Gaming Blips

My gameplay has been pretty scattered over the past few weeks, but here’s a rundown of what I’ve been focusing on:

Just Cause 3

My lizard brain likes to see things explode. It’s a good thing, because that’s pretty much all Just Cause has going for it. Well, explosions and the immeasurable joy of gliding over (sometimes into) the gorgeous vistas of an island paradise with a wing suit.

It’s kind of amazing how instantly the mood changes when you go from incinerating every fuel tank in a tank to gliding quietly over a field of sunflowers in the span of 20 seconds.

I’m almost done with this one. Only two provinces left to liberate in all of Medici. The main story was almost totally forgettable, with a few entertaining characters but zero staying power. I just feel like finishing off liberating the nation, especially since beating the story rewards you with a super-effective bavarium-powered rocket launcher for maximum destruction.

I never expected a real engaging story from Just Cause, and my only real beef with the game is the upgrade system. The only way to upgrade your wing suit, get more grenades, increase your tether strength, or anything else is by completing themed challenges all around the map. These are all pretty boring. I’ve tried at least a few of all of them, but only progressed far down the wing suit tree because I love that thing. None of the upgrades are required for anything, so I’ve happily ignored most of the other challenges.

Final Fantasy VII

In the past, I’ve played Final Fantasy 4, 6, 8, 9, 10, 13, 13-2, and 14. That’s not bad. But I’ve never touched Final Fantasy 7. Well, they just released the updated PC version on PS4, and I couldn’t resist picking it up to see what I’ve been missing all these years.

I am SO grateful this version comes with the PC options for 3x game speed and no random encounters. The ATB crawls, so fast-through those grinding battles where I just mash the default attack is really helpful.

I like the story so far. I just visited the Golden Saucer for the first time, with its weird collection of mini games. The combat is fine, nothing special, but the materia system is pretty cool. Even though I like it I’m starting to lose momentum, mostly because now that I’ve started it I feel like I can only play one JRPG at a time and I really want to jump into Rogue Galaxy too.

Oh well. I think I’ll find my enthusiasm again when I can get a good marathon session in, it’s just been little chunks at a time lately.

Sunless Sea

When Fallen London first came out I was really into it. I barely understood how to do anything, or how any of the mechanics worked, but I was still really into it. Fallen London’s world is a weird fiction fan’s dream, and Sunless Sea takes that world and pairs it with an enthralling roguelike.

At least, I’m told it’s a roguelike – I haven’t died yet. I’ve been exploring the underground sea very carefully, avoiding contact with enemies and venturing from port to port, finding new mysteries at every one. I love how the stories unfold, gradually as you find new ports & the items or status to unlock further tales.

So far I’ve discovered:

  • An island where all the world’s lost mail turns up, and a terrifying, deep, dark hole in the mail office basement.
  • An envoy of Hell who just wanted to have tea with me.
  • A war between guinea pigs and rats.
  • A mysterious, frozen tower in the northern reaches.
  • And much more…

Take note: this is a game for readers. Most of the “action” you take part in involves, clicking through menus in ports, making choices, and reading about the consequences. You do control your ship manually when you sail around, but the combat encounters are very basic.

GUNS UP!

This one came out of nowhere. It’s an F2P PS4 title where you alternately build up a military base to protect, and send your troops to attack others. It’s an addictive gameplay loop, and you earn rewards and levels fairly quickly without paying for anything (though of course it’s faster if you do).

There’s a pretty wide selection of troops, plus a variety of different buff, debuff, and attack cards you can play during each battle. It’s also fun trying to optimize your defensive emplacements on your base and test your work against the AI. I’ve spent a decent chunk of time on this but I’m slowing down now. I’ll probably end up shooting for the platinum and dropping it after that.

That’s mostly what I’ve been up to lately. The two other games I’d like to spend more time with soon are Grim Dawn (just recently feature complete!) and FFXIV, which I haven’t touched since soon after Heavensward released. Time to get my ninja back into rotation.

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