Still thoroughly good fun, Onimusha: Warlords is nonetheless showing its age, and unfortunately doesn't really hold up in 2019. For a fan like me, revisiting Capcom's samurai survival horror is genuinely welcome, but anyone experiencing it for the first time might come away perplexed.
BELOW evokes a fantastically ominous air of foreboding with its soundtrack, and its visual style is unquestionably superb, but as an example of the roguelike, Capy's game does nothing new. Perhaps it's intentionally pared-down, but the resulting game is enjoyable for an hour or two, and a relentless chore thereafter.
A sequel that on paper had huge potential, Just Cause 4 is unfortunately a bit shabby and light on genuinely new ideas, beyond the novelty of lightning storms and tornadoes. The core gameplay remains good, explosive fun, but Rico is evidently running out of steam.
Battlefield V builds upon its predecessor in meaningful ways, DICE stripping away practically every one of the series' fripperies to get to the nub of what truly makes the series tick. This is Battlefield at its most undiluted and raw, and it's all the better for it.
A neat continuation of the LEGO DC series, Super-Villains offers a neat twist in casting your custom character and a range of iconic faces from the comic books as the protagonists in a raucously fun story. Yes, it's the same old LEGO game that you'll have played several times before, but damn it, it's still good. And indeed, good to be bad.
A stunning, elegiac western that features some of Rockstar's best writing to date, Red Dead Redemption 2 is also the studio's finest open-world to date, handcrafted with real, tangible care and attention, defying the boundaries of what a video game can be. Arthur Morgan will also inhabit a special place in your heart, as a likeable, relatable rogue striving to find his way in the world. Good ol' Arthur.
Back after a six year hiatus, SoulCalibur VI proves that the series has lost none of its sparkle. If this is the final SoulCalibur we ever see (and we sincerely hope it isn't), at least we can rest assured that the series went out with a bang rather than a clang.
In pruning the campaign from its suite of modes, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 has discovered a renewed focus on the nuts and bolts of what most players demand from Activision's undying shooter series. Blackout is a superb addition, in which Treyarch improves upon the battle royale formula, ensuring the gamble in losing single-player ultimately pays off.
Each year, WWE 2K seems to be gradually getting better and better, and in WWE 2K19, the series appears to be making moves towards reestablishing itself as the enjoyable grappling game it once was. We live in hope that even bigger changes will be introduced for WWE 2K20, because WWE 2K19 is certainly a step in the right direction.
A case of refinement rather than dramatic change, Assassin's Creed Odyssey nonetheless injects even more depth and detail into the series, with dialogue choices and the ensuing consequences that follow proving a worthwhile addition. If you enjoyed Origins, Assassin's Creed Odyssey will scratch the same itch, and then some. A sensational sequel that's thankfully not a Greek tragedy.
Building upon everything that has continued to mark out the Forza Horizon series as something special and unique its own right - beyond being Forza Motorsport's carefree sibling - Forza Horizon 4 demonstrates once again just how recklessly entertaining driving roughshod across an open environment can be. Revelling in what makes Britain great, Forza Horizon 4 also proves once more that Playground Games is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to delivering a polished, deep, and thrilling open-world racing experience.
While Kick-Off's party games in particular are a highlight, FIFA 19 improves upon last year's outing in almost every department. One of the best football games around, FIFA 19 delivers the most fluid and fun entry yet, and is the kick up the backside the series needed. Back of the net.
If you have fond memories of the arcade originals, you've probably already bought the Capcom Beat 'Em Up Bundle. If you haven't, then you most definitely should. For the money, Capcom Beat 'Em Bundle offers a nice little slice of arcade history in seven games, two of which you can play on console for the first time. What's not to like?
Another superlative iteration of video game basketball with very few flaws, NBA 2K19's biggest problem remains in its implementation of those pesky microtransactions that threaten to eclipse everything the game does right. Look past that, and NBA 2K19 is still unsurpassed.
Few games manage to pipe so many jaw-dropping sights into your eyeballs and even fewer deliver such complex, enjoyable puzzles and traversal challenges. Shadow of the Tomb Raider does all of this and more, its exhilarating predatory combat the icing on the cake.
Last year, we said that PES 2019 needs to go big or go home. And while Konami has indeed gone big on refinements and minor changes, the same modes, presentation and lack of licenses holds this year's game back again somewhat. Which is why it's fortunate that PES 2019 still plays a mean game of football. Your move, FIFA.
A wondrous shiny, if slightly flawed, treasure that's deserving of your time, Strange Brigade is enormously entertaining when played solo, even better when you bring a troupe of fellow adventurers along for the ride. Strange Brigade is indeed rather strange, but it's also ripping good fun, best played with a nice cup of tea. Preferably Earl Grey.