24th November, 2021
Hey hey hey people,
Well well, I managed to squeeze in a few more completions before end of this year. Since I started tracking how many games I beated each year, 2019 was the worst year and currently I’m sitting at 17 - exactly the same number of games I beated in 2019. But this year is not over yet and I think I can beat a few more, so it’s not going to be a complete failure! I’m close to 100% The Binding of Isaac Repentance DLC too and this game keeps stealing time from other games. And Forza Horizon 4 is not helping either. For December I want to beat DUSK, a game I got from secret santa event last year and it’s about time I give it a shot. I’m hoping to 100% Isaac and Forza before the end of this year.
See ya in december or january!
Beaten 1st time on difficulty – “Bring ‘em on!” (Medium?)
ioRtCW Source Port
Gotta say, although I give this game a positive score, I was disappointed. A WWII game with nazis & supernatural elements sounds like an awesome idea, but I enjoyed the game most during stealth missions and when there was no supernatural. And for an FPS the guns here are disappointing for most part.
On surface RTCW has plenty, but even in endgame you’ll end up using same 2-3 guns if you want to stay alive. Let’s start with grenades – they’re useless for most part. The area of damage is tiny, you can land one meter from someone and it might take half of their health, throwing is awful too, it’s like they weigh 10kg. I found them to be good against zombies that use shields, but there are like 2 levels where those guys show up… Colt pistol shows up late in game where you don’t use pistols anymore, you can dual wield them which is cool, but useless. And both colt and Thompson use .45 ACP ammo, which is very scarce. However I felt like Thompson is more accurate than MP40, so it had its use but rarely. Tesla gun – it sounds awesome, should be a super powerful gun in the endgame right? Not really and it’s useless for 99% of time you have it. It has super low range, which is weird, because ubersoldiers that use it have unlimited range! And on top of that it doesn’t stun lock more common enemies like SS paratroopers, so you’ll just end up killing yourself if you try to use. Sten gun is silenced but it overheats very quickly, it’s ok at first against weaker enemies but is less desirable to better FG 42 or not overheating MP40. Venom gun and panzerfaust were situational, but pretty powerful. But each has their problems, panzerfaust – no matter if you stand still, the missile can go in slightly different direction than where you were aiming. Wanna kill ubersoldier slowly approaching you with panzerfaust? Take a shot, oops the missile went slightly to the right and completely missed the target. Venom gun is awesome but has insane spread so it was only good in close range and on later levels you are in more open spaces. There’s also flamethrower but it was very situational, however burning nazis alive was fun, though they scream so horribly that you might feel a little bad.
So I only stucked to 3 weapons for most part – FG 42 for most fights, MP40 when I was out of ammo for FG 42 and scoped mauser for long range, occasionally using Venom gun or panzerfaust against enemies like Ubersoldiers or Lopers. It’s been years since I played old CoD or MoH but I have to give a plus to this game for using FG 42, I have never seen this weapon in any WW2 game except Red Orchestra. Most games would just use StG 44.
Bosses are just bullet sponges. First boss is a walking abomination that occasionally attacks you with undead spirits (projectile), shoot, keep your distance and it’ll die. Similar with final boss, though minor enemies spawn constantly but they all use melee attacks and I was mostly ignoring them when shooting at boss. It was also the only boss where I used my tesla gun because he only has melee attacks. Somewhere in middle there is an improved ubersoldier with huge HP and it zaps you to death or spams his venom gun. But in the fight room there is an open room, hide behind a wall, as he approaches and turns towards you, shoot, repeat until it’s dead.
Story is interesting at first. Sometime in middle ages, a sorcerer unable to kill dark knight Heinrich I, traps and buries him underground with a spell. Fast forward to WWII and nazis somehow learned about this and want to free him to win the war. A paranormal SS division is created, led by SS High Priestess Marianna Blavatsky. We don’t learn about her or more about the division until later. We play as Cpt. Blazkowicz (obviously) under OSA command and game starts in Castle Wolfenstein, where we try to escape after being captured and nearly tortured by nazis. Before every mission we get a cutscene from OSA debriefing and our objectives during the loading screen. At first OSA only knows about existence of paranormal division but nothing else, we go after it to learn more, we later learn about X-creatures and different experiments nazis do.
Campaign starts like a normal WWII nazi shooting game. We escape the castle, enter the nearby village, killing many soldiers and officers. Soon we enter underground crypt where undead warriors from medieval times are waking up and killing everybody they meet, nazis included. Shortly after leaving the crypts behind, we stumble into all-female SS Paranormal division. Although this is a 2001 game, their design is very 90’s imo. They all wear leather suits, either covering their entire body, or leaving some space to show cleavage and belly button. And of course they’re all young and sexy. They also use only silenced sten guns and reminded me of female black ops assassins from Half-life. They’re very quick, agile, use silenced weapons and wear heals. Next, after this weird encounter with paranormal and with no further clues, we go to stop launch of V2 missile with some new chemical warhead. This starts as a stealth mission, we need to get inside the base without triggering the alarm. Honestly I really enjoyed this part. Near end of this mission we are introduced to another new enemy – SS Paratroopers. They use exclusively FG-42 and are tougher than standard SS Soldiers. They also get a pretty cool intro, literally parachuting into the base we’re attacking and having a unique track played in background. After that it’s finally time to investigate Secret Weapons Facility runned by a scientist dubbed “Deathshead”. This mission is more of a human-made horror, with nazis experimenting on people with genetics and attaching weird machinery. This is where we get Venom gun, which is really fun to use here because the underground labs are full of tight spaces. And of course, a new enemy – Loper. A deformed human torso with stretched, muscular arms and no legs, instead it has some kind of tesla generator, it's very quick and jumpy, and will use its generator to deal a lot of damage if it gets close to you. When we meet them, they get out of their cells by accident and they kill everyone. Sadly we only get to fight them on this mission and one more later, they are deadly but fun to fight. After that and only just witnessing Deathshead escape via his submarine, we go after him to X-labs. We’ll meet more lopers near end and a new enemy – Ubersoldier. They use venom guns too and panzerfausts, later on they also use tesla guns. This is where we fight a second boss, improved Ubersoldier with tesla gun, which I mentioned before. We leave the labs and back to chasing paranormal. After breaching a dam, we get to a village that’s near chateau and where a meeting of key SS commanders is supposed to take place. We have to go quietly through village without triggering the alarm and killing 5 SS commanders on our way. I think this is the first mission without introducing a new enemy or weapon. However, you’ll notice something after entering the chateau – enemies like female SS soldiers or SS paratroopers got their health doubled. You can pretty much feel that as at this point you killed so many before that you know you need around 10-15 bullets from MP40 to kill a paratrooper, for example. So this is a weird difficulty bump and I admit game got pretty tough from there. I had to quicksave a lot. Last mission is getting to the dig site where Heinrich I is buried, you know, the guy I mentioned at start and stop him. Undead return, as well as Ubersoldiers with tesla guns. Our tesla gun is useful in this mission against undead.
This whole journey might sound exciting, but it had its ups and downs. The aforementioned bullet spongy bosses aside, fighting hordes of soldiers with subpar AI gets boring over time. On some missions it's easy to get lost and it's not clear where are you supposed to go next, X-labs were the worst in that regard. You have no limit to how many weapons you can carry, yet you’ll default to 3 weapons because others are not useful most of times. This game has also weird balance when it comes to realism and consistency. I get it that ammo for Thompson is scarce, because nazis used 9mm for their MP40, not .45 ACP, but why not just add random parachute drops over maps? Or when we go to Secret Weapons Facility, we go through city recently bombed by Allies and meet resistance fighters there, couldn’t they use Thompson as a source for us to get more ammo? The all-female SS use silenced sten and what’s really cool, their stens get overheated too and they will hide while it cools down, just like our sten. But then we meet ubersoldiers and their tesla guns are overpowered, meanwhile our is kinda shit. The best bits for me were the stealth missions and mission in bombed city. No paranormal bullshit or weird latex SS assassins. I once got a flashback to either first CoD or MoH, in a submarine dock as I’m pretty sure one of those game had a mission with submarine docks. Like Wolf3D this game has secrets and gold to find. But gold is useless, as there’s no life system in place and no scoreboard of any kind. Sure, there is a summary at the end of how many secrets you found, but to find a secret you need to be in that room, you don’t need to pick any items there for it to count. Feels like a throwback to first game and nothing else.
Soundtrack is surprisingly high value, we have a very cinematic orchestral soundtrack. It’s pretty good within the game and works for what is happening on the screen, but not something I would listen to in my free time. Visually it’s pretty good for 2001 game and it runs on Quake III engine. I would even say it looks better than first MoH and that came year after RTCW. AFAIK ioRtCW doesn’t change the visuals of this game, just expands the engine, adds some modern features for modders to use and adds support for widescreen, multiple speakers etc. And I would highly recommend you to play it with ioRTCW, worth it just for widescreen support alone. And if you decide to install mods, most popular mods work with ioRTCW so you can install them on top of that. I’m playing one right now called RealRTCW and it works great.
Honestly I don’t know if I would recommend this. It definitely aged better than Wolf3D, but unless you are really curious what you missed from that area, I wouldn’t recommend buying this today. If you already have it and want to try, ioRTCW is a must.
Hey, if you decide to browse my screenshots from TWD games, just know that I posted my choices from each episode, so there are spoilers! For some reason spoiler tag on steam is on for only 4 weeks so :/
Beaten 1st time on difficulty – N/A
TWD choice fix
I started this right after replaying Season 2. If it’s not obvious enough from the title, we play as Michonne from main comic/TV series “The Walking Dead” who at some point in show leaves Rick and others to deal with her personal issues. Despite being tied to the show, you don’t need to see it to play this, as this mini story is constructed in such a way that it might as well be a story of some random survivor. I encountered almost no mention of Michonne being in previous group and out of few I did, they came from one of dialogue options I choose. The friends, enemies, groups etc. are all new and Michonne is the only character from show.
However this game being a short story for a telltale game (only 3 episodes) it was difficult for me to get invested in this story and Michonne as it’s been years since I watched the show. Uninteresting and cliché characters didn’t help.
During her lone journey Michonne finds a new, small group that lives on a boat and they take her in. We start properly few weeks later, during the first 15-20 minutes we get introduced to the group and to game mechanics. If you played previous TWD games, you’ll find no new gameplay changes, it plays exactly the same. So it consists of QTE’s, picking dialogue options and sometimes you get a more impactful choice. One new and a very small thing you’ll notice is when killing walker the game likes to sometimes go into slow motion as Michonne hacks the walkers. If fits, as in the show she was a kind of badass and was very skilled with her katana, though in here she uses a machete. If I remember correctly from show, she gave her katana to Rick until she comes back.
The story pattern is the same as previous games. You meet a new group, you run into problems or other people, shit happens, you need to make choice that have an actual impact or just give you illusion that maybe you could have done something differently. This is fine as long as there are interesting characters and someone for you to care for, like Clementine was in S1 or AJ in Final Season. Here the characters are very generic and uninteresting. The leader of your new group is a positive guy with faith that everyone can be good and violence is usually unnecessary, there’s an evil tough guy who enjoys violence and few others boring characters. Like I mentioned above, the story is the same reused pattern from the show and previous TWD games. And because it’s condensed into a 4 hour game, shit happens fast and some characters die or disappear as soon as you meet them. Not much else to say.
I don’t know the backstory of how this game was made. I imagine someone from AMC or Kirkman himself approached Telltale if they could make this game. Who would say no to that? But they either had no idea what to do with already existing character or this was made by B team, because it’s pretty average.
Honestly, I wouldn’t recommend buying this, skip this one. Unless you happen to just started watching the TV show or comic, then maybe wait for a part where Michonne leaves and start this game. I know I said you don’t need to see main series to play this, but honestly it might be more enjoyable if you play this between episodes. Just don’t expect this to be as good as S1 or have same emotional impact.
Beaten 1st time on difficulty – N/A
TWD choice fix
Although it wasn’t as emotional to me as S1, it’s a solid season. This is a sort of continuation of Clementine’s story but mostly from perspective of a new character, Javi. I’m not sure about when it happens, but if I had to guess it’s set like a year or two after end of S2. Regardless of your ending in S2, Clementine gets separated from her group and later in time from AJ, who she tries to get back. In flashback scenes we get to play as Clementine and some choices impact what certain characters think about us in current time (or so it seems our choices had an impact – if you played and researched just a little bit of previous games you know how much illusion of choice is in previous TWD Telltale games). But most of our game is from Javi’s perspective. Javi is another survivor with his small group. They have a small van and they constantly move, never staying in one place for too long. Along with Javi there’s Kate, wife of his brother and her two kids – Gabriel and Mariana. Since David (brother) is not with them, Javi takes the role of father and Kate has feelings for Javi since they’ve been together on road for so long. Naturally it’s up to you what kind of relationship you want to have with Kate and her kids.
As expected, it doesn’t take long when shit hits the fan and you have to make choices to survive. You’re not going to make everyone happy and people will die. It doesn’t take long until we meet Clementine, it actually happens in episode 1 and we slowly learn what happened between now and end of S2 via flashbacks or what she tells us. She’s a little more grown up and tougher. But we will have flashback scenes for Javi too. We’ll learn about his past, what his brother and his relationship with Kate was, we get to choose how we treat him etc. Good stuff, we get to meet Javi before apocalypse. Other characters who we meet are no less interesting and having Clementine around, even if she’s no longer dependent on you like in S1, is nice and it’s interesting to see how she behaves and sometimes is even more mature than other adults. I’m not sure if her behavior is dependent on your choices from previous seasons, if you imported saves.
This TWD finally has some visual improvements. Cell shading is still present, but textures and models are of much better quality compared to S2. Big change, since S1 and S2 looked more or less the same. However facial animations while good, are still the same as in previous seasons. Characters sometimes snap from one facial expression to another in an instant. Another issue I had is lack of walker variation, I felt like I too often killed the walkers that looked the same in previous episodes. Since I just replayed S1 and S2, it happened there too but not as often as here. It’s a little annoying when you see the same walker being just fine when you stabbed him in the head 1 hour ago…
Gameplay is again, unchanged. QTE’s, dialogue choices, sometimes you get to wander in a location and get to talk to people or look at/pick up objects with a fixed camera hovering in corner. Since I replayed S1 and S2 before this and played Michonne before this, it was starting to get tiresome.
Another issue I noticed is that sometimes dialogue option turned out to be different, my character said something way different than I thought. Now it’s not that uncommon with games that give you a shortened response option, like Fallout 4 or Mass Effect, and even S1 and S2 had them too but I could them on a single hand in previous seasons, here I felt like it happened more often. Thankfully it didn’t happen during choices that really mattered but it was annoying regardless.
While solid, there’s no magic in here from S1. I liked it and wanted to see how story will unfold, but I didn’t had emotional attachment like I did in first season. While there are kids depending on Javi, they’re not later on and one of them well, I don’t want to spoil what happens.
Last addition to this mini-review, I looked up some choices and it is actually possible to have one character survive from ep1 to ep5! It’s a neat change, because usually characters are destined to die in specific episodes and scene. Or like in S1, you had a choice in first episode 1 who to choose and that character would stay until episode 3, but then regardless of your actions they would die in the same spot. Unfortunately for me, in this game I killed the character on first occasion lol. But here I need to complain again, because at one point in the game you are forced to pick who to kill. But then, 10-15 minutes later into the game, that character will die regardless of your actions or relationship with them. Makes the whole drama of “why did you choose me?!” completely pointless.
Definitely recommended if you liked previous seasons. It can be played without playing previous seasons, but I would also recommend playing them before this. There’s now a TWD: Definitive Series edition, which includes all Telltale TWD games, and S1 and S2 got visual upgrade, it looks worth buying if you want to play them and don’t own any games separately.