Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."

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Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."

Postby Raxivace » Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:18 pm

Yeah I should have gotten to this a few weeks ago but oh well.

Anyways I've still been doing a ton of Resident Evil 2 runs over here. While I've most been playing the PC version lately, I've been messing around with mods a lot so for "real" runs I've been using the PS4 version. I've decided on going for the Platinum Trophy specifically to get hyped for RE3 and its been interesting.

First I did a "No Item Box" challenge and was neat. I did it on the easiest difficulty so it wasn't too hard or anything, though it does force to reconsider what you're actually picking up and when, and specifically how to easily get rid of Key Items and such. The Sewers in particular was hard here since having to juggle the damn chess pieces and the flamethrower and healing items to deal with the G-Embryos was kind of rough.

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^The Bottom Waterway (The Red area above in case the text is too small to read) is probably the hardest area in the game as a result. Its not too bad on the lowest difficulty, but I'm really dreading having to go through there eventually on my S-Rank Hardcore Mode runs for Leon and Claire (Actually I'm aiming for S+ so I can unlock their best weapons for the hell of it, but the Trophies are for only S-Ranking them).

The other two main runs to do are "No Healing" (Even on lowest difficulty I'm not quite sure how this is supposed to work) and "Beat the game in fewer than 14,000 steps" (There seems to be guides on this at least online at least).

I've also been trying the "Ghost Survivors" DLC and its bit rough. I'm not sure the more pure action-y approach in those quite works with RE2's mechanics, though there aren't too many scenarios to have to run at least. I've beaten Kendo's and Katherine's now, still have Ghost's and Daniel's to do.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #1

Postby Eva Yojimbo » Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:44 pm

I think you have more interest in these kinds of "challenges" than I do. I actually enjoy watching people on YouTube doing this stuff, but for whatever reason I don't enjoy them much personally. I will say that it's possible to get through the sewers without even tangling with any of the G-monsters (I thought the ones in the sewers were adults not embryos?). On my first run I kept getting killed by them and hated wasting all that ammo, so I started trying to just run past them and it's possible if you take the right path--though the last one you encounter on the way back seems more random and it's easy to get caught. I started on Ghost Survivors but gave up fast since I just didn't find it fun and I think you're right that it doesn't work real well with RE2's mechanics.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #2

Postby Raxivace » Fri Jan 17, 2020 3:18 pm

It's technically possible but I've found it difficult to consistently get past those guys without spending ammo/defense items or taking damage.

It's gonna be especially scary when one of the conditions for S+ Rank on Hardcore is "Beat the game with three or less saves". Can't even save scum past them that way!
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #3

Postby Raxivace » Tue Jan 21, 2020 5:42 am

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Well there's my S+ for Leon. Still have some Ghost Survivors bits to do, and then I need to work on S+ for Claire as well.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #4

Postby Gendo » Tue Jan 21, 2020 8:11 pm

Aw, Leon S. Kennedy... seeing that name makes me miss Jordan. (http://forum.pittersplace.com/memberlis ... ofile&u=72). For those who don't know Jordan was a regular member of IMDB and this site for a bit; went by the name of Leon Scott Kennedy. I knew his name came from a video game.

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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #5

Postby Raxivace » Wed Jan 22, 2020 2:53 am

Sounds like he must have been a fellow Resident Evil fan with a name like that, yeah. Shame he's no longer around, I would be curious to know what he thought of RE2 Remake.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #6

Postby Eva Yojimbo » Thu Jan 23, 2020 4:09 pm

^ Good job on the S+ man! I can't even imagine playing the game enough where I could do a run like that. Especially with survival horrors where the atmosphere tends to make me want to take more breaks than I do when playing lighter stuff.

Anyway, did finally continue Dark Souls last night. Manage to beat Bed of Chaos. I actually had mixed feelings about the boss. On the one hand, I actually liked the unique design in comparison with the other bosses. On my second try I figured out I probably had to take out those two glowing balls on the side before I could get to him--pretty standard video game logic. I actually didn't have too much trouble taking out the globes on my first try, even getting to the other one once the ground started caving in wasn't too much of a challenge... but then it took me like four tries to get to that center section. First time I got swatted into the holes, which felt like a really cheap death given that there's no real way to avoid those sweeping arms. Next two times I just plain missed the jump/fall onto the root. Really, the worst part was having to run that looooooong distance through the lava each time to get back to the boss. I can easily see how this could've frustrated some players to no end, especially if they hadn't figured out to take out the globes first and if they had trouble traversing the area from the first to the second.

Anyway, now that I'm done there, it seems all that's left is the last boss and the DLC. Which is better to do first?
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #7

Postby Raxivace » Thu Jan 23, 2020 4:48 pm

The DLC, since beating the last boss takes you straight into New Game+.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #8

Postby Gendo » Thu Jan 23, 2020 5:42 pm

A friend bought us The Touryst; so we started playing that (though we haven't finished Secret of Mana yet). Seems good and interesting so far. Mix of puzzle solving and platforming with a unique art style.

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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #9

Postby Raxivace » Thu Jan 23, 2020 7:39 pm

I'm on the last section of Ghost Survivors and good christ this is the worst part of the game by a large margin. Basically, you're stuck in the gas station convenience store from the beginning of the game and you have to kill 100 enemies. You have an infinite ammo pistol, which honestly kind of sucks because you're dealing with all of the DLC zombie types.

You just gets swarmed so easily and it feels like it comes down to RNG more than anything. It feels like its trying to recreate one of the defense sections from RE4, but man it just does not work in RE2 Remake (No roundhouse kicks and such to deal with swarms here), especially in the store area. Easily the worst part of this game.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:^ Good job on the S+ man! I can't even imagine playing the game enough where I could do a run like that. Especially with survival horrors where the atmosphere tends to make me want to take more breaks than I do when playing lighter stuff.
Thanks btw. Honestly I think most of it just comes down to learning the maps, having an actual plan with what you're going to do (What items to get and when, which guides online will help you do), an idea of how to improvise in case you run out of ammo or something (Mostly an issue in the first RPD visit through Birkin 1), and then just being able to kill enemies and bosses.

RPD First Visit through Birkin 1 is honestly the hardest part of the game, and if you can get through that and keep enough healing items to tank through Mr. X at the end, its not too bad.

Anyway, did finally continue Dark Souls last night. Manage to beat Bed of Chaos. I actually had mixed feelings about the boss. On the one hand, I actually liked the unique design in comparison with the other bosses. On my second try I figured out I probably had to take out those two glowing balls on the side before I could get to him--pretty standard video game logic. I actually didn't have too much trouble taking out the globes on my first try, even getting to the other one once the ground started caving in wasn't too much of a challenge... but then it took me like four tries to get to that center section. First time I got swatted into the holes, which felt like a really cheap death given that there's no real way to avoid those sweeping arms. Next two times I just plain missed the jump/fall onto the root. Really, the worst part was having to run that looooooong distance through the lava each time to get back to the boss. I can easily see how this could've frustrated some players to no end, especially if they hadn't figured out to take out the globes first and if they had trouble traversing the area from the first to the second.
That center section is the big problem. It often feels like you can get swiped trying to get to it for no reason.

Did you not find the bonfire in the lava area? It might be be behind a fake wall IIRC.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #10

Postby Raxivace » Thu Jan 23, 2020 7:42 pm

Gendo wrote:A friend bought us The Touryst; so we started playing that (though we haven't finished Secret of Mana yet). Seems good and interesting so far. Mix of puzzle solving and platforming with a unique art style.
Haven't heard of this one before. Looks very Lego-y.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #11

Postby Raxivace » Sun Jan 26, 2020 1:47 am

Still struggling on RE2: Ghost Survivors over here, which is saying something coming from me considering that S+ Rank of Leon's 2nd Run I just posted.

I think I'm getting close on No Way Out though. I'm starting to get around 80ish/100 enemies killed semi-consistently. The problem seems to be beating the first 30 or so enemies without using herbs or a stun grenade- that seems to be what screws me in the long run, not having the healing for the end rush.

Man I wish runs on this weren't so damn long though- it takes like 15-20 minutes to clear, and is just drawn out long enough that I usually lose toward the end.

In the meantime though I did go back and beat another game.

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Fire Emblem: Three Houses (2019) - When main protagonist Byleth was announced for Smash Bros., I previously mentioned that Three Houses was my most disappointing game of 2019 and by far my least favorite FE. Since making that comment though, I wondered if I was being too harsh on the game so I went back and picked up my file. Thankfully the game does pick up a bit where I left off, though there are some issues still.

I'm going to just copy a shortened version of Wikipedia's plot summary here because it explains the basic set-up better than I could.

Wikipedia wrote:Three Houses takes place on the continent of Fódlan. The landmass is divided into three rival nations who are now at peace: the Adrestian Empire to the south and west, the Holy Kingdom of Faerghus to the north, and the Leicester Alliance to the east. The Church of Seiros, based at Garreg Mach Monastery at the continent's center, is the region's dominant religion and is an influential power in Fódlan in its own right. In ancient history, a war raged between the Church's titular founder Seiros and the "King of Liberation" Nemesis, an era which also saw the establishment of the Empire by Seiros. In the thousand years since then, the Kingdom split away from the Empire, then the Alliance declared its independence from both powers. A prolonged conflict ensued, with the Church being responsible for keeping peace. The nobility of Fódlan frequently bear Crests, sigils passed down through families that grant magical powers. Bearing a crest greatly influences dynastic politics, with nobles inheriting Crests valued far above those who lack them. Those who have Crests can also wield powerful artifacts called Hero's Relics. The series's titular "Fire Emblem" appears as the "Crest of Flames", the Crest associated with the Progenitor God.

Players take on the role of the main character, called Byleth by default and who can be either male or female. A mercenary by trade, they become enrolled in the Officers Academy of Garreg Mach Monastery as a teacher. During their journey Byleth is aided by Sothis, a strange and initially-amnesiac girl who appears in their dreams and can only be heard by them. At Garreg Mach Monastery, Byleth chooses one of the three school houses, each aligned to a different nation of Fódlan. They are the Black Eagles led by Edelgard, imperial princess and heir to the Adrestian throne; the Blue Lions, commanded by Prince Dimitri of the Kingdom; and the Golden Deer led by Claude, heir to the Alliance's leading family. The Monastery's staff includes those who directly work for the Church, some of whom are recruitable by the player. Other characters include Jeralt, father of Byleth, and Rhea, archbishop of the Church.
IOW you're a teacher in a religious military academy during (And frankly its ridiculous that you even get this job, the opening of the game is you walking in for other reasons and then basically everyone tripping over themselves to employ you there. Your character is like, 21). The first half of the game is you having adventures as a teacher with the classes of the "Three Houses" of the title, and then the second half of the game is the Three Houses starting an actual war amongst each other that spans the continent. There are three different ways for this second half to go- each route of course depends on which House you choose to side with and actually lead to victory, as you kill off your former students of the other two Houses. I sided with the Black Eagles myself.

The first 25% or so of this game is honestly really tedious and the reason I initially dropped it. It's really easy on Normal (For the few battles there are in these opening hours), but more than that everything is just really drawn out. They take literal hours introducing everything to you and they really didn't need to.

You spend most of your time here not doing battles, but either in custcenes (Which doesn't bother me as a fan of Kojima games and visual novels and such) or running around the Garreg Mach Monastery.

The fucking Monastery. I despise the stupid ass Monastery. Everything wrong with this game comes back to it in some fashion.

Most of what you do here are either very annoying minigames or running around doing fetch quest chore bullshit. It is SO BORING, especially because the Monastery itself is just complicated enough that you have to actually pay attention to what you're doing here- even when you're using Fast Travel to skip around, NPC's can still be somewhat a way's off from where you actually teleport to.

It's not that any one run for an NPC is too long, but there's SO MANY that the game wants you to do that it adds up fast and gets real tedious real quick.

And the beginning hours of the game are a lot of doing this and not the Strategy RPG gameplay the Fire Emblem franchise is known for. The thing is too, you HAVE to do all this BS this IF you either want to recruit most of the new characters (Outside of the house you choose to side with anyways), or you just want to build up your relationships with the characters you do have which provides stat bonuses and such anyways (You can also build this up just by having characters fight next to each other during actual battles, though its much less efficient than hosting literal tea parties or dinner sessions and such). Or if you want to customize your characters outside of the basic roles they start in (Sort of like Jobs in Final Fantasy V, I guess).

You can technically skip this if you want to, but there is stuff you miss out on as a result. I missed some dumb sidequest in the first half of the game for example, but because I believed people when they told me "lol you can totally skip the Monastery exploration stuff" when it came to end of the game I wasn't able to have my Byleth. That's some BS, no other Fire Emblem ever made you do a damn sidequest just to get an S-Rank Marriage support. I wanted my Byleth to marry Edelgard, dammit!

Still, when I was skipping the Monastery nonsense, I was enjoying the game more. Even in the story though, the Monastery setting causes everything to feel very reactive. Its constantly random events being told to you (Things along the lines of, IDK, bandits invading a village or something), so you spend a calendar month "preparing" to set out (AKA doing Monastery chores that I mention), then riding out to deal with the problem, then returning to the Monastery to repeat the cycle.

Its a little better in the second half of the game once the actual war starts and you have an actual overarching goal you're building towards (I.e. win the war and kill the people that once looked up to, you monster), but you're still constantly returning to the Monastery even though it should like be partially destroyed.

Other Fire Emblem games seemed much better about this thing, since they didn't really have any kind of central location that the story revolved around, instead having you campaign throughout a continent or whatever and had your characters being relatively proactive. Much more forward momentum.

Still, its not all bad. The general premise here in Three Houses I think is good, and I liked a lot of the characters I actually had in the Black Eagles route. I just wish they had a better plot.

Also the actual strategy RPG gameplay is pretty simplistic. The map designs are really straightforward (Though you get the occasional gimmick to deal with), and on Normal Mode at least it was really easy to just steamroll the game by only focusing on raising up a few units. Even every character in the game being so heavily customizable is probably the reason, perhaps paradoxically, that the game is so straightforward since they have to account for any combination of characters and class types to finish this.

Older FE games had your characters restricted to preset classes with maybe some choice in what they could promote into once they leveled up, but I do feel like that lead to tighter game design, trickier maps to navigate etc.

Overall though Three Houses wasn't as bad as I thought, I still had fun with the characters and the basic gameplay, but man it really does feel like its ambitions hold it back. I think the strength of older Fire Emblem games is how streamlined they were and Three Houses is very much not that. That does mean you can spend potentially hundreds of hours on this but I was pretty satisfied with about 25 for the time being.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #12

Postby Raxivace » Sun Jan 26, 2020 1:54 am

OTOH what other game has you play as a college professor that murders their students? Can't say I've seen that before.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #13

Postby Raxivace » Wed Jan 29, 2020 12:59 am

I finally beat No Way Out in RE2 Ghost Survivors. That was fucking brutal.

Apparently there's an in-game achievement for clearing it while firing less than 60 handgun bullets and frankly I have no idea how that's possible without heavy RNG in your favor. I ended up having to fire 162 for comparison's sake.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #14

Postby Raxivace » Wed Jan 29, 2020 5:47 pm

Some last thoughts on the Ghost Survivors DLC.

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First of all, its weird that for a DLC who's thin story premise is "What if characters who died in the canon RE2 story actually survived and fought their way back to safety?" that they just didn't give Marvin a playable scenario since he was a fairly significant character. Part of me wonders if they're saving him for something in RE3 Remake since he has a cameo in the original game and based on trailers how the RPD is used in RE3 Remake's story looks like it could be radically different compared to the original. Still, even if that's the case it would have been nice to give Marvin something here in the DLC's, especially when you're giving stuff to non-characters like the mayor's daughter, Martinez (The "forgotten soldier"), or the freakin' sheriff that gets killed by the first zombie in the A scenarios. At least Kendo is a sensible pick.

Anyways in terms of gameplay yeah the scenarios are all kind of rough but I don't think the first three are too bad all things considered- it's still ultimately just getting from point a to point b, and I suppose the base game can be reduced down to that ultimately too. I don't think RE2's mechanics quite work with throwing so many enemies at you at once though, far more than the base game ever really did, but its clearable at least and quick enough. These scenarios are pretty similar to 4th Survivor and Tofu Survivor in the base game too, and while I have similar reservations about them you only need to play 4th Survivor for a Trophy if you care about that, though HUNK does become a recurring character in the series (He even writes several of the notes you find in Code: Veronica).

I will say the Ghost Survivors do feel harder to me than 4th Survivor did, though the first three scenarios in Ghost Survivors you can at least cheese through by playing on "Training" mode if you're only going for Trophies, since that mode give you more ammo and healing items and throw slightly less enemies at you.

It's No Way Out though that's bullshit, since its much longer than the other scenarios, much more RNG with how zombies react, you're trapped in a very confined location with the gas station convenience store (And you don't even get access to the backrooms or the outside area), there's no just running away from zombies to forget about them since the goal here is specifically to kill 100 of them, they throw all of the BS gimmick zombies from the other scenarios at you here (Even combining the poison and body armor zombies!!! Those guys will fuck your day up many a time trying to clear this mode), and for the Trophy you have to play on the legit difficulty mode unlike the rest of the DLC. It's just really, really hard to even clear. Part of me wonders if I can really ding the game for content that few people are going to even know exists since you do have to go well out of your way to unlock it (You have to clear the other three Ghost Survivors scenarios first), but man even for me who loves RE2 Remake to death and considers themselves decent at the game this was just rough in all the wrong ways. Ways that that the base game was so good for avoiding- in the base game success came down to mostly exploring and planning, not quite so much twitchy reflexes and RNG. Yes being able to actually kill zombies and bosses matters, but there was always a cushion for the player (Even when RNG was not rolling in your favor as an unlucky zombie took like 10 pistol headshots to put down) because you could always find extra ammo or a weapon upgrade or an herb. The crazy challenge was in speedrunning the game, testing how will you could execute a plan and adapt on the fly- the game is just consistent enough in enemy placement/reaction for this to be very very very viable while still keeping you on your toes.

In Ghost Survivors you're just so limited, especially on No Way Out. Even with healing item/weapon drops you get from downing enemies it still requires absurd precision to make use of considering just how much you're fighting, and you don't have the benefit of the strong melee systems of RE4/5/6 to help you break through hordes (In fact in those games guns were more for setting up cool roundhouse kicks and shit more than directly killing guys). There just is no real cushion here at all- perhaps appropriate for what amounts to a challenge mode, but a challenge mode for a different game than what the rest of RE2 is (Even the rest of the Ghost Survivors, since its not like you absolutely have to kill enemies in the other three scenarios).

I'd say only really spend time on this DLC if you're just really looking to milk absolutely everything you can out of RE2 Remake. I think its just way too tough to just plain clear for what it is (To say nothing of batshit absurd challenges like "Clear No Way Out firing less than 60 handgun bullets"), though I have to admit to feeling some satisfaction when I finally got through No Way Out myself.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #15

Postby Raxivace » Fri Jan 31, 2020 8:36 am

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I got frustrated with trying to get S+ as Claire, decided "Screw it" since you only need an S for the Trophy anyways, pulled out the Rocket Launcher I got from S+ing Leon, and called it a day. Zombies die MUCH faster with this thing, so the much lower time here really isn't impressive at all.

Problem with Claire B runs for me is that I just can't get a handle on her Quickdraw to save my life- its like trying to play as Revolver Ocelot or something. I think I might try and go back and get a proper S+ as her at some point, though it might be on the A run instead despite being longer.

At least I have Platinum now. Turns out its my 40th one overall, which is kind of neat.
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #16

Postby Raxivace » Mon Feb 03, 2020 10:16 pm

I'm playing the KH3 DLC and I'm really concerned because main villain is now voiced by Christopher Lloyd.

He was previously voiced by Rutger Hauer in the base game...who died shortly after KH3. Before him, he was voiced by Leonard Nimoy who passed a few years after voicing the character. Christopher Lee voiced a character who the main villain stole the identity of and he's gone too of course.

Billy Zane of all people voiced him at one point too but he seems to be doing alright.

I just hope Doc Brown is safe. :(
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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #17

Postby Raxivace » Thu Feb 06, 2020 1:23 am

Still not quite done with the KH3 DLC, but I finished another VN.

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Kagetsu Tohya (2001) - The sequel to Tsukihime. Sort of. In some ways its more of a sidestory similar to Tsukihime Plus-Disc I guess, but much longer than that.

The basic premise here is that our protagonist from the first game, ya boy Tohno Shiki, is BACK and he's kicking ass and taking names and in the first five minutes of the game he's hit by a truck on his way to school and falls into some sort of a coma. In his come he dreams he's caught in a time loop. And not just a time loop, but one where his memories are reset each iteration. Basically, this entire game is the player making Shiki make choices to not only realize he's in a loop/dream, but to then figure out how to escape (Being a Type-Moon game, there's more going on than just a coma of course).

Unfortunately that's easier said than done, because Kagetsu Tohya is the fuckin' Myst of these indie visual novels, and how laid back it initially seems is very deceptive. Because you have to guide Shiki indirectly, most of what actually happens in this game is slice-of-life stuff- think school club activities, going out to lunch and dinner, hanging out with his friends etc. What's kind of interesting is that the nature of the slice-of-life stuff is determinant by the player- one of the first choices in the game is causing Shiki to "remember" whether he has school or not today, and of course the loop changes to accommodate his decision.

The idea being that if you do decide to go to school and make the right choices, Shiki will hear a rumor about some guy with the same face as him roaming around town or something, and then at night you can actually track that guy down, get a knife fight with him, and sort of progress the plot by changing things slightly for the next loop. Eventually a guy gets beheaded. If you don't go to school though, there are a whole different set of events that Shiki can gain some information from.

There are a lot of choices like this, that make the game very, very complicated and involving a lot of guesswork if you're not using a guide.

Tsukihime itself was a pretty straight-forward game. There were five routes, but they were mostly straightforward and the choices mostly decided whether, say, you survived an attack from a bad guy or not. If you picked wrong, you just reload your save and make the opposite choice.

Kagetsu Tohya is not that, especially if you want 100% completion in the game.

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^Fucking look at this madness you have to follow if you want to get 100% completion in the game. Seriously, click the link and actually read this friggin thing because its so big I can't fit the full sized version onto Pitter's.

This shit makes Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest seem like a friendly guided experience. Dark Souls like a polite, encouraging pat on the back. Shenmue like a paid vacation day.

While there have been many other games that simulate the “trapped in a time loop” idea before and after this (The year before this The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask came out, and after Kagetsu Tohya you had other VN’s like the Infinity series, the Zero Escape trilogy etc.), none are as bullshit as Kagetsu Tohya is about it. In Kagetsu Tohya, there’s permanently missable content, once you "change" the loop its impossible to revert it and get any specific CG's or scenes you've missed. I’ve read online that the game can even be put into an unwinnable state this way- either way, despite the looping nature of the game you can end up having to delete your save data and start over if you’ve either missed out at your chance at 100% completion or if you’re game becomes unwinnable.

Luckily our best and brightest scientists and scholars have created a step by step guide to clearing the game, which was much easier to manage than the flowchart from hell. You have to follow it from the beginning though, in order. And I mean it, do it in order. If you don’t, that shit just flatout doesn’t work. I know because I thought I could scrape by using the guide after I did a few random runs on my own and I was fucking wrong. I ended up having to delete my save data and start over, because from what I could tell I just couldn’t get past one of the loops without Shiki getting murdered.

So just in a detached look Kagetsu Tohya is pretty complicated all things considered (There's at least an in-game hint system but it won't help you get 100% completion), but the actual writing is frankly a step down from Tsukihime in basically all aspects. The slice-of-life stuff that makes up the vast majority of this game is both just kind of boring and all of the characters are basically just caricatures of who they were in Tsukihime. Like Ciel was never the deepest character before or anything but she had more going on that just "lol I'm jealous girl who eats too much curry". Or Akiha being reduced to "Jealous little sister" and so on.

As you progress through the game you unlock separate little short stories in a section of the main menu called "Ten Nights of Dreams" that I think fare a little better. They don't have to accomodate for the open nature of the main game, so they can tell stories a little more straightly, though even some of those aren't quite effective. Flower of Thanatos specifically sticks out to me since it tries to reintroduce some of the more fucked up aspects of Shiki's character back into the story but it feels really out of place in a game that's mostly otherwise extremely light-hearted. A few others just take a while to really get going.

A couple of last things to note are that the CG's are generally of a higher quality than they were in Tsukihime, though unfortunately the English fan translation seems less professional. A lot of typos and missing words and such.

Ultimately I think Kagetsu Tohya is the kind of game that's more interesting to captial-t Theorize about than to actually play. The basic idea of working your way through a maze of Slice of Life shenanigans until you uncover the mysteries of what's really going on is interesting, but man the execution just isn't quite there for something this ambitious. I'm told Fate/hollow ataraxia uses a similar set-up but executes it much better, which has me curious about that game some more at least (Though I've been holding out on it anyways because I wanted to end my foray through the Type-Moon catalogue with the proper Fate/stay night sequel).

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BY THE WAY, speaking of Tsukihime, I forgot to mention in my review of that game that there's a remake in the works! A remake that was announced in 2008 and still isn't out yet. It has me curious because its same the basic people that made the original, but well 20+ years later at this point. The OG Tsukihime was pretty rough around the edges in a way modern Type-Moon stuff isn't, which has me very curious (Even without considering that the few promotional materials that have come out about it have shown off at least one new character and many seem to theorize that the fabled Sacchin route might actually be created in the remake). It could end up being a Man Who Knew Too Much '34 vs. '56 kind of situation.

Whenever Tsukihime Remake comes out, I wonder if they'll follow it up with a Kagetsu Tohya Remake...

EDIT: Thinking about it some more, in some ways Kagetsu Tohya reminds me more of Shenmue than I was giving it credit for, since it in a way they're both fairly open games about traveling through a lot of mundanity to find a darker underbelly of their settings. Biggest difference though is that Shenmue's mundane actually does feel mundane in an interesting way to me, whereas KT's mundanity is comedy that mostly doesn't land for me.
"[Cinema] is a labyrinth with a treacherous resemblance to reality." - Andrew Sarris

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Re: Rax/Maz/Jimbo 2020 Games Thread: "S.T.A.R.S...."   Reply #18

Postby Raxivace » Sun Feb 16, 2020 11:07 pm



Today I discovered the most powerful Dark Souls streamer of all time.
"[Cinema] is a labyrinth with a treacherous resemblance to reality." - Andrew Sarris


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