Bastion Catch-all (now coming to iPad)

I just finished it. I thoroughly enjoyed it. What a fun little game.

I'm surprised the Carbine isn't getting more love in this thread. Huge range, and with the right upgrades it'll one-shot most enemies and do splash damage to anything nearby. Plus, the Special that lets you shoot a timed explosive charge is ridiculously powerful.

Music question...potential spoiler.

Spoiler:

Does have a better ear than I (which isn't hard) or has anyone found guitar chords for Zia's song and Home Sweet Home?

My searching has been fruitless.

muttonchop wrote:

I'm surprised the Carbine isn't getting more love in this thread. Huge range, and with the right upgrades it'll one-shot most enemies and do splash damage to anything nearby. Plus, the Special that lets you shoot a timed explosive charge is ridiculously powerful.

In these later levels that are populated by plants I've been rocking the Carbine + Repeater or Shotgun, whichever works better. Can't wait until New Game+ when I can bust out the melee again.

Once I got the mortar, I never looked back. But in retrospect, I think all weapons fully upgraded get sick.

rabbit wrote:

Once I got the mortar, I never looked back. But in retrospect, I think all weapons fully upgraded get sick.

I think so. I did the pistols with armor piercing which made mincemeat out of those annoying armored mobs and the machete with the dot took care of anything that got close

I just tore through New Game Plus with a few highly upgraded weapons. I'm still basking in how much fun this game is, and sad that I've basically done everything. It's my favorite game I've played so far this year, and the price and game length actually have a lot to do with that. I wouldn't have tried $60 game or one that lasted 30-40 hours. The game length and price were just right to get me to make the purchase and so that I could finish it in a weekend.

As for my favorite weapons, the first time around I really liked the pike. It's a great all-around tool: It has reach, can go through barriers, can pierce armor, and has two fun special skills: a leap attack for good damage or a sweep attack that damages and pushes everything around you, which is great as a panic button/crowd control.

My setup for New Game Plus with 7 idols:

Spoiler:

Idols: I had 7 of 10 going most of the time. I think the only ones I didn't have activated were the one that deflects attacks (made enemies too difficult when combined with regen and turning into air), the god that stops enemies from dropping health tonics and black tonics, and the one that makes enemies leave a small explosion when they die.

Weapons: Carbine and Fire Bellows. Special: Carbine Timed Explosive Shot
The Carbine is an outstanding weapon, it has some of the best reach, damage, and importantly, AOE that won't damage you. It can be used point-blank as well, and does high AOE damage in a single attack, which is important when enemies are regenerating health and turning to air.

Fire Bellows: I hated the fire bellows the first time through and hardly touched them, but I grew to love them once I had fully upgraded them.
Here's the upgrades I used and why it worked for me: +20% Fuel Generation, DOT Burn, Cripple/Snare, Damage Resist While Firing, and Long Range Attack (but immobile while firing).
The long range attack and the DOT are the most important pieces IMO. The fire bellows will go through any surface, which means you can stand behind a pillar and can damage enemies almost 1/3 of the screen away. The DOT is equally important when you have enemies that regenerate and either deflect attacks or turn to air. Some enemies are nearly impossible to kill, between their shielding and the idol boosts, like the giant plant that launches the floating eyes. For enemies with tough defenses like those, the DOT whittles them down and ignores armor, keeping the regeneration at bay.
Pair that with a single powerful attack that does a lot of damage all at once. The carbine did that for me, but the hammer is probably the best in that role. Weapons that rely on a lot of fast but weak attacks (e.g. repeater and machete) are basically useless against those kinds of enemies.

So I was on the Sundown Path, at the very end, when I had two skyways to choose from: one, presumably, would take me to the Core piece, and the other took me back to the Bastion. Well I ended up going back to the Bastion without the Core piece, and now I can't revisit the level to get the stupid thing.

Do you have to collect all the Core pieces? Can the game be completed with enough Core pieces gathered from other levels? If so, is it better yet to collect them all? Basically, am I boned, should I restart, or do I just soldier on?

The weapons seem shockingly well-balanced. I certainly preferred some, but I enjoyed them all and would sometimes switch up just for variety. They do all have a powerful final upgrade.

Gravey, I don't recall that specific level, but I didn't think it was possible to leave without a required core. There are definitely levels where you think you are going to get one but don't for some reason. I do not think you are boned.

The narration mechanic isn't quite as frequent as I thought it'd be, but when it works, it really works. He comments on most of my weapon combinations, and even recognized how often I use certain weapons. Also when I "blasted everything in sight with my new-fangled musket." I really liked:

Spoiler:

The narration during the dream in the bog. The way they mix up some of the old narration is pretty awesome. "He woke up... I'm just foolin'."

And I can't fault a game with an upgrade item called, "Something Wrong," described as a heavy, twitchy piece of bone.

I do wish it were easier to get money, though. I've got a lot of upgrades to buy and the Memorial is a harsh mistress.

I dont think you can screw yourself on core pieces. Just press through the story and it will all work out.

The core pieces are part of the main "quest".

yeah I dont believe you can end up back at the Bastion without the core.. unless you specifically leave the area.. but then you wont see the area as "Cleared"

Okay, sounds good. The area does say cleared and it's a red star on the map, with the description saying the path collapsed before the piece could be recovered IIRC. I was a little miffed since it was the last level I was going to play before going to sleep and at the end of it I thought it had suddenly been a waste.

So I just raged for a while and then posted on here.

There are a few levels where there's no way to get the core. Don't worry about it.

LobsterMobster wrote:

I do wish it were easier to get money, though. I've got a lot of upgrades to buy and the Memorial is a harsh mistress.

You can always just repeat the Who Knows Where segments, they give a decent amount of cash and the first one (the pipe) is really easy once you have a few weapon upgrades.

But they're long. Maybe I'll turn one of the gods on to get that achievement/vigil.

LobsterMobster wrote:

But they're long. Maybe I'll turn one of the gods on to get that achievement/vigil.

The pipe one isn't too long. I was farming it a couple of nights ago for cash and the weapon-specific memorials. With 5 or 6 idols turned on.

My weapon setup:

Spoiler:

Mortar on the X button. At first I was using it all the time (because it's awesomely powerful with upgrades that decrease charge and reload time, and increase damage and blast radius), but then I realized that I was actually killing things faster WITHOUT it.

Any other weapon on B button -- more upgrades is better, obviously.

Special attack: The Mortar special that throws out a turret. This is where things get amazing. Throw out 3 turrets as soon as you can, spaced evenly from each other. The turrets benefit you in 2 ways: first, by shooting things for you, and second, by acting as a decoy, drawing aggro away from you. Whenever you pick up another black potion, throw out another turret, replacing ones that break first. I was getting 6 or 7 turrets out at a time, and they were just totally mopping the field with all of the enemies -- I just needed to throw out a few bullets or whatever to help when they get overwhelmed a bit with swarms of little enemies.

LobsterMobster wrote:

The narration mechanic isn't quite as frequent as I thought it'd be, but when it works, it really works. He comments on most of my weapon combinations..

I do wish it were easier to get money, though. I've got a lot of upgrades to buy and the Memorial is a harsh mistress.

Try coming out of the Arsenal with the Galleon Mortar and the Calamity Cannon.

I'm pretty sure you're intended to be slightly gimped on the first playthrough, and use New Game Plus to get all the shiny upgrades. Like, I can't see how a normal human can finish the Calamity Cannon proving ground without a second game spent upgrading it to the max. You'd have to do a LOT of pointless grinding in Who Knows Where otherwise.

I liked the Galleon Mortar a lot too but I don't really understand the damage upgrades. That thing obliterates most enemies without any upgrades.

The Calamity Cannon is nice (especially using LT as a makeshift auto-aim) but I don't know if I'd pair it with the mortar. If you get caught in the blast radius of either it'll cause damage. Seems like you'd be leaving yourself completely open to melee attacks.

I usually keep the Flame Bellows on hand, though now that I have more weapons with armor piercing I might mix it up a bit. I've fully upgraded the Dueling Pistols and they're quite nice too.

The challenges do seem pretty uneven in terms of difficulty. Like Beep mentioned, the Calamity Cannon challenge is impossible to even finish without a bunch of upgrades. Meanwhile I took first place on the Army Carbine challenge my first try, with no upgrades.

LobsterMobster wrote:

The challenges do seem pretty uneven in terms of difficulty. Like Beep mentioned, the Calamity Cannon challenge is impossible to even finish without a bunch of upgrades. Meanwhile I took first place on the Army Carbine challenge my first try, with no upgrades.

You can get 1st on the musket challenge without any upgrades pretty easily too.
Some are just plain hard whether you have upgrades or not. Anyone actually get first place on the hammer challenge? I got within about 5 seconds of the time limit and then gave up. It's a stupid challenge anyway, most of the others teach some sort of skill specific to the weapon, not just "roll around and smash stuff really fast". That's not something you ever need to do in-game.

LobsterMobster wrote:

I've fully upgraded the Dueling Pistols and they're quite nice too.

Yeah I'm really digging the pistols right now, especially with that special ability that so far as I've seen one-shots any enemy.

muttonchop wrote:
LobsterMobster wrote:

The challenges do seem pretty uneven in terms of difficulty. Like Beep mentioned, the Calamity Cannon challenge is impossible to even finish without a bunch of upgrades. Meanwhile I took first place on the Army Carbine challenge my first try, with no upgrades.

You can get 1st on the musket challenge without any upgrades pretty easily too.
Some are just plain hard whether you have upgrades or not. Anyone actually get first place on the hammer challenge? I got within about 5 seconds of the time limit and then gave up. It's a stupid challenge anyway, most of the others teach some sort of skill specific to the weapon, not just "roll around and smash stuff really fast". That's not something you ever need to do in-game.

I got 1 second away once. You would think it would motivate me to do it, all it did was make me not want to try it again.

muttonchop wrote:

Anyone actually get first place on the hammer challenge?

I did it. It's all about the rolling and smashing. Roll and smash baby! Never managed to get 1st in the shield challenge, though... fewer than 2 hits!?

muttonchop wrote:

It's a stupid challenge anyway, most of the others teach some sort of skill specific to the weapon, not just "roll around and smash stuff really fast". That's not something you ever need to do in-game.

Depends how much of a loot whore you are in the early levels ...

Clemenstation wrote:
muttonchop wrote:

Anyone actually get first place on the hammer challenge?

I did it. It's all about the rolling and smashing. Roll and smash baby! Never managed to get 1st in the shield challenge, though... fewer than 2 hits!?

muttonchop wrote:

It's a stupid challenge anyway, most of the others teach some sort of skill specific to the weapon, not just "roll around and smash stuff really fast". That's not something you ever need to do in-game.

Depends how much of a loot whore you are in the early levels ...

Shield isn't bad, trick is on the final blob to not try to block. lure him to an edge and roll out of the way.

Clemenstation wrote:
muttonchop wrote:

It's a stupid challenge anyway, most of the others teach some sort of skill specific to the weapon, not just "roll around and smash stuff really fast". That's not something you ever need to do in-game.

Depends how much of a loot whore you are in the early levels ...

I smashed every bit of scenery in sight. I never had to do it within a time limit.

muttonchop wrote:

Anyone actually get first place on the hammer challenge? I got within about 5 seconds of the time limit and then gave up. It's a stupid challenge anyway, most of the others teach some sort of skill specific to the weapon, not just "roll around and smash stuff really fast". That's not something you ever need to do in-game.

I did, and it was the last weapon challenge that I beat. It probably took me a good 20 tries, over a couple of days. The key seemed to be rolling A LOT, and learning how to cancel your attack animation by rolling again. I think there is some weapon-related skill training, but canceling out of your attack animation is hardly a crucial skill, and the instructions for that proving ground don't really clue you in.

I still haven't beaten Bullhead court though, and I'm not sure if I'm going to bother. I've gotten that down to 5 hits but it just takes so long to go through the entire challenge. That plus the fact that it doesn't unlock another skill (just money) means I probably won't bother.

I keep trying different weapon loadouts, but I always end up gravitating back to the Carbine. That combo of ridiculous range and high damage is just too good to pass up, especially when you're running with a bunch of idols active. I can one-shot enemies that aren't even on the screen yet. I still haven't settled on a second weapon, I thought the musket would be a good fit but the fact that it doesn't auto-aim doesn't really mesh with my "kite enemies around and shoot them with the carbine" strategy. The bellows seems ok, the hammer is good but a bit too risky when you have the bomb-drop idol active. Maybe I'll try upgrading the pike.

I finished my second playthrough this morning. By the end, I was at max level and had fully upgraded everything, with plenty of money to spare. My favorite weapons:

Spoiler:

The Calamity Cannon with the Fire Bellows, and the Mortar (with the upgrade that prevents you from taking blast damage) and the Carbine.

LobsterMobster wrote:

I liked the Galleon Mortar a lot too but I don't really understand the damage upgrades. That thing obliterates most enemies without any upgrades.

The Calamity Cannon is nice (especially using LT as a makeshift auto-aim) but I don't know if I'd pair it with the mortar....

The challenges do seem pretty uneven in terms of difficulty. Like Beep mentioned, the Calamity Cannon challenge is impossible to even finish without a bunch of upgrades. Meanwhile I took first place on the Army Carbine challenge my first try, with no upgrades.

The Galleon Mortar damage upgrades are generally not required, but there are a few really tough enemies eventually that can take a few mortars.

I would not seriously suggest rolling with the Cannon and Mortar, but the reaction from the narrator is pretty funny.

The unevenness of the proving grounds is probably my biggest criticism of the game (even that is kind of a nitpick huh?)... I never got the Hammer one either, but I was able to do the Shield after several attempts. Besides getting the timing down with repeated attempts, you want to be sure to use the spirits that give you bonus damage for a shield counterattack; you should be one-shotting everything but the final blob. The first prize is "only" 2500 though, so it is not worth it except as a personal challenge.