Author Topic: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?  (Read 392887 times)

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Offline ejamer

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #925 on: August 07, 2019, 10:51:03 PM »
Polished off Mega Man ZX Advent (DS).

This game isn't perfect - story is an absolute mess, difficulty spikes aren't very even, and it would be easy to complain about how some powers have no meaningful use in the game - but I still think this game gets a lot more right than wrong. Once you beat the first couple of bosses and the metroidvania-style world begins to open up things move along nicely. The controls feel tight and there are a handful of powers that are very enjoyable to experiment with. The game is a challenge, but (once you get into the Mega Man groove) never really unfair or unreasonable when playing at the Normal difficulty.

Overall, I really enjoyed my time with the game. Not sure there is much to bring me back for more... but would happily hold onto it and play through again in the future. Recommended.
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Offline azeke

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #926 on: August 25, 2019, 11:16:57 PM »
The Witness (Epic Store):

Got the game for free back in, i don't know April? -- and have been playing it.

Finished with almost full completion. Just one puzzle away from full 100%. It must be one of those stray panels lying somewhere in the forest...

It's a very smart game, puzzle design constantly pushes you to rethink everything you see by doing seemingly minor changes and i enjoy that. Solving some of the puzzles was very tough, but i enjoyed the process of analysis and trying to glean what designer wants of me.

I had to employ external tools to solve some of them. Obviously, screenshots and notes on paper, but even beyond that i used color picker from MS Paint for one kind of puzzle. I am not sure how one can solve these without doing that and knowing colour theory.

For one of the hardest challenges in the game i even wrote a program in javascript that solved part of the challenge for me because these were annoying for me to deal with. I enjoyed writing that program so much, i kept rewriting it with many different tools and frameworks which also helped me to stay more or less up-to-date professionally. So that was fun in by itself too.

Some aspects of the game can feel pretentious to some but to me they felt too elementary if anything. While i was nodding during some voiced messages in the game, i was like "yeah-yeah, i get it" for most of them.

When i was just starting -- a big question for me was -- "why is this game in 3d to begin with?" Wouldn't it be better served just as a 2d sequence of puzzle panels since at the start that's all you see. While the game somewhat justifies placing it's puzzles in 3d i still feel the world in this game holds largely decorative function, which is a function in on by itself i admit.

Visuals are striking and beautiful and the game very consciously guides the player to move him from one impressive vista to another, even highlighting some of them with very strategically placed couches or just by with a clearing in bushes with a coastal view.

It's not a game for everyone -- you need a LOT of effort to play it and complete it and then actually complete, and then ACTUALLY for real complete it.

Herei's how my folder looked like by the end:

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Offline Adrock

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #927 on: August 27, 2019, 10:02:27 AM »
Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King (Switch)

Initially, I thought this was a decent if a little unpolished Zelda homage. Initially. It’s filled with so many odd choices that I have a really hard time recommending it at full price.

1. Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King is, for all intents and purposes, a four button game and for no good reason as far as I can tell. The sword is mapped to A, items can be mapped to B and X, + brings up the menu on the item screen, - brings up the menu on the world map screen but basically is the same as +. The shoulder buttons/triggers and Y aren’t used at all. The game would have been a lot more fun if the shield could be mapped to R.

2. The game allows you to collect items before you meet the person who explains what it is. Relatively early, I picked up some brains. The NPC that wants them wasn’t accessible until much later. For the first few hours of the game, I kept finding scrolls, but I missed the NPC who dropped her scrolls all over the world. The item screen displays how many of an item were collected with no way to highlight it for a cheeky and/or informative blurb. There’s just a sense of “Well, I guess these are just in my life now.”

3. I have no idea who this game is for. The anime art on the title screen appears no where else in the game. The graphics are cutesy yet seemingly not in the ironic Conker’s Bad Fur Day way. Toilet humor, implied stalking, and references to the main character being a mass murderer among other things are sprinkled throughout, always feeling completely out of place. The game is mostly really easy with some absurd difficult spikes that would just stop younger players. Some of the puzzles are hellacious.

If nothing else, games like Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King really illustrate why Nintendo’s first party games are largely timeless. There’s a level of polish that is absent from so many indie and even large third party titles. Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King is just filled with excessive amounts of asinine bullshit including but not limited to:

1. It apes the “dah dah dah daaaaaahhhh” moment from Zelda when opening a chest except here, there’s a slight delay when regaining control so if an enemy was attacking, you’re getting hit. Other games would give you invincibility frames. Not Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King.

2. The world map is too pixelated to be useful.

3. There are running sections that pair falling floor tiles with conveyor belts and indestructible enemies that shoot energy balls at you, and let me tell you those sections can suck a cornucopia of dicks. This is coupled with the fact that you respawn at the room entrance, not the safest platform, meaning if you fall at the very end of a long sequence, you have to do it all over again. And you lose half a heart for falling. One particular section in the last dungeon includes a portion in which damage is unavoidable unless you managed to get optional item earlier in the game. I died there so many times I ended up just reloading my save twice.

4. There’s one room in the last dungeon that has conveyor belts in a rectangle surrounding some switches. If you’re closer to the edge at the corners, the game doesn’t just push you from the vertical belt to the horizontal belt like literally every other game with this mechanic. Instead, you fall between them then respawn at the room entrance.

TLDR: If you’re looking for a Zelda-like game, there are probably better choices. Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King isn’t bad; it isn’t particularly good either. If you want to try it, I recommend waiting for a sale.

Offline ejamer

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #928 on: September 04, 2019, 06:06:51 PM »
Ha!  Take that, Crimson Shroud (3DS)!  I totally kicked butt in the New Game+ mode (although did use a walkthrough for a few hints about where to find randomly dropped keys). The style of game still appeals to me quite a bit. The design has some issues, no doubt, but I wouldn't mind seeing a full RPG done in similar style.

Not much left to do in this one, and even though I missed the official Retroactive deadline it's been a fun ride to play through again.
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Offline broodwars

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #929 on: September 04, 2019, 06:51:08 PM »
I've beaten Control, Remedy's latest game. Unfortunately, the best I can say is "wait...that's it?" I just do not understand where all the praise is coming from, and I ADORE Remedy's previous work on Alan Wake (and tolerated Quantum Break). It's just an incredibly average shooter with below-average Metroid design; a story colder than the vacuum of space; and a location of limitless possibilities that is only EVER used imaginatively ONCE in the best sequence of the entire game (with the best song in the game)...at the end.

There's just a crippling lack of imagination and heart to this game, and it runs like hot garbage even on my PS4 Pro. Hopefully the DLC can save it.


At least Alan Wake FIRMLY exists in this game's world, and there is a LOT of indication that Alan Wake 2 is coming on the horizon.
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Offline MagicCow64

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #930 on: September 29, 2019, 08:10:01 PM »
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Switch):

Months after starting and nearly 100 hours later, I have finally destroyed Ganon forever and brought eternal peace to Hyrule.

I completed all shrines, divine beasts, memories, side quests, DLC ('cept for Master Sword trials, fuuuck that) and collected exactly 441 Koroks.

All in all a phenomenal game. The first third or so of my time was especially sublime, as I had viewed basically no media about the game ahead of time and had read as little as possible. A true sense of wonder and discovery that I didn't know if I could get from a game again, even if it wears off when you do a completionist comb-through. And even then, I was still digging up new nuances right up until the end (you can drop bombs while paragliding? You can do tricks while shield surfing? There's a fucking magic creature on that mountain that I saw glowing once and never again?!).

It's fitting that they used the original Legend of Zelda as a prototyping tool for this game, because I can totally envision how BOTW, excellent though it is, can serve as the base for a new series paradigm, much like how the NES game was the crude foundation for A Link to the Past, and thus the fundamental structure for over two decades of medium-best experiences.

They completely nailed the texture of the open-world experience with the environmental symbiosis and constant (and systemic) interactivity. Nothing else comes close in my experience, and in my opinion this is Nintendo leading from behind in a now-omnipresent genre that to this point has failed to truly capitalize on the original groundbreaking, but shallow, thrills of GTA III.

But as I mentioned, part of the joy here is imagining how BOTW could make the jump to a LttP level of sophistication. Double the rune powers and interconnected systems? Every shrine a shrine quest, the best element of the game? Underwater swimming and flight? Full Majora's Mask NPC complexity? A causal relationship between different dimensions/times? Skyward Sword-level combat articulation?

Aside from providing a rejuvenating glimpse of the future from a necessarily adolescent perspective, there are a few legitimate flaws.

-The divine beast dungeons are great and completely fit the ethos of the game (and it's really damn impressive that they built these actual objects). They turn the open-ended tactility of the game inside out in focused bouts, and I wouldn't have it any other way. BUT, there should have been twice as many, with more varied bosses, and the lizard one felt pretty uninspired (one 90-degree turn? C'mon, it should have been in all directions). The Champion's Ballad dungeon was fantastic, though, and an encouraging preview of how they can run with the tools they've built.

-I enjoyed pretty much all of the shrines, even the tilt ones, but they definitely erred on the side of easiness. Because this approach is new, I still found them viscerally fun, and I usually strongly dislike mushy "physics" puzzles. They managed to achieve a sweet spot between intended solution and ingenuity that maybe only the Portal games have pulled off (within a simpler framework). That said, there were about 100% too many combat trials. If these were actually varied and thought-out like the Champion's Ballad one, this would have been fine, but fighting the same robot 15 times got real old. It would have been better to just reduce the number of shrines, nothing magic about 120.

-While the shrine quests were awesome, most of the regular side quests were not. This is a open world sandtrap they haven't swung their way out of. For every good one that leverages the strengths of the game's design approach (following the Zora love letter downstream) there are five stock ones (collect 40 mushrooms). But shrine quests; man, I can't remember as stressful and delightful a moment as trying to nail that platform with an arrow from the top of the Rito spire while the shadow cutout passed over. Imagine an x^2 version of something like that through an enhanced underlying framework.

-Money is actually important and useful in this game, which is now a solved problem with the series. But in general, I felt like there needed to be another reward structure underlying the quests and activities. Stasis golf? Cool! Oh, it's just rupees? I'm moving on. The armor attributes are a potential basis, but maybe something like shifting arrows to regenerating resources with expandable caps (and types). I really underutilized arrows because I was paranoid about running out and not being able to do Korok bits.

-The armor sets are fun and a decent stop-gap for a tool inventory, but some of the upgrade paths are too onerous. There also really, really needs to be a quick select option for custom sets. I probably lost hours of my life due to a counter-intuitive impulse to save time by not going into the menu to switch gear to climb or swim faster. Similarly, there should really be a button combo to drop weapons without menu intervention.

But that's pretty much all the criticism I can muster, and they're all things that can be fixed or re-thought. Here's to the future.


« Last Edit: September 29, 2019, 08:31:12 PM by MagicCow64 »

Offline Discord.RSS

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #931 on: September 30, 2019, 08:56:29 PM »
I completed all shrines, divine beasts, memories, side quests, DLC ('cept for Master Sword trials, fuuuck that) and collected exactly 441 Koroks.

Congrats! Pretty much agree with your entire post tbh, it's crazy to think they could build so much upon this foundation still... I like your ideas of diving and flying more. Maybe some underwater cave diving?

By the way, if you ever feel like going back, maybe reconsider doing the Sword Trials. I thought I would hate those because it sounded like filler content, but they've been a really fun surprise, to me at least.

While I don't really think the reward's worth it (a problem this game has more often), the actual moment-to-moment experience of Sword Trials is really thrilling. Fundamentally it's just a neat way for the development team to craft a few more crazy scenarios for you to figure out; things like sailing a one-man armada into a harbour, getting shot at from all directions would never happen in the world of Hyrule, but here it's more acceptable.

Thematically, the three Trials also work nicely since they appear themed around the Power, Courage and Wisdom themes often seen in Zelda games. So for the first one they expect you to go all-out with combat, whereas the last one is pretty much impossible without grasping many of the game's subtleties.The presence of the Sages basically confirms this.

I definitely struggled a lot on the last Trial because they'll suddenly throw Lynels and Flying Guardians at you, neither of which I ever really learned to fight. Had to just swallow my pride there and reach for the ancient arrows, bye-bye. Tip: cook every hearty radish separately with nothing else, that nets you several Full Recovery meals instead of just one.

Offline MagicCow64

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #932 on: October 01, 2019, 08:11:41 PM »
I completed all shrines, divine beasts, memories, side quests, DLC ('cept for Master Sword trials, fuuuck that) and collected exactly 441 Koroks.

Congrats! Pretty much agree with your entire post tbh, it's crazy to think they could build so much upon this foundation still... I like your ideas of diving and flying more. Maybe some underwater cave diving?

By the way, if you ever feel like going back, maybe reconsider doing the Sword Trials. I thought I would hate those because it sounded like filler content, but they've been a really fun surprise, to me at least.

While I don't really think the reward's worth it (a problem this game has more often), the actual moment-to-moment experience of Sword Trials is really thrilling. Fundamentally it's just a neat way for the development team to craft a few more crazy scenarios for you to figure out; things like sailing a one-man armada into a harbour, getting shot at from all directions would never happen in the world of Hyrule, but here it's more acceptable.

Thematically, the three Trials also work nicely since they appear themed around the Power, Courage and Wisdom themes often seen in Zelda games. So for the first one they expect you to go all-out with combat, whereas the last one is pretty much impossible without grasping many of the game's subtleties.The presence of the Sages basically confirms this.

I definitely struggled a lot on the last Trial because they'll suddenly throw Lynels and Flying Guardians at you, neither of which I ever really learned to fight. Had to just swallow my pride there and reach for the ancient arrows, bye-bye. Tip: cook every hearty radish separately with nothing else, that nets you several Full Recovery meals instead of just one.

I'm probably just going to sell my copy, but good to know that the sword trials are more interesting than they initially seemed. I made it maybe six levels into the first tranche, died unceremoniously, and had no intention of burning another 30 minutes on a rogue-like thing. I also never really had a great handle on the combat nuances, leaning heavily on champion abilities and meals to brute force through difficult encounters. It was only late in the game that I got somewhat comfortable with deflecting guardian beams. This is probably another legit issue with the game, in that the early going conditions you to be pretty combat averse, and by the time I was powered up I was pretty firmly in the habit of avoiding it unless situationally necessary. Also, silver monsters everywhere after you beat all the dungeons.

Offline Discord.RSS

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #933 on: October 02, 2019, 08:45:06 AM »
I'm probably just going to sell my copy, but good to know that the sword trials are more interesting than they initially seemed. I made it maybe six levels into the first tranche, died unceremoniously, and had no intention of burning another 30 minutes on a rogue-like thing. I also never really had a great handle on the combat nuances, leaning heavily on champion abilities and meals to brute force through difficult encounters. It was only late in the game that I got somewhat comfortable with deflecting guardian beams. This is probably another legit issue with the game, in that the early going conditions you to be pretty combat averse, and by the time I was powered up I was pretty firmly in the habit of avoiding it unless situationally necessary. Also, silver monsters everywhere after you beat all the dungeons.

Yeah, that's basically how I've been playing it too. Recently burned through all my shields finally trying to learn the Guardian parry, which I can do about 50% of the times now.
What I like about the Sword Trials is they force you to be smart & economical. Gotta spread groups out with bombs, always keeping one in stasis, try to go for sneak attacks, shoot enemies off platforms into water/lava, etc.

There's an early level in the third tranche where you have basically nothing and it's thundering everywhere; I used magnesis on a rusty sword and pushed it into enemies' faces - resulting in them getting struck by lightning. Then later on you can convert those rusty weapons into useful ones by feeding them to an Octorok.

Definitely get why it wouldn't be your thing, but the one advantage of this gauntlet-style of doing things, is that it allows the game to assume some level of persistency. A major reason why the shrines are always relatively easy, is that the player could theoretically barge all the way from the Plateau to a remote area, and only do Shrines there. Thus, every shrine needs to be theoretically beatable with the same base abilities and basically no equipment.

Sword Trials feeds you the exact equipment for future floors, so they can craft levels centered around using elemental weapons, or ranged ones, etc. That said, I think they're mostly worth it for players who liked the Eventide and Shrouded Shrine islands.

Offline ejamer

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #934 on: October 03, 2019, 10:16:10 PM »
Just finished playing through Metroid: Other M (Wii) in prep for the forum retrospective (link: http://www.nintendoworldreport.com/forums/index.php?topic=60133.0).

I'll save most of my commentary for that thread, but will say that - despite some significant issues with the game - it was a very enjoyable experience overall and the roughly 10-hour playing time breezed by. Hopefully others will join in with the discussion later this month when we talk about the game!
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Offline ejamer

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #935 on: October 23, 2019, 09:00:20 PM »
Finished off Carcassonne (DS) and Balloon Kid (3DS Virtual Console) recently.
Really enjoyed both, although obviously they are very different.

Carcassonne did drag out a bit because I greatly prefer that board game with expansions and smaller player counts (4 max) while the DS game often put you into scenarios with 5 or 6 players and doesn't include any of the expansion content that helps balance out player choices. Still good though, and the local multiplayer via download play is a great feature. (Catan is probably a better video game implementation, but requires multiple cartridges to play multiplayer which is a real bummer.)

Balloon Kid was exactly as described - take Balloon Fight and turn it into a weird platformer, complete with boss battles. And yet, somehow it still surprised me. Controls took a little practice, but after that it was smooth sailing and a lot of fun. Glad this one was recommended in that other thread, and feel like it was a few dollars well spent.
---

Also finished off The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D (3DS). For a long time, this was fighting to be my favorite Zelda game... but it's also probably the hardest time I've ever had to finish off a game from the series.

The world building is great, but really wants to have you be fully immersed in the game so that all of the little intersecting details are visible. Unfortunately, my playing sessions are much more casual these days - shorter, less consistent, and spread out over time. That made it harder than it should be to pull the whole fabric together without missing bits and pieces or forgetting certain details that I was supposed to pursue. So what used to be something I'd call a strength is now more of a dual-edged sword, forcing me to rely on some walkthrough content to get through a few parts in the overworld.

Also, given the build up and how many other great moments the game had, the final boss was a bit of a disappointment. It's fine; there's nothing wrong with that battle. It just doesn't stand out. Somehow I had expected a bigger set piece battle, or something really unusual after coming through such a long (for me) journey... instead it was a pretty normal Zelda boss battle.

Still, the game was pretty amazing. Except for one or two opaque moments, everything is just really well assembled. Dungeon design is generally great, and they really went all out on the weirdness factor. The 3DS port also has a lot of minor improvements and is definitely the best way to play this game. Not sure it's my favorite Zelda any longer - 2D games tend to be easier for me to dive into, and Breath of the Wild is hard to beat on the 3D side (even though that's quite a different type of design) - but Majora's Mask is definitely a great game and a perfect choice for some Halloween gaming.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2019, 07:27:51 AM by ejamer »
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Offline ejamer

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #936 on: October 31, 2019, 10:00:13 PM »
New Super Mario Bros 2 (3DS) - Thankfully the game was quite short, because it was perhaps the most mediocre Mario game I remember playing. The conceit of collecting lots of coins - keeping both a running total over the course of the game, and a "high score" aspect for each level of this game is completely wasted on me.

I didn't enjoy it enough to bother playing all levels or looking for more than a couple of secret exits, and that "bare minimum" completion level in a Mario game makes me feel kind of sad. Usually these games keep me glued until (at least) finding all the stages and exits.

That said, this wasn't really a surprise. I didn't have high expectations going in, and the "New Super Mario Bros" series has rarely been one that really works for me...
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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #937 on: November 01, 2019, 09:24:01 AM »
Yeah, New Super Mario Bros. 2 is pretty weak. I did like New Super Mario Bros. Wii and New Super Mario Bros. U (the former getting the edge). This is going to sound very old-man-yells-at-cloud-ish: none of the New Super Mario Bros. titles feel timeless like the original Super Mario Bros. games. Part of it is the very plastic-y, non-distinctive art direction. You can tell the games apart by looking at resolution, but the art makes them bleed into each other. The power-ups weren’t that exciting either. The box art of old Mario games showed some of the coolest stuff you got to do in those games. “I wear a cape AND get to ride a dinosaur.” When Nintendo put Yoshi on the New Super Mario Bros. Wii cover, it ironically wasn’t new anymore. With New Super Mario Bros. 2, there are a bunch of coins. Mario has been collecting those for almost 30 years by 2012. Why was that noteworthy? I don’t remember what collecting a bunch of coins even did in the game. What did you get for all the trouble?

To me, New Super Mario Bros. 2 was a missed opportunity in that it should have been based on Super Mario Bros. 2 even if the art was the same.

Offline ejamer

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #938 on: November 01, 2019, 09:48:42 AM »
... I don’t remember what collecting a bunch of coins even did in the game. What did you get for all the trouble? ...

As far as I can tell, coins don't do anything at all in the single-player game.
If you break a million coins collected, the title screen changes slightly (in a meaningless way).

There was the idea of street pass competitions vs people to try and get the most coins possible in specific stages, I think... although Street Pass is so utterly dead now that I can't say with much certainty. That idea would be neat, despite being kind of pointless.

There are also lots of neat little tricks to increase your coin count if you are an expert player... but the question remains: why bother? They don't do anything, so who really cares about doubling your coin count in some arbitrary stage?

Quote
To me, New Super Mario Bros. 2 was a missed opportunity in that it should have been based on Super Mario Bros. 2 even if the art was the same.

I love this idea. It would have been much more appealing to me than what we actually got.
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Offline Luigi Dude

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #939 on: November 01, 2019, 11:33:44 AM »
New Super Mario Bros Wii, U and Luigi are 3 of the most polished and refined platforming experiences in gaming.  Even the first on the DS is a lot better then many give it credit for.  But even as a big fan of the NSMB series, I couldn't even get into New Super Mario Bros 2.

It feels like it was a game made by people who already hate the NSMB series and were trying to make what they already viewed the series as.  Which might be true since the game was a rushed outsourced project since the main NSMB team that did DS and Wii were busy working on U, but Nintendo freaked out after the 3DS disastrous post launch sales before the price cut and wanted a 2D Mario as soon as possible.  The other NSMB games get criticized for lack of new idea's, but they at least found interesting ways to build on old ones.  NSMB 2 on the other hand feels like a true copy and paste job with hardly any creativity.  This is made worse by the fact the difficulty is made non-existance with the easiest level design in series history.

Of course the ultimate kicker in all this is there are actual good levels designed for this game, but they're all DLC.  Yeah, I downloaded all the DLC levels because I'm a huge Mario fan that needs to experience everything I can out of the game even if the main game was pretty weak.  I'm glad I did though since there are legit well designed levels in the DLC, including some really hard ones as well.  But this just makes me even more shocked at how mediocre the main game is, since these DLC levels shows the team clearly was capable of much more then they did.
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Offline ejamer

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #940 on: November 19, 2019, 09:26:08 PM »
Catrap (3DS VC) - Not sure what to say about this one. The puzzles were good and it's definitely a clever game... but by the end some stages dragged on longer than was enjoyable and the game lacked any real personality.

Having recently played through Mole Mania, my natural inclination is to compare the two... and in both style and gameplay I think that Catrap falls a bit short. Mole Mania also has more content, although any individual screen there tends to be shorter/easier than what you get from a Catrap stage.

So despite being a really solid puzzle game, it didn't leave as strong an impression as it could have. Fans of the genre will have a good time though, and should have an easy time getting their money's worth from this cheap Virtual Console release.
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Offline Khushrenada

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #941 on: November 19, 2019, 11:40:04 PM »
I finished Catrap last week on Monday. Also, finished getting all the items and playing the final boss in Metroid: Other M last monday too. Felt like I accomplished so much.

I haven't played Mole Mania yet. Saved it for later so can't compare the two but I really liked Catrap. It became a bit like a Streetpass/Animal Crossing game where I'd play a bit of it each day usually with a goal of getting through 5 puzzles. Of course, some levels stumped me more than others so at times I didn't accomplish much. (80 and 88 were the ones that took the longest for me to figure out and 100 was probably a good 45 minutes.)

It's true that it is kind of a basic game in music, characters, look and atmosphere. And as I was finally solving 80 and 88, I realized that the biggest concept the game works around is falling blocks. The blocks always go down, they can't go back up so the solution has to be based around the order they descend. Yeah, that's not an idea that should be hard to grasp but I never really thought about it much in the first 60 - 70 puzzles until I started getting stumped near the end. At the same time, for the relatively low amount of elements (rocks, ladders, sand/dirt), I'm quite impressed with the amount of variation and different puzzles the game designers were able to come up using them. This was another winning Game Boy game in my books and one I'd recommend. I suppose I should add it to my vote in the Game Boy thread.

Offline Khushrenada

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #942 on: November 19, 2019, 11:40:13 PM »
I then turned my attention to Super Mario Land 3: Wario Land and just finished beating it a couple hours ago so that is another Game Boy game down. Your comment of it being a sort of slower platformer is quite true. Part of that comes from Wario who pretty much only has one speed (unless you've got the Rocket Hat to make him walk faster). Having player Super Mario Land again a few weeks prior, I'd still put that game ahead of this even though it is pretty basic. I just like that Mario can move at a faster pace, the levels aren't (or don't feel) long and it zips along keeping it from overstaying its welcome. You probably would want more once finished.

That doesn't mean Wario Land is a slog or I wouldn't have kept playing it so regularly but there are times you do wish you could move along faster and the level design is just a slight step up from being basic but overall mostly unmemorable. However, the game does have a different feel from a Mario platformer through Wario's actions and level make-up so I appreciated that it is able to create its own identity. The first section didn't really do much to impress me but as I advanced into the next couple and began to figure out more what the different powers could do and how to acquire treasures then the game started to become more engrossing. I suppose I could have read the manual for it sooner but I'm glad I checked it out 60% or so into the game to make sure I wasn't missing any other important details otherwise I don't think I'd have understood the ending to the game much.

Also, of the Super Mario Land games, I think this one is probably the most difficult. It is one of the few games where I began actively using the save state VC features frequently and almost out of necessity. I'm not sure what I'd have thought of this game if I had to originally played it on a Game Boy. It was the first course in Sherbert Land that got made me begin to resort to it with its falling logs and swooping birds. With some weird enemy hit detections at times along with Wario's brand of jumping, I begin to get annoyed quickly with that level and saving after advancing to certain parts so that I could instantly boot up and try again without having to recover so much of the same ground. Later on, whenever I came to a save point that you could pay money for, I'd just save with the VC restore point and keep going. That helped me a few times but there were still other times I'd forget to use it and I really hated losing all the coins I collected in a level and having to start over especially when I was getting close to the end of that level.

Oddly, the game gives no hints about boss fights either so it can be trial and error to figure out what to do. This would mean losing and having to redo a level or part of it to get to the boss to try again in the original release but now I could save at the boss's door and instantly try again. I'd have hated to face the final boss before. Took me at least 4 tries of experimenting before I lucked out in discovering how to damage it. I'm going to look up and see if I was missing something but it just seemed to be that you threw the genie lamp around and hoped it randomly landed right side up to spew out a cloud. Kind of weird. If I had to keep covering that same ground in the level just to get back to the boss fight from the game's save point, I'd have been so ticked at that fight and other instances I encountered. Since I was into restore points so much, I then began to abuse them for the coin minigame at the end of the level. Had more than enough when the game ended that I didn't even need all the treasures and their value to max out Wario's coin total and get what the end credits listed as a Perfect Game.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2019, 08:20:02 PM by Khushrenada »

Offline MagicCow64

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #943 on: November 20, 2019, 07:47:47 PM »
I also played through Wario Land 1 on the 3DS VC, and was not wild about it. I love 2 and 3, but felt like 1 was an undercooked, sluggish half-step between Mario Land 2 and Wario Land 2.

That said, supposedly Wario Land Virtual Boy really nails the Wario Land 1 approach, and is on par with the later sequels, though structurally different. And I'll probably never be able to play it!

Offline ejamer

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #944 on: November 27, 2019, 02:03:59 PM »
Professor Layton and the Last Specter (DS) - Slightly mixed feelings about the story in this game. Even by Layton standards, it felt like they pushed things a bit quickly at the end and left few too many threads underdeveloped or unresolved. Still a very good game though, and one that I enjoyed playing.

Recommended, although somewhere in the middle of the pack when compared to other games from the series.

After seeing the credits scroll, I probably won't go back to finish the bonus puzzles; completing 137 puzzles from the main game felt sufficient. But might give London Life a shot; it sounds like a bit dull, but that Brownie Brown style is simply charming... anyone want to speak out for (or against) investing some time in that mini-game?
« Last Edit: November 27, 2019, 02:05:37 PM by ejamer »
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Offline Khushrenada

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #945 on: November 27, 2019, 04:07:45 PM »
Professor Layton and the Last Specter (DS) - Slightly mixed feelings about the story in this game. Even by Layton standards, it felt like they pushed things a bit quickly at the end and left few too many threads underdeveloped or unresolved. Still a very good game though, and one that I enjoyed playing.

Really? I'd like to hear more on this. It's been about three years since I played this but I don't remember thinking anything felt underdeveloped or unresolved. Deets, please! I crave to hear further deets on this opinion!!! Perhaps in the Layton thread I started though since I already used that to dig into Miracle Mask a bit.

Offline ejamer

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #946 on: November 27, 2019, 09:43:33 PM »
Professor Layton and the Last Specter (DS) - Slightly mixed feelings about the story in this game. Even by Layton standards, it felt like they pushed things a bit quickly at the end and left few too many threads underdeveloped or unresolved. Still a very good game though, and one that I enjoyed playing.

Really? I'd like to hear more on this. It's been about three years since I played this but I don't remember thinking anything felt underdeveloped or unresolved. Deets, please! I crave to hear further deets on this opinion!!! Perhaps in the Layton thread I started though since I already used that to dig into Miracle Mask a bit.

Yeah - I'll throw Layton discussion there.
Link:  http://www.nintendoworldreport.com/forums/index.php?topic=62372.0;all


In the meantime, I finished off the final few stages of Labryinth (DS). There are at least two games with the same name, but this is the DS implementation of the board game (also known as "The aMAZEing Labyrinth" before getting rebranded). 

It's a solid implementation of the board game, with download play support... but it's not much more, and the story behind the campaign mode is a rather silly shadow of an Indiana Jones-style plot. Glad to have played it, and we'll probably enjoy playing the multiplayer here as my kids like the game, but it's not something to run out and buy unless you already know that you like the board game.
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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #947 on: November 29, 2019, 03:41:52 PM »
Katana Zero (Switch)

It’s short and fun. I got Katana Zero for like $10 on the eShop, and I wasn’t disappointed. I liked figuring out the best way to take out a room of dudes. The controls are mostly really tight. I only had trouble precisely slicing upward from a wall jump which caused numerous deaths. The game expects you to die a bunch of times, and this is even written into the story.

The plot is mostly incomprehensible. I had to check Wikipedia to gain some semblance of what the hell happened in the game. I’m still not entirely sure on some bits. The dialog is a little weak. A lot “fucks” thrown around that don’t add anything, and the writer has presumably never heard a child talk before.

Askiisoft appears to be planning DLC. There is a door in a post-game section with a locked door. If it’s free, I’ll check it out. I am mildly curious about the disturbing implications of the post-credits scene (side-bar: the world needs to stop putting things after the credits). I feel like that’s something to revisit. Parts of this world are not fleshed out which is at least partially why the plot and certain events did not make sense. Was it all (or part of) a massive drug trip? Maybe? Which parts? I don’t know.

All in all, a nice little indie action game. I recommend it.

Offline ejamer

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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #948 on: December 01, 2019, 11:36:31 PM »
Got my first ending after recruiting all three allies and defeating the final boss once on Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon (3DS).  Not sure if that should count as beating the game or not though... the credits have rolled, but the story continues in the new mode that opened up.  There also appear to be at least a couple more possible endings depending on what actions I take during the game, so lots of play left in this one.

And really, that kind of sums up my opinion about the game. End credits don't mean much when the game is well-crafted and fun to play, and gives the player good reasons to come back for more. My initial impression about the game was a bit soft - unsure if it was going to live up the relatively strong reviews it received. It did though, and is one of the better retro love letters of the past decade in my opinion. Very strong design all around with branching paths, hidden power-ups, and fun boss designs.

The "final boss" of my initial play-through seemed like it would be a slog initially... but his patterns were easy and they conveniently gave players an easy out to use (if they so desire) by giving you a massively overpowered special weapon just before you encounter him. It's cheesy, but a nice option at that point of the game and one that I made use of.

Definitely recommended for any fan of retro gaming.
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Re: What is the last game you beat? Thoughts/impressions?
« Reply #949 on: December 02, 2019, 09:08:34 AM »
So a while ago Broodwars mentioned Beetle Adventure Racing! as a racing game which did things a bit differently than the usual fare.

Split/Second's an easy pick there, along with Sonic All Stars Racing Transformed. Going back to the N64 days, I'd also cite Beetle Adventure Racing and Diddy Kong Racing.


I've since dug up the cart and yeah, it's quite a bit better than you'd expect from a licensed product. A lot of the racing games on N64 are stinkers, so it's helped by its relative quality to others.
Basically you zoom around in Volkswagen New Beetles (or Holden HSVs in Australia's version), barreling down long tracks at full speed, looking for shortcuts and collectable crates.

What's different here compared to racers of its time are a few things:
1. Shortcuts are near-mandatory to look for at the highest difficulty mode.
Each level has like 5 branching paths, most of them not easily spotted, which help you cut corners, collect boosts or lead to risky jumps. They vary in how useful they are, and some are really risky propositions that may hinder you more than help you if you mess up.
The game honestly doesn't have many tracks, so cramming them with alternative routes was a smart move to make it feel more substantial and keep things fresh upon repeat plays.

2. "Dynamic level design" may be overselling it, but most of these tracks change in a meaningful way at least once or twice.
The beach level never sees you return to the start, and the Jurassic Park rip-off level changes positioning of the T-Rex and lets a volcano erupt on the final lap to change the finish straight. Others are less interesting: they'll just gate off a previously accessible road to change the final corner.
While only the T-Rex level really benefits from this, it's interesting how later games like Mario Kart Wii's Bowser Castle and Sonic All Stars Racing Transformed used this mechanic too and were praised for it.

3. Permanence of items.
Instead of how items replenish in Mario Kart, here boxes can only be picked up once. This creates a clever risk-reward mechanic that makes you consider future laps. On the beach you want to grab the boxes in the water because you don't return there later, but in the countryside you take the same road thrice; when will that turbo be more useful, for early overtakes, or prolonging your lead later on?
It's clever how this is also applied to road signs. You can trash all the signs in lap one, but that leaves less guidance to tell you about corners in the remaining two laps. Only bummer is that this only affects the player; you don't see A.I. cars missing corners because there's no signs to inform them, but then again that might be asking too much from the N64.

The game definitely has negatives: there's really just 6 tracks to race on, music is super generic, the sound cuts out in a weird way in tunnels, framerate doesn't always hold it together, there's wonky collission physics when you hit other drivers, the Multiplayer Battle Mode feels like it took way more work than it was worth with this style of game, and the possibilities for recovery are so bad they just gave you a button to reset to the main road.
However, it nails a sensation of speed and makes the best out of a game with just one theme (New Beetle cars) by adding outlandish levels. It holds up a lot better than things like Top Gear Rally/Overdrive, Cruis'n Exotica, and MRC... I don't know that I love it 20 years down the line, but if you're going back to 3rd party N64 racers, you're better off playing this than San Francisco Rush or Roadsters.

P.S.: Bonus, I found the 2003 thread on this game here.