Author Topic: 52 Games Challenge 2021  (Read 31475 times)

tripredacus

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #75 on: February 15, 2021, 10:46:48 am »
Eye of the Beholder
Printed maps are neat and were used sparingly. There is a mapping program for the first two games in this series called ASE or All Seeing Eye. It is specifically designed for the game to be run in DOSBox, and it puts an automapper to the right of the game. This means you have to play windowed. It helps a lot for not getting lost in the levels. Especially since there are blind teleports and other spots that change your direction. I ended up using the character editor to give some additional HP to my 4 main party members but that alone wasn't enough. I ended up starting over completely and having a cleric on the team because that class is the only one that can do important things such as: heal, remove paralyze, cure poison and resurrect dead. I ended up not having to use any resurrections. Used the character editor in ACE to give the cleric the Cure Lights Wounds, cure paralyze/poison. The game is fairly straight forward and not overly complicated once I figured out what I was doing. The only tough areas are the ones with spiders or mantis enemies, which poison you on hit. You need a Cleric to remove the poison before resting or else your characters will die during the resting.

The next big hurdle was the Mind Flayers. They are in the second to last level and are very strong. They also have a high chance to paralyze your characters using AOE. The best maybe 1, but the worst maybe 5. It took me a while to determine how to handle them. You cannot just run up to them and hack away like the other monsters because your front line fighters will get paralyzed. So you have to run up, attack first, use a spell and retreat/heal and go back. After I got this down they weren't so tough. Now to the end. I made it all the way to the Beholder and that enemy is just the worst. What the Mind Flayer does to you with paralyze, the Beholder does with damage. He can 1 hit kill your entire party. If your cleric is the one that gets killed, you have to reload a save. The tactic used on the Mind Flayer doesn't work and it appears that you cannot actually "kill" the Beholder. I had to watch some LPs to see what you are supposed to do. Use a wand that I didn't have to push the Beholder into a corner of a room. There is no way I would have figured that out. Not only this, but the game pauses any time a spell is cast, either yours or the enemy, and the room you have to do this in has fire traps and no easy way to move you or kite the Beholder into the correct position to pull this off. Game was abandoned.

Eye of the Beholder II
This one plays pretty much the same as the first game (including the pauses when spells are used) with the exception that some areas have respawning enemies. My first attempt at this game was using a new party and I'm fairly certain that this is not how the game is intended to be played. The enemies are way too strong, especially the monks in the temple, to be able to progress with new characters and base items. On a restart I imported my party from EOBI and they fared much better. Like the first game, you have to find keys to get into areas, but the map design was as such that you didn't need to use keys in a certain order. If you went into one door off the main trail, you would eventually find another key to go into the door you need to go through to complete the level. Not so in this game. It came down to using a key on the wrong door and then not being able to progress. I searched through every place I could and then viewed the full map to see if I missed anything, and I did not. I didn't feel like having to replay the entire game up until that point, so I decided to abandon this as well.

Dungeon Hack
This game plays similarly to the two EOB games I played, with the exception that there is no ASE for it (although I didn't look), the graphics are larger or more chunkier, and you consume food when resting. Perhaps EOB1/2 did that also but it wasn't apparent because the food bar is on screen at all times here. This is a dungeon generator that you can create random dungeons to explore. I played it for awhile, but since it was not really a game with an end, I didn't feel like bothering. I marked this as abandoned on my game list post just because I didn't finish the one dungeon I created.

I ended up skipping on EOB3, as well as the older style games that were more like Pool of Radiance. I am also going to be skipping on the Baldur's Gate demo since I do not have a computer ready to play that.

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #76 on: February 17, 2021, 10:45:29 pm »
10 - Powered Gear (Arcade 1994) - BEAT - Picked up that new Capcom Arcade compilation, you get a nice mixture of shooters and action games, and a few fighting games.  The collection is done nice, there's a lot of features, I can save games, there's a rewind button, I can speed up some of the games that might feel slow, there's roughly 30 games for 40 bucks, and though I probably won't play them all, I'm gonna try to give them. 

Never heard of Powered Gear, it apparently has a different name in North America, but they only had the JP version on here (Some games have both English and Japanese roms).  This is a kinda cool beat em up, where you are in a mech suit, fighting other mechs, with the gimmick being that you can pick up the different arms of enemies as weapons, and change your limited use shoulder mounted gun with either a flamethrow or missile launcher, etc...Overall it has pretty good movement to it, the sprites are pretty big, so they look great, though it's kinda hectic at times.  It's one of those arcade brawlers, where you are just gonna get hit a lot and so you just bang your head against it till you get to the end.  Thankfully quarters are infinite in this lol

necrosexual

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #77 on: February 18, 2021, 06:25:42 pm »
about 2020 i did okay tbh. considering animal crossing: new horizons dropped in 2020. and considering my playtime for it is >500 hours. because that shouldn't be a problem this year i should get much closer to 52 games, unless you take into consideration my slow pace as is.
otoh i have no idea how to score puzzle games, as i played a lot of endless puzzles last year... lot of tetris, tetris attack... things i didn't include because it just seemed lame to do so. i play a lot of puzzle games like this (currently obsessed with flipull) so it holds shit back.


wanting to play/beat more zelda and final fantasy this year. less pokemon. the former might happen but the latter never will

<-- i use this as a mark of completion or an obtained platinum trophy

~~~~~11.01.21~~~~~ pokemon gold (GBC)
~~~~~01.02.21~~~~~ final fantasy IV (PSP)
~~~~~05.02.21~~~~~ hyrule warriors: age of calamity (NSw)
~~~~~19.02.21~~~~~ legend of zelda (NES)
~~~~~22.02.21~~~~~ pokemon silver (GBC)
~~~~~28.02.21~~~~~ pokemon blue (GB)
~~~~~03.03.21~~~~~ legend of zelda: a link to the past (SNES)
~~~~~06.03.21~~~~~ mario kart 64 (Wii U VC/N64)
~~~~~13.03.21~~~~~ legend of zelda ocarina of time (Wii U VC/N64)
~~~~~01.04.21~~~~~ legend of zelda: windwaker HD (wii u)
~~~~~06.05.21~~~~~ hades (NSw)
~~~~~20.05.21~~~~~ pokemon sword (NSw)
~~~~~20.05.21~~~~~ 靈幻道士 SUPER MAGICIAN (SMD/GEN) english title 'elf wor' or literal translation 'excellent magical daoist priest'
~~~~~11.06.21~~~~~ mcdonald's treasure land adventure (SMD/GEN)
~~~~~11.06.21~~~~~ dragon crystal (SMS)
~~~~~17.06.21~~~~~ シルヴァ・サーガ2/silva saga ii: the legend of light and darkness (SNES)
~~~~~18.06.21~~~~~ sanrio world smash ball! (SNES) [keroppi]
~~~~~26.06.21~~~~~ dodonpachi (PS1)
~~~~~01.07.21~~~~~~ wiz'n'liz (SMD/GEN)
~~~~~09.07.21~~~~~~ earthbound (SNES) happy birthday to me! what a great game to beat on my birthday


drops:
zelda ii: adventure of link (NES) [balls hard and everything i read says it only gets harder. got through palace 3 and realised i was only considering continuing to say i beat zelda ii. i saw enough, and it just wasn't for me.]

background games:
yoshi's wooly world (Wii U) / zelda: twilight princess (Wii U)
« Last Edit: July 09, 2021, 04:08:35 am by necrosexual »


if i'm an NPC, i want to be the secret boss in a low tier niche JRPG.

dhaabi

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #78 on: February 21, 2021, 04:48:44 pm »
08. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening || Nintendo Switch || 02.21.21

As someone who has played several of The Legend of Zelda titles, I find myself looking up answers to puzzles more often than I'd like to admit, although I can usually get through a majority of the game on my own. Having never played the original Link's Awakening—or any of the classic Zelda titles, for that matter—I was a little surprised at how straight-forward the steps to progress through the story came to me (even though I did have to look up a few answers still, haha.) However, this isn't by any means a negative or even a positive aspect to my experience, but it is something that I feel good about, nonetheless. After looking up the differences between the original Game Boy and updated Switch versions, it seems that, in addition to the great visual presentation, a fair amount of quality-of-life and content updates were added to the latter. The biggest of these updates is perhaps the additional dungeon creator aspect, which I admittedly did not venture to try, as I'm generally not interested in game modes such as this. Perhaps my only criticism is that, if one is attempting to collect every collectible, the means are quite grindy in addition to there being no reward except self-satisfaction. And, for this reason, I didn't go out of my way to collect everything, although I did search for as much as I could.

If you're a The Legend of Zelda fan and haven't experienced the Switch version, definitely check it out. If you're someone who has yet to venture into the older 2D Zelda games, I think that most would be fairly challenged and have an enjoyable experience. And, on that note, the same can be said to those who have not yet played any The Legend of Zelda title. I think that Link's Awakening would be a fine introduction to the series, as the world seems quite self-contained within the island the game takes place on.

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #79 on: February 22, 2021, 01:26:14 am »

6. King of Fighters XII (PS3)

7. King of Fighters XIII (PS3)



It's been way too long since I sat down and enjoyed some video games, so I figured after a not so stellar weekend I'd relax and play something I could jump right into and have a lot of fun with. I decided to revisit the KOF games on the PS3, both of which I haven't played in at least 8-years. I remember thinking KOF XII was a massive disappointment, but upon replaying it's way, way worse than just that. It literally feels like some unfinished alpha version of KOF XIII or some cancelled KOF game that was never made. I almost feel bad even comparing it to KOF XIII seeing how awesome that game is. But yeah, it has a small, disappointing roster, a completely forgettable OST, and also just feel and plays really off compared to most other KOF titles. I seriously can't recommend KOF XII unless you're a massive KOF fan or just want to collect some PS3 fighting games. (2/21/21) [24/50] On the other hand, KOF XIII is an excellent game, possibly the best in the entire franchise. It's super vast pace, excellent controls, very colorful and engaging graphics, and pretty good OST all contribute to how great it is. I played through KOF XIII several times due to how much fun I was having with it. Definitely an exemplary fighting game of the 2010s. (2/21/21) [38/50]

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #80 on: February 23, 2021, 03:33:45 pm »
I'm on a massive KOF kick right now and have beat the following games in the series over the last couple of days.


8. King of Fighters 94 (PS2)

9. King of Fighters 94: Re-Bout (PS2)

10. King of Fighters 95 (PS2)

We'll start where it all began! I haven't really sat down and played KOF 94 in a long, long time. But the game is definitely a classic and is pure aesthetic in terms of levels, music and stages. Unfortunately the gameplay is KOF 94's biggest limitation, which can be forgiven since it was the first game in the franchise. Still, this is a very fun, engaging fighting game that still hold up well even to this day. Unfortunately it's more modern remake is less than stellar. Pretty much 94 Re-Bout takes nearly everything that made the original KOF 94 special and awesome and replaces it completely with bland new stages, uninspired character sprites, and remixes that don't hold up as well as the original OST. Worse still, they left all the negatives about KOF 94's gameplay in tact. If anything they should have just overhauled the gameplay while keeping the visual and musical assets in tact. Was pretty disappointed in Re-Bout though. And finally KOF 95 is mostly an improvement over its predecessor, at least in terms of gameplay. Visually it's about the same, and I feel like the OST was a smidge better than 94. Overall though, I enjoyed 95 just a bit more which is what you'd expect in a game that sought to enhance its predecessor from the year prior.

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #81 on: February 23, 2021, 10:14:11 pm »
Well, I'm certainly making up for barely playing anything the first 45-days of this year lol.


11. King of Fighters 96 (PS2)

Unfortunately I didn't find KOF 96 an improvement over its predecessor, which was in turn an improvement over 94. Still, this was an excellent fighting game that at least had 95 beat in regards to gameplay, but lost a point in visuals mostly due to how it recycles a few stages with minor variations between them. Either way, you can't go wrong with either 95 or 96. (2/23/21) [35/50]

12. King of Fighters: Maximum Impact (PS2)

13. King of Fighters 2006 (aka Maximum Impact 2) (PS2)

I'd only briefly played one of these terrible games prior to diving into them this evening, and after doing so I wish I'd just let it stay that way. These games are an insult to KOF that have terrible, floaty gameplay with almost no depth or complexity, terrible graphics overall, and bad audio as well. In fact, the only positive thing I can pick out from this game is its terrible voice acting and hilarious lines that come from the characters; I was nearly in tears from laughter at a few parts in the game. Unfortunately though they're both complete crap, with 2006 only having a slight edge due to a slightly better OST. Either way though these are bad, bad games that I'd suggest no one ever play.


14. King of Fighters 2000 (PS2)

I feel like KOF 2000 tried to progress the series and provide something new, but in the end it's additions, mostly to its gameplay come across as somewhat superfluous. I'm mostly referring to the assist character system which has you selecting a 4th character that has a limited amount of times they can pop on screen to assist you in combat. No mater who I elected to be the assist character it never helped with turning the tide of battle in any way, and in fact the assist character missed my opponent about 75% of the time. Other than that, this is still a fun KOF entry with solid gameplay, excellent 2D characters and stages that definitely were polished up compared to 99 and previous entries, and it has one of the best soundtracks in the franchise. Still, even with all this it still falls short of many of the classic KOF games, but that's certainly not saying you shouldn't check it out because you definitely should if you're a fan of arcade tournament fighters from this era. (2/23/21) [35/50]

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #82 on: February 24, 2021, 01:43:00 am »
Okay, well this is certainly a record for me; today I have beat a total of 8 games! Given their all fighting games so this isn't like I beat 2 RPGs in one day or anything like that, but still. And to think I actually worked today to and still got all this accomplished! Throw in cross referencing and comparing these games with others that I both played today and have played and beat before and wow...that's a lot of King of Fighter lol. But here are the last ones I beat today.


15. King of Fighters 99: Evolution (Dreamcast)

To be perfectly honest this is the one and only version of KOF 99 I've ever played; the original one had non-3D stages and also the Evolution version has 2 extra stages. Other than that it's more or less the same game, but to be sure I actually ordered a copy of the original 99 version tonight that I'll be able to compare this one to for good measure. But anyhow, this entry in the KOF series was a lot better than I remember, especially from a gameplay standpoint. I was mistaken in my last post; the first KOF game to implement the Striker mechanic was this one, however it feel less annoying and in your face as with 2000 so it oddly didn't bother me as much. Other than that it looks excellent visually and also has a great, memorable OST. I actually ended up debating whether I liked this KOF more or some of the other ones that rank higher up for me. But regardless it's an excellent entry in the series and a solid start to the NESTs story arch. (2/23/21) [37/50]

16. King of Fighters 2001 (PS2)

Of course I had to balance out playing a surprisingly good KOF game with playing a surprisingly bad one following it. KOF 2001 is probably the ugliest 2D KOF game. The backgrounds are very plain and bland, and also look like someone smeared Vasoline on them. The music isn't that great either, but also isn't terrible either. But worse off was the gameplay which just felt kinda sloppy and broken at times. Sure it wasn't Maximum Impact bad, not even close, but it just felt limited compared to most other main series entries I've played. And this is even with the ability to more or less ignore the Striker mechanic, which was welcome, but the rest of the gameplay couldn't save this game unfortunately. This is probably the weakest modern KOF game (with the exception of 12 of course) and one I don't see myself wanting to play again. (2/23/21) [29/50]

17. King of Fighters 2002 (PS2)

Not to be confused with 2002 Unlimited Match, which is referred to as a remake of the original 2002, but honestly there are few similarities between them. They don't share stages, there are far fewer characters in this version, the gameplay is less precise and smooth in this version, and the menus and menu character art is way different. 2002 and 2002 Unlimited Match are completely different games as far as I'm concerned so I felt it appropriate to review this one separately. No question, 2002 is not as good as 2002 UM, but that doesn't mean it isn't a great game because it definitely is. 2002 was a very refreshing return to form after 2001. This game is all about the 3 on 3 team combat we all know and love from the KOF series; no gimmicks, no weird modes or mechanics, just straight up KOF awesomeness! I really have no noteworthy gripes about stock 2002 other than 2002 UM is definitely better, but honestly with most of the top KOF games you're comparing apples to applies in terms of quality so that isn't say 2002 UA is leagues better. But yeah, this is a top tier example of a KOF game that any fighting game fan should check out if they haven't. (2/23/21) [36/50]

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #83 on: February 24, 2021, 01:49:23 pm »
I'm on a massive KOF kick right now and have beat the following games in the series over the last couple of days.


8. King of Fighters 94 (PS2)

9. King of Fighters 94: Re-Bout (PS2)

10. King of Fighters 95 (PS2)

We'll start where it all began! I haven't really sat down and played KOF 94 in a long, long time. But the game is definitely a classic and is pure aesthetic in terms of levels, music and stages. Unfortunately the gameplay is KOF 94's biggest limitation, which can be forgiven since it was the first game in the franchise. Still, this is a very fun, engaging fighting game that still hold up well even to this day. Unfortunately it's more modern remake is less than stellar. Pretty much 94 Re-Bout takes nearly everything that made the original KOF 94 special and awesome and replaces it completely with bland new stages, uninspired character sprites, and remixes that don't hold up as well as the original OST. Worse still, they left all the negatives about KOF 94's gameplay in tact. If anything they should have just overhauled the gameplay while keeping the visual and musical assets in tact. Was pretty disappointed in Re-Bout though. And finally KOF 95 is mostly an improvement over its predecessor, at least in terms of gameplay. Visually it's about the same, and I feel like the OST was a smidge better than 94. Overall though, I enjoyed 95 just a bit more which is what you'd expect in a game that sought to enhance its predecessor from the year prior.

I got into a KOF kick late last year and it was a nice way to experience the KOF games I never really gave much time for in the past. It got very addicting.

dhaabi

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #84 on: February 24, 2021, 09:41:42 pm »
09. Never Alone || PlayStation 4 || 02.24.21

As a game wholly inspired by the native Alaskan group Iñupiat, the story of Never Alone is directly taken from the traditional oral tale Kunuuksaayuka. Created with the blessings of native families and village elders, and even being translated and play-tested by some of these same groups of individuals, Never Alone tells the story of a young girl whose village is being ravaged by a  monumental blizzard and then seeks out the blizzard's cause to save her people. Complementing the story, the gameplay largely comprises of standard platforming with light puzzle-solving.

Truthfully, from a gameplay perspective, Never Alone is minimal, lacking, at times difficult to control, and technically flawed. The player can either split control between the girl and a fox spirit who guides her, or the player can delegate the fox's controls to a second player. Playing the game on my own, there were regular annoyances in platforming successfully when needing to rely on both characters' actions and movements, which I believe are attributed to the game's frustrating and heavy controls.

With that said, the only reason the game should be someone's consideration is to learn about the Iñupiat people and their cultural history. Accompanying the gameplay are video interviews and the like which delve further into these people's history while also highlighting certain segments of the game's story. Having known that the game was a short 2-3 hours and having sat on it as a potential game to play for the last five years or so, I decided to finally play. While I don't necessarily regret my time with Never Alone, I do believe that the game is for a niche audience who are intrigued in cultural history.

tripredacus

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #85 on: February 25, 2021, 09:55:04 am »
15. Big Pharma
Marked as complete, as the game uses a scenario system. The first is the tutorial, which I will say was not actually enough for me to understand everything. The second is beginner. I have completed the Beginner scenario and will keep the game around to try the other scenarios in the future. Each of the different missions in the scenarios have different goals, but in the end the changes made to gameplay between missions is miniscule. You still basically end up doing the same thing over and over. There is no variable in the game with exception to that of the supply/demand aspects that change the ingredient or drug prices, which is also caused by the AI which is working in the background.

There is also a situation where there does not seem to be a failure condition. You can go into debt with fairly large numbers with no repercussions. You can take loans at any time they are available, and most importantly, can somehow make loan payment at negative cashflow. It is partly a puzzle game due to how the slots on machines are set up.

So I think it is a fun (for me) game and you can certainly get lost in it for a few hours. There seems to be some more back-end strategy involved that includes the market numbers, and there are certainly more things that can still be done. There is also a DLC available that I did not have, so that will be something to look at in the future.

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #86 on: February 26, 2021, 12:50:44 am »
I'm on a massive KOF kick right now and have beat the following games in the series over the last couple of days.


8. King of Fighters 94 (PS2)

9. King of Fighters 94: Re-Bout (PS2)

10. King of Fighters 95 (PS2)

We'll start where it all began! I haven't really sat down and played KOF 94 in a long, long time. But the game is definitely a classic and is pure aesthetic in terms of levels, music and stages. Unfortunately the gameplay is KOF 94's biggest limitation, which can be forgiven since it was the first game in the franchise. Still, this is a very fun, engaging fighting game that still hold up well even to this day. Unfortunately it's more modern remake is less than stellar. Pretty much 94 Re-Bout takes nearly everything that made the original KOF 94 special and awesome and replaces it completely with bland new stages, uninspired character sprites, and remixes that don't hold up as well as the original OST. Worse still, they left all the negatives about KOF 94's gameplay in tact. If anything they should have just overhauled the gameplay while keeping the visual and musical assets in tact. Was pretty disappointed in Re-Bout though. And finally KOF 95 is mostly an improvement over its predecessor, at least in terms of gameplay. Visually it's about the same, and I feel like the OST was a smidge better than 94. Overall though, I enjoyed 95 just a bit more which is what you'd expect in a game that sought to enhance its predecessor from the year prior.

I got into a KOF kick late last year and it was a nice way to experience the KOF games I never really gave much time for in the past. It got very addicting.


Dude, I am deep in it right now! I've probably played close to 30-hours of KOF over this past week and I don't feel like stopping lol. I've spent a decent amount of time with most of the main games, but really dove into several I just never played a lot like 99, the original 2002, 94 Re-Bout, and the Maximum Impact games (shudders). But they're incredible games and overall my favorite fighting game franchise of all time.

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #87 on: February 26, 2021, 01:01:28 am »
18. King of Fighters 2003 (PS2)

19. King of Fighters XI (PS2)

Funny enough, I've barely played one of these games prior to the other day, while the other one is probably a top 5 in the series in terms of playtime. I've played 2003 a handful of times over the years, but never for more than a few short play throughs. i decided to change that by spending a good amount of time digesting the game's mechanics and really appreciating how good of a game it is. Overall, KOF 2003 is one of the best games in the series and is incredibly well rounded overall. I also like the new tag system which I felt was well implemented in this title. It also has a great OST, excellent graphics, and is just a great experience overall. Returning to XI was like meeting up with an old friend...an old friend who you liked, but remembered how annoying they can be also. KOF XI is super fun with its unlockable characters, good graphics, and improved combo and tag system, but I always felt like some of the characters and their specials were just wildly broken in this game. And don't even get me started in the final boss! He is probably he cheapest bastard in the whole series which is saying a lot seeing how a fairly stable hallmark of the KOF series are its cheap as hell end bosses. Despite this KOF XI is still a great entry in the series and certainly one I'd wholeheartedly recommend.

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #88 on: February 26, 2021, 01:07:34 am »
20. Zanac X Zanac (PS1)

I completed my second Xstation install this evening and decided I was going to test it and reward myself with the fruits of my labor by playing a game! I decided to try out a shooter I've never played before due to it being a late release Japanese exclusive on the PS1, and sadly the last shooter Compile would develop before going bankrupt in the early 2000. Zanac X Zanac is a fairly underwhelming game visuals with a few exceptions, but what it lacks in visuals it makes up for some pretty good, yet still flawed gameplay. ZxZ relies on a chaining system to wrack up points, but also deal out huge damage to enemies and bosses. While he gameplay is good and the visuals are okay, the best part of ZxZ by far is its soundtrack! I mean, oh my god it has an incredible OST! If I go on youtube after playing and just want to listen to a game's soundtrack then it automatically means it was excellent! I'd definitely recommend this shooter which is truly a hidden gem if there ever was one. (2/25/21) [34/50]

Re: 52 Games Challenge 2021
« Reply #89 on: February 27, 2021, 01:04:39 am »
9 - Valheim (PC 2021) - ENDLESS - This game came out of nowhere for me, I was watching a streamer playing Rust, this game kept coming up, so I looked it over and it seemed like my kinda game, though it was in Early Access, and 80 hours later, I think I ended up liking it lol This is a survival/crafting game, with a 90's era aesthetic to the visuals, and a viking theme.  Comparable games to me would be like Minecraft and Terraria, that sorta level of build a base, get your gear, upgrade it, fight bosses, progress to the next gear type, etc...The "survival" aspect is actually sorta minimal, like you can't starve, you don't need to drink, you don't technically need to eat, as eating just increases your healthbar for a time.  You can die and all your gear drops in that spot for you to get back to it, which can be tough if you die far away from your current bed respawn. 

The crafting part is more where the game shines for me, you get a lot of freedom to how you want to build, within a couple basic rules based on building stability and rain damage that requires most built thing others than stone and I think the core wood beams to have a roof above it.  On top of this, you can basically terraform the terrain, leveling it out, digging deeper, filling up spots, so you can turn a lot of areas into sorta whatever setup you want.  You can farm the few available plants/veggies, you can tame boars for food, you got 5 different biomes I believe currently, each with their own enemies and such, you can craft viking longboats to explore, and there are 5 fleshed out bosses already with more to come.

It is in early access, with a small development team, but it apparently has been in development for like 2 years, and it shows, because if they had just spent a couple more months on this, filled in some of the gaps, clean up some of the wonkiness, released it for 20 to 30 dollars, it would be worth it right there.  It runs well, the 90's polygonal design with pixelated textures is kinda unique and probably helps that performance, it's got a large procedurally generated world, and you can play it co-op if you want to.  It's become ridiculously successful, hitting 4 million sales in less than a few weeks, so it'll definitely got the support it needs.  Highly recommend this game if you are into these types of farm and grind games.