Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy Catch-All

I'd take this over the dreck that was the final two avengers movies any day.

Think I'm on the final chapter. There was a bit of point of no return dialog on the ship before we left. But I started it during an hour of kid napping yesterday and played another hour after kids went to bed last night and still not done. At least the checkpoint saves are frequent.

Hopefully will finish tonight.

Some visual spoilers, but no more than a trailer might show.

One thing this shows is that the core four actors were recorded together, which helps explain their rapport.

Finished at 17 hours, like 80% trophies. Did not get the 50% of collectibles even. So yeah lots of videos to check if I want to find stuff. And lots of missing costumes.

Great game. Going to be high on GotY list.

I managed to get every Groot and Drax costume, and I think every conversation with Gamora, but yeah, there's a lot of stuff in this game that's evidently easy to miss.

That said, beat it, and boy did it surprise me in its quality. I really liked this game. I hope it manages to do well in terms of sales, because honestly, the discount I got it during the Thanksgiving/Autumn sales was surprising. Hopefully, with the VGAs coming up and therefore more sales on nominees (of which Guardians of the Galaxy is one), it'll get more sales and recognition because I want Square Enix to earn more off this single-player story-driven game than they did on Avengers, microtransactions or no.

Also: now that I've beaten it, I find it a crime none of the performers were nominated for a Best Performance, though it's kind of hard to pick just one (and, technically, would be antithetical to the story... but I mean, not even Nikki?)

Cosmos is my favorite video game character ever.

I think there may be a memory leak past chapter 10. I encountered so many slowdowns, one bugged restart, and further frame drops even in smaller encounters. Saved my progress. Shut down, will start from my save tomorrow. Enjoying the game though, pretty long for a AAA title, been a while.

I picked this up a week ago, and I'm now in Chapter 3 (having played for a couple of hours).

So far this feels like an average game, lifted by some fantastic dialogue and voice acting. I'm really enjoying getting to know Peter and his shipmates, and I'm loving the interplay between them. There's some wonderful bitching and bickering.

The rest of the game feels pretty thin. I only seem to move forward towards the yellow marker, finding resources occasionally and doing some (very) light platforming and puzzle-solving. And along the way, some fights happen. Does the game get deeper than this as it progresses? The visuals are lovely, but gameplay-wise, Guardians feels like it could have been made at any time in the last 15 years. In fact, it reminds me of Mass Effect 2 in many ways.

The combat is quite frenetic. I'm never entirely sure what my team-mates are doing from moment to moment, so I tend to use their abilities a little randomly. I should probably be using their abilities tactically, but I don't feel like I'm receiving any visual or aural feedback to help with this.

And in terms of upgrading abilities, does it make more sense to upgrade mine first? Or does it not really matter? I actually chose to give Rocket the gravity grenades early on, because I thought it would help me control the arena better by grouping enemies together. I'm probably going to continue to spread my upgrades around... unless other GwJers feel that another approach would be better.

Also, the arenas are quite small so far, so I find myself poorly sighted quite often.

The only other thing I'll note are the Quick Time Events. I understand why they're in the game; there'd be very little action - for long stretches - without them. But I don't really like them... not least because I've encountered 3 different types so far. A button masher. A timed press version. And finally one where I had to move the L3 and R3 sticks simultaneously. Not fun. I've died more on the QTEs than on anything else.

The net result is that I've decided to treat GotG like a Telltale game. Follow the story. Enjoy the interactions between the characters. Don't get invested in the action-y bits.

I paid £34.99 for the game. I think that's too much for what I've played so far. I'd advise others to wait until it's around £20-25.

Walked away from this game after chapter 3 (I think? First meeting with LadyHellbender). Amazing visuals, lot’s of great banter, but in the end, I just didn’t feel any character buy-in.

I’m glad others have enjoyed it, and I don’t regret my time with it. With everything else I have vying for my time, game-wise, GotG just didn’t make the cut.

detroit20 wrote:

The only other thing I'll note are the Quick Time Events. I understand why they're in the game; there'd be very little action - for long stretches - without them. But I don't really like them... not least because I've encountered 3 different types so far. A button masher. A timed press version. And finally one where I had to move the L3 and R3 sticks simultaneously. Not fun. I've died more on the QTEs than on anything else.

You can disable the QTE’s entirely in the Accessibility settings. I loathed them, as well, and that definitely helped with my short time with the game.

trueheart78 wrote:

You can disable the QTE’s entirely in the Accessibility settings. I loathed them, as well, and that definitely helped with my short time with the game.

I ended up Googling the solution for the second type of QTE (I felt less ashamed of having to do this when I saw how results game up), and learned that indeed they can be disabled. I've not done that though. If I disable them, then I fear I'll be turning much of the game into a walking simulator.

I'm interested in the fact that you weren't invested enough to continue past Chapter 3. I suspect that the writing alone won't be enough to hold my interest. But then part of me is actually quite relieved to be able to buy and play old-fashioned, short(ish), linear actions games like GotG and Deathloop. Increasingly, I shudder at the thought of a 40-hour open world game or an endless 'games as a service' offering like Destiny 2. Sometimes, it's just nice to know that you'll be finished in a couple of weeks.

detroit20 wrote:

The combat is quite frenetic. I'm never entirely sure what my team-mates are doing from moment to moment, so I tend to use their abilities a little randomly. I should probably be using their abilities tactically, but I don't feel like I'm receiving any visual or aural feedback to help with this.

Your allies "help", but basically they're there to be used. I'm trying to think of the best way to word it, especially since you have fewer abilities to use at the start, but you want to think more "RPG" than "shooter". Oddly enough the closest comparison I can think of is Xenoblade Chronicles, where it's more about watching cooldown timers than anything else.

So, for example, Rocket gets a bomb attack that will pull enemies together into one spot. This ability is great to follow up with an Area of Effect attack by one of the other Guardians. If you abstract this, it's just basically combining spells to be most effective with one another like in an RPG. However, the presentation of it makes it seem more like a shooter with squad commands, which isn't as accurate since your squad immediately goes back to minding their own business.

It is frenetic, though, and by time you're swapping the elements of Peter's guns to coincide with an enemy's vulnerability, all the while trying to pick out and spot snipers for Gamora to insta-kill or for mooks that Rocket or Groot can disable or some such, well... I found it exciting and ended up really loving the combat more than others. But I can also see how it would become frustrating to others.

I advise messing around in the custom difficulty settings, especially if you want to completely stop time while making a decision regarding abilities rather than slowing time, or if you want to make Peter's guns a bit more powerful, or to reduce damage, etc. There's enough settings to tweak that you might find certain modifications will make it more pleasant for you.

And in terms of upgrading abilities, does it make more sense to upgrade mine first? Or does it not really matter? I actually chose to give Rocket the gravity grenades early on, because I thought it would help me control the arena better by grouping enemies together. I'm probably going to continue to spread my upgrades around... unless other GwJers feel that another approach would be better.

I had a tendency to prioritize Peter's abilities, but in the end I only used rocket boots and the rapid-fire abilities that often. I can't even remember what his other two abilities are off the top of my head. In the end, it depends on which you find to be most useful or to fill a niche in the current "load-out", so to speak. For example, I think Drax's linear charge was the last item I bought at that level because enemies are so mobile that charging down more than one mook was an unlikely occurrence. Giving Gamora an attack that allowed her to deal damage to multiple foes was, on the other hand, highly advantageous, as well as giving Groot an attack that helped build stagger or whatever the meter is on bosses and stronger opponents.

Honestly it's a very meaty system, but the largest issue is there's no way to really reduce the amount of aggro Peter draws, which is a lot. If Drax's linear charge could have been swapped with some sort of generic War Cry aggro ability that drew enemies to him, it'd have gotten a lot of use out of me. For a game that's all about teamwork and Peter's leadership, enemies prioritize Peter in a way that really does make it seem like the other Guardians aren't really doing much.

detroit20 wrote:
trueheart78 wrote:

You can disable the QTE’s entirely in the Accessibility settings. I loathed them, as well, and that definitely helped with my short time with the game.

I ended up Googling the solution for the second type of QTE (I felt less ashamed of having to do this when I saw how results game up), and learned that indeed they can be disabled. I've not done that though. If I disable them, then I fear I'll be turning much of the game into a walking simulator.

It’s that point (emphasis mine) that made it even easier to walk away. You’re correct it removed some interactions, but if those weren’t fun (yet frustrating), then it just reinforces my decision.

QTEs suck. Turned them off immediately. I liked the options in Spider-Man where you could just turn them into simple press and hold. Rapid taps are just dumb and it's nice to do something but not fail. Sadly Avengers had the same seeing but it was bugged and I ran into at least 3 times where it didn't work while playing the story. So many problems with that game.

Anyway yeah GotG, combo team attacks. For trash it's usually Rocket gather bomb, Groot AoE immobilize and boom. Sometimes an attack from the other two.

For heavier targets, Drax stuns them so you can open up on them. Peter's 3rd attack? also does that but AoE. He jumps up and stuns everyone around him. I think Groot also gets a single target stun. I tried to get at least 2 powers from everyone for different situations before I maxed anyone out. Everybody has useful stuff.

So generally use 2-4 teammate powers all at once. And then whenever you huddle there's no cooldowns on stuff so you go to town on everyone.

Holy crap I love these characters. I'd have a hard time picking a favorite, other than I know Rocket wouldn't be it. It's amazing how expressive Groot can be saying "I am Groot" different ways with his change in expression. I think I'm in chapter 9 now, maybe 10. The combat is pretty fun but the last area had way too much

Spoiler:

(escaping the Church's location)

. It's a little difficult for me to remember what each character's abilities are and which icon it is, other than the first ability they got.

I think I'm going to be a bit sad when I have to say goodbye to these characters when the game is done.

I binged the rest of this today - I had a lot of time since I'm quarantined in my computer room because of coronavirus. This was the most joyous fun I've had in a while with a video game. This cast is definitely up there with my favorite video game characters.

The combat was pretty fun - just too often and many encounters lasted too long. The game looked nice, but the levels seemed a bit limited and repetitive, like they didn't have the budget to make enough unique assets. The music was perfect too.

Probably my number one 2021 game just for the sheer amount of fun I had experiencing it. I think lately action games with a great cast of characters / story has resonated with me more than any other genre. It used to be 4Xs and strategy games, and while I still think I spend more time with strategy games, they don't have that emotional impact that games like this do.

I agree with you that many of the combat encounters lasted too long.

I get that combat is challenging to get right in game like this.

Developers want the player to feel part of a team, fighting side-by-side. But the also want the player to be both a fighter and a tactical leader on offense, and to support/revive their team-mates on defense. If these are the basic requirements for the combat system then they demand lots of enemies - of varying types - who last long enough for those requirements to be fulfilled.

I think the problem is that this has been translated here into:

1 - A player-character's base attack that doesn't do much damage;
2 - Team-mates who don't seem to do much base damage either, and;
2 - Bullet-sponge enemies (even the most basic ones)

I have found it very frustrating to deploy Rocket's Gravity Grenades to incapacitate 2/3 of my opponents, only to discover that Star Lord and the team are only able to chip away slowly at their health. This is one of the reasons why the encounters go on so long.

I think Eidos-Montreal recognised this during development, and I think this is why they decided to expose so many options in the difficulty settings... So that players could tune the game to their own preferences. I certainly didn't find the default medium difficulty at all enjoyable by Chapter 8/9.

And I agree that, by that point, much of the combat felt like gratuitous padding. I'd move from one arena... straight into another.

I think your insights into the game seem pretty spot on.

I finished this last night.

I really enjoyed the character-driven elements of the story, and the interactions and growing relationships between ALL of the characters. It would have been easy to have focused solely on Star Lord's relationships with each team member, so it was gratifying to see that time and thought had gone into developing those within the Team too.

The overall narrative was... well, it was sci-fi stuff. Don't examine too closely, less you accidentally poke your finger through it.

The only unenjoyable element was the combat, which really began to drag in last 3 or 4 Chapters. As robc has said, there is way too much of it (sometimes arena follows arena... which follows arena). And the developers only answer to the questions "What's different this time? Where's the variety?" is to throw MORE of everything at the player. More basic enemies. More elite enemies. More snipers. More mini-bosses.

I can only read this as interactive content specifically designed to make the game longer. For me, it certainly didn't make the game more enjoyable.

For me, it spoke volumes that two of the final mystery powers were

Spoiler:

Invulnerability for Star Lord, and Team Revive for Groot.

I think you only put those in if you're intending for the player to take several attempts to figure out the final few combat puzzles.

Even then, I found the mystery powers underwhelming. Perhaps my definition of "does huge damage" differs from that of the developers. But I was disappoint to discover, for example, that Rocket's mega-gun couldn't actually kill a fully immobilised mini-boss.

Also, the sign-posting on a couple of the boss encounters was pretty poor. I wasn't clear what the game was expecting me to do and when to do it

Spoiler:

the Dragon, Fin Fang Foom, and the Grand Unifier. Raker.

[EDIT - On the second of those fights, the Internet tells me that only Star Lord and Rocket can do damage to the enemy until he lands and switches off his shields. Hard to spot that in the thick of a fight with him...]

I'm glad I bought and played it. But I don't think I'd play a sequel if the combat remains the same. And, too be honest, I don't know what story the developers could tell that I'd be interested to hear. I don't think they could equal the character journey that they created here.

Sounds like when I pick it back up, as I bounced off after an hour or so, that I'll move the game to Easy so combat encounters don't last so long.

Not because the game is hard, but because it lasts too long. Bah.

garion333 wrote:

Sounds like when I pick it back up, as I bounced off after an hour or so, that I'll move the game to Easy so combat encounters don't last so long.

Not because the game is hard, but because it lasts too long. Bah.

If you only managed an hour first time around, then I'd double-check what the 'Easy' settings actually are. Does it disable the Quick Time Events? Does it 'auto-win' the huddles? If not, then check those boxes. I think both of those important to switching to story mode.

I ended up building my own custom setting as the game progressed and I grew more impatient with different aspects of it. But I never got round to disabling those bits.

FWIW, I suggest you prepare for another 'hump' at around Chapters 9 and 10. For me, that was when it felt like the developers ran out of ideas and variations in the gameplay (as opposed to the story), and began repeating themselves.

I was reminded a little of Season 6 of Game of Thrones, where they ran out of books and basically turned the show from a political drama into a very, very long action movie.

detroit20 wrote:
garion333 wrote:

Sounds like when I pick it back up, as I bounced off after an hour or so, that I'll move the game to Easy so combat encounters don't last so long.

Not because the game is hard, but because it lasts too long. Bah.

If you only managed an hour first time around, then I'd double-check what the 'Easy' settings actually are. Does it disable the Quick Time Events? Does it 'auto-win' the huddles? If not, then check those boxes. I think both of those important to switching to story mode.

I ended up building my own custom setting as the game progressed and I grew more impatient with different aspects of it. But I never got round to disabling those bits.

FWIW, I suggest you prepare for another 'hump' at around Chapters 9 and 10. For me, that was when it felt like the developers ran out of ideas and variations in the gameplay (as opposed to the story), and began repeating themselves.

I was reminded a little of Season 6 of Game of Thrones, where they ran out of books and basically turned the show from a political drama into a very, very long action movie.

It isn't qtes and whatnot, at least not yet, but moreso that the game was very pretty, linear corridors. Felt too much like an (older) Uncharted game in that way. I have to be in a very specific mindset for that sort of move forward, see set piece, shoot enemies, rinse repeat.

garion333 wrote:

It isn't qtes and whatnot, at least not yet, but moreso that the game was very pretty, linear corridors. Felt too much like an (older) Uncharted game in that way. I have to be in a very specific mindset for that sort of move forward, see set piece, shoot enemies, rinse repeat.

Yep. Further upthread I made a similar observation. If you ignore the graphics (and there are some very lovely reflective effects, and Peter Quill's facial hair is magnificent), then this is very much a game that could have been made anytime in the last 15 years.

It reminded me of the only Mass Effect game that I've played: Mass Effect 2.

Finished last night. Legitimately loved the story. Did a great job of capturing the films but making the story, characters, and world its own thing. Tremendous characterization too. It's a shame there probably won't be a sequel.