This rerelease of Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney is an interesting one because it doesn't really do anything that we didn't see when it originally came out 10 years ago, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Rather than of a rebuilt game with shiny bells and whistles that clutter up the core experience, we're instead treaded to a faithful rendition with updated visuals for a modern console generation. It's the easiest way to experience the game if you haven't before, and it's a great way to pay it another visit if you have. As its lifecycle crawls to a close, the Nintendo 3DS has become somewhat of an archive, collecting franchise favorites and housing them all in one place. With the rest of the mainline Ace Attorney series already available on the 3DS eShop, it was just a matter of time before Apollo Justice had his day in court.
We want it to be clear that the version we played for this review was the full Switch eShop release. We've been told that the game runs much smoother on PC in the launch period, so you might want to make that your platform of choice if you want to check this one out – and honestly, you should. There's nothing groundbreaking to be found here, but it's a decent game with interesting ideas that unfortunately aren't fully fleshed out. We just can't fully recommend the Switch version in its initial form, and it's disappointing that this one falls under the category of games released in a sub-par state that leave owners hoping that promised updates will save the day.
Has-Been Heroes is a game that is full of great ideas but gets dragged down by poor execution. The way it combines RPG and roguelike elements with basic tower defense gameplay has so much potential that it unfortunately can't live up to in the face of imbalanced difficulty curves and unwieldy controls. It feels much more like a proof of concept that, with time and updates, could some day lead to a great adventure.
Human Resource Machine is a grim reminder of what life can be if you allow yourself to waste away and become part of the corporate machine. Beyond that, it's also a decent puzzle game if you're interested in simple coding and assembly language. This Switch version doesn't bring any significant changes along with it to make it stand out from previous platform releases, but it still manages to deliver a unique puzzler experience that will leave you scratching your head if you don't throw your Switch against a wall first. If nothing else, Human Resource Machine is reassurance that even if there is no escaping the soul-crushing banality of reality, at least we have videogames!
Super Strike Beach Volleyball does well to bring together engaging gameplay and charming visuals to provide a family-friendly experience on the digital beaches of the 3DS. While the gameplay may be limited to several modes of what is essentially the same game, there is enough challenge and strategy involved to make it worth pursuing and returning to for repeat plays through. It's not without its faults, but Super Strike Beach Volleyball is a fun and worthy addition to any family of games.
Story of Seasons may rightfully belong in the Harvest Moon family, but it's a strong enough entry to stand on its own. Taking familiar gameplay elements such as farming and the romance system, this title uses the framework that came before it and expands on that in many positive directions. It may not be the most polished game, with its finicky frame rate and an underwhelming 3D display, but the charming characters and satisfying gameplay make this a game worth any Harvest Moon fan's time. If you're looking to start a relaxing new virtual life full of charm and charisma, look no further than Story of Seasons.
Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate – Deluxe Edition is as problematic as its title is long. The cinematics are ugly, the controls aren't as responsive as they need to be, and the characters and environments are boring. The most offensive part of all of this, however, is the fact that none of the issues that the original version faced were addressed, leaving players with a sloppily put together platformer that isn't much fun to play. Like the 3DS version that came before it, this game is full of great ideas that are poorly executed, making for a disappointing experience overall.
The LEGO Movie Videogame represents a potential tipping point for the series in that it's the first time its source material actually interferes with what makes the otherwise bland gameplay unique. This is still a very good game and a worthy addition to any LEGO fan's collection, but the series' seams are definitely starting to show.
If you're looking for a fun way to unwind, relax, and have a laugh alone or with some friends, LEGO Marvel Super Heroes is exactly the game to fulfill that need. It's pure family-friendly fun that squeezes in just enough variety to ensure that players of all ages will find something to enjoy. A heroic feat, indeed.