Chronos: Before the Ashes is a calming, serene, yet challenging game that is perfect for gamers who want to try skill-based combat but aren’t ready for classic entries to the genre, like the Souls games. It’s connections to Remnant: From the Ashes are abundant enough to make fans of the game see them with glee, but not so important to make it a necessity. The level design and art style is simple yet beautiful, and the controls are satisfying and tight.
While it seems strange at first, Phantom: Covert Ops has been one of my best experiences with VR to date. Despite playing the entire game from within a kayak and a formulaic narrative, the meat of the game comes from its impeccable mechanics and immersion.
The Outer Worlds: Peril on Gorgon is full of just as much wonderful space-western dialogue as the base game. It’s gritty, suspenseful, intense, and dark. New characters like Clarence Mostly and Minnie Ambrose are engaging, the kind of people we want to really dive further into. Gorgon itself is beautiful in its desolation and it really is an absolute joy to come back to the Halcyon system.
West of Dead offers a satisfying blend of tactics and rogue-like gameplay that I didn’t expect. Levels offer plenty of options for how you want to approach a situation, the gunplay is fast and precise, and the execution of creating a wild west style shoot out is perfect. The game is dripping with personality and Ron Perlman delivers each word with purpose and meaning. Every aspect of gameplay and aesthetic is tailored to telling the story of Mason in a way that feels natural and unique. It’s a blast to play over and over again despite issues with the geometry interfering with aiming and dodging not quite feeling as useful as it ought to.
After all these years, BioShock: The Collection has easily stood the test of time, and bringing it to the Switch seven years after the launch of BioShock Infinite gives new gamers a chance to experience an iconic and groundbreaking series that will remind people to be polite and always preface a request with the simple phrase “Would you kindly?”
Mortal Kombat 11: Aftermath gives you exactly what you want out of an expansion pack: new characters, a new story, new gameplay features, and it throws in a couple of new skins for Scorpion, Sub-Zero, and Frost. As a package deal, if you loved Mortal Kombat 11, then Aftermath is an absolute must. It embodies what any expansion or DLC should always do: it adds and enhances the game without diluting or changing the original image. Aftermath adds fresh life (and blood) to the game and revitalizes that urge to hear the iconic words: Finish Him!
In an era of remakes and remasters, bringing a new entry to a long dormant series is a bold and difficult thing to do. Streets of Rage 4 adds modern stylings to its classic aesthetic and gameplay to create a modern mash-up that is hard to put down.