- Final Fantasy VII
- Persona 4
- A Link to the Past
The previous entries in the Project CARS series catered completely towards the sim racer and the decision to break away from that is both strange and bold. Not only has the series abandoned its roots, it doesn't seem to acknowledge them, either, with the team stating this is still a sim gaming. It's not, though - at all. However, that's not a bad thing for the casual fans. The result is a brand new, arcade racer that wider audiences can truly enjoy. Slightly Mad Studios has crafted a fast, frantic, and enjoyable arcade experience. The new cars feel individual and there's plenty of incentive to replay challenges to get the career level increased and the career achievements completed. It's just a shame then, that there's a key part that so negatively impacts the whole experience of Project CARS 3, and that is the grind. It regularly makes things so much worse and it seems like such a quick thing to fix - just increase the money paid out. Make it retrospective for those who have already invested so much time and this will instantly address the biggest issue.
Early glimpses of the puzzles and dungeons showed just how great Ary and the Secret of Seasons could be, and while those are realised here, it's just not enough to make up for the numerous issues and missteps. Many players won't be able to even see those best moments unless they have the considerable patience needed to be able to get over halfway through. A true disappointment; there is an awful lot to like here, but ultimately it's hard to recommend this. Strangely, considering how many times it's been delayed, this just feels unfinished, like a preview build.
A wonderful puzzler with a marvellous aesthetic. Like a children's anime come to life, Mr. DRILLER DrillLand is utterly charming and delightful. Every attraction looks great, delivering sharp, vibrant, and colourful stages in every attraction. As good as it looks, it plays even better. A simple and addictive core basis that has the heart of a classic matching colour puzzler but adds an exhilarating twist to the proceedings with the drilling mechanics. This should be a no brainer purchase, but there's something that will put off many players. It's called the Atlantic Ocean. For some reason, the asking price is literally double in the US than it is in the EU. A baffling and disappointing decision that will sadly stop this reaching as many homes as it should.
Perhaps Jupiter should have stuck with Picross and continued gathering partnerships with other franchises for Picross spin-offs like the recent Picross: Lord of Nazarick. Fans of Diner Dash will enjoy this blatant clone, but based on the asking price this just is not worth the investment. Check out the far superior Overcooked instead.
Those who love The Binding of Isaac and Enter the Gungeon will find an awful lot to like here. The gameplay is fast and fluid, the presentation striking, and there is a huge amount to keep coming back for. There are tons of things to unlock that change up subsequent runs, unique seeds to master the most enjoyable versions of levels, and even an insanely challenging difficulty mode to unlock. The biggest issue is the small amount of rooms to pull from when generating a stage. It's not too noticeable for a few play-throughs, but for the players who will run this over and over, it really detracts from the experience.
The start of Windbound feels very promising - the world looks beautiful, the sailing wonderful, and the development of the crafting system well done. However, after the first few hours, things start to fall apart. The repetitive nature and lack of growth of the core mechanics really hold it back from what it could have been. There's still an enjoyable experience here, but it is obvious it could be so much more, and ultimately feels a little unfinished. This is only the second game to come from indie developer 5 Lives Studios, and it's exciting to see what the team comes up with next.
This is the Bill Bailey of golf games. An insane, surrealist experience that throws so much at the wall - often literally - that a lot of it sticks. It's inclusive, and enjoyable, to the point that anyone in the family can pick it up and play, while still managing to offer up a real challenge in later stages and on the online modes. Fun, funny, replayable, and certifiable. While this may not be everyone's cup of "Tee," no ifs, no putts, this is one you won't fore-get soon.
The comic setting works great, and the story is an interesting take on the overused dystopian and Orwellian future. Liberated snatches attention with its premise and the neo-noir aesthetic, but ultimately ends up feeling unfinished. The dialogue choices and the puzzles feel tacked on and undeveloped. The style looks great in stills, but in action it's messy. It feels like this so close to being something truly special, it just needed a bit more time.
A perfect example of nostalgia glasses. In short, this may be a hidden gem, but it is completely representative of its time. 2D Platformers have long moved on, and this deserved some overhaul to the core gameplay, instead of just a graphical improvement and a tacked-on multiplayer experience. The soundtrack is a perfect encapsulation of the game as a whole. Utterly charming for the first few moments, but then each track repeats again. And again. And again. One note. Those who enjoyed the first may find themselves questioning why they did, should they dive into the murky waters here.