- Fallout 3
- Mass Effect
Use Your Words is the latest in Xbox One party games, but it is by no means the best. Its lack of variety makes the experience repetitive and boring after only a few games. Furthermore, while Use Your Words is priced cheaper than other party games on Xbox Live, its competitors have greater variety, depth, and replay value.
Bulletstorm is still as good as it ever was. It's fast, fluid, highly vulgar, and incredibly addictive. In a world of hyper-serious shooters, Bulletstorm stands out as an oasis of non-serious fun and is head-and-shoulders above its competition... Duke included. Fans of shooters who missed out in 2011 are highly encouraged to pick up this remaster as it is going to be the best way to play through the exploits of Grayson, Ishi, and Trishka. That being said, if you've already played the original and aren't aching to be knee deep in viscera and vulgarity, there's not a lot here to encourage a second go, especially at the current price point.
With throwback games being all the rage in independent development, many developers have chosen to go the 8/16-bit, pixelated, "ain't this cute?" route to tap into nostalgia while bringing along more modern systems and mechanics. Chime Sharp goes the opposite route; it may look like a modern game, but it feels like an older game in the best ways possible. With its highly accessible gameplay style and a difficult-to-master level of play, Chime Sharp is an easy endorsement for virtually all gamers.
Slain ticks off the boxes as a serviceable homage to old school action-platformers. It has relatively tight controls and gameplay and has that 80's/90's difficulty that will make elder millennials jaunt down memory lane. The lack of depth and unreliable technical aspects limit Slain's fun factor, while the writing aims to be both cheesy and Gothic, but cannot serve both masters and ultimately fails. Finally, the achievements... ugh... just don't go there. If you're aching for a throwback to Belmont's heyday and don't care about your achievement ratio, give Slain a shot, but otherwise, give it a pass and catch some z's.
Much like "The Taken King" before it, avid fans of Destiny are already playing "Rise of Iron" and enjoying the new content. If you're one of the few shooter fans who hasn't tried Destiny yet, the value added by "Rise of Iron" makes the new Destiny - The Collection an easy recommendation as well. Those things being said, "Rise of Iron" feels thin in content and quality, especially when compared to last year's "The Taken King".
Dear Esther is a boring slog with little narrative payoff. Although it does encourage an ideal of "interpret as you will", it lacks the foundation and support to drive discussions of death, life, and grief to the point to which it strives. Fortunately, the experience is short, cheap, and a good boost to an achievement score, but beyond that, is worth a pass.
Lovely Planet is a throwback to the 80s/90s when games were a test of skill, patience, and determination. That being said, its bare bones design and technical and design hiccups make it all the more frustrating. If you're in search of a game to play "pass the controller" with in a group of shooter-loving friends, Lovely Planet may be worth checking out, but is otherwise easily worth a pass.
At this juncture, we know what to expect out of a Telltale experience: less-than-solid gameplay that is balanced out by an amazing story. That being said, Game of Thrones, while a solid Telltale experience, has limited appeal. The Venn diagram of interest is flatly composed of people who love Game of Thrones with people who like/tolerate Telltale's experiences. If you love Game of Thrones and enjoy Telltale's previous offerings, you shouldn't hesitate to pick up the game. If you're someone who loves Westeros but dislikes Telltale's style, you might want to give the game a shot, if only to get another hit of Thrones before you find out what really happened to Jon Snow. On the other hand, if you don't know a Crow from a raven, you should probably give it a pass.