Treachery In Beatdown City well surpassed my expectations. I was skeptical of the combat system and how long it could hold my interest, but after nearly six hours I find myself wanting the second episode to drop the moment I finish typing this review. It scales up nicely in difficulty and sprinkles in new moves, new enemies and new tactics at just the right rate to keep things interesting the whole way through. I’m usually the “wait for a sale” type and not keen on episodic games, particularly ones that cost $20 on the Nintendo eShop, but even if the second episode somehow bombed I’d still be happy with what the first delivered. Here’s hoping that wherever the game goes from here, it involves even more fighting and a healthy helping of Farooq’s halal.
All said, for $25 it’s hard to go wrong with Distance. The intensity and challenge are there, but don’t feel overwhelming outside of where it’s expected like, say, in Challenge mode. While the campaign’s attempt at storytelling can be hit or miss, the strength of its gameplay across all modes carries the day for it. Reckless and wild in all the right ways, Distance is the change of pace in racing games I didn’t realize I needed.
Fire Pro Wrestling World has a number of minor, but noticeable flaws in its execution. What saves it from a death-by-a-thousand-cuts scenario is that the creation options and the gameplay (mostly the gameplay) are simply too fun to rate this game anything below above average. While the PC version can be and has been modded to hell and back, the PS4 version is a solid option with a dedicated, creative community behind it. The base game’s asking price is $50, with the season pass for extra content down the line costing another $50. Even without the season pass I’ve more than gotten my fill, clocking in over 35 hours and counting across the whole game. Either tap into that fighting spirit or, as Taka Michinoku says, “Just! Tap! Out!”
It’s safe to say Juggler Games hit their mark with My Memory of Us. I was thoroughly entertained throughout and even as a jaded adult who doesn’t like children, I was completely invested in what happened to the kids and the people around them every step of the way. It’s a bit short, taking less than five hours to finish, but even so I’d still pay the $18 asking price for it. What it may lack in replay value it makes up for in a charming, imaginative world and the struggle of two friends trying to stay together as outside forces seem destined to keep them apart.
As much as I like the world and story of The Coma 2: Vicious Sisters, as well as most of the gameplay, I can’t overlook how much it felt like the game was being padded with fetch quests and picky event triggers. I lasted eight hours on the first go, but had to keep taking breaks every 30-40 minutes or so because I could only do so much backtracking or scanning of every wall in every room for hints before needing to do something, anything else. For those with a higher tolerance for it, the $15 asking price (or about $23 for a deluxe bundle with the artbook, soundtrack and two DLC costumes) should be well worth it. After all, someone needs to help Mina out so she doesn’t have to settle for a disappointing B on her exams. Yes, really.
If this were just a review of the first ninety percent of Unruly Heroes I’d give it a higher score. It’s enjoyable and challenging enough to keep wanting to see what’s next. However, the perfect storm of problems near the end left a bad taste in my mouth. It’s still a fun experience, one that lasted almost seven hours for me, though one that comes with a big asterisk. If having friends along for the ride helps, there is local and online co-op, inexplicably called “Player Vs Player” in-game, for up to four people (though I couldn’t find anyone to try it with). At $20 across all storefronts, I’d recommend it as long as you’re patient enough to make it through the endgame.
It only took me about an hour and a half to finish Classic mode on normal, then another half-hour to get the other secret items and finish the final stage. That doesn’t sound like much, but there’s enough to do in Venture Kid that I played through it a couple times and went through Survival mode too. Also, there’s next to no downtime in this game; it’s almost constant action, and it just feels good to clear a room of spike pits or avoid flame jets and the like. It’s a pleasant retro-styled experience, one worth the $10 price tag if you’re planning to do all there is to do. Whether a veteran of the genre or just getting into it, there’s room for both to enjoy this.
All in all, I spent over 15 hours going from Zama to the farthest reaches of the game’s world and back. It’s extremely ambitious for Kiro’o Games to dive into the deep end with a game of this scope right off the bat, even with the framework they built up from years prior. Aurion: Legacy of the Kori-Odan is a game which shows tremendous heart and dedication to making a legitimately fun and beautiful game, but also some of the pitfalls of a developer’s first big title. That said, in spite of the technical issues, I do recommend playing Aurion. It’s available right now on Steam for $14.99. For those who want more of the lore behind the game, there is also a comic which delves deeper into the game’s events.
I have mixed emotions with Rock of Ages 3: Make & Break. There are nagging technical issues and the game design incorporates a game genre I despise, but I can’t deny how much fun I had with most of it. I got about six hours of entertainment out of the single player campaign alone, close to an hour of which was me begrudgingly playing the modes more focused on tower defense. $30 might be a bit much if you’re like me and aren’t as into the tower defense aspects of the game. If it goes on sale though, go right ahead and be prepared to rock and/or roll.
Colt Canyon does many, many things right. The core gameplay is addictive. The visuals and presentation are wonderful, in spite of brown being the dominant color much of the time. I wasn’t bored for a second. However, I also feel no need to go back to it again, even with the slew of unlockables. Fans of rogue-likes and semi-top-down shooters will likely have no regrets shelling (heh) out $14.99 for this. Perhaps I’m jaded from playing the unpatched version at first, but after riding off into the sunset once, I’m content to drop the six-shooter, rifle, shotgun, bow, knife, and whatever other weapons I found in this game and move on.