This list has all the games I've finished in January. For the February list, go here
. Jan 1st: Deadlight
. Finished this 10 minutes before midnight (though I started it about a month ago). The first thing I noticed was how stylish and good looking the game was. The gameplay and plot were alright, although there were quite many places that caused a lot of sudden deaths, which I didn't like (Rat's dungeon was the worst!). I also didn't find reading the diary pages interesting at all, and collecting the IDs was pretty pointless too. I could've done without any collectibles altogether; if anything, they were only confusing and felt tacked on. There were also some weird design choices: like how the game gives you a revolver and then takes it away less than 20 minutes later. The controls felt a little stiff too. Overall, an okay game however - nothing spectacular, but I still enjoyed it while it lasted despite some flaws. Jan 2nd: FTL - Faster Than Light
. Oh my god this game was good. Though I only finished it on Easy (with the Engi ship). I'll definitely try to beat it on Normal later. The game caught me by surprise, since the idea of a space game like this wasn't immediately appealing (I'm not a huge sci-fi fan), but luckily the game was easy to learn and it was immensely fun. Sure, luck plays a huge role in the game, but I didn't mind that so much. Funny thing: I beat the Flagship with just one bar remaining on my hull. It surely was thrilling to see who would fire the last, deciding shot first. Jan 4th: FTL
on Normal. I wrote about the victory thoroughly here.
Because of the replay value and being generally a really fun game, I would recommend this to anyone who's interested in the genre. Jan 11st: Snapshot
. This one was a decent puzzle game. I liked the basic idea, and the game tossed new things often. It started to get progressively a little bit dull near the end though, so the game length was okay. And I definitely wouldn't collect every star, photograph, or especially par time medal (the game told me I got 69%). Good game - not perfect, nor interesting enough to tickle my completionist nerve, but an entertaining one in small doses nevertheless. Jan 12th: Shadow Warrior
. At first I honestly didn't like the game too much. I kept getting lost, not knowing where to go, and dying A LOT. The controls felt also quite bad. But as I went further, I started to like the game more (after about four levels in) and it was a pretty fun shooter after all. I really liked the music, and Lo Wang was a likable protagonist (he's like Duke, but I liked him more). I don't know what the hell the plot was about but it didn't stop me from enjoying the action once I got better at the game (I played on the second highest difficulty). Jan 14th: Miasmata
. I left Eden behind on Day 19, 8.15 PM. I absolutely l-o-v-e-d this game, despite some flaws. My inner biologist was thrilled to explore the island, gathering and researching different plants and memos left by previous inhabitants in order to find the ultimate cure. There were some technical issues, such as jerky framerate, bugs such as disappearance of previous plant researches and a design choice I personally didn't agree with at all: the cat monster. But despite all those issues, I still loved the game because of the exploration factor. A literally beautiful adventure. The best ~15 hours of gaming I've had this year so far. Jan 15th: Nation Red
. I played through all the missions once (one star) so I'm counting this one as beat too. It was really similar to another game, Crimsonland - you could say it was the same game but with just zombies instead of all kinds of aliens. Fast paced, mindless action, and since I really liked Crimsonland, this one was fun too. However, I would still prefer Crimsonland over this any day. A genuinely fleshed out campaign would've been a big plus, but since there were none, and the single missions were short and there were only 18 of them, the whole experience was only average. Not a bad game, but not great or memorable either. Jan 17th: Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams
. Really awesome game. Despite being hard as balls, I really enjoyed the game even though I died a lot. Giana is just so damn energetic, happy and cute, it was impossible to not have a great mood while playing the game. And the soundtrack is AMAZING. While the Giana Sisters might have started off as a Super Mario ripoff back in the 80's, this game was completely unique because of the jumping between worlds gimmick. As it is, I'm definitely in the sisters' bandwagon now - awesome platforming and great level design. Highly recommended. Jan 19th: Shank 2
. I recall liking the first Shank, but somehow there were many things I didn't like about this one. The battles were like incoherent button-mashers, with so much shit going on in the screen it was difficult to see anything at some points. The controls could've used some work: very often I would find myself accidentally dodging instead of performing a heavy attack, because they're the same goddamn key! The game could've used a crosshair instead of just showing a mouse cursor, there was some nasty screen tearing, and the main campaign was only a pitiful two hours long. Two hours! For what is worth, the game looked nice, the animations were good and the violence was satisfyingly brutal. Still can't help but feel the game could've been a lot better. It wasn't a waste of time, but it merely felt like a snack between bigger, better games. Jan 23rd: Home
. Meh. The genre of the game is horror, but I really didn't find it scary at all. I know the pixel graphics were an artistic choice, but they didn't help with creating the atmosphere. The game was also only an hour long, and I saw the "big reveal" coming a mile away. Short, mediocre game: short, mediocre review. Jan 30th: Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal
. First of all: phew. Glad it's over. The whole BG series felt like an eternity project (for my standards); I began playing the games last September and it took this long to be done with them completely. Granted, I took a break of maybe two months around the time I had played ToB for a couple of hours: not a good idea with an RPG of this size. I had forgotten how to play pretty effectively. Also, the final battle was complete horse shit which angered and frustrated me to a point of having the need to vent in a thread (more of that here)
. I'm glad I got some tips however and was able to finish the game. Now that I have, I'll probably never go back to the series. While Shadows of Amn was great in my opinion, the expansion left a really sour taste in my mouth. It's time to move on. Jan 31st: Waxworks
. One of those "where the fuck do I go, what the fuck do I do" type of games. I would've never had the patience to play this to the end without a walkthrough at hand at all times. The game doesn't give you much hints as to what you should do, what items to grab, et cetera, and it's easy to get lost because every corridor looks the same. I also hate it when a game can become unsolvable due to an error made by the player. The music was laughably bad and the combat was horrendous and very random. The game was pretty much a turd no matter how you look at it - that said, the game still had a little bit of charm, for some reason I'm not sure of, so I could keep going. This is a game of the early 90s after all, so some things must be forgiven. Definitely not a great game, but bearable.