One Piece's 3DS debut in One Piece: Romance Dawn sets sail but is quickly sunk under monotonous fights, endless corridor roaming that would put Final Fantasy XIII to shame, and a recurring reminder that it is merely a slapdash port adapted to none of the 3DS' strengths.
Sucker Punch has struck gold once again with Second Son, putting the PlayStation 4's power to good use and providing gamers with a rich, satisfying experience. Slow start and samey missions aside, the spectacle of the main character's arsenal alone is reason enough for new PS4 owners to put this at the top of their shopping list.
Helping to wash away the act of piracy that was One Piece: Romance Dawn and Unlimited Cruise SP, Unlimited World Red presents an elegantly realised universe full of colour and series charm, held together with fun fights and rewarding tasks. The repetition of said features, plus the lack of the Wii U's strengths being put to use is unfortunate, but dedicated One Piece fans and patient newcomers will find a lot to love.
Just past its two year anniversary, the Wii U eShop is already home to a vast number of heavy hitters, and Stealth Inc. 2: A Game of Clones stands amongst the best of them. With a subtle yet engaging plot device and atmospheric environment, dastardly devilish challenges, and a shelf life of features beyond many other games, this stealth puzzler is an easy sell.
Taking many tropes from the Metroidvania sub-genre of games, and adding a mechanic all of its own, The Swapper succeeds in creating an interesting world to explore and challenging puzzles to conquer amidst one of the most atmospheric backdrops ever put to a video game.
Remaking one of the lesser appreciated entries to the Pokémon juggernaut could have been a risky endeavour, yet with adding all the improvements to the mainline games since to Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire makes even the preserved negatives of the originals seem smaller in hindsight. A worthy choice for people new to the series, yet providing enough new functionality for fans, as well, these jewels are worth preserving.
Although this version of the game changes very little and only really adds in a bit of Nintendo fan service, the quality of the original still shines though in Ace Combat: Assault Horizon Legacy+. A true example of how the 3D effect can enhance games, with both a compelling narrative and gameplay structure, and plenty of reason to take back to the skies after finishing.
The Escapists fills a niche that few developers dare to tread: a strategy title that demands planning and focus, leaving no room for failure and very limited handholding. Such restrictions limit the overall appeal, but those brave enough to venture into Mouldy Toof Studios' and Team17's latest release on PlayStation 4 will find buckets of charm and invention to reward their patience, as well as plenty of value for money.
Developer League of Geeks has succeeded in crafting a solid board game experience in video game form, albeit one that lacks environment diversity and player company. Armello ticks all the right boxes for a keen strategist, and whilst not being the group gathering experience some might hope for, does give a tightly woven system and narrative that is satisfying to conquer.
Fans of CiNG's previous works - such as the Another Code games and the duo of Hotel Dusk / Last Window - will be impressed by the tale told, as well as the audio and visuals found in Chase: Cold Case Investigations, even if only for the short time it lasts. The low price barrier for this Nintendo 3DS eShop release is high incentive for impulse purchasing, though, yet few outside of text adventure enthusiasts will find true value for money in this one.