Game of the Month - October 2016

My god, I’m shocked I’ve never heard of this before. You’ll have to share 'em once you’re done.

Sorry Civilization 6, but my game of the month was Shadow Warrior 2.

Runner-up Dragon Quest Builders, with late mention going to Skyrim Special Edition.

Sorry Shadow Warrior 2, you almost made it. You were really fun but then I bought Farming Simulation 17 three days before the end of the month

Two months worth of gaming.

Infamous, Infamous 2, Infamous First Light - I bought Infamous at release and it didn’t click for me. The jumping felt odd, the main character was unlikable, his buddy was unlikable, and the combat was frustrating. This time I powered through all that stuff and it clicked. None of my gripes were invalid, but I acclimated. Infamous managed to be an engaging open-world game that didn’t overstay its welcome. Fun activities and missions (trains!), nice pacing on the unlocks once you get over the underpowered beginning and use the basically mandatory cover system. I always play as a goody 2-shoes, except for one time I acted what I thought was justifiably selfish, and the bad guy killed the girlfriend I had been working to get back on my side. That ticked me off, so I looked it up and he kills your girlfriend no matter what (so I consider it less of a spoiler as much as a warning not to care much about the story). Screw you, Sucker Punch.

Infamous 2 tossed some stuff that didn’t work well in the original, as well as some stuff that was arguably working ok. Less of a focus on platforming, same “clear the map” gameplay and good/bad decision making. The first half worked better than the second, the decision to make it a copy of a half-flooded New Orleans wasn’t particularly compelling, nor was the choice of bad guy. Reasonably fun NPC companions, and a somewhat rehabilitated buddy character. I never understood why he seemed to be an Elvis impersonator.

Infamous First Light is the stripped-down prequel to the PS4’s close-to-launch title. So pretty! Well designed and can be finished in a day. I guess I’m saving Second Son for when I’m not running the risk of burnout.

Mafia III - I liked it, and finished it within a week of release with no regrets for buying it. Great setting, voice acting, visual storytelling, music, atmosphere and characters. The criticisms of its grindiness are valid (and I can see how it would REALLY rub a reviewer who has to do it all in one or two sittings the wrong way), but finishing it was worth the time. You can choose how you deal with the ending, but playing Sympathy For The Devil over the ending made me feel like I had no real choice other than badass.

Titanfall 2 - Second only to Doom this year for an excellent single player FPS experience. So much imagination over about 6 or 7 hours of action and story.

Borderlands - Finished up some achievements, tried other classes. Got really tired of the intro missions, they didn’t make a good impression when I bought it at release and still don’t. Let there be a “I know what I’m doing” button please, especially when you intend for players to go through multiple times. The DLC in order of quality: Knoxx, Claptrap Revolution, Ned’s Swamp, Moxxi’s battle arena. The decline is steep.

Action Henk - A “perfect the run” game, with a creepy-looking action figure and his even creepier other action figure buddies. Simple controls, jump and slide, with a few levels that use a grapple. All about the timing, building momentum, and keeping it to access the best path. Difficulty really spikes after the first set of mission groups, but pretty fun up to that point.

Hydro Thunder Hurricane - A pretty good sequel to an excellent Dreamcast game (at least that’s what I played it on). Expert level boats are way too hard to control.

Bedlam The Game By Christopher Brookmyre - Finished this, did not leave me wanting more. It was a buggy mess at the end, to the point where after the final boss fight, I was supposed to climb a tower to the exit, except I kept falling through part of the ramp up. WTF, Chris?

Battlefield One - Only played a little, liked the tank campaign that I played, though. I can’t get it back from my son, so it’s probably pretty good.

Valley - I wanted to like this, but the slow intro and the inexplicable “modern-day looking back at WW2-era artifacts” setting made it hard to swallow. If you are going with this level of unreality, just put it on another planet. I found the fact that I was being asked to buy into a game world where humanity had the ability to resurrect dead animals at will in the 1940’s, but was otherwise basically the same world we occupy today, to be a leap too far.

Mirror’s Edge - I tried it, found I didn’t want to keep playing. A neat idea but the fail and repeat gameplay was ultimately annoying and frustrating.

Guns Gore and Cannoli - Finished this. No real changes from my initial opinion that it’s a decent 2D gun platformer. Ended in the expected elaborate boss fight.

Did you play that through Xbox One back compat? If so could you tell me what you thought? I never played Borderlands.

It worked great. Maybe even more smoothly than on the original 360 (I alternated a bit), but with no problems at all on the XB1.

So what was your game of the month? :P

I didn’t manage to find much time for PC games this month, but Dungeon Warfare and Dream Quest filled the gaps pretty well on my phone.

Puzzle & Dragons, as always, but I’ve also been enjoying Xenoblade Chronicles X.

Ladykiller in a Bind should be here, but I haven’t been in the right mood to sit down and pour hours into a visual novel.

Dungeon Warfare as well for me. Lovely distraction, I didn’t see the 20 hours I spent with it go by.
Grabbed Book of Demons after playing the demo, and beyond its obvious Diablo homage/parody shine, the game has been giving me Diablo-vibes like no other ARPG did for the past 20 years. It’s a wonderful, if repetitive, toy, with a lot of heart and consideration for the player. I am eagerly looking forward to the extra content on release.

And still, still… Hungry Cat Picross… Desperately addicated…

Titanfall 2 edges out Mafia 3 in fun per hour, Mafia 3 in game value for full price.

Yes, I cheated.

Cost effective gaming would like to nominate The Crew for being free and Enderal likewise.

That’s right Mafia 3 came out! No one mentioned it yet, and I totally forgot about it.

Ggbdjyy

Exact same as me … is Gordon_Cameron a drunk pseudonym I use ???

Maybe I’m Gordon_Camerons drunk pseudonym???

Damn I’m confused.

Farming Simulator '17. I’m not even kidding.

Oh god it all makes sense now

ARK: Survival Evolved has sucked me back in. Some of the guys over at OO started getting together on a new server with The Center map with the Primitive + DLC and I couldn’t resist starting over again. I have my new base and perimeter all built up with concrete and brick complete with a large water pen in a nice cove and all set to start filling up with dinos again.

The Golf Club: Well, I made the PGA Tour over at tgctours.com, but the new season hasn’t started off so well. I easily made the cut in the first event and was near the top 25, but fell apart on the weekend and finished dead last (but at least with a check). I proceeded to miss the cut the next two events by only a stroke or two and one of them was only a minor event with the top rated players off at the WGC Event. I seem to be getting worse!

Civ VI: Late comer this month and really enjoying it so far although I am only a bit past half way in my first game on Prince with the Aztecs, which they gave me as a random choice. Hoping to get a lot more time with it this month.

For me it was a dead heat between Doom and Star Wars: The Old Republic. What a pleasant surprise Doom was! From the new glory-kill mechanic to the openness of the maps, finding secrets on the map after you’ve cleared every last one of those demons, every gun feeling distinct and powerful in their own way (Gauss gun forever!), I even kind of enjoyed the little story bits and collectibles scattered through every level. I did get a little burned out by the end and may have dropped the difficulty down to the lowest level to power through the last few boss fights but overall really enjoyed this game.

I also got back into SWTOR for the first time since I gave up on it shortly after launch and found it to be much more forgiving of your time. As an MMO I think it’s probably terrible, but as a single player psuedo-RPG based in a Star Wars universe I love it can be really fun. Yes it’s almost laughably easy, at least for the first 50 or so levels that i’m currently going through, and yeah the story bits can be a bit hammy at times but if you give in to your inner Star Wars nerd its easy to just sit back and enjoy cutting mobs to pieces with a lightsaber.

The Elder Scrolls: Morrowind, The Elder Scrolls Online, and … The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim. :/

I did fire up Oblivion, but there are only so many free hours available.