I can lean back and pick out plenty of things about Owlboy that frustrated me, but its failings shrink in the face of its triumphs. I have no excess of affection for the 16-bit genre retreads but even as Owlboy lacks the tightness or consistency of many of the games it sits alongside, it’s far more approachable, far more endearing, and far more unique.
If that's my biggest problem with it after clearing each of the game's five core endings, that should say everything. Nier: Automata is a game that's more than willing to make players feel small, both physically and conceptually. It wants to swallow them whole, and it succeeds. Nier demands patience with its antics — not to mention its definition of "ending" — but it's patience was rewarded.