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Forums > Contributor Zone > RotW // 27th July Ė 2nd August //

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Author: EmP (Mod)
Posted: August 06, 2020 (01:23 PM)
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Alsoran: Destroy All Humans! 50% chance of it being remembered in next weekís line up.


NOT VACANT - Titan Quest [PS4] Overdrive


Robís written some of his best stuff ever this year while on an action RPG kick, but not every game can be The Witcher. So, here, he commits to talking about this middle of the road game. Rob commits hard. The problem heís faced with is Titan Quest is a mediocre loot grinder thatís hard to fully recommend but doesnít do anything awful enough to condemn. Labelling it as an itch scratcher is probably the smartest choice available, giving a sense of relevance assuming the player is in the right mind set. Robís exhaustive in setting out how this game works and running through the mechanics but isnít particularly blessed with many exciting things to talk about. But he ploughs through it anyway, like a trooper. This review may not be getting a lot of overblown praise, but thereís a difficult job to do, and Rob does it.


THIRD Steins;Gate: My Darlingís Embrace [PS4] Jerec


Massive props to Jerec, who sets himself an impossible task; to talk about a kind of but not really sequel/AU to a ridiculously convoluted visual novel thatís preposterously proud of how massively complicated its purposefully pretentious plot threads are. And doing so in an environment where, because heís talking about a tale obsessed with bending back on itself, even a passing plot explanation could be crawling with spoilers. The start of this review is understandable hesitant and, I get why youíd want to tiptoe around the game rather than talk right at it, but while you make a lot of points that need to be made, I donít think the second and third paragraphs in particular really fit in as an introduction. From there on, though, you make some really strong points, like the regression of Okabe and Kurisu relationship being jarring, or how the focus on a slightly different tale forces you to view Moeka differently, even though your pre-existing knowledge of her is already going to sour her to returning readers, because you know what sheís capable of. I legit had to read the bit about the group forming a band a couple of times before the absurdity of the concept finally stuck, so a well advised screenshot to drive that home, I thought.


SECOND - Shantae and the Seven Sirens [SWH] Mariner


Iíve played very little of Shantae (Iíve started two of the games before, but got no further than an hour or so in) and thatís unfortunate in this case because thereís definitely an assumption of familiarity here. Marinerís review is more theory than game explanation, and though I might have phrased this as a negative, I donít think it is. The clear goal here is that Seven Sirens is not a bad game, itís even quite a good one, but it can be played almost in autopilot with little in the way of challenge. Itís a very well made point, backed by example, but the review does sacrifice game description to make that point. Would that matter if I, like probably most gamers, were more familiar with the Shantae series? Probably not as much. But Iím not, so itís moot!

Typo check: Often this would be kill a game


WINNER Regions of Ruin [PC] Joe


I liked Joeís Carrion review, even if Iím not-so-secretly bitter that I had to pass up that particular review because Jasonís renewed his ongoing war against me free time. Itís a reverse horror game that Iím sure Iíll visit myself sometime down the line that is done great credit by Joe and his horror-obsessed ways, tying it back to strong film examples. But I preferred Regions of Ruin, mainly because it offers a more challenging subject matter; the middle of the road game. Joeís theory here is something that weíve all suffered from time to time; being elbow deep in a game thatís lost our interest, but having enough investment ploughed in already that we feel obligated to see it through. Joe talks about a strong start to the game, the illusion of exploration and the desire to build up you village from scratch, but then how this is cheapened by copy/paste gameplay and exploitable perks. But, by this point, itís too late! You either see it through or resign all those invested hours as wasted. A very well made point.



TAGLINE OF THE WEEK

Gary Hartley says: "Once you max the gameís anti-gravity perks, you may not be able to put it down.Ē


For us. For them. For you.

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Author: jerec
Posted: August 06, 2020 (02:14 PM)
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Quite a bit of competition this week, so I'm very thankful for third place. Thanks for the kind words! You're right about paragraph 2 and 3 not really fitting in the intro, since in the original draft they were more towards the middle, but I didn't think they really fit there, either.

Also strategically posted this review knowing you were doing RotW, because I know you're familiar with the series. :D

Edit: Your tagline is very good.


I can avoid death by not having a life.

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Author: JoeTheDestroyer (Mod)
Posted: August 10, 2020 (01:34 PM)
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I thank you. At least something ultimately positive came of plowing throw Regions of Ruin. Congrats to Jerec and Mariner as well.


The only thing my milkshake brings to the yard is a subpoena.

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Author: overdrive (Mod)
Posted: August 12, 2020 (12:28 PM)
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Thanks for the words and I agree: It is hard to make a truly fun review when you're dealing with a game that appeals to you (to a degree), but is mediocre and unexceptional overall. It's not horrible, so you can't bash it; but how much praise can you give a game when you're basically saying "If you're looking for this kind of game, you could do worse than this one...probably, I guess..."

Good thing is, with PlayStation Now giving me the chances to play all sorts of average-ish games in the genres I'm enjoying the most right now, I'll probably face that challenge enough times to figure out how to write winning reviews for games like this.


I'm not afraid to die because I am invincible
Viva la muerte, that's my goddamn principle

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Author: EmP (Mod)
Posted: August 15, 2020 (06:40 AM)
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Jerec: I pity the fools who have avoided Steins;Gate. There's a perfectly serviceable anime out there for people who just want to feel remarkably dumb without playing through a visual novel, after all.

Rob: If you ever crack the painfully middle of the road video game review enigma, feel free to let me know. We've all made it work from time to time, but, it's my least favourite thing to do.


For us. For them. For you.

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Author: overdrive (Mod)
Posted: August 15, 2020 (08:59 AM)
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Between Hamilton's Great Adventure, Knack and Touhou Scarlet Curiousity, I've been playing a lot of games in that zone recently, so if I can't crack the code, it won't be from lack of trying, at least!


I'm not afraid to die because I am invincible
Viva la muerte, that's my goddamn principle

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