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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Mon Mar 30, 2015 12:41 pm 
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CWS wrote:
Zanth wrote:
CWS wrote:
Zanth wrote:
CWS wrote:
Well, I'm a few years behind the curve, but I've finally really gotten into Dragon Age: Origins. Which is one of the reasons I've been somewhat scarce lately. :geek:
I should finish that some day... I have all three games... kind of like I have all three Mass Effect games...
Well, it's not like they're the best RPGs ever made or anything...just in my opinion :P
I'm pretty sure I will wholeheartedly disagree with you on that. I've yet to find an RPG to top Final Fantasy IV in my book.
If we were talking strictly Final Fantasy games, which at this point are almost a genre unto themselves, I'd agree. As it stands, the Final Fantasy series -- and the overwhelming majority of menu-driven Japanese RPGs, for that matter -- have so little in common with BioWare's style of RPGs that it's really difficult to draw fair comparisons between them. So I guess it really comes down to a matter of personal tastes.

Right, and I prefer the menu driven JRPGs to the style of Bioware's games, hell, I prefer SRPGs to Bioware's RPGs. But as you say, it is purely a matter of personal preference.

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Mon Mar 30, 2015 1:12 pm 
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Zanth wrote:
Right, and I prefer the menu driven JRPGs to the style of Bioware's games, hell, I prefer SRPGs to Bioware's RPGs. But as you say, it is purely a matter of personal preference.
That was why I was surprised that you liked Dragon Age. Because Dragon Age is, like, the most hardcore BioWare RPG ever. :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Wed Apr 01, 2015 12:10 am 
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Just because I prefer other types of RPGs doesn't mean I can't also like Dragon Age. :P The story is pretty good, and the game play didn't piss me off too much.

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2015 2:00 am 
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I really, truly do not get all the hype over Dark Souls. :|

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2015 3:27 pm 
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CWS wrote:
I really, truly do not get all the hype over Dark Souls. :|


I really don't get that either. I have Demon's Soul, but after it took me about an hour and a TON of frustrating deaths to get TO the first of a TON of bosses, I said screw it.

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2015 4:51 pm 
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The Dark Souls series is great. Then again, I think playing Mass Effect on less than Insanity is too easy and I downloaded a mod specifically designed to make XCOM's Impossible mode harder, so what do I know? :lol:

EDIT: I skipped ahead to Dark Souls 2: Scholar of the First Sin, because I couldn't get my PC to run Dark Souls properly. For me, it's satisfying to progress knowing it's because I've mastered some part of combat, and that I'm only getting further through the game because I'm mastering more and more aspects of combat together. You don't train for a specific weapon type in this game: you train for a specific weapon. Each weapon has its own unique reach, attack speed, effects, and scaling. So it's a game of mastery in that respect, and a game of mastering yourself. Enemies will kick your ass if you let them, and for that reason, you can feel real fear when they show up unexpectedly. For me, each fight feels like a boss fight in another game: there's no "okay I can just mash Kill All This Shit" in this zone and win. You have to respect each enemy and be both proactive and reactive, and some enemies, like Raime the Fume Knight, you can't even fight until you've developed your character enough that you've got sufficient stamina and stamina regen to avoid his attacks, which are generally a one hit kill unless you've specced your character into a tanky hex spamming douchebag or something.

And that's even before you get into the PVP in this game: you can't avoid this, btw, unless you play without your console or pc connected to the internet. Add to that a story that's excellent but requires some digging to get to -- if you just want to kill shit you don't even have to pay attention to who's who, really, but you can get deep into the matter of how your universe affects others etc -- and you've got a game that a lot of people love, and for good reason.

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Mon Jul 06, 2015 5:35 am 
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Loki Kola wrote:
The Dark Souls series is great. Then again, I think playing Mass Effect on less than Insanity is too easy and I downloaded a mod specifically designed to make XCOM's Impossible mode harder, so what do I know? :lol:
Yeah yeah yeah, furious L33T 5K1LL7 wankery aside... :P

I've only played the original Dark Souls so I can't comment on either of the other two (which also appears to be the case with each of you, none of us have played the same installment...), but my biggest annoyance with this game is not the difficulty level. It's the lack of any real tutorial to explain the game's basic mechanics, combined with the way the game actively penalizes you, in some cases very severely and permanently, for things you don't even understand yet because the game never bothered to explain them to you, except in hindsight later on, apparently to add insult to injury.

As for the story, well. I'm certainly not a person who needs to have every last little thing spelled out in detail, and in fact many times I enjoy being able to ponder subtle implications sprinkled here and there, and draw my own conclusions. That said, SOME narrative, beyond an obscure and rather baffling opening cinematic that seems to have little direct bearing on anything at the start of the game, would be nice. When you start a new game you get some of the standard RPG character customization options; a number of diverse classes to select from, and many options for tailoring your character's appearance. Once you're done with that, you find out that you've just wasted half an hour tweaking your character because you're now playing as a dessicated husk sitting in a dungeon somewhere, possibly in Hell or something, for reasons that may or may not eventually be explained, but definitely will not be for a good long while. If at all. Anyway somebody (a knight of some sort?) drops another rotting corpse into your cell, which happens to have on it a key that you can use to unlock your cell door, which enables you to start exploring the bleak, hellish and surely foul-smelling labyrinth in which you've been imprisoned for reasons unknown. You will also have to fight your way past other undead things, skeletons and such, for starters, and also for reasons unknown, except maybe that they're simply dead and pissed off about it. Needless to say, you'll also have to scavenge for weapons, armor, and other items as you go.

Oh, and by the way. When the opening cutscenes finish and you are given full control of your character, should you begin pressing buttons or keys to determine "what does what" in the control scheme you weren't able to customize or even look at in the game options, you will probably end up accidentally consuming one of the rare and highly valuable health items you start the game with. Which you might not ever get back. And thanks to the game's autosave features, the only way to reload is to start over from scratch.

But that's nothing compared to some of the other "surprises" the game will have in store for you, and this is coming from someone who's only gotten about an hour or so into the game. After wandering through the dungeon for a short while, I happened across a friendly NPC who began telling me his personal Tale of Woe. So I sit back thinking "Okay, finally somebody's going to give me at least a small clue as to what the hell I'm even supposed to be doing in this game." Since there are no enemies in the vicinity, I decide to experiment a bit more with the controls while he's talking, still trying to get a better sense of what each button does, particularly as they pertain to combat...and thus, I end up watching my character kill the NPC in mid-speech for no reason whatsoever. And then he's gone, simply because the game didn't warn me that friendly NPCs can be killed just as easily as (actually, far more so than) hostiles.

But it gets even better. After barely surviving an encounter with some sort of huge demon-thing, you find your way to your first camp site, where you can rest to save and restore your health. Since you are still learning the basics of the game's sometimes-awkward melee combat system, chances are good that you are probably getting hurt pretty often, so frequently revisiting your camp to heal/save logically seems like a good idea. Well, a bit further in the dungeon/castle/ruins/whatever, the game pretty much comes right out and says to you, "Oh, hey, didja notice that ALL enemies respawn EVERY time you return to the campfire? We thought that'd be a fun little surprise to throw in."

That's my biggest gripe with Dark Souls: the difficulty, at least initially, has much less to do with skill, ability, or strategy on your part than it does with the game keeping basic things secret from you.

Now, I could probably overlook one, or maybe two of these things, by themselves, if the rest of the game was amazing enough to hold my interest. But it's really not, at least from my perspective. And so as it stands, they all pile up to form a very convincing argument that this game simply does not want me to be playing it...and I'm not interested enough in it to overcome its own inherent reticence.

So, I guess that's that, at least for me anyway. :|

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2015 5:38 am 
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CWS wrote:
I've only played the original Dark Souls so I can't comment on either of the other two (which also appears to be the case with each of you, none of us have played the same installment...), but my biggest annoyance with this game is not the difficulty level. It's the lack of any real tutorial to explain the game's basic mechanics, combined with the way the game actively penalizes you, in some cases very severely and permanently, for things you don't even understand yet because the game never bothered to explain them to you, except in hindsight later on, apparently to add insult to injury.


Yes, the first game suffers from this: not as much as its players suffer, for sure. I remember spending five hours trying to get past the scimitar-wielding skeletons there just to find out that I should have gone left instead of right. =/

CWS wrote:
As for the story, well. I'm certainly not a person who needs to have every last little thing spelled out in detail, and in fact many times I enjoy being able to ponder subtle implications sprinkled here and there, and draw my own conclusions. That said, SOME narrative, beyond an obscure and rather baffling opening cinematic that seems to have little direct bearing on anything at the start of the game, would be nice. When you start a new game you get some of the standard RPG character customization options; a number of diverse classes to select from, and many options for tailoring your character's appearance. Once you're done with that, you find out that you've just wasted half an hour tweaking your character because you're now playing as a dessicated husk sitting in a dungeon somewhere, possibly in Hell or something, for reasons that may or may not eventually be explained, but definitely will not be for a good long while. If at all. Anyway somebody (a knight of some sort?) drops another rotting corpse into your cell, which happens to have on it a key that you can use to unlock your cell door, which enables you to start exploring the bleak, hellish and surely foul-smelling labyrinth in which you've been imprisoned for reasons unknown. You will also have to fight your way past other undead things, skeletons and such, for starters, and also for reasons unknown, except maybe that they're simply dead and pissed off about it. Needless to say, you'll also have to scavenge for weapons, armor, and other items as you go.


Yeah, you learn a fuckload more once you get to the first city, wherever it is (I can't remember), but I'll provide background for you. You're in the Undead Asylum. In the Dark Souls universe, Undeath exists as a curse, which brands an Undead with the Darksign. If you are cursed thus, you persist after your death as an Undead individual. This is not a bad thing outright: you live as you would in lift, but without need of food or water (at least that we see, because you're dead now anyway). You are struck with a different need, though: souls. The Curse of Undeath prescribes a certain, inevitable, fate: hollowing. This is the process by which an undead loses their free will, their character -- themselves. This begins with Undeath, and is exacerbated by losing parts of yourself: there's a smith in Dark Souls 2 is is pretty much a rotted out husk, but his craft -- smithing -- keeps him from being Hollowed, because its what he defines himself as. In a similar vein, a knight who remains honourable in undeath will take much longer to hollow, or may not Hollow if they can stave the effects off with souls, which are consumed in place of your essence as time goes on, preventing you from degrading into one of the withered monsters you encounter in the asylum. Hollows -- fully Holllowed Undead -- are hostile to everyone, because they hunger for souls, or light, or warmth, which comforts them like a soul would, and try to take your souls even though they cannot make use of them, because they are lost.

The Undead asylum exists because, as you may have guessed, killing an undead does not kill it: in fact, it further hollows it, and makes it even more dangerous, or dangerous if it were not hostile to begin with. So, they lock Undead up, if they can catch them, using demons -- which are not Undead, and cannot turn Undead, I'm pretty sure -- as jailers. There, they wait until the end of time, turning Hollow, and thus insane, one by one. The player starts as an Undead, partway to being Hollowed, but not quite there yet. And that's why when you kill fully Hollowed enemies, they never respawn. Only Undead who aren't all the way there will respawn, and this is helpful later, when you need to kill several more powerful ones to gain souls to level up: you rest at the bonfire to make them respawn, then you "Farm" them, for lack of a better term. They do stop respawning once you've killed them enough, although there's some item you can burn to make the area even harder but respawn all the enemies again.

Well, that's my basic introduction, but that's the premise. The good thing about Dark Souls I and Dark Souls II is that you do not have to play either game to know they other: they are in different kingdoms (possibly universes), with different characters, different mechanics (especially regarding Hollowing of the player character), in separate time periods. So, you could very well decide you'd rather play Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin (DX9 and DX11 are different versions of the game with separate purchases btw), because it looks better, plays better, all around is better, and all you're missing is the isolated, but no better or worse, story of Dark Souls I.

CWS wrote:
Oh, and by the way. When the opening cutscenes finish and you are given full control of your character, should you begin pressing buttons or keys to determine "what does what" in the control scheme you weren't able to customize or even look at in the game options, you will probably end up accidentally consuming one of the rare and highly valuable health items you start the game with. Which you might not ever get back. And thanks to the game's autosave features, the only way to reload is to start over from scratch.

But that's nothing compared to some of the other "surprises" the game will have in store for you, and this is coming from someone who's only gotten about an hour or so into the game. After wandering through the dungeon for a short while, I happened across a friendly NPC who began telling me his personal Tale of Woe. So I sit back thinking "Okay, finally somebody's going to give me at least a small clue as to what the hell I'm even supposed to be doing in this game." Since there are no enemies in the vicinity, I decide to experiment a bit more with the controls while he's talking, still trying to get a better sense of what each button does, particularly as they pertain to combat...and thus, I end up watching my character kill the NPC in mid-speech for no reason whatsoever. And then he's gone, simply because the game didn't warn me that friendly NPCs can be killed just as easily as (actually, far more so than) hostiles.

But it gets even better. After barely surviving an encounter with some sort of huge demon-thing, you find your way to your first camp site, where you can rest to save and restore your health. Since you are still learning the basics of the game's sometimes-awkward melee combat system, chances are good that you are probably getting hurt pretty often, so frequently revisiting your camp to heal/save logically seems like a good idea. Well, a bit further in the dungeon/castle/ruins/whatever, the game pretty much comes right out and says to you, "Oh, hey, didja notice that ALL enemies respawn EVERY time you return to the campfire? We thought that'd be a fun little surprise to throw in."

That's my biggest gripe with Dark Souls: the difficulty, at least initially, has much less to do with skill, ability, or strategy on your part than it does with the game keeping basic things secret from you.


You're right, on this: to be honest, I gave up on Dark Souls I, read about the story, played Scholar of the First Sin, and I've got several hundred hours clocked on that. Even though steam doesn't show it because I play offline so other players cannot invade my world and kill me. Which, yes, is an innate and intended part of the game, like I said, so your only way of getting around player invaders is to unplug the damn thing. Though there are still NPC invaders out to get you.

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2015 5:19 pm 
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Loki Kola wrote:
CWS wrote:
You're right, on this: to be honest, I gave up on Dark Souls I, read about the story, played Scholar of the First Sin, and I've got several hundred hours clocked on that. Even though steam doesn't show it because I play offline so other players cannot invade my world and kill me. Which, yes, is an innate and intended part of the game, like I said, so your only way of getting around player invaders is to unplug the damn thing. Though there are still NPC invaders out to get you.

Wow that sounds like even more fun. Or something. Mainly something, actually.

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Wed Nov 11, 2015 10:23 pm 
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System Shock: Enhanced Edition is not just a hardware-forgiving rerelease of the original classic, it brings in one of the finest features of first-person 3D gaming to have become ubiquitous in the two decades since its original release: Mouselook. The interface is still quirky, don't get me wrong; but the clunkiness is almost nonexistent none.

So that's been a key portion of time consumption lately :P Heartily recommended for...anyone who's enjoyed a first-person sci-fi game this century, really.

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Thu Nov 12, 2015 1:12 am 
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The Phiend wrote:
System Shock: Enhanced Edition is not just a hardware-forgiving rerelease of the original classic, it brings in one of the finest features of first-person 3D gaming to have become ubiquitous in the two decades since its original release: Mouselook. The interface is still quirky, don't get me wrong; but the clunkiness is almost nonexistent none.
The original System Shock didn't have mouselook? o_o Geez, how did that even work?

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Thu Nov 12, 2015 7:41 pm 
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CWS wrote:
The original System Shock didn't have mouselook? o_o
It was released late 1994 (if you don't count the inferior floppy-only release the middle of that year, which you shouldn't), the idea of being to look around freely in 3D was still newfangled. Heck, this was still the time of Doom's heyday, and Doom didn't even allow you to look up or down (and it had the bizarre mouse control of the left-right axis turning you, and the up-down axis moving you forward or backward...but I digress)

CWS wrote:
Geez, how did that even work?
Well, you could use the keyboard for movement/turning, or with the cursor near the edge of the screen it would change to display what type of motion left-mousing would do (an up arrow, a turning arrow, etc.) instead of the interaction you'd get near the middle of the screen (single-left-click to select something in the environment, double-left-click to use it). Right-click was always "fire" and your (ranged) weapons fire at where your cursor was instead of being locked to the center of the screen, so there was flexibility when it came to combat; it was definitely quirky but manageable.

The mouselook in Enhanced Edition is a toggle (since object/inventory/implant management relies on freely moving the cursor around), locking the cursor to the center of the screen and having mouse movement rotate POV like you expect. A great deal like how System Shock 2 shifts between what its tutorial calls "use mode" and "shoot mode"...a similarity I'm sure is intentional.

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Mon Nov 16, 2015 4:27 am 
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Loving Steam right now. :) I mean, sure, if the site ever goes under, it'll mean I'll lose half my entire library of games...

Getting off track. I just found one of my old favourites: Vampire: the Masquerade Bloodlines. :rbg: It's an interesting beast for sure, a great RPG I loved back in the day. Was prone to crashing and glitching a lot. :? Despite its flaws, it's something you have to try playing at least once, it's surprisingly immersive for its time.


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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Mon Nov 16, 2015 6:22 am 
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snowman1989 wrote:
Loving Steam right now. :) I mean, sure, if the site ever goes under, it'll mean I'll lose half my entire library of games...
Well, I doubt there's much chance of that, at this point... ;)

snowman1989 wrote:
Getting off track. I just found one of my old favourites: Vampire: the Masquerade Bloodlines. :rbg: It's an interesting beast for sure, a great RPG I loved back in the day. Was prone to crashing and glitching a lot. :? Despite its flaws, it's something you have to try playing at least once, it's surprisingly immersive for its time.
I've never actually played it but I'm somewhat peripherally aware of the game; I remember my brother(s) used to play it way back when.

Okay, here's a seemingly-random but somewhat pressing personal question for everybody: Gears of War remastered plus Rare Replay Collection, OR Fallout 4?

(I suspect I know the answer, but I thought I'd ask anyway. :P )

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Mon Nov 16, 2015 12:37 pm 
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Well, Gears is a remake with some new stuff, Rare Replay I believe you said nothing much interests you, so I'd probably have to say Fallout 4. Gears/Rare Replay is better value for your money(assuming no cost difference), but I think Fallout 4 would give you a better new-game experience.

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Thu Nov 19, 2015 1:46 am 
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Thanks for the input! :ugeek:

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Thu Nov 19, 2015 12:21 pm 
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CWS wrote:
Thanks for the input! :ugeek:


No problem! I hope you enjoy Fallout 4!

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2015 6:28 am 
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CWS wrote:
snowman1989 wrote:
Getting off track. I just found one of my old favourites: Vampire: the Masquerade Bloodlines. :rbg: It's an interesting beast for sure, a great RPG I loved back in the day. Was prone to crashing and glitching a lot. :? Despite its flaws, it's something you have to try playing at least once, it's surprisingly immersive for its time.
I've never actually played it but I'm somewhat peripherally aware of the game; I remember my brother(s) used to play it way back when.


I have to recommend getting it during a Steam sale (which there currently is, but it'll end in a few hours) and after getting Wesp's unofficial patch to fix the bugs. I'm serious, this game is brilliant, and is an interesting take on the vampire genre. Like Mass Effect, your choices decide how the game pans out, and there are five possible endings that result. I'd go as far as to say it's the best vampire game I've ever played.


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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2015 6:06 am 
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I've gotta say, the new digital "re-imagining" of Strider is truly breathtaking. It's been fully expanded into a Metroid-style 2.5-D action/adventure title, but in this case that really makes a lot of sense because one of the signatures of Strider, going all the way back to the original arcade game, was the fact that your character could traverse nearly any kind of surface or terrain, which naturally lends itself very well to free-roaming, multi-directional exploration.

Of course the other hallmarks of Strider were extremely fast-paced hack & slash combat, huge elaborate boss battles, and the fact that you are playing as a high-tech ninja fighting against an alternate-future Soviet empire. All of which is gloriously represented here as well.

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 Post subject: Re: Video Game Junkies, Sorta-Anonymous
PostPosted: Sat Oct 15, 2016 1:37 am 
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Is it fucked up that I actually wish something would attack my main settlement in Fallout 4? :lol:

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