What makes Heart of Iron IV work is the fact that although it’s moulded around just ten years of history, it offers so much historical background and variable outcomes, and as such packs a mightier punch than might be at first expected. It’s complicated - overly so at times - and may not offer the same amount of replayability as other genre similars, but one thing is certain: there is rarely a dull moment.
Fallout 4’s second slice of DLC is under a fiver, yet still somehow feels overpriced. Granted, there’s a good idea hiding in there somewhere – capturing wild creatures for defense or spectator sport purposes is a genuinely interesting concept, particularly against the end of the world scenario – but Wasteland Workshop fails to execute it with the finesse needed to see it through. As such, it instead feels like a paid, and therefore largely underwhelming, mod.
Fans of Supreme Commander and Total Annihilation will lap up the similarities, but Ashes of the Singularity is far more than a clone. When you take all of this into consideration and add unsurpassed scale to the mix, you’re definitely onto a winner.
It's a game that understands everything about itself and how it works. It's the best stealth game ever made and feels like a game-changer for the medium as a whole - through its scope, the freedom it offers its players, and its deft structure. Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain is the apex of the series and a fitting way for Kojima et al to bow out: as one, as best, as Big Boss.
At times, Volume may fly too close to its Metal Gear Solid roots - creator Mike Bithell has unashamedly noted 1998's stealth 'em up as a distinct source of inspiration - but what it lacks in immediate originality, aesthetically at least, it makes up for in innovative, engaging, and challenging level design. To brand this a clone would be more criminal than Gisborne's corporatocratic rule.
Payday 2: Crimewave Edition has been given a spit shine and a sprinkling of new features, but unfortunately the nuance ends there. If you already own the original on PS3 or Xbox 360 there's not an abundance to write home about. If you don't, Crimewave Edition is still worth your time, but it's far from the perfect score.