Traqie’s profile

I’ll play almost anything. Achievement hunter. Favorite genres: FPS, RTS, Horror games.

AStats profile
Backloggery profile

LISTS:

Currently playing - self-explanatory
On hold - Games that I took a break from OR I haven’t 100% yet due to lack of partner, date specific achievs or for some other reason.
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Dear PoP picker - Ignore “to complete” lists and just look at “to beat”. Some games didn’t had times on HLTB so I assigned them based on astats polls or just feeling ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Short = 0-8 hours to beat (main story) or complete (100% achievements)
Medium = 8-15 hours to beat (main story) or complete (100% achievements)
Long = 15-25 hours to beat (main story) and complete (100% achievements)
Very Long = >25 hours to beat (main story) and complete (100% achievements)

Times taken from HowLongToBeat.com


5th July 2020

Hey hey people,

Boy, it’s been 4 months since my last update and I only bring this…I did beat three more games actually, but I’m saving those for next report as I expect to beat at least 6 more by the end of July as part of Cjcomplex “Monthly in a monthly” games. Next one is gonna be a big one!

And I hope everyone is doing ok. In my country restrictions are pretty much off, except having to wear masks in closed spaces but half of people don’t do that already and among those that do, a lot of them wear it without covering their nose… which to me is more frustrating to see than someone without a mask… why, why is it so hard for some people?

Also big thank you to Arbiter Libera, I stole borrowed the template for screenshot showcase from him, like the one you see in my A Hat in time review, I also used it in my Black Mesa review but I completely forgot to mention that back then 😰

Anyway back to games

  • The Void

    7.9 hours playtime

    no achievements

  • I tried but honestly this game really bores me… I even started using the walkthrough from GameFAQs but I kind forgot about this game. I should probably finish this as I think I’m 2/3 done but man I’m gonna rate it pretty low if things don’t change :S It’s from the team that did Pathologic, I really hope at least that game is better than this as I often hear nothing but praises for Pathologic games.

    Played cyrano back in april

    Half-Life 2

    Cyrano Story

    3/10
    0.9 hours
    13 of 13 achievements

    I played it for free game like everyone else. Sadly I was too late and didn’t get anything :/ Played with guide after trying to figure it out myself, some answers make sense and I think I would figure it out with time, some don’t (to me at least). Not really worth playing it now…

    Half-Life 2

    A Hat in Time - Nyakuza Metro + Online Party

    7/10
    3 hours
    8 of 8 achievements

    I wasn’t very interested in the online mode for this, but honestly even I am a little disappointed by the implementation of this mode. You’ll see a new machine in your spaceship which lets you join a party game. Simply put a name and any other players that have typed the same name for lobby will be connected. You can hang out together on the spaceship and do chapters together. But everything is the same, you progress on your own, nothing is synced, not even enemies. It’s basically like having a ghost that you can emote with. If you start a chapter at similar time you can compete who gathers more gems and the person to first pick up the time piece gets a lot of bonus gems, but that’s it. Really weak co-op implementation. But it’s quite impressive you can have 50 other people at the same time.

    The Nyakuza metro is pretty awesome tho. A big city with colorful neon signs and metro system where HUGE cats server as a locomotive. And it’s runned by big black sphinx cat lady and her mafia (not the same as Mafia in base game). The new outfits and color schemes are pretty awesome. To move around the city you need metro passes, you get your first one from boss lady and over time find new ones and the whole area is similar to Alpine Skies where you can access every time piece from the get go, you don’t really need to pick a chapter from the book (at least that’s how I remember alpine sky worked…). Story is kinda lackluster tho, the boss lady wants the timepieces for herself and you work for her at the start, you give them back to her after finding them only to steal them all near the end. But you won’t know anything about the city or the boss lady herself. The base game and the first DLC were a little more fleshed out than this.




    Overall it’s an ok DLC but could be a little better. IMO wait for it to go on a sale.

    Half-Life 2

    11-11 Memories Retold

    8/10
    13.8 hours
    50 of 50 achievements

    03 – The German Engineer
    11 – The Battle of Vimy Ridge
    16 – An Unmarked Grave
    23 – Confrontation

    I did not expect to like this one as much as I did. A narrative-adventure game (or in other words, a walking sim with some easy puzzles and simple gameplay here and there) set in The Great War/WWI. Though set during actual historical event, the two characters you play as and their history is completely fictional AFAIK. You play as Harry the photographer on the Canadian side and Kurt the engineer on the German side, so you get to experience the war from both sides. Eventually both characters get to meet and their stories connect.

    You may notice from screenshots that the game has some strange artsy visuals. This is because the engine tries to “paint” everything in impressionist style, which was a dominant painting style back in this era. For me it’s a mixed result, sometimes it looks pretty and everything Is more or less visible, sometimes it’s just a visual mess and I couldn’t tell what’s in the room. But I appreciate that they at least went with something that has connection to time when The Great War is set and not picking something random just to look different and artsy. But the game is not focused on teaching you history, it’s main focus is to tell a story. Through the game you’ll stumble unto photographs and if you gather all the pieces you unlock a small memorabilia that tells you about a small fact from the war. This ranges from tactics, logistics and life in trenches to civilian life, newspapers etc. a little bit of everything. But it’s easy to miss most of these pieces if you don’t look for them so it’s possible to miss them all and learn nothing new. And some of them can only be found via Harry’s camera, which brings me to our protagonists.


    Small piece of history. You unlock these after finding enough pieces of photos in level.


    Harry is the first character that’s introduced. He’s a young Canadian, working with his best friend Julia in her father’s photography shop and Julia is ofc his love interest. One day Major Barret comes in looking for a photographer for the war and Harry signs up to get that uniform and find glory and heroism in the war and ultimately to impress Juliet. He’s young and stupid and maybe my biggest gripe with him is that he never grows, he seems to stay the same regardless of the ending. At one point Kurt even says “he is a coward with a camera who believes he is some kind of hero” and frankly I kinda agree. He’s voiced by Elijah Wood (Frodo from LOTR) and he does really great, not so much on some sad parts of the game, tho I feel like the director is there to blame, not him. Since he is a photographer you get the camera as him and sometimes have to take pictures the game tells you too to progress, but you can also photograph anything you want and keep them, there also optional objectives you can photograph and sometimes you get pieces to unlock memorabilia. When photographing you have some freedom how to take a photo, you can stand anywhere you want, pick different zoom and angle. At one point one of the characters shows you your photos and I think they were just the way I took them :)

    Kurt is the opposite of Harry, he joins the army to find his son who is MIA and believes he is still alive. He’s more of a tragic character and it’s really just downhill for his story, how bad it ends, depends on you. Instead of photographing you will solve very simple puzzles and sometimes do some eavesdropping on enemies with stethoscope, in practice it’s just moving your mouse on the right spot and pressing E. He is somewhere in his 40’s and is not interested in glory and heroism and is very determined to find his son. Although I am not a father so I cannot really empathize with him, he’s the one I really cared most through the whole story.

    When you don’t do any of the above you usually just walk around, doing simple tasks, there are few moments when you can die but most of the game is without consequences. Still, I found myself to really enjoy the story. There’s also a twist near the end that I absolutely did not see coming, but I honestly wasn’t that hooked up into the game at the start so I’m not sure if it surprised me because I didn’t paid much attention at start.

    Also huge props to Olivier Deriviere and London Philharmonia Orchestra for the OST, it’s phenomenal! Up there with ABZU OST, definitely something I’m gonna get.



    Half-Life 2

    Space Run

    7/10
    28.5 hours
    30 of 30 achievements

    I wasn’t sure what to expect, I only remember watching TotalBiscuit showing this years ago on his “WTF is…” series and I remember it looked interesting. I was kinda expecting some rogue-like in space but I was wrong. There’s almost zero randomness as far as I can tell, the levels, enemy placement, timings etc are not random which was a pleasant surprise!

    You are a space scumbag smuggler, a cheap rip-off of Han Solo with IMO a pretty bad voice actor. You work for various corporations that want you to move cargo and you have to protect it from pirates and asteroids of varying size. You don’t control your ship, it moves in a straight line from point A to B and you can only control your speed i.e. how many engines you build. Your ship consists of hexagonal pieces where you place cargo at start, one engine and after that all the defenses and extra engines you need.

    You can build laser turrets, rocket launchers, engines, generators and defenses. Every type of building has 3 tiers which you unlock with money you get from missions and each building has it’s own 3 tier tree. So for example tier 1 turret has a tier 2 ability that allows it to fire ridiculously fast for 30 sec and it also has tier 3 passive permanent +30% dmg boost if it’s powered by generator. Or a tier 3 generator can make everything immune from dmg for a short time. And so on, each building has quite a lot of options and you build that or use special abilities with scrap. You start with some and generate more slowly over time. Each destroyed ship, drone or asteroid drops more and the bigger the better. You don’t carry any extra scrap to the next mission, so if you have loads of it there’s no point in saving it, unless you know something big is coming and you want spam a lot of special abilities in short time.


    Why yes it is a screenshot from the store! I somehow never took one myself during battle


    But during that you also need to get the cargo on time. You fail either by getting it all destroyed or if you don’t deliver it on time. At the end of the mission you get rated based on how much cargo you delivered and how fast. The faster and the more cargo you deliver, the more money you get so you can upgrade your ship and building faster. And if you don’t do well every time the game can become pretty grindy near the end, I had to repeat few missions quite a lot just to get the latest upgrades as most of them are pretty essential near end. During the actual run you also need to balance your defenses vs your speed. It’s possible to not make it on time because you spent too much on turrets and forgot to buy extra engines. This gets extra tricky on levels with bosses as they can stop your ship completely until you destroy them. The cargo is also different for every corpo. One for example specializes in nuclear cargo and on few missions you get to carry a nuclear warhead that you can use, but if you do it’s counted as cargo lost. Or one specializes in alien technology that consumes energy from nearby buildings, so everything around it needs extra +1 power to work properly.

    It’s a fun game that involves some planning and smart placement of the turrets and generators, so you can get the maximum effect. It’s also quite an impressive game considering it’s from a 1-man team.
    But the music in this game, oh my gods it’s so dull. I just turned it off at some point and listened to my own in the background. The writing is not so good either and at times really cringy. Audio-visually it’s ok, not bad looking for a 2013 indie game. But I did enjoyed it overall, at some points I really got immersed and fully focused on defending my ship, the battles can look amazing at times. If it only was less grindy near end and had better writing and story I would enjoy it more.

    9th March 2020

    Hey,

    I hope everyone is doing well during the pandemic, I was fine for a while, it’s sad but my life didn’t changed much after the lockdown lol. I only miss going to gym and taking my dog on a long walks to local park, it’s closed now and neither me nor my dog enjoy walking around the neighborhood for a long time. The peak here is supposed to happen somewhere in may, which is gonna put a lot of stress on a lot of folk here and our government just keeps coming up with new restrictions and rules while at the same time trying to push for presidential elections to happen because our current president has a high approval rating and polls highly, I guess somehow people think this moron is handling the pandemic well even tho he has little to do with that.

    Anyway despite the lockdown it was still a slow month for me when it comes to games.

  • Red Orchestra: Ostfront 41-45

    46.5 hours playtime

    44 of 44 achievements

  • I did 100% in this and it wasn’t fun. Someone at Tripwire thought it would be a great idea if achievements only counted when there are 16 or more players on the server. Sixteen. And bots don’t count, but a fellow achievement hunter managed to gather a group so we could all do it. If you don’t care about achievements, don’t bother starting it, delete it, this game is dead. And if you do care but have 0% or don’t want to look for 15 other people delete it as well. I did it because 15 years ago or so I did one achievement and this game was already counting into my completion percent on steam.

  • The Void

    3.6 hours playtime

    no achievements

  • I started it before Black Mesa came out of EA. Weird game, but I’ll try to finish it. It’s an FPS without shooting part and it has some crazy character design when it comes to “male demigods” lol. Very abstract, hopefuly it’ll make more sense to me.

    And I also completed these two gems:

    Half-Life 2

    Hotline Miami

    8/10
    14.4 hours
    35 of 35 achievements

    04 - M O O N – Crystals
    10 - Perturbator - Miami Disco
    17 - El Huervo - Turf Main
    19 - Perturbator - Electric Dreams

    Another one of these, that one could name indie “classic”. It’s 7 years old and I remember hearing a lot of praises for it when it came out in 2013. For those few that don’t know what this game is, it’s fast paced and skill based (although with some randomness, more on that later), top down, pixel art and a very brutal shooter/slasher.

    Game usually goes like this – you start a level, pick rubber animal mask that gives you some kind of buff (the starting out being the only exception, it does nothing) and your goal is to brutally murder everyone. You have good melee weapon variety as well as firearms. Melee weapons include knife’s, baseball bats, golf club, machete, fire axe, a pot and so on. Firearms arms are less varied – revolver, silenced pistol, uzi/scorpion, mp5, assault rifle and a couple of shotguns – pump and double barreled. The one complain is that it’s really hard to tell apart uzi from scorpion once you pick it up. I don’t even remember picking scorpion ever but I had to since I got an achievement for killing with every gun. If MP-5 was smaller in this game I probably wouldn’t be able to tell it apart from uzi either. But if you don’t like guns of any kind you can always use your fists. Though you can only knock someone on ground with them and have to finish them off by banging their head on the floor.


    And oh yeah, this game is very brutal and graphic, even if it’s all pixel art. Each enemy leaves a big pool of blood, you can crack their skulls open with various melee weapons or turn their heads into tiny pieces with a close shotgun blast. If you knock someone on the ground, you can finish them with any melee weapon. Sit on them and crush their head with a sledgehammer, cut their throat open with a knife or crack open their skull with few, swift crowbar hits. There also dogs that you have to kill, even if you wear a mask that makes them friendly.

    Camera is placed right above you and you can see through walls, but your view is not big enough to see the whole level. You can move camera independently if you press shift and look further, you can also lock on target to for example quickly jump from around a corner and shoot somebody but I never used it to be honest. The game also recommends controller when you launch it but it is playable with K+M, I did every level on “A+” for achievement like that. And AFAIK there is no S ranking in this game, so this was the highest possible.

    The game rewards recklessness and speed, the faster and more dangerous your approach, the better your combo will get. There’s a very short time after one kill to rack up a combo and killing with melee weapons nets you more points than firearms. The enemies are also very fast, their aim is pretty good mostly and they swarm you if they either spot you or hear your gun. Though that doesn’t always happen, here comes the randomness. Because you will often die in this game, it’s normal you will replay the same level many times just to beat it. I would often see enemies in the same spot either reacting to my gunshot or not. Sometimes every enemy on the level hears it and rushes to you. Sometimes only the guy in the next room will hear it, sometimes he won’t but two guys at the end of the level will and they will rush you instead. The weapons they get is also random, although from what I noticed the type of weapon they get is always the same. So for example one guy in this room always gets melee weapon and the other two a gun.

    [Clip] How your average Hotline Miami level plays like after you start getting grip on the game

    The music is a highlight of this game, most of music is from different artists and it wasn’t commissioned for this game, there’s some reggae in more chill moments of the game and electronic, synthwave and club music during combat levels. I honestly didn’t know most of these artists except Perturbartor. It fits the game great.

    The story is a little vague and there are 3 endings, one perhaps the “true” ending requires you to find a password to a computer. But it’s not the focus of the game and at one point devs break the 4th wall and just tell you it’s a game (and maybe they also say “fuck the story, gameplay is what is more important” but that’s just my interpretation). If you haven’t yet, give this game a try! If you don’t care about achievements you can finish this one in 5-8 hours.

    Half-Life 2

    Black Mesa

    +9/10
    43.4 hours
    50 of 50 achievements

    Xen 02 – Internal Conflict
    Xen 13 – Ascension
    Earth 12 – Forget About Freeman
    Earth 27 – Surface Tension 3

    Absolutely amazing recreation of the original. It tries to make an OG Half-life more modern while also trying to stay faithful to the original and I think it succeeded for the most part. There are some level design changes or specific encounters where it is a small downgrade from original, but I could count these on just one hand.

    I remember majority of levels but throughout the whole game I was positively surprised in almost every corner. Old and familiar levels were recreated with much more detail while retaining the layout and paths. And some were drastically changed but most of that happened in levels that either had no combat or very little of it. Thankfully they kept most pieces where combat happens the same, and the few that got changed (or added completely new) are better for most part 😊 Xen has received the biggest changes and it’s what we’ve been waiting for since the free mod release in 2012 which lacked these last levels. Xen is now much, much bigger and longer. And much, much better. You can pretty much forget what you remember from original Xen. Most of areas have been scrapped or redesigned to the point where they don’t look like the OG Xen, it’s also more varied. There parts with strange fauna where most of Xen wildlife resides like hound eye’s and bullsquids, it’s where Black Mesa set it’s Xen HQ to study the area until it was overtaken, Gonarch Lair is not a 5 minute fight anymore but a tough boss fight that only ends with you wounding Gonarch, a long chase after her until she starts chasing you again and ends with a final stand where this banger plays in the background. Build up to final boss is so amazing, it felt like Xen forces start throwing everything at you to stop you. Final boss got a great redesign and is now a multi-phase battle. And the whole Xen is so beautiful now, especially the first part with its lush environment and cosmic sky above you. Overall there’s a lot more exploring too and solving puzzles. Platforming is still here but not as much and now you have something called “landing jets” which completely negate falling damage and it was a frustrating part of OG Xen, you could easily kill yourself there. No more in this remake…well unless you fall into the void ;p



    Human AI has been improved from what I can tell. It used combine soldier AI in free mod from what I can tell which was dumber than human grunts AI in OG Half-life, combine soldiers would just stand like dummies or rush straight into your face and occasionally throw a grenade, but here on improved AI, soldiers try to flank you, suppress fire on your last position and throw grenades more often, even more than in original but since they are an actual physical objects you can pick up and throw back it’s not a big issue.

    Gunplay is great for a source engine game. The one thing that in my opinion was a downgrade in HL2 from HL were guns. Thankfully the guns feel, sound and shoot more like those in original than a reskin of those from Half-life 2. I can only wish shotgun in HL2 felt so powerful and impactful like the one in Black Mesa. MP-5 feels quite powerful for a SMG and has nice and controllable recoil, Gluon gun feels more like a devastating Ghostbuster gun and has its own special moment in Interloper level, something similar to how gravity gun got a power up in HL2 Citadel near the end. .357 is exactly the same like in HL2 from what I can tell, which is the only gun that didn’t need any changes, so that’s good they left it as it was, but you can use iron sights now with it. Glock doesn’t feel like a toy gun (looking at you, HL2 pistol). Each weapon has a special pick up animation when you get it for first time.

    [Clip] Nothing to say only how I wish I could just embed these into post without getting potato quality or injecting half of streamable site with the clip into the post

    Soundtrack is different and sounds nothing like original Kelly Bailey OST. Every track that plays on Xen is excellent and fits really nicely with that they made. The “earth” part on its own is not that bad but I don’t think it always fitted what happened on screen. For example when you are on your way back to control room in rocket engine test pit where green tentacles spawned, this “epic” rock music starts blasting in your ears while you try to slowly sneak up the room like you’re doing something amazing. And instead of industrial and electric music the whole “earth” OST feels more “rock” like if it makes any sense lol, but it is very atmospheric at times.

    This and few other minor annoyances prevent this me to feel like a 10/10 game. Xen could use a lot of optimization in certain levels. Certain small encounters got questionable changes and it felt like they had no idea what they were doing. They also recreated multiplayer from original but I haven’t touched, its probably something you can ignore anyways, in original it was basically a worse version of Quake II/Quake MP.



    Hey hey hey people,

    Here’s my supa late 2019 recap, a catch-up from my last post and since we recently entered a new decade, I decided to list ten games I played and enjoyed the most that came out between January 1st 2010 and December 31th 2019.

    Alright, let’s start with a short catch-up…

  • The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth
    The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth

    600.0 hours playtime

    399 of 403 achievements

  • Since my last post, majority of my time was consumed by IRL and The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth. I’m soooooo close to 100% this game and I’m certain I can pull it off before the next and hopefuly this time REALLY the last expansion comes out in summer this year. I’m stuck on beating Mega Satan as The Keeper, trying to get the right build + get lucky with angel rooms and not messing up my chances is really difficult… Having perma 2 heart containers and no flying, garbage stats across the board from start makes it the most difficult character, The Lost is pretty easy in comparisment…

    But between Isaac I managed to beat something else.

    Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor - Bright Lord

    Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor - Bright Lord

    8/10
    3 hours
    10 of 10 achievements

    A prequel and last DLC for SoM, The Bright Lord is a short but very fun DLC that fixes one of the biggest mistakes that happened in the base game, that being the last boss fight. In this DLC you fight against Sauron himself while YOU hold the one ring and only thanks to it you stand a chance as Sauron is pretty big and powerful even without it.

    You play as Celebrimbor who is the wraith that inhabits your body in base game. It’s basically his short story how he got turned into a wraith and how Sauron tricked him into making the ring.

    Gameplay wise this DLC is similar but it’s much more focused on truly using the one ring and swaying uruks to your side. Your HP pool is the same as Talion at the start, but the perks that increase that are gone, which makes it easier to die. You can now use your AOE attack (after charging combos) to brand uruks and at any time you can summon a group of five uruks to fight for you. Before you fight Sauron, you have to retake his land from him by branding or killing uruks controlling territory and building your tower there. After that, your territory is dominated by uruks friendly to you, but some survivors roam on. Oh and you do have the one ring through the whole game and can use it like Talion could use his sword ultimate to have never ending combo, but the one ring in addition to never ending combo also slows down time. It’s crucial on the last fight as that happens in the middle of the stronghold, with Sauron, five warchiefs and dozens of uruks and archers above you, all trying to kill you. This where you have to utilize the one ring to damage Sauron but you also need crowd control by massively branding uruks so you don’t get swarmed. It’s pretty simple but difficult fight and I really liked. Sauron is well recreated from the first movie, he towers over everybody and any uruk that happens to be in it’s way gets thrown like a doll and dies.

    This is the most enjoyment I got from this game and I wish it had a final fight like this in the base game. I highly recommend this DLC.

    Also does anyone know why BLAEO thinks I’m missing one achievement in Costume Quest? I changed it from “20 of 21” to “21 of 21” when making the panel, but on my game list it shows I’m still missing one. Shows correctly on AStats and my steam profile.

    Costume Quest

    Costume Quest

    6/10
    12.4 hours
    21 of 21 achievements

    Centered around Halloween and costumes (duh!), this one is a small and short game from Double Fine. I went completely blind into this one and had no idea what to expect. It turned out to be a casual adventure game with turn-based combat and Double Fine writing, which to me means well written dialogue, similar to LucasArts adventure games and a slightly to very cartoonish tone.

    The story – you and your twin sister/brother are new in neighborhood and Halloween just began. You pick whether you want to play as a girl or boy, and off you go to trick or treating, but just as you are about to go your twin, dressed as a giant candy, is kidnapped by a monster. You soon find out that the neighborhood is swarmed with these monsters, plundering the houses from all the candy and serving an evil witch that also has your twin. Through the game you’ll be chasing the evil witch and clearing hub areas you’re in, such as your neighborhood. The story is serviceable and writing is ok, but more childish than other double fine games I played since you play as a kid. And I don’t use childish here as insult to writing, I just can’t express it in any other way lol.

    When you enter a combat the world transforms in , what I think is, a imaginary fight of your kids where if you wear a robot costume, you transform into a giant transformer that launches its fist like a weapon and uses a rocket barrage, wear a knight costume and you are a giant knight that can shield others and so on. Kids imaginary representation of fight instead of what really happened, them bashing monsters with candy bags or something. You meet a new friend very quickly and he joins your team, later on you meet a nerdy girl who joins you too and it’s just you three through the whole game. Some of the more interesting costumes include a unicorn, a black cat and a GIANT CRAB MADE OUT OF FRENCH FRIES. Costumes essentially serve as a class in your typical RPG and each one has an ultimate ability. A knight has a pretty decent attack but it’s ultimate gives a friendly shield that. A small variation to make combat a little more interactive is that every time you attack or get attacked you get a button prompt and if you either press it at right time or fast enough you get a bonus to your attack or defense.

    When not fighting you roam the area collecting candy’s, looting chests, doing side quests or killing patrols of monsters, but that is mostly optional. You can spend candy to buy battle stamps, which effectively are buffs you can apply to one of your teammates. These vary from straight stat boost to giving you new abilities such as stuns, applying poison etc. Not bad but nothing amazing.

    There’s not much else to say, there are also collectibles like creepy cards but I don’t think these served any purpose other than achievement hunting. You can upgrade your bag to carry more candy, which is useful as you don’t always have a shop nearby to spend it and you don’t want to waste it. You can beat the whole game in 2 hours or so it’s worth to give it a shot.

    Access Denied

    Access Denied

    6/10
    2.3 hours
    7 of 7 achievements

    Straight forward puzzle game. You need to open boxes (loot boxes?) by solving puzzles imprinted on said box. Puzzles vary from trying to balance fluids, typing in right number combination to playing sort of mini-game.

    I found difficulty odd as sometimes in middle of game I would get easy puzzle, followed by something much more harder and ending with again, pretty easy.

    Game is super short, you can beat it in less than hour, if you struggle too long with solving a puzzle you can skip to next one, but if you want 100% you need to solve them all eventually.

    It’s an easy -1 to backlog at very least and the fact it’s so short makes it more appealing to me. It’s not something I would want to spent long hours on.

    My review of the first Dishonored and it’s DLC’s is HERE

    Dishonored 2

    Dishonored 2

    8/10
    28.9 hours
    28 of 50 achievements

    Dishonored 2 is a perfect sequel. It expands on every aspect of the original and does so well without breaking anything or overwhelming you (at least for those that played previous game, like me). The areas are much bigger and full of life, civilians appear a lot more now, unlike previous game where it felt like only guards lived in the cities. There are tons of optional rooms and arenas but also keeping with last game, options to approach each mission differently. New tools, new powers and bonecharms, new enemies, new locations and lore and some returning characters.

    This time you get to choose who you play as, either Corvo from the first game or Empress Emily, Corvo’s daughter who you helped save in the first game. Continuing from the first game and it’s DLC’s, each person get’s affected by the outsider powers a little differently, e.g. Corvo and Daud in 1st game. That means Emily get’s it’s own set of unique abilities that no other character has like ability to turn into a shadow figure that can quickly assassinate someone and is very difficult to spot or ability to spawn a clone of yourself to serve as distraction. Corvo has the same abilities which makes him the boring choice for first time playthrough. But one thing that changed is that Corvo now has a voice. He was a mute character in first game but looks like devs decided to give him some more personality for this game, which will make second playthrough less boring as you’ll hear now what he thinks about current situation or character. Though I should add if you want, you can play as Corvo for the first time.

    Another choice you can make is accept The Outsider powers or not. I haven’t done this playthrough yet, but I imagine besides no powers this also makes bonecharms useless, which will make the game much harder, especially if you plan to do a stealth playthrough!

    Combat wasn’t the best element of the first game, but I have to say it feels a lot more fluid here. I’m not sure what they changed or if it’s just me still remembering how to play after first game.

    This time your hub area is a ship you use to travel around the empire, but unlike the Pub from first game, there’s no shop or upgrade guy for you. This time if you want to buy stuff or upgrade equipment you need to find Black Market’s that are on every level. Blueprints are again present and you need them to unlock new upgrades.

    You’ll see some really unique levels here. A clockwork manor that switches entire rooms with a push of a lever, time-travel shenanigans where you jump from one time to another and you can affect the future with your actions (though changing events seems to affect just one specific issue, but I guess they didn’t want to bother and predicting how things would go for the whole world :P), city divided by two factions. The devs really stepped up their game on this part. There’s a different plague going on in background again, this time it’s bloodflies and the more aggressive playstyle will result in more apartments and even entire buildings being infested with bloodflies.


    According to HowLongToBeat this game can be beaten in 12,5 hours, it took me 2x longer to beat this game because there’s so much to explore and loot in this game, you’ll spend hours just exploring. But you do get rewarded with a lots of money and blueprints you may have missed otherwise ;) It’s hard to find any complaints about this game, it also looks a lot better if you can play on high settings and runs really well even on my 660ti and FX-6350. One big complain I have is that there is a save limit. I hitted it somewhere ¾ in the game and had to replace some old saves. Quick saves and auto-saves are not affected by this.

    So yeah, overall excellent sequel, it’s not very different from the last game in terms of gameplay, but it is better. Buy it if you liked the first game, or not :P

    2019 recap and the top 5 games I played in 2019

    Well, progress this year was much worse compared to my 2018 recap…
    I beat only 17 games in 2019 vs 35 in 2018.
    The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth is largely to blame for that as I started new save, first time going through Afterbirth+ expansion and sinking a couple hundred hours more since the second half of 2019… Other than that I just couldn’t find as much time for games due to IRL stuff. I’m not sure if I’m gonna be less busy with IRL stuff but when I finally 100% Isaac then I won’t have a familiar game to come back to, meaning I’ll have to play something else :P

    Oh I also had some new year resolutions but fuck them! No more new year resolutions this time.

    This year balance:

    --- 17 games beaten

    +++ 285 games added to the backlog

    ===============

    +268

    Oops… :/

    But hey, I did play some great games this year besides Isaac, so this year wasn’t a complete waste! One of these even made it to my top 10 games of the decade!

    Five games I beated this year and enjoyed the most:

    5. The Sexy Brutale (2017) (My review)

    4. Apex Legends (2019) (My review)

    3. Dishonored (2012) (My review)

    2. RUINER (2017) (My review)

    1. Spec Ops: The Line (2012) (My review)

    And to recap my time with video games in 2010’s, here are the best ten games I played and that came out this decade!

    10. Dishonored 2



    Well, I already given my thoughts above. Dishonored 2 is one of the most fun stealthy games out there with compelling story and visuals.

    9. Grand Theft Auto V


    I have yet to play a game developed or published by Rockstar that disappointed me. GTA V is no exception, with excellent writing, more adult-focused humor and fun, open-world gameplay. Although I feel like driving and gunplay took a small step back from GTA IV, this is still such a joy to play slaughter with the cops or just cruising through the city.

    8. Amnesia: The Dark Descent



    Still one of my favorite horror games and really scary to this day, as I recently replayed it for new achievement. Lovecraftian and injects a lot of story from “The Case of Charles Dexter Ward” onto Daniel, game protagonist, and borrows a little from other mythos and stories.

    7. Spec Ops: The Line



    Solid game with some of the best use of foreshadowing in games I have seen. It begins so boring with you, Delta Force operator somewhere in middle east gunning down brown people with AK’s to end with hundreds of American marines killed by you and a twist that I didn’t see coming. Great game and the biggest surprise of this decade.

    6. The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth



    Oh boy, how could I not put BoI on this list? Even as I type this I still struggle to get the last four achievements. If there’s one game to blame for my poor progress in 2019 it’s this one. This is game is such a time sink, with it’s addicting gameplay, hundreds of different items and combinations and a unique run everytime you start a new one. Great improvement from flash version that I also sinked over 150 hours in :D

    5. S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat



    Aka. Slav simulator, CoP is the most defined entry in the series. Although it cuts off a lot of Zone from previous games, it introduces two new huge areas and some different parts of Pripyat city not seen in SoC. It’s a series divided by those that either hate or love the game. CoP also has a massive modding scene, with tons of different mods from small changed to complete overhauls.

    4. SOMA



    I did not expect it to be better than Amnesia, but I’m happy that Frictional Games proved me wrong. Moving from Amnesia old castle into SOMA’s abandoned underwater facility, SOMA is just as scary as Amnesia while also asking you moral and philosophical questions. It could be even higher on list if not for your protagonist who is a complete dumbass and sometimes so annoying you just want to yell at him to shut the fuck up.

    3. Hollow Knight



    Indie gem of the decade, the most beautiful and most challenging (after Dark Souls) game I played that I can remember. Memorable encounters, beautiful visuals and music, good controls and a huge map with mostly visual story telling makes this game one of my all time favorites. Looking forward to Silksong!

    2. Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice



    Loved almost every second of it. A story of a celtic warrior who attempts to enter Nordic Hel to get back her lost love, while constantly fighting with her psychosis. Great sound design with voices whispering constantly to your ear. I also really loved devs vision of Nordic warriors and creatures.

    1. Portal 2



    The last single player game by Valve and their greatest achievement 😊 It’s fun from start to beginning, pacing is perfect, greatly expands Aperture Science complex, GLaDOS is excellent with her sarcastic humor and a slightly different, less robotic personality, which I liked!
    And I only hope that HL: Alyx is going to make it to number one place of my future 2020’s list 😉 I have high hope in Valve that they can pull it off, but first I need to get myself a VR headset D:

    Thanks for making it to the end! And hopefuly next year I can finish my yearly recap a little faster XD

    Hello fellow backloggers,

    I would like to know your opinion on something… Recently I was thinking of including webm’s in my reviews to better show what the game is about. These would be short, raw gameplay clips, no music or effects added. I probably won’t include them for every game and a number of clips will vary, but I try to don’t go over three clips per review.

    I would upload them to something like streamable or something similar and embed them in between the lines (though I haven’t tried it yet, maybe I will be too dumb to do it lol).

    What do you think? Great idea? Or should BLAEO remain text only?

    Let me know in comments and vote here - StrawPoll

    July & August Report

    Heyo,
    Another slow month for me, Shadow of Mordor consumed a lot of my time and I still have one DLC to beat and some achievements to do. I also had 2 week vacation in August without my PC so that obviously didn’t help with the backlog 😅

    In next month I’m gonna tackle another big game - Dishonored 2 and maybe Death of the Outsider, too. After that, who knows.

    Question to those that read my reviews - should I include my favorite tracks from game OST at the beginning, so you can listen to them while reading, or not? Or it doesn’t matter, it’s not like I’m writing 30 minute reviews. :p

    And something else - what games are you most hyped right now? For me it would be a new game from Edmund McMillen, The Legend of Bum-bo and a game from studio that made The Swapper and Baba is You - Noita. A rogue-lite where every pixel is simulated and every world is procedurally generated. It looks and sounds fucking amazing and will be in EA soon, I might buy it just to support it and wait for it to leave EA.

    Braid

    Braid

    7/10
    4.2 hours
    11 of 12 achievements

    One of the old, big indie hits back in 2009, this is a platformer developed mostly by Jonathan Blow, now I guess one of the indie scene legends along with Edmund McMillen, Phil Fish and Tommy Refenes.

    A platformer with focus on time manipulation that does it in a pretty unique way (for a game, at least). You can pause, rewind and fast forward at any time and as much as you like. Though the FF can be only done to the furthest point in time you moved to.

    Each world has some kind of twist, starting with second world where time immune elements are introduced that aren’t affected by your manipulation, so for example once you open time immune door it will stay open forever, until you start the level again. It’s also the only element that shows up in other worlds, other “twists” don’t show up in worlds where they’re not introduced.

    In next world time moves only when you move and maybe I’m just easily impressed, but this is where level design really surprised me, how excellently everything is lined up and thought out. I won’t spoil next worlds.

    You could finish this game in ~30 minutes or so, just by moving to the right and finish all 5 worlds as the path is mostly straight forward and easy, except two bosses on the way, however to reach the ending you need to pick up puzzle pieces scattered through levels and this is the real goal of the game, as well where the challenge lies. The puzzles get more challenging as you go and require you to utilize time manipulation and tools you get to pick the pieces.

    The story is surprisingly good and ends with a twist. It’s about finding love, self-improvement and personal, honest reflection on yourself. It’s told mostly via little books you can read at the entrance to the world and its levels, but there’s more if you pay attention. I’m guessing it’s personal to Mr Blow, but I haven’t read on it yet to know.

    I could give it a higher rating, but in the end it’s mostly based on my personal enjoyment and there were times when I got stuck and had to use a guide to get the last puzzle pieces. And sometimes I just felt bored with the game. Maybe just a bad day…

    Favorite tracks (same video, different timestamps):
    05 - Jami Sieber – Maenam
    07 - Jami Sieber – Undercurrent
    08 - Jami Sieber - Tell It By Heart

    Middle-earth™: Shadow of Mordor™

    Middle-earth™: Shadow of Mordor™

    7/10
    39.8 hours
    63 of 74 achievements

    I was excited starting this one as I heard a lot of good things about it and it’s nemesis system, it’s also from Monolith Productions which did one of my favorite FPS-es of all time – F.E.A.R.

    Set in Middle-earth and before LoTR, this game has a very different feeling and atmosphere than the movies. It’s dark and grim for 90% of the game with some humor in some cutscenes from the uruk traitor that helps you in the game and a dwarf you meet later on, and the whole story is pretty much a revenge story on the lieutenants of Sauron and their warchiefs. There’s no Shire or innocent characters like Hobbits to contrast with the world, just your grimy ass and elfish wraith that inhabited your body.

    Not a huge spoiler since it’s at the very beginning, but you are Talion captain of Gondor defending The Black Gate where for some reason your family is also, the Gondor pretty much loses and your family, including you is murdered in some kind of ritual, performed by Black Hand who responds only to Sauron. After somehow not dying, you wake up to find you have been bound to wraith of an elf, who doesn’t remember who he is, but will help you in your mission.

    Talion is a really good fighter on his own and with wraith you can use bow like Legolas himself, interrogate people by literally reading their mind and other cool abilities you unlock later on. Melee fights are Arkham style, meaning you mostly press left button and counter the attacks with right button. The fights don’t require skill for most part, it’s very difficult to die in this game, it’s all about spectacle and making you feel like a badass, occasionally you’ll run into a warchief or even a captain who has a ridiculous set of buffs that make him hard to kill. Later in game you often will meet shield-bearers that you need to attack from behind or berserkers that can counter your front attacks. As you build your combo streak by left-clicking you can instantly execute normal uruks or deal a lot of damage to a captain, as long as they’re not immune to combat finishers. Skill trees are also present and broken into tiers, you unlock tier by gaining more “Power” and you gain that by killing captains/warchiefs and finishing side quests related to them. Skill points you get by leveling up and to do that just kill stuff and complete missions. If you want to see combat in action and how easy it is, I recommend this video by my favorite streamer, though he shits on it pretty hard, but it does look cool :p Key ability you get later on is to brand uruks and thus swaying them to your side. With branded captains and warchiefs you can command them to attack a different captain or warchief and build your own army over time.

    Game world is broken into two huge areas and boy is there stuff to do in each. Side missions that never end, lore pickups, legends to unlock ultimate’s for your weapons and challenges related to hunting and gathering herbs. Almost like a Ubisoft game, but not as bad. The first area is similar to the one in the movies, the second is a very lush and green (for a Mordor), its before Sauron is as powerful as in movies I guess and the shadow hasn’t completely killed the life around the mountain.

    Uh and about that nemesis system? I feel like once I transfer my saves to Shadow of War, I’m not going to recognize my closest ally and biggest nemesis lol. Honestly if it wasn’t for an achievement to make one normal uruk into a warchief, I wouldn’t have a strong feeling or memories of any uruks you meet. Any “normal” uruk that kills you gets automatically promoted to a captain, the achievement was to help that captain become warchief and then kill him, so I died to him a few times but he got so lucky with certain buffs as he leveled up that he actually become really powerful and difficult. None of that would have happened if I didn’t set that up. Like I mentioned, it’s pretty difficult to die in this game and thus create any kind of “relationship” with a captain or warchief. Sure, I died a few times and the captains mocked me for that which is cool, if they manage to run or somehow survive your attack they call you out on that. I guess when it came out it made a really good impression on people, but to me after seeing it on YT before and playing so late maybe I expected it to be little more than that?

    The biggest fuck up of this game is the final boss. It’s just a quick time event. Yep. That’s all you get after +30 hours of gameplay.

    To summarize, don’t expect a difficult game and I think you’ll enjoy the game. Executions are always fun to watch and combat is easy to learn and it’s easy to turn yourself into a killing machine. Mordor is pretty well recreated, soundtrack is ok but nowhere near good as Howard Shore OST for LoTR.
    Favorite tracks:
    01 – The Gravewalker
    06 – Ioreth
    09 - Family Killings / Banished From Deaths
    44 – The Black Hand’s Gift

    Middle-earth™: Shadow of Mordor™ - Lord of the Hunt DLC

    Middle-earth™: Shadow of Mordor™ - Lord of the Hunt DLC

    7/10
    4 hours
    12 of 13 achievements

    Remember the dwarf I mentioned in my review of the base game? Well his name is Torvin and you will help him stop a group of beastmaster warchiefs that are trying to tame some of the most dangerous beasts in Mordor for Sauron’s army and overall cause mayhem to the Mordor’s ecosystem by burning land and chasing beasts. It takes place only in the second, greenly area.

    It’s pretty much more of the same, with some new beasts and skills for you to use. A new breed of Caragors for you to ride and a new Graug that can spit toxic poison. You also can finally brand Ghuls.

    Warchiefs in this DLC are not randomized AFAIK, not sure about their bodyguards, so don’t expect some weird combinations. The last warchief is pretty hard and different from most you’ll see in this DLC or base game, so that’s nice.

    This DLC also comes with superb skin that makes Talion look a little like Khal Drogo. I imagine most people who already own it or will buy it, have GOTY edition, but if you don’t, wait for a discount, it’s an ok DLC but not worth the 10€ they ask for.

    Secrets of Rætikon

    Secrets of Rætikon

    5/10
    6.8 hours
    19 of 19 achievements

    Another short game, this one is a rather boring 2d bird adventure.

    You’re dropped right into the world and after short tutorial where you learn how to move etc. and how to get the objects that unlock the ending, you’re free to move between the worlds and explore. The objective is to unlock 7 or so seals that unlock some kind of machinery in the middle of forest and do…something? Blood sacrifice ?

    I have never played 2d game where you control a bird, so I have nothing to compare it to, but controls were ok, you can move in any direction, dive, flap your wings to speed up. I have never felt like I was held back in any way by the controls. The birdy you control has some strength as you can pick any object, including moving huge boulders if you flap your wings hard enough or root out small trees for health.

    Besides you the forest is a pretty lively place, other birds and mammals are around like squirrels, magpies, lynxes, jackdaws, buzzards etc. Magpies and squirrels are not gonna bother you unless you carry one of the seal breakers which are black-gold, they’ll try to steal it from you. Buzzards and lynxes are aggressive and will try to hunt you, you can kill them by using the environment to make them jump/fly into spiky bushes or use a spiky branch to hit them. But you can also finish the whole game without killing any animal.

    So that’s the game pretty much, get all the pieces and you win. It gets boring pretty quickly and at time very annoying when you have to fight with magpies for the items. The story is very barebones, there’s more hidden in tablets scattered in the world, but all of them are in foreign alphabet. You can find individual letters to decode the messages. However, finding individual pieces or even whole alphabet is not going to automatically translate the texts. You’re only given letters side by side and have to translate them on your own, have fun with that… Maybe if the game was more fun and got me interested in the world, I would have do that…

    It’s pretty difficult to die, unless you try to do dumb achievements like me. And it’s short, so if you don’t care about 100% it’s an easy -1 to the backlog.

    Favorite tracks:
    02 – Canyon
    06 – Deep Forest Hunting
    07 - Isadoras Lair

    May & June Report

    Heyo,

    Well, this has been pretty horrible 2 months when it comes to beating my backlog 😬 During Steam Spring cleaning event I made a huge mistake… I started playing The Binding of Isaac again! All because Steam told me so. Well I only had to launch it but I decided to play one run but it didn’t stopped there…

    This game is such a time sucker and so addicting I added another 100 hours of playtime in a month and week or two! I decided I might as well stick to it and 100% before the new and hopefully the last expansion (this time for real, please Edmund?) comes out sometime in december…

    For this month I plan to play and beat at least four games to make up for the last two… Hopefully I can make it as I’m leaving for two weeks in August and ain’t gonna have access to my games.

    Here are few games I played before Isaac sucked me in.
    Careful as my screenshots from Sakura Nova are NSFW (+18 patch)

    Sakura Nova

    Sakura Nova

    3/10
    2.9 hours
    15 of 15 achievements

    At this point everyone should know what Sakura games are about, right?

    Sakura Nova is yet another dumb VN from Winged Cloud where you, the young, handsome guy has to deal with pretty and horny girls that want to have sex with you.

    This one is set in some kind of medieval fantasy, you live in a beautiful, white walled city guarded by an elite force of something that you really want to join.

    And it just happens that you two classmates are hot babes with huge boobs and skimpy outfits that serve as their armor. Your teacher also has one of those and also is a hot babe, but she has an eyepatch which makes her a badass, wow!

    Yeah this one is as dumb as the rest. Later on you train in school dungeons filled with monsters and girls always manage themselves to get caught and raped by tentacles. You save them, they start to like you and want to have sex with you. At one point out of blue the girl just says “Let’s have sex here!” and that’s exactly what happens.

    I played with +18 patch and I really can’t understand what people see in those games? The uncensored art is pretty good I guess, but staring at it for 5 minutes while reading what noises characters make gets boring really fast. The writing is really bad, the characters are shallow, story is very simplistic, I think I saw better hentai’s than what’s shown in this. People really get off to this? I guess there is a specific demographic that is into this stuff, in this specific game your character is a dude who dual-wields katanas or something lol. The only thing that’s missing is a fedora on his head.

    But hey, the cards are worth something. I got A LOT of these Sakura games in a very cheap bundle, I probably should get rest of them for next steam sale.

    The Sexy Brutale

    The Sexy Brutale

    +7/10
    9.8 hours
    18 of 18 achievements

    Stuck in a beautiful mansion on an exquisite party, you have to rescue your friends from staff conspiring to kill you all. However, you have an ability to reset the day and try as many times as you want in case you fail. But, you also cannot be seen by anyone, your friends or the staff. So you have to be a little helpful ghost that spies and plans how to save everybody without interacting with them.

    That’s the whole game and I think it was executed pretty well. Each character has it’s own unique personality and outfit and you have to learn their daily routine, what or who kills them and how to stop it. The mansion is huge and pretty diverse and beside saving people you have to find out how exactly all of this started and why are you stuck in here. It’s fun and interesting as you progress until the very ending which is, well, pretty disappointing.

    You don’t get to choose who you save first and as you save people you unlock some of their abilities that let’s you access areas or containers previously unreachable. There are also collectibles to find and some are hard to find and can only be found at specific hour.

    It could be an 8/10 game for me but unfortunately despite having above minimum requirements I would often get FPS drops below 30fps, sometimes even single digit FPS :| That’s just unacceptable for me, especially since the game doesn’t look that good. Maybe it could be fixed if the game offered proper video options menu, instead all you can do is change resolution and pick windowed/borderless.

    Lastly OST, which is amazing. A mix of Jazz, classical and…electro-swing, which in this game sounds pretty good?! That’s a first time I can say that, as everything else I heard from that genre is just fucking horrible.

    Favorite tracks:
    The Sexy Brutale Theme
    Tequila At Noon
    Shattered Hope (Tequila's Theme)

    Shower With Your Dad Simulator 2015: Do You Still Shower With Your Dad

    Shower With Your Dad Simulator 2015: Do You Still Shower With Your Dad

    5/10
    3.1 hours
    18 of 22 achievements

    Meme game.

    Well I only launched this during Steam Spring Cleaning event to complete a task and it gave me an achievement for launching this game… And since I didn’t liked the idea of leaving this with just one achievement completed, I kept playing.

    It’s a dumb game where you choose one of the three kids, white kid, black kid or Australian kid? Anyway after that you have to travel to a dad that matches your skin color and that’s most of the game lol. There are few secret modes you can unlock, like a flappy bird mode where you are in a bath tube and have to rescue your dad(s), a detective game with dad with no pants and a broken shower and a copy of frog fractions but with dad’s to catch. It’s dumb and between game modes you get to read dad jokes.

    I’ll give them that this game has a lot more content than I expected. I play it now for achievements but I keep unlocking new stuff O_O Most people will probably turn it off after 15 minutes, but there’s quite a lot of different pick-ups you can unlock. Also every time you go to wrong dad you get a big red text “WRONG DAD” and this keeps making me chuckle every time this happens for whatever reason.

    Achievement hunters just be aware that this game might have some achievements that are impossible to unlock…I did some reading and I’m not entirely sure, as some people seem to find solutions but they don’t seem to work for everybody, so be careful with this one. Might want to delete this if you grabbed it just because it was cheap and you have no interest in this game.

    April Report

    Heyo,

    Here I am 1/3rd of May behind us with my April report! :D
    I didn’t started Ancestors Legacy yet as I had planned last month. I may have to shelve it for another month as I will probably start Distant World: Universe. It’s gonna be my first 4x game, I hope it will be good :X

    Soon I’m gonna start Borderlands 2. I keep hearing it’s better in almost every way than the first game, which is ok in co-op and you can read my review of it below.

    Oh and one Sakura game just after I find +18 patch since I imagine that’s the way its meant to be played :V It’s one of my current PoP games and I might as well do this one since it’s short.

    Borderlands GOTY Enhanced

    Borderlands GOTY Enhanced

    6/10 Solo, 7/10 in co-op
    36.8 hours
    63 of 80 achievements

    Everyone is playing this right now so I decided to jump the train too. I played like 90% of base game with a friend.
    FPS Loot-shooter with millions of randomized guns, four different characters to choose from that each have different abilities and personalities, a dull set of bosses, a world filled with pop culture references and Claptraps is how I would summarize this game.

    For an FPS, the gunplay is pretty weak. Even strongest weapons feel weak, lack any sort of kick to them and are overall pretty boring to shoot. Explosions from grenades and rocket launchers are laughable, revolvers feel more like standard pistols and combat rifles are meh. Shotguns sound pretty good and are fun to shoot, at least they didn’t messed that up. Each weapons is randomized (with few exceptions) and not just their stats but their looks and parts. You can get sniper rifles with revolver cylinders and instead of bolt-action to remove shells, it has pump like a shotgun. Or a pistol with a bayonet and huge scope. Neat

    Weapons can have elemental damage – Shock, fire, toxic, blast. Shock does a lot of damage to shields, but I found it pretty useless beyond that, most enemies have a lot of health and pretty weak shields. Fire does dmg over time and is probably the most useful overall from all four, but there are some enemies that are completely immune to it. Toxic works like fire with less dmg but can spread and ignores armor. Blast seems to ignore most of armor but then I can’t remember any armored enemies except skags (pandora dogos) in base game. But it does leave a nice red mess and gibs if you kill someone with it :P

    Storyline is ok I guess, although I didn’t bothered to read quest descriptions or written dialogue as in game like this and you really don’t have to. The story is easy to follow and understand if you just listen to what characters say in cutscenes or radio. You’re on Pandora, looking for vault that opens every 200 years and you just happen to be right on time! :p

    You can spawn vehicles pretty early on with mounted gun, but once you get fast travel they become obsolete pretty fast.

    I wouldn’t recommend playing this in solo. While it can be pretty enjoyable and easy to let the game flow with its repetitiveness, there are just better games to play. It’s a pretty basic FPS with some basic and mostly boring talent trees. And the boss battles…oh dear…

    The “Bosses” in this game are mostly just tougher enemies with big health and slightly different models. I can recount only two unique looking bosses, each part of storyline quests. Any mechanics are either bare bones or non-existent. I honestly expected a lot more. You mostly just stand still and shoot them and that’s it. Hide every now and then to regen your shield. Repeat. Even the last boss, the supposed guardian of Vault is a joke, there are tentacles you have to shoot that pop up every now and then and that’s it lol. Maybe it’s not a very fair comparison but even the most basic bosses in WoW in low level dungeons had more depth to them than any BL1 boss 🙄

    Lots of pop culture references are present, from movies, tv shows, some games too, probably a hundreds more I missed or didn’t knew. I can just imagine Randy’s Pitchford happy baby face laughing after seeing every single one and saying “oh that’s from that movie/comic/game haha!” as he forces his employees to add even more.

    I completed two playthrough as Roland (Soldier class) and if I can give you some advice, pick either Brick or Lilith, they’re much more fun from what I can tell during my short playthrough with them. Roland’s ultimate is that he can spawn Scorpio turret, which is pretty useful but it disappears after a short time and cooldown on this thing is very long one. Each class has three sets of talent tree and to reduce turret cooldown you have to get at least to level 20…His other talents aren’t that great either, mostly it’s just bonus to dmg, bonus to turret damage, regen bonus etc. Boring stuff. Brick’s ultimate is by far my favorite, you go into berserk mode and do absurd amounts of damage with your fists, it was really fun.

    OST – I played most of game with low volume due to playing with my friend and he has a pretty quiet mic so I didn’t really had a good listen. Wasn’t anything worth sharing from what I could hear during my short solo playthroughs.

    The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned

    The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned

    5/10
    5 hours
    5 of 5 achievements

    Zombie DLC, yaaay…

    A new area filled with zombies, midget zombies, thriller outfit wearing zombies etc. Out of two DLCs I played so far this is the worst one. It takes place on an island (Dead Island hahaha…) where the less successful brother of Dr. Zed, Dr. Ned failed an experiment and infected everybody and by that messed the business of Jakobs corporation for whom he worked for. So now it’s up to you to get him and maybe find a cure.

    It’s just most of the same. Some areas are literally copy-pasted from base game with slightly different textures and rubbish.

    The last boss fight takes place in a huge and open cave, but the boss got stuck for me in the entrance so I just stood in place with my turret and killed him.

    If you don’t care about achievements, skip this one.

    The Secret Armory of General Knoxx

    The Secret Armory of General Knoxx

    6/10
    10 hours
    8 of 10 achievements

    Could be a 7/10, but for a lack of fast travel, which this DLC could really use, I have to lower this by one for wasting player’s time.

    In this one you get new vehicles to travel and the new areas are huge. Long highways but just straight forward highways and big open areas with huge bugs popping out of sand. There’s a lot of new quests here compared to Island of Dr. Ned, some of them are secret and they don’t show on minimap.

    There’s no fast travel because the devs wanted you to travel with new vehicle and that’s an issue to me. The hub area is where you will return most of completed quests, but often the quests to do are on one of the ends of map and traveling one way from hub to objective can take even 10 minutes. And on the road there’s usually nothing but some enemies that you can ignore. It’s always faster to just leave the game after completing the quest and re-making the lobby as you just spawn back in hub area. Traveling is just a huge time-waster in this game. It’s the worst at the beginning when on one of the highways there’s a huge blockade and you had to travel on foot quite a distance too.

    The last boss, General Knoxx, is a bit better than anything I saw in base game, but with two people it’s still very easy. Some mobs and medics spawn to help him, but once you kill them you can stun lock Knoxx by just doing headshots.

    Overall ok DLC and a lot more interesting than zombie island, but the repeated boring travels between areas makes it 6/10 for me instead of 7.

    Castle Crashers

    Castle Crashers

    6/10
    11.9 hours
    7 of 12 achievements

    Played solo.

    Cute little action adventure game in 2D. Although the game recommend controller to play, I didn’t had any problems completing the game on keyboard.

    Not really sure what to say about this one. Pretty simple hack’n’slash with different melee combos and magic system. Magic depends on the knight you pick at start, I chosen poison knight and his magic does dmg over time.

    Tons of stuff to unlock in base game and Insane mode (NG+). You start with 4 knights but can have like over 50 from what I saw. Different weapons, over dozen of pet companions, the game definitely encourages replaying.

    It’s easy to pick up and play, the combat is easy to learn and you can use different melee or magic combos to deal with enemies. It’s pretty well balanced in solo as I rarely had to go back to previous areas to level up, I was on par with most enemies through the whole game. There are four stats that you can level, Strength just boost your damage with melee, Magic does the same for spells and unlocks new combos, Defense boosts HP and Agility your running speed, how fast you fire your bow and how much damage it does. I mostly just leveled up Magic and STR with some defense every now and then and did fine.

    You also have companion pets that give you bonuses or help you in different ways. Like with everything else there is a ton of pets to find and unlock.

    Almost every boss encounters is unique and fun. Borderlands 1 could use those 😂 At one point you even have to play beach volleyball against enemies to beat the level, but that was a pain in the ass in solo.

    Since I played this solo I missed on the chaos that is co-op, I watched some LP’s and sometimes it’s difficult what is going on. I can imagine it’s even worse if you pick one of the unlocked knights that look exactly like one of enemies. Also the XP is gained by doing dmg and in co-op this is obviously going to spread among your team, so you’ll deal less damage on your own and actually gonna have to try work together somehow in this chaos :D

    It can also be a little boring on your own after playing for a while. It’s ok on it’s own but I can imagine it’s a lot better with friend/s, so I would recommend playing it with at least one friend.

    Story is very simple, evil wizard stole a magic crystal from your king and a few of his princesses and you have to rescue them and defeat the wizard and his lieutenants.

    Favorite tracks:
    07 – War Machine
    08 – Factory
    15 – Dark Skies

    March report

    Heyo,
    Here I am again late with another report, but at least I’m not the only one looking at posts below :D

    This month I played four games and written a review I’ve been playing before march. But I’m not done with Apex Legends and I also started the new Enhanced edition of first Borderlands game and so far it’s pretty fun, played most of it with friend. Single player is ok-ish but I can’t see myself completing the whole game and all expansions alone. Right now I’m lvl 34 Soldier or Brigader? I forgot what’s it called in game.

    Probably gonna start Ancestor’s Legacy this month, which I bought physical copy of with OST included because it was really cheap on local store.

    After that at least one PoP game and then we’ll see.

    Anyway here are the reviews - if you stalk my profile for w/e reason, I took some hours off Broken Age and Refunct since I had some hours of idle long time ago and AFK’ed a lot with Broken Age.

    Refunct

    Refunct

    5/10
    1.0 hours
    10 of 10 achievements

    Literally a 10-minute first-person-perspective platformer. Tho you can beat it under 4 minutes if you rush it up and know the way.

    You jump on platformers and paint them, reach the glowing red button and press it, more platforms spawn with another button, repeat until you reach golden button and boom, game finished. There’s some cubes to collect for achievements.

    It’s a pretty easy game to beat, but I found it pretty boring when I replayed it for achievement. It’s cheap, but I would argue it could be a dollar and euro cheaper. It’s bare bones and short, but it works I guess. Regardless give it a shot if you own it, it’s a quick -1 for your backlog :P

    A Story About My Uncle

    A Story About My Uncle

    6/10
    14.4 hours
    15 of 15 achievements

    Another FPS platformer, this one has some story and gameplay going on.

    The story is mostly told and narrated through the protagonist who tells it his daughter as a nighty nighty tale. As a title suggests, it’s a story about protagonists uncle, who as a child, one day visiting his uncle finds him missing and after wandering the house, trying on a sort space/aquatic suit that was made for him, finds a jump pad that literally sends him on a different planet.

    The suit you found gives you a power to jump really high or very far if you sprint, but shortly after starting you find a crystal that let’s you attach and pull yourself to the surface, which you will do most of time to move around. There’s a limit to how many times you can use pull in air, each crystal gives you one more use and you find two more, three pulls in total. To reset it you have to touch the ground and you’re free to glide. Later on you’ll get rocket boots that give you a little boost in some places.

    Gliding through air is hmm, pleasant? That’s perhaps the best description I can give, you still have some control in air, you can fully stop in mid air and fall down and use your mouse and movement keys to maneuver in air. But personally to me it feels a little sluggish, if you ever bunny hoped in something Half-life or played old FPS-es you know how fast you can move in those games, the ASAMU feels slow compared to these games. Even running in a modern game like Apex Legends feels faster than flying in ASAMU.

    What this game really does well is a sense of scale. The levels are HUGE and it’s impressive it runs so well and you only have few loading screens through the whole game.

    The game feels a little bit unfinished at some places. Remember how you reset your pull ability by landing on ground? There’s a speedrun achievement and some later levels have quite a few places where you’re not supposed to land, especially the last one where you move above the supposed path and skip some parts. It didn’t feel like an intended way at all. But it’s the fastest way and pretty much every guide used these spots.
    You will meet some creatures on your way and the animations are horrible through most of game, I found some creatures that are literally frozen in a pose. I guess they couldn’t afford good animator.

    But it’s still a pleasant game if you play just once and forget about it. The narrator has a nice voice, the game is easy and has nice looking environments, a lot of checkpoints, ok OST and is easy to learn.

    Favorite tracks:
    03 – Sanctuary
    06 – Welcome Home
    09 – The Wishing Stones

    Broken Age

    Broken Age

    -6/10
    15.7 hours
    45 of 45 achievements

    A 2014 adventure from Double Fine.

    I don’t have much to say here other than if you played any other adventure game like Grim Fandango you already know how it plays. Lots of dialogue, try clicking on everything and everyone if you’re stuck. Game has 3 Acts and Act 1 and 3 are pretty easy and not filled with adventure game bullshit where solutions to puzzles make no sense or feel random.

    Act 2 is the longest one and the one I had to use guide as there’s so much to do at once and I admit maybe I wasn’t paying my full attention during some dialogue, so I made it harder for myself.

    A unique aspect of this game is that you have two protagonists that you can switch between at will. I really liked it as if I felt like I got stuck, I could just switch and progress with other character.

    Everything looks hand-drawn and it’s really beautiful. Voice acting is great too, one of the protagonists is actually voiced by Frodo (Elijah Wood) which was a surprise to me. OST is excellent too. Pretty much every audio-visual aspect of this game is great.
    This game lacks interesting and/or funny characters. Grim Fandango was much better in that regard, I really liked Manny and others he interacted with.

    Favorite tracks:
    Good OST overall but I didn’t felt like going through it and picking my favorites or the one that caught my attention this time, sorry.

    RUINER

    RUINER

    +8/10
    10.6 hours
    17 of 33 achievements

    This could easily be 8/10 and frankly it soon might be for me when I start NG+.

    A debut game from Reikon Games, RUINER is stylish and brutal game set in a not very original, but a beautifully made dark cyberpunk setting very heavily inspired by Blade Runner when it comes to looks and tone.

    A top-down shooter, RUINER is pretty challenging game that throws waves on enemies on each arenas as you progress through the level. You are equipped with a full-auto gun with unlimited ammo and a pipe as a sidearm, but you can get better weapons from every enemy you kill although they have limited ammo on them. You also find better weapons lying down between arenas and inside weapon caches that you unlock doing a really easy mini-game. Each weapon is more or less unique, you’ll get a flamethrower, minigun, a shotgun where each pellet explodes on impact, a gun that shoots balls of lightning as well as some standard weapons like SMG’s that only differ in rate of fire etc. Melee weapons other that your pipe are also present but from what I noticed most of them only differ in looks and damage done. But frankly melee weapons aren’t the focus of this game, you will be using firearms through most of the game.

    Fighting is fast and challenging and later on it got reaaaally fun after I got some decent skills and got used to controls, which could use a little improvement on K+M. You will have to dash constantly and be aware of what’s going on constantly.

    Talent trees are present and most of them give you active abilities with a little video clip attached showing you what exactly it does. I could see starting game with different builds but I can’t imagine that a lot of them would be very good, at least on hard difficulty which is what I played on. Especially that one tree that gives boost to melee weapons, since every melee breaks except your pipe break and enemies pretty early in the game can dash to avoid your attacks. There are also passive skills that just boost your health, damage done with weapons etc. Pretty basic and boring, but kinda essential.

    Between every story level you get to hang around in the city which is basically a hub area. And ehh it really lacks a purpose in this game. There’s almost nothing to do except a quest for one character which give’s you some extra chests to open in next level, it’s pretty climatic city with great background music, but the game could really do it without it.

    Story is kinda predictable and not that great, but through the whole story you stay in contact with “Her” and she tells you about the locations you visit as well as motivates you and she really likes to use Japanese emojis. She’s also the only person that is friendly towards you in the game and you’re her puppy 🐶

    But the OST is so fucking good. I had trouble picking just few tracks from it, most of it is so good I really recommend giving a full listen to those tracks I picked below, maybe that will encourage you to give this game a try :D But note for future, don’t buy the OST on steam as it doesn’t contain all tracks ,it’s untagged and comes in WAV (but IMO that’s still better than selling MP3…).

    Visually game is gorgeous, a heavy use of dark industrial areas combined with dark red and sometimes pale white light makes for a beautiful spectacle through levels. I had to play on minimal settings but it still looked beautiful.

    Boss fights – mixed feelings. Some of them are well designed and have different phases and moves you can learn and counter them. Others just feel like really buffed version of standard enemies you encounter.

    I was surprised to find out it was this their first game and it’s made in my home country Poland. According to their site this studio was started by veterans who worked on all 3 Witchers, Dying Light and Dead Island. I’m really looking forward to their next games.
    I will soon start my second playthrough on NG+ and as I said it might turn to 8/10 for me, I really started to love this game somewhere in the middle. A lot of you probably own it from Humble monthly like me so give it a try! :D

    Favorite tracks:
    01 - Sidewalks and Skeletons - Memory - (start)
    12 - Zamilska - Duel 35
    17 - Sidewalks and Skeletons – Drifter
    18 - Zamilska - Smash
    19 - Zamilska- Army
    25 - Sidewalks and Skeletons – Disappear
    26 - Sidewalks and Skeletons - The End

    Apex Legends

    Apex Legends

    8/10
    73 hours
    no achievements

    After playing some BR’s like PUBG, Realm Royale, CS:GO Danger Zone and Fortnite, I can say this is easily the best Battle Royale on the market right now.

    For most part it’s a standard BR, jump from ship, land, loot, kill people. But you get to choose one of nine characters that each have one passive skill, one active and one ultimate ability. Though 3 of them are behind a paywall, you can still unlock them for free if you grind levels and get enough of the free currency.

    Personal favorites of mine are Bloodhound, Bangalore and latest addition, Octane. Bloodhound is tracker that can see tracks, which in game translates as showing you little icons of footsteps, opened doors etc. and the more red they are, the fresher they are. It’s pretty easy after some playing to tell the time when they were left there. Active ability scans area around you and shows a snapshot of any enemy in area and its ultimate boosts your speed and turns your vision black&white but enemies are colored red, making it very easy to spot them, combine this with Bangalore smoke grenade and you can see enemies through smoke while they can’t (unless they have their own Bloodhound :P).

    Bangalore’s passive gives her a speed boost when an enemy is shooting in her direction, can use aforementioned smoke grenades that cover quite a lot of ground and her ultimate calls an airstrike that drops bombs with delayed trigger that cover a huge area, but you have time to either hide or minimize the damage with proper positioning.

    And added just recently Octane, who look’s A LOT like a Borderlands character, is speed junkie with passive health regeneration and can give himself a speed boost with injection that also slightly damages him, but obviously your passive mitigates it. Though that active ability has no cooldown and you could potentially kill yourself with it, but I’m not sure if that’s possible lol. His ultimate has a pretty low cooldown and he throws a jump-pad that anyone can use, it allows you to either travel a little faster with long jump or get to higher ground.

    Each character has a unique personality and look that reflects that. I really like the design of all the character Respawn made. E.g. from my favorite trio, Bloodhound is a gas masked hunter with a pet raven and some kind of pagan religion centered around hunting. Bangalore is ex-military with typical military jargon and she often comments about gun's and their strengths when you ping them on ground. Octane is Spanish(?) junkie that rocks that Borderlands Psycho look and constantly wants more action. None of the BR’s I played had characters like that, usually it’s just a blank that you can decorate with cosmetics.

    There were some triggered alt-righters and “””gamers””” because of course only one of the characters is a white male and apparently Bloodhound is non-binary and Gibraltar, a different character is gay. This of course triggered the fuck out of these people. But it’s nowhere written on official site nor said in the game. Frankly I couldn’t tell you what gender or what sexual preferences each character has from their dialogue or behavior. It was confirmed in an interview with a dev but that’s all. The in-game characters are not preachy or bragging in any way, as I said before I couldn’t tell you who they fuck.

    No vehicles in this one, but through the whole map there balloons with ziplines that you can use to zip into air and then land whenever you want. There’s a lot of ziplines in towns and cliffsides that let you travel fast. Pathfinder can spawn a temporary zipline for his teammates, Octane jump-pads and Wraith can spawn a portal that works both ways. Each of these spawned abilities can be used by your enemies too though.

    Cosmetics and loot boxes are present, but for an EA published game it’s not that bad. Everything can be unlocked with free currency for leveling up, loot boxes actually have drop chances written on shop and you get free one each lvl up to like level 20, after that it’s every few levels. Most of it is cosmetics, only 3 characters are blocked from start but as I said you can unlock them too with grind. But apparently EA had zero influence over this game. And considering it’s F2P and like 90% of content is available from get-go (not counting cosmetics) it’s really not bad :)

    Lots of different guns to shot, SMG’s, AR’s, pistols, shotguns, snipers, LMG’s. Each can be equipped with modifications you find in the world, some weapons have special attachment called hop-up that give it a buff or change how they behave e.g. Havoc is a gun that needs 2-3 spin time to shoot, a legendary version of hop-up makes shooting instant.

    Right now you can only play in 3-team squads, which is my biggest gripe with Apex. Premade squad or with randoms. You don’t have to talk to them ofc and you can use built in ping system that works pretty great and we use it even when we play on discord. You have different pings for loot, enemies, places to go, with proper key binds you can use it at ease.

    And the game just works. It worked from the get-go unlike PUBG with took years to fix. Netcode in this one is great, I can get stable 60fps @1080p on 660Ti and FX-6350. Though I have to set most of things to minimum to keep it at 60fps on all situations, but I don’t mind considering it’s a fresh game.

    And oh wow, OST is pretty great too, although it’s pretty short.

    Favorite tracks:
    It’s super short, so I’m gonna leave all of it

    February monthly report

    Heyo,

    This was a little better month than last as I had more time to play this month. I played two amazing games and 100% them, with Spec Ops: The Line being a really exceptional little game. I have to thank Wintermute for picking those two for my PoP challenge :)

    Not really sure how the next month is gonna look like when it comes to games. I’m soon gonna play “A Story about my uncle” and after that, not sure.

    Anyways good luck to everybody with their backlog and have a great month!

    Spec Ops: The Line

    Spec Ops: The Line

    9/10
    14.4 hours
    50 of 50 achievements

    Oh boi, I did not expected this to be so good.

    A 2012 TPP shooter with an ok gameplay that tells the story about horrors of war better than any game I played or even better than some movies I saw (tho I obviously haven’t played all games or watched all war movies :P)

    Set in deserted Dubai city that is almost entirely covered in sand after massive sand-storms and abandoned by rest of the world, you are a leader of 3-man Delta Force squad sent in to investigate and search for survivors after a short radio signal makes it through the storm from the commander of US Army battalion that despite orders stayed in the city to try help and evacuate civilians left there. After arriving you find out that there are still people alive in Dubai and 33rd battalion is still alive and they are at war with local insurgents. After trying to contact 33rd things go south really fast among all the distrust and lack of communication and you find yourself fighting against battalion you were supposed to find and save.
    It’s pretty clear, if you read that one, that in some way Spec Ops: The Line was inspired by Joseph Konrad’s “Heart of Darkness”, one of the key characters is even named John Konrad, as to make it a little obvious. You will see some fucked up action, you won’t entirely know what is going on and who to trust until very end, you will make choices that may make you uncomfortable, and only adding fuel to fire, even if that choice seemed good and reasonable in the beginning. And all of it in a video game form and done really, really well. This is what makes this game special. At one point game mocks the player and other video games (and other media) perception of being hero through mass killings and doing pretty much horrible stuff. Of course it’s probably not the first one to do so and not the last. Your character over time develops a PTSD disorder and you start hearing and seeing stuff. It also leaves a mark on your squad mates. One of your comrades who throws jokes at beginning and tries to keep mood light quickly turns into a different person over time, for example.

    OST – there’s none! Every piece of music you hear is some other artist’s/band piece. There’s Deep Purple, Jimi Hendrix, Nine inch Nails and some others I don’t know. And every piece used fits perfectly into the actual stuff that happens on screen.

    Gameplay is perhaps the weakest part of the game, but it’s still ok on it’s own. You will mostly gun down opponents from behind the cover and occasionally throwing a grenade or flash. There’s a variety of weapons and most of them have some kind of alternative fire or modification. Each gun handles a little bit differently and has different stats. M4A1 is solid overall and you can attach silencer to it. AK47 has a huge recoil and you can switch between burst fire or full auto. SCAR does good dmg and handles well and has grenade launcher attached. Sometimes you’ll be given an option to pick up an RPG or grenade launcher. I played on “Suicidal mission” difficulty (Hard) and I liked it for most part, enemies aren’t that bullet spongy and headshots still one-kill them, so if you’re good enough it’s pretty easy to fight them back. But you die pretty quickly too if get caught outside cover or flanked. There’s some variety between enemies but for most part you just fight soldiers with AR and smg’s. Shotguners will try to get close. Sometimes they’ll throw a grenade at you and if it lands close you gotta run to other cover. Only twice in a game you’ll be attacked by a soldier with a knife who rushes you and will one shot kill you with a knife. Occasionally a big, armored in bomb suit, guy will show up with an M249 SAW or AA-12 auto shotgun and it takes few grenades or a lot of ammo to kill him and he will slowly come to you. Snipers pop up too and they can almost one shot you on Hard difficulty.

    Sometimes the enemies won’t die straight out but instead lay on ground bleeding out or slowly crawling out. They will die and you can finish them or execute them. Executions are brutal, but rewarding as they give you extra ammo and sometimes grenades. This is a really weird choice imo as for most game you will be finishing US soldiers that are supposed to be your allies and giving extra ammo encourages executions. You can of course let them die slowly or finish with a bullet, but you don’t get any ammo for that and it can be scarce at times.

    Overall sound design is excellent. Voice actors did a great job and weapons sound really great and everything else too.
    I really enjoyed this one and it’s a game I won’t forget quickly. It’s disturbing, mature and fair on hard difficulty. It makes me a little sad to see that the devs of this one decided to work on F2P multiplayer games, their next one in works right now is an MMO FPS, ugh :(

    Favorite tracks used in game:
    Deep Purple – Hush
    The Black Angels - Bad Vibrations
    Mogwai - Glasgow Mega-Snake

    Dishonored

    Dishonored

    8/10
    57.4 hours
    80 of 80 achievements

    Another great game played and completed this month :) I was quite hyped about this one back in 2012 but didn’t had any spare cash to get it. Viktor Antonov who designed the look of Combine architecture in Half-life 2 was also responsible for some of the design in this game and it shows. The little cars on rails in Dishonored look like a miniature Combine APC from HL2. Walls and guard towers are strikingly similar to those in HL2 as well.

    Dishonored for those few that don’t know is an FPS that can be played in full stealth through the whole without killing anyone, or played as a shooter with a pistol in one hand and a sword in other and going on rampage every mission.

    Story is set in a fictional empire where you are Corvo, Lord Protector of the Empress and the day you return from a mission to meet the Empress, she gets assassinated in front of your eyes and her daughter and only heir is kidnapped. You are falsely accused of murdering her by Royal Spymaster and High Overseer and thus thrown in prison and sentenced to death. Not everyone believes you did tho and soon you escape the prison with the help from conspirators that want to overthrow Royal Spymaster, now called Lord Regent, and return the throne to the rightful heir.
    Through the whole game you work in conspiracy to overthrow Lord Regent and his wealthy supporters and lieutenants, whether you straight out murder them or dispose them in some other way is up to you :)

    There’s one more party involved in all of this and it’s the Outsider, a more or less a godly figure that leaves his mark on your hand and gives you access to some of his powers. At start you are given Blink, which is basically a short range teleport. To unlock more or upgrade powers you need to find Runes which are scattered on each mission. There are active and passive powers available. Most useful I found are upgraded blink and a passive that let’s you jump much higher, opening a lot of paths. You can also posses small animals or people, summon a swarm of rats or get adrenaline up each time you kill and gaining a short time bloodlust with gruesome finishers. There are also bone charms which give you small, passive boosts, like more health or mana, faster sword swinging, less damage taken from falls etc.

    But if you like you can completely ignore those super-natural powers or combine them with technology and just use your sword and different tools – grenades, mines, pistol, crossbow. You can upgrade all of them as well or unlock new variants via blueprints that you can find on missions.
    Level design is excellent, every level offers multiple ways to enter the building or get close to the target. There are moments in the game where you are thrown into a linear path but it doesn’t happen often. I really have no bad things to say here.

    Combat is ok but it’s not recommended you get in a fight with a lot of enemies, it’s pretty easy to die if you get swarmed and attacked both from melee and range at the same time. If you time a block with your sword your enemy will stagger and you can kill them with a finisher. Killing enemies in stealth also guarantees a cool looking finisher.

    I should probably mention that there’s a plague spreading through the city that is carried by rats and your playstyle will affect it, and it’s represented by “Chaos” level. The more people you kill directly or indirectly, the more rats and infected people (weepers) will show up. Or so does the game tells you at one point. I finished the game second time on pacifist and there was maybe one camp where instead of weepers I had normal healthy people. There was maybe less rats in areas? But your Chaos does determine the ending and how characters treat you in the end.

    Soundtrack is ok, fits the game but the only track that is outstanding is the “Drunken Whaler” song which is only in trailer and you can hear some guards whistling theme of that track :D
    Drunken Whaler

    Dishonored: Dunwall City Trials DLC

    Dishonored: Dunwall City Trials DLC

    5/10
    57.4 hours
    80 of 80 achievements

    First DLC released for Dishonored and the least fun from all three, DCT offers 10 challenges with two difficulty settings. All challenges are pretty short and straight forward e.g. here’s a house, steal as much stuff as you can and get bonus points for staying undetected. Another example, run from point A to B as fast as you can.

    I’ll keep it short, most of them are ok but really get boring after you do them once, there’s very little point in replaying them unless you REALLY care about leaderboards or want to get achievements. The most fun I had is where you are stuck on a party in a mansion and you have to get clues that randomly spawn each challenge and find who you have to kill. There’s a dozen or so characters, wearing either blue or red clothes, headwear or not and being different class (guard, aristocrat, servant). Each clue tells you a little more until you get four of them and you know who it is. Try your luck with no clues or just couple – kill wrong person, you fail and challenge is over. Kill the right one and you get bonus points for luck.

    Not a DLC worth picking if this is the only one you don’t own, unless you plan to 100% Dishonored then you sadly need it.

    Oh and one more thing, if you want your highscores to be uploaded to leaderboards, make sure you undo any tweaks or fixes you did in .ini files. I tweaked graphics a little and a game didn’t uploaded my scores lol. So even though I did all of them on both difficulties, the only proof I have is few screenshots I took :S

    Dishonored: The Knife of Dunwall

    Dishonored: The Knife of Dunwall

    7/10
    0 hours
    no achievements

    In The Knife of Dunwall (TKoD) you play as one of the key characters from the base game, Daud. The DLC starts shortly after you escape as Corvo in base game.

    This DLC is mostly just more Dishonored. There are only 3 missions and on first and second you have to infiltrate and get rid of someone, as usual you have to option to kill them or spare them and remove from power by some other means. The levels are as always really well designed, giving you option to approach it in different ways and enter the area of interest via different entries and ways.
    The last mission is slightly different as your base is being attacked by Overseers and you have to reclaim it, but even then you can do it without killing anyone and avoiding all the attackers.

    Daud also doesn’t have access to “Possession” or “Rat Swarm” power, but he has some unique new powers, like ability to summon one of his assassin’s to fight along side him and a passive that boost’s his assassin’s powers. His blink also stops time if he doesn’t move (even in air!), making it really easy blink between unaware enemies or doing sick moves and climbs. It’s also a really cool aspect that people marked by the Outsider have either different powers or they have their own twists (like Daud’s blink). I know from trailers that Emily also has some unique powers in Dishonored 2.

    Overall it’s a decent DLC, but maybe because I jumped into it straight after finishing base game I didn’t enjoyed as much as Dishonored? Still, if you somehow still don’t own it or wonder if GOTY version is worth it, it is and I can recommend this one :)

    Dishonored: The Brigmore Witches

    Dishonored: The Brigmore Witches

    7/10
    0 hours
    no achievements

    A continuation of Daud story, this one picks where TKoD left off. This one is a little longer and introduces some new enemies, new kind of bone charms and a power that wasn’t available to Corvo, but was often used against you in base game by the assassin group.

    TBW offers again 3 missions with the second one being so long that I think it took me more to finish it longer than other two combined, which made me a little bored at times, as there was some downtime during that. I also felt like this time the levels were a little more closed than in previous DLC and base game, with perhaps the last mission being the exception and giving you some options to enter the building.

    This DLC introduces corrupted bone charms, which give better benefits than normal one’s but also give you some kind of debuff. For example, the one I wore stopped mana regeneration after using blink and other low mana cost powers and I COMPLETELY FORGOT ABOUT IT! I thought they just removed the mana regeneration in TBW to make mana elixirs more useful, but nope, it was my own stupidity and made this DLC a little harder. I had to be waaaay more careful with using my abilities and made game a bit more challenging. Don’t make the same mistake :D I can’t even remember what benefit I got from that corrupted bone charm.

    New enemies are undead hounds and the witches. Hounds act the same, but to truly kill them you have to break their skull after downing them. Witches, are just different assassin’s that fight for Daud. They blink around, sometimes coming at you with a sword and every now throwing a fireball from what I remember. Frankly I didn’t had a chance to fight them in open except the first time you meet as I did the last mission in full stealth, killing them from distance with headshots, so yeah, not a lot to say about them.

    Story is a bit more interesting in this DLC as it actually shows that Daud helped saved Empire too, not just Corvo and as the Outsider says, no one will ever truly know his story. People will only and forever know his as the master assassin and neither Emily nor Corvo will know what he did for the Empire.

    The final boss is kinda a mess. You get to fight a lot of false copies of the enemy, get pushed a lot and set on fire. It’s the only time in both DLC’s where ability to summon one of your assassin’s is really helpful as he helps to take attention of some enemies. But once you figure out what to do, it’s a really simple fight.

    Overall a good DLC with some improvements and additions but also some downgrades (less open level design & slightly disappointing finale). Still, recommended if you liked base game and/or TKoD! :)

    January report

    Heyo,

    As I expected in my last post, this was pretty chill month for me when it comes to playing games. I only finished 2 mods for half-life 2, Minerva which you can quickly read about below.

    MINERVA: Metastasis

    MINERVA: Metastasis

    +7/10
    2.3 hours
    no achievements

    Minerva is one of the most known singleplayer HL2 mods in the community and it's been out there since 2005.

    It's a solid piece of work and could be a part of HL2 and it would fit. You gun down a lot of combine and zombies, you solve some puzzles and the author understood some of the level design in HL2 and 1. It's a solid 2-3 hour experience from beginning to the end.

    I started playing Dishonored this month, 9 hours in and so far I’m really enjoying it. Hopefuly I will finish it this month and maybe even 100% it but I can already see that’s gonna be tough :D

    Thanks for reading and see ya next month!