Overall, Destroy All Humans! is a fantastic remake that I’m sure will please returning fans of the series but might frustrate new audiences. Everything about the game looks great and runs well but since nothing about the core gameplay has changed, it feels stuck in the early 2000s.
Paper Mario: The Origami King is an absolutely phenomenal game. It simultaneously makes a return to what made the original games so great, namely the exploration and humor, while still progressing forward with new, creative battle systems and ideas. I had a blast playing through the game, finding collectibles, rescuing Toads, and saving the Mushroom Kingdom in a beautiful, paper world that always kept me laughing.
Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town is a fun blast to the past if you’re full of nostalgia for the original game like I am. Unfortunately, if you’re lacking that nostalgia, it may be a little underwhelming, especially if you’re comparing it to more modern farming simulators and the repetition of farming on such a small map can get monotonous after a while. However, if you’re willing to look past that, Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town is a fun, cute, and charming experience that will take you straight back to 2003 in the best possible way.
The music is reminiscent of all the 1990s SNES games I loved as a kid, the pixelated art style is well-done and great to look at, and the game feels exactly how I want a 2D top-down RPG to feel in 2020. It takes cues from games like A Link to the Past while updating the gameplay for modern audiences and controllers, all without losing its artistic charm and still paying tribute to beloved retro titles.
Maneater is a pretty fun experience, especially if you’re a fan of shark movies like I am, even though it does have its problems. It felt like being placed in Jaws and being told to just go at it and I loved that. I even ended up getting the platinum trophy since I spent so much time exploring the ocean and digging into the collectibles I could find. However, it has its downsides, too.
Overall, Persona 5 Royal is an incredible deluxe version of what was, in my mind, already one of the greatest JRPGs of all time. The new characters, gameplay features, and more efficient mechanics make Persona 5 Royal worth the time sink for returning fans who have already plugged 100+ hours into the original while making the adventure more accessible and fun for new players.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons is an incredible experience and is, without a doubt, my favorite in the whole series. The formula is familiar for returning fans, yet still manages to feel like an enormous breath of fresh air. It truly is a distinctive, positive, and rewarding simulation that lets you become fully immersed in a fun, colorful, stress-free environment. While it still has its confusing moments, especially for new players, Animal Crossing: New Horizons was definitely worth the seven-year wait and is better than I could have ever hoped for.
Tempest’s aggravating sailing mechanics in a game dedicated to sea travel are too hard to ignore, bogging down the entire experience and making progression feel like an unmanageable chore. Though the world is beautiful and includes an endless amount of quests, the good is, unfortunately, not enough to outweigh the bad for this pirate adventure.