The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom has lived up to the high expectations created by the success of Breath of the Wild with its exquisitely intertwined gameplay systems, outstanding music, and a legendary story culminating in a magnificent denouement. It's not every day that such a special video game like this comes around. Truly the stuff of legend.
The Internet is brimming with tons of new F-Zero fan content born out of the game's release with musicians covering and remixing sweet tunes, artists drawing their favorite characters and vehicles, and even speedrunners streaming and making videos. While the seeds of an F-Zero revival have been sowed by F-Zero 99, diehard fans know that this may just be the beginning of a new era for our beloved racing game franchise.
At the end of the day, Madden NFL 23 is a poor pro football simulator. It isn't even a fun arcade-style game. It feels somewhat aimless with the development team pulling the game in many different directions at the same time. The changes from Madden NFL 22 are minimal and the PS5/Xbox Series X/S exclusive features still do not address core gameplay problems.
There were several times during my playthrough that something happened to work out and I just laughed. Bugsnax is a game that challenges the player while allowing them to play at their own pace. Young Horses has tapped into the essence of what made their first title Octodad so special with this second game, and the result is a truly emotional ending to the story of the century.
Vicarious Visions has a masterpiece on their hands with Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1+2. They handled the remake of theses games with the right amount of reverance while still leaving their own signature on the work. THPS 1+2 combines awesome gameplay mechanics, impressive graphics, and an outstanding soundtrack in a complete package of skateboarding greatness.
There are not a lot of flaws in Ion Fury, but it is hard to not compare the game to its Build Engine predecessors. The game definitely succeeds in carrying the torch from the Duke series, and little details like ultrawide monitor support and a jazzy soundtrack will go a long way to winning players over.
ToeJam and Earl are definitely back in the groove with this remake, and this game has been welcomed by fans who backed the Kickstarter back in 2015. I certainly wanted to see a more fresh take on these characters, but the game we got will keep fans of the franchise happy while introducing a whole new generation of gamers to the series.
Doom on Switch is a triumph of the human spirit. It is just one more feather in Nintendo's cap as third party developers are flocking to the Switch. Panic Button deserves extremely high praise for this port. It may not be perfect, but Doom on Switch offers players a new way to play one of the finest shooters to come out in recent history.
Madden NFL 18 is one of the best Madden games I have ever played. It's accessible to new players and offers brand new experiences for seasoned video game football vets. There are some years when Madden just doesn't have the right feel, and I usually will be the first to tell folks to hold off on buying the game. But this is not one of those years. 2018 is coming, and Madden is ready to give you hours of awesome gameplay experiences.
Gears of War 4 is a fantastic addition to a great franchise. It introduces characters and paves a runway for future games. The Coalition Studio updated the series with a careful attention to detail that is clearly rooted in a deep respect for the history of the series. Gamers who have never played a Gears of War game will feel just as welcome as players who have logged thousands of hours killing grubs. This is one of the best games to be released this year, without a doubt. While the campaign may have felt a bit short with its abrupt ending, it left me itching for a sequel.