorkshire Gubbins (PC) 

19. 22/04 Control:Ultimate Edition (PC) 

18. 20/04 Rain on Your Parade (PC) 

17. 02/04 Summer Games 2 (C64)

16. 16/03 Beach Head 2:The Dictator Strikes Back (C64)

15. 13/03 Assassin's Creed Chronicles:India (PS4)

14. 07/03 Alvastia Chronicles (PC)

13. 27/02 Oxenfree (PC)

12. 26/02 Assassin's Creed Chronicles:China (PS4)

11. 11/02 Beyond a Steel Sky (PC) 

10. 02/02 Stories Untold (PC)

9. 31/01 Katamari Damacy Reroll (PC)

8. 28/01 2020 Game (Browser)

7. 26/01 Observation (PC)

6. 25/01 Hades (PC)

5. 23/01 Donut County (PC)

4. 17/01 The Touryst (PC) 

3. 13/01 My Friend Pedro (PC)

2. 03/01 Tell Me Why (PC)

1. 01/01 Tales from Off Peak City : Vol 1 (PC)

 

Abandoned

Assassin's Creed Chronicles:Russia

The Medium (PC) 

 

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Blasphemous (2019)

I enjoyed this very much. A 2D Metroidvania to tide me over until Silksong comes out. I really appreciated the gruesome nature of the violence and how well it melded with the art style. Challenging combat, especially the bosses, with lots of mechanics copy-pasted from Dark Souls, which worked well. Only gripe is that I got the bad ending. Boo! 
 

Spoiler

 

09/01/2021 - Bloodborne

10/01/2021 - Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

10/01/2021 - Halo 2: Anniversary

13/01/2021 - Little Nightmares

26/01/2021 - Donut County

27/01/2021 - Astro’s Playroom

06/02/2021 - The Medium

13/02/2021 - Paper Mario: The Origami King

21/02/2021 - Spider-Man: Miles Morales

28/02/2021 - Super Mario 3D World: Bowser's Fury

03/04/2021 - Dark Souls Remastered
03/04/2021 - Halo 3

15/04/2021 - Yakuza 0

08/05/2021 - Final Fantasy VII Remake

15/05/2021 - Resident Evil Zero

22/05/2021 - Blasphemous

 

 

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Maho Shoe - 1cc (10)

 

Spoiler

Solid State Survivor - 1cc, TLB (10)

Dangun Feveron - Fever arrange 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - 1cc Normal (10)

Aleste - 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - 1cc (10)

GG Aleste - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste 2 - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste - Special mode 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - Hard 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - Special mode 1cc (10)

Natsuki Chronicles - 1cc Arcade, Normal (10)

G-Darius HD - 1cc, Lambda route (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange 1cc (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange hard 1cc (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Original single (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Void arrange (10)

Assault Shell - 2-all (10)

Barrage Fantasia - 1cc Normal (7)

Barrage Fantasia - Advanced 1cc (10)

Patriot Dark - Normal 1cc (10)

Zenodyne R - 1cc Normal (10)

Zenohell - 1cc Normal (10)

Sengoku Youkai Daikassen - 1cc (10)

 

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On 02/05/2021 at 23:29, strawdonkey said:

00. Katamari Damacy
0X. Kind Words

01. Hello Charlotte Episode 1

02. Hello Charlotte Episode 2: Requiem Aeternam Deo

03. Hello Charlotte Episode 3: Childhood's End

04. There Is No Game: Wrong Dimension

05. Mandagon
06. Heaven Will Be Mine

07. Tales of the Black Forest

08. Super Mario 3D World

09. Lair of the Clockwork God

10. Milk Inside a Bag of Milk Inside a Bag of Milk ...

11. Super Mario 3D World: Bowser's Fury

 

I tried Champions Road on Super Mario 3D world. I spent a good couple of hours on it and it was giving me absolutely no joy whatsoever, so in the bin it went.

 

This on the other hand is wonderful. It's a collection of micro-levels with five objectives on each, and then a bunch of standalone things to do as well - each shine is more like a Mario Odyssey moon rather than a Mario 64 star, since you can never have too much dopamine. The big change to other Mario games is that Bowser periodically appears and tries to murder you every 5-10 minutes, which both introduces terrain specific to when he's about, but also additional hazards like the big fucking laser fire beam he shoots at you.

 

I'd seen a few people with the complaint that they had to hang around waiting for Bowser a lot towards the end of the game, so made sure that every time he appeared I was tackling the Bowser-specific stuff, which made the end of the game no slog at all. I'd have quite happily gone for a few more islands worth of stuff to do, but it didn't feel like this overstayed its welcome. It occupies a really weird space in the Mario universe becuase it's not a full game, but it has the quality of a full game, with that amazing first-party polish.

 

Also everything is cats. Cats everywhere. We got cat clouds, cat pirahna plants, cat hedges, cat archways, cat mountains, cat bob-ombs... 

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23/05/21 - Mass Effect

 

The Mass Effect series maybe my favourite world in video games. It's just so perfectly crafted and ME1 is a great introduction to it. A little buggy in places, three times I had reload a previous save thanks to the game causing all sorts of problems, but at least it was usually quite generous with its autosaves. Did a ton of side stuff, did the Paragon path and got some action from Liara, oh, and I made sure to kill the space racist. The perfect run in other words. :) Now onto my favourite game of the generation, Mass Effect 2...

 

8/10

 

Spoiler

January

10/01 - Spiderman: Miles Morales

23/01 - Yakuza Like A Dragon

 

February

14/02 - Concrete Genie

18/02 - Mega Man 11

21/02 - Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Remastered

 

March

21/03 - Persona 5: Strikers

31/03 - Mega Man X

 

April

17/04 - Mega Man X4

24/04 - Mega Man Zero

 

May

04/05 - New Super Lucky's Tale

20-05 - Cosmic Top Secret

 

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So far:
 

Spoiler

 

1. Alba (Apple Arcade)
2. Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity (Switch)
3. My Friend Pedro (Switch)
4. Don't Look Back (iOS)
5. Bowser's Fury [Story] (Switch)
6. Super Ghouls 'n' Ghosts (SNES/Switch)

7. Yoku's Island Express (Switch)
8. Animal Crossing: New Horizons – Museum Collection Complete(Switch)
9. Donut County (Xbox Game Pass)

10. The Medium (XSX, Game Pass)
11. GTA V (XSX)

12. Monument Valley – Ida's Dream (iOS)

13. Gears 5 (XSX, Game Pass)
14. Resident Evil 7 (XSX, Game Pass)

15. Rain On Your Parade (XSX, Game Pass)
16. Titanfall 2 (XSX, Game Pass)

17. Batman Arkham Knight (XSX, Game Pass)
18. Call of the Sea (XSX, Game Pass)

 


19. The Walking Dead: New Frontier (XSX, Game Pass)

I really enjoyed parts 1 & 2 of Telltale’s Walking Dead, having played them on Vita back in the day. A weekly Game pass challenge alerted me to the fact that this was on GP/GWG so I booted it up for the points and ended up burning through it in two days. I know they’re gameplay negligible, but I really enjoyed dropping in on Clementine’s story yet again, though you don’t play as her this time, which was a tad disappointing. Great gaming for Remote Play so I can stay cuddles up with my wife and cat on the sofa, rather than my self-imposed gaming exile in the office. If you’ve played the previous games and this slipped you by, I’d definitely jump on it. If not, go back and play the others. 

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Hishou Ayu - 1cc, Normal (10)

 

Spoiler

Solid State Survivor - 1cc, TLB (10)

Dangun Feveron - Fever arrange 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - 1cc Normal (10)

Aleste - 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - 1cc (10)

GG Aleste - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste 2 - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste - Special mode 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - Hard 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - Special mode 1cc (10)

Natsuki Chronicles - 1cc Arcade, Normal (10)

G-Darius HD - 1cc, Lambda route (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange 1cc (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange hard 1cc (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Original single (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Void arrange (10)

Assault Shell - 2-all (10)

Barrage Fantasia - 1cc Normal (7)

Barrage Fantasia - Advanced 1cc (10)

Patriot Dark - Normal 1cc (10)

Zenodyne R - 1cc Normal (10)

Zenohell - 1cc Normal (10)

Sengoku Youkai Daikassen - 1cc (10)

Maho Shoe - 1cc (10)

 

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10. Nier: Automata

 

I've had an Xbox with Game Pass for six months now. This was one of the first games I played and finished (to completion with all endings A-E). But a few months later I still wanted more, so I started again from scratch and did it all over again. I think this has joined Ico and Horizon Zero Dawn as one of those games that I will simply never get tired of playing through.

 

11. Carto

 

This is just lovely. Imagine a puzzle game made of Carcassonne tiles where you walk around on the map you make, and help the people you meet. The script is funny and quite touching at times, and the whole thing looks like pages from a beautifully illustrated children's story book come to life. It has ten chapters, which take about half an hour each to complete, so it's all done in five hours or so. Pretty much perfect.

 

Spoiler

1. Dragon Quest XI

2. Donut County

3. Tell Me Why

4. Slay the Spire
5. The Medium

6. Final Fantasy XII

7. Night in the Woods

8. Wreckfest

9. Doom

10. Nier: Automata

11. Carto

 

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Mafia: Definitive Edition. 
 

Great fun, but this feels incredibly dated. Looks beautiful, but struggled to see the point in achieving much as the story isn't that engaging.
 

I guess, six out of ten.

 

On another note, wow, two games finished in the same month, so that’s two games this year.

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23/05/2021 - Renegade (Spectrum)

 

Whilst I'm by no means a retro gamer, I had a hankering to play this. Something made me think of it, I can't recall what, but no matter, through the wonders of technology I was able to find a browser version to get stuck into. And stuck I did, for a while - this is a tough cookie (or I'm just really bad these days).

 

Despite the simple beat-em-up premise, you do need to use some tactics to get through it. For the first and second stages you have some environmental assistance, in that you have something to throw people off for an easy kill; the third stage ups the anti though via a combination of all enemies wielding a weapon and a boss that can run you down and kill you very quickly; judicious use of the jump kick is the order of the day. That is the theme of the final two stages as well - though here you have scum with knives that are an instant kill if they hit you, then the final boss not only has more of them, but he too has a gun.

 

It can be a pretty teeth-gnashing affair when you get killed by a bullet when you are animation-locked into a jump and there was plenty of 'just one more go' - good job you can 'complete' it in about 10 minutes (I know the game loops around, but for my purposes beating the boss once was enough).

 

Your nameless hero's fighting repertoire remains satisfying - that backwards kick is delightful - and overall it holds up well some 20+ years later, both in terms of gameplay and graphics. Well worth a play if you fancy beating down on some hapless criminals, at any rate.

 

I'll move on to Target: Renegade soon, a game that I loved and completed many times back in the day - bet I fail at the first hurdle again though. Getting old sucks!

 

Spoiler

15/05/2021 - Lords of Xumila (PC)

09/05/2021 - Devolverland Expo (PC)

09/05/2021 - The Medium (PC)

02/05/2021 - Idle Champions of the Forgotten Realms (PC)

01/05/2021 - Shadows: Awakening (PC)

21/04/2021 - Rain on Your Parade (PC)

20/04/2021 - Wasteland 2 (PC)

04/04/2021 - Secret World Legends (PC)

02/04/2021 - She Sees Red (PC)

27/03/2021 - Greedfall (PC)

26/03/2021 - Freedom Fighters (PC)

10/03/2021 - Breath of Death VII (PC)

05/03/2021 - Dungeons & Lesbians (PC)

04/03/2021 - Quantum Break (PC)

26/02/2021 - Marvel Avengers (PC)

20/02/2021 - Life is Strange (PC)

02/02/2021 - P.O.W. (Arcade)

28/01/2021 - Devil's Hunt (PC)

24/01/2021 - A Mortician's Tale (PC)

19/01/2021 - The Touryst (PC)

19/01/2021 - Druidstone: The Secret of the Menhir Forrest (PC)

15/01/2021 - A New Life (PC)

05/01/2021 - Vostok Inc. (PC)

02/01/2021 - Call to the Sea (PC)

01/01/2021 - Suikoden (PS1)

 

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So far:
 

Spoiler

 

1. Alba (Apple Arcade)
2. Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity (Switch)
3. My Friend Pedro (Switch)
4. Don't Look Back (iOS)
5. Bowser's Fury [Story] (Switch)
6. Super Ghouls 'n' Ghosts (SNES/Switch)

7. Yoku's Island Express (Switch)
8. Animal Crossing: New Horizons – Museum Collection Complete(Switch)
9. Donut County (Xbox Game Pass)

10. The Medium (XSX, Game Pass)
11. GTA V (XSX)

12. Monument Valley – Ida's Dream (iOS)

13. Gears 5 (XSX, Game Pass)
14. Resident Evil 7 (XSX, Game Pass)

15. Rain On Your Parade (XSX, Game Pass)
16. Titanfall 2 (XSX, Game Pass)

17. Batman Arkham Knight (XSX, Game Pass)
18. Call of the Sea (XSX, Game Pass)
19. The Walking Dead: New Frontier (XSX, Game Pass)

 


20. A Plague Tale: Innocence (XSX, Game Pass)

Recommended by a friend, I decided to give this a go and ended up really enjoying it. This is more like a fully interactive Telltale-type narrative game rather than anything else. It's quite linear, with some light puzzling, but no branching paths, either literary or mechanical. The story is great, I actually cared about the characters and I think I only skipped one cutscene near the beginning - odd for me because I'm usually hammering every button on the pad by the midway point in a game because – let's be honest – video game stories are ofter mindnumbingly dull.
   It's very grim in tone, being set against the backdrop of the Great Plague and the Inquisition, but that doesn't preclude it from being one of the prettiest games I've seen yet. Asobo have managed to contrast horrible, gruesome mangled corpses and some staggeringly beautiful landscapes to great effect and it really helps drive the story in places.
  At around 12-14 hours, it's quite the investment, but some chapters are short and the game saves frequently, so chipping away at it is easy to do. The linear nature means you'll not really be stuck for what to do next for very long. Recommended.

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R-Type Final 2

I coughed up for this on Kickstarter, as I have a fond history with R-Type, from the coin-op days up until now. I even owned a couple of the PCBs (1 and Leo) back when I had an arcade cabinet. Anyway, this is a definite improvement on the previous anodyne "Final" title on PS2, but still doesn't really measure up to the series highlights. The same gimmick of dozens of different ships and weapons exists in this game, but most of them are pretty useless, and I finally chased down the one-life completion on "R-Typer" difficulty using only two of them. DLC remakes of classic stages from earlier games are promised (one already out featuring levels from III and Leo), so I expect I'll be firing this up again soon. 7/10

 

Spoiler

01/01/2021 - Syberia

07/01/2021 - Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince

11/01/2021 - Fe

13/01/2021 - The Touryst

19/01/2021 - The Gardens Between

22/01/2021 - Donut County

22/01/2021 - Virginia

23/01/2021 - The Witness

08/02/2021 - Trials Fusion

22/02/2021 - Streets Of Rage 4

14/03/2021 - Death Squared

08/04/2021 - The Medium

19/04/2021 - Control: Ultimate Edition

30/04/2021 - New Super Lucky's Tale

01/05/2021 - Kameo: Elements Of Power

08/05/2021 - Gravel

26/05/2021 - R-Type Final 2

 

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Astro's Playroom

 

I finally got my hands on a PS5, so obviously Atro was already on there.  I would have been jumping in on some other enhanced PS4 titles, but my wife had tried to get me a PS5 for my birthday earlier in May to no avail, and so I'd got in a bunch of switch games (including Breath of the Wild - which I'm playing at the moment) so I dipped into this for a quick 15 minute fix every now and then.  Which is just as well as you could breeze through the whole game very quickly.

 

I'd already played Astro Bot Rescue Mission on PSVR which is still probably my best VR experience and one of the best platformers I've played, so was familiar with the concept.  Obviously there's not a whole got of game there, but I enjoyed the love letter to all things Sony this was.  So many little fun details of characters doing there own thing as you hurtled on past.  I did not know just what a game changed the controller and it's multi-rumble thing was until I tried this... wow.  I mean they milked it all they could - footsteps, rain, hail and all manner of big bangs, but it's another great level of immersion once again.

 

I still have a few more artifacts and jigsaw pieces to pickup - which is the perfect excuse to dip in and out again for a quick Astro fix.

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So far:
 

Spoiler

 

1. Alba (Apple Arcade)
2. Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity (Switch)
3. My Friend Pedro (Switch)
4. Don't Look Back (iOS)
5. Bowser's Fury [Story] (Switch)
6. Super Ghouls 'n' Ghosts (SNES/Switch)

7. Yoku's Island Express (Switch)
8. Animal Crossing: New Horizons – Museum Collection Complete(Switch)
9. Donut County (Xbox Game Pass)

10. The Medium (XSX, Game Pass)
11. GTA V (XSX)

12. Monument Valley – Ida's Dream (iOS)

13. Gears 5 (XSX, Game Pass)
14. Resident Evil 7 (XSX, Game Pass)

15. Rain On Your Parade (XSX, Game Pass)
16. Titanfall 2 (XSX, Game Pass)

17. Batman Arkham Knight (XSX, Game Pass)
18. Call of the Sea (XSX, Game Pass)
19. The Walking Dead: New Frontier (XSX, Game Pass)
20. A Plague Tale: Innocence (XSX, Game Pass)

 


21. Tales from the Borderlands (Xbox One, GWG)

Started this ages ago and got to the third chapter and must have dropped it for the latest shiny thing. been playing it in the mornings on Remote Play with the iPad on the exercise bike and it seems perfect for that.
   This is definitely one of Telltale's finest, it looks pretty, it's well-written and actually funny in places. I've no affinity with the Borderlands series but I enjoyed the world so much that I just bought Borderlands 3.
  Next up: Batman – The Telltale Game (another TT game I dropped after one chapter).

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edit: Alien Death Mob - All stars (10)

 

Spoiler

Solid State Survivor - 1cc, TLB (10)

Dangun Feveron - Fever arrange 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - 1cc Normal (10)

Aleste - 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - 1cc (10)

GG Aleste - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste 2 - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste - Special mode 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - Hard 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - Special mode 1cc (10)

Natsuki Chronicles - 1cc Arcade, Normal (10)

G-Darius HD - 1cc, Lambda route (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange 1cc (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange hard 1cc (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Original single (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Void arrange (10)

Assault Shell - 2-all (10)

Barrage Fantasia - 1cc Normal (7)

Barrage Fantasia - Advanced 1cc (10)

Patriot Dark - Normal 1cc (10)

Zenodyne R - 1cc Normal (10)

Zenohell - 1cc Normal (10)

Sengoku Youkai Daikassen - 1cc (10)

Maho Shoe - 1cc (10)

Hishou Ayu - 1cc, Normal (10)

 

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Mafia 2 DE. Blimey, that’s three games finished this month and two of them started and finished. 
 

Played this many years ago and I still love it despite its numerous faults. This remaster is extremely buggy and that’s a real shame. Playing the original 360 game via bc is probably better. I like the story of Vito, more so than Tommy’s from the first game. There is far too much driving, but this does allow you to see some of the sights of Empire Bay. I’m in two minds about the city. From one perspective, it’s a brilliantly realised location with lots to see and it’s overflowing with period detail. Alternatively, what’s the point as there’s nothing to do in any of it? Shooting feels fine, but hit detection could be more accurate.

 

This remaster really is ruined by the bugs though. I believe it has been patched, but it doesn’t show. Duplicated dialogue, incorrect sound, music playing at the wrong time, music looping over and over, terrible pop in and something odd with car headlights. When driving at night to a particular location the sky was lit up like something from Close Encounters and the frame rate must have dropped to single figures. Continuity is dreadful too. ‘I’ll park my car here and go into the shop and buy some clothes. Right, done. Where’s my car gone?’ This sort of thing happened far too many times.

 

As a flawed game that I love I would give this seven whacks out of ten, but this poor remaster means just four.

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Limbo (2010)

Ever so slightly late to the party with this one, but it’s fantastic. Technically, it’s a very straightforward platformer, but it’s packed with imaginative design and challenging environmental puzzles. 11 years after release and it still looks wonderfully atmospheric - proof if proof we’re needed that great design trumps visual grunt every time. 
 

Spoiler

 

09/01/2021 - Bloodborne

10/01/2021 - Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

10/01/2021 - Halo 2: Anniversary

13/01/2021 - Little Nightmares

26/01/2021 - Donut County

27/01/2021 - Astro’s Playroom

06/02/2021 - The Medium

13/02/2021 - Paper Mario: The Origami King

21/02/2021 - Spider-Man: Miles Morales

28/02/2021 - Super Mario 3D World: Bowser's Fury

03/04/2021 - Dark Souls Remastered
03/04/2021 - Halo 3

15/04/2021 - Yakuza 0

08/05/2021 - Final Fantasy VII Remake

15/05/2021 - Resident Evil Zero

22/05/2021 - Blasphemous

29/05/2021 - Limbo

 

 

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Wolflame - Normal 1cc (10)

 

Spoiler

Solid State Survivor - 1cc, TLB (10)

Dangun Feveron - Fever arrange 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - 1cc Normal (10)

Aleste - 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - 1cc (10)

GG Aleste - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste 2 - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste - Special mode 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - Hard 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - Special mode 1cc (10)

Natsuki Chronicles - 1cc Arcade, Normal (10)

G-Darius HD - 1cc, Lambda route (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange 1cc (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange hard 1cc (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Original single (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Void arrange (10)

Assault Shell - 2-all (10)

Barrage Fantasia - 1cc Normal (7)

Barrage Fantasia - Advanced 1cc (10)

Patriot Dark - Normal 1cc (10)

Zenodyne R - 1cc Normal (10)

Zenohell - 1cc Normal (10)

Sengoku Youkai Daikassen - 1cc (10)

Maho Shoe - 1cc (10)

Hishou Ayu - 1cc, Normal (10)

Alien Death Mob - All stars (10)

 

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1. Uncharted 2(PS4) 9/10

2. Rayman Origins(PS3) 8.5/10

3. Astro’s PLAYROOM(PS5) 8.5/10

4. Resident Evil Village(PS5) 9/10

 

5. God of War(PS4) - Absolutely loved this, it’s up there with the best games on the PS4 in my opinion. Loved the story, the combat and it plays great on PS5 at 60fps. Can’t wait to see where they go with the sequel. 9.5/10

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东方栖霞园 ~ Blue devil in the Belvedere - Normal 1cc (Sakuya) (10)

 

Spoiler

Solid State Survivor - 1cc, TLB (10)

Dangun Feveron - Fever arrange 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - 1cc Normal (10)

Aleste - 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - 1cc (10)

GG Aleste - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste 2 - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste - Special mode 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - Hard 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - Special mode 1cc (10)

Natsuki Chronicles - 1cc Arcade, Normal (10)

G-Darius HD - 1cc, Lambda route (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange 1cc (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange hard 1cc (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Original single (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Void arrange (10)

Assault Shell - 2-all (10)

Barrage Fantasia - 1cc Normal (7)

Barrage Fantasia - Advanced 1cc (10)

Patriot Dark - Normal 1cc (10)

Zenodyne R - 1cc Normal (10)

Zenohell - 1cc Normal (10)

Sengoku Youkai Daikassen - 1cc (10)

Maho Shoe - 1cc (10)

Hishou Ayu - 1cc, Normal (10)

Alien Death Mob - All stars (10)

Wolflame - Normal 1cc (10)

 

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1. Uncharted 2(PS4) 9/10

2. Rayman Origins(PS3) 8.5/10

3. Astro’s PLAYROOM(PS5) 8.5/10

4. Resident Evil Village(PS5) 9/10

5. God of War(PS4) 9.5/10

 

6. Spider-Man: Miles Morales(PS5) - Good spin off but didn’t blow me away, looked great, plays well but it felt a bit samey especially after finished the first one last year. 7/10

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Gun-Nac - 1cc, normal (10)

 

Spoiler

Solid State Survivor - 1cc, TLB (10)

Dangun Feveron - Fever arrange 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - 1cc Normal (10)

Aleste - 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - 1cc (10)

GG Aleste - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste 2 - 1cc (8)

GG Aleste - Special mode 1cc (8)

Power Strike II - Hard 1cc (10)

GG Aleste 3 - Special mode 1cc (10)

Natsuki Chronicles - 1cc Arcade, Normal (10)

G-Darius HD - 1cc, Lambda route (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange 1cc (10)

Cotton Reboot - Arrange hard 1cc (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Original single (10)

Assault Shell - 1cc, Void arrange (10)

Assault Shell - 2-all (10)

Barrage Fantasia - 1cc Normal (7)

Barrage Fantasia - Advanced 1cc (10)

Patriot Dark - Normal 1cc (10)

Zenodyne R - 1cc Normal (10)

Zenohell - 1cc Normal (10)

Sengoku Youkai Daikassen - 1cc (10)

Maho Shoe - 1cc (10)

Hishou Ayu - 1cc, Normal (10)

Alien Death Mob - All stars (10)

Wolflame - Normal 1cc (10)

东方栖霞园 ~ Blue devil in the Belvedere - Normal 1cc (Sakuya) (10)

 

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On 24/04/2021 at 12:32, cassidy said:

No 12 of the year is Rain on my parade. 

 

Enjoyed this and a nice simple 1000 gamerscore from it as well. 

 

 

No 13 for the year and it was another Gamepass delight of a game. The wild at heart. 

 

14 will be along soon as on the final chapter of Judgment as well. 

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