Game Completion 2018 #42 – Octopath Traveler

  • Game: Octopath Traveler
  • Platform: Switch
  • Developer: Square Enix & Acquire
  • Publisher: Nintendo

Octopath Traveler is a terrific game, but I have some reservations about the plot structure that I’ll address in Episode 45 of the Switch Focus Podcast.

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Game Completion 2018 #41 – Pokémon X

  • Game: Pokémon X
  • Platform: 3DS
  • Developer: Game Freak
  • Publisher: Nintendo

Spurred on by finishing Pokémon Yellow two weeks ago, I jumped back into Pokémon X, which I’d never quite finished. Now I have.

Going from one of the Game Boy originals to a 3DS iteration is really eye-opening about how much the series has come in terms of flow and improvement of its still not quite perfect UI.

Onto Pokémon Sun!

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Game Completion 2018 #40 – Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker

  • Game: Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker
  • Platform: Switch
  • Developer: Nintendo
  • Publisher: Nintendo

This is the second time that I’ve beaten this. A fantastic example of a B-tier Nintendo game that won’t rock your world, but you’ll experience nothing but joy while playing it.

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Game Completion 2018 #39 – The Banner Saga 3

  • Game: The Banner Saga 3
  • Platform: Switch
  • Developer: Stoic Studio
  • Publisher: Versus Evil

A great conclusion to what has been a fantastic series. Won’t say more as to do so could border on spoiler territory, and I’ll be speaking about it in more depth on episode 42 of the Switch Focus Podcast.

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Game Completion 2018 #38 – Pokémon Yellow

  • Game: Pokémon Yellow
  • Platform: 3DS (Originally Game Boy)
  • Developer: Game Freak
  • Publisher: Nintendo

Although I’ve started both Pokémon White and X previously, I’d never completed a core Pokémon game before. I think I’d just missed being the right age for it originally.

Yellow, then, due to the 3DS virtual console release over a year ago, becomes the first I’ve seen through to the end. An enjoyable JRPG-lite, a piece of history, but full of design decisions that were common in its original era, but simply frustrating now.

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Game Completion 2018 #37 – Splatoon 2 (single-player)

  • Game: Splatoon 2
  • Platform: Switch
  • Developer: Nintendo EPD
  • Publisher: Nintendo

It wasn’t until the Octo Expansion was announced that I realised that Splatoon 2 already had a decently-sized single-player component. Since then, I’ve been using it as a Saturday afternoon game, chipping away at each of the five worlds every week.

It’s been a fun experience overall, but one that gets annoying at times, and I’m not sure it’s wholly convinced me to check out the DLC, but maybe I could pick it up in a sale down the line.

If you’re interested in the multiplayer side of things, which of course is the main event, then I wrote at length about why it’s the perfect team-based online shooter for those that don’t tend to enjoy team-based online shooters.

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Game Completion 2018 #36 – Inside

  • Game: Inside
  • Platform: Switch
  • Developer: Playdead
  • Publisher: Playdead

Another interesting puzzle-platformer from Playdead, and wow is it a wild ride.

I have thoughts, but won’t share them due to spoilers, but will talk about it in more depth in episode 39 of the Switch Focus Podcast.

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Game Completion 2018 #35 – Limbo

  • Game: Limbo
  • Platform: Switch
  • Developer: Playdead
  • Publisher: Playdead

A terrific puzzle-platformer that I’ve played twice before on 360 and Vita, and was all too happy to revisit again on Switch.

I’ll talk about it in depth in episode 39 of the Switch Focus Podcast.

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Game Completion 2018 #34 – Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus

  • Game: Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus
  • Platform: Switch
  • Developer: Machine Games (ported by Panic Button)
  • Publisher: Bethesda

I am a big fan of what Machine Games have done with the Wolfenstein series, and last year’s sequel was easilty one of my favourite shooters this generation. I enjoyed it even more this time around with the added bonus of portability.

This Switch port is a technical marvel. Rather than cut features or make substantial changes to make it fit on what is a battery powered handheld, Panic Button have managed to port the game in its entirety. The only cost is that it can get blurry at times, especially in outdoor areas, but it at no point hampered gameplay. It runs extremely smoothly and looks terrrific in motion too, even handling some of the biggest moments incredibly well.

I’m so happy to have replayed it.

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Game Completion 2018 #33 – Mario Tennis Aces

  • Game: Mario Tennis Aces
  • Platform: Switch
  • Developer: Camelot
  • Publisher: Nintendo

I’ll be honest, I would have had zero interest in Mario Tennis Aces were it not for the promise of a full story mode, and that campaign – the ‘Adventure Mode’ – is not at all what I’d have expected from a game with Nintendo’s mascot on the front.

It’s gruelling and unwelcoming, with painfully uneven difficulty spikes, and doesn’t do a great job of explaining its fighting-game style mechanics, nor make any effort to ensure you understand them. The rhythm of ‘easy, easy, easy, fuck you, easy’ is utterly baffling, and at times it simply feels completely unfair. I’m not one to shy away from a challenge, I love and beat Celeste, for example, but even I nearly walked away from Aces at least three times.

Although it has definite issues, I am glad I stuck with it until I beat it. I had fun in places, and beating the matches and challenges that at one point seemed impossible was definitely pleasing, yet I felt the need to press on in spite of it, rather than out of enjoyment.

We talked about it in Episode 37 of the Switch Focus Podcast, and I’ll talk some more about it in 38.

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