Sonic Superstars is clearly a game made with a lot of love and passion for the Sonic community as a whole. New additions to the formula help to really set this entry apart from its predecessors and blaze new ground for a hopefully promising future. Co-op play is included in a way that's both intuitive and approachable for players who may have never encountered a Sonic game before, making Superstars a fantastic jumping on point. But in maintaining the core of classic Sonic gameplay, it also brings the common flaws of those very first games from years ago and stumbles in some key areas that will frustrate rather than engage with boss battles that slow the pace down to a crawl at times. While it may not reach the heights of previous Sonic games, this is a solid new entry for the series that fans will certainly enjoy, as well as their friends.
Long Gone Days is a game that is clearly more interested in telling a story rather than lighting the turn-based genre on fire. A mechanically solid RPG frames the story of Rourke and his allies. In that regard, the story that is delivered is a phenomenal exploration of the genuine costs of war on those who are forced to survive. It's a deeply resonant story that will likely connect with a great many people. Pixel-art and character portraits help to avoid the typical drab and dreariness that almost defines this genre of story. Extreme effort has gone into making sure the main party and those around them are characterised in a very human way, despite the art-style being rooted in a clear anime influence. There are some moments that may break the illusion of this weighty narrative and these moments did take me out of some of the action. In spite of this, I still enjoyed my time with the game, with a story that will sit with me for a long time.
Pizza Possum is a wonderful game that can be picked up by almost anyone and enjoyed. An offbeat and amusing premise lead into a mechanically sound game that works on pretty much every level. And is all wrapped in a presentation that is clear and absolutely adorable. My only complaints come from just how quickly the game runs its course; a bit more variety in the later parts of the game would have been the cherry ontop of the (possibly stolen) cake. But for the time that the game does keep you guessing, it was a fantastic ride. I can't wait to go back and see what other options I can find in the future, either by myself or dragging my friends along for another heist.
Enchanted Portals takes the foundations of a familiar game in both style and substance, yet fails to provide a compelling experience in either regard. There's clear effort being put into this game in terms of the art and animation, yet the gameplay feels far more unpolished than appearances would have you believe. Random level designs and frustrating enemy placement leads to a game that irritated far more than I would have hoped, with a good amount of my losses not feeling close to my fault.
There's a solid foundation to build upon here but far too many decisions feel contrived and confused for a strong recommendation to anyone other than the most diehard Touhou fan. Far too many mechanics can be borderline ignored, and the game hardly evolves throughout, leading to a game that struggled to keep my attention throughout its runtime with some nice visuals only doing so much to alleviate this tedium.
With some stand-out moments peppered throughout, Virgo Versus The Zodiac was an engrossing play from start to end. Some basic and convoluted combat mechanics hold this game back from being a true homerun but the charm of Virgo's journey carries it through these rough moments.