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RubberJohnny

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Everything posted by RubberJohnny

  1. Despite the technical issues, this is pretty good, but it's annoying how many things feel like a step back from Arceus. That game had super fast and fluid traversal, here your Miraidon is slow and just has the worst jankiest floatiest sluggiest jump to crawl about. And the town in that game was barebones as fuck, but it had all the critical stuff in a little compact area so you could go back and knock out everything super quick, here it's way too big, it's like an MMO town when the servers are down. There's loads of massive empty areas where there's no reason to ever go and there's like 10 identikit cafes because they've had to stretch everything out too much. Same goes for the regions, they're massive, but really lacking in points of interest and so you just end up seeing the same creatures everywhere, Arceus actually did more with less, there were a lot more unique areas in a more compact space like a little lake with an island that has a unique creature that rewarded exploration.
  2. Bayonetta 3 - Oof! I went through Bayo 2 recently and loved the combat and hated everything around it, and this is like they've made the combat worse and less varied while quadrupling down on the bullshit. If you drank every time there was just a regular bossfight with no gimmicks, I swear you'd still be able to walk in a straight line come the end of the game. Despite them marketing how happy they were to get the chance to make a third, the impression you get is they resent the series and really don't want to keep it going, they keep assassinating Bayonetta (both literally, and character-wise) and instead what we have here is a mash up of leftovers from Scalebound and Rising 2. Unfortunately the kaiju stuff is a proper stinker that drags the game down, and the new character is not particularly compelling, being a butt-monkey comic relief with no gameplay variety. The less said about the 'plot' the better. I want to like Platinum, but genuinely think the knockoff Chinese gachas are the better games at the moment, at least they focus on mechanical thoroughness rather than empty spectacle. Mihoyo went from never having made a 3D model before to popularising the character action template and making it accessible to millions to making one of the most popular games of all time in a mere 4 years, half the time since the last Bayonetta that it took Platinum to curl out this turd.
  3. There was one I managed to get up that had a fully explorable penthouse on top with some notes about a Soviet diplomat, which I don’t remember being used in any quests I did.
  4. They already did that with Sw/Sh and Dexit though, it was only a couple of years ago. They've been reusing future proof assets and models since the 3DS.
  5. I liked what this was doing for most of this, the big problem is that really:
  6. They didn't a previewer did, and it was super spurious (they just said it had multiple kingdoms, like FFXII, or y'know, any of em). You shouldn't need a nostalgia reference to get excited anyway, the game looks great!
  7. Actually around 2001 there were still paid online services on PC, you still had stuff like Gamespy Arcade for £5/£10 per month that offered servers for a bunch of games and voice chat, basically the XBL service. They were kind of on their way out though, a holdover from the late 90s AOL era where everything was these little gated communities, you had Heat.net (bought by Sega for the DC, and killed by it) which was another and TEN.net, which was £30(!) a month that eventually just became a site for flash games. A big selling point of Blizzards games at the time was that their online service, Battle.net, was free - but they never really capitalised on that and expanded it to third parties like Valve did with Steam, which is ultimately what did the paid ones in.
  8. Genshin Impact: Sumeru - There may be more coming to the region, but the expansion story is complete, so it's review time. Genshin is, like it or not, proving that GAAS can be superior to non-service games, even singleplayer ones. This is 70 hours of free singleplayer content, with the best exploration in any open-world game out there. If we imagine a counterfactual world where this was launched as a box product, some impossibly massive billion-dollar-decade-in-the-making singleplayer RPG with all the kingdoms on Day 1, it still would only be as good as that 2020 base game in quality. Whereas what they've delivered now is just beyond that - the most varied kingdom they've done, new gameplay mechanics, more cutscenes and production value, you can feel the money they've been given feeding back into the product and making it better. It's kind of absurd, it almost seems an unassailable position, how can any competitor compete when they don't start with this income, and don't have the years of experience of shipping patches every six weeks and refining future content based on feedback from them? They can maybe compete with 2020 base game Genshin, but not 2022 Genshin, let alone 202X Genshin, which is what they'd be competing with when they launch. Anyway, if you haven't played since release, it's worth giving it a go on your PS5, they even added the support for the taptic feedback recently.
  9. I mean that's not remotely how motion controls or VR works, you can still be superhumanly strong or agile or be taller and have longer reach in VR, in fact Bonelabs just released and allows you to do all three. It limits you to the human range of motion, but so does absolutely every other game on the market that features a human protagonist or anthropomorphic creature, and you're not claiming they're all shite in favour of I dunno, the true gaming god Snake Pass.
  10. I always have two on the go, usually something longform and something better for shorter play sessions, although I tend to go through the latter at like a 5:1 rate because finding time to jump into a big old RPG is tough.
  11. I think Days Gone might end up here. The first few hours aren't bad, there's some genuine panic in running out of petrol in the middle of nowhere, and some good tension in that you're properly vulnerable and go down as easily as the enemies. But the missions aren't really keeping up their end of the bargain, most are just "go to location, hit X to interact", or slow social walks behind people. I have a flashback about picking plants that involves slow walks and picking three plants, I then have the present day mission where I have to go to a location and pick three plants for real, thanks guys. I'm ten hours in(!) and it still feels like I'm waiting for the plot to start, like it's incredible the extent there is just no drive or motivation for the player or the main character except to do generic open world activities like clear camps and reminisce about your dead wife. The game keeps teasing that something might happen - a helicopter! No it's just a series of shadowing quests, fuck me. A new area! No it's just the same stuff in slightly different scenery. I did wonder why people were so down on it because it looked well-made, but it's like they spent 95% of the effort on the prestige cutscenes and 5% on the the missions that they feature in. And I don't like Sam Witwer, so I want to skip the cutscenes.
  12. I mean unless they're shutting down the studio instead then it literally is. Can you name one that actually pioneered some new engine or something? This was basically a marketing line from the original Last of Us re-release because they didn't just want to go "yeah we're just filling a gap in the release schedule", but it's not even true generally. Most of these remakes are by experienced or main teams on industry standard engines like Unreal, and I don't think any of them have even bothered to pretend anything similar. Everyone knows the true reason they exist is nostalgia on the consumer side and easy money on the publisher side, I'd have more respect if people just admitted that than tried arguments like this that they don't even believe. Same with this argument, a new game would be everyones first time with a game, so much better at achieving the "enables someone elses first time with a game" thingy you say is their reason to exist. I dunno, why not just make a new project then? Is there anything inherent in Alpha Protocol that couldn't be done as a new espionage game in that style without needing to tie yourself to an original which not many people played? (I'd actually argue we're well into the mid games being remade, simply because there's been so many of them publishers are well into shuffling down the back of the sofa cushions, I played the Front Mission games a couple of years ago and they're uninteresting 6/10s at best, but they're getting remakes now)
  13. I think the problem is none of the games they’re showing off look particularly evolved, they’re all the same on rails shooting galleries or on rails passive experiences where you marvel at the scale and things being close to you they had in 2016 - tech demos, in short. Instead of delivering on the hope that these would evolve into fully fledged exclusive games for VR that explore the medium and are worth buying a headset for, we’ve basically just got sequels that still seem like the same limited tech demo format, seven years later and quite a bit more expensive. It feels like it’s basically given up on the whole pitch that it’s a transformative thing for games, instead settling for “this’ll do, yeah?” Nah.
  14. The argument that it's about preserving games is bunk, surely? Backwards compatibility and remaking things are completely different topics, and you're just trying to deliberately conflate them to avoid acknowledging the problems. If you want old games to be accessible and playable forever on new hardware, Steam's managed that for the last 18 years, and Xbox has managed it on console for the last generation. Just get Sony to do their part! What remakes have actually often done is taken the original version that you claim to be preserving offline and made it unpurchaseable forever for a shittier version with manual signup requirements, no offline mode, a bunch of changes, and a 30x markup: exhibit A being GTA Remastered, but there have been plenty more. Can't have the original selling for £2 on your infinite shelf when we need them to buy Sonic: Origins with it's incredible added feature list like "background animation in the main menu" for a mere additional £38. That's not even getting into the claim that this is all for 'new fans', an opinion some people apparently hold sincerely! Quite how you can think of trailers that just reference fan memes and include pre-order bonuses of stuff like pre-release outfits only seen in game magazine screenshots from 1997 and think "ah yes, this is not for people my age, but for those with no pre-existing familiarity with the material", you must have used media literacy as a dump stat.
  15. They suck, as you say it’s a big waste of talent spent on easy nostalgia pandering for olds.
  16. I honestly thought people would be bringing it up to say how much of a fuss over nothing it was, a lot of 2016 games got hit with all the post-Gamergate takes that were a little bit overblown in retrospect, the Shadow of Mordor series seemed to cop a lot of them (it had that fuss over the kiss your wife bit too). The main reason it’s there is so they can actually have the villain do some acting, rather than be an impersonal force of darkness. It’s not sexist because they do it with Sauron too (as does Rings of Power). And she’s never used in a sexy way, she doesn’t have any stupid goth outfit with a spider motif, it’s just a plain black, non revealing dress. What was the problem, exactly? It’s like that fuss over a pinup spray in the first Overwatch, if you listened to people at the time it was like this one minor thing was single-handedly responsible for stopping women in the games industry, now it’s completely forgotten and also looks a bit trivial when that series is mostly known for animations of the characters railing each other with 12 inch futa horsecocks.
  17. PC has had that and faster loading times since 2008 though, not so much "next gen" as 360 gen. I don't think he's wrong on the general point that this is the least impressive leap yet, we're still largely on cross-gen titles after a couple of years and what exclusive titles there are, are largely remakes of generations old titles because old fogey gamers are more interested in nostalgia-pandering than new titles that would take advantage of the hardware.
  18. Horizon Zero Dawn - It's got a map full of icons, a horse and a bow, clearly it's a 2016 open world game. Wait, don’t go, it's actually pretty good! The big improvement on the formula here is that because those 'icons on the map' are big monsters, the gameworld is lot more active, and exploration a lot more interesting. The game maintains a sense of danger for about half or more of its' running length, and most people will come away with various anecdotes about the time they stumbled into some beastie they'd never encountered before and it kicked their arse or left them cowering in a bush while it destroyed their horse. The combat system is also pretty unique, and I ended up using every tool in the box, although not on every enemy. It's mostly useful on making the ones that are hard to deal with a bit more manageable - very mobile and aggressive enemies can be tethered or tripwired, tear can knock off ranged weapons and armour, fire arrows are great for grounding the annoying flying guys, or making fuel canisters explode, etc. Only the melee, which is very flailly, is a bit shit. And Sony's prestige take puts the focus on the story, which is again, pretty good. It's mostly told in bespoke dungeons which are linear but with nice side areas for exploration, there's a lot of things like that which have you nodding appreciatively - dialogue choices that let you define yourself within the archetypes of a YA protagonist, for instance - clever. It's not perfect, obviously, you feel the lack of freeform traversal that has been BotW's biggest impact on the genre in games since, and there are a bunch of nitpicks that could be improved on: But by and large this is comfortably in the upper tier of the genre. I would play the sequel if it made it to PC.
  19. I have also come to the unfortunate conclusion that this was 'mid'. I'll echo the Star Wars comparison, it's basically that kind of hack writer template to a prequel - plots that are entirely "just so" stories to link names and things we recognise: "here's how Han got his blaster, here's how he met Lando and here's how he learned to do that trick with the Falcon". It's plot writing entirely in service of pandering to nostalgia, rather than actually building a good story on its own merits, as if we didn't have enough examples of that already. The whole mythril in the rings plot is like 40% of the season and seems to only exist to tease the Balrog and a few familiar names and locations, for instance, and it's pretty poorly written and established for anything beyond that. The fading of the elves barely gets a mention before they find mythril and then afterwards they're talking about it as if they've got days to live if they're not across the ocean while there's a whole bustling elven city out the window. Galadriel goes from doing everything to hunt down Sauron to not caring about all the orcs that have taken over the Southlands to spend days turning up in the forge for some leaden on-the-nose exposition. Surely the writers knew where this was going? Surely they could have made it fit together a bit more elegantly? Gotta hit those beats, gotta do the things that get people going "I know what this is, I clapped when I saw it", and get headlines on content aggregators called things like Nerdfeed going "OMG you won't believe whose teased in Episode 6!" over intelligent writing and consistent characterisation. There's great performances throughout, it looks and sounds stunning, but it kind of can't escape being a cynical 'brand extension', unfortunately.
  20. SEGA would be the most disliked company if gaming if they were still around "like in their prime", they were more greedy than EA, with more crunch than Ubisoft and more staffing controversies than Activision, at least those guys didn't have literal gangsters working for them who kidnapped and blackmailed people. Sod the few cherry picked titles you champion - most of their releases were just doing cheapo shovelware clones of something a third party studio had success with, only with half the content, that played worse, made by devs forced to toil in hellish crunch conditions for 3 months, but were still the same price. Everyone fucking hated them, developers hated them for ripping off their ideas and crushing them with their size. Retailers hated them for stinking up the shelves with stuff no one bought, what they didn't like our 11 CDs of Virtua Fighter characters 3D renders that don't do anything? Gamers hated them, for constantly launching the buggiest products on the market and abandoning all their hardware for new consoles every 2 years. Fuck you, we're SEGA, we're going to do the same thing that failed the last three times, because an inability to learn lessons is practically our motto! There's a reason the reaction to them getting out of the console industry was a mix of celebration, mirth and "good riddance", not that you'd know that if you'd been going off two decades of historical revisionism.
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