The first episode of Dontnod's Life is Strange 2 promises a bigger, more complex story than told by its predecessor, charting a cross-country road trip across Donald Trump's America. Though its social criticisms feel broad and rather clumsy so far, its core story of brotherhood and fraternity between two believable characters is already enormously touching. Like the original, Life is Strange 2 Episode 1 makes time for small details and quiet moments, and when it does it's capable of a beauty we rarely see in video games.
There's no doubt that City of Brass is meant to be punishing. But between its ungainly controls, its inability to stave off a sense of tedious repetition, and spirit-breaking lack of progression, it feels far less fair and more painful than its rogue-lite brethren. Its superficial use of the Arabian Nights folklore, combined with its monotonous design and reliance on exotic cliche, make it as uninteresting to experience as it is excruciating to endure.
Intuitive, authentic, and surprisingly realistic, Killing Floor: Incursion emphasizes the physical dimension of its virtual world, delighting in the tactile qualities of VR and making the most every little object. Whether you're staring down the scope of a remarkably believable sniper rifle or clobbering enemies with the dismembered arm of one of their own fallen comrades, you never fail to have a clear, satisfying sense of how every item, weapon or body part feels.
Clumsy, superficial, and in many ways fundamentally broken, Crisis On the Planet of the Apes is an often infuriating VR game that plays like a bad arcade rail shooter from the early ‘90s. Far from reaching the artistic heights of the rebooted film series in whose world it takes place, it takes a silly, action-heavy approach to the material that doesn't respect your intelligence. It's perhaps the worst thing to happen to the Apes franchise since Mark Wahlberg saw the monkeyfied Lincoln Memorial.