Does this mean Warhammer Age of Sigmar: Champions is a bad game? Not necessarily. It's just a game with a very specific purpose: selling microtransactions to Warhammer fans. The game has unique mechanics that are genuinely fun to put into action, but it's still a generic monetary title. Developer PlayFusion plans to continue updating the game by adding new content. Champions has more longevity to it than other CCGs out there. It's an entertaining title for a time-sink for when you're waiting at the doctor's office, but it falls short of being a good console game.
With its many surprises, Darkwood is a title with immeasurable depth that will keep horror fans gripped until the very end. An important focus on narrative-driven gameplay kept me hooked and desperate for answers. A horrifying aesthetic with spooky soundscapes plays with our instincts and terrifies the senses. When the title boasted "a horror game without jump-scares", I initially rolled my eyes. Most titles incorporate some kind of jump-scare to get a cheap reaction out of players. Even tastefully done jump-scares feel cheap to me because I'm not actually "scared," I'm just surprised. Darkwood succeeds where many other titles fail. It's a heart-racing experience that any horror fan worth their salt should attempt to survive.
While Salt and Sanctuary is truly its own game, with themes and elements appealing to fans of the genre, there were moments when it was too similar to its predecessors, and some unnecessary mechanics were added in an attempt to separate itself from the pack. Sometimes, paying homage to something can get caught up in the fine line of copying. However, it is a title that fits well with a "pick up/put down" pace and gives players a lot of choice in how they wish to play. Salt and Sanctuary provides ample replay value in a fun title that is fast-paced and challenging enough for anyone seeking a "Souls-like" game.
By creating a timer feature that tracks how much time we're away from Quinn, Stay extends its memorable experience beyond our gaming monitor and asks us how long we're willing to stay away when it has negative consequences. With great narrative and relatable content, the title falters in creating far too complex puzzles that transform the game from Stay into Stuck. However, Quinn's story (and our story) create solid and thoughtful gameplay that keeps us coming back for more. If one can overlook the puzzling mishaps, Stay is a title that reaches out to all of us and creates a worthwhile experience.
Observer is a beautifully crafted thriller from Bloober Team that creates a riveting story by blending the horror and cyberpunk genres. Its captivating narrative serves as an excellent vehicle for detective work and puzzle-solving. The cyber-noir aesthetic is upheld by character development, rich world-building, and convincing voice-acting. Whether you've played it before or are playing it for the first time, Observer is deserving of your time and money. However, the Nintendo Switch port falls short in comparison to other versions of the game because of its frustrating graphical resolution when docked. While Observer is highly enjoyable in handheld mode, not being able to fully enjoy it when docked eliminates half of the Switch's format. If a Switch is all you own, then absolutely look into Observer. For those with other consoles, I'd recommend grabbing the game on PC, PlayStation 4 or Xbox One first. Overall, Observer still manages to shine through as an excellent addition to the horror genre.