What games are you playing 2: The revenge

Still playing Ni No Kuni 2. About 1/3 to 1/2 of the way through the main campaign, depending on how long the remaining chapters are. It seems to vary. Plus I'll still have the DLC stuff after that.

I did rush through a bit of the main story to unlock things without bothering with sidequests. It doesn't lock you out of them if you're pushing ahead that I can see. I spent today mostly doing sidequests without progressing the main story, and got a lot done, mostly relating to the Kingdom building part of the game.

I quickly turned off the English VA. Not because it was bad, but because English doesn't match the very Japanese body language of the characters, and that was bugging me. What little I heard of the English VA was decent though, and I would have put up with it had Japanese voices not been an option.

It's a neat little mashup of gameplay types, lots of content. Collecting things is very much a big part of this game, and the DLC adds quite a bit, including a bunch of post game content and a level cap raise. I'm aware of this because it gives you the quests about halfway through the game and one of them recommends lvl 120, where as the original cap is 99.

The story is...stupid, but whimsical and fun despite it. You spend most of the game running around as the boy king being a naive idiot who should be getting taken advantage of a lot more often than you do. It works out, and you end up forgiving people who you really shouldn't, but again, this seems to be geared towards being friendly to a younger audience than what I usually play.

The happy go lucky tone is kind of infectious and works for the silliness involved. As a game, it seems somewhat self aware of that.

The action RPG part is probably the part I like the most. It's basically a Tales game on that front.

Combat encounters aren't super annoying. Enemies near your level are aggressive and will chase you down if you get too near to them. Enemies below your level will ignore you, but you can still attack them if you want. This is useful if you need specific materials from certain enemy types.

The Kingdom building part is a bit tedious, but still worth doing. It essentially works like a mobile game, but not quite as drawn out. You build things, use them to research things, and build up currency and items at timed intervals. It's not unreasonable, and you should move along at a fair clip if you're dropping by between quests. The fast travel system makes that less of a chore.

It has a separate currency and requires that you gather NPCs as you play, usually by doing sidequests. Leveling things up as early as you can is worth it, as the kingdom provides bonuses, makes things easier to find, unlocks more powerful gear and magic, and gives you a regular supply of materials for upgrades.

It does effectively cap you, as you need a certain number of citizens to level the Kingdom up, and you can only obtain so many before progressing the story along. If you're playing normally you should have built up everything and still have enough to upgrade nearly everything at least once by the time you're actually able to do so.

The skirmishes are a nice way to break things up a little. They require little strategy and are basically a rock paper scissors kind of matchup game more than a real strategy. You run around a battlefield surrounded on four sides by groups of soldiers, each with a different color and attack style you can rotate around you. You run into groups of other soldiers who are strong or weak against certain types of attacks. It's kind of like Pikmin in a way, but not quite so involved.

Farming for the Kingdom building currency is the easiest way to beat them as you can buy buffs, but you shouldn't really need it, at least not for the first several levels anyway. Still, if you want to steamroll through them, it is easy to do by just frequently visiting and gathering up enough of the currency to buy all the upgrades and just destroy the opposition with little effort.

Farming anything in this game isn't particularly hard. Every character I have has the rarest level of equipment [it drops more frequently on expert]. I haven't actually needed to buy or craft anything but consumables. There are a ton of consumables, but only a few are useful.

There are also a lot of what seems to be randomly spawning chests that provide consumables and gear on the world map. There are some that are static as well, and certain ones that require a spell you can't get until around ch 4-5 to unlock.

Mostly the things I've been spending materials on are the collectible "pet" things called Higgledies that run around on the battlefield and provide various buffs, and upgrading spells.

You can craft them in a building in your Kingdom, and each is unique. You also find stones and interact with them, and they'll give you a simple riddle. Provide the correct item and you'll get a new Higgledy.

It also takes a long time to really open up. Which isn't that unusual for JRPGs. The pace is decent outside of grinding, which is necessary, at least on Expert difficulty, which I'm playing on. I've died twice in total, once in the first dungeon when I was still figuring out the mechanics of the combat system. The other time when I poked a lvl 50 mob with a stick when I was around lvl 12.

That's not because I'm particularly skilled, but rather my familiarity with this type of game and the fact that it seems to be made intentionally easier as for a younger audience.

Graphically it's downright beautiful. Stylized, but well animated. Each area is distinct and the monsters are well designed without being too cute.

Definitely recommend this one to fans of JRPG games, particularly action RPGs like the Tales series.
 
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chronodekar

Obsessively signs his posts
Staff member
Having bought the game myself as well, I do find myself struggling with the combat myself at times and don't remember having these problems during my original playthrough. Those same three guys murdered as well. I ended up just running around the field and using hand-and-run tactics to avoid them attacking me one after another while I'm helpless to actually do anything.
What console are you playing on? Am wondering if this is some optimization or weirdness of the PS4 Pro 'enhanced' mode.

-chronodekar
 

chronodekar

Obsessively signs his posts
Staff member
Damn ... there goes that theory. -_-

As for my game, I shifted to easy difficulty for that 3vs 1 assassin fight. I must be more leveled that expected, because all their attacks could only do 1 damage to me. (before lower difficulty, they were doing 200+ )

-chronodekar
 
Been playing Osiris: New Dawn recently - it's a pretty interesting space survival game, but unfortunately its still in early access.
 
Finished story mode in DB FighterZ. All three arcs. Played for free over the free weekend on Steam and finished story mode, played a bit of arcade as well and didn't bother with much else.

Man, that was super easy. The CPU is super vulnerable to the rush ability on the RT. It makes it easy to get in, get through their guard, and combo them into oblivion. They will counter on occasion, but not enough to turn the tables.

There are three arcs, each covering the story from different angles, and also being a sort of AU. Each chapter is broken up into board game like areas where you move from battle to battle. The best strategy is to clear every fight on a board before moving on. You have a limited number of moves you can make, but I never came close to running out and aren't sure why they bothered with it.

I beat the entire second arc and fought every available battle on the maps without touching the analog stick or D-pad in the fights. I did need to use it to navigate the map.

Just stack health regen if you want to just faceroll through the story mode. It makes it really hard to die. I actually removed them because it was making things too easy, and still never once managed to lose my first slot fighter without switching to anyone else during a match [outside of tutorial segments that showed you how] with only exp bonus in my slots through about 80% of the campaign. I did also switch out the main between battles just to spice things up and try out other characters every so often.

Also, none of the special moves are difficult. I don't recall anything that used more than a hadoken quarter circle and a button press. It's very forgiving and accessible as a fighting game. It's not hard to rack up a decent combo and by the time I finished the end of the first arc I was easily beating foes down with 30-50 hit combos, and that's without the extra 20 or so hits the stronger special moves tack on on top of that.

I did come close to losing my lead fighter, as you only regain a portion of your health between fights while on a board. Usually it was enough to top it off, but a few times I took enough of a beating trying various tactics and moves that it would take two or three fights to get my main back up to full health again.

Yes, there is a harder difficulty, but you have to get through the campaign on the normal mode to unlock it, so I don't really want to get into it without enough time left on the free weekend to finish, but reading up on it, the rush into combo tactic works on hard mode as well. Human players will provide a much bigger challenge and I suspect that is where the real meat of the game is.

It was fun, but a bit tedious, as you fight hordes of clones that pad out the gameplay. It feels a bit grindy, but the spectacle of it helps a lot. Honestly, I think I would have minded that less if I wasn't playing it on a time limit due to trying to finish it during the free weekend.

It looks great and Android 21 is an okay DB villain. The story is a bit weird, as it kind of breaks the 4th wall by addressing the player directly/indirectly fairly frequently.

It also kind of undercuts everything in the last arc, including Android 21's character. She goes from being a decently nasty DB villain, to something akin to a badly written fanfiction self insert character. Even in the context of it being a video game it doesn't make a lot of sense. It was also super obvious what they were going to do with her because Android 16 basically gives the twist away prior to that in a hamfisted attempt at foreshadowing.

The third arc is the worst part of the story mode. You spend most of it with only two characters, it's the longest arc, and a huge grind. You still want to take every fight, or the final boss will be a huge pain, including forcing one on you that you haven't been able to use up to that point. Plus it should get you most of the way to unlocking SSBSS Goku and Vegeta assuming you level them both up. If you're stacking exp boosting bonuses through most of all three arcs, you should get there.

Worth a play for sure, but I'd say wait for a sale and get it cheap when all the DLC is out of you don't already have it. Maybe they'll do another free weekend at some point, which is all you need if you just want to run through the SP part of the game. The first two arcs are a little grindy, but a lot of fun, but the third is playable, but easily the weakest of the bunch and much more of a grind.
 
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Antimatter

Well-Known Member
Resident Evil 2 is my current go to, though MHW's new festival is a fun one. Got what I needed for the festival armor so at this point i'm just playing RE and trying not to panic. Mr X adds a ton of tension to the areas where you are chased by him, you really have to start planning your movements.

Playing on assisted though, as i'm a dirty scrub. Trying to make this the first RE game I actually complete.
 
Still playing Ni No Kuni 2.

Tons of sidequests. Lots of content, still a really great game.

The story is stupid though. It's not bad, just dumb.

Seriously, why are game characters such idiots?

The same asshole causes problems in every kingdom you visit, yet not once does anyone think "Hey, I bet that one guy is at the bottom of the weird behavior the leader has that all their subjects say is completely out of character for them..."

Once or twice I kind of get, but it happens every single major kingdom you go to.

There's a lot of soft headedness in this game on a lot of levels. I get it in an anime or game with an idiot protagonist, but no one here is presented that way but the Pirates.

I get that it's got the plot of a kids anime, but still...

Roland is supposed to be pretty observant and a good strategist, but never once decides to mention that it's probably the same jerk at the root of the issues after the first couple of kingdoms end up rulers with the exact same symptoms.
 

sikle

Well-Known Member
Did the whole Kingdom Hearts 3 thing. It's... Just not as good as the previous games. The entirety of the FF cast has been cut aside from a quick mention in mount olympus. A solid chunk of the final storyline is hinging on the player being aware of what's been going on in a japanese only browser game. I'd give it a solid six out of ten, personally.
It just seems like they were throwing everything together to try and wrap the franchise up.
 
Finished the main quest of Ni no kuni 2.

Being what it is, I was kind of expecting the mega happy ending, and it did nothing to surprise me aside from pulling a rather dumb plot twist out of its ass that had no real foreshadowing until way late in the game. Too late for it to have any impact.

There's a lot of stuff you can't do until post game. You literally cannot upgrade your Kingdom fully, do a lot of research to unlock crafting stuff, or finish certain quests until you reload a completed save file. I feel like this game pretty much wants you to rush through the main story, and then come back and do all the side stuff after.

As far as I know, you don't get locked out of doing anything. The game just adds more to the pile at certain story points. The side quests are more interesting than the main story to be honest, and there are a lot of them.

At any rate, I am now into the DLC and...

The expanded forest dungeon is just more of the dream door. The "adventurer's pack" is pretty basic really. A new high level boss and some extra floors to the forest dream door. It's decent for free DLC, which is what it is.

Lair of the Lost Lord has some interesting stuff in there, but it has terrible execution. The dungeon levels are frequently huge nearly empty mazes and it's mostly grinding for lvl 120. It does add some very short new character stuff for Steampunk Sakura and wild child tomboy delinquent princess #32.

Lair of the Lost Lord seems to actually be specifically for grinding. There's some new gear and story stuff, but I feel like I should have started it sooner, as it adds some new combat mechanics that would have been useful that are fairly easy to get at a low level. Story wise, it's definitely post game, but content wise it feels more like something you should use to power level during the game. It throws a lot of mini bosses at you which give a fair amount of xp, and you can run it multiple times. It's more efficient than running around the game world for leveling, even if only by a bit.

Also, as I said, there's a lot of empty space in the new dungeon crawl. Regular enemies are surprisingly sparse. Seriously, there is a lot of empty space here that's just boring to run around in and only serves to make you wander around a lot. It wouldn't be so bad if there were more mobs filling the place out, but that isn't the case.

If you get the DLC for super cheap on sale, great. Otherwise it's not worth the money so far unless you just want a way to grind yourself to god level early on in the game. It would make that easier. That may change if the next DLC is any good. They've announced it's coming, but haven't said when or what it will be outside of it "adding story content".

I'm interested in it, but will be waiting on reviews to see if it is worth bothering with.

Overall, the game is worth it if you're into JRPGs, though, the current DLC is not. Supposedly there is more story stuff coming later this year. Hopefully it won't be yet another variant on the dream door dungeons from the main quest.
 

Knyght

The Collector
You literally cannot upgrade your Kingdom fully, do a lot of research to unlock crafting stuff, or finish certain quests until you reload a completed save file.
This annoyed me. I had upgraded my Kingdom as much as was possible - often by leaving the game running when I wasn't interested in playing so that I'd continue to collect money and complete research - and had every intention of finishing it before the endgame only to find that the last few citizens I needed couldn't be recruited beforehand. I should have really been allowed to make my Kingdom the best that it could be before finishing.

Once I finished the last battle, I immediately did those specific quests to upgrade my Kingdom then just switched off my console.
 
This annoyed me. I had upgraded my Kingdom as much as was possible - often by leaving the game running when I wasn't interested in playing so that I'd continue to collect money and complete research - and had every intention of finishing it before the endgame only to find that the last few citizens I needed couldn't be recruited beforehand. I should have really been allowed to make my Kingdom the best that it could be before finishing.

Once I finished the last battle, I immediately did those specific quests to upgrade my Kingdom then just switched off my console.
I'm going to over explain some stuff so other people who might read it can sort of follow it, no spoilers, but...

Yeah, a bit. I would have liked to have not had kingdom building capped by the game's story points nearly as much as it was. Some of the research I understood, like story specific spells that act as keys to story areas and NPCs, and some of the gear research, but it would have been nice to be able to get the buildings up to max level before post game. They should have let us get the kingdom level and most of the research done in the last chapter at least.

The final tier of gear research I would have understood, but there are three tiers of gear you can't unlock until after you've finished the main quest. That was a stupid design decision.

I had the DLC and hadn't messed with it, so I had something to do beyond the main quest after the end game where the upgraded gear and post game stuff is useful. It didn't bother me that much that I couldn't get some of the research done for gear as much as it might have otherwise because of that, though I do think they overdid walling some of it off to post game.

Honestly, I'm finding the adventure mode dream door harder than the Lair of the Lost Lord DLC. If the danger meter gets up, you'll end up facing lvl 130+ enemies by the 35th floor [there are only 40 floors I think.] I'm only around lvl 80 so far, the lvl cap for your characters is 120, and there's a huge damage drop off regardless of how good your gear is at around 40+ levels. At lvl 80 a 130 lvl enemy will only take single or double digit damage and will kill you in one or two hits even if you have the highest lvl available weapons and armor fully upgraded.

You can start on a higher floor after you get some research done in one of the buildings in your kingdom. You can start on floor 21 after you get it, and another higher floor after you beat the dungeon according to what I've read, but if you're trying to farm for mats rather than rushing through the floors, it can be a bit of a pain. Even then, 20 floors to the end is a long way to go before the danger level basically forces you to back out as you can't save in those dungeons and lose all items and progress you've made if you die. You also can't unlock the ability to start on the later floors of the forest dream door until post game.

There's stuff you can only get from that dungeon, and it can really only be found at lvl 30+ outside of stupidly high RNG luck on 20+. Even on 30+ it's still rare, and some of it only shows up on certain floors. A flower item used for crafting high level gear and researching high tier magic will only drop on the forest type floors for example. Meaning you have to get through 10 floors where you aren't likely to find these items with every attempt you make to farm them.

On the one hand, I do like the risk reward thing going on there, but on the other hand, finding a rare material or item means it's probably best to jump out and save, and then make your way back through the 10 levels to get to the area you can find more, which is a pain.

You can only knock the danger level down once on most floors using an orb currency you get from the dungeon that doesn't persist when you leave, and it pretty much prices you out of doing it after about 4-5 times, which means clearing floors and fully looting them isn't feasible until you max out your levels. The first few times are cheap, but then it makes a massive jump.

You can run into NPCs that can drop it, but some of them have a chance to raise it, and one will wipe out all your orbs doing it. They don't exactly show up frequently either, so you have to get really lucky to find them on a later floor.

There are enough orbs to keep doing it, but gathering enough to drop the timer means killing a bunch of enemies, which wastes a lot of time. Which means the danger timer will probably go up twice in the time that it takes you to gather enough to drop it once.

You also use orbs for other things, such as unlocking certain chests. There are two types, one where a set amount opens the chest, and one that appears after some bosses where you just dump what you have and how many you dump determines how rare the item inside is. Meaning you're incentivized to not spend them on lowering the danger level for several reasons, including the fact that the mob loot and chest rewards are better the higher it is.

Plus, it's easy to get lost even with the door tracking ability, which eats up time if you're trying to reach the end. The levels are procedural so there is no map to follow, and you can't access your map anyway. Good RNG and smart spending of orbs to lower the level probably could get you to the end of the dungeon at around danger level 3 if you head straight for the doors and avoid most enemies. Even then I think you'd need to be at least lvl 100 to have a reasonable chance of surviving the boss.

Lair of the Lost Lord, on the other hand, doesn't have the danger mechanic in the dungeon, and there are a lot more floors [100 I believe] so the scaling is more gradual. Plus, a new entrance is unlocked every 20 floors after a boss fight, without the need to research anything and unlock them. It also has a lot more mini-boss type enemies. Making it much better for level grinding. It's also worth starting at lvl 1 for the boss chests, as the more orbs you put into them, the better the item you get is. Spend the orbs the first time you face a boss as you're forced to exit each time, and then pass the chest up when you're on the way to the next if you intend to go all the way to the next boss fight.

LotLL also has unique mats and a few items, the mats are used to upgrade the dungeon specific gear you'll find there. Plus it adds another tier of weapon rarity.

All that means it's best to do that dungeon first to level grind, and then go back and finish up the forest dungeon. Even though that essentially makes the mats you can farm in the forest dream door useless as it was clearly meant to be cleared first as the weapons are a lower tier than what can be found in the LotLL DLC.

Another thing that kind of bugged me is that "post game" isn't really post game. It just throws you back before the final battle with a completed save, and unlocks a few more quests on that save. That's not unusual, but considering how they walled content off behind post game, it did bug me a bit because it doesn't make a lot of sense that you can suddenly do those things despite having essentially jumped back in time.

One thing I did like was the Pikmin esque skirmish mini-game. It was a nice addition that didn't overstay it's welcome too much and didn't overdo it with the strategy mechanics. There are a few that are story specific, but most of them are optional. Though you do need to do at least some of the optional ones to level enough for the story related ones, you don't need to do nearly all of them.

I also like the higgledys. They are a neat mechanic. The knight higgledys are awesome, as is the one dark type higgledy that has the gravity ability.
 
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Antimatter

Well-Known Member
The Witcher 3 quest in Monster Hunter World is probably the first time in Witcher series history where the actual combat doesn't suck.
 
Finished Ni No Kuni 2 until the DLC comes out.

Post game is just a huge grind, and that's basically all you do. Grind a bunch, then fight a boss.

Wasn't horrible, but beyond the main game is only going to appeal to a certain type of gamer.
 
Started My Time at Portia.

I've played this before, but it was in early access at the time. This is my first time getting into it since it was released, and beyond the first year or so of in game time.

I actually think it's worse now than it was in Early Access. They seem to have added translation errors, the audio isn't as good even though there's more of it, and I'm running into a lot more bugs than at any point I played during early access. Nothing game breaking, just the occasional oddity, usually related to combat or AI pathing. So far, they have been more of the amusing sort than the annoying sort, and aren't horribly frequent.

It's basically all the good things about mobile farming sims, but in a PC game with no microtransactions.

It seriously seems like they were making a mobile game, and then decided halfway through development "fuck it, we'll just release it on PC".

The character designs, and a lot of the mechanics are straight from mobile games. Crafting stuff and refining materials takes quite a long time and starts a timer that counts down until it's done. This can take more than one in game day even in the early game.

You're supposed to start your crafting stuff, and then use that time to run around interacting with NPCs, dungeon diving, and gathering resources. It's a nice gameplay loop honestly.

It is not a farming sim, though you can farm and play the game as if it was one if you really want to. You're basically the village handy man, and spend most of your time building things for other people and doing repair work. It's more fun than it sounds and actually justifies a lot of the running around you do better than something like Stardew Valley or Harvest Moon do.

Doing fetch quests and gathering resources makes more sense for the kind of job you have in this game than it does in a survival game, farming sim, or RPG in general. Most of the stuff you end up doing actually would fall within the job description and hobbies of someone living in a place like Portia with the kind of job you have in the game.

The world is relatively small, but still fun to explore. There's plenty to do and see, but you'll spend the bulk of the game in a very small area, your workshop/farm and the main street of the town. Once you visit an area and build whatever stuff there is to build there, level out of the resource mining area, and finish whatever dungeon crawl it has, there's little incentive to go back.

Also, whoever you marry is actually useful outside of being a house decoration that RNG gifts you presents sometimes. They'll actually take care of a fair bit of busywork if you have crops or animals. [I married nurse breast physics.]

The combat sucks. This is where the "I was originally a mobile game" is most obvious outside of the crafting timers. It's very unpolished. It works, but you'll teleport across the room to hit an enemy, dodging is spotty, and it's functional and that's about it. It's also easy, so it being terrible doesn't usually kill you. It just seems like screen tapping was once the way to control it.

Audio is another low point. The music is fine, the voice acting is unoffensive [I did turn my character voice off], and the sound effects are abysmal. Sound editing is the weakest point of this game.

On a positive note, if you hate the voice acting, there is an option to completely turn off character voices, or just your character if you prefer a silent protagonist. That is one audio thing that this game gets right that I'd love to see in other games.

There's also a "ship" in the game weirdly. It hardcore wants to push you on the neighbor farm girl.

There are several marriage options of various orientations, so you don't have to end up with her, but she's clearly the intended ship for your character. She's the easiest to make progress with in a relationship and has several associated quests that get her friendship meter up quickly. She's the dev's waifu.

The dungeon parts are the weakest element gameplay wise, and several are related to the main quest, so you can't skip some of them if you want to do the story. There are several you don't have to do as far as I'm aware, but you'll want to to get certain resources. Certain ones can be found in the mining areas, but drop more frequently and are much easier to obtain in the mob dungeons.

They are entirely doable and not difficult, and the main part of the game, where you're running around town, exploring the area, gradually building up your Mr. Fixit empire, and interacting with the town are the bulk of the game, and where it shines the most.

Overall, it's worth it despite the flaws. The main gameplay hook is well done, the dungeons are only a minor component and a good portion are optional if you hate them, and it's got that chill out vibe that fans of this kind of game enjoy.
 
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