- Deus Ex
- Fallout 2
Darq initially intrigued me with its Tim Burton inspired dream world and brain bending puzzles. Sadly, things moved sharply in decline after those positive first impressions. Tedious stealth sections often killed the pace, as did all the trudging back and forth to collect items, and the dizzying nausea-inducing puzzle section? That's just mean. Darq is less the compelling brilliance of Nightmare Before Christmas and more the baffling misfire that was Alice in Wonderland.
Override 2: Super Mech League really should have been a fun and accessible party brawler. It certainly had the basics covered with accessible controls and a vibrant roster of characters on offer. Unfortunately an ineffective 3rd person camera, non-existent online matchmaking, weak league mode and a stifling lack of variety to its gameplay marks Override 2 a long way short of being the Mechtacular fighter we all wanted it to be. More 'Meh'tacular then.
YesterMorrow is an entirely competent and mostly sound platformer. Sure, there's some issues around the occasionally finicky controls, but these are mostly balanced out through the exemplary level design. The main issue here is that the gameplay experience is so very hum-drum. YesterMorrow is a mish-mash of many other better games that we've all played before. As such it struggles to build its own identity and never becomes a compelling experience.
The Wild Eight is an accessible and rewarding survival game that works on so many levels. Considering that I'm not a fan of survival games, the fact that I enjoyed my time with The Wild Eight is high praise indeed. If only the combat wasn't such a bore, then I'd have no hesitating in giving it two thumbs up. As it is, one thumb and a pinkie will have to suffice. Or a seven if you prefer your scores out of ten.
There's a lot to like about PAW Patrol: Mighty Pups Save Adventure Bay, particularly when it comes to how accessible it is for its target audience. This is a game that even the most novice of gamers can pick-up, play and enjoy. It also looks great, my son delighting in seeing all the pups and their vehicles. On initial play my son declared he "super loved" it and gave the game two thumbs up, but over the course of only a couple of sessions, the game's obvious flaws began to dampen both his, and my, enthusiasm. Far too soon, this latest Paw Patrol video game had been entirely forgotten about as we've gone back to playing with Lego instead.
Cobra Kai: The Karate Kid Saga is a very nostalgic game, but not in the way you might think. It's not that it's a beat 'em up, nor that it's based on an ageing franchise, or even because it looks like it should be able to run on a Sega Saturn. No, it's nostalgic because this a licensed video game that is fairly terrible, using its branding as a smokescreen to hide a multitude of problems from an unwitting buyer until it's far too late. It's just like the good old days. If this was 1991 then Cobra Kai would have been published by Ocean Software.
Some games demand a remaster, to be brought bang up to date for an entirely new audience to find and enjoy. Asterix & Obelix XXL is not one of those games. In 2003 it was a solid, if unremarkable, effort. Now, seventeen years later, it just feels entirely unnecessary, with drab combat, pointless collectables and frustrating challenges. If you really need an Asterix and Obelix fix, best just go back and reread the comics I'd say.
I honestly didn't know what to expect when I sat down to play Monster Prom XXL, what is a high school multiplayer monster dating sim anyway? The answer is: a whole lot of fun with some big laughs to be had. How long that fun will last with such a repetitive structure is up for debate however. One thing's for certain though: Monster Prom XXL is the best high school multiplayer monster dating sim I've every played.
9 Monkeys of Shaolin is so close to being a really good side-scrolling brawler that it physically hurts. Hurts worse than a rolling cartwheel kick to the soft and delicates. There's a truly brilliant, satisfying, fun and deep combat system here, but whether you can see it beneath the shadows, silhouettes, staircases and stupid Green Tea meters is another thing entirely.