Filled with the same style of ridiculous surgical antics as the original, Surgeon Simulator 2 does a remarkably good job of expanding it into an inventive puzzle game. The "simulator" genre's brand of obtuse controls and fussy physics objects starts to feel like a chore as you get a few levels in, but share the experience with some friends and there's a good time to be had.
WarioWare: Get It Together! gets back to basics. It throws out the controller gimmicks of old, but brings in the added layer of quirky character abilities that brilliantly manage to work with every single one of the moreish microgame mayhem that this series is so well known for. Oh, and it makes for a great party game too!
A decade and a half on from the original, Psychonauts 2 is a worthy successor to Double Fine's cult classic. The platforming and combat gameplay is tighter, the world design is as varied and inventive as ever, and while the story is full of twists, turns and comedic moment, there's also a wonderful sense of empathy and tenderness throughout. Simply put, Psychonauts 2 has been worth the wait.
F1 2021 is one of the broadest depictions of the sport ever created, building on familiar cars and handling alongside returning multiplayer, esports, and My Team career modes, while the new Braking Point story gives you a taste of the teammate drama you loved to watch (and mock) in Netflix's Drive to Survive.
It's great to see Mario Golf: Speed Rush reviving another Mario sports franchise for Nintendo Switch, but it's a game that feels that restrained in some places and muddled in others. The Adventure mode loses its focus half way through, and it lacks course variety, but underneath it all, this is still a fun, accessible and often frantic golf game that is easy to enjoy.
It's wonderful to have the classic Famicom Detective Club games remade with modern artwork and with full Western localisations, but the flow of these visual novel detective stories is distinctly lacking and infuriatingly obtuse at times. Still, we can hope this is a sign that Nintendo is considering a truly modern revival of the Detective Club series in future.
Milestone's MotoGP series has taken some significant steps forward in recent years; expanding the career mode, making the bike handling more realistic and lively, but it's a little tougher to see the signs of progress in MotoGP 21. This is a slighter evolution of the series, with the biggest changes the ones that you can see from the jump to the new generation consoles and, if you're on PS5, feel through the DualSense controller.
Evil Genius 2 is a worthy return to the world stage for the classic lair builder formula. While there's certain areas that could be improved in the presentation or the game balance, building up your 60s spy villain lair and defeating the seemingly endless string of agents trying to foil your plans is immensely satisfying and engaging.
It Takes Two is a great rom-com romp filled with action, oodles of variety, and more than a few twists and turns. No, you won't like Cody and May for much of the game, and some segments do feel a touch drawn out, but grab the right co-op buddy and this is a hoot.
Stronghold: Warlords is a refreshing new look for the long-running siege warfare series, rekindling much of what made the series great in the early 2000s. However, there's a number of deep-seated flaws that Firefly need to make the focus of game updates and redefine for the series going forward.