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K

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  1. The annoying thing is that the game is very simple but still somehow manages to explain itself very poorly. I got to the spider boss earlier, and after breezing through the preceding level, could barely touch the eight legged twat. I googled how to do it, and the guide recommended using an energy weapon and armour with fire resistance, and my immediate thought was that I hadn’t heard of either of those things, and had no idea how to get either. The game has these irritatingly slow to remove tutorial screens that explain things that don’t need explaining, and ignores stuff you need to understand to progress. I think I’m done with this. It looks great, but there are so many problems and so much faffing around that it’s starting to feel like a chore.
  2. Man, there are some annoying things in this game. If you kite an enemy too far from their starting location, they run back and effectively respawn there. Fine with random grunts, somewhat more annoying when we're talking about bosses who suddenly run off when their energy bar is 90% depleted, and respawn a few screens away with full health. This feels like it's just on the side of being worth continuing with, but it's a finely balanced thing. It's such a waste of potential; the shooting is absolutely brain-dead for the most part, and the loot aspect is undermined by the fact that there are about ten items of loot in total, with no variation between them at all. You can grind hard bosses or hard setpieces as you keep your XP when you die, but you have to backtrack for miles to find a vendor to level up in. But just occasionally, you get a really thrilling gunfight at just the right level of challenge.
  3. K

    Zool Remake

    Who knows, maybe it'll be good? It's not like there's anything really worth keeping in the original, so it's effectively a blank slate with a vague nineties vibe to it. These things sometimes turn out well - the PS4 remake of Shadow of the Beast was surprisingly good, I thought.
  4. K

    Zool Remake

    It says in the small print that it's developed by Sumo Digital Academy, which seems to be a kind of training / mentoring scheme for young game developers. A news story in the NME of all places gives a bit more info: https://www.nme.com/news/gaming-news/1990s-gaming-mascot-zool-to-return-in-zool-redimensioned-3010937 So it's being developed by the interns at Sumo Digital, with support from the original developers of Zool. Half the revenue from the game will go back into the academy to support more trainee devs. So while I'm not that enthused about a remake of Zool given that the original game had very little going for it other than being sponsored by a sweet company, this is actually quite an interesting prospect, and a good cause. I wonder what young devs, who were probably born well after Zool was released, would do with the game given that they're standing on the shoulders of 25+ years of game development since then.
  5. @Yasawas I have an Argon One case, where the whole thing acts as a heatsink - it's made of aluminium, and the case touches the processor so it conducts heat away and radiates it away through the entire casing. It's probably overkill - it gets mildly warm when I use it - and tbh I mainly use it because it also has a neat function where you can turn it on and off just by pressing a button on the case. Imagine that! An on/off button! Still, it's better than using an inline switch on the cable, or turning it off at the socket. Previously, I had one of those stick-on heatsinks, and a fan. I suspect it is a good idea to have one - my Pi3 ran quite hot without a heatsink, and the thermometer icon popped up a lot of the time. I haven't run the Pi4 without a heatsink or a fan, but I think it runs hotter than the Pi3, especially if you're emulating Dreamcast game. I would suggest asking on the Retropie forums, as they're quite helpful there (although that forum really is all business). I imagine there will be a lot of replies along the lines of "I've overclocked mine to 6 terahertz, and it runs fine in the tiny unventilated drawer I keep it in" / "I installed a PC GPU fan, and it burst into flames within ten seconds of turning it on" but between those extremes you'll probably get some helpful advice.
  6. I suspect that if you're aware of bugs or flaws in a game, then the dev team are almost certainly aware of them too (plus a load more you hadn't noticed). The game was developed by a small team, I would imagine they just didn't have the time to deal with all this on top of getting the game actually finished and released by their publisher's deadline.
  7. Weird that the penalties don't seem to affect quitters, they seem quite punitive from what I can see - 5 minutes for the first offence, and then escalating by 15 minutes for every subsequent one. Fifth offence gets you a three hour penalty, and the sixth gets you banned for 18hrs. I've never seen it happen because I tend not to quit out of games (and also don't play it very often, tbh), but they seem like quite harsh penalties. Regardless of whether or not players are warned, you would have thought that a player would get the message after the second ban.
  8. There are escalating penalties for quitting out of games in Halo: MCC, so I don’t see why they wouldn’t do something similar in Halo: Infinite
  9. Yes! This is so weird. I can't tell whether its a bug or whether its deliberate, but it sounds like a high-pitched whine, or those drill things F1 pit crews use to take the nuts off a tyre. It's incredibly annoying and distracting, it seems to play whenever you select a new item, and is an absolute brainfuck of a cacophony.
  10. The worst bit about the UI for me is that LB and RB move between tabs, and the left stick also moves between tabs. So if you bring up the map screen and try to move the cursor with the left stick, you suddenly and bewilderingly flick between different tabs. Or if you’re a few levels down in a nested menu (ie looking at you gear) and try to move back up a level by pressing left, you immediately switch to a different tab. It feels like each bit of the UI has a different flow to it, like each bit was made by a different person in isolation.
  11. The side quests are quite annoying. I did one before where the recommended level was 5; I was level 9, and even then kept getting one-shotted by enemies with a skull next to their health bar. I eventually managed to get through to the item I was supposed to retrieve, only to discover that I needed a more powerful cyberdeck to get into the room where it was stored, so couldn’t complete it.
  12. I’m really starting to dig this. It’s never going to win any prizes for sophistication, but it’s pretty good fun. The shooting is a bit scrappy, but I quite like the way you have to use cover and think about positioning (although it feels like they could have done a lot more with the mechanics). And it looks stunning, like a Citadel Miniatures diorama that goes on forever. The UI is absurdly bad, though. At least Flight Simulator has the excuse of being extremely complicated, as opposed this this, which somehow manages to make a twin stick shooter hard to understand.
  13. Regardless of the technical aspects, the maps in the test look pretty dull. They have the same mundane, utilitarian vibe that spoiled a lot of the Halo 5 maps for me - the aesthetic is usually UNSC water treatment plants, training camps, etc. It’s a shame, as the setting allows for some really striking locations, and the maps in Halo 4 (and the remastered maps in Halo:MCC) looked great.
  14. I read the three Halo novels that Greg Bear wrote, because I liked some of his books and wanted to see whether a “proper” SF writer could do anything interesting with the ideas and setting. Unsurprisingly, he couldn’t. I seem to remember the second book going off in a kind of body horror direction at one point that felt closer to the kind of books Bear writes on his own, which was by far the best part. The rest was an uneasy mixture of bits that were clearly Greg Bear’s own ideas that weren’t good enough to go into one of his books and 343’s own chaotic, confusing and uninteresting lore. It feels like Bear got given a mandate by 343 in terms of the plot and characters, and tried to fill in the gaps and make it work, but he clearly wasn’t giving it 100%, and at the end of the day he’s not that great a writer anyway. I recall at one point one character seems to split into two and clone himself for little apparent reason. I strongly suspect this was because the plot as it stood clashed with the backstory of the games and they couldn’t be bothered resolving it in a more elegant way, so they just created a copy of the character and had one do what he does in the game’s backstory and had another one do whatever he needed to do to drive the plot of the book. There are other weird details that I recall, like the flood infection originally starting out as a kind of mega-catnip for space cats, that initially made them more docile and friendly, and eventually developed into the flesh-devouring necrotic space hegemonising parasite swarms we know and love.
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