Jon Bailes


39 games reviewed
73.0 average score
78 median score
51.5% of games recommended
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Nov 30, 2022

"Life in the Abbey becomes something of a cross between XCOM 2 and Fire Emblem: Three Houses"

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68 / 100 - Evil West
Nov 21, 2022

Evil West delivers on its big dumb action game premise, for better and worse.

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45 / 100 - Somerville
Nov 15, 2022

Somerville never hits its stride, thanks to flat direction and frustrating mechanics.

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Nov 14, 2022

"Many developments are outside of your control, yet rarely in games does the passage of time feel so intimately significant."

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Oct 25, 2022

Signalis conjures a memorable retro-futuristic vibe with its art design, matched with a story that explores the terrifying extremes of sentient life. But its Resident Evil inspired systems feel overly mechanical and fail to produce tension, draining energy from a potentially chilling scenario.

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Oct 17, 2022

Requiem is a masterful sequel and an exceptional action adventure.

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Oct 14, 2022

Scorn works wonders with Giger's and Beksiński's artwork, not only in terms of aesthetic fidelity but in creating a world that's utterly strange to exist in. This is a violent, painful, but fascinating place, thick with symbolism and interlocking puzzles that hint at some terrifying grand design. While it can be overly obscure and frustrating, especially in combat, Scorn serves up one hell of a journey.

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80 / 100 - Dome Keeper
Sep 27, 2022

A simple yet nuanced roguelike packed with interesting decisions, tense fights and lots of digging.

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Sep 20, 2022

"Opening and closing fields to match the thing you're trying to kill has all the fussiness of a game of Simon Says – in that nothing you do counts unless you've remembered to hit the right button first"

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Unscored - Thymesia
Aug 16, 2022

Ultimately, you may have walked grimy paths like these many times, but if the Soulslike virus remains lodged in your core as it does in “Thymesia’s,” you should easily become absorbed into its diseased world, never once hoping to be cured.

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Aug 16, 2022

Once you get to grips with its demands, Rollerdrome’s core concept is realised immaculately. With glorious backup from its retro stylings, each run is peppered with audacious stunts that would grace any action movie. It flags towards the end, however, thanks to an inelegant pile-on of difficulty, a lack of new twists, and disregard for its character’s story and narrative themes.

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82 / 100 - Stray
Jul 18, 2022

Simple, polished systems allow Stray's rich fiction and charismatic star to shine.

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Jun 30, 2022

A sweet treat that recreates the old recipe with higher quality ingredients.

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70 / 100 - The Quarry
Jun 8, 2022

A gripping horror story, but one where the interactive elements struggle to sustain the tension.

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Perhaps, ultimately, you have to accept with “The Centennial Case” that you’re not so much Sherlock Holmes as Dr. Watson, offering up ideas that might be taken on board by the real star, or given short shrift. If you don’t mind playing second fiddle to its fine cast and weaving plotlines, there’s plenty here to keep you gripped. As with any good TV murder mystery, the intent is to keep audiences guessing. “The Centennial Case” should keep you guessing throughout.

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May 5, 2022

In its visuals and audio, Trek to Yomi nails its brief to create an Akira Kurosawa-inspired samurai adventure. Its interactive elements, however, along with its story, are all too ordinary and rarely combine to heighten the atmosphere or create suspense. Worth a try for the sightseeing perhaps, but don't expect it to cut deep.

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Unscored - Weird West
Mar 31, 2022

There’s no escaping, however, that “Weird West” is crowded by its own ambition. No doubt, some glitches will be fixed — like mission objectives failing to update correctly — and some control issues are surely more applicable to the PlayStation 4 version rather than the PC. But other problems are more fundamental. It says something that by the end of the game, I’d killed 599 people, and as much as (almost) all of them had it coming, I had no such intention when I set out. The systems felt too brittle to warrant a more considered approach. In this Western, it doesn’t pay to be a master of the quick draw so much as the quick save, stopping to back up every inch of progress, in case your next move pulls the chair from under you.

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There's a half-decent time to be had bashing your way around Stranger of Paradise's dungeons, but routine level design, rough edges and messy narrative delivery stop the experience evolving into a compelling adventure. Despite its efforts to create ordered systems, chaos has the final word.

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- Sifu
Feb 6, 2022

Sifu is a master of hand-to-hand combat, injecting its kung-fu showdowns with exhilarating fluidity, tactical depth and cinematic scale. Its structure is harder to fully embrace, though, as it demands a lot of repetitious dedication to even reach the final stages. At times that feels needlessly punishing, but the thrill of the fight should help pull you through.

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Jan 18, 2022

Nobody does it better? Not quite, but this is a highly entertaining action RPG.

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