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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    There are so many great video games that just stay under the radar, despite being fun and/or innovative. Sometimes they outright flop, while sometimes they sell enough copies to turn a profit but never become iconic. Let's talk about them.


    A game I had a lot of fun with is Battlezone (1998), a combined shooter/strategy game. The game involves a secret U.S.-Soviet war being fought on several planets and moons of the solar system during the Space Race. Both factions try to take control of a mysterious metal of extraterrestrial origin and uncover the history of the extinct alien species that created it. As player, you fight from a "hover-tank", give orders to other vehicles, have your factories produce new vehicles, and send out your scavengers to gather metal. There are two separate campaigns, one for the Americans and a shorter but harder one for the Soviets.

    At the time, a shooter/strategy hybrid was fairly innovative, but the game failed to make much of an impression despite positive reviews. It is barely talked about nowadays.
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    Troll in the Playground
     
    SamuraiGirl

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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    I'll toss out Evil Genius. It was very much a Dungeon Keeper clone, except that rather than being some manner of evil demon, you were an over-the-top Bond-villain. You built an evil underground lair, had henchmen and minions to do your dirty work, guarded your lair with nefarious traps like wind turbines, flamethrowers, and BEES, and stole people and treasure from all over the world to increase your prestige and build your doomsday weapon.

    It was a little buggy sure, but it had charm and style, and a modern remake could be great.
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    Pixie in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    I had a thread similar to this, more so "games that you like that may not be known by others" kind of thing.

    But I'll toss in 2 from there.

    Legend of Legaia
    PS1

    This is my favorite game on PS1. It's a turn based JRPG that is unique in it's combat. Rather than just selecting "attack" and your character runs in an hits an enemy, you actually select your attacks by selecting a combination of Up, Down, Left, and Right.
    Up and Down are low and high hits, which may not hit a flying or small enemy.
    Entering certain commands will allow you to preform "arts" or super moves, such as UDU will allow certain characters do a summersault kick.

    You are able to capture certain enemies to use as summons, use items, etc. You take control of 3 characters, Vahn, the main character, Noa, and Gala, each have their own reason for joining you.
    The basic plot is to rid the world of the "Mist," a fog that turns monsters more aggressive and transforms humans into monsters as well. In order to cleanse the fog, you must revive 10 Genesis Trees.

    While the second game for PS2 kept the combo system, updated graphics, and more characters to play as, I found the story to be less enjoyable, it's not a sequel, and I don't honestly remember what the story was about. The summons are character locked as well which could be a good or bad thing, but overall I preferred the first game over this one.
    ---

    The second game will be:
    The Witch and the Hundred Knight
    PS3 with PS4 remastered port

    This game has my favorite character, the main character Metallica (or Metallia in English) the Swamp Witch. A vulgar witch who doesn't care about anyone but herself.
    The story is basically about Metallica summoning the Legendary Hundred Knight to help spread her swamp mud around the world, since she cannot go where the swamp is not.


    The gameplay is repetitive, but I enjoy it. It's played in a top down, isometric view, similar to Diablo or Path of Exile, but in a hack and slash gameplay.
    Art style is similar to Disgaea or Phantom Brave and shares that Nippon Ichi comedy.

    Similar to Legend of Legaia, there is a second game with a different story and different characters, however it's the same Hundred Knight you play as with the same type of combat, and once again, I prefer the first one over the second.
    The second game's main witch is Chelka, the character in my avatar. Can't tell you the story since I've yet to finish the second game.

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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    Seconding Legend of Legaia. So good.

    How obscure are we talking? When I think of my favoritest favorites, theyíre not esoteric by any means.

    Wait wait wait. Ok I got a couple. I was big into RPGMaker games. A Blurred Line was incredible. As was The Way. And To The Moon. And... I forget the title, a German game, gotta look into that. Edit: Schuld

    Ah here we go. Cthulhu Saves the World, and Cosmic Star Heroine. Made by the same people even.
    Last edited by danzibr; 2019-09-26 at 03:32 PM.

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    Pixie in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    Quote Originally Posted by danzibr View Post
    Seconding Legend of Legaia. So good.

    And To The Moon
    Legaia is great. And so is To The Moon, made me cry so hard.
    For River (Johnny's Version) is the first piece I learned on piano

    If nobody has played To The Moon, I would 100% recommend it, it's a short (like 6-10 hours or something, depending on how fast you read) RPGMaker type game

    EDIT:
    I was also really big into the RPGMaker games and went on a binge playing them.

    Another one that's obscure, but does get a good amount of love, is Yume Nikki, a game with hardly any direction and little story

    But 2 more games that I would like to include would be:

    Shadow Madness
    PS1
    Another turn based RPG (I think American?) that I played a long time ago, no real memories of it and I don't think it did that well to be honest, but it's 2 disks, I had to emulate the second disk since mine was too damaged to play (don't you hate when your game has multi disks and you can't play the last one?)
    Check the wiki on this since I don't really have much memories of it.
    ---

    Eternal Eyes
    PS1

    A Tactics RPG that people say ripped off Tactic Ogre, never played TO though so I can't compare. It's another game I don't have much memories of but remember having fun with it.
    Your allies are like, monster summons that can evolve and you're able to catch summons I believe, which even if you have 2 different creatures, some may share a same transformation, and all I remember is having a really strong Card Knight (like Alice of Wonderland)


    These 2 games are ones that I ALWAYS forget the names of, but also remember certain parts
    Last edited by Buji; 2019-09-26 at 04:27 PM. Reason: wanted to add more stuff

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    For semi-obscure freeware games, Exit Fate and Last Scenario are both pretty darn solid. The former is in the style of Suikoden, the latter more of a Final Fantasy as you can probably tell from the name, but they both have neat and distinct turn-based combat styles and entertaining writing.
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    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hunter Noventa View Post
    It was a little buggy sure, but it had charm and style, and a modern remake could be great.
    I'm not sure why, but I get the feeling that you're not the only person who feels that way.

    I enjoyed Evil Genius, but I did feel like the gameplay dragged out in the later parts of the game. Especially once you moved to the second island.
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eurus View Post
    For semi-obscure freeware games, Exit Fate and Last Scenario are both pretty darn solid. The former is in the style of Suikoden, the latter more of a Final Fantasy as you can probably tell from the name, but they both have neat and distinct turn-based combat styles and entertaining writing.
    Yeah, those are both good stuff.

    Speaking of semi-obscure freeware games, Iji is a quite a nice take on the whole "Is it really ok to slaughter your way to victory?" that came years before Undertale.

    Nice platforming+shooting gameplay with multiple weapons (plus hacking and half-lethal kicking), in particular because enemies had friendly fire so you could have a "pacifist" run where you had everybody else shoot each other.

    Also interesting story, in particular since it starts as sci-fi alien invasion and you get to find a bunch of logs telling things from said alien's POV.

    Plus the protagonist's own voice during gameplay would change depending in your actions, from apologizing and sobbing during her first kills to maniacally screaming if you raked too much bodycount.
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    ...so we built a five millionth, three hundreth, twenty first one. That one burned down, fell over, then got eaten by the snarl, but the five millionth, three hundreth, and twenty second one stayed up! Or at least, it has been until now."

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    Gonna drop Eador: Genesis here.

    If you're a fan of the traditional HOMM3 combat and simply want more, this is the game, minus all the frills and have all the jank and balance of a Eastern European game. It was also made by one mad lad, who had since made the game free (though only the Russian version), and passed it over to the community to develop.

    A flawed game, to be sure, but very charming.

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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    I'll second Eador: Genesis. That said for my main submissions I have two different series, one of which is at least somewhat known in niche circles and one of which seems to have flown almost entirely under the radar. In descending order of suspected popularity:

    Dominions. To be fair, the series is obscure partially because its learning curve has some actual overhangs in it, the UI is still barely functional while vastly better than it used to be, and it's just convoluted. Still, it's a 4X game that happily jettisons the vast majority of the conventions of the genre, operating within its own rich mechanical system. This gives it tactical depth, but it also sets it up well to represent the setting - which is where it absolutely shines. It's a fantasy game by way of two Ph.D. professors of mythology, with nations inspired by mythologies from all over the world as written by people with the understanding and familiarity to make really deep references, while also handling tiny details.

    There's also the Conquest of Elysium games by the same developer which are pretty neat, but they'll have to wait for another post.

    Deadly Rooms of Death. These are my very favorite puzzle games, cleverly disguised as dungeon crawlers. You have a series of rooms, 32x38 (though the actual usable space might be well under this), containing various floors, doors, and enemies. You take up one square, with a sword that sticks out one square from you*. Every turn you can either move one square in any direction** or rotate your sword 45 degrees into a different square. The various enemies will then generally move 1 square in accordance with their AI, which is generally overwhelmingly basic and thus entirely predictable.

    This combines to make some very clever puzzles, in a huge variety. In one room you'll be navigating a thick concentric ring made of trap doors you can only step on once, finding a pattern to draw dozen dungeon roaches out of their deep trap door nests without closing yourself off from the exit. In another you'll be luring stone golems to extremely specific tiles so you can kill them and use the piles of rubbles they leave when they die to funnel sword proof serpents that slowly die if they can't move to their death. In yet another room you'll trim the living tar, mud, and gel so that they all grow into each other in precise ways that leave them fully destructible. The palettes of puzzle elements are small enough to deeply remember while large enough to provide a huge variety of tools, and it's beautiful.

    On top of that the games look good - simple, but clear - and are often really hilarious.

    *A few rooms in the later games will have rooms which swap that out with various other weapons at times.

    **Unless you're on special tiles which restrict this, most notably force arrows and ortho tiles.
    I would really like to see a game made by Obryn, Kurald Galain, and Knaight from these forums.

    I'm not joking one bit. I would buy the hell out of that.
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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    Quote Originally Posted by deuterio12 View Post
    Yeah, those are both good stuff.

    Speaking of semi-obscure freeware games, Iji is a quite a nice take on the whole "Is it really ok to slaughter your way to victory?" that came years before Undertale.

    Nice platforming+shooting gameplay with multiple weapons (plus hacking and half-lethal kicking), in particular because enemies had friendly fire so you could have a "pacifist" run where you had everybody else shoot each other.

    Also interesting story, in particular since it starts as sci-fi alien invasion and you get to find a bunch of logs telling things from said alien's POV.

    Plus the protagonist's own voice during gameplay would change depending in your actions, from apologizing and sobbing during her first kills to maniacally screaming if you raked too much bodycount.
    Thanks!

    Iím absolutely getting this. Plus it was made in GM! Iíve been working on a game for years now in GM (off and on, mostly off, but it has been years).
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    Does Cat Quest count?

    because while its not very deep, its a fun short little rpg like game where you wander around a map fighting enemies as a cat adventurer, all the locations are cat puns, and your equipment basically determines your class/fighting style. its very charming and light-hearted.
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leecros View Post
    I'm not sure why, but I get the feeling that you're not the only person who feels that way.

    I enjoyed Evil Genius, but I did feel like the gameplay dragged out in the later parts of the game. Especially once you moved to the second island.
    Well hot damn, lets hope they can fix some of the issues with the original, like the dragging endgame and lack of a proper sandbox mode.
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    Psychic Force, for PS1

    What the internet tells you: this is apparently about psychic people fighting for supermacy and there's actual plot. It's ridiculously easy to learn, and it's honestly pretty mediocre as a game.

    What I would have told you as a 4-6 year old at the time of uk release- SO LIKE THEY'RE MUTANTS LIKE X-MEN AND THEY FIGHT IN THESE LASER GRIDS AND IT'S SO COOL AND I'M LIKE KINDA AWESOME AT IT, the story makes no sense but lasers! flying! people! cityscapes! 3d! so come play with me


    It also had a sequel, a knockoff of bust-a-move with chibi versions of the aforementioned psychic characters, because 90s japanese games were drunk and probably shouldn't be allowed to pick genres with a randomiser.

    I can only assume that the original was an arcade cabinet game at some point but it's surprisingly easy once you work out that ranged attacks are king and which characters do that.
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    Default Re: Let's talk about obscure video games that deserve more love.

    Birthright: The Gorgon's Alliance.
    Coulda been a "2" in there somewhere.

    Strategygame with battles and even a FPS RPG element! Too bad it was made like 20 years before technology could catch up with some of these parts.

    Only the strategymap part worked decently. And then you find out you have almost no turns at all to get anywhere near deep enough into it. It's like trying to play a Paradox strategy game and only get 10 turns.


    And riddled with bugs. And yet if you can imagine how it coudl work it'd be the most awesome game ever made.

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