After 7h I’m done 10% (so it says) with Black Flag and it’s really good.
I had first played AC2 in late 2014, and instantly bought Brotherhood, Revelations and III – but after just having completed 2, didn’t start the next one – so typical. When I did start Brotherhood the controls were clunkier than in 2 and overall I still liked the gameplay but some oddities annoyed me. After a while I came back but never finished it. Maybe I was also a little sick of Ezio and his fake Italian accent.
In comes Edward and some things are really a lot nicer in Black Flag. The cities are smaller, you’re not called out by a guard instantly when you get on a rooftop (and this is one of the most fun things, anyway). Maybe it’s also easier, but I don’t have to run ALL the time and sometimes can fight and win. Oh, and I don’t have to remove wanted posters to be unknown again, just wait or do something else – a lot more fun. Also chasing shanties and fragments is nice.
That’s not much, but so far I’m really enjoying it, playing 1-2h per day. Only downside so far is the lackluster save method. You can’t just stop. I do get it that they don’t want you to quicksave/reload “cheat” your way through a level, but oh my, why I can’t I pause for an hour to cook dinner or something, do I really have to keep the game open or finish my objective first?
Finally made it! (Only a few days before Andromeda is released and which I have not preordered, but still)
After 29-30h of playtime I finished Mass Effect 3 (Digital Deluxe Edition) as an Infiltrator FemShep (with pink armor, which looked totally rad). TLDR: I liked it a lot. Maybe not as good as ME2, maybe roughly as good. Scanning was worse and I had to set down the difficulty from Normal to Casual in the last damn fight. Everything else worked fine with a few deaths here and there (not as many as in ME1 by far).
The DLCs I have are: Reckoning, Retaliation, Earth, Extended Cut, Rebellion, Resurgence, From Ashes, Digital Books, Collector’s Edition Materials and the Soundtrack. Didn’t touch Multiplayer, so I guess half of that was useless. It was recommended I get the Citadel DLC, but so far I haven’t.
Apparently I have either 35 or 36 of 50 Achievements, Origin shows both numbers. /slowclap
This time I managed to do all side quests (besides the one that stays in your mission log if you fail to do it 100% on the planet) and I mostly enjoyed them. The Citadel ones were kinda meh, as it involved mostly scanning the exact planet – which would have been fun without the Reaper alertness mechanic which made any straight-on approach infeasible and killed my enjoyment. Get quest, look up exact location in wiki, scan, done, hand in. Meh. Everything else was ok, good, or really good. I think I got stuck not finding the way on one mission and had to look up the way to go. I did most missions with Liara and James. Liara died all the time, but when I tried Javik or Tali, they also died all the time. I was not very happy with the loadout screen before the missions. More than once I misclicked and started the mission early because the buttons are not clearly labelled. But that didn’t really matter, just a small nitpick.
So that’s 3 BioWare RPGs down (and I liked all of them), now I’m unsure if I will start Dragon Age: Origins (which I own, think I got it for free from Origin) or if I will buy Mass Effect: Andromeda. I’m kind of not in the mood for fantasy stuff right now, but maybe playing something else than an RPG *now* would also be a good idea.
I finally started playing Mass Effect 3 in earnest (I think I played for 2h late last year, then stopped again), ~14 hours in total so far. It’s awesome. Playing my (imported from ME1 and ME2) female Shepard as an Infiltrator with a Sniper Rifle as usual, but either it’s a lot easier or I somehow managed to learn along the way, because I’m playing on Normal and not Casual and still don’t die all the time (I did die a few times). Quests are mostly varied enough and only some have some “doh” moments where I go look something up.
I think my main point of criticism are the Citadel quests you overhear that are “get me some X” and the X in question is on one of the 50? 100? non-mainline story missions somewhere our there. Also scanning got worse again. Overall nothing big.
Also something about my character’s cheekbones is off. Maybe related to importing and I can live with it, still a little annoying.
I was told to absolutely get the Citadel DLC and maybe I should, but 1200 BioWare points is 15 EUR (twice as much as I paid for the game, but that’s not really a problem) and maybe I’d rather buy Andromeda once I am done here…
It’s Christmas eve around noon and this year I’m early with preparing my review post instead of playing games. I think that says enough.
Again I didn’t really go out of my way to buy stuff in sales, but it happened. Again I don’t really buy new stuff. Again there’s MMO subscriptions. Again I’m pretty happy with my spending.
- Played a lot:
- WoW: Legion (6 toons at 110)
- EVE (hard to measure)
- Marvel Heroes
- Diablo 3 (S6: Crusader/Slayer, S7: Wizard/Chapter 4, S8: Barbarian/Chapter 4)
- Played a bit:
- WoW: WoD (1 month just before Legion launch)
- Mass Effect 3
- Guild Wars 2 (quite a bit at the start of the year)
- Broken Sword
- The Witcher
- FarCry3: Blood Dragon
- AC: Brotherhood (finally abandoned, Black Flag next)
- Basically only logged in once or twice:
Gaming expenses in 2016:
- WoW: 117 EUR – 45 EUR (Legion), 52 EUR (subscription), 20 EUR (character transfer)
- EVE: 144 EUR – 2x 6month subscription (until April ’17)
- Marvel Heroes: 80 EUR for the Advance Pack 3
- Games on Steam: 33 EUR – Broken Sword 1-5 (15 EUR), KotOR2 (3 EUR), Faeria (6 EUR), Dishonored (3 EUR), Pony Island (2 EUR), Out There Somewhere + Dungeon Hearts (1 EUR)
- Xbox 360: 0 EUR
This means: 374 EUR in 2016, so ~31 EUR per month, slightly up from last year’s 355 EUR, but with a 4 month subscription credit into 2017.
- Amount of MMO subscription months paid for
- with money: 12
- with ingame currency: 1
- Bought stuff in the shop: Marvel Heroes
- Logged in to but didn’t spend money: GW2, WildStar, SW:TOR
- Full price games: 1 (WoW: Legion)
I saw the trailer for Pony Island quite some time ago. It looked quite interesting, but not enough to instantly buy it. Thanks to the Winter Sale it was cheap enough that I got it. (Yes, I do feel a little bad for buying things only on sale, but looking at my games buying history of the last years.. I wouldn’t have bought it, really. So this is kind of the only way the creators get some money. :/)
I just “finished” it after 2.6 hours (12/20 achievements) and I could’ve probably shaved off 5 minutes by sucking less at jumping 😛 I’ll probably continue looking for the missing nooks and crannies, but the game told me I beat it, hence this post 🙂
TLDR: It’s awesome. And quirky. And weird. Go buy and play it.
Downloaded the free FarCry3: Blood Dragon and gave it a shot. The intro is really nice and the tutorial made me laugh very hard, it’s basically excellent if you love 80s movies (and/or Kung Fury).
Sadly I’m just not in the market for shooters as it seems, I didn’t really enjoy the first level and stopped playing pretty soon after. Which is a shame, it looked tremendously fun at the start. But I am pretty sure it’s because of the shooting stuff, level design and general “ranged mobs are trying to kill me”. I think I only made it through ME1+2 because I could use a Sniper Rifle + cover the whole time. And because I loved the setting, the story and everything. The shooting was… ok.
Not only did I grind enough Cake Slices in the anniversary event to buy my 39th character (chose Doctor Doom because he’s 600 Splinters), no, I also had 400 Splinters to buy another one, Juggernaut. Already brought that one to 60 this evening.
I also finished my first Cosmic Trial. Of all Heroes it was Spider-Man. Did some equipping for a few days (not really much play time) and with some less than perfect gear I managed it on the 2nd try where I failed spectacularly with Hawkeye and Gambit. Both of those I thought I can play a lot better, having invested quite some time, gear and money.
I also played around 3 hours of Faeria when it was free on Steam. Was a lot more fun than when I tried Hearthstone, but right now I think I don’t want to collect cards, build decks and least of all play against other people. My penchant for PvP in any form seems to have vanished completely. It’s still 30% off (and early access) so maybe I’ll bite tomorrow. I absolutely enjoyed the solo campaign, but as it’s only ~14 games, I managed to finish that already. It reminds me a lot of Magic: The Gathering, but I really like the board game aspect. If only it weren’t for the frustration of other people’s decks with cards you’ve never seen…
It’s only a small game, but a very good one. David Brevik (of Diablo and Marvel Heroes fame) apparently went indie after stepping down as Gazillion CEO and already delivered.
If you remember Mario’s Picross from the original Game Boy days, Nonomancer is basically this, reimagined. Not very creative, but it still works and kept me busy for around 6-8 hours (for 50 levels).
The key difference are that there’s no time limit, and you don’t get penalized for mistakes – which kind of makes it easier, but you can’t take a small hit to get a hint like in Picross. E.g. decide a 50/50 chance by just guessing and get either a correct field or some info plus an error…
The only downsides are that you don’t have a helper to draw straight lines (shift-click like in Photoshop might work) or play it with a controller.
Unlike Picross on most difficulties not all of the puzzles can be solved without guessing, but you get to choose one of a variety of power-ups to get you a headstart – in the picture above a 7×7 field was uncovered on game start.
As I wrote already, I am catching up on the Mass Effect universe.
I’ve started ME2 not long after I had finished ME1. I imported my original character (would have loved to fix the nose, but it’s not so bad that I have to) and continued there.
The Steam version of ME2 works a lot better than the ME1 one – I’ve had no problems at all (Win7) with Fullscreen and a 2nd screen connected. Either I grew accomodated or they even fixed the horrible menu PING sound. I am not sure I found any of the Digital Deluxe Edition ingame items – if so, they were unexciting.
Warning: Mild spoilers – it’s been long enough, even I have played it now after 5 years.
I didn’t love the combat in the beginning, but I liked it better than when starting ME1. The whole game feels more like a shooter, but also easier (again on “Casual” setting, I’m not fond of shooters anymore, sorry).
I don’t get why they changed all the keybindings. Space is LShift, E is Space. Quicksave went from F6 to F5. WHY? Not as bad as with AC2 -> Brotherhood, but still.
I do like the Paragon/Renegade system, but it would be cool to see if I *really* am at 100% Paragon already. It looks like it, so I’m chasing some more Renegade points, but whatever.
I do like my companions, but I find it odd that they would add Personal Assistant that only sometimes correctly tells me about my mails (mostly correct, but sometimes too late, when I already read them) and rarely ever about other companions who want to talk – but maybe I was diligent enough that no one felt left out because I’ve been visiting them pretty regularly.
The new scanning mechanics are very good – the old one was ok, but with the probes and the graph it made for an enjoyable 1-2 hours of acquiring resources without having to go on a trip in the Mako – which I didn’t like at all in ME1. Also the research system to use up those resources is awesome, although I didn’t really get why it would sometimes show 2-3 greyed out weapons or armor research items. Apparently I had them, as I couldn’t buy them, but others vanished once I had bought them – weird, but not a big deal.
The dialog menu is still fine, dito the galactic travel. The fuel mechanic is useless so far, and I doubt that will change as I finish it up.
The ingame soundtrack is awesome again, so is the voice acting. I only have one slight complaint – when the characters are looking neutral, everything is fine, but if Shepard or Jacob smile… ugh, bad modelling work.
While writing all of the above I’ve been 24h in and finished every single side quest this time. I have all companions, and all are loyal to me – just my love interest in ME1 left me feeling bit ignored.
Update after 27.5 hours: Done. Apparently the “No one left behind” achievement is a bit too hard without reading up, so I lost people.
In general I have 43 Achievements and am missing 9 of them, but there should be 63. I see 12 for the DLC, kind of add up, I guess.
Summary: Awesome game! Can’t wait for ME3 now. Downloading all the DLC for this one right as I’m writing this.
Apparently I should’ve downloaded the DLC earlier, but this is the first game I’ve ever played that kind of did it like this. And last time I didn’t even find anything on that BioWare social site. Too bad, but I’ll just have a look what’s there now. New companion, yay.
This was completed in a bit less than 10 hours, I think it was 8 or 9 – but I could ask for help and thus sometimes did not spend ages trying to figure out a puzzle.
It handles just as Chains of Satinav does, that means you need a mouse to click and the space bar to highlight items you can interact with – if you prefer to have this hint. 🙂
From a story point of view, it’s clearly better than Chains of Satinav – even more interesting main characters (and also not so many not-good voice actors for less important characters), but from a gameplay point of view I liked Chains of Satinav a bit more – but the story was more generic.
The puzzles were mostly doable (had to look up a few times again, but I think only 4 or 5 times. What I didn’t like were seemingly illogical solutions to some things – where I had the correct idea but didn’t use the correct item from my inventory – and I mean… not using a belt when you need a torch, more like having to try all 3 “long” objects to try to reach something high above. Apparently the developers thought you must use this 120cm long staff to reach up and the 100cm long sword will not do, even if they look just about the correct length, stuff like that – not a huge problem.
Summary: Really good game again, and also a nice continuation of Chains of Satinav, but it can be played on its own. But if you plan to play both, do it in the correct order, as this will spoil at least 2 or 3 things in the first game.