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Added by Nosoki on 12 Feb 2015 07:16
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My Video Game Diary

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2015

People who added this item 105 Average listal rating (68 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 0
Status: Completed twice
Playing Time: About 25 hours

The South Park RPG is one hell of a rarity - a good game based on a TV show. The game focuses on the characters the children are playing in the Brack Friday episodes of the series and this opens up a chance to make the game a fantasy RPG where the typical spells and potions etc. magical things are replaced with the typical piss-poo comedy of the show.

The game is quite shallow as an RPG, offering the player the basic stuff like leveling up and customizing your gear, but there is nothing more than that. Most of the battles can be won by simply doing the special attack of your character class over and over again and then drinking a potion (or eating Cheesy Poofs). This isn't a major nuisance, because the game is short and most of the fun of the game comes from the comedy side.

The jokes in the game are funny in general. There are cameos and references from throughout the series so the fans can masturbate to that. I wasn't really keen on the nazi zombies, because they are everywhere - even though they are in this game _IRONICALLY_. Other than that, the jokes are mostly in the vein of the earlier seasons of the show (piss and scat humour without any message), but it doesn't matter, because they work and are quite a big part of the experience.

I didn't like the item system very much, because you level up constantly and the game is very item-based. This means that at level 7 your sword can be devastating, but at level 8 it is just a piss poor waste of space in your inventory since the enemies scale up to your level and require better weapons to defeat. This makes it so that you'll have to change your equipment all the time and the customizations of your armor are annoying to switch, because you'll have to take them off manually each and every time. If the item-swapping was smoother, the game would be a lot better.

And then there is this ranting from a trophy whore... I didn't like how they made the collectibles inter-connected so that if you want to collect all the friends in the game, you'll also have to have all the Chinpokomon because you befriend the company CEO when you collect all of them. Some of the collectibles are missable and very hard to find so you are pretty much required to have a list of them with you at all times. For example, the only chance you have at being friends with Clyde is at the very beginning of the game before you do anything else. If you miss that, then its another playthrough. Also there are trophies that seal each other out like having your friend die and completing the game without your friends dying. Bah bah bah bah I'm an idiot for even complaining about stuff like this.

Nosoki's rating:
People who added this item 17 Average listal rating (12 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 0
NHL 14 - PlayStation 3
Status: Two seasons of offline Be a GM played
Playing Time: About two weeks

I played NHL 14 for two Be a GM seasons last year and now I continued the career mode by playing the third season with the New York Islanders. Your own goaltenders are again the biggest problem, making you shout at them for letting every single crap shot in, taking obscure positions to make a generic save and letting the rebound directly to the opposing team's player who is behind him.

Other than that, I realized that playing for 82 regular season games is just too much. 82 games might be a good amount in real life, but now it just becomes very boring, because the last third of the regular season is just dead-locked with the trade deadline over and you not being able to do any GM stuff. I mostly enjoyed doing trades, scheming against teams many years ahead and farming up the first round draft picks of the upcoming years when they don't have that much of a value yet. I also completely ruined the New York Rangers by doing a series of over-long and VERY over-paid contracts with some free agents and then dumping them to the Rangers, filling up their cap space, making them unable to give a raise to their star players whose contracts required renewal, et cetera. I also ended up getting their draft picks for the next six years this way, so good riddance to them. This also makes my own game a lot easier, since the Rangers are the most frequent team I have to face and now I have like unlimited draft picks and the best prospects that are available. Still, I don't want to play another 82 games for a long while.

I also cracked the potential system so that I knew when my players were over-developed and should be traded because their trade value would be at the very best it ever will. This allowed me to get a hefty return from trading Frans Nielsen and Michael Grabner away at the trade deadline, only to watch their overall stats drop from 85 to 80 and 88 to 82 and their trade value from about two fifths of the meter to an absolute zero at the beginning of the next season. Thankfully it is Philadelphia Flyers' problem now.

(I have nothing against Frans Nielsen or Michael Grabner in real life. Actually, Grabner's speed and constant breakaways are one of the reasons why I started rooting for the Isles back in the 2010-11 season.)

EDIT:

I played the fourth season of my Be a GM. This time my goaltender was awesome, posting a whopping .941 save percentage (something like .850 was the norm before this season) during regular season and winning every possible award. Maybe this is because my worst defenceman was 83 overall and the computer rarely even got good chances to score a goal. However, the shitsack lost his cool completely during the playoffs and posted stats barely over .800, forcing me to use my backup. We'll see how the next season plays out since I was forced to let half of my defence go due to salary cap restrictions. (Those bastards wanted a raise. Can you believe that?)
Nosoki's rating:
Status: Completed
Playing Time: Three days

The second installment to the Heroes Chronicles puts Tarnum in charge of the castle troops on his attempts to redeem himself in front of the ancestors who have denied him access to heaven. Being the jesters they are, the ancestors send Tarnum to rescue the guy who killed him as his soul has been captured from the paradise and taken to the depths of the underworld.

Tarnum begins to see the errors of his ways while cursing the guy he has to rescue. The second chapter is much better than the first one plot-wise, but the same problem is present in this one too. If you complete the maps fast enough, you'll miss out on the scripted story-telling parts that are told on certain days of the missions. Luckily, the second chapter doesn't have as many tutorial style missions as the first chapter did, so this problem will probably go away on the later chapters when the missions take longer to complete.

Other than that, the gameplay is Heroes III in all its greatness. It became quite annoying having to switch to 16-bit color mode every time when I wanted to play the game, because the windowed mode doesn't support 32-bit colors as it does in the HD Pack.

I also hated the computer-controlled allies in some of the missions, because sometimes they would start almost next to you and take all the mines and creature dwellings if you stray on the wrong track for even one turn. You can't take mines from your allies so if they take the wood and ore mines next to your castle, you'll pretty much have to start the mission again and rush to those mines. The allies never helped me against the enemies or anything like that. They mostly just blocked my way on the narrow underworld corridors and labyrinths. I would've preferred my allies to be my enemies in the missions. That way I could have had the chance to smash their skulls in for blocking my path and taking my mines.

Nosoki's rating:
Status: Completed
Playing Time: Two days

Heroes Chronicles is a series of eight standalone games made by using the Heroes III engine. Each of them has a campaign that focuses around the rise and fall of a barbarian king Tarnum. The games don't have anything else besides the campaigns, so the multiplayer and single scenario aspect of Heroes III is missing. This is why Chronicles is a game series for those who want to have a longer single player experience with the game.

The first one of the bunch tells us that the ancestors have denied Tarnum access to heaven. Apparently he has become a major douchebag in his quests and now he has to redeem himself. Then the story of Tarnum begins from the... beginning, telling us how his empire was built by blood. The first campaign puts you in charge of Tarnum as a barbarian king-to-be, slaying the other contestants to the throne and then starting his hate against spell-casting wizards.

The story attempts to tell itself through messages that enter the screen at certain days. It is a nice way to try story-telling in a strategy game inside the game itself, but it also becomes the biggest problem of - at least the first - chapter in Heroes Chronicles: If you complete the maps quickly enough, you'll miss out on the plot. When the first few maps are very easy tutorial missions on a small map, it doesn't take more than a couple of weeks to achieve victory, but the major plot points happen after a few months. The messages also don't have anything visual in them, so a love story is told without you ever seeing the woman - yet you are supposed to be madly in love with her. If you rush, you won't even know about the woman you are supposed to love with all your heart...

If you can stall and read all the plot twists, the story unravels and it is okay I guess. The rise of a king is as basic a fantasy plot can get, but there was one thing that I liked very much about the ever-growing mad rage of Tarnum. On his quest to annihilate the wizards, he is confronted many times by the weakest units in the game - peasants. The peasants are made so that they'll always fight, begging for mercy beforehand because the wizards will kill them if they don't fight. You can kill them with a single spell or a ranged unit, yet they become quite a nuisance. Then you'll start dooming them yourself - becoming the monster Tarnum is supposed to become. This adds very much to the immersion of you being Tarnum. A simple but very effective mechanic.

If you are hungry for more Heroes III, Chronicles isn't a very expensive way to get more campaigns. At just under 10 bucks at Gog.com it is quite cheap, because it contains all eight chapters of the story in one pack. The game mechanics are 100% Heroes III so there is nothing to complain about them. The only real flaw of Chronicles is that it doesn't work with the HD Pack which I've gotten used to thanks to playing Heroes III with it for hundreds of hours.

Nosoki's rating:
Status: Many games played
Playing Time: Tens of hours

I have nothing new to say about Heroes of Might and Magic III that I haven't said in 2013. The game is still awesome. It is fun against the computer, but way better when played with friends online. It's a shame that the game has such a little number of maps, but the map editor and the active community work wonders.
Nosoki's rating:
People who added this item 118 Average listal rating (61 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 0
Mass Effect 3 - PlayStation 3
Status: Completed the DLCs
Playing Time: About 40 hours (with the core game)

My thoughts about the core game can be found in my 2013 list. This time I played through the four DLCs, so I'll write about them. I liked two of them and didn't like the other two. All four of them cost almost 50 euros on the PS Store which is way too much for them. I bought them 50% off on a sale, and even then they are way too over-priced.

Omega
Omega was a great city in Mass Effect 2 so I was expecting the DLC that lets you return to it to be a good one. Sadly the DLC is about getting it back from the bad guys and this is done mostly by crawling in the un-innovative-looking warehouses, air ducts and massive machinery halls. It just looks bland. You don't get to use the city itself for much anything and that is what I would have wanted to get from this DLC: a place of commerce and side quests between all the killing.

Leviathan
Leviathan DLC starts out quite nicely with you searching for clues to pinpoint the location of something that has cost the lives of the people who have searched for it. The mystery part of the DLC is its strong point. However, the DLC gets boring when you realize what you are up against. This is because the writing seems to be lazy when you have many ancient races that have been unveiled with a mystery, and then they decide to add yet another one. The protheans in Mass Effect are a very nice part of the plot, and the reapers are of course the ancients of the ancients, and that works. but when you start adding something that is even more ancient than the ancients of the ancients it feels like the writers didn't even bother to come up with something new. This is why Leviathan is a letdown.

From Ashes
From Ashes only offers you one short mission. Luckily the mission itself is very much fun, and you get a new character, Javik for completing it. As a character, Javik is superb and the dialogue he adds to the game is interesting when you have completed the game before so many times that it doesn't seem to offer anything new anymore. From Ashes is a short DLC, but very much fun. It is very expensive for 20 minutes of play though.

Citadel
The best DLC for Mass Effect 3 is the one that adds the most to the game. The DLC has a so-so plot about a clone running around stealing your identity, but the real fun starts when the plot has been completed.

Citadel is a DLC that focuses on the R&R side of the crew. It adds many mini games and your own apartment for the recreational needs of your crew. The DLC is humor-oriented and the jokes are actually quite funny. The dialogue the DLC adds to the game makes your crew feel more like real persons instead of game characters and that is why Citadel is the DLC that actually does something to the core game instead of just adding more things to kill with your space marine. Some of the mini games are crap, some of them are ok. Even the combat simulator feels nice when it isn't mandatory like in Pinnacle Station for Mass Effect 1, where the whole DLC was inside the simulator. All in all, Citadel is easily the best DLC for Mass Effect 3.
Nosoki's rating:
People who added this item 40 Average listal rating (23 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 0
Status: Completed twice
Playing Time: A couple of hours

I also played this in 2014 when it was released, but I wanted to play this because I watched a friend's stream of this when he played it for the first time, and I had just pre-ordered MGS V: The Phantom Pain. So this was on my mind. The game was as good as I remembered it to be. I got a bit frustrated though when I was shooting for the S rank and forgot to turn off the reaction time. When the enemy saw me at the very end, it ruined my chance for the S rank. More replays wouldn't be a drag if you didn't need to use like 10 minutes of your 25 minutes of play putting hostages on a chopper.
Nosoki's rating:
People who added this item 2 Average listal rating (1 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 0
Forge - PC Games
Status: Occasional games played every now and then
Playing Time: Tens of hours

I wrote about this in my 2014 list and I have nothing much to add. It is still an awesome way to play Magic: The Gathering against an AI opponent and to playtest your decks. I prefer the real-life card game over this though and as we have started to draft with a bunch of friends semi-regularly, I won't have the need to play this as much since real people and the time spent together beats the AI opponent. However, this is a great way to kill off some spare time if I'm, for example, waiting for something to happen.
Nosoki's rating:
People who added this item 7 Average listal rating (4 ratings) 8.5 IMDB Rating 0
FIFA 15 - PlayStation 3
Status: Many games played
Playing Time: A lot (will be a lot more)

Of course I would go and buy the newest Fifa at some point. It is my vice. This year I was actually positively surprised by some new changes in the game.

Gameplay-wise they have made keeping the ball at your feet a bit harder and at least it feels different, so Fifa 15 is different enough from its predecessor to have a right to exist. I liked the new features in career mode a LOT, because EA seems to only focus on the Ultimate Team mode that I don't like as I have written before. The ability to do template team sheets is just awesome, because now you won't have to go to team management every single time a player picks up a red card or someone gets called up in their national team. The scouts now can define a player's overall, which is nice, because now the scouts work very well. I was also very surprised that now they have made completely new animations for like the championship celebrations. This is very welcome, because before this the animations have been the same for like five years.

One sad fact about the game is that the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A is gone because of licensing problems or something. This mainly affects the career mode, because many promising new players start in that league, and now you can't quite get 70ish overall youngsters at the same rate as in Fifa 14 and before. The re-installment of the Turkish Süper Lig is very nice though, because it was a shame that it was removed from the series after Fifa 11.

Otherwise Fifa 15 is, well... Fifa. Sometimes it is about the best thing in the world, sometimes it annoys the fuck out of you. The servers seem to be more stable and work a lot better in this one, and the problem where the game disconnected you from the servers after every single game seems to be gone.

This is the first time that I bought the Career mode pack that lets you use a custom made team from the Creation Centre in career mode. So now it is just a matter of time when my precious Half Goats F.C. with their sponsorship millions rise from Football League Two to the Premier League and win the championship.

Nosoki's rating:
People who added this item 9 Average listal rating (6 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 0
Status: Finally completed
Playing Time: 30-40 hours total

I wrote about this in my 2014 gaming diary, complaining about how the game was too laggy to be played to its finish. Now we finally managed to be able to complete it with one of the friends I started it with in 2014.

The best part of Dead Island is still Act I, where the world is at its most open and the zombie smashing is very casual. Act II is the most horrible, because it is just running around with fire under your ass because there are too many zombies everywhere. The scenery in the city is nice, but all the plot missions seem to be in the sewers which look boring, and they seem to be the only way to walk around the city because of the large amount of zombies.

When the game got to Act III, it got better, because the zombies aren't that numerous in the jungle. The laboratory with its idiot scientists is a nice place even though we weren't interested in the plot anymore so we just skipped the conversations, making insulting jokes about Mr. "Scientists" and their fancy pancy equipment. The parts where you kill human guerrillas in the jungle are also nice, because there we had a chance to do some co-op tactical attacking with the other one shooting from the cover and the other circling the enemies and whacking them with a machete from behind. For a while there, Dead Island felt like a completely different game - and a good one at that.

Act IV is a quick piperun, so it doesn't annoy or anything, but it isn't anything good either. From what we gathered from skipping most of the plot animations, the characters are douchebags and the plot is plain crap, but the zombie-whacking is still fun when playing co-op. I'm glad that we managed to complete the game.
Nosoki's rating:
People who added this item 23 Average listal rating (10 ratings) 8.5 IMDB Rating 0
Status: Random maps and a couple of campaign missions played
Playing Time: About 10-15 hours

Age of Empires II has pretty much always been my favorite RTS game. I'm not a fan of the genre, and I don't like the 3D graphics in them nowadays (even though Warcraft III is one of my favorites also, but that's because of the then-revolutionary way to advance plot in RTS games. Visually I don't like it). The fact that AoE II is very easy to learn and very accessible is a big plus, because RTS is a genre where you have to be able to do like 200 APM to be any good, and that is a bit too much for me. Of course if you want to be a good player, you'll have to be fast at micro-managing in this one too, but somehow the game is simple enough and therefore more accessible to casual players like myself.

The HD Edition thankfully doesn't alter the graphics or anything. AoE II is still the same game, but now it can be played in widescreen resolutions. The graphics are very nice, and I love how the game has a medieval setting without magic or dragons, because they seem to be in everything so its nice to do something without them. The addition of Steam support in online play is also a great feature. It was actually nice to play with a friend after a long while as AoE II is at its best with friends (as I seem to say about every game that can be played co-op).

The numerous civilizations are a great way to balance the game. Each one has their strong points and weaknesses, and only a couple of them are way better than the others, and those are for the hardcore rush gaming that I don't do myself. Even though the villagers and the units look like the same, the civilizations have their own upgrades and researches for them, so it does make a difference in the way the game is played, but it doesn't make picking a random civilization obsolete or anything. The game isn't ruined if you get, say the French, as your civilization. The game is same enough and different enough with every one of them.

When I played the campaign missions, I got fed up with them quite fast, because the first two campaigns are against the British, and you'll only see their longbowmen for like the first 10 hours you play. The plots in the campaigns are fascinating, but the way they advance only in-between missions is quite boring (this is why I loved Warcraft III where the plot advanced during the missions). I'll probably advance the campaigns very slowly and little by little to keep them interesting. I actually don't like how the first real campaign of Joan of Arc is annoying at times, because you only have a population limit of 75 and have to destroy the enemy castles with very limited researches and equipment.

Random scenarios with friends are the way to go, and playing them is RTS at its best. I personally don't like games where everyone rushes, so long games where you set up trade routes etc. are the ones that really appeal to me. When you win a worthy opponent after like four hours of siege tactics and large scale manslaughter, you'll feel like a conqueror.

Nosoki's rating:
People who added this item 30 Average listal rating (22 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 0
Bonanza Bros - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
Status: Completed
Playing Time: 30 minutes

This was also played as a part of the Sega Mega Drive Ultimate Collection I've written about in general in my 2014 gaming diary.

After the disappointing failure in Streets of Rage we wanted to play something else on the collection and of course I wanted to play the game that was the reason for getting the collection in the first place, Bonanza Bros.

I remember beating the game with my brother countless times on the Mega Drive back in the day, and I have only positive memories about the game. The premise is very simple: you go into targets and steal all the valuables from them before exiting via a zeppelin. Avoiding the guards is the way to go, and if they spot you, you can run or put them to sleep with your tranquillizer gun. You can also squish them (and your co-op partner) to a wall with a door. For some reason, doing this to your friend never gets old.

The not-so-serious graphical style of the game is very nice and the overall atmosphere of the game is quite silly in a good way. I think that the Mega Drive version looks better than the versions on other platforms, because of the vibrant colors it has. I also prefer the pixelated old school style in these kinds of games, so the never versions look a bit too smooth and refined to my eye, but that is a matter of personal taste.

The game is very easy and over very quickly. Going through ten levels on the normal difficulty will take about 30 minutes with a partner that has never played the game. In a silly fun game the easiness isn't a problem, and after the humiliating defeat in Streets of Rage it was nice to complete something. I'll probably ask every friend that comes over to play this at some point, because the game is so easy to learn and master. The humor and the very primitive stealth aspect of the game make it one of my favorite games ever released on the Mega Drive, perhaps even the best of them all.

Nosoki's rating:
People who added this item 150 Average listal rating (119 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 0
Streets of Rage - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
Status: The final boss wiped the floor with us
Playing Time: About an hour

This was played as a part of the Sega Mega Drive Ultimate Collection I've written about in general in my 2014 gaming diary.

So a friend of mine was visiting me and we played this one co-op. I've completed the game in the 1990s on a real Mega Drive and I remembered this being one of the easier titles on the system, but now the game wasn't as easy as I remembered.

Streets of Rage is one of those good side-scrolling beat 'em ups that have a co-op mode. Basically you just walk to the other side of the screen and whack everything until they are dead. There are 8 levels of whacking to do and every one (except for level 7) has a boss fight at the end.

The game is fun when played co-op, because now one player can aggro the enemies and the other whack them, so there'll be a bit more of a "tactical" side involved than in single player. The chance to use weapons that are found in levels is nice, and obviously makes it so that the player with the metal pipe whacks, and the other runs around aggroing the baddies. There isn't much more to it. The plot of the game is something like you are a cop and have to beat up the criminals. Superior story-telling and character depth aren't exactly the strong points of the game.

The only real flaws of the game come from the mechanics. Your characters are slow and they are very limited when it comes to dodging or blocking. This is why you'll pretty much have to die in the game often as the bosses hit you for half of your HP every time. The fact that you can't block the attacks doesn't make it easier. Some bosses are just plain unfair, like the fire-breathing fatties, who can just run quickly and from the top to the bottom of the screen, a thing you can't do fast enough to dodge the attack. When two of them attack one player, it is bye bye time for that player. This is why you can't lose lives or even be hit much on the first levels if you want to complete the game, because you just won't have enough spare lives to kill all the mini bosses on the final level. This is why we never had a chance on the final boss. At least this adds some re-play value to the game as it is very short.

Still, I liked Streets of Rage. I won't be sacrificing a lot of my time to it, but if my friend wants to play it again sometime, I'm up for it.



Nosoki's rating:

I have been writing a yearly gaming diary since 2013. As it seems, I don't really play that much, so I've decided to do what Nameless did with his gaming diaries and instead of making a new list every year, just write about the played games in one list for... FOREVER!

I'll write about the games, but if I play a game over and over again, I'm not sure if I can be bothered to write anything new about them every time or if I'll remember to update the playing hours for them after each session. If I play a game that I've written about earlier in another list, I'll just link the list if I don't have anything new to say about the game. I'll add new games when I feel like I've completed them or I'm just fed up with them and not going to play them. With on-going curses like Fifa I'll add them at some point and just keep on playing, because I'm an idiot.

The newest additions will always be at the top of this list.

My earlier gaming lists can be found here:
2013
2014

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