This list has all the games I've finished in February. For the January list, go here
. Feb 3rd: Lucius
. Oh man, the game has so much wasted potential! Had it been a Hitman-style game with truly free action, it could've been great. Instead, the game was essentially a puzzle adventure, where you pick up all kinds of objects and there's always only one, predetermined way to kill a current target. This was made harder by the fact that quite often I wasn't given enough hints as to where I should go or what I should do. I guess I was supposed to roam around the mansion just looking for stuff in case I randomly pick up something vital, and that's not very good designing. Also, about the mansion: there were this plaques next to every door, indicating what room it is. I understand they're there to help the player, but seriously: what mansion-owners are so absent-minded, they can't remember which room is which if there are no plaques to indicate them? Besides, Lucius had a map: why couldn't the info be there, instead? The inventory management was also pretty weird: why couldn't I simply point at an object with the mouse and click to select it? Animation and lip synch were also of poor quality. Well, final verdict: I guess the game was alright even as it is, it's just that it could've been so, so much better. Oh, and the ending completely sucks. The final chapter felt incredibly rushed and the game kinda just ends all of a sudden. Can't really recommend this game. Feb 4th: The Last Express
. I don't know...I have strongly mixed feelings about this one. I really liked the setting: a murder mystery on a train in the early 1900s. On the other hand, the game had many little things that irritated me from the get-go. Why was the animation really smooth and life-like in one scene, but jerky as fuck in the next? Why wasn't the game in full full-screen, but instead had these really big borders on the sides? Why couldn't there be an option to have subtitles for spoken English too? Only German, Russian and French were subtitled. As a non-native English speaker, it was very easy to miss (or forget) key dialogs. The game also expects the player to know at all times what he should be doing, when to do it, and not ask any questions as to why to do it. For example, after I had got on board the train, I went to find my friend and changed clothes. That is pretty self-explanatory. But then the next step is to go talk to a German fellow on the dining car...why? Bear in mind, my character doesn't know any of the people on board. What's the motive to go talk to a man my character doesn't know? Also, as with Waxworks, it's possible to make the game unwinnable if the player misses certain key items. In the worst case scenario, the player will have to roll back A LOT. To recap: setting A+, the game design in overall...leaves a lot to be desired. Feb 7th: Closure
. I really liked this game! Definitely my favorite out of the Humble Indie Bundle 7 First Tier games. Creepy atmosphere, really good music, clever and challenging but not too hard puzzles, and a great visual style. The physics glitched occasionally, but other than that, a really great experience. There is no reason not to play this if you got the HiB7 bundle. Not much else to say about this one. Feb 9th: Zombies.
I understand it's a joke game, so I won't be too harsh on it. The graphics resembled something that could've been on an Atari machine in the 80's, AI was bad (friendlies were nothing but on the way and kept getting killed; glad they tossed the idea of gathering survivors after about halfway through), most of the weapons after getting a shotgun were useless, and boss fights were annoying because the bosses would often go "hide" in an invisible corner and a wall would be on the way. And the game was only about an hour long. Still, it was an okay game - perhaps a bit Postal-esque, and a nice stress reliever (I've always wanted to wreck an office!) Despite the flaws, shooting zombies was still pretty fun. Plus I got the game for free, so can't complain. The sandwich level was whack, but overall I appreciated the humor in the game too, while it wasn't laugh-out-loud worthy. Overall, a decent game. Feb 16th: Mass Effect 3
. I must admit I didn't remember much of what had happened in the story so far when I began playing, but this third game did a good job getting me back on track of the past events early on. There were some things I didn't like in the game; for example, how the journal constantly updated itself while I was on the Citadel and Shepard "accidentally overheard" private conversations which launched new quests. I would've rather initiate them myself, especially since all of them were basically improvised fetch quests (jump to another nebula, scan for resources, launch a probe on a planet, return). Nevertheless, I finished every side quest I could find, so I guess it's safe to say the game was pretty addicting. I still think that ME1 was the best in the series, but the Gears of War -style action, improved customization options, interesting story about the battle against Reapers, and characters I really liked and grew into, still made the game certainly worth playing. I would definitely say this was a really good game and a really good series. Feb 18th: Scribblenauts Unlimited
. This was a fun puzzle game. Most of the puzzles were stupid easy, sometimes repetitive too, but with a bit of imagination they could be made more interesting (for example: a grandma forgot to put a birthday gift in the box - I was tasked to come up with the gift. Some would conjure a toy; I conjured a spider that scared the shit out of the birthday girl). The game also wasn't very picky about solutions; once I was tasked to embellish an ancient city - I tried to conjure a Statue Of Liberty, but the game didn't recognize the words and instead suggested, among others, a "statued liberal" which worked just as fine. The game wasn't very long, but because of the mildly repetitive nature that's probably not a bad thing. I plowed through the game very quickly, but I would definitely say the game would work best in very small doses. I've played the earlier DS titles a bit, and the mission structure was a lot more interesting here (help people instead of just finding a way to the open Starite). Good game, especially for kids to help them develop their imagination. Feb 18th: Puzzle Agent 2
. Damn, I've played a lot of puzzle games lately. The story in the game was pretty crappy, but that's alright, because I was in it only for the individual puzzles alone anyway. And it's a good thing I was, because the second game did a really poor job of reminding me what had happened in the storyline in the previous game. That's really bad, because the second game isn't just a sequel, in the traditional sense of the word; it continues directly from where the first game ended. I gotta say though: although I played the second game only for the puzzles, I think they were a lot better and more varied in the first game. This one had too many boring space-themed puzzles, and math puzzles (I HATE those!), and some puzzles were ridiculously easy, whereas some were borderline impossible without external help or the use of in-game hints (the Monosaki puzzles were the worst: the first one expects me to remember the first nine digits of Pi, while the other one....let's just say it's ridiculous. I think no-one could solve it without an open view to a calendar at all times and a sudden thought of "what if"). I also hated that there were a few puzzles, that could be completed only later on in the game, and I even experienced a glitch during these, twice: I went back to look at the puzzle instructions when suddenly a cutscene would start playing in the background, but the instruction screen was blocking the cutscene. One more thing: the game has bonus puzzles after you've completed the game. Yeah, a whole two more puzzles. Which have an identical pattern to them. The first one had at least a dozen extra puzzles. Final verdict: when compared to the first game, this one failed hard on every level. The music was pretty nice though, especially in the space scene with the floating gnome people.
The March list is here