What I’ve Been Playing This Week

Bloodborne: I can stop whenever I want. I just don’t want to is all.

Nier: Automata: I don’t think I’ve ever been so confused by a game. As in, when it’s good it’s very good. When it’s bad it’s the very definition of boredom. I’m getting near to ending C, and it’s been good. But endings A and B, the side quests for the most part had good endings, but the game play was incredibly boring. For all the innovation with the story and it’s presentation, the game play often boiled down to go to place and talk to guy, then go to a place to talk to someone else and then go back to talk to the other guy again. If not that, go to place to kill some things and collect stuff off the floor type of side quests. And I’m not sure I can forget all that drudgery when it comes to the good stuff. And there’s crafting and gathering parts for weapon upgrades and that always annoys me. The perspective changes in game play can be good, but I feel this game overplays this and goes to the well once too often. The combats enjoyable, but unlike Bloodborne I have no urge to master it, just to get through it now.

In fact the good stuff can be so good it just makes the side quest design look even worse than it is. The side quests in some cases have genuinely great dialogue and story content, but they are wrapped in boring game play. And some of the story has been utterly great.

But like I said, there’s some ways to go so I’ll hold off before giving a full opinion. Still, I’m very conflicted about the whole thing. That full opinion will be a long time coming.

Absolute Drift Zen Edition (AKA Initial D, Minimalist edition): I wanted to write about this game this week, but I can’t figure out how to frame the writing. But it’s good. Well I like it. Your mileage will entirely depend on your fondness for single mechanic games and challenges. Absolute Drift is a triumph of minimalism. Your only aim is to drift and everything else damned. But mastering that mechanic is a wonderful feeling, and arcing a nonstop 10 second drift, ah man, it’s beautiful. There is an over world filled with challenges which is both a fun place to hone skills and a great place to chill out.

Oxenfree: This has been on the back log for a while. I fired it up on Wednesday, and I had a lot of fun. The dialogue system really stands out. It actually feels realistic, with conversations including interruptions and if you miss a prompt, the chance to make a comment vanishes. That’s great. I think I’m nearing the end of the story, but putting this off for so long has been a bit of a mistake. The characters are good, the visuals work and the soundtracks pretty great. Good stuff all around.

What I’m Looking to Play:

The Last Guardian: This is on my pile of games to play. In fact it’s right in front of the PS4. Unfortunately, it was blighted by the fact it isn’t Bloodborne. Which to be fair, isn’t its fault, but this is a curse many games are blighted with. Seriously though, Miyazaki, why is Bloodborne so good? I’ve had to stop comparing other video games to it. They just can’t keep up.

Gravity Rush 2: I had a lot of fun with the first one, so why I haven’t fired this up sooner is a bit of a mystery. I’ll try and get round to it some time.

And last, but not to be the least, some gifs I’ve made this week:

First time I’ve ever been perfect on the Ebrietas head charge. Good times.

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3 thoughts on “What I’ve Been Playing This Week”

  1. Oh man, Ebrietas… You’re gonna trigger my PTSD. For realsies, though, I was amazed how well I did against her in my most recent Bloodborne playthrough. I played with the Beast Claws in their fully transformed state, and I expected to die a ton due to their risk-reward nature. Then I beat her on my first try.

    NieR: Automata sounds like a similar experience to the first NieR in exactly the way I feared. The first NieR had some awesome moments, but so much in between was mundane beyond belief. Luckily I had bought it used at GameStop, meaning I was able to return it because I finished it within a week.

    As for me, I’ve been playing an indie Metroidvania game called Hollow Knight. It’s pretty damn awesome. I’ll leave it at that because I’m already writing about it.

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    1. My first attempt with Ebrietas took 25 goes (or there about). Haven’t lost to her since. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a game show a players progress as good as Bloodborne. Also, props on the beast claw work! Good stuff right there.

      With Nier, it’s all subjective. I think coming after Horizon: Zero Dawn, well, I think it’s easy to get burned out on open world stuff. And I think I just prefer From Soft style combat to Platinum style combat, so that plays into it. Automata is definitely worth a look though, there is a lot of good stuff going on in there.

      Hollow Knight looks great. Alas, I’ve only got a PS4 for gaming so it’ll have to wait. I have a laptop but it’s a bit old, and now it’s only got one fully functioning fan. Really due for a replacement. Perhaps a gaming replacement.

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      1. I certainly still want to play Automata. I thought the demo was amazing, and all the bizarre stuff I’ve seen about it since makes me highly curious.

        I must admit I’m guilty of dropping the ball on Horizon. I played a good portion of it and really liked it, but then Breath of the Wild hit… That game is so great at subverting the often checklist-like structure of so many AAA open worlds that I had a hard time returning to Horizon when I was done. I loved how beautiful Horizon was, and the design (both aesthetic and gameplay-wise) of the machines was incredible. Plus it absolutely was not too easy like I feared it might be.

        I hope Hollow Knight makes it to consoles before too long. It plays much better on a controller anyway.

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