Videogames Beaten by VGGers in 2017
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Welcome to the sure-to-be-massive, soon-to-be-out-of-control Geeklist where VGGers rejoice in beating games large and small, new and old. Here's how this works:

Whenever you finish a game, add it to the list and share your thoughts. Use your best judgement for exactly WHEN a game is 'beaten:' 'final boss defeated,''saw the credits,' 'completed the main storyline,' '100%' etc. Whatever seems reasonable and is the end for you.

These lists have been running since 2011 and tend to draw a lot of conversation. Feel free to offer whatever commentary you like on the game and your experience playing it. Be brief or thorough, broad or narrow - its up to you.

To get started, tell us what platform you played the game on and whether or not you've beaten it before.

There are always some "power-users" on this list who play a lot of games and have a lot to say about them. Don't feel like you have to contribute as much or as often somebody else - we like to hear from new folks and nobody really cares if you're "keeping up with the Joneses."

To all new users: the more the merrier. We try to keep it lively and friendly. There is no need to read through every page before jumping in (though you are encouraged to do that at your leisure.) Be sure to subscribe to this list so you can see what everyone else is playing!

Also head on over to Video Games Abandoned by VGGers in 2017 if a game is driving you nuts or just isn't any good! If you're just not sure about a game, embrace your ambivalence. If you want to see what VGGers were up to in years past, look here.

Also, make sure to join the fray at The 2017 Videogame Challenge!.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Should I add a game to this list if it has already been added by somebody else?
A: Of course!

Q: Should I add a game to list more than once if I beat it more than once?
A: No, but feel free to update your original item or add a new comment beneath it.

Q: I wrote something for this list that seems review-ish. Should I cross-post it as a review?
A: If you are so inclined, cross-post away.

VGG Community Goals for 2017:

mb Community goal 2017: Play the top 101-200 games on the VGG ranking list

mb Community goal 2017: Play games on 5 different platforms!

mb Community Goal 2017: Let's play games on as many platforms as we can!

And of course, our community goal for this list is to finish 1800 games!
___________________________________________________________________________________

Sorting:

VGGer extraordinaire Grimwold hosts a useful sorting mechanism for these lists through his own site (oh, it seems weird now, just wait until there are 1000+ items). This lets you see what individual users have beaten (sort by user) and also how many times a game has been beaten, and by whom (sort by game). Due to the way VGG handles caching, you will need to refresh the lists 10-15 seconds after clicking on the links below.

Sort by User

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Microbadges!

Everyone who participates on this list and the abandoned list will get a free microbadge!

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You can also purchase these as a longer-term variant.

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Stats - Updated November 8th

Are we on pace to finish 1800 games this year? Not quite, but we're in the home stretch and we could still make it!

Most Popular Games:

14 Dr. Langeskov, The Tiger, and The Terribly Cursed Emerald: A Whirlwind Heist
12 Swappy 10
8 The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
8 Portal 2
6 Warhammer: End Times – Vermintide
6 The Witness (2016)
6 Refunct

Most 'Dedicated' Gamers:

93 Legolas_Katarn
53 UnknownParkerBrother
53 wizcreations
50 tickmanfan
50 seneca29
48 JohnRayJr
44 Aarontu
44 ColdFrog
43 Eldritch
42 vyran
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51. Video Game: Ori and The Blind Forest: Definitive Edition [Average Rating:8.14 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.14 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.14 Unranked]
Kevin J
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Toronto
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Time: ~8 hours
System: PC
Beaten: Normal difficulty, except for the final stretch where I knocked it down to easy in frustration

I picked up Ori with pretty high expectations -- it has been hailed as a magnificent metroidvania with beautiful art. As a result of my high expectations, I was let down a little by the game. It's beautiful no doubt, but I think that some of the game design choices are questionable and the the art often gets in the way of the gameplay.

For instance, it's very easy to not notice harmful spikes in the environment since they blend in with the safe walls and ground. Similarly, enemy projectiles are hard to notice and predict partly because of their palette. Oftentimes, it is hard to know if a wall is something that can be jumped off of if it is at a somewhat shallow angle I was stuck very early on because I didn't know that a particular rock could be pushed to provide access to an area, so I spent a lot of time trying to figure out where I was supposed to go next.

Combat is a little annoying too -- later in the game, there are enemies that will take 8-10 hits from your attack (this is assuming that you have been upgrading your attack strength through the game as well...), and will deal 2-4 blocks of damage to you with very fast moving projectiles. Most enemies will have longer range than you do, so often combat felt like me trying to flail around mashing the attack button until the enemy died, and if I lost too much health, killing myself to go back to a checkpoint to try again.

That's because if you create a new checkpoint when you are low on health, it can really backfire. At one point I saved in a precarious spot before a difficult platforming section, and had to exit the game to be able to reload an earlier save.

Then, there are a few very difficult platforming sections where one mis-step will kill you and force you to start the sequence from the beginning. On the final one, I turned the difficulty down to easy and found that the game gave me checkpoints to work with (thankfully!).

All that aside, it was enjoyable enough to finish, though I would have saved myself a lot of frustration had I started on easy.
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52. Video Game: Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime [Average Rating:7.14 Overall Rank:2156]
Kevin J
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Toronto
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Time: I think about 4 hours?
Beaten: All the galaxies on normal difficulty, with 2-4 players
System: PC

Lovers in a Dangeruos Spacetime is a co-op game (originally designed for 2, but later with the option of 3 & 4 players) where you and your friend(s) control a circular spaceship around various galaxies to save your friends to harness their love power. The ship has four main stations: engine, shield, super-cannon, and four turrets pointing at the four cardinal directions. The meat of the game is accomplishing your goals while bouncing between the stations to defend against enemies who will fire at your ship.

With 2, it's quite hard and slow going, but with 4 it's a little too easy (one on engines, one on shields, and the other two on whatever the most appropriate weapons are). 3 is a nice sweet spot if you want a relatively casual romp through the cosmos, though I wish there were some incentive to switch up the stations periodically as opposed to each person picking a station and mostly sticking with it.
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53. Video Game: Virginia [Average Rating:6.07 Overall Rank:5851]
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Platform: PS4

Clocktime: 4 hours.

Completion: Two full playthroughs, one blind, and the other using a guide to see any interactions I might have missed.

Commentary: Perhaps the only game I can think of that both aspires to and deserves to be called "avant-guard."

Virginia is comprised of a few dozen brief scenes that most players will complete in 90-120 minutes. Most scenes involve some sort of implicit interaction between people, but there is no dialogue, only pantomime.



That, combined with the game's frequent jump-cuts and playful reality-bending, means that the "game" is essentially just: can you get a handle on what's going on and feel satisfied with yourself for piercing the veil.

And, in the industry context, will you applaud the game as a fierce reaction against plodding explosition where everything is spoonfed to you in the dullest of ways.

Maybe you're satisfied at sorting it out and maybe you're glad to see the game extend the middle-finger to AAA's habit of doing less with more.

But is Virgina actually well done on its own terms? I don't think it is. Since the game is so short, and since the first playthrough is at least intriguing, I decided to run through it again with some online help to pin down little moments of interaction that I might have missed. The second run left me shaking my head. There's little more here than smoke and mirrors.

4/10
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54. Video Game: Demon Hunter 3: Revelation [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Jonna
Finland
Helsinki
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"Live your truth. Express your love. Share your enthusiasm. Take action towards your dreams. Walk your talk. Dance and sing to your music. Embrace your blessings. Make today worth remembering." ― Steve Maraboli
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नमस्ते (Namaste) – I honor the place in you in which the entire universe dwells. I honor the place in you which is of love, of truth, of light and of peace. When you are in that place in you and I am in that place in me, we are one.
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Platform: PC
Time: 5 hours
Time Beaten: First

I enjoyed playing the game and it was a decent HOG. This whole series wasn't the best ever in the field of HOGs, but I'm glad I played them and could recommend these to people who like the genre.
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55. Video Game: Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer [Average Rating:7.88 Overall Rank:153] [Average Rating:7.88 Unranked]
Amy O'Neal
United States
Mechanicsville
Virginia
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Platform: iPad
Time: 20 minutes
First Time? No

Going by the Community goal 2017: Play the top 101-200 games on the VGG ranking list, I've played and beaten this game several times so far this year... Nothing much to boast about, but, since it's on that list and I've been listed as beating it, I guess I'll be good and post it here... If only I'd thought about these last year, I could have bumped the number by quite a few games...

And, as for a rating, this is one of the best boardgame adaptations that has been made... I would rate this about a 9.5 out of 10...
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56. Video Game: Diablo III: Ultimate Evil Edition [Average Rating:8.13 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.13 Unranked]
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Diablo III: Ultimate Evil Edition
Platform: Playstation 4
Time taken: not sure
Rating:
Games finished this year: 2
First time?: Yes

I played Diablo III in couch coop with my girlfriend. It was a top-notch cooperative experience and a nice way to blow-off some steam. The game boasts a truly impressive degree of monster and item variety.

I knock a couple of stars off because
- Your first playthrough has to be on a lower difficulty level. We found the game far too easy because once you get some items that automatically heal your character you almost never die. The other extreme (hardcore mode) involves permadeath, which seems like a recipe for frustration.

- The story wasn't terrible, but it was a bit thin and under-explored for an RPG game. I get that story is not really what Diablo is about, but I would like a bit more emphasis there anyway.

- The quality of the environments was variable. Act IV in the high heavens, in particular, was not to my taste and seemed a bit uninspired compared to the masterpieces that were present elsewhere.

- There were side-quest style dungeons, but they weren't very interesting. I would have liked some richer "events" (as they are called) to pull us off the critical path more often.


---

Running list for 2017: Firewatch; Diablo III: Ultimate Evil Edition

2016's running list: Until Dawn; Quake; The Witcher 3; Homeworld; Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising; Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain; Call of Duty Black Ops; Quake Mission Pack 1: Scourge of Armagon; Silent Hill 3; Tom Clancy's The Division; South Park: The Stick of Truth; Pit Fighter; Sonic the Hedgehog; Enemy Front; Journey; Firewatch; Sonic the Hedgehog 2; Gone Home; SOMA; Moirai; Quake Mission Pack 2: Dissolution of Eternity; Everybody's Gone to the Rapture; Dark Souls III; Magic 2014; The Wolf Among Us; Life is Strange; Fallout 4.
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57. Video Game: ABZÛ [Average Rating:6.87 Overall Rank:2207]
Kenneth Stuart
United States
Hawthorne
California
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Platform: Windows
Playtime: 3 hours 1st playthrough, 1 hour 2nd playthrough
First time? Yes (and second)
Enjoyment: moderate at first, then kind of low

I am going to join the ranks of individuals that do not give ABZU a glowing recommendation. If you think you may be interested in this game, then go ahead and give it a shot, but I do not give it a high recommendation.



ABZU primarily offers great music accompanied by pretty and bright visuals that are perhaps a bit too cartoonish. I won't deny that the game is beautiful and there are a lot of fish for you to encounter, but that's about it. Some sort of story is told by murals on walls, but the story is not very intuitive and I'm still not certain I understood what the game was trying to portray.

On your first playthrough, you will be able to discover hidden pools that release new aquatic life into the world and collect hidden shells. I did enjoy seeing the new sights that the game had to offer in each area, but mostly I just enjoyed exploring to find the hidden pools and shells. If you happen to play through a second time, the game offers nothing new to interact with. I missed some shells in my first play so I played the game a second time. About halfway through I realized that I was incredibly bored. The environments really aren't so spectacular that they merit a second experience.

You are forced to swim through the ocean at a leisurely pace, allowing you to slowly take in the environments and discover all the wildlife. This speed limitation is fine at the beginning of the game but grows rather tiresome later on when you are required to swim across vast open areas. You can unlock faster movement speed but it requires you to find all the hidden shells (which means you'll have already beaten the game and therefore not need the increased speed).

I heard and read a lot of commentary comparing this game to Journey, and given that the development team of ABZU also worked on Journey, that's an understandable comparison. However, this game doesn't come close to comparing to Journey. Journey was a masterful experience worth playing over and over again. ABZU is only worth playing once (and maybe not even once for some players).

A quick note on game mechanics: camera management and movement controls are not as intuitive as I would expect for a 3D environment, often leading to frustration. I often found that the diver would swim in a direction that appeared completely unrelated to the direction I input. Thankfully, you can't really die and the slow movement means you're not trying to get anywhere in a hurry, but it was still annoying.

Ultimately, I think ABZU lacks the direction needed to make the game great. It offers really strong audio and visual stimulus, but it falls short in almost all other regards. This game is essentially an underwater walking simulator with nearly no story and nothing to do except encounter the environments themselves.

5/10
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58. Video Game: Mega Man [Average Rating:6.69 Overall Rank:1391] [Average Rating:6.69 Unranked]
Luke Jaconetti
United States
Simpsonville
South Carolina
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Mega Man via Mega Man Legacy Collection played on my Nintendo 2DS
Time: 4 hours
This is part of The 2017 Videogame Challenge!

As I have said before, I did not have an NES as a kid, so Mega Man was never a "thing" for me save for the cartoon until I got the SGG release of Mega Man (Game Gear) when I was in high school. I really dug that game, and when I got to college I started playing on the online game Mega Man MUSH (AKA M3). Once in that world, I really got interested in the series and played a bunch of them on NES emulators. So naturally when I saw the Legacy Collection on sale in the eStore, I picked it up. And while I had played the original, I had never beaten it, so I decided to queue it and it's 5 sequels up for the 2017 VGG Challenge.

I took the route of Bomb Man - Guts Man - Cut Man - Elec Man - Ice Man - Fire Man. I grew up playing platform games in the 1980s so even though I was new to this specific game, I made my way through the stages pretty well. Guts Man's stage with the moving platforms was a major pain in the rear, and there are some jumps in Elec Man's stage which were tougher for me than they would have been for a seasoned player. But generally made good progress.

I did not know the Magnet Beam existed, so in retrospect: very glad I picked it up!

The Wily Stages were great fun and really challenging, especially the accursed Yellow Devil, who took me quite a while to beat even after I had memorized the block pattern! In comparison, the Wily Machine was much easier.

The verdict: A deserved classic -- can't wait to dig into Mega Man 2 in addition to already having made it to the first Wily stage in Mega Man 5
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59. Video Game: To the Moon [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:800]
Rudy
United States
No too far from Philly
Pennsylvania
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Another game beaten! I don't know who I am anymore.

This is the third short game recommended to me. I tried this one a few years ago and stopped playing it after about 5-10 minutes. I was running around the house looking for keys and puzzles not knowing it was not that type of game. Then a few folks said this is more of a story than a game and knowing that that really helped me to play it and like it. Yeah, I cried a little.
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60. Video Game: HoPiKo [Average Rating:6.00 Unranked]
Kennan Ward
United States
Idaho
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Completed: HoPiKo
Platform: PC

HoPiKo is a platformer that has you controlling a digital being that needs to stop a virus preventing a gaming console from working. You point your character in the way that you want them to jump, or press a button to have them quickly jump straight up, with the goal of landing on different platforms until you can jump into and destroy the stage's virus. Things start of easy but become more difficult as platforms kill you if you stay on them to long, moving enemies and obstacles appear, platforms that you land on break and start rotating, lasers block paths, etc. Some of these give you a nice little puzzle where you might want to hit a certain side of a breakable platform to move a certain way or to rotate it, possible rotating it in a way to block a laser from hitting you while you make your next jump. There are multiple "world" to play through with each having different styles to them, each world has a list of stages with each stage consisting of five maps that you need to complete in one run. You can unlock additional tracks or a bonus stage in each world that might change up the gameplay. Stage colors and platform designs are used well to be both visually interesting and to quickly let you know and react to what is going on.

Sent to me by Blammo, thanks again.

https://twitter.com/Legolas_Katarn/status/818388846471585792
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61. Video Game: Hook (2014) [Average Rating:6.70 Overall Rank:3692]
Chris
United States
Chicago
Illinois
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Platform: PC
Time: an hour (though about 20 minutes was repeating earlier solving)
Time Completed: First
Enjoyment: Medium to Medium-High

Hook is a simple, but functional, puzzle game that is not extremely exciting but gets the job done. As I seem to complain about with so many games lately, it takes far too long to get started (maybe it's just me). It does take its time introducing the mechanics but they're not bad mechanics. Ultimately, though, it's just a visual maze with a couple tricks to it. It's not terrible and it's a bit engaging, but it's not my thing. It does go for a particular

a e s t h e t i c

which is fine, and it is very cheap, but *shrug*.

recommended for people interested in a light puzzle with a simple, but not unappealing visual style and likes the idea of visual mazes.
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Pieter
Netherlands
Tilburg
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Genre: Joke
Platform: PC
Difficulty: N/A
Time spent: 1 hour

Dr. Langeskov is probably going to be the Moirai/You Have to Burn the Rope this year. It's free, it's short, and it's fun. Not much to say about it, except that most of the achievements don't seem to work (I played through it twice to get some achievements on my second run, but none popped up even though I am sure that I did everything I needed to do for them). But recommended overall.

EDIT: Achievements do work but are pretty bugged. I explain in a comment below what you have to take into account to get them. Basically, you have to start a completely new game from Steam (so not restarting inside the program), and you have to make sure to never Alt-Tab out of it. More comments on this below.
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63. Video Game: Dust: An Elysian Tail [Average Rating:7.45 Overall Rank:694]
United States
Washington
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Dust: An Elysian Tail - PC (Steam)
Main game beaten on Normal difficulty
First time beaten
12 hours

This is an action platform game set in a fantasy setting with talking animals. You play as an enigmatic warrior with no memory of your past, equipped with a talking sword and a magic pixie-like flying sidekick, and your goal is to fight an evil general who is trying to take over the world. There's more to the plot that's reveled throughout the game, but honestly I didn't care much about the story. Gameplay is mostly fun, though the combat can get a little tedious. I might write a full review later. Overall the game was just okay.
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64. Video Game: Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII [Average Rating:6.21 Overall Rank:3900]
Matt
United States
Alabama
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Platform: PC
Time played: 45 hours

After some ups and a lot of downs, I completed the trilogy of Final Fantasy XIII games last night.

Lightning Returns is a mostly poor mixup of halfhearted ideas in both story and game mechanisms. The combat has a much faster pace than the previous two games, but there is an excess of abilities and far more schemata (loadout) options than are necessary. Some of the garb/armor choices are humorously goofy, some actually look cool, and some are just stupid; the look doesn't have a correlation with how powerful the garb is, though.

Though I wasn't a fan of the constant ticking clock initially, I've decided that it is a good idea, but the implementation is another example of patchwork. Time's march can be temporarily halted by using an ability called Chronostasis. This requires near constant use in order to accomplish your tasks, as without a walkthrough, there is very little direction. Combat doesn't give you experience points, but does add to the special ability meter which Chronostasis uses, resulting in frantically running around to complete battles not because they make Lightning stronger, but just to hold off a Game Over.

Game Over is somewhat misleading, though, as running out of time still allows you to transfer the progress you did make to a New Game+. Lightning Returns seems to be based on the idea of you failing the first time, as completing about half of the game before NG+ lessens the struggles of quest management from 10 or more in-game days to 4. This is reflected in play time as well; my first, incomplete run occupied 30 hours of my time, but the second took half of that. After all, this time around, you know where all the items are, what's important, and which enemies actually become more powerful in later days. The extreme shift in time resulted in me repeatedly going to an inn for 24 hours to wait the extra NINE days I had before the Final Day, where the confrontation with the boss takes place.

The game is supposed to wrap up loose plot threads and explain a lot of what has gone unexplained from the prior two games, but most of the developments that Lightning discovers after 500 years in "crystal sleep" are either out of nowhere (Snow somehow became the leader of one of the two remaining cities in the world) or nonsensical (all of the minor problems that haven't been solved in half a millennium). At least it comes together in the end, but the journey to that point makes the knotted timeline story of XIII-2 seem simple.

I'm glad I fought through my fading desire to finish this game, as it made the major developments mean more than they would have if I just watched them on Youtube. I wouldn't recommend that people go into XIII with the intent of finishing the trilogy, though.
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65. Video Game: Warlords [Average Rating:7.59 Overall Rank:1317]
Alex
Canada
Saskatoon
Saskatchewan
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Play time: 3 hours
Platform: iOS
First time beaten?: No.

Some thoughts: Warlords for the iPhone is not the original Warlords. Not exactly. But it's close enough to one of my all-time favourite games to be enjoyable.

One of the more notable things about this version is that the AI is like a rabid dog - just raw aggression, and very little defence. Unfortunately, this makes it relatively easy to manipulate, even on higher difficulty settings. In this particular game I played Elvallie, who in the early game crank out large numbers of cheap but good (for their build time) elven archers. They tend to do very poorly in the long run, as they're surrounded by enemies who don't really have anyone else to fight, so they expand early, but slowly get beaten down as they can't defend themselves from all sides at once. In this particular game, however, I got really lucky. The Elvallie are near three other factions - the Sirians, who are by far the weakest in this game; the Orcs of Kor, who are probably the best faction in this game, but are just on the other side of the Sirians and aren't a threat to the elves for a while; and the Storm Giants, who have probably the best strength relative to production time units in their capital, but are otherwise surrounded by really, really bad cities. Because I have four cities that produce cheap elves, whereas the Storm Giants have only one city (their capital) that produces their excellent giants, I moved an elven archer within striking distance of their city, in order to force them to keep some units back, thereby slowing their expansion. Except they didn't slow down - they emptied out their city anyways, leaving it totally undefended from my elven archer, who waltzed in with no opposition. That was a major AI fail, really. All the other cities in that area are garbage, as they mostly produce light infantry, which are not effective and are strictly inferior to my elven archers. The rest of the game took a couple more hours, but it was that event in the first fifteen minutes or so that won me the game by basically taking the Storm Giants out of contention.
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66. Video Game: Last Dream [Average Rating:6.60 Overall Rank:5448]
Alex
Canada
Saskatoon
Saskatchewan
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Play time: Roughly 70 hours (25 in 2017)
Platform: PC (Steam)
First time beaten?: Yes.

Some thoughts: Wow, I really liked this game, and I was playing it obsessively for a few weeks straight. It's basically Final Fantasy: The Extended Remix, with many, many elements familiar to us old Final Fantasy vets (you get a class change from Bahamut. Your first quest at bottom is rescuing someone's daughter from some ancient ruins so that they'll build you a bridge, although a number of the particulars are different from FF1. You build a party of four characters from a variety of classes - six that are obviously FF rehashes in the Last Dream system, and then two more than are unique to this game. And on and on), but it does a lot that is its own, too, and the combination of old and new work well. It feels like a sensible and good evolution of some of what I still find valuable about the original Final Fantasy. Its throwbacks to the original game hit the right amount of nostalgia, while its unique content and interesting mechanics make it its own unique game. Particularly, leveling up is a lot of fun, as leveling up gives you points to increase your stats with, using a point-buy system, and you have a separate pool of skill points you can use to purchase abilities for your characters. Also, there's a lot to explore, and tons of extra side content to mess around with. It's a big game, but at the same time, it isn't so hard that you have to do that side content if it doesn't appeal to you (I skipped the ChocoboMoa races, for example).

My party consisted of a Knight, a Monk, a "Gray" (read: Red) Mage, and a White Mage - my old preferred FF combination. I played the hell out of this game. That's not to say I got all the achievements or whatever, but there isn't much I didn't do. Let me put it this way: there's a number of achievements for being overleveled when you beat the game, ranging from being level 35 through to being, at most, level 70. My lowest level character was level 81, so I was well beyond the point at which they even bothered to give achievements for advancing. And, no surprise, a lot of the game had no challenge for me, as I outleveled the crap out of everything. If I were to do it again, I'd put the difficulty setting higher than normal, and increase the random encounter rate. But that could just be me.

Anyways, if you like NES/ SNES old timey JRPGs generally, and if you like the original Final Fantasy particularly, you should give this a go. It's not perfect, but even at its worst, it's still interesting, and at its best, it's excellent.
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67. Video Game: 80 Days [Average Rating:7.52 Overall Rank:1419]
Alex
Canada
Saskatoon
Saskatchewan
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Play time: 2.5 hours
Platform: PC (Steam)
First time beaten?: No.

Some thoughts: 80 Days is basically an interactive Steampunk choose-your-own-adventure version of Jules Verne's Around the World in 80 Days, with some slight resource management. ...That's a trite but accurate description of what is really a rich game and setting coupled with some just excellent writing, however. There's oodles to explore, an incredible amount of variety, tons of possible routes, lots of choices to make. However, this strength is also a weakness - there's so many choices and so much content that it's not always clear what I'm choosing between, why I should choose one option over another, and there's so much content (and some of it changes each time through), so that past playthroughs don't provide any real guidance about what to do the next time. Each choice is kind of a roll of the dice or a stab in the dark. I don't feel I have a lot of agency as a player. And when I play games like this to explore, having minimal control over my exploration is a non-trivial downside. It's nice to see the different things the game has to offer, but at the same time, the choices feel kind of meaningless. Similarly, while the writing is incredible, the game itself isn't always gripping, so that when a decision goes poorly or I don't know what to do, I find myself sometimes just giving up on it. I think the game as a kind of artistic endeavour is astounding, and so I put it on my HC challenge list to force me to play it again, but as a game it's just good but not great.

This is my second time beating the game. I planned to check out Africa, since it's so clearly out of the way that I wondered why it was an option to go to at all, and I didn't actually expect to succeed in getting around the world in a timely fashion. But I ended up running into a certain other Verne character (a fellow in possession of a fine and wondrous submarine) and I arrived in Jakarta in short order. I had real money problems this time out, having to borrow $3,000 from the bank, and sleeping rough more often than I (and, more importantly, Mr. Fogg) appreciated, but I sold an item in San Francisco that got my money back and then some. What's more, I got around the world in under 70 days, besting my previous record, despite some milling around in Africa, Europe, and Asia Minor. As I've said, I like the game, but it isn't perfect. It's worth checking out, though. And, that's two HC Challenge games down! Exciting.
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68. Video Game: Freddi Fish and the Case of the Missing Kelp Seeds [Average Rating:6.50 Unranked]
Matt Utting
Australia
Preston
Victoria
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Platform: PC
Time taken: 1 hour
First time?: Yes

There aren't too many puzzles in this one, much of the game seems to be 'remember how to get to this place?' (which my almost 5 year old daughter couldn't).

On the positive side, all of the exits are clearly signposted as such, though they don't indicate where they lead (with signposts)

There's a nice mini game where it asks you maths problems which was nice.

Not the best Humoungus game we've played so far, possibly the worst?
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69. Video Game: Elder Sign: Omens [Average Rating:7.71 Overall Rank:276] [Average Rating:7.71 Unranked]
Adam
United States
Tempe
Arizona
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"We are plain quiet folk and have no use for adventures. Nasty disturbing uncomfortable things! Make you late for dinner! I can't think what anybody sees in them."
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Platform: Android Phone
Time: Untracked / Many hours
First time beaten? No.

So after having some fun with a randomly picked party v.s. the Dark Pharaoh, I decided to challenge myself to beat every ancient one at least once with a randomly picked party, and finally finished it today! The two toughest were Azathoth and (obviously) Ithaqua, who took me by far longer than anyone else.

This is a great adaptation, and has me eager to play my physical copy again. I'll continue to play this from time to time for fun, but I think I can now consider it well and thoroughly beaten.
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70. Video Game: Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer [Average Rating:7.88 Overall Rank:153] [Average Rating:7.88 Unranked]
Andy W
United States
Wheatfield
New York
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Platform: iPod Touch
Time: 6.5 hours
First Time: No*

For Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer (w/ Ascension: Return of the Fallen expansion) I'm considering it beaten.

Playing against the AI, the game ended with all cards in my deck (heroes, constructs, and monsters) - opponents and draw pile had no cards. I was lucky and setup the "infinite turn loop" on the first try, then had some poor luck with getting some key cards while cycling through, along with a bug in the game, making it take longer than it probably should have (6.5 hours). End game score - 6995.



*First time "beating" the game with all cards, but not first time beating the AI. I've setup the infinite turn loop previously, but never tried to collect all cards as I would previously go for most points. In the past, since I would play this loop over many days, the game would eventually crash and I'd never see the final scoring; thankfully that wasn't the case this time.
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71. Video Game: Mirror's Edge [Average Rating:7.18 Overall Rank:481]
Simon Woodward
New Zealand
Hamilton
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Game: Mirror's Edge.
Platform: PS3.
First Time: No, second.
Difficulty: Easy.
Time Taken: 8:00 hours, perhaps.
Completion: Main story completed.


My first completed game of 2017. Have been looking forward to playing this again for a long time, and I enjoyed it a lot. Yes it can been extremely frustrating at times, but I still like it. This time I didn't shoot any enemies, and got the "Test of Faith" achievement

I thought of looking for all the bags too, but I don't enjoy exploring when being shot at.
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72. Video Game: Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:747]
Sicaria Occaeco
United States
Salt Lake City
Utah
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Platform: PC
Times Beaten: 1
Time Played: 72h (27h in 2017)
Enjoyment: Good


Amalur is basically a solo World of Warcraft. People who say it's not are lying to themselves. The game has some fun combat. Some of the lore and setting is pretty good. You don't need to restart to try different classes/builds as at any time you can reset your skills. I went with a Rogue (finesse) build with daggers. I didn't like the faeblades. Stealth was mostly useless as most mobs have someone facing at least each direction. It came in handy some situations but not as much I would have liked. Money and gear isn't really hard to come by at all and that makes the game a bit easy. The combat is fun though although I would have liked to see more variety in encounters. There are a lot of bugs and lots of issues with broken quests or things that can lock you out of completing different ones. I had to go back 3 hours to a previous save because the main quest line got bugged. If I didn't have that save I would have quit the game instead of starting over. It's a fun enjoyable game but for as much money that went into it then it should have been a lot better polished. Apparently it was suppose to be a mmo but had some development and/or financial issues and turned into a single player game and it shows. The inventory system is terrible but at least it was easy to mark things to junk vendor.

Glad I played it and I did enjoy the combat but there are better games than this one, specifically Shadows of Mordor. Not one I would play again but one I would recommend.
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73. Video Game: Odallus: The Dark Call [Average Rating:5.71 Overall Rank:6353]
Kennan Ward
United States
Idaho
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Completed: Odallus: The Dark Call
Platform: PC

Indiegogo funded action platformer. Metroidvania elements with upgrades and better equipment to find and equipment and abilities needed to access certain areas. You can get a dash, double jump, ability to fall slowly, better swords, and better armor that can allow you to use some magic abilities. Axes, spears, and torches act as secondary weapons. Some great art, good gameplay, references to other action platforms during gameplay like Mega Man X and Donkey Kong and some strange ones in the dialogue and story scenes like Highlander and Blade Runner and a boss fight that was similar to something from R-Type.

https://twitter.com/Legolas_Katarn/status/818677005918998528
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74. Video Game: Battlefield 3 [Average Rating:7.79 Overall Rank:269]
 
Derek Green
United States
Columbus
Ohio
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Platform: Xbox 360
First Time Beaten
Campaign Completion Time: ~7:00
Difficulty: Normal
Enjoyment: Moderately High
Rating: 6.5/10


Having enjoyed the Battlefield: Bad Company games, I had very high hopes for this game, which most people I know praise very highly. I must admit that I am somewhat disappointed, even though I know that Battlefield always focuses on the multiplayer and that the single-player campaign is not the heart of the game. Still, I was somewhat surprised that the game was even more linear than Battlefield: Bad Company 2 without the smoothness. The graphics in the game are mostly very good, but even after downloading the 1.5 GB graphics package, I still found that some enemies in the distance literally pop into view. There are also a surprisingly high number of minor glitches for a Triple-A title. Just like the COD games but unlike the Bad Company games for the most part, there are lots of sequences that you are expected to play in very specific ways and will have to redo time and again to beat, a feature of this genre that I do not particularly like. The story is a little grittier than a COD game and the narrative structure is pretty good for a FPS, even if the narrative leaves a lot of basic questions unanswered in a way that suggests editorial oversight rather than immersive tunnel-vision. All things considered, this game is on par with the Modern Warfare games and I really wish that there had been vehicular combat, since Battlefield has historically done an excellent job of creating good control schemes for aircraft and tanks and those missions were among the best that this game had to offer.
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75. Video Game: SteamWorld Dig [Average Rating:6.93 Overall Rank:1497]
Rudy
United States
No too far from Philly
Pennsylvania
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Another recommendation down. This one took 6 hours.

It reminds me of a flash game I played years ago called Motherload. It was OK for what it was.

Platform: PC/Steam
Time: 6 hours
Rating: 7/10
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