I started Everybody’s Golf yesterday and oh my god I love it so much. It’s so perfectly escapist. Every bit of this game is cheery, bright, and pleasant. As an American, I especially like the way Japanese games like this are so transportive for me. It just feels so distinctly like somewhere else. I love it!
Y’all know what’s a really good game? Final Fantasy 9.
I finally got around to playing it after buying it in steam a year ago, and I really like it. Hell, except for the world map (which looks like utter trash) the visuals hold up pretty well thanks to the style. The introductory sequence at the theatre has me smiling so much I almost hurt my face. I had completely forgotten I used to really love jrpgs but this is exactly what I needed right now.
I think the beginning of 9, with all the perspective switching while the stage play happens, is the best opening of any of the Final Fantasy games. I’ve never actually finished that game but I’ve started playing it like five or six times and that opening sequence is always awesome.
I haven’t played the first one. And honestly I stopped after Fort Joy (chapter one) in DOS2. But I felt like those 10-15 hours were worth it.
My advice (for enjoying DOS2 anyway) would be to think of it as a toybox. Poke and prod and see if anything interesting pops out. The games feel so open that I don’t think you would need to do much micromanaging for items and whatnot.
Just finished Shadow of the Colossus Remastered. What a beautiful experience, made me really sorry I never played it when it came out originally.
The mechanics are perfectly in tune with the story, honestly reminded me of Brothers in that way, but with much higher production.
Also it stuck me that many parts of Zelda BotW seem to be inspired by this game. If only BotW had 16 colossal puzzle enemies to take down hidden in that wonderful world.
I’m in the midst of marathoning the Souls series (minus Demon’s Souls because I do not own a PS3), which I have never played before. I have been surprised by each game so far, first by how much Dark Souls 1 measured up to my expectations for it, second by how much I disliked nearly everything about Bloodborne besides its writing, parrying, and maybe four or five of its bosses, and now by how much I’m enjoying Dark Souls II, which I came into with very low expectations because of The Discourse. I’m only a quarter of the way through though, so maybe that will change.
I bought FFVII after Austin talked about it on Lore Reasons and I thought it would be interesting to experience a super dated piece of the “Video Games Canon” for the first time in 2019. It is with a heavy heart that I must announce it rules
There’s been a weird pseudo-backlash against it but Final Fantasy 7 is a pretty damn good game with a pretty dope story about eco-terrorism and identity and also there’s a quasi-immortal cat guy?
anyway, if you need help, archive.org has helpfully preserved The Best Strategy Guide I Ever Bought
I’ve dug into Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire now that the turn-based mode has been added. I really enjoy the detailed world and the setting is more unique to me than the first game.
I am working my way through Nioh, because I wanted to play it before Sekiro irreversibly raises my standards for samurai/ninja action games next month. Nioh is an extremely awkward game, but is pretty good anyway?
It’s a weird middle ground between Dark Souls/Bloodborne and Ninja Gaiden that doesn’t quite excel at any of the things those games do, but does a pretty ok job at a bunch of the weird new stuff it brings to the table. The loot system is obnoxiously terrible and a huge time-wasting pain to deal with, and the mission based structure clashes really hard with most the souls-like elements due to how it traps you in a location/situation where you have to abandon progress in if you get stuck (and need a rare consumable to leave!). The combat is great fun when it clicks, but it is just a little bit too complex and a little too stiff to allow for easy entry into any sort of a flow state during a tough fight. The enemy and level design, while sometimes really neat visually, is largely only slightly above average and doesn’t come anywhere close to what Souls games and Ninja Gaiden pull off. The design of the difficulty learned all the wrong lessons from Dark Souls fan mindsets and completely fails to understand most of the subtle ways that Dark Souls helps, teaches, and encourages you to improve your skills and keep trying. The vaguely explained items and skill tree system only serve to make things more confusing and at their worst discourage the player from even trying to engage in the deeper systems that could make things less difficult, because of how poorly presented they are. The side missions can be pretty repetitive and pointless. Its just generally a mess.
HOWEVER. I actually still like this game a lot. It feels like a lost PS2/PS3 game in way that I enjoy, something about the level layouts, the feel of the controls, the sound design, the presentation of the UI and map screen, it does not feel like a modern game in a way that is weirdly refreshing despite the awkwardness and jank. It feels like this team tried their best to make a huge complex game with pretty limited resources. The combat is really fun when I’m able to internalize the controls and weird timings of the combos and ki-pulse enough to actually use them effectively. This takes great concentration but it is pretty rewarding when I can pull of a perfect series of attacks and dodges and completely destroy a tough enemy. The story is also extremely enjoyable and I love the tone of it, it is weird and funny yet completely serious about itself in a way that you just don’t get much anymore. The bestiary of Yokai is super refreshing, even if you still end up fighting skeletons and soldiers most of the time. Finding the Kodamas hidden in each level is fun and cute. The music is great and the atmosphere is generally very well done.
So, Nioh is a mess, but a very enjoyable one despite (and sometimes weirdly because of?) it’s flaws. You can really tell that it’s a game that was in development hell for 15 years and work on it was fully restarted multiple times. In that sense it’s a miracle that it ended up being a pretty decent game. I hope the sequel gives Team Ninja an opportunity to refine and improve all the things they did right without all the baggage of those 15 years of development hell.
I don’t really mind the hate for FF7 but I absolutely love the game. I’m glad to hear someone can pick it up for the first time in 2019 and still get something out of it.
Been playing Mafia III and sports simming with NHL 18 (not glamorous I know!), but just picked up Hollow Knight Voidheart Collection for $7.50 on PS4, a little scared to start because high difficulty often translates to high frustration levels for me in games, really really hoping I fall in love with this game as so many others have seemed to!
Why would it be super dated? And why would you announce with a heavy heart? It’s an all time classic, absolutely immortal piece of work in games. I think the perception of people thinking it’s not that good is much bigger than the actual number of people thinking it’s not that good.
I’ve crawled out of the Warframe hole I put myself in for a few months and am not sure where to go. I have like 6 different games started at the moment. The theme is “catching up on games everyone loved ≥ 6 months ago.”
Into the Breach, where I’ve put in probably 10-20 hours and have a few wins with probably like 3 of the squads.
Undertale for the first time, which has been amusing and interesting in how it handles “combat” but is unfortunately not action-oriented enough to keep me from getting sleepy while playing.
Dead Cells, which I played a lot of a few months ago, put down for a while, and now pick up again after I get sleepy playing Undertale.
Bloodborne for the first time, which I expected to love after Dark Souls and Dark Souls II and was surprised/dismayed when it took me at least 6 hours to get to and beat the first boss.
Apex Legends when my friend group has room for me and the one horrible person in said friend group isn’t playing.
Hollow Knight for the first time, which I bounced off once a few months ago and was convinced to try it again after everyone said how good it was.
I’m going to see if I can somehow simultaneously play all these games at the same time. I will probably not survive.
In recognition of how Devotion has been pulled over a joke about Xi Jinping I played through Detention, the studio’s (Red Candle Games) previous game. It’s fantastic. Said by someone who barely touches horror at all, with which to say that I can’t say how it stands up against other games. But it’s an enticing story that had me gripped all the way through.
I really do want to play Devotion now, whenever it (hopefully) becomes available again.
I’m trying out World of Final Fantasy to fill the Kingdom Hearts 3 shaped hole in my heart left after I finished all the battlegates.
It’s pretty nice. I like the monster designs. They’re all very cute/cool. I’m hoping combat gets deeper as I go since I’m only about 3 hours in and so far it’s just been “use your strongest attack”
The only thing I really don’t like is Tama. I’m pretty over cute high voiced mascot animals that stop you every 30 feet to tutorialize. Preeeeetty annoying.
I’ve been dipping in and out trying out the various things on Game Pass.
I’ve never had an Xbox so I thought this was a good opportunity to finally play the Halo series, but I’ve found that it (at least the earlier ones) doesn’t hold up super well. I realize it’s the Seinfeld Isn’t Funny effect because it was such a revolutionary game at the time, but coming off of just playing the Titanfall 2 campaign and playing Apex Legends every day, it’s really hard to go back to such a simple and straightforward experience.
I also tried Ashen for a few hours based on Austin’s recommendation. The art is gorgeous and I really like the theme of community building, but it just reinforced the fact that Souls-like combat just absolutely is not my thing. I totally recognize why it’s unique and interesting, but to me it feels like fighting underwater and I can’t stand it.
Questionably a game: I’ve also been getting really into crossword puzzles the last few weeks. Highly recommend as a zen activity either early in the morning or right before bed.
Played Cultist Simulator. I feel like I should have hot takes for this one, but honestly I love and hate it in equal measure which makes for a less hot take than a confused one.
Played ACIII as part of my ‘I got most of the AC’s for super cheap so I feel like I should play them’ project. There could have been a really good discourse here about colonialism and indigenous issues, but they f’d it up constantly. There’s a read that the f’ing it up the way they did is a subversive text, but I don’t think it’s nearly good enough to deserve this read.
Playing Anthem. I like it. It’s flawed. Feels fixable.
Playing Wolfenstein: The New Order. I still don’t understand how this is this good. I really don’t. There’s no way a stupid pulp nazi shoots game should be this interesting.
I’m still all-the-way-the-fuck-in on Sunless Skies
Anthem! It’s all I want to play. I honestly don’t know if The Division 2 will keep my attention. Running around DC (which is 15 minutes from where I live) may not be that exciting after flying around in Anthem.