- Streets of Rage 2
- LA Noire
It’s impossible to ignore the similarities to The Witness, and it’s disappointing that it’s so patchy from a technical standpoint, but The Pillar: Puzzle Escape was a short, pleasant and surprisingly enjoyable puzzle game that people should check out. It’s not overly taxing, so you might want to look elsewhere if you’re specifically looking for a challenge, but it’s a fine game for zoning out and killing a couple of hours.
El Hijo: A Wild West Tale’s focus on a non-combat brand of stealth, as well as its forgiving mechanics, serves as a very pleasant change to most stealth games on the market, and its overall style is cute without being cloying. It’s not perfect, with some roughness round the edges mechanically, but there are much worse ways to spend a few hours.
Look up the word “charming” in the dictionary, and you might very well find the cover for this game looking back at you. A bright and breezy game with an important message at its core, Alba: A Wildlife Adventure is a terrific experience, imbued with personality at every turn, that can be polished off in a single session. Another winner in a rapidly burgeoning library from ustwo games.
Free-to-play it may be, but Rogue Company is a high-quality title that’s among the best shooters I’ve played this year and a welcome alternative to the more standard shooters you find on console. I’d highly recommend it, even if it had cost me money. For the grand total of nothing, it’s almost essential.
It may not be perfect, with a control scheme that’s functional but still a little too clunky, and it’s almost impossible to recommend to anyone who owns a capable PC. However, if you only own an Xbox, all of the main features are there, the match engine is better than ever and it’s a great title to dip in and out of for 30 minutes at a time.
On its own merits, Bright Memory is short, rough around the edges and has a somewhat forgettable storyline. But as proof of concept and a playable teaser for the forthcoming Bright Memory Infinite, it’s a tantalising look at what’s to come and I personally cannot wait. For the price of a large Big Mac meal, it’s a no-brainer.
The reason Let’s Sing 2021 works as well as it does is because it feels more like a game than many of the titles it shares DNA with. Whereas most previous karaoke games were of the common “sing a single song and we’ll give you a score” variety, this feels the template on which all future games should be based upon. A more extensive core tracklist would be nice, and I hope future iterations might do a bit more to cater for the quieter singer, but this feels like an excellent pushing-off point for the franchise and the genre as a whole.
>Observer_: System Redux represents a solid improvement over the 2017 original and, therefore, a worthwhile upgrade. It’s a little too long for my liking, but it looks gorgeous at points and tells a terrific story that’s worth experiencing. With a reasonably friendly price, it’s also a relatively cheap way to show off your new toy. Absolutely worth a look.
Dirt 5 feels like a game designed for the new generation of consoles, but there’s still plenty here for those not upgrading in the short-term. Whilst it has some technical issues and frustrating AI, the driving is as solid as ever, Playgrounds is a great new addition and there are some genuinely stunning moments to be experienced. It’s one of the best rally games in recent memory and I can’t wait to try it on a new platform.
For newcomers to the real-time tactics genre, it may represent a step too far as a first experience. However, for experienced players, Partisans 1941 is a solid and engaging title, with plenty of scope to try out a number of different approaches. Overall, it’s also a refreshing change to see the Second World War represented from a different perspective.