The Alphabet Challenge

Pieta

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We're still working our way through Dawn of War II. Looks like dropping the difficulty to Normal was a good decision. On Hard, mission took a long time due to all the retreating, and we lost units frequently, both of which meant we got less XP, and also meant we never got extra deployments, which meant time passed faster, which meant Tyranids were growing stronger without us having much say in the matter...

Meanwhile on Normal, we're progressing at a faster pace, and there is much less pressure to get everything perfectly right, so we're actually experimenting with loadouts and squad composition; we're even using stuff I've never found much usage for when playing alone, like the plasma cannon (too fiddly to use when juggling four units solo, but in our game, it is the carnifex killer) or heavy flamer (it vaporizes infantry, and the fact that terminators also vaporize all the cover doesn't hurt so much in this case).
 

sizzle

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Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag - The worst part was having to do a tailing mission (ugh, the only missions worse than that are tailing+eavesdropping missions) with a fucking sailing ship (ugh) through a narrow swamp (are you fucking kidding me with this, guys?).
Oh, yeah, the swamp mission when you're helping Blackbeard? There are a few main story missions I really didn't like, and that one was definitely among them. It's a fun game, but the main mission design was iffy.
 

Dawgstar

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Now much to talk about for my 'D'. Dead by Daylight. I understand the appeal, but it's just not for me. I'm fine with the slasher villain aspect and all but it just feels kinda stiff. I don't really care for the graphics, either.
 

ESkemp

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Oh, yeah, the swamp mission when you're helping Blackbeard? There are a few main story missions I really didn't like, and that one was definitely among them. It's a fun game, but the main mission design was iffy.
This is basically true of almost every Assassin's Creed. I just 100%ed Origins, which was overall a gorgeous and delightful run, but absolutely the nadir was a couple of main story missions like a rail-shooter segment and the usual "fight, no stealth permitted, a boss with bullshit alien tech powers you have not been trained to deal with previously, and also he has quite the health bar" sequence that they like to challenge you with.

But no tailing/eavesdrop missions! That was nice.
 

sizzle

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So I beat Costume Quest; it took me 7 hours and I did almost everything. One treat quest I didn't finish because a second of one of the treats never dropped for me, and there were like two costumes I didn't finish and a few stamps I didn't buy. There's no in game completion percentage, but if one existed, I probably would have been at like 90 to 95%.

So, needless to say, I really liked it. It's very much my type of game. It reminds me of the recent South Park games in setting and mechanics, though a very different tone and style of humor (this game is much more PG, which is fine, it makes it quite charming). I liked the exploration, the writing, the nostalgia of being a kid on Halloween. My primary complaint, if I had to make one, is just that I would have liked it to be more fleshed out, as some of the systems and areas are a bit on the simple side. (I realize there's a separate epilogue that was added to the game post-release, that I could play, but coming post credits, that feels somewhat extraneous.) For instance, the combat system is fine, but it's a very simple version of old school JRPG combat; it worked well enough for the game, but wasn't a high point. Still, I very much enjoyed the game overall; I'll have to look into the sequel at some point, but for now...
 

sizzle

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So, moving on to D. While I've been playing these games as part of this challenge, I've also been playing stuff co-op with a friend. And in an odd coincidence that I've just noticed, all 3 games we've played this year have started with D. We beat the Destiny 2 campaign (started it last year), put 12 hours into Don't Starve Together, and now are playing Dungeon of the Endless, which we haven't beaten yet, but I expect we well. And this is coming off of several months of playing Diablo 3 again at the end of last year. So I was going to list out my D games and pick one to play, but on second thought, I think I have that letter covered.

OK, then, so E. Here are my options.

The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind: Game of the Year Edition (I'd be more inclined to list this under M, but it's easier to go with Steam's ordering... also, I borrowed the CD of this from a friend after he finished beating it sometime back in 2002 or 2003, played it for a weekend, wandering around and not getting very far, and then never touched it again; it'd be until Skyrim for a ES game to fully click with me, so the Steam version of Morrowind is unplayed by me)
Elite Dangerous
Endless Legend
Endless Space
The Escapists

So... a massive RPG, two 4xs, a space sim with no defined ending, and the Escapists. Well, if I want to get through something fast, the answer is pretty clear. Unfortunately, the Escapists is also the game of the 5 that I have the least interest in, so I'm contemplating if there's some way I can play one of the others. If time wasn't a factor, I'd probably give Morrowind a shot (after downloading some mods), but that seems like a good recipe for finishing this challenge in 2022.
 

Pieta

Very custom
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So, needless to say, I really liked it. It's very much my type of game. It reminds me of the recent South Park games in setting and mechanics, though a very different tone and style of humor (this game is much more PG, which is fine, it makes it quite charming). I liked the exploration, the writing, the nostalgia of being a kid on Halloween. My primary complaint, if I had to make one, is just that I would have liked it to be more fleshed out, as some of the systems and areas are a bit on the simple side. (I realize there's a separate epilogue that was added to the game post-release, that I could play, but coming post credits, that feels somewhat extraneous.) For instance, the combat system is fine, but it's a very simple version of old school JRPG combat; it worked well enough for the game, but wasn't a high point. Still, I very much enjoyed the game overall; I'll have to look into the sequel at some point, but for now...
The combat system is simple enough that my (then) six years old could make it through most of the fights. That was a positive for us, but might not work for everybody. :)

There's an expansion, Grubbins on Ice, which is as good as the original, and Costume Quest 2, which is even better, IMO.

Unfortunately, the Escapists is also the game of the 5 that I have the least interest in, so I'm contemplating if there's some way I can play one of the others. If time wasn't a factor, I'd probably give Morrowind a shot (after downloading some mods), but that seems like a good recipe for finishing this challenge in 2022.
For what it's worth, I gave The Escapists 2 a try, and thought it became repetitive very fast. I have *checks Steam* 4 hours played, and didn't feel like playing anymore.
 

evilmrhenry

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So, moving on to D. While I've been playing these games as part of this challenge, I've also been playing stuff co-op with a friend. And in an odd coincidence that I've just noticed, all 3 games we've played this year have started with D. We beat the Destiny 2 campaign (started it last year), put 12 hours into Don't Starve Together, and now are playing Dungeon of the Endless, which we haven't beaten yet, but I expect we well. And this is coming off of several months of playing Diablo 3 again at the end of last year. So I was going to list out my D games and pick one to play, but on second thought, I think I have that letter covered.

OK, then, so E. Here are my options.

The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind: Game of the Year Edition (I'd be more inclined to list this under M, but it's easier to go with Steam's ordering... also, I borrowed the CD of this from a friend after he finished beating it sometime back in 2002 or 2003, played it for a weekend, wandering around and not getting very far, and then never touched it again; it'd be until Skyrim for a ES game to fully click with me, so the Steam version of Morrowind is unplayed by me)
Elite Dangerous
Endless Legend
Endless Space
The Escapists

So... a massive RPG, two 4xs, a space sim with no defined ending, and the Escapists. Well, if I want to get through something fast, the answer is pretty clear. Unfortunately, the Escapists is also the game of the 5 that I have the least interest in, so I'm contemplating if there's some way I can play one of the others. If time wasn't a factor, I'd probably give Morrowind a shot (after downloading some mods), but that seems like a good recipe for finishing this challenge in 2022.
I have an extra copy of "Earthworms", if that sounds interesting. (Point-n-click adventure.) Haven't played it, but it seems to be reasonably good and short.
You also might have one of the Ecco the Dolphin games, filed under "Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Games".
 

ESkemp

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And that's Memoria finished. I wound up enjoying the story rather well -- it wasn't one of the great video game epics ever, but it was intriguing enough and did some interesting things with fairy tale logic. I did resort to some walkthroughs at a few points. Ultimately, I'm not the world's best at the classic "use two unrelated objects together and hunt for a place to apply them" style of game, and many of the most famous examples of that genre probably are aimed at people who play in the genre more often and therefore are used to the logic required. But the logic did feel logical, you could call out hotspots, and there was mercifully not a whole lot of puzzles that expected you to backtrack through previously visited areas. I do have the previous game (The Dark Eye: Chains of Satinav) in my Steam library, so at some point in the future maybe I'll go spend some more time in that world.

Anyhow, the Alphabet Challenge rolls on. Now, when I originally planned this challenge I picked the games I was going to try genuinely finishing ahead of time. That hit a setback with Magicka, which is why Memoria stepped in as the actual representative of M. I also didn't set a time limit of a year or anything -- obviously, since I got A-J finished last year. So right now I could try to pick something else short: maybe Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna), maybe Northmark: Hour of the Wolf.

But -- and this may be a mistake -- I picked a more traditional RPG for my N slot, and I'm inclined to persevere: Neverwinter Nights 2: Platinum. It could take a while. It's not my favorite D&D ruleset, particularly because I will almost always pick a martial character over a spellcaster. I'm probably going to make a terrible mistake and play a character with a level adjustment penalty because yuan-ti pureblood is an option and that seems far more interesting than anything else. But if it's anything like the original Neverwinter Nights, a little suboptimal mechanics can be fought with a generous attitude toward save-scumming, and eh, I'm not against it.

Edit: Oof, and it's real-time-with-pause combat. Just about the worst. Let's see whether this is worth persevering...
 
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sizzle

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Validated User
I have an extra copy of "Earthworms", if that sounds interesting. (Point-n-click adventure.) Haven't played it, but it seems to be reasonably good and short.
You also might have one of the Ecco the Dolphin games, filed under "Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Games".
Thanks for the offer of the game, but I'm not much of a fan of point and click adventures. Also, the only game in that Sega collection I own is Golden Axe (possibly a candidate when I get to G, I suppose).

Anyway, I've decided to throw common sense to the wind (heh) and go with Morrowind, as I couldn't shake the thought of playing that. We'll see how it goes. If it takes me way too much time maybe I'll just declare victory and move on, but it's the game I most want to play by a fair amount, and this challenge should be fun, so...
 
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