I’d sooner point you to the ACA NeoGeo offerings from the series, that’d be like writing off Link’s Awakening completely just because A Link to the Past exists. That analogy can be applied to the whole collection, in fact, particularly since SNK has made so much of its backlog available. You may be able to pick up a bigger, prettier game but don’t let that deter you from celebrating this unique handheld and its library.
For a certain type of player, Monster Hunter Rise is a Switch essential. If you’re both patient and attentive, and can handle massive opposition in the face of dedication, you will thrive. Though it can feel like taking on an iceberg with a butter knife at times, those behemoths are whittled down eventually and those moments can feel utterly glorious.
3D World might be the more complete package here, but it’s Bowser’s Fury that’s setting a new bar for this type of Mario game and potentially games as a whole when it comes to structure. Nintendo’s sure to pull from this experimental standalone going forward, and seeing the series evolve in real time reiterates just how storied and necessary Super Mario is. Put less broadly, Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury is a game you need to get your paws on.
Persona 5 Strikers may live in the shadow of its lauded game of origin, but with a source that good it’s not such a terrible place to be. Thanks to the Warriors inspired gameplay and vacation theme, all wrapped up in that signature style, it’s the best series spin off since Persona 4 Arena.
This is a finely made game, to be sure, and is fun to play and control. It’s just that until the end it’s a lot of what I’ve played before. It may not be reinventing the wheel, but Cyber Shadow still makes a damn fine one. If you want a definitive example of 8-bit action, look no further.
Scott Pilgrim vs. the World: The Game – Complete Edition is an achievement in creators caring about their work and fans making their voices heard. This game’s return seemed impossible this time last year, but in the end love (and self respect) conquer all.
As a more complex genre that also relies on narrative, the improvements to Fire Emblem titles are multiplicative. Things like UI elements, a more streamlined inventory system, customizable skills, support conversations, and even the Weapon Triangle are all absent. Turning back the clock strips away not just iconic gameplay ideas, but gradually gathered quality of life improvements. This leaves a bare framework in their place. This is Fire Emblem through and through, make no mistake. It’s just the absolute minimum of what a Fire Emblem should be.