Perhaps the only good thing that can be said about Dying: Reborn is that you can easily get a Platinum trophy from it, provided you only backtrack after finishing the game. It's faster if you use a guide for the more obtuse puzzles, but the whole endeavor takes only a few hours to accomplish. If you aren't into Trophy hunting, however, there's nothing of value in this title. Poor puzzles that repeat often, dodgy presentation with worse audio, and a story with too many plot holes are all wrapped up with a price tag that's too expensive for what you're getting. On a system that already has plenty of good horror games, there should be no reason for anyone to pick up Dying: Reborn.
Zombeer is bad. The humor is scattershot and groan-inducing, while the gameplay is barely functional. The graphics spend too much time on useless animations and not enough on anything useful, while the sound is awful except for parts of the soundtrack. The short play time is the only positive thing about the game, but even that isn't enough to recommend the title to anyone.
From top to bottom, Fluster Cluck is dreadful. The gameplay is basic, but the uninspired map designs, weak weaponry, and confusing scoring system ruin the fun. The campaign feels like it drags along despite being so short, but the dependence on grinding to open up more levels is infuriating. Multiplayer makes things a little better, but the paltry map selection and pittance of modes saps away that fun rather quickly. The lack of online multiplayer cripples the potential audience even more. Even the presentation is weak enough to give the player the impression that this title was done as quickly as possible with no regard for quality. As it stands, Fluster Cluck is up (down?) there with Basement Crawl as one of the worst multiplayer console experiences to date. There is absolutely no reason to grab this one, especially at its rather high price point.
The premise for Ian's Eyes has potential. If done correctly, a horror game that revolves around a glorified escort mission can be a tense and entertaining experience. However, there's nothing here that can be considered well done, as the game simply strives to emulate all of the bad parts of the old survival-horror games without the good parts with that came with it. Even if you're a die-hard survival-horror fan, there's very little that's worth checking out in Ian's Eyes.
Unfortunately, Coffin Dodgers is a mess. It squanders its interesting premise, and races are plagued with poor track design, ineffective weaponry, and a lack of meaningful content. The multiplayer fares about as badly as the solo game, making it a blessing that this isn't online, and the constant frame rate issues sap any potential fun from the title. Unless you're willing to pay for a quick boost to your Trophy count, there's no reason to touch this title.
Zamarian gets some kudos for trying to use the tube format since it's still a rarity in the genre. Other than that, it doesn't do anything all that well. The controls are too squirrely to make you feel like you have any mastery over them, and the game doesn't break away from its mobile roots to embrace the advantages of the more versatile platform. The shooting feels uninspired until you reach the boss fights, which can be more of a confusing mess than something enjoyable. With an all-around mediocre presentation, Zamarian's only real saving grace is the $4.99 price tag. Even then, it's difficult to recommend this title unless you're desperate for a slightly different kind of shooter.
In the end, Slain! is very much a game that employs style over substance. It gets the look down, and the music fits in nicely. While the platforming is passable, the combat feels half-baked. Combine that with a myriad of bugs both big and small, and the game disappoints all around. While the hope is that the developers get some patches in soon to improve things, it's very difficult to recommend Slain! in its current state to anyone when there are plenty of better alternatives.
L.A. Cops is a sloppy game. The controls lack finesse in almost all areas, and the shooting is randomized enough to feel unsatisfying. The AI is a joke on both sides, so the strategic aspect of the game is a moot point. The theme feels wasted, and the graphical flourishes that were intended to make the game feel lively end up being distracting instead. The sound is the only saving grace, and even then, you may tire of it due to the amount of times you'll need to replay levels — and not by choice. Unless it receives an influx of patches to fix a bevy of issues, there's little reason to check out this title.
There's a germ of a good idea in RWBY: Grimm Eclipse. The counter system alone makes this button-masher feel more refined. However, the rest of it — the presentation, the actual gameplay, and the lack of story — does such a terrible job at supporting this system that the overall game feels unfinished. Only a handful of fans may be fine with the title, but everyone else can easily ignore this offering.
In the end, Trials of the Blood Dragon is a mess. The platforming is barely passable, and several mechanics feel terrible to use. The biking portions work, but the change in physics systems messes things up just as the game becomes tougher. The presentation is lackluster, and the story tries too hard to top the original game but doesn't manage to achieve the same level of charm. It can be finished off in a relatively short amount of time, but fans of either franchise won't want to bother. Unless you're insanely curious, Trials of the Blood Dragon is best left alone.
Dinox is as basic of a trivia game as you can get. Aside from the "Walking with Dinosaurs" clips that are thrown around before every question, there's no real flash to get those who aren't particularly interested or versed in the subject matter to give the game a shot. The difficulty levels seem to have no bearing on the questions, and neither do the video clips. It's an inexpensive game at $5, but unless you are a real big dinosaur fan, it's easy to skip it.
Light is a decent demonstration of stealth done on a smaller scale. The minimalist approach is novel, and the bare-bones stealth mechanic can be refreshing to those entering the genre for the first time. However, those who are more familiar with stealth titles will find the mechanics to be too simple, and the brevity of the entire game makes the $12.99 price tag seem absurd, especially when the levels and item locations are static. If the developer's promise of adding more levels for free pans out and there's a plethora to choose from, then it could be worth it. As it stands now, Light is a very hard game to recommend.
Of the three released DLC packs so far, Chaos Rising is the worst of them. The whole campaign and a good chunk of the side missions are composed of fetch quests, and their tedium is highlighted by a mission where you do nothing but wait until a certain amount of time has passed before you can continue with the rest of the game. The boss fights are a nice touch, but with attack patterns reminiscent of some fights in the core game, the novelty quickly wears off. The weapons are nice, and the new vehicle is a blast to ride. As part of the Season Pass, this pack only reinforces one's buyer's remorse. As a stand-alone piece of DLC, Chaos Rising isn't worth the bother.
If anything, NBA Live 14 helps prove that the NBA 2K series will be the reigning king of video game basketball simulations for years to come. Some decent game mechanics are ruined by very poor AI that has little to no idea of what to do most of the time. The audio is poorly put together, and the visuals are decent for the middle of the current generation, not at the beginning of a new one. The ESPN license feels largely wasted in the bare-bones presentation. A few modes are too tedious to be fun. There are some good ideas and modes here, but with so many issues plaguing it and few players online in the first few weeks, the whole effort seems pointless. With any luck, the plan for EA is to learn from this and deliver a worthy product next year. Unless you need every game on your chosen platform, just pick up NBA 2K14 for your hoops fix this year, and don't look back.
From top to bottom, Daylight falls short of being a good horror game. The gameplay is bare bones, and the attempts at scaring you fall into so many clichés that they're boring. It also becomes downright laughable once you discover how you can safely avoid combat with the main villain in a ridiculous manner. The story makes no sense, and it doesn't get any better after multiple playthroughs. Only the presentation can be called decent, and even that is questionable at times. Even if one were to consider this just for the sake of bechmarking their system against Unreal Engine 4, this is a very difficult title to recommend to anyone, horror fan or otherwise.
For a console game, The Onion Knights feels very low budget. The presentation is threadbare from beginning to end, and hardly any effort has been put into creating a consistent theme. The upgrade and progression systems hit snags here and there, but they're fine when compared to the gameplay, which feels like no improvement was made from the mobile iterations. This title makes more sense as a mobile or Vita offering, but on the home console, this is one that can be easily skipped.
There's a cool concept in Super Blackjack Battle II Turbo Edition: The Card Battlers. The idea of making a game by integrating blackjack into a fighting game model seems silly, but the quick nature of the game and the finite amount of time needed to amass a healthy purse add some excitement to the experience. Unfortunately, there's no longevity to the game. The AI battles can be played way too safely to guarantee wins, and there's no online community to scratch the versus itch due to lack of local multiplayer. Super Blackjack Battle is a curiosity, but it's not a title that needs to be in your library unless it's available for cheap or you have a taste for bizarre game concepts.
The Keeper of 4 Elements handles the basics of a tower defense game well enough. It may be too difficult for most people, but it's not done in the pleasing way that other titles can get away with. Without a strong presentation and no real defining factors, however, there's not much of a reason to pay attention to this game when there are far more exciting offerings in the same genre and on the same platform. Unless you really like cheap games, you should pass on this.
A Bastard's Tale is the kind of game you want to like. The level of challenge is very high, and those with an extreme amount of patience will get the most out of it. However, the combat is rough and unfair most of the time, and your lack of agility can make defeat sting much more. It is short and cheap, but unless you're a masochist, you're better off giving passing on this one.