I’m going to run down the games I (apparently) purchased and played or re-installed and played this year, with the caveat that I’m basing a lot of this on what dates Steam tells me. If it feels navel-gazing, its because I’m also just trying to piece together a sense of my mental landscape this year. In other words - what the Hell was I doing in 2018?
Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus R
I’m not good at fighting games. I think I wanted to see what the single player story stuff was like, wrap my head around what the appeal of these games is, and also seek inspiration for a tabletop RPG game I would run later in the year. Ultimately, I put in a total of 74 minutes.
Hot babes, funky tracks - a goofy little horny adventure game. I liked it more than I expected, but it was real short.
Slay the Spire
This was a lot of fun. I think I got it based on Patrick or Austin streaming some of it? I always say I don’t like card games but when I actually TRY one (even a virtual card game like this one) I get hooked pretty bad. I don’t think I ever Slew the titular Spire, but I had quite a few hours of enjoyment trying.
MARCHLIKE - The Month of Too Many Games
The Evil Within 2
I hadn’t tried the previous game but word on the street suggested this was worth grabbing. I mostly enjoyed it - spooky and surreal environments, seriously scary enemies, and a little twist of Resident Evil cheesiness. I dropped off about 2/3 of the way through for unknown reasons, but the Hannibal-inspired murder art will haunt me.
SAMURAI WARRIORS 4-II
I dumped a lot of hours into this game, so I must have enjoyed it. It is a Podcast Game, which is to say a game you can play without paying a lot of attention to while a podcast plays in the background. But more than that, I guess I just like Historical Japanese warfare wrapped up in over-the-top nonsense. Even tried co-op play with a friend but the multiplayer is a bad.
“But onii-chan, you’re just some part-time bum, aren’t you? On top of that, your age equals the years you’ve never had a girlfriend, right?”
The player (that’s you!) is a part-timer who lives an uneventful, boring life. - from the Steam Store Page
Street Fighter X Tekken
Again - bad at fighting games, but curious about them. And I think it was on sale?
Resident Evil 0 HD Remaster
I’ve been enjoying Mike Mahardy and Mary Kish’s Resident Kinevil playthroughs of the RE series on Gamespot, and I had never played this particular game. I was going along fine until a mid-game puzzle drove me to great and furious anger and I never went back. I should probably give it another go at some point.
Earth Defense Force 4.1 The Shadow of New Despair
Podcast game, but one I apparently sunk more hours into than any other game on this list. 148 hours. Wow. I think the loot shooter element combined with mastering the various silly classes and levels appealed to me. Also, you can make your dude start singing the EDF anthem and the NPC bots will sing along with you verse by verse, thus simulating what it is like to have friends. Five Stars out of Three.
GOD EATER RESURRECTION
What a strange game. I had been curious about this and its sequel and must have grabbed them with some gift card money. I enjoyed it for the most part, a quicker and easier monster hunter game to get into than Monster Hunter - but also fairly shallow on content.
A Couple of Porn Games I Am Too Ashamed To List Here
I was going to be transparent about this stuff but on reconsideration maybe what you buy on sale in a poor state of mind should not always be made public.
I think I bought this last year? But played it again this year? I don’t recall. I am bad at it, but I did dip in and out when the mood struck me. I have fond memories of terrorizing the Waypoint crew as the zombie who busted one of their van’s tires. Ah, good times.
Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire
This was probably the game I was looking forward to most this year, and while it didn’t amaze me I put a relatively guilt free 50+ hours into exploring the archipelago and messing with the gods and peoples of the setting. The density of the lore was more clumsily handled in the prior game, and tonally this one arced a bit more upward toward a hint of optimism as well, so it generally landed better. I found the ship-to-ship combat and narrative challenge scenes good additions to the formula, and the balance overall was better than many old-school isometric CRPGs I’ve played. Solid game.
JUNE? - started working on a character design online course this month!
Totally Accurate Battlegrounds
This was purchased on a whim and played for a whim-like 20 minutes. I think I hoped I’d be better at it than PUBG but I am still crap at Battle Royale, even if its mostly played for laughs.
JULY - still plugging away at character design
The Invisible Hours
I love the idea of Immersive Theater, but have yet to get to experience it in person. This was the next best thing, and the VR-element was entirely optional (though I’m sure it is that much more impactful if you can afford it). The story and the structure of things fascinated me, and while its ending(s) could be abrupt I still went out of my way to see all of the character’s arcs and find every little bit of virtual set-dressing to fill in the details. I also just like being in a make-believe place and knowing there’s something afoot just next door. I should really try The Sexy Brutale.
LEGO MARVEL Super Heroes 2
Hey, Lego Marvel - where’s Shang-Chi? Anyway, I assume this came out around the time Infinity War did in movie theaters, so I must have been in a superhero mood.
Marvel: Ultimate Alliance
I’d played this long ago when it first came out and liked it a lot. It fared less well on this more recent playthrough. Not a Bad game, per-say, but I found myself wanted to speed things along in the story and it not getting there fast enough. Also, I think the Lego game spoiled me with how much there was to explore and unlock.
Shadowrun: Dragonfall - Director’s Cut
I re-played this for the Waypoint 101 and enjoyed it maybe more this time around. It’s real well-written and I think I had a better handle on the gameplay, which made me more willing to prod around. Glory’s storyline (which I had not completed previously) hit me pretty hard, in a good way.
AUUGHHUST - In which I was running two or three online rpg campaigns a week to distract myself
Another well-written, smartly handled Harebrained strategy game with light RPG elements - but I just couldn’t hang with it. I think I just got distracted by things, tbh, sorry everybody. Sorry.
I have this on the 3DS XL and have been trying to beat it for what seems like years. Its a bit like a single player MMO in terms of depth and breadth of things to do, and I keep letting my desire to complete every dumb side quest get in the way of finishing the main story - which, to be honest, had grown on me. Someday, Shulk. Someday.
REM-SEPT-EMBER - the month in which I got paid for work
Having gotten paid for an odd job I put some of it on this console, my first non-DS Nintendo console in decades and my first console in almost as much time. And I like it a lot.
Breath of the Wild
I don’t have the same nostalgia for Zelda as other people, but this open-world game still impressed me with its little details and big ideas, and someday I will do a gut-check and try and actually finish it. I don’t know how long I’ve played it for, but I think I’ve helped all but one of the Divine Beasts and gotten the Master Sword.
OCTOBERSOUNDSFAMILIAR - I got and lost a job in one day this month! It was awful!
A friend encouraged me to try and finish this game this year, and I almost made it. I liked it a lot, what with its eccentric but authentic Japan-ness and mix of absurd and gritty storytelling. I had also started watching the Filmstruck (RIP) selection of the original Battles Without Honor and Humanity movies on Amazon and had fun drawing parallels between the characters of the video game and the film franchise. What stopped it for me was reaching a point where I realized I was mostly playing for the story - and I’d already seen what happens due to the Giant Bomb Endurance Run. So I’ll maybe go back to it someday, but even unfinished it was worth the ride.
Return of the Obra Dinn
Loved this game, top to bottom. It was another immersive sort of experience but with an actual investigation game element that rewarded you with more tragic scenes of strange fates on the high seas. I think it may be my favorite game I played this year?
A John Woo movie emulator in first-person chunky shooter form. Got it real cheap, its unfinished but has a lot of potential. The attention to detail in paying homage to Hard Boiled in particular is impressive for a small (if not solo?) developer.
NOVEMBERISNOW - depressed and full of high blood pressure? play more games!
I don’t like Pathfinder the tabletop RPG, but the CRPG is okay. It leans into some grognard-ass bullshit here and there, but there’s glimmers of something new in the kingdom management stuff and some good writing. Once they wring out all of the bugs and balance issues, I’ll probably return to it.
I got the digital version in a fit of boredom and, while its a pretty repetitive mix of No Man’s Sky (which I never played) and Destiny (which I never played) I like arcadey space shooters and like the kid-friendly setting and characters (except Levi - he’s the worst).
Capcom Beat 'Em Up Bundle
I like beat 'em ups; I enjoyed them in the arcade, and even with the obvious quarter-sucking design elements there’s enough fun art, music, and animation going on for me to still get a kick (har) out of them. I was especially happy to get to play some of the more obscure titles I’d never seen before.
Divinity: Original Sin 2
As a fan of tabletop games, CRPGs, and the previous Divinity (which I never completed), I picked up this game back when it first came out and completed it not too long after. The reason I revisited it this year, though, was to play it co-op, start to finish, with some online pals of mine over the months, working our way through the epic tale of gods or something. We had a lot of fun, especially when we screwed up; there was a hilarious session where the entire town of Driftwood attacked us and we got split up and started three MORE fights. And another session where I got pissed off with the Dwarves and just killed a lot of them at a wedding party - thereby failing to stop a terrible event later on. We’ve looked at the GM toolbox mode and found it a bit ‘meh’, but getting to play a well-made CRPG that let us roleplay our characters AND be in the same party was a blast.
another porn game i won’t name
im a sad
The original PC flight sim based on the old FASA tabletop game holds up Really Well. While its got some issues running on Windows 10 the main gameplay works well, the flavor of the pulp adventure setting was just what I needed, and zipping around in your own customized fighter doing stunts and taking down zeppelins just doesn’t get old.