Alex de Freitas
Ultimately Space Crew does have some notable moments and gameplay ideas, and it’s astounding that Runner Duck, a very small team, developed a game of this scale. But the core gameplay loop loses its luster far too quickly and drags on for far too long to give a full throated recommendation. That’s not to say this game doesn’t have its place; if you’re interested in space sims, but the complexity or difficulty of other games in the genre has put you off, then Space Crew may be for you. If you’re a vet of the genre looking for another dazzling adventure, though, then stay far, far away.
HyperBrawl's beat-'em-up-meets-sports gameplay is frantic fun that leads to tense matches and clutch moments. The progression means that you have things to work toward if enticed, but the lack of story and multiplayer options may limit your willingness to get too invested. Still, developer Milkytea has something special here in the core gameplay for those that are interested; that interest just may be short lived.
I really enjoyed my time with TENS! as a casual palette cleanser between bigger releases, and it's convenient to be able to quickly pull it up on my Switch whenever I feel the itch to play a puzzle or two. It's not hard in the slightest, though the later puzzles in the campaign may have tripped me up a couple of times; I never felt like I was hitting a wall. Instead TENS! delivers relaxing puzzle gameplay that is just engaging enough to have your attention without ever pushing you to the point of frustration.
There are moments where YesterMorrow's tight controls, level design, and artstyle all come together and shine. Unfortunately, the mountain of technical issues and the empty world eclipse any hints of excellence. At the end of the day, YesterMorrow is an incomplete, broken game, and broken games are neither for yesterday or tomorrow.
Once I got over the initial hump and learned its systems, Evolution genuinely surprised me with its depth of strategy and breadth of content. The Switch version leaves a lot to be desired in terms of performance, and for now, despite my usual misgivings of the platform, I'd honestly recommend the mobile version. But if Evolution wants to survive on Switch in the wilds of the eShop, it would be wise to take a queue from nature and find a way to adapt.
Perhaps I've been spoiled by modern games that built upon this predecessor, perhaps it was the clunky translation to console, or perhaps it was simply my impatience with the frequent loading times. Whatever the reason, this legend of the genre fell well below my expectations. If you are a fan of the original game, then by all accounts this remaster does wonders for the visuals and would probably be an easy recommendation. In this case, do yourself at least the favor of avoiding it on Switch.
And yet I still can't shake the feeling that Fuga could have been so much more if it cut back on the boring base building and truly committed to a tone that the premise deserves. If a solid linear RPG that can be beaten in under 20 hours is something you're in the market for or if you're curious about the successor to Solatorobo then Fuga is at least worth a look. But if your interest was piqued by the trailer or heard the premise of children, war, and permadeath; then you should know there is a lot less here than you may have initially thought.
I've come across a bug where I couldn't move a unit during a turn multiple times, and loading times between chapters lasted much longer than expected for a game of this scope. Music lacks oomph during battles and the level up sound is more of a whimper than a fanfare. This severe lack of polish does not eclipse the brilliance peaking through but it does dim it.
When something beloved has been lost for so long, it's hard to not cling to any and every bit you can get in fear that it will be torn away from you yet again. Ultimately I'm just thankful for the chance that we have now to wipe the decades-old dust from these hidden gems. Maybe, if only for a moment, not so hidden anymore.