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Erg
Oct 31, 2010



I think itís fair to say that modern persona had an effect on Cold Steel, but trying to boil down their gameplay loops to be the same or saying that CS basically has social links does a disservice. I think the biggest lines you can ferret out are the school settings and explicit friendship levels. I didnít play the Sky trilogy but from what Iíve seen those seem like the biggest shifts to me.

I think the SL comparison misses just because while SLs are their own little self contained arcs for the most part, bonding scenes in CS are reactions to recent events. Itís a weird distinction but the fact that those bonding scenes are by design not going to refer back to earlier ones sets it apart. Devil Survivor seems like a closer thing if you want to point to an influence, since iirc it had optional scenes you could hit with party members for some bond thing during plot downtime?

And for gameplay loops itís already been said but I find the calendar setup and general expanse of choice for what to do with your time the big modern Persona ďthingĒ. It places a lot of emphasis on you being given the power to maintain whatever schedules going to get you through the game. CS has a calendar sure, but itís just for set dressing. Youíre seeing like 3 days out of the month, itís using explicit chapters, and youíre railroaded around the nation. You never have to make scheduling trade offs like Persona, CS gives you infinite time to do quests before you hit the next marker. Persona is a constant series of weighing decisions on what youíre doing for the day, and I like it because of that.

In terms of gameplay loop Iíd call earlier Ateliers closer due to that same challenge of being given a deadline for what to do and told get to it however you want.

I took forever to ramble about all of that so the convo might have moved on but it was fun to think about what a Persona game ďisĒ to me vs CS.

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Clarste
Apr 15, 2013

Just how many mistakes have you suffered on the way here?

An uncountable number, to be sure.


I agree that even if there's a little influence, calling them "basically the same" is boiling it down to a level of almost meaningless abstraction.

babypolis
Nov 4, 2009


ImpAtom posted:

Honestly my biggest problem with it was that the gameplay boiled down to "Make a team of three really strong people, using most of your extra knights to farm OP equipment. win" most of the time.

in the original game you couldnt just do that because you had multiple fronts to worry about due to how the map was laid out. did they somehow gently caress this up in the new one?

RareAcumen
Dec 28, 2012






Persona, the game that revolutionized the industry by inventing the never before concept of; hanging out with your party members

Amppelix
Aug 6, 2010



Clarste posted:

I agree that even if there's a little influence, calling them "basically the same" is boiling it down to a level of almost meaningless abstraction.
yeah this is what i was getting at. what i enjoy about persona is the distinctive time and resource management loop, which is utterly absent in cold steel, but that's okay because it has a wholly different appeal where i'm mostly there because i'm invested in the story.

Ulio
Feb 17, 2011



I really need to play SMT because my favorite part about P5 was the fusions and creating the perfect persona with no weaknesses. Gave me that Pokemon feel.

The VN and daily life management was also very good, normally I am not a fan of that type of mundane type of stuff but there was some good bonding in those moments.

Ulio fucked around with this message at 13:29 on Jun 30, 2020

Neddy Seagoon
Oct 12, 2012

Hi, Everybody!


Ulio posted:

I really need to play SMT because my favorite part about P5 was the fusions and creating the perfect persona with no weaknesses. Gave me that Pokemon feel.

The VN and daily life management was also very good, normally I am not a fan of that type of mundane type of stuff but there was some good bonding in those moments.

Get yourself a 3DS or 2DSXL while they're still semi-easy to get ahold of. There's at least half a dozen SMT games on that.

40-Degree Day
Sep 24, 2012




Bout to try SMT III. Any tips for me? I've playing SMT IV and Persona before.

Zereth
Jul 8, 2003




40-Degree Day posted:

Bout to try SMT III. Any tips for me? I've playing SMT IV and Persona before.
You can't re-learn skills on the MC, so if you delete one to make room for a newly learned one, or pass on learning one, that skill is gone forever

Srice
Sep 11, 2011



40-Degree Day posted:

Bout to try SMT III. Any tips for me? I've playing SMT IV and Persona before.

Keep the pixie you get at the very beginning because there's an event later in the game where you can power up one of your demons and it makes her quite powerful.

NikkolasKing
Apr 3, 2010





40-Degree Day posted:

Bout to try SMT III. Any tips for me? I've playing SMT IV and Persona before.

Srice posted:

Keep the pixie you get at the very beginning because there's an event later in the game where you can power up one of your demons and it makes her quite powerful.

By keep Pixie they means keep whatever demon you fused Pixie into. You can let her evolve into High Pixie and then fuse her into a variety of demons but as long as you keep that demon that used to be Pixie you get a reward way later.

Buffs that lower accuracy are king. Just trivializes some fights.

Negotiating is a huge pain in this game, way harder than SMTIV or Persona 5. You get skills for demons to help with it and as tempting as it is o dump those to free up skill slots for combat stuff, you might want to keep at least one demon around to help with negotiating. Also the answers you give when negotiating with a demon do effect your ending choice, I think.

Play Strange Journey Redux instead if you can. I kid but it's a better game. Nocturne's strengths for me are the 3D demons that give your Pokemon a bit more personality. But beyond that, SJR and SMTIVA are way better games. If you haven't played them, I highly recommend you do.

Nocturne is still good, it just really shows its age in a lot of ways.

NikkolasKing fucked around with this message at 23:38 on Jun 30, 2020

Million Ghosts
Aug 11, 2011

spooooooky


the dungeon design in Nocturne can be downright sadistic when combined with the encounter rate, don't feel bad if you have to just follow a map or walkthrough. the combat and story are the highlights, not trudging around a lovely maze for an hour

Ulio
Feb 17, 2011



Neddy Seagoon posted:

Get yourself a 3DS or 2DSXL while they're still semi-easy to get ahold of. There's at least half a dozen SMT games on that.

Ya seems like people here recommend the 3DS games over Nocturne. They are both on my playlist.

abraham linksys
Sep 6, 2010



man that Trails in the Sky FC cliffhanger is something

definitely going to read through the LP Archive playthrough of SC. I think if I had, like, played these games when released/translated, I could imagine playing through a second one a few years after the first, but back to back seems rough. will say a close-to-100% playthrough (only missed a couple side quests) "only" took about 45 hours while holding down turbo for pretty much all the combat after chapter 1, so it's not that bad as JRPGs go, but whoof, that was a dense fuckin game

GrandpaPants
Feb 13, 2006


Free to roam the heavens in man's noble quest to investigate the weirdness of the universe!



40-Degree Day posted:

Bout to try SMT III. Any tips for me? I've playing SMT IV and Persona before.

I personally thought that Physical skills were way better than Magic skills, for purposes of MC customization and focus on items.

KingSlime
Mar 20, 2007
Wake up with the Kin-OH GOD WHAT IS THAT?!

Neddy Seagoon posted:

Get yourself a 3DS or 2DSXL while they're still semi-easy to get ahold of. There's at least half a dozen SMT games on that.

Which are your favorite ones? I'm kinda working my way through them but took a sideturn into persona q and q2

I played and loved smtiv and smtiva, am thinking of the ff tactics style one (devil survivor?) or strange redux next but yeah atlus kind of went ham on releasing smt games here huh?

Anyways, they're all massive games so I figure I should play them from best to worst because I'm bound to burn out before I finish the list

NikkolasKing
Apr 3, 2010





KingSlime posted:

Which are your favorite ones? I'm kinda working my way through them but took a sideturn into persona q and q2

I played and loved smtiv and smtiva, am thinking of the ff tactics style one (devil survivor?) or strange redux next but yeah atlus kind of went ham on releasing smt games here huh?

Anyways, they're all massive games so I figure I should play them from best to worst because I'm bound to burn out before I finish the list

If I might offer my humble opinion:

Strange Journey Redux and the Devil Survivor duology can't really be compared. SJR is a SMT dungeon crawler, the DeSu games just don't even have dungeons. You will spend most of your game in SJR exploring levels and very little time talking to people while dialogue is the heart and soul of the DeSu games.

I love them both but they're very different. I couldn't begin to say which I liked better since they aim for different things.

Also since you played SMTIV and SMTIVA, Devil Survivor 1 can roughly be likened to SMTIV and Devil Survivor 2 to Apocalypse insofar as the first game has a much darker tone and the second game is more light-hearted and built around friendship. The Persona influence is strong on Apocalypse and Devil Survivor 2. I prefer both games for that reason but I know very well it's not to everyone's taste. Devil Survivor 1 has a lot of big time defenders for its much more apocalyptic tone. That might matter to you as well.

Million Ghosts
Aug 11, 2011

spooooooky


i'll definitely throw in for Strange Journey Redux being great, but i feel like the only person on the planet who absolutely hated the Devil Survivor gameplay. the combo of tactical SRPG maps + normal SMT battle makes everything take ages for no real reason. definitely try it if you're interested, i have a horrible attention span and most people seem to like it well enough

kirbysuperstar
Nov 11, 2012





Million Ghosts posted:

i'll definitely throw in for Strange Journey Redux being great, but i feel like the only person on the planet who absolutely hated the Devil Survivor gameplay. the combo of tactical SRPG maps + normal SMT battle makes everything take ages for no real reason. definitely try it if you're interested, i have a horrible attention span and most people seem to like it well enough

I thought Skill Crack was neat but otherwise I think I liked Majin Tensei more than Devil Survivor honestly.

Barudak
May 7, 2007



Million Ghosts posted:

i'll definitely throw in for Strange Journey Redux being great, but i feel like the only person on the planet who absolutely hated the Devil Survivor gameplay. the combo of tactical SRPG maps + normal SMT battle makes everything take ages for no real reason. definitely try it if you're interested, i have a horrible attention span and most people seem to like it well enough

It didn't work for me at all, either.

Infinity Gaia
Feb 27, 2011

a storm is coming...


They're not technically SMT games, but I'll stand by the Persona Q games also being pretty drat good. As it turns out the mechanics of a Persona game translate surprisingly well to an Etrian Odyssey type of dungeon crawler. The original game has a somewhat worse plot and all the characters are extremely one note, while also having worse overall gameplay mechanics due to being so experimental, but it does have some pretty drat interesting dungeon design if you're into that. PQ2 is just all around a pretty drat good game with a stellar soundtrack and rather fun combat, although the dungeon design is very simplistic. I honestly don't think you can go wrong with any SMT or Persona game on the 3DS, except maaaaybe Soul Hackers which is... A unique case.

Nate RFB
Jan 17, 2005



Clapping Larry

abraham linksys posted:

man that Trails in the Sky FC cliffhanger is something

definitely going to read through the LP Archive playthrough of SC. I think if I had, like, played these games when released/translated, I could imagine playing through a second one a few years after the first, but back to back seems rough. will say a close-to-100% playthrough (only missed a couple side quests) "only" took about 45 hours while holding down turbo for pretty much all the combat after chapter 1, so it's not that bad as JRPGs go, but whoof, that was a dense fuckin game
There's definitely some irony to this when, at the time of Sky FC's initial release, it was thought that it wouldn't matter how many years one waited because Sky SC was never going to come out in English in the first place.

The current situation is better than that alternative, at least.

Neddy Seagoon
Oct 12, 2012

Hi, Everybody!


KingSlime posted:

Which are your favorite ones? I'm kinda working my way through them but took a sideturn into persona q and q2

I played and loved smtiv and smtiva, am thinking of the ff tactics style one (devil survivor?) or strange redux next but yeah atlus kind of went ham on releasing smt games here huh?

Anyways, they're all massive games so I figure I should play them from best to worst because I'm bound to burn out before I finish the list

I actually have all the 3DS SMT games save for Strange Journey Redux and the PQ ones. I haven't played through SMTIV (got hung up at the Minotaur, need to go back and give it another shot), but I do love the Devil Survivor games.

multijoe
Oct 15, 2007

Good grief, you really are the lowest tier scum in history


Fun Shoe

I'd be interested in trying out something from the Atelier series, from the Steam catalogue could anyone recommend first-time game?

The Colonel
Jun 8, 2013

I commute by bike!


atelier ayesha

really there's no bad start point outside of maybe the first two mysterious games (sophie, firis) that are a bit polarizing, everything else is good and easy enough to jump into

Booky
Feb 21, 2013

chill bug


kirbysuperstar posted:

I thought Skill Crack was neat but otherwise I think I liked Majin Tensei more than Devil Survivor honestly.

count me in for bouncing off of DeSu1 Overclocked too after like an hour or two!

majin tensei (1, haven't played 2 with the patch yet) has its flaws like obnoxiously large maps, slow enemy phases, and only 16 inventory slots total, but it's what i think of (besides srw and fe) when srpgs come up instead of DeSu's fusion.

cheetah7071
Oct 20, 2010

honk honk





College Slice

multijoe posted:

I'd be interested in trying out something from the Atelier series, from the Steam catalogue could anyone recommend first-time game?

cheetah7071 posted:

Atelier is a series of JRPGs released roughly yearly with (as of this post) 21 mainline entries and a dozen spinoffs. The best words to describe the mood of (most of) the games are "cute" and "chill". They almost exclusively have low stakes like "stop the government from eminent domain-ing my small business" or "don't get fired from my job". You (almost always) play as a young woman starting her career as an alchemist. What this means in game terms is crafting. Lots and lots of crafting. You craft your own weapons and armor, you craft bombs to throw at the enemies, you craft healing items, you craft everything. The trend in modern games is to have the crafting be a fully-realized puzzle minigame where the outcome is shaped by the exact details of the items you put in. Besides the crafting, the gameplay is fairly standard turn-based JRPG fare, often with a subfocus on exploration. Some of the older games also have a time management component, of varying levels of difficulty. The games are also known for having kickass soundtracks and heavy lesbian undertones.

Most of the games are linked to each other in trilogies (or the occasional duology or quadrilogy). Generally speaking, you don't need to play a trilogy in order--they're designed to be playable individually (with varying levels of success). The series started on the original Playstation but it wasn't until the PS2 that the games started getting localized. The PS2 games are also huge outliers; in the PS3 era the series returned to its roots and the PS3 games are much more similar to the PS1 games than they are to the PS2 games. This means that the PS3 era is the start of the "modern" Atelier series. Thus, rather than talk about the series in chronological order, I'm going to talk about the modern games first and then go back to the older games.

Arland Quadrilogy (PS3/Vita/PC/PS4/Switch for the first three; PC/PS4/Switch for Lulua)
  • Atelier Rorona: A wholesome, charming game about an apprentice alchemist saving her master's failing business from being bought out. This game is a very laid-back, relaxed experience if you just want to get to the end and make some anime friends, but a very frantic experience if you want to make all the anime friends because there's a time limit. That time limit is extremely generous to just complete the game, but extremely tight if you want to 100% it. Also, content warning, there are a few scenes that are uncomfortably horny about underage characters. Also apparently the PS3 version is terrible and you should never play it. This is one of my recommended entry points to the series.

  • Atelier Totori: This game dials back the charm compared to Rorona, but in exchange has a heartfelt story about family. This game has in my opinion the second-best writing in the series. It's a bit janky though--when Rorona got ported, it got a bunch of quality of life updates, whereas Totori is a straight port, so it's the oldest-feeling of the modern games. It also has the tightest time limit of any of the modern games, and is the only one where a careful player faces a realistic chance of failure. Consulting a guide or asking for help is recommended.

  • Atelier Meruru: This game has a sort of frantic energy to it. You play as a princess using alchemy to provide infrastructure to her kingdom. The new characters besides Meruru herself are all pretty boring but it brings back all the favorites from Rorona and Totori. This game has a similar time limit to Totori but is a bit easier so there's less risk of failure. Also Rorona is inexplicably turned into an eight year old in this game, a move which nobody liked.

  • Atelier Lulua: This game came out a decade after Meruru and is a long form apology for what they did to Rorona in it. Rorona is now in her 30s and is a mom, and you play as her daughter. The game is written as a slapstick comedy and the first half has some great cinematograpy contributing to the comedic timing (before they realized that doing that for the entire game would run them way over budget). This game does not have a time limit.

Dusk Trilogy (PS3/Vita/PC/PS4/Switch)
  • Atelier Ayesha: This game wins my award for best-written Atelier. The game is in turns cute, heartwarming, funny, and deeply moving. You play as a young woman going on an adventure to learn alchemy in order to save her sister. This game can be a bit confusing at times on how to proceed and has a time limit, so I recommend using a guide if you ever find yourself stuck on what to do next. This is one of my recommended entry points to the series

  • Atelier Escha and Logy: This is another fan-favorite for its lovable cast. You play as two alchemists starting their career in government work. This game has a time limit but failure isn't very realistic.

  • Atelier Shallie: I don't even know how to summarize the story of this one. Tbh I don't like it all that much, it felt too much like it was trying to rely on the appeal of the previous Dusk games while not having anything worthwhile of its own, or a very good understanding of what made them great in the first place.

Mysterious Trilogy (PS4/Vita/PC; L&S is on the Switch as well)
  • Atelier Sophie: A young woman begins to learn alchemy under the instruction of a talking book who is her future wife. Unfortunately for her, her village is filled with only boring people for her to be friends with. Fortunately for her, new, less boring people move in eventually

  • Atelier Firis: An open world Atelier. You can really tell that all the development effort in this game went into doing their best to make an open world game, and the rest suffers for it. I personally think they pulled it off, but everybody else on the planet thinks this is the worst Atelier by a mile.

  • Atelier Lydie and Suelle: A return to form, this game feels like it could have been in the Arland trilogy, writing-wise. It has a lovable, colorful cast of characters and probably the best gameplay in the series to-date. This is one of my recommended entry points to the series.

Secret (?) Trilogy (?) (PS4/PC/Switch)
  • Atelier Ryza: This game is a story about a young woman in a rural town coming of age and finding her place in the world. The story leans a bit more traditional JRPG, with linear story beats and a more typical save-the-world framing (though there's still plenty of Atelier-style low-stakes stuff to go along with it). The combat system is also decidedly unchill, and demands quick thinking to succeed. This is one of my recommended entry points to the series, but it's kind of short for a full-price game so maybe wait for a sale

Iris Trilogy (PS2)
  • Atelier Iris: I haven't played this game since I was a teen but it's probably boring and bad

  • Atelier Iris 2: I have replayed this game so I know it's boring and bad

  • Atelier Iris 3: This game has charming-but-boring writing, but an unusually engaging battle system.

Mana Khemia Duology (PS2)
  • Mana Khemia: I'm the only Atelier fan who doesn't like this game so it must be doing something good. Play it maybe, and then tell me why I'm wrong for not liking it

  • Mana Khemia 2: I bounced off this game.

Other stuff
  • Atelier Marie: The very first Atelier, available to play via a fan patch for the PS2 version. The entire game is time management.

  • Atelier Elie: The second Atelier, available to play also via fan patch. It seems to be Marie but better.

  • Atelier Annie: A DS game and officially considered a spinoff, though gameplaywise it seems to be basically mainline. Unfortunately, that gameplay is trash. It's a shame too because the writing is legitimately funny.

  • Nelke and the Legendary Alchemists: This is a crossover game. It is not a mainline Atelier, it is a spinoff. The genre is townbuilder, not JRPG. Don't play it unless you've played so many Ateliers that you'll recognize a good number of the crossover characters

Tales of Woe
Dec 17, 2004



multijoe posted:

I'd be interested in trying out something from the Atelier series, from the Steam catalogue could anyone recommend first-time game?

Ayesha seems like a good one to start with now that it's finally out of PS3/vita jail. dunno how good the PC port is.

Ryza if you want something that's more "current-gen"

multijoe
Oct 15, 2007

Good grief, you really are the lowest tier scum in history


Fun Shoe

Thanks for the recommendations, I've gone with Ayesha on account of not wanting to buy a £50 game during the sale lol

cheetah7071
Oct 20, 2010

honk honk





College Slice

My one piece of advice for Ayesha is that if you ever find yourself spinning your wheels without a clear idea of what to do next, just check gamefaqs. The time limit is fairly lenient so you don't need to reference a guide constantly but you do have to be making actual forward progress.

Also, if a map area has any exits, they'll only open up after you do the mini-quests to kill all the enemies and gather from all the gathering points. Those mini-quests aren't just for the points, they're actually important.

Dr. Eldarion
Mar 21, 2001

Deal Dispatcher



Erg posted:

Remembered recently how good I thought the Titles system and Lillium Orb were in Tales games and now I'm trying to figure out how to recapture that high of "skill tree-ish system that makes my lizard brain light up"

I know I'm like a month late to this, but if you want an expansive skill tree oh boy do I have one for you: Path of Exile.

Zereth
Jul 8, 2003




Good luck not loving it up if you're not following a canned build, though.

punk rebel ecks
Dec 11, 2010

I will NEVER become THE PIRATE KING!!! I am just a lazy, hypocritical idiot.


Man, I'm playing Final Fantasy VI and am surprised by how well it holds up. The pacing, writing, and the combat system are very well done even by today's standards. My only complaint is that due to so many characters and that the game isn't super long, it's more difficult to develop a bond with most of them.

baram.
Oct 23, 2007

smooth.



Grimey Drawer

were the xillias the only ones with a skill tree? i never played them but maybe i should. at least the first one.

Sakurazuka
Jan 24, 2004

NANI?



Hearts R had a similar system as well

Both Xillias are good but do not play them one after another

DrManiac
Feb 29, 2012


Metal Max 3 has some loving dire side quests. I don't mind getting X items to complete a quest but at least be reasonable about the amounts.

Get 20 of a semi-rare drop that only 1 enemy of 7 can give isn't fun.
Getting 30 of a item that only spawns 3 of on the map so you have to constantly go in and out the dungeon isn't fun.
Having to buy a 20 pieces of armor to make a rope isn't fun.
Transporting 20 tons of water in 4 ton increments because that's all your tank can hold isn't fun.

Oh and those numbers? The game never says how many of a thing you need so if I wasn't using a guide it would be even worse. I have no idea why they made the numbers so obnoxious.


Because of how the game is structured you don't know if a quest leads to another one or if you might need the reputation boost so you can't even just say gently caress it and not do them.

Endorph
Jul 22, 2009

I may not be as cute as the other girls, but I'm the best at arm wrestling!


baram. posted:

were the xillias the only ones with a skill tree? i never played them but maybe i should. at least the first one.

x1 had a skill tree. x2 had a system where each character had different element bars you could fill up by feeding element juice you got from monsters into them to unlock skills, iirc? hearts r also had a skill tree. graces had a system where you unlocked titles for doing certain things and by fighting with the titles equipped you got certain buffs, and as you foguht with them equipped you unlocked new moves and permanent upgrades/stat boosts and stuff. graces is my fave progression system in any jrpg because you can get titles for all sorts of wacky things like cooking a bunch or talking to a lot of random villagers so everything in the game loops back into combat upgrades.

RottenK
Feb 17, 2011

Sexy bad choices



I'm very late to the party but I finally started playing Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth and im having a pretty fun time with it. Starting on Hard was probably a bad idea because either i hosed something up or the very beginning of the game isn't tuned for it very well because i died in what seems to be the tutorial sequence and then had to sit through a bunch of dialogue again, but apart from that it's going well.

The whole evolving/de-evolving system is a bit overwhelming though, i think i get the idea and what i'm supposed to do but I don't know if I have the will or patience to carefully lead a digimon up and down various evolution paths to pick up the best skills for whatever final form I want to give it

Neddy Seagoon
Oct 12, 2012

Hi, Everybody!


RottenK posted:

I'm very late to the party but I finally started playing Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth and im having a pretty fun time with it. Starting on Hard was probably a bad idea because either i hosed something up or the very beginning of the game isn't tuned for it very well because i died in what seems to be the tutorial sequence and then had to sit through a bunch of dialogue again, but apart from that it's going well.

The whole evolving/de-evolving system is a bit overwhelming though, i think i get the idea and what i'm supposed to do but I don't know if I have the will or patience to carefully lead a digimon up and down various evolution paths to pick up the best skills for whatever final form I want to give it

TacticianUSB's are your friend, and they stack. Put them on a Sukamon and get more XP than you'll ever need.

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Shinjobi
Jul 10, 2008




Gravy Boat 2k

Endorph posted:

x1 had a skill tree. x2 had a system where each character had different element bars you could fill up by feeding element juice you got from monsters into them to unlock skills, iirc? hearts r also had a skill tree. graces had a system where you unlocked titles for doing certain things and by fighting with the titles equipped you got certain buffs, and as you foguht with them equipped you unlocked new moves and permanent upgrades/stat boosts and stuff. graces is my fave progression system in any jrpg because you can get titles for all sorts of wacky things like cooking a bunch or talking to a lot of random villagers so everything in the game loops back into combat upgrades.

I cant believe I miss Graces as much as I do. I didn't feel like it blew me away when I played it, but drat it has stuck with me with how fun it was.

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