Underneath my yellow skin

Tag Archives: Hades

All and asundry

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Qadir is hotter than the burning sun.

I want to find a new game, but I haven’t. Not really. I’ve dabbled into Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York by Draw Distance and–by the way, the name irritates me every time I see it because it’s so pretentious. A colon and a dash? Please. Anyway, I’ve never played any of the other VTM games even though it should be my jam (love vamps!) because they’re old. It’s old. One game thus far with a sequel being teased. I was gifted the game by Ian and decided to give it a try the other night. There are three clans from which you can choose (classes, if you will), two of the three which intrigued me. The anarchist class and the artistic/lover class. The third class is the blue blood (wealthy) class, which leaves me cold. I will try it at some point, probably, especially as it’s the only female character of the three, but I have no interest in it.

I started with the anarchist, naming him yanluo–the Chinese god of the underworld. I never capitalize names in games and I don’t know why. After roughly fifteen minutes, I started over again as the artist, naming him gamab–the African god of death. Sense a theme? The basic story is the same. Oh, it’s an interactive graphic novel, by the way. All the characters are impossibly hot, but that’s to be expected because they’re vampires. Well, there’s one who isn’t because he belongs to the Nosferatu clan, which is the hideous monster clan.

It starts with a mysterious vampire (I presume) talking to you at the beginning and explaining that some powerful vampire had died. Then it goes back to how you became a vamp in the first place. It’s a different story for each character, but it ends up the same. You get turned, your sire deserts you, and the *sigh* Sheriff, Qadir, comes to clean things up and whisk you away. I’m sighing because he is yuuuuuuuuuumy. I was Googling the game for reasons and there are quite a few people thirsting for him.

I like the game. I’ll try the blue blood character at some point, but I don’t know how much longer I’ll play it. It’s interesting, but none of the dialogue choices are ones I’d choose. It’s the bane of dialogue-driven games, unfortunately. One of the choices is usually close enough and I haven’t had a situation where all three choices are completely off. While I like it, however, I just don’t have much compunction to play it. There’s no burning desire so we’ll see if I actually go back to it.

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To Hades with the devil

who's a good boy?
Cerberus is best doggo ever!

I’m still playing Hades by Supergiant Games. Still think it’s a terrific game that is out of my reach. I recently timed how long it took me to do each floor, and it’s 15 minutes for the first floor, 15 minutes for the second floor, and 30 minutes for the third floor. Each floor is a grind though I can whiz through the first floor by now.

Side note: There is an interesting system of giving Nectar to the different characters you meet and they give you a Keepsake in return. Each of the Keepsakes have a different benefit and you can level up each Keepsake the longer you wear it. You can only have one on at a time, and you can only switch them after each floor (if you buy a certain item). That’s my M.O. I switch them out after each floor. There’s also mini-achievements in the game that you have to do in order to get rewards. One is to wear each of the Keepsakes at least once. I have ignored the Keepsakes of many of the Olympian gods because theirs are specific to them and their boons. As I wrote in my past post about this game, some of the gods have clearly superior boons (Zeus and Ares especially).

The third floor of Hades might be my hard stopping point. I don’t die on it any longer, but it takes so much time, effort, and resources to get through it. It’s so fucking tedious, and room after room of spear guys and bow guys is boring as hell. Also, so much twitch reflexes needed. So. Much. I have four total revives (death defiers) on the third floor if I haven’t lost any of them prior (and at this point, I shouldn’t. The fourth is from a Keepsake, and I only put it on after the second floor), and I’m usually down to none by the time I’m done with the third floor boss.

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Brute-forcing Hades

So. Hades by Supergiant Games. What a great game. It’s addictive with that ‘just one more run’ feel to it. It looks great, feels great, and sounds great. And I’m thinking of quitting. Why? I touched about it in my last post about the game and would like to expand on it here.

Side note: It’s going to sound familiar because I had the same issues with Children of Morta by Dead Mage, another great game that I quit cold turkey for similar reasons.

Look. I know balancing a game is hard especially if you’re making a game that is based on difficulty to a certain extent.

(Do NOT mention FromSoft and Souls games. Damn.)

But, my pet peeve in any game is throwing tons of mobs at the player in the name of difficulty. I hate, hate, hate it because I think it’s lazy, boring, and because as someone with terrible reflexes, it’s very stressful. And not in the fun way. I think many of the criticisms for Dark Souls II were overblown, but the one I agree with was that they threw way too many mobs at the player as a way of artificially inflating the difficulty.

What’s more, it’s usually the same enemies over and over again, which makes it boring on top of frustrating. I do not mind the same enemies for the same floor, but this game really overloads the type of enemies for each floor and many of them are ones in which twitch reactions are important. I don’t do twitch reactions, so it’s really frustrating to me.


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Hades is one hell of a good time

In my quest for the next meaty game I can sink my teeth into, there have been misses and there has been one game I’ve been keeping my eye on. It’s called Hades, and it’s a rogue-lite-like by Supergiant Games. Supergiant Games in an indie company that is beloved in the indie community as it were. Their previous games include Bastion, Transistor, and Pyre. All three games were hailed when they came out, and I’ve tried each of them. I’m sure you can tell that I did not fall in love with them by the tone of what I’ve written, and you would be right. I tried. Honestly, I gave at least the first two a fair shake. I could see why they were held in such high regards, but neither of them clicked with me. The third just wasn’t my type of game at all, which I knew before I bought it.

I will say that each game looks gorgeous. Supergiant Games does aesthetics well, and while you can tell an SG game by the look of it, they change it up with each game. They all have vivid color palettes and a dreamy-like look to the graphics. From memory and a few stills, Bastion has earthy tones, Transistor is pastel-y, and Pyre has a more intense but darker color palette. Hades is just bright (but with the same richness of colors). I love the cartoony without being cartoonish feel to the characters (another staple of the games) and I love the theme of this game. I was obsessed with mythology when I was younger, so this is a nice way to scratch that itch.

I gave all three of their prior games more time than I normally would because they were so well-regarded in the indie community. I wanted desperately to like them, but I didn’t. Or rather, I didn’t feel compelled to keep playing. I thought each game was well made and could absolutely see why people were gaga over them. I couldn’t make myself like them, however, and I reluctantly moved on from each. Each time, I felt as if I were the problem, not the game, as if it were a personal failing that I couldn’t really get into the games.

This is the reason I was apprehensive when picking up Hades. In fact, I avoided it for a bit because I was worried that I would feel that way yet again. This game is more beloved than the others, if that’s possible, garnering outstanding scores across the board. The worst Metacritic score is 8.5. That’s the worst. I did watch a YouTuber try it out and liked what I saw, but who knew if it’d be the same when I actually played it? Still. I needed a game and it recently came out of Early Access. That meant it was on sale, so I picked it up. I was hoping it’d be like Binding of Isaac: Rebirth in that I’d be able to play it endlessly despite frustrations with it. BoI: R is far from a perfect game, but there’s something really comforting about playing it.


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