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Flanders

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  1. I note with interest that the re-release has prompted increased interrogation of how weird sections of the internet are about this film. No, of course Avatar doesn’t have the ‘cultural impact’ of something like Star Wars you cretins, it’s one film that people enjoyed compared to a near-50 year media empire. Related to that, I realised the other day that Avatar is comfortably better than all but three of the eleven (!) Star Wars films. Could make a case for it being better than Return of the Jedi as well but wouldn’t go that far myself.
  2. I feel like this game should have a PSA at the start that tells the player the easiest setting is still really fun and well worth playing if you find higher difficulties too challenging. I got to the end of Doom Hunter base on normal and decided to drop down because I could see that there were going to be more and more chokepoints I might have trouble with. Happy to report that easy mode still feels like the same game and provides a decent degree of challenge while not being quite as overwhelming. Add me to the group who can’t understand what people are whinging about with the story stuff, when this first came out I presumed from the reaction in here that it was filled with long po-faced cutscenes and forced walking exposition sections. In reality it’s a very unintrusive tale of how an Iron Maiden concept album came to life, it’s not remotely serious and is just a device to hang ever more metal imagery around the action.
  3. Really enjoyed episode 3, this show has a lot going for it. I’m also very much liking this and House of the Dragon being on at the same time, it’s a real treat to experience two massive shows that on the surface look similar but in reality are absolute polar opposites in how they tell their stories. I internally groaned a little bit when I realised we were going to get an extended Harfoot bit, but they won me back by delving into the underlying harshness of their culture - adds a real pathos to them, they’re not just hobbits on a hike. But the biggest excitement in this episode was all around Halbrand:
  4. The section everyone thinks is best in Resident Evil 4: The village Section which actually is the best in Resident Evil 4 and by default all of videogames: The castle
  5. Had a day off today. Planned to start a new shiny game, watch a great film. Instead I scorched through Leyndell through to the Mountaintops of the Giants on my NG Plus run. There’s something utterly thrilling about speed running what took me months. Might go and kill the Fire Giant right now.
  6. I thought them not showing Galadriel’s brother’s death was a case of them parking that for a flashback later in the series, most likely for a character episode delving into her obsession with Sauron. I quite enjoyed this after really not expecting to - agreed that the dialogue is not great but it managed good world building from the off, which is really what Lord of the Ring is all about. I’ll keep watching, which is a surprise to me. One thing I particularly liked was the general character design of Durin’s wife, and the Dwarves in general - felt like they very quickly fleshed them out into a distinctive culture beyond the ‘angry short beardy guys in armour who like to mine’ trope that we’re all familiar with.
  7. I was trying to figure out why I deviate so wildly between being gripped and completely bored by this, and I realised it was because anything that’s ‘off-screen’ is interesting but in between that you literally are just watching three deeply tedious films via clips that are out of order.
  8. Schreier already did his big Halo Infinite story and unfortunately it was a puff piece. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-12-08/how-microsoft-s-halo-infinite-went-from-disaster-to-triumph Guy definitely has studios he likes and studios he doesn’t. Of course, this article was also influenced by the bafflingly high scores this game got when it was released in a wholly unfinished state last year.
  9. I do think it’s worth noting that Naughty Dog seem to like making and releasing games fairly frequently relative to a lot of their peers at the top of the AAA space - I think the biggest gap between any Naughty Dog release in their entire history is Lost Legacy to Last of Us 2 and that still came in under three years. I would imagine they feel this approach - filling the gaps between their big releases with stuff like Left Behind, Lost Legacy and the remakes - helps them keep iterating their processes and design to maintain their big titles at the cutting edge, and you can see how that pays off in something like The Last of Us 2. Doing the remake makes perfect sense in this context, it’s just that Sony have been dumb with the pricing, even cutting it to £50 would have silenced most complaints I reckon.
  10. God of War and nothing else. A genuinely paltry outlook, Starfield slipping left a big hole. I will also be working my way through a big backlog, starting by cranking Doom Eternal down to easy mode, woooo.
  11. Completed it two nights ago. Will have more detailed thoughts eventually, but wow that was a shivering thrill to see the words ‘God Slain’ come up on the screen. I then respecced as a sorcerer build, went straight into NG plus and within 90 minutes Margit and Godrick are already dead. A task that took me approx 30 hours in the first run. Assaulting the main gate of Stormveil to run straight to Godrick is a trip.
  12. I hope that I’m not humblebragging but I’ve piled through most of the endgame areas at this point - Farum Azula, Sub-terranean Shunning Grounds, Moonlight Altar and just over half of the Haligtree - and for the life of me I can’t understand all the complaints I’ve seen about these areas being unfair difficulty spikes. They’re tough for sure and I’ve died a lot - Haligtree is delightfully gnarly - but I reckon I could reel off at least five nastier non-big boss challenges in pretty much every precious From game. There’s nothing in Elden Ring that comes close in difficulty to the run to the first Unseen Village lantern in Bloodborne that has those horrible bell maidens respawning mobs left right and centre. Or the Valley of Defilement in Demon’s Souls, or Irithyll in DS3, which was an area I never ever felt remotely confident against the regular enemies. I don’t know, like I said before I no longer think this is a weakness, it’s a strength, but Elden Ring feels to me like the easiest From game by a mile. I don’t get how you can have played any of their other games and think anything in Elden Ring is particularly unfair.
  13. Looking at those gifs, Bloodborne is just by far the coolest Souls game isn’t it. It’s got infinite swagger.
  14. I might be remembering it wrong but I could swear that you don’t actually need to do any of the Subsistence/repeat missions in Chapter Two to unlock the new stuff. I think you can just do side missions and that after a certain number it triggers progression, which is much easier because there’s small ones you can knock off quickly. I will admit the game doesn’t exactly make this clear though.
  15. ‘Where do the bees sleep’ is the Silent Cartographer of the PS4 generation. It’s where MGS V takes all the brakes off and goes full pelt, I absolutely adored that mission. I feel like the quality of MGS V’s main missions is underrated relative to the general (and correct) reverence for its systems and free-form gameplay. There are a bunch of absolute bangers in there.
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