James Wood


50 games reviewed
68.5 average score
70 median score
34.0% of games recommended
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8 / 10.0 - Moonscars
Sep 28, 2022

Moonscars brings a deeply satisfying core combat loop and exciting art direction to the Soulslike genre, even if it has some teething issues with its overlapping systems and narrative.

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6 / 10.0 - Sunday Gold
Sep 27, 2022

An ambitious blend of genres that winds up a jack of many trades but a master of none, Sunday Gold deserves credit for its aesthetics and goals but it's difficult to recommend this trip to the races.

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9 / 10.0 - Wayward Strand
Sep 15, 2022

Wayward Strand offers up a uniquely Australian take on the narrative adventure game with a gorgeous art direction and moving portrayal of hard-working people in a harsh system. Despite a couple of pacing issues and an unforgiven save system, Wayward Strand is an approachable and hugely enjoyable little world to explore and find some catharsis in.

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7 / 10.0 - Steelrising
Sep 7, 2022

Steelrising makes some welcome changes to the genre formula but its best qualities are blurred by its lacklustre writing and world design.

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10 / 10.0 - Immortality
Aug 30, 2022

A true achievement in game design and interactive fiction, Immortality is a gorgeous and haunting magic trick that sets a new standard for the medium.

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Aug 27, 2022

A glossy and streamlined remake of a cult classic faithfully updates the experience for modern audiences but struggles to make much of an impression nearly twenty years after the original release.

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7 / 10.0 - Thymesia
Aug 16, 2022

Thymesia understands the core of what makes the action genre so satisfying but fails to meaningfully execute on its ideas and world.

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Aug 14, 2022

South of the Circle beguiles with its polished presentation and top-notch performances but often forgets to make itself a compelling game in the process.

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Jul 6, 2022

A good heart and strong sense of design can’t elevate Adventures of Chris out of its lacklustre platforming and mixed messaging on body issues.

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Jun 27, 2022

Fobia – St. Dinfna Hotel lifts liberally from the best of the horror genre but its unsatisfying core gameplay loops leave you out in the cold. A nifty camera mechanic allows for some entertaining time-bending exploration and the game has a solid grasp on 2000s grunge aesthetics, even if the story at its heart is a little old hat.

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7 / 10.0 - Ghostwire: Tokyo
Mar 22, 2022

There’s a great game just beneath the surface in Ghostwire: Tokyo obscured and pained by the pretty good one layered on top. Not too dissimilar to the men that lead it, the game is flawed and prone to mistakes that drive away affection it rightfully deserves. But it’s trying and in the end, that’s all that really matters.

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Push through the desire to cringe in its face and Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin delights with gauche earnestness and one of the most rewarding action combat loops on the market.

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5 / 10.0 - Breathedge
Mar 12, 2022

Breathedge takes an interesting premise and shoves it out the airlock with an overreliance on tired jokes and half-baked survival sim mechanics. An admirable attempt to move the genre forward collapses under the weight of too much self-awareness and not enough polish.

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8.5 / 10.0 - Heavenly Bodies
Dec 9, 2021

Heavenly Bodies deploys a fantastical movement system and clever puzzle design in service of a decent enough time on your own but probably deserves to be experienced with a friend.

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Nov 2, 2021

Conway: Disappearance at Dahlia View has some worthwhile secrets to uncover but cases them in an unremarkable mystery.

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5.5 / 10.0 - A Juggler's Tale
Oct 30, 2021

A Juggler's Tale is an uneven medley of indie platforming tropes and philosophical chin-scratching but a beautiful art direction make it almost worth it.

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10 / 10.0 - Death's Door
Jul 20, 2021

Death’s Door is a game that prepares you for the end, relishing in the journey all the same.

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For all it’s charm and mechanical depth, Wings of Ruin only just manages to fly.

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9 / 10.0 - BIOMUTANT
May 26, 2021

Biomutant is a statement of intent, a deliberate step away from the excess of old and toward a genuinely exciting reinvigoration of the genre.

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6 / 10.0 - Amnesia: Rebirth
Nov 21, 2020

Rebirth‘s romanticised version of the genre is perhaps best forgotten

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