Morteshka’s deal with the devil has paid off, as Black Book delivers a captivating story and engaging gameplay full of strategy and variety that should keep you busy for over 40 hours. Being in league with Satan usually comes with a great price, but players should be able to overcome any curses handed down to them. With strong character development and narrative, this wicked book is a page-turner that’s worth a read.
Chernobylite is a solid game with a thoughtful story, enjoyable characters, memorable scares, and amazing design. You have freedom in the directions you want to go with crafting and leveling up, and the narrative choices you make feel meaningful. The game keeps you constantly engaged, as it always feels like there’s an important mission to complete or something to take care of around the base. The mystery is fascinating all the way to the end, and the main narrative doesn’t overstay its welcome, feeling spot on at a tight 20-ish hours.
Solasta: Crown of the Magister takes the mantle of the “most” Dungeons & Dragons video game out there, if not quite the best. Though the game has a modular adventure setup that strongly suggests there will be more stories, this one falls too flat for its 40- to 50-hour length. However, the combat system is merely a few tweaks short of perfection, so I’d still be interested in sending my heroes on another adventure in the realm of Solasta.
Outriders makes for a solid, if slightly underwhelming, experience. Several elements left me scratching my head, and there are some bizarre glitches. But going god-mode with your abilities is good fun, even if battles can feel repetitive. Your enjoyment of the game will stretch further if you have a buddy or two to bring along with you for the (out)ride. People Can Fly threw a lot at the wall, and some of it definitely stuck. With DLC and updates surely to come, the Outriders crew will hopefully hone its focus on the parts that work. There is a solid core already, but I hope Square Enix and People Can Fly will take steps to freshen up the gameplay and story so the momentum doesn’t die out the way humans did back on Earth so long ago.
The Falconeer absolutely has its high points, and all of the elements of a great game are there. It’s just disappointing that they don’t gel enough to be wholly satisfying. Visually, the game is stunning, without caveat. The combat can be exhilarating … at its best. The story can be interesting, even fascinating … sometimes. The game’s heights are extreme, but so are its lulls.