Arzette: The Jewel of Faramore revels in the absurd animation of the Zelda CDI games while avoiding most of their pitfalls. The princess' romp through Faramore is wacky and fun, with secrets to find around every corner and a new NPC with a hilarious cutscene just over the horizon.
Foamstars can be a blast under the right conditions. It's colorful, fast, fluid, and has a great party atmosphere. It's also disgustingly over monetized, has terrible voice acting, and a boring single player mode. When you're in a match with players of a similar skill level playing as your main, it's a ton of fun. But with only three main modes the fun can run out fairly quickly. Who knows how long Foamstars will last, but even with the negatives it's still worth giving it a shot.
Granblue Fantasy: Relink is yet another bold leap for the franchise and it lands gracefully. The combat is a ton of fun with a massive and unique roster of characters. The game could have introduced characters much better and given them more quiet moments, but the story is nice to watch play out, and it all leads into a massive post-game that will keep you playing for a long time.
Persona 3 Reload is the best Persona game to date. It reimagines a fan favorite to be the best it can be, even if it does stumble in some ways. There are a few Social Links that could have used overhauling, and the game is a bit too faithful to the original in these ways. However, the overall experience is transcendent and took me straight back to hanging out with my virtual friends in high school, getting to know them and slicing up Shadows. There really is nothing out there like Persona.
Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy only makes minor improvements to the three games it compiles, but the extras are well worth it for any fan to see. Some textures are still low resolution and the game is still capped at 30 fps across the board, but these are three fantastic games full of humor, drama, and heart.
For better and worse, Pokémon Scarlet & Pokémon Violet: The Hidden Treasure of Area Zero Part 2: The Indego Disk is more Pokémon Scarlet & Pokémon Violet. Your enjoyment of it will largely depend on how much jank you can still tolerate, but this DLC does some interesting things to spice up the game. Trainers will actually put up a fight, there are cool optional areas to explore, and there's of course a ton of returning Pokémon to catch. It's a very small step back to where we fell in love with the series, but still far from its heights.
Granblue Fantasy Versus: Rising is a small step forward from the original, but all those tiny tweaks make it feel that much better. Online matches feel seamless, the new and changed characters have a lot of variety, and the story is a fun if incomprehensible ride. However, it takes a bit too much of the first game out including offline unlockables or even getting kicked back to the main menu in single player if you lose your connection. Still, its strengths outweigh its weaknesses by a wide margin and is an absolute blast to play.
Final Fantasy XVI: Echoes of the Fallen is very light on story, but provides some of the most fun combat scenarios in the game. If you enjoy the battle system, this is more of that at its heights. It's not the most impressive or interesting DLC out there, but it's very fun and provides a lot of spectacle.
Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora has some excellent mechanical depth let down by repetitive missions and a very safe story. When you're flowing through the environment taking out RDA soldiers with volleys of arrows, it feels fantastic. Unfortunately, the game doesn't provide many opportunities to use the full breadth of its systems. Still, it's drop dead gorgeous and very fun for what it is.
Super Mario RPG is a classic for a reason, and its remake stands just as tall as the original. The visuals and sound are both top notch, and while some new features make the already easy battles even easier, this is still an excellent game that will have you grinning from ear to ear the whole way through.
Tales of Arise - Beyond the Dawn might not be the most necessary followup ever made and you've seen this kind of story told in RPGs many times before, but it's still delightful nonetheless. Combat remains a blast, the story is thoughtful with a fantastic final boss, and the world feels like a realistic impression of what a year after global slavery would be like. Beyond the Dawn is exactly what it should be, nothing more and nothing less.
Fashion Dreamer dives into the deep end of sandbox gameplay and loses a lot of charm in the process. Having everything available from the get go is nice, but it lacks any motivation to keep playing after the first few hours. Making outfits is a ton of fun, there's just not much to do or see outside of that.
Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2 is a huge step up from the original. While far from perfect, it's an incredibly fun and silly time especially online with friends. When playing solo, there's still a wealth of things to do too - it's just an all around good time, despite the jank or perhaps because of it.
Star Ocean The Second Story R is a wildly inconsistent package, with the ending portions falling off greatly in quality, but still a mostly fun game. Battle and its surrounding systems can have a lot of variation depending on your party and how you choose to play. However, it lacks polish in many areas making it very difficult to want to finish.
Slay the Princess is a beautiful narrative of pain, death, love, and transformation. It has so many choices and routes that it's impossible to see them all in one playthrough. While some may come for the terrors of blood, bone, and the unknown, the tender core is what will keep the game in your mind.
Trombone Champ may suffer from the joy-con curse, but it's still a laugh out loud good time with a surprising amount of secrets to find. You're not supposed to be good at Trombone Champ, but playing with friends will make you feel like a master tromboner.