I can’t think of another Star Wars game that’s included so much of the franchise, in such a brilliant and well-made package, and does it all without becoming boring, or bogged down in canon details and retcons. Star Wars is silly. Star Wars is epic. Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga knows this and embraces both aspects, while being a lot of fun and very funny. It’s one of my favorite games of 2022, and while some hardcore Star Wars fans may be loathe to admit it, yes, this is probably the best Star Wars game yet made.
Dying Light 2 doesn’t tell a great or original zombie story, and it features a lot of big choices that mostly amount to nothing. But that’s fine, because where Dying Light 2 succeeds is in the smaller moments between the big ones. A fight against a horde of undead that you hadn’t planned on and might not survive. Escaping a tough enemy using all the parkour moves at your disposal. Barely surviving a nighttime excursion gone wrong and breaking your last good sword in the process. Or just swinging around, looking for the next place to explore but getting too distracted by how much fun it is to move around this place that you just…don’t stop.
Psychonauts 2 isn’t about gunning down the big boss at the end and cheering over their dead body. It’s about understanding that even the biggest asshole is still a person, and deep down they may just need some help. We all need some help sometimes. The key is asking for it. Today, in 2021, it’s easy to look around and see people who seem cruel and evil, and to assume they are lost souls, not worth saving. Psychonauts 2 says otherwise. It says that everyone can change. I’m not sure I fully believe that, but I’ll be damned if that’s not one hell of a hopeful message.
It’s a shame that Biomutant isn’t a better put-together piece of software. Its world feels unique, the way it blends different combat styles is fun and it’s a visual treat to look at on a big 4K TV. But countless bugs, performance issues, overly talkative NPCs, boring quest design, and a sense of overall jank makes it hard to excitedly share this game with people.
Immortals impressed me. It’s an unexpected success, blending comedy and condensed open-world gameplay into one of the most entertaining games I’ve played this year. Even if the combat lacks some variety and the main quests are a bit stale, the rest of Immortals is fantastic.
Star Wars: Squadrons is good. For folks who have been wanting a Star Wars game all about X-wings and dogfighting, you’ll more than likely be happy with what’s on offer in Squadrons. Bugs and some multiplayer issues prevent it from being a totally smooth experience, but I’d still highly recommend Squadrons to anyone who thinks it sounds fun to moonlight as a hotshot Star Wars pilot.
Warlords of New York isn’t The Division 3. But it does feel a lot like Division 2.5 or even 2.6. It’s a big step forward for the game, fixing problems that have been around since last year and giving players more to do and a better end game progression.