Joined 01/23/2012

Web developer and all-around geek.

497 Posts

Travis gives this a solid "Rad" on the Ghost Scale
This is fun, with very few issues, and is well worth your time.
Travis gives this a "Rad" on the Ghost Scale
This is fun, with very few issues, and is well worth your time.
I said in one episode of Cheerful Ghost Radio, that Fallout 76 is probably the best game I've ever played that I can't easily recommend people buy. I think that still holds true. Fallout 76 is problematic, but depending on what you're looking for there's a lot of fun there as well.

I'm not playing it nearly as much as I used to but I still pop in a few hours a week. I ran out of fresh content a long time ago. In fact that's my biggest complaint as the game stands now. Once you've launched a nuke there's not much left for you to do that you haven't done before. So you wander nuke zones and fight the scorchbeast queen to get better gear and level up to refine your build. That's basically what I'm doing now, in hopes of having some new content to work toward.

There are many aspects of the game that don't work, but many that do, and they work very effectively. If you're into Bethesda games for their environments, world-building, and exploration, Fallout 76 may be the best title yet for that. And when I see people say that Fallout 76 is just a quick cash grab that they clearly didn't care about making well, I can't help but think that those folks don't care about those aspects. The world is just beautifully done, and so much care has been put into the design of this massive world. The Whitespring resort is the centerpiece for this: a very faithful reproduction of the Greenbrier (you'll be coming to Whitespring a lot, because like its inspiration, The Whitespring also houses a government bunker that plays an important role in the game).

Aside from the design, I think the quests work well until they dry up. I said in my first impressions post on this game that the gameplay loop I fell into was getting quests, getting distracted from those quests by all the neat stuff you come across, make frequent trips to camp because you're carrying too much, and eventually completing quests and getting new ones. It was really satisfying. The quests themselves were essentially just vehicles to get you from point A to point B in a lot of ways; the depth previous games' quests is missing entirely from this entry due to the lack of any interactive dialogue. You'll run into robot NPCs and one friendly super mutant but while they can talk to you, you can't talk to them, so there are no narrative choices here and the quests are a bit shallow. Each quest will play out the same way every time (for the most part).

So no, this is not a typical Fallout game. How does it play as a survival game? Well, I don't know. I don't like hardcore survival games. It seems people who do *loved* Fallout 4's survival mode and dislike Fallout 76's survival aspects. I'm the opposite: Survival-lite is fine with me. Essentially what survival means in Fallout 76 is that you have to eat, drink, and watch out for diseases, and other players can come wreck your stuff. You don't lose anything meaningful when you die, just junk items (though if you've been farming for screws and you lose them all, that hurts).

Like I said before, the endgame kinda dries up. Nuke zones were supposed to be the endgame but they're ultimately a little lackluster. It seemed like we were sold on drastic changes to the environment in nuke zones, but the changes are minor. Functionally, the flora that grows in the area changes to nuked flora that you can use to make crafting materials for advanced items, and the enemies are higher level and give more loot, and you get a ton of rads that you have to manage. But aside from that it's just a yellow haze over everything. It's still fun to run in because generally about 3/4 of the 24-player servers show up to participate and wreck a bunch of glowing ghouls. It's mayhem and it's glorious, but even that can get boring if you do it enough.

Before I bought Fallout 76, other players were my biggest concern, but I have yet to meet a jerk in-game. I've read some horror stories, and it seems like as the content dries up, some high-level players get a kick out of destroying camps. The anti-griefing measures aren't up to snuff, really. Thankfully it's nearly impossible to grief with nukes (you get a 3 minute warning when a nuke is launched) and it would be a stupid waste of a nuke anyway. But the other big anti-griefing measure is bounties. If you attack a player enough without them attacking back, or if you break items at another player's camp, you get a bounty. However, all you need is a teammate to kill you. You lose your bounty, they collect some caps, and can give them right back to you. There's a minor cap loss because it isn't 1:1 for caps lost:caps gained, but caps are fairly easy to come by, so essentially there's no penalty for being a dick. There's currently no way to fully turn off PvP. A new unrestricted PvP server option is coming "soon" so hopefully they'll go there instead, but if they enjoy messing with other players it may be more fun for them to stay on the normal servers because they aren't changing how PvP works in normal servers. At least, if they are planning to, they haven't said so.

As it stands now, the game is less buggy than it ever has been but there are still some doozies. Scorchbeasts are supposed to be the big, bad, fun enemy to take down (like dragons in Skyrim) but it seems like their sonic energy wave (or whatever it is) is bugged more often than not, so whenever one sees you, your screen is just filled with blue and nothing else until you blindly run away. When they work properly, they still aren't great fun but they're manageable.

In addition, item duplication is rampant, and the most recent methods used involve doing something that tanks the server stability. Every time one is patched out, it seems like a new method is discovered. They're starting to do ban waves, but to add to the troubles this game is facing, it seems like some legit players are getting caught in that (but it's worth noting that plenty of dupers would claim to be legit, so take that with a grain of salt).

But even after the issues, I'm still going back in for more because the good stuff outweighs the bad for me. It may not do the same for you. It's hard to rate this game. I want to give it a Must Play for the fun I'm having, and Skip It because of the issues, so I think I'm going to average it out to a low Rad, but don't take that as an endorsement.
Wine 4.0 was released today, bringing a ton of enhancements and bug fixes to make playing games on Linux even better. Most notably:

  • Vulkan support.

  • Direct3D 12 support.

  • Game controllers support.

Some of this was already possible using extra utilities to get vulkan going. DXVK would translate DirectX calls to Vulkan. But now it's native to Wine itself.

This is after months of progress in other areas of Linux gaming. Tools like Lutris have matured quite a bit, to help you get the precise Wine setup you need to run specific games, and Steam's Proton (a distribution of Wine) is getting better and better, with more successes than failures in getting Windows games running on Linux from the reports I've seen.

Wine 4.0, once it has gone through some rounds of testing, will most likely show up in Proton soon and make the process even smoother.

It seems like every week there's new major news about advancements in translating Windows native games to run better and better in Linux. I've been planning to jump in and test things out myself "once it calms down a bit" but it doesn't seem like that's going to happen as the technology is rapidly changing.

You heard it here first, folks: 2019 IS THE YEAR OF THE LINUX DESKTOP!

Check out the full patch notes for 4.0 here:

In this episode, we review the best Mega Man game on the NES Classic, Mega Man 2! In Mega Man 2, the Blue Bomber learned most of the tricks that would carry him through TONS more games spanning multiple series.

In the next few NES Classic reviews, we're playing the Super Mario games and we want you to play it too, and let us know what you think. We'll share your thoughts in the episode. Come on it's time to go do the Mario!
Your votes have been cast, and now it's time to reveal the winners!

Best AAA Game: TIE between Red Dead Redemption 2 and Spider-Man
2018 saw many great games, and many of our nominees were worthy of this award, but these two inched out past the competition.

Red Dead Redemption 2 is a masterpiece, an experience that anyone who's into cinematic, character driven games should not miss. The follow-up to the original Red Dead Redemption (2010) improves upon its predecessor in basically every way imaginable.

Spider-Man is an open-world game with a much tighter focus than RDR2, but adds another dimension (literally). Insomniac took the superhero game formula that Rocksteady used for the Arkham series and refined it to match our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.

Runners up: a three-way tie (!!) among Fallout 76, God of War, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Best Indie Game: Celeste
This indie title took the world by storm with its difficult platforming that takes you on a journey up Celeste Mountain. Celeste got its start as a browser game (which you can play here: and got way more than a fresh coat of paint for its big release.

Runners Up: a five-way tie (!!!!!) among Dead Cells, Graveyard Keeper, Into the Breach, Jurassic World Evolution, and Subnautica.

Best Ongoing Game: Terraria
What can be said about Terraria that we haven't already said. If you've been on this site for long you know how much we love this game. It *is* still in ongoing development, and even though it didn't get an update in 2018, the news and spoilers about the next patch kept us captivated.

Runner Up: No Man's Sky

Best DLC/Update: No Man's Sky: NEXT
Hello Games had a bit of a rough launch with No Man's Sky, but they didn't retreat from it, they doubled down and fixed things. 2018's release of the NEXT update added a slew of new features and depth, and added the much sought after multiplayer.

Runners Up: Jurassic World Evolution: The Secrets of Dr. Wu, and Stardew Valley's Multiplayer update.

Best Mobile Game: Egg Inc.
There weren't many votes in this category, but Egg Inc. received them all. This heavily addictive incremental idler by Auxbrain has quite a following, and with good reason. It was released a few years back but Auxbrain keeps things interesting with contracts (added on Easter of 2018, fittingly) and occasionally update the game with new farm upgrades to buy into and new eggs to research. It nails the gameplay loop to keep you feeling rewarded while not giving everything to you too soon, and it's just bizarre enough to be interesting. I'm literally stopping this post every now and then when I see a drone fly by out of the corner of my eye and when I'm done with it I'm going to prestige and work my way back up over a few minutes. I've been at this for months folks.

So what do you think about the winners? Did your favorite games make the cut?
2018 is over, so you know what that means: it's time to pick our favorite 2018 games! Your nominations are in (along with some other games that were huge in 2018) and now it's time to vote!

You'll have through January 14 to cast your votes, and we will announce the winners on January 15.

Best AAA Game

  • Assassin's Creed Odyssey

  • Fallout 76

  • God of War

  • Red Dead Redemption 2

  • Spider-Man

  • Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Vote here:

Best Indie Game

  • Celeste

  • Dead Cells

  • Graveyard Keeper

  • Into the Breach

  • Jurassic World Evolution

  • Revenge of the Bird King

  • Subnautica

Vote here:

Best Ongoing Game

  • Fortnite

  • Minecraft

  • No Man's Sky

  • Overwatch

  • Terraria

  • Stardew Valley

Vote here:

Best DLC/Update

  • Ark Survival Evolved: Extinction

  • Jurassic World Evolution: The Secrets of Dr. Wu

  • No Man's Sky: NEXT

  • Spider-Man: The City That Never Sleeps

  • Stardew Valley Multiplayer Update

Vote here:

Best Mobile Game (includes Ongoing games)
Since we only had two nominations in this category and one wasn't released this year, I called a last minute audible to expand this to include new and ongoing games for the mobile category.

  • Alto's Odyssey

  • Egg Inc.

  • Hearthstone

  • Fortnite Mobile

  • PUBG Mobile

Vote here:

Go forth and pick your favorites, then check back on January 8 to see how your picks fared!

In this Cheerful Ghostradamus episode we’re going to tap into our future telling abilities and make predictions about everything coming in 2019 in gaming! In addition to your hosts' humble predictions, we share some predictions from Will Ball and Greg Woodruff, two awesome users on Cheerful Ghost, as well as the folks from BrothersForgeGaming and Game Dev's Quest.

Bonus, if you start listening to this episode at 11:17:32 PM, the end credits theme will kick in right at midnight. Ring in the New Year with Cheerful Ghost Radio!


Game Dev’s Quest:

Auld Lang Syne:

Pour yourself some eggnog, cozy up by the fire, and join us for the Cheerful Ghost Radio 2018 Holiday Special! We talk about some recent news that Blizzard is scaling back Heroes of the Storm, chat about what we've been playing over the past month, and discuss some of our favorite games to play and films to watch around the holidays.

Links and notes about topics we discuss this episode:

Unforeseen Consequences: A Half-Life Documentary:

The Future of Diablo:

Heroes of the Storm:

Macaulay Culkin shows up in a bunch of awesome YouTube :

Music credits:

Blizzard 12 Days of Christmas:

Life Day Song:

Still Alive Christmas Remix:

Boston Pops Sleigh Ride:

Marvel dropped trailers for Captain Marvel and Avengers Endgame in the same week, and our heads exploded in anticipation. RIP Jon, Tim, and Travis. But we were prepared for this: our hosts have been replaced by Life Model Decoys.

Captain Marvel Trailer:
​​Infinity War Endgame Trailer:
It’s that time again, folks! We are gearing up for our Game of the Year awards, and we need your nominations!

Please listen closely, as our menu options have changed. We have changed up the categories a bit this year, so please read those carefully.

Then drop your nominations in the comments below, and we will compile them into polls for final voting.

  • Best AAA Game: This category is for the Call of Duties and the Fallouts, the big games with big publisher backing.

  • Best Indie Game: The games that go their own way, sometimes self-published.

  • Best DLC/Expansion/Update: Any addition to a game that had a very positive effect, from something as simple as an update or horse armor, to big expansions.

  • Best Ongoing Game: This category is for the games that didn’t release in 2018 but continue to receive content. MMOs, games like Minecraft and No Man’s Sky, etc.

  • Best Mobile Game: Self-explanatory. These are the games you play on your phone.

The nominations will close December 31st, and we will open up the polls for voting on the 1st.

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