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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 1:22 am 


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BulletMagnet wrote:
it simply had too much of That WayForward Sloppiness to ignore in my opinion, especially before you track down certain late-game upgrades which smooth things out to some degree.


I wasn't aware they had a reputation for sloppiness, I thought they were well regarded. Any roughness in the beginning didn't really bother me much, since the 'late game' upgrades come after like 3-4 hours.

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either way there are loads of 'vanias that easily outclass it.


But are there loads of controids? I base my own recommendation on the subgenre here, I can only think of a few in total.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 1:29 am 


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Sengoku Strider wrote:
I wasn't aware they had a reputation for sloppiness, I thought they were well regarded.

Don't really know if my opinion on them matches their wider reputation, but I've found that a lot of their stuff gets by primarily on surface charm, and falls back particularly hard on the "lots of cheap hits plus lots of health refills equals 'challenge'" crutch (Mummy certainly fit into this category); not that I'm one to argue that playing a game primarily for the charm is some sort of sin or anything, but I'd definitely state that a lot of WF's library is just that, and that interested gamers should adjust their expectations accordingly.

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But are there loads of controids?

Can't honestly say I'm versed enough in that particular sub-sub-genre to offer much input here, but if Mummy Demastered is indeed one of the better ones out there I'd personally say it needs to up its game.
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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 1:37 am 


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The Shantae games (their flagship series) are all pretty good, but WayForward tends to phone it in on licensed shit if they don't really love the property. Their Aliens and Contra games were both top notch, and I played a surprising amount of Sigma Star Story on GBA back in the day, but they do put out a LOT of borderline shovelware.

ETA: I hear Double Dragon Neon is pretty good too, but I don't love DD enough to get past the fugly ass graphics.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 4:43 am 


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Wayforward can make pretty good games, but I don't understand some of their decisions. They avoid putting in arcade modes in their beat em ups, and thus the games replayability (for me anyway) is limited. That coupled with a higher than usual cost puts me off their games (Initial price for beat em ups are $30 - sale will bring them down $20 but rarely if ever will they go below that).

I want to buy River City Girls and Dawn of the Monsters, but can't justify it for those reasons.
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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 5:02 am 


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Dawn of the Monsters was SO disappointing; it's the most inept PC port I've seen in years. Had to refund it.

It might be a good game on Switch or whatever console it was originally built for, though.

ETA: If you're gonna spend that kind of money, just get Final Vendetta.


Last edited by Air Master Burst on Fri Sep 23, 2022 5:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 5:03 am 


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WayForward is one of those companies that always seems like they're on the verge of making something great but never quite stick the landing.

They take inspiration from great places, with an emphasis on sprite work and 16 bit classic style games, but just never quite seem to be able to gel into a truly great game. Hard to explain why.
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Last edited by To Far Away Times on Fri Sep 23, 2022 5:12 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 5:09 am 


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To Far Away Times wrote:
WayForward is one of those companies that always seems like they're on the verge of making something great but never quite stick the landing.


I dunno, I thought Aliens Infestation and Contra 4 were both pretty great. Those were both well over a decade ago, though. I keep meaning to take a crack at the newer Shantae games, the first few were really good so it's possible they've made a great one by now.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 5:19 am 


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Shantae GBC is definitely one of the best games for the system. Fantastic game considering the hardware.
I couldn't get into Contra 4 with the split screen. I dunno... they don't make bad games but they make games that could be so much more. They seem kinda like a ghetto Treasure to me.
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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 6:36 am 


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BareKnuckleRoo wrote:
I consider Solomon's Key 2 to be superior if only because the Lolo games seem to have an element of trial and error; there's no way of knowing if the heart piece you collect is going to give you shots until you collect it, at least not an obvious one I could tell. Solomon's Key 2 has none of that and it's a pure logic and deduction game from the start of a level.

Quote:
• each heart piece is flagged to give shots or not and you have to figure out which one in the level is which

Yeah, it's the latter. This is basically why I say Solomon's Key 2 is the more polished game.

Lolo has three key elements that might be important to solving certain puzzles, which you can't gauge simply by looking at the room:
- Which heart panels give you shots
- Where an enemy will reappear if you destroy it and block off its location
- Which way the water current leads

I think all of those are inexcusable for a game of this type, and definitely the one thing Solomon's Key 2 got over it. I also think they could all easily be remedied and the game wouldn't be any easier for it, the puzzles of Lolo 3 would still be hair-pulling brain teasers. Definitely a good excuse to give those games a much welcome remake (alongside the regional differences).

Overall though, the fact that the puzzles in Solomon's Key 2 are generally much easier, and individual bits of a puzzle can often be guessed simply by realising there is only one reason the shape of the stage would go in one particular way, is the primary reason I still prefer Lolo 3 over it. It does have a bit of that, but you need go back and reevaluate your approach much more often, and the thrill of solving some of the puzzles in the latter half of the game is like nothing Solomon's Key 2 ever manages to achieve.


BrianC wrote:
The US Lolo II, AFAIK, reused layouts from previous Eggerland games. I'm under the impression that the first JP Lolo, it's JP counterpart, was made to be much more difficult. I'm not sure if US Lolo 3 uses levels from older games, or just has a different level set from the JP version. From what I heard; I'm leaning towards the latter. I remember reading somewhere that the JP Lolo II starts out easter than the US Lolo 3, but I'm not sure on this.

The way I heard it, the first western (it wasn't just released in US, it was popular everywhere. plz) Lolo was basically a collection of older Eggerland stages.
Then the Japanese Lolo "1" was the equivalent of the western Lolo 2, but with different stages.
And the same again for JP Lolo 2 = western Lolo 3. The framework with the overworld and boss battles is identical, but stages are all different. Whether some of the stages from those last two (four) games have any crossover I have no idea about. This is all hearsay, and I think the source was HG101 or something, so take it with a grain of salt.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 3:46 pm 


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BulletMagnet wrote:
falls back particularly hard on the "lots of cheap hits plus lots of health refills equals 'challenge'" crutch (Mummy certainly fit into this category)


If that's where you draw a line with game design that's reasonable. I was wiling to give that aspect of things a pass because I was enjoying everything else it was doing, and my expectations were tempered by this being a not terribly expensive small studio game that wasn't going to outstay its welcome.

Once I had the high jump + harpoon gun I felt like I was able to tackle whatever the game threw at me without taking hits, except for those rocket caskets that pop out of the ground. But in the early going yeah, there's a lot of 'why did they do it that way?' stuff, like the Castlevania bats sniping aimed shots at you while you're navigating floating platforms, or the bone-tossing skeletons who you don't have a straightforward angle at, but can hit you with arcing attacks no problem.

Quote:
Can't honestly say I'm versed enough in that particular sub-sub-genre to offer much input here, but if Mummy Demastered is indeed one of the better ones out there I'd personally say it needs to up its game.


Give Axiom Verge a spin if you come across it cheap. That was the first one that I can think of.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 6:36 pm 


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i don't know what the fuck controid is supposed to be. i'm guessing contra + metroid. but axiom verge is a straight up metroid game through and through. it really doesn't need this made up genre, and i doubt any other game does either.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 7:47 pm 


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Sumez wrote:
BrianC wrote:
The US Lolo II, AFAIK, reused layouts from previous Eggerland games. I'm under the impression that the first JP Lolo, it's JP counterpart, was made to be much more difficult. I'm not sure if US Lolo 3 uses levels from older games, or just has a different level set from the JP version. From what I heard; I'm leaning towards the latter. I remember reading somewhere that the JP Lolo II starts out easter than the US Lolo 3, but I'm not sure on this.

The way I heard it, the first western (it wasn't just released in US, it was popular everywhere. plz) Lolo was basically a collection of older Eggerland stages.
Then the Japanese Lolo "1" was the equivalent of the western Lolo 2, but with different stages.
And the same again for JP Lolo 2 = western Lolo 3. The framework with the overworld and boss battles is identical, but stages are all different. Whether some of the stages from those last two (four) games have any crossover I have no idea about. This is all hearsay, and I think the source was HG101 or something, so take it with a grain of salt.


yes, Lolo was a western semi-exclusive (and I'm aware of it being all Eggerland levels), but that doesn't mean that western Lolo 2 didn't also reuse levels from other games. I wish there was a more comprehensive guide on this, but I'm 100% sure some levels in western Lolo 2 were taken from a JP Eggerland game. IIRC, the Pro levels in Lolo 1 JP and Lolo 2 West are the same. I have to check on this, though.

edit: One video on youtube claims that JP Lolo levels came from western Lolo 2 and 3 (which is probably the other way around), so it's possible western Lolo 3 has some levels from JP Lolo. I'm pretty sure there are a few levels that are the same between JP Lolo and western Lolo 2, as well.

edit: Checked both JP and US Lolo (not dealing with PAL version for this game) and Lolo 2. Pro levels are the same (easy enough to check since they use the same simple passwords, PROA, PROB, PROC, and PROD). Oddly enough, Switch Online got the JP Lolo rather than Eggerland Revival of the Labyrinth or one of the FDS Eggerland games.

Anyway, I'm aware the game came out in Europe, but it's obvious you knew what I meant by US Lolo (I'm aware that version is not US only). I also know of the GB game that got an EU exclusive upgrade compared to the JP version.


Last edited by BrianC on Sat Sep 24, 2022 8:45 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2022 9:12 pm 


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Immryr wrote:
i don't know what the fuck controid is supposed to be.


It sounds like a crappy 3rd party console peripheral from the 90s.

ETA: Or throwaway villains from a crappy old 60s episode of Doctor Who.


Last edited by Air Master Burst on Sat Sep 24, 2022 2:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2022 1:39 am 



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Or maybe some type of disease.

*Patient goes to doctor*

Patient: Doctor, I feel like shit! Fix me.

Doctor: I'm afraid you have... controid. It's terminal.

Patient: FUCK!


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2022 4:58 am 



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Took a break from Banjo Tooie and played some Sega Rally Saturn. Fun and good game but very bare bones. Gran Turismo I know came out 2 years later, but it was SO much ahead. Either way, Sega Rally is good arcade fun. Got 4th play on the Championship.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2022 5:23 am 



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Sega Rally is excellent and everyone should play it. Nobody does arcade racing better than Sega. I got to play the arcade version recently and the Saturn version is actually surprisingly close to the arcade version, considering the massive difference in power between the Saturn and the Model 2. I wish I could bring the arcade version home with me, but the double cabinet is about half the size of my entire apartment, so that's not happening, lol.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2022 9:56 am 


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Sengoku Strider wrote:
I was wiling to give that aspect of things a pass because I was enjoying everything else it was doing, and my expectations were tempered by this being a not terribly expensive small studio game that wasn't going to outstay its welcome.

This is honestly very much my own experience when it comes to the aforementioned Shantae games; in many respects they're just as sloppy as Mummy, but the colorful visuals, cute character designs, and cheeky sense of humor keep me going even past the parts that make me groan, because I'm a sucker for bright, cheery stuff that doesn't take itself too seriously. I don't have the same nostalgia for run-n-guns as you (and plenty of others) do, so I'm less inclined to be distracted from the annoyances in those cases.

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Give Axiom Verge a spin if you come across it cheap. That was the first one that I can think of.

I actually played through that one some years back; it's been too long for me to recite specific reasons why, but I distinctly recalling it being no better than "okay" in my book, though I readily concede that my expectations might have been too high due to the effusive praise the game got from others. From what I can tell the sequel has gone in a somewhat different direction and received a much more lukewarm reception, though I haven't experienced that one firsthand.
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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2022 3:17 pm 


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BulletMagnet wrote:
[I actually played through that one some years back; it's been too long for me to recite specific reasons why, but I distinctly recalling it being no better than "okay" in my book, though I readily concede that my expectations might have been too high due to the effusive praise the game got from others.


This was my experience as well, although I hadn't heard anything about it first and just got it because it was a metroidvania on sale. I didn't even finish it, just kinda bounced off after a few bosses and upgrades.

Shadow Complex was much better, I thought.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2022 3:44 pm 



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Gamer707b wrote:
Took a break from Banjo Tooie and played some Sega Rally Saturn. Fun and good game but very bare bones. Gran Turismo I know came out 2 years later, but it was SO much ahead. Either way, Sega Rally is good arcade fun. Got 4th play on the Championship.

To be fair, it is a belter port and you could level the 'bare bones' thing at VF2 and and other arcade ports of the time (did Ridge Racer have any other modes?). GT's good but I'd still rather play Sega Rally repeatedly than fuck about with licenses on GT. I still fire up the Model 2 emulator to play SR now and I can't even remember the last time I bothered with a GT game.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2022 4:19 pm 


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Air Master Burst wrote:
Shadow Complex was much better, I thought.

Heh, as it happens, this is the "big name" that I couldn't bring myself to finish, though as with AV it was quite some time ago so I couldn't really say precisely what put me off, outside of the aggressively gray visual aesthetic. I do always think of it as one of the key actors in reviving the "metroidvania"'s long-dormant wider popularity, though.
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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2022 7:25 pm 


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Shadow Complex was one of the early indie games back when Microsoft was firing on all cylinders with the 360 and seeing these well made indie games on consoles was a novel thing at the time.

I finished it and had a good time with it, but what made the game stand out has mostly been lost to history. Back then, getting a high production value indie game was rare, and combined with it being a rarely seen metroidvania style game for only $10 or $15, that was huge. I think what made Shadow Complex stand out wasn't so much how it played, but how it was sold and distributed, if that makes sense.

Nowadays, that wouldn't be enough to standout amongst similar games.

I don't know if a singular game kicked those doors down, but Geometry Wars, Braid, and Shadow Complex all probably have some part in it.
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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2022 8:07 pm 


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The biggest issue with Shadow Complex is that the pace of the action can best be described as "glacial" compared to most of the rest of the genre. The aesthetic is also very of its era, which means everything has the drab gray overcast filter and kinda looks like generic Gears of War.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2022 9:04 pm 


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Sumez wrote:
Did you play the remake that came out a few years ago? I actually like the new graphics (they aren't as pretty as the original, but they offer an interesting alternative), and find the voice acting mostly fitting. But if you don't like either, they can be turned off.


No, I actually never played the remake. It's interesting, but I have a soft spot for the old graphics and MT-32 music, playing on a an old VGA monitor. It's really the bees knees, and I can only play those games every so often because I will remember too much of the puzzles if I don't wait. lol


So, I finished RTMI, and I agree that it isn't nearly hard enough, but the difficultly does ramp up after the 3rd act a little bit. I would say that the biggest issue I have with it is that it feels somewhat unfinished; like there are too many red herrings or dead ends that kind of scream out to be bigger parts of the game, and the story doesn't really feel like it gets fleshed out as much as I wanted it to be. Also, it was a little weird that we didn't get to do push, pull, open, close, etc commands. I know those things are basically under utilized in the other games, but isn't necessarily a reason to leave them out. I'd prefer they just found better ways to use the extra commands in puzzles.

I like the game though. I thought it was a lot of fun, and it was visually good and felt pretty nostalgic.

Edit: Reading now the reviews, the critics seem to like it, so I'm happy about that. I'd like to think there will be another game, and a big success makes that far more likely. We can always hope that they will address the difficulty and interface issue in a new game, and that's very possible given that this kind of game is pretty new to Gilbert and company. Also, there could be a Thimblewood Park sequel, which would be amazing


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 3:30 am 


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I found an Eggerland website with maps that shows which levels came from other games. Western Lolo 2 has a lot taken from previous games and only 10 levels shared with its JP counterpart. Lolo 3 west has mostly unique levels with 10 taken from JP Lolo, and only a handful of training levels and bosses shared with its JP counterpart. Surprisingly only Eggerland Revival of the Labyrinth reuses a level from FDS Eggerland/MSX Egggerland 2. Levels in western Lolo 1 and 2 mostly came from Revival of the Labyrinth FC cart, the second FDS Eggerland (which is pretty much sample levels with an editor, a few from the original MSX Eggerland Mystery), and the original Eggerland Mystery.


Last edited by BrianC on Mon Sep 26, 2022 4:12 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 4:04 am 



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Steven wrote:
Sega Rally is excellent and everyone should play it. Nobody does arcade racing better than Sega. I got to play the arcade version recently and the Saturn version is actually surprisingly close to the arcade version, considering the massive difference in power between the Saturn and the Model 2. I wish I could bring the arcade version home with me, but the double cabinet is about half the size of my entire apartment, so that's not happening, lol.


I agree that Sega indeed was king in arcade racing. I'm an 80s Sega kid and I remember playing Out Run and Hang On a bunch back then. Don't think I ever played Sega Rally though. There was another Sega arcade racing game. I remember it had all Ferraris.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 4:13 am 



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sunnshiner wrote:
Gamer707b wrote:
Took a break from Banjo Tooie and played some Sega Rally Saturn. Fun and good game but very bare bones. Gran Turismo I know came out 2 years later, but it was SO much ahead. Either way, Sega Rally is good arcade fun. Got 4th play on the Championship.

To be fair, it is a belter port and you could level the 'bare bones' thing at VF2 and and other arcade ports of the time (did Ridge Racer have any other modes?). GT's good but I'd still rather play Sega Rally repeatedly than fuck about with licenses on GT. I still fire up the Model 2 emulator to play SR now and I can't even remember the last time I bothered with a GT game.


Wow! Didn't realize some here had that much love for Sega Rally. Yea, the licenses in GT sucked for most, but I loved them. It definitely wanted you to get better at the game. Teaching you about understeer, oversteer and all the real life driving techniques. Sega Rally was way better though for people that just wanted to play and have fun. I still think the physics in Sega Rally feel really good.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 4:19 am 


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Gamer707b wrote:
There was another Sega arcade racing game. I remember it had all Ferraris.


You know that could refer to more than one Sega arcade game? Both F355 Challenge and some Outrun games qualify.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 2:22 pm 


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Sumez wrote:
I'm on chapter 3 of Return to Monkey Island, and conversely I don't think I'd really recommend this game to anyone who's a fan of the series or genre. At least wait until it's going on sale.
It completely drops the ball by seemingly being afraid of alienating its audience by having actual adventure game puzzles. Instead you're pretty much just going through laundry lists for people of things to do, never needing to think about the solutions for anything.

I can sort of follow this argument coming straight out of chapter 2, which is imo the weakest part of the game and indeed feels like a long and slightly tedious chain of fetch quests. However, I don’t think this description fits the game as a whole.

I’m on chapter 4 right now and feel this is where the game really opens up. Apart from it being a little too easy overall, I don’t have much to complain. It’s pretty much what I had hoped for, even though I suspect I’ll probably find Thimbleweed Park to be the overall better game when I’m done with RtMI.

I absolutely love the new art style, btw. I’m fact I wish I had remakes of the first two games using this style. I found the visuals of the remasters horrible, and while I think the original graphics of the first game still hold up remarkably well, those of the second one look fabulous on a 14 inch CRT, but turn into a smudgy mess on any other type of screen.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 2:27 pm 



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BrianC wrote:
Gamer707b wrote:
There was another Sega arcade racing game. I remember it had all Ferraris.


You know that could refer to more than one Sega arcade game? Both F355 Challenge and some Outrun games qualify.


Well, obviously it's not OutRun as I already mentioned that. Lol. Now that you mention it, it had to be F355 Challenge.


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 Post subject: Re: What [not shmup] game are you playing now?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2022 5:40 am 


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Herr Schatten wrote:
I can sort of follow this argument coming straight out of chapter 2, which is imo the weakest part of the game and indeed feels like a long and slightly tedious chain of fetch quests. However, I don’t think this description fits the game as a whole.

I’m on chapter 4 right now and feel this is where the game really opens up. Apart from it being a little too easy overall, I don’t have much to complain. It’s pretty much what I had hoped for, even though I suspect I’ll probably find Thimbleweed Park to be the overall better game when I’m done with RtMI.

I wrote my post at around chapter 3, and the game indeed does open up a lot on the next chapter.
At this point you get to both go to new places, and meet new people which satisfies the sense of going on a pirate adventure, which the game should have done from chapter 1 (as the first three games of the series did). The puzzles also start to feel like actual adventure game puzzles. Some of them are good even, and I actually got stuck for a few minutes at one time. The solution never felt anywhere near as satisfying as it does in pretty much every LucasArts game from their golden age (or in Thimbleweed Park), but it's a big step up from the first three chapters.
The game should have started like this, or at least just used the revisiting-old-locations part as the introduction "tutorial", and then tried to move up from there. Instead the very next chapter is by far the most boring of them. I was expecting a big explosive finale, but the game instead goes out with the weakest whimper I could imagine, both in terms of gameplay and storytelling.

Spoiler: show
It's not that I expected anything grand from "the secret" itself. I don't think what we got was the same as what Ron Gilbert had imagined back in the 90s, but I think the core idea was probably the same. And the bait-n-switch theme park ride ending itself isn't any different from the legendary (and controversial at the time) Monkey Island 2 ending. I loved that ending at the time, and I absolutely don't mind Return to MI going in that direction either - in fact I was hoping for it! But even MI2 still gave us a cool adventure-style "boss fight" at the end!
RMI just ends abruptly instead, right when you as the player think things are getting interesting.

It's a douchy way to treat your audience, and similar to (but even worse than) how Thimbleweed Park ended.

Hell, what was even the purpose of introducing the three new pirate leaders, giving them all individual personalities and a lot of screen time, and then never going anywhere with them? They ended up playing absolutely no role in the game's story.


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