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Charlie Cobra Reviews (1840 KP) rated the PlayStation 4 version of Genshin Impact in Video Games

Apr 6, 2021  
Genshin Impact
Genshin Impact
2020 | Action/Adventure, Role-Playing
Free to play (2 more)
Gorgeous world full of beauty
Good story and fun to play
"Gacha" game, to unlock new characters and weapons the game utilizes in game currency that you can buy with real world money (1 more)
Multi-player/Co-op mode needs work
Another Example of Free to Play Done Right, Loads of Fun!
https://youtu.be/BFdBTc-vscg
Genshin Impact is a 2020 action RPG game developed and published by miHoYo and produced by Hugh Tsai. It was released for Microsoft Windows, Playstation 4, Android and IOS on September 4th 2020 and backwards compatible for Playstation 5 in November 2020. Genshin Impact is a "gacha game" featuring an open-world environment, action based battle system utilizing elemental magic and character switching. There have been no updates as of late as to when or if the game might release for Nintendo Switch or Xbox. The game has been considered a commercial success due to it's large fan base and grossing over $1 billion dollars within 6 month of it's release.


Taking place in the fantasy world of Teyvat, Genshin Impact, is home to seven different nations, each of which is tied to an element and ruled by a god associated with it. Such as the city-state nation of Mondstadt, whose element is Anemo, the air element and worships Barbatos, the Anemo Archon and the nation of Liyue whose element is Geo, the rock/earth element and worships Rex Lapis (Morax), the Geo Archon. The main story follows a set of twins not from this world, which you can choose to be either the male or female version of. They become the one referred to as the Traveler, which is the main character of the game. They have traveled across many worlds with their twin but have become separated from them by an unknown god in Teyvat. The Traveler travels across Teyvat in search of their lost sibling with their companion, a child-like "fairy" named Paimon and becomes involved in the affairs of the other nations, gods, and the world.


This is a really great game with it's beautiful anime inspired graphics and a bunch of fun. I've been playing since around December and have probably logged in over 80 hours and I still find this game a lot of fun. . It's an open world RPG so you can pretty much go wherever you want although certain locations are going to have enemies you encounter that might be too difficult for you to fight depending on the level of your characters. Notice how I said characters, not character. You're able to have a party of four characters at one time and be able to actively switch between characters in the middle of battle to be able to utilize different attacks and combinations of skills and elements. There are 7 different elements such as Anemo (air), Geo (earth, Pyro (fire), Cryo (ice), Hydro (water), Electro (lightning/electricity), and Dendro which hasn't been revealed yet but is speculated to be nature related since the name has Greek origins and a loose meaning of "tree". The characters all use weapons in fighting and have a couple of different types like archers who use bows, mages or magic users who don't use weapons but only use magical/elemental attacks, spear users, and two different kinds of sword users, a regular size ones and a claymore or bigger sword users. You can press the attack button a couple of times for your character to do their attack action or combo or hold down the button to do a charge attack. Each character also has two unique combat skills based on their element, an elemental skill and a elemental burst. One of them, the elemental skill has a cool down period but can be used again right after and the other, the elemental burst needs to gather energy you get from defeating enemies to charge up before you can use it. Your character has a lot of freedom and can perform a lot of different actions such as running, jumping, climbing, swimming and gliding and these actions are all limited by your stamina. You can even use your elemental abilities to do things like freeze water and walk on top of it and other environment altering actions. The game is really easy to learn but has a lot of different aspects to it that can be a little complicated. For one, characters can have their strength increased with items such as artifacts that have different perks and additional ones for combining similar ones together, they can also get different weapons that also have different perks which can increase in effect by being "refined". You are able to level up your character by using items you get from completing missions and challenges as well as defeating enemies and bosses. Bosses and challenges that reward highly valuable resources are scattered throughout the world and while some bosses can be challenged weekly some challenges can only be completed once. There are also different types of dungeons that can be challenged but the bosses and dungeons take a currency called "Resin" to attempt and you only have so much of it a day until it regenerates. As your characters progress and you complete more of the story and game your Adventure Rank increases unlocking new quests, challenges, and raises the World Level, which is a measure of how strong the enemies in the world are and the rarity of rewards you get from defeating them. There are some good things that make the game a little easier or help you along the way alot too. Like the many teleportation nodes scattered throughout Teyvat that once you find and unlock you can use whenever you want to fast travel to places you have already been and also the Statues of the Seven where you can heal and revive characters. Your characters can die if their health becomes too low and they will still be in your party/group but you won't be able to use them until you revive them and you can also revive and heal your characters by giving them different food items. You can find food all over the place from hunting animals, gathering fruit and vegetables or purchasing them from a store and there is even a little mini-game type thing where you can make dishes yourself around campfires. Ingredients can even be cooked into meals that regenerate health or boost statistics like attack or defense. Items are also dropped from defeated enemies and found in treasure chests that can be used in increasing a character's strength and ore that can be used to refine and enhance weapon strength or create weapons is usually found scattered around too. There's a multiplayer mode that's pretty much a co-op mode and is useful in teaming up to defeat certain bosses and helping out your friends or maybe showing them the ropes but it's definitely lacking and needs some polish. By completing quests you can unlock five additional characters by completing the story but more characters can only be unlocked by the game's "gacha" mechanic and in-game events. This is another part that gets very complicated in my opinion. There are several premium in-game currencies obtainable by playing the game and also by in-app purchases (real money) that can be used to obtain characters and weapons through the "gacha" system. Something most people would say is very similar to the concept of loot boxes or others would say closer to gambling. There is a pity system that guarantees the player will receive rare items after a set number of draws but I hear it can be pretty ridiculous and there are plenty of people who have spent hundreds of dollars or more to get characters or weapons that they really wanted. I just stick with whatever is free and I've had no complaints but they know what they are doing because as I mentioned above this free to play game has made over $1 billion dollars in 6 months since it was released. There are characters and weapons that are only available for a limited time and if you miss out on getting them while they're available you might not get another chance to ever get them again. So like I said this game is super fun and a really great game, I definitely give it an 8/10 and it gets my "Must Play Seal of Approval especially if your a fan of Zelda Breath of the Wild or anime or "gacha" games in general.
  
Terminator: Dark Fate (2019)
Terminator: Dark Fate (2019)
2019 | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
I'd managed to see the Terminator and T2 in a double bill at the cinema and was shocked to discover I hadn't seen the first one... I really thought I had! Retro films on the big screen are amazing and I need to find the person I need to bribe to get some of my favourites shown.

Dani is working hard to help support her family, she's happy and carefree living with her father, brother and dog, Taco. But today is going to change her life forever.

Grace drops into the world violently, her mission is to protect Dani from a machine sent back to kill her. It's a familiar story, but the Rev-9's aren't like the Terminators, they're relentless and nearly indestructible. Grace and Dani find some unexpected back-up when Sarah Connor joins the hunt, aiding their escape and leading them to another ally for their mission.

Straight off the bat I want to say I loved this film, I'm going to compare it to 2018's Halloween. Neither franchise is something I'm an expert in but these new incarnations to me feel quite respectful to the originals and manage to give us a successful modern take. They both create a homage of things that came before them, and I like that.

The film opens in a great way with the interview tape of Sarah Connor and I thought it was really clever to mix it with consistent effects onto the studio logos/trailers. I was also impressed with the flashback scene of Sarah and John... I genuinely thought I'd missed something from the previous films because I hadn't seen this footage. It was in fact done with a body double and some CGI from what I've read. The quality of the effects in this bit were amazing and I couldn't tell that it wasn't actual footage, it really threw me for a loop.

Our original characters have both developed since their outing in T2. Sarah is much more purposeful but I have to wonder what she was doing between the times she recounts during the film. The Terminator has managed to adapt to his own sort of "human" life, which again, looks like it's got a few holes in it, but neither case really had me pondering until after the film. Linda Hamilton gives a relaxed kick-ass action performance, Sarah has clearly honed her skills and has little emotion apart from hatred coursing through her veins when she's on a mission, it gave a satisfying little lift to things for me. I couldn't help but believe her attitude to everything, still a little bit of the crazy about her but her determination to keep the machines from rising gives her laser focus.

The Terminator, now going by the name Carl is left to do his own thing after completing his mission. I don't know how I feel about this, would there not have been programming beyond his original mission? Anyway, I can't go down that rabbit hole. I thought Arnie's performance was really good, he's still got that "unintentionally" funny thing down well and the chemistry between him and Hamilton really shone through. He's also done well to get Carl to be quite natural while still being a giant robot, had he played it human I don't think I'd have been so onboard... though I don't know how I felt about his new career.

Having the enhanced human character of Grace stopped the sequences from being too flat. With the emotionless side of things previously it was difficult to engage with all the scenes. Mackenzie Davis gets to do the Terminator acting while still being human, you get the human panic and the machine reacting and the blend works well. Her relationship with Dani is a nice one to follow and getting to see her backstory in flashbacks... wait, flashforwards... really added to it all.

Sadly I was disappointed with Dani in general, she's just kind of dragged along with everything and even though she was essentially our Sarah Connor of this film there's very little happening with her. Her character doesn't have enough substance, she doesn't have enough in her to play with the big boys around her. Dani is also confusing in the future story for several reasons, including issues with time travel which I'm not even going to get into.

Overall the effects were very good. The way the Rev-9 movies is unnatural and enthralling to watch and Gabriel Luna's performance was impressive when you think about how he'd have to act and react to some of the more sci-fi moments. The effects weren't great throughout though and in the underwater scene with Arnie and the Rev-9 I was frowning slightly at the screen. The whole thing had a rather misty feel to it and was much more distracting than you'd think.

The other thing I feel is worth mentioning is that there are some odd choices with slow-motion shots. I couldn't see any correlation between the shots and why they'd been chosen for this effect, some happened close together and others happened out on their own and hardly any fit naturally into the scenes. The only one that felt right was Grace sizing up her shot early on, it showed us one of her abilities and that worked well, but after that they felt more like they were trying to show off more than actually picking spots that would have any impact.

Dark Fate has a lot of nice little nods back to the originals and that made for a satisfying watch. There's subtle humour and surprisingly some emotional scenes too, I came out of this and felt really content having seen it. Despite my quibbles, or which I now realise there were many, I really enjoyed this film.

What you should do

It's definitely worth a watch, it's some good mindless action and I think it's a good follow on to the original two films.

Movie thing you wish you could take home

Some super robot enhancements wouldn't go amiss.
  
Show all 4 comments.
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Sarah (7794 KP) Nov 7, 2019

They're showing Gremlins next month? Might have to catch that.

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Lee (2222 KP) Nov 7, 2019

Yep, on the 6th December!

Tokyo Highway
Tokyo Highway
2016 | Action
Living in Iowa/Illinois, the saying is that we only have 2 seasons: winter and road construction. Our winters can certainly be brutal, and our road workers and civil engineers deserve major props for the work they do for our communities! Let’s put ourselves in their shoes for a minute. Can you design a structurally secure overpass? How about figuring out the logistics to create an underpass? If a part of your roadway is damaged, can you fix it without causing further harm? These are all things that you must consider in the minimalistic game of Tokyo Highway.

Tokyo Highway is a dexterity game of route building in which players are trying to create a roadway on which their cars will travel. The first player to place all of their cars on the highway is the winner. Originally, Tokyo Highway was for only 2 players, but an expansion has come out to accommodate up to 4 players. This review will address all player counts! To begin the game, hand out components and set up as described in the rulebook for your chosen player count. Select a starting player, and you are ready to begin.

On your turn, you will perform 3 actions: build a column, build a road, and place a car. When building a column, there are 2 things to remember – the column must create a continuation of your existing road, and it must be built exactly 1 level above or 1 level below the column from which it is based. For example, to play off of a column with a height of 2, you must either play a height of 1 or a height of 3. To build a road, take one of your road sticks and place it on the columns so it connects the newly built column to its predecessor. The last part of your turn is to place a car on your road stick, if you have met the placement requirements. The requirements for placing a car are that your new section of road must cross an opponent’s road, either by being the first road to cross over it, or being the first road to cross under it. You may place additional cars on your road stick for additional roads that your segment crosses above/below.


There are a couple of twists in the game, though! First, each player begins the game with a certain amount of Junctions. When you choose to play a Junction, you are allowed to create a column of any height, regardless of the height of its predecessor. Another special power of Junctions is that once you place a Junction, you have the option to branch 2 roads from that single point, instead of only 1 like with regular columns. The other twist? If at any point during your turn, you knock over an opponents’ cars, roads, or columns, you are penalized and must give that opponent the number of equivalent pieces that were toppled from your own personal supply. You then fix the damage, and continue your turn as normal. The game end is triggered when either 1 player has placed all of their cars, or when a player runs out of construction components. The player who places all of their cars first is the winner, or a player that runs out of components loses the game and the other players continue until the game end is triggered again.
For such a seemingly simple game, Tokyo Highway challenges players on 2 fronts: dexterity and strategy. Obviously, your dexterity is put to the test as you try to move steadily, build secure roads, and not topple over any other components in play. It really is harder than it looks, and creates a good physical challenge for players. Strategy comes into play because you have to plan turns in advance and try to anticipate your opponent’s movements in order to create opportunities to place your cars. You’ve got to strategize where you want to build under or over, and then set yourself up for those builds. But you’ve also got to keep an eye on your opponent, because they might unknowingly (or purposefully…) disrupt your strategy with a placement of their own. Players are never idle in this game, everyone is engaged throughout as they plan ahead for success.

My biggest qualm with Tokyo Highway are the rules regarding knocking down roadways on your turn. According to the rules, if you knock anything down, you forfeit components from your supply, and then rebuild the destroyed area. However, as the game progresses and gets more intricate, with roads crossing very tightly together, one misstep could destroy nearly the entire structure. And it is difficult to rebuild since the highway placements vary with literally every turn, and unless you take a picture after every turn, chances are you can’t recreate it from memory. At that point, continuing the game is futile, and then who wins? You either have to restart the game, or just call it then and end it.


The components of Tokyo Highway are pretty great. Everything is sturdy and wooden, and will definitely withstand the test of time. They feel great in hand and are simply just fun to fiddle with between turns! It is a simple and minimalistic game overall, and the components reflect that wonderfully.
So overall, how is Tokyo Highway? I think it is a game with a nearly perfect balance of dexterity and strategy. You must employ both of those to succeed, because focusing on only one will get you nowhere. It definitely offers more than meets the eye, and that is a fun surprise. There is no set game board or layout, so literally every game will be different, allowing for seemingly infinite replayability. It is definitely a game that keeps players engaged and on their toes. Although there are a few issues regarding dexterity ‘accidents,’ the gameplay overall flows well and is logical. Purple Phoenix Games gives Tokyo Highway a speedy 8 / 12.
  
Cosmic Run: Regeneration
Cosmic Run: Regeneration
2018 | Dice Game, Racing, Space
One of the best parts of the board gaming experience is finding a fun group of people with whom to play! Sometimes, though, coordinating a game night is easier said than done. We all must occasionally forego the group experience and face the world as the Lonely Only. But fear not! The world of solo-play is a vast and exciting realm! What follows is a chronicle of my journey into the solo-playing world – notes on gameplay, mechanics, rules, difficulty, and overall experience with solo variations of commonly multiplayer games! I hope this will provide some insight as you continue to grow your collection, or explore your already owned games!

Space – the Final Frontier. Well, not anymore. You’re living in the year 2123, and space travel is not a novel idea. In fact, Earth has become uninhabitable, and the human race must find a new planet to call home! You and your team of explorers have taken to the galaxies to find a suitable replacement for the future of mankind. By befriending aliens and outmaneuvering rival explorers, your team will be credited with the discovery of new colonies on these distant planets. It’s a literal Space Race, so kick on that hyper-drive and take to the stars!

Cosmic Run: Regeneration is a competitive or cooperative dice-rolling game in which players are racing to earn the most victory points by being the first to discover new planets. It’s a Yahtzee-style push-your-luck game where you must roll certain sets of identical dice to advance your ships on the individual planet tracks. Dice can also be used to ‘hire’ aliens or find crystals, which can give you special abilities once per game. The planets must be discovered in a timely manner, though, because passing meteors could cause damage to, or even completely destroy, these planets – this is space, after all. Players earn victory points in three ways – by being the first to discover a planet, based on their position on a planet’s track if they are not the first to discover it, or by retiring sets of aliens. The player with the most victory points once all 6 planets are discovered is the winner! When playing solo, the game is played essentially the same way, with some minor differences. If the solo player discovers all 6 planets before any one is destroyed or before the meteor deck runs out, they win! However, if even a single planet is destroyed or they are not all discovered before the meteor deck runs out, the solo player loses.

I enjoy playing Cosmic Run: Regeneration as a solo game because it’s simple, but not easy. You’re just rolling dice, but you need a strategy. Do you try to advance quickly on the easiest tracks, or do you commit dice to more difficult tracks and hope that the dice rolls will be on your side? Be careful – once you commit a die to a certain track, it cannot be moved. I’ve played so many games where I commit dice to Planet 2 (2-of-a-kind) and end up rolling 3 more of the same number that could’ve been used on Planet 5 (5-of-a-kind) if I’d just committed them there in the first place! A lot of the game is dependent on the luck of the roll, but I feel like you still need a solid strategy to be successful. There’s a good balance between the two – I still feel like I’m in control of the game even though I can’t control how the dice will roll.

The one main difference between solo and group play is that the solo player is allowed to spend VPs to create ‘forcefields’ around planets. This is because in group play if a planet is destroyed, players score points for their track progress, and the game continues. For the solo player, however, if a planet is destroyed, the game is over. When playing solo, I can choose to spend either 5 or 10 VPs to create a forcefield around either 1 or all planets to protect them from meteors for one turn. Without this option in solo play, it would be impossible to win. The first 4 cards of the meteor deck are guaranteed to hit 4 different planets, so right off the bat you are starting at kind of a disadvantage. Each planet only takes 3 hits to be destroyed, so depending on how well the meteor deck is shuffled, the game would be over quickly if I weren’t able to create forcefields. It all comes back to strategy – you have to decide when to spend those VPs and what planets need protecting at any given point in the game.

That being said, scoring VPs is not really easy in solo play. To score points for a planet, you have to physically reach the planet surface – and that can take a while depending on how well you are rolling. You can hire/retire aliens for VPs, but alien cards have a die cost, so if you are hiring aliens all the time, those are dice you are not using to advance on planet tracks. And each turn, planets get closer to destruction if you don’t advance on their tracks fast enough. You can earn VPs when you land on a VP token space – you do not pick up the token if you pass it, you must land exactly on it. So all in all, you can’t afford to protect every planet every turn. You have to strategize carefully about how to risk your hard-earned VPs. The most frustrating thing is when I pay VPs to protect a planet that isn’t even the one that gets hit! 5 VPs gone that I usually can’t get back in a single turn. But that’s all part of the push-your-luck isn’t it? There’s no reward without risk, and sometimes it’s better to be safe than sorry. I’m usually not a very risky game player, but in this game I have to be. Playing it safe is not an option when I’m racing against the meteor deck.

Cosmic Run: Regeneration is a game of strategy with some healthy helpings of luck and risk-taking. You need a solid strategy, but one that is flexible enough to adapt to your dice rolls on any given turn. No game is a guaranteed win – if I win it’s usually at the last possible second. This game is easy to play, but not necessarily easy to win and that’s what keeps me coming back to play. Even as a solo game, it’s engaging and I think it’s pretty fun too!

https://purplephoenixgames.wordpress.com/2019/01/25/solo-chronicles-cosmic-run-regeneration/
  
Disney Villainous
Disney Villainous
2018 | Entertainment
I am a sucker for a great theme. Or themes that turn the game around. Such is the case with Disney Villainous. Not often does a game allow you to play AS the bad guys against the good guys. That premise is interesting to me, and as I saw this release last year, I just knew I had to have it. Now that I have played it several times, with and without the first expansion, what do I have to say about it? Read on.

Disney Villainous (“Villainous” from here on) is a card game that pits players against each other in a race to complete individualized objectives to win the game. Players are in direct competition with each other and have devices to employ to spoil the plans of their competitors. Can Maleficent place out curses on all the lands in her realm before Hades can have three Titans storm on Mount Olympus? Can Prince John attain 20 power before either of them win the game? Such is Villainous.

DISCLAIMER: This game has a few standalone expansions now, with more on the way I’m sure. We are using components from the base game as well as the first expansion, “Wicked to the Core,” for this review. Should we decide to review the expansions as standalone games, we will link to the new material here. Furthermore, I do not intend to cover every single rule included in the rule book, but will describe the overall game flow and major rule set so that our readers may get a sense of how the game plays. For more in depth rules, you may purchase a copy from the publisher directly or from your FLGS. -T

To setup, each player will choose a big bad to play. Each character comes equipped with a colored pawn, a realm board with four locations, a deck of cards with matching pawn colored backs, a Fate deck with white back, and a playbook with tips on how to play that character. Also give every player a reference card that details the actions available. Shuffle each deck separately, give the starting player zero power from the cauldron, the second player one power, the third player two power, etc. Each player draws a hand of four colored back cards. Begin the game with the pawns on the leftmost location on the realm board and you are now ready to play.

Play works thusly: move your pawn to any unlocked location, complete any or all actions available at the location, draw your hand back up to four, next player. You MUST move on your turn, unless a card allows you to stay at your current location on your next turn. Once moved, the location will either show two or four options for actions. These could include play a card, activate a card, discard a card, gain power tokens, move an item or ally, move a Hero card, vanquish a Hero, or play cards from an opponent’s Fate deck. Some actions are self-explanatory (gain power tokens, et al), but some require further explanation.

Some cards will have an activation symbol displayed on them. This means that a pawn has to have been moved to a location with an activate card symbol, and the player must pay to activate the card for its special abilities. Easy. Moving an item, ally, or Hero typically means physically moving the cards from one location to another adjacent location. This is important for some villains’ objectives: cards need to enter play in one location but travel to another as part of the win condition. When a villain moves to a location with the Fate symbol, they will choose an opponent, look at the top two cards of their Fate deck, and choose one card to play and one card to discard. These are especially devious and can greatly hinder the player’s progress. In addition, when a Fate card resides on a realm board it covers the top symbols of a location, thus nullifying the player’s ability to use these symbols on future turns. Using the vanquish symbol requires a Hero to have been played on your board, and having enough strength in allies and items to meet or overcome the Hero’s strength. Heroes and any allies/items used in the fight are then all discarded to the appropriate discard piles.

Play continues in this manner until one player has achieved their victory condition.

Components. I have good and bad news. Good news first. The components are absolutely fabulous! Those pawns. SOOOO good. Each is a somewhat abstracted figure of the villain, but with some concrete callbacks and recognizable features. They are just so dang fun to handle and play with. I think the cards are good quality, but I forgot what they feel like outside of the sleeves I put mine in. The board components are great, the cauldron is flimsy, unnecessary, and unwieldy when putting back in the box, especially if you have one or more expansions. I have not found a decent way to put everything back in one box, so I am resigned to having both boxes with me every time I want to play. That’s the bad. I also have put all my sleeved cards into plastic deck boxes in the main game box along with the cauldron. Everything else gets put in the expansion box. I hope a better storage solution is on the horizon along with future expansions…

So as you can see from our rating graphic on top that we are spread out on this one. I love it, but I don’t see it ever breaching my Top 10 list. It does have a tendency to overstay its welcome with all the Fate cards making it more and more difficult to win the game. Once a player seems to be near winning every other player gangs up, or seems to when I have played. I get that it may come off as a negative, and the play length as well, but it’s all part of villains out-villaining each other. While Josh rated it as a three and may not ever willingly ask to play it, I have it at a five because I think it’s a great game with a wonderful theme, amazing components, and tons of expandability. With that, we at Purple Phoenix Games give Disney Villainous a boding 16 / 24. If you are a big Disney fan, can live with the Take That, and want something that looks incredible on the table, pick it up.
  
Tidal Blades; Heroes of the Reef
Tidal Blades; Heroes of the Reef
2020 | Fantasy
Tidal Blades: Heroes of the Reef (which I shall just call Tidal Blades from here on) is a very successful Kickstarter that funded in 45 minutes and raised over $780,000 with the campaign. I was lucky enough to be able to back this one when it went live, and the hype was REAL. The box is large and in charge, and setup and tear down takes about 14 years, but did I like this one? Dude. YES. We don’t rate Solo Chronicles, but this is a STRONG 6 from me.

DISCLAIMER: As this game is a giant and many reviewers are starting to tackle it using multiplayer rules, I decided I would talk about the differences between multiplayer and solo rules. This review is using the included Solo Mode rules.


Setup for the Solo Mode uses most of the setup rules for the multiplayer game with a few exceptions. In the Solo Mode the player will have one character to control and one Rival to beat. The Rival will need their player board and standee or mini (I have the Deluxe Edition, so it’s minis in my case). In addition, the player will also choose two other characters to be Allies, utilizing their ability cards and minis. The Allies and Rival will be placed on the Champion board ahead of the player to begin the game. The player wins by having more points than the Rival at the end of the game.
Quickly, here is Tidal Blades in a nutshell. Players are attempting to gather the greatest standing on the Champion board (like a VP track) and VP from Challenge cards gained. The players earn these cards by using Actions to move to islands, gather resources, fight monsters, perform boating maneuvers and tricks, and can increase the potential for each of these by upgrading their central board dials. Shells and Fruit are common resources, and each player starts with two Actions per turn. The game lasts four total Days (or phases with several turns in each), and players earn more Action discs on Day two and four. Every time the dice are rolled to complete Challenges a Danger Die is also rolled and can wound the player by forcing a discard of dice. Each Day players can refresh and upgrade used dice to better their skill and concentrate their abilities. After Day four the game ends and players count up points to declare a victor!

Here is how gameplay is slightly different from the multiplayer experience. The Rival always goes first. They will also have one more Action disc to use on their turn (unfair, right?). When they begin their turn, a Challenge card is drawn. Whichever Island is featured on the card is to where the Rival will travel. Once arrived, the amount of VP awarded on the card is how many spaces from the top of the Island the Rival will be placed. Depending upon which Island the Rival ends the Challenge card will then be placed under the Solo Mode mat and a special action taken. The special actions could be revealing and resolving a Plot card in Droska Ring (special to Solo Mode), removing Monster hits from the Fold in the Chronosseum, or moving the boat in Lamara Stadium. The Judge location also plays a role in special actions should the Rival land on the same Island as they are. Other special goodies await, but I will leave you to discover those.


On the player’s turn, if the player is tied with or ahead of their Allies on the Champion board, the player will be able to use the Allies on their turn. This is handled similar to having an extra Action disc on the player’s turn. Send the Ally to a location and reap the rewards. Otherwise, for the player, turns are the same.
Components. Let me tell you: if you have the extra money to splurge for the Deluxe Edition, DO IT. The minis are amazing, the plastic shells are awesome, and those squishy fruit are so perfect! Obviously the game is perfectly playable and enjoyable with the basic components, but the improved bits are really something special. The cardboard everything is great, the GameTrayz inserts are incredible, and the art and colors are simply magical. I cannot say enough excellent things about what comes in this massive box. Druid City Games and Skybound Tabletop got everything right with this one.

It should be no surprise that I am in love with this game. Yes, it’s a Solo Chronicles, and I played by myself. I get that. Eventually I will be able to play this with others and by then I will be so engrossed in the lore that I will have no problems hyping up my playmates. Tidal Blades is an absolutely gorgeous game with so much going on that I don’t think I will ever tire of it. The game lasts four days but I wish it were a month because I just want to keep playing! The decisions to be made are all wonderfully delicious and there always seems to be too few on your turn. Yes, I know that sounds like all worker placement games, but it is especially true here. Almost every spot on the board gives immediate benefits that can be used, so even when a location is occupied, there will always be another of equal importance to your character. It’s so good.

Like I said before, I love the art and colors used. This is a stunner of a game on the table. It does take up quite a bit of room, especially if you use the arena dice tray (which I didn’t because I play at night when the kids are asleep and a hard plastic dice tray wakes up children). I count myself lucky to have the Deluxe Edition as well because those upgraded bits really make the game feel deluxe and fancy.

The Solo Mode is very good, and at least for me, very difficult to win. The combination I used for this review was playing as Axl against my Rival Caiman. Obviously switching out characters and using different Allies will change up the feel a bit, and I really cannot wait to try out all the permutations. When a game begs you to play it as often as you can and you look at it lovingly on your shelf, you know you have a Top 10 game, and a treasure in your collection.
  
Soul Raiders
Soul Raiders
2021 | Adventure, Exploration, Fantasy
Check out that cover art! Amazing! If there is one thing that will certainly help my enjoyment of any game, it is definitely great art and components. Yes, I want the game to play well, but if it also looks great, that merely sends it soaring for me. While Soul Raiders has great art in spades, will I equally love the gameplay? Spoiler: yeah, it’s a pretty good game!

Soul Raiders is a storytelling role-playing game for up to four players. Each player takes the role of an aspiring Soul Raider tasked with saving the realms from the influence of evil. The game is played over several sessions that all affect the overarching plot of the narrative, but this preview version simply allows players to learn the game mechanics through a prologue scenario.

DISCLAIMER: We were provided a prototype copy of this game for the purposes of this review. These are preview copy components, and I do not know for sure which final components will be different from these shown. Also, it is not my intention to detail every rule in the game, as there are just too many. You are invited to download the rulebook, back the game through the Kickstarter campaign, or through any retailers stocking it after fulfillment. -T


To setup, follow the instructions in the rulebook. There are too many to list here. Once setup, the play area may look similar to the photo below.
As there are 36 pages in the preliminary rulebook, I am unable to detail everything in this preview. However, I can give an overall gameplay feeling.

Players control pawns (standees in this version, but plastic minis in the final) that will adventure on Location tiles that spawn baddies, traps, and other elements. Each round played has no turn structure; players can take their actions however they like in any order, and sometimes players will take actions simultaneously. Once all players have taken their actions, the baddies will attack (though some attack immediately upon spawning in a Location as well).

Combat is resolved through clever chaining card play. The cards drawn to the players’ hand are multi-use and can be combined with others in hand to pull off complex combos. All players will have access to melee combat cards, movement cards, and also magic spell cards. Utilizing the cards efficiently, as well as leveraging each players’ inherent strengths, can make or break combats and skill checks throughout the game.

In addition to the myriad combats players will face, they will also be able to encounter events, special characters, and traps. Many times these will result in skill checks or other card shedding activities in order to progress the story.

Throughout the game a tracker board constantly keeps players aware of the current vitae of the party (collective health), threat level, and active events. Players will also be using personalized player boards to keep track of their deck of cards, active engaged enemies, and status tokens. Each character has special talents different from each other, and the final game will have at least four characters, whereas this version has two.


If the players can navigate the game efficiently and quickly enough to satisfy the win conditions, then victory is to be shared. However, if you, like me, are still trying to figure out how to win, the game ships with an interesting session saving ability so you can pick up where you left off with any combination of players and characters.
Components. Again, this is a preview copy of the game, and not everything is final. That said, I can see the direction this game is going, and if it results in a successful Kickstarter campaign, I foresee me praising the publisher for their excellent components. Most of the art seems complete, and the character art is so amazing. In contrast, I feel the landscape art doesn’t necessarily match the intensity and details given in the character art. It just feels out of place in an otherwise excellently-illustrated game.

The gameplay, however, felt very fresh and familiar at the same time. I have played several games where the players’ card decks offer multi-use cards in much the same fashion, and here in Soul Raiders, the cards can be played for their numeric values or their special abilities. What I like about this is the ability to use the cards in hand to pull off sweeping combos of insane damage, or to really nail the lockpicking difficulty checks. There will be times the heroes will need to be engaged in combat with four or more enemies, and having certain spells that can wipe out most of them with one card is always very satisfying.

Movement has largely been neglected in my plays of Soul Raiders, as I haven’t found a great way to make it sing as a card type. Players will need to use movement to travel from one Location card to others, but there are also mechanics in place for the heroes to flee away from battles. I have yet to feel the need to flee from battle. I also have yet to truly understand the need for a big selling point for the game – character invisibility. Yes, I can see how being invisible would be a great benefit, but I rarely had the ability cards in hand to use it properly or effectively. I am told, though, that the game will ship with both a normal character mini and a transparent mini to indicate when they are invisible. So there’s that.

All in all I really do enjoy the storytelling gameplay of Soul Raiders. I think this intro prologue scenario has piqued my interest and triggered my desire to play more in the story. I hope that some adjustments will be made to make invisibility and fleeing more important aspects of the game, but for now I am ignoring them almost systematically. That said, if you are looking for a new game with a great theme and some pretty good mechanics, I invite you to check out the Kickstarter campaign launching very soon. I think this would be a great one to have in a collection, especially as I can see it being infinitely expandable with new books of scenarios and small expansion packs with new heroes, etc.
  
You're Pulling My Leg!
You're Pulling My Leg!
2005 | Party Game
At the time I am writing this preview, the world is in the midst of a pandemic. That being said, the need for social distancing and quarantining has really affected the board gaming world. Without being able to have normal game nights, gamers must be creative in figuring out how to continue to play together, while still maintaining safe and healthy distances from one another. And one game that offers a solution is You’re Pulling My Leg!

Disclaimer: We were provided a copy of this book for the purposes of this preview. The pictures below show the final production copy you can expect to receive when ordering this game. Check out the publisher’s website to get your hands on this unique party game! -L

You’re Pulling My Leg! is a party game of bluffing and storytelling in which players are trying to be the first to earn 21 points. The rules are simple, the gameplay is straightforward, and it can even be played remotely!

To setup the game, every player needs a coin and a way to keep track of their score (paper/pencil, notes on a phone, etc.). Every player begins the game with 7 points. To start the game, choose a player to be the first Storyteller. The Storyteller selects a card from the book, reads the three questions on their chosen card, and chooses 1 to answer. The Storyteller then flips their coin – if HEADS, the answer must be a true story, but if TAILS, the answer must be false and untrue in essence. Only the Storyteller knows the result of the coin flip. The Storyteller proceeds to answer the question, telling a story dictated by their coin flip result.

After the Storyteller has told their response to the chosen question, the remaining players will vote (with points) on whether they believe the story was true or false. Players can vote with up to 3 points, and votes are revealed simultaneously. If you believe the story is TRUE, you vote with 1, 2, or 3 fingers pointing UP, and if you believe the story is FALSE, you vote with 1, 2, or 3 fingers pointing DOWN. After everyone has voted, the Storyteller reveals whether the story was true or false, and points are added/deducted accordingly. If a player voted correctly, they add the number of points with which they voted to their score. If they voted incorrectly, subtract the voted points from their score. The Storyteller can earn 1 point for each other player they have fooled, up to a maximum of 3 points per story. After tallying points, choose a new Storyteller and begin again – each player should have a chance to be the Storyteller once before repeating Storytellers. Play continues in this fashion until one player has scored 21 points, and is declared the winner!

At this point in my life, the thing I love about You’re Pulling My Leg! the most is that it can be played remotely. Everybody does not need to have an individual copy of the book to play via video chat or conference call. As long as one person has the book, your group can play! Instead of having each player read their own cards then, the owner of the book reads the cards aloud and the Storyteller chooses their question that way. The only supplies needed, apart from 1 copy of the book, are a coin and a way to track your score. Easy as pie. Another aspect of this game that I really enjoy is that it is pretty light-hearted in nature. Yes, there is an element of deception and bluffing, but it is all done in a light and quirky way. I especially enjoy this because I am a notoriously bad liar, and most bluffing games stress me out. But the ability to choose my question, and then weave a (hopefully) convincing story for my opponents takes some of that pressure off and allows me to really be creative and have fun.

That being said, one tricky thing about this game is that when coming up with a false story, if must be false in essence. You cannot tell a mostly true story with a few trivial details changed. People who have trouble with storytelling or improv-type scenarios might have some difficulty in coming up with an appropriate story for the different questions. Just something to be aware of – you have to be able to come up with a story on the fly, with no hints or help whatsoever. Another tricky, yet usually fun, aspect of this game is that some cards have a Wild feature which can immediately affect someone’s score. For example, one Wild feature might say “Player with the longest hair gains 3 points.” That goes into effect immediately once the card is selected, and can put a fun twist and some good-natured take-that into this storytelling game. The process of voting with points adds an element of strategy as well. How confident are you that someone’s story is TRUE? Are you willing to bet 3 points on it? It’s a balance of risk and reward, and that adds excitement to the game table.

Let me touch on components for a minute. This game is a book, where each page contains 3 cards. You can start at card #1 or select a random page and pick a card there, but there are 225 cards from which to choose! On every other page there is also a blank page titled “Game Highlights,” and this space is for you to write down any particularly hilarious or creative responses someone may have come up with in response to a card. It’s not a game requirement, but just an element of fun for future reminiscence. The quality of the book is pretty good, and I know it is sturdy enough to withstand lots of travel and play.

So all-in-all, I think that You’re Pulling My Leg is a great and light little game to get your creative juices flowing. If you need an ice-breaker for a game night, this would definitely be a great one to get to know your gaming comrades. Is it a game I will pull out at every game night? No. But it is a fun and light-hearted game that I can see myself pulling out with different gaming groups on several occasions. Whether a family reunion, office party, or friend Zoom call, this game is one that will entertain all involved. If you’re looking for something unique, fun, and relatively simple overall, give You’re Pulling My Leg! a shot. It might just open the door to storytelling based games for you!
  
Skulls of Sedlec
Skulls of Sedlec
2020 | Card Game, Medieval
When it comes to board gaming, bigger does not always necessarily mean better. And that is something that Button Shy Games has really embraced. With all of their wallet games comprising of only 18 cards, they always manage to pack a lot of game into one small space. I think they’ve got the right idea – engaging gameplay, multitude of themes and mechanics, and easy storage and transport! So how does their newest game hold up to their other successful wallet games? Keep reading to find out!

Let us travel back to the 16th Century AD. You are a monk working in the Sedlec Ossuary, a chapel in the Czech Republic. The coincidental timing of the Black Plague and the Hussite Wars has led to some serious overcrowding in the Sedlec graveyard. Working under a half-blind monk, you and your fellow underlings have been tasked with exhuming graves and artfully arranging the skulls in the crypt. Who can create the most unique and tasteful display of skulls? There’s only one way to find out.

Disclaimer: We were provided a prototype review copy of this game for the purposes of this preview. The final components may vary once the Kickstarter campaign has concluded, so the published game may look differently than the one presented in these pictures. -L

Skulls of Sedlec is a game of card drafting and hand management in which players are trying to amass the most points by the end of the game. Here’s how it works. To set up, shuffle all 18 cards. Create a 2×3 grid of 6 facedown piles consisting of 3 cards each. Pick any pile and flip one card face-up from the top. You are now ready to begin! The game is played over a series of turns in which players will draft and play cards into their personal Stack, an arrangement of cards in a pyramid shape. Each card has 2 skulls on it, and each skull earns a certain number of points based on its placement in your Stack. For example, Criminal skulls are vying for redemption in the afterlife, so they score 2 points if they are adjacent to any Priest skulls. At the end of the game, the player with the highest scoring Stack is the winner!

During the game, on your turn, you will take one of these three possible actions: Dig, Collect, or Stack. When you choose to Dig, you choose 2 facedown piles in the graveyard and flip their top cards face-up. Once you have done that, choose one of the two cards you flipped to take into your hand. If you choose to Collect, you simply choose any face-up card from the graveyard and take it into your hand. There is a hand limit of 2 cards per player, though, so if you already have 2 cards in your hand you may not take the Collect action. If you choose to Stack, you select one card from your hand and add it to your Stack, following the placement rules – Stacks are built from the bottom up. Your first card will be placed into the bottom row of your Stack. Depending on how many players are in the game, your Stack will require a different number of cards in each row. A card may only be played into a higher row if it is directly centered over two cards on the row beneath it. Logical enough! The game ends when each player has completed their Stack. Points are then added, and the highest score wins.

As I mentioned earlier, the size of the game does not always dictate the quality of the game, and Skulls of Sedlec is the perfect example of that. For only consisting of 18 cards, it takes a good deal of strategy to claim victory. There are 5 different types of skulls, and they earn points in different ways depending on their placement. You really have to be thinking in advance as to how you want to play the cards in your hand, and what other skulls you need to pick up to maximize your score. You can also see the Stacks of your opponents, so you know what you’re up against. You need an adaptive strategy for success based on the current cards available in the graveyard, as well as potentially anticipating your opponents’ moves. Be careful, though, because once a card has been played to your Stack, it cannot be moved.

Components. Again, this is just a preview copy of the game, but the card quality is already great. It might be something upgraded during the Kickstarter campaign, but if it’s not, you’re still getting a high quality game. Of course, the trademark wallet is on par with the rest of the wallet series, and it protects the cards well. The artwork of Skulls of Sedlec might not be awe-inspiring, but it is still colorful, thematic, and well-done. I appreciate the simplicity of the cards because it makes it easier to see the card types throughout the game and final scoring. You can clearly tell which skulls are which, so the game does not grind to a halt while trying to figure out what the scoring requirements are for a particular skull. And each skull type has a corresponding symbol, which can help our color-blind friends play the game – instead of relying solely on color, the symbols help differentiate the cards. So big kudos there!

As someone who does a fair amount of solo playing, I would like to mention the solo expansion of Skulls of Sedlec, Monstrance. Again, this is a preview of the solo expansion, so final rules and components may vary from those described here. When playing Skulls of Sedlec as a solo game, you will be creating a Stack like in a multiplayer game, as well as a Feature. The Feature you build will have a shape different to that of your normal Stack, and is determined by the Feature card you select at game setup. You will also select a second Feature card, which will be flipped over to reveal a new condition or effect for the game (for example, Romantics in the Stack do not score). Create a graveyard of 4 facedown piles of cards, evenly spread throughout the piles. You are then ready to play.

Gameplay is similar to that of a multiplayer game, but the solo player does not have a hand of cards. Instead, every card that you select will be immediately played into your Stack or your Feature. Placement rules are the same for the Stack, and cards in your Feature must be supported from below or adjacently. When both your Stack and Feature are complete, the game is over and you tally up your score. The solo expansion offers scoring milestones to compare with your score. See if you can best yourself and become a Legendary Artisan instead of remaining a Humble Monk.

Personally, I am not a huge fan of beat-your-own-score solo expansions. That being said, the gameplay of the Monstrance solo expansion still requires decent strategy and thought to maximize your final score. The addition of Features to solo play add another level of strategy because placement is just as important there as it is in your general Stack. Another neat twist is the addition of effects/conditions in solo play. They affect your strategy and make for a unique game every play.

Overall, I would say that Skulls of Sedlec is one of my favorite ButtonShy Games that I have played. It’s fast to play, simple to teach and learn, yet strategic enough that it keeps you engaged the entire time. Another thing I love about it is that it is only a 2-3 player game. We all know that getting together for game nights can be tricky, so I can see myself bringing Skulls of Sedlec to many game nights in which maybe only a few of us could attend. I’m glad I got the opportunity to preview this game, and I will be following the progress of the campaign for sure. If you’re looking for a small filler that still keeps your brain working, definitely consider backing the Skulls of Sedlec campaign!
  
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Mothergamer (1319 KP) rated the PlayStation 3 version of Fallout New Vegas in Video Games

Apr 3, 2019  
Fallout New Vegas
Fallout New Vegas
2010 | Role-Playing
Once I finished Fallout 3, I went on to playing Fallout New Vegas. I really liked the opening introduction to the game's main story line because it hooks you in right away showing just a glimpse of the underlying chaos in the Mojave wasteland with a pretty badass introduction narrated by Ron Perlman. Then you get to meet your main character the Courier who is in a messed up situation as they're getting mugged for a platinum chick they're delivering and some jerk in a checkered suit is explaining that the Courier has made their last delivery and while it may seem like bad luck, it's just that the game was rigged from the start. I knew right then it was going to get worse and it did as he shot the Courier in the head. I admit my initial thought was, how the heck is this going to work if the main character is dead? I got my answer fairly quickly as it showed the Courier waking up in a bed with an old man hovering over her looking concerned and asking if she was alright. The man introduced himself as Doc Mitchell and explains how the Courier survived thanks to a Securitron robot named Victor and the adventure of Fallout New Vegas begins in a town called Goodsprings.

Goodsprings of course gives you a chance to explore and get familiar with the game controls and how everything works. The controls are much better here than they were in Fallout 3 which made me happy. It also introduces you to the people in the town and you get a couple of quests from them. You also get a chance to speak with Victor the robot who saved your life. Honestly, I found Victor to be really creepy. He seemed friendly enough with his cowboy icon face and talking in a friendly cowboy drawl, but there was just something weird about him. It also didn't help that he kept popping up in odd places during my adventures and seemed to be following me. He did own up to it which I will give him, but he was creepy.

Once the tutorial introduction and quests are finished, you get to really explore the Mojave with the main goal being to find Benny; the man who stole the platinum chip from you and shot you leaving you for dead to get answers. For me it was to get answers, get the platinum chip back, and beat the crap out of him. I was still pretty ticked off about that whole ordeal with him shooting me.

To say that the world of Fallout New Vegas is big is an understatement. It is huge and you get an immediate sense of just how vast the Mojave wasteland is as you explore it. There are three big main factions fighting for control of the Mojave and the Hoover Dam and your decisions throughout the story affect which side you will help. There's the NCR a military expansion government, Caesar's Legion a group of Roman style slavers, and Mr. House the mysterious ruler of New Vegas.

There are so many side quests to do alongside the main story quests which isn't a bad thing. A lot of them were fun to do and the companion quests are interesting especially for the character of Boone. I liked Boone a great deal. There was a complexity to him that was intriguing and as my Courier got to know him better there was an understanding of why he was the way he was and a path towards him atoning for some of his past. It made for a great companion story and by the end of Boone's personal quest I liked him even more.


While I enjoyed Fallout New Vegas, there were many frustrating issues with it that had me swearing up a storm when they happened. The major thing were the constant dropped frame rates and freezing that caused the game to crash. When the game worked, it was a lot of fun to play. It just killed it for me when the game would freeze every couple of hours. I make sure to save my game often anyway with my games and I think that games like New Vegas are why. I did all the tricks too with clearing the cache on the PS3 and rebooting and it would still crash after a bit of time. That's incredibly irritating when I want to fully enjoy a game.

Then there's the weird quest bugs. I couldn't finish a quest for a couple of my companions because in one the quest item was nowhere to be found and in the other a quest the NPC I needed to complete the quest had disappeared completely. There were also occasions where I would get stuck in a wall or my companion would and I would have to reload my last save. I understand that there are going to be bugs and glitches in a game sometimes, they happen. However, the vast amount of glitches, bugs, and technical difficulties is inexcusable. I know that Obsidian the developers that worked on New Vegas apologized for all of that, but the thing is slapping a band aid on it is not going to cut it. For as long as the game has been out and the patches they had to fix the game, it should be fixed and yet those irritating issues remain.


Speaking of the DLC quests, I wanted to like all of them. I really did, but there were so many flaws. I only really liked two of the quests out of four. That's saying something. One of them I just could not stand at all. That was the Dead Money quest. I could not stand Dead Money. It was very clunky with the navigation and hard to see at some points. Getting gassed and waking up in a strange place without any of my gear and some crazy ex Brotherhood of Steel jerk was not good. As part of the story you also have a slave collar around your neck that happens to be on the same frequency as the radios in the surrounding areas and if you don't destroy the radios the collar will explode and kill you. This is an exercise in futility as every damn five minutes the collar beeps and you have to figure out exactly where the radio is. I found this tedious and slow which made this quest one of the worst I have ever played and I played Dragon Age The Descent. Yeah, I said it. The ending was a little satisfying, but not much because you don't really get anything out of it except a little payback to the egomaniac who put me through that nonsense.

Old World Blues was alright, but I hated the fact that once again I'm basically drugged and wake up in a strange place without all my gear. Seriously, was this the same writer for Dead Money? So I had to figure out where I was and I met the insane scientists in robot bodies who had brought me there. The thing that kept Old World Blues moderately entertaining for me was the humor. There were moments that had me laughing especially when one of the scientists claimed that my toes looked like tiny penises. There were some cool places to explore and some interesting things to see. The big thing that makes Old World Blues shine are the smartly written jokes and the humor about trying to understand another species and the differences between you. That's what made it fun for me.


The Lonesome Road was disappointing for me. It started out strongly with the introduction of this other mysterious courier, Ulysses demanding you show up to answer for what happened in a place called The Divide. There isn't really a strong urge to explore and it just seems to be travel from point A to point B. During that time you get to hear Ulysses drone on and on about the NCR, the Legion, and how you were the catalyst for nuclear missiles blowing up in the Divide. I like history a lot, but Ulysses made it freaking boring because he kept harping on the same thing repeatedly. It shows just how nuts Ulysses is because essentially he's blaming a mailman for something that had nothing to do with them. What happened in the Divide was an accident and while yes the Courier was delivering the package (a detonator) that awoke and caused all that, they had no idea what it was. The NCR did however and probably the Legion, so that's on them. Look, I get it. Ulysses had something very traumatizing happen to him and he needed something or someone to blame in order to be able to wrap his head around it, but when I was there face to face with him all I could think was, this whole thing was not my fault and you're crazy! I mean he wanted to punish a bunch of innocent people for the traumatizing thing for just a chance to wipe out the NCR and the Legion; that does not sound like someone who is operating at full capacity. Luckily, my speech, intelligence, and science perks were high enough that I convinced him peacefully that destroying all those people would help and even earned his respect. It's obvious in the writing that they meant for Ulysses to be a companion, but I guess they couldn't quite figure out how to make it work and this is what happened. It was okay, but it wasn't perfect and they could have made this a great story instead of a mediocre one.

Once I finished all those, I wrapped up the game with the final quest which was the battle for Hoover Dam. I had decided to help the NCR because while they're far from perfect I felt that they were a better choice than the group of rapist slavers that represented Caesar's Legion. I also liked and respected the fact that the NCR seemed to be protecting the idea of democracy and while they had their flaws, they were at least trying to do something good. The battle for the dam was epic and because I had successfully convinced the minor factions to join the NCR I had a lot of help battling Caesar's Legion. I totally loved the Boomers with their salvaged airplane taking out Legion soldiers from the sky. We fought hard and the battle was won; the NCR still had control of the dam. The game ends then showing all the different things that happen to the people and areas in the Mojave depending on your choices. Overall, the ending was pretty good and I was glad to see that many of my choices helped a lot of people who needed it. I can honestly say that I enjoyed playing Fallout New Vegas in spite of the technical issues and I'm glad I only paid 10 bucks for it. When the game works, it is worth playing and there is lots of adventuring to do with a great main story and solid side stories. Play through it at least once is my take on it.