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25, Cis Male, Autistic | Mainly plays stuff I'm actually interested in | List of favorites

Scrapped my star ratings, as it felt very limiting to categorize games under, especially ones I have complex feelings over. Mainly using this site mainly for logging/reviewing purposes nowadays, with interactions mainly being amongst friends and acquaintances.
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Favorite Games

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II - The Sith Lords
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II - The Sith Lords
Halo 3
Halo 3

858

Total Games Played

010

Played in 2024

3944

Games Backloggd


Recently Played See More

Fortnite: Chapter 5 - Season 2: Myths & Mortals
Fortnite: Chapter 5 - Season 2: Myths & Mortals

May 23

Persona 5 Royal
Persona 5 Royal

Apr 27

Organic Growth
Organic Growth

Apr 26

Meyni
Meyni

Apr 26

5-Step Steve

Mar 23

Recently Reviewed See More

List of mods I used available on my pastebin post here. I should also note that “Mastered” in my case means getting all the achievements, leaving out a handful of Thieves Den Awards that become active or otherwise easier to nab in NG+.

For an RPG I heavily played well over a month, fresh and pampered from revisiting Persona 3 in its original and remade form prior, as well as the hot button topic it’s become over the years, you expect I'd have a lot to say about Persona 5 Royal. Well... I don't, really. All I can think about in my sleep deprived state is how my 200+ hour venture - and that's generously ignoring the idle times that're inflating Steam's counter acclimation - is how woefully underwhelming the package was save for a few bright spots, and how dispassionately apathetic I became after finally finishing and scouring out for the light.

It’s funny I mentioned my time investment a bit off the heels of a discord within FF7 Rebirth’s activities and planning, cause it should be mentioned (and emphasized) that it’s actually pretty easy to focus and fine-tune your palette into whatever it is you desire. No one except yourself, and perhaps foolish pride, is forcing you to do all of those activities after all, unless they’re particularly easy to nab off the beaten path. That is, of course, neglecting the key component: the focal point where all points are stitched and huddled around, an area P5R constantly falters over. Already saw a flashback sequence? Fret not, you’re gonna be subjugated to it not 10 minutes after. Got a good grasp of the ongoings of the story, be it by themes or event details? Alright, but you’re gonna have to bear the condescending attitude as you watch the character(s) exposit these things anyway. Grew a form of investment over a beat and how it unfolds before and during the main show? Slow your roll there bucko, you haven’t heard about the overly unnecessary and outright damaging undercurrent that ruins it! Sure, it sounds like hyperbole, and as you go along many of these detriments are either quelled or nulled, but it doesn’t change the fact that they’re present, nor does it alleviate their weight of bloat and the meekish presentation of what are honestly some pretty simple themes. The fact it took my entire first session of play to get to the initial true Free Time event on the 18th, whereas P3 - both versions, might I add - give me that freedom within just a few short hours and P4 about half, is appalling.

The writing woes extend to the Phantom Thieves themselves, which I suppose isn’t a Hot Take or anything since there’s been a bit of a debate surrounding them over the years. To dispel some common points, I don’t believe the notion that they are “centered” around Joker - on the contrary, not only is this running along the recurring theme of “kinship through displacement”, there’s already a bit of an established line between Ann and Ryuji, Futaba and Sojiro, and, though faint and dubious, Makoto and Haru. As a group, there’s a rather believable sense of friendship and camaraderie developed and finalized throughout the course of the story amidst the hustle and bustle of urban civilization, which is a bit of a surprise since I was pessimistically expecting the opposite. What did come true, unfortunately, is the lack of individualism and the expression that's delivered from it. The handling of Ann and Haru are criticized enough that I don’t think I can add anything to the former’s blobby mold of an archetype and hypocritical implementation of her supposed freedom of self-expression, and the latter’s seed of growth taken away due to the already mentioned bloat plaguing the game; same with Ryuji and how his (great) Social Link about reliance on others and strength through teamwork is routinely undermined by him being treated as a joke within the main cutscenes. Futaba is ostensibly headcanoned as one under the Autism umbrella, and while the intent is competently delivered and well-handled, the amount of #GAMER allusions are poor and clumsily handled, leading to a bumpy state of her psyche. Yusuke, who’s SL arc revolves around the dichotomy of man and their drive of passion within the hobbyist and professional mindset, is often treated as The Quirky Oddball One of the group with superficial understanding as to what art is since they did this like, twice before I guess and believed third time is truly the charm, which is also why they made Morgana have the same arc as Teddie and Aigis but without any of the things that made those two compelling. Of the group, Makoto is the one with the fewest weights holding her down; her arc is straightforward, explored to its fullest in her SL with little downplay within the narrative, and her importance in the group is always front and center. Her straight-edge nature can be too plain at times, granted, as are her connecting points regarding resolve and resolution, but compared to everyone else? It’s way easier to swallow. To reiterate, however, my main issue isn’t with the characters themselves, honestly I only truly despise Morgana and his obnoxious (albeit small in intensity) demeanor - it’s just kind of hard to truly feel connected with the group when the game seems to treat them more so as dolls for amusement than actual people, something even P4 never fully succumbed to during its outing.

I kind of wish I had more to say, really, cause it’s not as if I totally hate P5R or anything. There’s some good bits in here, like the full exploration of escapism as a theme finally being done here thanks to the “Royal” part of the game desperately giving the endgame a sense of closure, some of the non-essential confidants like Hifumi, Mishima, Chihaya and Yoshida being great to explore despite the drawbacks, and the superbosses being a fair bit of fun to go over. But, like, I’m not really sure what more I can add unfortunately. I’d sort of just be repeating common talking points and, compounded by the fact I’m facing burnout from both writing and my aforementioned time allocation, it just feels fruitless to go over? Like I don’t want to be the umpteenth mouthpiece going over how ridiculously easy this game is even excluding Merciless’ baffling(ly hilarious) modifiers pertaining to player favor and the constricted dungeon design making it so that ambushes are a rare, if ever present, occurrence one can face, cause everyone already discussed that. Did you know that, even in the original team, there were some Etrian Odyssey battle planners? Really makes me wonder how the hell it ended up so milquetoast in engagement, dungeon layout, and the us v them nature of gameplay routing when EO1’s first two stratums already had more going on. It’s also why I’m hardpressed to mention my adoration with Third Semester, cause I can’t quite word it in a way that isn’t already brought up by the people, what with Maruki, Akechi, and Kasumi being the ethos, pathos, and logos of Joker’s - and by principle, Yuki and Narukami’s - Wild Card slot and the reflection they face should his life be altered ever so slightly. I dunno man, it’s like… expansion aside, this is the RPG that got a lot of people into the genre now? The Atlus mega-hit? I’m a lot cooler on the problems than others seem to be, and I wouldn’t cynically berate others over this cause that’s stupid and rude, but it does leave me scratching my head and wondering what else I had missed in my long, long journey as an urbanite Fool.

Have so much to say but I can't write much. Have so much to express but I can't find the words. Have so much to elaborate but I don't have the energy. Have so much to expound but I can't be able to convey them.

I became conscious of death when my grandmother had passed, but it wasn't until my grandfather went away a few years after I fully became inundated as to what it meant. I can't think of many people as integral to my well being and personality as they were. I cannot recall a time where I wasn't thinking about that stark, orange colored block of a hospital room where the latter had laid, unknowing it would be the last I would ever see of him. I cannot recall a time where death wasn't something I had feared, an abstraction lay unto forces beyond my control, surrounding me so sickly as I continue to grow older. I was lost during my twilight years in high school where I was slowly accustoming into what adulthood would become like. Even now, it haunts me.

"...I finally began to understand...what it means to live... Thinking for yourself... Not running away... Accepting the inevitable... All things eventually come to an end... Every living thing will one day disappear... Only by accepting this can one discover what they truly want... What the meaning of their life will be..."

I wouldn't say Persona 3 was an answer I needed to these fears, but it helped a lot. It was the first game I had ever purchased second handed, and I remembered just the bare minimum when going into it after seeing an LP. A lot of people postured it as a game exploring death, but it's more about the examinations of life as we know it. Death is constant, but it isn't the weight. Turmoil is abundant, but it shouldn't be the reason for demise. Jealousy and apathy are thorns, which is why compassion and hope for tomorrow need to be accentuated now more than ever. Your actions to the other, no matter how insignificant it may be, can blossom and (re-)kindle something into the heart that they may have forgotten. You are your own person, even as you masquerade various personas in multiple conversations and meetups. You are the pillar and support for people, even if you never realize it.

"I decided that I would continue to protect you. I want to be your strength. I know I'm not the only one who can do this... but that's okay... My life will be worth living if it's for this reason... Thank you..."'

Both FES and Reload's combat mechanics are great to me. Though the AI tactic configuration is but a mere husk of its former design principle, stripped to bareness in each subsequent entry as any nuances and underlying appeal have since dissipated, leaving behind a set of reductions and glaring blemishes that, cumulatively, makes the initial appearance seem worse than it actually was - of which someone’s already making sure to right this wrong, I garnered some enjoyment from it regardless. Theurgy wasn't as intrusive as I had thought it was, instead an extension of person's psyche as well as the idea that the power we wield can be used to secure a better tomorrow. It’s been mocked as “cope” to say the old approach was an intentional decision behind the gameplay, but well, a collective interview between various Double Jump board users and Atlus when 4 was coming out has shown that’s just the truth indeed, and I find merit in how that form factor escalates into the feeling of a group coming together and bonding further and further into becoming a simple family. The relationship between Tartarus Guardians and Full Moon Shadows are intrinsically tied, but now reversed - you are no longer gauging the Dark Arcanas as a check for the Guardians' enforcement atop the higher floors, but are instead compartmentalizing the Guardians in an effort to combat the ephemeral being that can't and won't understand you. It's good. It's cyclical. It's the reverse of the cards we all face at some point.

"You don't have to save the world to find meaning in life... Sometimes all you need is something simple, like someone to take care of. I'll keep on living no matter what , so that I can protect you..."

I don't think this is entirely perfect. I actually much prefer the old Tartarus structure since this one is made much more convenient, and I don't agree with the false notion that the party system was archaic even if I understand not everyone will like it regardless. The presentation has some nice flourishes but, especially in the animation department, there are placements and alterations made that took me away from the intended effect. I also find it incredibly suspect that The Answer has been announced of a faux "expansion pass" relatively sooner than expected with two other "pre order bonus" ass costume DLCs preceding it, all without word on FeMC. At the end of it all, I still find FES to be the experience I'd attain whenever I want to revisit this world. Yet, I am content. It's one of very few things in fiction that has brought me to tears. It was wonderful to revisit this story (twice, even, since I replayed FES beforehand). If it means more people can experience this masterpiece, then so be it. Just another face for the fool to don as it shows itself onto the public.

"You can close your eyes. I'll always remain here by your side."

On Friday, January 5th, I got a ping in a discord server consisted of one friend group about an impromptu Fortnite get-together. Since I admittedly regained an interest in playing it, and because said friend server has yet to really do much for several months, I decided to take the opportunity to see how the game has transformed and evolved over the years. Installed the dreaded EGS launcher, got marginally but not totally surprised by the increased file size, and proceeded to log back into my account from years prior. After all, it's only gonna be just for a few days, and then I’m off to uninstall it...

...but things didn't pan out that way. What has happened instead, was a transformation into becoming an Epic Fortnite Gamer. A near 3-week foray, money spent on the Battle Pass and both Gambit and Rouge skins, and grinding my way towards unlocking Peter Griffin's page, all while accumulating levels, Ranked medals, and other knick-knacks along the way. Life really does come at ya fast when you least expect it!

To go more in-depth into my prior experience: I'm very much someone who first played Fornite's at-the-time new Battle Royale format, played a couple of matches - both with my completely separate and no longer in touch friend group and solo - and thought it was kinda neat but really lacking in staying power. I'm uncertain if I was also one of many that thought it was simply gonna be a fad that'll fade away, since this was nearly 7 years ago now, but it matters naught since it's still here, and about as popular as it was since then. There's no need to cover much of what it's about, cause even if you never played it, you certainly know of it and the appeal, so I'm just gonna make this a thorough dumping ground of my thoughts as someone who finally came back to the bus.

Firstly, and more importantly, I'm glad that Zero Build is a mode that can be opted into. Now, I'm not besmirching the mechanic in its holistic entity, but I will admit one of the reasons I fell off pretty quickly originally was because of the gap between people who can build (especially PC players), and people who can't (especially console players). You can be a quickshot all you want, but as long as the other guy can spontaneously build a Jenga tower or a Minecraft fortress to recuperate quickly, your choices are to either eat shit, continue to pester them, or just give up and bolt out entirely. These types of encounters, to me, are fine in doses - the risk-reward allure is just balanced enough that it isn't entirely irritating, and the satisfaction method is incredible! That, however, begins to dissolve into ruin when it occurs ad nauseum, tying itself into state of the loop, and altogether just demotivates my ass since the most I can do is a stairway to heaven and maybe a few walls despite my flicks of the mouse and sensitivity zones. Even with the practice mentality, there's also the fact that, again, it's been 7 years - if you've played any sort of multiplayer shooter in mind, you'd know that there's a good chance that any sort of tech people know about, will inject and hone their craft to it to days on end, and I've seen plenty opponents do some shit that simultaneously leaves me fascinated and discontented. So, just having a mode where there's little frills to that, is appreciated, even if I do tap back into the regular option every now and then.

The other thing is that there's like... actual POIs and side activities now. I recall these being a thing in 2017, but it was a lot more minimalistic and very much in the vein of "we needed something to have players distract themselves and play the game with". Solid enough base, but combine that with the haphazard loop I had before, it again just made the dull grind even more prevalent. That nagging aspect is still present, but it's way easier to tolerate and avoid now. Vehicles, more movement options when doing on-foot roaming, an entourage group to pick off and reap rewards from to better your gamestate, and just the overall map layout is way, way more satisfying to convey and poke around than ever, even if I'm not entirely sure how prior seasons were like. Hell, this also obfuscates the other big critique that was going on at the time, which was how spacious people could become. Rarely has the thought of "man this is kinda boring" occur now since everything feels more fulfilling to explore and do, especially using grapple blades atop various points and just ZOOOOOOOOMING to where I need to go, or just ramming bogeys and guffawing at how high they get launched, or doing dopey motorbike tricks across hilltops. It's neat! It's exciting! It just about upends most of the issues I had to begin with!

I really don't have much else to like, add at this point, aside from some qualms:

- The bots here are on the opposite spectrum end of TF2's Bot Crisis; instead of being hammered down by some flagrant creations stopping any sort of enjoyment I can muster, there's more of an awe factor over how braindead they can be. I'm not quite sure how the system itself operates, but while I know and understand they're a necessity to fill up empty spaces, that becomes highly questionable when I see these guys fuck up easy picks, do some bizarre pathfinding and routine interactions, and somehow overcompensate within a quarter at most of the 100-player pool. This is the least egregious of the three ire I'm covering, but even then it's just... confounding. Not sure what's going on here!

- Aside from BR, there's now Lego Fortnite, Rocket Racing, and Festival. I only used LF briefly cause of an XP exploit, but I did at least put actual time into RR and Festival, and I'm thoroughly unimpressed with both. The former's a really dull and barebones arcade racer that couldn't even compete with some of the more straightforward affairs during the 5th Console Gen Boom, and well, Cold_Comfort goes over the woes of Festival even if I'm not that harsh about it. One could say these can be ignored since the main aspect is BR, but since they're easily visible upon the main bar of the lobby, I feel like it's fair game to expect these to be in a commendable quality - especially since Epic Games have been making big talk about user-generated content and have seemingly been in a stronger push in competing with Roblox.

- Since this is an ongoing season, solidifying and boxing the current meta state is tricky. What I can say for now though is that, with the feel of everything being good on a base level, there's a clear power imbalance. There's absolutely no reason to pick up the Hammer Pump variant of the shotgun, since Frenzy Auto has a strictly higher DPS and can easily mulch people by comparison; same goes for the Enforcer AR, being pitifully outclassed in speed and output by the Nemesis and especially Striker variants; I don't have any major beef with the Lock-On Pistol, due to its four-charge shots contains a slight buffer between each piece + all while leaving the player vulnerable should they be careless (especially to someone who Knows What They're Doing)... but the availability of this is perplexes me. I've gone entire games without either my downed foes or myself finding it, meanwhile I can simply trip across Ballistic Shields, a weapon that sounds about as good as it does while also not being nearly as OP as it sounds or others postulate, despite that being in a higher rarity color. Weird little quirks like that making the fights distinct but also just sort of headscratching as to where they could go. Also, maybe an Issue Of Skill, but I’ve seen instances of a bullet from my sniper shots clearly hitting its mark, but then somehow never registering?

I actually can’t recall the last time a multiplayer game had its pull on me quite like this, perhaps Among Us which had faced similar views. May keep this on for the time being until I actually do procure the Griffin or maybe Solid Snake since he’s close to being unleashed upon the world. I’m not sure where and how this chapter will go next, but if nothing else, it at least pulled me back in after years of inquisitive glances and intrigue. It is also carrying one of the most important mantles of any piece of fiction: having multiple patient zeros that will cajole someone into becoming a furry. Truly, this is a blessed time!