ArbitraryWater's forum posts

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#1 Posted by ArbitraryWater (15681 posts) -

I've always felt that the 2014 Thief reboot got a bad rap. You can tell it had a messy development with a bunch of discordant ideas, its tone is some dour, grimdark nonsense, but it's also a decent stealth-ass stealth game.

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#2 Posted by ArbitraryWater (15681 posts) -

Alright, might as well put what I thought of this season's shows. Still might end up watching Shield Hero, which looks like the kind of problematic, pandering Isekai trash I need in my life, as well as Promised Neverland. Anything for Spring I should be paying attention to? The new Fruits Basket?

Boogiepop and Others: Boogiepop is a weird, detached, thoughtful show, and for the most part that worked for me. If I have a problem with it, it's that the nonstandard story structure really doesn't give much in terms of meaningful closure or conclusions on a broader basis, so I guess it's time to read the original light novels or hope for a Season 2. Also worth mentioning that it's the same general animation team behind the first season of One Punch Man (RIP season 2) so it looks downright gorgeous at times, even when characters are just talking. Also, this is something that really benefits from being binge-watched instead of week-to-week.

Mob Psycho 100 II: Just fantastic on every level. If I was one of those monsters who started throwing around the words "Anime of the Year" in Winter, this would be right up there for sure. Watching Mob grow from an intentionally boring character at the beginning of season one to where he is at the end of this is some A++ character development.

Kaguya-Sama: Love is War: The weird stealth hit for me, in regards to being a show I was originally never going to give the time of day until I saw that Chika Fujiwara dance. It gets far more mileage out of its premise than I thought possible, and a lot of that comes down to good comedic timing and voice acting.

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#3 Edited by ArbitraryWater (15681 posts) -

@nutter: Not to say that I didn't enjoy most of the games you listed, more that I think they found a format that worked and stuck too it a little too closely. While you can certainly see examples of them in Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights, a lot of favorite plot tropes, character archetypes, the concept of *Meaningful Choices*, and so on all were established or solidified in KotOR. That's more what I was trying to get at.

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#4 Edited by ArbitraryWater (15681 posts) -

@nutter: As someone who used to consider Bioware his favorite developer, I feel you. It's kind of separate from the concerns this piece raises, but even if they put out a good new Dragon Age sequel, I dunno if I have it in me to care. That's perhaps a tad pessimistic, but Inquisition was successful and I kinda hated Inquisition.

I've gone off at length about my weird, complicated feelings about them elsewhere, but to put it in stark terms I don't think Bioware's style of writing and characterization has progressed that much beyond the original Knights of the Old Republic. That was fine when they were basically the only Western RPG game in town during the mid-late '00s, but not only have other RPG developers progressed, plenty of other genres have RPG elements or focused narratives these days. I dunno, at this point even making a game without a troubled development that comes together at the last second isn't necessarily enough to grab my attention.

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#5 Edited by ArbitraryWater (15681 posts) -

It turns out this is the thing that might get me to softmod a 3DS and import the games from Japan. Apparently it's trivially easy to do that sort of stuff these days.

I hope the translation is good. I found the one for Investigations 2 to be way better than it had any right to be, so I hope they're taking liberties when appropriate. Zero interest in playing an Ace Attorney game with a super-literal translation.

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#6 Edited by ArbitraryWater (15681 posts) -

There's a real echo to Schreier's piece on Andromeda from a few years ago. A toxic combination of mismanagement and Frostbite being a nightmare meant that there was never a clear vision and shit didn't actually start coming together until the last 18 months. The bit about how the game was still technically in pre-production when it was revealed at E3 2017 is some crazy, eye-opening stuff. Same goes for the bit about "stress casualties." Enough people burnt out on your game dev that you came up with a term for it?

Dragon Age 4 is going to need to make a hell of a pivot if they're going to come out of this intact. It's probably too late for me (Inquisition and Andromeda were the last two nails in the coffin) but I feel like if Bioware gets shuttered, it will kill a part of my childhood, or something.

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#7 Posted by ArbitraryWater (15681 posts) -

I don't think Larian is the primary developer on this game. It says in the Kickstarter post that they've actually outsourced it to Dutch indie studio Logic Artists, the people behind Expeditions: Conquistador and Expeditions: Viking. I remember messing around with the former and finding it impenetrable, but it sounds like people were into Viking.

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#8 Posted by ArbitraryWater (15681 posts) -

It's been a while since a video game spoke as directly to my sensibilities as the Resident Evil 2 remake. Between that and DMC V, Capcom is already off to a great start in the "make video games that I like" department.

As for Sekiro . . . I kind of wonder if that's a game that is going to get re-evalutated somewhat by the end of the year. Despite all the praise it's been getting, I've found it to be extremely one note. Hard for the sake of being hard, except that it kind of isn't once you get the parry mechanic down. And past that initial difficult spike, there isn't really anything else to keep you playing - the environments are all really same-y, the enemy variety is lacking, there isn't any armor to try on, and the story is utterly forgettable. Personally, I felt like I'd kind of "seen it" by about halfway through the game and I certainly don't see myself giving it multiple playthroughs.

I'm more positive on Sekiro than you are, but the game is definitely in its honeymoon phase right now. I could see the Souls devoted falling off a little bit, given that there isn't much to latch onto in terms of build variety, repeat playthroughs, etc. I'm not quite sure where I land, after finishing it, other than thinking I really liked it up until I had to ram my head against the final boss for half a dozen hours.

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#9 Posted by ArbitraryWater (15681 posts) -

Wasn't there only one other Sakura Wars game that actually made it over here? 2010, huh? Wow.

Honestly, the idea of a game that's half dating-sim, half mech strategy game sounds right up my degenerate alley, so I guess I'll be keeping an eye on this.

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#10 Posted by ArbitraryWater (15681 posts) -

7 years since Borderlands 2, and this initial trailer sure does look a lot like Borderlands 2. Hopefully there will be something else on top of that. Say what you will about Destiny and the numerous ways they’ve fumbled the ball, the *actual shooting* in those games is top notch, which is more than can be said for Borderlands infinite variety of bad guns.

At the very least, I hope they take the right cues from Tales from the Borderlands on the writing front... but I’m not entirely optimistic about that either.