Did your pile become less of a mountain? - 2011 in review

I decided to keep Katamari Forever from GameFly. I think I'm about half way through it already, so I'm not too worried about pile bloat. Plus, it will be nice to have a chill game to fall back on, between sessions of Bulletstorm, Dead Space 2, etc.

I wrapped up Deadly Premonition and have moved on to Epic Mickey and Dante's Inferno. Switching from one to the other has been an interesting experience.

m0nk3yboy wrote:

With that in mind, anyone want to help me get my momentum back with DA:O? I haven't even got the Urn of Sacred ashes (did the Arl mission first), and I'm finding it difficult to keep on track. I miss the regular stream of 'ploks' as a regular score whore achievement hunter. Maybe I just messed up picking a BIG pile title to start with, and I should have gone for a few 'quick victories' to keep up momentum.

I say focus on the story, when I was playing DA:O on 360 I found the achievements were hampering my ability to enjoy the game itself, because I knew that each decision might cost me an achievement. I'm playing on PC now, and focusing on the story is keeping me very interested. If you want to try and rekindle interest, I recommend going to Orzammar and leave the Urn for later. I thought the Urn quest was rather dull, where as Orzammar is all kinds of awesome. Personal taste of course, but it was right after the Urn quest that I found myself losing interest in the game, and now that I've finished Orzammar I can't put it down.

EDIT: Regarding my own timeline, 3 days left in February and I have 2 remaining zones in DA:O. As much as I really want to finish it in February, something tells me it won't happen. It will happen before DA2 comes out, but probably not in the next 3 days.

Bioshock 2 finished. Loved it. I'll play it through at least one more time after I've had a break but it's effectively crossed off the list.

I would play Dead Space next but I don't think I could cope with another 'lone survivor fights of monstrosities with a range of interesting weapons' scenario just at the moment. Perhaps I'll go for something more light hearted like Red Faction :).

Higgledy wrote:

Bioshock 2 finished. Loved it. I'll play it through at least one more time after I've had a break but it's effectively crossed off the list.

I finished that just last week, and while I enjoyed it, I can't see myself ever going back to it.

Hasn't been a bad year, I've actually started and finished Dead Space, DS2, and Bioshock 2 this year.

Wakim wrote:
Higgledy wrote:

Bioshock 2 finished. Loved it. I'll play it through at least one more time after I've had a break but it's effectively crossed off the list.

I finished that just last week, and while I enjoyed it, I can't see myself ever going back to it.

Hasn't been a bad year, I've actually started and finished Dead Space, DS2, and Bioshock 2 this year.

There's something very satisfying about finishing a game and putting it back on the shelf (or selling it) knowing you did it justice. To be honest I'll probably play through Bioshock 2 again on 'Hard' but that'll be it. The game has made me keen to see both Xcom (from the guys who did B2) and Bioshock Infinite.

So my shame so far:

Picked up Hydrophobia back when it was on-sale, but I must have tempted the 12-month plan gods, because I was in the midst of wrapping it up when my 360 red-ringed. I did finish it this morning (the tax refund went to a Slim/Kinect, so...), but I do need to stare sheepishly at my feet and admit breaking my own pledge earlier. Also: while it was decent enough, it wasn't worth it...

The bundle did come with Kinect Adventures, and while I'm certainly farting around with it, I don't feel a need to declare it for the pile.

Otherwise, I've made inches of progress in Enslaved, and I'm marking decent time with Sam & Max: Season 1, but I know that's going to get railroaded on the 8th, with my pre-order of Dragon Age II coming in...

EDIT: To say I've put Enslaved to bed, and updated the spreadsheet to reflect that. Hope I didn't screw anything up, m0nk3yboy, but I figure you can fix whatever's wrong if so...

PacMan Championship Edition:DX is on sale via XBLA for 400 space bucks, and that's one of my 2011 purchases at a steal of deal!

trueheart78 wrote:

PacMan Championship Edition:DX is on sale via XBLA for 400 space bucks, and that's one of my 2011 purchases at a steal of deal! :mrgreen:

We're supposed to be removing things from the pile not adding them ;). Thanks for the tip. I'll pick it up.

Finished Time, Gentlemen, Please! Enjoyable, and I re-re-discovered my general dislike for (and impatience with) adventure games. There were a couple of significantly more obscure moments in this one (as opposed to Ben There, Dan That), and what felt like an entire mechanic that didn't really show up until about 85% of the way through.

Still fun, though, and I'm glad I played it.

Completed Metro 2033 (PC) last night and put the final nail into P.N.03 (Gamecube) just now. Also knocked off Mega Man 4 (NES) about a week ago.

Metro 2033
Wow....just....wow...

As well known as this game seems to be, I still feel that it is way underappreciated. Metro 2033 has created the most believable world I've ever experienced in games; it just felt like a real place through and through. There was a "hold the line" mission at one point where a group of us had to fend off wave after wave of mutants. In the aftermath I saw a dead comrade lying on his back, helmet flashlight casting a glow towards the ceiling and I was overcome with a desire to turn off the light (but I couldn't). Arriving at a central station after an arduous journey filled me with such a sense of relief and even awe, as it was like nothing I'd seen in this world.

Dripping with atmosphere, Metro 2033 is perhaps the best single player FPS I've played, despite a few annoyances with the checkpoints. The ammo mechanic is brilliant although I only once ran out of (shotgun) bullets when I needed them. Unlike some, I didn't even mind the change in tone during the last segment of the game; I felt that it gave added urgency to the proceedings and was a fun change of pace. The multiple possible approaches to some missions, as well as available choices made it all feel like an adventure I really took part in and will always remember.

P.N.03
This is the unloved stepchild of Capcom's released Gamecube exclusives, and I don't think it got enough credit. First off, it's not an action game in the Tomb Raider sense; rather it's a shoot-em-up from a third person perspective which rewards enemy placement and pattern memorization in addition to quick reflexes and an even quicker ability to pound the A (shoot) button. The aesthetic is minimalist, but works well. Vanessa, being the star of the game, is easy to look at, and the soundtrack is composed of techno tunes that fit the action well.

Performing well on stages by not taking damage and getting combos allows the player earns points which can be spent on better suits, upgrades, and continues. Earning enough points for more powerful equipment is one of P.N.03's main weaknesses, however, as just playing the regular missions will not suffice. The player has to grind through trial missions which are composed of random arrangements of previously seen rooms and enemies of increasing strengths and numbers to be able to afford a top tier suit and all the upgrades for it. This can quickly become very tedious. The other weakness is that, for all the emphasis on how amazing Vanessa's abilities are, the controls don't always allow her to be as agile as the player would like. Capcom got the controls 90% right, but that final 10% could have made a huge difference in the feel of the game.

I can see myself coming back to P.N.03 in the future for an occasional few rounds. It's too bad that the game didn't take off as there is potential for a great sequel.

Mega Man 4
It's classic Mega Man with the Mega Buster, Rush, and sliding. The final boss was a impossible until I checked youtube and saw that I had to use a previously unknown function of one weapon. Game is good; move along.

------------
Unfortunately, I succumbed to weakness again and bought Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 and its expansion, Uprising when they were on sale on Steam. I've wanted them since I saw the brilliant "Conquer This Life" commercials starring David Hasselhoff and (now defunct) website. Also, Ric Flair!

Just finished Overlord II a few minutes ago and, well Goozex has had me taking a few steps back lately as a number of games have been sent to me, so I updated that on the google doc and dropped deathspank from my list as I don't think I would buy it at even $5 now I still might pass at that price just due to the size of my pile.

And less than 24 hours into the month Alan Wake is down. Annoying, because if I had actually turned it on last night I could have finished. I barely had an hour left, and that was because I kept walking off of things and falling to my doom.

Oh well, it's off the pile anyway. Oddly, it's the first 360 game I've ever played to completion, so I guess that's worth something.

Dunno if I'm going to put anything else on the stack to replace it; I've still got my EU game running. Plus DA:2 is coming out this month and I expect it to consume a ridiculous amount of my time.

LBP2 Story line has been completed, taking off the pile until I figure out all of the details for the level I wish to eventually create. Added Pixeljunk Shooter 2 today (as planned) and Uncharted 2 on Thursday (less planned). Man, Pj S 2 is much more difficult than the original, definitely a true sequel.

Ok. I'm back into Batman AA and I'm going to finish it this time. When I gave up on it, on my first try, I was moments away from popping out into the 'open world' of the island.

OK everyone, I've added the link to the March thread in the original post, and for the last time, promise to check up on everything over the next few days. I have Friday off work for the reason outlined below, and we have a Public Holiday over here in WA on Monday, so that gives me four days to get some house keeping organised.

The hearing in my right ear is still a bit lot out of whack, and I'm going in for an MRI, and ultrasound on my corotid and vertebral veins/arteries this Friday. To say I've been a little distracted for the last 5 weeks is a bit of an understatement. Hopefully everything goes fine, and they find 'nothing unusual' in the final set of tests they run. Then I can just get back to working on strategies to overcome the final amount of hearing loss, once the dust settles.

/derail

Congrats to everyone who's achieving, stay strong, and fight the good fight! That b#st@rd pile's days are numbered!

m0nk3yboy wrote:

/derail

I hope I'm not being presumptuous in speaking for everyone else by saying that we're hoping for the best results from the tests on Friday. Much rather have the thread derail and you get good news than any other outcome.

RSPaulette wrote:
m0nk3yboy wrote:

/derail

I hope I'm not being presumptuous in speaking for everyone else by saying that we're hoping for the best results from the tests on Friday. Much rather have the thread derail and you get good news than any other outcome.

Well said. Hope it goes well.

Higgledy wrote:
RSPaulette wrote:
m0nk3yboy wrote:

/derail

I hope I'm not being presumptuous in speaking for everyone else by saying that we're hoping for the best results from the tests on Friday. Much rather have the thread derail and you get good news than any other outcome.

Well said. Hope it goes well.

Thanks everyone, appreciate the thoughts. Hopefully they find 'nothing out of the ordinary' in 15 hours time...

m0nk3yboy wrote:
Higgledy wrote:
RSPaulette wrote:
m0nk3yboy wrote:

/derail

I hope I'm not being presumptuous in speaking for everyone else by saying that we're hoping for the best results from the tests on Friday. Much rather have the thread derail and you get good news than any other outcome.

Well said. Hope it goes well.

Thanks everyone, appreciate the thoughts. Hopefully they find 'nothing out of the ordinary' in 15 hours time... :)

Absolutely--best of luck, sending good thoughts across the Pacific.

Apollo0507 wrote:
m0nk3yboy wrote:
Higgledy wrote:
RSPaulette wrote:
m0nk3yboy wrote:

/derail

I hope I'm not being presumptuous in speaking for everyone else by saying that we're hoping for the best results from the tests on Friday. Much rather have the thread derail and you get good news than any other outcome.

Well said. Hope it goes well.

Thanks everyone, appreciate the thoughts. Hopefully they find 'nothing out of the ordinary' in 15 hours time... :)

Absolutely--best of luck, sending good thoughts across the Pacific.

Get well, man!

MRI tubes are incredibly comforting and doppler jelly is both gross and cool at the same time. All scans seemed to go OK (no mutating into large green monsters when angered, so far at least), and fingers crossed, I won't hear from the ear, nose and throat specialist until I am scheduled to in two weeks time.

We have a public holiday down here on Monday, so I won't hear any 'bad news' until then (if it's coming). Thanks again everyone for the well wishes, and I'll get to the updates sometime between now and Monday night. I've just treated myself to an upgrade to ADSL2+ and a change in ISP, so I'm going to enjoy getting that set up over the weekend too. The new ISP included a 'free' Belkin 4-Port Wireless VoIP Router and my download quota jumped from 30GB/month with old crew to 200GB/month with the new because I bundled my phone line. Sweetest part, all XBox live traffic and downloads are classifed 'unmetered content'. All of a sudden, 1.6GB demos don't bother me.

Hrrrrrrrrrrrrrghgghhhhhhhh....................... /homer

Hey, good news is good news!

Huzzah!

Great news, M0nkey! At least no news is good news, right?

On a pile tip - Transformers WFC is down. I am making good progress with the pile!

Ok, here's my list.

Completed
Dragon Age: Origins

Want To See Credits Roll On
Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind
Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion
Fallout 3 GOTY
Grand Theft Auto 3
Grand Theft Auto Vice City
Grand Theft Auto San Andreas
Grand Theft Auto 4
Half Life 2
Half Life 2: Episode 1
Half Life 2: Episode 2
Ghost Recon
Ghost Recon Desert Siege
Ghost Recon Island Thunder
GRAW 1
GRAW 2
The Witcher
The Witcher 2
Star Wars: Knights of The Old Republic
STALKER
Neverwinter Nights 2 Platinum
Prince of Persia Sands of Time
Prince of Persia Warrior Within
Prince of Persia Two Thrones

Would Like To Dabble In
Fear
Super Meat Boy
Diablo 2

Future Games I Want to Purchase
Diablo 3
Dragon Age 2
Gears of War 3
Portal 2
Ghost Recon Future Soldier
Rage (Depending on Reviews)
Homefront (Depending on Reviews)

2010 and Prior Games I Want To Buy
Red Dead Redemption ($25 or less)
Mass Effect 2
Baldurs Gate 1 & 2
Icewind Dale 1 & 2

These Games Never Really End
Counterstrike:Source
Team Fortress 2
Torchlight
Day of Defeat:Source
Left 4 Dead
Left 4 Dead 2
Unreal Tournament 3
Unreal Tournament 2004
Guild Wars

Probably Not Going To Happen
Half Life: Blue Shift
Half Life: Opposing Force
Heretic
Hexen Series
Quake Series
Doom Series
Return To Castle Wolfenstein
Diablo
Half Life

Guess I need to drop World of Warcraft and get to work, huh?

I like trueheart78's pledge. Think I'll adopt it here.

I, Mateo, solemnly pledge to take part in the Pile of Shame monthly threads. Even if it is just for one game, I will put forth effort to clear my ever-growing pile, one game at a time.

I also pledge to do everything within my ability to restrict my game purchases to those that I've listed, and, if I should falter, will shamefully add them to the pile in full sight of this support group.

Edit: Picked up NWN2 on the last day of the Steam Sale, and found 3 Prince of Persia discs in a box. As if I needed more games?

I'm batting .500 on the pile so far. Dragon Age Origins completed, Half Life defeated me. Moved that game down to the "Probably Not Going to Happen" list.

At least the pile is starting to move in the right direction!

X-Men Origins Wolverine done and marked off. It was quite an enjoyable mostly mindless game made better because of the license.

Beat Castlevania: Lords of Shadow. A good game with lots of rough edges. More of my impressions here. May still Platinum for 110% completion, don't know.

Now to start The Witcher.

So I was a bit weak, and had some trade-in credit and picked up You Don't Know Jack and Bulletstorm - and Dragon Age 2 is getting delivered on Tuesday. I am weak.

But I have been making great progress on pile games!

So, half-confession/half-question: Do I have to add Kinect Sports and Pacman DX CE to the list?

The former was a purchase to have a bit more to do with the Kinect hardware, but none of the categories (want to see the credits roll, etc.) are ones I would play the game for. "Farting around when company's in and wants to see the hardware work" would be the only category I'd stick it in.

As for the latter, I did pick it up on sale -- had saved points to go with Beyond Good and Evil HD, which I started, but it will be a little while until I get back to it. It's in the "pick up and play but I've no desire to see the credits roll" sort of category.

So what's the correct level of guilt with those additions to the pile?, he asked the community.