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OH THANK ALL THE GODS THAT'S OVER!

 

Alright, now that we've emerged from "The Year That Shall Never Be Mentioned Again" a little worse for wear, let's start the new list of our gaming conquests for 2021!

 

As per usual, games don't have to be actually released in 2021 to be discussed/reviewed/critiqued, etc. in this thread.  Heck, if you wanted to devote the entirety to 2021 to making a significant dent in your Steam backlog, then this is the thread for you!

 

 

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I finished Alwa's Legacy sequel to Alwa's Awakening and now I'm trying the Pacifist Mode where attacking an enemy is game over. It sucks being back at the beginning with no upgrades but those gravestones I saw in various places the first time through will finally be put to use.

 

So I continued playing and forgot not to attack. The game continues without you dying but disables Pacifist Mode and autosaves. I can't see myself making it through the entire game like this. I might give it another go but this could too much trouble.

 

Looks like I just need to frequently copy the save file so that I have a backup. Yup, just had to test it out after accidentally dropping a block on an enemy and it works.

 

I finished Pacifist Mode. I was backing up my save the whole time but after the above incident I didn't need to use it. There was a close call, one of the abilities can do damage when powered up and it hit an enemy but since it didn't kill it I was fine. When you get to where the last boss would be, it skips the first phase but after giving the achievement it expects you to fight the last phase but I wasn't equipped for that so I quit. 

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On 1/1/2021 at 10:10 AM, Commissar SFLUFAN said:

As per usual, games don't have to be actually released in 2021 to be discussed/reviewed/critiqued, etc. in this thread.

I would hope not considering that we’re not even a full week into 2021 yet. :p

 

On 1/1/2021 at 10:10 AM, Commissar SFLUFAN said:

Heck, if you wanted to devote the entirety to 2021 to making a significant dent in your Steam backlog, then this is the thread for you!

The entirety of 2021 for me is going to be devoted to working on my massive PS4 backlog which I continue to add to due to all of the game deals and sales that are continuously happening.

 

I’m currently playing Cyberpunk 2077, and I’m about 60 hours into it now. I’m on the final act of the story, but I still have a lot of side stuff to do. As much as I’ve been enjoying it, I kind of want to wrap it up soon so that I can move onto something else.

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20 hours ago, skillzdadirecta said:

Finished Cyberpunk 2077's main story... Although I liked some aspects of the game I'll sum up my experience with the game with THIS :|

 

Coincidentally, that's the same reaction of CDPR investors to its continuing stock price performance!

 

(It was down another 4% today)

 

 

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Hades is complete, credits rolled.

 

I have mixed feelings about the ending, similar to Bastion, but it was surprising the way it wrapped up, so mission accomplished.  The game as a whole is deserving of the praise it gets.  It's mechanically perfect.  The thoughts/fears about RNG in it are easily placated by some of the upgrades, or you just learning how to better game the systems.  Since so many of the upgrades still kick ass and provide multiple choices on pick-up, it's hard to go wrong.  Same for the weapon choices at the onset.

 

Hades reminds me of some 8-bit games, with a focus on pattern learning and recognition.  But it makes that process infiniately more enjoyable, because your arsenal and tactics change dramatically from run to run.  By the time you've gone on a few dozen escape attempts, you tear up the place, since you've learned how to game everything, from the upgrades to the enemies.  Or you can turn up the 'heat' gauge to test your skills further.  It's one of the most satisfying skill-feedback loops I've experienced in a single-player game.

 

10/10.  I'd rate it lower if I could find anything truly worth complaining about.  The best rogue-like I've played, maybe the best indie game as well on the whole.  It's a game ass video game, in the best way possible.

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Finally finished Dark Souls II. Started it in 2018, but then took a break for that year's Backlaugust, and then the next month Forsaken came out for Destiny 2 so that ate up a bunch of my time. Finally got back into it back in October, and finished it off today. Might go back to get one more Trophy, but thankfully I'm finally done it, and I can move onto Bloodborne and then Dark Souls III.

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Omori

 

I was a little hesitant to play this. I didn’t love Undertale as much as the rest of the internet did. A buddy and I bought this on a whim and have pretty much been playing it every night since. I finished it up tonight and he’s about 3-4 hours behind me. 
 

I loved everything about it. The soundtrack is unique, but fun a lot of the time. Sometimes somber, other times gives you that warm fuzzy feeling. Love the aesthetics, again, a little iffy going into it, but there’s so much charm there. I didn’t dig super deep into the battle system, but using emotions and pairing them with team members was fun. Making Kel annoy Aubrey to turn her into a DPS machine with headbutt, or having omori make himself sad so that he can ignore defense and crit people. It’s a cool system and I wish I’d spent more time tinkering, but I do what I normally do and find something that works and stick with it. The story is a trip, but I heartily enjoyed it. I don’t want to go into too much detail, there is a couple iffy things about the true ending, but I’m choosing to ignore it as I don’t think it would really change anything. 

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I finished Cyberpunk 2077. It took me roughly 70 hours to do most of the side stuff, and complete the main story. The majority of my time playing was spent doing side stuff as the main story isn’t very long.

 

It had a lot of bugs, glitches and jank more so than probably any game that I’ve played before. It also wasn’t quite the game that I was expecting it to be, and it failed to meet my expectations. But despite all of that, I still really enjoyed it. I liked its story, characters, world, gameplay and music.

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Went back and played through all the single player levels of Splatoon 2. Gotta say that for a game that's primarily online focused about shooting ink all around the place, they had some interesting levels and bosses.

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On 1/16/2021 at 7:23 PM, Brick said:

Went back and played through all the single player levels of Splatoon 2. Gotta say that for a game that's primarily online focused about shooting ink all around the place, they had some interesting levels and bosses.


That’s a game I surely would have bought by now if Nintendo didn’t charge for online.

 

I would still like to pick it up someday on the cheap along with the DLC.  I enjoyed Splatoon 1’s well enough.

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So far in 2021 I’ve washed the Spider-Man remaster on the PS5, dabbled in Miles Morales, played some Wargroove co-op (which has been pretty rad), and am dipping back into Hitman 2 before I transfer all my saves / unlocks into Hitman 3.

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1 hour ago, Kal-El814 said:

So far in 2021 I’ve washed the Spider-Man remaster on the PS5, dabbled in Miles Morales, played some Wargroove co-op (which has been pretty rad), and am dipping back into Hitman 2 before I transfer all my saves / unlocks into Hitman 3.

 

Wargroove has a good co-op mode?  That's interesting.  It's on my playlist.

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24 minutes ago, crispy4000 said:

Wargroove has a good co-op mode?  That's interesting.  It's on my playlist.

 

I’ve only played the co-op with my BIL, but it’s been fun so far. They’ve done a decent job of having the 2 different players have different things to do throughout the missions. I’ve not touched the single player at all, so I dunno how the co-op and single player compare, how much co-op content there is, etc., but I’ve enjoyed my time with it.

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3 hours ago, Zarich said:

My daughter beat shovel knight when I couldn't.  I feel I should quit now.  That is worse than a mortal combat finish.

I always feared the day my nephew would beat me in Halo. Luckily even though he loves playing Halo, he sucks at it, so I get to hold onto that for a little bit longer.

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Finished off Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, and it was pretty good, even if I find it off that a Western studio gets a chance of making a Mario game, and they end up giving up what is essentially a gun... 

 

Still I enjoyed it, and I've never actually played a turn based tactical RPG before. It's XCOM for babies I guess, but well I'm a baby to the genre. 

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Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order. B

Links Awakening (Switch). A

Dark Pictures Anthology: Little Hope. B

South Park: The Fractured But Whole. B-

Control B+
Undertale B+
Golf Story B

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Finished:

Uncharted Lost Legacy

Ghost of Tsushima- Sooo Good

Desperados 3 DLC

Celeste 

Halo 5 Campaign

 

Playing:

Persona 5 (playing a bit at a time)

Luigi's Mansion 3 (loving it so far)

RE2R (started today)

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On 1/22/2021 at 5:55 PM, gamer.tv said:

Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order. 8/10, a good game with the occasional irritating visual issue.

It must run better now. I had so many damn problems with it, it made me dislike a very good game. Need to replay it soon.

 

This game on ps4 gave me more problems than Cyberpunk on PC.

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2021 Games

 

Demon's Souls Remake (2nd playthrough)

Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney -- Trials and Tribulations

 

 

Girlfriend and I finished the original Ace Attorney trilogy. I tell ya, T&T goes into the bizarre a bit more than the other games. It certainly gets less grounded overall from game to game, but T&T goes just a bit higher. Still, solutions make sense considering the evidence, and it has probably the most intriguing story told over the course of five cases. Godot ends up being a very interesting prosecutor, perhaps even a bit more than Edgeworth (even though Edgeworth is a more endearing character), and a certain villain is quite evil. I really love the fourth case, bringing you back to one that lacks an investigation and is simply in the courtroom. But the fifth was less padded and overlong than I remember considering the quality of the story.

 

Overall, a lovely trio of games and a great conclusion. I really hope they bring the second trilogy to consoles, but apparently the upcoming Phoenix Wright compilation needs to do well in sales for that to happen.

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Currently playing (not finished) - Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean

 

This game is one of the hidden gems of the PS2/GCN/Xbox era. I played it back in like 2005, this is my first time playing it on a HD screen. It looks really good for its age. This game is right up @Xbob42's alley.

 

The story is typical "save the world" JRPG bullshit, but it has some dark twists that few games are willing to commit to. The combat is a card battle system. You build a deck, and each card has attack/defense/healing values. On each turn, whether it be offense or defense, you're trying to string cards together for a combo. The amount of cards you have in your hand and the amount of cards you can play in a combo are determined by your class level. Class levels are increased by finding specific items in the game.

 

I wouldn't say the game is hard by any means, as long as you explore and upgrade your class levels.

 

One issue I have with the combat: During long boss battles, I've noticed that the boss will straight up ignore one of my characters. You'd think that would be a good thing, but no; what happens is the ignored character ends up with just shit hands of defense cards all the time that aren't worth anything because he's not being attacked. So the boss just basically nulled one of my characters. Meanwhile, one of my other characters is just getting wailed on and can't generate defense cards fast enough, and the other one is playing healer. So the boss fight almost turns into a one-on-one.

 

There's also an interesting mechanic in that your cards can change over time. You get a card for wine, which heals you. Over time (real time), the wine turns to vinegar, which now causes damage. Strawberries, which heal, turn into rotten fruit, which can cause poison. This implores you to micromanage your decks a little more than I would like, but I think it makes things fun.

 

The battles are fun, but I don't spend my time micromanaging my decks or optimizing elemental shit, and I've only almost died once, and that was in the beginning of the game. I'm sure if you really got into the nitty gritty of optimizing your decks constantly, the game would be an absolute cakewalk. That was probably intentional by the developers.

 

Anyway, fun game. It's bringing me lots of nostalgia. It has (I think) Motoi Sakuraba's best music work he's ever done.

 

Oh, also, I wish there was a display for turn order in combat. Sometimes you get caught by surprise on defense and have to scramble, leading to mistakes. But, like I said, the game isn't really hard, so it's not like you die from stuff like that. It's just kind of annoying.

 

edit: I forgot to mention, I like how the game doesn't have a lot of the typical JRPG tropes you see in stuff like Tales Of games. There is no annoying child character. There is really no overt sexualization (even the most revealing character, Savyna, isn't particularly revealing, and no character ever says anything about it). The only JRPG tropes it's guilty of are the "YOU MEAN YOU KNEW THIS WHOLE TIME, WE COULD HAVE SKIPPED THE FUCKING GAME ENTIRELY" plot gimmicks. I have yet to play a JRPG that hasn't done that to some degree.

 

edit 2: also the voice acting is basically just the worst. Luckily you can turn it off and the characters' mouths don't move during cutscenes, so it's not distracting. Kudos to them for doing an almost entirely voice acted game in 2003 without the budget of FFX, but... ouch. It's next-level bad. Avoid by all means if you ever want to play it.

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@Fizzzzle  BK Origins is a must play if you liked it.  It's better in pretty much every way: the voice acting, pacing, story, battle system, card management, etc.  It's a prequel, but you'll have benefit of knowing what happens later from the first game.  It's much less cliched where it counts as well.

BKO's battle system is easily my favorite ever in an RPG.  It's glorious.  You do get turn orders.  But it's also a real time system now.  They streamlined a bunch of things to make it feel much faster too, all for the better.  It's feels very different at first, granted.

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I did play that when it came out, but I probably only got about 10 hours or so in. Not that I didn't enjoy it. I do plan on revisiting that game soon.

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Finished Luigi's Mansion 3. I loved it. 

Started Tales of Zestiria, Which was 10$. Its been forever since I played a Tales game. Translation is typical tales trash, but the story and battle system are fun.

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2 hours ago, BloodyHell said:

Started Tales of Zestiria, Which was 10$. Its been forever since I played a Tales game. Translation is typical tales trash, but the story and battle system are fun.

Tales of Zestiria is pretty good, I like the story and characters for the most part. But Tales of Berseria is even better, check it out if you haven’t already.

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9 hours ago, Phaseknox said:

Tales of Zestiria is pretty good, I like the story and characters for the most part. But Tales of Berseria is even better, check it out if you haven’t already.

I plan on it when I see it on sale, I have heard its one of the better tales games.

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First official completed game of 2021 in the bag, it only took me a month.

 

Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean - (replay) 8.5/10, ~51 hours. I already posted my thoughts above. I will say that there are actually like 4 boss battles in the game that are legitimately difficult, but only because I didn't take time to micromanage my decks before the battle. I stand by that if you really want to get into the nitty gritty of constantly micromanaging your decks, the game would be a cakewalk. Ain't nobody got time for that, doe.

 

Now I don't know if I want to dive straight into Baten Kaitos Origins or if I want a palate cleanser first. Like Bulletstorm or something.

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I did jump into Baten Kaitos Origins. I'm about 14 hours in right now.

 

So far, I like the direction the story is going in better (which is saying a lot, as I do quite like the story of the first game), but I have to say the combat isn't as fun. There's less strategy involved. Origins is also a lot more grindy. Also, there isn't even the littlest bit of tutorial for the combat system. I didn't even learn how to discard cards from my hand until like 2 hours into the game when I was getting my ass handed to me in a boss fight.

 

Overall, at least where I'm at so far, I'd say the first game is better. I'm still enjoying myself, though.

 

Edit (as of a couple days later), the last dungeon I did took TWO AND A HALF HOURS. It didn't even have a fucking boss fight. It was just grind, grind, grind. I was more than over it by the time I was done.

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Platinum'd Ghosts of Tsushima (needed one trophy when I was done).

Beat Concrete Genie. What a fun little game. Definitely glad I got to try it. The wife wants to play the vr mode. I might check it out too.

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Played through Super Mario World 2 Yoshi's Island using the SNES app on Switch. Fun, but no where near as good as Super Mario World. Also there were too few music tracks. Got repetitive. 

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