What We Played #359 – Vampyr, Mario Tennis Aces & Agony

I always find the week that follows a bank holiday feels rather strange. It’s neither here nor there, not quite long enough for me to get up to speed, but also with the joy of knowing that the weekend is just that little bit closer.

That doesn’t mean I haven’t been busy though, and I’ve played a few things prior to E3 that I can’t tell you about yet. I can tell you that I’ve just booted up Mario Tennis Aces for its weekend of online tennis gaming, will probably dip into The Crew 2’s beta as well, and have Onrush in for review alongside a few of the others here.

Aran was the first to hop in and say hello this week, and he’s been playing Dontnod’s long in development Vampyr ahead of his review next week. There’s also been a dalliance with Jurassic World Alive which he describes as being “essentially a better version of Pokémon Go because it has dinosaurs and battles.”

It was pure pain and Agony for Steve, as he had to review the very disappointing Agony. Then he decided that he’s have some jewel hunting in Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy as a chaser. He’s been beavering away at – deep breath now – The Piano, Cultist Simulator, Monster Slayers and Runner 3 for review, but since it was half term, he’s also helped the family when they got stuck in Layton games on 3DS and dug out Nintendoland and Kirby on the Wii U.

Also playing Crash was Tuffcub, “which has reminded me just how annoying old games were so I only played it for about twenty minutes before turning it off.” He also dipped into H1Z1 for a few short bursts, and thinks it works alright for the odd 10 minute game. I kind of agree, finding it somewhere between PUBG and Fortnite, and not really standing up too well to either.

Jason’s been getting stuck into Dark Souls Remastered, Saints Row 4 – “still the best superhero game every,” he says – PixelJunk Monsters 2, Shape of the World, Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection, and decided that Pokémon Go would help motivate him to go to the gym.

Making him cry at how bad he is at video games, Ade’s been playing Shio for review – the game’s good, just it’s been kicking his arse. He’s consoled himself by polishing off The Frozen Wilds expansion from Horizon Zero Dawn. Meanwhile, Gamoc been sinking his teeth further into Mass Effect Andromeda and Mafia 3, both of which are still sadly quite buggy.

Bouncing from one festival to another, Jim’s spent plenty of time on his PS Vita bouncing from one game to another thanks to having a huge 64GB memory stick. The ones that stuck with him were Crypt of the Necrodancer and Undertale, while he delved into Overwatch and played with Brigitte once he got back to his PS4.

Miguel’s been all about the anime this week, but did still play Owlboy on Switch and get through some fighting games like MVC Infinite, Pillow Fight and Cruz Brothers with his pal.

Finally, Dom just name dropped a bunch of games he’s played:

I have played Yoku’s Island Express, Smoke & Sacrifice, Just Beats & Shapes, Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection, South Park: The Fractured but Hole, Forza 7, Dirt 4, Sonic Racing Transformed, Antigraviator, and Lego Jurassic World, where we are now onto hour 268. Sigh.

Sounds like it’s a hard life having a son who’s obsessed with dinosaurs, it seems.

With the weekend now upon us, what have you played over the last seven days?

Written by
TSA's Reviews Editor - a hoarder of headsets who regularly argues that the Sega Saturn was the best console ever released.


  1. After completing Rise of the Tomb Raider last week, managed to finally get reinvested in Witcher 3 and see the story through to the end! I thought I was a lot closer to the ending than I actually was, but after 10 hours and a few more side quests (hard not to get distracted!) Finally I got to the end and wow, what an amazing experience! After that, decided to jump into some Indies and started iconoclasts (amazing game) and strider (also very good), as well as Yokus Island Express (so endearing!)

    Now I’ve picked up Ni No Kuni 2 on the latest sale and I’m hooked! Loving the change to the combat style and it’s so full of charm, can’t wait to get really stuck in this weekend!

    (Rant over, just proud I got some serious game time in finally!)

    • Wait until you realise how many sidequests Ni No Kuni 2 has. 40+ hours in and I still need to do about 35 of the 150 required for a trophy.

      Also, don’t spend any money if you want all the trophies in a sensible time. The trophy for having 500,000 guilders could be annoying if you spend it all. You might need to buy a few things, but unless absolutely necessary for a quest, don’t. Then save, sell stuff and reload after the main story. Or possibly a few hours later. Or realise the terrible mistake and shout “Knickers!”. ;)

  2. After a weekend away again, with no games and a couple of trips to the cinema (Solo was fun, if unnecessary, and Deadpool 2 was disappointing)…

    I may have been playing some JRPG thing and got a platinum trophy. Because there’s not enough of those in my list.

    And made a good dent in the final bits of Ni No Kuni 2 (I think that’ll be a couple of hours here and there for months until I get the platinum)

    Then Monster Hunter: World again. That’s now a “quick couple of hunts, oh bollocks, is it 4 hours later now??” game. And probably will be for a while. It does make my PS4 very noisy though.

    And some of The Crew 2 beta. I’m not sure how much will change by the time it’s released, but if it ends up being like the beta, it’s a bit poor. Some terrible, annoying voice “acting”. Cars handle worse than they did in the first game. The instant switching between different types of vehicles is a bit pointless (I’m in a plane! Now I’m in a car. Which just crashed into the ground. What did I expect to happen???). And I’m sure it looks worse than the original. If it had been DLC for the first game adding planes and boats, that might have been worth it.

    • Oh, and I just got the “hell on earth” trophy (and the platinum) for Killing Floor 2. Finally. Took just 360 days ;)

  3. Finished Far Cry 5 this week but I almost didn’t. It’s not a bad game, it’s just ‘there’. I don’t know… I feel like it was well designed and I didn’t have any glitches at all really, but it didn’t grip me. The gameplay was fine but the story fell a bit flat and I lost interest pretty early on. I had to force myself to make it to the final confrontation with the Father, but even then, I chose the ‘bad’ ending just because it was the shorter of the two options available. I definitely prefer the Far Cry Spinoffs (Primal/Blood dragon). At least they’re fun.

    Also completed AER: Memories of Old. Nice short game with an interesting art style. The art style reminded me of RiME and Journey but AER isn’t anywhere near as polished as either of those games. Still, it was fun soaring through the clouds in ‘bird form’ and exploring the temples was atmospheric.

    Finally, played a good chunk of Detroit and I’m really enjoying it. I wasn’t sure at first but the story really grips you as you progress. I’m totally invested in all of the main characters now and I’m actually nervous about where their paths will lead. The humans in this game are awful. It reminds me of the more recent Planet of the Apes movies. Definitely #teamAndroid but I was #teamApe too. Really good so far!

  4. My favourite game this week has to be Yoku’s Island Express. It’s so charming! It has great gameplay too, mixing the best aspects of platformers with a heavy dose of pinball with some metroidvania sprinkled on top.
    I picked up Spintires Mudrunner this week after checking out some gameplay and I think I’ve found my new game to play while catching up with podcasts. It’s not for everyone but if you like physics heavy games or the sim games like Euro Truck I think you’ll have a lot of relaxing fun with this one.
    I also completed a couple more games from the backlog, Wolfenstein The New Order and Rise of the Tomb Raider.
    Wolfenstein is a great shooter with a surprisingly well told and deep story given it’s about killing Nazi’s in mechs with their robot dogs.
    Rise was ok, not as good as the 2013 Tomb Raider reboot but a fine sequel.

  5. Haven’t played anything much apart from Fifa 18 World Cup mode and I am loving the new free update. Got to the final and lost but was a grear match and I am also loving the packs are I keep getting higher chances and you cannot buy/sell which is way better… thankfully I have a reason to spend fifa coins on World Cup packs instead saving up for a player!
    Currently playing H1Z1 and I am loving it…. got to first place and it felt great!
    Teaming up with B_Cambo on this tonight.
    As for this weekend we are going to start packing for our Download Festival whoohoo!!!

  6. Not much gaming for me this week as i was away for a few days but i picked up Detroit Become Human yesterday and i played a few hours last night, just completed Connor’s second segment. Like with all QD games, i’m savouring my time with it, exploring every nook and cranny insofar as i can and appreciating what QD have achieved with the visual details. Each segment so far has triggered some thinking or made me question something in a way that games don’t regularly do. And playing the piano put a smile on my face, being able to vary the tempo provided a pretty good sense of performing, or interpreting the piece of music for myself.

  7. I was very indecisive and mainly (re)played old games this week… Played a bit of Final Fantasy XII (already finished it on PS2), Killzone Shadow Fall (Got it on release but so far never got past mission 2), Titanfall 2 (stopped midway through the campaign the first time), Outcast: Second Contact (finished the original on pc back in the day) and Kingdom Hearts: Final Mix (played the original on PS2, and the remaster on PS3, never got into it, now trying again on ps4…). The only game i could somewhat dedicate myself to was Stories: The Path of Destinies. Got the true ending and am now in the process of getting all 24 or so endings for the Platinum.

  8. I’m rattling through the heists on GTA Online, the Doomsday ones are good fun now that there’s easier checkpoints and the setup missions give you infinite lives. My backlog is sitting gathering dust, I really should crack on with Shadows of the Colossus or Gravity Rush 2, but I just keep coming back to GTA.

  9. Nothing major this week. Checked out FIFA’s World Cup update which is a nice addition. Pokémon Quest, despite being a mobile game, is far more fun than it should be and Mario Tennis is excellent.

  10. There wasn’t much playtime for me this week. But just when I started to get frustrated not to make any progress in Bloodborne, being stuck with these three shadow guys and the one one the castle roof, and thought about playing something else, I managed to summon another player last night. He helped me kill off that gang. So, I’m into Byrgenwerth now and excited all over again, what an excellent game..! :o)

    • Well done – the Shadows are a nuisance, especially when you have to run all the way back for a rematch. You’re almost level with my progress now – after Byrgenwrth and it’s boss the following area – Yahar’gul – will make the preceding areas seem vanilla in comparison! :)

      • Yeah, the game doesn’t really give you too many save points… Thankfully, you can speedrun through most levels quite well, which I found out a little late. E.g., I got annoyed by those horrible tick-like monsters outside Castle Cainhurst after the first fight, so I just ran through the area, and never had to deal with them again.
        I’m aware I might not make it to finish the game, but I find it quite refreshing in a way, as other games usually just make you replay a story without much of a challenge.

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