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#5801 jamie

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 03:16 AM

I played Persona 5 too, because I liked 4. I didn't like Persona 5 very much, although I completed it so it kept my attention anyway, although for stupid reasons in the end.

 

It starts off pretty well with all the Kamoshida stuff. I thought that was going to be the way of it as it went along, but none of the other villains were interesting to me. I dunno if the game gets worse as it goes along or if I just slowly realised I didn't like it. The writing is really bad, but not in an entertaining way. It's just extremely repetitive, clunky and a lot of the time barely even makes sense on a phrase to phrase level because the translation is so bad. The central concept is busted for a few reasons. Like you said Hundley, the antagonists are just a bunch of shitty people. They've got no depth to them except that they are bad, 'shitty adults'.  None of the villains have an interesting arc because they all proceed like so - 1. bad adult is doing a crime. 2. the phantom thieves go through a dungeon while the adult taunts them. 3. the phantom thieves beat the bad adult and then the adult has a personality transplant and now they are a good person and then they disappear forever from the game. it's just flat, doesn't reallly go anywhere. The thief element doesn't have any relevance to the rest of the mythology or story, either. The game barely even remembers to include 'treasure' that you steal to 'change a persons heart' later on in the game, because it's been irrelevant from the start. It doesn't really fit, there's no coherence.

 

So they were fighting against all of that to keep the game engaging, but they didn't do it. The characters are just a mix of anime archetypes, and like I mentioned, the writing is just so bad it's hard to care about any of them. The thrust of the story is that these pure hearted teens want to change Japanese society for the better but it never goes into depth on what the problems are or why they exist, it just presents you with a series of one dimensional stock villains and then at the end you fight a god who talks utter nonsense.

 

I dunno why I liked Persona 4 so much, but I remember having a good time with it. I guess the characters in that one came off as more human than this one, which feels like a product targeted towards an audience who wants what they are used to and has a juvenile perspective on everything it takes to do with. The problems for me with it are big like the entire premise just being dogshit, medium like the romance stories being perfunctory and ugly, and small like the battle system not really being interesting enough to sustain the length of the game. I can't think of many things to say that I liked about it, except some of the music (there isn't enough music in the game though, a bunch of songs get played relentlessly).

 

I thought it was going to be some good dumb and good-natured fun, but it was mostly just boring.



#5802 pineappo

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 06:31 AM

Lots of Japanese works have the good or bad guys talk about BIG PROBLEMS IN JAPAN TODAY and as far as I can tell they generally mean some or all of these:

 

1. too much technology

2. introversion, people can't connect anymore (see 1)

3. globalization eroding our past / foreign devils !!!!

 

Did you feel like P5 thematically broke from that?



#5803 jamie

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 11:46 AM

It doesn't even get that specific, really. The big problems is just that adults are corrupt and do bad things. They manage to have 2 major characters make several political speeches without touching on any political issue at all, except that adults are corrupt and that's got to stop.



#5804 pineappo

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 07:55 PM

Huh, how strange - ...Do Japanese students of the characters' ages actually play Persona games in a significant proportion? I suppose they must but I never got the impression the series was aiming itself towards kids. But that does sound like the sort of nebulous commentary you'd see in kid's media.



#5805 DDay

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Posted 15 May 2017 - 03:02 PM

I think Persona 5's S.Links are week but man it has style... As game it's good but the story was week and I feel there is no good S.link I liked... Here is my Brake down of the 3 persona games I played.

Persona 3- Has the darkest story Compared to Persona 4 or 5 (which I like) but suffers from pacing issues.

Persona 4- Has some of the Best S.links that flush out the characters but I feel the overall Story is the weakest and it's the least Darkest story (Example only one person dies in this game). Due to the weak story tho stakes are high for the protagonist and friends but not high compared to the other 2 persona games I played. If you can't tell I like this persona game the least but at least they fixed the pacing issues.

Persona 5- Has Style and Plays well and I honestly think this should be the standard on how to make RPG menus. It's a proud game, That embracing it's past and puts it proudly on display, other then it forgot how to make good S.links, but I would say it's a darker then 4 and I like that. but I feel after the first two bosses the next few bosses get more in the gray territory(Like CEO Treating Employees like crap) kind of put in to question why do I want to do this, sure the main cast has motive to do so, but the player is not moved to do so... it's the weakest part of 5. At least the finale Palace is good in terms of story other the dungeon is long and boring and it also calls into question the traitor (not a spoiler since it announced in the begin of the game) motives are week, but I will admit I kind of feel sorry for him. I also didn't like the final 2 bosses and tho the OST is good, I find myself only loving one song and that is River in a Desert.

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#5806 hukt own fonikz

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Posted 26 December 2017 - 03:45 PM

Finally picked up Breath of the Wild. Incredible Zelda experience. It's new, it's different, but it still feels like Zelda. The scope of the world gives me the same "woah" that the Dark World did, or OOT Hyrule Field did.

 

Also playing Dungeon of the Endless. It's like Faster Than Light plus tower defense mechanics. You're trying to find an exit on a floor, and enemies have a chance to spawn each time you enter a room. You have resources to power rooms, which then allow you to build defenses in that room. You finally find the exit, then you have to grab your crystal from the start room and drag it to the end room while waves of enemies spawn from unpowered rooms. The mechanics are a little complex, especially compared to FTL, but it's challenging and rewarding. Just like FTL, you can blink and your party could die.


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#5807 Apocryphal Chips

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Posted 28 December 2017 - 04:24 AM

thanks for reviving the thread!

 

I recently played a game called Night in the Woods, which kind of sounds like a provisional title made up for a game before any gameplay elements or story was developed, and that's about as much relevancy as it has to the game. It's the first game besides Civilization I've played since Fallout 4: Call of Duty Undeveloped Settlement Sim. While playing it I felt a little bad for the negative thoughts I had about it because I figured it was some indie upstart dev, but it's by one of the guys behind Aquaria plus a graphics person who does some neat work so it's fine.

 

I feel like I might have enjoyed this game more when I was younger and either more into video games, or just more naive. It just felt like a pretty hollow experience to me now. In theory it deals with a lot of things that should appeal to me or be emotional for me: a small town run thru the economic wringer, suburbs nostalgia, depression, mental illness, a small cast of character-friends that are supposed to be developed, and towards the end some cosmic horror stuff is kind of tacked on.

 

But I didn't really like the humor and some of the dialogue, which makes up the bulk of the game. I was most bothered by the I'M GARBAGE I'M TRASH trend incorporated into the game (throws up arms in faux-celebration, blank expression on face: "I'm garbage!"). That's a bad trend with kids irl, and I feel it's kind of irresponsible to imitate it in the game like that. Feelings of inadequacy can be represented in better ways than that. Also, a lot of the small-town bleakness felt more like poking a bruise than being relatable in a cathartic sort of way, and it isn't balanced out by the characters' companionship or any kind of burgeoning momentum that translates into a sort of hopefulness that there will be at least something that's positive in the futre. I've even seen this done successfully in anime, it could be done here.

 

The character development itself never really happened much, either. I was trying to spend equal time with all my friends, which is apparently the wrong thing to do because there's a limited number of days you're allowed to have before the end, and if you hang out with all of them then none of the characters are developed very much in depth. It's not like Psychonauts, where it benefits you to go around to everyone every day and see what they're up to (which is definitely the best way to do the day-chapter thing if you're going to limit the number of days). Here, you can only hang out with one, maybe two people a day. And as for the main character, who is surprisingly unlikable for being an anthropomorphic cat, when the game finally reveals the mystery of why she quit college (not a spoiler), it just felt phony.

 

The visuals and audio are often pretty neat... but I dunno, I couldn't even really get into that. When I was younger I would have been super psyched about the style, I think. Maybe the daily work-stress-always busy cycle has ruined me when it comes to such huge time-sinks. Maybe video games just aren't very good in general and people play them more out of dopamine-cycle compulsion than anything else. It definitely felt like there was some "well it IS a video game, so of course you want to do it!" thinking in there. Maybe I'll play it again and like it.



#5808 jamie

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Posted 31 December 2017 - 12:27 PM

yeah i tried that night in the woods game after hearing about how good it was but i could tell within about 20 minutes that the writing wasn't gonna do anything for me at all and got rid of the game.

 

it isn't really an age thing to me, or i don't think so. it seems like a taste thing. it's just middle of the road, gilmore girls quality dialogue. i mean not exactly gilmore girls, cos that's an old show, but that level of 'we're just ordinary folks writing a game for normal people' kind of thing. nothin goin on.



#5809 hukt own fonikz

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Posted 07 January 2018 - 06:27 PM

I played through Her Story. It's not really a game so much as it is just an experience. It's a bit of a murder mystery, but there's really no endgame. You're presented with a computer screen and a couple of readme files, and a police database of interview footage of a woman. You have to enter search terms to figure out this story. Eventually you understand the entire story and you tell yourself that you're done with the "game." It's very neat, you're given access to every video file that you can search for, but the progression remains consistent. It only took me a few hours to get what was going on, but it was worth it for a really unique experience.

 

I'm excited to try the other FMV games that I've got. The 7th Guest was one of the first video games that I ever really poured a lot of time into, so the presentation really interests me.

 

I'm still whittling away at Breath of the Wild. Still really enjoying it. From what I understand, Zelda was initially inspired by Miyamoto's love of imagining his own adventures outdoors. If that's true then it's great to finally see him realize this open world format where you can go make your own adventure from the game. Meanwhile, Bethesda is still remaking that piece of shit Skyrim for the 4th or 5th time.


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#5810 bonzi_buddy

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 07:38 PM

it isn't really an age thing to me, or i don't think so. it seems like a taste thing. it's just middle of the road, [...] that level of 'we're just ordinary folks writing a game for normal people' kind of thing. nothin goin on.

that's a LOT said in just couple of lines, not just about videogames but of the times themselves as well...



#5811 esiann

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Posted 30 January 2018 - 01:32 AM

Is anyone else playing the new Monster Hunter? I hadn’t tried one before but peer pressure & the demo convinced me to grab the full version and it’s a pretty great time! after you tough out the like.... 1.5 hours of tutorial

#5812 hukt own fonikz

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 01:16 PM

I tried Monster Hunder 4 Ultimate Whatever on the 3DS and it's not grabbing me like I'd hoped. Bravely Default is kind of okay so far I guess. I'd rather be playing FFV but I'm going to stick around and see if this gets good.

 

I plugged my Dreamcast back in and thankfully it still works. Got new batteries for my VMU so I can be cool again playing with my Chao in public. Really I just wanted to give Shenmue and Shenmue II another playthrough before III comes out this year (hopefully). I'm enjoying it like I always have. It's very story-driven of course, with plenty of free time to punch the air in the parking lot, practice QTE or play Hang On at the Arcade, or just stand around and look at things. I still have a completed Save file from January 7, 2001. I must have gotten the game for Christmas 2000; I almost can't believe I beat it that quickly but then again I know how I used to be with video games. The graphics still hold up fairly well despite being low resolution. The voice active is funny and stiff, but that just adds to the Eastern/Japanese aesthetics. I've only played through Shenmue II once, so I'm excited to remember how that story played out.


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#5813 Hundley

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 05:41 AM

There's something slightly reassuring about posting on a message board that nobody thinks to visit anymore. Like digging a hole, whispering your secrets to the barely exposed earth within, and then furiously filling up the hole again. Only a couple eyelashes separate the postings here from being nothing more than a dream. The words written here are almost invariably more for the writer's benefit then they are for anybody else.

 

 

so i played the visual novel steins;gate. i don't know what that semi-colon means or is there for.

 

what is immediately apparent in playingreading steins;gate is how utterly repellent the main character, and your narrator, is. if there is one thing that can unquestionably be learned from steins;gate, it's the word chuunibyou, roughly 8th-grade syndrome(more literally middle school second year syndrome), where the sufferer exhibits immature, childlike delusions. our hero, hououin kyouma(also known as okarin[also known as okabe rintaro]), has this, and the story's writers used it as license to have him go around treating the entirety of the cast seemingly very badly. he is impossibly smug, and feels the need to bookend virtually every other line of dialogue with this affected "maniacal laughter" that i frankly found so off-putting that i began actively skipping the voice actor's voiced lines if i suspected that i would have to endure that laugh again.

 

notably, steins;gate is a science fiction game quite literally lifted from the collected works of john titor, so much so that you could quite fairly label the game a comprehensive example of john titor fanfiction. it's become abundantly clear in recent years that the real-life titor phenomena was, as most people probably guessed, an elaborate but generally well-meaning hoax, so it's within one's rights to consider the game an act of plagiarism to some extent. i, personally, do not, but this is a conclusion someone could come to and probably justify somewhat elaborately. regardless, the science fiction of the game is otherwise rather reality-based and literate, sometimes impressively so, though a complaint some have expressed is that the game slightly devolves into technobabble, which is probably fair, but can probably be dismissed as a feature rather than a bug due to the types of characters this game features: scientists namely, both actual and wannabe. the biggest and fairest complaint, however, is that the science of the game is very conveniently warped and re-structured to aid the story. it's a time travel story, but the game takes some bizarre liberties with the concept of time-space paradoxes, and then scientifically cops out by not keeping the game's presentation of memory in-line with how the science of the rest of the story works. it can, then, be slightly perplexing trying to follow what is scientifically accurate about the work and what was manipulated and skewed to service the story, but then, the game isn't exactly intended to be a work of pure education, so i don't know how much you can hold this against them.

 

the glue that holds the rest of the gamestory together is this seemingly typical slice-of-life fare that really never manages to be especially interesting. the characters themselves have relatively dull, apparently unchallenged lives, with the chief point of persistent conflict being their ability(or inability) to tolerate the hououin kyouma persona. you have your best friend, the ditzy but sincere and well-meaning cosplay fanatic, the repulsive otaku who feels the need to repeatedly verbalize his obsessive eroge activities and his reprehensible fetishes, the bizarre catgirl who works at the local maid cafe and unaccountably inserts -nya into every sentence, and has seemingly more latent psychological damage than even the main character, and i could probably keep rattling off a who's who of not intrinsically interesting character tropes that the game provides but does not seriously endeavor to make interesting during these slice of life sections. i found myself thankful in the early going when i could escape all of that and the characters returned to their cheap, childish, makeshift laboratory above the equally inconsequential crt repair shop. at least there they'd throw some science at you, which was a nice change of pace, even if it wasn't adding up to a noteworthy equation. they claim that this game is one of the biggest tear-jerkers in the history of games. i knew this up front, and i remember smirking to myself, wondering how anybody could cry over these people.

 

i was twenty hours into this fucking story without even knowing why i was even continuing. it's almost embarrassing that i even stuck with it as long as i did, as i didn't find much to like about the characters, and the main concept, while something i would call innately interesting, wasn't going anywhere and was overloaded with apparently inconsequential bits of fluff that wasn't making for a particularly valuable experience. they were building something, and i just didn't care what.

 

you reach a point where you realize that the structure of the entire game is just this gigantic, flimsy house of cards, kept together by sheer innocence and will alone, with only the forces of inertia keeping it together. But just when I had convinced myself that there was nothing to this game, they pulled the bottom load-bearing card, and the story collapsed upon itself.

 

This is, of course, the trick of the story. They lull you into this long, deep, comfortable, familiar sleep, only to violently wake you, dazed and bloodied, the world filled with terror, those important to you dead. There's some minimal gameplay in this game, I guess. You have a phone, and people call or email you, or you can call them. It gives you some added flavor text and, much later on, can determine some story paths or one of the multiple endings of the game. You play with this innocently for hours, texting whatever the fuck bullshit you wanted to anybody. It doesn't matter, you'll pretty naturally think to yourself, it's just a fucking phone. You pretty freely tap the R2 key to see that phone come spinning out of your pocket during the first half of the game. I found myself pausing a lot longer before pushing that button during the second half of the game. I didn't want any more of my friends to die.

 

There is a pretty distinct tonal shift halfway through the game, and it almost exclusively involves the characters that you've been learning about and getting to know. Be it my own subjectivity, or something I personally needed when I played the game, the characters in this game really did it for me, though it was done covertly at first. Yes, they aren't individually, on the surface, very interesting. There's something rather dull and familiar about almost all of them, but within each of them remains this critical depth that the story very carefully keeps from you until you need to know it. Definitely rather boring, but from that boredom and complacency, for me at least, came something rather stunningly real and identifiable. You see these characters in their daily lives, their silly fixations and habits, and the game goes to impressive lengths to depict them as actual people, not dynamic superhumans. They're kinda boring, but they aren't unlikable. They're all pretty carefully crafted as fundamentally decent people, with resoundingly positive traits mixed in with all the mundanity. Context, here, is everything, particularly when each of these people get their turn to have their entire lives torn completely to shreds. You see what each of them has to lose, the pain they've all been keeping hidden, and the story is designed to systematically exploit absolutely every single one of them at their most vulnerable spot. That first half of the story that didn't seem to be amounting to very much, seems to amount to an awful lot when it's time for that character's card to fall. It's all a setup, and I found myself pretty profoundly moved by the plight of these characters more times than I could even begin to remember. They claim that this game is one of the biggest tear-jerkers in the history of games. While everyone's perspective is different, and others may not be able to get into the experience of this game as much as I did, my perspective can otherwise validate this claim. I had genuinely lost the ability to cry due to advancing age and an otherwise misanthropic view of the world, but this game has actually helped me restore that ability. Again, that's a perspective unique to me and the point in time when I played this game, but this experience and these words are unique to me, so you'll just have to fucking deal with it.

 

What is probably most stunningly impressive about this game is the overall structure of it all and the way they utilize familiar science fiction to get the absolute most out of the drama and conflict present within the story. The story is one gigantic butterfly effect, where you encounter this constant stream of seemingly random things happen that turn out to be monumentally important later in the story. As some lame chuunibyou with an unconvincing and probably repellent writer persona myself, I find it slightly staggering how they were able to keep track of all the bits and pieces in the story, and manage to tie together virtually everything in the end. There's some minor plot holes and unconvincing pseudo-science that they had to fall back on, but it's hard to hold this against the writers given that the intent behind such decisions were to show more about the characters themselves, and to further intensify the magnitude of their conflicts. If you're in it just for the science, however, it'll probably tickle you regardless. I know who Roy Kerr is now, and hearing the man's name now terrifies the fucking shit out of me, even if he's just some genius New Zealander that's good at science, not some dude inadvertently destroying the universe. Regardless, the structure of the whole thing is so perfect that I almost need to actively note that there was probably some luck involved on the part of the writers, who kinda stumbled onto this completely brilliant idea for a story, and had the dedication and sensitivity to get the absolute most out of it. I played the sequel to this game, Steins;Gate 0, and while it's also a legitimately impressive game in its own right, and is admirable for how it fearlessly takes the first game's most overtly terrifying nightmare ending as its canonic basis, and does pretty profoundly deepen the experience and texture of the first game, it does completely lack the structural sharpness of the first Steins;Gate story. As does everything else I've ever played.

 

I guess my problem with Okabe Rintaro in the first few hours of the game is that I didn't want to identify with him very much. He, and his chuunibyou alter ego Hououin Kyouma, are pathetically vain and insecure, rude, doesn't quite often enough consider the feelings of others, and has an unpleasant texture to him. I'd like to think that I'm not like that, we probably all do. You're subject entirely to his point of view throughout the course of the game, so if at no point at all you are able to connect or identify with the character in the slightest, the game will fall pretty tragically flat. And the first major portion of the game, for me, it did. My impression of Okarin ranged somewhere roughly between repulsion and embarrassment, identifying with him just enough to stuck with the game and experience it with him, but being consistently disappointed whenever this Kyouma persona would come to life and shout something stupid and irrelevant. The game, a visual novel with limited interaction, somehow, incredibly, has a difficulty curve. And that difficulty curve is Hououin Kyouma. Hour ten in the game, fucking hated him. He'd stand up on a table and scream !HOUOUIN KYOUMA! and I wished Kurisu would hit him with a heavy book or something to shut him up. Hour fifty, when Okarin can't even begin to muster even a fraction of the flourish he once could, as the proclamation of the name hououin kyouma comes dribbling, weakly, out of his mouth, without conviction and seemingly lowercase, you realize that the stupid juvenile defense mechanisms we use to defend ourselves against the cruelty of the world is the only thing that keeps us tethered to a world that wants nothing more than to cast us aside, or to bend us to its own cold, passionless image. It's one of the instances of magic in the game, I'd argue. We're all that stupid, frightened kid, praying to the forces of the universe, and whatever indifferent god that lords over it all, that it not take our friends away. Strip away all the guises and all the bullshit, and little else will remain. I ultimately felt guilty for ever skipping over that stupid maniacal laughter of his. Okarin needs this. We all do.

 

I don't pretend anymore to be some great universal barometer for the quality of videogames, and my preferences almost invariably trend towards how much the story or subsequent experience as a whole affects me. Gameplay is nice but inessential, and I don't need the experience to be profoundly reactive, or for me to have some sort of heightened sense of active agency within the work. With that (hopefully) clear, Steins;Gate is the greatest videogame I have ever played, and possibly will ever play. There's a lot more to my experience with this game than I've chronicled here, but in some outside chance a lonely, lost traveler from another worldline stumbles upon these words, I have avoided talking in great depth about any of the specific elements and why I believe they worked. Could if anybody wanted, I guess, but it's dangerous to know too much about the future. Just know that this is a really impressively structured and told story, easily the best I've ever encountered in a game. That semi-colon is the only thing in the entire game that remained unexplained. I still don't know what it means. And i don't need to know.


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#5814 jamie

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Posted 17 March 2018 - 05:45 AM

we're still here you sob

 

we're still keeping a close eye on your ass






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