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    Mass Effect: Andromeda (PS4)    by   jp       (May 13th, 2024 at 17:44:13)

    After an "ooh, that was close" moment where I almost bailed (there was a door that bugged out and didn't open, wasted a lot of time backtracking to figure what I missed, went online saw that it was supposed to open and quit the game, next day, when I loaded again I was thankfully at the door and it worked), I must say that I'm really having fun with this. Mostly I'm enjoying the fantasy the game provides: lead a community in creating a settlement in an undiscovered (to you) galaxy.

    So far I've created the first "foothold" on a planet (a science base instead of a military one) after "magically" (deus ex machina moment for sure) being able to interface with an ancient(?) alien technology that somehow near instantly controls the weather making everything work. There's apparently a whole network of these alien structures across different planets and I imagine I'll be investigating more of them!

    Doing this unlocked a new mechanic/system in the game where I can automate some resource generation because there are enough "viability points" (well explained in the game's narrative!) to bring out a group of people from cryo-hibernation to continue working on settling.

    I think I'm a little over 8 hours in... I have no idea how much longer I'll engage or id this will start to drag/grind a bit? We'll see..

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    Battlefield 4 (PS4)    by   jp       (May 13th, 2024 at 14:39:55)

    I decided to bail from the game - in frustration - I Was making "fine" progress in the campaign, but after losing a few times in a mission I decided to call it quits because - the checkpoint was too far (I had made slow but significant progress, then died, and had to go back to the beginning, and it was too many times at this point). But, more importantly, I just ran into too many technical issues that sort of "broke" the game experience for me. A few examples:

    a. AI partner is 2 meters away from an enemy, both are shooting at each other - super close, and no one hits. The partner AI just seemed obviously too ineffective (as well as the enemy AI).

    b. In the "escape from jail" mission - the part right after you turn off everything from a tower in the middle and then have to go back down to guards waiting for you - all the guards were somehow completely unaware of my presence, so I knifed them all, they died and then more respawned and ran in, and still did not see me. I eventually just moved on...

    c. I'm shooting at enemies, through the scope and clearly and obviously hitting them - but there's no effect. I wasn't "hitting the ground" nor was there anything in between myself and the target. And the target wasn't that far for the ballistic drop off or weapon range to be an issue. I have no idea what was going on to be honest but I had experienced earlier similar issues.

    d. They story/narrative started to rapidly decrease in its comprehensibility. I was captured in china, taken to a prison that was then in Singapore? Or that's where I arrived after escaping, but it was in the jungle, but the jail was at the top of a really snowy mountain? Maybe I'm just confused by the geography here? But there's also some super secret that involves a Chinese national I helped bust out, whose "wife" (not the wife?) was a double agent, she got us all jailed, but then she's "the good guys" again? But what's this all about anyways? Now, there's a difference between "the story's simple, but it's kind of stupid" which I'm usually fine with. But here I feel like it's in the "kind of stupid" camp - but too complicated to follow along with easily?


    All that being said...

    I though the weapon system was interesting - you can hit the "boxes" in the level and just equip whatever you want (that you've unlocked/found). I was partial to some of the Chinese-manufacture weapons (are they based on real weapons?). It was also fun to ride around in vehicles (once I learned how to exit them). I also thought it was pretty neat how the art direction on the cover (blue/orange color palette) is also part of the game - at least in some of the earlier missions!

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    Portal Reloaded (PC)    by   dkirschner       (May 13th, 2024 at 12:38:28)

    I played about an hour and it broke my brain. This is immediately harder than Portal Stories: Mel because of the time dimension. Reloaded adds a third portal. It is green and allows you to move between a "past" Aperture and a "future" Aperture. Various rules govern how time works. For example, you can move objects from the future to the past, which basically creates an extra object, but not vice versa. Manipulating an object in the past will change it in the future (but not vice versa). I struggled to understand how past and present objects affected one another, and didn't even make it to where you can shoot your own green portal; it was always placed for me. I watched some videos of later test chambers and there is no way in hell I would have figured them out. This was really like Mel-level difficulty plus a third portal and fourth dimension. Really neat, but nah, I'm not motivated to think about it that hard.

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    Cobalt Core (PC)    by   jp       (May 8th, 2024 at 14:25:11)

    I've since played a bunch more, unlocked more characters, etc. The story unlocks are a lot slower/grindy than I'd like and I've realized that some character combinations are pretty bad! I think I've reached the point where I've figured out a bunch of things, but am not quite ready to take my play to another level - as in, there are things it has not occurred to my to try out. This is sort of the moment where I might look at some guide online or see what the player community is saying - what does expert play look like in this space? can I pull off some of the more challenging strategies? I don't know...I'm sort of interested in exploring some more, but also looking at a (digital) stack of other unplayed games... hmm. choices!

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    Signs of the Sojourner (PC)    by   jp       (May 8th, 2024 at 14:21:18)

    Maybe it's the road trip aspect of this game, but I was really reminded of the game "Road 96" even though the gameplay and story are completely unrelated. Both games are unrelated. I don't really know why the connection popped into my head to be honest.

    Anyways, interesting game - especially the deckbuilding aspects of it. The game does away with most of the intricate and sophisticated mechanics you see while simplifying some things in a way that's pretty refreshing: your deck is always the same size and at the end of every encounter/conversation you have to remove a card from your deck and pick a new one from a small selection (was it 6 options or 3? I can't recall as I write this). The game's mechanics themselves are also simple and interesting - and there's cards that have different effects and such, but not too many.

    So, I really liked the pared down deckbuilding! But, the playing a little less so - I mean the playing the card game part - there are perhaps a few too many turns in which I couldn't really do anything and that's always a bummer. On the other hand, the experience aligns well with the game's theme and story! (communication, culture, how people change when exposed to others and their cultures, etc.)

    Also, having only played a "full game" once - I feel strangely satisfied, I got the story I got, had the experience I had, and feel no desire to go back and play it differently...which I think is a good thing for many narrative-based games (where replays essentially becomes more about optimizing/ gaming the game than having different stories). This is because in many, but obviously not all, games - playing a gain sort of ruins the experience because you get to see too much behind the curtain - e.g. realizing which things happen regardless of your choices, what the system is doing behind the scenes, etc.

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    GameLog hopes to be a site where gamers such as yourself keep track of the games that they are currently playing. A GameLog is basically a record of a game you started playing. If it's open, you still consider yourself to be playing the game. If it's closed, you finished playing the game. (it doesn't matter if you got bored, frustrated,etc.) You can also attach short comments to each of your games or even maintain a diary (with more detailed entries) for that game. Call it a weblog of game playing activity if you will.

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    1 : dkirschner's Gravity Rush 2 (PS4)
    2 : jp's Signs of the Sojourner (PC)
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    Random

    Shadow of the Colossus (PS2)    by   jonG80

    No comment, yet.
    most recent entry:   Friday 13 October, 2006
    Today I "interacted" with a few random pedestrians, using a chainsaw. It seems funny because they don't really scream or anything, and everyone around them will run away, as if they didn't even know the people they were just walking with. I keep trying to pick up some members of my gang to go on a crime spree of some kind but they aren't even responding to me. I must be doing something wrong. I'm making a lot of progress with my virtual girlfriend. But it doesn't really seem to matter because all she really wants to do is go eat. Oh wait, this time we're going clubbing at a local disco. This should be interesting. I can make my character dance by pressing buttons in a certain sequence, I did pretty good, and it seemed to make "denise" pretty happy. I was summoned to one of my territories when my 'hood' was under attack. I came in with guns blazing and quickly put the potential take-over to rest.

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