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Random GOG Giveaway: Requiem: Avenging Angel (1999)

Requiem: Avenging Angel (1999)

Another free game while I'm away!

This one this time. One copy's available here - redeem or share. ;)

Speak more in the new month yeah?

Random GOG Giveaway: King's Bounty: The Legend (2008)

A free game while I'm away!

This one. One copy's available here - redeem or share. ;)

Random GOG Giveaway: Eschalon: Book II (2010)

Eschalon: Book II (2010)

How'd you like a free copy of this good title? First come first get! ;)

Have a grand adventure you lucky recipient you! Enjoy.

Venetica - First Impressions

It's good to try new things.

I was feeling somewhat apathetic and low the other day. On the grind, and the gruel of life and all. On not having been outside in a while maybe. Kept in by the rain that kept pattering the windows - something I feel is calming when I'm in a better place and state of mind. Summer's coming up and I'm not done with all, or content with all, time wanders as my mind does...

I intended to jump into a game I'd played before initially.

I pondered Serious Sam. I've been recording runthrough's of the first two encounters that I'll be uploading eventually, but it just didn't feel... fun.

I skimmed through the list of games I own on GOG in search of something that seemed better. Something that'd distract me enough. Something with an imaginative world I could truly escape into for a moment or two. Alan Wake lured, but I've played it before, and I wasn't really looking for horror.

I've had a few games bookmarked there for a while now; intending to play.

There's Mirror's Edge - that parkour action game that reminds me a bit of Oni - which I love. Saint's Row 2 - which is a clear rip-off on the GTA games of the time - which I love. Sudeki - a more family-friendly kind of adventure. And Jade Empire, and Konung - games both one and two (Konung = King in Swedish)... but Konung didn't feel simple enough. I started pondering Diablo 2 instead. But that too felt overly complicated to get into.

And then there was Venetica, a hack and slash adventure that at least visually looked pretty promising...

I started watching trailers. Then screenshots. I skimmed through all those aforementioned games again, but wasn't sure any one really would let me get away as well as I wanted to. And then I started checking filesizes, since download speed is limited, and I did not want to wait too long, and Venetica was maybe the most promising of the contenders I still pondered in that regard. Konung was though smaller out of the picture, and Saint's Row felt a bit over-the-top, so Venetica it was...

And what a game Venetica was! So far. I chose right. I really got away. I played just two hours but it felt like much longer. In a good way.

I went to bed feeling content, and relaxed, and enveloped in the mysteries of the monsters and assassins of San Pasquale - a fictional mountainside town, and the comfort of companionship, the armor of love, the subtle grind and discovery, the winding pathways, and puzzles, the simple and noble sword-to-sword combat, the steep ravines and edges that for some reason you couldn't jump down, the pros and cons and the beautiful Venice lingering beyond the long bridge and pond...

So far I'm high on this one. It's lively. It's lovely.

The main character's lovely too. She copes with her tragic loss admirably - as do the rest of the villagers - who you can sometimes drag a couple assassins towards if you need some help fighting them.

You can hone your skills, you can battle and level up, you can learn new things, you can traverse the path between life and death with an intriguing kind of twilight energy - and you speak to a stranger that reminds me of the mysterious one in Dishonored - which I was actually considering playing again whenst looking for a game now too.

The character enhancements, the items, the pick-ups and missions are simple, but seemingly plentiful. The world so far is small, but with a promise that it'll grow, and it seems I'll soon be at the big city, just a couple hours into the game...

The visuals aren't totally up-to-date, but they're good enough, movements feel more outdated than the visuals. The characters are expressive, rich in personality and beauty, and the sceneries are a fantasy.

It's not all utopian but it definitely is adventurous, wild and wonderful, and exactly the kind of game world I was hoping to get lost in for a while as I traverse my ongoing existential crisis/off-spring Spring and figure things out otherwise.

The game menu's a little basic. The transition effects and sounds are an odd choice. First impressions get lowered straight away, but once you get into the game itself it's amazing.

I wish there was a quicksave feature, and for a while I wish I could jump - I get over that though, and it does seem like the game saves automatically at key locations. When you enter new places maybe. Not sure yet.

It seems like saves are possibly a feature you don't even have to worry about. I've died a few times so far, but thanks to that mysterious twilight energy I haven't stayed dead yet, I'm starting to wonder if you ever do, might find out soon...

I appreciate how there's no superfluous words or grind involved in the game either thus far - though plenty of interactions. Both interface and story seems perfected. You pick up items, loot, trade, upgrade, hone yourself and learn a little along the way, but it's never excessive. It's easy to get into. It's homely. It's familiar and fun but also a real fantasy.

It's an adventure, pure and simple. Another age. Another face. An intriguing world and story thus far.

Might not have much more time to play right now, but I'm looking forward to jumping into this world and venture once again soon.

Venetica - it's a boon.

6 Anticipated Game Sequels 2023

Here are six games I'm really looking forward to this year!

Had intended to write up a way more in-depth post about 'em, but this shall suffice, before the year's over or they're out.

They're all either story-wise a sequel, or part of a bigger; ongoing franchise.

In order of anticipation...

  1. Alan Wake 2
  2. Advance Wars™ 1+2: Re-Boot Camp
  3. RoboCop: Rogue City
  4. Diablo 4
  5. Metal Slug Tactics
  6. Pokémon Sleep

I've played plentiful prequels for all of these but RoboCop.

RoboCop: Rogue City

With RoboCop I just loved the movies. The early ones. And it seems they're bringing back the grittiest; greatest aesthetic they had with this particular game.

There have been RoboCop games in the past, but apart from the one that came out along with the last movie (which was not like the old movies) they've all been platformers, and both visually and functionally very basic.

This is new. This is both shoot-em-up and cinematic experience all in one. A game that both plays on the movies and seems to stay true, truly.

Alan Wake 2

I played through Alan Wake recently, and it was great, but ended disappointingly. Without resolution - though maybe that's the only way a good horror game can end. It certainly left a lasting impression.

I'm hoping the sequel remedies that end though! Or if naught else provides a similarly dark, dreamy and exhilarating experience.

Advance Wars™ 1+2: Re-Boot Camp

I've spent way too much time on the portable Advance Wars games for GBA and NDS. After that the franchise kind of ran into the mud, jumping to both the wrong form and the wrong visual style; interfaces.

The last truly good one came out in 2005. I'm hoping this is the reboot that spectacular story-based strategy game deserves.

Metal Slug Tactics

The old Metal Slug games were awesome. Visually so meticulous. Functionally so scrappy and fun to play.

Haven't kept up with the franchise but I'd like to try this one too.

Diablo 4

I have fond memories of Diablo 2 in particular - don't think I've played neither the first nor the third.

They recently came out with a remake on the second one - hands down the most popular (and thus possibly best one) of all - and one that hasn't been easy to play the original version of with modern hardware.

Since the remake I have a feeling maybe they've been going back to origins a bit, and maybe this one will evoke a similar sensation of grand, gritty adventure and grind. If so definitely worth a play then too.

Pokémon Sleep

As for Pokémon Sleep? Well I like Pokémon. It's a fun idea. The first true idle game for a console? Don't think I'll play this one but it's definitely interesting.

Let's see if any of these actually make it out this year though for starters!

And that none succumb to the budgetary restrictions or production issues that lead to some games not seeing the light of day they're intended to. But these are all big names so...

Here's hoping that doesn't happen to any of these.

Looking forward.

The Shovel Problem

This is about TaskMaker. *in booming voice with excessive reverb*

Where to find a shovel? Can you buy a shovel? Can you kill somebody for a shovel? Would any kind of vicious foe wield one in the latter stages of the game? Maybe in the King's Tomb - at the dawn of all adventure - right before the end of the game?

Cause I'm out of shovels. I have no shovel. And certain things in this game you cannot get without one, I believe.

I sold one, cause I had two at one point. Maybe even three.

The one in the graveyard was easy to find.

They had one in one of the first levels too.

Was there another? I'm pretty sure there was at least one more...

Then suddenly I'm entirely out of shovels, and no matter where I go it doesn't seem there are more of them lying around.

I've tried all shops. I've tried the garden, I've made it through a few more tasks. I'm at the Fierce Fold now, and there are still a few locations I've yet to venture to or explore fully - at least one which I cannot gain access to until the very end of the game - but I'd really like a shovel NOW, before I forget where I need to use it. Some treasures need some digging up...

There are at least a few spots in the garden, by the grave.

There are a bunch of graves in that sinking village too.

There may have been some soft sand in that strange village with all the smiley faces...

Maybe elsewhere too.

I think I dug my way through all of the sandy areas in the first two villages at least, when I still had a shovel to spare. Maybe the first three. Not sure I explored the silver place fully. I even found a place to dig up in the outside world, at that sandy expanse towards the top of the map.

But now I'm out of shovels, and I can find no more to aid me in my task.

My god. Be careful with the shovels y'all.

Don't sell any unless you have to.

And you don't have to.

Big mistake.

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