Requiem has refined and improved the formula that made the first game so intriguing. Amicia and Hugo are not the timid children they were at the start of their journey, and while the goal used to be just survival, things have changed: it’s now about making sure that the people they want to be will survive this new hardship.
My time with Xenoblade Chronicles 3 was overwhelmingly positive. I’ve clocked a hundred hours at this stage, with the main story completed and PLENTY of side content still to go. If you want a big, meaty RPG to dedicate plenty of time, this game’s the one. But remember, soldiers only have ten years on the battlefield – and you might need that whole decade to see everything Aionios has to offer.
If you’re looking for an open world with a different flavour to everything else, diving into the fog-filled streets of Ghostwire Tokyo is just the right fit. Stock your quiver, practice your hand gestures and get ready to be the yokai cool guy you were born to be.
Overall, I would say that you should play Stranger of Paradise for its combat and not its story. While there are nuggets available for series fans, this isn’t the pinnacle of storytelling by any means. It’s best to dive into the gore rather than the lore; fight for fun, be like Jack and focus on the Chaos. Certainly don’t expect this to be a brilliant subversion of the original Final Fantasy’s narrative.
As much fun as I had with this expansion, I do have to admit that I feel a little let down. If this were explicitly leading into another DLC story I’d be excited, but as things are I feel more like I’ve taken a running start into a brick wall with a very cool door painted on it. I can see this as a fun experience to play as part of an overall Assassin’s Creed Valhalla experience, if you were stepping into the game and all its DLC for the first time – but as something that brought me back to the game seven months after finishing The Siege of Paris, it feels like more of a promising snack than a satisfying main meal.
Unveiling the game’s central mystery step by step is always exciting, and there’s enough levity throughout the rest of the game to offset the darker tone that this central story revels in. There’s plenty to see and do throughout this game, and I’m excited for the added content coming over the next year, expanding the school setting and the story of Yagami’s best bud, Kaito.
If you never got the chance to play this underappreciated gem, it’s well worth checking it out on new-gen consoles. Prior knowledge of the Yakuza series is not needed, as the game stands on its own narratively. The game’s core mystery is enthralling to unravel, and there’s almost too much else going on around the city to enjoy while you derail the plot. Crack out your case book, crack your knuckles and get going.
If the clunkiness of Monster Hunter has held you back in the past, Rise could be a good jumping-on point to give the franchise another try. I’m not saying you’re going to be seeing pro strategy videos on YouTube from yours truly any time soon, but I might stick around to solve the mystery of the Rampage after all.
All in all, I was surprised at just how well the Persona/Musou combo works. In the Persona series, combat always felt slow, tactical and specific – a game all about discovering and targeting enemies’ weaknesses to take them out before they can hurt you. These two studios have worked out how to make that same methodology work in a fast-paced action combat environment, while still feeling that same sense of mastery. The storyline feels like a true continuation of the 2016 title with characters represented accurately, unlike some past tie-in titles where the characterisation can become one-note. For fans of Persona 5 this is a great way to dive back in and get another helping of this excellent cast, and spend another few dozen hours looking at some of the most stylish UI in gaming.
After the culture shock of such a total change to the Yakuza recipe, I’m extremely glad the Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio team took such a big leap when Kiryu’s tale came to an end. Like A Dragon is a revitalised game full of fresh ideas and proves that the series won’t be re-treading the same ground with Ichiban in the driver’s seat. If this is the first step into the new age of Yakuza, I can’t wait to see how bonkers the next game will be.
For those entering in here for the memories of a beloved game, I don’t want to knock the experience for you. This is the game you love! But unlike aforementioned remakes, nostalgia seems like a necessity to enjoy MediEvil rather than just being a bonus. Let all brave knights beware.
Between its primary plot and side content, “Blood and Wine” can easily add a couple dozen hours to your overall time in The Witcher 3. Complete with its own twisting narrative, branching mission paths and endings, unique enemy types and – it has to be said again – GORGEOUS landscape, Toussaint is a fitting capping point for the amazing journey that this game has been. There’s a reason it took out top billing in Stevivor’s (and my personal) game of the year rankings. I can’t think of a better way to send off our time with Geralt than an expansion of this magnitude – except perhaps never sending him off at all.