Pacer is definitely a match for Wipeout in so many ways. The gameplay is fantastic and the sense of motion you get from the smooth anti-gravity racing feels very satisfying. The customisation options allow you to personalise your ships and create loadouts which are both the best and worst part of the game for me. I love the option to design the ship I want and being able to chop and change on the fly, but locking out all the upgrades makes the game too much of a grind for me. If you’re a fan of other high-speed racers I genuinely can’t recommend this enough. There’s enough content to keep you going for ages and it definitely lives up to the inspiration of Wipeout. If I had to call a winner, it’d be a photo finish, so just play both of them if you can.
Hellpoint is far from a bad game. In fact, it more than holds its own in the genre and gripped me a lot better than Demon’s Souls (PS3) did when I started playing that. It does the important parts extremely well and despite not being as pretty or as popular as other games out there, it’s a really solid entry. The platforming required adds unnecessary difficulty but the combat, the co-op, story and bosses are all brilliantly implimented. The story is slowly drip-fed, making it not the easiest to follow, but there’s enough there for you to eventually make sense of it – more so than Bloodborne, in my experience anyway. The addition of the timed features in the game is an interesting addition to the genre and one that I think should be used more in the future.
Cuphead is a game that really should be played by everyone. If you’re someone who likes to work hard to improve at a game, like Crash Bandicoot, for example, this game is definitely for you. If you’re also someone who just likes shooting stuff in the face while enjoying a boppy soundtrack and appreciating some fine art, it’s also for you. Cuphead really is a masterpiece of simplistic game design. I’m not the most patient person in the world but this game just grabs you and releases a hidden determination to beat its challenges and I had an absolute blast while doing it.
New battle royale games seem to be coming out every week – just this past month we’ve also had Hyperspace. That being said, Spellbreak is the most fun I’ve had in the genre since I first tried Fortnite. It still has a long way to go to prove itself as the best BR out there, but I think it’s starting out as the strongest one on day one so far. Its gameplay is fast and fun, the team-based attacks and gauntlet system are innovative and satisfying, and the class systems add a ton of reasons to replay and practice. It’s a really solid game that feels it’s at its absolute best when playing as a team, which isn’t always the case when it comes to BRs. Spellbreak does enough to truly stand out in the genre and is probably my favourite battle royale out there right now. Go give it a play, who knows, it might just be the refresh in the genre you’ve been looking for.
Maid of Sker scratched my horror itch for the year so far for sure. Despite some of my criticisms, it’s not a bad game, far from it. It’s just let down by a very few glaring issues that stop it from being a truly great game. I still really enjoyed my time with it, mainly due to its incredible setting and references to folklore. The story progresses in a very natural way and feels just about the right length at around four hours. The Quiet Ones are an interesting enemy type and their presence in the game is explained brilliantly through the excellent world-building that’s throughout the floors of the hotel. The only problem is that the story of them limits the gameplay experience somewhat to a repetitive sneaking trial and error game and that can get very frustrating, especially when it’s let down by strange AI problems. The puzzles in the game are very fun to work out and feel just as fun to do as the puzzles in a Resident Evil or Silent Hill game. The visuals and sound design are really quite something and lift the experience somewhat, which tells me that there’s potential for a fantastic horror experience to come from Wales Interactive.
Radio Squid is a game with conflicting ideas that makes it partially enjoyable but equally just as frustrating. The bomb power is useful and a feature that feels fair and challenging whereas the ability to hurt yourself just feels the opposite. The claustrophobic arenas make the trek to reach the note to start your attack all the more pointlessly dangerous, meaning you will likely take cheap hits before you even start attacking yourself. Then, the wall wraps mean you have way too many things to keep track of, including your own projectiles. It all adds up to an experience that feels unfair and a bit bland.
I had high expectations for the Final Fantasy VII Remake due to the hype around the game when it was first revealed. I’m happy to say that my expectations were met and then some. I loved every second I had with this game (niggles aside) and was engrossed in its world and its story. The characters are a joy to spend time with and I was with them every step of the way. There were twists I didn’t expect and moments that just had me smiling more than I had in a game for years. As someone who hasn’t played the original, I’m not sure how the Final Fantasy VII fans will feel about its changed story, or how different it plays, but to anyone who is looking for a great JRPG to play then look no further than this.
Totally Reliable Delivery Service is truly an enigma, what makes it so brilliant is what also makes it so damn frustrating. I would recommend the experience to all of my friends, as I really did experience laughs that I’ve never had before, but due to the frustration it caused me, I wouldn’t wish the game on someone I mildly dislike. The way to obtain the most fun is to simply mess around with other people and experiment with new and unique ways to deliver the packages, I definitely didn’t have the patience to be the postman it wanted me to be.
Let’s sing 2020 is a fun party game and one we definitely need in these darkest of times. Stay home and spread some joy, instead of the virus, by singing to your heart’s content with your family. It’s super easy to get into, there’s a variety of ways to play, and there’s a pretty decent mix of songs for the average person who doesn’t listen to weird stuff like me. Subjectively, this isn’t a game for myself but I can also objectively see why it will have massive appeal. Playing solo is only half the fun, get everyone involved and I guarantee you will have a good time.
Q-YO Blaster is a very fun little shmup that I’ve put a lot more time into than I thought I would. It’s addictive and pretty, even if it’s clearly copied a bit too much from Cuphead. The “story” is a little baffling in its execution but in the grand scheme of things, it doesn’t matter as I doubt you’ll be playing it for a deep and enthralling narrative. The gameplay was tight and enjoyable, with some nice little nuances which are all that matters in this genre really. Also, I was impressed with the fact there’s a lot of characters, powers and replayability, all for the low price of £8.99 on the Nintendo eShop – you can’t fault it for the amount of entertainment you get.