Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Shadowrun Returns - 20/20 hours

My last two hours were spent with the "Shadowrun Unlimited" module, but I barely scratched the surface of what it had to offer. It was an attempt to create a more "open world" feel in the Shadowrun Returns engine. I liked that it borrowed a lot from the old Sega Genesis Shadowrun game, which had always been one of my favorites. However, along with the names of various people and places, "Shadowrun Unlimited" also borrowed one of the earlier game's greatest weaknesses - it gets off to an incredibly slow start, as you have to grind a bunch of randomly generated missions just to get enough karma to survive the main plot.

These missions are incredibly dull at the low end, consisting of "go to a place, and then go to a second place, and maybe you'll be attacked en route," but I didn't really mind. The only real flaw is that Shadowrun Returns has some inexplicably long loading screens, which wasn't such a problem in the base game, but could get kind of annoying when you had to transition between three or four areas in the space of a minute.

Overall, I'd say that the user-generated content of Shadowrun Returns was a nice bonus, and if I ever play this game again, it will probably be "Shadowrun Unlimited" which brings me back, however, it was not really essential. Shadowrun Returns was a nice little game, and in some ways it was less frustrating than certain other tabletop-based crpgs like Baldur's Gate, but for all that it lacks the drawbacks of a more faithful adaptation, it also lacks that indescribable spark of brilliance that makes you come back to a game again and again.

Maybe Dragonfall: Director's Cut will change my mind.

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