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    Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride (DS)    by   jp       (Sep 13th, 2019 at 10:27:55)

    Finished!

    The end was looking a bit dire - like I'd need to grind a lot in order to take down the final baddy. Fortunately(?) I was able to "cheese it" a little - I realized that I had an item that healed everybody and that if I spam used it, I'd be able to save all the magic points I really needed for the protection spells...and so, YAY!

    Looking at my shelf, it seems like I've played the Zenithia trilogy (IV, V, and VI) which are apparently the better ones. That's good. As I've mentioned before, these are some of the more enjoyable JRPGs I've played. Weirdly, I've completely lost track of when they released originally. In my mind they're all SNES era games (they're not) and this last one definitely had 3D graphics and such...

    One of the things I've enjoyed the most is how the game plays against convention rarely. But it does so in moments that really help heighten the novelty/experience. So, there are a few cut-scene moments that go "3D"...one notable one is a giant monster that awakens and walks towards Monstroferrato - you kill it to get a key. It was a cool moment that really played well into the "this monster is huge".

    Anyways, now on to other games!

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    Detroit: Become Human (PC)    by   Chuanqi Liu       (Sep 12th, 2019 at 01:17:41)

    I like the way of Detroit combing game system and narrative. The game uses the symbiosis to simulate all sorts of situations, often with quite pleasing results. What stood out for me was an interrogation scene with a stressed-out android, and a scene where I had to make sure a police officer didnít become too suspicious of my character. The success of those scenes came from mixing simple, gamey systems together with narrative in a holistic manner. In some scenarios, by showing some numbers going up and clear objective pointers, the game manages to add a more concrete feedback loop. The system gives the game more opportunities for narrative-system symbiosis.

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    Detroit: Become Human (PC)    by   Chuanqi Liu       (Sep 11th, 2019 at 00:25:45)

    I think the game might be more thematically interesting if protagonists didnít look so human. Most players can be easily sympathized with protagonists because of their humanoid looks and actions. It would be more fun if the player started the game thinking the robots did not deserve any rights, and the thinking would evolve throughout the game.
    For example, it doesnít make sense for a player to want for Connor to stay an obedient robot in the game. The story pretty clearly pushes the player to want Connor to become a deviant. If the Connor had looked a bit more spooky, or had weirder ways of thinking like a machine, it would have made the choice less obvious and forced me to think more about my alternatives. A version of Detroit with protagonists that are clearly not human would be also interesting to play.

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    Detroit: Become Human (PC)    by   Chuanqi Liu       (Sep 9th, 2019 at 22:08:26)

    The ethical controversy story of Detroit: Become Human intrigues me to think about the boundary between humankind and robots. How do we judge and distinguish robots from human? Is it wisdom, or life, or even emotion?
    One thing I found particularly interesting is a choice offered to the player about the android appears on the title screen, Chloe. Chloe is present on the gameís title screen to discuss the playerís choices, make comment on their progress, and generally interact with the player. After a successful android revolution, Chloe poses a question to the player; will the player allow her to leave to join the revolution or deny her request and make her remain as an in-game hostess. I think this request raises an implicit question of gender issues in the game, whether certain roles would only be fulfilled by certain genders. Would players respond differently to this request if it were made by a male android?

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    A Way Out (PS4)    by   jp       (Sep 9th, 2019 at 19:14:34)

    Played some more yesterday - we've escaped prison, wandered in the woods for a bit, and now repaired an elderly couple's old pickup truck and are escaping in it.

    At this point I'm really curious to know how long the game is - my wife isn't too comfortable with the controls (especially the camera control)...so we'll see how much patience she has.

    I'm really enjoying it so far...

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    Random

    Pro Evolution Soccer 6 (PC)    by   aceyo

    Pro Evolution Soccer 6 is a fairly realistic simulation to what a soccer game actually is. Although the commentary, graphics, and audio in general are rather poor, it does not infringe on some of the great previous gameplay experiences I've had with this game.
    most recent entry:   Friday 12 January, 2007
    Game 2: Semi-Final cup match vs. Liverpool

    The atmosphere of the cup match is much more exciting than that of a regular season match. The stadium is now full of fans, and you also get bird eye view shots of your stadium at night which look rather nice. The entrance scenario is also much longer and detailed. TV crews are on the pitch adding to the authenticity, and sometimes you can even see the players chanting their national anthems. However, since it is a special match, the AI play much harder than that of a normal season match.

    1': The AI is already showing its coded anxiousness to win the match by chasing my players with the ball at full speed, something you don't see too often in a normal season match. Furthermore, the AI is positioning itself in ways that intercept your passes at a greater success rate than that of a normal game. This not only leads to the difficulty of the game, but it also adds a new frustration factor, which sometimes can get you yelling at the monitor in my case. So not only do I have to pass more because I am being chased around by mad AI soccer players, they get intercepted a lot more.

    17': The AI's star player began a nice run through my midfield and approached my last defender. As the crowd began booing and hissing, I felt I shouldn't let my fans down, and attempted a last ditch tackling effort to steal the ball with my last defender. I mustered up my bravery and approached his player with caution, waiting for the perfect moment to hit the tackle button. When I saw small my window of opportunity open up, thanks to my great reaction speed from years of gaming I made an excellent sliding tackle to steal the ball and felt totally relieved and awesome.

    22': The AI's star player was once again on a mad run through my defense, even literally shoving some of them out of the way. You only experience this type of AI behavior in important matches, but it is really poor that you have try and defend against this type of advantage the computer has when you cannot do it yourself. I suppose its easier to design the game to be more difficult and give the AI certain advantages rather than giving them better attacking play. Anyway, I ended up being lucky as my goal keeper got in the way of his shot and the ball went wide.

    24': After the goal kick and a few passes, I saw my first opening in the AI's defense and sent a pass up the field. In frustration from previous events in the game, I started unnecessarily smashing the sprint button which lead to an easy tackle for the AI to steal the ball back.

    40': The AI's star player received a lofted through ball, and once again began plowing through my defense. In frustration and in fear of being scored on, I maliciously tackled him from behind and received a yellow card.

    2nd Half:

    42': Right at the beginning of the 2nd half, I had an excellent scoring opportunity as I had 2 of my forwards against only 1 of his defenders. It was my chance to try and taking an early lead in this game. The tension in my mind was building up as I had precious seconds to decide my plan of attack. Do I try to dodge him and take on the goalkeeper myself, or do I risk an intercepted pass to my other forward? In the end, my decision was to pass to my other forward, which was successful, and the anxious adrenaline buildup once again began flowing through my body. The defender was left isolated, and I was in a perfect 1 on 1 situation with the AI's goal keeper. I hit the shot button, and to my horror he shot it way wide.

    47': After that nasty reality that I was still even with this team, while dribbling around with one of my midfielders I noticed that I wasn't being covered by my opponents defense. At this moment, I realized this was an excellent opportunity for a long range effort on goal. I sprinted up, smashed the shoot button and it was parried into a corner kick by the AI's keeper. Here was a real chance for me to put it in the goal. I then powered up my corner kick and directed it towards my opponents goal. The pass was blocked out by a defender.

    51': I had yet another great attempt on goal moments later after a few passes between my fowards called in soccer a 1-2 sequence. My forward was speeding past the AI's defense, and only had the goal keeper between him and the net. It was another nail biting situation for me. Do I just attempt a direct shot on goal, or do I risk being tackled attempting the shot fake? I opted for option 2, and was disgusted when the AI's keeper didn't fall for it and stole the ball from my foot.

    78': After a few more malicious tackles on the AI's star player, to my surprise I actually injured him and put him on a stretcher. Although it felt kind of dirty playing this way, I justified my feelings by just thinking of some of the things the AI was doing with this player. Take that computer!

    90': At this point, a draw was really inevitable, and I was just passing the ball around keeping it away from the AI. I passed it to one of my midfielders, which again I noticed was uncovered. I figured, what the hell, even though I know this is going to miss why not go for it anyway. I sprinted up, smashed the shoot button, and actually watched the ball fly towards the AI's net. This was a few precious seconds to me, as it felt like I was watching the game in slow motion. As the ball got even closer and closer, I began realizing that it might score, and with background ambiance of the crowd cheering and the commentator screaming, I unconsciously began flailing my arms in the air in real life. In a mad flurry of excitement and adrenaline, I realized the ball was tucked into the top right corner and the commentator yelled "what a goal!"

    It was a moment in gaming history to remember, I had robbed the AI of a game that should have been a draw. I cannot describe being any more happy playing a video game than I was at that very moment.

    1-0 win for Black Hawks FC.


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