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Star Vikings

It's a nice puzzle game. Quite casual, but you still have to use your brain to not do some stupid moves that could accidently kill your characters. In the end when you have all five party slots unlocked and your vikings upgraded to highest level things get a little too easy though. In the last world I able to get through the levels without losing health at all most of the time.

Would be nice if there was a little more variety in opponents, but all in all it was ok. Game was over before it got boring.

There are some bonus levels left, I think I will play them before I finally delete the game.

Complete list of finished games in 2016
Chocolate Castle

At first I thought it would be an easy puzzle game and I was a little upset, because the game didn't give a hint, if you found the perfect solution for a level (which would have been the only challenge in the easy levels).

But after a while (in the middle of the game) I didn't care for the perfect solution any longer and was happy that I've found one at all. And some of the hard levels really were brutally hard and required lots of planning and thinking (and also a lot of tries). Three levels were even too hard for me and I had to look up the solution.

Graphics and music (not the most important thing in a puzzle game) are very basic and simple, but somehow also charming.

If you like puzzle games, you should give this one a try.

Complete list of finished games in 2016
Unhack: Destruction

A prequel and standalone DLC to the game Unhack. It's very short (took me 20-30 minutes on hard) and consists of only three missions, but it tells you something about the past of the characters (especially A2) and fills some story holes of the main game.

Well spent 99 cents when you liked Unhack.

Complete list of finished games in 2016
I've finished the following over the past two months.

Freespace 2 - An excellent follow-up to the first Freespace game. It doesn't change the formula too drastically, but the addition of the beam cannons for capital ships make some visually stunning and intense dogfights. The combat is satisfying, and the selection of weapons and ships make this one an excellent choice to play.

Rise of the Tomb Raider - I haven't played the first of the reboot series, but this one doesn't entice me to do so. This game is heavily soaked in modern design, with its open world, collectibles, and useless side missions. The story is dull, and far too serious - there's few, if any, moments of levity. But that's to be expected, when Lara Croft is a murderous psychopath, but this never shows up in the cutscenes. Overall, I wouldn't recommend it.

Duke Nukem: Manhattan Project - Having played and enjoyed the original 2 Duke platformers, this one was a decent continuation of that aspect of the series. There's nothing too special about this game, but it's enjoyable if you're a fan of Duke.

Ittle Dew - A solid puzzler that can be completed in a few hours. The tone is funny, and the animation of the characters and enemies is excellent. Also, the final boss has checkpoints between its stages, which is much appreciated.

Peggle - A good puzzle game to play when listening to podcasts or the like. Not much else to say about this one.

Outlaws + A Handful of Missions - A solid 90s shooter; the atmosphere is excellent, which is helped by the excellent music.

Costume Quest - I enjoyed this one, it's quite charming (not as charming as Driftmoon though). A good game to play in the Halloween season, that's not in the horror genre.

Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties - The second expansion for AOEIII, it doesn't introduce any radical new mechanics. The campaigns (3 of this time, split among the Japanese, Chinese, and Indian civilizations) are more of the same, but it's enjoyable to go through the town and military building.
King's Quest

(I played the 1987 DOS version via ScummVM)

Wow, what a fun little game! I'd never played it before but I really enjoyed it a lot. I liked the text parser. The art is a bit crude, but it really reminded me a lot of those early text adventure games and I could really appreciate how revolutionary this game must have been compared to them.

The rumoured difficulty of this game is highly overstated, I had no major problems because I followed the mantra "Save, save often" and because there are actually multiple ways of accomplishing your goals.

The game can be completed in a few hours and I'd definitely recommend it!
Post edited October 23, 2016 by 01kipper
Heretic Kingdoms: The Inquisition (aka Kult)

It's not a great game but it has some cool innovative mechanics and the storytelling was interesting enough as well.

Combat is very simplistic: you move by holding the left mouse button, you attack by holding the right mouse button, and when you're hurt you press the shortcut for your inexhaustible healing item. That's basically it. Each time you heal yourself this way, your bloodpoints (that is, your maximum hitpoints) drop by a percentage depending on the damage you have to heal (think of it as more permanent injuries or exhaustion). However, once you get the opportunity to make camp, you're back to your full maximum health again, and there are also abilities later in the game that counteract the exhaustion. Because of this, I chose to play the game in Easy mode, as higher difficulties wouldn't have made the game more challenging and exciting, only increased the number of times that I would have been forced to run away and rest, which would have been frustrasting and a waste of time.

And speaking of wasting time, there's a lot of unnecessarily long walks in the game, and often to and fro, through areas that look nice enough but feel rather empty after they have been cleared of all enemies. There is an overland map that allows quicktravel between areas, but quite often the maps have only one exit and the NPCs you'd want to talk to again are at the opposite end of it, so you'll have to walk there for half a minute or more each time you enter the map. In the city there's an arena that makes you leave and re-enter the map before you can start your next battle, and the battle ground is not even close to the exit but 20 seconds away (that means 20 seconds to the exit, wait for next area to load, get back in, wait for arena area to load, walk another 20 seconds to the battle ground). I really don't know what they were thinking. Also, there's something off about the walking animation, speed or sound, maybe a combination of all these, and it makes walking feel even more of a drag. I think it's mostly the sound, which is pretty repetitive and annoying. And the mouse cursor is the same as in Windows, no fancy icon designed specifically for the game, just your old Windows cursor, and clicking on moving enemies or lootable items on the ground feels very clunky and imprecise.

Anyway, I still found several things to like about it. Like being able to switch between two planes of existence at will (real world and dreamworld haunted by spirits), which allows you to flee from battles in one reality, at the risk of running into new opponents in the dreamworld, but also to find ghost NPCs or secret marks that help you raise your ability attributes (Melee, Ranged, Magic and Speed), if you find enough of them. The items' attunement system is pretty great as well, and feels a bit ahead of its time (although maybe that's also because the game looks like it's from 1998-2000, while it's actually from 2004).

All items you find require you to meet a certain condition, but not in order to wear or wield them (you can wear and wield whatever you want), but to attune yourself to them and unlock and extract the power stored within. For example, you might find a weapon that requires you to wear light armour. You can use it even when you're wearing heavy or no armour, but if you wear light armour while you wield it, each successful hit brings you closer to unlocking its power, and some opponents, mostly ghosts and demons also drop essence that when consumed contributes to the process. Once you reach 100%, you learn a new feat - the so called attunement. The number of active attunements is restricted but grows with leveling and you can switch between them whenever you make camp. Also, once you've learned an attunement, you don't need to wield the weapon or wear the armour you've extracted it from. As long as you meet the condition of the attunment (e.g. Light Armour) you can wield and wear whatever you want. I found this to be a great motivation for trying out different weapons and fighting styles, just to unlock all the powers stored within them. I started out heavily armored with heavy high damage weapons but then switched to no armour and fast low damage weapons in the end (armour decreases your attack rate). Because all the experimentation for unlocking powers made me try out different things instead of sticking to the same style all the time, as I often do in other RPGs.

The story of the game is not extraordinary, but I quite liked how it was told. Contrary to some RPGs that dump lots of lore and walls of text on you, here it was told in small chunks along the way, either via dialogues or interludes with illustrated pictures and narrator voice, but always short and on point, without any obsolete information. And while nothing completely new or terribly creative, the setting was still more interesting than your average fantasy game about elves and dwarves and saviors (neither heroic nor grimdark, more about politics and personal beliefs). Your female character's story and most of her answers are pre-defined, which might turn off some players, but I actually liked that. You also get to make a few choices towards the end, but until then, everything is set, so no need to replay it.

I don't know if I would recommend the game to anyone; even though it's comparatively short for an RPG (only took me one weekend to play through), it's not really worth wasting that much time on it, considering the drawbacks listed above. But those attunement mechanics were fun. And I'm curious about Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms now. Too bad it's still not finished yet.
Post edited October 24, 2016 by Leroux
Finished Final Exam and it was a lot of fun. A bit repetitive but that beat'em all was quite good. Good graphics and music too.

Full list here.
I just finished Mount and Blade - Warband.
I had tried this game twice and both quit because time consuming and too difficult to assault castles.
But this time I used with Gekokujo mod and I enjoyed it a lot since as a Japanese I'm familiar this subject.
I joined in Oda clan and after getting a city I betrayed them and became an independent daimyo(king). I conquered central Japan area soon.But almost all other daimyos declare of war on me! I fight hard to beat their armies east and west.repeatedly and eventually I united Japan to my banner and became a shogun!
I've heard there is developing the sequel so I look forward to it.

My 2016 list is here
Kicked my 2nd character into 2nd difficulty setting in Path of Exile...I think it's good time to buy bigger stashes.

Company of Heroes - good and fresh air into RTS genre. Didn't liked 4th mission where you need to capture the road for your convoy, enemies spawning everywhere. I set 4 nests of MG in my base and it was still not enough to stop jerries from bothering my base! Medal tasks are easy most of the time if you take it slow.
Any mission with timers (20-30min) felt boring.
Company of Heroes: Tales of Valor - more variety in missions, but it's really short, like 2-3 missions per chapter.
Last mission in last chapter get you stuck if you don't do things in right order, made me stuck for 2h (while whole add-on took me 5h to finish).
Company of Heroes 2 - is such a mess (balance and chaos) it hurt. Didn't liked missions in Poland considering that's my own country and thre were like 3-4 missions in it. Plus AK partizants collaborating with soviets talking in mix of polish and english ("I fight for wolna Polska", "good fszista is martva faszysta" etc.) cringe like hell.

Didn't liked units jumping out of cover (which is a base of the whole game - sit in cover to survive).
King's Quest II (I played the 1987 DOS version via ScummVM)

This game is nearly identical to KQ1, just set in a different land with different puzzles. However, I found it significantly more difficult because unlike the first game there are not multiple solutions to the puzzles, and some of the puzzle solutions felt more obscure. However, it was still fun and can be completed in a few hours so I'd still recommend it if you SAVE EARLY, SAVE OFTEN :)!!
Costume Quest 2

I knew what to expect and I got just that. Gameplay-wise it's very formulaic, you do the same stuff as in Costume Quest 1, and you do it over and over again in each new area. No big surprises, no terribly exciting new battles or opponents, although some of the new costumes are neat. All in all, not very ambitious, more like a longer DLC to the first game (6-10 hours maybe). And it's very simple and easy, but I guess it's supposed to be a game for a younger audience, or casual entertainment for the whole family. That being said, I still enjoyed the story, humor, exploration and music quite a bit, maybe even more so than in the first one.
Post edited October 26, 2016 by Leroux
Westerado: Double Barreled

Simple but entertaining Wild West adventure. I enjoyed it, mostly. The best thing about it is the music, but the exploration, the questing and the shootouts can be fun as well, and the graphics are nice enough if you like pixel art. The completionist approach took me 4-5 hours for the first playthrough, although in the end I didn't bother to find all the collectibles. You can replay the game with new unlocked characters and I'll wager there are still some secrets to discover, but while there is some randomization, I assume the story, the map and the quests will stay more or less the same, so I'm not really interested in doing everything another time, just for a slightly different ending or something.

Despite my overall enjoyment of the title, there were some things I didn't like that much. There is only one autosave, no manual saving and loading. You can kill important NPCs and fail quests either in this way or others. I'm pretty sure quite a few players will appreciate that and I guess it's fun for those who like to replay, but not so much for one-playthrough completionists. And then there is the death system, which makes you "respawn" at your uncle's (officially someone found you bleeding in the wilds and brought you back home) and lose half of your money. This can be a very severe punishment, or not matter at all, depending on how much you're carrying. And everything you've deposited in the bank is excluded from this. You can get money from shooting bandits which I assume will randomly spawn now and then, but I believe the money you can get from quests and hidden treasure is finite, so you really can't afford to lose half of your money repeatedly if you want to buy all weapons and maybe even a house (I never managed to get enough money for a house). As a result, I always put my all money in the bank to be on the safe side, so dying became nothing more than a very minor annoyance, because if you don't carry anything, you can't lose anything. It also made spending money on hats (aka "extra lives") quite obsolete, since on death you'll respawn with your full maximum of three hats anyway. Another thing I found weird is that you can officially explore more than 100% of the map ... Last but not least, the ultimate checkpoint placement before the final battle was a bit annoying, but all in all the game isn't that hard.

I'd say at the current Humble Bundle price, it's worth it, but the regular price seems a bit high compared to other games in that price range, considering how short and simple it is. Still a nice game, and good PC games with Wild West setting are somewhat of a rarity. Sadly, it's Steam only, but the Steam version seems to be DRM-free, once installed.
Post edited October 26, 2016 by Leroux
Star Trek: Voyager - Elite Force

Not a bad FPS by any account. Actually quite short, but that's not a bad thing. Certainly benefits from the participation of the original cast to provide voice acting, and actually has quite a strong plot for a video game, pulling off a passable imitation of a Star Trek episode. Then the quality tapers off - nay, I'd say it plummets to its death off a cliff - in the final level by introducing a completely arbitrary and bland villain with no motivation other than to conquer the galaxy.

Suffers from the usual litany of problems of id Tech shooters from the 90s with scripting glitches, engine bugs and the like.

I would point out that it did bother me that the game didn't raise any objections to my consistently vaporising lifeforms, whereas that would have been completely against Starfleet protocol in the series and movies. Also, it never dawned on me when watching the series, but how the fuck did Chell get into Starfleet?
Finished episode 3 of Batman: The Telltale Series. Still enjoyable but this episode was a bit less interesting than the first two.

Full list here.
<span class="bold">DOOM</span>

This (Doom Review (PC) - Worth A Buy) is pretty much the reason I got DOOM. I have nothing else to say right now.

Complete list of games finished in 2016.