This week I have been mostly playing...

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SleepingDragon

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby SleepingDragon » Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:22 am

The thing with Kingdom Hearts is "do you like anime weirdness and introducing Disney characters into that doesn't put you off", I honestly don't think it gets any more clear as you go forward and the first game is really rather lightweight in the confusion department compared to what goes on later.
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JadedDM

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby JadedDM » Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:46 am

Unfortunately, with each new Kingdom Hearts game, the story gets subsequently more complicated (which is a bad thing, really). More and more stuff gets retconned in, and even though I was a fan of the series, I have no idea what the hell is going on anymore. I can't really go into specifics without spoilers, but stuff like, "Remember Character X? Well, he wasn't Character X at all! Rather, he was just using Character X's name, and the real Character X was doing this the whole time."

It's the same thing with Final Fantasy 7. I used to know what that game was about, but then they started adding all of these retcons about Genesis or whatever and now I'm lost.

Still, the first Kingdom Hearts is fairly solid by itself. I enjoyed it for what it was. Despite the odd casting choices for the FF characters (Mandy Moore as Aerith? Lance Bass as Sephiroth???).
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The Rocketeer

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby The Rocketeer » Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:29 am

Every time Square makes actual sequels to their games, they devolve into bad fanfiction at an accelerated pace with each new addition. Easily observable with the FFVII add-ons, FFX-2, the XIII sub-series, and beyond Final Fantasy you've got Chrono Cross (patient zero) and the absolutely appalling fate of the Parasite Eve series. But Kingdom Hearts began as a paean to crossover fanfiction writ large, which puts its own sequels in a class of their own. I haven't played KHII, but the first definitely isn't a game you play for the plot.
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Trix2000
Location: California

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Trix2000 » Fri Jun 16, 2017 4:28 pm

The Rocketeer wrote:Every time Square makes actual sequels to their games, they devolve into bad fanfiction at an accelerated pace with each new addition. Easily observable with the FFVII add-ons, FFX-2, the XIII sub-series, and beyond Final Fantasy you've got Chrono Cross (patient zero) and the absolutely appalling fate of the Parasite Eve series. But Kingdom Hearts began as a paean to crossover fanfiction writ large, which puts its own sequels in a class of their own. I haven't played KHII, but the first definitely isn't a game you play for the plot.

Bravely Second was better-written than Default, in my opinion.

...Okay, yeah, Squeenix was only the publisher there, but still.



In more topic-specific news (since it's been a while for me), I've somehow managed to clear the majority of my backlog. Tried a little game called The Tenth Line, which was a fun little RPG with a decent story... but I REALLY recommend playing it on the light mode, because boy does the game have a lot of complicated item management otherwise. I also feel like the combat could use a bit more work, interesting as it might be, because it feels like it has a few too many things to consider and not enough good options to work with - particularly early on when you have limited SP to spend. The action battle systems are a neat idea, but the execution felt a little hard to work with (Dodging in particular was very difficult to time, since everything attacks almost at once so it's hard to coordinate which character should be defending... I usually just devolved to pressing all characters' defense buttons at once. I also kept forgetting super defenses existed.). Still, it has some pretty good sound and artwork and I liked the characters well enough.

Tried out Payday 2 for the first time with some friends. I like it, but I don't really see myself playing it without other people. It just feels so much more interesting to talk out these things with friends (or blow everything to hell with them). Was a little funny getting past level 50 on the very first day I played. :P

I've also picked up a Switch (they're finally sort-of in stock again!) and Breath of the Wild, and my initial impressions (only played a couple hours so far) are positive... though I feel like I haven't gotten to the meat of things yet. Remains to be seen if the game is just fun or if it keeps me hooked for a long time.
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The Rocketeer

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby The Rocketeer » Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:21 pm

Trix2000 wrote:Bravely Second was better-written than Default, in my opinion.
A low bar.

Defeating Darkeater Midir comes down to two main problems:

—It is very difficult to reduce his HP to zero.
—It is very easy for him to reduce your HP to zero.

Any serious attempt to contend with the dragon is going to have to deal with either of these problems, and probably both. Although, you can give yourself quite a bit of breathing room if you enlist the help of a man glowing with golden beneficence who ends up doing most of the work, and even lets you take the riposte, because he's just a total class act like that.

ONE BOSS WEAPON REMAINS.
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Retsam

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Retsam » Fri Jun 16, 2017 10:56 pm

I'm a fan of Kingdom Hearts, and I actually generally like their stories, despite (or maybe even because) of the wacky kudzu plot. I really don't care for the Disney crossover stuff (I was hoping KH3 would side-line Donald and Goofy, honestly), I don't have a ton of nostalgia for most Disney films and even if I did "crossfic" stuff just doesn't appeal to me, in concept. (Though, the sheer ridiculousness that Mickey Mouse is canonically a badass in the KH-verse is the one part of the crossover that I enjoy, for some reason).

The Kingdom Hearts overall mythology is pretty crazy, (and pretty obviously a case of "making it up as we go"), though I would say it generally makes sense in context and is usually fairly internally consistent, in a similar vein to FFX how works in context, despite the accuracy of Shamus's summary about "undead priests talking about summoning simulated underwater football players from dream worlds to fight endlessly reborn kaiju Satan".

And, despite the craziness of the overall plot and mythology, I think the games do a pretty good job of working as individual stories, oddly, especially the side-games. It's a lot of animesque melodrama, and that obviously doesn't appeal to everyone, but if you're into that it's not half bad.

In fairness, when I replayed it a few years ago, Kingdom Hearts 1 specifically hadn't aged particularly well, though it's not actually the story or the graphics (well, maybe a little) but it just feels a lot more juvenile (in the sense of "for young people" not "immature"), between Sora's high-pitched voice, and just a lot more somewhat groan-worthy exchanges about friendship and smiling and such. The latter doesn't go away in KH2, but it's toned down considerably.

So, yeah, it's the definition of "not for everyone", but I do feel the need to defend it a bit.

---

Lachlan the Sane wrote:Incidentally, this also really eats into Sora's characterisation. He grew up on a tiny little island where all of the buildings were just wooden platforms slung between trees, but he's been given a key-shaped sword and teleported to a steampunk town full of talking ducks, and he's fighting loads of shadow monsters -- he should be freaking the fuck out with either terror or awe.


Completely minor but Sora actually lives in a town that's on the mainland across from the island. That's not at all clear from KH1 since you never see the town itself, but there is a scene in Sora's room where he looks out and sees a storm over the island at the beginning of the night of heartless. And most of Sora's motivation in KH1 is looking for Kairi and Riku, which is why he's running all over town looking for them.
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Lachlan the Sane
Location: I come from the land down under, where women blow and men chunder

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Lachlan the Sane » Sat Jun 17, 2017 4:10 am

Retsam wrote:Completely minor but Sora actually lives in a town that's on the mainland across from the island. That's not at all clear from KH1 since you never see the town itself, but there is a scene in Sora's room where he looks out and sees a storm over the island at the beginning of the night of heartless. And most of Sora's motivation in KH1 is looking for Kairi and Riku, which is why he's running all over town looking for them.

Oh yeah, I forgot about that scene! I was super weirded out by it. The game had very much given me the impression that Destiny Islands were in some kind of interdimensional Lost Boys scenario, with Kairi being the most recent arrival. That scene where Sora suddenly has a house and a mother on a neighbouring island raises so many more questions than it answers. They could have at least had the decency to put silhouettes of the neighbouring island into the skybox.

Oh, and also, if your main character is going to live on an island with side characters named Wakka and Tidus, DON'T NAME ONE OF THE OTHER CHARACTERS "RIKU".
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The Rocketeer

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby The Rocketeer » Sat Jun 17, 2017 5:38 am

Does Sora ever even mention his home or family again? It wasn't all that long ago I played the game on the PS3, and while I don't remember it happening, I also don't remember much at all, so I can't say it didn't.
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Retsam

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Retsam » Sat Jun 17, 2017 7:47 am

Home, yes, family, not so much. Sora frequently talks about "finding his friends so they can go home", and at the end of KH2 he does find his friends and they do go home. Family is as far as I remember, almost entirely unmentioned. They exist, not only is there the "dinner's ready" scene, but before they leave the island Riku says "we may never see our parents again", but otherwise they're absent. I guess it's sort of implied by the "going home" bit, but yeah, it doesn't seem to be a focus for Sora or Riku.

I've been referencing various bits of the "movie versions" on Youtube, and I never realized the disparity between the two games, in terms of sheer length of cutscenes: Kingdom Hearts has something like 3.5 hours of cutscenes, while Kingdom Hearts 2 has more like 10 hours. (There's vast disparity in length between the various videos, depending on what they consider "cutscenes") Just the prologue of KH2 has a good 40% of the total cutscene length of the original game.
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Humanoid

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Humanoid » Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:05 am

Picture the typical Hollywood action-thriller, where the hero receives a message informing him that his girlfriend has been kidnapped and is supposedly being held at such-and-such location, and that he must show up if he ever wants to see her again. He knows that it may well be a trap, but that he must go anyway for the sake of love and all that.

On his way to rescue her, he receives a call from the very same girlfriend and they have a pleasant conversation, neither side indicating anything is amiss. She says she's in town, and apologises for the argument they had the other day. They wish each other a good day before hanging up.

The hero then arrives at the agreed location and is met by the villain. The hero demands the release of his girlfriend. The villain reveals that the girlfriend is in fact not here, that there was no actual kidnapping, and that this was a trap. The hero expresses surprise at this turn of events.
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SpammyV
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Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby SpammyV » Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:32 am

Man, I really wanted to be badass and go "Nah, still got it, the introductory wyvern in Monster Hunter Generations can't beat me" but then I went and got KO'd and burned a defeat on the probably easiest hunt in the game, which is really just a roadblock to tell players that they need to be playing Monster Hunter and not any other game.

In my defense though the starting armor has really lousy defense and the Great Maccao has tricks. You can't get overeager and swing as it's coming at you because it runs up and then makes a strafing hop to get to your side. And if it is just standing near you, dodge immediately without waiting for it to start an attack, because it can swipe faster than your dodge roll gets you away. Also if it gets enraged and you're near it, it'll skip turning to face you and just start whirling around and slamming its tail down to clear out everything around it. Also it's got this dash-dash attack which looks like it's going to just go past you and then it stops and turns. It's challenging and there's a lot to learn even with the introductory monster, but they do it all without bad controls, unhelpful camera angles, too-small arenas, or any number of cheap fake difficulty tricks.

Monster Hunter is a good hard game series is what I'm getting at.
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Lachlan the Sane
Location: I come from the land down under, where women blow and men chunder

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Lachlan the Sane » Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:47 am

Humanoid wrote:Picture the typical Hollywood action-thriller, where the hero receives a message informing him that his girlfriend has been kidnapped and is supposedly being held at such-and-such location, and that he must show up if he ever wants to see her again. He knows that it may well be a trap, but that he must go anyway for the sake of love and all that.

On his way to rescue her, he receives a call from the very same girlfriend and they have a pleasant conversation, neither side indicating anything is amiss. She says she's in town, and apologises for the argument they had the other day. They wish each other a good day before hanging up.

The hero then arrives at the agreed location and is met by the villain. The hero demands the release of his girlfriend. The villain reveals that the girlfriend is in fact not here, that there was no actual kidnapping, and that this was a trap. The hero expresses surprise at this turn of events.

Wait, is this a warning as to what I should expect from Kingdom Hearts, or...?
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Humanoid

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Humanoid » Mon Jun 19, 2017 5:16 am

Nah, it's just a chronicle of my ongoing struggles with FE Echoes. It's turning into what Mass Effect is for Shamus, even though I'm trying to limit myself as not turn this thread into a series of whinges.

As for Kingdom Hearts, all I know about it is that I originally assumed it was a hoax, just like Harold and Kumar Go To Guantanamo Bay and Arnott's Bodyline biscuits.
Steve C

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Steve C » Mon Jun 19, 2017 8:39 pm

I tried Salt and Sanctuary, the 2d Dark Souls game. I didn't like it. I died once (from falling) when I didn't know I was taking damage from falling. Fine. Then I got to the first boss and I died repeatedly. You lose 10% of your gold when you die. I went from 900+ish to 14 before I finally killed the boss. I'm sure there's a way to calculate exactly how many times I died using e but I can't be bothered. It was a lot.

Dying repeatedly was not why I didn't like it. (That certainly didn't make me like it though.) I didn't like because it was full of bad game design and pet peeves. The game didn't provide enough feedback to me as a player. I couldn't figure out why certain things would happen and were not reproducible. For example the boss should signal in some small way that he's going into a different phase. Why is the boss' attack being interrupted by me this time? And not this other time? Why can I block and move past him this time, but not this other time? That sort of stuff is needlessly frustrating. A slight animation change (or a dozen other possible solutions) solves this problem.

The regular enemies were minor nuisances and not engaging. If the bosses are going to be hard, then the other enemies should be teaching aids for player skills and strategy. Or they should ramp up in difficulty. The difference between regular enemies and the boss was just too large. It was like they were from different games.

Another major reason why I quit was the leveling tree. The details of why is going into the pet peeve thread.
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The Rocketeer

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby The Rocketeer » Wed Jun 21, 2017 4:40 am

Ran same typical boss trajectory against the coda of the Dark Souls series, Slave Knight Gael: a few rough losses, one close hard-fought attempt, and then an easy victory.

Those last two coincided with a change of strategy, switching from the Farron Greatsword to the Hollowslayer Greatsword, provoked by reading that Gael actually becomes a hollow after the first of this three phases. That way, I could deal similar or perhaps even greater damage over time with a more accessible weapon in exchange for a somewhat longer first phase. I think I'll always prefer larger, high-damage weapons for most purposes, since the utility of defeating an enemy in 1 or 2 hits instead of 2 or 3 can hardly be overstated. But increasingly, I'm seeing the benefits of going lighter for any enemies that can't be brought down quickly by pure offense, including bosses; the quicker hits let you take more frequent safe advantage of enemy patterns, use less stamina per swing making defense through rolling or blocking more sustainable, and the lightness of the weapons frees up encumbrance for other purposes. In particular, I was able to switch my greatshield from Yhorm's to Havel's, boosting my protection from Gael's dark-based chip damage and conserving stamina for longer with its higher stability.

But more than the canny change in equipment, it just came down to the fact I had Gael's number and managed an excellent fight on the fundamentals. After getting used to the change in dodge and block windows forced by Gael using his cape to attack in tandem with his sword (which is awesome, by the way) and staying wary of his tendency, like his stylistic forebear Artorias, to tack on an extra big hit to a combo you thought was finished, Gael just couldn't get around my shield unless I was already somewhere else, and I didn't let opportunities to open him up pass by. No tricks, no exploits: just a good, clean fight where I managed to outmatch an opponent on the merits, just like the Nameless King and exactly unlike Darkeater Midir.

And with Gael's dark-soaked soul transposed into his signature greatsword... it's over. I've done everything I wanted to do, and have everything I wanted to have. Alba's/Albus' ordeals from the Nexus to the endless ash-plains is well and truly concluded. Maybe in the far, far neo-space future when the planet's La Grange points are clouded with cylindrical colonies, we all wear ecru bodysocks, refer to each other only as "fellowbeing," and I have a PS4, it will be Nero's chance to rise from also-ran alt-character status to conquer Bloodborne's Yarnham. But until that day comes, Spammy and Daemian can lock arms and Cossack dance in celebration, because there will be one fewer person around here discussing Dark Souls for the foreseeable future.

Image

Don't get yourself killed! Neither of us wants to see you go Hollow.
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Daemian Lucifer

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Daemian Lucifer » Wed Jun 21, 2017 5:20 am

By the way,since y'all are playing dark souls,maybe you should go and check the NewbHawke play it herself.Maybe even toss her a helpful hint or two.

The Rocketeer wrote:Image not being displayed


Wow,you actually managed to link an image that is too large for the forums to display.I knew your words could have that effect,but images as well?....I fear what you are going to do next.
Ninety-Three

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Ninety-Three » Wed Jun 21, 2017 11:41 pm

I keep hearing people gush about Nier Automata's story. I couldn't stand the gameplay and Steam Returned the thing, but is the story at all suited to watching an LP of it, or will I end up sitting through hours of combat for a couple minutes of cutscenes?
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SleepingDragon

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby SleepingDragon » Thu Jun 22, 2017 12:26 am

Fairly predictably I'm still in Dark Souls 2, this is probably going to take up most of my gaming time for the next few weeks. Also, because I apparently hate myself, I've decided to abandon my character who's about halfway through the game and start another trying for a caster, so I'm basically replaying a big chunk of the game. So far I'd say the limited respawn in 2 is much more supportive of playing a pure caster but I'll probably end up with some kind of caster/dex hybrid anyway.

I did manage to squeeze in a couple hours of Ashes of Singularity, since there's a Steam sale right around the corner I've been trying to get a feel for it and decide if I'd be interested in the DLCs. It seems pretty fun though it is absolute murder for my PC.
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Supahewok

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Supahewok » Thu Jun 22, 2017 1:05 am

Just finished my first run through of Invisible Inc.

For a game designed to be replayed near endlessly, it does not have an ending actually worth repeating. Knowing that I'm always working towards an AI singularity isn't... a great incentive for repeats.
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The Rocketeer

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby The Rocketeer » Thu Jun 22, 2017 1:38 am

Ninety-Three wrote:I keep hearing people gush about Nier Automata's story. I couldn't stand the gameplay and Steam Returned the thing, but is the story at all suited to watching an LP of it, or will I end up sitting through hours of combat for a couple minutes of cutscenes?
I'm still waiting for TheDarkId's LP of the game to finish and make its way to the archive, but that may be a little while yet.
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SpammyV
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Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby SpammyV » Thu Jun 22, 2017 1:47 am

But if no one is talking about Dark Souls how do I test my willpower? What game can I make veiled comments about? It's going to be a lonelier thread now.

Anyway, Monster Hunter Generations is still an incredible game. Not only can you hire cats to assist you in hunts (They're called Palicoes. Like calico) but you can ever play as your cat friends and there are even cat friend specific missions. The gameplay innovations of letting you play an adorable little cat person with a sword are unmatched.

And then there's the Insect Glaive class of weapons, which not only come with a blade on a stick, they also come with a FRIEND BEETLE who can be told to go attack targets and extract whatever essence a FRIEND BEETLE can extract from a monster. The Insect Glaive also allows you to polevault on the pointy stick whenever you want and I'm assuming that means if your timing and aim is right you can basically jump on a monster's back whenever you want. The Great Sword will always have a place in my heart for its beautiful, compelling simplicity of form and function, but there are compelling arguments for other weapon classes in Monster Hunter Generations.
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Andrew

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Andrew » Thu Jun 22, 2017 3:09 am

Crimson Court is out for Darkest Dungeon.

I haven't got it yet or played it (obviously) but I will probably pick it up soon'ish. It's been a long time since I've played Darkest Dungeon and I think I've missed at least 3 major patches so hopefully the game has gotten a little better than it was before.
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Humanoid

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby Humanoid » Thu Jun 22, 2017 3:26 am

It's like Darkest Dungeon but with even more restrictions, hoo boy. And since they couldn't be bothered doing proper patch notes, the best reference is just the user-compiled changes on reddit.
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The Rocketeer

Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby The Rocketeer » Thu Jun 22, 2017 3:36 am

SleepingDragon wrote:...I'll probably end up with some kind of caster/dex hybrid anyway.
That's a perfectly okay choice, I can tell you. My one big INT build in DSII relied on an enchanted Uchigatana for all his non-casting needs. The beauty of the enchanted infusion in DSII is that it adds physical damage that scales with INT; it isn't split damage, which gives you more bang for your buck.
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ecto_stantz_tial
Location: New England, USA
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Re: This week I have been mostly playing...

Postby ecto_stantz_tial » Thu Jun 22, 2017 1:50 pm

Been playing Psycho Waluigi which has been much better than I thought it might be. It's a fan made Super Mario Bros game starring Waluigi, that starts with him in a hot air balloon as he swipes at a bird and laughs a flock or a gaggle seek revenge on him, and he goes tumbling down, tumbling down, tumbling dooooown. Waluigi wakes up in Unconcia where he has psychic powers, can pick up enemies and blocks and throw them with his mind. Been having a lot of fun with it, as he sets out to rule the world.

King of Fighters XIV Steam Edition psyched for it to come to PC so I can play it. Haven't played too much online yet though, I tried, got my butt handed to me so badly. Experienced some lag, some matches smooth, others lag was really bad. Gotta say the final boss isn't any where near as bad as ones from previous installments. I'm really enjoying King of Dinosaurs as a character. He is a wrestler, huge muscle mass sort, used to wear a Griffon mask and go by Tizoc, and was a hero to children. Now he's had a bit of a heel turn, and wears a dinosaur/t-rex mask, and is conflicted between being a bad guy but also wanting to set a good example for children, and what he should eat as a dinosaur.

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