Resident Evil 2 Remake is everything a remake should aspire to be. It captures the feel of the original almost perfectly while updating and improving almost everything. It has its flaws, but nothing detracts from the excellent experience. It's fun, spooky, and everything Resident Evil 2 was — but even better. Fans of the franchise and newcomers should enjoy themselves greatly. If you like killing zombies, you owe it to yourself to try out RE2 Remake.
Kingdom Hearts III is exactly the sequel it should be. Despite the absurdly long production time, it manages to hit all the right notes and feel like a satisfying and enjoyable conclusion to Square Enix's most confusing story. It's charming, it's funny, it's emotional, and it's a boatload of fun to play. It has its flaws, including a low difficulty level and a borderline incoherent story, but they're not enough to detract from the enjoyment of Sora's big adventure with Donald and Goofy.
Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes feels less like a passion project and more like an obligation to return to an old hit. It has some of the same style and punk feeling of the Wii original — but much less of it. Instead, it feels spread out far too thin, and the moments of tedium tend to outweigh the absurdity that made the previous game so enjoyable. There's some fun to be had here, and fans will probably be glad to get a chance to see Travis one more time, but it's certainly not the No More Heroes sequel they were waiting for. However, there are some hints that Travis Strikes Again is just a prelude to something more.
Onimusha: Warlords HD Remaster is intended for those looking for a trip down memory lane, but it won't impress others. It's an interesting historical artifact, but that's about all it has going for it. (A true remake would be delightful!) Otherwise, it's just Samurai Resident Evil, and even then, it doesn't stand out much from the crowd. The HD remaster makes it the best-looking version of the game, but it's far from a definitive version. It's a nice trip back in time for those who played the game when it was fresh, but without the shine of being "next-gen," it may not hold a lot of appeal for others.
All in all, My Hero's One Justice is a fun experience for fans, but that's about its limit. It's faithful to the source material almost to a fault, and it does a great job of including little touches and inside jokes that make it clear that a lot of love for the franchise was included in the game. As a game on its own merits, though, it is thoroughly average. The unbalanced gameplay feels appropriate for the franchise, but it can also lead to it not being very fun for head-to-head play. If you're a big fan of the "My Hero Academia" anime and manga, you'll get your money's worth from this game, but anyone else should wait for a price drop.
Earth Defense Force 5 is a tried-and-true entry in the franchise. It's cheap, cheesy, low-budget, and a ridiculous amount of fun. All the same flaws and foibles from the previous games are still present and accounted for, but some of the additional polish makes the game more enjoyable for casual play. All in all, EDF5 is a completely by-the-numbers offering that delivers exactly what it says on the box. If you want to experience the franchise for the first time, EDF5 is a great place to start. If you're a longtime fan hoping for something new, you might want to wait for a price drop.
Ultimately, Everspace is a really fun roguelike/action game. The by-the-numbers space shooter gameplay is amplified by the roguelike elements, and it's the perfect game to pick up and play in short bursts. Unless we're lucky enough to get FTL on the Switch, it's the closest thing you can get. Unfortunately, the limitations of the Switch show through in the port and can drag down the overall experience. It's worth playing if you can look past its foibles, but it may be too big of a barrier for some players.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate lives up to the name because it's the best Smash game to date. The absurd character roster, immense amount of content, and general amazing gameplay make it fun in a way that's tough to beat. There are minor quibbles here and there, and the poor online component is a genuine black mark on the rest of the game. Still, Ultimate is a joy to play and a must-buy for anyone who has ever enjoyed smashing some bros. Even considering the Switch's amazing lineup, Smash Ultimate is one of the best the system has to offer.
Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden is a charming, fun and well-made game with plenty of humor and excellent gameplay. It's an example of how you can expand on a tried-and-true formula in a way that makes it distinctive and exciting. The only thing that drags it down are some bugs and occasional difficulty spikes that feel more frustrating than fun. If you're a fan of XCOM-style games but want a new approach, you should absolutely try MYZ, which is one of the best surprises of the year.
All in all, Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams - Owltimate Edition is a well-made and enjoyable platformer. It doesn't break the mold, but it does what it does very well. It's easy to pick up and a lot of fun to play. There are some minor flaws here and there, but nothing really drags down the game. If you're a fan of old-school platformers, then you'll likely enjoy Giana Sisters. It's not quite on par with some of the greats, but it's a comfortable and fun romp for players of all ages.
The honest truth is that despite being a lot older, Orochi 3 is the game I'd prefer to play over Warriors Orochi 4. It feels more fully featured, more well-designed, more interesting to play, and it has a more interesting cast. If you're burned out on Orochi 3, then Orochi 4 might give you a nice fix. It's not a bad game — just a very by-the-numbers entry in the series. Fans of the franchise will probably get their usual enjoyment out of it, but there's little to strongly recommend it over most of the recent Warriors games.
The Spyro Reignited Trilogy is a fantastic remake of the original Spyro trilogy. It expertly toes the line between loyalty to the classics and updating the originals. I would absolutely put it in the high end of remasters, and I felt it did an even better job than the recent Crash Bandicoot remaster. The only real flaw is that it's still a port of PS1-era games, so if that play style isn't up your alley, Spyro Reignited probably won't change your mind.
Call of Cthulhu is a genuinely fun and engaging adventure game that is unfortunately dragged down by everything else. The story is engaging and fun, the mysteries are creative, and it does justice to the sense of otherworldly terror that is at the centerpiece of the Call of Cthulhu pen-and-paper game. Unfortunately, the stealth and combat sequences pull down the game and prevent it from being an easy recommendation. If you have the patience to sit through some rough patches, there's a lot for CoC aficionados to explore.
In essence, Castlevania Requiem is a mediocre port of two extremely good games. Fans will enjoy the chance to play them again — if they haven't already purchased copies for other consoles — but it's far from the definitive version of the games. This collection offers two excellent games for $20, which isn't a bad deal as long as players only expect what it says on the package: two Castlevania titles that they've probably played before.
Overall, SoulCalibur 6 is a solid reboot of the franchise. It doesn't reinvent the wheel but focuses on sanding off the rough edges and returning the gameplay and storyline to the basics. The result is a game that's a distillation of what makes the SoulCalibur franchise fun. There's enough room and depth for people to get into the real -gritty of the gameplay, but there's also a lot of room for enjoyable fighting. It's a bit difficult to justify the purchase just for the single-player portion, but it's excellent for a couch party game — just like SoulCalibur should be.
All in all, Mega Man X Legacy Collection 1 is a must-buy, and I'd recommend skipping Collection 2. The first four Mega Man titles are good Mega Man games and remarkably good platformers in their own right. Anyone who remotely enjoys the Blue Bomber will get a lot of fun out of the games. The second half of the collection is, at best, of academic interest or for completionists. Die-hard fans will get a lot of fun out of the X Challenge feature, but for most people, the real value is going to be in the engaging first four games.
Starlink: The Battle for Atlas is a solid and very enjoyable space-fighter themed take on Ubisoft's traditional open-world formula. It has a good amount of content and is a genuinely fun experience. The only thing dragging it down is the vestigial toy system, which works against the rest of the gameplay. Fortunately, the digital version of the game allows you to entirely side-step that trouble and contains enough content at the regular retail price to make it worthwhile. It's a good purchase for kids, and some adults (especially Star Fox fans) will find a fair bit to like here.
All in all, Zone of the Enders 2: MARS is a noteworthy port of an excellent game. It has flaws, but almost all of them are also part of the original game. There is more they could have done (including a retranslation and redub), but the visual updates and silky-smooth frame rate alone make it a far better port than the lamentable PS3 Zone of the Enders Collection. Fans of giant robots or fast-paced action should consider Zone of the Enders 2: MARS as a must-buy, and those who loved the original can consider this to be the definitive version.
Phantom Doctrine's biggest issue is that it compares unfavorably to X-COM. That doesn't make it a bad game, but it emphasizes X-COM's tight design. With Phantom Doctrine, you end up feeling like everything's a touch too unfocused. The metagame is interesting but messy. The combat is filled with interesting ideas but weaker execution. A lot of this may sound really negative, but I had fun with Phantom Doctrine. Fans of X-COM-style games will absolutely find it to be worth playing; it just has so much potential that it's easy to zero in on the little things that it does wrong. Hopefully, for a sequel, the developer can polish up the flaws to create a true competitor to Firaxis's sci-fi adventure.
Mega Man 11 is a solid entry in the franchise, but it's not an exceptional one. It's a well-made and enjoyable Mega Man game with a great variety of robot masters, fun levels, and interesting weapons. It suffers from some odd difficulty spikes and a disappointing finale, but nothing drags down the game too far. If anything, the game's biggest flaw is that it's too safe and too traditional, but after nearly a decade without a new Mega Man title, perhaps safer is better. All in all, Mega Man 11 is a safe and fun title that's a pleasant experience for fans and newcomers alike.