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The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

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argyle
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Re: The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

Post by argyle » Tue Jun 28, 2022 12:49 pm

Games added: Capcom Fighting Collection, Ratchet & Clank: A Rift Apart, and I technically already owned FF7 Remake but I got the free PS5 upgrade & bought the DLC so I can play it, finally

Last week: Finished Darksiders 3. Played Two Point Hospital, some funky jigsaw puzzle game I got on the Xbox for dirt cheap, and Ratchet & Clank.

This week: Mainly R&C.

So I (re)bought a PS5 this past weekend. Stopped by GS late Saturday afternoon to trade in something & pick up that Capcom collection, and I asked the manager how long the PS5s had lasted that morning (I had gotten an email the day before saying they would have bundles for sale on Sat.). He laughed and said they still had some, so a few mins later I was walking out with one. Ever since I sold my Spidy PS4 Pro I've been looking for another Pro, but those things are getting rare as hen's teeth - and a used one at GS runs $400. At that price, I figured I may as well go ahead & just get the cinco. So I got it primarily so I can play my unplayed PS4 games I've been jonesing for, but I'll play exclusives on it as well - the Series X will still be my primary system for anything that's multi-plat.

Oh yeah...how have you guys been? ;) No divorce over here, Tam & I are one of the only really solid things I have going on right now! It's mainly been issues w/ my parents & their declining health, trying to talk them into moving closer to us so we can actually look after them, dealing with work, dealing with my side gig, and dealing with house issues. It's been a lot of this, basically:

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ObeseInfamousIntermediateegret-small-1.gif (1.13 MiB) Viewed 344 times

Unfortunately, some plates fall from time to time - sorry you guys were one of those. :( I also took a week off last week, and it was way too short.

Hope all has been well here in my absence. :)
"When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed
if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I
became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the
desire to be very grown up.” ― C.S. Lewis

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isthatallyougot
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Re: The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

Post by isthatallyougot » Tue Jun 28, 2022 1:07 pm

Glad to hear you're hanging in there argyle. Sorry you've got so much on your plate. Ah life...
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canedaddy
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Re: The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

Post by canedaddy » Tue Jun 28, 2022 2:18 pm

argyle sighting! Glad to hear the marriage is intact and you're living and breathing. :P Hope everything goes well with all those plates.
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argyle
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Re: The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

Post by argyle » Wed Jun 29, 2022 4:08 pm

So a couple of gaming-related things:

First, Elden Ring. It's not perfect. In fact, it's downright rough in places. A lot of the late-game enemies hit like a truck - and I'm not talking bosses, just regular enemies. This isn't just my non-Souls-playin' "git gud" self saying this either, I've seen quite a few Souls vets say the same thing. Some of the enemies are pretty near broken *cough*giantbirdsnearthebloodpalace*cough*. The quests are beyond cryptic - I'd go as far as to say many of them are impossible to complete without using a guide unless you are insanely lucky. Some of them don't tell you anything about what's next. Heck, they often don't even tell you anything IS next. This may play fine in a more linear traditional Souls experience, but in a massive open world it's frustrating, to say the least. Not saying I want traditional quests, or even necessarily map markers, etc. - just more dialog that actually gave some indication of where you should explore next would be fine (and to be fair, some of the questlines do this - just not all of them). Also, some of the bosses - especially late-game ones - pretty much require you to have certain builds in order to beat them. You can re-spec...but only so many times. It requires an item that there are a limited number of in the world. Why they put a hard limit on this instead of the more typical "each respec costs more money/resources/whatever" I don't know.

So I hated it, right? Hardly. I clocked in well over 200 hours all said & done - and that was a complete playthrough + a new game plus run (I stopped at the final boss in NG+). What the game does right, it does INCREDIBLY right. So much, in fact, that it's worth every second of frustration to experience it. The way they approach open-world design is very fresh and exciting. Exploration for the sake of exploring is very rewarding, and it feels like a real (and yes, deadly) world. I hope their next iteration on this is more polished, but I'll be there for it day one to find out because this was one of the freshest, most enjoyable games I've played in a long long time. If you have the patience for it, it's one of the most rewarding gaming experiences around.

Second, I am completely digging Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart. First, it's gorgeous. I started out playing on "graphics" mode or whatever they called it but quickly switched to "performance". A *slight* downgrade of the bells & whistles, but like I told Tam, "Once you go 60 FPS, you can't go back." The choppy panning you get w/ lower framerates gives me a headache. Anywho, the game itself is just a polished gem, like you would expect. The story is fun, just heartwarming enough (think more Pixar & less mainline Disney ;) ) and really fun. The gameplay is very tight, instantly familiar controls and great pacing. For anyone here that's played it (J I know, dunno if anyone else has) I just played through the Fixer on-rails sequence last night and it was amazing. Just jaw-dropping, really. I said it WAAAY back on the IGN boards, and it's still true - Insomniac is THE top Sony developer in my book, better than Naughty Dog any day of the week. Has there ever been a bad mainline R&C game? I say no.

Eh, let's throw a third in for good measure - I have some making up to do anyway. ;) I had played Darksiders 3 a couple years ago, got really far into it (I'd say about 80%), then got sidetracked. When I came back to it months later, I had completely forgotten how to play. So I figured enough time had passed now to just start over. And I was right - I had a blast with it, and wrapped it up this time. I did kick the difficulty down about a third of the way through because the enemies are kinda damage sponges, but it felt perfectly fine on easy (or whatever they called it - Story?). The game has some really clever environmental puzzles, some interesting areas to explore & really fun combat. My only real complaint is that for some baffling reason, there's no map. You can warp between points, but I found myself guessing a lot about where I needed to go - a map would have eliminated that problem, and also made the world feel more cohesive. But in the end it's a nit-pick, it's still a great game. Really underrated series of games, honestly. And now I can play the 4th one at some point without feeling guilty about never finishing the 3rd. ;) I know the 4th one is a departure gameplay-wise, but I've still heard good things about it so I'm looking forward to trying it out.
"When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed
if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I
became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the
desire to be very grown up.” ― C.S. Lewis

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Phaseknox
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Re: The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

Post by Phaseknox » Wed Jun 29, 2022 5:02 pm

argyle wrote:
Tue Jun 28, 2022 12:49 pm
Ever since I sold my Spidy PS4 Pro I've been looking for another Pro, but those things are getting rare as hen's teeth - and a used one at GS runs $400. At that price, I figured I may as well go ahead & just get the cinco.
My PS4 disc drive still acts up from time to time, so I’m worried that it’s going to stop working completely and when it does instead of getting another PS4 I will of course get a PS5 since it’s backwards compatible. I just hope that there’s a lower priced slim version in the near future, because the current PS5 is gargantuan and I have nowhere to put it.
argyle wrote:
Tue Jun 28, 2022 12:49 pm
I am completely digging Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart. First, it's gorgeous. I started out playing on "graphics" mode or whatever they called it but quickly switched to "performance". A *slight* downgrade of the bells & whistles, but like I told Tam, "Once you go 60 FPS, you can't go back." The choppy panning you get w/ lower framerates gives me a headache. Anywho, the game itself is just a polished gem, like you would expect. The story is fun, just heartwarming enough (think more Pixar & less mainline Disney ;) ) and really fun. The gameplay is very tight, instantly familiar controls and great pacing. For anyone here that's played it (J I know, dunno if anyone else has) I just played through the Fixer on-rails sequence last night and it was amazing.
My brother has been a PC gamer for a while now, and he said the same thing about once experiencing 60fps in games that it’s next to impossible to go back to lower. By the way, j is the only person here other than yourself who has a PS5. Cane, crim and myself still only have a base PS4, and izzy is part of the PC master race. :P
argyle wrote:
Tue Jun 28, 2022 12:49 pm
I said it WAAAY back on the IGN boards, and it's still true - Insomniac is THE top Sony developer in my book, better than Naughty Dog any day of the week.
Play Fuse and then tell me that you still feel the same way about Insomniac. :P But in all seriousness, I still like Naughty Dog more myself as story driven third person action adventure games are one of my favorite genres, and Uncharted 2, 4, The Lost Legacy and The Last of Us Part I and II are some of my favorite games of all-time.
argyle wrote:
Tue Jun 28, 2022 12:49 pm
I had played Darksiders 3 a couple years ago, got really far into it (I'd say about 80%), then got sidetracked. When I came back to it months later, I had completely forgotten how to play. So I figured enough time had passed now to just start over. And I was right - I had a blast with it, and wrapped it up this time. I did kick the difficulty down about a third of the way through because the enemies are kinda damage sponges, but it felt perfectly fine on easy (or whatever they called it - Story?). The game has some really clever environmental puzzles, some interesting areas to explore & really fun combat. My only real complaint is that for some baffling reason, there's no map. You can warp between points, but I found myself guessing a lot about where I needed to go - a map would have eliminated that problem, and also made the world feel more cohesive. But in the end it's a nit-pick, it's still a great game.
I played and finished Darksiders III recently, and I loved almost every minute of it. It was a lot better than I was expecting it to be based on the lukewarm reception that it received when it came out. It’s an awesome third person action adventure platformer with great graphics, gameplay, combat and puzzles. It’s the second best game that I’ve played so far this year with Far Cry 6 just slightly edging it out. I agree that a map would have made knowing where to go a little better, but the little arrow on the compass did a pretty good job of always pointing where you needed to go.
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jfissel
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Re: The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

Post by jfissel » Thu Jun 30, 2022 6:23 am

argyle wrote:
Wed Jun 29, 2022 4:08 pm
So a couple of gaming-related things:
Second, I am completely digging Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart. First, it's gorgeous. I started out playing on "graphics" mode or whatever they called it but quickly switched to "performance". A *slight* downgrade of the bells & whistles, but like I told Tam, "Once you go 60 FPS, you can't go back." The choppy panning you get w/ lower framerates gives me a headache. Anywho, the game itself is just a polished gem, like you would expect. The story is fun, just heartwarming enough (think more Pixar & less mainline Disney ;) ) and really fun. The gameplay is very tight, instantly familiar controls and great pacing. For anyone here that's played it (J I know, dunno if anyone else has) I just played through the Fixer on-rails sequence last night and it was amazing. Just jaw-dropping, really. I said it WAAAY back on the IGN boards, and it's still true - Insomniac is THE top Sony developer in my book, better than Naughty Dog any day of the week. Has there ever been a bad mainline R&C game? I say no.
I can't remember which mode I played on, but it was undeniably a fantastic looking game. Glad you're enjoying it.

Also, there's a pretty good sale on PSN right now. One game that caught my eye was Headlander by Double Fine. It's $3 right now and worth a purchase if you like some platforming/puzzle-solving and the ability to swap your character's head to get different abilities.
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Re: The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

Post by argyle » Thu Jun 30, 2022 9:01 am

Phaseknox wrote:
Wed Jun 29, 2022 5:02 pm
By the way, j is the only person here other than yourself who has a PS5. Cane, crim and myself still only have a base PS4, and izzy is part of the PC master race. :P
That's what I was thinking, but I wasn't 100% sure. Certainly don't blame anyone for holding off, that's what I would have kept doing if I didn't need the PS4 Pro replacement. Funny thing is I had had the system up for sale for a bit & had pretty much decided to just keep it, but hadn't taken it down yet - and then it sold. :P
Phaseknox wrote:
Wed Jun 29, 2022 5:02 pm
Play Fuse and then tell me that you still feel the same way about Insomniac. :P But in all seriousness, I still like Naughty Dog more myself as story driven third person action adventure games are one of my favorite genres, and Uncharted 2, 4, The Lost Legacy and The Last of Us Part I and II are some of my favorite games of all-time.
I didn't say they haven't made any bad games - Fuse was definitely bad (but it was also said that EA did a lot of meddling in the development of that). But I think their games are more consistent than NDs personally. Especially recently, ND seems more concerned with making cinematic experiences than games, and I'm not a fan of them pushing their agendas either (but that's another topic that I won't get into here ;) ). Insomniac just makes games that are FUN to play.
jfissel wrote:
Thu Jun 30, 2022 6:23 am
Also, there's a pretty good sale on PSN right now. One game that caught my eye was Headlander by Double Fine. It's $3 right now and worth a purchase if you like some platforming/puzzle-solving and the ability to swap your character's head to get different abilities.
I'm pretty sure I have that one, but I still haven't played it. Was it a PS+ freebie at some point? If not, I probably picked it up in another PSN sale for cheap. Ah, backlogs. ;)

What I'm really looking for is a good sale on Horizon. Also wouldn't mind the PS5 versions of Tsushima and Spidy, but I'm loathed to pay much for an upgrade that I feel should have been free.
"When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed
if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I
became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the
desire to be very grown up.” ― C.S. Lewis

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Re: The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

Post by isthatallyougot » Thu Jun 30, 2022 9:36 am

argyle wrote:
Wed Jun 29, 2022 4:08 pm
I said it WAAAY back on the IGN boards, and it's still true - Insomniac is THE top Sony developer in my book, better than Naughty Dog any day of the week. Has there ever been a bad mainline R&C game? I say no.
I completely agree. I also enjoy ND, but Insomniac is better in line with my personal tastes. R&C (series) is high on my all-time favorites.

I'm still enjoying Ori and the Blind Forest. It's got some annoying segments that ought to have been redesigned imho, but it's gorgeous, fun to explore and the puzzle-platforming is satisfying.
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Re: The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

Post by canedaddy » Thu Jun 30, 2022 9:37 am

argyle wrote:
Wed Jun 29, 2022 4:08 pm
First, Elden Ring. It's not perfect. In fact, it's downright rough in places. A lot of the late-game enemies hit like a truck - and I'm not talking bosses, just regular enemies. This isn't just my non-Souls-playin' "git gud" self saying this either, I've seen quite a few Souls vets say the same thing. Some of the enemies are pretty near broken *cough*giantbirdsnearthebloodpalace*cough*. The quests are beyond cryptic - I'd go as far as to say many of them are impossible to complete without using a guide unless you are insanely lucky. Some of them don't tell you anything about what's next. Heck, they often don't even tell you anything IS next. This may play fine in a more linear traditional Souls experience, but in a massive open world it's frustrating, to say the least. Not saying I want traditional quests, or even necessarily map markers, etc. - just more dialog that actually gave some indication of where you should explore next would be fine (and to be fair, some of the questlines do this - just not all of them). Also, some of the bosses - especially late-game ones - pretty much require you to have certain builds in order to beat them. You can re-spec...but only so many times. It requires an item that there are a limited number of in the world. Why they put a hard limit on this instead of the more typical "each respec costs more money/resources/whatever" I don't know.

So I hated it, right? Hardly. I clocked in well over 200 hours all said & done - and that was a complete playthrough + a new game plus run (I stopped at the final boss in NG+). What the game does right, it does INCREDIBLY right. So much, in fact, that it's worth every second of frustration to experience it. The way they approach open-world design is very fresh and exciting. Exploration for the sake of exploring is very rewarding, and it feels like a real (and yes, deadly) world. I hope their next iteration on this is more polished, but I'll be there for it day one to find out because this was one of the freshest, most enjoyable games I've played in a long long time. If you have the patience for it, it's one of the most rewarding gaming experiences around.
Well, that checks out 100% with everything I've experienced so far. :) The fun has greatly outpaced the frustration to the point where I am now (early in the cold area) but it sounds like I have some serious headaches ahead.

Are you able to use co-op or call in help for all the final bosses? I haven't done that yet, but I think it would be preferable to respecing over and over and over until all my larval tears are gone.
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Re: The Backlog Check-in Vol. 234: 6/25/22: Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Edition

Post by Phaseknox » Thu Jun 30, 2022 12:16 pm

jfissel wrote:
Thu Jun 30, 2022 6:23 am
there's a pretty good sale on PSN right now. One game that caught my eye was Headlander by Double Fine. It's $3 right now and worth a purchase if you like some platforming/puzzle-solving and the ability to swap your character's head to get different abilities.
Headlander is great, I finished it a while back and recommended it to everyone here like you’re doing now. :P Space Otter Charlie is on sale for $7.49, I know that crim’s been wanting that one. ;)
argyle wrote:
Thu Jun 30, 2022 9:01 am
Certainly don't blame anyone for holding off, that's what I would have kept doing if I didn't need the PS4 Pro replacement.
Is your new PS5 as loud as your old one? I remember that being a complaint of yours when you originally got it, but I think that there have been some changes made since the originals so I wasn’t sure if the newer ones were still as loud as the older ones.
argyle wrote:
Thu Jun 30, 2022 9:01 am
I didn't say they haven't made any bad games - Fuse was definitely bad (but it was also said that EA did a lot of meddling in the development of that). But I think their games are more consistent than NDs personally. Especially recently, ND seems more concerned with making cinematic experiences than games, and I'm not a fan of them pushing their agendas either (but that's another topic that I won't get into here ;) ). Insomniac just makes games that are FUN to play.
My Fuse comment was just a joke, but while the game isn’t very good I wouldn’t necessarily say that it’s bad either. I played and finished it earlier this year and it was a decent third person cover shooter, but it definitely wasn’t the quality that I expect from Insomniac. As for Naughty Dog making more cinematic experiences than games, I don’t totally agree. While their games are definitely cinematic in their storytelling, they’re still games as well. The Last of Us Part II is heavy on story, but has really good level designs, gameplay and combat too. It was improved over the first game. However, it does have some agenda pushing in its narrative and characters which I admittedly wasn’t very fond of and understand why that sort of thing can be a turnoff to some. As for Insomniac, I still need to play Spider-Man which I hear is really good. I just bought The City That Never Sleeps DLC for it, so I plan on playing it sometime soon.
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