TES: Legends

TES: Legends finally gets its new-developer update! It might be playable now!

Update on Steam … update again because that update needed an update … binary not found. OK, look in the local files, it's renamed "app.app", which is stupid. Click, error.

status page:

Current Status: TES Legends is currently undergoing maintenance.

I mean, it's Bethesda, so I'm lucky it didn't clip thru the floor and fall out of the world.

Maybe tomorrow.

Nintendon't Fake NES Controllers

One of the few things I liked in the latest Nintendo Direct was "NES controller for Switch! Though there are good 3rd-party ones, but sweet."

Turns out this is a complete bullshit product: ArsTechnica says they only work with online, emulated NES. There's the Dick Nintendo I know and barely tolerate because they hate their players.

So, 8BitDo is still the best option.

Nintendo Direct

Nintendo Direct 2018-09-13

  • Luigi's Mansion: Eh. I liked the original some, largely the gag being the Wiimote was like a vacuum cleaner or Ghostbusters particle projector, but no interest in more.
  • Katamari Damacy HD: Neat, but just a remaster. How's that Final Fantasy VII remaster going, Squenix?
  • Nintendo Switch Online: Actually saving your game data between consoles?! From anyone else, this is 20-year-old tech. Nintendo has just discovered "using the cloud to not be dicks"!
  • NES controller for Switch! Though there are good 3rd-party ones, but sweet.
  • Diablo III, some other ports. Eh.
  • Town: Boring generic name for boring generic RPG, but it's NEW content. So, good for you!
  • Daemon x Machina: Maybe the worst-looking mecha game I've ever seen, like a reject from N64 suddenly revived for Switch.
  • Yoshi's Crafted World: Branded LittleBigPlanet ripoff.
  • Asmodeee boardgame mobile adaptations. Yawn.
  • Starlink: Is this the terrible Starfox game they previously canned, or a new one? I dunno. I loved Starfox64, but all since is disappointment.
  • The World Ends With You: Fuck yeah. As previously noted, I resent the iOS port ripoff, but I loved the game.
  • Team Sonic Racing: Arcade racers are a thing I love, but they showed a few seconds of gameplay. Who knows.
  • Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: How to turn your friends into bitter enemies, the videogame.
  • Final Fantasy XII, and more ports: Nice, sure, but I've got every one I care about on iOS or Playstation. STILL NO VII HD, SQUENIX! WAY TO RIP MY HEART OUT A SECOND TIME LIKE YA DID WITH AERIS, YA FUCKS! I'm fine, it's fine.
  • Smash: Don't care. Even with Isabelle. Enjoy getting face-wrecked by a fuzzy dog-girl, nerds.
  • Animal Crossing: 2019. Fuck! I've been done with Pocket Camp for months. Minimum 3 more months, and "2019" in Nintendo Time probably means Q3 or Q4. My body is ready NOW.

Five Games (and then some)

The following challenge/meme on Fediverse is interesting:

"If you had to recommend someone play 5 games to really get a feel for you/your tastes, what five would you pick?"

Videogames:

  1. Ultima II (1982)
  2. Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (1984)
  3. Alternate Reality: The City (Atari 800 version, 1985)
  4. Doom (1993)
  5. Elder Scrolls Online (2014)

Runners Up:

  1. Star Raiders (1979)
  2. Telengard (1982)
  3. Pitfall! (1982)
  4. Omega (1987)
  5. Llamatron (1992)

Tabletop:

  1. Dungeons & Dragons Basic Set (ed. Eric Holmes, 1977)
  2. Ogre (1977)
  3. Gamma World (1978)
  4. Tunnels & Trolls (4th-5th Ed, 1977-1979)
  5. Rolemaster (1980)

Runners Up:

  1. Star Fleet Battles (1979)
  2. Champions (1981)
  3. Stormbringer (1st Ed, accept no substitutes, 1981)
  4. Call of Cthulhu (1981)
  5. Kult (1993)

Why Even Make Software

Long week at the grindstone on the game, actual gameplay is mostly done, but a lot of the fine details of UI, animations, and music are janky or nonexistent: "the first 80% takes 100% of the schedule, the last 20% takes another 100%", as they say.

So I may take beta-testers and let them at it soon; comment/email if you'd like in. If you've played any of my games before, you know what you're getting, but much bigger:

Perilar: Fallen Kingdom, an entire world of Perilar, massive dungeons deep into the earth, towers up into the sky, hard tactical roguelike RPG. Mac/Windows/Linux.

I'm running late to think about marketing now, but: Should I Kickstarter for the final stretch? Set up a Patreon? Those feel like begging or grifting, even though I support some stuff that way. I prefer to release, try to get copies in front of the people who'd like it, collect money. Advertising used to be viable for user acquisition, now I suspect a large part of my potential audience are savvy enough to ad-block, and giant horrible things like EA drive the CPK up. There won't be ads or IAP in the game.

Apple killing the affiliate program could not come at a worse time. Kick all the little guys while we're down, Phil Schiller, that's what you're for.

And then there's always people who say "just release it as open source!", by which they mean I should starve and die in the street, and no software except command-line developer tools should ever be made. Yeah, that's not an acceptable business plan.

Shin Megami Tensei Liberation Dx2

Sweet, a new SMT game (not a Persona game, which are OK but not really my thing)! You are literally using your mobile phone to run a game where you use a mobile phone to run a game which lets you fight real (in the game?) demons that can only be seen with a mobile phone. … Look, man, I just play it I don't do sanity.

Like the classic SMT games, you start with Pixie and go out and recruit more demons by talking to them before fighting. Then you merge them together in blasphemous rituals to make more powerful demons.

Sadly there's no grid-by-grid dungeon crawl, just the usual mobage missions with a series of fights, and some story visual-novel stuff.

[UPDATE]: There is a dungeon crawl, you just have to unlock it after the first chapter of the story missions! The first one is very small, but I presume they'll get bigger and more complex. So it's a real SMT game after all!

I mostly like the style of this, and there seems to be hundreds of demons to summon and create. The music varies from rather good JPop to some of the most boring elevator music loops ever invented to drive humans to Black Friday rampages.

The one negative is the "Megakin" tour guide/"Pro Youtube Personality"/most annoying NPC in a game since Navi and Tingle from Zelda games. Holy shit I hate this guy, and I hate being forced to tap on buttons to fulfil a "tutorial". Just let me play and make my own mistakes, SEGA. The gun-crazed chick NPC partner is insane but amusing; who or what do you get if you're a female avatar?

My friend ID is EG93SHUH (Home screen, 👯 icon, Search tab)

Minecraft Aquatic Update

I've been playing with the many betas and pre-releases, and Mojang's software quality is… job NaN as usual. Each version would break something that worked before, add new completely unrelated bugs, as if (and in fact we know this to be the case) they don't have any tests, they don't even have a "feature", they just hack on the source at random whim until they feel like dumping it, and people report bugs and sometimes those get fixed.

Anyway, this "official release" is somewhat stable, but today's new bug is: My chicken farm dies out. I use water flows from the corners of a 5x5 pit to put all the chickens and their egg drops into a hopper in the center, but in this version baby chickens drown in even a thin stream of water, probably due to Mojang "fixing" zombies not sinking & becoming aqua zombies.

Press X to Review

Picked up Life is Strange freebie episode on Steam. Super aggravating controls: Almost no control over the camera, even less over the cursor: Find the off-target mouse circle, drag slowly to a command. Running is not always available, let alone default as it should be for playability. Most cutscenes can't be skipped. I don't know if I'd like the story or the game, because the first few areas drove me insane.

I've played and enjoyed a lot of walking simulators, like Proteus, Dear Esther, Gone Home (had to massively increase mouse sensitivity), and Connor Sherlock's games. These mostly use standard FPS WASD controls, mouse crosshair, and E to use.

And a lot of story games, like David Cage's Heavy Rain & Beyond Two Souls. Cage's games make heavy use of dual-stick controllers and "mash X now!" quick-time events, have minimal free will to go off the rails, but they aren't frustrating to play.

And physics toys, like Garry's Mod and Goat Simulator. These have dead standard FPS controls and total player freedom.

LiS is the first game in a long time I can't progress in.

Nintendo E3

  • Daemon Ex Machina: Looks like recycled material from the bad Starfox and non-Metroid "Metroid" mecha games. Dire.
  • Xenoblade Chronicles 2: Cartoony JRPG with pretty art, music, and numbers all over the screen: I love you. I barely remember the first Xenoblade Chronicles game (Wii?), but I'm up for it.
  • Pokémon Let's Go: I've never poked a man and never will, except briefly in Go. The physical Pokéball Plus is a cute idea.
  • Super Mario Party: Video shows way more ethnically integrated families and friends than entirely plausible. It's Mario Party, pointless but fun little minigames, it'll be fine. Everyone should have one.
  • Fire Emblem Three Houses: Pretty, seems like there's more story than usual between the tactical battles, and bigger armies? Cool, tho I expect like all FE games it'll get dull fast, they never learned to build pressure on the player.
  • Fortnite: The message of the novel (one of my favorites, along with the manga & movie) Battle Royale by Koushun Takami is that totalitarianism thrives on cruelty, people will do almost anything to each other to survive… but resistance and hope through sacrifice is possible. The central message of all these Battle Royale ripoff games is that it's fun to just murder your friends and classmates and reinforce totalitarianism. So, you know, I'm not a fan of this bullshit.
  • Overcooked 2, Killer Queen Black, Hollow Knight: Ports of indie games, the kind of things worth playing. Nice.
  • Long string of games, but I will call out The World Ends With You, which I loved on iOS until Squenix stopped supporting it, and Apple's moved the platform so often you can't rely on it to stay playable. If Squenix gives me back my $20 I'll buy the game again, Switch would be a really good platform for it.
  • Super Smash DoucheBros Ultimate DX GameCube Elite Pro for Smashing Faces: I have never cared less about a game franchise than Smash, and this I cared about less than usual. But I'm sure it's super exciting to Smashbros. Samus & Ridley Amiibo might be nice to have, as an old Metroid fanboy.

Have I missed it or did they say nothing about Animal Crossing for Switch?

Sony E3

Catching up:

  • Japanese instruments: Not exactly my thing, I prefer WagakkiBand, but classier than anything else we'll see here.
  • The Last of Us Part II: Laster of Us: Little girl (ignoring first game's plot choice to sacrifice her and save the world) goes on a mass murder spree after dancing with her girlfriend. No sign of the clicker zombies. Just a psychopath chopping people's necks open. What the actual fuck is wrong with you?
  • Ghost of Tsushima: Very lovely natural world and samurai. And then it's just used for a bunch more murders. You can't go play a flute and drink and fish in a river, the dialogue is very obviously scripted and choiceless. All this tech wasted making another fucking fighting game?
  • Control: While it seems to have a lot of fighting, there's maybe some puzzles with your amazing psycho powers?
  • Resident Evil 2: When there are no more good ideas in Hell, remakes will walk the Earth. But at least shootin' zombies is OK.
  • Trover Saves the Universe: Fuck yeah Justin Roiland and some kinda silly platformer! First time I've been interested in anything here.
  • Kingdom Hearts III: Pirates of the Caribbean WTF, is Jack Sparrow a Disney Prince(ss) now? Toy Story? Why not the Incredible Hulk and Deadpool, Squenix? The first one was weird, but this is so mashed together I don't even know what it is.
  • Death Stranding: Weirdest fucking thing ever gets weirder (but also more boring? Lot of walking scenes) in each video. What if there is no game, just increasingly fucked-up videos as an art project/troll? Hey, Lindsay Wagner (Bionic Woman), awesome!
  • Spider-Man: New York's shittiest hero gets to fight shitty villains like the Shocker (two fingers and thumb), looks like an exact ripoff of Batman Arkham Asylum. Super shitty skintight texture suit like a 2001-era low-poly game.
  • Dreams: Cute little VR-based toy, like LittleBigPlanet. Probably even more penises. Huge points for not being a murder simulator.