2 Reviews liked by aniforprez

I don't know how else I can describe my experience with this game other than to say it fell completely flat.
While there are some component elements to Starsong that were good, the game never managed to weave them into a satisfying (or even cohesive) whole. There’s the history and backstory of Thousand Peaks which, despite lots of worldbuilding surrounding it, rarely ended up being relevant to the main story. There’s the mythology of the cosmos and mystery about the true nature of this world, but once again it was of minimal importance to the actual story despite such a large share of time and dialogue being devoted to it. And there is the ‘gameplay’ itself. While Starsong has resource management and puzzles, both elements are incredibly barebones and simple, making them feel more like padding than a core part of the experience.
Ultimately, Starsong’s focus is on its characters. And while there is an actual resolution to the info it introduces about them, it's honestly pretty dull. Most interpersonal relationships are stagnant throughout the game with the biggest changes only taking place offscreen. Likewise, the characters themselves never actually grow or change throughout the story. Apart from the aforementioned shifts in their interpersonal relations, nothing about their personality, goals, or beliefs ever changes throughout the story. Jun at the beginning of the story is practically the same as the Jun at the end, just a little bit more competent. Eda is the exact same character from beginning to end, the only difference being that she starts to like Jun about halfway through the story. Remi is the exact same, the only difference being she goes from disliking Jun to tolerating him. You learn almost everything important about each character early on, but none of that info is ever developed further.
Characters don't change. Rather, they just start doing different things. They’ll go from scavenging through caves to exploring much larger structures. They go from nobodies to recognizable figures. They’ll take on bigger and bigger tasks that seem as if they’re building to some big revelation. But it never does. The entire experience felt stagnant. I’d call it predictable if not for the fact that the glowing reviews made me think something big was gonna happen that all the earlier mundanity was building towards. But that just made the ending feel even more disappointing when I realized the end result was just as flat as the rest of the game.
I just don’t see what the appeal is here. The things the game does well are never capitalized on, and the areas where it does focus are probably some of its weakest. A large chunk of the time feels like padding thanks to the unnecessary gameplay elements making even the short runtime feel needlessly long.
It seems I’m decidedly in the minority here, but I really don't understand why. Maybe I just never got in sync with the game’s vibes and so everything else was lost on me, but if vibes is the only thing this game has going for it then its sky-high praise still seems excessive.
I don’t get it. I feel like this is just one of those cases where I have to resign myself to the fact that people are just gonna have different tastes and that not all preferences can be explained.

I have been off of the League of Legends drug for almost 6 years now. I want to talk about some memories I have because of this game. Some good, some bad. 2013 - 2017.
I started playing League in early 2013. Panda Annie was the login screen, and Quinn was the next champion in line to be released. I was in 9th grade, the perfect time to start playing this game. I had never played a game like League of Legends before, so my knowledge was totally starting from scratch. I remember when I used Flash for the first time: not only did I not understand how it could be useful because you only flash forward a little bit, but I remember thinking “nah I’m not going to use this much.” Me and one of my best friends would duo against bots to get better at the game and when we were feeling really up to it, we would 1 v 1. He won almost every time. I think I won once when he played Karthus and I played Cho’Gath. I’m pretty sure I played only Cho’Gath for a month following the high of winning that match. I probably have the screenshot I took of that match sitting somewhere on my computer…
Support was my first role that I had a lot of fun with. I had just bought Thresh and some friends wanted to do a 3v3. At this point, I had only played League with the best friend I mentioned earlier and for this match, he was on the enemy team. So, I am with 2 other people that I had barely spoken to at that point. We load into the game and I get a Doran’s Blade and pots and start moving to the bot lane.
“Thresh, where is your Philosopher's Stone?”
“What’s that?”
Thresh has such a cool character design. A lot of characters in League have some pretty incredible designs that make you want to play them despite what everyone else says. Kindred has such a beautiful character design like oh my goodness. League designers were on that PACC the day they made Kindred. Just a really cool concept for a champion overall, despite their interesting moveset that never really fits. Karthus was another champion I gravitated towards early on. The concept of this guy who loved death so much that he “became death” was such a goofy idea to me. I also loved his playstyle of building pure AP with as much stall as possible and suicide bombing into the enemy team. You would Revive and TP back in with homeguard and continue the fight like you never left. That was the best (or at least the most fun) thing to do and I loved it. I love how people would call his Q ‘Skittles’.
League content back then was so interesting. Never before had I been part of a fandom that had such fresh memes to be passed around every day. All of this made playing the game even more fun. It was fun to talk about with friends at school and when we got home, we would hop on TeamSpeak or Skype to play more rounds. And that’s what we would do: play League all day. Go to school Monday - Friday and play League when we get back. Weekends would be for League as well. Getting more friends to play, trying more champions, getting angry at other people, all for good fun if you’re with friends.
We would make ‘funny’ League content videos that are nice to look back on, try stupid shit in a lane and see if it was any good or just joke and goof around all day. It was a really fun time. Even after years of playing League, I still had those fun moments with friends. Nothing was funnier than a goofy play that ended in some sort of W for your team. I remember one time I was playing with friends of a friend (yall been there) and one guy had the WORST internet connection. It took him basically the whole game to finally connect. The message eventually popped up that he finally connected to the game, only for the enemy team to surrender. That moment had me in stitches, I was gone after that. Shit was so funny. Even today a friend of mine still likes to joke about a truly awful play I made one time. A massive teamfight broke out in midlane and I was in top lane just vibin. Everyone on my team dies and my one friend is like
“I didn’t TP so I could have TP priority over the other top laner!”
This was because the other top laner tp’d in and won the fight for the enemy. I didn’t even push that far in lane. Such a terrible play on my part. Another funny memory I have was when 4 out of 5 of us dodged a game after we spawned in just because we were in a funny shitter mood to do something like that. #DodgeForDad. I cannot stress how much fun the game can be with friends. It can be a fantastic social game.
That’s the key word: friends. Eventually, I got addicted enough that I started going solo queue. This is where the game truly shines. You and 9 other mystery people, 4 of them are unfortunately on your team, are supposed to battle it out. It’s such a simple concept too: defeat the enemy base and you win. I don’t need to go into actual player interaction with League because you probably know about it already: it’s toxic beyond belief. I suppose the only major difference from back in 2013 is that there were more Spanish speaking players. Because back then, the Latin America servers did not exist yet. It was interesting getting into a lobby where everyone in the game spoke Spanish except for you. But it wasn’t all bad. I made a few friends when playing solo queue. I still talk to some of them even to this day! Because League is always more fun when you’re playing with friends.
And then you get to ranked queue, and oh man this is where League truly shines again. Now your wins and losses really matter to your overall ranking! Get enough wins and you can go up in rank. Now that was the biggest flex amongst friends; if you could say you were Plat or some shit. And you could even play ranked with a friend! Duoing bot was so much fun. I felt extra safe in bot lane: me and my friend in our own world. All we had to do was win our lane, we could still lose the game of course but we did everything we could. It was easier to communicate and it was still time spent with friends. I mean, shitty attitudes and toxicity only increased in ranked of course.
And you could see the game you were playing, being played at a professional level! LCS BOYS. BREAK OUT THE SILVER SCRAPES. Like, that was so goddamn cool. Finally, a sport that I could get behind. And when a player would play a champ that you main, or make a really amazing play, that was so cool! I remember when XiaoWeiXiao went like… 2-0 in Karthus one week and I felt so goddamn cool. I was playing Karthus before all of these other people that are flooding queues playing Karthus because they watched LCS. It’s always a wacky time when one notorious play happened in LCS and all the queues would be flooded with that champ trying to imitate that play. Or, people realizing “oh hey maybe this champion isn’t too bad!” and wanting to give them a shot. It made for easy pickings since they would almost always suck.
The rush of making a good play and winning your lane is unmatched. Shit is like a drug. It’s a fun little rush of victory and competence that you beat some other player. And the same happens when you lose. Anger and frustration can take over you and make a 30 minute League game feel like 30 years. I’m not entirely sure why, but the bad feelings this game can give you are so bad. It’s sort of hard to describe if you haven’t played League a lot, but completely understandable if you have played it a lot. Working with others when they are terrible makes many players so angry. I have lost friendships through League of Legends. And League has been there when I was at my worst. There were many TeamSpeak/Skype calls of us yelling at each other. But that’s what League will eventually do to you.
I got lucky though. Thankfully, I stopped the downward spiral of anger and frustration. This is one thing I can thank League for. Because of all of that hatred, I sort of hit an apex and stopped getting angry at video games. It’s an odd thing for sure, but I will always give League credit for that. But that didn’t come until like… 2017 when I stopped playing.
Eventually, I started maining Renekton, aka the coolest champ in the game. I found him after his heyday, but he was still dope as fuck in the lane. And he was the prime counter to the champ I hated the most: Riven! Renekton was fantastic! His move pool was excellent, his taunts were really fun, his lore was so fucking cool, everything lined up for me. He was the champ for me. I always had the most fun playing Renekton. He’s just a really cool dude. Lore was simple: he went crazy due to the anger he saw in people’s hearts every day until he couldn’t take it anymore. Shit was KINO. But like many things in League. This changed.
I had never played a game like League that had balance patches before. I had played games where more content was added, but never removed before. Most of the time, it was for the best. “Patch Notes! TLDR! Patch Notes Number 420.69 up in this motherfucker!” Shit was so hype! Like for example, when Riot would step in and nerf a problematic champ into the ground, all I would do is celebrate. Hooray, I can play Karthus midlane again because Kassadin is finally gone! That’s all good stuff! But over time, Riot changed so many aspects of the game. Because of this, I was introduced to the concept of a meta. Meta would annoy me because it meant that I couldn’t play champions I wanted to play. I mean, I could play them, but I would be at a clear disadvantage. Either my matchup alone would be terrible, or my teammates would hate me before the match even began.
Over time, this led me to my current thoughts on why I refuse to play League today: it’s just not the same game it used to be. This is meant on so many different levels, but so many aspects of the game I enjoyed are changed or flat out removed from the game. My favorite champs like Renekton or Karthus now have many weaknesses due to entire champ kits or new items added. Or maybe older items have been completely reworked so you gotta get used to new strategies in order to try and win. New champ kits, new strats, map layouts, the fuckin jungle, ryze for the 80th time, just so many evolving and changing features of the game that strayed me away. I sound like a grouchy old man, but I really enjoyed League for a while until eventually the negatives started to outweigh the positives and I slowly removed myself from it.
I have a lot of great memories with League, but the rage of the player base along with the ever changing content lead me away. ALSO RIOT SUCKIN OFF TENCENT YEAH FUCK TENCENT YALL ALL MY HOMIES HATE THAT COMPANY
In conclusion: do not play this game. Stay as far away from it as you can. Don’t support Riot. They are a terrible company that does not care about you. If they cared about you having fun, we would always have URF. But, as history would tell us, thereisnourflevel.

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