Divinity: Original Sin 2 Definitive Edition is a truly superb RPG experience that delivers a complex but intriguing narrative, some of the most exciting and intelligent turn-based combat I’ve ever encountered, and a shed load of quests to ensure there’s always something to do
All in all, LEGO DC Super-Villains is very good in the way it incorporates your own villain into what is a great story. The featured characters bring a ton of excitement and plenty of laughter, whilst their arsenal of moves ensures the combat doesn’t get stale
The Big Top Breakout is cheap, cheerful and worth trying your hand at escaping from at least once, but maybe even twice or more to see the other possible ways out. The whole setting is a lot of fun, the clown inspired customisation items are welcome and the jobs are well suited.
Dragon Ball FighterZ succeeds first and foremost in the gameplay, delivering an easy enough control scheme to allow the most inept of players to get a power trip whilst using these insane warriors and pulling off awesome manoeuvres. The variety of game modes gives plenty of choice for all types of gamers to try their hand at and the fast paced fun will keep them coming back for more.
So overall, the surprise success has spawned a fitting sequel in Hand of Fate 2, with deeper RPG elements, interesting lore and some really great challenges which all feel different. The tabletop side and the new action elements blend together well to keep the excitement levels high, as do the new mini-games to test your nerve, skill and luck.
Abyss: The Wraiths of Eden is easily one of the creepiest stories that Artifex have delivered to Xbox One, with the city being grim and the antagonist providing jump-scares. It’s all fun and games though, as it is full of mini games and hidden object scenes that’ll keep you entertained. Unfortunately, it’s a bit short in the grand scheme of things, the voiceovers aren’t good and the cutscenes suffer from a visual standpoint.
The motto for LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2 appears to be out with the old and in with the new, seen clearly in the choice of main characters and the inclusion of many new faces alongside just a handful of old favourites. I haven’t had this much fun in a LEGO game since the third Batman iteration, and that’s testament to the new gameplay features, excitingly fresh heroes and intriguing story.
There’s no doubt about it, WWE 2K18 is a flawed game. The positives of the Road to Glory mode, the MyPlayer play styles and the always reliable Universe mode, are counter-acted by a boring MyCareer that’s still lacking in so many areas and an online side bereft of any purpose. Piling on the misery of the technical issues which plague the game from top to bottom, turning enjoyment into frustration, means that even the joys of the great roster and creative options cannot save it from being a huge disappointment.
The Inner World: The Last Wind Monk doesn’t change the foundations its predecessor found success with. There are a vast amount of extremely creative problems to overcome and a story filled with laughs aplenty, but it’s nice to see a few little additional features being brought in.
Overall, NBA 2K18 succeeds in delivering truly addictive gameplay that is pretty easy to pick up for newcomers, while long-time players will enjoy mastering the advanced techniques. The presentation on-court, pre-match and post-match, delivers a high level of quality throughout.
So, Middle-earth: Shadow of War has taken the addictive nature of Shadow of Mordor, thrown in various new beasts, creatures and Orc types to enhance the experience and made sure there’s a shed load of stuff to do across the massive regions within. Having spent many hours already slaying and recruiting, I can assure you that it’s a real joy to be back in Middle-earth.
Batman: The Enemy Within is flying high at the moment, with a cast of intriguing characters bearing their own identities which feel unique to the series, despite many of them having multiple incarnations in other forms of media. I laughed, was partially fearful of what Bruce has gotten himself into, and felt regular surges of adrenaline as I tried to be convincing as a potential member of the brilliant criminal ensemble in “The Pact”.
The greatness of the combat really shines, especially during the Dojos, but Story missions are over swiftly compared to most LEGO games and the lessened character roster shortens its longevity further. Technically it can be rather frustrating, with bugs making me wary that I might have to restart a level to rectify a problem and the slow-down can make it unplayable at random points, if only for a short while.
Episode Three, “Jailhouse Block”, ensures that the Admin is as fearsome as ever and that the heroes are going to have a tough time if they are to ever end his reign of terror. The action provides plenty of fun and the new characters have interesting personalities to get to know.
NASCAR Heat 2 deserves credit for enhancing and improving on the previous game in the series and the Career mode does bring potential longevity for fans of the genre, even though the currency for doing well is worthless and the seasons drag on when you’re being thrown into other series’ all the time. Having no way to influence the performance of the vehicles, and the only differential from each other being a simple star rating, it detracts from the freshness of the experience.