Over the weekend I was able to play a bit of Final Fantasy XV, though I didn’t make any story progress. Like usual, I pretty much just did side quests before getting frustrated at a specific fishing quest.

I played a ton of Garou: Mark of the Wolves, and got all of the trophies in it, though I’m still missing a few gallery items somehow. I’m not sure how to unlock them all, but I definitely want to. I’m hoping they’re just unlockable through normal play and that I’ll get them all with time.

Lastly, I started System Shock: Enhanced Edition, which is the first game in the series with enhanced controls and graphics. I’m actually really liking it thus far, I’ve made it through the entire first area, which is pretty huge, actually. In the year 2072, you play as a skilled hacker who hacks into a space station owned by the Trioptimum Corporation who makes high tech interfaces for human use, among other things. Instead of being punished for his crimes, a man states he can clear the hacker’s name, if he agrees to hack into SHODAN, the space station’s AI, and that the hacker will also be awarded with a military-grade interface. The hacker agrees, does his job, and then gets the interface surgically installed, which requires a 6 month recovery coma. After 6 months, the hacker wakes up to find everyone gone, the place overrun with cyborgs and mutants, with SHODAN having plans on wiping out the Earth. It’s up to the hacker to figure out how to stop SHODAN. It feels very BioShock-esque, which makes sense, seeing as Looking Glass Studios worked with Irrational (of BioShock fame) to release System Shock 2. Seems to me that Irrational picked up some tricks from their time with Looking Glass.

At any rate, it’s a good thing, because I feel the game has aged pretty well, aside from the crazy menu navigation. The story bits are told through audio logs you can find scattered around the ship, and messages from characters such as SHODAN. The game plays kind of like an exploration-shooter, almost like DOOM but with an inventory system and more complex puzzles, like hacking and the weird, Rez-style cyberspace you have to mess around in to unlock doors and things. It’s a really unique amalgamation of gameplay, but it works really well and is pretty fun once you get the hang of it. Enemies can be kind of tough, but you can find plenty of healing items if you scour every nook and cranny and play cautiously.

The atmosphere is fantastic. SHODAN is a fantastic villian thus far, whenever her creepy cybernetic face pops up saying things like “Go any farther and I will kill you”, it sends shivers down my spine. I’m really digging the cyberpunk setting, and I think I feel a new genre of games I want to play…

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These “What’cha Doin’?” posts are designed to spark discussion, so feel free to post in the comments what you’ve been playin’, watchin’, or listenin’ to lately.

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