- Suikoden 3
- Counter-Strike: Source
- Ultima Online
Developers Dotemu and Tribute Games served up a most excellent pizza for everyone of all skill sets and ages to enjoy. The combat is fluid, fast-paced, and really a bodacious time full of combos. Characters' move sets were handled excellently, the sound work is top notch (that opening number!), and the levels are crafted to perfection. There really isn't a lot to nitpick with this game, as what these developers have delivered is a masterclass of nostalgia and new-age delight.
There is a lot of love with Soundfall. The music never fails to suck you in to each leve,l and the story and characters are cute. However it’s not all solos and encores, as the level design is rather bland and repetitive and the multiplayer leaves a lot to be desired. If you are in the mood for a dungeon crawler with a nice twist, you have a gem in Soundfall. Just don’t go expecting an overly deep loot system or anything too complex. It’s a rather straight forward game that’s all about getting lost in the sounds, which honestly can be rather nice to do.
Eiyuden Chronicle: Rising is a good game that introduces you to a bright and colorful cast of characters and the world they inhabit. It’s short and sweet, with the main story missions costing me 10 hours, but it leaves just enough of an impression without overstaying its welcome. I do worry that it’s releasing a bit too early compared to the main entry and with a game focused around questing, it’s so disappointing how badly the questing system and UI is setup. There is also a lot of needless backtracking that could have been avoided. All that being said, it’s a good start and for those Suikoden fans out there, it brings out a lot of nostalgia and moments that feel like Suikoden. Great start from Rabbit & Bear, we can’t wait to see what’s next.
Nobody Saves the World is yet another in a growing list of strong titles from developer Drinkbox Studios. From the world design and characters, to the sounds and combat, there aren’t that many hairs out of place. It’s not perfect by any means. Local co-op is great and works wonderfully, but online is severely limited, with friend to friend being the only option. If you are looking for a good dungeon crawler with flair, then you really can’t go wrong with Nobody Saves the World.
LEGO Stars Wars: The Skywalker Saga does a great job of giving everyone the LEGO world they love, with some nice tweaks to the formula that’s been in place for a while. It’s not a perfect game of course, with some camera and AI issues, along with signature TT Games glitches that plague parts of the game. However it’s still a good game and one of the best LEGO games to date. Perfect for kids and adults alike, there is something here for everyone and enough to keep you around for a while, especially if you want to collect everything. LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga is a great first build on the PlayStation 5.
Ghostwire: Tokyo is the game I think we were all hoping for when it was announced. The eerie streets of an empty Tokyo draw you in and promptly scare you senseless with some fascinating enemies lurking around every corner. The story shines exactly when it needs to and then fades into the backdrop, allowing you to experience this sensational world. From the incredible voice work and writing, to the well-paced combat and city exploration, this is a must-play experience with plenty to do across its 20 hours.
At the end of the day, Edge of Eternity just sort of is. There is nothing really memorable here, just a bunch of ideas that don’t really deliver much of a kick. The UI is just disastrous, turning any task into a kick in the privates and the combat is just flat, with nothing really exciting about it. The basic premise of the story is strong enough and the characters aren’t horrible, but the dialogue felt rushed far too often. Edge of Eternity as a game is something that I played, but I can’t say I really enjoyed much of it. It’s a big world sure, but there is not a lot to fill it up, leaving a lot of empty space. It’s not the worst game out there and that’s really the best you can say about it.
At the end of the day, whether you played the first or not, Mushroom Wars 2 is an enjoyable RTS that is accessible to all and a cracking bit of fun to play. Multiplayer, whether local or online is a special kind of quick-paced, slap you in the face fun that balances things out in a very nice manner. Great game to pick up in short spurts, as it doesn’t have the depth to keep you invested for too long at a time. Well worth picking up if you are in the mood for some fun.
Overall, Super Animal Royale doesn’t really do anything groundbreaking, but it is still a fresh entry into the battle royale genre with its cute animal theme and the ability to quickly get into games without much waiting around. Cross play adds a lot of possible players to the pool and what’s here in the package works and it’s fun to play. The game does just enough to keep you coming back for more without being such a huge time commitment.
There really isn't a lot that Persona 5 Strikers does wrong. The combat is rewarding, the story is interesting, and the characters/setting are fleshed out, all with a good soundtrack. It's by no means a perfect game, but what is wrong really isn't anything that impacts the wider experience. This game did such a great job with something new, blending in a few different game types, that now I really wish Persona 3 and 4 had done the same thing. Those who enjoyed Persona 5 will love getting the band back together for another adventure with a new gameplay style, falling in love all over again. For those new to the series, you won't feel like you missed a beat at all.
Developer Soleil should be commended for giving players a fun world to create their ultimate ninja and then try out your best moves on people. The combat doesn't flow as nice as earlier games developed by CyberConnect2, but it's satisfying to run up a wall, jump off, and pull off a ninjustu mid-air. While that feeling is great, there is not enough built up around it to keep you engaged and feeling like a part of the ninja world. There were options out there to make the game a living, breathing, ninja brawler with some character, but those must have failed the Chuunin exam. Naruto to Boruto: Shinobi Striker is a good start and will provide you with a good time, just don't be surprised if you find yourself growing tired of the rinse and repeat of VR missions and PVP.
After being such a fan of the anime, I really wanted to fall in love with The Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia. I was really hoping to see the same treatment given to Naruto or Attack on Titan, where the game really brings to life the anime in a fun, challenging, and engaging way. What was released sadly, was a game with some interesting ideas that failed to fully deliver on any of them. The game isn't terrible by any means, with some fans of the show sure to enjoy reliving Elizabeth's quest, but there is too much wasted potential here. If you don't mind the obvious lack of depth here, you can have some fun playing the game, just don't expect that fun to last.
If you are looking for a game you can pick up and put down in short spurts, then Tokyo Tattoo Girls might just be perfect for you. There is a good strategy system to be found here, just really nothing else. The story is almost nonexistent and there really aren't enough options here to build upon the strategy, or give you something to break it up a bit. If you are OK with the lack of options and just want to take over Tokyo and look at some nicely detailed tattoos, then Tokyo Tattoo Girls should be on your radar. Just don't expect much more outside of that, because there isn't anything.
Summon Night 6: Lost Borders really surprised me. I can honestly say I am not usually a fan of visual novels, but this one to me never felt like one. This is a colorful and fun VSRPG (I think that works!) with loads of enjoyable characters, an interesting story, and a fluid combat system. While the game might have a bit too much extra dialogue, the story itself is full of charm, doing a great job of keeping you engaged. The combat flows along at a brisk pace, never feeling like you are on the battle field for too long, but not feeling rushed either. The ability to carry your progress between PlayStation 4 and Vita is a welcome addition, with the game looking and playing great both across both platforms. Gaijinworks should be commended for a great job in localization, and Western gamers should hope that this series continues to make its way out of Japan.
NHL 16 is a huge step towards restoring faith in EA Canada and EA Sports. The game saw huge improvements across the board, with Be a Pro, Be a GM, and EASHL all being better entries than in previous years. It's not without its issue, as menu and online play lag is somewhat frequent and the added practice mode could use so much more attention, but the product is as crisp as they come. NHL is back with a vengeance and NHL 16 is one hockey game that you can't afford to pass up.
It's hard to recommend Final Fantasy Type-0 HD at full price because it feels like a $60 PS Vita title. The game really shouldn't have released on a home console, as it makes a clunky transition from the PSP to next-gen and lacks the polish you would expect from a console release. That said, this is still a really good Vita game (Haha! BURN!!) that features a well designed and addictive combat system, with a story and characters that will keep you engaged. Seriously, this is one of the better combat systems in a JRPG that I have played. If you can get over the price tag and its obvious console shortcomings, you will find a game that is well worth the experience, XV demo or not.
With all the bad I have said, there is an audience out there somewhere for Natural Doctrine. If you enjoy mindless hours of grinding with no clear goal or instruction, and if you enjoy hour long battles on the "easiest" difficulty setting where you still feel underleveled no matter how much you grind, then this game could be right up your alley. The system is there to try and be a good game, but it is given no chance to shine and no clear direction on what to do, leaving you with a mess of missed opportunities and frustration.
As someone who plays every NHL yearly release all year long, it is unfortunate to see just how badly this has gone. I can somewhat understand taking out 6v6 online play if it wasn't ready, but taking out features in Be a GM or making Be a Pro completely unplayable is just ridiculous. If you are not a hockey fan at all but you want to slap around a few pucks, this might be the game for you. However, with all the lost features and left out modes, NHL fans might want to wait until everything is patched in to jump on this ship. EA Sports: it's in the game… eventually.
For a game that I knew nothing about until maybe a few days before release, The Last Tinker: City of Colors really did surprise and impress me, even with some of it's hiccups. What you have is a colorful and vibrant world full of cute inhabitants, quirky moments, and a great done soundtrack that do enough to keep you interested. This is the perfect example of a game that you could called a jack of all trades but a master of none. The combat, platforming, and puzzle solving are all serviceable game play elements that function well without being spectacular. Each section is just good enough. With over 10+ hours of game play, it is longer than I expected but has almost zero replay value to speak of. The Last Tinker: City of Colors is a throw back game that provides gamers with a simple approach to fun and it works.