Will Silberman


106 games reviewed
83.4 average score
85 median score
68.6% of games recommended
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Dec 14, 2023

Call it refined nostalgia. Call it a love letter to Metroid Fusion and other Game Boy Advance metroidvanias. Call it what you want. 9 Years of Shadows is a good, short, yet approachable metroidvania. While it doesn’t quite hit the depth of combat complexity and story beats of its GBA predecessors, it overdelivers via gorgeous pixel art and an orchestrated soundtrack. Its Nintendo Switch port is not the best in its current state, but it’s worth playing if you’re wanting a metroidvania to play on a lazy Sunday.

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7 / 10.0 - Spirittea
Nov 21, 2023

Spirittea is the farming sim with Miyazaki vibes I've wanted for a hot minute. It doesn't onboard the player in the most intuitive fashion, so it's a smidge hard to pick up to get into the groove. But, once you've managed to parse through the disparate tea leaves that make up its multiple activities and mechanics, it's worth a try. I'm looking forward to seeing how Spirittea evolves in the future while I enjoy its coziness this holiday season.

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8.5 / 10.0 - The Last Faith
Nov 16, 2023

The Last Faith is a grueling metroidvania, leaning into pinnacle souls-like gameplay elements that reward exploration, precision, and patience. Its combat may be simple and fun, but the challenge of mastering its traversal may be too much to handle. Its gorgeous visuals might not be distinct enough to separate itself from the pack of its predecessors, but it's a great start for those wanting to test the waters of the souls genre.

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9.5 / 10.0 - Astral Ascent
Nov 14, 2023

Astral Ascent is the roguelite I've been wishing to play for a hot minute. Its combat is highly variable, incredibly replayable, and quite gorgeous. It's a fantastic example of a roguelite that is easy to pick up, fun to return to, and rewarding despite losing early and often.

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8.5 / 10.0 - Blasphemous 2
Nov 7, 2023

Blasphemous 2 felt incredibly good to play despite its challenging nature and complex combat. It's a great Soulslike 2D action-platformer that doesn't rely on nonsense gimmicks that make the game artificially difficult for the sake of being punishing. Its exploration, art direction, and worldbuilding are unmatched in a sea of modern Metroidvanias released in 2023. If you're down for a good challenge or path of penitence in a Roman Catholic-inspired 2D platformer, look no further. Like it or not, you will pay for your gameplay sins.

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Nov 6, 2023

Killing spiders is incredibly easy – Kill It With Fire VR makes it fun. Scratch that – it makes it dumb fun. Despite the jump scares and spiders, I kept myself fully entertained because of the sheer number of ridiculous things I could use to kill spiders. If a book from the shelf wasn't enough, maybe a shotgun would do the trick. No dice? Shurikens. No? Fine. Flamethrower. That'll work. Some of its controls lack explanation and its features could be better explained. Once you figure it out, Kill It With Fire VR lends itself for a fun afternoon VR experience or party game if you want to mess around with some friends.

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Nov 2, 2023

Ebenezer and the Invisible World has its moments of fun and rewarding exploration through completing optional sidequests and finding secrets. It looks great, too. However, its big swings in the form of ghost management and stiff traversal/combat lends to a less than stellar experience. May this experience become better in the future with more time and polish? Absolutely, but it's worth waiting to see what happens.

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9.8 / 10.0 - Dave the Diver
Oct 30, 2023

I wish I didn't have to review Dave the Diver because of how much I worry about letting too much of its best parts slip. It's a fantastic title that's worth "going in blind" simply because of how it continuously surprises players, including me. Its Switch port maintains its greatness, barring some slight visibility issues of the smaller fishies and the loading screens, so it's hard for me to recommend the Switch version if you're deciding on which platform to purchase Dave the Diver. However, one thing is certain: You should not miss out on Dave the Diver this holiday season. It's a pearl in an ocean of other holiday AAA titles vying for your attention.

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Oct 24, 2023

If you're wanting to expand your musical tastes or play some more of Invector: Rhythm Galaxy, I recommend that you get at least one of its song packs. The Spinnin' pack is more for EDM folks, whereas Latin Power contains great choices for those interested in reggaeton/Latin pop music. I'm a smidge disappointed that the packs only contain music and not much else, but hey – the tracks themselves are excellent candidates for a rhythm game and will assuredly join your "on repeat" playlist this holiday season.

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8.8 / 10.0 - Sonic Superstars
Oct 13, 2023

Sonic Superstars has shaped up to be a Sonic game that is reminiscent of the Genesis days yet futureproofed for newer players to enjoy. It's in no way a perfect Sonic game, but it's a fantastic reinvigoration of some of the best facets of the Sonic series thus far.

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7.8 / 10.0 - Long Gone Days
Oct 10, 2023

Long Gone Days makes an incredibly easy recommendation for those wanting a narrative-forward and cerebral RPG that will make you feel emotions along story beats. It excels in storytelling and creating feelings of fear out of a war-torn alternate reality where geopolitical tensions are as equally sensitive as they are now. But, if you want an RPG that encourages thoughtful party management and turn-based combat, you should look elsewhere.

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7.8 / 10.0 - Summum Aeterna
Oct 4, 2023

Summum Aeterna is a good, but slightly difficult, roguelike that takes place in the universe of Aeterna Noctis. While it doesn't fully succeed in its world crawling fantasy of selecting starting biomes with benefits and detriments, it definitely removes much of the roguelike frustrations by giving the player permanent power in many forms. It's a gorgeous roguelike I can see myself returning to just so I can feel powerful, albeit not as powerful as I felt while playing Aeterna Noctis.

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9.3 / 10.0 - Mortal Kombat 1
Sep 28, 2023

Violence has never looked as vivid, gorgeous, and wild as it is in Mortal Kombat 1. Its fighting mechanics remain just as approachable and appealing as prior entries, with one key difference: It's the best-feeling Mortal Kombat I've played thus far. There're some minor quirks that are still being ironed out at the time of writing, but I'm excited, legitimately excited, to see what Netherrealm chooses to add to this game.

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7.5 / 10.0 - AK-xolotl
Sep 13, 2023

AK-xolotl is a difficult yet highly engaging roguelike that will make you fall in love with its charming woodland creatures while laughing at its absurd violence. Seeing my goofy little AK-xolotl with a giant gun made me grin from ear to ear. It's the roguelike fever dream I've always wanted. Once it gets in the hands of players and additional content is added that can smooth out its presentation of information, I'm confident that folks will enjoy this game.

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8 / 10.0 - WrestleQuest
Sep 9, 2023

WrestleQuest oozes with charm, easter eggs, and sweet chin music thanks to how well it blends traditional RPG elements with a clear love of classic wrestling. It's easy to look past some of its design quirks because of how well other RPG elements are implemented that respect the player's time and encourage them to play an active role in worldbuilding. The Switch's current implementation ain't the best, but the game sure had me in a cobra clutch for hours.

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge – Dimension Shellshock is seated in the halfway point between good and great. On one hand, the Survival mode is better served for parties wanting a good challenge. On the other, TMNT fans should be excited about additional characters for replaying the already fantastic beat-em-up. If you're looking to replay the single player experience with two new characters or a challenge for yourself and your friends, then Dimension Shellshock is a no brainer.

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8.5 / 10.0 - 30XX
Sep 5, 2023

It's pretty clear to me that 30XX is gameplay-forward over anything else. This isn't a bad thing, but setting your expectations as such will prevent you from thinking that you'll become invested in 30XX's protagonists, antagonists, and everyone in between. Instead, you should expect a casual yet fun roguelite platformer that can be picked up and returned to at any time without needing to remember your progress, any side missions, and/or any other progression-based mechanics. I've quite enjoyed seeing 30XX progress through Early Access; I've enjoyed its official release on the Switch, too. I'm quite excited to take 30XX with me when traveling and returning to it when I need a good platforming roguelite fix if I need to wind down after a long day at work. I just hope that someday the Switch version will get the map maker in some capacity.

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9.5 / 10.0 - Starfield
Aug 31, 2023

Starfield changes the RPG game by adding a slow burn of a main quest alongside a character management system that keeps players' power in check. It's nearly perfect, and I can't wait to spend another chunk of my life playing another excellent Bethesda RPG.

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10 / 10.0 - Turbo Overkill
Aug 23, 2023

By just about every single metric for evaluating a boomer shooter, Turbo Overkill excels and delivers in spades. I had a near limitless amount of agency to play as I want and still enjoy a boomer shooter experience without frills, gimmicks, and other artificial difficulty spikes. It oozes creativity while taking players on an exhilarating ride through a cyberpunk apocalypse. It's the perfect blend of gore, seriousness, and silliness. Turbo Overkill is a literal spectacle of unfettered, high-octane boomer shooter gameplay. Call it a symphony of destruction, mayhem, gore, and violence. Call it bloody good fun. Call it whatever you want, really, so long as fun is somewhere in that mix. The world of Turbo Overkill is one worth exploring and desecrating with Johnny Turbo's chainsaw leg.

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9 / 10.0 - Gravity Circuit
Jul 12, 2023

Gravity Circuit contains the best parts of the SNES-era of 2D action platforming without the artificial difficulty spikes and frustrations. Its combat is fluid, easy to pick up, and exciting to master. Its pacing ramps up with the player. Its music is a nostalgia bomb of high-energy and synthetic charm. Yes, it's a short play, but it contains enough content to satisfy most players and get them hooked into using Kai's hookshot over, over, and over again. If this doesn't sound like a love letter to retro platforming, I don't know what will.

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