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Incline Revisiting Old Games (Again)

Discussion in 'General Gaming' started by Falksi, Jul 7, 2019.

  1. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    I always remember wanting to play this, in fact I got my first PC in '96, and this was one of the games which motivated me to getting one. Ironically, I never picked it up and have neevr played it either.

    I'll pop it on the list. I'm gonna do Bart's Nightmare, Lufia 2, & Ghost & Goblins as requested first though.

    But before all that, I've been playing some 2 player stuff with the missus past few weeks too, so time for me to write them up too.
     
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  2. BLOBERT Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron

    BLOBERT
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    BRO IF YOU LIKE BEATEMUP GAMES CAPTAIN COMMANDO ARCADE IS GREAT

    SKILL MATTERS
    ROSTER WITH SIGNICANT DIFFERENCES
    LARGE MOVE SET
    VARIED ENEMIES

    BRO CAPTAIN COMMANDO MIGHT BE THE PINNACLE OF THE ARCADE BEATEMUP SADLY RELEASED TOO LATE FOR WODESPREAD LOVE

    ANYWAYS IM ON VACATION NEXT WEEK AND ILL BRING MY MODDED PSP MAYBE ILL JOIN YIY IN A FEW REVUEWS
     
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  3. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    I reviewed that on page 4 of the thread mate, and wasn't a fan of it at all I'm afraid. It was the SNES version, so not sure how much that differs from the arcade, but I just found it so slow & cumbersome.

    Feel free to counter-review it though. It's all about different POV's and opinions :)

    I am hoping to start including arcade games as Grauken suggested. I've ordered one of the all-in-one arcade sticks with the games included, but I'm still waiting on it. I want to play them as originally intended - hooked up to a cabinet with the joystick too.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020
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  4. Jrpgfan Savant

    Jrpgfan
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    Captain Commando was great, there was nothing mediocre about it. I agree with everything Blobert said.
     
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  5. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    On the SNES I found it slow as fuck. Really cumbersome & lacklustre. Which version did you play?
     
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  6. Jrpgfan Savant

    Jrpgfan
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    Arcade and PS1. I didn't play many beatemups on my old ps1 but I used to like this one so much I've replayed it quite a few times.
     
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  7. Thac0 Hopeless Optimist Patron

    Thac0
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    Fascinating since it has such a stellar reputation. Its strengths you describe sound like my Jam, and I can stomach it's weaknesses so it's probably a game for me. I just wish they would bring this out for the Switch or Steam so I wouldn't have to emulate it.
    I have no problems with emulators in general, I even have one installed for Xenogears currently, but I tend to play emulated games a lot less than Games I actually paid money for for some arcane reason.
     
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  8. Reality Learned

    Reality
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    I found Golden Sun a mixed bag too, but my problem was that the Djinn were an interesting (Charather Stat VS Summon Burst Damage) decision for the first half of the game, but after about Kraken fight onwards I think that (the time you have 4 per charather) that the Charather Stat started to always be more valuable than using them in battle, and from that part of the game onward it was just 3 beatsticks + group heal to victory. --- I expect Endgame to be anticlimatic in JRPGs, but GS felt like the snowball started a little too early.
     
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  9. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Looking at it online, both versions look way faster than the SNES conversion.

    When I get the arcade stick I'll review the arcade version (if it's included)

    Yeah, I think it's very taste specific, which is why I tried to make mine as clear as possible.

    Can't fault you for enjoying the authentic experience more, it's one of the reasons I want to play the arcade stuff on a proper stick & cab if poss.

    Couldn't agree more. I didn't make it to the end game because I just couldn't keep my interest in it (think I got about 2/3rds of the way through). It reminded me a bit of FF8's GF system, where fully drawn junctioned GF's were far more worth not doing anything. It's beginning really put me on the backfoot too and, despite some interest later down the line, I struggled to recover from that.
     
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  10. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Sunset Riders - SNES/Arcade

    [​IMG]


    So I was keen to review this after Golden Sun, because it continues on with the theme of pacing. Played it many times back in the day, always had it down as a 4/5 game. I've also been playing it with the missus too this weekend, so now seemed like a good time to go for it.

    Returning to it, I've found it even better. If ever there was a perfectly paced arcade experience, this is it. The first level lets you settle in to the shooting action, then you jump on the back of your horse to add some spice, then you have a bonus stage, and then it's back to the shooting. 3 sections in and you've not even repeated a one of them yet. Said levels are perfectly length-ed too, as is the game itself on the whole, and the mechanics and controls are also really tight as well. The team that made this really knew their craft to a tee.

    It's also amazing how tough a level & boss can seem at first, but then within a few tries you get the patterns down & crack on. It's balanced that way superbly, and the game's very satisfying for it. There's hardly ever any bullshit deaths involved from the unknown or unseen, and boss attack patterns are also balanced beautifully so that they test skill, but can be done perfectly if you're good enough. Just like the best bosses in Souls games. Standard enemies don't offer much in the way of real resistance, but they serve as the games stormtrooper type cannon fodder, they hit more than stormtroopers do too, and help convey that sense of you being a badass.

    And fuck me I just love the vibe of the game too. Right from that very first "Bang!.....yeeheeeee!!!" it just fucking kicks arse. The tunes especially rock the casbah, and aren't repeated too much either. The small touches such as the dance scene, & boss voices (which are really good for that era) add to everything as well, and constantly keep it feeling fresh.

    As usual with this type of game, once you've finished it you've seen it all. You can play through with one of the other characters, but that won't make enough of a difference to change the experience drastically though. However, superb music, great level pacing & stage variety, memorable bosses, excellent presentation etc. all combine to make a jack of all trades game which manages to get most of the key elements right, and provides a real fun western vibed experience for it.

    Not only the good experience I remember, but even better now I can appreciate more of the elements of it's design. Love it.

    :5/5:
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2020
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  11. BLOBERT Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron

    BLOBERT
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    BRO MAME IS EASY

    GAMEPAD WORKS IN A PINCH

    I COMMENTED ON YOUR STATEMENT THAT CAPTAIN COMMANDO WAS A MEDIOCRE ARCADE GAME PORT MAY HAVE SUCKED BUT ORIGINAL WAS AWESOME

    BRO MAYBE I USED THE QUOTE THING WRONGSED
     
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  12. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Bro :bro:
     
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  13. Lilura RPG Codex Dragon Lady

    Lilura
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    Why are graphics so pixelated. SNES does not look like that.
     
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  14. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Maybe coz it's a large or sharpened pic? It's the SNES version. Here's a screen I've just grabbed from it............

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Bart's Nightmare - SNES

    [​IMG]


    Another one of rusty_shackleford's suggestions, I remember owning this for some time back in the day, and I also remember having a very much love hate relationship with it too, leaning towards hate more than love back then.

    How times change eh? Whilst there is still something of that hate still there, I'm leaning way more towards love than hate now for sure. The first thing to appreciate is just how bizarre & original the game is in itself. With it being a famous licence, they could have easily have churned out a bog standard platformer, but instead they went for this mad dream world, and you can tell they really had some fun in doing so too. You never know quite what to expect next, the randomness keeps it fairly fresh throughout, and on return playthroughs too.

    The Dream World consists of a standard street section (fluffy daft fun & main bulk of the game); inside an Itchy & Scratchy cartoon (chaotic comical madness, but with sloppy controls & a bit too repetitive); playing as Bartman (good off centre SHEMUP action); playing as Indana Bart (tricky isometric puzzle platforming); floating round in Bart's blood (inertia based underwater combat); and finally playing as Bartzilla (railroaded popamole destruction). Inevitably some of the stages work far better than others, and I also think it's fair to say that some of them are a bit too long too, but overall they're all fairly fun in their own different ways. Some people will like some, others will like others, but personally I enjoyed all of them apart from Indiana Bart, which seemed to create too many impossible situations for my liking.

    And sadly impossible situations do rear their head throughout most of the game a little too often in general. In fact it can often throw huge lumps of bullshit at you, I mean some stuff you blatantly can't see coming at all, and because of that frustration rears it's head pretty regularly. Plenty of "WTF?" hits & deaths in there.

    They do absolutely nail the visuals & "weird" vibe though, it really feels like your playing a dream in the Simpsons universe, and all the wackyness is very entertaining. What they don't nail is the sound. Now the tunes are great, and suit the game very well, but unlike the graphics there's a real lack of Simpon's feel there. For example when you fight Itchy & Scratchy, there's no sign of their "they fight...." theme tune anywhere.

    Overall though it's very good, if sloppy and sometimes frustrating, fun. And worth having in your collection for it's originality & sillyness alone.

    :4/5:
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2020
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  16. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Star Control - PC/Megadrive

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    We all know about the sequel, but the original is talked about far less, even in the wake of the 2018 reboot. In my many years of posting on here (3 to be precise if we're counting stars), I don't think I've actually ever seen it mentioned in any other thread other than the reboot one. I'll always remember seeing Ballistic's add for this in Mean Machines......

    [​IMG]

    ......Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Sci-Fi & Sports. 3 outta 4 'aint bad. Look at the artwork on all those covers though, Onslaught especially. How could such an add not peak your interest? So Star Control was a semi-fave of mine back then, how's it holding up now?

    Damn fine, and in a word, Tense. And to say the game contains a lot of flaws, it's still a fucking cracking game to play, which I couldn't put down for a few days solid whilst reviewing it. See the game has this absolutely fucking stupendously brilliantly crafted balance in all elements of it's gameplay. There's so many twists and turns throughout, I lost count of the number of times which I thought I had the CPU on the run, then they had me legging it, and back again. Fucking brilliant stuff. That applies to both space battles & tactical sections too. In fact, to say how simple the the tactical aspect of the game is, it's still something which I really enjoyed.

    Combat itself is a mixed bag which definitely has way more good than bad, however when the bad elements align then it can really drag it down. This tends to happen when you play on the hardest difficulty settings against the CPU, and certain battles became a war of attrition. It takes a lot of the fun out of it when you spend most of the battle on a never ending chase just to get close to your enemy, and this happens way more when you play as the bad guys. Also, the scenarios where your ship selection is largely limited, and you essentially playoff controlling a "weakness" ship against a "strength" ship are annoying too. It's fine on the easier difficulties, but on the hardest one again it just makes for long, drawn out battles.

    Another minor annoyance is that the tactical grid looks cool, but can also be confusing at times, and they really could have done with a radar to show you where the planets are in combat. Crashing into a planet which was off screen & dying (esp in the heavier ships) is not an uncommon event, and use of planets plays a big part in winning on harder difficulties.

    But it's just so addictive, and that's just in one player mode. Where it absolutely shines is in two player combat, and in particular the melee mode (especially random melee). Me & the missus have sunk hours into that mode this week, and playing against a human opponent really lifts the game up another notch. The more chaotic & random nature of battles provides a much leveller playing field for certain vehicles, and that's where the real fun is.

    It's got a ton of flaws to contend with, and can be annoying, boring and frustrating all at the same time, but I couldn't stop playing it simple because it's so satisfying, and often so tense. Good single player fun, cracking two player brilliance.

    :5/5:
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2020
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  17. Unkillable Cat Prestigious Gentleman LEST WE FORGET Patron

    Unkillable Cat
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    Codex 2014 Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy
    The biggest flaw I have with Star Control 1? The tactical map won't STOP SPINNING.

    Second-biggest flaw I have with Star Control 1? Being confined to pick Alliance ships vs Hierarchy ships.

    Super-Melee in Star Control 2 fixed this by simply giving the players 14 ship slots each and letting them figure it out from there. Because of that there can be intra-Hierarchy wars, Earthlings going vidi-vici-veni on the Syreen and Arilou vs Yehat-matches, which are 'historic representations' of the original Spacewar!-game.

    But IIRC most versions of SC1 are notoriously slow, especially the Genesis-one. Do you feel that it's slow, or are you speeding up the emulator?

    Finally, DO NOT LOOK at the 8-bit versions of SC1. Just don't. They are a clusterfuck.
     
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  18. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    I didn't find it particularly slow tbh, and the emulator wasn't sped up either.

    But yeah, it's a very flawed game which annoyed almost as much as it excited. However despite all that I just couldn't put it down, and me & the missus are still playing it every night against each other at the mo.

    Looking forward to revisiting Star Control 2 though. Not played that in years. And will defo be steering clear of the 8-bit versions! they look really wank.
     
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  19. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Thunderforce 2 - Megadrive

    [​IMG]

    One of the very first Megadrive games which I ever owned, I remember buying this alongside Forgotten Worlds simply because there wasn't much out for the system at the time and I had some cash to burn. I played it to completion back then, but never nostalgizized about it it. Why?

    Well firstly the game tries to be clever by implementing both overhead & side scrolling shooting sections, the trouble being though is that the overhead sections are shit. The only real challenge here is to avoid running into something which appears from the edge of the screen, be that an enemy, bullet or barrier. It basically means you spend a lot of time inching back & forth constantly, trying to keep hazards off screen rather than just engaging the enemy, and that doesn't really make for any fun at all. It's also a real pain at times to find your next target. Exploring in such circumstances is way more of an annoyance than it is anything else.

    The side scrolling sections do fair a lot better though, with typical traditional SHEMUP action the order of the day. They're nothing spectacular, and the backdrops & settings are actually pretty bland, but they're a damn sight more fun than the overhead sections. Bizarrely, bosses are particularly easy, which again adds to the whole weird feeling of imbalance throughout. I also wonder how much of the enjoyment from said side-scrolling levels come from the levels themselves, and how much just comes from the relief of not playing the overhead sections tbh.

    The power ups are a definite highlight throughout the whole game though. They all just have a certain quirkiness to them, and are all useful in different ways. What is a major drag though is that you lose all, yes ALL, of them on dying. It really hits you in the sack and puts a downer on things. I'm so glad that they changed it for the later games. The bullshit factor throughout it all is quite high too. Not otherworldly, but definitely in a zone where it's apparent enough to annoy fairly often. On your first few play through you will 100% die from things which you couldn't see coming, numerous times.

    One thing which they've always nailed with this series though is the music. It's not as good as the later entries IMO, but it's still a cracking soundtrack. The voice-work however is a mix of technoid-charming, and comically bad. If anyone has any idea what is said at the start of the "Good Luck" message please let me know. I've been trying to figure it out for 30 odd years! A comment on the vid says that it says "This is Exceliza! [I want to fly now.]" But I can't hear that at all.........



    The game's from a time where SHEMUPS were evolving from basic games, into real meaty, quality ones. But the evolutionary step just isn't there enough yet, the experimentation fails, and overall it falls on the wrong side of dated. I'll never play this game again now. It feels like going back to a street where I romanticised about my childhood, but on arriving at the street had flashbacks to the gangs of older lads that used to kick the shit out of me daily until my pubes sprouted, balls dropped, and I then put them in A&E on a weekly basis as an adult.

    Avoid.

    :2/5:
     
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  20. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Sword of Sodan - Amiga/Megadrive

    [​IMG]

    I remember seeing this and thought that the sprites & graphics looked mint, and that it was worth investigating. Thankfully, Mean Machines reviewed it before I had chance to purchase it, and it got panned, so I avoided it.

    I mean it really is a nothing game. Other than the meaty main sprites, that's it, everything else is woefully dire. The animation on those sprites is terrible, in particular the laughable shuffle which the main characters employ to move forward. The sound too is, again, nothing. Just a bunch of grunts & birds tweeting with no in game music and precious little else.

    But the combat, dear lord this is bad. It's a bizare tippy-tap, shuffle along, hit & hope bag of bollocks. Yet again, there's hardly anything to it at all, and progression requires no thought, no skill, no test of reflexes, no test of dexterity etc. it's just a case really of how much boredom you can endure before you decide to give up, as you bash one button and push on.

    After around 3 playthroughs I dropped the difficulty to easy (something I rarely ever do) just to see how far I could get, and if the game held anything more of interest later down the line. I made it to the end of the 3rd level where two giant blokes have at you from each side, and thought "fuck it, I really can't be arsed anymore".

    It really is as if they started making the game, nailed the big sprites, then thought "fuck it, let's just release & sell it on the back of those rather than finishing off the actual game"

    Dog shit.

    :1/5:
     
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  21. Unkillable Cat Prestigious Gentleman LEST WE FORGET Patron

    Unkillable Cat
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    Codex 2014 Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy
    Sword of Sodan is a game that looks great in a magazine... and little else.
     
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  22. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Double Dragon - Megadrive

    [​IMG]

    This game obviously needs no introduction, and I've already passed opinion on the SMS version. I never owned this version as a kid, because by the time it was released on the Megadrive, which was in 1992, I already owned Streets of Rage for the same system, and Final Fight for the SNES. I always planned on adding it to the collection at a bargain price, but never actually did.

    And tbh, I'm glad I didn't. Whilst it's technically a closer conversion to the arcade than the SMS version, it lacks some key elements that made the arcade version so good, and I still prefer to play the SMS version in all honesty.

    The sound FX are one of the main culprits for the dip in quality between the arcade version and this. Simply put, the FX are fucking wank, in particular the punch & kick sounds. It sounds real lame, and takes away a ton of the meatyness & satisfaction. Each blow feels apologetic & girly, and it really is surprising just how much it affects the game overall.

    But worse yet the gameplay is really choppy too. There seems to be a lag at certain points between hitting one of the attack buttons, and the character executing it. Say I'd press punch 6 times, sometimes I'd only see 5 actions, with a significant pause in the middle of that. You should be hitting like a Hurricane, but instead it's more like a wet fart. In fact on the whole, executing moves in this version feels a significant amount trickier than in the SMS & arcade ones. The entire feel of the attacks are fiddly, sluggish and unresponsive, with little fluidity or any type of smoothness to your movements.

    It's a real shame because they did a decent job with the graphics & music, but I found it more of a chore than fun, and still much prefer the SMS version.

    :2/5:
     
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  23. George Duroy Scholar

    George Duroy
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    Next game must be Deus ex,It has to happen, I want to know your opinion on it.
     
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  24. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    :lol:

    Many years yet before that bad boy Georgie boy.

    Besides, I prob replay it every 2 years or so anyway coz it's that fucking brilliant :lol:

    Currently playing through Front Mission & Megaman X
     
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  25. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Front Mission - SNES

    [​IMG]

    Recomended by Modron , I'm a bit surprised that I've never really tried any of these games before. That said, mechs don't really do it for me, I'm way more of a fantasy man, and if I'm going sci-fi I want some mysticism involved much like Star Wars/Dune, or some horror involved ala Aliens. Mechs with people piloting them are just paranoid androids. But it still looked good, and so I gave it a blast anyway.

    What hit me first was that is has a lovely vibe to it. The whole thing is packaged very nicely, with great pixel art backed by some jazzy tunes. It's very easy to pick up, but there's also plenty of things in there to master as well, and the whole shebang screamed quality from the off. The tactical sections are simple enough to drop into no probs, but you also have to apply some thought to be successful too. Employing the wrong tactics here will get you killed, so that bit of challenge is very welcome, and the battles them self work very nicely indeed. However with that said, even though the battles are good, you can easily spend 3 or 4 turns rooted in the same spot trading blows with enemies, which can bog it all down somewhat.

    The story is rooted in politics & realism where possible, and that makes for a nice change from the usual SNES JRPG fare. There's no traditional exploration, all conversations are had in a confined hub, and 90% of your time will be spent either prepping for battle, or taking part in battle. And when it comes to said prep it's a tinkerers wet dream. You've an absolute ton of characters, mechs, weapons, options, paint jobs etc. all to get your teeth into from the off.

    However, a big part of how much you enjoy this game will boil down to how much time you enjoy sinking into those said battle preparations. Within a few stages I found myself spending AGES at the shop analysing, buying & trying the stuff out. I'm not sure you really even need to do so that much to be successful, but the game's set up in such a away that I fell into that trap. And it ground me down big time. So many options, so little time. After a few more battles, I was burned out from it all, despite how good & well crafted it clearly is.

    Ultimately I'd had enough after around 8 or so hours. It started to feel more chore-like than fun, and if I'm playing strategy games I like them to be quickfire like X-COM or Shining Force. Whereas this drowned me with stuff that I couldn't be arsed with.

    But that doesn't mean it's a bad game. Folk also need to bare in mind my poor health means I fatigue very easily nowadays too, so I'd advise any fan of tactical battles definitely check it out, but I also don't think that it'll be for those who prefer their games less work-like either. There is a quality game in there, it just takes some getting to, and between the mass of options & battle turns spent stood fairly still trading blows, it fell the wrong side of the work/fun ratio for me.

    Good game, but for the wrong gamer.

    :3/5:
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2020
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