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Title: Commentary on the games I have played this year.
Posted: July 12, 2011 (10:18 AM)
Fallout: New Vegas - With the patch, this is easily one of the best games this gen and essentially renders Fallout 3 obsolete in my mind. Far better quests & characters and a far more interesting and varied game world. No more 30+ identical office buildings & subway tunnels! I got pretty hooked on New Vegas. I ended up playing it for 2 months while interning, did 4 playthroughs (one on Hardcore). Fantastic game.

Alpha Protocol - I spent $12 for a new copy of this game and I'm glad I didn't spend any more. I had a love-hate feel with this one. At first the game just flat out sucks. The shooting & stealth is pretty much neutered at the start of the game until you improve your stats and buy better equipment. Once that happens, the game turns out to be a fun yet clunky shooter RPG. I enjoyed the story & the game did good at making it feel like your choices mattered. I tried replaying the game with the Veteran background, but I lost interest quickly due to the sloppy mechanics.

LA Noire - Basically a niche adventure game with some sandbox & action elements thrown in that got a ton of hype thanks to being published by Rockstar. I actually enjoyed LA Noire a lot in spite of its repetition & complete lack of difficulty. I was pretty glued to my seat because of the fantastic presentation, writing, and acting. I liked it a lot, but I can see why the fan reaction was so mixed. It's essentially a graphic adventure only if you can't solve the "puzzles" you get to move on. I got every achievement in this game because I am insane.

Prince of Persia: Forgotten Sands - I got this for $11. I love this series, but I'd been hesitant with Forgotten Sands due to the lukewarm response it had. It feels like a PS2 game with better textures and it's surprisingly glitchy and rushed feeling near the end. Despite that, I had a ton of fun with it, and it reminded me of how I missed the PS2 era POP when I played the 2008 installment. I'm hoping for a sequel that plays more like this but doesn't feel so half assed.

Shadows of the Damned - I just finished this last night. I could easily see it being one of my favorite games of the year. Loved the mixture of RE4/5 style action with Suda51 weirdness. Humorous characters & dialog, excellent soundtrack by Akira Yamaoka, awesome game environments. Pretty much my only complaints are the game's relatively short length (it took me about 7 hours and 40 minutes my first playthrough) and the inability to skip cutscenes. I think the game only sold like 40,000 worldwide in its first week, so I'd highly recommend this when it inevitably drops price.

Not sure what I'll be playing next. I'm replaying Shadows now to finish up the achievements. I'm tempted to pick up Vanquish or MVC3, but I've got my eye on Catherine for the immediate future.
[reply]

SuskieUser: Suskie
Title: Re: Commentary on the games I have played this year.
Posted: July 12, 2011 (12:51 PM)
I should warn you that the Shadows difficulty achievements don't stack, which means you'll have to beat the game a minimum of three times to get them all. I thought I'd be able to 100% the game in one run and was disappointed. (Also, obtaining all of the Red Gems on the highest difficulty is pretty much impossible since they're so expensive.)

I also made an effort to get all of the L.A. Noire achievements, but then stopped when I realized that Xbox Live had loaded achievements for DLC that hadn't been released yet, and wouldn't be until after I returned the game. Beyond lame.

I agree with you on a lot of these. There's a lot of value in Alpha Protocol, but also plenty of things it does inexcusably wrong. I found Forgotten Sands relatively, um, forgettable but still a nice homage to the PoP games of last generation, especially after the disappointing reboot. I didn't love SotD but I had a lot more fun with it than some of the big-name releases that I expected would own 2011 (like L.A. Noire and Dragon Age II).
[reply]

GenjUser: Genj
Title: Re: Commentary on the games I have played this year.
Posted: July 12, 2011 (01:09 PM)
Yeah I'm already aware of that you need to play through 3 times for the Shadows achievements. All I'm missing is beating it on Hard, beating it on Easy, getting all upgrades, and killing 30 enemies with the Teethgrinder (not sure how I missed that the first time through). I'm up to 3-2 on Hard so far. I'm not too concerned about the difficulties not stacking since the Gem one seems to require playing on Easy anyway due to the cost differences.

In hindsight I should have ignored the LA Noire achivements because the vehicle & film reel achievements were mind numbingly boring and I only kept going since I didn't have an income yet.
[reply]

MastersUser: Masters
Title: Re: Commentary on the games I have played this year.
Posted: July 12, 2011 (02:31 PM)
Isn't SotD full of gratuitous nudity? Am I thinking of the right game?
[reply]

GenjUser: Genj
Title: Re: Commentary on the games I have played this year.
Posted: July 12, 2011 (02:41 PM)
It's full of dick jokes.
[reply]

BenUser: Ben
Title: Re: Commentary on the games I have played this year.
Posted: July 12, 2011 (04:11 PM)
Glad you somewhat enjoyed Alpha Protocol. I have an unnatural love for that game, despite all of the flaws. I got every achievement in that game because I am insane.

I never did finish Fallout: New Vegas. I grew bored not long after there were four or five different story paths to take. It was a bit overwhelming - I prefer Fallout 3's linear story, which seems to be a minority opinion on this site.

I also never finished L.A. Noire. I gave up on Homicide. I thought people might have been giving it too hard a time when I was reading the negative reviews here, but now I'm inclined to agree with them. At least L.A. Noire is better than Red Dead Redemption.
[reply]

SuskieUser: Suskie
Title: Re: Commentary on the games I have played this year.
Posted: July 12, 2011 (05:25 PM)
Baha. That reminds me of when you were like, "Game of Thrones hasn't grabbed me yet, but at least it's better than Lord of the Rings!" Nonconformist does not care for your mainstream opinions!
[reply]

zippdementiaUser: zippdementia
Title: Re: Commentary on the games I have played this year.
Posted: July 13, 2011 (10:22 PM)
I agree with you, spot on, about Alpha Protocol, except that I liked the beginning better than the later half of the game where the mechanics just became more noticeably broken as the difficulty got higher. One of the worst best games I've ever played.

I'm glad to hear that Fallout New Vegas doesn't recycle so many locations. One day I'll pick it up for the PS3. I started a new playthrough of Fallout 3 but just got mind boggingly bored with it's stale world.
[reply]

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