Overall, I think Neptunia: Sisters Vs. Sisters is a fine entry in the franchise. The new characters are a lot of fun, the story is well written and feels like a Nep game, and combat is really fun as well. I got some help from a friend on Twitter, so I was able to get the true ending during my playthrough. There is the endless tower you could challenge and an awesome photo mode here to play around with for hours as well. I feel like this one is well worth the $49.99 asking price. I think it’s pretty insane that IFI has decided folks who want the swimsuit DLC should have to buy the Digital Deluxe Edition at $69.99 with no way for anyone buying a physical copy to obtain these, and I probably wouldn’t be as pissed about this if there were any alternate costumes in the game, but that’s not the case. I hope something they do in the next entry is bring those back. Doing that and adding some more CGs to unlock would go a long way to making this an even more solid Neptunia title. That being said, fans shouldn’t miss this one, the sisters are still as cute as you remember, and this a fantastic adventure.
At the end of the day, Samurai Maiden is a mediocre game that could’ve been better with just a few tweaks. There should’ve been some unlockable costumes, more enemy variety and a few tweaks could’ve been done to combat to make it feel less cheap. In the latter stages where the bigger enemies get a ton of minions, you will see just how cheap this can all be when you’re getting hacked on and juggled by things you cannot see. That being said, this is still a decent action game that has a great soundtrack, some good looking graphics and an amazing voice cast. I feel like the price tag is a bit much, but if you picked this one up on sale I think most folks would be satisfied with it. I know I really loved seeing Tsumugi and these girls grow closer on this grand adventure, even if it certainly wasn’t a perfect one.
Overall, Absolute Tactics: Daughters Of Mercy is a good SRPG that is dragged down by its subpar story. The gameplay here is good and fans of the this genre will find a lot to love here. The story being the way it is really hurts this, since most of these games you are driven to complete the story maps to see how it progresses. The bad writing here makes you not really care halfway through, so it begins to feel tedious. I spent right around 17 hours with this one on normal difficulty, but this will vary depending on the level of difficulty you choose to play on. It’s hard for me to fully recommend this one at the $24.99 price tag, unless you are just a hardcore Strategy RPG fan. That being said, if you snag this one up on sale down the line you will probably find things you enjoy about it.
At the end of the day, Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid: Burst Forth!! Choro-gon☆Breath is a decent title overall. Fans of the series will have a great time with the cast of characters they love, and shmup fans will find some good gameplay to sink their teeth into. I don’t think this one has a ton of depth, but it is fun to play in short bursts, just to see how much you can improve on each stage and boss. Collecting all of the different collectibles is fun and adds a ton of replay value. I do think the $39.99 price tag is a bit much, but if you’re a big fan of the series, you’ll probably be alright with it. Everyone should pick this one up at some point, but maybe when it’s on sale.
Overall, I feel like Dusk Diver 2 is a solid title. There is plenty of great fighting action, the story is entertaining and the game looks great. The only real complaint I have with this one is even if you’re leveled and upgraded properly, some enemies feel like damage sponges. This makes some random encounters drag out a bit too long for my tastes. If you’re a fan of 3D Beat-em-Ups with some good world exploration and fun characters, this one is well worth the $49.99 price tag.
Overall I had a fantastic time with Yurukill: The Calumniation Games. I loved the story, characters, art style, music and the gameplay is some of the best I’ve experienced in a long time. I feel like fans of either of these genres would have a ton a fun with this game. The shmup sections are pretty challenging but there is an easy setting for folks like me that suck at them greatly. You can adjust this to your liking and take them on in higher settings in the challenge mode that features online leaderboards. It took me about 13 hours to complete the story here, but I feel like there is a bit of replay value here just taking on various shooting in the unlocked mode. This one is easy to recommend at that $39.99 price tag and will likely be one of the best and most unique titles released this year.
I didn’t really know what to expect out of Touken Ranbu Warriors, since I knew nothing about this franchise, but what I found here was a very competent Musou game. The missions are fun with just enough variety to keep things interesting. The characters are a lot of fun, and while the combat here is pretty basic, it felt great as fan of this genre. The game looks and runs great on PC, but I think this one might be a little on the easy side for seasoned Warriors players. Though I feel like most of them will enjoy it anyways, since the gameplay is so smooth. You get around 20 hours of story missions here for $59.99, and probably a dozen or so more hours if you want to unlock everything this one has to offer. If you are a fan of Touken Ranbu, then you should probably pick this one up ASAP. There is a lot of fanservice here for you to enjoy from one of your favorite franchises. Fans of Musou games in general should probably give this one a look as well. I know I certainly had a good time with it overall.
Overall, I have to say I had a really good time with Trek to Yomi. The combat was fun, the story was great, and I loved the overall aesthetics here. It was great to explore all the unique areas the game has to offer, discovering interesting collectibles along the way. The game is a bit on the short side at just 7 hours playing on the normal difficulty level, but with multiple endings and challenge levels to choose from, there is plenty of replay value to justify the $19.99 price tag. If you’re a fan of older samurai movies or just love a good sword based action game, you can’t really go wrong with this one.
Overall, Seven Pirates H is a solid release for EastAsiaSoft. There is a great story here with some fun characters, a unique and spicy minigame for fans to enjoy, and the combat is solid as well. The only thing I feel holds this back is its length. I would’ve liked a few more hours with the girls just to flesh out their personalities a bit more. If you liked the previous releases in this series, this is well worth your coin at the $39.99 price tag. Players wanting to jump into these fan service filled beauties are in luck as well, since you need no prior knowledge of the previous releases to have a great time here. Hopefully, if this games does well for EastAsiaSoft, they will consider bringing over the last game in this series, Castles Panzers, at some point down the line.
The Cruel King and the Great Hero is a simple game, but it has a lot of heart. The characters here are wonderful, and they tell a great story with messaging I think we can all appreciate today. I think this one is well worth the $29.99 asking price, even with my few minor complaints. The physical Storybook Edition of this one is great as well. It will set you back $59.99, but it comes with a nice hardcover artbook, a soundtrack download and very cute Yuu Plushie. The artbook is really neat because it has a great design and contains the illustrations you can unlock in game. I am very glad I decided to review this one. I had a lot of fun here, and this wonderful story will stick around with me for a while. If you’re fan of storybook adventures, RPGs or just want a good to experience a good story, this one is well worth your time.
Overall, I felt this was a wonderful Nintendo Switch port. The game runs great, the graphics are good and the inclusion of all the DLC at the $35.99 price tag with the launch discount for this whole package is a great deal. It only takes a few hours to complete one run of Gal*Gun: Double Peace, but there is a lot of replay value here in seeing the story bits for each of the girls, unlocking all the hidden goodies the game has to offer, and there is even a score attack for those looking to challenge their personal best. PQube and Inti Creates have done a great service to Switch gamers by porting the last of this amazing franchise to their console. This gives them a chance to experience the entire Gal*Gun saga for themselves! Now if you will excuse me, there is a cute angel from the first game I must hunt!
At the end of the day, Phantom Breaker: Omnia is a good anime fighter. There are plenty of unique characters to choose from, and even a few special guests from other MAGES titles. I wasn’t really impressed with some of choices made with the subtitles, but this is a minor complaint that doesn’t really take much away from this one. Combat here is simple to pick up and play with enough depth to keep you interested for hours to come. There are plenty of modes to mess around with offline, as well as some online modes to take on your friends. If you’re a fan of anime style fighters, at the $39.99 price tag, you should probably give this one a go. I feel like there is enough meat here to keep you entertained for hours. If you are new to fighting games, this may be a good title to start with, since it isn’t overly complicated to play, but it is a lot of fun.
Infernax is one of the best indie games I’ve played in a long time. It’s a great throwback to not only Castlevania 2, but other great NES games from my childhood as well. The gameplay here is solid, the story is fun and humorous, and there are plenty of extra goodies to keep players coming back for more. The game is a bit on the difficult side, but there are plenty of fun options to play the game as you want to. Infernax can be completed in about 4 hours, but with all the extra endings, the replay value here is high. I feel like this one is well worth the $19.99 asking price for anyone who loves games in this style, or older gamers looking for a throwback from their childhood.
Without a doubt, Atelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dream is one of my favorite releases of this year. The graphics are top notch, gameplay is great, and the soundtrack is simply amazing. The story here is what I love the most. This is a positive story that is pure JRPG comfort food, and damn if we all don’t need some comfort right now. I was a little worried when this was announced and about how a follow up to Sophie would work, and I can safely say, I was worried for nothing. The game retails for $59.99, and I spent around 56 hours with this one. This a fantastic release in the franchise and a must own for fans. This title is very welcoming to newcomers as well, so if you never picked up one of these great JRPGs, now is a good time to jump in.
Overall, while I felt Martha is Dead was a decent experience, I don’t think it’s for everyone. There are a lot of disturbing themes and images in this one that would certainly turn off some players. While the team did a great job crafting this world and the sound design is top notch, some of the gameplay elements need a bit more polish. That being said, this is still a unique experience that fans of these types of games would likely really enjoy.
I have mixed feelings about The Dead Tree of Ranchiuna. I like the environments and sound design, but I feel like a game in this genre should really have a gripping story. The game just didn’t deliver for me in this area, but I can’t say I wouldn’t try out another walking simulator if I thought the story might fit my tastes better.
I have to say, I had a lot of fun with Dynasty Warriors 9 Empires. The level of customization here is crazy, the political parts of the game are easy to understand, it’s fun to stroll around with officers, and the combat here is great. I feel like if I were playing this on a higher difficulty the strategy part would get insane, but there are a few different levels to choose from. This means every player can adjust this until it feels right to them. It took me around 10 hours to do one campaign and see a good bit of the events this one has to offer. There is still plenty of gameplay on the table here for me. If you are fan of these games, this one would certainly be worth the $59.99 asking price. There is a lot of meat here to keep players happy for a long time. If you want a graphically stunning version, the Switch version probably isn’t the way to go, but it runs well enough that if you want to have it on the go, it certainly isn’t a bad choice.
At the end of the day, Queeny Army is a decent retro style shooter held back by a few design choices. The game is still a decent value at just $4.99 on the Switch, and if you can overlook some of the frustrating design choices here, there is some fun to be had. Each of the ladies having their own story adds quite a bit of replay value, so if this is your type of game, there is plenty of bang for your buck here. I just feel like the frustration level outweighs the fun for me, but to each their own. I’m sure some of you out there will quite enjoy this.
SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters’ Clash is an average card battler. It is really easy to pick up and play with a little depth, but I feel like some of the mechanics here hold it back a bit. At the $7.99 price tag, I feel like it is a good deal for those looking for something to just pick up and play on the go. I played right around eight hours and there were still plenty of cards left for me to hunt down on this one. I feel like fans of card battlers will have some fun here, even with the flaws. Hardcore SNK and Capcom fans will likely want to snag this one up as well. If for nothing else than to see the pixel art of their favorite characters battle it out.
Shin Megami Tensei V is, without a doubt, my favorite game of the mainline series. I love the demon interactions and the fun combat system, and the world they created to explore is simply amazing. I played the game on Normal difficulty, but there are easier and more challenging ones that players can choose from to fit their skill level. There is more than enough content here to justify the $59.99 price tag. This is a great entry for newcomers and old fans alike and no one should sleep on it.