53 Reviews liked by XON

i love how ambitious this game was for its time but jesus christ walking through a dungeon in this game is like driving through new york city but everyones a suicidal jaywalker

yes honey, i'm aiming for the eyes

every single complaint old CRPG grognards level at the Bethesda games can be found right here

just a casual update on this. prior to the game's newly implemented master rate update - which introduced ELO as a separate, zero-sum figure which factored into matchmaking and more clearly delineated skill in players - a charitable interpretation of the game's ranking system would be as an extension of the game's thesis, the idea that the journey for strength is never-ending. and there was certainly an appeal to that: now that you've reached master rank, you'll have to duke it out with every other person who put in the time and managed to make it to the top.
on a mechanical level, though, this felt tangential at best, and over time would likely only result in an increasingly lopsided system where most players had managed to get into master rank just by playing the game over a long enough stretch of time. having master rate now lends each and every battle this genuine tension & palpable weight. after all, nobody wants to be at the bottom of that leaderboard. nakayama's team designed sf6 with the notion that the versus mode is philosophically endgame content, a mode that, for absolute newcomers, should best be reserved until after the completion of world tour and some additional reps in practice. with this in mind, master rate goes beyond just 'endgame' content - it feels like a high level expansion where you're invited to prove your salt.
for my part, i've enjoyed two brief stints in the top 25 north american dhalsims, although as it turns out the mantle is hard to keep (as of writing: #45). is it impressive? i dunno, i feel like i have a lot more to learn and my character is underplayed by a margin of almost 200,000 players (as of august 14, there were around 221824 ken users. this is to be contrasted against a paltry 29183 dhalsim users). im not actually really a competitor in the FGC, but id like to keep growing stronger and keep fighting strong opponents. so i dunno, we'll see where this goes.
it's a significant motivator, then, that this is probably my favourite street fighter at this point, as well as probably my favourite fighting game. not to say that this is without fault - i appreciate world tour's inclusion immensely but it's half-cooked, the in-game economy leaves something to be desired, battle passes suck and the devs need to do more to encourage casual retention (further costumes is one thing but what about alternative winscreens, a functional music player, further customization of titles and versus screens, etc), matchmaking needs to be further expanded to utilize the game's strong netcode (why am i somewhat region locked), and no, you're not imagining things, the game's input register really is kind of wacky.
but i think a lot of other complaints at the moment stem from the amplification of certain voices on social media - as well as the fact that these people are also vying for a million dollars in the capcom pro tour and need things to resolve in their favour. so if we can learn to accept third strike as one of the apexes of this genre, a game constructed around problems with no clear, safe answers, a game where half of the normals kind of feel like shit, a game where chun li and yun and ken and all manners of bullshit are allowed to run rampant and free, then we can accept sf6 as a similar work in progress too. an evolving slate, one in which we have to learn - with time - to deal with strong characters and strong universal systems and strong offensive options.
this game really hits this absolute sweet spot of accessibility and depth of systems without presenting straightforward or clear solutions in a way that gets my brow furrowed in concentration and my brain eager to keep playing. i come from a samurai shodown background so everything to do with this central notion of not going on autopilot and guarding against the tendencies of players, in a sense moreso than worrying about the characters they inhabit, strikes a resonant chord with me. im really excited to see where it goes, and of course it goes without saying EVO top 8 this year belongs in the pantheon of fighting game tournaments. just a total gem. thank you capcom for giving me aki on my birthday
addendum: KB0 third strike review, november 2020:
"rather than establishing new legends, this game is about characters unsure about what the future entails, about what their next move should be, about what it even means to continue fighting - they waver, they fail, they practice, they move on. "
what a joy, then, that this is the overarching idea that propels world tour! street fighter has never really had traditionally good narratives, but when it chooses to it has pretty good vignettes and pretty good character writing, both of which world tour thankfully has in spades. very smart to organize a narrative around each character kind of just doing their own thing instead of trying to wrap them all into a sweeping narrative ala SFV.

Time for everyone to apologize to FFXII

Peakmin. Somehow manages to beautifully combine every awesome element from EVERY Pikmin game into one lovely package, and has a lot to offer for completionists, even after the secret ending. This is one of the best games of the year, and it's most likely going to remain my favourite game in the series. What a triumph, dude.

suffers from some common modern nintendo issues (over-abundance of text that treats you like a dumb baby, bland theming) but gameplay-wise this is easily my fav pikmin game yet. caves have really been perfected here, and even though the game is overall a little too easy (and oatchi is definitely too strong), there's still some content that had me really struggling here. maybe best final boss pikmin has had, too

Playing against Marisa ruined my perception of stuff actually hitting irl.
Earlier today I tried to smack a mosquito and it flew between my fingers and my first thought which used to be "Damn, he flew away" became "Nahhhhh wtf dude, I saw it connect, these hitboxes make no sense".

Steam Reviews are the only place on earth where a guy with a Dodonpachi pfp will play a game called NON-BINARY and then say "I can't believe they put politics in a shmup".

Pikmid fans only hate it because it’s actually good