> seem to have this obsession with upgrade points and pointlessly customizable stuff
Dopamine. There are a few studies on how "checking things off a list" and similar behavior can release dopamine and therefore get you hooked into the action. Same for customization. That's why so many modern games put that crap in: it works for a large percentage of their target audience. And if their target audience is bigger, the more generic and bland those systems are.
Sad, but there's a reason to it.
Upon revisiting Doom 2016, it is indeed pretty much the same. Though I remembered it felt more natural there in comparison. Maybe because you get weapon upgrade points by discovering secrets in general, and the collecibles and suit points are less obviously gamey inside the levels.
The good news is: It's a Gears turn-based strategy game. The bad news is: It's a Gears turn-based strategy game.
What you get is an almost adequate re-skinned XCom, in which good graphics, smooth functionality and useful skills barely compensate for repetitive missions, constant map re-usage and occasional but insomnia-curing boss combats.
All of this is wrapped up in the classic Gears aesthetic which was bad enough to make GOW an instant uninstall & refund failure and has hardly improved with this - pre-teen fantasy wooden cliche meatheads fighting slightly differently textured wooden cliche meatheads. Whereas, say, MYZ had instantly endearing characters, WH40K mechanicus had fresh and interesting races, and BTech had goddamn battlemechs, the characters in this were half-heartedly loathable straight away and this improved only marginally with the distant perspective and acquiring helmets to cover their moronic visages. You can't polish a turd and serving that turd in a different format is scarcely better.
If you've played all the vastly superior TBS games in the last few years and want yet more generic TBS to pass the time, this may well serve that purpose (as it did for me, with a lot of very casual hours in). If you've played all the Gears games and want yet more, this will serve as a timely remind to book your lobotomy appointment.
constant map re-usage
Nice one Daz.
Control Proper Release
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Savour that sweet sweet coming from EGS beta-testing to proper Steam release DISCOUNT. Gotta love it. The devs get EVEN LESS from your purchase cos they fucked around putting it on EGS exclusive.
Favourite PArt Of Game So Far
When a mole falls in spikes.
In other news, Control confirmed as GOTY by both Vondur and I.
The moles are absolute bastards.
Do not pity them.
Ziggurat 2 goes into Early Access in a few days. You should be able to watch someone streaming it on Twitch soon after to see how it plays (that's my plan). And you can check the recent tweets from @Milkstone for some teasers.
As a reminder, Ziggurat came out in 2014 or so and is a pretty neat indie rogue-style FPS game with magic. It made up for lackluster procedurally generated levels with plenty of good ideas and interesting weapons & powers, so I'm interested to see what they're doing for the sequel. Hopefully better level designs are in the works.
That's The Torchlight Of FPSes Then
Very cutesy and cartoony and kid-friendly, but also looks pretty harmonious and cool settings / backdrops.
I cast Graphicus Genericus!
Some parts of it make me think about if setpieces were abused to make the levels or if it was done with something like Doom4's snapmap.
Kinn Remind Me Again...
Which recent FPSes have a cartoon fantasy graphical style to them??
SC0RN 14minutes Ultra-slow Console Gameplay At FOV55
thanks to Vondur for posting it on discord.
Watch the unsettling and horrifying results in this exclusive 13-minute gameplay video.
I am unsettled and horrified by how boring that game looks.
This is awesome. Loving the slow pacing and high weirdness factor. Seems like a game that would take forever to make.
On the plus side it is definitely looking more like a game, and the graphics are 11/10.
On the other hand, the FOV55 and perma-walk mode look alarmingly sluggish, and it still seems to be just saying BUY THIS GAME BECUZ GIGER (or that other artist dude I forget) and WEIRDO BIOMECHANICAL PORN HERP DERP.
Would like to see if it can make it more intringuing than the initial thematic impact, and carry that over a whole game and maintain interest.
to see what it is about, as till now seemed more like an interactive movie and now the gameplay feels like it is along the lines of the one in the first three games in the Alone in the Dark series.
The implementation of ideas for gameplay as nice, even if the ideas themselves are not novel. What i miss is that the theme of the level now feels more conventional, and a faster release as at this pace reminds me of those game that took too long and ended up being disappointing.
Yeah, this reinforces my reaction to the previous videos.
+ Great looking environments. (though I kind of wish the lighting was more dramatic and spookier)
- Looks too slow to be a shooter, not scary enough to be horror, and puzzles not interesting enough to be an adventure game.
On The Subject Of Games Trying To Rely Entirely In A Particular Theme.
Succubus prologue walkthrough. Guaranteed work-safe, family-friendly, and suitable for good honest Christian viewing everywhere.
the first demo showed serious problems in level design: samey looking corridors that are hard to figure out which one you have already visited and which one you haven't explored yet. Also, I didn't manage to finish the demo because I had no idea what I had to do to progress. That was ~2 years ago and I hope it gets better. The visuals are stunning for sure.
In Other News.
The Outer Worlds is out on Steam, with that sweet sweet egs-exclusive-paid-beta-test discount after a year.
But I'm Currently Playing....
Hard Reset. Missed this one the first time around, tried the demo as above. Plays okay, looks very nice. Seems legit. £10 or £15 for the Redux revamped version.
Styx 2. Or Styx 1.01. Exactly the same gameplay, exactly the same annoying 4th wall-breaking protagonist, but with prettier backgrounds.