Psychotic’s Colossus Down is a dark, humorous beat ‘em up with great visuals but it may not appeal to everyone. I personally found the dark humor to be enjoyable but if that’s not your thing then I totally understand that. The actual beat ‘em up gameplay isn’t as impactful of say some other recent entries in the genre like Streets of Rage 4 but there is still fun to be had here either playing solo or with a friend locally.
Persona 5 Strikers shakes up the formula a bit but still manages to feel like a full-on sequel to one of this past generations best JRPGS. While it is missing some of the more in-depth social elements that fans of the series love, it still manages to make itself unmissable thanks to another captivating story starring the Phantom Thieves. The characters still get to shine, the combat system smartly borrows some Musou elements while still feeling like Persona, and it’s all just as visually stylish and pleasing to the ears as you would expect. If you call yourself a fan of Persona 5 then you’d be doing yourself a disservice by missing out on Persona 5 Strikers.
Overall, while Habroxia 2 doesn’t do a whole lot to stand out from other shoot ‘em ups it is a solid new choice in the genre. The levels switching between horizontal and vertical help keep you on your toes and a variety of upgrades for your ship will have you testing different loadouts out across the main game, New Game+, and the other modes on offer. If you’re looking for an enjoyable and affordable new shmup for your catalog then Habroxia 2 is a great choice.
Turrican Flashback combines four of Factor 5’s classic Turrican titles together but is missing the features that players have come to expect from retro collections like this. The addition of rewind and save states are welcomed but the package is really let down by a lack of other compelling features and a lack of more games. I would stir on the side of caution for this collection at full price unless you’re just a massive fan of Turrican who is itching to suit back up again immediately.
Control: Ultimate Edition on the new generation of consoles is truly the best way to experience Remedy’s most recent title. The game looks and performs great whether you’re playing it with Ray-Tracing or at a smoother 60 frames-per-second. The massively reduced load times get you into this world faster than ever while things like the PlayStation 5’s 3D Audio, DualSense features, and activities help get you through and feel more immersed in said world. When you combine all of that with a lengthy base game and two great expansions you’ll see why Control was on so many Game of the Year lists in 2019.
MXGP 2020 is improved over the last entry but its first outing on the next generation consoles isn’t as impressive as I would’ve hoped. It looks better, loads faster, and plays smoother than ever before but I think it’s still outclassed in most of those areas as well as in things like its Career mode by some last generation racing games. Dirt bike fans will enjoy the realistic handling model and the DualSense features help to make it a bit more immersive while playing. If you skipped MXGP 19 or are just that hardcore of a fan then this isn’t a bad pick up but it might be worth waiting for MXGP 2021 to see what the franchise can do on the next generation with a bit more time to fine tune it.
Space Invaders Forever offers some good arcade score chasing fun but might not be for every fan out there. For $30 you are getting a really good Space Invaders Extreme game, a fun mobile port, and a multiplayer Space Invaders that you may not have the friends available to play with. I do like that the team elected to go with some lesser known titles in the franchise with this collection but I’m just not sure everyone will enjoy all three games included.
Helheim Hassle is a great time from start to finish despite some issues with the controls and certain gameplay sections. The writing, characters, world, art style, and voice acting are all at a really high level for an independent game and many of the game’s puzzles are enjoyable to figure out and solve. It’s really just the timed sections and the control layout that makes this trip to Helheim a little bit less enjoyable. If you haven’t joined Bjorn and Pesto on their journey yet though I highly recommend doing it in the future as the rest of the game outside of those two things is really good.
Root Double: Before Crime * After Days Xtend Edition is a visual novel that tells a captivating sci-fi story with lots of mystery and intrigue. Despite some pacing issues and uninteresting sections, I still found myself playing all of the routes through to see what was going on and how the story would end. I like the idea of the SSS system but I think more can be done to make it stand apart more from the typical visual novel choice system.
Spirit of the North: Enhanced Edition is a short adventure game that does a great job of telling an emotional tale without words thanks to some great visual and audio design. The game doesn’t offer much to those who already played it though so unless you really want to play with a couple new skins and better visuals and performance you may want to pass on it. Those who have yet to play it and are looking for a more tranquil experience will likely enjoy exploring these beautiful vistas as a fox for the few hours that it lasts.