I honestly don’t think I need to give a precursor to my final verdict. However, I do want to make clear, in each of the categories I broke down above, the game performed phenomenally, I didn’t want to hit you, the reader, over the head in each one by saying “and that’s how they subverted that category while still keeping it interesting” but I will say that all of these things culminate into a beautiful and entertaining game which I would play again and again over years to come. I enjoyed it immensely.
Hayfever is a charming technical platformer which tells the story of Thomas the Allergic Mailman as he gathers the scattered letters which he lost across lands and seasons due to one unfortunate sneeze. Hayfever is a bold balance of two types of platformers. In a post-Braid, post-FEZ, post-Limbo, post-Celeste world of gaming I honestly cannot remember the last time I played a platfomer which made me want to take my time DESPITE not having a story. It’s the kind of game that gets by on guts and asks you to get by on guts as well.
I may be giving this game an overall good review, but I want you to understand that while as a standalone this collection is well put together I can’t help but find the mechanics of its games inferior to those in the Alpha collection. If you can get both, get them, they’re well executed ports of the main series in the Psikyo catalog. But if you can only get one, I will without hesitation recommend the Alpha collection over the Bravo.
I know that I’ve spent the last few paragraphs criticizing Reed Remastered but I do want you to know that it’s a worthwhile experience if you’re a fan of platformers. I took it to task mainly because I think with some adjustments it could have been a solid game for the Switch. As ports go, it is well done and is a good game to begin with. Because of this, it could have been so much more and the steps to becoming more would have been few.
In 2020 traditional puzzle games aren’t exactly flying off of the shelves. I’ve spoken about issues with contemporary puzzle games before and I want to preface by saying that 7th Sector is exciting because it is pushing boundaries. It is difficult, it is atmospheric, and it tries to aim high. if you’re a fan of puzzle games with a world that isn’t merely superficial, and a decent story to match, playing through the brain demanding world of 7th Sector is, ironically, a no-brainer.
It’s no secret that the origin of Shoot ’em Ups lies in the arcades of days-gone-by. In that moment it was imperative to create games that were at once challenging, engaging, and would have people spending their coins. These are the kind of games that are found in Psikyo Shooting Stars Alpha, the first of a two-volume collection of Arcade Shoot ‘em ups.
Games, often have us talking about joy, about the things which made us feel like we’re having fun or experiencing something new. I don’t want you to get the wrong idea, the game at hand, Lydia, is something which feels new, and it is pushing the boundaries of games, in the best of ways. Because of the sensitive content it requires some resolve to get through, but it is a masterpiece. It's a powerful and beautiful game, one that leaves an everlasting impression.