Like the Kevin Smith version of A New Hope I imagine almost daily, Sonic Mania is a game made by fans, for fans. And that's not a bad thing. Newcomers may be turned off by the intermittent difficulty spikes, but others may finally understand why many childhoods were spent looking for a kid who had a Sega Genesis.
For better or worse, Fate/EXTELLA embodies everything that makes an anime game "anime." Characters that speak only in exposition. Fan service that creeps you out - unless it doesn't. Gameplay that is more about watching cool stuff happen than actually being fun. Owners of the PlayStation versions need not double dip. If, however, you feel your Nintendo needs a little more anime, this can be the microwave mozzarella sticks before dinner.
Klang’s good ideas are upstaged by their own poor execution. Neither the rhythm or the platforming are good enough to stand on their own, with the sum of their parts still failing to add up to a complete experience. I wanted to like Klang, but this hybrid is less of a chimera and more of an abomination. At least the music was good.
Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse is the perfect nightcap game for summer’s end. A perfect portable adventure that should satiate the appetites of fans that also serves as a solid entry point for those unfamiliar. Demons, dungeons and damnation await those who wish to take on the mantle of Godslayer. If that sounds like a sales pitch, it’s because I finally found a Shin Megami game that does not require a broken controller.
When I began to play God Eater 2: Rage Burst, I was ready to roll my eyes and dismiss the game as a boring, watered-down Monster Hunter clone. However, the more time I spent with it, the more it began to grow on me. The characters were flat but not cringe-inducing. The combat was repetitive but showed nuance as I dug more into Blood Arts. The graphics were passable, if not wholly unpleasant. God Eater 2: Rage Burst is comfort food with a controller, bland but filling. It may not be the best Thanksgiving, but I can see why some kids call it their favorite holiday.
There is no time travel in No Man’s Sky, only the momentum to push forward. Pushing forward in the hopes that the next planet you land on will take your breath away. Pushing forward in the hopes that you will find a derelict ship ripe for the taking. And at the very least, pushing forward in the hopes that they can fix the combat with a patch update.
If Mobile Suit Gundam Extreme Vs-Force intends to be the resurgence of the franchise here in the West, it could not start on a more wrong foot. This game is not a primer; it is only for the Gundam devout. Only they may be able to forgive the clunky controls, the tedious battles, and the story that’s just as convoluted as its name. Only they will welcome its muddy graphics and absurd difficulty spikes. Everyone else should know better.
Mighty No. 9 is a lot like your Uncle Steve. You know, the one that still lives in his hometown where he played varsity football in high school. Uncle Steve never fails to remind you of this, just as he never fails to remind the waitress bringing him his coffee. She is too young to know who he is, but he's quick to point out the picture hanging near the entrance. The best quarterback this town has ever seen, he tells her. She smiles and laughs, too sweet to tell him that thirty years was a long time ago. Mighty No. 9 tries to hold onto its legacy, resting on its laurels while the rest of gaming world has left town a long time ago. We paid for the coffee out of pity now, instead of hope. Because Uncle Steve was always going to let us down from the start.
Playing Dead Star is like eating at a fusion restaurant down the street. You order all the food you like, only to realize the California rolls don’t pair well with the kung pao chicken. On paper, the whole thing sounds delicious, but in the end the effort to combine them gives you a stomachache. It’s not a bad game; it just doesn’t do anything striking with the mechanics it borrows. The character art is wasted by its lack of use, as is the story, which could have benefited from a dedicated single-player campaign. Playstation Plus users may want to give it a shot, but I am sure there is better food on the block.
I really wanted to like Forced Showdown. Maybe there’s something about it that just didn’t *click* with me. Too many half-baked ideas does not a casserole make, my mother always said. If they had taken the time to expand on what makes each of the genres compelling, this could have been a whole different review. Instead, it’s a hot mess on your keyboard.
Those fans are better off utilizing the Xbox One’s backwards compatibility to go back and play again. Those curious about what the fuss was all about back in the day will get something more out of it. Gameplay is where it counts, and regardless of its bland design and extensive hodge-podging from other properties, Shadow Complex Remastered is a fun game that will reward your time spent with it.
The Definitive Edition of Ori and The Blind Forest is the best this game can be. Returning players may want to tilt the score down while players who are discovering it for the first time will be in for a treat and should tilt the score up. As challenging as it can be, those sighs of relief after a particularly challenging sequence are still just as rewarding. Returning players may want to consider what their time is worth, however, as paying for additional "features" is not a route the industry should be going. If Ori burned you before (as it had me), don't expect an apology here. It's still pretty, fun, and occasionally frustrating, and it still might burn your parent's house down.
Far Cry Primal is like lobster macaroni and cheese. Comfort food elevated by trying something different, and as a result it mostly succeeds. Taking out the guns and vehicles (unless you count the bears) and keeping the story simple were bold, smart choices for a franchise that could have easily wore out its welcome. Ironically, for a game set so far in the past, it's the past that occasionally holds back Far Cry Primal from true greatness. Nevertheless, this game is a breath of fresh air for both the franchise and first-person action games in general. Just keep an eye out for bears.
Overall, Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel doesn't do anything wrong; it just meets the bare minimum. It's like eating a saltine cracker. Bland, but not bad. Without their source materials readily available, few will be able to appreciate the level of fan service present, though I'm sure everyone can appreciate cat attacks. Cat-tacks. (Okay, I'll stop.)
To everyone who grew up with Metal Gear Solid, especially the ones who bought Zone of the Enders for the Metal Gear Solid 2 demo, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is an experience that will never be forgotten. While it is sad that we may never see another Metal Gear with Kojima's vision, he gave us one hell of a goodbye.