Tadpole Treble: Encore feels like a long-lost Nintendo IP from the SNES era. It takes a simple idea and runs (or swims) with it to the fullest extent, providing a large variety of music, locales, and mechanics within its relatively short runtime. There is much love and passion present in nearly every facet of the game, so much so that it's easy to overlook the few flaws that it has. Whether being a fan of rhythm games or not, Tadpole Treble: Encore is a joyful experience that's absolutely worth diving into.
Sam & Max Save the World is notable for starting Telltale's reign over episodic games that lasted for nearly a decade. Upon a revisit, it's easy to understand why. The writing oozes in charm and wit, and solving some of the trickier puzzles requires quite a bit of detective-work. While a few quality-of-life upgrades introduced in later Telltale Games would have been appreciated, the visual enhancements are still welcome. Hopefully, Skunkape Games remasters the other two seasons of Sam & Max, as well, because this is a case that deserves to be revisited for years to come.
Cyber Shadow is not a perfect game; levels occasionally overstay their welcome and the visual variety between locales is quite limited. Still, the core gameplay and design are so polished that it's hard to put down. Nothing feels more satisfying than successfully comboing together Shadow's moves to narrowly survive a perilous set-piece. It learns the best lessons from its classic inspirations while still trying out new things, culminating in a smooth, difficult, and rewarding experience for fans of the genre.
It's rare for a long-running series to disappear for a decade, come back with some fairly dramatic changes, and still come away on top. Any one of these factors would be a death-knell for a worser series, so the fact that this title can balance all of them at once is truly impressive. WarioWare: Get it Together may not seem ambitious at a glance, but at a closer look, the scope is genuinely admirable. Somehow, Intelligent Systems was able to create 200+ microgames that could each be played by 19 characters, without any of these elements feeling bloated or ancillary. Time will tell if this installment remains as beloved as its cult-classic counterparts, but even after one whole week, Cubed3 is not ready to put the game down just yet. Especially when there's still some high scores that need beating!
Worm Jazz isn't an ambitious or largescale title. There's not a large amount of levels, there's no story or context to the gameplay, and there's only a handful of different mechanics, overall. However, it still succeeds in what it sets out to do; the levels are delightfully fun to squirm through, collecting everything requires some real puzzle expertise, and, most of all, the jazz score is simply entrancing. For its price, Worm Jazz on Nintendo Switch is very good value for fans of the puzzle genre, or for anyone seeking a relaxing way to spend a few hours.
Terror Squid may not have much content, but what is there still manages to impress and terrify. The unique, personality-filled take on shmup gameplay truly can't be found anywhere else, despite the minimal variety. Players who enjoy chasing high scores through quick, replayable experiences will find a lot of value in the title. However, those looking for more to do should swim on to less dangerous waters.
Overall, there isn't particularly much to say about Centipede: Recharged. For the most part, it succeeds in what it sets out to do, remastering an old Atari classic with a few neat bells and whistles attached. Items, co-op, challenges, and widescreen are all appreciated additions, but they aren't exactly thrilling, either. There's no big 'sexy' hook for this rerelease-it's Centipede, but better. Nothing more, nothing less. That isn't inherently a bad thing, though. It may not be reviving the IP on a huge scale or drawing in new audiences, but hey, Centipede is fun. A recharged version of it with a few minor upgrades is fun, too.
Picklock has the foundation of a good experience. There are brief moments of actual fun spread throughout, but these are in spite of the game's quirks, not because of it. The awkward controls remove any possible precision, and the sloppy, typo-ridden presentation makes these flaws hard to overlook. With a bit more polish, Picklock could have been a very good stealth title, but as it exists now, players are better off picking a different lock.
Every now and then, the stars will align and Chocobo GP will provide a fun, frantic, and genuinely fantastic race. A rare moment where the track layout isn't too obnoxious, the item RNG isn't too oppressive, and the monetization isn't too distracting; a brief snippet of a solid racer with tight controls and a colorful world. If the game was like this all of the time, there would be no issue, but the ways in which it fumbles before the finish line cannot be overstated. What could have been a solid, long-lasting Mario Kart alternative has already been tossed aside by the masses and forgotten. Maybe Square Enix can fix it, maybe they won't bother, but at this point, not much of value has been lost.