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Everything posted by Cube

  1. The best announcement for me was Horizon DLC ..until they announced that they're screwing over PS4 players. Hopefully E3 next year can bring back the old trend of showing off game footage.
  2. Quickly browsed through some stuff while making a bottle for Ollie, doesn't seem like anything worth paying attention to.
  3. https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2022/01/18/welcoming-activision-blizzard-to-microsoft-gaming/ For $70 billion. Still needs to be finalised, but they're sure enough to officially announce it. The industry becomes more and more monopolised. That said, Microsoft can probably massively improve working conditions for the staff.
  4. Your Gaming Diary 2022

    Sonic Frontiers While the focus on Sonic Frontiers is on the open world - or open zone as Sega call it - I think it’s worth taking a look at the more traditional levels first. The disappointing thing about these are the themes, they take a few level themes from older games (including the much repeated Green Hill Zone and Chemical Plant Zone) as a basis for the levels, I would have much preferred if they just used the theme of the current island instead. At the very least, each individual level has its own unique (and really solid) music. That said, the levels are still fun to play. They are a bit simple with only a few branching paths and don’t reach the height of Sonic Generations or Colours, but they’re still a ton of fun to play. Some levels focus on specific gimmicks while others are a bit more traditional. With these levels alone, Sonic Frontiers would be a pretty good game. But, the main bulk of the game is the open zone islands, something that sounded like it could easily go very wrong, especially if they don’t get Sonic’s movement’s right. Luckily, they did a great job. Sonic went where I wanted him to go, and turning was incredibly easy. Running around enemies is extremely easy, which ties into Sonic’s new power where he can draw a shape to hurt enemies or activate objects inside. I do wish that Sonic’s starting speed was much faster. Towards the end of the game (with my speed levelled up to around 25 out of 99), it felt amazing, but this really needed to be the starting point. Each island consists of collectables, challenges, levels, story missions and fishing. The collectibles are “memory tokens”, used to progress the story and unlock little side cutscenes. Most of these are found by completing mini levels on floating platforms (although some are nicely integrated into the world itself). There are a lot more than you need to unlock everything, so they’re more of something to find on the way between everything else and not something you have to painfully track down one by one. The floating platforms that these are made from do have major pop-in issues - although it does seem to be managed in a smart way where parts you need to work out a route to an object are visible. I feel like they could have added a “cyber” animation to these objects to make them seem like they’re being generated by cyberspace instead of just popping in, Challenges help unlock the map, some are little puzzles, some are timing challenges, some are time trials (which are like mini levels integrated into the world) and some make use of specific powers. They’re fun to discover and do. One kind I did find odd is one where you have to parry objects, as to parry you just need to hold down the button, there’s no timing, but these challenges were definitely designed with timing in mind, so I think they changed the parry system fairly late on in development. Story missions are…quite bad. They’re a bunch of mini games that involve herding, pinball and a hacking minigame which is a very simple Ikaruga-inspired 2D space shooter. These could have been missing and nobody would care. Fishing is an optional extra and is nice and relaxing, although it seems like way too much effort has gone into the rather detailed fish models - and there are a lot of different fish. Combat is a lot of fun. With the cyloop opening up enemies for attack and a lot of special moves to perform. There’s also an option to perform these automatically (at the cost of slightly reduced damage) if you prefer to button mash instead. Each enemy also has specific ways to deal with them and their design is a clue as to how to defeat them. In the open zone there are also “guardians” to fight - large bosses which feel like full on bosses from other Sonic games. These are an absolute delight and it’s very surprising that they work well in the open world as they feel like full on set pieces. The final boss of each island is also spectacular - although the final boss is downright awful, nothing more than a quick time event. There are some parts of the open world that feel like a mini level, parts like long underground tunnels or other small sections. These parts are brilliant, and I really hope the next game focuses more on this - having levels built into the open world itself is a great way to go about expanding on the formula. I really hope Sega builds upon Sonic Frontiers instead of their usual method of ditching something and trying something new. Overall, I absolutely loved Sonic Frontiers, and while the standard levels aren’t quite Sonic Generations, I do rate this as Sonic’s best 3D game.
  5. The Traitors

    Classic mafia tic tac.
  6. Did Terk from Disney's Tarzan murder DK and replace him?
  7. Sonic Frontiers

    Started this over the weekend, finished the first island and onto the second. Loving it so far. The most surprising thing to me is just how well Sonic controls, and how easy it is to turn around and move in a small area. They're by far the best 3D Sonic controls. The open world is a lot of fun, with lots of stuff to find and neat little challenges, although some mini-games are a bit random. The bosses in the open world are great. The zone levels are fine. There's a few different routes, but nothing too complicated. The biggest issue with them is just the visual theme of the level, some more variety would be very nice. I think even using the same theme as the island itself would be fine and more coherent. It does seem a bit like a mix of ideas, but it's an immense joy to play and I hope they refine it in the future and don't do Team Sonic's usual method of ditching something and trying something completely different.
  8. Your Gaming Diary 2022

    Let's Build A Zoo A 2D pixelated zoo management game. It starts off great, with lots of systems to work out and a small amount of animals to work out pens for. There’s a lot of stuff to unlock, and even good/bad choices you can go though. Good choices are mainly about renewable energy, while the bad choices are about exploiting your zoo and animals by farming. There’s also genetic splicing and breeding as you try to find all variants of each. Where the game falls apart is that it starts to slow down. New animals will start to become very rare (even though I had unlocked less than half of them) and I found myself putting it on fast forward for hours just waiting for new things to do. No Man's Sky Second attempt at trying this. There is some fun stuff about the game, and some lovely sights, but it still has the main big issue as last time I tried it: before long you just learn the patterns of planets and animals, and it takes all the fun out of new discoveries once you notice these patterns. 80 Days A really fun choose-your-own adventure where you have to make it around the world in 80 days. It's based heavily on the bizarre and wonderful style of the world in the Jules Verne book. The first time round, I took a fairly traditional route across trains, things were going well until a boat I was taking to America decided to detour and my mutiny attempt failed, leading to a massive setback. I somehow missed all of the bizarre stuff and went past the 80 days (what’s nice is that you can still continue your journey). The second time, I went via the north pole and encountered loads of marvellous machines, and multiple hidden cities and societies. It was a lovely adventure and I had over two weeks to spare. Return to Monkey Island Monkey Island is back (again)! I really like what they did with this one, with similar style of puzzles and lots of great dialogue (I really recommend turning on the extra lines in the options - the “director’s cut”). The graphics - which looked odd in trailers - are surprisingly very beautiful and the game looked fantastic at all times. It addresses the fairly terrible ending of Monkey Island 2 in a clever way, while also being a sequel to all the Monkey Island games. It was nice that they didn’t discard the other stuff. One thing it does extremely well is the hint system. For other point and click games, I've been using a website that provides "hint guides" that point you in the right direction instead of telling you specifically what to do. The hint system here does the same, and can provide clues without ruining the experience (unless you keep drilling down into it and it eventually gives you the answer). The one let down is the ending. It’s one of those where you can tell it's going to be a let down, but it’s still a let down when you get to it. It’s not quite as bad as the Money Island 2 one, but is still a bit of a sour note to end on. There Is No Game: Wrong Dimension A very strange game about a game that isn’t a complete game. You have to work out what to do by clicking on things to reveal objects to use in a point and click style. Along the way you end up in other games and have to solve puzzles from “outside” the game by sort of breaking the game and using objects from HUD elements to move into the game world. It’s a lot of fun with some crazy stuff happening (including a musical section). Sally's Law A cute puzzle-platformer. Each level you progress by jumping over gaps but - surprisingly - all the obstacles keep moving out of your way. You then re-do the level as another character who then has to solve puzzles and hit switches in order to remove obstacles before your previous character gets there (your movement is recorded, so it’s based on your exact performance). It’s a really nice mechanic.
  9. Baby Cube

    So it's been a long road, getting form there to here. The stint in ICU was agonisingly long for us, he had a failed excavation (he couldn't handle breathing after his ventilator was removed), but then was moved from the ventilator to the next step down in breathing support. He had a scan done, and the person who did a scan was "oh no" and seemed to think another surgery was needed soon. The doctors spoke to us next day and said it was as expected (he has a leaky valve due to his compressed coronary, the hope is that it will now heal over time). Last weekend he was moved from ICU to the next step down (called HDU), one of the doctors wanted to go very slow on weaning off the breathing support and said (not directly to us, to other doctors) that he'd probably be in the next step for weeks. A few days later, they took him off breathing support for pressure relief, he did so well that he never went back on. We're looking at potentially going home soon because he's doing so well now.
  10. Baby Cube

    Its getting close to baby Cube arriving, a bit sooner than expected. I'm excited but also terrified. He was diagnosed at the 20 week scan with a heart condition called TGA, this essentially means that his heart is not wired up correctly, where the oxygenated blood will just be pumped back into his lungs and not the rest of his body. While he's in the womb, babies have an open valve which allows the blood to mix. The first part of this treatment is to keep this open (first with medicine but 50% need a simple keyhole surgery) until he's ready for surgery (10-14 days), where they'll get to his heart and switch things around so it's all connected properly, then they'll keep an eye on him for a few more weeks. Most of the time, this is the only treatment he'll ever need for this condition. We've met quite a few members of the team that will be treating him (both at the hospital doing the C-section and the children's hospital) and they've given us a ton of confidence and we feel like he's in good hands My girlfriend has been on blood pressure tablets and the latest scans have shown that he's dropped down in size, so they've decided that he's coming out a bit early - within the next week. It's amazing what they can do to treat babies with this condition.
  11. Announced during the direct, Game Freak are developing a "core Pokémon RPG title" for Nintendo Switch - likely more than a year away though.
  12. Baby Cube

    He had his surgery today, it went well, now he's in ICU to start his recovery. The machine they were waiting for wasn't needed in the end, which is very good.
  13. Sonic Frontiers

    Supposedly sent to them form Sega, although I wonder if Sega expected IGN to do a bit more voiceover to explain stuff instead of just uploading them as is.
  14. Baby Cube

    Still waiting for surgery. They've had a lot of emergencies so his operation has been cancelled 4 times so far, it's just not safe to proceed without the equipment and staff available. Ollie is still fine at the moment. The doctors don't actually know why, with a coronary issue like this, he should be really ill, one of the staff members has encountered this situation once before (they've all been working for 20-25 years). Luckily, the procedures they plan on doing are things they have done. They have three things they can do, but they don't know which method they will used until they actually see his heart for themselves. Hopefully things calm down in the ICU so we can get seen.
  15. Baby Cube

    Unfortunately, the doctor is correct. He did reassure us that this surgery will be a lot less complicated than last time. They're keeping him in hospital until then, not because he needs the medical attention, but because he will get seen to sooner.
  16. Baby Cube

    So Ollie had a checkup today, the doctor was concerned about one of his arteries and has booked him in for a more in depth scan, which will be next week. If the doctor is correct, then it means another surgery to fix the issue. Even though it's not confirmed, we're absolutely devastated and are absolutely dreading the scan.
  17. Your Gaming Diary 2022

    My playtime says 12 hours, but due to having the game paused a lot (due to baby) I'd guess perhaps 8ish? It's a bit hard for me to judge playtimes at the moment.
  18. Your Gaming Diary 2022

    Tinykin A beautiful looking game. It’s obvious that the game is heavily inspired by Pikmin, as you control a bunch of tiny creatures and throw them to get them to do your bidding, but also very much its own thing as it's much more of a collectathon platformer. The game takes place inside a house where insects have gained sapience and worship the owner of the house, who hasn’t been seen for ages. You play as a tiny person trying to find out the origins of humanity and wind up in this strange house. A wise old insect has diagrams of a machine, but needs the parts to build it. It’s up to you - and the Tinykin to find these parts. Each level of the game is quite open to explore, but you’ll need Tinykin to progress and solve puzzles. There are four different types, including the default “strong” ones which move objects and ones that stack to help you reach higher places. The environment, and all the insect NPCs you talk to, are all incredibly charming. It’s a wonderful game. Deathloop A time loop first person shooter. The combat is really fun, which makes any repeated segments still fun, with different abilities and weapons to try out new approaches. The objective of the game is simple: kill eight targets all in one loop. The problem is that the targets are in different areas, and you can only go to one location at each time of day. So you need to investigate what each target is doing, and find out how to manipulate them so you can do one final run to eliminate them all. On top of this, there are weapons and abilities you can find to improve your armour, as well as find a resource that lets you “bind” them so you can keep them between runs. While I massively enjoyed it, I do think it held your hand a bit too much, giving you slightly too much help, especially with the final run. Cooking Simulator I honestly can’t tell if this is a really poorly made serious simulator or a completely humourless “broken physics” parody game. The first thing you’ll notice is how low the turn sensitivity is. It takes close to 30 seconds to do a full turn around and makes the whole game feel like you’re moving through jelly. The object is to cook dishes, which require lots of getting ingredients, cutting them, seasoning them and cooking them. Then placing them on a place. The cutting and plating, however, have virtually no control over them, so none of your meals end up looking nice - they’re just a mess of ingredients on a plate, and part of what makes it look like a “broken physics” game like Surgeon Simulator. The whole game is slow, buggy and a complete and utter mess. What makes it even worse is that the first choice on the modes to play is the DLC you need to buy, which the game doesn’t even say is DLC until you select pay and get taken to the payment page. You Suck at Parking A fun simple game. You have to drive through obstacle courses, then quickly park in the designated locations. The courses and obstacles get crazier and wilder as you progress. It’s a short but fun distraction. Although for such a simple game, it has an immense amount of cosmetic DLC - something like 12 different packs. On top of that, there’s a kind of “battle pass” as well which gets you rewards as you progress through the game (providing you paid for it). If you didn’t pay, the game tells you what you would have unlocked if you pay, a constant reminder that the player is nothing more than a commodity to the developers. Most of these paid additions are used in all the loading screens and menus as well.
  19. good stuff thread.

    All the best @nightwolf, you'll do great, and I hope you have a speedy recovery.
  20. I am hoping Hot Wheels makes it to GamePass. Super hot was on PS Now so I'm surprised it wasn't already on extra. Interesting game completely ruined by the obnoxious narrative.
  21. Star Trek Masturbatathon

    @Happenstance, have you listened to the Delta Flyers podcast? Going though it at the moment and it's great. The actors of Tom and Harry talking about each episode of Voyager - their thoughts and what they remember from from filming.
  22. Your Gaming Diary 2022

    Immortals: Fenyx rising The main thing I had heard about this was that it’s very inspired by Breath of the Wild, which is a good enough game to be inspired by. While this influence is undeniable, Fenyx Rising also feels like a completely different game at the same time. With the wings of Icarus, you can glide quite a long distance, navigating the world is very easy but also enjoyable. Another big focus is the combat, with different attack types and abilities to create fancy combos, such as juggling enemies in the air, it’s all extremely satisfying, with a lot of enemies to dodge around. The land is filled with puzzles, and each God you have to find has a great dungeon with its own unique mechanics - those parts felt more like a traditional Zelda than BotW. Accompanying this journey is something I didn’t expect: lots of really fun humour from the narrator Prometheus (who is constantly interrupted by Zeus). Everything about the game is just silly and fun, which really adds to its own charm. I really ended up loving Fenyx Rising a lot. Disney's Dreamlight Valley An Animal Crossing-like game from Disney from a mobile game developer sounds like a horrific thing…so I was really surprised as to how nice this game is. I wouldn’t say it does anything special, it’s just a really pleasant experience - and really nice at the moment as I’ve been able to play one handed while holding a baby. One thing in particular I love about Dreamlight Valley over games like Animal Crossing is the lack of time constraints - it sometimes feels in those games that there’s only so much you can do in a day until you’ve “maxed out”, while Dreamlight Valley feels like it doesn’t matter if you spend an entire day doing stuff or just a tiny bit at a time - it feels like you progress at your own pace. Most of the game is gathering resources, though farming, foraging and mining. These tasks deplete your energy bar, but luckily this isn’t like a mobile energy bar as you can refill by eating (usually there’s a fruit tree nearby) or by entering your home. You don’t even need to sleep, you just walk into your home and leave. Crops can take a varied amount of time to grow (a few minutes to 4 hours), with some crops needing to be watered multiple times. Mining and foraging spots respawn fairly quickly. You will do lots of cooking and crafting. Thankfully, there are no wait timers, just put all the stuff together and you get the results instantly. There are a lot of things to make - especially recipes - so a lot to experiment with if you like doing so. As the game is currently in early access, there are some bugs. Thankfully, I managed to complete all the quests without any breaking. The game also isn’t fully complete, with the main story not finished and a couple of characters not having their final quest. The promise is that these updates (with new characters and areas) will be free, with a kind of “battlepass” like system for some cosmetic stuff as their way of making money in the future.
  23. Xbox Series S | X Console Discussion

    Ni No Kuni Remastered has just been announced. Out on Game Pass today. And Deathloop is coming to Game Pass on 20th September
  24. It's the new name for the series, a translation of Ryū ga Gotoku, which has been the Japanese name since the start. This one and Like a Dragon: Ishin are spin-off games, but Yakuza: Like a Dragon was essentially Yakuza 7 and Like a Dragon 8 is the next main game.