Archive for the ‘spoiler’ Category

15 is such an odd number for a season, right? Seasons either have my preferred 13 max or the dreadful 22+ format. It’s like they didn’t want to do “just” 13 episodes, but then one of the higher ups called to let them know, that 20-26 wasn’t going to happen either.

Anyway, what I enjoyed most about the episode, was them being on another, “strange new world”. It was an interesting place to see and the crew had to interact with unknown situations and characters. I liked it. I thought it was beautiful how Burnham realizes that this place is a home too, even if it’s unfamiliar to people from Starfleet. The show usually does a good job at obfuscating, that most of it takes place on the Discovery.
Tilly’s antics were a lot of fun, as always, although they felt a little bit out of place, during a “I could be killed any second” mission.
I was overall surprised they didn’t decide to be more “blow-upy” in the finale – instead they opted to double down on their Star Trek ethics. So I guess this season has been a journey towards them – nice save.
The resolution of the Klingon war arc felt a little bit too convenient for me, I don’t see why/how L’Rell would manage to remain in a leadership position, when she had to use a bomb to get there. It’s like a gun with only one bullet in it. As soon as this threat is dealt with, the other Klingons could easily get rid of her after all.

And speaking of convenience, Burnham’s record being expunged… Sure, you can do that, but everyone still knows what happened, even if the files are blank now. Remember how even every single criminal on that initial prison transport knew all about Burnham? Starfleet’s first mutineer? This wouldn’t wipe her perceived infamy from everyone’s mind. Especially not for people who don’t know her personally. I see it as an attempt to fix their retcon (Spock was called the first mutineer years later), but for all those reasons (and more) this just doesn’t work.

It’s somehow sad and strange that (in Star Trek) apparently nothing will ever be as iconic as the Enterprise. I like Discovery (the series) now, I don’t love it, but I definitely like it. I think it’s a good show (especially for a first season, in Trek those used to stink :P) and yet they constantly feel the need to rely on getting some “buzz” from previous Trek glory. I’ve always been complaining how e.g. Burnham really didn’t need to be Spock’s sister to become a compelling character. And that, at least to me, it almost does the opposite. Since everyone knows it’s just a retcon, she actually might have been better off without this baggage. btw: Can’t wait to find out what’s going to happen with Captain Pike and the Enterprise next season (no one was shown in the end because they haven’t cast these people yet, right?). :P

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I really liked the show and can only recommend it. I only have minor nitpicks which didn’t affect my overall enjoyment very much. The books are unknown to me. This too might have helped more than hindered my enjoyment – come to think of it. Book readers often have certain expectations, or have already made up their minds how something would look and are disappointed if the show’s creators decided differently.

My biggest “problem” was probably how copied minds were treated as being immortal. I don’t know if this was ignored by design or if it stems from an extremely different viewpoint than mine. For this bit it might have actually been interesting to know the books, just to learn if they handled this differently.
If someone copies my mind and then kills me, I’m just dead – the fact that there is still a copy of my mind doesn’t change that. Before I would call something actual immortality, I would have to be something like a vampire – same mind/body just without an expiration date. Apparently no one in the whole world of Altered Carbon feels this way about this. Weird!

In one case the show reminded me of the movie Demolition Man, in which criminals are frozen and unfrozen at some later point in the future. I always thought this was so idiotic, since this sounds like a favor, not a punishment to me. I would be happy to live in a much better future than in the shitty past. Who wouldn’t?!? Altered Carbon does a very similar thing. Criminals are kept without a body for a time and then get a new one. This time without a body is then supposed to be their punishment/sentence. So all that happens to them is that they wake up at a later date. Uhm… I really don’t get how this is supposed to stop anyone from being a criminal. Especially in a world were people potentially and supposedly can live forever, they should have completely different punishments for crime. Some examples are even in the show, loss of status and wealth, or a recoded stack which prevents people from getting a new body, after their current one fails/dies. But no one seems to notice this.

Now I’m already at the minor nitpicks I mentioned. The first one has to be that the protagonist is brought back into the world after 250 years. He is then attacked and tortured with the newest/latest tech, but every single time he is perfectly trained for each scenario. So the tech didn’t progress much or at all in 250 years? Because if it had, he couldn’t possibly know about it and be prepared for it. He needs no time to acclimate himself.

My favorite character on the show is obviously Ortega and at some point she gets an artificial arm. This arm makes her super strong and it’s also extremely durable (it can deflect swords/whatever). Now this is completely crazy to me. As far as I know from the show, she is the only person the audience ever meets who has such an artificial arm. So I’m to believe, that although this technology exists, almost no one is using it?!? Why not? The show even focuses on the richest people in this world and yet all of them seem to have completely normal bodies. I would expect that especially all the super-rich people would have nothing but those artificial super-limbs! There is just no scenario in which it makes sense that they would not do this, especially since they are frequently shown as fighting their own battles. The final “boss” they fight, never would have lost the battle, if she just would have had these super-limbs. Or is this why? They aren’t using them just so the plot still “works”? That would be quite disappointing.

Probably my second favorite character on the show is, again obviously, the AI. Of course this AI is killed at some point and quite easily at that. All that was necessary, was a device looking like a TV remote. So absolutely everyone could do it, really. And of course this AI is dead for good. So in a world where even humans can and do back up their minds in the cloud, AIs can’t do it? Why the hell not? This makes absolutely no sense. Sorry.

The next powerful technology that is somehow used “wrong” in this show is VR. Their VR is so good, it can create everything and it always seems real. This negates the need to have a lot of things in real life. Just imagine the possibilities. They are endless. And yet there are never any VR junkies… This is the first thing that would happen if such a technology existed. As if this wasn’t extreme enough, the AI demonstrates that time can be altered in the simulation, minutes can then seem like months, which almost is its own form of “immortality”.

Pretty much right away, the “immortal” people in this world are portrayed as “all-powerful”, above the law and so on. Untouchable essentially. Even people who just work for them can just roll into the police station at any time and order the police chief around and he has to take it. And yet, in the end one of these “all-powerful immortals” is simply arrested by the police like anyone else. The fuck?!? This contradicted everything this show was setting up from the beginning. It was way too convenient, that the untouchable guy just became very touchable from one moment to the next. :D Things that were supposedly impossible in this world became possible again all of a sudden, so that everything could be wrapped up in a nice little bow. After all, the mythology of the show didn’t appear that solid to me.

The guy they arrested was drugged while he killed someone. Shouldn’t this be a mitigating factor when he is sentenced? I would expect that, since he most likely wouldn’t have done it otherwise. His wife, who drugged him, is arrested too, but as far as I recall not for drugging her husband, which (again) made him kill someone. This is quite the oversight, I have to say.

btw: I liked the visuals a lot, shows didn’t look like this just 2 years ago. It reminded me of Ghost in the Shell (yeah yeah, the story was weaker than the anime, but it still looked fantastic).

Will Discovery ever have a Captain from its own universe?

This episode continued to reinforce my impression that they gather feedback and have it influence their episodes, which are still in post (which they seem to handle well at least so far, because I happen to like it more and more). They really just seem to address a ton of nitpicks people have or had. I always thought it odd, that they were essentially on (what felt like) an “abandoned ship”. For example, in earlier episodes Dr. Culber was usually alone in sickbay, as if there was no other medical staff on the ship.

In the beginning of this episode, there were almost constantly announcements audible in the background and there were extras everywhere e.g. repairing things… while Burnham was walking around. I don’t think they ever did that to this degree. It was so “intense” that it (again) almost felt as if it was designed to finally shut up people like me. :D There also finally was another medical doctor talking to one of the named characters. :P
I easily can go on listing things they specifically addressed, which I found odd earlier. Lorca for example. I had to ask myself during the last episode, why they didn’t mention Lorca’s fate at all. Well now they did. Although, I thought their explanation was strange. According to this latest adventure, everyone traveling between these universes, also causes their counterpart to be swapped out. Really? I don’t think the mirror-universe was ever explained this way before.

I remember from Deep Space Nine that the counterparts were usually dead, when the protagonists traveled over, but this was primarily due to keeping production costs low. There are even scenes in which Kira meets her counterpart face to face – she wasn’t swapped out so Kira could travel to the mirror-universe…

Also, Admiral Cornwell’s statement, that a lone Starfleet officer could never survive the mirror-universe, might just mean they are keeping their options open. It’s one of the oldest rules, that someone doesn’t have to be dead, as long as their death scene wasn’t shown and it’s silly of Cornwell to just come to that conclusion without any proof. They certainly took their time showing mirror-Lorca’s death, to make it unambiguous. So maybe Lorca will return as some sort of “badass” in Season 5. :P

But enough with the good stuff. :P The episode also added again to what I always perceived as its biggest problem, namely placing it 10 years before Kirk. 99% of problems I have with the show would go away if it just would have taken place ~50 years after Voyager. Minimal re-write necessary. “We” all know that the Federation wasn’t almost completely wiped out by the Klingons just a few short years before Kirk. But that’s exactly what STD is trying to tell us. And if they pull a plot device at the end that negates everything that happened so far, it won’t save anything. :D

PS: The crew deciding to sit with Tyler in the mess hall was a nice Star Trek moment. This too should shut up people who regret STD’s departure from what Star Trek originally was. The same is true for Tilly’s (probably my favorite character on the show) conversation about fighting the darker impulses in all of us. At least they seem aware of this and are trying to give us something. :D

For a while I’ve been wondering about the robot lady on the bridge of the Discovery, with her having such an elaborate (and good-looking) mask/makeup and what not, while she never has had a single line and I don’t even know her name. And I’m one of these people who know 99% of names on Game of Thrones. :P

But with 1×13 things have changed. The world will never be the same! She finally talked! And it’s not just that it’s eerie, that everything I complain about actually happens the next episode – what stuck out to me was the way this was done. I was immediately reminded of M. Night Shyamalan’s “The Sixth Sense” with Bruce Willis, because her scene had the feeling of something that was later added in during post-production. Just like it was done with Bruce Willis, being a ghost in The Sixth Sense, no one ever looked at her when she said something, or reacted to her in any way. So it’s totally feasible this was just the production staff reacting to fan feedback, adding her in last minute. :P

Oh and of course she has a robot voice. Is it racist, to assume someone must have a robot voice, just because they have a robot face? :P And if you have the technology to make your voice sound any way you like, would you still give yourself a robot voice? I honestly don’t think so! :P

Also, what happened to non-mirror-universe Lorca? Is it just an oversight, that this was never even brought up? Was it something deemed entirely unimportant? Or are they deliberately keeping their options open to return to it in the future (no pun intended)?

PS: I thought Rise of the Robots… uhm never mind, was a better title. :)

PPS: This is the robot lady without her grey makeup. :P

I told you so. :P But seriously, although most “twists” were very predictable so far, I won’t hold it against STD, because at least it means they don’t just throw random shit at the screen but are actually building towards something. And honestly, everyone should prefer that. It makes me feel like I’m on a real journey and I want to know now where it’s going. :)

So Lorca is the Mirror-Lorca and has always been the mirror-version, right? Does this even still count as a prediction?
The “mirror story” is that their version died/vanished during an attempt on the emperor’s life (shouldn’t the title be empress?!?) and then was never found. The explanation obviously is, that he somehow ended up in “our” universe and became Captain of the Discovery.
Lorca has this eye-condition, but it’s never revealed which accident gave him this injury, they especially never show that. So this incident was when he failed to assassinate the empress, right? Also, he said he refused medical treatment for his eyes – out of fear he would be found out?
After Lorca spends the night with Admiral Cornwell, she says stuff like “don’t even know you/you seem different”… And the short war they are in with the Klingons couldn’t have changed him that much, so…

When they took Lorca to the torture chambers he seemed to know a little bit too much about what was waiting for him.

Other than that, there’s not much to say, he always behaved more like a villain on the show and the way he hired Ash Tyler on the crew was pretty much like Captains select their own personal guards in the mirror universe.

So the real Lorca is probably dead.

Also don’t forget this chamber full of weapons he has collected. Really weird for a Starfleet Captain, but super normal for anyone in the MIRROR-UNIVERSE.

I feel like they laid out all these bread crumbs. I will be really surprised if this doesn’t happen!

Ah, Dishonored… Is the architecture and level design of these games the best in the industry, or just very close to that? I don’t know. It’s the best part of these games in any case. The worst part however (sorry!), must be how they always dump a single, short scene at the end and then go right into the ending credits. Those games are definitely all about the journey, not the destination. While this is anything but uncommon in the realm of gaming, this absolutely has to be the worst part of these games. I love these screens that are shown at the end of each mission, giving a summary of everything that took place in YOUR playthrough. The most intriguing section probably is “special actions”. So in one of the Death of the Outsider missions I saved a witch from her prison cell and you can meet her again in the same level outside sitting on a chair – but that’s it. You’ll never meet her again and nothing further will change anywhere. Everything will be as if you didn’t do that. Now I understand that it’s very expensive to reflect player actions and choices in a game, but this is the only big thing where all the Dishonored games really drop the ball. After spending many extra hours sneaking and not killing anybody (obviously you can end the game in a fraction of the time if you just kill everything), I want more than a short clip at the end, saying “Yeah you got the good ending BYE!”. It’s frustrating. I want a real payoff. I deserve one! :P A proper epilogue, at least, is not too much to ask!

But more specific to the Death of the Outsider, I found the idea so odd. Why would anyone want to kill the guy? Without him giving Corvo these powers, he never would have been able to survive the events of Dishonored 1 or at least to have a meaningful impact. He also always gives these insightful hints. That’s pretty cool, right?
The only thing I ever wanted in regards to the Outsider, was a little bit more info on him. And, shocker, this is exactly what this expansion didn’t give me. Instead there is this premise I didn’t really buy into and then it only leads to the typical 30 sec Dishonored ending scene. Great! The thing I want now, what they’ll obviously never do, is have us play the Outsider in the next Dishonored game. Retconning everything is even a Dishonored tradition (they’ve done it in every sequel, at least to a certain degree), so this wouldn’t be a showstoppper.
Spoilers: The only thing I learned about the Outsider in Death of the Outsider, was that some cult performed some ritual on the Outsider, but I still have no idea why and why he was chosen. There is also no information on who he was or anything else that might have been actually interesting (the sole reveal they tease a bit, his name, they completely chicken out of). It’s a complete cop out on anything story related. The game is as bad in telling any kind of meaningful story, as it is good in world-building and creating an enticing atmosphere. The people who hacked all these notes together should have been able to come up with some sort of rudimentary story. Okay, I guess they kinda did, with an emphasis on the rudimentary.
This game was also the first entry in the series which deemed it necessary to call itself Dishonored®: Death of the Outsider™ instead of just Dishonored: Death of the Outsider. Yay! :D

btw: The graphics really impressed me. Incredible textures all throughout. Breathtaking art everywhere. Someone should do a Dishonored museum with only paintings from this game. [1] In one scene I thought for a second there might be some decal stuck in the air in front of me, but it turned out I was under a tree and its leaves were falling… And let’s not forget the lighting effects, those were pristine. Best I ever saw in a game, I think. [2]

PS: The “void leaking into the world” part was “strongly reminding” me of BioShock Infinite. There was only Elizabeth missing making a comment about it. :P

PPS: OWLS! What’s up with the owls?!? A reference to Blade Runner? An inside joke? Did I miss something?

[1] Part of the Dishonored 2 exhibit at the Art Ludique

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dishonored_2#Release

[2] Arkane removed unneeded elements from the engine like the mini open world and overhauled the graphics. The new engine is intended to improve in-game lighting and post-processing to help the game’s visuals, and allows the game to visualize subsurface scattering.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dishonored_2#Development

Most companies manage/intend to improve their games in some way over time, so I absolutely wanted to play Transistor because I thought Bastion was interesting. For whatever reason, I have to say I liked Transistor less than Bastion. The great graphics are back, but everything else feels almost like a step back. They definitely tried to do something here, there are a lot of powers that can be used as active or passive abilities and the mix is up to the player, but it didn’t engage me much. I just picked some combo that seemed to work and stuck with it for the entire game.

What I couldn’t get into at all was the story (although I really wanted to – at first when it still showed promise), which probably explains my lack of motivation to get through this. I don’t think I would have finished it, if it wasn’t relatively short. Even now I have no idea what it was supposed to be about. I waited for some twist or explanation that never came. The characters are (trapped?) in a seemingly digital world, but how they got there, or what their origins are, remained a mystery. I tried to come up with explanations of my own, to make some sense of this at least, but I never like it, if something has so many holes, that the story will only work if I fill in all the blanks myself. I’m not willing to tell a story to the storyteller who I’ve paid to tell me a story. :P

Anyway, the game goes into its version of NG+ right away after finishing and all I thought was HELL NO. The game really overestimates how good its gameplay actually is (this ain’t XCOM). And I think I’ve said enough about the story (I don’t care if there is a super-awesome fan explanation somewhere that elaborates on everything).

So yeah, I wouldn’t buy it again. Sorry. Their new game is a party based RPG as far as I know, this already sounds so much more to my liking. :)

Prey

I liked Prey a lot, I especially enjoyed it more than the last Deus Ex (although that one wasn’t a bad game either) – this is the kind of game this Prey is most similar to. It has such an odd genesis, resulting in having nothing in common with the other Prey, which is fine, I guess.

Prey is an unrelenting exploration game (is the term metroidvania applicable here?). It has a ton of gameplay systems and most of them are working very well, most other games don’t even have half as many. Inventory, hacking, repairing, recycling, crafting, turrets, sneaking, gunplay, zero gravity, scanning device, accessible computers, toy gun, upgradeable suit, upgradeable scanner, multiple supernatural abilities, countless objects are movable/destructible, character progression through neuromods and probably more I’ve forgotten.
I cannot even imagine how one would pitch this. It sounds like someone just trying to throw in all the buzz words. But they actually delivered on all of it. Quite rare. And it’s still fun too. :D

The ending made me mad at first, but there was “another ending” after the ending credits, which redeemed the game. :P If the first stop would have been the actual ending, this would have sucked so hard. :D I don’t know if they intended to mess with the player this way. Probably.

Because I’m so slow it took me 52 hours to complete this (according to Steam at least).
Honestly the game was great, I can only complain about the bugged Kirk Remmer quest. This bug is in the game since release and they should have fixed this by now.

PS: The player can somewhat protect turrets with the GLOO cannon and I feel like an idiot for not realizing this during my playthrough. It says everything about this game that there always is another way to do something. :)

I already thought during playing Mars: War Logs, that their games are essentially like RPGs BioWare would have done 10 years ago, before they “pivoted” towards a focus on DLC, microtransactions and tacked on multiplayer – just on a smaller budget. That’s not even saying that everything in this game necessarily feels “cheap” or “small”. There are a lot of solid RPG systems in this (fighting especially has improved since MWL) and they obviously did motion capture. The movement of the characters ingame, but also especially during fights in cut scenes, look rather impressive at times (or maybe even all the time). IMHO this is done better than what e.g. MEA had to offer – a game which probably cost a thousand times more money. :P

The “cuts” are once again most noticeable wherever it comes to the story and the characters. While I’m usually not looking for mere padding in games, elaborating on a few things here and there really could have helped Bound by Flame. Too often, developments between characters are so sparse, it’s hard to overlook how abrupt e.g. companions jump through “the motions” that are typical for games of this genre.
The game is very detailed in other areas. All the numerous weapons (swords, axes, hammers, daggers, crossbows) look fairly distinct, unique even.

This is also why I was never a huge fan of enormous game worlds. It can work out (of course), but all too often a bigger game world only creates the problem of having to fill it with something (which in turn will too often lead to garbage/filler content) or there will be only this giant dead space for the player to be bored in.
If I would have been involved in this game’s development, I would have opted for a smaller game world. Bound by Flame doesn’t really allow for much in its areas except for killing enemies and finding some loot here and there. There is a lot of traversing through huge areas in this game. Thankfully the ability to run really fast was included. It would have been so much worse without this.

In the end I enjoyed this game a lot more than MEA (having already mentioned it and all), because at least the world felt original and their heart seems to be in the right place. Who knows how great this game could have been, with more quests/side-quests and more depth for its characters (it’s not like they can’t do good/memorable characters, Fatso comes to mind). Oh and I would have been okay with a lower difficulty level. I’m not one of these Dark Souls masochists and Bound by Flame can get relatively hard in some areas. I wouldn’t want to play this on its highest difficulty setting. But people are different, naturally. I can imagine some people would like to check this out because of that.

I really want to play Technomancer now. I heard it still has some of the same problems of their other two games, but since I can live with them, I’m almost certain that I would have fun with that game too. Maybe I also should check out if they are working on a new title. :)

Ever since I first played Baldur’s Gate I and II (which was roughly a 1000 years ago, I believe), I thought there was this weird disconnect between the ending of BGI and the beginning of BGII. I ends on a high with Sarevok defeated and being a hero and all, then II just has you waking up in a dungeon. Now I perfectly understand that the show must go on and all, but it felt like something was missing there. And why was Imoen a mage now? So when Siege of Dragonspear was announced, aiming at telling what went on between the 2 games, all I thought was FINALLY. This made so much sense to me. The only thing I haven’t learned during Siege of Dragonspear, was why Jaheira has a different character portrait in BGII. Clearly being a widow doesn’t become her.

Despite my interest, I managed to hold off on playing SoD until now. The campaign is pretty good and it’s weird to play a new infinity engine game after a whole lifetime. I still had my BGEE saves so I could jump right in. The game itself has gotten at least one new patch in the meantime as well, so it looks a little bit more modern now than it did last time I played. The new journal is probably the biggest difference. It even has a text search now. That’s really cool.

The campaign kept me interested the whole time, I didn’t play any other games until I completed it. I especially liked that they made it matter a lot which characters were in the party. They didn’t just make remarks this time or had a lot of banter, they could also offer their respective skills in dialogs. It makes so much sense, why wouldn’t a party with a specific cleric/healer be able to offer better help than one without?

Other than that it’s mostly what one would expect, but who cares, as long as its told well? And it does do a good job of answering all these questions I had. Mostly. At the very least it wraps things up much more nicely than the original releases did. That by itself is all the reason one needs to play this.

I finished this game (and several others I apparently couldn’t be bothered to add here) like 6 months ago after stopping to play it for almost a year because my PC (or its mainboard) died and for whatever reason I wouldn’t continue right away after replacing my faulty hardware. I even added Blackgate months ago, despite playing it after Arkham Knight.
All the technical difficulties really threw a heavy shadow over my experience with this game. And technically I played this game after it would do little more on PC than this, this or this.

It’s too bad really, because BAK doesn’t deserve a negative view anymore (the production maybe might still, but no longer the actual game and content). The game runs really smooth now and is less buggy than Origins, which received even less love long term. In Origins they never even bothered to fix the buggy cape.

The entire Arkham series might just be a singular extravaganza. At least for me. I’m sure other players can come up with other long-running game series which might qualify/compare, but these have been stellar since the beginning. I’m not surprised that problems arose when they were trying to go THIS big. It’s the curse of the sequel, that no one ever tries to go smaller and be more focused.

Despite this being rather saturated at this point, I still hope the Arkham fighting style and exploration isn’t going to vanish. It’s a damn shame no one considers catwoman a strong enough license to give her her own game. This would also be the ideal scenario in which they could go smaller. Just do a heist game with various missions. It wouldn’t even require a large open world. Building several solid missions would do it for me.

The bat tank/mobile was the target of a lot of criticism and ridicule. I liked driving it. Of course it was stupid that every riddler-room suddenly required it, but at least they tried to properly integrate it into the game. They made it more than just a stupid gimmick and I appreciate that, I have seen games do a lot worse in this regard.

The graphics are amazing, to this day I think this is the most detailed and beautiful open world city every created (for a game). This is probably a huge part of why Telltale Batman looks so horrible. In comparison, one might think there are at least 10 years between those games, although Telltale Batman was released after BAK. Telltale seriously should have used THIS engine for their game. Since both of them had the Batman license, this should have been possible somehow.

Although the Arkham games sadly never were as strong story-wise as I would have wanted them to be (they didn’t even bring back Dini for BAK), it was still very cool that they tried hard to give everything an ending that they ever touched in the prior games. This sure as hell was yet another tremendous task. In gaming, even big franchises usually get shitty endings or even none (if this makes much of a difference). So I’m happy for every exception.

The super short DLC story bits taking place before or after the main story of BAK IMHO only demonstrate, how they could have done significantly more with this engine and world. Why not add a bigger adventure with another character? It seems like a waste. This game would have warranted a proper expansion, think Witcher 3 – Blood & Wine. Actually, now I’m wondering why they didn’t do just that. Even with the debacle of the initial PC release, their cred on the console versions should have been high enough to keep going.

Sefton Hill did confirm they are working on a new project, but there’s no information at this point what this project might be and yet it seems plausible that it will have little to do with the Arkham games. That’s okay though, they deserve a break after developing 3 of them in a row. ;)

PS: BAK probably marks the last game for which I can upload screenshots (or anything), because after all these years my WP space is finally full. :) Glad I didn’t delete all too much just to keep pushing this moment.

Really loved this game and enjoyed it tremendously. Also another prime example what incredible mileage one can get out of great voice acting.

Anyway, the game is about teaming up with a ROM (a robot with true AI) in order to find out what happened to its creator. I know, right? SAY NO MORE.

The game has it all, lots of characters, places multiple solutions and several endings. It even has an epilogue. Finally a game where I can’t complain about an ending being to abrupt!

I’m still wondering what Dana Zane was doing in this game, she was a character in another good game I played a while ago – of course I haven’t done any research, but at first glance these games don’t seem to be from the same dev, so I have no idea how that came to be. It’s quite intriguing though, since I tell myself that I play all these games more or less by coincidence.

The Deadly Tower of Monsters is one of these games, which essentially have only one central narration, but manage to get a lot of mileage out of it regardless. There is even a little bit of Stanley Parable thrown into it here and there. I like it!
The game is built around the idea that a director is recording a commentary track for one of his old movies, which gets a new DVD release.

So this director has a ton of stories to share while playing, but also addresses things the player does. It’s done really well, they have thought of a great many scenarios. While the gameplay and the graphics and the sound are all good, the director and the assistant commenting on everything, is the main event here.

It was actually shocking to me how good the graphics were. Both animation and design were much more imaginative and creative than many AAA games I played in recent history. Finally something that has true memorable and distinctive design and isn’t just some generic outing like a thousand other (therefore) forgettable games.

Without them having to say it outright, I was constantly thinking of Ray Harryhausen, tons of the monsters moved/were animated exactly like beasts from his movies. They nailed that stuff. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone even trying anything like that in a game. I had to wonder if it’s harder to animate something that looks like “stop-motion model animation” in the Unreal engine, than it is to do it like everyone else.
It took me only 5 hours to complete the game and I’m really happy I haven’t missed this fun gem.

Ghost 1.0 has the same name problem, I thought, Dex has. Searching for these games is a nightmare and I can only imagine this hurt their success. They are both really great and I think I’m growing fond of this metroidvania type of game. I can’t say I’ve played many, but pretty much every one I have played was a huge hit to me. Dust comes immediately to mind, which is another of my all time favorites.
Ghost 1.0 has good gameplay, good music, nice graphics, good controls, great story and characters honestly and… Does a good game need anything more? I don’t think so. It’s all here.
I enjoyed the game a lot, although I suck at it. There’s this rescue mission in the game and it took me ages to complete it (I hate that it’s not possible to save during this long mission, it has to be completed in one session). Maybe it’s supposed to be hard, because the menu allows the player to skip it, but geez… I had to do some scenes like 10 times before I was able to pass them. :D In a worse game this might have kept me from finishing it.
The game offers more smaller side-missions after the main story is done. These shorter missions (which have to be unlocked during the main campaign) are also very brutal as far as I’ve played them so far.
The game definitely lacks whatever type of frame-limiter. It runs with ~2700 FPS, which seems like a slight overkill…