Once upon a time I made a blog about video games. And this is what's left of it (mostly tweets).

1 August

I finished in Heaven’s Vault in one ten-hour sitting, even though I hate most aspects of the game, because I’m a sucker for a good science-fantasy mystery. (It seemed good at the time, now I’m not so sure.)

Of course it would screw me over with a surprise point-of-no-return.

It’s just icing on the cake that the finale took place in a room with buggy transparent walls letting the whole outside world show through 👍

Started NG+ in Heaven’s Vault because I wanted to know more about the emperors and the robots. Got discouraged after two hours and decided to search for a wiki because it’s really too annoying to play. Ah, the one wiki is almost empty. Oh well.

Now of course I want to make a dead-language translation game, but I could never come up with something as visually compelling as Heaven’s Vault (without outright copying them). I guess I’ll have to look into Egyptian hieroglyphs.

I don’t mind that the dialogue isn’t actually interactive if it’s gonna be so fun. That is how you write an interactive story where the player character has a strong personality: by not asking the player what to say. (I’m amazed by how much work must have gone into Elsinore.)

Heaven’s Vault (PC) — 4/10

Elsinore (Mac) — 8/10

2 August

“What if we made Outer Wilds, but it only begins to be enjoyable if you have enough time and patience to replay a 20-hour game three times?”

Meanwhile I’m loving Elsinore, and Outer Wilds remains game of the year.

@tha_rami:

Ninja does thing

“Very smart sensible business decision cant find anything wrong in encouraging competition”

Developer does same thing

“Fuck this anticonsumer shit why do developers hate their audience”

5 August

I do not, in fact, enjoy being attacked by endless waves of giant lightsaber-wielding robots in VR.

Budget Cuts stresses me out but at least the game is interesting and well designed. Vader Immortal: Episode 1 has the same enemies dropping in the exact same two spots, replaying the exact same routine, for what feels like ten minutes, until I quit.

Oh—the Tilt Brush flashback was really nice, though. (Just like I loved the animated sequence in that Harry Potter movie.)

6 August

@JenovaChen:

Journey the older sister of Sky is out on iOS today! Thanks to ⁦⁦@A_i⁩ and ⁦@SonySantaMonica⁩, three thatgamecompany games are within my pocket ready to play at all time! [apps.apple.com]

8 August

Steam: An item from your wishlist is on sale!

Me: Uh why the fuck did I ever wishlist that game, though?

9 August

For the past few days I’ve been trying to figure out why obtaining The Book in Elsinore completely took the wind out of my sails. Maybe it lifted the immersion curtain by emphasizing “collect all endings” instead of a personal narrative? I haven’t felt like playing again since 😕

To be clear I thoroughly enjoyed all twelve hours I’ve spent in Elsinore, and will recommend it wholeheartedly to anyone with an interest in interactive fiction. I’m not even sure they did anything wrong — I’m just puzzled by my own reaction.

Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo 😭

12 August

I haven’t bought Eliza yet but I love this:

13 August

I need some assurance that if I close The Book in Heaven’s Vault the game will not start me over from the beginning. I wish I could trust implicitly that it won’t, but that isn’t the kind of relationship we have.

14 August

One of my favorite bits in Heaven’s Vault is (minor spoiler) when Aliya and Six end up in an ancient theater but neither of them has any concept of what that is.

Of course they had to screw it up on another moon 😒

I’ve just finished my second playthrough of Heaven’s Vault with new reasons to love the world-building, and new reasons to hate the game. I’m almost tempted to have a third go so I can dive deeper into the language, so I’ll hurry and uninstall it instead.

My biggest disappointment will remain in how many of the Ancient texts (especially in NG+) are eye-gougingly flagrant word-for-word translations from English. They look like they were written by people who have never seen a foreign language in their life.

@scinema_x:

Absolument personne :

Moi : Du coup j’ai développé une extension Chrome qui met la musique “Buy Mode” des Sims quand tu vas sur Amazon.

[chrome.google.com]

15 August

@quarkcannon:

We’ve been working on something super fun these past 18 months, here’s a glimpse of SPACE PIRATE ARENA! #vr #gamedev #madewithunity

HQ version on youtube: [youtube.com]

16 August

Exploring a planet in No Man’s Sky VR feels amazing. On the other hand my framerate tanks as soon as I get into my starship, and the flying controls are awful. Give me automatic fast travel on- and off-planet and I could spend hours upon hours just walking around.

17 August

@lizardengland:

So tonight in Sea of Thieves, I decided to end my night by picking up a special chest. It’s special because it’s rare, extremely valuable, and when you pick it up everyone can see it on the map and can hunt you down for it.

You know a nice, calm way to finish.

18 August

Magic: The Gathering Arena’s onboarding and tutorial are excellent. I don’t know that I have the courage to learn the intricacies of an entire 25-yo CCG but, hey, at least now I understand the basic rules of Magic.

So many clicks on the “Next stage” button, though 😣

19 August

20 August

Also, what kind of assholes are in charge of demoing the game?

Since last night I keep thinking about the Death Stranding: Mama video, and the likelihood of Kojima asking an animator to make Margaret Qualley grab her breasts after the fact.

I mean, it’s putting me off the game regardless of whether he made her do it live or added it in post, but one case is definitely worse than the other. (Though I’m not certain which.)

Erica (PS4) — 6/10

I bought Erica because the lead actress’s performance was clearly excellent in the trailer, but she is sadly not at all representative of the rest of the cast. The script doesn’t help (think direct-to-DVD teen paranormal thriller), nor does the 60fps video (wtf seriously?).

I was screaming bloody murder at the touch controls for the first 20 minutes, but they were used more sparingly afterwards. Still, the game would be just as enjoyable as a simple interactive movie — and those early scenes will dissuade me from replaying to uncover more story.

I knew what the risks were when Keighley was prodding the developer like “It’s not just Bandersnatch, right, it’s more interactive?” but, dammit, there should be nothing wrong with making an interactive movie. You can’t sell it more than $10 anyway, so spare yourself the trouble.

22 August

24 August

25 August

@ff00aa:

Damn this is cool. And how wild that the rear projection effects of the 1930s–50s are coming back with a vengeance [youtube.com]

26 August

Finally decided to play Death of the Outsider. I don’t remember the previous Dishonoreds giving me that much of a motion-sickness headache — but then I didn’t play those on a big-screen TV 😕

30 August

Well, good, now I’ve played Celeste for ten minutes and I’ll never start it again.

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