Lucas White


244 games reviewed
77.1 average score
80 median score
52.7% of games recommended
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6 / 10 - Broken Roads
Apr 10, 2024

Ultimately my time with Broken Roads didn’t light up any of the parts of my brain that video games typically do on some level or another. There’s some promise at first with its distinct, all-encompassing cultural flavor. But the scenario holding up the setting only struggled to capture my interest. Combat was a similar vibe, feeling like doing chores in the middle of reading a middle of the road novel in a crowded genre. While cool on paper the morality system did more harm than good, overloading the dialogue and getting in the way of character and personality. Nothing in Broken Roads felt bad or, well, broken. But whenever I played it, unless I was chuckling at the slang translator doing something weird I was always thinking of other things I would rather be doing.

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Legend of Legacy was fun and intriguing on the 3DS, but on the Switch it feels like a no-brainer. The frame rate issues and visual imperfections are gone, making the art and character designs stand out even more. The music, composed by Masashi Hamauzu for all you Final Fantasy XIII degenerates out there, is a home run. If this is the kind of game you can gel with, a hardcore dungeon-crawler with strange rules and light storytelling, don’t miss it. If some of these ideas sound neat, but other parts are scary, try out Alliance Alive instead. This team had something special going for sure, and it brings me hope for these kinds of passion projects to see them reappear on different platforms.

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Mar 14, 2024

Times like these I’m glad I get to blindly jump into games like Outcast - A New Beginning. I admit, I’d never give a game like this the time of day if I saw it on a shelf or in a Steam list or whatever. But I urge people out there who like retro sci-fi or classic games in that 90s PC style to give Outcast a shot. It’s charming and silly without being corny, and has a pitch-perfect game feel when it comes to flying around the world and fighting. The storytelling doesn’t hit any home runs, but the sum of the other parts hold the game up regardless. It’s a good time, and bigger, more expensive games could stand to learn a thing or two from it at the end of the day.

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Mar 4, 2024

As a player, a lot of what’s on the table with The Outlast Trials ain’t for me. The prospect of time investment for a survival horror-style game combined with the Fortnite-style game loop makes my brain hurt. But I understand why it works for the folks who are down, and looking at those sickos having a great time in the Early Access version is a vicarious sort of fun you can have from the critic’s position. I don’t enjoy it, but I “get” it, and being able to see the enjoyment elsewhere helps wrap my head around the game holistically and fill in the blanks. I open this window into my brain for y’all to help explain why a game I won’t be picking back up again still gets a good score!

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Mar 4, 2024

The Thaumaturge’s biggest problems are a result of trying to do so many different things at once. It’s a juggling act on the best of days, and if you’re a working-class person in 1900s Poland you aren’t having a bunch of great days. Not consistently, anyway. This is a deeply interesting game with a lot of cool imagery, historical storytelling hooks and complex systems that are a blast to engage with. There are a ton of swings, and not every one is a hit. Sometimes the voice acting is wacky, the protagonist feels underdeveloped, and combat can be annoying and burdensome. But I also accidentally stayed up way past my adult, parent bedtime on multiple nights playing it. I feel and probably look like Wiktor after catching a new Salutor, but it was worth it.

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7 / 10 - qomp2
Feb 19, 2024

If anything, I’m grateful to qomp2 for introducing me to the concept, and eventually to experiencing the first qomp. I can see why that game hit the way it did, and inspired Atari to pick it up and try its own version. It’s a cool subversion of one of gaming’s oldest-standing innovators. But it feels shortsighted to hand the project off to a different set of hands, when the first set is the one that made the magic happen in the first place. And there’s genuine effort here, but the vibes are off, man.

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8 / 10 - Helldivers II
Feb 16, 2024

Honestly, just take a look at your social media platform of choice right now. Helldivers 2 is exploding, in a way that even fans of the first game have not expected. And there’s a reason for that. This game is rough around the edges, but those edges are serrated; there’s an authorship to the chaos and slight jank that feels woven together from top to bottom. The systems, humor, structure… every aspect of this game feeds into the other for an experience that nails cohesion. Helldivers 2 plants its flag in the dirt and announces itself with a rare confidence in video games today. Now get out there and serve some piping-hot Liber-Tea, soldier.

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Feb 13, 2024

I definitely had fun solving a bunch of puzzles, especially ones that involved finding the right visual path through a group of rings or playing a sort of reverse Minesweeper with black and white squares. Others, like hidden objects or hunting for nodes inside a boundary, were annoying but I never felt forced to try them. There’s a lot to like about that idea of zero pressure puzzle-solving. But everything else, like leaping, floating, and gliding around the open world, filling in the skill tree, or deciphering the map and other UI elements, bogged me down. Islands of Insight is a shot at blending together ambitious scale with cozy gaming, and has to try harder than it should to not collapse under its own weight.

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5 / 10 - Graven
Jan 23, 2024

It feels like there were some very specific ideas the creators of Graven wanted to communicate. But while those ideas sometimes weave together with the game’s dark fantasy, old-school shooter style to form some immaculate vibes, that’s about as deep as it gets. The game seems confused about whether or not it wants to be an awesome action game, a thoughtful explorative puzzler, or some kind of mutant Soulslike gimmick. It sputters across the finish line not really achieving anything but a cool look, undermined constantly by boredom. It’s a shame, because Graven has a hell of a vibe. But there’s simply too much bonkin’ and not enough bangin’.

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Jan 18, 2024

At this point we’re circling back to the beginning. I think it’s super awesome that Another Code: Recollection exists. A deeply underrated classic I thought was, due to the literal expiration of its dev studio, never going to see the light of day again has come back. It’s also the first time the second half of the story is available outside of Japan and Europe! Unfortunately, I’d probably prefer to actually revisit and play the originals because of how the remakes sand the edges off. Between the middling voice acting undermining the story, the barely-there puzzles, and the sterility of the visuals, it feels like the magic of adventure games on Nintendo’s older, gimmicky hardware hasn’t been recaptured. But I still had a great time taking it all in. Weird, huh? That’s what being a history nerd feels like.

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In a lot of ways for someone like me, Dragon Quest Monsters: The Dark Prince is weirdly validating for a video game product you purchase. This series has been living in relative obscurity for decades, either going unlocalized entirely or simply being seen as a niche within a niche destined for handheld gamers looking for more Pokemon. But there’s so much meat, life, and ambition in this one. It’s a console game, it’s got a story it wants to tell, it has ideas beyond “catch slimes, win tournaments”. I hope this is the direction Dragon Quest Monsters keep moving in. It’s no Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth, but what is?

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Dec 6, 2023

It helps that you can see what you're doing when you're driving around a desert.

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It’ll take a specific kind of person to get the most out of Turok 3. Shadows of Oblivion is an impressive remaster of an interesting retro game, but even when it came out it wasn’t blowing any minds. Did you grow up on games like the Turok series, those chunky, 90s shooters made for consoles before Halo? Are you interested in fascinating, specific corners of gaming history, and what kinds of restorative efforts can be applied thereof? Players just looking for a new shooter to play probably won’t have a great time. For me, I feel like I just slingshot time-traveled inside my own brain. I don’t know what that means, either.

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Oct 31, 2023

Robocop: Rogue City is an argument that not only can licensing IP work well in smaller-scale games, but given the right combination of creativity and focus a more dormant IP can be especially effective. A property like Robocop does not have a clear position in pop culture right now, beyond the obvious late-80’s movie nostalgia. But the team at Teyon, with a combination of awareness and sincerity, definitely found one. I had so much fun blasting through waves of jabronis and laughing at Robocop’s earnest policing antics. In a crowded year like 2023, Rogue City is an unexpected gem.

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If there are indeed plans to continue, Metal Gear Solid: Master Collection Vol. 1 is a hell of a first volley. From tweaks and fixes of previous re-releases to an abundance of supplemental material across a whopping seven (arguably more) games, Konami really rolled up its sleeves. Even with some problems and weird choices here and there, this collection exceeded my expectations for sure. Whatever follows this will really put the format to the test, as there’s less precedent and/or existing ports for games like Metal Gear Solid 4 or Metal Gear Acid. The foundation laid is awesome though, and shows that despite past drama there are people at Konami who definitely care.

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Honestly, unless you’re a big fan of Hot Wheels themselves, and derive a lot of joy from unlocking the different digitized versions of real-world toys, you can do better. Cruisin’ Blast came out the same year the first Unleashed did, and that game captured the essence of banging toy cars together in over the top racing environments perfectly. In comparison, Turbocharged is more scattershot, trying to be a Jack of All Trades and only hitting the bullseye with the IP’s aesthetic.

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Sep 28, 2023

Even if the story isn’t my favorite, Fate/Samurai Remnant still holds court in the greater Fate universe. There’s a lot of detail and depth in this game, far more substantial than the average Musou joint. And I love these kinds of games for the record, so my expectations were fairly high. Some of the new Servant characters are awesome, and the way the game plays with its own series’ tropes to adapt the source material rules. At the end of the day, there’s a lot for Fate sickos to sink their teeth into, and there’s no outside required reading bogging it down. If the word “Saber” makes you think of angular bangs and a cutesy stray hair instead of a Civil War sidearm, this is a game for you.

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Infinity Strash plays with its own legacy a bit, mostly by using models from Dragon Quest proper instead of imitating the manga’s art style. But the rest of the game, while fun in that lizard brain kind of way, doesn’t do a ton to separate itself from its peers. Fans of the series will have a decent time, but there’s not much here for folks on the outside. If you’re curious about Dragon Quest as a whole, we recommend starting elsewhere.

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7 / 10.0 - Silent Hope
Sep 26, 2023

I’m down for another one of these, especially if I get to keep bludgeoning monsters with a greatsword-sized turnip.

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Sep 21, 2023

For a while there, things weren’t looking so great for Bomberman, one of the most underappreciated gaming mascots out there. But it feels like the weird, little guy’s alive and kicking now, with two retail games within a few years of each other and more. Super Bomberman R 2 isn’t the ultimate Bomberman experience, but it’s a cute, wholesome package of old school, multiplayer videogame glee. Which is weird to say about a game with Pyramid Head in it.

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