Week ending 11/6/14
WELCOME BACK TO GADD EVERYBODY! I’ve actually been home for a few weeks now, but wasn’t writing up any GADDs because I was only supposed to be home for two weeks and then back on the road again for another job. Well, that job got cancelled, and while it’s overall shitty news, the upside is that you get to read more GADDs! I don’t know how long I’ll be at home for, but GADD will continue until I have to go back on the road. When we last left GADD….man I don’t even know, go read it for yourselves! Since I’ve been back I had a birthday (on the 24th) which means a lot of new games for me to dive into! There are some really good games in my birthday gifts, and some really “special” ones too. I’m probably more excited about the special ones than the actual good ones. Also, as you have probably already noticed, today isn’t Wednesday! No, it’s Friday, the new home of GADD for the foreseeable future. With all that said, let’s get to gaming already!
Yeah I leave after playing all kinds of the Destiny beta, and now that I’m back, what’s the first thing I write about? Fuckin Destiny. At this point the game has gotten so much coverage everywhere that I don’t know what else I can say about it. This wasn’t a birthday game, this was a game I bought as soon as I got back home, as as such, I’ve already cleared the “story” of the game and am now just desperately farming in a hope to get more light. I’m at level 24 right now and appear to be stuck there as I haven’t gotten a better armor drop in close to a week now. I keep telling myself that I think I’m done with this game, but then I wind up going back into it almost every day. At this point I’m just playing Crucible, and either Control (capture the zone) or Clash (team deathmatch) for the most part. Occasionally I’ll go into other Crucible modes, but I just suck at the rest, even more so than I suck at the ones I like. I’m definitely slowing down on this game, as my interest has waned big time, and I don’t think I’ll be buying the DLC when it comes out in December because it just doesn’t seem like there’s enough content there to be worth it.
This was free on PS+ at…some point, but didn’t really get a chance to play it until lately when the Share Play feature was introduced to PSN. Now that you can just give someone on the internet the second controller port, it’s way easier to get those local multiplayer only games going. Sportsfriends is a collection of four minigames (with a hidden fifth) that are vaguely sports themed, but the only one of them that really matters is Super Pole Riders. SPR is a 1v1 (or 2v2) competitive game where everybody has a vaulting pole and you attempt to use it to knock a ball that’s attached a rope overhead into the other person/team’s goal. You can do this by simply using your pole to push the ball along the rope, or you can plant your pole into the ground and get launched into the air to kick the ball, moving it along farther. It’s a really simple control scheme using the left analog stick to move your rider, and the right analog stick to move the pole, and it is ridiculous how fun it is. It’s also pretty ridiculous how much I completely dominate at this game, so I’m calling out you, the GADD reader! Come give me a real challenge at SPR! Fazzle1 is my PSN tag, add me if you want to lose!
Went back in and played a few more games of Crucible. Sucked on a few, did decent by my standards on a few others. Still didn’t get jack for drops, once again I think I’m about done with this game.
Akiba’s Trip: Undead and Undressed
YEAH! Now this is one of the truly special games I was talking about! For those who don’t know (and with this game I would assume that would be the majority, because really, what kind of weird assholes would know this game?) Akiba’s Trip is a half visual novel/half open world beat-em-up game for the PS3 where you wander around Akihabara and get into fights with man made vampires called Synthisters. How do you win these fights? WELL I’M GLAD YOU ASKED! You beat them up until you’ve damaged them enough that you can forcibly remove all their clothing and then have them explode as the sun hits their bare flesh! Nothing weird or creepy here at all, no sir. I should probably also mention that you are also a Synthister, as your character is a giant Otaku loser caricature and took an ominous sounding job posting to get chemicals tested on him, simply because it would pay him in rare figurines. I WISH I WAS MAKING ANY OF THIS UP! As of right now the game has just consisted of “Watch this super long conversation, go to a specified location, beat up the people there and repeat,” but the game did just introduce a side quest element, so hopefully that means it’ll open up some. As of right now, I’ll just enjoy the weirdness of it all, even if the gameplay is lacking. For example, the latest story mission has us being followed by a group of well dressed men in suits. It was uncertain if they were actually Synthisters or not but, fuck it! Let’s tear their clothes off and see what happens to them! That was seriously the logic used by the game, I wish I was making this up. I didn’t actually play too much of this because in true GADD fashion, I started way too late to be able to make any kind of real progress.
Hey whatever man, Sunday is football day. Sunday isn’t video game day.
Akiba’s Trip: Undead and Undressed
I decided to get back to the weirdness at a generally appropriate time today, so hopefully I’ll be able to stomach the game long enough to make some real progress. On one hand, I really love just how fucking insane this game is, but on the other hand it’s incredibly long winded to the point where you’re just sitting there “Uh huh. uh huh. uh huh. Got it. I know what I have to do. Shut up now. SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP!” and it just beats you into such an apathetic state that you just can’t keep going. There’s one game mechanic in this that I just don’t understand yet, and maybe it’s because I’m not deep enough into the game. You’re always traveling with one of three female companions (and the stats screen tells me there’s more choices to come) and there’s also some kind of dating sim aspect to this as well, where one character will tell you how the girls feel about you, but I have no idea how to affect that. Is it just how much time I spend questing with each of them? I also can’t change their equipment. It just pops up a status screen saying they like what they’re wearing now. Are these two things connected? Do I have to make them like me enough that they’ll allow me to change their clothes? God, somehow in this game, THAT is the creepiest thing of all. Also, looking at the trophies, it appears that it might be possible to hook up with your own sister. That might actually be creepier than the “get girls to like you so you can change their clothes!” mechanic This time I didn’t get frustrated by the long-winded nature of everybody involved, this time it was the actual fighting to frustrate me! But to be fair, it’s my own dumbass fault for letting the game manipulate me at the start. When you begin a new game your difficulty choices are Easy, Casual and Gamer, and of course, like a dumbass, I was all “Well I’m a fucking GAMER! Of course I’m going to select that difficulty!” and then you wind up getting pounded in 6 on 2 battles while hilariously under-equipped and just constantly dying over and over again. I eventually made it through this REGULAR ASS ENCOUNTER after about half a dozen attempts and immediately started shopping to try and prevent that from happening again. My sister is now telling me about how she sometimes gets “strange fantasies.” God…there’s no way, right? There’s no way, RIGHT? PLEASE SOMEONE TELL ME I’M WRONG! (Don’t tell me if I’m wrong) I….I can’t play this any more. I need to think about the best ways to make myself unappealing to my sister.
Akiba’s Trip: Undead and Undressed
…..Why the hell do I keep coming back to bad games so much more than good ones? *sigh* I’m just so disappointed in myself. This game is starting to make no sense (yes, STARTING! I STAND BY THAT) with the side missions now taking on regular people. Like a crowd of people rioting in front of a tech store, or a Twitter, excuse me, Pitter celebrity needing backup, or a freakin Akihabara version of Romeo & Juliet. Why am I ripping off the clothes of regular people, and why would they know to rip mine off? Everything is falling apart! I could probably make this a lot easier on myself by just doing the main story quests and not getting frustrated with trying to do all the side missions, but my brain just won’t allow that to happen. I have to do ALL side stuff before I can resume the story! But I honestly am getting to the point where I am getting sick of this game. I want to see where the crazy goes, but holy shit the game is just NOT fun to play. Camera is bad, targeting is awful, and the combat just prioritizes animation SO much that you’re constantly leaving yourself open to get screwed because you have to wait for your attack/recovery animations to completely finish before it will start doing anything else. No matter how much I wind up playing this, I honestly can’t recommend it to anyone. It just flat out isn’t good enough to deserve the controversy it got a few months ago.
The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth
Binding of Isaac is a randomly generated action dungeon crawler that could VERY loosely be described as Rogue-Lite, where you play as a little boy named Isaac whose mother believes that God spoke to her and required you to be sacrificed in order to prove her faith. You then run into the basement to escape your mom and…somehow your basement is actually a video game dungeon? I dunno. I LOVED Binding of Isaac when it came out for the PC in 2011. It was probably my favorite game of the year and I put a ridiculous number of hours into it. Most of my time playing it was while I was at work, and therefore in Steam’s offline mode, so it can’t give me a definite hour number, but I’d guess at least 60-70 hours, if not more. The Wrath of the Lamb expansion pack that came out later was good, but not necessarily good enough to get me to keep playing as I was already on the downward tick when it came out. Longtime GADD readers know that I absolutely detest double dip re-releases, but since this is a PS+ free game, I picked it up. I’m not really sure about the new art-style used in this release, and most people that are fans of the original BOI are upset that the original Danny Baranowsky score is no longer included. I’m not necessarily in that group since most of my time playing BOI had the sound muted since, again, I played it at work the majority of the time. This will feel like a whole new game to me due to all the new content in this release, and because I was the only person I knew who actually used the keyboard controls, instead of a controller. Now after doing one run-through in this game, my initial impression is that I don’t like this as much as the original Binding of Isaac. As I said previously, I feel the new art style is inferior to the original, but that could grow on me with time. The biggest sin, however, is just how much EASIER this game feels. I fucking beat Mom on my FIRST session. FIRST. That took me so damned long in the original Binding of Isaac. This could be attributed to many things; me playing the game a lot previously on the PC, getting ridiculously good drops (seriously it felt like a damn Cain run with how much stuff I was getting), using a controller instead of the keyboard, etc. But the biggest thing I don’t like about this game? It gives the player FAR too much information about what’s going on. Unfortunately this is probably a necessary thing to do, since there are so many people out there that won’t play Binding of Isaac without a damned wiki open to explain everything to them. What happened to discovering this shit for yourself people? That’s half the fun! Hell there are STILL parts of Binding of Isaac that I don’t know what they do, mostly the trinkets that were introduced in the Wrath of the Lamb DLC, but you know what? I’m fine with that. Despite all my complaints this still feels like a fine version of this game, after all it does add a whole bunch of new enemies and new items, but it’s just not the best one available. I’m sure I’ll still be playing this a lot in the upcoming weeks and you’ll soon be sick of hearing me talk about it.
Just felt like shooting some shit, so I did a few games of Crucible, where I was shockingly competent. No 0.34 K/D for me today, no sir! I played enough to turn in a few crucible bounties and got my first ever exotic bounty in return! I ran off to Mars to try and complete it, but then I started getting all kinds of Destiny server errors, so I gave up and decided to return to it tomorrow.
Just played enough to explore Mars and get what was required to finish the Exotic bounty, only to get a second part of the bounty which requires me to buy something from Xur, the strange coin vendor who only shows up on the weekend. Great, I didn’t realize a freakin bounty would be a time grind. Really hoping the exotic I get at the end is worth it.
The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth
I was ready to take back my statement from yesterday about this new version being too easy after I got rocked pretty hard in my second run-through, dying in just the caves. But then I went back in and WRECKED shit. Shit should not be getting wrecked this easily this early in Binding of Isaac. The drop rate, and more specifically, the drop rate of GOOD items, is just too high. I accidentally picked up a dead cat (gives you 9 lives, but you only get 1 heart for each life, so it’s normally an awful item to get) and still had absolutely no problem beating Mom’s Heart, the boss that gets unlocked after you beat Mom for the first time. There is a hard mode difficulty, which I’ll probably be using from now on, as I think it’ll probably give me the challenge I’m looking for from BOI. I feel like I should add some positives in here as well, so it doesn’t sound like I’m shitting all over the game, because I DO still like it. I enjoy the new Mom’s Heart fight, which changes it into what looks like a bullet hell shooter, and I feel like that new form of Mom’s Heart would provide a challenge if I didn’t go into the fight jacked up to the gills. I also enjoy that the game decided to double down on it’s juvenile humor. Giant shit bosses? Tiny shit enemies? Rainbow shits that heal you when you destroy them? LOVE IT! Also having Mom randomly attack you in non-boss fight rooms was a good surprise the first time I saw it. Again, I do like this game because at it’s core, it’s still The Binding of Isaac, and that’s still a great thing.
I kind of feel like a fraud this week. At the beginning of this article I promised you guys a bunch of really dumb bad games, but all I delivered was Akiba’s Trip. I just wasn’t expecting to put as much time into that game as I did, but the complete creepiness of it just hooked me for a short while. I feel like I’ve gotten free from it’s grip though, as the “bad gameplay to crazy fucked up shit” ratio is starting to get too strong on the wrong side. I’ll shoulder part of the blame for being dumb enough to be suckered in to the hard difficulty, but it’s still about 75/25 the game’s fault over mine. Next week I promise you’ll get some more dumb games, and I’m assuming I’ll finish, or at least continue, the Destiny exotic bounty. I have one game in particular that I received for my birthday that I’m planning on starting next week, but I want to keep it a surprise as to what it is. I’ll just say it’s one of the absolute worst games on the 360, alongside such luminaries as Sonic the Hedgehog, Two Worlds and Jumper: Griffin’s Story.
QUESTION OF THE WEEK:
Akiba’s Trip may be the weirdest game I have ever played, at least conceptually. Stripping clothes off of enemies, some of them explode afterwards, possibly hooking up with your sister later, and more. What is the weirdest and most messed up game you’ve ever played? Try to keep it to retail and/or legitimate downloadable games. I’m sure there are tons of dumb garbage Xbox Live Indie games that are way worse, but everyone knows that’s just a flaming wasteland anyway.