The First Samurai is the first piece of content in the entire Nioh franchise that feels underwhelming. Outside of the great boss battles and boss designs, the rest of DLC just feels bland and uninspired. The First Samurai simply doesn't do enough to give the franchise the farewell it deserves .
The Game Bakers have done a wonderful job creating a unique world and telling a love story that's believable and intriguing. I was fully invested in Kay and Yu and shaping their relationship. Though the game is all about the story, the game's turn-based combat is truly unique and demands your attention. What seals the deal is Havens's fantastic soundtrack providing some of the best electronic music I've heard in a while. For those looking for a different type of game, Haven is a great alternative for those looking for a great character-driven and emotional. experience.
It's easy to say a game is amazing because you simply enjoy it. Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age Definitive Edition on the other hand backs up that statement by providing one of, if not the best JRPG titles of all time. With so much added content and quality of life improvements, it's mind-blowing to me that a game so intricately designed could be made any better. Square Enix proved that no matter how good something is, it can always be better.
A fantastic world brought to life by great storytelling, world-building, and visual and audio design. Though I wish the voices and dialogue could have gotten some extra work put into it, overall Observer: System Redux is Bloober Team's best game yet. The Ray Tracing breaths life to a dusty and decrepit building while the DualSense allows you to feel the various actions Lazarski performs. Observer: System Redux is a great example of what both Ray Tracing and the innovations of the DualSense controller are capable of.
XIII is a disastrous remake that probably never should have been made. The franchise's cult classic status officially has a major blemish in this remake. It's almost impossible to find anything positive to say about it because every aspect is just so broken and bland. If you want to get into the franchise, read the graphic novel but do yourself a favor and avoid this remake at all costs.
Miles Morales is a great game on PlayStation 4 just as it's a great game on PlayStation 5. The difference between the two when it comes to performance is marginal at best and if you delt with issues of its predecessor like long load times you should be able to handle them here as they are much improved. The PS4 version is a great addition to the library for those who aren't ready to jump to the next generation but it's also a great look at what you can expect when you finally make the jump.
Sakuna: Of Rice and Ruin is a fun and entertaining game. I was quickly swept in by its charming characters, great writing, and rice farming simulation. Unfortunately, a lot of the game mechanics hold it back including the brutal day and night cycle and having to wait an entire game year just to level up Sakuna to make the game a little easier.
Remothered: Broken Porcelain should have been a good game but instead ends up as one of the year's biggest disappointments. The great soundtrack and atmosphere can't save it from terribly broken enemy A.I., an overly complicated and confusing story, and the plethora of bugs and glitches that plague the title. This final release is here, but it feels like Broken Porcelain needed at least six more months of development time.
Another great addition to an already excellent game. The Darkness in the Capital DLC is packed with great content that not only expands the lore of the Nioh franchise but provides some excellent boss battles, level design, and easily the best weapon in the entire franchise. It's also pretty great to fight an ancestor of one of gaming's most iconic characters as a fun easter egg.
Genshin Impact provides you with more content as a free to play game than most full-price titles do. With so much to offer, you can easily get lost in its lush world, fun and exciting combat, and deep exploration. Genshin impact is easily one of the best surprises of the year and should be a model for how future free-to-play titles should be constructed.