Monday, July 29, 2019

Truthiness

I didn't post this last week because I was away from my laptop on Friday and, well, lazy on Saturday and Sunday. But my slothfulness does not mean that it was not a quality episode!

Chamberlain and Chance - Truthiness

Friday, July 19, 2019

At least it will give us something to fight about

Days Gone is not grabbing me yet. I have been in this world before, many times, and there isn't much different with this go around.  The gas mechanic actively work against what is best in open world games: exploration. I don't have the weapons I need to fight freakers more than a few at a time. Chance says that you are supposed to feel week at the beginning. If I wanted to feel week I would play something by From Software.

Anyway, podcast!

Chamberlain and Chance - A nerf by any other name

Monday, July 15, 2019

Failed homage

I have a few breathless moments to type. Time to make the best of it.

Warhammer Chaosbane is the third Diablo variant I have played this year. It is almost the most straightforward it its plagiarism. This is not necessarily bad, though it does expose a game to more direct comparison to Diablo 3, which is never a good idea when you are either A. actually Diablo 3 or B. Torchlight 2 (yes, you should all play Torchlight 2 when it finally hits consoles. It's that good).

In that light, Warhammer Chaosbane is spread very, very thin. Yes, there are a lot of loot drops but everything looks th Balzie same and provide nothing more than incremental, and barely noticeable, upgrades. There is no way to sell unused items, they are simply donated to a shop which in turn unlocks static effects of varying degrees of uselessness. The environments themselves are repetitive, with maybe two tile sets per chapter. Yes, finally get to the realm of chaos looks cool, but then you play it through several times and that coolness wears off.

Chaosbane does do bosses up well, just like Warhammer 40,000 Inquisitor Martyr did (I think I am obligated by law to type out the whole name). They are large, fun to fight, and have gigantic pools of health to chew through. There is just nothing new or unique here. Better than playing nothing, but not much.

...

Blazing Chrome is another 'homage' that manages to be much less than the game it is trying to copy. The victim this time is Contra III: The Alien Wars, a stone cold classic from the SNES era. Remember when Konami made good games? I hesitate to call Blazing Chrome too hard for its own good but it has a very questionable design decision that slows down the pace of the game: enemies that appear on screen do not leave until they are killed. You can't run past them and until the disappear off screen. The follow you, and they will not stop until you die. And then they wait around to kill you again.

This makes inching through a level until enemies spawn, killing them, and then inching forward some more the safest way to play. Hardly the balls out action that was present in Contra III. It is also less colorful, the music isn't is good and the bosses are boring looking. Contra III came out in 1992 and this is the best that can be done as a tribute?

Actually no, the good games based on that mold are all called Metal Slug. Time to see what Game Pass has to offer.

Monday, July 8, 2019

We recorded late, honest!

It was a holiday week so this is a day late (or more) but it was worth it. Trust me.

Chamberlain and Chance - You can't handle it

Monday, July 1, 2019

My final answer

I attempted Sekiro. No really, it was an honest attempt. I made it much longer that I did with Bloodborne, and the 90 minutes I lasted was much less interesting and was therefore not documented. My reaction was not one of frustration but one of boredom. I simply was not having any fun. It was not the difficulty that was a turn off, though do not get me wrong, the game is fucking hard, it was the pacing. I spent so much time doing nothing, or worse yet, not doing what I wanted to do, that I didn't want to play.

Sekiro has its own set of rules, rules that player must adhere to lest he or she die horribly, and I could not find enjoyment within those rules.

For example, fighting more than one or two guys at time equals death, at least at my meager ability. This means picking your way through levels as a snails pace as to not alert the rest of the goddamn map. Yes, stealth game, but if the game wants to act as a stealth game at least give me a level or two to learn the stealth mechanics.

I do not appreciate being thrown so willfully into the deep end. Especially when the deep end is filled with shark. Sharks with long ass swords.

The combat, or what little I saw of, was certainly precise but I would not call it enjoyable. Each encounter played out the same: wait for enemy to attack, attempt counter. Counter successful equals enemy dead. Counter failed equal Chamberlain dead. This is not the free formed, open ended combat of Devil May Cry or God of War, this is a flow chart in which all but one result equals death.

'But Chamberlain' you whinge, 'it's gets better later.'

I believe you. I honestly do. But if a game cannot hold my attention for the first 60 minutes how can I trust it do any better with the rest of my time?

This was my last attempt at a From Software title. They are not official in the same category as NIS as makers of games that I can not, do not and will not enjoy, regardless of their quality. I had more fun playing Rage 2, a thoroughly mediocre and forgettable open world shooter, that I did with Sekiro. Want proof?

I am going to play Rage 2 again tonight. And I will play it again tomorrow night. And I will play it every night until I am done with it.