Chris "Atom" DeAngelus


397 games reviewed
79.0 average score
80 median score
64.5% of games recommended
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8 / 10.0 - Gordian Quest
Jun 17, 2022

Overall, Gordian Quest is fun deck-builder that's similar to a Griftlands-style campaign that's absolutely packed with content. It goes all-in on the RPG elements, which is both its greatest strength and biggest flaw. It's not as addictive as some of the strongest games in the genre, but it's still fun to play. I wish the developers had trimmed off some of the fat, but since they didn't, it means that you're getting a game with tons of content for a very reasonable price.

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge is exactly the game it promised to be: a heartfelt, funny, clever and incredibly fun tribute to a classic beat-'em-up and the cartoon on which it was based. The old-fashioned version of the Turtles might seem a bit odd to kids who are used to the more modern versions, but even they should have a ton of fun beating the heck out of the Foot Clan with their favorite of the timeless terrapins. If you feel nostalgia for Turtles in Time, then Shredder's Revenge is made for you, and I'm darn glad it is.

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9 / 10.0 - Neon White
Jun 15, 2022

Neon White is an absolute delight of a speed-running game. It's easy to pick up and play, and it has enough bite that you need to master how to shave off a few seconds from your time to proceed. More importantly, it feels really good to do so. The plot is fun, if not groundbreaking, and the likeable characters keep you invested. Aside from some backtracking that I wasn't fond of, Neon White hits all the marks and hits them well. Just be prepared to start playing and discover that eight hours have flown by.

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Jun 14, 2022

Metal Max Xeno Reborn feels like a wasted effort. There is a lot of potential that Reborn brings to the surface, but ultimately, it's not the game that it needs to be. If you're a Metal Max fan hoping for an improvement over Xeno classic, then you'll technically get what you're looking for, but it's still not as good as earlier games in the franchise. If the idea really appeals to you, then you'll get some fun out of it, but otherwise, it's just tough to justify a purchase.

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Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords is a fairly weak port of a flawed classic. The core characters and writing are still among the best in the entire franchise, but the gameplay is rapidly showing its age, and many of the flaws from the original release are still present. Fans of the franchise who may have skipped this particular entry should absolutely give it a shot, but for longtime fans, the Restored Content DLC is going to be the real game-changer.

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8 / 10.0 - Card Shark
Jun 2, 2022

Card Shark is an interesting little game. At its heart, it is more of a card-themed visual novel with some educational elements, but it presents the entire experience in an enjoyable package that avoids overstaying its welcome. A few nagging bugs and glitches caught my attention, and nothing ruined the game, but hopefully at least one issue will be patched soon. Either way, it's a fun experience. Just don't try to take the techniques to Las Vegas ….

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9.5 / 10.0 - Slay The Spire
May 31, 2022

Slay the Spire is the very definition of a game that's simple to learn and difficult to master. The core mechanics and gameplay are so easy that anyone can pick it up and have a relatively fun time, but learning how to survive takes time and effort. No matter the level, it remains engaging throughout by making every choice meaningful, and victory is decided by your skill and just a dash of RNG. There are many clones out there, many of which are excellent on their own right, but the original Slay the Spire is still one of the most addictive deck-builders ever made.

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May 19, 2022

Vampire: The Masquerade – Swansong is a really engaging romp into the world of the masquerade. I really appreciate that it focuses on the less combat-oriented elements of the tabletop game, something almost every title in the franchise puts on the backburner. Some glitches and a relatively unimpressive presentation drag it down a little, but if you were looking for something focused more around politics and investigation instead of tearing people in two, Swansong is the game for you.

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Apr 7, 2022

13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim is a perfect game for the Switch. The visual novel adventure gameplay translates almost perfectly to a handheld format, and I found it to be more fun to pick up and play in short spurts versus needing to park myself in front of a TV. Even the more obscured mecha combat work well in a handheld format. The gameplay and story still feel fresh and engaging, and those who've already finished it once might find something to enjoy here. It's easy to recommend to anyone who has a taste for mind-bending 999-style games, and it's likely to please a few newcomers as well.

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Chrono Cross is a weird little JRPG that is arguably hindered by its connection to one of the genre greats. It has a distinctive feel and style, an interesting plot, and the craziest cast of characters you'll ever see in a JRPG. Weak characters and many nagging PS1-era flaws keep it from being a hearty recommendation. If you've passed on Cross because it's not Trigger 2, it's worth a shot, and Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition is probably the best way to experience it.

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Apr 4, 2022

LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga genuinely hits the mark. It's a love letter to the nine main movies in the Star Wars franchise, and it feels like something that's made for anyone to enjoy, whether their favorite movie is "The Phantom Menace" or "The Rise of Skywalker." It doesn't reinvent the wheel as far as LEGO games go, but it's darn fun with a load of content that is sure to keep fans happy for a long time.

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Mar 31, 2022

Alas, there's nothing to recommend Dynasty Warriors 9: Empires. DW9 is probably one of the lower points of the franchise, and what Empires does to improve on it is fairly minimal. There's absolutely no reason to buy it over the bucketload of better Warriors titles available on the PS5. Even if you're looking for something in the same setting, there are plenty of other Dynasty Warriors options. The most positive thing I can say is that it's a better game than the original, but it's an easy one to skip with so many other titles available.

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Mar 30, 2022

Kirby and the Forgotten Land is a delightful cotton candy fluff of a game. It isn't difficult or complex, but it is frequently fun and always adorable. It's almost more of a theme park ride than a platformer, but it does a great job of keeping itself engaging and interesting with a constant shift in mechanics and level design. The only flaw holding it back is the poor performance when docked, which could be a game-breaker for someone hoping for a Mario Odyssey level out of everyone's favorite pink puffball. If you enjoy Kirby, you'll enjoy Kirby and the Forgotten Land, and I'd be hard pressed to name a better choice for younger gamers.

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8.5 / 10.0 - Triangle Strategy
Mar 28, 2022

Triangle Strategy is a little too safe to call a new classic, but at the same time, it's one of the best SRPGs I've played in ages. The solid level design and fantastic character variety keep the game engaging all the way to the end. The plot is a touch mundane, but I ended up being quite fond of most of the characters. Triangle Strategy is an example of a title that does almost everything right. If you're a SRPG fan, then Triangle Strategy is right up your alley; if you're not, it's a great place to start.

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7 / 10.0 - Relayer
Mar 24, 2022

Do you want a completely average, by-the-numbers strategy RPG that revolves around giant robots? Relayer will probably scratch that itch. If you're looking for anything more than that, it falls flat. Nothing the game offers excels beyond "average," and there are enough nagging flaws and problems that you have to put some effort into getting to the good bits. There's the makings of a better sequel here, but for now, Relayer barely makes the grade.

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8 / 10.0 - Rune Factory 5
Mar 22, 2022

Rune Factory 5 is about as safe and unambitious of a sequel as you can get. It feels and plays a lot like Rune Factory 4, with a different camera angle and new characters. It still contains all of the fun, addictive farming-and-fighting action that the franchise is known for. It's a solid and enjoyable game, and it absolutely scratches the Story of Seasons itch in a very satisfying way. But don't expect Rune Factory 5 to be anything more than a new Rune Factory game.

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Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origins is a strange, ridiculous, and largely delightful game. You have to accept a game that is almost painfully free of irony and self-awareness, but if you do, you'll find one of the most enjoyable spin-offs to carry the Final Fantasy name. The combat is fast, frantic, and fun, and the customization options are through the roof. The only thing that holds it back is if players enjoy the story in the same campy way as Resident Evil 4 or only find it to be frustratingly unfun.

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At the end of the day, Assassin's Creed: Valhalla - Dawn of Ragnarök is a nice but not particularly special expansion pack. The plot is fun enough visit into Norse mythology, but unfortunately, that's such a well-trodden area that it feels less special to dive into it. The new powers are a cool twist on the formula, but ultimately, you're still playing more Valhalla. If you enjoyed the game, then you'll enjoy the expansion, but if you've burned out on it, then being able to turn into a bird isn't going to refresh your Viking spirit.

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Atelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dream is a very by-the-numbers Atelier title, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. It's fun to play, has a strong cast, and is nicely polished. It doesn't try anything new or special, and it feels very much like a "safe" game. If you like Atelier titles, Atelier Sophie 2 is going to be a solid, if unexceptional, entry in your collection. It's an improvement on the original Sophie through and through, but it doesn't live up to other recent titles.

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8 / 10.0 - Shadow Warrior 3
Feb 28, 2022

Shadow Warrior 3 is a fun shooter that falls short of greatness. The combat is fast and frantic, and it is intense enough that I found myself getting lost in it. The short length, lack of variety, and inevitable comparisons to Doom Eternal don't do it any favors. I am glad that I played Shadow Warrior 3, and I imagine a lot of folks will feel the same way. It might be best to wait for a price drop, as $50 is slightly hefty for the amount of content you get.

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