petbastard’s profile

I just wanna play videogames.


Welp, it’s been a while.

Report 18: Hodgepodge

    The Legend of Bum-Bo

    The Legend of Bum-Bo

    7/10
    35 hours playtime

    It’s a new McMillen game, so I got it day one and I’m somewhat dissapointed with it. Forget the awful and bug-ridden launch, this puzzle game isn’t thought out that well.
    My main issue with the game is that it relies on luck way too heavily. Of course, The Binding of Isaac also could surprise you with unbearably terrible run, but theoretically, you could manage with your skills alone even if the items the game gave you arent’ that good. On the other hand, Bum-bo is extremely linear and constrained, and there WILL be situations where you can’t do anything about your impending game over. And you have almost no free space for planning ahead.
    The unlockables system is quite questionable - you can’t get to the final level on your first try and have to “beat” shorter runs that end prematurely on level one, two and three with specific characters first. It was somewhat annoying and felt like it was trying to build up the unlockable system with no footing to stand on, and also prolonging the game artificially. But the worst offender is the “jackpot” unlocks, which are randomly unlocked if you’re lucky. The chances of getting the unlock go down by 5% each time you win it, and I’ve still got two unlocks to do, so I’ve been wasting my time on pointless runs, just to get turned down by the game randomizer. That is REALLY annoying, and probably the worst gamedesign decision in the game.
    The ending is pretty lazy for my taste, but it’s really not the plot that makes Edmund’s games good anyway.
    But still, it was pretty fun to play at times, even if there’s not much variety there, although a bit easy when the game gods are kind to you. It’s replayability is nowhere near Isaac levels, but you can give it a try if you’re hungry for some usual Edmund stuff.

    Eat All The Things

    Eat All The Things

    5.5/10
    3 hours playtime

    It’s a pretty generic platformer. It’s style is kinda bland. Plenty of bugs and jank. The most fearsome enemy in the game is the camera, sometimes it’s hard to force the needed angle in time. Some of its’ features feel like they haven’t been utilized properly. Could use some polishing.
    I’ve unlocked an achievement about getting to the “Bonus Stages”, so I’ll take it I’ve beaten the main game and leave it at that, since I’m not having much fun with it anyway. The abovementioned bonus stage made me go “okay this is a pain the ass” and quit it after two minutes or so. There’s really not much to be said about the game, really

    Red Comrades Save the Galaxy: Reloaded

    Red Comrades Save the Galaxy: Reloaded

    7/10
    7 hours playtime

    aka Петька и Василий Иванович Спасают Галактику: Перезагрузка
    It’s a remaster of an old-school russian point’n’click, originally released in 1998. It’s a very nostalgic title for me, so it was a pretty comfy experience to play it again. It’s based on the real historical figures - Chapaev and Isaev (although it’s more like it’s based on the anecdotes with aforementioned characters), taking place during 1917 revolution events.
    Honestly, I’m really surprised with all the foreign reviews and the fact this game found some form of success with the western public, it heavily depends on russian folklore, mentality, humour, and some references can fly over someone else’s head pretty easily; or their meaning may not be translated into english very well (I don’t know if that’s the case, since I’ve played the russian version for obvious reasons). Nonetheless, there are english subtitles. One of the reviews said the translation is functional, but is clearly inferior to the original and loses a lot of punch and context.
    The artstyle and the animations are pretty pleasant to watch, the voice acting is really good most of the time.
    Besides the other improvements, this remaster also introduced the controller support, hint system and simplified control mode. While the simplified mode does make the game easier to control, it also completely destroys one of it’s parts, by removing the direct usage of your inventory. What it means is that, for example, you click on the object in the game and besides the usual look/touch/use menu buttons, it shows you all the objects you can use on it to move the plot forward or to get a unique reaction. You no longer have to figure out that you have to use inventory object A on the game object B yourself, the game shows you the way itself. The same thing happened to combining the items in your inventory. Although it does make a game easier, it does its’ job a little too well and just feels like an odd decision to me.
    Overall, it still was a great and fun game to beat again.

    Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter

    Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter

    7/10
    12 hours playtime

    It’s an HD remaster of the first game in the Croteam’s cash cow franchise that is Serious Sam.
    If you know about it, there’s not much to it. It’s an arena shooter that can get pretty hard on normal, gets really hard on hard, and downright impossible on the difficulties settings above that. Pretty iconic lineup of weapons that only gets bigger in the Second Encounter. Same with the enemies lineup. Kleers are annoying as ever.
    If I remember correctly (it’s been a while since I played the originals), I liked the Second Encounter more for being more original. The First Encounter is pretty good at what it does, but it can certainly get repetitive.
    I miss the times when games had secret levels you can easily miss. It’s nice to stumble upon those.
    The lion’s share of achievements is multiplayer-related. Hate those and hated these too.
    Overall, it’s Serious Sam with better graphics. You know the drill.

Backlog progress status: all over the place

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It’s almost the middle of November, and that means it’s a perfect time for some Halloween stuff. You be quiet, I’m never late to the party.

Report 17: Spooky ABC…D

    Alpha Polaris : A Horror Adventure Game

    Alpha Polaris : A Horror Adventure Game

    6,5/10
    5 hours playtime

    It’s a pretty small, as you may, ahem, already noticed, Horror Adventure Game. I can’t argue with that, but find it weird that the devs even decided to be that clear about the game content. I guess it’s for the marketing purposes.
    It has an okay-ish typical horror movie plot with a small cast of characters. A few characters are pretty cookie cutter and flat, but, I mean, it’s a horror moviesh game that you can beat in 5-6 hours or even less, you don’t exactly need something complex. The key characters are written well enough.
    Due to the somewhat serious mood of the quest, there are no nonsensical puzzles, even though they can be a little less obvious than I would prefer. Some of the puzzles are pretty unusual for the genre, and there’s one you can get through by 4 different ways (ranging from the worst execution possible to best one).
    The game has a feature of clicking on main character to remind you of your objectives, and I highly reccomend to leave it turned on, so the game won’t confuse you with you guessing what are you supposed to trigger to move the story forward right now.
    The voice acting is decent. Besides the usual 3d models, this game also features characters’ sprites, they look really neat and it’s a nice thing they weren’t included.
    The ending could be executed a bit better, and there was a really questionable moment that was never adressed properly near the end. Also this game has an optional awkward 3d sex scene, just like I love ‘em. It’s not Fahrenheit levels of awkward and not as painfully long and uncomfortable, but it’s there.
    Overall, just a somewhat decent point’n’click. It didn’t blow my mind, but I don’t feel I’ve wasted my time either.

    Bulb Boy

    Bulb Boy

    7/10
    2 hours playtime

    It’s a small and simpistic horror point’n’click. It mashes cute, scary and funny together quite well.
    It certainly looks unique, but the color palette would get pretty monotonous if the game wasn’t that short.
    The puzzles are pretty easy, there is pretty much no way to get stuck somewhere. The inventory usage part is almost nonexistent, and the main focus are tasks that involve moving around and interacting with the environment.
    Overall. it was a pretty nice game to play on Halloween.

    Camp Sunshine

    Camp Sunshine

    6,5/10
    3 hours playtime
    no achievements

    It’s a small horror game (I dunno about you, but I’m starting to feel some kind of pattern here) that features simplistic survival horror mechanics and puzzles.
    The game takes place in a somewhat open location of abovemenitoned camp which you can explore at your own leisure, which feels really neat.
    By survival horror mechanics I meant there are random chase sequences scattered throughout the game. You can trigger the chase by making some kind of noise, or it can just start randomly if you’ve been inside some building for some time. The downside is, by leaving the location, you can cancel out the chase sequence, and once you know that, there’s not much tension to be found anymore. The killer also doesn’t kill you with the first hit, so you can heal yourself up with food on the go. I haven’t died once during the game, not that it’s necessarily means it’s bad or anything. Puzzles are your typical mazes, box pushing and fetch quests.
    The plot is the usual cheesy horror stuff, but interesting enough to follow. The game doesn’t shy away from pixelated gore. There were a couple of jumpscares, but they kinda failed to scare me as they usually do, and I’ll have to assume that the lack of tension and understanding of the way the game works messes up the scare factor.
    It actually turned out to be better than I thought it would be, even if it wasn’t that scary.

    DISTRAINT 2

    DISTRAINT 2

    6/10
    3 hours playtime

    It’s a sequel to the first 2d horrorish adventure game. I wasn’t exactly sure if the first game even needed a sequel, and I’m still conflicted about it.
    I wouldn’t call the game a technical step-up, since I don’t think anything changed radically enough so I could notice. The plot is… uh. Let’s just say - and I hate to use the word - sometimes it’s so cringy it’s getting obnoxious. I really couldn’t take the game seriously enough at some moments, it can be unbearably cheesy - especially the ending part. But it’s not the worst for that kind of stories, I’ve certainly seen at least one game that did the same shtick, but far, far worse and lazier (it’s Keep in Mind, for those who are interested). Distraint 2 actually tells you a comprehensible story and it actually feels like the dev actually made an effort - and it’s not like the end result is that bad, it’s just corny at times.
    The puzzles are pretty simple and solveable, there were a couple of interesting ones. There is a 15-puzzle with very inconvenient controls.
    There are some monster encounters where you should hide or run, but they are extremely easy and scripted, and it feels like they’re there just for the sake of this game having at least some kind of “active” horror element to it.
    Overall, it’s an unnecessary sequel imo, but it was still entertaining enough to play through.

Backlog progress status: spooked

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Report 16: Big Boys Time IV: Triple Treat

    Prey

    Prey

    9/10
    65 hours playtime

    As you may have already heard a couple dozen times, Prey 2017 is perfectly described as a love letter to Bioshock/System Shock and so on. To my shame, I am yet to play System Shocks, but from what I could gather, this statement is pretty much true.
    Sci-fi, horror, transhumanism - yup, sounds like my kind of jam.
    What I really liked about this one is how the world feels much more seamless than Bioshock’s. Yes, you could go back to any of the previous levels in B., but here you feel like you’re on an actual ship instead of just going between bunch of levels in a 2d-dimensional way.
    Furthermore, the game doesn’t obstruct you in any way that is not natural. There is a skill-based obstacles, such as repairing things, moving the heavy objects out of the way, etc. - but there are always a few more ways you can get things done, like creating ledges with GLOO cannon so you can climb up the wall or using the recycle grenades to destroy the object obstructing the passage. The possibilities are limited at some point, of course, but you still have to be creative.
    My main issue with the game is that I’ve expected to be scarier, or… scary at all? It does have, like, two or three jumpscares and overall tense atmosphere, but most of the game takes place in a fairly normal, well-lit environment, and you get used to the enemies fairly quickly. You just have too many tools at your disposal to feel scary. As soon as you have enough shotgun ammo and Combat Focus skill, there’s literally nothing that can stop you in this game. Even a non-skill run that’s required for one of the achievements, isn’t that hard either (or maybe I’m just that good, heh). I think I’m going to replay it on harder difficulty sometime in the future.
    Fun fact: Morgan’s ex, Mikhaila was renamed to Ekaterina in the russian translation. The reason for that is (probably) very simple: authors created a feminine version of the male name Mikhail(it’s diminutive form is Misha) by adding the -a to the end. Suffice to say, there is no such name in the modern Russian culture (at least I haven’t heard of it), and the russian translators seemed to be really bothered with that for some reason. Ekaterina (dim. f. is Katya), however, is a very common russian name. The thing is, there was a period of time in USSR history when it was, uh, - “trendy” is not the right word, but let’s roll with it - to give weird non-existent names by transforming the words or abbreviatures into names, and since Prey set in the universe where Soviet Union is still a thing… well, I guess our translators didn’t put that much thought into it.
    Mooncrash DLC was an interesting and fun addition to the main game. It has a fairly interesting concept and resembles a roguelike game with a twist - you get through the same location with five different characters in a row - and I mean the same, every item taken and every typhon you killed stays dead - at least for some time (it’s complicated, i’m not gonna go into details). This DLC also forces Survival mode features on you - such as weapons durability, body traumas etc. - which I never got to try out during the main game. Weapons breaking down is pretty annoying, but it’s not that hard to find a new one. Traumas turned out to be a really interesting implementation that freshens up the experience a bit.
    The problem is, this DLC has a fairly small map, and you’ll know all the ins and outs around four-five hours in. It gets really repetitive after a while, even moreso if you go for the achievements. I was getting pretty tired of this DLC and Prey altogether at some point, but I still managed to complete it.
    Overall, it’s a great game with a pretty solid DLC.

    Prey: Typhon Hunter

    Prey: Typhon Hunter

    2/10
    33 minutes playtime

    Wow, this is… terrible.
    Essentially this is an attempt to squeeze the milk outta typhon’s mimicry meme, resulting in a Prop Hunt ripoff that is completely devoid of fun. There might have been some fun factor for this, if it wasn’t for a fact that the multiplayer is d-e-a-d, since nobody is playing this garbage, and there’s plenty of reasons for that.
    Even without the multiplayer experience, the game already looks pretty unbalanced and not well thought out. There’s literally no content (3 small maps, wrench+pistol, a psychoscope bonus and that’s it). Awful hit detection. You can’t play as a mimic without the other player as Morgan (dead multiplayer strikes again).
    This feels like a throwaway product instead of an actual game mode. I know it’s free, but it doesn’t change the fact that it’s waaaaay too lazy.

    Prey

    Prey (2006)

    7,5/10
    6 hours playtime
    no achievements

    It’s a first person shooter, a long-suffering game that was announced back in ‘95, came out more than 10 years later after several failed attempts, and was supposed to be further made into a franchise before it failed and has been rebooted to become an entirely different game.
    This one is obviously not inspired by the same games as 2017 game, it has more of a Doom 3 vibe with less horror elements if anything, imo. Pretty simple plot, predictable story structure and characters’ motivations, but it all works in a pretty neat way and feels like solid above-average action movie plot.
    This game tries its hardest to be unique and that’s a great thing. Out of all the shticks the game shows off, most of it is gravity-related. It certainly looses its novelty after a while, but the game isn’t that long to begin with, so it’s not really a problem. The puzzles that require you to leave your body are getting repetitive pretty quick too.
    Really liked the alien-language-translation-on-the-go gimmick. Haven’t seen scenes with child deaths for a while, that sure was a surprise.
    If I had to pick a downside of this game, I’d say it feels too linear. This giant alien ship should’ve been a really interesting place, yet there’s little to no room for exploration, and even when you get to wander off trail, your efforts aren’t rewarded apart from stumbling upon more ammo. I know this might sound like a weird complaint (and it’s certainly is), but that’s just how I feel. Those Art Bell Earth signal transmissions could’ve worked great as a side thing you could look for, and yet it’s kinda hard to miss them on your way through. But then again, it’s not that kind of a game, I guess.
    Also, I have no idea why would they include a ressurrection mechanic in a game like this. It makes the game downright unloseable and my completion was a matter of time instead of being a skill challenge. It’s just like vita-chambers from Bioshock, but in this case you can’t turn it off, and it makes even less sense gameplay-wise, since there’s no penalty for your failures whatsoever.
    All in all, it is a pretty outstanding game for its time, and it’s still good to play now, despite its flaws and weird decisions.

Backlog progress status: not a mimic

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Report 15: Big Boys Time III: The Hornium Files

    AI: The Somnium Files

    AI: The Somnium Files

    9/10
    37 hours playtime

    This one technically never got in my backlog, because I bought it on day one and played it since then.
    It’s a new Uchikoshi game and it shows. It uses pretty much all of his usual tropes, but still manages to be entertaining even if you know the creator well.
    It takes its time building up and can be a little slow at times, but once you get used to the pacing, it comes off as a really comfy game. It’s chockfull of intentionally dumb puns and sexual innuendo jokes, and it can be either heaven or hell for you depending on the way your sense of humour works. Thankfully, it hit the sweet spot for me. Most of the humour takes place while randomly clicking on different things during the investigations, do if you don’t like it, you can pretty much skip it, but if you like that kind of humor, I really advice you to take your time and click through all the stuff, multiple times sometimes.
    As always, Uchikoshi succeeds at creating a cast full of memorable/likeable characters and a couple or two of incredibly touching moments. Not to spoil anything, PSYNCIN’ IN THE SUSTaiN was easily the best of those, even if it had little to do with the actual story.
    Goddamnit, I loved Date and Aibo way too much.
    Besides the VN/clicking on stuff part, there’s also puzzle segments that are fairly interesting, although the way these puzzles work, you can’t really make them challenging without making them annoying/boring, which happened to the two of those. It’s basically still trial-and-error-based, and it’s not a fun kind of challenging, to be honest.
    There were a few of weird/nonsensical plot points, but I was expecting that and I’m not too harsh on the game for it.
    I sure wish it was less buggy - as far as I know, it works fine on Win10, but it sure works like ass on my Win7. I’ve had to save and reload during multiple softlocks during the game, shut it down when it softlocked during some transitions, and yeah, by the way, the game crashed because it couldn’t play the final cutscene. As in, 3 minutes before you go to the main menu, finishing the game. Sure spoils the impression a bit.
    Thankfully, Spike Chunsoft released a beta for Win7 users, the code is Windows7Beta. AFAIK, the softlocks are still there, but at least the ending works fine now.
    Overall, it’s a great game. Thankfully, Uchikoshi didn’t turn out to be a complete one trick pony (I mean, let’s be fair, he uses pretty much the same plot devices over and over) and did a nice job with it. I can definitely recommend this one, if you don’t mind some really random humor from time to time.

Backlog progress status: AI wish AI BOT less games

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I’ve beaten two available chapters of a free danganronpa-like game Kimi ga Shine (aka Your Turn To Die). It was a BLAST, what a ride. Highly recommend it. Watch out for spoilers though.

Report 14: Back in time

    Space Quest Collection

    Space Quest Collection | Space Quest II: Vohaul's Revenge

    7/10
    3 hours playtime (6 overall)
    no achievements

    Just a classic Sierra point’n’click with many, many ways to screw yourself over. If you don’t know what you’re dealing with, you better stay out of it or use walkthrough as frequently as possible. This game can and WILL screw you over, also killing poor guy Roger in the most gruesome ways possible in the process. There's literally an event near the end, which seems harmless at first, but kills you around 30 minutes later Thankfully, I managed to get to the ending fast enough so the death segment won't be triggered after reloading.
    The first game’s VGA version was better (duh). Haven’t played the EGA version though, so I can’t compare these two, which would be logical here, sadly.
    Due to the lack of VGA interface and scenery details, there’s not much room for humour as in the first one’s VGA version. There were annoyingly many pixel-precision segments, where you have to slow the speed down and navigate Roger through stuff as accurately as possible.
    Despite everything, it was pretty alright and had its moments. It’s also actually pretty short, just like the first one.

    Hitman: Codename 47

    Hitman: Codename 47

    7/10
    15 hours playtime
    no achievements

    I think… I kinda hated it? What I’m feeling is not all-out kind of hatred, but it’s sprinkled all over my feelings about that one.
    The thing is, I can’t hate the game for not being as hitman-y as I wanted it to, because there was no Hitman game yet to look up to before this one.
    But then again, it doesn’t change the fact that I disliked most of the missions. They tend to get pretty boring and tiresome, since one little screw-up can make you do the tedious parts all over again (there is no saving function during missions). Plutonium Runs Loose (the ship one) has to take the cake as the most annoying one, although I’m torn between this and Say Hello To My Little Friend. Traditions Of The Trade was easily the best mission in the game.
    Quite a few annoying bugs (crashing near the end of a mission, triggering an alarm for seemingly no reason at all, getting stuck in textures), but manageable overall. Honestly, not a bad game. I mean, I played through it and was invested in it until the bitter end.

    STEINS;GATE 0

    STEINS;GATE 0

    7,5/10
    30 hours playtime

    It was supposed to be a retro-selection, but I finished this VN and it kinda fits for the theme, so yeah.
    It,s a sequel… spin-off… something for the original Steins;Gate VN. Honestly it wasn’t as bad as I’ve been told. Yet, the game felt kinda… pointless isn’t the right word, “needless” may be it. Although I enjoyed Maho and, obviously, Leskinen, the first novel didn’t exactly need another one to tie up its loose ends.
    New character sprites look hit-and-miss-y. Obviously liked the original ones more.
    Overall, it’s a pretty solid VN, even if it’s worth it only for the Leskinen memes.

    Half-Life

    Half-Life

    8/10
    7 hours playtime
    no achievements

    I finally played it to the end. For some reason, I stopped playing right at the final boss, without actually finishing it, and just watched a playthrough on youtube a few years later. I think I tried it a few times, only putting it on hold all the same. Now it’s finally done & dusted.
    Half-life is a classic and it doesn’t need to be reviewed whatsoever, so I’ll just list some things about it.
    Things I liked:

    • It aged pretty well
    • I’d call it situational action game or something - instead of just throwing more enemies on you, the developers tried their best to create interesting setups, forcing you to think logically, adapt or react fast enough.
    • The pacing - except for a few instances, you can be as slow or as fast as you want, the game won’t try to slow you down either way (again, except for a few instances)
    • It’s the reason Freeman’s Mind exists.

    Things I disliked

    • Railway segment - it is unique, but after a few attempts at playthrough it just feels somewhat boring and bogs down the pace.
    • Is it me or Gordon tends to slide a bit after moving/jumping whatever?

Backlog progress status: outta time… puns

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Report 13: Games are weird

    Life Is Strange

    Life Is Strange

    7/10
    17 hours playtime

    I have a weird relationship with this game. I was okay with it for a while, then I hated it, and at last I’m okay with it yet again. This marks my third playthrough (now on my Steam account) (for whatever reason).
    The plot isn’t much to chew on, if you’re even slightly familiar with time travel plots (or at least have seen Butterfly Effect) you can predict the way the story is going to play out down to every twist. There is a bunch of plotholes that revolve around inconsistencies in MC’s powers, but it’s one of those games, where it’s better if you don’t think about it.
    The atmosphere is pretty comfy.
    I didn’t mind Chloe as much as I thought I would, since I began to appreciate her as a flawed character, and not an annoyingly written one.
    And now I finally narrowed down the thing that ruins the game for me - it’s the godawful dialogues. The way writers try to make every freaking line as quirky as possible - without considering if it sounds like an actual living being would say - is downright painful. It just looks like some surreal parody on teenager talk.
    There’s another thing - almost all of Maxine’s lines sounds incredibly disingenuous, down to the point it almost sounds sarcastic. “I TOTALLY believe you” and all that.
    There was a bug that made restart near the end of the game, but nothing more.
    Oh right, the ending. The second one blows and it seems like it was provided just for the sake of having a choice. It’s really lacking and feels hastily slapped together.
    Overall I consider this game a sheer luck hit rather than a really thought-out good game. It’s… okay.

    Plug & Play

    Plug & Play

    6,5/10
    12 minutes playtime
    no achievements

    It’s a very, very short interactive animation with some heavy sexual innuendo and affection themes. Really nothing much to say about this one, it’s just too short to review properly.

    The Typing of The Dead: Overkill

    The Typing of The Dead: Overkill

    7,5/10
    12 hours playtime

    It’s a really hilarious grindhouse-style rail shooter that features both typing mode and the usual shooting mechanic mode.
    Getting all the achievements seems like a pain in the ass though and requires replaying the same levels over and over a bit too much. I’m fine at where I am now with my achievement percentage, and I don’t think I’ll get back to it.
    It was really fun while it lasted, though.

    Cosmochoria

    Cosmochoria

    6/10
    11 hours playtime

    It’s a weird space-themed roguelite game that goes way longer than it feels like it should - at least in my opinion. Basic gameplay gets really boring after a while and doesn’t justify replaying the game as much as devs seem to want you to. The sound design and music in general are kinda annoying.

Backlog progress status: hella bad

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I’ve beaten Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney on my 3DS. It’s a great game, nothing much to say about it.
Welp, I guess it’s time to dive right into the trash bin.

Report 12: Garbage day

    Dungetris

    Dungetris

    5/10
    8 hours playtime

    This game actually has a really original idea, but it doesn’t elaborate on it any further than it being just an interesting concept. It also kinda seems like a rip-off of Guild of Dungeoneering(2015), it has a somewhat similar gameplay, but “Guild” has way more thought put into it, and it’s design is much better.
    It’s functional, but looks half-baked. There’s no story and no variety, so the gameplay gets old really quick. It could’ve been much better if the devs tried a bit harder.

    Shake Your Money Simulator 2016

    Shake Your Money Simulator 2016

    2/10
    2 hours playtime

    Carpal tunnel syndrome-inducing garbage. Not funny/fun, not challenging, looks like trash and plays like one. I’ve “beaten” it, I guess? Not sure why I even have this, but I’m damn sure I won’t touch it again. Not even gonna put it in my “Hated” list, it’s only for the games that have at least tried.

    TIMEframe

    TIMEframe

    5/10
    2 hours playtime

    Even though objectively it’s a better… “game” than the first two (at least, it feels like a completed product), it’s still a mindboggingly boring walk-sim. I can’t even put it higher than Dungetris because of how much of a slog it is. You walk around for five minutes, and then the game resets. I guess it would’ve been even shorter without the resetting part, but I think I might have preffered it that way (even though it’s the whole point of a game, kinda). Nothing to see here. Really.

    Trash TV

    Trash TV

    7/10
    2 hours playtime
    no achievements

    SG win. And now - a game that isn’t actually a dumpster fire, for a change. It’s a short puzzle-ish platformer. Most of the puzzles involve using weapons at your disposal to progress, and it’s interesting that the combat isn’t even a main focus. There’s enough different game mechanics and methods to use weapon so you won’t feel bored for an hour and a half or so. If I had to nitpick, though, I find the game structure a bit odd at times - for example, there’s a - let’s call it a chase scene - that would be good for a last few screens of the game, but the way the game actually ends feels a bit anticlimactic. It’s not hard, but can be tricky at times. Overall pretty good.

Backlog progress status: zen zen dame da UWWWOOOOOOOOOOO

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76%
1%

Wew, it’s been just 4 days since the last report, and there’s a new one already. I GUESS YOU COULD SAY THAT I’M

Report 11: On a roll

    Rollers of the Realm

    Rollers of the Realm

    7,5/10
    9 hours playtime

    It’s a fantasy action pinball game with a plot. Yup.
    It sounds like a bizarre idea, but somehow it works. It’s not that hard, but can get a bit frustrating at times. I’ve finished the campaign pretty easily except for a few parts.
    The arena mode is where things get tricky and challenging. I’ve played it for some time, perfected one of the challenges, got a “bronze” for the most of them, but at some point I got too frustrated and left it at that. Arena mode seems hard, but not impossible, so, chances are, I’ll return to it one day to complete it.
    Overall: pretty fun, fresh and interesting.

    Small Radios Big Televisions

    Small Radios Big Televisions

    7/10
    2 hours playtime

    It’s a short and fairly easy puzzle game, partially abstract, partially minimalistic. There is some post-apocalyptic plot (though i’d call it lore, there’s not much of a story) going on, but it’s only hints, bits and pieces.
    It was a pretty comfortable experience, although sometimes the mouse control was a bit clunky. The ending made me remember Kubrick’s Space Odyssey.
    The price is a bit too much for the game I’ve completed in 102 minutes, imo, but if it goes on sale or shows up in a bundle - I’d say go for it.

    Time Gentlemen, Please!

    Time Gentlemen, Please!

    8/10
    5 hours playtime
    no achievements

    It’s an old-school point-&-click, just as hilarious as its predecessor, Ben There, Dan That! (at least, in my opinion). When I say old-school, I also mean that the puzzles are old-schoolishly nonsensical, which is made fun of by the game itself many times. Therefore, it can be hard as balls. Though there are many scripted jokes for most of the stuff you’ll try to interact with or combine with something, so you won’t get too frustrated just trying out random stuff - so many, in fact, it’s kinda admirable.
    It’s a solid comedy-heavy game from simpler times. God I missed all the Hitler jokes.

Cosmic Ray 5,5/10
Yet another restricted game. Well damn.
Nothing much to say about this one. It’s extremely short, you’ll beat it in 15 minutes and complete it an hour or so. Feels like some sort of a mini-game for a bigger game.
It is mildly fun for what it’s worth - maybe it’s too mild, but it doesn’t overstay it’s welcome, and I’ve got it for free either way.

Backlog progress status: just a drop in the ocean

11%
3%
8%
76%
2%

I know I’ve said no indies on my first BBT, but there’s nothing stopping me from breaking my own rules, right?

Report 10: Big Boys Time II: Going rural

    Stardew Valley

    Stardew Valley

    8,5/10
    133 hours playtime

    It’s an indie game and I wouldn’t exactly call it big, but it sure as hell took a sweet chunk of my time. Pretty sure it doesn’t need any introduction whatsoever. It’s a Harvest Moon clone, and a pretty good one at that.
    Pretty much every mechanic works as pleasantly as possible to soften the tediousness of your actions.
    Although the game can be pretty tedious alright, if you go for the completion, like I did. The last 30 hours or so I’ve spent trying to complete the museum collection, and then getting 10.000.000 in total profits. I’ve pretty much had to abandon the farm altogether and straight-up go to bed first thing in the morning while I wait for my starfruit wine to age.
    The social stuff was a bit hard too, especially since you’ll be able to contact some characters only in a very specific time slot at first - damn you, Sebastian.
    Overall a really great game.

Backlog progress status: still hopeless

11%
3%
8%
76%
2%

Welp, that Steam Grand Prix is one hell of a trainwreck. Oh well. Go pigs.

Report 9: Gone Girls

    Portal 2

    Portal 2

    9/10
    9 hours playtime

    Steam replay. I can’t exactly force myself to call the first game “not as good” or, god forbid, “worse”, so let’s just say Portal 2 is just a bigger and juicier version of the original.
    I’ll always have a soft spot for Wheatley’s humour, since GLaDOS’ snarky comments get old pretty quick, especially considering it’s the second game already.
    Puzzles became more diverse, but it’s still fairly easy.
    Too bad I’m missing on, like, a third (?) of a game because I don’t like co-op and don’t have anyone to play it with. Again, not that I want to.
    Singleplayer though? What can I say, it’s a great game.

    Emily is Away Too

    Emily is Away Too

    6,5/10
    4 hours playtime

    It’s a sequel to a pretty well-known (I guess?) Emily is Away. It was alright, although I’m not exactly a fan of “MC cops-out” way to disrupt your choices in storytelling. The sequel is not really a continuation, but more of a remake of sorts. Now you’re using the messenger with two available contacts - aforementioned Emily and a new girl, Evelyn. I can see why the script would need her to expand the scope a bit, but it’s pretty obvious most of the players would still refer to her as “not Emily” - I mean, who wouldn’t want to bring MC and Emily together after all the bittersweet and heartbreaking shit you experienced in the first one?
    Thankfully, you can actually do it this time. I felt some weird mix of fullfillment and dissapointment at the same time during the ending - I was almost waiting for something bad to happen, and then it just didn’t. Turns out I was being honest enough. Huh.
    The conversations were sometimes a bit too simplistic and shallow for my taste, to the point that it sounded unnatural. Especially the parts where you’re comforting the girls about something or commenting about the stuff they like, MC’s answers always sounded somewhat fake and disingenuous. I don’t know if it’s really a thing or I’m just being cynical and bitter.
    The “nostalgia trip” part, consisting pretty much of musical references, was kinda awkward, due to abovementioned unimaginative approach - it just keeps shoving bands’ names that were popular at the time. I have to admit, that this game is way more elaborate than it’s predecessor, using the pre-made pages on their website to parody oldschool Youtube, Facebook, Steam and stuff, that was pretty fun actually.
    Overall, there were some parts that didn’t felt geniune enough, but it was still pretty good. You feel your choices matter a lot more this time.
    And I have no idea why this review is so long, I’ve just re-checked it and - holy shit I didn’t even notice was rambling so much about it
    tl;dr: GODDAMNIT I’M LONELY

    Braid

    Braid

    8/10
    5 hours playtime

    I don’t think Braid needs any introduction whatsoever. The vague plot, time manipulation puzzles, one of the first big indie titles (I think?).
    This game screws with your brain HARD. I always had a hard time trying to recover IRL and stopping to think with porta… i mean, time manipulation. Game’s puzzles are actually ingenious most of the time. But maybe I’m just dumb. They were kinda hard sometimes. But, again, just dumb. Maybe. I ended up looking up the guides more times than I’d like to admit.
    It looks gorgeous, it sounds great, and you’re crazy if you think I’ll do your speedrun achievement, Johnatan, thanks, but I’ve had enough.

    Gone Home

    Gone Home

    6/10
    3 hours playtime

    It’s kinda weird to give it a lower score than I did with Emily is Away Too, but I just can’t help it. Even with all the level of detail, the lore and hidden stuff, the main plot feels just… normal? It’s not a bad plot at all, it just seems like nothing to write home about. I also have a problem with the way the plot is presented - storytelling through notes and environment is a hard thing to pull off, and Gone Home sometimes fails in it. You can find notes way ahead of the plot you already figured out in your head, therefore plotline loses impact without needed context. And, since notes-storytelling is all the storytelling you get, this game is filled to the brim with notes. Sometimes all these plot devices feel a little contrived - why is that note even here? - and all that stuff.
    I was told this game is really pretentious. Not really. It’s pretty straightforward.
    Well, I’m glad they embraced the meme and made an achievement for speedrunning the game (1min and 10min w/ all the notes).