Alex Kidman


18 games reviewed
72.8 average score
70 median score
50.0% of games recommended
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The Monty Mole Collection isn’t extremely expensive, and that’s perhaps its saving grace, because examining its fare won’t set you back a lot. But in the shadow of far superior collections that genuinely pay homage to why retro gaming is so important to not only be preserved but played, this is definitely second-rate. Monty may or may not be innocent, but he deserved better than this.

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I’d kill for a Jackbox Party Pack launcher, from which I could launch whichever games in packs I already owned during gaming sessions, rather than having to both remember which pack they were in and then launch that pack’s interface. In fact, I’d pay for just that alone, Jackbox Games. How about it?

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Jun 28, 2023

There’s room for improvement, and it’ll be interesting to see how that takes shape, given that they’ve said the plan is not for annual sports game style releases, but instead iterative development over many years. Maybe adding in a cage match, smoothing out some of the games’ slightly rougher animations, even if they are hand-drawn, and adding commentary would be good for a start. Yes, I know, I’m asking for them to add in even more DLC, but it seems like that’s what they actively want to do here, and it might just be the right approach for the challenger brand.

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Jun 20, 2023

I can see what they were going for with Park Beyond, and they did get achingly close to it, but right now, and at least in its console variant, it’s not quite a recommended game without a little bug stomping and AI fine tuning. Also an option to switch on total bastard mode, so I can be the truly evil park operator of my dreams wouldn’t go astray, Limbic Entertainment. Just a thought, you understand.

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Puzzle Bobble Everybubble! is a good game, and it’s absolutely fine fare if you don’t already own a version of Taito’s venerable series. The new quirks don’t break anything fundamental, and that’s for the best in terms of maintaining series quality. At the same time, the new modes don’t add a lot.

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Mar 21, 2023

I don’t watch traditional sports to speak of, but I do watch a lot of pro wrestling, precisely because it’s staged and allows for stronger narratives than you can get out of a simple sports match. Getting all of that into a video game is a tall order, and WWE 2K23 comes very close in most respects to making that happen. It’s fun, mostly fluid and packed with content… as long as you ignore the money-making My Faction mode entirely.

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If you don’t, it’s a very good shmup, if not one of the most complex out there in terms of gameplay mechanics. You’re still ultimately chasing a high score and not much else – and I didn’t appreciate that the default high scores were set pathetically low, because I’d rather have something to chase from the get-go. Still, I am a bit of a Raiden tragic, so in that frame at least, this is definitely a top game – for me.

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Still, I’d suggest you check your games shelf and work out which of these titles you really want and need. I can’t quite see the point in buying the regular collection now that this Anniversary Collection is more widely available, but it’s equally not going to thrill you quite as much unless you’ve got a particular passion for games that you already own.

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Not every Atari game stands up today as a playable masterpiece, and that’s just fine. Atari 50: The Anniversary Celebration provides just about the best contextually driven system for playing and appreciating classic retro games that I’ve ever hit, and it’s an absolute must-have for any gamer of any age. I mean, Tempest 2000 is worth the price of admission alone, but along the way, you’ll learn a lot about gaming history, gaming development and even the weird and wonderful deals and dodgy antics that Atari got up to in its golden age.

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection does right by the retro collection format, although at around $60-$70, even for digital, it’s on the pricier side, which won’t sit well with too many gamers, I suspect. That’s a pity, because it’s the kind of historical approach to curation that I wish more companies would take seriously.

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Aug 11, 2022

Cult of the Lamb never takes itself too seriously, so it remains fun through its relatively short initial playtime.

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Mar 21, 2022

I don’t want to spoil anything, but simply saying “Greek Tragedy” covers a lot, if you follow me. Clearly, you’re going to get the most out of Sokobos if you already love Sokoban as a core concept, but I could have wished for a slightly deeper story behind it all.

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Dec 22, 2021

The oddity here is that while it's a "full" Switch release, it's still listed as an Early Access title on Steam. The three-person team putting Dungeon Munchies together could still tighten up that platforming aspect, and I really hope they do. Dungeon Munchies won't appeal to everyone, but it's precisely the kind of small indie gaming idea that would never get large traction with a bigger publisher.

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This then is the challenge with Jurassic World Evolution 2. If you're a Jurassic Film fan who also likes micromanagement, there's certainly enough meat on its dinosaur bones to keep you happy for a good long while. However, if you're more just a management sim fan, you'll probably find its quirky management style – sometimes hands-on, sometimes hands-off – a tad irritating, as well as the limitations of its console controls.

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Oct 5, 2021

Actraiser Renaissance, however, is a remake that should have simply stuck to the basics that made Actraiser great. Instead, what you get are moments of greatness broken up by far too many moments of mediocrity.

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Variety in stories and settings could have gone a long way to making Siege Survival Gloria Victis a more compelling game. As it stands, while those who enjoy a mix of strategy and deliberately melancholy narrative threads may find it engaging for a while, it’s all a bit too uneven to really recommend.

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When Evil Genius 2 gets it right, it gets it spectacularly right, and if you’re the type that can bury your brain into resource management while laughing at the deliberately cliched and over-the-top style of the game, you’ll have plenty of moments of fun taking over the world, one carved-out-of-mountain-rock room at at time. However, there’s still some rough edges here, and some game balancing that could have made it even more engaging, both for those who adore resource management and those who might just like the challenge of taking over the world with the help of a few shiny new doomsday devices.

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Is Ghosts ‘n Goblins Resurrection for everyone? No, it most definitely is not. It’s a very deliberate game that demands to be played on its own terms. That means accepting Arthur’s slower, more deliberate movements, the realities of a single jump, fixed arc system for platforming, and a brutal difficulty curve that rewards patient play, all the while gently mocking you when you cross one threshold only to be ground into a fine paste by the very next trap.

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