Last Train Home is great for those who want to maliciously plan everything else and manage a spreadsheet of resources and logistics. Things will be taken slowly, almost at a snail’s pace, to avoid roadblocks. Those who want to rush into action will likely quickly kill the entire Czechoslovakian Legion. This can easily accumulate with loading back dozens of hours if you can even figure out which save file that was.
Steamworld Build has reasonable, average length load times when first starting up. It is impressive that it is seamless to switch between map times with no slowdown or bugs. However, outright crashing is still possible. This tends to happen when first opening a map or exiting back to the main menu. SteamWorld Build is a great sequel for those who liked the previous games in the series.
Worldless has a great premise and presentation. But it's clear that it's a console-first game and that putting it on a PC is an afterthought. If you enjoy the exploration aspects of Metroid and Castlevania games, you will find a lot to enjoy. However, several combat balances need to be implemented, including an easy skill refund, additional skill points, and a design native to the PC platform.
For The King II is very much a board game more than it is an RPG adventure or grand strategy. You should be fully prepared that slots are just random dice rolls that can lead to chaotic events and outcomes. Treat the game as short fun sessions to play with friends rather than a serious ongoing campaign. Just remain aware that you and your associates will need to own four copies.
Moonstone Island is mostly frustrating and has little fun to it. There are too many time restrictions, almost as if the developers were unsure if it should be a survival simulator or a causal sandbox. The card-based battles make fights a slog, especially when you can’t properly build a deck without using consumables. Moonstone Island is mostly for those who want challenging and obtuse grinds. Maybe Studio Supersoft is making more balancing changes, as the team is very responsive on both Discord and the Steam forums.
Boti: Byteland Overclocked isn’t a massive grand adventure but a short and sweet romp through more concise levels. You should treat it more like the 3D stages of Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time than an open sprawl like Super Mario Odyssey. Unlike those single-player games, Boti: Byteland Overclocked is very much balanced around two-player functionality.
F1 Manager 2023 is a neat take on the sports management genre. It has enough systems and complexity to appeal to anyone that got a kick out of the Football Manager series. However, it seems like the series is poised to be an annual title. It may be that consumers will soon just be paying for different rosters and scenarios rather than updated gameplay.
Blackout Protocol currently suffers from many symptoms of other online-first games. It needs a large player base to function, yet the developers are stifling the community from growing organically. It runs the major risk of being yet another Blightbound - a nearly dead-on-arrival multiplayer game that failed to resuscitate. However, Ocean Drive Studios can perhaps turn things around by taking player feedback seriously. Those interested in Blackout Protocol should monitor the ongoing Early Access development and make a call on when they are ready to jump in.
Trepang2 plays things rather safely. It isn’t going to throw out sudden curve balls – or at least not succeed in its attempt. Still, what is presented is masterfully done. Fans of 20 year old shooters will get a thrill for 8-20 hours or more. However, Trepang2 isn’t any sort of gateway into the genre and converts people who are used to modern shooter mechanics like regenerating health or aiming down the sights.
Railway Empire 2 adds a lot of nice features and quality of life over the first title. Diehard fans of train simulators will get a kick out of the game and shouldn’t hesitate about considering a purchase. Still, for those new to the genre, it can be a bit overwhelming to grasp all of the logistics and years of planning to create a multinational business.
Friends vs Friends has a good foundation and concepts that could make for a quirky shooter. But it needs many further patches that change combat balance, progression, and an introduction of new features and modes. Currently, this feels like an Early Access game, which needs additional work. Those with three or more friends who are interested should consider purchasing multiple copies or hold off on Friends vs Friends entirely.
Mia and the Dragon Princess is really only for the most diehard interactive FMV game fans. Even if one loves the rest of the Wales Interactive library, the game’s story is just a glaring oversight that brings down all of the great acting. Players will want to wait for a sale or bundle or to look for other game options in the meantime.
This Land is My Land is a slow-paced game and has thrilling payoffs, but even after many hours, it may still not be intuitive enough. Those seeking a deep survival game could consider picking it up - as long as they are fine with possibly losing hard-earned save data.
One should highly consider Tortuga – A Pirate’s Tale if they what a mix of high adventure, tough combat, exploration, and logistical management. Its presentation is rather confusing and nearly recycled from the older version of Port Royal. Still, it can be a very fun experience once learning the ropes.
IXION can be extremely overwhelming and punishes players for not having nearly precognition levels of foresight. Still, once these roadblocks are understood and avoided, the game can become an excellent and welcome challenge. IXION is defiantly for survival fans first, while city planners may find things a bit more aggravating.
Wavetale is impressive and extremely fun for those who enjoy high-speed traversal. It lacks challenge when it comes to combat, but it also means it doesn’t take much to return to exploration. There is a lot of extra stuff to do besides the main story, though it only results in more cosmetics. Those looking for a rather casual adventure game will love Wavetale.
New Joe and Mac: Caveman Ninja is just for the desperate who want the same old-school gameplay. Those that have never ventured into the series might not find anything special or unique about this remake. Regardless, any that consider buying the game should highly consider at least an initial price reduction or maybe new updates, if ever.
This port of As Far As The Eye does very little to make use of the PlayStation 4. The game itself has some fun ideas, and those that enjoy exploration and gathering aspects of simulation games like Civilization or Starcraft will find some enjoyment. Still, if possible, one should go for the Steam or Epic Store PC release if they have that option.
Land of the Vikings has a great premise and much potential to become a stand-out city builder. However, it still is several patches away from becoming a noteworthy classic. Lap Games absolutely needs to improve the game’s performance and add many more quality-of-life features. Diehard fans can still consider Land of the Vikings while it is in Early Access.
Asterix & Obelix XXXL: The Ram From Hibernia doesn’t do much to stand out. It can provide similar action to those that have already gone through all of the other Asterix and Obelix action games. Even then, those interested should consider a price drop from the current $30 price. For new players, one should, at minimum play Asterix and Obelix XXL Romastered and Asterix and Obleix XXL 2: Mission Las Vegum first before considering this spiritual sequel.