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Thread: What are you playing? (2024 Edition)

  1. #26
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2006
    Location: Washington DC
    I recently finished Days Gone. I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of writing, and in addition to the impressive horde AI (being chased by 300+ zombies at once while maintaining a stable framerate is pretty cool) it's a good-looking game just in general, with some of the best facial animation I've seen in a AAA title. It's a little disappointing, then, that the gameplay is basically The Last Of Us transplanted into a cookie-cutter Ubisoft open world (complete with outpost markers), and that once I hit the 8-10 hour mark I'd experienced pretty much everything I'd be doing for the remaining 40ish hours it took to complete the story and sidequests. The story and characters were interesting enough to carry me through it, but I can't see myself replaying it anytime soon- the moment to moment gameplay is good, but it's just the same set of things over and over and over again.

    So, on to True Stalker, a standalone Stalker mod. Unlike most of the currently popular ones it is (a) story-focused, and (b) not trying to be an obnoxiously difficult survival sim, making it less Tarkov or DayZ and more like the original games. It has a massive UI facelift that I quite appreciate, and incorporates a bunch of gameplay additions from more modern mods that are generally light touch and appreciated, on top of new models, animations, and effects. I'm only a few hours in, but I've already run into some fun new Roadside Picnic esque anomalies and weird mutants; there's a lot of new content here besides the usual thirteen million new guns. I'm all the more excited for Stalker 2, but in the meantime this is so far a seriously impressive fan sequel.

  2. #27
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2002
    Location: Edmonton
    Quote Originally Posted by Sulphur View Post
    Edit: oh yeah, the Dreamcore demo. I saw those screenies on Steam, and I have all those hot bytes of data waiting to be spun up. Eventually. Might play it today even. I like the idea of liminal spaces, though I slightly dislike the zeitgeisty-ness of them because they follow on from the SCP craze, and it's not a very new idea. But as an experience mining the uncanny on its own terms, why not.
    I find the wiki kind of endearing, but Dreamcore I think is more heavily influenced by the Kane Pixels Backrooms videos (the way the camera tumbles to the floor and the title card are obvious tributes). It feels slick and confident and I was surprisingly engaged; normally with walking sims I get bored after a few minutes, but I played Dreamcore for a couple hours. Another thing it does really well is create tension through ambiguity. Many times I'd see a blurry shape at the end of a long corridor and assume it was something malevolent, only for it to resolve as another doorway or a plant as I got close.

  3. #28
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Location: The Plateaux Of Mirror
    Quote Originally Posted by Sulphur View Post
    I think I last saw that, and its sequel, when I was 12. I have good memories of the first one - might be time to dig out those nostalgia goggles and have myself a rewatch.
    The sequel is bad, but I like the original quite a bit. Ron Howard is kind of an underrated director I think. I wouldn't put him on the level of the greats, but I think I've enjoyed nearly every movie he's made. Out of the flood of sudden revival racing movies the one he made, that arguably started the trend (Rush), is easily the best one.

    Edit: Maybe I should put him on that level, at least as a craftsman. Splash, Cocoon, Willow, Parenthood, Backdraft, Apollo 13, A Beautiful Mind, Rush. I should probably go watch the other stuff I've never seen like Frost/Nixon.

    Edit 2: I keep seeing those screens you've been posting of Dreamcore on Steam, Aja, and it looks amazing.

  4. #29
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2001
    Location: the Sheeple Pen
    I've also been playing some Cocoon, but it's not really my cup of tea, I suppose. It looks pretty cool and some of the puzzles are quite satisfying, but I think it's all too "abstract" for me. I don't really care about the little bug or the game world at all. It feels like I'm just doing one puzzle after another, without understanding what I'm actually supposed to do and why.

    The new game in the SteamWorld series, SteamWorld Build, is alright. I've loved all the previous Steamworld games (apart from Steamworld Quest that was merely okay) so my expectations were quite high. SteamWorld Build is a city builder game that doesn't really bring anything new to the genre, apart from a rather unique setting with the steam-powered mining bots and their funny machines. I haven't played any city builder game for years, but this one is very simple and you'll learn the rules as you play. Or actually, I'm still not certain how everything is supposed to work, but it doesn't seem to matter. Playing Steamworld Build is quite a relaxing experience, and you can't do much wrong, at least not on the normal difficulty.

    I don't even know why I like Steamworld Build as much as I do. There's something quite satisfying about its simple gameplay loop that keeps me going. I wish the little steambots and their fun personalities played a bigger role in the game though, but apart from some short text dialogue here and there, you barely even notice them. All the buildings and the machines are very steamworldy though. The gameplay is starting to feel a bit too repetitive after around 10 hours in, and so far I've only played one of the five different maps in the game. I'm definitely going to try the others, but I doubt that I'll make it through all of them.

  5. #30
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    The only thing I'll add to the Cocoon discussion is that since you play a little fly guy they should've played Pretty Fly For A White Guy over the end credits. Then it would've been good.

    Played through Wolfenstein: The New Order. Fantatastic. The storytelling and the gameplay are great.

    Playing Dead Space Remake right now. It's all predictably good stuff. I miss the zero-G system from the original tho. Sure it was slow and clunky, but also so different from zero G in any other game.

  6. #31
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2003
    Location: Mossad Time Machine
    Somewhat shamefully I have around 2,500 games in my Steam library, a legacy of the abundance of cheap bundles and giveaways, and I've played fewer than 10% of them, so I'm on a mission this year to make a big dent in that total.

    I have started with One More Island, a decent enough city builder/colony sim that looks like Prison Architect and plays a bit like the Anno series. It doesn't do anything groundbreaking, but I quite enjoyed it as far as it went, and would recommend it for genre fans. It did leave me frustrated at times as the difficulty dramatically ramps up towards the endgame and you need to supply your colonists with ever increasing quantitites and varieties of resource. Indeed, I had more than one worker die on me, despite markets with an abundance of fish, processed meat, bread and sausages, because they "need beer to survive". Ho hum.

  7. #32
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    After finishing Cocoon, I felt like something short and fun, so I installed Gato Roboto, having recently read something about short Metroidvanias. When I saw that there was already a save game at 65+% completion, I realised that I must have played and finished the game... and it obviously left no trace whatsoever in my memory. If I'd remembered it fondly, I wouldn't have minded replaying it, but seeing how I didn't remember it at all I just uninstalled it. Too many games and not enough time to replay stuff I found okay at best.

  8. #33
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2002
    Location: Edmonton
    I loved Gato Roboto; in fact I hundred-percented it. But to each their own.

  9. #34
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    I can't remember much about it. But I do remember that I liked it while I played it.

  10. #35
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2006
    Location: On the tip of your tongue.
    It was aggressively fine, if I remember correctly. Basically Metroid almost exactly just with a cat as a gimmick.

  11. #36
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2002
    Location: Edmonton
    I found it very charming. Cat jumps on the console and crashes the spaceship and then is too scared to go in the water to rescue its owner: classic cat stuff. I also like the 1-bit art style, and the controls were responsive, and it had good music and animation. It also only took maybe six or seven hours to complete. And I think it only cost 10 bucks. I would say it's aggressively pretty good.

    edit -- oh, and it has a meow button! 10/10
    Last edited by Aja; 15th Jan 2024 at 14:49. Reason: forgot about the meow button

  12. #37
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here
    Yup, Gato Roboto was very charming, had good controls and wasn't precious about anything. Charm and good gameplay can carry a game far for me, so yeah, it was pretty good. I haven't finished it, but it's on the list.

  13. #38
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    I probably sounded more negative about the game than intended. It's definitely charming, but once I realised I'd played and completed it before I simply didn't feel I had to replay it. I suspect that for me it was the perfect palate cleanser in between longer games.

  14. #39
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2002
    Location: Maupertuis
    Quote Originally Posted by Sulphur View Post
    Yup, Gato Roboto was very charming, had good controls and wasn't precious about anything. Charm and good gameplay can carry a game far for me, so yeah, it was pretty good. I haven't finished it, but it's on the list.
    It also doesn't overstay its welcome, a rarity in any genre. (Though I, for one, am entirely fine with a measure of preciosity.)

  15. #40
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Location: The Plateaux Of Mirror
    Somehow I've never played Skyrim Special Edition, so I'm playing the Anniversary Edition. It's kind of crazy how much stuff is in this game that I don't remember seeing before, and I've frequently found a quest or an item and checked to see if it was part of the AE and nope, it was in the base game or one of the main DLC's. The new content is...well, a lot of it is stupid (the fishing is actually so bad that after doing 1 of the quests I've just let it sit in my journal, untouched) or overpowered (giving you stuff like Dragonplate Armor 5 minutes after you leave Helgen). Some of the callbacks to earlier games could be interesting if they were integrated a little better, or at least had high level requirements or something. Something like the Gray Cowl quest should be unlocked after you become head of the Thieves Guild, for instance. The Daedric items should probably be unobtainable until the main quest associated with that Daedric Prince has been completed. But anyway, I'm mostly having fun I think. Going through tomb after tomb full of Drauger gets old as hell, and somehow they made Dwemer ruins boring. The Dark Brotherhood and Thieves Guild questlines were fun. The Main Quest is alright, especially going into it relatively blind (it has to be 10 years since I played Oldrim with the DLC). The other factions are super dull. Dragon fights are almost always hilarious, just because they seem to have their spawn points set in areas such that they'll show up at the least convenient times. Doing the relatively short Mage's Guild questline, I ended up killing 3 dragons in the College itself when they decided to fly in and interrupt whatever scripted dialog was supposed to be happening.

    It's not doing anything that would make me rank it higher than Starfield, that's for sure, and I think all of these years later the non-modded version is still somehow buggier. I hope SF DLC starts dropping relatively soon, because I'd like to take a break from clearing my backlog and get back to exploring space.

  16. #41
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2002
    Location: Maupertuis
    I still haven't played Skyrim at all. Maybe I like dragons too much to kill so many of them. I do own it on the Switch, though.

    I imagine your compatriots here could recommend better space exploration games than Starfield.

  17. #42
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2001
    Location: Somewhere
    Sega Genesis version of Starflight.

  18. #43
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2001
    Location: the Sheeple Pen
    I finished the first map in SteamWorld Build. It's a fun little game, but if all the other maps are pretty much the same when it comes to the gameplay, then I'm not sure if I can be bothered to start all over again.

    I also started playing Horace again. I can't believe that no one has ever made a post about it in here (according to the search function), not even I when I first played it three years ago. Horace is still one of my favourite action platformers, and it's quite likely the funniest game that I've played. There are so many clever/funny pop culture references and a lot of heartwarming or plain silly moments. The gameplay is fairly simple but good, basic metroidvania/platformer stuff really, and a lot of it revolves around Horace's special gravity boots. For me it's the story that made me fall in love with this game though. And Horace, the funny little robot, is quite possibly my favourite video game protagonist.

  19. #44
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2002
    Location: Edmonton
    I've been playing Sekiro again, and goddamn if this isn't one of my favourite games of all time, like top 5 easily. I got to Genichiro, and Sekiro says "This will only take a moment" (hell yeah, it will). Well, it took three moments, but considering the first time I fought him it took a week, I was basking. It's so austere and beautiful and sad; it starts snowing after you kill him and the world becomes grey and bleak, until you reach the temple, where it's always autumn at sunset. I can't seem to return to Dark Souls, as much as I loved those games, but the combat in Sekiro never gets old for me. A successful deflect, with its ping and shower of sparks, has got to be one of the greatest things in all video games.

  20. #45
    New Member
    Registered: Sep 2023
    Location: Nevada
    Ive been replaying Grand Theft Auto IV again, great game. I still think its Rockstar's masterpiece. I also have been revisiting the Metro series of games. would definitely recommend

  21. #46
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Sulph was RIGHT.

    Chants of Sennaar is SO GOOD.

  22. #47
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Finished Chants of Sennaar. I was totally hooked on it for the few days it took me to play through it. Very good adventure/puzzle game only slightly tarnished by some annoying stealth/action bits. Kinda reminded me of Return of the Obra Dinn. It had the same quality of piecing together the big picture and suddenly finding a scrap of info which ties into something else from earlier. They way the story is drip fed and eventually unfolds is nice too. Yeah, good game. Would've been only GOTY list had I played it earlier.

    The release of the USA Tour and -50% sale made me finally pick up the Dakar Desert Rally season pass. Besides containing a big stretch of America, it also has a bunch of new cars, including several Snowrunner trucks, and some classics, like this Porsche which I took for a spin in the Nevada Desert Rally.



    My very early impressions of the USA map is that the Grand Canyon looks cool, but perhaps isn't super-enjoyable to race through. Yellowstone's vegetation heavily impacts performance (on PS5 at least). Nevada, however, is a fine spot for rallying.

  23. #48
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Lost in the BSP...
    @Sulphur

    I get the same feelings about Jedi Survivor, which I just started playing a few days ago. You summed up my experience with it perfectly. The Souls-like formula just doesn't 100% mesh with the Star Wars mentality, but it's a decent game. About 7/10: better than average, great execution, just missing that something extra that would make it a truly epic experience.

    I like it for the most part, but there are just a few significant things that are holding it back: it feels like too much something-else besides Star Wars. Survivor is a definite improvement over Fallen Order, as far as the game goes, but it still has a long way to go yet.

  24. #49
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2002
    Location: Maupertuis
    What do y'all think are the games that feel most like Star Wars, then?

  25. #50
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Location: The Plateaux Of Mirror
    The X-Wing series. I mean, it depends on what you consider Star Wars, I guess. The KotOR games and Jedi Outcast are good and feel like Star Wars if you don't mind some post-prequel shittiness seeping in. Lego Star Wars 2 was pretty Star Wars-y. Empire Strikes Back on the Atari 2600? The original vector Star Wars arcade game?

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