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Wasteland 2: Director's Cut

So I played the original version late in 2014 and loved it (one of the few games I replayed immediately upon completion). This one is upgraded with engine and game improvements and better balancing to the weapons and gear, which, for the most part, works out quite well. While sniper rifles and assualt rifles are still king, IMO, it's now possible to build a very viable melee character as well as use other types of firearms. So I built a 4 member squad with a blade specialist, 2 assualt rifle specialists and a sniper. Ended up taking Vulture's Cry, Pizepi Joren, and Takayuki for pretty much the whole game to fill out the seven-member team.

Energy weapons now do very poor damage against non-conductive targets (targets that are not wearing heavy armor). There are perks* that help this, but they still aren't a good choice against light armor. Which is a good change overall, IMO. Makes you change things up a bit in some of the combat scenarios.

*The devs also introduced 'perks' and 'quirks', very similar to what you get in Fallout. You gain a perk every 4 levels, while you can choose a quirk only at character creation. Quirks have a positive and negative aspect, while perks do not (I chose the 'Asshole' quirk for one of my Rangers, which grants you the full 10 ranks in Hard Ass - with no need to spend skill points - but prevents your team from ever using Kiss Ass or Smart Ass). Many perks are focused on weapon specializations, giving you bonuses in your weapon line. Some are dependent on how many skill points you invested in the weapon as well as/or being dependent on having a previous perk selected. Pretty standard stuff.

Unfortunately, the perks and quirks - as is the case in most games that have this feature - suffer from some of them being obviously far superior to others. Some of the weapon lines also only have a couple perks associated with them, while others have a good handful. In one sense this is good, as it gives you a number of benefits if you seriously focus on that weapon. In another sense it's not so great since it means you'll have a hard time if you want to specialize in a close up weapon and a long range (or an energy weapon and a regular type). For the most part, though, the perks and quirks are a great addition to the game.

The major bugs seem to have been resolved (I found no issues in any of the quests I took on), but there were a couple weird glitches that were minor annoyances. A couple examples: I couldn't interact with one of the merchants in Hollywood after completing a quest related to him - this is not intended behavior. Sometimes the text in the character display would garble so your skills would overlap and be unreadable. Closing and opening or a save and reload would fix it.

One minor complaint I have (and I had it with the original as well) is with the logbook (journal). While it does a decent job of updating your quests and giving you a bit of direction on what to do next, there are some quests where the major players move to a different location and you have to meet up with them later. The logbook didn't seem to want to let you know where they moved to, and there didn't seem to be any in-game hints/indications where they went. Not a major issue, but it can be an annoyance a few times.

Not much else to say, as it's still basically the same game as the original. So I still give it a big thumbs up. At some point, I'll go through it again, maybe with a team of 4 on Supreme Jerk difficulty.

Full List
<span class="bold">Agatha Christie - The ABC Murders</span>

Got it as part of last Weekend's Promo for pretty cheap, and I'm glad I did as I don't think it's really worth its full price. Why? Let's see...

First, the good things:
- The art is pretty and very detailed, especially the backgrounds and settings
- The story is quite intriguing and captivating (particularly if, like me, you didn't know it beforehand)
- The music serves its purpose perfectly and it's a good accompaniment to the story
- The main characters are funny and well fleshed out. I've never read a Poirot novel and I've only watched a couple of episodes of the TV series with David Suchet, but I think the devs did a very good job at portraying them: Poirot's smugness and narcissism, his comical but almost passive-aggressive relationship with Hastings...
- The deduction mechanic (Poirot's brain/grey cells) feels fresh and original (even though sometimes the question to answer is too ambiguous and you basically have to guess what the devs were thinking)

So far, so good. It's got almost everything one can desire in an adventure game: a gripping story with some well drawn characters, pretty graphics and good music, as well as some interesting mechanics. What does it wrong, then?

- Gameplay is extremely railroaded. There's no way you can miss a clue or a deduction as you are literally forced by the game to gather and discover them. Otherwise, you cannot advance the story.
- Overabundance of in-game pop-up indications, goal updates, extras unlockings, and trophy achievements. They happen in such numbers and so often, that you risk getting distracted and missing part of some dialogue or exposition.
- In almost every location there's an 'unlock-the-box' type of mini-game. They feel a little disconnected with the rest of the game, and they can alienate anyone not into this type of games. I personally didn't mind them, and I even enjoyed them to some extent... except when one of them (the gramophone) was bugged and I couldn't get the auto-shifting camera to look at the interior of the drawer that contained the clue I needed to procede. Finally I could progress by randomly clicking until I got the exact spot I was supposed to click from another camera perspective.
- Despite the marketing blurbs, there doesn't seem to be much choice left to the player in this game. Unless the way Poirot conducts his interrogations has any real impact on future events in the story (which I don't really think), I only remember having a choice near the end of the game. I've read that there are different endings, so I guess they depend on what you choose there.

In conclusion, probably not worth the full asking price if you expect a point'n'click adventure in the traditional sense (except perhaps if you're a die-hard fan of Agatha Christie's work). But if you know what you're getting into and you can get it at a good discount, then I could sincerely recommend it.

My list of finished games in 2016
Post edited September 06, 2016 by muntdefems

A fun shooter that''s more about stealth and careful approaches than run and gun. Though the characters are quite thin, they don't have a well-thought out personality, the storyline is quite engaging with a plot that leaves you wonder for a long time what's going on this North-Korean Island you find yourself fighting as a Sci-Fi American marine. The last few chapters, when you found out what the mystery is about, are quite epic in their other-worldliness.

Gameplay wise, the game mostly revolves around the use of your 'nanosuit', a special bionic combat-gear that surrounds your body and gives you almost supernatural abilities. Alas in practice the one most useful is stealth, a function making you completely invisible but for the shadow you cast in sunlight. It lasts for only as long as the suit can keep it's energy up and I end up switching constantly between stealth mode to crawl around without being seen and armour mode to recharge the energy of the suit, with the sprint and strength mode only useful in a few very specific situations.

All in all, it was a fun experience but as I'm not a very skilled gamer, the game took me 38 hours to finish whereas according to it should be finishable in 9,5 hours.

The answer to 'but can it run Crysis' is yes for my HD 6670, that I replaced last week for an RX 460 and now I can probably answer yes to the questions of 'but can it run Crysis 2/3'. But I'll play some other games first, for variety.
Divinity Original Sin - Enhanced Edition (around 68h spend on it + some idling)

Best cRPG I ever played for years, no questions.
I never liked Divinity series, played hour or two and dropped forever every one of them (exception - Divinity2 DKS till I got my own tower). Don't know what caused it. Maybe the way Larian deal with fantasy theme?

First towm - Cyreal - is perfect on paper but can confuse people, which lead to abandoning the game. I dealt with it, and got so much power I returned to previous games (Divine, Beyond and Dragon Knight Saga) to finish them. Something marvelous.

Good artstyle, it's like the caricatural kind but withough weird body proportions and similair.

Best game for cleptomaniacs (aka average RPG players), just drop backpack/chest/barrel on the ground, drop items that belong to others and put it back to your inventory. Voila, no more financial issues.

I really like soundtrack, there is even one particullary cool track from Beyond Divinity (it's called "Sacred Cult", not sure about it name in D:OS). Unfortunately epic encounters (with bosses and large battles in general) have only one track, which sounds great, but does not loop! Which leave second half of the battle in complete silence. Awkward.

Complete freedom in character developement is both good and bad. Good if you get right skills (even if you put single point in some schools) but can turn bad if you made bad choices, esencially ruining it. There is place where you can respec it but it cost you skills and spells, painful to put it mildy.

People don't like Beyond Divinity for terrible voiceacting but for me - DivOS have worse.

Last time I played games more than once was before Steam+GOG, this game is the first exception. I want to experience this game again.
This time in classic version (not EE) for sweet Glass Cannon (-HP, +AP) and Lone Wolf (+AP +HP) that was blocked in EE.
J.U.L.I.A. Among the Stars

Wow, what a nice little game. Not a genre I play much, as usually I don't find this type of game much fun. But I grabbed this one on a whim in a sale and what a pleasant surprise. Visually, the game itself is very nice and I like the way they unfolded the story. Puzzles were, for the most part, very good, if not terribly difficult. That being said, I did have to look up a hint for one of them. The story itself wasn't bad, although one aspect, which I think was intended to be surprising, was easy to see coming.

I've not actually completed the DLC, but it appears to be just puzzles with a little bit of backstory. But I'll probably finish that up in the next couple days.

Anyway, yeah, good game, and recommended. Well worth the price I paid.

Full List
Wizardry III: Legacy of Llylgamyn

I had a desire one day to play the original Wizardry trilogy; I am now two thirds done. I'm playing the Japanese SNES port; for some reason, they renumbered the games, so that LoL was identified as Wizardry II; thus I've played them out of order. It hardly matters; these games have basically no plot, and are mechnically identical.

The SNES version is clearly the superior version graphically. Mechanically, I believe that it's mostly updated to play like Wizardry V, when some innovation was beginning to creep in. Comparing my playthough to the CRPG Addicts, I suspect that those changes tended to make the game easier; for example, there's a sneak attack mechanism imported in from Wizardry V that allows a back-row thief to not be totally useless in combat. There are some mechanisms working the other way (bishops can become cursed trying to identify cursed items, for example). In some ways, I suppose it's odd that I'm choosing to experience such a major part of CRPG history as a console port, but my introduction to Wizardry as a kid was on a console, and I'm not inclined to intentionally play a worse version of a game for "authenticity." There is one way, unfortunately, where the SNES version is clearly worse--I enjoy riddles, and the riddles in the original were removed. I don't know why; the SNES version of Wizardry V includes at least one riddle, so it's not really a console thing.

So how does it stack up to Wizardry 1? Well, it's mechanically identical; if the Wizardry games were released today, 2 and 3 would be expansion packs rather than new games. There are only six levels, and there's something to do on each level, fixing my major complaint about the first game, which was that it's huge but pointless. It's significantly harder, in a sense--the infamous Temple of Fung is especially maddening, and I limped back to town on the verge of total extermination on several occasions--but lacking the hideous, RNG-dependent boss fights of the first game, I managed to conquer it with my first party. And a good thing, because unlike the first game, there's really no good way to grind up new characters. The main gimick of the game--that you can only go to certain floors if your entire party is some combination of neutral and a certain alignment (2 and 5 good, 3 and 5 evil) is unfortunately just annoying. It took over an hour to convert my evil party to good, and how did any of that improve the game? Early Wizardry, like the early Might and Magic, never really managed to do anything interesting with character alignment.

In conclusion, benefits from being more compact and from there being more things to do, but suffers from an irritating gimick. I'm not sure which I'd say is "better."
Dragon Age Inquisition

Finished a 155 hour playthrough of the GOTY edition and enjoyed it for the most part. For better or for worse DAI feels like an MMO with fetch-quests, gathering shit, kill x and y etc. The combat is simplistic but it works. The worst part is that you can have quite a few different skills (especially as a mage) but you only have 8 hotkeys so if you have more than 8 skills well, then you just can't use them. The story and characters are decent but nowhere near the greats from Booware in the past so no new Minsc, Bastila or Jon Irenicus.

The game is gorgeous and it nails that sense of wonder and exploration that RPG's can give you. The game is vibrant with color and the areas are big and diverse in terms of setting. All in all as my playtime should indicate I did enjoy the game but I doubt I will ever replay it again. Bioware of today is not the same company we enjoyed 15 years ago. Their writing has taken a hit and their desire to focus on inclusion/diversity hurts their narratives. But overall if you get the chance then do pick up the GOTY edition that comes with all DLC's.
Blue Estate (PS4)

This game is an on-rails shooter with a lot of humour.

On the PS4 it uses the controller’s motion sensors to aim, which I found quite fun and intuitive, although I had to constantly recenter it between every wave. I enjoyed the story, jokes, and the running commentary, which was the primary attraction of the game for me. On the negative side, I found that the last mission had a big difficulty spike compared to the rest of the game. It’s a short game, and can be completed in several hours.

Overall I’d recommend it if you can get it for cheap and you're looking for some mindless fun. It has a free demo (which is very representative of the entire game) in the PlayStation Store so you can try before you buy :).
jepsen1977: so if you have more than 8 skills well, then you just can't use them.
You can swap them in and out, although it still means that there are some you can't use at any given time. However, I found there were only about 5 or 6 (if that) that I used on a regular basis anyway.

jepsen1977: The game is gorgeous and it nails that sense of wonder and exploration that RPG's can give you. The game is vibrant with color and the areas are big and diverse in terms of setting. All in all as my playtime should indicate I did enjoy the game but I doubt I will ever replay it again. Bioware of today is not the same company we enjoyed 15 years ago. Their writing has taken a hit and their desire to focus on inclusion/diversity hurts their narratives. But overall if you get the chance then do pick up the GOTY edition that comes with all DLC's.
Yep, although I thought Inquisition was orders of magnitude better than DA2, BioWare isn't what it was. Their games used to be on my Instabuy list. Now they're on my "Wait for the full package at a huge discount" list. Shame, but it's the way of things, I guess.
Kairobotica (Android)

Let's get this out of the way, if you played one Kairosoft then you played them all since the mechanics are always the same (with some small differences here and there) but i just love their games, it's the perfect casual management game on the go, this isn't my favourite of them but it lasted a good amount of hours and it was worth the price of admission (to be fair i've recieved $20 from amazon, i've spent it all in 3 kairosoft games and The Room 3).

Journey (PS4)

I'm not one of those that like artsy/pretentious games, no, i hate them since they're boring, they lack the gameplay to make things interesting. But this game... wow. The name is perfect, it's trully a journey, there's no voices, somewhat confusing story and simple mechanics but it's really beautiful, the game design is perfect since you know where to go and what to do without the game really telling you that (well, it kind of points out with the camera but it's just that) and in my opinion, what makes the game unique is the coop, some random person appears and there isn't any way to comunicate with them besides the pings that are used to activate/recharge stuff and yet you create this bound with that person(s), you wait for them (and vice versa), you point out where is the hidden stuff, you feel bad when they get behind and so on.

It's weird, the game is incredibly short, like 1~2 hours and i don't feel like going back to get the hidden secrets, it's one of those experiences that i only want to enjoy once and keep it as it is in my memory. Great game.

Ratchet and Clank (PS4)

Another awesome game, i've purchased a while back during a sale but the game is already too cheap for the content & quality that has (if i'm not mistaken, it was released for 40€), really beautiful (and i would even dare to say Toy Story graphics), great gameplay, great exploration, great voice acting, etc.
The game is really good, i can't point out anything bad, it even has a *new game + (challenge mode) where you can pass the game again in a higher difficulty but you keep everything that you unlocked, so, besides getting another opportunity to upgrade all weapons you even unlock new weapon skins that actually change the weapons.

*I won't replay the game for a while, i'll save this for when i get in the mood of playing a plataform game again (a scarce genre) and/or forgot most of the stuff about the game.
Post edited September 09, 2016 by Cyraxpt
Huh, I guess my Nightmares from the Deep: Cursed Heart was too negative because gogbear ate it. :)

Long story short, it's not a great hidden object game. Probably not even a good one.

Campy, with bad voice active and animation, but ultimately not a terrible game if you like the genre. C+

The bonus content borders on terrible though. Skip that.
<span class="bold">Regency Solitaire</span>

This is the only game being added to the recent Humble Indie Bundle 17 in its second week that I had not already completed so, considering that I'm a sucker for casual-ish puzzle games, it's no wonder I started playing it immediately.

Well, not immediately as at least the Linux version had some bug that prevented the game from starting, so I had to wait until a new version was uploaded a couple of days later[*]. But since then there hasn't been a single night in which I didn't play at least a couple of hands before going to bed. Yeah, I found it quite addicting.

This addiction had nothing to do with the story and setting of the game, though. I'm probably not the best to judge as I'm not at all interested in the English Regency era and I don't like the novels of Jane Austen, but I found the story very cheesy and tame. Not to mention the main female protagonist Bella, who is supposed to be the epitome of beauty and determination, but the way she's drawn makes her look like a plain and dim girl. This little complaint notwithstanding, I quite liked the rest of the art and the music in this game. Pity that the cutscenes between levels lack any kind of animation but, considering that Grey Alien Games is literally a family studio, it's entirely forgivable.

Instead of the story, what grabbed me was the gameplay. If you've played other solitaire games you probably know what to expect, but Regency Solitaire still manages to keep things fresh with a bunch of mechanics and elements added on top of the usual 'build up or down in sequence' rule. Most of them involve different types of "locked" cards, and in order to unlock them the player either needs to find a "key" card, or to collect a certain number of royal (Jack, Queen, or King) cards, or to collect them twice.

In the first levels, the hands are frankly easy and they pose no real challenge. But the more you progress, it becomes increasingly difficult to score stars in them. And that's important, because you need to achieve some goals in order to advance to the next level (e.g. collect such number of stars during the 10 hands in the level, or achieve a combo of N consecutive collected cards). Well, that wasn't actually true: even if you don't fulfill the required goals you can still continue playing the next level, but my ego wouldn't allow me to be patronized like that so I forced myself to always meet the requirements or else start the level again.

Luckily, there a bunch of aids at your disposal: Joker and Wild Cards, which you can play in order to extend a promising combo when you've run out of options, and up to three purchasable powers, which let you remove or shuffle cards from the tableau. At first you can easily live without them, but later on you'll certainly rely on them to complete the most difficult hands and level goals.

It's worth noting that I completed this in its 'Normal' difficulty mode, and still I had some troubles in the later stages of the game (for instance, I had to repeat several hands in order to remove all the cards and get 3 stars). Thus I'm afraid the 'Hard' mode would result in excessive frustration, so I decided to call it a day and keep a good memory of it.

[*] And then, I still encountered a strange bug by which some cards' faces weren't showing properly. I eventually discovered the affected card was invariably the number 2 (but not all "2" cards were bugged, some of them were rendered correctly). Anyway, after a while the bug went away and never appeared again, without the need of a new patch or version of the game. Strange indeed...

My list of finished games in 2016
include me

Black Ops 3
Broken Sword 5
Tales From the Borderlands
Metal Gear Solid 5
Rise of the Tomb Raider
Halo: CE
Talos Principle
Grim Fandango: Remastered
Ori and the Blind Forest
Condemned Criminal Origins
Far Cry Primal
Halo 2
King's Quest (chapters 1-3)
Halo 3
Halo 4
Condemned 2: Bloodshot
Ratchet & Clank (2016)
Dead Island
Shadow Complex: Remastered
Uncharted 4
Lego: Marvel's Avengers
Warcraft 3 + The Frozen Throne
Mirror's Edge
Mirror's Edge Catalyst
Hotline Miami
Dark Souls 3
Duke Nukem 3D: Atomic Edition
Stardew Valley
Trine 3
Halo 5
Red Alert 3
Resident Evil: Remake
Resident Evil Zero
Fester Mudd
Quantum Break
To The Moon
Life is Strange 9.0/10
Walking Dead Michonne
Three Fourths Home
No Man's Sky
Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Dreamfall Chapters
A Boy and his Blob
The Vanishing of Ethan Carter
Gears of War: Remastered
The Witness 9.5/10
Sunset Overdrive

I will be slowly adding in some saved reviews i have in the coming weeks/months so i don't flood this thread :)
Post edited September 29, 2016 by mkaliaz
Life is Strange

Life is Strange is a modern point and click adventure game similar to walking dead or heavy rain. Game was pretty fantastic. It was a lot longer than a typical telltale game. Main story is you are this chick who goes to an art school. She discovers she has the power to rewind time. For most of the game, you only rewind small sections of recent events. Later in the game you do a few bigger time jumps where you can really mess things up.

Much of the plot seemed very similar to THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT movie. It does have differences though and that was such a good story, i don't mind a different retelling of it. The setting was interesting on the Oregon coast. I love this part of the country but rarely see it in games.

Graphics are not impressive to be honest but doesn't hurt the game. Didn’t care much for the indie music they heavily showcased but there were some nice instrumental sections. Game gives you a decent amount of choices that have significant impacts on the story. Characters can live or die depending on what you do and those events persist through every episode.

There wasn't much gameplay elements but there were a few decent puzzles (logical or time manipulation stuff / nothing with inventory). Game is all about the story and it really succeeds there. Finally, this game had a big emotional impact on me – I haven’t gotten emotional over game/movie in many years but actually shed a tear or two on this one. I give it a 9/10 for fans of these types of games (like me).

My full list
Post edited September 10, 2016 by mkaliaz
Demons Souls (PS3

The Spiritual precursor to Dark Souls, you see it on sale and think "This game is never mentioned in top 10 hardest games unlike the sequel, I'm sure this would an easier version of Dark Souls which would prepare me in case I ever chose to play it" and so you get it for a bargain, and once you make your way through the tutorial before remembering all those top 10 lists only did 1 game per franchise, and after only just managing to beat the grunts, you get 1 shot by a boss. You then realise some King woke up this old demon whose turned everyone demonic through some evil fog and you need to kill the 5 archdemons in order to confront the king and lull the demon back to sleep. You then step through to the first level and start your adventure, during this time you: get ambushed repeatedly, accidentally fall down pits while trying to avoid attacks, get flattened by a boulder, roasted alive by a dragon, rescue some fancy guy, get overwhelmed by slugs with shields, rescue the fancy guy again, roll a lot, fumble around in a dark cave, exploded by fireballs, get impaled in the head with a pickaxe, run after tiny lizards for stones, fall down a deep hole, skilfully fall down the same hole but not dying this time, repeatedly hit rubble to break it, get punched in the face by a huge dragon, stumble around through a prison, get strangled by a octopus headed guard, get abducted by gargoyles, free a guy who seems nice, stumble around a swamp full of tentacles, try to avoid laughing at the guy in the huge yellow hat, struggle to hit skeletons who lost the ability to walk and roll everywhere, trade shinies for souls, get shot at by giant flying sting rays, get kicked down a hole by some douchebag, get backstabbed by an invisible girl, shoot a blind guy in the face repeatedly, hide from the stingray invasion, fall through roof's into dark ravines, trek through poisonous swamps, shoot a giant from far away thinking its a normal sized enemy and then get crushed by his club as you realise your mistake, get swarmed by insects, feel guilty, rescue the fancy guy yet again, kill all your friends for a useless ring, struggle against a boss for 3 hours, spend ages grinding against the same enemies for stones so you can upgrade all your equipment, finally become good at the game, finish the game, proclaim yourself a god of video gaming, laugh at all your friends who havn't beaten the game, decide to go for platinum trophy, realise that you'd need to go through the game 3 more times with difficulty increasing each time, give up and go back to the pile of games that's been building up while you kept dying.