Blue Reflection: Second Light improves on almost every aspect of the original, with a mystery that feels more personal as the characters become closer. The relationship between the girls as they seek to discover why they were brought to this strange world is the star of the show; though the combat is fun, it is always a vehicle to get you more story rather than the driving force of the game. Second Light is a fantastic-looking anime adventure that you'll love, so long as you can accept that combat isn't the focus.
Ghost of Tsushima may or may not be the game of the year for a lot of people. Between the stunning visuals, solid story and characters, and one of the best uses of the open world framework I’ve seen, it is a strong contender for me, even in a year that has included some fantastic releases.
Overall, this is definitely a game for fans of the original. However, Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity still delivers the fun action of Dynasty Warriors is known for while looking and feeling like a true prequel to Breath of the Wild, which is not an easy feat.
Between the surprisingly deep plot for such a simple game, the clever narrative explanation of the mechanics, and enough chaos going on in the discussions to keep you guessing, we had a lot of fun with this one. Gnosia's simple game mechanics and deceptively deep story make it a must-have for visual novel and murder mystery fans; it's just a shame that the music is so poor. Even so, if you give it a chance it's highly likely that you'll fall in love with each member of its diverse cast – just in time for them to kill you.
Love Esquire is a straightforward and fun visual novel/dating sim with simple but effective design and gameplay, surprisingly strong production values, and a fantastic voice cast. This isn't a game trying to push the boundaries when it comes to inclusivity, but it is an enjoyable romp and a relatively 'safe' introduction to the genre for those unfamiliar with its tropes.
Root Film builds off of what its predecessor did well while managing to feel very distinct and more grown-up than Root Letter. The Switch version's portability makes it much easier to get those hours in than the PS4 version, but those who weren't fans of Root Letter or who are on the fence might want to wait until a sale or pick up the digital version of the game. For fans of murder mysteries, there are plenty of cases to get stuck into and rich locations to explore. We think it is worth the full price but can't blame people for being put off by the hefty price tag.
Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot might not do much more than retelling the story of Dragon Ball, but it does that well enough that existing fans will find joy in exploring the world and fighting iconic villains from the franchise. Despite the lack of depth to its combat and a minor internet-based technical inconvenience to work around, the game saves itself by expanding on the already massive amount of Dragon Ball lore available and giving fans the slice-of-life moments we've so sorely needed. Non-fans won't find much to love here, but it's a more than serviceable retelling of an iconic story.