Cody Gravelle


119 games reviewed
79.6 average score
80 median score
78.8% of games recommended
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Sep 7, 2022

Splatoon 3 is consistently flashy and fun, and absent major innovation, it still feels fresh.

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Ultimately, SD Gundam Battle Alliance feels like the sort of game that will appeal to those who haven't picked up a Gundam game in a few years, but it's not going to move the needle for anyone else. Standard and unexciting combat is combined with some strange meta-narrative decisions that make this feel like a cute spin on some of the series' most iconic moments. The RPG elements of the game are also very limited, which means arcade-style fighters like Gundam Extreme Versus Maxiboost ON offers more exciting action. SD Gundam Battle Alliance is solid and will definitely be a hit with dedicated Gundam fans, but it's definitely not a reason to dive into the property for those who haven't done so before.

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Aug 22, 2022

Overall, Across the Obelisk is a fun deckbuilding roguelite that doesn't measure up to the genre's greats. Its innovations aren't really that interesting and the rest is pretty standard, which isn't a knock against the game, since it executes on that vanilla approach well. It does mean that Across the Obelisk is less likely to suck players into dozens of hours of playthroughs, but it's worth a try for fans of the deckbuilding roguelite genre.

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Aug 18, 2022

Soul Hackers 2 is at different times a superb, a good, and a middling game. Underneath it all is some serious promise.

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Jul 26, 2022

Xenoblade Chronicles 3 collects, iterates, and perfects JRPG mechanics.

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Jun 21, 2022

The collection's biggest strength, and the games' best selling points individually, all boil down to their wonderful cyberpunk storytelling. There isn't a weak link among the three, with each story feeling relevant today. The exploration of hopelessness in the face of technological power or the inequality among people born into different circumstances can, at times, be brutal, but Shadowrun is largely about those without agency reclaiming it for themselves and others - an inspirational story, especially now. For that reason alone, the games are well-worth engaging in - but the tactical combat is still a draw too, scratching the itch for challenging content with plenty of rewarding eureka moments for those willing to spend time within them. Shadowrun Trilogy: Console Edition is a worthy port and a thought-provoking collection, making it a high recommendation even in 2022.

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While anyone who enjoys mystery games, visual novels, or the often bizarre story-telling quirks of Spike Chunsoft games will find a lot to love in AI: The Somnium Files - nirvanA Initiative, it's really a game that shouldn't be missed by anyone. A combination of maddening puzzles with satisfying solutions, a story that is as weird as it is excellent, and characters who make memorable impressions sees nirvanA Initiative establish itself as a worthy sequel to one of the better sleeper hits of the past several years. AI: The Somnium Files - nirvanA Initiative works very hard to keep your eyes focused on it at all times, and the reward is a rollercoaster ride that's superb from start to finish.

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Mario Strikers: Battle League is a fun and colorful game that lacks some of the depth players might expect, and strays pretty far from soccer.

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Apr 27, 2022

Ultimately, however, Nintendo Switch Sports thrives in its gameplay, which is captivating despite its simplicity and remains a huge selling point for anyone interested in the title. It's easy to lose hours of a night to burgeoning competitive rivalries among friends in one specific game, and the motion controls get people active enough that it feels like a productive use of time on top of the entertainment. There's some valid criticisms to be made over the shallow game roster and even shallower character customization, but at its core, Nintendo Switch Sports is an absolute blast and is simple enough for anyone who wants to give it a try.

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Ultimately, 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim remains largely unchanged on Nintendo Switch minus the platform's strengths and weaknesses that exist independent of title. That's for the best, as 13 Sentinels remains one of the most intriguing releases in recent years and a game that's been slept on by a large number of people turned off by its anime or mecha-inspired origins. Underneath that coat is a resonant tale spanning generations and dealing with some interesting, innovative subject matter - and 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim comes highly recommended to anyone as a result.

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Actually deciding whether or not Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition is worth it varies wildly depending on what a given consumer is looking for. As a remaster, it falls short of the high bar some other projects over the last few years have managed to meet. As a gaming experience absent its new bells and whistles, Chrono Cross remains a stunning title that still captivates as a JRPG over two decades since its release, while The Radical Dreamers remains an oddball text adventure that few but the most dedicated lore enthusiasts will find appealing. As a preservation project, Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition is all but necessary. What players choose to do with that information is up to them.

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Kirby and the Forgotten Land is an excellent marriage between gameplay innovation and accessibility.

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Feb 16, 2022

Overall, Monark is a perfectly functional JRPG with a great combat system, some strong aesthetic designs, and a decent story. It's held back a bit by its school setting and a lack of exposition early, and could have benefited from embracing its darker themes more readily to help establish stakes in the opening chapters. Still, what's here is a fun game with an addictive combat system, and lessons learned in Monark could make the next effort from FURYU Corporation even more appealing.

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Anyone who liked Voice of Cards: The Isle Dragon Roars will similarly find much to enjoy in Forsaken Maiden. Those who felt that Isle Dragon Roars was a little too monotonous in its early-going should still attempt Forsaken Maiden, since its biggest strength is a streamlined approach to the game's major selling points. Voice of Cards: The Forsaken Maiden is a lovely second proof-of-concept for what is an excellent gameplay design approach, and hopefully it inspires some similar risk-taking in other JRPG designs in the future.

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Feb 4, 2022

The foundation for an incredible online card game is very much present in Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel. There's all the tools here for the next online TCG sensation, and its free-to-play friendly beginnings coupled with smooth UI make it quite watchable from a viewership perspective. If Konami sinks more content into ranked play and maintains a steady schedule of single-player releases and game modes over the next year or two, Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel could become the top-tier online representation of tabletop card game experiences - something that would've been absurd to suggest after lengthy head starts by Magic Arena, Hearthstone, and others.

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Nov 4, 2021

Shin Megami Tensei V revels in JRPG traditions and, while it does mark a leap forward for the franchise, its excellence is at odds with its approach.

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While Voice of Cards does stumble in spots, it shines as a brilliantly told story that successfully replicates the feeling of the best tabletop gaming sessions, with a game master whose engaging voice carries much of the emotion and tension required to make the setup work. While it certainly won't be for everyone, Voice of Cards: The Isle Dragon Roars is a beautiful title well worth a look from any roleplaying fan, and an example of how excellent design can breathe life into any game with enough to say about its world and its heroes.

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Oct 6, 2021

Metroid Dread is an instant classic. Its seamless blend of exploration, combat, puzzle-solving, and light touches of story creates one of the most engaging experiences on Nintendo Switch.

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Sep 27, 2021

For those who haven't picked up a FIFA title in a few years, however, this is certainly the best time to jump back into the franchise, with a skew towards offensive soccer minds that will no doubt result in quicker pacing, attractive games, and a strong pick-up-and-play appeal for those just looking to play some soccer here and there.

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Sep 16, 2021

Lost Judgment is nothing short of stunning. It's tightly-packed narrative never fails to enthrall, while its gameplay systems make navigating to each of its engrossing narrative beats an exciting experience in its own right. While Judgment felt a bit more like a proof of concept for how a Yakuza spin-off could be done, its sequel is evidence there needs to be more. Lost Judgment is a defining release from Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio, one of 2021's best games, and the rare sequel that preserves its series' identity while improving on nearly every element of its predecessor.

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