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extintor

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#1  Edited By extintor

Top Eight of Twenty Twenty

1. Cyberpunk 2077
I played this on an Xbox One X and by and large had a solid and smooth experience. There were still some crashes and clearly there will continue to be polishing and patches going on for a while. The world-building and art design in this game are phenomenal. So much effort and detail have gone into making Night City's ambiance distinctive and coherent. The stellar ambition is (currently) under-realized in some ways but I hope that the DLC and possible sequels explore and further flesh out the depth in the world and the stories that could be told within it. As was the case with AC Valhalla, I got over 90 hours of entertainment out of this game but perhaps unlike AC Valhalla, I am looking forward to more. This is what distinguishes the two titles for me, and why this was my favorite game experience of 2020.

2. Assassin's Creed Valhalla
This game continues the history tourism meets templar conspiracy action-adventure formula of Odyssey and Origins and provides extremely satisfying gameplay and narrative experiences. Great characters. Great side-quests. An intriguing main story with some lovely dovetailing between Norse mythology and that of the AC universe. An extremely absorbing all-around experience that kept me entertained for 95 hours.

3. Cloudpunk
A very relaxing delivery/taxi game in a beautifully realized cyberpunk world with 5th element flying cars, intriguing and well-written characters, and a decent core storyline that engages throughout. Light on gameplay and no combat to speak of but this is nonetheless one of the more notable experiences for me this year and was definitely the title that most exceeded my expectations.
4. Wasteland 3
A huge upgrade on Wasteland 2 in all regards. So many choices and branching narrative moments that really give a personalized weight to the path you take. Excellent and varied combat. Nice environments. Nice graphics. Very much a Fallout 1 & 2 meets XCOM vibe to things. Highly recommended.
5. Resident Evil 3
As the original RE3 was the inferior follow up to the original RE2, so it was the case for their remakes. CAPCOM would be very wise to stop with the remake treatment and to focus on new directions for the franchise. Overall a highly enjoyable product and well worth playing through several times.
6. Watch Dogs: Legion
Watch Dogs 1 bored me. Watch Dogs 2 made an impression but ultimately failed to engage me. Watch Dogs Legion kept me on board and mostly entertained through to the end. Being a former Londoner, the experience of exploring this game world was often nostalgic but also occasionally underwhelming (the amount of London that gets geographically represented is minimal). The ‘recruit anyone’ mechanic was pretty neat though and led to a range of diverse gameplay experiences. The lack of a primary character does detract from the player’s engagement with the narrative to some extent, and the character of Bagley (the AI sidekick) becomes the vehicle for the story. Solid game overall.
7. Vampire: The Masquerade - Shadows of New York
For those that played this game’s predecessor, “Coteries of New York”, “Shadows” feels like a substantial DLC add - on more than a totally independent title. I was slightly less absorbed with it, but on balance it is a delightful second dose.
8. Twin Mirror
A detective adventure game set in the Pacific Northwest with some interesting characters and decent dialogue. Unfortunately, this game is conceptually unoriginal, and the plot ultimately disappoints. Those with both the patience for a dialogue-heavy experience and the enthusiasm for a stylistic homage to Twin Peaks and Deadly Premonition (including a lead character that talks to themselves) may get some degree of enjoyment from the ambiance of the game. Twin Mirror makes this list at number 8 because I only played 8 games that were released this year. Overall ... not recommended.
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extintor

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  • Assassin's Creed Unity - What a story this game has, and I'm not referring to the in-game narrative (though that is quite good as well). I remember playing this on release and feeling like it was hot garbage, despite loving the series. Playing it this year was revelatory. It's so good. I can't even believe how good it is. It's one of the best AC games. I wish they'd have waited and fixed it before it was released so that it wouldn't have been so tarnished in the public eye.

I'm happy to read this. Having never tried it before, I'm about to start playing it on Series X where I've read that it holds a solid 60fps.

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extintor

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I'm happy with outcome. I wanted a calm, serious, and decent moderate who will be constructive with those that are not. This is who he appears to be.

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extintor

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#4  Edited By extintor

I thought Blade Runner 2049 had a phenomenal soundtrack (especially sea wall).

This fan-made music video resonates perfectly.

Loading Video...

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extintor

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#5  Edited By extintor

I just attended the most cyberpunk virtual lecture held by Chicago U's Sand Lab about how to interrupt and defeat the passive capture of our video, audio, and still images. Aside from having the clearest realization yet that we are, in fact, now living in a dystopic cyberpunk present, a couple of cool countermeasures were discussed that I thought I'd share with y'all.

The software available via the link below makes tiny changes to your photos so that any algorithm scanning those images in future does not identify the person in the image as you. Applying this filter to your photos before uploading them is is like adding an invisible mask to your digital identity.

https://sandlab.cs.uchicago.edu/fawkes/

Also FYI, in case you had any doubt, yes google and amazon are using your phone and alexa respectively to passively capture audio to direct advertising data and suggested search terms. The Sand Lab are also developing wearable jammers to block these https://sandlab.cs.uchicago.edu/jammer/

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extintor

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subscribing... this gave me nostalgic flashbacks to my Bradman 14 career experience which basically carried me through that year in games (2014 was not a vintage year).

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extintor

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#7  Edited By extintor

40 last year and my strongest memories from the era would be Goldeneye, Championship Manager, International Superstar Soccer, Civilization, Blade Runner, Grand Theft Auto, Turrican, Lemmings, Doom, Heretic, and Hexen.

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lol... you had me going up to about the third paragraph

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of those that I've played this year (that also came out this year), Cloudpunk made the biggest impression.

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@north6 said:

@extintor: Couldn't agree more, though I've been laid off, I very much felt this way beforehand. Still sort of feel that way. There's probably always something better to be doing than watching a stream. Nothing against GB.

Really sorry to hear that and best of luck to you. Agree it isn't anything against GB at all. We are all just trying to make it through this.