What I've Been Playing This Week (aka Pile of Shame Sunday)

Screenshot from Batman - The Telltale Series
Catwoman makes an appearance in Telltale's Batman

The following post is part of a series of posts that are published every Sunday to update readers on what Mark G has been up to with respect to finishing off games on his "Pile of Shame". The games to target are picked by Choicest Games contributors Choona, Luke and myself. As I'll be talking about my progress through these games, there may be spoilers ahead, especially for games containing a narrative. Consider yourself warned.

Thaumistry: In Charm's Way

  • Picked by Me
  • Percentage Complete = 81%
I'm getting closer to finishing this. I think I need to get past some protesters on Wall Street in order to get a stock certificate. As always, the "recap" command has been invaluable. The game has some puzzles that are pretty crazy along with the spells but the game is hilarious as a result – it reminds me of an era when adventure games and interactive fiction were made just for fun and there was almost a sense of familiarity between you and the game developer, as if both of you were best buddies.

Batman – The Telltale Series

  • Picked by Me
  • Percentage Complete = 77%
Despite the usual issues with Telltale games (such as laggy animations and lip synching issues) and issues with the music cutting off at the incorrect times (i.e. too early or too late), the game works pretty well on Steam Link (when it can recognise my controller) which is good, since it's the main reason I'm playing it. The game introduces you to a lot of familiar faces such as Alfred, Commissioner Gordon (before he comes Commissioner), Catwoman, the Penguin and Harvey Dent – however there are so many twists and turns in this adaptation of Batman that it'll keep you on the edge of your seat.

I also love the frenetic combat and the ability to link evidence at crime scenes (despite it being very easy); you can also plan attacks using a similar system (it somehow reminds me of the movie "Sherlock Holmes" with Robert Downey Jr).

Also, Jared Emerson-Johnson does it again in giving us an awesome soundtrack to listen to. I love the Main Menu music; it sounds like a mix of Danny Elfman's 1989 Batman theme and maybe, Jack Wall? 80s sci-fi? I'm definitely getting a Mass Effect vibe to it too.

The Testament of Sherlock Holmes

  • Picked by Me
  • Percentage Complete = 25%
I haven't made any further progress on this – it's now on hold while I am distracted by Telltale adventures 😊.

Battlefield 1

  • Picked by Me
  • Percentage Complete = 10%
I haven't made any further progress on this – it's now on hold while I am distracted by Telltale adventures 😊


  • Picked by Luke
  • Percentage Complete = 16%
After being so excited to finally get my hands on XCOM 2 it's starting to lose its sheen a bit since the game is starting to become a bit too challenging for me and I'm always feeling crestfallen whenever I notice my lack of progress. Meanwhile, the aliens are doing very well, finding multiple ways to make my life as a Resistance Commander hell. All I'm currently doing is being reactive (i.e. defending sites) instead of being proactive.

I tried an ADVENT Blacksite mission you get near the beginning of the game and only after you arrive at the site and are at the squad setup screen does it assign a difficulty rating for the mission. At first, I thought it was just a generic rating but after failing the mission abysmally, I think it's actually calculated based on your squad's veterancy. However, I couldn't really put any experienced soldiers on the mission since they were all healing up!

Anyway, back to this n00b squad of mine that got totally decimated, even though they were on overwatch ambush, they failed to take out a Viper, two ADVENT soldiers, a mech (goddamn I hate mechs in this game) and an ADVENT ranger. Urgh.

I had more success in the previous mission but I also lost a fairly experienced soldier: a Ukrainian mini-gunner that had a hell of a mo and sunnies. But what do you do when you lose experienced soldiers? Do you use the power of "the Restore button" or do you just roll with it? I tend to generally roll with it but I might be shooting myself in the foot as a result...

Also, is it just me or does the squad setup music sound a bit like the Imperial March from "Star Wars"?

War Thunder

  • Picked by Choona
  • Percentage Complete = 80%
There was a big update this week (well, a 2GB update anyway) which took me 45 minutes to download and install – so I only got to play for about 15 minutes this week (so much time is spent just updating the friggin' game!). Anyway, had a couple of mediocre rounds in Arcade Air Battles mainly because I (a) unlocked a new plane which is actually a bomber and I was trying to use it like a fighter and (b) this Swordfish replaced the Gladiator which I managed to pwn with last time I played. Again, the UI isn't too intuitive and it would help if it were more user friendly.

[ The Pile of Shame ]