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Xarbala
Feb 13, 2011






dead gay comedy forums posted:

Homeworld
Relic Entertainment
1999

This is a drat fine post.

E: heck of a snipe

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Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?



Great write-up on Homeworld, dead gay comedy forums, man I loved that game.

Seems like about the right time to update the list for the OP:

A Fisherman's Tale by The 7th Guest
A Hat in Time by Zybourne Clock
Age of Empires 2 by TheMostFrench
Alpha Protocol by theshim
Alien Isolation by VinylonUnderground
Anachranox by Whybird
Analogue: A Hate Story by Reveilled
Another World by VinylonUnderground
Armored Core 2 by Shine
Atelier by cheetah7071
Batman: Arkham Asylum by thrilla in vanilla
Black Magic by fridge corn
Bloodborne by FrozenGoldfishGod
Burnout 3: Takedown by thrilla in vanilla
Call of Juarez: Gunslinger by Zenithe
Cannon Fodder by GazChap
Civilization by Lampsacus
Civilization 4 by Erwin the German
Commander Blood by Lid
Crash Bandicoot 4 by Violen
Crusader Kings II by VinylonUnderground
Cyberpunk 2077 by Erwin the German
Dark Cloud 2 by dracky
Dark Cloud 2 (Spheda) by Senerio
Dark Messiah of Might and Magic by Jeza
Dark Souls by Shine
Dark Souls by FrozenGoldfishGod
Dark Souls by VideoGames
Dark Souls 2 by FrozenGoldfishGod
Dark Souls 2 by VideoGames
Dark Souls 3 by FrozenGoldfishGod
Dark Souls 3 by VideoGames
Dark Queen of Krynn by Glare Seethe
DEFCON by Sardonik
Deus Ex by Erwin the German
Diablo 2 by TheMostFrench
Disco Elysium by Erwin the German
Doom (1993) by CyberPingu
Duke Nukem 3D by Heavy Metal
Earth Defense Force by Shine
Elder Scrolls 2: Daggerfall by Thothanon
Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind by Erwin the German
Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind by VinylonUnderground
Enderal (Skyrim Total Conversion) by Ice Phisherman
Fallout 2 by VinylonUnderground
Fallout: New Vegas by Erwin the German
Faster Than Light by VinylonUnderground
Final Fantasy 4 by Spuzzz
Final Fantasy 7 by Erwin the German
Final Fantasy 14 (short) by Erwin the German
Final Fantasy 14 (expanded) by Erwin the German
Freespace/Freespace 2 by theshim
Frontier: Elite 2 by GazChap
Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy by Reveilled
Hades by Jossar
Hades by Sab Sabbington
Half Life (mods) by TheMostFrench
Half Life 2 by Erwin the German
Hitman: Contracts by Erwin the German
Homeworld by dead gay comedy forums
Homeworld: Cataclysm by TheMostFrench
Horizon Zero Dawn by sean10mm
Hunt: Showdown by Erwin The German
IL-2: 1946 by Shine
Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy by Erwin the German
Kentucky Route Zero by Mode 7
Killer 7 by PNGYAKUZA
King of Dragon Pass by Fly Ricky
King of Fighters 99: Evolution by Heavy Metal
Kirby Mass Attack by Regy Rusty
Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords by Erwin the German
Knytt Underground by Glare Seethe
Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver by Rarity
Legend of Grimrock 2 by Polo-Rican
Legend of Zelda by Mr. Pickles
Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask by Erwin the German
Legend of Zela: Majora's Mask by star eater
Life is Strange by exquisite tea
Life is Strange by parkingtigers
LISA the Painful RPG by Mizuti
Mafia by Erwin the German
Marathon by haveblue
Marathon by DAD LOST MY IPOD
Marathon 2: Durandal / Marathon: Rubicon by Glare Seethe
Marvel Heroes by Shine
Master of Orion 2 by VinylonUnderground
Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne by Erwin the German
Mayhem Triple by Sorting Algorithms
Mega Man 2 by Shine
Mega Man X by Shine
Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes by Heavy Metal
Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater by Erwin the German
Metroid Prime by Erwin the German
Mirror's Edge Catalyst by BeanpolePeckerwood
Monster Hunter World by Shine
Myth 2: Soulblighter by Pain of Mind
Myth: The Fallen Lords by dead gay comedy forums
Neverwinter Nights Enhanced Edition by Erwin the German
Nier: Automata by Erwin the German
Night in the Woods by VinylonUnderground
Night Stalker by Shine
Ogre Battle: The March of the Black Queen by The Zombie Guy
Ori and the Will-of-the-Wisps by Canine Blues Arooo
Ori and the Will-of-the-Wisps by Lechtansi
Out of the Park Baseball by F_Shit_Fitzgerald
Out of the Park Baseball by Arms_Akimbo
Pathologic 2 by Mizuti
Perfect Dark by star eater
Perimeter by Sardonik
Phantasy Star IV by VinylonUnderground
Pirates Gold! by VinylonUnderground
Prey by VinylonUnderground
Prey by Erwin the German
Psychonauts by Jeza
Psychonauts by Sab Sabbington
Punch Out!! by Shine
Rain World by f#a#
Ratchet & Clank - Up Your Arsenal by Shine
Remember Me by Parkingtigers
Resident Evil by BiggerBoat
Resident Evil REmake by Electromax
Resident Evil 4 by Erwin the German
River City Ransom by Zerilan
Robin Hood - Prince of Thieves by Shine
Rocket League by Shine
Rocky's Boots by fridge corn
Romancing SaGa by 5-Headed Snake God
Runescape by Jossar
Sacrifice by Jeza
Sakuna: Of Rice and Ruin by Xarbala
Severance: Blade of Darkness by Mr. Pickles
Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri by dead gay comedy forums
Sin & Punishment: Star Successor by punk rebel ecks
Snoopy Silly Sports Spectacular by Shine
Sonic the Hedgehog 3 by VinylonUnderground
Space Rangers 2 by Shine
SSX 3 by morallyobjected
S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl by Erwin the German
Star Wars: Racer by Mr. Pickles
Star Wars: Squadrons by morallyobjected
Stickybear Basket Bounce by fridge corn
Suikoden II by Ms Adequate
Super Hexagon by Glare Seethe
Super Huey by Shine
Super Mario 3 by Shine
Super Mario 64 by Heavy Metal
Super Metroid by Shine
Super Punch-Out by Shine
Sweet Home by Zerilan
Tales of Mal'Eyal by Konstantin
Terranigma by theshim
Terraria by Helicity
The Hunter: Call of the Wild by Zaphod42
The Longest Journey by Erwin the German
The Stanley Parable by dead gay comedy forums
The Void Rains Upon Her Heart by Sorting Algorithms
The World Ends With You by theshim
TIE Fighter by Shine
Thief: The Dark Project by Mr. Pickles
The Dark Mod by Erwin the German
Tomb Raider Anniversary by Heavy Metal
Tomb Raider Anniversary by VideoGames
Total Annihilation by TheMostFrench
Towerfall by Polo-Rican
Track & Field 2 by Shine
Tropico by VinylonUnderground
Undertale by Erwin the German
Unreal Tournament by Shine
Unreal Tournament 2004 by dead gay comedy forums
Vagrant Story by Party Boat
Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines by Erwin the German
Wario Ware: Mega Microgame$ by GoutPatrol
Winter Games by fridge corn
XCOM: Enemy Unknown by Shine

Lechtansi
Mar 23, 2004

Item Get


Jerusalem posted:

Great write-up on Homeworld, dead gay comedy forums, man I loved that game.

Seems like about the right time to update the list for the OP:

[snip]

Bravo goons, you have good taste.

Rabbit Hill
Mar 11, 2009

God knows what lives in me in place of me.

Grimey Drawer

WTF, no one has written up Red Dead Redemption 2??? OK, I'm taking that as a personal challenge and will post a review before the end of the week.

Capital Letdown
Oct 5, 2006
i still cant fix red text avs someone tell me the bbcode for that im an admin and dont know this lmao

I friggin love Streets of Rage 4. I don't have much of a plan for what I'm going to write about so I just wanted to lay out my experience.


I don't particularly have a strong connection to beat em ups (or even fighting games, really). My brother and I owned a couple random ones for SNES (Final Fight, Rival Turf), but I don't think I ever beat any. A few years ago I tried to play through Final Fight Guy and while I enjoyed the challenge, I never finished it(Final Fight Guy / Final Fight for SNES, I later learned, are pretty simple and due to system limitations, tend to have far fewer enemies on screen / stuff going on than it's arcade counter parts).

Earlier in the winter, I gave Streets of Rage 4 a shot. Pandemic boredom, etc. My partner, who has barely played any vids in her life, played along with me and it was pretty fun! We would load up story mode and beat up some dudes co-op. Story mode runs through about 12 levels - you start each level at 2 lives and can earn extra lives every 7000~ points or so. If you game over, there's all sorts of handicaps you can add - extra lives, bonus damage, etc. - to get through the game. Eventually we cheesed our way through it and that was it.

We both kinda lost interest, and after beating Story mode I tested out the Arcade mode - you run through the 12 story mode levels, but there's no handicaps or continues. Game over is game over. Instead of starting at 2 lives every level and getting a new one every 7000 points. You start at 2 for the entire run and only earn new lives every 30,000 points! I basically checked it out and went 'lmao gently caress that' and moved on.

A few weeks, maybe months later, toward the summer, I had an itch to play something but couldn't decide what. I decided to load it up and just try out arcade mode, who cares. Suddenly, everything clicked. I could see and feel all the differences in how other characters move, started to become more confident with specials and longer combos, and started just working through it. Since then I have completed Hard and Hardest difficulties on Arcade, and now am slowly working out Mania difficulty.



The gameplay is pretty simple but of course gets tougher and tighter the higher difficulty the game becomes. You have a standard melee combo, a special attack which can drain life that you earn back, a defensive special, a big power star move, and blitz moves that (for most characters) let you travel a good distance horizontally. You get higher score bonuses based on combos and how much damage you can do before getting hit, which as you practice becomes super relevant for arcade mode. I'm getting overwhelmed by enemies and losing a life ... but if I can get a big combo going in the earlier levels, I can earn enough points to get an extra life or two. But then all of a sudden, when you're pulling off the big combos to farm up points, you're doing well enough to not necessarily need extra lives! So simultaneously as you're getting a hold of the onslaught and earning more lives, you're also kicking rear end and getting through the levels and needing to use less lives!

The DLC has since added Survival Mode which I didn't love at first but now I think it rocks. You fight increasing difficult floors of enemies with a boss every 4 floors. Every floor you compete you get to pick a perk (toxic/electric/flame effects for your different attacks, extra jumps, movement speed, some interesting trade-off positive/negative perks, etc. They turned the thing into basically a roguelike - beat up some guys, get some power ups, see how high you can get, rinse and repeat.



There are a ton of characters - five 'standard' characters, plus 3 (bosses from the story mode) DLC characters. As well as something like 12-16 extra guys which is all the characters from Streets of Rage 1-3. So you can have Streets of Rage 2 pixel Axel fighting along side SoR4 HD drawing Axel. They all feel super different - I got through Hardest on arcade mode with Cherry and after I was done I literally couldn't play as anyone else, I just go so attached to her movement and attacks. Eventually with Survival I'm getting more used to using everyone. I kinda wish there was a random character option.

I don't know exactly to explain my feelings, but this is the most pure 'video game' game I've played in years. You walk up and down, left and right, and you punch the hell out of guys. Simple to learn, hard to master. As you get better you start to learn combos and eventually you learn terms and things like 'air cancelling' and 'cross ups' which were always kinda mystifying fighting game terms to me. Survival mode or Arcade mode runs can take anywhere from 10-90 minutes depending how good you are and how long you can go, but the game is easily pause-able and it's no problem to pick it up and put it down based on what you're doing. Each attempt is very low stakes.

I strongly encourage people to check out Streets of Rage 4. Settle in and just beat the heck out of some dudes, and then try to get better at it.

exquisite tea
Apr 21, 2007

Carly shook her glass, willing the ice to melt. "You still haven't told me what the mission is."

She leaned forward. "We are going to assassinate the bad men of Hollywood."




I have nothing to add other than Streets of Rage 4 is just so good, my favorite beatemup of all time and the best possible version of itself. That feeling of progression from not being able to punch your way out of the first screen on the harder difficulties to effortlessly S-Ranking Mania+ is sublime. Each character feels unique and extraordinarily complex for a game with two attack buttons. And the music! I thought the main game slapped hard enough but then they get Tee Lopes to completely up the ante in Survival Mode. I easily put over 100 hours into the main mode and I'm coming up on 100 more on the Mr. X Nightmare DLC. Everybody play Streets of Rage 4!

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?



Rabbit Hill posted:

WTF, no one has written up Red Dead Redemption 2??? OK, I'm taking that as a personal challenge and will post a review before the end of the week.

Well? :colbert:

Elentor
Dec 14, 2004


I'm having post-surgery complications and in my fever I thought of this thread and writing about World of Warcraft and League of Legends.

brain dammej
Oct 6, 2013



wow, lol

dead gay comedy forums
Oct 21, 2011




Capital Letdown posted:

I strongly encourage people to check out Streets of Rage 4. Settle in and just beat the heck out of some dudes, and then try to get better at it.

drat I gotta revisit this one

theshim
May 1, 2012

You think you can defeat ME, Ephraimcopter?!?

You couldn't even beat Assassincopter!!!


Elentor posted:

I'm having post-surgery complications and in my fever I thought of this thread and writing about World of Warcraft and League of Legends.
would read

also feel better!

Clockwerk
Apr 6, 2005




theshim posted:

would read

also feel better!

To contribute, Iíve thought about doing a write up for Shards of Dalaya, a fever dream mod of 2001 EverQuest made by a Finnish teenager (and goon), before he went on to make Stellaris and other stuff for Paradox. I doubt thereís much interest, and itís really hard to defend some of the design decisions from that era, but itís tempting nonetheless

Clockwerk fucked around with this message at 01:27 on Oct 20, 2021

Rabbit Hill
Mar 11, 2009

God knows what lives in me in place of me.

Grimey Drawer


I got overwhelmed by the enormity of the task I set before me. :eng99: But it's coming!

TheHoosier
Dec 30, 2004

The fuck, Graham?!



Metal Gear Solid is the greatest game ever made. I bought it on a whim after remembering some NES game I had a faint memory of enjoying once, and was absolutely blown away. To this day, I still give this game (and Baldur's Gate II) credit for pushing gaming from just a small hobby i'd likely move away from to my favorite hobby. Metal Gear Solid is a game with almost no flaws that has left a legacy that very few games from that time can match. There are some, but not many.

The music and sound design? Absolutely masterful.

The voice acting? You already know. You can hear the lines in your head. I bet you rattle them off when an opportunity presents itself.

The plot? It's loving bonkers BUT NOT BONKERS ENOUGH to be insultingly stupid. It's campy, it's serious, it's silly, it's emotional, and it's memorable.

The gameplay? It manages to be tight, engaging, and innovative despite being limited by the hardware. You like stealth in your 3rd-person action games? Thanks, MGS!

The characters? Legendary. Almost to a detriment. The developers would dip into this well over and over again, knowing fully their first at-bat was a grand slam.

The legacy? GOAT, or at the very least in the Top 5 of the Top 10. This game turned Kojima into a figure frequently mentioned in the same breath as Miyamoto, Sakaguchi, Miyazaki, etc. The man became a beloved auteur from this game alone. The rest of his work has been a long victory lap. Developers to this day still borrow tropes and concepts from this game and its successors. Also, the drat Psycho Mantis fight.


I unfortunately don't have the intricate knowledge necessary to give this game a true Watch Out For Fireballs-esque effort post, but believe me it's worth it. I honestly can't think of a flaw in this game. Maybe the controls? But that's only because the medium has evolved and improved over time. MGS, to me, was extremely easy to play at the time. Hell, I could play it NOW with no issues. Few games have had a more profound effect on me as this game. Sure, objectively there are much better games in the same franchise, but they just didn't hit the same as this one. I love the series as a whole, especially MGS3, but this game just came along and did the right things at the right time.

TheHoosier fucked around with this message at 22:50 on Oct 20, 2021

theshim
May 1, 2012

You think you can defeat ME, Ephraimcopter?!?

You couldn't even beat Assassincopter!!!


Okay, it's time to write some Words, especially with a new league set to drop in two days. Let me tell y'all about a little game called Path of Exile.

Back in the long-forgotten mists of time, there were a few people who really, really enjoyed Diablo 2. They played it, and they played it a lot, and then they played it some more. And like quite a few people, eventually they decided they wanted more. So they set out to make their own, better Diablo 2 only-more-so in the late 2000s, and formed the studio Grinding Gear Games. Eventually Blizzard would release Diablo 3, and like many fans of Diablo 2, they played it and said "hey, this isn't more of what I wanted" and went back to their own project, and somehow produced the most utterly befuddling, impenetrable, misbegotten beautiful son of a bitch of a game I've ever played, and continue to play to this day. To sum up everything I'm going to say as succinctly as possible: Path of Exile is the best game that I would not recommend to almost anyone.

The game is a classic loot-ARPG, hewing extremely close to Diablo 2 in gameplay and progression on a surface level. Kill dudes, get drops, level up, open up the passive skill tree and immediately freak the gently caress out.

I mean look at this poo poo, what the gently caress.



This is (an outdated version of) the passive skill tree that every one of the 7 classes shares. The different classes start at their own points of the passive tree, corresponding to their archetype. Every node on the tree costs 1 passive point to allocate, and all told you can expect to get in the neighborhood of 100-120 points total. It's extremely easy to get overwhelmed by it. And, of course, this is the passive skill tree. As far as your attacks, spells, auras, summons, etc. all go? That moves over to the game's monstrously arcane skill gem and gear socket systems.

Everything your character can do besides a basic attack is granted by jamming the appropriate skill gem into the correctly colored socket on one of your pieces of gear. Want to use the Ground Slam attack, which deals heavy damage in a cone in front of you? It's a red skill gem, associated with Strength, and you'll need to have an open red socket on a piece of gear to put it in. Rather use the cold spell Freezing Pulse? You'll need a blue socket. Where this gets crazy is that sockets on gear can be linked together, up to 6 in one group on armor or two-handed weapons, and for all the various skill gems that go in first, you can then add support gems to empower and sometimes completely change the behavior. Stick a Ruthless support gem in with that Ground Slam and it'll deal massively powerful blows every third strike. Don't feel like casting Freezing Pulse yourself? Add a Spell Totem gem into the links and you'll instead be able to conjure up a stationary totem that will cast the spell for you at nearby foes. The sheer amount of customization and different ways you can make a character function is where I can begin to talk about what makes PoE such an incredible draw for the right kind of person.

No game I've ever played has come close to the utterly bugfuck insane depth in PoE. The honestly daunting number of interlocking systems, specific unique items with crazy interactions, modifiable behaviors and archetypes, things that just shouldn't work but do, and level of ability to truly make the game your own is unmatched. I could go on for hours talking about some of my favorite characters from over the years, like my Champion using the unique Facebreaker gloves that give you the ability to become an absolutely monstrous unarmed fighter, or the Necromancer that just hurled walls of skeleton warriors at the hardest fights in the game and took them to the Bone Zone, or my Guardian who ran around with himself on fire all the time incinerating enemies that I got near to. One of the most insanely powerful attackers in the game is a character that stacks the Intelligence attribute as high as they can get it and attacks using a wand...with the right gear.

And oh, god, the gear. In addition to hundreds of unique items, many of which have their own particular gamebreaking quirks and interactions and properties, PoE also features a ludicrous amount of items, with thousands of mods that can roll on them, easily overwhelming newer players, and a crafting system that is still completely opaque horseshit for me to this day. The studio called themselves Grinding Gear Games for a reason, as the vast majority of the reason to keep playing is to challenge harder and harder content and reap greater and greater rewards. Crafted gear, especially with some of the content from the more recent league releases, can reach unspeakably powerful levels and enable characters to tackle obscenely difficult content without breaking a sweat.

At the center of crafting is currency. Unlike Diablo 2, or many other ARPGs, there's no gold in PoE. There's no one unified currency that people can just spend back and forth. Instead, all currency is in the form of orbs that do something when used. From the simple Orb of Transmutation (turn a white item into a magic item, adding 1 or 2 affixes) to the impossibly rare Mirror of Kalandra (make a non-modifiable copy of a non-unique item), the currency is all in the form of useful items, things you're often more likely to consume for their normal purpose than you are to use them to trade for things. It creates a natural downward pressure on the relative price of any one currency, as the supply is constantly going up from playing the game and acquiring them as drops from enemies and from trades from vendors, but the supply also trends downward as people actually use the currency itself.

Which brings me to my next point, the constant rotation of Leagues. Approximately every three months, a new league is released in PoE, providing a new challenge to overcome and a fresh start for everyone who wants to participate. Honestly you could probably write a fascinating economics paper on the relative worth of items across the lifespan of PoE, and how prices stabilize - or don't - in every challenge league. Personally, I really appreciate the constant fresh starts, as after a few weeks or a month and change on a single character I will often grow bored, finding it hard to make significant upgrades without a tremendous amount of effort - though the Standard league exists for people who want to keep playing one character. But the leagues also offer new, fresh content on a reliable schedule, which can vary from okay to intense and demanding, and many of them end up being added into the core game. If anything, the game probably suffers from feature bloat in this arena, with so much stuff going on that it can be impossible for newer players to keep track of it all. Thankfully, in this newest league, they are also starting to retire older content, easing some of the burden of knowledge.

What's really cool about PoE is the amount of support it still receives to this day. Fresh content constantly being released, with new challenges, new interactions, and new items that can then be mixed and matched to form new, insane contraptions with existing stuff. There's a ton of work being put into PoE2, a new campaign that will completely revamp around half the stuff I just talked about that will probably not be out for another couple years. The endgame mapping system, where you can constantly tread the line between danger and reward, pushing yourself into more challenging content and terrifying bosses, just got a revamp for the upcoming league to be less of a grind to get started. The devs are constantly in contact with the community, doing Q&As, responding to reddit posts, appearing on podcasts, and more. More than any other game, PoE gives me the feeling that the devs appreciate their community and work really hard to make things they'll enjoy.

The game is free to play, with all but a handful of the microtransactions that fund the game being purely cosmetic. I'd honestly say that it effectively has a price tag of around 20-30 bucks for the few items that are really nice to have, like extra stash tabs, a currency and map tab to store all your items, and one or two other things. Other than that, you don't have to spend a dime, and every time that I have over the years, it has felt purely like I was choosing to support the company.

Like nearly everything in this dense, impenetrable motherfucker of a game, I'm only skimming the surface. But if there's one thing that keeps me playing, year after year (I've got around 4.5k hours in the game since 2013 just logged on Steam, with a little more on top of that when I was using their standalone client), it's the sheer depth and customization. It's the ability to mix together mechanics, edge cases, interactions and bloody-minded ingenuity to produce something powerful, and above all, yours. Last league I spent most of my time on a character that ran around shouting at enemies to summon spooky clones that would then beat them to death with their shields. It reminds me a lot of Tales of Maj'Eyal in that you can accurately describe any character you make in the game and it will sound glorious. If you're into games where finding ways to make things work together in unexpected ways and leverage power from the strangest of places, and if you have an overabundance of patience, I cannot recommend PoE highly enough. For anyone else, stay far, far away from this game. It has a learning curve like a brick wall and will happily kick your teeth in if you let it. But for me, it's a shining beacon of delicious, crunchy mechanics and diversity that I utterly love to death.

MMF Freeway
Sep 15, 2010

Later!


What's wild about PoE is that I realized years ago that it was one of my favorite games ever, and yet that version of the game is so different in so many nuanced ways from the version of the game I'll be playing on Friday. It evolves at an incredibly rapid pace compared to any other live service game out there but still consistently manages to be "better" than it's previous iteration. It's absolutely a tough recommendation though. Everything that makes it the best at what it does comes down to layers and layers of systems all touching each other in this chaotically elegant way and trying to explain it is both inscrutable and makes you sound like the biggest nerd there ever was.

Elentor
Dec 14, 2004


PoE is probably the non competitive game I've had the most fun with, both in time played and in fun-per-unit of time. I once said I'm a simple person who only needs a few things in life to be happy and a new poe league every 3 months is fine by me as far as games go.

Fly Ricky
May 7, 2009

The Wine Taster

edit: nvm I found a way to script it

Fly Ricky fucked around with this message at 12:50 on Oct 21, 2021

bewilderment
Nov 22, 2007
man what





I think I fundamentally don't get Diablolikes in terms of the actual gameplay part.

I understand that part of the fun is the absolutely crazy power combos you do where you're surrounded by fifty on-hit stormclouds, or you summon skeletons that turn every enemy they kill into another skeleton until the whole screen is your skeletons. I 100% understand that.

What I don't understand is:
If that's the fun part why not just give out all those combos at the start of the game?
No farming, no grinding. Just balance the game about having those nuts combos at the start of the game. Then you'd play through the game once and call it done.

Or, if you wanted to try a different playstyle, respec or restart with one of the different crazy combos already given to you.

The devs should just hand it all to you from the start instead of wasting time with the levelling and grinding.

This is why I felt Diablo 3's ability system was pretty cool except that you had to level to 60 first. Instead you should just start at 60 and be able to shuffle all your runes around as you like.

exquisite tea
Apr 21, 2007

Carly shook her glass, willing the ice to melt. "You still haven't told me what the mission is."

She leaned forward. "We are going to assassinate the bad men of Hollywood."




People enjoy the cycle of taking a character from scratch and building them up through the exciting and imaginative confluence of skills and gear. That feeling of when a build comes together from a hodgepodge assembly of random items into an intricately arranged and thematically focused powerhouse of BIG NUMBERS is what makes ARPGs so appealing. Once you've already pushed a build as far as it can go, the thrill is gone as you can only then improve upon a few increasingly rare and incremental drops to replace the gear you already have. That's why Diablo and PoE both have seasonal/league play, as people can enjoy the process of building up a character all over again.

External Organs
Mar 3, 2006

A cheerful person, he is known as the king of vulgarities (cursing?)

exquisite tea posted:

People enjoy the cycle of taking a character from scratch and building them up through the exciting and imaginative confluence of skills and gear. That feeling of when a build comes together from a hodgepodge assembly of random items into an intricately arranged and thematically focused powerhouse of BIG NUMBERS is what makes ARPGs so appealing. Once you've already pushed a build as far as it can go, the thrill is gone as you can only then improve upon a few increasingly rare and incremental drops to replace the gear you already have. That's why Diablo and PoE both have seasonal/league play, as people can enjoy the process of building up a character all over again.

This tracks. Why do people assemble jigsaw puzzles instead of just buying a painting and looking at it? The incremental progress is where the brain goes brrrrrr.

Konstantin
Jun 20, 2005
And the Lord said, "Look, they are one people, and they have all one language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do; nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them.

Plus, you don't want new players to be overwhelmed with a massive number of options. Levelling is a good way to increase complexity as players get more familiar with the game.

Lechtansi
Mar 23, 2004

Item Get


If they gave you all the options upfront it would be a different genre. The slow incremental progress of "Help, run, there's a crab" to "I'm a walking nuclear warhead" is what makes it POE.

Who am I kidding, POE is really an excel spreadsheet on one monitor and a wiki on the other.

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?



It is very important as well to be able to go back to those earlier areas when you've basically become the equivalent of a sentient sun in pretty armor and reenact this scene:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=54UYWP_92jg

BaldDwarfOnPCP
Jun 26, 2019





Jerusalem posted:

It is very important as well to be able to go back to those earlier areas when you've basically become the equivalent of a sentient sun in pretty armor and reenact this scene:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=54UYWP_92jg

OTOH, if you don't know what you're doing and you make a build that's fun and just fine for completing the loop the first time Then, on your second go-round you (me) might get loving murdered on the beach and not have any clear path to improving said build for survivability.

Zenithe
Feb 25, 2013

Ask not to whom the Anidavatar belongs; it belongs to thee.

BaldDwarfOnPCP posted:

OTOH, if you don't know what you're doing and you make a build that's fun and just fine for completing the loop the first time

There are 10 acts now instead of just running the game three times!

GlyphGryph
Jun 23, 2013


dead gay comedy forums posted:

Homeworld
Relic Entertainment
1999

I got super hyped to see the review for this game and then I realized it was the one game called Homeworld I didn't enjoy. I'm writing this to remind myself that some time in the near future I should replay the Homeworld be Legend Entertainment and see if it holds up to the fond memories and is worth writing a post about it. (it probably won't)

Enos Cabell
Nov 3, 2004




Zaphod42 posted:

To contribute to the thread, I'm going to post about a game I've been thinking about writing up for awhile. A game I don't see goons talking about much, but I think is fairly special and unique.
Its not my favorite game of all time, but there's nothing else quite like it, and it is one of my favorite games to just relax and chill with

This game is the best sniping FPS ever made. Its also the Dark Souls of FPS.

No, not call of duty or counter-strike, hardly. Those games are too arcadey, the maps are too small for real sniping.
No, not battlefield. The maps are bigger... but still, respawning players and mass numbers prevent long-scale sniper tactics.
No, not Sniper Elite. The first one somewhat got there, but hasn't aged very gracefully. The more modern ones are more arcadey, and while shooting Nazis in the balls is fun, you don't really hunt the Nazis. Its a shooting gallery.

What is it?



The Hunter: Call of the Wild.

Almost pulled the trigger on the base game on Steam yesterday based on this post, but decided to wait for a sale. This morning a buddy noticed I had added it to my wishlist, and pointed me at the current Humble Bundle sale... game and ALL DLC for $15! :hellyeah:

https://www.humblebundle.com/games/thehunter-call-wild-complete-bundle

Now I get to spend the next half hour pasting in Steam codes lol

SlyFrog
May 16, 2007
Probation
Can't post for 16 hours!


bewilderment posted:

I think I fundamentally don't get Diablolikes in terms of the actual gameplay part.

I understand that part of the fun is the absolutely crazy power combos you do where you're surrounded by fifty on-hit stormclouds, or you summon skeletons that turn every enemy they kill into another skeleton until the whole screen is your skeletons. I 100% understand that.

What I don't understand is:
If that's the fun part why not just give out all those combos at the start of the game?
No farming, no grinding. Just balance the game about having those nuts combos at the start of the game. Then you'd play through the game once and call it done.

Or, if you wanted to try a different playstyle, respec or restart with one of the different crazy combos already given to you.

The devs should just hand it all to you from the start instead of wasting time with the levelling and grinding.

This is why I felt Diablo 3's ability system was pretty cool except that you had to level to 60 first. Instead you should just start at 60 and be able to shuffle all your runes around as you like.

For a large number of games, gating the cool stuff is pretty much essential to the core of the game.

I mean, I've always said of Magic the Gathering - if you could literally just buy the little pieces of cardboard that you want (like without randomization or secondary market price markups) at a reasonable price, most of what makes the game actually exciting for a lot of people would be gone.

Incoherence
May 22, 2004

POYO AND TEAR


I realize someone already did Killer7 but I will never shut up about it so here's another post about it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LFO7y15XqNc
"Like our chess games. You always seem to win."
"Do you know why?"
"You tell me."
"Because you're a bad player."

Killer7 is a game that makes no goddamn sense, but in its dogged devotion to not making any goddamn sense, it somehow wraps back around to being compelling. I don't even remember why I bought it for Gamecube so many years ago (I remember having to wait until I was 18 because it was M rated, a rating it richly deserves), but it was the game that convinced me that games could tell stories that'd be more difficult to tell without the level of investment that comes from playing a character, and I think was the first game I legitimately cried at while playing.

The premise kinda starts out simple: you play as the seven members of a league of assassins known as the Smith Syndicate. led by their "cleaner" Garcian Smith. Well, technically there are eight of them: the eighth is Harman, a wheelchair-bound old man who is sometimes shown to be in some sort of ancient rivalry with a loudly-dressed force of chaos named Kun Lan and sometimes shown to be a frail old man living in a room in Garcian's trailer and taken care of by an abusive young woman. Kun Lan is the leader of a group of monsters/cultists named Heaven Smile: the Heaven Smiles are invisible to everyone except the Smiths, and attack by suicide bombing their victims. Running in parallel to this is a political story about the US subjugating Japan and their subsequent relationship, and a series of other seemingly random asides.

Most of these do not get resolved. A book, Hand in Killer7, was released after the game to try to explain things, and just made the confusion worse. The climactic chapter of the game resolves Garcian's character arc, but that's about it. You're just along for the ride.

The gameplay is more rail-shooter than anything else: you're restricted to set paths through the levels with occasional branches, and when you hear an enemy (each of which makes a distinctive cry) you switch into first-person mode and stand in place to shoot them. In between are a series of fairly tame Resident Evil-esque puzzles where you find a MacGuffin somewhere in a side room, read something in the environment to learn a password, or use one of the Smiths' special abilities.

Killer7 is the brainchild of a designer named Suda51. Suda51 is a Japanese man who is evidently obsessed with American culture in general and lucha libre in particular (one of the Smiths is a luchador whose abilities are upgraded by picking up new costumes periodically, and his next game, No More Heroes, gives the main character a selection of wrestling moves). This sometimes manifests in strange ways: one of the side plots (spoilered since it's late in the game, but it doesn't make any more sense in context) has a character reveal that every American president since the founding of the republic has been elected by a shadowy cabal running out of an elementary school in... Seattle?.

The levels are populated by "remnant psyches": people the Killer7 previously killed. These include a guy in bondage gear who gives you gameplay hints, a guy with a whole collection of funny phrases written on his T-shirts, a young girl who shows up only as a disembodied head and tells you about how she murdered her family, and several other characters who you killed in previous chapters. It appears that the text for these was translated twice: once very badly for the voice-over, and once again somewhat more clearly for the subtitles. To avoid confusing the poo poo out of English-speaking audiences, the voice over has a thick layer of distortion applied to it, but you can kinda make out that they're talking about similar things in different words (and the Steam port allows you to listen to the "original" audio). This adds to the bizarre aesthetic: you're talking to someone and they say the same thing twice slightly differently.

And then there are the cutscenes. I will resist the urge to just put all of them here, but Cam Clarke chewing the scenery is particularly memorable:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vEb39GqOqW8

Masafumi Takada did the music here; a couple favorites are a boss theme for a boss that kinda feels like they should have very different boss music, and an oddly placed jam that only plays in a short hallway (which, luckily, shows up in most of the levels for the usual unexplainable reasons).

There's a pretty decent Steam port now, so you can experience whatever the hell this game is supposed to be for yourself.

Incoherence fucked around with this message at 19:35 on Oct 26, 2021

punk rebel ecks
Dec 11, 2010

We dance for socialism!


I'm shocked that no other railshooter series has bothered "evolving" the gameplay by copying Killer7's formula.

Like imagine a "big budget" House of the Dead game Killer 7 style.

Also it's crazy how ahead of it's time the game was. Killer 7 was basically a "prestige indie game" before indie games really existed.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.



Hello here is a Wizardry 8 post.

I love Wizardry 8, it is my Steam game with the most time spent on it at 387.7 hours. Monster Train is about to overtake it but that doesn't take into account that I also bought Wizardry 8 Back In The Day on actual physical media and played the hell out of it then.

I'll start off by talking about Wizardry 8's plot.

You get in a spaceship crash or something and there's supposed to be an ascension to godhood, also the Dark Savant is No Good and wants to ascend so you better ascend before he does.

With that out of the way, I'll talk about character creation.

You choose from the following races:

Human, Elf, Dwarf, Gnome, Hobbit, Faerie, Felpurr, (cat furry) Rawulf, (dog furry) Lizardman, Dracon, Mook. (big ape thing.) They are all good at different things: Lizardmen are strong and make good fighters, elves are smart and make good spellcasters, faeries are garbage and should be avoided. (That's a bit harsh, it's just they have reduced carry weight which really kinda screws your party as a whole, and severely limits what they can wear.) (They go kinda OK as ninjas - I've used them as casters a bit in the past but it's just annoying they can't wear anything or carry anything.)

And the following classes:

Fighter, Lord, Valkyrie, Ranger, Samurai, Ninja, Monk, Rogue, Bard, Gadgeteer, Priest, Bishop, Mage, Psionic, Alchemist. Again, they are all good at different things: fighters are great if you want to kill all your enemies with swords, rangers are great if you can't be bothered actively searching for items, and bishops are great if you want to obsessively collect every possible spell on one character. Go here to see me go slightly deeper in depth about why I love all of the classes: https://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?noseen=0&threadid=3473537&pagenumber=53&perpage=40#post423816067 (But especially those three I just namedropped.)

Once you've chosen your first hero's race and class, you get to assign attributes. The attributes are as follows:

Strength: good for hitting things hard
Intelligence: good for casting spells at people
Piety: good for having other people's spells not affect you as much (also important for certain spellcasters)
Vitality: good for keeping on going after getting hit a lot
Speed: good for hitting things lots of times
Dexterity: good for hitting things accurately
Senses: good for ranged combat and instant kill type of people

After that you get skills. There's general skills, combat skills, magic skills, and roguey skills. I dunno if the different sections actually have names, they're represented in game by icons instead. General skills are mostly things like knowing the stats of a monster, knowing things about an item, or a couple of the more generic combat skills which are in that section for some reason. The combat skills are skills in specific weapons, like axe or sword or whatever. In magic we have skills for the 4 different schools of magic: wizardry, divinity, psionics and alchemy, and the 6 different elements, fire, water, air, earth, mental, divine. Generally speaking a caster will only have access to one school, unless you make the objectively correct decision and pick a bishop, who has access to all 4. Roguey skills are things like locks and traps, or stealth which gradually turns you invisible so you won't be targeted but in the meantime makes your armour class better.

There's also expert skills, which unlock once you get an attribute to 100.

Strength unlocks Power Strike where you hit people harder, Intelligence unlock Power Cast where you Spell people harder, Vitality unlocks Iron Skin where you stop people hitting you, Piety unlocks Iron Will where you stop people spelling you, Dexterity unlocks reflextion for some more armour class, speed unlocks snake speed for going sooner in the turn order, and senses unlocks eagle eye for murdering people from long range.

I've talked about character creation a lot because I spend a lot of time in character creation. Levelling up in this game is one of the things I love the most. As you wander around and use your skills, they go up, which means that you want all your spellcasters exhausting all their spell points all the time so they get better at casting spells, but conversely you want all your weapon carriers to be swinging their weapons all the time, and so on. Also you get to assign points to attributes every time you level up so you can get them closer to the max of 100 and start levelling up those expert skills.

The other thing I love the most is getting loot. Weapons are all specifically designed items - no random stats like in Diablo or whatever - but you have a random chance of collecting most items in any given battle. (Which can lead to people trying a battle over and over again to see if the enemy will drop the specific item they're after.) (Like a certain cursed weapon that is absurdly good for faerie ninjas and unusable by everyone else.) I love just going around and kitting out my entire team with the best gear and levelling them up to extraordinarily high levels and then starting again with a new team.

I think I've finished the game about once in that 378 hours. The rest is all restarts.

Combat is turn based (they call it phase based but whatever, it's turn based) with you picking spells and targets at the start of your turn, and your party members automatically switching targets if their target goes down. Here's where probs the only bad thing about this game happens. Sometimes, combat can take a while. Sometimes, while fighting a battle, you'll accidentally wander too close to some other enemies, who'll join the combat, turning the battle into a potential hour long slog. (Quicksave often, and be ready to quickload and run past enemies. I don't know how anyone ever plays Iron Man in this game.)

Anyway that's enough rambling.

Muscle Tracer
Feb 23, 2007

Medals only weigh one down.

Hyper Light Drifter is the best game ever.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nWufEJ1Ava0

Hyper Light Drifter is a game about exploring and healing a dying world filled with violent monsters, ancient magitech, fellow drifters, and people just trying to survive. Its story is abstract and entirely environmental, with "dialogue" taking the form of comic-strip-like illustrations. It gameplay is influenced by 2D Zeldas, Souls-likes, and bullet-hells, but doesn't fit neatly into any one category. It's the first game of indie studio Heart Machine, who has a second game, Solar Ash, coming out on December 2nd.


Hyper Light Drifter is simple but challenging, hard but fair.

Its combat boils down to a familiar dodge-and-counterattack style, with elements of bullet hell projectile-dodging in some of the bosses. It's defined by the titular drifter's very low health, but very high mobility, creating combat with a difficulty level just under something like Sekiro, and without the punishing on-death mechanics that define true soulslikes. With a few flexible techniques at your disposal, you truly feel like a master by the end.


Hyper Light Drifter is full of secrets.

Each of these locations has a pat to a hidden area. Can you see where?
Exploration is a substantial component of the game, and it handles the "secret breakable wall" trope in a unique and elegant way: there's a certain symbol that appears wherever there's a hidden path, subtle enough that it's not obvious but apparent enough that you can find everything just by paying attention, instead of chopping random walls. Not to mention, the world itself is extremely varied and pleasant to explore. Speaking of which...


Hyper Light Drifter is loving stylish.

It has a highly saturated pixel art style that I find incredibly refreshing in the often extremely drab environments of other capital-H Hard games like Hollow Knight or Dark Souls. It incorporates plenty of fantastical creatures and humanoid species without falling back on the ubiquitous orc or alien. It also has an extraordinarily masterful soundtrack by Disasterpeace which helps define the tone of the various biomes you explore, supplemented by satisfying sound effects for dodges, hits, and kills. Overall, the combination of sound, visual, and gameplay creates an atmosphere of quiet, contemplative minimalism punctuated by moments of extreme violence, which I find incredibly satisfying.


Hyper Light Drifter is hard and beautiful, and you should play it.

Harold Fjord
Jan 3, 2004



HLD loving OWNS. It's one of the best games I didn't spend more than 20 hours playing because I beat it all and it was great the whole time.

Inspector Gesicht
Oct 26, 2012

500 Zeus a body.




The map and lack of ingame documentation sucked though. You wont know what the different outfits do or what collectibles you're missing.

Venuz Patrol
Mar 27, 2011


Chairchucker posted:

Hello here is a Wizardry 8 post.

wizardry 8 is terrific. it doesn't even have anything obviously standout about its premise or gameplay mechanics, it just does everything it does well enough to be super engaging even on your third consecutive roadside ambush.

it's a game that really speaks to the power of proper open world rpgs, too. I think there's something genuinely appealing about skulking around areas you know you're not supposed to be at yet and getting pulverized by level 80 bees. Being allowed to learn by experience which areas are and aren't safe to go is much more appealing to me than being guided to each location in order of level, with everything else locked off.

Budzilla
Oct 14, 2007

I do it because I love you.


Hidden and Dangerous 2
The forgotten WW2 shooter of 2003, the OG Call of Duty is the remembered one. However this is the game that I can keep coming back to. Developed by Illusion Softworks (now 2k Czech) of Mafia fame, HD2 is a Special Air Service WW2 squad combat simulator with RPG elements and vehicles. There is no game quite like it and while its execution and design choices are questionable at times the sum of its parts make up for a memorable experience.


fig1. An unwilling participant in dress up
It is kind of hard to describe a close analogue to this game. Think old Rainbow 6 with vehicles with elements of Sniper Elite and you are sort of there. The single player game is divided into various small campaigns throughout WW2 where at the beginning of each campaign you pick 4 soldiers and the equipment they have to carry with them. Choosing the right soldier is important since the RPG elements determine if they are a good shot, proficient with first aid or just really strong. If you continue to use the soldiers they get better over the course of the game, so do other soldiers you don't use although more slowly. More importantly if they die they won't be coming back. It has a detailed inventory too, guns have weight and take up equipment slots. Bullets ricochet off walls, guns handle like rear end as the did in WW2, ADS, mouse wheel to control movement speed, verbal communication limited by range, really cool briefings, non-linear level design, castles with Nazi gold, etc. This is for a game released in 2003.

There is a mission at an African airport where you have to escape by plane with a prisoner you have to capture that shows how good this game can get when firing on all cylinders. Your squad arrives and manages to slip in undetected since 2 of them were wearing enemy uniforms (yes you can dress up in Nazi uniforms and do subterfuge). Do you send the 2 men around and quietly dispatch the base? You start in the armoury so you could just get some good equipment and blast your way through. There is a tank nearby in the motor pool that you can steal but there are other tanks that are manned there. Maybe you could use one of your disguised men to plant a clam bomb on a manned tank and have your uniformed men steal the tank after the bomb explodes?


fig2. Next mission swapping some gear and still rocking the same outfit
If you played the original game you might get some Deja Vu when you place magnetic mines on the Tirpitz and climb aboard the minesweeper in the same Fjord to steal the enigma machine. Or running though a village that doesn't have the same wow factor as the original game's Prague level. The original shipped with co-op play but you need to get the expansion for co-op play in the sequel in one of the most bizarre decisions by a video game developer ever. The RPG element in the game wasn't really implemented right either. Someone who has an 80% shooting ability means they are good with all guns in the game, not just a rifle that includes bazookas, MP40s and tank destroyer cannons. Some RPG elements are hardly used like lockpicking and the stealth stat detmines how quiet you are AND how long you can be in front of a Kraut before he realises that you are an enemy. The interface is rough to use, opening a door requires a minimum of 2 button presses is one common example and closing the same door will use a second different button. The original was notoriously buggy on release, this was less so but the issues have been patched out. AI is only so-so.

These sound like major problems but when a game manages to have so much scope (mini submarines, De Lisle Carbine, Burma missions) and depth for a WW2 shooter (it does feel like a WW2 game with how the guns and vehicles behave), you don't really care.

Fortunately if you are interested in the game it is available on Steam and GOG for a pittance with its expansion pack included. If you do play it check for a widescreen fix and make sure you set Anisotropic filtering in your drivers to 16X to make the textures look their best. You can get the action pack for 2 dollars more an it will include the original with its expansion but it might be too much of a turn off for most people even though it did a few things better than its sequel.

A Let's Play from 2010 is not in the archive site anymore and I had to do some digging. Regrettably the videos are taken down but this artwork remembering one of the funniest bugs (and reactions) to ever happen in a Let's Play survives with it's photobucket watermark.

fig3. Larrrrrrrrrrrrry??????

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Aster0ids
Oct 13, 2018


CyberPingu posted:

The funny thing about the music is a lot of it is actually rock music from the time just synth'd up and changed juuuust enough to avoid copyright.

That's why e1m1 is basically master of puppets in reverse.

And one of the later stages is a switched around Hells Bells.

Came up randomly on this song this summer, its instantly recognizable:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wbjMHisK9cg

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