E3 is the best time to start a conversation about older games, right?


#1

I was browsing Xbox Game Pass like two days ago and came across Sunset Overdrive, a game I hear is real good. Well, let me tell y’all, it really is. I just got an Xbox One S recently so Game Pass has been really useful for trying out some Xbox exclusives and just some stuff I never got around to like Rise of the Tomb Raider, but wow, Sunset Overdrive is incredible.

Did y’all know you can equip any of the character customization options on any of the 4 body types, and the body types aren’t really tied to words like sex or gender? It’s kinda wild, this game came out in 2014. I can’t even think of another big game besides Battletech that lets you use any customization option on anyone. The game isn’t perfect - there’s some kinda racist vibes around Asian-appearing women and some language like calling people “crazy” and stuff, but it seems like the character customization stuff all relates to the game’s “be yourself” message it occasionally remembers it has, and whatever the reason, I think it’s really cool.

Has anyone else recently dug up an older game that’s new to you? I’d love to hear about a similar experience. I’d also love to just talk about Sunset Overdrive if anyone wants to do that.


#2

So I saw that new Shadow of the Tomb Raider game and realized that I didn’t finished Rise of the Tomb Raider. So I redownloaded it, started a new game, and realized that it’s freaking incredible looking on the X. I really enjoy how that game shows a maturing Lara and how fun the puzzles are in the tombs. The combat is also pretty fun and it’s just so pretty.

Sunset Overdrive is a great game and I would like a sequel to it one day, please, hopefully, maybe.


#3

I have had a 25% complete Rise of the Tomb Raider playthrough on my Steam for a while and I just can’t seem to get back to it. Now might be the time!


#4

We have like 3 months before the new one launches? I highly suggest that you do it!


#5

I’ve been playing Rise of the Tomb Raider as well but I can’t seem to stick with it! I really liked the first but, I dunno, I feel like this one is the same game with a new story, with not much new mechanically. It’s fun, and there’s some things I really like such as how scrappy Lara’s movement animation is, but sometimes it feels a little squirrely to control and I jump wrong 4 times and watch Lara die or I can’t figure out a puzzle so I have to see her hit her head on a rock 6 times and it bums me out. And these are basically the same problems I had in the first game. The Shadow of the Tomb Raider looks like has soooome new mechanical things but I’d love to see some new structural stuff, which I don’t know if we will.


#6

Yeah. I played the original Tomb Raider reboot front to back, one of the few games I ever 100%. But I fell off Rise for some reason several hours in. Just didn’t get its hooks into me the same way.


#7

I want to play Sunset Overdrive so badly, but since I have everything but an Xbox, that will forever be a dream. (Please Microsoft, make it PC cross-play like literally every other game you’ve released since.) That aside, I actually have two experiences pretty related to this.

First, this isn’t actually all that recent, but throughout high school (when I first really expanded beyond Nintendo consoles and games), my gaming hardware was a laptop with a pretty good CPU and… one of those nameless Intel integrated graphics chipsets. So it could run most things, but only the fairly old ones well. This led to me developing a huge appreciation for several older FPSes, because the Half-Life series and Deus Ex were about as far into the future as that machine could go. I don’t know if I would have developed that same affinity for them if I’d grown up with the PC I have now, which would have been a shame. Those are still great games.

And then second, I spent last summer doing archival work at a video game archive (at the University of Michigan, open to the public, if y’all are ever in Ann Arbor check it out!) which entailed playing a lot of older games for the first time. I found a lot of older games there I really liked. And in particular I just fell in love with Ico. There was something about how dreamlike it all was, and how it felt like all of its challenges and puzzles were being viewed through a child’s eyes. Like this extended imagined game where the danger felt both hidden and incredibly present at the same time. And so many good quiet moments.


#8

I picked up Horizon and Gravity Rush 2 for cheap this week, so I’m looking forward to pretending I have the free time to really dig into those.


#9

I think my gaming goals are finish Tomb Raider the 2nd and then tuck in to Divinity Original Sin 2 when the enhanced edition comes out.

EDIT: OH and hollow knight for switch. That’s it. That’s all my gaming time for the forseeable future.


#10

I have been trying to talk up Sunset Overdrive since the first time I played it. I love that game. It’s fun, movement feels amazing, it has a great visual style, great soundtrack, and the character creator is so much fun it’s wild. (The woman who voiced my character was fantastic, too.) Body types - and not identified by male/female! Every piece of clothing is totally unlocked to gender/sex/etc.! Tons of hair, tons of color & pattern stuff - it was great.

I really genuinely loved that game - it’s such great fun.


#11

It’s really incredible how they managed to keep thinking up novel things to do for missions. Variety doesn’t feel like the right word to me; in an almost (but not quite) Titanfall 2 way there’s a bunch of interesting scenarios that have you using your abilities in new ways that generally don’t come up again. The game is throwing wild stuff at you at a pretty good rate that keeps it really engaging.


#12

My main memory of Rise of the Tomb Raider, is hiding in bushes, lying in wait for patroling PMC types and shanking them with a pick axe. I also seem to remember these dudes just gossiping expositional dialogue the whole time as well. From what they’ve showed of the third game at E3, it looks like much of the same, except you’re in a jungle… and apparently it is all Lara’s fault.

I could maybe do with playing Rise again, I seem to remember shrugging after my first playthrough of the first reboot, but playing the PS4 remaster made me appreciate the direction they went with Lara. She’s given all these ludicrous obstacles and challenges, but she looks on with the mentality “I can do this.” which I think connected me more to the character - unlike say Uncharted where it’s all just ‘fuck and gee-whiz! that was a close one!’

That said, if you get the chance to play the DLC for Rise - I’d highly recommend the Croft manor DLC. Best way to describe it is, Tomb Raider meets Gone Home. It’s just Lara alone and exploring this big delapidated old house which holds many mysteries and memories from her youth. It’s a lot more slower paced - no combat, more puzzles, more atmosphere, more collectibles that shine a light on Lara’s past, her relationship with her parents and more than a few nods to the old games from the 90s. Though Shadown is likely to be another big action and adventure, I do hope the developers find time to go a bit slower with the plot like they did with the Croft Manor DLC.

Again, going back to Uncharted, the second game had that moment in which Drake awakes in this mountain village. It’s a real change of pace after the action of the train level, but it’s just the character slowly ambling through this village of people that don’t speak his language. It’s not something that Drake can just quip his way through, it’s just this nice quiet that connects to the globetrotting travelling romance of it all. I feel it was a founding block that Naughty Dog slowly began to put into their other games, especially The Last Of Us: Left Behind DLC and Uncharted 4.


#13

I’ll also throw in to say that Sunset Overdrive is pretty good. The 2000s mall-punk aesthetic is tough to get passed at first, but soon enough the grinding, jumping, and shooting pushes the Jimmy Eat World aesthetic to the back of your mind. Really fun and more people should check it out!

As for me, I’m currently picking away at Assassin’s Creed Syndicate. It’s fine for what it is, but it just feels like I’m playing a higher resolution ACII. The grappling hook is neat and compensates for the fact that buildings got way taller in the industrial era. Still, it’s been a couple years since I’ve touched an AC game so there’s enough here to see me through to the end of the campaign. At this rate, expect to see my impressions of AC Origins sometime around 2021.


#14

I picked up Syndicate a while back when it was on sale, and really wanted to like it more. But the more I played, the more I wished that it was just Evie as a playable character. Jacob is just a terribly dull, boorish character that I had zero attachment to, and at the time, all I could think was that I’d rather be playing as Ezio. So yeah, I never finished it.

As far as compelling/likable characters go, AC:O blows Syndicate out of the water. So if you tire of it, just skip it and move on to Origins. Plus it actually freshens up the core gameplay loop, so it definitely won’t feel like higher res ACII.


#15

Sunset Overdrive is the game that most makes me regret never getting an X-bone. Nothing else has ever really caught my eye, exclusives-wise, but that game looked great to me and I still find myself thinking about it at times.


#16

I’ve tried Sunset Overdrive a few times. I fell off it a while back, and for me, it’s difficult to start up a game (especially with combat mechanics that keep building like they do in SO) where I left off if it’s been a long while. So I figured, “Oh, I’ll just start a new game!”.

Only to find out that it’s not really an option. You have one save tied to your account. You have to actually go into the Xbox system management to delete your local game data, THEN DISCONNECT YOUR CONSOLE FROM THE INTERNET so it doesn’t pull cloud save data. Only then can you get a fresh start.

And then when I finally went through with that, I had forgotten how slow the early game is before you’re given all your traversal skills. Maybe I’ll try to boot that one up again and see how it goes.


#17

OMG Evie is totally the superior Frye. If it wasn’t for story missions I would never pick Jacob and his stupid hat.

And yeah, I’ve heard great things about Origins. And it’s a great showcase for the One X, so I might grab it sooner than later. I might consider doing a back-to-back with Odyssey as that looks pretty good too.


#18

Sunset Overdrive only has like 4 songs and they are middling songs and I will never forgive it for that


#19

That sort of thing re: you have to disconnect from the Internet, delete your save, re-launch, stop sync before it re-downloads, etc. is more common than I realized. Forza Horizon 3 and, as it turns out, AC: Syndicate are the same way, and that’s just the ones I have experience with. It’s weird.


#20

I’m about halfway through Origins right now and it’s really fantastic. I just slid down a pyramid while screaming SPARTAAAAA because I’m into historical accuracy and scaring my dog