Even for all its charm, it’s easy to see an older version of Nintendo at work in Pikmin 3 Deluxe. It is defined by a competence and execution of interlocking systems rather than the expansive wonder that came to define the developer’s biggest hits of the Switch era. For all the ways that the game does manage to convey a certain sense of scale at times, it’s a far cry from the open horizons of Breath of the Wild or the maddeningly deep puzzle boxes of Super Mario Odyssey. It’s a game from the Wii U era, before Nintendo had quite figured out how to expand its sense of whimsy to a much wider audience.
[Luigi's Mansion 3] is a contained, crafted experience, no more and no less than a professional, clean and near-perfect execution of an idea that you already like. It is not shockingly new or transcendent, but you don’t always want that. It is relentlessly charming, consistently charming, and punctuated in every moment by the sheer joy of sucking.
If you have the time and the inclination, buy Red Dead Redemption 2. It's a great game. It's an impressive game. Just know what you're getting into, and do your best to make it through the story to what's on the other side. This review is now nearly 3000 words long, and not nearly long enough for one of the greatest and most vexing games I've played in years.
Super Mario Odyssey is a fun game, an unoriginal observation that feels nonetheless vital in the modern gaming landscape. It is a game that tasks you with finding joy, and then lets you point yourself in the right direction. It is a game you should play.
The pacing, as always, is impeccable, moving between climbing, combat and puzzle-solving at just enough of a clip to keep things engaging, ending with an impressive set piece that rivals the series' best on both a technical and visual level.