Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden has turned out to be another strong IP for developers, Don’t Nod. The game features unique, real-time character-swapping to access different techniques and a solemn story that works best when it’s focused on the protagonists, Red and Antea. While the enemy variety is lacking and the investigation elements can be a tad tiresome, this 25-hour action RPG should absolutely be on your radar.
Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown wears the Metroidvania belt with panache. The protagonist, Sargon can whip out a whole range of stylish assaults thanks to his handy teleportation maneuvers and flow through the difficult platforming hazards of Mount Qaf like an Olympic gymnast. It’s just a pity that the story isn’t anywhere near as strong. You can’t win them all, I suppose.
Alan Wake II is a fantastic follow-up to the 2010 original. The combat is more intense, the survival horror is peak and the story is even wilder. Just ensure you have a beefy enough rig (or patience) to keep up with all the hi-res spectacle on PC—and checkpoint-restarting glitches too.
Tevi is one of the best Metroidvanias of the year. Not only does it bring its own superb, anime-inspired aesthetic and RPG mechanics to the forefront, but Tevi also features some of the most lovingly crafted exploration and platforming segments we’ve ever seen from this genre.
WarioWare: Move It! inflicts more pain than it does joy. Arms will become tired, motion controls will frustrate, and then the experience will end well before it should. There are some fun microgames packed in here, but it’s such a shame that the execution really lets this entry down.
Sonic Superstars is a pretty decent throwback to the original 2D titles. With up to 4-player co-op, new abilities to experience and completely new stages to run through, this 5-hour adventure is generally filled with well-crafted stages and platforming gimmicks, even if some of them love to kill the momentum.
Even though I physically could not finish the game, from what I experienced, The Cosmic Wheel Sister featured a fairly compelling story and characters. However, it would often forgo the age-old show don’t tell technique, leaving the audience feeling like its biggest scenes are happening in another castle.
Double Dragon Gaiden is a short, yet very sweaty experience. The fast and furious combos and special moves make smacking goons feel very satisfying, while the pumping music and tag-team mechanics add in several layers of excitement.
Final Fantasy XVI stands tall as one of the best entries in the series, encapsulating the essence of the long-standing franchise whilst delivering an experience that sets the framework for future titles to come. From the moment I embarked on this journey, I was enthralled by its captivating narrative, breathtaking visuals and addictive action RPG gameplay, leaving me with no choice but to award it a straight 10/10, minor faults and all.