Bangledeschlers Completion Addiction. Bangledeschler’s profile

I’ve always been a completionist, and that remains true to this day. Amassing a large mountain of backlog to defeat I shall witness everything, save for the end…

Also, I am in a streaming group! Feel free to check a look and hang out with us! Screen Thieves
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September 2021
“It’s The Ones Who Don’t Look Like Bad Guys Who Are The Real Bad Guys.” - NMH3
“Always Stop By The Toilet If You Find One.” - NMH3
“Living every day, being exposed to the emotions of the masses, having to interact with other people even when you don’t want to. That cycle can really wear a person down. I wonder if from here in out this will change into some sort of lighter, easier form.” - The Silver Case

I’ll have to apologize in advance (partly to myself) as I had all the reviews written up in my head as I was beating them… but then I delayed and had to brute force it a bit. This is probably why some of them get pretty long as I try to reach for what I originally wanted to say.

Other than that Spooktober is finally here. As always some co-streamers and I stream spooky games every day of the month. It’s exciting to get to experience new scares with those that appreciate the genre. This duals as both an effective means to clear some backlog, but also keeps me incredibly busy. Here’s to hoping you all have a spooky (but safe) month of October.

Top Games this month:
No More Heroes 3 Currently my game of the year (Sorry RE8, you were great, but this was better)
BlazBlue: Chronophantasma Extend The VN Fighting series that just keeps getting better and better.
The Silver Case Suda51 making me fall in love all over again.

    Blades of Time

    Blades of Time

    7 hours playtime

    What if you combined a generic Lara Croft character with the visuals of Babydoll from Sucker Punch, the design of combined that with some writing and dialogue akin to Tommy Wiseau’s “The Room”, and finally made it into a hack-slash platformer? You would get Blades of Time.
    I’m going to start by saying that this game has a lot NOT going for it. The design of the character is reminiscent of early 2000’s female gaming stereotypes with a little over sexualization. Don’t get me wrong, I like playing/seeing hot people being hot in my video games (Lara Croft, Nathan Drake, Lady, Dante/Nero, etc.), but this seemed a little too much. You do get some costumes that make it a bit better, but overall bleh. The character is clearly inspired by Lara Croft as she is a treasure hunter with a British accent and even monologues like the most recent iteration of the famed Tomb Raider. This wouldn’t be so bad if the writing and the dialogue is awkward and just god awful. She often states the obvious or just weird random things to say to herself and her enemies. Not to mention the story is kind of hanging by just a thread with a fair share of holes and inconsistencies.
    Despite all this, the combat is actually pretty darn good. You start with a pretty basic hack-slash formula of basic/heavy attacks along with air combos, but slowly gain various other abilities such as burning and freezing your enemies. Various other skills are combined with these such as further immolation or giving your twin swords an element boost. You also have a rifle (though you can pick up some other two-handed guns) which you can more easily dispatch enemies from afar. Of course, you also have your standard dodge/slide and an air dash of sorts.
    However, the best mechanic of this game is the ability to rewind time. Somewhat similar to Prince of Persia, but still it’s own variation. You yourself do not follow the reverse in time. Instead you will stand there and watch as everything else around you rewind. Enemies, their health, any objects. This also means you do not get any health back. The cool part about this is that when time starts back up, you will have a clone that follows through the actions up to the point that you started the rewind. Doing this multiple times gives you a plethora of clones stacking damage and giving your current self a damage multiplier. This is useful for breaking shields, creating combos, and performing awesome finishers. This is also important because they will be needed not just for combat but puzzles as well.
    Visually the game looks pretty good and has you go through a bit of diverse locales. Enemies vary decently both in gameplay and design. Nothing crazy great, but decent.
    Lewd? The outfit and hair of MC is a bit much, but other than that, no.
    Recommend? Despite all the bad, this gameplay is still pretty fun and would recommend this. You can skip the DLC though, it is more of the same without all of the cool powers and more annoying level design.

    BlazBlue: Chronophantasma Extend

    BlazBlue: Chronophantasma Extend

    21 hours playtime

    Every BlazBlue game just gets better and better. A bigger sequel than Continuum Shift Extend, this one takes all the pieces that were placed in the two previous games and finally sets them in place. The anime cutscenes have considerably more work put into them (though they are still fairly rare), sprite work looks amazing, combat keeps a lot of the solid groundwork built from past and adds a little speck of improvements, and a full roster that very nearly includes all of the characters we have seen so far.
    For a 2D fighting game that has yet to dip it’s toes into the weird 3Dish cosmetic that SF and KoF have starting to take, it looks pretty damn good. Again, sprites are clean, solid defining colors, and well-done animations.
    The main story is now a little more streamlined in that you follow three main branches of story instead of a bunch of individual character trees. Each branch represents an individual story which connects to the other two. This means there are points where you will come to a roadblock as it waits for you to catch up with the other two. This is extremely necessary as everything may not make sense immediately in the solo scenario. I think with a game that has such a complicated and terminology heavy game such as BlazBlue this can make understanding a bit all the better. If you are still confused, they have the anthology chapters for the previous two games, “Help Me Miss Litchi” program makes a return with the chibi poorly drawn characters, but informative review, and a Library section that lists all the characters and terminology. As always, there is arcade mode and each character get their own additional story, but they seem to mostly be small and short events that mostly have nothing to do with the overarching story (if they are canon at all).
    The “Extend” portion of the game includes an additional 3 side branches that help expand events and characters that may have only been touched upon in the main scenarios. Of course, there are a plethora of gag endings and Extend gag chapters to give a much needed and well-earned laugh. The extra chapters don’t stop there as there is a side side story that deals with a genderbent character attending the school. It is fairly slice of life, short, and has an overarching mystery.
    As stated previously, the roster is bigger and better than ever. Characters we have seen in the past make their return and debut in the fighting arena as well as totally new entries. It does seem like most of the new entries, however, don’t do much for the actual story, sadly. Not a terrible thing. Not everyone can be an important piece, but you have to wonder how some of them fit in at all. Still, I was happy to try out some new characters, and learn more about them as I dive deeper into the knowledge seither.
    Favorite Characters: Noel (once my main, always my main), Bullet (lover her rushdown), and Kagura (he really grows on ya, and interesting stances).
    Lewd? Definite suggestive language, scenarios, etc. Spectacles of Eros make a return
    Recommend? Yes! A Fighting Visual Novel series that is in my top fighting game list. This, so far, seems to be the best yet.

    Crash Bandicoot™ N. Sane Trilogy

    Crash Bandicoot™ N. Sane Trilogy

    10 hours playtime

    I was feeling a bit nostalgic and decided to go down memory lane that faintly smelled like Pizza Hut Pizza.
    It was interesting to see the visual changes, what was once a mass of spiky polygons was now furry and smooth. Visually this game is stunning, from character/enemy designs to the levels and effects they provide. A blend of cartoon and realism in a singular wumpa fruit box. The gameplay is still very much of the same with some minor issues. Some edges seem extra slippery, which, in a game where precision jumping is often key, this can cause some issues. Once you learn to jump a little early, however, this problem becomes less of an issue.
    If you haven’t played or seen Crash Bandicoot before, it is a platformer that has you go through various levels in order to stop the evil doctor s Neo Cortex, his minions, and other great evils. The levels differ wildly as they can have you in a variety of perspectives. Either you are running forth into a multipath level, side-scrolling levels, or even running towards the camera as Crash frantically runs from a great danger all the way until the level exit. It’s a lot of fun and keeps you on your toes as to not miss any jumps, avoid enemies, and collect any wumpa fruit/collectibles you find along the way. As a wee Bandicoot, you will find you are frail, taking any amount of damage can put you in a (somewhat humorous) death animation. The best way to avoid this is by collecting shaman masks which follow you and take a hit for you. Consecutive masks will give you more hits to take, and on the third will give you brief invulnerability. Boss battles are fairly straight forward as you figure out the enemy’s gimmick, do the thing that damages him (sometimes hit him or an item around them), rinse, increase boss difficulty, and repeat until defeated.
    Games in 2 and 3 do add more to the series as they go. This includes some racing levels, gained abilities, water levels/vehicles, and the ability to play as the cool lovable sister of Crash, Coco. I will say Crash does look a little goofier with his updated looks. So, despite gameplay is the same, I really liked playing as Coco. She’s cool, adorable, and has some sick dance end of level dance moves.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Absolutely, getting over some minor issues you can find that this game has a lot to offer to both old and new fans alike.

    DEATHLOOP

    DEATHLOOP

    19 hours playtime

    Decided to get this as I both enjoy Dishonored and wanted to enjoy the online experience while it was still fresh.
    Play Colt, an amnesiac stuck on an island filled with people that want to kill him. Whether they succeed or not doesn’t really matter because come end of day… the day loops back and he is back to waking up at the beach with his inventory emptied and only his notes to help him figure out the mystery of the loop. Even all of this wasn’t already bad enough, there is also Julianna who is not only aware of the loop, but is absolutely determined to kill you each time so that you cannot break the loop. What’s more is that Julianna is played by another player, effectively invading your world. This means no AI to exploit, only you versus someone who has the same if not more information and abilities/guns than you. The one benefit you have over Julianna is that in each area, you get three lives while they only have one. Other than that, it is a matter of using the abilities and weapons you find to take them and the Visionaries out.
    The game plays out like this. You have four times of the day and can explore one of four sites during those times. Certain events and people can only be found during those times. Slowly figure out how you break the loop by visiting these at all times of days and once you do figure that out, do it within one day cycle. Normally, you lose everything (guns, abilities, etc) when the loop happens. However, you gain the ability to infuse weapons/abilities so that you can keep them for future playthroughs. This is key, but not necessary. Guns are fairly standard, and the abilities you get are fairly similar to those in the Dishonored series. As always you have sneak and full assault options and a multitude of access points. If there’s one thing the Dishonored team does well, it is level design, and this is true for Deathloop as well. There are almost always a few different routes and solutions to the same problem and can give you a sense of uniqueness in playthroughs of the game.
    The story is pretty good, but the writing and dialogue is pretty fun. Colt feels like a real person with perfect reactions to the situations he’s in. He doesn’t just blow off a close encounter, he swears and gets freaked out. He tells himself jokes and tries (but often fails) quips back at Julianna. He really feels like a real person and it’s great. The banter between him and Julianna is fun and it is the filler for a lot of the time transitions. Other characters in the world also have very defining personalities from the strong identities of the Visionaries even down to some of the random enemies who walk around and have chats/unrelated story lines.
    Lewd? Nope, only suggested themes.
    Recommend? Yes, I quite enjoyed this game. Being able to play through Colt’s story or play as Julianna and stop Colt’s progress is both fun. I assume that the actual amount of invasions will decrease rapidly over time due to player base decline.

    Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet

    Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet

    3 hours playtime

    A very enjoyable metroidvania that has you pilot a traditional UFO ship to go through (wait for it) an Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet. This planet seems to send off corrupting objects to other worlds and it is your job to traverse inside of it and stop it. Inside this planet are dark tendrils and creatures to stop you. Find various upgrades to stop them and unlock new paths/puzzles. There are also various collectibles that help tell the story of this planet which provides the only context in the game.
    Traversing the planet is fairly smooth, the map is not all that complicated so finding your next destination is easy, and all of the gadgets you find are either interesting and/or fun. Combat is relatively simple as you have one laser (can be upgraded) but it is more important to learn how each enemy attacks and reacts. Of course, your other gadgets may be able to be used in combat such as a directional shield. Bosses are both of interesting design and enjoyable gameplay. Most puzzles are clear in what you can interact with and able to be logically figured out (there was only one that I needed to look up, I’m also probably just dumb).
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes!

    LEGO® Harry Potter: Years 5-7

    LEGO® Harry Potter: Years 5-7

    11 hours playtime
    no achievements

    More of the same in the Lego series. Go through the story from the Order of the Phoenix to the Deathly Hallows from the Harry Potter series (movie focused). Use your team of wizards/witches to use the spells semi-unique to them to solve puzzles and fight.
    The good: It’s a simple game, using general gestures and sounds from characters to build the narrative in a somewhat humorous way). The combat is usually very generic, just cast spell at enemy = win. There are boss fights where you enter duels with another wizard/witch. This entails of you matching their spell color with your own.
    The bad: It may be my experience with Lego games, but I tire of the absolutely immense amount of characters to unlock/play. It seems so bad in this game that you have multiple variations of the same character (which is mostly clothing). I’ve also noticed that this game can be quite buggy/glitchy as there were more than a few times an object or person becoming stuck when it shouldn’t be. Furthermore, some puzzles/solutions just really are not apparent and could use further instructions or visual hints to benefit the player. Lastly, the duel idea is cool for bosses, but not only overused but poorly implemented. Despite facing a multitude of bosses, you are fighting them in the same way. Match the color, cast it, mash repeat. Occasionally they will throw objects at you that you will have to throw back. It is all so repetitive. What’s worse is that the duels are done poorly as they don’t give the user much time to switch spells, the water one in particular is almost instantaneous on the AI side.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Meh, generally no unless you have a fix for more Lego wizardry.

    Little Nightmares

    Little Nightmares

    7 hours playtime

    Play as a small yellow raincoat being that lives in a world of giants (or we really are just that small). The atmosphere radiates horror and the giant pursuers/humans you see give off a very Tim Burton vibe. You must platform and solve puzzles in order to make your escape. Note there is no dialogue, but rather it is told through actions and surroundings. Along the way you will find other small beings, Nomes, that run-in fear of 0everything around them. That is until you sneak up on them and hug the heck out of them for a much-needed palate cleansing wholesome moment. The amazing visuals and general designs really do create the atmosphere that helps give you unease as you escape your pursuers. As you progress, you will learn what exactly Little Nightmares is about.
    The DLC is also fairly great and just as creepy (for me) as the main game. You will play as a different shaggier small kid(?) who must make their way to escape as well. You’ll revisit some familiar areas and often explore entirely new ones with new horrors.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes! Puzzles were often very logical, atmosphere is spooky, and the story really was a constant unexpected turn of events.

    The Silver Case

    The Silver Case

    14 hours playtime

    Every time I play a Suda51 game that I have never encountered before, it becomes my favorite over the rest and fall in love with him and his developer’s storytelling and weird game play. If you are more of a new age Suda fan, you’re experience with him is probably mostly through hack and slash games such as No More Heroes and Lollipop Chains. The Silver Case is a bit different as it released well before all of that and it is primarily an adventure VN. Between Visual Novel cutscenes and dialogue, you can move your character in several directions, interact with objects you are looking at, and solve some minor puzzles. Each chapter has you taking on a different case, but are all connected somehow with Kamui, a well-known serial killer who has a major cult following. You play as a survivor of Kamui, originally part of a special forces team and joins the Heinous Crime Unit to solve these cases and the overall mystery. There is also a side story that ties in with the main, each side chapter unlocking after you complete the next main segment. Instead of playing as your main character, you play a journalist who often runs into the HCU with his investigations. This side, though a bit dryer gameplay wise, does well to further explore the scenarios and world in this game.
    The visuals do well to create each character to seem really life like as well as create their character’s personality with just a glance before you get into their looks. Not to mention the atmosphere each drawn scene creates fits the theme/mood it is trying to convey. The writing continues to build the characters and the world around you while maintaining a level of believability. The gameplay itself can be a little varied, a little complicated, and sometimes bland, but it has its own charm that I really grew to love. Finally, the music, holy heck the music. Even just hovering over a chapter gives you a unique song that I instantly needed to put into my collection. Anything from the music from a specific scene or chapter, to the transitioning music were pleasant to the ears and bridged each section beautifully.
    Lewd? Kinda, mildly suggestive themes.
    Recommend? Very much so. This just very well be one of my top 3 Suda51/Grasshopper Manufacture games, and seeing all the references in his later games to this makes me love both more.

    Dead by Daylight

    Dead by Daylight

    522 hours playtime

    I’ve already reviewed this before, so I’ll skip the majority of the game and just go over my experience since then.
    Undoubtedly, I can say I enjoyed this game. At the beginning, I was fortunate enough to get kind players and generally welcoming experience. However, over time the toxicity bubbled through and you get the worst part of the multiplayer experience… the other people. Post-game chat brings the worst out as people complain over reasonable actions, unreasonable actions, and things that are entirely irrelevant. Calling cheating, not cheating, derogatory terms, all to the point where I have had players comment on my Steam profile.

    Past the verbal issues, we then run into a huge problem… actual cheaters. I’ve personally run into a number of users who actually teleport from the locker to other locations, to the point where I could actually surmise and watch as they teleport to their new location. I’ve also been on the Survivor side where fellow survivors are travelling at the speed of light. There’s supposedly a team at Behavior who handles these things, but I consistently see the same hacks over and over, often robbing me of a good game and/or achievement.

    When it is not cheaters breaking the game… it is Behavior itself. There are still a constant number of bugs and issues that the game experiences. This includes survivors getting hit without actually taking damage (their character yells, blood appears on their screen, yet no actual damage has occurred), some doorways/textures cause issues interacting with various objects and/or moving. Not to mention questionable buffs, nerfs, and changes.

    Alright, with the negativity aside, I do still genuinely enjoy this game. It is still growing with new content being added, older content being remade to look and play better, and a player base that still has a shining light of hope to be better with those that are there to just enjoy the game and support each other.

    Achievements are plenty and some are downright ridiculous (Mike Myers Tier 3 with 4 kills nearly drove me made), but once you get caught up it is fairly easy roads… until they release an achievement that is broken…

    Favorite Killers: Trickster (Oh My God He’s Hot), The Shape (Evil Tier 1 sneaky), Ghost Face, The Spirit.
    Least Favorite Killers to play: Twins, Trapper, Hillbilly.
    Least Favorite Killers (to face): The Cannibal (100% chance of Facecamp), Oni, Clown.

    Lewd? Nope, but boop that snoot.
    Recommend? Yes, Behavior and the games player base can cause issues for the game at times, but I still can jump into a game at any point and generally have a great time.

    Elise the Devil

    Elise the Devil

    9 hours playtime
    no achievements

    Originally a lewdy RPG (and still is, patch needed) where you, a great devil lord, starts off by being defeated by the heroes. In your weakened state you revert to a cute female human form and must go on a quest to become more powerful and defeat the hero who bested you.

    Despite the potential lewd and machine translation, the game actually has a decent story and plot development. Your character can make choices, develop as a character, and show various emotions and interactions with others. Combat is fairly standard classic JRPG.

    Lewd? Yes
    Recommend? Yes, okay combat, good story, great scenes.

    The Ship

    The Ship

    1 minute playtime
    no achievements
    The Ship Single Player

    The Ship Single Player

    2 hours playtime
    no achievements

    Kind of a puzzle game similar to that of Lucius. The game is setup in chapters where you must figure out how to escape the once cruise now turned murder game. Essentially go to quest holder, find objective, learn how to complete objective, don’t get caught. There really isn’t much more to say about it.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? The game is okay, but not necessarily fun. I believe the multiplayer variation is a little more interesting though likely dead as heck.

Demon’s Souls Remake
PS5
Demon’s Souls was at the bottom of my Soulsborne ranking back when I played the PS3 version last year(?) and this is still true for this game. To first note, I do generally like it and the remake really is amazing. The game is smooth, it looks beautiful, multiplayer is available, and there are some decent areas. The problem lies more in the base constructions of Demon’s Souls that was always there. Some areas just absolutely suck, and it really hasn’t changed for the better in this. In fact, most of the areas are harder than 90% of the bosess. This is also, in part, due to the fact that most of the bosses are gimmick based. Meaning there is no challenge to them once you know their quirk. Gimmick bosses are good occasionally and/or if they are just well done gimmicks. I would not say this is true for most of the bosses here. What’s worse is that the gimmick bosses that were innately easy for some reason had some of their abilities taken away. For instance, the very blind and way too big for his own good Old Hero. He already can barely find you and most of his attacks missed. However, he used to have a projectile attack at the end of some of his swings that could still get you. This has been removed in the remake.

Other issues with the game (again revert to original issues) is the multiplayer and the tendency system. The tendency system works like this. If you are in human form and die in a world, that world’s tendency goes a shade darker. This gives enemies more health, more damage, more enemy spawns, but better chance to drop better loot. You can only make the world lighter by defeating bosses, killing specific black phantoms (only appear in darkest tendency), colorless demons (only appear in darkest tendency), or killing invaders. As such lighter tendency makes enemies weaker. Both lightest and darkest world tendency can unlock secret events/areas. This means the worse you are at the game, you struggle more. It’s likely the true precursor to the “Git Gud” mentality and laugh as those that suffer… suffer more while everyone else sits on their pure white tendency thrones. Now, getting darker tendency only happens if you die human (which means you have full health max), however if you stay in soul form (around half original health max) you won’t get hurt, but you are already challenging yourself as is. The only way to get Human form is eating an item (fairly rare), defeating a boss, invading and defeating a player, or assisting someone else defeat a boss. This is where it gets really dumb. YOU CAN ONLY INVADE OR ASSIST A PLAYER IF YOU ARE IN SOUL FORM. This means if you are trying to help a friend through the game or just want a pure multiplayer experience, you have to be in soul form. This also means after every successful invasion or assist, you have to kill yourself to go back to soul form. There is one last tendency that only matters, kind of, and that is character tendency. Similar to World Tendency, your character can become lighter or darker if he kills black phantoms or regular NPCs. The character tendency affects your soul form/human form health and can create a couple of events.

Improvements on the game such as sending items to the storage from anywhere, multi-directional rolling, new items, mirror world (flips the level design), etc. make this a proper remake. It is only a shame that they couldn’t fill that final archestone for a little bit of extra content.

Lewd? Nope
Recommend? I would say everyone should probably experience this once. It may be my least liked Soulsborne, but it is still good.

No More Heroes III
Nintendo Switch
This is the reason I bought a Switch in the first place. Well, that Bayonetta 2 &3, and Deadly Premonitions 2. Still, it is no light thing to say that Travis Touchdown is a huge influence on the deciding factor of this console, and it was well worth the wait. Taking place after Travis Strikes Again, it seems aliens calling themselves Heroes have invaded the Earth and are welcoming challengers as they have now been ranked in the assassination ranking. Travis, looking a little worse for the wear steps up to the plate with a few tricks up his sleeve. Of course, he has his trusty, but, new and improved beam saber to take down these viral visitors of the third kind.

The gameplay is absolutely wonderful. It combines the traditional hack and slash we see from 1&2, but also includes the abilities (dropkick, slowdown field, etc.) from TAS. We also get a similar enemy variety that we saw in TAS, meaning battles are much more diverse and exciting. You’ll have to learn what each enemy does, strategize who to take out first, and what the best method of execution is. Boss fights are killer as always each with their own gimmicks that don’t necessarily define them, but definitely play a part in a battle. Each boss is unique and an enjoyable experience. In order to fight bosses, you need to pay the proper fight fee. You earn money by fighting and doing part time jobs. Part time jobs are mini games, more akin to NMH1, but a lot more enjoyable. Leveling up is a bit different as Travis no longer needs to hit the gym, but uses points he earns in battles and challenges to increase his stats which includes health, attack, recharge, abilities, etc. We also see the return of chips that enhance abilities or mechanics, but these have to be crafted. You get three slots and chips do not get directly upgraded.

A E S T H E T I C. This game has a lot of that and it is so very awesome. Even from the first beam attack, to surreal cutscenes, and just designs all around. We see a lot of 80’s design and references too, such as when introducing the full cast of ranked aliens they are all presented as 80’s action figures in an (redundant) 80’s commercial with a slightly fuzzy filter and all. I cannot stress enough how cool and great this game looks and feels. Continuing aesthetics, Travis once again gets to buy shirts, though buy is a strong term. There are alien vendors that require you to do certain challenges to earn the shirt they currently offer before moving onto the next shirt. All of the looks of the shirts/outfits are so cool that I wish I could buy them in real life. Unfortunately, Suda/Grasshopper do not plan to manufacture these, but I’m sure someone out there will take my money in exchange.
Speaking of aesthetic, let’s talk about music aesthetic (not really sure if that makes sense). The bottom line is that the music is amazing. It’s not just the boss tracks, it is all the tracks in the game. They stick out, each area’s music fits the theme perfectly, shop music gets you pumped, fight music pumps you further, and an OST needs to be released so I can add it to my collection. Please Suda, just take my money already.

In case you were worried, the writing, story, and dialogue are all very No More Heroes right to the bone. Travis is still very much Travis, and his interactions with all of his enemies/allies are so very fitting. The game is funny when it wants to be and serious when it needs to be. Hype moments are exciting, and everything feels perfectly in place. There are also numerous callbacks/cameos/references to all of the NMH games as well as some of Suda’s other work (such as The Silver Case).

Lewd? Suggestive themes, but nothing crazy.

Recommend? Very much YES! This game really is the culmination and cumulation of the series. It takes all of the good ideas/mechanics from each game and makes them even better. This game very much benefits fans of the series, but can still be enjoyed by newcomers as well.

August 2021
“How many more bones will you crush? How many lives will you destroy in pursuit of what you call justice? You are the product of everything you fear. Violence… Darkness… Helplessness… All that remains is for you to watch as I drag your beloved Gotham into oblivion.” - Batman: Arkham Knight
“You’re a third rate duelist with a fourth rate deck!” - Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links

I’m not particularly sure what to say for this update. I’ve been pretty busy on self improvement. This includes losing 10 lbs, gaining muscle, and learning new skills (such as animation). Naturally this has taken away from my general game and backlog killing. Despite this, October is sure to be a very busy month and excited to see what it has in store.

    Batman: Arkham Knight

    Batman: Arkham Knight

    44 hours playtime

    After a lot of criticisms and (understandably) poor release for PC, it was a little hard to start this game despite having played and enjoyed it on console. Even with a lot of the negativity behind this, I can still say that playing it again was very nice return to the end of the series. If you aren’t aware, this is game 4 of the Arkham series and direct sequel to game 2 Arkham City.
    Gameplay is very much consistent with the series as you will largely deal with freeflow combat and use various gadgets to do so. When you are not fighting, you will be using said gadgets to traverse various areas. The biggest addition to this is the Batmobile. You will not only use this to travel across the city, but solve some puzzles, participate in tank battles, and even assist in regular hand to hand combat with remote actions. The batmobile was probably one of the most controversial aspects of the game outside of any performance issues. The issues I have heard are the amount of batmobile gameplay you will need to incorporate, specifically tank battles. It didn’t bother me too much, but if it isn’t something you don’t like it may cause some weariness.
    The story is pretty solid and fairly dramatic with the high stakes Scarecrow has provided the city along with being the final entry. Graphically, the game does look amazing as It is still pretty recent. There were some issues with minor clipping but fairly unnoticeable if you are not looking for it. I’ve only had one crash and that was due to my trying out some NVIDIA settings.
    DLC: The dlc contains a few additional stories. Some of which are accessible in main game while others are standalone. They are all incredibly short and generally okay, but I did really enjoy the Cold Heart story. Every other DLC addition is either cosmetics (costumes/batmobile skins) or challenge room/characters for AR challenges. These challenges are either predator missions with the goal to sneak and take out the enemies with cunning and silence. The other challenges are pure combat where you must dispatch your foes while maintaining high combos and scores with variations. If you are going to get any of the DLC, I do highly recommend getting the Season Pass as you will get all the DLC available for the game for a steal.
    Lewd? Nope, save for a few spandex or leafy butts. ;)
    Recommend? Yes, especially for those who enjoyed the rest of the series or Batman in general.

    Contraption Maker

    Contraption Maker

    17 hours playtime

    A puzzle game that gives you a goal, some set pieces, and a tray of tools that you can use in order to achieve said goal. The pieces you can get sometimes be rotated or flipped depending on the piece type as well offers a button to inform you what each piece does. Puzzles are grouped in packs that tend to dictate a theme or difficulty, though I felt some puzzles in harder difficulties were easier than ones in previous packs.
    This game is pretty decent but got old pretty fast. The actual puzzles and physics work fairly well. Graphically, it wasn’t to my appeal as the cartoony designs just didn’t suit my taste.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Not really, at least for my tastes. It is a genuinely decent puzzle game, but can look pretty chaotic and messy with everything set in place.

    Double Dragon Neon

    Double Dragon Neon

    3 hours playtime

    A classic beat-em-up in the modern day. If you are new to the Double Dragon series (just as I) it tends to center around two playable twins fighting against opposing forces. In this case the Shadow Warriors gang, led by super-lich Skullmageddon, who steal Marian (a love interest?). This game is pretty much a nostalgia trip of the 80’s and classic beat-em-ups as it has all the tropes and very self aware. You’ve got your 80’s synth wave music, neon lights, classic dojo settings along with over the top transitions and map variances, cassette tapes, etc. Even Skullmageddon is easily a reference to Skeletor.
    The combat is solid and the dialogue and scenarios, comedic.
    Lewd? No. There may be a cast of Dominatrix, but they are here purely for business of beating your butt.
    Recommend? Yes, especially for those who have an appreciate for Beat-Em-Ups and the 80s.

    FORCED

    FORCED

    4 hours playtime

    1-4 player action RPG. This game pits you to face a set of trials. There are 4 unique weapons that dictate your available skills along with basic attacks as well as control an orb by drawing it to you in order to solve puzzles or activate buffs. Essentially you have to complete a set of triasl before facing a boss, defeat the main bosses of the game to face the final champion and gain a sort of freedom for your tribe.
    Gameplay is pretty simplistic and definitely urges co-op functionality. Despite this, the game is very completable on your own, so no need to worry if you have no friends available.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, this game offers an enjoyable experience in both combat and puzzles.

    GALAK-Z

    GALAK-Z

    7 hours playtime

    Episodic SHMUP that centers around a surviving pilot that gained access to an experimental ship and must work with the remaining survivors to get back to Earth. Combat largely revolves around your ability to fly your ship and shoot at opposing space bugs, bandits, and enemy factions. There is a dodge functionality, boost, and an array of upgrades for your ship including the ability to mod your ships bullet spreads, effects, etc. Find scrap to purchase these upgrades (when available) or find them out in the field. The biggest grievance to this is that you can mostly only purchase between chapters and you can only buy 1 health restoration per unique visit. If you have a rough time, you are really going to need to play more careful because there is not much getting back. You can find health out in the field, but it is rare.
    Despite being a space pilot, you will seldom actually be in open space as you will enter various “dungeons” which will either be giant space rocks or destroyed ships. Once you enter, the areas will provide a segmented map with a rough area of where you are and maybe a destination. If lost, you will have a cursor pointing you in the correct direction.
    Each episode consists of several chapters, and every episode has you starting with your upgrades wiped, but reimburses somewhat with scrap to get them back. The story, for the most part, is whatever. It really does just service as a way to give reason for you to go through the missions. Dialogue is pretty well done though along with the writing. The animation leaves a little bit to be desired, but it does seem to be an artistic choice rather than just a lack of effort.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, genuinely enjoyed this game and it offered refreshing surprises to limit the games staleness. It is to note the game feels as if it ends somewhat abruptly, though the game did not overstay it’s welcome at least.

    Painkiller: Resurrection

    Painkiller: Resurrection

    7 hours playtime
    no achievements

    My distaste for Painkiller simply does not cease. This is another fan-made addition to the series still on the original engine with a new protagonist. You play Bill, a hired assassin who gets a guilty heart and ends up dead from his own deeds. Stuck in Limbo, he must battle to try and find his way out with the help of an angel on his shoulder.
    The gameplay is much of the same as the rest with some slight adjustments to the order of guns he carries which more reflect Daniel’s kit more so than Belial’s. The story and cinematics are very close to that of Max Payne as they are done in a comic book style with gritty visuals and heavy monologues. I experienced a lot of the same issues I had in the previous expansion with insanely long load times and crashes. The maps were far bigger than the previous games, a little too big, and had a major issue where spawning into the 4th chapter caused me to fall through the map.
    Recommend? Nope, once again I failed to enjoy an entry in the series. Both gameplay is okay at best with a lot of performance issues.

    Painkiller: Redemption

    Painkiller: Redemption

    5 hours playtime
    no achievements

    Same old engine, same old problems. Initially, this game showed promise as the load times and performance issues seemed to be nil an issue. However, a new problem arose, the gameplay. Previously the games were relatively horde based, but they varied in their spawns, enemies, and map designs. This game has you flooded with enemies from very few spawn points, in tight but very plain areas. To make matters worse, once you deal with that horde you take a few steps and another horde event initiates. This continues throughout the entire level, for every level of the game. This repetition not only got ridiculous and boring, but was far too cruel and unenjoyable.
    The story takes place after the events of the previous games where now Daniel and Belial work together to fight the demonic armies. All the story is told through words on a static background before throwing you back into the mess of the maps.
    Recommend? Nope, same dislike of the games, new problems.

    Painkiller: Recurring Evil

    Painkiller: Recurring Evil

    3 hours playtime
    no achievements

    This game sort of happens in tandem of Redemption, but we return as Bill from Resurrection. Betrayed and alone, Bill must face his betrayer. This game is pretty much the exact same functionally as Redemption and thus has all the same problems. Can’t walk two steps without initiating a horde sequence. Horde events confine you to small areas with repeating limited spawn points, generally boring map design. See Redemption review for more details.
    Recommend? Nope.

    Painkiller Hell & Damnation

    Painkiller Hell & Damnation

    4 hours playtime

    It’s hard to believe we actually got a Painkiller game on a new and different engine than the last 5 titles. Yet… the game is effectively a remake of the first original despite continuing the story. We once again play as Daniel who must go through most of the maps of the original, facing most of the bosses from the original while working for Death.
    Graphically and performance wise, this game looks and plays well… well mostly. The designs of the characters still looks a bit rough. We do get a new addition to our arsenal. A gun that shoots saw blades, absorbs souls, and can possess enemies to fight on our side.
    Recommend? Despite being the best in the series, I am going to say no. For the most part, this game still lacks so much and remains very unimaginative with the story and gameplay.

    Slime Rancher

    Slime Rancher

    11 hours playtime

    A nice little comfy game to lose track in as you suck in happy little slimes of many varieties and imprison them on your ranch. Not that it seems they mind. You are a newly formed rancher who seemed to have crossed the galaxy to find new beginnings on this farm. Your general goal is to build fences to house slimes, store slimes, grow/collect food, and feed slimes so they give you special slime gems to sell. Repeat ad nauseum. The more money you get means the better containments you can build, abilities for yourself, and unlock new areas with new slimes.
    Feeding slimes other slime gems can cause them to mutate, but beware as feeding an advanced slime a third gem can cause them to turn to a horrifying blob that threatens you and your slimes. Each slime has their own preferences for food, and attributes including water, lava, fairy, etc. Each one produces their own kind of gem which vary in value. However, the gems work like a stock market and selling to much of a specific gem can lower it’s value over a short period of time.
    There is a deeper story to this and you will learn as much as you receive emails and explore the land. To be honest, I couldn’t really care for it especially for the background romance story of your character that it was trying to force on you. I don’t care if my ex misses me, I’m here to farm some slimes dammit. Without this, and even with it, the gameplay loop can get pretty old pretty fast. As you start to hit critical mass, there isn’t much for you to do and maintaining the ranch can seem taxing. The game does try to refresh and create new opportunities once it introduces fabrication. Fabrication allows you to use gems and newly introduced resources to create a number of inventions. This gives you new venues to sink your money and resources into. Unfortunately, I could care less what most of the inventions did, and the time and rarity of the new resources was too much of a hassle to make any of it worth it.
    Recommend? Generally yes, but it (for me) was very much of a short term game as the repetition gets old fast.

    Viscera Cleanup Detail

    Viscera Cleanup Detail

    50 hours playtime

    Though there is some catharsis release in planning out a cleaning routine for each map you visit. I gotta say, I still don’t like cleaning much even in the virtual world. As I progressed, I slowly formed overall strategies on how to take on each viscera filled horror map, and felt somewhat satisfied at a job well done. However, this quickly turns into a sickness as you feverishly use the sniffer to find the last few spots you overlooked.
    My issues with the game revolve largely around some of the surprise mechanics of the game, likely my solo play, and just some general map design. The surprise mechanics include randomly getting body parts out of dispenser machines for your water buckets. It’s entertaining at first despite the frustration, but once your on your 10+ map, it’s just an inconvenience you wish you could turn off (especially when it occurs 5 times in a row). I’m sure this game is far more enjoyable with friends as you can laugh off someone spilling a bucket of dirty water or making a mess along with just having a potentially more efficient session. Lastly, some of the maps are just god awful to deal with, especially when it wants you to meld bullet holes off of low-resolution rock walls/cliffs. Who cares if there is a man-made crack in a cliff? It’s going to affect my rating if I don’t fix it though, so let me just stare at it until I can finally figure out which crack is the one I fix and which one is going to cause me to accidently burn the area again. I did however really appreciate the classic slasher horror map completely filled with obvious references.
    Recommend? Kinda? I’d probably play it with friends if available and there is undoubtedly good maps that you can get a good cathartic release, but it really wasn’t something I could constantly return to after cleaning each map.

    Yakuza Kiwami

    Yakuza Kiwami

    44 hours playtime

    First game of the series remade with mechanics and more focus from Yakuza 0. Unlike 0, you will be playing solely as Kiryu as he walks the streets 17 years after the events of 0. With this being more focused on Kiryu, we get a much more streamlined story. We, of course, get the return of Majima as a sort of rival for Kiryu as he has nothing better to do but to find ways to get into Kiryu’s way. Though I would not say as impactful as 0, the story is still pretty tense with plenty of heavy dramatic scenarios and events. Oddly enough, there is a lot of relations this game’s story has with the movie Die Hard.
    Combat is pretty similar to that of 0. Kiryu still has his 4 available styles of combat and most fights are done in a brawl sort of format. The skill tree to unlock skills is much more simplified as we no longer require exorbitant amounts of money to level up, but rather experience points you get from fighting or completing quests. The one bad trade off is that there are some skills that are kind of hidden, but the game gives you a tutorial on them at the beginning of the game. This lead me to believe they were unlocked considering they seemed to be a part of a crucial mechanic involving heat actions. Heat actions are back to offer great heavy hitting finishing moves both with and without objects. On this topic, the heat gauge is much more manageable as skills no longer require crazy precise circumstances to use.
    Of course, Yakuza is very much about the side quests and minigames. There are a lot of returning minigames, including bowling, bat cages, and most importantly pocket car racing (among others). If the main quests have you feeling a bit down, there are plenty of side quests as well that often lead to either crazy, humorous, or just plain wholesome events.
    Lewd? Kind of yeah. Between the Mesuking minigame (video game girls dressed in revealing bug costumes), and some risqué live actions scenes (side quest) this could make a nose bleed or two. Plus you do have muscled out Yakuza shirtless fighting in the streets. Something for everybody
    Recommend? Very much yes. Despite having a more straightforward and somewhat lesser impactful moments, the game is still amazing in both combat and story. Very excited to start Kiwami 2.

    South Park The Fractured But Whole

    South Park The Fractured But Whole

    38 hours playtime

    Once again, we return to the virtual game of South Park. Sequel to Stick of Truth, this game returns with a focus on character customization, RPG elements, open world exploration, and the South Park humor we have grown with and love. No longer are we in a world of fantasy and myth, but that of superheroes. You get to pick your class of hero which gives you your set of moves. The cool thing is later you get to swap out moves for the potential multi-class system.
    Despite continuing RPG based combat this game does not use the same simplified turn-based combat from the previous game. Instead it’s more of a tactical turn-based RPG as you must maneuver your team on a board and execute your moves to both deal damage without exposing your units to get destroyed in return. Some moves can cause status effects as well as push/pull enemies to execute more damage if they hit another character in the process. Additionally, your character has a secret power, the power of farts! These time bending farts give you the extra edge in battle and can consist of a multitude of abilities.
    It really is nice to come to these kinds of games from time to time. It has the interaction of a game, but I also get to turn my brain of and just enjoy a comical established show. It really helps that the transitions between gameplay and cutscene are seamless. Combat is so much more enjoyable this time around since it is more than just single moves and pure QTEs. The tactical movements and attack areas give you something more to strategize.
    Lewd? Somewhat, but nothing explicit.
    Recommend? The story does seem to waver a bit more and I could care less for the crafting, but still enjoyed this through and through.

    Streets Of Kamurocho

    Streets Of Kamurocho

    32 minutes playtime
    no achievements

    I didn’t realize it until I played this game, but SEGA did a lot of retro games as promotional material for their current series. This is one of them. A Streets of Rage-esque beat-em up that allows you to play varying characters through three small areas. The game technically takes place through Yakuza Kiwami and so I recommend not playing this until you play that. You will face an onslaught of enemies and three bosses. There are some pickup weapons and beneficial items. This probably takes no more than 30 min to beat and you can do consecutive playthroughs to get a high score. The gameplay is fairly similar as you can either do combo attacks, grabs, and a special that costs some of your own health.

    Recommend? If you are able to get your hands on it, sure. It’s nice to see this reskinned beat em up as Yakuza, also it is free!

    The Turing Test

    The Turing Test

    5 hours playtime

    A puzzle game that gives some vibes of Portal, general aesthetic speaking. You are awakened from cryo sleep to figure out what happened to the missing crew. You and your AI must work your way through puzzles in order to figure out the mystery. These puzzles act as a Turing test, which is why the AI is in need of your creative and cognitive solutions. While you enter each area, and solve each puzzle, you will interact with the AI often speaking of philosophy and the perspectives between a human and AI. This helps fill some of the dead air while world building. Most of the puzzles were not too difficult, while some of the more difficult ones were often just due to not noticing a certain part of the puzzle.
    Onto the bad w/ some slight suggestive spoilers:
    Like most media with AI, this game is absolutely determined to make you think AI are evil. It’s not to say that it is or isn’t in this game, but holy heck does it try to pit you against it. It doesn’t even seem like there is that comparable of a reason either. I understand the points some of the characters try to make, but literally end up being absolutely unreasonable.
    Recommend? Yes, a genuinely well-made puzzle game that tries to explore the differences between humans and AI.

    Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links

    Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links

    395 hours playtime

    Some time ago (years?) I wanted to get back into the children’s card game and could only find this for something that assured multiplayer availability. Very much a mobile game, but ported to Steam, I was able to enjoy it at my computer without an overheating battery drained phone. Due to being a mobile game, the classic card game has been modified to be a little bit more fast paced. This is done by removing two of the card columns, limiting some of the future mechanic expansions (this means no link summons), and adding in an ability mechanic. Though I’m fine with some of the limitations, I’m not so agreeable on the abilities. Essentially, you pick a character and slowly unlock skills. These skills give you an incredible advantage in battle. Anywhere ranging from a 1,000 point life point addition to things like seeing all face down cards on your opponent’s field or swapping out cards. Least to say, some abilities are just far superior to other’s especially if you are like me who doesn’t like using them period.
    There is a huge catalogue of cards, both old and new, to customize your decks with. Cards are unlocked via packs which are unlocked by either using gems, your credit card, or both. Though you can certainly use actual money, gems are actually pretty common and plenty of events will make it rain on you with both cards and gems. So, no payment is every really needed if you put some time into this. Here comes the second grief of this game… the meta. Of course this goes true for most multiplayer games, but meta decks are real and they are coming. This mostly means that you are going to be facing 3 out of 5 people with Blue Eyes decks, while the other two will be some other meta deck, and if you are lucky you might find something semi-original. Other than a lack of variety in enemies, is the issue that you need to be able to counter any of this, despite only having a 20 – 30 card deck. It really gets to be unreal and there are some decks that unless they get their 1% brick, you are just going to lose. Note: Accounts are transferrable between mobile phone and Steam, which is what I ended up doing due to a dislike of the mobile platform.
    Recommend? Despite the issues, it still is an easy way to enjoy a nostalgic game. Plus, it is always being updated with new events, cards, balances, and mechanics.

    Always Sometimes Monsters

    Always Sometimes Monsters

    4 hours playtime

    This is certainly not what I thought this game was going to be. A visual novel without visuals, and an RPG maker game with a limited RPG aspect to it. The game starts off pretty interesting as you get to pick a couple characters from a literal party at an apartment. Each one has their own backstory and date. Once you pick you cast… it quickly goes downhill. It is at this point you now get to enjoy being at risk of evicted, barely getting by and having to find a way to get to your ex’s wedding. This, of course, is only made worse by the fact that inflation seems to be a thing and any job you do is not only mundane, far too long, but pays so little. First and foremost, your character has to eat like 10 burgers to be able to go to sleep and not die. These burgers are like $10 each, and some jobs will hardly pay you enough to do that. I didn’t even realize that fishing was an option until I sunk hundreds of dollars for food and I haven’t even gotten to the first bus yet. When I say the jobs are mundane, they are mundane. Factory jobs that require you to do well… factory work. For example, tofu allows you to work as much as you need until either you leave, or it depletes for the day. If you want to even dream of coming out positive for the day, you can very easily spend half an hour real time doing this. The story developments really are not that exciting, and the characters are okay at best.
    Recommend? Absolutely not, I understand wanting to give a realistic simulation of life, but this truly was egregious and boring.

    Teleglitch: Die More Edition

    Teleglitch: Die More Edition

    3 hours playtime

    I pretty much dropped this out of pure lack of skill and general disinterest. Top down, rogue-like, pixel game that has you going from teleporter to teleporter while shooting/stabbing the oncoming zombie-like and robot enemies. There also is apparently a crafting system, but I could never figure out how to do it, which would have probably helped me greatly as all my resources would deplete.
    Recommend? Not really, I’m barely sure what the story was either so I couldn’t use that to keep me going.

EDIT: Just realizing I missed a game because I could not get the generator to pull it.
N++ (NPLUSPLUS)
Status: Beaten
I really did not think I was going to get through this. I would like to note that I only beat the base game, there are still the additional legacy and ultimate addition packs that I am just not even going to attempt.
This game is a physics and momentum-based platformer that stresses you be quick, agile, and accurate with all your actions. Despite your only actions literally being run, jump and wall slide, it is very challenging.
You are on a timer to get to the exit gate. Often times you will need to hit a switch to open said gate and enter it. There are a surplus of obstacles including other switches, platforming, mines, rockets, lasers, and much more. If you run out of time, get hit, or fall too far/accelerate too quickly into a wall then you die and must restart the map. Collectibles are also stationed around the map which are there to tempt you, but also can extend your time slightly upon collection.
It’s very important to note that this game will cause high frustration, again this game is very challenging. It’s a little more complicated than that though. Each tab of levels has many packs of maps. Each pack has about 5 maps, and the maps must be completed in sequence in order to actually beating the pack. This means if you exit out for any reason, you will have to start over the entire pack. This has lead to me extending my play much more than I wanted to just because I did not want replaying a previously completed map. It is also very important to note that your time carries over from previous maps. This means you can effectively softlock yourself out of beating later maps if you are too slow to complete a previous one. This is not something I found out until about the last map pack… so many packs I beat with a shred of a second to spare… so much suffering.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? I cannot deny that this game performs well. The music is great, and ability to switch color schemes keeps the visuals refreshing. I do recommend this game with a warning of much frustrations for your future.

July 2021
I’ll let you in on a little something, the Yakuza game, it’s not like boxing. The man who gets down isn’t the loser. The guy who can’t tough it out to the end, he’s the one who loses. Eh? Don’t you think? - Yakuza 0

    Eufloria HD

    Eufloria HD

    7 hours playtime

    What appears to be a calming game where you must spread seeds, grow trees, gain more flying seeds, and send them to other planets is much more. In fact, under the disguise it is a very basic RTS often requiring your seeds to battle the opposing seeds and the mysterious gray invaders. This means not only can you grow trees that create more seeds, but other trees including turrets and mines.

    Your objective mildly stays the same, survive, don’t lose your production trees, and destroy any threats while invading other planets. The gameplay is very simple as you click the planet with your seeds and drag them to another planet to move them. Each planet has a certain radius out to let them travel, so further planets may require your seeds to bounce between areas to get there. If you are not careful and send out all your fighter seeds, your planet may be invaded and taken over.

    There’s a slight story, but not terrible interesting or important. It is mostly there just to give you a reason for your objective.

    Lewd? Nope.
    Recommend? Above average, so yes. There are more levels than need to be, and some require a little bit of RNG and a LOT of patience (in general poor design). Despite this, the simple gameplay and warm soothing environments/colors still offers an enjoyable experience.

    Painkiller Overdose

    Painkiller Overdose

    6 hours playtime
    no achievements

    One of the many expansions to the original Painkiller. The player takes control of a new protagonist, Belial, a Nephilim previously damned and tortured due to his existence. Due to the events of Painkiller, Belial escapes his prison and sets out to take vengeance on his wardens and torturers. Belial shows a bit more of a cocky side than the previous protag, Daniel, as he often mocks his opponents with belittling comments and pop culture references. Similar to that of Serious Sam, Duke Nukem, or Bender (Futurama). The campaign itself is relatively short.
    This game introduces new designs to weapons previous in the series to fit more of his demonic form and even a few new items to add to his arsenal. The new weapons provide a fresher experience despite the overall similarity in gameplay. What makes this game a vast improvement from the previous is that the bosses in this game are far less gimmicky and do not require forced damage in order to defeat. Level designs are generally decent as we encounter both old and new locales.
    The biggest negative to this game is that despite being a much shorter game than the previous, the load times are absolutely insane. Some load times can take several minutes. The constant mocking can also get a bit old and overall if you are not really into the gameplay of the original, you probably will feel pretty similar about this one as well.
    Recommend? For the most part, yes. The reduction of annoying gimmicks, obstacle debris, and reduced level size makes this game much more manageable. However, the loading times are absolutely unforgivable.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Kinda. Definite improvement over the original, but still has somewhat crippling flaws.

    Remember Me

    Remember Me

    8 hours playtime

    This is a game that I always saw and believe I would enjoy despite all the negative comments around it. Though I still enjoyed it to a degree, I was able to find the flaw that really put a damper on my experience, the lost potential of it all. The game revolves in a dystopian future in Neo-Pariswhere information and memories are at the crux of society. A memory technology called Sensen (something almost every person has installed) allows them to remove memories as well as experience others. This, of course, becomes a problem as some become addicted to losing their own memories or gaining others as well as being incredibly exploitable by the government and those that would take advantage.

    You play as Nilin, a recent captive who had all her memories taken and sentenced to death. Thanks to a rebellious faction, you escape this fate and work with them to gain your memories as well as stop the company that created Sensen, Memorize. You are armed with your fighting abilities that work much like the free-flow fighting in the Batman Arkham series as well as the Remixer. The Remixer allows you to change the memories of select targets which in turn may change the way they view you and events around them. This is one of those things that was greatly misused despite all of the potential it held. Free-frow combat had a unique mechanic that allowed you to customize your combos. Unfortunately, the combos themselves were relatively strict and the only real customization is what effect each button in the combo had. As you level up, you unlock a new button effect. Button variants for combos apply on hit and either apply more damage, healing, cooldown of abilities, or chains which improve the effect of the combo button they are attached to. You will also unlock various abilities that you can use during battle that can assist you in battle, including stuns and improved power. Outside of combat, the game offers platforming similar to Tomb Raider or Assassins Creed. This can be incredibly inconsistent as most jumps require the character to snap to a position, but the snap does not always occur as it should and can cause many falling deaths.
    Now, to target all of the lost potential. First and foremost, the remixer. As you use the remixer, you get to alter various objects and actions in memories to change the outcomes. Any change is undone as you rewind past them (can only be done by rotating the joystick in a circle) which can take a long time if you get the wrong combination of items. The biggest waste is that there is only one solution per memory remix. Though this creates a more rigid narrative, the possibility of having multiple outcomes and the person having changed views from each outcome could have made playthroughs for each person more unique along with more interesting outcomes or branching paths. Along a similar vein, despite this dystopian setting the game does explore this universe other than lengthy news articles. Even more so, the scenarios it does bring up create somewhat unbelievable situations a bounty hunter who specializes in Memory Hunters somehow trusts a Memory Hunter the first moment her mind is remixed. This moment should have been more gradual rather than a switch.. Some just seem forced and awkward. The combo systems are far too strict even though they suggest customization and you will end up using one combo by the end of the game. The various effects just don’t offer enough variety in actions to keep the combat interesting. The platforming is fairly subpar and offers little to enjoy. There are moments where you use memories to travel through dangerous fields, however the means of activation are incredibly lack luster and provide annoying activation and intervals at best.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? In the best of times, I would say this game is average. It really doesn’t explore enough, nor did it expand on potentially great ideas that it brought to the table. I generally don’t recommend this game unless at a great discount but prepare for some disappointment.

    SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 4 Episode I

    SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 4 Episode I

    2 hours playtime

    Definitely should have written the review for this sooner as the memory of this is fading. Overall, it is a class 2D sonic game that once again pits you against Dr. Robotnik and his robot creations. Most of the levels are okay, and boss battles are enjoyable. However, I remember absolutely hating the Ruins level and boss fight in it’s entirety. You are able to collect Chaos Emeralds if you bring enough rings to the end and manage to hit the teleporter. This will bring you to a minigame where you are timed and must rotate the screen to guide the bouncing sonic to his destination. Other than some blatant bad level design, there are cases where you are unsure if a pit will lead you to a new path or just death. This is fixed in the later episode.

    Recommend? Other than some of the level design (Ruins), the game offers that classic Sonic gameplay and generally does not disappoint.

    SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 4 Episode II

    SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 4 Episode II

    2 hours playtime

    Everything is better with a friend. This stays true for Episode 2 as not only are you joined with Tails, who you can do combo moves to fly among other traversal techniques, but the levels in this game are consistently enjoyable with very little issues or frustrations. Another improvement over the last is that fall pits are now marked. Previously you wouldn’t know if the open area below lead to another path or your fatal demise. Now there are markers that help you make the consistently correct decision or when to call upon Tails to try and save you.
    This episode also includes another route where you play as Dr. Robotnik’s greatest creation, Metal Sonic. This does some pre-game backstory to Metal Sonic’s journey as well as revisiting some of Episode 1’s levels… for better or for worse.

    Recommend? Yes, a complete improvement over the first Episode.

    Yakuza 0

    Yakuza 0

    54 hours playtime

    Thanks to a follower, I finally started the Yakuza series. A series that was bound to go down as one of my top games to enjoy. Let me start out that there is just so much to do in this game. Various side quests, businesses to run, various mini-games to play can give this game a base of 20 hours of gameplay without even touching the story. I’d almost say the experience of this game is only enjoyed IF you do the side stuff and get lost in it (such as pocket car racing).
    Despite most games where you can get lost in the side quests and forget the story, this game’s story is quite great actually. It can seamlessly transition from a light hearted and comedic moment to some of the most heavy and heart wrenching dramas out there. You play as two separate characters. Kiryu, the somewhat oblivious consistent protagonist of the series whose determination and commitment to follow a just path leads him through hardship, and Goro Majima, a respectable business owner who is trying to get back into the Yakuza. Both characters have their own locale, side quests, fighting styles, and parallel story. After every so chapters, you will switch characters. This can cause some confusion but is important for the story.
    The fighting of this game is pretty great as you can switch out from 3 main styles to destroy your enemies. Both characters have similarities per style, but wildly different move sets and abilities that go with them. There is also the Heat mechanic which can be used for devastating cinematic moves (each style and item you use has a different action associated). These heat mechanics can also affect various unlocked skills as well. Unfortunately, this game has an issue with crazy specific heat requirements to activate some skills which render them nigh unusable. Heat is gained by punching your enemies, well timed dodges, and consumables. Heat is lost by getting hit, dodging too much, or doing very little for a long enough time. Thus, heat is a very important resource to manage.
    Abilities play a huge role in how you fight. There are three skill trees, each targeting a specific style. In order to unlock these skills, you must rub money into your muscles. The inflation of skills is crazy as the outer tree inflates like crazy. Beating up random henchmen will grant you some quick cash, but the real money is earned in each character’s business (Kiryu, Real estate| Majima, Cabaret). So, if you want to get those high-end skills, you are going to want to spend A LOT of time invested in your business.

    Lewd? There are some suggestive themes and skimpy videos, but nothing outright AO.
    Recommend? Very much yes. It is so hard not to go on and on about this game. The story is fantastic, the combat enjoyable, and the game is just a great time sink. Had this not been on my streaming agenda, I would have spent way more hours on this and not regret a single moment.

    CARRION

    CARRION

    5 hours playtime

    Very few games offer you the chance to be the villain, to be the monster. This game does just that. A sort of metroidvania that casts you as something resembling John Carpenter’s “The Thing” as you slither across a complex causing chaos and absorbing the biomass of your unfortunate victims. As you are a creature with an unending hunger, the story is very subtle and hardly in the way. Instead you must continue your chaos and carnage to make your escape of the facility without being destroyed.
    You can control your tentacles to grab items or grab humans and either sling them around or nom on them. This in turn gains you biomass which acts as health. The more upgrades you acquire and biomass you consume grant you increased size, more health, and new abilities. Of course, certain abilities are locked at different sizes and thus you may need to deposit the mass in order to complete specific puzzles. As you reach new stages, the feeble humans do gear up with new weapons, mechs, and robotics to stop your rampage.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, though the game can feel a little repetitive at times, the ability to rampage as the monster is still ever satisfying.

    Dead by Daylight

    Dead by Daylight

    512 hours playtime

    I’ve previously talked about this game when I considered it “beaten”. Now that I have currently taken on all of the achievements, I can confidently say that I still very much enjoy this game. Sure, the community can be toxic, cheaters exist relatively commonly (blatantly teleporting from lockers), and some achievements kind of suck. Despite this I would still play it again and still excited for the upcoming chapters for new killers and survivors.
    Favorite Killers: Trickster, The Shape (Mike Myers), Ghostface
    Hated Killers: The Blight, The cannibal (Leatherface)
    Recommend? Still yes, especially as they update the visuals and improve mechanics to this day!

    Kaori After Story

    Kaori After Story

    88 minutes playtime
    no achievements

    Gifted to me, I had never played the series this is a spin off to. You play as a boyfriend to a girl (Kaori) you met in some sort of mech school. You are travelling with her to her parent’s house to meet them for Christmas vacation. As in most VNs, you get to choose dialogue at key points. Some of which will send you down different paths, get different dialogues, and even some different visuals.
    Even though this game is a spin off of a series, other than maybe the origin of how these two characters met, and some characters they introduce briefly, you really don’t need the experience of the series to enjoy this game. It pretty much gives you an idea of their background through the conversations you have. Kaori’s family is a bit eccentric but provided interesting conversations. The game was a bit longer than expected too, which was nice as the story does well create a steady and believable growth of relationship as well as romantic moments. It’s also worth noting that this game has voice acting and fairly decent voice acting at that.
    Lewd? Other than humorous suggestions, nope!
    Recommend? Yes, even as someone who has not played the other entries, I can say that this offers a romantic and warm experience.

June 2021
No, you defeated me. Which means you now command me. Pillage my shelves as you please - Bloodstained Ritual of the Night
Your eyes are not a sin || You know…when I was young. I…I hated my eyes. And now that I’m older, I hate what my body has become. But there’s something else there now. Something like…pride - Nier Replicant

So… apparently June was just a really rough month overall. My living situation at the time was extremely stressful and fed up, I needed to figure out where my next move was going to be (among other stressors), and I just generally had a frustrating gaming experience for most of the games I beaten. Writing this now and all of the reviews, I am simply glad that all of that is past and over… for now. In addition, I’m almost caught up with my updates! \o/ Well, no time like the present.

Top Games this month:
Mushroom 11 - Unsuspectingly great Indie game.
The Henry Stickmin Collection - Really great for needing something to just sit back and laugh.
Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night - A beautiful and fun metroidvania.
KOF 98: Ultimate Final Match Edition - Superb fighting game with smooth graphics.

    DOOM 3: BFG Edition

    DOOM 3: BFG Edition

    14 hours playtime

    Fond memories of this on release with late nights and spookiness afoot. Unfortunately, the nostalgia could not last as things were clearly not as I remembered. Specifically, the shotgun. I remember the shotgun being much better back on Xbox. Even though I could not find proof, it seems like the BFG version increased the spread and reduced the damage like crazy. My run was also ruined by an unrealized visual issue in the settings. This may or may not have caused other visual/buggy issues such as flashlights having visual cones, weird inaccurate laser pointers instead of reticles, and floating weapons/t-posing enemies. That being that all the computer screens that you could interact with were fuzz (until an occasional restart would temporarily fix the issue) until I realized some quad visual effect was left on. With that being said, the fact that the BFG edition finally allowed a futuristic Mars military person some duct tape to put a flashlight on their gun instead of having to swap between either while demons hunt you in the dark.

    Just a quick synopsis, you are a Doom Marine (different than original DOOM guy, I think) sent to the outpost on Mars when things go haywire and demons invade. This isn’t like your father’s Doom as it isn’t fast paced action nearly as much as it is a horror filled with closet zombies and jump-scares. Figure out the mystery and maybe get off of Mars. BFG also includes two DLCs that I never had a chance of playing until now. Other than the lack of decent firepower, the game plays pretty decently with spooky atmosphere.

    Onto the DLC, honestly it was pretty underwhelming. Both tried their best to incorporate popular mechanics and replace current mechanics. Resurrection of Evil, brought on the Double-Barreled Shotgun which is a much needed replacement to the regular shotgun but still not nearly as effective, The artifact which gives the player the slow-mo ability from FEAR, and the Grabber Gun which is just the gravity gun from Half-Life 2. So, now that we are past ID/Bethesda ripping off other popular game’s mechanics, we do get to slightly better parts of the DLC. Lost Souls are now skinned like classic Lost Souls, and the bosses are a bit more gimmick based instead of a Bullet Sponge. So, although not the greatest, still a nice change of pace.

    Lost Missions was pretty mediocre as it reuses content, weapons, and enemies from both RoE and Doom 3. Until the last level, I was pretty psyched to just get the game over with.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? For the most part, yes. It may not be the fast paced game most DOOM players (old and new) love, but the change to a more horror was still enjoyable.

    Mushroom 11

    Mushroom 11

    3 hours playtime

    This was a little bit of a hidden gem amongst the sea of games (more importantly indie games) I have amassed. You control a mass of cells in what appears to be a most apocalyptic world. Using your MS Paint god eraser, you destroy some of the mass so that it regenerates in a way that you can move around using the weight, grow around objects for grip, attack/consume enemies, or split your mass in half to conquer more complex puzzles. The majority of this game is traversal and puzzles all the while making sure you don’t completely lose all your mass. So long as you have even one cell remaining on the ground, you can regenerate your mass back almost instantly back to the base mass.

    The physics of this game is very well done and the puzzles (for the most part) are challenging without being obtuse with the exception of the damned key puzzle. Once you conquer the fairly simple concept of destruction and regeneration you are fairly set to go through the rest of the game with that same skill level and only needing to learn to apply it as you go. There are some enemies that can burn your cells away, and hazards such as acid that can cause you to melt away. Bosses are fairly enjoyable, and you will always know when to expect them. Narratively, it’s a bit vague as there is no text/voice to relay the story, but instead you must look at your surroundings and the ending to surmise how the world came to be and what role you play.

    Recommend? Yes, very much so. This game was such an enjoyable surprise and could see myself picking it up again.

    NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139...

    NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139...

    44 hours playtime

    This was my first Nier game (despite owning Automata for several years) and I was a little underwhelmed. I knew it was a hack-and-slash w/ bullet hell quality but I expected the combat to be a bit more… interesting. Something closer to Devil May Cry. Instead, it was very plain and limited such as Dynasty Warrior, but with some bullet hell sprinkled in. You eventually get 4 weapon types. Each of which will have varied stats and weights. Despite the weight, most moves seemed to swing at the same speed and all weapons within the weapon types have the same move sets. You will also get magic abilities that your floating talking book help you cast that you can equip two at a time, though they use the same mana bar, which can be charged for additional damage/effects. Though I would argue only a select few are usable in most scenarios.

    Each weapon can be upgraded by collecting items and bringing them to a shop. This not only buffs the stats, but also gives another entry in that weapons stories as well as gets you closer to unlocking the true ending.

    In addition to all of this, enemies will randomly drop words that you can equip to your magic/weapons/defend/dodge. They don’t give you more abilities, but rather can buff your attacks, drop rates, etc. at varying percentages. It’s very important to know that these will drop randomly and in any order (I’ve had a 30% magic attack drop well before I ever got the 10% magic drop). Enemies themselves are not very interesting. They are known as shades and appear as dark silhouettes with a random gold shine that moves across their body. Most are human shaped, but there are others that take the form of animals. Now, they are not the only enemies, you have your robots and various wild animals, but these are the most prolific. In addition, RANDOM shade bosses can appear which are either for quests or better chance at drops. I put an emphasis on random because even side quests that list the boss can be exceptionally random (I’ll dive more into this later).

    The story takes places several something thousand years after one of the Drakengard games and serves as a spin off. You play as a doting older brother who looks after his sick, but sweet younger sister. Your quest is to take on odd jobs to get by and look for the uncurable disease of the black verse that your younger sister is sick with. This eventually leads you to your talking cohort Weiss, the grimoire which you must unlock verses to hopefully cure your sister. You encounter and gain a weird entourage as you venture outside your village into different areas. This being a Yoko Taro game, this means the first time you beat the game is not the true ending, but in fact 1 of 5(?) endings each requiring meticulous grinding and specific requirements to get to the next ending. This means you will end up replaying the game several times over (new game plus rules).

    The good: This game is actually a remake of Nier/Nier Gestalt and it looks absolutely great. The scenery, models, effects, everything looks beautiful. Not only that, but all of the new voices sound help create believable characters and dialogue. The idle dialogue (dialogue between/during/after missions) is generally enjoyable as each character interacts with each other. On the other hand you get fairly repetitive interactions. It’s not the same exact wording, but perhaps overkill on the relationships. (Weiss calling Kaine a hussy, and her retorting how she will destroy Weiss happens a little too much.) The story is fairly decent, though nothing amazing. Though I haven’t completed every ending as of yet, so who knows I guess. You can kind of figure out the secret of the game early on and is almost frustrating that the characters don’t realize it sooner.

    The bad: The combat is fairly lackluster as it is both repetitive and limited. Most bosses give little to no excitement. Only a few bosses were generally enjoyable. The amount of RNG in this game is almost criminal. Almost everything in the game is a random drop with ridiculously low percentages WHICH INCLUDE TUTORIALS. I don’t think I ever received fishing tutorial 2 until I almost finished the game. These RNG situations include enemies and bosses which are related to side quests. For example, there is a shade that only appears in a certain area when it is cloudy and even then it is only a CHANCE! So, you have to keep running in and out of the area looking for cloudy skies. Then once cloudy, you have to hope HOPE that the enemy spawns. If not, you keep doing the process. It took like half an hour at least to do this quest.

    Back to tutorials. This game explains just about nothing. Not how gardening works, which by the way uses real time to garden (i.e. flowers take a full real day from planting to bloom, and then another full day to produce seeds. This gets ridiculous when you try to crossbreed flowers (again happens for a side quest and achievements) when you have to wait two full days to see if the crossbreed was effective. If not, replant and potentially spend literal weeks to do botany). This includes other things the game doesn’t’ tell you (literally anywhere) anything (where to catch certain fish, what expensive bait is required for said fish, even if the right bait is used it is only a chance you will get it so good luck with no knowledge and trial/error), including that there are true endings and how to get said endings (all of which can only be gotten once you do your first playthrough).

    Despite being a remake, they did almost no quality of life improvements. Planting is far more manual than it needs to be, getting to certain areas can be a pain, almost no ways to track materials needed for upgrades or what enemies drop them, every quest must be found where the quest giver stands. Even though you can get a notification that a quest exists somewhere from your village tavern, you can only pick one of these up at a time. This can also cause other quests to temporarily disappear. Grinding is insane as drop rates are incredibly low for simple upgrades and enemies do not always spawn nor in the numbers to make a worthy grind run. Side quests give you 0 xp for completing them. Instead they give you money, which (unless you wanted to do the ridiculous grind) you probably spent trying to buy the materials (if able at all) because the enemies would just not drop them after an hour or more of gameplay. The game has difficulties which you can change at any time. It largely affects health and damage on both ends while Hard also increases drop rates. I also wish to mention I was on Hard mode the entire game and still rarely got the drops I needed for even the most basic quests.

    Lewd? See Kaine. Other than that, not really.
    Recommend? This is difficult. Though I did generally enjoy the game (I’m a glutton for punishment), there are a lot of negatives to this game. Largely the grind (I enjoy MMOs and still this grind was too much), the lack of knowledge the game tells you, and the generally lackluster combat all make this a miss. So… maybe… maybe at a discount and you care more for the story than anything else. This game is a completion nightmare, that is for sure. (but I crossbreed flowers to get that %1 flower, and fished all the fishies, so eventually I will return to get the final few endings.)

    Painkiller: Black Edition

    Painkiller: Black Edition

    12 hours playtime
    no achievements

    Oh look, another disappointing game. I’ve probably had the Painkiller series in my library for quite some time. Every time I would cross it I would think, “This looks interesting like another badass Doom type game with demons and action.” Though that was somewhat true, the execution was terrible. For a moment, I kind of appreciated the awkwardness of the game with the weird visual designs, the debris that would get in your way in mass, and the ragdoll enemies that would block your shots. Yet, it only got worse. Level designs grew atrocious, and worst of all… the bosses were too gimmicky. Before we get there, let me explain the game more. You are stuck in limbo trying to get into heaven with the help of an angel. You fight Satan’s generals as your mission to redemption. This game plays similar to Doom, Quake, and Serious Sam though closer to SS as you deal with hordes of enemies in single areas rather than as you explore. You build your arsenal with some unique weapons that all have a secondary fire. Visual designs are kind of goofy looking, particularly with the enemies. This is all generally all well and good, now onto the bad.

    The bad. The game features a lot of destructible environments. The debris from said environment stays, and can get in your way. FREQUENTLY! So much so that I would get trapped in said debris during crucial moments. The map designs were insanely subpar to terrible. Finally, the worst part of the game, the bosses. Though it is fine to have some gimmicks for bosses in an FPS (you gotta do more than just shoot an enemy to death), but these enemies were pure gimmick. Some gimmicks of which are extremely stupid. For instance, there is a boss fight where you HAVE to take fall damage. Repeatedly, forced damage. Each fall can be reduced slightly if you land on the right way, which you won’t have anyway of knowing without doing the mission a bunch. The last fall is three times as high as the other three and can kill you instantly if you don’t figure out the secret way to live with like… 2 health. It’s so incredibly dumb and unenjoyable. There’s also a boss in the DLC that you have to get hit in order to activate the damage gimmick. On top of that along with a bunch of glitches and bugs makes this such a great let down for an arena shooter.

    Lewd? Nope.
    Recommend? Nooooooooope. Absolutely not. Repetitive forced damage for bosses is incredibly stupid and I cannot wait to be done with the series.

    Princess.Loot.Pixel.Again

    Princess.Loot.Pixel.Again

    3 hours playtime

    A game so bad that it is no longer on the Steam store. This rogue-lite does something interesting.. interestingly dumb. So, it more acts like a side scrolling platformer w/ room similar to Binding of Isaac. The only issue is that most enemies float or fly. This means you have to jump to do most of your attacks… which you can only jump like… once and most characters only have melee… plus you don’t get that great of abilities…. So yeah. Again, any spoils of war are generally unrewarding, you receive almost no gold to do shops, and the bosses are so incredibly generic and simple that there is no worth to this game.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Even if you could get this game, I do not recommend in the slightest. The design choice to make this a platform side scroller with a mostly melee cast makes no sense.

    SUPER DRAGON BALL HEROES WORLD MISSION

    SUPER DRAGON BALL HEROES WORLD MISSION

    36 hours playtime
    no achievements

    This game is originally an arcade game based of the Dragon Ball Heroes show which is kind of a bad fanfic of Dragonball that you can’t stop watching. The plus is that everything from all movies and most games is now canon in this universe. It allows for fights between characters that would never happen, further power level increases and transformations, and new OC characters.

    Now onto the actual game. It takes Dragon Ball Heroes and turns it into a card game that your main character plays. Until that is… distortions in your world happen and you can transfer between worlds like Digimon (more Digimon Frontier as you transform into an OC class of your choosing). This game is gacha based so you collect multiple versions of the same, but very diverse characters to get different rarities, stats, and skills. Create a team of characters that synergize and battle them against the enemy.

    The actual gameplay is overly simple. Set how much energy each character will use and then do a quick time event (it’s a power bar that raises and falls at a fast rate, landing on a number when you press the button) for each attack and defend to land a greater number than your opponent. The real thrill of the game is being able to land Super attacks, Special abilities, Ultimates, etc. which are very flashy, have their own little mini game to activate and are just generally enjoyable to experience. As you win battles, you gain items and tickets to roll more gacha to get more characters and create/improve teams. At no point can you pay actual money to buy characters/tickets.

    Despite having a huge cast of characters and abilities, late game you will see the enemy have a lot of the same abilities over and over which makes an already repetitive game even more so. There is also a lot of it. Somewhere around 5 main chapters all with their own sub chapters and a gameboard filled with fights for each one. This isn’t even mentioning the side stories you can do (some of which require you to have certain characters before unlocking).

    Lewd? No?
    Recommend? I would say only to hardcore fans of DragonBall series as a whole and don’t mind repetitiveness. Otherwise seeing iconic characters fight each other using crazy combos and moves, dealing ever higher numbers is exciting… in moderation.

    THE KING OF FIGHTERS '98 ULTIMATE MATCH FINAL EDITION

    THE KING OF FIGHTERS '98 ULTIMATE MATCH FINAL EDITION

    3 hours playtime

    One of the few fighters I have somehow missed, I decided to pick up the KOF series. This game has an incredibly large roster that makes sense for a game that pushes team battles as it’s main format. Overall, this is a fairly typical 2D pixel fighter as most abilities will rely on quarter circles, dragon punches, etc. Considering it’s format the game both looks and plays quite well. That being said, some of the moves were a little hard to pull off and can only imagine newer players having even more difficulty especially with how difficult the AI generally was. This is especially true with the final boss who just absolutely destroyed me until I found an exploit.

    Lewd? Some characters can be a little… reveal (looking at you Mai), but otherwise no.
    Favorite Character: Benimaru Nikaido
    Recommend? Especially to any fan of fighters this game does not disappoint. I’m very looking forward to checking out more in the series if they play and look just as well as this.

    200% Mixed Juice!

    200% Mixed Juice!

    7 hours playtime

    I had always assumed this was similar to the salt mixture of %100 Orange Juice but was somewhat pleasantly surprised this was actually a turn based RPG. The cast of character of original OJ are all here and you can collect them in card form. Use them to fight each opponent to unlock the mystery of the world singularity and collect more people from across the worlds.

    The game uses a bit of a rock paper scissors system with the abilities and cards as there are three types and each following one is the others weakness. This creates a necessity to collect a variety of cards along with leveling up and getting the best rarity for each situation. There is also a great deal of story in this and might be the better way to getting to know the lore of OJ instead of losing a dice roll against a seagull during the OJ episodes. Though the lore in this is skewed, so much so that several walls including the 4th are broken but creates a pretty accurate depiction of what each character present is like.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Generally, yes. There is some grinding, but not terribly. That being said, the final fights can be ridiculous and not only require a premium team but focused strategy and some luck.

    Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night

    Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night

    29 hours playtime

    Ah, returning to one of my top game genres, Metroidvanias. This, truly a love letter to Symphony of the Night, is a well done entry to the genre. You play as a fashionable French woman that is a Shardbinder who takes demon shards into her body in order to use their abilities (wether it is active, passive, buff, or summon). After being in a coma for so long you wake to find an imminent threat looming over the world as a once allied Shardbinder turns his back to the world and tries to summon a great evil (promise it is not Dracula). Each enemy you defeat has a chance to drop a shard which you can absorb to gain new abilities or improve already owned shards.

    As you venture you will have to platform, fight bosses/enemies, learn new abilities to help traversal, and even help a few characters along the way (and maybe even enjoy some new food). You can customize the main character to some degree (hair, accessories, sometimes the suit) as well as change between a variety of weapons all of which have their own move sets and unlockable moves depending on the weapons name. There is a lot of just generally cool enemies, abilities, levels, and secrets in this game. This also includes call backs to the Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon game including characters, enemies, and bosses.

    The 2.5 D art is a little weird at times, but overall is stunning. Progressing the story can be confusing at times, not just in a sense of the metroidvania issue of figuring out where to go, but sometimes some progression is not as it seems (to avoid potential spoilers). You can craft food to increase stats upon first time consumption and gain health in the place for potions. Getting some drops for material/ingredients/shards can be a little much, but not nearly as bad as most games could be.

    Lewd? No?
    Recommend? Very much yes. Absolutely enjoyable to the very end, the main character is cute and fairly likeable, and just has generally great level/enemy design.

    DOOM 64

    DOOM 64

    6 hours playtime

    DOOM 64
    Despite having never played this game before and rarely seeing any other shooter like this on the N64 (at best I saw a small amount of Turok) I felt really nostalgic diving into this. Something about a 3D arena shooter on the N64 just feels homely. Well, this game takes a well received series and gives it the ol’ 3D polygon touch. Suddenly hallways feel more hallway-y and demons actually seem a little more frightful. The general gameplay is still the same, rip and tear/shoot through a demonic horde as you make your way through various levels. This is a sequel to DOOM II and thus has all the same enemies and weapons with the exception of an additional unholy weapon that we also see a variation of in Eternal. All of the redesigns of the weapons and enemies look great. Each having additional sprite effects. My only issue with some of the redesigns were more audio based where it sounded like Imps had the Lost Souls sound clip from Doom II (or something like this) and thus caused me inaccurate assumptions about what was attacking me. Sounds past that sound great. Level designs could be confusing at times, but for the most part seemed unique from one another and decently created. The final boss was kind of a bit much to fight, but at least was not another variation of the Icon of Sin in Doom II (and the other Doom II expansions).

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, very enjoyable and very DOOM. I was quite pleased I was able to receive this for free for getting Doom Eternal on release.

    Serious Sam: The Random Encounter

    Serious Sam: The Random Encounter

    78 minutes playtime
    no achievements

    A quick little spin off of the SS series. Instead of the usual arena shooter, it is a turn based RPG that requires strategy in using the right weapon for the mass horde job. You’ll gain allies and have to aim the weapons as once you complete your turn, a timed action will happen where your character will shoot in the specific direction for a time in hopes that you are able to destroy the horde that chases after you. The game is incredibly short, but has the heart of SS in there.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Meh, it’s mostly just okay, but a decent little game none the less.

    The Henry Stickmin Collection

    The Henry Stickmin Collection

    7 hours playtime

    So… this month was a bit rough. A lot of the games I was playing were not helping as they were putting some strain on me. Thus, I broke my no buy games rule to buy a game that I had a pretty good idea could make me laugh… and I was so right. The Henry Stickmin Collections is several episodes anthology that remasters of flash games released on Newgrounds, originally. Each episode focuses on Henry as he tries to complete an objective that is usually quite self-profitable. As the episode progress, Henry will have to decide to use one of many gadgets or decisions to progress. Now this game is far more about failing than winning. Each failure to pick the right tool for the job often ends up in a humorous situation, reference to a popular media, and/or failure text. Even after watching a little bit of a let’s play of this game I was still able to laugh at some of the ridiculous outcomes. Add in some secrets and this game really is just a lot more than one would think. The best part is that the final episode actually allows you to combine previous endings for a last hurrah and pretty diverse multi-path story.

    Lewd? Use Diversion, Call Charles, Dance Battle, Teleportation Remote (no not lewd)
    Recommend? Absolutely, since this game doesn’t rely on crazy gameplay it really can be for anyone who wants to just experience and laugh. Getting all of the endings, secrets, and failures gives this game a lot of replay ability and gameplay in general and so is worth every penny.

May 2021
What a horrible night to have a curse! - Castlevania: Simon’s Quest

The quote this time is a little bit more accurate for today than I would like. Normally I naturally keep sun exposure to a minimum, but visited someone during the weekend and didn’t even consider the consequences. Now I am sunburnt to all heck. Dracula and I have quite the common enemy, the sun. Anyways, I’m sure you noticed there are quite a few Castlevania entries this time around. I actually started the series quite a while back, but lost motivation due to the issues in Simon’s Quest. The latest season release of Castlevania pushed me to get through it and play what I could.

Top Games of the Month:
Resident Evil Village
Castlevania: The Dracula X Chronicles
Castlevania: Bloodlines

    DeadCore

    DeadCore

    2 hours playtime

    Platformer w/ speed and time trial focused. Jump, dash, activate switches to temporarily remove gravity, and disable enemy bots to continue climbing the tower.
    The game overall is alright. It really just looks like a bonus time trial mode taken from other games as the shapes, enemies, and scenery is fairly generic. The story is pretty latent as you have to pick up item orbs to find anything about it, but honestly doesn’t really affect your ability to progress. However, if you are trying to get the true ending, you will need to complete the game once, and then use the late game abilities on earlier levels to find the remaining items which was a bit annoying.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yeah, for a decent price you can enjoy trying to go fast through relatively well built and multi-path levels.

    Final DOOM

    Final DOOM

    17 hours playtime
    no achievements

    As a somewhat veteran of the DOOM series (mostly just the first two and the latest two) this game made me feel like an actual amateur. This game’s difficulty is insane. Even after putting the difficulty down from my usual Ultra-Violence to Hey, not too rough, I still felt the pressure of the demonic hoard and challenging level design. Seriously, it’s like going down a hall and “oops all Revenants” or dealing with three arch-viles plus additional demons in an environmental hazard zone with little health and ammo to my name. Still, I persevered through the Plutonium Experiment and even was able to put the difficulty up a tick for TNT Evilution.

    Overall the game is essentially an expansion to DOOM II as it introduces no new enemies and has you deal with similar end-game bosses.

    Lewd? Other than the railing I received, nope.
    Recommend? It’s a hard recommend as the challenge is quite high but I feel like better person for getting through it. However, I probably will never pick up this game again.

    Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas

    Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas

    29 hours playtime
    no achievements

    Well shit, here we go again. Probably one of the first GTA games I had an actual chance to play through decently back in the day without it just being my cousin bringing over a copy of Vice city to drive around and run people over. Thus, this marks my first time getting to the end of any GTA game. So, I don’t have too much to reference from other games on similarities.

    The story starts with CJ coming back to his hood only finding out the gang his “family” represents has dwindled and the streets taken hold by drug abuse. It’s up to CJ to strengthen the gang bonds and rid the streets of smack all the while fending off other gangs and corrupt cops.

    The crazy thing about this game is that it is kind of a rollercoaster of themes. First it starts out as a gangster paradise themed game, but quickly changes tones through each major arc. SO much so that I think it didn’t really know how to end itself properly as the ending levels kind of just get thrown in your lap and end rather quickly, quickly forgetting all your previous experience up to this point. Other than this the gameplay revolves heavily on stealing rides, using (mostly gun) weapons to strike down your foes and pick up their cash. There are, of course a multitude of missions for you to take on. Some of which fairly traditional, the others (and worst of which) have you handling vehicles that handle terribly. So much so that future releases of this title had to be reworked to be more lenient for the player looking at you RC plane

    Some of the biggest issues with this game is your ally AI can barely keep up with you, handling of most vehicles is clunky as heck, and as soon as you get settled to one theme of the game, it sends your butt quite a distance across the map. The last part is only really bad as there are many times where you are going to have to do several main missions that are unreasonably distant from each other. Even with the best vehicles, the paths can be annoying.
    Lewd? A little as there are sexual themes present in this game including a dildo weapon, but nothing revealing and explicit.
    Recommend? Despite falling apart towards the end, and some god(s) awful missions, this truly is an iconic entry in the GTA series that will have you go on quite an adventure.

    Ironclad Tactics

    Ironclad Tactics

    6 hours playtime

    What if the Civil War was steampunk? What if the gameplay of this would be a deck building strategy game? What if there is heavy importance on the postal service? Well, throw those “What ifs” out as this game is just that. You manage soldiers and steampunk bots to battle a mysterious foe that seems to be using the same Steampunk technology you had worked to create. Build decks with limits on deck size and different factions to either capture points or deal direct damage to the enemy as you figure out the mysterious villain.
    Gameplay revolves around drawing cards and as the timer passes, for each second, a turn passes. This means that any placed cards will advance by their movement total, you gain an action point (which lets you play cards or activate abilities), and automatic attacks if they are in the cone of fire designated by each unit.
    The story is pretty meh and somewhat predictable while the strategy side has a pretty solid core to it. However, some of the levels are a little obnoxious and despite some masterful built decks… some of the levels felt like there had to be some luck on my side in order to win. There is supposedly a way to play co-op and maybe that was the intention for some of these.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Just enough to say yes, but not so much that you should get this unless it’s on sale and it’s something you are already looking for.

    Rogue Legacy

    Rogue Legacy

    15 hours playtime

    One of the first Rogue-lite/Rogue-likes I have played, but long since dropped it. As is standard, once you die you lose everything and must pick a new character to start your next run. There are some exceptions as certain abilities can retain gold to assist in increasing starting stats, unlocks, etc. The character you pick each time is randomized of three descendents. Usually one has the same class and item while the other two can be anything. On top of this they also have a modifier. This can be anything good such as stronger attacks or unflinching, to harmful effects such as making you huge, turning the screen upside down, etc.
    The plot is that you must explore the castles four main areas to beat each area boss in order to challenge the king of the castle. The castle itself, other than having the four areas being in their respective directions, is randomly generated so various events and challenges may appear. Platform and battle your way to create your legacy.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Leaning towards yes. The combat is fairly simple, and some of the enemies/bosses can be a bit much, but otherwise a decent rogue-like if that is a genre you enjoy.

    The Ultimate DOOM

    The Ultimate DOOM

    4 hours playtime
    no achievements

    Remaster of the original DOOM that not only looks better, but has a bunch of beneficial UI changes (along with not having to use DOSbox). I honestly did not expect it to look so good while still keeping it’s classic aesthetic. If you aren’t aware of the series, you are DOOM guy. An angry marine fending off the forces of hell from Mars and Earth alike. Equip yourself with an arsenal of weapons and strafe down hallways to rip and tear your enemies. It’s not straight combat though as you will need to solve minor puzzles and grab keycards to advance through doors.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, though I don’t consider it the best of the originals. This game truly is a classic and holds up fairly well, especially with the upgraded graphics and UI.

    Resident Evil Village

    Resident Evil Village

    59 hours playtime

    Currently my game of the year. This game improves upon everything RE7 setup and more. Following the events of RE7, MIA and Ethan are relocated to Europe under a witness protection program from the past events. Despite this, things go awry as Mia is gunned down and your child taken by someone you thought you trusted. Now you must go through a village, castle, and more to find your kid and uncover the truth as monsters inspired by European urban legends, mythology, and literature try to kill you.

    RE7, despite reintroducing the series to a new flavor of survival horror, was fairly one note in it’s enemies (blobs of mold). This fixes this quite a bit as each enemy has unique features and differ wildly as you explore. Not only the enemies get this treatment, but the greater villains and bosses as well. You are also no longer restricted to exploring an estate, but many different locals that unique and have a range of brightness and volume. This goes to show that even when you aren’t restricted to tight spaces and dark corridors, you can still give the player sense of fear and anxiety.

    The game is still very much in first person with not only a wide range of guns, but they can now be modified and upgraded. This adds a bit of strategy and goals to making yourself survive just a bit longer.
    Some of the levels felt a bit shorter than expected and often felt like I wanted more, but for what it’s worth this game is decently long and overall satisfying. Best yet, if you tire of struggling through after a long journey, there are points in the game that give you a short sense of power and action that cleanse that palate and reward the player for getting so far.

    Story, overall, is really great as it sticks to a theme and will often circle back to previously mentioned subjects as well as explains various questions that the previous title left unanswered. There are moments where some situations could have been avoided, or just generally better actions by various characters. Despite this, there are plenty more where characters really shine and show their depth along with great voice acting and well animated scenes.

    If you have beaten the game and want more (while we wait for the anticipated DLC), there is Village of Shadows difficulty which ramps up the challenge by restricting crafting/weapon upgrades and has a few surprises in store for the player. If that’s not enough, Mercenaries is back to go through various levels an get high-scores that will not only impress your friends, but unlock additional content for both Mercenaries and the base game. Finally, there is the extra-content shop. This allows you to spend points you get by passively completing challenges (via main story or Mercenaries) to get various gallery unlocks, weapons, and unlimited weapon options.

    Lewd? Other than Big Vampire Mommy GF and her lovely goth daughters chasing you around the castle calling you “Man thing”? Nope, but that’s okay I got what I needed :)

    Recommend? Very much yes. This serves as a much needed sequel to RE7 as it both fixes and answers a bunch of open questions and provides stellar gameplay.

    Rabiez: Epidemic

    Rabiez: Epidemic

    67 minutes playtime

    This game underperforms in an already overly saturated top down zombie survival genre. This game has you manage a set amount of military/police to protect civilians from an incoming zombie threat. You can order them to stand watch in an area, follow a particular person, or have them target a specific threat.

    This is where it quickly falls apart. First off, civilians can turn at any second despite not being bit. There is some visual warning, but is annoying. Additionally, if a zombie gets too close to your person (even if you have them target the zombie) they will instead run and take 0 offensive action. It is a losing battle as they are somehow slower than the actual zombie. This can be frustrating as even the best strategy can be ruined by this little mechanic. This and some poor AI development causes your units to essentially not listen to your commands. Levels very quickly become luck based and somewhat impossible to a game that offers no honest challenge or enjoyment.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Absolutely not.

Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest

This game was a bit daunting at first with the idea that it was open world. It wasn’t as initially as bad until you realize that it was not translated well or accurately. It’s not so much that it is hard to understand as it just gives you wrong information when you talk to people. This can severely hinder your progress as some of this information is crucial to progress, especially when certain items require a certain action at a certain place or break walls/floors that you wouldn’t have even noticed. Despite this very huge issue, the game is not as open as one might think and given some pushes here and there from a guide, you can pretty much stumble your way through with some determination.
Story wise, we once again follow Simon Belmont who must resurrect Dracula and defeat him once more to remove Dracula’s curse. Depending on how you play, you can get 1 of 3 endings.

The gameplay itself is fairly classic Castlevania as you wield your mighty whip and strike down any foes in your path. Some of the areas do not have the greatest design and can be downright frustrating as there may not be an alternative or better solution other than trial and error/perseverance. Bosses are not overly difficult and some of the fights can be enjoyable. There is also a time mechanic, and any time it hits night the curse acts up and causes even more powerful foes to awaken during this time. This includes and persists when inside a castle/dungeon.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Unless you can find a better port or mod, I would probably say you can pass on this unless you want to keep a guide on hand.

Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse

We most go back in time before Simon Belmont defeated Dracula. Back to when Trevor Belmont was still around and on his journey to stop the old bat himself. This game returned to the classic Castlevania 1 format of being stages, but with a twist. After completing a stage you can go on branching paths to choose your journey and some paths will lead you to a boss that will let you recruit an ally on defeat. Having an ally lets you switch between Trevor and that ally any time during a stage to use their weapons and abilities. The only downside to this is that you can only have 1 ally in your party and you won’t know what the new ally does until you recruit them while the old ally will be gone forever. Additionally, defeating the game with the ally in your party will unlock a specific ending for them. So, team up with Grant, Alucard, and Sypha to take down Dracula.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes. Though I would have liked to been able to recruit multiple allies, the game plays well and isn’t overly difficult other than those annoying mummies.

Castlevania Bloodlines

No longer following the Belmont family, we find ourselves controlling a new generation of monster/vampire hunters. This game really throws out all the well-known names as even the final boss is no longer Dracula, but instead Dracula’s niece Elizabeth Bartley. You can play as either John Morris (uses whip similar to Belmont’s) and Eric Lecarde (uses a spear). Each character has different abilities and thus will be able to take different paths.

The game is once again pretty standard classic Castlevania as you move stage through stage to fight the bosses and fight the final boss who wishes to orchestrate World War I.
Graphically this game has improved quite a bit since the start of the series and they use their stages and bosses to really showcase the capabilities of their time. Bosses can be quite challenging, but using your abilities properly they can be quite enjoyable. Despite Konami’s attempt to sort of reinvent and send the series in a new direction, we never see these protags or their lineage again.

Lewd? nope
Recommend? Yes, an enjoyable journey that rarely gives that old-school unfair difficulty that some games are known for.

Castlevania: The Adventure

First Castlevania game to take place on a handheld and despite it’s basic name, takes place before Castlevania w/ Simon. Instead we play as Christopher Belmont who gets the age old task of stopping Dracula. Not going to lie… this game really underperforms. Graphically, the game lacks quite a bit for its time and the combat and level design are fairly bare bones. So much so that the game no longer features sub-weapons and whip upgrades are removed if you take damage. This also features both a time limit which can be quite close for time to complete as well as pixel perfect jumps and impossibly annoying room designs.

Lewd? Nope
Recommend? No, the game was held back by technical limitations and offered nothing in terms of quality gameplay

Castlevania II: Belmont’s Revenge

Direct Sequel to the previous handled (C: The Adventure) as Cristopher Belmont once again answers the call to defeat Dracula who just does not want to stay down. This time it is personal as Dracula as captured and turned your son against you. This game returns a lot of the formula of previous, mainly returning the use of sub weapons. Stages are set up closer to Mega Man this time where you can complete the stages in any selected order. Defeating all 4 main stages unlocks the final path.

This game really improved on everything the last game failed to do so and showed the capabilities both graphically and performance wise the GameBoy could handle. Visuals were more crisp, combat and moving was less choppy, and the general level design was well built. Each boss and area provided a healthy challenge and enjoyable experience. You also get to face another legitimate Vampire Hunter which was cool to experience a being with abilities equal to yours. Equally matched of sorts.

Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes, wildly improved over it’s prequel and holds up fairly well despite being released on the Game Boy.

Castlevania: The Dracula X Chronicles
Remake of Rondo of Blood w/ 2.5D graphics. We play as Richter Belmont who wishes to save his betrothed from Dracula’s grasp. This game was actually pretty impressive as the new depth of graphics really created beautiful and lively areas while the dialogue and action kept you wanting more. As per tradition you play stage by stage equipped with a whip and various sub-weapons to fight an onslaught of enemies, platforms, and unique bosses. A slight change is that each sub-weapons has an ultimate ability that deals a devastating blow while costing quite a bit of hearts. It’ll take planning and knowledge to use each weapons ability well.

Each level was fairly enjoyable, and if equipped with the right abilities and knowledge allowed for alternate paths to new stages, new bosses, and new endings. The remake of the game itself adds cutscenes, dialogue, and adjustments to various bosses and stages all the while remaining a healthy difficult (other than one stage that I loathe flea men and trap stage makes for a poor time

What makes the Dracula X Chronicles even more impressive is that also includes the original Rondo of Blood, various modes such as Boss Rush mode, unlockable characters, and even the sequel to Rondo, Symphony of the Night. There is just so much included in this game and every bit of it is enjoyable.

Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Very much yes. Though everyone talks of it’s sequel, Symphony of the Night, Rondo of Blood is every bit as good and deserves just as much recognition.

Castlevania Legends

We are back to handheld Castlevania w/ a third entry on the GameBoy, but this time we are in a bit of an alternate timeline. Instead we play as one of the few female Belmont protags, Sonia Belmont. In this timeline, Sonia is actually the first hunter in her lineage and thus is the first to face Dracula. Even more interesting enough it seems that her and Alucard are a bit sweet on each other (understandable) and both wish to stop the old bat. This entry keeps a lot of the improvements that Belmont’s Revenge and puts a few twists on it. This time after defeating each boss, Sonia unlocks a new ability called a “soul weapon”. Some of these are extremely powerful but consume hearts to use (not health).

The combat is enjoyable and does not have the same ridiculously hard final boss as Belmont’s Revenge did.

Lewd? Nope, just some intimate talk w/ Alucard.
Recommend? Yes, though this game is no where near cannon it does create an interesting premise w/ solid gameplay and unique mechanics to back it up.

Super Castlevania IV

Despite being called IV, this game is more of a reboot of the original Castlevania. This entry was graphically and mechanically impressive as each level was redesigned entirely to showcase the capabilities of this new system. Wider range of colors and shadows were available, the ability to transition into the background during certain times, and the water and various environment affects and sprites were simply stunning. The gameplay mechanics allowed better control of the whip as you can no whip in more directions than before and even manually control it to the point where you could whip it in circles at the cost of movement. Some bosses were switched up while others were replaced entirely, providing both classic European monsters to some more unique entries. Either way they stood out and felt like proper bosses. Naturally I hated the mummy boss
Platforming was ultimately a new experience as the whip could now latch onto rings for you to swing from, and various capabilities allowed for massive maps.

Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes! This game not only showcased the power and capability of the SNES but made a generally great remake/reboot of the original.

April 2021 Part Deux
Finish him/her Them! - MK Series
Mortal Kombat Theme Song (Original) - The Immortals
Mortal Kombat Theme Song (2021) - Benjamin Wallfisch
Due to the Mortal Kombat movie coming out in April, the hype had lead me to play through some of the earlier games. Some of which I had not fully played. I tried to keep the reviews relatively short due to inexperience with creating collapsible reviews manually.
Onto other news, my recent move has finally finished and (after some organization) I should be hyper focused to backlog killing! \o/ This plus my increased resistance to buying new games should help reduce the mountain that I climb… assuming this heat doesn’t kill me first.

Mortal Kombat
The game that made people question the values of society and gaming. Much like the original game in a fighting game series, it introduces a basic mechanic but overall is massively flawed. The fighting is very basic w/ very little combo potential. A lot of the roster is relatively unbalanced with specials far superior than others. Combat is usually best to jumping kicks, upper cuts, and spamming projectiles. The final boss is at least interesting and not wildly unfair like most final fighting bosses. What made this game more unique, aside from a general focus on ninjas, is the amount of blood and violence that made (America at least) question the future of morals for kids, teens, and adults alike.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Meh. It’s pretty average at best while being second worst MK in my ranking.

Mortal Kombat II
Many praise this sequel and somewhat fairly so as it improves on the general combat of the first and brings the combo potential with more moves, bigger roster, and changes to existing moves. However, I have quite a different feeling towards this game as a solo player. The AI is absolutely ridiculous. Playing arcade mode will have enemies literally read your inputs to do perfect counters. This hardly results in improvements on the players end, but rather has the player using cheap moves and exploits against the AI (I.E. Baraka and his shredder move = a moth to flame for the AI). Additionally, Shao Kahn closer resembles what is wrong with most fighting bosses that remove any combo potential or use of most abilities. Of course, this can be in part of the reading inputs. Despite this obviously being a way to eat quarters in the arcade, it is still wildly unacceptable.
Lewd? It does ya dirty, but no lewd.
Recommend? Nope nope nope. Maybe against other people this game has redeeming qualities, but AI reading inputs is too much. This puts this at the bottom of my MK ranking without a doubt.

Mortal Kombat III
A huge improvement from MK2 and one of the better 2D MK games. This game introduces cool dark and urban in-depth arenas, a wide variety of new characters that break the ninja motif, and even more mobility/moves than before (including the ability to run). The AI is a little bit more well rounded and does not seem to read inputs thus removing the worst thing ever.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes, easily one of my top ranked MK games.

Mortal Kombat Trilogy
This conveys the gameplay and story of MK3, but adds characters and arenas from the previous two installments. Just as solid as MK3 and a bigger roster to boot.

Lewd? NOpe
Recommend? Yes

Mortal Kombat Gold
For the most part this is just MK3, but with a different cast of characters. The combat remained more of the same, but the game now has CG cutscenes for endings. The endings were incredibly short and offered very little story wise. However, they did tie into each other more so than usual, creating an overall picture rather than a personal ending. It’s biggest downfall is that it really didn’t add enough to really justify buying this release. Still the game is enjoyable enough.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes, again not too much changes from MK3 which is both a benefit and a con.

Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance
MK’s first addition to include 2.5D combat and multi-stance fighting. This game is more of an awkward teen as the new additions behaved a little awkward and overall felt a bit slower than both it’s predecessors and future installments. Each character holds 3 different stances, two hand to hand styles and a weapon stance. This opens up some combo potential, but also limits it drastically as switching stances can take time without inputting specific combos. The 2.5D transitions and graphics are pretty mediocre with more emphasis on the graphics. Interesting enough, this is also an entry that did away with main protagonist Liu Kang and introduced a new cast of characters to take his place. Somewhat trying to revitalize the series with a new hero similar to what Tekken 3 did. The new characters, however, are rather uninteresting and quickly forgotten in future installments. The final bosses are the deadly alliance themselves and fairly fair for fighting. That being said the “Goro” of this game (the monstrous intermission you have to face as a sub-boss) more than makes up for the lack of stacked difficulty against the player from the actual bosses.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Generally, yes, It is lower on the ranking but still an interesting and enjoyable fighting game. Definitely the weaker of the 2.5 games.

Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time
My distaste for Tools of Destruction was massively removed as A Crack in Time feels a little more like Ratchet & Clank and showcases the visual capabilities of the PS3. Unlike the previous entry, this games weapons have satisfying feelings as you use them. Graphics are surprisingly beautiful, and best of all the story is one of the best despite splitting up our two heroes for the majority of the game. Just when you can’t think it can be better, you realize that motion controls have been reduced greatly.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes, easily one of my favorite entries particularly of the Future trilogy.

April 2021 Part 1
Featured game track from Wasted: Supernova - Mike Daw, Jenny Ramage
Bonus Track from Wasted: I Just Can’t Say No - Michael James Getches, Calvin Ross Pfeffer, Eric Vasquez
(Couldn’t find a good quote from the games this month, so subbing in a song track I found great. May or may not be adding this into my future posts)

So, this month was relatively active and long. So much so that I will actually be splitting my progress into two posts. This will focus more on Steam and the next will be outside of Steam. As you may have noticed, I am still quite behind on my updates. This is in part due to increased work load on my job, various other stressors, and my plans for moving. On the upside, I did find a place and got the internet set up. So, we are getting a little closer to a preferred state of being. All of this is obviously affecting my writing and thought process for reviews, so apologies in advance. Other than that, let’s get this started and a little more caught up.

Top 3 Recommended Games: Wasted, Metal Slug 3, Costume Quest

    Audiosurf 2

    Audiosurf 2

    2 hours playtime

    A somewhat unique rhythm game that’s more about building up your block combo without redeeming it until you are full rather than just getting every note you see. This gives the player to study the track more and deploy strategy with quick reaction timing. There are also various other modes to vary the gameplay widely. A decent assortment of songs that are quite enjoyable and can even use your owned music for even more content.

    Lewd? Nope, just vibe (or whatever it is you do with music)

    Recommend? Though I prefer the max-combo get-every-note style of rhythm games, I can certainly see the appeal and suggest people give this a try.

    Beyond Eyes

    Beyond Eyes

    2 hours playtime

    Ever wonder what it’s like to be blind? Well you can stop trying to pour bleach in your eyes, because this game might just be for you. Jokes aside, this is actually a pretty sad story of a little girl who has an unfortunate incident with some fireworks on her birthday. Things start to look up turn for the better when she befriends a cat. But back down the hill we go when the cat goes missing and you must make your way through an uncertain and scary world as you hope to find the cat once more.
    Though you are blind, you actually get to see the immediate area around you and it slowly draws in as you venture forth (similar to a fog of war) Various sounds and scents will have a colored line leading to them. It is understandable, but your movement is quite slow in this game with some pretty big areas to try and scout around which makes an already slow-paced game slower.

    Lew… We are just going to throw this one away this time, alright?

    Recommend? Generally yes, but more of a on the fence recommendation. You are more playing a slow-paced story than an actual game. It’s about as walking sim as you get.

    Freedom Planet

    Freedom Planet

    4 hours playtime

    You like Sonic the Hedgehog? Well this is like Sonic’s Fanfic loving cousin. You can either play as a couple anthropomorphic animals/creatures such as a dragon who travels at the speed of sound noise and a sassy cat with a motorcycle (with only one tail). Almost immediately the characters reference past events and groups that you have no knowledge about and somehow expects you to understand (Don’t worry, there is not much more context given later). Essentially the story goes that an alien invades an opposing nation and uses it to try and conquer the world and possibly get some sort of crystal that the nations use for power. You, a randomish traveler, must stop this puppet nation while not being caught by your own government. The voice acting is decent while the writing is …okay, but somehow when they were combined it just seemed off and weird. Perhaps a matter of taste.
    Much like the sonic games, there is a large focus on speed w/ minimal combat and some platforming all while facing each stage boss. Most of the stages have decent designs, but I would have liked to see a little more paths to take as I frequently found myself having to slow down to figure out how to proceed because there were certain mechanics or devices not explained.

    Lewd? Nope, go back to your filthy Sonic fanfics you weirdy.

    Recommend? Sure, the game is enjoyable enough and if you can figure out how to do your various abilities you can enjoy this game well enough.

    Grey Cubes

    Grey Cubes

    3 hours playtime

    This is Breakout (see Atari game) but with a bunch of weird additions that no one wanted. What if various pillars began to rise? Or an annoying teleporter sent your ball somewhere else, or perhaps have multiple layers to the level? I understand they are trying to reinvent the wheel here by adding something to an old classic, but this simply got to be too much.
    I guess to briefly explain the gameplay: A ball bounces around, you control a paddle that moves left to right that can hit this ball back up in order to break all the blocks. Simple enough, then you get various power ups at random and various modifiers to obstruct your ball.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? No, the various obstacles just got to be too annoying and, in some cases, felt there was a bit of RNG to getting some of those blocks.

    Guns'N'Zombies

    Guns'N'Zombies

    3 hours playtime

    Top down zombie shooter with objectives and some tower defense elements. The game is alright enough but can be a bit rough if you do not grind some of the levels to upgrade your abilities or guns. Specifically, any escort-esque mission is going to suck without some serious firepower and strategy. Other than that, your main goal is to get through each mission which will either comprise of survive waves, protect area/vehicle, collect items, or kill boss.

    Lewd? Nope, just zombie guts.

    Recommend? Meh, it’s alright enough, but nothing special.

    Hammerwatch

    Hammerwatch

    21 hours playtime

    Dungeon-crawler that you can play with up to 4 people. Various classes are available that start with a basic attack and one ability, which each can unlock additional activate abilities and passive through stores. Go through 4 stages of multi-floored dungeons to collect gold, improve stats & abilities, and items. I really must emphasize the importance of co-op in this game. This game becomes so much longer and slow-paced on solo. Had I not had a friend who was eager to play this, it would have been a real slog.
    The level design is decent and most of the enemies are okay (though some are absolutely terrible to have to fight against) while the combat is fairly simple.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? No, due to the fact that without friends this game can wear on you especially if it is already not something you normally would go for.

    Homefront

    Homefront

    4 hours playtime

    A fairly standard COD-like FPS but instead of having to do anything with WW2 or Russians, the story actually revolves around the Korean invasion of America. The game starts out fairly post invasion as you are being transported by the Korean military (during which you see all sorts of cruelty). Lucky for you, you caught the eye of the resistance as a pilot and they secure you with the help of definitely-not-Frank-Woods with anger issues.
    My biggest issue is how they gate your progression through each level. No matter how fast you are, you are always waiting on an NPC to either open a door or move an obstacle out of the way. There are so many times I am just sitting and waiting for them to do so that it just gets to be infuriating. Like, do my hands only know how to shoot gun and fly plane? Can I not do these things? Despite the fact you were recruited for your piloting skills, you only really fly for one mission and relatively short one at that. That being said the game is actually quite short as well and ends a little abruptly (no doubt hoping to make a sequel).
    As expected, the multiplayer was dead as can be, but it was still cool to see just how big the maps were.

    Lewd? Nope, your gun is the only thing that goes pew pew.

    Recommend? The combat was fun enough and the opening was a little surreal, so sure.

    Knight Squad

    Knight Squad

    3 hours playtime

    Top-down party game that has you and other knights battling it out for objectives. Various objectives are rather standard (Team deathmatch, free for all, capture the zone, etc.) and various power ups will appear around the map. There is a single-player mode that has you doing more challenges and boss fights but rather short. This game isn’t really anything special and wouldn’t think it worth more than $.99. The game just doesn’t have any oomph to it and is kind of plain.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? No

    LIMBO

    LIMBO

    2 hours playtime

    This is one of those games I feel needs little introduction as it was one of the greater influences on darker platform side scrollers more focused on puzzles and traps than actual combat and death is more of a lesson than a punishment. To get to the premise, you are a little boy making his way through a dark and unknown world. Anything you do can get you killed. Since the world is comprised of black and white, with very few shades in between, you will need to make out traps and potential dangers from the shapes you see. Though, despite some of your best efforts you will likely have to learn by dying. Otherwise, no puzzle solving is usually too ridiculous (other than a few gravity/physics-based ones and can be completed without too much frustration.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? Yes, a bit of a classic at this point and enjoyable if you can ignore it’s attempt at creating a deepest and interpretive story.

    METAL SLUG 3

    METAL SLUG 3

    2 hours playtime

    Truly a classic side scrolling shooter. Take control of 1 out of 4 army personnel to take on the dictator and his army filled with various mutated creatures and crazy machines. Save POW’s to get bonus score and upgrades, find vehicles, and never stop shooting. The combat is fluid, the levels are well built, and the sprites (oh my god the sprites) are some of the best sprites I have seen to this day. If you haven’t played it, then you should If you have played it, you should play it again.

    Lewd? No

    Recommend? Yes, very much so.

    Mini Metro

    Mini Metro

    5 hours playtime

    At first I thought this might be some relaxing game as the music is ambient, the dings of the couple of trams getting to each stop were melodious, and you could just sort of watch the train lines you go back and forth. This quickly turns to panic and anxiety as more and more stations pop up and you only have so many lines and trains while you realize you need another tunnel to get across the river and you have none and the blue train line extends have the map and can barely keep up. Your once short and beautifully planned routes soon turn to horrendous loops as chaos ensues. This wouldn’t be so much of a problem if you didn’t have to get a certain score to unlock more maps. Even worse, a lot of these maps are pretty bland with small variances in river/mountain placement.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? Not really, the gameplay isn’t very exciting and gets old fast. If it geared more towards a calm ASMR tranquil vibe, I could get it. Or if it was a little more competitive and structured, I could get that. However, it seems to miss both marks.

    Monaco

    Monaco

    6 hours playtime

    Top down stealth game that requires you to use various characters in order to infiltrate some top notch security. Various characters have special abilities such as knocking out guards, hacking computer systems, lockpicking adept, breaking through walls, etc. However, once dead you will have to leave the corpse of your body behind until the next level (revive system is available in multiplayer). Go for the goal of the map and, if you are daring, collect all the coins and cash along the way.
    This game was interesting at first, but even with friends grew boring quick. Perhaps my stealth is not as good as I would like, but I eventually found death marches just became the quickest and best way to deal with later maps.

    Lewd? Despite the Redhead (character name) ability to woo enemies, no lewdness here.

    Recommend? This game was recommended to me for a stream, but I can not recommend it myself. Simply grows old too fast.

    Risk of Rain

    Risk of Rain

    4 hours playtime

    I’m not really sure what the synopsis of this game is other than get power ups to get to get to the last level, to fight the boss, to fly the ship away. This was mostly just another reminder that I don’t really like rogue-likes other than Binding of Isaac. Like most rogue-likes there are a bunch of different classes, most will have to be unlocked by playing.
    The 2D pixel combat is kind of subpar in my opinion as it’s kind of hard to tell what is actually happening. I just know that I would press buttons, abilities would happen, I would probably hit the enemy and maybe all my health would just disappear from something.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? Nope

    Stacking

    Stacking

    4 hours playtime

    Semi-interesting concept of playing a little Russian stacking doll who can stack inside someone one size larger than him to control their movement and abilities. You can continue to stack so long as the next person is one size larger. This creates a HITMAN style gameplay where there are multiple ways to complete a task using various abilities and disguises. If you want to immediately try one of the other solutions after completion, you are able. I was generally for this, but not so much for the story and cinematics. Though neat that it was set in the Industrial Age and cinematics had that old silent film setup, I really could care less for it.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? Fun enough little puzzle game, for the right discounted price I recommend.

    Super Cyborg

    Super Cyborg

    6 hours playtime

    A love letter to Contra, if you will, this new retro game provides a blast to the past to the modern day. If you are not familiar, it is mostly side scrolling platform (w/ some top down portions) shooter w/ challenging levels and difficult bosses. You start out with a machine gun like weapon and can get various upgrades to change the bullet spread, frequency, and damage. Each weapon has a charged special. The premise seems to be you are a cyborg fit on destroying an army of mutating insect-like creatures that are amassing far too quickly. The game really is just a solid return to classic platform shooters, not too much more to say about this.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? Yes, difficult but fun.

    Talisman: Digital Edition

    Talisman: Digital Edition

    3 hours playtime

    Board game gone digital. Pick your class w/ their own abilities, roll your dice to move, determine attack power, and/or do an event. The map is made up of 3 layers of square outlines where your goal is to ultimately get to the center. Transitioning to each layer requires various, but varied pre-requisites. The final layer is the hardest as you can only move one square at a time and MUST pass the various battles/dice rolls in order to proceed. Though you can respawn infinitely, once someone enters the final square, all deaths are final and the last one standing is the victor. The art is heavily old-school fantasy.
    My luck on average is terrible so naturally my dice rolls are terrible (traumatic flashbacks to %100 Orange Juice), still I imagine with a group of friends even I could enjoy this.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? If you are a board game enthusiast, then yes. Traditional video gamer? Probably not.

    Titan Souls

    Titan Souls

    3 hours playtime

    The Souls-like of Souls-like games. Well… not really, but this did emerge during that boom of those games and that phrasing. Quite a simple game at that as it has the most basic mechanics and simple goal, kill the boss. No enemies in between. Simply enter the boss door and do battle. Here comes the “souls-like” addition to it, you can dodge roll and you can only get hit once before dying. In fairness, the boss also only takes one hit, but the difference is that you must figure out their gimmick and weak point while your whole body is just a walking danger area. To make matters worse, you are armed with a boy and only one arrow. You can repick up this arrow or call it to you (done right, this can also hit the boss w/ enough speed). You’ll have to kill enough bosses to open up the gate to the next area or just kill them all.
    Despite the dramatic sucking in a boss soul after each victory, you don’t actually get any stronger or new abilities, which is a little disappointing. However, this is all about challenge so just do it Soul Level 1 n00b 😉

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? It’s alright enough. Nothing great, nothing terrible.

    Town of Salem

    Town of Salem

    50 minutes playtime

    The “Among Us” before Among Us. Get assigned a role and work with the town to slowly figure out the killers. There is a little more complication than that as there are multiple groups of killers and a wild card that can take either side. The actual villagers need to use their roles to figure out the imposters the jailer detains and questions, the escort stops a user from using their role’s ability for the night, etc.
    The game seems alright enough, though not so sure I would want to play with a bunch of randoms. Luckily, if you are interested in this sort of thing, the game doesn’t seem to be quite dead yet as I found little issue finding a random game. Unfortunately for me, a lot of these people are long time players and use lingo that I was not familiar with. Drawing suspicion on myself more as I was adjusting to the game.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? Eh, I would personally not play this again, but can still recommend people look into it if given a cheap or free chance.

    Vertical Drop Heroes HD

    Vertical Drop Heroes HD

    4 hours playtime

    Rogue-like that, as you may guess, has a focus on you playing heroes that must make their way down long shafts of monsters, quests, items, etc. You will slowly unlock more classes and spells/abilities as you either find or buy them.
    Even for rogue-likes, this game really isn’t all that special. It’s okay at the best of times and annoying at the worst. The final boss being just that. I needed some luck and a very solid build in order to best his many reiterations.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommened? Nope, just another fairly plain rogue-like with subpar visuals and underwhelming gameplay.

    WASTED

    WASTED

    19 hours playtime

    This was an unexpected gem that I did not honestly think I would enjoy so much when I first looked into it. This is essentially Fallout if the bombs dropped in the 80s (this means 80s style music on the radio, citizens wearing leg warmers and headbands, 80's action heroes impersonations and various other 80's movie references) and had Wild Wasteland turned up to 11 (just overall not taking itself seriously). You, and many other wastelanders, are trying to get in each bunker that holds irradiated alcoholic beverages to not only get wasted but mutate with special Fallout-like perks. Of course, it’s not so simple. Each floor is randomly generated and depending on the bunker can have bandits, bots, ghouls, and mutants all wanting to kill you. If that’s not so bad, each floor has a time limit before the “Purifier” comes down which is essentially a power armored soldier w/ a machine gun and a sole purpose to dispose of you. On top of all that, if you want the real good perks w/ no draw backs… you gotta go deep into the bunker to get them. Otherwise you could end up making yourself weaker.

    One of the few major downsides to this game is that you can’t enter the bunkers until you drink and get your perk this becomes worse when you are farming perks and must go several floors each time just to get one perk and automatically leave. This only gets real soul crushing as when you die, you lose all perks and any items you had on you. Items are easy enough as you can collect as much as you need and store in your hub. Your perks though… that’s a much bigger loss. I would have liked some sort of safety perk that lets you randomly keep half of your perks or make it so that you can decide when to finish a bunker (i.e. you can collect multiple perks before leaving).

    Also, despite being able to customize your character in the beginning, you won’t ever see their face again and if you die, you get a randomly generated new character.

    Other than that gameplay is pretty much 1 to 1 with Fallout, but I haven’t even got to the best part, the radio music! I enjoyed every song they had available on the radio in game and really wish it was available to purchase as a soundtrack. The mixture of 80’s synth vibes gave me the vigor to grind through each bunker and beneficial ear worms to have throughout the work day. There is a story, and thus an end, but you can always play new game plus or return to the moment before you beat the game if you wish to grind more. Either way, you don’t lose everything regardless of your choice.

    Lewd? Kinda, mostly jokes and humorous suggestions. Nothing explicit.

    Recommend? Very much so. Despite being a rogue-like, I really felt the strong Fallout influence which came with solid gameplay. There could be more to it and changes, but still an enjoyable experience.

    Costume Quest

    Costume Quest

    6 hours playtime

    Cute basic RPG game that has you and some newfound friends dress up during Halloween and fight monsters. Your costume is your power as it both will change your abilities/attacks in battle and abilities when traversing the world. The combat is incredibly simple (similar to The Stick of Truth) as you will have attack, defend, and ability (which is only 1 ability per costume and must charge up after x turns). This can be both a positive and a negative as this means easy to understand combat, but also removes any chance of having creative solutions or fighting that can really suit you. I even found that some costumes were borderline mandatory for combat while most others were fairly useless. On top of this, each character gets to equip a sticker which grants them additional buffs and abilities. These can either be found in the world or bought from the sticker emporium.

    The story is fairly solid, nothing special, but gives you reason to keep going door to door either getting straight candy or fighting the ghouls of the night. Essentially you and your twin sibling are going out to trick or treat all the while fighting with each other. That is until… your sibling is stolen by monsters and you must save them!

    All in all the combat is simple, but engaging enough (though reseeing some supers or executing the same solid strategy gets old fast. The DLC continues the story, but is more of the same with new monsters, costumes, and area.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? Yup

    Ghost Encounters: Deadwood - Collector's Edition

    Ghost Encounters: Deadwood - Collector's Edition

    3 hours playtime
    no achievements

    Point and Click x Hidden Object Game that tasks you, a paranormal investigator with psychic powers, to investigate the missing of several people in a ghost town thought to be haunted by an old evil bandit ghost. The point-and-click is pretty standard enough and the hidden object games come randomly, but they do what you expect. The big issue comes in on where you have to click and the protagonist’s refusal to hang onto items. There are times you need an item and you would go to the place you would think to get it (I.e. a hammer might be found at the blacksmith’s place). However, that is not always the case. There are plenty of times you have to click on a box you have previously searched that you would have no reason to even think to check this particular place again. Also, the frequency you re need an item (such as a hammer), your character still feels the need to throw it out after 1 use. This is only made worse when you later need a hammer again an must click some random spot to do a Hidden Object minigame to find it.

    Lewd? No

    Recommend? Honestly, the game just got to frustrating when there were parts that were just not intuitive whatsoever to finding items or solutions. It’s also quite easy to miss some areas entirely.

March 2021
If I die here, it means I’m not the hero. The hero is supposed to survive to the end. So… I guess that makes me the villain. The villain is always supposed to take the hero’s side right before dying. - Metal Gear Acid
(All the quotes I wanted to use this month were so long. Guess you will just have to play them to find out! Most notably from Metal Gear: Peace Walker)

Another month I am far too late on catching up on, but here I am. Luckily March was a shorter month of games, though I spent plenty of hours on them (particularly with my beloved MGS games). Hopefully once I start and finish to move I will get some much needed comfort and freedom to be up to date on these. Anyways, let’s get to it as I have another couple of months to catch up on.

    BlazBlue: Continuum Shift Extend

    BlazBlue: Continuum Shift Extend

    24 hours playtime

    (Fighting/Visual Novel)
    This sequel to Calamity Trigger not only serves as a continuation of the story, but improves upon the original as well. Haven’t played Calamity Trigger? Good news as this game includes the original campaign with a more straightforward single path to play through. Calamity Trigger storyline also has been updated visually with animated scenes from Production I.G.
    The new campaign still has similar branching paths as the original did, but improved on this as well. The complex paths of the original game were a problem, so much so that this game even has a scene where a character makes fun of it. So, instead, they made it so there are only three different endings (Gag, Bad/Normal, and True endings) for each character and no longer have to criss cross wins and loses along your path. Each ending also felt much more enjoyable and if you perchance get a bad ending, it is always followed up by a humorous bit where Professor Kokonoe assists the character to know where they went wrong in a 4th wall breaking skit.
    Fighting mechanics are still pretty close to the original with some slight tweaks and some new twists. Every character is back with a few additions.
    Lewd? Other than a few suggestive lines, nope!
    Recommend? Absolutely, with the inclusion of the original game’s campaign even players new to the series can start here.

    HuniePop 2: Double Date

    HuniePop 2: Double Date

    21 hours playtime

    Genre (Puzzle/Lewd)
    Back at it again, but this time you gotta stop the apocalypse by going on double dates. This “Match-3” game takes the original puzzle dating game and adds a twist where you can switch between people during the date to focus the puzzle pieces towards their criteria. This new addition means a few new challenges including stamina (lowers each time a move is made on that person) and baggage which randomly selects one of few issues that date has to create an extra challenge during that date instance.
    The game still does well with these new additions to gameplay and the background music helps create your environment as 2D as it is. The dialogue however… is a bit everywhere. You will range from humorous bits, genuine conversation to some “Why would you say that?” or “Please… stop talking” moments.
    Lewd? Very much so.
    Recommend? Only to those who meet the age requirements, but yes, a genuine puzzle game.

    Tadpole Tales

    Tadpole Tales

    2 hours playtime

    Genre (Shoot ‘Em Up)
    A free game that designed to raise awareness on how pollution and waste can cause issues in the environment. You play a tadpole that must face hand drawn creatures corrupted by pollution and cleanse them back into their cute forms. This game is both challenging as it is cute as you must go down the river to defeat 3 areas and bosses. Your tadpole can get up to 4 health with each health upgrading your tadpole into a borderline frog while giving it better cleansing bubbles. Even if you manage to beat the game once, there is a harder mode in wait and a few achievements that suggest even further challenges.

    Lewd? Not here.

    Recommend? Yes. A cute challenging game that does well both in it’s gameplay and the ideals it represents.

Metal Gear Acid
(Genre: Tactics/Deck Builder)
Tactical Espionage Action turned Card game Tactics. A surprisingly fit for a new twist on the well-established series. Visually the game is very similar to MGS1 and 2 with darker shades along with a twisted and convoluted (maybe over convoluted) story that I love so much about the series. Speaking of visuals, the art for each character is so good. It maintains the dark themes the surroundings and story provide. The gameplay, however, seems to dip away from the fluid nature of the previous MGS games. Though you do get to deck build and customize to your preference and the mission, there really is little to no pacifist or non-lethal routes to go. As well, the limitations to your movement can be annoying as once you choose to crouch/prone, you are committed to that action and will use up your few movement actions during the turn. This is especially painful when you believe you are able to crawl under a vehicle but turns out to be untrue, so movement and card wasted.
Another grievance I have for this game is there were so few bosses. This for me was always a highlight of the series of unique and twisted bosses Snake encounters, but there are only 3 total, some of which you fight multiple times with no change.
Still, I quite enjoyed this game and the story along with it, but long for improvements in the sequel.
Lewd? Nope.
Recommend? As a fan of Kingdom Hearts, I always appreciate games that switch up gameplay between side entries and this is no exception. For those who love Metal Gear and particularly deck building tactic games, this is very much recommended.

Metal Gear Acid 2
(Genre: Tactics/Deck Builder)
Despite being a sequel to Acid 1, this game actually switches things up quite a bit. The visuals are much brighter and more colorful (which is rather unlike MGS), but it does give you more actions and choices between lethal, non-lethal, etc (which is much closer to MGS). Crouching no longer takes up an action and thus you can toggle at your leisure. The story is a bit more straight forward but still carries the essence of MGS. Most importantly, WE GOT BOSSES, BABY! So much so that they actually advertise and stress it quite a bit in the opening cinematic. This game improves quite a bit on the original Acid 1 overall and truly succeeds it.
Lewd? Aside from some jiggle physics… nope.
Recommend? If you enjoyed the first Acid or enjoy Deck Building and Tactic genres, Very much so.

Metal Gear Portable Ops
Genre: (Third Person Shooter/Action-Adventure)
After MGS4 and the general conclusion of the series, Konami needed to figure out how to evolve and create more entries for the series. This game is more of a step in that direction than an actual entry. We return to the days of Naked Snake (Big Boss) post MGS3. This game continued CQC actions along with the ability to forcibly recruit enemy soldiers (which we see later in MGSV). However, the recruiting system is a pain as you need to drag them all the way back to your starting truck. This is made a little simpler by bringing recruits with you, moving them to a location they can hide in a box, and have them drag the person back. Still, this is a lot of leg work for potentially useless individuals. The levels you can play are quite repeated and generally small, lacking visually. The cinematics are the more appealing visuals as they are a comic book format with similar drawing style that you see on most early MGS games. Though the story (for all intensive purposes) as been generally retconned, I still believe it has a place in the MG lore as we do see some familiar faces and even give them backstory on how they joined up with the Boss. More enjoyably enough, the boss fights have the feel of a MGS boss fight with superhuman like qualities and needing to outwit your opponents with brains and reflex.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Despite my enjoyment of the game, it is still lacking (even for the PSP) visually, gameplay and control-wise. Only true hardcore fans of the series would this be a must play.

Metal Gear Peace Walker
(Third Person Shooter/Action-Adventure)
If Portable Ops was a step toward the next big entry, this was a leap. This game, despite being on the same console as MG:PO, was visually stunning, controlled far better, and included quality of life improvements that were much needed. Visually, oh my god, there is so much more depth and detail in this game that I honestly did not think possible thanks to Portable Ops. A wide color range that is fitting for the various eco systems of South America (this game’s locale) and creates a believable and realistic environment. Cinematics retained the comic book style that Portable Ops introduces, but with a little more animations and the ability to interact during certain scenes.
The story still follows Naked Snake post MGS3 and not long before MGS5. The story telling and grittiness feel much closer to the style of MGS3 and contains a lot of themes in regards to ideals and purpose. With some convolution and crazy tech, we can confirm this is a solid and very true story to the series. A variety of characters are introduced that Snake can talk with between cinematics and audio logs that help build both characters, thus enriching the story as you go. These audio logs also serve as a bit information in general for history, geography, zoology, plants, weapons, etc.
Gameplay is so very good. If you have played MGS5, you are pretty much playing MGS5. If not, the motion is fluid, direction easy to control, and more importantly items and weapons easily swappable. By the way, you remember the horrible recruiting system in Portable Ops? We now have the Fulton System! Just attach a fulton balloon to your target and awayyyy they go. The level design works as you are no longer attached to a single area for the mission, but areas linked together with loading transitions. This allows the same general areas to have a bit more variety and thus reusable for the many missions this game provides. By the way, bosses are strictly vehicle/mecha based. This does make sense for a series that calls itself Metal Gear, which they use as a name for a bipedal walking tank that can eject nuclear missiles. This does create a good change of pace, but I can’t help but miss the humanoid bosses with unique abilities. Also, there are loads of secrets, references, and even a crossover with Monster Hunter which is always much appreciated.

Lewd? You can go on a couple of dates, but nothing visually happens.
Recommend? Very much so. This game really does everything right for a handheld version of MGS and if you liked MGS5, this is just that but with no open world.

January 2021
Wake the **** up samurai, we have a game city to burn

Catching up for the months I missed this year before my April post. Luckily I did not have too much to cover.

    Borderlands GOTY

    Borderlands GOTY

    18 hours playtime

    After playing the various sequels it is quite difficult to enjoy the original game quite as much as I once did. There are simply a lack of quality life options and a quantity of generally bland dialogue and gameplay. Still, it is an enjoyable experience and recommended to those new to the series.

    Recommend? Yes, more so for those who are looking to dive into the series.

    Cyberpunk 2077

    Cyberpunk 2077

    47 hours playtime

    A bit of a mess release for a quite hyped game. Despite a lot of hate this game release, I still quite enjoyed the game. Various visual bugs were annoying but did not take much away from the experience. The only time I faced a game breaking bug was during the final mission where an exploded tank made it impossible for me to proceed without loading a previous save. Since then there have been quite a few patches slowly fixing this game. I’m quite excited to try another playthrough in the future once everything truly balances out.

    Lewd? Very much so There’s a penis size option for every gender

    Recommend? Despite the outcome, if you can get past the initial hype, it is still an enjoyable game with great dialogue and decent combat mechanics.

    Deep Rock Galactic

    Deep Rock Galactic

    7 hours playtime

    4-player objective game with character classes dealing with mining, guns, and dwarves. The feel of this game felt quite similar to that of Payday. Suffice to say, the game is alright, but I simply could not get into it.

    Lewd? Nope, only Rock and Stone.
    Recommend? Generally, no, but it’s not to say it is not bad. Simply not my thing.

    Dino D-Day

    Dino D-Day

    3 hours playtime

    Dinosaurs, Military, World War. This is the weird combination of a multiplayer based game where dinosaurs team up with both the Allies and the Axis. Surprisingly enough, there was still a game or two available, but otherwise a dead game. From my experience, the Axis raptors seemed very strong and hard to combat with most infantry on the Allies side.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Dead game = nope.

    Guns of Icarus Online

    Guns of Icarus Online

    4 hours playtime

    The game is dead and could only complete the tutorial. Really can’t say much after this.

    Recommend? Dead game = nope.

    FTL: Faster Than Light

    FTL: Faster Than Light

    14 hours playtime

    Difficult space rogue-like that has you manage your crew to various systems (shields, weapons, flight, etc.) as you must go through various space systems to the final boss while avoiding your pursuers. The game has quite a surprising amount of mechanics such as letting the vacuum of space take out the oxygen of rooms on fire to put them out or suffocate your enemies. Find scrap to repair your ship, buy crew members, or new weapon/technical systems. As you progress through the game, you can unlock additional starting ships/crews to spice up your playthroughs (assuming you manage to complete the game which took me several tries).

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, be the captain of your own ship and traverse space, the final frontier.

    Party Hard

    Party Hard

    4 hours playtime

    I really don’t have much to say about this. A bit of a Hitman-like game where you must slowly assassinate each party without being noticed. The kill setups were a little more lackluster and limited than what was expected. A lot of levels were reduced to excessive waiting as I needed the population to work to my needs.

    Lewd? Nope, but quite violent.
    Recommend? Not really, it turned out to be more tedious than enjoyable.

    There is no game: Jam Edition 2015

    There is no game: Jam Edition 2015

    24 minutes playtime

    Essentially a demo for There is No Game: Wrong Dimension. The crux, there is no game… unless you have anything to say about it. It’s you versus the narrator as you try to make a game out of his… not game. It’s comical, weird, and filled with puzzles.

    Lewd? Nope

    Recommend? Yes, a good chance to test out your want to play the full game (I plan on getting it sometime in the future).

February 2021
No quote due to lacking game content
So… it’s been a while. Since-last-year a while. Let’s just say a constant stream of stress and anxiety (with letting my reviews/posts build up on top of that) kind of got carried away. Either way, I am back and plan to slowly catch up on what’s been up with gaming for me as of late. Hopefully everyone’s year has been well and will continue to be. Well, to start off here’s February 2021. (This is also going to be out of order as I just realized I was looking at the wrong month in my recently played. whoops.)

    LEGO® Batman™ 3: Beyond Gotham

    LEGO® Batman™ 3: Beyond Gotham

    10 hours playtime

    Lego Batman is back with more characters than ever. Unfortunately, with each entry in the LEGO game series, I grow more uninterested despite having a small itch to play. In part this is due to the LEGO games introducing actual dialogue for the characters instead of general noises and some form of charade. I found the charade speech far more humorous while the dialogue in these later games made it more of a serious story than the usual comedy LEGO was known for. The gameplay is about the same as most in this series. Each character has their own ability to help conquer puzzles and foes while also building solutions out of Legos. The game is arguably the easiest in the series that I have played where bosses felt very weak in both difficulty and design. Lastly, there seemed to be a number of nearly game breaking bugs where my characters would either get stuck permanently or have various graphical errors. The greatest distaste is the amount of DLC that is being charged for this game. After all, the original target audience is children, yet multiple DLCs with little content and high prices is simply ridiculous.

    Recommend? Generally, yes, but at a discount.

    Outland

    Outland

    5 hours playtime

    A sort of metroidvania and bullet-hell arcade combo. The main mechanic is the ability to shift between two colors (red/blue) to negate damage from energy orbs and/or deal damage to enemies. There was not much of a terribly interesting story behind the game, nor did I find the gameplay itself particularly engaging. However, with the main mechanic it strives for, it does well to incorporate it throughout the game. Puzzles, platforms, and enemies need you to be on your toes and shift colors on the fly to succeed and move on. The boss fights were entertaining and provided the occasional challenge to give the game some much needed spice.

    Recommend? Yes

    The Forest

    The Forest

    31 hours playtime

    Having supported this game in it’s early access, I thought it about time to finally return and beat the story of this game. For those not familiar, this is a survival game with horror aspects as you find yourself stranded on an island where cannibals have taken your son. The survival and build portion of the game was surprisingly limited. There were only so man build options for this game, some of which can cause issues with other buildings you create. Other buildings had invisible walls and issues for carts you can build. There is no undo when creating blueprints. Some resources are just far too scarce and impossible to get (i.e. raccoon skin) thus making simple inventions not worth the effort.
    There is a decent amount of “deepest lore” as most of the story is told through items you find with very few having dialogue or text. As well, the more you explore the island the more horrors you truly find await you as your quest to find your son continues. Once you do complete the story, the limiting building you can do and the post-story rewards do not leave much for you to continue to enjoy and thus the game comes to a fairly quick stop.

    Recommend? Overall, yes. I can only imagine this game only gets better with friends, but a first time through creates an enjoyable and genuinely scary experience. Discount suggested.

    Cherry Tree High I! My! Girls!

    Cherry Tree High I! My! Girls!

    3 hours playtime
    no achievements

    The sequel to Cherry Tree High Comedy Club, you return to see the comedy club flourished with recruited members as well as following the story of a potential new recruit with some fame behind them. Despite being the second in the series, this game steps away from the multi-path adventure visual novel (choices, walking around, time management) and goes full linear visual novel. This felt much more of a side story as there did not appear to be a greater theme behind the story it told. It felt closer to being a bridge to the next greater arc. An intermission as the Comedy Club started to hold their meetings and the members finding their place and where their paths will take them… without actually getting to those destinations… yet. There is still a decent amount of jokes and comedic moments but is toned down a bit from the previous entry.

    Recommend? I can’t say either way. More of an Okay+ where it was generally good, but nothing with any real substance.

Metroid Prime 2: Echoes
As far as the Prime series goes, this was probably my least favorite of the bunch so far. Despite feeling relatively Metroid-y, it felt overcomplicated with the addition of two additional ammo types to keep track of, a “dark world” to traverse in and out of, a ramp up in difficulty, and generally confusing level design. The introduction of light and dark ammo was interesting at first, but needing to use light ammo to get dark ammo and vice versa created an annoying necessity to try and keep them balanced. The level design and trying to figure out what exactly was next was unclear at best. Despite giving you a general place to go, there were multiple points in the game that I was just simply lost on either where or how to proceed (particularly in the Bog world). Even with the ability to scan, some bosses required a specific action that could have been explained better. Despite these errors, the game still felt very much like Metroid and trying to restore the light for the Mothmen in a darkening world was a good fit. Bosses that did not require a weird action to defeat were enjoyable and made good use of your various equipment.

Recommend? Despite being my least favorite in the Prime series (due to overcomplexity and frustrations) this was still a very enjoyable game and absolutely recommend to fans of the Metroid series.

Metroid Prime 3: Corruption
Samus debuts on the Nintendo Wii with Corruption as it takes full liberty with the motion controller for aiming and various actions. It did seem that since this was a new platform for Metroid and innovative controls (for the time) they toned down the difficulty quite a bit to the point where the game was generally a breeze in comparison to it’s much harder prequel. This game also took on a mulch more cinematic approach as you find yourself in a narrative with unique characters and dialogue. A focus on story did take away from the Metroid experience and felt much less like a Metroid game and closer to a standard FPS. The level design and tracking were a little more straight forward with only a few points where there is some unclearness as far as next steps. Other than that, it is pretty consistent with the Prime series as a whole and the use of the motion controller to aim your arm canon just works. If anything, using the motion controller for even the simplest of actions (such as grabbing power cells) seemed a bit gratuitous).

Recommend? Yes. Though a bit on the easy side and a little too cinematic, the game is still an enjoyable adventure and (as of right now) conclusion to the series.