What Are You Playing This Weekend?

Oct. 25, 2013: Matt Gerardi, Matt Kodner, and Landon Gray Mitchell

Our video assistant accidentally invents a new Katamari sequel.

By John Teti • October 25, 2013

Our What Are You Playing This Weekend? interviews with A-listers and foreign dignitaries may be on hiatus, but the question remains, and it’s an important one. So from here on out, we’ll be checking in with Gameological/A.V. Club staffers to see how their weekend play plans are coming together. This week, we’re graced with a visit from the Brooklyn “junior staffers”: assistant editor Matt Gerardi, editorial assistant Matt Kodner, and video assistant Landon Gray Mitchell. As always, share your plans in the comments!

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  • Newton Gimmick

    I’ll be playing the new Phoenix Wright, as you might expect. Here’s hoping it deprives me of as much sleep as the previous five.

    In the unlikely event that I have time to play anything else, I guess there’s Candy Box 2.

    • http://www.avclub.com/users/ghaleonq,4597/ GhaleonQ

      Give us your ver-…opinion, as long-time fans have had such a hiatus that there’s no consensus on where it lands in the series in quality. There IS broad consensus that it’s fricking fantastic, though.

    • SamPlays

      Speaking of boxes, I see MOVING BOXES taped up to the right of the mystery staff with the Gap hair/shirt combo.

    • CrabNaga

      Candy Box 2 discussion time! Has anyone figured out how to get the chest in the right room of the Desert Fortress? It seems like I need to be able to fly to get there.

      • duwease

        The desert fortress? Is that the dragon castle, or well after?

        • CrabNaga

          I forget exactly where I got the key to enter it. I think I got it from one of the chests in “The Hole.”

      • stakkalee

        SPOILERS – Do you already have the pogo stick? I used a combination of the pogo stick, the teleport spell and the Summoning spear to build up several layers of summoned creatures, then jumped on top of them and kept summoning more until I had a nice little monster stairway to get me to the chest. In that chest? Rocket boots. Awwww, yeah.

    • Godots17thCup

      The only thing that could possibly stop a massive Dual Destinies binge is my life-crippling addiction to Pokemon X.

  • Newton Gimmick

    So, let’s try an informal poll:

    Upvote this comment if you bought Pokemon X

    Downvote this comment if you bought Pokemon Y

    • ocelotfox

      The only downvotes allowed for polls? I like it.

    • HobbesMkii

      Don’t too many downvotes automatically flag the post?

      • Newton Gimmick

        Let’s find out!

        • Carlton_Hungus

          Go out any buy lots of copies of Pokemon Y so we can get that downvote number up!

      • fieldafar

        I’ve seen a few downvote-heavy comments over at the AV Club, but none of them seem to be flagged.

        • SamPlays

          Lately, I’ve been noticing more deleted comments than usual. Not sure if this is NuDisqus simply making those cases more apparent or if there’s better policing of cunt-related comments by way of excessive down-voting and/or increased editorial review.

      • SamPlays

        BUT WE SHOULDN’T KNOW THE IDENTITY OF PEOPLE WHO BOUGHT POKEMON X THERE’S NO ABILITY TO APPLY ETHICAL OR METHODOLOGICALLY SOUND PRACTICES WHEN PERSONAL INFORMATION IS AUTOMATICALLY DISCLOSED THE INADEQUACY OF DISQUS VOTING TO CONDUCT PROPER SURVEYS IS MAKING ME SCREAM STOP STOP STOP THIS SURVEY MADNESS

        • James Pope

          I Pokemon X’ed your comment so hard.

          • Newton Gimmick

            I would be so happy if that turned into a meme.

    • Citric

      The problem is that you can’t see who downvoted. But I did, because I like my Pokemon to be a question.

      • Newton Gimmick

        I don’t care about individuals so much as numbers. I just want choose the version that’s least popular with other G-LOGs, and maintain the balance.

      • SamPlays

        I would never hire you.

        • Citric

          Because I like to stalk people who buy Pokemon Y?

    • NakedSnake

      Ah, I see. Upvotes are rendered in a pleasing blue color, but downvotes come out in red, highlighting their edgy and negative nature.

    • a_scintillating_comment

      Well damn, I don’t play either but I wanted to participate, so I clicked both, and… I think the world began to crack

  • ocelotfox

    Katamari Dynasty…sounds fantastic, get on it Namco-Koei. Until then, I’ll be playing Pokemon Y, getting my team ever closer to Lv. 100, and filling out the ‘ole Pokedex, and maybe fit in some time for Device 6, which I’ve heard great things about.

    • Newton Gimmick

      The plot of Katamari Dynasty writes itself: One (or more) of the Royal Cousins usurps the throne in a violent uprising that shatters the night sky. It’s then up to the Prince to restore the Cosmos and prove that his Dynasty are the rightful rulers.

  • Citric

    I’m into the special levels of Super Mario 3D Land.

    When I don’t feel like screaming obscenities at my 3DS, it’ll be Luigi’s Mansion and Pokemon I think. I figured out why I usually quit Pokemon, I have a big box of Pokemon I don’t use and feel bad about it, but at that point I’m overwhelmed by the choice and kind of like my party as set up anyway. I’ll press through though, because I’m entertained even if I don’t use all of those Pokemons I’m catching. Also Luigi’s Mansion is charming as you can get.

    • NakedSnake

      Thank god I found a way to get unlimited 1-ups, because some of those special stages are absolutely brutal. But just on the right side of frustrating I guess, because my 3DS is still in one piece.

    • Drinking_with_Skeletons

      That game is so weird. Up through world 8 it’s pretty easy–almost insultingly, disappointingly easy–then it’s like sike, you’re only halfway through and proceeds to take a bat to your pride as a gamer.

      The way it gradually adds to the difficulty of the miniboss fights has earned more than one genuine, hate-fueled “fuck you, game” from me. Need to go back and beat that game.

  • Cloks

    Alpha Protocol! It’s a little known game for an obscure system where the goal is to role-play as Sterling Archer.

    • http://sarapen.ca/ Sarapen

      You can’t sexually harass the mute teenage assassin, which I would think would be game-breaking for a Sterling Archer run.

    • Swadian Knight
      • a_scintillating_comment

        So awesome. I really need to try that again. I was playing it all wrong

      • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

        “Asshole.”
        “Bitch.”

      • Fluka

        I think I gotta bump this game up a few places on the ol’ to-play list.

        • ProfFarnsworth

          It is quite the surprising game. I found it very fun and worth the many bugs encountered, but I played it on a console.

        • Swadian Knight

          Do it! It’s a pretty neat RPG, if you can stomach some bugs and an awful sneaking animation.

          • Fluka

            Aah, that is fantastically awful!

            I got it for cheapsies during the last Steam sale, so maybe I’ll figure it up once I tire of my Fall of Fantasy RPGs Athon Palooza 2013.

          • Cloks

            If by awful you mean amazing. I like to pretend I’m a gibbon.

        • djsubversive

          Yes. Alpha Protocol is a really great RPG attached to a mediocre third-person action game. The conversations are things of beauty. Stealth-punching dudes in the throat never gets old.

          Play Alpha Protocol. This goes for everyone who reads this comment. I can’t recommend it enough. Stick with it through Saudi, the first hub after the tutorial.

    • 65daysofstatic

      Was absolutely blown away with how inconsistent the game felt. That said, I adored my time with it. Glad to hear that there’s someone else who appreciates it on the same level.

      • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

        It’s a weird little gem that alternates between good and so-bad-it’s-good. Plus, Steven Heck!

        • ProfFarnsworth

          You have to love Steven Heck! He gets things done, in his own psychotic way.

        • djsubversive

          “When you’re a burned spy, sometimes you have to work with crazy people. They can be your best friend or your worst enemy, depending on their mood.”

          It’s really hard not to do Burn Notice-y “When you’re a spy…” narration while playing AP.

    • djsubversive

      YES. Duchess-Thorton is the best Thorton. All that’s missing is “Mina… Mina! MIIINAAA!” “WHAT?!” “Danger zone!”

    • RJC

      FYI – Amazon has it on sale for $10.81 right now

      • Cloks

        I got it used at Gamestop for 5.00. Can’t do much better than that.

      • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

        That’s a pretty good deal, but I’ve seen it drop as low as $3.75 on Green Man Gaming. Unless you’re talking about the console version, in which case you’re probably never going to get a better price than $10.81.

        • TaumpyTearrs

          Alpha Protocol is one of the few games that shows up consistently in the Gamestop box that is like 3 games for $15 or games under $10 etc. It is definitely one of the only games I have seen on PS3 for like $6, apart from really old yearly sports games.

  • The_Helmaroc_King

    Someone recently gave me an Android tablet that’s a lot better than my Android phone, so obviously I’m going to spend all weekend playing Angry Birds.

    Nah, I’m just fooling.

    I’m trying to catch up on the last few big Suda 51 games that came out, so I’ve been playing Shadows of the Damned. I’ve beat it once and I’m running through on a higher difficulty right now. It’s about as crude and juvenile as you’d expect, but the game’s alright; it makes me think of a grindhouse version of Resident Evil 4, although nowhere near as impressive.

    Once I’m done with this, I (eventually) plan on playing Lollipop Chainsaw and Killer is Dead. Looking forward to it!

    • TheBryanJZX90

      I loved Shadows of the Damned for pretty much the exact reasons you stated. Gameplay-wise it’s a better successor to Resident Evil 4 than RE 5 or 6 were, at least.

    • BJ

      Great game to play this close to Halloween too. Shadows of the Damned did it for me being a decent Suda 51 fan myself. Haven’t tried Lollipop or Killer is Dead yet either though.

  • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

    I got myself a fancy new 3DS XL on tuesday, so I’ll be messing with that. I’m into pushmo now, and waiting on my “real” games to ship to me. May pick up some more eshop stuff over the weekend though.

    Also halloween party tomorrow (friday)! I’m pretty hyped about my costume this year too. Me and the girlfriend are going as the player characters from Zombies ate my Neighbors. I don’t expect many people to get it, but still!

    And just because I’m desperate, i’m making this the

    ~~FRIEND CODE THREAD~~

    Mine is 1950-8792-9380 but I don’t have any multiplayer games yet. I want to try this swapnote whatsit though.

    • Citric

      Did you get all the friend codes from last week?

      4098-3425-3869

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

        I did not. Between being busy and not even having any multiplayer games to play with people yet, I never bothered. I did pop into the steam chat, but it was at a weird time when there weren’t many people on.

        Also, what games are people playing besides Pokemon? Should I even bother getting Animal Crossing, or has that ship sailed? I figure I could pretty easily find someone to play a few mario kart matches with on occasion, but Animal Crossing is the kind of game you need to be playing regularly I think. Also I’m looking at Kid Icarus pretty hard. I think Luigi’s Mansion has multiplayer? Too many games…

        • Citric

          Luigi’s Mansion DOES have multiplayer, and it’s a neat game all around.

          • DL

            Indeed. Since Halloween is approaching, and I already played Gone Home this week, I’m going to make some more progress in Luigi’s Mansion. I can’t get enough of lurking around dark, old houses this year. I should also read “Fall of the House of Usher”, while I’m at it.

            I’ve never given out my Friend Code online, so I’m somewhat in the dark about certain levels of multiplayer. Since everyone here seems very respectful and intelligent: 1160-9775-2628

            Oh, and @Douchetoevsky:disqus, Kid Icarus has enough entertaining content that it’s basically a must-play, even without the multiplayer.

          • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

            I’ll add you tonight or tomorrow morning when I’m home from work / partying. I think I got everyone else who posted theirs so far.

    • NakedSnake

      I didn’t take part in last week’s either due my lack, until this week, of any multiplayer games. But since I’m giving Pokemon a go, I’m 3239-3322-3468.

      • http://caspiancomic.com/gametheory caspiancomic

        “Ol’ Satan”? I like it.

    • http://caspiancomic.com/gametheory caspiancomic

      Yo yo FD. My friend code is now, as it was last week, 1392-4819-4024

    • Derek_Noakes

      I don’t have a friend code for you, I just wanted to say that that’s one of the best couples Halloween costume ideas I’ve ever heard of. Report back with pictures! Also, marry your girlfriend. She sounds like a keeper.

    • Jackbert

      2466-2262-3080

      Swapnote is pretty fun. You can pass notes in rainbow of colors! Well, six, but let’s not be pedantic.

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

        I think you need to unlock features of it though? That suck, cause I want to make a swapnote rpg campaign, but don’t have the graph paper. And from what I can tell I can’t make multiple page notes yet, or add sounds/pictures, which I’m pretty sure you can do.

        • Jackbert

          Yeah, that part is pretty annoying. Keep using it, towards the beginning you’ll unlock new features practically every time you use it.

    • Spacemonkey Mafia

      I don’t know how much of your non-Muppet life you want to incorporate here, but I’d love to see some costume pictures. That sounds pretty awesome.

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

        I’m not opposed really, but I doubt my girlfriend will be thrilled about me posting her picture on a gaming site. I’ll ask her about it, and MAYBE post something if there is a picture where we don’t look like shit.

        • Spacemonkey Mafia

          I’m sure I can’t understand why.

  • Bakken Hood

    Having learned of the put-every-f’ing-thing-on-a-flash-drive workaround to Halo 4′s unaddressed “can’t access the fucking campaign” bug, I’ll be playing Halo 4 and bitching incessantly about this bug that the dev won’t even admit exists. Wait, no I won’t, because I’ll be camping. Well, maybe I’ll bitch about it anyway.

  • http://sarapen.ca/ Sarapen

    I’ll be playing dress-up, as in walking around dressed as the Arrow, of CW fame. I’m just unsure where I can unload my dollar store plastic bow after this weekend. I don’t know anyone with kids and I’ll never need a shoddily made replica bow ever again.

    • NakedSnake

      Just leave it somewhere some random kids can find it. They have keen eyes for weapons anyhow.

      • http://sarapen.ca/ Sarapen

        I suppose I could go to the nearest playground and ask the kids there if they want some free toys that I have in my apartment. I’ll wear my superhero mask so they’ll know they can trust me.

    • His_Space_Holiness

      Buy a large stuffed animal, cut off its head, and hang both the head and the bow on your wall. When someone asks about it, claim to be a big-game hunter and make up a story about how you bagged it, never for a second acknowledging that either is a toy.

  • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

    First on the agenda for this weekend is a game I just came across: Figure Out Why Driver Friendly’s Two Full-Length Albums Don’t Seem to Be Available for Sale Anywhere. Seriously, music retailers, I want to give you my money. Why won’t you let me?

    I think I might take another run at Mark of the Ninja this weekend. I dropped it out of boredom, but I’ve been told that it improves once you get into its groove.

    I’m also going to try to finish the Year of the Snake DLC for Sleeping Dogs. I must say, Wei Shen makes a much better asshole psycho cop than Cole Phelps. Police brutality has never been so much fun!

    • boardgameguy

      I thought Mark of the Ninja improved as it went along. Also, once you unlock some of the other costumes, you get new play styles that augment the game in fun ways.

      In many respects, newgame+ is way better than simple new game. Can’t think of too many other games that are like that.

  • rvb1023

    Darks Souls II Beta! Dark Souls II Beta!

    So I am going to probably play more Dragon’s Dogma.

    • CrabNaga

      I need to sign up for that damn beta. I keep forgetting.

      • Carlton_Hungus

        Invite only, although for this round I believe they posted the code on facebook, better hurry it’s limiteed to 30,000!

    • doyourealize

      Oh yeah, I forgot about this somehow. I, too, will be beta-ing Dark Souls 2.

    • Steve McCoy

      I got into the beta, but on the very day that I got the message, it seemed that somebody had already pirated my code and used it.

      • Carlton_Hungus

        That’s the limit being hit for that beta round, everyone they invite has the same key. I suffered that same painful fate in the first round of betas.

        • Steve McCoy

          You’re probably right. I got another code today and it worked this time!

    • JohnnyLongtorso

      I got into it, but found out that it’s in the middle of the fucking night. 2 to 5 AM? What the hell, From?

      • rvb1023

        Yeah, the timing is definitely weird. Found that out when I tried to get in and failed miserably.

        Like I said, more Dragon’s Dogma.

  • Enkidum

    I just started Limbo out of curiosity and general fucking-aroundedness, and it’s awesome. Was thinking it would be good to play with my kids, but might be a leeetle dark. So yeah, that. And Bloons TD5. And Amalur, probably.

    • Chum Joely

      Yeah, Limbo for kids, not a great idea. You will have already seen the spider, which is bad enough, but the puzzles with dead bodies as environmental objects, not to mention anything involving those dreadful buzzsaws… just too dark for kids. On the other hand, now you’ve got me thinking about trying another playthrough.

      Have you tried Unfinished Swan, though, as far as kid-compatible indie stuff? Very warm and cozy feel, with a moderate level of challenge but basically just a pretty and laid-back experience.

      • Enkidum

        Unfinished Swan is actually the first game we played through in its entirety together. I got through Ico with them watching most of it, and they’ve gotten through PvZ themselves with lots of help from me, but Unfinished Swan is the only one where we did the whole thing.

        We’re about halfway through Quantum Conundrum now, so there’s that. I just thought Limbo would be a sort of cute puzzler, and was completely taken by surprise by how frigging gleefully grim it is. I want to get those damn people who keep setting traps for me. They’re going to get impaled/crushed/on fire/something. I can feel it in my bones.

        • Chum Joely

          So is Quantum Conundrum any good? I picked it up for free on PS+ a long time ago, but never got around to it. I eventually deleted it from my hard drive because I was sick of being shocked by the super-loud theme song (“And then a flip a switch…”) blaring to life every time I surfed over its icon in the PS3 game selection menu. So in summary, I had no particularly solid reason for acquiring it or for deleting it. Your thoughts? 8^P

          • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

            Quantum Conundrum is somewhat underrated, I think. It suffered from comparisons to Kim Swift’s earlier game, Portal. On the surface, the two games are quite similar, consisting of a series of connected puzzle rooms, but they have very different design philosophies. Portal plays like one long tutorial, teaching you its mechanics bit by bit. On the other hand, Quantum Conundrum is more of a playground that encourages experimentation; it quickly teaches you its mechanics and then sets you free.

            The problem is that the mechanics aren’t as finely honed as they should be. Movement is hyper-sensitive, and it’s far too easy to run off a ledge when you’re just trying to get a better view. Even worse is the first-person platforming, which never feels precise. The end result is that you’ll sometimes know the solution to a problem but be unable to execute it, and that can cause immense frustration.

            Still, I recommend the game, because its puzzles are insanely clever, and it has a lot of charmingly wacky humour.

          • Enkidum

            I think it suffers from comparison to Portal because the general production values – especially the writing – aren’t quite as good, and because it doesn’t have the same “holy shit why didn’t I think of that first” feel to it that you got as soon as you realized what the game mechanic in Portal was (which in my case was a good 5 years before I played the game).

            It’s a fun game, and certainly worth playing, though. I’m not sure I’d agree with Merve, exactly, though, as there is very much a progression of “do this trick that you did last level plus one more” to a lot of the puzzles.

            So definitely worth the PS+ price, at any rate.

            And yeah, that song is annoying. I’m deleting it as soon as we finish for sure.

  • NakedSnake

    Ahhh, good times at GLOG. There’s been a lot of Pokemon hype on this site, and being the highly suggestible type, I figured I would check it out for the first time ever. I dunno guys… I’m getting kind of bored. I feel like the whole levelling up system is super opaque and thus hard to get into. And then all the choice between Pokemon is really bewildering, too. I’ve been trying to play games without using guide recently, but is that the only way to play Pokemon? No matter what I do I feel like I’m doing it wrong. And it should go without saying that I have zero interest in the plot of this kid trying to impress his professor.

    • NakedSnake

      Oh yea, and I guess I’m also playing Candy Box 2.

    • Drinking_with_Skeletons

      The leveling shouldn’t be opaque; each pokemon you defeat gives a certain amount of EXP, and with the EXP share any pokemon who was out during the fight with that pokemon gets full EXP and everyone else gets 1/2 EXP. Traded ‘mon get an additional (I think) 50% EXP, although I think they get more if they’re from another country.

      Having said that, there are a lot of other systems that are intentionally kind of obfuscated. There are plenty of pokemon that only evolve under very particular circumstances, and the only way to fully understand the EV system is to be an obsessive min-maxer who does a lot of research online. The series really does want you to be in the dark about things so that you can be genuinely surprised, and Dark Souls is about the only other game I can think of that is so committed to that idea.

      The plot is dull, but the problem with family-friendly material is that young kids are part of families, so they act as the lowest-common denominator.

      There is no wrong way to play the game. Pick the pokemon you like and use Super Training to boost the stats that do what you want. SP. ATK. affects Special moves (they are labeled with both the word and an icon that resembles a dartboard), ATK. affects Physical moves (labeled again, but with a little explosion-looking icon), and I think status-affecting moves (yin-yang symbol) aren’t modified by any stat. Speed determines which pokemon goes first, and I think you’ve now got enough to make fundamentally sound decisions about training. Pokemon Amie can be used to modify Critical Hit and Dodge rates (and maybe more; it definitely affects evolution for at least one pokemon), and pokemon that like you enough will give hints as to how well they might do in a match-up when you throw them out.

      TMs and HMs can be used repeatedly, and there are a whole bunch of them, so getting decent moves isn’t too hard if you poke around. HMs cannot be forgotten except from a specific NPC, however. There are also at least two NPCs in the game who will teach exceptionally powerful moves to pokemon, so talk to everyone you meet and barge into houses to find all of them.

      I would suggest learning at least some of the elemental weaknesses and strengths. There are so many pokemon and so many combinations these days that I can’t completely keep track of it, and it hasn’t been a huge problem. Just remember that pokemon inflict more damage with skills if the skill is of the same type as the pokemon.

      So having said ALL THAT, you still might not like the game. But at least you’ve got enough that you shouldn’t feel you’re playing incorrectly. :)

      • NakedSnake

        Thanks for the tips! Yea, I guess I just find the idea that I’m overlooking opportunities and game elements stressful. The moveset thing probably more than anything else. As far as I can tell, you can only have 4 moves at a time, and you only get one (1) chance to decide whether you want to keep or drop old moves you forgot or decided not to upgrade to. And then there are the elemental affinity things to worry about, and then the fact that I have no respect for boosts, but I get the impression they will be useful later (when the battles are more than a couple of rounds). Ack!

        But yea, I think I’m going to take your advice and just pick a bunch of guys I like and start leveling them and plow through the game. I know myself and I know that when I get this feeling with RPGs I need forward progress to keep my focus. I’m thinking Pikachu, Ralts, Chespin, some poodle guy I just got, and some water guy the prof got me. there any chance that I can do supertraining wrong? Like what if I level a bunch of normal attacks but their later evolution has a bunch of special attacks? Is there a finite amount of supertraining I can do?

        • Drinking_with_Skeletons

          I am most definitely not a good source for in-depth stuff, but I think that forgotten moves can be relearned with the help of an NPC and there’s also something to do with an item that can be farmed from heart-shaped fish you’ll be able to get with the Old Rod (I think they’re called Luvdiscs) that let’s you learn moves that an evolved pokemon could have learned but didn’t (more on that in a moment).

          There is a a limit to supertraining, though maxing out stats lets you grind it for rare items. It can also be undone, I believe, but I don’t know anything more than that; this gets into the EV system, which is super complicated and mostly there for the hardest of the hardcore. If you’re not sure about stats, don’t forget that you can breed pokemon (any non-legendary + a ditto will get you the non-ditto, though ditto isn’t available until the Pokemon Village) to get a lvl 1 pokemon and start from scratch. With EXP share and knowledge of Super Training, it isn’t as time consuming as you’d think to buff up a lvl 1 late in the game.

          A few more tips about evolution: unevolved pokemon learn skills at earlier levels than their upgraded forms, so if you can tolerate lower stats you can get better moves earlier without using TMs or HMs. I’m pretty sure there are some exceptions, though. Now, pokemon that evolve with the help of trading learn the same moves at the same levels, so if you want one of them (Alakazam is one of the best Psychics and has a Mega form, so it can be a good addition) you’ll want one as soon as possible. Not too hard to get them via GTS. Pokemon that evolve with stones stop learning new skills at all, so be careful about when you do that! The big exception there is Eevee, which can evolve into one of several very different forms and should be evolved as early as possible if you want one of them to fill a role on your team.

        • ZTO

          Drinking with Skeletons is right on for the re-learning moves part. This isn’t too important though since you typically get stronger and stronger moves as you go and are less likely to need to go back. Moves have a power number assigned to them that gets factored into the damage. In general, anything with about 70 power or better is worth keeping. Moves go up to about 150 but the higher the power, the more likely it is to have a terrible side effect (150 power moves often take 2 turns to use).
          As for super training, don’t worry about it unless you think it’s fun. Without getting too into it, just beating pokes in general will earn you EVs and will fully train your pokemon by itself. You will wind up really rounded, but you will almost always be higher level than your enemies so it hardly matters. It means a lot more for online battles since you are level capped 50 or 100 there. Evolution almost never (I can’t think of a counter example) switch the primary attack stat. So just check your stats and whichever is higher is probably the one you want to use.
          Breeding is fun but stupidly complicated. I would ignore it for now if you are not trying to min/max.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons

            Super-training isn’t very time consuming once you’ve figured it out, and maxing out stats lets you get items like evolutionary stones and more, so I wouldn’t necessarily discourage someone from doing it just because it’s not necessary. Yeah, don’t feel obliged to do it, but there are rewards even for someone who just tolerates it. Plus the training bags will speed things up regardless.

            And breeding is also useful if you want to nickname pokemon that you otherwise can only get through trade, so even a casual player may want to do it for that reason.

    • ZTO

      It’s probably wise to keep in mind that Pokemon carries a heavy nostalgia for some of us younger folks, so I knew I would enjoy the game simply because it was like the older ones. In general, don’t worry about training right or wrong and play the game for discovery. See a strange looking pokemon and wanna know what it might look like when it evolves? Then do that! Some pokemon are obviously worse than others, but none are useless (Let’s ignore Farfetch’d and Magicarp for now). As an obsessive min/maxer with this game, I know a lot about it but you really don’t NEED to know anything, besides a types table maybe. It’s hard to explain the appeal of the game besides make things that look cool and use them to bash other things, I guess.

      • NakedSnake

        Goddammit, farfetch’d was one of my guys! A tough-looking duck with a mysterious leek in his hand? What’s not to like?

        • ZTO

          Hah, poor Farfetch’d. He does get a special, Farfetch’d only item that pretty much doubles his stats but I would uhhh look into a replacement. The little fletchling birdy turns out to be pretty cool.

          • NakedSnake

            He’s also the only one I’ve seen so far that can use the item that brings pokemon down to 1 hp, so I keep him around for that reason.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons

            Honedge is awesome for that move, too.

            It’s worth saying–from a nostalgia point of view–that at least for singleplayer purposes the super training really helps ensure that any pokemon can be good. Go back to the earliest gens and you don’t get that. So don’t discount your Farfetch’d, at least for the campaign.

            Also: +1 on Fletchling. Motherfucker rocks pretty hard, and if not for Charizard I’d still be using him.

          • ocelotfox

            Honedge also has the coolest and most unique evo of the whole sixth generation: Aegislash. I won’t ruin the how or why, but suffice it to say, a unique ability and great stats make it truly amazing.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons

            I’ve got an Aegislash, and he is cool. What’s the unique ability? The stance change just seems to be cosmetic, and there doesn’t seem to be a way to switch back to the shielded version anyway once you attack.

          • ocelotfox

            Make sure he always keeps King’s Shield, which is maybe the best defensive move in the game. Basically, it always acts as priority, instantly switching Aegislash from Attack stance to Defensive stance and negating any physical attack or special attack. Moreover, if it’s a physical attack, the attacking Pokemon’s attack is sharply lowered. Also, with Stance Change, Aegislash swaps its attack and special attack with its defense and special defense stats, turning him from defensive great to offensive heavy just by issuing an attack. Basically, he’s a boss.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons

            I must have had him forget that move. How do you relearn moves again? I seem to remember meeting someone who would do that, but I don’t remember where.

          • NakedSnake

            Ah good, Fletching AKA Fawkes is one of my somewhat priority guys already. I’ll move him into the main roster.

          • ocelotfox

            Talonflame is probably the coolest early-encounter bird (other than Staraptor).

          • ZTO

            Staraptor is probably my favorite bird, given it’s ability to learn close combat. But Talonflame gets the amazing new ability in Gale Wings, which gives all of it’s flying moves +1 priority (so same priority tier as moves like mach punch).

          • ocelotfox

            So Brave Bird as a priority move?! That’s pretty awesome, though he’s still as vulnerable as Charizard to my least favorite move, Stealth Rock.

          • ZTO

            Yeah, priority roost, bravebird, tailwind, defog. It’s super good. But, because of that awful SR weakness, he plays best as a suicide lead. Pretty much guaranteed 2 attacks if you focus sash and if the lead is really unfavorable you can always priority tailwind and throw out something better next turn. I’ve already bred and ev trained a T-Flame for this. I can trade you one of the gale wing fletchling when I get home, if you’d like.

          • ocelotfox

            Absolutely, my Fletchinder I was raising has the rather pedestrian Flame Body, so I’d love to play with Galewing. I’m trying to setup a second team, since my main team is pretty well set (though it’s largely not for intense competitive play, since I still am learning a lot of the different strategies).

          • ZTO

            Okay, cool. I’m FC: 0490 5802 5339, if you haven’t already added me. Ziltoid is the name. I added everyone from the thread last week so I think I should have added you already. Just initiate a trade with me if you see me on. I have plenty, so that goes for anyone else who may be reading this and wants Gale Wing Talonflames.

          • ocelotfox

            Yeah, you already added me, my name’s Sky. I’ve down a fair bit of training and trading, so if you’re looking for a certain type of Pokemon (probably not Ability, haven’t started the breeding extravaganza), let me know.

  • Nudeviking

    Flailing around in my living room playing Skyward Sword.

    • Drinking_with_Skeletons

      What’s your opinion? I played that earlier this year and my opinion is very mixed.

      • TheInternetSaid

        I thought it was better than Twilight Princess, but missed the oddball anime charm of Wind Waker or Majora’s Mask. The world didn’t feel that “lived in”, probably a side effect of just having one town. But the Imprisoned was sort of scary in the dream, to the point where I thought you wouldn’t actually fight it, and the fights with him scaled up pretty well. I’m also a sucker for Metroid Prime mechanics, where you loop back to familiar territory to unlock new areas, which seemed to bother other people.

        • Drinking_with_Skeletons

          I’d have been fine with the backtracking if the areas hadn’t been so small (or maybe if there’d been more of them) or if there wasn’t so much mandatory backtracking. It felt like padding.

          I did not care for the upgrade system at all, as it was really something of a paper tiger. Having to decide whether to upgrade your bomb bag or slingshot sounds like a meaningful choice, but when you can get infinite refills from any bomb plant and the slingshot is useless (and this basically applies to every item in the game) you realize that the only worthwhile thing to upgrade is potions.

          The boss fights, however, were easily the series’ best. The caged one was stupid looking when it was moving around (it looked like a muppet) but I loved the fact that you could just jump of the cliff onto its head and skip the weakpoints entirely.

          Unfortunately, the combat was generally really mixed. The Wiimote is still not sensitive enough to really be 1:1, but the devs apparently think it is, so enemies shift around way too much to consistently land hits. That got really old even before I got to the cattle-prod goblins.

          Then you’ve got the horrible helper character (as boring as Navi but far more annoying), tedious bird flying (which might have been fun if the controls hadn’t been stupid even by motion control standards), and poor art (the game mostly looks unfinished rather than stylized).

          Very much my least favorite Zelda, and I’m not sure if I’ll ever be able to muster up the will to replay it.

      • Nudeviking

        I’m only like four or five hours in so far. I don’t like when I have to fly on that big ass bird because the controls are really weird. The other controls are decent (even if it makes me look like a goon). The dungeons are pretty decent, but I don’t like that (so far) I don’t seem to really be able to go wherever I want on a world map. So I guess that like you my opinion is kind of mixed.

  • alrighthearthis

    I plan to finish the last gym in Pokemon Y this weekend and take on the Elite 4. After that I’ll try to dive back into the Earth Dungeon on Wind Waker HD. I love Wind Waker but the Earth Dungeon was always my least favorite for some reason. Going to see if that changes after almost a decade since my last playthrough.

    • ocelotfox

      You might be surprised by just how easy the Elite 4 are, since they all have relatively moderate leveled Pokemon and only four a piece (except the Champion, who uses a full team).

  • http://www.avclub.com/users/ghaleonq,4597/ GhaleonQ

    MOON: REMIX R.P.G. ADVENTURE REQUEST:

    Hi, all. http://www.romhacking.net/forum/index.php?topic=13260.140 The best game ever has a fan translation in beta testing. I am switching jobs and co-running my video game soundtrack of the year contest. I’m stuck for time until January.

    Would anyone like to help out on it?

    Additionally, here is the most recent episode of Retronauts, which discusses it and their other games for a bit and which is the best history of fan-translations. http://www.retronauts.com/?p=403 Occasional Gameologian Bob Mackey hosts!
    On-topic, I’m running through The Guided Fate Paradox/The God And Fate Revolution Paradox in celebration of its English release. If you liked Z.H.P. or like dungeon-crawlers or tactics games at all, reward Nippon Ichi for being awesome recently.

    • http://www.gildedgreen.com/ Girard

      I am super excited about this news. If I had time to play ANY games right now, I would be so on top of this.

      As it is, time to plan lessons, prep materials, prepare for a couple of conference presentations, and plan how to actually get to that conference etc. etc. Blerg. Maybe someday I’ll either not have to work so much, OR I’ll work this much but at least get the opportunity to be paid for it…

      Maybe I’ll carve out a little time for DS Chibi Robo, though.

    • NakedSnake

      Not that I have all that much free time, but what exact help do you need? Inpit on a draft translation? Or translation help?

  • Zach_Annon

    I will be playing either Guild Wars 2 or Warlock: Master of the Arcane. Man, I was hoping I’d have more to say now that I’ve actually remembered to comment in here, instead of always just hanging out in the Gameological chat room inflicting my current gaming choices on everyone in there, especially as this is the last WAYPTW here, but there you have it. My only regret is rarely commenting on the site proper, a habit that, I must admit, is unlikely to change when we move back to AVC.

  • Spacemonkey Mafia

    God help me, Amalur has it’s dull, repetitious claws in me. I see now why the game opts for the bright, polychromatic world, because that rainbow enthusiasm isn’t found in the million 0 of 10 fetch quests you go on.
    But for all my kvetching, I must be enjoying it on some paleo level, becasue even now I’m thinking I’d like to play a bit. Must be the knives. Those things are fun.

    Some of you were kind enough to ask after my website last week. I finally have it up and if you’re so inclined, you can vist: nickwanserski.com.
    It’s not super elegant. Adobe Muse, my anxiety in getting it up and my chronic paint huffing have all worked to weaken the overall design principles.
    But there are half-orc paladins, so what the hell.

    • TheBryanJZX90

      I really hope you’re only playing Amalur because you’ve already played Dragon’s Dogma to completion, devouring every single morsel of gameplay from both the original release and expansion, right? Right?

      • Spacemonkey Mafia

        My promise to you -the second Dragon’s Dogma shows up on PS+ I will set aside Amalur and get cracking on it right away.

        • TheBryanJZX90

          It is right now! ….in the UK

        • TheBryanJZX90

          Hey, guess what? Dragon’s Dogma is available for free on PS+!

          • Spacemonkey Mafia

            Hah! I thought of this conversation the second the game was announced. I’ve downloaded it already and plan on checking it out this weekend.

    • CrabNaga

      Would you say that you’re on a kvetch quest?

      • Spacemonkey Mafia

        If there’s any justice in the world, you’ve just coined the nest Metroidvania.

    • Fluka

      Yaaaaay art! This is my constructive criticism.

    • a_scintillating_comment

      Really nice stuff! I think I’ll always have a soft spot for your KG Soupy contribution. Good luck on the job search.

    • NakedSnake

      Got some pretty great stuff here, especially the high fantasy/scifi stuff, which looks awesome. FWIW I used to work at World Learning, Inc. who it looks like you did some work for. Dunno if that would be any use to you, but let me know if so.

      • Spacemonkey Mafia

        Thanks very much. I never worked directly for World Learning and any work my previous company may have done with them was tangential to me. But I really appreciate the heads-up. If you want to talk about your experiences at all, please email me. I’m always happy to chat and I’m looking for pretty much anything right now.

        • NakedSnake

          Sure, I’ll e-mail you.

    • Enkidum

      I think I’ve found two broken quests, which is annoying. At least I’ve gotten to a stage where (on Hard difficulty) I don’t just win every fight in five seconds. Of course if I’ve got my Fate bar full I sure as hell do.

    • ProfFarnsworth

      Your art is amazing. Your website is also very well designed and very impressive.

      • Spacemonkey Mafia

        Thanks Professor! That means a lot to me.

  • http://caspiancomic.com/gametheory caspiancomic

    This weekend I’m continuing to play Pokemon Y. I’ve collected all 8 badges but I’m putting off facing the Elite Four, instead I’m tying up loose ends, exploring previously neglected areas, and leveling up a few johnnies to serve as a sort of B-Team. The A-Team that carried me through most of the latter half of the game consisted of a Greninja (Water/Dark), a Drifblim (Ghost/Flying), a Raichu (Electric), a Vileplume (Grass/Poison), a Charizard (Fire/Flying), and a Marowak (Ground). Right now I’m power-leveling a Hawlucha (Fighting/Flying), a Sigilyph (Psychic/Flying) and an Avalugg (Ice). Mostly I wanted to have more types available, and I also wanted to rely less on Gen 1 mons just for aesthetic reasons. I’m a little worried I’m being over-reliant on Flying types- my Fighting, Psychic, Ghost, and Fire types are all Flying sub-types, and my Marowak is not my strongest mon, so if I come up against any strong Electric types I’m going to get a serious whoopin’. Still, I can cross that bridge when I come to it. I should also probably whip up a few Dark, Dragon, Steel, and Fairy types in the interest of having as many bases covered as I can, but ehn, I’ve already got more mons that I can use on a single team, so I’ll just have to get creative if I come up against anything against which I’m type-disadvantaged.

    I’m so far really enjoying this one. I’ve mentioned before that typically I tend to be really hyped for new Pokemon games, love them to bits for the first two dozen hours or so, before hitting a difficulty brick wall and finding the final stages of the game a total slog. So far that hasn’t happened at all this time around. I’m about 40 hours into the game and still loving it, in fact one of the reasons I’m delaying facing the Elite Four is to soak up as much of the “main quest” content as I can before transitioning into post-game content (which I’ve historically had a more ambivalent relationship to.) There’s still a ton for me to explore and learn about this game, and for maybe the first time in the entire franchise, I’m still excited to keep playing. I’m glad my willpower failed me on this one, I almost didn’t buy it.

    • Drinking_with_Skeletons

      So does Greninja ever learn any Dark type moves? Or is there a TM that you’d recommend? I used a traded one (and then bred my own b/c I want nicknames for my guys) and while his stats are pretty awesome, at least on offense, he’s basically all Water, all the time.

      If you want a good ice type, I recommend Amaura. The Rock/Ice combo negates a bunch of weaknesses, though I think Ice must also be weak to Fighting because he gets one-hit KO’d by just about any decent fighting move. Note that it only levels up at night.

      Fairies don’t seem that amazing. I don’t know about Steel overall, but damned if Aegislash (evolves from Doublade with a dusk stone) isn’t crazy powerful. Don’t evolve until level 51, though.

      • ocelotfox

        Greninja only learns Night Slash, and can be taught Dark Pulse. I’d say Night Slash is the only marginally useful Dark-type attack to keep on him.

      • ZTO

        Greninja is strange and, like the other starters, seems to get badly neglected in secondary STAB (Same type attack bonus. 50% boost to attacks that share a type with the user). His hidden ability, Protean, is really cool though (switches your type to the last attack you used). Dark pulse is probably better since he is a stronger special attacker and it is all-around a stronger attack
        Amaura is neat but has a crazy number of weaknesses and not the speed to really be a theat. It’s 5 weaknesses (2 of them 4x) and only 4 resists make it pretty dicey. Mamoswine is probably a better choice if your going to nasty strong ice types. Though there is a certain swag factor in using a silly-looking ice dinosaur.
        Fairy and steel are both defensive types, which is why Aegislash is so good. Any strong steel types are very scary (Ferrothorn, scizor, etc.). Fairy is also a strong defensive type really made specifically to stop the over-powered dragons and fighting types in last generations high-end metagame. Put together fairy and steel, like Mawile, and you get a ridiculous 9 resistances, 2 immunities, and only 2 weaknesses.

        • Drinking_with_Skeletons

          I’m not much of a multiplayer fan, so thus far Amaura/Amaurus has been one of my most effective team members; I suspect that being able to use an Ice-Type Hyper Beam will make it devastating against any Elite 4 who use dragons. What are its weaknesses? The only one that stands out to me is Fighting.

          And could you explain Hidden Abilities? I’ve heard about them but I know nothing about how they work.

          • ocelotfox

            Amaura and its evo are weak to Grass (2x), Steel (4x), Fighting (4x), Ground (2x), Rock (2x), and Water (2x), due to its typing. So basically, it has way too many vulnerabilities to be super-useful.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons

            Really? I thought some of those were negated by the Rock/Ice combo (i.e. that they are neutrally effective).

          • ocelotfox

            Since both Ice and Rock are weak to Fighting and Steel, it has the 4x weakness there, whereas Ice does not mitigate the 2x weakness of Rock to Water, Grass, and Ground, and Rock does not mitigate Ice’s 2x weakness to Rock (haven’t seen this weakness in practice yet, but Pokemon DB says as much). There’s just way too many good Fighting and Steel-types out there to rely on Amaura, sadly.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons

            Man, that sucks. You’d think they’d be big on having types negate weaknesses since it would make unusual combos more appealing. Any way you cut it you’re still looking for pokemon with the fewest weaknesses and most strengths.

          • ZTO

            Kind of yes and kind of no. Amaurus is really held back by abysmal speed and bad defensive typing. If it were a fast, strong pokemon with that typing, it would be terrifying. It’s just not that good because it’s a slow bulky pokemon and those 4x weaknesses really negate it’s best, bulky stats. Rock is also normally a physical attacking type so it doesn’t have a great special attacking rock movepool, only really having Ancient Power. Lots of weaknesses is acceptable as long as you can out maneuver the things that want to kill you.

          • ZTO

            Hidden abilities are something from last gen. Every poke gained a new ability but it was only available from the dreamworld mini game or whatever. A lot of these abilities made otherwise bad pokes really good. In this gen, they can only be found via horde battles, in which there is a decent chance that one of the 5 will have a hidden ability, or from friend safari. Through normal means, every Greninja will have same ability, but one caught from a friend safari has a chance of having Protean instead.
            And yeah, Ocelotfox covers why it’s not considered very good for meta-game purposes. Also considering that both fighting and steel have priority attacks, he’s likely to die before even attacking. Of course, good in meta-game and fun to use are totally different. I play with a fully min/maxed Shuckle just because I think he’s silly and fun. Fear my 5 speed and 25 attack!

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons

            I really want to use an Anorith, just ’cause precambrian animals are inherently cool. I got one via trade, I just need to breed it and see if there are any halfway decent Bug TMs. Bug used to be absurdly shitty back in the day, but they seem viable for at least the campaign now.

            And yeah, my Aumaurus got torn up in the couple of battles I’ve tried (I’m really hoping that the matchmaking ends up working well enough that I play against people who really are around my ability so I can maybe win a little), but in singleplayer he’s goddamned fantastic.

          • ocelotfox

            There’s some pretty solid bug TMs. X-Scissor is the best physical attack, and the new Infestation is basically a Bug-type Fire Spin. Anorith’s evo, Armaldo, has high attack and defense but almost no speed (and he’s not able to learn Trick Room).

  • Derek_Noakes

    I’d imagine that I’ll rent Arkham Origins from my local shop tomorrow (yes, my city actually has a family owned brick and mortar rental place that somehow still thrives as all the Blockbusters around it have disappeared) and give it a try.

    I’ll probably play some Shadow of the Colossus and Hotline Miami as those were just made free on PSN over the last week. I also picked up an insanely cheap used copy of Bioshock Infinite during an anniversary sale at aforementioned brick and mortar store, so I may start on another round of that, too.

    • DrFlimFlam

      The sea change of the industry hurt Blockbuster, yes, but more than that was customer antipathy. Everyone HATED Blockbuster because of their old-school “you need us more than we need you” philosophy.

    • Carlton_Hungus

      I too will be playing Arkham Origins, I’m nervous with this one being the first not handled by Rocksteady. The first two are great atmospheric beat-em-ups, and the Riddler statues from Arkham City were just the right amount of frustrating fun collectibles.

      Other than that GTA Online and some Dark Souls II beta.

      And spackling and painting the Hungus family bedroom where shoddy contractors replaced some water damaged drywall.

      • Drinking_with_Skeletons

        Critical consensus seems to be it’s not as good as the others but is perfectly serviceable. Not the best possible outcome, but far from the worst.

        • Carlton_Hungus

          Yeah, reading some of the big site’s reviews now. Almost shocking to see Gamespot give a AAA release a 6, I thought they were graded on a 7-10 scale.

          I can live with more collecting and beat-em-up. The gameplay may be starting to get stale but it hasn’t hit that point yet for me, so I’ll be stringing together long combos and using the world’s greatest detective’s massive brainpower to solve riddles aimed for tweens this weekend.

      • Drinking_with_Skeletons

        UPDATE: Been playing Origins on my PS3, and I’d say it’s not bad, though it definitely falls short of AA and AC.

        1) So far, I’d say the writing and pacing may actually be better. A lot of people are complaining about the crime scene reproductions, which I’d compare to the Will Graham visions in Hannibal in absurd specificity, but if nothing else they really show Batman doing some actual investigation rather than being told by other characters to go do things.

        2) Not really an origin story for anyone, exactly, though it does feature well-designed, younger versions of several characters from the other games. Croc is a logical redesign considering his condition is supposed to be progressive, and he gets to show his stuff a bit more than he did in Asylum.

        3) On that note, the Riddler has been given a somewhat weird interpretation. I guess he started out as a kind of hacktivist guy using the name “Enigma?” Little out of left field based on every version of the character I’ve encountered.

        4) The controls feel a little off to me, though I can’t quite put my finger on it.

        5) Some new voice actors for Batman and another character. Batman is OK, and sort of comes across like Kevin Conroy doing a Christian Bale impersonation at times. Haven’s heard the other big replacement voice yet. Fans of the cartoon may notice a voice that sounds an awful lot like a supporting character from the show. Not sure if that’s who it was, though. You’ll know it when you hear it.

        6) They clearly recycled at least the entirety of Arkham City for the world map plus some. Fine, it’s supposed to be the same city, but…

        7) …Performance is pretty damned bad on the PS3! I played AC on both PS3 and PC, and the PS3 ran noticeably better, despite AA being superior on PC. So I pick up the PS3 version, and it often runs like shit! Even cutscenes can be jerky! I’ve heard that it may have something to do with fast travel, and hopefully it’ll be patched up. Not a dealbreaker, but if you’ve got the option, go with another version. I have heard that it may have something to do with the new fast travel system, but since you have to fast travel at least twice to progress the story… I guess you could exit to the menu and restart, I guess.

        8) Menus are really hard to read. Just a design issue, and probably indicates that they don’t have much experience with UI design.

        9) The developers’ goal seems to have been less “make a good action game” and more “make a Batman RPG.” They’ve tried to dial back his overpoweredness by using true skill trees, but really it just makes it hard to prioritize the skills you think will be useful. Oh, and some of the more powerful ones (like the sonic batarang) can only be unlocked by completing challenges.

        10) The overworld seems kind of barren compared to City, but there seem to be more indoor environments. Keep an eye out for easter eggs. If the menus are any indication, there are more sidequests as well. After about 3 or so hours of play I had only encountered 2 of the 8 assassins on Batman’s trail and had a lengthy showdown with a villain I didn’t even realize was going to be in the game.

        Make of all of that what you will!

        • Carlton_Hungus

          Excellent, excellent post all around have to say I agree with almost all of this. (Riddler’s name is Edward Nigma, thus Enigma).

          On 4, you’re definitely right, the controls are off compared to the last games. I was able to platinum trophy them both on the ps3, thus I was able to consistently put up 100+ combos late in the game and later challenge rooms. The controls here are just off, and have some inconsistencies, bodies sometimes just clip throug objects and break your combos. The timing is just enough off to mess up your rhythm compared to AA and AC.

          As to 7, I’ve had to restart at least 4 times because of game-breaking bugs, just batman being stuck in the map while I was just playing regularly. A mission point didn’t load for me at one point and I would just fall through the ground to my death (there was no object to hook onto since I was clipping through everything). Not to mention all the slowdowns you mention.

          Overall it’s just sloppy, this is the Chinese knockoff of the Hollywood movie. There are times when it’s working and you’re putting together a big combo or experiencing one of the great boss fights but there are too many times you ralize you’re playing the “coby” of batman games.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons

            After applying the update and avoiding fast travel (not too hard) I haven’t had any serious performance issues. I don’t know what the deal is with the controls, but it just isn’t quite as good; I agree that it seems like I’ve had a much harder time with the game than AA and AC, and I had chalked it up to the introduction of tougher enemies earlier (plus weird things like the martial artists). I know I’ve got to make much heavier use of combat gadgets, which were nearly optional in City. I think the predator sections are a lot tougher, too, though again I can’t pin down why.

            I knew about the E. Nigma thing (even prior to the Arkham games), I’ve just never encountered a version where he used that as a handle. I like that his scheme allows him to be as petty as he really is–it’s just blackmail, after all–while maintaining moral superiority. I don’t like the fact that he has no good reason to have scattered puzzles around the city.

            I still wouldn’t call it the Chinese knockoff version; I think it’s just been made by a company that doesn’t have the overall skill of Rocksteady. So far the writing has remained superior to the other games–I loved the intro of the Joker–and there are some clever new gadgets (I like the new zipline equivalent, in particular). I wouldn’t rank it as high as City, but I’m not unhappy to be playing it, and I think that this team could put out some really good stuff in the future if they bring their design skills up to snuff with their writing sensibilities.

          • Carlton_Hungus

            True, “chinese knockoff” was definitely a bit harsh considering how much fun I’ve been having playing the game. I think it may have been IGN’s review which used the old adage of comparing it to pizza, even when it’s bad it’s still pizza.

            None of the glitches I’ve encountered are game breaking, and reloading from the last checkpoint, or a occasion frame rate stutters aren’t the end of the world.

            I think the enemy attacks are just a hair faster from warning to attack, which throws off the timing just enough to break up a combo chain if you’re used to AA and AC, but that’s not necessarily bad, just different. I like the martial artists as a change of pace but they’re definitely tough to incorporate into the rhythm.

            I too think the writing and story are great. Even though they were ragged on I don’t mind the crime scene investigations. They’re not really puzzles but they’re still interesting. Is it just me or are there a lot more people dying than in the previous games?

            Overall I’m really enjoying the game, the chinese knockoff comparison was unfair. But it does seem like another month of testing or something could have worked out a few of the bugs.

          • Drinking_with_Skeletons

            About the corpses: (NARRATIVE CRITICISM INCOMING, SPOILERS AHEAD)

            If there’s one thing this game is, in fact, an “Origin” of, it is the Gotham City seen in Arkham Asylum and Arkham City. The game takes place long enough after Batman’s arrival for him to have had an effect, but not long enough for the criminal Old Guard to have been pushed out.

            Black Mask understands that the only way to encourage criminal behavior against someone creating a myth of unstoppable justice is to create a cult of criminal personality. He still maintains connections with the amazingly corrupt GCPD, however, and hasn’t yet suffered whatever accident will cause the mask to fuse to his face, so he’s not quite the full-blown crazy Gotham will see in the future.

            Penguin goes further with this, and within his hideout–flamboyant and non-secretive as a hideout can be–he’s established a wildly theatrical environment filled with violence and death. But it’s all part of the message to his troops: he kills people, and he will kill you, too, if you cross him. He then feeds into their petty little power fantasies through brutal cage fights, stoking their egos and bloodlust. It’s all self-contained, however; it has a purpose and, ugly as it is, there’s reason to it.

            Then we get the Joker. Batman enters a public building filled with corpses arranged festively. The Joker gasses people with lethal laughing toxins, kicks people out of windows, and shoots people for no real reason except he finds it amusing. He encourages the criminals of the city to just go nuts and start killing and looting. He rigs up staggering amounts of explosives beneath the streets. He’s unbound by any structure, not even the petty dictatorship of the Penguin, and so is as close to a parallel to Batman–lawless, violent vigilante that he is–as there is in the game. He’s the game changer, and when people complain about the ugliness of Arkham City, I think we can turn to Arkham Origins to say, “This is why.”

  • Electric Dragon

    I have to work on Sunday, but Saturday I will be playing Dishonoured. Doing a stealthy low chaos approach – but my attempt to go without killing anybody was ruined when I discovered after the end of a mission that one of the gently snoozing guards left in Corvo’s wake had become rat fodder later on (at least, I assume that’s what happened).

    • B to the Jay

      That is rough. I managed to get the no kill, no alert achievements on my first run, but it sure took a decent amount of reloading. Thankfully, not to the point of frustration. The game is nice in that it at least tells you your stats on that periodically, whereas a game like Deus Ex Human Revolution does not at all as I was massively disappointed to get neither the no kill nor no alarm achievements after beating it with the impression that I would. My best guess was that I knocked a guard out and he fell off the building to his death :-/

  • 2StoryOuthouse

    I wrapped up the Tomb Raider reboot a few days ago, a game I generally enjoyed for its creative and stylistic decisions even though a lot of the gameplay left me cold. Example A: Developing a great hunting/gathering survival mechanic and immediately ignoring it in favor of Uncharted-style 3rd person shoot ‘em ups. Example B: Laying all the groundwork for a fantastic final boss fight with a god made flesh and instead dispelling it with a cutscene.

    So this weekend it’ll be all gameplay with minimal story, as I’ll be returning to my long-running XCOM game now that I can have some fun with psionic abilitics.

    • Carlton_Hungus

      I enjoyed the reboot, but man, it really just felt like Uncharted 3.5. Ironic of course since many ragged on the original Uncharted as “Tomb Raider with a guy.” But it really was just a slightly more open world-y Uncharted.

  • hubrisofsatan

    I’ve started playing Dwarf Fortress. Tell my family I died doing something worthwhile.

    • DrZaloski

      Oh, it can be so hard to get back into, but when you do, it’s the point of no return. Been playing a bit of Prison Architect myself, it’s nice to play the more… user friendly DF-esc games. Looking into Spacebase 9 as well, but a little strapped on cash at this point.

  • Swadian Knight

    This weekend I’m sinking my teeth into Deus Ex: Human Revolution Director’s Cut, because I’m apparently the kind of sucker who’ll sink even more money into games they’ve already finished a half dozen times. It is very good, though.

    • DrFlimFlam

      I think Director’s Cut has pretty much guaranteed I wait for Game of the Year stuff from now on. It’s one thing to say, “Oh, yeah, we included all the DLC”, which is often content I’d never get into anyway. But to then also have tweaked the game…. well, boo on that.

    • DrZaloski

      I’m really excited to play it because I never got around to playing it, but I’m still super irked about the Wii U price. Squenix kicked Nintendo and Wii U so hard in the balls I’m still bitter about. I’ll probably cave before the holidays, but I keep on telling myself I’ll wait for a price drop.

  • CrankyKong

    I will be playing Final Fantasy XIV. I just hit the level cap, so I will be fighting Ifrit again. Not quite as fun as fighting Ifrit in Final Fantasy VIII, but what are you going to do?

    This reminds me that the beginning of Final Fantasy VIII was a test to set your initial rank, and that you had to take multiple choice tests to rank up. That is definitely the weirdest gil mechanic in one of these games ever.

    • Newton Gimmick

      Considering the overall uselessness of gil in FF8, it was a good time to experiment.

      • CrankyKong

        Gil is pretty useless in a lot of these games (or trivially easy to get). Sell one Mastered All Materia in FFVII and you had all the gold you could ever need.

    • ZTO

      I think I’m something like 0/30 on Ifrit weapon so good luck to you there.

  • Jackbert

    I’ll be playig Gone Home and see-if-Pokemon-gets-delivered-today-or-if-I-have-to-wait-until-Monday.

  • DrFlimFlam

    We picke dup Mario Kart 7 so while my son gathers coins for vehicle unlocks, I’ll be going up against the dastardly 150cc opposition to unlock new characters.

    Other than that, the usual suspects: FTL, Skyrim, Animal Crossing.

  • doyourealize

    All I really know about the new Pokemon is that my students are constantly ignoring me to play it during class. So that game sucks. At least it keeps them quiet I guess.

    I’ll be continuing my trek through Guild Wars 2. Level 66 right now and kind of looking forward to see what the end game’s like, and if it can keep me playing. Also, right now, I’m playing goddamn Candy Box 2. Thanks, Gameological.

  • Chum Joely

    I swear I am going to finish XCOM: Enemy Unknown this weekend. My team has managed to steal that psionic device from the aliens (the one with the weird purple sphere)– but not without heavy losses, of course (Col Ariane “Doomsday” Moffatt, I’ll miss you sorely). We are building the psi lab now, so pretty soon I should be ready to bring what’s left of my core squad back into the breach and (if recent missions are any indication) get my ass kicked for a while before finally managing to eke out a victory on my 3rd try.

    Also, we’re currently nominating games for the Gameological Game Revue Club, 7th ed., which will give participating Gameolos something to play next weekend. Lots of interesting nominees already, ranging from Dark Souls to Bientôt l’été by way of Papers Please, not to mention perennial runner-up Hotline Miami. Come check out the nominees and nominate a game of your own– the voting phase starts early next week, and we’ll be playing the selected game by next Friday!

  • dmikester

    No idea, since this week and the next couple of weeks are going to be crazy for me with almost certainly moving across the country for work. This weekend also features a big project I have to finish, so likely not a ton of videogame time.

    Still, almost certainly more GTA V and having fun trying to decipher all of the really weird things in the game, like the Mount Chiliad mural, the Infinite 8 killer riddle, and the Epsilon Tract. Also, speaking of deciphering, I may try to see if there’s any way to get an alternate ending in the unbelievable game/story Device 6, the next game from Simogo, the makers of Year Walk which was discussed at length here. I highly recommend it by the way; like Year Walk it really messes with the very nature of how you use the iPad/iPhone to play games, and the production values are tremendous. And finally, I might play through Gone Home with the developer commentary, though I’d guess that’s a thing for next week.

    • CrabNaga

      I did notice that there was one of those mural pictograms on the alien mural thing out in the desert. It seems to suggest that you should go there when it’s raining. There’s also one under the wooden platform at the summit of Mt Chiliad, but I’m not sure what it implies. There’s also one on the side of Mt Chiliad as you’re going up the cable car.

      I’ll probably be playing GTA Online more. It’s a bit saddening that most of the Gameologerinos have abandoned it already. I figure I’ll be playing it in some capacity for the foreseeable future.

      I’ll also try to finish my 100% run. One of the only things I have left is the horrible Epsilon project questline (which I am convinced they made to troll people going for 100%). Currently I have to wear some ugly sky blue robes for 10 cumulative in-game days (10 real-life hours), despite the fact that there isn’t much left for me to do. I assume that sleeping/hospital visits counts toward the time, so maybe I’ll just have Michael go into a coma for a while.

      • dmikester

        Well, there are hidden UFOs high in the sky both at Mount Chiliad and at the alien mural (well, the one at Mount Chiliad shows up at 3 AM during a storm when you’re at the summit, so not exactly high in the sky, but still). There’s also one above Fort Zancudo, and apparently, they all only appear after you’ve gotten 100%. The big thing people are trying to figure out is that mural at the higher cable station, which seems to suggest there’s both an alien egg and a jetpack somewhere. There’s so just much hidden stuff in the game. The Infinite 8 killer in a way is the most impressive to me, as it’s really detailed and you’re never given any kind of prompt to check it out.

      • Carlton_Hungus

        I used those days wearing the robe to collect all the collectibles, do all the stunt jumps, and under the bridges.

        But if you’ve already done that just go to your safehouse and sleep, that passes the in-game time. Do that for 5-10 minutes et voila, you’ve worn the robes for 10 days and lived like some cultist with mono.

        • CrabNaga

          Yeah, I have the stunt jumps left to do as well (and a handful of under the bridges and knife flights, but I have enough of them for 100% completion; I just want the achievement). What kind of sucks is that my Michael is poor as hell right now, so I can’t have him buy a good car to do the jumps. Plus I’d rather have Franklin do the jumps since his power is well-suited for it.

          • Carlton_Hungus

            Michael’s standard car should be good enough for most of them. The Bati 800 motorcycle should be good for the rest, it only costs $7,000 I believe. But yeah, definitely better to do the jumps with Franklin and his special move.

      • duwease

        The Epsilon quest doesn’t count towards 100%, just its own achievement/trophy. Although if you’re going for like me, the distinction is probably not really important :)

        The UFO thing is pretty nifty.. I stumbled across a sunken UFO while looking for nuclear waste off the coast and then Googled my way into an awful lot of speculation about the three UFO’s, and the weird ‘map’ in the tram station, and the notes on the special edition map if you view it under black light. Does the Moon Mobile have something to do with it??

        It’s either going to turn out to be a really awesome community puzzle easter egg hunt, or an epic troll by Rockstar. Either way, interesting.

      • signsofrain

        I had intended to stream some ‘Stanley Parable’ on twitch last night but then I started playing GTA V online and I didn’t get to bed until 3AM. I’m on the Gameological Crew (Tux) and I’ll also be playing pretty frequently for the next forever or so. Gonna make me some paper, buy me some proper-tay, so that when my friend can’t make it over to my house to enjoy some MJ in the basement we can at least chill in my GTA apartment and do it virtually.

  • stakkalee

    I’m getting together with my dad this weekend so limited gaming for me. I’ll probably still have time to play some Secret of the Silver Blades from the old SSI Gold Box series, and I may have time for GTA V on Sunday.

    • duwease

      Oh man, I haven’t played those since I devoured nearly every one whole about 15 years ago. I’m still bitter about the end of the Pool of Radiance series, and the stupid stupid STUPID thing you have to do to beat the last battle.

      How does it hold up? Thinking back, I imagine a decade and some change of game design improvements has rendered it a little bit of a slog, between the manual mapmaking and the constant drawn-out tactical random battles.

      • stakkalee

        They’ve actually held up pretty well. The graphics are crap, the turn-based combat can get a bit tedious, and you don’t get mouse support until the third game, but there’s a lot less hand-holding than in modern games; no arrows pointing you to your next quest objective, no oracle telling you who to kill. Some of the battles are VERY challenging (ie. a dozen restarts to make sure that red dragon doesn’t take out both your mages before they can cast) and the way they tell the story, directing you to read certain journal entries, feels very literary and choose-your-own-adventurey. There are some good, albeit generic, villains to fight and the storylines are complex enough. Overall I’m enjoying it, and not just for the nostalgia factor.

  • indy2003

    This weekend, I’ll be continuing to work my way through the special worlds of Super Mario 3D Land. Just finished up the fourth special world, and it remains a tough-but-fair experience. The level which has given me the most trouble thus far is the World 3 level with the blocks that come and go in time to the music – I must have died 30 times before I finally made it through. I’ve also been re-playing some of the regular levels in order to get more star coins, and it’s striking how much easier they seem after you’ve spent a good deal of time in the special worlds.

    I’ll also be continuing my slow-and-steady playthrough of Final Fantasy VII – about 15 hours into it right now and getting ready to leave Red XIII’s hometown.

    I’ll also be playing something on the PS3, though I haven’t decided what yet. Maybe I’ll finally start Portal 2? Just finished up Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, which was… kinda frustrating, in the end. I had initially planned to do all of the side quests and factions, but after discovering that the side quests were mostly rather bland fetch/kill quests and that quite a few of them were broken to varying degrees (including one which permanently disabled fast travel), I got fed up and just blazed through the main story (which was disappointingly generic). A lot to like about that game’s combat system and some of the mythology it offers (the Fae are pretty cool), but I couldn’t stomach the idea of giving it 200 hours of my life.

    • Newton Gimmick

      Is this your first time through FF7?
      *SPOILERPLATE*
      I always found the next bit of the game to be the toughest.

      • indy2003

        It is. So noted, though I will admit that most of it hasn’t really been too difficult thus far. I’ve only died a couple of times, and those were due to circumstances I could have avoided if I had been more cautious (I had neglected to give two of my three party members effective magicka during that elevator fight in which you could only use ranged attacks).

  • TreeRol

    Heading out to Friday Night Magic for the second week in a row. Last week was my first time, and I did my first draft, and I won the whole thing (going 6-0). It’s not that I’m very good – I tried drafting online this week and went a total of 1-5 – but the people who play at the store are pretty horrible. I’m hoping I don’t embarrass myself, so something like 3-3 would be fine by me.

    • ZTO

      Congrats on the 6-0 win! That’s impressive. What was your deck based around? I’m terrible in standard but I’m still interested in what the current strats are.

      • TreeRol

        Thanks! I have pretty much only played prereleases for the past 10 years or so, and so I never have had any cards to play Standard. I’m thinking of getting semi-seriously into the game, starting with drafts with the new set and maybe starting to play Standard in a year or so (when the Ravnica block rotates out and I’ll be mostly current).

        My draft deck was almost mono green, with about 5 black cards. The amount of pressure I could put on my opponents at mana cost 3-5 was pretty crazy, and with the removal I had in black I could keep the board clear enough to punch through with my army.

        I’ve heard White/Red is a monster deck in Theros, but I think it gets forced a little too often. I think Green/Black is a pretty solid strategy, as long as you can get some removal.

        • ZTO

          Stompy green with removal black sounds like it would be quite a problem as long as you aren’t choked for black mana. Glad to see that blue has moved out of the spotlight a little and made room for something other than incredibly annoying blue control decks. I hate you so, so much snapcaster mage.

          • TreeRol

            So I kind of drafted a blue control deck last night. Blue/Red with 6 bounce spells and 6 fliers, and 3 monstrosity creatures. Use fliers early to put pressure on, bounce to keep the board clear, and then drop bombs.

            I’m sure it was frustrating to play against. But people shouldn’t have passed me 3 Griptides.

          • ZTO

            That’s a pretty expensive topdeck but if you have the mana to bounce them and the fliers to keep them annoyed, I can see how it would be nice. Only thing that would slow something like that down is hexproof green reach and I don’t even know if there are any of them in this block.

          • TreeRol

            An opponent did have Reaper of the Wilds, which could become hexproof for a green mana. But he only ever had it with 1 green source (which he admitted was an error), so I could always bounce it the turn he cast it. If he ever got that to stick, it could’ve caused me big trouble. Well, at least, it could have clogged the ground, making fliers a requirement to win.

  • boardgameguy

    I hope to play some of Team Fortress 2′s Halloween stuff when that becomes available. Also, I should be receiving A Study in Emerald, Martin Wallace’s newest board game based on the story by Neil Gaiman that mixes Sherlock Holmes and Cthulu mythology. So if I get that, I’ll likely unbox and try to get some friends together for an initial run through.

  • Roswulf

    I’ve been sucked back into Crusader Kings II.

    I’m playing a fun Hungary game, now the semi-grand Carpathian Empire stuck between giant Byzantine and Holy Roman titans that could definitely squash me.. I’m loving the tension of keeping the great powers at bay, while still trying to build enough of a powerbase to fight off the ticking doomsday clock of the Golden Horde

    This game also featured my favorite single character I’ve ever played. Laszlo the Spectacular, the possessed Fraticelli Duke of Transylvania. He had great stats, genius, high-teens everywhere, 27 Martial. And he seized the throne of Hungary in bloody war against his cousin despite the fact that he was the electors’ of Hungary (and indeed his kingly cousin’s) chosen heir. That’s how charismatic Laszlo was- everyone wanted him to rule despite the whole crazy heretic thing. He did settle down eventually, re-embracing both Catholicism and sanity.

  • CaptOblivious

    I’m going to have a Super Hero weekend, toggling back and forth between Arkham Origins and Lego Marvel Super Heroes when my nephew is around (just as violent but for some reason the cartoony nature renders it ok by my sister-in-laws strange standards).

  • Basement Boy

    GTA V. I’m slooowly working through the story mode, and tend to spend many extra hours dicking around (just like real life!)

  • signsofrain

    Let’s see… tonight when I get home I’m definitely going to finish up the remaining routes I haven’t taken in The Stanley Parable. Then it’s time for a little watchin’ of Samurai Champloo then probably some GTA online and ZDoom deathmatch. Might do a Northern Exposure chaser… haven’t decided yet.

  • bostonrocco

    DC Universe Online. Damn my buddy to hell for him finally getting me to sign up. So damn addictive.

  • duwease

    I may or may not try to get another ending or two in The Stanley Protocol. It’s a game I got some chuckles out of, but ultimately I think after 8 paths or so the limited amount of takes on the central joke has worn thin.

    I also just got into the beta for Hearthstone, which I had forgotten I even applied for. Pretty fun so far, but I haven’t got in enough to see how deep the mechanics go. It’ll be nice to have a non-MTG CCG to play though.

    Finally, GTA V‘s iron-fisted grasp on my free time continues. The clock says 40 hours in, and I’ve still got plenty to do.. and that’s not even counting Online! Trevor just had a tearful goodbye with a nice old lady, and went hunting to blow off some steam. Meanwhile, Michael had to kill time while fulfilling the order to wear his cult robes for 10 days, so he took a tour of the star homes and browsed a big museum before wandering through its hedge maze. As much as some of the game design decisions, themes, and characters seem like grating relics of a bygone era, there’s not many other places in gaming where you can just jump in and screw around and still be constantly discovering new, weird little details and places 40 hours in.

    • http://disqus.com/Dikachu Dikachu

      I just finished GTA V for the second time earlier this week and am working on going and doing all the little side quests… some of them are pretty awesome and some of them are total fucking wastes of time. Even with knowing where every page of notes is, or every piece of the alien spacecraft is, or every toxic waste site is, it still takes forever.

      Last night I finally had enough cash to buy the golf resort as Michael. It was the first time I spent any actual time in there, so I walked around a bit, waving to the people. One stupid bitch then randomly called the cops, and they arrived within like 5 seconds, tearing through my nice green fairways and firing wildly at me. The moral of the story is, rich people are fucking assholes, and whoever programmed the police in GTA V needs to be disemboweled on live TV.

      • duwease

        The notes and the spaceship parts I don’t mind, because *usually* they cause me to explore some funky little corner of the map, which both increases my knowledge of the area (and my feel for its character), and lets me explore some neat little place they put a lot of effort into that I’d normally zoom past on a road at 90mph.

        The nuclear waste, though… F that. There’s a couple of neat little underwater areas (deep canyons, caves, wrecks).. but it’s mostly very, very dull and very, very slow.

        • http://disqus.com/Dikachu Dikachu

          Yeah, as cool as the underwater stuff is in theory, it’s a fucking pain in the ass in practice. It doesn’t help that the character and vehicle controls are even worse underwater than on land.

          I’ll probably do the notes and the spaceship parts specifically for the reasons you state, though. I’ve played through the game twice and there’s still areas I haven’t seen. Like last night I was running from the cops in Trevor’s truck and wound up driving up a hiking trail on the east side of the island during sunset and it was just stunningly gorgeous and serene. I found this little mountain lake and I wanted to just set up a campsite right there.

          • BillyNerdass

            Man, I know that exact lake you’re talking about. It siren songed me too. I was doing a Trevor flying mission and spotted it in the distance and really wanted to go see it up close after I finished the mission.

            I, of course, got a little too cocky in how I decided to make my way to the lake and ended up dying for stupid reasons 2 or 3 times before I got there. So it became pretty consuming. One of those I JUST NEED TO SEE THE LAKE IT IS IMPORTANT TO ME AND I NEED TO DO IT BECAUSE OF EMOTIONS things.

      • RJC

        I have been murdered by cops for bumping into people SO MANY TIMES. It’s by far the most realistic Black In America simulator on the market

  • Drinking_with_Skeletons

    I’m still working on Pokemon X, but I don’t know if I’ll be able to resist the siren call of not one but two Arkham games. Origins is getting decent reviews (it’s unsurprisingly a bit too much of a retread to really go toe-to-toe with its predecessors), while Blackgate is apparently a decent 2.5d Metroidvania.

  • snazzlenuts

    I’ll be playing Help My Brother-in-Law Move!! Always exciting.

  • Kyle O’Reilly

    Laptop hard drive went kaputt… wait for it… 6 days after the 1-year warranty ran out, so I’m currently adrift from my vast steam library and researching ways to install an SSD so this doesn’t happen again.

    luckily, I’ve been having a blast with Rainbow Six Vegas on 360, which I picked up for free not too long ago. It’s not the prettiest girl at the ball but it actuall requires some semblance of coordination and tactics. I also still like to pop in GTA V from time to time as I haven’t really listened to the talk radio stations all the way through and I still get a kick out of stealing cars and driving them dangerously while blowing stuff up. Haven’t touched and won’t touch GTA Online though.

    • a_scintillating_comment

      Sucks about the hard drive man. Hopefully you had backups

    • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

      I don’t think that SSDs are necessarily more reliable than old fashioned haddrives, though they are a heck of a lot faster. That might have changed or I could be wrong though. Stupid technology.

  • Drew Toal

    I’m hoping to play some NBA 2K 14. Trying to decide if it’s worth rebuilding a putrid Sixers team, or starting with a squad that has actual talent. Also waiting in joyful hope for XCOM: Enemy Within.

    • Drew Toal

      Also maybe playing Rogue Legacy since it’s out on Mac.

  • Fluka

    Heh, so we’re still WAYPTWing this week too, huh? That’s cool, that’s cool. *Crosses her arms, coughs, and looks around nervously.*

    Oh yeah, and I’m still playing Dragon Age: Origins this weekend. But this time I might finish it! Or, uh, I might not.

    *Keeps standing there awkwardly.*

    • a_scintillating_comment

      Still resisting the temptation to start another game myself. What are you playing as this time?

      • Fluka

        Female Dwarf Noble, two-handed warrior with Berserker/Templar specializations. The Dwarf Noble Origin is a good one! I’m still trending lawful good, as always, but I’m trying to make this my “Fuck you mages” playthrough. I am so sorry, Circle Tower. And Connor. And Morrigan. (My original game was Elf Mage; mages are still the best, but this one is fun too.)

        • ZTO

          I played a male dwarf berserker/reaver with every single stat point put into strength and as little as possible in magic or willpower. I pretended that he was too dumb to read or even speak clearly and would make irrationally violent decisions because he misunderstood everything. I will go ahead any say that consitution is overrated.
          Mages are the best, though.

          • Fluka

            That’s awesome. Word is that the new DA game might take stats into account like that as well, giving you dialogue options for certain attribute levels. Fallout was always good about letting you be an absolutely thick-headed thickie too.

          • ZTO

            Finally, my “Hodor: The RPG” dreams will become a reality. But really, my only gripe with that system in Bioware games (if I recall, KotR had a similar system) is that the attribute-specific options were always strictly better than the normal ones and often gave you additional benefits. I’d like to see it where I successfully intimidate soembody with my massive strength and extremely basic knowledge of verbal communication only to have the other party get me locked into a tougher encounter because she/he called the town guard or losing half of my money because they sue me.

        • a_scintillating_comment

          Yeah it’s tough to play the dick sometimes..well, I hope that was clear. Moving on.

          I’ve never done a ‘fuck you mages’ play through, but I did enact the rite of annulment or what’s it called on my last character. I’m not against mage oppression, but when I tried to really roleplay, and thought ‘whoa this situation is a little out of hand, and I’m kind of scared of it blowing up further’ I felt a bit better about my dark choice.

          • Fluka

            The problem with enacting the Rite is that Wynne up and up tries to kill you (unless that’s later?). And she can be an absurdly useful character. I managed to kill the mages just by not using the Litany of Adralla and then fighting the abominations. Then every other single mage was dead and the Templars said “Well, I guess that settles things” and Wynne was all :( .

          • a_scintillating_comment

            I’ll have to look into this route you’re suggesting. I didn’t even know that was an option. I never wanted to kill Wynne, but I had already chosen my path!

    • Newton Gimmick

      I’m planning on a Human Noble Rogue playthrough in the near future. I’m going to be a bit of a jerk, but mostly good.

      • Fluka

        Oo, that’s my plan too for the Mythical Third Playthrough (in a few years?). Except for the “mostly good” part. I’m gonna be the demon-loving assassin bastard who rules Fereldan!

        I still find it really hard to be an evil jerk in these games, though. I recently secretly sold out Morrigan to her dragon-mom. A few conversations later, she was apologizing for being a jerk, and thanking me for being one of her first true friends. I felt really, really bad.

  • DrFlimFlam

    Anyone else notice that Burial At Sea Part I is now slated for release November 12th? SO EXCITED.

  • Captain Internet

    I’ll be playing ‘Fly to New York with a suitcase full of treats for The Digest’, as that’s where I’m working for the next month. I seem to recall the Virgin Atlantic flights having some rudimentary games installed on the in-flight entertainment consoles, but I’m not holding my breath.

    My work computer is a MacBook, so if I do any gaming it’ll be drawn from the things I own on Steam that will run on it- plus doubtless a whole lot of Peggle whilst queueing to get into the damn country.

    • Citric

      Is Hamilton in the middle of the Atlantic on Virgin? Because it is on Air Canada.

  • Passe_Partout

    I enjoyed Arkham City enough that I went ahead and bought Arkham Origins. Aside from some weird loading problems, it feels like the same game which is the best I could’ve hoped for.

    I’m still flip-flopping about getting Pokemon. The biggest draw for me is the quicker leveling and 3D models. Can anyone who hasn’t really enjoyed a Pokemon since Gold/Silver recommend it?

    Other than that I’m going to be putting the finishing touches on my grad school application and give my worried mind a rest.

  • Em. P.

    Mass Effect 3 multiplayer – again. Seriously, I’ve earned all the challenges except solo and promotions, and yet I can’t. stop. playing. It’s very weird that it has it’s hooks so deep into me.

    • ZTO

      Are you playing on Xbox? If so, I might be up for a couple of games. I guess I play at a good-enough-for-gold level but don’t really have any high level ultra-rares to make me really stand out in platinum.

      • Em. P.

        Alas, no: I’m on PS3.

        With that said, here’s my manifest for anyone who might be interested. I’m mainly doing bronze and silvers lately because I’ve inexplicably decided to try to finish out the N7 mastery, but I’m generally down for some gold action too.

        http://social.bioware.com/n7hq/home/overview/?name=keris-42&platform=ps3

        Also, now I have Ziltoid the Omniscient running through my head, so thanks for that. :P

        • ZTO

          Foul! They hide their finest bean. Prepare to attack! And oh well. Too bad. But I agree there is a mysterious draw to that multiplayer, bugs an’ all.

      • http://disqus.com/Dikachu Dikachu

        ZIIIIIIILTOOOOOIIIIIIIDDD!!!!

        [metal scream]

        • ZTO

          All I want to be is the universe. Is that too much to ask?

  • LiberalCollegeFreshman

    I’ll be continuing my first playthrough of the GBA version of Final Fantasy VI. I’m currently on the Floating Continent, but I might take a teleport stone out of there just to level grind a bit and buy more items. I royally bunged the Ultros/Typhon fight on the ariship- I always select Templar for Gau’s Rage so he can do Fira, which made that specific battle really tedious.

  • mizerock

    Dungeons & Dragons on Sunday. We’re using the playtest rules, but will be switching over to Pathfinder after this quest ends.
    Later Sunday: Rock Band 3
    Scattered about, whenever feasible: GTA V (online and story), Rocksmith 2014.

  • TheInternetSaid

    AC: Revelations. I was up to around 80% on GTA IV and had to stop because it is such a fucking slog. It’s not really that fun to wander around and you feel like you should spend your free time going on dates or hanging out with friends (for no discernible reason). So I switched to Revelations (the only one I hadn’t played) to find out why Veronica Mars died and take a tour of Constantinople.

    Man, the ones before AC: 3 are like travel porn. The really should have set 3 in the Boxer Rebellion instead of Colonial Williamsburg. I mean, I know what a Pennsylvania farmhouse looks like.

  • Nabokov_Cocktail

    I just started playing Demon’s Souls this week and I am loving every frayed nerve second of it. I think I’m about to get my ass handed to me by a giant dragon, and I can’t wait!

    • ZTO

      BigRedDragon uses flamethrower. It’s super effective! Nabokov Cocktail fainted.
      Sorry, been playing too much ‘pokes.

    • Jesse Fuchs

      Me too: I picked up a used PS3, that, Dark Souls, and Spelunky, and have just been alternating between them when I start getting annoyed. :) I’ve been playing much more Demon’s Souls than Dark Souls, though; I can see why Dark Souls has become the more iconic one, but Demon’s Souls more straightforwardly hub-and-spoke structure has drawn me in more.

  • a_scintillating_comment

    Still working my way through GTA V’s story. And had this random urge to play Age of Empires 2, so I loaded that up and I’ve been trying to do the Joan of Arc campaign which I never did finish back when it came out. Probably more of that. It’s a much slower game than I remember.

  • His_Space_Holiness

    Seeing as how it’s Halloween season, I’m going to replay Silent Hill 2 and try to pick up all the little geegaws that unlock the crazier endings (walkthrough-assisted, naturally). After that, I just might start my long-prophesied second attempt at Dragon Age: Origins. One way or another, shit’s gonna get creepy.

    • RJC

      It’s hard to hear in the game but DO NOT LOOK UP WHAT THE GIRL IS SAYING BEFORE YOU GO SEE THE BROOD MOTHER

  • ProfFarnsworth

    I will be playing the game Study my brains out for my Classical Mechanics Exam. Hopefully, if I get enough done, and my family constraints allow for it Dragon Age II and Pokemon Y are going to be what I hope to play this weekend.

    • ZTO

      Love them classical mechanics! I presume this is the upper-level, paper-destroying, whiteboard-filling, stare-at-it-for-15-mins-before-even-attempting, Hamiltonian and Lagrangian style classical mechanics?

      • ProfFarnsworth

        Indeed. This is the Graduate level Classical Mechanics. My professor is also the type to post solutions that only take a page (where mine took 6 or 7 pages). Thus I am pretty screwed.

        • ZTO

          Ugh, I had a professor who did that too. “So by using this trick of symmetry and multiplying by some arbitary terms, you can make this very complicated equation take the form of this other, easier equation multiplied by another, easier equation. You can solve both of those at the time time by using another geometry trick and thats it!” To which I always though that yeah, it sure it easy to solve problems when you know the answer already.

  • Mercenary_Security_number_4

    I’ll be playing IRL: Skyrim Simulator. Also known as hiking mountain trails in the bitter cold. By choice. I’m a strange one, but the advantage of the real world is that I don’t have to worry about the system freezing up every time I enter a new area (then again, maybe it does and I just don’t remember it since time gets kicked back to the last autosave.)

  • DL

    Since Halloween is approaching, and I already played Gone Home this week, it’s time for me to make some more progress in Luigi’s Mansion 2. I guess I can’t get enough of lurking around dark, old houses. I should also read “Fall of the House of Usher”, while I’m at it.

  • BJ

    Wrapping up Metal Gear Rising Revengeance this weekend I hope. Hit 100% on GTAV last weekend and didn’t love the online portion, so I moved on to MGRR and am having a pretty good time with it. The parrying system took me much longer than it should to get used to it, but overall, after picking it up off the gamefly sale for $10, I’m quite pleased with it.

  • Alex Claxton

    Valkyria Chronicles. Picked it up about a year ago, loved it, played half of it and then grad school got in the way. Working hard on leveling everyone up to elites.

    • http://sarapen.ca/ Sarapen

      Awesome, I just got it a couple of weeks ago but I only tried it out yesterday. I’ve only gotten past the prologue and just arrived at headquarters but it already looks like it’s going to be fun. I do get the “this will suck up all your free time” vibes from it, though.

  • evanwaters

    Got The 7th Guest when it was on sale at GOG last, and have been fooling around with that. The chess-themed puzzles are really slipping me up- it’s interesting to see just what different kinds of thinking are required for these. Some of the more basic navigation elements are a little wonky, though- some movies replay and some don’t, and the ones that do replay in full no matter what so if you accidentally click on that space you’re stuck watching it all over again. Myst really managed to refine all that through the Hypercard interface.

    Have played a bunch of Mass Effect recently- gotta say this game’s really working for me just in evoking that classic space opera feel, and the mechanics are fun and, rare for a sci-fi game, actually based on exploration and problem solving rather than market simulation. I may or may not ever bother with the sequels, right now it’s too early to say.

    Also been fooling around with the Hallow’s End quests in WoW. Also an excuse to level up my undead mage (though there are never enough people in Brill to make the “put out the fires!” daily winnable.)

  • Kalabros

    Steam was selling Mass Effect 1 and 2 for 5 bucks, so I’m gonna give ‘em a shot for the first time ever and see what the fuss is all about.

    • ProfFarnsworth

      Mass Effect 1 is a good game, it is slow, and will take time to get used to but great. If you get frustrated, do not feel bad switching to Mass Effect 2. There is a DLC that allows you to make all the decisions in Mass Effect 1 and get all the story with out any major losses (apart from missing the fun of playing a good game).

      • HomageToCatatonia

        If you’re patient it’s worth sticking with 1, though, as the world building really sucks you in after a while.

  • djsubversive

    It probably goes without saying, but I’ll be spending time in the Arma 3 editor. Operation: Bring Tha Noise is still in the process of being turned into an Archer-themed mission. Lack of black tactilenecks for the ODIN soldiers is a problem, though. On the plus side, I can set a custom flag texture and then change it from the ODIN logo to the ISIS logo when the location is cleared of enemies. I also now move the respawn point to the most recently cleared location (no more trekking 2.5 km to get back to the mission! yay!). And a bunch of the civilian uniforms are still missing (priest, scientist, farmer, fisherman, and some others), so the hostage can’t be Dr. Krieger yet, but the hostage-rescue task IS working properly (well, from testing it in the editor).

    The other mission I’m working on has been getting more of my attention lately, the Panochori Heist (this is Altis, and Panochori is one of a few small towns in that southwestern area). I fixed my “respawn with default loadout” problem, so now the crew is properly heist-geared rather than soldier-geared. There are a number of optional ways to achieve the goal of $5,000 (I set up a variable called “crewMoney” and I basically have triggers that add to/subtract from the total) – last night I more than doubled the loot-cases and added another shopkeeper. I also dropped the size of police patrols down to 3 and added a few more cops with general “loiter” waypoints, which means they should just wander around the area somewhat randomly. There’s another police roadblock on another road leading out of Panochori. Some of the guys hanging out in houses are now OpFor, so they’ll be a little more hostile, at least to the cops (might change this back depending how it plays out after some testing). The delivery task now informs you how much you’ll get when you complete it. Entering the drug dealer house now drops the crew’s “captive” status (when a unit is “captive,” enemies won’t shoot – the AI crew members still shoot back, though, and gunfire from the crew drops the captive state). I also found out how to have the meet with your fence end in a firefight (because someone always betrays the heisters).

    Still to do: figure out exactly how to set the “fired weapon” eventHandler to recognize suppressed weapons AND/OR whether anyone is aware of the shooter (that last one would be very nice). Add more loot to Pano and Kavala (the town where the Delivery task ends). Possibly raise the goal from $5,000 to $10,000 (after adding more loot).

    You would think that the Heist mission would have player units named Wolf, Chains, Dallas, and Hoxton (the Payday Crew), but you’d be wrong. They’re Joe, Bobby, Pinky, and Jimmy from the movie Heist, with Gene Hackman and Danny DeVito. Jimmy instead of Fran because BIS still hasn’t added women to Arma 3.

    Also, last night, jarin (The Emperor of Awesome) and I got to talking about Jade Empire. Specifically, Sir Roderick Ponce Von Fontlebottom the Magnificent Bastard. We both decided that a replay of that game, “sometime,” would be good.

  • Jeffrey Abel Zwart

    I’m going to pick up ‘Betryal At House on Hill’ that I saw here earlier. Love me some tabletop gaming.

    • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

      Woo boardgames! The theme of BaHotH is really up my alley, but the gameplay doesn’t look like my kinda deal. Hope it goes over well for you!

  • rvb1023

    So my roommate happened to have a Kinect and we found Rise of Nightmares for $6 so we ended beating that in one night. Terrible controls and graphics aside, at a certain point you unlock a glove that lets you shoot magic that you charge by making a silly pose and there is something wonderful about that. Makes me feel as though a Kinect game design around performing the somatic components (Hell, even verbal) of spells might actually be entertaining. Tactile feedback isn’t required and it is surprising fun just flinging kamehamehas with your hands.

    And the glove’s name is Azoth, which is some pretty awesome shit.

    • Enkidum

      When you can get Fable Legends working it’s surprisingly fun, but the controls are wooonky.

  • ekells10

    I’ll be playing Rayman Legends, I pretty much beat the whole thing but keep going back for the daily challenges.
    I may finish up episode 4 of The Walking Dead, a certain something that happens after you get out of Crawford makes me not want to finish it, emotionally.
    Maybe I’ll get around to continuing The Witcher 2, I stopped playing during the assault on Vergen because I found that to be incredibly dull. But im sure if I get through it i’ll relove the game.

  • DrZaloski

    Monaco, actually. Really, really fun co-op, even when it’s just a mess online, and the single-player is just as good. It’s awesome to see a game that focuses on multiplayer and does NOT use that as an excuse to make a horrible single-player and then just yell “YOU’RE NOT PLAYING IT RIGHT” to anyone who dares prefer playing by themselves.

    Also, more Scrolls. Goddammit, I can’t stop. It took so much effort to get off Awesomenauts, now I’ve just fallen into Scrolls. I fear the day the new Blizzard MOBA drops.

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