Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is exactly what you would have hoped for on the PS5. Beautiful environments with a visual fidelity that would stand up to an animated movie. A massively diverse arsenal of weapons, although disappointingly, no groovitron. The combat is rock solid and it is all wrapped up in a bow with one of the more Hollywood action style stories we have seen in a Ratchet & Clank game. It is a real shame that there is next to nothing to do outside of the main story but it doesn't stop this from being one of the best games in the series and a stellar title to add to the lineup of first-party PS5 exclusives.
Returnal is a whole lot of fun to play. The adrenaline-fueled combat is complemented with flawless controls. The Dualsense haptics further amplifies the action, absorbing you into the game. The story contains more than enough mystery to catch the attention of any sci-fi lover. It drives you to discover more and does a great job at trying to explain the mechanics of a roguelike in a more mature and detailed way. The randomness of the game can be a little frustrating at times when you just can't find the items you need to survive. The inability to apply any permanent upgrades that impact your combat strength makes it very hard to stay engaged when you are faced with an obstacle that is proving to be a real challenge. Difficulty goes hand and hand with the genre and despite making your blood boil from time to time, Returnal is a masterpiece for the roguelike genre and was a worthwhile risk for the development team that really paid off. It doesn't matter how much you get your ass kicked, you will keep coming back for more.
DARQ manages to deliver a frightening experience without ever explicitly scaring you. The subtle themes of darkness and despair are woven into every room that slowly chips away at happiness to create an incredible atmosphere that rises and falls as you make your way through the rather short adventure. The use of multiple perspectives on a single 2d world does so much to enhance the challenge level without having to resort to convoluted puzzle solutions that only serve to frustrate the player. You simply have to think outside of the box and the solution will be there. DARQ is an incredibly immersive experience that should be on the list of every horror fan.
As a debut game, Maquette has really set the bar high for the future Graceful Decay. Between the emotional story, challenging and creative puzzles and the beautiful visual style, this game is a great showcase of the talent that lives within this development team. Maquette is a refreshing entry to the first-person puzzle genre that will provide you with more than a few challenging moments and a memorable experience.
Paradise Lost is an engrossing adventure that will suck you right in and deliver just enough to keep you satisfied but leave you wanting more. The experience is hindered by an aggravatingly slow walk speed with no option to run. While you will get used to it, it only highlights the limitations the walking simulator genre has imposed on what is one of the most unique settings in a game based on this time period.
At its core, Sackboy: A Big Adventure is a well-polished 3d platformer that has a lot of style and a very unique charm. It has pushed Sackboy even further into the realm of respected video game characters. The creativity we see in the level design may not have made its way to the puzzles but this does not stop this game being a great game to play on your shiny new PlayStation 5.
If you enjoyed the last game, you will definitely enjoy this one. Being in control of Spiderman is a delight in every single way. Fast travel is a forgotten mechanic as you won't want to waste an opportunity to travel via web-slinging. With such a strong foundation and a rock-solid game that came before it, Miles Morales had some high expectations. In many ways, it delivered what you would want from a Spiderman adventure. It falls short with a weaker lineup of villains and a less interesting story. Marvel's Spiderman was just too good.
Ghost of Tsushima is an artistically creative game that often feels like a realistic Zelda game. The minimal UI, clever use of wind and beautiful environmental details make exploration rewarding on its own. When it comes to combat, the game falls short. With a huge number of combat games to draw inspiration from, it is a shame this game is more like button mashy Dynasty Warriors game than it is a precision, high speed action game like Ninja Gaiden. You never feel like the powerful warrior the story tries to make you believe you are.
It's hard to think of where Ellie's story could go having played the first game. Once you get stuck in, you're going to take an emotional beating. The 25-hour long story is massive and it cuts absolutely no corners. The story just keeps giving and giving. The stealth and combat will get your blood pumping and give you some moments you will not forget. When it comes to value for money, you aren't going to get a game that is more worthy of a purchase.
What The Outer Worlds offers in artistic creativity, it lacks in quest diversity. Exploring the colony is really exciting and you will lose yourself in everything it has to offer. unfortunately, you will end up performing a lot of the same menial tasks throughout the relatively short campaign. You have access to an incredible world but the quests never take full advantage of it. There is far too much focus on the political problems of the colony and not enough action and adventure. You never feel like the hero of the story, you feel more like the middle man between the people that are actually important.