29 September 2014: What video games did you play this past week?
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It is time again to share with us all what video games you played this past week! What video games have you been playing?

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What Videogames did you play this weekend: WVGDYPTW subscription thread

Check out these other great VGG geeklists!

Videogames New To You September 2014
Videogames Beaten by VGGers in 2014
Video Games Ambivalently Continued by VGGers in 2014
Video Games Abandoned by VGGers in 2014

RPG tabletop players, how did your sessions go this past week?
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1. Video Game: The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword [Average Rating:8.03 Overall Rank:164] [Average Rating:8.03 Unranked]
Video Game: The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
Simon Woodward
New Zealand
Hamilton
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Well, I tried to get back into Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, but didn't last long. So I fell back to Skyward Sword. The Zelda gameplay is relaxing, even if the story isn't as compelling as in previous games.

I did get 37 in the bamboo chopping minigame!
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2. Video Game: Wasteland 2 [Average Rating:7.61 Overall Rank:724]
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North Adams
Massachusetts
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Man is this game good. Wasteland 2 should be the benchmark for franchise reboots and how to do them right. So often, when a beloved franchise of yesteryear gets a new game, one of two things is the result:

1) The game is pretty cool, and has the same theme as the original, but is wholly different in most other ways, and has completely replaced all your classic gameplay with something else. (See: Fallout)

2) The game is faithful to the original to a fault, the big fault being that the original was sort of clunky and it's now many years later so they should have made this shit a lot less cumbersome, but chose direct adaptation over quality.

Wasteland 2 manages to thread the needle and avoid both of these traps. All that good classic Fallout-type gameplay is there, but they've gotten rid of all the agonizingly slow annoying clunkiness. This is just pure old-school fun. The skill-use system is great. Assigning skill points is great. Making decisions that matter and effect the world is great. This game is great, and anyone else playing should post their parties in the Post Your Party thread.

I am looking forward to playing more.
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3. Video Game: Wasteland 2 [Average Rating:7.61 Overall Rank:724]
Video Game: Wasteland 2
Luke Stirling
Norway
Trondheim
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What Seth says, and then some. This is my singularly favourite RPG released in the last 15 years. Right now, the only thing that beats it is Planescape: Torment, and even then, I'm only a fraction of the way through Wasteland 2. If it turns out to have a killer story arc to tie all the rest of it together, this may well end up being my favourite RPG of all time.

It's a tough final hurdle to mount though. Torment has been king for so long, and the things it does right are the most challenging things for the video game medium to get right. Still, I am super enthused by every moment of Wasteland 2 so far. Even if it doesn't have a story to top Torment's, it's still such a good game from moment to moment that I unreservedly give it a 10 right now.
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4. Video Game: Defense Grid 2 [Average Rating:6.71 Overall Rank:5004] [Average Rating:6.71 Unranked]
Video Game: Defense Grid 2
Luke Stirling
Norway
Trondheim
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My only regret right now is that I am having to juggle my time between two genre defining games at once. Defense Grid has long been my favourite tower defence game. So far, DG2 is better in almost every respect.

The last week has been amongst the best weeks of gaming for me, ever.
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5. Video Game: Thomas Was Alone [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:733]
Video Game: Thomas Was Alone
Steve S
United States
Roscoe
Illinois
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Picked up another Humble Bundle this week.

Thomas was Alone is an amazingly well done platformer game starring a series of rectangular shapes.
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6. Video Game: Transistor [Average Rating:7.72 Overall Rank:466]
Video Game: Transistor
Twinge
United States
Colorado
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Day 1, Day 2

Good game, enjoyed it. Not blown away, but do recommend it.
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7. Video Game: Card City Nights [Average Rating:6.48 Overall Rank:4707] [Average Rating:6.48 Unranked]
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Australia
Ashfield
NSW
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This is strange and compelling. It's a single player CCG, with no multiplayer, DLC or in-app purchases. So you are just playing a CGG against the AI. But, it is also the sequel to Ittle Dew, with the same art style and characters and so on. The gameplay is a more refined and more surreal take on Triple Triad from the Final Fantasy games.

This week I also finished Thomas Was Alone finally, and solved a couple more levels of the excellent puzzle game Great Permutator.
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8. Video Game: Gauntlet (2014) [Average Rating:7.13 Overall Rank:1663]
Video Game: Gauntlet (2014)
M@tthijs
Netherlands
Venlo
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23-99 Gautlet was released. I believe this was my first time I actually played a game on the day it was released. Next day, I played again, this time with Grimwold and Tickmanfan.

My review is here: Kael's preliminary review of Gauntlet
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9. Video Game: Etrian Odyssey III: The Drowned City [Average Rating:8.24 Overall Rank:1393]
Video Game: Etrian Odyssey III: The Drowned City
Ian S.
Canada
Saskatoon
Saskatchewan
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Played more of this than GTAV, I'd wager. Finally got tired of the level grind and gave that 2nd Stratum Boss another go and finally beat him. It got pretty dicey in the end, but I prevailed AND had every party member alive to receive some EXP. At first all of my status effects were hitting him and none of his were sticking on me, but this boss doesn't ramp it up till he's around 1/3 health left...then it was game time. All of his attacks were hitting and I was just playing the "stay alive" game. I probably wasted a ton of turns just reeling from a sudden near party kill moment (that happened a couple of times).
Now that that is dealt with, I've unlocked a few new areas to mess around in, which will unlock some new side quests and such. Might mess around with the new sub-class option. Thinking that a Hoplite/Ninja could be pretty crazy: Hoplite is the bodyguard/defense/tank class, and ninjas can make a copy of themselves in the empty unit space. We'll see.

Grand Theft Auto V...is a game that I played this week as well. I always forget how annoying it is to drive across the entire map to get to an objective. I found some piece to a letter which is part of some random "solve this murder" story. There's an excessive number of letter pieces to find, and this game world is so full of useless crap that I doubt I'll ever find everything without cheating. It feels so dense that it's like they don't want you to explore or something. I climbed a few ladders to building roofs and there's nothing there. Explored some interesting alleyways and parking garages and found nothing... I want to find stuff! The closer to realistic games get, the less fun they are for me.
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10. Video Game: Road Rash (1991/8 bit systems) [Average Rating:7.06 Overall Rank:2445]
Video Game: Road Rash (1994/32-bit systems)
A. Power
United States
Mount Airy
Maryland
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Well not the original Road Rash, but the Early Access edition of it's spiritual successor, Road Redemption. My $15 Kickstarter investment matured a little earlier than expected (and awkwardly enough after just getting Wasteland 2). I'm having a blast with this one. It's a nice fun break from reality, when you're hard pressed for time. Nothing better than kicking a biker off balance and into oncoming traffic, except maybe planting some C4 on an aggressive police car. Still a bit rough around the edges, but I'm liking what I see. Actually played through the entire Early Access content in just a couple of sessions. Which is nice, since I have some W2 to play!
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11. Video Game: Sniper Elite V2 [Average Rating:6.86 Overall Rank:2611]
Video Game: Sniper Elite V2
Rudy
United States
No too far from Philly
Pennsylvania
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Sniper Elite V2 - I accidentally spooked this guy I was supposed to assassinate, so he went running for it. As he was going down some concrete steps, I took 3-4 quick shots at him, paying attention to the delay and location of bullet holes in the wall, before I popped his skull open. The headshot was from about 275 meters away. The bullet cam of his death pleased me.

Super Crate Box - This one of those filler games that I like to play at 5-10 minutes at a time. Your job is to collect crates, that will give you a random weapon, which you will use to destroy enemies on a single screen. You score is based upon how many crates you can collect in one life. You died when you touch and enemy or fall into the pit at the bottom. The enemies start from the top and work their way to the bottom. If they fall into the pit at the bottom, they start at the top of the screen but are now twice as fast. It reminds me a little of original Mario Bros on Atari. Not bad for a 23MB game that's free.

Risk of Rain - Played a little bit with Alex and we had fun with it. It's probably not something I will play solo though.
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12. Video Game: Metroid Prime 3: Corruption [Average Rating:7.90 Overall Rank:294]
Video Game: Metroid Prime 3: Corruption
Simon Woodward
New Zealand
Hamilton
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Getting my MP fix. Veteran difficulty.
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13. Video Game: Dead Space 2 [Average Rating:7.95 Overall Rank:178]
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Indiana
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Been playing a mix of Dead Space 2 and Transformers: Fall of Cybertron.

Dead Space 2: I'm about a third of the way in. I'm enjoying it... although somewhat begrudgingly. Virtually everything about the game is identical to the original Dead Space, and all of the marginal changes are for the worse. So, on the one hand, it's very good, because the original was very good. But it's also very annoying, because it fails to improve on the original in any way, and all of its minor revisions are misguided. I hate that all of the standard enemies are faster. The last thing Dead Space needed was hints of twitch combat. Some rooms and gear are only available if your system has a save from Dead Space: Ignition (metacritic score of 36, lol). The protagonist is no longer silent, but is so generic and underdeveloped that I'd rather he said nothing at all. There's barely any story to speak of (I mean seriously, how is this not low hanging fruit after Dead Space 1). Audio and text logs aren't as interesting. Movement is slightly worse. Zero G is slightly worse. It's easier to waste health items by accident. There's no map. A trivial hacking minigame has been added that is totally out of place. Stasis is even less integrated into the game than it was before. There's absurd mandatory stomping of corpses to reveal loot. And for the love of god, there are unskippable cutscenes - some placed right after checkpoints but before a major fight.

People think this is better than Dead Space 1??

Fall of Cybertron: Pretty far along in this one. I like that is has nothing to do with Michael Bay's movies. The visual style and animation are actually quite remarkable, at least most of the time. Not thrilled that the game has locked up the entire PS3 twice already.

Second half is better than the first. Decepticons more fun to play than Autobots. Shallow and inoffensive as an action game... with the one obvious missed opportunity being the economy / weapon upgrade system, which is mostly for show.
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14. Video Game: Orcs Must Die! 2 [Average Rating:7.40 Overall Rank:700]
Video Game: Orcs Must Die! 2
Andrew Hodkinson
Canada
Owen Sound
Ontario
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Played some of this and even tried a little co-op with Kael for a few minutes before supper. I find some of the scenarios pretty difficult for survival let alone perfection.

Played a little Mini Metro which has a newish interface. I forgot when they said the new version comes out.

In Stronghold Kingdoms for some reason I'm helping guide a new faction into picking up villages by cracking some and capping others and passing them along. There's a war going on between two houses that contain friends in each and I'm finding it unsettling. I may have become too outspoken about my feelings to random people on the map. Might have to go into teamspeak today to explain myself.
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15. Video Game: Company of Heroes 2 [Average Rating:7.60 Overall Rank:1322]
Video Game: Company of Heroes 2
Agent J
United States
Coldwater
Michigan
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He's looking real sharp in his 1940's fedora. He's got nerves of steel, an iron will, and several other metal-themed attributes. His fur is water tight and he's always up for a fight.
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I picked up the Western Armies for $6.66 a bit ago, great buy, and now I'm loving the American armies. I played a game as the Russians with Benston and did terribly. But I've figured out why. Apparently, the tactical map is terrible on some resolutions, but with a new monitor and new resolution, what was a tiny map that was barely bigger than the mini-map has become a map large enough to read, so I can use it again. I used it in Company of Heroes pretty much all the time, to set up the opening and such. Now I can do the same thing with COH2... queuing units to take points is key.

We won the game against the 4 easy AIs but it took way too much effort. I think I could do better now, so I hope to get another chance. But I'd rather be the Americans than the Russians now. I don't mind the Russians - I know about what to do with them. Conscripts and speed and build build build. Lots of units and upgrade them.

The Americans have the same thing going with the riflemen, but upgrades are to individual units and cost to research and then to equip as well, but I have little to do with munitions anyway.
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16. Video Game: Guild Wars 2 [Average Rating:7.65 Overall Rank:468]
Video Game: Guild Wars 2
Kevin J
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
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Thanks to my whining, I've got a bunch of VGGers playing Guild Wars 2 during the free week-long trial. So far I've played with Seth and Luke, Amy and Adam, and all five of us at once at one point! I also ran into Anthony, but it was late and I only got to see his badass sword before logging out. I also did a fair bit of solo play, going through my character's "personal story".

As far as MMOs go, I feel like this is cream of the crop. You don't need to talk to people to activate or turn in quests -- just wander around until you find something to do! Even exploring and resource collection grant XP, so it doesn't feel like a waste of time to wander around. The loot and inventory management is really pared down (though I'm used to playing ARPGs like Path of Exile), and you can change your skills any time you're not in combat by switching weapons, so you don't have to worry about making a character choice that you can't take back (as I read somewhere, the choice you should spend the most time on for your character is probably which hairstyle to take). It's been a long time since I have played online multiplayer with people, and I'm really thankful for how smoothly it seems to have gone playing this game with people.

Of course, it's still an MMO. On its own, it is a laundry list to be cleared over the course of hundreds of hours of play. I approach just about every combat situation the same way, using the same skills in the same order, occasionally switching to my other weapon for my own benefit to mix things up. It's there to accommodate hanging out with friends, and it does that pretty admirably.

For the record, it's very different from its predecessor in terms of game mechanics, but it still feels like it has the same ethos as the first game.


Earlier this week, I was able to return to Dragon Age 2 and finish off the first act. I'm generally enjoying it, even though I'm generally playing it in a pretty rote manner (controlling only my main character who only has a smattering of skills to use), but I think it helps me just zone out and relax on the couch. I can see how someone approaching it with a different expectation could be disappointed. I wound up getting a full set of related armor pieces ("X of the Fallen"), which is something I rarely see happen in games. I guess since this is a single player game, it's probably fixed so that you'll eventually get all of the pieces. On the one hand, I have a really nice set of armor, but on the other hand I doubt I will find anything worth breaking up the set for a loooong time, so I won't be looking forward to treasure drops for a while.
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17. Video Game: Company of Heroes 2 [Average Rating:7.60 Overall Rank:1322]
Video Game: Company of Heroes 2
Thomas Eager
United States
Portland
Oregon
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arrrh Not much gamin' this week, but I did try out skirmishing as the Russians, the last one with Jythier in a bloody comp-stomp in the Vire River Valley (a revamped map from the original CoH that I downloaded from the Steam Workshop). A rough guess at our vehicular kills: 1 Tiger, 4-5 Panzer IVs, 5-6 Stug IIIs, 3-4 Wirbelwinds, 2 Scout Cars, and 2 or 3 Halftracks. Infantry and support weapons beyond counting. It essentially took us three successive waves of attackers to finish off the pesky Krauts.
Played a bit of Deadlight, now dodging minigun equipped choppers on the rooftops. arrrh

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18. Video Game: Company of Heroes 2 [Average Rating:7.60 Overall Rank:1322]
Video Game: Company of Heroes 2
Well, I played a few big 4v4 map with some standard AI's opposing and Easy on my side, so I had to do all the heavy work. There wasn't a part of the middle of the map that wasn't completely flattened by artillery and constant explosions. It was like playing in a Michael Bay film! laugh

I played as both Wehrmacht and US.

(Also, I was lucky to be chosen as the VGG of the Week this week. http://videogamegeek.com/thread/1243809/vggeek-week-177-sean... )
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19. Video Game: Wasteland 2 [Average Rating:7.61 Overall Rank:724]
Video Game: Wasteland 2
A. Power
United States
Mount Airy
Maryland
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Microbadge: The Police fanMicrobadge: Video gamer since the 70'sMicrobadge: 5 Year Geek VeteranMicrobadge: Golden Video Game CollectorMicrobadge: Somebody get this freakin' duck away from me!
I got to sink some time into this finally. I played several hours each night over the weekend and have yet to finish the first real mission. This game makes you feel like your decisions have very real consequences. The combat is nice, although I wish there was a way to set a formation. There were some exploding enemies that were causing havoc because my Rangers were too bunched up. Even worse, my rookies' lack of marksmanship were creating too many uses of first aid kits due to friendly fire. The quests are cool so far, giving some choices on how to deal with different situations. They've incorporated some creative ways to make all of the skills useful for something. I liked that may standard sniper/ranger/scout character, that I always roll up in CRPGs, actually got to use his Outdoorsman skill early on to help out. The writing is good, and the various references sprinkled throughout are quite entertaining
Spoiler (click to reveal)
(I found a copy of Computer Gaming World, Issue #52- Wasteland was named "Adventure Game of the Year '88" in that issue).
The attention to detail is surprising. Again, the choices that you make along the way appear to have some immediate consequences. I'm enjoying the ride so far, and expect to replay this one when I'm done.

Edit: added a spoiler tag to something minor
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20. Video Game: Civilization V: Brave New World [Average Rating:8.39 Overall Rank:79] [Average Rating:8.39 Unranked]
Video Game: Civilization V: Brave New World
p55carroll
United States
Minnesota
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‘Well, at any rate, the Dormouse said—’ the Hatter went on, looking anxiously round to see if he would deny it too: but the Dormouse denied nothing, being fast asleep. ‘After that,’ continued the Hatter, ‘I cut some more bread-and-butter—’"
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"‘But what did the Dormouse say?’ one of the jury asked. ‘That I can’t remember,’ said the Hatter."
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Microbadge: CaliforniaMicrobadge: I love solo gaming!Microbadge: Master of Orion fanMicrobadge: VGG: Turn Based Games fanMicrobadge: Minnesota
Still just sitting around playing this by myself. Trying to get my money's worth out of the expansions I bought, I guess.

I've been simply going through all the new-to-me civilizations, seeing if one plays much differently than another. The last game I finished was as Brazil (a boring game where I just expanded into a dominant position, kept peace with everybody around me, and eventually won a diplomatic victory). Now I'm playing as Morocco.

Because I got bored last time, I decided to play this game on King level (a notch up for me). It was going very well until this morning. Though I was a little behind in tech, I had more money than I could spend; my people were very happy, and all the city-states were my allies. Furthermore, I had made my ideology (Order) the world ideology and my religion (Judaism) the world religion. Just for fun, I provoked the two runner-up powers--Egypt and the Iroquois--to fight each other. I thought I had the game in the bag.

But just before I had to leave for work this morning, everybody else suddenly declared war on me. It's about 1990, and I got that far without a single war. Now I'm in a world war, whether I like it or not, and I haven't prepared for one. I belatedly upgraded all my garrison units, but I'll be in trouble if my enemies make a concerted effort.
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21. Video Game: Assassin's Creed: Revelations [Average Rating:7.56 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.56 Unranked]
Video Game Compilation: Assassin's Creed: Revelations
Alex
Canada
Saskatoon
Saskatchewan
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Finished off my game of this. It ended abruptly - I thought I still had a ways to go, and then suddenly it was over in the least of all satisfying ways. I had hoped this game would be conclusive in some respect, as I have no real desire to play ACIII.

Also played a demo version of Abyss Odyssey. I was very impressed by the art of the game, but the game was more work than I wanted to put into it, so after 45 minutes or so I shut it down.

And played FTL: Faster Than Light with the enhanced content for the first time. I'd been trying to fire up Persona 4 on the PS2, but apparently the PS2 AV cord went missing when we moved in February, so that is not so good. But FTL was great. That mind control of the last boss is annoying, and I failed to deal with it appropriately, going down in a blaze of... something. Probably not glory.
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22. Video Game: Mass Effect 2 [Average Rating:8.59 Overall Rank:9] [Average Rating:8.59 Unranked]
Video Game: Mass Effect 2
It's V-Y not V-R
United States
Alabama
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Other than a round of Star Realms and a few matches of Guilty Gear X2, this was my only game of the week. I'm ok with that.

I'm enjoying where the story is going even more than in the first game. There are more shades of grey in interactions with others, and though I still mostly favor the Paragon path, some Renegade points have slipped in every once in a while. Maybe my "coworkers" are to blame for me not taking the squeaky-clean route all the time, but at the same time, working with people who aren't clear-cut good guys makes my Big Damn Hero actions stand out even more. I have six of the available crewmembers, and they all have pretty interesting stories to tell that I will keep bugging them about in between missions.
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23. Video Game: Diablo III: Reaper of Souls [Average Rating:7.96 Overall Rank:289] [Average Rating:7.96 Unranked]
Video Game: Diablo III: Reaper of Souls
Ronster Zero
United States
California
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Got this late last week and have been playing it pretty much straight through.

It's hack/slash, level up, get gear, and repeat. Still, some good mindless fun to be had and im enjoying my 1st play through.
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24. Video Game: FTL: Faster Than Light [Average Rating:7.87 Overall Rank:105]
Video Game: FTL: Faster Than Light
Chris
United States
Chicago
Illinois
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Aside from Rock Band 3 I played a ton of FTL this week. In which I discovered, I am Terrible at it. I beat easy with relative ease, but keep getting whooped some good on Normal.

I might play a little more easy though. I did pretty good with an interesting game of Normal where I sold my weapons to pick up a crew transporter in the ship you unlock for beating the game (and even got an awesome powered up engi to run a lot of it) but eventually I got whooped pretty good, and I barely got out of like the third sector on the game. Did normal actually get harder, or am I just out of practice?
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