Bangledeschlers Completion Addiction. Bangledeschler’s profile

Twitch: ! Screen Thieves
PSN Dated

XBOX


July 2022
The genius of the hole: no matter how long you spend climbing out, you can still fall back down in an instant. – Max Payne 2
Life knows two miseries; getting what you don’t want and not getting what you want. – Max Payne 2

Again, not a terribly productive month, but I did at least knock out 2 of my 3 Summer Steam Sale purchases. DBD, of course, is still taking some of that time particularly since the latest perk/progression overhaul, the new tome release, and soon Project W.

Until next time.

    Inscryption

    Inscryption

    14 hours playtime

    Rouge-like card game with escape room elements that just might be more than it appears to be. There is so much charm and style to this game, it’s great. Simply put, it was hard to put down and just when you think you have mastered it, it throws a curveball to keep you changing your strategy. The characters in this game felt like they had a lot of depth despite not getting a lot of straight forward interactions. As well, all of the hidden secrets were enjoyable to figure out and find, even if I did not get all of them.

    Lewd? Nope.
    Recommend? Yes, even now I’m tempted to reinstall and go another round.

    Grand Theft Auto IV: The Complete Edition

    Grand Theft Auto IV: The Complete Edition

    35 hours playtime

    Base line: It’s another GTA game. The story is a little less disjointed in San Andreas and your environment has a much-needed compactness to it (i.e. no more travelling long deserts across map every other mission). The story was generally fine, but it lacked any real impact. Most of the events felt random and the missions that seemed to be the most related to your story just kind of happened or were a little random. Another con to this game is that there were a lot of radio stations, but nothing really piqued my fancy. There was also a sort of hangout system where calling or accepting random requests from friends will earn their favor. I believe leveling friendships up enough give you perks, but I honestly never bothered with any of that.

    My greatest compliment to this game is that in-game ran pretty smooth considering the original release. Despite the graphics being quite underwhelming even for it’s time, the smooth frame rate was quite welcome.

    The two expansions followed two fairly minor characters. Both have similar issues in regards to story. The first expansion “The Lost” is pretty terrible as you are often stuck following someone else with some very subpar missions and weird setups. The second DLC BoGT is much more refined and consistent experience. The missions feel very much what a GTA game should have with plenty of vehicles while being generally enjoyable.

    Lewd? Kinda.
    Recommend? Kinda. If you like the GTA formula, this will most likely be up your alley. Again, a lot of the major plot points felt underwhelming but overall gameplay was decent. It was just too much for my liking.

    Magicka 2

    Magicka 2

    3 hours playtime

    The 1-4 robed wizards are back and kinda better than ever. Off on yet another adventure as the last remaining few from the pointless wizard wars of last game. The game is far more digestible than the last, for better or worse. A measly 9 levels to magic your way through and possibly some DLC that I did not have.
    Wether or not you wanted more content, I can at least say that this entry is far more single player friendly. Having quick cast spells, the ability to cast revive on yourself, and much easier combat/scenarios. That being said this game still has puzzles that are very multi person oriented and of course more friends more fun.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes.

    Max Payne 3

    Max Payne 3

    9 hours playtime

    Everything that made the Max Payne series stand from other shooters is now gone. The unique art-style/comic panels: gone, noir sort of setting/storytelling: no more, semi-logical detective character: non-existant. Instead we get a little too modern type of game with decent shooting but absolutely terrible writing. I understand Max may be not what he used to be after years of pills, alcohol, and depression. However, whatever was left of him in this is not even recognizable with some of the decisions and logic he runs with. Gunplay is great, but it kind of ends there. The game constantly slows you down at every transition and severely limits your inventory now only really able to hold 3 guns so long as you never dual wield.

    Lewd? There are some boobas and lewd acts in the background, but only for a brief moment.
    Recommend? Not really. The game isn’t terrible and generally feels decent to play, but it is most definitely not a “Max Payne” game past the name.

    THE KING OF FIGHTERS 2002 UNLIMITED MATCH

    THE KING OF FIGHTERS 2002 UNLIMITED MATCH

    4 hours playtime

    A decent entry in the KoF series. The sprites seemed to be slightly less than ’98 but overall, pretty much the same gameplay. Some new characters including powerful bosses from previous entries. Not much else to say.

    Lewd? Some scantily clad fighters of both genders, but that’s about it.

    Recommend? Yes, but you may be better just getting the KoF ‘98

    THE KING OF FIGHTERS XIII STEAM EDITION

    THE KING OF FIGHTERS XIII STEAM EDITION

    4 hours playtime

    A little more modern KoF and even has a few bells and whistles such as a Tutorial and Story mode. Unfortunately, the story mode is pretty bare bones and has cons such as auto advancing text and choppy scenes. The gameplay has a much more emphasis on drive canceling which at least separates itself slightly from the rest, but isn’t entirely a new concept either. Despite my history with fighting games, cancels have always been my weak area. That said, getting a hang of it for the purpose of story and beating wasn’t too terrible.

    Lewd? Nothing that isn’t true for most Fighters.

    Recommend? Kind of? Again, it can’t beat KoF ’98 but at least is a more modern entry and tries to evolve. A lot of the new additions feel very undercooked.

    Yakuza: Like a Dragon

    Yakuza: Like a Dragon

    111 hours playtime

    A legendary series turned turn-based JRPG and honestly… it works. Leading with a new protagonist we get another great entry in the Yakuza series. Just like the rest of the series, the story is well fleshed out with plenty of turns and heartbreak as well as feel good moments and humor. The combat is pretty standard turn-based JRPG with some added bits such as being able to perfect block attacks or increase damage by hitting the appropriate buttons. All of the party members had plenty of character in them. As well as various characters, there are a plethora of classes/jobs to level up and switch to giving you more unique gameplay potential. On top of that, leveling up jobs occasionally lets you keep skills across classes meaning it’s worth it to level up each one. Finally, the post-game isn’t particularly jaw dropping, but there are some challenging dungeons and, as always, a lot of minigames (both new and old) to spend time on.
    Best Boys: Joon-gi han, Zhao
    Best Girls: Eri, Saeko
    Best Jobs: Dealer, Chef, Hero,

    Lewd? Suggestive themes, but much more tame than previous entries.
    Recommend? Absolutely. A refreshing change of pace and unique take on the series. Ichiban absolutely kills it as a new protagonist and there is so much content and enjoyment in every inch of this game.

Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne
PS2
A much needed advancement in gameplay as it refines the noir action shooter. Not without a cost. We lose a little bit of the same tongue in cheek remarks and unique character design. Max, though still very detective and noir, feels just a little bit more of a generic action hero both in looks and personality.

Lewd? Some suggestive scenes, but nothing explicit.

Recommend? Yes, still very much a Max Payne game with improved gameplay.

June 2022

It’s a little sad to see that I am not beating/completing games at the rate I used to. A mix between work and disinterest definitely has a role to play. Getting back onto DBD definitely hasn’t helped either. I’ve also ended up purchasing games from the Summer Sale (Inscryption, Jedi Fallen Order, and Max Payne 3), but it was only due to risks of being spoiled for those games. On the flipside, I did immediately beat 2 out of 3 of those games so more on those on the next post. In the mean time, keep calm and carry on.

    ENSLAVED™: Odyssey to the West™ Premium Edition

    ENSLAVED™: Odyssey to the West™ Premium Edition

    7 hours playtime

    Mech post-apocalyptic adaptation of Journey to the West. It combines some basic hack and slash elements with platforming. Despite all the potential value here, it is all rather subpar. The combat isn’t very engaging, the platforming is pretty standard, and the story is held together by strings. Playing as a Son Wukong variant you escape a slaver ship only to become enslaved to a fellow prisoner who needs you for her own purposes. As you travel together you will be assaulted by her constant telling you what you need to do next despite you needing to run around and grab materials for upgrades. The actual dialogue between the two is weird and there is a lot of uncomfortable situations that feel forced.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? No. It’s not terrible, but not good either.

    LEGO® STAR WARS™: The Force Awakens

    LEGO® STAR WARS™: The Force Awakens

    11 hours playtime

    SteamGifts
    This, this is a much refreshing advancement in the lego series. Combat is much more interactive and compelling, vehicle missions feel much more balanced, and it is graphically impressive despite being building blocks. The greater downside is that it is of the newer trilogy which I don’t particularly care for. However, I do hope that they are able to implement these game features is future installment as it is incredibly a step in the right direction.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, really shows the future of LEGO games has potential.

    Magicka

    Magicka

    13 hours playtime

    Humorous yet intriguing game that allows you to combine various elements to create a wide array of spells. Unfortunately, the game is very blatantly a multiplayer game first and anyone trying to solo this will have a very rough go. So much so that I couldn’t push to beat all of the DLCs as some bosses would heal passively and I would not have the time to do enough damage while staying alive myself.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, but grab a friend. It’s a rough ride otherwise.

    Shantae: Risky's Revenge - Director's Cut

    Shantae: Risky's Revenge - Director's Cut

    7 hours playtime

    Neat 2D platformer that uses the power of hair to attack and dance to transform. In order to stop the pirate Risky, you must collect magical seals and find the secret of the lamp. Combat is pretty standard for these types of games while the transformation mechanic gives it just enough flavor to give it a taste of uniqueness. The biggest issue with the game is that despite being relatively small, it was very easy to become confused on where to go next as well as understanding the ability to traverse layers in order to progress.

    Lewd? A belly dancing half-genie and an octopus… nope, no lewd!
    Recommend? Yes, fun and byte sized.

    The Witness

    The Witness

    11 hours playtime

    Puzzle game that uses the puzzles themselves to teach you various mechanics. There is no text or verbal instructions. Simply traverse the land and most areas will introduce a new puzzle mechanic and lets you figure out the particular quirk and solution for these. It’s very rewarding and other than getting to a place with advanced techniques too soon, you are provided with everything you need to solve each puzzle you come across. There was only one puzzle mechanic, that despite my understanding it’s rules, I could not consistently solve. There are of course a multitude of secrets, secret puzzles, and beautiful landscapes. The lesser interesting bit of this is that it also holds a bunch of, non-essential, audio logs, and videos that really don’t do anything for it. Particularly because it causes you to be stuck in a single space with not much else to do but pace and wait for it to end.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes. Challenging and rewarding puzzle game.

May 2022

    Just Deserts

    Just Deserts

    11 hours playtime

    A VN that looked somewhat promising between the art and the fact that it had voice acting. Unfortunately, that’s not really the case. You’re kind of thrown into with little to know explanation. It tries to throw in a combat system, but it is so basic and lacks any real strategy that it’s a slog. Combat is also the only way you can earn money, so if you get a random encounter of enemies you can’t deal with, you can very quickly find yourself out of luck. To get better at combat you can train (which does next to nothing) and you can purchase very expensive gear which requires you to do combat. It’s a bit recursive. The voice acting is pretty mixed. Mostly good, but there is one individual who sounds pretty bad. The writing is nothing special if not a little cringey and straight up bad at times (“I like man things”). There is no redemption nor great finale aside from a little bit absurd boss fight.

    Lewd? Not really.
    Recommend? No

    LEGO® Star Wars™: The Complete Saga

    LEGO® Star Wars™: The Complete Saga

    11 hours playtime
    no achievements

    The game that really started the LEGO game franchise machine rolling. This combines the original trilogy with the prequels. Gameplay is pretty basic and standard for the LEGO series which basically means combat is pretty lacking and you’ll have some basic puzzles along the way. Not all levels are made equal, but they are pretty decent overall. The greatest thing is that it felt like all boss battles were somewhat unique and offered a good variety. That being said anything that wasn’t a gimmick puzzle had pretty repetitive combat. As one may guess, the biggest part of the game is collecting lego bits but I think giving the player a little more innate magnetism would have made this less of an issue. Especially since some of the missions as a solo player drained you of your bits (specifically vehicle missions).

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Solid LEGO game, particularly for starting it all. Great way to introduce the Star Wars series to a younger audience.

    Mitsurugi Kamui Hikae

    Mitsurugi Kamui Hikae

    3 hours playtime

    Simple hack and slash game that revolves around you fighting waves of enemies and bosses. There is a loose story that ties it together, but other than a few short cutscenes it is pretty negligible. The combat is fine and there are upgrades/new moves to buy, however it only felt like a select few were actually worth the purchase. Additionally, there are a few perks to stringing together long combos which includes damage dealt, pulling off a move that damages bleeding enemies, and currency gain. The game can get fairly difficult as some bosses have near impossible moves to dodge and will require quick and precise reactions.

    Lewd? Other than the girls in school skirt outfits fighting demons, no.
    Recommend? Kinda, there isn’t much to the game but for what it is the game is decent. There is a new game plus system that does extend the playability a bit.

    The Swapper

    The Swapper

    3 hours playtime

    Puzzle platformer that deals in creating clones that mimic your movement and swapping places with them. Most puzzles are pretty straightforward but really ramp up towards the end. So much so I’m not really sure I solved some of them the way that the developers meant for me to. There is a story told mostly in the background as you go and other than explaining the reason you are doing what you are doing… it’s a bit lacking particularly with the ending.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, a decent puzzle platformer though nothing incredibly unique.

    Yakuza 6: The Song of Life

    Yakuza 6: The Song of Life

    46 hours playtime

    What a refreshing game for the series. The past couple titles got a little bit tiresome of the overly complicated, twist on twist on twist, and filler story/gameplay. This game starts anew by giving you only one protagonist, does not rely on an overabundance of known characters, and introduces a whole new setting. All of the new characters seem fairly well written, and the antagonists give good motivation throughout. Overall, a satisfying story and ending, though they do beat around the bush on one topic for a little too long. The combat is pretty standard though there is an emphasis on Extreme Heat Mode which is where you will now activate most of your heat actions. This did feel like there was less of a variety in both moves and heat actions in general. Minigames are enjoyable as are the side quests. However, some of the side quests are difficult to continue or pace due to some location restrictions and lack of information.

    Lewd? No(?)
    Recommend? Very much so. A very satisfying entry in the Yakuza series.

    We Happy Few

    We Happy Few

    27 hours playtime

    What a mess and horrible experience. The game was often advertised as being Bioshock-like in it’s appearance, similarities of a dystopian society, and crazed junkies. Unfortunately, it really isn’t all that close and is barely a shell of the original premise it originally presented itself as. Joy, a pill that makes everything cheerier, presented as if it literally makes the difference from a rat to a pinata filled with candy. Other than the opening sequence it will never even come close to that. Instead, it is a cheap camouflage at best, but not meant to really be used.

    Instead of being a sort of dystopian horror, it is a cheap survival game, procedurally generated and empty. Buildings and benches often get put in awkward spots, AI often sit down onto nothing, and most loot is worthless. This is only worse when you waste lockpicks to just get a couple of rocks despite being supposedly unique chests. There is also a level and skill system, but you’re mostly going to want to focus skills that make the game less annoying such as not needing food/water, being able to sprint in public, etc. There are also side quests to help get these skill points, but they are terrible drab and either fetch quests or investigate a spot. There is almost no story or interest to them. Which leads me into the main story, it’s also awful. Instead of really focusing on the society they live in and instead goes on a weirdly personal tale for each protagonist. Oh yea, they also didn’t have enough content for one protag so they had to flesh it out by adding two others. More annoyingly as each one adds an annoying add-on to your experience and resets your skills back to 0.

    Lewd? Weirdly adult themes, but no.
    Recommend? No, I cannot stress enough how poor of an experience I had playing this and loathed trudging through it all.

    Save Room - Organization Puzzle

    Save Room - Organization Puzzle

    2 hours playtime

    What’s the best part of Resident Evil 4? Some may say shooting enemies, others may say the story, but we all know where the real enjoyment comes from. Item management. That’s right, sorting out your items in the grid-based attaché case Leon carries around and that is just what this game’s focus is. Puzzle style item management where you will need to rotate your items, load ammo, combine materials and use items so that you don’t drop or waste a single thing.

    The game in itself is weirdly therapeutic. Chill music and a focus on a simple goal. Unfortunately, the game is on the shorter end with about 30 puzzles. After everything is introduced, you’ll find that you will be resorting to the same strategy which can be a little repetitive. If the game threw in a few curveballs or moments where your strategy could make you fail would have been nice.

    Lewd? Just fit gun into slot, no lewd.
    Recommend? Yes, it is insanely cheap and enjoyable for what there is.
    EDIT: Just noticing there are two achievements missing. Fairly sure I completed this so maybe there is an update I missed. Will be done post-haste.

Final Fantasy II: 20th Anniversary Edition
PSP
Where FF1 set the generally setting and gameplay of the series as a JRPG, this started to develop the combat, art, and story. As an empire plagues the land with darkness and deceit, your group of 3 must search for your fourth lost member while facing the empire menace. There is a unique mechanic in this game where the more you use a weapon or spell, the more proficient and powerful it becomes. It also means there are no classes, so anything goes for equippables. This is fairly necessary for weapons in particular, but a double-edged sword when it comes to spells. Not only does the spell become stronger, but so does the cost. So, if you use it too much, you could end up having a spell take nearly all your mana. Another trick is that unless you use the spells in battle there’s no way to increase your spirt (white spell) or mana (black spell) which also makes it a little more complicated as it never felt like it kept up enough. Additionally, there are several combat mechanics that don’t feel explained if at all. Including how experience is gained and the perks or lack thereof for certain armor or weapons.

A major improvement from the previous game aside from the combat and story is that the world does a much better job of keeping you on track and not getting lost. Any time you veer off the right path you end up facing very high level enemies. It’s not the best system, but at least doesn’t leave you lost at sea for several hours as you try to figure out where to go next.

The biggest issue the game has is that you basically have mandatory 4th party member swaps to fill the gap for each section. This means trying to keep a consistent build across the 4th character or grinding them up is pretty worthless not to mention they take the gear they wear with them.

Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes, a much-improved experience and story over the original.

Final Fantasy III
PSP
Another entry that starts to bring in staples to, at least, the early series. Classes, more importantly, the ability to swap classes along with a plethora of them at that. This may not be the greatest implementation, but it was the beginning. We also get a much more engaging story and another change to combat. The perks of this re-release is that this is remade in 3D and even has a (somewhat useless) focus mechanic that helps you spot secrets.

Since classes are back, your much more restricted in equipment and no proficiency in weapons or spells. Though swapping classes does let you diversify your strategy and squad, there are penalties that seem a little harsh and limiting. For one, switching to a class that is essentially an upgraded variant does not net you any of the perks or experience from the previous job. Very few classes have this issue, but that means leveling up early classes could be wasted. Second, switching classes gives you an x amount of battles penalty to experience and damage. Additionally, swapping from a melee class to a spellcaster class gives you no mana as you previously had 0. This is super problematic and makes it so you should only swap those classes at a Inn or waste precious elixirs as there are no other items to gain mana. This becomes especially a problem for the few times you need to cast a spell in order to progress. Lastly, knowing what a class has before switching into it is impossible. In fact, the only way to know what the potential of a class is would be to either look it up or go to a person at the Inn after the switch has been made.

The story, this time around, goes back to a more classic Warriors of Light versus darkness and every step throughout the tale feels very magical and endearing. Additionally, this has the best progression yet as you literally can’t access places you shouldn’t be until you meet certain progression requirements. Other than one section, it’s very hard to get lost or not no where to go next. The only real downside to how this is setup is that saving can only be done outside of dungeons. This does help prevent you from softlocking yourself in bad situations. However, some dungeons are excruciatingly long, and you may not realize you are under level or ill prepared for a fight and then lose hours of progress. Another issue that relates to that is that some bosses require somewhat specific builds to make them even moderately doable.

Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Very much yes. Though it is not the best, this is probably the first entry in release order that I would recommend.

April 2022

    Guacamelee! Gold Edition

    Guacamelee! Gold Edition

    7 hours playtime

    Revisit
    Solid Metroidvania with Latino flair. Be the Luchador you are and face against supernatural foes as you save the damsel and stop the end of the world. Combat is decent with an emphasis on grapple moves. What makes this stand out more is the ability to freely shift between the living and dead dimension. Shifting will not only change the tone/music/environment but also the ability to combat certain foes and progress in ways that you may not in be able to in a specific dimension. There is co-op capability, though I’m not sure how that plays.

    The game features an incredible amount of reference and love towards other games both in the fore front such as collecting power ups via Chozo-like statues (Metroid) to plenty of background references with various posters, statues, and establishment names.

    Lewd? Nope.
    Recommend? Yes, solid metroidvania and a love letter to video games as a whole. It should be noted that this is not the definitive version despite being called “Gold Edition”.

    Middle-earth™: Shadow of Mordor™

    Middle-earth™: Shadow of Mordor™

    21 hours playtime

    Revisit / Steam Deck
    Assassin Creed-like game set in LOTR universe yet fairly separate from a lot of the protagonists of the movies/books. Story is alright and the unique warchief mechanic gives the game continued playability as new orcs replace the ones you have killed or converted. However, the land is pretty bland and there really is not much to do between missions or outside of messing with the War Chiefs. DLC is more of the same with some new monster variants and skills, but they are in their own separate instances. I would have loved if they incorporated it as an option to include in your main playthrough instead.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Generally, yes. It hasn’t aged particularly well, but it is a decent stealth/action game.

    Yooka-Laylee

    Yooka-Laylee

    11 hours playtime

    Very obviously inspired by Banjo and Kazooie, but lacking in all of the feeling and heart. Levels are left incomplete until you find collectibles and upgrade the world. An interesting progression system but ultimately the execution just wasn’t right. Levels just end up feeling too big and empty in the early game and by the time the world has been upgraded the pay off just isn’t enough. The music is alright, but the sound effects are not. A particular sound that your duo can make while moving sounds like a straight up squeaky toy and it is the worst. Boss battles are pretty inconsistent, some are decent while others seem to be a bit wonky.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Not really. It tries to capture everything that went well in Banjo and Kazooie and misses all marks.

    NARUTO: Ultimate Ninja STORM

    NARUTO: Ultimate Ninja STORM

    16 hours playtime

    Steam Deck
    Naruto fighting game that offers a semi open world story mode. Genuinely impressed with the performance and look of this game despite being older. The cell shaded cartoon/anime style keeps the game looking fresh while the frame rate seems to run silky smooth. The game follows the original Naruto show from the Genin period all the way to the end with the Sound Ninja Four and Sasuke leaving arc. However, they do miss some critical moments including the Land of Waves arc with Zabuza. In between the main story missions you can play to gain mission points which allows you to progress as well. Unfortunately, these missions are not only very repetitive but kind of unimaginative. You either get to do a tree climbing race (lane racer type game), tree jumping race (avoid obstacles to either get to a destination or catch up to a target in a limited time), hide and seek, and general battles with goals. A somewhat neat aspect is that between missions you get to explore the leaf village fairly freely. You can only climb buildings at certain points, but you can otherwise run, jump, throw yourself, destroy objects, and collect scrolls (currency 1 out of 2) as well as deliver and purchase items. As neat as this is and populated as the village is, there really isn’t much to actually do in the village. More annoyingly so, is you’ll have to accept missions at a save point, run to a person to initiate it and then possibly run to another destination to actually access the mission. It’s super round-a-bout and becomes cumbersome quickly.

    Outside of regular battles, there are 3 giant battles that have you facing against, well, giant adversaries which include QTE cutscenes that recreate epic moments from the show. I’m not sure if it is a problem solely for the Steam deck, but there were some performance issues with some stages and character moves. Chunin Exam final arena causes consistent slow down and Might Guy’s Ultimate move creates massive stuttering and slow down for example.

    Lewd? No Sexy Jutsu here.
    Recommend? Generally, yes. Though I think the later storm games massively improve on the story and fighting system, this game generally performs and looks great while providing decent gaming experience.

Elden Ring
PS5
Yet another Soulsborne game that doesn’t quite reinvent the wheel but does expand on pre-existing mechanics creating another well enjoyed experience. The biggest change being that it is now open world which creates both pros and cons. Pros being great sceneries, more options for exploration and progression, as well as more encounters/bosses. Cons is something that open world usually have which is repetitive bosses, useless/egregious crafting system, and empty/disappointing areas. Combat is pretty standard for the last few releases from FromSoft where you have your normal, heavy, and weapon arts among other things such as a plethora of magic/miracles. The interesting thing is that weapon arts can now be changed, with some limitations, to fit your needs. Bosses are generally great all around though it seems like every update is causing a new issue for one boss or another.

Lewd? As you are maidenless, no… no lewds.
Recommend? Yes. Though I don’t consider it to be the best Soulsborne it is still a very solid entry

Final Fantasy 20th Anniversary Edition
PSP
Despite being the Final Fantasy, it is far from the last. There was genuine surprise on how much this game introduced that would become staples in the later series. Basic job classes, airships, Bahamut, among other standard FF tropes. The biggest critique in this game is that it is really vague on where you are supposed to go and since you get the ship so early on you can very easily get lost at sea or go places you shouldn’t quite go yet. This is especially true in the 20th Anniversary edition as it adds additional content that could easily be interpreted as progression but is definitely out of your league for quite a while. Combat is pretty standard turn based RPG. Classes are pretty limited and do not have some of the key features or skills available that future installments implement. Basically only the mages can really cast magic and any melee class is a matter of stats and equipment. This is not terrible, just makes them feel less unique or requiring strategy. Spells are also incredibly limited in that you only have 3 spell slots per tier and you won’t know what spells you can get until you get to each shop. This means you have to risk spending the many gil on a spell that may not be used and thrown away for something you missed or find later.

Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Kinda. The game definitely inspired many JRPGs to come and set in place the rest of the series, but it is pretty much a standard JRPG and is far too vague in giving directions. Guide recommended.

March 2022

Got my Steam Deck that month. It’s pretty exciting at least for the novelty of it and have been testing all sorts of games on it when I have the time. Don’t feel safe enough to bring it out anywhere, but gaming from bed will do just fine.

    Broken Age

    Broken Age

    8 hours playtime

    I didn’t really think I would like this game but was pleasantly surprised with the tone and storytelling. At first glance, it may seem a little too E for Everyone but has quite a bit of darker tones/deeper meanings than the colorful art style may give off. Unlike most Point-and-Click adventures, you are playing two stories in tandem almost seeming entirely separate from each other. A cool and brave young maiden who wishes to defy her fate and a young boy wishing to break free from his confined safe life to something more dangerous and free.
    The game features some amazing voice talent, including Jack Black among others, that really brings the characters and story to life. Unfortunately, there are a few stop points that remove that liveliness either by weird bridging encounters or puzzles that can be a bit convoluted or obscure.
    Lewd? Not really.
    Recommend? Genuinely yes. Many of the issues with this game are pretty standard for the genre, yet it still stands out in both art style, storytelling, and voice acting.

    Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter

    Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter

    6 hours playtime

    1:1 to original SS, but now with slightly upgraded graphics from what appears to be on the same engine as Viscera Cleanup. Much easier ride through considering the first SS was my first of the series. I’m still not a huge fan, it has some decent moments that it then beats the dead horse that is beyond excessive.
    Lewd? Nope(?)
    Recommend? I guess? This didn’t feel like much of a leap from the original and maybe prefer the older graphics.

    Yakuza 5 Remastered

    Yakuza 5 Remastered

    48 hours playtime

    If you didn’t like the pacing of 3, you’ll hate the pacing of this game. Sure enough the game starts slow enough, but does begin to pick up by the end of the first character chapter. Then the second character comes in and puts on the hard brakes. The game feels nearly at a stand still to what seems like filler upon filler to the point that even by the end of the game I could only wonder if this chapter needed to exist at all. Thankfully, the third chapter picks the pace up and the fourth character really starts to redeem some of the hardship trying to play the game. Combat is pretty nice in the game, story could use some work, minigames are fine and side stories are alright as well though tainted by the time it takes to get to some of them.
    Lewd? Maybe (usually some sort of hostess club or dating)
    Recommend? Bitterly, yes. Easily my least favorite Yakuza, but it is a Yakuza so there are still enough moments to play through the game.

    Aperture Desk Job

    Aperture Desk Job

    32 minutes playtime
    no achievements

    Well, I finally got my Steam Deck and it only made sense to play the free hardware test game that is Aperture Desk Job. It was fairly enjoyable, and even though it was free I wish there was more of it. Even just a minigame to play for testing ridiculous contraptions, putting them together, etc.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, free, humorous, and leaves you wanting more.

Persona 5 Strikers
PS5
Sequel to P5 and not P5R, it has the Phantom Thieves return to face a new type of enemy with the same style but new gameplay. Instead of the turn based JRPG the game has been known for, instead it is now a Dynasty Warrior style hack and slash. It kind of works. There is a surprising number of actions one can take including basic slashes, gunplay, special attacks, persona abilities, and even character abilities/swapping. The best part of this is being able to switch to other characters mid battle and use their unique abilities/damage type. This also means the main protag can go down without failing the mission (It’s hard to believe I know).
With the change in gameplay came a change in level design and the enemies. Much more open space for various scenes, palaces are now called Jails and their wardens follow a much different theme. The music is still just as good, characters feel very much in line with P5 and their interactions are nothing short of great on their journey. Some of the enemy health and defense can get to be pretty excessive. Also, there were moments where the difficulty scaling felt pretty harsh despite being well equipped, but those moments are typically few and far in between.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes! Genuinely fun to play and as always great story with awesome voice acting.

Nioh
PS4
After trying the Strangers of Paradise demo I very quickly realized it was basically a slightly different Nioh and that I never actually finished Nioh… and so I did. As far as souls-like games came to be, Nioh easily sets itself apart from the rest. It’s complex and in-depth battle system gives those who commit to mastering incredibly rewarding. Though it can be daunting, many players can still get by learning some of the bare minimum stances and mechanics and not have too many issues. Just know that it very much embraces the difficulty and challenging aspects of boss battles and enemies. There is also a huge customization and equipment system that adds a little bit extra overwhelming on top of the already huge pile of overwhelmingness that you have to face. Honestly, it’s what I would change the most is the sheer amount of loot you have to sift through in order to figure out what works, what’s trash, and what may be saved for later.

Instead of an open world, you play missions which have well designed areas and generally a boss at the end. Boss battles are great challenging and require you to consider everything in your arsenal when facing. There is a bit of a grind for specific loot as well as getting various items such as healing in case you ever run into trouble.

Lewd? Suggestive.
Recommend? Yes, the game has challenging and engaging combat, an immersive story, and a great cast. The downsides being that the game can be a little complex and overwhelming with items and customization. I have yet to play the DLC, but plan to buy it at a later date.

Tiny Tina’s Wonderland
PS5
Spin off that expands on the Dragonkeep idea of a DnD (BnB in this case) side campaign that you partake. This is a little different though as not only are you playing with a group of all new characters, but you also actually create your own character. This includes some basic body variations, heads, hairs, colors, voice, etc. Where it really starts to matter is picking your class and background which will dictate your skills and stat bonuses. A wide variety of classes gives you a lot to choose from and a later ability to dual class makes each experience all the more unique. That being said the skill trees are a little lack luster as most skills you gain will mostly just be stat increases rather than modifying your abilities. Grenades also do not exist any longer but instead are replaced with spell slots which act a little differently in that they don’t take ammunition (cooldown) and cast more like a spell might.
The game is a little slow to pick up and it gave me the wrong impression on how the game was going to work. For example the overworld isn’t a big place to drive around. It’s a literal board where you will walk as a chibi form to your next location. In the overworld you can experience random encounters (small arena battles), explore dungeons (several sets of small arena battles), or continue on to the official mission areas which are surprisingly expansive. Starting, it takes a little bit to really get to go from mission to mission which makes the random battles seem like the meat of the game when it turns out it really isn’t.
At about the 2nd or 3rd mission area the game really starts to pick up both with story, level progression, dual classing, etc. and the fun really starts to begin. Everything after that is pretty standard Borderlands 3 gameplay. Unfortunately, it’s in the post-game where this game really starts to fall apart. Much like the previous title, there is a chaos system. For every level of chaos you add, the enemies hit harder, become more dense, and can drop more xp/loot among other modifiers. HOWEVER, unlike the last title you only have access to one chaos level off the bat and must complete chaos runs (several sets of small arena battle) for each incremental value. Meaning you can’t unlock them all, but would have to do a run on each chaos level to unlock them all. That is absolutely absurd and an actual slog to get through. This only gets worse when the DLC continues to add further chaos levels that you must rinse and repeat the same process. The DLC itself (so far) is also terrible as they are no better than the headhunter add-ons from BL2 while offering no new enemies, story, or real meat for far more money than it is worth.
Lewd? Innuendous
Recommend? Though the post-game/DLC is horrid. The game itself is actually a pretty fun ride with a competent story behind it.

Feb 2022
“Wherever you decide to be, that’s where you belong.” -Persona 5

    Super Star Path

    Super Star Path

    3 hours playtime

    Shoot’em up with puzzle like qualities. You go up a corridor of colored blocks and enemies. Shooting a block with same color blocks connecting them are destroyed in succession and the last block destroyed freezes blocks around them and giving them invulnerability. Your goal is to collect upgrades, gems, and defeat the boss of each world. The game plays alright enough, but I did find it far too easy to end up in a situation where you freeze your progression and are forced to die to the auto moving level.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Meh, it’s okay. Again, the fact that you can easily block off your progression with little to no foresight is annoying. That and the Boss Rush only gives you 1 health.

    Western Press

    Western Press

    3 hours playtime

    A very short and multiplayer focused western game where you must take part in duels. Instead of being quick and accurate with your gun, you must be quick and accurate with your… typing. Both opponents will be tasked with typing out a word (or memorizing and typing out a sequence of letters). The one who finishes first and with the least number of mistakes survives the duel. There is a sort of single player mode where you can face against a gauntlet of foes with increasing difficulties. This is a great way to unlock more characters (purely aesthetic) and gauge your difficulty level. Outside of that, you can face against bots if you don’t have anyone to type against, but their difficulty only goes so high, and some achievements are near impossible as the bots just are not good enough.
    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? It’s alright, it is incredibly short and runs the course pretty quickly. I think this game was finished within minutes and then it’s just grinding for achievements/cards. Discount or pass.

    Yakuza 4 Remastered

    Yakuza 4 Remastered

    21 hours playtime

    Fourth game in the Yakuza series and you know what that means? Four separate characters to play as with their own story paths. Each character not only has their own story, but play style and skill tree. A pretty exciting new addition as they have their own playstyle, move set, upgrades, and karaoke songs available. Not all characters are made equal as some of the stories are somewhat weaker than the others and some playstyles will just not work for everyone. Still, the pacing seemed consistent and had some pretty solid central plot points to cover. As well, it introduced my favorite character of the series, Akiyama.

    The minigames of this were generally improved, but sadly Hostess Club Manager is still in a bad state and Karaoke is pretty limited in it’s selections. It also seemed this game put ever egg in the “twist” basket as this game just likes selling them out like hotcakes. Though the pieces of the story moved generally well towards an end, the end itself felt loosely placed together and a little generic. Heat actions are not only unlockable, but upgradeable now by using them so many times. Unfortunately, it’s unclear which actions could be upgraded, and which cannot.

    Lewd? Massage Parlor can be suggestive, but also maintains a humorous aspect to it.
    Recommend? Yes, the events this game takes place around upon are a bit legendary as well as introducing several new characters that ended up taking top spots in my eyes.

Persona 5
86.5 hours
After playing through the Persona series, I have made it to the early version of the latest installment, Persona 5. I’ve pretty much been hounded to play this for quite some time and I have got to say… it is pretty great. As far as the new generation of Persona games go, this is easily the most well done mechanically. Reintroducing more damage elements such as Nuke, providing more dynamic boss battles to make up for any limited weaknesses, and a much improved first strike system. It should also be mentioned that this is the most artistically stylish of them all both in music and visuals. The new “castle” system of levels were far more dynamic and some had some great level designs, but unfortunately not as consistent as I would like. For instance, when you siege a castle you are forced to enter it a minimum of a few times to set your path and then another visit will be the actual process of stealing their “heart” using that path. The game does allow you to teleport between saves, but the coolest thing for me was in the first castle, creating a path where I could be pure stealth (no combat) and not use teleporters. For most castles that just is not possible.

Voice acting is of pretty high quality as usual and there are a few animated scenes which sort of cleanse the VN palate. The story is also just genuinely great with solid meaning behind the themes within. Each character is placed particularly well and even with some spoilers the game does provide decent progression and unexpected turns.
I will say that not all bosses were particularly memorable, in fact the main antagonist really did not seem to have been all that fleshed out as they maybe could have been. Their second in command was more interesting than them. Also, some of the main cast could be a little much for me at times. Although they are young and rebellious, there were multiple times where the most responsible of them seemed to just lack any sense of secrecy and sense of a situation. Those moments are fairly limited, but they are there. Additionally, the confidant/tarot system is decent but there were many skills that just seemed for the most part useless and some of the characters don’t have all that interesting of a side story to progress. What’s worse is that some of those worst ones are the hardest to complete leaving little to no reward for the extra effort.

Best Girl(s): Tae Takemi, Sae Nijima, Sadayo Kawakami
Best Boy(s): Yusuke Kitagawa
Lewd? Suggestive and romance options available, but nothing outright lewd. So far, only straight relationships.
Recommend? Though it is not my favorite in the series, it is by far one of the best Persona games out there. It kills the story, the themes, and the gameplay creating a trifecta of enjoyment.

Pokémon Legends Arceus
179 hours
After many years, many generations of Pokémon, we get a spin off that wishes to push the envelope in a different direction than it really has before. A semi-open world Pokémon game that focuses on collecting Pokémon over the traditional battle system. Taking place many years in the past, your character is pretty much isekai’d to this “foreign” land where Pokémon run around fairly free and untamed. You are quickly tasked with creating the first ever Pokédex and it not as easy as you may know. In previous titles, you merely had to catch a Pokémon once to get their entry. In this, you have several tasks per Pokémon before getting a base completion level all the way up to a perfect completion level for those completionists out there. Also unlike previously, you don’t have to battle a mon and catch it, but instead can sneak or stun, and throw a ball to get your chance, but this puts you in much more danger from their attacks. You can still battle with Pokémon in the traditional way, but it is also a bit different. Moves can now be switched out in the menu and there is a new style system that uses up extra power points to either do extra damage but slow your movement or do less damage and increase chances to have your turn come sooner. To put even more emphasis on change of pace in battles, certain boss battles require only you vs a powerful mon as you must dodge their attacks and throw items at it to defeat it.

This game is a much-needed step in a different direction, but it is far from perfect or great. Generally poor graphics aside, the general settings are kind of bland for a Pokémon game. It really feels like some sort of generic world instead of these key vibrant locations we’ve seen in past games. Additionally, seeing Pokémon roam freely is nice, but there really is not any dynamic interactions that really make any encounter unique. It’s all just basic walking, running, eating, and sleeping. The Pokédex is generally enjoyable and a little relaxing, but I felt the tasks set could be a bit much. There would be tasks where you have to use a 5 PP move 70 times and on top of that use it in a specific style which further accelerates through your available moves before resting to restore them. I really believe that the system is there but needs to be wildly balanced especially with the amount of redundancy across multiple Pokémon. The story can also be a bit of a drag as it is not only slow but kind of uninteresting.

Lewd? Nope
Recommend? For the most part, yes. This game, I feel, is more of a test to see if this is what people really want which is why I think they did not put nearly as much polish in it as they could have. I would like to see another side game like this where it has a similar focus, but the graphics and dynamic scenery and interactions of a Pokémon Snap game with more refined gameplay mechanics of Arceus.

Jan 2022
I See Humans But No Humanity. Everybody Is Somebody But No One Wants To Be Themselves. - LiS: BtS

There’s so much in transition while I try to slither into a new job and new life. This was the last month where I was able to focus on my Steam library. I both have excess time and yet no time at all. In the mean time, here is the January report.

Top Games of the Month
Yakuza 3 Remastered
BlazBlue: Centralfiction
Life is Strange: Before the Storm
Human Resource Machine

    BlazBlue Centralfiction

    BlazBlue Centralfiction

    13 hours playtime

    Another great entry in the Blazblue series but has one glaring issue that could affect fans of the series.
    Let’s get down to business. Blazblue is a great 2D fighting game. The fighting mechanics are solid and smooth, a large roster of characters, and a lot of different modes and supplements. There is a story mode that feels far more weighted on the VN side of things with very limited battle segments. There are, of course, still alternative gag routes (though far more limited than usual) and side stories including running gags from previous titles. The arcade mode got a little more interesting in that there are 3 separate arcade timelines. This means you can pick a character for each mode and get three separate endings for the same character along with different character events. They also reincluded a library of information to refresh your memory on various terms, characters, etc. though some entries were not as expansive as I would like.

    There were 2 general issues I had with this game. The first being that the sprites looked slightly more pixelated and less smooth from previous entries. The second, and by far the biggest, is that it was never (and will never, in this release of the game) be dubbed. Now, I don’t have problems with subtitles and different languages, but I have grown to associate each character with the stellar dubbed voice work from the past few entries. Despite, in the grand scheme, being somewhat minor it was such a huge disappointment to me to the point that I had to put the game down for a while as I could not adjust to the change right away.

    Lewd? Suggestive as always, but nothing explicit.
    Recommend? Yes, despite the lack of dubbed voices and maybe rougher sprites, the game is still fun to play, and it was great to see the finale of the story arc.

    Call of Duty: WWII

    Call of Duty: WWII

    6 hours playtime

    Having an itch to check out COD Zombies again, I decided to give a newer title a try. Though there are no major grievances, there are also no major appraises either. This did really feel like “just another COD” game.

    Going back to WWII we get a much more cinematic game that gives the feel of, well, a WWII movie. You start off with the traditional beach of Normandy mission and go across France taking on various battles and objectives. The game is fairly traditional FPS with some team cooldowns that let you grab ammo and health from key teammates. There are also some vehicle missions which are generally just okay as well as some stealth and spy sections that do give a nice change of pace throughout the game even though the stealth mechanics feel kind of shoddy.

    The new(er) cinematic approach to this game does not feel right. It really feels like I’m watching a movie than playing a game. Although I do enjoy the crazy improved graphics, the heavy emphasis on cinematics takes too much from the game while the style of narrative was not to my appeal. The stealth sections feel like they have wonky cones of detection and either you are seen through an obstacle, or you could walk right past somebody, shoot someone, and the other person would not have noticed. Most missions were generally generic. I will give credit that the missions in the forest were actually kind of nice but wasted with limitations and unenjoyable bunker segments. The game also kind of comes to an abrupt end and is telling of the style of narrative they went for.

    Lewd? Nope.
    Recommend? It had moments, but generally was not a very memorable experience.

    Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Mirror of Fate HD

    Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Mirror of Fate HD

    6 hours playtime

    A side story that not only completely reboots the rest of the Castlevania series to fit the Lord of Shadows new direction, but at the same time takes a return to the classic Castlevania 2D gameplay. Unfortunately, the attempt to bridge the gap leaves all attempts lacking and unenjoyable.

    The story is spread across several well-known characters reimagined for their scenario. Each scenario is short and gives limited abilities. The gameplay is clunky but not terrible. You do eventually get abilities to assist you along the way, but the difference between upgrades and required abilities is not stated clearly. This leads to the fact that most of the areas are poorly designed that are either too basic or needlessly long and tedious. Boss Battles are decent for the most part. The worst part is the story. It’s one thing to remake the story into something new. It’s another to totally bastardize it. It’s only worse when they introduce several plot points and background characters that don’t ever resolve or are ever explained throughout the game.

    Lewd? Aside from a suggestive succubus and alluring temptations, nothing lewd.
    Recommend? No, though this does expand on some ideas brought exclusively in LoS2 it really doesn’t add anything at all and should be skipped.

    Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2

    Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2

    15 hours playtime

    A strong beginning only for it to slowly wither into mediocrity. Taking place almost immediately after the time skip at the end of the first game, we find Gabriel now transformed into the creature of the night in the modern world. The game keeps a lot of the hack and slash combat and improves upon it. The game does also include sneaking sections at first which were kinda cool, but the necessity of it falls very quickly and becomes much more of an annoyance as your power grows the need to hide from the same enemies should decrease. Story is okay for the most part. It has some questionable moments, but nothing spectacular. What the game does best is combat. Combat with regular enemies, and especially boss battles are easily the peak of this game. The issues rise outside of combat. You are bestowed powers and mana bars per power type. These are used to traverse the lands; however, your mana does not regenerate outside of battle, and you can be locked out of areas without some sort of way to refill (either by battle or very scarce generators). Travelling between areas, especially with the weird concept of travelling form the modern era back to the cognitive past castle of Dracula to be awkward and loosely fitting.

    All in all, the combat is enjoyable, but the general journey becomes so very weary and tiresome.

    Lewd? Perhaps Carmilla, but not much past that.
    Recommend? I’m a bit mixed as the game looks great and when it plays well it feels great, but there just ends up being so much wrong with everything around it. For those uninvested in the Lords of Shadows games, mild pass.

    Human Resource Machine

    Human Resource Machine

    8 hours playtime

    Programming, or more accurately, machine assembly language-based game that requires your ability to learn and apply basic concepts the game teaches you to take the inbox, manipulate, and outbox the desired results without error. I was impressed with the complexity the game had to offer in puzzles. Even more impressive is that the game knows when you use faulty logic despite being able to solve that particular instance. I.e., If you happen to solve the specific problem given, but only works for a limited number of samples, the game knows and will have you retry with samples that your solution cannot be applied to. This forces accurate solutions regardless of how simple or overly complex you make them.
    There is the usual charm from this developer included a background story that doesn’t particularly matter but is nice to have.
    Lewd? Nope, work hard for your hard-earned promotions to the upper floors.
    Recommend? Yes, absolutely enjoyed wracking my brain trying to figure out a working solution and going crazy on why it doesn’t work. (It really is like programming).

    Invisible, Inc.

    Invisible, Inc.

    4 hours playtime

    A surprisingly short turn-based game focused on stealth instead of combat. Control and upgrade multiple agents against an ever-increasing alert timer and formidable enemies. Use gadgets, elements of surprise, and hacking to give you the advantage over difficult and limited odds. You are always on a timer both in location and the over map as you have limited days and each destination costs you x days but offers specific rewards depending on the location you choose. What the game makes up for shortness is replay ability with various difficulties, modes, and new game plus options. There is a story and unless there is some secret I missed, it kind of just happens with no satisfying resolution.
    Lewd? Nope.
    Recommend? Yes, for a cheap price preferably due to length.

    Just Cause

    Just Cause

    6 hours playtime
    no achievements

    It’s GTA if it was set in South America with 80’s action hero Antonio Bandera as lead character, undercover CIA agent set to overthrow a dictatorship. Though it does introduce new mechanics that separate it from you GTA styled open world gameplay (car surfing and grapple hooking to vehicles) they are laughably bad and rarely work the way you wish. Trying to reel into a car often leads you to land far too early and grappling to a plan either gets you shot or misses entirely. Jumping from car to car is entirely inaccurate.

    The physics in general are wonky at best and multiple situations have occurred where vehicles got caught undermine rendering my mobility of a required vehicle impossible. Gunplay is fine nothing special and most missions are decent. However, the final charge for the last mission is an absolute slog. Even though the ending sequence was insane and over the top it was completely drowned by the frustration of what came before.

    Lewd? Bikini venue, but nothing intense.
    Recommend? It has some charm, but I’d bet that later games vastly improve both physics and gameplay. I’d say pass on this.

    Shadow Warrior

    Shadow Warrior

    11 hours playtime

    A sort of reboot of the “Boomer Shooter” games that takes place many years before the events of the original. Still serving as an FPS game it updates it with new weapons and a more fleshed out sword/skill system. This not only includes multiple sword skills but sort of ki skills to attack and defend. Gameplay is fine enough if not a little clunky at times. I found a lot of the skills can be kind of useless or mediocre and the explanation of each can also be unclear.

    There is some this game does well (gameplay in general), but there is so much more that it does unwell. Biggest is performance issues, especially in menu. Major stuttering and lagging, going from menu to menu. On top of that there are just way too many tabs and different menus. Several for every skill, upgrade, etc. I also cannot care for the story. On one hand it can be a decent carefree wild ride, on the other hand it can take itself very seriously on a turn with flimsy plot devices and questionable motives. There is also some issue with direction on tasks, very few, but when they did happen, I found myself stuck for a while. Bosses also feel very repeated and unimaginative while weapons in these scenarios feel limited and weak.

    Lewd? Innuendos, but nothing for Wang’s wang.
    Recommend? Honestly, I would pass on this. It’s a bit of a poor reboot.

    Starlight Drifter

    Starlight Drifter

    6 hours playtime

    A VN that wants to pretend it is much more than that. You command a grand one-of-a-kind spaceship as you explore the galaxy and gather more crew. Your choices determine who joins your crew, what opportunities you have, and the end result of each expedition you take. There are also mechanics such as weapons and hull integrity. Despite the game putting a lot of emphasis about those to the player… they are rarely used with limited interactions and importance. There are some okay missions, mostly generic or based on other forms of sci-fi media. More than a few feel wasted, as if there were other options secretly available to complete, but never fully implemented. Essentially incomplete missions only able to fail or ignore. Over arching story, if I could call it that, is pretty non-existent with no satisfying resolution. You can of course romance your various crew with possibilities of absolutely failing all future chances. These will not only unlock lewd scenes, but potentially new quests.

    Lewd? Crew dating, limited and relatively tame.
    Recommend? No, fairly bland and puts on a fake coat of paint only to lie the bland content it has in store.

    Stealth Inc 2

    Stealth Inc 2

    7 hours playtime

    Puzzle platformer with dark humor. You are a resistant test subject whose sole purpose is to fail various puzzle experiments set by a man in the shadows. As you explore the building further and enter each puzzle area, you find the chance to free your fellow clones and master new gadgets. Decent overall, but nothing that makes it stand out.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Decent, but nothing extraordinary. Get for a discount.

    Yakuza 3 Remastered

    Yakuza 3 Remastered

    19 hours playtime

    Coming off Kiwami 2, this felt like whiplash. I was not prepared to go to an older format with limited controls, fluidity, and gameplay. There’s a lot to chew here so prepare for a big meal.

    The story picks up after 2 where Kiryu retreats to Okinawa where he runs an orphanage with Haruka. Unfortunately, Kiryu cannot seem to keep his head low enough as he is brough back into the fray. The biggest issue with the game is pacing. The game starts slow, which is fine as it sets up his simple life has owner of an orphanage and love for the children there. The story heats up once he leaves the orphanage. The problem is every time he returns to the orphanage, all of the major and time sensitive issues seem to just go away and your back to slice of life Kiryu where everything just slows back down. That’s right before you leave again, and it picks back up at full throttle. Not to mention the game literally sits you down for almost an hour straight just to spit plot at you. (You literally sit in a room and just go through the text prompts to get more background on all of the important plot points). At the end it does even out and there are a few great characters and moments throughout the game despite this lack of smooth pacing.

    The combat, well, it’s just not going to be any of the Kiwami combat that we may have grown used to. It’s much more simple and a little more rough. A lot of the basics are there, but you’ll always be missing the new flavors. Towards the end the gap between the Kiwami games does fill out a little bit and becomes less noticeable and/or just got used to it.

    Sadly, the greatest tragedy of all… the minigames are just so much worse. This might actually have been the first Yakuza game where I skipped nearly all of the minigames because they were generally uninteresting. I may be grieving this more than I should, but that’s because the Cabaret Club Management minigame was the greatest disappointment of all. Instead of managing multiple girls and tables, you manage 1 girl across a few separate time segments. Basically dress her up to a specific stat, send her out, follow her out and see how she is doing and eavesdrop what the crowd wants. Next segment hits, adjust to crowd preferences, rinse and repeat. The worst part of this is that there are so many hidden adjustments inside each customization not only including type of looks, but also the colors you add to them. This unnecessarily makes this minigame more of a time sink just to learn what each color and customization changes for even semi-optimal gameplay.

    Lewd? We do get Hawaiian Shirt Kiryu and buff shirtless men, but no lewd.
    Recommend? Despite being slightly weaker entry due to being so dated, by the end of the game it really comes around. I’d still recommend it, but maybe a part of the remaster bundle.

    Hacknet

    Hacknet

    14 hours playtime

    Gifted to me by a wonderful person in the community, I got to pick back up my power gloves and become Hackerman again. I loved having to return to this game as it always makes me wish I made different choices in school and further pursued a career in Ethical Hacking. Obviously, the job wouldn’t be nearly as exciting as this game, but the actual methods of hacking are pretty dang accurate.

    Immediately the DLC was a little hard to activate, I actually ended up lost in a separate add-on until I finally looked it up. Once I finally managed to start it up, it was more of the same which is not a bad thing. You do get a few more software tools to take on new types of obstacles, as well as improved versions of tools in the main game. There is a little subplot to the game and there is a decent amount of content in here. Best of all, no DLC achievements so you never feel forced to get this expansion (even though you really should).
    Lewd? Nope. Plenty of bits, but no ti-.
    Recommend? Yes! Absolutely great addition for the base game.

    Her Story

    Her Story

    3 hours playtime

    This game was praised for unique storytelling and narrative. Undoubtedly the game is unique in some of these aspects, but I’m not sure I can say it is overly enthralling. You are a user with access to a police database with a collection of clips of a woman being interviewed on her life and her missing husband. Use keywords to search for a set number of clips. Play and use these clips to piece together the story. Once you found all the right clips, you will be able to close out the tale.

    Undoubtedly, there was not a game such as this. That told a narrative in this way. Unfortunately, I feel it could use some revision. The keyword search system is fine, but the sorting of clips and the clips themselves can be fairly useless. For example, there were several clips assigned with the word “Yes” and they were all a couple seconds long of her replying, “Yes.” Since there is no audio of the interviewer, these clips are pretty much useless fluff in the database.

    Lewd? Some explicit talk, but nothing terrible.
    Recommend? Though it’s not a typical game, it certainly is an experience most should try.

    Life is Strange: Before the Storm

    Life is Strange: Before the Storm

    12 hours playtime

    Why do feeling exist and why does this game try it’s very hardest to pull them (unwillingly) out of me. A prequel to the smash it Life is Strange, this tells the tale of Chloe’s transformation as we know her in 1 and the story behind her and Rachel Amber. Though you learn of Rachel through background knowledge and some experience from Chloe in 1, it is nice to finally get some more experience with her character and her story in this universe. If there’s anything this game does well, it’s the ability to recreate what it’s like to be a rebellious the teenager. The angst, pain, sorrow, and day to day moments of someone who feels to be an outcast and going through trauma of several varieties. So strong of capturing emotions I could feel all of mine bubbling to the surface and waiting to be released.

    As those who have played the first LiS game, you know a core mechanic was time manipulation. However, that wouldn’t really work in Chloe’s case, instead her mechanic is in certain conversations to initiate a sort of speech battle where you have to perfectly insult and challenge the other person in order to win the argument. It’s not as exciting as time powers, but it does fit the character well. My only greater grief is that there is a romance option that is determined by far too early of a choice. SO much so that I think if you go for the romance option it both does not fit your character very well nor does it fit a good transition for a relationship. Other than that, the story is very solid.
    Lewd? Nope?
    Recommend? Yes, despite knowing how everything will end by the time LiS begins, it was an emotional journey (so much so that it’s almost a negative point for me).

    Spyro™ Reignited Trilogy

    Spyro™ Reignited Trilogy

    26 hours playtime

    A great remake of a classic trilogy that I had grown up playing. It was interesting to see how the mechanics and game have aged and how differently I view them now. The first of the trilogy being exceptionally solid with very few issues with some level designs but next to non-existent bosses. My biggest issue with the remake is the redesign of some (if not most) of the dragons. They just start to become too unique and even have a hipster barista dragon (it may just be my age, but it did bother me more than it probably should have). Spyro 2 has much more memorable bosses but starts to lack in more of the level design. Spyro 3 has even more memorable bosses, but levels become far too big and start to incorporate loading to other areas and other playable characters. This takes away from the enjoyable bite sized levels of the first game.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Despite some minor grievances it is an exceptional remaster and great for both new and old players of the series.

    Time Gentlemen, Please!

    Time Gentlemen, Please!

    3 hours playtime
    no achievements

    Point-and-Click adventure with cheap graphics and cheap jokes. Frankly, I couldn’t care less for the story or the adventure. There were some decent moments, but it could not keep my interest.

    Lewd? Innuendo, but no.
    Recommend? Not really. It felt dated visually and in writing.

    Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell

    Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell

    11 hours playtime
    no achievements

    I was surprised to see the port handled fairly well on PC despite my previous experience on the Xbox. If you aren’t aware this is one of the great games of the stealth variety. You are a super-agent with only one objective, do what it takes to ensure the safety of the USA. This primarily involves stealth, espionage, and the likes of covert operations. Though stealth games existed before this, this one revolutionized it. Variable movement speeds, light detection, advanced sound detection, etc. Though not perfect it certainly was leagues above what was available during it’s time. Missions are generally well designed and creates intrigue.

    Lewd? The groans when he heals is questionable, but no lewds.
    Recommend? Yes, a classic in terms of stealth based games and handles exceptionally with mouse and keyboard.

Umbrella Chronicles
In some ways a remake of the classic Resident Evil 0, 1, and 3 video games turned rail shooter. The stories are slightly reimagined to fit those format but it should be viewed as an interesting way to, again, enjoy the series in a new light rather than any potential changes to continuity. The great thing about this is that aside from the chapters that focus on retelling what already existed in previous games, but bonus chapters that elaborate on behind the scenes happenings that fit the cannon and give us more to characters we may not have gotten enough time with.
Any issues this game has is due to the system and hardware of the time. The light gun does not like to keep consistent calibration nor accurate readings when it came to certain actions. The game itself also does force poor camera angles at times and really unforgiving quick time events.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes, though due to limitations of availability hope there is a well done port/remaster of the game.

Shining Pearl
In an era of remakes we eventually got to 4th gen Pokemon games. There were a lot of complaints, but honestly, the remake did what just a remake needs to do. Take a game with aged graphics and overhaul it completely. They did just that and even threw in some quality of life changes involving HMs. I also personally liked the sort of chibi graphics of characters in the overworld, though it does belittle the very terrorist-like antagonists. I only wish the included Platinum in this as it is the greater version of 4th gen.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes. It doesn’t reinvent the system nor make any huge changes or fixes, but it does bring some quality of life on a new set of graphics.

Dec 2021
Top Games of the Month
Yakuza Kiwami 2
Danganronpa 2
Five Nights at Freddy’s: Security Breach

I was hoping to do a year wrap up, but I let this get so far way from me, I lost all motivation. Since I am still catching up, this will be a short introduction.

    Bridge Constructor Medieval

    Bridge Constructor Medieval

    3 hours playtime

    Physics builder that gives various scenarios to build bridges to either get your soldiers across, protect them from assault, or lure the enemy into a trap. Use support beams and learn to balance/reduce tension from key points on your bridge while watching the cost of materials. Most levels are decently designed though some of the challenges can be unforgiving.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Meh. All in all, it’s a pretty average game and what you might expect of the genre. Nothing special or standing out.

    Cuphead

    Cuphead

    5 hours playtime

    Despite taking much of the fame from a personal favorite, Hollow Knight, I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of this game. After making a deal with the Devil, you set on a quest to collect the souls with those that made a contract with the Devil himself. Each one is a straight boss battle with unique fights and quirks. Though the game can be challenging, learning the patterns and watching for tells can give you all the information you need to clear the game with little trouble. Only a few fights felt particularly troublesome. There is also a shop to buy and equip new shooter types and additional benefits. There are some optional run-and-gun areas that have you platform to a certain goal. Though they are not terrible, they are certainly the weakest aspect of this game. Other than the challenging boss fights, the greatest appeal of this game is the hand drawn and old-fashioned look that brings back the look of 1920’s American cartoons.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Yes, the game is challenging without being unfairly difficult.

    Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair

    Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair

    37 hours playtime

    It’s hard to talk about this game without spoiling too much. Only know that you are a new protagonist in a new class on a vacation and there most definitely will not be despair. The game features what the first is known for with investigations, class trials, unique style, VN story, and minigames thrown in. Other than one specific trial, everything this game does is great. The story leaves clues as to where it’s going, but it’s not likely you’ll figure it out before you get there. It’s also just as enjoyably dark as the first.

    Lewd? Suggestive, nothing explicit.
    Best Girl(s): Peko, Chiaki
    Best Boy(s): Fuyuhiko
    Recommend? Very much yes. By far my favorite Danganronpa game so far.

    Five Nights at Freddy's: Security Breach

    Five Nights at Freddy's: Security Breach

    22 hours playtime

    A nice change of pace from the more traditional FNAF games, we are now given a speaking character that must traverse and survive the Freddy Pizzaplex until it reopens. This time, Freddy is not your enemy, but a mobile mecha for you to hide in and a friend. The other animatronics and Security guard are still on site for you and there is more to this place than it seems.
    To start off, the sheer gravity of this game is amazing. I mean the Pizzaplex feels like a real place and exploring it is wondorous. All sorts of references, easter eggs, and just great aesthetics are presented to you with every step. Not to mention this place is HUGE. The glam 80’s aesthetic for both the environment and the animatronics fit all too well.
    Unfortunately, the game has several issues. The biggest issue being performance. Opening a door will require the next area to load which will mean you end up staring into a black abyss until it loads lest you walk forward and either found by an enemy or trapped inside an object. Some interactions seem to have slight visual bugs as well as enemy AI issues at times. These are not necessarily problematic issues as they could be fixed at some point.
    Other issues this game has is pacing, jump scares, and general story beats. Though there are some pretty great segments, there are occasional long periods where very little is happening, and the scares are concentrated for more in smaller moments than throughout the game. Additionally, there is a villain introduced that really isn’t seen enough throughout the game and in certain moments can be missed entirely. A glaring issue as they were teased quite a bit and referenced, but hardly create an impact or issue. This flows right into the story issues where there are multiple plot points and ideas brought up, but never resolved or completely explained. Perhaps this is something they are waiting to do in DLC, but seems like a poor decision. Lastly, at the time, there is a decision point to continue the game post escape to explore the pizza plex for collectibles/secrets. However, you are not given any chance to save after this point. This is an interesting idea, but turns out to simply be frustrating as there is a lot to find in your first playthrough and there are too many chances for glitchy deaths let alone regular ones. Thankfully, it seems the did patch in a single save point later on.

    We do get some really great segments, even those that are similar to classic style gameplay if not a little watered down. Honestly, I wish there was more of that or even expanded/higher difficulty segments for those. Hopefully they include some sort of classic mode.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Despite not being great in performance, the experience overall was fantastic with great characters. Maybe wait for a few more patches.
    *There is currently one achievement that is bugged.

    GRAV

    GRAV

    32 minutes playtime
    no achievements

    An early access game that has no signs of ever making an official release. It’s an open world survival craft game with mmo like combat. Travel the planets, pick up items and build. It’s really just a piece of hay in a large, saturated haystack.

    Lewd? Nope?
    Recommend? No, not only have we not seen a release date, but I also really can’t recommend any game with those tags.

    Grotto

    Grotto

    5 hours playtime

    Story driven game with choose your adventure qualities and interpretive meanings. You are a star gazer that finds constellations and uses those to respond to the local anthropomorphic characters as you try to assist their issues and make world changing choices. The constellations you find have general descriptions and you must use those along with the type of person you are talking to and context to reply. Unfortunately, not everything is so clear and so you may not deliver the message you intended. The game also suffers from not ending when it probably should. There are several arcs within the game and each time an arc ends, the game feels like it is also ending. This can be disappointing as this probably serves better as a short game as it really overstays it’s welcome. The game also does not explain the mechanics very well. I had assumed that once a constellation is grayed out, it can no longer be used again. However, you only need recharge it. This leads to much more difficulty and annoying decisions.

    Lewd? Talks of love houses, but not much past that.
    Recommend? It’s interesting, but by the time I got anywhere near the end I was a little tired of it.

    Ridge Racer™ Unbounded

    Ridge Racer™ Unbounded

    8 hours playtime

    Racing game that focuses on destruction. Earn points via drifting, airtime, among other accolades to fill your bar. Once full activate your boost that not only gives you speed burst but destructive capabilities. This not only lets you crash other cars (which will respawn), but also secret pathways by bursting through walls and glass. This provides an explosive and exciting experience for the most part. In the background, there is a vague story that you are part of a resistance to take over the various areas, using your races and destruction to lay claim. It really is just noise and doesn’t do much for the experience.
    Part of the issue with the game is the execution of the destruction mechanic. The best way to build your bar is claiming accolades. For example, drifting for x meters grants you drifting 1, continue to drift long enough and you will get drift 2 and so on. Since you don’t save bar past the first fill, you have to be strategic on trying to claim those. Destroying walls for secret passages also grants you full meter. This means having a meter is used to get you more meter. In a multiplayer setting I can only imagine this keeps those ahead winning and little chance for anyone to catch up. As well, the game just gets a little stale and requires very close requirements to unlock the next race.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? It is more average at best. Honestly, I would say no and just skip this racer.

    Shadow Warrior Classic Redux

    Shadow Warrior Classic Redux

    12 hours playtime

    Essentially Duke Nukem, but instead of American Action Hero stereotypes, it is Asian Action Hero stereotypes. There are several tools to use that… I never really used. Things like smoke bombs, invisibility, caltrops, etc. I did find myself lost or unsure what to do next more than once. The game could do better on direction. It also outlasts it’s welcome with all of the expansion and occasional subpar levels.

    Lewd? Suggestive themes and you can find anime girls bathing, but nothing explicit.
    Recommend? It was overall an enjoyable experience, so yes.

    The Tower Of Elements

    The Tower Of Elements

    2 hours playtime

    A mobile game of sorts where you must tap 1 of 3 colors on each side of the tower to destroy the climbing enemies in order. The game centers around trying to survive the longest and getting the maximum score. You are rewarded with points to spend on visual upgrades and characters.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Not really, it is a decent time killer, but it’s not particularly enjoyable.

    Two Point Hospital

    Two Point Hospital

    40 hours playtime

    Though I knew that this game was a sort of building tycoon game, I was still disappointed to see that the game wasn’t as intimate with each illness as the trailers had made me believe. To preface, the game revolves around you building hospitals to cure crazy illnesses with just as insane/humorous treatment methods. Hire and train your staff, build/decorate rooms, and make sure you keep the income coming. Though the illnesses are unique you will rarely witness the patients walking with them as you will mostly be watching for percentages and wait times while trying to create a more efficient environment. This need for such a top-down perspective ruins some of the interest and comical side of things. Furthermore, the game itself gets pretty stale after the first few hospitals and future challenges only seem to make the game a bit of a slog. Outside of that, it seems to be a pretty standard building tycoon game. There are nice filters to see exactly what your hospital needs/could focus on.

    Lewd? Other than the pixelated nudists, no.
    Recommend? Not really, but it really wasn’t my thing.

    Yakuza Kiwami 2

    Yakuza Kiwami 2

    53 hours playtime

    One of the last remade Yakuza games and it goes out with a bang. Kiryu once again returns to Kamurocho and faces a new threat. It’s definitely one of the smoother Yakuza’s while offering brutal action and heat moves. We once again receive a great story with equally wacky and emotional moments. Of course, the greater reasons is the side stories and minigames. Unfortunately, the days of circuit racing are gone, but getting a construction job and the ever-great hostess jobs certainly due well fill that void. If you were a fan of the previous Kiwami games, don’t miss this one.

    Lewd? A few scenes and minigames introduce semi lewd scenarios, but nothing explicit.
    Recommend? Very much so. Great action and fantastic stories.

    Resident Evil 2

    Resident Evil 2

    50 hours playtime

    Beaten -> Completed Wrapped up a few more runs and challenges. Still a great game.

    Resident Evil 3

    Resident Evil 3

    31 hours playtime

    Beaten -> Completed Wrapped up a few more runs and challenges. Though the game is far shorter and more importantly a lack of Nemesis hunting you more, it is still an enjoyable game.

Nov 2021

    Darksiders III

    Darksiders III

    16 hours playtime

    After quite a bit of hiatus, we finally get the third installment to the Darksiders franchise and welcome a new Horse Rider protagonist. Fury, she’s as badass as she is battle hungry. In hopes to take over as lead horsemen she is tasked with taking down the Seven Deadly Sins. Dialogue and story are decent, but do not particularly bring anything exciting or amazing to the series.
    This game does once again reinvent the gameplay of the series now adopting a heavily inspired souls like experience. Enemies die and give you souls, you have limited healing items per life, dying loses all of your unspent souls, and dodging is imperative. Fury, unlike her brothers, does not focus on raw strength (War) or magic (Death), but rather elemental attack damage and counter strikes. This is what makes dodging so important to hit these critical counter strikes. The game does get rid of the mmo weapon loot system that was brought in on 2 and instead you handle different weapons depending on the element you use. Each weapon not only brings in a new moveset, abilities, and statistics, but they are used to further traverse the overworld. Being able to seamlessly swap between these weapons makes for a fluid and enjoyable combat experience. Boss Battles are the best part of this game, despite one or two maybe poorly designed and/or annoying fights.
    Overall, an enjoyable experience lead by a badass protagonist. The only major falters is that it donned an overly popular genre, some minorly annoying mechanics, and maybe some iffy plot points.

    Lewd? Not quite, but Queen Fury is killing it.

    Recommend? Yes, great combat and boss battles secure this as a great installment to the series.

    Deponia Doomsday

    Deponia Doomsday

    7 hours playtime

    Point and Click adventure that appears to be a prequel to a larger series. In a dystopian future you must try to ascend to the utopia floating above. Unfortunately, a mysterious force seems to try and stop you at every return and every solution you solve, you somehow create several more problems. The animations are pretty nice, but the game itself is alright and tends to follow the usual format of most point and click adventures with weird solutions to most problems. I found the main character pretty unlikable. Kind of a mess up that expects too much for how little he does along with how many times he screws up.

    Lewd? Suggestive themes, but nothing more.

    Recommend? Nice animations, okay humor and story. I’d more give this a solid maybe. It may benefit those who have played the rest of the series.

    Electronic Super Joy

    Electronic Super Joy

    2 hours playtime

    Platformer with a funky vibe. This game was pretty weird, but decent. Some of the mechanics for each world were hit and miss. The music is probably the game’s strongest point, but it also requires tastes that reflect 90’s/2000’s club music with huge beats and weird moans displaced throughout.

    Lewd? The music
    Recommend? I’d give this another maybe, to kind of rating. The game itself is alright and nothing special and the music can be an acquired taste.

    Killing Time

    Killing Time

    3 hours playtime
    no achievements

    Lewdie JRPG with corruption and machine translation text. The game doesn’t hold anything particularly unique out of all of the other games that exist exactly like this.

    Lewd? Most definitely.
    Recommend? Not really. Lacking story, generic combat, and repeating scenes.

    Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee

    Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee

    9 hours playtime
    no achievements

    A classic puzzle platformer. Your goal is to escape your job as it plans to turn you and your species into their next food product. Platform and voice are your tools to escape your pursuers and free your people. The dark scenery and twisted creature designs drew me in, but that wasn’t enough to keep my interest. In fact, a major mechanic absolutely turned me off to this entirely. That mechanic is the speech power. Not only does it feel out of place, but the voice of your character is far higher and more annoying than I would like. The game also seems to suffer just from being in an older game in that it’s incredibly challenging and requires frame perfect jumps and timing.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Not really, it really just doesn’t feel as if it aged well. Maybe the New N’ Tasty remake fairs better.

    Sonic Adventure DX

    Sonic Adventure DX

    9 hours playtime

    The first sonic game to embrace the 3D world and has me convinced that it is for worst. Despite being a remaster the game is still a bit of a mess and cannot compensate for poor controls and clunky gameplay. In the already well-established Sonic universe, you can play as several different characters in their own campaigns, slowly combining all of their stories to create a greater plot and unlocking the final chapter after their completion. Each character has their own abilities and style of play. This means you can enjoy playing some campaigns while absolutely abhorring others (Looking at you Big the Cat). The impact of each character is also severely underwhelming while you could probably cut some characters out entirely. The most jarring thing is that when you return to a scene as another character, the dialogue completely changes. It’s a weird design choice as these characters are supposed to intertwine and complete the narrative. The game however does hold a pretty decent soundtrack for the most part.
    Playthroughs from Best to worst: Tails, Knuckles, Sonic, Gamma, Amy, and Big the Cat at the lowest possible bottom there could possibly be.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? No, I’m absolutely convinced the only positive reviews of this game are from nostalgia. It really just was not for me.

    Sonic Adventure™ 2

    Sonic Adventure™ 2

    7 hours playtime

    As the sequel and quite the talked about game, I found myself once again… disappointed. Visually the game looks much better, however it still handles poorly and fails to deliver on gameplay. We once again get to play multiple characters, this time playing three hero characters and three evil characters. As cool of a concept this is, the evil characters mimic the gameplay and mechanics of their hero counterpart. Even worse is that they changed some characters for the worst such as giving Tails a clunky mecha. Not only was this a terrible transition, but I was able to get to areas I was not supposed to reach without finding an upgrade to be able to proceed, soft locking myself.
    Best to worst campaigns: Shadow, Sonic, Rogue, Knuckles, Eggman, and Tails.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? No, this game was a frustrating mess and an omen to all future Sonic 3D games.

    Sonic Generations

    Sonic Generations

    4 hours playtime

    The past meets the present as Sonic finds himself in a void, must rescue his friends, and even meets himself from a generation past. The game essentially serves as a collection of notable sonic levels for you to play through with a thin layer of story to drive the progression. Each world does a few things. It allows you to play the base level of that world in the modern 3D fashion, and a 2D level that is semi equivalent (again all based on past levels of the series). Apart from the levels themselves, there are challenge points that have you go through the base level with certain requirements (find items, speedrun, etc.) Another addition is a skill system. Buying and equipping skills can create an easier time or more unique experiences.
    The game performs alright for the most part. 2D levels being pretty solid, while 3D being somewhat inconsistent. There were several levels I noticed performance and mechanical issues. The boss battles are also all pretty subpar if not just annoying. Of course, the music is great and features either a remaster of classic songs or remixes of them.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? It’s pretty decent and probably one of the better 3D games. However, it’s alright at best and didn’t particularly grab my interest.

    SteamWorld Heist

    SteamWorld Heist

    12 hours playtime

    Turn-based tactics that requires both placement and the ability to aim your shots. Some sort of steam punk post-apocalyptic world where you control captain of a small ship and slowly grow your crew as you take on bounties and galaxy wide missions. Each crew member you pick up has their own class and thus their own stats and skills that can benefit you and your team. The gameplay is incredibly fleshed out and offers interesting mechanics including the ability to bounce bullets.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Very much yes. Easily my favorite game of the month.

    Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince

    Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince

    7 hours playtime

    The 4th entry in the series and not much has changed. If you enjoyed the previous games and gameplay, you’ll likely enjoy this. Level design is fine. However, the skill system feels much underpowered. Most of the skills didn’t even seem all that useful or worth buying other than getting potentially decent later skills.

    Lewd? Nope
    Recommend? Kind of, particularly for those who enjoyed the previous games and want more.

    Age of Survival

    Age of Survival

    2 hours playtime
    no achievements

    A truly sad state of a game that has barely reached an alpha state in development. Sounds don’t work correctly, there are little to no actions, it is easy to fall through the map and there is no easy way to reset or revert your save.
    Recommend? Nope, burn it, destroy it, whatever you have to do to rid yourself of this waste of space.

    Five Nights at Freddy's 3

    Five Nights at Freddy's 3

    5 hours playtime
    no achievements

    Beaten -> Complete Finished Nightmare mode (Night 6) which ends up being the final night. Not terribly hard, but if you fail to get in the rhythm of the night you’ll be in trouble.

    Galaxy Girls

    Galaxy Girls

    4 hours playtime

    Yet another mediocre game by Dharker Studios. You pilot a space vessel with a crew waking up from cryo sleep that may not necessarily opted in to be a part of this crew. You must gain their trust to avoid mutual destruction as there is no turning back. This is a pretty standard VN where you make choices and can romance several characters. Each character has several endings along with solo endings in case you are not in the romance way. Simply the story isn’t interesting enough and any spice they add to this sci fi adventure is low balled in and hardly used.

    Lewd? Yes, several events and endings can lead to intimate moments with your crew.
    Recommend? No, frankly this game was just so uninteresting I began to skim the dialogue rather than read it thoroughly.

    The Escapists

    The Escapists

    31 minutes playtime

    I just couldn’t get into this game. It is way to free form and so little direction. The goal of the game is to continue your prison routines while figuring a way to get out. There is a tutorial, but it gives you the idea that there will be objectives listed for you throughout.

October 2021 Part 2 - Non-Steam
The fear of blood tends to create a fear of the flesh - Silent Hill
Hewie! …Good boy! - Haunting Ground

Here are the final games for the Spooktober event I hosted. I also ended up doing a Night 6 marathon of all the FNAF games, but I’ve already reviewed those, so I am not reincluding that. As well, including some alternate game cover art in the links below. Mostly just putting my brand image over some of the major titles I played, but I really enjoyed putting the mask over the dog. Anyways, hope everyone enjoyed their October and I’ll slowly be catching up to the new year!
Haunting Ground
Dino Crisis
Bonuse Bayonetta 3 Excitement

Dino Crisis
PS1
(Revisit) What if Resident Evil and Jurassic Park had a baby? Well, it would probably be this, Dino Crisis. A survival horror game that has heroine Regina and her team search an island facility for a high-value target. Things are not what they seem on this island and I’m pretty sure it’s snarling and hissing in the darkness.
That’s right, dinosaurs baby, and unlike zombies… these are not so easy to put down. You’ll have to not only run but get crafty because these lizard-like creatures are fast and deadly. If you are resourceful, you can combine items to make a plethora of products to help you deal with these including healing, status heal, bullets, and tranquilizers to assist your survival.
It’s not all action as you will be faced with many interesting puzzles. These puzzles are tough, varied, and will require your ability to keep track of information (remember those note sections in the game manuals? Yeah, necessary for this). Even when they use the same style of puzzle, the method for solving it differ amongst areas (files/notes will assist in your deductions).
Like RE3, you’ll be put into various situations that will cause you to make choices. These not only set up your immediate situation and possible rewards, but will slowly build up to what ending you get. Endings and continued playthroughs unlock various modes and costumes.
Though I absolutely love this game (as I love a many classic survival horror), this game does have a few flaws. The more immediate ones that come to mind are some of the major battles may not be so obvious in how to deal with them along with the timing to actually deal with them.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes, for those who enjoy the classic Resident Evil and survival horror games.

Eternal Darkness
Gamecube
This was a highly recommended game and I’ll admit it wasn’t entirely to my fancy. This was in part because I did not realize I could save at my leisure and thus lost a lot of progress on my first death. This game starts in the present where a young woman learns about a death in the family and begins to investigate at their house. As she finds mysterious papers you take control of various people who have come in contact with important and dangerous artifacts. The surprising part of this game is that you are only the lead character for a few seconds between the big chapters of the other heroes of the past. There isn’t much combat in the game, it more revolves around casting spells. This is done by unlocking a rune/spell recipe (usually one per chapter) and combining them to create spells. There is a bit of a rock paper scissor system in the form of rgb magic. So, it’s not only important what magic to cast, but the color variation as well. Probably the biggest appeal is that there are technically 3 routes you start the game with which decide what type of bosses and enemies do for damage as well as the ending.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Though there were some cool concepts, the game just didn’t appeal to me, not to mention some parts of the games are complete slogs.

Fatal Frame: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse
Wii
Finally! Finally, I got to play this game. Fatal Frame 4 was never brought to the west, but thanks to the fan translation, it is now playable. Much like FF3, we control multiple protagonists across each chapter with each their own skills and obscura weapons. If you aren’t already aware, unlike traditional survival horror games, you do not use guns to defend yourself but a supernatural camera that captures ghosts. The amount of damage you do depends on the power level you charge along with various skills and film types. For the most part the game plays like the rest of the series, though the added motion controls does work with this title as aiming becomes more dynamic and quick time events/dodges are easy to pull off.
The story of the game isn’t far off of the past formulas either. We once again find ourselves undercovering a mystery dealing with taboo rituals and dark practices. The main protagonists revisit an island that suffered a huge tragedy. Unfortunately, their memories are slowly fading and they must go their to recover what happened to them and how they can escape the curse of the Luna Sedata Syndrome, a unique disease related to this island.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes! Another great entry in the FF series. The aesthetic is creepy, ambience is chilling, and the story is engaging. My only hope is that we get an official western release at some point as to avoid the hassle of the fan translation patch.

Happy’s Humble Burger Barn
PC
Before the sequel, Happy’s Humble Burger Farm, came to steam there was HBBB. A low budget game that is reminiscent of the PS1 era. Go to your grand job as a employee at the Burger Barn including serving food, taking order, cleaning up, and dealing with horrors. Enjoy your shift.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? It’s a bit mixed. The game could be optimized as it began to lose performance quickly on segments, particularly with streaming.

Haunting Grounds
PS2
It had been several years since I got to play this game and only until now was I able to start a new game and finish. I’m glad I did. This survival horror game pits you as a young maiden who finds herself in a dangerous situation while waking up in a mysterious castle. The ambience is creepy, but not as creepy as her pursuers who chase her relentlessly throughout the different areas. This isn’t like Resident Evil where you are armed to the teeth. No, you can only hide, use limited alchemic objects, or trust in the goodest of boys (a dog) named Hewie. The dog doesn’t only serve as a defense or offense but helps complete puzzles and gain items with your command. Of course, the best part of all of this is that there is a command to praise Hewie and even pet him from time to time. Aside from the lack of combat, this game plays pretty similarly to Clock Tower where your damage is mostly mental and getting to a high enough damage state puts your character in panic causing them to run sporadically and more likely to stumble.
The setting is creepy, the music well done especially for the pursuer themes, the boss battles are generally great, and overall enjoyable experience.
Lewd? Some of the death scenes are questionable as there are strong implications that the pursuers have vulgar and terrible reasons to catch you. This only adds to the terror and fear of the game. No visuals of the act though.
Recommend? Yes! Another great game in the survival horror genre, especially since you can get the “Dog Lover” rank when beating the game.

Persona 3: Dancing in the Moonlight
PS Vita
As a series that has become more notable for the music and style in the game than much of anything else, it is no surprise that they began to release rhythm games for each installment. This is pretty standard as far as games of this genre go. You do get to customize each character as well as have characters join in on a song during a “Fever” moment. The greater downsides is that the timing for button presses does not seem as exact as I perceived. As well, even if you hit every note, it does not mean you will build your combo. Only “Great” or “Perfect” hits will actually build that, so getting perfect scores is much harder than usual. DLC is a pain to acquire, but that is more of a Vita problem than anything I am sure.
Lewd? Nope, just dance dance dance.
Recommend? Generally yes, great music, customization, and visuals. Probably get it on another platform if able, though I do prefer it more mobile.

Persona 4 Golden
PS Vita
Continuing the more stylized route of the series ever since 3, the gameplay continues to be pretty similar. Exploiting an enemies weakness allows for follow up attacks, exploiting the weakness for each enemy in time allows for an ambush attack, and only the main character gets to control different personas that they gain by contacting or fusing demons they have faced. You play as a young man who is moving in with his uncle and cousin for a year and attending school. However, mysterious murders seems to be happen and somehow seem to be related to a superstition called, “The Midnight Channel”. Make friends, defeat demons, and uncover the mystery.
Though I liked the theme of Persona 3 more, undoubtedly the story of P4 is far better structured and more relatable characters. The dungeons also seem more improved and individualized than the previous tower. Even though there is a lot of similar assets used, the use of wildly different aesthetics and theme songs per dungeon create a wildly different experience for each.
The greatest downside to the latest incarnations is that bosses cannot ever be affected by status effects. This means if a boss does not contain a weakness of the elements the fight becomes an absolute slog and fairly similar to any other boss without weakness. Had they included that some bosses could be affected by certain status effects, it would better give use of many abilities that fall short in these battles or more interesting experiences to each fight.
Lewd? Suggestive talk and of course romance routes, but no lewd.
Recommend? Yes, of the new Persona series this is so far my favorite. The music is stellar and the gameplay is enjoyable with a great story and characters.

Resident Evil: Code Veronica X
PS5/PS4
(Revisit) I always forget how much I love Code Veronica until I play it again in which I fall in love (all over again). This takes place after 2 and 3 where Claire goes off on her own to continue searching for her brother and any more information on Umbrella. Unfortunately, this leads to her capture on an island facility and, naturally, things continue to get worse. Compared to some of the earlier titles the graphics on this game, even with the more polygon state, look great. The colors are well captured, movement is fairly smooth, and the sound quality is wonderful. Not to much has changed from the original RE titles, so be prepared for fixed camera angles, tank controls, and item management. Bosses can be mixed in quality, but regardless they are all interesting even if frustrating at times. Story is wonderful, characters are well done, even if some people don’t like some of their voces coughStevecough, and this very much carries the Resident Evil name.
Lewd? Dat butt, dat other butt (lenny), but no no lewd.
Recommended? Definitely a contender for one of my favorite Resident Evil titles and recommend it to anyone who can handle the classic mechanics. Now if only we can see a well-adapted remake of this.

Silent Hill 1
PS1
(Revisit) It’s amazing how well this game holds up after all this time. Despite the older graphics and gameplay, the game is still able to give a feeling of dread while maintaining an enjoyable experience.
Waking up from your car seemingly crashed on the side of the road, you realize you are in a fog covered town. You see your daughter walking away and you pursue only to find the town seems to slowly warp between the fog and a rusty grotesque “other side”. Your goal is to find your daughter, survive, and even find the secrets this town of Silent Hill has hidden beneath the broken streets and rusted gates.
Unllike Resident Evil, this game does not limit your inventory nor does it yield on giving you a surplus of supplies. It’s not what have or the lack thereof that makes the horror here real, but rather the experiences you face. After all “The fear of blood tends to create a fear for the flesh”.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes, truly a classic.

Until Dawn
PS5/PS4
A story driven game unlike any other. You’ll take control of a group of friends throughout their stay at a lodge sometime after an unfortunate accident there. What was meant to be a night of fun and relaxation turns into something more sinister. Your choices will matter as choosing the wrong options could lead to your character or another’s death sometimes down the line. You only have clues from totems found throughout and a vague idea of how each character’s personality to help make these decisions, some of which are quick time. See who you can get to survive until the end (if any at all) and see the ending you get.
The game keeps a consistent amount of fear and feeling, that some of the later games by this developer fail to do, while keeping a nice build up. However, this game does fail in a couple of ways, namely there are sections you need to keep still. This uses the motion control functionality of the controller. However, despite saying this, the field representing you can move on its own, so you might need to move your controller to keep it within the specified area. It can be very misleading.
Lewd? Nope
Recommend? Yes, despite having been spoiled some of the twists, I was still able to enjoy this game in the end.