What are you playing today?

Speak your mind, or lack thereof. There may occasionally be on-topic discussions.
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Tsuyoshi-kun
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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Tsuyoshi-kun »

Tinkering with my Nintendo 3DS. Played some Mario Kart 7 on it. Plan to play Super Mario 3D Land on it soon.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Radrappy »

gundam vs gundam extreme versus. It's merciless.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Neo »

Finally caved in and bought Sonic Generations on Steam for a little over 10 bucks. S-Ranked and got all red rings in Green Hill and Chemical Plant. The game runs choppy as hell in what they call the "lowest" settings, and attempting to use a controller resulted in Sonic perpetually breakdancing to the left, but I bought it with Christmas money so I can pretend somebody gave it to me and I reluctantly forced myself to play it. The game is not terrible, the music is okay and the graphics are the usual Sega fare (very, very pretty), but it is most definitely not worth the original asking price.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by gr4yJ4Y »

I'm sure you'd enjoy it more if you had proper controls. I felt that the game gets better as you get into later levels. The Genesis levels doesn't entirely do the game justice.

I've been playing Super Meat Boy because someone told me about Humble Indie Bundle 4 and reminded me that it'd been sitting on my computer untouched for some time now. Even though I'm playing on a keyboard (the game asks you to use a controller at boot-up every time) I'm still enjoying it. I like the short levels (all under 50 seconds so far) and pure platforming. It's a tough game - as you've likely heard by now - but it's always my fault when I mess up. It's a good contrast to Sonic Generations, which was on the easy side. There looks to be a good amount of levels to unlock and things to encourage replay. It's the most fun I've had with PC gaming since I got my laptop last spring. I've disregarded Skyrim since I got it a couple of weeks ago because I've been playing Super Meat instead.

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Post by Senbei »

Also picked up the Humble Indie Bundle. Haven't played too much yet. That Bit.Trip Runner game is pretty neato, but I'm horrible at it. Finally bought L4D and L4D2, though I'll likely only have access to a PC over holiday break.

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Neo
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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Neo »

gr4yJ4Y wrote:I'm sure you'd enjoy it more if you had proper controls. I felt that the game gets better as you get into later levels. The Genesis levels doesn't entirely do the game justice.
The thing is, I'm not sure what they're trying to do with the controls anymore. Remember in Sonic Adventure, if you pressed down on the control stick Sonic would immediately start running towards the camera? In Generations, I press down, then hit boost a while after and Sonic boosts to the left and off the level because he was still turning around. What is this, fucking Resident Evil?

So I S-Ranked and got all the red rings in Sky Sanctuary, beat up Metal Sonic twice and what what do you mean I have to complete stupid side missions to proceed beyond the first three stages are you fucking kidding me

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Jingles »

I also got the Humble Indie Bundle, and have been playing Jamestown. It's very fun for the most part, great music and graphics too, but to get to the end of the game you'll have to go through each level (there are 6, I believe) 5 times on each difficulty. It even has an achievement for the Steam gift pile!

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Locit »

Neo wrote:So I S-Ranked and got all the red rings in Sky Sanctuary, beat up Metal Sonic twice and what what do you mean I have to complete stupid side missions to proceed beyond the first three stages are you fucking kidding me
You have to play a total of three, all incredibly easy, one from each level. Calm down, buddy.

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Neo
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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Neo »

Locit wrote:You have to play a total of three, all incredibly easy, one from each level. Calm down, buddy.
Sorry, it's just that it's been a while since I've played a recent Sonic title. I guess I forgot what it was like!


(It was supposed to be a joke, but whatever. After playing the first three stages back to back I wasn't expecting them to pull away the game and say "No more until you race Knuckles, press 47 buttons and play the Balloon Trip edition of the level." I was being a bit naive!)

(Since then I've S-Ranked all the missions in Green Hill and Chemical Plant, or at least the 10 they let me play, anyway, I don't know where the remaining 5 are. I assume they'll appear later somehow.)

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by K2J »

When you say "the remaining 5", are you referring to Sky Sanctuary's missions? If so, all missions for a section (trio of levels) should appear at the same time, IIRC. Though I forget the exact layout of the hubworld, so try starting from the Chemical Plant area and moving right. Keep in mind that you can stand on the text above stage entrances, too.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Neo »

K2J wrote:When you say "the remaining 5", are you referring to Sky Sanctuary's missions?
No. There are (to my knowledge) 10 challenges per stage, 5 classic and 5 modern which share gate positions in the hub. But the completion counter reads x/15, so there's 5 more somewhere, though as far as I can tell it's nothing I can access right now.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by K2J »

You're really confusing me, because you seem to be saying "No, you're wrong. Here, let me provide evidence to your theory."

Do you see both Act 1 and Act 2 counters? And they both say 10/15? And you've completed 5 missions each for Classic and Modern Sonic in both Green Hill and Chemical Plant? If so, then the only conclusion is the other 5 are for Sky Sanctuary. If the doors aren't showing up (which they should), then make sure you've completed both regular Sky Sanctuary acts (i.e., Knuckles has appeared in the hub).

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Neo
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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Neo »

I assumed each counter was for each stage, and not one counter for all the Act 1s and another for all the Act 2s. That makes zero sense.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Green Gibbon! »

I finally got an American Wii to play DK Country Returns, but as long as I've got the thing, I'm wondering what else is out there I should pick up. I want to try the Bit Trip games definitely, but is there anything else I should try? Only American games, I mean. How's Punch Out?

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Dash »

Punch-Out!! is really great. The gameplay seems pretty much the same as Super, with the Wii Remote being the recommended playstyle, but I actually got pretty far using Wii Remote + Nunchuck (this is coming from someone who got a lot of play out of Wii Sports Boxing though). You could fault it for sticking to the tried and true, but they do it so well and with such character it's difficult not to love. Maybe consider getting Next Level Games' other effort Super Mario Strikers as well. The actual attitude the Mario characters get to display is entertaining as all get out. Fun arcade soccer/football too!


I picked up on the Humble Bundle as well. Jamestown is fantastic. It's like some long-lost SNES shmup with a wild sci-fi meets colonial times art/story. Playing it with a Wii Classic Controller and it feels great.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Dr. BUGMAN »

Boom Blox is a must (I hear the "sequel" pretty much obsoletes the original), along with excitebots, for multiplayer gaming. A boy & his blob is alright, too.

Been playing Giana Sisters DS, which got a quiet NA release BTW. 'sallright. Picross 3D is meh.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Locit »

Was Lost Winds American-only? It was Wii Ware, and I really enjoyed both it and its sequel (second episode, whatever). In any case, if you haven't picked it up yet, you should.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Blount »

I bought Lost Winds, finished it in one sitting and never went back to it. It took me about 3 hours, I think, but I enjoyed it. I just keep forgetting I have it, so I guess it's not all that memorable.
Green Gibbon! wrote:I want to try the Bit Trip games definitely
I only recommend these if you have a lot of patience and very fast reflexes, because it seems like the kind that would otherwise make you want to break something. Some games are noticeably better than others, but I still loved the series as a whole. Speaking of, you can grab Bit.Trip Complete, which has all the games in disc format, plus extra levels and a soundtrack CD. There's also Bit.Trip Saga for the 3DS (basically the same thing, minus the extras).

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Green Gibbon! »

A boy & his blob is alright, too.
I actually saw that in a bargain bin at Target when I was in Hawaii for like $8 or something. I was a heartbeat away from picking it up, but I ended up getting cereal instead...


I also just now noticed that Fragile was released in the states. Did they leave in the gay kiss? Incidentally, was Captain Rainbow ever released in America? I can't imagine Nintendo touching that or approving anyone else to do it.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Tsuyoshi-kun »

Fragile I don't know, but Captain Rainbow never made it outside of Japan.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Yami CJMErl »

I think Fragile was ported and named "Fragile Dreams" over here.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Delphine »

Green Gibbon! wrote:I was a heartbeat away from picking it up, but I ended up getting cereal instead...

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Green Gibbon! »

Fruity Cheerios, if you must know.

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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Crisis »

I just finished Deus Ex: Human Revolution. I've been holding back a lot of thoughts, so forgive me if I just splurge for a while.

---

The game is really good! Definitely worth checking out if you're into the stealth genre. Obviously, it's not as groundbreaking as the first game, but this is a refinement of the formula and as such it works really, really well.

Some aesthetic stuff first - the game looks gorgeous, although it helps if you're a fan of black and gold, because it's pretty much everywhere. It's really nice looking though. (This is where my lack of artistic vocabulary begins to show.) The game still has visually varied environments, and they try to be creative with the colour scheme, using it as a kind of persistent theme that ties the game together in interesting ways. It's nice that the game has its own visual identity, although I can imagine it gets a bit dull on multiple playthroughs. That said, the game never truly looks dark, which is kinda weird since that was the entire first game's schtick. You usually started your missions outside in the dark overworld before sneaking your way into cramped, well lit buildings. It helped build the atmosphere and added depth to the gameplay, but that seems to have gone over the heads of the developers.

Character designs are surprisingly good. Malik and Adam Jensen were the standouts for me. It does get a bit wannabe anime at times.

The voice acting is much improved over the first Deus Ex. Which isn't saying much - the first Deus Ex had the worst voice acting I've ever heard, in anything. Human Revolution isn't so bad, but it's not great. David Sarif hams everything up and often puts an emphasis in the wrong place, it gets irritating. I didn't even recognise Hugh Darrow's accent - apparently it's supposed to be British. The actor behind Adam Jensen is clearly trying to do his best JC Denton impression so every line comes out as gravelly as possible. Malik and Pritchard were spot-on, though.

---

The plot has its ups and downs. Decisions you make have actual consequences, which is nice, it reminds me of Alpha Protocol a little. Character motivations are a little unclear, though. For instance, Adam's motivation is ostensibly to investigate the murder of his girlfriend, but you only meet her for about 10 minutes in the opening and it's not exactly riveting stuff. He barely ever shows any emotional connection with another human being throughout the rest of the game, unless it's to manipulate them to do something. What do the two of them even have in common?

The various villains are often glossed over. The twist that leads to the final level comes out of nowhere and the reasoning behind it is about as deep as you'd expect from a saturday morning cartoon villain. The aforementioned final level gets very silly too - I think they were going for horror, but to give just one example, the final boss looks like something out of a Lady Gaga video.

A big theme of the game is human augmentation through technology, and the game offers perhaps too great a soap box for the anti-science, pro-natural movement. At first I chalked this up to having an American development team who would naturally be stupid and fat, but it turns out it's made by Eidos Montreal so I guess making generalisations based on race isn't as foolproof as you might expect. Again, to be fair to the game, it does raise some valid issues. For instance, at one point in a sidequest you're asked to help a prostitute who is being forced to have augmentations done ("for his pleasure") against her will and through an underground surgeon. This is a not-as-subtle-as-they-thought-it-was attempt at making a point about plastic surgery. But most of the time the issues are just kind of silly. We already have prosthetic limbs, so pretty much none of the augmentations presented in Human Revolution are really that controversial.

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Gameplay is where it all really shines. It captures the spirit of the first game and exceeds it in many ways.

Stealth gameplay is tense and exciting with enemy placement that varies from clever to astonishingly clever. Cover, a controversial addition, actually works well, largely because it's integrated into both stealth and gun fights. Cutaway finishing moves are less welcome. They look cool (unless they bug out, which happens every once in a while) but each one is a solid blow to the kneecaps of game flow. It gets painful to watch. The ability to instantly kill an enemy with a single button is also a little unbalanced, but to be fair, it's arguably more balanced than the Dragon Tooth from the first game, since you either have to wait for the cooldown or chow down on an energy bar (I'm not making that up) before you can do it again.

There also isn't much motivation to kill a target rather than just knocking them unconscious. Dead targets can't be woken up, obviously, but the noise is much more likely to alert nearby patrols, which is a high risk for a small reward. There are a few situations where it's easier to kill people than sneak past them or knock them out - mostly involving hacking security robots and hiding in total safety - but they're few and far between. It would make more sense to have the non-lethal killing moves make more noise, but that would also make life harder for pacifist runners. (Strictly speaking, shouldn't a pacifist abhor all violence, including nonlethal?) I'm guessing this is a response to tranquilisers and gas grenades from the first game being widely considered as useless, but I think Eidos may have gone too far in the opposite direction.

I liked the boss fights. Apparently they rubbed a lot of players up the wrong way, but I think I can guess why. All the bosses push the player out of their comfort zone. The first boss, for instance, forces the player to use cover, and can't be one-hit KO'd with a takedown. Which isn't to say the fight doesn't reward stealth - it does, you can sneak behind him and nab him with an explosive - but you HAVE to fight him head on at some point, and the game doesn't necessarily prepare you for that. But they're much better designed than any of the original Deus Ex boss fights, except possibly the last one. In that game, you could flat out skip most of the boss fights by just running past them or one-shotting them with an explosive - people talk about that like it was a point in the game's favour, but I don't really buy that argument, it just lets the player skip playing the game. Human Revolution only really does 2 things wrong for the boss fights - first, not offering a non-lethal option (for the sake of consistency), and secondly, failing to develop any of the boss characters in any meaningful way. Even the final villain - the only one you have an actual conversation with before they're in the throes of death - is a two-dimensional stereotype.

The game is shorter than the original Deus Ex, but the pacing is spot-on to the point where I think you could argue it was better. The side quest system is a little too BioWare to be comfortable, but it doesn't disrupt things too badly. The game also has a slightly annoying tendency to mark everything on your map to the point of hand-holding, which kind of goes against the spirit of things, but thankfully they take the training wheels off towards the final missions. The goals are still marked, but the level design is complicated enough that it doesn't feel like it's much of a guide.

---

Now for the little stuff:

Human Revolution gets the dubious distinction of being the first game to make me barf. Well, ok, it wasn't the only cause, but Human Resources and its stupid little head wobbling was definitely a contributing factor. I guess they couldn't make it third person or they'd be accused of ripping off Metal Gear, but why did they make the camera rock about so much?

It turns out that everybody smokes cigarettes in the future. Because substance dependency is edgy, I guess. To be fair, there's a lung augmentation you can pick up that filters out toxic gases, so maybe smoking in private is supposed to be less of a health risk? Whatever.

I haven't had a chance to play the DLC but I'll definitely be checking it out. Apparently Adam spends a good chunk of it shirtless, so I'm sold.

This is the first game I've completed since coming from Skyrim and I like this game's approach to first-person role-playing much better. Skyrim's approach is to funnel the player into a specific playstyle as they specialise deeper into it. Human Revolution broadens your abilities as you accumulate more Praxis points. It also made me realise why I hate the Bethesda trope of making it possible to pick up literally everything you see. It means the player has to manage their inventory themselves and search through the environment for the stuff that actually matters. It's pointless busywork not helped by Bethesda's inability to make a workable item interface.

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Dr. BUGMAN
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Re: What are you playing today?

Post by Dr. BUGMAN »

It's always been a secret shame of mine that I've never legitimatly obtained all the Chaos Emeralds in Sonic 2. 1 and 3&K I could do in my sleep, but 2's always eluded me. So I've taken 2's upoming 20th as a deadline. So after an afternoon's (or two) worth of practising I finally did it! What's more, it was by Emerald Hill Act 2! Nerves shot and ecstatic, I ran through the remainder of the game in gleeful abandon... Or so I wished. Flying over the goalpost of Aquatic Ruin Zone, Sonic got trapped midair with a stopped clock.

4$$#$5$#&$#4@$!!!!!!

Mega Collection now lies in twain. RIP.

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