While The Entropy Center sticks very close to its Portal-esque roots, the well-crafted puzzles work perfectly with its simple but effective time travel mechanic. There are some sections where too many enemies can be an annoying distraction from the puzzling, but these are forgivable because the temporal manipulation powers provide such unique challenges. Time is our most precious resource, but it’s well worth spending it here.
While I went into 41 Hours fully expecting a single A experience, I struggled to find 41 minutes of enjoyment out of my review playthrough. I honestly don’t see any quick, feasible ways to fix 41 Hours either, as there isn’t much here that isn’t a mess. Between the game’s unnaturally accurate and overpowered enemies, graphics would barely be noteworthy on an Xbox 360, and a plot does little to spurn interest, I can’t help but feel this one came out of the oven 41 months too early.
As a love letter to classic PS1 survival horror games, Signalis comes in crystal clear. Its core gameplay loop is tense and immensely satisfying, and the atmosphere and enemy designs make excellent use of the pixellated graphical style. While some errant hit detection and occasionally obtuse puzzles try to muddle this signal, this is one broadcast worth receiving.
I’m very ambivalent about Tower of Fantasy, but despite seeing quite a few flaws, I also see a lot of potential here. The attempts to riff on Genshin Impact and Honkai Impact 3rd wind up leaving some of the things it attempts to emulate feeling inferior to where it’s drawing inspiration from. That said, what it tries to do differently is help make a functional, stable platform from which Tower of Fantasy could truly start to grow from, and make something entirely fresh and unique from its competition. The exploration features, the Relic system, and even the weapon types are willing to come together and make something fun and unique, but it’s held back by a mostly lackluster world, bad story writing, annoying upgrade systems, and currency overload. I’d say go in strictly on Free-to-Play ideals, temper your expectations and focus on the things it does differently, and you’ll probably find something to like.
At the end of my hauntingly simple mission, I really wanted to walk out liking SENSEs: Midnight more than I did. There’s a great aesthetic, cool ideas, and some real potential with the fixed camera angles, but it’s all buried by bad stealth mechanics, a puddle-deep story, and horror disarming bugs and hiccups. Still, for its price point, consider giving it a whirl, at the very least to give some money to the developers because they seem like they really wanted to make something great here. I do hope to see a much more refined sequel in the future.
At the end of the game, I really felt like there could’ve been a lot more Quintus and the Absent Truth. The acting felt flat, the themes weren’t as fleshed out as they should’ve been, and the only truly scary thing here is how short the whole experience was. I really wanted to see this succeed, as the art style brought some unique potential, but sadly the experience needs a lot more refinement to be as interesting in execution as it was in premise.
It’s a real shame that I couldn’t find much to enjoy here, since there’s a good amount of potential here, but you’d think with such a fun theme and the mechanics at play, there’d be so much more life in this game. Maybe I went in with too high of expectations, maybe I wasn’t the target audience, but between the monotonous music that I eventually muted and the gameplay loop that tires itself out long before the cake’s done cooking, I really want to like this game more, but, to be honest, I can’t say I’m thrilled about playing this anymore. If you’ve played Super Mario and Donkey Kong, you’ve been here before. If you don’t mind that and just want some solid platforming to kill five or so hours, it’s harmless enough that I’d say go for it if it’s on sale. But otherwise, it’s reshades of the same thing, and this game doesn’t dare to tread much farther than those before it.
Developer 34 Big Things hasn’t just given AG Racing a new stepping stone; they’ve gifted us an entire landmass here as proof that they’re here to keep revitalizing a fading genre. While the difficulty spikes are on the tall side, the unlockable system missed a few spot checks, and the AI may be off its meds, I can see far more than 34 big things to love about Redout 2 and I can’t wait to see where this series takes AG Racing to next.
You can’t make a premise like this up, folks. You’re a flying saucer abducting alien cows and there’s just something funny and wacky about it all. Yet, I walked away from Moo Lander rather impressed at the level of quality here. While the titular cow battles do need some revamping to bring in the fun factor, I can easily forgive that for the gorgeous art, very competent and solid gameplay, and surprisingly in-depth worldbuilding. If you’re looking for something a little out-of-this-world to spice up your starry night, take a flight to the neatest Metroidvania this side of the Milky Way.
Wife Quest‘s cutesy aesthetic and straightforward mechanics belie a competent yet surprisingly difficult platformer. You’ll need to approach this adventure with patience and dexterity (and an appreciation for a bit of ham and lewdness certainly wouldn’t hurt, either). If you’re up to the occasionally unforgiving challenge this platformer offers and don’t mind some fanservice here and there, then this is a quest well worth undertaking.
When I have to struggle to pry myself away from a game to actually write my review, you know it’s done something very right! Minor gripes such as the lack of a proper title screen and the procedural generation skipping leg day here and there are completely outweighed by how much raw fun can be had from blasting demon hordes away with some of the most creative guns I’ve seen in a long while. With a rocking soundtrack, addicting gameplay loop, and creative progression system, Nightmare Reaper delivers a bloody and bountiful harvest. If you’re a fan of old-school shooters, there’s no reason to miss out on this one.
Unless you have the patience of a saint, I would steer clear of In Nightmare. It really is a shame, as there’s an interesting story being told from Bill’s eyes and a really vibrant and vivid world with a unique style to explore, but any semblance of gameplay is horribly hampered by a nightmare of poor gameplay designs. I’ll keep dreaming of how much I’d enjoy this game once it sees some quality of life improvements show up to fix the plethora of lackluster stealth gameplay and frustrating “puzzles”.
All in all, would I recommend this dip into the ocean blue? Absolutely, but only if you consider what you’re getting into. There’s no denying this game is eye-candy of the sweetest caliber, with rarely any part of the vine-strangled world lacking vividly colored details. That said, you have to go in knowing that this is a perfect example of peaceful gaming, with no death or combat in sight. Exploration is the name of the game here, and it’s best to go into Submerged: Hidden Depths with low tension, an open mind, and a good pair of headphones. Admittedly, it’s on the short side, but if you’re eager to uncover the secret of these decaying cities, you’ll find the perfect game to scratch that urban exploration itch.
All in all, would I recommend squaring up with The Alien Cube? The best way I can describe this game is a very thin slice from an authentic Lovecraftian pie. It doesn’t entirely look the part, but you’ll take a bite and know exactly what you’re sinking your teeth into and probably end up reminded why you love this flavor of horror. From the surreal environments to the indescribable horrors after your blood, it’s the stuff known and loved by the Lovecraft community. Be warned though, that while the flavor tastes the part, The Alien Cube‘s optimization issues and occasionally lacking gameplay can make it tough to swallow. That said, if you can forgive a few missteps and have a hankering for hellish horrors, it’s worth digging into – especially when you consider its asking price.
Would I recommend tuning into Captain Toonhead vs. The Punks From Outer Space? Absolutely! But there are a few things to keep in mind. The game’s eye-searing color palette, the crude, childish humor, and lack of length and depth are going to be a hard swallow for some. But, if none of those deter you, I can confidently say that the gameplay’s fun and well thought out, the story is short, sweet, and to the point, and, most importantly, it is oozing with charm and heart. It’s easy to see Captain Toonhead vs. The Punks From Outer Space was made as a product of passion, and I can think of no better way to spend a Saturday morning than letting your inner child run wild in this cartoonish VR playground.
Neptunia hits a real middle-of-the-road balance with this one. On one side, the combat falls short of frantic ninja battles and the graphics desperately need a touch-up. On the other side though, the character designs are some of the best I’ve seen for a spin-off, it’s a treat to see the Senran Kagura gang interact with our favorite CPUs, and the story brings along the same meta humor and gaming references that Neptunia rarely fails to deliver. While the uninitiated might not find it fleshed out enough, for those who are fans of both series in this crossover, Neptunia x Senran Kagura: Ninja Wars is a beautiful bacchanalia of busty, battling babes!
All in all, would I recommend this slip into the dream world? If you really enjoy this developer’s games, I say go for it for the price it’s sitting at, but even fans of walking simulators might feel cheated out of a decent experience here. Maybe I wasn’t on enough drugs to catch the real meaning behind this. Maybe I just wasn’t the target audience. With a lack of interesting gameplay, visuals, or any sense of thematic cohesion, it’s not worth the time spent. As it stands, I’d say save the $4.00 for something a little more meaningful and a little less slipshod.
All in all, would I recommend this robot-fueled time travel adventure? Absolutely! Even though the story serves as yet another example of why one shouldn’t trifle with time travel, the fun involved makes turning the clock back to 1995 seem pretty enticing. From solid physics to flawlessly detailed environments, Time Loader takes the player on a wild ride through the past, and launches the neglected 2D puzzle-platformer genre into the future like a speeding DeLorean leaving flame trails in its wake.
All in all, there’s a lot of heart to this little gem. It’s got some rough edges, particularly in its refusal to hold players’ hands. Players might find they need the extra help, and for that, we’ll have a plethora of guides to help smooth over that issue. But the fact does remain that there’s a lack of guidance where it counts here. It’s worth keeping in mind that this game doesn’t want, nor need, to take itself seriously, so someone hoping for a long-lasting, deep plot should approach with caution. Lastly, if there’s one thing someone could take from this game, it’s that voxel’s back baby, and Cococucumber proves it in spades. The shading, atmosphere, and vivid coloring make the whole world pop in ways that only Cococucumber could’ve pulled off. If you’re in the mood for an ’80s-inspired sci-fi adventure with solid combat and beautiful, voxel-based visuals, Echo Generation has exactly what you’re looking for.