Jump to content

Your 2021 Gaming Diary

Recommended Posts

Oh wow, someone else actually played AI!

Funny that you used that screenshot. Because that conversation didn't really apply that well to me, because I'm too much of a Poké nerd to get caught out by that, so I put that question to other N-Europe members and most of them were caught out by it. It was kinda surreal seeing that effect happen.


I really liked the somnium for Ota's mother. Which I assume was one of the more sadder moments you were alluding to.

It was a cool way of depicting dementia that ended with a really touching moment. Probably my favourite moment of the game.


Edited by Glen-i
  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

After OOT I moved onto Ecco the Dolphin.

A few years ago I competed it once before, and while I enjoyed it, I used save states and always felt like I never really beat it.

This time, I decided to do it properly. I did use save states, but only at points where you can continue from using a password anyway. The game doesn't have a built in save system, each time you beat a level it gives you a password to type in to continue from that point. So all I gained was not having to type the password when I returned to the game.

A few days ago, after much difficulty (although I had a great time), I reached the final level, "Welcome to the Machine". The game's tough all the way through, but the final level is something else. You have 10 minutes of extreme difficulty, followed by a really tough boss. No checkpoints. You actually manage to reach the boss and mess up? Tough. Back to the machine!

Well, after many, many, MANY tries, I beat it tonight! YAY!...

Except no I didn't.

Sure, the boss's final defeated animation began playing. But I made the mistake of assuming I was safe. During the boss battle, lots of enemies spawn. There was still one around, and it proceeded to "jump" down and insta kill me and I didn't react in time. Back to The Machine. As Sonic has said in the past... SH...oot. I ran out of opportunity to play anymore today at this point, so I'll try again tomorrow. xD

After this I'm gonna play... Pokemon Shining Pearl. xD And if I don't manage to beat Ecco by the time of its release, I may very well save completing Ecco for a future me lol.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 2

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Finally got some time to actually play more than 30 minutes yesterday :p 

Got the final multiplayer trophy in Ace Combat 7 (play 50 Team Deathmatches). It was a lot of fun simply because the game is a lot of fun :D 
Now that there's no multiplayer trophy for me to acquire, I'll focus on the campaign. It has turned into some anime shit over the past few missions. And I mean that in a positive way. 
Shenanigans like an unknown fighter pilot who just wrecks your ass, a shit-ton of unmanned aircraft that wrecks your ass, a huge aircraft that deploys those UAVs and wrecks your ass. It's crazy :laughing: 

And I still can't get over that OST. It's ridiculously good.

Can't wait for the weekend to dive back into the campaign :) 

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Look Timmy, drahkon's about to talk about Ace Combat 7 again.

"Urgh, go away, I wanna sleep."


So this game's pretty fucking good :D Mission variety is surprisingly great. I mean, yes, you fly in an aircraft and do shooty shooty boom boom, but there have been:

  • a "stealth" mission (nothing too crazy, but it works really well)
  • escort missions (which are awesome here)
  • "destroy everything in sight"-missions
  • and more.

It's incredible.

I think I'm close to the end given how the story progressed in the last few cutscenes. I feel like there has to be some kind of big revelation soon. Something's just not right :p 

  • Like 2

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Timmy, wake the fuck up!

Just completed Ace Combat 7's campaign.
This was me during the final few missions:


It was my first Ace Combat game and definitely not my last. I've got the PS4 version of Ace Combat 5 ready to play and also some DLC missions for Ace Combat 7 left (all courtesy of the AC7 Deluxe Edition).

Some negatives about AC7:

  • it starts quite slow; not a huge deal once the pace increases, but at first it's a little annoying
  • a few story threads basically just start and immediately end; would've liked the plot to go a little deeper with certain aspects
  • AI squad mates are useless, quite literally; you must do everything which sometimes is a bit overwhelming

Those are minor niggles, though. They don't take away from the experience of a whole, which is simply put: pure video gaming bliss. My fifth 10/10 game this year :D 

Edited by drahkon
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, I'll break @drahkon's Ace Combat 7 streak... by talking about Ace Combat! I've played Ace Combat 2 on the original PlayStation dozens of times at a friend back in the days, and always loved it. The other game I played was Ace Combat Assault Horizon Legacy on the 3DS, and I really enjoyed that one as well. 3D worked proper in that game, and I just love a good dogfight.

Thinking back flight games are a type of games I enjoy, but rarely play (I have the same with rhythm games). But stuff like Ace Combat, Star Wars Rogue Squadron, the outer space parts in Starlink and Starfox, all great.

Ace Combat 7 has been on my Steam wishlist for a while, so I'm guessing next time it is on sale I'll go for it. How long did it take for you to get through the campaign @drahkon?

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Been a while since my last update and I've re-subbed to Game Pass since then too, so got quite a bit to add. :grin:

Slime Rancher:

A game where you go around vacuuming up various slime creatures (and their poos) in order to expand and upgrade the storage for even more slimes and consequently... more slime poos. :laughing: Yeah, weird game, but it was all very cute and also reminded me of Eledees on the Wii which I loved. Nothing spectacular about it really, but a nice game to relax with.


Psychonauts 2:

This one was a very nice surprise indeed. :o I'd previously made several attempts to play the original Psychonauts but struggled to get into it, no such problem with the sequel though, it was an absolute joy to play from start to finish!  :bouncy: Amazing presentation, very funny (it actually had me in tears at some points :laughing:) and the gameplay was really enjoyable too. Enjoyed it so much, in fact, that I even stuck with it post-credits to get all of the collectables for 100% completion. Wouldn't be at all surprised if this were to end up being game of the year.


Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales:

My addiction to Gwent continues! :heh: Yeah, I thought it would be cool to play a single player story based game built entirely around Gwent battles, but unfortunately I didn't do enough research before buying this, and it turned out that the gameplay was quite a bit different to standard Gwent. :blank: A lot of battles were actually puzzles to solve and even the standard games were confusing due to cards having the same appearance but changed abilities from the multiplayer game. I ended up playing through on easy and skipping a lot of battles as a result, but I got the game on sale and it unlocked lots of stuff for Gwent, so it wasn't a complete let-down. ::shrug:


The Forgotten City:

This caught my attention when browsing what was available on Game Pass one day and while not really my kind of game in terms of genre, I did still quite enjoy it. Managed to get 3 out of the 4 possible endings, but despite the developers streamlining the process whenever you restart, things just got too repetitive for me to go for the 4th. Very impressive how this game was made by a handful of people though. :bowdown: It is a bit rough around the edges but considering the nature of the game it's a fantastic achievement for such a small development team.


Zombie Army 4: Dead War:

Originally my Halloween game this year was going to be Back 4 Blood, which I did start playing but after a few missions in both single player and co-op I wasn't really enjoying it all that much. :hmm: Then I discovered this game and well, let's just say I never looked back. I found Zombie Army 4 to be infinitely more enjoyable, the style of the game is just so much better, the zombies, the humour, the way it plays, everything about it was super entertaining. It's like RE4's Mercenaries mode but on steroids! Really fun game. :cool:


Forza Horizon 5:

And last but certainly not least, Horizon 5, which I have been absolutely glued to recently. Initially the wow factor wasn't quite there, as it all felt very similar to Horizon 4, but the more I played, the better it got, and I have to say this is undoubtedly one of the best racing games ever! Super exhilarating stuff, I frequently get goose bumps during the more intense races! :eek: The sense of speed is frankly insane, the visuals are stunning and the gameplay is spot-on. It feels so good just to drive around.

The amount and variety of cars on offer is also truly impressive (500+ I believe) and I was not expecting to see things like the DMC DeLorian or the 1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am of Smokey and the Bandit fame! I particularly love how every car is potentially viable too thanks to the custom tuning system, you can even soup-up a Reliant Robin three-wheeler so it does over 200 Mph! :DJust good luck keeping it on the road.

It's not all turbocharged three-wheelers though :p there are some annoying bugs here and there, plus various issues with online play, and for a game set in Mexico an alarming lack of Mariachi. :angry: But yeah, everything else is just so great that it's easy to overlook the few negatives. I'll be playing this game for quite some time I reckon. :hehe:


Quick word on the Animal Crossing New Horizons v2.0 update, which has got me using my Switch and checking in on my island on a daily basis again. Such a fantastic update! There is so much new stuff to experience that it actually feels like paid DLC. Have been loving it. :love: As for the actual paid DLC (Happy Home Paradise) well I've not picked that up yet, but with how much there already is in the 2.0 update anyway I'm more than happy to wait a while. :)




  1.     Tetris Effect: Connected (PC)
  2.     Doom Eternal (PC)
  3.     Dragon Quest XI (PC)
  4.     The Medium (PC)
  5.     Yakuza 3 Remastered (PC)
  6.     UnderMine (PC)
  7.     Ring Fit Adventure (Switch)
  8.     Levelhead (PC)
  9.     Superhot: Mind Control Delete (PC)
  10.     Sea of Thieves (PC)
  11.     Doom (PC)
  12.     Monster Hunter Rise (Switch)
  13.     World of Demons (Apple TV)
  14.     The Wild at Heart (PC)
  15.     Just Cause 4 (PC)
  16.     Rain on Your Parade (PC)
  17.     Game Builder Garage (Switch)
  18.     Little Nightmares (PC)
  19.     Part Time UFO (Switch)
  20.     Pokémon Unite (Switch)
  21.     Rage 2 (PC)
  22.     Control (PC)
  23.     The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – Game of the Year Edition (PC)
  24.     Fist of the North Star LEGENDS ReVIVE (Mobile)
  25.     GWENT: The Witcher Card Game (PC/Mobile)
  26.     Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout (PC)
  27.     Slime Rancher (PC)
  28.     Psychonauts 2 (PC)
  29.     Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales (PC)
  30.     The Forgotten City (PC)
  31.     Zombie Army 4: Dead War (PC)
  32.     Forza Horizon 5 (PC)

Played for a while:

  •     Cyber Shadow (PC)
  •     Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair (PC)
  •     Yakuza 4 Remastered (PC)
  •     Wreckfest (PC)
  •     Taiko no Tatsujin Pop Tap Beat (Apple TV)
  •     Wonderbox: The Adventure Maker (Apple TV/Mobile)
  •     Clap Hanz Golf (Apple TV)
  •     Dragon Quest Builders 2 (PC)
  •     The Swords of Ditto: Mormo's Curse (PC)
  •     Darkest Dungeon (PC)
  •     A Plague Tale: Innocence (PC)
  •     Yooka-Laylee (PC)
  •     ReCore (PC)
  •     Back 4 Blood (PC)
  •     The Good Life (PC)
  •     Unpacking (PC)

Older games that I'm still playing regularly:

  •     Mario Kart Tour (Mobile)
  •     Animal Crossing: New Horizons (Switch)


  • Like 4
  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
21 minutes ago, Vileplume2000 said:

How long did it take for you to get through the campaign

Probably something between 10 and 12 hours.

Edit: just looked at the trophy list and not sure if I'll go for the Platinum. 3 more playthroughs at least :o Nah, I'll just play other games :D 

Edited by drahkon
  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, RedShell said:

Originally my Halloween game this year was going to be Back 4 Blood, which I did start playing but after a few missions in both single player and co-op I wasn't really enjoying it all that much. :hmm: Then I discovered this game and well, let's just say I never looked back. I found Zombie Army 4 to be infinitely more enjoyable, the style of the game is just so much better, the zombies, the humour, the way it plays, everything about it was super entertaining. It's like RE4's Mercenaries mode but on steroids! Really fun game.

I've always heard that 4 was the "number of death" in Japan, but this is ridiculous!

  • Haha 2

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Aaaaand Sackboy: A Big Adventure has reached its end.

What a great game. A marvelous platformer and such a fun time. Especially with friends :peace: Highly recommended.

Onto Spider-Man Miles Morales. Borrowed it from a mate and can't wait to dive in :D 

Edited by drahkon

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I know this is considered a "gaming" diary and mainly focused on playing games... but I found myself getting into modding recently. After all, a Smash game where you can add ANY character and stage to the game? Sign me up!


So I've been mainly working on making Yooka & Laylee as fighters for the game. This is my progress so far.



I took a break from that project to add a stage to Workshop that nobody had been done as it was a missing gap in the Workshop. I spent the entire day doing it and uploaded just the basic version with the Aether version to be uploaded later.




Then, awkwardly I found out someone had uploaded the same stage idea ONE DAY BEFORE ME!




So now there's two of them.


Either way, @Jonnas has a good reason to get Rivals of Aether now :p


  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Aperson said:

Either way, @Jonnas has a good reason to get Rivals of Aether now :p

Maybe once I start actually clearing my other fighting games :heh: It is tempting to play as the Freedom Planet cast in a fighting game, I must admit.

Gotta say, that Yooka&Laylee of yours looks really nice. Does the game already come with a modding tool?

Edited by Jonnas

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
36 minutes ago, Jonnas said:

Maybe once I start actually clearing my other fighting games :heh: It is tempting to play as the Freedom Planet cast in a fighting game, I must admit.

Gotta say, that Yooka&Laylee of yours looks really nice. Does the game already come with a modding tool?

It's... complicated let's just say...




I think Fraymakers that is coming out in the future will have an in built modding tool, will be interesting to see how that effects Rivals modding.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Been playing Spider-Man Miles Morales for a few hours today.

Apparently 60% done with everything, if the number from the save slot is accurate.

So far, it's been awesome. Traversal is as fun as ever and combat feels smooth and satisfying. Insomniac Games are too good at making games.

  • Like 4

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Finished Spider-Man Miles Morales

It. Was. Awesome. :D 

Just need New Game+ and two miscellaneous trophies for the Platinum and I'll gladly play it again. So much fun from start to finish. :peace: Gonna play on Ultimate to get that extra challenge out of NG+.

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

And there it is:


Spider-Man Miles Morales is now 100% complete :D 

10/10. An absolute marvel. Yes, I'm the first one to make that pun.

With some heavy playtime in Super Auto Pets (a cute, casual Auto battler) my game tally is now up to 46 in 2021 (well, 44 'cause I stopped playing two games :p).

  • Like 3

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Gnosia (Switch):


I found this visual novel oddly addictive with a gameplay mechanic that sounds strikingly similar to a particular popular multiplayer game (hint: an anagram of “Umong As”).

The gameplay loop seems simple enough at first, with a handful characters on a spaceship, at least one of whom is an imposter (I.e., infected by the Gnosia). Each round, one character gets voted out, and each game is won or lost when either all imposters have been voted out or if imposters outnumber the crew. At which point, win or lose, you’re transported to the beginning of a new loop, with all roles reset.

The initial games quite exciting as new characters were constantly being introduced, and they do a good job of keeping all the characters different from one another, both in appearance and personality. New gameplay mechanics are introduced as you play more games, the first few in particular influence how you approach each game, such as new roles (e.g., the engineer can check out one character each round to see if they’re infected or not).

There are a lot of other nuances within the game, such as improving your stats in areas such as becoming better at getting others to trust your opinions, or identifying where others are trying to deceive you. You can build relationships with other characters between rounds and trying to achieve certain outcomes enables you to learn more about the background of each character and, ultimately, progress the story.

I liked that each loop tends to be quite short, maybe 5-10mins each time. The early game for me was the most exciting part, with the mystery unravelling. Unfortunately for me, the game eventually becomes a bit of a grind once you’ve unlocked the characters. I went through over 100 loops in order to advance the story, and while the story was interesting, I don’t think it is strong enough to keep most people interested over an extended period of time.

Glad I played it. The initial couple of hours were fun & exciting as the mystery began to get explained. For me the grind was somewhat tedious come the end, and could’ve done with speeding up how you unlock the final third of the story. Good - I wasn’t dissatisfied with my experience.

  • Thanks 2

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Never heard of Gnosia, but the concept sounds interesting… might have to check it out :) 

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I remember seeing Gnosia on a Nintendo Direct once. One of the crewmates (and potential imposters) is a dolphin, right?

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

So... I reckon Resident Evil Village will win the 2021 Game of the Year tonight. :eek:

Would you like that to happen? Lady Dimitrescu counts on it. :heart:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Rivals of Aether's adventure mode is finally complete.


I didn't quite understand how I was supposed to beat the Final Boss and it just sort of happened after hitting both eyes at some points so I guess I was supposed to stun it? I don't know... but anyway its finished.


I also finished my mod for it, Yooka and Laylee are now live in Steam Workshop as playable fighters.




I then went and resized them due to feedback that they were too small.


Still, this big indie game obsession reminded me that there's still one indie game I never finished... Super Meat Boy. Unfortunately I'm having to start again from the very beginning of the game but made rapid progress and now on the Chapter 2 boss, C.H.A.D. I'm also making a concerted effort to try and do the Dark World this time around as much as possible, though will prioritise the main campaign over getting too much of the extra levels.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Right, time to catch up with my (mostly) completed games before I finish one which I want to dedicate a whole post to.

First of all, quick and easy link to a review I did.

  Pokémon  Brilliant Diamond  and  Shining Pearl  


 N-Europe  Review

Cool, now some older gaff.


Sin & Punishment was originally a Japan exclusive N64 title made by Treasure in 2000. It eventually made it's way over here on the Wii Virtual Console in 2007. But it took until the recent Switch Online Expansion Pak for me to finally play through it. It's a rail shooter that employs an... interesting control method to grant analog aiming that's independant from character movement on a controller with only one control stick.

The game follows Saki, I think? He and his group of friends are fighting against some mutated creatures, I think? Also blood is important, somehow? Yeah, I have no clue what actually happens, but it's a Treasure game. Just run through levels, make everything go BOOM, and it'll all work out in the end.

Luckily, that aspect of the game is solid. There's a bit of a learning curve with the unorthodox controls (The D-Pad moves Saki, the control stick moves the aiming reticle, L button jumps) and the game is quite punishing at times, even on Easy difficulty. Expect Game Overs, because you'll get loads of continues anyway. While I much prefer the control method of the Wii sequel, pointer trumps stick aiming any day, the game doesn't get as crazy as the sequel, so the stiffer aiming is compensated for.

Not much else to say, it's a proper fun arcade shooter. If you have the expansion pak (And an N64 controller), give it a go, but maybe play the tutorial first.



Mario Tennis. You know what it is, I know what it is. I beat the Star Cup in Singles and Doubles, which unlocks both of the secret characters, so I count that as completed. NEXT!

I went back to Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity to play the DLC that was released recently, the thing is, my overpowered Level 100 death machines were too powerful for me to really enjoy the much lower level story chapters. So I started again. Trust me, people have wasted far more time restarting BotW. The game is still as much fun as it was at release. That combat is just oh so satisfying. Anyway, got 100% again, including the DLC stuff!



The recommended level was 93. I ain't got time for that. I was 3 seconds away from running out of time though.

Anyway, enough of games I enjoy. Let's talk about Metroid Dread.


I love Metroid games, they really can do no wrong as far as I'm concerned, at least until this game. Metroid Dread makes me sad, because I know it's a well made game, the movement feels so good! But those damn E.M.M.I's suck all the fun out of it. It got to the point that I booted up the game, play 5 minutes of Metroid, then spend the next hour trying to get past an E.M.M.I and dying over and over again. It stopped being fun and I never got to the second boss.

Bad games I can live with, great games ruined by one aspect are utterly depressing. I just youtubed the cutscenes, which I've never done before.

Anyway, not gonna end on a down note.


It's the closest I'm getting to playing Kingdom Hearts on Switch...

Yes, I'm still salty about the collections being cloud versions... KH3 I can understand, but the Switch could totally handle the collections...

Anyway, I played through World of Light in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate again, with some restrictions.

  • Only DLC characters allowed. (Piranha Plant onward)
  • No spirits from series that never got a DLC character
  • Each Character can only use spirits from their series
  • Resetting all of the adventure skills at the start of the playthrough
  • Each character rescued allows me to restore one adventure skill

This provided a weird dynamic. Because I limited myself to matching characters with their spirits, it meant that each character had a role. Piranha Plant was my go to when status effects were in play, unless it was poison, because Banjo was basically invincible in poison thanks to the Gruntilda spirit, and so on.

Anyway, when it came to the final boss, there was only one choice of character.



Galeem and Dharkon just couldn't get along, so I showed them how a proper buddy duo does things! It's, like, symbolic and junk.

Anyway, I took that screenshot yesterday, and now we know when Banjo-Kazooie is getting added to Switch. Coincidence?


Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3
Kingdom Hearts: Melody of Memory
Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX (100%)
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity (100%)
Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4
Tony Hawk's Underground
Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury
Bravely Default II
Shining Force: The Legacy of Great Intention
Monster Hunter Rise (Credits seen)
Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble (105%)
Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin
The Legend of Banjo-Kazooie: The Jiggies of Time
The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask (Randomiser)
Pokémon FireRed
Final Fantasy I Pixel Remaster
Final Fantasy II Pixel Remaster
AI: The Somnium Files
Dicey Dungeons
Yakuza 0 (Abandoned)
Super Mario World
Tetris Effect: Connected
WarioWare: Get it Together!
Deltarune: Chapter 2
Super Mario 64 (16 Stars)
The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles

Pokémon Shining Pearl
Sin & Punishment (Easy)
Mario Tennis
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity (100% again + DLC)
Metroid Dread (Abandoned)
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate: World of Light (DLC only)


  • Thanks 3

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Bit late with my November update and there are only a couple of games to talk about, I covered the first few that I completed last month in my previous post. To kick off I played through Super Monkey Ball Banana Mania on Switch, I loved the first game on Gamecube back in the day but most of my time with the game was spent on the party games (mostly Monkey Target) so I'm not sure if I ever truly conquered the main game. Well, twenty years later and I still can't say I have conquered the main game, I played through both the story mode and the challenge mode but ran into issues with several levels, some of which I was able to finish by putting Assist Mode on but there were a few that I couldn't manage even with the extra time and ability to slow things down so I simply marked them as cleared to move onto the next stage. I'm regretting tackling story mode first, the lacklustre presentation forgoing the old cutscenes in favour of confusing slideshows was disappointing but when it came to actually playing the levels it just didn't feel like classic Monkey Ball at all. I felt more at home in the challenge mode but playing through that after the story mode meant that I had essentially already seen all of the levels that were on offer, which was a bit of a let down. It definitely wasn't the triumphant return I was hoping for, I think in future if I ever feel like scratching that Monkey Ball itch I'll just fire up the Gamecube original instead. 

Next up I finally played through Ori and the Blind Forest. I had picked it up on Switch almost as soon as it was released but for some reason or another I didn't get around to it until now. First impressions were very strong, the beautiful art style and animations immediately catching the eye and the gentle piano score seemed similarly on point. Initial stages of a Metroidvania are, by their nature, a bit slow and stiff but as you uncover more of Ori's moveset and abilities control becomes much more fluid and enjoyable. The upgrade system is an interesting one for the genre, adopting more of an RPG style in addition to the usual collectable ability upgrades, but I don't feel like it was implemented as effectively as it could have been. In terms of gameplay I was surprised at how challenging it was, I expected it to be much more about the narrative than the challenge and at times it felt more akin to something like Celeste. I definitely became frustrated on more than a few occasions but much of that irritation could have been eradicated if there was a quicker way to reset to the last checkpoint, there were numerous times when I knew I wouldn't be able to complete a challenge but simply had to kill Ori to start over, leading to my death counter ending up way higher than it needed to be. In the end I enjoyed my time with the game enough to want to check out the sequel though, and it's port to the Switch has to be applauded, I know it's 'only a 2D game' but it doesn't seem to be compromised in any way compared to the original release (which I didn't realise was all the way back in 2015, I thought it was much more recent than that...)

Finally I rounded out November by playing through Yoshi's Story on the Switch N64 app. I played through Yoshi's Island a couple of year back and didn't really get what the fuss was about, it was nice to look at but I never really bought in to the charm enough to be able to enjoy the gameplay. Yoshi's Story adopts a polygonal interpretation of the storybook artstyle which I feel works for the most part but the most notable change is in the games level progression. It's a little disappointing that the game only allows you to play through 6 of the 24 levels in a single play through, I would have liked to play through all that was on offer in one go but with my limited time I'll have to suffice with just experiencing 6 levels for now. The way you complete each level also took a bit of getting used to, with a platformer you expect to negotiate the challenge of each level on the way to a definitive goal but Yoshi's Story instead tasks you with eating fruit until Yoshi is satisfied enough to move on. It gives the levels a more open ended feel that encourages exploration but does leave things feeling a bit too formless at times. There are boss fights to mix things up, culminating in a battle with Baby Bowser, but they're obviously pretty trivial to navigate. I really enjoyed the little storybook sections after completing each world though, the accompanying music being my favourite aspect of the game, so I think I personally prefer this to Yoshi's Island.

Currently trying to wrap my head around the complex systems of Outer Wilds, with plans to get around to the Castlevania Advance Collection once I've unravelled the mysteries of the Nomai. 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a bit behind on write-ups, so here are a few:

TimeSplitters 2


Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy this game as much as I remember. I think it’s in an odd place of feeling very dated, but also lacking something simple about what makes GoldenEye or Perfect Dark still incredibly fun to play.

TimeSplitters 2 still has great ideas, and the different settings in time are still wonderful, but there’s just something off. Possibly due to how disconnected they all feel, as Cortez turning into a character only visually happens in one level, and other levels include characters with motivations. I still think the Chiago level is great on its own, but it really does feel like its own thing and there’s no flow. I think one issue with the objectives in this is that the levels still feel like linear corridors.

When it came out, TimeSplitters 2 was a brilliant game, but it was early on in that generation of consoles, and the genre changed significantly throughout.


TimeSplitters Future Perfect


While I thought that TimeSplitters 2 didn’t age that well, I had an extremely enjoyable experience with Future Perfect, due to its extremely humorous and enjoyable story.

I never realised how many jokes and references were in the game when I first played Future Perfect, and it’s nice to have a time travel story that’s just having a ton of fun with the concept without thinking too much about it. In the first main level, you encounter a locked door when you from the future passes you the key. Later on, you find your past self and give the key back to yourself. There are instances in most levels where your past and future selves interact, letting you play a set piece from different perspectives.

The main character – Cortex – has much more of a personality this time, as he stays as himself in this game, interacting with characters in each time zone. The voice acting and dialogue is very entertaining to listen to, and the levels themselves have some fun settings.

The levels don’t have the same objective structure as TimeSplitters 2, instead you progress a bit at a time. There are still objectives to complete, it’s just that you can’t get much further through the level without completing it. One level has some stealth segments, but if you mess up, you can still shoot your way through everyone. Because of this, the objectives, while not presented in the same way, feel much more dynamic and part of the level itself.

As with TimeSplitters 2, there’s also a lot of challenges, multiplayer modes and mapmaker stuff to keep yourself busy with.


The Artful Escape


A very surreal game. The Artful Escape follows the story of a folk musician who wants to do rock and roll, but doesn’t want to disappoint his town, who expects him to fit into the shoes of his uncle, a legendary folk singer. He gets whisked into space and ends up in a performance across the universe and some wonderful characters who try to convince him to become his “true self”.

On his journey, he will play music across wild and unique lands. These consist mainly of fairly simple platforming segments, but the visual spectacle of each level is enough to keep your attention. There’s lots of creative stuff to see, and it is a thoroughly enjoyable experience.


Exo One


A game with very unique movement. You play as a strange alien spaceship – created by humans after aliens sent the designs to them following a failed space expedition resulting in the loss of lives.

The “ship” is a ball with the unique ability of increasing gravity for itself, using this you can increase your momentum as you jump over hills to get to the next strange alien tower, which slingshots you to the next planet. Another ability is a temporary glide, as the ship squishes itself into a disk to allow for increasing your jumps. It feels really odd at first, but as you get used to it, you can get some amazing height and speed.

The game features a “found footage” look and is extremely stylish, with some vast levels that look phenomenal, and some really fun ideas for planets. It’s not a long game, but is a really unique and interesting experience.


Ori and the Blind Forest


Sadly, this was not a nice experience to play. It looks brilliant, and plays fantastically, but has one really massive flaw: enemies and obstacles blend in with the background and are extremely difficult for me to see. I couldn’t find a lot online about other people having the issue, so I presume it’s a colourblind issue.

As a result of this, I died a lot, and ended up using most of my energy on saving the same (you can save at any point by placing down a marker).

It’s a shame as the graphics are quite beautiful (when I can make them out), and the movement is really fluid. There’s a Pixar-like charm to the story and the abilities are a lot of fun. I pushed through with the frustrations mainly because I hoped that the second game wouldn’t have the same issues.

There’s a really good game hidden here, it’s just that I literally can’t see it.

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Cube said:

Ori and the Blind Forest

Sadly, this was not a nice experience to play. It looks brilliant, and plays fantastically, but has one really massive flaw: enemies and obstacles blend in with the background and are extremely difficult for me to see. I couldn’t find a lot online about other people having the issue, so I presume it’s a colourblind issue.

It is not, as I know exactly what you mean. I'm not colourblind, and I had the same issues as you did when I played the game last year. I kept dying because I had a very hard time spotting the thorns scattered through the game (like in this post).

Even in that picture, the spikes are close to the same shade of brown as the floor. Literally, the only thing bringing those to my attention is that they're on an elevated rock.


Anyway, it's been a while since I posted here, mostly because I haven't been "finishing" new stuff. Nevertheless, there's stuff to mention:

  • I have recently completed a Normal Mode Speedrun of Metroid Dread. Managed to shave off some 21 mins off of the Hard Mode run (turns out, difficulty doesn't change enmy health, only how much damage they hit you for), and so that game is officially Completed in my book;
  • The Portuguese Smash Bros community returned to having in-person tourneys recently (though they're not returning to their old schedule until at least after Christmas) and I'm kind of proud of my performance. I didn't reach far at all on that local tourney, but I managed to actually win games against the top players, and that's not nothing! Looking forward to polishing my Incineroar even further (and maybe one day I'll muster the guts to use the Ice Climbers in a tourney);
  • Dicey Dungeons is a fun game I've been picking up from time to time, but I figure I'll not finish it until 2022. Nevertheless, I should mention it at least once in the 2021 thread;
  • Bravely Default II is, sadly, a victim of my own neglect. It's been a solid game so far, but it has been on hiatus for a few months now. I'll pick it back up soon enough, but for now, I have to lament my spreading my attention through several other games.

One 2021 game I did start and complete in December is:

If on a Winter's Night, Four Travelers


Yes, that's the full title. Not even an ellipsis

Released in September 2021, and brought to my attention on an Easy Update episode (thank you, Isla!), I checked the Steam storefront and wouldn't you know it, this game is actually free! It was made by two people in Germany (the entirety of the developer, Dead Idle Games), and it feels like a labour of love. Much like Doki Doki Literature Club, they're following the model of "just play our game, and if you want to support us, purchase the DLC pack". And honestly, I think I will, because even the price of the pack (3,29€) feels low for how good the game is.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. IOAWN,FT is a story-driven, point&click adventure game that focuses mostly on telling a largely linear story with a sombre, creepy atmosphere. The main premise is that, in 1929, four travelers meet on a masked ball in the middle of a train ride, and each one tells a story of how they got there. Also, the train is obviously the afterlife.

It sports pixel art that's at home with Point&Click titles of the early 90s, and it is great at it. The music is mostly made up of period pieces (some of which are public domain), and it complements the stories really well. The sound design is great as well, a good quiet game allows sound effects to both set the mood and be part of the storytelling. The story itself, as I implied, deals with heavy themes, and I think it does a good job at it, even when things get esoteric. I found it to be well written.

Gameplay-wise, it's a straightforward point&click adventure, but it does that really well, with decent enough depth in exploration (a.k.a. for those who click all the things) and doing a good job in rewarding player interaction, while still making it clear on how to proceed through the story and never falling prey to obtuse pixel hunting (in fact, there are a few moments where the player character will actively point out smaller objects on the screen). And there's still room for a decent number of old-school puzzles, which is great.

It's a very short game (roughly... two hours, I'd say, maybe less), but it's the right length for a game to be played on a quiet winter afternoon. Funny that the most Halloween-apt game I played all year ended up being played near Christmas (and to be fair, Winter is the best time for the most sombre stories).


  My 2021 log (Hide contents)



-Fire Emblem: Three Houses (2019) Beat (January 9th)

-Fatal Fury Special (1993) No Goal (January 17th)

-Art of Fighting 2 (1994) No Goal (January 19th)

-Samurai Shodown II (1994) No Goal (January 20th)

-The Last Blade (1997) No Goal (January 22nd)

-Real Bout Fatal Fury 2 - The Newcomers (1998) No Goal (January 22nd)

-King of Fighters 2000 (2000) No Goal (January 23rd)

-King of Fighters 2002 (2002) No Goal (January 23rd)

-Samurai Shodown V Special (2004) No Goal (January 23rd)

-Harmo Knight (2012) Beat (January 25th)

-Furi (2016) Completed (January 31st)

-Life is Strange (Episode 1) (2015) Beat (February 13th)

-The Stanley Parable (2013) Completed (February 14th)

-1979 Revolution: Black Friday (2016) Beat (February 17th)

-Azure Striker Gunvolt (2014) Beat (March 6th)

-Hitman: Blood Money (2006) Completed (March 10th)

-A Short Hike (2019) Completed (March 16th)

-ABZÛ (2016) Beat (March 20th)

-Silence (2016) Completed (March 27th)

-Huniepop 2: Double Date (2021) Completed (April 13th)

-Horned Knight (2021) Completed (April 14th)

-Inspector Zé e Robot Palhaço em: Crime no Hotel Lisboa (2013) Completed (April 18th)

-Munin (2014) Completed (April 25th)

-As Aventuras Interactivas de Dog Mendonça e Pizzaboy (2016) Completed (April 27th)

-Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light (1990) Completed (May 8th)

-Castlevania II Belmont's Revenge (1991) Completed (May 20th)

-Beautiful Desolation (2020) Beat (May 30th)

-Kid Dracula (1990) Completed (June 5th)

-Castlevania Bloodlines (1993) Beat (June 5th)

-Dr.Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine (1993) Completed (June 6th)

-Ristar (1995) Beat (June 13th)

-Nights into Dreams (1996) Beat (June 20th)

-Shantae: Risky's Revenge (2010) Beat (July 4th)

-Double Dragon Neon (2012) Beat (July 18th)

-A Boy and His Blob (2009) Completed (August 19th)

-Steamworld Heist (2015) Completed (September 5th)

-Master Spy (2015) Beat (October 7th)

[-Metroid Dread (2021) Beat (October 17th)]

-INSIDE (2016) Completed (October 31st)

-Claire (2014) Beat (November 6th)

-Metroid Dread (2021) Completed (December 8th)

-If on a Winter's Night, Four Travelers (2021) Completed (December 12th)



-Perfect Angle (2015) (January 20th)

-Codename S.T.E.A.M. (2015) (May 16th)

-Castlevania - The Adventure (1989) (May 19th)

-Sonic 4: Episode I (2010) (June 7th)

-Sonic 4: Episode II (2012) (June 7th)

-Puzzle & Dragons Z + Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition (2015) (June 10th)

-Adventure Bar Story (2012) (July 20th)

-Super Metroid Randomizer (???)  (September 18th)

Knowing me, this might be the last new game I finish in 2021... but we'll see. I'd like to sneak one more entry before the year's end.

Edited by Jonnas
  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites