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  1. #18461
    Lesser Hivemind Node L_No's Avatar
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    Thanks to the kindness of our fellow forumite DeVadder, I finally got around to playing Dear Esther. I didn't manage to finish it last night, but will probably do so tonight. The atmosphere of the game is absolutely incredible, the island evokes just the right kind of loneliness and contemplation to fully feel the impact of the spoken word.
    Want to add me on Steam? Steam name: Mr. Gert

  2. #18462
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    2 friends and I booted up Payday: The Heist last night. Had a bit of a laugh because we were just dire at it. 1st round, 1st level, host accidently sets it to Overkill. We're only Rep: 0. Didn't last long at all. Cleared it on Easy. Then attempted Streets on Normal, owned. Easy, owned. Skip to 3rd mission. Finally get to planting C4 everywhere, we all get wiped. Back to Streets, this time on Easy, and we beat it... just. Fun game, but frustrating as you have to grind for a bit to get decent equipment.

  3. #18463
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Jesus_Phish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Internet View Post
    I got a little buzzed and was talking to my fiancee, and she asked me what a lo-fi game was, and I showed her VVVVV. I figured since it was open I would try veni vidi vici, and actually beat it this time. That's pretty cool.
    The first time I "beat" veni vidi vici I ended up on the wrong side of that little block. I hated my life for a few minutes.
    "Halo is designed to make the player think "I look like that, I am macho sitting in my undies with my xbox""

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  4. #18464
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jesus_Phish View Post
    I "beat" veni vidi vici
    Its a form of self harm. Seek help.
    I'm failing to writing a blog, specifically about playing games the wrong way
    http://playingitwrong.wordpress.com/

  5. #18465
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus sonson's Avatar
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    Skulls of the Shogun, which is pretty much perfect for what it is. Tightly Balanced symmetrical warfare with a very well polished set of mechanics based around manoeuvre, map control, unit counters and special abilities. And cute as a button.

    Actions are limited to 5 per turn which means that you always have to stay sharp even if you have a numerical/territorial advantage. There are no units which aren't vulnerable if properly managed, which likewise means every unit is vulnerable to something. Good trade off between fixed but strong battle formations and more flexible but brittle skirmishing tactics. There's a real and expertly managed tension between the huge advantages of playing with the long game in mind and the need for speedy conquest without over expanding.

    AI is very impressive and clearly capable of formulating and executing a plan whilst also reacting to circumstances, never seen it do something simply becuase it can, every move it makes tends to further it's goals.

    A really tight and polished set of Wargame Lite systems, highly recommended if that's your thing.
    Last edited by sonson; 26-11-2013 at 01:47 PM.

  6. #18466
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    Baldur's Gate (GOG + mods, on BG2 engine) has drawn me back in to complete an old playthrough. I can agree with some of the criticism leveled at the game: low-level combat is a bit too RNG-heavy and the starting areas are mostly empty forests. It does become more fun once you get a good party together, level them a bit and find some of the better spells. Shame I need to set up camp so often to recover healing spells after tough fights, or long wanders looking for side quests.

    Just started playing the Hearthstone beta, having watched Totalbiscuit and Trump's streams for a while. I agree with this RPS article on Arena. It's the most enjoyable game mode, for me. I like the level playing field and the opportunity to try decks I wouldn't normally build. The price is just a little steep given the low returns for inexperienced players. I'll keep playing it for a while. Got a good draft on my Rogue with 2-1 right now.

  7. #18467
    Network Hub PeteC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sonson View Post
    Skulls of the Shogun, which is pretty much perfect for what it is. Tightly Balanced symmetrical warfare with a very well polished set of mechanics based around manoeuvre, map control, unit counters and special abilities. And cute as a button.

    Actions are limited to 5 per turn which means that you always have to stay sharp even if you have a numerical/territorial advantage. There are no units which aren't vulnerable if properly managed, which likewise means every unit is vulnerable to something. Good trade off between fixed but strong battle formations and more flexible but brittle skirmishing tactics. There's a real and expertly managed tension between the huge advantages of playing with the long game in mind and the need for speedy conquest without over expanding.

    AI is very impressive and clearly capable of formulating and executing a plan whilst also reacting to circumstances, never seen it do something simply becuase it can, every move it makes tends to further it's goals.

    A really tight and polished set of Wargame Lite systems, highly recommended if that's your thing.
    Agree with all of this. It was really well thought out; every feature had a point to it and it encouraged you to really think about every move with its risk/reward nature. Having said that, the optimal tactic was usually to sit tight and let them come to you while you pick them off one by one, (although that wasn't always possible on some maps.)

    Just a shame about the Windows 8 exclusivity. No-one bought it then and it got roundly ignored when it finally came to Windows 7. I honestly think it's one of the best in its genre and deserves a little more love than it gets.

  8. #18468
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    Moved along to Electronic Super Joy - I fancied a tough platformer and it had cards and - erm - well...

    Aside from the childish 90s 'ooh' and 'ah' samples (you can disable them with the PG Filter but the music then goes nuts on some levels) it's a nice bit of design but it's let down by a lack of playtesting and too much 'cheap shot' difficulty.

    It's hard - and I don't mind hard - but it borders on unfairly hard and a lot of the problem is in the controls or the way the movement works. You 'stamp' missiles to kill them but that stamp has no area-of-effect so you can stamp and a missile which is 1-2px away from you (perhaps inside a floor or wall) won't be affected but it then INSTANTLY kills you. It feels cheap and nasty and shit.

    It's a shame - there's some really nice ideas on there, but by relying on cheap cuntery to give it longevity it killed-itself-off stone-dead before the end of World 1 - so long- tata - thanks for the cards.

  9. #18469
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    Quote Originally Posted by trjp View Post
    Moved along to Electronic Super Joy - I fancied a tough platformer and it had cards and - erm - well...

    Aside from the childish 90s 'ooh' and 'ah' samples (you can disable them with the PG Filter but the music then goes nuts on some levels) it's a nice bit of design but it's let down by a lack of playtesting and too much 'cheap shot' difficulty.

    It's hard - and I don't mind hard - but it borders on unfairly hard and a lot of the problem is in the controls or the way the movement works. You 'stamp' missiles to kill them but that stamp has no area-of-effect so you can stamp and a missile which is 1-2px away from you (perhaps inside a floor or wall) won't be affected but it then INSTANTLY kills you. It feels cheap and nasty and shit.

    It's a shame - there's some really nice ideas on there, but by relying on cheap cuntery to give it longevity it killed-itself-off stone-dead before the end of World 1 - so long- tata - thanks for the cards.
    I had a similar experience. The worst part is that the third world is great, but it's not worth it getting through the first two.

  10. #18470
    Quote Originally Posted by Jesus_Phish View Post
    The first time I "beat" veni vidi vici I ended up on the wrong side of that little block. I hated my life for a few minutes.
    I actually tried it again and beat it. Twice... More or less. I was afraid I was going to end up on the wrong side, so I moved close to the right wall. Close to the spikes. Too close. Then I couldn't stop until actually beating it.

  11. #18471
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Jesus_Phish's Avatar
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    Yeah I eventually got it, I think it took me something like 40 minutes of non-stop attempts. The feeling I got when I finally got that shiny trinket. Very few games have beaten that feeling.
    "Halo is designed to make the player think "I look like that, I am macho sitting in my undies with my xbox""

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  12. #18472
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    Quote Originally Posted by Internet View Post
    I had a similar experience. The worst part is that the third world is great, but it's not worth it getting through the first two.
    I just don't think they got anyone to play it other than themselves - it goes from interesting to 'hard' to 'holy moly' well-within 20 mins of play and it has that "oh that was unfair" thing running right through it from the moment it gets harder.

    Real shame - some genuinely original stuff in there but the developer(s) needed to put someone in-front of it and watch them play it. Classic mistake - by the time you're done making a game you're REALLY good at it and you just can't see the brick-wall you've made.

    For me, a platformer must have a "Oh I screwed that up - try again" thing going-on constantly - not a "Oh cmon for fucks sake" thing ;)

  13. #18473
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Tikey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jesus_Phish View Post
    The first time I "beat" veni vidi vici I ended up on the wrong side of that little block. I hated my life for a few minutes.
    My experience was worse.
    First time I "beat" it I ended up on top of the little block, and in the rush and excitement I moved to the wrong side.

  14. #18474
    Lesser Hivemind Node L_No's Avatar
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    Finished Dear Esther last night. Very impressive, and very bleak. The graphics were beautiful too, especially the caves. I ended up reading various explanations of the story for the rest of the evening. Games/interactive stories like these remind me why I love pc gaming.
    Want to add me on Steam? Steam name: Mr. Gert

  15. #18475
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    Quote Originally Posted by L_No View Post
    Finished Dear Esther last night. Very impressive, and very bleak. The graphics were beautiful too, especially the caves. I ended up reading various explanations of the story for the rest of the evening. Games/interactive stories like these remind me why I love pc gaming.
    Going to be that guy again, but... ugh. Sorry, just ugh. Car crash, his wife was killed, he wanders around trying to look for Answers, including talking to the bloke in the other car, he doesn't find any, he kills himself (maybe not but I don't really care), the end. There, now these people can get on with over-analysing something that's actually worth the effort. Oh, I'm sorry, was I being flippant?

    Seriously, though, Dan Pinchbeck seems like a nice guy and I haven't played A Machine For Pigs, but people praising Dear Esther's writing (never mind actually thinking there's room for multiple interpretations of it) is just one of those things that make me think an awful lot of PC owners have very little idea what good writing is/can be. I have absolutely no problem at all with the idea of videogames-as-art-installation, that would be why I bought Dear Esther in the first place, but it was far from the best way to do it. Leaden, dreary, over-complicated prose that's comically eager to be Deep and Meaningful.

  16. #18476
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus DaftPunk's Avatar
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    Its very hard to take some good pictures from XCOM :|

  17. #18477
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by L_No View Post
    Finished Dear Esther last night. Very impressive, and very bleak. The graphics were beautiful too, especially the caves. I ended up reading various explanations of the story for the rest of the evening. Games/interactive stories like these remind me why I love pc gaming.
    I was totally floored by the ending, [spoilers]I had no idea I was playing as a seagull.[spoilers]
    I'm failing to writing a blog, specifically about playing games the wrong way
    http://playingitwrong.wordpress.com/

  18. #18478
    Lesser Hivemind Node L_No's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eight Rooks View Post
    There, now these people can get on with over-analysing something that's actually worth the effort.
    Well, what is or is not worth the effort depends on who you're asking, really. It's a good thing people bother to analyse it in the first place, if you ask me. At least people still think about it after they've exited the game.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eight Rooks View Post
    people praising Dear Esther's writing (never mind actually thinking there's room for multiple interpretations of it) is just one of those things that make me think an awful lot of PC owners have very little idea what good writing is/can be. I have absolutely no problem at all with the idea of videogames-as-art-installation, that would be why I bought Dear Esther in the first place, but it was far from the best way to do it. Leaden, dreary, over-complicated prose that's comically eager to be Deep and Meaningful.
    Sorry to hear you didn't enjoy it. My praise didn't concern the writing alone, but the atmosphere as a whole, in case that wasn't clear. I can see what you mean when you say that the writing is clunky in places, but then again, it's a whole lot more intriguing than the writing in 99% of the games I've played over the last few years. That people enjoyed Dear Esther doesn't mean they don't know what good writing is or can be. Hell, I happen to enjoy Shakespeare and Oscar Wilde too, but for a game/interactive story, Dear Esther made a commendable effort to offer at least some depth in it's story. In my opinion, every attempt at pushing a game's story beyond an excuse to slaughter enemies or solve puzzles should be applauded.
    Last edited by L_No; 27-11-2013 at 01:03 PM.
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  19. #18479
    Lesser Hivemind Node Kaira-'s Avatar
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    I've taken up on Dungeon Crawl: Stone Soup again after a long while (and waiting for the new pre-releases of ADoM fixing some bugs). It's... actually better game than I thought. I can't really explain why the game feels easier than ADoM despite me barely ever making to D:7 or deeper. And the unique monsters are a really, really great touch. Grinder and Sigmund can go off themselves, though. Nasty pair of guys to find on the same level.

  20. #18480
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    What I liked most in DCSS coming from Nethack (both in ascii) is the beauty of the game.
    When I first started it it reminded me of the map generation of Dwarf Fortress : wonderful use of colors in the ascii art, rooms and places in DCSS are much more varied than in Nethack, it's beautiful to look at !

    But I never really got the time to get into it... But with a well-made tutorial and lots of guidance for beginners, it has become the roguelike I recommend to newcomers.

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