Coming from the developers of Trine I expected a little more quality from Shadwen, the uninteresting environments echo the bland characters and gameplay that evolves too slowly. A level editor and mod support will give it some longevity and you might find some enjoyment from making a purely non-violent run through the game. But even the extra items couldn’t spice it up enough for me to find Shadwen anything other than a passing curio.
The campaign is great and if you allow the game to punish you for defeat it’ll bring more impact and consequence to the later battles. Sure, the story is ridiculous but it’s what you’d expect of a 40K and it fits the genre perfectly. With a multiplayer that has as much nuance and depth as each ship you can manage, Armada is well worth your time if you’re a fan of the 40K universe. For the Emperor!
Despite its issues I still feel Kholat is a genuinely disturbing experience, full of atmosphere, tension and visually impressive for an Unreal Engine 4 game. Its faults take it out of the really awesome category but I personally loved it and how it blended horror with unravelling parts of a real world mystery. As it is I believe Kholat is still worth playing but just be aware that frustration and tension will be present in equal measure.
The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing 3 is a good-looking game but the lack of features from the previous entries are a sore point. Allocating skills and levelling up are hindered by a very cluttered UI that would put any newcomer off and the range of classes feels a little false given how similar some are to each other.
Order of Battle: Pacific doesn't exactly shake up the strategy genre, but its focus on the Pacific theatre is a welcome one and I thoroughly enjoyed my time with it. A few neat features and the accessible nature of the game mean it's open for newcomers to the genre but also challenging enough for veterans.
I'm pretty sure this won't appeal to a lot of people. It can be bone-crushingly hard at times and difficult to get into. But by giving you the tools to craft your own escape and leaving you alone to sort it out, The Escapists is one of those classic hands-off games that encourages you to create your own story and incredible moments.
Coming so soon after the first entry Blackguards 2 is a surprisingly packed improvement over the original, giving you the chance to dominate and rule over South Aventuria with all the bitterness and rage such a task would need. It won't suit all newcomers to PC TRPGs and yes, battles can be brutal and unforgiving at times, but for those with even the slightest bent towards getting knee deep in stats and tactical battles then Blackguards 2 is a worthy purchase.