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Josh Speer

Mercer Island

Favorite Games:
  • Castlevania Symphony of the Night
  • Eternal Darkness
  • The Binding of Isaac

189 games reviewed
75.7 average score
80 median score
83.6% of games recommended

Josh Speer's Reviews

I've been a game fan for years, but since 2013 I've been writing about them. Love retro and indie, but willing to tackle most genres. Champion of PAX West and lover of SIX.
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Jun 21, 2021

ENDER LILIES: Quietus of the Knights is one of the best Metroidvanias I’ve played. Sure, it’s challenging, but also well balanced and fair. When you add stunning artwork, captivating music and a touching story, you have a winner.

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4 / 5.0 - Mighty Goose
Jun 4, 2021

I truly enjoyed this opportunity to review Mighty Goose. Though the game veered just shy of perfection, it’s still a very worthy and enjoyable action platformer. I spent a handful of hours beating the game, and even then, I have a few extra things I want to unlock. While I do think it would have benefitted from minor improvements and wish it had some additional modes to keep me playing, it’s still a ton of fun. This is the perfect start to the Summer gaming season. Now I’ll just wait with bated breath for Blastmode to announce they’re working on an even bigger sequel!

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3 / 5.0 - Sludge Life
Jun 2, 2021

I think that Sludge Life is a great example of video games as art. It’s much more concerned with sharing its style than being a cohesive whole. Which isn’t to say it’s all nonsense, I don’t think it is. But what it actually is? That’s entirely up to your interpretation.

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4 / 5.0 - Maneater
May 25, 2021

Maneater was worth the wait on Nintendo Switch. It’s not a perfect game, but it’s a hell of a lot of fun. It’s the murderous Ecco the Dolphin I didn’t realize I always needed. If you’re a stickler for graphics, you might prefer playing it on another console. But for playing a hungry shark on the run, there’s nothing better. Here’s hoping this isn’t the last we see from Tripwire in this delightfully demented new IP.

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3.5 / 5.0 - R-Type Final 2
May 9, 2021

In the end, I’m not sure we needed another R-Type, but I still enjoyed R-Type Final 2. For your money, you get a ton of content and lots of challenge. While I still fervently hope they patch the issues I pointed out, such as the unskippable intro and end credits, the base game is still solid. If you’re an Irem fanboy that is looking for the next great shmup, this is probably a safe choice.

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3.5 / 5.0 - New Pokémon Snap
May 7, 2021

Despite my issues with the game, I really did enjoy New Pokémon Snap. Even after completing the game’s storyline, there’s still a ton more to do after the credits roll. To this old Pokémon fan, this is a must-own title. If you love photographing wild creatures and exploring a vibrant new region, this is the game for you. And if you really want to feel like you’re a budding photographer, play the game using the optional motion controls, swinging the Switch around like a giant camera. Now to spend hours and hours more to fill out my Photodex and unearth all the secrets of the Lental region!

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May 1, 2021

I may have been uncertain at the start whether or not I would enjoy Devil Slayer Raksasi, but in the end, it’s actually one of the best rogues I’ve played in a long while. While graphically, it may not shatter anyone’s expectations, and the music is generally pretty muted, it does so much more right in how it plays. Coupled with an interesting premise, mysterious robed overlords, demon hybrids, and monsters, and you end up with a really satisfying indie game. I’m definitely impressed and look forward to future projects from GlassesCatGames.

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4 / 5.0 - Fez
May 1, 2021

Ultimately, I have more positive things than negative to say about FEZ. Sure it can be cumbersome and confusing at times, but it’s still a beautiful and creative game. It’s nice I was finally able to play this one-time exclusive on a Nintendo console. And though I didn’t 100% beat the game, I at least got one of the endings before writing this up. Now armed with my cool shades, I might be able to find the other hidden 32 cubes and maybe learn the true secrets underpinning the world of FEZ. If you enjoy puzzles, platformers, and indies, I’d definitely give this one a shot. Just don’t be ashamed if you need to consult a couple of guides online.

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Mar 18, 2021

Overall, I’m still pretty happy with Bravely Default II. I’ve been waiting for this game for a while now, and I’d say it mostly lived up to my expectations. There’s everything I love about the series here, from the characters to the challenging bosses to the well-organized systems. Sure, it’s mostly a linear experience, but there’s enough variety and sidequests to keep things fresh. And like any good Bravely Default game, there’s a handful of big twists to shock and amaze you.

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Mar 12, 2021

If you’re a fan of roguelikes and want to try your hand at something reminiscent of Indiana Jones, Curse of the Dead Gods might be your game. For everyone else, it’s best to avoid entering this deadly temple of ancient horrors.

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