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beard_of_zeus

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2013 4440 38 34
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beard_of_zeus

2013

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Edited By beard_of_zeus

@avioto: I still need to check out Strange Horticulture and Symphony of War, both of those looked up my alley. Also, they made another Syberia game?? I totally missed that.


Other than the top 3 this was a surprisingly difficult list to put together. Mainly trying to rank all the different but banger narrative games that came out this year.

Yeah, "extremely good narrative-focused games" are going to be most of my list this year, there were a lot of excellent ones. I'm still finishing up Pentiment at the moment, but that will also be on there for sure.

Also I am apparently one of the only humans who did not play Elden Ring, so that frees up a spot, haha. (I think that was mainly a combination of me being burned out on Soulslikes and also everyone talking about it all the time actually had a weird opposite effect on me that made me not want to play it. The latter thing is more a personal hangup of mine, not the fault of the game, I'm sure it is good.)

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beard_of_zeus

2013

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Alex's line about Dan having "the musical tastes of a single-issue voter" made me laugh so hard.

I don't think I would enjoy playing Fortnite myself, but I have a good time watching y'all have a good time with it.

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beard_of_zeus

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Edited By beard_of_zeus
@csl316 said:

Considering the 360 era was mostly before bloated open-world purgatory, sign me right up.

I'm of the same mind as you. I've played quite a few hours of this game so far and am genuinely really enjoying it (glad Dan seems to be into it as well). The combat is super duper fun and there's more depth to it (especially as you get more perks/upgrades) than you might think. Was also pleasantly surprised at how many different enemy types they introduce as you go along as well, it gets hectic once they start mixing and matching them in combat encounters.

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beard_of_zeus

2013

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Edited By beard_of_zeus

My interest in this game went down to zero after reading about how they seemingly threw all of Bayonetta's character development in the toilet and made Luka a centerpiece of the story. The first piece of dialogue in this quick look being the characters talking about a man being their savior is exactly what I was worried about, feels like a real 180 from the female empowerment of the first couple games.

Viola seems kinda obnoxious as well from what was shown off. Even if the gameplay is good, i feel like i would be better served replaying Bayonetta 2 or something (been a while, i played the original Wii U release way back when).

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beard_of_zeus

2013

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Thanks for showing this off, would have not been on my radar otherwise. I bought it and played through an entire run in one sitting and really loved it. I appreciate that it is short enough for me to want to play through more with different builds and try and get some of the other endings now.

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beard_of_zeus

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Thanks for showing this off, ended up buying it and am enjoying it so far!

@kdr_11k said:

Gives me vague "Inside A Star-Filled Sky" vibes though that's not a puzzle game.

I also had this same thought.

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beard_of_zeus

2013

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Lot of good stuff in here!!! The only thing missing I was kinda hoping for was a release date for Metal Slug Tactics, but luckily there was other SRPG goodness to be had.

I know Jason mentioned he thought Age of Calamity didn't do well, but it looks like it actually sold gangbusters (around 4 million units, although clearly the Zelda connection helped since the first FE Warriors was closer to 1 million). Maybe with Three Houses getting popular, it will also prop up sales of the new Musou. I'm a weird longtime FE fan who kinda hated 3 Houses, but likes Musous, so this is more in my wheelhouse. That first FE Warriors game (as well as the port of the first Hyrule Warriors) actually ran pretty well on the Switch, so hopefully the technical performance is closer to that than Age of Calamity.

Pretty cool reveal this time for fans of old-school RPGs. XC3 looks promising too. I adored XC1, hated everything about 2, but I am hopeful 3 will be good. Kirby is looking absolutely adorable.

I'm also in the XC1 lover / XC2 hater camp (which feels like a minority opinion), I hope this new one hues closer to the original game.

Nintendo seems to be laser targeting late 90s Japan import games nostalgia much more than before with this Direct.

I'm here for it, they've got my number, haha. Live A Live coming west was definitely nowhere on my radar.

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beard_of_zeus

2013

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@mento Good writeup. I had the same complaints about the perviness and the janky translation causing actual confusion with regards to some of the spirit clues/puzzles.

I don't remember any issues with saving, but in my defense, I played the Switch version of this and the follow-up game, which made them easy to take a break from as needed.

Speaking of, if you liked the core of the this game, I would recommend checking out Spirit Hunter: NG (as you mentioned you might), it feels a bit more polished and fixed the aforementioned issues. The translation was quite a bit better, not sure if they worked with better localizers, or had more of a budget, etc.

Overall, I love the core spookiness of these games, I find it to be pretty effective, and I'm a sucker for adventure game style puzzles. I think the color palette in particular and art style is just fantastic. Drawing a line between Experience's DRPG bonafides and this game's horror is quite apt.

Speaking of, their newest DRPG from this year, Undernauts, is really great (see my GOTY list!). It felt like it took some elements from their Spirit Hunter games in a cool way, hewing more towards a similar art style than a lot of their very anime-looking DRPGs. A lot of the bosses in Undernauts also have similar puzzles to the spirits in these games that I was not expecting, where you are gathering clues, reading item descriptions, etc. to figure out how to summon them or have an advantage in battle over them.

For example, in the first dungeon, you are gathering a ton of items and have to figure out which of them are appropriate to throw in this pit where the boss is. Some of the them will cause damage to you or make the boss more irritated when you actually get to fight him. You have to talk to NPCs and examine the items to get a better idea of the creature's backstory and ascertain what makes sense, I thought that was a neat twist (and most of the bosses do something in this vein).

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beard_of_zeus

2013

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@daavpuke: Thanks! Yeah the Metroidvania genre is definitely super crowded, but Ender Lilies really stuck out to me.

I need to get to some of the looper games of this year, I played some of Forgotten City and enjoyed it, and should finish it. Overboard! is on my list as well. I did finish Gnosia, very cool concept (basically a time looping social deduction game), but gets a bit repetitive by the end.

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beard_of_zeus

2013

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Edited By beard_of_zeus

I know there was a lot of goofing on Dead or School, but I found it to actually be a pretty solid side-scrolling action game with some interesting RPG elements (a lot of loot, weapon upgrades, skill trees, etc.). I 100%-ed it a while back and enjoyed it - fairly long too, took me about 25 hours or so.

It's a bit rough around the edges from a technical perspective, but it has a lot of heart, and the combat is fun and pretty challenging at times. The narrative is surprisingly decent and I found the main character's simple desire to just want to do something normal like go to school in a fucked up apocalypse world surprisingly heartfelt, despite how hokey the conceit sounds.

I don't understand the weird horniness around the game from people online that Jason mentioned, other than the box art (which seems sorta out of place), that's not the vibe of the game at all.

Anyways, just wanted to say my piece, byeeeeeee.