Garden Warfare was a surprise when it was announced, and you'll be surprised when you play it what PopCap managed to accomplish. But it can get repetitive when the jokes run dry, and the system designed to combat this is locked behind piles of crumpled tinfoil and stacks of unwanted stickers. If you're starving for more brains, charge in. But don't be afraid to let this plant grow a bit before enlisting.
Destiny has not achieved greatness, yet. It is however, extremely fun to play.
Depending on what you want from Disney Infinity 2.0 Edition you'll either be underwhelmed or overjoyed. Maybe both. You can see exactly where improvements have been made, and where the series still needs to grow. We're disappointed in the lack of diversity from the available Playsets, but there is still a ridiculous amount of stuff to collect, and it's now more accessible, customizable, and fun than ever.
If you're fond of Tolkien, you should enjoy this side story without being too offended by the updates to popular lore. If you've enjoyed Assassin's Creed, you may appreciate the visceral change of pace the game brings to the genre of open-world stealth. The world feels alive and treacherous, the combat gives you lots of gruesome options, and the enemy army is always evolving. It might not offer the challenge you crave, but if you enjoy killing orcs, there are two maps filled with the savage monsters and they're all looking for a fight.
Fantasia: Music Evolved reminds you why you bother keeping the Xbox camera around. If you and your loved ones enjoy music at all, there are a lot of reasons why this game will make you happy. But compared to a dancing star or a rock god, a melody magician doesn't have the same prestige, and the simplified gameplay is evidence of that. Like everything Disney inspires, it's the colorful and playful energy that will keep you coming back. It's just tough to stay excited about waving your arms around for very long.
You can wrap up the story in about 6 hours. There are 12 costumes to try on and 27 cards to collect. Whether you can handle the grind or not Costume Quest 2 is a shallow game. It's also a celebration of this sacred holiday that you may find yourself replaying next year. If there's still time before the sun rises on November 1st, you may not regret buying this game.
Advanced Warfare is Call of Duty's true starting point for a new generation. The tech enhancements are an important evolution for the franchise, giving the online proceedings a necessary shot in the arm. The campaign is predictable but thrilling with enough exclusive tech tricks and set-pieces to make it a must-play. The co-op can sustain you for multiple hours, and it's hard to imagine playing Call of Duty multiplayer without an Exo-suit ever again. Sledgehammer has found fun in the future, and we can't wait to go back to it.
Every Assassin's Creed since II seems to focus on a particular gimmick, from the brotherhood, to the wilderness, to the open seas. Unity is an attempt to get back to the basics of stealth-action, and there are a lot of subtle upgrades that make the formula feel freshly tailored for this new generation. This is an extremely ambitious, beautiful game that you can spend a lot of time with. Unfortunately, system performance may vary substantially, Arno's story is a bit underwhelming, and if you don't have a few patriots to join you in battle the co-op missions won't impress. History has given us better Assassin's Creed games than this, but the Animus can still simulate a captivating adventure.
Far Cry 4 will enchant you with its lush forests, scenic vistas, and hostile wildlife but it's the mission and combat variety that will keep you exploring. You're bound to have a few gameplay oddities manifest themselves as Kyrat is a complex, open-world with many moving parts, but load times are rather pleasant and the textures and lighting are impressive. It doesn't take a lot of risks with the Far Cry formula, but once we enlisted we couldn't rest until the people of Kyrat were free of tyranny, and all the icons on the map were checked off.
Fans of zombie survival, open worlds, and first-person shooters will find things to enjoy in Dying Light, but it's a rough ride. The contextual movement and realistic time progression suggest that Techland wants to immerse you in Harran's apocalyptic plight, but the game's realism takes a hit at almost every turn whether it's the graphics, the enemy AI, or the mannequin-like demeanor of the souls you'll attempt to save. Jumping around and smacking zombies is fun, but we're hoping whatever comes next focuses more on realistic living people than realistic dead ones.
The best thing Valley of the Yetis has going for it is the inherent fun that comes from using Far Cry 4's skills, weapons, and vehicles. Everything else feels wasted. The station defense battles are spectacles, but not that challenging. The Yetis are intimidating, but don't stay scary for long. With no legitimate lead into or out of the story, it's hard to take any of it seriously. It's definitely the biggest chunk of extra content to come out of the game, but not the best.
The biggest element that feels missing is the incredible character interaction from New Order. There are some memorable people in Old Blood, but no strong attachments, despite the game clearly attempting to toy with our emotions. The pace of the adventure grows too fast to develop the type of relationships we remember from New Order, but when the whole thing is over it's clear that's not the point. This is constructed as a fun trip through the best parts of prior Wolfenstein games, and it mostly succeeds in that mission. We wish it had crazier weapons and more complex personalities but it's still fun.
We can't tell you if Arkham Knight is indeed the end of this Batman's career, but if it is the last time Rocksteady works on the franchise, they've ended their era with a bang. Arkham Knight tells a mature story that cares about its characters. The missions are a little over-committed to showing how much the Batmobile can do, but it also feels like the car completes Rocksteady's vision of a living, breathing Gotham City; a war zone with lots of problems to solve and lots of fun ways to solve them.
Any purchase you make in Disney Infinity will reward you in many ways, and between the Toy Boxes you build for yourself, the ones packed into the Hub, and those you download online, there's a crazy amount of levels. Few games today receive this much support throughout the year, and have such a dedicated community of people giving users more and more inventive creations to enjoy. If this year of Infinity is anything like the last two, 3.0 is something that kids of all ages will want to be a part of.
There are some incredible moments waiting for you. You just have to dig a little to find them.
If you're a fan of Frictional Games, you'll find Soma equally spooky and thought-provoking. At times it was difficult for us to maintain our immersion in this nightmare under the sea.
If you need to buy all of Rock Band 4 to get a band going, it's a lot to pick up, but it's a worthy investment if you're in the market for a great party game. If you're fortunate enough to already have compatible gear or pre-purchased music ready to download, there's no reason not to rock again.
The Live in Guitar Hero Live means a lot of things. In one mode, you're pretending to actually rock out in front of a packed arena, and in the other you're constantly competing against the rest of the world online. Your band mates overact sometimes, and you don't always get to pick the song you want to play in GHTV, but there's always a ton of music to play. So much is new, from the stage perspective, to the streaming service, to the updated guitar, that it feels like a worthy revival.
There's a lot going on in Black Ops 3, and all of it is a blast to play.