Broken foot + Heatwave = PS4 game weekend - help me decide what to play!
July 25, 2019 8:07 AM   Subscribe

Hello All. I have broken my foot/toe and have been told to stay off of it for a few days. There's a heatwave followed by torrential rain in Scotland and my partner is going away for a long weekend. So, help is needed with suggestions for newer/alternative PS4 games - I'm treating myself and would like to buy one or two, with a few caveats...

No major releases that I am super interested in, so I have a few that I am considering below. Reviews all seem to be very varied so I'd really appreciate a MeFi take. I'm not super interested in pre-2016 games as have mostly tried and tested (see my first ever question if interested!)

1. Horizon Zero Dawn DLC: Frozen Wilds. Loved the game, have played through twice and am quite tempted.

2. Observation: Is it very scary? I didn't quite get to grips with Prey and it seems possibly similar and it was a bit jump-scare/confusing.

3. A Plague Tale: had not heard about this at all - have you played this? Is it fun? (my general likes are below)

4. Detroit Become Human: I was all for this but then seemed like woman characters were very cliched and I am so fed up of misogynistic BS in real life I just can't do it....

5. Fallout 4 DLC? Any in particular? AGain, reviews seem to be very varied..


1. Must be able to play as a woman especially if the game is open world. I am not super keen on playing red dead redemption 2 or witcher 3 because of this (I can be open to persuasion, but it's almost a deal breaker for me).

2. Already played/playing: Fallout 4; Dishonoured 1 and 2; No Mans Sky; Mass Effect Andromeda; Horizon Zero Dawn.

3. Previous favourite games: Mass Effect Trilogy; Fallout games; Dishonored; Bioshock; also PC adventure although I haven't played many adventure or puzzle games on PS4.

Appreciate this is fairly specific but would be very grateful for your opinions. My total budget is around £50 and ideally I'd like to be able to buy a couple of new games within this price point.

posted by sedimentary_deer to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Have you played the most recent Deus Ex game, Mankind Divided? That's a good shooty/sneaky game with a decent story.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 8:18 AM on July 25, 2019 [1 favorite]

Frozen Wilds is 95% really really good, like you'd expect from H:ZD, but also about 5% "Shieldweaver was kinda overpowered in endgame so we introduced mechanics to break it." Like how so much of the endgame in Borderlands2 ended up being about controlling The Bee.

Fallout 4 DLC: Automatron is kinda eh, the fun part is building new robots. The building-stuff ones, including the vault-tec one, are definitely meh. Far Harbor is 99% really great and more fallouty than fo4 base, but also 1% annoying and uncharacteristic puzzle. Nuka World might be extra fun if you want to be a dick to the Commonwealth... me, I just wait until I'm high level and then walk in and kill all the fuckers, so for me it's just another area full of enemies but not many quests.

Have you ever tried the Saint's Row games, which don't appear in the earlier ask? You can use any of several female voices (irrespective of what your body looks like). Never played 1, 2 is walking a line between being 80% silly shit but 20% trying to be a serious gangster game, 3 and beyond lean into the silly REALLY hard. Insurance Fraud and Septic Avenger are the best.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 8:27 AM on July 25, 2019

So I made it through the various Mass Effect games with some heavy eye-rolling at the endless parade of Asari strippers and goofy boob-windows and all the conversations with the camera pointed at whatserface's butt.

I could never get through more than a little bit of Witcher 3. Admittedly, the game doesn't *literally* start by leering at a naked woman's ass -- there's like 10 seconds of a dude in a bathtub first. But then it goes straight to leering at a naked woman's ass.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 8:36 AM on July 25, 2019

Two puzzle game recommendations: The Sexy Brutale, a short (~10 hours total if you're being thorough and going for all the trophies) puzzle/mystery game from 2015 or 2016. Interesting mechanic and story, and a delightful soundtrack. (You do play as a man in this one though.) And Heaven's Vault, a 2019 game in which you play an archaeologist trying to discover a lost civilization and decipher their written language. That's more or less the entirety of the gameplay -- there's a story, of course, but all the gameplay elements are finding inscriptions and deciphering them.

My sort of left-field suggestion: Watch Dogs 2. Again, you do play as a man in this one, but I really liked playing as Marcus Holloway (I very much share your requirement to be able to play as a woman character in RPGs). And it's entirely possible (if often somewhat difficult) to play Marcus as a pacifist. I know the first Watch Dogs game was a bit too "angsty white boy" but the sequel was a lot of fun IMO.
posted by Janta at 8:46 AM on July 25, 2019

hzd frozen thingy is great although some of the machines are BIG and SCARY and i yelled a lot.

have you done the dishonored death of the outsider dlc? it is excellent.

the new assassin's creed is 100% playable as a female main character who is amazing and is also my strong beautiful wife forever
posted by poffin boffin at 8:53 AM on July 25, 2019

Will throw in for HZD:FW, it's pretty solid. New enemy types aren't as interesting as I'd like but... I loved the game, it's more of the game, What More Do You Want.

A Plague Tale is pretty good! Much better than I expected, and forefronts both young & adult women as capable protagonists. There's a fair amount of violence against them, but it doesn't feel any different than the violence toward everyone, and so far (I'm not finished it yet) it hasn't been at all sexualized, for once.

Definitely stay away from Detroit. It's got some interesting parts but a lot of flaws too, only 1/3 of the playable characters is female, and her arc is by far the most clichéd and gross and the trope of "weak woman experiences violence while protecting weak little girl quasi-maternally" is present in its fullest, worst form - despite the woman in question being, you know, literally a robot.
posted by Tomorrowful at 9:00 AM on July 25, 2019 [2 favorites]

That was fast - thanks all! OK, so out of the above, Heaven's Gate, Saint's Row, Deus Ex, Assassin's Creed new to me; was never interested in AC before because you could only play as a man and when I tried a previous version on xbox 360 I wasn't that into it. Shall investigate - thank you!

Should say that I have played the Dishonored 2 DLC (death of outsider) - queer, WOC: LOVED IT!

Edit: just seen tomorrowfulls post - thanks, this is just what I was after regarding Detroit: Human and HZD. Plague Tale seems intriguing so it's great to hear how it's going for others...
posted by sedimentary_deer at 9:03 AM on July 25, 2019

Quick update - apologies and will back off now but followed some rabbit holes...

What about:

1. Mirror's edge catalyst?

2. inFAMOUS first light?

3. Senua Hellblade?

Thanks so much for all the great suggestions so far :)
posted by sedimentary_deer at 9:23 AM on July 25, 2019

Try Assassin's Creed: Odyssey. You can play as Kassandra and she's a great character. It's very open world and can be as easy or hard as you would like. I found the game to be a lot of fun. You don't have to have played any other AC games. Some of the back story may be a little confusing, but for 98% of the game, it won't matter.
posted by MCTDavid at 12:13 PM on July 25, 2019 [1 favorite]

Saints Row IV is bonkers, and some of the most fun I've ever had playing a video game.
posted by Ragged Richard at 1:28 PM on July 25, 2019

Oh!!! You are me, almost entirely except that I loved Prey. Mass Effect is my fave ever. Also loved all the other games you list in your faves.

1) HZD DLC: yes. Good story, beautiful setting, some cool female characters, some fun new outfits including a less ugly master stealth outfit and the upgraded Carja outfit that your Hawk in the Hunter's Guild wears, some very good addition to the lore of the game, and it's MORE TIME WITH ALOY! Plus the new skill tree has some nice quality of life improvements related to storage space, crafting materials, and mounts. It's definitely balanced for post-game characters-the new machine types are harder than anything in the base game (some of them will make you WISH for Thunderjaws and Ravagers!) but it also gives you a higher level cap and better equipment to make up for it. And you get to spend more time with the Banuk, which is fun.
2) Observation: I LOVED Observation and I am a big scaredy cat about scary games (Prey and BioShock were the upper limits of my scare tolerance, for reference.) I would classify it as a thriller/suspense sci-fi game. It can be *tense* for sure and there were one or two places that startled me but mostly it's more about puzzles and exploration. The relationship between Emma and SAM is really good. The story is cool. The setting is very cool.
3) I haven't played Plague Tale (uggggh rat waves) or 4) Detroit, so can't speak to that.
5) Fallout 4 DLC: Like them a lot! Have them all! Which ones you get depend on what you like to do in game. For just "a lot more Fallout 4" get Far Harbor. It's just a whole bunch more quests and stories and settlements and gear and people to meet and companions and stuff and is the size of a whole game, great value. If you love settlement building get the settlement one. I liked the one where you get to make your own Vault because - you GET to MAKE your own VAULT. The Nuka-World one is interesting but the fatal flaw in it is that to finish its main questline you either have to side with the raiders and raid a bunch of your OWN SETTLEMENTS in the base game, or you have to kill all the raiders for basically no rewards. I played it through to near the end and didn't finish that questline.

From other suggestions:
-Saint's Row 3 and 4: it's essentially a GTA parody game series and has some issues that you may or may not enjoy from there BUT it has one of the most legit progressive character creators in modern gaming. 3 has a gender SLIDER that I wish 4 had kept. However, in both games, you can make your characters in many different builds including fat, you can put any of the many available voices on any character with no gender restrictions, any character can wear any of the MANY in-game costumes without gender restrictions, and there's not really romance but you can flirt with NPCs of whatever gender you choose. SR4 is BONKERS and I found it really fun. I did NOT expect to like those games and I very much did, so it may be worth checking out (or memail me if you want to know more about the content.)
-The Sexy Brutale is a great puzzle game. You play as a male character but he's not a Generic Grizzled White Man (he's an elderly priest IIRC) so that makes it less annoying to me as another "if I can't play as a woman it's a tough sell" gamer. Innovate and clever puzzle and the story was genuinely affecting to me.
-Prey and Prey: Mooncrash: I know you bounced off it but I wanted to put in a plug because you seem to have really similar taste to me and I LOVED Prey. The thing is, the start of Prey is the most confusing/scary part and once you progress a bit things get less scary and more like Dishonored In Space, But Better. Once you go through the level where you get the... I forget the name, the helmet thing where you can see what is a mimic, that was the point where it turned around from "scream and smash every random item with a wrench" to "OH I GET it! COOL!" to me. Prey: Mooncrash is really really good if you can get to grips with the base gameplay.
-Have not played Hellblade, I've heard it's really good but also quite intense/scary.
-Have not played Infamous
-Tried to play the first Mirror's Edge, Just Could Not with the controls of it. I fell off every ledge, over and over.

Some more suggestions:
Life Is Strange and Life Is Strange: Before the Storm. These are more narrative/exploration/adventure games than action games but they are really good and they are coming-of-age stories featuring queer teenage girls who might also have supernatural powers. Be prepared to get really emotionally attached to people and possibly cry. Play unspoiled.

This is a bit out of left field but: Dream Daddy. You mention that you appreciated the queer content in DotO so I wanted to plug this absolutely pure-hearted and charming dating sim where you play as a dad who dates other dads. You can play as a trans or cis dad, as a bi/pan or gay dad, as a dad of various builds and races, and the cast of dateable dads is diverse as well. Your daughter in the game is fantastic and the relationships and stories are very sincere and sweet. Doesn't tick the female protagonist box but could be worth a look.

I have been playing Nier: Automata. You do play as a... well, as an android who looks female, I don't know that androids have gender per se. I enjoy the game but unfortunately the female character models are pretty sexualized. It is a fun to play game with some really interesting elements if you are a fan of stories that explore elements of robot consciousness though.

One that nobody has mentioned: Tacoma!! It's so, so good. You play as a woman of color and the cast of characters include many people of color and LGBT+ people and the story is awesome. This is the second game by the makers of Gone Home, which is ALSO good, but I've played them both and Tacoma is my favorite.

I really hope this is helpful!

(Side note, if you are looking for video game related content that is, shall we say, not full of awful, I really like Eurogamer's YouTube channel. They are pretty swear-y if that bothers you, but one of the primary editors/presenters is a bisexual woman and they call out problematic elements in the games they cover in a way that I appreciate a lot.)
posted by oblique red at 3:58 PM on July 25, 2019 [3 favorites]

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