Aug 2, 2014

Video Game Reviews

Skyrim – I finally played Skyrim and it’s all it’s meant to be. I didn’t do a lot with mods, but I did install an alternative inventory management system cuz the default one sucks. And an advanced lighting one because why not. But I didn’t install anything to change the gameplay or story. The game is pretty great, pretty much exactly as I remember oblivion. I’m not sure what, if anything, is different between the two. I guess the voice thing, but I almost never used that. It is fun to blow someone off the top of a mountain, but the rest of the shouts are meh. I did eventually run out of juice, I played the damn thing for 116 hours, according to Steam. Around 100 I started pushing on the main quest because the value of becoming Thane of every town with more than 10 citizens seemed to wane. I never did the vampires, the thieves, the dark brotherhood, all the daedra, and I barely started the werewolves. It wasn’t that it wasn’t all fun, I had just played so much. It is officially my most played game on steam, beating out star trek online, which I’m shocked to discover I had over 100 hours of. So, yeah, I obviously loved it, but there’s not much I wouldn’t be bored off after triple digit hours.

Octodad – This went on sale just as I was winding up Skyrim, and it seemed like the perfect palette cleanser. It’s a goofy physics game on the vein of surgeon simulator or QWOP, but not so hard. You control an octopus who is pretending to be a man and you complete various mundane tasks. But you control your “feet” and “hands” with some goofy physics so the challenge is to do things without destroying your surroundings or prompting suspicion. It’s silly, but it’s fun. There’s a co-op mode, dunno what that’s about, each person controls an arm? The game is very short, I beat it in a couple hours. I guess I could go back and get all the secrets but that’s silly. It’s funny that I paid $5 for 2 hours here and $7.50 for 116 skyrim hours. But that’s not a reflection on this being a bad deal, skyrim was just an amazing deal.

Zeno Clash – I’m way behind on this one, but it went on sale at some point. I admire what these folks were trying to do. It’s super hard to make a first person melee game. It’s interesting, but not all that fun. The controls are mostly uncomfortable and annoying. The style of the game is certainly unique. It doesn’t really mesh with me, and I don’t know why. I feel like they deserve a lot of credit for being totally different. But mostly I was just trying to get through the game, not super enjoying it.

Shadowrun Returns: Dragonfall – I quite liked the first release of SR. It had it’s limitations, for sure, and parts were a bit rocky. But I love the world too much not to love a chance to play in it. This game, technically, is basically exactly the same. Theoretically they added options and fixed stuff up, but I played basically the exact same character (mostly mage), so it seemed pretty similar. Things were a little smoother, but I didn’t really have too many problems the first time around. Most annoying thing is how crazily slow saving is, not too bad a primary complaint. People made a big deal of the story, and it is pretty good. Certainly had me hooked in more than the first game. The way it plays out is pretty good, and the admittedly binary choice at the end is a good one. The other “better” aspect is you are supposed to feel more like a shadowrunner, that didn’t really work out. Yeah, you could choose your missions a little bit, but there was a pretty short list, and you had to get through the majority of them to progress the story, so that makes it a lot less optional. It was better than the first game, but still wasn’t much different. I’m playing a community campaign now that is much more of the get a random job style. The list of jobs is pretty small, there’s just not that many types of missions you can have. But it’s fun, I’m not sure if I’ll play through its whole story before I get bored, but we’ll see. Anyway, I love shadowrun, I wish I could play it pen and paper again. This game is as close as I’ll get, so I like it.

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