Basically made it a point that I'd like a new non-crap Rocket Knight and new non-crap Castlevania. Castlevania especially. Lords of Shadow totally turned me off the series from that point on, which I made sure to mention, and hopefully this will be a prominently occurring point people bring up in the survey.
Final Boss Fake-Outs You know the feel. You get to the end of the game, fight a big boss, and think it's all over, only for the game to throw an even bigger challenge at you in a crazier scenario than before. I find one of the worst things a game can do is have an anticlimactic finale, and this is pretty much the opposite - an EXTRAclimax, if you will. To talk about the best examples would be giving away some great moments. I think one of the best examples that's old enough to not be that much of a spoiler is Super Metroid. The final battle with Mother Brain actually tricks you into thinking it's just a lazy rehash of the final boss of the first game. It plays out almost exactly the same, but then once you blow up the tank, instead of racing to the exit, you have to fight Mother Brain as a giant robot dinosaur thing. Surprises like that are always great. And then of course there's probably my favorite example, The Wonderful 101, which I think needs a whole play-by-play:
This is the kind of premise that could probably be really entertaining if the writers have a lot of fun with it. Sadly, judging from the trailer, the writing sounds awful and the humor was cringey. I have very low expectations.
What Hogfather said word for word. I hate sports games, don't really like driving games, but this? This is fucking ace. I really haven't smiled and laughed this much at a game in a very long time. If it wasn't for Bloodborne then it would definitely be a GOTY contender, but as it stands it's easily in second place for now. I keep coming back to it, which I can't say for most games these days. Watch some videos, and if it at all looks like it might be your thing, GET IT. And even if it doesn't, try it out if possible, because it might surprise you. It was weird at first, but after a few minutes of play I was totally hooked. Rocket League rocks it. League.
I absolutely loved the art style of Skullgirls, but I couldn't get into the game simply because I can't really get into traditional 2D fighters. But now the art style will be used in a Metroidvania, a genre I love? I'm totally down with this!
For a long time in recent memory, I lamented the fact that most movies didn't have memorable scores. Nothing classic, nothing I could hum like the great works of John Williams or Danny Elfman. And then we got THIS, YO:
This is one of the only modern instrumental movie themes that sticks in my head, one that I can start humming and my buddies will join in. Simple yet badass.
So yesterday I finished the game. Or, rather, the main mission. I haven't done anything regarding Knightfall and I don't plan to. I'll try to sum up my thoughts on the game here.
That about sums it up.
In more detail, I actually really liked it at first. The improvements made to the gliding make zooming around Gotham a real joy, and I was digging the badass Batmobile for a while. It wasn't until about halfway through the game that I realized I wasn't really enjoying myself. The tank battles, while fun to me at first, grew extremely repetitive and too chaotic to be fun. Rather than make the battles interesting, they just kept increasing the number of enemies, which I find to be a really uninspired way to raise difficulty throughout a game. This was true of the hand to hand combat as well, just constantly increasing the size of the small armies you have to punch your way through. And once you have a ton of different enemy types, it becomes a frustrating game of trying to remember which button combination to press that makes that particular enemy get stunned. Most of this just relates to the color coding of the symbol above their head, so it ends up feeling like paint-by-numbers. I never found Arkham's combat to be that great, but Arkham Knight really amplified the tedium.
As for the story, I find that it has some great ideas unfortunately brought down by some really questionable plot points. Can't really explain without spoiling, so here:
And then there's all the other aspects that hurt the game. Batman is a really flat character (true of all three games). This game's treatment of its female characters is really lame. Combat often seems like it's interrupting the plot rather than helping it along. Several important characters don't have enough screen time to make me care about them. Boss fights are practically non-existent. Those Kobra tanks are the worst thing ever. Etc.
The Arkham games were never my favorite thing in the world or anything, so this game wasn't THAT disappointing to me. But the first two are still very solid games for the most part, ones that execute their gameplay concepts much better. In the end, Arkham Knight was just a chore, with less charm and personality than the previous games, and I don't see myself giving it a recommendation any time soon.
Back when this show first made itself known, I checked out the first few episodes on YouTube.
It's not perfect, nor the most ambitious cartoon out there, but it is fucking hilarious.
Star Butterfly is easily one of the funniest protagonists to grace a cartoon in a long time. Surprising, since her personality could definitely have been obnoxious if put in the wrong hands, but she is just a blast to watch. Just the way she bounces around is full of a ridiculous amount of energy - you can tell from the very first episode just how crazy it's gonna be, just by watching her do her thing.
I also really love how the show cuts out the bullshit. A girl from another dimension is going to normal school? ...And everybody in their world just immediately accepts it. Done. I love it. It dodges potential annoyances many cartoons run into, and it just lets the show focus on jokes. And the jokes are very, VERY funny.
The Flash animation also puts a lot of other Flash shows to shame just in the sheer amount of movement going on. Tons of bouncing, running, flailing around, it just has such an enjoyable amount of energetic flow to it. It's irresistible, and I definitely recommend giving it a watch.
So far I got Lords of the Fallen, Wolfenstein: The New Order, Rise of the Triad, and The Cat Lady.
Lords of the Fallen was the first thing I refunded on Steam. I got it because I figured it would provide a fun experience similar to Dark Souls, which the game definitely wasn't hiding its similarities to. While the mechanics are very similar, the art and story are not engaging, the clunkier combat, while cool looking, was way too hard to get used to, and in the end the difficulty led me to quit rather than get more motivated to keep trying like in Dark Souls.
Rise of the Triad is some pretty fun goofy old-school shooting action. Probably the closest a modern shooter has come to replicating the ridiculous gameplay of retro 90s shooters.
The Cat Lady is a little horror game that had good reviews and seemed to have an interesting art style with a very depressing story. I love horror and I'm always looking for good new horror games, but good lord, the good reviews just seemed really unwarranted. It's basically like a shitty browser horror game that they decided to put on Steam. Terrible art design, uninspired gameplay, and absolutely ridiculous levels of sitting and watching dialogue play out with no interaction. I'd refund this too but it was only a couple of bucks.
The best of the bunch is easily Wolfenstein: The New Order. This and The Old Blood are just really solid and fun shooters, plain n simple. Not as wacky as 90s shooters, not as overly serious as most modern shooters, it finds a really happy medium and offers a serious and enjoyable story while simultaneously letting the player kill giant Nazi robots with some of the most satisfyingly punchy weapons in any FPS I've experienced. If you like shooters, both this and The Old Blood are very easy recommendations.