Graphically, it may not be the most impressive game that came out in 2023, and the colors can sometimes sear the eyes. But that’s the extent of my complaints so far (I haven’t yet finished the game). I’ve enjoyed what I’ve seen so far of Asgard’s Wrath 2 and it’ll take a lot for VR games in 2024 to top it.
It’s hard to see a world where I wouldn’t recommend Spider-Man 2, at least to the series’ fans. If you enjoyed the first game, you’ll almost certainly enjoy this one. The sequel would have to have a lot more flaws and shortcomings than it does to squander the goodwill of its predecessor. The story is enjoyable, with every actor bringing their A-game, and everything is so beautifully animated the sight of New York will make you weep.
However, if you’re more used to modern farming sims and want one that will give you more to do on a daily basis, AWL might be too simplistic for you. There’s just not a lot happening in Forgotten Valley. Regardless of your preference, the in-game marriage being pushed within the very first chapter felt way too rushed and forced. If you were hoping to have fun, interesting characters to spend your in-game life with, you’ll again likely be disappointed.
I wish I could say that Dead Island 2 came out a big winner after such a long development cycle. But it’s not Game of the Year material. It’s not even what I would call a great zombie game — there are many that do story or even gameplay better. But Dead Island 2 is solid. It is competent, and it is fun. If you want some uncomplicated zombie-slaying antics in a beautiful setting, Dead Island 2 will scratch that itch. But I don’t expect anyone to still be talking about it this time next year.
There is a chance that fans of the original won’t take to this altered version well, and some of the elements in the above section do keep it from being a perfect experience. Even leaving aside the fact that it’s a remake, it’s still a solid game overall, and it’ll give joy for new players who experience this refreshed and renewed Resident Evil 4.
The main issue I have with OT2 is in its similarities to its predecessor. It’s a fun and excellent example of the genre, but doesn’t really stretch beyond it. I suppose there are worse sins a game can commit than just not feeling much different from its great predecessor. Still, if Octopath Traveler wasn’t your thing, Octopath Traveler II likely won’t be, either.
I’ll come back here and rate the game once I’ve finished the last chapter. However, I’m not convinced that it’s going to become any more magical and entertaining than it is now. It’s a shame, because the game starts from a good place: A new fantasy IP with a take-no-prisoners female protagonist. And I can tell that a lot of the people who worked on the game were sincerely trying. But I can also tell that several others very much were not.
I hope there’s a horror game or Dead Space fan out there who gets more out of this game than I did. As it stands, I can’t really recommend it. I feel it would probably disappoint both the horror game aficionado and the Dead Space fan. I know I walked away from it feeling unfulfilled.
But these issues didn’t really impair my enjoyment of the game. It would take a lot more than this for me to not have fun with a Bayonetta game. I think they’re worth remarking on, especially if Platinum is planning to continue the series. I’m not sure Bayonetta 3 will ever feel as special to me as the original was, but it’s still wonderful in its own way. I’m glad to have it after such a long wait.
The story of God of War Ragnarök may not be as straightforward as it was in God of War, but that’s to its credit. It’s messy and complicated, but that makes the emotional payoff all the better. The gameplay remains largely unchanged, which unfortunately does lose it some points with me, but it does feel enjoyable when the player can settle into a rhythm. God of War Ragnarök is an exceptionally good game, and if you loved the last one, you’ll almost certainly love this one too.
There’s nothing wrong with paying a high price to gild the lily – but there’s nothing wrong with not wanting to do so, either. I think The Last of Us Part 1 will make a great addition to the casual TLOU fan’s library when it inevitably goes on sale, and maybe the PC players when it launches on that platform as well.
However, it’s overall a great experience to play. It delights in its subject matter, and what the protagonist lacks in dialogue, they make up for in puckish charm. Yes, the story is short, but it doesn’t waste any of its space or time. It’s a wonderful game to play, especially now before the really massive releases start later this year.
Chinatown Detective Agency is made in the image of classic adventure games and never aspires beyond that. Meeting it on its own terms, it’s an adequate cybernoir mystery with a compelling lead and colorful scenery. If you’re not into that already, this game probably won’t tickle your fancy very much.
For all the giggles Wonderlands gave me, a lot of the humor relies on certain Borderlands tropes that have never been my cup of tea. My main problem is that if the series has one good joke, it proceeds to grind the joke down to the gums, wringing all possible humor out of it.
I will repeat: Ghostwire: Tokyo is not a bad game. I was interested enough to stick with it and engage with as much of it as possible. If you have more patience for open-world exploration and tedious collectable-finding than I do, then you might get more out of it. I didn’t go into detail about this, but the story is decent and well-told, and that counts for something. This game is also bursting with visual flavor and interest, the kind of which you won’t find elsewhere.
I enjoyed Tunic, and I was pleased during most of my time with the game. It’s challenging, but it’s also tranquil. It’s a little slice of puzzle-y goodness in the middle of multiple massive open-world releases, and for that I’m grateful it exists. I just wish sometimes Tunic would meet me halfway and not leave me frustrated either with the controls or with the exploration.
Sherlock Holmes Chapter One is a decent adventure game that lets you play as the great detective. The trouble is, it wants to be more than that. It wants to be an action-adventure game with an open world. It wants Sherlock to be a fun and interesting player character, but the game makes him drag around a buddy who’s even less helpful than Watson.