Yesterday was one of those days. I started trying to leave work around 4:30 but as I was literally locking my machine… I had a person come into my office that needed to talk through a problem with me. Then at 4:50 when that person left… I was not fast enough and another slid in with similar things that needed to be talked through. Finally around 5:20 I was walking out the door, and got snagged by someone I passed in the hall to help deal with another problem. This all meant that I did not actually get out the door until roughly 6… which meant by the time I ran the errands I needed to and picked up meds for one of our animals from the vet I did not get home until after 7. By the time I dealt with watering flowers, feeding cats, changing the ferret playpen and then dealing with the dinner I had picked up on the way home… it was at a minimum 7:30 before I actually sat down in front of a machine and began the process of attempting to download Dauntless.
I had every hope in the world of finally being able to try this game out, because while yes I played it briefly during Pax South… I knew nothing about how to play a Monster Hunter game at that point. It was my hope that given my indoctrination into the genre with Monster Hunter World, that the experience of playing Dauntless would be more enjoyable. The above screenshot represents the furthest I have made it into the game yet, and I don’t even know if there is additional patching that needs to happen once you actually successfully log in. When I finally made it in last night the game itself was in maintenance mode because I am guessing they did not have a very good launch day. Phoenix Labs can call yesterday the beginning of Open Beta, but if you have already publicly stated that there will be no wipes from this point onwards… then you have effectively launched your game.
Launches are extremely rough and it seems like everything was on fire last night for them as their status page denoted problems with almost every subsystem. This unfortunately does not give a whole lot of confidence given that one of the few takeaways I have heard over and over is that the game in general had “performance problems” in closed testing. Based on last night I am guessing it still technically has a lot of performance issues or more importantly scaling issues for the sort of sucker punch that is opening the floodgates to the unwashed masses like myself. The game seems interesting but I am not sure if it is going to get more than a passing curiousity from me since I already have Monster Hunter World, and could be devoting that time towards Generations for the upcoming Switch release of Generations Ultimate.
What I ended up playing instead is Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon which I got for free as a kickstarter backer of Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night. This game is essentially a prequel to Ritual of the Night as far as I can tell and lays some of the background for the setting. It also serves to be an amazing re-imagining of Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse in that it allows you to swap between a cast of characters as you make your way through the game and find them. Right now it should be available on a wide variety of platforms in their E-Shop for roughly $10. I personally got my free copy on Steam and then turned around and immediately purchased it on the Switch as well. It is also available however on 3DS, PS4 and Xbox One so for the most part you can get it on any platform. The game very much has an authentic Nintendo 8-Bit era feel to it… right up until you reach the boss fights. The sprites that are moving around are way to large for the memory buffers of that era, but I am more than willing to suspend my disbelief and just go with it. I wish I had taken a better screenshot but this is of me playing the Zangetsu character just a little ways into act two. Well worth checking out if you were a fan of Castlevania at all.