Xbox Game Pass & new MS game store app - PC thread

Yeah, I’m not going to say it’s unplayable, but it’s not fun to play. The audio skips a beat about every 2 seconds, give or take. It’s not very enjoyable.

And I booted back up Control, and I’m pretty sure stusser is right…it’s not even 1080. More like 720. It’s really pixelated until you get right up on an object and then it snaps into a higher resolution.

The upgrade to Series X servers hasn’t happened yet. All we’ve seen are ‘sometime in 2021’ but who knows how COVID has affected that.

I wonder how long the switch will take. TSMC is churning out as many 7nm wafers as they can but they’re in demand for AMD, Xbox, PS5, the works.

If anyone has played The Show 21 on xbox/ps and also is in the Xcloud demo, I’d be interested to know what you think of the performance. I suck at it, but it’s a split-second timing game that I’ve never played before, and I don’t know if button-press latency or graphic latency is making me worse at it than I would be otherwise.

The experience streaming to mobile sounds so sub par I’m not sure who the target audience is that asked for this except for the handful of people who need to remotely check in on their EVE online spreadsheets or something.

I’ve played a decent amount of xcloud on my tablet and overall have enjoyed the experience. Would I play competitive games like fighting games or rocket league, no, have I enjoyed playing games like Monster Sactuary and Outer Worlds, yes.

Performance varies heavily by title, in my experience. Batman and Outriders haven’t been very good, but Shadow of War has been great and Minecraft Dungeons works so well on mobile you’d think it was an Apple Arcade game.

I’ve played it a little here and there. I honestly can’t tell if I’m always late on the pitching meter because of latency, or because I’m aging and slow.

yeah, that’s where I am too.

See, I played Shadow of War in my Edge browser and it was OK (how do you make it full screen BTW?), but nowhere near as nice as playing the version I own through Steam on my PC. Just felt a bit laggy somehow, and definitely wasn’t being rendered at 1440p. On the other hand it didn’t make my PC sound like a vacuum cleaner either (I strongly suspect the DRM is responsible for that), so there’s that.

FYI, apparently you can buy a 1 year subscription to EA Play for $30 from Amazon and it will convert to 4 months of ultimate game pass which works out to $7.50/month. Not an awful deal for those who can’t do the $1/month trick anymore.

Use F11 to toggle full-screen.

Thank you, works great. Loading up the years!

While not as cheap as the previous method, I personally find this way much more appealing than entering in a thousand 7-day codes. Also feels less risky/icky.

I think the games max out at 1080p currently. Unlike GeForce Now and Luna, I’ve found that the Gamepass games never look as good as locally run counterparts. Until they switch from Xbox ones to Series X’s, that will probably continue to be true.
I tend to grade it on a curve because the library is so huge.

Dungeon of the Endless - This is on the “leaving soon” list. I tried it out last night, and it completely confounded me. It seems like some kind of turn-based game at first, but you can pause time so I guess it’s real time. And you can’t do much as far as I can tell, besides opening doors or building things with resources. You start with two heroes in an escape pod, but I couldn’t find a way to control the second hero until the first hero died from opening too many doors. Every time you open a door, your hero fights what’s inside the new room with no input from you. And I think the new room gets power from the old room, or something? It’s so weird.

The game doesn’t teach you anything, but I did notice that there’s a tutorial in the menu, so I guess that’s where they expect you to learn things. I hate that as a game design template. Make your game confusing, don’t teach the player as they go, instead tuck your advice in a separate tutorial.

Anyway, it’s leaving Game Pass, probably mid-May so good-riddance.

Dungeon of the Endless makes sense to me but I don’t actually remember how I learned to play it - I think though there’s a big issue with the actual button-pressing interface at this point, as it’s been ported to everything and every platform at this point, and honestly a Controller is probably the worst of the three possible ways of playing the game (K&M, touchscreen, gamepad).

I think it’s called “press your luck” in board gaming. It’s not especially hard to understand the game, but like a lot of the Endless games has a totally idiosyncratic logic to it, so yea, if you’re not willing to try the tutorial, it’s probably DOA for you.

Anybody can still do the full value conversion, but you do need to let GPU completely expire first and it’ll cost $14.99 to convert XBLG to GPU rather than $1.

I sort of liked the mysterious presentation and obfuscation at the start of Dungeon of the Endless, though I can see that being a big turnoff to people. It was fun to click around and explore the interface trying to figure things out like inventory and shops…and then OH MY GOD SOME CREATURE IS ATTACKING YOUR CRYSTAL PANIC.

I had a similar experience with Stellaris last month.

I used to kinda know how to play it before, but they changed a lot of stuff. ~8 hours (multiple games - I really like the space exploration stuff at the start) and I still had no idea what I was doing. Uninstalled out of frustration when the one rival I had started claiming my planets.

Unlike Dungeon of the Endless there didn’t seem to be a tutorial for anything new.

It’s a roguelike tower defense game. Does that help build a mental model?

That’s a bit reductive… “Everything you do in Civilzation is build stuff with resources, and move units around”. The decision making density is actually pretty high. The strategic choices in the game are:

  • Party composition
  • Where to explore
  • Which rooms to power up
  • Guns vs. butter resource allocation
  • Where to build your defenses
  • Which defenses to build
  • Which building upgrades to research
  • Which items to buy
  • How to distribute the items within your party
  • Which characters to spend resources leveling up
  • Pushing your luck with how few defenses to build vs. how many resources to carry over to the next level
  • Pushing your luck with how few heroes you assign to exploring / defense, vs. on operating buildings for more econ.
  • Pushing your luck on how long to stay on a level (for econ), before running the end of level gauntlet

On the tactical level, even though you don’t have direct control over the exact position / targeting of characters, you’d be doing the following during combat:

  • Triggering skills
  • Triggering healing / skill cooldown recharges
  • Moving characters between rooms to defend from attacks, or moving them to safety if they’re getting beat up
  • Using the movement mechanisms to kite enemies

Despite the limited amount of direct control, there are various tactics you’ll want to use against specific enemy types.

Well, that would make for a very hard game! With mouse & keyboard, it should be very obvious how to control multiple characters.

Oh, man. Now I really want to play some Dungeon of the Endless.