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Quantum Break (Xbox One)

An impressive showcase of the power of the Xbone, and a good game! The gameplay is top notch, and the shooting is sound. Unlike most third person shooters, it discourages taking cover, and rewards running around, using your superpowers. Enemies are smart, and will seek you out if you sit too long behind cover, and your cover can often be destroyed. The shootouts are spectacular. You have time blast, time shield, time sprint, and time dodge at your disposal. Mix it up, and wreak havoc!

The technology is very impressive. It is one of the best-looking games I've seen on the Xbone. The best showcase are the scenes where time is frozen, and you walk through it, while people stand there frozen in the moment. At other times, these scenes are more action-packed, with lots of funky graphics on screen.

The TV-series won't win any awards (they show episodes of a series based on the game inbetween acts). It's cheesy, and the actors aren't the best. It's not terrible, I managed to watch it, but I've seen better :P At least it has Littlefinger from GoT! The story is interesting though, and the cutscenes are quite nice, often showing the elements that make the game so technologically impressive. It certainly is a unique game, and one of the best exclusives I've played on the Xbone.

CMOT70: The minute Samantha said her first line in GoW3 I knew it was Claudia Black...a unique voice. I think I could maybe even tolerate being nagged all my life by a woman, if she had a voice like that. She's also been in a few Australian Soap TV series as well. But I wouldn't recommend anyone actually watch Australian Soaps though.
The Norwegian voice-acting in Dreamfall: The Longest Journey was full of Norwegian soap-actors. It was cheesy, but I kept it on, for the laughs. Of course, there are a some big actors and comedians in there as well, but it still sounds slightly out of place in a game like this. I was disappointed at the lack of Norwegian voice-acting in Dreamfall Chapters. Good game though.
andysheets1975: As I recall the first game maybe pushes that feeling a bit harder, probably because it was the first game and they felt like they had to really lay it on thick to stand apart from the crowd. By the time you get to the third game, things feel more relaxed. It's still gritty and bad things can happen to nice people, but you also get a variety of textures. There's even some outright comedy.
Ah well, guess maybe I'll get to it in a decade or so, knowing how I go about these things.
Currently, to refer more directly to the topic of this thread, haven't even loaded up a game in three months :/
<span class="bold">The Legend of Kyrandia: Book One</span> (played on ScummVM v1.6.0)

I'll admit it: I've only completed this game because I wanted to play Hand of Fate so badly, and it only seemed right to play the first book before.

For starters I was gladly surprised by how good it looked and sounded, considering its age. For some reason I was expecting the graphics to be way cruder and the music to be little more than annoying beeps, but they are actually very good and comparable to the ones in the second part of the trilogy (which came out only one year later).

Gameplay-wise, I was fully aware of what I was getting into: the cheap deaths, the trial an error puzzles with barely any hints, the limited inventory space (only made worse by the existence of many completely useless objects throughout the game), or the infamous dark labyrinth. That's why I faced this adventure with a walkthrough up my sleeve, and indeed I had to consult it several times. But all things considered, I think I can forgive Westwood Studios for most of their design flaws... Well, most of them except for allowing the player to reach a dead-end state where the game is no longer beatable. If at least it let you know you had screwed up, you would avoid wasting your time wondering what to do and you could just load a previous saved game and try to fix the situation, but no... To me this is a cardinal sin in game design, probably the most serious one.

Fortunately it seems like they learned their lesson and the following games in the series were free from these kind of bad design choices. I'm looking forward to play Book Two next.

PS: As noted above, I played the game on Linux with ScummVM v1.6.0 after extracting the installer's contents with innoextract. Everything worked flawlessly, but only after overcoming an unexpected problem: this is probably no news to anybody, but the Kyrandia games require a configuration file (kyra.dat) in order to work. Said file can be downloaded from the ScummVM wiki, but beware! Each ScummVM release comes with its own version of the file, so if you (like myself) are not using the latest ScummVM version, you must look for it on GitHub: here you can find the file corresponding to the latest release. To get the one you need all you have to do is click on the 'branch' dropdown menu and select the one that corresponds to your ScummVM version.

My list of finished games in 2016
Post edited August 05, 2016 by muntdefems
muntdefems: Fortunately it seems like they learned their lesson and the following games in the series were free from these kind of bad design choices.
Are you absolutely sure about that? It's a long time ago, but from what I remember Book 2 improved, but Book 3 went back to it's old ways...trial and error puzzle with no idea or indication of whether you're doing the wrong thing or just simply need to persevere. Like you said, just keep a walkthrough on standby. I still liked them.
muntdefems: Fortunately it seems like they learned their lesson and the following games in the series were free from these kind of bad design choices.
CMOT70: Are you absolutely sure about that? It's a long time ago, but from what I remember Book 2 improved, but Book 3 went back to it's old ways...trial and error puzzle with no idea or indication of whether you're doing the wrong thing or just simply need to persevere. Like you said, just keep a walkthrough on standby. I still liked them.
Well... I was mainly thinking about the 'state of no return' issue, which I'm quite confident is not there in Book Two nor in Book Three.

About trial and error puzzles, yeah, now that you mention I remember reading a review on Book Three complaining about that. :\
A couple of WWII games revolving around the occult...

Return to Castle Wolfenstein - I played lots of Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory years ago, but had never played this game, so it was interesting in that regard. There's no real relation between the two games, apart from the moniker. One of the things that most surprised about the game was how empty it felt most of the time. There's a fair number of expansive levels, but there's little to fill those spaces. It's not a terribly long game, and it contains a good number of interesting locations. The story is played straight, with little humor, and is ultimately forgettable.

Bloodrayne - Compared to RTCW, this game is more enjoyable though I found playing it in short bursts was best. There's little evolution to the gameplay and Rayne's combat options as the game progresses, so it can lead to levels feeling similar. My favorite part of the game was the opening act, set in the Louisiana bayou - not a location often featured in games. Overall, it's an enjoyable hack-and-slash game.
Brutal Legend. I had started a replay of this one a while back, got distracted with other stuff, but I finally got back to it and finished it this evening. It's a game that has particular faults, such as repetitive side missions and a nagging sense that the campaign was chopped down a good deal, but I enjoy playing it because the hack-and-slash gameplay holds my attention, it's beautiful, and of course it has a godly soundtrack.
Majesty Gold

I still can't believe I managed to finish this one :P The first time I attempted a playthrough I gave up because of the difficulty of some of the later levels. Turns out that, apart from about 3 levels, it really isn't that bad if you can get a strong economy going early enough.
Overall it's an amazingly fun fantasy "rts" that is incredibly refreshing to play. Perhaps because, apart from the sequel, no other game (as far as I am aware) has mechanics like it : you don't control units/heroes directly, e.g., if you want a monster killed you place a price on its head. The larger the price, the more willing the heroes living in your town are to kill it. And it's not just about killing the monster. You also want heroes to become rich so that they can buy health potions, better weapons and armour, enchantments, magic rings etc..
When you are not busy placing bounties on vampires hiding around at haunted castles, your focus is in your town, making sure that it has everything your heroes need: inns, blacksmiths, marketplaces, various guilds, wizard towers to enchant weapons and train powerful wizards, good ol watch towers to guard key points, and more. The game has aged very well I feel, and I'd recommend it to anyone who likes rts but is looking for a different spin on the genre.
Post edited August 07, 2016 by Matewis
Just want to say thanks to all the people posting their thoughts in this thread. There have been some excellent reviews and I've found it a great way to identifying games that I might enjoy playing.

The good:
Beautiful and almost artistic cutscenes.
Excellent level design.
A few unique missions.
The music.

The bad:
The AI is bipolar. Either they shoot the millisecond you rear your pixelated head, or they dance in front of your gun for seconds before showing the slightest interest in you.
Several graphical glitches. Like enemies facing and shooting the wrong way but still hitting you.
Enemies will never stop repeating the same phrases over and over and over and over .....

The ugly:
Not a whole a lot of variety in objectives, its all about shooting in the end.
The story is cliche. Not bad, but cliche.
The difficulty. The good difficulty is almost insultingly easy. The bad difficulty tends to be unfair at times, but nothing too bad. I never even tried the ugly difficulty.


Despite a few hick ups along the way I had a lot of fun with this game. Give it a shot and let the Marshal walk into the sunset.
Post edited August 07, 2016 by benmar
And I have two games to throw in.
+Retro City Rampage (Linux)
One of the best nostalgia-based games I could ask for. References to the max. Gameplay that doesn't disappoint. Mockery of the video game industry. Two main characters I like. It's best played by yourself to learn it.

+Symphony of the Origin
An RPG for Android. While the gameplay isn't exactly challenging mooks-wise (but can be once you step into a boss), the story is quite nice if still with a rough edge, along with a character dynamic I liked. It wasn't the best, it wasn't Final Fantasy V, but it was still worthy for a play. Any battle music in the game is also worthy of a mention.

List of finished games this year here.
Post edited August 09, 2016 by PookaMustard
I am sooo bad at finishing games...
I typically like games that don't have ending for about same reason.

hmm I beat ... planescape torment... chrono trigger... couple final fantasys and zelda link to past..

.. ya...
Post edited August 09, 2016 by Regals
Welp, here comes the VNs.
Sakura Beach 2 (Linux)
I know it's only available on Steam, but I might be wrong. I saved myself the trouble and uploaded it to my Dropbox as soon as I downloaded it from Steam so I can bypass Steam, and it does work DRM-free (Windows and Linux). Basically, you're the protagonist from Sakura Beach. In the first game, you had to juggle your encounters with your two childhood friends (who happen to be some weird girls in a sense) and now, in SB2, you'll have to deal with THREE. Some messages about love are thrown your way along with what means to enjoy life and explore it, etc. And of course, it's a Sakura VN, so by design it has sexual encounters. Nope, you don't see any 'naughty bits' or end up doing it, so don't bother if you were looking for that. Basically, a game for someone driven by curiosity, like me.

Game or not is of course debatable, but it's a visual novel, so here's a start. Unlike Sakura Beach, there are too many choices to count. Oftentimes they don't matter due to the quirks of the characters.

I have played other games, you know?
Ben there, Dan that!
A short but well made point and click adventure game. The gameplay is classic, the graphics are simple but charming and fit the feel of the game perfectly. The music is surprisingly good and the crude British humor just works. It's not too long or too challenging and its premise will probably be just a tad weird for some, but I do recommend it. For a short freeware game that was originally supposed to be just advertisement for another game, its surprisingly well made.

Time Gentlemen, Please!
Bigger, better, funnier. The jokes are cruder, the story is more interesting, the situations our heroes get into are nothing but ridiculous. The puzzles are tougher and more interesting and the world seems to have had a lot of thought put into it. The graphics and music are just as charming as in the first game.
On the downside, at times it feels like they were trying a bit too hard to come up with some of the jokes and a few build ups to jokes last just a tad too long. Also it seems to me that there are a lot of pauses in the game. Pauses in dialogues, before and after performing actions and so on. And without spoiling the ending, the way the time traveling mess gets resolved is nothing but cheap. That again, that may had been the joke.
But those are really just nitpicks. It's a good game. I eagerly await the third game in the series: Revenge of the balloon-headed Mexican.
Post edited August 09, 2016 by benmar
benmar: I eagerly await the third game in the series: Revenge of the balloon-headed Mexican.
Are you sure that one is still in the works? I hadn't heard about it yet and got excited for a moment, but googling the title I found articles suggesting it was shelved in 2011 already ...