Aluna: Sentinel of the Shards retains that addictive loop of loot but falters in performance. It’s clear that the game wasn’t properly optimized, at least for the Switch, leading to stutters, crashes, and graphical disappearing acts. The fidelity itself isn’t bad with a clay-like aesthetic and the focus on Inca Mythology felt fresh and was welcomed. While it could have benefited from livelier characters, the narrative sufficed and provided something to chew on as I played. There’s absolutely no doubt in my mind that gameplay is king here and the experience is worth having, albeit at a discounted price. Its current state doesn’t render it unplayable, but having to sit through crashes shouldn’t happen in a game that never tests the console.
Nier Replicant is a game I dedicated 80 hours to and I don’t regret it. The game is supremely fun to play. I wouldn’t say it’s addictive but I found myself enchanted by its setting. Every action was seamless and as smooth as a baby’s bottom. Although, mid-air combat definitely felt clunky unless I first locked on to enemies. What was the quintessential highlight of this experience was the music. I can’t understate how fantastic it is and I find myself humming tunes randomly, especially this. I am in love with Kainé and find her tragic tale impactful and meaningful. Each character felt alive and vibrant in a grim way. It’s hard to describe in all honestly so please, do yourself a favor and play this game. Nier Replicant isn’t a flawless masterpiece but what it hits, it nails. The music, the gameplay, and the characters result in my claim that this is a must buy.
Deiland is a mobile remake with all the potential to flourish. Regrettably, it struggles to find its footing on consoles, retaining the quirks from being on the phone. The characters are largely robotic and bland, following stereotypes with no attempt to innovate. The game plays it safe but does so in exchange for substance. Still, I must commend Arco because I quite liked his character. His child innocence was evident and his speech patterns were distinct to his age. Chibig clearly has very talented developers on the team. The writers know how to create lore and build curiosity amongst gamers. There’s charm hidden beneath all the RNG but it’s also overshadowed. This game won’t fill any void a fan might have for the slice-of-life genre. Like I mentioned, I do believe the streamlined mechanics make it an ideal introduction to newcomers
Root Film tells a gripping and engaging tale of mystery. I was at the edge of my seat, trying to figure out how they’d explain cases. Though it is worth noting that I did feel like there are leaps of logic. Furthermore, two parts were easily predicted. I wouldn’t hold that against Root Film for the fact that the journey was fun. It’s full of laughs and physical comedy. The banter alone is worth the price of admission.
Fallen Legion Revenants feels like a game that actively fights itself. There’s a lot of potential here but it’s squandered by superficial ideas. Prolonging the combat with damage sponge bosses is a cheap way of doing it. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind when this is the case. It’s the tedium of the system as a whole that has me scratching my head. Sadly, none of the potential this franchise has was realized with this entry.
JRPG fanatics need to add Persona 5 Royal to their collection. The character development and fearlessness to jump into dark and mature topics were appreciated. It took standard tropes and turned them all in their head. It’s visually stunning, and the music causes an ear orgasm. Atlus really paid attention and polished this four-year-old diamond, making it utterly and beautifully radiant. With the vanilla Persona 5 costing less, is it worth buying an enhanced version? Yes – all the extra content is amazing, and the quality of life additions make Persona 5 Royal the definitive version.
Littlewood isn’t just a fantastic little game, but it’s a quaint, chill experience. It’s hard to think this was solely developed by Sean Young. One man put his heart and soul into this and came out with a literal gem. My concept of time was gone the moment I began to chisel against the rocks in the mines. The pixel-art is the utter definition of simple but is way more detailed than it has any right to be. All the mechanics work together beautifully and the music is just catchy as hell. I absolutely enjoy the grind and couldn’t get enough of collecting all the items. The banter between NPC’s was enjoyable and I loved the little portraits of the villagers. There are, however, a few blunders that I came across. Littlewood has a stuttering problem and chugs when walking on flowers. Seeing such sudden jumps in frame rate was jarring, to say the least.
Scott Pilgrim VS The World: The Game is beat’em up bliss and ideal if you’re looking for a palette cleanser between Triple-A titles.
I love beat’em ups and had an absolute blast with several others. My main reason for not being swept away by Double Dragon Neon is it lacked the same charm. The vibrancy was not there and neither was the personality. For these reasons and more, I can’t say anything else but this isn't recommended.
I found CrossCode to be enjoyable. Despite my depth issues, they’re minuscule in comparison to the good. While the game is grind-heavy to obtain items needed to trade, it’s all mindless and the perfect activity to do while you’re listening to a Podcast. Though, I will say the music in-game are great listens. The map is interconnected and will encourage you to explore. Do so to find ways to climb cliffs and to find secrets. I was enamored with learning the lore and Radical Fish Games did a fantastic job of immersing me. They hit it out of the park with the online game feel. Perfectly emulated. The gorgeous pixel art and combat is a love letter to the SNES era. The influence of Secret of Mana is too obvious. I couldn’t help but smile when I saw the homage after defeating a boss. The sound effect and explosion. The writing is charming and the amount of effort put into this should be acknowledged. While the Nintendo Switch version had issues at launch, those have been largely fixed. What hasn’t been isn’t enough to be a dealbreaker.
There’s some fun to be had with Morbid: The Seven Acolytes. The fact I was able to replay it immediately is a testament to how good. The controls are snappy and responsive. The music paired with the sounds of weather helps bring the world to life. I loved the pixelated look and I felt the level of detail they were able to pull off is spectacular. A lot of work went into this, but I do wish they innovated more.
As is, there’s a good time to be had with Shiren the Wanderer. I enjoyed it for what it is, but I feel the cons here are too strong. If I weren’t reviewing this, I’d have jumped out after my second lock-up. At the same time, I think if the A.I. was fixed and clearer instructions are given in regards to the secret pots, this could be a recommendation.
Onee Chanbara Origin is an addictive, arcade hack and slash. It’s about accumulating high scores and executing the best combos. Unfortunately, the music just doesn’t work well. Instead of adrenaline-pumping metal, it’s techno. Not the good kind either. For those worried about the challenge, there are difficulty modes to choose from. I had a lot of fun with Onee Chanbara Origin despite the flaws. I wouldn’t say it’s worth the full price. I also wouldn’t recommend the DLC. I think it should have been part of the package from the start. Keeping those caveats in mind, I do think that it deserves my recommendation.
I recommend Prinny 1 & 2 Exploded & Reloaded for those that love the niche. For those looking for that tooth and nail gameplay. However, the needless frustration induced by the awful level design in the 2nd makes this unattractive for the casual player. To play this for a long stretch will take any semblance of fun out of the experience. You’ll then take a break and may never even return. For these reasons, I say to wait for a sale.
It’s an incredible experience and does what it sets out to do. It’s a fun romp and it never takes itself seriously. Moero Crystal H bathes in its fan-service and delivers it all in the only appropriate way possible; satire. It has so many great features. There are many fun little additions to discover that when brought together with the above; it nails being a fun title. The musical tracks are more hit than miss, and I subconsciously began singing along with one of the songs. It’s superior to Chronicles H in every way and has a likable protagonist to boot.
Windbound is a beautiful game. I do feel that the vibrancy of the islands had to be toned down for Switch. Lush plant life had to be limited, making the terrain feel a bit barren. Food will degrade and there is a weapon durability system. The game wants you to utilize the crafting. As already mentioned, I enjoyed the game. More so when I switched over to the “Story” mode. I can’t, however, recommend this game at full price. The glitches make it feel a bit unpolished. The lifeless world is not great. There’s potential, but it hasn’t been realized fully.
Paradise Killer can stand among the greatest narratives without crumbling. The story had so many twists and turns. Even the sub-plots interweaved effortlessly and blended with the overarching take. For me, the mark of great literature is one that can keep me guessing. I found that here. Each new piece of evidence provided a new possible suspect. However, it fails to translate that recipe for success to the map system. That plummets down a cliff in terms of usability. While I wish fast traveling wasn’t useless and the map system didn’t suck, I still recommend this game. There’s just a few things that hold it back.
Buried Stars is such a fantastic addition to the murder mystery genre. Said to be inspired by Danganronpa, it shows. While the story here is much more serious, I pushed me forward as it did. Despite the tedious nature of reading all keywords, I couldn’t quit.