19 votes

What games have you been playing, and what's your opinion on them?

What have you been playing lately? Discussion about video games and board games are both welcome. Please don't just make a list of titles, give some thoughts about the game(s) as well.

56 comments

  1. [3]
    Grzmot
    Link
    Doom Eternal. It is harsh, it's brutal, but it's fucking awesome. I powered through the campaign over the weekend and finished most of the collectibles and I enjoyed myself immensely. id Software...

    Doom Eternal.

    It is harsh, it's brutal, but it's fucking awesome. I powered through the campaign over the weekend and finished most of the collectibles and I enjoyed myself immensely. id Software changed some stuff from Doom 2016 and that took some adjustments on my part, but the way the game is designed it really forces you to use all aspects of your kit, and if you do, it feels fucking awesome.

    18 votes
    1. [2]
      Death
      Link Parent
      The one single issue I kind of had starting Doom Eternal was how much was thrown at you at once. Not just in terms of changes to movement with the addition of the dash, the poles, and the shotgun...

      The one single issue I kind of had starting Doom Eternal was how much was thrown at you at once. Not just in terms of changes to movement with the addition of the dash, the poles, and the shotgun hook, but also in how many more demons you have in one arena. This combined with the upped graphics, more saturated colors, and increased number of assets and animations made it really hard for to focus at first. My mind was constantly over-stimulated and I regularly found myself dying inside a pile of grouped-up demons because somewhere I had lost my sense of spatial awareness and didn't know what I was doing anymore.

      It probably didn't help that just the week before launch I had been replaying DOOM 2016 and the way that game has this really subtle, laser-focused system compared to Eternal's much more arcadey, frantic one honestly kind of reduced my enjoyment of Eternal for the first few hours. I had to turn down the difficulty and train myself to use the new mechanics more before it finally clicked.

      I think, on the whole, Eternal is a clear improvement and a logical progression. It's a worthy sequel to a good game. But I do wish it was a little more restrained in some areas. Or at least that it built itself up more gradually.

      3 votes
      1. Grzmot
        Link Parent
        Oh yeah, it's kind of weird situation, because I'd definitely recommend playing Doom 2016 as an intro to Eternal, but at the same time Eternal changes so many things that your knowledge and skill...

        Oh yeah, it's kind of weird situation, because I'd definitely recommend playing Doom 2016 as an intro to Eternal, but at the same time Eternal changes so many things that your knowledge and skill from Doom 2016 is only partially applicable. I really love how the game forces you to use the new systems to survive, but when you master them, you shred everything.

        I also really enjoyed the story and them building up the myth of the doomguy. How after every mission you have the ARC broadcast telling everyone of your deeds, the way you enter their defensive base and everyone's afraid of you.

  2. [4]
    rogue_cricket
    Link
    Animal Crossing: New Horizons is very cute, very sweet. Aside from a few minor issues with some UX flow (mostly the crafting menu) I've really been enjoying it. Catch a fish, sit on a stump, toot...

    Animal Crossing: New Horizons is very cute, very sweet. Aside from a few minor issues with some UX flow (mostly the crafting menu) I've really been enjoying it. Catch a fish, sit on a stump, toot on an ocarina with your friends. Just an all-around relaxing time.

    (PS - always on the lookout for good stalk market prices.)

    13 votes
    1. [2]
      hamstergeddon
      Link Parent
      I love how the two most upvoted comments here are AC and Doom. Obviously because they're two new releases, but the little relationship between the two communities lately has been a lot of fun :)...

      I love how the two most upvoted comments here are AC and Doom. Obviously because they're two new releases, but the little relationship between the two communities lately has been a lot of fun :)

      Been playing AC pretty much exclusively since it launched. I rushed the first few days, but now that my house is upgraded twice and I've got new villagers arriving, I'm taking it a bit slower to focus on gathering fish, bugs, and fossils.

      4 votes
      1. Death
        Link Parent
        I kind secretly hoped AC and Doom would have Easter eggs referencing each other but I guess they wouldn't have had the time to get that cleared before launch. The official DOOM twitter account...

        I kind secretly hoped AC and Doom would have Easter eggs referencing each other but I guess they wouldn't have had the time to get that cleared before launch. The official DOOM twitter account getting in on the meme was amazing though.

        4 votes
    2. nothis
      Link Parent
      I first wasn’t sure if it’s just some kind of Pavlovian reward loop but something about the way it’s doing the repetitive, grindy bits is just... nice. No monetizing trying to creep up from behind...

      I first wasn’t sure if it’s just some kind of Pavlovian reward loop but something about the way it’s doing the repetitive, grindy bits is just... nice. No monetizing trying to creep up from behind (despite how easy it would be for a game like that - I’d dare an American multi-billion-dollar company to muster that level of restraint). No needless details but everything that’s there is just so lovingly done.

      I just recently built a few random things and just sat there, looking around, listening to the breeze and managed to let out an absolutely freeing sigh, the kind I hadn’t experienced since the goddamn Coronavirus lockdowns started (and - because of all kinds of private and work stress - a good few weeks before). It’s like a celebration of normalcy. Just letting things be things and keeping up a friendly vibe.

      I never played an AC game before, I admit that previous entries might have felt too barebones maybe? But I’m all in with New Horizons. I totally get it now!

      3 votes
  3. [10]
    cwagner
    Link
    Been playing Stellaris with the new Federation DLC. Federations finally make sense, it runs much faster and origins are super fun :)

    Been playing Stellaris with the new Federation DLC. Federations finally make sense, it runs much faster and origins are super fun :)

    10 votes
    1. [2]
      cfabbro
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      I recently started playing Stellaris again too and it's been great so far. I absolutely love the new Origins too (can't wait to try them all), and it looks like the AI is finally not totally shit...

      I recently started playing Stellaris again too and it's been great so far. I absolutely love the new Origins too (can't wait to try them all), and it looks like the AI is finally not totally shit either, which was my biggest complaint last time I played when megacorps first came out.

      What's your Empire look like? I went with a broken ring world start, gospel of the masses + crime syndicate megacorp, spiritual + xenophile, with +unity +trade traits, and it's been a blast so far. The districts on the broken ring worlds are OP as hell though. :P

      6 votes
      1. cwagner
        Link Parent
        My first empire was a Pacifist & Fanatic Materialist species with Mechanist origin. I diplomated well, got lucky with neighbours and didn’t get into a single war until the war in heaven. All...

        My first empire was a Pacifist & Fanatic Materialist species with Mechanist origin. I diplomated well, got lucky with neighbours and didn’t get into a single war until the war in heaven. All research is already at repeatable stages. Built a full ringworld, sentry array, dyson sphere, matter decompressor, assembly and the war mmegastructure. All built by my species of robot. Okay, and with the help of an insane amount of refuges and migrants :D At that point my fleet was larger than any but the FEs and I decided that I need to up the difficulty if I play a peaceful species again ;)

        I stopped playing that one and decided to for once fight a bit and made the Khell'Zen space orc empire. Authoritarian and Fanatic Materialists. Origin is "On the Shoulders of Giants" and wow, that is a cool story and some juicy bonuses, even if it occupies a science ship for many years.
        When I found my first neighbor, it was a fanatic Militarist and Xenophobe and I thought fuck. Shortly after I found their other neighbor and realized they are the unlucky ones as they were fully locked in between me and a devouring swarm. Turned out they were right to be Xenophobes and I now have a lot of slaves.

        3 votes
    2. [5]
      Grawlix
      Link Parent
      I just started playing! Though just the base game, and Utopia after I tried out the base game, enjoyed it, and because I couldn't resist the ability to build megastructures. Like other Paradox...

      I just started playing! Though just the base game, and Utopia after I tried out the base game, enjoyed it, and because I couldn't resist the ability to build megastructures. Like other Paradox games, I'll pick up the other DLC eventually, and probably when they're on sale. :p

      And as with all grand strategy games, my discover pattern is to stat a new game, go until I screw something up, read up about it, and start over. I'm currently wrestling with planet management.

      5 votes
      1. [4]
        cwagner
        Link Parent
        I have all DLC, but only because I’ve been playing Stellaris since release, 615 hours currently ;) And that’s mostly my play style as well. But I play on lower difficulties and I’m not very good....

        I have all DLC, but only because I’ve been playing Stellaris since release, 615 hours currently ;)

        And that’s mostly my play style as well. But I play on lower difficulties and I’m not very good. But I’m having fun :D

        3 votes
        1. [3]
          Grawlix
          Link Parent
          Coming from Crusader Kings 2, I get it. :p I've got most of the expansions for that, and have played for ~400 hours. So far it looks like Stellaris is going to hook me just the same. Honestly,...

          Coming from Crusader Kings 2, I get it. :p I've got most of the expansions for that, and have played for ~400 hours. So far it looks like Stellaris is going to hook me just the same. Honestly, just a few days ago, I was playing CK2, thought, "I would love a sci-fi grand strategy game," only to find out Paradox made one a few years ago. Easy buy.

          Honestly, to just figure things out, I'm playing with a tiny map, no other AIs, postponing the mid- and end-game crises, etc. Basically just playing it as an empire building sandbox. I can't wait to figure out how to build a perfect society, start a new game with more difficult settings, and immediately get wrecked.

          3 votes
          1. [2]
            cwagner
            Link Parent
            I played CK2. I have a bunch of DLCs. I enjoyed it. But it also made me feel dumb :D Stellaris is far easier to play than CK2 imo ;)

            I played CK2. I have a bunch of DLCs. I enjoyed it. But it also made me feel dumb :D

            Stellaris is far easier to play than CK2 imo ;)

            3 votes
            1. Grawlix
              Link Parent
              Hey, despite the hours I put in, CK2 still makes me feel dumb. :p And Stellaris just feels a lot more cohesive. I love that CK2 is kind of a big messy pile of stuff, but Stellaris feels like...

              Hey, despite the hours I put in, CK2 still makes me feel dumb. :p

              And Stellaris just feels a lot more cohesive. I love that CK2 is kind of a big messy pile of stuff, but Stellaris feels like everything is connected in a way that makes sense, and a lot of the information is just out there in the open in an understandable way. It feels like playing a board game.

              3 votes
    3. JoylessAubergine
      Link Parent
      You guys have made me redownload Stellaris again for the first time in a year. Going to play a game or two and then see which DLC to pick up.

      You guys have made me redownload Stellaris again for the first time in a year. Going to play a game or two and then see which DLC to pick up.

      3 votes
    4. Death
      Link Parent
      I caved and bought all other DLCs, including apocalypse, on sale shortly after Federations dropped. Origins are a great addition and add a lot of new flavor but honestly it's the new Envoys,...

      I caved and bought all other DLCs, including apocalypse, on sale shortly after Federations dropped. Origins are a great addition and add a lot of new flavor but honestly it's the new Envoys, Federations, and Galactic Community systems that stand out to me. They finally managed to make diplomacy less of a lottery of "which shitty neighbor are you" and gave some much needed variety and purpose to the Federations, which previously were either stupidly broken or just a bunch of losers mooching off of you. I especially like how you can now, technically, move in such a way that you can subtly take sole control of either the federation or the Galactic Community through things like the Favor system. Lots of empires will happily trade favors for some scraps of rare resources, which is fun for now but I hope they kind of fix that because it's getting to a point where it's maybe a little too easy.

      2 votes
  4. [2]
    TheJorro
    Link
    I've been playing Call of Duty Warzone, the free-to-play battle royale mode released for the latest CoD game, Modern Warfare (which seems to be a reboot of CoD4: Modern Warfare?). And, honestly,...

    I've been playing Call of Duty Warzone, the free-to-play battle royale mode released for the latest CoD game, Modern Warfare (which seems to be a reboot of CoD4: Modern Warfare?). And, honestly, I've put a surprising amount of time into it. More than I have put into any multiplayer game (that isn't co-op) in years.

    I've played a few different ones and wasn't feeling particularly engaged going in but I ended up playing this all weekend. I think the biggest thing is that this game has some of the lowest barriers to entry out of any BR game I've tried, and that's probably because it's a Call of Duty.

    Even if you don't play CoD games regularly, or haven't since the late 2000's, you generally already know how to play it. Two guns, aim-down-sights, how grenades work, etc. Even behind that, the feel of the game is far more familiar to most than a standalone title. One of my biggest difficulties with getting into Apex Legends was that I couldn't figure out how I should balance movement with aiming—I hear it's closer to Fortnite than it is PUBG, and I don't play Fortnite at all. With this game, no such trouble. CoD is pretty easy, intuitive, and simple from a mechanical perspective.

    It's also generally a lot simpler than every other BR I've tried. More familiar items and weapons around, less factors to worry about (like inventory, loot, attachments), and more time spent in the action. I really like the addition of the gulag, it helps to lighten the stress load when playing a BR game quite a lot, and I wouldn't be surprised if more BRs start adding something like this. It's a small change with a major payoff.

    There's also a Plunder mode to the game that isn't BR, but another game mode using its general rulesets and mechanics. The goal here is to collect $1mm first, not to survive. So there are respawns, much better quality weapons laying around, and a different focus. If you like the idea of BRs but not the tension and feeling of not knowing how the round will turn out, Plunder seems to be a great compromise. I enjoy the mode quite a lot because I don't care about winning it, but I do enjoy playing within it.

    Also, I won! I've never won a BR game before! It actually feels like the average person has a chance in this game thanks to its simplicity, there's no crazy advanced mechanics or powers you need to know (like in Fortnite and Apex Legends), nor learning what all the weapons and attachments and tertiary items are (PUBG). It feels closest to BF1's, which was the last one I liked, but CoD's mechanics are frankly more polished and satisfying when it comes to smaller scale firefights anyway.

    If there's one part of it I could do without, it's the match audio/visual HUD cues and designs. They are specifically designed to be as in-your-face and alarming as possible, which gets annoying when you're holed up and listening for footsteps.

    So if you're at all curious, give it a try. For what it's worth, considering its size, it runs amazingly fast on an HDD.

    10 votes
    1. Cleb
      Link Parent
      Had the luxury of playing this a few times on my cousin's PS4 recently, since the toaster I use for a personal computer couldn't hope to run it, and I agree that having pretty much any past...

      Had the luxury of playing this a few times on my cousin's PS4 recently, since the toaster I use for a personal computer couldn't hope to run it, and I agree that having pretty much any past knowledge of a CoD game will make it immediately appealing if you have some enjoyment of that style of gameplay still in you. I hadn't played a CoD game for something like 5, 6, 7 years or so and I picked this up and it was like putting on old gloves that still fit me. I'm also a fan of the gulag system, and honestly I think I'm just more of a fan of battle royales that implement a respawn system at this point. Mitigation of the whole "search for game -> wait for game to start in lobby -> drop -> die to some off-view bullshit -> queue again" series of events, even if it's one extra life, is a big plus in my book. I've yet to win a standard royale or give Plunder a real shot, but I agree with pretty much everything else you said here. I find it to be a really nice twist to the popcorn shooter gameplay that CoD (is/used to be) one of the most satisfying at doing.

      3 votes
  5. knocklessmonster
    Link
    I'm another Doom Eternal player. It's absolutely intense. I have to take it in little bursts. It's quite a bit different than I had expected, but it's a lot of fun to play. I figured I'd check out...

    I'm another Doom Eternal player. It's absolutely intense. I have to take it in little bursts. It's quite a bit different than I had expected, but it's a lot of fun to play.

    I figured I'd check out the new Doom64 port, and it's not bad. Easily worth the $5 they're charging. Night Dive, founded by the guy who developed Doom64 EX did a good job with this port. There is a GZDoom mod that offers the same experience if you don't want to play through WINE or deal with Bethesda's DRM.

    9 votes
  6. eve
    Link
    Animal Crossing: New Horizons as well! I damn near cried when I started that bitch up and you could hear the wind rustling the leaves. I've been playing since the GameCube and holy shit this game...

    Animal Crossing: New Horizons as well! I damn near cried when I started that bitch up and you could hear the wind rustling the leaves. I've been playing since the GameCube and holy shit this game has come a long way. I'm in love with a lot of the little details and the museum is incredibly beautiful. There are some things that could use improvement but color me impressed. I love fishing and chilling with my cute ass villagers. Can't wait to play after work lol

    8 votes
  7. [2]
    JoylessAubergine
    Link
    Playing (and enjoying) CK2 for the first time in a while. Doing a Khazaria to Israel run which i have never done before, mostly because Judasim doesn't have any interesting mechanics. My Khagan...

    Playing (and enjoying) CK2 for the first time in a while. Doing a Khazaria to Israel run which i have never done before, mostly because Judasim doesn't have any interesting mechanics. My Khagan called Daniel founded Israel, however he died in his 40s from the flu and i lost my claim on the Byzantine Empire which was going to my next conquest in revenge for the second temple. I then, kind of peevishly, sent his son Daniel II who was shaping up to be a very good Khagan (27 stewardship) to death in battle. Now im stuck with a regency for Daniels 5 year old brother called Obediah and so not only do i have a shitty character and no claims my planned convention of naming all my emperors Daniel is out the window too. I'm also a bit disappointed the Third Temple isnt a Great Work, so i'm now creating a Great Synagogue.

    8 votes
    1. Grawlix
      Link Parent
      Same here! I've been switching between CK2 and Stellaris. Currently having fun with a shattered world start to restore the Roman Empire (and restore Hellenism). Doing my usual thing, where I start...

      Same here! I've been switching between CK2 and Stellaris.

      Currently having fun with a shattered world start to restore the Roman Empire (and restore Hellenism). Doing my usual thing, where I start a new game, mess something up, and try again with a bit more knowledge of how to handle it.

      3 votes
  8. [5]
    soctar
    Link
    I've been playing The Witness and, by god, it is one of the most quietly brilliant games I've ever played. I don't think I've ever had the experience of exclaiming "oh shit" at a video game...

    I've been playing The Witness and, by god, it is one of the most quietly brilliant games I've ever played. I don't think I've ever had the experience of exclaiming "oh shit" at a video game before, and certainly not after solving a puzzle with lines and dots. I've found just so so many cool and amazing things with it; if anyone has game recs with a similar feel (drop in with literally zero explicit instructions, lots of "a-has"), I'd love to hear them!

    8 votes
    1. [2]
      joplin
      Link Parent
      I felt the same way. I nearly fell over when I saw the clip of James Burke from "The Day the Universe Changed." That clip had been sitting in my head, coming back again and again since I first saw...

      I felt the same way. I nearly fell over when I saw the clip of James Burke from "The Day the Universe Changed." That clip had been sitting in my head, coming back again and again since I first saw it in my 9th grade World History class in the 1980s. I was like, "Yeah, these people get me."

      5 votes
      1. soctar
        Link Parent
        Honestly, that blew my fucking mind so much that I had no choice but to sit and listen with something that I might've skipped over otherwise. Also thanks for completing the reference for me! I'm...

        Honestly, that blew my fucking mind so much that I had no choice but to sit and listen with something that I might've skipped over otherwise.

        Also thanks for completing the reference for me! I'm worried about spoilers, so I'm avoiding looking anything up, but after I finish the game I'm planning on looking up the quotes from all the tape recorders, the clips, the pieces that made me stop walking around the island and just listen. Just amazing.

        2 votes
    2. kfwyre
      Link Parent
      I get so excited every time I hear somebody else is loving The Witness! It's absolutely incredible. Recommending similar games is hard only because I feel the game is truly one-of-a-kind. While it...

      I get so excited every time I hear somebody else is loving The Witness! It's absolutely incredible. Recommending similar games is hard only because I feel the game is truly one-of-a-kind.

      While it doesn't scratch the exact same itches, The Talos Principle is in a similar league for me as a very clever first-person puzzler with some good "a-ha's".

      Quern: Undying Thoughts is also a favorite. It's a bit more Myst-inspired and is more "escape room-y" than the other two, but I thought it was also very clever and satisfying to make my way through.

      5 votes
    3. nothis
      Link Parent
      The Witness is my favorite game. I’ve grown into a massive Jonathan Blow Fan over the years (he also made Braid) and if you’re interested in more academic game design theory (and honestly, The...

      The Witness is my favorite game. I’ve grown into a massive Jonathan Blow Fan over the years (he also made Braid) and if you’re interested in more academic game design theory (and honestly, The Witness is basically a game about playing games), I highly recommend watching some of his talks on that subject on YouTube.

      If you liked The Witness, I recommend giving Stephen’s Sausage Roll a try. Its aesthetic is harder to swallow but in terms of raw game design it’s one of the few games out there that can be compared.

      5 votes
  9. [2]
    Cleb
    Link
    I came back to grinding for a higher time on Devil Daggers in the last couple of weeks, and last night I finally managed to get the single achievement after 158 hours recorded in Steam. I took a...

    I came back to grinding for a higher time on Devil Daggers in the last couple of weeks, and last night I finally managed to get the single achievement after 158 hours recorded in Steam. I took a screenshot of the post-game leaderboard after that run, and of another run I did a bit afterward. I don't play on stopping here, I fell in love with this game because of its completely barebones focus on movement, aim, and self-improvement. Nothing ever changed about the game to make it easier or something. I just learned and got better. And that's such a wonderful feeling that I had to be reminded of through something like this game.

    I've also been playing the Steins;Gate VN at a slower pace than what I'd usually play a VN at, because I want to savour it. One thing I admire about it in the ~5 chapters I've played through so far is that the dialogue is very... deja-vu inducing. I've had multiple moments in this where I feel like I've seen almost the exact same conversation happen, and it's right after I boot the game back up for the day. If that pacing is that meticulous on purpose, then I can't wait to get into the later parts as well.

    6 votes
    1. no_exit
      Link Parent
      Devil Daggers is basically a perfect game. I wish there was more of it since the art and feel of it is so fantastic, but of course the reason it's so good is its laser focus like you mentioned. I...

      Devil Daggers is basically a perfect game. I wish there was more of it since the art and feel of it is so fantastic, but of course the reason it's so good is its laser focus like you mentioned. I still check Sorath's twitter occasionally for news on a new project or something even though they haven't posted since 2018.

      4 votes
  10. emnii
    Link
    I bought Doom Eternal and spent my weekend beating Doom 64. Doom 64 is the Doom game I've spent the least time with. I didn't own an N64. I only recently beat Doom 64 for the first time last year,...

    I bought Doom Eternal and spent my weekend beating Doom 64.

    Doom 64 is the Doom game I've spent the least time with. I didn't own an N64. I only recently beat Doom 64 for the first time last year, thanks to Doom 64 EX. I find most of the sprite redraws terribly ugly, but the gameplay is close enough to Doom. The levels rely on traps more often than I like, but it's still fun. The Lost Levels in this new release are rather fun, and a good challenge. The last "lost" level is infinitely better than the conclusion to the original game, if only because it doesn't rely on the player having found secret items on secret levels. The fully powered Unmaker absolutely melts demons and that's fun.

    I guess now I should play Doom Eternal.

    6 votes
  11. cardigan
    Link
    Animal Crossing: New Horizons. I don't play too many games, but always make an exception when one of these comes out. They have always meant a lot to me, being a latchkey kid and growing into an...

    Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

    I don't play too many games, but always make an exception when one of these comes out. They have always meant a lot to me, being a latchkey kid and growing into an adult in a similar situation. My favorite part remains writing letters: even though the way the villagers "parse" them is very simple, or even nonexistent, their responses are very sweet. I'm glad that you're able to send letters over the internet now as well.

    I actually don't like how this title gives you nearly unlimited ability to edit the island and micromanage the animals' lives. It seems kind of a dangerous trend to me, making a formula that used to be much more simple into a kind of environment exploitation simulator. I would really prefer not to have to pick where the animals lived, or choose every single item that's going to go into their house. I like pretending they're actually neighbors, and that's not something any neighbor does to another. It's a little creepy.

    This is also the first entry that I've played in Japanese. With the exception of some of the fish and bug puns, it's fairly easy to understand, and is probably accessible to people at a high N4 level of the JLPT. It's fun to compare differences in the localization with my friends playing the English, Spanish, and German versions. It makes me curious about emulating the original どうぶつの森 N64 game, but I'm not sure if any emulator in common use has support for the clock.

    6 votes
  12. [3]
    joplin
    Link
    I downloaded the Road to Gehenna DLC for The Talos Principle. It's a worthy successor to the original. I'm having a lot of fun with it. I'd actually say it's a bit harder than the original!

    I downloaded the Road to Gehenna DLC for The Talos Principle. It's a worthy successor to the original. I'm having a lot of fun with it. I'd actually say it's a bit harder than the original!

    5 votes
    1. [2]
      Deimos
      Link Parent
      I loved that DLC, especially the interesting online-community elements it had in it. I'd say that's an extremely appropriate choice for right now with all the isolation themes.

      I loved that DLC, especially the interesting online-community elements it had in it. I'd say that's an extremely appropriate choice for right now with all the isolation themes.

      4 votes
      1. joplin
        Link Parent
        Oh, good point! It is so sad to look in on the robot you're currently trying to free and see it sitting on bench with its head in its hands.

        I'd say that's an extremely appropriate choice for right now with all the isolation themes.

        Oh, good point! It is so sad to look in on the robot you're currently trying to free and see it sitting on bench with its head in its hands.

        3 votes
  13. aphoenix
    Link
    I recently picked up Two Point Hospital in a Humble Monthly bundle, and it's been a fun little business simulator / city builder sort of game. I've only played a couple of hospitals, but it's...

    I recently picked up Two Point Hospital in a Humble Monthly bundle, and it's been a fun little business simulator / city builder sort of game. I've only played a couple of hospitals, but it's delightful and silly. I like the idea that there's an epidemic of Jest Infection - too many people think they're clowns! - or lycanthropy, and you cure people via application of ridiculous therapy, or drugs. I found the learning curve to be very easy, but there's some hidden depths to making things run smoothly. If you pick it up, I'd recommend not really looking into strategy guides, and just seeing if you can make a half decent hospital. And make sure you hire a ghostbuster as a janitor, so someone can clean up the ectoplasm and catch the spirits of the departed!

    5 votes
  14. [5]
    Akir
    Link
    I have been stuck on a cruise ship for the past few weeks, but thankfully before I left I picked up the new Android port of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. And while playing the game with...

    I have been stuck on a cruise ship for the past few weeks, but thankfully before I left I picked up the new Android port of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. And while playing the game with touchscreen controls is exactly as frustrating as you would think, it's still as fun as it has ever been.

    Unfortunately it also came with the same irritation as when it came out since I was unable to figure out how to get past the Richter fight and there was no internet connection for me to find an answer. So instead of finishing the game I played the new-to-me Richter and Maria modes. You can play through the first castle as them fairly easily, but the second castle is almost impossible because those characters can't turn into bats or smoke. Both of them have moves that can "cheat" you higher but they are hard to pull off even with physical buttons to press.

    5 votes
    1. [4]
      joplin
      Link Parent
      Oh no! Are you on a quarantined ship? If so, I hope you're able to get off soon! Stay healthy!

      I have been stuck on a cruise ship for the past few weeks

      Oh no! Are you on a quarantined ship? If so, I hope you're able to get off soon! Stay healthy!

      2 votes
      1. [3]
        Akir
        Link Parent
        No, I am home now. The only reason why I was stuck was because it was a long cruise and most of the ports were canceled. I was actually pretty lucky to avoid sickness during this time but now my...

        No, I am home now. The only reason why I was stuck was because it was a long cruise and most of the ports were canceled. I was actually pretty lucky to avoid sickness during this time but now my fiance has come down with something, so I figure it's just a matter of time for me.

        6 votes
        1. [2]
          joplin
          Link Parent
          Glad to hear you made it home safely. Sorry about your fiancé! I hope they feel better soon and I hope you are able to avoid it or that it's mild if you do get it.

          Glad to hear you made it home safely. Sorry about your fiancé! I hope they feel better soon and I hope you are able to avoid it or that it's mild if you do get it.

          5 votes
          1. Akir
            Link Parent
            Thank you, I appreciate it.

            Thank you, I appreciate it.

            4 votes
  15. reese
    (edited )
    Link
    Elder Scrolls Online, so apparently I will never get anything done IRL ever again. I participated in the beta and bought the base game years back, but stopped playing after a short while because I...

    Elder Scrolls Online, so apparently I will never get anything done IRL ever again.

    I participated in the beta and bought the base game years back, but stopped playing after a short while because I thought it was clunky and incomplete. To the contrary, now it has so much breadth and depth of content, so much to explore without purchasing any additional content, that immersion is inevitable—playing in first-person mode really does it for me. I explore maps and do random quests just like I would in any other Elder Scrolls game. What's more, this game seems loyal to the franchise and lore, and all dialogue is voiced by familiar professional actors.

    The game's challenging, even though all encounters scale to one's level. Guilds actually make sense for once, since they are predicated on trade. Player housing and the cosmetic upgrades are icing on the cake. Dungeons are fun and fulfilling. Random events are refreshing. The skill system permits a great deal of experimentation and customization. Crafting is, well, crafting, if you're into that. And you will almost always find other people doing the same quest, even though there are like a billion quests. There's always somebody around doing something, so the game feels very alive. Most other players seem friendly and helpful.

    Be forewarned you will ruin your life if you play this game.

    Oh, one more thing, easy mode to playing it on Linux is by using Steam or Lutris.

    4 votes
  16. [3]
    kfwyre
    (edited )
    Link
    Completed: Macbat 64: This was a neat, deliberate throwback to the N64 era. Probably not worth it if you're not nostalgic for that generation of games, but probably worth it if you are (it only...

    Completed:

    Macbat 64: This was a neat, deliberate throwback to the N64 era. Probably not worth it if you're not nostalgic for that generation of games, but probably worth it if you are (it only takes about an hour to finish). Currently available for free on itch.io.

    AER: Memories of Old: This is an "evening-size" indie exploration adventure. Half of the game is you flying around as a bird, navigating a world of floating islands in the sky. The other half is you exploring intricate underground architecture and caverns. There's also some lore regarding a creation fable and a world savior that I didn't really pay much attention to. I loved the flying more than the spelunking, but overall the game was nice, calm, and visually stimulating.

    Ongoing:

    Roundguard is roguelite Peggle. It's a nice, simple time-killer.

    Demon Crawl is roguelite Minesweeper. It's a nice, simple time-killer.

    A Robot Named Fight is roguelite Metroid. It's a nice, simple time-killer.

    Void Bastards is roguelite System Shock 2. It's a nice, simple time-killer.

    Did I overextend myself with all of these similar games? Probably. Am I enjoying myself? Absolutely.


    EDIT: I forgot to mention that I'm also playing through Tyrian 2000 which is not a roguelike in any form! I talked about my love for the game in more detail here. It's a great classic scrolling shooter.

    4 votes
    1. [2]
      emnii
      Link Parent
      I saw all your Steam achievements over the weekend and I thought "wtf is kfwyre doing?" But I do the exact same thing sometimes, typically after I've finished something I really liked and don't...

      I saw all your Steam achievements over the weekend and I thought "wtf is kfwyre doing?" But I do the exact same thing sometimes, typically after I've finished something I really liked and don't know what to play next.

      How Peggle is Roundguard? Would someone who's played like 100 hours of Peggle get into it? Does it ever play Ode to Joy at the end of a level?

      4 votes
      1. kfwyre
        Link Parent
        Lol, that's a fair question! And one that I've asked myself frequently. For many, many years. :D At present, I'm mostly managing anxiety through digital distraction. If you've played 100 hours of...

        "wtf is kfwyre doing?"

        Lol, that's a fair question! And one that I've asked myself frequently. For many, many years. :D

        At present, I'm mostly managing anxiety through digital distraction.

        If you've played 100 hours of Peggle then you're probably absolutely the ideal audience for Roundguard. It's the same formula, only you've got some stats, powers, and equipment, and the orange pegs are enemies you have to kill. At the end of levels you get loot, and there are branching paths you can take to determine your path through a randomized progression of levels. You progress through each run until you die, then you unlock some sort of permanent upgrade to your characters, and then you can restart from the beginning, with the odds tilted ever so slightly more in your favor than the previous time. It's the now-standard roguelite progression system, only instead of cards, or turn-based combat, or real-time action, the gameplay involves your character bouncing around on pegs in a digital pachinko machine.

        In some ways, it's worse than Peggle because one of the things I love about Peggle is just how effortless and mindless it is. It's the ultimate calm, chill, casual game, with minimal stressors. Roundguard on the other hand, has progression and permadeath, so it's something that requires you to be more mindful and invest a bit more in. As you get farther and farther in a run, you can feel that growing sense of loss-aversion where you're risking your accumulated wins, whereas in regular Peggle you only ever restart from the level that you're currently on. Roundguard still leans heavily casual though, and after a few runs you unlock a rune that makes the game easier, which increased my enjoyment of it significantly because it's not the kind of game I really want to be challenged in.

        That said, if you're looking for Peggle with a bit more substance, it fills that role perfectly. It's quite good at what it does, and any complaints I have about it are less regarding what it is and more in comparison to another. On its own it's a perfectly great game. Charming writing and graphics, neat ideas (the wizard character has a powerup I really like), and a general level of polish that make the game pop in a good way.

        Oh, and on winning a level you don't get the hallelujah chorus, but the music does change to a pleasant, uplifting ditty. They did keep the rainbow streak behind your character intact though.

        3 votes
  17. [2]
    meenit
    Link
    Kenshi (Steam)(GOG): It's a great game. There is an astounding amount of freedom, and it's probably the most open-ended game I ever played (and I'm not the only one saying that). You can quite...

    Kenshi (Steam)(GOG): It's a great game. There is an astounding amount of freedom, and it's probably the most open-ended game I ever played (and I'm not the only one saying that). You can quite literally do almost anything you want, especially if it is highly, highly illegal. The only critique I have is that the early game is super grindy. The only safe way to get money in the early game is through mining and it takes a while to even face simple bandits. It initially makes the game seem very boring, but after you get a good start it's amazing. There are ways you can avoid the tedious mining though.

    If this seems like your kind of game, 100% get it. You will not regret it. It's probably one of my favorite games in recent years.

    4 votes
    1. TheJorro
      Link Parent
      I've been attempting to get into this game on and off for a while, it hasn't quite clicked with me yet but it has so much promise.

      I've been attempting to get into this game on and off for a while, it hasn't quite clicked with me yet but it has so much promise.

      2 votes
  18. UntouchedWagons
    Link
    I tried Darksiders Genesis but the uncontrollable menu made me nauseous.

    I tried Darksiders Genesis but the uncontrollable menu made me nauseous.

    3 votes
  19. [2]
    mrbig
    (edited )
    Link
    Since the recommendation is to avoid leaving the house and my computer broke, I have been playing a lot of videogames on the PS4. Borderlands 2 online for about 10 hours with my friends. It was a...

    Since the recommendation is to avoid leaving the house and my computer broke, I have been playing a lot of videogames on the PS4.

    • Borderlands 2 online for about 10 hours with my friends. It was a blast! Much better than single-player.
    • I also played a lot of Path of Exile by myself. It's pretty cool, although a bit too complex. It requires a lot of hours.
    • A lot of Far Cry 4. A good game, but it pales in comparison to Borderlands.
    3 votes
    1. AnthonyB
      Link Parent
      I loved Borderlands 2! I got into 3 about a month ago but couldn't find a decent group online and didn't like my character as much as I loved the Ghost/assasin thing or the girl with the robot.

      I loved Borderlands 2! I got into 3 about a month ago but couldn't find a decent group online and didn't like my character as much as I loved the Ghost/assasin thing or the girl with the robot.

      4 votes
  20. AnthonyB
    Link
    I saw Resident Evil 2 on sale and got nostalgic for the days when it would scare the crap out of me as a kid so I went ahead and bought it. My god. This game takes it to another level. I think I'm...

    I saw Resident Evil 2 on sale and got nostalgic for the days when it would scare the crap out of me as a kid so I went ahead and bought it. My god. This game takes it to another level. I think I'm more afraid as a grown man than I was as a kid. I dont ever get scared during movies or shows, but something about this game freaks me out. The sound, graphics, setting, and lighting are all terrifying, but the thing that really sticks out is just controlling the character and trying to survive in a game I suck at. I've seen coutless movies and TV episodes that are set during a zombie apocalypse, but this game is the only thing that really made me realize how helpless and terrifying that situation would be. I want to play it right now, but it's 3 am and I'm afraid.

    3 votes
  21. gpl
    Link
    I've been getting more into Stardew Valley for the Switch. I had it on PC but I never ended up playing past a season or two. The Switch makes it much easier as I can play while watching TV at the...

    I've been getting more into Stardew Valley for the Switch. I had it on PC but I never ended up playing past a season or two. The Switch makes it much easier as I can play while watching TV at the end of the day. The portability is really great. I used to love the Harvest Moon games so there was never huge doubt that I would enjoy this as well.

    3 votes
  22. [3]
    SkewedSideburn
    Link
    Well, Animal Crossing, of course! :) This is my first exposure to the series, and I find it extremely calming and soothing. I don't like some aspects, like a LOT of icons are just an icon of a...

    Well, Animal Crossing, of course! :)

    This is my first exposure to the series, and I find it extremely calming and soothing. I don't like some aspects, like a LOT of icons are just an icon of a leaf (come on, you couldn't hire a junior artist to make some more icons?) and I don't like repetetive dialog for batch actions (crafting, asking Blethers about an animal, etc), but other than that -- I think I'll sink a lot of hours into it. It also kind of saddens me that I mostly get to play in the evening, but hey, on the upside the stars are pretty!

    I've also begun playing Unavowed. I don't know why, but Wadjet Eye's games have a very distinct atmosphere for me, I like it. I'm not necessarily into this particular setting (cheesy demons and a shadow organization that deals with them), but the same atmosphere is still there

    1 vote
    1. [2]
      nothis
      Link Parent
      Heh, yea, there's a certain stubbornness, it's weird. I think where it became obvious that it's not a production cost issue is in your house: Suddenly, you can see icons for every single piece of...

      I don't like some aspects, like a LOT of icons are just an icon of a leaf (come on, you couldn't hire a junior artist to make some more icons?)

      Heh, yea, there's a certain stubbornness, it's weird. I think where it became obvious that it's not a production cost issue is in your house: Suddenly, you can see icons for every single piece of furniture! It's all there! Also, obviously, in the crafting and shop menus you can see a fully rendered icon as well.

      I'm thinking it's partially (weirdly placed) nostalgia. They had to do it on the N64 because of memory restrictions, people got used to it, and now it's "on-brand". I think that's honestly the biggest reason and it's the baffling side of Nintendo culture. Other than that, trying to play devil's advocate, I can kinda see lots of complex, pixelated icons to come off as messy? Like, there's certainly furniture items that you wouldn't recognize in a leaf-sized icon. A quick glance at your inventory should make furniture items stand out.

      I'm kinda curious in asking that one of the devs (not on a PR tour but behind the scenes, during a making-of or something). You can bet there's a reason that goes beyond "we didn't have enough interns". It's likely still kinda infuriating, lol.

      2 votes
      1. SkewedSideburn
        Link Parent
        I'm also a bit sad that most of the time I can only play in the evenings... And the dang shop is closed! And some of the tenants are already sleeping! And I really don't want to change system...

        I'm also a bit sad that most of the time I can only play in the evenings... And the dang shop is closed! And some of the tenants are already sleeping! And I really don't want to change system time! But that's the way it goes, I suppose.

        1 vote
  23. TheRtRevKaiser
    Link
    I've been playing Divinity: Original Sin 2 and it's been a lot of fun. It seems like a very deep game, but the volume of content can feel a little overwhelming at times. Also, either I'm missing...

    I've been playing Divinity: Original Sin 2 and it's been a lot of fun. It seems like a very deep game, but the volume of content can feel a little overwhelming at times. Also, either I'm missing something or the game doesn't telegraph the difficulty of encounters very well. I've several times found myself exploring and found myself in a fight that doesn't seem like it should be that difficult, but once I'm in it it is glaringly obviously that I am under-leveled.

    1 vote