There were moments where it felt like I was playing the same game that came out when I was 11. But the look was just a bit more lavish, and the funky bass line was arranged just differently enough. Back in the Groove is the perfect mix of polish and nostalgia, and one that I can’t wait to play through again.
The easy way out for Dontnod would have been to take the most time-worn tropes from dime store horror novels, season to taste with period melodrama and serve it all up for players to enjoy. Vampyr reaches for more, and I'm very interested to see if the finale does it all justice
Raid: World War II disappoints on all levels. It's not that one thing in particular is badly broken; it's that so many aspects of the game are clumsy or incomplete. It made playing the game a chore, even in its best moments. Sometimes a terrible movie or game will still have things that make it enjoyable — hilariously cheesy dialogue or over-the-top action that I end up liking in spite of the low budget or poor production values. With Raid, there's just nothing here for me, and I can't imagine there being much here for anyone else.
Pairing the tactical brilliance of the Total War series with the rich lore of the Warhammer universe is a natural fit, and Total War: Warhammer 2 fulfills the promise of that combination. It is a deep and challenging experience with an epic story to tell. It is also one of the most overwrought games of the year, a game where complexity seems to be piled on for complexity's sake.
In spite of a few glaring technical issues, XCOM 2 represents a high water mark for the entire franchise. Firaxis successfully tells an evocative story. It treats players with respect and includes so many small quality of life improvements over the original they are simply too numerous to mention. It is challenging enough at its basic difficulty level to feel like a complete experience. Despite the bugs, it's still the best-looking, most exciting turn-based tactical game I've ever played.