The Spring of 2019 has been a wonderful stroll down memory lane of Square Enix glory, and Final Fantasy XII is the high note it ends on. Featuring every quality-of-life improvement to date, and the ability to play in handheld or on a television at a moment's notice, it's an easy decision to call the Switch version the definitive experience. Final Fantasy XII may end up being the best of the franchise on Switch, but with so many titles still available, hopefully it won't be the last.
Square Enix has struggled in the past with its previous ports of the Final Fantasy franchise, but may finally be hitting its stride. All of the improvements and enhancements give Final Fantasy VIII a much more modern feel without sacrificing any of its soul. As a lifelong fan of the Final Fantasy franchise and VIII in particular, I couldn't be happier with this remaster and look forward to hours of enjoyment wherever I go.
What all this adds up to is the best way to experience Persona 5, whether you’re looking to replay the story again, or jumping in for your first go. Persona 5 Royal takes one of the best games ever made and improves on it, with a ton of extra content you never saw coming.
Few titles exist that feature one of the best combat systems ever created with a story that keeps you on the edge of your seat. Trails of Cold Steel IV is quite frankly one of the best RPGs I have ever played, and I cannot wait to see what the future of the franchise has in store.
Any additional time you can spend sneaking in dungeon crawls while at work, carrying out Dark Brotherhood assassinations at family dinners, and crafting new equipment when you probably should be sleeping is the best addition to enhance the experience. I'm overjoyed that Bethesda has been able to bring Skyrim to the Switch without any compromises to the quality of the original game. After playing Skyrim on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Xbox One, I can easily say that the Switch provides the best experience possible. Bethesda is more than welcome to bring all their games over to Switch now, especially if each game is brought over with the same winning effort of Skyrim.
With all the great titles on the horizon it can feel difficult to circle back to a one year old game, but Donkey Kong Adventure is a can't miss experience that so far ranks as one of the best for 2018.
In an age when developers often compete with each other on who can provide the darkest timeline, or those that put the heroes through what could often be considered torture, it’s a breath of fresh air to play a game as truly wholesome as Trails of Cold Steel 3. The complexity of the story leaves you hanging on every word, and each line of dialogue feels authentic and meaningful.
From the impeccable writing to the beautiful music, everything about this game feels polished. Each and every character you meet is interesting and well developed, and the adventure is perfectly paced. Anyone with a passing fancy for RPGs and who loves a well thought out and engaging story would do well to give this title a look.
Going through the experience today, it's easy to see why Undertale was the talk of the town two years ago. It's not an overly long playthrough, but it's an impactful 7+ hours. A slow burn that starts off cute, but builds up to an absolutely thrilling last couple hours. I'm not sure if the Pope has gotten around to playing it yet, but he would be doing himself a disservice if he hasn't.
But maybe most of your multiplayer experiences are online, well you can just as easily play via your favorite chat app. Since all the communication is verbal, and the manual can be downloaded from any device for free, anyone with earshot can be a bomb expert while anyone with a copy of the game on their Switch can be a bomb defuser. The number of good pure party games on the Switch is short, so it's great to have another title that encourages participation and results in chaotic race-against-the-clock fun.
As a fan of the RPG genre, I love how strategy based thinking has been perfectly mixed with heart pounding action. The biggest concern with Rougelike permadeath is avoiding the feeling of staleness and there is no concern of that here. For one of the best Indie experiences on the Switch so far, the small investment into learning the complexity of the inventory system is more than worth it.
Blizzard fans have a terrific opportunity to get accustomed to the style of play on the Switch and will have a fun title to play heading into the fall. For the rest of us, Victor Vran is a terrific option to dip your toes into the genre. The wide range of combat options and the openness that is maintained throughout makes it accessible to a wider range of audience. If you enjoy overpowering dozens of enemies with wanton acts of destruction, you'll have a hell of a good time with Victor Vran.
I went through a flood of emotions in my first run through, from the calm peaceful walk through the forest to shouting at my TV for the aliens to leave my friends alone. This expertly paced journey through nature provides a similar spiritual cleansing that one gets on a summer hike, and that's a wonderful feeling if you're currently stuck with the winter blues.
It feels odd to say that a video game pushed me to my limits, but as a relatively calm personality I experienced some emotions I haven't felt since my teenage years. I haven't broken a controller since an infamous late night with my Nintendo 64, but on a few occasions playing Dark Souls Remastered I came close to crushing my Joy-Con between my fingers. Not everyone is going to find the soul-crushing difficulty as therapeutic, but amidst the rollercoaster of rage, frustration and depression, I learned the importance of perseverance and patience, and just how good it feels to accomplish something that you once thought impossible.
I'm the guy who complained that Final Fantasy Origins went too far by showing the equipment strength values. Even an old guy like me who was the target age demographic when Pokémon made its debut can admit that Let's Go does an exemplary job of implementing modern improvements while still maintaining its strong sense of nostalgia. Up until this point, Pokémon Yellow has perhaps been my favorite of the franchise, but now I'm not sure I'll need to search my house for batteries anymore.