Bethesda claims that the Fallout 76 servers will last “forever” and, while it may not take that long to patch bugs and improve the experience, my foray with the launch version has left me with an abundance of bullet points that need attention. My biggest hope is that Bethesda will take our suggestions and criticisms as a call to action to tweak the faulty mechanics and build more features into a game that has a ton of potential.
It has enough content to keep you occupied, possesses a decent progression system that keeps you invested, and will receive free future DLC without a whiff of loot crates or microtransactions. However, it follows an expected blueprint that may quickly grow stale for players looking for a fresh FPS experience.
The Forza family of games continues to excel in technical quality and content quantity, raising the bar each year and giving the series a strong shot at being the best racing series ever. Forza Horizon 4 reinforces that statement with new ways to experience the joy of driving, whether alone, with friends, or fellow enthusiasts you happen to cross paths with in this gorgeous shared piece of Great Britain.
State of Decay 2 is full of improvements and additions over its predecessor, yet strays little from the original blueprint. If you enjoyed the first game, then you will certainly lose plenty of hours in the sequel, scouring the undead ridden lands for supplies to keep your community alive and thriving. However, if you were hoping for groundbreaking changes to the horror survival formula and pristine technical accomplishments, you will be disappointed. Nevertheless, for a bargain retail price, and as a launch title for subscribers of the Xbox Game Pass, it's definitely worth of a look while keeping some change in your pocket.
Despite a strong focus on accessibility and numerous quality-of-life improvements over previous titles, Monster Hunter: World still begs you to muscle through your initial struggles and build a comfort level with the gameplay systems and pacing. Should you find yourself slowly embracing the concepts, you may blink and notice hundreds of hours have been invested, with you now proudly calling yourself a fan. With a great multiplayer element, there are few games that are more fun to play with friends, but even going alone with your purring Palico sidekick, the satisfying routine of taking down monsters and using their bits to upgrade your gear to take on tougher monsters never seems to get redundant. This is the Monster Hunter game for the world. There is no better entry point for beginners and no better magnum opus for the series.
Lego Marvel Super Heroes 2 contains a diverse cast of thoughtfully created superheroes and supervillains, a fun-filled hub with many unique and interesting sites to explore, and a free-flowing campaign not bound by a movie script. The lacking Fox franchises don't hamper the experience. What does, however, are the numerous glitches, many of which stunt the progression of the game, and the disjointed voice and sound editing work. The technical bugs will undoubtedly be fixed and, when accomplished, this will be an epic, fun, and laughter filled way to enjoy the wonderful mashing together of Lego and Marvel.
Assassin's Creed is one the greatest action-adventure franchises out there, though its hidden blades have been dulled of late from overexposure. After its brief sabbatical, Assassin's Creed: Origins enters the arena glistening in the Egyptian sun with quality and quantity. Whether you're a devout member of the Creed, someone who's fallen off the hay wagon, or even a prospective new member of the Brotherhood, this is the time to dig your blade deep into a succulent new Assassin's Creed.
WWE 2K18 may be my first foray into a WWE wrestling game in many years, but I enjoyed getting quick and dirty into matches and being part of the multilayered action that incorporates a variety of attacks, grapples, and submissions. The dramatic backstage elements were too lethargic, but the Road to Glory mode offers a great reason to keep improving my custom MyPlayer's craft. There's still some fine tuning needed in the animations and general visuals, but the overall feel of a faithful WWE experience is absolute and worth the ticket price for any dedicated fan.
Forza Motorsport 7 still has features that didn't make the deadline. Forzathon events, multiplayer Leagues, and the Auction House and Marketplace are currently listed as “Coming Soon”. However, what is already packed in is plenty of meat to digest, and no feature feels tacked on or a novelty. With a long and flexible solo campaign, quick multiplayer setups (including couch co-op), fun challenges, and lots ways to tweak your ride, wardrobe, and income, Turn 10 Studios continues to perfect their skill with another entry in one of the best racing series in the industry.
NHL 18 delivers the gameplay improvements, renewed rosters, and added content that are the expected additions in an annually updated EA Sports game. Not every mode fits comfortably in the menu screen, but there's enough variety to satisfy gamers who like to control every inch of their season and those who prefer a quick thrill.
Agents of Mayhem delivers high-octane action with an enticing character progression system that has you tweaking and testing out fun and efficient upgrades in combat. Once the battle is over, however, you're left to either wander a listless city out of the compulsory desire to complete every tedious task or grab a vehicle and drive 300mph to the next scripted objective simply to keep the adrenaline rushing. There's no denying Agents of Mayhem boasts enough content to last dozens of hours, but with no multiplayer and few surprises, what you get out of it all depends on your expectations going in.
The original Splatoon drew a lot of criticism for being light on content when it first released. Nintendo made sure the sequel did not draw that same condemnation. After hours in the single-player campaign, the cooperative Salmon Run, and dozens of Turf Wars, I'm still looking forward to every free minute I have to tackle a solo mission with a different weapon or hop into a quick PvP match for a few more coins to buy new weapons and fill my wardrobe. The closed off construction zones and empty alleyways have me intrigued as to what updates down the road will bring.
Giving the story a few rounds of proofreading might have inspired the designers to add more obstacles and offered more flexibility to the players. Still, the well-presented aesthetic and emotional impact make Little Nightmares more than worthy of a playthrough.
LEGO City Undercover is an original, hilarious, and action-packed adventure that provides ample freedom and endless activities. It is apparent, however, that despite its revolutionary features back in 2013, the remastered version shows that many elements need retooling to be on par with current LEGO video games.
Sea of Thieves plots a course in the opposite direction of most big budget, predictable affairs. Loot is not about gaining power, and the thrill is in the voyage, not the destination. This may alienate some gamers, but it is a breath of fresh air for those willing to embrace the change. However, Rare will soon find the community clamoring for more content and improved social options to keep players invested and using their freedom to create limitless and fascinating stories.
With a zest for life and a fresh impression, Pokemon Sun and Moon feels like a new introduction to the series, and not a weary inclusion to simply capitalize on the brand. Whether you are devout follower, a jaded former trainer, or a fledgling enthusiast, now is the perfect time to embrace the Pokemon splendor, pause the real world, and take a paradise vacation to the Alola region.