For all of its speed, channelled from FPS games of the distant past, Tower Of Guns encourages thoughtful play. Despite the randomisation of enemies, pick-ups and areas, every distinct element that can appear is a known quantity, and that means the risks and possibilities are always obvious. But no matter how much experience you have, if you can't think fast enough – and, no insult intended, you probably can't – you'll still struggle to survive.
Through it all, I laughed, I cried and I savoured the tension. At one point I paused the game and shook my head in frustration, faced with too much bad behaviour in too short a time, but I'm hooked and excited to see what comes next. Episode one ended with an ill-advised bang but episode two continues with a whimper. And that's as it should be.
It feels good to finish on a complaint. When I was writing about Path Of Exile a few days ago, I felt a bit mean finishing on a sour note, but The Hobbit left me feeling a bit grumpy. Admittedly, burning through a Lego game as quickly as possible isn't the best way to play, and I'd probably feel more fondly toward this one if I'd dipped in and out over a period of weeks.
For those willing to invest time into the New Game +, into the covenants and the raiding of other players' worlds, there's far more to uncover than I'll probably ever see. As I said at the beginning, Dark Souls II is a very good game. These have been some of the reasons why as well as some of the reasons why I don't think it's quite as great a game as I'd hoped it would be.
The Walking Dead explores survival and suffering to great effect, and it continues to do so here. It's disappointing, however, that when the setup created an opportunity to explore a society built among and upon that suffering, the game failed to scratch beneath the surface.
My own love affair with baseball started with the book Moneyball and Out Of The Park was the next step, long before I grew attached to a team and lost the months from April onwards to late night live broadcasts from distant timezones.