MORE GAMES PLEASE 2020!
So it’s been a big 5-6 weeks here. Rabbit and I have moved, end of year work crunch, all the fun stuff has been happening.
That said, I did get some gaming in – including finishing a couple of video games! I even got a platinum. Yay!
So considering the huge welcome back article earlier today, let’s jump straight into what I played.
The Tokyo Series (and indeed most Jordan Draper games I back) are games I love, but always have trouble pitching to others why they excite me. The come in plain boxes, have small components, and usually can be multiple games in one box.
Michael Fox (no, not that one) and Jordan Draper have collaborated on expanding Tokyo Jutaku, a dexterity game in the Tokyo Series. The fruits of this collaboration is MegaCity: Oceania. It also doesn’t hurt that thematically it’s played just off the Gold Coast 😀
There is a dexterity component of building up your city on a tile according to a random plan. Then, you have to move your completed section into the central MegaCity, all while trying to maximise points.
It sounds like two genres that shouldn’t work together, but it did. MegaCity: Oceania was fun while having deep stratagies hidden away. Building your city is fun, and you can take your time to a degree. Moving your city without anything collapsing is tense, without being frustrating. Give it a look if you get the chance.
I think this will be a great way to get people to look at other Jordan Draper games I own
Days of Wonder knows how to present games well. Best known for the Ticket to Ride series, Days of Wonder publishes a staggering amount of well-known games. For example, Memoir 44, one of the most popular tabletop war games, is also a Days of Wonder game.
Deep Blue is a push your luck game crossed with hand management/deck building. That can sound daunting, but like Ticket to Ride a wide range of gamers can jump straight in.
I didn’t think about it at the time, but on reflection I definitely got a ‘Quacks of Quedlinburg lite’ feeling about Deep Blue. I think the games are different enough, but a lot of those base ‘do I or don’t I?’ moments dominate both games.
What can I say? I am just going to have to pull more people in for some more games and really give Deep Blue a workout 🙂
I have talked about Professor Evil and the Citadel of Time before. You can see my review of it here. A puzzle in a board game, with a lot of replayability – sounds good to me!
While taking a break from starting to catalogue the library, Alpal and I sat down for a game. And for some reason, absolutely smashed it. I can’t see anything we did wrong, and we didn’t use an optimised team – we just did really well.
So now I suppose I am just going to have to track down the expansion. Professor Evil and the Architects of Magic adds new characters, powers and objectives. It even adds time portals, meaning the Professor himself can take multiple turns in a row if you aren’t careful!
I didn’t know what to expect when Alpal showed me Atlantis Rising. I had heard mostly good things about it in the past, but I didn’t realise it had a revised edition.
Playing three players, we dove into the cooperative worker placement game. The idea is simple – Atlantis is sinking, and the players must work together to build a cosmic gate (cough stargate) to escape.
During setup, I joked that we should pay on Forbidden Island to get used to it. Turns out, I was kinda right. The board sections get flipped when they sink, and player powers can bring them back.
The other similarity is that lovely ‘have your turn, now deal with bad things’ mechanic. If you don’t like games like Pandemic or Forbidden Island, Atlantis Rising won’t be for you.
If you are a fan of these sorts of games though, give Atlantis Rising a try. I will need to try it at different player counts, but I can feel a full review coming at a later stage.
On paper, Pyramid of Pengqueen sounds like a lot of fun. One player takes the role of the Pengqueen/Mummy, and the other players have to steal the treasures.
This plays out on a two-sided magnetic board, with the Pengqueen on one side and everyone else on the other. The Pengqueen can’t see where the player pieces are, but the players can all see where the Pengqueen is.
It’s cute, and the theming with the Icecool isn’t terrible. Feels a little like a wannabe Ducktales comparison, but that might be my age talking.
While this is aimed at younger players, I would say to the older person watching the young ones play to be prepared for fights. The Pengqueen has most of the advantages, and there is going to be inadvertent cheating by everyone.
I am going to review Pyramid of Pengqueen very soon, watch out next week to get my full thoughts.
Pokemon Shield – Switch
I FINISHED POKEMON SHIELD! I AM CHAMPION!
And that’s about as far as I think I am going to take it. I am not really interested in the usual post-game cleanup to fill my Pokedex. The battle system sounds interesting, but I am not really invested in that either.
What I did have was a fun time playing through the story. There is a lot of love and hate for the new entry in the series. Like any opinion, both sides have fair points. But I wouldn’t go so far as to say one side is right.
Pokemon has excelled for me as a light RPG experience. Pokemon Shield lived up to this for me. Yes, I would have liked some story holes filled in, but I can say that for any of game in the series. Bottom line is I had fun, I enjoyed the experience, and you will see my full thoughts in a couple of weeks 🙂
And, since I wrote all this, it looks like I’m not done with Shield. Friday, Nintendo and Game Freak announced the first ever Pokemon DLC – there will be more story later this year!
Terminator: Resistance – PS4
My first Platinum trophy since Kingdom Hearts III in February 2019. Well, that’s not technically true. I finished Access Denied in March, but I don’t count that Platinum Trophy. Why not? You will have to wait a couple of weeks for that tidbit 😀
Enough teasing, I finished Terminator: Resistance. The two and a bit weeks of no gaming with the move didn’t diminish the experience a jot.
Now, Terminator: Resistance is not what I call a shooter – at least at easy or normal difficulties. You shoot at things sure, but this isn’t a twitch shooter like Call of Duty. Conversely, while there are stealth elements, this isn’t a Metal Gear Solid either. You have a lot of freedoms when it comes to the machines recognising you.
The story itself isn’t exactly groundbreaking either. But it did make me want to keep playing it and explore the world. Terminator: Resistance is fan service done well, in my opinion. Set characters, set events, but a unique story that enhances the whole.
For more, you will have to wait until Friday for my review.
Final Fantasy XV – PS4
Oh, I have wanted to play this for years now. Open-world RPGs are games I love to play when I can really sit back and take my time with them. Hence, a massive backlog of 80+ hour games waiting to be played!
I started a while ago not too long after the initial release, then had a bad thing happen during my first play. It took almost four years for that annoyance to stop creeping in as I loaded the game! But now I am happily working my way through it.
I have probably spent almost 10 of the 30ish hours played just letting the Regalia drive me around. This doesn’t sound very good, but it is how I have been playing. When I could lie back on the couch, do a few hunts or explore an area, then kick back and relax and watch AP build up – why not? The point of a break is to have a break after all. Final Fantasy XV has let me do that.
I am only up to Chapter 7 for people that have already played through it. Seriously, I am taking my time. So this will probably pop up as my video game for the next few weeks, especially on PlayStation. So sorry in advance for lots of pictures of bros in a car 😀
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order – PS4
So one of my favourite YouTubers is Jirard Khalil, aka The Completionist. I had already heard mostly good things about Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, but his review convinced me to get it that night.
And I had fun with it. Playing on easy, I died multiple times in the start/tutorial section of the game. This didn’t put me off playing though, as I loved the world and the pace of the story setup.
I finished the beginning section, then played long enough to open up flying to another world of my choice. By now, most of the controls were in muscle memory. I had a feel for the rhythm of the gameplay. I wanted to sit and really get into it. Only one thing stopped me.
I am one of those gamers that hates significant actions being assigned to L3/R3. Clicking a stick does not come naturally to me, and R3 all but replaces X in Fallen Order.
I have a plan though. I have already preordered one of the newly announced Dualshock 4 Back Button attachments. Come mid-February, I will be able to play Fallen Order and use those buttons mapped to L3 and R3.