Monthly Archives: January 2016

Ranonauts – Based Alien

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I cannot believe we got away with that. Sure we had to save/load but I fully blame a combination of clumsy interface and cat based shenanigans for the need to do that. I was really pleased to see that vehicles are not completely useless when assaulting an alien base too. Sure it would be realistic for the alien base to simply have corridors too narrow for the car to fit through but that would be genuinely annoying as a player given we would only actually learn that when we arrive at the alien base, far too late to bring out other soldiers instead.

The Ranonauts Project would like to offer it’s congratulations to:

  • RebelliousUno for handling the first Plasma weapon humanity has manufactured in it’s first combat mission
  • Ranonauts for using Space-Time bending autosave technology to avoid bullshit
  • Narmio for killing the alien commander

The Ranonauts project would like to welcome the following soldiers into the fold:

  • Lugh the Merry
  • Northerner
  • One NPC soldier

The Ranonauts would like to offer its condolences to the families of the following officers:

  • Antitonic
  • Lugh the Merry

To date Ranonauts has:

  • defended the earth for 3 months
  • lost 26 soldiers
  • killed 149 aliens in 18 ground battles
  • captured 17 aliens
  • shot down 20 alien spacecraft
  • had 1 aircraft shot down
  • received $8,092,621 in funding

Ranonauts is in desperate need for new recruits after recent… incidents, if you or a friend would like to become a soldier in the Ranonauts project please leave a comment or fill in your information here, the next set of new soldiers will arrive in episode twenty-one.

Torment Thursday – Character Creation 1

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Torment: Tides of Numenera has reached beta, we previously checked out the Alpha Systems Tests and it will be interesting to see what changes have been made to those scenes. A word of warning however, the beta uses content from the critical path of the game, so the content this series covers will contain spoilers for the final game. Some elements may change, especially in terms of UI, puzzles or combat but I would not anticipate any of the major story beats changing.

The first part of this episode is literally the same as Alpha Systems Test 1, and largely I feel my initial feedback remains the same, I really hope that they provide more visuals to go along with the text here. There is a lot of really cool descriptions and scenes happening in the text but we don’t really get to see any of it, a few still pieces of art to go along with the sound and text would go a long way.

Unfortunately we also had some… technical difficulties in the Attunement chamber, frustrating in the moment but we are dealing with a beta after all. It shouldn’t have much impact to you guys but I will have to play through the early parts again before I can record the next episode.

See you next Thursday!

Ranonauts – The Dumbest Thing I Have Seen

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With the activation of the Jackal Armour mod and the arrival of the monthly budget. The Ranonauts Project is officially entering minor cheats territory. We are reintroducing one of the few features Xenonauts deliberately tries to avoid copying from X-COM. The ability to redirect manufacturing efforts to purely economic ends through making items that cost less than their sale price. Without that we are doomed to a fairly slow reduction in capabilities until we lose. I just don’t think that is very fun.

We also get to watch the dumbest thing I have seen in Xenonauts so far. It looks like Charlie paid a lot less attention to his RPG lessons than I expected. Frankly I am surprised that “Don’t shoot the wall in front of you” is a lesson that needs to be taught, let alone one that might not be absorbed fully by the student but here we are.

The Ranonauts Project would like to offer it’s congratulations to:

  • The alien captain for taking out 4 Ranonauts single-handedly

The Ranonauts would like to offer its condolences to the families of the following officers:

  • Pedro260
  • Ventilator
  • 2 game generated soldiers

To date Ranonauts has:

  • defended the earth for 3 months
  • lost 23 soldiers
  • killed 131 aliens in 16 ground battles
  • captured 14 aliens
  • shot down 20 alien spacecraft
  • had 1 aircraft shot down
  • received $8,092,621 in funding

Ranonauts is in desperate need for new recruits after recent… incidents, if you or a friend would like to become a soldier in the Ranonauts project please leave a comment or fill in your information here, the next set of new soldiers will arrive in episode twenty-one.

Indie Wonderland: Punch Club

Man, the first month of 2016 just has me riled up. Death here, taxes there, website troubles up and down, and not a cake in sight. If only I had some way to relieve my angry tensions. Maybe some sort of social group built for that exact purpose and meeting in repeated, agreed-upon intervals. Like, I dunno. Some sort of club.

For punching.

And hey, would you look at that! With almost eerie timing, Lazy Bear Games and tinyBuild deliver unto us Punch Club! A game that has about a 25% chance of being exactly what I need it to be; it could, after all, also be a game about non-alcoholic mixed-drink enthusiasts, about a stick of wood with a boxing glove, or about a magical wand that provides an endless amount of sugary drinks.

Only one way to find out which one it is.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, medium. Mechanical, high.)

(Game source: Bought it myself.)

After the break: PUNCHING! Of some variety. As soon as I join the requisite club.

Ran Story – Confession

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I was pretty surprised by the video we see towards the end of this episode. I have spent so much time trying to dig into the back story of Eve and Hannah and ignored basically everything about the murder itself, getting an explanation from Eve, almost a straight confession felt like it came out of the blue. I am pretty sure that video in particular is what triggers the “You done” message, which I have of course opted not to accept, there are still many videos left to uncover. The confession included so many details that I hadn’t heard of before, but the broken mirror and the watch. Next time I should try to find those.

My notes from this episode can be found here

 

 

Ranonauts – Rocketeering

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The rising lethality of these missions combined with the continuing budget problems has lead to a really simple solution. Use more rockets. Sure we are much less mobile and we recover significantly less loot when we do this but morale is higher than it has ever been. Turning aliens into exploded smears of debris from a distance is much safer than trying to riddle them with bullets. You just don’t have the same need for accuracy, the hope is that more and faster assaults on alien ships will make up for our incredible budget shortfalls.

The Ranonauts Project would like to offer it’s congratulations to:

  • Nikita and the Hunter crew for the liberal and effective use of rockets
  • Team Soviet Europe for two successive alien ship raids with no casualties

To date Ranonauts has:

  • defended the earth for 2 months and 23 days
  • lost 19 soldiers
  • killed 124 aliens in 16 ground battles
  • captured 13 aliens
  • shot down 20 alien spacecraft
  • had one aircraft shot down
  • received $6,350,947 in funding

Ranonauts is in desperate need for new recruits after recent… incidents, if you or a friend would like to become a soldier in the Ranonauts project please leave a comment or fill in your information here, the next set of new soldiers will arrive in episode nineteen.

Ranonauts – Magic Walls

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There is definitely something a little frustrating with Xenonaut’s terrain blocking. Edges block a much wider range than I feel is reasonable. I first noticed this with UFOs near the entrances, but here it was lethal, one Andron took down a surprisingly large number of men because it was tough and standing right next to a wall. I felt pretty cheated by Xenonauts here, it lead to a rage-quit on the day and a re-evaluation of how much I want to keep going with this game.

The Ranonauts Project would like to offer it’s heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of the following soldiers:

  • Lon Lon
  • Warstrike
  • Pietro Bianchi
  • Scimitar
  • Fredagar

The staff here would like to make special mention that San Salvador and it’s brave people remain in our thoughts and prayers, we only wish that we had had the funding for aircraft closer to hand.

Congratulations to:

  • Narmio for charging into the back half of an alien ship armed only with a stun grenade
  • Scimitar for doing taking out the Andron after being reassured only twice
  • Lon Lon for taking on an enemy drone with only a pistol
  • Androns for always using terrain despite explicitly never taking cover
  • The wall for covering a surprisingly large number of angles
  • Pedro260 for racking up 5 kills in a single mission

To date Ranonauts has:

  • defended the earth for 2 months and 19 days
  • lost 19 soldiers
  • killed 110 aliens in 14 ground battles
  • captured 13 aliens
  • shot down 19 alien spacecraft
  • had one aircraft shot down
  • received $6,350,947 in funding

Ranonauts is in desperate need for new recruits after recent… incidents, if you or a friend would like to become a soldier in the Ranonauts project please leave a comment or fill in your information here, the next set of new soldiers will arrive in episode fifteen.

Indie Shortieland: Pony Island

For something that started as a hobby project with friends, I actually take Indie Wonderland quite seriously. It’s a big part of my weekend and a cornerstone of my weekly planning. So while I understand that, with all the recent hullabaloo about Ninja Blues’ availability (not to mention my current ridiculous workload) you readers might be expecting me to take some shortcuts in the next few weeks…

…you’re actually right. No-one can go at full pelt forever. In fact, these two paragraphs here? This week’s entire review. I hope you had fun reading! See you guys next week.

After the break: no, really, that’s it! There’s nothing else. PAY NO ATTENTION TO THE REVIEW BEHIND THE CORNER.

Ran Story – Linking Scenes

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I think I am perhaps avoiding the central murder mystery a little bit too much now. Instead I’ve been focusing heavily on the background of the woman we are interviewing and hearing the increasingly incredible tale told in the later interviews about Hannah and Eve. I wonder how that will colour my perceptions of the earlier interviews when I start focusing more heavily on the murder itself.

This non-linearity is one of the more novel parts of Her Story. It is really kind of difficult to keep straight exactly what was said at each interview, the searches bring up material from all of them, though obviously some interviews cover specific material much more than others. I focused pretty heavily on some of the more innocuous details, focusing on items that I had seen on the table. It revealed some quick little linking material, but I am not sure any of it is particularly useful.

You can see my notes up on Google Drive. Feel free to give suggestions for searches.

Ranonauts – They Don’t Build For Scout Cars

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I am still really pleased by the performance of the scout cars, they are big, they are relatively tough, the rocket launcher lets me clear away some problematic terrain and they can’t be turned into Reaper Zombies. Unfortunately Xenonauts does include some maps that just aren’t build with the early vehicles in mind. This is especially infuriating when I have a rocket launcher. Surely I can clear those stupid cars and light poles out of the way, I have explosions on my side!

My enemies seem to be able to handle the line of sight limitations a little better than my soldiers. They are very good at running around a corner to deal with a soldier that they could not have seen at the start of their move, and to take advantage of upper story windows much to my chagrin. This was especially bad when somehow two of my soldiers went into battle without their standard Jackal Armour.

The Ranonauts Project would like to offer it’s heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of the following soldier:

  • McNutcase
  • RedNightmare
  • Keab42

Congratulations to:

  • The gunner of Hunter-01 for bursting an alien right out of the gates
  • Narmio for hosing down a newly born Reaper with bullets
  • Keab42 for facing down the alien commander with a stun baton

To date Ranonauts has:

  • defended the earth for 2 months and 16 days
  • lost 19 soldiers
  • killed 91 aliens in 12 ground battles
  • captured 12 aliens
  • shot down 14 alien spacecraft
  • had one aircraft shot down
  • received $6,350,947 in funding

Ranonauts is in desperate need for new recruits after recent… incidents, if you or a friend would like to become a soldier in the Ranonauts project please leave a comment or fill in your information here, the next set of new soldiers will arrive in episode fifteen.