Super Mario 35 is fun and a novel idea, but it falls short with its main battle mechanic feeling like an afterthought during play. The extra enemies on screen add some fun tension to this ultimate classic, up until the late game stagnates and stalemates.
If you are looking for a new challenging game to take on with a unique take on a tried and true genre, UnderMine is absolutely a must-play. Especially as a day-one Xbox Game Pass release, there is simply no reason not to go spelunking in this well-crafted, deep, and challenging game. With its unique take on roguelike combat mechanics and an array of resources and stats to balance and manage, UnderMine is a great place to start for newcomers to the genre and players looking for a serious challenge alike.
Skater XL doesn’t have to be for you. It’s a simulator with innovative physics-based mechanics in a genre that has long been built around arcade-style unrealistic tricks, racking up points, and nailing huge combos. If you’re looking for that classic experience, you’re best waiting for Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1 + 2. But, if you’re somebody who loves customizing and living your best-simulated life with no need for objectives to complete, this is absolutely the game for you.
If you have not experienced The Messenger yet, there is no better time than now. Its unique and witty take on a tried and true genre is challenging and fun with nice replayability. Never frustrating and always asking you to improve your platforming abilities, the 2D platformer is one of the best of recent years.
Whether you have nostalgia for the original or not, SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated is a genuinely worthwhile game to pick up in 2020 and enjoy. It offers enough to do to warrant the price tag and is certainly a step-up in terms of presentation compared to the original. While it doesn’t offer much new, what it does offer is a great looking, smooth playing action-platformer from the tail-end of the Golden Age of Collectathons.
Despite some of the non-enthralling parts of the farming and cooking, they are still fun enough to keep me repeating them over and over and continuing through the game, even if the plot lost my interest pretty quickly after the excessively long prologue and first few days getting oriented on the island.