RikkiUW’s profile

Despite attempting to work on my backlog, it was still growing faster than it was decreasing so I’m now only entering for SG games I really want, and only keeping bundle games I genuinely want to play. And I’m determined not to let my VR backlog grow much, despite seeing so many good games.

As you can see from my favourites list (which is in no particular order) my taste is varied. I tend to like games with story. I also like games that are unique in some way. I tend to play more short/medium games than long games as I get bored easily (which explains my large ‘unfinished’ list :P). I will stick with a game if it’s good enough though. I’ve never been into massively multiplayer games. Actually I play single player almost exclusively, but I’m usually willing to try multiplayer/co-op for games I like.

My intention is to create a post for every 3-4 games beaten, including a review on steam. I find other people’s reviews helpful, so why not help other people.


October '19 Play Log I

A few theme-fitting games this month for the first time in a while. I’m currently playing Nevermind in VR which fits the theme too. Hope everyone’s enjoying the fall while it lasts. I’m really not looking forward to winter (not that I ever do).


Rusty Lake Paradise

Rusty Lake Paradise

3/10
3 hours playtime

Apparently the Rusty Lake series is quite popular, but I don’t understand why. Personally I found it stupid. The puzzles never felt satisfying and the story fell flat.

Pros:

  • Some puzzles with OK difficulty
  • Easy to get all achievements, and you can reset individual chapters if you miss some in that chapter

Cons:

  • What passes for a story isn’t creepy or suspenseful so much as vaguely nonsensical and somewhat stupid
  • Most puzzles are either too easy or too hard
  • Several puzzles rely simply on trial and error, or memory

Verdict: 3/10

Got this in a Humble Bundle not long ago. Shouldn’t have kept it. Played it for the monthly theme, not that it fits (despite the tag). I really don’t understand why these games are well liked.


Dead Secret

Dead Secret

7/10
3 hours playtime

Experienced on Oculus Rift

First things first, I only recommend this if you’ll be playing it in VR. The atmosphere, while great in VR, doesn’t translate well to non-VR gameplay.
This game is a bit of a mixed bag. It has some flaws, but it does other things very well. There is room for improvement but overall it’s very good and quite scary. It relies mostly on atmosphere, but there are some surprises that’ll make you jump. I wouldn’t describe these as jumpscares though, as they’re not an enemy jumping out from behind a door yelling “BOOO!” type scares, but are more subtle. They wouldn’t make you jump in a non-VR game, but in VR the effect is more intense. For a while I chickened out and played out of VR, but ended up going back in. I don’t consider myself a horror fan, but I have played and enjoyed some games in the genre like Outlast and Rise of Insanity (VR).

Pros:

  • Mirrors actually have reflections in them, complete with accurately reflecting head movement, which is rare even out of VR
  • You actually have a body! Most (all?) first person VR games I play the character has no body when you look down, which I find immersion-breaking. In this game you actually have a body. It’s not done perfectly - I was sitting whereas the character was standing, and there were times when my view started clipping into the character, but it’s still an improvement over the standard invisible body.
  • You find documents, letters, newspaper clippings, etc, as you go that help you figure out what’s going on, give you background, and hint at what to do next.
  • Every so often your character stops to review what she knows, which is a good way of making sure you’re keeping up with what’s going on (which you wouldn’t if you ignore documents found).

Cons:

  • As previously mentioned, there were a few times when my POV was a bit inside of the character. Though this may not have been an issue if I were standing.
  • Poor voice acting. There are only a few voice-acted sections that serve to provide background and motivation for why your character is there, but the voice acting is very flat and lacks feeling.
  • At the very end of the game you can’t open your notes again. This is a particular problem given what you’re supposed to do.
  • After figuring everything out when you really stop and think about the story it starts to unravel a bit, in a ‘why would that person do that though?’ kind of way. Not a big deal since most people play this for the experience, just don’t think too deeply about it.
  • No rotation controls, it must be played in 360 degrees. In my small room sitting on a swivel chair this resulted in frequent wire tangles.
  • Touch controls seem to be designed for Vive. Not a big deal, but they could be improved for Oculus.
  • At the start of the game you can choose normal vs comfort mode, but it’s not clear what the difference is (teleportation based movement apparently) and you can’t change it later.

Verdict: 7/10

Recent SG win that fits the monthly theme. Quite good in VR, but I don’t think it was worth the dev’s time to create a non-VR version. Had some nice features like working mirrors and a body you can see why you look down. Quite scary too, I nearly chickened out. There was one part where I was underground and it emerged into what looked like the bottom of a well, so I looked up and saw a masked figure looking back at me. Really made me jump.


SUPERHOT

SUPERHOT

9/10
4 hours playtime

Very unique and definitely worth playing. Yes the story is short, but if that’s all you play then you’re missing a massive chunk of the game, so ignore the negative reviews that complain about the length.
I’ve beaten the campaign and played a few challenges, but haven’t tried endless mode. I’ll try and remember to update this when I eventually get to it.

Pros:

  • Unique concept that is very interesting, making it as much puzzle as shooter
  • Unique art style that works very well
  • The story is strange and enjoyable, and even extends into the main menu which is neat
  • Many challenges and an endless mode to play through once you’ve finished the story so there should be plenty of playtime
  • You can cut bullets with the Katana, though I find this difficult for some reason. I think I just haven’t gotten the hang of it though.
  • The story isn’t relevant to the gameplay. This could be perceived as a con, but it means if you abandon it for a while you won’t be very confused and tempted to restart when you come back.

Cons:

  • Being able to see the number of shots left in a gun would be very helpful, but I understand why they didn’t in order to keep the interface clean
  • The story mission is very hard. There are so many enemies that, while I managed to find a good pattern for the first half of the last phase, by the time I got to the second half I wasn’t consistent enough to find a pattern. I ended up beating it mostly by luck.

Verdict: 9/10

This one was from my unfinished list. I got it and played most of the way through it nearly 2 years ago, but got stuck on the last level. The story was quite short which resulted in a lot of negative reviews, but they all seem to be missing the fact that there is a huge number of challenges and an endless mode. HLTB time is 20 hours to complete so I really don’t think it’s overpriced by that much. I only finished the story for now, but I intend to come back to it and do more challenges and achievements later.


Prey

Prey

7.5/10
33 hours playtime

Absolutely phenomenal game. Much better than the vast majority of FPS games these days as it has both good combat and a genuinely amazing story. I’m really hoping there will be a sequel to this, and if there is I’ll be first in line to buy it. The biggest weakness is the number of issues - both crashes and glitches - which is unacceptable this long after release. If it wasn’t for that, I’d probably give it a 9/10.

One piece of advice: don’t look a lot into this and learn a lot about the game. If it looks good to you, just buy it. For one thing I somewhat over-hyped myself for it. For another, I suspect this is the sort of game where you’d really benefit enjoyment-wise from going in blind.

Pros:

  • Good weapon variety, and enemies have genuine strengths and weaknesses which are noticeable and will influence which weapon you use
  • I didn’t use stealth much, but from what I can tell the system is quite good
  • Has an actual explanation for upgrading and getting new powers/abilities
  • NPCs have noticeable reactions and feeling when you’re conversing with them
  • NPCs have backgrounds and between talking to them, the occasional side mission for them, and finding audio logs/emails/notes/etc, they have genuine personalities that you get to know
  • Excellent voice acting
  • Wide variety of side missions that can influence the main mission and how you play

Cons:

  • Long load times for transitions between areas, especially considering it was on an SSD
  • Crashes. There was one specific area that crashed when I tried it. Took four tries to get past it.
  • Multiple glitches, including ones that impacted side missions. Getting past one involved playing with the save files to reset an area. Some of these may be ‘you did something to make this side mission/etc impossible’, but I don’t think so. If that was the case it needs to be more obvious why it wasn’t possible.
  • As much as I like the Gloo gun, it could have been better. Specifically, under some circumstances it only formed a tiny gloo ball. I suspect that was due to me being too close to what I was shooting at, not sure though. Maybe if I’d upgraded the handling more it would have been better, but I’m not convinced.

Verdict: 7.5/10

This one was on my list for last month but I didn’t quite get through it. It’s an excellent game, but I couldn’t give it an excellent rating due to the number of bugs/glitches/crashes I came across. Personally I don’t think this is acceptable on release. It’s definitely not acceptable several years down the line. That said, I’d love to see a sequel. I also intend to come back for a typhoon playthrough at some point.


Recent Acquisitions

September '19 Play Log II

Just one more for September unfortunately. I’m currently playing Prey and was hoping to beat it y the end of September it but I’m taking my time and trying to complete all side quests so that didn’t happen.


Contrast

Contrast

9/10
4 hours playtime

Absolutely loved this game. The unique concept works very well, and I thoroughly enjoyed it despite normally not liking (or being good at) platformers. I’d love to see a sequel to this game. I did have a number of criticisms, but they were all relatively minor and I enjoyed the game in spite of them. Highly recommend.

Pros:

  • The entering and leaving shadows to solve puzzles mechanic works very well
  • The collectable luminaries (some of which are needed to solve puzzles) are sometimes easily accessible, and sometimes more challenging. This means you can just go after the easy ones if you want, or you can try for the (slightly) more difficult ones
  • The story-related collectables are never hidden too well, so as long as you explore you’ll likely find them all
  • The puzzles start off easy and get harder at a comfortable rate
  • The 50’s Vaudville art style looks brilliant and suits the atmosphere perfectly
  • The soundtrack is amazing

Cons:

  • The controls outside of shadows could have been better, it sometimes felt a bit too unpredictable where you’d jump
  • For the most part the shadow controls worked well, but the third chapter could have used more polish. There were some areas I consistently was booted out of the shadow world for no obvious reason.
  • I didn’t come across any luminaries that I couldn’t figure out how to get to fairly easily. They could have done with adding some more challenging ones.
  • The third chapter came on much stronger in terms of story than the others, so it felt a bit out of balance. The first two you’re wondering what’s going on with the shadows, why can you enter them, why can no one see you, etc, but the story or collectables never address it. Then in chapter three suddenly it’s all about that. I think those sorts of questions should have been at least hinted at more gradually. If it had been extended over a fourth chapter it likely would have been ideal.
  • The ending leaves you with a lot of questions. Granted this is intentional, but it’s not a case of it being open to interpretation. Even if you really consider everything in the game and think about it you’re still going to be left with some questions, or at least uncertainty. To a certain extent this is a good thing, but personally I would have preferred it to be a tiny bit clearer (unless it was intended for a sequel of course).

Verdict: 9/10

I absolutely loved this game. The ending could have been better; specifically it would have benefited from being stretched out over an additional chapter. If anyone is on the fence about getting/playing it I highly recommend it though.


Recent Acquisitions


Goals

Looks like I’ll only be able to achieve 2 of my 3 goals for the year :(.
70% beaten SG wins ratio: I’m at 66% now. If I can continue to beat 2 per month I should be able to achieve this without issue.
Max 30 40 Wishlist Unplayed games: This one was a complete disaster. I’m currently at 52, including Prey which I’ve yet to beat. The issue is that I’m growing this list at least as fast as I can shrink it, sometimes faster. Perhaps I’ve spread my self too thin goal wise.
Much fewer (55) abandoned games: Once I’ve beaten Prey I’ll be down to 55, but once I pick up another game I’ll be back up to 56. So I’m really close here. If I’m really good I may even be able to get to 50. That’ll be a stretch though considering fewer and fewer of the remaining games have a lower number of hours left.

September '19 Play Log I

So much for fall being less busy. The end of the year will also be the end of my current work contract. I’ve been head-hunted by recruiters which is good, but it means interviews and calls and whatnot are beginning. And at the same time, work is getting really busy due to due dates coming up that we can’t possibly meet. And a big boss will be in town next week so the pressure will be on. And working weekends have been mentioned (I believe my contract limits me to 48 hours a week so I should have an excuse to limit it which is nice). Also, I’m trying to get some home improvement stuff done before winter so there’ll be quotes and whatnot for that. So basically everything is happening at once. I’m already stressed out and it’s only just beginning :S. Anyway, on to the game related stuff.


Gods Will Be Watching

Gods Will Be Watching

3/10
2 hours playtime

Extremely difficult with a huge element of RNG. Basically it’s an RNG with fancy graphics. Unless you don’t mind repeating the same chapter over and over again and find most puzzle games too easy, I’d recommend avoiding this one.

Pros:

  • Some aspects of the puzzles are clever, like having to focus on body language

Cons:

  • RNG means that you can fail even on the more optimal routes, and have to restart long chapters, which means it gets repetitive
  • Can’t save mid-chapter
  • Extremely difficult
  • The story (what I saw of it anyway) is fairly forgettable
  • Achievements don’t unlock until the end of the chapter, which means you have to beat it
  • Many achievements are mutually exclusive, so getting them all will mean replaying a lot

Verdict: 3/10

I had abandoned this one ages ago, and should have remembered why. Way too much RNG and repetition. Now the 1/35 is going to hurt my achievement score :(.


Rollers of the Realm

Rollers of the Realm

7/10
6 hours playtime

A cute pinball/RPG mashup that works fairly well. It has a cute story that’s rather enjoyable. Pinball isn’t generally my thing since I have bad reflexes, but I quite enjoyed this game.

Pros:

  • Cute story
  • Well voice acted
  • The mechanics work fairly well

Cons:

  • Achievement hunters be warned: the achievements are quite difficult, and there are some grindy ones
  • I found myself never using the specials since I was saving mana for resurrecting my preferred characters

Verdict: 7/10

SG win on my ABC list. Also matches the PAGYWOSG theme. This is another one with very difficult achievements, and some are grindy. The arcade mode is way too difficult to get achievements on, but I really liked the campaign mode. It’s an unusual mashup of pinball and RPG, but it works very well. The characters are likeable and the story is cute. Not the kind of thing I’d usually go for (I have awful reflexes so I’m rubbish at pinball), but I’m glad I won it.


Little Nightmares

Little Nightmares

9/10
5 hours playtime

A thoroughly enjoyable atmospheric adventure game with a rather strange theme. Highly recommend.
There is a story but it’s not told with words. Unlike most wordless/textless stories though, it also lacks cutscenes. It’s one of those stories that’s never entirely clear, though on purpose. If you pay attention to what’s going on as you go through the game it’s possible to interpret. And if you can’t, there are explanations online.

Pros:

  • I loved the unique art style
  • I found the main character Six to be very endearing for some reason. This made a significant difference for me, especially later in the game.
  • The sounds and background music are very well done, especially WRT enemies.
  • The game is challenging but not frustrating, and has secrets to explore

Cons:

  • There were one or two times where I had enemies appear grab me through walls

Verdict: 9/10

Absolutely adorable game picked for PoP from my wishlist unplayed list. I’m somewhat tempted to buy the DLC at full price now, while I remember the story. I won’t though, I’m too cheap :P. Not to mention I have enough to play. I ended up reading an interpretation of the story online as it’s not clear without really thinking about it, but I highly recommend the game.


RiME

RiME

8/10
9 hours playtime

I thoroughly enjoyed this game, and found it contained a surprising amount of story considering it lacks text or speech. Anyone who enjoyed AER: Memories of old will likely enjoy it. I highly recommend it to people who enjoy puzzle games and being able to explore.

Pros:

  • Beautiful, colourful art style similar to AER: Memories of Old
  • Puzzles were not too complex for the most part
  • Tells a story via cutscenes at the end of each chapter
  • Collectibles expand on the story, but are not necessary to understand it
  • Plenty of nooks and crannies (many containing collectibles) to explore

Cons:

  • Some of the collectibles are very well hidden - I can’t imaging many people would find them without a guide
  • THAT EFFING BIRD IN CHAPTER 2. I was so happy with the finale. I found it discouraged exploration and made some areas frustrating as it gave me mere seconds to try and figure out the puzzle before dying
  • Some areas, especially chapter 3 and later, are too dark. I understand the desire to make it atmospheric and realistic, but I found myself getting of the couch and up close to the TV to try and make out what was going on. I could have increased the brightness, but then non-dark areas look washed out.

Verdict: 8/10

An SG win I’ve been trying to get for a while. IIRC someone here told me I’d like it since I liked AER: Memories Of Old. I think I still prefer that one, but I did really enjoy this game and am glad I won it. I found the ending to the story… unexpected. I suspect a lot of people would have found it more obvious though, I’m not great at predicting these things. Or maybe I just don’t try… makes it more fun that way!


Goat Simulator: GoatZ

Goat Simulator: GoatZ

8/10
7 hours
15 of 16 achievements

Quite difficult if you don't use the no hunger or casual mods. Entertaining for a while, but don't expect to get a huge amount of playtime out of it. The game consists of a new city area that clearly makes heavy use of assets from the two areas of the base game. It's basically half of the city and half of the country with a few new things thrown in.

Pros:

  • As with the base game there are plenty of secrets to find
  • There are no hunger and casual mods if you find survival too difficult/frustrating
  • You can craft/find various weapons (also random clothing and bumper cars)
  • Sugar makes anything edible

Cons:

  • You get hungry extremely fast which makes survival quite difficult without mods
  • The diagrams representing what you need to craft things weren't always clear in what it represented

Verdict: 7/10

Finally got around to playing this DLC that I bought during a sale at some point. Since I gave up on Gods Will Be Watching I’m using it as G for my ABC list. I didn’t like it at first but once I unlocked some mods that made it easier it was more enjoyable. Without mods I found you get hungry way too quickly. If you enjoyed the base game you’ll likely enjoy this too.


Recent Acquisitions

So basically I haven’t beaten as many games as I’d have liked, but I got some fairly lengthy ones. I think I may be turning into a collector. I want to play them all though! Realistically that’s likely impossible, even if I don’t like admitting it. I can still try though!

August '19 Play Log II


Hammer 2

Hammer 2

3/10
2 hours playtime
no achievements

Looks like it was made in the mid 90s. Arcade shooter with nothing going for it. You’re OP for the most part, the enemies are weak, until you hid a random very hard level near the end. Clearly ran out of ideas for levels early on, they seem to be the most random things you can think of (destroy X buildings, barrels, cars, boxes, often with no enemies).

Pros:

  • it’s short

Cons:

  • glitchy
  • very easy until one particular level
  • Random objectives, frequently unchallenging and with no enemies
  • graphics look ancient

Verdict: 3/10

Old crappy SG win. Probably an asset flip, not sure why it has decent reviews.


Action Henk

Action Henk

7/10
3 hours playtime

If you’re into runners this is definitely a good game to try out. Not for people (like me) with poor reflexes though. It’s tough.

Pros:

  • Cute animations and backgrounds
  • Good music
  • Good track variety keeps things interesting

Cons:

  • The later levels get quite tough, so if you have poor reflexes you’ll struggle a lot

Verdict: 7/10

Another SG win I probably shouldn’t have entered. It looks good, and if you like runners I’m sure you’d enjoy it, but I don’t have the reflexes for this sort of game. It was selected for Play or Pay, but it’s not worth the frustration to try and finish it.


Karaski: What Goes Up...

Karaski: What Goes Up...

5/10
4 hours playtime

Mediocre, but it could use some polish. IMO not worth the full price. It’s not bad, just not good enough to be worth spending time and money on.

Pros:

  • Music isn’t bad
  • The idea of being able to make your own story is good

Cons:

  • ‘Making your own story’ is largely irrelevant to the game
  • I never felt that invested in the story, and it felt like it lacked depth
  • The ‘sneaking’ mechanic wasn’t done that well
  • There’s no way to gain all tools in a single playthrough, so there will always be areas you can’t get to
  • WARNING: achievements are broken. Multiple posts on forum about it, dev responded but has never fixed it

Verdict: 5/10

This is from my wishlist unplayed and ABC lists. Unfortunately it didn’t turn out to be as good as I’d hoped, and the achievements are broken.


Henry The Hamster Handler VR

Henry The Hamster Handler VR

6/10
3 hours playtime

Given the price this is a decent game, but there are much better VR games out there. If you have good reflexes you’ll likely do well at this game. If your reflexes are as bad as mine you likely won’t have the patience to get anywhere near beating it.

Pros:

  • Cute with entertaining speech bubbles and sound effects
  • Challenging, and gives your arm a workout
  • Can be quite funny and entertaining (though unfortunately not for long)

Cons:

  • Apparently hamsters burst when they drown?
  • Most of the traps are introduced very quickly. After the first 3 or so stages I don’t think there’s anything new. Levels are just more elaborate and the hamsters move faster. Consequently it gets old quickly.
  • Gets very hard very fast. There are 30 stages with 5 levels each. I gave up after completing the 7th stage. I could have done more, but every single level required many attempts until my movements were trained enough to do things in the right order fast enough.
  • Related to above, you only have one hand. Your other ‘hand’ has a hook that (apart from killing hamsters) does nothing. I think it would help the difficulty if it could at least push buttons and perhaps help with some of the other simple traps.

Verdict: 6/10

SG win. It’s decent but gets too hard too fast and then doesn’t introduce anything new. I enjoyed it but it got too difficult. I dislike putting enjoyable games in my Won’t Play list, but given that I’m only on level 8 of 30 (each of which have 5 sublevels) there’s no way I can finish it.


Unheard

Unheard

9/10
7 hours playtime

I unique game that is very much worth playing, and IMO worth the full price.

Pros:

  • Unique concept that works extremely well
  • The individual cases get harder as the game goes on, but are never too difficult to the point of being frustrating
  • There is something of a story connecting the individual cases together that makes things very interesting
  • The ending is extremely well done

Cons:

  • I occasionally had issues hearing people due to there being multiple conversations in the room. Repositioning myself was somewhat helpful but there are times it would have been nice if other conversations could be quieter, or if you could ‘focus’ on nearby conversations to quiet others.
  • The voice acting seemed amateurishly done at times. It seems like it was meant to be over the top, but even taking that into account there were some lines that felt awkward and/or poorly delivered
  • It would be nice to be able to rewind/fast forward when paused

Verdict: 9/10

Got this during the summer sale and absolutely loved it. I highly recommend it. Unfortunately the free DLC isn’t as good.


That’s it for this month. I’ve been playing No Man’s Sky in VR as well, I’m 11 hours in and thoroughly enjoying it.

August '19 Play Log I

A friend got me $40 for steam for my 30th birthday and I just used it to buy No Man’s Sky, so something tells me there won’t be a second post for this month xD.


Ken Follett's The Pillars of the Earth

Ken Follett's The Pillars of the Earth

6/10
16 hours playtime

Personally I haven’t read the story, but if you think you would enjoy it and like story based games I highly recommend this. Just don’t fall into the trap I did and buy it just because you love story based games though. If you don’t think you’d read the book, don’t buy the game.

Pros:

  • Very well voice acted
  • Graphics are reasonably good
  • Very much revolves around the story
  • There are some choices you can make that affect the game in various ways

Cons:

  • Mouth movement is bad, and not always synced to when the character is speaking
  • After finishing the first book I went to start the next one another day and it couldn’t find my progress. Thankfully I had a manual save so only had to replay about 20 minutes.
  • The story itself is frequently tragic and at times frustrating (i.e. characters do something clearly stupid and you can’t stop them). Personally I don’t like those types of stories, which largely ruined the game for me.

Verdict:
6/10

Playing Appreciated win. For some reason I got it into my head that I really wanted this game, but the story just wasn’t my cup of tea so sadly I didn’t enjoy it that much. It was very well made though.


DISTRAINT 2

DISTRAINT 2

8/10
3 hours playtime

A beautiful story and a worth successor to the first game. I’d recommend playing it first if you haven’t, as this continues where the first one left off. I’d love to see a third game in the series.

Pros:

  • Beautiful story
  • Not overly scary, but definitely has it’s creepy moments
  • Challenging but not frustrating

Cons:

  • If you miss an achievement you have to play the game again. I’d prefer if you could replay certain chapters after beating the game

Verdict: 8/10

Just as enjoyable as the first one. Hopefully there’s a third, but I doubt there will be given how it ends.


Sins Of The Demon RPG

Sins Of The Demon RPG

4/10
7 hours playtime

Another mediocre RPGMaker title. It has it’s strengths but overall is not that interesting to play.

Pros:

  • You can see where demons are, so if you don’t want to fight you can avoid them
  • You can sprint
  • Cooking and eating food for healing/sp gain/stat raises/etc makes much more sense than potions

Cons:

  • Music isn’t particularly interesting
  • Bizarre key binding choices
  • Combat is a strange mix of realtime and turn based which is confusing and doesn’t work terribly well
  • The story isn’t particularly interesting until the very end
  • It felt like most of the story took place in a few long cutscenes after you beat the final boss. It should have been more spread out throughout the game
  • There are treasure maps to find and follow, but there’s never a good reason to as money can easily be gained through crafting

Verdict: 4/10

Old SG win that I’d abandoned. I had no internet when I played this, but have gotten achievements playing offline before. I thought I’d be fine, so I went ahead and beat it, but got no achievements for it. I may well have completed it, but I’d have to start again to get the ones I couldn’t get from my existing saves, and it’s nowhere near good enough to be worth the time. Still annoyed about that.


Decay - The Mare

Decay - The Mare

6/10
2 hours playtime

Got this one free recently. It’s alright but not that great. I forgot to review it at the time and don’t remember it enough to review it now.


Recent Acquisitions

July '19 Play Log II

Another busy month, but I managed to achieve my main goal of beating 2 SG wins, unfinished games, wishlist unplayed, and ABC list games. Of course I had even more incoming, but I’m super happy with several of them.


Downward Spiral: Prologue

Downward Spiral: Prologue

6/10
58 minutes playtime

Experienced on Oculus Rift

Very short, but not surprising since it’s a prologue. It does make me intrigued for the main game, but there’s a lot of room for improvement.

Pros:

  • Very immersive
  • Great graphics
  • Floating around in zero gravity is really neat

Cons:

  • Lacked any sort of story or anything to explore. It would have been much better if you could find logs/etc to give you clues as to what happened or why you’re here.
  • Aim felt a bit off, the guns were always dragging a bit to the left
  • Being able to rotate by grabbing things rather than only by pressing buttons would be an improvement

Verdict: 6/10

Recent SG win. Good but could be better. Good enough for the main game to be on my wishlist though.


Sherlock Holmes: The Devil's Daughter

Sherlock Holmes: The Devil's Daughter

8/10
11 hours playtime

This game relies a lot on your observation skills to solve puzzles, as you may expect. Sadly my observational skills are not great, so I had to consult a walkthrough several times, but overall it was a thoroughly enjoyable experience.

Pros:

  • Brilliant voice acting
  • Challenging but not impossible puzzles
  • The game is split into cases, but there’s an overarching story connecting them ending in a very exciting grand finale

Cons:

  • Some of the puzzles seemed to be more trial and error, but it’s possible I just didn’t see/understand the clues
  • Up until the final case, a lot of the overarching story seemed like minor insignificant details that simply connected the cases. They could have made it more significant and gotten the player more involved

Verdict: 8/10

Started this ages ago and abandoned it for no reason. Glad I finished it, it was very good despite my lack of observation skills. It very much felt like a sequel but I’m not sure which of the other games is supposed to come first or in what order. Does anyone know?


Psychonauts in the Rhombus of Ruin

Psychonauts in the Rhombus of Ruin

9/10
3 hours playtime

A worthy continuation of the original game. Short, but definitely worth it for fans of the original.

Pros:

  • The original cast of character is back, as are their voice actors (or if not, I couldn’t tell the difference)
  • The puzzles are relatively straight forward
  • Enjoyable story
  • The intro and outro songs are amazing
  • The background music in general is very good

Cons:

  • If you go into an object you get a black screen that says ‘outside play area’, but in some small parts (particularly at the end) the play area is small enough that it’s difficult to stay in
  • There’s no reason not to play sitting down (as long as your chair spins) but then you end up too low down. It’s clearly intended to be played standing up despite that not being necessary

Verdict: 9/10

Picked this up not long after I first got my VR set. Absolutely loved it, I really hope Psychonauts 2 supports VR when it comes out. Anyone know if there’s a release timeline for that?


TimeLock VR

TimeLock VR

2/10
65 minutes playtime
no achievements

Experienced on Oculus Rift

Don’t buy this. It’s not completely broken, but it may as well be.

Pros:

  • The graphics (at least the parts that don’t move) are decent

Cons:

  • The graphics that do move are awful
  • The graphics used for enemies would have looked old on a SNES
  • Took me about 10 minutes of messing around with the controls to get them to work. Still not sure how I got the laser to appear and disappear, it’s something to do with pressing in left control stick, which is also how you move
  • Sound effects are jarring
  • No real story
  • The hardest part of the puzzle is figuring out the controls. The rest is just messing around with stuff until your goal or an (obvious) way to access it
  • In game it shows Vive controllers, which doesn’t help with figuring out how to play
  • Once you finally figure out how to play, it can be beaten in half an hour

OLD REVIEW:
This game is NOT compatible with Oculus Rift, despite what it advertises. The touch controllers don’t work at all.

Verdict: 2/10

Rift controls were fixed for this so I was able to play it. Of course it took 15 minutes of futzing about to figure that out. Being playable increased it’s score from a 1 to 2 out of 10. That should tell you all you need to know.


Cat on a Diet

Cat on a Diet

7/10
5 hours playtime

Interesting physics puzzles that are great for casual gamers or puzzle lovers.

Pros:

  • Gets more and more challenging, adding new mechanics
  • Physics is good for the most part

Cons:

  • For the most part it gets harder as you go, but every so often there are puzzles that are randomly extremely difficult
  • I found the soap bubble finicky to use
  • If you’ve given up on finding a way without using help you can end up using a power, then still having to figure out how to get past the next part, then running out of powers so having to grind easy levels to get more.
  • Some levels rely on you getting a cut exactly right so that things fall a certain way, and can be unforgiving

Verdict: 7/10

Ancient SG win for Play a Game You Won On SG. Decent puzzler.


Recent Acquisitions

Writing this section always makes me feel like a Ferengi.

July '19 Play Log I

Sadly I haven’t accomplished as much this month as I’d have liked, but to be fair I was very busy with other stuff and did sink a fair number of hours into Sudeki to finish it. My plan had been to reduce my unfinished list by 5 or 6 games, but I’ll be doing well if I get as many as three done. Also, between the sale and a good Humble Bundle, I have a tremendous number of new games so progress is definitively backwards this month.


Tiny and Big: Grandpa's Leftovers

Tiny and Big: Grandpa's Leftovers

8/10
7 hours playtime

Generally I don’t like platformers, but this one was a big exception.

Pros:

  • The small amount of story that exists is entertaining (and not remotely serious)
  • Art and animation style is excellent (I especially like the written sound effects)
  • Various hidden rooms/etc to find
  • The achievements add more challenges to the game
  • The platforming elements aren’t too difficult, so if you’re awful at platformers like me, chances are you’ll still enjoy this game

Cons:

  • Getting the screen to fit right and the mouse to cooperate when first launching was a nightmare. I’ve never seen a game that handles this so badly. If you have these issues add ‘–dialog’ in properties -> set launcher options.
  • Could have been longer. Alternatively, a sequel would be very welcome.

Verdict: 8/10

A Play or Pay challenge. I almost gave up on it after the nightmare I had getting it to full screen properly. I’m glad I didn’t because It’s a really awesome game that I highly recommend. I’ve never seen a game handle something so simple so badly before though.


Sudeki

Sudeki

6.5/10
23 hours playtime
no achievements

This game had a lot of potential, but unfortunately it never made anything of it.

Pros:

  • Decent voice acting
  • Enjoyable graphics
  • Excellent music
  • Party members are all unique with their own personalities, fighting styles, and abilities

Cons:

  • The story isn’t that interesting. It starts out boring, gets a little more interesting towards the end, then goes out with a whimper.
  • More lore throughout the world would have made it much more interesting
  • The only best character weapon in the game that’s missable is the only one that really matters
  • For the final boss fight you can’t choose the party member you prefer to fight with, but must fight with a specific one
  • Transitioning from first person for the ranged party members to third person for the melee ones can be a bit strange
  • The cutscenes shown for all abilities disrupts fight in a frustrating way
  • Going through doors is a cutscene that often leaves the camera facing your party, so you then have to turn it around so you can see before you can keep going.

Verdict: 6.5/1

SG win. I did enjoy parts of it, but it’s really unfortunate to see games that have potential throw it away. Granted it’s probably a result of budget, which is understandable.


Chaos on Deponia

Chaos on Deponia

7/10
8 hours playtime

Decent but I found it harder than the first one. I just didn’t enjoy it nearly as much and I’m not entirely sure why.

Pros:

  • The songs between acts continue to be marvellous
  • Voice acting continues to be good.

Cons:

  • Much more difficult
  • Still lacks a hint system
  • I found a significant amount of the humour in this one fell flat or was just plain stupid

Verdict: 7/10

I completely forgot to review this after playing it, so my review lacks a bit this time. I wasn’t a big fan of this, not sure why but I didn’t enjoy it that much. Partly I think I should have ignored the achievements instead of trying to get them all. I really hope the third instalment is better.


Refunct

Refunct

8/10
82 minutes playtime

Good if short. This game felt more like a demo/preview/proof of concept for what could have been a larger game.

Pros:

  • Enjoyable puzzles that are challenging but not frustrating
  • The achievements add more challenge once you beat the game the first time
  • Gorgeous graphics

Cons:

  • Can be beaten in less than half an hour on your first run
  • If the sun is in the same direction as the next button to step on, the red beat that goes up to show you where it is is very difficult to see
  • Left me wanting to play it more, but there was no more to play

Verdict: 8/10

Picked this up during the recent sale and thoroughly enjoyed it. My biggest gripe is that it’s too short.


Recent Acquisitions

June '19 Play Log III

Well, the year is now half over so time to take another look at my goals and see how badly I’ve done. First though, some more games beaten.

Overall:

13%
19%
12%
47%
9%

SG:

19%
43%
5%
20%
13%

ABC:

15%
37%
11%
37%
0%
Lost Chronicles of Zerzura

Lost Chronicles of Zerzura

6/10
7 hours playtime
no achievements

Decent puzzles if sometimes difficult/counter-intuitive, the story isn’t terribly interesting though.

Pros:

  • Decent puzzles
  • Being an inventor means combining collecting and combining random items actually makes a bit of sense, unlike most games of this style

Cons:

  • Desperately needs a hint system. I ended up using a walkthrough for a lot of it because I would get stuck
  • Shift+tab to open Steam overlay can cause you to skip cutscenes/discussions
  • Alt+tab doesn’t cooperate, can crash the game
  • Some parts at the end have to be figured out and done quickly or you’ll die and have to reload your last save, which I’m not a fan of for this particular genre

Verdict: 6/10

Old SG win on my ABC list. Overall meh, not bad but nothing about it stands out as particularly good either.


Odysseus Kosmos and his Robot Quest: Adventure Game

Odysseus Kosmos and his Robot Quest: Adventure Game

7/10
16 hours playtime

I found this slow to start, but it picked up in the second half. Overall I enjoyed it, but if the first 2 episodes where more interesting it would have been far better. If you enjoy point and click puzzle games you’ll likely enjoy this. If story is important to you as well you could do worse than this game, but you could also do better.

Pros:

  • Towards the end of the game the story gets interesting
  • The puzzles are very good for the most part, neither too easy nor too hard
  • The hint system is generally pretty good
  • I really liked the song that was played at the end of each episode

Cons:

  • Slow to start, first 2 episodes were boring story-wise
  • I got the feeling there were parts that were supposed to be funny, but for the most part they weren’t
  • The very last puzzle was very confusing. It took me forever to figure out what I had to do, and even longer to do it. In the end it was sheer luck that I managed it.
  • There were points where (I thought I) had completed everything the hint was indicating but it didn’t change, and I had trouble figuring out how to proceed.

Verdict: 7/10

Picked this up recently in a trade. It doesn’t start off terribly strongly but it does get better in the later half. Overall I enjoyed it, but it wasn’t as good as I’d hoped.


Added to the Backlog

  • Immortal Redneck
    Immortal Redneck

    0 minutes playtime

    0 of 44 achievements

  • Goals

    So far it seems that my revised goals should be achievable, but not easily.

    70% beaten SG wins ratio: Started the year at 50% and I’m now at 62%, so perfectly on track for this one.
    Max 30 40 Wishlist Unplayed games: This one will be the most difficult, I’m failing to even tread water here. With my recent purchases it’s gone up to 49. I think I’ll focus on driving this down August and September, hopefully that’ll get me caught up.
    Much fewer (55) abandoned games: Down from 66 to 62 so making progress here, though there were some short ones so getting to 55 will still take some work. I’m focusing on this this month. It’s possible I’ll beat this target if I can get caught up on wishlist unplayed.

    June '19 Play Log II

    A few more games off the backlog, and for the first time in a while none added. I suspect that’ll change soon enough with the sale. I don’t intend to get much though, and no larger games until I beat some more of my previous purchases.


    Wick

    Wick

    6.5
    9 hours playtime

    If you’re a fan of horror games this is a decent one, but it’s far from perfect. At certain points it gets so difficult that you have to repeat areas many times to beat them, at which point the horror elements get old and the gameplay can get frustrating, ruining the experience.

    Pros:

    • The atmosphere is done very well
    • Strikes a good mix of creepy atmosphere and children along with the occasional jumpscare
    • The sound of the forest, the children, and how the music gets louder and quieter depending on how close the children are is very well done and adds to the atmosphere
    • The children and their actions are genuinely creepy

    Cons:

    • I imagine it would be boring/repetitive if you’re less interested in trying to trigger the various events etc required for achievements. To beat the game you really just need to run around the forest not being killed for the night, there’s nothing more to it than that.
    • There is some story present, but it could have been improved and expanded on so that you get a better idea of what actually happened by the end of the game.
    • The difficulty in avoiding some children negatively effects the horror elements, because it comes less scary and more frustrating having to continuously repeat it because some of the children are more difficult to avoid, especially in the No Way Out expansion
    • The behaviour of the children is changed in the No Way Out expansion. In some cases this is okay, but some of the changes add an element of luck, and if you get unlucky you’ll die and there’s nothing you can do about it

    Verdict: 6.5/10

    Old SG win that I beat almost exactly a year after winning it. I beat the main story line but not the No Way Out add on seeing as it was just too hard. Overall it did a very good job of the horror and suspense elements, but fell into a trap I’ve seen before. It’s quite difficult later in the night, and even more so in the No Way Out addon, so you end up repeating the same experience long enough that it gets old and frustrating, and the horror elements loose their effect. I get that there needs to be a challenge, but having players need to constantly repeating the same part should be a no-no, especially for horror games. I also felt like they could have added more lore/story without sacrificing the feel of the game, but it was still enjoyable overall.


    Batman - The Telltale Series

    Batman - The Telltale Series

    7/10
    7 hours playtime

    Overall a decent game. Not Telltale’s best work, but if you’re a fan on their games you’ll probably enjoy this. I’m not sure how I feel about them doing action games though. Obviously anything Batman related has to have action in it. For this game it’s simply quicktime events, and if you miss too many you die and have to try again. It’s extremely straight forward and feels quite pointless. The story is decent though. As with all Telltale games it won’t change drastically based on your choices - certain events will happen one way or the other, and the ending doesn’t change. The details of the story, how you get to the ending, and the relationship between various characters is what changes.

    Pros:

    • Decent story with some tough choices and surprises
    • Genuinely curious to find out what would have happened if I had changed some decisions, so there is replay value here
    • Voice acting is good
    • Has many familiar characters but Telltale puts their own spin on things, rather than sticking to the same established backstories (though I’m not familiar with the comics, so maybe it was the movies that were different)

    Cons:

    • I came across at least one story bug where I didn’t give a cops name to a reporter, but later the story acted as if I had
    • Quicktime events for action sequences isn’t that interesting
    • Sometimes there were quicktime events or push a button to do something that felt unnecessary, like ‘we should put something here so they player doesn’t get bored’
    • There are the tough choices near the beginning where it’s more of a genuine ‘do I do the right thing or do I take revenge’ type of question, but later in the story where you’d be more tempted to take revenge rather than arrest someone (for example) you aren’t given the option

    Verdict: 7/10

    Play or pay pick. I picked this up along with some others when Telltale was being removed from stores. It’s decent but I don’t think Telltale’s formula works terribly well with action games like Batman. The quicktime events for the fights felt a bit pointless. Story wise it was quite good, and was an interesting take on the Batman universe that I’d never heard before (although seeing as I’ve only seen the movies that doesn’t say much). Another thing I dislike though, in the later half of the game you no longer get the ‘kill vs arrest the criminal option’, which is where the decision would have been tougher to make.


    Paratopic

    Paratopic

    4/10
    2 hours playtime

    This is one of those games you finish and think ‘WTF did I just play?’. That by itself isn’t a bad thing but there has to be something about it that makes the game enjoyable, and I just didn’t find anything.

    Pros:

    • Reasonably straight forward, so you won’t get stuck
    • Somewhat intriguing graphic and sound style that could work if the story was actually interesting in some way

    Cons:

    • The atmosphere is somewhat suspenseful, but overall this fails to meet the standards of a horror or suspense game, at least for me
    • Despite being less than an hour long there are three relatively lengthy driving sections that add nothing to the game
    • Mutually exclusive achievements in a game with next to no replayability
    • Achievements don’t pop up as you get them, but at the end of the game, meaning you have to beat it even if you only missed one achievement at the very beginning
    • Related to above, there’s supposedly a chime to indicate you got an achievement, but even when I was listening for it I often couldn’t hear it

    Verdict: 4/10

    SG win. This point disappointed me honestly. Despite being only an hour long it still contains a significant amount of material that serves no purpose beyond making it longer. I really don’t think it’s wroth your time to play.


    Budget Cuts

    Budget Cuts

    9/10
    9 hours playtime

    Experienced on Oculus Rift

    This is a must have for any VR owners. It’s a brilliant game that’ll have you crawling around the floor. I imagine it’s probably ideal in a large room with 360 degree tracking, but it worked quite well in my small computer room with only 2 sensors. I came across two bugs, but nothing insurmountable.

    Pros:

    • The variety of difficulties is done well
    • Good graphics, sound, voices, etc
    • The office worker robots are quite entertaining
    • They actually give you a reason for the teleportation locomotion, which I thought was a really nice touch
    • Somewhat interesting story that’s left open for a sequel (which I would buy in a heartbeat)

    Cons:

    • The ‘Sniper’ achievement is next to impossible to get
    • At the start of the game you’re supposed to have a pager delivered that explains what’s going on and how to get the movement device. You can’t do the game without it. For me this didn’t happen. I had to figure it out from playthroughs. Eventually I found the pager sitting on a random table, but I wasted over an hour stuck at the beginning because of this.
    • Another bug I came across was items getting ‘stuck’ in my inventory, making them unusable and taking up a valuable inventory spot.

    Verdict: 9/10

    This was one of the first VR games I bought. I beat the campaign on normal difficulty back in February then took a break. Finally got around to checking out the 4 arcade mode missions, which was intended for people who want to be able to jump right in investing in the story. I can see this as being valuable for VR arcades, but beyond that there’s really no point in it so I ended up not bothering with it. I attempted to get the Sniper achievement, but it’s next to impossible seeing as it requires blindly throwing knives 20 meters (not easy) and hoping you hit a guard you can’t see who’s a floor below you (unlikely). Considered replaying the campaign on hard as well, but wasn’t in the mood. I’ll probably go back to it at some point though. Overall I thoroughly enjoyed this game and highly recommend it for VR owners.

    June '19 Play Log

    Nothing terribly interesting this time. I finally feel like I’m making a dent in my unfinished list, albeit a small one. Too bad the same can’t be said for my wishlist unplayed list.


    The Walking Dead

    The Walking Dead

    8.5/10
    13 hours playtime

    Overall I quite enjoyed this game, even though I’ve never seen this even though I’ve never seen the show or the comic books. There were several points where I didn’t like either of the options and would have liked to do something different that wasn’t an option, but it’s understandable that they can only provide so many choices. There are definitely some hard choices to make, and the story plays with your emotions quite well.

    Pros:

    • Good voice acting
    • The characters were well done and felt like they had their own unique personalities
    • Relatively interesting story
    • There are definitely points that make me wonder what would have happened if I’d made a different choice, so the game definitely has replayability.

    Cons:

    • The camera angles were frequently quite bad, and made finding things awkward
    • The ‘last time on’ could have been done better. I played the first episode long before I finished the rest of the game, and there kept being references to things I couldn’t remember and wasn’t reminded of at the beginning of the second episode.

    Verdict: 8.5/10

    Play or pay pick. Overall I quite enjoyed it, but not as much as Tales from the Borderlands. I do wish I had played it all in one go though rather than only playing episode 1 then abandoning it. Something tells me I couldn’t play the rest of it, either because they weren’t out or I didn’t have them, I don’t recall though. That’ll probably be a recurring theme as I try and work through my abandoned games backlog.


    A Story About My Uncle

    A Story About My Uncle

    8/10
    4 hours playtime

    Overall I enjoyed this game, especially the scenery. I’m not big into platformers though so I found it quite difficult. If you’re not good a platformers the main game is challenging enough. The achievements are more challenging still.

    Pros:

    • Brilliant graphics and scenery
    • Good voice acting
    • I really like Maddie
    • The controls work very well

    Cons:

    • The story really only exists as an excuse for the gameplay
    • It would have been nice if the towns/cities were larger and more interesting to explore, especially the second one

    Verdict: 8/10

    Another play or pay pick. Pretty fun, though fairly difficult in parts. The scenery is amazing. I really did finish the story, but there’s no achievement for it. The achievements for this looked way too difficult considering I struggled in parts as it was, so I don’t think it’s worth trying to get any of them.


    No Time To Explain Remastered

    No Time To Explain Remastered

    2 hours playtime

    This game is very difficult. The good news is that if you die you usually resume near where you died, but you can only do that so many times before you have to restart the level. That doesn’t help though if you fall to the ground from a higher platform that’s really difficult to get to. I found myself frequently playing the same section over and over until I finally managed to move on through sheer luck. Eventually I got to a place I couldn’t move on from. Based on a Youtube playthrough I was a quarter of the way through and it was only getting harder, so I opted to drop it. I dislike giving up on games without beating them, but if I’m not enjoying it then there’s really no point.

    SG win. This was originally a play or pay pick that I had to drop due to the difficulty. I opted not to leave a review on Steam since I’m not exactly the target market and was unable to get very far. What do you think the chance is that I’ve finally learned my lesson regarding platformers?


    Yesterday Origins

    Yesterday Origins

    7/10
    6 hours playtime

    Fairly decent but not amazing, same as with the first game to which this is a sequel. The story is better thanks partly to it being longer, but it still wouldn’t win any awards.

    Pros:

    • Good voice acting
    • Fairly decent story (better than the first game)
    • I quite liked the ending. FYI there’s an after credits cutscene.

    Cons:

    • I don’t think this one had a button to view all interactable areas. There are achievements for each chapter for getting all of these and despite doing my best to find them all I didn’t get any of the achievements.
    • The game warns you it’s better on controller but that’s no reason for the mouse/keyboard controls to be finicky. It felt like they put in the bare minimum effort and couldn’t be bothered to improve them.
    • Requires a second playthrough to get all achievements, despite having no replay value.

    Verdict: 7/10

    This game was on my wishlist for a while before I picked it up, and recently got and beat the first game so I could finally play it. It’s better than the first, but honestly I’m not convinced it was worth the time to play given there are so many amazing games out there. On a different note, why on EARTH do developers feel the need to put mutually exclusive achievements in games with NO replay value whatsoever?


    Finding Paradise

    Finding Paradise

    9/10
    5 hours playtime

    One of the best games I’ve ever played. It has an absolutely brilliant story, and is very much worth playing. It continues the story started with To The Moon and free DLC, as well as A Bird Story, but you don’t have to have played them to enjoy this game.

    Pros:

    • Brilliant story with twists that kept me guessing until the very end, which is quite rare in my experience
    • Great soundtrack
    • Well animated; I found the facial animations particularly expressive

    Cons:

    • Started getting a bit dry around the 2 hour mark, but it picked back up again quickly after that

    Verdict: 9/10

    SG win. I actually beat this last month, but forgot to include it in my last post. Overall I enjoyed it as much as the first game (To The Moon). I generally avoid RPGMaker titles, but this is proof that it is in fact possible to make good games with it.


    Recent Acquisitions