Finish 52 Challenge 2024
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Let’s all remember Runcle who started this many years ago. Runcle, who once wrote:

Quote:
Last year I tried to finish/complete 52 video games within the whole of 2013, a Bruce busy November and December ruined my goal and I finished on an agonisingly close 49 games completed.

I'm going to try again this year and wondered if anyone else would like to join in.

Your way of finishing games may be different to mine, generally for me it's completing the story but for others it may be to get all the achievements/trophies. Also you may have different rules for each game, for example a game like FIFA that you can't really complete, I have decided that I either have to get all the trophies or to win Division 1 of the Ultimate Team Seasons mode.

Also you can complete games you've completed before and you can complete games that you have started in any previous year, it doesn't have to be a new game started this year. It can also be on any platform including mobile, and obviously cheating is pointless as your only cheating yourself as there is no prizes or anything. Just a reduced back log of games and sense of immense pride, achievement and self worth.


God bless you, Runcle. Although he did mention that he plays FIFA. What a dick.
Anyhoo, I clocked:

1) Trepang2 (PS)

Do you like FEAR? Not the emotion, silly, the game. It’s like that but for the 2020’s. Lots of exploding, lots of enemy chatter, lots of sliding around waving your foot and activating slow mo and all that shit.

Except it’s not much like FEAR outside of how it plays (and that may or may not bother you) because it’s mission based, has side missions which are just arenas, is a bit fiddly in parts, and, shockingly, you can complete it and every single mission it has to offer within about 5 hours (again, that may or may not bother you). Well I did anyway, and that was on hard difficulty. I did try playing on normal and, frankly, it was taking the piss how easy it was. There’s another couple of difficulty levels above hard but I couldn’t be bothered to find out about them since hard was a decent sweet spot. Anyway, it’s only about twenty quid so it’s a reasonable deal I reckon.

I liked it, but not as much as I love FEAR. The game.

EDIT:- Oh, here’s some footage I captured running around with shotguns in one of the arena levels. Absolute carnage when you’re playing. I’ve forgot how good it was actually! https://youtu.be/GpEKxkmwXU8?si=C9z-h5wm1EVwHI3m
1) Trepang2 (PS)
2) River City Girls 2 (PS)

It’s a brilliant beat em up in the vein of the recent TMNT! 4 player online! RPG elements with stats and shit! The graphics are awesome! The story is genuinely funny in parts (albeit over written sometimes)! Plenty of game too at about 13 hours and haven’t even done all the side quests! And it’s not really a belt scroller either cause you choose your paths and there’s back tracking and fast travel! And shops! And upgrades! And combos! And plenty of new moves to buy and punch people with!

Yeah, not too much to complain about with this one.
Satsuma wrote:
1) Trepang2 (PS)
2) River City Girls 2 (PS)


3) Back 4 Blood (XB)

Like Left 4 Dead but with “decks”. It’s alright, I guess. I couldn’t be arsed with it after a hoard level where “Ace of Spades” plays raucously in the background. Nothing ever managed to surpass that.
1) Monster Hunter World (PC)
If you like being screamed at into stumbling around helplessly for a few seconds while monsters savage you, this is the game for you! Failing that, if you like things hitting the ground near you, making you stumble around helplessly for a few seconds while monsters savage you, this is the game for you! Failing that, if you like that bit in SF2 when your opponent hits you and then you get to stand still with stars around your head while your opponent gets to hit you for free, but wouldn't mind trading that opponent for a monster who wants to savage you, then this is the game for you!

Aside from that it's not bad.
1) Monster Hunter World (PC)
2) Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun (PC)

The game the devs who made shadow gambit did before the game they did before shadow gambit. The lineage is clear and it is a good steallthy tactics game, but having played them in this order... Oh boy, did I miss some of the quality of life changes, and the generally more refined design they had by that point.
1) Monster Hunter World (PC)
2) Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun (PC)
3) Unpacking (PS5)

You unpack boxes. And then you do it again.
1) Monster Hunter World (PC)
2) Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun (PC)
3) Unpacking (PS5)
4) Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart (PS5)
It's more Ratchet and clank. still fun mechanically, but felt less humourous than past entrys.
Satsuma wrote:
1) Trepang2 (PS)
2) River City Girls 2 (PS)
3) Back 4 Blood (XB)



4) Far Cry 6 (XB)

Talk about a series that hasn’t progressed in, like what, a decade or some shit. It’s the same as before, but now with coop that actually works. It’s fun in coop to kick around, but solo? Fuck me, it’s boring. And talk about anti-climatic: the final mission has you fight up a skyscraper to the apartment on the top floor…

..well, it should but you come in, kill one guy and climb the stairs up 3 floors; then you fight about 5 guys (head shotting them all immediately) and climb one more floor where you enter a lift. Then it ends. And what annoyed me was that all the good stuff happens in the cutscenes and you don’t get to interact in ANY of them. Get here, interact with this closed door and watch what happens. Time and time again. It’s gone backwards for fucks sake. Yeah, it’s a series that seriously needs to either die or sort itself out.
Would you say it's a Far Cry from what it used to be?
Satsuma wrote:
1) Trepang2 (PS)
2) River City Girls 2 (PS)
3) Back 4 Blood (XB)
4) Far Cry 6 (XB)



5) Valheim (early access) (XB)

I was fucking loving this. It was like the Dark Souls of crafting, survival, thing that this game is. It was hard as balls, I didn’t understand what I was supposed to be doing, I didn’t understand what type of game it was and I could barely understand how the controls worked on a controller. But, man, the atmosphere and the meadows music…just beautiful. I couldn’t get enough of getting my head kicked in my boars and then suddenly it started to click! I’m crafting! I fucking hate crafting, but I’m chopping trees and collecting stuff; I’ve got a hammer and now I’ve got a rudimentary base; now I’m making excursions to other places and collecting more stuff and learning how the stamina and health works; I’m getting stronger on my self made missions, I’ve got a weapon, and another, now a bow! I’m dead. I’m making death runs, I’m widening my space on the map, I’ve got a shield; shit, I’ve got enough stuff to take a run at the boss! I’ve done it! Onto a new area! Instant death. I’m making limited excursions into new areas and mining and running away! I’ve been chased by trolls! Enemies are invading my camp. I’ve got a location for the next boss! I’ve zoomed out the map and , FUCK ME, this place is massive. Fuck how am to get there. Hang on, I can’t get to it. Hang on, I’m in an island. Many hours later…I’ve got a fucking boat! OMG this game is amazing. I’m in the ocean!

Essentially that’s how it all started. I was fully immersed for some reason, the game just hooking you in with the beautiful yet simple graphics. The weather effects are some of the best I’ve seen, for sure. The hook then becomes: go into a new biome, get your head kicked in while mining new resources so you can start a new crafting branch and then follow that until you’re just about strong enough to take on the denizens of that biome properly and either milk the resources or find the boss location. Beat the boss and then move onto the next zone. It’s simple but extremely challenging. Each boss defeat is like a reset that puts you back to square one where you’ll get your head kicked in immediately when you go to the next biome. And I was bloody loving it!

Until the fifth biome. I must have sailed to a dozen plains biomes, cleared the extremely difficult goblin villages and couldn’t find the location of the boss rune thing. I used a walkthrough and it said to look for Stonehenge like buildings - sometimes only one in a biome. So I find it in each area and there’s no rune. Apparently there’s only a small % chance it even turns up. So I’ve been playing for hours and hours and hours busting around on my ship and clearing areas and even though I’m resource rich I can’t move onto the next area cause I can’t find the boss.
So I look online again and apparently on Xbox I can cheat and get the dev commands so I can fly about. So I do this and I fly around for, like, over an hour looking around each plain biome for the Stonehenge structures. I must have done loads. Literally fucking LOADS. None of them has the rune. I’m not kidding when I must have cleared 12 areas normally and flew to, what must have been, like, 20 odd areas for an hour of flying around. Eventually I just stumble across the fucking boss location miles from everywhere I’d been! So I fly about getting my shit - I’d left my boat and items somewhere, basically cheating now, and fix a portal and fuck him up.

Then it’s onto the last biome available at the minute, The Mistlands. And aren’t they the most cunty area of all. Stupid insects that stun lock you to death. A few more hours of wandering around, doing some crafting, and barely finding any places to go and I’m sick of it. The plains fuck up and suddenly the emergency of cheat codes and I can’t be arsed. I find the boss location from an online resource turn on god mode and just sit whacking away at the final available boss until it finally dies and I can uninstall the game.

I swear that one experience of not being able to progress past the plains entirely ruined my experience. I was happy doing it vanilla, on my own and learning and farting about and save scumming…now, when I knew I could cheat, well, I had had enough. It felt like it was wasting my time suddenly.
Cyberpunk 2077

ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
got the soul scraped and headed to the big database in the sky
Satsuma wrote:
1) Trepang2 (PS)
2) River City Girls 2 (PS)
3) Back 4 Blood (XB)
4) Far Cry 6 (XB)
5) Valheim (early access) (XB)



6) Persona 3 Reload (XB)

I missed out on playing Persona 3 Portable on Game Pass a while back cause I could never find the inclination to start a big game so when Reload came on I had to clock it before that gets taken off too. I’m kinda glad I waited anyway, cause this (so I’m told) is the same game but beefed up tremendously with Persona 5 visuals.

And it’s great! Especially if you enjoyed Persona 4/5 you’ll get a kick out of this. The only rub is, if you want to play a Persona game but want it, erm, “different” then you won’t be getting that at all cause this is, for all intents, the same game with a new story, same social elements, same enemy types and less interesting dungeon crawling/missions. So if you want the same thing then you’ll be happy, I guess.

The cast is all great of course but there’s lots of similarities to the characters from 4/5. The main task of the game is to climb a massive tower and each month you can get up so many flights before it gets blocked off until the start of the new month. That’s where the fightings happen, and, well, it gets a bit samey because there’s 260-odd levels to clock the fucking thing. But it’s not exactly hard if you’ve played the other games and I only died a handful of times. I smashed the final boss without much trouble but after 2 Persona games and fair few JRPGs under my belt by now I knew what was required. Thankfully there ain’t much grinding, except to say that 260+ floors is pretty much the grind anyway…

So yeah, more of the same. I had a blast playing it - really enjoyed the socials more than the “rock, paper, scissors” battles I think (much like the previous games) or rather I played the battles so I could do more socials.

Hilariously for a Persona game I was surprised that there was zero consequence for having more than one girlfriend. I romanced the shit out of them all and despite a couple of occasions where I thought I was going to get found out, no one gave a shit in the end. Boo!

I’d very much like to play a game that isn’t 85 hours long now please. I’ve only clocked 6 games this year and all of them except the first was immensely time consuming!
Satsuma wrote:
1) Trepang2 (PS)
2) River City Girls 2 (PS)
3) Back 4 Blood (XB)
4) Far Cry 6 (XB)
5) Valheim (early access) (XB)
6) Persona 3 Reload (XB)



7) Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (PS)

Yeah, it ain’t great. There’s more open missions where you have a roam about and stuff, it’s got unnecessary armour plates from Warzone and it hasn’t got an original bone in its body. Case in point, the AC-130 mission returns. Again.

But y’know what annoys me about the highest grossing videogame each year - the big cash cow with almost infinite funds? They haven’t done fuck all with the enemy AI. Like, ever. It’s a crap shoot again. Fucking nothing. All this money and they couldn’t, like, get enemies to get into formations? Stack up? Shout commands to each other? Just fucking do something other than shit their pants and crouch behind cover waiting to pop out and get shot in the head. God it’s so fucking frustrating that FEAR was never looked at as inspiration in the last, like, 20+ years or something by any game ever. Well, maybe Halo. Halo Infinite wasn’t great, but the enemies are still fun to fight. You can’t say that about CoD. I’m not sure I can say I found much fun to be had here at all.

Maybe people wouldn’t avoid playing it if they sorted out the enemy AI and made it fun to play outside of the set pieces. Set pieces that barely exist here cause the levels are more open.
Satsuma wrote:
1) Trepang2 (PS)
2) River City Girls 2 (PS)
3) Back 4 Blood (XB)
4) Far Cry 6 (XB)
5) Valheim (early access) (XB)
6) Persona 3 Reload (XB)
7) Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (PS)
8 ) Double Dragon: Gaiden (PS)



9) Super Mario Wonder (Switch)

I’ve decided I fucking hate 2D Mario games. The 3D can be often really good, but I find the 2D to be especially boring to play. Despite all the crazy happenings here (and it ain’t exactly going to blow your mind. Oh look Mario is an elephant. For. Every. Level. It’s just the new power up.) it’s still just confined by the structure of a typical Mario course: 2 minutes long. Loads of checkpoints. Very rarely challenging. Rinse and repeat for 100 levels and have a boss battle with Bowser.

Despite the praise and Nintendo fan-boy wanking over this, it’s pretty dull stuff. Nice. But dull.
I actually stole this thread idea for my forum and generally, because I review a lot of indie tat, I always get to 52. Not sure I'll make it this year though. PS5 versions mainly.

1 - Brotato (Switch)
2 - Spider-Man 2
3 - It Takes Two
4 - Nephenthesys
5 - Starward Rogue
6 - Vampire Survivors (Switch)
7 - Gotham Knights
8 - Brotato
9 - Dead End City
10 - Mortal Kombat 1
11 - The Outlast Trials
12 - Match Village
13 - Mighty Mage
14 - Flightpath: Adventures in Venaris
15 - Vampire Survivors DLC/Adventure Mode (Switch)
16 - King Arthur: A Knight's Tale
17 - Zombies, Aliens and Guns
18 - Space Mercenary Defense Force
19 - Remnant 2 Forgotten King DLC
20 - Army of Ruin

EDIT

21 - Doug's Nightmare
Satsuma wrote:
1) Trepang2 (PS)
2) River City Girls 2 (PS)
3) Back 4 Blood (XB)
4) Far Cry 6 (XB)
5) Valheim (early access) (XB)
6) Persona 3 Reload (XB)
7) Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (PS)
8 ) Double Dragon: Gaiden (PS)
9) Super Mario Wonder (Switch)



10) Streets of Rage 4 (PS)

Now enters the list of few games I’ve played more than once. Bloody great this.
Satsuma wrote:
1) Trepang2 (PS)
2) River City Girls 2 (PS)
3) Back 4 Blood (XB)
4) Far Cry 6 (XB)
5) Valheim (early access) (XB)
6) Persona 3 Reload (XB)
7) Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (PS)
8 ) Double Dragon: Gaiden (PS)
9) Super Mario Wonder (Switch)
10) Streets of Rage 4 (PS)



11) Pikmin 4 (Switch)

I like the Pikmin games a fair bit but the handholding for a game on its fourth incarnation is too much. It does try to innovate its own formula with the following stuff:

• a dog you can ride on, control independently (with the same moves as the player), gather all the pikmin on, do a little jump that the player can’t, act as a sniffer dog in case you can’t be arsed to explore yourself and probably some other stuff. There’s a charge move where you fling all your pikmin at once when you’re sat on the dog.

Splitting the character and the dog sounds like it’d be used a lot more for gameplay and puzzling than the handful of times that it actually is used unfortunately. Being able to ride around with your pikmin and jump about, means you do that 95% of the time and the charge move means you exclusively attack all enemies using that because most enemies get fucked instantly when you sit all your dudes on their face/back.

• there’s a hub, there’s caves to explore and a variety of time attack, puzzle rooms and other stuff; the main one being night missions where you play tower defence against incoming baddies while growing a different kind of pikmin that instantly teleports to you. There’s a pack with items like bombs and stuff.

These are nice enough. The hub does nothing for me, the story is bobbins, and the caves are all right. Some are surprisingly challenging towards the end. The night missions are fucking boring though. The pack stuff was annoying. I barely gave a fuck about using an ice bomb or whatever.

• there’s an end of game baddie.

Goes on forever.

• cutscenes

Cutscenes up the arsehole. I’ve got RSI from clicking through these.

In fact, the game took 29 hours to clock (100% every world) which is pretty long for a kids game. If you enjoy the Pikmin loop then I expect you’ll enjoy this. I did, but often in spite of the barriers in the way which had nothing to do with the gameplay and more the annoying extra bits.
Satsuma wrote:
1) Trepang2 (PS)
2) River City Girls 2 (PS)
3) Back 4 Blood (XB)
4) Far Cry 6 (XB)
5) Valheim (early access) (XB)
6) Persona 3 Reload (XB)
7) Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (PS)
8 ) Double Dragon: Gaiden (PS)
9) Super Mario Wonder (Switch)
10) Streets of Rage 4 (PS)
11) Pikmin 4 (Switch)



13) Returnal (PS)

Clocked it with a friend in coop. Great game. God-tier haptics.
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