Two dimensional (2D) isometric titles have become incredibly common in recent years. Titles like Diablo, Gears Tactics, Bastion, Hades, and various Super Mario Role-playing Games, have proliferated the market and created certain expectations for the genre. Beautiful Desolation meets and exceeds what to expect from these kinds of games, and subsequently elevates the genre to new heights. It does so with a story imbued with alien technologies and time travelling elements, and further raises the bar for what should be expected from South African developed titles. The game is exceptional in many ways, and is a must play title.
Space Commander: War and Trade has a lot of promise. Unfortunately, it is let down by the extremely obvious nature of its mobile game heritage. Sure, this may not be the exact same game that launched on mobile platforms years ago, but it certainly feels like it in terms of gameplay and features. Space commander: War and Trade is by no means a bad game; but it does fall short in terms of what is expected from 4X games — even on Nintendo Switch.
Dude, Where is my Beer? serves as a quaint little adventure into the world of the hipster. It is about being a parched foreigner in an era of craft brews, and one who just wants another taste of a ‘nostalgic pilsner’. The game has a few odd, yet forgivable, design decisions; but offers a lot of enjoyment as compensation. It is also short and extremely beautiful, which helps a lot with the unique feel. Ultimately, guiding the dude around puzzles and unique bars is good fun and provides a solid experience for a small indie title.
While the franchise is much more deserving of a remake than a remaster, the Mass Effect Legendary Edition still manages to deliver the most wonderful amount of fixes and changes, bringing the games [mostly] in line with more modern titles. With the studio now working on a fifth mainline entry in the franchise, there is nothing better to tide players over than this all encompassing package. For old fans, seeing Tali, Wrex, Garrus, and the others again in high-fidelity graphics is nothing short of amazing. New players, on the other hand, can now go through the franchise in a much more accessible manner, enabling an entirely new generation to pick up the game and learn of the badass that is Shepard — their Shepard. The games (especially the first) are nowhere near perfect, but they are still as memorable, enjoyable and epic as ever. The Mass Effect Legendary Edition is good and anyone who can get past the admittedly dated Mass Effect 1 experience, will discover one of the greatest space operas ever created.
All of the improvements to the franchise in MotoGP 21, make the title one of the best motorsport simulation games currently available. While not perfect, the enhancements Milestone have added to the title help elevate it above the competition, making the game an easy choice when offering recommendations to simulation enthusiasts. The new additions together with the sublime visuals, work together to offer gamers a package that truly brings the franchise into the next generation.
Capcom Arcade Stadium does a wonderful job of preserving some history defining titles for new generations to enjoy. It is a robust package with a large number of options for all kinds of gamers. The games themselves may have been modernised quite a lot, but they still look and feel distinctly ‘old’. Games are essentially classic in all but features, and this is possibly the most enchanting aspect of the collection.
Resident Evil Village is both the eighth mainline entry in the long running franchise and also marks the license’s 25th anniversary, and what a fitting celebration it is. From bringing back fan favourite characters to introducing new and memorable ones; taking players to supernatural-laden and ravaged locales that have been pulled straight out of fairy tales, and even giving players who do not play horror games a good entry point; Resident Evil Village does not disappoint. There is simply so much to do, players will likely jump right back in with a New Game Plus not long after the credits have rolled and the twists have been realised. Sadly the game feels much shorter than it rightfully needs to be, but this is only thanks to the subject material at hand – which players will certainly see more of in downloadable content down the road. There is no other way to say it: the game is, truly, very good.
At first glance, Outriders may not seem like the kind of game suited to many third-person shooters and cover-shooter players. Given time to reach and be immersed in the game’s best features, however, will showcase incredibly well-written characters, great gunplay, and good RPG-light elements – all of which allow Outriders to stand as one of the better looter-shooters currently available. The game has no hints at all of a live service title, which is a huge breath of fresh air, and has a campaign that is decidedly single-player focused – a rarity these days. All of these facets come together to create the title that is Outriders, and it is great. Sure, there are a few things the game can improve upon, but as far as modern looter-shooters go, Outriders is very good and worth it for the long haul.
There are a lot of things Biomutant does exceptionally well, and one or two aspects that do need a bit of work. Needless to say, the game is a whole lot of fun. From its charming narration to its dark yet beautiful world – the pretty vistas and horrific oil-pits – and even its world-building characteristics showcasing where conflict has been taking place; the game is a joy to play and be immersed in. Player progression is vast and works incredibly well to make players feel powerful, while the game continually throws challenges at players to keep things interesting. There are a large number of puzzles, all of which unlock fancy new gear or crafting materials (the latter of which does need a bit of work), and the Wung-fu is an extremely neat little addition to the mix. All-in-all, players who liked Immortals Fenyx Rising will feel right at home with Biomutant. It is beyond charming and more than worth a play.
As an expansion, Wrath of the Druids is extremely good. It adds so much wonderful content to Assassin’s Creed Valhalla that it makes it extremely easy to overlook the few small oddities it brings along. The story is, without a doubt, the strongest facet of Wrath of the Druids. While it may feel a bit short (coming in at around fifteen hours), it does take Evior across the majority of Ireland by means of an engrossing story arc. It also lets players soak up all of the lusciousness of the green and rainy Irish countryside, and hosts a vast number of beautiful vistas to enjoy and get lost in. Lastly, The Children of Danu are a cool new faction adding much-needed flavour to a world previously dominated by the usual bandit or Dane infested roads of England – the new gear is pretty awesome to collect too. Wrath of the Druids feels like Ubisoft tried to one-up Fate of Atlantis, while simultaneously keeping unnecessary waffling in the narrative to a minimum – thus enhancing everything else the expansion has to offer. It is an absolute must-play for all gamers who enjoy Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.