Matthew Zawodniak


60 games reviewed
62.4 average score
60 median score
31.6% of games recommended
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Mar 31, 2020

The rest of the game is merely competent at best. If the humor had been a bit more solid, or the story had a more distinct identity, it might be worth putting up with the rough edges. Sadly, Saints Row IV: Re-Elected would probably be better off getting primaried.

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Mar 27, 2020

The roster now stands at around 40 fighters featuring characters through the end of the Shie Hassaikai arc in the fourth season of the anime. If you were really concerned with having the latest heroes and villains to play with in the arena, then I suppose your prayers have been answered. For anyone else, My Hero One's Justice was already a tough sell, and now that I can't even get past the title screen without the game freezing I cannot recommend this lazy sequel at all.

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8 / 10.0 - La-Mulana 2
Mar 21, 2020

But let me serve as a cautionary tale for those who want other things out of video games. If this game is for you, then it is absolutely incredible. Sadly, with its high difficulty and demandingly complex puzzles, it is most certainly not for me.

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Feb 26, 2020

It's oozing with style, it's shockingly accessible, and the back-and-forth exchanges prompted by the Grind Grid system make for non-stop excitement in every match. There's even a fifteen hour visual novel experience in the Chronicles mode that helps flesh out the world and characters of Under Night In-Birth, though personally I think I'm more afraid of understanding all the insane proper nouns in the plot summary than I am excited. This was a worthy addition to both the EVO lineup and the Switch lineup, and there's nothing I want more now than to see the game finally reach the mainstream success it deserves.

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Feb 20, 2020

Puyo Puyo 2 is an excellent arcade puzzle game, and the Sega Ages port makes it more accessible than ever

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5 / 10.0 - Crash Drive 2
Feb 14, 2020

Crash Drive 2 is a decent game that doesn't exceed at anything in particular. The fundamentals are all there, like good controls and a lot of goals to work towards, but the gameplay loop is just too simple to be worth more than a few minutes of play at a time. If you just want something to play while you're waiting for the bus then you could do worse, but it's worth noting that the mobile version of the game is free on both iOS and Android. The game fits into the short-bursts niche that mobile gaming has carved out for itself, so perhaps it's best to pass on the Switch version; after all, you can't beat free.

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4 / 10.0 -
Feb 7, 2020

Between it's poor writing, sloppy controls, and lackluster exploration, Bookbound Brigade has a lot of missed potential. With how long and difficult a linear corridor in the game can be and exploration overall taking a backseat, it doesn't succeed very often as a Metroidvania. Meanwhile the bad characterization and juvenile writing kneecaps a framing device that could've been interesting enough to make up for the bland gameplay. I can't see myself ever returning to the game, and I don't have much reason to say anyone else should bother with it either.

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5.5 / 10.0 - Ashen
Dec 24, 2019

Ashen is not awful, and I think that any hardcore Souls fans who just can't get enough of this style of combat will enjoy it. The open world adds a new layer to the Soulsborne format that succeeds more than it fails, but it comes at the cost of weakening a core pillar of the genre. The result is a passable experience, and in a genre that's quickly becoming as crowded as this one, passable just won't cut it for anyone but the most hardcore of fans.

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Dec 24, 2019

Princess Maker is a tough series to get into. The horrible translation is enough of a barrier to entry on its own, but the total lack of tutorials to explain the complexity of the different stats only serves to make the game very difficult for newcomers. If you manage to get over that steep learning curve, there’s a surprisingly deep simulation game waiting on the other side, but it is a tough sell with a mediocre localization of one of the more middling entries to the series.

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S. and Kodai's research, but Takuya's casually gross candor never stopped pulling me out of the story and reminding me of how creepy visual novels could be sometimes. YU-NO is a monumentally impressive piece of the genre's history that finds ways to impress even today, but perhaps it's best not to load a jewel placed back in the 90s and travel back to a time when "sex sells" was the core tenant of the visual novel framework.

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