I’ve only played those splendid 30 minutes, thanks to the size of the download, a tight embargo, and some server histrionics. I’m nowhere near a final verdict – I’ll get there as soon as I can, of course – but it’s already impressive just how engaging Anthem has been, and in how many ways. That glimmer has become a gleam.
Creative Assembly's art team has outdone itself, building a visual treat that drips with detail. However, Curse of the Vampire Coast's sheen is let down by a one-note campaign.
With a darker, more nuanced story, loads of activities, and clever tweaks to its core systems, Forsaken vastly improves the quality, quantity, and structure of content in Destiny 2. It could still peter out if the raid is bad or the DLC is as poor as last year's, but as of now, Destiny is fun again.
Age of Empires: Definitive Edition is still lumbered with some of the quirks of its '90s origins. This is understandable - it is a remaster, not a remake - but those quirks do cause some friction. Beneath them, though, the underlying gameplay remains as solid as a fully upgraded phalanx.
Aesthetic brilliance and great gunplay can't wholly save Destiny 2's campaign from trivial difficulty, repetitive action, and a go-nowhere plot. Its best content in the mid-game and beyond is betrayed by a reward economy that nudges you instead toward a vacuous treadmill made of public events, and which truncates the endgame.
Total War's mechanics and the Warhammer setting complement one another beautifully, and Creative Assembly has mostly nailed the execution. Total War: Warhammer is the best representation of the Warhammer universe there has ever been in a video game, and the best entry in the Total War series for some time.
Beautiful to look at, thrilling to play and infused with the gleefully anarchic spirit of the original, *Doom* offers the best and most refreshing shooter campaign in years. This alone would justify the price tag, but abundant secrets and potentially endless content via SnapMap add further longevity. *Doom* is back.
Every element of Dark Souls III reinforces the others, from the broad, contiguous sweep of its stunning yet desolate world to the tiniest, menacing croak of a waiting basilisk. This triumphant summation of the series to date sets a new standard for action-RPG gameplay, and is a landmark achievement in game design.
Garden Warfare 2 looks great, boasts a huge roster of inventive characters and contributes much to the social shooter genre. Single-player and PvE content is lacking, however, and this exacerbates the already glacial pace of progression.
I had far more fun with Legacy of the Void than I was expecting to. The campaign is excellent, and even as a newcomer, transitioning from the single-player to dabbling in multiplayer was surprisingly smooth. RTS fans past and present should take this opportunity to return to StarCraft, or - even better - join the action for the first time.
A mostly successful step out of Civilization V's shadow, Rising Tide is a fine strategy game that only suffers in comparison to its truly great predecessors.