This week was interesting, I had a chance to abuse Steam’s free weekend and grind through two endless games. That’s the joke they’re named endless and they’re indeed endless to a degree. Every game I played felt like a grind of some sort with Dark Souls, a rouge-like Dungeon of the Endless, River City Ransom and even RefleX.
TIME RAMESSIDE (A NEW RECKONING)
I dusted off this obligation to play with a 20 GB install after a 5 GB download. Its still awful and laughably unplayable, but the developers always have new video showing off how great it looks. The problem is that they just don’t play their own game. It seems like only a few select bug reporters play it. I’m also astounded how the bug reporters can catch enemies spawning through solid walls, but miss a gun being held below your character’s hand. Oh and then there’s the fact that your arms can clip through the enemies so when you shoot, the barrel of your gun is beyond the model. So you have to wait until you die. Then rewatch the same awful, slow and cumbersome cut scene again and again.
Every time I play Time Ramesside, its like a completely different game. I mean that both in good positive ways and awful negative ways. I’ve put 12 hours into the game and that’s minus the extensive bug reports. Someone new has taken over the project, but while it fixes old problems, it only creates new ones. They promised a full game on April 15th and I understand if they fall behind, but now they’re promising that its just episode 1 for a $25 game. I’ve played for 12 hours and sat through 9 months of new first levels and yet I’ve never finished any of them for one reason or another. I’d write a review about it, and I already do have a review, but its just so unplayable that I hate to give it a bad review just because I can’t make it past the first slew of enemies without them hording around me and consuming my gun.
The name changed from A New Reckoning and at least that could be spelled. Try spelling Time Ramesside. How many vowels do you need? I’ve looked it up just now, “of or relating to the kings of ancient Egypt named Ramses; especially : of or relating to the kings of the XXth dynasty founded by Ramses III about .” While I understand that even Daikatana started you out in the future and you teleported to the past, this game doesn’t feel like there’s any sort of teleportation mechanic. Read the original full review, that is now well out of date
RUSH HOUR MAYHEM
Well this was an interesting one for right and wrong reasons. Its from a developer that I asked to review it. I was excited and then playing it, the game is so bad its good, but so one dimensional that its awful. BUT I say that on the first day. I handed in all of my nights and overnight like Altus holding up Earth while we’re all asleep, the game is infinitely better, more playable and fun. All without giving in to my notes. The feedback was taken, spun around to put an even better twist on things.
Since this isn’t my official review, I found an exploit that leaves the sidewalks safe. I suggested a fire hydrant, the developer came back with mines and parked tanks. Boom. Much better and video game than my idea. Again I really enjoy this arcade style game now. I’m happy that it happened overnight or I’d be talking about how awful the game is and maybe not even give it a review.
RIVER CITY RANSOM
Nostalgia colored glasses made this a really great game. Then I played it for the first time in twenty-five years and its just a slow, monotonous game. I’d be done with Double Dragon and thing wow what a fun challenging game after 2 hours. Then I’d play River City Ransom for 4 hours, not beat it and keep looking at my clock. Its just not fun and the developers knew that its not fun. Oh but there are enough reviews in the Internet talking about how fun it is to play with a friend. Yeah that’s the problem with friends, they make everything fun. I felt that I had to revisit River City Ransom after covering so many Double Dragon games and even WWF WrestleMania.
TREEKER: THE LOST GLASSES
Treeker is a gorgeous game. Wow that alone will sell thousands of copies. That’s really all people want is a gorgeous game to look at. Then there’s what the game brings to the table and that’s hardcore first person platforming. Oh there’s nothing wrong with that, but on the surface it looks like a beautiful first person puzzler. I still made it through most of the game, but after 45 minutes on one section, its time to cut my losses and move on. I fully expect it to be on Steam and be a hit game. Everyone will gush how great it is until the first hour ends. Read the full review
WRESTLING MPIRE REMIX
I can’t exactly remember what made me dust this game off. Oh yeah Desura. I’ve run out of new games I actually want to review on Desura, that and it seems like one developer out of six actually gets back to me. I think my messages are being filtered as spam. That’s okay though, they are unsolicited. The interesting thing is none of the Desura developers monitor their accounts to see their messages except for a select few.
So after replaying Wrestling MPire Remix I don’t like it as much as I did. More than ten years ago I bought a physical copy to the original 3D game and I played it to no end. It was my only game for months on end. I even spoke with MDickie via email quite a lot. The issue is that I just hadn’t played better games back then. I don’t even mean better wrestling games. I mean better games at all. This just feels like a frustrating mess.
The controls are fine, but its the execution that becomes difficult. Wrestlers can’t even do the simplest thing without a chance of failure. Sometimes bouncing off the ropes can result in you falling over. So what’s supposed to be a wrestling game turns into a brawler. You’re also handicapped, because training cuts into your health for your match. Its a career game that turns into a grind and when its tough to play and get anything done, its time to abandon ship.
Uh boy this is a toss up. Was it fun or wasn’t it? It was awful for the first four hours. Nothing was done. It was me clicking on next turn over and over again. My troops didn’t move, they just sat wow it was dull and boring. Then as I was attacked, I fought back and started taking over territory. I played 14 hours. That must mean the game is fantastic and great right? No it just takes that dang long to watch the turn based battles play out. Oh that’s right. Watch them. You don’t play these turn based battles. You’re just stuck playing a gorgeous medieval fantasy version of Civilization. I was shocked that my review went up so far on Steam, but like every negative review it’ll stay to about 58 – 67% Just enough to keep it fluctuating between on the store page and off of it. A shame too, because its probably one of the only reviews that brings up legitimate problems. At some point during the 14 hours the game just became dull, because I knew I was going to win. There’s no endgame or giant boss battle. Its the same thing, just different stages of a civilization’s land and army. Read the full review
After playing Papilio, Gradius, Life Force and Jamestown, I had to replay RefleX. See there’s logic behind all of these choices. I always remember RefleX being a lot of fun and I was right. Maybe I just like SHMUPs for some reason. I never remember liking them in general. I really only played Gradius. Anyway, RefleX is still a lot of fun to play, I got deeper into the game, but that’s only because it entices you to play more by giving you an extra life for your next play through. In a way that makes the game a grind like the rest here on my list, but if I was good enough to beat it in three lives I wouldn’t need to grind now would I? Read the full 2015 review
DARK SOULS: PREPARE TO DIE EDITION
Speaking of grind, with all of the Bloodbourne talk, I decided that its time to play games I actually own. So I gave Dark Souls a try after going through Demon’s Souls a few year’s ago. Well shock and awe, they’re the same game. In fact I went into it thinking it was Demon’s Souls. I had purchased the wrong thing at a Steam sale and well here we are. After about five hours in, the game has just become boring and monotonous. I’m seeing the big picture time wise. I’m now seven hours in, literally stuck on the same path of green for two hours, forced to grind and make four trips back and forth in order to get my next level up to hopefully take out the boss who is holding around three level ups worth of souls under its moth wings.
That’s the reality of the game. Its not hard, its just monotonous. Each slog through this path takes maybe ten minutes there and back. Killing all seven plant monsters and one giant knight. The game’s just too dull to force myself to endure forty more minutes at the thought of defeating a boss that I’ve failed to ten eight times already. Are there no other games that people can play for fun? Why do they chose this one with deliberately dull gameplay that requires traversing the same area dozens of times? At least with traditional overhead role-playing games, those are like games of chess. Dark and Demon’s Souls are just hiding behind your shield waiting for an enemy to blatantly telegraph. To read about my first four hours that were much happier, click here.
DUNGEON OF THE ENDLESS
My grind of the week. Oh I mean game. Yes that’s exactly it. This is a gem in my eyes and I hate rogue-like dungeon crawlers, but this one is a tower defense game mixed with a dungeon crawler. It was infinitely more fun playing online with other humans and Russians. The two aren’t the same thing. Anyway, what made it fun was only having to control one character instead of four. After a team would fall apart and die, I wanted more. I couldn’t get enough of the game in the eight or so hours that I played. Its just so simple and engaging without being boring or click heavy like traditional dungeon cralwers. Read the full review